Thursday, March 31, 2005

Wet wet wet

It's also been really cold cold cold. And it would happen the day after I obtain a lovely new summery top to wear, too. It looks like I'll be getting those elastic-waisted flannel trousers after all...

Last night was a double-duvet night. Sleeping under two duvets is normally reserved for mid-Winter, so I'm thinking it's only a matter of days or weeks before I retrieve the electric blanket from storage as well.

This morning the rain was so hard that, in the ten minutes it took to get to the bus stop, I was completely soaked from the hem of my rain jacket downwards. My boots kept my lower legs dry, but my white'n'wobbly thighs were only covered by the inadequate skirt I was wearing. It's made of that material which doesn't take long to dry, but feels really cold and clammy in the meantime. When I got to work, I had to be careful where I sat because I kept leaving damp patches.

I had a major preggy moment last night - I forgot to go and have dinner at my mum's. It's a big deal because dinner with my mum has been a standing date for the last, oh, twelve years. Not an engagement I should easily forget, yet I did forget, and only remembered when the boy mentioned it to me half an hour after I should've left.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005


I had a blog post all ready to go this morning, about my wait for the refrigerater delivery. But then Blogger lost it, so I gave up for most of the day.

And it's been quite a busy one, too.

First up, the delivery guys actually turned up nice and early with my lovely new fridge/freezer. They managed to not put any dents into my door frames or furniture, and even gave the fridge a good wipe before leaving with the old one.

Then, I walked into town to have lunch with my mate Desiree. She took me clothes shopping and insisted on paying for a really nice top which I liked (thanks :-)). It's a wrap top of black silky fabric, very similar to the dressing gown I bought in San Francisco's Chinatown a few years ago except it's shorter and doesn't have the ubiquitous embroidered dragon on the back. So now I have two new things to wear in my larger form.

By the time I got home, it was time to take my mum out shopping (to make up for Pak'n'Save being closed on Easter Sunday). I was on my best behaviour and didn't get grumpy even when she bought two large cartons of rice noodles weighing about 15kgs each. (I got my own back though, because she couldn't make me, a pregnant woman, lift them out of the boot and into her house. She had a go at doing this herself, but when she started to complain of chest pains I thought I'd better give her a hand.)

And then, it was time to go to the supermarket to buy stuff to put into my new fridge/freezer: ice cream, fish fillets, beef fillets, cream doughnuts and scones. Plus home-made wontons from Mum's kitchen. Mmmm....

I'm kinda tuckered out now.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

The ole' body just keeps on expanding

I believe that my bra-less days are well and truly over.


I've always liked Lars von Trier's films. They tend to be pretty dark, and maybe depressing, but he always tells a really interesting story. I must confess that I never finished watching Dancer in the Dark though, because it seemed to just get sadder and sadder, and in the end I decided I didn't want my mood to plunge.

It took a while for me to get around to seeing Dogville, but after reading what Hazel had to say about it, I knew I had to.

At one point in the film it got so bleak that I was regretting ever getting it off the shelf at the video shop. Without wanting to giving away any of the plot, I'd have to say it was gruelling. Not boring or too-slow, but hard to watch. It was certainly a bit of a change from our last night's choice, Resident Evil - Armageddon.

I'd sum up Dogville's plot as - Woman cursed with excessive idealism seeks refuge in a backwater town and is cured.

The townsfolk who initially seem harmless and friendly turn out to be pretty nasty, and even the guy who supposedly falls in love with Grace, the beautiful fugitive, turns traitor through his passivity. On the other hand, Grace is a frustrating character because she just accepts all the crap that the Dogville folk dish out to her.

I was almost praying for a happy ending. If I didn't get it I would have had to follow it up with Zoolander, just to stop me from being suicidal. The ending was bleak too, but in a way that was highly satisfying for me.

But then, I'm all for revenge. Some great discussion about Dogville can be read here. And yes, I thought it was anti-American, though only because of the stills at the end of the movie to the tunr of Bowie's Young Americans.

"Where are all the good men?" Nobody knows, but they aren't in NZ

According to a NZ social scientist, there really is a shortage of men. Not only is the number of "Kiwi men in their relationship-forming years" much lower than their female equivalent - remember that the number includes men whom right-thinking women shouldn't touch with a barge pole (really ugly, unpleasant and/or stupid men), so the true number of possible mates for women in the 20-49 age group would be even more depressingly small. The idea is supported by the fact that I had to import my own mate from England.

The same article says that the situation is reversed in Denmark and Germany (and I would think China also falls into this category). The answer for women who don't want to stay single, and are reluctant to date men who are either very young or very much older, is clear - emigration.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

the weather gods are out to get me

In spite of weather forecasts earlier this week which predicted rain all through the Easter break, the sun shone both yesterday morning and this morning. Both times, I was optimistic enough to hang the washing on the line. Both times I was forced to take it all off the line again because by the time the clothes were nearly dry, the rain had arrived after all.

It was looking really promising today. The sun stayed out till just before we got home from lunching and refrigerator shopping. During lunch I managed to get greasy food stains on my new top, the one which I had created less than 24 hours previously. I should've predicted that would happen - not only was the garment new, but it was also light-coloured.

As for our new refrigerator, the possibility of getting one of those sexy curvy retro models was pretty much nil. We settled for getting a "normal" one. Neither of us bothered to check whether it is self-defrosting, super-energy efficient or beeps at you when the door's left open too long. Our main concern was that it didn't cost too much, yet big enough in both fridge and freezer compartments i.e. about the same size as our currently dying one. Unfortunately, they can't deliver it until Tuesday because we're right in the middle of Easter.

Friday, March 25, 2005

This is the culmination of a whole day's work i.e. including the "practice" garment which took four hours to do. It's a tent, alright. Posted by Hello

Thursday, March 24, 2005

The computer back-up debacle

I went in work today for one purpose only, and that was to burn the office's weekly computer back-ups onto two DVDs (a weekly task which is done every Thursday). I arrived at 9.40am, and hoped to be in and out in a little over an hour.

At 2.30pm, I was had only just finishing burning the second DVD.

I've been told before that it's naive to think that any process involving computers can actually be done quickly, so I shouldn't have been surprised. Out of the eight computers whose backups I had to burn, only one had successfully produced a backup in the first place - mine. I had to rerun the backup jobs for the other seven, which took about three hours. While I waited, I fixed a botch-up on the intranet, answered phone calls and filed things into pigeonholes.

When it was all over, it was time for some minor retail therapy (nothing big, since the refrigerator purchase is looming over the coming weekend), so I went looking for some extra long, stretchy t-shirts to buy. Some maternity clothes only look good on when you're about ten weeks from giving birth. Instead, I've bought some fabric and a sewing pattern so I can at least play around with the fit.

On my walk home, I came across a very noisy band playing in the street. They appeared to be called Voice of Youth. Gosh, youth sure have a loud voice.

My feet are all sore now from carrying me around the shops and home over two and a half hours. I think I'll put them up now and read my Philip K. Dick novels.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

My refrigerator's death throes

The first thing I noticed this morning, was that the fridge/freezer was even more noisy than usual. Like the dehumidifier, it has gotten increasingly loud with age. I've had it for maybe ten years, and in that time it's progressed from a quiet wee thing (like a large, white church mouse) to occasionally producing loud cracking and creaking sounds, sudden enough to induce heart attacks in the elderly; now it's developed a high-volume hum which sounds to me very much like a cry for appliance euthanasia.

What added to our problem this morning was that the freezer door had somehow been left ajar overnight.

Initially, I didn't do anything about this other than to rectify the door position and then tell the boy about it when he got out of bed. The boy was not such a bimbo about it however. He rightly set about going through the freezer contents, tossing out anything that felt thawed. Ten minutes and a shopping bag full of potentially bacterial produce later, our freezer is less than a third full and I've got doubts about the stuff we left in there.

It was a sign I think, to finally do something about replacing the fridge/freezer. I know the boy would much rather we spent our money on something more fun, like another boxed set of Angel DVDs or another X-Box game, or even some flash baby-care equipment. But I'm going to have to put my foot down. I'd love one of these curvy retro designs, preferably in red - but most likely it'll be a boring boxy white thing, perhaps one that beeps at you when you leave the door open for too long.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Melted ice cream and feline anatomy

It was a long work today - 9am till 6.15pm, with only half an hour for lunch plus morning and afternoon tea breaks. I couldn't even tune out during the day-long meeting, because I'm the minute-taker and had to pay attention.

The big plus was that our snacks and lunch were provided, and very nice food it was too. Because I've been brought up not to waste a single grain of rice in my bowl, it was impossible not to eat too much. Even with careful pickiness though, I still didn't have room for more than a smidgeon of dessert. Without meaning to be melodramatic, it was almost emotionally painful to see that huge block of melting strawberry and chocolate coated ice cream (and accompanying fresh fruit salad) left on the table as we left the dining room at the end of the lunch break, knowing it was probably going to be thrown out with the other leftovers. What a waste of creamy dairy goodness...

There. Now that I've got that off my chest, I feel so much better now.

The boy and I have discovered a new phrase to use on each other. I think it's Australian - it's definitely been used on Kath and Kim, and it's a synonym for to pout. It's To have a mouth like a pussy bum, or to have a mouth like a cat's bottom.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Fogged in, fogged out

This week my job is to take the minutes for a three day long meeting. But the start of the meeting has been pushed back a few hours because the airport is closed and no-one can get into town. If only I'd known before I dragged myself out of bed early this morning, after another night of broken sleep.

I had a bit of a grumble to my boss last week. My work days are Wednesday to Friday, and I kind of regret this because it means that I miss out on all those public holidays which fall on a Monday. I'd been philosophical about it though, because I knew that at least I would get Good Friday as a paid day off - until I realised that on the week of Good Friday I'd be asked to work Monday to Wednesday. Darned if I was going to miss out on my only paid day off! Anyway, the grumbling worked, because now I get a day off in lieu (that's not the same as a day off in the loo).

The boy has started calling me preg-head whenever I start to vague out. I would normally give him one of my "evil" looks, but they aren't working any more.

I decided its time to start wearing the maternity clothes which my sister-out-law lent me months ago. She's a little larger than I, so I'd have to pull the elastic in really tight so that the pants don't fall down. Even so, I keep having to hitch them up. When I do this at work, I get the feeling it doesn't look all that professional.

Looking at pictures of women at different stages of pregnancy in my Cosmopolitan Pregnancy magazine, I realise that my bump may well extend humungously over the next few weeks. The difference between the size of my bump at nearly 21 weeks, and that of Kylie of Melbourne at 23 weeks, looks like about twenty pizza's worth. Am I really going to distend that much over the next couple of weeks? Now I understand why I might get stretchmarks.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

The Village

The reviews I'd seen for The Village weren't all that encouraging, but it was the likeliest looking candidate at the video shop so we gave it a try. It's probably just as well that I wasn't expecting much, because in the end I quite enjoyed it. It's not at all scary - well, mildly so at the beginning - and from the middle of the film onwards it's not so much scary as interesting.

If you haven't seen it yet and don't want to find out what happens, don't read on.

I couldn't believe it when, just as Ivy is about to enter the woods and risk a mauling from Those of which we do not speak, it turns out that the creatures are made up to prevent villagers from leaving. I didn't get the twist until, after her long ordeal in the woods (including being chased by one of those of which we do not speak), she came up against what looked like a boundary fence. "Hah!" I thought. No doubt we'll find out that the villagers are in fact in an insane asylum - a very spacious one.

Despite the non-scariness and the slow pace, the story certainly got me thinking (enough to invade my sleep, even). It made me think about the possibility that being a victim of crime (or just related to one) might be enough to make you want to withdraw from society completely, to the point where you deny the existence of the outside world; about how the offspring, who have known no other life, would feel if they found out they were in fact being cushioned from a high-tech, high-stress society where people actually use swear words and don't always behave like gentlemen;that whereever there are human beings there is the potential for crime.

I also wondered whether these families wouldn't have been better off going to live with the Amish, thus regaining their idealised innocence without having to pretend the rest of the world doesn't exist.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Interesting tidbits about NZ writing

It's not often that I find something quotable in the NZ Automobile Association magazine, although if I were in the market for a brand new car then this would be the first place I'd look. It's really a good thing that you get the option of receiving their magazine online instead of on hardcopy, because it means having less paper to chuck in the recycling bin.

I found an interesting little article about New Zealand writers in the latest issue. It's a joint effort by John McCrystal, Paul Little and John Cranna, called Getting It In Writing, and I've pasted in a couple of quotes which I found amusing (and you don't have to be interested in NZ writing to get it).

About early feminist writings in NZ:
“1920. Jean Devanny won considerable notoriety for her turgid 1926 novel, The Butcher Shop. This was banned in Germany, Britain and New Zealand. Curiously, while everyone else in the world was scandalised by its vicious attack on the institution of marriage, it was banned in New Zealand for making our farmers look bad.”

About Denis Glover's sudden lack of desire to gas himself:
“Plagued by depression, Glover once set out to kill himself by sealing the doors, turning on his gas oven and lying on the kitchen floor. After a while, he became bored, so dragged a mattress into the room to make himself comfortable and opened a Dickens novel to occupy himself. After another little while, enjoying the book immensely, he pulled out his tobacco and matches and was about to light up when he realised, with a start, what that would have meant. “I could have bloody killed myself,” he said, and permanently abandoned his suicide attempt.”

If only all NZ writing was as entertaining.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Irishness, meat pies and something about Mary

Sorry, all you anonymous commenters out there - I've changed my blog settings so that only registered users (registered with Blogger, that is) can comment. You can blame that Mary woman/person/organisation and her useless space-wasting penis pill comment. There's enough junk out there in cyberspace already, what with my spending all my free time blogging, without the addition of unproductive comment spam.

So it's St Patrick's Day today. Excuse my lack of St Patrick's spirit, but what a big commercial con. And I'm not just saying this because my alcohol tolerance has decreased from drunk-on-a-double-gin to zero, nor because I've never liked Guinness.

There's just this big image of the Irish as somehow cooler than everyone else. I have nothing against them as individuals - I've never met one I didn't like. But I do get sick of yet another Hollywood movie about charmingly alcoholic Irish people (from The Commitments to Road to Perdition). I vaguely remember a comedic song I once heard which basically said that as long as you can pass yourself off as Irish there'll always be film work (and bar work) for you. I think it's utterly true. Bah humbug, I say.

On a more positive note, I came across a really nice steak pie today. Americans will no doubt think that the very idea of a pie with a savoury filling is about as familiar and appealing as say, putting barbegue sauce on your ice cream. The rest of us know better. Meat pie quality varies from yummy to nasty, from a product which is little more than a pastry pocket full of gravy to the meaty, tasty item I had for lunch today. Among other things, it depends on the filling/gravy ratio, and whether any rodent bits have slipped in unawares. The latter isn't just a joke you know - back in the Seventies it was a running joke that a buying a certain brand would just about guarantee you a chance to taste stewed mouse (which sorta reminds me of that Buffy episode, Doublemeat Palace - "It's not meat, it's people!").

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

All about your body

I've never thought of myself as someone who is great at "attention to detail" (but I'd never say so in a job interview because that would just be interview suicide). However, things are just getting ridiculous. I've made a bunch of embarrassing mistakes which, if someone else had done it, would have given me reason call them a total idiot who's crap at their job.

And I've been assured it'll get worse. Soon I'll be unable to talk in complete sentences. Is that how babies learn to speak babytalk? Because they spend their formative years with their (temporarily) brain-shrunk mums?

I needed something to distract me from my intelligence leakage, so I've been leafing through a book called The Odd Body 2, by Dr Stephen Juan. It's an Aussie compilation of questions and answers sent in by readers, and full of interesting miscellanea. For instance:

- A woman over 40 is 128% more likely to bear a left-handed child, than a woman under 40.
- Studies have shown a correlation between hayfever and shyness (snorting, sneezing and wheezing would tend to stop me from putting on my suave act, so yeah).
- Children under six don't blush.
- Men hiccup more than women.
- Inuit are among the most hairless people on the planet, which is odd because you'd think they'd need the extra cover.
- Human stomach acid is strong enough to dissolve razor blades.
- The subject people most dream about is falling, followed by being chased; trying but failing to perform a simple task; doing chores at home, work or school; and lastly, sex.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

46 chromosones - no more, no less

It was news that put a smile on my face and a tear in each eye. My baby is free from chromosonal abnormality. I'm no doomsayer, but at my age the possibility of having a Downs child was always hanging there in the back of my mind.

Today, I heard what I wanted to hear. I also found out what sex my baby is, but I won't be posting that information because the boy doesn't want to know.

The midwife also assured me that broken sleep, my sore bum and an increase in allergy action are not unusual during pregnancy.

The appointment concluded with a urine test, a listen to the hummingbird-fast heartbeat going on in my womb and an appointment for a 20-week scan, before I waddled home happy.

Monday, March 14, 2005

Like a hangover, but without the preceding party

It sure hasn't been a good couple of days for my sinuses. There's been sneezing, wheezing, waking up with a headache this morning and lack of sleep last night. For the last few months, I've been waking up at around 3am every morning and not been able to get back to sleep. This is where early morning TV is useful, because what's on at this time of day tends to put me right back to sleep again. Every so often it doesn't work though, because I'll end up avidly watching baby cheetahs or crocodiles on Animal Planet.

I don't know why this is happening. I was expecting to get up several times a night to pee, but that isn't happening (if anything, I wake up really thirsty because I've been mouth-breathing again, and need to drink water). What I'm experiencing hasn't happened since the months preceding my big OE years ago (to non-Antipodeans, the OE is when you take around two years off to work and travel overseas, usually based in or around London). So maybe it's anxiety.

Try drinking a glass of warm milk before you go to bed, I hear you suggest. Are you crazy? I reply, I'm lactose-intolerant - you'll have me staggerig to the toilet with massive gut-aches all night.

My poor workmates. It's bad enough that they have to put up with my pregancy-related brain shrinkage, without also having to deal with the shortcomings resulting from sleep deprivation.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Not quite everything you wanted to know about sneezing

Me and my allergies. Lately I've been sneezing a lot, and when I sneeze I'm sure my neighbours down the road and around the corner can hear it. Now I have a new concern - when I sneeze so hard that I can feel my insides jiggle, what's it doing to the baby? Is it waking him/her up, or does the amniotic fluid cushion him (much like being in a swimming pool stops you from feeling an earthquake - and this I know from experience)?

Being a frequent sneezer, I looked up sneezing on the Internet (as you do).

According to, it is possible that being pregnant makes my allergies worse, but sneezing doesn't harm the baby (okay I assumed that; I want to know whether the baby turns somersaults when I sneeze). I am however relieved to get confirmation that it's okay to use my steroid-choked nasal spray.

I didn't find the answer to my burning question, but I did find some trivia about sneezing:

Apparently looking into bright light can make you sneeze. I truly believe this, because whenever I get one of those almost-but-not-quite sneezes, all I have to do is look towards the nearest source of light to get relief.

If you're a Muslim, it's important to say the right thing when someone sneezes - "May Allah be merciful on you,", and the sneezer has to reply, "All the praises are for Allah,".

Often my sneezes are immediately followed by wheeziness. As if I needed another sympton to complain about. This is apparently because of my allergy to dust mite poo. I suppose it means I should do more dusting (or even better, get someone else to do it for me).

There is a television show in Japan which consists solely of people sneezing.

The sneeze has been called "the orgasm of the nose". It's also been regarded as a sign from the gods, or an opportunity for the devil to enter your body. There are lots of superstitions about sneezing. I know that my mother used to tell me she was expecting something special in the mail, or a long-distance phone call, because she sneezed (and didn't have a cold).

You can tell by the colour and texture of your snot whether you have a cold or allergy, and at what stage.

It's true that if you go to London, your snot turns black. This, I also know from experience.

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Indian stories

I once tried to read Vikram Seth's A Suitable Boy. I never knew it was possible to write so many words about shoe-making. It's a huge bible-sized thing which I gave up on about one third of the way through.

Better luck was had with Meera Syal. Her Life's not all ha ha hee hee was funny and sad, sort of a Hindi merger between Sex and the City and Bridget Jones' Diary.

It was to be expected though, knowing that she's worked on Goodness Gracious Me. Anyone who has seen that skit where a crowd of drunken Indian diners go to an English restaurant and demand "the blandest thing you've got" and "loads of chips" could only expect good things from her.

At the moment I'm really enjoying Q and A, a first novel by Vika Swarup. You can't accuse the guy of having a frighteningly large vocabulary, he sure does tell a good story. It's about an uneducated young Indian man with an unusual name - Rama Mohammed Thomas. He unexpectedly answers all 12 questions correctly in TV quiz show, but the TV guys are reluctant to award him the one billion rupee prize, so they arrest him for cheating instead. So to show how he knew all the answers, he tells the story behind each one.

It seems to me that Indian stories are so much less depressing than Chinese stories. Except for the film Fire - or was it Earth? The one set during the time of the Partition.

Friday, March 11, 2005

It's not how I remembered it

Marion Zimmer Bradley, now deceased, wrote tons of science-fictiony books about a planet called Darkover. She also wrote the Arthurian The Mists of Avalon, but I never got around to reading that.

I read a lot of her Darkover books when I was younger, because I liked science fiction but there wasn't an awful lot of feminist science fiction around. By feminist I don't mean political diatribes thinly disguised as fiction - I'm talking about stories where female characters had a lot of power which had nothing to do with their sexual attractiveness, were immersed in exciting adventures and didn't have to wear metal brassieres. The Darkover books were the first time I'd come across the genre.

In a post-Buffy-novel search for something to read at the library, I remembered how much I'd enjoyed the Darkover novels and decided to get one out to read. I didn't remember having read Darkover: Landfall before, so this was the book I brought home.

What a disappointment. Maybe it was written before she got into her groove, or after she lost interest in the series. I dunno. I found it really dated and pre-feminist. There weren't any busty metal-clad warrior maidens - they would have added a Xena-like touch if nothing else. But the characters were like something out of a particularly uninspiring Seventies movie - sort of an unsatirical Stepford Wives.

I should have known that sometimes you just can't go back.

Who cut the lifeline?

It was a bit disheartening this afternoon to find that Jon is the only person who loves me enough to comment on my blog today. Then I realised that probably no-one can, because I haven't been able to comment on anyone else's either unless they have Haloscan. So I put away the razor blades.

I think I'll add Haloscan to the blog, so that people can comment even when Blogger comments is throwing a wobbly. Of course, this means that I will know for sure if no-one loves me any more.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Ten fairly interesting things about me

All's quiet on the baby front, and now that I no longer work in a public library I have no amusing library anecdotes to offer. So I'm falling back on that hoary old chestnut - the list of interesting 100 things. In my version however, there will only be ten, because I'm sure I can't think of 100 interesting things (nothing that I'd tell you all about anyway)...

1. I used to wear coke-bottle-bottom spectacles. Then I put my eyes through huge amounts of suffering i.e. contact lenses, before getting corrective laser surgury. So, in a way, I have already succumbed to the Extreme Makeover dream.

2. I bought my house when I was twenty four, and I only did it to get out of living at home. My mother was so upset at my imminent departure from her walls that, when the real estate agent turned up to collect my deposit on the new house, she harangued him at the front doorway for half an hour. Meanwhile, I hid in my bedroom and only appeared when I started feeling sorry for him.

3. I'm allergic to house-dust mite poo, cats and mould. Food allergens include chicken, carrots and eggs. But I eat ice cream and cake anyway.

4. Someone (male) once bought me a sex toy, on a whim. It's now so well-hidden that I must remember to throw it away before the boy and I start cleaning out the spare room/nursery.

5. Although I concede that Johnny Depp is quite a studly speciman of manhood, I only watch his movies because I think he chooses really good movies to be in. Except for The Man who Cried, which was extremely boring.

6. One of my all-time favourite movies is Don Juan de Marco, starring...Johnny Depp.

7. I must be one of the few people who have tried to read The Da Vinci Code and found it a load of rubbish.

8. Although I spent fifteen years of my working life in IT, I am hopeless when it comes to fixing anything to do with my computer. I also have trouble programming a VCR (any VCR, just pick one and I will be as confused as hell).

9. I'm only five feet tall, but the boy is six feet two. This is only a problem when we try to slow-dance. But it's a wonder that no-one has ever mistaken us for one of those dodgy white man/young Asian girl couples you see in Thailand or Sri Lanka.

10. When I was in primary school I was such a goody two-shoes that one afternoon, I was the only one who did not have to stay in after school. Okay I'm not proud of it, but it happened. And I've become less of an embarrassment since.

I have a (mostly) female brain

I did a version of this quiz in an Alan Pease book (Why men don't listen and women can't read maps), and was a little disturbed that my brain-gender score was way over in the male range. So it's a relief that I may not a male brain trapped in a female body after all.

Your Brain is 60.00% Female, 40.00% Male

Your brain is a healthy mix of male and female
You are both sensitive and savvy
Rational and reasonable, you tend to keep level headed
But you also tend to wear your heart on your sleeve

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Napier sure is purdy...

Here y'go - some photos taken over the weekend.

Sort of LA-like; the road to and from Napier Posted by Hello

Another impressive view of Marine Parade Posted by Hello

A seal in a puddle at Marineland Posted by Hello

A nice little lily pond at the park Posted by Hello

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Napier without a hat

Boy, was it hot.

It was so hot that I truly regretted forgetting to pack our sunhats.

It was so hot that our walks along Marine Parade only lasted about half an hour before we had to head back to our fan-cooled motel unit.

It was so hot that I decided to forgo the mini-golf, the only game I can beat the boy at.

Of course, now that we're back in the relative coolness of home, I miss the hot sun.

When we did get out though, we had a great time. We visited the National Aquarium to see all the fishies, watched performing sea mammals at Marineland and very nearly went swimming with the dolphins (they were booked out). We gave the Ocean Spa a miss because I'm not allowed to soak in hot water, otherwise it would've been a must-do.

It turned out that the boy was right about the affect of the One Day Cricket International - our first night was in a tiny, stuffy room in a bed 'n' breakfast (though it run by a lovely Dutch woman with cute kids and a white floppy-eared rabbit; it kinda made up for it), all that was available. But our next two nights were in a spacious beachfront motel unit just minutes from all the main attractions.

There were interesting sights on the way there and back, too. Like the windfarm at Woodville ("the windfarm capital of New Zealand), with the hynotic view of giant windmills twirling about on the ridge. And the fact that the welcome sign outside Dannevirke has a picture of a Viking on it. Did we have Vikings in New Zealand?

I just love being a tourist.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Cross-gender considerations before leaving for Napier

Well, it looks like we're going to go straight to Napier after all (yay!), and take the chance of a potential accomodation shortage. I'm hoping we can get something nice on The Parade, because according to the map there's a mini-golf course around there, as well as the Aquarium, the Museum and the Library (and the beach).

Whilst waiting for the boy to get ready for the big day ahead, I was reading The Green Fairy's latest post, which asks this question:

If you woke up one morning in the body of the opposite sex, what would you do?

After I'd gotten over freaking out completely, I would probably have to break the horrible news to the boy - before stealing some of his clothes.

Hopefully I'd be in the body of a tall man; if I were to stay five feet tall, my next concern would be to find a pair of platform shoes and a sports car.

I'd definitely want to take advantage of the higher metabolism that men generally have, and eat whatever I want (oh wait...that's what I've been doing for the last four months...) and stay up all night.

Then I'd have to start practising chatting up women (or men, if my sexuality stays the same) and acting like I know everything and care about nothing.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Napier or not

This post was going to be all about how much I'm looking forward to us taking off for Napier tomorrow. I think we may have been foiled though, by the international one day cricket match which is on tomorrow (don't ask me who's playing - probably NZ v.s. someone else). There could be a shortage of accomodation, and the place could be full of cricket hooligans with armloads of ammunition (for throwing at the opposition).

We should probably just go anyway - how many people could possible want to go to Napier to watch a cricket match, especially when there's national dragon-boating champs right here. Surely all the traffic will be heading in the opposite direction from us.

We could stop somewhere halfway along and then go on to Napier on Sunday - but there are only cow-poke towns between here and there as far as I can tell. We could go somewhere else entirely, but it took us so long to decide to go to Napier - there isn't enough time left this summer to think of an alternative.

An artist's life

I had a chat today with someone I know from life drawing classes, back when I used to do them. He's what I would call your classic artist, by which I mean that he's very passionate about his art to the point where he has little interest in anything else. Just like that old guy whom Carrie went out with, in the last episodes of Sex and the City.

I really admired his focus and his belief in himself and his work. But I sure couldn't live the way he does.

The fact is, I'm more of a dabbler - both in ability and in interest. That, and the fact that I'm still working on my self-confidence, make me the polar opposite of my artist acquaintence.

It must take a lot of self-belief to continue being a full-time artist who does not manage to sell a single item after 500 people have been through your studio in one weekend. He's still into it, and refuses to change his style and produce more trendy work. Good for him.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Yet more baby clothes

I brought home the first lot of borrowed baby clothes the other day, which my mum had thoughtfully washed for me. On the one hand I feel like I'm tempting fate by gathering all those little pants, shirts, cardigans and all-in-one suits when I'm still less than halfway through gestation. On the other hand maybe that's just me being superstitious and I may as well starting transporting them while I'm not to big to drive.

And speaking of baby clothes - punky baby clothes in particular - I see that the fashion pages of today's DominionPost includes a sample of some cute items which are available here in NZ. Rock Your Baby has mostly cutesy gear, but I did like the Little Anarchist t-shirt/beanie/etc (25 bucks Australian or 27 bucks New Zealand) and the Funky Little Dude set (30 bucks Aus. or 32 bucks NZ). A little more accessible to non-punks like myself, and a whole lot less expensive too.

Well, that's all from me - I'm off to move my bum muscles.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

When sitting is not restful

It's got to be a pregnancy thing, yet I haven't come across this affliction in any of the literature nor have I seen it written on any blog posts relating to pregnancy.

I cannot sit down for more than twenty minutes without getting a sore bum.

This afternoon at work I just caught myself in time before I started to groan with discomfort. I'm sure it's not a good look to be groaning at work (unless one is a professional tennis player).

It's also affecting my evenings and days off, because three of my favourite activities involve sitting for long periods of time - reading and writing blogs, watching tv and DVDs, and reading.

Aside from frequent bum massages (the boy is usually happy to oblige, but only if I ask him at home), I don't know how to solve this one. Standing is worse, and lying down is so...slothful.

Babies at the movies

Apparently, there is a cinema which encourages mums to take their screaming, crying and squawking babies. This is a good thing, if it stops them from attend screenings in which the patrons actually want to hear what's going on.

If this idea is picked up in my town, I'll probably give it a go - but only if it's a movie I'm not itching to see, and don't mind paying not to hear.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Punk clothes for babies

The boy is showing signs for true cluckiness at last - he has sent me a link to a site which specialises in baby gear with a punk/goth/metal theme. The Cradle Rocks based in Seattle (and you thought Seattle was boring, Jon?), so I'm surprised there wasn't anything even remotely grungy.

I've never been into punk, goth or metal; I was more into the jangly guitars of the Flying Nun label (e.g. The Chills, Frally). But the boy has often mentioned his spell in a punk rock band and his Goth youth, so I had to at least have a squizz at what's on offer.

I have to say that I found the G is for Goth raglan long-sleeve t-shirt very cute, the Punk Rock pants adorable and the Tattoo Print lounge shirt really quite appealing.