Archive for October 2005

My life as a soap opera: Episode XXIV

So tonight I went out with some friends. Lets call them A, B, and C. Actual identities are irrelevant, except to say that B is an ex-shag, and C is from Brisbane and recently broke up with his boyfriend of many years, D.

A was meeting up with a boi he’d shagged last night, E. We of course all tagged along, and ended up in stonewall together.

Later in the night, I saw someone I’ve known (distantly) for quite a while, F. Shortly after, I saw F speak to E – slightly amusing, but not a huge surprise as F is quite the social butterfly.

Shortly afterwards again, I saw G walk in. G is someone that I’ve met before who’s well-known to B. G stopped by the door and chatted briefly to F, then wandered over and said hi to B.

While this was going on, I didn’t notice, but F had slipped away. C, in the meantime, had gone missing, so I had to look for him. Eventually, I found him talking to F. It transpires that C knew F many years ago, and C is friends with D. F alerted C to the fact that D was in town, and likely to be in Stonewall at some point..

Thus did F become the central character of my night: he knows one friend’s ex, another friend’s ex’s friend, and the third friend’s recent shag.

I later saw pictures of C’s ex. and realised that he looked a lot like F’s ex’s ex.

Even worse, I realised that F’s ex’s ex is also the ex of my second-most recent shag.

I’m going to bed now.. figuring out all those connections hurt my brain. G’night!

iTunes Music Woes

so iTMS is finally here in australia.

Woop de doo.

I don’t want to make a purchase just yet, but I had a look anyway.

I noticed that there is a Weekly Free Download on offer. Not something I’d normally go for, but hey, it’s free..

or at least, it says it’s free – but I can’t download it because I can’t provide details of a credit card that currently has credit.

Apple, why do you need me to provide you with full details – including number, security code, full name, and billing address – of a credit card in order to take advantage of a “free download”?

Even more disturbing – why, when I provide all these things to you, do you still refuse to allow me to download simply because my card doesn’t have any available credit right now?

Pride, prejudice, and a bit of a general ramble, really.

Saw PaP tonight.

Was moderately impressed with Keira K. Was less than impressed by the Dame – she’s such a better actress than that, why was she wasting her time with that trivial role? (Side note -see Iris. Is fantastic).

Probably the most impressive character though was Mr Bennet; if only because he was so invariant throughout the whole proceeding.

My summary: I get the impression that the book had rather a lot of material that has been skimped, skipped, and completely elided; this is probably okay if you’ve read the book, seen the TV adaptation, or any of the previous movies (I know there was at least one, I suspect there were more) or even read a plot summary. However, I’d done none of these.

The net effect was that the storyline would move along at quite a sedate pace, then rapidly skip forward so fast that I was left wondering what had happened – then meander along sedately again for a while.

I was very dissapointed at the end. Boy meets girl; Boy loses girl over some trifling misunderstandings; Girl explains to boy in detail what he did wrong; Boy methodically sets about ameliorating his wrongs; Girl falls head over heels in love. *yawn*. I thought someone said Jane Austen was a wonderful, delicate writer who wrote intricate novels about human relationships? Hrmm…

There were, in fact, 5 relationships between 5 humans that did intrigue me throughout the movie.

Firstly, there was the relationship between myself and the boy who was seeing the movie with me. This relationship is intriguing because it’s arisen in a manner different to any relationship I’ve had before; and also because I don’t yet know where it will lead – or even where I want it to lead.

Secondly, there were the 4 relationships between the three gentlemen in front of me. All seemed very affectionate and close with all.. but after the movie, after a brief group huggy-kissy session in front of the cinema, the three went their seperate ways.

Also intriguing are a few other relationships that have sprung into being lately; yet another chef, one with a northerner, and.. well, I’ve already mentioned the other.

I’m still trying to figure out how to balance work, maintaining existing relationships, exploring new relationships, and maintaining a healthy bank balance. this is something that is surely only going to get easier over the next few months – in fact, my calculations show that around April next year it should get dramatically easier. I’m looking forward to it immensely.

While I’m here and rambling, I may as well mention that it appears that my living arrangements will be changing around mid next year. My current flatmate will at that time be travelling overseas for siz months or so. I’ve not yet decided if I wish to remain where I am (but, obviously, in the master bedroom) and sublet the second bedroom, or if I wish to move elsewhere. I’m very open to suggestions..

mrmm… and I want to get some pet rats, too. I miss my old rats, they were wonderful.

Lastly, I’ve finished Knife of Daggers. Stay tuned for a mini-review shortly.

I'd like to draw your attention to…

this lecture by Malcom Fraser.

In particular, the following:

We are the only democratic country, I am advised, to legislate for the detention of people whom the authorities do not suspect of any wrong doing or even of any wrong thought.

In Australia, any of us can be detained merely because authorities believe we might know something that we don’t even know we know. The authorities do not have to believe we are guilty of any crime, or are planning any crime, or have consorted with any suspicious persons. How could such a law be drafted by the Government and supported by the Labor opposition? You can be detained for one week but then on a new warrant, another and another and another week. Unless it is approved in the original warrant, and why would ASIO do that? – you are not allowed to contact your wife, your husband, your child, your mother, your father and of course not a lawyer.

If you don’t answer ASIO’s questions satisfactorily, you can be charged and subject to 5 years in jail. But the law is reasonable, it goes on to say that if you don’t know anything, then it’s not an offence not to tell ASIO anything!!! But you have to prove you didn’t know anything and so the “onus of proof” is reversed.

You can be asked to produce a paper and if you don’t, you also go to jail on prosecution for 5 years but the law goes on to say, being fair-minded again, if you don’t have such a paper, it’s not an offence not to produce it but you have to prove that you didn’t have it. How do you prove that you do not have something that you do not even know exists!!! Again, the “onus of proof” is reversed.

If a journalist heard that you had been detained and sought to report it, he would go to jail for 5 years. If a detained person were released and talked to anyone about his or her experiences, subject to prosecution, five years in jail.

An unusual day

Today was quite an unusual day.

For a start, it was a monday, but not a work day – hurrah for public holidays. This of course meant a BBQ at a friends place, followed by an afternoon of sitting around.

It was an interesting day for a few reasons. I reconnected with someone I’ve felt a bit detached from lately. I realised, again, that this person is quite probably the person most like me in my immediate social circle.

I tried, and failed, to reach out and get to know someone else.. fortunately the failure wasn’t fatal, but I’ve missed a great chance. To reach out in future is going to take more concerted effort, and the cooperation of a few intermediaries.

Most curiously of all, I realised that something I thought I firmly knew about myself was false, and embarked on a strange (for me) course which, whatever happens, will provide some interesting learning experiences.

Oh, I also had cheese sandwhiches and pumpkin soup for lunch.

Why some gay "Christians" bother me and some don't.

For a while now, I’ve been bothered by an apparent hypocrisy I’ve noticed in my own behaviour: some people who identify as both gay and Christian bother me, and some don’t.

Today, I realised why this is so, and I feel much less troubled as a result.

The ones who don’t bother me are probably best exemplified by my friend Mal. Mal identifies as…. well, something other than heterosexual, anyway. Mal also identifies as Christian.

Those who do bother me are, typically, Catholics – or say they are, anyway. I shan’t name any names here – largely because I can’t, as I’ve tended not to pay much attention to these people, so can’t call any to mind right now. This is not to say that all people who identify as gay and Catholic bother me..

The difference is simple: Mal understands what he means when he says he’s Christian. Mal has examined his beliefs and come to his own understanding of what it means to be Christ-like.

In contrast, those who bother me have not examined their own faith at all. They tend to say “I’m a Catholic” without understanding what that means. Often they’ve not attended any church services in years, if ever. They typically don’t have any knowledge of the book they claim their faith is based on, or the history, traditions, and policies of the church they claim to belong to.

(Updated to fix the link. I really should preview these things before I post)

Why podcasting will kill radio

Three simple reasons:

* Timeshifting. In essence, this means that you choose what content you listen to when – something traditional radio delivery can’t give you. Right now, I’m in the middle of reading a book, so most of my discretionary time is taken up with that. I’m not listening to many podcasts.. but am I missing anything? no! When I’m ready, I can pick up Dawn and Drew right where I left them – or, if I’d prefer, I can skip a few episodes and just catch up with the latest.

* Choice: Podcasting leverages the “long tail” possibilites that the Internet has made possible: instead of being limited to the 5 or 6 choices I have on broadcast radio in this geographic location, I can pick from any podcast anyone creates in the world – none are any harder to listen to.

* There is no third reason.

This post is a followup to an earlier post in which I took the contrary position.