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Cows are naturally curious.

Anyone who’s ever had anything to do with cows will be familiar with these pictures. Quite often when I’m out cutting firewood with my chainsaw I’ll turn around and see a semi-circle of cows just standing and looking. These guys are pretty young, what we would call yearlings. I took the pictures yesterday while I was walking around the property. They’re not mine incidently, they belong to my neighbour Brett, who breeds them.


“Hey guys, come check this out. It looks like the guy who lives on the other side of the fence”


“You know what? I think you may be right, but let’s get another opinion”


“Yessir, that sure does look like him, you fellas agree?”

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Free at Last Pt 3. (postscript)

If you haven’t read Part 1 or Part 2 this won’t make much sense, so you should probably read at least Part 2 first. If you were me, at this point you should be asking “What the hell is the title of this multi part post all about?”

Under normal circumstances after having a falling out with someone, especially family as you may have to see them again at some time, you would expected the rise in adrenalin levels to trigger a range of emotions: anger, frustration, guilt, sorrow. I had driven no more than 100 yards when I was overcome by one emotion and one only, a total sense of elation.

Over and over again, as I began to appreciate the gift I had just been given, a phrase that Martin Luther King used to great effect in the ‘60s, and Jesse Jackson to a much lesser degree much later (when he tried to turn the freeing of a captured American aircrew into a sideshow) kept repeating in my head: “Free at last. Free at last. Good God almighty I’m free at last!”

Free at Last! Pt 2 (the story)

If you’ve just joined us you should read the background first, otherwise let us continue. So I’m driving back to my place in good spirits, having not only picked up the car part but also a whole heap of breakfast cereal and flavoured milk. A friend’s wife (she’s my friend too) works for the company that makes it, and she always seems to have some to give me.

The only thing putting a damper on the trip was whether to stop at my brother’s or not, I really don’t like stopping because the place never has a positive atmosphere and it makes the trip at least an hour longer. Although I have an hour to mull it over, it’s only as I approach their house that I decide to call in.

Great! My brother is out with his son picking up something for the toxic bitch but will be back in 5 minutes, so it looks like I’ll have to talk to her. After the initial 10 minutes had passed, during which time she regaled me with tales of my brother’s inadequacies and character faults she made a coffee and we sat down to chat. My brother used to engage in character assassination of her until about ten years ago, when I told him that it was between them and leave me out of it.

We’d been chatting for about five minutes when her cell phone rang; it was her son sending her a text message with a picture of a storage box asking if it was the one she wanted. As she was texting him back she got a call from my brother and they sorted everything out. She then turned to me waiting for some kind of adulation at how technologically savvy she was. I gave none. So to highlight the point she told me about how she was able to call her daughter in school last week. Now here’s where it starts to get interesting. “I really don’t think that cell phones should be used while a lesson is in progress”, I said in a conversational manner.

“You don’t have kids so you wouldn’t know how important it is to be able to keep in touch” she retorted. Thanks for reminding me I don’t have kids, I’d completely forgotten. “Nevertheless, I don’t think anything could be that important as to interrupt a class” I replied (yes I actually said nevertheless).

“Well my teacher had to use his in class last week because he’s going to teach in Abbu Dabbi and he had to arrange his flight” shot back the rebuff, the volume rising slightly. Ah, this must be that guy you told me about three times in the last 4 weeks (instant messenger), the one who is a cross between Mohatma Ghandi and Albert Einstien. “That doesn’t seem all that critical to me, he could have done that when the class wasn’t in session”, was my implacable reply.

“But he had to…” she blurted. Yes I know, he had to book a flight. “I think we’re going to have to agree to disagree on this one” I said interrupting her. Ah no, she was having none of that and rather than do a ‘she said, I said’ description for the next 3 pages I’ll just give you the précis.

The next two times she started to talk (repeating the same point), I stopped her and said that we weren’t going to reach an accord so let’s just accept that we disagree. But to no avail, she was like a dog with a bone, but unfortunately without an argument. She then informed me that the teachers don’t teach the same as when I was in school, after all, this was TAFE (Technical and Further Education. These are trade schools that occasionally do special interest courses which she has been taking). And she was right, teachers aren’t the same as when I was in school, but they are the same as when at 33 yrs old I applied to, sat an entrance exam for, was accepted into and completed a Science degree in computers at Newcastle University. But I guess she forgot that.

Now she’s really starting to get riled, I realized that contrary to my understanding of things, it was not acceptable for me to have my own opinion on the subject. Unbelievably she tries for a fourth time to tell my about this guy booking a flight, it was at this point that I calmly said “I don’t care about him. I’m not trying to change your view and you’ve got no chance of changing mine. If you’re going keep going until I agree, let’s save time – I’m not going to agree with you. This is why I keep suggesting that we agree to disagree”.

Well shit! She went ballistic. She then mistook me for her son and told me that I could just wait till my brother got home and talk to him and stormed off. Are you kidding? You’ve just given me the opportunity of a lifetime! You’ve just given me permission to never have to deal with your sorry ass again.

So without another word, I grabbed the dogs, walked to my car got in and drove away. There is one more little bit but the post is already too long so I’ll put it in a postscript tomorrow.

Free at last ! Pt 1. (the background)

Before I even turned on the computer, I knew this would be too long to put in one post. Some people write really long stuff (some are good, most are just long) but I tend to zone out trying to read them so I like to keep mine a bit shorter. Maybe if I keep talking about the post rather than actually writing it, there will be enough for three parts instead of the planned two.

One thing before I start; if you are looking for a funny story this one’s not for you, you might prefer something like this one. However, if you’re looking for something to confirm that you’re not the only one that comes from a dysfunctional family, then read on.

Just one more thing and I’m not certain whether it belongs in the preamble or the main story. It probably should go here at the end of the preamble and the start of the story.

An aspect of my life that I don’t discuss unless it’s relevant is the fact that despite MDW (my darling wife) and I having a stable, secure, long term marriage. Despite that in 26 years we’ve had only 3 arguments (all minor, less than 3 minutes). And despite the fact that we love each other and get along really well, we live 150 miles apart. We jointly own both houses and neither of us consider this to be any form of separation. It is relevant now is because this little drama happened today on the way back from the Central Coast house, where MDW lives. Yes, one of the houses is only 15 minutes drive to the beach.

It’s a three hour drive between our two houses, and on Thursday I received a call telling me that a car part I had ordered had arrived at a dealership about a 2 minutes walk from MDW’s place, so I drove down Friday to pick it up and stayed overnight. This morning I headed back here. My brother lives between us, about 2 hours from me and 1 hour from MDW, (I actually have to drive past his house).

I agonise every time have go to the Coast over whether to stop and say hello. On the one hand I don’t like to be discourteous and just ignore him, but by the same token I’d prefer not to have to deal with his bitch of a wife. We’re talking 100% prime bitch, and not just your normal bitch, but a prickly, thin skinned, self absorbed, ill informed, highly opinionated, nasty and most importantly, stupid bitch.

Ahh, that feels better. So that’s the background, the story will be posted tomorrow.

If the cap fits, analyse it.

I came across this today while I was scanning some old negatives. It’s one of my favourite baseball caps (I’ve got heaps). I like if for several reasons

  • the graphic is quite evocative for a humble baseball cap (click on it for a better look)
  • it combines music, cowboys and baseball (how could you not love it)
  • I played both baseball and harmonica (one of them semi-professionally)
  • it lets me put the word baseball in four different points (counting this one)

It’s a matter of taste.

To my mind, when you’re thirsty there’s nothing better than a nice cold glass of coke with a few ice blocks and a slice of lemon floating on top. My four legged housemates on the other hand lean towards a bowl of water, and for garnish they prefer a mouse floating on top. But then there’s no accounting for taste.


And no, the little guy isn’t swimming, he’s shuffled off this mortal coil.

Speaking of coils, I read the other day that some people are like slinkies: they’re not really useful for anything but you do feel good when you push them down a set of stairs.

My new avatar.

I saw this while I was aimlessly wasting time today and just had to have it for my profile pic. It has taken two really funny guys and morphed them into one (mind you, I’d find it funnier if Dubya wasn’t the CiC of the world’s most powerful military force). Moe Howard and Dubya Bush both have an air of menace about them, and both have been known to do inappropriate things with their fingers. On top of that, our fearless leader has the last name of Howard to so it fits on many levels.