Monday, May 30, 2011

The New Workout Plan

I am the crappiest, happiest runner around. I run around the Carlton gardens twice and then back home. This is not very far, but I love it!! I run past the museum and think about how I would like to go there to visit the little bower bird who has his blue-things nest in the forest. Today I ran over all the autumn leaves.

Here's what I listened to today:

'This Charming Man'- The Smiths (warm-up, walking)
'Lose Yourself'- Eminem (running now)
'Harlem River Blues'- Justin Townes Earl
'Every little thing she does is magic'- The Police
'Let Her Dance' Bobby Fuller Four (walking break)
'She plays yo-yo with my mind' Sonny and the Sunsets.
'Don't think twice'- Bob Dylan
'The New Workout Plan'- Kanye West

and for the grand finale (running home) 'I got you babe'- Sonny and Cher

I try to pick tracks that either naturally match my running pace ('Lose yourself'; also 'Survivor' by Destiny's Child) or tracks that I love so much that I know the singer would be disappointed if I stopped running during their song ('I got you babe').

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Bereft, anxious, relieved.

This week I am:
1. Bereft. I have finished Friday Night Lights, and no amount of listening to The National's 'Boxer' on repeat is going to bring it back. The sun-drenched Texan football fields!! People who struggle!! The music of Explosions in the Sky!!

2. Anxious, after reading Tina Fey's memoir 'Bossypants'. I love Liz Lemon because she is a plausibly imperfect high-achiever. She has a great job but she has lettuce on her sweater and a room full of unopened Ikea furniture boxes. She doesn't have it all!!! But it seems that the real Tina Fey *does* have it all. And apparently you get it all by working all night
whilst your toddler sleeps in the next room, and then making your toddler breakfast in the morning before going off to work again.

3. Relieved. Our book club met on Sunday, and this means that I don't have to try to read 'Wolf Hall' anymore. That book did nothing for me. Although, as housemate Andrew pointed out, if I were on the First Tuesday Bookclub, I would have to read the entire book even if I didn't like it.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Housemates- a brief diversion

In an awesome development, a new girl is renting Ghita's room whilst she's overseas. HER NAME IS LAURA PALMER.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Housemates part 2

In 2005 I lived with Pen and Stu in a house next to Rose Chong's costume shop in Fitzroy. My room was at the very front of the house and I was plagued by snatches of conversations of people walking past my window. Worst were the suburban tourists making their way to Ladro's for a fancy pizza meal:

"It's so hard to find a park! It's all permit parking!"
"That's because the people around here don't have garages!!"

That's right, we had no garage. But we had a lovely courtyard and a sunny kitchen.

Pen: well, clearly I'd lived with her before. And to be honest it was a relief to move in with someone who had the same cleaniness standards as me. (which i would classify as 'moderate'. Moderately clean and occasionally very clean).

Pen's most notable habit was her penchant for running around the house naked. She liked to clean the kitchen and bathroom in her undies and a large pair of rubber gloves. She was always running to the bathroom in only her underpants, and then would yelp and grab her boobs if I came out of my room. This made it difficult to bring new boys home.

Stu taught us to pack a rugby scrum. He loves to drink scotch and every month or so I would come home to find him sitting on the couch looking somewhere between smug and guilty, nearly-empty bottle on the coffee table. He introduced me to 'Six Feet Under' and graphic novels.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Housemates: a Retrospective

I am becoming increasingly reserved about telling my work colleagues that I live in a share house. Most of them have bought houses in Eltham, and the rest live in rented apartments with their partners whilst they save for houses in Eltham. I have received some pretty strong reactions to the revelation that I share a house with at least four others: "But where do you wash your CLOTHES?!?"**

Meanwhile- and I say this because I know it won't last- I live in a mansion! With a conservatory and a cellar!! With talented and interesting housemates!! So to the sharehouse sceptics, I say this: wouldn't your life be more interesting with housemates?? Wouldn't you be more interesting (and AT LEAST AS CLEAN) with housemates?

My first sharehouse was a small place in Flemington, a former bootmakers workshop on a roundabout in a beautiful tree-lined street. It felt terribly Ivy League compared to my friends' Brunswick digs, even though I could see through the gaps in the bricks to the street outside.

My first housemate was Kate, the cellist. When she dug the spike of her cello into the polished floorboards, the entire house shook with Bach. She drank gin and planted rosemary. She also introduced me to healthy oat-based breakfasts, a habit I maintain to this day! Kate was one year older than me but seemed about a lifetime ahead of me in terms of knowing how to live.

Felicity joined us two weeks after we'd moved in. She had just finished her honours in physics and was waiting to start a PhD in Austria. She would sit next to the heater knitting knee warmers, elbow warmers and arm warmers- all manner of woollen tubes. She was very crafty, and our house was very cold. Flic had the smallest room in the house and her bed was surrounded by towers of boxes. She once had a nightmare that the boxes toppled over and crushed her, and that Katie and I had to pull her mangled body from the mess.

One of Felicity's colleagues was the first person to successfully teleport a photon!! When she told Kate and I, we laughed at her for hours, making terrible jokes about teleporting ourselves into uni. But it turned out to be true.

Felicity moved to Innsbruck and was replaced by Huw, a pianist and student of art history. He hung a colander on his bedroom wall as installation art and listened to Zorn. In summer he got together with one of his uni tutors. I was very suspicious of the whole affair until I got up one Sunday morning and saw a lanky man sitting in garden in the pouring rain, wrapped in Huw’s tiny dressing gown, holding an umbrella in one hand and a cigarette in the other, a book resting in his lap. They were meant to be together!

In 2003 Kate moved to Zagreb to play the cello and was replaced by Bobby, who was studying creative arts. We were very very different: she got up at 5am to go to work, listened to Coldplay and was terribly good at both drawing and being skinny.

Dave also joined us in 2003- he was doing his final year of a mechatronics degree. His major project involved programming a ball to roll autonomously. I never really fully understood what this meant. Periodically he would rush from his room to demonstrate the latest breakthrough with the ball. Once he rushed out of his room in the morning in only his underpants pursued by a sparrow which had crept in through the window. Amongst other things, Dave taught me to cook an omelette properly (ie with runny bits in the middle).

Dan (2004) is another engineer. He took an engineer's approach to the smallest bedroom in the house, constructing a high bunkbed under which he could store a desk and clothes. After some initial testing of the bed, he installed a rail.


**In the washing machine. I wash my clothes in the washing machine.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Mad lady skillz (or how I wish I could sew)

I went to my friend Arla's baby shower today. It was great, she got a huge surprise, but did not actually go into labour.

Olivia, the hostess, showed us the curtains she had made for her bedroom. They're fantastic, they look like they've been professionally made. Eve had crocheted a baby blanket (AND has made her own curtains). Bonita, of course, was wearing an outfit she'd made herself. Arla is making her own baby's clothes. I wish I could do things like that!!

I think that I have spent too long studying the books and not enough time learning the things. (Admittedly, reading books and reading about books are pretty much my favourite things). My practical skills are now centred almost entirely around emergency medicine- eg putting in a central line, reducing a fracture, removing a foreign body from eye. Moreover, most of these things require me to be in a certain location with specialist equipment.

One day I will learn to use a sewing machine.