Friday, November 30, 2007
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
It's the poet's birthday tomorrow, so I'm wrapping his 'please only give me things that are useful' presents and getting ready for our big day out tomorrow. I'll probably go to the post office in the morning and send off a box of Christmas presents to Australia to avoid the hideous Saturday morning queues. Don't even speak to me about Abbey National - routinely queues out the door.
Just read in Metro tonight that there is another form of MRSA that's not hospital-acquired. Maybe this will be the pandemic the NHS is busy preparing for, not bird flu after all. I really really hope not. Not bird flu, not community MRSA, not anything. No pandemic, ok.
Monday, November 26, 2007
I guess my internet community and livejournal experience, where you actually have a forum for discussion (that's not hidden under news feeds and who has friended who) and hearing about people's lives, probably made me a poor candidate for this kind of social networking site. Also, how do people have the time to do anything on Facebook except update their status and respond to all the invitations, pokes, growing gifts etc?
This Guardian article was the last straw. I'll keep my listing up, but I'll disable all of those applications.
Sunday, November 25, 2007
Saturday, November 24, 2007
A big shout out to London Transport for being so slow in getting me and the poet home from his reading at the Poetry Cafe in Covent Garden - an excellent night of poetry from Jacqueline Gabbitas and my poet, with wonderful jazz and blues. Somehow ended up talking about the upcoming Australian election with the singer (who is from New Zealand). I think that may well be the only conversation about politics I have ever willingly engaged in in my life, and I don't pretend to have said anything knowledgeable. I should vote, really, but I haven't for a few years (I've been in the UK 9 and a half) and I do vote in the UK elections.
p.s. Dammit. I was doing so well with the daily posting, it feels really unfair to be caught out by a time issue. If only I felt safe blogging at work.
(Does it count if I was composing this post all the way home in my head)
Thursday, November 22, 2007
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
My Beloved,2007 has been a year of worrying about my health, maybe it's because now that I'm 37 I am starting to notice the signs of ageing. There has been mega-worrying about my teeth, which I've never had any problems with at all, but I now have some acid erosion, which isn't terrible or uncommon, but damn. So I'm rather obsessive about not eating lots of food which is acidic, and rinsing my mouth after fruit. Also, I'd like to get my teeth whitened but am concerned about the possible long term effects, also the sensitivity. I would hate to have lovely white teeth for a while, only for them all to fall out in 20 years...
As you read this, I don't want you to feel sorry for me, because, I believe everyone will die someday.
And then I had a blocked ear from early August, which still hasn't cleared properly. No problems visible in two doctor visits and no real pain apart from occasional aching. Mystery. Strangely, I know several other people who've had ear issues recently, ongoing and mysterious like mine. Maybe there's some strange new virus around.
And just today, as the first period cramps from hell close in, I started to think about my ureters. Not that I often do, those poor neglected little tubes that run from my kidneys to my bladder. But it was relevant, I promise, because I have endometriosis, which happens to be on my ureters as well as other places. And I was in a Google kind of mood today, which was really reassuring. Like, renal failure reassuring. I shall think positive and since I haven't had any problems since surgery 4 years ago, I might just write to my consultant (I don't see her regularly as I don't really have much pain despite severe endo) and ask her if we should be monitoring those poor little tubes, especially if I decide to have a break from the continuous pill.
Not a particularly cheerful day, and I also made a silly non-work-related decision at work today, which I regret but felt right at the time. Hopefully it will all be ok.
But now, to finish as I began...
The last of my money which no one knows of is the huge cash deposit of Eleven Million Five Hundred Thousand Dollars that I have with a Security Home/Deport in United Kingdom for safe keeping. I will want you to help me collect this deposit and disburse it to some charity organizations and to the less privileged. While I await to hear from you the earliest possible time to enable me give you some guard lines on how to get the project done.reply me through my reached email.ok?
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
(I had my own BBDO last year when we caught a train to Ely with a friend and played tourists for the day, cream tea included. This year we were in Italy for my birthday, it was more like a Big Birthday Weekend.)
This year the poet has to take his mother to an appointment late morning, so we'll be kicking off later, but I figure we can still fit in a matinee theatre performance and then dinner at Chez Gerard, where I am hopelessly in love with their anchovy butter. The poet likes his steak, so we'll both be happy.
Monday, November 19, 2007
I could potentially enjoy a very limited run of this weather if I was in a beautiful hotel with lots of good books, fine food and comfortable windowseats looking out onto some rugged and/or picturesque countryside. But having to go to work in it is not fun.
A friend just reminded me of this search engine -
Apparently, if Google had a black screen, taking in account the huge number of page views, according to calculations, 750 mega watts/hour per year would be saved. Being the eco-friendly little bunnies we hope they are, in response Google created a black version of its search engine, called Blackle, with the exact same functions as the white version, but with lower energy consumption: http://www.blackle.com/
Sunday, November 18, 2007
At this time of year, when the days start to get cold, on the first really cold day I always think it can't possibly get any colder. Then it does. And I always think I can't possibly handle it getting any colder, being a born Queenslander, sub tropical native and all, but I do. I just wish it didn't have to be cold and dark. We have had some beautiful sunny days lately, I hope they continue throughout winter.
Saturday, November 17, 2007
For some reason, the new electronic display always say 'Bounces Road' when the 192 goes down Fotheringham Road. Granted, it is a pretty bumpy and bouncy ride, but I have no idea where Bounces Road even is. I pity the non-residents who get off there thinking they're somewhere else entirely.
The 192 is a single-decker.
Friday, November 16, 2007
This little one reminds me of the tiny tree frogs that lived on a locut tree behind our garage when I was a kid. They were so incredibly sweet. We would stand under the tree and look for shadows on the leaves, then carefully put our hand over the leaf and pick up the frog. I'm sure they really loved that.
Thursday, November 15, 2007
The organisation I work for is having its very first Christmas party ever this year. I'm kind of apprehensive. I don't like huge social gatherings. I will try to stick close to my friends and probably end up putting lots of faces to names and probably have a really good time.
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
The email I sent to a school who listed her as a staff member in 2005 reached her as she still works there.
Today I read in Metro that she wants to become a gay icon because 'Gay men love a strong woman and I think I fit the bill, don't you?' Um, Heather, I don't think you can tell gay men (or any other group) that you want to be their icon. An icon has to emerge because they value your qualities, not because you value your qualities and think they should too. Ok, probably iconship is carefully managed and marketed too, but still. Telling people you want to be their icon may not be the best way of going about it, especially if all you're in the media for currently is being really angry and vengeful.
Because she seems to be someone, like a lot of someone's in a society that is raising many of its children to aspire to being famous*, who is trying to cement her role in a celebrity-obsessed society so that the money keeps rolling in for doing very little except be seen
*Famous for what? you might ask. Oh, just famous. Because look at all the so-called celebrities who aren't famous for being wonderful actors, or accomplished musicians, or fascinating artists or witty writers, they're just famous because they were on a reality television show. What can they actually do? Who knows! Maybe nothing more than the averagely talented person in the street. Scary though the thought may be, maybe even less than that.
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Monday, November 12, 2007
If only everyone had a blog...
Whereas the truth is that fullness of soul can sometimes overflow in utter vapidity of language, for none of us can ever express the exact measure of his needs or his thoughts or his sorrows; and human speech is like a cracked kettle on which we tap rhythms for bears to dance to, while we long to make music that will melt the stars.
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Why is this? Why have so many of us lost a sense of public courtesy? We are richer than we have ever been but, equally, our sense of social obligation has never been weaker.I know I'm going to come across as a total Grumpy Old Woman with this post, but seriously, I'm noticing such a lack of respect for other people and one's environment in today's society. Just this afternoon, I went to the cinema and unfortunately sat in the same row as a couple who talked for a fair amount of time through the film, which has always been pretty much par for the course in our north London cinema. But did they really have to keep turning their mobile phones on and distracting me with the bright light of the screen? Maybe I'm becoming one of a minority who goes to a film to watch a film, not to talk and send text messages.
Then I walked over to B&Q to buy some last-minute crocus and tulip bulbs for the garden. Because I can never have too many spring flowers. Walking ahead of me were a couple of young boys, dropping fastfood wrappers in their wake. Ok, I understand that 'Keep Britain Tidy' is not as inspiring or convincing as 'Keep Australia Beautiful', but come on... didn't their parents teach them not to drop litter? And then, the piece de resistance. A motorcycle rider decided he didn't want to wait in traffic but instead drove across two pedestrian crossings and their accompanying traffic islands, narrowly missing pedestrians in the process. What is that about? Too many people just wanting to do what they want to do, go where they want to go with no thought for other people. 'Me and mine' above all else.
These days I'm not so game to challenge people on their antisocial behaviour, because mostly you get told to F off, oh, and didn't you know that these days you get stabbed for asking someone to stop throwing chips at your girlfriend? I did call security once when some teenagers were running riot through a screening of a film, literally running around the cinema, and that was satisfying. Luckily they weren't waiting outside for me afterwards.
Saturday, November 10, 2007
Mutual friends haven't heard from her. The email address she was using isn't valid anymore, neither is her parents' email address, which she was using for a while. I got no response from the wedding invitation mailed to her parents' home address.
So I've been thinking for a while of printing out a few 'Hi, how are you, but more to the point, where are you?' letters and sending them to her parents' home address (they might have moved), but also to all the primary schools, preschools, kindergartens and nurseries (last we knew she was an early childhood teacher) in the last town she mentioned as being 'home'. It's fairly likely she's no longer there, except that her son was at school there and she may have wanted to stay settled for that reason, but I don't really know where else to look. Google helped me with the name of a school she was working at in 2005 - but the site doesn't seem to have been updated since then. I might email the school with a request for a message to be passed on if she's still there. Maybe she doesn't want to be in contact with us anymore for some reason, or maybe she's lost all our contact info as well.
Friday, November 09, 2007
I saw my first famous person for a while today. Fiona Shaw (with Saffron Burrows I think - or a clone) waiting at the same bus stop as me in Camden Town. Actually, the only reason I realised this familiar-looking person was Fiona Shaw was because of her leggy companion. I saw Saffron a couple of years ago in Fresh and Wild in Soho. These little celebrity encounters remind me where I am. It doesn't happen so much in Brisbane.
Thursday, November 08, 2007
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
Even worse, sometimes he wants to utilise my occasionally impressive skills on Powerpoint or Word, or needs me to design an Excel spreadsheet to help him do his taxes. Worse than that, sometimes he pays me to help him with a project and that means I have to get it done to time, on his terms. He is a perfectionist of the highest order. Which is admirable, but sometimes maddening. Thank goodness my boss at work is not a perfectionist or I would be tearing my hair out. Most of our arguments centre around the computer, like there is some irritated, grumpy vortex that just pulls me in when we sit down to work on something together.
My pc is the internet pc in our house, which means the poet spends a fair amount of time on it doing his email. His pc is the inviolable virus-free-clean-zone machine that has never been breathed upon by a dirty modem. And I've just come home to catch a peek at his inbox where there is a lengthy email from someone he's working with, with several attachments, which is going to mean he will be at my pc working for some time to come when he gets home. Hence this blog post being typed now. (Actually, hence this blog post at all!)
On a cheerier and less whinging note, am I the only blogger to get unfeasibly excited by someone I don't know commenting on my blog? It's just as well really, as I seem to have no irl friends who use the internet for fun (I feel like a 17-year-old with no friends who own mobile phones) and so Married to a Poet is mostly a comment-free zone.
Tuesday, November 06, 2007
Disapproving Rabbits - A blog showcasing the disapproval of our bunny friends
Hello Kitty Hell - Who knew there was so much to share about Hello Kitty?
Cupcake Bakeshop - I don't bake cakes, I rarely even eat cupcakes, but I cannot resist this blog and the scrumptious photographs.
Also, check out the NaBloPoMo Randomizer (button just on the right). I seem to get a few repeats of blogs when I use it, but it's a great way of finding new sites to read. And let's face it, we can all do with a few more funny/witty/superbly photographed/insightful/silly blogs in our internet lives.
Oh, here is an Anne snippet of little or no importance - the poet and I have been watching Heroes on DVD. I think I'm falling into a space where I can only enjoy television series with a fantasy element. Here's hoping Joss Whedon's new show Dollhouse fits the bill, even if Eliza Dushku looks worrying like Heather Graham in that photo.
Monday, November 05, 2007
For someone in her nineties especially, that's pretty cool. With which succinct statement I cleverly illustrate just why I don't comment on art much.
Sunday, November 04, 2007
And yay for the lucrative power of positive thinking!
Thursday, November 01, 2007
Picture an old cobbled-street town on the bank of a huge lake. And in the middle of that lake, a tiny island that looks like it has been torn from the pages of a fairytale book, crammed with ancient buildings including a church that houses a saint in a glass box. Actually, he's mostly just bones now. Look up from the lake to the surrounding mountains, the Dolomites, some with faint snow caps, and beyond them to the Alps and Switzerland. Look down to the plate on the table in the little restaurant you are sitting in and lift your fork.
You have to do all that work because the photo really doesn't do it justice.
Not sure I have much to offer there, unless your poet is like mine - not recognisably a stereotypical poet i.e. not fey or sentimental. He's not a performance poet by the popular definition of the word which seems to equate pretty well with 'rapper'. But he is an incredible performer (he co-founded a group called Shadowork, who create amazing voice soundscapes) and he writes damn good poetry. He has published about seven books, two of which have sold out and one is in a second print. Oh, and he was a physicist first. And yet not geeky either. Come to think of it, he is all about not conforming to stereotype.
Anyway, here are some musings about poetry from a poet wife's perspective.
1. The poetry world, in the UK at least, is rather political, and it does increasingly seem who you know rather than the quality of your work that gets you readings and festival appearances and residencies and sometimes even published. This is a big frustration that you will probably come to share and wish you could blog about.
2. You cannot make a living by writing and publishing poetry alone. Maybe someone like Seamus Heaney can, or the few poets in the curious higher echelons who are at every festival, have agents and command high fees, but your average pretty successful poet is going to need a day job, or at least do a lot of freelance work. Teaching is popular, and there is an ever-growing hungry adult student body for creative writing classes and workshops (witness the rise of the creative writing MA in the UK) as well as all those kids in schools. Getting work on BBC radio is good, because they pay per minute.
3. If you write poetry yourself, and you become intimate with another poet, you may just feel the desire to start working in another genre if your loved one's mastery of the art makes you wonder why you bother. Or maybe that's just me.
4. You may arrive home from work, or return from being in another room to find a poem or several awaiting your audience. You may get a phone call which is a poem. You may surprise yourself at just how usefully critical your reading of poetry becomes.
5. You may find yourself reading poems written before the poet met you, and wishing they were written for you, or just that you had been around to give him/her a hug.
Like this one.
IF YOU WERE TO COME BACK
I'd stand at the door like one bereaved:Then I'd draw you in by both hands
Aghast and breathless,
With silence stretched between us
For a second
Before it snapped -
And my heart burst its banks
I'd kiss you on the mouth, on the face
Wear out your name
with soft saying
I'd kiss you more than you would want
Until you'd have to draw back, breathless
As one wounded
To try to speak, to tell me
Why it was you came.