2011 - A year in which I didn't go in the ocean

Adding another heading to the archives.

I was thinking about writing a list of things I've learnt from 2011. I've thought about this multiple times lately. I never bothered writing any of these things down. In fact, there's only one thing I remember from all those mental drafts: "To better brush your back teeth don't try and open your jaw as wide as possible. Open it less than the full range of motion and you will have better access to your wisdom teeth."
Let's all reflect on that for a moment.

We considered travelling to Sydney Harbour yesterday afternoon and setting up camp amongst the crowds to wait for the midnight fireworks. After saying it out loud the plan seemed pretty stupid, and instead we went out for tea in Hurstville and then came back home to watch the fireworks from our back deck. This was definitely the right decision. The deck actually faces the opposite direction to the city, but there were still plenty of fireworks to see being fired from the backyards all around us.
This, I pondered, was typically Sydney-ish. The city throws one of the biggest fireworks displays of New Year's Eve and everyone decides to put on their own fireworks display instead because, presumably, they can afford it and they can't be arsed dealing with crowds and CityRail.

The fact that everyone the news interviewed on the harbour yesterday was obviously a tourist gives more credence to this theory.


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The woman with the fake tan stepped into my office, sat across from my desk and lit a cigarette.
At least, she would, sometime in the next 20 minutes. Smelling the future has advantages, but precision isn’t one of them.


Seasonably Late

Well, Summer finally turned up, and instead of standing around looking sheepish it decided to remind us why it's a season we keep inviting around to our house for BBQs.

image 1095 from bradism.com


Casual Friday Breakfast II - Merging Fruits

I don't plan to make this a weekly event, but I did have the time and opportunity to produce a non-standard breakfast again this morning. We're still recovering from Christmas excess and I was determined to find a way to use up some of the left over fresh food before it went bad and World Vision ads made me feel guilty about my negligence.

After weighing up my choices of fruit, breads, salads and meats I decided I wanted to try blending all the left over fruit from the last week into a giant smoothie. This included half a honey dew melon, some week old nectarines, some giant mangoes Craig gave me and some frozen raspberries. I decided the best way to combine all these was going to require my blender.
If you're wondering what all fruits look like when layered in a blender with some vanilla yogurt, they look like this:

Warm fruit in a blender, unblended.


Yes, I too was slightly afraid that this was going to taste like the warm upchuck of an exhausted snub-nosed monkey after it was chased with a broom from a Chinese market's fruit stall. However, twenty minutes of slicing and skinning fruits made me stubborn enough to drink it. The taste wasn't off-putting, although I immediately regretted not adding a tray of ice to offset the warmth that ripening mangoes provide.

Pros:
Vitamins.

Cons:
The mango overpowered almost everything else, and was the main culprit for the warmth.

Improvement in Productivity:
This smoothie didn't improve my productivity as the preparation time meant I almost started work late. My concentration was about average.

Casual Friday Rating:
One colleague who brought a pavlova for morning tea to share and you don't really like the taste of pavlova but you decide to have a slice of it anyway because apples aren't on special at Woolworths that week and you decide the calories to dollars ratio outweighs the low glycaemic index value to dollars ratio out of five.


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Brisbane

XXXX Bitter in a tall glass.

Brisbane



My Mum sitting at an outdoor table with a fruity dessert.

BrisbMum

Sydney

This evening in Sydney I sat in a tiny capsule for ten minutes and travelled from Hong Kong to Greece.

The question I ask myself is, did I travel between continents, or back in time?

Art of the Brick Review

Yesterday I went to Sydney Town Hall.

Yesterday I went to Sydney Town Hall.



I went to an art exhibition called "Art of the Brick".</p>
<p>It was an art exhibition by an artist that explored many themes. Artistic themes. The fact that things were made of Lego and that I occasionally take photos of things I made out of Lego was a coincidence.

I went to an art exhibition called "Art of the Brick".

It was an art exhibition by an artist that explored many themes. Artistic themes. The fact that things were made of Lego and that I occasionally take photos of things I made out of Lego was a coincidence.



Inside I looked at works of art.

Inside I looked at works of art.



See, look at this piece of art. It is a Lego kangaroo made entirely out of orange. The message behind this piece is obvious, but takes a lot of thinking about.

See, look at this piece of art. It is a Lego kangaroo made entirely out of orange. The message behind this piece is obvious, but takes a lot of thinking about.



I am being a little cynical, there were some impressive and expansive pieces that would easily be categorised as "artistic" if they were constructed from some other material except for Lego.

I am being a little cynical, there were some impressive and expansive pieces that would easily be categorised as "artistic" if they were constructed from some other material except for Lego.



Unfortunately the artist used illegal building techniques on several occasions. That's probably because 99% of everything was made of bricks and tiles. That's restrictive.

Unfortunately the artist used illegal building techniques on several occasions. That's probably because 99% of everything was made of bricks and tiles. That's restrictive.



Tickets were . Was that worth it? I guess so. I assume all the proceeds go towards funding the guys gigantic Lego collection, and Lego isn't cheap. Just take a look at the gift shop that takes up the second half of the exhibit.

Tickets were . Was that worth it? I guess so. I assume all the proceeds go towards funding the guys gigantic Lego collection, and Lego isn't cheap. Just take a look at the gift shop that takes up the second half of the exhibit.

I don't really miss reviewing music


Steve McQueen by M83 on Grooveshark
M83's Steve McQueen, an epic electronic giant and one of 2011's best tunes. It's a track I've listed to half a dozen times this week. It's just an enormous, uplifting composition that makes you feel invincible. It's like the soundtrack to walking out the doors following your last day of a 25 year career working at a factory, doing the same job day after day in the gloom. And then you leave knowing you never have to come back again, and there's this glorious, golden sunset. And your job in the factory was being forced to kill babies.

Loops

When it comes to running I do miss North Adelaide. Well, not all of me misses it, mainly the lower half of my body which appreciated colliding with surfaces made of grass or soil, while still being flat and long enough to plan proper exercise.

Sydney is a city full of concrete, but I was determined to find somewhere I could jog and I took to Google Maps for an aerial survey of my area in case I'd missed anything suitable. I spotted a small park in the suburb next to Hurstville. It looked a little hilly but the grass was green and there was a footpath that looped around that I thought I could do some laps of. I used Map Pedometer to measure out a rough estimate of the track: 366 metres. If I ran the loop six times it would be about 2.2km which I decided would be a lovely jog to start rediscovering my fitness with.

I walked to the park and was pleasantly surprised at how clean and neat it was, by Sydney standards, which means it only had the equivalent of about two recycling bins worth of junk spread over it.
I did some leg swings with the support of a nearby tree and then started my laps. The park was otherwise empty, except for a Fijian man who started running loops right after me. He ran in the opposite direction so we made eye contact briefly half a dozen times.
After my laps I stopped to rest and he happened to stop near me. He asked me how many laps I did, to which I said "six".
He asked me, "why six?"
I said, "I measured the track and six laps equals 2.2 kilometres which is how far I wanted to run."
He was shocked, and wanted to know how I'd managed to measure the track so accurately while running. I told him I'd used a satellite to measure it.
"You have your own satellite?!" he said, incredulous.
"No," I said. "Well, actually, I guess you could say I do... We do."
I hadn't really thought about it that way before. Living in the future is awesome.