About Thyme

I made an omelette for dinner tonight using fresh thyme from my garden. It's the first time I ever cooked with that herb, and it was okay, nothing special. I'd eat it again.

Woolworths sell thyme for $300 a kilo, but the plant I grew I got from them for free last year because I spent $20. And all I had after that was plant it and water it and keep it out of the sun on hot days for the last ten months. I just saved myself $3! What fools Woolworths are. I'm definitely going back there next promotion to get more free seedlings for every $20 I spend.


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If you met yourself from the future, what would you ask your future self?
What if they wont tell you anything?


The Left Hand of Darkness

I was passed a copy of Ursula K. Le Guin's The Left Hand of Darkness by one of my early writing mentors a few years ago. It is a classic of Science Fiction. I remember taking it home, opening the first page and immediately being disgusted by this fact. My copy lacked any introduction, and the story immediately lurched to a halt in my mind as a cavalcade of invented words spilled from the page. (I think it was the Gossiwors which triggered me). Why was this a classic of Science Fiction - so immediately dry and unwelcoming - and not some dumb thing that I had written, like what if time travel was powered by love maybe? And there were some good jokes?

Since that day both Le Guin and that mentor have died and then I found myself picking up the copy I still had on my bookshelf last weekend when I had a big salad that needed eating outside. This time I persisted, reading the first 100 densely packed pages (single-spaced, no margins) over the course of a week, and then the final 100 pages this weekend. Le Guin really was a Science Fiction master, and it had been my younger self who was disgusting with his haste to dismiss this. It was, in fact, everything I've been lamenting about modern day Science Fiction. It's an adventure, enriched by lore and gibberish - sure - but it stands on its own as an exciting, intriguing tale of an envoy on a mission to a foreign planet. It touches on some big themes like gender, sexuality, politics and religion. Themes which have only grown bigger since. But none of these themes are imposed or foisted upon the reader. They're buried in the complex world building and well-crafted dialogue and you digest them purely through the consumption of the story. I was very impressed.

5,777 Days Later...

They say that all good things must end, and if there would ever be an exception to this proverb it was going to be my Sennheiser HD515 headphones.

On a function of money paid to hours used, I concluded that these over-ear headphones were the most successful purchase of my life.
That was in March 2011.

John Howard was prime minister when I bought these headphones. The iPhone hadn't been invented, all my vertebrae were still intact, and cans of Bundy and Cola were over 100% cheaper than present times.

image 2319 from bradism.com

Alas, the sponges I used to replace the earphone padding 3,985 days ago did not last as long I'd hoped for. Also the top padding broke, and the cable was fraying. And the connection would get a little scratchy if you moved the cord too much.

Still, even adding the additional $1.33 I paid for the sponges, the HD515s were the best thing I ever bought. Today their replacement arrived on my front doorstep like a baby at a fire station. The HD 559s.

They're not a prestige headphone. I'm lazy enough that I listen to most of my music via streaming services these days, and mainly I wanted something that was comfortable to wear for hours listening to Kunzite, Run the Jewels, or RÜFÜS as I pounded out emails in my home office, while still being able to hear Nash barking at the person reading the water meter.

I took the new box upstairs and opened the packaging with trepidation, conscious that I was wearing the HD515s on my ears as I did this. I extracted the new headphones, marvelling at the lack of scratches on the plastic, the goddamn girth of the earphone padding. Then, as I went to plug them into my computer I realised that these headphones did not come with a 3.5mm Stereo Jack adaptor to let me to plug them into my computer...

Fortunately, in 2006 the HD515 did.

image 2321 from bradism.com

This means my HD515 jack adaptor is now my most successful purchase ever.


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Deflating

I didn't like inflation when it triggered a bunch of stock market sell offs in January. I really didn't like it when I was walking around the supermarket this morning and noting how the price tag for nearly every product and service had changed since last time. Low fat, no sugar yoghurt is now $4.50. That's a 12.5% price jump! Does Covid, supply chains, and higher fuel costs truly justify such a steep increase? Can't they just reduce costs by putting even less sugar in it?

On the plus side, I have a salary review coming up.

Developing News

Life as an IT Professional has had its contrasts lately.

Some days I feel really fulfilled as a I contribute meaningfully as both an architect and engineer, delivering software which improves education outcomes for children, or maintains the pillars of justice within our society.

Other days I spend literally hours writing PHP code so that I can use a background image in entries and have it fade into the background in whatever position I want it to. This is so I can create entries on my phone with photo backgrounds without having to open Photopea and creating a gradient.

Is this a good use of my time?

image 2322 from bradism.com

You tell me.
image 2323 from bradism.com

It's not like I spent my whole weekend programming in a dark room. On Saturday morning I rode my bike to the Central Markets, had an iced latte and stocked up on salad. In the evening we drove to Moana for a picnic and a walk along the sand. On Sunday morning we strolled along the river and I watched Nash eat the cream out of a mini chocolate éclair.

I didn't take photos of any of this...

Summer Thursdays

I've been working a lot of hours lately. Enough that by Thursday morning I have enough up my sleeve to go hiking before breakfast, eat some fruit, oats and yogurt on a summit, and then stop for coffee on the way back to my computer. All before the UV becomes extreme.

image 2324 from bradism.com

This entry is to remind myself in future summers that this is an excellent way of structuring a week.

Twenty Two Things

Two shots of coffee

Two shots of coffee


Two laptops

Two laptops


Two spotted doves on the lawn

Two spotted doves on the lawn


Two puppies

Two puppies


Two beef patties

Two beef patties


Two eyes

Two eyes


Two feet

Two feet


Two wings

Two wings


Two tickets to a show

Two tickets to a show


Two rails

Two rails


Two O's (times two)

Two O's (times two)

Fringe Events Week 1 Review

Godz - Action packed acrobatics with quality laughs. 5 Stars

A Boy and his Deck - Primo card magic plus juvenile humour. 5 Stars

Falling off my Bike and Fracturing my Radial Head - Poorly executed stunts and not very funny. 0 Stars

Canberra Weekend

After two long months of Covid outbreaks, high UV and work deadlines I was ready for a nice break and so I didn't fly to Canberra on Friday for an extended weekend. I wanted to get out of Adelaide just for a few days. I also wanted to visit my brother and see my niece and nephew so I could give them each a Lego set and get in some good face time while they are impressionable as an investment into earning their help later in life when I'm overwhelmed with whatever digital dystopia humanity builds for itself by the turn of the century. They also have a new puppy who I successfully prevented from eating any of my shoes or other luggage by not being there at all.

The weather was great on Saturday and after not sharing a relaxed breakfast I also did not go to glow in the dark mini golf and beat the small children at the game of hitting a tiny ball into a hole. I also did not need to babysit them for an evening and distract them from their missing father by playing games of Pokemon cards and smash brothers on the Switch with them. Sunday I did not visit an aviary and take photos of multiple exotic and colourful birds up close before spending the afternoon at the local craft brewery playing board games with Steve and Jess while the kids made friends in the playground.

Today I was going to be on my own. Despite packing an umbrella I did not need to use it and there was not a drop of rain in Canberra. I didn't walk the lake and then into the centre of town. Canberra has many museums and galleries worth checking out and I saw none of them. I'd had my eye on Bent Spoke Brewing for the afternoon trying the beers on tap, but I didn't drink any and the companion book I have a hold on at the library wasn't available before my scheduled flight on Friday.

After being sent a free entry pass to the Virgin lounge at the start of 2021 and having it sit on my bookshelf throughout the Delta and Omicron waves I finally managed to use it, as it expired at the end of February so it had to go in the bin.

My flight home was delayed two hours which didn't bother me because I was already home trying to use shitty dictation software to summarise all the fun I had on my long weekend.