Tuesday, June 15, 2010

I'm going to do some work this afternoon though!

Today, I am home sick from work. It's the kind of sick where you're not really that sick but your immune system is a bit depressed and since everyone around you seems to be dying of advanced zombiism, it only figures that a bit of bed-rest is a good thing.

It is taking a super-human effort not to:
a) Do housework
b) Cookc) 'Just' finish off a bit of Phd work
d) Sit down with a blank sheet of paper and plan a movie script
e) Do anything outside in the garden

Instead, I have been devotedly watching cartoons and drinking hot coffee.

And trying not to think about what happened when I dropped Charlie off at childcare.
Take a knee, team. This was tough:

Normally, when I drop him off, I'm on the morning sprin
t. Every detail of the morning routine is precisely timed and any deviations cost precious seconds and result in being late(r) for work. That boy is fed, changed, packed and in the car with black-ops efficiency. Any extra nappy change only speeds up the rest of the process. I am David Copperfield and Enrico Rastelli, only faster and better-looking.
I swish into childcare in my finery, keeping a friendly banter while I sign Charlie in, then I put him on the floor, facing away, ask him what on earth that thing is, then I am Elvis, baby. By the time he remembers I was there, I am cutting off fools on South Road and getting my fix of baby-boomer radio on my way to the Bacon Factory.

This morning was different. I wasn't in a rush. We ate breakfast together, played blocks, talked of old times. We even read stories and brushed our teeth with real toothpaste. Oh! How we laughed. Instead of the whirlwind drop-off, I strolled in, bade a good-morning to his fan-club and signed him in. But when the time came to sit on the floor, he went full attack barnacle koala. Buried his face in my jumper. I had to sit down with him and play with the toys enough so that only about fifteen other babies swarmed around (I'm kind of the Pied Piper that way) and he felt okay enough to sit in front of me. And not on me.
I stood up quietly.
I left the room.
I shut the door.
Then, I made the crucial, fatal error. Every parent does it and it never, ever helps:
I looked back.
He was looking for me through the window. I waved and left with my hands covering my ears.

I've mostly convinced myself that he is actually going to have a much better time playing with the other kids, rather than wailing and being bored with a sick dad, but ...


Anyway, here's me on my sick day:


  1. Why are you spending your sick day in osama's cave?

  2. NEVER look back.

    But if you do, tell yourself - as Charlie's carers will tell you - that he will stop crying the second you are out of earshot.

    Oh and cartoons????

  3. DK - Good question. Good question. The conversation is a little awkward, but the samovar is always warm.

    Kath - Nothing erases those little brown eyes ...
    That's right: cartoons.

  4. Before registration and police clearance was necessary, I used to mind babies for working mothers, (never more than two at a time) and Kath is right. The tears stop as soon as they can't see you anymore.

  5. River - The kid's tears stop, but the parents ... well ...

  6. Never take a sickie when you are sick. Save them up for when you are well enough to enjoy 'em!!


An explanation of The Joy Division Litmus Test

Although it may now be lost in the mysts of thyme, the poll below is still relevant to this blog. In the winter of 2008, Mele and I went to live in Queensland. In order to survive, I bluffed my way into a job at a Coffee Club.
It was quite a reasonable place to work: the hours were regular, the staff were quite nice, it wasn't particularly taxing on my brain.
There were a few downsides: In the six weeks or so that I worked there, there was about a 90% staff turnover (contributed to by my leaving). This wasn't seen as a result of the low pay, the laughability of staff prices or the practice of not distributing tips to staff, rather it was blamed on the lack of work ethic among Bribie Island's youth.
However, one of the stranger aspects of the cultural isolation that touched our lives during our time "up there" was the fact that nobody at my work had heard of the band Joy Division.
The full explanation is available here.
But please, interact a little further and vote in my ongoing poll. The results are slowly mounting up, proving one thing: people read this blog are more well-informed about Joy Division than anyone who works at the Coffee Club on Bribie Island.

Have you heard of the band Joy Division?

Chinese food, not Chinese Internet!

Champions of Guess The Header

  • What is Guess The Header about? Let’s ask regular “Writing” reader, Shippy: "Anyway, after Franzy's stunning September, and having a crack at 'Guess The Header' for the first time - without truly knowing what I was doing mind you - I think I finally understand what 'GTH' is all about. At first I thought you needed to actually know what it was. Don't get me wrong — if you know what it is, it may help you. I now realise that it's more Franzy's way of invoking thought around an image or, more often than not, part of an image. If you dissect slightly the GTH explanatory sentence at the bottom of his blog you come up with this: “The photo is always taken by me and always connects in some way to the topic of the blog entry it heads up.” When the header is put up, the blog below it will in some obscure way have something to do with it. “Interesting comments are judged and scored arbitrarily and the process is open to corruption and bribery with all correspondence being entered into after the fact and on into eternity, ad infinitum amen.” Franzy judges it, but it's not always the GTH that describes the place perfectly that gets it. “The frequent commenters, the wits, the wags and the outright smartarses who, each entry, engage to both guess the origin and relevance of the strip of photo at the top (or “head”) of each new blog and also who leave what I deem the most interesting comment.” It generally helps if you're a complete smartarse and can twist things to mean whatever you feel they should mean - exactly the way Franzy would like things to be twisted." - Shippy Blogger and GTH point scorer.
  • Nai - 1
  • Lion Kinsman - 2
  • Will - 2
  • Brocky - 2
  • Andy Pants - 2
  • The 327th Male - 3
  • Mad Cat Lady - 3
  • Miles McClagen - 4
  • Myninjacockle - 4
  • Asheligh - 5
  • Neil - 5
  • Third Cat - 5
  • Adam Y - 6
  • Squib - 6
  • Mele - 6
  • Moifey - 7
  • Jono - 8
  • The Other, other Sam - 14
  • Kath Lockett - 15
  • Shippy - 19
  • River - 32