thief of time

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Road Safety?

I was wondering what the habit was in other countries when they paint signs on roads.

Here in NSW, instead of printing things from top to bottom, as one does in English, the sign is printed from bottom to top.

For example…




Instead of...




This is not a major problem, of course, but it is a bit disconcerting when you’re driving along and should be concentrating on the road and all of a sudden you have to take a mental side step and figure out what you’ve just read.

I’m assuming the Department of Roads and Transport has done a study and has discovered that this is the most effective way of getting their messages across?

If that is the case, it’s a bit of a worry that someone has done a psychological test to find out how people process information when they’re driving and that I obviously don’t fit into the profile. I’d like the chance to choose how I rebel against society’s norms, not just fall into it willy-nilly.

Thursday, June 17, 2004

Early Mornings

I’m a morning person and have been most of my life. At different times of my life, that’s meant different things, but generally I tend to get up earlier in the morning than people do on average, unless they're forced to(6 is my natural wake up time, even if I may not get up for a little bit after that) and I tend to fade in the evening, out like a light between ten and eleven, unless something keeps me up.

My daughter has just started working an early shift and has to be at work by 6, so in theory, my husband or I can take her there and then climb back into bed for a little bit of extra shuteye. That’s the theory anyways, and it seems to work fine for my husband.

Today, being my day off, it seemed natural that I do the duty, especially since I don’t want my husband to fall asleep when he’s taping Angel for me tonight, just in case I can’t make it, which often happens.

I got back home just after 6 and then realised I should put on a load of wash while I was at it and make the lunches, giving my son a call, as he had to be at school early. By the time that was finished, I was truly awake and decided I might as well get a move on the day and I’ve been at it ever since.

It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you get up in the morning. This almost feels like the time the children were young and used to wake up at 4 or 4:30 and be up for the day. I used to get loads of washing done and I’d bake up a storm and even prepare meals that I had to look up recipes for, instead of the same old, same old that I know off by heart.

It would be great if my enthusiasm holds up, because I’d love to get a bit more into the stuff I used to enjoy about housework, instead of the deadly, daily, boring grind. I might even get up enough enthusiasm to attack my son’s and daughter’s rooms with a shovel and wheelbarrow. Nothing like a bit of cleaning frenzy to get the blood flowing.

Thursday, June 10, 2004

Childhood Traumas

The reason I wrote about assertiveness yesterday was because I had a memory of asking someone if I could borrow their notebook once when I was in primary and she said a flat out “no”—no excuses, no nothing. I remember being quite shocked with this answer and strangely enough, I still feel ticked off about it. She sure didn’t need assertiveness training.

I then started to wonder why I had asked her, as I was terribly healthy when I was young, and I’d be surprised if I missed a class, except for the time I had the measles, which was a bit earlier.

That was when I remembered that I had lent my social studies notebook to someone to catch up on some notes he’d missed and he must have lost it because he swore up and down that he’d never borrowed it. I can’t even remember if I told the teacher, but I did let her know that I didn’t have my notebook and her response was that I’d have to recopy the whole kit and kaboodle. Gee, teachers were tough in those days. I was absolutely dumbfounded, as we had vast amounts of information in that little book and since it was the middle of the year, I don’t think my ages’ old memory is playing me false.

It seemed an absolutely mammoth task and I wasted weeks of my recess and lunchtimes trapped in the classroom rewriting all that information, complete with illustrations, all neatly arranged, titles underlined, the works.

I actually did manage to finish recopying the whole book and I suppose I had a certain feeling of accomplishment at the end, but oh how I resented having had to do it. Nowadays, I suppose I’d borrow someone’s book and photocopy it, if they made me do anything at all.

If only I’d exercised a little assertiveness to start with, I wouldn’t have been in that situation in the first place. Still, I’m glad someone was nice enough to lend me their book. It doesn’t seem fair that I can’t remember who it was, because they deserve my eternal gratitude.

I can still remember the girl that said “no”, though, both first and last names. I can still picture her sitting across from me too. Gee, talk about holding onto a grudge. I think 35 plus years is a bit excessive. I’m definitely going to have to learn to let go and forgive. I suppose having forgotten about it for that long actually doesn't count, if I can still dredge up the same feelings. Gee, the memory is a funny thing.

Wednesday, June 09, 2004


Why is it that some people are born assertive, while the rest of us are like limp rags and give in, no matter how much we don't want to?

I've read a bit about assertivness and I understand the principles, I think, but to actually exercise it in real life situations is a different thing. I find it very difficult to say a flat out "No", while if I can think of a plausible excuse, then I feel that I've managed to weasle out with a bit of face. The trouble is that I can usually only think of my best excuses after the fact, and once I've given my word I feel obliged to carry through.

I thought it was supposed to get easier when you got older, but I haven't noticed a real improvement so far. The best thing for me is usually when I already have a conflicting prior arrangement.

Maybe one day I'll grow up and learn to say a simple "no" with conviction. Until then, maybe I should just prepare a mental template of excuses and be ready to whip them out at a moment's notice.

Saturday, June 05, 2004

Angel question

This is just a quick question for anyone that happened to view this week's Angel. Did anyone else think "Seven of Nine" when Ilyria was talking to Wes near the end of the episode? Unless I was in a very strange mood, it seemed almost uncanny.

In any case, it's not looking good for our heroes.

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

A waste of time

I was just listening to the ABC yesterday and the question under consideration was what was the best or worst gig the listener had ever been to.

Being an old married person, it’s been an age since I’ve been to anything live, but one of the worst things I’ve been to in recent memory has to be Legally Blonde 2.

We take my mum-in-law out to the movies every so often and try to pick something that’s bearable for us all (which is sometimes a bit of an effort), but boy did we bomb out with LB2.

We’d seen Blonde 1, and while not rocket science, it was a light, fluffy, mostly enjoyable way to spend a couple of hours.

Boy, number 2! The thoughts of reaching my advanced age and then wasting a whole hour and a half, or so, of my limited remaining life span with this second movie was extremely depressing. I’m not one hundred percent sure, but I think I could feel my brain liquefying and dripping out through my ears and pooling on the seat beside me. I’m afraid it’s led me to declare a total personal ban against R. Witherspoon and all her products.

More honest critiques of movies would be a big help. LB2 received a medium review, certainly not the minus number it deserved. Movies whose only drawcard is a big name actor and a formula that worked before should receive the box office they deserve. Our hard-earned money and time doesn't need to be abused the way it so frequently is.

A curse on her and all her kind.