4 February 2009

6 things

rooftop
Unrelated photograph of a roof and sky. I don't know why [she swallowed the fly, perhaps she'll die].

1. I am supposed to be doing my tax today (the mister did his ages ago and is getting more than impatient that I haven't done mine. He is keen to go to the accountant? Sheesh). Before I start doing my tax I need to take children to school (check), go to the vacuum cleaner shop to purchase new bags and filter (check), and go to the op shop to purchase art textbook for Son #1 (fail, they always have a copy but not today. They did however have a Roget's Thesaurus [because I only own two copies], some dark green wool fabric, some lovely navy blue silk/linen fabric [score!], a bag of wooden beads, three pleasing balls of yarn, a beautiful pair of David Lawrence woollen pants, and three woollen jumpers [Esprit, Country Rd and Cue] because even though it's 33C it is never too early to prepare for winter, right?)

And now I need to blog. But tax soon! Right after I have some lunch, and make dinner and bring the washing in. Loo needs a clean too, better do that first. And upload unrelated photographs for my own amusement.

3 Feb : art exhibition at the Eltham library
Unrelated photograph of an art exhibition at our local library. Check out the mudbrick walls - much neater than our mudbrick walls.

2. I still can't find my book notebook, in which I record all the books I read and the audio books I listen to. Most frustrating. I wanted to do a 2008 recap. Here's a taster anyway ... Bel Canto by Ann Patchett and Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen were both absolute highlights of my literary year. So too In my Father's Den by Maurice Gee, several things by Philippa Gregory and Tracy Chevalier, and I re-read The Other Side of You by Salley Vickers which was even better the second time. Helen Garner's The Spare Room was spare and touching and made extra real by hearing her speak at work (a sort of In Conversation event that I attended). Sandra Gulland's Josephine Bonaparte trilogy - magnifique! An Equal Music by Vikram Seth, Broken for You by Stephanie Kallos and People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks. I didn't think much of the rather scattered structure and unlikeable characters in Kate Atkinson's Emotionally Weird but have loved everything else she's written. Actually that last one was this year not 2008 so just consider it an early addition to my reading round up post due some time around 31st December 2009. Ok, I think I can get away without a full 2008 list now, reading back over that paragraph! I did read some beauties. A few duds too, but I won't bother recording them here.

On our way to school we stopped at the end of the street to say hello to the miniature horse and her new baby.  He bites.
Photograph that relates to following text!

3. This morning on the way to school we stopped at the end of our street to say hello to the miniature horse and her little baby who is several weeks old by now. The foal is smaller than our dog! Also, it bites.

4 Feb : On our way to school we stopped at the end of the street to say hello to the miniature horse and her new baby. And discovered it bites.
Again with the relevant photographs

4. The tooth fairy is once again failing to achieve optimal productivity outcomes. See previous benchmarked figures, noting that four nights of no-show will result in performance objectives rating of Traffic Light: Red.

rural accoutrements
Unrelated photograph of cattle accoutrements (I think) in the country.

5. Weasel words are awful, aren't they? Currently at my place of employment, we have staff who are "surplus to needs" [redundant], and "staff separations" [in which they are sacked]. A friend of mine who works in the health system reckons their bureaucrats talk of "negative patient outcomes" [deaths]. We have a wonderful list in our tearoom full of CorporateSpeak terms like "knowledge gradient" [some students are higher up the class than others], "robust discussion" [shitfight in a meeting], "paradigm shift" [when the government/senior management changes the policy and everybody scrambles to get on board and fight for the money] and my recent personal favourite ... "decanting". As in, tossing people out of their office and putting them somewhere far less convenient and generally within whiff of the gents' loos. Also, as noted in the comments, "knowledge transfer". Which is of course TEACHING.

the train stopped and a workman hopped out with a bucket of water
Random train. See the workman climbing onto the track with a bucket of water? Why?! Who knows. You go, Connex! No sophisticated technology for our infrastructure, eh?

6. Craft Weekend this Friday night until as late as I can possibly string it out on Sunday afternoon. At a house by the beach which will be excellent as Saturday is supposed to be 37C 47 degrees Celsius. Oh my, this heat!

caught

Ok, tax time.

39 comments:

sooz said...

Right then, off you go. Have fun. Tax is fun, right?

And if you get that paperwork in fast enough you'll get some of Kevin's early Easter surprise money (apparently based on 2007/8 tax assessments - so no return, no bonus!!!).

CurlyPops said...

Eeek another craft weekend... I'm a little worried about those negative patient outcomes.

Penthe said...

Negative tooth fairy outcomes were avoided last week when it was found that the coin had 'accidentally got caught up in the pillowslip', not that proxies of the tooth fairy had completely forgotten that the tooth had come out overnight. No satisfactory explanation for the non-removal of the tooth was put forward by the fairy or her proxies. Rumours of it being left as a 'souvenir' are yet to be confirmed.

Blue Mountains Mary said...

Why does the notion of bitey little foals bother me?

I know not why.

"Caught" is particularly appealing.

janet said...

all I want to say is "do your tax" - if you are due a refund the goverment has already kept your money longer than they should have and will never pay you interest on it. If on the other hand you owe the gov't you'll still have to pay interest from when it was owed. And maybe a fine for late lodgement. Which sucks.... my previous bureacratic experience showing? non? I am such a nerd... I positively enjoying doing the family's returns using e-tax....

and my work is full of weasel words; participation failure (not going to a job network meeting or some other trangression), negotiating an activity agreement (when some bored and stressed worker tells a person on newstart how many jobs they have to look for, while being stared at by the queue of people lodging their forms) and my favourite mutual obligation (where the customer has to do even more pfaffing and paperwork and maybe even attend work for the dole for no extra help in looking fort work - the mutual here is particularly weaselly) fun week at work indeed. Think I need a good craft weekend.

K said...

You didn't like Emotionally Weird?

You didn't like Emotionally Weird.

I am shocked, and not a little saddened. You take lovely photos, though.

janet said...

that was a bit long and unedited, sorry! can't figure out how to preview and then alter with this new comment setup....

zoesquid said...

Hi Suse, Just recently back to blog land. We're considering purchasing a mud brick house too. I'd be interested in hearing how you find living in them. Any tips would be greatly appreciated.
Ps Hope you got your tax done!

Sandra Gulland said...

I love that Josephine B. is in such good company and I especially love this blog.

Alas, I'm now reminded that I should be doing my taxes as well.

Badger said...

I loved Bel Canto and Water For Elephants, too! Haven't read those other ones.

It's nearly tax time here as well, but fortunately it's all up to DH and I don't have to do a thing. There are advantages to having no income! And ... that's pretty much the only one.

RW said...

That is a great recap of books... I will find my notebook and transcribe them.

Fioleta said...

Maybe you should join http://www.librarything.com to help you keep track of the books your read.

Good luck with finishing your taxes. I usually procrastinate until my parents and my husband are on my case.

YetAgainJen said...

Beautiful pics! I love the train one the best.

herhimnbryn said...

I am NOT a horsey person but........................I could learn to love that tiny, elfen creature.

I envy you your craft w/e. Time with like minded souls and time to create.

froginthepond said...

procrastination, much? fab, unrelated photos, though.

I tend to the view that scoring at an op shop offsets anything negative that has happened in the last week. Particularly if it involves money.

Suse said...

Ooh err, a real live author just commented on my blog! I feel all name-droppy! Thank you Sandra.

Janet, ok, I'll finish the tax.

Zoe, muddies are DUSTY to live in. And COBWEBBY. And you have to VACUUM YOUR WALLS as well as your floors. It's odd. But I like it. (The house, not the endless vacuuming).

K, I didn't really care about any of the characters in Emotionally Weird and found it a bit strange the way it jumped all over the place including to the novel the protagonist was writing. But I've just read One Good Turn, and like all Atkinson's other books that I've read thus far, I LOVED it. Does that help somewhat?

Fioleta, I'm already on blogger, flickr, ravelry and facebook. Not sure I can cope with librarything. (Actually come to think of it I think I joined once and uploaded 6 books and never went back).

HHB, the tiny horse has a nose like velvet if that is of some use. And the bitey-ness isn't nasty. More, curious.

Another Outspoken Female said...

I think a few of us are getting a prompt to get tax done, just in case the senate passes the sweeties bill!

Gina said...

Hope you get that tax done! I'm feeling smug because I got mine done a whole week before the deadline this year!

Kathe Kramer said...

I always love your writing and photographs. I have not commented, (that I remember). This post with the random photographs and long tax evasion just made me so happy. Until, it reminded me that hubby has asked for my receipts for taxes. Wish I was better about filing.

Suse said...

I'm a first time visitor. Love your writing.

Uurrgh tax. I haven't had to do one for the last two years but hubby has been very slack. I negotiated payment for doing his and then procrastinated on that. He finally did it last night. No bill thank goodness.

I'm going to read some of your recommended books. I never can think what to get when I'm in a store or at the library. Thanks!

Fiona said...

I love to collect horrible weasel words... a friend told me the other day that she had an 'Outplacement Officer' at her place of employment (ie someone who deals with all the sackings - lovely!) Negative patient outcomes really takes the cake, though.

Good luck with your tax!

Stomper Girl said...

Thirty-seven on Saturday? We wish. Currently forecast for a lovely 43 degrees, funfunfun. I WILL like tapping in that.

I have never read any more Kate Atkinson because I tried Emotionally Weird first and didn't like it or finish it.

You should hire my Tooth Fairy, she made it all the way to the beach-house and was right on time too. She's such a good Tooth Fairy. Although I don't think her taxes are up-to-date either.

shula said...

still choking on Negative Patient Outcomes.

Weasel words are just lies masquerading as truth.

Suse said...

Not so much weaselly, but just corporatespeak, is "knowledge transfer" which is what teachers and lecturers do.

In my day, teachers taught.

Fiona, we have outplacement officers currently too. And 'career planning counsellors' who have to inform those identified as 'surplus to needs' (redundant) that they are to 'separate' (ie. get the sack).

docwitch said...

Wonderful book listy. Got my eye on a couple of those.

Love your pics even when they're irrelevant.

The tooth fairy in these parts frequently fails to achieve optimal performance outcomes. No doubt a committee is on to it somewhere and said fairy may be found 'surplus to needs'. The Nazis ran their entire bureaucracy on weasel words. How comforting that corporations do so now. Easing us into oblivion and all that.

Good luck with the tax...(I put mine off for ages and ages too).

peppermintpatcher said...

Did you read Water for Elephants or listen to it? It was the first audio book I ever bought. It was told in two voices - the old mand and the young. It was bloody brilliant!

It was a real paradigm shift for me in literary transfer...

meli said...

hmmm, i think in a university context 'knowledge transfer' means something very specific - not teaching but communicating to the outside world. you know, the great unwashed. kind of a form of publicity... it's a bit strange.

Di said...

Great pics. Your blue sky and white house was relevant to me as I am currently making a blue and white quilt and am in a blue and white mode.

Victoria said...

That horse is so wonderful. No wonder it bites, small things have to assert themselves.
When I don't agree with a foster-care related decision put to me by the beuracracy (or however it's spelled) I have learnt that to say "I don't support that" or "I will not support that" is taken much more seriously than "I disagree", "That's stupid" or "No."
Love the last photo in this post deeply.
Hope you have a great weekend!

Louise T said...

I love An Equal Music, I've re-read it a few times and it's still just as good, even though I know what happens. The miniature horse is so lovely! I ride Exmoor ponies, and they're so fluffy in their winter coats at the moment. Hope your craft weekend is fun, I wish I had the time to dedicate a whole weekend to non-work.

Anonymous said...

Suse,

We hope, hope, hope, that you and your family are safe from Bushfires! (And that you are getting some rain without the lightning) and also to all those who read your blog and might be in those areas in Victoria threatened by the fires.

Best wishes for a quiet cool Sunday, with love maman



with lov

h&b said...

Hoping you are keeping safe - thinking of you this morning and hoping all is ok :(

My sister is friends with just about everyone in Kinglake - the stories from her so far are just *awful*.

xx
Lea

Anonymous said...

I too hope you are safe, have been thinking of you all day, I love your blog, I read it all the time.xx pip

Emma said...

I also checked in with prayers that you and yours are safe. You and all Victoria are in my thoughts tonight.

eurolush said...

Thinking of you and hoping you and your family are safe and sound. So sorry to hear about what people are going through there right now. It's terrible. You're in my prayers.

Laura said...

Hope you have not dried up and blown away in the heat. The pictures look awfully scary from here.

Anonymous said...

Hope you are all safe and well. Thinking of you ....

Louise P said...

I also hope you are all safe, and the fires are abating...

Di said...

:) Oh, you may mock, but from time to time it is my job to prepare so called "decanting strategies" for poor unsuspecting academics and university administrators. It's a very precise art you know, deciding exactly who needs to be closest to the gents... (closely followed by who needs to be stuck next to the cafeteria waste store).