Sunday, May 15, 2011


I just thought up that name for my new greengrocers shop: purveyors of black carrots, blue tomatoes and tattooed pumpkins, maaaaaan.

Again I am going to gather my thoughts about the last week and get them down in blog form. It will be scattered and patchy - sorry in not-quite-advance-anymore.

So - I saw a man walking a large cat through the light bushy fringe of suburban Mt Nelson this morning. It was right at the edge of my vision, and I realised that what I had taken for a dog was too slinky yet self-important. The man had a newspaper under his arm. At first I thought (with joy) he had walked to the shop and back with cat at heel. In fact I think the cat probably roams through this bit of bush near his home, and appeared to meet him as he was almost to the spot where the general bush turned into his backyard.

I was at a soccer clinic with Marcus at the time. All the boys in his team were invited to come along to a "Regional Development Squad". At Under 9 I don't think there is any selection process. Any kids motivated enough to front up for more soccer on Sunday after playing on Saturday are welcome. Marcus really loved it, and made the perceptive comment, "That was really training, because we learned something. Our soccer practice is practice but it isn't training."

His team won 14-0 yesterday, against a team that was fielding some Grade 1 kids. It was obvious from the start that it was going to get lopsided. David takes the corners, and he is one of the few under 9s around that can actually get the ball up in the air - then its just a question of getting it to bounce off anyone, and a goal is pretty likely. Marcus and Felix however both scored impressive intentionally-headed goals. One of the smaller kids was carried off with an injury towards the end. We scored our fourteenth as the ball rolled between the goalie's legs. Groan. Not very good for anyone when it comes out like that. I asked around at the clinic today to find out why that team is playing such little kids, when they seemed to have enough big kids (they had 3 or 4 subs). The answer just seemed to be that the little kids wanted to do it.

To work then. Although I am a designer I like to do the proofreading as well. Anything I am typesetting, it just comes naturally to read it, and fact-check as well as spell-check. I think it's important that we get things right. Sometimes I am accused of being pedantic or some kind of quizmaster freak. A few things got on top of me this week and by Thursday I was fighting the urge to thump particular workmates, who wanted to interrupt my work to discuss particular corrections I had made.

On Friday afternoon the directors called up from one of the bars downstairs for us all to knock off and come down for a drink to celebrate finishing this particular project. They were a few drinks ahead of us, and love was in the air. We were all terrific, indispensable etc. One said "Heyyyy - congratulations, you're our first employee to make it to long service leave!" Apparently I am qualified for 3 months leave with pay. This is odd, because before we got our fridge-sized dog I enquired about LSS. We had half a mind to take the kids out of school for a term, and drive around Australia. At the time I was told it was 5 years away. So on Friday I asked if they were sure. The answer was "Um, pretty sure?"

I had two exciting invitations in the last week. One is to Government House for a reception to honour Amnesty International's 50th anniversary. I was pretty surprised as I volunteer on AI's market stall, but that's it. I'm not even a financial member. Still, I will climb into the suit and hopefully not let the prisoners of conscience down by using the wrong fork.

The other invitation was from a new online parenting magazine, to write blog posts for them. Once that is up and running I will put up links here. I warned them that parenting advice appears less in my blogs than, say, zebras. They seem unfazed.

OK, one last thing. I was invited to go to see Dave Graney last night but passed, as I thought I needed a quiet night. Then Elf announced we were going to My Friend The Chocolate Cake, the veteran acoustic combo. Imp and Ed came as well, and we all enjoyed it immensely.

They consist of piano, double bass, cello, violin, guitar and drums. The pianist, singer and main writer, David Bridie is one of Australia's great songwriters, and has a very distinctive voice. I don't think he has great vocal range but he is perfect for this music. The highlight for me was to see and hear the interactions between David and Hope Csutoros on violin, and particularly between Hope and Helen Mountford on cello. They just love playing together, you can tell. And they've been doing it for 21 years now. The bassist, Dean, is from Hobart. His Mum and Dad were taking tickets on the door.

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