Sunday, 29 July 2012

Blowing out the cobwebs

A couple of weeks ago, in response to this post, one of my brothers suggested I get on the motorbike and explore the local countryside a bit. Find a bakery, have a coffee, that sort of thing.

The rest of the family is away in Canberra this weekend and, having done the laundry, swept up, and seen all the livestock to rights, I thought "why not?" I grabbed the road atlas off the shelf, worked out a quick route, tossed the dogs outside with a treat, and headed out.

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Line the budgie-cage!

I just had to share this with all of you.

In Bendigo, regional Victoria, the opening of a multi-storey carpark is not just news, it's news that requires a picture involving the mayor.  This story and picture dominated page 5 of the print edition of  Wednesday's Bendigo Advertiser:

The caption refers to the Mayor "waving his - and the first - parking ticket" (click the image to get a bigger view).

That was Wednesday.  

Today (Thursday), page 2 of the print edition carried this story:

"Rosemary Hill proudly displays her ticket to the new Edward Street car park, the first to be issued ...".

Really?  And Fairfax wonders why its share-price is on life support.

Monday, 23 July 2012

Computer slugfest

It's time to bite the bullet.  Sometime in the next few weeks I'm going to have to replace this computer.

It's a Toshiba Satellite A200 laptop, and it's getting sluggish, poor thing.  Whenever you ask too much of the processor it just throws its metaphorical hands in the air and says "This job's too hard!", and switches off.  To be honest it's always had cooling problems - and for the last six months I've been using a cake cooling tray under it, to ensure it doesn't just shut down when I least expect it.

For example, I just tried to Google the model number for this laptop, to find out how old it really is, and the thing shut down.  (And yes, why would I dig out the documentation when I can Google the result?)  

Enough is enough.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

A splendid day out

A week or two ago we received a letter in the mail from the power company, informing us that the power would be off between 9am and 3.30pm one day coming up. There's a new residential development going in up the road, and they needed to put up some new poles or something.

Usually the lack of power during these hours would not be a problem. On a weekday we're out before nine and none of us is back before 3.30 so, apart from having to reset all those clocks, we wouldn't really notice.

On this occasion, however, the nominated day was a Sunday.

No point in getting all upset. We simply decided we needed to go out for the day.

Today's excursion was to Daylesford.

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Tired of browsing

I reckon a lot of blokes reading this will identify with the phenomenon known in the Good Plates family as "shopping fatigue".

In my mind a good shopping trip is a decisive one: a surgical strike, if you will.  The commodity is not just identified.  It is quantified, costed and its whereabouts are determined as closely as possible without actually entering a shop.  Then all that's left to do is go there and get it.  Job done.

When you have to shop cooperatively (e.g. in a marriage), however, it doesn't always work that way.  I love Mrs G dearly and I mean this only as a general observation on the differing approaches that men and women take to shopping, but I don't deal well with the shopping trip in which the objectives and time frame are not well defined.

Friday, 6 July 2012


Honda Moto2 rider Marco Marquez, via

This may come as a surprise to some of you, but I'm actually quite interested in motorsport.

To be specific, Moto2 and Moto3.

It still surprises Mrs G that I'll set the TiVo to record this stuff, and sit down in front of it and actually watch it.  Indeed, I get a little bit weird when I think the TiVo has automatically deleted it before I've watched it.  I never used to be this way.

Monday, 2 July 2012

The flag police (they come to me in my sleep)

I love Australians.

I love the way we maintain that we’re very easy-going while allowing ourselves to get uptight about stuff for no very good reason.

I was musing on this topic as I walked into the office this morning, past the flagpoles which were conspicuously lacking the two officially proclaimed indigenous flags of Australia on this first day of “National Aboriginal and Islander Day of Observance Committee” (NAIDOC) Week.