The Digital Age

1 12 2008

I ran across this today.

“Every NSW public school student in years 9 to 12 will get a laptop they can keep when they leave school, after the NSW government recanted its opposition to the commonwealth’s computers in schools program.”

All I have to say is I got totally gipped in high school! Where was my free laptop???

Does this mean every classroom will eventually have a printer and when you do stuff in class you can print it and the teacher can sit next to the printer and just pick up everything off it …

For the first time ever, I actually want to go back to high school to see what it would be like walking around with a laptop …

Trying to skyve off and play solitaire when the teacher isn’t looking …

Omg, not having to WRITE everything down!!!

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Junk Food … The New Smoking?

28 11 2008

I came across this while going through some online news articles.

It’s a news article that is talking about the activists in Australia who are pushing to extend the ban on when junk food companies can advertise on TV to children.

The ban is currently 4pm – 5pm but they want it extended to cover the 6pm – 9pm slot, which they argue has thousands more children watching and thus is more effective.

It should also be noted that junk food doesn’t include McDonalds, KFC, Hungry Jacks and other fast food outlets.

All I have to say is…

What … the … heck!

I have to say now that I have always had a soft spot for chocolate and chips … even some biscuits or cookies …

But what the heck is with banning the advertising of these products on TV?

Apart from the obvious arguments about Freedom of choice …

When did Junk Food become the new smoking?

Isn’t this how it started with smoking?

First they weren’t allowed to advertise on TV.

Then they weren’t allowed to show people smoking in TV shows or movies anymore?

Then they put whopping great big pictures and skull and cross-bones on the packs …

And fun little tidbits like “Smoking Causes Lung Cancer”

Now they have doctors carving up a heart full of cigarette tar on national TV …

An ad I personally detest, especially because I am NOT a smoker.

Finally, with the banning of smoking cigarettes in many public places.

Is this how it’s going to be with Junk Food?

Is this the slippery slope so to speak?

Am I going to be eventually paying three times as much for my block of cadbury’s chocolate while reading labels on the front that say “Eating Chocolate causes Diabetes”

What … the … heck???

At some point, when enjoying a nice meal with my friends, am I going to have to sneak outside to get my chocolate fix because people aren’t allowed to see people eating Junk Food in case it gives them ideas???

Look I have to say that it was all okay when smoking was the evil villain …

But Junk Food?

Has anyone even considered the other things that can lead to obesity just as much as a simple chocolate bar …

The TV remote control … in fact everything remote controlled so you never have to leave your couch …

In fact, really comfy couches that you never want to leave …

How about … desk jobs!

Yeah, that’s right … I said it!

Why not make those poor bastards go for a walk for an hour a day and pay them for it rather than taking their Junk Food away!

And here’s the kicker …

What about Motor Vehicles of any kind …

Allowing us to sit on our big fat behinds, while eating our chocolate bars and slamming down a few fries, while only turning the steering wheel because the car has cruise control and alarms that tell you if you will run into something.

What about Television!

Ha … try to take away my advertisements …

Well I’m taking away your Television – no need to advertise anything now!!

Ha!

Look, back in the eighties when they got worried about obesity levels, they launched an advertising campaign!

Remember, “Life be in it”

Hell we all do ..

It was an annoying campaign …

But at least they didn’t try and take away our Junk Food or our rights to decide for ourselves if we want to eat it!

Try and take my chocolate away Australia …

Just try!

This!

Means …

WAR!!!!





Chainsaws … A Collector’s Item?

27 11 2008

The other day I was sitting on the balcony, in the warm spring afternoon sun, reading my local paper…

When I came across an advertisement …

No, not one of those I’m looking for my dream girl or guy type advertisements …

Not even one of those advertisements of the “I have this great item in my personal possession that I now view as junk and am trying to offload it to the highest bidder … ono”

It simply said …

“Want to buy old chainsaws [insert phone number here]”

Really, it’s a very succinct advertisement.

I guess when you pay by the word you have to get to the point and quickly …

But chainsaws?

When did they become a collector’s item?

This guy lives in my area …

What does he do with said chainsaws???

There are a lot of properties out here …

You only need one to cut down a tree or similar odd job …

Why do you really need more than one?

Unless you somehow worship the Chainsaw??

What kind of person, gets really interested in a Chainsaw?

That person buys said Chainsaw …

Cleans it up and makes it look really pretty …

Probably puts it on a stand in the shed …

Amongst other chainsaws …

Just so that later, they can go and destroy something with it.

This leads me to think …

What kinds of things does a Chainsaw collector enjoy destroying?

Trees …

Fences …

The annoying neighbourhood dog?

Or maybe …

People!?!

Oh …my…god!

Where the hell have I moved to?





The new pills ….

19 11 2008

For anyone that doesn’t know …

I have chronic leg pain …

I have had this for a while now …

How long?

Oh say 10 years or so …

It started out slowly, only flaring up say once a week or when I exercised vigorously…

Then in the last couple of years the pain was occurring every day and getting worse…

I, of course, dealt with this as any sane person would …

I went to my leg with a very sharp axe and started hacking for all my life was worth …

No, I didn’t really do that …

But God, I wanted to on a few occasions …

I actually turned to painkillers, that steadily got stronger as time went on.

Don’t worry, this isn’t my confession about “How I got addicted to painkillers” or anything like that.

I vigorously checked my dosages to make sure I never got addicted, however, I still needed to combine Nurofen Plus with Panadeine Forte to kill the pain every day.

At my last doctor’s appointment, I was told to stop taking the Nurofen Plus and to start 100mg of Aspirin every day to thin the blood.

So, I rock on down to my local chemist and pick up some of the low dosage aspirin as prescribed.

I find out that normal aspirin has 300mg per tablet …

But there is of course special aspirin made for people like me … yay!

I read the packet to see if I have to take food with the pills or not …

Can be taken with or without food …

Bonus!

I notice that there is a warning amongst the paraphernalia …

“This product may cause dizziness or light-headedness in some people. Make sure you know how you react to this product before driving a car or operating machinery”

Ha! I thought …

“As if it would affect me …” I scoffed out loud to Fiancee

I’ve been taking Nurofen Plus and Panadeine Forte together for the last few months …

I’m like the Hulk!

I can handle it!

So I took the tablet.

About 30 minutes later, I start to feel strange.

It could be just paranoia, but I swear that I can feel the blood pumping in my head …

I’m suddenly really aware of it!

In fact it feels like I now HAVE a Headache!

What the …???

I take three times the amount of this stuff to get rid of a headache …

But a tiny amount gives me a headache?

Then suddenly, like a badly maintained Qantas jet losing altitude, I lose energy …

I start to feel tired … really bone tired …

It’s a struggle to lift my arms kind of tired…

As if I’d swum the English Channel or something.

At the time I was writing my last blog post …

I look at the keyboard, willing myself to finish …

But it starts to look like a nice black pillow with funny white dots …

I shake my head and even slap myself a couple of times to wake up …

Wow, is this what anaemic people feel like?

During this time, I’ve been keeping Fiancee updated on my current situation, in case I suddenly pass out and have to be rushed to hospital …

That and I know it drives him insane to have minute by minute updates on my life …

Just because I’m out of energy doesn’t mean I can’t still make his life a little more interesting …

Ha Ha!

“Quick, get me a steak, Stat!” I joke

Luckily, we were planning on having steak for dinner and Fiancee goes and cooks one for me.

About halfway through the blessed morcel of scotch fillet steak, I start to feel better.

Oh …my … God!

Apparantly, I can handle huge doses of codeine and ibuprofen every day,

but a tiny bit of aspirin appears to be my Kryptonite!

What the …??

I’m really not looking forward to taking my second dose today …

Obviously, medical warnings are there for a reason ….

Other than to protect big pharmaceutical companies for litigation …

Who’d a thunk it, huh?





Leg Update 7: The new Specialist!

18 11 2008

Oh wow – we’re up to number seven already …

Kill me!

But at least I can see a possible end in sight…

I think…

It might be a bit dim …

Nobody told me there was a dimmer switch on the light at the end of the tunnel!

Stupid interior Decorators!

So I trekked over to my new hospital in Brisbane to see the new specialist, doctor Bob (yeah I’m changing the name just so I don’t get sued!)

I was shown into a room where I was greeted by a female doctor …

Huh? Bob, you’ve gotten more attractive all of a sudden … I thought to myself.

She explains that she assists Dr Bob.

Then starts the usual rigmarole;

We go through my past medical history

She throws in an “Oh my god I can’t believe you’ve had this for ten years”

I hold back all comments about the quality of certain doctors in this country but can’t resist throwing in a “Well it has been mis-diagnosed a couple of times”

She takes my blood pressure and listens to my heart …

“Mmm … that’s interesting” she says

I can feel my mouth go dry and my blood pressure increase.

It’s never good when a doctor says something is interesting …

unless you’re in a restaurant ordering food with them …

even then It’s still an 80% chance it’s still bad news!

“Oh yeah what’s that?” I attempt as calmly as I can manage

“It seems you have a very faint heart murmur” she replies calmly

Dear God! What the hell did I ever do to you, some strange leg malformation and a curved spine weren’t good enough you had to throw in a heart murmur for good measure huh??

Then she goes to get Dr Bob …

Who swans into the room surrounded by an invisible cloud of self importance like Mr Darcy in Pride and Prejudice…

The female doctor reads out the recommendations from my last specialist …

Dr Bob seems skeptical but decides to shove a stethoscope onto the troubled area …

“Pfft, that’s just vein issue” he proclaims after listeneing for all of five seconds. “We don’t need to do an Angiogram for that!” he continues.

Holy crap this guy’s a maverick! Who needs tests when I can listen for five seconds and determine everything that is going on!

I look at him and realise he bears a striking resemblence to Dr House on that TV show.

Then comes the inevitable …

He starts poking the swollen muscle …

Please tell me why doctors feel the need to poke it? Is it to see me jump ten feet and then put my hands around their throats until they stop??

I restrained myself from hitting the guy in the face … this time …

Instead I opted for cowering in the corner furtherst away from him!

Yeah, I’m an empowered woman!

Then some discussion went around about my options etc

Surgery, Injections of alcohol, Blood thinners or live with it.

Surgery is not that great – it’s impossible to get it all and harder to operate on the next time.

The injections of alcohol to basically kill the veins that are malformed and not working properly is successful in 80% of cases.

In 10 % it is ineffective.

In the other 10% is when the alcohol leaks out into the muscle killing off bits that you need (that never repair) … I already knew this bit and am not perturbed if I can live without pain…

Then he tells me that in some cases the alcohol leaks to the skin causing nasty painful ulcers that don’t heal and you have to have skin grafts to get it fixed etc (swapping one pain for another I’m not keen on)

I take it he’s seen some of these cases because he was very serious and sombre while telling me about them…

Typically, I’ve gone a nice shade of white during his explanation.

Then he asks me if I’m on the pill.

“Yes” I reply

“Oh well we have to get you off that, it could be contributing to the problem … the pill is known for causing blood clots … have you ever had a blood clot?” he says

“Ummm, not that I’ve noticed” I say

Can anybody tell me why in all the years I’ve had this not one bloody doctor has suggested taking me off the pill?? The time I suggested to a doctor he scoffed at me and told me that wouldn’t help.

Gah!!!

“Are you alergic to aspirin?” he asks

“Not as far as I know” I reply

“Okay we’ll get you taking that to thin the blood and check on you in a month. After that we might send you to have the injection treatment depending on how it goes” he says

So essentially, I’m stopping the pill and taking 100mg of aspirin a day.

While I’m desperately hoping that this will work and I won’t have to risk going through the injections with the nasty side effects …

If this actually works I think I will go postal!

In ten years it was this bloody simple to fix?

What the … heck???

My next appointment is January 12th.





An Amusing Interlude …

26 10 2008

Well it was amusing to me at any rate. It is also completely true!

Yesterday (Saturday morning), I was standing in line at Woolworths.

It was the express lane, but let me tell you there was nothing EXPRESS about it!

Why do I ALWAYS pick the slow lane?

So while waiting in the slow lane something very amusing happened.

I mean it was so amusing I don’t think even comedy skit writers could have dreamed this up.

Like the siren on an approaching police car, I heard the small child crying as she came closer …

Well I’m sure it started out as a cry …

It had actually reached that stage just a notch below scream proportions …

Anyone who’s been around kids knows it.

I mean it’s the kind of cry that makes you think somebody lost a limb …

If nothing else, I’m thinking that a trip to the hospital is in somebody’s future.

At last I see the source of the hideous noise…

A noise that makes me wonder why I drank so many bourbons last night and how on earth did I manage to be in THIS Woolworths on THIS day at THIS time?

The source of the noise is a young girl perched on her mothers’ hip …

As I see her, she stops her tirade …

She has blonde hair and is wearing a pink dress with a blue vest over it.

Her face is blotchy and red …

Little tears running down her face …

She’s actually pretty cute …

Oh it’s nearly heart-breaking …

Then that god-awful noise starts again …

Yeah, it’s no longer heart-breaking …

I just wanna kill the kid …

Anything to make her be QUIET!

But then I’d have to leave the slow lane … and it’s my turn next!

Oh well …

The mother then puts the little girl down on the floor, takes her hand and walks past me on their way into the store.

I think, Geez is that safe? Didn’t the kid break a limb or something?

She walks past me …

She looks at me with defiance… it’s that look that all mother’s who have screaming kids in public have …

I try to give her a sympathetic smile …

But the kid’s piercing scream continued …

I think my smile looked more like a grimace with one end of my mouth upturned …

Okay, I made a stupid face.

The mother continues walking and then I hear her say in a nice but firm tone …

“Look darling, Mummy doesn’t think you’re a dog …Mummy just thinks this is easier is all”

What … the … heck?

I mean this kid is like five years old …

Isn’t this the kind of thing that you’d only bring up with, oh you know, a psychological practitioner of some sort?

In confusion, I stare at their backs as they walk away from me.

And I suddenly notice …

The kid is wearing a vest that has a leash coming out of the back of it!

The leash is attached to the mother’s wrist!

Yep, the mother was walking the kid like it’s her dog!

Oh. My. God!

I have heard about these things… at the time I thought it was a strange image …

I also thought that for some kids it could be useful …

I remember one time, when I was about five years old; I lost my parents in a shopping centre.

I cried for ages until someone took me to the information desk with the microphone and they called out for my distraught parents to come and collect me.

If I had had a leash, I wouldn’t have had to go through the stress and worry …

And my parents would have obviously benefited …

But you know … it NEVER occurred to me … that a young kid would watch you put the leash on the dog to go for a walk … and then watch you take out a similar contraption to be put on herself …

And be offended!

I thought the psychological trauma wouldn’t kick in until much later in life …

That poor kid!

What a smart kid though!

Man, that’s the kind of trauma that makes you become a serial killer isn’t it?

Mental note: Don’t be living in this town in about 15 years time …

Dear God … did the kid see me?





Dear Dad, Yet Another Confession to Make …

20 10 2008

As you know from a couple of previous posts my Dad’s computer has been holding me hostage. (Relevant post 1 and relevant post 2)

Whenever the thing turns off, it refuses to turn back on for at least 24 hours.

The last time it happened, it magically turned back on as if nothing was wrong.

I vowed never to turn it off again.

My vow was as stupid as the people who advertised the Titanic as the ship that can never sink …

Yep, the universe had its revenge over my “vow”

Everything went swimmingly for a couple of days …

I kept the computer on …

I remembered to remove all my writing drafts and ideas to another computer …

Yep, fine …

Until …

One night I was playing World of Warcraft … (computer game)

I spent hours previously downloading all the new rules in the latest update …

It took three hours to get it all done …

Then another couple of hours fiddling and understanding all the new rules.

Then I go to do my first quest of the evening …

I see the dragon, I plan my tactics, I select him with the mouse and press the key for certain destruction …

Then my apartment is plunged into darkness …

Yep, a freakin power failure!!

I sat in darkness for all of a minute before power was blissfully restored to our tiny apartment …

Except for the computer …

Like a movie star throwing their first hissy fit; it refuses to turn on.

I stand there looking at it with my mouth gaping open and opening and closing my fists …

But … But the Dragon … I was going to kill it …

I launch an expletive into the air and flounce over to my laptop …

My laptop is over three years old …

It can run the game with all the video settings on low …

The graphics look like I’m running an Atari or Commodore 64.

Argh!

I try to turn the computer on every hour without success …

24 hours later, the computer once again springs into action with a song …

It acts like nothing was ever wrong …

It pretends there is no bad blood between us …

But I know it is smirking at me …

After some hesitation, I settle into playing my computer game again …

Just when I think it is safe …

The computer shows a black screen …

Followed by a blue screen …

Not the blue screen of death thank god but instead it has a message for me …

It reads: “The computer is shutting down. Updating 1 of 12.

A freakin Vista Automatic Update!

What the heck!

Why was there no warning?

Why didn’t it tell me to close down all the programs before it closed the computer down …

Argh!

I sit there frozen in front of the computer screen …

I can’t think of anything to do except watch in horror …

The computer shuts down and then attempts to restart.

The computer gets half way through the re-start before it stops …

It goes silent …

That amber light is flashing again!

Like Oliver Twist it’s saying “Please sir, I’d like some more” …

More power I’m guessing …

Like a doctor in the emergency room on a TV show I’m running around yelling “Get it some more power, STAT!”

Except nobody can hear me.

Anyway, I’m sitting here now at my Laptop …

Eyeing Dad’s computer from across the room …

But not with pride as he did; contempt is my friend this day.

So I write to you, Dad.

Yes, you!

This is my confession to you, as I need to inform you that …

I’ve thrown your impossible computer over the balcony …

I’m sorry …

There I said it …

It was the only way to take the smirk off its face …

Yeah, I know computers don’t have faces but this one did …

Yes, I should say Yes and not yeah …

I know you think I’m joking …

But I’m not …

I just snapped …

I watched it fly over the railing with a smile as I sent it on its way …

To the computer after-life …

I sighed with relief as it hit the ground with a crunch that echoed across the courtyard.

I grin to think of your reaction to this letter.

I’m also informing you that if you ever purchase another computer product made by DELL; it will be over between us!

All my love, Silvergirl2010.