Friday, June 25

Jumping On The Bandwagon.

The Bandwagon. to which I refer,  is "Facial Hair"!

It is really a given for Males, but it is an optional extra, to grow said hair.

For Females it can be a downright hideous embarrassment. Unless, of course, they can join some Circus in which they which might become a 'Bearded Lady'.

However, this is not the usual outcome of Post Menopausal Hair Growth. It is not enough to benefit a career in the Circus. Nor,  is it slight enough to ignore, and hope no one will notice.
I have heard of women bleaching the increased hair, in the hopes it will never be noticed.

The trouble is, bleached hair has a tendency to glisten in the sunlight, or any other light directed in the direction of said hair.
No woman wants to be noted for a splendidly gleaming blond moustache, or beard.
Blond takes on a whole new meaning in that scenario.

I digress here, a little. My gripe is not with hapless women, who decide to let Nature take it's cruel course.

No. My gripe is with men, who 'stupidly' grow their whiskers to grubbily stain their chins, and chubby cheeks. They are to be seen in the media, often, proudly sporting this "Derro" look.


I see it to be associated with men, who are either alcohol addicted, or drug addicted- ie, the 'Derro Look'!
Here in Oz, we all know, that Derro, refers to a lost, or drug addicted  soul. Some condition, which precludes them from properly shaving in the mornings, or evenings, or whenever they are required, for public appearance.
I see it as downright laziness, in the 'taking care of personal hygiene' vein.

I also see it as an inordinate vanity, as I understand this hideous, whiskered, and  'overgrown' look, takes an awful lot of time to perfect.

I suspect Don Johnston has a lot to answer for, in this ugly 'craze'.  (But Hell, didn't he go out of vogue so long ago???' Along with white suits, and rolled-sleeve-suit jackets??)

I realise I am "Older" and my opinions dont count a jot, today. I still feel as though I can b!tch about what I find unattractive, and ugly!

I see it, on an evening Show Host. I am told he has grown the 'Stubble' to counteract the opinion that he has a 'Babyface'.
He should be glad he looks so young!
In his older age, he can still possibly 'pass' for someone much younger.
I think, at present, he looks like someone who is imitating his old Grandfather, or Great Uncle.

I feel like sending him a message, saying "Go and wash your face!! And have a bloody good close shave, while you are there!"

Goodness knows, it is YOUTH that seem so be so worshipped these days.

I should add here, in defence of bearded folks, of which my Beloved Brother is one, there are some people who seem destined to suit beards.

BB was nagged constantly by our Mother to shave off his beard of some 30 odd years.
When he did, she was shocked beyond belief, and wished she had not nagged, so consistently, for all those years. He became unrecognisable, &, she declared, looke like her youngest brother.
An aging Aunt told him he should have known his beard had become an "Institution" by the time he was over 50, and he was to grow it back ASAP!
He did, and has no intention of shaving it anytime soon.

My two sons, have had various facial hair configurations, over the years, but at present are both clean shaven.

I would never try to dictate or even suggest, what they should do with their very personal whiskers.
I do, however,  feel, I can express an opinion on Public Figures.

Peter Gabriel, In Your Eyes.

Friday, June 18

Lost Opportunities.

I never seem to have my camera with me, when I see wonderful photo opportunities, these days.
I saw a beautiful, lemony, buttery,  coloured leaf, just begging to be picked up, or at least photographed, but I was wrestling with dogs, so could not stop to seize the chance~ or the leaf!

I have learnt, as time passes me by, the need to grab these chances, and run with them, because they never come around twice.

Of course these images are old ones, captured in other times.They still bring me a measure of pleasure.

I am rather a hoarder, so I still have the images on the computer, in my collection of :Oldies, but Goodies".

The dogs were due their annual 'shots'. So today was the day, and off we went. Of course they both knew exactly where they were going, so they were nervous, and sort of excited.

Honey was really very good, once we got to the Vet's. Leo disgraced himself vociferously, barking at a small and rather innocent looking, small, and baldly clipped dog.

In the ten years we have been attending the same Vet, I have watched both the male Vets go from coloured hair, to now, completely white. I guess, it is a stressful occupation.
They both got a clean bill of health, and Honey was declared to be in excellent condition for her age.

Leo was surprisingly good for the Vet. That is why we choose this particular Vet. He seems to have a special way about him, with our dogs. The discolouration of the moosh is just 'one of those things'. No explanation, or particular reason. He is healthy, his teeth are fine, and his coat is 'Lovely'.


I have been trying to catch up on my blog reading, which has slipped a little behind lately. 
Below, is one of my Meat Pies.

I read my American friends' mention of pies, and know, the Pies to which they refer, are usually a far cry from the Pies to which we refer, Down Under.

Here, in Oz or indeed NZ, 'A Pie', almost always means a "Meat Pie", usually smothered with Tomato Sauce. They are a particularly 'Sporting' food item, being the food of choice for Footy watching males, and often, females.

The Meat is usually steak or minced beef, and the casing is pastry, usually a shortcrust base, with a flaky pastry top. With lashings of thick Tomato Sauce.

None of these Sissy,  Sweet Pies for Footy Fans! None of your girly biscuit-crumb crust, or cream filling.
No! The Pies of choice are hot, meaty and no doubt, artery clogging!

We are told, they may contain as little as 15% of actual MEAT. However I prefer not to go there. Not that I would ever eat a 'Meat Pie', I had not made myself. And, it would never be Beef!

They are often seen decorating the front of Footy Fans Boofy chests! They might also be seen ~shall we say, making a 'Second Appearance'.
To use an Assie expression, as a 'Technicolour Yawn'.
However, this is usually after copious quantities of beer also, have been consumed, though not always.

We do have other pie varieties here. Apple Pie is not the Institution it is in America. However, it is quite popular. Also Lemon Meringue Pie is a favourite, as are Custard Pies.
As a child my favourite was Blackberry Pie.

I make Apple Pies and Fruit Pies for Gom. He seems to enjoy them, which is just as well, because I do not have a sweet tooth, and he has to eat them all by himself.

Roy Orbison, California Blue.

Friday, June 11

Small Treats

Many of my recent Treats, have been in connection with Morty, our new little Cat Boy.
He never ceases to delight me, with his lovely little body, and his delightful poses when he is totally relaxed.
I like to think he feels totally safe, in our house, with his new 'brother and sister'. His Big Brother loves to play with him, and his older sister is wary, but at times quite tolerant... unless he sneaks up to sleep beside her, and then she gets a little indignant!

I am so fascinated by those little pink paws, so clean and neat. I love that Morty is so fastidious with his personal hygiene and his cleaning routine.
We have had cats in the past, but I suppose I was too busy to study them very much, and in the everyday hustle and bustle of life, did not appreciate just how graceful they really are.

Gom is not exactly well, but he is about as good as he can be. He continues to take utter delight in Leo, who is his Best Friend in All  The World!
We cannot work out why Leo has suddenly developed a stained surrounding of his mouth. His diet has not changed, so we are left wondering. It is obviously something in his saliva, that is causing the staining. He has quite a pink bottom area now, because he licks himself in that area, to ensure cleanliness, I guess.
Any tips, or suggestions are welcome!

Another shot of Morty, on the computer desk, where he comes to commune and smooch with me each evening. He is not a cuddly cat, but he can be very smoochy when he wants to be!

We have been out shopping for a furniture item. A new lounge suite to be precise.
We have heard all about the slump in sales, and how desperate businesses are, to increase sales.
It also happens to be the end our Australia's Financial Year at the end of June, so one is expecting bargains galore, with heavy discounts.

Obviously we dont look prosperous enough, or poor enough, or something, because we were struck with a singular lack of enthusiasm to sell us anything.

Plus al distinct lack of energy in trying to sell us any items.

With one notable exception.
A very portly Gentleman, who claimed to be the " Maufacturing Owner" of the store. He sized us up, and had a stab at our ages.

"Come with me Good Lady" he oozed to me. "I know what you need, Darling."
Steering me over to the recliner chairs.
"You get to be a certain age, you need some comfort, you need some aid."

I am lead to the recliner chair section of his shop. I am shown the 'Fabric Covered Chair'. Gom is tagging along in the rear.
"This is lovely, so comfortable. But when you get to Sixty, Sixty Five... Seventy,"- studying Gom & I for reactions- "You need this Leather".
Indicating a handsome chair, of very soft and attractive Leather.
"You might lose a little liquid, not good. It will smell on the fabric. What you need is this Leather. You can clean a little spill. It will still be a nice chair".

I found myself fascinated with his plethora of GOLD. His large chubby neck was adorned with heavy gold chains. One carried a huge heavy gold cross, another a rather strange looking item.. an eye? something quite exotic looking. I get the feeling it is some symbol of significance to Good Fortune. I am not sure, but dim recognition stirs in memory.

I note the heavy wide gold rings adorning several fingers. The really elaborate, huge gold watch. The huge heavy gold bracelet chain adorning the meaty wrist. His neatly "Grecian 2000" dyed hair. His attractive hazel/brown/green eyes, peculiar to his Mediteranean Heritage.

My eyes become fixated on his faded, and obviously, very vintage, checked polyester, short sleeved shirt. It appears to have some small cigarette burns on the right front below the collar area. It also has some small paint stains on the lower left of the front. I am slightly puzzled as to why a man of obvious wealth, would wear such an old and worn shirt. Is it his Good Luck Charm Shirt? I privately wonder to myself.

We are pressed to sit and operate the Electric Leather Chairs. Yes, yes, they are indeed very comfortable. For the price of one, we could possibly have an all inclusive Cruise to some Tropical Island Paradise. Gom makes 'considerate' noises.
Mr Richly Orante, Salesman/Owner, luckily gets an incoming call on his Ostentatiously-Loud-Ringing Mobile Phone, and we gracefully and gratefully slide out of the shop. His beringed fingers are making clutching motions in our direction.
We do not actually run, as we are leaving.
However, the thought does cross our minds.

We have not made any hasty decisions regarding the seating.  We will keep open minds.
However we are amazed at how little ground retailers are prepared to give, when desperate to make sales.

Guns N Roses, November Rain

Friday, June 4

Human Traits for Inanimate Objects, and Some Vegetables and Fruit.

It has long been a joke in our family, to regard inanimate objects as possessing human traits or characteristics.

Or to regard fruit and/or vegetables to possess very real human characteristics.

My post titled "Interviewing the Oranges"  demonstrates this belief. (I do perhaps feel some folk were bewildered by this post.)

We have in the past had pot plants which had names. My mother had an 'Arthur', in the best tradition of Mad Magazine's Arthur. My Mother's plant was a huge Mostera Deliciosa, and it used to grow huge aerial roots, which would embed themselves in the carpet if a vigilant eye was not kept on them. It sometimes 'wept' when it had been overwatered. 

 Our Mother sat in her favourite chair, positioned beside this huge plant. Often at first glance into the lounge room, our mother was not always visible, because of Arthur's huge leaves. We used to laugh about it, and declare that one day we would find a small pile of bones that would be remains of our mother, after Arthur had devoured her.

I swear when we were all gathered in her warm lounge laughing and enjoying each other's company, Arthur laughed right along with us.
Arthur's tears were not always induced by overwatering.

Arthur grew to be so huge he had to be retired to the garden, where he ~or was it she? ~ fruited happily, and grew to truly monstrous proportions..

Keeping the family tradition alive I had a huge Aspidistra which lived in our lounge and other lounges various dwellings, where we lived,  and she was called Gracie, after Gracie Fields, who sang a song about the Biggest Aspidistra in the World. I really did love that plant, and was amazed when it rewarded me with the very secret and quiet little white flowers that are rarely seen.
A friend had given me a beautiful wooden plant holder to house Gracie, and it was with sadness I gifted Gracie and her holder to another good friend when we moved over here to live.

As to other inanimate objects, cars are things which require some respect. I once had a very old small Morris Oxford car. It served me so faithfully for the years I needed it, and it never let me down. I was sad to see it go. I also once owned a Torana, which was a true Aussie. It never let me down either and I cried when I had to sell it because it was 'surplus to our needs', once I had given up my career to go Hotelkeeping once more with Gom.
The car we have now has a name, though I seldom use it. When I was not the prime driver I didn't tend to think of it in terms of it's name. Now, however, I do, because I need it to serve me faithfully.

My Mother was inclined to keep her electric appliances for long stretches of time. She swore it was because she genuinely cared about them, became fond of them, and above all, treated them with respect and reverance. She had one such ancient toaster. She kept it in a cupboard,  covered with a cloth, when it was not in use. When it began to give the user small shocks, it was with great alarm I declared she must  get a new one. She laughed and said it was not malicious, she was quite sure it was just toying with us, and would never really hurt us! The fact that it erratically changed settings & seriously burnt the toast, seemingly at will, from time to time was 'just a quirk'. "Just to keep us on our toes!" she laughed.

When she became ill, I wasted no time in getting a replacement... which promptly broke! I took it back, and had it replaced, but you may imagine my mother's mirth over it all. She was convinced the old toaster was 'laughing at me'. And, bedevilling the new one to boot!

This is just Morty, ignoring all and sundry. I just threw this pic of him in here for a little light relief.

I do not currently have any pot plants with names. Our current house is not really conducive to keeping pot plants. Last time we had a cat, it ate all my African Violet's flowers, so perhaps it is just as well, with Morty romping about the house. Eating the corners off letters and shredding magazine covers!

We have a contrary, ornery, doorbell. It is a cordless one, with two sound outlets. It was given to us by a friend when he learned of the sorry saga of our doorbells. I will not retell those sagas here, but just say, there have been four, each sorrier than the last. All equally useless at the end of the day.

The new doorbell has performed very well... until recently! Suddenly the doorbell has begun chiming at odd hours. Sometimes it does the full series of notes, as though pushed long and hard.
Mornings, chimes ring out. I hastily dress, shout down the barking mutts.

Carefully, descend the stairs. Open the door. No one. Not a soul to be seen, in the drive on the street, on our lawn. Just NO ONE.

Evenings, afternoons, chimes. No One. It has happened when our Son was here staying. It is a mystery how it is triggered.
As it happens, I do believe in ghosts, having had some first hand experiences with such phenomena.

However I do not believe it is a ghost resposible for the chiming of the doorbell. I am sure there must be some logical explanation to explain the 'phantom callers'. I just wish I knew what it is.

Cat Stevens, Moonshadow.