Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Struth Part 1: Parking in North Sydney

[I am in the process of updating my website. I have not touched it in about 3 years. I used to have a mini-blog on the site, but moved to blogger when maintaining it became too irksome. In order to preserve for eternity my loving commentary, I've decided to replicate what I had previously written here on my blog, before blowing away the original. This is the first one, and was written in the Sep/Oct 2004 timeframe.]

OK, we all know how hard it is to find a parking spot in North Sydney. Well, those of us who work there do. But I live here. We live in a three-bedroom unit that has one allocated parking space. But North Sydney Council will not allow me a Resident's Parking Permit because we already have our one allocated space which my girlfriend uses for her four-times-more-expensive car. So I find a free 24×7 space in an adjacent street and park my car there during the week when I'm not using it. Saturday morning 7 August 2004 I went to my car to find a parking ticket under the windscreen wiper, dated the previous day. Sometime between Sunday 1st and Saturday 7th, they've changed the area I parked in from a 24×7 space to a 2-hour only space.

I don't want to read conspiracy in this too much, but it's the Council who approves building applications with inadequate car-parking for the occupants, Council which decides the rules for allocation of parking permits, Council which changes the zoning of existing parking without notifying residents, and Council which takes the revenue from parking fines generated in the re-zoned parking spots.

Very, very annoying. And costly.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Lifelong learning

When I was Uni in 1984 studying Chemical Engineering (?!?!), all the Engineering undergraduate students were required to take what were known as "General Studies" subjects, in a noble but I suspect generally futile attempt to broaden our minds beyond constructing (or destructing) things and drinking the cheapest beer at the Uni bar.

I mainly took subjects based on either what my current girlfriend was doing or what the chick prospects were. Bizarrely, while I was failing "Chemisty 1B", I was getting High Distinctions in the "Modern Novel", and I certainly enjoyed the change in tempo. I figure my mind was fairly broad already from my music and enjoyment of reading.

I distinctly remember the first lesson in one of the subjects. We went 'round the twelve or so students, each introducing themselves and explaining what they were doing there ("Gday. I'm Mic. This was the best of a bad bunch of General Studies subjects, and I'm trying to get onto Jacquie.")

There was this older student in the class, who looked just a little out of place with the 18- and 19-year-olds. He lived not far from the Uni, and was taking a variety of single subjects rather than trying to complete a course, "one's that interest me". He had retired a long time ago, and I have the memory that he said he was an ex-laywer or barrister, but can't be sure of this. He said he was in his late seventies, and "you're never to old to learn." The class, myself included, actually applauded him after he'd finished.

I still reckon that was pretty cool.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Annoying wet days

Granted, it is coming down a bit harder now, but this morning, walking down Martin Place, it was little more than a mist. Naturally this meant that the huge, gaudy and pointy umbrellas were out in force, hiding brave men from the ferocious onslaught of the weather.

Getting down to work, I ended up wetter from my perspiration in the humidity than I was from the sparse drops of rain.

Here's a newsflash for you all: It is only water.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Changes in my life since 6 October 2007

Some changes since the big day:
  • I no longer have to use that pretentious-sounding word "fiancĂ©e"
  • The older single woman at the bus-stop now talks to me
  • I have to remember that date forever
  • I have to remove my ring before playing basketball
  • I have to remember to replace it after playing basketball
  • My hand clinks on the bus grab-rail

Monday, October 22, 2007

Bum buttons

Of all the places on clothing to place a button, the most ridiculous is right on the cheek of the bum. It doesn't matter that the intention of this button is to keep a pocket closed.

I don't think I have a pair of trousers or shorts that have the button intact. All it takes is to scrape your bum cheek against the back of a wooden chair and "rip" off it comes.

Why do they bother?

Friday, October 19, 2007

Oh so alone

There's not a lot of people in at work today. When it is like this, I often wonder if they know something that I don't, like that is a public holiday, or it is "Work From Home Day".

The other thought that goes through my mind is the rumours you always hear about how airliners that crash always have an inordinate number of people that simply don't take the flight, possibly because of some precognition.

Every little building creaking sound has me worried.