deird1: Rapunzel's tower (Tangled tower)
Today is the first of December, the first day of summer, and, for the majority of Australians, Christmas Tree Day.

Today is the day we put up the Christmas trees.

For those northernly folk who may be thinking this is horribly early, you should be aware that our trees are not generally alive, and therefore will not be brown and dead by Christmas Day. As the proud owner of a fake tree, I put it up, in good Aussie form, on the first - and my house remains Christmassy for a full month.

We are now watching A Muppet Christmas Carol, and feeling very seasonal. Although I admit, I won't feel truly Christmassed until I've also watched Die Hard, While You Were Sleeping, and Gremlins.
deird1: Joey and Pacey at the prom, with text "I remember everything" (Joey Pacey remember)
Been reading lots of conversations about the American Pledge of Allegiance - and was struck, once again, by the fact that I have vivid memories of being in primary school and having to recite the Australian version - and yet, I have never met another Australian who remembers doing this.

It goes like this:
I love God and my country,
I will honour the flag,
Serve the queen,
And cheerfully obey my parents, teachers, and the law.

I swear I used to have to say this every Monday morning during school assembly. Even if I'm wrong about that, I've certainly said it enough times that I know the whole thing off by heart.

And yet, no-one I've talked to ever remembers doing this. So... possibly I'm delusional?
deird1: Buffy looking bored, with text "don't care" (Buffy don't care)
...the train driver suddenly stops the train and announces "Sorry folks, we'll be stuck here until they've put out the fire on the track ahead", and everyone shrugs and goes back to their newspapers, paying little attention to the smell of smoke wafting through the carriage.

(This is all happening right near the city centre, mind.)
deird1: Fred squeeing, with love hearts (Fred squee)
The American equivalent would probably be The Mickey Mouse Club.

When I was little, Young Talent Time was one of the staples of Aussie television. It had a whole bunch of kids (mostly teenagers, I think) performing different songs together, every week. A lot of the performers went on to be pretty famous singers.

And then, when I was six, the show finished.


I'm now halfway through the first episode of the new, revamped Young Talent Time.

It's not really my style, and I can see a lot of things I'd like done differently... but, at the same time, here are all these young Aussie kids enthusiastically performing their way round the stage, and grinning at the audience, and I CANNOT LOOK AWAY. THEY'RE SO CUTE AND AWESOME.

...I think I'm going to have to watch more of this.

curious Mez

Dec. 5th, 2011 08:43 am
deird1: Rapunzel, hanging just above the ground, afraid to touch down (Rapunzel nearly to the ground)
So, I'm wondering:

For all you overseas folk, when you start planning your Exciting Trips To See Australia, what things do you think of seeing?

(brief digression approaching...)

When I went to Munich, everyone said "Oh, you've got to see [exciting landmark]! It's the best!" ...and they were always talking about
1) Neuschwanstein
2) Ludwig's (other) castles
3) Oktoberfest
4) Dachau

Whereas, when I got there, my favourite bits were
1) the Deutchesmuseum
2) the Residence
3) the English Garden

And, in fact, the vast majority of things I found interesting were barely mentioned in guidebooks at all.

(...back to Australia)

Anyway, it occurs to me that there's a big difference between:
a) What tourists want to see in Australia
b) What I think tourists want to see in Australia
c) What I think tourists should actually see in Australia

My answer to b would be the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Uluru, and possibly surfing.
My answer to c would be much longer and more rambling, but would definitely include an Aussie-animal sanctuary, the Great Ocean Road, Sovereign Hill, and Port Arthur.

But, for a? Not a clue.

So - when you think about the stuff you'd like to do as a tourist in Australia, what's on your list?
deird1: Anya looking bored, with text "Please, continue. I find your problems fascinating." (Anya problems)
I feel like a traitor: for the first time in my life, I will not be barracking for my footy team.

It's the Grand Final today, and the two teams are:
Collingwood (my team)
Geelong (my family team)

Generally, I support Geelong unless they're playing Collingwood - in which case I'm a die-hard Pies supporter. Carn Pies!

Today, though, is different. You see, Collingwood won the Grand Final last year. And Geelong hasn't won it for a while. It is, strictly speaking, Geelong's turn.

Plus - if Collingwood wins, I'll be happy. If Geelong wins, I'll also be happy. But if Geelong wins, my grandmother and my nephew will both be thrilled.

So... go Cats! Woo!
deird1: Dawn raising an eyebrow, with text "srsly?" (Dawn srsly)
We went to a bushdance last night, and like all good Aussie bushdances, it began with the Heel-And-Toe Polka, and featured such music as Click Go The Shears, Botany Bay, and Home Among The Gum Trees.

For people who are unfamiliar with these:
- The Heel-And-Toe Polka is taught to every single primary school student in the country. It is extremely easy, and very fun.

- Click Go The Shears is a song about sheep shearing (also taught in primary school). No-one remembers the verses except for the person playing the song, but everyone knows the chorus, which should be sung as loudly as possible.

- Botany Bay is a song for convicts, about leaving England behind and shipping off to Australia. Very catchy...

- And then there's Home Among The Gum Trees, which is about the myriad delights of living in Australia, with a particular focus on vegemite, clotheslines, rabbits, and rocking chairs.

Any Aussie could sing these to you instantly. They're our songs, and we love them.

That's Australia for you: sheep, convicts, rocking chairs, and the polka...
deird1: Dawn glaring at Buffy, with text "Dawn Summers demands an explanation for this bullshit" (Dawn bullshit)
You guys don't have fairy bread?!


How do you survive?!!!


This bready, sprinkly goodness is the most wonderful party food in the whole world, and you guys are missing out. Go make yourselves some immediately.
deird1: Faith watching Buffy walk away (Faith and Buffy)
If, for some reason, you ever decide to write a story set in Australia, here are three useless facts to help you:

1) Our powerpoints have switches. You don't just plug an appliance in - you plug it in, switch the powerpoint on, and then you can turn on the appliance.

2) When catching a taxi, it is customary to sit in the front passenger seat, not in the back.

3) The phrase "yeah, nah..." is beloved by all Australians, and is used as follows:
"How was the footy?"
"Yeah, nah, it was fine."

"Do you think it's going to rain today?"
"Yeah, nah, it'll be okay."

"Are you driving yourself there?"
"Yeah, nah, I'm taking my car."

"Are you driving yourself there?"
"Yeah, nah, some friends are giving me a lift."

It can be used to express agreement or disagreement, with no indication of which one you're going to mean. It's the perfect "I acknowledge that you have just said something, and I am about to reply" phrase.

And we use it all the time.


Feb. 11th, 2011 12:38 pm
deird1: the gaang hugging (Gaang hug)
1) Meat pies are wonderful, but sometimes hard to eat without dripping meat all over your desk.

2) Just a few weeks ago, my knowledge of Egypt could be summed up as: pyramids, Cleopatra, sand. Now, I can talk for ages about the current government, the past governments, possible future presidents...

3) Melbourne was apparently at 95% humidity this morning. And believe me - you could TELL. Am glad my work has air conditioning.

4) Today has three options, as follows: I get a call telling me I have the job and am awesome; I get a call telling me I don't have the job because I lack sufficient awesome; I don't get a call at all, and have to spend the ENTIRE weekend in nail-biting nervousness. Really really hoping it's not the third of those.

5) Tomorrow I'm going to Miss Marple's with my family. They have yummy food that is remarkably filling. I should probably stop eating now, in preparation.

6) If we must change our national anthem due to Jeff Kennett's dislike of the word "girt", I fully support Adam Hills' idea of using the same lyrics set to Working Class Man. (Actually, this would safely preserve the "girt" bit - which is useful. It's always good to have a running joke the whole country can share.)

7) No idea what to take a photo of today. Any suggestions? If not, you might have to put up with a photo of my pillow when I wake up at midnight and realise I still haven't taken one...

that poem

Jan. 12th, 2011 11:04 am
deird1: Azula, with a slightly snarky expression (Azula eyes)
Also, for those of you (probably no-one) who wonder where I get some of my Australia-related post titles from, here's a poem most Aussies have heard over and over again.

My Country )
deird1: Toph looking pretty (Toph pretty)
(Because summer is making an appearance, and I'm all thinky.)

Most people who don't live here seem to think that Aussie weather is:
1) hot
2) really, really hot
3) like, way too hot to move
4) HOT

It's a little more complicated than that.

a few points to bear in mind )
deird1: Faith looking thoughtful, with text "deep thought" (Faith thought)
"morning tea"

Apparently it's only ever heard of in Australia and New Zealand. (Along with "afternoon tea".)

But seriously? The Brits jolly well invented the morning tea break - do they really not use the term? *is baffled*

(For those who are sadly unfamiliar with our wonderful vernacular: morning tea involves snacks of some kind, eaten at about 10am. It doesn't necessarily involve cups of tea.)


Nov. 21st, 2010 07:44 am
deird1: puppet!Angel brooding, with text "brood brood brood brood brood brood brood brood brood" (PuppetAngel brood)
Half an hour in direct sunshine (the rest of the day under portable shade in the form of a parasol) and my arms are bright red.

The Aussie sun is not kind.

Went along the Eastlink freeway yesterday, for the second time since it opened. Wasn't driving, so I had the chance to look at the weird, weird scenery.

Like this:

two more photos of weird things )
deird1: Mai and Zuko cuddling, with text "you're so beautiful when you hate the world" (Mai Zuko hate the world)
Just been having a big forum discussion about what "sauce" is.

sauce, ketchup, and too many tomatoes )

(Also, just to stir the pot: America, I don't know where you get your weird naming conventions from, but "marinara" means it comes from the sea. It should have fish in it. The stuff you're mistakenly calling marinara is "napolitana".)
deird1: Sokka, with the picture he painted (Sokka picture)
This post by [personal profile] vass reminded of something I've been meaning to discuss: Australian ads.

More specifically, the fact that Australian ads never ever change.

lots of really short videos under the cut )
deird1: Buffy looking bored, with text "don't care" (Buffy don't care)
First it was the election.

Now it's the Grand Final.

Seriously, can't our country just make up its mind?

Note for uninformed people: The Grand Final ended in a draw - something which has only happened twice before. Now they have to play again next Saturday...

In other news, I spent Saturday watching the GF, bowling, going to a restaurant, and then going to a 21st - at which I fell asleep. Long day.

Yesterday I kept doing... well, the exact same surprising thing I was doing last weekend. It's going pretty well.
deird1: Vimes lighting a cigar using a swamp dragon, with text "Fabricati Diem Pvnc" (Vimes)
This is the one time of... well, ever... when I get passionate about the footy.

The Grand Final is tomorrow! Carn the Pies!

Tensions are running high in the office: loud jokes are being made about the parade today (with "It's Collingwood marching, so keep an eye out for pickpockets" being a running theme), and lots of Collingwood fans are stubbornly wearing black and white.

For those ignorant foreigners in our audience, the footy is played here:

And tends to involve a lot of this:

Also, Collingwood (my team) are the most depised one of the lot...



deird1: Fred looking pretty and thoughful (Default)

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