The Redneck Invasion

As I am sure everyone has heard, the US Supreme Court has ruled in favour of same sex marriage across all 50 states. However, not everyone is happy about this news. There are (for a lack of a politer sounding term) a lot of homophobic rednecks who feel threatened due to the fact people can marry whoever they love (perhaps Brokeback Mountain hits a little to close to home for them?). Unfortunately the rednecks have taken to twitter to announce they would be leaving the USA…. and would be coming to Australia.

That’s right, the Australian parliament is so backwards that rednecks are seeing it as their homophobic promised land. Who is the leader of this promised land I hear you cry? Well it’s none other than Tony Abbott, who I believe is becoming more and more like Australia’s very own personal Voldemort. Despite the rising support from his country and around the globe for people to have the right to marry whoever they love (including his own sister who is currently in a long term same sex relationship) he refuses to change his mind. It came to a stage when opposition leader Bill Shorten wanted to introduce a bill to the parliament regarding same sex marriage, yet Tony didn’t even have the courtesy to show up.

Now I don’t want this to seem like an attack on Tony just for his views on sam sex marriage. It’s about his entire way of thinking. When you have more Australian flags in the background of a speech than you do women in you parliamentary cabinet, you have a problem. Or when push for coal and fossil fuels because you think green energy looks ugly.

He’s supported by his own personal Wormtail (another harry potter reference, I have to assume everyone has seen the movies or read the books) Joe Hockey. Mr Hockey, Australia’s treasurer, has some stunning views. One of my personal favourites being “rising fuel costs won’t matter because poor people don’t drive” or his advice on buying a new home “get a good job that pays good money”. I’m glad he was there to tell me the last one because I would never have been able to figure that out.

Tony blatantly goes against basic human rights when it comes to asylum seekers. According to the Australian Human Rights Commission All people have a fundamental human right to seek asylum from persecution. Instead of helping these people find a place away from their war torn countries where they are being persecuted. Yet Mr Abbott decides this means he can throw alyssum seekers into a detention centre in Indonesia which is full of sexual assault and abuse. 


This man is skyrocketing Australia all the way back to the 50’s and seems quite happy to do so. We need a change, and we need it soon. Let’s hope we can join the rest of Western Civilisation and legalise same sex marriage, it’s the first step of many that we need to take to start making this world a better place. 

Gym or Netfix

have been debating recently if I should get a gym membership or a Netflix subscription.

I’ve decided to write up the pros and cons of each, and hopefully it will help me (and maybe even help you) to figure out which one is best.

Gym: 

Pros

  • Will hopefully allow me to pull a Chris Pratt – turn me from a loveable chub to a ripped hottie who is somehow even more loveable than before
  • Improves my general fitness and health
  • I know it’s the better option….. although I can’t think of any more reasons

Cons

  • It’s more expensive
  • It takes a lot more will power
  • It’s going to be a lot more painful than sitting and watching Netflix…

Netflix

Pros

  • I can finally be up to date on all the popular shows, this will lead to be being able to talk to people again.
  • I can binge watch old favourites
  • It’s cheaper than a gym membership
  • I do love movies and tv, so that is going to count for a reason

Cons

  • Admittedly it’s detrimental to my fitness to stay in bed and watch a season (or two) of TV…
  • It will cost me what little of my social life I have
  • That is really about it…

The gym membership is definitely the healthier option, which I guess is the better option… but the minute I get a job that pays I will get both a gym membership and a Netflix account! Then we can see which holds up better…

The Little Things

Prepare to go deep, we’re gonna get emotional and I may cry… Grab some comfort food and read on, dear reader.

I was sitting at the McDonald’s at Central Station when an elderly couple came and sat at the table next to me. At first there didn’t seem to be anything out of the ordinary about this couple, but after watching them I noticed how much they enjoyed and embraced the little things in their lives. I first noticed this when they were discussing what they wanted to eat. The husband seemed unsure of himself, not being a regular customer at McDonald’s he was unsure as to what he was able to order. So his wife said she’d surprise him as she went off to order. The old man took his seat, looking around the restaurant, all the while seeming perfectly content. He didn’t pull out a phone or a book or even the news paper, he was perfectly happy to sit and wait. When his wife returned she surprised him with a new item on the menu, saying that she wasn’t sure but she hopes he will like it. Now I’m sure you all think this is very trivial, but I promise there is a point! (And you may find the story even gets better so bear with me). Despite this being a trivial interaction, it was the joy that sat deep in their eyes as they went about their business. You could feel the love they had for each other radiating, and they seemed so happy to just be spending a day in the city together.

I feel in our society, we are so worried and occupied with the end product of whatever we are doing that we forget to occasionally take a step back and just enjoy the journey. We rush to work, then we cram as much as we can into our days so we can get that next promotion, then we race home to catch the next episode of whatever TV show is currently the most popular, only to fall asleep and start the cycle over again. Always rushing to get to the next stage in our life. Our spare time is spent surfing the web or being too exhausted to really do anything. We work ourselves into the ground and because of this we feel the need to treat ourselves more regularly. Yet if we start to treat ourselves everyday, it becomes less of a treat and starts to just become part of the routine, and this defeats the purpose of a treat. You need to take the time to enjoy it, life isn’t about a race to the finish line, it’s about all of the little moments, every step you take along the way.

I eventually got chatting with the elderly couple, and only very briefly. I never learnt the wife’s name, but the husband was named Bill. (For the sake of the story let’s call the wife Mary). Mary informed me that they were in the city to see a doctor, I found out that Bill was very sick and they didn’t think he was going to get better. He was developing the early signs of dementia. Mary feared that soon he wouldn’t even be able to remember her name. They had been married for almost 45 years. Yet Mary hadn’t given in to the sadness or the hopelessness of the situation. She knew that she didn’t have much time left with Bill, or at least with the Bill that would remember her.

I wrote the story above over a year ago. But couldn’t bring myself to publish it at first, I can’t say why, perhaps I feel I didn’t do the story of Bill and Mary justice, or simply I didn’t want to admit I go to McDonald’s. But a year on this story has stuck with me, I haven’t forgotten about Bill and Mary. I still think of them and wonder if Bill’s health has gotten better or if his mind has given way to dementia. About Mary and if she is still able to sit with Bill and talk about what they are having for lunch. I can’t say why this story has stayed with me for so long, or even if it will affect anyone else. But I do know I need to share this story, even if it’s just to get it out of my system and into the blogosphere.

I think I need to get it out because, personally, I get caught up with the big things. What am I going to do when I graduate? What is my dream job now? Do I have enough friends?

When instead I should just be allowing myself to enjoy the little things. That phone call from grandma, movie night with the family, lunch with the friends I do have.

I’m not saying don’t sweat the big stuff, because you should, it’s sweat worthy stuff! But you can also enjoy the little stuff at the same time.

Learning For All The Wrong Reasons

I study music and journalism. When I tell people this the two responses I usually get is “that’s an ‘interesting’ combination” or “Aren’t you worried about getting a job?” I’ll start by answering the question. Of course I’m worried about getting a job, I’m terrified that I will stuck working as a waiter for the rest of my life. However, I would still have this fear if I was studying law or medicine or even teaching. I’m a firm believer that you study because you want to learn something, not because you want a job. I understand that for some jobs, like a doctor, I would more than prefer for my doctor to have studied medicine so he knows what he/she is doing. Yet above all else, I want my doctor to be passionate about his/her job. I want them to walk into the operating theatre every morning and get the same feeling inside their gut that I get when I walk out on a stage or finish writing a piece I’m beyond proud of. I want them to be their because they want to be there. I don’t want a doctor who is a doctor because their parents wanted them to have a stable job. This person, who is doing the job out of work stability rather than passion, will never be as good as the doctor with passion.

I’ve known too many people who have changed out of degrees that they loved doing because they didn’t see a job at the end of it. That is not the reason to study. People need to study to learn about what they love, not so they can have a job at the end of their degree. If you hate what you do then you are no better of working at McDonald’s as your career. Don’t be afraid to chase your dreams. Passion is what leads to great things. If we didn’t have passionate people who dared to go against the norm then we wouldn’t have a lot of the comfort and technologies we have now. You need to perceiver and continue to strive towards your goals. The reason not many people make it in the arts is because the majority of people give up before they have a chance to really explore what they are capable of. I think this is because we are forced to grow up so quickly.

I recently turned 20. This was terrifying leading up to the big 2-0. I started to feel old, that I should get a job at the bank, get a mortgage, marry and have 2.5 kids. But after a mild panic in which I tried to grow a beard (unsuccessfully) and tried to get myself an adult job (also unsuccessful) I came to realise that I was young, like really young, like I’m still 5 years old in the big scheme of things. With the length that people are living, I haven’t even reached a quarter of my life yet. So why am I panicking? In all honesty I don’t have an answer. Maybe it’s a societal thing, maybe in an instinct we all have that tries to keep us from failing so we opt for the easier option.

I do think this panic comes from a deep seated fear of failure and in turn disappointing those around me who have supported me for my entire life. People feel the need to make those who support them proud of them, but they forget that the people who care about you will be proud of you no matter what, they just want you to be happy.

So don’t give up on a dream or drop out of a uni course that you love because you don’t think you’ll get a job. If you are passionate enough, and you are determined enough, you will be able to find away to make money off of what you love.

My Dog’s Dog

This is rocket.

Rocket.jpg

He is a Corgi-Border Collie-Blue Heeler cross. Or as the family refers to him, a Blue Borgi, and he is most defiantly Dad’s dog. He won’t do anything unless dad has come to see him in the morning, he will even ignore the rest of the family if dad is in the same room.

Eventually we decided it was time to get another dog. Well it was actually very spontaneous. One afternoon dad decided to go look at puppies, he claims it was for fun. That night I get a text saying “we have a new member of the family.” Considering my mum hadn’t shown any signs of pregnancy over the last nine months I had to assume we got a new puppy, I was right.

hudson

Meet Hudson, a pure bred Corgi cross eating machine. He will literally chew anything that is around his mouth, from food to the wall. Despite his obsession with food and chewing anything he can, he is a great family dog, calm quiet and absolutely adorable. And best of all he didn’t seem to favour one person above the rest, which I thought was a bit strange because most dogs will favour the alpha male.
This started me thinking, who’s dog is Hudson, who has his undying loyalty. I hoped it was going to be me and my theory that I am the true alpha male in a family dominated by males would be proven to be true. Unfortunately he didn’t seem to listen to me any more than the rest of the family, especially not like rocket listens to dad. So I started to watch his behaviour more closely, trying to unravel the blank stare that led to the inner parts of his mind, you know the one that tells him it would be a great idea to chew apart the wall. That’s when it hit me, Hudson was rockets dog.
It made perfect sense! He follows him everywhere, he would wait for rockets permission before doing anything, whenever Rocket barked Hudson would understand and listen. I realised that we have bought a dog for our dog.

rocket-and-hudson

Middle Child Syndrome (MCS)

Are you the second born in a family of three children? Are you one of the other two and wonder why your sibling is different? Perhaps they are suffering from MCS or as the profesionals refer to it as, Middle Child Syndrome!

Middle Child Syndrome. The disease of the second born child. Well it’s not an official disease, but many children claim to have MCS. What is Middle Child Syndrome I hear you ask? Good question! MCS is when a child is the second born out of 3 and they feel neglected, this is usually due to the fact that the older child is so devilishly handsome and oh so talented (for those wondering, yes I am an older child) and the youngest is the baby of the family so gets away with things the other 2 children usually wouldn’t be able to. Statistics say 1 in every 3 children per family have MCS.

Now don’t get me wrong it’s not that I think there isn’t such a thing as MCS, but I get neglected just as much as my other brothers do. My parents like to make things equal in our house, in fact I think they are a little biased against me. I had to wait until I was 12 to get my first ipod, yet my brother got his the same year, at the tender young age of 9. This doesn’t seem like neglecting the middle child! I’m sure every family is different, but if the middle children stop feeling sorry for themselves and start thinking instead about all the good things they have in life then maybe the middle child syndrome wouldn’t be a problem any more.

For all we know it isn’t the children’s fault for having MCS but rather the parents fault. Some people out there are just bad parents, if you really treat your children so differently that you buy a car for your oldest and youngest but not your middle child (yes there was a case that this happened) then there is something seriously wrong with your parenting! But for the rest of the parents out there, maybe you need to pay closer attention to how you treat your children.

Another theory of mine relates MCS to the actual physical age gap. For example, if the eldest was old enough to go out clubbing and parting, the youngest was still in primary school and the middle child was in high school having to study every night of course we will feel neglected and left out!! However this does not mean he has a disease, this just means he is the same as every other highschooler out there who has to stay in and study every night.

In conclusion, we shouldn’t be labelling children with made up diseases! After all there is always the possibility that the middle child only has MCS because you say they have MCS!

Ridiculous Warnings and Frivolous Lawsuits

Have you ever read a warning sign and thought it seemed a bit ridiculous that it has to be there?

My personal favourite warning label comes from a superman costume. the warning says Use of This Device Does Not Enable Wearer To Fly. While I haven’t been able to find the exact legal case that required this label to be made it does spark my imagination. Who in their right mind would believe a costume would give them the ability of flight? Whatever happened to make the manufacturers decide they needed this warning is unknown. We can only assume that this label was the result of a very frivolous lawsuit.

The ludicrous lawsuit that launched it all was initiated by Stella Liebeck. Liebeck sued McDonald’s for $2.86 million dollars because their coffee was too hot. In 1992 the 79 year old retiree bought a 49c coffee from McDonald’s. While riding in the passenger seat of her grandson’s car, she tried to add sugar and cream to her coffee. She pulled the lid off and in doing so spilled the entire cup of coffee into her lap. Her cotton pants absorbed the liquid making it cling to her skin causing some serious burns. While this was terrible for poor Stella. I do need to question how she managed to spill the cups entire content on to her lap. As you may have guessed this lawsuit lead to the Caution Hot Liquid that is printed on the coffee cups.

The Ipod shuffle also had a wacky warning when it was first released. Do not eat Ipod shuffle. Now I’m unsure if this is Apple finally getting a sense of humour or perhaps the late great Steve Jobs had reached a whole new level of paranoia. There have been no records of anyone trying to eat their Apple product, but that doesn’t mean someone wouldn’t try if it could score them a quick million. Apple never commented if this was paranoia or pure parody, perhaps it’s a little bit of both.

Is it really the product that’s the problem here or is it the people using these products? Should we really be warning people that the hot coffee they just bought is hot? Where do we draw the line from sane safety advice to ludicrous labels for idiots? If you ask me I think we should remove the most ridiculous warnings and let nature take it’s course.