I’LL TAKE MY CHANCES WITH THE COW

I love the ocean. I enjoy sailing in it, surfing in it, and diving in it, but despite this, I just can’t bring myself to venture further than waist deep into the West Australian Indian Ocean. Why? Because I am petrified of sharks. I don’t mind diving with them – where I have at least a chance of seeing them come and can breathe under water, but what I don’t like, is sitting on the surface whilst a shark rears up from underneath and slices me in half. Continue reading “I’LL TAKE MY CHANCES WITH THE COW”

SOCIAL MEDIA

Who are you? Seriously? Do I even know you? Why are you trying to add me on Facebook? 

What would make this whole experience less painful is if Facebook were to amend its restrictions on profile viewing. I understand the need for privacy settings, obviously I don’t want complete strangers being able to view my entire world – but surely if you are adding me then you clearly believe we are friends. So, on that basis, I should be allowed to view your profile in its entirety before deciding if I want to accept your extension of friendship? The whole friend thing can be quite a stress inducing ordeal. At what point does it become acceptable to send a Friend Invite. Do we have to spend a certain amount of time together? Is a single interaction at a 3rd party event enough grounds to add you to my inner circle? In someways the whole thing is quite stalker-esque. I can understand that for 10% of your connections, it presents a useful way of keeping in touch, and what with the ever shrinking world, a way to keep up to date with your close friends life changing experiences on the other side of the world. But let’s be honest – beyond that, it’s a method by which we can judge others and engorge our own egos, perv on bikini photos and laugh at people who have ballooned since high school.

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SENSATIONALISED MEDIA

For the first time since 2009 (when I spent 3 months on a small island in Honduras with no technology), I am beginning to feel relaxed… despite the noisy 2 year old who shares our lives.

I think, one of the reasons for this (aside from the weather and stunning scenery) is the laughable media in Australia. The pieces are poorly written, often with spelling mistakes, and the topics are regularly beyond amusing; “Wayne’s car was stolen last night from outside his home in (insert obscure township name here). The local citizens rallied together in an effort to locate the culprit…” At the end of the story, we usually discover that they all chipped in a fiver and bought him a new vehicle.

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SIBLING RIVALRY

Wow, what a tricky area… love, turmoil, joy, companionship, fights, and jealousy.

I realised something today after a lengthy chat with my littlest sister (Hello Spawn of Satan, I am sure you are reading this) – I no longer look at my sisters, The “Spawn” (the youngest) and The “Adopted One” (She’s not adopted – she just looks nothing like anyone else in the family… Hmmm) and feel envious of the way they are treated by the family. I think it’s because for the first time I am starting to feel like an adult. I have a family of my own, an income, a home etc. I feel my life is full. In a good way.

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ETIQUETTE

When did we stop addressing people formally? After moving to Australia, one of the things I struggled most with was the informality with which people addressed each other. As an Englishman, receiving a phone call from my bank and being addressed by my first name still sends shivers of discomfort through my body. I am of the firm belief that until invited to do so, a formal relationship should be maintained where one is addressed by surname or title. This is even more important if you are trying to sell me something… Continue reading “ETIQUETTE”

COURTESY

Lesson 2 of living in Australia… Courtesy is dead.

How hard is it to say thank you when someone lets you pull out in your car, or holds open a door for you? Today, I was in the supermarket with my daughter in her pushchair. We stepped aside to let a lady pass by – I awaited the customary “Thank you”, but nothing came… Obviously in my slightly irritated frame I abruptly retorted with a sarcastic “You’re welcome” too which the surrounding customers promptly turned around and stared at me, as if I was the weird one in the one sided exchange of courtesy. When did it start costing something to smile or be polite to one another?

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TEACHERS

I am sure that this topic shall enrage many people, but it has bothered me for a long time. When did teachers become so detached from reality? Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate the invaluable efforts of the educators around the world. They play a pivotal role in shaping the future of our country, but should that render them exempt from exposure to the GFC?

My sister, the Adopted One (see previous entry for clarification on that!) was a teacher. And the incessant complaining enlightened me to the unrealistic expectations of the profession. Let me clarify their grievances:

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PARENTING

Having recently discovered the best blog known to man (Thank you – you’re a lifesaver!), I have begun to appreciate fatherhood more. Nobody really tells you what it’s going to be like. I remember when I first found out that my wife was pregnant… I was so overcome with joy. For some reason though, people feel the need to take that away from you. Middle aged, resentful men take this opportunity to say that “you’re life will never be the same… no more clubbing and late nights”.

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