August 7th, 2008


Before Green Gables

Bookslut reviews the Prequel to Anne of Green Gables - for the 100th Anniversary. Can someone else read it first and tell me if I will love it or hate it?

Not sure how I feel with them messing with My Anne.

So then ... what you got?

Thanks for all your lovely messages and hugs and Facebook flowers - I can't access Facebook from work so will look and sniffle at them later on. But it's nice to know they are there.

I am more sad than I was yesterday but less sad than Tuesday which puts me at the dull, ongoing aching sadness. And I'm at the dazed and confused stage - as in, what the hell happened? did any of this happen? What went wrong? And of course the whole dissecting of this time and that time and when did things start to ... You know. The painful self-torturing stage of things. And the distrust of myself, and my feelings and my assessment of things. If nothing went wrong, and I didn't *do* anything wrong and couldn't have done anything differently ... then, what does that mean? Ugh! Anyway!

I miss him. I'm used to talking to him every day and getting sweet texts. And even though so many lovely people are sending me texts and calling me and making sure that I am not drowning in silence ... I still miss hearing from him. And Russ just checked with me that I at least got all my coffee implements back beforehand! He worried what I would do if I really needed a coffee! Now *that's* a true friend! *smiles* But alas, he still has some books and DVDs of mine and I'm not really thinking about what to do about that at the moment. Maybe he really did still want to be friends.

But I am trying to be thoughtful about this - and look at what I learned and what changed me about the experience. And I did change. In a couple of ways. And that can never be a bad thing or something to regret. Right? I know now that I have to look at my work/career more closely, more honestly and more ambitiously - in so far as, this current situation doesn't make me happy, doesn't fulfil me and ultimately will not help me be where I want to be on a 5 year (minimum) timeframe. And I kind of think I know what I really want -and in terms of lifestyle, I definitely know. So I'm going to look at this 6 month new contract as a probationary period for me to redirect my career path. I'm going to seriously commit to this new direction and see what I can make go of it.

Beijing Smog

So the smog in Beijing has been the focus of the media for the last couple of weeks and as the start of the Olympics rapidly approaches (WHEE - 1 Day, 8 hours and 8 mins to go!), we seem to be getting this information in greater detail. Newsreaders and journalists are doing crash courses in understanding smog, haze, inversion layers, pollutants, respiratory responses etc etc in order to be able to commentate.

And the big question seems to be: will the smog clear before the Olympics? (and will some athletes pull out in order not to risk their health?)

Chairman of the IOC's environmental commission, Pal Schmitt, told the 120th IOC session that China's rapid economic growth has put a strain on the environment, but the city has done its best to tackle pollution.

"The environment is much better than seven years ago," Schmitt said. "They have kept their promises."

Yet in the same article:

Beijing was today blanketed in a pall of smog that cut visibility to about 200m.

Tests undertaken just hours ago by Beijing Now show pollution levels have soared to more than 60 times that of a normal day in an Australian capital city.

Beijing’s Olympic Green is now choking on air with 1730 micrograms per cubic metre – that’s more than 34 times the national standard in Australia and more than 10 times the standard for developing countries.

Pollution experts have warned such levels would endanger athletes’ lives during the Games, particularly in endurance events such as the marathon, road cycling and triathlon.,,24142569-5014107,00.html

Now aside from the fact that there's lots of stuff in the above excerpt that makes no actual scientific sense (1730 micrograms of WHAT?), we can see that *obviously* the air quality in Beijing was far worse than this 7 years ago - woah!

There is something though that has been disturbing me about all this commentary and the underlying subtext, or lack of same. I know that people around me who travel to China for work, rock up in the country and either get a respiratory infection within hours of arrival or find their asthma plays up or come home with some kind of chest complaint. When I ask them about it, they say that the air is so thick that it chokes you.

Additionally, there is the issue of global climate change which is mostly what people discuss when talking about the industrialisation and modernisation of China - that 30 000 cars (was it?) come onto the roads in China every month and that only 3% of Chinese own cars at the moment and that this is the state of the air quality (and environment) now .. what can we predict the future status will be like?

But here's the thing. Westerners can't cope health-wise with the air quality now. There's all this talk about whether or not athletes will risk their health in competing - that seems like a pretty extreme issue to have to deal with at an International sporting event, I'd have thought. The issue though that I am struggling with is this one - we all are going to pack up and go home at the end of this fortnight (plus the Paraolympics that will follow). And we'll probably not really think about the health issues of the smog in Beijing again. But ... people LIVE there, have lived there and will continue to live there. And ... noone really discusses or asks what effects living there all your life does on your health and on the health of the unborn and the future generations. One can only assume the effects are far more severe and disastrous. And yet, we don't seem to wonder whether that's a human health issue that might need to be tackled along with the human rights abuses.

I am starting to think that it's a crime that the Chinese Government is not taking this issue in hand and not making the kinds of decision that need to be made in order to clean up the polluted and poisonous air, not just for the world's elite sportspeople but for their own citizens.


It can't be all bad

Beverly Hills 90210 is back.


"It's going to be a reflection of all the best elements from the initial series, but quite clearly it will have grown with the times also because television is a lot smarter now than it was in the early 1990s," Ten's programming chief David Mott said.

I dunno. If it ain't broke, why fix it?


Jennie Garth (Kelly), Tori Spelling (Donna) and Shannen Doherty (Brenda) will return as guest stars playing (respectively) a guidance counsellor, a boutique owner and a high school musical director, giving Generation X their dose of mature storylines.

What if I still want the less mature storylines? I like a bit of school prank foolery!

Why I love the Liberal Party

Here's a plan: reelect as your leader the one person who has proved he knows how to lose an election and then, get him to run with the one issue that actually lost him the election.

I wish I actually believed in the Labor Government at all so that somehow, this would be slightly sweeter than it is. Still ... it's always interesting to watch utterly stupidity at play, from a purely scientific perspective.

Mr Barnett is under pressure to reiterate his support for a 3,700km canal to pipe water from the state's north, an issue which was popular during the 2005 state election.

``It's going to come down to looking at that resource, how you capture that resource, whether it's dams or pumping below ground water resources, and using the water first in the north of the state,'' Mr Barnett told ABC Radio today.,21598,24142055-2761,00.html


The election has been called not 8 hours ago and I got market researched about my opinions on the candidates in my area. Very bad that I said I didn't know who they were when I totally did and had huge opinions on both when she told me! Oops! Plus - I get to vote between D'Orazio and Whitby!

Too much fun.
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I don't believe in coincidences - another example!

I am smiling as I get off the phone from such a lovely phonecall. Life is so funny and joyful and amazing in the oddness of it all.

I love the randomness of the people that you meet. And if you're lucky, you get to keep some of them along the way. I met some of my closest friends now in my last role before this one at work - different part of my organisation, different location etc etc.

And M just called me. I met M one random, idle Tuesday. I was bored and upset, I think, and wandered down the corridor to the sister group of my work team to find a friend to download on. But all of them were out for the day - pretty much the whole team except for the PA Temp. And well ... I wanted to talk to someone and not have to go back to my desk and she always seemed so warm and happy and welcoming that I wandered in to her office and sat down and chatted. Well! After that we became good friends and I'd always go down and say hi and update her on the ex, and the house we were building and all that drama and my trip to World Fantasy Con and she would tell me about her husband and her son. And she always had time for me and I thought that was really nice of her.

Anyway, I left and we said we would keep in touch and catch up. We haven't actually managed to catch up for coffee in all that time (10 months now) but we have emailed a lot and she has given me the odd call. In fact I think she called me out of the blue the first week or two that I met the boy and after that she was always so excited for me that I'd get these random texts of squealiness about him. What a nice person to be thinking about me on her random Wednesday night or whatever.

But we've had some great long chats, M and I. And I always think of her - and in fact she was the person who inspired in me this idea that I could strive to be happy and live as a happy person. She has this totally amazing perspective on life. In fact, her attitude to life, and the way she responds and reacts and gives advice has been so impressive upon me that I think about her a lot. I definitely thought about her whilst I was away - how would M react to this? How would she turn this annoying problem into a good thing? And she does. And she makes you feel good and uplifted about life and about even the bad things that come along.

So hear I am, a bit sad this evening. And I get a text from her: Are you ok? And so I texted back how I was and she offered to call me. And I have spent the lat 40 minutes listening to her happy, bubbly voice and she has listened to me and ... she gives good advice. And she makes you feel good about feeling bad - not dismissing the way you feel or even changing the way you feel but *changing your attitude* to the way you feel. And the thing I have learned the most from her is that when you can change your attitude towards something, you can actively change your experience of it. And that is a truly awesome superpower to have.

M rocks. And I am so glad and happy that I wandered down to her office that random Tuesday. I think we will probably be friends for life and I will be a better person to have her as my friend. Imagine if I had sat at my desk that day and surfed the internet instead?!

Life really is good. And my life really is great. And this bad thing happened to me this week but the bad thing showed me how many great people I get the honour of calling my friends. Even bad things can be good. (Man, she is catchy!)
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