Today is Tuesday

I have this post written in my head which is quite serious and weighty but today, after a shocking night of little sleep due to the weather not children (February, you are SO fired) I am feeling abnormally chipper and frivolous. Lucky we’re stony broke as otherwise I’d probably be at the fabric shops and the bookshop spending up b.i.g.

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Did I tell you I’ve started swimming laps again? Man it feels good. And bad in that ‘so this is what having a heart attack feels like’. Last week I got up to 40 laps in the 25m pool which would have been awesome had the day before I’d been swimming in a 50m pool and could barely muster f.i.v.e. paltry laps without my heart simultaneously bursting out of my chest and liquefying out my mouth. It wasn’t that I was stopping at the end of each lap in the 25m pool, I was doing blocks of 10, but there’s clearly a difference when you get a micro-stop at the 25m than just having to slog it out to 50.

Today I did 50 laps in a 25m pool. You know the first 20 laps were hard and then something just clicks and I kind of feel like I could just become a swimming Forrest Gump. The water doesn’t resist me anymore, it sort of carries me along, I feel it rush over my lips as I exhale with each stroke. Bubbles rush down the length of my body as my hands push through the water and I just keep going, lap after lap, breathe one two three, breathe two two three, breathe three two three. . .  

Anyway, I’ve decided to invest in some short fins because, according to she-who-knows-everything-about-endurance-swimming Fifi LaStupenda, they are good for building up your fitness.

She has also made me do something really stupid. I’ve said that I will swim the Curl Curl to Freshwater ocean swim in April. Being the type to barrel into things without clearly thinking through the ramifications I said yes before really thinking about what would be involved (swimming! in the big blue ocean! with the sharks! and a gagillion other people who have been training! with a swell! and waves! no ends to rest at! and oh man I’m screwed!) or the cold hard reality that it’s 2km. TWO FUCKING KILOMETRES! See you in May! Just look north for the Rescue chopped hauling me out of the water in a big net. OH THE HUMANITY.

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So I’m enduring Eddie McGuire interviewing Wayne Gretsky (at one point Eddie refers to the puck as a ball. God help us all) and I ask Chef, ‘so who’s Wayne Gretsky?’ and Chef, being a bit of a die hard baseball and ice hockey fan (I know, if someone wants to sponsor us to move to Canada or the US just call me) does the whole wide eyes and head shaking caper and just says more slowly, ‘Wayne Gretsky, Poppet, Waaayyyne Gretsky’.

I point out that saying his name slower is not actually revealing any more detail to me about who he is so he tells me he’s simply known as ‘The Great One’. OK, but why? WHY?

Then he tells me in language I understand, ‘He’s like the Gary Ablett of ice hockey except without the dead hookers. Or Tiger Woods without the mistresses‘.

That man of mine, he cracks me up.

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I just watched Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir score 110 something in the most beautiful routine AND she was wearing what can only be described as a gorgeous classic costume. Apart from being a classical beauty she skated beautifully and Scott Moir – man, is he the only clean shaven male partner? He is a total package.

I think I missed the Russian (?) couple doing the Aboriginal dance, which might have been a good thing. Putting the whole cultural insensitivities to one side, by all accounts it took the concept of  a nude body stocking to a whole new level. And not in a good way.

The Americans are on now and are dressed to do a Saturday Night Live homage to John Travolta but Ave Maria is playing! They seem to be handling the monumental stuff up well and the routine seems to fit to the … wait. They’re meant to be dancing to this? Then what the hell are the costumes all about? In the kiss and cry and MAN someone attacked them with the Bedazzler.

Oooh, here are the Russians. She looks like she’s got a bad case of varicous veins while he’s come off second best from a battle with the American Werewolf in London, which the music seems to confirm. Their costumes are very distracting. And I’m with Belinda Noonan, the best commentator ever – perfunctory at times, incredibly knowledgeable, sometimes scathing and occasionally generous with the praise –  the whole routine seems slow.

And the Canadians win it!!! WOOT!

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You know how Felix bought his own guinea pig from the boys across the road? Well the other two babies died – well, one died overnight after falling ill during the evening (they think it was a tick although couldn’t find one on her) and the other is missing so there’s a happy cat or dog somewhere in the neighbourhood. Suddenly CocoTaco feels very special indeed. Photos to come.

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We had a conference call w/ the physio and OT of The Spastic Centre and the physio and OT of Sydney Children’s Hospital to discuss all things OO (Oscar’s Op). You know, the closer it gets the less anxious and stressed about it I am. I’m sure it should be going the other way. I guess that’s what happens when you’ve known this was coming since your kid was 18 months old. Oscar was there for the tail end of the phone call and the girls at the hospital wished him a happy birthday for Thursday (I KNOW! 12 on Thursday!) and asked him if he had any questions. And bless him if he didn’t ask about what he’d get to eat when he was there! The fact it comes around on a trolley was a winning answer!

Surgery is tentatively Tuesday 20 April. In for a few days until pain management is under control. In old-fashioned casts from knees down to toes for three weeks then back to outpatients to take them off, do castings for new AFOs (aka super legs) then new casts (the more lightweight fibreglass variety but still not waterproof due to there being wound sites) back on for another three weeks. No weight bearing whatsoever during that time. At all.

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I’m organising our 20 year school reunion and today saw me bed down the date after some discussion with friends – the last weekend in October will see many of us to gather and be totally weirded out that we left school 20 years ago. Crikey.

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Onward!

New favourite

When I went to uni I started out doing an Arts degree at Sydney University – I knew I wanted to be a writer but I also wanted to be a lawyer or a geologist or an archeologist.

The lawyer part was ditched because you needed an outrageously high UAI which I was never going to get and the girls I went to school with who were going to be lawyers were all so smart and I was simply not in that league. Or so I told myself.

I adored geology – the structure and science and pragmatism of it all as well as the history of it all. But if I was to study geology I had to do a bridging course in chemistry and physics and again my self-doubt denied me that path as there was no way I could possibly do that because I wasn’t smart enough.

The archeology thing was a precursor to the geology thing. Mum told me that being an archeologist involved working in places where it was hot, dusty and there were a lot of bugs. I’m not sure she realised my decision not to be an archeologist was largely based on this. And that apparently you need to be fluent in German and again, I thought I was so bad at languages. (Just ask K about Year 8 or was it 9 or was it 10 German and my inability to translate Gruss Got Gerbel (or some such name) as I thought it was Good God, Gerbel and I wasn’t going to blaspheme out loud. OH the piety of a teenage Christian)

So as you can see – I was one cotton-headed ninny muggins all those years ago.

In that first year I studies philosophy, medieval history, classical civilisation and English. Yeah, I was so going to be employable. I loved it. Sure, I failed philosophy (well, I got a PassX which means  we’re passing you but you have to leave to close your door on the way out).  I just didn’t get it, I mean, I had this tutor who tried to tell us we never remembered what we’d dreamed about the night before or that when we were dreaming we didn’t know we were dreaming or that we couldn’t dream in colour or some such nonsense and there was all these readings that I just kept thinking ‘oh FOR FUCK’S SAKE’.

Medieval History was my absolute favourite and no, the fact we had the hottest tutor in the entire university was not the only reason.

I made a conscious decision to make a whole new band of friends, some sort of rebellion against my constant self-loathing and comparing myself with and feelings of inferiority to my friends from school. It was, all in all, a really great year. I met Chef, I lost my virginity and was just being that stereotypical uni student of studying, partying, working in a fast food joint and being chronically broke. Good times.

Chef was at uni in Bathurst (a city about three hours west of Sydney) studying accounting, which he hated. But Bathurst also had what was then regarded as the best journalism degree in the State. So, being the largely driven by my libido, deeply in love young self, I applied for a transfer. There were all manner of hoops you had to jump through in terms of essays and the like but hey, I was willing to do anything for love.

To my absolute surprise I got in. I think we found this out around the time Chef got his letter from the university explaining that not turning up to yearly exams automatically fails you and well, combined with those fails earlier in the year we won’t be seeing you next year. Awesome.

But off I went. On a small campus in what was a course full of A-type personalities there were students in years above you that were held in awe and reverence. I remember the bastion of the department regaling us with stories about this one student and how she was destined to greatness. I can’t remember if he told us she was going to have a baby and that therefore that greatness was quashed or if I’m mooshing together stories about her I heard over the subsequent years of my course by which time she had left.

Anyway, she now works with Australia’s national broadcaster in Perth and quel surprise having a baby was not the death knell of her working life. Twitter has not only allowed me to stalk her but get to know her just a little more than the awe and myth of almost 20 years ago.

So when I wrote about my swim in the ocean the other day I also twittered about it. She asked if I knew Colin Day and his song Beautiful World. Well I do now.