Fireworks

I’m living in a pretty rough area, and there are always a lot of loud, rowdy noises through the night, on any given day of the week. Tonight, being a Friday, I suppose my neighbours are feeling especially celebratory because it sounds like they’re letting off a series of fireworks. This actually happens pretty often – once on like, a Tuesday, which was kinda weird.

Now, I love fireworks more than any other thing in existence. They are my all time favourite thing of all things ever. Once, when I was about 19, I was living with my best friend, Katt, and we heard fireworks one night. I was so excited, and I ran outside to see them straight away, but we lived in a duplex and only had a small, covered courtyard out the back, so I ran down the driveway to watch them from the street. It seemed that I had been too late – I didn’t even hear any more fireworks noises – so, with a heavy heart, full of disappointment, I went back inside and that was that. The next day, however, Katt informed me that the fireworks had, in fact, been gun shots from a drive-by shooting incident. I was suddenly not so disappointed that I hadn’t seen the “fireworks”.

Ever since that incident I have never again run outside to try and see the fireworks when I hear them going off in the neighbourhood.

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A Brief Introduction to Brutus & Murder

Earlier this evening I came up with a decent idea for a post about my two dogs – Brutus and Murder – but, as usual, nothing has gone to plan and I’ve run out of time to construct anything that could do justice to the topic. Of course, it is partially their fault that I don’t have time to get things done. I spent the majority of my night trying to clean up the mess that they had created for me while I was out at dinner last night – it was a spur-of-the-moment decision to go out with a friend, so I forgot to shut any of the doors in my house before I left. My dogs recently shattered my back door, so I can’t lock them out when I leave and I compromise by shutting the doors to my bedroom, the toilet and the bathroom, where their favourite things to destroy are kept, such as: makeup brushes, facial wipes, shampoo bottles, bras, pyjama pants, blankets, toilet paper, shoes, towels, sheets… I could go on. Usually when they destroy something it’s a mild inconvenience, other times it’s just plain cruel.

Like last night, for instance, when they decided to rip open my feather-down pillow. I had no idea that a feather-down pillow was so full. My entire living room is now covered in fluffy, white feathers – it looks like a Winter Wonderland scene, only infinitely more depressing. I didn’t even know where to begin with trying to clean it all up – I don’t own a vacuum, or even a real bin – and I was too tired to contemplate a more efficient solution than crawling around for what could be hours, packing fistfuls of feathers into a plastic bag. So I went to bed last night without even considering making an attempt to clean it all up, and I chose to continue to ignore it before work this morning. On the way home from work today I agreed to sell my old iPad and arranged for the buyer to come around to my place at about 7:15pm to pick it up, which worked perfectly with my routine. Then, of course, 7:15 comes and goes, and there’s no sign of them – there’s a storm forecast for tonight, and it had started raining a little by this time, so I didn’t think it unreasonable that they be a bit late. By 7:30 I still hadn’t seen them, but was sure they couldn’t be far off. I decided to kill some time and sort out my downloads, but by 7:45 they still hadn’t shown up, or text to say that they were going to be late. I had put off going for a shower until after the transaction and thanks to spending the time before our scheduled appointment cleaning up after my dogs, and this person’s complete lack of punctuality, I wasn’t able to go for a shower until 8:00. I was too exhausted to wash my hair last night, so I had to wash it tonight, which means showering takes longer, and I had wanted to straighten it as well since tomorrow is Friday and I like to feel special on Fridays. I also knew that I still had to at least post something today, or risk failing the NaBloPoMo challenge twice within the first week, and I was (and still am) determined to watch an episode or two of Parks and Recreation before bed. After all the buttfuckery of this evening I was forced to cancel/reschedule at least one of my three “tasks” for the evening, and since I refuse to fail NaBloPoMo, and I really love Parks and Rec, straightening my hair has been tentatively re-booked for tomorrow morning.

And all of this can be traced back to the fact that Brutus and Murder just can’t help but destroy everything I own and make my life as difficult as possible. And really, that’s a perfect summary of what to expect from the upcoming record of life with these two.

Did I mention that it was my only pillow?

Bring Your Children to Work Day

Today my bosses (who are a married couple) decided they would actually come in to the office for once – with two of their children in tow, of course. It made for a very interesting two hour visit.

The elder of the two (I’m assuming he’s around four or five since he’s not at school) had already peed with the door open twice within half an hour of being in the office, and the second time he managed to rip the soap dispenser off the wall which honestly impressed me. Now, I don’t particularly mind anyone peeing with the door open, but when the toilet is about five metres from my desk. He also spent about five minutes straight repeating “Mum, I want more, mum, you need to turn it on, mum I want put more in there,” while his mother tried to fix a problem with her husband’s phone, ignoring the child demanding that he be facilitated in his attempts to put things through the shredder. Unfortunately the shredder was full, and since nobody could be bothered to empty it the child was eventually told that he would have to play with the Legos. So, of course, the paper he had been feeding into the machine was left on the floor, scattered across the walkway and was completely ignored by everyone who walked over the top of it.

Then the two/three year old woke up and joined us in the office where he proceeded to drop his fruit on the floor, which his father told him was no longer safe to eat and threw in the bin. Not long after this he poured his cup of water on the carpet as well, then the two boys spent ten minutes playing with the water cooler, letting the spill tray fill up and flow over onto the carpet. Mum made a request to dad to intervene, but he just responded with “I can’t stop them,” and continued actively ignoring his children.

Soon after this the children’s attention was again redirected to the Lego box, which they emptied all over the floor before moving on to the next activity. The toddler chose Closing Your Fingers in a Sliding Door – he shut himself on the outside of the door so that he was on the balcony, and when he started to cry mum panicked, fearing that he’d fallen off, and she jumped from her seat exclaiming “Oh my god!” Dad’s reaction to this natural display of motherly concern was the berate his wife in front of their employees for “always carrying on about nothing” and continued to lecture her that she “needs to look at the situation before freaking out and carrying on like a fuckwit.” Top advice, Colin.

While this was going on the elder boy took the opportunity to re-ignite his younger brother’s screams by inviting him back out onto the balcony and slamming the door shut in his face as he approached. Somewhere around this point was where mum decided it was time for everyone to go home and requested that the children begin packing up the toys they’d spread throughout the office. Obviously the children are not about that life, so after 15 minutes of pretending to argue with them, mum and dad ended up cleaning up the mess themselves. Of course, this was when the children decided they wanted to “help” and proceeded to throw fistfuls of Lego back across the floor while their parents attempted to scoop the hundreds of plastic pieces back into the toy box. It was at this point that Kim decided to tell mum and dad not to worry about cleaning up, and suggested that it be my “job for the afternoon”. I managed a tight-lipped smirk in response, since opening my mouth at that point would have resulted in losing me job – not sure if I really would have minded that much, to be honest.

I am not usually a fan of children – there are a few exceptions to this rule, and I don’t deny that babies are hella cute – but I am especially not a fan of children who are being raised by people that put zero effort into parenting and allow their spawn to behave like assholes with a benign smile on their faces, as if they’re enriching everyone else’s lives by inflicting these beasts upon us. While I can respect that most young children simply don’t know any better, I still can’t stand the smug, self-satisfied smiles on their faces that betrays the fact that they do know better and are enjoying misbehaving and being disobedient little cunts.

Melbourne Cup Day

Once I realised this morning that I had failed to post anything at all yesterday, I felt severely demotivated. I can’t believe that I was barely two days into the challenge and I already fucked up. Like, I put my name on a register and everything. What if people actually see this? Now I’m just another lazy douchebag.

But it’s stormy here tonight, and I’m showered, and snuggled up in bed with my puppies, and it feels like the perfect environment for writing. I just wish I had a nice hot cup of Milo, or the day off work tomorrow. Speaking of which, I got drunk at work today! That was a first time experience that I never expected I’d encounter. It was Melbourne Cup Day (oh, how I despise the despicable event) and Kim bought a bottle of wine for us to share after lunch. Little did Kim realise that I’d barely eaten since lunch the day before, and I’m a notorious light-weight. I didn’t get roaring drunk or anything like that, but I did make a tipsy call to my boss to ask if we could go home early. He said no. And Kim and I rearranged the furniture in the house/office so that she could sit closer to the air-conditioner because it’s too hot where she was previously sitting, 80cm to the left of her new position.

Which brings us to our topic for today: the fucking Melbourne Cup. For anyone who isn’t familiar the Melbourne Cup is “the race that stops the nation” – a high-profile horse racing event, and an excuse for a public holiday and the privilege of getting drunk before noon. It is the social event of the year, the highlight of every rich moron’s fiscal year, this is the only time of the year that anyone gives a fuck about horse racing and they give more fucks about this day than any other day, with the exception (maybe) of Australia Day. Let me put this into perspective for you – growing up in an Australian public school I dreaded the day every year when we would be forced to pick a name out of a hat and sit on the floor and watch this barbaric event. Of course, when I was protesting watching the race as a six-year-old it was because it was boring and I wanted to read my library books, but it didn’t matter what reason I gave my teachers, I was always forced to sit and watch and participate. Whoever picked the winning horse won a free tuckshop lunch – the highest honour my school could bestow upon a student – thus perpetuating the nation-wide ignorance and continued celebration of this blatant disregard for animal welfare. As an adult I am filled with a sickening, impotent rage at the injustice of it all. It baffles me that the protesting of this ritual isn’t screamed louder and taken more seriously, and that so few care to even raise their voice. And it’s not just about advocating animal rights, and causing a scene; the number of businesses, TV networks, celebrities, politicians etc. that endorse this spectacle with their participation and support is appalling. You might not be the people flogging these animals, pumping them full of chemicals, and literally murdering them in a pool of blood once the strain of their physically exhausting, torturous life overwhelms their bodies and they succumb to injury, but you’re just as bad for not refusing to take part in this uncivilised display of savagery and disrespect for life.

The horse racing industry as a whole is a horrifying concept, it seems like the kind of thing you’d read about humans doing a hundred years ago and think “Goodness, how barbaric, people were so cruel back then, thank heaven we’ve come so far and nothing like that would be allowed today.” Except it’s allowed, and celebrated, and greatly anticipated.

“Statistics show that nearly all horses in the race today will experience bleeding in the lungs, while 50% of horses racing will experience bleeding in the windpipe. 89% of these racehorses will have stomach ulcers. All will be thrashed by a whip.”

“During training, these horses spend approximately 22 hours of every day alone in a stall the size of a bedroom, resulting in digestive and behavioural abnormalities. They are drugged to mask the pain from being overworked, and fed food with unnaturally high energy content.

The average ‘career’ of a racehorse is 3 years, after which they are ‘discarded’. Every year, 10000-25000 ‘discarded’ racehorses who didn’t ‘make the cut’ are slaughtered for dog food.”

These quotes were taken from a post on Facebook that my mum tagged me in today, after I called her on my way home from work to seethe over our mutual hatred for this “sport”. Immediately after the race today a horse name Admire Rakti died in his stall after suffering a heart attack, or potentially from internal bleeding, and another horse named Araldo got frightened and crashed through a fence, breaking one of his bones which apparently necessitated that he be killed on site. And those are just the two that were publicised this afternoon, not to mention those who will die later on tonight/tomorrow from internal bleeding, or broken bones, or just because they’re too tired to go on. Some of these horses will be killed by the damage they sustain from performing in the race, some of them will be shot.

I often see the argument “but they’re bred for it”, as if that is supposed to justify humans taking advantage of an animals trust and obedience, and abusing it, torturing daily, stripping the beast of any dignity, showing no respect, feeling no love, peddling life for profit. A lot of children in the sex slave trade are “bred for it”, based on that logic raping a child is fine, I suppose? “Oh, but it’s different, it’s a child you’re talking about, these are just animals, it’s what they’re made for.” NO IT’S FUCKING NOT! It’s life! It’s exactly the same, and no animal is made to be run to beyond the point of exhaustion, kept in cramped conditions, denied freedom, and pumped full of hormones so that they can be further beaten while being forced to literally run themselves to death.

 

In this day and age, the fact that something like this still exists is beyond appalling. It is a colossal disappointment and a stain on us all as a society for allowing it to continue.

Journal Entry

Today has been the most ridiculous day of my entire life. I had a not-so-great night last night, but I’d gone to bed feeling optimistic that I’d get up early today and get my chores done, and be productive, and it would feel great, and I’d feel on track and capable. Instead I dragged my ass out of bed around 8:30am, got stoned, and put on the laundry. I cleaned up all of the crap my dogs have destroyed and spread across the yard over the past couple of weeks and I was feeling pretty good, despite the fact that I desperately wanted a cigarette and couldn’t have one because I’d left them at my friend’s house last night. Then, as I was hanging out the linens, my dogs – Brutus and Murder – started play-fighting, and Brutus came sprinting out the back door. Of course, Murder came barrelling behind him with zero coordination and ran into the back door. This is a common occurrence, and I always rouse on them for running in the house because Murder has no spatial awareness at all, and he crashes into everything at top speed – I don’t know how he hasn’t broken his skull yet. And just as I had always feared, Murder’s fat ass knocked the sliding, glass door off its tracks, and I watched in slow motion as the door stood for a moment, wobbled in the strong breeze, and slowly crashed forward onto the cement patio, completely shattering the top panel.

I couldn’t do anything but stand there in complete shock for a few minutes, then I finished hanging up the sheets and went to the fridge for a cider. I cleaned up the loose glass and stood the door frame back up before calling my mum and telling her about the situation. I happened to glance into my bottle at one point during our conversation and I discovered a large fruit fly had died in my drink, which was still mostly full. I continued drinking it anyway, but the more I looked at it, the more it looked like a normal fly and I just couldn’t shake that icky feeling, so I didn’t even get to finish my drink. Also, while talking to my mama I was pulling the remaining shards of glass out of the rubber seal so that they wouldn’t come loose and fall of their own accord and possibly impale one of my not-undeserving dogs. So naturally, while trying to pry free a particularly stubborn shard, my hand slides slowly down the edge, slicing open my pinky finger. It didn’t seem much deeper than a papercut, but there was quite a lot of blood, and it stung like crazy. I put a band-aid on it, because I’m a grown-up and that’s what grown-ups do, and it’s doing fine now, but I still haven’t bathed the dogs, and I really need to bath them today since we missed bath day last week and they smell like ass after a rainy week.

Ironically, I had been looking forward to spending the morning being productive, thus filling myself with inspiration to write a positive post for the first day of the NaBloPoMo challenge. In fact, just a couple of days ago I drafted a post about making a conscious effort to appreciate the positive things that happen in my life, rather than constantly cataloguing and capitalising on any slight negative. I guess I’m still working on putting that into practise, and I mean, come on, who has this many things go wrong in such a short space of time? My dogs have also destroyed a patch of carpet in the living room, which I still haven’t told the real estate about, but I don’t know how long I can go without telling them that, technically, the house doesn’t have a back door anymore. Also, I’m broke and have no way of being able to afford to fix it any time in the foreseeable future. So you can understand my succumbing to the negative and brooding over the injustice for a moment, I’m sure.

On a positive note, I have ordered a kebab feast (with my mum’s PayPal) to be delivered at 6:15 tonight. I am very much looking forward to this, I have been craving a kebab or burrito for so long. It’s been months since I had a kebab, and longer since my last burrito. I miss burritos.

Let this post stand as an example of almost everything you can expect to encounter on this blog – good intentions, inevitable sulking and self-pity, dogs ruining my life, movie-style “accidents” that would never reasonably occur in real life, food. I had hoped to come up with something much better for my first NaBloPoMo post, but I’m honestly feeling so unmotivated and disinterested now (and I’ve had some more cones and another drink), and I actually think this is a pretty fitting start to things. At least I still posted something, rather than backing out before I even start, like I do with everything else – but that’s a story for another time.