Rachel's Blog

Mon, 27 Oct 2008
Wants to know about the tattoos.

Last night we returned from my grandfather's house in country Victoria which he has recently sold. Amongst the very very few things left in the house (we were supposed to be doing the final clear-out, but most of it had already been done, which lead to much lazing around without furniture) were copies of the family tree my grandmother had printed up twenty years ago. On looking through it this morning I found this gem describing my great-great-great-great* grandfather, Charles Collard (1802-1891).

On 13 August, 1832 he was sentenced to transportation for life at the Somersey Assizes for highway robbery. He had been convicted before for "Leaving my master and taking a pair of shoes". His gaol report was "believed to be bad", and his hulk report - 'good'. He was transported to Van Diemen's land on the Emperor Alexander and arrived on 12 August, 1833.

The following description of him is given - Height 5'1 1/4; age twenty-one; fresh complexion; oval head and visage; red hair and whiskers and eyebrows, grey eyes; medium nose, mouth and chin; he had many tatoos [sic].

The quote comes from a letter to my grandmother from the State Library of Tasmania dated 1964 and is a relic of the times itself.

*I think. These calculations are tricky.

Fri, 24 Oct 2008
It's for coffee!
Card catalogue coffee table by summerswann

I have spent years looking for the perfect coffee table, now at last I have found it. Or course it's not one that I can go and buy or anything simple like that. At least I have an end goal in mind. Kudos summerswann!

Sun, 19 Oct 2008
That's their KEY strategy.
"Our key strategy is one of creating and producing programs you can only see on Seven, such as Sunrise, Dancing With The Stars and Packed To The Rafters."

Which would work great except that these shows are complete shit.

Networks take on download thieves. - The Age.

Sun, 19 Oct 2008
Star Wars as seen by Abbey for the first time.

Well, thank the Force that worked! We definitely picked the right moment for Abbey to see it; when she could understand it but before she'd heard anything about it.

For the record she is exactly four years and eleven months today, the version we watched was the original cinematic release, ripped off laser disc which gives it a fine nostalgic "taped off the tv" quality, and, in glorious stereo. The time was 4.30 in the afternoon, weather a fine 18 degrees Centigrade.

Favourite moments were the garbage masher - generated the most fear, but also the most relief - and the exploding of the Death Star which resulted in spontaneous applause. It was a real treat to watch this with Abbey, and to remember all the stuff that we take for granted now, such as the initial encounter between Rebels and Stormtroopers and not knowing which are the good guys.

I really thought she'd be more afraid of Darth Vader, but that may develop with further viewings, or perhaps he's scarier in the later films.

Quotes from a phonecall with Grandma Laraine:

"It was pretty sad in the middle where the guy in the brown coat died, but then he could keep talking, which was a bit strange."

"And it was good at the end when Luke destroyed the bad guys and it all turned into sparkles."

More quotes:

"It was good when R2D2 stopped the garbage cruncher from squashing the people inside."

"It was good when Luke and Han Solo shooted the bad guys in the white suits. And now I've got the bad part for you, when the white guys tried to shoot some of the good guys, really near the beginning."

All in all a resounding success! Empire Strikes Back in a few weeks.

An important socio-cultural moment

We are about to introduce Abbey to Star Wars. I am probably building this up more than is sensible. There will be a full report in approximately 121 minutes.

Thu, 09 Oct 2008
Western Spaghetti

I cannot tell you how much I love this animated short by PES. It's Svankmejer crossed with ... with... umm, something not scary at all. (via)

http://view.break.com/534274 - Watch more free videos
Wed, 08 Oct 2008
Conflux 5: A Summary

Day one: Swung swords, injured no-one. Not sure if this counts as a success or not. Announced C5.

Day two: Went to a panel. Drank. Gasbagged. Frocked up. Ate. Drank more. C5 room party (definite success)

Day three: Sat in dealers' room, sold books. Crashed a dinner party. Drank. Gasbagged. Room party.

Day four: Quite blurry. Sold books. Gasbagged. Drank.

Day five: Saved the world. Came home.

I had the most awesome con experience anyone has ever had. I talked to so many wonderful, funny, intelligent people from all over the place. My eyeballs are still rattling around in my skull from exhaustion and everything I left undone before the con remains undone.

I will write more over the next few days about books and dresses and alcohol (the three major themes of the weekend), but sadly I have no photos. I had my camera, but everytime I attempted to use it, it failed, so I took that as a sign to participate rather than document. Which worked well. Cat has some photos here and if I come across any more I'll point them out. But right now I need Heroes.