Surf and sand and psuedo goths

It’s nice to take a break every once in a while, and that’s exactly what we’ve done this weekend, abandoning the big city smog (that we don’t really appreciably live in) to go and show off Luc to my mother, who lives in the geriatric paradise of Port Macquarie. I’m going to suffer when she reads that — if I survive tonight’s pizza dinner, it means she hasn’t read it — yet.

Port Macquarie
The lovely metropolis of Port Macquarie, as seen from the beach opposite my mother’s house. Interesting caption writing is a skill. I never said it was a skill I possessed.

The proximity to beaches and parks in Port Macquarie also provides an opportunity for the kids to have some outdoor play, in this case at a local park (where Di met up with another cloth-nappy using Mum — it’s like a terry-towelling mafia, that lot) and, naturally enough, at the beach. Pictures shortly, but first an interlude at the local shopping centre…

We wandered through Big W — thankfully, entirely Delta Goodrem free — and picked up a few odds and sods, before running into some goths. Well, I say goths, but there was one crucial, nay, vital element missing — namely anything remotely goth-like. These were kids who were students of my mother’s, and they all apparently aspire to goth culture without understanding a damn thing about it.

Now, nobody who knows me would accuse me of having anything gothlike in my nature at all, but even I recognise a few key goth attributes. To quote from the not-always-reliable Wikipedia: “Common to all is a tendency towards a โ€œdarkโ€ sound and outlook…”. Dark was not the word I’d use to describe these somewhat glowy (and almost tanned) individuals. Not so heavy on the cheery smiles and hearty greetings towards their school teachers, your average goth — or at least, not the ones that I’ve known. They do things differently in Port Macquarie, though, and we were effusively greeted in high-pitched tones by all of them. Weird.

Backyard. There's been some rain.
It’s a bit dry in the backyard.

Hello Grandma
Hello Grandma. This is one of my hands.

Hello Grandma Part Two
And here’s the other one. I have two. So far.

Zoe, Queen Of The Swings
Zoe enjoys exhausting all those around her.

Goth Pelicans. Well, they're more Goth than the Goths we met.
The Goth Pelican contigent of Port Macquarie. Goth Pelican would make a great name for a band.


Sand Frolics
Watching the sand frolics unfold.

Throwing Sand
Zoe tries to throw all the sand back into the sea, one fistful at a time.

Sand Tracks
The beach is covered with car tyre tracks. Amusingly, James stopped running for every one, carefully climbing through each track.

My mother starts to wonder if they’ll ever get tired. I’ll be sure to let her know if that ever happens.

As Stevie Ray used to say, it’s on like Donkey Kong… has a review of mine up, and has had for several days now. Missing stuff like this is what happens when you get busy with children, not to mention hooning around Sydney on a Harley. And no, I’m not making that latter part up.

Western Digital MyBook 250GB USB Hard Drive Essential Edition: “Western Digital describes the MyBook range as having a design that’s “iconic of a book”. In practical terms, that means that they were shooting for something that looked like a book, only not very much…”

The paper in the printer goes zip, zip zip…

I feel old.

You’re only as old as the woman you feel, so they say (which actually makes me older than I am), but the context for my decrepit feelings comes, once again, from Playschool.

Back in “my day”, youngun’s such as myself made drawings of Little Ted (the foul impostor!) and Jemima using not much more than a splodge of paint and a badly carved potato… if we were lucky. Thankfully, none of the insane paintings I undoubtedly created as a four year old still exist, otherwise I could be in for some serious psychoanalysis…

Today’s Playschool kids? A digital camera and dye sublimation printer, if you please. Hence, why I feel old…

You can hear it in my accent when I talk…

It’s perhaps a reflection of my mental state at the moment, but I’m heartily amused by the fact that a Russian-sounding town name I just made up a for something I’m writing turns out to be a real place: Birsk.

Not only that, but it’s near what has to be the archetype for all Russian-sounding place names from now on: Blagoveshchensk. That’s just an awesome word in its own right.


Anyway, more publishing fun and, in this case, games, with 3DAvenue’s oft-delayed publication of one of my reviews:

Battlefield 2: Modern Combat (Xbox 360): “It’s undoubtedly very satisfying to take down your foes in an online setting, especially if you’re working as part of a group effort, but it’s here that the game’s most mystifying bug takes hold…”

‘Cause we got a PhD in Advanced Body Movin’

It’s been an interesting week for me, with no doubt. After all, it’s not every week that you snip an umbilical cord, is it? *

Still, some things continue ever onwards, including the tide of the presses. I’ve been published all over the place this week, including two reviews written after Luc’s birth. See if you can work out which ones… kicks off this week’s offerings, with two reviews and a how-to guide:

Canon i9950: “Canon’s massive i9950 is an excellent photo printer at multiple sizes, although the asking price for printer, media and inks means it’s not for everybody.”

Mediagate MG350HD: “The Mediagate MG-350HD is an excellent all-in-one home media solution — as long as you’re not timid about installing a hard drive.”

Wireless networking made easy: “There’s a rather persistent myth that computer networking is hard — that unless you’ve spent three or more expensive years at university discovering the mysteries of TCP/IP you shouldn’t even look at a network, let alone think of setting one up…”

Keeping the online motif going strong, also has another of my reviews up:

Mega Man Powered Up: “For the record, you’re clearly some kind of spineless, talentless weasel if you even look at the Easy option. Yeah, I’m talking to you. If you can’t handle the game, just step away, put on the pink dress and head back towards the Barbie dolls…”

And in the world of Print/Web hybrids, I’ve just had a load of my older features pop up on the NetGuide Web Site, particularly in the Buyer’s Guide section, where you’ll find comparative features on mobile phones, digital cameras, all-in-one printers, LCD Monitors and Budget Notebooks.

Netguide August 2006
At the same time, the latest issue — issue 99, August 2006 — is on store shelves now. In terms of my input it features, amongst other things, a comparative review of budget digital handycams for creating home movies, DVD burners to burn them on, as well as standalone reviews of (deep breath in): Quickbooks Accounting Small Business 2006/7, Nero PhotoShow Deluxe 4, Microsoft Digital Image Suite Plus, iBurst, Congoo, Kaspersky Internet Security 6.0, Oztion MP4 player, Sony Ericsson v600i, Acer 19″ AL1951 LCD Monitor, Condemned: Criminal Origins, The Da Vinci Code (The Game, not the movie, book, or stuffed soft-toy Tom Hanks promotional tie-in), Dragon Quest: Journey Of The Cursed King, Buzz: The Big Quiz and Singstar Rocks (deep breath out).

That’s quite a bit to get published in one week. I’m starting to get an inkling as to why I’m so bleedin’ tired…

*Unless of course you’re a midwife, obstetrician or serial polygamist with a cord fetish. Then the normal rules don’t apply, and you probably snip cords all day long.

The Name Game

Righteo, then. Might as well get this over and done with. Are you there, Son?

Baby, with Elephant just out of shot.
I’m here, Dad

Good. Well, then. This is the world:
The World. Yesterday. Looking the wrong way.
It’s looking the wrong way — we’re more or less on the other side, but you can’t have everything. Anyway, Son, say hello to it.

Hello World.

Right. World, are you there? Well, hopefully you are. Anyway, say hello to:

Luc Kidman.

Luc McIvor Roberts Kidman, to give him his full name.

Baby’s first blog entry

Warning: Slightly sweet and twee content resides within. On par with a Pug Blog, really ๐Ÿ™‚

I got to come home today.

Cuddles time
This is me and Dad, who’s just popped in after my last medical exam. Dad seems very happy.

Car time
This is apparently called a car. It was cold outside, so they put me in the warm car.

Food supply
I made sure that my food supply travelled with me. You can’t be too careful, y’know…

Living Room Floor time
And this is me in my capsule on the living room floor. There don’t seem to be any of those nasty prodding doctors around any more.

Cat time
Apparently this is called a “cat”. I wonder if it will be my friend?

For those of you hanging out for a name (which seems to be all of you, really), you’ll just have to wait a wee bit longer. We have decided upon a name, but want to tell specific family members first — then the broader population. Apparently this makes us evil somehow, which is cool — I always wanted to be an evil genius. Now all I have to do is work on the genius part…