Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Ugg Boot Economy

The Australian economy is doing good. Really good. For a global economic crisis it seems that we crawled out of that one pretty fast. In the past when I have traveled to the UK the Australian Dollar was pretty mediocre. (1997) $1 = 20p. (2005/2009) $1= 40p at best. It made travel to the United Kingdom and Europe an extremely expensive luxury and most people would rather opt for a ticket to Indonesia/Thailand where you could get more bang for your buck.

When the Global Financial Crisis hit in 2008/9, I for one was very interested to see how the Australian Dollar would fare against much stronger economies in the fallout, and to date we are doing so well it is almost mind-boggling.

$1 = 61pence
$1 = 91c (US)

The Australian Dollar has risen about 3 times its worth over the course of one year. For travelers abound this is like winning the exchange rate lottery.

It does however bug me when I live in a country where the economy isn't doing as well as it used to. Back when the Australian Dollar was doing rubbish, people could move to London and work for a couple of years and send money back home which would amount to a generous cash deposit for a home loan. I really don't think that is a feasible possibility anymore. When the average young person makes about £20,000 (at a good end - the runner in my company makes £12,000 - he has to live with 5 strangers and share a room with another dude) and rent is comparable to prices back home. You can spend all your cash on bare-minimum living and have nothing left over to enjoy.

How did Australia achieve this monumental feat in economic turnaround??

UGG Boots.

Everywhere I go. UGG Boots. The UGG Boot stores here have red velvet ropes and black security guards outside to keep the numbers inside to a minimum. When I first witnessed this phenomenon I figured Madonna must be inside the store buying slippers - but no... just regular people.. buying UGG Boots.

UGG Boots are fucking expensive. roughly £250 for one pair. And that's just an average pair, not even a fancy pair. When you come across a gaggle of girls in the street 80% of them are wearing UGG Boots - not just woolly boots, but actual UGG boots. It's the label that matters. I'm sure if you are 15 years old and went to school in your M&S generic woolly boots you wouldn't have anyone to sit with at lunchtime. That is how much of a domination in footwear UGG have achieved over here.

Combine a generation of impressionable girls hell bent on conforming to the ideal of coolness through woolen footwear, and the astronomical price of what amounts to fluffy slippers, and you have an economic recovery point. Praise the Big Merino.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Loneliness is the Human Condition

You know what the world needs now? A Moon Landing. There is never anything good on the news. So much tragedy. Breaking News about kids being molested on family tv shows of the 80's. Breaking News about natural disasters. It's all so depressing. What the world needs now is something to unite us all.

And what better than a Moon Landing. The Moon Landing (if it actually happened) was something that belongs to our parents generation. The grainy black and white footage is a mere nostalgic throwback. Think of how interesting it would be these days with the advances in technology. Space is intriguing. It shouldn't have stopped being intriguing after a few times up there.

I'd watch a Moon Landing. I'd be riveted. space suits and astronauts diets, moon rocks, weightlessness, the earth seen from space through a window projected to earth's satellite television in real time.

I'd feel a sense of accomplishment for the human race watching an astronaut go into space and walk on the moon. Go Team!! I'd much rather talk about the Moon Mission of 2010 than talk about celebrity overdoses.

What does the youth of today have to inspire them? if Chatroulette is anything to go by, then half the population sits around in the nude touching themselves all day long. Lonely people, reaching out to strangers. Gratifying themselves for the world to see. A sea of intimate strangers.

We need the Moon.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Obsessive Nerds Dont Make Good Presentations

I live in Ladbroke Grove. An area of London that has given rise to such musical acts as:

The Clash
Jimi Hendrix
Pink Floyd
Bob Marley
Transvision Vamp

Suffice to say, it's an intriguing area with a rich history. I love a place where interesting things have happened, a history that I have an interest in. There was a talk scheduled for my library in Kensington where a local journalist who has been working on the music scene for the past 20 years was going to do a presentation on the Pop Culture of Ladbroke Grove (1960'2 - Present). Groovy Man. Couldn't wait for that, because you would think being in a Library (a place of learning) there would be some sort of standard for what would be on display.

I have to give the guy credit, be brought with him a wealth of information. What he had with him could have filled an encyclopedia. If there is a place in Ladbroke Grove that Sid Barrett took a wiz on, then this guy would have known about it. The talk was scheduled for an hour, roughly 55 mins later in were still in 1967.

I think half the problem when you are obsessed to the point of having bad fashion and a hunch, is you have no internal cut off point to cull things that the general public might not find as fascinating as you.

I did learn that Richard Branson had a Virgin Record Shop on Portobello Road, and listened to lots of samples of songs that mention walking down Ladbroke Grove, the wonders of Portobello Road. Mick Jagger filmed a weird tranny film nearby (a film that should under NO CIRCUMSTANCES be watched whilst taking acid), Jimi Hendrix died in a house near my flat.

Ladbroke Grove did have a lot of cool things back in the day, I can only hope that there is a resurrection of the good ol' Punk Days (minus the racial riots/skinhead beatings) There is just something very un-punk about having an Accessorise/Starbucks on every corner. Damn You Gentrification.


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Phantom of the Oper-cat

is heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeere


I think its pretty unfair how much shtick you get being a woman around 'that time of the month', I purposely take about 4 months worth of the pill just so I can't be accused of being PMS-Bitchy, because I like to keep Mark on edge, he never knows when it's gonna hit.

Nothing pisses me off more than when I am accused of having a PMS related anger fest and I am actually am having PMS. The worst. I like to hide my tampons around the house so he can't tell - as nothing makes me more angry when mark is correct in his assumption that i'm only being a bitch because its that time.

Hey fuck you ovaries... who needs ya??! oh right, that whole kid thing.. overrated.

I really don't think we are the only ones who get angers. Men definitely get Manriods. I can tell they get manriods because normally they are the calm centre of the storm. the voice of reason. Not so however for that period of about a week when they deserve a good kick to the balls.

Here are some arguments that are 100% Manriod fights.

The washing up: whether dishes are clean enough, whether the glasses were put in the right position so they dont fall off the ledge and smash on the ground, how much suds he uses. I am quite certain we have better things to fight about rather than suds and glass placement and whether he purposely puts unwashed glasses in the rack. erghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

We like to go to bed at the same time - however I like to read, and mark is allergic to books. So I prop myself up on my side with my book and he (stupidly) brings his laptop in so he can watch ninja movies on his side.. i dont think there is anything more annoying that the sound of a laptop whirring away when you are trying to read in silence. Then after I caste some dirty looks to his side of the bed he gets up and sits in the dark in the loungeroom to watch his ninja movie - which is just gay and pisses me off. I'm sure he does this on purpose.

Movie Rentals: we are both hardcore movie buffs, and i would have to say that my taste in movies is much better than his, he is the Brett Ratner of the group and I am the Todd Solondz. What makes me want to kick teeth in, is when I rent my excellent movie for us to watch and he downloads gay ninja movies to watch "just in case" the movie I chose is shit. Which really implies that he doesn't trust my choice in films - which is really unjust because he ends up loving them in the end.

Lenny: when mark says he would rather go to Berlin and buy some leather pants and go to some S&M clubs than send Lenny over. I think that should be grounds for divorce.

Actually most of these things look to be my problem.. I still think he has a manriod though.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Lenny Gaga

Let's Have Some Fun, This Catfood's Sic. I Wanna Take A Sniff Of Your Litter-Stick.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

BFF Far-ness

Damn you Globe!!!!!!!!!!!!

Last night I got home and was welcomed at the door by a care package. Care packages rock it. Inside I found: Cherry Ripes (yessssssssssssssss) Cat Toys (for cloning with Lenny's DNA) and Gumption (for cleaning bathroom soap scum, I know what i'm doin this weekend!!)

Only a BFF understands the need to have chocolatey treats and bathroom cleaner shipped around the other side of the world...

AND! comes up with these hilarities whilst she hosts Lenny on his 6 month Endless Summer Sabbatical.

Haaaaaaaaaaa too funny. I have tears streaming from this one.

Doin the Haggis Haggis Hop.. Ayyyy tis McLenny...........

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Excuse Me, Your Highness

One of good things about being a renter - when something breaks you call the landlord and they pay to fix everything. Since moving to our apartment I think we have called our landlord about.......... 150 times... my belief is that the previous tennant liked to swing around from the curtains, crank the central heating, slam drawers, and jump and down on the shelving units. Which would explain why everything broke within our first month.. it was like living in Chevy Chase' the Funny Farm.

But still no matter what ridiculous thing was broken now, our landlord always organised someone to come over and fix it, so it really doesn't grate on you that much because it's not like I am the one shelling out all this money for the broke shit.

I have in the past mentioned that my office has a smelly cupboard - this is where Satan dwells. Sometimes the smell is just a lingering stench, othertimes it's like the coming of the anti-christ. I'm not one to put up with the smell of poo for days on end, so I have been looking into getting to the crux of the problem fixed.

Our office is a heritage listed building - owned by the Crown's Estate - so basically at the end of the day, The Queen is my landlord.

Your Majesty,

I am writing in regards to our really smelly cupboard. I think we need a plumber sent out to look into this vent of evil-ness. I'm sure being The Queen, you can understand my situation. You must live in a world where a band of hired dwarfs hide in the small spaces with bunches of roses to scent the air to your delectable tastes. I on the other hand, am living in a world where I need a poisonous gas mask if I need to get a lever arch file out of the cupboard.

I'm pretty sure I read somewhere that being The Queen puts you in good standing with The Lord, so if you could maybe give him a shout and if in fact he hasn't heard of The Fallen One in a while - the smelly vent would be my first place to send a search team. Will I get a finders fee?

Anyway - please sort out the stench.

Your Humble Rent Payer

I expect she'll be showing up in a few days in overalls with a diamond encrusted plunger.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Lenny In Hats

Only 6 weeks till the King arrives.

be preparrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrred.

Monday, March 01, 2010


You know what has really revolutionised the world of travel: travel websites where anybody can write an 'unbiased' review of hotels. Whenever I book a trip, I trawl through tripadvisor/expedia, reading every review for a hotel i'm thinking of staying at and making a decision based on the general consensus of a place. Sometimes though, the reviews are just ludicrous. We had to carry our own bags./we had to walk up 3 flights of stairs/the curtains were outdated/the lampshades had a stain/the seagulls woke us up...OMG people. please just do everyone a favour and stay at home!!!!!!!!!! that way you can feel at ease with your 'funky' curtains and clean lampshades and deathly silent morning.

This weekend we went to Bath for a long weekend, and the hotel we stayed at was pretty great - right in the centre of town, view of the Abbey, soft comfy bed and blankets. Basically it had everything we wanted: comfort and safety... and a giant booger on the walls - but I don't care about that.

Nothing to complain about here.

I think the booger on the wall gave it character. next time I will specifically request the Booger-Suite. and there defo will be a next time because I am moving to Bath.
Bath.. is.. awesome.

It has a beautiful abbey, roman baths, statues of romans, plus it rains a lot so the city has a nice 'wetdown' look for pretending you are on a filmset. And there is a lot of learning to be had.

You can learn about naked roman people. You can eat a bath bun with strawberry jam at the oldest house in bath - dating back to the 1800's.. You can go to the thermal spa for a day and pruuuune up.

Our weekend panned out like so:

Friday: dinner at a french restaurant -snails yes!! unfortunately, no frogs legs...

Saturday: Roman Baths (learning) The Abbey (praying for the safe passage for the return of Lenny to us) Bath City (Georgian architecture) Art Gallery (with a sculpture of Rachel - the innocent lamb) eating our body weight in pizza and antipasto, NAPTIME (for logbuilding) then a night out at the Masonic Hall for some scary story telling at Bath's Literature Festival (FYI - it was fucking awesome!!!!!! if you ever have the opportunity to see someone do a dramatic reading of some ghost stories in a creepy old hall. do it!) Then some cocktails, a seafood antipasto and a baked Camembert. I am still full.

Sunday: total and complete prune up at the thermal spa. we booked 5 hours. we had two thermal spas and a steamroom to fill our time with, and boy did we fill it:

Downstairs Spa
Steamrooms (with lavender/mint/eucalyptus/frankinsence aromas to choose from)
Rooftop Spa
Return to the Steamrooms for a Steaming (footspas and lavender room)
Break for Lunch
Rooftop Spa
Steamroom for final steaming.

I was a prune and a half. I looked like this when I got out:
sooooooooooooooo warm and pruney.
i've come to think that wrinkles are just a sign of enjoying the great steamroom of life.
So, Bath.. i'm moving in...into a steamroom preferably.