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Monday, 26 May 2014

God isn't Jewish - at least not today...

Well what a random week that was!

Super busy in work as usual, back to hockey training and just recovered from the flu before I got sick again; left sniffing, coughing and sounding like a man (or a seal according to Anneke!). Was asked to double-up to Pennant A (3rds), so changed my plans and turned up; despite the fact that I felt like I was dying. Spent the entire 70 mins on the bench. I wasn't impressed.

After the game we head back to the pitch to watch the Premier League Reserves girls play their match. A friend of a friend is sitting at the sideline and is watching the team play for the first time. We're all screaming "Go HOUSE!" and "Come on HOUSE" at the team and at half-time she enquires as to which girl is called "House" as she seems to be very popular! It was probably rude to laugh as much as everyone did, as the poor girl thought the team was "St. Kilda" and not "Powerhouse St. Kilda" and so of course there was much confusion :)

Later, as I stood with Tilly's new dog "Alba" on the sidelines with Anne and Maire, a man appeared with his plastic bags. True to form and supporting the fact that all weirdos are attracted to me, he stops to chat. He proceeds to tell me about his ex-wife and her great-grandfather twice removed, about Members of Parliament that were Irish and asked if I knew Ned Kelly. It was on the tip of my tongue to tell him we were best mates.
Maire and Anne stifle the laughter as I'm left dealing with the weirdo and secretly hoping that Alba, the American Bulldog, would show some stereotypical traits and scare him off. Instead she laps up the attention and eats his crisps. Nice one Alba.
He persists in talking to me, rambling on about Tipperary (and yes, "It's a long way to Tipperary" was mentioned) and Tyrone, telling me who his relatives are and I curse our nation for being one that travels so much. Eventually I manage to steal myself away and stay round the side of the pitch, where he randomly shouts questions about the game at me: "How many players on a team?", "She's a big girl, isn't she?!" or "Do they play here every week?" to which I quickly reply "No...just the odd time" in the hope that he's not going to become our biggest PHSK fan.

We go to "Pint on Punt" ( who are our new sponsors for hockey and have some dinner and drinks there on Saturday night. Twenty of us turn up and get our membership cards and Maire makes use of hers straight away - her "I'm not drinking tonight" was quickly brushed aside when she went to the bar and came back with two double-vodkas! Not a late night for the rest of us though and by 11pm we were all done.

Went to see "X-Men: Days of Future Past" in the cinema at the weekend. I LOVE SCIFI!! I sometimes think I should have been a boy. Until my mouth starts watering at the sight of Wolverine with his top off and then I realise that I'm ok being Ciara again :) Great film and can't wait to see the next one!

After training on Wednesday night, Maire asks our coach for some tips on AFL and cricket coaching. She needs to teach her Muslim girls on it and has no idea on any drills or exercises for them to do for it the next day. She's asking about run-throughs and plays and what he thinks she should go through with them that will keep them entertained - something that's fun.
Then she says "Well, what about Fisting?".
Yes; you read right; "Fisting".
Jessie's mouth drops open, Gabby puts her hands over her face and I burst out laughing. "Wha", she says in her full-on Essex accent, "you know this thing"; and proceeds to make "Fisting-gestures" with her arm! We all start laughing and a comment is made that what she's asking about is more "Game of Thrones" than any other game she's thinking of.
Once we calmed down we explained that it was called a "Hand-ball" and not "Fisting".

Later on in the week JD, Tilly and I met up for a drink after work in The Union Hotel on Chapel. I tell the story about Maire and her "Fisting" mix-up, and so JD takes a photo of her fist and sends it to Maire asking how the Muslims liked her Fisting class. The response was an innocent one, but in the context of what we were talking about it was priceless.
Standard Maire.

Leaving the hotel to walk me to the cinema, JD is in fine-form and is rambling on in her Nordie accent about the names that she and her brother call each other. Not to be repeated on this forum anyway! She realises that she's left Tilly's beanie in the pub and Tilly sets off sprinting to the pub, after telling us to stay put as we'd only slow her down! She comes back empty-handed and so JD tries to tell her that it wasn't her fault and says that she's giving her "Doggy Breath Eyes" in an attempt to get out of being in trouble. She then pauses, clearly thinking that "Doggy Breath Eyes" doesn't sound right and there's something wrong with the phrase. Tilly and I start laughing our heads off at her and eventually she grasps the "Puppy Dog Eyes" from in amongst the foggy alcohol-blurred thoughts in her mind!

Round 5 of hockey ends with another win by my beautiful team of friends. 5-0 vs Hawthorn this time, and thanks to MCC beating Altona we're now top of the ladder by 2 points. We need to finish first this year to get promoted (we won the league last year but finished 2nd on the ladder, so couldn't get promoted), so that's the aim of the game. Pressure's on girls!!

I met Maire to support her in a social committee meeting and bunked the tram down Chapel to get there. I was sitting on one of the "priority seats" (to be offered up to people with disabilities, old people, pregnant women etc) with a guy beside me and there was a girl sitting on one of the four "priority seats" across from me. A young Jewish lady and her two kids got on the tram about half-way down Chapel, and she immediately went over to the girl sitting on her own, stood over her and said "Move!". I sat with my mouth open in shock at how rude this lady was being. There were 3 seats together for her and her children to sit on, and so there was no need for the other girl to move anywhere! The poor girl, who had her headphones in, got up and moved down the tram; while I sat there glaring at the woman, trying to burn my "you're lucky you said that to her and not me" look into her eyes after her recent display. What a disgusting attitude! Who did she think she was?! Next thing, I spot the ticket inspectors about to board at the next stop, so I promptly get up and exit; just in time to see them ask her for her ticket - which she didn't have. I smiled to myself thinking that there is a God, and he's not Jewish.
At least not today.

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

"Facies" and Umpire's asses...

Another week, but this one was extra-uneventful since I was sick for the whole of it. I got some sort of flu/virus and spent the whole week washed out and feeling like I was going to faint. Off work on Tuesday where I spent the whole day in bed watching "Game of Thrones" Season Two. Or "Game of TRONES" as some of my non-Irish friends like to make fun of me over. I say it with a "h"'s just silent to non-Irish people's ears.
Anyway, how great is that box-set? Love that sort of stuff - and I'm hating certain characters in it like Jeoffrey and his Mother. I think it's great how some actors can actually make you hate them; even though you know that it's a made up show! I mean, I actually spent time out of my own life thinking about how horrible and mean they were and how much I hated them?!

Work drinks Friday night to Katuk, where I could only manage one vodka before I could feel the pseudoephedrine warning me not to have any more. Went to the cinema after to see Godzilla, where I crapped myself at 99% of it. Man I'm such a scaredy-cat! Good film though! Next up is X-Men next week (SUPER-excited for this!) followed by Guardians of the Galaxy and Transformers. I'm such a Sci-Fi nerd! Plus, nobody realises how annoying 3D film glasses are when you already wear glasses. Not to mention how extra-dumb you must look wearing two pairs of glasses just to be able to watch the film :) Just as well that it's dark in there!

My budgeting, saving and generally having no life is starting to pay-off in the financial sense. I may have nothing to blog about, no longer know what it's like to drink or get dressed up to go out, but my debts are starting to get a bit more under control. I think I've personally written this year off when it comes to "living" really anyway in an effort to get my head and bank account straight; so trying to continue to stick to the plan...apart from my "Birthday-Week" OBVIOUSLY. And yes, I'm 31 and I have a "Birthday-Week".

Brekkie on Sunday is with Lara at La Roche on Acland St (yes, that is a Tim Tam Cheescake for "Brekkie"), where we get front row seats to an average day in St. Kilda. Homeless drunk man decides that he likes the look of some randomer's parked up motorbike and wants to have a go. He drags himself up onto it and "brum brums" along to the scene of "Easy Rider" he's obviously playing in his head while the passers-by look on in amazement. He twists the throttle, pushes all the buttons, moves the handlebars and then tries to take it off the stand, but is too weak. He then has enough and decides to dismount. He promptly falls off the motorbike, rolls along the pavement and immediately after gets sick beside his sleeping bag. All the while smiling.

Soon after the third or fourth time that he sits on the bike, the owner comes back and warns him to get off. Shortly after that a random dog-walker gets involved and pulls him from getting run over on the road by a tram and puts him on his sleeping bag and calls the police to come and pick him up. Two female police arrive and stand over him as he gets sick by their feet. The ambulance arrives but since he refuses to get on the gurney he is promptly arrested and shoved in the back of the police car/van. That's the end of the fun for us. Front row seats on Acland Street. All we were missing was the popcorn.

So, hockey game day comes and I'm still feeling too weak to play; but I go kitted up in case they need me, but am glad to be left to support this time. I watch my team play MCC at MCC and win 3-2. Four of us watch the game on a beautiful Autumn day. Lynnie returns to the team and scores and Chaz and Liz do too; Liz from a stroke. Great game, although I hate watching as I stress out too much!
After another great win I ask our coach Oke to take a photo of those of us who were waiting on the steps having a drink. The last time he tried to take a photo, he had to have a 6-year-old show him how to use an iPhone camera. This time he tells us he's learned and he's not stupid and what do we think he is. That sentence is closely followed by "Oh look, I can take a "Facies"". The explanation of the fact that it was called a "Selfie" and not a "Face-y" came after the laughter stopped!

Next game started, which looked like Werribee against some other team. Half-way through the umpire told us to keep it down; which left us all stunned to silence. Well; for about 20 seconds before we started shouting "We love you umpire" and other things. He turned and lifted his shirt and wiggled his a*s at us! Lara and I wolf-whistled as the rest cheered and screamed and we all laughed our heads off. Not exactly standard umpire behaviour and a funny way to end the evening.

No sooner had it happened when the girls turn to me and say "blog". It amazes me to think that people even know that I write a blog! When I get the odd comment from someone I don't really speak to all the time about how they read my blog, it feels funny to think that they know about my life and what I've been up to. It feels good to see that people are interested, or bored enough to read what I blab on about and yet I forget that when I'm writing this, it's going out to the world. So here's a shout out to Alan D, to Fiona L, Sarah O'D and Catherine G - all of whom I haven't spoken to in a while but who i know are reading this. To think that you're spending some of your precious free time reading about "Facies" and "Umpire's asses"...I don't know which one of us is worse?!

Monday, 12 May 2014

Who the f*ck is Eddie??!

So, we're up to Round 3 of hockey now and the antics have started along with the collection of bruises. Just as well hockey is a winter sport, cos my legs are consistently black and blue from April to Sept (Autumn/Winter in Australia)!!
Due to work being so busy and with training and hockey matches taking 3 of my days up, then I don't really have any time to let anything happen to me, so my blog is suffering! I don't even take the tram anymore, so the number of weirdos in my life is slowly decreasing!

I celebrated my promotion in work with Rainman and Maire by having breakfast in Maire's house before our match last weekend. I consumed 2 pancakes, a bowl of strawberries and half a jar of Nutella before we headed over to the pitch to warm up. 

Needless to say I was regretting my choice in breakfast 45 mins later as I was running around the pitch. We were playing Footscray who we beat in the Grand Final last year - so they were out for our blood. Thankfully we won 2-1; which lessened the pain of the freezing cold and lashing rain. I was just beginning to warm up when I was asked to play another game. Putting the soggy, cold playing top back on outside when it was pelting rain into the side of my face was less than encouraging, but a stroke of genius of putting my rain jacket on underneath my playing top (need to keep up with the "Butch" image and nickname) only lasted about 5 minutes into the game, when I soon found myself sweating so much I thought it was still raining when it wasn't! (Slight exaggeration here, but you get what I mean!)
Lots of fun playing that game and getting to try things out that I normally wouldn't.

Met up with Alex to celebrate his becoming an Aussie Citizen in Banff on Fitzroy St. Love how he chooses the smallest location around & then invites 20 of his mates to come celebrate! The rearranging of tables & getting others to move to accommodate us was like Musical Chairs! I'm sure, despite the amount of revenue we generated by having our numbers there, we probably ruined the chances of any of the other customers ever coming back!!

It's funny what you learn by being in other countries. I learnt that Dance music in a car here is called "Duff-Duff" music (cos of the noise it makes) and I realised that when Jack in worked said "Boo Bop" music, he meant Hip Hop. I learnt that Aussies are actually quite racist despite the number of different cultures and ethnicities over here; the largest Greek population outside of Athens is found in Melbourne! I learnt that any word can be abbreviated and then shortened again in Australia - "Avo" for avocado, "micro" for mircowave, "btw" for by the way, "tbh" for to be honest and "cbh" for couldn't be f...I'll leave that for you to finish. Aussies are quite lazy but have a good work-life balance (with the emphasis on the "life" rather than the "work" part) and more than 80% of Aussies live within 100km of the coast (which; you could probably say for Ireland too cos of the size of it!!). I learnt there's no such thing as "Drop-Bears" (and I think JD knows this now after Rainman, Maire and Tilly traumatised her over it; saying the 2 possums in the tree were "Drop-Bears"; just before one of them fell out of the tree as if to back-up their story!) or Bunyips, but there are plenty of other creatures that you can get nowhere else... how fortunate for the rest of you. Australia is very male-orientated and women don't get the same opportunities as men; even more so than at home, and being on a visa holds you even further back. I learnt that it's a lot harder to make friends with Aussies and they come across as though they don't need you and have enough friends. Asking an ex-Pat what their name is pretty much guarantees you an invite to their wedding, but Aussies take a lot longer to crack :) Aussies in the city are fun loving, drink & good-food loving, sporty, fit and spend a lot of time and money looking after themselves. Step outside the cities and it's like a completely different world; where obesity is rampant & many don't even wear shoes.
Melbourne is amazing; it has everything to offer and the rest. I have learnt to look outside the box, try different things, appreciate the opportunity and experience granted to me and to try and live as much as possible (even though money tends to restrict me on much of this!!) I learned that Australia is the 6th largest country in the world where vegetation actually covers 91% of it and getting a Permanent Residency visa here seems much easier if you board a boat and just land ashore. Apparently the first European settlers in Oz drank more alcohol per person than any other community in the history of mankind. I'm guessing this might be linked to the thousands of Irish convicts shipped over?? A previous Prime Minister of the country (Bob Hawke) was in the Guinness Book of Records for skulling 2.5 pints of beer in 11 seconds. Obviously a relation of the first settlers then...?!

So, as I go to bed at 5pm as I'm dying sick; there was an impromptu inspection on our apartment. Not that I was worried, cos I was grand and my room was clean, although I was in my PJs and let's just say I wasn't looking my most radiant. Asking if they could come into my room I said "of course"; only remembering the bed clothes when I had let them in. The look on the old lady's face was one of inquisition as the words on the pillows were processed in her head; quickly turning to shock as she stood with her mouth open and staring at me. I just smiled and shrugged my shoulders and got half-way through asking if there was anything else she wanted to see before she turned and ran out the door! At least I made a lasting impression?!

Something that made me laugh from hockey was when we were playing against Greensborough and were all very serious as we were only drawing 1-1 at this stage in the game. We have a lot of more experienced and very good players on our team and so everyone was trying to step up, bring their game face and impress. We were taking a "Short" (Penalty corner), when the "Pusher" Vicki gets us to gather round. Now Vicki is one of these players; experienced, serious on the pitch, a very good player and someone you want to get good feedback from. Sasha, Dash, Vicki, Rainman, Kenny, Jacquie and I all huddled together while she gave us the low-down on the Plan of Action. "So, it's going to Sasha. If there's not enough time to take a shot, pass it back to Eddie". We all listened intently and nodded, taking in the instructions while Vicki, Sasha, Kenny and Dash took their positions. Rainman, Jacquie and I were left staring blankly at each other before Rainman broke the silence by voicing out loud what the three of us were thinking, just as Vicki took the corner; "Who the f*ck is Eddie?!"

Sasha could barely contain herself as she had to explain to us dumb-asses that "Eddie" was code for "Vicki"; all as the opposition looked on in amusement.
Well I said we were a fun hockey team, not a smart one!!