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Another Awesome Weekend - Suffering From Elation
A Survivor's Tale
Another Awesome Weekend
OK, so the number of entries in my journal beginning with "Awesome Weekend" are growing beyond reasonable proportion, but I'd be lying if I said my weekend WASN'T awesome. It was!

Brace yourself for some capitalist-pig-esque product namedropping.

Friday night I went into the city with JB and we bought our Secret Santa presents for work - the first two books of the 'Twilight' series, because we're bastards like that. Also, we heard that Wang and Rosa did their Secret Santa shopping in a sex shop, and Mark got 'High School Musical', so they were hard acts to follow. Also, you'll notice the entire Art Department is no good at keeping secrets.

JB headed off to do some Christmas shopping of his own. I perched in a cafe for a while and did some reading and writing, then bought the first four decks of 'Killer Bunnies' cards for Joe's and my Christmas present to each other (we decided a PS3 was a bit excessive, as we don't actually play games all that often). Afterwards I caught up with bleupencil over coffee, and Joe dropped into Rose's place after work and picked up my new DSLR. Shiny!

That night, I'd barely turned out the lights when I was ATTACKED in the FACE by a BUG. This bug had supernaturally long antennae and I'd have considered it kind of cute if I wasn't flailing in horror. When the bug settled down on an envelope, I carred him out to the kitchen with the intent of trapping him under a glass. I lowered the glass toward him. Closer, closer... then the bug drew in a deep breath, SCREAMED at me, and leapt up onto the window.

I screamed back and ran away, fetching up in the bedroom to find Joe laughing at me.

Attempt number two to catch the Screaming Bug went a lot better. I used a very large glass container with a cork lid and got the little fella secured inside so I could take a good look at him. His long antennae were amazing. Joe poked him a little and only got a few hisses in return; never again did we hear the loud, "WWWRRYYYY!!" he'd shouted at me in the kitchen. (In fact, I'm still not entirely sure that Joe believes it actually happened.)

I dubbed the bug 'Gerald' and we took him to Hammond's the next morning as a gift, though we made Hammond promise to set him free somewhere that WASN'T a Golden Orb Weaver web. Some research on Hammond's laptop revealed that Gerald was a Fig Longicorn Beetle (Photos and info here: http://www.brisbaneinsects.com/brisbane_longicorns/FigLongicorn.htm ) and that the Chinese refer to this species as 'Sky Cows'. We were delighted.

That morning heralded our eagerly-awaited Wii-kend with hammond and Damo. We made delicious smoothies (Susan's right; we're mad not to have a blender at home), played a few rounds of Brawl and checked out a couple of other games. I admit, I am... intrigued... by the new 'Animal Crossing'. This new gaming-related emotion confuses me.

I gave Hammond lots of hugs as always, as I've not seen him so much lately and I miss him a lot. Same Damo - we hadn't seen one another in so long that we were both shocked at the amount each others' hair had grown! Longer hair suits Damo, he's a giant hottie. :D We went to the supermarket for supplies and Hammond found a $15 fiber-optic Christmas tree, which he proudly set up with decorations pilfered from the previous tenants.

That evening, Joey and I went to my work's Christmas party. It was at one of those restaurants where the food is served as a tiny portion in the centre of a giant plate, but it was delicious and everything was free (including the drinks) so we filled up on alcohol, naturally. This ended with Rosa sitting on my lap... naturally. Everyone got quite happy except for the various designated drivers, and around ten-thirty someone declared, "TO MARK AND ROSA'S!!" and most of the Art Department bundled into two cars for the journey. I had to half-carry Rosa to ours after Mark saved her from falling through a plate-glass door, and then it took some effort to convince her that she would much rather ride in the backseat than on my lap. She is an extremely happy drunk.

The journey turned into a mission to find apple schnapps, as my work-friends and I all have very happy memories of drinking the Black Forest Cafe dry of their supply during our Christmas In July party earlier this year. Schnapps were located, we arrived at Mark and Rosa's place, and we fired up the karaoke. Oh, baaaad idea. Those of us drunk enough to sing were so drunk that holding a tune eluded us. Someone put on 'The Lion Sleeps Tonight' and hilarity ensued.

After hours of fun and revelry (and a midnight muffin-bake-up, which all parties should have!), people began to trickle home. Pat, Joe and I left last, Joey with his camera full of amusing and incriminating photos, which are now on the server here at work.

I woke up the next morning with a monster headache (I blame the transition from vodka at the restaurant to schnapps at Rosa's) and an hour later when the painkillers finally set in, Joe and I worked our way up to heading to the shopping centre, where we ate and chilled out in the library. Oh! I forgot to mention it, but I rejoined the library this week after seven years in exile after an incident with unpaid fines back in 2001. (I was young and foolish.) I am SO happy to be a library member again! It was like coming home! Sadly, Joe is still in exile after a similar incident in 2005.

We also looked around for a present for hammond. Aside from he and Adders, my Christmas shopping is finito, but when I was over at Hammond's he told me what he's trying to arrange as my Christmas present, and it's fucking amazing and thoughtful and personal and now I am stuck on how to match this with my gift to him. OH GOD THE PRESSURE.

I couldn't find my phone all day Sunday, but I was SURE it had to be somewhere in the house, as I clearly remembered drunkenly arriving home at 2.30am on Saturday morning, dropping it in the gutter, and then picking it up again. Well, it seems that this incident was no barrier to me dropping it again five seconds later and not noticing. Happily, when we got home on Sunday afternoon, Richard had it safe in his hands - a passing stranger had seen it lying in the grass outside our house, looked at the wallpaper of Jangles on the screen, come up to the house, looked at Jangles, and confirmed that they'd found the phone's home. Unfortunately, before Helpful Stranger found my phone, a nest of ants had done so too, and there were three living inside it. Some banging and shaking cleared the ants out. Richard looked at them, frowned, looked closer and decided that they looked awfully like FIRE ANTS, and that we should probably photograph and report them.

Sadly, it seems that the $500 reward scheme for identification of fire ants ended midway through the year, but eliminating a nest of the little bastards will be its own reward. We won't know for sure if they ARE fire ants until we hear back from the council. I will keep you posted, LJ-land.

This brings us to this morning when, still tired from Saturday night's revelry, I went out to get a coffee and discovered ALL the Taringa cafes closed for the Christmas break. Woe!

We're due to have dinner with dad tonight, so I've got my laptop with me and will be heading into the City after work for more writing. Am thinking if I don't start my novel soon, I'll just keep planning and planning forever, because planning is fun and easy and you can't exactly FAIL at it. So I've told myself to man the fuck up, and should begin typing up the first chapter (which won't be THE first chapter - I know how easy it is to get stuck trying to write the Perfect Opening, so I'm writing it out of order and leaving that part 'til last) this evening while I wait to meet Dad.

Two days until Christmas Eve and I still haven't decided who I want to visit when over Christmas. Le sigh. I think it's going to end with me going to Joe's parents after all, and just manning up and dealing with being stuck on trains for most of Christmas Day. It'll be nice to visit everyone - who cares about the train? I can take the laptop and use the time productively anyhow.

Just in case I don't write again before Christmas (ha! Unlikely) have a great one, guys. :)
7 have fought ~ fight the power!
justascream From: justascream Date: December 22nd, 2008 07:37 am (UTC) (Link)
D: Fire ants have reached Aussie land now? UGH. SEARCH AND DESTROY.

I have a funny story somewhere backdated in my LJ of one of my adventures with fire ants. It had a picture of one in it. They are eensy teensy bastards of doom.
justascream From: justascream Date: December 22nd, 2008 07:44 am (UTC) (Link)
singingnettle From: singingnettle Date: December 22nd, 2008 10:42 am (UTC) (Link)
Screaming beetles! I love it.

There is a very large beetle we very occasionally see around here that squeaks...a six-lined something. It boggles me.
scoutlostthewar From: scoutlostthewar Date: December 23rd, 2008 03:26 am (UTC) (Link)
Ummm, how did that go joining the library? I had some rather nasty skirmishes with them back in 2002ish is it safe to return?
tania From: tania Date: December 23rd, 2008 03:35 am (UTC) (Link)
Ah, another member of our proud club. I joined without a prob - they never mentioned my past wrongdoings (circa 2001). Joe's were more recent, around 2005, so he had some problems and ultimately was not allowed to rejoin. I would advise giving it a shot - the payoff is soooo sweet - but with caution, as they still have a record of Joe's fines on the system and now they know where he lives. ;P
c_eagle From: c_eagle Date: December 23rd, 2008 08:12 am (UTC) (Link)
I love readin' about that Fun and Revelry!
Have a great XMAS!
sigmoidal_suseq From: sigmoidal_suseq Date: December 23rd, 2008 09:25 am (UTC) (Link)
HA! I do declare you domesticated.

Single reason for having a wedding - kitchen appliances.
7 have fought ~ fight the power!