Wednesday, April 26, 2006

I'm Not That Australian

Arrived back in Sydney yesterday morning, The Flattie made me a great breakfast, and we headed down to the local pub for drinks with a few others. Drinks on a Tuesday, you say? That's right, it was a national holiday. "Anzac Day", to be precise.

I'm still not clear on what was being honored here, since it's supposedly about the troops, but they already have a Veteran's Day. Either way, the apparent highlight of Anzac Day is that people play "two up" in the bars and bet money on it. Which turns out to be...heads or tails. Yeah, seriously. I was less than impressed, but at least it gave me an excuse to drink for a few hours.

Now it's Wednesday, my first day back at work, and I have a slight hangover to add to the jetlag. Adding to that, my mother is making an unexpected trip down to Sydney for a week and arrives this morning. Love the woman, but could have used a few days to prepare. Oh well.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Thank You, New York

So it's finally here, the day I fly back down to Sydney. My visit home was everything I hoped and dreamed it would be, and probably everything that civilized New Yorkers feared it would be. Some of the best things about the past week and a half:

THE WEATHER - It's like New York was trying to compete with Sydney for best weather ever. My entire trip here has been warm and sunny, with the exception of the last 24 hours. As Emla put it, it's simply New York crying because I'm leaving it all over again. Understandable.

THE FOOD - I wish I could explain how much NY pizza I've eaten in the past 11 days, but it would be mildly offensive. And it's not just the pizza. I'm pretty sure I will never visit a city in the world that has the sheer variety that New York offers. Just yesterday I was looking up a location for dinner, and the East Village alone had over 1000 places to eat, including several Tibetan, Afghan, and god knows what else venues. (In the end we went with an old favorite, Les Enfant Terribles -- French food with West African spices, spectacular.) Not to mention the $15 bruch special that includes great food and 3 brunch drinks, that a few of us will probably be doing again today. My mouth is watering already. For the booze, that is.

THE PEOPLE - Although being away from New York seems to have made me a little soft (I thought the people on the train were "a little too ghetto" my first couple of days back), you'd have to be a truly sheltered soul to not be able to appreciate the diversity in this city. It's because you can get on the A train and have a Wall Street millionaire sitting next to a guy who has been unemployed for 3 years that we have such ridiculous encounters every day, as chronicled in various places like Overheard In New York. To paraphrase that fake graduation speech from years ago, staying in New York might make you hard, but being somewhere that's a little too "nice" will definitely make you soft. And I'd much rather be kind of an asshole than a doormat, so expect me back sometime soon.

MY FRIENDS - All I can say is that I sincerely doubt there is a group of people I will ever meet that has as much fun as my friends here, to the point that part of me will have to keep wondering why I would choose to spend months away from them at a time. If only I could take you all with me, but then I'm not sure Australia would tolerate such massive amounts of assholery within their borders.

Anyway this is almost bordering on sentimental, so let me stop right there and simply pledge to get some kind of a photo album together for this trip, with maybe even one or two pictures where underwear isn't visible or someone's leg isn't around my neck. Could be tough.

Friday, April 21, 2006

God I Love Stories Like This

So on Wednesday, a bunch of us got together for a nice lunch at one of my favorite french bistros. The crew included Emla, Joe the Circus Chimp, Lojo, Belle, Cathy (of Team America fame in Sydney) and myself. We had our usual silly time, laughing and accidentally elbowing people at neighboring tables in the neck (or was that just me?) and all that, and somehow it took Cathy like two hours to tell us one of the best drunk idiot stories I've heard in a while.

Apparently she was in her friend's livingroom after a late night, and they were getting the sofabed set up for for the night, when the roommate's girlfriend staggered out of the other bedroom completely naked, and drunk out of her MIND. She was heading for the bathroom, but upon seeing Cathy and her friend in the livingroom suddenly stopped, covered herself with her hands and went back into the bedroom.

So okay, this is a bit embarrassing and maybe it could happen to anyone. But wait, it gets better. She comes back out of the bedroom after putting something on. And by 'something' I mean a pair of 4-inch gold heels. And nothing else. She then proceeded to walk to the kitchen, because she was lost trying to get to the bathroom. She eventually made it there, and when finished she made it back to the correct bedroom, leaving the heels in the bathroom.

And of course she woke up in the morning and remembered nothing. Made all the more hilarious by comments like "I just can't walk in heels." Oh yes you can, just have a few more drinks babe.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Sing Me A Song

Okay, while I have a minute I should really take some time to recap karaoke night on Tuesday. I unfortunately don't have pictures yet (as awesome as they are) but I can always post those later. Anyway, here was the program for my first karaoke night since August:

The Yin Yang Twins - "Wait (The Whisper Song)", performed by Zander and Emla

Not a clue how I let Emla talk me into this. It's clearly the most offensive song ever to hit #1 on the rap charts. What's even better is that I was off to a great start until I hit the second verse and realized just how vile the lyrics really are. Alas, I started laughing and was only able to sing the chorus for the remainder of the song. That would be repeating "beat the p***y up" over and over again, for those not familiar with this piece of trash. Way to set the tone for the evening.

Bill Withers - "Ain't No Sunshine", performed by my brother and Colin

This was the first of two songs dedicated to me (or rather, my absence) and I actually can't make too much fun because it was well done by these two karaoke kings.

New Kids On The Block - "Step By Step", performed by Zander and Jaya

I enlisted Jaya to sing this one with me because the last time I tried a year ago, she gave me shit about messing it up for weeks. Yeah, didn't go that much better this time. STEP ONE. Pick a song I actually know. Oh well.

U2 - "With Or Without You", performed by JoBo

Oh sweet jesus. The second song dedicated to me having the gall to live anywhere but New York, performed with mock earnestness by everyone's favorite reformed Jersey-ite. It may have remained within the limits of entertaining and amusing had he not ended the song yelling "AUSTRALIA SUCKS", "WHAT THE FUCK IS A WALLABY??" and "WHO THE HELL DRINKS FOSTERS ANYWAY???" repeatedly, which definitely ventured into the territory we define as absolutely fucking hilarious. Yet another song I will never be able to listen to again without picturing this man and laughing.

Journey - "Separate Ways", performed by Miss Jessica

Miss Jessica made a late appearance in the evening, and then more than made up for it by performing her signature karaoke song and as usual eliciting a standing ovation. Rock on.

Lindsay Lohan - "Rumors", performed by Emla and Zander

This was performed purely in honor of CStixx, who was unable to join us that night. Okay who am I kidding, we love this song. Too bad everyone else just stared at us because they had NO idea what it was. Doesn't mean Emla and I didn't get down to it though. The advantages of performing songs no one else knows is that they don't know how bad you are. Which reminds me that we also performed one by Kelly Osbourne. I bet those are off the list next time we stop in there...

Destiny's Child - "Bugaboo", performed by Joe the Circus Chimp

Joe, you are an idiot. Seriously, what were you thinking? You knew the words to EVERY OTHER SONG that people sang that night, and then you go and pick this random crap and completely mess it up. You spent about one minute at the end of the song shrieking about the lyrics on the screen being retarded. Believe me, something in that bar was retarded and it wasn't electronic. You moron.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006


And of course I wake up the morning of the big karaoke night with NO VOICE WHATSOEVER. I should probably thank Colin and Adrian for dragging me to 4 bars and a diner last night, apparently that's their definition of "takin' it easy".

Monday, April 17, 2006

It Hurts.

Okay so I wanted to at least attempt to recap the past few days being back home in NYC, even though it's been a total drunken mess and I barely remember them.

Thursday was the day of the wedding, so I headed over to my brother's place in Queens first to meet up with him, his girlfriend and Emla to go to the wedding together. Showed up at the Soho Grand and immediately started knocking them back -- with a little help from the ceremony itself, where we all toasted to the bride and groom with champagne before they were allowed to kiss. Shocked the two British girls sitting at our table during the reception, and danced like morons with my three dates to every song that came on until it was time for me to head to a couple more bars. I think I got home around 5am but not quite sure...

On Friday I believe I managed to refrain from any hard drinking until happy hour, which left my sides hurting from laughing so hard within the first 30 minutes of everyone getting there. Joe was hilariously inappropriate, and once again left us wondering how he has yet to be stabbed by anyone on the street. Especially the people he touches even though he doesn't know them. Or maybe the random depressed looking dude to whom Joe yelled "It's okay, your father can't hurt you anymore!"

Woke up on Saturday feeling like death itself, but still managed to have a few glasses of wine at a family brunch at Aquagrill. Attempted to take a nap in the afternoon and then headed to dinner and then drinks, and then...more dancing like assholes, this time at Hudson Hotel Bar.

Sunday was hysterical -- met up with a few others on the Lower East Side for the best brunch deal anyone has ever heard of (awesome food, and 3 complimentary brunch drinks for FIFTEEN DOLLARS) where there was even a cameo appearance by Crispin Glover (random C-list actor, we think he was in a movie about rats and maybe in Back To The Future but we're not sure) who was looking mighty gay and holding a tiny dog. The highlight may easily have been JB telling us his latest random idea for how to screw up a child's life FOREVER. We love those.

So last night, feeling like a shell of a human being, I stayed in and watched TV while shoveling copious amounts of NY pizza into my face. Time well spent, I'd say. And now it's time to be drunk for the next 3 days. Pardon me.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Oh Sweet Jesus

This trip is turning out to be everything I feared it would be. As in, way too awesome. I've been back for 3 days, any moments of sobriety have been few and far between, and I've managed to spend well over $1000 with less than a third of my trip out of the way. Which might not be so terrible if I wasn't being paid in Monopoly money back down under.

Ah well. Off to a boozy brunch, maybe I can manage a real blog post tomorrow.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

"Act Like An Asshole Pills", Now Available

Quick story for you. Was on the plane yesterday when there was all this commotion near us at the back of the cabin. Turned around to see this guy being held down by about 5 of the plane crew. He was struggling and kind of slurring his speech, so I spent a little time trying to figure out if he was retarded or really drunk, eventually deciding there wasn't enough of a difference between the two to really care.

Anyway, he was eventually led to the front of the plane in plastic handcuffs, looking totally out of it, and we had to wonder what the hell was going on.

So once we were off, we ran into some friends at the baggage claim in LAX, and asked them if they'd seen what happened. Turns out this idiot took Ambien or something when he got on the plane and clearly it didn't completely work. You would think with all the reports of people sleep eating, sleep driving, and even one woman claiming she murdered her husband while on the things, people would know better than to take one before being in a confined public space for 13 hours??

Best part is that he remembered NOTHING when he woke up wearing the handcuffs. I guess if you're going to totally humiliate yourself in front of hundreds of strangers it's better not to remember the whole ordeal.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Have The Authorities Been Alerted?

So this is it, I'm off to the airport any moment now for the 20 hour journey back to the greatest city in the world. There will be drunkeness, there will be hilarity, and if I can find the time or clarity of mind, there will also be pictures and blog posts.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006


Not a real post, just some more quiz results cause I'm addicted to Blogthings at the moment:

What Temperament Are You?

You Have a Sanguine Temperament

You are an optimistic person who is easily content. You enjoy casual, light tasks - never wanting to delve too deep into anything. A bit fickle, it's easy for you to change plans or paths when presented with something better.

You enjoy all of the great things life has to offer - food, friends, and fun. A great talker, you can keep the conversation going for hours. You are optimistic and sure of your success. If you fail, you don't worry about it too much.

At your worst, you are vain. You are obsessed with your own attractiveness. A horrible flirt, you tend to jump into love affairs and relationship drama easily. You're very jealous - which just magnifies the craziness around you.

What European City Do You Belong In?
You Belong In Milan

Stylish and sophisticated, you want to enjoy a truly European life - away from tourists! Milan fits you perfectly. Great shopping, high quality food, lots of culture... with very little hype.

What Will Your Famous Last Words Be?
Your Famous Last Words Will Be:

"I dunno, press the button and find out."

What Kind Of Drunk Are You?

You're A Wild Drunk

You can't get enough drink. Seriously, you'll just go puke and start pounding them back again!

Monday, April 10, 2006

Keepin' It Gangsta

So Saturday night was the long awaited Snoop Dogg concert, OR the Annual Wigger Convention, whichever you'd like to call it.

Unfortunately I didn't take my camera with me -- I'd hate to generalize at all, but basically all Snoop Dogg fans other than me and my friends are clearly a bunch of lawless thugs, and someone would have stolen my camera if I'd taken it with me.

Anyway, the concert was awesome, even though he came on almost 3 hours after the supposed start time. As I had to explain to my cousin, her coworker and his friends, black people are never on time for ANYTHING, even if they're getting paid hundreds of thousands of dollars for it.

I'd thought that "Drop It Like It's Hot" was going to be the highlight of the show, but it ended up being "Gin n Juice". Me favoring the song that has a type of liquor in the title, go figure.

Wish I had some wacky drinking stories, but other than a few drinks in the bar at the venue (where a massive fight broke out, including chairs flying through the air, thanks for that folks) I actually took it easy that night.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

The Flattie and I had Team America over for lunch on Sunday, which was headed the way of last Sunday before I stopped drinking the wine and went to see V for Vendetta instead of damaging my liver any further. That movie is AWESOME, in case anyone was wondering.

So yes, a pretty quiet weekend for once. But really it's the calm before the storm when you consider I'm about to be drunk in NYC for 2 weeks. Booyakasha.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Is It Time To Admit I Have A Problem?

So yeah, figured I should take a few minutes out of my Saturday afternoon to blog about Thursday night. Now let me say that I was pretty sure it wasn't really just going to be a quiet birthday dinner for friends or anything, but I will say that I didn't expect to show up to work drunk for the second time in a week.

All I knew about the restaurant going in is that it was called "Yipiyiyo", which with the pronunciation in my head, I kind of thought was going to be some quaint little Japanese place. Turned out it's pronounced "Yipi-YAYE-o" (sorry I don't think that actually helped, but hopefully someone got it) and I knew I was in trouble when a drag queen came down the stairs and started singing Dusty Springfield songs. Technically I should have known I was in trouble when I finished my own bottle of wine in the first 60 minutes and started drinking everyone elses, but what can I say, I'm a slow learner.

Of course afterwards we headed off to a bar, where it never occurred to me that slamming down a beer every 10 minutes might end in me acting like a complete and utter jerk. Nonetheless, I woke up the next morning trashed yet again and genuinely wondering why anyone invites me to anything. Seriously, how do I have friends?

Fortunately my company directors forgot I was supposed to have my formal review on Friday, although they did call me out for being drunk/hungover at work again. In the U.S. it would be grounds for dismissal, but here in OZ it pretty much means you're due for a raise. Someone's gotta pay for the fuckin' beer...

Now if you'll all excuse me, I need to get ready for the Snoop Dogg concert. Hawt.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Unfashionable? Yes. Horror-Inducing? Not So Much.

Okay, so this is the last post inspired from this past weekend, but I had to bring it up because I thought it was so odd.

Now we all know people have irrational fears. A fear of heights is relatively understandable, and even my silly fear of cockroaches is pretty common (they're ridiculously ugly AND they crawl around, it just makes sense that they're pure evil). I would even understand a fear of obese people, cause god knows when they might get hungry enough to eat YOU.

But sometimes certain fears cross that line. I have a friend back in NY who is afraid of mannequins. Pretty strange considering you can't walk down a street in Manhattan without seeing one, but fine -- I mean, they kinda look like people, but they're not, and maybe that movie Mannequin back in the 80's scarred more people than we may ever realize.

However this weekend I found out that someone I know here in Sydney has a fear of...wait for it...corduroy. No, I'm serious. And not just "oh, corduroy is tacky, I would never wear it", I mean that if someone wearing corduroy were to walk up to him and try to give him a hug he would fling himself into moving traffic before allowing that person's jacket to make contact with him. If it gets too close, the thought of it touching him makes him want to vomit. I saw all of this in action on Saturday night, since we all thought it was hilarious and decided that chasing him around with corduroy was a good time. He even almost dropped an entire case of beer to get away from the big bad corduroy jacket. Do you have any idea how serious this has to be to get an AUSTRALIAN to drop a case of beer?

So yes -- that one definitely crosses my line of stupidity. It's a piece of fabric. Sure it's not really in fashion right now, but acting like you'd be willing to throw yourself off a high-rise before letting it touch you is a bit much, I think.

And would LOVE to hear if you guys know about people with weird fears, cause I find this stuff hysterical.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

"Speaking of tripods..."

So one thing that happened this weekend was meeting the people who live directly across from my livingroom, bathroom and kitchen windows. To give you the backstory so that makes just a teeny bit of sense...

A few months ago, Cath (of Team America) was over, and a few days later she went into work and her boss told her that she had seen Cath IN OUR APARTMENT, because it turns out they are the people whose side apartment windows face ours.

That essentially made things a little weird -- it's one thing to think that you might pass these people in the neighbourhood or something like that, but to basically know each other means that you have to wonder what exactly they can see. But we just moved on, mostly ignoring this fact -- unless I happened to be drunk and yelled through the window to them, but that's to be expected, really.

So Saturday I went to birthday drinks for Cath's coworker, and who else was there but my neighbours. Of course I'd been drinking for about 6 hours already, so I immediately told everyone in the vicinity that they were my "peeping toms" and I was planning to file charges.

They played along, with the husband even joking that they had a tripod set up in the livingroom so they could have more material for their website about me.

At which point I said as loudly as possible "Speaking of tripods, I hear you can see me take showers!"

You have never seen such a quick combination of nervous laugh + stutter + look for an escape route. It was classic. It was around this time that Cath reminded me that I can be "a bit much" for some people, particularly while inebriated. I just think it means everyone else needs to drink more.

Anyway it's Wednesday morning now, and we've gone back to pretending to never have met each other. Which is cool cause I was worried that now I would have to wave hello to them every time I saw her sitting her fat ass on the couch, or him ironing in the kitchen without a shirt on, which could have been a bit awkward. Especially if I happened to be making one of my naked mad dashes through the apartment from the bathroom to my room because I forgot my towel...

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Right On The Nose

Conversation Monday, with my boss, DURING the company management meeting where he caught me spacing out (because I was basically drunk):

Boss: Hellooooo. You with us?
Zander: Oh yeah, sorry. Just feeling a little under the weather. *Cough* I think there's something going around.
Boss: Um yeah, it's called alcohol.

Whether he thought I was actually drunk or just hungover, I didn't want to know. But it's kind of heart-warming that he knows me so well already.

Monday, April 03, 2006

"Zander doesn't throw up when he drinks too much. Zander throws DOWN!"

Wow. That's all I can really say after this past weekend. Actually that's not true, I have a LOT to say about this weekend. Not to mention the fact that it's Monday morning, I'm typing this at work, and I am still TRASHED. Here's how this all happened…


Managed to forego beer o'clock for once, but I'd still started pounding down the beers by 6pm. Met up with The Flattie and crew for a couple of hours, as they were getting started on their 'Blood On The Dancefloor II' theme night (don't ask). Unfortunately I had to pass on that carnage to head to a 'Super Hero' party with my cousin and her friends. Despite my lame-ass 'costume' (a superman t-shirt underneath my regular clothes – Clark Kent!), there were appearances by Wonder Woman, Zorro, Catwoman, two Lara Crofts, that chick from the Matrix, Luke Skywalker, and even Duff Man.

Of course I had to head off after a couple of hours to ANOTHER costume party, where the theme was the 1930's. Now maybe I'm confused, but wasn't that the Great Depression or something? Wooo! Nothing like poverty to get a party started. Anyway it's around there that my memory starts to escape me, but I'm pretty sure I was awesome and hilarious for hours after that.


This is where it starts to get ugly. Woke up feeling fine, mostly because I was still half in the bag. Tried to sleep it off a bit, but by 3pm I was being dragged to a bar already (against my will, I assure you) and by the time I got to birthday drinks at 8pm I was having trouble seeing straight. Even better that I showed up to these drinks late because "I would have been here earlier but JEM came on TV!" It's hearing words like that out of a grown man's mouth that make people cry. Ah well.

Anyway, kept drinking, told some new racist jokes, made some new friends, and then finally headed to a party I was supposed to stop by at 6pm. Better 5 hours late than never, I always say. Unless of course I show up empty-handed, drink their wine, and then pass out upstairs until I'm woken up at 3am and told to go home. Oops.


Once again, woke up STILL DRUNK (gotta represent the blog, you know how it is), blew off lunch plans to try and sleep it off, and then finally agreed to meet up with Scooter for a game of pool. Naturally this led to a bunch of us at Audrey and Dom's place having an impromptu euro dance party while finishing off a bottle of vodka into the wee hours of the morning. In between that we were at the Coogee Bay Hotel, where we were so loud and obnoxious that security came over and told us to 'calm down'. To put this in perspective for those of you who aren't familiar with the CBH, it's constantly full of drunk Irish sports fans, and they told US to calm down.

And so…it's Monday at 10am, and I am sitting in my office wondering why the hell I came into work when I am clearly having trouble walking straight (I've bumped into two walls already) and thanking god I'm in Australia and not a real country where they would care about these things.