Monday, April 30, 2007

Awesome, Can I Be #301?

I feel like I have a ton of pointless things I want to blog about from the weekend, so I figured that this time, instead of blogging about them all at once and boring you to tears, I would break it up into more edible pieces. (Damn I shouldn't have used the word "edible", now I totally want cake)

Anyway, after leaving work on Saturday, I met up with a few others for some of "the best Indian food in Sydney", and then we headed to the IMAX theater to finally see 300.

I've been dying to see this movie since the first time I saw a preview, and I've heard almost only good things about it from anyone who's seen it. Actually, the only people who had anything majorly negative to say about it were my two genius friends who for some reason decided it would be a bright idea to watch it -- a movie that is based on a graphic novel and centers around amazing cinematography -- on their laptops. Naturally anyone else who heard about this was completely appalled and stupefied by this, and I likened it to watching porn with your mother -- completely inappropriate, and defeats the purpose of doing it in the first place. (That's right kids, my awful metaphors are alive and well!)

Anyway, there was no way I wouldn't love this movie. It already sounded promising when a friend told me she thought it was cool but there was "too much fighting". Basically it's 2 hours of people bleeding, having limbs chopped off, and swords jammed into their torso, and it was BRILLIANT. And anything that resembles a comic book come to life is going to rate highly with me.

I suppose the only bad thing about it is that I was so amped up by the time I walked out of the theater that I felt like beating the crap out of everyone around me. It's just a good thing I restrained myself, considering that most teenaged girls could probably give me a good lashing and walk away unscathed.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

This Is Why I'm Hot

So it's a Saturday morning and I'm at work again. However, unlike all of the other weekends and public holidays I've had to work over the past couple of months, this one is my fault. On Thursday, after finally launching our huge marketing campaign that has taken over my life lately, my brain just kind of shut down from exhaustion. I had other work to do and I managed, however yesterday afternoon I found myself just sitting here and staring at my unfinished business proposal. I eventually just gave up and figured it would make more sense to come in for a couple of hours today to get it done, and that my Friday afternoon would be better spent watching the episode of Heroes that I missed earlier in the week.

As much as I love my work, I wouldn't do this year-round. Fortunately in terms of timing, reviews are coming up in May so hopefully all of this work will just make me look like the committed and diligent employee that I'm not.

I've always found it funny how so many people dread the review process. I mean let's summarize the situation -- someone has to sit there and listen to me talk about how awesome I am for a good half hour? That's pretty much my version of heaven, thanks. (I think there's also some part after that where your reviewer gives you "feedback" and "constructive criticism", but I generally miss that part because I'm still thinking about how great I am)

Anyway, all I can hope is that this little burst of productivity will be rewarded when raises and bonuses are announced at the end of June. In the meantime, I think it's time to chill out and enjoy the fact that for the first time in over 6 months, I have no big trips planned, and work should be relatively normal. More likely, I will get restless in a week and plan my next adventure, but I can pretend I enjoy stability for a few days.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

With Your Help...

Somehow, I almost forgot this brilliant text message from last weekend. Made even better by the fact that Juice got it from his mother, of all people:
World Vision needs your help. Mongo is an 8-year old boy in Africa who has to walk 12 kilometers a day to get water. For only $1 a day, we can buy a whip and make the lazy little fucker RUN.

Pure evil genius and I'm still laughing about it. All in the spirit of humor, though. Much love to Mongo and family.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007


So I think I mentioned a little while back that I intended to start swimming laps in the mornings. And believe it or not, I've actually been doing that almost every day for the past two and a half weeks. It's meant to combat my impeding slide towards the big THREE-O, as I figure I'd better get in some kind of shape now if I don't want to look like crap in a few years.

I love swimming so getting myself to the pool every morning hasn't been too hard. And of course there are the little things, both positive and negative, that I've had to deal with. For example, my allergies seem to have stopped bothering me so much now that I'm getting fit. On the other hand, I carry a faint smell of chlorine around with me for at least a few hours every morning. (And before even one more person asks me this stupid question again, YES, I shower after swimming each morning. With soap. Chlorine is strong stuff, okay??)

But lately I've noticed a couple of much bigger things that I think can only be related to the fact that I've started doing proper exercise for the first time in my entire life.

1) I am always starving. Now those who know me are probably thinking, "But Zander, you're always hungry." Okay true, but now things are on another level. For example, I had about SIX full meals on Sunday and still went to bed hungry. I can walk out of a restaurant after having eaten a three course meal, and think about stopping off at a fast food place on the way home. And I've had McDonald's (chicken nuggets and a hamburger) as a mid-afternoon snack almost every day for the past week, to the utter disgust of my coworkers. I always clearly had a ridiculous metabolism if I was able to do nothing other than eat, sleep, and drink and still stay slim, but apparently I've kickstarted it even further, and let me tell you, six meals a day ain't cheap.

2) Also, and probably more relevant to this blog...I can no longer handle my liquor. Example - last Thursday, I met up with people for a few drinks, had 4 beers and a glass of wine, and literally stumbled home because I was so drunk. Friday was even sadder. I used to be the person who could drink silly amounts of alcohol and still seem pretty okay, and now I've turned into what the Aussies would call "a two pot screamer". The answer is clearly that I have to start eating directly before or even during drinking sessions, which goes against what I generally believe in, but I don't really have a choice.

We'll see how I hold out. I wouldn't say this is the beginning of some weird and uber-healthy lifestyle where I don't drink anything than blended wheatgrass and only eat vegetables that happen to have been accidentally dropped by birds (or whatever retarded things people are doing these days, you know what I'm getting at), but clearly I will have to change a few habits if I'm going to try and be even a little more athletic.

Or I could just get fat, which is starting to look a lot more fun all of a sudden.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Mixed Feelings

I was reading one of Cristin's latest posts, and saw her reference to The Most Trusted 15 brands named by trendsetters.

Part of me is pleasantly surprised to see Red Stripe lager on the list. I've always been a fan, and naturally, being half-Jamaican, I suppose there's some pride there as well.

Sadly, another part of me is horrified that I've never purchased (or even heard of) more than half of the brands on the list. Trader Joe's and In -N-Out Burger are complete mysteries to me and I've heard of Whole Foods but I'm pretty sure I wouldn't know where to find one of their stores if I tried. All I can assume is that they sell food.

Am I that out of touch with my Generation? Or does this mean that I'm part of the dreaded "Generation X".

This is your random post for the day.

Do Not Try This At Home

Received this email yesterday:
OMG just got an email from Andrew and they were playing Circle of Death for his flatmates birthday and the flatmate had to be taken to hospital at 9pm with alcohol poisoning

Andrew is someone we taught the game to during the festivities in New Zealand. He was also the first person to spew, although we didn't know this until we looked around and he was sitting there with his cheeks all puffed up. Turns out he was contemplating if he should swallow it or go to the bathroom and spit it out. Revolting, I know. It wasn't easy for me to type, believe me.

The point of all this is simply to say, be careful who you teach these things to. There are a lot of dumb people out there, and you don't want to be the Johnny Knoxville of drinking games.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Lookin' So Crazy In Love

Well Friday was nothing to write home about (or blog about, for that matter), and I spent most of Saturday playing Suzy Homemaker and buying furniture, dropping off a NYC Subway map to be framed for my bedroom (random but I like the idea), and cleaning the apartment even more than I did 2 weeks ago when I first moved in.

And Saturday night was the Beyonce concert. Maybe because I've been so busy with work and weddings and traveling and god knows what else, but I actually kept forgetting this concert was coming up and had to be reminded several times not to make other plans that night.

I met up with Sesame and Nikki at Juice's place to have a few drinks before we got on the train out to Acer Arena. Once getting there we promptly lined up for beer (which meant we missed Chris Brown, but whatever) and then met up with Chip and Mickey inside the arena for the show.

I wasn't sure which part of the show was better, as she did end up performing my favorite song from her new album, but the Destiny's Child medley was great too. And she's easily the best voice I've ever heard live, not to mention the fact that she was dancing and jumping around the stage in high heels at the same time, which shouldn't be humanly possible. However I do have a few other highlights from the evening:
  • Realizing at one point that I couldn't actually hear Beyonce singing because Mickey was next to me singing so much louder and dancing around like he thought they might be shooting him in a music video at that very moment
  • Running out for two more beers each during every single costume change or interlude
  • During some interlude where there was a reference to ghetto cars with nice rims, a confused Mickey whispering into my ear "Is this a black thing?"
  • Getting outside after the concert and turning around to see Chip on the ground doing an impression of a mermaid
  • Paying a cab driver $100 (he wouldn't even unlock the doors until we passed our money -- or more accurately, MY money -- through the window) to take all 5 of us to a house party in Camperdown

A great night overall, despite some drama at the party later on that involved a certain someone grabbing Paddy by the shirt and accidentally ripping his buttons off, shattering his wine glass, and then getting Paddy's arm all cut up from the shattered glass, before being kicked out of the party. Some people are real winners.

Anyway it's Monday afternoon and work is still insane. I was actually planning to fly down to Melbourne for about 24 hours but then decided I couldn't be bothered and I'm still here in Sydney. Thank god Wednesday is a public holiday.

Friday, April 20, 2007


I meant to blog today but now it's almost 5.30 and I'm late to meet friends at a bar.

I only had 4 beers and a glass of wine last night and ended up feeling hungover this morning, so I'm hoping to take it pretty easy tonight since I think my body may finally have hit its limit. And I will probably have to work this weekend at some point, which is never ideal when you're feeling like death warmed up.

And I keep forgetting, but tomorrow is the Beyonce concert, which should be a blast. Hopefully pictures and details next week, enjoy your weekends!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

"I Believe I Can Fly"

Sorry I hate that song too. But it just popped into my head and there you go. Awful blog title.
Anyway I don't really have time for a proper post today, but here's one of my favorite pictures from this past weekend -- the (somewhat blurry) one of me jumping off the Auckland Sky Tower:

Confirmation of my theory that, yes, I would look hot jumping off a tall building. I love being right about these things.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Back To Business

Flew back into Sydney this morning. Plane landed around 7.30am, and after a stopover at my place to grab some food, shower, and change, I was at my desk by about 9.30. Needless to say I feel like crap. Let me try to give you a few highlights of the last few days though:
  • I'm sure New Zealand is a beautiful place, and I appreciated what I saw, but let's be honest, you don't see much when you spend more than half of each day in a house with a bunch of your friends getting completely wasted. All part of celebrating love and marriage, of course.
  • I love it when someone says they want to play a drinking game because they want to see someone puke all over themselves. Because you know that they are the person who will be most likely to achieve that goal. Them and their new husband, anyway.
  • For whatever reason, yesterday Paddy and I decided it would be a brilliant idea to jump off of the tallest tower in the southern hemisphere. No idea what I was thinking, but it was just a little bit awesome.
  • It is significantly easier to click on the "6am" flight on a website than it is to actually wake up at whatever stupid hour of the morning to make it to that 6am flight. And just in case you're ever wondering, business class is great and all, but it will not negate the fact that you're an idiot for flying anywhere that early in the morning. It is 5.15pm here at work, I feel awful, and I can't go anywhere because I have too much to do. Oh the pain.

I'll try and put together something more coherent for later in the week, I'm seriously a zombie right now.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Middle Earth, Here I Come

I'm leaving work a couple of hours early today to head to the airport, as my friends and I are flying to New Zealand for Chip & Mickey's wedding.

I'm pretty excited about the whole thing, partially because of the wedding, but also just because I've been wanting to check out New Zealand. I actually used to have the view that I didn't really need to go to New Zealand as I'd seen the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy at least once and that's pretty much the same experience, but then I realized that this time I will be drunk, which is completely different. I was only tipsy when I watched the movies.

We're flying back in on some painfully early flight in the morning on Tuesday, basically because we're all busy at work and out of annual leave days and will be heading to the office that day. To offset that misery, I've made sure to book a business class seat on the way back, I'll let you know if it was worth my frequent flyer points.

Photo album coming soon, most likely, although my camera was making some VERY funny noises last night and I've yet to confirm that it still works. I should never own anything expensive...

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


I'm completely out of it this week, but that's no excuse to not blog. Here's the summary:
  • I have so much work to do right now it's not even funny. I've never been through anything like this. I even came to work on Monday (a public holiday) for a few hours just to get some stuff done without someone calling me to tell me nothing for 30 minutes, as people seem to love to do. Granted, I made up for this work by drinking for 6 hours or so afterwards, but I think we can agree that's only fair.
  • I was feeling much better in terms of my recovery and the madness that followed. But on Monday I realized I was bleeding a little again. Was planning to ignore it, but just before I went to bed on Monday night I noticed something odd. Turned out one of my stitches had chosen to make an appearance. I pulled it out about halfway until it got stuck, clipped off what I could, and went to bed before I had the chance to faint in disgust. Another 2.5 stitches to go, I think. Fun fun fun.
  • There is this megabitch who walks around my floor at work with the most ridiculous angry look on her face at all times. I honestly think one day she might just give me an uppercut to the jaw for no particular reason. It's scary.
  • I should be excited because I'm off to New Zealand tomorrow, however I'm actually freaking out a little because I have so much work to do. And it ALL has to be done by the end of today, because I've stupidly let myself get booked in back to back meetings from 8am - 2pm tomorrow, and I have to leave the office to go to the airport at 3pm. Methinks I shall be working late tonight.

That's all I got. I actually *almost* have my pics ready from the wedding on Saturday, but if things keep up those will have to wait until I get back next week.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Yay Jesus!

Don't even know where to begin. It's day three of the four day Easter Weekend and I normally wouldn't blog on a Sunday, but I'm already having a hard time remembering what happened on Thursday so I'd better write some of it down now before it disappears with my damaged brain cells.


Having been at work by 8am every morning last week, I eventually had just had enough by 3pm and headed down to Cruise Bar to join some folks from HR who had been there since lunchtime for a farewell. It was a quiet night overall though, with a few more drinks at The Strand and then a few more at the Beauchamp before heading home before midnight. Not that eight hours of drinking should really be considered a quiet night, but this is all relatively speaking.


Friday started out pretty wholesome, with a nice breakfast in the 'hood with Ayesha, followed by heading over to my old apartment to do some tidying up. But then it was time for "Bad Friday" drinks at the Oxford, which were characterized mostly by really disgusting jokes and insulting each other. Just the way Jesus would have wanted.


I woke up and headed to Parramatta (think the New Jersey of Sydney) for my cousin Sarah's wedding, which was a blast and ended with us partying in Darling Harbour until after 2am. Plenty of stories etc., but I will save those for the photo album. Although my flatmate definitely must think I'm an idiot, as I rocked up to the apartment at 2.30am last night without my keys (which were still in my suit, which was back in Parramatta) and had to call and wake him up to let me in, after only one week of living there. I'm so evicted.


Well that's today, and I'm back at my family's house for a BBQ. I honestly can't believe how much I've had to drink in the last few days, and I'm expected to participate in a bit of a pub crawl this evening, so we'll see how I hold out.

I also love that the first thing I saw when I turned on the TV this morning was a bunch of cracked out beligerent bunnies raving, breakdancing, and banging each other in bathrooms.

Sorry to fly through it all, but if I actually manage to remember any highlights, you will be the first ones to know.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Easter Bunny Madness

You know, I could have sworn I had tons to blog about, but now that I'm here none of it is coming to mind.

Either way I don't think it matters, as I'm guessing not too many people are going to be reading this blog over the long weekend. We actually get 4 days off here. I still don't have a clue what the hell "Easter Monday" is, but I'm lovin' it.

Tons of work to do but all I can seem to accomplish is getting new high scores at this game right here. Latest score is 17110, best of luck kicking my ass.

He's One Of Us

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

How Quickly I Forget

Just a few days ago I was saying how I had learned my lesson about drinking on school nights. Which clashes somewhat with my current feeling of wanting to die.

A colleague was in town from our Adelaide office yesterday, so a few of us troopers decided to go out for a drink or two and be social. More than a few bottles of wine later, I remembered I was supposed to be at Ellen's place for Aussie Top Model and eventually made it over for the last 30 minutes of the show. Not that it helped, as I literally can't remember anything that happened on the show, other than the photos being in water and someone crying, which pretty much applies to half of the Top Model episodes from any country.

I am definitely faring better than the head of marketing, who looks like she might crawl under her desk any second now, but I'm not in a fantastic mood and definitely just referred to Australian dollars as "Monopoly money from Down Under" in an email to my entire team. I am not making any friends.

Which randomly reminds me of an awesome quote that Ellen's American boss provided not too long ago:

"Honestly, everything great in Australia is from America. You take everything American out of this country and what are you left with? 1912."

So offensive, how can you not love it?

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

"Oh my god there's a riot in Belgium!"

*Sorry about the random title, but it's from my favourite new French dance trash song. Learn to love it.

Ah, so the weekend. It was actually pretty awesome, even though it technically should have been horrible with having to move apartments etc. A few more details...


I actually made a really poor showing at my work quarterly events. We ended up at the trots, which is like a ghetto version of the horse races, except these horses pull buggies, and the people who attend this sort of racing are possibly the most wretched slice of humanity I've been exposed to since I had to meet a friend outside an exit from the Staten Island Ferry terminal (I'm telling you people, it was like standing watch at the Gates of Hell). I was hoping there would be a Wikipedia page to explain what the trots are, but entering that ends up redirecting to the entry for diarrhea. It was gross, but not that gross. Between the disgusting characters around me, a horrid hangover, and the fact that I was bleeding through my wifebeater, I ended up heading home before 9pm while everyone else partied until two or so in the morning. Ah well, at least I preserved my dignity. Not everyone else in my office was that fortunate.


Ah, the day of the big move. I literally hadn't packed a thing before I woke up on Saturday morning. Fortunately for all of my friends who had offered to help, I am an insane planner. I had emailed out a schedule of events a couple of days beforehand, and everything went according to plan, with the truck returned within 4 hours and only costing about $50.

The fun really started when we convened at Paddy's place afterwards. Actually it was off to a slow start, with all of us just sitting around drinking and talking, and even observing Earth Hour to recognize the threat of global warming. (I'd also like to take a moment to talk about the ridiculous difference between international news web sites and the same company's website for Americans. One has articles about Darfur, global warming, and political unrest. The latter has enthralling headlines such as "Hilary Duff feels pressure to be thin". There's a reason we're all idiots.)

However we felt like the night needed a boost, and everyone agreed that a bottle of tequila and a drinking game was in order. We tried to think of a game, when Juice finally remembered the rules for "The Circle of Death". This involved spreading a deck of playing cards in a circle, and having each person take a card in turn. Each number corresponded to a different result -- so if you picked a 4, all the girls had to do a shot. And if you picked a 7, you had to perform a dare, or do a shot instead. As a result, two people ended up playing most of the game in their briefs (made that much better because one of them definitely had Wolverine on his crotch).

But the best one was if someone drew an ace, which meant they got to make a rule. Juice decided that the rule would be that no one was allowed to say the name of anyone in the room. Do you have any idea how hard that is? This was made even better when I pulled an ace and declared that no one could swear, meaning that everyone was doing double shots because they'd accidentally say someone's name and follow that with an expletive.

You know when everyone is laughing so hard that they are crying, and start to laugh in really strange ways you've never heard before because they are having serious trouble breathing? It was just like that, for about 3 hours straight. We took a short break so that I could run out and get another bottle of tequila, which was gone in less than 30 minutes.

I staggered back to my new place around midnight or one, although a couple members of the crew managed to go out partying until about 6am. How they accomplished that is a pure mystery to me as I distinctly remember stopping off at an Indian take-away place and having the cashier laugh at me because I could barely stand up. Dancing was definitely out of the question.


Woke up feeling awful, but managed to set up my new room properly (pics of the new place can be found here) and then met a coworker for breakfast in the new neighborhood.

I then headed into the city to meet my aunt and uncle from England for a nice lunch at Cafe Sydney, where I've been dying to go since I moved here, and it lived up to expectations.

Eventually I headed home, cleaned up around the apartment, inhaled a pizza, and passed out by 8pm to sleep off whatever tequila was still sitting around in my body.