Westpac doesn’t consider my pension “income”.

When you’re trying to just find out if you can even afford to EVER purchase a house, the first thing you do is talk to your bank right?

Well after playing email tag a few times, divulging ALL of my life’s most interesting financial aspects, spending 12 minutes on the phone with chit-chat and bullshit T&C’s, I was told that the only income that Westpac would consider was my wife’s Disability Income, and NOT my Carer’s Pension.

Because… get this, “if something were to happen to that person, then there wouldn’t be that Carer’s income any more.”

That is FUCKING COLD.

Okay, so I tell them that we have a disabled child, who will be special needs his entire life. No go.

So I told them I also have a verified disability and whether or not there’s an income stream for somebody being disabled in this house shouldn’t be an issue.

She told me “It’s not whether or not I agree with our policy, but it’s my job to enforce it.”

Man, Bree Hamilton. I hope you’re second-guessing that career as a Barista or some shit, because having to do that kind of thing would EAT MY FUCKING SOUL. But maybe you’re safe and don’t have one, dunno.

End Stage

The large piece of black sushi from the header graphic above is a stylised caricature of our sweet cat, Seven.

He had gone skinny for a brief bit, so we were feeding him more.  We always said that his heart was where his brain should be, so we’d kind of assumed he’d just forgotten to eat for a while.  He always liked it outside in the Cat Run more than the other two, so we figured he might have stayed out there so long he missed feedings.  He would often come in after a rainstorm, soaked through.  He was not smart.

And he was eating, lots.  Feeding him separate was working, we thought.  Then he just crashed.  A cat that never let anyone pick him up was suddenly falling over and quite cuddly when scooped up.  I made an emergency appointment and Wifeage loved on him on our way out, but stayed home with our smallest while I had our middle kid with me.  We kind of knew.  When we parted, that is.  We kind of knew.

He was in end-stage organ failure.  All the numbers were very bad.  I had to take the doctor aside to level with her and force her to level with me.  I told her that despite our poverty, money wasn’t an issue.  I’d sell the car, a kidney, drugs, my body.  Money wasn’t going to be what factored in a decision for our beautiful boy’s life.  She hemmed and hawed in the way that doctors are supposed to do.  They can’t sway you in your decisions, it’s like, a part of their oath or some bullshit.

But when I asked for chances, even IF it could be fought and we were willing to put him through that sort of treatment.  This sweet, stupid, lovely, semi-feral boy, being held down and tubed and blooded and caged for days.  If we DO this, what chances might he have?

She frowned.  Said, “I haven’t seen it, in all my years.”

At first I scoffed, because she looked barely older than the 14-yo I’d left in the waiting area with our sweet boy.  Then I realised that she was probably doing this when she was 14, and probably had plenty of years.  Enough to warrant that reaction.  She gains nothing from suggesting to me that he’d be better off being slept out.

It was straightforward and the constant communication Wifeage and I were having had no doubts involved.  I held him, for a long time, and he purred smoothly and nuzzled into my chest.  This gorgeous idiot that was so feral when we first fostered him that he’d panic run from any room I entered.  It was 6 months before I got to even pet him, yet here he was having the best Dad Loves of his life on my chest.

He barely flinched when he got his final shot, and he had the best nap of his life in my arms.  Then he was gone.

**

Now I’m told via emails from my mother, that my brother has end-stage liver failure.  She’s got a Master’s in Nursing but I still don’t really understand what she’s saying.  To me it sounds like, “His alcoholism finally caught up to him.”

My father, the doctor, hasn’t replied to my emails.  It’s my own damn fault, ultimately.  I trained them all that email was best for me and I hated phone calls and that it was okay for us to go a couple of months without contact sometimes.  Now my phone is silent and I’m not sure I wanted that.

But then again, it’s standard for me to hear about a death with an email from my mother that simply has that person’s name as the subject, usually weeks after the event so I have little to no time to be a part of anything.  This can be particularly troublesome when she sends me an email subject name of some young and healthy person who has recently proposed to their true love.  Because when I go to open it, I think they’re dead, only to find them blissfully happy.  So name in the subject line doesn’t always mean dead?  Got it.  Sort of.

My father is famous for telling me that my grandmother died by responding to a question about another event that he might not make it because he was still in California for his mother’s funeral.  That she was my Grammy and I might’ve liked to be told she’d died was lost on him.  I don’t expect he’s considered I would want to hear about my brother now.  He’d probably tell me afterward, I think.  No guarantees though.

So I’m not new to any of this, but I sure as fuck don’t like it.

I didn’t like what happened with Seven, either.  But at least everybody involved knew what was up.  It was hard, there were explosions of tears, there were sentences that were incredibly difficult to finish.  But I’d so much rather it that way than this.  This feeling that I’m forgotten.  Not important enough to keep involved.  While my only brother lays dying.

I don’t like this at all.

And what’s to come doesn’t promise to be any better.

Maybe this’ll be different.

I had sent word to my dad to let him know when I’d be coming home for a visit after one of my earlier years of college, and I hadn’t heard back from him for several days. While never one for prompt correspondence, it was slightly unusual. But unlike other times when he’d explain his absence with a two-part summation involving an activity and location like “ice climbing” and “Mount Rainier” or “kayaking” and “Bighorn River” this time he simply said that he was sorry he hadn’t gotten back to me because he’d been “out of town for Sibyl’s funeral.”

That was how he told me my grandmother, his mother, was dead.

The years showed that this was neither out of the norm of the level I was involved nor the worst way he could deliver news, so it’s actually a perfect example.

Now I’m actually reeling, completely unprepared emotionally for what I’m feeling, in reading actual messages from the former family. I’m so out of the loop I had to ask my son who this person was with the cool name only to find out it’s my wife’s youngest brother, my boy’s own uncle. It sounds for all the world, for the first time, that someone out there that shares her blood is willing to set aside any and all of the ridiculous bullshit that’s kept them apart, for the sake of coming together.

And I don’t know how to feel about that.

That’s not actually true. I know how I feel about that. I’m elated. Overjoyed. Buoyed. Hopeful.

But those are all incredibly dangerous emotions when you’re already weakened, beaten down. Vulnerable.

Her grandmother passed on Sunday. How we found out is too pitarded and inane to let only these words at, so I’m foregoing that part. We found out and it wasn’t directed towards us, ’nuff said.

Now Uncle CoolName tells my son that my wife’s auntie, long-estranged for reasons no doubt as stupid as ours, died the Thursday before. Cancer.

And I had one of those instant thoughts, the kind that make you anxious that they’re inappropriate or weird or wrong. My first thought was, “Did Nan know? Somehow, through her dementia, did it make it in that her youngest daughter was dead? Did that cause a ripple effect that eventually moved her on as well?”

Suffice to say that anytime in your late 90’s is a perfect acceptable, needs no explanation, time to pass on. But still. The thought was there.

And in this, the time afterward, where we’re floating and stuck and forgotten and neither she nor I nor our children have ANY FUCKING IDEA what it was that we did that was so awful, so despicable, so unforgivable, that we were simply excised from the entire family. In this time, I wonder to myself, what comes next?

Where do we go from here?

The truth is probably that people that have been shitty are still going to be shitty, and people that were neutral or ineffectual or fence-sitting are probably going to still be like that too. No one has really changed, nor will they. They were what they were and they are what they are, and maybe it’s our foolish egos that keep wondering what it is about US that makes these people be this way.

I mean, there’s nothing in any way to suggest in my life that I wouldn’t want to know about my Grammy passing on, yet my father simply didn’t think of that. Maybe it’s something similar with people that have never considered even the smallest of things, like the fact that everyone in the entire family knew who Nan’s miniatures were meant to go to rightfully.

Maybe all these things just never occur to them. And here we are wondering what it is about us that’s gotten us here. Maybe the truth is: Nothing. This is just who they are. This is just who we are.

Maybe if we’re all better at accepting that, moving forward into this, the time after The Great Nonsense, we’ll do better at doing it together.

There’s Spinach in My Pants.

I may be letting a bit of a secret out by admitting this, but… I’m not really just like I am in this diary versus Real Life. I write in here with stories and opinions that paint a certain picture, build a persona of someone that isn’t quite like me.

When the time comes for your beloved Wife to undergo painful and serious abdominal surgery in order to bring forth your child, you take it VERY seriously. So be warned, these pictures are NOT meant to be funny.

30 CCs of something medical sounding, STAT!

I lied about being in IT, I actually AM a doctor. I had just finished my rounds when Wife was wheeled into the PreGettingBabyCutOuttaYou Area.

And by “rounds”, I mean “can you believe they didn’t even kick me out or ask me to knock it off?”

Some SERIOUS Awwwwww

I found out that you don’t need tits to make the sounds coming out of her head stop.

I can’t be positive, but I think she looks like me.

I’m also not completely certain, but I may actually be completely, 100 percent, absolutely, wholly and truly, lamblastedly, shaznasterly, SMITTEN with my child.

Mummy captured her First Car Ride

We got to take her home on Australia Day and I think I managed to convinced her that the fireworks and barbecues were all in her honour. She’s obviously not impressed, but that may be because Mother Nature tried to cook her. She does this though, this sleeping thing, where she sleeps all the time. Sleepy. Sleepery.


I’ve dumped more than a few extremely personal and private things here in this diary, but because of certain circumstances and by the very nature of what has become Web 2.0, it’s not quite for that anymore. I come here to keep in touch with those of you that can’t be bothered changing bookmarks or buddy lists and all that shit.

For those that care and haven’t been there yet, there are more pictures and baby awesomeness and love and everything that’s wonderfully goo about the World over in my other diary. Email me juddholeATdiaryland.com. If that doesn’t work, then leave a comment in here with your email addy. If that doesn’t work, then join up on the Notify Thingy, get a Notify email from me which has my current email on it, and then cancel the Notify thingy and stalk me long enough for me to get you to put random groceries in my fridge. Crap, you can go to the GuestBook too, I think, that’ll get me your email without giving it to the spammers, which is exactly why I don’t put it on here. Thanks.

Perfect.

She’s happy, she’s healthy, she’s perfect.

Simply Perfect.

They made me leave the hospital, though I tried to stay, and I am home now, staying up much later than Wife would allow given the amount of sleep (~4 hours over last 2 days) and excitement (~50 Brazillian Shitloads) I’ve had lately, but I can’t seem to settle down.

So, I’m going to have a shot of Tequila, as I love it and it was my Xmas present, and try to carve from this night a slice of sleep.

My bed, a soft, welcoming, and recently laundered place, is empty with the exception of me, and one of the most profoundest of understatements that I could muster right now would be this:

I’m NOT looking forward to my first night away from Wife since I came here.

But I AM looking forward to seeing my baby again. I do love her so.

Pictures and more later. Smooches.

So. Writing. And Work.

I actually wrote this in an email to a friend, but then figured I’d not only like more concrete documentation of this line of thinking than an item in my “Sent” folder, but that I’d like to share it with more than just one person.

I?ve been doing lots of thinking about this kind of shit in the last few weeks/months. I?ve even written about it before, but probably in one of the other blogs and not JH, and it?s getting to be something of an issue in Life.

See, the thing is, unlike a great many, I actually Know where my passions lie. And, also unlike a great many, I’m starting to learn that I may actually have a talent for them. Much like you, El Puerco, and my amazing and wonderful wife, I?m pretty good at this writing thing. And I wanna do it, like all the time ?n stuff.

Then there?s work. I am in the Fucking IT field, and Yes I capitalise it because it means that to me, where I am good at what I do and can be quite successful if I choose to be. I?ve seen how it happens and I know what to do to make it a reality.

At the end of the day, what will I have?

More money, sure, but kids that have grown without me knowing and a wife who knows that I love her? on the weekends. Needless to say, Not for me. And I mean, No Fucking Way In Hell for me, thanks.

I drive to work, fighting retarded commuter traffic, and work 9 to 5 like the rest of the slobbering shitwipes in the Rat Race, and then I go home, where Life really is. I have about 2 hours with my kids, playing on the floor and watching the Simpsons, but they gotta eat and it takes them for fucking ever sometimes, so it?s really about an hour or so. Then, it?s another 2 or so hours with Wife and then bed. Then, get up in the morning, get the boy’s lunch and their brekky ready and then do it all over again.

Is it worth it? Welp, gotta pay bills and eat. There you go.

Thing is, you don?t see a lot of time for writing in there do you? Nup.

I?m fine with that, for now, because I wouldn?t trade my time with my family for anything in the World, and I gotta be at work at least 8 hours in order to make enough money to eat and have a house and shoes n? shit. There?s no time to write, but my time is buying some important things. Again? for now.

I?m not sure what you?ve got for a social life, but if you?ve got the time, then WRITE. Do it. Write as much as you can and as often as you can. I?m not one for dropping names (?cept Russell Crowe and that?s only because I like to say that I heard his cock stinks) but I actually used to correspond with Augusten Burroughs, who wrote some of my favourite books and is a #1 bestselling author and I think is even making a movie or something. He?s special and famous and shit, and gave ME writing advice, cos I really AM that cool (someday I’ll write about that time I met the Brit Asshole from American Idol and thought he was somebody I knew from hockey. Heh. Classic).

His advice though, was basically just what I told you: Write. Alla time. Always.

You?ll get better at it the more you do it as well as be busy building a repertoire, a repository, a bunch of cool shit that you can someday do something with. You?ll be able to have enough examples of random shit that anyone possibly interested could even think of.

Somebody at a newspaper says, “Can yeh write up somebody’s obit?” and you say casually, “Actually, just to be morbid and because I was pissed at him for that crack about my grades in High School… here’s my father’s. Oh, he’s not really dead either, so you can ask him how good that one is. Ignore the paragraph about the cause of death being a flame-engulfed kayak paddle to the rectum and you’ll find it’s actually pretty accurate.”

I’ve even got me a blog where I write nothing but the shit from my brain. And by “shit” I mean “excrement” coz that’s what it is. Shit. But it needs out and it feels cool to get it out and be partially entertained by it. Nobody reads that one, ‘cept Wife, and that’s how I like it.

See? Even writing Shit is still good for writing skilz. Fuck, do like the Smartypants chick and just stick it all in a book. Hell, call blog entries chapters and you would barely need to edit.

So that’s my advice. Same as Augusten’s and he’s brilliant and if I met him in person I’d kiss him full on the lips and I don’t care that he loves smokin’ him some pole. No tongue tho cos I’m married.

I honestly don’t know how long for the corporate world in the Information Age I am. I mean, all up, I still just make fucking websites, it’s not like I’m curing Cancer or curing anything cool with the word “genital” in it. Ask Wife, I still lay in bed some nights and piss and moan about this career, vowing to chuck it all in and not care if the 4 (soon to be 5) of us huddle under a goddam scrap of cardboard as long as we’re happy, and all that.

Life’s too short to wait too long for the really, Really, good shit. If you’re anything like me, then writing is your Really Good Shit, or at least can provide for it, and you need to Get On It.

Fuck, I’ve sat here through my lunch break writing this and now I’m all ready to just jump up, tip my desk over, throw my monitor out the window and onto the odd Korean who sells me Sausage Rolls, and fucking go home and write a book that will feed me and my family for the next 37 years.

When I haven’t, and it’s 5:30, and I’ve finished yet another fucking website, and I’m headed home, and I’m tuning in the traffic report to see whether or not to avoid the Graham Farmer Freeway, please don’t ask me why I didn’t. Don’t or I’ll fart on you. And lately they’ve been a weird combination of sweet cigar and rotten cabbage, with a hint of nutmeg. It isn’t worth it.

I’ll get to it soon. Serious. Just not sure when, but it’ll happen. Ask Wife, I get that look in my eye, and she knows it’ll happen.

Shatsicles, I gotta get back to it.

Take care o’ you.

Turkeyrangadooderup Day

We’re prepping for an Ameralian Turkey Day here, at our home, for ALL the family, tomorrow.

CrazyCatLady has, naturally, diva-like and dramatically usurped the role of Center of Attention and is cooking the turkey, stuffing, and candied yams.

Yes, I told her the latter is disgusting and noone really eats them, but she’d already loudly called Wife a “dickhead” when asked if she’d make the gravy too, so I sat and stroked one of the only cats I like over there whilst absently picking tufts of fur off my shirt.

Me and my preggolatious wifeage shopped today, South of the river in the more White Trashish section of town. There’s nothing quite like a change of scenery, and getting back to our WT roots.

Plus, and Yes I’m saying it out loud, I like to compare myself to some of the unfortunates around me and make myself feel better. Fuck it, we all do it, man up and admit it.

By that same token, sometimes I do it simply for the freedom of being “one of them” and let my asscheeks vibrate violently while emitting ducklike noises in the middle of a busy store.

It makes Wife giggle, it makes me smile that oh-so-satisfied-with-yourself-smile and it makes other people uncomfortable and somewhat grossed out. Sweet.

My feet are now propped up and resting, with the promise of a rub or two, after I’ve created, from scratch, two pies.

Crust and all, Pecan is cooling and Pumpkin is waiting to come out.

No Fucking Shit. From Scratch.

I’ve already had two today, but I SOOOOOOOO deserve some serious Sexing right now.

Tell me again why I’m typing this?


P.S. I’m Thankful. So fucking thankful.

I’m writing for the sake of it in here anymore, not for novels, but DAMN, I could go on and on.

I’m thankful, and tell them, every day, for my wonderfully sensitive and capable boy, who may be the most perfect child ever created. For my girlchild, who can be the Naughtiest Shit Ever, but loves like it’s never been done. For the belly resident, who does a disco every time she hears my voice and/or I touch her mum’s belly.

I’m Thankful for all good things and good people. You know who you are.

Go. Hug something and pretend it’s from me. Now.

GO.

Thorpie Says ‘I Fully Quit!’

The Thorpedo retired yesterday and that’s what I came up with on my own, making Wife blow a little bit of the clear kind of snot out her nose.

And I’m not even FROM here. Heh.

NO, I’m not linking and all that. You can look ‘im up.

Faaawksakes. Here:

The champion swimmer announced yesterday that he has quit the sport at just 24 years of age.

It brings to an end a remarkable era in Australian swimming, Thorpe having dominated events on the national and world stage for the best part of a decade.

The career tumble-turn began during his recent stint in Los Angeles, where he says he started to look at his life in a new light, and decided that swimming is no longer the top priority.

The Olympic champion told a packed news conference it was a difficult decision to make but conceded ‘swimming was no longer a top priority’ and said he wants to concentrate on other challenges.

Thorpe’s list of achievements include; five Olympic gold medals, ten Commonwealth Games gold, 11 World Championship titles, and nine Pan Pacific gold medals.

He’s also set 21 World Records.

That’s NewsieSpeak for “Yet another Aussie who whupped him a whole lotta ass.”

And my kids love his cereal.

I think.

Or maybe his is the one that’s got more chocolate and honey and syrup and shit in it. Crap, I forget, but it’s the one with his picture and quote on it and we make more fun of it than we do “Tang”.


Stuck in muffuckin traffic this morning and late for Weekly Company Meeting only to find out that Boss was late too and meeting was postponed.

Wrote to Wife, “T’ain’t Fair.

Huhuh, ?T’ain’t Fair? sounds like lots of wrinkly patches of funny-looking skin walking around eating Cotton Candy, riding Roller Coasters and trying to win Teddy Bears.”

I fkn kill me.


Tired of thinking about writing a Final Goodbye for this diary.

Tired of thinking that I need to write a freakin’ novel every time I’m on here.

Funny shit gets said and thought of and whispered across pillows and yelled through the shower steam. Every. Damn. Day.

Why not write it down and share it?

Mebbe even make some snot blow out. Not the big ones either, that bounce when they hit your pant leg, but the kind that’s clear and a bit runny and people only notice when you try and wipe it up.


Buddy casually walks up to Wife and says, “Guess what.”

Not as instinctually inclined as myself to shoot back a quick “Chicken’s Butt!” she simply asks, “What?”

“Bunnies,” he even-more-casually replies, “that’s all” and then walks away.

That’s my Boy.

Trick. Or Treat.

Through the seemingly constant cries of “but we’re NOT American!” we did it. Me and my boy braved the cold and cruel elements to do our part for the propagation of my cultural identity.

We went Trick-or-Treating.

And by ?cold and cruel? I mean… um… ha ha, it?s Spring here.

Wife had a few rows with some e-folks about the origins of the celebration of Hallowe’en (which is why I now spell it “correctly” after ResearchGirl sprung into super action) and I was prepared for the worst to greet us. I figured we’d get a few “we don’t celebrate that” or “you’re not in America anymore” or even “only freaks and pagans scoop still-steaming goat entrails onto their heads whilst screaming at the moon and rubbing themselves in poo… and we’re not them.”

I understand that it’s a Consumer Culture, which can sometimes be construed as an all-devouring beast hell-bent on World Domination. I understand that there’s a difference between wanting to be like America for the cool shit, like 35 Cent and his G Unit and the ways that he carjacks and fires an Uzi, and NOT wanting to be like America for the dumb shit, like… well… the same shit really.

The hypocrisy is not lost on me though, when I am told in one breath that Burger King is called Hungry Jacks and the signature food item of this entire continent, Vegemite, is owned by Kraft, an American company, then in another I am told that “We’re NOT American, so we don’t celebrate Hallowe’en” (though they don?t spell it properly when they say it).

Sidenote

I almost officially renounced my country after the recent announcement concerning the ?V? stuff. Seriously. What the fuck?

I don?t give 5 shits if customs comes to my house and GW himself mispronounces some words while arresting me, I stowed some of that wonderfully pasty brown stuff in a package to Mom just yesterday.

It?s awesome and one of the 3 Best Ways to start the day aside from coffee and sex. Almost in that order.

/Sidenote

I listen to an extremely popular radio DJ poke a bit of fun of the ?holiday?, saying that it?s not exactly necessary to glom on so wholeheartedly to the American bullshit right fucking before he plays a song by The Fray (whom I frickin? LOVE, don?t get me wrong, and are even from Denver) that gained overnight popularity of insane proportions from a TV show.

An American TV Show. About doctors and drama and sex ?n shit.

The Morning Show DJs take this show, which had some serious dramatastic finale the night before, and TALK ABOUT IT ALL FKN MORNING. Then, when they play the song, it?s got lines from the show interspersed throughout it.

The Song. On the RADIO. HAD TV IN IT. The AMERICAN Song had AMERICAN TV in it.

But you?re too fucking hotshit for Hallowfuckingwe?en. Gotcha.


I’m not the warrior that Wife is, so I simply stated my argument against this line of thinking as “I AM American… and lollies… I mean, candy.” I?d like to thank my sis-in-law for that line, coz really. Loll… crap, Candy.

Free Candy.

Jeezus-H-Crickets-stuck-in-a-Roach Motel, is there anybody who doesn?t like dressing up and pretending to be something else?

And Free Fucking Candy?!?

My little girl had previously decided to be very naughty and blatantly ignore some very steadfast rules, so she missed out on the fun, but Buddy had a freakin? great time.

While sorting his booty in the kitchen, he quietly and earnestly told Wife that he really liked Trick or Treating, ?I was a bit shy though? he admits, ?but I got used to going to other people?s houses.?

Testament to the Wonder that is this child, his first instinct for the first 3 houses was to give THEM the candy. He honestly thought that the whole idea was to go door-to-door and give out candy, as that?s what we do when people knock on our door.

Heh, though we only had 4 visitors, they came in a group, and they weren?t wearing anything other than their school uniforms. The red-headed, heavily freckled one carrying the skateboard was wearing his backwards, Wild Man that he is, and he busted out some of the best Human Beat Box that I?d heard in a while. Seriously, my inner Talent Scout wanted to sign him to a contract.

The only redeeming thing that I heard from the radio talent was a story exactly like that, where he?d heard that in America they spend weeks planning and decorating houses and children, and when doors are banged upon a loud screeching ?TRICK OR TREAT? is the cheer.

By a decent contrast, he received a trio of yardapes much like us, who were wearing nothing other than street clothes, and who greeted him answering the door with a shuffling of feet and a grumbling, ?got any lollies??


8 of the 20 houses later and the end of our ?circle? completed, we?d netted a bag of Smith?s Chips, a 2 dollar coin, some chocolates that we got to pluck from a tray that was obviously an Anniversary Gift, a couple of Cherry Ripe?s from the boho backpackers that had just come back from Craving Shopping, and yes… some lollies.

We made some friends, we met some of our neighbors close up, and got nothing but rave reviews for the ?little Ninja man!? even from the old Asian lady whose dinner we apparently interrupted and who had no freakin? idea what we were on about until I repeated (for the 3rd time) ?Happy Hallowe?en!?

So embrace some ?Merican Shit or don?t. But, if there is any reason to loosen your sphincter up and ditch that goddam hypocrisy about my culture, I can?t think of a better one right now than dressing up in something cool, visiting all of my neighbors, and wangling some free candy.