Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Thought for the Day

Smiths Australian Sausage Sizzle flavoured potato chips (crisps, if you will) are a phenomenon of multi-layered taste sensation that should not necessarily have occurred in the real world... 185g later... bring on the English Lamb & Mint!

Monday, March 27, 2006

Annual Bike Ride - It Rocked!!!

Yeah Baby!

This weekend was the Annual Warburton Bike ride... except that it was from Geelong to Queenscliff this year. What a weekend! Despite having to make a 7am rise on Saturday (who gets up that early on a Saturday!? - although I have to admit to a most scrumptous lie in until 7.30 ;P), it was completely divine. By the end of Saturday the things that hurt the most were not my cycling legs, but my cheeks from grinning too much :D

Thanks for Geordie for organising such a successful weekend, and especially for organising the sublime weather. The 2am, 3am & 4am wake up call care of the football team camping next to us is all but forgotten. Two days of 30ish deg. C days... light breeze and completely blue skys. The trail was relatively flat and the scenery was gorgeous. The beach on the Saturday arvo was the perfect antidote to a morning of hard work - crystal clear water to float, swim and contemplate in and soft sand to snooze on. Even the semi-sprint on the Sunday trip home was enjoyable! As was the flat tyre in the last 5km which 2 handsome men fixed for me!!

And the company... well, that was the best part.
Thanks guys :) It was awesome!

g xoxoxxoxox

ps. so many good photos.. here is but a sample... note, these have been shrunk - more photos and better resolution avail. on request.

Rob & Matt use camouflage to blend into the Vline crowd
On the train from Southern Cross Station to Geelong.
Yes, it is blurry - sorry.

Strange thing are afoot at the Steampacket Gardens in Geelong
Women on Sticks - they are real!

On the road!
Michael leads the pack

Geordie - looking fresh.

Cath & Geoff consider whether all roads lead to Queenscliff
At our first pit stop.

Geord & Soph
Yes, it is a perfect day.

Rob & Sonia
So shweeet!

Sonia, Rob, Matt & Michael on the prowl.

<>It's Thomas!@ End of the Bellarine Rail Trail

The View - lying on the beach. *sigh*

Hey there Geordie!
How you doin'?

Master Kum contemplates the meaning of life.


Soph & Sonia play a little frisbee

The whole gang at dinner

Midori and champers... the perfect way to end the day!

Massage… oh yes please!

On Sat 18th March, we celebrated Cheryl’s birthday in style… 5 months late, but who’s counting? A trip out to the prestigious Heritage Golf Course for luxurious and lusciously relaxing day spa treatments followed by lunch at Tarrawarra Estate (, a winery & modern art museum in the Yarra Valley. By the end of the day, we were sooooo relaxed.

Here are some pics from the day. Plus a few reviews at the bottom.

Love g XOX

Relaxed to the max - post massage
Bring on the wine.
Amy, Cheryl, Katherine, Monica & Gayle @ Tarrawarra

The Mr Darcy Lake @ Tarrawarra

The architecture at Tarrawarra

Ride that cow Crowgirl!

The Yarra Valley


Badminton @ Comm Games


Commonwealth Games – Teams Badminton - Gold Medal Match

20th March 2006

Malaysia vs England.

For this English born Malaysian Australian it was a win-win situation. However, before entering the stadium my loyalties were with Malaysia… afterall, how often do the Malaysians have a chance at winning any sport?

Going into this, like many, I was not that hyped up about the Comm Games, but I was blown away by the skills of these players.

On the night there were cocks flying everywhere… shuttlecocks that is (I know, lame joke). I’ve never been to a badminton match before, and found it strange that after almost every 3-4 points, especially in the Men’s doubles, the shuttlecock gets damaged and has to be replaced with a new one. They hit the shuttles with such power that you could see dust and bits of shuttle flying off as the racquets made contact - an awesome sight to behold. Another thing I enjoyed was that because of the way the shuttle falls, unlike tennis, the skill of the players, rather than the serve, plays a much bigger part.

Surprisingly the majority of the crowd were there to support Malaysia… or at least the most vocal of them were. The support section was so large that in between matches they were even doing a Mexican wave. One thing I do know for sure, the shouts of “Malaysia Boleh” made a welcome change to “Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, Oi, Oi, Oi”.

The team event meant that it was the best of 5 matches and the Malaysians won 4-1, losing only the first game – the Mixed doubles. The most exciting game of the night was the Women’s singles. Close to the very last point, it lasted three times as long as the men’s singles with a score of 27-25; 20-22; 21-18. The most awesome display of skill was definitely the Men’s Doubles: 21-14; 21-14. An explosive combination of power and finesse, the shuttle reached a speed of 284kph during the game, there was a 52 shot rally and 21 shuttles were used. Wow.


Sole Cinema Review:


Matchpoint: 2/5

Cast: Jonathan Rhys Meyers (Bend it like Beckham, Velvet Goldmine), Scarlett Johansson (The Island, Lost in Translation), Emily Mortimer (Young Adam, Pink Panther)

In a nutshell: Some good ideas, but overall not well executed and quite boring in the middle.

Synopsis: Troubles begin when Chris Wilton falls in lust with his fiancée’s brother’s fiancée. Did you get all of that?

Good things about this movie: Rhys Meyers and Johansson. Woody Allen does not act in his own movie for a change. The acting is not neurotic as WAllen moves tend to be. Originality of ending.

Bad things about this movie: A WAllen movie not set in New York seems to be missing something. Mortimer is annoying as Chris’ fiancée and therefore undermines much of the main plot. While original, the ending is somewhat inconsistent with the rest of the movie. It’s really really boring in the middle.


Finally on DVD


Pride & Prejudice: 4/5

Cast: Keira Knightly (Pirates of the Caribbean, Bend it like Beckham), Matthew MacFayden (Spooks – tv show)

In a nutshell: Just as good as the highly revered BBC version.

Synopsis: Jane Austen’s story set in Georgian England about a family with 5 daughters who need to be married off. Things start to get interesting when the handsome Mr Bingley and his austere friend Mr Darcy move in next door for the summer.

I have to admit to being obsessed with the BBC version… Colin Firth *sigh*. So the benchmark for this one was pretty high. Surprisingly, it managed to reach it, and almost exceed it. Because it is 3-4 hours shorter, it gets to the point much faster, and you don’t even notice large chunks of storyline are missing. I have to admit to liking the set much more in this version, it is much warmer and welcoming and the score is quite beautiful. The ages of the younger actors are much more appropriate to the story, and bring a vibrancy to the movie missing from the series. Having said that, while quite good in his own vunerable way, MacFayden’s Darcy isn’t quite as sexy as our Mr Firth. Some of the older cast, Donald Sutherland, Brenda Blethyn and Judi Dench are perhaps not as convincing as they could have been. Kiera Knightly takes a pleasant turn as Elizabeth Darcy, not at all irritating as she can be sometimes.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Get into Flixster & the Axle Whitehad Project!

Well, hello people out there!
Just a quick posting....

What's going on:

Finally decided to get off my butt and get some work. Will be doing some basic (hopefully) temp work which will take me all the way up until the box office at the Comedy Festival. Can't wait! - watch out for Comedy reviews coming your way from Mid April! For those wanting to catch up for a coffee or lunch... I'll be on Bourke St from this Tuesday... I think only 2 blocks away from AXA!

For those who actually read this blog:

I think I may be able to get around my technological inadequacies and set up either a mailing list to notify of new entries or a way of e-mailing new blog entries to you. If you are interested, let me know and I'll try and set something up.


There's a great website called Flixster (thanks D for inviting me!). Basically it allows you and your community (friends your invite) to rate movies and share ratings. It's a much quicker way to see my movie ratings without having to read through my tedius comments on movies! The only down side is you can't give half stars.

To check it out go to:

Or to join my community, the following address should work (if not, let me know):

A couple of random photos:

Tree on the uphill climb just near Fairfield Boathouse

Oh Sweet Melbourne by night.
The Commonwealth games fish on the Yarra.
One fish per country.
Yep - I don't get it either.
(Warning - this picture is blurry if you make it any larger, sorry!)
Big thanks to Cheryl & Jase for their company tonight.

A gig review:

The Axle Whitehead Project @ The Cornish Arms, 12/3/2006

They began at a disadvantage. With an $18 pub entry fee, the show obligated to be good. They got off to a very shaky start, the first song was not great and it was next to impossible to work out whether Axle was skatting or singing in another language. However, the rest of the gig had me toe-tapping and dancing in my chair. With a keyboardist, drummer, bass guitar player, lead guitar player, sax/accordian/cow bell player and Axle on vocals, sometimes pretending to play the guitar (don't know why he bothered), they looked like they were having fun on stage and I think that transferred to the audience. They sang mostly covers, and a quite a few that I've seen Axle do before at Bennetts Lane. The highlight was definitely 'Fragile', a beautiful rendition which showed off the talents of the group.

For those who were unlucky enough to miss it. Apparently The Axle Whitehead Project will be performing every Sunday of April at the Cornish Arms. If you are interested, I'm keen to go again... especially if the entry fee is less than $18.

One lonely movie review:

Capote: 3/5

Cast: Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Catherine Keener

In a nutshell: PSH deserved the Oscar, but the movie is a bit slow.

Synopsis: Tells the true life story of Truman Capote as he writes one of the biggest novels in American history, In Cold Blood.

The acting from both main characters is great, particularly PSH – and the believe it or not you forget the annoying voice is annoying almost straight away. However, the movie should have been half an hour shorter… they could have just cut out 30mins from the middle, and it would told the story just as well.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Happy Birthday…. To me!


The girls took me out for me birthday a couple of Saturday’s ago on the most adventurous of days! We travelled all the way to Geelong to experience the phenomenon that is Bellarine Adventure Golf. Yippeee!! It was ace! Thanks girls ;) Here are some pics.

love g

ps. only a few movie reviews this time around... have finally finished Voyager, but have started watching a very addictive 76 part Korean series (Dae Jang Geum - so not sure how much movie watching there will be coming up. Will try my best though! ; )

Those poor young things have no idea what lies ahead...
Monica, Cheryl, Amy, Katherine, Gayle

Oooo... look at the pretty colours!

Thanks to Amy, our lovely showcase model.

Cheryl tees off

Errrr... Amy, we can see you.

What's up there Katherine?

The ball gets sucked up the long tube and then rolls down the red railings, cool huh?!

Lunch at the Barwon Heads Hotel

The girls go for a walk on the beach after lunch

Monica has some fun with some sexy men

Monica, Cheryl, Me and Katherine hang out with some big buoys!


Movie Reviews

This week, we examine how to make a comedy and how not to make a comedy.

Date Movie: 1.5/5 (@cinema)

Cast: Alyson Hannigan (American Pie), Sophie Monk (Popstars)

In a nutshell: Very crass spoof humour

Short Synopsis: Girl meets guy and gets engaged, but has to overcome her looks, her parents and his gorgeous best friend on the way.

The best thing about this movie is trying to pick the wedding movies being spoofed…it’s not very difficult. Watch for Meet the Fockers, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, and My Best Friend’s wedding amongst others. There is absolutely nothing subtle here, and every line has been crossed. Only advisable if you are brain dead.

The 40 Year Old Virgin: 3/5 (on DVD)

Cast: Steve Carell (The Office, Ron Burgundy), Catherine Keener (Capote, Being John Malkovich), Paul Rudd (Ron Burgundy, Romeo & Juliet, Friends)

In a nutshell: Funny and endearing.

Short Synopsis: Follows the trail of a 40 year old man as he attempts to lose his virginity

This is a movie that could very well have been offensive but wasn’t. The jokes are mostly funny and not OTT. All credit goes to Steve Carell who wrote and starred in this one. Despite his character being desperately tragic and painfully geeky, he is extremely likeable, and you just want him to succeed. Expect big things from Mr Carell in the future. The supporting cast are also excellent.

The Promise: 3.25/5 (on DVD)

Cast: Dong-Kun Jang, Hiroyuki Sanada, Cecilia Cheung, Nicholas Tse

In a nutshell: Beautifully stylised chinese fantasy

Short Synopsis: Young girl promises that in exchange for becoming a princess she will lose any man she loves, that is until time can be reversed. Meanwhile the evil dude wants to kill the emperor and have the princess for himself. Who will stop him?

This really is a beautiful movie. Most of the special effects are obviously computer generated, but it’s all so damn pretty. Despite the plot, there is plenty of martial arts action. And in typical Chinese Fantasy fashion, the story is quite inconceivable, but entertaining none the less.

Some oldies

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun: 2/5 (DVD)

Cast: Sarah Jessica Parker, Helen Hunt, Shannon Doherty

In a Nutshell: Cheesy 1984 teen flick

Short Synopsis: Teen (SJP) attempts to dance her way onto a popular afterschool dance programme despite parent, arch enemy and boy problems.

Look for the really bad fashion – especially Helen Hunt… the massive plastic grasshopper has a hat was just never going to catch on.

Dogma: 3.5/5 (DVD)

Cast: Kevin Smith’s 4th movie with huge cast incl. Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Selma Hayek, Chris Rock, Alan Rickman, Jason Lee.

In a Nutshell: Extremely witty humour taking on Christianity

Short Synopsis: Two exiled angels find a loophole that allows them to return to heaven. They must be stopped or all existence will cease to exist.

As with all Kevin Smith movies, it’s a fine line between clever cynicism and just a wild good chase of no consequence. I would tend to believe this one is the former. Alan Rickman is such a babe!