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and I see you standing there, looking Death Herself
as you see me you smile wickedly
knowingly
your hand touches mine, I wince
we embrace
and when we are through, you muse aloud
how quaint, how naïve I must be
to have expected a spark

Saddam Hussein: My part in his downfall

or

Cover my back, honey, I'm burnin' up out here: A Wartime experiment in over-exposure

I'm tired.

No, tomorrow I will be tired. This is just the prelude. I've spent the best part of a day getting from my hotel to my home, and I've not slept for quite a while. Tomorrow I'll wake and figure out what time zone I'm in. And no doubt curse as the realisation hits that I'm late for work.

But hey, I've just got back from a 14-night all-inclusive stay in the Dominican Republic, so spare me the rich tea and sympathy.

(free cocktails)

And I have to say, as a former all-inclusive virgin (quiet at the back!), more familiar with a rough guide and a ruck-sack, it's pretty easy to get the hang of it. Simply sit/lie down while reading/drinking/eating/smoking/sleeping all day, making sure to vary the current combination occasionally, and before you can say "Regime change!" you'll have whittled away at least a week.

(constantly)

Of course, you may want to leave the confines of the resort every now and then, in which case you'll need to choose one of the offered excursions. These range from the ludicrously over-the-top drinking and FUN-packed trips out on big boats and big trucks (most of which give you the chance to meet some local people, doing local things. Meeting tourists on big trucks, for instance.)

(they're strong, as well. the cocktails, that is.)

I check my email. I know what you mean about the trips, one says, it's like Butlins but with sun and turtles.

(and free bottled water whenever. which is handy)

I opt for a sedate and culturally charged trip to the capital, Santo Domingo, which as luck would have it is but 3 and a half hours away by coach. Unfortunately, some of the roads bear the mark of attention deficit during construction, but to make up for that, navigation is a cinch. To get from the Sirenis resort in Punta Cana to Santo Domingo, for instance, turn right, left, left again, head straight through Higuey, and turn left. Et Voila!.

(blissful room air-con)

On my own for this trip, I end up talking to French-Canadians, Americans sporting charming identical caps, and a Boston-based Irish girl. I learn all about the history of the island, Hispaniola, various members of the Columbus family, and a host of other golden trinkets of information. I take the opportunity to take some really godawful photographs of parts of buildings.

(Eat as much as you like, when you like.)

And on Sunday, my travelling companion for the fortnight and I opted for the relatively peaceful sounding catamaran trip to Saona Island. Hearing our rep use the word 'chill' puts me in a positive mind for the trip. Lying toad. Hour and a half on a coach, followed by a speedboat trip out to the island (anyone ever tried chilling on a speedboat?), with a stop off in 'the living pool', a large, very shallow expanse of water off the coast, replete with starfish. And, on this occasion, rum and coke. And a clever marketing ploy - give the British some hats to wear, then give them some rum, let them laugh a bit with the hats, the give them more rum. Just before you reach dry land, announce the cost of the hats. And watch as they all, without fail, buy 'em. Suckers.

On the island there's more rum, a quick lunch, and a wander up the beach (and fair enough, a few relaxing hammock moments, preciously guarded), before heading back to the mainland on what I assume is a typical common or garden cat, complete with some heavy stereo, and, yes, more free rum. There is too much merenguez for my liking, very close to where I was sitting, trying to look for all the world as casual as you like, while also trying on my best 'don't make me merenguez' face. Fortunately for all, it works.

And then, sadly, too late, I realise I could fry bacon on my shoulder, and frantically rub more factor 15 in.

And my nose is a little below par now, but if you see me, try to say nothing, and try to not let your eyes get drawn too much.

And when the heat was too much, I would retreat to my room, and watch Wolf Blitzer reporting the action from "Operation Syria's Next" (quick hint: when embarking on regime change, one will frequently find benefit in having a regime to change to. Anarchy is not always seen as progress), or watching parts, but never all, of HBO's showings.

Or BBC America, which I didn't even know existed, but which shows great (sometimes) Brit-shows, and is only possible thanks to the unique way the BBC is funded.

And I read. Boy did I read. Yes I did. I read:

And I gave up smoking, too. But more of that manana

hasta luego

No one ever said I want to be a stocker when I grow up...

It seems as if I'm one of the lowest forms of life slithering across this earth. When I'm scheduled to waste six hours of my life putting cans up on the shelf and mopping up spilled milk, my life seems to be completely flushed down the drain. To the customers I'm some sort of 'grocery whore', always there at their beck and call. To my other co-workers, I'm just another shit stain being smeared across this toilet known as the Sparkle Market.

To all you customers out there who stop by... don't think I don't see you glaring at me thinking, "Wow his hair's long. Jeez his job must suck badly, super-badly, super-mega-badly. I wonder if I could steal this six-pack of beer and get away with it, he's not paying any attention." I always see you drop that glass jar of Pace Extra Chunky Salsa, and I know that you expect me to clean that up... I mean, after all, it's my job right? You know what... Why don't you clean it up?

Every time I walk by my bosses I see them staring at me, no, I feel them staring at me because I won't allow myself to make eye contact with such people. They don't think I can figure out that all they do all day is sit in their office and scan all the paperwork, with their mechanical eyes, that shows them how much money they're cheating me out of. If I ever happen to win the lottery, I'd buy that store and make the managers watch as I burnt it to the ground.

So as the time runs out of my fifteen-minute break, I place my pencil down, take the last drag off my cigarette and scan a piece of paper that has this very writeup on it. You know, one can never proofread too much...

wump, wump, wump, wump

It's just after midnight, April 16th. I'm in room 19 of a large government building in Britain, staring at a machine churning out a long sheet of graph paper.

wump, wump, wump, wump

Like a seismologist waiting eagerly for the next shift in the tectonic plates, I count the squares between the peaks. 10 minutes, 8 minutes, 7 minutes.

wump, wump, wump, wump

I decide to get myself a drink of water. On the way to the fountain, I hear a scream and a whimper emanate from the room next door. Cup in hand, I pass by 20 seconds later to hear a quieter, but equally determined cry from what seems like a much smaller pair of lungs. Back in room 19, I turn down the volume on the machine.

wump, wump, wump, wump

Energy never disappears, it just changes its form and finds a new way to make you aware of it. A moment is a point on a vector that travels in the direction set for it by the energy from the bodies that combine to influence it. After nine years of moments, I'm made aware of it by the speaker at the back of the machine.

wump, wump, wump, wukkkkkkchchch

The baby has moved again and we've lost the trace. Enter Marie, the midwife. A quick examination proves we have no progress and no dilation. A relief since Sarah is only 36 weeks, a delivery now would be a little premature. That's the main reason we came in when the contractions got closer together. It's either a really slow start for something to happen over the next few days, or she'll keep getting the Braxton Hicks contractions for the next four weeks. Watch this space.

For all those of you who believe that there is a balance in your world that provides a new life as another is taken from us - I'm here to prove you wrong. On the way to the hospital I ran over a frog. There was no baby. Somebody tip the scales back the other way.

Some of you may remember me mentioning that I love a good BBQ. Well, after the horror that was the family BBQ, I am lucky enough to be having a BBQ at a mates place tomorrow, with beers, to wipe the memories of the weekend from my mind. A few people I know from tafe will be there, which brings me to my next point.

I am listed in The Everything People Registry : Australia. I live in Adelaide and, unfortunately, there are relatively few noders that live here too. However, one of them is the boyfriend of one of my lecturers, who just so happens to sit in my classes, and happens to also be coming to the BBQ.

Ummmmm this all means what to me?

Very good question. Well, unless you happen to be 876 it doesn’t mean a whole lot, so for everyone else, you can read on in envy of the planned activities. However, since there are only 9 Adelaide noders registered, having 2 of them (myself and 876) at a BBQ means almost 1/4 of the Adelaide noders are gonna be there. Therefore I’ve decided to rename my mates BBQ. It will now be known as:

THE MINI ULTRA TINY SMALL ADELAIDE NODER GATHERING OF (POSSIBLE) DOOM

Who be in:

Who be too scared to come:

Possible Activities

Food: As I said earlier, a nice big BBQ with plenty of chops, snags and hamburgers. A variety of salads as well as potato chips if the munchies strike. A McDonalds down the street.

Drinks: BYO alcohol, some coke. 2 bottle shops within 5 minutes each way.

Music: Whatever the host listens to, plus possibly a selection of my best metal mp3s.

Other: There will be a few non noders there, we can make fun of them for being less...uhhhh...noder...ish than ourselves.



As stated before this is, sadly, not a proper Adelaide noder gathering, however, if any other noders plan to be in the Para Hills area of Adelaide (that’s out north), /msg me or email me and ill give you the address. Ill bring out a beer and some food and say hello. =).



P.S. This is obviously not an actual gathering, otherwise I wouldn't have posted it in the daylogs, just one day before the event. However, as I said, any noder from anywhere who may be in the area is welcome to drop me a line and get the address so you can come round.

Note to self: Must remember to try organise a proper gathering of Adelaide noders...after the winter is over...and write a node with a similarly big, striking title.

I thought I'd give a shot at helping those with Noders Block since I see it mentioned so often in the Chatbox.

Here are some options:

Type Don, Jim, Mark, team, train, last or whatever the search box, check "ignore exact" take a look at the list. Anything there catch your eye? If so take a peek, see if it's a node or a nodeshell. See if you can write a more detailed WU on that particular person / idea.

Type "Top 100" in the search box (ignore exact perhaps) and take a look at some of those lists, such as Top 100 rock bands, singers, Top 100 books of all time, or Authors of all time etc. Any of those bands / books / authors / books etc catch your eye? Have they been noded? Could you supply a more detailed WU?

Select the "A year ago today" feature - and at the bottom choose 2001. Check out the nodes done that day, often the nodes back then were not as detailed as they could be. If any of those catch your eye, node them!

Type "award" or "prize" in the search box (ignore exact) take a look at the lists of awards. Anyone on those lists of awards catch your eye? Nobel prize winners for example?

Take a look at the C!'d WU's often times those WU's contain alot of leads to future WU's.

Hit the "Random Node" feature, you'll find alot of empty nodeshells, and simple Webster definitions that could be expanded upon.

Another option you may already know is The Content Rescue Team : Nodes

What's the most interesting thing you learned last year in school? Or at work? That might be good to node.

Another idea would be to go to a random link Yahoo, and node the first thing you find there. http://mangle.ca/ranlinks.php

Another good idea would be to go to http://www.metaspy.com/ and just watch what others are searching for, often it'll be something someone wants to know more about, is it noded here?



Well I hope these ideas are helpful. Please check this node again sometime as I'm having a mental block on some of the many ideas I have for this!

3 of my nodes that provide some excellent leads:

Country Music Hall of Fame lists dozens of famous singers not yet noded

Motorsports Hall of Fame of America lists dozens of famouse racers not yet noded.

Indian Fairy Tales has so many leads of potential historical WU's it's mind boggling.



Good luck and happy noding!

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