Disgusting Feet

For as long as I can remember, my mum has told me I have ugly feet. She made it my defining feature and when it was her responsibility to dress me, she made sure to only ever buy me closed shoes. Even in summer, I wasn’t allowed to wear thongs or sandals, let alone go barefoot in the ocean. I think I was the only kid at the beach who was wearing water shoes, and it embarrassed me enough that I still remember it to this day.

At some point during my teenage years, I developed a nail fungus condition. Cheltenham is a really beachy southeast suburb and I decided to disobey my mum one night and swim in the ocean without shoes on. Something went wrong and I picked up some sort of fungus on my toenails. I couldn’t tell my mum because I had a feeling she’d either cut my feet off, kick me out or ridicule me forever, so I had to visit a podiatrist in secret by myself. 

I felt ashamed of my feet at that point more than ever, and it devastated me that my already ugly feet had just become even more repulsive.  

Being a teenager at the time, I didn’t have my license and had to get a two-hour bus to visit a bulk billing podiatrist. I also couldn’t afford to pay for it with the money I made at my after school job, so it was just an all-around very stressful experience. Fortunately for me, the podiatrist was really nice and helped me realise that I had one of the most common foot conditions. In the Cheltenham area, I don’t think anyone else would have been that nice, and I remember feeling grateful that I had made the effort to go and see the podiatrist even though she was so far away. 

I spent the next couple of months fixing my fungal infection in secret. It was tough without support. 

Mechanics and Gorillas

I just saw the strangest thing… I’m not quite ready to talk about it, so let me tell you a little bit about my day up to the moment my life changed forever. As most people do, when I woke up I thought this would be a perfectly normal day. I thought nothing weird would happen at all. After getting ready for my normal day, I took my car around to an auto electrician in the Seaford area, seeking a fix up for my vehicle. Once that was done, I drove to work and did a regular day of things that I usually do at my job. Nothing out of the ordinary. After my work had been completed, I got in my car and decided to drive through the woods on my way home. That was where it happened. That was where my life changed. I will never forget what I saw there. What did I see? I saw a gorilla holding a bunch of coloured balloons.

What’s so weird about that? Well, that was just the beginning. I continued driving, deeper into the woods. After about ten minutes, I saw a strange tree, its branches all warped and spiralling upwards. I’d never seen anything like it. And you know what was on top of this tree? That same gorilla. That was when I started to think I was just imagining things. How could that gorilla be moving around the forest so quickly? Was there something in my car’s air conditioning that made me hallucinate? But I’d only bought it recently, and the guy I got it from said he’d been to the best mechanic for a roadworthy certificate Frankston had to offer. So, surely it couldn’t be that. Not to mention I’d just taken the vehicle to a mechanic that day. No, I wasn’t hallucinating. This gorilla was real.

So yeah, if you drive out to the woods, keep an eye out for a creepy gorilla with a bunch of balloons. He’s not dangerous or anything, but your life will never be the same once you’ve seen him.

CAR-PG Woes

I thought this Cars Go Vroom game was so amazing a few months ago, but it has really lost me now. I’m not sure if I’m getting bored with the game itself or this specific group and storyline. We finished our first car adventure a while ago and it was overall pretty good, but I think the Game Master may have run out of ideas now. Cars that are going on a spy thriller quest? That seems like a bit of a stretch. Not very realistic. And I know how funny that sounds, from somebody role-playing as a sentient car and all, but it has just gotten ridiculous. I think the worst part is that Motor is actually getting even more attention in this new adventure we’re on. He’s easily the worst character in the group, so why is the story revolving around him? Nobody asked for that.

I think I need to find a new group. I found this one at a mechanic in Hawthorn, so perhaps I should go to a workshop for car repairs in Glen Iris next time and see if anybody there plays Cars Go Vroom. If they do, I’ll definitely ask to join their group. I don’t think I can take much more of Motor in my role-playing games. Sometimes I just want to role-play punching him in the face. Instead, I spend most of the sessions on my phone. When the Game Master asks what I want to do, I tell him that I continue racing in my world tour. That usually buys me about an hour before I get asked again. 

I was talking to a guy online recently who said that there are lots of Cars Go Vroom players around my area, so I think my plan involving a mechanic close to Glen Iris is my best bet. If all else fails, maybe I’ll try Goblins and Grottos instead. I’ll whip up a homebrew race called the car folk and continue playing Lightning, my awesome character who says things like “wow” and “ka chow”. He’s super cool, so I wouldn’t want to role-play as any other kind of character.

Accident prone

I’m sure you’ve all heard the term ‘most accidents happen at home’. Well, I think I’m the living proof that’s the case. At home alone, I’ve broken my arm, slipped a disc in my back, dislocated my collarbone, and sprained my ankle. Don’t ask how these accidents happen, I’m just clumsy. The ankle sprained happened twice! Melbourne’s best podiatry clinic had to treat my ankle. Unfortunately, the ankle is a part of the body that if you injure it badly once it will struggle to heal back to its full capacity. Now it is constantly fragile and the slightest slip can cause it to dislocate or re-sprain itself. It’s actually a huge hassle.

Does anyone else remember when Melbourne had all these water restrictions and it was recommended that you carry buckets of water from the bath or laundry to water your plants? I was one of the people who religiously followed this rule. I’m not exactly the strongest lady ever, so when I was carrying these buckets I had to really concentrate. One particular day I was rushing and the water spilled out of the bucket and onto the floor as I was walking down the steps in my backyard. The water caused me to slip and sprain my ankle really badly. It took months to heal and never healed properly. Then a year later I was jogging lightly and somehow misjudged a curb while crossing the road. I landed weirdly and re-sprained the same ankle. The podiatrist believed that there was a good possibility that had I not had the first injury, the second injury wouldn’t have happened. Now I constantly wear ankle support insoles to try prevent further injuries and to promote healing.

I doubt my ankle will ever be back to normal but if the insole stops me from constantly spraining it again and again over time then so be it. As someone who really enjoys running, I find that having a sprained ankle has impacted my ability to keep fit and stay active. 

My European Mechanic

I’ve got this really funny mechanic named Flavio. He’s easily my favourite mechanic I’ve ever had. Every time I need car repairs, he has a funny story to tell about his life back in Europe. Honestly, I like hanging out with Flavio so much that I’ve considered deliberately getting car damage so that I can just have a chat with him. The last time I was there, he joked that I should just ask him out on a date. Classic Flavio. I feel sorry that you can’t know Flavio as I do. He’s seriously the best European car mechanic in my area. He’s a European car mechanic in multiple ways, as well. Because he’s European, but he also works on European cars! Because I feel so sorry for you, dear reader, I’m going to share four things about my friend, Flavio.

  1. Flavio likes to collect old music records, even though he doesn’t have a record player and has no plans to get one. Apparently, he just uses them as coasters for his coffee, while he’s completing engine diagnostics and other mechanic-y things. Classic Flavio!
  2. My awesome car mechanic loves to practice yoga on the weekends! You wouldn’t expect it from a man like him, but you can see that it really pays off. He’s in great shape, especially for someone his age. I’ve asked where he does yoga and whether I could join him, but apparently, he just does it using videos online.
  3. This one is really crazy, but Flavio believes that cows are often abducted by aliens in their space shuttles! He reckons he’s seen it happen on multiple occasions. How strange is that? If you want a mechanic close to Frankston who knows what’s going on in the world, Flavio’s your man.
  4. Flavio is afraid of train tunnels. I know, that’s a pretty strange fear, but he says that he absolutely can’t go anywhere near them. Every time he’s going to take a train, he first checks to make sure it doesn’t go under a tunnel.

There you go. Hopefully, that gives you a good idea of how cool Flavio is. Hopefully, you will get to meet him yourself, one day.

History of Conveyancing

Today is my first day lecturing at the University of Conveyancing, and I’m really nervous. I’ll be teaching the History of Conveyancing class. I’ve prepared a script for the first few minutes, and I’d love to know what you all think. Please tell me that it’s good. Alright, here we go.

Listen up you no-good, worthless snail-lickers, my name is Thompson Ryan, and I’ll be your lecturer this semester. Today, we’re going to be learning about the absolute basics of conveyancing. We won’t be talking about what the best conveyancing practices in the Richmond area are. We won’t even be thinking about that, so get it out of your heads. Today I’ll be answering the simple question: what is conveyancing and where did it start? 

Let’s start at the beginning. Conveyancing began way back in the 1300s when a nobleman by the name of Sir Thomas Cooper decided that he wanted to buy the property of a local peasant. In order to assure that the process was done legally, he told his court accountant to learn all about property purchasing laws. Thus, the first-ever conveyancer was created. I don’t care how fake that sounds, that is the exact and true story of how conveyancing was invented, according to this university’s curriculum. If you want to pass my class, you’d best put that to memory.

I’m sure you’re wondering all about my personal connection with conveyancing. Well, listen up, you chocolate-coated tissue-eaters. I worked for years in the industry of conveyancing. Prahran was my suburb of choice. Do you want to guess how many houses I have been involved in the sale of? Over five hundred. If you ever want to get close to those numbers, you’d better pay attention, because History of Conveyancing is the most important class you will ever take. Are you ready, kids? Good, let’s get learning, then. 

So, loyal reader, what do you think? Am I going to blow this class away with my awesome lecturing ability? Let me know in the comments!

Flower Trouble Solution

Has this ever happened to you? What’s that? You can’t actually see me because I’m typing on a website, rather than in a video? Dang, that’s really going to ruin this pitch of mine. Well, I’ll try my best to get it across by text.

Has this ever happened to you? You walk along the street in your fancy suit, after a long and tiresome day at the office, in the heart of the city, wherever you live. You’re just about ready to get on a train, throw on a podcast and relax on the long hour home. But then, all of a sudden you notice a beautiful stand, filled with every kind of flower you can imagine. Daffodils, daisies, desert roses and more. You realise that you haven’t done anything nice for your wife in a while, and she does really love flowers, so you go and ask if they have any standard roses for sale. They’re a flower stand, so of course, they have roses for sale, silly. You grab this beautiful bouquet of roses and head onto the train with your headphones in, listening to the latest episode of Monster Hunters or whatever podcast you’re into.

Oh no! Your foot got caught in the gap between the platform and the train! Although you aren’t in any real danger, your roses are now sprawled all over the train floor, and a guy with muddy boots is jumping all over them! You can’t possibly give these to your wife! What are you going to do?

Boy, do I have a solution for you. Did you know that in this glorious day of the internet, you can actually buy seeds online? You can buy flowers too! Isn’t that amazing?  Well, I mean, technically it will probably take you longer than walking up to a stand that you were close to anyway, but you won’t have to worry about transporting them home, which was the whole point! What are you waiting for? Make your wife’s day and buy some flowers on the internet!

Missed Buying Opportunity

The last time I spoke to you guys, I was talking about my control issues and how my husband wants to hire a buyer’s advocate to act on our behalf to help us when buying our first home. I understood where my husband was coming from and appreciated

 that he was trying to help me, but it was just too much for me at the time.

I needed baby steps, like letting my husband fill up our car with petrol instead of doing it myself or letting him choose the meal we serve to guests on a Saturday night. These types of things would’ve been hard for me in general, which goes to show just how hard letting a buyer’s advocate in Malvern East (or wherever we choose) take over the buying process. I just can’t fathom letting someone make such life-altering decisions on my behalf.

So, unfortunately, this isn’t a happy story about how my husband persevered and I decided that a buyer’s advocate would be a good idea. In fact, it’s actually a story about how upset I was that I didn’t end up listening to my husband. I understand pragmatically that I messed us up by not going with a buyer’s advocate. The proof is in the pudding. 

We found our dream home and it went to auction. I was there in control of what we did on auction day, and it turned ou

t that all my best efforts were useless. Despite how in control I was, and how sure I was of my decisions, I got beaten out for the property by a buyer’s advocate. Malvern, as it turns out, is our dream suburb to live in, and I messed it up and we won’t be living there any time soon.

I wish I was able to listen to my husband. I love him dearly and I do trust him, it’s just my own personal issues that get in the way.

Punching Balustrades

This is really bad. Really, seriously bad. I totally underestimated the power of Death-Jitsu. It wasn’t supposed to go like this, but I’m in big trouble now. All I wanted was to teach my friends what it was like to be punched all the time because I’m always losing at Punches, a game where we punch each other and the loser has to do some undesirable task. I went and trained under a master of Death-Jitsu, who taught me how to deliver an awesome punch of extreme power.

So what’s the problem? I just used that awesome, super-powered punch on a glass balustrade and accidentally broke it. And this wasn’t just any glass balustrade, but a glass balustrade that has been there for hundreds of years. It’s basically a relic.

Somehow, I don’t think there are any businesses for glass repair near Melbourne that can fix the mess I’ve made. They don’t even make this type of glass any more. My boss is totally going to notice, and then I’m super fired. I just wanted to be good at Punches like everyone else!

Maybe I can find some sort of martial art that helps you magically fix broken glass. If I can master that in a few hours, maybe I’ll be able to fix the stair balustrade, and then my boss won’t be able to tell me off or fire me.

Either way, I’ll have to be more careful with my Death-Jitsu moves. No more destroying random property. I’ll just walk up to my friends, challenge them to a game of Punches, destroy them, and then never use my martial arts moves again.

As for the balustrade, well I doubt I’m going to find a magical solution. I’ll just have to keep my boss away from it until enough time has passed that nobody can blame me for the damage. Yeah, that’s probably my best bet. Well, I’d better get started.

Office Designing Games

I can’t believe my boss has asked me to set up the chairs for our big party today. My friend and I always get stuck with the most boring, most mind-numbing tasks, because the office manager doesn’t trust us with the more exciting stuff. Why can’t we go pick up the cake or set up the decorations? But no, he’s just like “Okay, Michael and Riley, go set up the chairs or you’re fired!” Well, maybe I want to get fired. Maybe I don’t want this lousy job if all I get to do is set up the chairs.

So what, we got a commercial office design company near Melbourne to make our office look nice. Big deal. I could have done that in my sleep. All we needed was a fresh coat of paint on the walls. Alright, I’ll admit that the office does look pretty nice now, but do we really need to throw a party to celebrate? That seems a bit excessive if you ask me.

Obviously, Michael and I haven’t bothered to set up the chairs yet. What’s it going to take? Probably like five minutes. The party isn’t for a few more hours, so we’ve been slacking off by playing old arcade games we found in the company garage. Funnily enough, there’s one where you work to complete commercial office fitouts around Melbourne. I played that for about five minutes before getting bored. But then I found a game called Obliterator of Worlds, so obviously, I had to try that. It was out of order, but I managed to mess with the wires a bit and get it working. Michael is being a total buzzkill, suggesting that we set up the chairs before playing the game, but I’m not buying it. He wants to play this game just as much as I do.

What’s the worst that could happen? A sentient monster comes straight out of the game and tries to destroy our office? Seems unlikely. If Michael wants to get rid of the fun, maybe he should go back to playing Melbourne Office Designers 2.