Monthly Archives: August 2011

Book shopping

So with current global financial shenanigans, I have been reminded that the Australian dollar’s lofty place in the world currency market will not last forever (and who knows, may crash tomorrow). THEREFORE tonight I felt it was time to buy the very expensive textbook I’ve been thinking about for a while.

And, well, even though it’s free shipping and they don’t put all your books into a single package anyway, a trip to Book Depository is not complete with a single book… THEREFORE it was my duty to spend all the money I saved by going there in the first place.

Well! I was delighted to see that in the last five days some Stella Gibbons books have been republished. I only recently became acquainted with Stella Gibbons when Cold Comfort Farm was published in a $9.95 Penguin edition a couple of years ago. CCF (aside from being congestive cardiac failure) is a parody of the “agricultural romance” novels popular in the 1920s. It is freaking hilarious.

After reading CCF, I searched online for more Stella Gibbons and there wasn’t a whole lot around – Nightingale Wood was occasionally available although I didn’t get around to buying it, but not much else. Today I learned that there are (at least) two more CCF books (one not out yet), plus another novel called Starlight – these were only re-released in the last five days! So tonight I have ordered Conference at Cold Conference Farm, Starlight and Nightingale Wood. And I am eagerly awaiting Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm which will be released in a few months.

I also purchased An Anatomy of Addiction – a book about two bigwigs in medical history and their erm experiences with the new miracle drug of their time, cocaine. Sigmund Freud is well known enough. William Halsted doesn’t have quite the same household name status – he was a surgeon who was very important in the development of modern surgical practice – he was a big fan of sterile technique and the use of anaesthesia (I think most of us would agree that anaesthesia is a welcome component to the surgical process). Should be an interesting read.

Now we just play the waiting game and see how many days the deliveries will be spread over…

In other news, yesterday I finally took care of 18 months worth of shredding. I do not recommend saving your shredding for this long, particularly if you work in an area with a high volume of bits of paper requiring shredding. Oh if only backyard incinerators were still legal!

An adventure

mysterious structure view 1

So it appears that I have been a bit of a failure in the blogging department lately. Oh well. I am currently having a spot of annual leave. It’s not that I don’t like work, but I am so looking forward to retirement.

Today I went on an adventure to The Powerhouse Museum with a teacher friend who has Fridays off. We actually visited the Powerhouse a few weeks ago but ran out of time that day and missed a few things. And there are a few new exhibits since then anyway.

So. Of note today (not an exhaustive list):
1. The very large tower in the photo above. It is not a part of, or at all related to the museum apart from being on the way there from the station. I looked at it from all angles and was none the wiser. On google maps it appears to be hollow. A friend finally informed me this evening that it’s a smoke stack!. So there you go.

2. The magical grand piano with a floppy disc drive that records what you play and plays it back – not as a recording, it moves its own keys. I actually saw this on a school excursion ~12 years ago and at that time it was pretty amazing. We’re talking about the days when 2Mb was the inbox limit for most web-based mail, no-one had digital cameras and mp3 players were rare and primitive. So I was pretty excited that it’s still there, although it’s not giving demonstrations anymore.

3. Behold! A double flageolot! (on the right)


In other news, I bought a Xaphoon a few months ago. It is a fun instrument.

4. Space

The space exhibit is pretty cool. It has a zero gravity simulator which is a little trippy, lots of replica satellites and whatnot, some bits of space ships or launching things or something… space suits, an emergency pod thing (basically a metal ball that falls in the if things go wrong…), space food, videos where astronauts say stuff about astronauting….

5. Love Lace is part of the big design dealie they have going at the moment. It appears that lace has been redefined to mean “anything with holes in it”. Anyway, there are some interesting pieces there. The female urinary and reproductive systems made out of human hair was perhaps the most interesting…

There were many other notable things to see but I don’t want to overdo this blogging lark.