Jan 30, 2012

Hey Stellaaaaaaaaaa, I Have a Giveaway....



Hey Stellaaaaaaa...
Sorry, couldn't resist. But this post has nothing to do with Marlon Brando or any streetcars named Desire.

The Stella in question is Stella Sparks, one of the main characters in the lovely Lisa Heidke's new book, Stella Makes Good. Following on from the success of Lisa's earlier novels (Lucy Springer Gets Even, What Kate Did Next, Claudia's Big Break) and released earlier this month, it is a sometimes funny, sometimes sad, always honest look at a handful of women, their relationships and families, and how they interract; the secrets they keep, the lies they tell not only to each other, but to themselves too.

Stella and her friends Jesse and Carly are all facing certain crises in their lives; lack of confidence and loss of identity, marriage separation, problems with children and extended family, anxieties and obsessions, fears of infidelity, and an overall uncertainty about the future.

A girl's night out which goes off the rails sets off a chain of events in their lives and it becomes clear things are about to change for all of them. But for the better or worse? Add to the mix a few handsome doctors and Jesse's sister Louisa who has a bombshell of her own, and what you have is a thoroughly entertaining read, not to mention some hot desk sex. And of course then there's all the nappies, dummies and dog collars, with not a baby or a canine in sight. Intrigued? Rightly so.

It raises questions .... What would you do if you knew a secret which could dramatically alter a friend's life? Would you tell, or would you keep it to yourself? And how would you react to threats to keep your mouth shut? Would you cower under the pressure, or would it embolden you to speak up? And what if revealing the secret meant you had to disclose some embarrassments of your own? And why am I now looking at ordinary suburban houses differently, wondering where my local neighbourhood sex parties are being held? And why did that lead me to checking out the new lingerie line by Dita Von Teese? Okay, I may be going off track here...

Anyway, I laughed, I nodded, I went "ooooooh", I sighed, I wanted to slap some characters, hug some others, and I may have even welled up a bit at one point. And no, it wasn't during the desk sex.


To celebrate the release, the gorgeous Lisa (pictured, right) would love to give away ONE copy of Stella Makes Good to a lucky reader. All you have to do is make sure you are following or subscribing to this blog, leave a comment below (make sure I have your contact details) and one name will be drawn at random on February 7th at 10am my time. (which is Australian Central Something-or-other)

Good luck, and watch out for Lisa soon appearing in my hard-hitting *cough* Interview Series.


Jan 26, 2012

Mission Possible: Wine Protocol

Our mission today, if we chose to accept it, was to drink this entire bottle of 1999 Shiraz, all 6 litres of it. We accepted. Mission accomplished.
Our livers will self-destruct in 5, 4, 3........





But wait, there's more to drink....


Jan 20, 2012

The Interview Series: Myself




I have a series of interviews lined up in the coming weeks... okay, by series, I mean two... so I decided to first test the format on someone who doesn't really matter. Myself.

I plan to give all my future victims... err, I mean, interviewees... yes, all two of them (hopefully more at some point)... the same list to complete. I hope they find me less ridiculous than I do.


Finish these sentences.

My first words were… probably met with disappointment.

My first words should have been… get me out of this nuthouse.

My last words will probably be… get me out of this nuthouse.

When I was an innocent child I thought… every family lived in a nuthouse.

My teachers probably remember me as… having a different name.

I’ve always wished… I was taller. I'm too short for my weight.

If I could swap hairstyles with someone for a day, I would choose… Jennifer Aniston or Angelina Jolie. Tough decision. Now I know how Brad Pitt felt.

I almost peed my pants when… Lance Armstrong followed me on Twitter, accepted my dinner invitation, and DMed me to ask for my address. I guess that's 3 near-pees.

The most memorable laugh I got was… when I was doing Michael Jackson-esque dance moves at a Christmas party, squealed a high-pitched "wooh" and grabbed my crotch. My friend laughed so much she actually did pee.

If I had George Clooney’s phone number… Lance Armstrong would breathe a sigh of relief.

The weirdest thing I’ve done for my work/art/partner (pick one) is… ask my mother if my husband could wear one of her dresses. I won't explain, I'll just let you ponder that.

One moment I’d like to forget is… only one? A party where there may have been plentiful wine, then vodka skolling contests, before some shirt-lifting and dancing in front of a window, followed by rolling of an ankle and falling over in the garden.

I cannot leave home without… reminding myself to NOT participate in drinking contests.

I’m embarrassed that I don’t know how to… upload photos from my dumbphone to any sites. Yes, I am the dick who still pulls out a digital camera when the candles are being blown out.

The personality trait most useful in my life is… my sense of humour. See my answers to the first four questions. Enough said.

My favourite Muppet is… Beaker. He talked gibberish nobody understood. After drinking contests, I can totally relate.

In the movie of my life story, I would be played by… Kate Winslet. She's worked with a merkin before.

When in doubt… blame the dog.

And finally
Leggings as pants. Discuss.

LEGGINGS ARE NOT PANTS. Sorry for yelling.



Thanks for playing, me.
No worries, me.



Jan 17, 2012

The Girls With The Draggin' Title Pages

I know, the title of this blog post makes very little sense right now, but it will all become clear. And it's not about either the Swedish movie, nor the Hollywood copycat version with Daniel Craig.
And before you get carried away, I don't mean these girls...



... I mean these girls...



... the lovely Lisa Heidke's novel Stella Makes Good, and the gorgeous Lia Weston's novel The Fortunes Of Ruby White.
The Girls were draggin' around with me on my recent holiday and I decided to share what they and their somewhat bedraggled and sand-encrusted title pages got up to.

A convoy of vehicles (two cars) packed to the hilt with 4 humans, 2 dogs and beach paraphernalia (as well as jumpers, ugg boots and umbrellas - the forecasted weather was awful) headed south of Adelaide for the 4 hour drive to the lovely seaside town of Robe.
Luckily for my bladder, the dogs needed as many breaks as I did, and the lactose-challenged drivers needed their iced coffee hits, which unfortunately led to a windy evening, but that's another story.
Lunch at Meningie was a shivering affair. The dogs crapped everywhere and The Girls refused to get out of the car, lest their (at that stage) pristine pages get ripped to shreds in the biting wind. (the real kind of wind, not the flatulence kind, that came later).
Eventually, The Girls couldn't hold their chapters closed any longer and needed a wee break at Kingston so I decided to let them out to paraphrase on the grass under the Big Lobster.



Please excuse the stoopid man photobombing The Girls, he followed me around all week.

When the convoy arrived at the holiday house (possibly bigger than my own home, in fact the main walk-in-wardrobe could've housed a small-statured family quite comfortably), The Girls quickly checked out the fabulous kitchen and declared they would do all the cooking.



Unfortunately, this plan evaporated when it was found that cooking can be difficult when you are an inanimate object with a paper back and no thumbs. Damn. Fish'n'chips for the win.
Spent a f-f-f-f-f-freezing day sightseeing at Beachport. By sightseeing, I mean sheltering from the wind and eating copious amounts of food, followed by hot cinnamon donuts for which we had no room in our guts. But we made room.
The Girls found a sheltered spot down by the jetty...



...while I scoped out my next holiday home purchase... (I wish)...



And don't be fooled by the blue skies and sunshine, the warmest day was when it finally hit 21C but the wind was still coming straight from the South Pole. (not to be confused with the cinnamon-scented wind coming from over-full arses)

The Girls visited The Obelisk at Robe...



...and had a great view of the mighty Southern Ocean. I didn't. Bloody hair.



The Girls were fondled gently in the evenings by the other girls... Wait, am I still talking about the books...?



The Girls were becoming more than a handful... ahem... and I decided they needed some discipline in their spines, so I took them to the old gaol/jail ruins where they frolicked their little paragraphs out in the exercise yard...



... before sneaking off to the gaoler's rooms to offer him a 'synopsis' in return for their freedom...



... before getting their endsheets slammed back into the cells.



After a hard day of flashing their text around, The Girls relaxed in the sun...



By the way, I think it's quite unfair that I got burnt and am now peeling, whilst The Girls managed to keep their pretty covers intact. Bloody publishers and their glossy cosmetic makeovers.
Anyway, we had a BIG day of boogie boarding and The Girls managed to keep all their conjugations dry, though somewhat gritty. I tell you, that sand gets in every semi-colon, doesn't it?




One last evening of relaxing on the back deck with a drink... what? You can't see The Girls' drinks?.... Oh, yeah, I swallowed them. Can't have them getting drunk and putting their apostrophes where they don't belong. They might damage their hyphens.



I may not have a book out, but I do have a coffee mug inspired by me, so it posed with The Girls for one last shot before heading home...



The End.


I had thoughts of this being a review, but I was so tired from being The Girls' tour guide, social director and chaperone all week, that I did not read one single page of either book. Sorry Lia & Lisa. Next week....

Jan 5, 2012

Boobs, Pavs, Pink Rubber Gloves and The Adventures Of Hubert Squirrel - Christmas 2011

Just photos today.

No words.

Some of these photos need no explanation anyway.

And some of them defy explanation.

Note: There may have been some alcohol involved.








































And then we were all knucking fackered.

The end.


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