Your Local Book Store…

John Scalzi has this neat little post over on Whatever
Amazon, Local Bookstores, Me
Go on read the article… I’ll just wait until you are finished….

Are you done? Great, now while I can see Amazons marketing machine saying

“In a free market economy we are just trying to do all we can to create awareness of our brand and drive sales…”

Yep that is right… you have the right to do it… but should they? And should you as a consumer?
Personally I have bought books, cd’s, games etc from overseas – from the Amazon’s, Book Depository’s, Ozgamestore… and all for the same reason… the PRICE.
I have a young family, a mortgage, I am the major bread winner (not discounting the huge amount of work my wife does to help support me and enabling me to be able to do that…) I have to be careful about what I/we spend on luxury items like books…
However, something John wrote really resonated with me…

I have an Amazon Prime account and I get lots of use from it, because where I live often the alternative to buying from Amazon is buying from Wal-Mart, and on that strata of retailing, I’m happy to let them go after each other, with knives and bludgeons. If there’s a locally-owned alternative, however, then I generally go there. I pay extra for what amount to intangibles for me, but what’s intangible to me means a job and a business to someone else. That matters, especially these days.

How do I react to that seeing that I have admitted to using the cheaper overseas option before… I agree with what he has written – I really do! Yet how do these conflicting parts merge? How can I both support local and pay the premium and ensure I met all the other obligations in my life?
It’s really quite easy… I use priorities.
For instance I limit the amount of comics I collect and then buy them from my local comic store. I plan my new book purchases and buy from my local bookstore. I buy 2nd hand computer games from my local gaming store. I have a budget and when it is gone… I borrow books from the library and share/borrow games with my mates… In short I do what I can…
This carries across to other aspects of my life… I don’t always shop at the green grocer or the butcher, we can’t always afford South Coast Milk – but we try and we support when and where we can…
Its all any of us can do.

John Scalzi in the Wild

Well not John himself but a few of his books.

I managed to snap these at a bookstore near our hotel in Tokyo – I know I have a lot more to blog about the trip but this will have to do for a start.


Reading left to right – Old Mans War, The Ghost Brigades, and The Last Colony.


Me with The Last Colony – I did think about buying them, but as I have them already and in a language I can actually read I left them in prominent position for a Japanese reader to find and buy! I know that John has posted these on his blog when he gets Author copies of them, but I thought it would be nice to see them all together and the covers are really good… I wish all covers where done like this it makes the books look really exciting… not that they are not exciting to read… I’ll go now…

But before I do… here is the Gundam which was built in Odaiba in Tokyo… It is so fantastic and I am so glad we got to see it. As you can see from the people standing at the base – it is BIG… REAL BIG. make my little model (which I am yet to start building) look a little small compared… but a don’t have the room to have a 4 storey Gundam in my yard so the Gundam on the shelf will have to do!



The Rumour of my death has been over rated… I survived the 4 days of Canula and even the next weeks 3 days of horrible-ness (you don’t want to know!! Trust me). I did however upset my lovely as she has never seen me sick – I don’t usually get ill but in this case when I did I really did… I think the 3 days off last week where the first in… well the first with this company and I have work here for 3 years… I canna remember being sick (well having time off work) This century… I might have… Any hoo!

Thanks Jeff for the thoughts and well wishes, I hope all your shit gets sorted and keep your chin up and shove the nasties off a tall building!

‘Cause It’s Friday and I’m in LOVE!!! ah Cure pop who ever needs anything more then that? Who? No one I tells you no one!

Well Scalzi week is well and truly over and I finished “The Last Colony” and “The Androids Dream” – TLC was brilliant and really made me wish I had spent the extra money and got the hardback of “Zoe’s Tale” when I was at Galaxy… but alas the funds are not there for such spendings… weddings cost too much (do I really need to wear a suit? Can’t a pair of Speedo’s cut it??). TAD was very different and reminded me of Asimov’s detective stories which I loved and might have to source out of the shelves of no return and re read… I am off to Canberra tomorrow for work I am doing a Trade Show set up Thursday work through to Sunday then home… I am spending Sunday night at my friends place in Canberra so I will get to do some socialising which will be nice I have yet to see there new place and am looking forward to seeing my good friend again – it has been too long. So that was going somewhere… oh yes I might be able to take some time to read an Asimov book as I will be without my lovely for the weekend I will have nothing else to do…

Whoa Genius has just gone from U2 to Pink Floyd’s Comfortably Numb… Talk about Canberra memories… I live in the Nation’s capital for three years… 18-21 drink drugs party music sex and baseball… oh and I did attend some sort of learning place for a period of that time… I have so many mixed memories from that time and sitting in a dark room with Pink Floyd on a candle’s flickering light highlighting the posters on the walls and celling of a 3x4m cell… I had long hair (for a time) I was sad lonely happy surrounded and I was at the best place in my life to that point. I found people like me and others that delighted and repulsed. Some I lived with some I slept with some I passed in the night like a ghost. I remember we dressed up as the crow (Brandon Lee) and a bouncer wouldn’t let us cross the road to his side… I frozen in winter and I melted in summer I found bars I followed bands and even one night was a mic stand after the other one broke… Kneeling in front of a lead singer who was screaming out his lungs and strumming his guitar… I got a few free drinks from that gig alone…

Now we moved on to Guns and Roses… talk about screaming… hahahaha Music has always brought me back from the edge of darkness and loud drums, powerful guitar and rough vocals always are the best for me…

I’ll sign off before this trip down memory lane makes me remember the bad times too… ❤ to you all.

Scalzi Week

UPDATE – see below

To further celebrate Scalzi week here at Strange I present further evidence as to why it is indeed Scalzi Week with his newest titles finally being delivered to my door… I say finally in fact it was quite quick and I am very pleased with them and the special Chapbook “Waiting for Athena”. Without further ado here is me being him without the addition of Photoshop!

You too can order your copy of “Your Hate Mail Will Be Graded: A decade of Whatever, 1998-2008” from Subterranean Press or Amazon. Please note these are limited and any sold through Subterranean Press gets the free chapbook (as seen above) although Amazon is selling it for less. Enjoy!

*UPDATE* Just because John Scalzi is the most brilliantish person in the world he edited my pic to make me more Scalzi-ish… Here it is for yours and my pleasure! Thanks John… you made this even more a Scalzi week with a visit to my blog.

Injury and Books

So anyway I had a sore knee last Friday, I thought I had banged it or slightly twisted it at some point in the day. It hurt but something always hurts right? So went out to our friends place for dinner (yummy veggie pie, salad and an amazingly yummy dessert – I won’t tell cause one day I might invite you to dinner and make that dessert then it would not be a surprise and I like surprises!). After dinner and our friend putting the child to bed – we all moved to the lounge room where I borrowed an ice pack and stole two anti inflammatory drugs, that didn’t seem to stop the pain so I used Deep heat instead to burn out the (what I thought was muscular pain) – it kinda worked. So we had a great night out as I was sitting for the majority and mostly pain free eve…

Saturday we went to Sydney, Anj had a Body Shop meeting to attend so I drove to spend the day window shopping and enjoying the city as is my want. I walk around all day, going to all my favourite shops and haunts – got Anj a new tea pot (she collects them the weirder the better and if it works you win the prize [please note there is no real prize]). I also went to Galaxy Book store – a store dedicated to Sci-Fi and fantasy… my Mecca. I found John Scalzi, on a shelf – in Australia… so I bought “The Last Colony” and ” The Androids Dream” – which where priced at equivalent US price (in AUS$) – OMFG I actually got two paper backs from OS for the price of one paper back from Australia (Yes it really works that way why else do I buy from Amazon…) I was so excited to find these books I started reading TLC almost then… I waited until I got to the Pitt Street food hall and ate some lunch while I started the book… Brilliant as I thought it would be! I also needed to sit as my knee hurt like hell… But nothing I couldn’t handle… I am a Man you know! Tough… blah blah etc

So I continued to walk around all day (and stop now and then with a coffee or snack to read some more of the book…) I met Anj after she had finished and then showed her some ideas for the Wedding then we headed home. On the way to the car Anj commented on my profound limp and I pulled up my shorts at the car and checked the area – there was a huge red mark below my knee which was moving it’s way north over my knee cap and up my thigh… a long way up (further then I could pull up my shorts…). The red area was very hot and painful to touch. I said to Anj “I think I might need to see someone about this… but not in Sydney hospital or Wollongong (long story…)” So I drove back home (2.5 Horus) straight to the hospital ER.

After the Clerk got all my details and the Triage Nurse had seen me I sat down to wait… and wait… then Anj *accidental* hit my knee (OUCH!!! Seriously) so I sent her home to feed the dogs and in an attempt to avoid more pain. I waited a bit more. Then I was called in by a shortish Sri Lankan doctor (who’s name sounds like Maddog… I shall forever remember him as Dr Maddog that shall be his name… OK? Clear? Good) Dr Maddog took a look and said that it was an infection… and immediately stuck me with a cannula drain some blood for test and left the room. A nurse with a goatee (male) came in a introduced me to my antibiotics I thanked them they where nice. Peter/Paul (nurses name began with a P) afixed a drip to me and the cool cool liquid goodness began to flow into my arm… it finished in like 2 minutes. Then I waited… Dr Maddog returned with another Doctor, Dr Noname, who I think was the head Doc on that night. I was to return in the morning for X-Ray and Ultra Sound and more drugs – leave the Cannula in.

I Returned the next day, saw the clerk, saw the Triage Nurse… got an X Ray (wow this if going well) then was asked to wait for the Ultra Sound staff to arrive… I waited, waited… got called in to be Soundly Ultraed… it showed no injury to the knee (we were worried about that? apparently… then I shouldn’t have walked on it in Sydney all day? NO!!! – ops) then I was asked to wait… I saw Dr Maddog return for tonight’s shift… I saw Peter/Paul start his shift… I waited. I listened to the complaining people who where also waiting… I held back the urge to let them know I was here last night at 7:30 and I was still waiting… but some of them had seen me come in the morning… (note for the record they didn’t look sick – I did had RED KNEE/LEG and a limp and a cannula in my hand…) Dr Maddog called me, we greet each other like old friends… I got satisfaction from that… I was to get another drip and a nurse to my house twice a day with more drugs of goodness… then he left me. I waited.

Peter/Paul came in to give me drugs, we chatted – he set up the drip and left. it drained slowly. The Nurse I was to have dropped in to see me I signed the stuff and was explained the procedure for the home visit nurse.

Aside here: BRILLIANT scheme this – I “should” have taken up a bed in hospital in order to get twice daily IV drugs… but I wasn’t really sick and it was just for twice a day. Instead of being a burden to the hospital I could stay at home in comfort, get my drugs and sleep in my bed. This is the best system ever!!!

Anj visited me and left a care pack, a cheese sandwich and TLC to read… she is such lovely-ness. Then she went to rehearsals.

I finished the drip and left for home with nurse to see me the next day (I waited so long I was too late to get another dose that day)

Today (Tuesday) I got the Cannula out and a health check that says I am not cured but it is on its way out. I have a script to get oral drugs if I need too but I am just glad to not have a cannula in and be able to sleep at night!

So that is the story of my long weekend and the beginning of my holiday… well I have a few more days to go… I will miss my Hospital friends… I say Peter/Paul on his way to work again this afternoon… what great mates we became…

Just cause John did it…

Ok John did this Aspergian test… and yes before anyone says it if John did then I must follow… go jump off a bridge John I am “sure” to follow… 🙂

Here is what I got, if you want to try go here…

Your Aspie score: 22 of 200
Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 179 of 200
You are very likely neurotypical

So I am like John and Krissy neurotypical… woot!!

Monday Photo Shoot: You Look Terrible

John once again gives us things to do…

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Show off a truly bad picture of yourself. One that’s so bad it’s not actually embarrassing, just, you know, inexplicably unrepresentative. If you would like, post a contrasting good picture, so people know what you really look like.

This picture was taken a few years ago when I shaved off my beard, part way through I thought it might be nice to see what it would look like if I had a Moe… Now you know why I do not have one (except as part of a beard or goatee)

I even had some kind of weird red/copper coloour in my hair… Strange days!

Tarot and John

First up a big and hearty thanks to Constance who has just posted a tarot reading of yours truly and other regular visitors to her site. Go here and have a look. My main concern with this reading – aside from the ‘I’m not so sure I believe this’ – is that I got the same two cards that I got last time she read me. Either there is something wrong with the way that the odds work or I really should listen to what she has to say!!!

On the other hand I have been blessed with the hand of John, it seems my post on the Weekend Assignment was well received. To the point where I am in the first position on his follow up post. Woot excitement and other fun expressions. First time posting and he liked it enough to link it. My day is complete, I don’t have to work anymore because I am far to happy! Just be sure to pass that along to my boss – thanks.

I will also mention that the others on the list are worth a read although some of the tips are a little… well unnecessary for someone who does not live near bears… I am still interested in using Mountain Dew as a marinade…

We’ll I suppose seeing that you all haven’t called my boss yet I will have to go back to work. Bye