I was going to save this post until after the final act had been completely played out, but it's getting to the point where if I do it'll be a mammoth post, and the longer I sit on it, and the more reactions I get, the more it's annoying me.
Plus, if some of what has happened so far I talk about, it might make the final chapter easier, especially if I'm right about one of the people reading this blog.
This was also going to be a light-hearted, hopefully funny post. But considering my heart is pounding and I'm close to tears, it's not going to be.
The drama started when I decided I'd had enough of my current glasses making me dizzy and looking lopsided. I went to an Optometrist - a new Optometrist for me, but part of the same chain of Optometrists I'd seen before.
The first appointment went fine. Had the eye test, chose the frames and talked about getting contact lenses, which I've wanted to do for a while.
The Optometrist was very friendly, but I took that for disposition rather than anything else.
I'm seriously considering striking the phrase "Benefit of Doubt" from my vocabulary. It doesn't seem to get me very far.
The next week, I went back to place the order on the glasses, and have my contact lens "Lesson" - where I determine that I am competent enough to be able to get a contact in and out of my eye.
That took a while. A long while. During that time, the Optometrist made a few remarks I found strange. Well, mostly, they were questions: What I was doing that night, I look really pretty, I must be going out. What I was doing the next night, Was I going straight out or was I hanging around? Could still be friendly, I thought. Inappropriate, but friendly.
So I left, thinking it was a little strange, but maybe the Optometrist was just a friendly person who wasn't quite as aware of boundaries as I was (Ha!)
The next night I went to a friends new place, and I got two e-mails through the Whiz-Bang phone. One was a friend request on Facebook from a name I didn't recognise, and the other was a message from that same person. Here's the message, typos included:
"hey whats up keri?
im the bloke who gave you your contact lenses the other day! :)
i joined facebook yesterday and just discovered ur on this too
hope ur having a nice weekend the weather is just perfect
you looked really beautiful the other day. im so glad u were able to take ur contacts out eventually, lemme know how ur getting along with em
My Optometrist searched for my name on Facebook, tried to add me as a friend, and then sent me a message telling me how "beautiful I looked the other day"
(Just as an aside here - I don't think I did. I was sans make-up, about a month over-due a haircut, wearing jeans and a fairly non-descript top)
Anyway. After I'd read it, I had a slight freak-out, and put the whiz-bang phone on my friends bed and paced up and down whilst my friend read the message.
When he had, he actually did a jig. He thought it was hilarious.
As did I. Until the fact that this is my Optometrist kept intruding in my mind.
They guy puts his fingers in my eye. I consider anyone who gets near my eyes to be a Medical Professional. I don't know about anyone else, but I need to be able to have a certain level of trust with people who stick their fingers in my eyes
So, canvassing various peoples views, which ranged from Make An Official Complaint to Ignore It He's Clearly Desperate, I decided that whilst I wouldn't make a "complaint", I would tell the manager of the Optometrists that I wasn't coming back, and why.
I've just done that.
I was shaking. I still am. I don't know why, but I nearly couldn't go through with it. But I felt like I had to. What if I'm not the only woman he's contacted like this? What if the next one is really upset by it? I'm upset enough to change Optometrists, but what if the next person cops something worse?
The manager was really good. I told her he had contacted me via Facebook, and I told her what the message said. She agreed straight away that it was inappropriate, and, in her words, "invasive". And it is. My glasses have been ready since lasy Monday (Two days after I ordered them, oddly) but I've pit off picking them up until now.
Apparently he's "Not allowed to do that" and she's going to be speaking to him first thing in the morning. I don't know what will come of it, but I hope like hell I don't have to deal with anything else as a result.
Because now I am slightly concerned about this guy having my mobile number and home address. I really don't want him ringing me up, even if it's just to apologise. I feel very, very uncomfortable.
So if you ring my mobile number tomorrow from a private number or a mobile I don't recognise, I won't be answering, you'll have to leave a message
I can still see the funny side of this (because really, who gets this from their Optometrist?), but right now I'm feeling really uneasy.
I have a Flickr account. The badge is on the sidebar there, as you can see.
I was looking at the stats today, and noticed a theme.
Let's look at two photos as an example.
This photo has 20+ views:
This photo has no views:
Now, I'm not fishing for compliments here, but I know how good I do and don't look.
And Mount Solitary in the Jamison Valley in New South Wales looks a hell of a lot better than I do.
And, not blowing my own trumpet, but that photo of the Jamison Valley isn't too bad. And that photo of me is fuzzy. And I look terribly emo, focussing on the camera-steadying almost to the point of a pout-of-concentration.
So, do people find photos of people - regardless of quality - more interesting than good photos of places of natural beauty?
Basically, the State Government is seeking to pass legislation that will demand criminal checks from people undergoing IVF procedures. INCLUDING Cancer patients who are having eggs harvested and frozen.
Premier John Brumby is defending the move by stating that since access to IVF was becoming more "liberal" (read: non-discrimnatory), the Government "needed to look at what is in the best interest of the child"
So this is what will end up happening: Cancer patients who often have a very limited time frame to be able to harvest eggs (Mr Brumby, are you aware that you can't just go in and whip them out? That you need to undergo hormone treatment over a period of time to get the eggs to maturation before you retrieve them? That you can't start Cancer Treatments whilst you're doing this and vice-versa?) before undergoing Cancer treatments that may render them infertile will now potentially be faced with two options:
* Wait until the check is completed, then harvest the eggs, possibly delaying Cancer treatment * Proceed with Cancer treatment and give up the option of having a biological child.
That is, in a word, fucked.
Until the State Government passes legislation that demands that every parent of any child - regardless of whether they are conceived naturally or through infertility procedures - has their right to have children removed if they don't pass these criminal checks, this law will be discriminatory.
It discriminates against the infertile. It discriminates against same-sex partners, and worst of all - people who are undergoing life-saving treatment- all as a sop to those who don't want access to IVF broadened.
The State Government is proposing we punish every infertile couple, Cancer patient of child-bearing age, and same-sex couple in this State because of the religious objections of a few.
Isn't this exactly what Governments are supposed to be protecting us against?
Every night I catch the train home, and walk up what I’ve termed the Hill of Doom.
The Hill of Doom is pain in the arse. I wish I could get a half-decent photo that depicts exactly how doom-y the Hill of Doom is, but it’s basically a one kilometre hill that for three quarters of it rises steadily at a 45 degree angle. The last quarter is about an 80 degree angle. That last quarter, I hate it. It just pisses me off. Especially in summer.
So I try to distract myself. I walk in time to music (I don’t recommend walking up a hill like that to the beat of “My People” by The Presets, or “Mr. Brightside" by The Killers), or playing words games in my head.
Last night, I ended up constructing Haikus. As you can see, the Hill of Doom is four Haikus long:
Haiku 1: Hot man running past Give me a piggy-back, Bastard. Stupid Hill of Doom.
Haiku 2: It’s hard rubbish day Cars with trailers drive slow They do say one man’s trash...
Haiku 3: Evil Hill of Doom Up your spine I slowly crawl People in cars stare (They do)
Haiku 4: Short first line because The Haiku is restrictive Haiku really sucks
Yes, I’m a geek. You didn’t know this?
Here's a photo of the Hill of Doom. You can't see the top quarter at all, but see that car? That gives you an idea of what the first three quarters of that hill is like.
I probably owe an explanation for the photo post, don't I?
Well, I left a comment on a certain website (ICLWers - don't worry, it's not terribly relevant if you don't know what it is), and made a comment about basements making the skin an unhealthy pallor.
To which an anonymous commenter chipped in with the suggestion that I myself have an unhealthy pallor.
Here's a screenshot of the comments thread and the two photos that appeared (I don't know why) of me - the photos I posted yesterday:
I was more amused than affronted, since in one photo I'm clearly leaning against a white wall, and in the other, as has been noted, I look pretty damn pink.
So I thought, bugger it, I'll post the photos in a post and see what the world has to say. Am I unhealthily pallored? (Without asking a leading question that would influence anyone either way) And here are your responses:
Strider - "It must be their own fault/Is it a cyclist conspiracy?/should we keep them off the road after dark?/I find this amusing"
I'll update as I come across them, because so far, I see no indignation from the right that these cyclists (who, incidentally, were using a designated lane at the time) were rammed by a car-load of hoons.
Update 1: Iain - instead of focussing on the criminals in this piece, has chosen to attack me and completely misrepresent what I've said. Charming.
I read with interest this article in the Age today regarding the drug Avastin and it's use for metastatic cancer patients.
So far, it has been approved on the PBS for colon and lung cancer, but not other types of cancer.
Now, of course, there is a reason that drugs take time to appear on the PBS - it must be proven (and should be proven) that they are beneficial for the condition they are treating, but I do find one or two things about this concerning:
This first is that there doesn't seem any urgency or pressure from anyone to establish in a timely fashion if there are other applications - in other words, other cancers or conditions - that this medication could or should be subsidised for.
Secondly - and I think this is most important - there needs to be more pressure on the drug manufacturers to drop the exhorbitant prices of these medications.
The argument is that these companies must, somehow, recoup the cost of developing the drugs they market, and these costs are passed on to the consumer.
Which would be fine, if the consumer wasn't a patient. Whose life may depend on access to that drug. And as far as I'm concerned, it is despicable that anyone, anywhere would first think about cost when determining what medical treatment is most appropriate for a life-threatening illness. The very idea makes me somewhat ill.
These drug companies are not short of a dollar. They receive, on top of the disgusting amounts they charge patients for medication, grants from the government.
If anyone should be crying poor, it sure as hell isn't the drug companies.
This article about John McCain once again using songs without permission cracks me up.
First, there's the idea that using the song "My hero" doesn't make you look like an arrogant, self-involved tool.
Then there's the fact that you'd have to be an idiot to think that the Foo Fighters wouldn't crack it when they found out.
Then, and this is the bit I must stress the most - I can't think of one person, even the ones who care the least about politics - who would be swayed by the use of a song. Especially one like "My Hero".
This, ladies and gentlemen, is what happens when your media muppets start believing their own spin.
You aren't my hero, McCain, and playing a song you didn't have permission to use in an ad isn't going to change that.
Just when I thought I could recline into smugness about the resolution of my feed issues, it would appear that upgrading to the new blogger coupled with the old feed being deleted has drastically reduced the amount of subscribers. Considering the drop-off occurred not just on the same day, but in the same hour as the upgrade/deletion, I'm assuming it's that, and not a sudden drop in popularity.
Either that, or it's because I haven't posted about my hair in at least a week.
Point being, if you've come here directly and there are new posts here you haven't seen pop up in your reader, chances are you were subscribed to the old feed, which no longer exists. If you re-subscribe, you should be okay. I think.
Unless it really is about the lack of hair postings?
But, love or hate his art, he isn't trying to do anything illegal. He isn't trying to take photographs of minors without parental consent. I've yet to see one report of a minor who he's taken photos of say they feel "exploited", or hear a negative reaction of a parent or subject who has dealt with Henson.
On the contrary, we've heard from quite a few parents and minors (or former subjects who were minors at the time) saying they're upset by the fact there is a furor in their name.
So where, ladies and gentleman, is the threat? Has there been any suggestion that Henson has so much as laid a finger on any of his subjects? Have there been any complaints from either parents or former subjects saying they felt exploited, felt co-erced?
No? So there's no actual threat?
Now, I've heard the argument that schools are for education, and that no-one should be permitted to scout for talent on school grounds, regardless or what it involves, and if that's your view, I can understand it.
But, if like some, you are objecting on the grounds that this is Bill Henson, can you explain to me why, if it's clear that he always obtains parental consent?
What are you actually afraid of? What are you actually protecting your children from?
* It wasn't until it was pointed out several times to Iain that he was actually being libellous that he amended his original post to add the words "could be seen as" to the sentence "who has aided and abetted him in what could be seen as stalking and grooming". Of course, he still wouldn't admit that what he'd said was wrong, or unfair, but that's Iain for you.
There are things in the paper to blog about - the vice-presidential debate, more abortion debate drama - but honestly? It's all a bit too serious for me at the moment. So. Some Search Term Engine fun.
David Hille Girlfriend
I wish. Sadly, I am not the girlfriend of David Hille. Is he single?
Porn on Wheels
Tell me we're talking cars here.
My ex-boyfriends ex-band. I have no idea what they're doing now. Last I heard the bass player was living on a boat on the Yarra, the drummer is probably still looking for his shirt and the guitarist I wouldn't know. I do have a copy of their demos hanging around somewhere, though.
My shoe is falling off
You're either one of two people I used to sing this (made up) song* up the back of Science classes with in High School, or an idiot.
Chances child is not yours
Dude, you need to talk to your partner about this, not me. I got nothing for you. And how would this have come up on this blog?
Suss porn pics
As apposed to the non-suss porn pics?
This is my Truth, Tell me yours Keri
Fairly sure you're in the right place. Hi there.
Who designed Shane McClintock Brownlow Gown
A colour blind idiot with no sense of style or grace, but a great sense of humour.
*I believe the song went something like this:
My shoe is falling off, My shoe is falling off, La di da di da di da My Shoe is falling off
To the tune of Row, Row, Row your boat.
There were three of us, and we sang it in a round. We were really, really annoying.
I'm trying, really hard, to write the next economics post (I promised Toaf. Shut up) but every time I start, another piece of the world economy twists out of all recognition and I have to re-write the whole thing.
So here it is in short until I get a chance to finish it:
Derivatives are bad. They mitigate risk on paper, but the risk doesn't go away. If it was an accounting practice, you'd get done for it.
**Edit** To the person who got here via the search the term "No-Doc Loans Idiotic":
Born in Wales, exported to Australia, lived here for fifteen years. Not good at talking about myself except on a blog. Making it my goal to reach the 1200 character limit, but failing miserably, because I keep getting distracted by the fake tan I'm experimenting with on the back of my hands.