I really needed this – not

My Win7 PC is giving every sign of karking.

Of course it can be saved  … but my IT guru, Slava, is always flat out like a lizard drinking; so only the gods know when he will find time to come and do a Lazarus number on it.

This is me on the old WinXP PC – first time I’ve ever tried this.

I have yet to execute the ‘new’ blog; but I shall be doing it forth (or fifth) with.

You may all make votive offerings for me, yes …?


Addendum: guess what ? Oh, you’re there ahead of me. Goodonyer. Yes, having been (with unqualified joy !) informed by SMS that Slava will come later today, I decided to have another go around 8:30. Fired up as if there had never been anything wrong, the little ****er ! I even went through a re-start, just to be sure – no bloody worries !

He’s still going to come and check things though …

The man who took my sub-title

No Australian needs to have the identity of David Stratton explained … not unless s/he’s been Rip Van Winkle, Aussie style, over the last nearly 30 years.

Briefly, my publishers were so delighted to receive into their hands David’s brief review of approbation of Atlmd  (David was a friend of Chic’s and mine, and I felt no compunction in asking him to read/review it), that they decided instantly to put it on the front cover. You will observe it without difficulty on the image there …

They believed it would be a strong selling-point. That belief was so strong that they put all their trust in the quote and decided nothing else was needed. Like, for instance, a requirement for the distributors – the almost entirely useless Penguin distribution arm called United Book Distributors, or UBD – to actually have the bookshops they sold it into do more than merely put a copy or two on the shelves for ‘Biography and Memoir’ … But there I go again.


Throughout the years of writing the book, and of joining with Georgia in structurally editing it, It was called as you see in this blog’s new title and tag:

And then like my dreams:
still and moving pictures

The subtitle was of immense meaning to me, summoning, as it does, so important a theme – the Stillsman I loved who is gone, and the working arena he loved so much.

When the design was sent to me by email, I found my beloved subtitle had been replaced by the succinct phrase “{a memoir}”. Nothing to be done; as David’s recommendation took up the rest of the space. And in truth, I absolutely loved the cover (and still do) … if only if weren’t for that loss …

The linked article lets you know, you non-Aussies, just who David Stratton is. And since it is you who have made by far the largest number of purchases of the book, you might even be interested to learn of him ! He is, btw, an absolutely lovely man; and he’s going to be very much missed from our screens.

Import problems

(1) Importing the entire archives of something like 495 posts ( ! ) resulted, for inexplicable reasons, in a few of them returning to the fold AS DRAFTS. Words fail.

No they don’t !

I had to re-publish them in order to keep them, or lose ‘em. And the one called “Those poor people”, which many of you are reading, is dated 23rd October 2013 for the simple reason that such was its original publication date ! I wish you to know that I do not feel fazed by WP any more. Except when it does infuriating things like this.

Anyone feeling kind will check again whenever is your tomorrow and see if that particular post is still showing on the front page; and if it isn’t, it’s because it’s sort of gone back to where it should be ! Jesus.

(2) Lost the ‘Like’s again. FMD ! – so irritating ! And not even on all of the re-imports – on a select group, between which I can find zero to explain why they are those chosen.

[grump grump]

You might actually be pleased, at this end …

I’ve just posted this on the other site, and you should know about it pronto, those of you who have been generous enough to double up with your follows …

Here, it means very little: there it means a good deal – mostly allied with irritation, I believe.     :-(

I’d be incredibly grateful for input on this thinking, regardless of foul language.


Only one way to say this

You’ll want to kill me, I know.


And then, having given a moment or two to wondering which method you’ll employ – (1) the slowest and most painful possible, (2) the goriest, or (3) the most public – you will in all likelihood shrug, say something like “She’s at it again … mad as a cut snake, the woman is !” and wander off whistling with your hands in your pockets, determined to empty your minds of me forthwith. AND I WOULDN’T BLAME YOU.

I cannot keep up. Three blogsites (even if one’s static, it’s that one needing the most work) ???

Hands up how many of you said to yourselves “It’s only a matter of time: the silly old fart is going to have to admit defeat ere long …” ?

You are bloody smartarses. And you were entirely correct: I can’t do it.

I must revert to my original situation, regardless of lack of specialisation. I shall insert more information about the book/purchase/etc. back into the sidebar, and see what else can be done to emphasise the site’s porpoise (you remember which one it was, don’t you ?!) …

Now to decide which theme to use. I REALLY LIKE this one; and I suspect I am somewhat jaundiced re the one the main site is currently exhibiting. And anyone who cares to offer an opinion is very welcome to give it !

Addendum: as you see (if you have a good memory, that is), I’ve now imported the posts from the ‘new’ site, in preparation for closing it down.

Did you think you were going potty? – don’t worry, it’s only me who is …


I follow both blogs of a Kiwi friend called Su: she did long since what I have only just come to do, and has two blogs so as to be able to have an everyday one (like this) and another for her fixation (like my original).

I also follow, as everyone knows, the blog of a friend down in Victoria called Christine.

OK; now as to why I mention these two women in the one post, it’s because they’re both fascinated with genealogy. I’m tempted to say that Su Leslie has the wider knowledge base, but I’m far from sure because Christine Randall seems to be getting deeper and deeper into it all by the day. And besides, neither of ‘em has the slightest interest in competing – with each other or with anyone else. They just love their topic, and that’s that.

I told Su the other day that her research – about which she readily posts (no selfish hoarding of methodology !) – I find so wonderful that I felt I must post about it. Anyone who has an interest in the construction of his/her family tree should visit “Shaking the Tree”; it will both fascinate and amaze you !

from today’s Comments

As for Christine, consider what’s on the left and see if you can’t work out what motivated me regarding her !

Nearly fell off my chair !!!

My paternal grandfather was a lawyer; and together with two contemporaries and colleagues started up a law practice in Perth. But I have no idea when, nor whether it was in fact begun there, or in some other city and eventually moved.

In fact, I know absolutely nothing of the generation before my parents, other than what I’ve just told you re my father’s side, and the fact that my maternal grandfather was a Health Inspector – and I think it was in the W.A. Goldfields area … certainly my mama was born in Collie.

I don’t have the faintest idea why they never spoke to us of their prior generations; and I can only think that my younger sister has the family photograph albums. Dunno about that, either !

In fact, as you can see, I know virtually nothing at all about my parents’ families, Dunphy or Rossiter. I feel the lack.

In the wee small hours

Last night I was awoken, very abruptly, by choking.

Have you ever experienced that ? – in your sleep done … something ! that meant some saliva went down your windpipe ? When you’re awake and upright, all it takes is an opening of the mouth during conversation and a too-quick sucking in of breath to speak, and lo ! – for whatever reason, you’ve also sucked in something tangible … and you have to cough like mad to rid your windpipe of it and be able to breathe again.



I’ve done the choking-in-the-night only once before: it was when Stringer and I were staying at La Nuova Jera, the little hotel in Tuscany that I posted about in Paula’s non-challenge (on the other site) of a week or two back. As I said, the comune of Jera is tiny; so you will comprehend that the depths of the night mean, without exception, total silence everywhere. No dogs bark because no-one is moving around. And of course there are no vehicles breaking the absolute peace.

I don’t know when La Nuova Jera was built, but it wasn’t constructed as a hotel; and its internal walls and floors are not terribly thick.

So … at somewhere around 2:30am one week-night in mid-September 2000, I did a violent awakening-because-of-coughing in our room on the first floor, which was fairly close to being directly above the room of Sig. e Sig.ra, our hosts. There was no way I wouldn’t have awoken them almost as violently as I did myself and Chic, of course. This was bad enough; but the business of trying to rid myself of the stuff I’d sucked in went on for a VERY long time – something like an hour. At least ! Poor Chic … he kept telling me it didn’t matter, every time I apologised when I was able to (and then he somewhat irritably kept telling me to STOP APOLOGISING !) …

Eventually the airway was cleared; but what followed was even worse – the need to clear my throat roughly every 30 seconds.     :-(

And that went on until light had begun to seep in around the curtains, at which point I must’ve gone to sleep – along with everyone else within the building. No-one ever said anything about it, but I was glad that we were leaving the following day: my embarrassment levels were astronomical. Let’s face it: when someone prevents you from sleeping for a very, very long time, you loathe ‘em, right ? – you don’t give a rat’s (_|_) that they didn’t MEAN to, and were not able to stop doing it.

So that’s what happened to me at 3am this-morning; happily, it wasn’t as terrible an attack, and I coughed for only about half an hour. I was awful grumpy, though, and muttered direly to Lui as I sat on the loo (might as well do something now I was awake) that It Wasn’t Fair. The subsequent throat-clearing went on for a bit, but not frightfully long; and I reawoke under normal circumstances – Lui scratching on my bedroom door – after 5.

The one thing of note re comparing the two incidents was that in Jera, all those years ago, I was terrified. Even in the company of my beloved husband, out of whose fundament I believed the sun to shine, I was really frightened. And this-morning, entirely alone, I wasn’t in the least bit afraid.

And here’s the point of this entire post: I’ve come to the conclusion that one’s fears are in some way associated with love. I mean that I suffered from fear of flying – at varying levels, most of which could be handled, but it was in truth there all the time – BECAUSE Chic was there. And I was afraid that night so long ago for the same reason.

In other words, I think it very possible that most of my fear was of leaving him alone and without me …

From my Probus talk

In early August, I travelled out to a suburb unknown to give my Atlmd talk to a Probus group.  It was always a bit of a puzzle to me that I had been asked to do so; as the young woman who mans the organization’s front desk refused point-blank to provide me with the names of people who arrange for speakers, which meant that Delores Munn had actually found me in the list of volunteer speakers and made contact. Why no-one else has ever done so is a constant reminder of my unimportance in the scheme of things. Alas.     :-(

Among the 50 or so people comprising the audience was a man with a camera who is the Group’s photographer, and he snapped me with Delores and on my own with the book.

Original single

Original single

Original 2S

Original 2S

You will understand my dismay at seeing what Del posted to me, folded over, the other day …

So I was bold enough to post on the other site to the effect that I would be truly grateful if someone felt kind enough to see what s/he could to by way of image enhancement, as I’d spent a fruitless day trying to make the photos look better; and my friend Pike12 came to my rescue. Lynne also offered, but I didn’t have an email address to send the originals to; and bloody Rosenberger professed himself willing to have a go, but his end product turned out to be … ahh … humorous, the bastard !     [grin]

Here’s what Pike managed to get out of the single:

How did she DO that ?

Improvement, eh ?

And the 2S of me with Del has been similiarly rendered viewable – by what means, I know not ! But Pike 12 is a professional photog., and prepares her own shots for press use; so her amazing skills she takes for granted !

Talk about image enhancement ...

Talk about image enhancement …

I would offer Del these improved versions of the shots for their Group’s use, but for the fact that none of them is on the ‘Net. I find this somewhat amazing, but it’s none of my business. Certainly, the Group has a list of activities as long as your arm and they do a lot of good things for charity; so I’m not pointing the finger in any way. It’s just so I’m so used to being able to send and receive stuff online that it kind of rocks me back on my heels when I can’t.

ANYWAY ! This post is my record (and yours, you lucky things !) of my sole appearance at a Probus club to talk about the writing of “Atlmd”. The audience gave every appearance of interest and enthusiasm; but I feel quite sure it’s going to be the only time M-R is seen among that body of retirees. Pity.

Image editing challenge

And it’s for anyone who’s feeling kind … like, REALLY kind.      :-|

I received by snail mail two photographs (and I mean physical photos, you remember them ?) in a normal-size envelope. They’d been folded over for reasons I don’t comprehend.

They’re shots taken at the only Probus talk I’ve given – which means, to be brutal, the only one I’ve been asked to give. It went down really well, and I enjoyed it mightily.

Before I harangued the 50-odd audience, I was asked to have my photo taken with the lady who’s the organiser of the talkers, and then one was taken of me with The Book.

Seldom if ever have I seen anything quite like these photos. Words totally fail me. You may remember my claiming that I was the worst taker of continuity shots of all times ? – had this photog. ever done my job, he would’ve beaten me by a country mile. Absolutely nothing can be done with ‘em as they are, basically. And I’ve spent most of the day trying to get ‘em usable, unsuccessfully.

So you|se who fancy yourselves with scanned photos and an image editor, what would you say to have a go at these ?

Please ?

If anyone has time and/or inclination, let me know by email and I’ll send ‘em as attachments. I scanned ‘em at 300dpi, hoping it might make ‘em better; but stand ready to re-scan at any other screen res. ordered …

Addendum: I have volunteers ! Amazing: the world is a very nice place.      :-D

Addendum 2: The other site now contains a post all about the photos, and their resurrection thanks to Pike12.

Aussie architectural chutzpah

Here’s something you don’t see every day – a blogsite that’s actually a hotel’s website.

By that I mean it’s an interface for booking purposes: if you browse around it, you’ll see …

But this particular link takes you to that to which I draw your attention – a quite normal kind of post, really … nothing like the kind of page you find on a hotel website, ordinarily.

March Studio is completely off-the-wall, to my way of thinking.

And totally talented.