Thursday, 31 July 2008

Not-So-Beautiful Collision

Last Monday my IRL and online selves collided in a scream of broken glass and twisted metal and dirty looks.

My lecturer for my Digital Publishing class decides to cover Web 2.0 aggregator thingies like digg and twitter. (I put those two together because although they are vastly different in the way they are used they often fill the same function).

'Yay!' I exclaim. I love twitter. It's a really handy thing to add 'spur of the moment' flavour to blogging and to help keep me in touch with my friends.

Then he put up my twitter profile for everyone to see. I thought that would be okay. In my mind I'm always aware that anything I put online is available for a n y o n e to see. I guess if each and every one of those people found it individually it would have been different. As a whole class it was it was kind of embarrassing.

Not unbearably embarrasing, but enough to make me look like I "have no life". Also my profile picture didn't help. I have a life. I sometimes tweet the things I do so my friends can share in it. What's wrong with that?

Anyway, now I am 'that guy' in the class. It's a bit of an awkward position to be in, particularly when I can't contain my enthusiasm for all things webby. I guess this was to be expected though. That's just what happens when you put stuff on the internet.

You won't be laughing once I'm rolling in HYPOTHETICAL INTERNET MONEH!!!

(ooooh Southpark ftw)

Wednesday, 30 July 2008


My university recently had to renovate their library because of issues with humidity and mould in the law section. In the process of expanding the library to fix the problem, they remodelled the lower floor and made it open plan. I think it is ingenious and want to live there forever.

Or, well, at least until the ultra-modern décor horribly dates and becomes the new (less groovy) 60s (AKA the 70s? Thoughts please).

One of the brilliant features of the library is what I assume is a 'brainstorming corner' or something. Anyway, there is a wall made of whiteboards with whiteboard markers right there for anyone to use. The possibilities are mind-boggling.

We decided to start a Wikipedia parody:

Well when you think about it a whiteboard just sitting in a public place with accompanying markers is a wiki. It's just screaming to be covered in crude drawings of penises and jokes about Oscar Wilde.

Of course, instead of the penises, we used web memes - mostly from XKCD.

Here is the final text of what we left. We're hoping that people will get the joke and keep adding to it.

If you can't read it then clicking on the picture will embiggen it. If you really can't read it you can leave a comment and I could potentially email a really big version to you (offer expires once this post is a month old).

Also welcome to anyone who might be visiting from the Griffith games club (or whatever you're called). Tom reckoned he would give you guys a link or something. So anyway - hi!

Monday, 28 July 2008

Independant Dreams

Today I'm at uni. Actually by the time you read this I will probably (definitely?) be in class as you read. This is due to the wonders of scheduled posting, which I love like a firstborn.

Yesterday I added yet more fuel to my wallet rapist at a super-low price of 144.9 cents per litre.

I know; suck it southern states. I have a government that likes me.

Still, shelling out $15 for about 10 litres of fuel isn't what I call ideal. I don't really want buy fuel at all, but I have to if I want to go to uni. There is no public transport where I live, because I live in the suburb of Hickville, Gold Coast.

I dream of living closer in town, perhaps in my own apartment (with a bus stop around the corner). It makes me smile. I could have guests! Guests would come and visit me and I would entertain them!

They would say: "Oh Rohan I love what you have done with your apartment."

And I would say: "Yes! Would you like a cup of tea?!"

Then they would say: "No thanks. I'll just have water."

I shall reply: "But I have tea! Tea right here! IT IS TRADITIONAL THAT I OFFER YOU TEA!"

Their response: "One sugar."

My house would be like a giant Flair board! I could put whatever I pleased in the house! Then I could invite people in to look at the house! Er, I mean, apartment.

I don't want a house. I want to be trendy and live in a box. A box elevated above the little people below.

Of course, this is ignoring the fact that I would have to pay rent for the house apartment. Rent equalling more than I'm currently paying for fuel.

This depresses me.

Roll on $8 a litre I say. Then (through twisty environmental economics) I could afford to live in a house apartment.

Look forward to me blogging incessently about uni for the next five months. It becomes my entire world.

Apartment picture by huxleyesque

Sunday, 27 July 2008

World Youth Day 2008 (WYD08) Part 3

Don't forget this is Part 3! Check out Part 1 and Part 2.

Day 3

We slept in 'till about 10 and then set off to say hi to bigxminh (Min) and aznfreak87 (Queenie). We subsequently got lost on Sydney's public transport system and were an hour late to our little meeting.

We spent about two hours or so talking, and I was feeling very unedited. I always feel this way when I meet a YouTuber for the first time. Like I'm worried the 'IRL me' doesn't match up to the 'online me'. It was lovely though. We had a great time.

After saying goodbye to them (which was sad) we took the train into the city. We were doing this really half-arsed effort to find the Lindt Café and in doing so stumbled across the Apple Store. While there I decided to do an Apple Store video but when I logged in I discovered riverbasil (Nick) and englishteaboy (Steve) had already uploaded one two hours beforehand!

I was spewing that I'd missed them (especially when I had forgotten to call Nick the day before after I got my credit) so I uploaded my video. Not two minutes later who should come and say hi? Steve and Nick. Turns out they were upstairs, still in the store.

We all walked around together after that. We checked out the building where they film Sunrise and Seven News (it has glass walls so you can see them do it). Unfortunately it wasn't being used at the time because the news was being broadcase live from Randwick Racecourse where the final Mass was to be held the next day.

Still, while we were there we met the Pope and she was very nice! She even knighted Nick (even though we were all pretty sure Popes don't knight people). Nick is now 'Sir Riverbasil' on all formal correspondence.

After that excitement we were all feeling pretty hungry. We took the train to New Town (I think?) where we had a Thai dinner. I thought it was lovely, but Nick found a sliver of beef in his vegetarian meal. Afterward we bought gelato, walked around a bit and took the train back. Then we said our goodbyes.

From Central Station Jacinta, Ellen and I all got hopelessly (and stupidly) lost. We could have caught a bus right from Central, but instead we walked around in circles for ages only for the bus to drive right back the way we came. We saw a big group of people dressed as Smurfs though, so I guess it was worth it. We'd had dinner really early, so we had heaps of time to hang out in Hendra and Marshella's apartment (where we were staying).

There will be one final Part 4, but not for a little bit. I don't want to over-Pope you!

World Youth Day 2008 (WYD08) Part 2

See?! I told you I would do it! You thought it was just another lie, but you were wrong.

Don't forget that there is a Part 1! You can find it and read all about the first day. Please do; the first day was jam-packed.

Day 2

I ran out of phone credit. It was all the tweets and calling chrisontv88 from the night before. Thus, I couldn't tweet all day and I also couldn't call Azukar (Joel) to tell him where we were. We went traipsing around Sydney and took some rediculously Asian pictures in a photobooth which actually spoke at us in Japanese. (The one on the side is Jacinta's picture. I'll get a copy of mine up soon!)

After going to the markets and trying on (but ultimately not purchasing) some hats, I got my hands on some credit. I phoned Az and told him where we were. He had just got on the train to go back home, but he (thankfully!) got off and turned around again to see us. We met up in this futuristic-70s-style Asian-type restaurant called PoPoRo where you ordered your meals from computers. There was a bug in my salad, but I didn't mind.

Then we saw The Dark Knight. Due to my fear of clowns I squirmed and jumped my way all the way through this film. It was fantastic though. Utterly.

Pretty soon though, Darling Harbour called. We ended up back at the Watershed bar. Joel helpfully suggested we all have an absinthe shot to start off with and we giddily agreed.

After a few more drinks we spied some monks/priests wandering around (at 1 in the morning?!). Of course we had our photo taken with them.

I believe that there is Brother Paul, but it could also be Father Dominic. I forgot which was which.

These posts are always too long. Part three will go up in two hours. How do I know? I just know. I can see into the future.

Saturday, 26 July 2008

Internet Liar

I am a filthy, dirty liar. Don't ever trust a word I say becuase I am just lying to you.

Also you wouldn't believe the enormity of the search required to find out how to correctly spell "liar" and "lying". Why oh why does the English language have to be wonderful and/but difficult?! It's like a kitten that's really cute and clever but then JUMPS OUT OF THE CURTAINS AND SCRATCHES YOUR FACE OFF!

You're all: "bad kitten! I hate this kitten! What a... oh look he is using the litterbox!"

Then, of course, you take a photo and caption it with: DEEP BREFF! SKAWEEEEEEZE!

Why am I such a filthy, dirty liar? Well I'm not. Not normally. IRL I'm amazingly honest. If I say I'm going to do something, then you can pretty much rely on me to do it (most of the time).

But online! Oh how online! I become the lowest of the low! If I say I'll make lots of videos during the holidays, you can bet aunt Bessie's dentures that I won't make a video for a good long three weeks (I have reasons, but they are lame).

Also if I say I'm going to finish my World Youth Day posts really fast, that's a sure sign I'm going to take two days off from the internet.

I've been watching television.

I know. I'm as shocked as you are.

Not that I think you were all really hanging out to see what I did in Sydney (besides a surprising amount of absinthe... oh wait, did I say that out loud? I'm obviously lying. Obviously.) The WYD posts are more for me than they are for you. So are my videos for that matter. If I let you down, I'm letting me down. I don't like to be let down. It makes me sad.

As any good psycho-doctor will tell you, lying to yourself is the worst kind of lying; and I am obviously lying to myslef when I say these things. There is only one thing to do.

I am going to fix this.

Like, seriously. That's no lie.

Tuesday, 22 July 2008

World Youth Day 2008 (WYD08) Part 1

As you may know, last week I went to World Youth Day down in Sydney, New South Wales. Even though I was only there for the last four days I had a brilliant time! Every day was fantastic and I got to meet up with a lot of my friends who I don't see very often. I also made one or two new ones!

Day 1

After a ridiculously early start, my friends Jacinta, Ellen and I arrived in Sydney and were greeted by our friend Hendra and his wife Marshella. While waiting for the bus we saw our first pilgrims. I love the pilgrims. I really miss them now I'm home. We didn't do much during the day because we were all so tired - particularly me, who didn't sleep the night before. We did go out for lunch at a local shopping centre though, where we saw more pilgrims. There were seriously pilgrims everywhere; they were all so excited and open and happy.

That night though (after a nanna nap in the afternoon) we went down to Darling Harbour. It was completely, utterly the most amazing thing I've ever seen. Jacinta and Ellen went to see Phantom of the Opera while I met up with riverbasil (Nick) and the THOUSANDS UPON THOUSANDS OF PILGRIMS. Seriously they were all in Darling Harbour for some free concerts that were on. There was literally dancing in the streets. There were pilgrims flowing in from all parts of the city for a solid five hours.

Unfortunately I can't prove any of this right now because I forgot my camera that night (Stupid! Stupid!). I'll have to get my friends' pictures and show you later. For now, here is a picture of three nuns wearing official World Youth Day backpacks:

Nick and I wandered around awestruck for the first bit, grabbed dinner, then hit the concerts. I was wrecked by the time he went home, but I stayed around waiting for Jacinta and Ellen to finish with Phantom. When they got back we decided to go to the Watershed bar for a quick drink. While there we bumped into another Gold Coast girl also named Jacinta. It turns out she hangs out around the same places we do here in Queensland. We ended up hanging around her and her friends from one of the Catholic churches on the GC for a couple of hours.

It was really great to meet some new people and make some new friends, but soon we were all exhausted and caught the bus back to Hendra's place.

It looks like this entry is getting far too long, so I'm going to cut my retelling into two or three bits. They won't be long in the coming!

Saturday, 12 July 2008

Mamma Mia

Yesterday I went to see Mamma Mia with my friends Ellen and Jacinta. I'm partly writing this blog entry to further infuriate John Lacey (who detests ABBA), but also because I have stories and a bit of a review-ishy thing. So, on to the stories!

As you might expect from a musical, there is lots of singing. They're singing ABBA like it's their job (and by all accounts, it is their job) and they sing it well. Only thing is, some things that are accepted as part of a stage production come off as incredibly corny on the screen.

For example, when the chorus come dong pirouettes through a window in the middle of a serious conversation so they can sing a song, or like in one scene where fifteen men in snorkels and flippers suddenly burst from the ocean when the bride-and-groom-to-be are confessing their love for each other. The snorkel-men dance passionately and then jump back into the ocean. I honestly can't remember what became of those snorkel-men.

I didn't mind this. I thought this was very funny. But there's no way you could take this movie seriously... or could you?

Enter the lady sitting two seats down from me; tissues out and weeping profusely. In between sniffles and nose-blows she would quietly sing the songs in a haggard voice with all the soul she could muster. 

"Dancing Queen! *snif!* Young and sweet! *SNIF!* Seventeen!"

She would usually cry hardest in the parts my friends and I were laughing in. This movie had her hook, line and sinker.

Then, at the end of the movie, the lights went up and the three of us looked around at the other faces in the cinema. We were the only ones under 40. Not even that there were more older people than there were younger people - we were the only ones and it was school holidays!

Still, I thought it was pretty good, although not as good as, say, Hairspray (although some would disagree). I think Hairspray does the 'musical movie' thing a bit better - not as corny. Then again, it is ABBA we're talking about. It might be impossible to do a non-corny version of Mamma Mia. Best to just enjoy it for what it is then; a bit of fun.

Thursday, 10 July 2008

Facebook Jealousy – Librarian's Son

A childhood friend who lived around the corner and attended my primary school when I lived in Darwin has added me on Facebook. He has a motorbike and a girlfriend. I seriously do not measure up.This guy probably still thinks of me as the librarian's son.

Now I have to try and make myself look cool.

What if I changed my profile pic? Something like this?

Is that even cool? I look slightly disturbed. Like, you caught me picking my nose!

Oh who am I kidding? I cannot make this look cool:

The "Your ≠ You're" especially screams 'librarian's son!' So does the "Careful, you may end up in my novel" one. Oh and the one of the girl carrying the books and the one with the interrobang (and the fact that I know what an interrobang is) and all the Harry Potter ones and even the one with the coffee that says "You're my bitch!" could have a librarian-y kind of feel to it in light of all the others.

I will never escape the 'librarian's son' label. Ever. Like, ever-ever. I bet it will even be written in the biography section of all my books. There'll be a picture of me looking very bookish and authorly and underneath it the biography will start: "The son of a librarian, Rohan has..."

It's like if I don't particularly pay attention to how I dress before I go out and about. Inevitably I'm wearing what I call my 'Philosophy Tutor' jumper when I bump into someone I know from school. Also, I will not have done my hair, so it will be flat and nerdy-looking. The conversation usually goes:

Them: "Oh hey! Oh my god it's Rohan!"

Me: "Yeah hi, how are you?"

Them: "Good! So, like, what are you up to? Are you at uni?"

Me: "Yep I'm studying, um, writing–"

Them: "Ha! Good on–"

Me: "AND digital video!"

Them: (Disappointed) "Oh yeah. Awesome so... how's your dad?"

 It's about now I usually arch an eyebrow and give an answer clear enough so they know he's still kicking, but vague enough so they won't ask any further. Afterward I realise that an arched eyebrow is one of the trademarks of a stereotypical librarian, and that there is no escape.


The Nerdfighter Blurbing Book Club is on again and this time around we're supposed to read Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger. I dutifully borrowed the book from my library about a week ago and read half of it on the first day... and I didn't read too much more after that.

It's beautifully written, but the story is slow slow slow. Also the protagonist is really negative about everything. I'm going to finish it. I really am. I'm just... reading another book in-between *innocent face*.

The same day I got Catcher I also got Maureen Johnson's Devilish. Although I didn't enjoy Thirteen Little Blue Envelopes (sorry Maureen) I thought I should give her books another try because I enjoy her blog so very very much.

The chapters in Devilish are short, and reading them is like eating tasty snacks - you don't realise how much you're eating because each piece is bite-size. Turns out I read half the book in the first sitting and didn't even realise. It's lots of fun. I'm enjoying it very much.

Nothing overly super-exciting has happened so far, but I know it's building up to something. There has been enough intrigue to hold my attention anyway. Certain elements are weaving together, and more and more people with red hair are appearing. I know this means something.

So yay. After I finish those I'm going to go back and read Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut. It's a book we were supposed to be reading for the Blurbing Book Club a while ago but I never got around to it.

Looking through the book archives of this blog I remembered I was supposed to be reading the Harry Potter series as well. It completely slipped my mind. Well I'll get on with that in due course, but for now I'll shelve the Boy Wizard - yet again.

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Transport Enthusiast

Tonight I made an amazing, unbelievable discovery on YouTube. I am seriously mega-excited about it. A guy, mathew122, subscribed to me and a few other friends. I always check out who subscribes to me - make sure they're not creepy people.

Mathew's videos immediately caught my interest. Buses. Only buses. Then I checked his subscriptions/subscribers - more people with bus videos!

My friend Rob actually talked to Mathew on MSN and discovered he also has a website: ACT Bus.

I have discovered the secret bus-loving community on YouTube!

You have no idea how thrilled I am to find these people. I don't understand the appeal, but I love love LOVE that there are people in the world who love buses. I'm not making fun; it (somehow) gives me hope for humanity.

The news has been so depressing lately. It's nice to know that there are people out there who aren't afraid to get excited about buses. It's something that could so easily be made fun of and - seeing as I'm a person who gets excited about things other people are completely un-enthused by - I can actually relate.

I think it's fantastic that people who love buses have found a way to form a community online. I can imagine that it's difficult for others who do not love buses to understand how somebody can take such detailed interest in something as commonplace as a bus. In fact, I don't understand it myself. To me it's just a bus. But seriously, the knowledge that the transport enthusiast community exists gives me no small amount of joy.

All the transport enthusiasts out there should become Bus Nerdfighters straight away. They are already amazingly awesome and would fit right in.

Seriously - buses!


Sunday, 6 July 2008

The Circus, and Other Freaky-Arse Things

I was talking to my friend Jacinta the other night. She was telling me a story about how her boss used to be in the circus. I got rather excited about it. More excited than other people would have been anyway.

My whole life, I'm not kidding, I have wanted to be in the circus. I don't know when the desire to be in the circus started. I don't even know what I wanted to do in the circus - I just wanted to live in a freaking tent and travel around a lot.

People assume we desire things for reasons that make sense. This is bollocks.

You know why?

I could never live in a circus, no matter how much I wanted to, because I am utterly and inexplicably afraid of clowns. They genuinely give me the willies like nothing else (except, perhaps, people in mascot suits). I mean, I don't get all nervous and sweaty if I think about a clown, but if an actual clown is standing around in my presence I get really fidgety and have to leave.

I wasn't always afraid of clowns (thus my desire to live amongst them). It was that stupid, bloody episode of 'Round the Twist where the family dress their scarecrow up in an old clown costume they found in a chest they dragged out of the ocean. The scarecrow goes all psycho and chases Linda around and around the lighthouse, bashing doors down and laughing manically.

I don't think I ever truly recovered from the nightmares that episode inspired. Back then it was freakier then Silence of the Lambs - I kid you not. It doesn't even help that it turns out the scarecrow/clown is just lonely for the girl-clown he once loved (whose clothes Linda turns out to be wearing).

Also clowns are serial killers! Why does nobody realise this?!

To be honest, the circus is like my nightmare. It's made of wonderful things mixed in with terrible freaky things. That's even worse than terrible freaky things on their own. I love the circus, and my desire to live in one has never truly left me, but only God knows why.

Writing this blog entry has freaked me the hell out. I bet you never knew I was an anxious person.

I need to go to bed, but first I'm going to fill my mind with happy things.

Friday, 4 July 2008

1000 is the Number of the Week

It has come to my attention that recently all my previous posts have been about books. I think it's obvious what's going on here - the librarians are brainwashing me. I've lived with one my whole life and it's only now I've realised what's been going on this whole time; sneaky bookish hoodlums.

Not this time though. No! Today I'm going to talk about YouTube (for...for a change...*ahem*).

Today, according to Chris, I got a penis enlargement. Yes that's right; I managed to scrounge together 1000 people from the internet and convince them to click on the little yellow button that says 'subscribe'.

It gives me 'Tube cred donchaknow?

It's pretty cool, but I don't think it will change the way I make videos. I think I leeched most of these people anyway. I'm not sure how far I would be right now if it weren't for a few rather very special people who gave me exposure.

Most people make a big video where they do something really tedious and time-consuming for each of their subscribers to celebrate reaching a milestone. Not me though, I have enough trouble updating my videos without adding any extra difficulties like making sure that subscriber's name is 'twilitelvr' and not 'twilightlvr'. Ugh! So this blog post is going to have to do.

This part of the post is where I sit and reminisce about the heady days of having 273 subscribers and my lofty goal of reaching 366.

The internet is so efficient. Reminiscing can be done in just a click. I love living in the future.

Also! Less exciting news - I did my 1000th update on Twitter today. I love that site just as much now as I did at the start. It brings me endless giggles.

OMG! Just as I was writing out this entry an email came in:

I'm going to become a partner! My banner is going to be super-pretty; you can bet on that.

Thanks YouTube, and thankyou to everyone who watches me there =D