$3 Million Powerball winner in Jabiru NT

March 26th, 2006

Somebody is probably walking around Kakadu National Park with a three million dollar winning lottery ticket. I suppose it could have been bought by a tourist passing through the small town of Jabiru – where the ticket was sold from the local newsagency – but having lived in and around Jabiru in the 1990s I’d like to think it’s someone local. The story in full HERE.

The photo is of a typical sunset at Ubirr – my old backyard – about 40 kms from Jabiru

***UPDATE*** The winner turns out to be a worker at the Ranger Uranium mine, as reported HERE.


Death by Lego

March 18th, 2006

Someone who shares my bizarre, twisted sense of humour has posted this photoset on Flickr under the title “The Lego Suicides.” A warning: some of these images may offend (especially if you can’t stand the sight of Lego).

In Coffee/Dung News . . .

March 14th, 2006

David Sharrock – Ireland correspondent for The Times – reports that for the first time in 288 years coffee dealers in that country will once again be able to legally sell coffee mixed with sheep dung as a filler:

WITH the stroke of a legislative pen, the Irish Republic intends to shrug off centuries of colonial rule when it abolishes thousands of bizarre laws dating back to the first English invasion. . . . Among those laws about to be consigned to history is . . . the Adulteration Of Coffee Act 1718 (which) made it illegal to debase coffee for profit. Among the substances used by unscrupulous traders to “pad out” the sacks of coffee was ground-up sheep dung. As coffee went out of fashion, a similar law was introduced covering tea — the Adulteration of Tea Act 1776 . . .

Read the full article from timesonline.co.uk

Überpet Parade

March 10th, 2006

OK. It begins. The Robskee Blog Überpet Parade. I will be updating this section with your photos as you send them through. Take the concept laterally if you like and send in pics of pet hates, pet loves . . .

First up we have Izzy and Indi. They live with K and are big personalities. There you can see a photo of K snapped in the middle of a clean & jerk with Indi . . .

Next is Oscar, who belongs to Andrea. This pic was taken the day after Oscar’s annual de-furring. Andrea writes:

Love the “How could you?” look, cleverly combined with the “I hate you, I’m never going to speak to you again” look.

Not happy, Jan!

And of course, here’s our two. Poor Ziggy: he’s working on the misguided assumption it’s a simple territorial dispute, while Scout knows it’s psychological warfare.

Fresh in from the tropics are these shots of Storm:

That’s F doing Storm’s body-painting while Dad J supervises, remarkably paint-splatter free.

I can’t remember who it was that first pointed out: “Dogs have owners, cats have staff” . . . How true it is. Here is Frank, in two of her many guises. She has a full-time staff of three:



March 10th, 2006

Now that I’ve got this blogging software worked out (more or less) I’ll start writing more about what’s actually going on in our lives. I’m still a bit wary about blogging, because once you put something online you have little control over where it will end up and you never know what the repercussions will be as it bounces around the internet and comes flying back at you (or others) in the future. Puppy Poo Girl is a sobering case in point.

For this reason and so as not to thrust my friends and family unwittingly into the blogosphere I will refer only minimally to people who are otherwise extremely important in my life, and even then only by pseudonym or initial. For example: my partner J; my friends A, B, C, D; the Prime Minister JH . . . etc.

I will never upload photos of my family or friends to this blog without getting their permission first.

Pets (like this one) are another story.

Uberpets a whole ‘nother tale yet again . . .

Why blog?

March 10th, 2006
Why blog?

It’s part of my strategy to stay sane in the face of decreasing functional capacity. This year has been the worst since first becoming ill in 2001. I’ve found it essential to expand my repertoire of home-based pursuits in order to manufacture something resembling a more meaningful existence and to bolster a flagging sense of self-worth eroded by years of disability. Meaningful moments and achievements in which one can take pride . . . the potential for these is bundled in the day-to-day traffic of most relatively healthy and balanced lives. They may be invisible to us and we may take them for granted, but they are normally there.

Being largely housebound, the life challenge shifts from simply uncovering these as latent potentials to in fact creating them mostly from scratch, and this requires you try that little bit harder, precisely when you are least able to do so.

It’s a tough one.

Accumulated grief over lost opportunities, abandoned career and other life-plans threaten to overwhelm on a daily basis, so you need to get particularly smart about it.

Ergo the blog.

Apart from its main purpose of (hopefully) keeping me connected (or perhaps re-connecting me) with the people in my life — sort of popping my head up to say “Hi. Although I can’t visit and I’m usually too brain-fogged to keep up my end of a phone conversation, I am thinking of you” — the very process of composing and refining a post over a few days, of mastering the software and even learning a bit of HTML code are all achievements in which I can take some small measure of pride, allowing me to feel there are aspects of my life I still have the power to drive forward.

In Cow Dung News . . .

March 10th, 2006

I was delighted to learn it’s now possible to extract vanilla essence from cow dung (Link). The process takes just one hour and costs half as much as extraction from vanilla beans.

Hmmm . . .

[Insert joke about vanilla smoothies tasting like shit here]


Anxiety and Sloth

March 10th, 2006

The obligatory pet photo.

They are the embodiments of Anxiety and Sloth. My constant companions:

Slobbered-on “Scout” Mylickovich and Ziggy “The Id” Stardust.

Can you tell which is which?

Welcome to my world . . .

March 10th, 2006

This is the nerve centre, folks.

The universe continues expanding, evolution proceeds inexorably forward, but here there is calm. Stasis. Time and space for reflection . . .