Follow by Email

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

My 10 cents and my nude picture.

I once posed nude for a "healthy body image" campaign. 


Here is the picture:


Yes, fairly tame compared to the St Kilda boys but I knew full well that after I posed for this shot other people were going to see it. I think that can be assumed of any photo taken. 


After I had taken in ALL the available [visual] information on the "St Kilda nude photo scandal" I have to say the one thing that stuck with me was the fact that the boys posed for the shots in the first place and are now crying foul that they have seen the light of day. That and the lack of pubic hair... (Did anyone else find that a little confronting?)


Nick Riewoldt is now bleating about how he asked that the photo be deleted HOWEVER he obviously did not make sure of this. Also, for those of you who have seen the shot - it's not like he has his wang covered with one hand while trying to block the lens with the other. Boyfriend is working his angles - AKA posing. 


This "school girl" as she is disturbingly referred to in the press has been called everything from a "trouble making slut" to a "lost little girl". I think one thing's for sure ladies and gentlemen; meet your January Zoo Weekly cover girl.


Some people are asking why? Why is she trying to deliberately destroy these young mens lives? To them I say: SERIOUSLY?! Has she not been clear enough? Let me break it down for you all.


Here is a series of the "school girl's" tweets from a month ago, you can actually see the flames of revenge grow from glowing embers into a full blown inferno.. 


Remember, this is the same girl who claimed to have fallen pregnant to an un-named St Kilda player earlier this year. The tweets are obviously aimed at the player she had the alleged affair with. She is also clearly upset with how the club and the AFL handled the situation - THIS is a woman scorned:




"I need you to be here for me, I need you to be a part of this, I need you to keep my last ray of hope alive."


"Don't put me through this again, If anything... do it for bubs."


"Last Night... Well, What can I say? Absolutely shattered at the consequences... Ciao Ciao Life Plan.. x.."


"It's safe to say that if this goes through; My life will be a mess and not worth living. I'm awaiting judgement day.."


"As if you have a new girlfriend, then you call me and say you love me.. What the ? A tad confused .."


"I feel strange, I'm used to being the one in control and the one that's manipulating you, not the other way round.."


"HA. But, I WILL take you down, you know I will... I've got nothing to lose, unlike you. It's ON."


"Now it's getting interesting.... come get me fucker... Oh how I can't wait for next month."




You know how this ended... She posted the pictures and here we all are.


I do not wish to say much more on this topic, every man and his dog has had their go. I do wish to make the following points.


1. If she did in fact lose her baby as she claims them I am truly sorry for her loss and hope she has some kind of a support network around her. 


2. Those boys should never have posed for the shots if they were not happy with the possibility of them getting out.


3. Nick Riewoldt blaming Sam Gilbert is a cop out. He could have shown leadership and accepted some responsibility.


4. The footballers are not the only ones to blame. This girl has displayed behavior that is down right predatory.


5. When you break it down it's just a bit embarrassing for the boys. They'll move on and probably be able to laugh about it all in time. I get the feeling this is a deep scar for this young girl, one that may never heal. 


6. The AFL has a very long way to go to repair and grow it's relationship with the ladies.


Keep it in your pants if you don't want your Grandmother to see it kids.


MERRY CHRISTMAS!


Em x

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

How I was almost arrested at the dry cleaners.



A few hours ago I tweeted this:

"So, how's your morning been? What's that? Oh, yes the dry cleaner tried to have me arrested. No biggie. JESUS what a day."

 I thought a mini blog was in order to explain myself.

Today I found myself being held against my will inside a dry cleaners.

Not a sentence I expected to have to type, ever in my life. EVER.

I have been going to this dry cleaner for the past year. They are a Vietnamese couple, you pay cash up front and they operate on a fairly dodgy hand written receipt system. 
The cash register is a throw back from colonial times and they prefer to grunt instead of speak. Why do I go there? They do a bloody great job and it's cheaper than anywhere else I've been to.

A week ago I had dropped off 3 of my most sparkly dresses and 4 black jackets with various tassels, studs and leather trimmings. These are the staples of my wardrobe as you can well imagine. It is what I call the "nucleus" clean, all the most important and utilized items put in together for an en mass sprucing. 

I now realise this was a mistake when I was faced with never seeing them again. What was I thinking?! The royal family never fly together just in case the plane goes down. The President and the Vice president travel on seperate planes for the same reason... You always have a spare around just in case. I should have only put half of the nucleus in. 

The man who works there gestured at the receipt book and I was forced to admit that I had, in fact lost the 10cmx10cm piece of paper he'd given me the week earlier. My dresses happened to be hanging just to the left of the counter. I said "Look they're just there, if you call the number on the receipt my phone will ring and you'll see they're mine" he shook his head and told me to get out. 

I said- "Can I show you some I.D to prove it's me."
He said: - " Drivers Licence"
I then produce my WA license as I am waiting for my VIC one to come.
He said: "This is fake. I not trust this. Must be Victorian"

I then produced the following:
Passport.
Medicare card.
Credit cards.
Working with children card.
All of these cards baring my name and/or my resemblance. 

He still refused to hand over the dresses and press some sort of button that alerted the two women working out the back. They came rushing up to the counter demanding to know what was going on. 
I again tried to explain that I had lost the ticket but if SOMEONE would just ring the number on the receipt hanging on the dresses my phone would ring or perhaps they would like to peruse the 55 other forms of ID I had produced. 

Woman number one said: "We not trust anything but a Victorian license. You find someone with a Victorian license to sign for you."

I said I would not be doing that. I explained that I had already paid, I have more than enough ID here to prove it's me and that I was taking my dresses and leaving... I grabbed them off the hanger and headed for the door.

THIS IS WHEN THE SHIT  HIT THE FAN.

Next thing I knew the man has got me in some sort of head lock and woman number one has jumped across the counter and locked the door. Woman number 2, with the skills of a Ninja -managed to wrench the clothes from my hands. She then screamed something in Vietnamese which was obviously along the lines of "call the police."

Cut to me standing in the corner shaking with no escape and 3 crazed lunatics shouting at me and calling me a thief!

The police were on their way and I had heard them tell them I was "violent" and an "angry person." Really?! Only one person had been placed in a head lock and it wasn't any of the 3 small shouty people who stood before me.

I managed to stop shaking long enough to call Scotty. The conversation went something like this:

Scotty: "Hello"

Me: "(Hiccup, sob)...I'm being held captive at the dry cleaners, they've called the police they say I am trying to steal my own clothes. Can you please come, and please bring your Victorian drivers license"

Scotty: "Right, (deep sigh) I'll be there soon."

The fact Scotty didn't even question it or sound remotely surprised probably looks pretty bad but I can honestly say this have never happened before.. Ok, so once I took on a woman who punched a bank teller in front of me but other than that my record is clean!

The police were taking their sweet time, I guess I wasn't considered that dangerous a criminal in my leopard print maxi dress with my bewildered 3 yr old child (yes Odette was there) sitting on my hip. 

Scotty arrived to find me crumpled in the corner with Odie stroking my hair, bless her she knows the drill. He knocked on the door and surprisingly they let him in. He produced the much sort after "Victorian drivers license" and my clothes were handed over... JUST LIKE THAT.

I informed them all I would not be returning there ever and to expect a visit from the police as I was pressing charges for assault... Of course I will never follow through with that but it felt really good saying it.

I am still a bit disturbed over the whole incident but I do have my vintage Chanel sequined jacket back so alls well that ends well. 

E x




Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Radioleaks and how to win a prize pack!

Radio had little meaning to me until I was introduced to Tony Martin and Mick Molloy. I was 15 when they started doing drive time. I was hormonal, a bit angry and pretty much hated everything (except Dawson's Creek) when I first heard: "Now it's time for the adventures of Blimpy the Lactose-Intolerant Cat. He's not very well, he's leaking a smell. We should put him out but, it wouldn't be fair. 'Cause he's just a normal cat..... with the shits!" It's fair to say The Martin Molloy show rocked my Dawson's Creek loving world. 


With segments like "Girlie Man" who shopped at Portmans and loved fake tan and the aforementioned Blimpy, radio suddenly stopped being background noise. It became a genuine source of joy, and above all, really good poo jokes. Now I'm afraid with the departure of Hamish and Andy radio is in danger of becoming bland, background noise once more.


When the boys finished up last week a huge gaping hole was created in the radio landscape. I, like a lot of poeple were left wondering what was next? Teams like this rarely come along and for a radio nerd like me it caused a little bit of panic. You see, I want people to love radio as much as I do! I am some sort of self appointed ambassador and radio is my wayward daughter...


Anyway, I thought this week I'd take you on a small tour behind the curtain of the radio world. Inspired by Julian Assange (topical), I thought I'd share with you a little of it's seedy underbelly, some of my experiences and assist you all in winning a prize pack!!!


I wish to start by saying as a performer, how much I love radio. It's instant, you can't be edited and you and only YOU are in control. Also, it's very personal. People chose to let you into their lives on a daily basis, I always felt very humbled by that. The five years I spent on radio were the most challenging and rewarding of my professional life so far.


I am not here to give away all of radio's secrets as I do wish to return to that medium one day, it's kind of like the "magicians alliance" - certain things should be kept quiet to maintain the mystique.


So here is my watered down version of Radioleaks.


In relation to breakfast radio - the listener is king. You lot wield a vast amount of power, we live and die by the ratings. One day an un-assuming little media survey book may arrive at your house. Our careers hang on that book and the boxes you tick. The ratings come out 8 times a year and in fact, one came out today. Only those who work in radio truly care however should you ever wonder how your favorite radio team are really going, all the results are widely available on the internet. 


The two main players at any radio station are:


1. General Manager - Has the final say on hiring and firing. Oversees the stations finances, sales, promotions and client integration. Manages "talent" expectations. Essentially GOD.


2. Content Director - Everything you hear on air this person is in charge of.


A very special mention will go to the hardest working, most under paid and least appreciated person at any radio station - the Breakfast show and Afternoon show producers. They are the heart and soul of the show. They take the ideas from the white board and make them a reality, then the on air talent take all the glory.


When you first start out on a new radio show every show is to be treated like a first date, you're courting a new audience. The poo and fart jokes must be kept to a minimum and the "re-set" technique is heavily employed. 
Every time we spoke about something in our personal lives we were trained to always "re-set". That is, I couldn't just say "Marchella came home from school with a penis pen" I had to ALWAYS say "Marchella MY DAUGHTER came home from school with a penis pen."  For a very long time people thought my husbands actual name was "Scotty my-partner". The re-set became second nature, I found myself doing it in everyday life. When I introduced people I would unconsciously re-set each of their lives for the other. A proud moment for me came 2 years in when my then boss said "Em, you no longer have to refer to Scotty as your partner. Market research shows it now has traction".  Woo hoo!


The good news for you is that most show are heavily reliant on good quality callers. If you wish to become a much loved and relied upon "regular caller" it's quite easy. Listen for the call out on a phone topic. The early phone topics are the ones that struggle the most. I suggest you start here, only a handful of people are your competition and they are usually a little off the pace. The show's producer will answer your call, you have about 10 seconds to impress them. How do you do this? Take your voice up an octave on what it normally is and smile A LOT. Seriously, the word "vibey" gets bandied around as the main attribute a good caller needs to have. Be ready with your story, sound happy, get it out quickly and you will be welcomed back time and time again with open arms with many a Delta Goodrem CD pack to be enjoyed.


Another thing I can tell you is that there is a check list of "stunts" that seems to be mandatory if you take part in a radio show.


1. Drinking your own Urine.
2. Setting yourself or your co-host on fire.
3. Drinking breast milk.
4. Jumping out of a plane/bungee jumping/ab sailing 
5. Lie detectors (Although Kyle Sandilands pretty much ended that for everyone.) 
6. Some sort of dangerous animal in studio.
7. Facing a phobia live on air.
8. Public nudity.
9. Listener Wedding.
10. Piercing some part of your body.


Every time it was suggested that I to do one of these (which usually coincided with a dip in the ratings) I would end up in a lengthy battle with the content director. I would always argue that it was lazy radio, that people could see through it and know we were just desperately trying to get publicity and ratings. I was worried we'd become "Stunt FM" - It was a battle I seldom won. However, I am proud to say I NEVER drank urine or breast milk on air, I have no comment on the rest of the list.


Sometimes you get to use your powers for good and not just commercial gain. We came up with the pap smear express which actually helped to save at least 2 women's lives. We were able to highlight post natal depression and help those who genuinely needed it. I was always overwhelmed by how generous the public were when it came to helping their fellow man, for the most part people are good. 


It's a hard balance though, sincerity and satire.. The two are not happy bed fellows by any stretch of the imagination. It is possible to have a show purely based on comedy but you couldn't just have a "helping the community" show because, well - it's depressing. We were always torn on how to combine the meaningful with the comedy.. 


Each week we would do what we called a "rescue". The station would help out a family/individual who was going through a tough time. We didn't always get these right, and many questioned their place in the show entirely. You would have heard these on air. The host's tone changes and the emotive music begins...On one horrific occasion a man who'd lost his wife in a house fire was on hold waiting to speak to us and we realised we were playing a song called "dead and gone" there was nothing we could do. It was THE longest 3:30 sec of my life. The worst, by far, was giving a woman who had cancer, tickets to a Beyonce concert with thanks to a HAIR LOSS company... 


Nothing is truly "live" we had a 10 second delay and also, a dump button. A highlight for us was when someone would accidentally dropped a C-bomb or F-bomb... Thanks to the dump button-you will, in theory, never hear that. After the Kyle Sandilands lie detector debacle things became very sanitized and controlled. Every time a slightly risque topic was suggested in the months to follow my boss would just shake his head and solemnly say "Kyle".... Yep, nuff said.


But enough of the secret stuff... I've only just still got my foot in the door as it is.


What is next for the beast I love? 


I have some suggestions!


Brave new content directors and show producers who haven't come up through the system. NEW BLOOD.
A return to well written sketches.
Bring back the radio play.
Live studio audiences.
A house band. 
Less dumbing down of content.
Smart, articulate, challenging and entertaining people on air.
Smarter and more effective integration of ads.
Less focus on getting web hits and more focus on what people are listening to IN THE MOMENT.


One of the saddest moments of my life was the last Martin Molloy show. Hearing serious news reader Jim Waley manipulated to say "Crazy lesbians full of beans" to the tune of a Prodigy song and then Rob Sitch's un-mistakable nasal tones declaring "Tony Martin and Mick Molloy have left the building" was very disappointing.
I felt much the same way when Hamish and Andy signed off for the final time.


Who will save us from more mediocrity now? 


I have some suggestions!


Sam Mac
Ed Kavalee
Sam Pang
Ryan Shelton
Tom Ballard
Dave Thornton
Paul Verhoeven
Hannah Gadsby
Dan Burt
Scott Doolie
Aleisha McCormack
Rebel Wilson


Thanks for indulging this radio nerd. All I ask is that you demand more from your radio announcers and the stations they belong to. Because in the immortal words of Rachel Hunter: "Yor werth et"


Have a fantastical week.


E x















Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A confession of sorts.

I think, un-intentionally, I have created a safe place for all of you to come and feel better about yourselves.


I imagine you must read how out-of-control, irrational, pathetic and flawed I sometimes am and think to yourselves "Jesus, I thought I had problems"... This is a public service I am happy to provide AND today is another such example of me falling on my sword. Get ready to love yourselves sick.


There is a very clear marker I have in my life that indicates how I am traveling. Where I am at mentally, spiritually and physically. For some of you this marker may be alcohol, chocolate or perhaps a lover. For me? It's Twilight.


Yep, go on JUDGE ME. I have transcended embarrassment over this one. Yes. There is a direct correlation between the amount of times I watch Twilight/New Moon or read the series and how I am getting along in life. What I am trying to say is: I love Twilight.


At first I resisted the Twilight saga. I'll admit, it was hard. I have had a love of fantasy novels and movies my entire life.
I grew up on The Never Ending story, The dark Crystal, Labyrinth, The Princess Bride, Flight of the Navigator, Xanadu, The Wizard of Oz, Willow, Edward scissor hands, Beetle juice, Star wars - you get the idea. I also obsessively played Zelda on my Nintendo and had a disturbing collection of unicorns and care bears.


For a fantasy nerd (Ferd) like me Twilight was a given. Alas, I let the more intelligent, highbrow literature loving friends of mine shame me into looking down on it like everyone else with a mild intelligence level or who was over the age of 16 did.


I would feign boredom when the young kids who worked at the radio station would pledge their allegiance to either team Jacob or team Edward and ignored the release of the first Twilight movie all together. It was on a flight between Dubai and Rome that in a weakened state I gave into watching the movie and since then, things have never been the same.


Fear not, for those of you who hate Twilight I am certainly not going to delve into the story line, which team I am on, or even mention the fact that I have pre-ordered Eclipse on DVD.
I am also completely aware the books are written by a 35+ year old Mormon woman living out her repressed sexual fantasies through her teenage fictional characters.


The main character Bella is a shit house role model for young girls. She requires CONSTANT supervision as she repeatedly lands herself in near death experiences and finds it endearing that her vampire boyfriend likes to position himself inches away from her face staring maniacally at her while she sleeps. I am well aware the text is not comparable to Austin or Bronte or even Enid Blighton however I DON'T CARE.


I watch it and read it so my brain can rest. It takes little to no effort to submerse myself in and as I am a romantic at heart it really is one of the greatest love stories I have ever been involved in. Edward says things to Bella that I think deep down a lot of us yearn to hear. Even though she is needy, clumsy, plain looking and of mediocre intelligence the glorious creature that is Edward loves her unconditionally for who she is on the inside. Trite yes but I feel something a lot of us can relate to. The fantasy that the goddess/god we have lusted after could look past our perceived imperfections and see our pure hearts and amazing intentions... or something like that.


When I'm feeling neglected by my Husband - I turn to Twilight.
When there is nothing on TV - I turn to Twilight
When I miss out on jobs -I turn to Twilight.
When I'm feeling flat - I spend the day in bed watching Twilight.


I've noticed lately I have been watching it a lot and have been dipping in and out of the books again.
It forced me to look at the reasons why. As I mentioned before, the amount I read and watch it directly correlates with the status of my life.  Twilight not only helps me escape it also forces me to address why I need to escape. BRILLIANT!


The moral of the story this week is as follows - If there is something you love that those around you mock you for, hold your head up high and tell them to feck off. I am surrounded by intelligent, hipster, self important, New Yorker reading, multiple degree holding wankers (friends that I love dearly) who take themselves far too seriously. I have let go of my attachment to what they think of my reading habits and instead of hiding my copy of "Breaking Dawn" inside my "Book of Longing" by Leonard Cohen (which by the way is an excellent book, some of the most beautiful poems I have ever had the pleasure of reading) I proudly bandy it around openly proclaiming my love for it.


My point is, love what you love no matter how daggy, low brow, cheap, tragic or embarrassing others may judge it to be. Who cares what they think anyway? I don't. I know that I have the love of a good man to keep me going.. Edward Cullen.


Be proud this week darlings.


E x



















Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Can't see the depression for the mustaches...

Depression is a bitch.

It's lonely, boring, dark and it hurts.

I have battled with it for as long as I can remember. Right now, I'm good as gold. That is always a fluid statement though.

I know I probably seem like the last person you'd find weekly in the fetal position on the bathroom floor at 3am crying hysterically into a pile of towels so not to wake the children. Well I am.

And I'm sure I'm not alone.

I'd like to have a short chat about depression and suicide. Not sexy topics I know. Uncomfortable for many. Too be honest I don't give a shit if it makes the vast majority of people uncomfortable. Enough is enough. I know people, high profile people who suffer from depression. I know everyone of you reading this now have had it effect your life in some form yet for most people it's still the big fat weeping elephant in the corner.

A young man killed himself last week in Prahran, I saw them covering his body on the tracks near Commercial road. You didn't hear about it because the media are not allowed to report on suicides as there are fears it may spark copycats and also it is obviously very distressing for the victims family. Sometimes I think the media should report on it as I think most people would be shocked at just how prevalent it has become. Suicide rates in Australia are ridiculously high, especially amongst young men.

On December 6th, 2008 a man very dear to me killed himself. He was the most talented, kind hearted, funny, humble and intelligent person in my life. He hid his depression from all of us, only those closest to him truly knew the depth of his pain. Ironically, Richard was a comedian. Having said that, I know quite a few male comedians and quite a few of them have battled with the black dog from time to time.
It was Richard's funeral that made me realise I needed tackle my own demons. If it could overpower someone as amazing as him, what hope did I have?

This month, many men have grown mustaches to show their support for mens health including male depression. While I absolutely support the idea behind Movember I just worry the absurd mustache is in danger of distracting from the REAL ISSUE they are trying to bring awareness to. I know a few blokes who have grown mustaches and when I enquired as to how I could donate I recieved a blank stare in response. They were just using Movember as an excuse to put porn star strips above their top lips because "everyone else was."

Statistics show that men are hit harder by depression than women as they are less likely to talk about it. Thats why the suicide rates are vastly higher among men than women. Movemeber is an awesome idea, but it's not enough. I know talking about depression and suicide is, well, depressing. It's not ideal dinner party conversation but maybe it should be.

I just ask that the next time you see a young man looking disturbingly like Adolph Hitler or a young Tom Selleck, spare a thought for WHY they look so ridiculous and ask them how you can donate.

If you are feeling shithouse, so bad it hurts to get out of bed. TELL SOMEONE. Tell me if you need to, YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

www.beyondblue.com.au
beyondblue Information Line: 1300 22 46 36



Life line: 13 11 14
Mens Line Australia: 1300 78 99 78



Salvo Counselling Line: 1300 36 36 22



SANE Australia Helpline: 1800 18 
SANE(7263)




Everyone deserves their little bit of peace.

E x

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Brown paper bags don't always mean porn. Sometimes, it's much worse.

On Saturday mornings my husband goes out riding with a group. Yes, I VERY generously allow him out of the dungeon once a week for some fresh air and sunlight. 


He and the rest of the bike nerd brigade head out in their tres un-flattering and ridiculously expensive skin tight red lycra jumpsuits into the Dandenongs and do manly things. (Spitting, farting, weeing out the side of their nicks you get the idea)  


When he gets home he is usually so tired and grateful I can get him to do pretty much whatever I want. Cleaning, cooking, child rearing he is but compliant putty in my hands. It's a win win for both of us! 
So when he got home from his ride 3 Saturdays ago and announced he needed to go into the city to "pick something up" I then found myself getting all Angela Lansbury on his arse. (if you're under 30 here's her wiki page http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angela_Lansbury)

Em-"What do you mean? You've been gone all morning, it's family time now" (Note to reader "family time" usually consists of me escaping from the house to get a coffee and read the paper)

Scotty- "I'll only be an hour or so, I have to go into the city to pick something I ordered up and then I'll come straight home."

Em- "SOMETHING?! What is this mysterious package? Are you some sort of a drug mule now?" (I always go to worse case scenario to throw him off.)

Scotty- "Yes Emy, I've joined an international drug cartel. See you soon."

OH NO HE DI-IN'T.

He totes did.

So I waited, I waited HARD. When I heard the front gate open his hands were empty.. I tried to pretend I was faffing with something near the front door so he didn't feel completely ambushed when he walked in, it was a VERY weak attempt.

Emy: "So WHERE'S the package Scott?"

Scotty: "Inside my jacket"

Emy: "Let's have it then"

Scotty: "What? No! It's none of your business" (Red flag, bull.)

I'll spare you the rest of this particular argument. It ended with him producing a (da da da daaaaa)
brown paper bag....

Of course my first thought was PORN. What else comes in brown paper bags? Liquor? Cigars? Nope it had the shape and weight of porn. I was relieved, I have no issue with porn. I'm not all that into it but I get that it's pretty much the sole reason for the Internet being invented. 

He took the reading material out of the brown paper bag and I totally expected to see "Revenge of the Slutty McSlut Sluts 3" or something along those lines.

My friends, what he took out was far worse.... Twas a book.... Entitle:

"The way of the Superior Man" - A spiritual guide to MASTERING the challenges of WOMEN, work and sexual desire" 

He'd bought a SELF HELP BOOK.

I of course read the above title as "The way of the MASSIVE WANKER who wants to MASTER his woman, Em Rusciano"

Disclaimer: I have nothing against those who turn to self help books. I guess as someone who has suffered from a severe mental illness I scoff at those who turn to books instead of hard drugs (prescription kind) and therapy. HOWEVER, I also know sometimes you just gotta do what ever gets you through and gives you a bit of hope. So if you are reading a self helper now and loving it sick, carry on with my blessing.

I also feel there are a lot of opportunistic chirpy morons out there who write these books filled with empty, new age bullshit promises that prey on the overweight, sad, lonely, clinically depressed and the divorced and often deliver nothing. Also, these same chirpy morons are CASHING IN.

According to Forbes.com: "Americans spent $11 billion in 2008 on self-improvement books, CDs, seminars, coaching and stress-management programs--13.6% more than they did back in 2005, according to Marketdata Enterprises, Latest forecast: 6.2% annual growth through 2012."

The other thing is- my husband is a high performance coach. He helps dissatisfied executives, elite athletes and everyday people find balance in their lives. He is essentially a walking self helper, he's the best there is. Why was he now turning to a BOOK? I thought I knew why. Obviously he had a problem with the one thing he couldn't life coach his way out of, ME!

I was irrationally upset and felt very threatened by the whole situation. Every time I would catch him reading it I would make a big point of sighing and shaking my head, To his credit - DID NOT BAT AN EYELID. 

He read the thing in a week. He said it was a great and I should think about reading it. HA! As if I would give him the satisfaction and AS IF I would EVER stoop to the "self help" level of pathetic.

I started reading it yesterday. In secret. It's good. It has some wanky language but the overall message can only BENEFIT our marriage. He was doing a positive thing for us, I had managed to build it up in my mind as an attack on me. It wasn't. Damn him and his evolving self.


I knew it was going to be ok when I read the last line of the intro..

"Stop waiting.Feel everything.Love achingly.Give impeccably.Let go."

My husband loves me in his own quiet, reserved way. Sometimes, I want FIREWORKS and ROSES...

If this book can deliver something close to that then I'm OK with it.

Be kind to yourself - That's for free!

E x





Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Why sex and GPS don't mix.

This is a a cautionary tale and a moral dilema, lets call it a "cautalema"... This story was told to me over the weekend by an old friend who I had not seen in 10 years. By the time he had finished I had gone through so many emotions I thought I'd started menopause. 


Before I begin I must explain to you that you will need to leave any sort of judgement, homophobia, shock and political correctness at the door. If you don't feel you can then best you stop now and come back next week. I need you all to look at this in terms of being HUMAN and nothing else. 


Also, the key player in this story is an iphone app called "Grindr". Wikipedia explains it as: 


"A geosocial networking application for the iPhoneiPod touch, and iPad. The app makes use of the device geolocation, which allows users to access other gay and bisexual men within close proximity. This is accomplished through a simple user interface that displays a grid of representative pictures of men, arranged from nearest to farthest away. Tapping on a picture will display a brief profile for that user, as well as the option to chat, send pictures, and share one's location."


Basically it's speed dating via GPS for gay men who are not looking for anything meaningful.
I have several friends who have become so addicted to this app they are incapable of holding a normal conversation anymore as they are constantly checking their Grindr profile for nearby sex options. The iphone beeps, a photo appears (I won't go into detail on the types of photos that get bandied around. Let's just say NONE of them would be on Mum's mantle) and they disappear to meet the headless torso they've just ogled.


It's crass, brash and frightens the hell out of me. I've ask them what if it's some freak posing as a gay man trying to lure them to his house with the intention of chopping them up into little pieces. They laugh at me and tell me to stop being such a "mother".


Here comes the the very true tale..


My friend Barry* is a lovely guy. He's handsome, reliable, punctual, family orientated and painfully shy. He moved to Sydney 9 years ago to pursue his now flourishing career and also thought that since he was fresh out of the closet his chances of meeting someone would be greater in Sydney. Grindr isn't for everyone, it's for brave, forward men who aren't afraid to throw cation to the wind. Grindr is Barry's worst nightmare, poor darling has only had 2 long term relationships and finds it very hard to meet men due to his crippling shyness. Against his better judgement, he decided to give Grindr a go. 


At first Barry would just chat with blokes and when the idea of a meeting was suggested he'd panic and swiftly block the man from his profile. However, one night after a few beers he decided he'd just bite the bullet and accept the next invitation extended to him....


He turned on his profile and had a look at the men who were within walking distance of him.. Being in Surrey Hills quite a few popped up. He saw a picture of one that he quite liked and was only 500m away so he clicked on the profile and had a look. The guy was olive skinned, muscular had long eyelashes and a kind face. The fact that he had his face in the photo was a relief for Barry as usually it's only "waist down" shots. They exchanged a few polite messages and finally it was decided Barry would go to this guys apartment.


He gave himself the pep talks to end all pep talks and walked the short distance to the man's apartment. He got in the lift and waited to be buzzed up. The man said he'd meet Barry in the hallway so as he arrived at the correct floor a rush of nervous excitement swept through his body. The doors to the lift opened and he looked expectantly to see his Greek adonis with the kind face......


He looked left, he looked right he walked out of the lift and fell over a small man in a wheel chair. 


YOU KNOW WHERE THIS IS IS GOING DON'T YOU.


I'll take a brief break from the story to tell you that as he was telling us this we were in a very crowded Sydney pub all gathered in to try and hear him over the din. When Barry dropped the wheelchair bombshell the gasp echoed around the room so loudly the DJ stopped playing.


So. He walked out of the lift and shin boned himself on the edge of a wheelchair.


"Barry?" the small man asked....
(At this point someone says - "Tell me you lied. Tell me you said no.")
"Err yes, yes I'm Barry" Barry answered.
"Great, that didn't take you long, come in. Can you try and be a bit quiet my Mother and Grandmother are asleep in the next room" 


Barry, being the polite person he his followed the man back into his apartment with the sleeping kin and didn't know what to do. WHAT WOULD YOU DO?


Yes of course disabled people deserve healthy sex lives. No it should not make a difference if someone is in a wheelchair but it does doesn't it? Especially if you're not been expecting it.


Various theories were being thrown around the pub at this point, one of my other boys said he would have been upfront immediately and said "you didn't mention this" (pointing in the general direction of the wheelchair) and would then have promptly left. 


Barry is not that guy. He's not one to assert himself and he's certainly not one to make someone else feel terrible. So, he went inside the man's apartment and did what was expected of him. The logistics of this hook up were a nightmare but that's not for this blog to dissect, however I will say the term "wheelchair mono" was used.  Barry said it was awkward, awful and humiliating for both of them. He could not believe after all the angst and worry about going on Grindr his first experience led him to a man who lived with his Mother and Grandmother and was wheelchair bound as well. He asked me what I would have done, I said the guilt and my innate need to make everything ok would have taken over and I probably would have gone through with it also.


Needless to say he's never been on Grindr again.


Word on the street is "straight" Grindr is in production as we speak.


E x



Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Keeping it nice at the races.

Yesterday I was disbursed by my employer the 7pm Project to cover the Melbourne cup. There are still two big days left on the spring racing carnival and I just felt some sort of an intervention needed to be done after viewing the many disturbing sights I saw yesterday.


I give you: 
Em's guide to keeping it nice at the races - because as we all know, the difference between triumph and tragedy can be just half a length or just half a Champagne.


1. Shoes on AT ALL TIMES ladies. I CANNOT stress this enough. If you cannot go the distance don't wear the footwear simple as that. In fact do not remove any part of your outfit unless it's a jacket. The Melbourne cup is not the place to get your kit off and dance like it's 1999.

2. Do not allow yourself to get completely horizontal AT ANY POINT. Having a cheeky Nanna nap is not a good look. 

3. Do not under any circumstances use a garden bed for a toilet/rest area.

4. Have a sober friend who's sole purpose is to maintain the groups dignity.

5. Chugging Champers STRAIGHT from the bottle is a no no.

6. Have either cleavage OR legs out. Repeat "OR" not "AND".

7. Decent underwear as it can get windy.

8. The only "mounting" of a filly should be happening on the track NOT OFF.

9. Do not let your boyfriend "design" your outfit and keep it for a "surprise" on the day. When you watch the video below please take note of the poor blonde girl in the silk cream and green number. Wardrobe malfunctions were occurring every time the wind changed.

10. If it's going to rain be prepared. Cutting a hole in a garbage bag is just not a good look. Also the "drowned rat" look is so last year.

Thus ends my public service announcement. If you missed it, below is the link to my Melbourne Cup 7pm project story. You have to go about 5 minutes in before it starts.


Keep it nice, think of your Mother.


E x