Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Six Random Things About Me

Bagley tagged me with this one. I ain't tagging anyone else. Yes, I'm a rebel without a cause, without a pause, without drawers?

  1. When I was sixteen, I fell in love with the saxophone. Because I couldn't afford one, I bought a harmonica instead. I've been playing ever since.
  2. For one whole year in high school, I only wore red socks. Yes, with other clothes. Quiet, you in the back.
  3. My biggest fear is an almost indescribable feeling of being turned inside-out in more than three dimensions.
  4. I can flare my nostrils on cue. Hey, not everyone can.
  5. My cat's name is Dax. He's a moggie, but mostly Russian Blue with a touch of Oriental.
  6. I was on Facebook for a while until it gave me the shits. So I removed myself. My digestion improved immediately.

Phishing Scam In The Office

Excellent! We just had this happen to us in our office. Of course, we didn't fall for it.

Fraud Squad detectives issue warning about ‘phishing’ scam targeting Sydney residents

Wednesday, 30 Apr 2008 12:53pm

NSW Fraud Squad detectives have today issued a warning following several reports in the past 24 hours of a ‘phishing’ scam targeting Sydney residents.

Several Sydney metropolitan residents have reported receiving an automated phone call, either at home or work, purportedly from a District Court. These messages should be ignored as they have not been authorised by the District Court.

In each case the intended victim is asked to press a number on the phone and is transferred to a call centre, who then forwards them to another person. In a number of reported cases, that scammer has claimed to be Col Dyson from the Fraud Squad.


Meanwhile, any members of the public with information about the scam are urged to contact detectives via Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. Information can be provided anonymously and will be treated in the strictest confidence.

Friday, April 25, 2008

The 123 Meme Ends Here

My creative energies have been sucked dry by my work schedule so I haven't been blogging much or spending too much time on the internet, aside from hanging out at The Wormwood Society. I still owe Barbara a post, but for now, this one's nice and easy.

The 123 Meme:

1. Pick up the nearest book.
2. Open it to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the next three sentences.
5. Tag five people, and acknowledge who tagged you.

Damien over at After Dark My Sweet tagged me, but since so many people have done this meme already, I'm going to be a complete rebel against society and not tag anyone else.


"It turned out that the bar hadn't ordered the correct glassware for a Boston shaker, so this guy had just improvised. Even when the right glasses arrived, he decided to keep using the two metal pieces. Nothing wrong with that--it displays showmanship and imagination."

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Movie Marathon

With my head full of cotton wool and my nose full of mucus, I've had the last couple of days to catch up on a bunch of movies. Reading's been too hard for this noggin, but I seem to have a little energy for writing just now, so what better time could there be to throw some movie thoughts down onto the blogosphere.

28 Days Later

Took me a long time to get round to seeing this. Aside from the poor film quality, this movie was a well realised update of the classic zombie flick. A little less cliched than Dawn Of The Dead, and a little less fun for it, but still the usual great look at how people survive in horrific situations.

28 Weeks Later

One of the reasons I'd put off seeing this for so long was that I wanted to see the prequel first and two movies at once only works well when I'm laid up on the couch stuffed full of tissues. For this moment, this is my favourite zombie movie of all time. Not that I've seen all of them, but it was mind-opening to see a movie take on what happens when society rebuilds itself after a holocaust, rather than just the descent into it. Great tensions throughout and a believable vision of how badly humans handle anything important.


Great to see a movie present a mostly balanced look at all sides of an international issue, but still a little too clear cut for my liking. And I wish Jake Gyllenhaal had a few more dimensions than just a blank worn out stare.

No Country For Old Men

Beautifully shot and acted, paced with a brilliant balance between the stillness of wide open spaces and the tension of action. Has one of my most favourite bad guys in the cinema of late. It also never tired me when it took the time to flesh out character details that weren't necessarily relevant to plot.

I Am Legend

I'm still yet to read the book, but this film delivered far more than I expected. Will Smith did a great job of holding the screen with no one but a dog and some mannequins to play off. It was also great to see a sci-fi/horror movie that didn't morph quickly into an action flick after the main ideas were presented. I took the extra time to watch the alternate ending and I think I prefer it. On the one hand, it's a little soppy, but it's also far less of a resolution, not bothering to tie up threads that didn't need it.

The Descent

This is right up there with Wolf Creek as some of the finest horror I've seen. Takes its time building the tension and claustrophobia but held me all the way. Great to see a group of women focusing on the task at hand rather than a group coupling off into likely love interests. And that's because the prologue did a great job of setting up that relationship tension, without having to waste time on it while we deal with the horrors that unfold. Strangely, these last two movies have similar looking monsters, but I much preferred how this movie only used CG when it had to.


I saw this earlier in the day, when I was feeling more lethargic, but it perked me right up from the get-go. Fuck me, I haven't had this much fun watching a film in ages. Some wildly implausible situations are completely forgiven by the tongue that's been super glued to the inside of the director's cheek. Killer soundtrack and hilarious action throughout, this is the film Shoot Em Up only wished it could have been. Loved the 80s videogame reference too!

Other stand-outs I've seen recently but not in the last few days have been Michael Clayton, Syriana, The Lookout, Last King Of Scotland, Fast Food Nation, Fur, and Fido. Haven't got the cojones to go into them right now, but they're all movies that have stuck to the inside of my skull and might never let go, for one reason or another.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Snapshot Interview

At the end of 2007, Karen Chisholm (of the Aust Crime Fiction weblog), Damien Gay (of Crime DownUnder) and Perry Middlemiss (of Matilda) decided a similar snapshot of Australian crime fiction was required.

Over the past couple of months these three have conducted a number of small, five-question interviews with a wide variety of Australian crime fiction writers and will begin publishing them across the three weblogs, starting Monday March 3, 2008.

If you are at all interested in the current state of Australian crime fiction, you'll find this series very entertaining and, hopefully, illuminating.

This is where you can read my interview, and here are all of the interviews.

It's especially worth reading my interview because I mention the existence of two dimensional poo.