Saturday, August 22, 2015

You want what?

Prudence's beloved roasts coffee and dispenses cups of happiness.  Along with witticisms.

He has a particular aversion to repetitive questioning or uncouth requests.

Some unfavourites:
  • Been busy?
  • How long have you been here?
  • Do you really roast your own coffee?
  • Can I have my coffee extra hot?
That last is an insult to the beans, if you were going to ask that of a barista, don't.

Then this:

Customer: Can I have a flat white, please, without the milk?


Beloved:  Sorry?

Customer, embarrassed:  A flat white...

Beloved:  ... without the milk?


Beloved:  So you want an espresso? 

(technical detail: a flat white is an espresso with milk)

Customer:  Um.

Eventually, they worked that he wanted a long black.

Which is quite a different thing.

One wonders how other, less understanding, baristas have handled such a request.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Overdoing it, rather.

There is a character in one of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy novels who, upon seeing instructions for toothpicks, concludes the world has gone mad.

Prudence, upon finding an instructional video CD with her new compact, concludes the same.

While Prudence does insist upon a flawless complexion, treating clients as imbeciles (said VCD is  accompanied by a leaflet along with an instruction-heavy box) is poor form.


Tuesday, July 14, 2015

In the interim

Damnit, one is back.

Since one's last, the household has acquired a dog, a superannuated Italian sheepdog (Maremma) who is lovely and beautiful, if thick and incontinent.  Some mornings are more unpleasant than others.

The neighbours have had a baby.  They seem to think that shouting at it will convince it to be quiet.  The neighbours are on par with the dog's intellectual capacity.  But we've always known that.

 Life goes on.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Not quite Valentines

Valentines Day coincided with payday this year.

There was Prudence withdrawing some cash on her way to the station.

A man (definitely not a gentleman) of advanced years watched this with unnerving interest.

"Have you got enough money for your husband?" he asked.

There are lots of things Prudence thought about saying, but eventually opted for good manners.  Sort of.

"I beg your pardon!"

It seems our PM is right.  Australia is definitely sexist.


Thursday, December 27, 2012

He's gonna find out who's naughty and nice

The ABC seems to have dusted off rather a lot of Louis Theroux for the Christmas holidays.  And isn't he a funny little sausage?

The other night, Louis brought together some very different people in New York in the lead-up to Christmas 1997.  He set them some group activities and individual challenges.  Not surprisingly the very innocent looking porn star and fundamentalist Christian nutcase bully did not see eye-to-eye.

The fundamentalist Christian nutcase bully (amusingly, called Randy) took particular exception to dressing up in Santa costumes and collecting money for charity, arguing Santa was more Satan.  Which does not agree with the generally accepted history of Saint Nicholas, but that's an argument for another day.

He blustered about Satan Claus (ho, ho, ho, ahem) and complained that children, when presented with a choice between Santa and Jesus, would choose Santa.

Well, no wonder, thought Prudence.  With Jesus, the only way one finds out whether one's efforts were worthwhile is when one dies.  With Santa, there's reliable feedback every year.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Things one sees on the way home

Prudence got off the train to carollers, a barbershop quartet and Santa in most ill-advised shorts.

But that was no more absurd than the Hyundai Getz pulling a full tradie's trailer complete with air-compressor.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

On missing the point

Prudence wrote a memo the other week.  As one does - in the public service, memos are like blood.  They circulate, new ones being made, old ones being excreted, and they make things happen.  One hopes.

This one argued strongly against awarding a grant.  Laws had been broken, policies disregarded, integrity was entirely absent.

The first time it came back, there was a righteously indignant admonishment on its lack of block justification.  Apparently a non-block-justified memo is poison to the eyes of the executive.

So Prudence grumbled and re-justified the stinking memo and sent it back up.

Not altogether surprisingly, it came back down, this time accompanied by a gormless young man.

"I think you should include a procurement option," he mumbled, not meeting Prudence's eye.

"No, you've missed the point," said Prudence with not a little incredulity.  "Under no circumstances should we give this lot any money."

"But I'd like you to include the option."

The conversation, if one could stretch the truth sufficiently to compliment it so, went back and forth in a similar vein for nearly half an hour, Prudence's patience wearing dangerously thin.

The upshot:  another memo.  Explaining again the extreme dodginess of the applicant, and putting forward a whole different suite of arguments on why said applicant should be sent away with a flea in his ear.

Life is ever so.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

On middle age

It being three weeks from Prudence's 43rd birthday, she was most amused to be called "Girl" this morning.

But it was a fairly grizzled farmer describing her thus, so one supposes that's all right.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Not what one was expecting. An occasional series.

Prudence did not know what to say

when Beloved said:

"Try this, it's lamb curry."

And it turned out to be

a piece of cauliflower.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

One wonders why one bothers

Of course Prudence said yes when asked to give a speech on kitchen gardens. (One of her favourite topics.)

So she read and researched all over the internets, thought hard about themes and attention spans.

Fully prepared and a little nervous, she arrived to find...

... one person in the hall.  This swelled (eventually) to 12 people.  There were a lot of empty seats.

By the time it was Prudence's time to speak, one gentleman in the back was asleep.

Monday, September 24, 2012

On its own

If, as reported, Iran is setting up its own walled-in internet, what, Prudence wonders, will the LOLcats think?

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Under the influence

Prudence merrily tingled her bicycle bell to signal her arrival home.

Several hours later, Beloved found himself possessed of (or by) an earworm.

Queen's Fat Bottomed Girls.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

In the dead of night...

Goodness, but it has been a long time.

All sorts of things have happened.

There's been a trip to Melbourne, which ended up with severe flu and delayed flights home.

There's been angst about one's employment - yet to be resolved.

There's been all sorts of busyness around a sustainability initiative.

There's been a dawning realisation that one of the surviving chicks is a rooster, then crowing confirmation of same, followed by arranging an adoption.

There's been car troubles of the sizeable-repair-bill kind.

And last night there was weirdness.

At 2.30am, Beloved leapt out of bed, Prudence struggled slowly through the layers of sleep.

There was kerfuffling and Beloved came back into the bedroom.

"What's going on?" asked Prudence.

"The TV was on," said Beloved, "and the dog's missing."

Not what one expects to hear at such an ungodly hour.

It turned out the dog, who knows better, but is determinedly naughty, had decided to sleep on the couch, rather than her own bed.  In getting settled, she'd trod or lain or something on the remote control, thus turning on the television.

Having freaked herself out, she'd sought refuge in bed with Beloved's 12-year-son who happened to be staying over.

Which was a much nicer outcome than the original hypothesis which involved dog-napping, television-controlling ghosts.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Sweet thing

Yesterday was Beloved's birthday.  Inconvenient, it is, having a birthday on a Monday, so most of the celebrating happened on Sunday.  It being winter, Prudence eschewed a traditional birthday cake, opting for a crumble.

Which was most enthusiastically received by Birthday Boy and guests. 

To Monday night and dinner has been dispensed.

Prudence: Would you like some dessert?

Beloved: No, I'm so full I might pop.

Prudence: OK. (and moves to put the leftover crumble back in the fridge)

Beloved: Oh! No! If it's crumble, I'm not full.

Prudence:  (dissolving into giggles) Is that so?

Beloved:  No.  I'm never too full for crumble.

It is nice to have one's culinary skills so roundly appreciated.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012


The train to Midland attracts all sorts.

This afternoon Prudence could not block out a pair of first year uni students, both desperately trying to be alternative.

Said the boy (self-consciously camp voice) to the girl (deliberately bored tones): "I've, like,  culled a lot of people from facebook".

Girl: "Like, how many friends do you have now?"

Boy: "Only about 400."

Girl: "Oh, like, that's not very many."

Prudence couldn't tell whether that was sarcastic.

Friday, July 6, 2012

On the road

Whatever, Prudence wonders, could inspire a person to:
  1. purchase a white, bog-standard, bottom-of-the-range Hyundai;
  2. stick a decal of Casper the Friendly Ghost on its bonnet;
  3. pay good money for a personalised number plate saying CA5P3R?

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

A certain kind of discernment

Prudence was more than unimpressed to get back to her very recently purchased car, left hopefully in the station car park that morning, much later that night to find the front passenger window smashed.

The thieves (and that's the nicest word Prudence can think of) took a leatherman tool from the glovebox.  They either didn't find or didn't want the brand new GPS.  Small mercies, one supposes.

Turns out it's $100 cheaper to just pay for a new window than to make an insurance claim.  At least the bloke who replaced the window vacuumed up the broken glass.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The inevitable

Prudence, along with two friends has started up a community group to spread the word about kitchen gardens. 

With a bare minimum of marketing, the group is growing beyond all expectations - kitchen gardens are very, very now.

Inevitably, their activities have attracted the attention of a nutcase.

It turns out, in the world of poultry (for the next meet is all about chooks in the backyard) the politics is nasty.

Prudence does hope this one-eyed chook fancier - who had a number of concerns but was prepared to articulate only his worries about the cholesterol content of eggs - goes away, and others are discouraged.  But she's not at all confident.

With meets planned on preserving the harvest, building a backyard pizza oven, planting out the spring garden and so on, there's much to inspire further nutcasery.

(If you're in the eastern suburbs of Perth and are interested, see here)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

On gritting one's teeth

Prudence has long been a student of human nature - fascinating if frustrating and occasionally completely mad.

However there are some things that are quite clear and logical and - above all - obvious. 

This truth one knows to be self-evident: if a person looks pale and wan and is struggling with the day, jollying her along is only going cause offence.

So the two colleagues (two!) who felt that saying "smile!" to Prudence yesterday, as she struggled with the day, really deserved the snappy telling-off they copped.


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

On taking chances

In a fit of feminism and empowerment and other words usually associated with shouting slogans and marching with banners, Prudence has applied for a very blokey job.

Having done a bit of research lately, it seems that if a job has 10 criteria and a bloke feels he meets two or three, he'll apply, whereas a woman won't put her hand up unless she meets eight or nine of them.

Prudence looked at the five criteria of said job and figured she had a decent go at about three and a half.  So she put her mind in a blokey frame (ie embroidered skills and experience) and threw in her metaphorical hat.

It will be interesting to see whether having a go works out.