No sleep for me..

Friday, 1st November 2019

I took that photo on Saturday actually: in among the hordes of fat Sydney weekenders all waddling into town for this fuckin’ idiotic annual ‘Octoberfest’ in their summer moomoos and ridiculous designer sunglasses, that bird just laid dead on the footpath and it was still more attractive than the people stepping around it.

Like most events in Katoomba, Oktoberfest is designed to lighten people of their money and with no other legitimate historical context at all: chicks dress in slutty German beermaid costumes and people drink too much beer – that’s it.

Like the way the Winter Magic ‘festival’ is really just any idiot with a marquee setting up stalls right up and down the main street to sell shit nobody needs: there’s absolutely no history to it. Katoomba has never had any kind of harvest festival or May day celebrations – greedy arseholes just invented the event to make money.

Whew, see I’m already tired and cranky and it’s only 3:34 AM ๐Ÿค”

Bet I can’t even have a piss when I get off at Blaxland because the godamn station toilets will be closed.

Saturday, 2nd November 2019

Right, it’s been a bit of a week you might say and though I’m inclined to give an expansive description of how the butchers opposite Coles came to be boarded-up because I’ve just spent half an hour milking a very bored security staff-member for information so it’s all fresh in my mind, I’ll just truncate down to an excerpt.

What happens when a shopkeeper becomes inappropriately nasty and abusive towards their landlord.

Though I’ve always bought my meat from supermarkets anyway, I was surprised this morning to arrive at the shopping centre and see the butcher who’s had a shop in the complex for at least the 6 years or so I’ve lived in the mountains suddenly and completely boarded-up and shut.

A sign taped to the MDF sheeting informed shoppers that any enquiries should be directed at center management, but the security dood standing out front was more than happy to get me caught-up on what happened and in a nutshell, the butcher’s have had a bit of a grudge that’s been going on for years with Coles due to the megalithic supermarket chain obviously selling meat much cheaper: Woman #7 tells me she bought lamb chops for around $35/kilo just a week ago that would’ve cost her $50/kilo at the ‘actual’ butcher just twenty meters away, so it’s not hard to understand why most people rather buy from Coles, right?

Personally, I’ve never understood why people would want to remain bound by loyalty to any business that charges more for the same product and though it sucks for small business that they cannot compete with huge supermarket chains I just don’t give a shit: as a customer, all I care about is getting the best deal and paying more just to support local business is a bad deal for me.

Anyway, with all the loyal regular customers the butchers shop is doing just fine far as sales go but the owner has maintained such animosity towards Coles that a few days ago the owner of the butcher’s shop lost his shit and went over to throw a tantrum at the manager of the supermarket manager – who happens to not only the butcher’s competition but their landlord.

Coles built Katoomba Shopping Village and they own it, so their response to his threats was to tell him rent is now doubled.

The owner of the butcher’s response was to get very angry and tell Coles to fuck off, to which Coles calmly replied that they’ve got until Sunday – tomorrow – to have his little butchers shop packed-up and gone ๐Ÿ™‚

Stupid move really – being abusive towards a supermarket giant who is also your landlord.

Coles even went so far as to ban him from doing business in the shopping centre until he goes and have assigned a security guy who’s sole job is to stand out front of the butcher’s store and make sure they do not continue trade while they’re packing-up to leave.

Talk about slamming the small business with full force right? ๐Ÿ™‚

That socially-programmed little bit of me quietly mumbles about how mean the giants are squeezing the poor ‘little guys’ and bullying local businesses around, but really that’s just social conscience group-think leaking into my viewpoint: there’s plenty of meat in town at better prices for everyone, so who gives a rats about greedy local businesses throwing tantrums because of their own inflated pricing.

With over 1,000,000 town visitors a year and only 7,600 locals in Katoomba there’s enough tourists throwing money around like confetti that the few shops make far more of their money from those tourists than we locals.

Ultimately too, from everything I’ve heard the owner of that Butchers shop is a loud mouthed, abrasive arsehole who’s been gnawing at Coles ankles like an irritating small dog for, forever, so he’s dug his own grave opposed to being bullied or shut-down unfairly by any competition.

So that’s why the Butcher’s has closed their storefront at Katoomba Shopping Village.

Here’s something else – from today’s garden at Woman #7’s: a kind’ve porcupine topiary I cut out of a shrub with a whip-snipper while mowing/snipping her yard..

The new/old job situation

So far I’ve worked just three 4-hour shifts and have $300+ coming to me for them so the rate of pay is very nice and though the standard casual rate with the company is just over $25/hour, the hourly rate for starting before 5:30AM is almost $30 so I’m unsure exactly how much I’m getting hence the little ‘+’ but it’s certainly enough to make me happy to be casual and not yet permanent.

There are some teething issues to update – issues that’re no longer issues thanks to that Oracle of mine pushing me to take my complaints straight to the top of the managerial ‘food-chain’ rather than fucking around debating with my immediate supervisor: I’d planned to raise said issues with an email to the Human Resources section of head office on Monday because I’d not slept yesterday and was just too tired and fuzzy to deal with it, but she demanded I do it now exhausted or not and demanded that instead of simply sending an email to HR, I contact the Service Delivery Manager – top of the pyramid of supervisors for the company, do it right then, do it with a phone call, then ring her back to update her on how it went.

I told her she was tripping, that monday would see me with a well rested brain than actually functions, that if I do it while I’m this exhausted I’ll just sound dumb as a box of hammers and that I’m not at all in the frame of mind to be talking to the apex boss for the company.

I told her all the excuses, she told me she didn’t wanna hear my dribble about not having slept, I told her nooo I’m too tired, she said ‘Do it NOW’ and I did it NOW.

Like my own private union rep, personal advisor and tigeress in a five foot frame: how can such a tiny women have so much more attitude than everyone else and why is it I wouldn’t want her any other way?

I’ve bluetoothed the keyboard and you know, now I have contact lenses again I can see even the little phone screen well enough to type with that instead of the tablet and without needing to squint and locate my face inches from the screen.

I’ve gotta go to bed early tonight, though now I think of it, setting my alarm early and actually getting up when it goes off might be more crucial than the time I fall asleep.

Gotta go to bed early, but want to edit the above work-related text and update that before I do: outside a rant or two about the old guy I cleaned the TAFE with, I never bothered to write anything about work last time I was employed – just left the site pretty much idle.

Sure I posted about Moose a bit but that got to the point I would’ve sounded like those annoying new parents who incessently dribble on and spam photos of every little second of their new baby like they’re the first people to ever reproduce a living human being and my posts about my parrot would’ve got to about that point with no posts about my life outside the bird.

So this time I wanna include it, if not simply for balance then for the fact it’ll give me something else to bitch and rant about than the woman that’s either making me drool like a lovesick puppy or swearing I’ll never talk to her again.

Right – Mondays clothes are washed and hanging to dry.

So the work teething issues I have talked around but not actually explained are three-fold: firstly, after several shifts over several weeks now I still have not recieved my employer ID card or uniformed top and though the uniform isn’t vitally important – especially given they’re hi-vis orange so ugly as shit and I’ve got much nicer looking clothes I can wear in place of theirs, the ID card is very important.

Though you’re almost never asked to identify yourself – certainly not if you’re wearing their uniform – the company has the contract to clean all government buildings throughout Sydney and it’s surrounding regions: from schools to TAFES, Sydney Trains, Centrelink offices, Medical Centres and Fire Stations, we clean all that shit and it’s a condition of employment that all cleaners to carry their card at all times while on site.

Last week doing the first 4-hour ‘training’ shift at Katoomba High School, this supervisor – Mohammad – rocks up at around 5:30AM with his ipad and does the whole sit-down induction checklist (knows how to check cords, knows not to stand in pools of water while using electrical equipment, knows not to drink chemicals and where the MSDS sheets are for each, knows which colour cloths are used to clean which areas, knows all that silly bullshit – check, check, check).

I made it faster for him by stating from the outset that I’ve worked for the company already, that I already know all that shit and so he’s just basically gone ahead and ticked all the boxes on his ipad in silence while I sat and waited for him to finish, at which point he’s handed me my ID which wasn’t mine at all but some dood called Mathews’ card.

I mean the photo was of a chubby wranga with pasty-white freckled skin, so I don’t know why he even asked if that was me but I cleared that in the negative instantly and he’s just sorta grimaced, told me that’s the one head office gave him then handed me the ipad to sign my name at the bottom of the training form, which I did.

Nothing was mentioned about organizing the correct ID and I wasn’t bothered at the time but then when 8:00AM rolled around the other cleaners told me ‘Mohammad wants you to stay until 9:00AM, but we leave at eight – since we’re not sure what to do with you afterwards you should wait in the common room until the principal or vice-principal gets here and clears you’

“What, just wait in there doing nothing for an hour?”

‘Yeah, but only until the principal arrives, then he’ll tell you whether you can stay without the card or whatever’

“That sounds like unnecessary boredom.”

‘Yeah it is, but that’s what Mohammad wants, so we’ll see ya later’

As they were about to leave and before I had to sit around waiting in the common room for nothing, the vice principal gets there and they explain what’s going on, with me telling the VP that our supervisor didn’t bother to bring or arrange any ID for me, and that even after asking him twice for a uniformed shirt he’s just mumbled ‘Sure sure’ and done nothing about getting one from the car for me and when I added My phone is telling me it’s nine right now, you know”, the vice principal looked at his watch, looked at all us cleaners and then agreed we’ll call it nine and we all left then, at 8:00AM.

Fast foward another week and he’s asked me to go out and cover three shifts at Blaxland High, which I agreed to because even though it’s almost at hour away it’s still several hundred dollars in my pocket and if I continually refuse any work that’s further than I wanna go I’ll end up with no money from this job while I’m waiting for work that’s closer.

I’m over-explaining all this mm.. might have to just delete it and summarize because it’s getting too long-winded.

Then again, it’s a record of my supervisors’ uselessness that’s fresh in my memory and might be a useful reference in the future..

Three full shifts and Mohammad the supervisor still hasn’t so much as mentioned my employee ID card, nor uniform, and every time he’s text or rang he’s told me there’s no work whatsoever in the upper-mountains, which is where the company advertised they needed cleaners for – even now they’ve got ads on seek.com for ‘Cleaning position – Upper Blue Mountains’.

Now, everything I’ve written so far covers my own personal experiences with this immediate supervisors’ shiftiness and in a period of only the first two weeks, but what I haven’t mentioned is other cleaners experiences with him – which they’ve openly told me.

One of those things about the company I liked last time I worked with them was the automatic camaraderie amoungst cleaners: we’re all on the same level, we all have a baseline distrust and suspicion of our supervisors and although some cleaners liked this supervisor or that one better or worse they all openly bitch and complain to each other about any wrongs that might’ve been committed against them and being on the same 4:00AM starts, same pay-grade and same level we all take one anothers side anytime a supervisor fucks up and all hear each other out anytime we feel like something dodgy is going on because it’s usually happening to more than one of us.

We all exchange anecdotes and stories, gossip and accumulated knowledge of our bosses to the grapevine and I’m pretty sure the supervisors know we do.

No, no it’s getting late and I wanna go carve a bit of boat before I go to bed so I’ll leave this and start off with what the grapevine informed me of tomorrow, plus illustrate how the consultants at WISE employment are so discouraging of my chasing-up any of the issues I’ve had within these first few weeks of working with the new supervisor: discouraging to the point you’d swear there was some kind’ve conspiracy going on since they’ve repeatedly encouraged me to simply sit and wait until Mohammad decides to give me work or an id card or until Mohammad decides he’ll get around to giving the hours I’ve worked to payroll in time for the current pay cycle: ‘Passively do anything the supervisor wants Jason and don’t do anything in case it ruffles his feathers’ is what the desk-dwellers at WISE have told me I should do.

The woman who loves me was of the polar opposite opinion: ‘talk directly to someone high enough in the company to actually have some power and fuck whatever Mohammad thinks of it’

The woman who loves me is a much better power-player than the salary-fattened office hogs at WISE – whose jobs physically contribute nothing at all to the world since all they do is sit at a desk typing and talking on a phone while telling other people they need to work and doing so for a lower hourly rate than even I now get in an entry level cleaning job.

Thanks to the woman who loves me, my incompetent, lazy supervisor became my bitch within a single hour of following her advice.

The WISE employment consultants would’ve had me just sitting on my hands, biting my tongue and kissing the supervisors arse until I build a ‘personal rapport’ or earn his personal liking: instead, the Service Delivery Manager himself had Mohammad stammering apologies to me on the phone and arranging fixes for all three issues on the spot, so not only does the Service Delivery Manager know who I am, Mohammad knows I’ve got a direct line to his boss and will not hesitate to go straight over his head in future if there’s any shifty bullshit outta him.

Win-win ๐Ÿ™‚

I didn’t end-up elaborating on the whole “workers grapevine” thing, but I’ll get around to it.

Not like I wont hear plenty more stories or have a single gripe of my own ever again in the future.

Sunday, 3rd November 2019

9:37 AM

This fucking woman is a mentally ill menace to anyone wishing to just wait for a bus in peace..

Crocs and socks: waiting to snare some poor sucker and ear-rape them ๐Ÿคข๐Ÿคฎ

Yeah she’s got her back turned but trust me you’re not missing-out: when I walked over to wait for the 686 to town she was busily sloughing all her make-up all over her face, and when I say “all” I mean I think she literally had all the make-up she owned on her face as I crossed the road and walked a good ten meters from the actual bus stop and plugged my earphones in just to ensure there was no reason for her to believe I was open to conversation.

I’ve never liked make-up on women personally: if a woman is beautiful then make-up only looks ridiculous – especially close-up – while conversely if a woman isn’t attractive, no amount of make-up is ever gonna hide the fact.

Well applied eye makeup can make beautiful eyes look striking mind you, but even then if the eyes are already beautiful they really don’t need face-paint applied to them either – healthy and fit women look great everywhere without anything added and thankfully there’s a lot more women these days who know that and don’t use make-up and look much more naturally beautiful for it.

I know you’ll be thinking I’m sounding like a sexist arsehole passing judgement on women who feel the need to use visual improvements on themselves but I don’t give a shit I’m just stating the obvious.

For the years I’ve been living here she’s been out around town at random bus stops and she’s one of those local characters every town has, though “character” is reaaally stretching it given there’s very little going on in her head and the one or two conversations I made the mistake of having with her considered if her basically trying to chat me up by droning on and onnnn about the most banale shit you could imagine.

One of those people who starts with a ‘hello’ then once you acknowledge her with a reply she’ll instantly imprison you into mindless talk that only stops when you physically walk away.

It’s off to do some whip-snipping today: I’ve gotta get up at 1:00AM again tomorrow morning to allow time to caffeinate and get my arse to the station in time for the first train of the day to Blaxland.

Given I had no sleep on Thursday night, anything I can do to tire myself a bit will help me fall asleep earlier because not sleeping always sucks when you have to drag your zombie-brain around all day and cannot go to bed even though you need to.

Monday, 4th November 2019

3:03 AM

I slept! ๐Ÿฃ

I’m not sure for how long, but sometime – maybe about an hour after sunset – I stopped scratching at the grass stuck all over me and woke up with the alarm going off.

Excellent.

8:50 AM

Done and dusted and on a train back up the mountain. That’ll be the last shift there for now, though I’ll start hassling the supervisor tomorrow and I gotta say, that arsehole was out at the site with bells this morning to take my photo for my ID.

Still he says it’ll take a week or so for head office to print the card, but that’s alright for now: at least he’s got off his arse and come taken my pic for it.

A pic that didn’t look half as good as the last ID they gave me because of the fluorescent lights in the library where he took it – on the same iPad the supervisor always carries I might add, which means there wasn’t any reason he couldn’t have done that several weeks ago at Katoomba High during that first training shift.

Before I forget, this high school has these chilled bubblers that are just fucking awesome when you’ve been sweating like a pig for an hour or so and I don’t remember ever having refrigerated drinking fountains at any school I went to as a kid..

Ice-cold water right from the tap.

I spent a good two minutes at a time just sucking that icy goodness in me anytime I’d walk past that set of bubblers – brilliant.

Thursday and Friday I got a lift back to Springwood station with the head cleaner but today he was going to Penrith after work so I had to walk to Blaxland station and though it’s an easy walk given how flat the topography is there, I had to practically power-walk two kilometers to save myself the half hour wait until the next train up the mountain.

I did heave the option to get a lift back to Blaxland station with one the other cleaners – a guy called Andrew who’s filthy, very overweight, has terrible looking yellow-tinged skin, mumbles to the point of incoherence and seems to never wash his work clothes at all – but I told head-cleaner-guy I’d maybe pass on that, “Andrew’s just given me a twenty minute explanation of all his woes and troubles with Sandra – I don’t wanna hear it all again in his car driving back.”

The head cleaner chuckled then took it upon himself to pull out his phone and find train departure times from Blaxland to Katoomba for me while I chowed-down on a Turkish Delight chocolate one of the teachers had given us as she walked past and though I told him it wasn’t necessary to check since “If I’m walking there anyway I’ll be taking whichever train comes next”, I suppose it was nice of him to check the timetable and him messing around with his phone gave me a minute or two to eat the chocolate bar before I left so that’s fine.

So Sandra is the one I’ve been filling-in for the past few days, and though she was back today they still wanted me in there to catch-up on what was missed Friday since they were two short, so there was what, five of us there this morning – the number of cleaners there should always be for a site the size of a high-school: I did the four-level library, one of the computer rooms and a half dozen classrooms and yeah whatever I finished everything with twenty minutes leftover so that was fine.

But the reason Sandra was away the last few days is because of Andrew – who for some reason felt compelled to spew all the beans to me about the ‘incident’ that occurred between him and Sandra last week.

The head cleaner had told me already that she’d taken a pretty bad fall last week and that she had a problem with one of the other cleaners and as far as Andrew himself told it, he’s walked straight through a doorway at the same time Sandra was coming out, but Sandra is tiny and Andrew is like fuckin’ John Candy so they’ve run into one another – she got knocked clean off her feet and has injuries as a result of this collision, which is why she’s been off work, though there’s clearly more to it – I don’t get the impression she thought it was an accident.

Andrew then leaned closer and lowered his voice to a whisper to warn me not to trust Sandra: ‘She’ll be all nice and sweet and lovey-dovey to your face, but soon as you turn your back..’

He’s then started making slow stabbing motions and noises to match each time the imaginary knife moves down: *squeak* *squeak* *squeak*

‘Stab ya in the back.’

“Right.”

‘Stab ya soon as look at ya she will.’

“Right. You seen our head cleaner around?”

‘And she’ll keep doin’ it again and again’, *squeak* *squeak* *squeak*

“Well, she..”

‘I’m just givin’ ya a heads up dood look out for her.’

“She won’t be here when I am anyway – I’m filling-in for her.”

‘I’m just saying – she seems nice, but you can’t trust her.’

“Sure okay, I’ll try not to walk into her. I gotta find our boss..”

‘Yeah spose I’d better go wipe some tables, though it’s probably my least favourite job.’

He’s then diverted to telling me how much he dislikes wiping tables and desks, and mind you at this point I’ve already wiped-down every desk in the library, computer room and seven classrooms and finished all my allocated work for the morning and am looking for the head cleaner to see if he’s got anything else needs doing and this dood would’ve probably finished everything he had to do too if he wasn’t so fat and unhealthy.

I don’t know why random people do this: like they’ve got some natural urge to tell me things I never asked about, but all you’ve gotta do is keep maintaining the position that you’re listening to what they’re saying and halfway interested and they just talk and talk and talk.

I only spoke to Sandra herself twice all morning and she seemed perfectly nice to me – five feet nothing, petite, very focused on her work, Russian accent, super polite: once when I first got there and the head cleaner introduced her to the guy who’s been covering her at which point she thanked me for filling-in, and a second time – about twenty minutes before it was time to go at about 7:40 AM when she again thanked me ‘so much’ for doing her work while she was away.

“No need, I’m getting paid for it” was my answer, which I recycled to the head cleaner when he also thanked me for showing up and helping out – since they’re always understaffed at that school it appears.

So as for Sandra being a backstabbing bitch, I’ve got this fat dood who looks like quite the rapey type telling me this Sandra is ‘lovey-dovey’ to his face then stabs him in the back and that neither the head cleaner or Sandra or Mohammad the supervisor will tell him what he’s ‘meant to have done’, but I got the impression he either knocked her down deliberately or maybe there was some kind of groping went with this ‘accidental’ collision because it sure sounds like fat Andrew has quite the thing far as Sandra goes, considering that’s the only thing he talked about the one time he stopped to talk to me alone – Sandra, Sandra, Sandra.

*…

Tuesday, 5th November 2019

5:37 AM I woke up this morning, having fallen asleep roughly twelve hours prior so there clearly was a few extra hours needed catching-up on.

10:07 AM

I’m at WISE employment because I want to go to Woolies to pick whatever food I want for dinner and need time to think about it so I frequently drop in when I’ve shopping to do, to dump my backpack consider what food to buy hoping to avoid walking around the supermarket like a fool with no idea what I want, but also because I don’t need them for anything so don’t mind dropping in today: my batteries got charged at the womans’ place on the weekend so they’re good for the rest of the week and it’s payday so I don’t need anything here at all.

To my surprise, there’s none of the regulars: they’ve been replaced by some fill-in chick and a fill-in dood – the former of which offered me a coffee as soon as I asked “Who are you two?”, so I didn’t even have to go make my own. Apparently Anne and the others are at some kind of training shit so that’s good – saves me arguing with dickhead about everything.

I’ve gotta text that supervisor actually, hassle him about shifts and hours: I’ve decided I’ll just keep harassing the motherfuck with a text every day or two until he gets sick of it and gives me more work.

“Got any shifts coming-up for me yet?”

I’ll just keep sending one every two or three days from this point on and hopefully he’ll get fed-up hearing me asking enough to roll ’em out.

I was thinking matter of fact, about the as yet unfinished update from yesterday and it there’s any benefit to being casual outside the much higher hourly rate, it’s the fact I’m filling-in for random cleaners at random sites which means there will actually be things to write about: working permanent at the same static site gives you a reliable income and set routine you can settle into but there’s never anything goes on worth mentioning because you’re with the same workmate(s) in the same place doing the same thing at the same time – every day of the week.

Working casual shifts is like touring all the sites and with that comes the interactions with different people.

Still reliable income is good, though once you go permanent you don’t get to go back to casual, your hourly rate drops to a depressing $18/hour and you very quickly start feeling like a prisoner to your work routine.

Gotta go do that shopping anyhow.

Maybe I’ll go in to the nursery tomorrow – it’ll either give something to do for the day or come the shits all day mm: it’s a real flip of the coin with volunteering at the wildplant nursery – either I’m having a reasonably good time and don’t mind that I’m spending time there for nothing or I’m not having fun which constantly reminds me I’m getting nothing outta being there, and the only influencing factor is the people present and the given energy of the group on any given day.

Gotta take out my contacts so I can carve.

Thursday, 7th November 2019

That project we talked about – that’s just the ticket you know โฃ

The site went down last night because of the new cpanel version not being compatible with MySQL – which didn’t automatically reboot itself.

Sorry to any Lurkers who didn’t get to read my dribble for the day – it’s fixed now and I’ve backed-up the entire site.

I’ve also checked the visitor stats and found that I get many more visitors from North America than Australia, which is strange really.

~10:00 AM

I finally went and bought a pack of these yesterday: first time I’ve bought actual razors in over a year..

It wouldn’t be photo-worthy but for the fact I never figured I’d buy razors again, since buying that electric beard trimmer but the beard trimmer requires charging at a time when I’ve already got enough things to charge with my battery packs and with summer here the days are growing hot enough that I don’t want even stubble on my face – which the trimmer always leaves behind.

I didn’t end-up going to the nursery yesterday, but amused myself elsewhere and don’t know whether to go in today or just go shopping today then go in the nursery tomorrow mm.

Tomorrow actually: I’m running low on clean clothes so I’ll go into town then wash clothes this afternoon so they’re ready for the next few days.

Super exciting shit ๐Ÿ™‚

7:46 PM

Dinner with her tonight.

For years, the woman who loves me went completely vegetarian and I honestly can’t tell you how depressing the thought was, of never even having the possibility of a Sunday roast with her again because she’s such a good cook yeah.

Don’t get me wrong her vegetarian meals are just as good as all her culinary morsels: whether it’s the fresh baked cakes and biscuits or meals the only food I’ve ever disliked that she created were the lentil dishes because I just don’t like lentils because they’re dry and pasty so anything with them in it is ruined by the lentils themselves.

Wagu beef sausages with salad and separate rolls for both ๐Ÿ™‚

Then as recently as just a few weeks ago she decided to just return to a carnivorous diet and we’ve had several good, delicious ‘comfort’ meals with meat back in them since and tonight it was gourmet sausages with salad and fresh rolls, though by ‘gourmet’ I don’t mean trendy-wanker sausages with stupid flavours like Guinness and rosemary: just plain meat sausages but expensive ones with Wagu beef and they tasted noticeably higher quality than the standard jumbo BBQ packs, with more meat, less filler and less greasiness they were lovely.

I want to write a slicker, more linguistically polished appraisal of tonight’s dinner but I was up at 6:00 AM and I’m starting to grow tired so that’ll have to suffice until I edit tomorrow, but I wanted to write-up dinner first because – like anything else I do with her – that is the highlight of the day.

Earlier, I went shopping and bought a three-pack of those stick-on LED cupboard lights because they came with a set of batteries ready to go for just $10 and although they are cheap shit, that’s really all I need to spread some function lighting around – if they only had solar panels and rechargeable internal batteries they’d be perfect for lighting the flat..

Stick one under the top cupboard in the kitchen over where I make coffee, one in the loungeroom and one in the bathroom and I’ve got light without needing to rely on my head torch in all three areas I use the most ๐Ÿ˜Š

Where it all began..

Four and a half years ago on a wooden bench just big enough for the two of us to sit quietly alone; side by side; nervously touching; natural back and forth conversation; vividly aware of the others presence; disarming eye contact with beautiful ice-blue eyes I just have to kiss.

Still like that after all this time and I’ve been helplessly in-love with her ever sinceโฃ

Her photo, not mine.

There – I mentioned you.

Friday, 8th November 2019

I’m at the nursery, but noone else much seems to be: two regulars and two unknowns..

1:00 PM

Just as well I came in to take the conversation to new and inappropriate lows and freshen the dynamic – these poor people would’ve been bored shitless if I’d opted to stay home today instead.

I mean Carole’s here as the ‘official’ manager for the day, but if we’re honest we all know she has very limited appeal and cannot talk to the same spectrum of personality types that I can, though she’s the only one knows all the prices do what she lacks in presence she, well she can take money and talk to other plant nerds.

Thank god for me.

3:18 PM

There were have it – I’ve given something back with almost a full day of almost working ๐Ÿ™‚

Even helped some tourists know this is where the bus leaves.

And another tourist couple asking me questions geez what am I a tourist information centre – it’s just all take take take with those people ๐Ÿ˜

Get this shit.

As I’m standing here writing the previous paragraph, the husband of the first tourist couple goes over to the toilets and leaves his 60-odd year-old wife at the bus stop a few meters away from me *…

Hang on I’m home and about to have buttery toast dunked in hot, sweet milky tea – like biscuits, toast is amazing dunked but the the tea must be sweetened and the butter must be real fully salted butter.

I’ve heard people ‘Eww’ this idea of dunking toast in tea but I’ll guarantee they’ve never tried it: trick is you’ve gotta just dunk the buttery toast quickly and eat it immediately and it has to be well slathered-up with melted butter – not just lightly spread.

Yeah that’s excellent.

One of those comfort foods from childhood I’d probably never thought to try if my grandmother didn’t dunk her heavily buttered toast like she did ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Saturday, 9th November 2019

How fortuitous: I’ll need to suck more blood out the cut to refresh the wound in about an hour or so when I’ve shaped this but it’s a simple, small heart that won’t take long to carve at all.

The boat though, is well drenched and won’t need any additional blood until I’ve finished the inside lines on the left side though I’ll go buy some 1mL junkie needles to withdraw the blood directly from my vein to fill those grooves.

Tuesday, 12th November 2019

I haven’t updated the last few days because I’ve been at her place half the time acting as her personal lawnmower man: mowing, snipping, clearing plants and vines that’ve taken over the yard and all that sorta shit.

Honestly my lower back is a bit sore, but it’ll sort itself out and I’d rather take care of the lawn: it’s one less reasonably sized job she doesn’t have to do, and though I’m technically employed again I’m still under-employed so it’s not as though I don’t have time to go over and do it.

Even if and when the work snowballs into flat-out it’s still only two days a fortnight probably – to keep the bulk of the yard under control.

Like I told her I like being able to serve her and you can google any standard virgo profile: we’re more than happy in a position of support and don’t feel the need to show-pony center stage โฃ

Servitude suits me fine, long as it’s acknowledged as a choice to be in service of you and not construed as my being some shrinking violet because I lack the personality for anything else โฃ

Still, I’ve just got back after hours of snipping and raking and it was hot today, so I’ll fall asleep soon and figured I’d update that before I do ๐Ÿ˜ด

Wednesday, 13th November 2019

It’s payday today and my shit-for-brains supervisor didn’t mess up this time: with almost $700 for just two 8-hour days split shifts I would happily stay casual forever if the work was regular, but it isn’t.

Christmas is coming up of course, so there’ll be fill-in work for those on holidays but until then I’ve just gotta hassle the supervisor for more hours.

Those early 4:00 AM shifts pay $30/hour so ideally I’ll take the inconvenience of that over the afternoon shifts given the choice.

Had I done two 8-hour split shifts both weeks I’d have a $1,400 paycheck this week for less than a full 40-hour weeks worth of work.

10:18 AM

WISE Employment this morning while my phone charges and since I’ve a bank full of money I’m in the mood to debate with whoever wants to debate because I don’t need to give a shit, well I won’t care once my phone’s charged.

My back’s feeling better, incidentally.

See if I can find a stock windows photo I haven’t already posted for my photo of the day. No never mind; I’ll just move yesterdays rose.

Saw Mandy up the street, who gave me a spiky ‘Good morning Jason, with the emphasis on Jason like she sort of spat it out, then Ahlei a moment ago who saw me but given she’s snubbed me a few other times I ignored her, though saw her and she’s one of only two or three people at that church I’ve any respect for at all: likely because she’s the only actual employee on the payroll there besides Rosa herself.

The flip-side of sliding people you once were close to in the bin once you’re no longer at a particular place, but what can you do?

Even with Old Brian and whats-his-name telling me I should go back there that whole church thing was a distinct period of time: I fully dived into it all while I was homeless, but have no desire to go hang around a food bank that attracts scabs now I’m no longer homeless myself, and much like these urchins you see around town just sitting on their arses all day harassing passersby for smokes or a few dollars, if any of the beggars at the church spent just an hour a day actually working they wouldn’t need to be grovelling around trying to justify taking handouts from a charity as a way of life.

Spend two or three hours a day working and they’d have money for smokes of their own and food they bought from a supermarket fresh instead of out their dumpsters.

Not that everyone there are murlocks and junkies waiting for free shit to be given to ’em, but most of them are and none of them can get a decent job with any kind of large employers because they’d rather be chomping on crack all week long and don’t have the strength of character to detox themselves in order to get a job so they choose to waste their lives hanging around a food bank like beggars pretending they’re at the church helping when most are like grown children: stepping on each others heads to try and scab more for themselves and waiting for mother Rosa to give them first pick at food that’s mostly other peoples garbage.

Maggots, writhing around vying for top spot on a garbage-heap of decaying food other people have already thrown in the bin.

Not only that, if they stopped hanging around other junkie losers and detoxed long enough to pass a drug test, they could pretty much return to taking drugs once they’d got the job as long as the job they went for wasn’t as a bus driver or with a highly safety conscious employer like Sydney Trains, who take random drug testing seriously: employers offering low-responsibility positions don’t waste the money performing sweeping drug tests randomly on their employees because it’s too expensive.

Not that I give a fuck: I’m not the one has to pretend to be friends with the society’s dregs just to continue having a place to score crystallized drugs that make me look like a walking corpse and inflate a sad excuse for a personality like a baloon full of air – I am drug-free outside of caffeine and nicotine and though I miss going home and smoking cones, I don’t miss the lack of energy, the random paranoia, the mood swings or the rest of the bullshit that goes with it and the moment I’ve got the steady work hours to pay private rent again I’m outta that fuckin’ ‘roach trap and into a share or granny flat somewhere people actually have aspirations in life and away from human garbage who spend their lives making excuses for being miserable wastes of space.

Oh, I stepped on a lizards head yesterday.

It was a complete accident of course: a skink was obviously raked up with the dead leaves and trying to hide around my feet but still, well, makes me glad I’m not a garden skink.

1:18 PM

Nobody argued with me at WISE, oddly.

In fact the only thing that got discussed was how difficult it is to give-up smoking, which it is of course and I stated the issue is that while I’d like to stop smoking, I love smoking so I’m much less motivated to continue than to discontinue.

Alright so as well as the $50 I’ve added to my opal card so I’m not forced to walk for a while now, I’ve paid the site for another 4 months.

That’s it for my spending – only needed consumables from this point on with the rest, but with the next payday buying this Tuesday I’m really not feeling much of an urge to throw money away on meaningless crap: I’ll be thrilled just to make it comfortably through a full three weeks without starving or running out of tobacco or coffee or food or whatever ๐Ÿ˜Š

24ยฐC tomorrow.. right so definitely a light shirt.. I haven’t judged the weather very well the past few days: yesterday I looked out the window at the howling wind and soone the flat is cold as a crypt, figured I’d be cold in the morning so wore a thick canvas long sleeved shirt and even foolishly my duck down jacket just to be sure.

Ended-up sweating like a fucking pig all day long.

So this morning I look out the window and see it’s sunny without much wind and only wore a thin cotton shirt: nearly froze my arse off from 8:00 until 10:00 AM until it finally started warming up a bit.

I’ll get it right tomorrow!

I’ll even leave the thermal pants out and an not even bothering to wash ’em.

There was several fire service suits around town when I was out before too: I stopped and asked a group of three of them whether the situations all-good and they said it is, that they’re just waiting around on standby on the offchance something else does happen, though it’s all clear far as they’re concerned for here.

One of them also confirmed that the fire in Katoomba yesterday was ‘probably a high school student or a tourist throwing a lit cigarette in the ground’ though they don’t know for sure and it just makes me wonder why there’s fucking idiots like that around.

People so stupid they don’t even have the intelligence to know that it’s not some wall of fire that would fuck a town like Katoomba, but the embers that fly through the air and can land anywhere and randomly start spot fires anywhere in town.

Never even mind if it gets down into the valley: all the animals that would burn alive just because some fucking clown wanted a cheap thrill or whatever stupid fucking excuse they might have.

Fortunately, the fire service we’ve got in the mountains are used to shit like that and pretty good at what they do, the ones who aren’t out starting fires themselves on the sly, at least.

Roll your eyes all you like: we have always known arsonists are attracted to firefighting the way paedophiles are attracted to teaching and though it might only be one in every town, nobody knows which one it is until they’re caught – if and when they ever are.

Without sick fuckups of whatever flavour, the world would be a nicer place: can’t stand cunts who just wanna damage and destroy other people, animals or property.

Anyway, I’m on my second ‘load’ of washing – or second sinkful – then I’ll do some carving of one or more of the several trinkets I’ve got sitting unfinished.

It’s like once I’ve got the idea, I increase the complexity or turn-up the ‘resolution’ until it’s a pain in the arse to finish and then have to really make myself continue with the overly complicated thing I’ve started mmhmm.

And I’ve brought home this shit for dinner..

A TV dinner!

I don’t expect much from it, but it’s easy and I’ve got bananas and fresh bread if I’m still feeling unfed after eating said TV dinner.

I also bought new deodorant today because I’m fuckin’ sick of her telling me I stink after just an hour or two of mowing and sweating..

I have been using Old Spice stick deodorant, but as nice as it seems to have deodorant that matches the aftershave it doesn’t say it’s ‘anti-perspirant’ on the label – just deodorant – and not only doesn’t stop sweating at all it doesn’t seem to deodorize either because like I said I go from freshly washed armpits to smelling with only an hour or so of work.

To be honest though, even if I smelled lovely she’d complain about my smoking stinking so pft – most hard to please woman I’ve ever had in my life!

Better hurry up and propose to me Babe, before someone else does and since I’ve already hit my limit on proposals myselfโฃ

Friday, 15th November 2019

Something about my changing the date of the post yesterday from 31 October to 1 November triggered an error for some reason and I didn’t have enough charge on my phone to sort it out last night when I went home.

Sorry – it’s fixed now though, obviously.

Goddam site there’s always some random bug or glitch in the code, plugins or server annoying me into having to fix shit. Few days ago it was the MySQL server needing updating, now it’s the PHP version haranguing me with a big red box telling me I need to update that shit.

MySQL is easy as tapping a button but PHP requires me to screenshot all the active modules in order to know which need to be activated once the new version is installed, so that can wait until later.

Wouldn’t mind creating a podcast you know, though not of this online diary shit – you’d have to have a theme or topic that interests the a group of people and you’d really need more than one person to create anything worth listening to.

Ask the podcasts I listen to that hold my attention at all usually have two hosts at a minimum, so their episodes have a conversational tone and those podcasts that do have only one person have a narrative tone that only works with a team of researchers and writers behind the script the guy’s reading.

Can’t just plug in a microphone and talk shit for an hour about nothing every week: though I’m sure I could manage that, nobody would wanna listen if there’s no structure or topic of interest driving it.

Whatever topics I’d be interested in would have to be primarily dark in nature, but not necessarily evil nasty rapists and serial killer shit: believe if or not I listen to more than just that because – believe it or not – that shit does actually get boring once you’ve listened to it a while: even with the ocean of horrible new crimes and cases happening every day around the world they all share similar aspects and traits so inevitably they all start sounding much of a muchness after a while.

There’s plenty of other darker-themed topics than just murder and perverts though, but mm as I said I’d need to actually get along with at least one other person for any podcast to happen and getting along with other people more than a short period of time has always been a challenge for yours truly ๐Ÿ™‚

1:16 PM

I bought more soap while in town, given they’re only $2.50 for those trendily packaged little bars and they smell better than the bland Fairy dish-washing liquid concentrate I’ve been using to wash myself.

Sadly they wash away fast and don’t last very long because they’re primarily olive-oil: apparently soap made with a high amount of oil is softer so doesn’t last like soap made with a higher lye content or something and I’d love to learn how to make soap, just for the fuck of it you know? Choose my own smells to go in it like lots of Rosemary or Lemongrass and anything else that doesn’t smell girly and have a kilo of the stuff I’d made myself all chopped into little misshapen chunks in the cupboard that’d last me ages before I needed to cook-up another batch.

Anyway today I got a masculine smelling bar scented with Lemongrass and Bergamot for myself and a feminine scented bar for her – with red tea and, something else. Can’t remember the second ingredient but it smells great: warm, soft, complicated and well, not actually much like tea at all..

Kind’ve, yeah I couldn’t even say it’s strawberry because it doesn’t quite smell like that either but it’s certainly nice and not chemical-smelling at all.

Speaking of soap, I didn’t wash at all this morning yet my armpits still smell like nothing but the antiperspirant I applied yesterday – imagine how good I’ll smell tomorrow, when I actually do wash before going out ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Now to kill another hour or so until the two batteries I’ve got plugged in have sucked-in at least enough charge to see me through until morning.

Spose I can go grab some more food from Woolies while I’m waiting.

I’ve gotta say, it’s much nicer just being in town generally when I’ve got the money to buy myself a coffee and though I could buy myself lunch as well, if I felt like it I don’t because I rarely even start getting hungry until around late afternoon and don’t normally eat anything but dinner.

4:44 PM

I’m not sure what I think of that Black Swan caramelized french onion dip: on the one hand it’s a bit lighter than standard french onion dips that were around when we were kids, but on the other it’s maybe sweeter than it really needs to be.

Perhaps the bigger question is why I still choose french onion dip at all when it almost always gives me heartburn and I would’ve preferred the brand in the larger, flatter tub because they’re 2 for $6 but that whole no fridge thing means one tub will likely go off before I finish it.

And I’ve just text this supervisor and asked him to let me know if anyone has a day off next week – anywhere from Blackheath right through to Lapstone – and this time he actually replied.

Said he’d keep me updated, though really, he can say whatever he likes: I’ve got no way of knowing whether there’s shifts up for grabs or not.

He could simply be throwing hours at a handful of his favourite cleaners while telling the rest of the casuals there’s no work at all at the moment, which I wouldn’t mind if I were one of the ones getting all the hours because fuck everyone else, but I am not the cute blonde chick or whoever it is getting all the shifts.

Matter of fact, I’m going to spend next week walking around town cleanly dressed and shaven handing local businesses my resume and asking for casual work – face to face – and I’ve actually just decided on doing that right now, moments ago, because I’ve got plenty of food, several pouches of my favourite tobacco, plenty of coffee and plenty of money – that makes now the best time to go get in cunts faces and demand work.

My girlfriend’s pregnant. I’ve already got a job but I need more work because we need things for the baby before it comes, “… she’s gone nuts decorating the spare bedroom; 4 months; we don’t know yet; boy or girl – long as it’s healthy; my first kid; she’s already got one; ugh so many *names* to argue about! …”

What the fuck right? I can easily bullshit my way through that.

It’s not like they’ll ever find out I’m lying and I can pretend there really is a woman and a baby coming to make myself feel and act like a desperate daddy-to-be: I’ve only gotta play the part a few minutes at a time while I’m talking to each employer – I can do that.

I’ve even got fucking awesome smelling soap but the little fuckers wash away fast..

“Where’s the soap?”

‘Yes, doesn’t it..’

Saturday, 16th November 2019

Mmm.. there’ll be blackberries on these soon and it’ll be time for my annual stomach cramps after eating as many as I can stuff down my throat.

~6:30 PM

I’m itchy.

I’m always itchy after whip-snipping and I’ll still be peeling little bits of grass off me in the morning, though I didn’t go all out on productivity today: not least of all because I made the mistake of dismantling her new pruners while she was in town – planning to sharpen, oil and tighten them a bit – then finding they did not go back together nearly as easy as they came apart.

I’d already offered to sharpen them and she’d already told me ‘Don’t wreck ’em! They’re my new ones’ so while she was out for an hour getting her hair cut and buying pet supplies, I spent almost that entire time shittin’ myself thinking that fucking thing would never go back together at all!

Literally wet with sweat I was before suddenly I tried inserting the spring a different way and YES – it finally worked ๐Ÿ˜

Beyond that minor engineering distraction I did snip and clear more of the blanket of vines and weeds that need to be removed though the whip-snip is only good for the leaves and leaves a mass of stringy stems behind that we’ve referred to as ‘spaghetti’ because it looks like a whole mass of thousands of strands all matted around the ground, though hair is probably a more fitting comparison – the shit’s a pain in the arse to remove so even once I’d found a more efficient way of cutting it back and got stuck into the task it took around an hour to clear around two square meters enough to finally see the soil underneath it all.

Certainly I was easily distracted though, by her and lunch and her and installing an outdoor shade for the window, and her, and smoking and her – you get the idea there – and my output of actual work is slightly unpredictable but then again I don’t only go over to keep the garden under control, but to spend time with her.

It’s a 50/50 thing far as priorities go but honestly, even if I wasn’t distracted and spending half my time trying to rub against her I’m still very easily distracted and would probably switch focus on something other than work regularly anyway BUT, when I do start work I’ll usually continue uninterrupted for reasonable chunks of time.

The exception is times time today when I don’t feel like I’m getting anywhere because no matter how much I whip-snip or rip vines out, there’s still more – layers on layers on layers and ask I wanna do is remove the shit but there’s always another fuckin’ layer.

That feeling of getting nowhere inhibits my productivity, but I found a definitive if not labour-intense way of removing almost everything in one pass..

Huge garden sheers.

Growing all over the ground like hair as I’ve explained, I’ve ended-up literally shearing the ground like a sheep but much more slowly, cutting right to the ground then raking everything away in one big ball of crap..

The shit at the bottom is the mass of cut vines and weeds sliced off the ground above – which is nearly down to bare dirt afterwards.

Don’t get me wrong this method is still tedious and hard work, but doing it this way means I can actually strip it back to almost bare dirt with only two steps: intensive clipping at ground level then raking the whole mess away.

I haven’t finished with todays’ update but it’s getting late and I wanna have something to eat then carve a bit before I go to sleep so I’ll have to finish this tomorrow.

*…

But here’s the cockatoo I stopped on the way back with some shopping, who I explicitly opened my fresh bread to pull out a slice and feed..

Feeding a cockatoo is like getting a gremlin wet: the second I pull out that slice of bread and tear-off a chunk to hand feed him it’s like I must’ve blinked and suddenly there were four birds – all waddling around looking up at me waiting for their bit of bread.

Feed one of those four and there’s suddenly eight birds all waddling around looking up at you..

Like the Meeseeks from that episode of Rick & Morty – just godamn materializing outta thin air!

11:20 PM

I also brought my knife sharpener home today finally – having thought I’d lost it along the way until she told me it was just sitting in her shed the whole time and I already ‘renewed’ her kitchen knives so there’s no reason I needed to leave it there until they start losing their edge again and I can finally have sharp knives myself without needing to use-up all the silicon carbide sandpaper I’ve bought.

Like any well maintained tools, sharp knives are incomparably nicer to use than blunt ones.

She’s sliced the tip of her own finger-nail off twice in the last two weeks or so since I did those kitchen knives, which is confirmation I honed them to my usual standard and though she’s told me they’re very sharp like that’s a bad thing because they’re more dangerous, I’m sure she notices the difference in how smoothly they cut while she’s slicing-up vegetables or salad or anything else she’d preparing for dinners – she just doesn’t inform me of the positives of having bladed tools that do what they’re meant to do more efficiently ๐Ÿ˜

She’s always been incapable of delivering positive reinforcement across the board though, so I learnt long ago that as long as she’s not screeching or mooing about the thing in question that’s as close to a compliment as I’m getting from the woman.

Sunday, 17th November 2019

Dinner tonight was a savoury mince with a good amount of vegetables and a tiny bit of curry, though it didn’t taste like curry which is fine with me since I’m not a big fan-boy of Indian anything, let alone food, but it tasted like a normal savoury mince which was excellent – I shoveled it down in just a few minutes.

Today I was at Woman #7s’ again for more of the neverending garden/yard maintenance and again cranked-up the whipper-snipper to wipe out more of the overgrown plant buildup and I actually got something done today – due at least in part to a mid-morning blowout that saw me snatch the petrol trimmer up and storm out back with the shits.

Easy to resist distraction when you don’t want to talk to anyone, though my pissies didn’t last very long and we were back in the house talking normally within an hour as we both installed a new wall mounted bracket and smart TV she’d bought this morning for the spare room.

I’ve still got no idea what triggered her to shift into a psychotic rage of course – one minute she’s telling me about a staff member at a local business in town being rude and snarky, then she’s suddenly goin’ apeshit, though it could’ve been about my proposal to fabricate the scenario of the pregnant woman and baby on the way since she certainly wasn’t impressed by that, though that may not have been what triggered her to lose her shit at all: I still have no idea at all what it was she actually got the shits about, but she ramped herself up from calm to spittin’ blood fast as snapping your fingers – she always does anytime she takes exception to something, and I’m almost always unaware why.

Like I said though we get over our little differences in opinion pretty fast, so whenever an argument occurs it’s typically isolated to just a few minutes of angry that’s forgotten quickly and then it’s in the rear view mirror.

It’s actually past 1:00 AM im monday morning so I’ll either finish this or mixe on to something else to write tomorrow, because I’m too tired to articulate well anyhoo ๐Ÿ˜ต

Here was desert though, quickly before I go: home-made blueberry pancakes with ice-cream which was also delicious and I even got a slice of quiche on the way out the door with bacon and a layer of cheese melted over the top!..

๐Ÿ˜Š

I didn’t snap a pic of the quiche, but she correctly reminded me I’d previously said her quiche was my “least favourite meal” of hers, but I must’ve been on drugs when I said that because that slice I had tonight was fucking amazing!

Today she also started the new 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle she’d ordered last week that arrived yesterday – a cute christmas scene of a cartoony-drawn town square covered in snow and busy with animals and people in the background doing all kinds of different activities – and I don’t know what it is, but I just adore the fact she does jigsaw puzzles ๐Ÿ˜

I don’t know why, but I find it incredibly endearing: to visualize her calmly and quietly digging around in the box full of peices, then start adding to the puzzles image from the outside in ๐Ÿ˜

Complex, exquisite woman you are โฃ

I should’ve looked for the piece with the top half of that skinny little dog while I was there, but I was ‘itchy’ to get outside and have a smoke so I could get the snipper primed and ready for its morning of full-on weed annihilation ๐Ÿ˜

*…

Monday, 18th November 2019

I’m donating my headphones to Woman #7s new smart TV situation, because she needs a pair for night-time listening and I bought these last time I started working when I was cashed-out and got them in the same shopping outing that saw me purchase the digital piano, the $400 speakers, Bluetooth connector, stool, stand .. at that point I was already in for $1,500-odd so when I said I might need some headphones to stop the neighbours going insane listening to me practice and the guy’s suggested these Audio Technicas for $289 I said “Sure, may as well.”

Best headphones I’ve ever heard.

2:24 PM

I’m in the WISE office to update my resume and print it out while my “job search” clothes are home hanging in the bathroom to dry and was thinking earlier – this online diary was always meant to be a story-format journal, but I keep reverting to a standard diary which isn’t the best but it’s so much easier to maintain than having to write with pop.

Anyhow, I’ve decided tomorrow’s a better day to be door-knocking around town for work and wasn’t planning to leave the flat today until I realized that to door-knock I’ll need copies of my resume ready to go and if I wait until tomorrow to do that well, better to come in and sort it today than wait.

I had planned to start dropping off my resume today but thought better of that idea when I considered that if I were a business owner, I’d probably be pretty distracted and busy on Monday – being the first day of the new week – so decided tomorrow, Wednesday and Thursday would logically have to be better days.

I also have decided to drop the pregnant-woman pretense after Woman #7 ranted at me about how unattractive and offensive that whole idea is, though I’ve still no idea at all what’s offensive about it: if it increases my chance of acquiring additional work even a little, surely it’s a good thing since more work is what I want?

Like I told her too, proclaiming I’ve a child on the way with my pregnant girlfriend would serve as a way for potential employers to instantly relate to me, with most being parents themselves who’d remember the lead-up to their kids arrival, so if nothing else prospective employers would be able to empathize with me right off the bat without needing to know anything about me at all.

The struggling father-to-be doing his best to do the right thing by his woman and baby: who wouldn’t find that a good reason to consider me before other applicants?

Sounded like a pretty fucking good idea to me, but she told me it was yeah offensive and asked why I can’t just be a genuine person, to which I pointed out I genuinely want more work: anything that’ll better my chance of getting more work is surely good whether it’s bullshit or not and that my actual situation isn’t nearly as good as the dad-to-be story I’d made up.

Anyway we’re binning that manipulation โฃ

Pity though: it’d be so easy to pretend I’ve got that pregnant girlfriend at home – constantly emotional and saying she feels frumpy; throwing up randomly and always running to the toilet with a full bladder..

Oh well.

Save the energy and just go home, shave, wash my hair and be an average, honest joe ๐Ÿ™„

Excellent juxtaposition of both the clean soap and clean shirt I know and a generally good photo ๐Ÿ˜

The soap is one those huge bars with hemp-seed oil from a supermarket and just as I was about to plop it in the water I had the revelation that I really don’t need to be slopping-up a bar of soap the size of a house brick, so took it to the kitchen where I quartered it with a cooking knife.

This leaves three additional pieces in the cupboard with that chunk in the sink being quite large enough to use while being small enough to fit better in the soap-rack.

6:20 PM

My goodness, that’s twice today I’ve washed my armpits and private, ahh unmentionables.

Twice in one day!

No risk of turning into an OCD weirdo just yet but mm, that’s pretty damn clean for a dood who doesn’t even have hot water for showers and has to wash with a cloth and sink of warm soapy water ๐Ÿ˜œ

Seems I underestimated the hidden value of nice soap opposed to dishwashing liquid: the novelty of having nice smelling soap means I’ve been more inclined to want to go to the trouble of washing, while dishwashing liquid – by comparison – has not much smell and is just not .. yeah no novelty value.

Course nice, potently scented soap also translates to clothes that smell just as good as I now do but I was already using a lime, mint and sage liquid hand-soap to do my clothes thus already knew how good my hand-washed clothes smell, but these bars of soap smell even better than the pump-bottle stuff.

7:00 PM

My supervisor just rang while I was in the middle of shaving – looks like I’m working in the morning ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Springwood Primary this time, which is excellent: I’ve never cleaned that so it’s a brand new site to me and won’t be boring ๐Ÿ‘

Better get ready I spose and cut-off the coffee drinking, switch to warm milk the until bedtime, which won’t be far off now I’ve gotta get up early.

Not only is that a $30/hour for the 4 hour shift, it’s a 4:30AM start so I’ll be able to get the alarm for 2:00AM and get the 3:50AM train – a small sleep bonus, but a bonus no less and I’m well rested enough to still do the clean even if I don’t get any sleep tonight at all, though I’d obviously prefer I did ๐Ÿค‘

Tuesday, 19th November 2019

I wanna update but I’m getting too tired to really use my brain though I think I slept last night, but not enough to be sure if it.

A flawless blood red Rose in the dead of night for you, Beautiful โฃ

Anyway the cleaner at Springwood Primary sure had an awful lot to say about Mohammad the Supervisor – none of it good.

She even called him a monkey at one point and she had nothing much nice to say about the woman I was covering for though having seen the dismal quality of the second cleaner’s work because I cleaned her sections since she’s off sick, I have to agree: everywhere I went tables looked as though they hadn’t been wiped at all in at least a week, vacuuming exposed a build-up of little bits of crap on the carpet behind teachers desks and chairs that shouldn’t be there and the boys toilets? The toilets smelled better before I mopped than after: the mop head – normally red – was literally black and dark grey and good god it stank because she obviously never bothered to rinse or wash it at all; I doubt she even used clean water when mopping around the urinals and inside stalls.

There’s brand new mop heads in the main cleaners cupboard – all she has to do is bin that nasty black one then screw-in a new one but hasn’t and yeah all the rooms of this cleaner who was away were shocking, really – I’m surprised the teachers and other staff haven’t complained, though I’ve really got no idea they haven’t.

Nope – still too tired to write.

I’ll edit today’s update later.

3:49 PM

Before I do go and lay down owing to being tired owing to the maaaaybe one hour sleep I got combined with the fact I’ve been up since 2:00AM, I’ve gotta take a photo of something very ugly but equally cool..

Exceptional quality English tobacco.

Yeah see it’s quite ugly indeed, but since I was in Springwood this morning anyway I figured I’ll stop in at the tobacconist there and just see if they still sell the large pouch of my favourite tobacco of them all: Old Holborn.

Our tobacconist here in Katoomba stopped carrying the big pouch years ago now because it wasn’t selling, but I’m certain that’s due to its price more than any other factor.

Today, this large 50g pouch of this exceptional English tobacco cost ne $96 – hugely expensive, but I decided worth it not only because it’ll mean not running out of smokes in the foreseeable future but to know I’ve so much of my all-time favourite ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿ˜›

Oh yes, I guess I managed to scrape together enough energy to write about that huh?

Weird ๐Ÿ™‚

Wednesday, 20th November 2019

Today started at 2:00AM for another morning shift at Springwood Primary although – since I was absolutely sleep-deprived from not sleeping Monday night – I managed to fall asleep within an hour last night and got about four hours so wasn’t tired this morning at all.

Soap of the day: Manuka Honey and Pear.

I’ve gotta fix my phones’ on-screen keyboard actually, or use the bluetooth one: for some reason the , button has been replaced by a and it’s annoying me a bit.

So much drama packed into this morning’s clean I don’t even know how to order it, with the woman – Vicky – who’s assigned as the permanent cleaner at the school proving herself to be not only more mentally corrupted than I would’ve thought yesterday morning but a snitchy bitch too.

When the train pulled into Springwood station.

The shift starts at 4:30AM, but owing to the train not arriving until 4:30AM and the 10-15 minute walk to Springwood Primary I have got to work the past two mornings at around 4:45AM.

Upon arrival for the first shift yesterday I was greeted by the other cleaner who let me into the empty school then spent about twenty minutes ranting and bitching about Mohammad – that’s fine everybody seems to do that and though I’m terribly disinterested in other people’s bullshit I know that if I listen to their whinging and act like I care they seem happy with that, since most people don’t even care whether you care, they just want a pair of ears to yap at and it builds a rapport if you listen so they feel like they know you better.

All good, it’s the first time Inte met the woman and she’s gotta get it out, so I listen and nod and periodically ask questions and all the crap that makes me seem like a good listener who’s on her side.

This morning I walk in the school and she’s started again, repeating herself on all the same complaints about not being paid for the overtime she’s been doing, about how understaffed the school is and about what a bully and a sneak our supervisor is and though I’d agree he’s a shifty fucker, I’ve never got the impression he’s any kind of bully.

More like a worm who makes excuses for being lazy and bad at his job is how he’s come across to me, but that’s me: maybe he’s a bully with her: I don’t give a shit, really I just want her to stop talking so I can start cleaning and get some of the work behind me fast enough to be able to have a smoke without worrying about being behind in what I’ve gotta do.

But what do I have to do?

Yesterday I vacuumed half the rooms while she vacuumed the others, and she’s told me not to bother wiping the desks because ‘There’s not enough time so we’re just doing basics this morning‘ which struck me as strange since I’ve always considered wiping desks people use to be one of the basics but that’s fine: I’m not responsible for the ongoing cleaning the site and the regular woman I’m replacing – Jane – will be back in a day or two.

Also, since I’m a casual replacement cleaner I just generally don’t have to worry about any site much: as a casual nobody expects you to care – you’re like a tourist to the sites you clean and even if casuals do nothing at all, it’s the permanent cleaners assigned to the site who know it best and they’re the ones who have to answer to our supervisor’s when periodic QM’s or quality control inspections are carried-out on their site.

Nonetheless, I like to do at least enough so the people who work there are happy the place looks and feels clean, and this always means vacuuming, wiping, toilets and bins are done – at a bare minimum.

I’ve gotta get something to eat hang on – that supreme pizza slice and apple danish I got from Bakers Delight for breakfast are giving me heartburn ๐Ÿคฎ

I’ve also gotta try and squeeze-in some preliminary shaping of the chunk if redgum I’m mindlessly carving into a large heart – weighs a reasonable amount compared to all the tiny things I usually carve..

I wanted to do something larger because I like how hard the timber is: let’s me carve heaps of detail in and the only other thing I’ve started with this particular wood – which is just standard firewood because it’s already very well dried so the shape will remain stable – and that’s got plenty of detailed lines, so something 4ร— larger will allow much more detailed linework to fit on the piece.

One day I’ll carve something not love-related – an animal or random object, shit anything but a heart.

I tried a boat and even that wound up being shaped like a heart.

Man that honey and pear soap smells good – even from a meter away and in its box I can smell it.

Now I gotta piss..

Thursday, 21 November 2019

Right, so I feel asleep before coming back to this as usual last night and only woke up an hour ago but that missing nights sleep is all made-up for.

I was going to go into town this morning but whatever – I’m due to wash clothes and have a half dozen different bars of soap to wash ’em with so I’ll do that today instead and maybe finish yesterday’s entry while I’m here.

2:12 PM

Goodness, it’s super smoky outside: there’s a haze over town that’s well white but clearly smoke and the sunlight is tinted a reddish sepia tone.

The weather app said fires north would cause smoke to be floating around the whole of Sydney but the wasn’t much haze two hours ago when I got up and looked out the window – now it’s as thick as fog.

I love the smell of bushfire smoke and don’t mind at all..

There’s still nothing close to us, with only that small fire in Woodford that’s been classified Under Control for over a week anyway and the only big fire is the yellow one at the top of the map which has continually changed from Out of Control to Under Control and is currently marked Being Controlled, though that’s in Wollemi National Park and a long, long way away from Katoomba.

Even Woodford – though it looks close – is a half hour drive and four country towns way and in the lower mountains so no threat to us in the upper mountains.

4:04 PM

My clothes are hanging to dry so I sit down to continue carving something and already I’m over the large heart and moved onto something else: a fish.

A fat little fish with an unhappy expression.

I’ve no idea why a fish, but the ya go.

I’ll make his fins droopy to match his face, though I’m unsure how thick he should be.

Thick as my dick, perhaps, which is looking just as sad and droopy as the fish – though it is pretty hot today and I am carving its counterpart with a razor-sharp knife ๐Ÿ™ƒ

Anyway back to it.

That’s fine, I’ve said what I’ve gotta say about it.

Time to test-wash this honey and pear soap, anyhoo, which smells like that clear Pears soap I’m sure everyone’s used at one point or another.

Friday, 22nd November 2019

It’s off to Blaxland again Monday and Tuesday mornings and though it’s an hour earlier plus the first train of the day, least the other cleaners at Blaxland High aren’t insane, I think, though that fat grubby guy who talks non-stop about that Russian chick – whose name I can’t even remember now – seems pretty unhinged, the other two seem normal if not sick of their jobs.

Why I don’t wanna go permanent: being permanently assigned to a site gets really old really quick and you end up feeling chained to a 5-day work routine that pays $18/hr so you’re working more hours for far less money.

Casual, I’ve only gotta work 60% the hours they do for more money, the only downside is I’m not guaranteed the work but if you reliably show up and do that work well there’s usually more work thrown at you.

Mm it’s like, as a casual you’re judged on your performance and if it’s good you get more work and more days off.

As a permanent, you can be a morose slob who never shows up on time and does a shit job and though you get guaranteed hours you get much less for those hours and have to earn all your days off.

Permanents get sick days too, but I was never once sick while I was permanent and only had a day off on occasion to annoy my co-workers when they pissed me off – I’d just turn my alarm off and not bother showing up a few days in a row, see if they wanna bitch about my cleaning after doing it all themselves for a while and they never had a word to say when I did return days later either ๐Ÿ™‚

Casual is better, long as you perform.

12:44 PM

I’m at WISE and both the blonde chick and the other manager chick have told me the other two are right to push me to accept taking permanent work if it’s offered, though – wait I know their names.. Cathy and Nicole – I tried reiterating to them that working less hours for the same money is obviously better, mm.

It’s still hypothetical of course since I haven’t been offered a permanent shift, but like I said above it’s also kinda beside the point: I’d rather perform well and have a few casual hours a week than get sucked into being chained to a site every day doing exactly the same thing in exactly the same building with exactly the same person or people – that’s how work gets to be something I hate having to do because my threshold for boredom is pretty low.

You also get more appreciation filling in for sick cleaners, and more thank yous and more of a hero complex because they know they’re better off with you covering their co-worker than some other casual who either doesn’t show up or doesn’t do much while they’re there.

As long as I’m getting enough hours to stop me starving at this point I’m quite happy doing 2-4 shifts per week, yet they wanna doom me to being buried alive in one site, full-time, all the time.

Course it’s inevitable anyway: the company would rather pay permanent workers than casuals, and they started pushing at me to lock myself into sites last time I worked with them.

One of them’s having what smells like spaghetti for lunch – I’ve got a roast beef TV dinner, bananas and butter to take home and eat; why is it whatever someone else is eating always seems better than what I actually choose for myself.. I could’ve picked spaghetti TV dinner too, but didn’t.

I’m using their computers to type this out, and I’ve still gotta finish Wednesdays entry though I dunno: though my phone’s at 100% I don’t have much on the one remaining battery I’ve got at home so I can’t really be farting around with the touchscreen all afternoon if I want it to last until I get to a power-point tomorrow mm.

So this might be the last update until I’ve got fully charged battery packs.

3:52 PM

Awesome – now my drug dealer wants his money ‘urgently’, which I’ve told him just isn’t possible at all because if I had anybody who was reliably “there” for me I wouldn’t be living in this shithole alone: I’d be living in a nice house growing vegetables with a woman I love, having nice dinners and going down on her every chance I get, not eating TV dinners and fucking my own hand.

Told him the best that’s happening is $100 next week then $200 the week after that – which will settle the bill – but that’ll leave me short for the next two weeks.

Building and building and building – this is how Port Arthur happened: one little stress stacked on another on another on another then BANG – you’ve spent your paycheck on a handgun and are blowing fuckers away at a local shopping mall until the cops show up and put three in your chest.

Speaking of bullshit, I’ve really gotta start sorting things I want to keep and packing it in boxes so I can start looking for a share place and leave this shitty little box in the dust.

Never wanna live in a unit or block of flats again – I grew up in a box like this then consequently spent my adult life in houses with pets and a back-yard and hate living in a dog-kennel like this, though even yeah – I’ve walked through other blocks of privately rented flats in town as a shortcut to cross from one street to another and they’re not much better than this houso shit – the hallways and stairwells still smell like cat piss, and they’re just ugly places to live.

Somewhere with a washing machine, electricity, working hot water and a human being who’s female, so I’m not so isolated when I’m at home.

And not for any romatic purposes but because the dynamic between a bunch of doods living together just doesn’t work: you need at least one woman in any place to turn it into a home because men just aren’t very good at feathering a nest at all and every woman I’ve lived with – in a relationship or not – has appreciated having a male to mow the lawn, fix leaky taps, unblock drains and all those other household handyman things most men pickup over the years.

Think that sounds sexist, whatever – it’s the truth and it functions better than 2+ men in a house where none of them mow the lawn at all because none of them give a shit about the lawn because they’re men and don’t give a shit how well maintained the place is: fuckers just end-up sitting in front of a playstation surrounded by last weekends beer cans or eating pizza while they watch sports on a television screen because they’re too fat to actually participate.

Women cause men to care about the state of the living conditions in a place because women do care about that place being a home which triggers men to get off their arses and do something.

Not to say women can’t mow their own lawns or fix shit that needs fixing around the house because they can and do, just that I’ve never met one who’d prefer to do it themselves.

Best go oven-heat my TV Dinner and I spose I can safely eat those Honey Jumbles now, plus call an end to the days update: 34% and I’ve probably got another full charge on my battery but want that for listening to podcasts until bed and to not get up with a flat phone in the morning.

I’m sure I can find someone decent and trustworthy who wouldn’t mind $200/week for a spare bedroom or maybe $250 for a granny-flat, some company when I’m there and a housemate who’ll keep the garden mowed and manicured as well as any household maintenance taken care of.

Someone who also has a job so understands the need for sleep, or if they don’t have a job are quiet enough to not be up all night making noise, someone without kids preferably and in Katoomba somewhere – closer to the train station if possible.

Wouldn’t have to be a woman either I guess: an elderly homeowner who struggles to maintain their house and yard would be fine, though really a woman around my own age would have more in common with me than an old man or woman – who’d be a generation-gap different to myself – because someone my age grew-up in the same social ‘atmosphere’ that I did and will have absorbed the same social influences and attitudes.

Yes.

I could pay more for a granny-flat once I’ve gone permanent/full-time but $250 would be my cap until then.

Have a good night Lurkers! ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Saturday, 23rd November 2019

You know as much as I’d hate to be a librarian – so many books to sort constantly, day in, day out – can you imagine how organized their houses must be?

I can’t even find a fucking teaspoon when I want one..

10:37 AM

I can still taste that beer I drank two nights ago – god alcohol is nasty shit. Absolutely the cheapest drug on earth, yet people convince themselves if they pay enough it’s somehow sophisticated to become dehydrated and delirious.

11:30 AM

I gotta write whatever I’ve gotta write while I’m out and have access to power points at multiple locations – once I go home my phone doesn’t get charged again until tomorrow, when I’ll have to spend at least the afternoon at the library charging a battery and the phone to make sure I’ve got enough charge for my alarm Monday morning.

1:24 PM

The Wildplant Nursery has a stall outside Coles that’s been there since Thursday I’m told and though I saw them there yesterday I was in a hurry so didn’t stop to say hello.

I did have time today however so I stopped in and as I was taking a nice non-invasive photo of the t-shirt hanging im the glass st the back Francis has asked me to take a photo of Verity and herself at the stall for the newsletter, which I did and then emailed it to Verity.

Took several photos actually, since it’s hard to get people to synchronize smiling for the camera while also looking natural and told them to just carry on doing whatever like I’m not taking photos – which they did.

Photos of people naturally doing whatever they’re doing always look better than photos of people posing, though I managed to get one of the pair of them looking happy as well, I just won’t bother posting both because there’s no need.

I also gave Verity the bar of vanilla bean soap I’d bought but mm – I liked the smell though it’s too soft a smell to counter my own sweaty summer smells and I’m pretty happy with the half dozen bars of soap I’ve already got at home.

2:56 PM

I’m still sweating good god what is wrong with me – rushing down the hill to Woolies for a single pack of Honey Jumbles then back up to Coles just to kiss arse geez.

Mental illness, that shit is.

Oo look, Old-Brian is here.. reading the paper with his super-bi-focals..

*…

6:44 PM

From this..

To this..

With nothing but a pocket knife; sandpaper; oil from my face.

Sunday, 24th November 2019

Here I thought the library opened at 11:00AM and shut at 3:00AM on Sundays, so I’ve come into town a full hour before there’s even seating available, so I’ll just wait in the car-park and hand around the shopping center like a homeless cunt.

A white rose, because I never really know whether we’re on or off from one moment to another so red seems like a leap, though tomorrow it might not be.

Not like I haven’t spent many a morning waiting here for shit to happen, though that was two years ago now.

Matter of fact you’d be surprised how comfortable you can get to be with a large, cavernous empty space once you’ve spent enough time in it.

Course if I’m waiting around until midday the library’s as good a place as any to be charging my batteries and it’s a lovely, mist-shrouded day outside: spitting rain lightly but not enough to get wet and visibility is super low.. see if I can get a photo though it’ll be no prize competition given it’ll be of the arse-end of a supermarket..

11:15 AM

Yeah right, so my mother texts to put-on the usual feigned interest with a list of questions, and like always it’s not about actually wanting to know, but digging around to try and find out what’s going wrong.

The first text she asks ‘How are you? How’s work?’

I tell her “Work’s fine๐Ÿ‘”, so she only replies ‘Cool’ then moves onto the next question, ‘R u you getting many shifts?’

I tell her no, “But I’m getting almost $700 for 16 hours work so I don’t need many” so she moves on to remind me ‘Don’t forget that’ll affect your rent!’ and my final response, “I’ll be moving out of there as soon adde I’ve got the regular work” she adds her final reply, telling me I’d ‘Br crazy to move out of secure accommodation. If you lost your job in future at least you’d have a roof over your head’ and that’s where I realize I was sick of the conversational tone three texts ago and stop.

Amongst the podcasts I’ve been listening to lately, there’s several times you’ll here one of the hosts – in talking about dysfunctional relationships – that there are people who encourage or accept you and people who who only want to drag you down and keep you there.

My mother has always been the latter, most likely borne of the fact that she’s had a generally miserable life and after a lifetime of said misery she only wants to hear the bad that’s going on and the misery other people might be experiencing.

Right throughout my childhood, the word that most commonly came out of her mouth was ‘Can’t’ – we can’t go out; you can’t do that Jason; I can’t do that Jason – and that’s the most dominant lesson I remember being taught about life, is that it’s much easier to say you can’t do something that to just do it – easier to find an excuse for why you can’t, than to ever actually do anything much at all.

Then I find you and am confronted with a woman who doesn’t know the meaning of the word “can’t” and will not accept it from me: even with my general procrastination and intermittent excuses for being an unmotivated or lazy arsehole, you have got me off my arse so much more than I ever have or would without you – look at all that’s happened since we metโฃ

YOU have changed me for the better because you are my Oracle: don’t ever leave me with no choice but to leave youโฃ

I think I’ve probably cracked open the shell and identified one cog in the mechanism that makes this woman so endlessly frustrating, fascinating and irresistible to me, now I think about it.

Monday, 25th November 2019

Mmm reckon I got a solid 4 hours sleep just then, though I’ve no way of knowing, exactly – how long it took to actually fall asleep is unknown but it would’ve been under an hour.

As I’ve said before, it’s terrible when you don’t get any sleep at all but still have to get up and go to work – like a glitch in the system; that thought-loop you end-up in where merely knowing you need to sleep and haven’t drifted-off yet sees you thinking then stressing about the fact that you NEED to fall asleep, so you don’t because you’re so stressed about still being awake.. a thought-loop like I said, that snowballs until you finally hear the alarm and have to force yourself to get up and get ready. UGH!

Not last night though – I’ve slept fine.

And here’s last night’s dinner, because it was delicious..

And god bless the end of all that vegetarian nonsense ๐Ÿ˜Ž

I might be at serious risk of growing to like vegetables – if I keep it up ๐Ÿ˜

9:20 AM

There was a bit of excitement at the high school was morning: at around 2:30 in the morning the alarm system was tripped for two of the classrooms in one of the back blocks of the school.

At the front office, eggs were thrown at the windows and nothing else was known until one of the cleaners opened all their rooms and found this ..

A break and enter, with vandalism!

None of us touched anything and has to wait for first the caretaker to get there and then police to find out whether we’d be able to go ahead and clean those two rooms, but the cops finally said to leave it as is so they could come out and do their CSI and and check the windows and whatever else for fingerprints.

We leave at 8:30AM before school starts off course, though students will have some excitement too when the cops get there later to process the scene ๐Ÿš”

The strange thing about it is the room they broke into was on the second floor and only the drywall kicked the photo was damaged: no broken windows, nothing else was disturbed.

The classroom was just an ordinary classroom with desks and chairs too: my guess that it was a targeted attack by someone with a specific gripe against whichever teachers room it is sounds right, yet the teachers desk in both rooms weren’t disturbed at all – you’d think if they were pissy enough to break into a particular teacher’s classroom, they’d be pissy enough to trash the teachers desk right?

Tuesday, 26th November 2019

A reminder of what sucked about being homeless, with some doubtlessly mentally ill rubbish on the doorstep of the train station waiting room, and at first I did wonder whether it was bags of garbage dumped under a blanket, then a dead body but no such luck of anything that exciting..

Course I never cared little enough about myself to sleep on the doorstep of a public building: living in Katoomba for years when I allowed myself to become homeless I already knew of private places I could sleep that were secure enough to roll my sleeping-bag up each morning and leave it there pretty much permanently and because it was a secluded/private area I could go back and roll out my bed, have a few cones and update the site then fall asleep without anyone knowing I was there – I even set my alarm for 5:00AM every weekday and left it turned off on the weekend – I had a routine.

Yes, it’s remarkable how easy it is to judge septic looking losers lying in filthy blankets in public even after being homeless myself: primarily because I never lost my ego or self-worth so never valued myself as little as this individual clearly has.

It’s also a choice that person is making to have zero responsibility at the expense of living like that and probably started with them choosing heroin, ice or both over everything and everyone else so while I don’t feel compelled to spit on the creature, I don’t feel at all sorry for it either.

Don’t feel anything at all matter of fact: they’ve allowed themselves to become a golem in any normal persons eyes because they chose to and between the free food and other services for the homeless and their never having to pay a cent in rent, why even Centrelink payments last a full fortnight so you end up consistently having money without doing anything at all, except putting up with being uncomfortable.

Not enough money to be comfortable at all, but enough for smokes and the consumables that aren’t provided by the aforementioned services.

9:49 PM

The break and enter yesterday morning didn’t conclude with any kind of satisfying conclusion: though police were at the school in the afternoon looking for fingerprints and processing the sad excuse for a crime scene I’m sure they’d rather be investigating actual crimes opposed to a broken drywall in a school.

Office staff claimed they hadn’t heard about who did it, but also admit the cops would most likely be tight-lipped even if they did already know, but the chick in the office was off the same opinion as I was: that it would’ve been a targeted ‘attack’ at a particular teacher – just not a very good one, obviously, since I’m pretty sure that teacher doesn’t care about fifty bucks worth of drywall and the hole im the wall was covered with plywood by the end of the day.

On second thought, that teacher might care about the fact someone has made a mess of the temporary walling because it’s a substitute for the teacher but on third thought the fact intruders didn’t have the balls to even mess up the teachers desk while they were sneaking around under the cover of darkness means they’re basically cowards anyway.

On third thought.. third thought; doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue huh.

As for actual work today, I’ve filled-in for Andrew these last two mornings: the fat wheezy one who mumbles near constantly and walked directly into Sandra – the only permanent female cleaner of the four – and knocked her over hard enough that took several days off – and she was the one I was covering last time.

So I got all his work done with over an hour to spare yesterday, because I like to rush the first half of the shift so there’s progressively less to do in the second half.

Andrew though, and we’ll call him Fat-Andrew so there’s a descriptive identifier attached to his name for future reference, Fat-Andrew is the kinda guy who likes to take his time doing everything and any chance to talk about anything or lean-in close to whisper all the shit that’s wrong with the other cleaners is a good reason to stop work completely far as he’s concerned.

He obviously doesn’t like Sandra – the chick he bashed into a few weeks ago – but he’s also whispered to me that he doesn’t like the head-cleaner, because his ‘Head’s so far up his own arse’ and ‘he’s more pro-school than the company’ – whatever that means.

So imagine my delight to discover Fat-Andrew back at work this morning and wanting to walk and talk me through the complicated journey that is his work routine.

We started with all the toilets in the school both agreeing he would scrub the toilets, wipe the sinks and empty garbage bins while I came in after him and mopped the floor and though I didn’t want to spend any time in his company at all, I realized quickly, with him being so painfully slow to do everything, I’ll spend more time waiting outside the toilets for him to finish than actually talking to him which could mean a very relaxed morning for me and that’s how it went until about 6:00AM when I received a text announcing coffee was about to happen in the science staff-room so I immediately left Fat-Andrew, the mop and the bucket right where they were to go upstairs.

Inside the science staff-room there was only the head cleaner and myself and I assume we’re the only two who’re into coffee because none of the other three are ever there for this morning coffee, which has already become routine for me after just a handful of shifts.

While sitting there drinking our coffees, I’ve googled Springwood High to see how far from a train station it is, while Head-Cleaner asked for the little laminated barcode square he’d printed at home for me on Sunday night – to use with the new iPad ‘Kiosk’ the company is trialing.

12:26 PM

I’ve just text this supervisor, who’s starting to warm to me apparently, and told him that if I could get twenty hours per week as a casual *regularly* I wouldn’t need to worry too much about going permanent because I’d be making about $700/week just for one shift daily, then tried to explain that it’s only the travel-time to sites further down the mountain that stop me being available for both shifts each day but it’s not an easy thing to explain to a guy who uses pigeon english and only as a second language.

I also explained that if he wants to fabricate shifts for me to go out to schools and simply wipe surfaces that badly need dusting, that I’m tall enough and fast enough to do that and that I used to clean shop-front windows so I’m slick as shit with a squeegee.

7:07 PM

I’ve got no time to update this evening – being on a train back from Springwood I’ve still gotta get home and time to wash my shirts quickly and hang them to dry, eat whatever crap is there then go to bed.

But without even bringing my id card to Springwood Primary this afternoon I’ve been given the master keys to the entire school..

One of which is the control key for the security system which is admittedly cool but means I’ve gotta wait for every last fucking teacher to leave before I can alarm the place and leave myself and head for the train.

Anyway Inte gos be back there at 4:00 AM so there’s only enough time to slow my brain down, not speed it up again.

9:00 AM

I did not get even an hours sleep last night – in fact I got no sleep at all, so now I’ve been awake since 6:00AM yesterday and done both yesterday afternoons shift plus a morning’s – which I’m on the train back from right now – I dunno if I might pass on this afternoons.

11:28 AM

Yesterday afternoon this supervisor asked me if I could go to Springwood Primary School right them and there, next train kinda deal, to cover Vicky for the afternoon and I agreed.

No sooner had I arrived and started cleaning he’s rang and informed me that Vicky would be away for the rest of the week so asked whether I’d cover her for the four additional shifts until the end of the week.

I immediately remembered explaining to him just two hours previous, that because of all the travel time involved I cannot go as far as Springwood or Blaxland twice in one day for two 4 hour shifts because there just isn’t enough time left when I get back to Katoomba for me to sleep, wash my clothes, eat and mostly sleep, but thinking about the hours I agreed anyway but added a “See how we go” at the end of the call.

A few minutes later I text him and said that if he wants me there for 5 consecutive shifts, it would certainly help for him to throw-in an additional 2-hours to reimburse cab-fairs to allow me to get from the station to the school instantly – without the 20 minute walk.

He scoffed at the idea and said I’d be getting the 28 hours I’d worked and no bonus 2-hours so that was that – cheap cunt, whatever it was worth a shot.

That was yesterday.

Now today, just a few minutes ago I’ve text the fuckin’ snake to tell him we will have to arrange something else for this afternoons shit because I’ve been awake for over 30 hours and I’m just too fucking tired to go do it.

Supervisor replies, ‘U need to go this afternoon!’, then, ‘Pleaaase!’

I tell him I need sleep, but there are other options: “If you get Jane to do another hour this afternoon, I can stay another two hours in the morning to do the yard clean-up and wheelie bins after the kids have gone into class” and “The only thing Jane needs to do that I’d need to do is lock-up and arm the building anyway”

Then the phone’s silent for a minute or two before he plays his master-stroke: ‘If u can’t go I need to take you off in my timesheets..’

A threat, to remove the 4-hours I’m planning not to work anyhow.

Genius.

But he doesn’t realize that I genuinely don’t give a fuck about the 4 hours – all I want is to go home and sleep and I tell him that.

A minute later he rings on his main phone, then hangs up, then rings again and I answer again before it hangs up again before he finally rings from his other mobile and I answer, “Afternoon.”

Just as I’d explained via text, I explained again on the phone that I have been awake for well over a full day now and I gotta sleep ..

*..

12:35 PM

Just time enough to slam down one last coffee before I do my first ever $60/hour average cleaning shift and average will be my peak this afternoon.

Probably best not share my compensatory rate with Jane: she’s still waiting on a few hours of overtime to be paid from two months ago ๐Ÿค

Sure sounds like something a team player would say.

I’ll tell her I fully intended to go home and sleep because I’m fucking exhausted, but I would’ve felt bad if Mohammad had her do my work plus her own.

And no, she’s not young or cute or attractive though there’s no need to even qualify any of that: nobody else is youโฃ

I wish there were multiple duplicates of you so I could pick a more relaxed, agreeable clone of you but no no – you gotta go and be the only version of you.

Yeah: finding the only woman you could ever see yourself with limits your options significantly.

To one โค

Oh yeah here’s a photo worth ending the days entry on..

Okay so it’s just a dumb cat, but an affectionate one if nothing else and wouldn’t stop rubbing its head against my hand through the bars – so fat it looked like someone had shoved a football up it and inside its guts.

Friday, 29th November 2019

Nooo problem getting to sleep last night at all and although I still only had time for about five hours, I don’t even recall laying there: soon as my head hit the pillow, BANG – the alarm on my phone’s going off.

And yuck: somebody’s coughing their lungs up down the other end of the train carriage. A wet, nasty sounding cough that’s making me sick just hearing it.

I’m still very sleepy though and could easily fall asleep right here on the train if I just stretched-out and closed my eyes.

The trippiest, most surreal shit yesterday: I’m walking through the primary school just fucking exhausted at 2:00PM and though the entire school yard was completely empty because they were all still in class, I’m walking under the main covered area of the yard and the whole school’s PA system is blasting Christmas Carols through the speakers..

Like one those creepy abandoned towns with no people but speakers booming happy-music in a loop.

10:09 AM

Right now time to go kill a few hours in town until the last shift of the week and maybe kill a cream bun if I can be bothered buying one.

11:43 AM

The hours-killing thing is dragging along much slower than I was hoping it would.

Watching the payload on the crane out the window .. it sways an awful lot – can’t believe they still haven’t finished that block of units; they started it the same time as the RSL.

Supervisor comes into the primary school this morning to have us sign half a dozen or so updated training ah documents, which is a routine thing in the company – every time there’s a new change in anything safety related the supervisor visits all the sites to engage it what they call ‘Toolbox Talks’ which we usually finger-sign on the iPad without reading the document or even the title of the document.

This morning he’s out there at around 7:00AM getting me to sign this and this and this.. and this and that before leaving to go find Jane and let me carry-on wiping desks in the de-mountable classrooms.

Ten minutes later I’ve finished the wiping and ten minutes after that I’ve had a smoke and I’m getting antsy for the only working vacuum cleaner – which we’ve had to take turns using since the second suddenly just stopped working yesterday morning.

I’ve walked around to the library and checked in there, no Jane or Mohammad: just two chicks who look neither like students or teachers sitting on the floor.

Around the back of the library is the ‘special needs’ block and as I start walking towards the gate I hear people talking loudly inside and go in to find Jane and Mohammad arguing about an additional hour she did on Wednesday morning he didn’t want to add to her time-sheet.

Vicky called in sick on Wednesday morning you see, but didn’t let anyone know until half an hour before her shift started at 4:00AM so where there should’ve been two cleaners doing 4 hours each, Jane was there and did her 4 hours but since none of Vicky’s work got done the former spent an hour trying to cover the work someone else should’ve been doing.

Mohammad didn’t want to pay her for the extra hour, he says because he didn’t ask her to do it and so you see how slippery this supervisor can be, and also why I’m curious about him jumping to simply add 4 hours to my timesheet I won’t even work, while denying 1 hour of work someone actually did?

Doesn’t make sense.

Anyway just as I swing open the door these two are trying to speak over one another and Jane’s telling the supervisor he never lets her get on with the vacuuming and bear in-mind I’ve still got all eight de-mountables to vacuum so I’m less concerned with their drama than I am seeing her vacuum her two rooms so I can go start on mine, when Mohammad cuts the argument short and says ‘Boss! Come. Show me where the other vacuum cleaner is that’s not working. Let Jane do her room.’

Yeah good, finally.

We go back to the main admin block where he ends up farting around the two different cords before he walks out to the van and returns in what felt like about an hour with an all black lead which he plugs in and oh, that one’s broken too.

The whole time he’s doing all this I’m just standing there leaning against the wall watching but since I’ve done everything but the vacuuming there’s really nothing better I’ve got to do so I watch him swap and check and at one point he asks ‘Why Jane is so mad?’

“Aah.. dunno.”

‘She say she want hour I tell her “Yes I give, you, hour”, but she still not happy.’

“Women right?”

*…

Saturday, 30th November 2019

So as tiring as the last three days were I am kicking the shit out of it with 32 hours and over $1,000 racked-up this week.

Supervisor wants me going even further to clean some primary school at Mount Riverview in Monday so I’ve just text the head cleaner at Blaxland High to see whether he’ll taxi me from Blaxland to Mount Riverview and back for an extra hour on his timesheet – overtime rate too, @$35/hour- so I’m bribing co-workers with my supervisors hours before even replying to tell him whether I’ll go clean it or not, because though being at Springwood or Blaxland at such an ungodly hour is a pain in the arse, but it’s better to go where the hours and work are and be generating income than hanging around Katoomba doing sweet fuck all.

2:28 PM

Here we are again – trickle-feeding the fat battery plugged into the wall while my phone slurps-up power from the other socket.

Had it not been for the fact that batteries were all flat and the imminent loss of my phone, I wouldn’t have come into town at sl today because I really, really want to finish shaping that redgum heart I’ve given myself a massive blister just gouging out of the rough chunk of wood it’s made from and get it just so before I start contemplating what kind of detail I wanna slice out of it.

It’s not the .. yeah the blister’s are always on my thumb and happen not because of the wood being rough or anything like that, but the sheer pressure I need to apply pressing down on the spine of the blade: even though it’s completely flat it’s still a pretty thin edge of steel and repeatedly pushing down to get my cuts gets very painful very quickly.

Tom from the Ritz just stopped on his way past and asked how I’m going and I told him everything’s fine though I’m tired plus how much money I’ve stacked on my timesheet this week and that I’m already bribing other cleaners with bonus hours before even negotiating next weeks site with the supervisor himself.

He’s said that’s good that’s great like you’d expect, but then he’s sort of just sorta stood there a few moments and I think he was waiting for me to ask how everything’s going with him but I really don’t give a shit so didn’t ask and after a few seconds he’s said he’s gotta go and ‘good to see you though’ before ahh, going.

Not that I dislike Tom so much as that I already know he’s not gunna be doing any better than last time I spoke to him and just don’t care enough to wanna hear about it ๐Ÿค

Anyway the heart feels super nice just smooth – as it is – and all that blister-inducing rough shaping is finished, the basic shape is already very well done and there’s only a small amount of refining required now.

I also love the size – it fits in your hand lovely and is larger than the majority of carvings I do which means I can fit a lot more detail on it due simply to its increased surface area.

There’s certainly a large number of weirdos in the library today and a lot of old men who seem to like having their trousers tucked into their socks which – other than looking fucking ridiculous – seems absolutely pointless unless you’re walking around in the valley surrounded by leeches.

No Old-Brian today.

9:24 PM

While waiting for dinner to be cooked tonight and while I was outside smoking anyway, I picked a bunch of flowers for her..

Because, โฃ

Though I’d originally planned to tell her the flowers were to make-up for my actually having a smoke I’d already finished that long before I’d finished picking all the flowers, so I forgot that’s what they were for and just took them in and gave ’em to her.

Well, she was doing dinner and had her hands full so I put em in a vase with water for her but she liked them fine – I saw the beamy little smile, don’t you worry ๐Ÿ™ƒ

Dinner tonight was IKEA frozen meatballs and IKEA powdered “gravy mix” plus real mashed potato and honestly Babe, just reading the “frozen meatballs” and “powdered gravy mix” should be enough to clear away that fog of marketing hype and remove the rose tinted glasses you two are viewing them through.

Not inedible, but certainly not the best meatballs in the world and though they *could* be the most famous meatballs in the world it’s ONLY by association with the global branding of IKEA x

The mashed potato was excellent though and meatballs + mash + gravy go together so well, it doesn’t matter how terrible the meatballs and gravy wereโฃ

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