How to get a free ride to the airport!

25 October 2021

 Now that travel is opening up again, I'm sure we're all keen to escape Scott Morrison's prison island*, or at least the bit of it we've been locked down in. But as we excitedly book airfares and accomodation, we're also reminded of one of the least enjoyable parts of travel: getting to and from the airport. Driving yourself isn't an option; with the amount airports charge for daily parking, you might as well abandon your car there and buy a new one when you get back. There's the airport train or sky bus, but they're privatised services and charge a fortune; having to add $40 or more in fares for a service that doesn't even get you to your house makes those discount airfares seem decidedly less of a bargain. You could ask a friend to give you a lift, but you know they're going to wait until you're in the car then ask you to help them move, and you won't be able to say no because they're doing you a favour, and it will just become a whole thing. 

But what if I told you there was an easy, obligation free way to get a free ride to the airport?

This bird can change (or, the disclaimer).

22 May 2021


I recently watched the Lynyrd Skynyrd documentary, If I Leave Here Tomorrow, a history of the band before and after Free Bird, Sweet Home Alabama and that horrible plane crash in a Mississippi swamp. It's very moving, but I was rather taken aback by the frequent display of the Confederate flag in archival concert footage. The Confederate flag, for all those who claim it's about "States Rights", essentially represents slavery, the subjugation of one people by another. 

Xander, 2003-2021

03 May 2021

On a cold winter's day in 2003, I looked down at the adorable face of the new kitten my best friend had bought me as a birthday present. We'd been tossing around names on the drive home from the RSPCA; I wanted to name him something starting with an X or a Z, but I wasn't sure what. The workers at the shelter had put the kitten in a box for the trip home. Far from cowering in fear, the little guy kept sticking his head up through the gap, trying to get out. "I just feel like his name is Xander", I said as I gave in and cuddled all 600g of him to me, not quite knowing where that name had come from. Working out the expected life span of an indoor cat and my newly minted age, I reflected "wow, I'll have him till I'm nearly forty", although surely I would never get that old.

We both exceeded expectations. 

Bradford Exchange has the worst things for sale

21 April 2021

If you're as old as I am, you may remember in the days of actual magazines made of trees, in the TV guides that came free with the newspapers and the trash mags at the doctor's waiting room, the regular full page ads for the company Bradford Exchange, hawking overpiced themed clocks and commemorative plates. 

If you've thought about that organisation at all in the intervening years, you may have wondered if there was a place for such a company in the modern world, or if they'd gone out of business. Good heavens, no. Bradford Exchange is still a thing and. unhampered by the limits of paid advertising space, they're able to let their young hearts run free, selling the absolute worst overpriced "collectible" shit you can imagine to whoever on Earth is buying it. 

Kathleen Folbigg is a monster who should not be in jail - update 2021

23 March 2021

This post was originally published in 2015. In light of new developments in the case, I'm republishing this edited and updated version now. 

What could be more devastating to consider, more disturbing to the fundamental principles of humanity - and more likely to incite public anger - than the idea of a mother who kills her children? The media and courts created a Kathleen Folbigg, monster, who had no connection to the real person.

Why isn't pay per news a thing?

16 March 2021
In an era of journalism relying on a subscription model to survive, there is a solution that should work for writers and readers. Why is no one using it? 

International Women's Day 2021: the bad, the worse, and the WTF

08 March 2021

Well, it's International Women's Day*, again. So in honour of the day that began as a communist holiday before being co-opted by the corporate and liberal forces of white feminism, here's a selection of the most rage, or at least cringe, inducing moments from the day.

Love and hate

01 March 2021

Trigger warning: sexual assault, medical abuse, suicide

 Despite everything that's happened in my life (and pretty much everyone my age has had something awful happen in their lives), I try to be a forgiving person. To not hold on to resentment, or let bad feelings develop into hatred in the first place.  The saying is true: holding on to resentment is like swallowing poison and expecting the other person to die. I've seen people eaten alive by that resentment, and how the hatred has poisoned everyone around them, without hurting the object of their hatred in any way.

Book review: Starfish by Patty Dann

25 February 2021

The film Mermaids meant a lot to me in my early teens, as I guess it did to a lot of women of my generation. Teenage films were pretty much dead as a genre between the John Hughes/Molly Ringwald era of the 1980s and the release of Clueless in 1995. The success of Clueless lead to an explosion in the release of teen movies, from sexploitation (American Pie) to horror (Scream, I Know What You Did Last Summer) then cheerleaders (Bring It On) and mean girls (one mean girl in Cruel Intentions, then a whole eponymous film of them). By the time Clueless was released, I was way too depressed for anything that looked as blithe as the poster suggested - though I did watch, and love, the film several years later, then many times since. 

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