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Hickinbottom’s Aussie Ramblings

Archive for the ‘Work’ Category

32 going on 12…..

Posted by captainbeaky on August 3, 2008

This week has been relatively short, and enjoyable. After being absoutely shattered on Monday and Tuesday last week, I decided I needed time off, so booked Thursday and Friday off. I really needed it to be honest, as I just felt exhausted and weary. So Thursday I decided to go into town and treat myself…..

….well some time ago my brother sent me a Star Wars Lego kit, which I thoroughly enjoyed building. Bought a lot of old memories back to me and it really got the engineer/boy part of me going. While talking about this with one of my workmates, he told me of his recent quest to buy an old Tamiya radio controlled car kit that he missed out on when he was a kid. Now he’s bought it and was telling me how much fun it is to build. See, I had 2 RC cars when I was growing up, only 1 of which I built, and back then it was more about rushing to build it so I could play and race with it. Now, it got me thinking that if I enjoyed the Lego and I want to build stuff, I should think about getting another RC car too. So on Thursday I did! This is what Im currently building. Its not a ninja fast, ultra high spec buggy but it was cheap and I though Id buy an inexpensive model to start with so if I found it to be more of a pain than a joy, I could just sell it on and I wouldnt have lost much. However, as it stands, the opposite is happening. In fact, Im having to limit how much time I spend with it each day or it would be done straight away if I just go with it! REALLY enjoying it, and doing a ton of internet “research” on motors, shocks, servos, etc…. I really dont know where its going to go from here. Whether I try and race it, or just take it on the beach every now and again I dont know. Am I going to get another one? I dont know. Right now, Im just having a great time assembling it, so Im not thinking any further than that. 

Anyway, after buying that I had a mooch around town, got some nice food and drink and took it easy. Friday was more pampering with cake and building my buggy. Which pretty much happened on Saturday, and today! I didnt fancy doing anything else, so we didnt. Plus this is the calm before the stomach churning horror of next weeks house auction. Makes me feel sick just to think about it so I wont!

So that sums up my week. Relaxation. Building stuff. Thinking of paint jobs. Happy. Hopefully I will be fully recharged for next week and whatever it brings!

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Posted in Nothing, RC Stuff, Work | 2 Comments »

Hi Hooooooooooooooooooo!

Posted by captainbeaky on April 27, 2008

Just a quick post to let you know, Im back at work from tomorrow! Strike over.

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Cheesed off.

Posted by captainbeaky on April 19, 2008

Sorry I havent posted in a while, but Im totally pissed off. Still not working, despite countless meetings and much bullshit spewed. I wont comment on the specifics, instead I’ll just point you here, and you can live the misery as Im reading it too. I havent done anything, I havent taken the car out since driving it home, I fail to be interested by pretty much anything, and am totally fed up. I know all I can do is weather this difficult period, as the alternatives dont bear thinking about, but that doesnt make me feel any better.

Im not doing anything, and I wont post again until this right royal mess is sorted. I know this blog is far from exciting at the best of times, but you dont want to be reading my moans everyday, so I’ll spare you the agony.

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Who needs racing games!?

Posted by captainbeaky on April 15, 2008

Jut a quick one today to let you guys know Ive got my new car! It was very scary having my first experience of driving alone, first experience in a new car, drivin back from an unfamiliar area! The car itself feels very different to my old one, and the one I learned to drive in. The Mazda is very quick, good at disguising speed, has fantastic handling and “feels” a lot more sporty than what Im used to. Got my parking permit sorted, as well as insurance so everything is pretty much done and dusted on the paperwork side. Scary-ness quickly turned into excitement that I was ACTUALLy driving on the roads at last! AND in a nice car – felt strangely liberating and exhilerating. Cant wait to get out on the open roads!

In other good news, things are on the move at work. Theres a meetig tomorrow in which I have an inkling that everything will be sorted out. However, I may be wrong so dont bank on it being done! I’ll keep you posted. Be exciting to drive to work too! To say Im thrilled by my new toy is an understatement!

Right, Im off to look at the owners manual now! Sad……

Posted in Cars, Work | 5 Comments »

Ups & Downs

Posted by captainbeaky on April 10, 2008

A quick update to let you know whats going on, and that all is NOT well. Im personally ok, but work isnt. I dont want to write anything huge about it on a public blog, but go here for details.

I had written a big speel about me buying Sega Superstars tennis, but WordPress screwed up and I lost the text, and Im not writing it all again. Short version – If you like tennis games, buy Virtua Tennis. If you like Sega, fun, or read UK Resistance, you owe it to yourself to buy this game. My opinion, 8/10.

I may also be able to pick my car up this weekend. Cutting a long story short, my money is due in my Australian account tomorrow, so if I do a same day transfer to the dealership, I could be quids in to pick it up. We’ll see.

Im sure more stuff has happened, but Im pretty tired so I’ll post more tomorrow, when hopefully I’ll have more to say. come to mention it, I think Im going to end the daily posting business. If Im honest, if i put myself in some of my friends/families positions, I wouldnt particularly be interested in reading about what other people had for tea, or the fact that they did nothing at the weekend. I can understand that folks may have been interested during our honeymoon period here, when everything was new, strange and exciting, but now day-to-day life has set in, it doenst make for a particularly thrilling read. So I will probably be posting every other day, or every 3 days from now on. I would say let me know your thoughts, but seeing as only my Mom comments/emails me about it, I wont bother as I know its a fruitless exercise.

Posted in Cars, Games, Work | Leave a Comment »

Funny and Sleepy

Posted by captainbeaky on March 20, 2008

0880-sid-james-laughingsid-james-laughing-posters.jpgJust a short post to let you know I am still alive and to give you a brief rundown of whats been happening. Yesterday, we went to the Melbounre International Comedey Festival Gala show at the Vodafone Arena in town, and had a really good night. Some brilliant comedians, but also some piss poor ones too. Nearly all of the female comediens just wanted to talk about pap smears, or periods, or the menopause, instantly alienating half of the audience. One guy even came out and did the whole ” have you noticed how white guys do this………and black guys do this” routine! Straight out of the Simpsons (white men drive like this doot, doot-de-doo…!) However the majority were funny and we’re buying tickets for their individual shows. On the walk back to the tram stop, it was possum city – nearly every tree had one or 2 in the tree or sitting on the ground, staring at you. They didnt even move when you approached them and you could get within a metre before they bolted. Ive got a couple of pictures I need to upload that I’ll sort out for next post.

I would like to write more, but at the moment Im very tired. The late start/late finish of the Gala meant we didnt get back home until 12.45, so I only eded up getting 4.5 hours kip, AND Ive just come back from badminton, which I got hammered in (my heart wasnt really in it) and Im fit for bed now. I’ll get a bite to eat first then think about sleep. Im in work tomorrow (got a lot of stuff to do, and the money will be nice) and on Monday too, but Ive got Tuesday off for my test.

 So thats it…..Oh, before I forget….Mom, we got your birthday cards yesterday. I dont know when you sent them but theyre here now. We got one from Lyn too so thank you, and her very much! I’ll open them on the day in question! 

Posted in comedy, Work | Leave a Comment »

From Mega Post to Mega-crap Post……

Posted by captainbeaky on March 3, 2008

interest-rate.jpgNot really got anything to write today, as I pretty much exhausted myself yesterday. That coupled with the fact that its VERY hot here today will mean this is a relatively short post. Work was pretty good again, with it getting more interesting and insightful each day. So the work day came and went, and then I just came home. Simple as that. Becca is at Knit Club tonight so Ive got the palce to myself, which I will be using to watch TV and play more Mario Galaxy. 

In other joyous news, the interest rates are going to rise for the 10th time tomorrow by 0.25%, making housing even less affordable. Marvellous. However the positive news is that it seems that the housing market IS slowing down, and the economy is showing some initial signs of going tits up. I know its not usually a good thing to be willing the whole economy to collapse, but it has to for us to be able to get on the property ladder.

Ah, nevermind. Im getting tired of thinking about it. Motor Show time tomorrow, so I can have a squizz, and check out the leg room in those Mazda’s and Becca can have a look at her Fiat 500. As such , I may not make a post tomorrow as I have no idea when we’ll be back. We also have a plans to eat at a place called Beer De Luxe, a bar for the more discerning beer drinker. And it does good burgers too!

Posted in Cars, Money, weather, Work | Leave a Comment »

The Mega-post!!!

Posted by captainbeaky on March 2, 2008

hats.jpgRight – if you get bored easily, dont bother with this post. Ive got 2 days of catching up to do so its going to be a long slog until the end of the post. Firstly, the boring stuff. Work has been good, with it getting a little busier every day so I hope it doesnt reach melting point soon. Either way, at the moment, Im actually enjoying going to work. The weather is fantastic here at the moment too, with it being 28 degrees today and its due to peak tomorrow at 32 degrees. Mad when you think it is now the equivalent of being September in the northern hemisphere. I dont ever remember it being 32 in September in the UK. 

Right, now thats out of the way I can write about other things that we’ve been doing/mulling over. Yesterday, we went into Prahran to have a look about and just to get a change of scenery from Melbourne, and really enjoyed it. Popped into a great antique/vintage shop and saw many millions of dollars of stuff that we wanted, and things that bought a tear to the eye, as fond childhood memories came flooding back. They had a pristine, mint condition boxed Starbird, in all its sound-effect and lightshow glory. You remember that Andy? Even had the little detachable ships on each wing – awesome! On our way around, I picked up some HD leads for my Wii and 360, as well as Super Mario Galaxy, but more on that later. We managed to abstain from blowing  a small fortune in the Playboy shop, as Becca found some great looking baby-doll style heeled slippers, and I saw a great looking suit. Both far too expensive though. Settled for tapas on our way home from the restaurant just up the road, which was damn nice. I usually measure the quality of a tapas joint by the tastyness of its patatas bravas, and this place didnt disappoint – an 8/10! 

Before we visited “Pu-ran” yesterday, we decided to go and have a look at an inspection, pre-auction on a property thats next door to us, and in our price range. Thought it would be good to experience just what we’ll have to go through in a few months time.  This is the property (dont forget to click the links Mom!) we went to see, which looks huge on the photos, but seemed smaller in real life but the view was more spectacular in the flesh. We had a look at the penthouse suite in the same building as it was avaiable for rent (but quite pricey) and it was lovely. Built in robes, an even better view, big bedrooms and a nice bathroom. Trying to make an appointment to see another unit tomorrow too, just to have a “stickybeak”! Good to have a nose and see what we should be expecting even if we arent in the market right now. I went back to that place up for sale this morning to sit in on the actual auction. It was a pretty slow affair and seemed like trying to get blood from a stone for the auctioneer, as nobody really wanted to pay a lot. The opening bid was for the asking price of $510k, and it finally crept for $530k, which isnt too bad for a property with that view. We’ve spent a lot of today mulling over our options, trying to predict market conditions, should be rent for a year, how much is it going to cost us to get furniture, beds, appliances etc….. and we havent really got anywhere. Renting and buying right now, have so many pluses and minuses for and against each option, and as such its like hitting your head against a wall. In the end, we decided the best thing for us to do was…..wait. We’re in this place until July, we need exchange rates to improve, we need interest rates to drop and more properties to appear on the market. We can continue to monitor whats going on without making a rash decision that will end up costing us in the long run. The property market here, and the economy, cant carry on at the levels they are right now, so its got to slow down, or burst pretty soon. We just have to wait until then and jump in!

Right, onto games. Despite it being a bumper period for games in general, with a crapload of A+++ games being released, and another quality period around the corner, Ive been getting slightly sick of it all. Bored of killing people in Assassins Creed. Killing more folks in Halo 3. Killing more folks in COD4. Killing more folks in Mass Effect. Killing more folks in Tomb Raider Anniversary. I know theyre all very different games, but I cant help feeling theyre all quite generic when considered as a whole. All are very realistic, all are very tense games and all are fiercly competitive. I feel like Ive been playing them because theyre there, rather than playing them for enjoyment, or escape. Its been fun for a while, but that fun has turned into monotony, and Ive not looked forward to switching my 360 on for a week or so.  So that has ended now and after reading countless rave reviews I bought Super Mario Galaxy, and the found the reviews were not wong. Its bloody fantastic! Really does get back to the roots of what makes a good game. Its not realistic, its not gritty, its not got lifelike textures and environments. In its place is escapism, fun, colourful, no-stress adorable gaming at its best. Even the way Mario runs put a smile on my face! If youre sick of the whole generic real-world, shoot/stab-em-up style of gaming that infests every weeks release schedule, I urge you to try this. Its bloody amazing! As a result of this I intend to change my whole perspective on buying games. Ever since 360 was released, I tended to buy a game I was fairly interested in on its release day, rather than if I actually WANTED to buy it. For instance, in the coming weeks theres Army of Two, Rainbow 6 Vegas 2 and a couple of others that I acant remember which were orignally must buy games for me. On reflection, “post Mario”, I really cant be arsed with any of them. Theyre just more of the same generic gubbins I mentioned before, so I’ll be leaving them well alone. Hopefully, I’ll be able to hunt out some original, fun games to get on with instead. 

Ive also realised that I am far more into driving games than I thought. Forza 2,  PGR 4 and DIRT have all really got “my motor running” (pun intended) and I just want more of them, especially with the steering wheel setup. As a result of this, I may be about to commit a terrible, terrible sin. Well, at least in the eyes of UK Resistance (and possibly my Brother). Playstation 3. Gran Turismo 5 Prologue. Force Feedback Wheel. Three items which have me considering a purchase of Sony’s George Foreman grill. I knew I would end up getting one at some point, for God of War 3, maybe Singstar for Becca, and Little Big Planet also looks pretty special. However, I dont realy want to get one before the control pad has rumble reinstated so I wont be buying one immediately. I dare say I’ll be even  more keen to buy one in a few days as I intend to visit the Melbourne Motorshow on Tuesday evening, which is joint sponsored by GT5, and has demo units galore inside. If it actually plays half as good as the videos Im seeing, it will be very hard to try and persuade me not to buy one! 

And on the subject of buying things, my mind is thrown into even more confusion by news of this game. Battlefield Heroes. While it may just seem like a WW2 Team Fortress ripoff, it looks superb. I can tell you I played Battlefield 1942 more than any other videogame before it, or since, so the prospect of a highly styled, great looking, FREE update of it sounds ace. Only problem is, its PC only. No Mac, no 360. If I buy a MacBook Air, it wont be powerful enough to run it. A MacBook Pro will easily powerful enough, but I aesthetically, it looks like a crock of shit, and has the ugliest keyboard Ive seen in a long time. I know aesthetics arent everything, but they are if youre me and use your laptop every day of the year.  However, there are distant rumours of the next MacBook Pro update in June, which will hopefully make it look prettier too. If this happens, Im quids in, but if they dont, I dont know where I stand. I guess, I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it I suppose, but up until then, its yet another waiting game. 

So there ends the largest post Ive made yet. Its taken me over 45 minutes to type, and is currently at 1493 words. Jesus! I wrote University essays shorter than this! Dont fret though, normal service shall resume tomorrow.  Now, its time for Match of the Day, and a beer…….

Posted in Apple, Blog, Food, Games, House, Oz, weather, Work | Leave a Comment »

Is this gonna be a standup fight, sir, or another bughunt?

Posted by captainbeaky on February 26, 2008

them_giant_ant.jpgSo, not much has happened between now and yesterday, so here are the highlights. I did indeed have a shower last night, but no shave. Becca enjoyed Knit Club, and was back early, thanks to a super fast tram. I went to bed, got up, went to work, had a good day, and came home ok. See…..uneventful. So to while away the time, I’ll post one of those good piccies I promised last week. But first…..a story to accompany it.

Last week, we noticed that we started gettting the odd ant in our kitchen, which we werent really surprised about thanks to the lack of double glazing, no windows that actually fit properly in their frames and the fact that were on the ground floor! So I started dustbustering them up. However, this soon became tiresome, so off to Safeway we went to buy some hardcore ant annihilator. We decided on some spray that you put on the floor, and if they cross it, they die, and a kind of poison trap thing that the ants eat, take back to the nest, and whole nest gets nuked. We did a quick test of the spray and it worked a treat – it was like the ants were walking “out of the play area” in Halo or something – a slow sapping of the health until death ensues. On reflection though, we’d prefer to wipeout the nest so we put a poison trap down, and god damn if it wasnt like tasty magical ant-elixir to the little shits. They were swarming all over it, lapping it up and scurrying back to their home. We got slightly alarmed as it attracted more, and more and more ants so we put a ring of insta-kill spray around it, to stop any greedy, poison-high ants having a wander around our kitchen to see what else they could eat. The following day, we noticed our ant visitors had reduced significantly, and the day after they had stopped. Nest successfully nuked! My only 2 regrets are that we didnt have an Attenburrugh style ant-cam showing Barry, the happy little ant taking back his pickings to the grateful Queen only to see the lot of them keel over and peg it! Muhahahahaaaaa! My only other regret is that the actual Queen death wasnt as dramatic as the box made out…..
 

ants.jpg
I wanted to see a large bulbous red ant, lying on its back, being continually struck by vicious looking red lighting bolts from the heavens.  Maybe if Id had ant-cam, I could have witnessed this spectacle. Oh, and 10 points to anyone who got the Aliens quote in the post title. Minus 10 points to Andy if you DIDNT get it!

Posted in animals, Work | 2 Comments »

The Transvestite & Sheep Post……

Posted by captainbeaky on February 25, 2008

campstan.jpgOK, a proper post today, so lets start with yesterday. Driving was uneventful at best. Slow speed manouvres are still a bit of a pin, but other than that everything is going swimmingly . Got 4 weeks to my test so not really that long considering Im only having 1 lesson a week. After driving, we went to see Priscilla, which if Im perfectly honest, I wasnt really looking forward to. I thought the film was a 7/10, I dont like theatre, and I like musicals even less, but a promise is a promise so I had to go. However, I soon changed my tune when it started. It was a good laugh, faithful to the movie, had great sets and outfits, the musical numbers were (mostly) out straight out of the film so were at least memorable and the performances were great. I dont think even the most cold hearted people could have failed to love it – was thoroughly enjoyable! Thinking about going to see Spamalot now, but I think my brief venture into theatrical hijinks will end there.

Today, has been a pretty routine day. Up early for work, had another enjoyable day ACTUALLY getting stuff done and completing jobs that I started. So unlike all of my previous experiences in engineering. 

Oh, I promised a review of Black Sheep too, so here it goes. Its fairly good. Next….! The whole film has a similar feel to Peter Jacksons early films in the sense that its humourous, gory and preposterous…so all good then! My only criticism is that it bogs down in a few places, whereas Jacksons films were relentless non stop affairs. Saying that though, if youre a fan of B-movie schlock horror its worth watching. Id give it a 6.5 out of 10.  
 
Beccas gone to Knit Club tonight so got the place all to myself. So far Ive done crazy things like….eat food! Watch Primeval! Do the washing up! And shortly……..I will be……..having a shave……..and….a…..shower!!!! oooooooooooooooooo! In other news, have you heard australian magpies – theyre great – nowt like UK magpies – have a listen.  And you can check it out anywhere if you dont believe me – Becca thought I was mad when I told her I heard that noise come from a  magpie!
  
And finally…..thanks to the B3ta newsletter for this awesome find. A great website dedicated to Camp Records, purveyor of groovy 60’s gay pop records! My favourites include “Mixed Nuts” (check out the lyrics), “Im so wet”, “Leather Jacket Lovers” and “Florence of Arabia”. However for sheer jaw dropping excellence, feast your ears on “Homer, the happy little homo”. I kid you not! Quite a catchy tune too!

Posted in animals, comedy, driving, Film, internet, Work | Leave a Comment »

Work Goodness and Another Funny Pic

Posted by captainbeaky on February 18, 2008

funnydogcostumes.jpgWell, you’ll be pleased to know that I am NOT the latter of the 2 options I mentioned in yesterdays post – I’m much happier. Got my stuff sorted out at work.
 
The big problem was that on Friday, I found that they wanted me and the other new engineer to work on permanent afternoons, and anyone who knows me well will tell you that just isnt keeping with my lifestyle. So, I spent the rest of Friday and some of Saturday brooding and thinking about leaving. Thankfully, Becca made me see sense and we came up with a compromise. At any one time, one of will work the late shift (not nights – but like an evening shift), while the other one will come in 4 hours early, and leave 4 hours early. Everyones happy. The shift is covered and one of us will get to leave early – on a week on/week off basis. Thankfully, went into work today and put it to our manager, who was more than happy for us to do that – which I am relieved about. I know it means working late everyother week, but there are financial incentives involved with that, and to be blunt its too good a job to just snub and go somewhere else. Pay, conditions and perks are fantastic and the work itself is interesting and something new, so its worth enduring every other week of poo hours for.
 
Not really much else to say, tother than its been another blisteringly hot day, but everyone seems happy for us to wear whatever so it will be jeans and tee tomorrow! Oh, and we got a phone call this evening from a random person saying that they had found a phone on Brighton beach and had called the number labeled “Home”. How nice – Becca hadnt even realised she had lost her phone (what a surprise!) but this lady has rang us to say we could go round and collect it – lovely. I could NEVER in a  million years imagine that happening in the UK!

Posted in weather, Work | 1 Comment »

Not much of anything….

Posted by captainbeaky on February 17, 2008

21.jpg…and before you ask (except you wont cos you either dont know how to use comments of none of you  read this blog!), the picture is just for comedic effect. I came across it randomly whilst on an internet wander, and it made us both laugh, so there!

Didnt do much at all today….which was extremely nice! First port of call was a driving lesson which went well. Not making so many little errors when pootling about, but still need to hone my slow maneuvering skills. After getting back, I took a walk up the paper shop to get the Herald Sun and some pop then got back ASAP as its been really hot today, probably getting on for about 34 degrees. I then spent most of the day watching the Man Utd/Arsenal FA Cup match, and all the rest of the games on Match of the Day. The Man Utd match was a really good 90 mins of entertainment. Aresenal just didnt turn up and it could have easily have been 8-0 to Man-U instead of just 4-0. I cant believe Liverpool got beat by Barnsely too – shocking. Having a rubbish season, considering the money theyve spent. Also, sad to see Wolves get knocked out by Cardiff, although they did deserve to get beaten. They played bloody terrible. Had a nice homemade steak and onion baguette for tea tonight – really hit the spot, and watched a bit more TV, and then remembered I hadnt made a post today – nearly forgot!

No plans for tomorrow except go to work and try to sort my predicament out, so the next post I make I will either be much happier, or angry and annoyed. I hope its not the latter.  

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Dazed and ………

Posted by captainbeaky on February 15, 2008

confused.jpgShort post today on account of being a bit miffed. Found out some stuff today at work that Im not exactly happy about, to say the least. I dont really want to post it here in case there are reprisals, and I dont really think its the right thing to do…well at least not until Ive attempted to remedy the problem on Monday. Lets just say I have some thinking to do, and I’ll hopefully be able to fill you in more on Monday.

Plans for tomorrow include going to Brighton, and maybe popping into town to get some cheap work clothes from Target. Driving lesson has been moved to Sunday so it doesnt spilt the day up tomorrow. Sorry for the briefness of reply, and if I haven t responded to Facebook/emails, but I promise I’ll get round to it tomorrow.  

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Cheeky and Naughty….

Posted by captainbeaky on February 14, 2008

cockatoo_3.jpgToday was yet another uneventful day at work, as it consisted of a full days worth of training. Ho hum. Should be on the home stretch now as we’ve only got 1 more unit (half a days worth) of this training subject to go, so hopefully that will be the end of it by 12 tomorrow. Been getting a bit twitchy on what Im hearing about our final work hours though. We’ve been hearing it may be fortnightly rotating shifts on evenings (3-10pm I think), and other folks saying we’ll be on permanent evenings. While I can stand rotating shifts (not ideal, but what are you gonna do) I dont like the sound of permanent afternoons. Will have to ask about clarification on this issue, as it may be a deal breaker. If Becca gets a regular day job, it means I wont get to see her until the weekend which considering she’s the only person I know here apart from work folk, is not great.  

Not much else happened. Amusing, story on the news today about cockatoo’s causing $70,ooo worth of damage to a building in town. There is a steel framed spire over the top of Melbourne Arts Centre that is covered in blue LED’s which illuminate the entire structure at night, but the cockies have been turning up at the tower en masse, taking off the all LED protective caps, and then crushing the lights! So to scare them off, some local falconry school has loaned a couple of massive eagles (bloody huge – 2.5m wingspan, and are the cockatoos natural predator apparently) which they have have trained to fly about the vicinity, putting the shits up all the cockies.   Bit different to plastic owls to scare of pigeons!

Not really got much else to report. Games wise, Im still really enjoying Rez HD, getting frustrated by FIFA 08 (I was really good at FIFA 07 but thats all gone out of the window with 08), and getting back into Forza 2, even though Ive had to drop the difficulty from hard to normal.  Im sure you CAN beat it on hard, but I have neither the skill, inclination, or patience. Exciting games news today that folks that made Gears of War, are set to release a game called “Aliens: Colonial Marines” and is supposedly a squad based FPS. All I can think of is Gears graphics, coupled with the Aliens universe and I soil myself with anticipation. However I hope its not as scary as Aliens Vs Predator 2 on PC from several years back. An absolutely brilliant FPS, but I didnt play it much on account of being too damn scary! My brain somehow couldnt fathom that it was just a bunch of grouped polygons charging me down, it WAS actually an Alien and it would kill me and spray acid at me if I shot it. Here’s hoping the license isnt wasted and we get another substandard Aliens game though. 

Posted in Games, In the News, Work | Leave a Comment »

Ooooo…….Yes!!!!

Posted by captainbeaky on February 13, 2008

dollars.gifAnd this is what makes the early starts all worthwhile – my first paycheck! And how nice it is to have money going IN to my bank account, for the first time since January 2007. Its a fair old wedge too (well, compared to my old wage), as working it out, I can earn my monthly wage that I was on in the UK, in under 3 weeks here – as I say, its nice!

Its been a relatively tiring and exhausting day of training…again! Ordered my work clothes, and some protective footwear today too. Again, while I HAVE learnt more things than shoes, and polo shirts, I dont really feel I can write about them on here, which is REALLY frustrating. I usually cant wait to tell others when I learn something exciting or new, so this is killing me! And its also killing my blog too :o(

I still have no idea what Im going to fill these pages with from now on. I can talk for hours about games and TV, but Im guessing most of the people reading this blog dont care about games and while interested in TV, they are NOT interested in Australian TV. 

On a general front, the economy here is a mess, which has 2 worrying fronts. Firstly, the exchange rate is bloody awful right now. When we moved across here, £1 = $2.42, but today £1 = $2.17 which doesnt sound much, but when youre transferring the proceeds from a house sale, it means the difference between $180,000 and $160,000. A huge margin, you’ll agree. Secondly the interest rates here keep going up and up. They received another rise this week which means the mortgage interest rates are now  around 8.5 – 9%, which really isnt good for trying to get on the mortgage ladder. I mean, it wont be a problem for us getting a mortgage but with rates that high, it will take that bit longer to pay off. The banks have also confirmed that they will rise again come April. Pain in the arse!

Posted in Money, Work | Leave a Comment »

Errrrrr…..wibble?

Posted by captainbeaky on February 12, 2008

writersblock.jpgWell now I find myself in a bit of a pickle. What on earth do I write about when all Ive done is go to work, which I cant talk about, then come home? The bus journey? What Ive had for tea? What TV Ive watched? I dunno! Maybe I need to think about other things I want to write about on this page, becuase as time goes by, unless something spectacular happens, and barring the weekends, I cant really see this situation changing. Especially seeing as the next 2 days are just solid training from 7:30-4:30pm. 

But to answer my own questions, work was ok, half day training, half day on shop floor. The bus journey was uneventful and wonderfully short, I had tuna pasta bake for tea and Ive watched a new episode of Grand Designs, a program about Tescos in America (both programs downloaded) and the terrestrial premiere of “The Sarah Conner Chronicles“, which while poor and predictable, wasnt as dreadful as I anticipated.  Thats about it – probably watch a Monkey Dust in a bit then go to bed. I wish I had more interesting things to say, or at least could tell you some of the stuff Ive learnt at work, but hey ho, I’ll try to think of further things I can do with the blog to keep this interesting instead of sinking to a laborious “went to work, did nothing” bore-fest. So if YOU have any ideas on what you want to see, post a comment and let me know.  

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Attack of the Lobster-people!

Posted by captainbeaky on February 11, 2008

adult_red_lobster_costume.jpgThat would be me and Becca then. Honestly, I only said it got my ankles and neck yesterday, but on reflection, and after a bit of time, we soon found we are ALL red. Well….all of the bits that were exposed to the sun are red. It doesnt hurt or anything, it just looks ridiculous, but less so today for me. However, Becca looks even more red today for some reason, so Ive gone to great lengths to steer clear of the sun today.

Speaking of which its been a pretty run of the mill day. Got up for work ok, and made it on with no problems too. The day was more interesting than normal as we had a day to kill on the shop floor in our respective areas, as training doesnt start until tomorrow. Been interesting, and I feel like Ive learnt more useful stuff in one day than I did all of last week. Also learnt, that as quality engineers, we are on flexi-time, which means we can start anytime between 6am and 10am which is great. Especially if youre planning on having a late night, or need to get stuff done at the bank or something. The more I spend at work, the more Im pleased I got the job – should be great.

However….Im feeling the early start now. I had a little kip on the bus, and another one after watching Match of the Day 2 (Liverpool match was shockingly bad, but Man Utd match was good to watch). So now, Im gonna settle in to watch the new episodes of CSI and then get another early night, in preparation for more training tomorrow. Hopefully its payday tomorrow too – woo hooo!!!!!

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Danger Will Robinson! Beer and Sake Everywhere!

Posted by captainbeaky on February 8, 2008

lost_in_space_robot_body_1_2_2004.jpgT’was a good day today. Work was just more training, training, training but had a good natter with the other chaps there and had a good laugh. The bad news is that it seems we have at least another week and a half of training to go! I’ll have info coming out of every orifice by that point, but it was a late start thanks to the training so it wasnt all that bad. 

After work, I met Becca in town as I needed to get some more work shirts, but it turned out to be a much more lengthy visit than just shirt shopping. On the way down to the shops, we saw a good little bar caller “Bar Humbug”, which we thought was a great name and it looked pretty decent inside, so after I got a shirt or 2, we went back to the bar and had a drink. Nice bar, a little expensive but would be a nice place to take visitors. After that, we went along to another bar, which was really funky. A little Japanese, anime robot bar, simply called “Robot“. The decor was all robot-ey, with lots of anime pics everywhere and tons of little robot toys on the shelves. The bar was stocked with a wide variety of Japanese beers, had loads of sake, and they even sold pocky! You would have loved it Andy – they even showed anime on a Tuesdays and had drinks specials on. I definitely think we’ll be going back.

After that we went and got some food at Yoyogi sushi place, then home (again Andy, you would have liked it – yakitori chicken and katsu curry). Feel quite tired now though, which isnt surprising as Ive been on the go for 14 hours. Oh yeah, I also managed to pick up FIFA 08 for 360 in Electronics Boutique – 2nd hand but it looks ok and comes with a week long guarantee in case it plays up. Sensible Soccer rekindled my interest in footy games, but is just too damn hard, and doesnt have the depth of FIFA, hence, I got FIFA. 

Only plans we have for the weekend are me having a driving lesson tomorrow (first Saturday lesson so I hope the roads arent too busy), and then St Kilda Festival on Sunday, when about 400,000 people descend on St Kilda for music, comedy, and other gubbins – should be a good un, and I’ll be sure to post pictures, as I have today on my webspace/Facebook. Check em out!

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Privacy = Annoying!

Posted by captainbeaky on February 7, 2008

mouth_tape.jpgWell Im relatively un-tired, got plenty of time to post stuff, and have done a lot of “things” at work, but when I sit down to write about it, I find myself bricking it cos of Boeings crazy Ay-mericaaaan privacy stuff. And knowing how stringent they are on site, and at the gatehouse, and online about all things 787, I really dont think I can say anything in detail about my day on a public blog site, so I’ll try to be non-descript and vague.

Still doing training, which on one hand is very annoying, but on the other hand, its how its meant to be done, rather than thrown in at the deep end and just told to get on with it. Been around the factory and seen where Im working, and it looks really good, but TOTALLY different from everything Ive done before.  The bunch of engineers Im with are all top blokes, and get on well with them. Its still a bit strange getting up so early, as the only way I find I can cope with it, is to offset my whole day by 2 hours. so I get up early, come home early, and go to bed early. Bit of a pain, but it works fine, as Im nowhere near as tired as I was on Monday or Tuesday. 

Weather has been crazy here today. Last night was stormy, this morning was windy and cool, then it brightened up then got hot, then drizzled, then warm again, and its blustery now – mad! Supposed to be getting better tomorrow and over the weekend though. 

Managed to finish Assassins Creed a couple of days ago and thoroughly enjoyed it. I actually thought the game was a bit short, as I just wanted more cities and levels to bound around in. Nevermind, still got lots of stuff left to do before I get all the achievements.  

Well, Im sorry Im not able to say much about my new job, needless to say,  I AM enjoying it, even though I haven’t actually done much “work” yet.  Please dont think Im over-reacting about not saying anything about my job, but I really dont want to jeopardise this opportunity, by posting something that can get me sacked. From the stories Ive heard, Boeing isnt too afraid to wield “the big stick” if someone compromises the interests of the company. I know Ive got more training tomorrow, and I think training all of next week too, so I have no idea when the reigns will be off. Everyone is telling us to make the most of it as our feet wont touch the ground once were let loose. I hope they’re wrong!

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Football?!? On TV?!?

Posted by captainbeaky on February 6, 2008

svcarney_wideweb__470x4300.jpg

1st off apologies in advance for another very short post. I meant to write a bigger entry to fill you in on Boeing goings on (short version – still bored, doing training but a decent nights sleep helped wake me up), but Ive left it too late in the day, on account of going to the pub to watch the Australia vs Qatar World Cup qualifier. Turned out to be a pretty good match. The aussies were 3-0 up at half time and cruising, but that meant they just shut up shop and the 2nd half was pretty dull. Aussies were a bit sloppy and could have conceded a goal or 2, if it werent for the Qatar strikers having all the coordination of a drunken donkey, but the result is all that matters. PUb was pretty quiet, but the Melbourne Telstra Dome stadium was a sell out (51,000)

Anyway, enough waffle, as Im going to watch half hour of TV then go to bed. It may only be 10pm at the moment, but if I go to bed at the normal time (midnight) I will only get 5 hours kip.  Heres hoping that England dont choke tomorrow morning, and that Im doing something other than bloody training at work!

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