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20 August 2008 @ 10:48 pm
Spot more Olympics, and International Monopoly  
Apparently I can't avoid the Olympics no matter how much I try. After having everyone at work point out that the UK was ahead of Australia in the medal tally (a fact which I have graciously not brought up once), J has started to do the same. On the news tonight (the sensible, grown-up news), an Australian was interviewed outside the velodrome (the cycling arena where the UK had just swept up many of the medals). He was asked what he thought about the Brits. He replied –
"And there they were, winning gold medals, and taking it all in their stride, as though they did it every day. It was embarrassing [for us]!"

To which the interviewer replied: "Maybe they were in shock ..."

I was just having a glimpse at the cycling results, because I wanted to see if Anna Meares had taken the silver (I knew Victoria Pendleton would take the gold). She DID! This may not sound as exciting to you as it does to me, but that would be because you do not know that Anna broke her neck in a massive cycling accident in January and wore a special brace to support half her body so that she could exercise while she healed. She is genuinely impressive.

And then there was Sally McLellan. This 21-year-old Queenslander rather redeemed Olympic sport for me with her incredible joy at her silver in the 100m hurdles. The American won by a good margin, then four girls went over as one. While they waited anxiously for the results, Sally exchanged a few encouraging words with Canada's Priscilla Lopes-Schliep. Then the results flashed up, Sally was second, Priscilla third. They clutched each other's arms, and leapt around in circles squealing with glee. It was Total Girl. Delightful!!

Afterwards, Sally was called over by an Australian interviewer, and gave a brilliantly Queenslandish interview, including: "I knew I was out in front and I just thought, 'Holy Shit, just keep going'!"

The journalist asked about her start, and she goggled at him: "Were you watching?!"

I love her a little bit.

But since there's no one else interesting doing anything and the equestrian is over, that's probably my lot. So I can go back to disapproving of the IOC giving the games to China.

In other trashy news on the non-trashy news channel, the International edition of Monopoly was released today. People from around the world voted for their favourite cities and the top votes made it onto the board. Sydney was the only Australian city to make it on, in the red zone, alongside New York and London. There has been a wee bit of crowing, along the lines of Sydney is like New York! And Melbourne isn't there! Nyah nyah ne nyah nyah!!

I have two things to say to this. The first is that if I were a Sydney-based politico, I would not be that excited about having my city on a board that gives the Mayfair square to Montreal. And includes Gdynia, Vancouver  and Toronto (GOOD block voting there, Canadians!)

The second is that Sydney likes to believe it is like New York, but really it is like San Francisco at most. Melbourne also likes to believe it is like New York, but it is more like Seattle. Adelaide likes to believe it is like Seattle, but it is more like Boston. Brisbane likes to believe it is like Des Moines. It is.

Hobart, Perth and Darwin are all just happy someone has heard of them.

The final news moment? One of the genius gibbons in the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade left out in the open an internal memo discussing NZ Prime Minister Helen Clark in which it described her as rigid and untrusting. She, being amazingly cool, had a jolly good giggle.

I am behind on comments and editing the most boring report in the world in my after-work hours. Expect more mild diversions ...
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AMY 凛☆ラブ☆アタックtomatoe18 on August 20th, 2008 12:56 pm (UTC)
Hobart, Perth and Darwin are all just happy someone has heard of them.

Really? *is amused*
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 20th, 2008 01:01 pm (UTC)
They're reasonably small ...

Actually, that's a lie with respect to Perth these days, but the truth isn't funny.

Sorry to hear about your Great Uncle, I hope it was a quiet and easy death.
AMY 凛☆ラブ☆アタックtomatoe18 on August 20th, 2008 01:06 pm (UTC)
I always thought Perth and Darwin were reasonably well-known to non-Australians. :P

I needed Australian studies to know about Hobart.

Thanks. :) I'm off to see his family now... which means I'm committing a sin by still staying here and writing a reply. *hurries away*
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 20th, 2008 01:10 pm (UTC)
When you come back ... Darwin is well known to people in Asia. Alas, ask an American ... *sends hugs*
Pureblood Princessraitala on August 20th, 2008 12:58 pm (UTC)
Is there really a city called Gdynia? It got on the Monopoly board? I've never even heard of it *boggles*
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 20th, 2008 01:00 pm (UTC)
(Don't quote me, because I am rubbish at geography, but I think it might be the local spelling of Gdansk. However, by that measure, a concerted effort by Manchester could have borne results. Next time I am going to lobby for Wagga Wagga and Coventry.)
Pureblood Princessraitala on August 20th, 2008 01:06 pm (UTC)
That's ok, at least I've heard of Gdansk.

What, no Slough?
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 20th, 2008 01:09 pm (UTC)
You're right, that would be much better. Could we convince Cal to move there so she feels we're voting for her?
Pureblood Princessraitala on August 20th, 2008 01:13 pm (UTC)
I'm sure she'd love that :)

Actually, I think our efforts would be better spent getting Helsinki or Tallinn on the board. Maybe we can persuade Cal to move to Tallinn? Much nicer than Slough and Cal Jr. could grow up all multi-lingual and European.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 20th, 2008 01:15 pm (UTC)
You're right, I will stop agitating for Wagga Wagga and look to make Wellington the Antipodean entry, then we can focus on great cities by the Baltic we have loved. (I think Riga was the Park Lane equivalent, which is something.)
george pushdragonpushdragon on August 20th, 2008 01:09 pm (UTC)
Like the Melbourne-Sydney rivalry needed any more fuel ...

No board is truly international while it ignores Moscow and St Petersburg and the whole of South America, and I think Melbourne is in pretty good company with those cities and the likes of Prague, Stockholm, Dublin, Copenhagen, Geneva, and India too. They should have given it some mathematical sense by grouping the cities by cost of living - I think that would put Tokyo, NY, Sydney and London in the dark blue and green streets.

Thanks for the diversion!
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 20th, 2008 01:13 pm (UTC)
I deliver crappy news so that you do not need to watch it! But yes, very stupid. Canada is a lovely place, but THREE cities? Your rule for judging is far superior.
The Ramblings of an often very distracted person.annes_stuff on August 20th, 2008 01:22 pm (UTC)
"Adelaide likes to believe it is like Seattle, but it is more like Boston"

You mean Boston is just a big country town mascarading as a city with a lot of "old money" overly concerned with status and is generally just slow to change and accept new ideas. I might also add boring.

(Before anyone from Adelaide gets of perocial on me and accusing me of being from Melbourne, I was born and bred and SA and have lived in Adelaide for the last 9 years).


A question for people out there how does one use italics when commenting?
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 20th, 2008 01:25 pm (UTC)
type, without spaces < i > where you want the italics to start and < /i > where you want them to finish. Easy.

I was thinking more of artsy, stuffy and filled with church buildings. Too tired and brain dead to call, will try and ring from work tomorrow.
The Ramblings of an often very distracted person.annes_stuff on August 20th, 2008 01:30 pm (UTC)
Thanks.

Oh, sorry feeling a little over Adelaide at the moment (well, you already knew that).

That's cool, call me anytime tomorrow, I will need the diversion so I don't fall asleep at my desk.

Still trying to write that selection criteria for the AO3 position, good thing I checked the date and realised the deadline for submission is 5pm EST next Tuesday.
shoeboxer4life on August 20th, 2008 02:53 pm (UTC)
[The second is that Sydney likes to believe it is like New York, but really it is like San Francisco at most. Melbourne also likes to believe it is like New York, but it is more like Seattle. Adelaide likes to believe it is like Seattle, but it is more like Boston. Brisbane likes to believe it is like Des Moines. It is.]

I almost spit out my coffee laughing at the end of this! I've only been to Australia once and it was just to Canberra! I know, I know. I was broke but missed my boyfriend and that's where he was, so that was it. So then Canberra would be like...
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 20th, 2008 03:00 pm (UTC)
It's a toss-up between the Mall of America and Utah, but with government instead of Mormonism.

(There are actually some cool things in Canberra, and it is the only capital with kangaroos. Hope you can make it to Sydney or Melbourne next time!)
shoeboxer4life on August 20th, 2008 03:28 pm (UTC)
My husband (that boyfriend I visited for smexin') LOVED Melbourne. I actually enjoyed Canberra. His bedroom was quite nice. :) No, seriously, we toured the Parliament building and it was so awesome. Under ground! Symbolism all over the place! Loved it.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 20th, 2008 03:32 pm (UTC)
It is cool! You'd like Melbourne, brilliant shopping! And underground bars ...
romaine24: coffeecupsromaine24 on August 20th, 2008 04:55 pm (UTC)
Since I grew up in San Francisco and now live in Seattle, I shall have to travel and see if the comparisons fit. :)

I know others have mentioned this, but your posts are so wonderful to read while having my morning coffee. Er, I have learned not sip it until finished.
Shivshiv5468 on August 20th, 2008 05:39 pm (UTC)
We keep winning things. I'm not sure I know how to cope with that. It's unnatural and unBritish.
i can see your house from herewho_la_hoop on August 20th, 2008 10:09 pm (UTC)
Aren't we're allowed to win things as long as we're fearfully embarrassed about it, and lose dreadfully the next time around to make up for it?
Shivshiv5468 on August 20th, 2008 10:14 pm (UTC)
But we're gloating, and enjoying it. And celebrating it. It's not right.


You know it's going to end in tears at 2012
i can see your house from herewho_la_hoop on August 20th, 2008 10:37 pm (UTC)
I don't see so much the gloating... I see the boggling! Even the TV presenters have a kind of dazed, OMG expression. It's fabulous. I kind of enjoy it when they have to say the words "our first medal in gymnastics for eighty billion years!" It makes me feel proud for our many years of failures, lmao.
Shivshiv5468 on August 20th, 2008 10:39 pm (UTC)
Still the football was shit. We've still that to be miserable about.
i can see your house from herewho_la_hoop on August 20th, 2008 10:46 pm (UTC)
But I don't like football. Can I be miserable about not liking that? (Though, if prompted, I can sing the Chelsea song and look sincere - my grandad attempted the brainwashing thing but only with limited success!)
Shivshiv5468 on August 20th, 2008 10:50 pm (UTC)
I do like football, but at the very least we can be consoled that hubris has found it's sacrifice in that team tonight.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 21st, 2008 05:29 pm (UTC)
It's mostly the cycling and rowing, those are traditional.
Shivshiv5468 on August 21st, 2008 05:39 pm (UTC)
Not that traditional. We were traditionally shit at everything.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 21st, 2008 05:45 pm (UTC)
Oh not so, we've always been good in the rowing, and there have usually been cyclists winning medals, they were just usually silver or bronze. The current spate of golds there was ... surprising.
This Girlthisgirl_is on August 20th, 2008 05:56 pm (UTC)
The thing about Helen is that those things are completely true. (Untrusting? Duh, she's a national leader*.)It's just that she also has an excellent sense of humour, which a lot of people don't seem to get.

I have not managed to watch any olympics yet. I tried to watch the men's gymnastics, but my pc would not let me. :o(

* That's national with a lower case "n" as in leader of a nation, as opposed to National with an upper case "N" because that is a whole different thing.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 21st, 2008 05:28 pm (UTC)
I love her, I still remember when the Ansett debacle went down and she was trapped in an AirNZ plane in Melbourne and she said "Well, I have a long history of supporting union action ..."
The Elephant in the Roompennswoods on August 20th, 2008 09:19 pm (UTC)
Brisbane likes to believe it is like Des Moines. It is.

LOL! I gotta visit Brisbane!
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 21st, 2008 05:28 pm (UTC)
If you like rivers, casinos and humidity, you'll LOVE Brisbane!
nahimanaemerald_dragon8 on August 23rd, 2008 11:37 pm (UTC)
Hey! Brisbane has more to offer than that. You're badmouthing the birth place of 90% for my family, you know.
i can see your house from herewho_la_hoop on August 20th, 2008 10:09 pm (UTC)
I want to know which city scored the 'Old Kent Road' spot... and whether they rose up in protest, burning Monopoly boards merrily as they went.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 21st, 2008 05:27 pm (UTC)
Gdansk, and they were modestly happy to see themselves represented in an international context that does not feature the phrase "overrun by ..."
Randy: Cabaret2drgaellon on August 20th, 2008 11:23 pm (UTC)
I would not be that excited about having my city on a board that gives the Mayfair square to Montreal.
Mayfair square? Which one is that? Presumably the same as the US Park Place. (You know that the original Monopoly board was based on Atlantic City, New Jersey, yes?)

The second is that Sydney likes to believe it is like New York, but really it is like San Francisco at most. Melbourne also likes to believe it is like New York, but it is more like Seattle. Adelaide likes to believe it is like Seattle, but it is more like Boston. Brisbane likes to believe it is like Des Moines. It is.
THAT is hysterically funny.

Even New York isn't much like New York any more, between Guliani and Bloomburg, and the Disnification of Times Square and the British MegaMusicals... *sigh*

Edited at 2008-08-20 11:29 pm (UTC)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 21st, 2008 05:25 pm (UTC)
I have heard this, and yet I have never seen a real, live American board.

And Brisbane is at least better than Canberra!
Randydrgaellon on August 21st, 2008 05:46 pm (UTC)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monopoly_(game)
There's an HTML simulacrum of the US board on the Wikipedia page! (Constructed using the table function, apparently.)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 22nd, 2008 02:25 am (UTC)
Thank you! And all of a sudden a whole lot of popular culture references make sense ...
Randy: HolyHandGrenadedrgaellon on August 22nd, 2008 03:15 am (UTC)
You can see an image of the actual US-standard board here: http://central.kaserver5.org/PlayK/Monopoly/US.html
Bryoneybryoneybrynn on August 21st, 2008 12:12 am (UTC)
Fear us Canadians - we are not many, but we are organized! lol
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 21st, 2008 05:24 pm (UTC)
I do fear you! It's bigger than Turkey and Attaturk for Time's Man of the Millennium
timorous beastie: lizzy bennetjackieohno on August 21st, 2008 05:46 am (UTC)
Singapore has only won ONE measly medal this year, but we are quite thankful for it because we haven't won a single medal since 1960. Yes, 1960. Heh. I'm not sure why we suck so badly at sports, but I think it might be because we are a nation of nerds, not jocks.

Also, I have heard of all three cities!! Admittedly I only know of Hobart because I hooked with a Tasmanian boy from there once. Hee.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 21st, 2008 05:21 pm (UTC)
GO SINGAPORE! The Australians are all "What happened? Where did our medals go?" and I am saying to them "This is a teeny tiny country and is being beaten by much bigger populations, shut up."

And nerds will inherit the world, you know. Especially ones who know their geography ;-)
Meredythmeredyth_13 on August 21st, 2008 06:04 am (UTC)
It takes a great deal of energy to repress my embarrassingly fangirlish impulses to tell you 'I love you' because I know that it's a patently obnoxious phrase in that context. BUT ... there are times when you make my insides go all warm and gooey. This would be one of them.

I would add that I think Sydney lacks a lot in comparison to San Francisco, Melbourne is rather more like Boston (IMHO) and you have totally hit Brisbane on the head (and don't we wish someone would?). I haven't been to Seattle. *ponders*

Darwin? Is that in Africa?

My olympic boycott is going strong. I did suspend it for about 10 minutes to watch the synchronised swimming - because a) I don't really consider it an olympic sport, and b) OMG, it's the silliest thing ever, but damn those girls are talented.

I'm waiting for someone to do 'So you think you can Sync' - I suspect it will be BIG! The double meaning in the title alone should earn a Golden Logie!

I have a lap full of hot furry pussy. >.>
blamebramptonblamebrampton on August 21st, 2008 05:23 pm (UTC)
I have to confess that I was basing my boston and Seattle comments on people I know from there as I have never actually made it to either (the SHAME!).

Sydney is like SF lite, with the attitude being the key connection. But it's San Francisco crossed with Dunedin in many ways.

You should TOTALLY copyright SYTYCS. That's your fortune right there!
nahimanaemerald_dragon8 on August 23rd, 2008 11:34 pm (UTC)
Hobart, Perth and Darwin are all just happy someone has heard of them.

And apparently Canberra doesn't even rate a mention! We have to go and cry into our coffee mugs now.

I like Brisbane. And Canberra - sure, they're not big cities, but I'm a country girl (I was born in Rockhampton) - they're a good speed, and they have everything you need.

That isn't to say I'm not desperate to visit New York, San Francisco and London next year.