Sunday, January 08, 2006


In the last five years since the Blight left, I have been out a total of 7 times at night. I have been to the city once in 9 years and that was last year for the marriage equality rally. I've been to Monash Uni. twice, once by bus. So going out to grogblogging night is a big deal even if technically it's not grogblogging when I don't drink. And it's not as though we are really strangers either.

I put on my best dress and found the cockroach from the other night. The swine is now hiding in the wardrobe. I get out my shoes and there's a faded note, 'use bandaids, these hurt'. My handbag has a spider in it and I'm starting to feel a little Cinderellery. By the time I spackle the face and wrestle the hair into submission, I'm glad I've taken vows of spinsterhood. I change the necklace after I slam the drawer on the first one which snapped before I strangle myself and start to think that I'm too old for this. Being old means I came from a distant galaxy far, far, away where going out meant getting dressed up and not throwing on stretch pants and a T-shirt, (think Jabba the Hut wearing Target).

Then it's feed the cats, remember to leave the lights on and check knickers before shutting the front door. Don't laugh I've made it to the front gate before rushing back to grab them. Well, there's no point in having them on in the house, they wear out and they're expensive.

The train is on time but confuses me by going through Flinders Street before the loop so trying not to look like a tourist, I hop out, check the board and hop back. Then it's Melbourne Central, which was Museum the last time I used it. I walk out and feel like Alice in Chunderland. There are lights, shops, escalators that go up and up, flashing signs and a supermarket (?). The only word is garish, only word without the swearing. Signs are hidden or non-existant and I negotiate the multiple levels knowing that the sun is above, somewhere. My feet are hurting. By the time I stagger to QV square, they're more than hurting and I keep saying, 'If Ingrid Bergman could do it in The Inn of the Sixth Happiness, I can make it across the square.

I hit the restaurant, sit down and discreetly check for blisters, having plenty of bandaids. The feet have decided to by-pass blisters and go directly to flaying and three layers of skin are floating off the back of my heels. Women are the masters (mistresses?) of invention so I simple slipped off the shoes, bashed the backs down and wore them as slides. After a soda/lime/bitters and a handful of panadol, I started resembling a human again.

The company arrived and it was useless introducing ourselves by real name so it was blognames all round and instant recognition. Somebody please tell Tim Blair there wasn't a retard in sight.
After dinner and several video viewings of Mr. Lefty's new kitten, adorable, we wandered across the square to meet the rest of our bloggers for drinks. Big surprise, no retards here either.

I even managed to get a nice taxi driver home, an Ethiopian Coptic Christian who told me that today was their Christmas Day and described the celebrations. He was surprised I knew so much about his country although it was mostly the geology of the place. Mummy's little soldier was waiting by the gate to welcome me but managed to be at his food dish before I had the front door open. Cupboard love, I think they call it.

I'm glad I pushed and prodded myself to go. Going out alone to an unfamiliar place to meet, well not quite strangers takes a confidence I'm in short supply of. It was worth it to meet such an enjoyable and pleasant group of people but next time I'm wearing thongs.


joe2 said...

Nice one.Wish i had been able to attend,jt. As for the use of the term "retard". Forget it, because it is particularly offensive. Best picked up in the schoolyard and left there.
Tim Blair may well have used the term to describe those at groggblogging.More his prob.

Anyway,good to hear your report.

JahTeh said...

I think it should be one of those reverse insults. A good time was had by all, sorry you couldn't be there.

Gay Curmudgeon said...

I'm sorry that I missed the blessed event. It sounds like you all had a libelous time and I can only hope that I'm down there for some future grogblogging.

They have something like it here in Seattle but these yanks, I tell 'ye, they canna drink worth a damn!


R.H. said...

Grabbing nickers can give you a headache, that's what I've found, dames just don't like it.

Well there's always some pain to keep quiet about, a hidden blister. But seems you did well.

Good. And good account of it all. I like it.


The Editor said...

You have more courage than I, JahTeh. I would not have the guts to attend a similar event in Sydney, althought Link, Ron and I have agreed that we might one day have a mini-meet-up in the mountains. That's about the size of crowd I can handle.

Sounds like it was a great event nevetheless...

Lord Sedgwick said...

Just a quick g'day to say it was good to meet and put a face (and a blistered heel) to the blog. Also glad you came and made that people of our more generous years are represented at such gatherings.

Given half a chance ... a hip replacement, a formula one Zimmer frame and a preparatory afternoon nanny nap and we could show those young chaps and chapesses a thing or two ... other than wrinkles and fallen arches.

Lord Sedgwick said...

errrr ... "made sure that people"

Mother Sharon Damnable said...

I'm glad you had a good time, it must be brilliant to meet up with other Bloggers in real life *sigh*

Glad you remembered to put your knickers on though! here in UK knickers are called thongs and thongs are called flip flops!

Davoh said...

'Reverse insults' Sheesh where has Aussie culture gone. Drowned by the yankee 'Yee Har, fuck you, I'm the best." Oh well, wombats have their burrow.

BwcaBrownie said...

Mis J - I am so sorry i missed meeting you (houseguests and distance combined to keep me from you) but the CopperWitch is explained at His Excellencys blog - enviable gold my dear.
I don't read Tim Blair. fuck im.
a while back the online opinion australia blog, ran a daniel donahoo piece which they subbed 'sad old bloggers' implying we were shut-ins, and by continuing implication, that being shut-in means being a waste of oxygen.
I ripped into em. pah!

JahTeh said...

GC, Yanks have never been in our league when it comes to grogging.

rh, I'm spreading your secret to female bloggers everywhere, there'll be no knicker grabbing for you in future.

Davo, Try to make the next one, you'll be fine out of the burrow.

MD, Thong underwear is out, I'm more the Bridget Jones brigade.

Brownie, you were very much missed and as for sad old bloggers, I've been to more places and met more people in the last year than in the last 30 and they're keeping me young.

joe2 said...

Still reckon that terms like "retard" and "bat monkeys", are not needed in discussion.
All the best,politically correct,me.

JahTeh said...

joe2, it took me ages to work out batmonkeys but they are those flying things in the Wizard of Oz, aren't they?
Hated that film!

R.H. said...

I've heard of Tim Blair, but never seen his blog. So what did he say about 'retards'. Where's the posting?

Miriam said...

Well done for attending the Grogblogging on Friday. I still find it somewhat intimidating and I know some of the people outside of blogosphere!

By the way, thanks for your suggestion in my comments.

JahTeh said...

rh, see the grogblogging post at Anonymouslefty and I think it's in one of the comments.

Anonymous said...

From: Brownie
Date: Thursday, 28 April 2005 10:04 AM
To: Daniel Donahoo
Subject: Dear DD

"thanks for your reply - for the entire incident, I forgot one of my own rules that I am always saying to people: be really kind to everyone as you never
know their story. previously at I have been ridiculed for wanting people to be kind to gypsies in england who are apparently reviled."

What were those rules again Brownie?

quote [I ripped into em. pah!]