Category Archives: Pooch Power

Washing up at the wash up.

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At my wick's end.

(The one where I do not let go of the dinner party hosting – yet).

According to Angelfire, there are six signs of a “good host”.

“1.  Once seated at the table, no one should ever have to ask for a refill”. 

That.  That is a thing that is not an issue in this household.  Ever.

(Special guest stars – in order of appearance: Wynns Coonawarra Estate ’11 Riesling, Mâcon-Villages ’10 Chardonnay, Yarra Valley Sticks ’10 Pinot Noir, Macedon Ranges Zig Zag Rd ’06 Cabernet Sauvignon).

Didn’t consult buddy pal James Halliday on any of these, but they did the trick.  Enough said.
“2.  Avoid blinding your guests with candles or obstructing their views of each other with large flower arrangements or large centerpieces. Do not use scented candles- they can have an unappetizing effect”. 

Hm.  Possibly me and my feelings for candles have been guilty parties at other parties regarding this minor matter.

(Shut up).

Still.

My only duties pre-show revolved around all things floral and wax.

Whatever.

There are a lot of wicks to set on fire about this place.  A lot.  And I love lighting them quite frankly.  It’s not so much the lighting, per se – well.  Well, it’s when you have enough of them burning.  Together…

(It’s pretty, ok?  Geez!)

Anyway, anyway.  Appetites, spirit and reason remained in-da house.  (Plato still pops his head in the door of my life).

“3.  Help guests shine in conversation. Stop a bore from droning on. Steer away from topics that might cause arguments or offend someone”. 

Um.  Alright.  This is where we perhaps strayed into remotely Bret Easton Ellis territory.

But.  It is important to be topical.  (Isn’t it?)  Not our fault if politics and religion are waiting impatiently at Australia’s express check-out right now.  (Is it?)

(After all…)

We are talking the evening directly following the day the ALP National Conference went down.  The one with the airing of some interesting topics.  Marriage equality, offshore processing, lifting bans on uranium to India.  You know, little stuff.

(Stuff that’s interesting to talk about).

Also.

Not our fault if one of our (co-host and I) most entertaining stories to tell involves some great Jerry Springer moments.  (One headline reads: Family Performs Exorcism at Birthday Party).

There is that –

(Stuff that’s interesting to talk about to strangers).

Whatever, whatever.   I think the big things playing on your feelings and emotions should be discussed.  Out in the open and all.  More so to strangers than anyone…

Think: skewed-social-litmus-test here.  After all, at least you know where you all stand, sit, or fall flat on your face with one another.

Turns out: I think we’re all on the same page about many things.  T and L have not run for The Grampians… yet.

“4.  When serving, place food in distinct areas on each plate. If all the courses won’t fit on a single plate, make sure you provide an extra small one”. 

Say whaaa?

I don’t understand this point at all.  Probably got something to do with the fact that I can’t be bothered reading the whole sentence.

(Still, I guess I can be slow on the uptake).

Whatever:  the food did done real good, it did.

(No thanks to me.  I spent the entire time at the kitchen bar being useless.  Well, it’s just… Fine.  Fine.  I had my hands full, ok?  One hand on my iPhone, the other on a Bulmers, laptop on my lap.  Research).

Anyway, anyway.

Two different curries:  Vegetarian and a Chicken/Pistachio.  I’d give you the fab recipes.  Both from Crispen Pants.  But, you know, copyright infringements are my excuse today.  Amazing flat-bread to accompany (I’ll suss out the maker on that one).

Then…Dessert was this jaw-dropping stunner: Vanilla semifreddo with pistachio praline.  And…and… raspberry coulis.

(‘Like’)

(Despite my best intentions I didn’t get photographic evidence.  Too busy with my hands full.  This time with the wine.  You’ll have to amuse yourself looking at my candles).

“5.  Before dessert is served, the table should be completely cleared of all dishes from the previous courses. This includes wine glasses, salt and pepper shakers, and condiments dishes”.

May not have pulled this one off either.  It’s highly unlikely I’d ever move a wine glass unless it was toward my mouth.  The other stuff might have been moved though.  (I don’t like anything getting in the way of my dessert).

There are probably some other rules too –

“Make sure you cook the chicken” and “don’t glass the guests” immediately spring to mind.  We pulled those off better than well.

Oh.  Oh…

But this one –   this one we may have had some memory issues on:

Do not serve the dogs something different to their normal diet.  And if you do…. If you dare to… do not let them within 500 feet of your guests.

(Sorry guys, hope you’d finished eating by then).

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No Rush. Really.

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Career criminals: Exhibits 'A' and 'E'

This.  This is what I did not watch last night.  Despite the fact that it had infiltrated my mind (and soul) many other Thursday nights.  (Hey, hey.  I watch The Slap on ABC net, ok?  Besides, I went into that one knowing we were intense and short-term only).

Decision makers at Channel 10 might as well have stabbed me in the heart when presenting the fact that last Thursday was the final Rush ever (ever…ever).

Catherine McClements.  Gone.  Rodger Corser, Jolene Anderson, Callum Mulvey, Samuel Johnson, Nicole da Silva and co… nary a goodbye wave between them.

(silence)

…..

I have been told that when it comes to engaging with those people and situations speaking at me from within television sets and what not, that I am “fussy”.

Well.  Get this straight.  I am.  With a capital freaking F.

Don’t get me wrong – we are not talking the type of Fussy that needs: high quality scripts, thoughtful performances, award-winning direction and flawless editing.  Sometimes.

Sometimes I need some of those things.  But when you take a good long hard look at the stellar list of my “must watches”, you will see that this….  this is not always the case, you will see.

(You don’t think I’m going to present that list right here at this very moment, do you?)

Silly!  That would detract from many other inane blog posts that I could be making on other days!  You will see (soon enough) that the tele-box (and associates) are quite often like my own form of gravity.

So.

Rush.  (One show that fulfilled many of the Fuss).

There is none.

Looks like we’re done, huh?

It will be months before I can talk about you.  Dissect our relationship (and my feelings about you) properly.  I will, however, say this:  any tv show that can bandy about the term vagina cologne” with such aplomb should be kept on and in the air until I am buried.

That is all I will say on that matter.

Looks like I’ll just have to revert to the endless list of other copsfluff shows that I fawn over.  But.  If you think I’ll revert to popular opinion such as NCIS, Law and Order (any departmental type) or other nonsense… Well.  You have got another thing coming.

No, siree.  I am way classier (and stuff) than that rubbish.

Stop pretending you don’t know what class is when it comes to cop shows.  You know what it is.  It is copsfluffclass is what it is.  The kind that seems to be dominated by the Canadians for starters: Rookie Blue! Flashpoint!  Castle! Or the other type that relies on the serious business of being serious, or seriously melodramatic: Criminal Minds! Prime Suspect! Chicago Code! (They canned that one too, but I’m not above repeats).

And with things so dire on the Aussie front, I’ll bust out the VHS for Cop Shop if I have to.

Whatever.  Whatever.  One woman’s trash is another ones treasure.

Anyways.  It’s not all terribly, bad, me-needing comfort news.

I have real life cop action happening right here in my backyard main street, I do.  Huh!  It’s tantamount to me and my dogs being central to a reality tv piece, actually.

Actually, it is.

Just two days ago, no later than 3pm, me and the pooches were stopped right dead in the middle of Main Road Hepburn by the D-squad.  (The Daylesford cop shop is right near the Neighbourhood Centre.   I’ve booked in for an excursion next week).  We were innocently on our hell-bent way to our wonderful local fruit & vege shop Tonna’s.  (Re-stock for salad days on the busy agenda).  All things innocent soon turned a frown with impending dramatics though.

It was pretty dramatic.

Seriously, if you are not sitting down, I suggest you do.  You’re going to need to be seated is all I am saying.

The drama came in 3 waves.  (As these things do).

1)      It was odd.  Perculiar, even.  I have seen the D-squad vehicle with police decals only one other time in the history of my almost three months of being here.

I let out a gasp, people.  A gasp.

The excitement of seeing them with their RBT kits and three witches hats guiding the three car strong traffic queue (that was the total traffic in the street, people) had me giddy.  So giddy that I was clutching at straws and seatbelts trying to remember if I had had a drink with alcoholic content in the past 24 hours.

I had not (is what I finally remembered when I came to my sensibilities).

2)      I realised (when my senses were in the place they were originally), that I was, in fact, already breaking the l.a.w and order.

Der-Der (Insert Law and Order scene break music here… not that I’ve watched it or anything).

Technically speaking it was not me breaking the law.  It was Evie and Augie (the dog-children).  But I (the good mother that I am) take full responsibility for them and their actions.  (Mainly).

Do you want to know what they were doing?  (Actually, what they were not doing).  No?  Well, you’re going to hear about it anyway.

They were not wearing their doggy harness-seatbelts is what they were doing (or not doing, whatever the case may be).  In fact, I’d left the house scoffing at the harnesses – Essentially thumbing at them.

Here’s what went down then:

I looked at them (the dog-children, patiently seated together in the front passenger seat).  And they, in return, looked at me.  I then (cautiously, I might add) looked at the one car in front of me and took a sly sideways glance at the police officers.  (The dogs were still looking at me).  Contemplating a quick, illegal u-turn and getaway, I instead opted for the sane option:

I proceeded to yank the (human) seatbelt over the dogs.  (Dogs still looking at me).

That’s right, I pulled the seatbelt over them.

To say that I may not have been thinking as clearly as I thought I may have been thinking is probably an understatement here.

The crooked smirks the dogs were giving me jolted me back to the situation at hand though.

I quickly pretended the aforementioned action I had taken – did not – in fact happen.  I merely (with some panic) unclasped them from the (human) seatbelt.  I then chuckled to myself about how ridiculous I was being and said to the dogs: “I’d rather go down for the seatbeltless dogs crime”.  What’s more, I pondered “This would be as bad as things could get”.

Wrong.

3)      I carefully, quietly, and (with extreme caution) approached a safe position alongside the pleasant lady police officer person.  I bit my bottom lip and kept my foot on the brake.  Forgetting other safety precautions such as putting the car into neutral or levering the handbrake on, I simply looked at her (somewhat bemused) face.  (My subconscious speaks loudly at the best of times.  In this case I think it was preparing to do a runner).

Pleasant police officer looks through the window and smiles at me – and then smiles at the dogs.

Ok, so things were looking up.

But.

With some pleasantries aside and without bothering to check my licence (or road laws concerning unharnessed dogs apparently), nice police lady sticks the tube toward me with a look on her face that suggests she wonders how many Pimms I’ve had today.

Then.

All hell breaks loose.

Augie, it appears, is rather protective of us girls.

Especially when there are blue people in powerful positions peering down at us sticking (what could be contrived as a thin, white, tubular gun) in my face.

He growled.  Loudly.  Guttural to boot.

And.  Then.  He lunged.

I tell no lie.  He lunged (wish I had them buckled in after all) toward (probably now not smiling) police officer lady and barked at her.  Loudly.  Teeth bared, I might add.

I caught him though.  In the nick of time.  Thank the gods of Good Lady Luck land.

Somehow…somehow… I managed to keep my foot on the brake, dog in my hands and a smile on my face.

“Sorry” (or, at least that is what I think I might have said, if anything did even squeak out of my dry vocal cords).

(You can pipe in if you think this was not an adequate approach).

Well.

Quite frankly, after what ensued, I will be forever cheering on the girls in blue – at least in this town anyway.  After some tentative chuckling and off-handed comments about “fierce beasts” and “not going to get my hand bitten off, am I’s?” (especially after Augie barked and lunged for the second time)… the good lady police officer merely let me have my three awkward attempts at blowing in the bag and then…

Said “Have a good day”.

And she let me go.  Didn’t even need to post bail.

Now, that – that, is impressive policing work, I say.  Catherine McClements: this lady did done you proud.

….

Not a dramatic enough ending for you?

Well, Rush exited without blazing gunfire too.