The human body just requires too much maintenance.

Wednesday, 4 January 1995

Well, Happy New Year Sis. I hope you had, as the saying goes, a good ‘un. Personally I went to bed at 11:00pm, I’ve never been one for celebrating such occasions. Thanks for the book and juggling balls, I picked them up from the post office today. I’ve since discovered that half the office can juggle with ease, leaving me looking like a juggler who’s just had a stroke.

I spoke to Mum yesterday on the phone and she said you called on New Year’s Eve and that it was snowing heavily. Did you get a white Christmas? I escaped Dad’s Family Festivities by pretending to go to this hippy ConFest thing. I ended up leaving my ticket at work. I did half intend to go, but I left the office with one too many beers in my belly after the work break-up do and I left it in my top desk draw. So I sent a card and letter to Nana and called on the day.  The first thing Pop says to me when he gets on the phone is “Eh, haven’t heard or seen ya forra long time. Where ya been?” which is Pop all over. And Mum needn’t have worried about leaving me alone for Christmas, I don’t think I’ve ever had such a chat-filled day. First I spoke to you, then Mum, then Dad on his car phone on the way down to Nana’s making sure I’m going to call, and then Nana and Pop and Dad again saying in a very serious voice “Thanks for ringin’ Digger, thanks for that.”  I hope Nana and Pop were out of earshot when he said that, it makes it sound like he forced me to ring. I rang at about three o’clock when they were all asleep from gorging themselves. I think it was a good time to call, how many of the troops did you have to chat to?

Mum sounds like she had a good time in Queensland, even with the heat. I kinda wish I’d gone, but I would have been a miserable bastard the whole time. So I spent my Christmas break (all 10 days of it) lounging around the house, gettin’ fatter, getting pissed, watching videos. I’m paying for it now though, I’ve got a mini pot-gut, so I walked to work this morning, which is no mean feat. What is a mean feat? Anyway I spent an hour and a half pounding the pavement, and I’ve still got a gut. An hour and a half. This is a significant period of time for J to exercise, and J expects significant results. The human body just requires too much maintenance. I want a sleeker model with automatic fat expulsion and all-leather-cow interior. I wonder if you can sue your parents for giving you fat-retention genes?

Friday, 6 January 1995

Shit, what a night I had last night. Big thunderstorms and my house started to leak. The “flashing” on the bathroom window was leaking and water was running down the wall. So I go outside, in the rain and sticky tape and nail up a cut-off piece of garbage bag over the leak while I’m standing on an extremely dubious fold-out plastic chair specifically not designed for the purpose. At least I got a peek at my next door neighbours backyard. It’s quite nice. A pleasant assortment of plants and a little outdoor setting. Made me feel a bit ashamed to tell the truth. So number one priority tonight after getting paid is to go down to McEwens Hardware and buy some rain-proof tape and some other stuff I need about the place.

I saw a self-defence class advertisement on the way to work this morning. It was different to your average self-defence class. It said that there’s no Japanese involved no “Your mind is your greatest weapon” bullshit, and it specialises in moves like the eye-gouge and choke-hold. This sounds like my cup of tea, street fighting stuff which would actually be useful. I mean, how are you supposed to ‘focus your mind” and “be as one with the Universe” when some knob-end smacks you in the back of your head in a nightclub? You can’t just turn around and say “Oh wow, like, just wait a minute while I focus my energies and balance my yin and yang, OK?”

Thirty minutes later….

Far out! You wouldn’t believe what just happened! We’re having really huge thunderstorms right, and it was hailing really hard, so I went to the window to check it out, like everyone does, as if they’ve never seen rain or hail in their life, and I was walking back across the office to my desk when I spotted that some of the roof had caved in and water was pouring in over thousands of dollars worth of books. So like a hero, no – a superhero – I leaped into the breach and started tossing boxes out of the rain. I tell you, I know the frenzy of battle now. Why, it could have been raining acid and I wouldn’t have cared.  Anyway, I got soaked. Now I’m typing this wearing someone else’s t-shirt emblazoned with “Coca-Cola” while mine dries on a heater down the back along with my shoes and socks. Definitely the highlight of the week.

And on that note, it’s time I went. Until next time….

J

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