Otterday! And Open Thread.

Today’s wee otter, via The Daily Squee, is enjoying its fishsicle.

Watch Out For Brain Freeze! Otter gnawing on an iceblock with lots of embedded fishies

Please feel free to use this thread to natter about anything your heart desires. Is there anything great happening in your life? Anything you want to get off your chest? Reading a good book (or a bad one)? Anything in the news that you’d like to discuss? What have you created lately? Commiserations, felicitations, temptations, contemplations, speculations?

Categories: Life

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27 replies

  1. I discovered today that in the UK, otters are a big check on the invasive mink population. Yay for otters!
    (Mink may not deserve to be made into coats, but they’re very damaging to the wildlife).

  2. I am still really pissed off about the street harassment I witnessed yesterday. I keep feeling like I should have done something but there’s no way I’m drawing some fuckhead’s ire with me baby strapped to me. I’m not so naive as to think that’d protect me. I hate the idea that MY assertiveness will fix this shit, that *I* need to do something. That I just need to take a course and it’ll fix this shit.
    I took a course, I learnt a few things. It didn’t stop me being raped because it doesn’t prepare you for friends turning out to be anything but. It doesn’t prepare you for standing there with a child on your chest wondering just how bad it’s going to get before you have to say something and if so, just how bad is it going to be?

  3. Man, I wish I had an ice-cream as big as myself. Probably not fish-flavoured, though.
    Fun fact: You can write in extra candidates on the House of Representatives ballot, as long as you preference them very last. You can also use roman numerals, written-out numbers in any language, or consecutive letters, instead of consecutive numbers.
    @geekanachronism – well that’s a sucky situation to be in. Funny how the bystanders always get blamed for not doing something, instead of the harasser being condemned for doing what they’re doing.

  4. @geek_anachronism: I’m sorry you witnessed and experienced such a horrible thing. It’s natural to freeze up and not do anything after you’ve already been a victim of a violent crime, don’t mentally punish yourself for that. And the instinct to protect one’s baby is pretty strong in parents, so don’t feel bad for that either. There were lots of people around, yes? Any one of them without a bubbah strapped to their chest could have done something. It’s a broken society, not a failure on your part.
    Well, everyone, I’m on a new painkiller, and it’s reaaaally weird. It’s called Lyrica and it’s not unlike having a toke after you pop one of these things. It’s easing off as my body gets used to the pill, but I’m a bit swollen around the stomach, my fingers had a moment of fluid retention last night and it makes me reaaaally sleepy. Or that could be the late nights. Apparently, the pill kind of sedates the nervous system. I was worried that meant that I couldn’t see God with my Fun Department, but I tested this hypothesis (Lyrica + Nacey = No Visits to the Almighty Via Vulva) and it turned out that this wasn’t the case. Thank you, Jeebus.
    I’m enjoying the novelty of not being in actual horrible pain. It’s like, Wow, I can stand up for a while! I can sit around and NOT want to lie down again! Wow! Hopefully, with this pill and good pain management, I can get my life back on track. One downside of the pill is that it makes me nauseous (just a bit) and apparently, it makes some women put on loads of weight. I hope I’m not one of those women. Not that I’d mind too much if I were bigger, but I’d have to buy new clothes and I really can’t afford that. 😦
    Still seeing dude, it seems to be going well. I hope it continues that way, cause I am quite fond of this fellow. He’s lovely. 🙂

    • @napalmnacey, yay to effective pain meds and lovely dude!
      @TAK, I’m glad you’re looking forward to scrutineering. Goodonya.
      Generally, yay for the glory of otters. Purely in the hope of finding something newsworthy regarding otters to add to this thread, I have just discovered via Google that a place on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast is offering a personal encounters with their otters package:

      Otterly Outrageous FUN!
      Take part in a world first Otter Adventure! UnderWater World is the only place in the world where you can physically interact with these amazing animals!
      Mayhem, Kaos and Lou will run circles around you trying to get your attention! They will make themselves comfortable in your lap, pose for the camera and position themselves on your head all in the name of fun!

      They limit it to 2 paying customers in the enclosure at a time, and it costs $150 per person, but I think I know what I want for my birthday next year.

  5. “Fun fact: You can write in extra candidates on the House of Representatives ballot, as long as you preference them very last. You can also use roman numerals, written-out numbers in any language, or consecutive letters, instead of consecutive numbers.”
    Yes, but I’d really advise you not to. I’ve scrutineered (watched them count the votes) at each state and federal election since 1996, and the level of knowledge about what counts as a formal vote varies wildly between electoral officials. I have seen whether a vote is formal or informal come down to how persuasively each scrutineer argues.
    If the count’s close it will be redone later, but again, scrutineers will be there trying to argue that your vote is invalid, and if you want your vote to count I don’t think it’s worth the risk.

  6. I told some of my students that I was planning to vote for Julia because she’s got red hair like me. I’m not sure that they got the joke.

  7. Just watched some otters being fed at the zoo this morning. They are good for the soul. My 2 1/2 year old (who was not quick to start talking) has suddenly learnt a huge chunk of the alphabet, recognizing letters all over the place. Is this about the time that usually happens?

    • My 2 1/2 year old (who was not quick to start talking) has suddenly learnt a huge chunk of the alphabet, recognizing letters all over the place. Is this about the time that usually happens?

      I think the age that it starts to happen is fairly variable, but the pattern of suddenly grokking the concept of the symbology and learning much/most of it in pretty much one hit is fairly standard in my experience.

  8. @Rebekka
    You’re right, I was probably being a bit too enthusiastic. I just finished the AEC training course and am just really happy about passing. Those two examples (writing in your own candidate as the last preference and using roman numerals) were specific questions on the exam, so I figured all the scrutineers would be up to spec on that.
    So: if you’re at my polling booth next week, go nuts! Otherwise, be sensible, for whatever definition of sensible you prefer.
    Glad you’ve found some effective pain management, though the name of the drug sounds like it makes you burst into random showtunes.

    Hey, the marriage-equality rally was on the news and we all looked very sexy.

  9. Ah, The Amazing Kim – I don’t suppose they taught you much about what the accessibility codes on the website mean? When I search for polling places (there’s no option to search for accessible places, only polling places in general), I just get results broken down into “Full wheelchair access”, “Wheelchair assisted” (What does that mean?), or blankness.
    I can find nothing on the AEC website about accessible parking, walking distances, wayfinding, accessible seating while in queues and registration, scooter accessibility (longer wheelbase than wheelchairs, so what is accessible to one may not be to the other), or anything else that might be actually useful.
    (And before anyone asks – no, a postal vote or a ‘wait outside and someone will bring you a ballot paper’ aren’t actually accessibility. I want to be able to vote IN my local polling place (currently listed as “wheelchair assisted”), with all my neighbours, like everyone else does. Just like I’d like to be able to get in and out of classrooms and other school buildings in public schools. Not-so-surprisingly, these two inaccessibility issues are very closely linked…)
    Out of interest, there are exactly four polling places listed under my electorate as being accessible – and two of them are the central Perth polling place and Rottnest Island. Another is a good 15-20 minutes drive away. How are your electorates looking?

    • @lauredhel, that’s an aggravating level of non-accessibility there.
      I know that my own closest local polling place is theoretically accessible, if you could organise to go through the service entrance to the canteen that’s part of the school hall, or around through the back entrance, but it’s not listed as accessible on the website. The next closest polling location is fully accessible.
      I suspect I’m hugely fortunate – within 2 km of where I live there are 4 “full wheelchair access” and 3 “wheelchair assisted” polling places. I suppose that’s one of the advantages of living in a densely populated conurbation.

  10. I’m imagining PO’d people descending en masse to the non-accessible voting places in these!

  11. Aargh, the script ate my code!

  12. And again, even though I used the link button!

    • The link button only works if you’ve highlighted some text – all the buttons are text formatting buttons, so they don’t work except on text.
      That said, that is one hell of a pic!

  13. Well, for my electorate (Brand) there’s a few “wheelchair assisted” polling places (fairly new-ish primary schools, in other words), but the nearest fully wheelchair accessible place is in the electorate of Fremantle at the Wattleup community hall (I’m in Parmelia, which translates to “Kwinana East”). What surprises me is that the local high school isn’t a polling place – there’s a number of primary schools (our nearest is 1.28km away) but the Kwinana High School (which is pretty centrally located and has plenty of bus access) isn’t being used.

  14. My electorate (Sturt) looks good on paper: of 42 polling places, only one is inaccessible, 14 are assisted access, and the rest are fully accessible. My local polling place is good with respect to space to move – it’s the local high school gym, so there is level access, and big wide doors. I don’t know about accessibility parking, but I’ll check when I drive past this morning.

  15. Just drove past. No accessibility parking. But I wonder if they will put temporary signs out next Saturday?

    • Argh – my back is playing up today – I might need to know about accessibility requirements next week more than I thought!
      About to go for a gentle walk on flat ground in the sun to see if it helps.

  16. You have sun? You have SUN?

  17. No sun here.

    Two polling places one assisted access one no access. The assisted access one is up a small step. A scooter would make it I think (about an inch maybe an inch and a half). Doors wide enough for scooters too. One disabled parking spot close by on the same side of the street, two around the corner and a couple across the road in the same block.

    • I’ve had approximately the last nine hours away from the computer, and this has been Good For Me.
      Although watching Inception at the cinema (since the sun teasingly disappeared 5 minutes before we were due to head out the door) probably did my back no favours, sushi and sashimi for dinner was The Win.

  18. New season of True Blood time! Woot!

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