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We have a list of things we need to sell! For collection from Taringa in Brisbane, Qld. We need to know ASAP re some of these - by tomorrow (Tuesday 3 April) - and will note which ones.

Some of them we will need til we leave the country, but you could pick them up on 12 April at the latest. Most things can be picked up now.

Rough prices are next to each item. Prices are negotiable to an extent.


1 x outdoor table / 2 x benches - $70

1 x 3 seater couch + 2 x armchairs - $70

1 x 4-6 seater table + 4 chairs - $50

4 x Ikea chairs - $5 each

1 x computer chair with wheels - old - $15

1 x large high back with arms office chair with wheels - $30

1 x small coffee table - $5

1 x computer chair with wheels - good quality - $30

1 x computer chair with wheels - ripped seat - $10

1 x TV stand with 5 levels - $30

2 x small Ikea bookshelves - $5 each

1 x large glass top Ikea desk and hutch - $100

1 x computer desk with wheels - $30


1 x Fisher & Paykel front loader washing machine (very good condition) - $300

1 x Wii (white) plus 2 controllers plus Wii Games: WiiFit (and board), Resident Evil 4, Red Steel, Metroid Prime 3, Resident Evil Umbrella Chronicles, Link's Crossbow Training, WiiSports, Super Mario Galaxy - $100

1 x DVD player - $30

1 x toaster - $5

1 x microwave - old but functional - large - $20

1 x microwave - smaller and in good condition - $25

1 x Fisher & Paykel fridge/freezer - very good condition - large - $375 

1 x 50" Panasonic flatscreen TV - as new - with warranty to 2015 - $850

Please let us know ASAP by commenting below, Twitter @Rowena_SW or email r.spechtwhyte@gmail.com


* Excitement may or may not be included.

16 February 2009 @ 06:33 pm

On another online medium, a friend posted that they wanted to make out with Edward Cullen, of Twilight, both book and movie, fame. This resulted in an outpouring of horror from me, of course, because the book and movie are both imo unadulterated awful, for many and varied reasons (and not the same reasons for each medium).

I posted the links to the
followingwebsites for more info as to the problems and said, as a brief note as to some of the issues, that the relationship between Bella and Edward is abusive and awful, certainly not perfect, the writing of the novels is deficient (there is no character development, just for one flaw, let alone no plot and "thesaurus rape", a crime that should never go unpunished) and that it's horrifically anti-feminist in theme.

A stranger wrote back and asked me, in particular, what made the books "anti-feminist", as I had claimed. I responded by saying that the links set it out much better than I could in limited space, but that one problem theme was that the lead character identifies herself only as Edward's girlfriend, and does not value herself in any other way. She also attempts suicide and falls into incredibly dangerous depression when deprived of Edward; she almost literally can't survive without him. The books paint Bella's view as correct and at no time criticises it; in fact, the books state that her relationship with Edward is "perfect", thereby portraying Bella's self-view as wonderful!

Not to mention the werewolf issue: Leah is instantly rendered infertile when she becomes a werewolf and she's the only powerful female character in the books. The fact that female werewolves are infertile makes it necessary for a practice the author has called "imprinting" (explanation to follow) because the werewolf species apparently must go on so a male werewolf will "imprint" on a female human, thereby instantly creating a connection between the two individuals which means that no-one else exists for them and they will eventually have sex and continue the species. Imprinting is instigated wholly by male werewolves on female humans, thereby removing the female's choice as to a sexual partner. Further, Leah is stripped of her ability to procreate, while the male werewolves carry on scot free. Message? Female = lesser = anti-feminist.

Don't even get me started on the fact that the imprinting, when it occurs (as it does in the series on two occasions) between an adult male werewolf imprinting on a 3 year old (and younger) female human is
"child grooming", which is illegal and constitutes a type of paedophilia = really and seriously disturbing in a book aimed at teenagers and in which the imprinting process is described as wonderful, perfect, calming, etc, because it removes "doubt" and "uncertainty". Uh-huh... 'coz choices bad 'umkay.

Now, all of this aside, if this was a book aimed at adults: FINE. I can hate it, I can think it's shit, but each to their own. But, a teenager reading this book without guidance? These messages being sent unfiltered to the brain? I have a problem with that.

(And I'm not doubting intelligence, nor am I calling for censorship... I am calling for discussion and a questioning mind. It is a proven fact that a young brain is eminently malleable and the ideologies and values of a child/teenager are shaped by just these themes. Take care with our youth, world, take care.)

So I raise these concerns in this online interaction. The response?

Stranger said: "Um... [my name]? It's just a book. It's fiction. Who cares if it's anti-whatever in a cynic's eyes... It's a good read! If anyone read it and wanted to live their life that way, they'd be hard pressed to find a vampire boyfriend and a warewolf bestie, so I think they'd survive..."

This response really worries me. Are there more people out there who cannot see that words and themes and ideas have an effect on people?

As a friend so eloquently said: I wanna punch her in the face with reality.

Yes, I know this comic is apt...

... but I believe that a culture where we don't argue, critique or at least discuss matters, particularly in books, is a culture doomed.

Side issue: the movie doesn't include most of the issues set out above, so as a movie it doesn't ring alarm bells like the series does. Additionally, Twilight itself isn't too bad theme-wise (though see the second link above for a hilarious rundown of its literary deficiencies), but the rest of the series is where it gets all kinds of fucked up.

For the record, though, I think it's THE WORST MOVIE I'VE EVER SEEN as a result of terrible scriptwriting, shocking direction, hideous make-up inconsistencies and a bloody awful score.  Just sayin'.

And yes, I do believe that this is the correct ending:

Current Location: Work
Current Mood: frustratedfrustrated
Current Music: Placebo - Drag

I'm not sure how far the news has travelled, but Australia has been hit with its worst bushfires in history, the toll now at (UPDATED 11/02/09) 173 dead and expected to rise as the areas affected are searched and especially since the fires are still burning.  Fires have covered a great deal of southern Australia, affecting states Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales.  Some of the fires were deliberately lit.  Here is the latest BBC article about it: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/7877178.stm (UPDATED 10/02/09) Here is an Australian newspaper summary, including further evidence of arson and a prediction of a death toll higher than 200: http://www.news.com.au/couriermail/story/0,23739,25031822-952,00.html (UPDATED 11/02/09) Death toll is now expected to reach 300.  26 fires are still blazing uncontrollably in Victoria.  Aside from the death toll, the property damage has left families without homes and they are currently living in tents provided by the State and Federal governments. 

At the same time, southern Australia has experienced a heatwave that has had numerous people hospitalised for heatstroke (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/7860776.stm) and in far north Queensland, at the very top of Australia, flash flooding has taken at least (UPDATED 11/02/09) 7 lives, including a 5 year old boy who was taken by a crocodile after following his dog into the rising floodwaters (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/7868854.stm).  The floods have also destroyed property and homes but in a wonderful show of spirit, some of the flood sufferers have donated their disaster payment from the government to the Red Cross appeal for the bushfire victims.

Not to mention the ongoing drought which has affected farmers in central Australia for at least the last 5 years, destroying livelihood.

Native animals and pets are also hard hit.  There have been quite adorable pictures circulating the net of the usually reclusive (and aggressive towards humans) koalas and other native wildlife drinking from cups handed to them by humans or from swimming pools or from hoses, but the reality is dire: the poor animals are dying of thirst and that thirst has overcome their natural fear of humans.  Really saddening.

The need for immediate support, counselling, blood and financial assistance is enormous.  In these harsh economic times, I know it's hard for people to help, but if you can, Australians and their wildlife and pets need your help! 


** BLOOD (for Australian readers)
(UPDATED 11/02/09) Please note that while there is enough blood held at the moment you need to book for an appointment to give blood over the coming weeks so that burns' victims can get ongoing treatment.  Blood can only be stored for approximately 5 days, so more donations will be necessary in the coming months.

** MONEY (Worldwide)

Australian Red Cross "Victoria Bushfire Appeal"
The Australian Red Cross has now set up a Victorian Bushfire Appeal. Donations can be made via

At this stage, the Red Cross is not accepting donations of goods and is unsure if they will set up an operation to do so. The above link has information as to why they are not accepting goods donations at this time, as well as detailed information as to how the money you donate will be applied.

Salvation Army donations - appeals for both Bushfire victims AND Flood victims
Donations to the Salvation Army can be made via

Wildlife Victoria
Wildlife Victoria has set up an appeal and donations and information can be found

Wildlife Rescuers
Wildlife Rescuers has a 'heatstress' appeal underway. They are requesting cash donations, fresh fruit and veg and cages/cardboard boxes for the animals to sleep in.

National Australia Bank donations
Donations can be made the the NAB by calling 132 622 (Australian number) or you can transfer your donation to the NAB via the internet.

Account Name: Victoria Bushfire Relief Fund
BSB: 082001
Account: 860046797

For those wishing to check the details independently, click on the banner across the top of

Bendigo Bank donations
To make a donation to the Bendigo Bank Appeal, go to their website
http://shop.bendigobank.com.au/public/foundation/ or contact 1300 366 666.

AUSTRALIANS ONLY: shop on a specified day!

Wait until Friday, 13 February to shop at Coles as it is donating all its supermarkets' profits to the Victorian Bushfire Relief for that day.
Click here to view coles media release

Woolworths will be donating all its supermarkets' profits from the trading day of Friday, 20 February to support farmers and communities suffering the effects of the ongoing drought.
Click here to view Woolworths media release

Please help if you can but if not, spread the word.


Current Location: Brisbane, Australia
Current Mood: distresseddistressed