Easter weekend activity

We have had a weekend which involved a lot of pottering about.

On Friday we had some friends over and with these friends, we usually take turns in buying take-out curry to have after a hard days work. However, given it was Good Friday and we didn't have to work so we got to make some curries, namely, Lamb Vindaloo, Lamb Korma and Butter Chicken and a not so successful Tarte Tartin (apples too well cooked).

Our eating meat for dinner on Good Friday is no surprise. What was a surprise, is that our friends told us during the day they had set out on a mission to find two things,to buy on Good Friday, meat and alcohol for an impromtu barbecue - "Mission Impossible"!
I have spent a good portion of my weekend trying how to figure out how to post a picture so that it is within my posts rather than posting a photograph from Blogger. Many can do it, but I am afraid that I am pretty slow when it comes to matters technical, but I am determined. My first attempt was to post a picture of a portion of myself to my profile it only took me about 48 hours.

While it was a success, I couldn't stand to see myself eyeballing me everytime I opened the page it was quite disconcerting, as I am sure it was for anyone who stumbled across my blog at that stage as is evidenced here and is the very last time I will be posting this again I promise!:
Anyway I have decided to keep with a more picturesque and calming theme of Monet and will periodically update with a new Monet (see right *ahh...much better!*)

I was having problems though still trying to post an image within a post, I have finally worked it out and you know where I found the help, not within the technical help sections of Blogger and Flickr but in the forums of Fickr. A person like me who was being driven insane by the directions on Blogger which sent you to Flickr to open an account and then left you there. I am glad to find that once again when I am having an issue, its NOT JUST ME!

So this has been my test post and I thank anyone who has had to bear with me as I try and sort it out tonight and publish and republish and edit and have posted as many images within the one post as possible.

Seeing as I think a lot of people have something better to do on a Sunday night then check in here I think I am relatively safe. Though I may as well fill in the details of the rest of my weekend to date while I am here.

Elliot and I spent a lot of time playing battleships. He declares I am a mind- reader though I have passed that crown to P when he sunk one of my ships in his first go this morning. We are also trying to teach Elliot what a "hollow victory" is, that is, it's not worth winning if you have taken a peek to see where your opponents ships were located during the game and you go on to end up winning.

Elliot and I baked cookies, and I tried quite unsuccessfully to limit both his and Gabriella's chocolate intake.
I am happy to say I finally got Gabriella to wear the bunny ears so my $2.50 investment was well worth it:
and for the first time ever after noticing that she was being quiet and away in another room, I discovered her not being naughty (like climbing onto the dining table to eat the eggs with the foil still on them), but actually doing this:
This afternoon we went to P's brother R for dinner and I managed to get Gabriella to wear this hat, she agreed to wearing my beads and standing in one place for the photograph,
And finally this is what happens if you tell your husband that we need to buy a new kettle, because the old one has been shorting out a fuse every time it automatically cuts out upon reaching it's boiling point and he decides to find it on Ebay
Yes, it is a Sunbeam King Kettle an electric barbecue which I am told " Is just perfect for the deck" and saves him going downstairs to crank up our bigger barbecue. We will see how it goes tomorrow when we roast a chicken in it.

Monday - I am trying to get P and the kids over to the bowls club for I have a hankering for a couple of ends and a G&T.

P.S I updated my links and have added two ladies one of whom I have been reading for some time, Sarni of Infernality a Melbourne law student who is on the brink of launching herself into the legal fray, and a new discovery, Katie of What Katie Did an Australian student living in Boston who is able to indulge in all manner of cultural activities being close to New York as well.

I was also saddened to discover, I am no longer able to link through to the excellent photographic world of Carolinkus once at Beelzebublog. I hope your happy with where ever your at Link. But if you change your mind and return please let me know.


Happy Easter everyone and have a safe one too.


Perfect Autumn morning - 7.30am across from my bus stop.


I'm it.

This little game was passed onto me by Elissa and I have to say I marvel at her ability to do this in a spare five minutes, it has taken me over an hour.

I just got off the phone to my sister in my endeavours to track down the name of the artist and song title to question number 3. I have a shocking memory for song titles, lyrics and artists - couldn't get any worse than that really I mean that's what makes up music after all.

I am the sort of person who really wants to just launch into song with gusto but it's a bit embarassing because I will get the chorus TOTALLY wrong, so I kind of mumble sing hoping no one can tell how dumb I am when it comes to singing really!

1. Total number of music files on your computer.

570 items and 36 hours of music.

2. The last CD you bought was...?
We are very naughty and haven’t bought music for a while, as we have been copying it or downloading it. The last CD copied was The Dears –‘ no cities left’

3. What is the last song you listened to before reading this message?

Saturday night at Women in Voice the very last song they played was Joni Mitchell for their third and final encore and was absolutely fantastic, it was "Big Yellow Taxi." I was singing this all the way out of the theatre up until we had trouble finding a cab to get home.

Don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you’ve got

Till it’s gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot
Mmmmmm, bop, bop bop, bop, bop

4. Name five songs you often listen to or which mean a lot to you.

This is difficult but I would have to say the songs that really mean a lot were songs that I have picked for some significant events in my life so be prepared for a bit of mush. Although I have heard worse in my student days when I worked in a restaurant that was a bit of a wedding reception factory at 8 wedding reception a weekend sometimes. "You are the wind beneath my wind" wears thin after the one hundredth time and has a gag factor of 10 out of 10! (Apologies to anyone who may have used that song – but you only heard it once!)

"I’ve got you under my skin" – sang by a fabulous singer in the band we had at our wedding, the song we chose to dance. And it was piped into the examination rooms when I lay getting my first ultrasound in which I saw Elliot! Love the Vince Jones version.

"Someone to watch over you" – Nat King Cole (I will always think of my mother when I listen to him, and the my sign off name "Lushlife" is because of my liking of his music. My sister sang a version of this song at Elliot’s Naming Day

"Arms of the Angel" by Sarah MacLachlan – sang by my sister at Gabriella’s Naming Day

The moody melancholic songs of my yesteryear, post University, pre-P while having way too much time on my hands, and we were all on the brink of discovering the world outside university and what our next commitments would be, career, travel, and partners:

I wallowed in:

"Circle" by Edie Brickel –
I quit -- I give up
Nothing's good enough for anybody else
It seems
And being alone is the best way to be

When I'm by myself it's the best way to be
When I'm all alone it's the best way to be
When I'm by myself nobody else can say goodbye

*Could I have played anything MORE depressing?

And played liberally after coming out of a funk:

"I can see clearly now the rain has gone" – by Hothouse Flowers

"Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind
It's going to be a bright, bright sunshiny day
I think I can make it now the pain has gone
And all of the bad feelings have disappeared
Here is the rainbow I've been praying for
It's gonna be a bright, bright sunshiny day "

Boy I am so obvious - how cheesy it seems now!

5. Which three people are you going to pass this stick on to, and why?

OLS – who would have absolutely no trouble completing this questionnaire and I wouldn’t be surprised if she has already filled it out!

Anyresemblance – because I am curious to see whether her girls are having an influence on her music or vice versa?

Jellyfish – hopefully if she gets a chance because although she is currently very, very busy I bet she would be able to answer this in a flash otherwise. I know her taste is diverse and sometimes a touch lame, it is never boring and always interesting in a very cool way!


Women in Voice XIV

Let's try again. Blogger is being a complete bastard lately, if I wasn't already slack enough it isn't exactly encouraging to find that my last post was so @#@#@# up that I had to delete it out of existence, then my post after that refused to be posted and it too has vanished though without any help from me.

So, back to Women in Voice now I have to find all the @#*@*@# links again too, I am so tempted to swear on this post, and break one of my self-imposed rules!

(Oops, just re-read this and realised I have broken my non-swearing rules that is, if "bastard" is still counted as a swear word. Which reminds me of how at the moment Elliot is at that stage where he will hear a swear word and say all shocked and wide-eyed "Mummy, he said a bad swear word" Wanting to know what it is I have been encouraging him to tell me what he has heard and expecting the worst, I have so far been pleasantly surprised when he whispers behind his hand "he said; "bloody hell!"

I don't have anything against swearing let me tell you I am certainly no saint and if anyone wants to swear on their blog that's their perogative and I make no judgement unless of course they are good at making up new swear words and that I marvel at!. Anyway this no swearing rule on my posts thing is just that one of MY boundaries for MY blog.

Indeed in my latest discussions with Elliot about swearing I have began talking about when swearing might be appropriate, one of the examples I gave is if he were hurt during sport and he couldn't help swearing because he was in great pain and shock I would overlook it. I also gave him an example of when it would probably be inappropriate to swear, like nearly all the time, such as when in the company of his gentle and sweet Great Grandmother unless of course he was seriously injured and in the company of his Great-Grandmother I think I am being a bit too lawyerish about this but I can't help myself ;)

Back to WIV, I went and saw their show last night - it was brilliant and I am a WIV veteran having gone to the show for the last 5 years in a row. The show itself is a vocal showcase for women singers, every year the line-up is different thought some singers appear year after year or some miss a year here or there and return.

I attend each year with the women in my family, which doesn't mean it's a women only event, there were plenty of men there last night and one in particular with a huge head sat directly in front of me the huge lump of a man that he was. I spent the entire show with my head virtually on my sister-in-law's shoulder, in fact I am not surprised my neck isn't more sore from all the twisting I had to do.

We were examining the demographic of the audience and there was a representative from every group, pre-teens, teens, couples, older guests, in fact P's grandmother has been going for the past few years and she is 90! Unfortunately P's grandmother missed it this year as physically it is much harder on her to go out in the evening.

Last night's show was one of the most enjoyable in many years. I lost entirely that routine feeling I was starting to get after attending the show year after year. I agree with this review except for the comments about Jenny Morris, I think that her doing the hits that have made her career entirely appropriate and she didn't have to do them any other way than the way she has always done them, I mean it's not like she is on American or Australian Idol and she is trying to "own the song" or "put her own stamp on it"they are *bloody well her songs anyway!

(*another technical swear word makes it into my post)

For the first time, WIV is going to Sydney from 30 March for 16 performances so I strongly encourage anyone there to make the time to catch the show and I promise you won't be disappointed. I am so proud that I am able to recommend WIV as having become a newish regular over the years I feel I am part of it's rich history.

If only I were in Sydney I would try and round up a few of my favourite women bloggers to go!


Noticing Autumn

Lately I have had to awake early to go to work, this means by 6.30am I must be at my bus stop. For the first time ever, I had to eat my porridge with maple syrup and pecans there the other day. As is wont to happen when I am busily preparing myself to leave for work on time, I suddenly need to do something I haven't factored into my preparations, like clean up after a child or an animal mess, this time it was the cat.

Sylvester (the cat I am cat-sitting) has been recovering from an allergy so that meant keeping him confined in a room with an Elizabethean collar for a few days. It was my task to deal with cat litter, and that morning there was some other material (vomit) which meant I then ran out of time to eat the too hot porridge I had prepared, so I threw it into a bowl with a lid and took off with my backpack and a spoon.

My actual intentions were to eat my breakfast once I made it to work as I would have about 20minutes spare before I had to take off again. However, once at the bus stop I checked my watch and found that I was 3 minutes late for the bus. Two minutes later, I figured I had missed the bus completely so I decided that by the time the next one came in 25 minutes I would have time to eat my now warm porridge while I looked over the park opposite the bus stop.

The grounds of the park were streaked a glistening green and brown, which was made more obvious due to it having been freshly mown along with the smattering of rain that night. Alone, I ate my porridge in peace away from the frenzy that P was in the midst of now at home, having to prepare everyone to vacate the house in one hit, getting them dressed, teeth brushed, lunches prepared and packed, school notes followed up, snacks, nappies, drinking vessles and changes of clothes for Gabriella and no doubt something will happen that he won't account for.

I enjoyed my few quiet minutes taking in the early morning vista, couples and singles walking their dogs, ladies enjoying a group walk. The morning was crisp and with the brilliant blue of the sky above the native trees of the parklands it could only mean that everyone there would be enjoying the fresh start to their day.

The enforced waiting for my bus gave me time to recall how for the last 2 weeks, I have been waking around 4 am and noticing a chill in the air and instead of the cooler air forcing me to stay and snuggle with P and further into my bed it has had the opposite effect and I have been propelled from the warmth of our bed and into the cool dark morning.

Once up, I tiptoe into the children's room and gently graze their arms with my hand to gauge how cool they may now be having slept largely inactive for the past 8 hours or so. My touch enables me to determine the right bedding to cover them with, a blanket, a doona or a sheet? Lately it has been their heavier bedding. It will be much easier for me once I am able to put them to bed in warmer clothing knowing that they won't become too hot during the evening or that the coolness finally warrants keeping a heater on low for the evening. But for now the climate dictates I hedge my bets, cooler clothing after their baths, and my addition of warming bedding come the early morning.

Despite this regular interruption to my sleep, I so love this time of year, it smacks of Spring except for the fact that we won't have any blooming plants- my virtual Spring. Though even more enjoyable because the suffocating humidity and virulent heat of Summer is not the distant memory it is by the time actual Spring rolls around in September.

It is time when physical activity can occur almost any time of the day instead of the very early and/or the very late. More warmed vegetables for dinner and less salads, soon we will be enjoying the first of many soups, rissottos and slowed cooked meals.

Autumn, I will have to take some photographs soon though I know it will be difficult to capture how a subtle change in weather has made me feel so good to be alive.


Damn work

interfering with my otherwise happy life again. I am, with much reluctance acting as THE BOSS this week. To make matters worse the heirarchy don't acknowledge I am acting as the boss and have requested another team member to respond to an urgent task.

I don't disagree with their doing that because the other team member began this project, working with the masters upstairs, and eventually had to relinquish his role to my friend when she was appointed as the boss. If I were in charge upstairs I know who I would ring down and ask for and it wouldn't be ME!

I feel quite uncomfortable being the nominal head of the project this week and want to tell my other team mate I prefer he take on this role formally, he may as well get the extra money if he is going to be treated like the boss. Next time I am asked to do this job I am going to refuse - I don't like being in this position. Particularly when I left at 4.30pm today and left two team members to finish off the urgent task, because I am not expected to do it and I am the so-called Boss!

We are also finishing off a phase of our project, I call the hostile phase we were venture into enemy territory to take a few blows and just smile and say thanks in return. It is extremely draining but at least it is over, for now.

My friend who is my boss is off trekking in Tasmania and asked me to fill in for her. I really didn't want to, but as usual you feel bad for refusing the 'honour' of being the boss. I really don't give a rats, about being the boss, I have a child under two, if I want to see her grow up I need a job that requires less obligation expected of me. I am also not working from home on Fridays for a while in this next phase of our project. For some reason my work colleages thought my being away from my family for the entire five days gives me a free license to stay after work for drinks! My free time is even more limited, because when I am not working I have to relieve my babysitters from burnout and attempt to satisfy my own issues of 'mother guilt' to see my baby for more than 4 hours in one day five days a week.

Sorry about the boring rant.

Eddie made a return visit and there were no tears this time although Elliot was close to tears when he forgot to write something that happened in the diary. I managed to get him to put it in eventually - so problem solved.


More food related activity this

weekend on Not Just Desserts.

I did learn one thing however , it is much harder than it looks to play hang-man after drinking a bottle of wine. That was my lesson for Friday evening. I made an effort to turn up for the Divisional drinks and stayed for my own shocking effort at hang-man. The longer the phrase and if the word or words involved repeating letters, the worse the effort. No one fared particularly well. Not a good look for people who are supposedly wordsmiths.

I am thinking that perhaps, spelling could become a random road-side test to replace the breathalyser. "Madam, could you please spell " alcohol" "a......c ........o.....l h ol - ACOLHOL! The easier the word you get wrong the higher it is you are deemed to be.

He is a very good sport.

I am pretty happy with the way these two interact.......so far. I hope it doesn't/never deteriorates into full scale sibling rivalry. I should expect it but what with the five year age gap and the fact they will have needs and desires being of the opposing sex surely I can only hope they will get along like this for ever.


I have a mission.

This was my post that was lost in the blogosphere during the last 24 hours it has finally reappeared for a good old edit.

I thought I had better dispel any myth that I might be considered a high-flying lawyer as was suggested by Kitschenette from the Red Kitchen on the comments on my food blog. I would give up being a lawyer in an instant for a caterer's life so long as I were the boss of course and had total creative and financial control.

I have had defining career moments that have seen me land where I am today. The first was my deciding to be a solicitor instead of a barrister. The next were in London where initially I spent several months in hospitality due to the Gulf War - yes it WAS that long ago and I couldn't find a job in law because the economy almost stopped during the uncertain times.

When the offer finally came we were also planning a trip down the Nile. The job I eventually took was in the London Borough of Hackney - my first impressions were bad, very bad of the area that I was to make spend the next 9 months for 5 days a week. I recall walking down the High Street to my interview and seeing more economically and socially disadvantaged people I had ever seen in my life thus far. Many seemed to have drug-related and mental problems as well.

I told the interviewer we were making plans to go to Egypt so they better make a decision quickly. I thought, quite incorrectly as it would transpire ,that it would put them off hiring me, instead by the time I had returned to the more gentrified area of Maida Vale they had called to offer me the job. I decided to take the job because I had already been in London several months and I needed some legal experience before I returned to Australia.

The job itself was local government prosecution and it was a very poor local council. I recall one day locking the doors of our office to prevent the Sheriff's from removing our delapidated furniture for the failure of the local council for paying a debt!

I also had to endure an acrimonious relationship with our clients and the courts. The office I was working for had earned a bad reputation. My boss though sweet, was thoroughly incompetant and even worse had a stutter, not a good look in court. I tried my best to put some procedures in place and obtain some respect from my clients for my professional opinions.

After 6 months of being there, we decided to go on tour of the U.K. and Europe with P's parents who decided to come over, we never did make it to Egypt in the end.I thought it was timely for me to consider a new legal position and resigned from the council and went on the trip.

After we returned I went back to my agency and applied for some positions separately. We had now been in London about 12 months, and I finally got an interview and an offer from a big firm in the south of London (Enbankment) they had a sister office here in Brisbane as well.

My job would be assisting with the defence of a pharmaceutical company involving the use of failed IUDs (inter uterine devices)- I thought it might be particularly horrible given at that time failed IUDs could cause some horrible side effects. But I thought I need some credibility after my time at the council and this might give it to me.

At the same time P's sister sent us an invitation to her wedding, and the agency called me up offering me my old job back at the council. My choices, stay and take on the IUD job which could see me with a big firm back in Brisbane upon my eventual return or return to the Borough save some money and then return to Australia with P whereupon we would plan for our next working holiday , Canada. I followed my heart, because the IUD job was dragging out as to when I could actually start, I decided to return to the council job and return to Australia for the wedding in 3 months time.

I did think about starting the job with the big firm but I didn't think it was fair to commit knowing I would be leaving and perhaps not return. It was a year since P and I had been together we were very in love, it was a lot of whether to follow my heart or my head.

If I had decided to use career head, I would have stayed and probably have given up P in the process. I don't regret it for one minute, it was simply a cross road. I have to admit I have never worked for the baddies, so it would have been quite a shift in my perspective to not work work for prosecution. I don't have a bias against defence I just decided very early in my career I preferred to prosecute everyone who have the benefit of being presumed innocent than to defend and deal with whole but what if they really did it, kind of thoughts.

There have been other decisions since there about returning to Australia, going to Canada, pursuing a career in hospitality or travel, then finally returning to the law 10 years ago. Having children has since guided most of the decisions I have made in the last 7 years. I think the public service needs people like me too. I don't think everyone should be prosecuted, when we can exercise discretion and people have rights that need to be protected and government shouldn't be omnipotent.

Sometimes I do put on my try-to-do- the- best for my client at the expense of everything else and have assisted in removing certain rights, however at the end of the day I have had to defend those actions and I haven't had trouble doing that.

For now my life of public service suits my home life, one day I may consider a higher flying life and my experience with public administration and the infrastructure law may get me there, but for now preparing Mission Statements, and answering stoopid requests, means that I can come home in time to help with homework, read, cook and simply enjoy the briefest of time in my life, raising a family.

Here is my tasks from the other day, to give you an idea of exactly how bland many of my day to day tasks can be and why it is I may yet consider that career in catering!

A mission statement is like regurgitating a dictionary with lots of bureaucratic words like, "inclusive, cooperative, strategic, responsive, adaptive, efficient, effective and quality".

I found that applying myself to this task was marginally more interesting than my usual task which is to respond to requests for more power when the person asking already has too much power (and does not know how to use it anyway). My initial non-verbal response is usually so incredulous that I then find it difficult to create a narrative to express why it is that I have to say no. Unfortunately by having to respond in writing I feel I am undermining my own beliefs and lending some credibility to the stupid suggestion in the first place.

I can give you one example for a grab for complete power:

"We want the power to detain people who don't or won't supply their name and address."

There are checks and balances needed for the exercise of such a power and we already have those in place, but it was obviously complicating the practical scenario when wanting to detain someone without the suspicion of anything, and that person was stupidly trying to preserve their right not to have to talk if they don't want to, particularly given they are not doing anything suspicious in the first place. I said to a colleague yesterday I know why I won't get very far in my career, my views are not extreme enough and probably too balanced. In my experience it seems in a career only the truly unbalanced rise to the top.

Instead I was lured into competing for a bottle of (no doubt dubious) champagne which will be awarded to the person who comes up with the best mission statement for our Division. Want to hear it so far:

You will have to suspend belief and pretend that I answer to the Prime Minister about ice-cream production.

  • To assist the Prime Minister through the provision of effective ice-cream policy options developed in an inclusive, cooperative and informed environment.
  • To deliver to customers quality strategic policy outcomes about ice-cream production and its role in the food industry.
  • To maintain the strategic position of the Department of Ice-cream as an efficient and effective leader in ice cream production.
  • To create a strategic plan that is highly responsive and adaptive to change.


Oh didn't I mention, she's a twin.

I have a hot tip: Dry cat food daily it seems to have given her a glossier coat ;)

Taken this morning before we sent them on their separate ways.

Elliot's Acrostic Poem

When I picked Elliot up from his grandmother's this afternoon he announced that he is going to become a writer. Boy, was I happy, "That's why I called you 'Elliot'" I told him.

He has started a book and P will be assisting with the illustration. The title is "Max's first game"

In the meantime he wrote this accrosstick (sic) poem. His grandmother while quite well read had suprisingly not heard of this type of poem and this is how she thought the word was spelled.

Policeman lock up bad gis.
Oll of the policeman woke (work) togethor.
Loyers (lawyers) work for policemans.
I like when the badies get into gail.
Coll the police when your in trobol.
Even when someone is hort they help.

Elliot needs to help them qwig (quick), qwig Elliot needs to win and he doze.

I am not sure why he wrote the second sentence but it was on the page so I thought I would add it.

Elliot appears to be a very typical first child, in that he is very conscious of authority and holds policemen in high regard. His two ambitions"

1. To play cricket for Australia; and
2. To be a policeman.

We have spoken about the other children at school in his class and I have found out which ones are more likely to get in trouble and sent to the Principal's office. He is adamant that he would never get sent there for bad behaviour. It seems that he and his friend are regularly separated from sitting together by the most misbehaved boys in the class. I think it is a little unfair that he has to have his seating affected because of another child's behaviour. I am not worried that the naughty child's behaviour will influence him because Elliot has said that he sees nothing desirable in the attention that the naughtier boys attract - thank goodness.

I am hoping that Elliot's attitude will stay much the same the whole way through his years of schooling. I guess so long as there are no major upsets i.e. emotional family life upheaval then he should stay on track - I think......

Do you know a workplace psychopath?

This article was circulated by one of my team members today at work.

My favourite comment is at the end of the article-

"People who think they may be working with a workplace psychopath should
be reminded that there are many types of people with poor social and
managerial skills..."

My Manager also chimed in with "I think we are safe. Most of them are partners of law firms"

The hidden world of psychopaths
By Samantha Baden

THEY are callous, egotistic and destroy their victims, but serial killers and rapists are not the only type of psychopaths. In fact, you could be working with one.

Criminologist John Clarke, a consulting profiler for NSW Police, said most psychopaths were not homicidal maniacs, but worked and lived unchallenged in society. He has written a book about his work as a consultant to corporations who call on him to deal with workers who create problems in their organisations because they exhibit psychopathic traits.

His book, Working with Monsters, identifies the psychological tendencies of the workplace psychopath.Like their violent counterparts they are superficially charming, have a grandiose sense of self-worth, a need for excitement, and are pathological liars.

"They have an absolute lack of remorse, a lack of guilt for what they do," Mr Clarke said.

"It's a parasitic lifestyle, they live off other people, take credit for other people's work, ... have a sense of entitlement, are very narcissistic and often exhibit promiscuous sexual behaviour."

It is not exactly known how psychopaths come to be, but most authorities agree that it is a combination of genes, biology and the environment that produce the psychopathy syndrome, or cluster of behaviours. There are different types of workplace psychopaths, but for some of them the main objective is to get to the top of an organisation for the financial rewards and power it brings, according to Mr Clarke. Their second aim is to revel in the suffering and misery they exert on people.

They can also be corporate fraudsters who steal from their organisation by being brilliant con artists, or they can use their jobs to act out their psychopathic tendencies on people.

"Just incidentally, the workplace psychopath is very nice to talk to. Very, very nice," Mr Clarke said.

"Out of all the killers and rapists and everyone, the workplace psychopath is the most interesting."

This is because they are extremely clever and have very good verbal skills.

But workplace psychopaths have a devastating affect on corporations and co-workers.

"For the people they work with, who they actually victimise, it's absolutely devastating, (and causes) anxiety disorders, depression, heart problems, relationship problems and stress beyond belief," Mr Clarke said.

In the beginning, a corporation may value the psychopath because they attain success at any cost.But they over-promise and cannot deliver and eventually customers get
frustrated and take their business elsewhere.

"It costs the corporation money," he said.

It is estimated that between 1 and 3 per cent of the adult male population and between 0.5 and one per cent of the adult female population are psychopaths.

"It's a small proportion of the population, but the damage they do is out of all proportion to how many there are," Mr Clarke said.

"Everywhere they go they affect people's lives and they will con and manipulate everyone around them."

People who think they may be working with a workplace psychopath should be reminded that there are many types of people with poor social and managerial skills, Mr Clarke said.

"But for those who really think they do have a psychopath, they should really seek professional help."


A kind reminder

from kitschenette and I have finally paid some further attention to my food blog.



I have posted something, I was starting to think I may never post again. i just needed to get one run on the board so I could break the non-writing spell I seem to be under.

I really don't know why I haven't been writing, perhaps I am no longer addicted. I also really find it hard to analyse why I haven't been posted, its not like I am too busy. I think my life is just cruising at the moment which means I have no peaks or valleys so maybe I don't need to express myself about such even times.

I did try to write a post on Friday night and it was incredibly boring, I tried to talk about some of the challenging things I have been working on without talking about the detail so it ended up as a discussion of nothing really. So I have kept it as draft and will delete at a later time.

My final excuse is that 8 days before the end of this month we are reduced from broadband to dial-up speed so posting becomes a slow and boring process.

Movies, Movies and more movies

I actually made it to three out of the five best nominated this year so I was well and truly able to indulge in the shallowness that is the Oscars. Yes, I admit we are sad. P and I like to have an informed guess at who may win so we do some research.

The three we saw were Million Dollar Baby, Sideways and The Aviator. I thought Sideways was the best out of the three of these films. I loved that it was only a character driven narrative, no special effects or glamourous scenes or cliched characters unlike the other two which had a foray into some of these flaws.

However, whenever I have a punt at who will win, ever since the debacle that was the sweep of the awards for the "The Titanic" a few years back, I now nominate winners based on how I think Hollywood might vote.

How did we fare this year, I picked the Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress, Best Director, Adapted Screenplay, Cinematography, Special Effects, Makeup and Costumes. So not too bad really.

Clotheswise my biggest problem was with Rene Zellweger she looked very stiff and uncomfortable in that way-too- tight dress she walked as if someone had put starch in her knickers.

This weekend I would be very happy to catch either or both "The House of Flying Daggers" and "Ray."