Tuesday, July 31, 2007

I fell into a fire pit

Last week I got invited to a house party by Tom, an honours student in my department, and on Saturday night went over to Dutton Park for the festivities. It was a house-warming party thrown by Tom and his roommates, one of whom I had randomly sat next to at a not-so-interesting talk on Cicadas. Turns out many of the people there had been at the Cicada talk too, so all night we were shouting, "CICADAS!" and imitating Cicada calls.

Anyway, the night got longer, one thing led to another, some girls put eye-liner on me, and eventually I fell into the bonfire/firepit. Not really a great story. It kind of hurt.

Sunday, July 29, 2007


This weekend marked the end of The Queensland Music Festival here in Brisbane, and on Friday night I went to Battle City 6, a break dancing competition underneath a highway overpass. I took some video clips with my digital camera - check them out below. It was really the coolest dancing I'd ever seen.

There was only one girl breakdancer (the one wearing orange overalls), and I thought she was very cute. Also cute was the crew made up entirely of pre-teen boys (one of them dances first), who were amazingly good breakdancers. The crew from America ended up winning, beating a local crew from Brisbane. Where was Sway?

Friday, July 27, 2007

I got locked out

So yesterday morning I get out of bed and I am preparing to go to University at 9am for a crash course on R (a statistical software package). As I'm getting dressed, I check my phone and there's a text-message from German roommate Chris, "Hey josh. could you place both yellow and gray bins at the street? i forgot it. cheers" And while I am taking the trash/recycling bins to the street (in my boxers) the door slams behind me and I'm locked out. It's 8:30.

I have three options:
1. Break in
2. Call a locksmith
3. Wait for Chris to come home

There's no way I'm waiting around all day on the porch (in my boxers) for Chris, so I try to break in. The doors are all locked, and all the easily accessible windows have metal bars on them (the houses in the area all have barred windows - I guess because we're in the city). I go around to the backyard and think, "What would Jack Conte do?" My plan is to shimmy up the drain pipe, swing my leg onto the concrete ledge, hoist myself onto the back porch, and hope the door to the kitchen is unlocked (see attached photo). Also, I'm barefoot and in boxer shorts.

So I make it to the top of the drain pipe, when suddenly it detaches and gets pulled out from the concrete wall by about a foot. I panic, and fireman-style slide down the pole to the ground below. Option #2 seems nice right now, and I go next door. The couple are old Greek grandparents who have been living in the house since 1952. I call a locksmith and then have tea with them (in my boxers) for 30 minutes while talking about how the neighborhood used to be. Apparently, in the good old days everyone on the street was either Greek, Italian, or Turkish. Also, "do Americans really buy their children breast implants for birthdays?" I said, "only in Los Angeles," and they nodded knowingly.

The locksmith came, opened the door in 30 seconds, I paid him a rediculous sum of money, biked to UQ, and made the last 15 minutes of the Stat lecture (the only part that mattered). I told Chris we should hide a spare key somewhere from now on, but he was worried about security issues.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

A toothless woman chased me

I bought a bike, which is great. Now, instead of taking the bus to the University, I can just bike across the river (it's 15 minutes door to door). But last night, as I was biking across the queen st. bridge, a toothless woman started chasing me. She was too young to be toothless from old age - this was a scary, young toothless woman. Anyway, she ran next to me for a while laughing like a crazed toothless woman does, and shouting obscenities. She couldn't keep up for long though, and I escaped.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

25 Blakeney St.

First post first post first post!

I arrived in Brisbane last Tuesday morning, bought a cell phone, and began looking for an apartment. I saw three places that afternoon, and they were as follows:

1) "Korean Tenement" - A student house run by an old hippie woman, containing a large number of sick korean boys eating chicken soup out of large pots and playing first-person shooters on their computers. Add to that, general squalor and the fact that the room would not be ready for 2 weeks. Solution? I would be staying in old hippie woman's son's bed until korean boy #3 moved out. Also, very far away from things. Too far. Rating: 1/2 star, and that's generous.

2) "German beach house" - As soon as I saw this house, I thought "beautiful, cute, and clean." Living here is a german guy named Chris and a british guy named Ben. They are looking for a third roommate, and the house is really freaking nice. Tall ceilings, wooden floors, open spaces, very well lit, amazing kitchen, and a little second-floor balcony overlooking a park. The guys seem really nice and laid back and clean, and the stove looks good. 4 gas burners! Rating: 4 stars

3) "Greek love nest" - opposite a greek orthodox church, here lives Gemma and her boyfriend Tim. However Tim is moving to Canberra because he got a sweet ass job, leaving Gemma behind, so she needs a new roommate. The room is big with high ceilings, has a nice big futon, and both Gemma and Tim are really really nice. But in general, the house is much less beautiful than the German beach house, and Gemma is hot. So...not really an option.


I moved into the German beach house on Thursday, and it's great. Interesting note: Since telling hippie woman I wouldn't be moving into the asian death-trap she has shown up at my new house unannouced to "see where I'm living," invited herself in, and taken a self-guided tour. Following that, she has called me three (3) times to make sure I don't want to change my mind, and "do I know any other boys who are looking for places to rent."