This is the interesting and exciting blog of Christop - one of the 84 000-or-so people of Ballarat.

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

Where ya from?
I've been back in class two and a half days now.
On Monday, duing the break in the middle of my Indigenous Culture lecture, the lecturer - an older, Anglo man, born and bred in Ballarat - came up to me and said, 'Where ya from?'
I didn't really understand what he was asking me. Was he asking where I grew up, where I live, what course or school I'm from or what my ethnic background was? Or was he the fifth person this year to mistake me for an international student?
I just stared at him for a few seconds, trying to work this out, then said, 'Wha'd'ya mean?'
'Where ya from?' he said again.
'Do you mean, what part of the state am I from?' I asked.
'Dandenong,' I said. 'But I've been living in Ballarat the last two years.'

Also, last night I got a letter asking for fees. This letter reminded me that I enrolled in an extra class this semester, to catch up with everyone. Which is lucky, because Gothic Genre & Contested Space is this afternoon.

Sunday, February 22, 2004

Creswick: days 2 & 3 + frogging
Creswick: day 2
On Friday afternoon I got a missed call from Andrew. Andrew moved up to Ballarat last weekend, to do the Physical Education course at the uni. Our parents have been friends since my parents moved to Dandenong, before we were born. Since I was out of phone credit I decided to walk to Andrew's place, since it's not too far.
When I got there it turned out he hadn't called me on purpose anyway. His phone had gone off in his pocket. But his housemates were in Melbourne until Saturday, and he had nothing to do. We decided to go out to Creswick again, for a swim at Lake St George.
When we were almost at Lake St George we went past another lake, and Andrew reckoned we should check that one out. But it was all muddy and gross, as I'd expected, so we got back in the car and went to Lake St George.
Lake St George is the best when it's hot, like it was on Friday.

Creswick: day 3
Saturday morning Haydn called me up to see if I wanted to go out to Creswick again to get some more footage of Log Cabin Lodge. This time we got more people: 8. Maggie's family came up to see Maggie and brought pizzas. I invented extreme pizza boxing.

Last night we went frogging. Six of us squeezed into Sam from Environmental Science's car and drove out to Balck Dog Creek, in Napoleons, and tried to find some frogs. We could hear the frogs. But we couldn't find them.

Friday, February 20, 2004

Philip Yancey on Gandhi, sex, the evangelical church and Martin Luther King.

Scientist recommends prayers before bedtime
A neuro-physiologist who specialises in sleeping disorders says that praying before you go to bed can prevent nightmares.

Thursday, February 19, 2004

Today I went out with Hadyn and Hananja to Creswick, to get soem footage for a promo film for Students for Christ O'camp. Lots of fun. Might have to go out again tomorrow, if Hadyn's not happy with what we got today.

Tuesday night went out to Extremity with the Gillies St mob. It was Boat Race Night, which means it was a kind of beer-drinking relay, but I was more interested in the free pizza, having not eaten all day.
After the boat races were finished a few of us walked on to Irish Murphy's where one of the first year students got so drunk she was almost passing out and one of the academic mentors got really sick. Cam, one of the residential advisers, asked me to go back up to Extremity and get Amarli to drive them back here. Amarli came and picked them up and we took them back - stopping a couple of times so they could vomit.
But they had a great night of course...

Tuesday, February 17, 2004

This week is O'week at the uni - the week before classes start when there's heaps of free stuff and a lot of people get wasted.
At Students for Christ we usually do some stuff in O'week so that people know we're there, and can find out what we're about, et cetera.
On Monday we had a survey outside the hairdressers. We do it outside the hairdressers because all the first-years have to go past it on their tour. Last year most of their guides wouldn't let them stop to fill out our survey, but this year they were heaps more co-operative, and as far as I know only one tour guide wouldn't let her group do the survey.
Today was Clubs & Societies Day, so we had a table set up with photos from SFC functions, activities and missions, as well as info on our meeting and other happenings. This year we were given a less popular location, but I think that we got about as much interest, probably because we didn't have to compete with as many other groups for attention. Also, we got a lot more interest from international students this year. At least two people from Gillies St want to join.
Late this afternoon Hadyn and I made a database of the people who want more info on SFC (from the surveys) and made plans with Justin (the SFC campus-worker for Ballarat) to do a promo video for the state-wide O'camp, which'll be in week 4.
Tonight is the City Residence Society's night out, at Extremity. It's free, so I might go.

I don't normally write poetry anymore. This just popped into my head shortly after I woke up this morning:

Big T
I like that sound

Monday, February 16, 2004

Apparently my geekishness is only 10.25641%, which means I have geekish tendencies, but am less of a geek than Tab, who is actually classified as a geek. She wanted me to do this test in an attempt to prove that I am a geek. Which I am, of course, not.

so how is it in Sydney?
Sydney kid:
Sydney kid:
oh there was a riot
what over?
Sydney kid:
Sydney kid:
like 40 got injured
Sydney kid:
there was rocks, moltovies
what was the riot about
Sydney kid:
Sydney kid:

and what sort of suburb is Redfern, BTW?
Chris Morphew:
uh... it's an inner-city suburb of sydney
Chris Morphew:
high indigenous population
Chris Morphew:
relatively speaking
was the guy who got chased indigenous?
Chris Morphew:
a kid i talk to in Sydney was telling me there was a riot, and he didn't know what it was about..
Chris Morphew:
yeah... i haven't really heard much about it... haven't been seeing much tv news
i try not to watch tv news
Chris Morphew:
so i dunno.. but my church is in that general area, so i guess i'll find out sooner or later
ok, cool
the police shot a guy near *my* church last week
Chris Morphew:
Michael Moore told me that tv news is evil. I get all my news from carrier pigeons now.
i just don't watch TV very much
Chris Morphew:
well, i don't watch fox news anyway
we don't have cable
Chris Morphew says:
you're not missing much
no competition
Chris Morphew:
unless you like paternity tests and reruns of gilligan's island...
oh *dear*
i'd almost rather watch The Block
and who needs cable when Fresh Prince is back on?

In early 2000 my dad was working in Darwin and Dili for two months, making sure the soldiers and UN people weren't bringing any pests into Australia. One night the police shot an indigenous man on the beach near my dad's hotel. No questions were asked. It wan't even in the paper. Apparently that sort of thing happens there all the time, and people just accept it.
I'm glad Sydney's different.

Sunday, February 15, 2004

Gillies Street
About half an hour ago I moved into Gillies Street. That's right, it turned out they did have enough space after all. It's nice. Lots of people. Almost everyone's gone to the Buninyong Pool for the afternoon though. I got here just before they left, and couldn't be stuffed going.

Friday, February 13, 2004

Got a message from Bonnie last night:

    Christop... How
    are you mate!? A
    guy i went 2
    school with
    moved 2 ballarat
    the other week.
    Wondering if
    there's anything
    i could tell him 2
    go 2? Hes
Wasn't sure what she meant, so I gave her a call.
This was the first time I'd ever spoken to someone I know from the Internet, so it was kind of strange. When someone's talking to me online, or I'm reading something they've written, I imagine how I think they would say it, in a voice that I think would suit them. I sort of expected Bonnie to sound like the other South Australians I've known, who've either sounded English or German. But it turned out she sounded more 'Aussie' than most of the Victorians I know.
Turned out this guy had been living in Ballarat for a few weeks, trying to find a job, but he hadn't found one yet, and he hadn't made any friends (whereas I'd presumed he'd just gotten here, and would be going to the uni). I said I'd try pay him a visit today, after I'd finshed tutoring Ray, and Bonnie said she'd send me a message once she'd found his number and address.
About an hour later I received:
    My mistake, he
    actually lives in
    bendigo! Silly
    me! Sorry! Nice
    talking to you
    tho! ü have a
    good one! ü

Another new house
Yesterday I moved house again. I'm staying at Trav's new house in Sebastopol until Sunday, when I move to Victoria Street.
I'll be staying at Victoria Street until there's enough room at Gillies Street for me to move in. The reason there's no room at Gillies Street is that every year Accomodation Services accept more people than they really can, because so many first-year students drop out in the first few weeks. The thing is, this year they've accepted 100 more than they can fit, and are having to actually rent out extra accomodation.

'Full time' study
Just checked the timetable for this semester. All my classes are on Monday and Tuesday, which is good, because it leaves me with most of five days free.
On Monday I have my Picture & Word lecture from 11:30-12:30, Indigenous Culture lecture from 12:30-2:30, Cybermedia lecture from 2:30-4:30 and Cybermedia tutorial from 4:30-6:00. So 6 hours 30 minutes staight.
Tuesday is a bit more light-on. Picture & Word tutorial from 10:30-12:00 and Indigenous Culture tutorial from 2:30-4:00.

A serial killer is suspected of using rat poison to kill three chimpanzees, three tapirs, three camels and an elephant in the São Paulo Zoo.

Wednesday, February 11, 2004

Dispute ends in attacker's death
Yesterday a guy got killed in Wendouree, the suburb where my church is. Apparently he threatened the police with a knife and a tomahawk, and when capsicum spray didn't work they had to shoot him.

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

I speak English very well. I learn it from a book.
I have gotten a new job. I am an English tutor.
Ray is tudying in Australia so he can improve his English. Last night he came over and asked if I would tutor him for four hours each week.

Sunday, February 08, 2004

Tomorrow I have to open a presentation on despair in the 20th Century, and answers to the problem, with some statistics. Here's what I found out:

    In some industrial countries, the rate of clinical depression has been doubling every ten years. Suicide has become the most common cause of death in North American young adults, and according to the World Health Organisation, one person commits suicide every 40 seconds. By the end of this tute, around 135 people will have committed suicide.

    Males are four times more likely to suicide than females are, but females are more likely to attempt unsuccessfully.

    It is estimated that 16% of Americans experience depression severe enough to seek treatment and that 13.3% of Americans have suffer from an anxiety disorder.

    Westerners are stressed out by demanding daily commitments, social isolation, the apparent pointlessness of life and unresolved anxiety.

    Between 1970 and 1995, the rate of completed suicides in Australian young men doubled. What’s even more shocking is that the rate of male suicides in regional areas increased by 50% between 1986 and 1992. In 1995, 2366 Australian suicided. In 1995, 5.1% of Victorian Secondary School students surveyed claimed to have deliberately harmed themselves.

Tonight Ray invited me and Trav over to his unit (he's moved into his permenant unit now) for dinner. He cooked us some fried vegetable, rice, lamb chops and pork ribs cooked in rice wine - all great. Trav didn't eat any of the vegetables though, because he only eats potatoes.
After dinner, Ray came with us to Ballarat City Church. He'd asked if he could come to church with us, because he had some contact with Christians back in China, and a guy from International Christian University had been teaching him English using the Bible, when he was living in Melbourne. After the service he talked to the pastors a bit.

Saturday, February 07, 2004

Battle Blog
I'm starting a new blog, called Battle Blog. It'll be a group blog where all the bloggers can edit each others posts. If you'd like to be part of Battle Blog, please e-mail me at, or leave a comment.
Blogging will start once there are three other bloggers.

Thursday, February 05, 2004

Turkey Beach
This afternoon, Trav, Ray, Juha and I went down to Turkey (Tourquay) Beach. We didn't stay in the water very long though because Ray reckoned it was to cold at 34°C.*
Had tea in Geelong, then drove home. Arrived in Ballarat at about 10pm.

*It's supposed to be 39°C tomorrow, and I don't expect it'll get any hotter in Ballarat this summer.

The Unit 17 International Pool Championship was held on Tuesday night. Juha - the Finnish Pool Champion of Unit 17 - won. Ray is the Chinese Pool Champion of Unit 17. I am the Australian Pool Champion of Unit 17 because I beat Trav, and he was the only other Australian. But Trav reckons he is the Australian Champion, because he is a better player.

Shenanigi/News Scents/for³in¹/Stuff Wars turns 1
Yesterday was a year since I started my blog. Since I started this blog it has changed it's name three times, changed its address once and had its original posts deleted.
There's some bloggers I'd like to thank:

    Adam, Chris, Nick and Darren, for inspiring me to blog,
    Yasminé and Owl, for their encouragment,
    Jabir and Bushra, for making me think,
    Prime Minister John Howard, for answering my letters,
    Tab, for starting a blog and making me feel like I'd set something off,
    Abez and Tim, for keeping this blog going while I was on mission,
    and everyone who's read this blog, commented in it or linked to it.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

Paranoid android
Jim Henson's Creature Shop has released photos of a prototype costume for Marvin the paranoid android, to be used in the much-anticipated Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy film.
The film will star Martin Freeman as Arthur Dent, Mos Def as Ford Prefect, Zooey Deschanel as Trillian and Bill Nighy as Slartibartfast.

Harold Lickett
In the courtyard between the Library and the T Building there is a big oak tree. Yesterday, beneath the oak tree, Elizabeth W found Harold Lickett.
Harold Lickett is a baby oak tree. Liz dug Harold out of the ground, filled some Glad Wrap from her lunch with dirt, and planted Harold inside. She was worried he might dry out before the day ended, so we went into the Caf to find some water.
We managed to find a water cooler outside the Campus Shop, but the water was pretty cold, and Liz thought it might freeze poor Harold's roots. So we put some of the water into one of the plastic cups, and microwaved it in the Campus Shop microwave. Liz poured the water into Harold's dirt. But it leaked through the Glad Wrap. So Harold ended up in the cup.
Liz was growing an oak tree when she lived in New Zealand, and it got pretty tall, but she had to leave it there when she came to Australia.
My parents have a big oak tree in their back yard. Mum hates it because of all the leaves it drops. But there's not enough space to cut it down.

My brother Doomie's year 12 camp at University of Ballarat starts tomorrow.
And I found out today that I got a place at the Gillies St Residence. Which is just as well, since I'm supposed to move in in about ten days.

Barcode art
This site contains a heap of artwork made from barcodes. As well as barcode portraits there is a barcode clock and a personal barcode generator.

Monday, February 02, 2004

Paul Colman Trio disbanding
The Deeper (the Baptist Union of Victoria's youth department) 2004 launch was held at the Scienceworks Museum on Saturday. Paul Colman played, and announced that because of the strain on their families while living in the US, the Paul Colman Trio will be disbanding after their Melbourne show, later this month.