one better than the preppers; or thinking outside the food store

steampunk 2

We were discussing what his character would do in a post-apololyptic world, when Colleague said that when everyone was rushing to ransack supermarkets for food, he would ransack a pharmacy and take all the meal replacement supplements and protein bars.

When I thought about it, I realised the brilliance of his thinking.

Could you carry a month’s worth of baked beans in your backpack? Probably not, but you could carry 90 drink sachets, or 90 protein bars in a backpack. While the preppers are anchored to their static food hoard, Backpack To Go Colleague would have the freedom to flee if necessary.

Of course, it does depend on a water supply, or at least some type of liquid for the sachet, but unless all the water is evaporated, or you are living in the desert, water is obtainable. There are plenty of small camping purification systems that could part of the backpack survival kit.

Team Beans or Team sachets, which way would you go?

steampunk 1

What Will Life Be Like In 100 Years?



A few homes in the early 1960s had this "glass garage" so you could view your large automobile from your deck or patio.

A few homes in the early 1960s had this “glass garage” so you could view your large automobile from your deck or patio.

Better, I hope.

Do you think every generation hopes that? Does anyone ever think the present is perfect?

I hope we do find the cure for cancer. That everyone gets to live a happy, healthy, productive life until they are 100, when we just die in our sleep one night.

Peace? Not sure it is in the human DNA not to need to hate someone, or need to dominate someone or something. We don’t seem to learn from our mistakes, or to leave others alone, so I am not confident there will be world peace.

Families? What a  “family” will be is difficult to imagine. I guess mush along the same lines. I suspect we might go back to more multigenerational families all living together. Finances might instigate this one, but I think we need the help of all generations to raise our young, we need our herd, and so the desire to live far from our family may decrease. Technology allowing us to work from distant places might facilitate this as well.

Libraries and Librarians. Bit tired of the media telling me that libraries and librarians are facing distinction. Like all things and professions, we will evolve. As long as there is information we will need someone to assist us with it. More information = more need of support. We aren’t born knowing how to search or use information, so I see a place for us.

Books. The physical shape of the book technology, be it hardcover, or ebook or audio, doesn’t matter, in my opinion. What matters is that people READ, and use their imaginations. I would like to think hard copy will still be available, as we use different skills to read from the page as to reading online which is more skimming. Books came about due to a major shift in technology, so technology is not the enemy, a lack of reading is the enemy.

Education. I hope it doesn’t look like it does now. Old model. I suspect kids will link in from home more. Perhaps drop into community centres where teachers and Learning Labs will be available. Maybe even 24/7. More doing, discovering, setting own learning goals. Teachers won’t need to be subject experts, but provide social and emotional support as children learn.


Do you think it would be worth being here in 100 years?

Flamingo Files – drive by style

car drive 1

Thoughts during a long drive home :

Why do so many old ladies wear huge glasses that cover the entire top half of their face? Is it so that they have a better chance of finding their spectacles if they mislay them?


If a shelf talker claims a book is “unputdownable” it really means the bookshop staff have either not read it at all, or can’t think of anything to say about the book. I know, I used to write them.


Why do people ask “are you eating your lunch?” when they find you sitting at your desk eating your lunch?

And then, why do they still ask you to do something?


Colleague, He Who Never Ceases Talking, keeps walking into my office to watch the new school block being built adjacent to the library, as my window has a perfect view of the construction site. By 11am this morning he was in severe danger of winding up under a digger. How many weeks until holidays?


Why do they think that people who work in libraries do nothing all day but drink coffee and read books? I drink tea.

Why does the car that holds everyone up in the 100kph zone always have to be the one that speeds up in the 60kph zones?

Why do students believe everything a teacher says? For example a student was having problems logging onto his laptop and asked me to help. I told him to retry his password to as expected it worked. “Wow” he said. “Don’t you know everything when works when a teacher stands behind you?” “Really?” he asked with a look of wonder on his year 8 face. “No!” I confessed. “Oh…” the sound of disappointment in his voice was matched by expression. Sometimes it is like kicking a puppy.

Why is it that as soon as the water gets switched off everyone needs to go the the toilet?


The deceit of our lives


More than once recently my daughter has voiced her concern about how much, and how often, the young mothers of her acquaintance lie about their babies, or their lives. Perhaps lie is not quite the word, maybe pretend or self-delude are more appropriate descriptions of what she feels is taking place.

Their babies all sleep through the night, never cry. Mothers are all coping wonderfully, and life is just perfect. It is only when Daughter opens up and declares that they have sleep issues, or some other life hiccup that the truth tumbles out. Or, the mother that is obviously not coping, but refusing to ask for help, or even discuss, disappears from the group as her world closes down.

The same thing happened when our children were small. Everyone had a child that graduated with top marks, they were all perfect sleepers, no behaviour issues; on and on the list of the many attributes of the wonder kid went on.

It isn’t just about our children that we deceive though is it? No one has credit card debt, they all “own” those latest model cars that they replace every two years. No one ever applies for a job, they are all head hunted and offered three times the salary normally attached to that profession. Romance abounds in the marriage, date night is fantastic, never a night of falling asleep on the couch just glad to have time to sit in the same place for awhile. The sex, oh my, the sex is unbelievable! Unbelievable all right, especially when their visiting 8 year old tells you that they still climb into Mum and Dad’s bed every night!

No one buys take away, we all bake our own bread, grind our own spices. I spin my own cotton and weave our linens from organic cotton grown on the eastern side of the Himalayan Mountains by a small group of celibate Tibetan monks.  Of course, I can only do this between 3 and 4 am on a Thursday, because the other nights I work as a telephone counsellor for men who had their Teddy Bears taken from them at the age of eleven. The Blogosphere is a great perpetuator of such deceits.

Why do we feel this pressure to present a perfect front? When did it become shameful to admit that life is tough, that our children struggle sometimes, that relationships need work? Why do young couples expect to start life together in a house with everything?

Why do we do this to ourselves, and why do we do it to others? We do judge others don’t we? How many of us have not momentarily delighted in hearing that someone is having work issues, or their husband is cheating on them, or their child has actually spends more time with the school counsellor than in the classroom? It makes us feel even better to appear as though we never have such issues.

But we do, everyone does; at sometime and somehow real life hits bumps. It is reality that most of us are a “have not” rather than a “have” in some area. Maybe we would all feel a lot less stressed if we were just a little more honest with others, and maybe with ourselves as well?