I have 31 movies left to watch as part of #40 on my 101/1001 list. So this afternoon I figured I would get organised. I’ve gone through the list and figured out which movies I’d like to watch and I’m going to try and watch at least a movie a day for the next month so that I can cross that one off my list entirely. I’m surprised by some of the movies that made the IMDB 250 list actually, it seems to me like there is a whole lot of SciFi on there! I’m also (pleasantly) surprised by how many of the movies I hadn’t already seen, especially since I consider myself to be a bit of a movie buff.

Here is the list of movies I’ll be watching over the next month or so:

  1. The Wrestler (2009)
  2. Star Wars (1977)
  3. Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
  4. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
  5. Once Upon a Time in America (1984)
  6. Star Trek (2009)
  7. Blade Runner (1982)
  8. There Will Be Blood (2007)
  9. Annie Hall (1977)
  10. Old Boy (2003)
  11. Strangers on a Train (1951)
  12. Unforgiven (2003)
  13. It Happened One Night (1934)
  14. Rocky (1976)
  15. Harold and Maude (1971)
  16. In the Heat of the Night (1967)
  17. Glory (1989)
  18. Great Expectations (1946)
  19. Manhattan (1979)
  20. The Pianist (2002)
  21. Rosemary’s Baby (1968)
  22. Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966)
  23. A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)
  24. The Conversation (1974)
  25. Letters From Iwo Jima (2006)
  26. Children of Men (2006)
  27. The Terminator (1984)
  28. The Terminator 2: Judgement Day (1991)
  29. Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)
  30. Schindler’s List (1993)
  31. Casablanca (1942)

Luke will be happy, he has been trying to get me to sit down and watch Star Wars with him ever since he discovered, 7 years ago, that I had never seen it, likewise for Terminator. I’m looking forward to watching To Kill a Mockingbird, it’s one of my favourite books so that will be interesting. Anyway! That’s my plan for the next 31 days.. wish me luck!

I haven’t been posting much of late. With my replacement being trained up at work, I don’t really have a lot of free work time to be updating during the day and the last week my Mum was visiting from QLD and I have a friend in town from Amsterdam so most of my ‘home’ time is taken up catching up with the two of them. We also have 9 days left in the country so we are frantically trying to sell the last of our belongings and organise ourselves before next Monday.. eep is all I have to say about that though, because if I start going into it my head could just explode!

In 101/1001 news, I am a little bit closer to completion on a few of my tasks which is nice. I am almost half way through # 69 (Get rid of 101 things that I don’t use or need) It’s been surprisingly easy considering we are moving house. My favourite part of that challenge was giving my boss’ son one of our old guitars. He has been coming into the office after school once or twice a week for the last couple of years so we have spent many an afternoon chatting to each other about the world. He is 14 and absolutely in love with all things musical so when we were talking about getting rid of one our electric guitars he seemed like the perfect choice. The day after I had given the guitar to his Mum to give to him that night I came to work to find this:


He had picked the flowers himself at a reserve where he likes to walk sometimes, and the note was so beautiful that I almost started my Friday morning crying at my desk. He talked about how he couldn’t believe I had even wanted to talk him all those times and how I was so nice and friendly and how lucky he thought was just to know me *sob* he said that he had really mixed feelings about me moving to NZ but that he was really excited for all the great things that were going to happy to me in the future. What a wonderful kid! I wish I could bundle him up and take him with me!

I have managed to cross off two things on my list completely this week:

#90. (Sell/Give away clothes that don’t fit anymore); I have sold a few of them on a forum I frequent (making about $400 which was nice!) and the rest are all packed up ready to be taken to the Salvos next time hubby has a day off work.

#62. (Say yes to more social situations); while technically this is an ongoing challenge which I will keep at for the duration of the challenge (and my life) I feel like I have done well enough at it so far that I can justify crossing it off. Last week was a big week for me, I had dinner planned with someone every single night of the week, so when Friday night came around I was really looking forward to settling in at home with a movie and some chocolate. When my old friend called in the morning asking me to come to a super indie movie opening with him I almost declined, but remembered my list item and said okay. I ended up in a strange suburb in Western Sydney watching a premiere indie thriller movie in a ramshackle theatre with 30 super cool bohemian film students (or ex film students), I ate free popcorn and got to watch the newest short film project from this years Tropfest winner – on her personal mac, in her office, with headphones, while everyone else downstairs played movie soundtrack trivia – I drove the streets of Sydney with my old friend for hours laughing and chatting and talking and ate a midnight dinner with him in the front seat of his car before getting home a little after 1am.


All in all it was a wonderful night, and although I could barely keep my eyes open when I got home, it was well worth it!

And, since it’s something I would normally say no to, and since I had been out for dinner with someone every night last week, I’m counting that as a successful cross off.. I will continue to work at it though, and will report on any other significant progress as it comes up.

Yesterday, while at lunch with my family, there was some contention about the ‘meals outside’ issue. We ate at a beach side restaurant, with walls so open that I thought it could almost count as a meal outside (#99) There were five of us at lunch so I took a vote, two considered the seat to be outside while the other two said it was inside (darn it) I was supposed to be the tie breaker, but I figured I wasn’t a reliable unbiased source so I took the tie to count as a no, which means my tally still sits at 5/101. It was still a great lunch though, and it was a spectacular day in Cronulla yeasterday, almost beautiful enough to make me not want to head to chilly Queenstown next week.. almost.. but not quite!


After family lunch I spent the afternoon with my Mother. She flew back home this morning and it was the last time we’d get a chance to spend time together for quite a while (what with me moving to another country and all). We saw a movie and spent hours in Nulla Nulla cafe downing coffees and chatting away. It was so great, except that spending time with her just makes me miss her even more once she goes home again.

Anyway, that is the update from me. Back to packing and cleaning and organising our lives…

I realised today that i am 38 days closer to day zero and that progress on my list hasn’t been going so well. It hasn’t stalled completely either which is good but things aren’t moving along as nicely as I would like. I suspect it’s because I kind of feel like my whole life is on hold at the moment until the move. Anyway I decided this morning to take a bit of a look at the list and see if there was anything I could do today and I found two things that I could at least get started on. #47 (make a list of 101 things that make me happy) and #41 (Write a list of 101 places you want to see before you die). I started both lists and have managed to complete one. The other will stay safely in my drafts until it’s ready to be unveiled but for now here is:

#47. Make a list of 101 things that make me happy

1. Brunch with my husband in the sunshine
2. Starting a new book by a favourite author
3. Waking up without the alarm/sleeping in
4. Hot chocolate by the fire
5. Being able to see the stars
6. The sound of waves crashing on the beach
7. Photo of the day with my Mum
8. Holidays
9. Laughing until I cry
10. Friends visiting from interstate/overseas
11. Long emails from friends/family
12. Catching up with friends for coffee
13. Sitting on the grass in the sunshine having a sandwich and reading a book
books sunshine
14. Freddie (my lovesac beanbag)
15. Planning my next holiday
16. Putting “pins” in my Places I’ve Been Trip Advisor map
17. Having a clean house
18. Reading through my travel journals
19. Visiting a new country
20. Seeing something in person that I’ve read about
21. When my husband’s wedding ring catching in the sun
22. Home made dumplings
23. Taking photographs of beautiful things
24. Talking to friends on the phone
25. Making lists
26. Having savings in the bank
27. Buying plane tickets
28. Being a vegetarian
29. When my dreadlocks are neat and tidy
30. Writing
31. A new episode of a favourite TV show
32. Hearing my husband laugh
33. Roadtrips
34. Using my imagination
35. Hugging people hello who I haven’t seen in a while
36. Going out for meals with friends
37. Walking around and listening to my ipod
38. Waking up in the middle of the night and realising I still have hours to sleep
39. Dancing around my house when there is noone else around
40. People watching
41. That feeling when I’ve just had a really incredible dream
42. Doing nice things for the people I love
43. Buying books
44. Massages
45. Making it home just before it starts to rain
46. Listening to the sound of rain on the roof as I’m falling asleep
47. Re-watching a favourite movie
48. Planning future adventures
49. Christmas at Mum’s place
50. Having my four besties in the same place at the same time (rare!)
51. Seeing old people holding hands
52. Finding the perfect present for someone I love
53. Making mixed cds for people
54. The smell of fresh babies and puppies
55. Getting money back when I do my tax return
56. Reminiscing about happy times
57. Walking with a friend
58. Watching people who are in love
59. Finding a really great song
60. Freshly cleaned sheets on my bed
61. Finding a restaurant with great vegetarian food
62. Getting mail
63. The smell of really great coffee
64. Crossing things off to do lists
65. When people ask me for travel advice
66. Naps
67. Getting a new high score in Bejewelled Blitz
68. Having a seat free seat next to me when I travel
69. When my husband picks me up from work and opens the door for me from inside the car
70. The smell of wood fires
71. Being snuggled in bed when it’s cold outside
72. Putting clothes on straight out of the dryer
73. Visiting art galleries
74. Feeling inspired
75. Feeling the vibe when everyone is happy and having a good time
76. Having the solution to someones problem/question/need
77. Getting lost in a daydream
78. Making a difference
79. The feeling of anticipation before a good night out or a holiday or a visit from a friend
80. The smell of jasmine at dusk
81. Summertime, when the sun sets really late
82. The smell of vegetables stir fried in sesame oil
83. Feeling connected to the people in my life
84. Being able to inspire people
85. Finding little ways to show friends and family that I love them
86. When people trust me enough to confide in me
87. Saying I love you at the end of a phone call
88. Having a really great word in Scrabble
89. The smell of my knotty boy dreadlock wax
90. Tasting the food on someone elses plate when we go out for dinner
91. Dessert
92. Lying on the floor in the dark and listening to music
93. Making other people laugh
94. When my backpack is right there on the baggage carousel when I get off a plane
95. Getting new stamps in my passport
96. Remembering past adventures
97. Seeing my friends happy
98. Feeling passionate about world issues (although the picture is of tears it really does make me happy)
99. Learning new things
100. Unexpectedly hearing a song I love
101. The fact that I have so many things that make me happy!

The end!
I really enjoyed making this list, in fact I challenge you to do the same if you can. It’s heartwarming and kind of exhilarating to realise that our happiness (well mine, anyway) depends on so little. Not lots of money or extravangant things.. just simple every day stuff.


This week my lovely husband started his new job. He is working nights, which as a chef isn’t all that strange, but he has been working days for the last 3 years so we have pretty much been on the same time zone the whole time we have been in Sydney. The change hasn’t been too bad, except that I have been exceptionally spoilt for the longest time and now suddenly am forced to cook for myself (as a result dinner this week so far has consisted of 2 strawberry freddo frogs and some hot chips). His working nights has meant that I have had lots of time after work for completing all sorts of very important stuff in preparation for our move overseas wasting time and watching stupid movies that are saved on my Foxtel IQ.

Last nights time waster was Miss Congeniality. I don’t really know what I was thinking when I hit play, something along the lines of ‘brainless easy fun’ most likely. I have seen the movie before, many years ago when it was quite new, so I knew what to expect.. standard romcom formula mashed in with a little ‘ugly girl becomes beautiful in the end’ storyline, some funny jokes, a bit of ditz humour.. you know the type. The problem is that somewhere between my last veiwing of Miss Congeniality (around the time I was a country girl moving to the big smoke for the first time followed closely by years of drunken shenanigans and gothed up partying and sharehouse adventures) and last night, I have taken what I like to think of as ‘the red pill’ and become somewhat of a feminist.

As a result, what was once a relaxing zone out type movie is now a jaw clenching/rant about the blatant misogyny type movie. The worst part is that the whole thing is packaged up in the lovely little psuedo feminist/girl power box and tied with a lovely pink ribbon. *puke*

To give you a bit of an idea here is some examples of the dialogue:

1. After one FBI agent brings up the photo of a female FBI agent and – using some doll dressing software – transforms the photo from one of her in her uniform to one of her in a bathing suit: “what did I tell you? Hot, right?” *insert enthusiastic noises as they leer at their collegue*, This is followed by groans of horror and disgust as the rest of the “unhot” female staff members are shown on screen with saggy arms and bellies.

2. The male and female lead are wresting and arguing about whether or not the female lead is going to wear a dress and she asks “where am I gonna put my gun?” he replies “no place I want to know about” and pats her on the butt. A harmless joke you say, except for the intended imagery of this woman being penetrated with a loaded gun.

3. The female lead appears at the welcome breakfast and she meets the other Miss America contenstants for the first time while the male agents sit in their office watching the footage (from her hidden camera) on screen. You hear them say “I love my job!” (who wouldn’t if you get to sit around objectifying women all day long!) “Not a bad view. Not bad at all!” “Look at all the hoochie mama!” “I like that – oh yeah!” *rolls eyes* it gets worse though when our protagonist enters the female dressing room and all the men gather round intently. One man says “You see the legs on that girl? Who’s your daddy?”

4. Then there is the female organiser of the event who talks about the people who are against the ‘pagaent’ she says “You know who I mean. Feminists… Intellectuals… Ugly Women” Because of course the only reason why you would be against it is because you are green with envy.. and of course it’s about more than leering men, you only have to see the reactions of the men supposedly hired to protect these women to see that!

5. The worst part though, and by far the most disturbing for me, wasn’t in the form of the spoken word but was a scene where ‘Frank’ the organiser’s son was testing out his bomb. The bomb – in the form of a tiara – was placed on the head of a naked female mannequin which was standing in a dark carpark. The figure of the naked woman was then blown up and her charred, smoking body – some parts still in flames graced our screens.. now if that isn’t misogynistic imagery what is?!?

The worst part of all of this is that this movie – and all movies in the genre – are aimed at women! This chick flick was made for – and marketed to – women the world over. No one expects that men are going to be queueing up to see this movie.. it really makes you wonder doesn’t it? I mean just what kind of anti-woman sentiment goes on in movies designed for men if this is what we see in a genre targetted at women? And what message are we sending to women when a ‘feel good’ girly movie is filled with so many negative references about body image and beauty? What are we teaching young women when men in a position of trust are shown to be ogling women and making negative remarks about their bodies as a form of comedy? When the female lead is considered ugly until she puts on heels and a dress and only then does the male lead fall in love with her?

There are so many more things I could say about this movie, but to be honest I’m just too freaked out by the fact that I once watched this movie without a second thought. In a way I suppose it shows that I’ve come a long way – in terms of ‘feminist’ enlightenment and that is something to feel good about. But at the same time it is a very stark reminder of just how insidious this stuff really is.