The one thing you don’t want to do is mis-time your toilet breaks.

A couple of drinks and a chat with a fellow geek from New Zealand in the pub last night. We get up to leave.

Ahh, that was a nice drink. Nothing much going on just at the moment, says the bladder.

We part outside Flinders Street Station, he’s bound for the tram stop, I head for platform 6.

Well you could go now, but it’s not urgent, and the toilets here are usually a bit bleuch.

Ah! The train’s waiting there. Express, as well. Find a seat, dig out my copy of MX. … Train leaves, pulls into Spencer Street … Flagstaff …

Hey, you know, that was a lot of beer. That last one was rather big. You know how alcohol goes through the system. Might be nice to find a toilet.

… Melbourne Central… … Parliament …

There’s toilets at all these stations. Sure you don’t want to stop off and catch the next train? Oh, but you’d have to wait. And the next one wouldn’t be an express. Not far to home.

… Richmond … South Yarra …

You know you need to go. But it’s express now to Malvern. Then only a couple more stops to home. Maybe you can wait.

… express, express, express, Malvern …

Okay, you officially really need to go. I know, I know, there’s no toilet here. Hang on until Caulfield, then decide. Or just go home. Only… what.. two more stops? 4 minutes. Plus the walk home, about 8 minutes. You can last 12.

… Caulfield …

Yes, you’re busting, but you might as well hang on. Just one more stop then the walk.

We pull into Carnegie. I stand up and walk to the door and realise just how badly out of hand this has got.

Oh man, relief is needed fast. Maybe if it’s too much you can go behind a tree in the park next to the station.

Well that would hardly be very dignified, would it. Besides, the blindingly bright lights of the station ensure there is nowhere nearby where one’s actions can be obscured.

I walk along the street, attempting to exude confidence. But inside my bladder is crying; screaming.

You need to go! You need to go! You should have gone before! You should have gone before!

I reach my street. Not much further now.

Full full full full full full full full.

This is bad. I get out my keys. Have the front door key at the ready. Ah, there’s my car, parked on the street today, outside my house. (Long story).

Ah, at last. Almost there. At last.

Wait! It’s not my car. It’s someone else’s car, someone else’s house. Mine’s 30 metres further on.


Get to my place, ignore the mailbox, fumble with the keys.

Hurry. Hurry.

Fumble, fumble. Open front door, go in, dump bag in hallway, walk briskly to the toilet.

Aaaaaaaaaahhhhhhh. Relief…..

Definitely not

The real estate agent called… finally the vendor made a decision on the house. The decision is… no decision. She won’t sell for the amount I offered, and she wants a heap more money. Fat chance. I mean, it’s a nice place, but I think what I offered is possibly stretching what it’s worth. If it was worth more, others would be offering more.

Ah well, so at least I know now. So with just over a month until I have to move, I’m officially back on the rental bandwagon. I’m not too shattered. Over the past week or two I’d wondered if it really was the right place for me. Fairly small garden… body corporate stuff… could mean hassles later. I’ll save more dosh and try again in 6-12 months, and probably find something much better that’s really worth getting into astronomical debt for.

And now for something completely different.

A few days ago I was having a conversation with someone about how I don’t talk about my bodily functions in my diary. Well, except vomiting of course. Vomit gets good coverage (ugh).

Well I’m about to. Not vomit – talk about bodily functions. So feel free to skip the rest of this if you’re my mother, or if you think it’ll make you queasy.

I write this with some trepidation as I feel certain that after reading this, you’ll think I’m a bit strange. But then you probably thought that anyway.

My toilet doesn’t work very well. It’s another nail in the coffin for my flat – if I didn’t have to move out next month, I’d be planning to move out this year anyway. While the flush is generally successful, frequently some paper is left behind. This of course is not very pleasant, which is why when I am expecting visitors I will often give it a couple of extra flushes to get all traces of anything thoroughly dispatched down the S-bend. Under normal circumstances however I just try to ignore it, after all, there is a water shortage on, and I’ll be moving out soon.

Yesterday afternoon I went to use the toilet, and being a bloke and not needing to do Number Twos on this occasion, I stood. Down in the toilet bowl was some toilet paper. Not much, but totally sodden, and floating at or near the surface of the water. I started, and decided to aim for the toilet paper. To my surprise, my pee ripped through it, chopping it neatly in half, like some kind of laser beam cutting through the wing of a stranded aeroplane trapped at the bottom of the ocean being rescued byThunderbird 4.

Momentarily I had a sense of awesome power. Until I remembered it was just sodden toilet paper I was chopping through.

There, told you you’d think I’m a bit strange.

Have a bucket handy?

  • Hey Daniel
  • Yeah?
  • You need to go to the toilet. Now.
  • Do I? Okay. Ooh. That doesn’t feel right. I wonder if I’m okay.
  • Hey Daniel
  • Yeah?
  • Toilet again.
  • So soon?
  • And do you have a bucket handy?
  • Yeah I think so.
  • Grab it.
  • Okay. What for… oohhhh… oohh dear… bleaaarrrrgghhh…. Well now. That’s a spectacular colour.
  • It is, isn’t it. Now might be a good time for you to go to bed.
  • Yes, I think I will.

And so it began, last night, a joyful night of gastroenteritis. It’s gone around some of the rest of my family, but by golly it was my turn. Thankfully not as painful or traumatic as last time I was sick (hmm, exactly a month ago, too), but not exactly pleasant.

So today I’ve spent the day at home, resting, primarily from the lack of sleep last night. It’s amazing how slowly the day can go when you’re spending it doing next to nothing. I keep looking at the clock, being amazed it’s only X o’clock, instead of X+2 o’clock.


I’m holding, in my other hand(*), a box of twine. What strange stuff, twine. It must come from a twine factory. I wonder how many people work there. And what they say at parties when people ask them what they do. "Oh well… I make twine. Yeah, you know how when you get the packet, how one end of the twine ball is sticking out of the hole in the top. I do that. I find the end and stick it out of the hole."

I also notice on the box it says "open flap for instructions." Well, thank God for that. I tell you what, I’d be lost without instructions on how to use my twine. They’d have to open a 24 hour Twine Line, for distressed users of twine. "Oh, you’ve got to help me, I got my twine home, and I just can’t think what I’m going to do with it. I’ve tried everything – cooking with it, programming the VCR with it, even sex. You’ve got to help me, please." But no, there are instructions inside boxes of twine. It probably just says "tie stuff".

(*) the one I’m not typing with.