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Outback Etiquette

Or Does Anyone Know if I Should Order Dinner for My Children from the Seat of an Outback Toilet?

I’m sitting here watching a series on Netflix called Very British Problems.  The episode in question is discussing how to deal with other human beings; such as what is and isn’t acceptable and how discomfiting any interaction with other members of the human race is.  Thankfully, I was born in Australia.  And thanks to my adoption, all of this social awkwardness has not been passed down to me through my British genes.  However, thanks to a sterling anxiety disorder, I  do harbor enough of this Very British Problem that anything outside of the social norm is a veritable nightmare for me.

But seriously, these droll, British comedians would have a stroke trying to navigate the minefield of Outback social… niceties. Outback Queensland is a unique place. 

Struggling to zip up the stubbie cooler around the bottle, she turned to me “we should all be this tight” and wandered away.  Leaving me to stand there, gobsmacked and wondering if a 60-odd year old woman had just made a vagina joke to me.

The answer is a resounding yes.  Yes, she did.

Continue reading Outback Etiquette

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There’s always a bright side. Even if that bright side is that you only lost a finger.

Lessons come from the most unlikely places.  Like from children and applesauce. And crack.  Sometimes from manky, infected toes and bubblewrap, but that’s another story altogether.  Today’s lesson is courtesy of applesauce and crack and I don’t really know how I feel about it all.

Ash, eating applesauce straight from the jar. “It’s Apples Mum.  It must be healthy.”
Me, trying good parenting. “Yeah.  But how much sugar is in it?”
“Only 12%.”
“12% of that jar was sugar. That’s not healthy.”
“Look on the bright side.  It isn’t 50%.”
“That’s like saying to someone who just lost a finger.  ‘Look on the bright side, it wasn’t half an arm.’ It isn’t helpful.  They still lost a finger.”
“Well I’d rather lose a finger than an arm.  I don’t think you’re getting it Mum. There’s always a bright side.”

Ten minutes later…

Me, trying some more parenting “…I’m glad you asked. The inserts for the cup holders are on the sink because *someone* <eyeballs Ash> left iceblock wrappers in there and they got sticky.”
“Look on the bright side, Mum.  At least I’m not a crack addict”.

Today applesauce and crack have taught us valuable lessons.  I’m pretty sure the lesson is that if you’re a total smartarse, try not to raise your children to be just like you.

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So here’s the thing.  People keep putting me in charge of stuff and I can’t work out why.  No, really.  Managers are supposed to be fully functioning adults and if we have learned anything on this blog, we know I am not a fully functioning anything.

I used to be Assistant Manager at a refuge for homeless youth.  I’m pretty sure I can’t be allowed to raise other people’s children, this is how my own son’s twisted little mind works:

Me: (writing notes on a client for staff meeting): “hmmm social networks…”
Son: “tumblr, twitter, facebook..”
Me: “No dear, my client’s social networks.”
Son: “Just because they’re homeless doesn’t mean they can’t have a tumblr”
Me: “heheh they usually have a facebook”
Son (horrified at himself) …….. “ahhhahahahahahahahahah….ohhhhhh….”
Me: “Oh god, what?”
Son: “If they have a facebook at least the homeless have one wall”
Me: “…..
….you’re going to hell.  You know that right?”




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Perhaps I am the Prime Minister of Australia. Only Time Will Tell.

I’ve decided I’m a genius.  No reason other than the fact that geniuses… geni-i… people who possess the smarts are often unappreciated in their life time.  And I am unappreciated.  Ergo I must be a genius.  Flawless logic really when you think about it.

Artists are the same.  So I’m probably an artist too.



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She Really Sucks at Teamwork

Conversation with my daughter bourne out of possible swine flu and too much cough syrup

“Bekah, if I die, I want you to avenge my death by becoming a world famous scientist and waging war on all the bacteria and viruses in the world.” “Okay, Mummy” <I walk off content in the knowledge my daughter loves me>

<pops head back into the room as an afterthought> “Also, if you accidentally turn yourself into the Hulk, I’ll understand if you have more pressing things to deal with than avenging me.”

“She Hulk.  I’d be She Hulk”

“Huh…. That’s the problem you had with that sentence….”

“Well, I’d have to be She Hulk, wouldn’t I?…”  Quite frankly I tuned out somewhere in the middle of talk of marvel characters and avenging but I tuned back in when it sounded like she was coming to an end and I had finished thinking about things I find WAY more interesting.  BECAUSE I’M A GOOD MOTHER.

…”and then I could be The Avengers all by myself”.

“You suck at team work”


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I am a tree. Or a poor imitation of a circus clown. Hard to tell which. Help me please.


Dear Sir/Madam/possible inheritor of $5,000,000 from a Ugandan Prince

Do you ever have those days where your creativity feels stifled in your windowless, soulless, office?  Do you feel like you need light to grow and thrive?  Like a tree?  I am a tree trapped in a box with no soul.

Sometimes you just need your email signature to express who you truly are inside, rather than the corporate shill you are paid to be. I’m a little bored and a little trapped in this office.  Help me please.

Kind regards

Jo Sargeant

Chief Supreme Clinic Manager and Demi God/Princess

Executive Wordsmith and Super Mum
…also good with glue and glitter

Clinic Manager/Future Trophy Wife of Chad Kroeger

Clinic Manager/Princess

Clinic Manager/Aspiring Wizard

Clinic Manager/Potential Sweepstakes Prize Winner

Apocalypse Prevention Team Manager

Administrator Extraordinaire and Very Poor Juggler

Expert procrastinator/Very good at colouring in

Clinic Manager/Social Media Assistant/Located far too far from a decent winery

Clinic Manager/ Chief Wordsmith and Purveyor of Bullshit



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It is confusing living in my head

Or My Train of Thought Has Derailed

My train of thought whilst standing in the shower:

My life has become less funny and more grown up.  I think it is attitude really.  I need to start viewing my life as a series of stories to be told again. Like the time that my washing machine broke and instead of rolling my eyes and treating it like a hindrance when my g-strings got spread out all over the car park I just laughed about it and wrote about it to a friend.  Do Americans have laundries in their apartments?  You never see them in the laundry on the telly and they are always downstairs in the laundry room or going to the laundromat.  And what’s with people having a washing machine in the kitchen?  That to me is just asking for trouble, I’d be constantly worried that I was going to wash the chicken and put the delicates in to bake at 180˚C.  I could go a roast beef with yorkeshire puddings and gravy.  Mmmm a savoury and a sweet at once.  I think I’ll watch Doctor Who today.


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Do not ship puppies interstate, but if you do make sure you put a sandwich in the box

The other day I got a phone call that amused me for the rest of the day.  To be honest, as I sit here telling you about it, I’m still pretty amused at myself.  My job can get a little monotonous and sometimes I’m just looking for small ways to keep myself smiling.

Things to know:

  1. In amongst the myriad of things I am responsible for in my job, warehouse logistics is one of them. Boxes come in.  I ship them out.  Pretty straight forward process.
  2. I’m quite sure no one actually reads half the information I have to enter in to the system when I send things out. It seems pointless.
  3. I spend far too much time on the phone talking and emailing our assistant accountant to discuss things that I’m sure HR would tell us were inappropriate for work conversations. We make each other laugh.  A lot. Who wants in on our Zombie Apocalypse team?

Phone rings…

“Hey.  This is Jo.”

“So… this parcel you sent out.  The one marked ‘not puppies’.  It sounds suspiciously like it might be puppies.  Are you posting puppies?  You shouldn’t post puppies.  Were there puppies in that box?”

…takes a second to think about what on earth Lee* is talking about.  Remembers that when entering the information in to the very boring TNT form to ship out very boring supplies to another branch I got bored and wondered if Linda** actually reads the shipping information on the boxes I post her.  She does not.  Turns out that it is Lee’s job to check everything I ship…

Erupts in to laughter.  Mission accomplished.  Much shenanigans planned for the future now I know he has to read every. single. label. that I print.


*Not his real name.  There might be a Lee that works for our company, but it is not that one.

**Also not her real name.  See above.

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It’s a Trap!

Admin’s Log: July 15

It has been 5 weeks since Telstra pulled the copper lines out of the street where I work leaving us with no phone or internet service until we could hook up to the NBN. As it stands we have no phone lines out, calls have been diverted to my mobile so there is no real ‘knock off time’ for me, no network connectivity so emails and intranet are down, cannot network to the printer. Shredder still works but am expecting that to change soon. Slowly going crazy. IT guy attending site to fix the issues. Am not planning to let him leave until all is fixed. Will set a subtle, yet 100% effective trap to ensure his capture.

Seriously, 5 weeks since Telstra took our phone lines down and we’re still struggling to get everything back on track.  Needless to say I was super excited to hear that our IT guy was coming to my office to fix our problems.  And after doing our printing at home after hours, using my phone tethered to my laptop as my work desktop is essentially a giant word processor and using my mobile for a work phone, there was no way on this green earth I was letting him leave until it was all fixed.  But how to ensure he stays here until it was  done? <strokes chin thoughtfully>

I present to you the Acme Trevor Trap:


Complete with kibble and something to drink, all I need to do is put paper down for him to sleep on so he doesn’t make a mess.

What’s that I hear you say?  My trap is cunning and subtle and completely 100% foolproof.  Why thank you, I was pretty impressed with myself, and every client that stepped through the door thought it was brilliant.

The Trevor I was trying to trap?  Walked through the green door RIGHT NEXT TO IT and didn’t see it!  I should have made it larger and more obvious.  Up until now I hadn’t thought that subtlety was my strong point, but *clearly* I was wrong.

His excuse is that he is smarter than the average IT guy (points awarded for the Yogi Bear reference).
I think he is less observant than the av-er-age Bear.

In fairness, I think I’m right.  Because, well, I’m always right for starters.  Also, because – I’m always right.

Next time I’m going to dig a big hole in front of the office entry and cover it with leaves and twigs.  If he didn’t see the trap, there’s no way he will notice that.