What makes you a local?

One night in the last weeks of Chris Bath’s Evening show on ABC Sydney she asked the question “what makes you a local?”.

I lived for a year in Tokyo. And it was interesting to see when you became a local.

Are you a local when you know all about the location? Or does it require other locals to treat you as if you belong?

I think familiarity is what makes you a local. I remember at the begin everyone treated me like a random foreigner. Being white you really stick out.

Over time, interacting with staff in the local stores and eating establishments, I could see people’s attitude towards me changed. The staff were more comfortable dealing with you, and more likely to help when your Japanese wasn’t good enough or you were stuck trying to workout bureaucracy (like paying bills).

By the end of the year I had learnt to navigate public transport, pay my bills at convenience stores and which ATMs worked with foreign banks. I had got used to the different scale of maps, everything is closer together than Sydney. And there were parts of the city I was comfortable dealing with without a map (this is before everyone carried an iPhone to find their way).

So had I become a local? What did the people where I lived think?

I felt more of a local. And while I may not have been a ‘local’, I had at least become their foreigner (to the establishments and places I frequented).

Coming back to Sydney I could see similar patterns to what I observed in Tokyo. With the exception (mostly) of language, familiarity and the way you interact with people is what makes you a local.

You may not know about all the secrets about an area. But how people interact with you makes you more a local. That people will help you if you get stuck, and not just because it is their job, I think that is what makes you a local.

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Cryptoecurrency (definition)

Cryptoecurrency (or Crypt toe currency)\ noun:
A currency used by grave robbers, necromancers, and other denizens of graveyards. Mostly comprised of toes collected from dead bodies.

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I browse recipes vs. Eyebrows recipes

I browse recipes \ phrase:
What you do when trying to decide what to make for dinner. Normally in a cook book or online.

Eyebrows recipes \ noun:
When you are making dinner and your eyebows malt into what you are preparing.

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The Blog with No Posts

It’s lonesome away, while your writing and all
By the screen glow at night, where the cursor does call
But there’s nothing so lonesome so morbid or drear
As a blog with no posts for a whole friggin year

Now the public is anxious for the quote to come
Something witty and warm that won’t make them run
The data’s gone all cranky and the engine’s acting queer
Oh what a terrible blog with not a thing for a year


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Art on traffic light controller. “days one” by Stephen Evens

Art on traffic light controller. "days one" by Stephen Evens #publicart #BondiJunction #2480 #RTAHow does your suburb deal with monotony of every day utility objects and make them more interesting?

Walking around Bondi Junction I found some nice beautification, including art on traffic light controller. These are all titled “days one” by Stephen Evens.

I’m sure are more than these 3 I found around the streets. Another Art on traffic light controller. "days one" by Stephen Evens #publicart #BondiJunction #161 #RTAAnother Art on traffic light controller. "days one" by Stephen Evens #publicart #BondiJunction #1038 #RTA

1, 2, 3

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UFO descents through clouds at sunset to snatch man

A striking image I caught at sunset in Chinatown, Sydney. The man looks over his shoulder, just as the UFO descends to snatch him.

Man looks over his shoulder just as #UFO drops in to abduct him. Nice #clouds & sky over #Chinatown, #Sydney at #sunset too #scifi

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220g @CadburyAU blocks are on special at @Woolworths, except they are only 200g blocks

Cadbury Dairy Milk 200g blocks, marked as 220g block on the sale tag

Cadbury Dairy Milk 200g blocks, marked as 220g block on the sale tag

It was great to find 220g blocks of Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate on special at Woolworths yesterday. Down 20% to only $350, or $1.59 per 100g.

Which looks like a good deal, until you realise they are all 200g blocks. So really $1.75 per 100g.

So who’s job is it to make sure that shelf labelling is correct? Is this a misleading advertising issue? A unit pricing issue? Or something else?

There were at least 12 mislabeled sale tags for chocolate on the shelves. And the incorrect tags have been up since 22 April. (dates are at the botton of the tags)

Of cource, the sale is probably to distract from Cadbury shrinking 220g chocolate blocks.

Incorrect Cadbury Rocky Road 220g block sale tag Incorrect Cadbury Peppermint 220g block sale tag Incorrect Cadbury Roast Almond 220g block sale tag Incorrect Cadbury Crunchie 210g block sale tag Incorrect Cadbury Dream 220g block sale tag Incorrect Cadbury Top Deck 220g block sale tag Incorrect Cadbury Snack 220g block sale tag Incorrect Cadbury Caramello 220g block sale tag Incorrect Cadbury Turkish Delight 220g block sale tag Incorrect Cadbury Black Forest 220g block sale tag Cadbury Dairy Milk Picnic 200g blocks, marked as 210g block on the sale tag

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Schemes Cobra couldn’t achieve, but the banks are trying

io9 put together a list of The 14 Dumbest Schemes That Cobra Ever Came Up With On G.I. Joe. Some really wacky ideas, what do you expect from a kids cartoon? But not all of them are totally insane. Some have merit, just bad implementation.

Take for instance plan 5:

5) Destroying All Currency, “Money to Burn”
Cobra creates a device that destroys all the world’s currency. This completely absurd, impossible device is somehow not the stupidest part of the plan; the stupidest part is that Cobra Commander thinks that people will trade their non-cash valuables, likely jewelry, to him for a new currency which is basically a new gold coin with his face on it. Ignoring the fact that even if people did somehow agree Cobra Bucks would be the new world currency, the loss of all that cash would completely destroy the economy and probably civilization, and Cobra would basically rule the world of Mad Max.

This plot is not that insane. And many banks would like to do it.

Most of the world’s currency exists in electronic form. With only part of it being physical banknotes and coins. All the long term deposits in banks are just stored in computers.

As I see it, destroying all the (physical) money would have 2 advantages:

  1. It costs money to make the physical currency. Physical notes and coins wear out. And then money needs to spent again to replace them. So you are saving money by keeping it all electronic.
  2. Tracking. If all your transactions are done electronically, via Credit/Debit cards/etc, it is much easier for the bank (and government) to track where you spend all your money. You can then create nice profiles of people’s spending/travel habits.

So, Cobra wasn’t too insane. They just need to work on scheme implementation.

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Why you don’t space people in a closed ecosystem #The100

Having just watched the first episode of The 100, I felt the need to write about one flaw of the episode. Why are they spacing people they don’t like? It’s a waste of resources.

The 100 - how big is your airlock?

The 100 – how big is your airlock?

I can see the rational for removing people. They have a small society, limited space to contain it and feel the need to have a drastic deterrent for crime.

But it is just the wrong way to do things, and here is my reasoning:

  1. They are all part of a small closed ecosystem (a space station). They are all worried about dwindling resources, especially as the people in charge know there is a problem. Why eject resources into space?
  2. The person is biomass, just kill them and use their body as fertiliser.
  3. If you really need to space them, strip them first. Reuse their clothes and anything in their pockets.
  4. If you have to space them, why do it from a large air lock? Isn’t that a lot of air to waste, all ejected into space?
  5. If you eject that much air into space, won’t it affect the orbit of the space station? And require a correction later on?

It is nice to see more Sci-Fi on TV. I just wish they thought a bit more about the science.

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Surry Hills lanes in the rain (photo collection)

Back lanes of Surry Hills wet after the rain.

Surry Hills lanes in the rain 1Surry Hills lanes in the rain 2Surry Hills lanes in the rain 3Surry Hills lanes in the rain 4: man with umbrellaSurry Hills lanes in the rain 5: this is draining

1, 2, 3, 4, 5

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