Transportational shenanigans

Melbourne is a wonderful city with an extensive public transport network and traffic infrastructure.

Which means there are plenty of opportunities for things to go hilariously wrong. (“Hilarious” in the sense of there being no serious injuries, we’re not complete monsters.) Here’s a round-up of recent events:

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Things I have learned since breaking my foot

Six weeks ago yesterday, I broke my foot. Suffice to say, it was a learning experience, and the main lesson was, breaking your foot is terrible, don’t do it.

Here are some other things I’ve learned.

(Note: post contains X-rays of feet — I don’t know if anyone else out there has lifelong Issues with foot bones, but we thought we should give a heads-up just in case.)

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new residents on the prison island of sodor

Good news! Steph was worried today’s post would require her dwelling on the completely disgusting ridiculousness of cutting federal funding to state schools, but keeping federal funding to private schools because they’ll definitely be discriminated against and get less money??! ? IDK, I’m hoping I’m completely misunderstanding every article I read about it.

ANYWAY, we’re not talking about that today because Steph will start yelling at work and is already really stressed. Instead: MULTICULTURAL THOMAS THE TANK ENGINE.

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The VLine Conspiracy (an actual thing, probably)

VLine, Victoria’s regional rail network, is currently running trains. Hooray! Those trains are super all over the place, though, so travel is free until the end of the month, to make up for the disaster that is our regional rail network right now. So we’re going to talk about a) why this disaster is happening, and b) trains in general. HOORAY.

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do it yourself bike lady business

3rdgear logoYou can purchase the first issue of intersectional feminist zine 3rd Gear! Edited by BFF of No Award Danni, and featuring a contribution from Steph! And also an excellent assortment of advice, philosophy, and practicality. Buy 3rd Gear online, or locally from Sticky Institute.

You can submit to Issue #2 of 3rd Gear, which will have a super fancy launch at The Festival of the Photocopier; and to Tofu and Trangias, a vego bicycle touring zine, which will be available also at the Festival of the Photocopier.

In other bike news, I made a denim pouch for aforementioned BFF of No Award Danni. This denim pouch was made out of a pair of Danni’s old jeans (being a cyclist, she goes through jeans very quickly). It’s perfect for cycling in a dress, going to festivals without a bag, and generally looking cool. I’m so chuffed with how this pouch turned out, and it was really simple. Liz is insisting I tell you how to do it, and so:

A little jeans pouch how todenimpouch

You will need:

  • A pair of jeans that you or someone near to you has ruined
  • 2 metres of trim
  • pair of scissors
  • needle and thread
  • bling (I will be adding some penguin and shark patches to this pouch)

What to do:

Pick a butt panel. This will form the foundation of the pouch. Cut out the approximate size and shape of the pouch panel, as well as up and along the waistband. Keep the waistband intact, as this is how the pouch attaches (via the button, like a usual pair of jeans). Cut as close to the double seam as you can, as this will minimise your need for hemming, and minimise the fraying. Carefully cut between the top of the zip and the waistband.

From the discarded bits, cut out whole pockets – that is, not the hip pockets, but coin and other butt pocket. Sew these onto the pouch panel. You can choose between cutting off the pockets, or cutting out the pockets (ie, including the internal denim). For strength, I included the entire pocket.

Trim the entire business. I chose hot pink, because hot bike ladies deserve hot pink highlights.

TIPS FOR TRIMMING: Trimming is pretty easy, it’s just the addition of stuff to your hems and borders. You can trim with a variety of techniques and materials, but for this I simply wanted to make the edges neat so I used extra wide bias tape and a running stitch through the thickness of the denim. Trimming has the advantage of acting as a form of hemming, meaning I didn’t have to hem any of the denim I had cut, particularly around the curve of the pouch (ie the butt panel). Lace and ruffles would also work excellently as trim on this pouch. You can skip the trimming if it doesn’t take your fancy, if you’d rather go for a plainer pouch – in which case, just make sure to hem the butt panel part.





No Award reviews Melbourne Bike Share

One of my goals in life is to not die of heart disease at 51 like my maternal grandmother.  On the one hand, she had a lot of other health problems. But so do I, and since my rheumatologist put me on Endep for pain management, I can’t even say, “Well, at least I’m not taking any dodgy first-generation anti-depressants!”

So I am trying to get … fit.  Fitter.  And it’s going well, thank you for asking!  Thanks to my Parkiteer cage, I can cycle to the station 3km from my house and leave my bike locked and covered for the day.  And thanks to my Fitbit, I have an incentive to walk 10,000 steps a day, even though that is an arbitrary goal invented by the pedometer industry.  I’m basically a pawn of Big Pedometers, but I’m okay with that.

Getting fit(ter) is especially great in spring, with all these bright, sunny, freezing cold mornings.  I hopped off the train at North Melbourne today, thinking, “It’s a nice day, I’ll walk from here to the office.”

Then my eye fell on the share bikes.

“They’re just like riding an armchair,” Official Potato Moya told me a couple of years ago.  I didn’t know if that was good or bad, but every single bike in that pod had a helmet.

It was a sign.

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