Saturday, 13 December 2014

We're Gonna Find Out Who's Naughty Or Nice!

True story with two equally surprising endings.
(Warning: one unpleasant word will be used)

Yesterday I was in a check-out queue. It was Christmas shopping time and crowded.
I had two items, the lady behind me had an overflowing basket which seemed quite heavy.
I told her to go ahead of me and stood aside.
She said: Thank you. You don't see kindness like that too often now.
I said: Don't mention it. Merry Christmas.
As she unpacked her items she turned to me and said:
You know, earlier today when I was on a bus coming to the shopping centre. I was at the back with a lot of other Christmas shoppers. The bus was just about full and an old man with a cane got on and stood in the middle of the bus near where she was seated.
Two well dressed twenty-something women were on seats right beside him.
As the bus moved, it was clear he was tottering and had to hang on as the bus made him sway. Him steading himself with his cane while holding onto the rail.
One of the women looked up and began to stand to offer him her seat.
The other pushed her back down and said loudly.
"DON'T!  Sit down! Men will think they deserve to be treated nicely by us!

Just after the young woman on the bus said that, a very elderly woman who was seated directly behind her gave her a huge clip over the back of the head and stated "You don't represent ME bi*ch!
The bus cheered.
The really old lady gave up her seat to the man.
The two young women remined seated and engaged with their smartphones.

After hearing this recount I told the woman at the checkout that was an interesting story.
The young girl at the cash register who had also heard the story made an out loud and indignant comment:
"What a horrible old woman. Those poor girls didn't deserve to be treated like that. They have rights you know!"

I walked away leaving my purchases at the counter, shaking my head.

Merry Christmas.

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Hey Steve - A tribute to Steve Morton - the Fifth Beatle

Hey Steve
(sung to The Beatles song – Hey Jude)

Hey Steve, I’m feeling sad
Bought a Filo from Pens and Leather
The rings have gaps the size of Brazil
How do I sta-art to make it better?

Hey Steve, my pen loop broke,
Tried to stretch it with lubrication.
It widened then fell apart in my hands.
Is this a ca-ase for compensation?
So off I went to the store, hey Steve, there’s more
in search of new rings to end this story.
My desp’rate search led me on, to Am-a-zon
And somehow I bought a brown Midori!
Huh huh huh huh huh huh - OMG?

Hey Steve, it’s not the end,

but my stress has gone internal
With the refund I got today in the mail,
I now o-own a bullet journal!

So let it out and let it in, hey Steve, begin
to leave all your Filos for the ‘dark side’.
And don't you know that it's true, hey Steve, you do!
Their leather is made from some cow’s backside!

Ugh ugh ugh ugh ugh ugh, gag gag gag!
Hey Steve, don't be so sad
That the ClipBook is not much better.
Remember though Filofax isn’t bad
the latest Van der Speks are so much

better better better better better better, oh!

Ha ha ha ha ha ha, ha ha ha, hey Steve
Ha ha ha ha ha ha, ha ha ha, hey Steve
Ha ha ha ha ha ha, ha ha ha, hey Steve
Ha ha ha ha ha ha, ha ha ha, hey Steve
Ha ha ha ha ha ha, ha ha ha, hey Steve
Ha ha ha ha ha ha, ha ha ha, hey Steve
(Stevie, Stevie, Stevie, Stevie, Stevie, Stevie, Stevie, Stevie!)
Ha ha ha ha ha ha, ha ha ha, hey Steve
Ha ha ha ha ha ha, ha ha ha, hey Steve

Monday, 24 November 2014


OK, so I had a lot of time on my hands
I was goofing around with an online Anagram maker and, well, here are the results.....

aloof evil fixes
alive fixes fool
evil fax floosie

mentor votes
monster vote
motor events
motto nerves
otter venoms
rotten moves
stove mentor

affixation soul
fixations afoul
oxtail affusion

foxy phial

ably rake
balky ear
bar leaky
bleak ray
brake lay
la bakery
leaky bra
yak blare

nectar jar

almond cheer
anchored elm
calmed heron
charmed lone
cheer almond
cholera mend
chrome laden
chromed lane
chromed lean
clamored hen
clone harmed
cloned harem
coal herdmen
cola herdmen
colander hem
colder he-man
dehorn camel
drench a mole
enamel chord
handler come
harmed clone
held romance
herdmen cola
heron calmed
holden cream
horned camel
loch renamed
lone charmed
macho lender
melon arched
menacer hold
mend cholera
merlon ached
modern leach
mole ranched
nacho melder
nomad lecher
ochred leman
ohm calender
ranched mole
random leech
relend mocha
renamed loch
romance held

and a surprising one...

keeps data


Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Innovative Bullet Journal Symbols (for the bored and crazy)

Sometimes, bullet journaling just needs to get crazy!

PS - Filofax lovers will note a Malden mention - of course!

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Do You Wanna Use a Filo?

Sung to Disney’s “Do You Wanna Build a Snowman” from Frozen
Kentfrom Oz's photo.
Steve: Kent?
Do you wanna use a Filo?
And plan ‘til you’re insane
You will not see me anymore
So close the door
You'll never be the same!
I used to use my iPhone
And now I don't
I wish you would tell me why!-
Do you wanna use a Filo?
It doesn't have to be a Malden.
Go away, Steve
Okay, bye...
Do you wanna use a Filo?
And write down everything you do
I think some washi tape will look great
And its never too late
to own a Flex or two-
(Hang in there, Kent!)
It gets a little scary
Owning fifty three!,
Just watching my habit grow-
(Hole-Punch Hole-Punch Hole-Punch Hole-Punch Hole-Punch)
Steve: (Knocking) Kent?

Please, I know you're in there,
People are getting so concerned
They say "he’s mental", and “gone insane”
He’s bought another one, but can he see
That every time he opens it, he takes a sniff
And gently says it’s name!
Do you wanna use a Filo?

Monday, 29 September 2014

Package-Waiting Blues

(Sung to the tune of Tomorrow from the musical Annie)

The pack will turn up
Bet your bottom dollar
That my Filo
Will come soon!

Just thinkin' about tomorrow
Holding all that leather
In my two hands,
Makes me swoon!

When I think of the days
I wait
In ambush
For the postman to come
I strum
And pray!

My pack will arrive
So I gotta hang on
'cause tomorrow's
On its way.....

I'll get it

My filo's
A day away!!!!

Friday, 19 September 2014

You Can Teach an Old Malden New Tricks!

From my nephew Nick. He's a graphic artist. You can see Nicks other work at

Monday, 1 September 2014

Ruffled by ROFL

ROFL ? Really? 
R O F L?
Let's be serious for a moment.
Do you REALLY roll on the floor?
The laughing bit I can accept,
but to react so overtly as to collapse and roll on the ground?
Is anything you read on Facebook so hilariously funny that it actually makes you do that?
What if you are on a bus?
Walking your dog on the street?
This could actually be harmful to you.
Or at the very least ruin your clothes.
No, I am sorry.
Don't expect me to believe you are twisting on the floor in hysterics by writing ROFL.
It isn't happening.
'Sniggering' would be more appropriate.
Or at the very least: mildly smirking!
Just say it as it really is.
You can do it


Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Oh, to be like George!

Now, let's get one thing clear.
George and I have never met.
We live on the opposite ends of the planet.
He's in Britain, I am in Australia. 

We have corresponded very briefly on social media and he has commented on my work a couple of times.

We are many years part in age,
We live in so different social and cultural worlds
But I would give anything to spend a day with this man.

Here's a few reasons why . . . .

I stumbled onto George's photos quite by accident a few years ago and have been a fan since then.

They are simply quite beautiful.

I am often moved by  beautiful works of art.

I am also moved by the simplicity of this natural world.

George seems to be able to capture both in topical and heartfelt photographs.

He takes pictures of everyday things.

Sometimes buildings.

Sometimes a well-worn path in some grass.

Occasionally he takes himself in a humorous pose.

A postbox.
A book.
A broken tooth.

Everything he captures on film is real.
George is real.

And that is what I appreciate about him.

George connects us to his life and the world around him
It is not a life one could call exotic.
It's just living.

And in all its simplicity,
he captivates us!

We are drawn into his world and find interest in his daily posts.

We see what he sees
and are privy to his thoughts.

Every photo has a comment

Every shot has a reason

Sometimes there is a theme or link flowing through his collections.

Sometimes they are random.

Then it happened

One day I was browsing the Philofaxy blog and I saw a post by Jane O.

I immediately recognised the photos

They were George's!

But not just his usual fare.

No trees or churches or car parks or sky.

These pictures contained an amazing revelation.

George uses a Filofax!

A pocket, ragamuffin Filofax.

As I scrolled down reading Jane's excellent post
I was lost in the heady pictures of paper, old and worn.

Tiny ballpoint pen writing;
photos and notes;
quotes and words;
thousands and thousands of words
and a drawer full of used pages from years gone by.

Bits of magazines and text and lists and lines;
sticky taped edges and rounded corners.

We see his thinking
all on paper.

It was a intimate and revealing article
sharing another part of his life.

It was not about photography,
but Filography!

His binder was old, cut up and creased.
The paper - well-turned and haphazard.

And I loved it!

I couldn't believe how amazing this collection of notes and scrawls seemed.

It was George's thoughts, feeling and observations.

It was his memory and his life.

It was part of him

and how he sees the world.

It contained his investment in the written word

the spoken word

the printed word.

It was a real treasure in every sense of the word.

In leather and paper.

And it made me happy.

In these days of bromances and mancrushes - a thing I must say I don't subscribe to,
I think I have found someone who makes me want to aspire to be something just like him.

I could never dare to copy his style or habits!
I couldn't.
That is completely George.
His binder is him.
Uniquely George.

But I feel quite privileged to be able to be an observer in the rich and quiet life of genuinely remarkable man.


You may not want to hear it,
but we salute you.

You may think what you do is perhaps mundane and ordinary
but please believe me

you really do live a life less ordinary

and we are all the better for it.

All photos in this post are owned and photographed by George Redgrave.
You can find George's vast amount of work on Flickr here or here
And some interesting videos on YouTube here
or just simply Google him - it's quicker

Monday, 4 August 2014

My Pocket Ochre Malden - Early Days!

My transition from an A5 binder which contained EVERYTHING to a small and more simply maintained Pocket Malden has gone well.
Not smooth by any means, but it is OK.
I have moved in about 10 days ago and it has been a very steep learning curve.

The Pocket Ochre Malden with Coleto 4-ink pen

I already have an A5 Ochre Malden which I use for my journal and I really love it.
So I came across a pocket size at a good price (Hi Candi) and I made the move.
No fuss, no tears - I just decided.

The metal divider tabs from Jim Holtz

I had in mind the style and look I wanted - Rustic, semi-Victoriana, Cotton-cream paper, black ink and a metal charm (Yes - everyone - here's a male who wants a charm!)

Did I mention it has a wide, full length outside pocket for receipts?

The single pen loop was a come down from the double one I was used to, but as long as I could use my Coleto 4 colour pen I was happy. The loop on the Pocket Malden was ridiculously small but I made sure I could stretch it and soon the Coleto had a new home. For THAT adventure see the previous blog entry - I am sure you'll enjoy it!

Two Moleskines and a WO2P Insert (from above)

I decided that I was sick of carrying around all the stuff I hardly ever used - so I made a list of what I REALLY needed. It came down to something very simple:

A Week on Two Pages Calendar 
A place to write TODO lists
A place to write down thoughts
A place to write notes on what I did during the day
A pen

and THAT's IT!!!

It is quite thin - not too stuffed!

I was shocked as well!
But really - all I needed on a day-to-day basis was the above.
Everything else I could place on my desk or in my drawer for when I needed it.
I had to streamline - but that small list seemed ridiculous!

My Steam Punk Fly leaf - sets the rustic tone and look.

I searched around for the right inserts.
I found the Filofax Pocket just that too thin and small.
I tried some out.
It didn't work.

My mini dashboard with a few essentials
and my own designed tri-fold calendar

I ended up cutting a Debden Vauxhall Week-To-View printed diary in cotton cream. I had the nice man at Officeworks cut it down at the spine and then drill the 6 holes I needed for it to fit.
The other sections were going to be written in two Pocket Moleskine Cahiers ruled journals (also holed for me). And that was it.

The week at a glance - it is small but manageable
(plus page turner)

I made a few laminated dividers using Steam punk Card stock and I made some page turners from a clear plastic folder cut down and topped with some very rustic looking metal tabs from Jim Holtz Ideaology range.

I added a shopping list to the front of the first Moleskine
(with washi tape)

I had some brown paper Post-it notes from eBay and smaller ones from BigW and a few highlighter thin sticky strips from Dizzy Moras. I also made my own three layered double sided horizontal calendars (July-December) based on my own A5 Calendar that I sell on Etsy. I printed them on light brown 120gsm Kraft Paper from Officeworks. They look great.

My Bullet Journal TODO list and note section
(with post-it and highlighter sticky)

I was nearly set up. I had successfully stretched the pen loop but realized that the large Coleto was not sitting properly and the pen clip was too high up. To accommodate this, I bought a plastic A5 J.Burrows Pen Holder Insert from Officeworks and cut it down and holed it to fit the Pocket. It sits better and the pen clasp secures the pen up higher and is easier to remove in a hurry - it is very plastic-looking, but as the title of this blog says - it is early days. I have plans to get a leather one done soon.

The plastic J.Burrows Pen holder I cut down.

The pages are small and I need to write small - but I am coping with it.
Another thing I noticed is that I am not keeping it ULTRA TIDY and NEAT like I was doing with the A5. This was annoying me a lot that I had to spend a lot of time keeping my Filofax so nice for everbody else to see, but in reality, I needed a quick, earthy binder to just jot things down and have it with me all day. No-one else was going to see it. It needed to be just a tool to get me organised - not a work of art.

Notes from the day which I use as reference when
journaling in my A5 Malden

So I moved in. Initially, on the advice of Steve Morton, I was going to use the A5 in tandem and leave that on my desk and carry the Pocket around and transfer things each night.
THAT farce lasted a week. 
I couldn't do it!
I had to just use one or the other.
so I dedicated myself to solely use the Pocket.
A scary but liberating thought.

A true Filofax!

So, you may be asking - 'Why a Pocket?"
Well - to be honest - I didn't think it would work.
I had tried using Personal sizes and didn't like the look or feel of them at all.
Then I saw a Pocket size in a Thrift shop.
a deep, leathery binder the same size as a Filofax Pocket.
I liked how it felt in my hand.
it was strangely comfortable
it looked good.
I kinda liked it!

I just love the clip on the Maldens! Even the sound they make!

I set it up and then gave it away to a friend of mine.
but the memory stuck.
and then I found the pocket Malden.
and it was in Ochre.
I bit the bullet.
And bought one.

The colour and texture is like luxurious chocolate.

When it arrived and I opened the box, the smell and the feel of the Malden hooked me.
It just feels right in my hand.
it is light and easy to carry.
It looks good and is very earthy.
It holds everything I need.

The stitching is unique and makes it look interesting

The colour is rich and warm
a very manly binder.
The stitching is in great contrast to the 'antiqued' leather.
it is a pelasure to use and is working well for me

so far

it is early days
but 'fingers crossed'

it might be the beginning of a beautiful friendship!

My new best friend!