Thursday, May 22, 2008

Pick the actor

I went to see Iron Man at the movies this week.

It was much better than I expected it to be - mainly due to the fantastic lead performance from Robert Downey Jr. He's awesome!

Usually I know quite a lot about movies before I see them - who's in the cast, the director, etc. Although there was a lot of hype for Iron Man, I somehow missed it - all I knew was that it was based on a Marvel comic book, and it starred Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark and Gwyneth Paltrow as Pepper Potts. I didn't even know that Jon Favreau directed it, and I love him!

Anyway, during the movie I got very distracted because I was trying to work out who played Obadiah Stane (Iron Monger), and who voiced Jarvis (Tony Stark's computer).

Here's a photo of Obadiah Stane:

This is a very famous actor, and he was very good in Iron Man, but I just couldn't pick it. Can you? Scroll down a bit...
I was embarrassed to discover that it's The Dude!

Yes, that's right - Jeff Bridges. Very very famous. It was the bald pate that got me.

And now to the voice of Jarvis. Unfortunately I can't find a decent clip of it, but basically Jarvis the computer has a lovely English accent - very droll. I convinced myself that it was Jude Law at first, but by the end of the movie I was sure it was someone else who I really like - but I couldn't work it out.

I couldn't be bothered waiting for the credits to show me the answer (and apparently he's uncredited anyway), so I checked on IMDB when I got home...

And found that Jarvis was voiced by Paul Bettany:

He talked about the voice role in a recent interview. I adored him in Master and Commander, and even quite liked him in the silly rom-com Wimbledon. He was freaky as Silas in The Da Vinci Code.

As Dr Stephen Maturin in Master and Commander

As Peter Colt in Wimbledon

As Silas in The Da Vinci Code

Aaah, I love solving mysteries like this. It's very satisfying. I really should be studying though...

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Open wide, come inside

Silly John

I was excited today to learn that John Hamblin, aka "Silly John" from Play School, has just released a biography, "Open wide, come inside" (written by Peter Richman).

Play School was such a massive part of my childhood. I adored it. I loved Silly John and Noni Hazlehurst the most, closely followed by "Good John" (John Waters) and Benita Collings, and then all the others - Don Spencer, Alister Smart, Jan Kingsbury, etc.

Benita and Good John

My favourite episodes involved Silly John and Noni - they were always hilarious, and even as a child I knew that Silly John was being a little bit rude... Years later, I've watched old episodes and have seen how he appealed equally to children and adults.

Silly John and Noni

My favourite Play School memory is Noni reading "The Elephant and the Bad Baby". My sisters and I loved that book, and the way Noni read it with funny voices was genious. I wish I could find a clip of it.

Rumpeta, rumpeta, rumpeta...

I've seen more recent episodes of the show, and it continues to be wonderful, even though it's been modernised of course. With hosts like Rhys Muldoon and Justine Clarke, it'll never be dull.

Justine and Rhys

Hopefully I can introduce my kids to the joy of Play School some day, and read them "The Elephant and the Bad Baby", complete with funny voices...

Friday, May 16, 2008

I've never felt whiter

Yay sent me a link to Stuff White People Like, another wonderful blog:

#99 Grammar

It's a perfect description of me. That's not necessarily a good thing. But in my defence, it's my job to be like this...

This paragraph is particularly accurate:

"Another important thing to know is that when white people read magazines and books they are always looking for grammar and spelling mistakes. In fact, one of the greatest joys a white person can experience is to catch a grammar mistake in a major publication. Finding one allows a white person to believe that they are better than the writer and the publication since they would have caught the mistake. The more respected the publication, the greater the thrill. If a white person were to catch a mistake in The New Yorker, it would be a sufficient reason for a large party."

Endearing, no?

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Halfway there

I've just finished my 4th rotation for the year - geriatrics. We get one week off (so generous!) and then it's back for the other 4 one-month rotations (gastroenterology, cardiology, thoracic oncology, Shoalhaven), then exams, then a slightly longer holiday, and then 4th year starts in October. It's a very busy year.

Geriatrics at a suburban hospital was soooooo cruisy. I arrived at 9am most days, and the registrar and intern told me to make the most of my cruisy term, and leave after lunch! I did that a few times, but otherwise I stuck around a little longer to do long cases and help with admissions and discharge summaries. I learnt a lot about all the paperwork an intern has to do. Can't say I learnt that much medical stuff - the main aim with geriatrics is to get patients mobilised and home or to a hostel/nursing home. I did learn what SIADH is though. One patient died while I was there. It was sad - the family asked how long he had left, and the consultant said, "It could be tomorrow, it could be next week". It was "tomorrow". And the death occurred in a 4-bed room, so the other 3 patients were quite traumatised.

It's been an interesting and busy month for me, apart from geriatrics.

We're on holidays from 8 December 2008 to 23 March 2009, and during that time we have to do 8 weeks of "elective", which basically means something medical, somewhere in the world. People tend to go overseas, although financially that wasn't really viable for me. So I applied for a scholarship to do my elective in Vietnam, and I won it! It's a brilliant scholarship through the Học Mãi Foundation. It covers airfares, accommodation, and living expenses. 6 of us are going for 8 weeks, and one for 4 weeks. I'm really excited - I loved Vietnam when I was there last year, and can't wait to go back. I'm going to do 4 weeks in Hanoi and 4 weeks in Danang. We also have to do some fundraising as part of receiving the scholarship, which should be fun. (Hope my friends and family have deep pockets...)

Let's see, what else has happened this past month? I farewelled a very close friend, who left Australia for good to travel the world and ultimately return to the USA. It was an emotional and lovely farewell. Hopefully I'll get a chance to visit him in the States someday.

I've also made a foray into the world of Internet dating! More on this in a separate post sometime, but so far I've chatted to several nice blokes, have been on one date (was OK), and am going on another first date this weekend, which I'm really really looking forward to. It's fun meeting new people!

And I started boot camp last week! I did it last year and loved it. So far it's been great this year too. I have a cold at the moment, so I'm struggling with breathing - it'll be interesting to see how I go on a 7km run at tonight's session...

So now we have one week off, during which I plan to study. A lot. A hell of a lot. And I need to keep studying consistently, because I must avoid a repeat of last year's Barrier-failure nightmare. *shudder*

Sunday, May 4, 2008

ANZAC biscuits

ANZAC biscuits are my favourite biscuits to make (and eat). I make them all year round, but recently I made a couple of batches specifically for ANZAC Day. They're quick and easy to make, don't require many ingredients, and are very tasty! I made a batch for a family lunch on ANZAC Day, and another batch for my PBL group.

This recipe came from my late Nanna. There are many variations, especially regarding the type of sugar used (some recipes use brown sugar, and some use caster sugar - though I like the crunch you get from plain white sugar), the amount of golden syrup, and the baking time (and temperature). Feel free to experiment - I've never baked anything other than this tried-and-true recipe. I'm a creature of habit.


  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1 cup desiccated coconut
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 125g butter, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon golden syrup
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
Makes approximately 24 biscuits

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Sift flour into large bowl, then add coconut, sugar, and rolled oats. Mix well.
  3. Add butter, water, and golden syrup to a saucepan and melt it. Remove from heat.
  4. Add bicarb soda to the melted mixture and stir to combine.
  5. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir well to combine.
  6. Place small balls of the mixture onto a baking tray. (If you like, you can press lightly on the top of each ball so that the biscuits spread out when baking - but this can also cause them to crack.)
  7. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown. Shorter cooking time = chewy biscuits; longer cooking time = rock hard biscuits. Cool on a wire rack.
  8. Enjoy!