Home in your Head…

In a surprise move that shocked the blogosphere the team at a Mind of Its Own took a second week off to relax, unwind and reboot the system. From the Chief right down to the mailman who happens to be one of two lazy office dogs who are more concerned with bringing in gifts of the dead bird variety than actually doing the jobs they were employed for in the office otherwise known as the madhouse.

There is something to be said for reboot the system every now and then. Getting away from the daily grind and just shutting down. Clearing your mind and recharging the batteries that push us through the weeks, months and years in our nine to five world of jobs that on average 67% of people are unhappy doing. So why stay doing something that most of the time isn’t satisfying or enjoyable? Money?, Stability?, Laziness?, Fear?, whatever people’s reasoning for not doing something about improving their happiness, as long as they don’t look back and regret it than all book in our book.

We pondered a topic for this week’s instalment, do we write about world events? Do we become like the thousands of travel and body image bloggers already flooding the internet with their health tips, travel stories and often unwarranted advice on how you too can get a Kardashian bum by never skipping glute day. Whilst we often take the Mickey out them we do so in jest as we respect the efforts and hard work they go through each week including the mental strain of wondering whether their audience will appreciate their writing. But that doesn’t help us come up with a topic.

So rather than settle on one topic we thought why not just follow our namesake and let this week’s instalment truly take a mind of its own. That being said we thought we’d start with the fallout from Australia’s favourite reality love show, yep the Bachelor, finally someone has done the right thing by them and picked no one! Did he waste the public’s time and the time of those girls? Ah who cares its reality TV remember! Looking for love in all the wrong places should be the title of the TV series. Good on the honey badger for having a set on him to do right by him plus it made of entertaining TV.

On a side note are we all that bored of our own lives that we become outraged by a reality TV show where someone goes against the grain? Come on people we are better than that. It’s not real and no doubt there was a lot of scripting going on behind the scenes on what he could and could not say in the finale. It’s like telling people who survivor Australia is filmed on some tropical island and not in the lush rainforest behind our office in Northern New South Wales or Queensland. Come on Australia wake up and smell the roses pretty please.

Speaking of waking up, do yourselves a favour and don’t read the news first thing in the morning unless you are happy to see the idiotic acts of a race that is meant to be highly intelligent. At this point we are waiting for the dolphins to walk from the water and flipper slap us for being so stupid. In what must be a slow news day we had everything from Channing Tatum’s new girlfriend some little know Uk Pop Star by the name of Jessie J to our fluro clad tradies duking it out over a road rage incident. Heck even old mate Mel Gibson got slot for losing 14 kilograms. At least he wasn’t throwing phones at people, that’s a plus.

Surely there are some worthwhile things happening around the world that deserve someone to report on. And why is it that you rarely hear of nice things in the news. A professor once said after bollocking his students about being naive to the world that no one wants to read fluffy nice pieces. Disaster, chaos and the dark side of life will sell more papers and nice piece about humanitarian efforts in some far off land. But does that mean that these nice pieces should be pushed to the bottom of the page and give less acknowledgement than a politicians affair or love child? Hmm makes you wonder doesn’t it?

In a world where everything is open to comment and interpretation by any and everyone with smart device it makes us wonder whether people prefer to worry about what’s going on around them, rather than having to deal with their own issues and problems in their lives. We’d be remiss to say that at times throughout all our lives we haven’t dug out problem not of our own so that we didn’t have to deal with things going on in our lives. The only problem with that is the more you sweep under the rug the bigger the pile gets before it starts spilling out from under said rug.

Once your rubbish reaches out and begins to touch you that dirty feeling that creeps in where you should have done something earlier to sort it out. Taps you on the shoulder as if to say ‘Told you so’. Then comes the feeling of regret and shame for being too weak to do something about it. Do we really want to be those people?

It’s no wonder people create and build safe places in their minds, a place where no one and nothing can harm them. A home in their own head if you will, somewhere to retreat when they need a break from the world around them. We’ve read several articles on kidnap victims, child abuse, domestic abuse where the victims had created their own safe place in their minds where there tormentors can’t reach them. In some cases it’s the only thing that has kept them alive. In other cases it has been the world in which they have given their lives to escape to.

The mind is an incredible place and the saying it’s all mind over matter is often true in some cases where people have mentally focused all their energy into achieving something that they were told was beyond their reach. The mind can do some amazing things when aligned with the heart and soul of an individual. It is in our opinion the most beautiful part of someone. It can be creative, destructive, nurturing, caring and loving or it can be the complete opposite but it is still the most amazing part of anyone you will meet.

As the sun dips over the horizon on yet another episode of A Mind of Its Own, we are reminded we are all human and in the words of The Beautiful Girls ‘We’ve all got to learn ourselves before we can judge someone else’. So until next week, work on you and ensure you have some fun! You only live once so make the most of it! Be safe and don’t do anything we wouldn’t do! Peace be the journey…

Somewhere in Neverland…

It’s that time of year again, that season of seasons, the part of the year where some, not all Australians decide they are going to follow in the traditions and celebrations of our brothers and sisters across the sea. It’s about this time you are all thinking to yourself what in the hell are these guys on about? Have they lost the plot once again? We know it’s the name of the blog but do all of the guys and girls that write for them really have to follow the premise of the publications name? Well that’s a negative but it tends to work in our favour.

So what do pumpkins, sheets and lollies all have in common? Individually nothing but put them all together on one night of the year and you end up with kids running around on sugar highs, mutilated pumpkins and mums good sheets now having holes in them along with the edges taking on a dirty blown hue from being dragged through the streets. Welcome to Halloween. The second best day of the year for all our alternative friends after comicon or Supernova. Another excuse for Man, woman and child to dress up as their favourite character or something scary.

An event that can be a fun family activity or the stuff nightmares are made from if you believe all the horror flicks that have been made. After all it is Halloween and who knows what could be lurking in dark, around the corner or down the drain. Spooky is often the theme of the night and if you believe some of the things on the internet it all started as a pagan ritual and we all know those crazy kooks were into some weird stuff to say the least. But alas the show must go on and we better pump out a blog for you fine people to read or waste some time out of your day pondering whether we are mad or just slightly insane here.

Besides an excuse to dress up and knock on random strangers doors to ask for a treat, cause let’s be honest no one does magic anymore and anyone carry around a deck of cards in their pocket either has a serious gambling problem, is a shark or your local blackjack dealer. What is the premise behind Halloween? A quick search on the world’s largest search engine and 1 Million plus results later, a few clicks and we over at the most reputable website on the net to learn all about why Halloween is celebrated, how it started and why it’s loved by people all around the world now.

Ok what we’ve learnt so far is that the Irish are to blame for Halloween, the Americans also get blame for commercialising it and Christians can cop some flack for trying to turn it into a religious holiday. Halloween is an annual holiday celebrated each year on October 31. It originated with the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, when people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts. The evening before was known as All Hallows Eve, and later Halloween. Jus so we are all on the same page here’s a definition of what Samhain means. Samhain is a Gaelic festival marking the end of the harvest season and the beginning of winter or the “darker half” of the year. Traditionally, it is celebrated from 31 October to 1 November, as the Celtic day began and ended at sunset.

Now that we know we can use Halloween to ward off ghost does that mean we don’t need to dress up? Of course not all the Cosplay kids would be extremely disappointed if they didn’t get one more opportunity to wear their cleverly created costumes one more time for the year. Halloween allows the young and old to be someone else for the night, to forget about all their worries and disappear under the mask of someone else. Unless you are the dirty old man from down the road and dress up as a giant penis with a pirate hat and start calling yourself the captain.

A further flurry on the keyboard and google was soon directing the team towards the most popular costumes for Halloween 2018, which sadly did not include Donald Trump but did include a few surprises from cows through to avocado on toast along with a list of pop culture costumes some slutty anything and more Britney Spears than anyone should ever see. Adding Australia to that search and we finally hit pay dirt! It looks like our political incorrectness and love for being larrikins leads to what some might say is politically incorrect costumes. Finally Donald Trump got a nod holding his wall high with pride, going as a schooner seems to be popular, any costume with an added appendage that can be flashed, lamps that need to be rubbed and hold the phone a middle eastern person riding a camel.

And people wonder why we get called a racist country. Not only did we invade a land, degrade and destroy a culture whilst keeping them oppressed for far to long but we also take the piss out of every other country. At least they can keep a leader in place for longer than six months before deciding to squabble in their own party because Jim was left out of a decision and now wants his turn at the big boy table.

Meanwhile we are busy preparing to ensure we create some shock and awe through the streets or at the local Halloween party on the 31st. As many Australians don their costume of choice on the night and saunter off to get liquored up at a part or walk the streets with their kids as they munch down their trick or treat spoils. Some may do it a little more traditionally with a bonfire, some candles and a few prays to ward off the evil spirits. All we know is that you can have fun and dress up like a dick for the night in some cases literally.

No doubt we’ll see the cosplayers at their best, the mums and dads with their last-minute efforts and lots of people getting annoyed that their doors are being knocked on by complete strangers for no other reason than to solely get something for free. A little like hawkers that come to your door trying to sell you something. Stock up on the lollies and chocolates folks because Santa Clause could be coming to a town near you. Not sure it’s the best costume but Halloween allows you to be who you want to be.

To the Captain we salute you! Whoever you might be just remember to keep it clean and enjoy Halloween folks, the team here at A Mind of Its Own have decided to go as Vegan T-Rex’s this year in an effort to stay as far away from any politically insensitive topics that may arise from poor costume choices. So from the team we wish you a spooky evening and don’t forget to brush your teeth after all those lollies and chocolate. Mmmmm Chocolate!!! So until next time it’s a solid see you soon and remember if it isn’t fun it isn’t worth doing…

Abandon Ship or Abandon All Hope…

Like discovering a new planet or species of animal, all discoveries require research, so for this week’s episode the team at A Mind of Its Own pulled on their gym shorts donned their singlets that barely cover the bulging beer bellies and laced up our best pairs of dunlop volleys in order to head out and get some much needed exercise. Like a bunch of clowns we jumped into the Tarago and headed off into the Sun, towards the surf and sand, the glitz and glamour of Australia’s home of the cashed up bogan. Welcome to Ipswich!!! Just kidding we are back again on the gold coast looking like a 70’s NBA team with way too much skin showing for middle aged white males.

First of all if you are searching for a McDonalds, KFC and Hungry Jacks what you may have noticed is there is pretty much one on every major street corner. What you might have also noticed is gym’s have become the health junkies fast food franchise. We’d do the maths and give you the average amount of gyms per suburb but it’s just passed whiskey o’clock and our brains only seem to work between the hours of 9 to 5 without the aid of alcohol to drive our cognitive patterns. If it’s after 5pm our filter packs up for the day, our sense of humour comes home to increase the hilarity and our caution to the wind disappears altogether like last nights vindaloo down the dunny in the wee hours of the morning.

Like Roxanne putting on her red light, the gyms are lit up for all to see. There bright advertising invites you to come inside and transform from flab to fab. The reception is generally manned by a beautiful person to show you exactly what can happen if you too come in and spend time sitting in other people’s sweat after they forget to wipe down the machines. As we watched the hard earned pineapples leave our wallet and fly across the counter into the male models chiselled hands, a row of pearly whites flashed a knowing look our way. We began to wonder what drives people to come to these testosterone filled, bloated ego dens. We half expected to walk into the changerooms and transport into an American football locker room with blokes flicking each other with towels and the coach handing out steroid injections.

We’d entered the belly of the beast, there was no turning back now. We needed to soldier on and stop making excuses as our team of unwilling beer guzzlers was lead up stairs to the gym floor. With our tails between our legs we’d have just as soon as run back down the stairs and all the way to the safety of the NSW border then be in this hell. We’d entered a land never seen before… Everywhere we looked, we saw people with no necks and ladies with bigger guns than some of the Australian Navy’s warships. Mirrors adorned the walls with people staring at themselves as they ensure there form was correct. Form you ask? So did we after we questioned how vain all these people were.

Have you ever wondered why a lot of people just refuse to go to the gym these days? Well at a mind of its own we think we’ve found the answer. Enter any gym around Australia… First of all if we got you there you’ve no doubt noticed all the mirrors, what else have you noticed? It’s the dudes with tattoo sleeves bulging muscles, skinning legs and no necks right? Or the older ladies with bolt ons, makeup that looks like its been applied with there tradie husbands trowel and the orange glow of their skin? Or is it the looks you keep getting everytime you go to use a machine that one of the roided up egos has been alternating between when he or she is not staring at themselves in the mirror wondering how they’ll go this saturday night trying to pick up. And some of these people could quite literally pick up other people and throw them around a room in a fit of aggressive passion.

Like crotchety old men we are pushed towards a bench and told to lift some weights. The term “Do you even lift” gets thrown around a little too much and the muscle men in front of the mirror laugh and shake their heads as we strain to get the bar and the meager 5kgs on either end moving in a repetitive nature that the trainer is happy with. By now he is starting to lose his patience with our un-coordinated lack of ability to do anything that resembles bench press. Finally though he wins through and like true professionals we find the exercise for us.

Who knew bicep curls and drinking were so closely related. As we lifted heavier and heavier pretending we were lifting stiens of Germany’s heaviest, sweetest ales to our mouths. The hour session continues to drag out as we move from station to station still perplexed by how serious people are taking their workouts. There are guys throwing around weights channelling their inner Arnie, young ladies who have almost done an hour of nothing but squats as they work their glutes into a Kim Kardashian frenzy for the perfect bum.

Triangles flex in front of the mirrors forgetting leg day for the 100th session in a row. There skinny little legs starting to bow at the strain of carrying around there large muscled upper bodies. The serious gym goers grunt out a session, sweating as they push themselves harder and harder through each exercise while the plastics do just enough to keep there figure and slight tone while trying to wear as little as possible to attract looks from all around. The trainers laugh at their own jokes and talk about their weekends while pushing clients to breaking point. Creepy guys watch on as girls try to work out in peace, no wonder a lot of women go to Fernwood. And then there are the other guys. The ones who just want to maintain their fitness and do it without losing their dignity.

Finally done it’s like a weight has been lifted off your shoulders, in this case it literally has, all those weighted lunges can’t be good for your knees, back and any other part of your body. That deep burn you keep hearing about isn’t so deep as you feel it begin to radiate through your entire body like an oil slick spreading from a crashed tanker. Walking out feeling like we’d been run over by Optimus Prime and the entire Autobots entourage. The pain pain was only going to get worse as we soon discovered. Two days later… enter DOM no not a bloke named Dom who we had a disagreement with whilst at the gym sitting in his sweat but delayed onset muscles soreness or DOMS. It’s the pits and we are starting to see why people hate the gym.

Ok so the gym might not be for everyone, or more importantly gyms on the Gold Coast might not be for everyone. If you like looking at yourself in the mirror, have ridiculous tattoos, drive a car like your part of the fast n furious crew, have no neck and think you are super good looking then the gold coast gym scene is definitely for you. If you want to go and work out without having to deal with all this we suggest you do during the day before lunch or after lunch before work finishes. Or you could always just install your own home gym and be done with the machine hogs.

As we sneak away from yet another session in the gym where our arms and legs are burning and our egos are feeling a little shattered. We hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s installment of a mind of its own, no roid rage was endured or encounter in the making of this blog. We hope we haven’t offended any gym frequenters in our take on Gold Coast gyms. If we have you’ll get over it before the next set is done. For another week it’s over and out and from the team at A Mind of Its Own, you do you champ.

Raspberry Beret…

Well for once in our lives we’ve decided to agree with the 1985 hit song from Prince and embrace our inner fashionista. Welcome to this week’s instalment of the nation’s fastest rising blog. Like a slow bake cake we’ll rise when the temperature is right and the world is ready for our antics. Sit back, relax and let the good times roll as we take you on yet another journey into the wonderful world around us. The inspiration for this weeks post came to us in an alcohol fuelled rendition of Billy Joel’s ‘We didn’t start the fire’.

Like all things a mind of its own this one pretty much wrote itself in the Sunday morning hangover drive through line of your closest McDonald’s. As the fog of one too many beers began to clear a beautiful post manifested itself in the writing department of our minds. As we stated this one wrote itself on the back of quiet night in with a few friends. If you are an inquisitive person you are probably asking yourself what Prince, Fashion and Billy Joel could have inspired? We certainly were as the boffins went to work pumping this one out.

When you think fashion what do you think? Catwalks? Overly skinny girls modeling the summer or winters latest designs around the globe? Men strutting their stuff or really, really good looking people aka Derek Zoolander? Well one piece of clothing that often gets overlooked, underrated and not given enough credit or airtime on the catwalks of Milan, Paris and other old world fashion capitals around the globe. What is it you ask? As far as being cryptic goes you wear it, it can cover even the most ugliest of people and fix things like no other.

We are talking about head coverings, hats, beanies, headdresses, yamakas, if it goes on your head there is a fair chance you won’t see it being displayed at fashion week. Classed as accessories they’ve been the best of friends to premature balding men the world over, worn the wrong way by redbull fueled extreme athletes and kept the warmth in people’s heads in the harshest of environments. We would have like to have spent the time doing some research into hats, beanies and the like but that would have been to painful on a Sunday afternoon as the rest of the team nap around us.

The most popular of head clothes is by far the cap, worn by all to shade our faces, reduce the risk of sun damage, cover our balding heads or bad haircuts, stop surveillance cameras getting a clear shot of our face, hide hangovers and most of the time as an alternative to having to do our hair. While cowboys and farmers prefer the wide brim, hipsters have adopted the fedora, kids and young adults wanting to maintain their youthfulness have chosen the flat brim. The Jewish community have there own little hat although it only really covers the bald spot at the back of their heads.

Hats come in all different shapes and sizes, they have various functions and are made from many different fabrics.But we don’t need to tell you our readers as we knew you are all a bunch of smart eggs. What we do need to tell you is that this blog was inspired by a particular piece of head clothing. For generations men and women have been wearing it and yet in everyday life it has seemed to dwindle away. Those that have one may have to dig into the back of their closest to find it but we here at A Mind of Its Own are telling you to do it and predicting they’ll make a come back. Unlike the thousands of fashion bloggers out there we won’t be including any photos of us in front of the mirror modelling anything.

What happened to the Beret, well besides militaries around the globe adopting it as headwear of choice for some of their regiments. Back in the mid eighties Prince made them popular particularly Raspberry ones. Speaking from experience we can safely say they are the most underrated in the hat family. Yes they look good on military men and woman standing at attention on the parade ground but they are also comfortable, warm and can be worn a variety of different ways. We did our homework on them to ensure all myths around this amazing style of hat were debunked. Trying on a few was like putting heaven on the head, the beret is truly a modular piece of headwear that can dressed up or down. It’s both smart and casual at the same time.

So back to those beers that were being had while a thirty something male danced around the living room singing Billy Joel. This suave and sophisticated cat was rocking none other than a beret. Looking part military, part hipster he reminded us that the Beret had been forgotten in the world of fashion and is a hat that more people should consider when they step into their local hat shop. We are assuming there are still stores that are dedicated to selling the globes finest head clothes? If not there is always the Internet that brings us so many wonderful things! Like this blog for instance! There’s nothing wrong with a shameless plug.

From A Mind of Its Own to you, if you take anything from this blog or any of our blogs do yourself a favour and think twice about which advice you take from us but for now. If you own one get it out if you don’t go and get yourself one. Support the Beret! We certainly will be, for this week anyways. If we were a military body it would be our head clothes of choice. Many a charismatic character has worn the beret proudly, generally in the cinematic universe but hey if John Wayne can wear one why can’t we all and who knows maybe the French will get back into the spirit this year at Fashion week in Paris. If not we can always ask for another revolutionary like Che Guevara to make them popular again.

As the sun hits the horizon and starts to disappear from view, our hearts let out a sigh signalling the weekend is yet again almost over and tomorrow we head back to the real world. Argh work, perhaps we’ll start a petition for 4 day work weeks in which everyone does 10 hours a day. Long weekends every week, or at least a siesta like our Spanish friends. Who doesn’t love a nap in the middle of the day. From the team here, thank you once again and enjoy your week working for the man. The Europeans are on to something with their work/life balance. Power to the people! Peace out.

The Quiet Things that no one knows…

It’s another double week here at A Mind of Its Own headquarters, double martini’s, double espresso, double trouble and for our adoring fans that means you get double the awesomeness to get you through the weekend. We’ve searched high and low for another stellar topic to follow-up on the pampered pooches soft piece earlier in the week. It didn’t take the boffins down in the lab long to pull out a topic that I am sure strikes a chord with many of our female fans and one that this writer’s wife has voiced her opinion quite strongly about on several occasions.

We live in a world that is interconnected, we have mobile devices, instant message, video chat, you name it and it’s probably already there. We are still hanging out for a true hoverboard though like Marty McFly but give it a couple a years and we are sure we’ll be yelling at kids to slow down as the gravitate past at speed. So with all this technology you think we (Men) would be happy getting on a conference call and gossiping like a bunch of school kids behind the toilets at lunch while puffing on some stolen menthol cigarettes as we just aren’t quite prepared to go the full leaded option just yet.

Being male we can safely say that we are happy to chat but prefer to be doing something while we are chatting. Playing around of golf, some poker, shearing sheep, pretending to work at desk, sitting at your local watering hole, are just some of the examples of guys getting together and having a chat about life. So what do you do if you have a group of mates who want to catch up regularly but are all in different locations and have varying reasons as to why catching up face to face isn’t always possible. Distance being number one. Unlike our female counterparts who can sit on a call for hours, upon hours filling in friends on their week and how many cute guys or girls they saw at the gym while eating a whole tub of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream on their own, Men just can’t focus on the conversation for that amount of time.

We’ll give you an example, you promise your other half that you will take out the rubbish on your way to work one morning, however in your rush to get ready you spend way to long in the mirror trimming your wayward nasal hairs and forget. So upon your return after a hard days work at the office where you’ve stood around the water cooler filling your day talking to anyone who will listen so you don’t actually have to sit there and look at spreadsheets, you walk in the door and immediately get chewed out. What you will see is the nodding and agreeing coupled with an apology. What you don’t see is that we’ve gone on autopilot and are already wondering what is for dinner or to watch on TV, are there any beers left in the fridge?

The example is not that we aren’t listening, we are! We hear it all, it’s that we are already thinking about the next thing. This is what a conversation between males is like, we flit in an out of the conversation not always present. Hence this week’s topic is something that keeps us all focused. Allows us to catch up and spend our time wisely doing two things at once. We know shock horror! Men can do two things at once! When we really want to yes we can do multiple things at once without even thinking about it.

The late 80’s and early 90’s saw the beginning of trend that would dominate the home entertainment industry for years to come. No longer did you have to go to the Arcade to play your favourite machines they were now all available to play on your own console hooked up to the television in the safety of your own living room. It was around this time that obesity and the links to discovering the colonels eleven secret herbs and spices started to also began to grow. The video game console had emerged and those lucky enough to be able to afford one would slowly become fans of some of the biggest cult heroes of our generation.

As technology advanced so did consoles and along with these advancements over time came the ability to interact with people all around the globe. You could be racing cars with John from Delaware, or in the trenches of Normandy with Raj from India. It is just another way of connecting people around the world. For a group of 30 something males it made it possible to jump online and play video games while catching on what has transpired through the week or month. The wonder of it all is that you can be stretched across the globe but for that hour of two as you battle your way through Mordor or reenact the landing on Omaha beach you are all in the one location.

So what is it about this that automatically makes it Geeky and frustrates wives, partners, husbands etc? That’s a question we have asked on several occasion and like comics and anything that people don’t understand or want to understand it’s all make-believe and not reality. Correct and no one is deluding themselves that it is. Ok there are a few who live in fairyland but like all things in life there is always going to be those one or two people who take things too far. Yes video games and gamers used to be associated with the geeks however more and more these days you will find what used to be nerdy, geeky and weird is becoming more and more mainstream.

In a world full of stereotypes many people have always associated gaming as something that only the loner, disenfranchised, nerds, geeks or children do. It is however a multi-million dollar industry and is attracting people from all walks of life for various different reasons to various different games. With games now becoming more and more like chapters of books people often finish a game and play it over and over again to see what they have missed whilst they wait for the next installment.

It’s not an escape from reality it’s merely a virtual interaction between people across continents, around the globe and maybe one day out into the far reaches of the galaxy. A way in which to interact and often work together in teams to complete a common goal. Some companies have even gone as far to go online and find future employees who exhibit online the qualities they are looking for in their staff. So escape from reality or a way of interacting and doing something with friends near and far? You be the judge but for the team here at A Mind of Its Own we advocate interact with friends and family via video games just as long as it doesn’t take over your real live. We don’t need hermits there is already enough cranky people in this world.

For another week it’s over and out from the team. We hope you’ve enjoyed the double dose this week and we look forward to gracing your inbox, iPad or desktop some point next week. Peace out hombres!

We Don’t Go In There…

This week we thought we’d start out a little different, rather than our usual hello and long-winded interlude to another episode of A Mind of Its Own, we thought maybe we’d just get straight into it and fire away at the subject that has weighed most heavily on our minds and wallets for the week. Then again if we did that this paragraph would become redundant and you’ve have to hear the writing staff drone on incessantly about how they weren’t given the opportunity to introduce their writing and this weeks stellar topic.

Continuing on with our travel theme we decided to actually take to the skies in an attempt to give our readers a more in-depth look at modern-day travel. In doing so we opened our wallets and let the moths take flight grudgingly. The Amex was swiped, our bags were packed and we took to the closest airport to board a flight bound for the City of Churches. Before we could that though we had to endure a rather hands pat down, explosive wanding and the worst part of all, the part that really got our goat and almost saw the Incredible Hulk make an appearance in the middle of the Gold Coast airport. Well we’ll get to that shortly for now we need to take a breath, relax and let you join us on our journey.

Around the world no matter what continent you are on, or where you may call home. The moment you step foot into the terminal its like you are entering mini city that allow for us to fly from A to B in less time than it would take to drive. A little like the towns that highways haven’t quite bypassed as of yet. Like any city, they have their own economy, their own vibe and most of all their own inhabitants. We are talking about the people who call these places work, not just the pilots and flight crews but the ground staff right through to the ladies and gentleman that man the information desks, shops and kiosks around the airport. Think of them like Santa’s elves if Santa was a multibillion dollar industry oh wait that’s a topic for another day.

Does that include the people trying to get you hooked on wine as you walk from gate to gate you ask? Yes it most certainly does, we call them the naughty elves and they are unfortunately apart of the airport community but really no different to the airport bars. They just soften you up with free samples first before they get you to open your wallet in order to pay for the monthly subscription of wine you’ve drunkenly been talked into before you walk past all their little storefront friends who lure you in for a look while you waste time before your flight boards. The more shops you walk into the more the suggestive the devil on your shoulder becomes reminding you of all the things you forgot to pack or might need on your journey. All the advertising doesn’t help either as it subconsciously erodes away the commonsense walls in your mind.

It’s no wonder that a trip to the airport often starts with a trip to the bank to take out a loan. Mostly for the time spent at the airport on either end of the trip no matter how short or long. So why is it that food and items are so expensive at an airport compared to heading down to your local Coles or Woolies and loading up the trolley?. After our arrival yesterday we were shocked and almost fell off our stool as the barman put down an eagerly awaited cold amber ale in front of us an promptly demanded payment to the sum of $12.50. Now before you ask it wasn’t a pint, it wasn’t a craft beer or an international beer. It was a bloody Great Northern and we found it very un-Australian to be paying an arm and a leg for a beer. Whilst paying that amount for any beer that is of a standard size is still ludicrous most people would be ok with paying it for a craft beer or a beer they may not have tried before maybe.

An Australian Beer at an Australian airport at those prices has us scratching our heads and wondering whether we need to start investing in airport shares in order for the dividends to fund a beer or two while we are there. Now it would be ok if the excessive pricing was kept to just alcoholic beverages however we soon discovered that price hiking expanded across any and everything. Head into the newsagent type store, books take a $3 to $4 dollar increase. Lollies increased by a dollar or two. The surf shops have everything at the recommended retail price not a dollar less. Even heading over to Hungry Jacks for a Whopper will cost you an additional $3 dollars more than it would if you were to head through drive on your way to the airport.

So what makes retailers increases their prices to the maximum chargeable amounts in the market. Some would argue the cost of rent is higher at an airport and others would argue that it’s the cost of staff and the weird hours airports keep. But the plain and simple argument we will make at A Mind of Its Own is simple. Costs of goods at airports are what they are due to supply and demand. They have a product, you want the product and it’s not like you can simply leave to go get it somewhere else unless you are hours early for you flight which lets face it most people are not unless they have nowhere else to go.

What are your alternatives you ask? Either plan ahead or take out small loan if you plan on spending more than an hour while you wait for a flight ensuring you fed and well hydrated. Perhaps stopping off at a shopping centre on the way might be your best bet to cover all your bases and ensure you save yourself a couple of hundred dollars and a trip to the bank before the creditors are on your case about repayments. Or you could just choose to drive if you’re heading interstate and have the time. God knows taxiing on the runway at Kingsford Smith Airport feels like you are driving down to Cronulla in order to get a big enough run up for takeoff.

Whatever your preferred method of travel, the one thing we have learnt this week is that airports are expensive places where supply and demand reigns supreme. If you are thinking about taking a trip, do yourself a favour and plan ahead. Like everything, money makes the world go round and the aviation industry is a multi billion dollar beast that sees you coming from a mile off, not just because the planes are big and rather noisy. So for another week we bid you farewell and hope you have a pleasant week. Please remain seated until the captain has turned off the fasten seat belt and when opening the overhead lockers, please take caution has luggage may have moved during the flight Thank you for choosing to Fly A Mind of Its Own.

P.S Keep your eyes peeled for another sneak peek chapter of Fire for Effect coming your way…

Art House Audio

A blank piece of paper to a writer is no different to a painters blank canvas. The endless possibilities of what could be, run through your head as you stare into the maze that is the amazing mind of the creative type. Looking for the one thing that jumps out at you to be splashed across the canvas. Luckily for you it’s that time of the week where you can shut down your own brain and let us take you on a journey through the wonderful world around you. Again we light up the stage with another worldly hot topic and throw caution to the wind as we venture down the garden path to bring you this week’s instalment of A Mind of Its Own…

Each week we endeavour to bring you something scintillating, something that stirs the imagination and gets the blood pumping as you put yourself in the writers shoes. Well maybe not the pair that are currently being worn without as our fluff ball intern decided he’d have a little chew on them, but in general we aim for an “in our shoes” experience throughout the entire post. So this week we thought we’d look into the wonderful world of technology and travel. We would have reached out to John Candy for some assistance on planes, trains and automobiles but sadly the great Canadian is no longer with us and hasn’t been for sometime.

We are pretty sure the inspiration for this one came from the ability to sit on the train and tap away on a tablet connected to a wi-fi network or mobile network being beamed from a satellite high above us in the earth’s orbit. It kind of makes us sad that, no longer do we sit and talk to our fellow humans around us while we travel. Instead we all prefer to bury our heads in our smartphones or tablets. Looking around the carriage there is not one person reading a newspaper or book well not a printed one that can be seen. Kids sit with their faces glued to screens watching Dora the explorer or Peppa pig while mum makes duck faces at her phone for her latest social media post or tinder profile picture.

As technology has advanced over the ages so have our methods of transportation. Gone are the days of saddling up your horse and riding for days on end to get from one point to another. Now you can literally be as lazy as you like and not have to lift a finger. A great example of this is the old Uber to the train station, the train to the airport, the plane to a new city, the monorail to the ferry, the ferry across the bay only to get the bus to your front door where your smart home turns on the lights, boils the kettle and tells you all you need to know about the day.

It does raise the age-old question? Ok maybe not age old but certainly a question that is being raised more and more in today’s society… Has technology made us lazy? Or has it made for a more interconnected world? What it has done is erode distance and time zones, allowed for remote work and created a blogger for every aspect of our lives. Heck there are a thousand and one fashion bloggers, millions of travel bloggers, technology bloggers, there are even bloggers on bloggers. But there is still only one A Mind of Its Own…. Wow shameless plug! Get around us!

With the ability to now document and comment on every aspect of life it starts to make us wonder whether George Orwell was more than just a writer? Visionary? Perhaps 1984 was more than just a novel and was a glimpse into what life will be like in the future. They say big brother is watching but with smartphones, tablets and the constant ability to capture everything from audio to video and upload it to millions around the world in seconds it does start to paint a picture that we are all part of the social media problem. It gives cowards the ability to abuse and hide being the keys of a message board while they victimise mostly innocent and undeserving people.

Have we lost touch with our fellow human beings? Have we lost our abilities to open and expand our minds? Are we conditioned to believe all that is before us and that the world holds no secrets that our minds can open? What a connected world does give us is a voice whether or not that voice is all in sync is a different story. No longer do we need to travel across the globe to see someone face to face, instead we can jump on Facebook, Skype, WhatsApp and thousands of other applications that allow for connect through the utilisation of data rather than down a voice line routed through copper wire to a local exchange.

There are so many advantages of living in today’s world and we are only just on the cusp of delving into what technology can actually do for us and for the world. We often wonder though, whether people weigh up the disadvantages or risk that come from introducing new technology in to the market? Is there some kind of FDA approval for technology advancements where they have to run through multiple batteries of tests and approvals before they can hit the market? The answer to that question would be a HELL NO, thanks to social media products can get a jump-start and companies have the opportunity to market them before they are even released in most cases if its something people really want they’ll get a teaser.

So what about transport and the transportation industry, we hinted that as technology has advanced so too has our methods of getting from A to B. Things have become faster, somewhat safer and in comparison to the average salary today a hell of a lot cheaper. Some would argue that is due to the automation of factories around the world and cars, trucks, trains, planes and boats now only requiring minimal human interaction in the construction process, others would argue its due to the cost of materials and the materials used in the production of these feats of mankind.

In every aspect of our lives we interact with technology throughout the day from the moment we wake up. We may not realise it but most things are interconnected these days. There isn’t a point that doesn’t touch technology of some sort. No longer do you need to hunt, gather or foliage in the woods. With a touch of a button most things can be delivered right to your front door. Again lazy or economic with how much we scream out that we are time poor these days?

Like a train off the tracks this one has gotten away from us, the intent was to look at the world of transportation and technology as they intermingle and instead you’ve ended up with an insight from the perspective of a confused technologist who has now spent way too much time on a train rambling on about the disadvantages of living in a modern society. Until next week be cool, stay in school.

Assemble the Empire…

In an effort to keep the momentum going, A Mind of Its Own is looking into the future, not in a Marty McFly back to the future kind of way. Mainly our future and where we are going as a movement, as a blog and more importantly as the think tank we feel we’ve become. Our intention is not to preach, educate or push our opinions but to let your mind wander in amazement at the world we live in as you (The reader) switch on the old noggin and think about the topics before you. We look to inspire and provoke the creative side of your brain in an effort to create conversation and wonderment.

No less than two years ago you would not be reading any of this. All writing from this particular writer was personal and off-limits even to those closest to him. Confidence in himself and the ability to write something interesting let alone thought-provoking were at an all time low, in fact truthfully they were non-existent. Besides those points the mindset to put writing out there for others to read and share. Wind the clock forward two years and you have numerous blogs and a book on the way. What changed you ask? A lot changed, but the biggest change of all was acceptance of who he was and where he was headed.

The first part was admitting the need for help and admitting to himself that he needed to allow his brain to just let the thoughts flow. The minute that acceptance was granted was the moment the thoughts became clear and the mind was finally not just a jumble of thoughts but a myriad of possibilities. The creative portion of the brain was finally allowed to operate freely without any restrictions or fears to where those thoughts might lead once they were put on paper of listed in a word document or google document before being divulged to the public by way of blog post.

It didn’t happen in one instantaneous moment like a flash of lightning striking the earth, it took a long hard journey with many ups and downs. Before the rebuilding of the mind, body and soul could commence. It was something that wouldn’t have been possible without the support of family and friends. There were changes that needed to be made to the mindset and acceptance that a busy mind isn’t a curse. Out of chaos often comes beauty from rebirth, like a phoenix rising from the ashes. In this case it was a creative ability that was willing to throw caution to the wind and put fear of judgement aside. To allow you to read thoughts, feelings, fears, opinions and options open to the world.

What came from that is the blog you are now hopefully subscribed to including this one you are reading and several extracts from a book that will be released later in the year. Does that make us a little scared? Yeah more than a little… Even for the most extroverted person in the world it is still often hard to put yourself out there for all to see and judge. I guess that’s one of the things wrong with Human beings we are often quick to judge. At some point we all need to learn ourselves before we judge someone else. But who are we to instruct on how you should treat others heck, if the government won’t apologise properly for the stolen generation why shouldn’t we or you for that matter pass judgement?

We’ve worked out that A Mind of Its Own is not for everyone, it’s often a little quirky and like the name it does often deviate off on a tangent, taking a mind of its own. We head down the rabbit hole like Alice in Wonderland with each and every topic pouring our heart and soul into every piece whilst giving it a touch of A Mind of It’s Own magic to make it even the darkest topics seem a little lighter as they flow from your screen to little part of mind that gets you thinking and questioning everything you already knew about life.

So what are we going to do with A Mind of Its Own and where to from here? Well if we are honest we’d like to get the public involved a little more. We’d like to get requests for topics from our loyal and supportive fans. There are plans to throw a podcast into the mix and we’ll be showcasing a lot more of this writers coming debut novel. One thing we can promise you is that we’ll continue to write with our no holds bar, comedic style about topics that may fly under the radar or more specifically your radar.

We’ll expand our reach utilising social media platforms and hopefully word of mouth from you our readers in order to grow our user base. Before heading to Washington and challenging Trump for the presidency. We figure we’ll challenging him to an old-fashioned duel on the white house lawn. Back to reality we just hope to continue to bring you some good writing that can make you laugh and forget about your worries while you focus on the house of cards that is the world. One strong wind and it’s all coming down around us.

In an attempt to answer the question of where A Mind of Its Own is going. Well we could have done that in one word. Nowhere. Well nowhere in terms of it’s not going to disappear. If anything it will grow and we’ll spread across platforms, mediums and where ever else we can make our presence felt. Who knows we might even get some t-shirts made for you to purchase should you want to support your favourite new blog on the net and keep a roof over our heads. Ok now we are getting ahead of ourselves but as they say… Dream big or go home.

So as we assemble our empire and prepare to take over the world one blog at a time. You’ve been fortunate enough to read this weeks installment of Doc Brown’s favourite blog from the future. We’ve joined forces to with Marty McFly to ensure you’re aren’t chicken and continue reading. Until next week thanks once again and we hope you’ve enjoyed a little insight into the thoughts on where we’d like to take this here blog and any other outlets of media we decide to pursue in getting our public service announcements to the greater public. Until the next episode jump in the DeLorean and take a trip down memory lane or into the future.

Rattling the keys to the Kingdom…

After last week’s excitement of space camp… ahhem… Oh yes sorry we meant Space Force, we scratched our heads and wondered how we could ever top such an insight into the most exciting thing to happen to America since the Olsen twins discovered puberty and Trump asked Mexico to build a wall between them. With the world around us crumbling into a pastry chefs worst nightmare we went to the true powers of the world, google, to give us an idea for this weeks Mind of Its Own.

We thought we might find some inspiration from recent travels or something in the news to write about but it seems the world we live in (The writers at this here institution) has become a little boring over the last couple of weeks. Have we used all our best material? and like a dressmaker before the big show are left with something that looks more like a potato sack than a dress for a special occasion. Unless it’s a potato sack race then you’ve nailed it better than you ever dreamed of.

So after a lot of procrastinating, typing deleting and repeating the process we decided to focus this week on the wonderful world of dieting. That’s right you heard it here first, we are tackling diets like a fat kid on a cupcake. We’ll trim the fat, exercise your… Minds unless there is some new fad where you lose weight from staring at a screen while you read online blogs? Heck there probably is you know and some clown is making millions off it. Ok maybe not millions but he or she is living comfortably in their beachside house or apartment having never spent a day in their life at university, but all of a sudden has become suitably qualified to give, yes you the reader dietary advice.

Where to start??? Atkins, usually A comes first or should we head straight to the latest fad, what was it again? High Fat? Yeah you heard us high fat and if it’s not high fat it’s some hybrid paleo/neolithic/vegan diet where you only eat things raw. Surely soon enough we’ll just go for the foragers diet that consists of nuts and berries with the occasional feed of campfire cooked meat of whatever variety you can get your hands on. There’d certainly be a lot of lean, malnourished people in the world who would be happy with results.

Like a fisherman on the high seas we baited the hooks, cast our nets and trawled the internet to find out just how many diets are listed online. We didn’t have to go far to find sites promising to make you trim, taut and looking terrific in weeks not months just like any infomercial will promise you. Started to remind us of all the ridiculous workout contraptions that have need produced over the years. The office favourite is still the shake weight and please do yourself a favour and head on over to YouTube type in Shake Weight and enjoy the laughs.

Back to our diets from Keto, to Paleo they all have one thing in common! That would be the ultra fit person spruiking them. You can guarantee this person works out five to seven days a week, has always worked out and already eats quite a healthy diet. He or she won’t be found in the line at the local Colonel to get a bucket of the colonel’s original recipe in yet another attempt to crack the 11 secrets herbs and spices. They certainly aren’t propping up the local bar as they down their 10th schooner in an effort to out drink Macca from work who’s been talking big onsite all week as the concrete base to yet another greek monolith home is built in Carlton.

After further googling to understand terminology that has clearly been coined by today’s generation the team finally started to get a handle on the various weight loss diets available to the average Joe. We visited both mens and womens sites offering us insight into how each of the diets on offer for free, introductory prices or a fee that will have you selling a kidney just to participate and die of starvation. Confusion aside some of the diets started to sound appealing particularly when they promise better focus, control and long term benefits to the mind, body and soul.

DASH, Flexitarian, Weight Watchers, MIND, Atkins, Keto, Paleo, CSIRO, Pollo something or rather, hell even religions are offering belief based diets. Whilst some diets are clearly needed for people who are intolerant to certain things we pretty much came up with a diet for everything you could potentially think of. Remember Jared from Subway? I don’t but apparently in an effort to lose weight be dropped the Big Macs, Zinger Burgers and Whoopers replacing them with a healthier fast food option of sugar packed subway sandwiches.

Now we could give you a brief outline on each of the diets we came across but 94 pages later I fear we would have lost some of you to starvation. We know once you pick up that smart device and start reading you can’t put it down until you’ve got your weekly fill of A Mind of Its Own so we chose not to write 94 brief paragraphs outlining all the diets Wikipedia listed. It did get us thinking though that perhaps we could start a distraction diet where you distract yourself whenever you feel the need to eat. Weight loss diet fad here we come. You get your money for nothing…

94 different diets out there categorised into 7 major subcategories and further subcategories in each. It’s amazing that scientist can come up with all this information on nutrition but still haven’t come up with a way to stop world hunger. I mean if people can choose to be polopescatarians surely we can choose to combat hunger for those less fortunate and don’t have a choice in their diet due to lack of shelter, money, food and water. No, no you continue to look at your who magazine, cleo, marie claire and ponder whether you look ok based on what hollywood tells you. Does Who magazine still exist?

So here’s some friendly Mind of Its Own advice!!! Unless you need to be on a diet for medical reason or you are vegetarian either by choice or because you can’t break down meat. Exercise regularly, eat things in moderation and be happy! Things could be far worse for you. If you are reading this life is already pretty damn good for you. You no doubt have a roof over your head, power, clean water, clothes, food in a refrigerator and most importantly access to a smart device. So like drinking wisely, diet right and take the time to create your smoothie to go outside and visit nature it’s that place outside your house with trees and water.

That’s a wrap for another week! We dipped our toe in the deep end and chickened out when it came to diets. There is just far too many choices for us to decide which ones to cover and what isn’t going to put you all into a deep sleep through sheer boredom. We hope you’ve managed to digest your way through our skimming of a topic that really doesn’t hold much of an interest to anyone here. Until next week, eat, drink and be merry and if you can’t be merry be Mary…

Starships and Apocalypse…

Well, well, well… Another week down and we are powering into the second half of the year. What a year it has been so far! A Mind of its Own has worked hard over the past 6 months to bring you some quality pieces to take your mind off the working week allowing you to enter into a world of numerous possibilities. We’ve given you our take on a lot of topics but this week we thought we’d enter a world that quite honestly seems like a place for private school kids and fish n chip shop owners.

Politics or politicians is certainly something we never thought we’d find ourselves writing about and it certainly isn’t on the approved list of topics that adorns the office wall. So why politics this time you ask? That’s a damn fine question and one which we will answer in the following paragraphs to come but before we do that we need to take you on a journey to a galaxy far, far away. Ok maybe we don’t and we might need to check with Disney if we can use that line before they sue us for copyright infringement.

There is one man that has said some of the dumbest things you will ever hear in your life. Hated by the intellectuals and adored by the those who lets say aren’t the sharpest tools in the shed and think insest is ok. We’ve asked the question and we know our readers are certainly asking the same question. How on earth did this mexican hating, balding, red faced, douchebag make his way to the white house? It does lead to even bigger questions about America even allowing him into the big gig. Yes we know there options weren’t great Hillary or Donald but come on Yanks really Trump? The same guy that wants to build a wall to keep out the mexicans?.

So by now you are asking yourselves how on earth we ended up down this rabbit hole and started on our anti-trump campaign. Well let’s rewind to three days ago and if you watch the news it was the most exciting thing Trump has done or said in his time in office. For those of you that prefer to get your news through social media or like to be updated in other ways we’ll spell it out for you. There are currently five branches of the U.S Armed Forces (Army, Air Force, Navy, Coast Guard and Marines). Well our wig wearing buddy announced he wanted the Pentagon to create a sixth branch.

Yes you heard it here probably not first but what Trump announced would have certainly got a lot of geeks super excited and putting there stereotypical wussiness aside and running down to the closest enlistment office to join the one, the only U.S Space Force. Space Force it sounds like something from a 1960’s science fiction film where the earth is attacked by flying saucers and giant aliens from outer space. We honestly wouldn’t have believed it ourselves if it hadn’t been televised on every news station around the globe. He’s buddies Putin and Kim Jong Un were having heart attacks as they looked at their own military forces and their plans to ward off the impending alien attacks.

This comes on the back of the US leaving the United Nations Human Rights Council, it got us wondering whether they were already preparing to build black sites on the moon and Mars in order to interrogate aliens for all their secrets? Oh wait didn’t they already do that at Roswell and then area 51? Hmm are we heading down the conspiracy theory path, no we aren’t but we thought we’d throw that in for a little twist in the plot and to get the readers thinking about all the silly things the US have done throughout the years in their pursuit to police the world and become the dominant power.

Back to the orange faced toupe for a moment this is the same guy that doesn’t believe in climate change but wants to build a wall in space to keep the aliens out? We don’t know that he wants to build a wall for sure but we do know that he wants to build a death star and ensure the US dominance in space incase Russia or China decide to join forces with the aliens and attack the states. We’re not sure why they wouldn’t just attack them on earth but hey a lot of us have always dreamt of joining the Space Force and fighting outside of our atmosphere.

Next thing we know Trump will be spruiking the light and dark side of the force and sending troops off to learn the ways of the force from an old little green man who is full of philosophical one liners. All the while his mate Kim Jong Un will be dressing up as Darth Vader so the two of them can have light saber fights instead of saber rattling on an international scene. What we are questioning though is this the start of a new space race? Who will get to Mars first? Who will build the first space wall and who will have the first space plane?

One thing Trump’s announcement has done is send the defence industry into a spin as they plan and develop weapons for future tenders that will no doubt come out from the Pentagon over the coming years. Will we finally see some lasers and star fighters? We can only hope! As for Donald Visionary or lunatic? It’s a fine line and one we know that he’ll continue to walk while his time in the white house but for now Space Force onya Trump you’ve just made every five year old boys come true! Who didn’t want to fight aliens in a far off land at some point in their childhood!

Well that’s a wrap! Another week down another blog that has taken on a mind of its own. We hope many of you have relived your childhood dreams or at least had a good giggle at our slight insight to the wonderful world that is Mr Trump and his great idea to create SPACE FORCE. We are still laughing at the name surely the military will come up with a better name for this fighting force in outer space. Until next week Peace out and hopefully we won’t need Space Force to save the day.