BEDA #9: My pile of books">BEDA #9: My pile of books

When I tell peo­ple that I have a pile of books at home that I’m reading/about to read, I really mean a pile. Not a stack, or a tower. A pile. Spread out. Chaotic. Piled.

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BEDA #8: Greatest Blogger sample chapters">BEDA #8: Greatest Blogger sample chapters

Mmm. Today is a good day because I get to share these sam­ple chap­ters from The Great­est Blog­ger in the World (out in July) with you. Think of the chap­ters as cheese, the pdf as the tooth­pick and me as the old woman giv­ing out sam­ples next to the deli.


BEDA #7: Andrew McDonald the Shoemaker">BEDA #7: Andrew McDonald the Shoemaker

One week into BEDA and I’m find­ing blog­ging every day to be eas­ier than I thought it would be. It cer­tainly helps when I’m sent arti­cles like this one about my name­sake Andrew McDon­ald the Shoe­maker from Sydney.


That’s a photo of Andrew above, taken from the inter­view in today’s small busi­ness sec­tion of the Age. I already have to com­pete with Andrew McDon­ald the Vic­to­rian crick­eter now I have to com­pete with Andrew McDon­ald the Shoe­maker get­ting all this media atten­tion too.

To try to coun­ter­act all the atten­tion Shoe-Andrew is get­ting I have taken the Q&A he did with the Age, removed his answers and inserted my own answers:

The Age: How is bespoke retail­ing far­ing right at the moment? Are you find­ing cus­tomers are being more economical?

Me: I would say that bespoke retail­ing is most likely doing less busi­ness than usual at the moment. I say this because I have cer­tainly not pur­chased any bespoke or custom-made items in the past year or so. Exclud­ing that suit I got in Vietnam.

What changes have you had to make to the way you run your busi­ness to accom­mo­date the cur­rent eco­nomic climate?

I wouldn’t exactly call being a writer a busi­ness. But if I did run a busi­ness I would prob­a­bly cut back on all mar­ket­ing, fire most of my staff and spend my week­ends just gen­er­ally panicking.

How has the down­turn impacted on your busi­ness plans for the next 12 months?

It means that I can no longer afford to pay my busi­ness plan­ner Joseph to plan my busi­ness. Although I think he was work­ing on a five-year plan not a 12-month plan.

What things would you never com­pro­mise on and what things are ok to scale back on?

Writ­ers should try scal­ing back on com­pound verbs — they take up too much space and as money gets tighter, books are going to have fewer pages.

Is lux­ury retail­ing fac­ing the need to re-invent itself? Oro­ton mar­kets itself as ‘afford­able lux­ury’. Can this work for others?

Afford­able lux­ury is when you break into a rich person’s back­yard and swim in their pool. Or when you attend a wed­ding with the inside of your jacket lined with plas­tic bags to put caviar into. I’m not sure that Oro­ton counts.

If you had a crys­tal ball, what would you pic­ture for the next 12 months?

I don’t think this ques­tion makes gram­mat­i­cal sense. I mean, are you ask­ing what do I pic­ture hap­pen­ing in the forth­com­ing 12 months or what would I see if I stared at a crys­tal ball for 12 months in a row? The answer to that last ques­tion is…crystal ball. I would prob­a­bly just see a whole lot of crys­tal ball.

BEDA #6: Shoes in the Sky">BEDA #6: Shoes in the Sky

When I was out rid­ing my bike yes­ter­day I came across this sight:


Not that I believe the old myth that says a pair of shoes flung over pow­er­lines indi­cates the res­i­dence of drug deal­ers but there sure are a lot of shoes up there. Should some­one call the Feds?

BEDA #5: Underwear Shopping">BEDA #5: Underwear Shopping

I’m fairly sure I’m not in denial about under­wear shopping.

I walk casu­ally past the K-Mart and stall when I see the 25% Off Under­wear sign. I stop and rub my chin so as to give the impres­sion that this is the first I have known of this sale. I check the time on my phone and shrug my shoul­ders as if to say ‘I sup­pose I have time for an impulse K-Mart visit’. I walk in.

I search through the isles of the Out­door Fur­ni­ture and am sur­prised to sud­denly find myself on the edge of the Mens Under­wear sec­tion. ‘While I’m here I might as well have a look,’ I say in the body lan­guage of my swag­ger towards the underwears.

As I pass the sale under­wears I run my eyes over them all with­out actu­ally stop­ping. There is not much time to peruse since I am impulse shop­ping. The only thing I am check­ing for is the top rim of elas­tic of the under­wears — the part that the gen­eral pub­lic might see should I bend over one day or wear my pants slightly too low. I reach out and grab two under­wears with waist elas­tics that I deem to be ade­quate in appear­ance and I hus­tle back to the Out­door Furniture.

In the line for the check­out I check my shop­ping list which has ‘Gro­ceries’ writ­ten at the top of it. Clearly, my K-Mart trip has been a slight detour to buy my brother some new under­wears. I grab a small tin of mints from the candy stand and strate­gi­cally place them on top of my pile of goods, con­ceal­ing the under­wears from the naked eye. The check­out girl processes my items and I give her a smile that says ‘My wife asked me to buy these to clean the shower with.’ She looks at my bare ring fin­ger as I sign the receipt but to her credit she says noth­ing but ‘Have a nice day’. I shove my goods into my back­pack and walk out like I am very dis­ap­pointed that I didn’t find any­thing to buy at K-Mart.

I’m fairly sure I’m not in denial about under­wear shopping.

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