Consumerism Friends and loved ones

The weekend… the good, the bad and the ugly

The good

We had a low-key but enjoyable celebration of Marita’s birthday on Saturday. In doing so I discovered that both our suburbs are host to dog-related cafes — the Dancing Dog in Footscray, and the Spotted Dog in Bentleigh. And both do a very fine meal.

The bulk of the rest of the weekend was spent lazing, relaxing, that kind of thing. Just the way a weekend should be.

The bad

My tipping was up the creek — only 2 out of the possible 6 games this weekend tipped. As much as I’d like to think I’m reasonable at tipping, after the 8 out of 8 two weeks ago, and the occasional win of an annual competition, basically it’s all fluke.

Then there was the mission to buy a ladder. (No, not a footy ladder.)

I worked out that what I needed was a 2.1 metre single-sided ladder (yeah, they still follow imperial measurements and come in 30cm/1 foot increments). 1.8m would be too short to safely and easily get myself through the trapdoor in the ceiling to relight the heating/leave rat poison for my visitors. 2.4m would be too big to easily manoevre the ladder down the hallway and into position. 2.1m would be perfect.

Having determined that the fine ladder maker Bailey makes such a thing, and having equipped myself with my sister’s car complete with roofrack and ties to bring home such a product, do you think I could find one? Nope. Bunnings may have 10 different types of mouse trap*, but they don’t have a 2.1 metre single-sided ladder. In fact I visited two branches, and was out of luck each time. Neither did Penhalluriacks.

To add insult to injury, I didn’t have convenient change for the sausage sizzle at Bunnings Moorabbin, either. Sometimes they’re commercial outfits, but this was the real deal, run by a kindergarten for fundraising. Oh well.

Happily the Bailey web site can tell you what shops have ordered a particular model in the last 3 months, which gives me a few good leads for the next installment of the hunt.

*Or they may not. I’m really just speculating.

The ugly

I happened to walk around the back side of Bentleigh tonight. It’s pretty euch back there, with darkened, ugly car parks, which probably occupy more space than the entire area of shops on main road. I suppose every suburb has something like this tucked away, a consequence of our car dependence. But it ain’t pretty.

Update 29/6/2006. Google maps have updated their satellite images for the area, so now you can see it from above. This is Centre Road between the railway station and Jasper Road:

Google satellite image

(Click to see it in Google Maps.)

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.

5 replies on “The weekend… the good, the bad and the ugly”

Is that hardware store still at the corner of Normamby Road and Inkerman Road in Caulfield? Patronised them for many years. Good service always. Good on you for calculating what height ladder you need. We only ever just bought a ladder that was vaguely right. Will your ladder height be high enough to reach the gutters to clean them out?

Yeah that hardware store is still there. Alas, they are not one of the ones that Bailey reckons has the particular product I’m after.

Yep, 2.1m will reach the gutters, the trapdoor inside, and should be sufficient for getting onto the roof to do my long-awaited swap to the better TV antenna. Everything I could want in a ladder!

Try one of those ladders that fold over so they’re twice as long. That will get into a roofspace as high as yours (mind that the base/top of the ladder will fit through the trap-door). Ladders also come with a warning that you shouldn’t stand on the second-from-top step or higher.

Pfffppsh. Stupid warnings.

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