CREATURE FEATURE SUNDAY: 50 Thoughts While Watching Robocroc


Hooray! Those geniuses at Syfy cannot be stopped. This installment of Creature Feature Sunday looks at that classic tale of top-secret-nanobots-meet-giant-crocodile in Robocroc (2013). They had me at “nature and technology create the world’s most lethal weapon”, frankly.

Let’s be real: the only thing cooler than movie monsters is robots. Robocroc, then, seemed pretty promising as far as concepts go. And yet.

This is how it played out:


  1. Ooh, a rocket! Is Robocroc from space?
  2. No, it’s crashing.
  3. Into a zoo!
  4. Nanobots! Yay!
  5. We’re seriously not messing about here – that’s 30 whole seconds of exposition so we’re good to go.
  6. That is actually more exposition than I anticipated.
  7. Apparently no one has noticed a crashing rocket: it is business as usual at the zoo.
  8. Oh my. The effects budget was far lower than expected.
  9. Corin Nemec is here!


    Please help me.

  10. “You keep forgetting Stella is an Australian saltwater crocodile, not a shih tzu”. Mate, I’ll tell you about shit zoos – you’re in one.
  11. If there isn’t at least one Streetcar-inspired “STELLAAAAA” in this movie I will be so pissed.
  12. So, quick review: the army is here, nanobots have got to Stella and turned her into a weapon, space debris was super localised, nothing to see here.
  13. This also seems to be the bit where the screenwriters wanted to include all the croc facts they found on wikipedia.
  14. Robocroc-vision keeping us ahead of the game – “reboot”, “momentary paralysis”, “food detected”.
  15. Stella is losing her hide to a “metallic shimmering substance” which I am guessing is, you know, actual metal and not on-point highlighter.
  16. Lion enclosure! “The saltwater crocodile is an apex predator” (#crocfacts). Game on!
  17. Oh, the waterslides are still open. Phew.
  18. Wait – is the waterpark part of the zoo?
  19. Seriously?
  20. Ok then.
  21. Gratuitous bikini shots.
  22. Most unbelievable scene so far: two empty sun-lounges next to each other in packed waterpark.
  23. Comparing scars! Classic movie flirting! Get it, grrl!
  24. All the lakes, pools, ponds and lagoons are connected underground because it helps save water. Seems like a health concern to me if you’re a zoo-slash-waterpark… but anyway, shit gon’ get real.
  25. That dude is fishing? What the hell kind of zoo allows fishing?
  26. fishing

    Totally legitimate zoo activity.

  27. Seriously.
  28. Might this now be a good time to evacuate the waterpark, maybe? No? Ok.
  29. Yawn, this needs to get a move on.
  30. Stella is a crocodile disco ball!
  31. I don’t have great eyesight, but surely someone has noticed a 25 foot armoured crocodile moving about the place? It doesn’t exactly scream incognito.
  32. Oh, they’ve locked people in. Shady government agencies represent.
  33. I am sure locking that one gate will help contain the situation given all the interconnected pools and stuff.
  34. “A robot crocodile? Like a Transformer or something? Hehehe, Robocroc”. Hey – that’s the name of the movie.
  35. There are three ways to shut down the nanobots. Place your bets.
  36. Awwwww yeah! That’s the money shot – Robocroc just took out a goddamn chopper.



  37. We’ve called in crocodile hunter backup. Wrestling soon please.
  38. Scuba diving with tranquilizer guns.
  39. Electricity!
  40. Your plan did not foil Robocroc. Robocroc is queen.
  41. Wrestling. Called it.
  42. Actually I am totally on Robocroc’s side at this point. These people are the worst.
  43. Jesus Christ, this movie goes for HOURS. (Actual running time: 81 minutes).
  44. “Whatever that thing is, it’s still part crocodile”. And part robot. That’s the whole premise. We get it.
  45. Everyone is in the sewers for some reason? What is even happening?
  46. “What in a croc’s cooch are you doing here?” QUOTE. OF. THE. MOVIE.
  47. That is possibly how I will greet people from now on.
  48. Electromagnetic pulse time.
  49. No one shouted “Stellaaaaa”. Missed opportunity.

In a nutshell? Genuinely terrible. Robocroc rates 1 out of 5 poorly planned adventure parks.

‘Til next time,


Current Obsessions: breakfast, enamel pins, and learning Spanish

Going out for breakfast

Shout out to my favourite meal of the day: breakfast.


Not only is breakfast the best meal to go out for (in your face, dinner!), but something about taking myself out for breakfast just makes me feel like I have my shit together. Also I feel all inspired and writerly if I write in a cafe. Yeah – I’m that guy.

For those playing at home, my fave local weekend breakfast hang out is The Middle Store on Winston Avenue at Melrose Park. Try the beetroot hummus bagel and the baklava. Yums.



Enamel pins

My denim jacket has never looked cooler. 2016 sure has shades of the 80s and I’m pretty happy about it. Enamel pins clustered together appeal to my insatiable urge to collect things, my love of brooches, and my propensity for online shopping. I’ve been so impressed with so many designs, I just can’t stop. Favourites:

Just make sure you that if you are shopping for pins you are supporting independent designers and not the big chain stores who are ripping off their designs.


Learning Spanish

So, back in the day, I studied Spanish at uni and promptly forgot it all. Well, all the useful stuff anyway. I can still sing the first verse of ‘La Bamba‘, but that wasn’t exactly on the curriculum. It’s just fun to do.

Cut forward to now and I’m trying to learn again, this time using the Duolingo app which is free, super easy to use, and something I got hooked on really quickly. Still, better to be addicted to something where you learn valuable skills than something like, say, Candy Crush (and trust me – I’ve been there, it wasn’t pretty).


Anyway, remember: para bailar la bamba se necesita una poca de gracia*.

Which counts me out, frankly.

‘Til next time,



*  In order to dance la bamba, you need a little grace.


Mental game: the ‘run and hide’ method

A lot has been written about goal setting specific to roller derby. A few years ago, my team mate and derby idol St Eve (aka Eve Inbetta) wrote a  great post that I found incredibly helpful on how to set meaningful derby goals – you can read it here. But while much gets said about how to set goals and why having them is a good idea, not much gets said about what to do when you follow all the steps, do all the right things, and still fall short of your goals. Mental game training is all about resilience, but when things just don’t work, repeatedly, despite your very best efforts, it can seriously dent your confidence. It certainly did mine.

I’m not a natural athlete by any definition. And while derby was once lauded as a sport for non-athletes, the way the game is played today is far more suited to those with a natural sporty edge. I take derby seriously, I try to set realistic goals, I work hard on fixing my mental game and improving my weaker skills. But ultimately I ended up taking a very long break this year because not a single one of my goals for the first half of 2016 came to fruition and, I’m not gonna lie, it hurt. A lot. It’s not like I was just casually plodding along, hoping for the best.

I tried HARD and I failed.

I have thought long and hard about why this was and what it meant, and why I felt so humiliated. I’ve been skating with my league for 3+ years. Had I set unrealistic goals? I didn’t think so. Am I just a bad skater? I’m not great but I’m not awful, surely? It’s easy to say don’t compare yourself to others, but when people take to something you struggle with like ducks to water, it’s hard not to wonder what secret they have that you’re missing out on. I did my best, what more could I do? I’ve pondered a lot during my break whether there is even a place for me in derby if I can be around for this long and still not achieve some seemingly very achievable things.


Why don’t you work?

There’s a great saying about falling down nine times and getting up ten, but let me tell you how exhausting that can be. As an over-thinker, over-analyser, and my biggest critic, soldiering on was only serving to dig my hole deeper. I was too close, too critical, too sore. It’s no surprise to me that eventually I had to run away to lick my wounds. This mental game business is hard work, and while goals are important and there are ways to set good ones that put you on the right track, success is never a given. It’s a sucky truth that sometimes things just don’t work out.

Taking a break has not been easy. As much as I needed to clear away some thoughts and set my derby brain in order, the trade-off has been feelings of displacement and serious FOMO. Still, taking a break was the right thing for me and if it has taught me one thing it’s that I’m not ready to give it all away. I hope I can find my place again soon.

So how do you build yourself up when you fall short? Shit dude, you’re asking the wrong girl because I have no idea. But when I head back to training in November, I’m going to start by trying a few of these and seeing how it goes:

  • Focus on more process goals and fewer outcome goals
  • Take a step back; don’t over analyse
  • Ask for feedback; ask for help
  • Celebrate small wins
  • Be kind to yourself

If you have any advice, I’d be keen to hear it.

‘Til next time,


[Don’t] Send in the Clowns

You know that old saying: it’s all fun and games until people decide to dress as clowns and lurk about the place scaring the living bejeebus out of people? Well, welcome to 2016, where that bucket of weirdness is our unfortunate reality.

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock (smart move: the clowns can’t get you there) you will have heard about the ‘clown purge’. It’s such a big thing, that in the US schools have gone into lockdown and at Penn State, 6000 college students charged out of their dorms to HUNT CLOWNS reportedly sighted on campus.


To. Hunt. Clowns.

You know what that is?

Mass hysteria.


2016 is weird, man.

The craze or whatever you would like to call it has now hit Australia and the police, for presumably the first time ever, are issuing warnings to not dress as clowns:


Who knew clowns would invade before zombies, right? What’s interesting to me about the clown purge is the sheer scale of it. Even Stephen King is weighing in on this one because, let’s face it, he didn’t really help make clowns any less scary by writing It. (Too little too late, Stevo. You brought this on yourself).

Think about it. What was the last thing the general populace en masse freaked out about? Anyone? Because it seems in the age of social media we’re collectively pretty snappy about nipping hoaxes and bullshit in the bud. So why have clowns of all things whipped us all into a terrified frenzy?


There are lots of reasons to be afraid of clowns, as it turns out.

The general theory seems to be communication focused – wearing a mask or grease paint hides facial expressions leaving us with no means to read the facial clues which help us determine whether they come in peace or want to eat us. There’s a disquiet that comes with expressionless beings. It’s sinister. Additionally, context is so important to how we react to things. Sudden, surprise clowns appearing out of nowhere in ordinary settings (as opposed to say, a circus) break an unspoken agreement because they aren’t supposed to be there, and our brains freak. That’s science, man. I’m telling you.

I’ll tell you one other thing. If I see some weirdo dressed as a clown pop up in my rear view mirror I am pretty likely to run them down with my car. I won’t even feel bad about it.

But if nothing else, imagine what it will be like when we are old, reminiscing about that time in 2016 when we all hunted clowns. Oh, how we will laugh. And isn’t that, after all, what clowns are supposed to be about?

‘Til next time,


Gilmore Girls Revival Anxiety

Let me make myself abundantly clear. I freakin’ love Gilmore Girls. I just do. As fictional TV settings go, Stars Hollow is pretty high on my list of places to live; a perpetual autumn wonderland where pop culture is currency, coffee runs freely and junk food doesn’t make you fat. It’s just so darn nice, you know? So I did a small, happy dance when news broke of the upcoming revival, a four part ‘year in the life’ mini series to be released in November.

But. BUT. The more I read about what’s in store for the revival, even with a promising trailer and the comforting knowledge that original show runner Amy Sherman-Palladino is back at the helm (can we pretend season 7 never happened?), the more I am set upon by a distinct unease. Ok, ‘set upon’ is a bit strong, but there is definitely unease lurking there, somewhere beneath the glossy sheen that six hours of fast talking, heartfelt, dramedy seems to promise. Remember how excited we were when Netflix brought back Arrested Development and it was okay but… just okay? I’ve got worries.

Ghosts of boyfriends past.

All of Rory’s ex boyfriends will be there. Blerg. People seem so divided over which of Rory’s three suitors should have been hers forever but can we not take a sec to remember they were all, in individual ways, kind of terrible? Is it a High Fidelity style self-examination-through-past-mistakes situation?  I hope not. I hope Rory’s storyline will not revolve around her ex boyfriends.

My hope for the revival is that the return of the three dudes is for cameo value only. So much of the conflict of the show is around how Rory has the pressure of being something in her own right – to not be defined as wife, like Emily, or to make mistakes and struggle like Lorelai. I hope in the revival we get to see her be that something, the something she set off to be by turning down a proposal to go be a journalist on the Obama campaign, instead of defining her by her relationships to Dean, Jess and Logan.


Blerg. (Source)

The fate of Lane Kim.

Oh Lane, how much more you deserved than one dud shag which ultimately saw you stuck in the small town you longed to leave, with twins, while your husband went on tour. Please be only back in Stars Hollow for a short visit between doing kick ass things and living a rock n roll lifestyle.

Hep Alien forever!

Stars Hollow circa 2016.

Stars Hollow feels so firmly fixed in the early 2000s and I’m just not sure how it will fit in 2016. How will Doose’s Market compete when you know there is likely a Wholefoods not ten minutes down the road? How is Mrs Kim coping with hordes of hipster antique pickers, casually instagramming the living shit out of all those autumn colours? What’s on Kirk’s youtube channel? I seriously want to know. But the world is a heavier place than it was in 2006 and what if Stars Hollow has lost its cosy shine? We’re already going to be faced with tears over the death of Richard Gilmore. What if come 2016 Stars Hollow, itself practically a character in the show, just doesn’t quite work?


Highly instagrammable. (Source)

The trailer seems to be trying its hardest to enforce that we are very much ‘in the now’, with cracks about Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop, Amy Shumer, and the corpse flower. As much as I’d love to hear Lorelai’s takes on Pokemon Go and uber, I hope it’s not just topical gags. There are better ways to bring out a maturity of ten years. As a town that wasn’t always diverse or inclusive, wouldn’t it perhaps be nice if the rumoured wedding was, say, Michel’s?

Regardless of how it plays out, don’t ask to see me come 25th November. I have plans.

‘Til next time,


Things the SA Blackout Taught Me About the Upcoming Apocalypse

In case you missed it (where are you? is it warm? can I visit?), South Australia was hit by massive storms this week which, on Wednesday, saw the entire state without power. It basically looked something like this:


Kidding. From where I was sitting it actually looked like this:


Now – I’m not one to be dramatic*, but sheltered in a pub, two wines in, it certainly seemed that amid the torrential rain, wide spread loss of power, and general ominous atmosphere there were certainly shades of the apocalypse about the place. There would be zombies before we knew it.


Did a statewide blackout really signal the onset of the apocalypse? It did not. But it might have, right? Surely that will be Step One when old mate Armageddon rolls into town? So let us prepare. Here are some things that the blackout taught me about the impending end of days:

  1. I am woefully unprepared. Torch? No. Batteries? Negative. Important phone numbers? Yeah, in my dying phone. The news keeps telling people in affected areas to enact their flood plans. Is that something I am supposed to have? I don’t. I don’t even have a waterproof jacket.
  2. What I do have, though, is about 1,000 Ikea tealights, which were finally, finally useful.
  3. Reading by candlelight hurts your eyes.
  4. The whole thing was dead boring. What was left to do? Go to bed? I am going to be so well rested in our post-apocalyptic future if there is nothing to do come 8pm.
  5. There is a facility to mark yourself ‘safe’ from flooding on facebook. As far as I can tell marking yourself ‘unsafe’ does not signal for help.


In a nutshell: pack a brolly, enact your flood plans.

Stay safe,


*Okay, fine. Yes, I am.





Top 5 Unexpected Benefits of Roller Derby

When I started training for roller derby, I had an idea in my head of what I wanted to get out of it – it was for fitness, it was to be social, it was for fun. I’d be stronger, more coordinated. I’d be able to do cool stuff on skates. Derby though – in that delightful derby way – is full of surprises. Here’s my top five unexpected benefits of roller derby…

1. I don’t need to touch door handles
Because I can just hip check every door and drawer closed. Keeps my mitts germ free and all.

2. Lulls in conversation do not exist
You know why? Because I’m talking about derby. Why can’t I do that thing I’m trying? What wheels should I get? Who’s going to training? Who’s not going to training? Did you see that awesome thing that worked? Where did you buy your sparkly shorts? Or, with non-derby people, “Oh, you haven’t watched derby? No, there isn’t a ball. Let me explain…” Awkward silences? A thing of the past.


Photo by Erin Green. Note my lack of sparkly shorts.

3. Body confidence
Never did I ever think I would be ok rocking up to the pub in fishnets and booty shorts. Because of, you know,  flaws and because if I am basically not wearing pants, I’m notoriously, you know, self conscious. But I am totally ok with it. I think I rock them pretty damn well, actually. The thing I love about derby is that there is no perfect size or shape. There is no ideal derby body. Any body is a good body for derby. I’ve never felt more at home in mine.

4. Answers to questions
I hate to be put on the spot with questions like ‘what would you like for your birthday?’ and ‘is there anything you need?’, but derby gives me ready-made answers in times of need. I’d like new elbow pads. I need new wheels. New knee socks. Those cute sparkly shorts with my name on them. A gift voucher for a skate shop. That would be really handy, thanks for asking! (See also: ‘what are you doing on the weekend?’. Derby, duh.)

5. Ability to negotiate terrible amenities at music festivals
I’m never more grateful for derby stance than when I need to pee in a port-a-loo. True story.

‘Til next time,