Sunday, December 20, 2009

animal noses

April and her people came round last night and it was not long before the animal noses were out in force. April took to this one and so this morning when I dropped around the things they'd left behind I included it in the stuff. Not just because she wears it well but also - I'll edit this out on your 21st birthday April - because I'm pretty sure she blew a lot of snot into it while she was wearing it, or at least made a noise like that was what was happening.
Anyway so I dropped it round and as I was going she said David, you've left your thing. And I said you can have it. And there was a pause, and she said 'But I don't want it!'
Oh, I guess you had to be there. I can't think of a way of making this an entertaining story. Good pic though.

Friday, December 04, 2009

the changes

I remember this show when it was first screened, I found it compelling.
It makes me sentimental for the past (70s Luddism) and of course the future (Tony Abbott PM).

See this and ponder a dystopia where people with fanatical devotions to particular tv series or what have you are regarded with fear and loathing by hysterical common people. I'd watch it.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

ricky gervais is funny but...

What's with his awful podcasts? What is going on? He and his mates generate this rambling, poxy sub-Derek and Clive nonsense, and it's horrible to listen to not just because it's horrible, but also because RG periodically erupts in this animalistic screech laughter which makes all thinking people wince. In fact, that is pretty much his contribution, I suppose sometimes he gets the ball rolling but otherwise it's down to Karl and Stephen to be funny around him. And now, apparently, he's pushing out these so-called audiobooks along the lines of 'The Ricky Gervais Guide To...' which is just him putting down these other people in a weird way. It doesn't work, it's a train wreck, as opposed to a bus or laundry van pedestrian incident. That said, I am really looking forward to seeing The Invention of Lying.


under a bus

For a long time now people have been using falling under a bus as a convenient way of representing mundane, random death. I don't want to get all philosophical but why a bus? In Melbourne we tend to see trams as the people mover in streets, though you hear a lot more of people falling under trains and dying, than you do under trams, for some reason. Of course the most common transport-related cause of death is car accidents, but for some reason these seem more gruesome and 'that's horrible' than falling under a bus, though most of us can expect on present indicators to die prolongedly in drawn-out and miserable care institutions. Is there something vaguely comforting about falling under a bus? Does one think of Big Ears driving the bus full of cotton-reel people, and it's only the Mayor of Toytown who's hit, and he just gets a red mark on his forehead?

Usually falling under a bus is summoned by people who generally indulge in thoughtless, risky self-harming behaviour eg smoking, as 'oh well, I could die from lung or throat or some other cancer, but I could fall under a bus, so...' (the 'so...' meaning, 'The randomness of the world means I refuse to partake in any consideration of what, all other things being equal, the likely outcome of my behaviour will be.') But I have also in work scenarios had it suggested to me that I keep various files and other research materials user-friendly in case I fall under a bus. Strangely, I did feel this was a pretty benign way of putting it, and I wouldn't have felt that way if instead it was suggested I might have been garrotted or fall off a tall building.

So what exactly is so great about falling under a bus?

Saturday, November 21, 2009

this really happened.

This is how he was sitting. With both his front legs hanging down. They are not touching the floor.

Monday, November 16, 2009

ragin' full onn

Big weekend involved two ‘gigs’ (as I never call them, if only out of respect to my friend Gig, and of course the family gig and pony from the auld days of pique-niques to Peter Rabbit’s house). Friday night was Beaches/ The Twerps at the Abruzzo Club. The AC was a great venue (middle-aged grim bouncers notwithstanding) but the sound was flippin’ terrible. Or to rephrase, it was an interesting and engaging sound – like distorted synthesisers at loud volume and it was the kind of loud volume and noise where you could hear all kinds of other things in it that you knew weren’t there – but there was not a synthesiser in sight. So I guess whatever was being played, faulty and overstressed audio technology was making its own interpretations. It was crowded and OK. Last night was royalchord at the Toff in Town which was pretty good, though perhaps a little quiet. There were a few newies (including one short, accapella) which was fine also the excellent ELO cover. I had a good time and was very funny.

Saturday night was Shane’s 37th birthday, marking 13, 514 days of Shane, not much really. There was a lot of whiskey around but I didn’t overdo it. I did confirm my adherence to Primitive Methodism though. Then I discovered (this morning) that Primitive Methodism is not, as I imagined, some kind of amish style but in fact a much more boisterous and democratic Methodism. I can’t go for that, as Hall and Oates sang when they first heard about Primitive Methodism. No can do. I want a kind of grim Methodism where those-who-would-dance have their achilles tendons severed by pastors and the End of Days is calculated in studiously typeset charts and grids.

Inbetween was spent rehearsing for this new Cannanes record and also a long conversation with an amateur (I mean, god bless ‘em) historian who is writing a community health centre history and who also happens to be locally famous musically but let’s not go there.

Anyway I completed the weekend tireder than I was on Friday, and that is rare, and in fact quite bad. I feel pretty crappy this morning and I don’t know how fine the day is going to be overall.

By the way I failed to mention a few days ago we went an’ saw 2012 which is non-campily conservative in its narrative but has what we want, amazing scenes of mass destruction of urban areas. It is true this is probably 10%, at the most, of what is essentially a pretty overlong film. It is a pity also that the grand trek/epic destruction was put to use as a device to cleanse humanity of all the slightly problematic characters (death by drowning, for instance, is god’s punishment for those who might augment their breasts surgically); I don’t care for that as a subtext, or any of the other subtexts (eg that John Cusack’s characters’ kids were called Noah and Lily; i.e. two floaters, one active, one passive). Anyway I am looking forward to seeing Prime Mover (being a very big David Caesar fan ‘n that). I wish it was on at the Westgarth though as there seems little option but to see it at the Nova. And that’s no fun. The Nova is a place where all the cinemas are tiny and the audiences elitist little bitches. Their computer projectionists always play the wrong films and whinge whinge. I would rather go to see it at Knox or Southland. Or the Westgarth, obviously, or our local Hoyts, but as the poor people say, ‘that ain’t goanna happen’.

I have a vague feeling Edward Woodward may be unwell.

scenes from the lemon wars

launceston memoreez

This is a more auspicious occasion than I appreciated until I thought about it one second ago; it really is the last gasp of my travels across the landscape looking at small civic buildings for the project I was first employed on 3½ years ago. The book is being written, the MS due at the end of the year, and indeed this is much less a journey to Launceston to trawl for places and facilities, and much more an archive visit to pick up some images and maybe a few extra good ideas to slap the face of the various chapters I’ve been working on (libraries, kindergartens, community centres – all co-authored with respected colleagues). So, even though I am getting a hire car it’s at least as much a pragmatic response to the reality that Launceston airport is far from Launceston, and that taxis to and from in two days, plus the little bit of journeying I am likely to do this evening to check up on the current status of any of the places I find out about today, will add up to pretty much the same kind of price as the tiny Getz (later: no, it was a less-than-tiny Tiida) I will be driving for brief periods of the day.

I would feel overall better about this whole shebang if the last few days/nights of extreme heat hadn’t been so wearying. It is very hard to get to sleep in a heatwave and it’s also hard to cope with when you know that it’ll probably be over in a few days and back to some normal November weather, so we don’t (for instance) put away the warm clothes just yet, etc. Repulsively last night the iced water I had by the bed had seemingly become higher than body temperature by about 2 am though this can’t be right. Nevertheless it was a little bit like what drinking vomit might be like.

So it’s good to be going to Launceston where it is predicted to be only mid-20s (whereas Melbourne today is going to be, I gather, low 30s). I anticipate a few hours in the Museum archives (local history collection), a few hours in the library archives (er… local history collection), and maybe a couple of hours of field work, then an appropriate sleep in the ‘heritage accommodation’ I have obtained for myself. I am then going to repeat most of the activities of today, tomorrow, mainly because the museum archives are only open to the public for three hours of the day, for some reason.

Other complaints aside from hot weather: my right wrist is very stiff and quite sore, perhaps even a little swollen. I may die of it. Also, this Hudsons coffee is quite watery.

Later: Well I dithered around for quite some time, taking wrong turns and going to the wrong place (i.e. the old museum site when I should have been going to the new, but I had no idea) and trying to circumnavigate all the one way streets, difficult considering for some reason as soon as I arrived in the CBD my orientation went 90 degrees counterclockwise, if you know what I mean. I kept thinking I was travelling east when I was , in fact, travelling north and I still haven’t quite got the hang of it in my mind. I saw the ‘no jobs on a dead island’ banners suspended from what I since discovered is something to do with Gunns and its pulp milling activities, but didn’t realise this was a new thing until I heard about it on the news. Another protest, somewhat obscure:

It is an exceedingly pleasant day in Launie today and I have said it before but I suppose I have to say it once more: I really love Launie, it’s one of those amazing towns where half of it is up an unfeasible hillside and there are far, far, too many (i.e. more than zero) men with big fat bellies and ZZTop beards (you rise to the top in this social strata particularly effectively if you got a bald head too), and as I write additionally a shit of a two-year old pounding around yelling at people. His name seems to be Lyn so I reckon his parents got everything they asked for.

I am still tired but I am going to take the archivist’s advice and travel to Lilydale this afternoon, checking out the memorial hall etc. He said it was only 20 minutes’ drive north, but considering my proclivity for wrong turns I will probably end up taking – ooh – 30 minutes.

Later: I did that, and it worked, so I was pretty happy. It was really worth doing actually. Lilydale seemed like a very pleasant small town. It has an ancient shop, too, which is weird. I was told this and like you I thought, an ancient shop? But well, what can I say. That’s what it is.

I am going to rest now, as I am very tired. This room is an oddity. I suppose it suits me.

Next day: not a bad sleep though I did wake at 3:18 for a brief period. The B&B I was staying in, Windmill Hill Lodge, is to be highly recommended and if you go there you will see my name in the guest book, recommending it as ‘excellent!’. Being a B&B they not only supply B but also B, and the B in this case was a deluxe affair riddled with things they specialise in and manufacture on the premises, various stewed figs and rhubarb and then jams they also make and I was told they make their own bread, though I didn’t sample either of these. I was happy with porridge, some cardamom tea (I’d never tried that before and I liked it) and while I was there a small Burmese (?) came through the window which was obviously a drama for the proprietor as it was a H&S issue I am sure but it was a nice cat and I certainly wasn’t outraged.

This morning I encountered what I have to say was surely the most absurd intersection in Australia – I can’t even conceive of a more ridiculous one – on a highway along the river, where you can only turn right when the cars to your right have finished turning left in front of you, which they clearly never would. This was so ridiculous and unlikely to be resolved within an hour or two I quickly figured I had two options – to reverse (this was doable, there was no-one behind me, everyone else in Launceston obviously knew this was an impossible route) or to make an illegal (I assume) left turn into the road I had wanted to turn right onto, and find some place to do a uey. I did this finally it was a little dodgy.

One thing I always like to do in Launceston is visit the Country Women’s Association of Tasmania shop, however, my sense of direction in Launie is if anything getting worse and I was finding it extremely hard to figure out where this place was. I mean, I had been there many times before but the more I find my way around, the less I remember my original orientation (which as I have already explained is crap anyway). So I called directory assistance (‘You’re looking for Taxis Combined Services Launceston – right?’) and got their number. When I called I could not imagine a more suspicious and belligerent conversant, a woman who was unaware of the term ‘street address’ and actually asked who was calling. I suppose this could have been an opportunity to turn hatred into friendship but instead I just said ‘a customer’ and she said thank you and hung up.

I guess when I come to towns like this (is there a town like this?) I throw my weight around a little and upset the locals with my self-importance. Every response I get from them seems to me to be bizarre and small-town-David-Lynchian, but it’s probably not, or even if it is, it’s only a miniscule per cent of the population I am dealing with.

There is probably also some residual unhappiness about the fact that Launcestrians founded Melbourne and Melbourne doesn’t remember. Hence the bizarre billboard of a man floating on an enormous rubik’s cube in the mist, for whom a Melbournian could not possibly provide a solution. I have to admit, being from Melbourne this ad makes entirely no sense to me whatsoever, and I most definitely would have no answer for this person. Maybe the Launcestonians could tell me why the only AM radio I can pick up in Launceston is a very staticky and fuzzy (Melbourne-broadcast) Radio National and 774 Melbourne. I guess this is one of those things where you don’t have time to figure it out, you don’t know anyone local who can tell you, and you are going back in a few hours anyway so it doesn’t matter, really.

At the airport, about ten minutes (???) from boarding: mocking me as fate so often does, very soon after writing the above I encountered, at the Launceston Library, a man older than me who had never used a photocopier before (that said, unlike every other person who ever used a photocopier for the first time, he got it right first time, even though he was trying a tricky manoeuvre that involved folding part of a page over to get the beginning of an article on the same page as its bulk).

I saw Gunns propaganda in an op shop which was basically a spiel about Gunns’ caring management of forests sandwiched between some bits and bobs about wildlife. Nearby – for free, but I didn’t avail myself – was an 80s book for kids about AIDS and why homosexuals deserve it (but people who caught it via blood transfusions just got in the line of fire). That particular op shop was quite amazing, actually. Now I can’t even remember where it is and that’s good because you’d just go there and clean the sucker out. It was a Mission Shop, which is the brand of a heck of a lot of op shops in Launceston, and they are huge!!! One very much got the idea that in Launceston a lot of old people die and someone has to throw out their stuff, and someone else prices it either chuckling to themselves about how much the mainlanders would pay for this junk, or just prices it, randomly, either way, I know that if I had five hundred dollars and the return fair on the ferry, and five free days and a wish to propagate junk to the wider world, I could drive down there from Melbourne and fill up the stationwagon with the geegaws and chattels of a bygone age there and then for almost nothing and come back to the mainland and supply idiots with rubbish to my profit. I’m sure of it. The material was all pretty much useless and one felt a bit dirty hanging around it a long time. Crockery and canisters and utensils and so on. Pretty extraordinary. Even the AIDS book had camp value I reckon I’d stick a tenner on that. The first word in the index was ‘anal opening’.

On returning, I would like to affirm that I am a solid fan of Launceston, and I find it a most engaging city. There is clearly much to the Launcestacian experience that I have not quite got on top of and I wonder if I ever would, even if I moved there tomorrow. Probably not. It’s one of those huon things – you need to always have been there to understand it (like being a white South African or even perhaps a white Australian) and then, of course, you can’t understand it at all really.

Friday, November 13, 2009

launceston strangeness

I am floating on an enormous, useless (because all the sides are the same colour, though it is at least keeping me buoyant on the cloud/dry ice/ mist water on which I float) rubik's cube. Sadly its colour is leeching out into the ether and my trousers have shrunk and my right foot has come off. Ah! Here is a man, emerging from the mist and smiling. Hopefully he will retrieve my spaghetti pot. Solved. Without talking to anyone in Melbourne.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

going home last week

Sometimes going home I take the 542 bus from Glenroy to Jacana. Particularly if I have walked to Glenroy in the morning in which case I only buy a zone 1. So then I have to get off somewhere and buy a zone two to progress, and so I may as well switch to the bus which gets me closer to home anyway.
This is a delightful piece of history, which must date from the 1980s, probably the early 1980s, perhaps even the late 1970s. No-one talks about Meadow Fair anymore, and the bus actually goes to Roxburgh Park.

One of the things that confuses all and sundry at the busstop at G'roy is that whichever way the buses are ultimately going - Oak Park in the south or Roxy Park in the north - the buses line up at the bus stop facing the same direction. The fact that the busdrivers often forget to put the appropriate destination on the front just adds to the fun. This is the arse of an Oak Park bus, advertising a film I suspect I will never willingly see.


My bus. And...

The 'meadow fair' just near home, at which point the sun came out, and a fairy asked to be my friend on a rainbow.

Friday, October 30, 2009

look around you

We got series 2 of Look Around You on DVD. I laughed so much it hurt and I wanted it to stop. That hasn't happened in over a decade. This was the bit that specifically got me the most:

Here's the second one which was just on the DVD I think not in the show itself.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

dub t f?

I must say when I first spied these vinyl LPs, most of them smashed up a bit, nailed to a board in the usual rubbish-to-be-collected pile out the front of my workplace, my first (primal) thought was 'It's a trap'. The only album I might have wanted, Kate Bush's The Kick Inside, was in pieces.* Some of the others were interestingly (?) those older, not graphite still vinyl but more brittle, less flexible LPs of the early 60s, classical labels. I didn't examine too closely in case someone hungry had a crossbow levelled at me.

* But I don't want it without a cover anyway. If I found it in the street, intact, or in an op shop for 50c - $5, I'd take it home.

Friday, October 23, 2009

march of progress II

House about to be demolished to make way for six units, Glenroy

from yesterday 22 october

‘What a day it’s been need to rest my head. Time for a [juice? absinthe? can't remember] no, milk it instead.’ Was that really an ad that was on television? For some reason it is embedded in my mind and I don’t think I made it up. I might have though. But then there is the coda, ‘what’d I say… I said milk it instead.’ That’s pretty compelling. Unfortunately it's not on youtube.

I am of the generation thoroughly turned off milk by the provision of free milk to primary schools which was delivered and left outside the door, in the sun, to turn rancid within a few hours, and to then be drunk by children who knew the off product as ‘milk’. That was how it worked. We were being given a healthy food in case our parents did not provide it for us.

At primary school also we had Miss Chivers (later it was funny, that her name could be said ‘mischievous’). She would come round to us as we sat in booth arrangements at the north side of the school building and put a smiley face in sauce on our pies. Today I would rather die than eat a meat pie. I could be tortured by being made to drink milk I suppose and would bear it.

One day, because of what I now understand to be an inequitable situation through which she was undertaking a strenuous degree while caring for two small children, as was my mother also I suppose come to think of it, the woman who was meant to pick me up from primary school forgot to do so. I was left waiting at the school with nowhere to go. I hung around for a long time (now, I have compounded this in my memory with other fearsome things that happened at the school but which probably didn’t happen that specific afternoon, like a bully whose name was John showing me a box of matches and threatening to set me on fire). There were two elderly (?) people who were caretakers at the school who somehow saw that I had not been taken care of who for some reason contacted the fire brigade and a teenage girl, a daughter of a fireman, took me home. How she knew where I lived I don’t know; I lived far too far away from the school to walk back myself, it was too far really for me to walk with someone else, however much of a responsible person they may have been.

What I now think is funny is that the caretaker couple apparently called the fire brigade, presumably not 000 but just rang the station. Maybe there was some other kind of arrangement. I will never know. They are dead now without a doubt, unless they were actually in their thirties and just seemed really old (no, they were old). I suppose that was about 37 years ago. I haven’t forgotten it yet.

Meanwhile, as I’m jumping around (but there is a connection: PA went to the same primary school as I did, a mere 25 years earlier) is this the last year we’ll be hearing Philip Adams and/on Late Night Live on Radio National do you think? Since I got my ipod I have been listening to more and more LNL, in fact for the first time probably – given that I commute 10-15 hours a week at least – I have been listening to pretty much 4-5 hours of LNL, the full contingent, each week. I pick and choose with the ‘classic’ show on Fridays, I’m ambivalent about that, but I particularly enjoy PA’s discussions with Bruce Shapiro and some of his other regulars (Laura Tingle is particularly good value I think, PA is a little nervous around Christian Kerr I would say and that translates to affect my enjoyment of their discussions). Anyway, when I do listen to classic LNL on Fridays, which is usually shows from earlier this decade or late last, I feel that the PA of not-that-distant yesteryear is a much sharper and less fusty man. In the last year he’s repeated himself a lot, seemed vague, and there are a lot of tech errors (on Tuesday’s show for instance he twice started talking without the microphone on; the second time, he acknowledged having pushed the wrong button).

Hey who knows maybe it’s not age, maybe there are other things involved. I don’t want him to go, because while when he’s bad he’s dreadful, I like him being there and I’ve been enjoying him a lot lately. There aren’t too many nightly talk shows that actually, literally, teach you something every time (even if the something is only ‘there are people who concern themselves with that kind of junk!?’). So I don’t think it’s time to end Philip, just wondering if there’s a succession plan.

Speaking of old crusties, Whatever Works is actually a really funny film, at least, I laughed seven times (yes, I counted, because I thought there was a chance I might not at all and when I did in the first few minutes when LD started talking to the camera to the consternation of his cronies, thought it was time to start gauging). It’s extraordinary to imagine that WA wrote this script in the early 70s; it hardly seems to fit with, say, Annie Hall or Manhattan, I started writing some meandering wonderings about zeitgeistification there but I stopped as it was unformed and perhaps even unformable. There is something frustrating about WA in the last, say, 10-15 years, I first noticed it with the film which if I recall correctly was entitled Shadows and Fog, where the dialogue sometimes gets so stylised (in a mundane way), stilted and convoluted you feel like you’re at a first play reading or listening to a Red House Painters song. But at the same time if you can relax and ease into it, it can be really enjoyable. I assumed Larry David would be a really crappy actor but he wasn’t, if it was the first time I’d seen him I’d say, yes, that guy was actually perfect for the part and did it really well. I won’t go so far as to say he is a brilliant actor, because he was still playing the character he played in CYE (i.e. something that is presumably an amplified version of an aspect of himself) but he was great here. Everyone else was good too. There was one confusing bit where I’m sure there was a description of LD’s mother in law as having a prolific range of sexual exploits starting with her affair with Leon and graduating to his friend the art dealer, but then we see her only having a relationship with both those men. I mean it’s not impossible that she would be living in the ménage a trios and also having other affairs, but in a film where so much is spelt out, why was this confusion left in?

Today it is warm and I thought this is about the last chance I will have to wear that 4 seasons yellow nylon shirt, without having to take it off about half an hour later and scrub it and myself. So I am. It’s a pretty decent shirt, very sharp lines, you know, lines on it. I can’t believe I am still using this laptop (I’m writing on the train – I should be marking student essays – and I will – very soon – as soon as I get this important stuff off my chest). The laptop keys are so worn that the c, the v, the m and the n are worn off. Oddly I find that if I am looking at them I have no idea what these keys are but of course when I am touch typing it’s fine (actually I suppose that’s not so strange).

I am listening to Michael Hurley on the ipod now, he is always enjoyable, that’s not true, almost always. I do like his work though. A very good sense of melody, more than most of those folk-country people. I suppose at a pinch I could put him in the same box as Jonathan Richman – a putative naïve who sometimes just happens to break out of that mould for affect; plays with popular music (including his own prior excursions within it).

If I learnt to play guitar and wrote songs, I could have a whole new musical career from which all my prior exploits in musical performance would seem like a dry run. I mean, I would be really excellent at it, and would quickly develop a wide fanbase. But I can’t be bothered.

There’s a cool band called Manchester Mourning (too bad about their name) who have a cool EP out which I’ve been listening to a lot. Funnily though when I put it on my ipod gracenote thought it was by a band called Fantastic Planet and gave the songs other titles. I suppose this happens from time to time. Now I don’t know what the songs are called. The one I’m listening to now is called ‘Fellin Lucky’ and yes the ‘Fellin’ is [sic].

What do you think of myki. I see they’re trying to get the machines operational at the moment, while there are problems with people being overcharged in other parts of Victoria. Well, could anything be worse than metcard? That’s probably the important question. Metcard has been a frustrating piece of crap since it began, and we all know it was only brought in in the first place because the tender was half the price of all the others. The product was always extremely poor and it should never have been allowed to continue. If I wasn’t so mellow I’d make a big long list of all the metcard travesties I’ve been party to or heard about. Just one: the time my weekly card got stuck in a machine about a day into its tenure and metcard refused to refund the money until I provided a receipt, which incidentally would only have proved that I bought a weekly metcard, not that it had been stuck in a machine. And another: the bollocks about how metcard validations help metlink to plan new timetables. And a third: those foul ads about how if you havne’t paid your fare you should offer to mow other people on the tram’s lawn, because they’re funding you. I mean if we start going down that road in a society where services are provided via tax contributions we’ll never stop, and we’ll crash at a bend in the road, where no-one will be able to rescue us. Still, myki seems relatively crap, by which I mean relative to other things, not necessarily relative to metcard, I guess we’ll (a) see and (b) be stuck with it whatever happens. Why payment for these things are never tied to objective measures I don’t know – actually, I do, it’s because state governments find it too hard to admit they’ve made errors. I understand that.

Hey I’m looking forward to Rush tonight. As usual. Last week’s episode at Trinity College was fine, I loved the people being shot with arrows. I don’t care strongly about the Shannon-Josh story though, particularly the idea that something good will come from that rich prick being killed with an arrow – that Shannon will help Josh get over his tragic outlook. Blah.

Today I got my glasses, they’re only for reading so don’t expect to see me wearing them unless you walk in on me reading. I needed them today though at Melbourne Central station when I thought I saw ‘Waiting to meet Bruce Chatwin’ on a girl’s t-shirt. It was actually ‘Prince Charming’ she was waiting to meet, though I think either way she has a wait, as they’re both pretty much dead men.

Can I suggest playing both embedded youtube clips in this post and the Craven Fops one below simultaneously, for a grouse result.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Charlie watching me pay more attention than she thinks I should to Millie:

Saturday, October 17, 2009

march of progress

Everyone's demolishing or rebuilding their houses in Jacana these days.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Every thousand years two beagles and a small, neurotic grey cat line up in perfect formation. This was that moment.

this is a lazy cat

He is so lazy he can't be bothered lying down properly; he is only lying down at the back. True.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

the news

(I wrote this on Friday)

Today’s paper was full of ghastly things, and I don’t just mean horror quake/tsunamis in Samoa and Indonesia, etc, but also the news that Hey Hey it's Saturday might be back for good (i.e. for evil). The Age’s education reporter Miki Perkins says on page 3 that ‘Over the next five years a quarter of senior academics will retire and those who remain will work longer hours than their international colleagues, according to a study to be released today at Melbourne University.’ I look back to a decade ago when I, just starting on my academic career, was told that ‘the old people’ would soon be retiring. Those bastards never go anywhere (some of them are lovely bastards, too, by the way though of course some are just bastards).Also I see Jon Stevens is responding badly to recent heart surgery. It will be interesting to see if JS’ reputation undergoes any kind of resuscitation in the light of this news. Personally I like him, and I think that the casting of him as a music industry tart is quite unfair, not just considering the fact that either everyone in the music industry is a tart or everyone isn’t. I wouldn’t have joined INXS myself, and I think INXS are rather tasteless in their decision, taken poorly every day, to continue post-Hutchence. But Stevens is a decent bloke as far as I can tell. I suppose on the other hand it is nonsensical and foul for me to spend this much column inches on someone who hasn’t even died, and just passingly remarking on thousands who did, violently and horribly, a few days ago in Australia’s near neighbourhood. Perspective. It’s hard to come by at this point. I am en route to visiting a friend in hospital with cancer. One of my students died, apparently by his own hand, a few days ago.