Saturday, October 22, 2005

The Beatles

Watching the Beatles anthology on DVD.

Missing what John would have said about the world we live in today. remembering New York 1989 and Central Park, Strawberry Fields, Imagine. John was witty and cynical and a truth teller and looking back ... well, bagism, the long straggly hair, the naked Two Virgins album cover: this was all so honest & meant to shock us & move us away from fluffy image of populism to an understanding that there are bad things in the world and we bear some responsibility to influence the world for good.

Listening to Turn Brakes, Forever.

Monday, July 25, 2005

We don't know

On we don't say I don't know enough in the Guardian.

Empathy, the end not justifying the means, the grey uncertain areas and humility are the enemies of the fanatic and the fundamentalists.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

The Battle for the Ashes commences tomorrow

I hope England are competitive and the match goes to the fifth day and Warney gets 10 & Gilchrist a double century & Petersen a double century.

Unfortunately, John Howard will be attending.,15993,1530621,00.html

Friday, June 17, 2005

The Downing Street memo

The Iraq War still disgusts me.

The Downing Street Memo shows:

1) Bush wanted to go to War
2) Bush was fixing the intelligence to support his case
3) Plans for the chaotic aftermath were neglected

A web site with more memos and information can be found here.

Monday, June 13, 2005

The Chen Affair

Michael Duffy in the SMH on moral Confusion:

"The Chen affair has largely been framed as a balancing act between human rights and Australia's trade interests. But it's also a balancing act between the treatment of different social and ethnic types of refugee. The basic rule has been that poor Muslims come to Australia by boat and we lock them up (even though most are later proved to be genuine refugees) while wealthy Christians arrive by air and are allowed to live in the community while their claims are considered (even though most are later sent home).

The sight of Chen being treated with such concern by leading members of the Government is going to confuse a lot of ordinary people. There haven't been all that many Chinese refugees in the past decade, and the potential for category confusion is considerable. Some people might start wondering why we aren't locking up more illegals rather than fewer.

Possibly Howard's relative silence on the issue this week reflects an awareness of this that is not shared by some of his younger colleagues.

The new compassion in the Coalition for all refugees, not just Chen, raises some interesting questions.

Does it mean the toughness of the past was assumed? If so, what does it say about the moral seriousness of the Coalition - is the new compassion as false as the old severity?"

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Story idea - The grey itch

Mark Ruffalo on We Don't Live Here Anymore:

"Well, it's honest," he says of the film. "The way I see it, almost every interaction in a human being's life has some bittersweet shit in it. They have this thing called the grey itch. It's when a man - I think it's particular to men, although probably women have something similar - comes to the end of youth, or what your perception of your youth is. Which is really just the attainability of your dreams. There comes a point where there's so much road underneath you that you realise, 'I'll just never have that thing.' "

The narrator has it but Boris never loses it.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Life is not the Movies

Now I know why I am irrepressibly melancholy & none of my romantic relationships work. Because life is not like the Movies:

Alain de Botton:
"[On some movies, they are] enjoyable because they reflect our deep-seated wish for intense, conflict-free love, and irritating because we know these relationships to be untrue to genuine experience. In their lack of realism, the love scenes seem almost to deny us the chance of happiness in our own lives. They humiliate us with the gap they reveal between what we are likely to have tasted and the events on screen. They also leave us feeling sad. Our sadness won't be of the searing kind, more like a blend of joy and melancholy: joy at the happiness before us, melancholy at an awareness of how seldom we are sufficiently blessed to encounter anything of its kind. The flawless presentation of happiness on film can throw into perspective the mediocrity that surrounds it. We are reminded of how we would wish things always to be and of how incomplete our lives remains."

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Ant & Bz

So it has been a while since I visited Hong Kong.

In Hong Kong:

1) Maundy lives.
2) My cousin Dominique lives there too.

3) Ant & Bz & young Matisse live there too too.

Here's a picture of Ant & Bz in Eindhoven taken in 2002.


Peking Duck

Wow, it's nearly a year since I was in Hong Kong and then China with Mandy.


I can't believe how quickly time has flown and how many servings of Peking Duck we ate during our trip. I think in 15 days we had Peking Duck about 5 times!

Here is a man from Beijing with the strangest face.


Friday, June 03, 2005

My Top Ten Songs

Top Ten songs of all time:

1) The Smiths - How Soon is Now

Listening to this LP in the garage where Jerry was sleeping while we were living at Meadowvale Crescent.

2) New Order - Temptation

Just for the line 'I've never felt anything like this before' & the way its said.

Peter Brown: "TEMPTATION IS THE SOUND OF ADOLESCENCE and all it entails. It’s the happy, dumb accident when everything goes right and you think you’re invincible. It’s the sound of you going to a party, getting horrendously drunk and being as funny as you really think you are, walking home the girl you always dreamed about, then waking up the following morning and not having a hangover. "

3) Modern English - I Melt With You

Girlfriend back in 1984. When my hair was really boofy. And I thought these feelings could replicated forever with other increasingly more beautiful girls.

Molly Ringwald, that look you give. Pouting and superior.

4) Billy Bragg - A New England

Le Rox with Pat Welch in 1985. Sydney with Mike Black in 1998.

The independent pale and pasty, lonely & lost Engllish chap.

5) Tears for Fears/Gary Jules - Mad World

Dancing like the guy in the video in a very wonky way at a party at Lee Amundsens house.

Loneliness & sadness & rabbit suits.

6) Radiohead - Karma Police

Bangkok early 2000s.

7) Simon & Garfunkel - America

New York City 1989. Wellington Hotel. The Dakota building doormen.

8) Turin Brakes - Future Boy

Kim Yam Rd. A cigarette on the chair on the cobblestones outside.

9) Divine Comedy - Our Mutual Friend

To Borders.

10) The Jam - Going Underground

Richard Attwood's bowling shoes.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Reading & Listening to furry ears

I am currently reading Jonathan Coe's The CLosed Circle.

I am currently listening to:

  1. Bloc Party, Silent Alarm - there just a bunch of kids
  2. Moby, Hotel - he has an interesting journal.
  3. Morrisey, You are the Quarry - How soon is now?

Morrisey is still incredible.

I can't help thinking about rock/pop star as brand?

Monday, May 30, 2005

What has Australia become?

Christine Rau, Cornelia's sister in the Herald:

"In investigating Cornelia’s case, our eyes have been opened to another country, another Australia unrecognisable to most of us, where people deemed not worthy of our proper care are treated without respect.
The way she was mistreated by the federal government under the Migration Act is not unusual in detention centres. The only difference about Cornelia was that she happened to be an Australian resident, and that her situation came to public light.
Under the government’s current mandatory immigration detention system Canberra officials and state police officials act as judge, jury and jailer.
Confused and ill Australians who are suspected of not being Australians by a Canberra official can be summarily locked up. This cannot happen to those that are suspected of even the most serious criminal offence."

Also, there is an outcry against Schapelle Corby's conviction and sentence that is encouraging people to boycott Bali. This is misdirected as we should be equally outraged against the Australian airport, the Australian airline & Auustralian government.

Like Lindy Chamberlian in reverse.

This is Australia.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

In a society that was no community and devalued the person

"Well, for instance, what it means to be a man. In a city. In a century. In transition. In a mass. Transformed by science. Under organised power. Subject to tremendous controls. In a condition caused by mechanisation. After the late failure of radical hopes. In a society that was no community and devalued the person. Owing to the multiplied power of numbers which made the self negligible. Which spent military billions against foreign enemies but would not pay for order at home. Which permitted savagery and barbarism in its own great cities. At the same time, the pressure of human millions who have discovered what concerted efforts and thoughts can do. As megatons of water shape organisms on the ocean floor. As tides polish stones. As winds hollow cliffs ... "

From Saul Bellow's Herzog.

I quoted this on Margo Kingston's Web Diary.

Im becoming increasingly bored of the work I'm doing. My trainer says don't do anything drastic. Take incremental steps & make changes that way.

I am to passive, waiting for something to happen and thinking to much without the courage to act.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Saul Bellow RIP & Neptunes for Dim Sum & Memoris of Ostrich Feathers

Saul Bellow has died. He is being described as: Melancholic, a Jewish, immigrant, intellectual idealist. The Twain of the 20th century.

I love the stories in 'Him With His Foot in His Mouth'. I can see that book in the bookshelf at Middle Cove.

For lunch today, Dim Sum at Neptune's.

Neptune's would be interesting to write about:

Like a large school gym turned into a huge Chinese restaurant, about 50 years old. A large stage, red curtains, gold braid, , long ago one of Singapore's few, risque, bawdy, fleshpots, the copacabana of Singapore. Chinese girls in stringed sequins, feather boas and ostrich feathers. Dance floor parquetry.

Now around the outside of the dance floor, faded blue carpet, dragons carved into wooden chairs & table legs.

Dim Sum trolleys. Steam rising. Bamboo, soy sauce, lazy susan. fried yam. Hairy balls like hamsters babys deep fried.
Waitresses hump backed & pushing their trollyes along. Wheels creaky.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

It's raining in Singers

It's raining in Singers.
I am looking for signs of life. Thats why I bought them.

I bought 6 orchids over the weekend. My colleagues at my place of employment scoff and suggest they will attract mosquitos.

I am about to go to Spinelli's to buy a double skinny large mocha.

I am thinking about the slug that slithers out of Nakato's mouth in Kafka on the Shore. I am thinking that's inside me.

I am thinking that I am being hypnotised by TV, ads & the crap of everyday life.