Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Schlepping in a winter wonderland

Happy Melbournians on their way to work

Warning: Contains graphic descriptions of cold weather. Puss may want to turn away and have a crack at the crossword or something.

Winter has arrived at St Petersburg on the Yarra with a bang this week, with howling winds, driving rain, snow on the hills and temperatures hovering around the low 10s. The other day I was getting ready for work, pulling on the coat, hat and gloves while the cat was smirking at me from in front of the heater as if to say “well, good luck going out in that shit, human scum”.

So I threw her outside before I left.

Melbourne does winter well. It’s all rain-lashed laneways filled with people in big black coats, hurrying into pubs with open fires, discussing Kant and footy over hearty stews and roasts.

The city never looks better in winter, the cold light highlighting the mixture of modern and neo-gothic architecture scattered across the inner city, rain pelting down on the tram windows.

Some years ago I was covering the launch of a new tourism campaign for Aunty. The theme was “Melbourne in winter” and consisted of an impossibly glam couple dressed in black, hopping from fabulous restaurant to fabulous bar.

The tag line was “Melbourne in winter. Everything you expect – only much, much cooler”.

Fuck that was a clever ad.


wari lasi said...

I've done a few Melbourne winters and you can have them. I refer to my previous post about living in the tropics. I'm in Rabaul (well Kokopo really) today and it's a very pleasant 29 degrees, the sun is shining and the world is a beautiful place. If you ignore the fucking volcano that is ...

Ramon, do have some Jewish blood in you? Kvetching the other day, schlepping today. Or like me, did you pick up some Yiddish from Jewish friends?

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

I'm 99 per cent Catholic (hi catlick), but I've got a lot of Jewish friends.

It's also a very good language for insulting people.

Boogeyman said...

Rain in winter is suckful. You get wet, then you get even colder. Rain should stick to summer where it belongs.

You weren't the one responsible for that ad with the woman and the big ball of wool in Melbourne, were you Ramon? If so, you really should have included Kitten Kong lurking down one of those quaint little laneways.

I'm 99 per cent Catholic

Which part is 'other'?

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Oh, I didn't do the ad. Boogey, I was just covering it for the news but I agree, having Kitten Kong would have been ace.

Don't know what the other one per cent is - Anglican or some boring shit like that.

Boogeyman said...

Ramon, do have some Jewish blood in you? Kvetching the other day, schlepping today. Or like me, did you pick up some Yiddish from Jewish friends?

Anyone can speak yiddish. Just replace the 's' sound with 'sch', begin random other verbs with 'kv', and punctuate your speech with occasional 'yii'-s.

Even as I type this I'm twirling my overgrown sideburns into shirley temple curls. Aiyeee.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Dos ze ikh dos ershte mol! Boogey.

Fad MD said...

At least it wasn't that stupid fucking "Run Rabbit Run" tourism ad for the Yarra Valley.

They still haven't found the bodies from what that ad made me do.

Fad MD said...

Oh and winter here is pretty mild- 29-31C. The typhoons are fun though.

I do actually miss the change in seasons, especially in Canberra where Spring and Autumn are the best times of year.

Boogeyman said...

Dos ze ikh dos ershte mol! Boogey.

Shtek arayn, Ramon.

Puss In Boots said...

Wari and Fad - you both suck.

It was 6 degrees when I left for work the other day. I had 3 layers on and I was still cold.

Boogeyman said...

Honestly, I don't know what part of Brisbane you live in, Puss. Do we have a sub-arctic suburban zone I'm not aware of? Certainly it's been cool these last few days, but I still find it difficult to justify a heavy coat.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Puss lives in Brisbane, a small town on the outskirts of Minsk.

Puss In Boots said...

I start work at 6.30, so I suspect it's colder then than the usual 8.30 everyone else starts at, Boogey.

Plus, I just can't deal with the cold. It's well documented I require at least one jacket once the temperature dips below 25 degrees. Under 10 and I am thoroughly miserable.

Boogeyman said...

Ramon, is that anywhere near Woodridge?

Puss In Boots said...

Are you insinuating I live near Woodridge, Boogey? Ugh!

Boogeyman said...

No no, I was asking if Minsk is near Woodridge.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Minsk is the capital of Belarus and is famous for its number of beautiful cathedrals.

What about Woodridge?

Boogeyman said...

Woodridge is the capital of Logan, and is famous for its number of beautiful BWS stores.

Take that, Minsk!

Perseus said...

The way I see it, Brisbane is actually a small town on the outskirts of Sydney.

You're right Ramon. Melbourne in winter (and autumn) is beautiful. The most romantic moment of my life was walking from my car to The Black Cat in the evening winter rain, huddled under an umbrella with a girl who I later that night kissed for the first time.

The lights were on, the trams were dinging... a coffee was on the way.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

"I walked two miles through Melbourne rain

I could have walked ten more

When I first loved your ma"

Somehow "I walked two miles through a mild Brisbane spring with a light breeze" just doesn't have the same ring.

Boogeyman said...

huddled under an umbrella with a girl who I later that night kissed for the first time.

This was a) your first kiss with that girl, b) your first kiss with anyone, or c) your first kiss with the umbrella?

And if so, did you get to third base with the brolly?

Perseus said...

Pick me up on my grammar one more time and you'll be picking yourself up off the floor.

(That's what my mum said to me when I was 13 and corrected her).

Besides, if I pashed the brolly, I would have said 'which' not 'who'.


It's too sweaty to be romantic in Brisbane.

Boogeyman said...

You're supposed to get sweaty when you get romantic.

Unless you're pursuing one of them starchy Victorian romances.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

We starchy Victorians are far too refined to get sweaty, Boogey.

Perseus said...

Winchester from M*A*S*H:

"A, I don't sweat, I perspire, and B, I don't perspire."

You can get sweaty when you get sexy, Boogey, but you don't want your paramour to be sweatin' on your date at the art gallery, surely.

(For the Brisbanites: 'Art galleries' are places where 'art' is displayed for public viewing. You can look them up on 'the internet' which I believe you have access to now)

Boogeyman said...

Mr Insertnamehere sir, we northerners may seem somewhat uncouth to you big-city folk, but I doth declare you to speak with too much guile and too little frankness.

Was it not during the summer only just past that you of the south were sweating under 40 degree heat, while we of the north were taking great comfort in the delightfully mild 30 degree warmth and tropical storms that frequent these parts?

Mr Perseus, indeed we can use the internet anytime we feel inclined to look up pictures of naked children, jesus in a vat of piss, and hanging dead horses, rather than visit these 'art galleries' you speak of.

Also, Tropic of Cancer was not set in a sub-arctic city for very good reason. Now good day, sir!

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Cold weather increases the brainingness.

Well known fact.

Now good day to you, sir!

miss-lithi said...

Oh blah blah blah. Try wading through snowdrifts up to your butts and battling below zero Farenheit temperatures. Here it's never officially winter until the first significant snowfall sends every fuckwit driver into the ditch.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Yeah, good point Lithi.

That does rather put it in perspective.

Desci said...

Great post, INH. Fuck I love winter. Anything above 25 degrees makes me stabby. There's just no point to heat like that. Unless you enjoy the outdoors, ugh.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Dess, the sweaty goth look is never a good look.

Puss In Boots said...

I agree, Desci. Outdoors suck. Someone tried to convince me to exercise outdoors today. I told them I only go outdoors to go from one building to the next.

Desci said...

INH: Brisbane goths stink, for the most part. Well, the baby bats do, because they've not yet worked out how to do black in the tropics.

And Puss, at my old job it basically went thus:

Co-worker: 'Hey! Let's have lunch outside today!'
Me: 'You mean, outdoors? Eating our food outdoors with the wind and flies and burning sun and whatnot?'
Co-worker: Yeah!
Me: ...why?

Boogeyman said...

Brisbane goths stink, for the most part. Well, the baby bats do, because they've not yet worked out how to do black in the tropics.

Plus, goths in hypercolour t-shirts, stubbies and thongs just don't look quite right, really.

Tom Gaylord said...

I'm in the middle of Summer here in Ireland and it looks like Melbourne. There is a monsoon outside trying to kill me.

Puss In Boots said...

Yep, that's why I hate outdoors too, Desci. I am a firm believer we evolved to living indoors for a reason. Nature is nice to look at from a window, but I don't want to be in it.

And grass is deceptive anyway. It looks so nice and soft and lush when it's actually dirty and prickly and full of bugs.

Desci said...

Boogey, when I went to Qld most recently, I wore what I usually wear in summer here, despite the warnings of my cousin. And it was fucking boiling. Stupid humidity.

And you can to goth in tropical temperatures, you just can't be as fancy. And cybergoths ave to swap PVC for cotton, which still works.

And Puss, WORD on grass.

catlick said...

Jesuits rule. Ramon, dance around all you like, but you're probably a "cultural catholic". I bet it's going to be in our mitochondria. Like the Jews.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Ahh, the Jesuits.

AKA "God's paratroopers".

catlick said...

Are they doing security for the Pope's visit? And, how do we reconcile the invocation of "God Wins Law" [sic] with a Brown Shirt Pontiff?

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Don't joke about the Jesuits, catlick.

They'll have you on the ground, begging for God's mercy, faster than you can say "Hail Mary, full of grace. Blessed art thou among women."

catlick said...

Mary, she a sistah!

shitbmxrider said...

I too love Melbourne in winter..

Summer too, even when hot, its still a better hot than that cunt of a state called Queensland produces..

Want to see a angry, easily-upset shitbmxrider? Send me to Queensland any time from October to April, and thats what you get.

Bloody cunt of a state.