Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Well done, those skinny, naked vegans.

And a big hello to the knuckle-heads at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) for doing what I had previously thought impossible – making me feel sorry for fashion designer and “personality” Alannah Hill.

For those coming in late, PETA in the past have;
* Claimed a spate of shark attacks were “revenge”*,
* Stated parents who fed their children meat were indulging in “child abuse”,
*Said people who bought animals from pet shops were guilty of “genocide”** and
* Nude up at every single protest, thus forcing the world to witness more skinny white vegan flesh than is recommended***

PETA – go away, just go away.

As Morrissey once said “that joke isn’t funny any more”

*Revenge for what, they don’t say. Maybe the sharks were forced to watch Jaws 3

** Or possibly “petocide”.

*** Recommended safe viewing level of skinny white vegan flesh is currently set at zero.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Yes, The Cake Was Awesome...

The Scupltress, who baked the cake, said, "It's all edible, even the sails. Oh, but not the pins. Watch out for them."

Some points.

* I spent three or so hours in a mild panic thinking that I had insulted Lewd Bob and/or his Missus. See, they turned up at the same time as about 15 other people, and I was opening presents and stuff, and I hadn't had a sip of a drink and in desperation I yelled out to Lewd Bob, "Can you please get me wine," and he gave me this strange look and was never seen or heard from again for the night. I discovered the next day there was a medical issue, which is no good, but until I got really really drunk, all I was concerned with was what I did to insult them.

* Of the bloggersphere, I had Kitten Wrangler and Chewy Justice (from the old TSSH gang), Desci and her fella, Melba and her fella, Cath and Mr. Subtle and thank god, they were all very patient with me making cameos at their table and then running off again. My sister badgered them for a bit. My sister is odd. I hope she didn't scare them. Julia Zemiro must have been in fine form on RockWiz cos Ramon failed to arrive.

* I told my niece to take photos of everyone. She took that literally, and took photos of everyone at the pub. There were over 40 photos of people I didn't know, and yet Dutch Nerd, Miss Artist and about ten other dear friends were not in any photo.

* Dutch Nerd was one of the girls I aimed to pickup. As mentioned last week, she had just split up and I was looking for some rebound action. She gave me a present with a card and the first line of the card said, "I want to instigate a love affair with you..." and I nearly fainted, but the sentence ended with, "...and Terry Pratchett." The present was a Pratchett book. I was about to start flirting but then, the guy she just split up with turned up (he's also in the extended group of friends) and they had some sort of tiff and she ended up leaving at 12 and so did he.

* One other girl I really like who is my ex Boss's daughter also planned to come, but ex Boss got dumped by his wife earlier in the week and so he didn't come, and nor did she because of turmoil in the family. The good news of her not coming is that she rang and suggested we go out next weekend, one on one. Fucking ace.

* Speaking of which, there were probably 20-30 people that didn't come. Some overseas, some ill, some don't like pubs and late nights... all of them have insisted on another social event with me. It's become a 40th Festival that will last for a month. So much for hating birthdays.

* Pub shut at 1pm. With the Mermaid heading the way, about 15 of us arrived at some night club. We made Mermaid coordinate with the door staff the entry of a large pack of middle-aged people, because she's hot. We all got in except one - my one hippy mate, who was the only sober one amongst us. They had a strict no-hippy rule. I even tried to bribe the doorguy $50 but no go. So we all left the place immediately and went to some other bar.

* That's when the pills kicked in. The rest is a blur. I do remember one mate proudly revealing his birthday present to be a gram of coke, but I just couldn't do it, so I made him give the coke to some of the chicks in our gang (including Mermaid) which he was happy to do. We ended up at some guy's house at 5am, and at 5.30am, I was sitting on a couch with Miss Artist, and we both agreed that we were too smashed to do anything, so I got in a taxi and went back to my hotel room alone.

* Went to the footy the next day to watch Richmond get SMASHED. Life is now back to normal, other than I got my new car. It's black.

Friday, June 26, 2009

I'm Betting Drugs

He may have been an awful human, but back when he was still black the kid could dance.

Vale, sort of.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The balloon theory of politics

Watching a political leader on the skids is a lot like watching a balloon deflate.

Sometimes the political authority slowly leaks from them, inch by inch, day by day, until there’s nothing left but a withered piece of plastic you can use to annoy the cat – much like Howard over the course of 2007.

Sometimes, it’s much more sudden, like popping a balloon with a pin – a short, sharp bang and bits of plastic flying everywhere.

Which brings us to Malcolm Turnbull.

For Malcolm that moment came on the evening of Monday, 22 June 2009 when the email he was using against Kruddy was exposed as a fake.

Whatever authority, whatever clout he had is gone.

The Labor Party knows it, the gallery knows it and judging by his performance in Parliament over the past couple of days, Turnbull knows it too.

He’s in the situation every spin-doctor dreads; where everyday you know there’s something new and unexpected looming up to whack you and you don’t know what it will be or where it will come from but you just know it’s going to be bad.

Very bad.

He’ll probably limp on until the next election as you would have to be stone-cold crazy* to take over this pack of shysters at this stage, but that’s about it.

But beyond the immediate issues is the damage done to the Turnbull brand.

There’s an internal whispering in the hearts of the punters about a leader who’s on the nose, something that always rankles whenever they see them on the tellie or hear them on the radio.

For Howard, towards the end, it was “children overboard”. For Turnbull, from now until he shuffles of this melancholy scene, it will be “utegate”.

*Or Tony Abbott.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Historic hottie

Well, I've been sitting back as Perseus, Squib and Bob have been banging away with posts comparing various hotties, beardies and hot water bottles and I'm thinking "bugger me, I could be a part of this action".

I therefore propose this challenge.

Anybody who can identify this long-dead lovely will receieve, from me,...umm.


*Checks desk to see what crap I can unload worthy prize I can bestow on a worthy TSFKA reader*

Right so.

Anybody who can identify this long-dead lovely will receieve a book about vampires somebody gave me and which I don't particularly like.

To be fair to Squib, you have 24 hours.

No cheating.

Monday, June 22, 2009

...some corner of a foreign field. Forever Australian...?

While browsing the interwebs this afternoon, my jingo-o-meter was set off by reading this story, in which those dastardly Indonesians are planning to build a restaurant, bar and club on the site of the Sari Club, target of the first Bali bombing in 2002. This would be instead of a peace park and museum to commemorate the bombings in which 202 people were killed. The writer of the story declares that apparently the "desolate" 800 square metre site of the former Sari Club is "considered hallowed ground by Australians".

In that case, the construction of an 'entertainment complex' on such 'hallowed ground' is totally appropriate considering the sensitive way in which Australians have treated other 'hallowed ground', such as Gallipoli, the Gallipoli Mornington Peninsular, even the 'hallowed turf' at Flemington. Not to mention the sensitive way in which a long line of Australians emboldened by cheap booze, a relatively strong 1st world currency and a mind-numbing sense of cultural superiority have been fine ambassadors of our country to the world.

I know, I should be ashamed for reading the Herald-Sun, but without my daily dose of outrage, what would my life be?


Munich, Beards and the Origin of Species

The following took place in 1992 in Munich.

I was sitting comfortably on a rock adjacent to a fountain near Karlstor, one of Munich’s medieval city gates, reading a book, stroking my unruly beard and eating a ham roll I’d procured from a nearby bakery. A lad of about 16 approached and stood above me.

“Guten tag,” said the lad, and continued in German.

I, of course, can understand no German unless it’s said slowly, precisely and in English.

“I’m sorry,” I said. “Sprechen sie Englisch?”

“Ja! Where are you from? England?”




“I give up.”


“Wow. Would you like to complete a survey?” asked the lad.

“Um. What’s it about?”

“It relates to the proposed redevelopment of Munich’s central pedestrian zone.”

“Right. Ok. Well, fire away. Do you mind if I continue eating?” I asked.

“Please do. Although your ham roll looks like it has been excreted by a dog.”

To that point I had been quite enjoying it.

“Ok,” continued the lad. “Question 1. I might sit down.”

The lad sat next to me on the rocks.

“Right,” he said. “Question 1. Gee it’s wet here.”


“Question 1. Were you born in Munich?”


“Ok. Well you have to have been born in Munich. Doesn’t matter, I’ll just tick ‘yes’.”

“Are you sure?” I said.

“Oh yes, they just want answers. Right, question 2. How long have you lived in Munich?”

“Less than 24 hours.”

“Hmm. That won’t make sense will it?”

“Unless I left the country immediately after being born and have only just, this minute, returned.”

“I’ll put ‘all my life’.”


“Wait a minute, I need to put your age too.”

“21,” I said, cautiously taking another bite from my roll.

“Ok. I’m 17. My name’s Schenn.”


We shook hands. Schenn’s hand was quite damp.

“Next question,” Schenn continued. “How often do you use Munich’s pedestrian precinct? Daily, weekly, monthly, yearly or very rarely.”

“This year?”

“Any time.”

“Very rarely.”

“I might put weekly if that’s ok.”

“Fine,” I agreed, warming to the survey.

“Ok. How many buildings could you identify and name?”

“The rathaus.”

“Is that it?”

“Um. There was a church with scaffolding.”

“Frauenkirche, well done, I’ll tick that.”

“Um, the green one with the thing.”

“Oh, St Peter’s!”

“Was it?”

“I’ll tick a few more here.”


“Would you be disappointed if the precinct was open to traffic?”

“Very!” I said with evident enthusiasm.

“Excellent! Now. I need to get your address. Not the whole thing. Just street and suburb.”

“Um. Wanna make one up?”

“Why don’t I? I’ll put my friend Hans’ address.”

“Good idea,” I said, wrapping the remainder of the roll in its paper.

“Thanks for your help,” said Schenn.

“No problem. Hey, why don’t you just sit at home and fill them out?”

“Well that wouldn’t be a very accurate representation of the real attitudes of the populace.”

“Good point.”

“Hey, what is that book?” he asked, spying my copy of On the Origin of Species.

(Yes, I really was reading it while backpacking through Europe, so what?)


“Do you believe in Darwin’s theories?” His tone was one of scepticism.

“Indeed I do,” I retorted, straightening my tie before realising, too late, that I was wearing a t-shirt.

“Interesting,” he said. “Interessant. Well, danke and Auf Wiedersehen!”



So, a wonderful travelling anecdote, one I relate regularly. Now it’s time to give away a prize. I’ve never given away a prize before. But I don’t want to be known as Tight Bob (mainly because it rhymes with tightwad) so here goes.

The first to correctly identify the beards below, will win my copy of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species. It’s a pretty standard edition but contains many of Darwin’s finest theories including the one about the fish.

(Incidentally, when I was in Darwin recently, I heard that Charles Darwin never actually stepped foot onto land in the place named after him but, instead, made all his observations while tossing in a boat 200 metres offshore.)

Beard 1:
Beard 2:
Beard 3*:
Beard 4:
Beard 5:
Beard 6:
Beard 7:
Beard 8:
Beard 9:
Beard 10:
Beard 11:
Beard 12:

*Not really a beard.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Weekend Drunken Shenanigans Wrap

Eat My Shorts will be glad to know that after three long weeks, the four beers in my fridge were finally consumed over the weekend. A bandmate came down for a Saturday night drinking session and because a) He's Irish, b) He's a drummer, and c) He's a cop, the beers stood no chance of surviving more than a few minutes.

Speaking of coming down for the weekend, Ben Cousins was in my town with his girlfriend. I'm not just the only goth in town but I'm also the only Richmond supporter in town, and so minutes after Cuz's arrival I had people knocking on my door giving me updates on which cafe he was at, what he was wearing, how big his biceps were etc etc. On the one hand, I'm hardly a starfucker. On the one hand, I would love to meet him. On the other hand, the mysterious third hand, I would have nothing to say other than, "Hey, umm, yeah, I barrack for Richmond and, umm, you're playing alright for an old fella..."

But as my mate The Drummer was also a Richmond fan, we decided that if we went to the pub and he was there, we'd say g'day. But by the time we got to the pub we heard there had been some sort of 'incidcent' resulting in one man being evicted, and Ben Cousins having to leave because of the amount of drunken fuckwits hassling him. Poor guy. He and his girlfriend were just having dinner. But I wonder if he was thinking to himself, "I used to be a fuckwit, just like these guys..."

Anyway, me and the Drummer got apsolutely plastered. We were spastic. So, so drunk. I lost count of how many wines. At the pub, I got into a jovial 45 minute argument with two Irish backpackers over James Joyce, then I got into a half hour real argument with a chick whose boyfriend was on the famous Ocean Grove Footy Club bus when they went all neo-Nazi. Our argument became so heated The Drummer actually dragged me away, then, when he wasn't looking, I went back and argued more. Her argument seemed to be, "What the boys did was wrong, but you know, there's two sides to every story, and that Jew was after financial retribution and the thing is, he's already rich!" How could I resist? We made friends in the end and shook hands.

Then I danced to techno music. Yes, techno music.

Then me and The Drummer gate-crashed a party in a (closed) restaurant. I was seeing triple, but in fine spirit.

Then outside my house, at 2.30am, a gang of about ten girls from a hen's night stumbled past, as drunk as me. I was quietly having a cigarette trying to remember my name, and one of them came up to me and here, unedited, is the conversation:

Hen: Show me your dick.
Me: Why?
Hen: Show me your dick and I'll show you my tits.
Me: How about you show me your tits, and I'll show you my tits.
Hen: No. Come on.
Me: No deal.
Hen: Please!
Me: No.
Hen: Fucken... Righto.

She then walked away with her friends. When they were about twenty metres away, she turned around and yelled, "One more try. Go on! From here!" And anyway, I was really really drunk, and I thought, "Ah, what the hell," so I unbuttoned and revealed. They all laughed and cheered and then the one who was supposed to show her tits yelled, "Sucker!" and they ran away laughing.

I walked into my house and found The Drummer, and Local Girl, who you may recall was the one a few weeks ago that I accidentally stood naked in front of (hmm, I'm detecting a pattern) and who took it the wrong way and jumped on me in my bed and I threw her off. Anyway, she went to the toilet and The Drummer said, "I fancy her," and then a bit later, he went to the toilet, and she said to me, "I fancy your mate" and I said, "Well, he fancies you," and anyway, he came out and I stood up and said, "Well, you both fancy each other, and you know where the spare double bed is... good night" and I went to bed. Anyway, this morning I discovered that all he did was walk her home and kissed her on the cheek. And I thought I was bad with women.

I was hungover all Sunday, and achieved nothing.

I am turning forty this week, but still acting twenty.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Fridays mean seeing the funny side of swine flu

Seen at Gordon Reserve, Spring Street Melbourne this afternoon was the humourous scene above. The statue of deceased colonial-era Australian poet Adam Lindsay Gordon was modified to humourous effect by the addition of a dust mask on its face and a sign around its neck reading:

"ice skating
causes more
deaths than
swine flu"

So totally Melbourne. Have a top weekend everyone.

An oldie, but a goodie

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date;
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimm'd;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature's changing course untrimm'd;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow'st;
Nor shall Death brag thou wander'st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow'st:

So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Thursday Night Hotties

No really, thank you.

Thursday Morning Hotties

In order of spunkiness

1. MrSquib (in case he's reading this but also because he is the hottest dishwasher stacker in town).

2. Robert Pattinson. It should be a crime to be that good looking

3. Mr Thornton. We are eloping very very soon

4. Jareth. I will never understand why Sarah didn't stay with the Goblin King. Never! *

5. Paul Keating circa early nineties

6. Cary Grant. He knew how to wear a suit

7. Dylan Moran. Sexy even with fungi in his hair

8. Bill Nighy. Sexy even (in fact, especially) with tentacles

9. Captain Jack Sparrow. I will never understand the Orlando Bloom crowd. Never!

10. George Clooney. Sexy and smart. Keep those Nespresso ads rolling

11. Keanu Reeves. Hot alien in suit

12. Barack Obama. He's the man with the plan

13. Ewan McGregor. Check out that sporran

* okay maybe cos she was 15 and it was illegal

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Wednesday Night Hotties

I got into one of those "Who is the hottest woman ever" conversations today, and I have narrowed it down to thirteen (who are pictured below, not in any order), but by tomorrow I bet I think of another ten that should have been listed here. First to correctly name all 13 wins a signed copy of 'The Catcher In The Rye'*

Puss or Squib are hereby invited to do a Top 13 Men... as long as Depp's in it.

* Signed by me, not JD Salinger.

Victory to the Iranian people!

I really wasn’t going to write about the upheavals in Iran (largely because I know three quarters of fuck all of Persian history and culture) but the complete silence from certain sections of “the left” is starting to shit me.

Hundreds of thousands of people (possibly millions) have taken to the streets in cities across Iran to protest against what seems to be a deeply dodgy election result and are shot, baton charged and tear gassed for their pains – and the gatekeepers of the hard left say nothing.


Socialist Alliance – nothing.

Green Left Weekly – nothing.

In some way, I shouldn't be surprised. These fuck-knuckles have always been deeply uncertain about Iran, largely because they can’t blame the usual suspects (Zionists, the CIA, the military-industrial complex, the US, the “west”) and their typical reaction is to turn away and hum loudly when the Iranian government does something like beat members of Tehran’s bus drivers’ union and jail its leader (as happened last year).

Of course, it would all be different if these events were taking place in another country in the region starting with the letter "I" (and no, I don't mean Iraq).

But still, Iranians continue to take to the streets to demand democracy and human rights, despite the beatings, tear gas attacks and shootings.

I’ve been in quite a few demos that have got a bit excited, but I’ve never had some cunt try and shoot me.

Victory to the Iranian people.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Strange occurrences in a Melbourne winter

The author relaxing after a hard day

The other day, I was walking to the station from work on a freezing Melbourne winter afternoon, dressed in my usual work clobber (black double-breasted suit, white shirt, full length black overcoat, black scarf) when a bloke coming the other way walked past.

“Good evening Father” he says, in a marked Irish accent.

Not being a Catholic priest, I was nonplussed and thus was unable to respond in time with a simple “Bless you, my son” or even a witty “Feck off’.

Assuming he wasn’t taking the piss, we’re left with two possibilities.

He was deceived by either;
a) the air of sanctity and piety radiating from my innocent brow, or
b) the fact I have a face that suggests the owner is fond of a glass or 27.

Either way, it was a bit of a head scratcher.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Good Riddance

Finally, Costello has announced his political intentions, namely, that he doesn't have intentions anymore and he's quiting politics.

For about ten years there has been 'speculation' that he would take leadership of the Liberal Party. Endless speculation. Speculation, speculation, speculation, but never any actual event, and yet, for some reason, the speculation was in the newspapers every fucking week and it was SO BORING. I'm glad he's going just so I don't have to read the 'speculation' anymore.

I'm also glad he's going because he never did anything of worth. I've read the Costello Memoirs. He seems like a nice bloke, but he stood for nothing in particular aside from transparency of government accounts (which is a good thing) and, er, nothing else I could find... and I was looking real hard.

GST was his baby, and now I have to do a fucking BAS every fucking three months and it fucking shits me up the fucking wall.

Some politicians quit the game in shame, some quit it in glory. Costello quits the game in a blaze of failed aspirations and with only drab, colourless contributions to Australian history.

Mr. Costello: Thankyou for your honesty and your dedication to transparent accounting, but that's it.

You did nothing that will be remembered in 100 years time aside from being Howard's pissboy.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Sonic Youth - 'The Eternal' - CD Review

(Puss in Boots and Desci may just want to skip this post)

'The Eternal' is SY's 16th studio album. Other enduring rock bands become cover bands of their own earlier work (eg: Jesus & Mary Chain, Sex Pistols, Elton John), or they release dull middle-class variations of their early work (eg: U2, and dare I say it, Nick Cave), or they don't even bother putting much effort into new stuff and instead tour the world based solely on their reputation (eg: AC/DC, Rolling Stones), and there's also the ones that release nothing at all but still manage to announce or perform massive tours (Michael Jackson, Pink Floyd).

It is rare to come across a band that over 20-30+ years continue to release quality recordings with as much verve and power as the work that gained them fame in the first place. Tom Waits is one such beast. Bowie is arguably one as well. Sonic Youth is another.

Their sound is very unique, which comes as a result of alternate guitar tuning, a propensity to invent new sounds using custom-made effect pedals, extreme loudness and a delightful avoidance of standard 'verse-chorus' song structures.

Being that all the band members are in their early to mid 50's, the question had to be asked... can Kym, Lee, Thurstan and Steve still rock? On goes the CD (for the 5th time this weekend) at full volume.


1: "Sacred Trickster" --- Dischordant mindfuck clitrock uh-huh uh-huh. Ears already bleeding over keyboard.

2: "Anti-Orgasm" --- Metal spiced womb-thumpin' foot-stompin' g droppin' artrock. Guitar lick sounds like God dying. 'Sister' era bridges. 'Washing Machine' era middle, 'Murray Street' era sweet outro. The band's history summed up in 6 minutes.

3: "Leaky Lifeboat" --- One of Lee's two contributions. Like all his songs over the last 30 years, they have some cool guitar work but don't sound fully SY. He's a guitar God, but he should leave the songwriting/singing to Kym and Thurstan.

4: "Antenna" --- Smoother than a baby's bum epic noiserock. Chorus a bit humdrum but the rest sweeter than sucking on Aphrodite's tits.

5: "What We Know" ---- See track 3.

6: "Calming The Snake" ---- Calming her snake, but exciting mine. Kym Gordon = Rock Goddess No. 1 ever ever. Guitars on fire. Loins on fire.

7: "Poison Arrow" ---- Good music, shit lyric melody/concept.

8: "Malibu Gas Station" --- Hmm, we're in a mid-album bland rut. Has moments, but you have to wait around a bit, but redeems over the last 90 seconds, which is about the best 90 seconds on the album.

9: "Thunderclap For Bobby Pyn" --- Whoah-whoah yeah-yeah 2-minute cockrock rockin' punk cocks yeah yeah rock. Play at 11 or not at all. Not bad, but not great.

10: "No Way" --- The obvious sell-out catchy single track that's not as good as the ones where they don't give a fuck about radio airplay.

11: "Walkin Blue" --- Walk in or walking? Dunno. Dunno about the song either. They go all 60's psychadelia harmony-like. Strip the feedback away and it could go on Sesame Street.

12: "Massage The History" --- Nine minute closer. Sweet. Very sweet, but one for the fans. Kym does a Bardot and the boys swoon. I melted into the floor. Equal best on the album (with Anti-Orgasm).


So all in all it ain't their best effort. In the pantheon of 16 albums it'll struggle to get into the Top 10, but it's certainly not in the worst three or four. So, er, that puts it at about 9th-13th. But they prove they can still rock, and still have heaps to offer to the world of rock music.

If you have an I-tunes account and a spare $3.38 and want to expand/start your Sonic Youth collection, purchase 'Anti-Orgasm' and 'Calming The Snake' (you can't get the nine minute one on its own) and play them really, really loud.

If you have another spare $3.38 get 'Malibu Gas Station' and 'Sacred Trickster'.

And Go Tigers.

As TISM said: "Rock music is for the angry and depraved / That's why you can't really rock until you're middle-aged."

Friday, June 12, 2009

Slough, eh? Where else have I heard of Slough?

Come friendly bombs and fall on Slough!
It isn't fit for humans now,
There isn't grass to graze a cow.
Swarm over, Death!

Come, bombs and blow to smithereens
Those air -conditioned, bright canteens,
Tinned fruit, tinned meat, tinned milk, tinned beans,
Tinned minds, tinned breath.

Mess up the mess they call a town-
A house for ninety-seven down
And once a week a half a crown
For twenty years.

And get that man with double chin
Who'll always cheat and always win,
Who washes his repulsive skin
In women's tears:

And smash his desk of polished oak
And smash his hands so used to stroke
And stop his boring dirty joke
And make him yell.

But spare the bald young clerks who add
The profits of the stinking cad;
It's not their fault that they are mad,
They've tasted Hell.

It's not their fault they do not know
The birdsong from the radio,
It's not their fault they often go
To Maidenhead

And talk of sport and makes of cars
In various bogus-Tudor bars
And daren't look up and see the stars
But belch instead.

In labour-saving homes, with care
Their wives frizz out peroxide hair
And dry it in synthetic air
And paint their nails.

Come, friendly bombs and fall on Slough
To get it ready for the plough.
The cabbages are coming now;
The earth exhales.

This was written in 1937.

There was much embarrassed coughing and throat-clearing in the 1940s when some not-so-friendly bombs were falling on a large number of English cities.

Not too sure if Slough was hit, though.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Why people continue to believe this shit is beyond me!

I know Caz would probably blow a gasket, but Catherine Deveny's take on the Mind, Body, Spirit Festival in the Age yesterday is quite worth a read.

Fucking woo merchants.

I'd lock them all in a big box, so I would!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Have you all read J.D Salinger's 'The Catcher In The Rye' at least once? Good, then. If not, get thee to a bookstore and read it NOW. It's one of those books you have to read before you die, preferably twice. Once when you're a teenager, because the protaganist Holden Caulfield is also a teenager and he speaks beautifully on your behalf, then once as an adult to admire the artistry of the book and also to remember what it was like being a teenager.

The book has been well protected by its author. There was one lame attempt at a movie adaption way back in the late 40's and it was so horrible, Salinger prevented it from ever becoming a film ever again. Even without the weight of Hollywood behind the product, the book has still managed to sell approximately sixty-five million copies worldwide and to this day remains a best-seller, and if you read it, you'll know why. Kinda like 'Grapes of Wrath' and 'To Kill A Mockingbird', it's an American novel that is very readable by both literary elitists and the hoi-polloy, but what gives 'Catcher' an edge (in my mind) on those two is that it is not at all earnest or political - it's introspective and emotional, and has the ability to to prod and tickle your intellect* as opposed to feed it a three course meal.

The reclusive authour of this masterpiece, JD Salinger, is currently very old, very ill and very, very angry right now. See, some bloke has written a sequel to the book, with Holden Caulfield now an old man, and Salinger is quite rightly attempting, through the courts, to place an injunction on the novel.

My initial reaction is to take his side and say, "It's his character, nobody can touch him." But we're in an age of 'interpretations', whether they be re-imagining of Shakespeare's plays, Superhero re-tellings, or Alien vs Predator B-Movies, or fantasy porn or even cosplay. Characters are being appropriated left, right and centre in many guises. I have a book called 'Ahab's Wife' which is a novel about, you know, Ahab's wife, but the estate of Herman Melville aren't suing. George Lucas doesn't sue people who write online Star Wars fantasies or run around town in Darth Vader costumes - but maybe he would sue if they made a seventh movie without him. Disney and McDonalds are very protective of their brand and characters and have a history of suing people who use/abuse their image, and hell, even Tom Waits has sued companies for using music in ads that sound like him.

There's precedents on both sides of the argument. I'm sure the bloke who wrote the 'sequel' was paying homage to Salinger, but it's backfired badly, and I'm sure Salinger is sincere in his love for his character and his lifetime of protection. I doubt there can be a law to settle this, and it's why IP lawyers rake in the big bucks around the world. It's murky.

But as much as I feel sorry for Salinger, I tend to think the 'sequel' should be allowed to go ahead. We drop Greek Gods into our poems and stories. They made a film called 'The Queen' starring Helen Mirren which was a fictionalised story about a real, living Queen who didn't sue. 'Characters' are in the public domain whether they like it or not, whether they are copywrited or not, and maybe Salinger should just accept it, as much as I can fully understand how much this would hurt him.

Perhaps it should simply be settled like this: Wait until the bloke dies. Then it's open slather, and if you make a film or book using his characters, a percentage needs to go to his estate. We can have a hundred lame sequels of Catcher, but on the goodside, hopefully someone (when Lucas dies) will re-do Star Wars episodes 6, 1, 2 and 3 and make them actually entertaining (but please keep Portman in the jumpsuit.)

* Though Mark Chapman took it too far when he shot John Lennon, holding a copy of the book, and reading it straight after shooting him.

You lot will thank me for this one day.

Many people come up to me and say “Ramon, you’re a professional alcoholic with a hectic social drinking schedule. How do you fit it all in?” to which my usual response is “Drink! Drink! Girls, feck, arse!”

However, in the interest of promoting irresponsible drinking, I’d like to present the Ramon Insertnamehere Handy Dandy Guide to Alcoholism for you at Home.

First, choose a career where excessive use of alcohol is not only tolerated, but indeed encouraged. The obvious choice in this regard is as priest in the Catholic Church, but this rules out teh chicks and anybody interested in sexual congress with partners above the age of consent. As a fallback, I suggest the job in the working media.

Second, if you’re going to hide alcohol around the family home or workplace, then for God’s sake keep a mental note* of where you’ve hidden it (for example “bottle of Coopers Ale hidden in the bookshelves behind the collected works of George Orwell”, that sort of thing). For an aged relative to pop around for a cuppa, only to discover a hip flask of brandy hidden in the teapot is a definite no-no and you can’t keep blaming the time when the Deputy PM dropped around for a chin-wag, now can you**?

Finally, the early morning shakes can be blamed on your anti-depressant medication***.

And remember – white wine in a black coffee cup looks exactly like water.

Hope this helps.

* I realise this can get tricky towards the end of the evening, but make an effort do.
** Or can you?****
*** This works better if you are actually on anti-depressant medication.
**** No, probably not.

Midyear Music Plug

I have a friend who claimed, several years ago, that all good songs have been written. Drunk, and presumably with tongue planted firmly in cheek (otherwise, how could he seriously say it), he went further, claiming that no good song has been written since The Joshua Tree.

Firstly, The Joshua Tree was good, but not great. Secondly, this statement is, of course, utter bullshit for 2 reasons:

1. The potential for good songs is not finite. There are literally infinite combinations of notes, chords, melodies and progressions. Songs can be written for the remainder of human existence and never be repeated (despite Cat Stevens' successful lawsuit against The Flaming Lips).


Great music is being produced all the time.

Each year I buy around 30 albums, based upon my pre-existing liking of a particular band, a range of reviews and the word-of-mouth of respected friends. I further support the band by going to their gigs, putting together mixtapes for friends (in the hope that they will then purchase the albums and go to the gigs) and talking up the band and album.

Here, I intend to do the latter by listing my favourite albums so far this year, in order, with a rating (6=Good, 7=Very Good, 8=Excellent, 9=Outstanding, 10=Jizzed my Pants).

Pink Mountaintops
Outside Love

March of the Zapotec

A.C. Newman
Get Guilty

Jason Lytle
Yours Truly, The Commuter

Yeah Yeah Yeahs
It's Blitz

Grizzly Bear

Animal Collective
Merriweather Post Pavilion

Bill Callahan

Sometimes I Wish I Were an Eagle

Art Brut
Art Brut Vs Satan


Bonnie 'Prince' Billy has released yet another album this year. Meh.

Sonic Youth have just released their latest. Haven't heard it yet but seeing as they're so divisive here at TSFKA, I can't wait to make a judgement. Perhaps Perseus already has it.

Ok, so I haven't yet jizzed my pants this year (at least not in relation to music), but it's only June, Joshua Tree Guy.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Weekend Sports Wrap


Australia made the World Cup finals for the second time in a row, and only the third time ever. Unlike the last two times, we were expected to make it this time 'round, now that FIFA, the world governing body of soccer correctly located us in Asia as opposed to somewhere in the South American vicinity. Our tee-totalling Dutch coach Pim Verbeek is to be now known as 'Aussie Pim'. Can't wait for the World Cup. Can't wait for the spectacle, the thrill, the sleepless nights and the inevitable depression when we're kicked out, but hopefully not by a cheatin' divin' Itie this time.


Only three days in, we're already eliminated from the world Twenty20 championship. Brett Lee and Michael Hussey were both shithouse, and yet again on TSFKA I call for their sacking from the Ashes team. Meanwhile, Andrew Symonds didn't even play because he broke team rules by having a beer and not telling anyone he was having a beer... after-hours. He said today that he 'didn't fit in'. On the one hand, if you want to be an elite sportsman getting paid millions of dollars, maybe a reliabce on 'having a beer' every night is not such a good thing, but on the other hand, 'having a beer after-hours without telling anyone' should not really be a sackable offence. If it were that, Ramon and Lewd Bob would be unemployable. But really, when all is said and done, it was only Twenty20, and who gives a fuck?


My team Richmond lost again. We've won two out 11 matches and sit second last on the ladder in this, the fifth year of Terry Wallace's 'five year plan' to make us successful. Unlike the USSR though, Richmond get rid of failed despots pretty quickly, and Wallace coached his last game on the weekend and now some 12 year old called 'Jade' is coaching us. It's hardly a coaches name. In recent history we've had Terry, Robert, Tony, Tommy, Kevin, John and Spud. Now we have 'Jade'. God help us, but if he selects the team by blindfolding himself and throwing darts at players' names on the wall, and his tactic is to 'get the ball and kick it towards the goals' he'll do better than Wallace anyway.


Tour de France is less than a month away. Cannot. Wait. I love the scenery, the SBS commentary with hardly any ads, the drug scandals and the bosomy models handing over the champagne to the winner each and every day. For those who've never watched a whole race, I highly recommend staying up one night and watching one in its entirety. It's little wonder they take steroids. I couldn't even walk up some of those hills.

Power Reading

Just like the Australian cricket team, I failed at my attempt to read 'War & Peace' in 48 hours, but only because another sport interrupted my progress - 'Power Drinking With Hot Chick', at which I excelled, but two days later, I think I am still hungover.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Holiday Poetry Slam

I think I could turn and live with animals, they're so placid and self contain'd,
I stand and look at them long and long.
They do not sweat and whine about their condition,
They do not lie awake in the dark and weep for their sins,
They do not make me sick discussing their duty to God,
Not one is dissatisfied, not one is demented with the mania of owning things,
Not one kneels to another, nor to his kind that lived thousands of years ago,
Not one is respectable or unhappy over the earth

Except cats, of course.

They're up to no good.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


In The Age today here's a piece about male circumcision and the law.

The article states that "...circumcision might abuse the rights of a child" and that, "...circumcision might be considered an assault or a wounding... There is uncertainty as to whether the consent of a parent for the circumcision of their child is sufficient to allow a circumciser to legally perform the procedure."

It infers that it is possible, perhaps, for someone who has been circumcised to sue his parents and/or the circumsiser.

I know that some people put female and male circumcision in the same category, but, personally, I really don't see it that way. Though it's only 12% of male babies getting circumcised these days, I am circumsised, as many of us (a lot more than 12%) Gen-Xers were in those days, and I have no problem with it. I have a penis, simply lacking some foreskin. Female circumcision involves the removal of the clitoris and I would say that's a whole other topic.

The article also states that risks of circumcision include, "...surgical mishap or complications and decreased sexual pleasure."

Well, there was no mishap or complication in my own case, and I do feel sexual pleasure (even if Melba disapproves). Whether or not I would feel more sexual pleasure if I wasn't circumsised is something I'll never know, but for the meantime, I don't inted to sue anyone, and I am content and satisfied with the genitalia I carry and the sexual pleasure I feel. It functions, it's smegma free, easy to clean, and indeed, I have come across women who much prefer a circumcised dick than not.

But, matters such as these are coming to a head (pun intended), and the operation I guess will become rarer and rarer in the coming years to the point, I predict, that it will be illegal in Australia. I suppose it doesn't matter except for Jews and Muslims with their Abrahamic traditions, but I just wanted to throw my two cents in and say that it really doesn't bother me. It's a non-issue.

Over to you, parents: Did you consider it for your kids?
And to you, male readers of TSFKA: Are you? Is it an issue?

Monday, June 1, 2009

Demoralising Darwin

I'm currently in Darwin covering the APPEA (Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association) conference. Each year they hold a huge event for around 1500 industry bigwigs and politicians. Each year they go to extraordinary lengths to make peace with whichever indigenous population they have most recently demoralised through various destructive means such as digging the crap out of sacred ground, confusing local communities with bombast or pumping waste in every form and in every direction.

The opening ceremony featured aboriginal dancers, a spokesperson from the local indigenous people and Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu who was, I have to say, an outstanding singer and left-handed guitarist. And he's blind.

I felt a great deal of sympathy for the spokesperson. He stood before 1500 people and 'welcomed' the mining industry to his native land. Trouble was, he was clearly and utterly saddened to make the announcement. He was a broken man. The welcome was said with such reluctance, such obvious pain, that I nearly cried. Yet 1500 people applauded rapturously, completely missing the emotion in the delivery and only hearing the words.

Industry spokespeople, as well as the NT Chief Minister Paul Henderson and Federal Minister for industry, Martin Ferguson, have been talking about protecting the environment, ensuring safety for workers and protecting local aboriginal communities, with great gusto and vehemence. Still, I just don't buy it.

Weekend Sex (And Lack Thereof) Wrap

Apologies for the late posting, however I only just got back at home after three nights in Melbourne. That's not to say I was off having sex all weekend. As it happens I did have some sex, it's just not to say that I did...

Anyway, on Friday night I had my second date with E-bird who I met via RSVP.com. It is the first time I've tried RSVP, and she was the only person I liked on it, and we had had a coffee date last weekend and this time we had 'drinks' from 8.30pm onwards at a nice bar in Collingwood, Melbourne.

Went alright.


* We talked from 8.30pm until 1.30am without any awkward pauses.
* She confessed to having a girl-crush on Julia Gillard, and a massive crush on Paul Keating.
* She instigated subtle touching. You know, hand on arm when making a point sort of thing.
* A complete stranger came up to us and said we 'looked good together', and asked how long we had been a cpuple. E-bird said to her, "We've just started dating."
* She is wonderful and I really like her.


* She made it clear several times that moving out of Melbourne would not be an option for her. It wasn't said directly, as such. We're not going out, and we weren't discussing moving or anything, but she managed to steer the conversation into that sort of direction several times, as well as asking things like, "Do you miss Melbourne? Do you ever foresee coming back?"
* She is the same height as me (6'). But her ex boyfriend was Burmese, and she did refer to them as 'small' (she's been to Burma!) and so I'm guessing I'm taller than him. Even so, if she gets in heels, she'll be taller. I still don't know how I feel about that. I know, I know, I shouldn't be so old-fashioned, and Patchouligirl doesn't mind her fella being shorter, and, well, yeah...
* At 1.30pm she announced she wanted to go to to sleep and so I walked her back to apartment. I went for a kiss, and was only offered a cheek. Bad sign. Maybe.

I shall be emailing her today requesting a third date.

Had band/family duties rest of weekend.

Highlight: Fish n Chips for lunch, Sunday.
Lowlight: Finally Richmond wins a fucking game, a thriller no less, and I missed the whole thing.

(The sexors happened last night with my sometimes-lover of the last 3 years, Miss Artist, who has made it very clear to me that I am 'too old' to ever consider as a boyfriend, but 'just right' as a sometimes-lover. She gave me what I believe Gen Y refer to as a 'booty call', which is a terribly uncouth term for what is a wondrous act. It was a fine night because we also went to see the original 'The Time Machine' at The Astor. Great line. The main guy was 50,000 years in the future talking to this chick who lived in a kind of Eden where they just sat aroud frolicking and grazing on fruits, and he was trying to explain machines and science to her and she didn't understand. He said to himself, "Oh, there's no point trying to make her understand. It would be like trying to explain these things to someone on the island of Bali in my own time!")

Now before you jump up about me having sex with Miss Artist, consider this: Miss Artist is also the last person I had sex with (about 6 weeks ago) and we have been intimate (when single) for three years. It's just the type of relationship we have and I don't think it impedes my thought processes about anyone else. I happen to think it is a very beautiful relationship and understanding we have. So get fucked.

Why am I writing all this on the fucking internet?