Thursday, April 29, 2004

FINALLY! It's taken years, and much head scratching, but the answer just came to me in a momentary flash of brilliance a few minutes ago. Score! I finally hit upon the perfect name for a hard-rockin chick band who are funny and don't take any shit! Man it's great! Hmmm, I bet you someone has already named their band it, especially if they're in a girl-punk Spinal Tap tribute band, and if so, good on them, they deserve it. Anyway, the inspired band name is.......Vaginal Tap! Isn't that perfect? I can just picture exactly what kind of band that would be. Like, "Hello Cleveland. We are Vaginal Tap! Fuck you! We're funny and we don't take any shit!" Yeah, that would be sweet!

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

Aha! Who says we can't get a book deal?
Parkinson has gone and defected from the BBC to ITV, in order to secure his "prized" 10pm timeslot. A sign of his increasing levels of evil? Perhaps. I just can't trust him anymore since the Meg Ryan debacle. His whole "doddery old Parky" thing seems like an act, designed to cover up his inner-tyrant.

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Watched K19: The Widowmaker the other night, which was, as the name suggests, bloody awful. This was mostly because of the cod Russian accents churned out by both Harrison Ford and Liam Neeson. I'm noticing a worrying trend (or maybe not a trend, 'cause it seems always to have been the case) which is big Hollywood actors not really bothering with their accents, but rather throwing in the odd inflection now and then to suggest foreignness. Like in (I just gotta say it again) "K19.... The Widowmaker", Ford would suggest Russianness through his pronunciation of "comrade", but that was about it. There was some article about celebs and accents in The Age on the weekend (in Sunday Life, I would imagine), and apparently Renee is currently the "queen" of accents, or actually prolly the princess, cause Meryl must still surely rule. I'd be interested, actually, to check out Evil Angels and see what she does with "1980s Australian". Apparently it sucked, but I'm willing to give her the benefit of the doubt.
Was watching the Newshour with Jim Lehrer show earlier this evening and they have this cool thing now where they show an extended piece of unedited stuff from speeches given on that day by both Bush and Kerry. There's no editorial comment or anything. It's great. It's so people can listen to what both candidates actually say and then can weigh them up for themselves. Kerry was great, by the way. It was interesting and relaxed. He was just talking to a group of tough-looking manufacturing workers about the state of the economy, and he sounded like he actually understood what was going on. He made logical criticisms of Bush's economic policies, and revealed their flaws and showed how you could do it way better if you were actually concerned about making life fair - or better, even - for average workers. What he said had the ring [and substance] of truth. It was thoughtful and cool. Bush was, well, weird and sucky. He seemed flimsy in direct comparison to Kerry. He has an odd speaking style. You get the sense that he's uncomfortable and kinda grasping at stuff, with energetic rushes of words that don't say much and then these pauses where he kinda keels to his right and raises his eyebrows while his mouth remains closed. It's very irritating. Anyway, he was all slogans about how the 'entrepeneurial spirit of America' would save the economy, or something. You didn't feel like you really NEEDED to listen to what he was saying, whereas with Kerry you really did. Like, what Kerry was saying was more necessary to your understanding. It was cool.
Here's a news update;

"Prime Minister John Howard denied he was targeting gay people when he signalled a ban on same sex marriages, saying he was just stating what most people thought."

Well, that's alright then.

Except that it's not. I think that both clauses of that sentence are untrue. I mean, who else is a ban on same-sex marriage going to effect OTHER than gay people? And - not that I believe you should simply base amendments to laws on what most people think, since laws have to be, like, fair and lawful - I also dispute the idea that most people don't support gay people having the same right to marry as heterosexual people, so I don't think he can make that argument either. See, ninemsn does polls on its website each day. For instance, today's poll is "Do you think Craig Stevens did the right thing in stepping aside for Ian Thorpe?" Anyway, a few days ago, the poll was about gay marriage. Tens of thousands of people had voted and there was a clear margin in favour of recognising same-sex marriage and rejecting John Howard's proposed amendment to the Marriage Act. So hah! I'm going to claim that as proof. 'Ear-to-the-ground', down with what 'real people' are thinking, proof. Suck on that, Johnnie.
Okay, just got back from Radiohead gig. Totally fucking wonderful! I had forgotten how great their songs are! WHOAH! I've been neglecting them of late, I think, and had begun to take them for granted. Anyway, SO brilliant. They make fucking great music! I really wish they had played more songs and more songs and more songs! They have so many fucking great songs, I am just remembering. And Thom's spazzy dancing in Mixematosis was sweetarse, and his crazed eyeballing of the camera during You and Whose Army was ace too. But DAMN them songs are fine! Hoooooo-eeee! Even being three rows from the roof of Rod Laver Arena didn't diminish the greatness. People around me were grumbling that the crowd wasn't getting involved enough [they had general admission envy, I think], but that reminded me of the time I saw Radiohead when I was in year 11, and noticed how people just get really focussed during the songs, not wanting to miss a moment, and only remember to spaz out during the breaks between. And then, hearing the first few notes of the next song, they, like, convulse in joy, and then remember themselves and get sheepish and restrained, and then forget themselves again and just get all awed at the music and stare. People really listen with intensity at Radiohead gigs. It could easily have been a dance party with dem kickarse tunes, except for the fact that they tend to transfix people in internally exploding wonder, with the adrenaline giving everyone a kind of 'just on the point of hysterics' look. Fucking awesome!

Monday, April 26, 2004

Our Comments system seems to be acting up. I don't know why, but I find that if you open them up and then click on "Edit Comments", another window gets opened and you can read what people [mostly me] have written, if you so wish. Or, at least, I can.
Ergh. Feel so sick. Have a cold that has gotten progressively worse over the day. Took one hanky to uni. SO not enough for my nose-tap purposes. It's now wet-through and cold and gross. Ew ew ew. Oh well, it's all good. Radiohead tonight, so yay. Essay proposal due tomorrow... not so yay. But, ooh, the Mandevillian has arrived in the mail. Hmmm, what baby names have past pupils picked for their kids this time around that I can be amused at? I mean, it's just funny that they update the school magazine about these developments in the first place. Hmmmm, perusing, and it's pretty much standard. It's all Amelie Beatrice, Sophie Elizabeth, Sophia Mercede, Elizabeth Clara, Madeleine Rose, Juliet Mary, Georgia Sophie Jane, Chloe Patricia, Ned Thomas, Leo Lawson, Flynn Nicholas, Finn Thomas, blah blah blah. No Oscars or Maximillians this time. And only one Liam and one Jack... Anyway, I'm gonna name my daughter Dolly and my son Wilf, so who am I to judge?

All the teachers seem to be procreating big-time, too. Among them, bushwalking buddies the Ferdinands' had a baby (named Dane). Is Dane Ferdinands a funny name? What country was that Archduke from? I can't think. Anyway, OH MY GOD! That dark horse IT technician guy, you know, Mr Fisher of the speckled brown leather jacket, now has, like, THREE kids under the age of five and another one on the way! Dude that guy's been busy. And here were we all thinking he was sad and alone. Ah, IT man, we hardly knew ye. Jeez, things can really happen over five years, huh?

Haaahahahahahhaaaa! The school theme chosen by the Counsellors for this year is "Brave The Challenge, Live The Challenge". Ohmygod! Has it ever been possible to make up a good one of those? Ai ai ai!
Oh man. Barry Williams is singing the American national anthem before the Celebrity Boxing match. Wow. Moving. Hahahahahahahah! Ahaahahahahahahahhaaaaah!

Sunday, April 25, 2004

Aw, the Beckhams are so sweet. I'm watching this doco called The Real Beckhams on the tele at the moment. And they're moving to Spain, and going to the OBE ceremony and hangin with their kids and stuff. It's nice. They're lovely. He hasn't really been fucking around has he? That would suck!
Just finished watching Matrix Revolutions......Uh, WHAT THE FUCK? Dude, it was totally lame! Well, not totally. That bit when all the things are drilling and swarming and the people are shooting and saying "Reload!" and "Open the gate!" and stuff. And I'm like, "Push the EMP! Push the EMP!" And my dad's like, "What's the EMP?" And I'm like, sigh. "Dad! It's an electro-magnetic pulse! Unnnn!" Yeah, that bit was cool. But the rest...Whaaaaa?! I mean, what was WITH all the talking? Yap yap yap yap yap. Seriously dudes, just SHUT UP, or at least say something that has some kind of MEANING! Also, I knew Trinity was gonna die, but I expected it to be way more affecting that it was despite the lack of shock value [thanks little cousins from Bendigo!]. But when it happened it was like, SO not a big deal. Disappointing. Where was the bawling? Perhaps some bawling/crawling along the metal pipes, knowing you've got to meet your destiny but still screaming uncontrollably and struggling like your body was being flattened under the weight of grief, or something? Where was Neo, the gibbering wreck? Where was the full impact of all that intense love stuff? Trinity wasn't nearly as upset about it as she should have been, either. Um, lady. Hello! You're, like, dying! This is it for you! Aren't you kinda freaked and upset about that?... Anyway, the ending, with that oracle and that kid and all. Puke. Very vague and flabbergasting puke. I'm not sure what they were trying to say, but I'm damn sure I didn't like it. So anyway. That's Matrix Revolutions done. Damn sullier. In the immortal words of Jon Stewart, "It b-lows".
Have been searching on LexisNexis for stuff relating to an essay proposal I'm doing on gay representations in the media. You know, I'm going to be mining that whole "Queer Eye; What does it mean?" malarkey, hopefully without coming off like a wanker of either the "Ooh, how trivial [sniff]" or "Ooh, humanity has arrived!" variety. It's a fine line. Could I just say, "Ooh, I just really like them"? Anyway, I have to examine the way gaydom as a 'cultural phenomennon' is constructed in the media. So I LexisNexised my afternoon away. And typing in the word "homosexuality" found me all manner of articles and opinions and Letters to the Editor [ESPECIALLY the latter] that are really quite sick and disturbing. Too much talk of "deviance", "sexual perversion" etc. And boy, are those Christian letter-writers a crazy bunch! Quote the Bible much? Anyway, one member of our great public wrote in to express her anti-PDA position, wondering;
"why others do not speak out against such public displays. Homosexuality is immoral and quite frankly disgusting. I for one do not want my child to grow up in a society that not only supports this kind of lifestyle but promotes it as well. Are we just going to sit back and let it happen?"

I get a very chilling feeling from the implied threat here. Social organisation against 'immoral' people 'exhibiting' their immorality, "have you no shame" type chills. Ew. It makes me quite concerned, actually. Mean people suck. And they have no cause.

And then there are 'consumer-sensitive' bollocks, that, despite being bollocks, still reveal a tendency to acquiesce to crazy wrong ideas. For example;
"An iconic Kiwi outdoor clothing brand has changed its name to cater to the sensitivities of the insecure Australian male.
Fairydown clothing has changed its name to 'Zone' because Aussie blokes do not like the homosexual connotations associated with 'Fairy'.

Although this is serious, I found it funny that Edmand Hilary defended the Fairydown label and thought that people who had a problem with it were silly [too right, Edmund], on the basis that he had slept in a Fairydown sleeping bag as he 'camped' his way up Everest. And then mounted it. Haahaahhaah! I'm a loser.

And then there are the government officials [numerous, including our own] who talk some horrible talk. John Howard cast the gay marriage question in doomy terms, considering that "You're talking here about the survival of the species." Ooooh. Riiiight. You, sir, are a cunt.

And PNG's Deputy Prime Minister said that the gay and feminist movements had a "demonic agenda" to create division and hatred between the sexes;
"Blinded by their feminist ideology and perverted lust for those who are members of their own sex, feminists and homosexuals think that they are fighting for their 'rights', whatever they may be, but in actual fact they are playing into the trap of the Master deceiver," Dr Marat said.

Hee hee, the 'Master deceiver'. Whatever whatever. In this search I also found out that there's all this pseudo-science going on, studies and so forth, about homosexuality. Which is strange, cos I just finished an essay on pseudo-science in racial theories, and how it was used to rationalise inequality, in like, the 19th century! Here's more crazy;
"A survey of students in Chongqing uncovered what government experts see as a high incidence of homosexuality, and some say pollution is to blame."


Anyway, this is the one that got me most hysterically crazed/amused. It's the official statement of the Catholic Medical Association's findings on homosexuality. Ahem;

"Healthy psycho-sexual development leads naturally to attraction in persons of each sex for the other sex. Trauma, erroneous education, and sin can cause a deviation from this pattern. Persons should not be identified with their emotional or developmental conflicts as though this were the essence of their identity.

In the debate between essentialism and social constructionism, the believer in natural law would hold that human beings have an essential nature - either male or female - and that sinful inclinations (such as the desire to engage in homosexual acts) are constructed and can, therefore, be deconstructed.

It is, therefore, probably wise to avoid wherever possible using the words "homosexual" and "heterosexual" as nouns since such usage implies a fixed state and an equivalence between the natural state of man and woman as created by God and persons experiencing same sex attractions or behaviors.

Same-sex attraction as a symptom. Individuals experience same-sex attractions for different reasons. While there are similarities in the patterns of development, each individual has a unique, personal history. In the histories of persons who experience same-sex attraction, one frequently finds one or more of the following:
* alienation from the father in early childhood because the father was perceived as hostile or distant, violent or alcoholic,
* mother was overprotective (boys),
* mother was needy and demanding (boys),
* mother emotionally unavailable (girls),
* parents failed to encourage same-sex identification,
* lack of rough and tumble play (boys),
* failure to identify with same-sex peers,
* dislike of team sports (boys),
* lack of hand/eye coordination and resultant teasing by peers (boys),
* sexual abuse or rape,
* social phobia or extreme shyness,
* parental loss through death or divorce.
* separation from parent during critical developmental stages.

In some cases, same-sex attraction or activity occurs in a patient with other psychological diagnosis, such as:
* major depression
* suicidal ideation
* generalized anxiety disorder
* substance abuse
* conduct disorder in adolescents
* borderline personality disorder
* schizophrenia
* pathological narcissism

In a few cases, homosexual behavior appears later in life as a response to a trauma such as abortion or profound loneliness.

Same-sex attraction is preventable. If the emotional and developmental needs of each child are properly met by both family and peers, the development of same-sex attraction is very unlikely

I don't quite know what to say. Is it "oh fuck off, you right crazy fuckers!" or is it more "ha-ha. You guys are right crazy fuckers"? Hmmm, I'm sorry to be earnest and stuff, but all this crap is just WRONG and it hurts people. I don't like it. And I don't see the point in trying to understand their position. Blah blah, I'm as bad as they are, whatever. But fuck them, they're wrong.
Ergh! Our Prime Minister is such a copycat!

"Prime Minister John Howard has made a surprise visit to Baghdad for Anzac Day services.
Under extraordinary security arrangements, Mr Howard made his first trip into Iraq since Australia sent troops as part of the Iraq invasion force in March last year.
He attended the dawn service, and spent some time talking to troops and other Australian representatives on the ground in Baghdad.
It echoes a trip made by United States President George W Bush who last year went into Iraq on a special American day - Thanksgiving Day.
Security over the trip has been extremely tight.

"Echoes"? ECHOES!! It's more like a carbon copy, buddy. And consider who he's copying! I mean, THAT guy's a jerk! These two men are just foul. Please make them go away. Puke puke puke puke puke!

Saturday, April 24, 2004

Hee hee hee. PJ Harvey and Franz Ferdinand and Electric Six are coming our way for Splendour in the Grass festival. SO hoping they do gigs! Gonna be special.
This is probably too horrifying for you all to consider [probably? Lady, it is horrifying!] but it is of quite some concern to me. I really think that I did serious damage to my breasts by spending last week bumming around bra-less at my house while avoiding essays during uni break. It's like, quite shocking, the level of degradation. JESUS! I'm 22! When do I get my 'boobs of youth' to reminisce about fondly? This is NOT NORMAL! I really can't be 22 and have boobs like this! I didn't have boobs this bad last week! How can one bra-less week wreak such irreversible havoc? Sorry [especially dad, who sometimes reads this blog], but I'm quite aghast.
If you wanna, you can listen to a live set from Interpol right now, and for a while hence, with spiffy cool accompanying photo, at CBC RADIO3. But it's a pretty paltry offering, considering how some people get to actually hang out with the real deal. In New York! ARRGGGH!

Friday, April 23, 2004

Just came back from seeing Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. SO DAMN GOOD. Really. It's rare that a movie doesn't have a cringe moment, and this one REALLY didn't [well, not in that bad 'this is fucking up the movie' way. I mean, sure, Elijah Wood was creepy, but he was meant to be. Ew. The words 'I love you' have never felt more whiny, and wrong.] Jim Carrey hasn't been this good in a movie since Me , Myself & Irene [my GOD! But THAT is a GREAT movie. I am NOT kidding!] I mean, he's very different in this movie, and it's wonderful. Kate is totally excellent too. Oooh, and that feeling you get when you think of what it must be like to have forgotten parts of your life but not know you've forgotten them and so not realised that they ever even happened, OR when someone else has forgotten moments with you and doesn't know that they ever even happened. Dude! The look on her face when she greets him at the book shop. OH. MY. GOD. I felt pain, people. Good pain. Immediate, shocked, 'in the moment' pain. Also, that bit on the street with, you know, that, uh, older person, and that, erm, blonde person... not to be too specific about it, but that moment of realisation, really really...whew. Totally excellent. Really really recommend this movie. It hasn't been poisoned at all. I mean, it's quite a feat, really. A movie about love, and the subconscious which plays with different realities and memory and perception, blah blah blah...Hello! Minefield! But it SO doesn't suck. AND it's internally consistent. AND you believe it. AND it's funny. AND involving. And the characters/interactions? Uh-oh, I'm about to say 'well-observed'. There, I said it. Amazing!

Thursday, April 22, 2004

More evidence that Jim Shembri (the man who gave Mystic River five stars) is a clueless hack. In his Logies write up in this morning's Green Guide, he spent about one third of the piece chastising Delta Goodrem for developing a new "talk-to-the-hand attitude, which was not only unbecoming, it was downright rude". All because Delta, in his eyes, fobbed off cancer-related questions from Eddie McGuire with a simple "I'm just here to enjoy the evening". That's attitude? And unbecoming? YOU suck Jim Shembri. I'm sure Delta's now ready to stop talking about her illness and get on with the rest of her life. She has no obligation to discuss her health just because she received "so much sympathy and support", as Shembri suggested. I'm sure that people who did offer sympathy are simply happy she's well. It's a strange thing to think that she has obligation to the Australian public. Additionally, surely Delta should get credit for being open about her treatment (not that she had to be) for the past year. If she did keep bringing the whole cancer thing up, I'm sure there'd be columns in the Green Guide talking about how Delta's been "milking" her illness for commercial gain. For the record, all that she's basically ever said about her illness was that "I'm sick, a lot of people are sicker, and I hope this brings awareness to the disease". The media's milked her situation, not her. So, if Jim Shembri's trying to start the inevitable backlash, I think he should realise how "unbecoming" he seems as he tries to read rudeness into a desire to move on.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Today I was in my Media lecture, and I found something out. The lecture was about radio, and the guy was talking about how radio is now on the internet, and showed us the Canadian radio on the internet, which he considers to be the best example of it [and he hopes the Australian version, called Dig, will aspire to the Canadian example]. Anyway, they've combined web design with radio to produce innovative stuff, or something. Anyway, he opens up the site to reveal a big photo of the Interpol lead singer, next to the words "Coming Next Issue: Interpol In Concert". I very nearly squealed. I couldn't refrain from saying "Dude, I love that band", even though I was sitting in the second row. Anyway, that's beside the point now. I'm just giving people a heads up about how we might soon be able to watch Interpol play, on the radio in Canada, but also on our computer screens. Ain't technology grand? Check out CBC RADIO3. I couldn't find any specific date, but hopefully it will be soon. Yay Canada!
Yay! Sex and the City seemed back on track again last night. Carrie wasn't too annoying, the script wasn't too trite, and there were some damn funny moments. Most notably: the bit where that pounding-sex-dude (couldn't think of better descriptor) mouthed "fuck you" to Carrie during the ceremony; the moment when, after starting a poignant, moving speech, Miranda's notes catch on fire and the bit where Charlotte throws the bouquet, it hits Miranda, and she stands there stiffly, looking grim. I'm gonna miss this show...
This is probably quite rude and presumptuous and wrong - since people's own determinations of their sexuality should be respected and accepted and all - but there are three gay guys in the cast of the new series of The Block, right?

Monday, April 19, 2004

I have just figured out how to fix our email link. It's been a year, so it's about time. It now works, so, if you have something to say to us that you don't want to simply comment, just click on MAIL US and it should work spiffy.

Sunday, April 18, 2004

Woo-hoo! CNNNN tied with Kath & Kim for Outstanding comedy series. Yay! I love it when cool and talented people break into this tacky shit. I feel they enjoy it on many more levels. Charles Firth was classic, getting 'serious' and saying "Let's not forget what this night is all about [significant pause]... Promoting Channel Nine's line-up for the coming week." Hee hee. And then he started to pretend to get 'emotional', almost choking up while reeling off the shows; "Who Wants to be a Millionaire on Monday nights, McLeod's Daughters on Wednesdays...And what about Jamie Packer!" with his mates having to pull him away from the microphone, James Brown style [minus cape], before he got carried away by the significance of the occasion. Classic!

By the way, Tosser Statement of the Night came from Eddie Maguire[obviously. He's such a crap host]. When introducing Delta, he was getting all serious about how we all know she's had a hard year, blah blah, and then he decided that the best way to convey that her life's turned a corner was with these words; "Well, tonight she has a new boyfriend, and a new look...." ARGH! Tosser!

And no, the Most Disturbing Moment of the night wasn't seeing what was growing on Rove's face [but that came a close second]. Rather there was something about him that was far more disturbing, and it was revealed during his Gold Logie acceptance speech. It suddenly became clear to me how upbeat and credulous he is about the Logies and their worth. Dude! That's like, insupportable! Like, only 50,000 votes are cast IN TOTAL to decide ALL the 'Most Popular' categories, and, as Amanda Keller reminded me on Mondo Thingo this week, votes are cast by people who actually buy TV Week, ie. by people who don't realise that TV guides come in the paper for FREE! And there's also the problem of Logie fixing and stuff, which we don't know much about. How involved are the publicity departments of each network? How do they decide which new young thing to give prominence to? Stuff like that. We shouldn't, like, applaud a conscious decision to ignore what might be wrong with the Logies, and prefer to heap praise on them as an 'Australian institution', blah blah, and make jabs at any elite types who might diss them. I'm just saying, if we are going to have them, then they shouldn't be so irritatingly flimsy or shonky, and yet so valorised. We so need a better and more credible awards system, or we at least need industry types not to be so damn precious about them! Either we make them more tacky or we make them more credible. We can't have the situation we have now, with people getting overwhelmed and earnest about their 'success' and thanking the 'people of Australia' for supporting them and shit like that. It might be a much more rarefied thing than it claims to be. I mean, it's nice that Rove won the Gold. Even though I hate him, he was the best of the nominated bunch. But that's what was also scary about the night. You know how I said I like it when cool talented people [or even jusy okay ones] break into this tacky shit? Well, Rove is now an exemplar of what happens to them if they're so grateful for it that they lose their wits about the spuriousness of the damn things. Long live CNNNN! That's all I'm saying.
Did anyone else think that Shannon Noll's performance at the Logies was kinda camp? I mean, what was with those backup dancers... building an engine, all bloke like, but then inspired by the need to dance, breaking into high-kicks and what not. At one point, it seemed like they were all about to get it on with each other while Shannon howled on oblivious.

Saturday, April 17, 2004

Seeing a new way to waste time, I followed your footsteps, Elanor, and did the ink blot test. It was supposed to be a joke right? I mean, some of those ink blots were just so obvious. I mean how many scary horrible frightening monsters can there be in the world? Anyway, I was actually quite surprised by my result e.g. it didn't reveal that I was a total neurotic, but rather some Ghandi-like peace lover. One other thing - I think it's very worrying that there is an entire site out there devoted to testing and categorising ourselves. But I put aside my concern, did the test, and here's my subconscious:

Guy, your subconscious mind is driven most by Peace

You are driven by a higher purpose than most people. You have a deeply-rooted desire to facilitate peacefulness in the world. Whether through subtle interactions with love ones, or through getting involved in social causes, it is important to you to influence the world.

You are driven by a desire to encourage others to think about the positive side of things instead of focusing on the negative. The reason your unconscious is consumed by this might stem from an innate fear of war and turmoil. Thus, to avoid that uncomfortable place for you, your unconscious seeks out the peace in your environment.

Usually, the thing that underlies this unconscious drive is a deep respect for humankind. You care about the future of the world, even beyond your own involvement in it. As a result, your personal integrity acts as a surrogate for your deeper drive toward peace and guides you in daily life towards decisions that are respectful toward yourself and others.

Though your unconscious mind is driven most strongly by Peace, there is much more to who you are at your core.

Friday, April 16, 2004

I just did that ink blot test that Erin mentioned on Maybe I'll Go Blind and here are my results:

Elanor, your subconscious mind is driven most by Imagination

This means you have a deep desire to use innovative ideas to enhance your life and influence the world around you. This drive influences you far more than you may realize on a conscious level.

Your need to be innovative drives how you look at new opportunities and the kinds of experiences in life you choose to have. On an unconscious level, the reason you may be so driven by imagination is your fear of destruction, the opposite of creation. When you are unable to create due to restrictions imposed by your environment or even ones you unwittingly impose on yourself, do you feel trapped or confined? You may find these feelings of unease only get better when you find another outlet for your imagination.

With such a strong creative orientation, you are willing to entertain a broad spectrum of ideas at any given time. The world is a fuller, richer place because you can contribute new ideas to any experience. Your natural curiosity inspires those around you and encourages them to come up with ideas they wouldn't have thought of without your help.

Though your unconscious mind is driven most strongly by Imagination, there is much more to who you are at your core.

I don't know why they always add that bit at the end. Anyway, does this sound like me?
OK, I don't know if people have noticed, but Symposiasts seems to have gone a bit nuts lately, and I think it's because both Elanor and myself are fiendishly procrastinating from writing essays, and you know, securing our future and stuff. Most worryingly, Elanor seems to have vanished into Television Without Pity, occasionally sending back garbled reports about "how amazing it is in their world" and so forth. Most embarrassingly, comments seem to get responded to in real time, which suggests that both myself and Elanor are lurking obsessively around the blog at all hours. Why does blogging activity seem to increase in situations when time is at a premium?
EW EW EEWWW!! Art Garfunkel is having sex on my TV with a girl who appears to be dead. WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON?

Thursday, April 15, 2004

That Technorati profile thing is cool, Guy. It has revealed to me that apparently this site called The Book Club Blog has a link to us [way down in the bowels of its links, but we're there nonethless]. Sweet. They're English. And intelligent! We are officially worldwide. But, why would they like us? And how would they find us?

I think we should reciprocate... So I have.
He he he Elanor, I love the politics behind the new link arrangement: friends first, followed by cool but unknown blogs, and then finally Belle de Jour which seems to have been banished. We'll show her a book deal!

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

Have made a few changes to our Links. Television Without Pity is da bomb, by the way. I feel quite at home there, reading twelve-page humourous recaps of Angel episodes, and such. These people know how to live. Kindred spirits.

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

Eewww, eeww. Just saw a vintage Madonna on Oprah special, from around the time when she was doing press for her first children's book, The English Roses. Now, it's never fun when celebs get spiritual, but Madonna, talking about the Kaballah, came across as an especially vapid twat. There were times at which Oprah, who usually goes nuts for this kinda stuff, was playing along in a bemused, "you idiot" kinda way: "oh yeah, because it's a life force, right, right... we are the light".

There was one bit that particularly irked me, which was when Madonna started talking about how we have to "own" both our successes and failures, e.g. take responsibility for the good things that happen to us as well as the bad stuff. One of her examples was illness - she was basically saying that we should "own" the reasons for which we become ill, which, reading between the lines, would be our "disconnection" from the "light". I cannot stand this "blame the sick for being sick" mentality, which seems to be cropping up everywhere within the realm of self-help, not to mention organised religion. In reality, it's just a means through which the healthy can feel like they have some control over their health - "I'm a good person, so I will not get sick...". But, while the healthy can feel safer, you're basically saying that the ill deserve to be in the state they're in, which really is not that compassionate, or rational for that matter. Madonna! Stop being such a wanker!

Monday, April 12, 2004

People, you gots to check out Guy's other blog, Petrol in the Car, right NOW! Fucking hilarious family holiday nightmare edition. My favourite part;

'I’ve found myself snapping at my (admittedly hugely passive-aggressive) mother every second minute, and even just randomly glaring at her because I can’t even articulate to myself why I’m so pissed off. Today, my sis and I accused her of being a “learned helpless” person. She then spent the rest of the day moaning about how “if we really think she’s helpless, maybe she’s a terrible mother, and we hate her lots and lots”. She really is the master, and has skills of passive-aggression that I could only dream of; she’s just so bold and audacious.'

OH MAN! So resonant, and yet, so much more extreme than my own experience. My mum doesn't have the same audacity, which means our [undeclared] stoushes aren't about going to greater and greater heights of irrationality. She actually makes a skill out of withdrawing from the contest. She just kind of closes down, hurt but quiet, and sets about making dinner or politely asks about what we're planning to watch on the living room TV, before going down the hall to watch her own show, alone, in the front room. Which leaves me feeling like a complete shit, like the most horrible person ever, capable of causing silent pain to such a nice lady. Her skill is to make us feel like she believes we 'hate her lots and lots', but is too fearful to say so in the heat of battle, so unsure is she of our response. Which is a heart-piercing little trick. She doesn't mount a defence, so then you're overwhelmed by guilt at beating down a defenceless person. WAIT! She IS a master!!
Um, FRONT PAGE of both broadsheet papers today featuring story and pictures [The Age much more prominently] about the new Australian connection to Becks' marital difficulties. WHAAAAA?
Have just got back from a weekend away, which is my excuse for lack of blogging activity. Anyway, will start up again once I'm back at work avoiding my thesis tomorrow.

Saturday, April 10, 2004

Yeeaaahhh!!! Just got back from fucking amazing Von Bondies gig. Dude, they're so rocking and cool. YEAH! And were well supported by the pretty cool Bit By Bats [who have a very good Joy Division/Interpol bassline going] and the shit hot The Mess Hall [who are much better up close. I saw them from our seats at the Palais when we went to see The Strokes, but they totally rule way better when you're right there with them. Totally hot lead guy, too]. Then Bit By Bats played again, but their first set was stronger. And then, [woo-hoo!] The Von Bondies hit the stage, lookin all moody and intense. Sweet. The best songs for me were Been Swank, Mairead, and Pawn Shoppe Heart, with honourable mentions going to Please Please Man, Shallow Grave, Not That Social, No Regrets, Broken Man, The Fever, and so on and so on and so on. Fucking amazing. Smack bang in the centre, right up near the stage, and totally comfortable there, thanks to the big bikies to my left keeping any tall bastards at bay. It is easy to stare at Jason, too, and not just because he's totally rad, man, but also because his hair is constantly in his eyes, which kinda liberates you, especially if you're like, a metre from the guy and quite a loser like me. Yeah, sprayed by sweat, some nice spazzing, excellent singing. Fucking great!

Not that this is very relevant, but last night and tonight, at both gigs, I spotted this guy who is the spitting image of 'Chops' from The Simple Life. You know, that guy Paris snogged for a bit and said should go to LA to model, blah blah blah? Like, exactly the same. Weird how people can look so alike and be from totally different places.

Friday, April 09, 2004

Can't go to bed. Seeing as there's crazy venting to be done and, as my computer's been offline for the past few days, I have a lot of stored venting to, well... vent. Okay. Guy, totally spot on about total sicko-ness of this whole Rebecca Loos thing. My god that woman is unfortunately named. But there is an upside, sort of. It has all led to further proof [though we hardly needed it] of what an absolute self-important dickhead loser dumbfuck Pat Cash is. You know how Loos was reportedly linked to three top tennis players? And how they weren't named, being quite unimportant details really, having nothing to do with Becks and all. Well, Pat Cash has chosen to come out and name himself as one of them, in the most dickhead sexist fashion I have come across in ages. What a cunt! I was totally shocked, confronted and outraged by this, actually. Anyway, here is the source of my rage. It's a little article from MX on Wednesday;

"Former Wimbledon champion Pat Cash last night said he was 50 per cent sure he had romped with Rebecca Loos, the woman accused of having an affair with soccer star David Beckham. But the tennis ace said he could not be certain as he bedded so many girls in a string of wild nights after his marriage hit the rocks. Cash, 38, told London's Sun: 'They all looked the same after a while.' Cash's manager Jim Flaherty said: 'Pat doesn't have the best memory, and there were lots of girls. That isn't to say Pat is trying to get out of it.' The Sun yesterday claimed bisexual Loos had affairs with three top tennis players while working for sports management company SFX."

ARRRRGGGGGGHHHHH!! Are anyone else's temples pounding with rage? JESUS! First of all, before I get to Pat and what a fuckhead he is, I've gotta say that Loos isn't actually ACCUSED of anything, stupid paper. She's gone public herself about Becks, right? I mean, why else would Posh say "There is no affair. She is a lying cow", huh? The article/situation is very irksome to me because Cash's coming out doesn't in any way draw fire away from Loos. It just serves to reaffirm her 'slut' status, and his 'tennis ace' ness. So unfair. What I find shittiest of all, and hardest to comprehend, is why he [or anyone] would make a point of saying how forgettable she was, in effect, how indistiguishable she was from all the other 'sluts' out there. There's no respect. It's all smear and glory. Fucking shitty. I mean, not to be a slut-caller or anything, but Pat, YOU'RE THE FUCKING SLUT! The fact that the people YOU were having sex with started to look the same to YOU after a while only says something about, you guessed it, YOU! Not them, and not women in general either. Okay arsehole [and arseholes generally]? You get it? Why the hell are you saying anything anyway, Pat? Your manager says you're not "trying to get out of it". But, Pat, you're not even in it! Or you wouldn't be if your huge ego didn't want you in the frame of every other fricking story going round that is TOTALLY UNRELATED TO YOU! Mark and Delta, ring any bells? But, Jesus you are a pig. My God!

The thing is, it seems heaps of people are pigs just like him, if the general tone of the scandal about Loos and Becks is anything to go by. It's getting very scary actually. Not really an upside at all.
Just got back from seeing The Black Keys at the Forum. And even though it feels like my head is about to split open, I have just enough will power to sit here and tell y'all that it was an EXCELLENT gig, before I blunder off to bed and fall into the sweet sweet luxuriousness of my new mattress. Aaaahh. There were three Australian support acts tonight, only one of which I had vaguely heard. But all of them were pretty damn good. If only I could remember their names. The first one was a two piece, whose guitar player would sometimes play a bit of clarinet, and it was good up-tempo rootsy/rocky stuff. I really enjoyed it. Whatever their name is, they're playing at the Duke of Windsor on Saturday, and they'll be opening there too. Really good. The second band I was in two minds about. But they had two great lead vocalist guys and their closing number "Tough Love" was supreme. I don't know their name either, but they're at the Espy on Saturday, and then later at Pony, or something. So figure it out for yourselves. The third support were The Drones, who played their slower stuff because the rhythm guitarist had a broken metacarpal. It was great. Sometimes sounded like early Nick Cave/late Bob Dylan. Nice. Anyway, all three bands seemed to perform really well and had great singers attached. Which is only right, considering that the lead singer of The Black Keys has such a great voice. They played a lot of new stuff, but the best song of the night BY FAR was Everywhere I Go from the Thickfreakness album. Oh man, that song was brilliant. Amazing. I also liked this one point during the night when we were referred to as "y'all", not in an obvious or pandering way, but simply because that's just how these sweet foreigners talk. They look like real nice and friendly boys, too. And not at all bearded, which is what I had expected. Rather, Dan Auerbach looked like a young, tanned and sandy-haired version of Jon Stewart [and he had really straight white teeth], and Patrick Carney looked like a lanky geek who really knew how to pound drums [sometimes using a maraca, which I hadn't seen before]. So it was a good night. Yeah, those boys from Akron can play real good. And it appears there's plenty of good Australian music coming our way, too.

Now, must to bed. Von Bondies tomorrow night. Need rest.

Tuesday, April 06, 2004

BTW, people, I should officially mention that I now have a second blog, Petrol in the Car. You might have noticed that I snuck the link in there ages ago; I was waiting to see if it died or not before I actually said anything. Yes, it's my wanky side-project, and nay-sayers be damned. And, no, I'm not edging out of Symposiasts. If I wasn't here, it couldn't be plural, and the name "Symposiast" has been taken...
OK, I was gonna put in an update post about "Becksgate", but after reading The Sun, I would firstly like to confess my guilty shame about enjoying this kinda tabloidness, and then underline how disgusting The Sun is. On their site they've got three stories about Posh and Becks, two of which try to depict the woman Becks allegedly had an affair with as a total slut (call them a slut-caller Elanor, not me). Firstly they write that "Becks' Girl is Bisexual", as she "lusts after both men and women", and kissed one girl for like "twenty seconds" some time during the last decade. While of course bisexuality doesn't equal "slutishness", this is what they're eluding to... this girl, like, just can't get enough, as they seek to emphasise with numerous examples of drunken shagging. She'll go after any guy or, gasp, girl! The next article is headed with the following, "Rebecca One Loos Woman", and begins with this: "Sex hungry Loos has had affairs with three top tennis players". They compliment this story with a picture of her nipple popping out of a dress, to illustrate her "loose"-ness, I assume. Umm, why isn't Becks "loose" in their eyes? Anyway, I think I'm gonna wrap this up 'cause I'm getting all disgusted and then having guilt attacks about being semi-interested.

P.S. There was one gold headline: "Naked Chef Burns His Meat and 2 Veg".... I have no idea what it's about, but it's gold.

Monday, April 05, 2004

Can't let this pass me by. Tony Abbott thinks that parents should have access to the medical records of kids under-16, to prevent "open slather" sexual activities by minors. OK, let's get this straight: what planet is he living on? In the real world, how could parental access have any benefits, particularly if his goal is to reduce teenage pregancy? Is someone with questions about sex, STDs and pregnancy going to touch base with their GP if they think he/she's gonna get on the phone to the parentals and spill the beans? Of course not. So then, is Abbott's aim to prevent kids from talking to their GP about sex? Cause that's what's gonna happen... How, I would like to know, is this gonna reduce pregnancy? Crazy, crazy, crazy.

Sunday, April 04, 2004

Finally gotten through watching the TV tapes for the week. And even though it's not very good, I know I'm gonna be watching The L Word without fail from now on. And I don't really know why. Even Jennifer Beals didn't make it happen, and I'm in a Jennifer Beals mood, having repeatedly watched her in Flashdance this weekend [which reminds me, I've gotta dust off that soundtrack vinyl and boogie down like I'm 4 years old and living in Belgrade]. I had pre-decided she was gonna be my reason for watching The L Word initially, but really, since I find I don't care a jot about her character, she can't now be my reason for continuing to do so. And, really, the show's pretty lame [what with the blah blah blah and the blah blah blah. I don't need to go over all the 'problems', do I? I mean, it's all beside the point in terms of my superficial response to things anyway. And I'm not an authority on gay culture so I would feel foolish trying to do the whole 'what's wrong with the show in terms of its depiction of gay people', or, alternatively, the whole 'what's wrong with the hyper-critical environment each gay show finds itself in', blah blah blah. I feel I can say this, though; the script kinda sucked]. So why am I so already hooked [which I really really am]?

The thing is, I like one of the characters, and generally with TV, that's enough for me. I'm such a sucker. My favourite is the hairdresser chick, Shane, who leaves heartbreak in her intensely sexual and superbly coiffed wake. You know the one? She's played by that cool girl who was the girl/boy in Young Americans [which, to my mind, deserved to be around for WAY longer than one season. There was that whole 'are we related?' thing yet to be resolved between Kate Bosworth and that rich dude, and there was the continuing relationship between the boy and the girl/boy, since the boy (Ian Somerhalder, by the way) had finally found out that the girl/boy was really a girl, and a hot one at that, doing a Twelfth Night number on the school she was at, in an attempt to piss off her neglectful mother, and stuff. Yeah. It was a really good show. I miss it]. Anyway, she's totally cool. Which leads me to my second criteria for watching a TV show; permanent frustration. See, to keep me hooked, I need to be permanently frustrated with the direction or focus, or whatever, of the show, particuarly as regards my favourite character. This makes me hang on just to see if every thing I want to happen will happen, even if, as is usually the case, such things that I want are inherently contradictory to the premise of the show, or, would result in removing my reason to watch it anyway. It's like how I wanted Dawson to be removed from Dawson's Creek. Not through death, mind you, cos then he'd be sacred to all his friends forever. No, I wanted everyone to freeze him out of their lives. They'd just be sick of him, and stop calling, and then we viewers would be left to watch the infinitely more interesting stories involving the interactions between Joey, Jen, Audrey, Pacey and Jack, while Dawson just disappeared from their radar of concern. Until one day, over an improbably witty lunch, one of them would say, "I saw that loser we used to know walking down the street yesterday. Obviously, I blanked him. But it got me thinking, can you believe that twat ever thought he was the central figure in our friendship group? Bizarre." And then they'd all tease Joey for ever having had a crush on him, and she'd go "What was I thinking?", and then they'd all remember some more embarassing things about having fraternised with the guy, and then playfully make Pacey buy the next round in contrition for ever having considered him his best friend, "What was his name again?" Now THAT would have been a great series. But it wouldn't have been Dawson's creek. I kept watching the actual series nonetheless, always looking for opportunities to be rid of Dawson, and always being severely disappointed when they weren't taken. Still, I loved the final season of that show, and I'm glad I stuck around for it. I haven't stuck around for everything. I finally gave up on The Bold & the Beautiful last year, so sick was I of Brooke still considering being with Ridge, and being also quite repulsed by the notion of Macey marrying Deacon. I mean, MACEY! She's such a dick! What the fuck are you doing with her, Deacon? And RIDGE! What a complete tossbag! What the fuck are you doing with him, Brooke? Why can't you and Deacon just get together and leave town and get as far away from the Forrester a-holes, especially Stephanie and Eric Snr, forever and ever and ever? Huh? Anyway, I couldn't take it anymore so I stopped watching it. Hmmmm, I wonder what's happening now?... Whatever, back to The L Word. My reason for permanent frustration here is this; I just don't get what the hell Shane is doing hanging out with the other women on the show. I mean, they're losers, baby. Get away from them! You're SO in a different universe. Just grab the newly arrived 'straight' hot chick [played by Mia Kirshner, who I really liked in Not Another Teen Movie, which is also an underrated gem] and get the hell out of there! Which of course won't happen cos, really, who would watch the show at all without those two? Damn TV-people know what they're doing, bastards. Anyway, failing that unlikely character trajectory, I'm hoping that they're gonna write Shane into a deep deep intense relationship 'unlike anything she's ever experienced', blah blah, being a player hairdresser and all, [who, I just learned from Critical Mass, might just be based on Warren Beatty in Shampoo. Nice!]. And before you go crazy on me, blasting me for wanting a 'reformed badgirl' storyline to suit some fucked up monogamy morality I've got going, just back off, motherfuckers. I just think the show really needs it, for two main reasons. Firstly, it will mean that the focus of the show will be on Shane [making it bearable], and secondly, because it will also require the presence on the show of another really cool character [which it really REALLY needs. At the moment it's got one-and-a-half cool characters, with the new neighbour making up the half, cos I don't yet know how annoying her story arc is gonna be] to play Shane's lover woman. You know, a chick who can match the utter deadpan coolness and physicality of Shane, and who you can believe she'd fall in love with [which will happen after they've bonded while making scathing fun of the earnestness of all Shane's peeps, and then they'll compliment one another on their excellent hair and rocker chic, which will all inevitably lead to the most righteous sex they've ever had, and then a torturously cool relationship, full of gallows humour and 'realness', no sap, etc]. I'll watch The L Word anyway, but these are my hopes.
I like going to the Melbourne Symphony. I went on Friday night before Amy's party, and it was a memorable experience. The first piece was Wagner's Parsifal, which was totally boring except for one bit, when one of the french horn players inexplicably vomited. On stage. In the middle of a public perfomance. Hee hee. It was weird. She then quietly removed herself offstage to collapse and, I presume, vomit some more. Until that point, I had been lolling in my seat in a sleepy haze, but my laughter at this strange turn of events woke me up nicely. The orchestra kept playing without a hitch, but the Wagner still sucked. Then came intermission, and some discreet mopping. But oh man, the second piece was an absolute blinder. Seriously. It was Adams' Harmonielehre, and it was fucking cool. All complex and stuff. The percussion section was fully loaded, which is always a good sign. And they were gettin it done, man. Yeah. Made me so happy. My dad and I have our favourites in each section of the orchestra, like, my favourite violinist is the one who looks like William Shatner, etc etc. But the percussion section beats them all. And we hate to see them underused. But Friday was totally their night [with apologies to the puker] and it was amazing. Respect.

Friday, April 02, 2004

After Fermina's frenzied escape into the salty Madrid night, we now bring you Chapter Two of the Symposiasts Period Romance. I particularly admire the following line: "a whirlwind of thoughts erupted within her". Nice, eh? The complete manuscript can be found here, and it will be updated shortly. As always, comments and suggestions would be appreciated:

Chapter II

All Fermina could feel was shock. As the coach sped off into the distant night, the life that was to be hers – the life of captivity – seemed to follow, vanishing up the city streets, until she was left entirely, entirely alone. It was not exhilaration that she felt. Rather, it was a kind of emptiness. For although (as she was beginning to recognise) freedom had been suddenly and unexpectedly thrown upon her, at this stage all she could feel was the lack of constriction and constraint – something that had surrounded her for as long as she could recall. Freed from the cold walls of La Denetrione, who was she? What would she become? How would she cope? A whirlwind of thoughts erupted within her, and her face began to pale. She started to breathe heavily. She felt, strangely, that the walls were closing in around her. Not the walls of La Denetrione, but the walls of fear. Suddenly, she collapsed onto the roadside. Everything was black.

Fermina awoke with a start. Her brow was caked with sweat, and she felt fatigued, as if she had been on a long, long otherworldly journey. As she gradually began to survey her surroundings, she realised with a shock that the room in which she lay was entirely foreign. What was this rank, dirty place that surrounded her? Where was she? It occurred to her that she had absolutely no recollection of what occurred between the moment at which she jumped from the speeding carriage, and this point. Violently, she leapt up from the bed upon which she lay and ran towards the closed wooden door. Without thinking, she attempted to open it, and after finding that it was fastened shut, began to throw her palms against it with all the feeble strength she could muster.
“Where am I?” she screamed. “Open this door, open it right now!”
Alas, there was no response, and after many minutes had passed, she retreated from the door and lay once more upon the bed. She closed her eyes and returned to the world of sleep and dreams.

As she awoke the second time, Fermina could dimly recall the feeling of safety that Alejandro’s strong arms had provided her – if only he was with her now! ‘He would know what to do,’ she thought despairingly. As she shook herself out of this dream-state, she realised she had been woken by a jangling of keys outside her door. As it began to slowly open, Fermina froze where she lay, barely even able to breathe. As the door continued to open, the figure of a woman was revealed; an old woman, of short stature and stoic build. Grey hair topped her head, pulled into a tight bun. Her face was bare, except for two orbs of bright rouge atop her cheeks.
“Ahhh,” the stranger sighed, “I’ve got myself a good one”.
At this point, Fermina was able to shake herself free of her crippling fear.
“Who are you,” she screamed, “where am I?”.
The woman only laughed, shook her head and retreated back through the doorway. As the door began to close once more, Fermina began to cry uncontrollably.
“Where am I,” she sobbed, “Let me free. Do you not know who I am? Let me free!” As salty tears streamed down her face, Fermina heard a sharp locking noise, and realised that, after a brief taste of freedom, she was once again trapped, constricted and constrained. But where?
I had quite an unfortunate tutorial presentation experience yesterday, caused mostly by my refusal to ever read the endings of books. I just can't do it - the last twenty pages or so I just have to skim, or else it feels like I'm going to vomit or something. I don't understand why, but its always been this way, and as a consequence, the endings of everything I've ever read are pretty sketchy.

So of course, I think to myself "I can present on Lolita without a real understanding of the ending - what tricks could Nabokov possibly have up his sleeve?". Not seeing how this could lead to tutorial death I go in, read my carefully prepared little talk, then face a barrage of accusatory questions such as "don't you think that scene at the end might contradict your reading of blah", "hasn't Nabokov sort of subverted the meaning of the entire novel in that scene, you know, that one within the last twenty pages". All I could come up with was "it's a novel full of contradictions [vomit!]". Then everyone started attacking me with PoMo theory ("can we really talk about a "real"?), so instead of responding I decided just to take slow and reflective sips from my water bottle, hoping they'd run out of steam in the interim.

HOWEVER, although I didn't read the last twenty pages, I still disagree with their argument. Basically they were saying that because we subsequently discover that Lolita/Dolores was "cheating" on her Paedophile Humbert, therefore she deserves less of our sympathy, cause like, only "nice" victims of paedophilia deserve our sympathy, right? Hmmmm.
So, are we all gonna go see Missy Elliott or what?