Saturday, May 01, 2021

Don't Bother with Nomadland

The flim Nomadland has won twelve prestigious awards at my count. The acting was excellent. The scenery quite stunning. The filming, first class. The plot (was there really one?), close to believable.

But excuse the French, it was as boring as batshit and I couldn't wait for it to end. It was just so tedious, and in a film I don't want to see a woman in her small camping van sit on a bucket and hear and experience her having an explosive bowel movement. I don't want to experience that seeing anyone doing that. Not much subtlety there, in fact not much subtlety in the film at all. 

I can waste time perfectly well with my own company and not waste time sitting in a cinema and $22 would have bought me a lot of chocolate bullets or aniseed rings.

If I've put you off the movie, sorry. If you've seen it, I will be interested to hear your opinion and what I missed in the film that made it win so many awards.

Friday, April 30, 2021

Friday Funny

I respect police. I admire them. Most are excellent people who do a very difficult job. So when a friend asked me to say 'I love cops', without closing my lips, I tried.  My attempt may have made me say something quite true.

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Gay Outing Photos

Candee said on stage she is now 67 which may be true but unlikely. She has been performing for 45 years, probably true. She can't dance, she can't sing, she can't even lipsync and she has a very deep male voice. But Candee is a Melbourne institution and much loved. 

I've had three conversations with her male alter ego. He's a nice guy and should you see him walking down the street, you would never guess what a monster he could become when he turns into Candee.

I've seen Candee so drunk on stage she could not perform. I've seen Candee so drunk she fell into a bush at Midsumma Carnival and could not get up. I've seen Candee eating a kebab in full drag from the night before on the street at 9am. 

Candee has perfected the scowl, the sneer, the upturned and downturned lip and her timing is brilliant. She now has an Indian lesbian stalker as she refers to her, to help her get up and off stage. One of her most amusing performances for us was at Three Faces in the 90s where she performed as Lindy Chamberlain with a blood stained baby cardigan miming to a song and crying out about how a dingo took her baby. Too soon? You had to be there.

I tried espresso martini for the first time, thanks to our Hairdresser Friend and at $22 a pop. After that I stuck to wine. We had delicious chips and onion rings to start with and then ok pizza.

The other performer was Laura Gravity

Great fun. Thanks DT's Hotel. Photos.....

Hairdresser Friend added a touch of glam.

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

More on no tram wheels

It is official now. Australia doesn't have any spare tram wheels. Not one to be seen throughout the land. When was the wheel invented? No, I don't know but there are no wheels for our trams. What shipping restrictions are there from the great tram land of South Africa? Doesn't the word approximately really grab you. Read on:

The following routes will run an amended timetable during peak travel time:

  • Route 70 and 75 trams run approximately every 10 minutes
  • Route 19 trams run approximately every 6 minutes
  • Route 58 trams run approximately every 5 minutes
  • Route 59 trams run approximately every 6 minutes
  • Route 109 trams run approximately every 10 minutes

Yarra Trams are experiencing delays to replacement wheel deliveries from its South African supplier due to COVID-19 restrictions.

As a result, some A-Class, B-Class and Z-Class trams have been temporarily removed from service until wheel shipments arrive.

I anxiously await tram wheel importation in spite of COVID. 

A Gay Outing

This is prelude to tomorrow's post that comes with pictures and less verbiage. 

There is a song I vaguely remember with lyrics something like 'Gay bar, gay bar. I wanna go to a gay bar'. We no longer have any great desire to go to a gay bar, two lonely old men with no friends. Note to self. In next life have younger friends not older friends. 

Aside from in (insert place name drop) New York and Sydney, we haven't been to a gay bar for over twenty years, I think. 

What gay bars are there in Melbourne now, a city of 5 million people? Well, very few. DT's, Sircuit, Laird O'Cock Pen and The Peel. There were many more. I modern times gays integrate with straights and go to the same venues. 

In the 80's gay entrepreneur Ken Payne owned and ran the mega successful Mandate bar in St Kilda. At some point it changed its name to something I can't remember. Eventually the late night bar closed for reasons unknown to me. But people nagged Ken about missing Mandate and he went on to open Precinct 3182, the number being St Kilda's post code. There was a stand alone pub, a movie theatre, another bar, a cruise area including a train carriage and a sauna. All those people who nagged Ken made a single appearance and never returned, because they were older and past such things. Precinct 3182 did not attract enough people and slowly closed down, although the pub lingered on for longer. Ken must have lost a fortune. 

So, I've put that on the record. Since then many Melbourne gay bars have closed. People hook up via the internet now, not by meeting in a pub with flirtatious glances. 

One venue that opened in the 1990s has survived and has made a soft reopening after you know what. It was our Hairdresser Friend's birthday and she expressed an interest in seeing a drag show. We haven't seen her since last year as she has been at at mother's in northern Victoria as her mother had a toe amputated. Hairdresser is back in her beloved St Kilda now, but her mother now needs another toe cut off, so she will probably have to return.

We worked on where to take our friend for her birthday and booked to see a drag show at DTs. I don't do late nights now, and 5pm to 9pm suited me fine. The show did not begin until 6pm as I thought. 6pm was lock out time. There were a whole 22 of us there to see the show, such as COVID restrictions allow. 

Our friend works at a salon in Chapel Street so we would meet her on a tram at the corner of Chapel Street and Toorak road to go to the Church Street venue. It was a stressful nightmare for me to get this right, but I did. She texted, I've got seats for you. Then she texted, some old codger has sat in one of your seats. I replied, Kick the old **** out of the seat. 

We caught trams home too and it all worked so well. I can't see us going out to a gay bar again soon, but I am pleased we made the effort and well done DTs and its terrific staff.

I know drag is not to everyone's taste and some women find it offensive, but I just see it as fun and I don't connect drag queens to real women, and I'm sure I've heard drag queens say, 'Some of my best friends are straight women'.

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Town Hall Tuesday

 After this one only three more town halls to go unless there is another old one I don't know about. After I post the last town hall photos, there will be a quiz, so pay attention. 

For most of the 19th century well into the 20th century Collingwood was a flat and poor inner Melbourne suburb, with much noxious industry and dirt poor residents. I think it was essentially Protestant and at war with the neighbouring also mostly working class Catholic inclined Richmond. 

NB When I was young there was still antipathy and discrimination between Proddies and Micks. 

Poor as the city may have been, Collingwood built a very grand and substantial town hall. As par for the course for most inner local councils, during the various 1990s council amalgamations City of Collingwood became part of the City of Yarra. Like any inner city area, it is now very costly to live there.

I've just remembered some personal stuffs (come on, I've remembered two things, so plural, stuffs). In perhaps the 1990s we were at the town hall ballroom for a gay boot scooting dance competition. In the same era we watched Our Friend in Japan compete in a ballroom dance competition in the ballroom.

A police station abuts the town hall. I'd pull it down.

Not the town hall but across the road is a Mormon tabernacle. 

Monday, April 26, 2021

Monday Mural

 I don't know where. I don't know when. Enough to frighten a child? Maybe.

Sunday, April 25, 2021


Over the seventeen life of my blog I have posted many positive things about this ANZAC day that honours our fallen war soldiers. You foreign types may not know the acronym stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corp. It's quite special and talk about war and sacrifices and injustices can make my eyes rather wet.

I didn't post anything about ANZAC Day today until very late, but I think I have found something worthwhile to say, and sorry this is not a positive post about ANZAC Day and I hope I have the facts correct from just what I heard on the radio.

Australian Aboriginals fought alongside white Anglo Saxon Australians in WW I. Did the returned Aboriginal soldiers receive the same benefits as white Australians? Of course not That was a century ago. What did they expect! At least they did not receive solider settlement land that was tiny and almost desert land. 

What really disturbed me was that after our Aborigines stopped being counted in census as flora and fauna and counted as Australians, that is after they served in the Vietnam War, they were denied membership of the Australian Returned Services League, the RSL because they were black fellas. This was in the 1970s, perhaps into the 1980s. The 80s are certainly adult years of my life. What a disgrace. I wonder if the RSL organisation has apologised to them. I wonder if the RSL now accepts them. I wonder if individual white soldiers think back to when they joined the RSL and did nothing about the policy. I wonder how the government allowed such a thing to happen.

No less important, there are Australian women retiring from our armed services who saw active duty overseas. As happens with so many retiring soldiers they can have multiple medical issues, especially psychological and they are served by the Department of Veterans Affairs. They have to fill in claim forms of course, you know check the boxes, but often for female soldiers the questions are not relevant, or there isn't an appropriate answer. The forms are all designed for men, even though women have been cannon fodder served in active combat for quite some time here. 

As a comfortable fat old white man, is it any wonder blacks and women are getting a bit uppity? Oh golly gosh. What to do?

Sunday Selections

Joining with Elephant's Child and River for Sunday Selections. Just some random photos this Sunday and I think I have composed this in ten minutes and it will probably be evident.

This pipe is broken off and bent after a good whack by something. I hope it is not a sewer vent. I think it may be base of a gas lamp.

Ecology, environment and sustainability are all good words to here. That is what this building at Federation Square is about but I need to investigate further.

No cinema here??? It must be the head office of Palace Cinemas, which we rather like.

Brummels was a small restaurant with a photographic gallery above. We loved it. The owners were both drunks, Wally in the kitchen and his glamorous wife table waiting. The food was always good and not expensive for the the area. If Grace in Perth was drunk, she would be just like Wally's waitress wife. They even look alike. Well, thirty years ago she looked like Grace does now.

Siemens ruined there reputation in Australia with rubbish trams for Melbourne. To be fair, they were very cheap trams, and it shows in so many ways. You can't even put your foot straight.

There buses are accommodation. What are they called? Streamliner? Airliner? I don't have time to check.

Through the winter of 2020 often we sat lonely and at some times fearful in Prahran Square, initially not allowing anything to touch a table where we were sitting lest we catch you know what.  

Well, the window display attracted my attention. That's half the battle. 

Brunch in Altona Village. I was impressed by this Yank Tank.

People want to do the right thing but are not always able to.