Saturday, April 30, 2022

Saturday Relaxation

Entitled relaxing, I am not sure that drone footage of some of the most stunning world landscapes is really relaxing. I suppose the music is relaxing.

I find the footage mesmerising. While most are an hour long try this brief one filmed in Iceland as a sampler. It is five minutes long. If you tv is internet enabled, the clips are unbelievably well filmed in high definition and crystal clear on a big screen.

 We haven't killed our natural world yet but we are on the way.

We know St Kilda better than any other area of Melbourne and it is part of our local government area City of Port Phillip. In order former activist, local councillor and mayor Serge Thomann put up this lovely video with a rather good soundtrack. I know every scene in the clip.

Friday, April 29, 2022

Trafic, traffic is not generally amusing

It has been quite some time since I have posted a Jacques Tati film clip and I may have posted this sexist and ageist clip before, but no matter. Tati was a very clever film maker and this is from the 1971 film Trafic. In these more modern times, I am sure he could have been amusing with electric car windscreen washers. 

Thursday, April 28, 2022

A Tale of Two Covids

Friend 1 lives in the country and via social media told us late last week he wasn't well and thought he had the 'flu. He took a RAT and it was 'inconclusive'. His word and I assume negative. He took another the next day, with the same result. The third day he phoned us. He had tested positive. R spoke to him and could hear background noise over his barking cough. 

Where are you? 

At a cafe. 

You are supposed to be home isolating.

I can't stay home for a whole week. I am using a mask when I am near anyone.

Have you self reported? 

No. What is the point. Everyone is getting it.

Well, we haven't so far.  I am very cross about his behaviour but not surprised. He is rebellious against rules and his mask wearing habits were poor. Think under the nose when he had to. He is triple vaccinated though.

Friend 2 is a transport enthusiast and takes some great videos from trains and trams, mostly locally now but in the past from all over the world. He lives on the Gold Coast in Queensland and has been very Covid careful. He is here in Melbourne mainly to film from an old Tait electric train on a special service last weekend. He was feeling unwell towards the end of Sunday and while his initial RAT was negative, the next one was positive. He suspects he caught Covid before he came to Melbourne. He is holed up in his short term rental accommodation and I asked him if he needed anything that we could get for him and deliver to his door. He has thought of some things and so we will do that tomorrow when we do our weekly shopping. Calling him a friend is stretching it a bit, but he has no one here to help him and as he is being responsible by isolating, he deserves help.

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Vote often Pt1

We have a Federal election coming soon, in about five weeks times.

It is a choice between the Labor Party, the party for workers that also cares for the social underdogs and the less advantaged in society. Well, that is the theory. (For US readers, say Democrat)

Then there is our Liberal Party, which is confusing as it is our conservative party. It forms a coalition with the National Party that used to be known as the Country Party. (US, say Republican, UK, say Tories). It is a supporter of big business, mining and minimal action on climate change. The poor need to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. 

Into the mix must be thrown Greens and independents and some extreme parties who can gain Senate seats by using very complicated preference deals. 

Preference deals? We vote for a person or party in order of preference. Simply, I will mark the five on the ballot paper with a number in order of my preference. So, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. If the party I put as number one  does not win, then my vote goes to my second choice, and so on.

My federal seat of MacMillan, once Melbourne Ports has become more marginal but I suggest it will again be Labor Party win. MacMillan is a lower house seat in the House of Representatives. 

The upper house of parliament is known as the Senate and at times called the house of review (of legislation passed by the Representatives) but it does have other powers too. Regardless of state populations, each state elects 12 senators and the two largest territories elect 2 each.

A few lower house federal electorates interest me and these are about independents, once a term for Liberal Party members in disguise but now genuine independents.  I think for now that is enough to absorb. In the next election post I will write about some specific seats.

I'll just mention that voting in federal, state and local council elections is compulsory and without a very good excuse, you will be fined for not voting. 

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

A Queer thing at NGV

Our friend Victor in Sydney made a flying visit to Melbourne for a day after having to cancel a northern New South Wales holiday because of the March floods. We met him for coffee and he invited us to join him to view the exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria, called Queer

While the exhibition was interesting, it felt rather all over the place without any cohesion. It runs until August and is free. Here are a few snaps.

Do you remember this dress? It's made up of 254 Amex cards and costume designer Lizzie Gardiner  wore it to the 1995 Academy Awards whereby she won the Best Costume design for the film The Adventures of Pricilla, Queen of the Desert.

I suppose I checked but I remember immediately thinking this was a painting by Jeffery Smart, and it is.

Don't ask me about this one.

I thought this was a stunning photo. Drag queen Misty is participating in the 1991 Gay Pride March in New York. Would you mess with her defiant appearance?

Remembering the evil British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and her 1988 anti gay Clause 28 law. The artwork by John Spooner was published in The Telegraph, London in 1990.

I can't remember what this one was about. Pretty though.

This one really struck me. Stuck on You is by Dylan Mooney from the Queer, Blak (sic) and here series. Indigenous and perhaps Torres Strait or South Seas Islander.

I can't remember anything about this work. Note the 2 o'clock picture with the letters F.MC 2233.

Monday, April 25, 2022

White Australia War Remembrance Day

It is a war celebrations remembrance day here, ANZAC Day. Australian and New Zealand Army Corp. So inconvenient really because bugger, the shops are shut until 1pm. 

Around the country and in Turkey and perhaps Netherlands, London and France, the wars and fallen Australian soldiers are remembered. As I am typing this, soldiers of the Russian and Ukrainian armies are dying, some quick and clean and some long and lingering torturous deaths you would not wish upon a fly, never mind the citizens. 

I've posted the original Redgum clip twice before for ANZAC Day. War is terrible and that bastard Putin knows that but he is inhuman. Soldiers who love their Russian country have been sent to a terrible war, just as Australians were sent to the Vietnam War so pointlessly. It made a simple victory a prolonged and nasty period of needless killing of soldiers on both sides, and as is happening in Ukraine, so many civilian deaths and destruction. Did Putin not read about the Russian invasion of Afghanistan? Futile with the loss of so many Russian armed forces. Armed forces is so anonymous. Young Russian men dreaming of a future. 

This clip is introduced by the original singer John Shumann. The broad Australian accent may be challenging but try to listen. The song never fails to move me to tears make me cry and so well illustrates the horror of war.

Around Australia hundreds of thousands will gather for dawn services at war memorials. Sister and Jo are going to one. We went to one in 2005 as I wrote about here.  

Sunday, April 24, 2022


Some times I am on a roll with my blog and other times not. Today's post is when I am not.

When 20 month old Little Ju visited, her mother had packed a lunch and a dinner for her, along with a snack box comprised of cheese, olives, cherry tomatoes, strawberries and grapes. 

I would have expected Little Ju to go for either the grapes or strawberries first or perhaps the cheese but no, she went for the olives. She ate all the sliced up olives and then moved on to other things. That bodes well for her future eating habits. Or maybe it is the salty taste of olives she likes which does not bode well for the future. I wonder how she would go with fetta cheese.