Thursday, August 23, 2007

Cap't Buzzkill and the Breakup

Buzz, honey, I'm sorry to pull you out of your 'Captains with hatpins' meeting like this, it's just that I really needed to talk to you about something.

Oh ferchrist. 'Ere it comes.

I've been offered a position on another ship Buzz, I'm leaving you.

Ack! Bajesus! I be gobsmacked. Of all the scurvy... lowdown... Lily livered..

Why by thunder? Why?

Well, he just offers me such great opportunities Buzz! We'll be involved in all sorts of legitimate trading opportunities in the West Indies, he's been good friends with my family for years, and well, he's just.. so.. educated.. Buzz.

Educated? Blow me down. EDUCATED? I be educated too ya know!

You took night school Buzz.


The board expelled you when they learned you'd been selling bootleg liquor to minors moonshined yourself in the mixed dorm bathtubs Buzz. Three of those kids got acute alcohol poisoning!

I thought they be just POSING as minors. And anyway, those hypocrites on the board would 'av 'ad nay'r a problem if I'd 'av plundered the grog meself! "Pirates don't brew" they told me. Scoundrels!

Really honey, this is all beside the point. I've made up my mind. It's not that I don't love you, it's just that all this nefarious behavior has to end at some point, and I just don't see you wanting the same things as me. Remember last week when I told you I thought our relationship needed more spark? You bought me a new canon. You just never listen Buzz.

That canon cost me 50 doubloons.


I'm sorry Buzz. I'm leaving now. Too many people will be hurt if I stay.

I be understandin' completely. Allow me tha' honour of sayin' just one more thing.

Of course Buzz.

I hope ye taste good. I wouldna' be wantin' to give acute scallywag poisonin' to tha' crocodile.


Aye Aye! *shove*

Sunday, August 19, 2007

The 'Bow and Leave' Technique

My Mum's great. She has an abundance of artistic and creative talent, cooks a mean Bolognaise, and gives great but often unwarranted advice. Yep, you sure can say a lot of things about my Mum, except for maybe one thing: Her comedic faculties are a little skeewiff.

Don't get me wrong. She laughs a lot. In fact, I've seen the whole team of Kenyon floozies in uncontrollable dinner table hysterics that would rival any 6 year old hearing his first ever fart joke. So, it's not that she doesn't love fun, it's just that she hasn't really been known to make up any jokes. Good ones anyway.

Until last Christmas holidays that is.

It was getting toward the end of a quiet night. Dad had trundled off to bed and Mum and I were spending the last remaining hours finishing off a bottle of red wine and watching Mum's VHS copy of Pride and Prejudice (BBC version of course). As embarrassed as I am to admit it, P&P has become a bit of a security blanket for me over the years. I once saw that a guy that had created a support group on Facebook called 'I know every line to the BBC version of Pride and Prejudice' and I was like 'Oh, what a great idea'. I guess for me it represents all the good things in life: Love, unrequited love, family, intelligence, quick-wittedness, Miss Eliza Bennet... meow.

But most of all: massive, rich, decked out, county estates. With lakes to fish in and horses to appear gallant on. My kingdom for such lavishness. I swear.

Anyway, enough discussion of such things. I can feel what small grasp I have left on my manliness slipping through my callous-free fingertips.

As we were watching the video, I was playfully giving Mum shit about the degradation of the film quality due to it's overuse. 'Dust!' she proclaimed, but I wasn't buying a word of it. Why would dust collect specifically around the area where Darcy asserts how much he 'ardently admires and loves' Lizzy? You can't fool me you old romantic.

During a ball scene, we watched a socially uncomfortable Darcy leave mid conversation by bowing stiffly to his contemporaries and simply walking away.

"Wouldn't that be great?" mused my Mum. "Imagine being at a dinner party and being stuck in a boring conversation. You could just bow, then leave!"

What. A. Concept.

Still rude to be sure, but so noble. Back in Sydney, I spread the word immediately. The Bronte crew thought it was the most inspired thing they'd ever heard of, but then they're easily amused. Particularly when it comes to new inappropriate ways to conduct themselves.

We began practicing the technique at a rather morose barbeque, and everything was progressing nicely until someone deemed to question my behavior after what I assumed was a perfectly executed bow and leave.

"What are you doing?" He asked, looking very confused.

"I'm bowing." I said. "Then leaving. It's a new thing we're doing."

"Well it's weird. And very impolite." He shook his head and walked away.

"Oh fine, just leave then!" I bellowed after him. "No wonder they say gallantry is DEAD!"

I quickly wanted to gesticulate just how much this breakdown of social formalities had affected me, but considering I'd already bowed once, I kinda just turned and skulked away.

My 'turn and skulk' technique definitely needs work.

Friday, August 17, 2007

I still don't get it

Waking up in San Sebastian to find the day outside a bit overcast, we quickly decided against going to the beach. Ryan and I filled in the morning doing the obligatory internet and email thing before quickly getting bored and deciding that we needed to get out of the house. By this stage, our host Morten had groggily entered the lounge room and after a very involved eye rubbing session, suggested we go for a drive. His football training didn't start until five after all. We had wanted to go and check out the Guggenheim museum in nearby Bilbao, and since we did not mind at all being chauffeured around in his brand new, football club provided Mercedes, we happily accepted. To Bilbao sir, and don't spare the mustard!

The Basque region of Spain really is jaw droppingly beautiful. Green rolling hills, pine trees everywhere, and those little tunnels that go through mountains like the ones you see in model train sets.

I tried to take about a million photos, but only too late did I realise that I had stupidly set the camera to 'incredibly blurry'. I should have had it set to 'Awesome pictures to make your friends back home jealous', but what can I say, it's an easy mistake to make.

Truth be told, I didn't really know a great deal about the Guggenheim. If i was asked during Trivial Pursuit two weeks ago in what country it was located, I would have answered 'Germany', quickly followed by a 'Well it sounds German!' remark to deflect any patronising guffaws. After taking in it's stainless steel kitchen-esk exterior, my first impression was that the architect was a bit of a prankster - reason being that the stairs leading to the entrance are the kind whose length is configured so perfectly that they result in being uncomfortably long. You even have to do a feet switcharoo halfway up to give each leg a turn at climbing. Strange thing to notice, hey? It's true, we are a culturally deficit mob of yokels.

But at least we are street wise enough to be visibly afraid when flower-cyclone death is imminent.

The museum was exhibiting an artist called Anselm Keifer that I'd seen before while working at the Art Gallery of NSW, so I immediately began gloating to my comrades at having an extensive taste in cultivated arts. Of course, as soon as I was asked for further information about him I had to reluctantly back down from my effrontery, due to knowing absolutely nothing about him. We were finding it difficult to understand his work too; large metal-bolstered concrete stair structures secured one by one up a high wall. An engineering marvel to be sure, but quite unintelligible to the likes of the yokel party.

Looking at one of his massive, 20ft high collage works, I started to imagine what his neighbours must think when he began putting one of these things together. "Oh Anselm," they'd chuckle, shaking their heads and having another sip of their morning coffee. "What in Gods name are you creating now? Hey Anselm! Quit fucking around and go and trim that hedge like we asked you last week!"

After reading one of the descriptions posted on the wall, I discovered that he lives as a hermit in an old converted factory in Barjac, France. The place has numerous interconnecting warehouses, living quarters and greenhouses that he uses to create these massive constructions. The place has got loads of secret tunnels and rooms connecting the different areas. He has spent the last decade fashioning the place into a living piece of art, piling up fragile concrete structures and letting the elements do the rest. Calls himself an alchemist. Cooool.

I'd probably go a little bit loopy in that environment. I'd start wearing a 24-7 monocle, developing a cackle, and answering the door saying things like "So doctor! We meet again, at last!"

Not ol' Anselm though. He's still keeping it real, driving his big construction cranes (I assume, otherwise he's just REALLY strong) and waxing lyrical about life.

The book, the idea of a book or the image of a book, is a symbol of learning, of transmitting knowledge.. I make my own books to find my way through the old stories.

-- Anselm Kiefer

Thursday, August 16, 2007


Speaking of Copenhagen's general aversion to anything non-law-abiding, have a crack at this:

Can you spot the two things wrong with it? Here I'll help you.. you're taking too long.

1. People would not idly stand by without trying to immediately turn ducks into duck pancakes. Even if they were Danish. As everyone knows, it's contrary to human nature.
(formula being: life = willingness to eat duck pancakes x Pi)

2. People would not be smiling at this blatant disregard for the Dansk pedestrian road processes! They would be CHASING them with STICKS and singing viking war songs loud enough to chill the blood in your veins. Believe me, it's fuckin frightful.

No disrespect to Hans Christian Anderson, or indeed, any of his subsequent offspring; I'm sure they're all delightful. But it has to be said here and now that the man was A CHARLETON.

I think the abundance of evidence here clearly speaks for itself.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Four fucked cars and a skatepark

Auntie warning - indiscriminate drug references and usage of big words like 'dichotomy' that know one really uses anymore but have the ability to give you the appearance of being a bit of a wanker at dinner parties. Not that I'd know.

Copenhagen is a city of opposites, a hotbed of dichotomy if you will (bam). The scale is skewed between an obstinately law abiding public spurning even the most pedantic of criminal discretions, and the hash hazed underbelly of the little suburb republic known as 'Christania town'.

Our interest in this differential anomaly spurred us into further research. The public had to be informed! Unfortunately, our overall knowledge of the scientific method was a little rusty, so we had to improvise a little. This improvisation basically meant we hung out in all the seediest areas of town and jaywalked a lot. Wouldn't you know it? At the time we weren't even aware that we were conducting field research! That's called avoiding the observer uncertainty my friends. Our lot don't do things by halves.

Firstly, let me describe jaywalking in Copenhagen. Happy as Larry, you arrive at the road in question, humming along to 'Road Trippin' by the Chilli Peppers because the Eftpos machine you just used was called a 'Blu Chippen', so you started substituting that into the lyrics for your companion's supposed amusement (she WAS laughing, so it was funny, ok?). Everyone is waiting by the side of the road, patiently awaiting the little green man to do his walking thing. Due to the street being completely empty, you decide to make like Young MC and bust a move. Whamo! Everyone turns on you faster than a backbencher in a prostitute scandal. They pursue you for streets, and it is only through utilising your expertise in Judo that you manage to beat your non-too-hasty retreat. Immediately afterwards you get a "thug fo' life" tattoo on your bicep, and feel quite chuffed at the penmanship and the way the colour of it matches your eyes.

Then there's Ye Olde Christiania town. We'd gotten wind that it was a marvelous place to pick up some embroidery gems and that the local fauna was quite charming, so you can imagine our horror when we discovered some of the local dignitaries openly selling blocks of hashish in full view of anyone who happened to look. Biting off chunks for sale with their blemished incisors no less! In their defence, there did seem to be a very strong anti HARD drug stance, as we discovered when a foolhardy wastoid deemed to presume that our chunk biting trafficker might be holding anything *stronger* than the sticky brown stuff. The uncomfortable atmosphere that ensued following his inquiry positively gave us the willies.

Fortunately we managed to regain some of our composure by regaling a young gent skateboarding with uncharacteristic skill in the local skateboarding emporium located not far from our former scene of barbary. Patrick, one of the more vivacious in our fellowship, did not appear to be joining in with the general euphoria and seemed quite inconsolable after the incident.

"What's up dude?" One of our party inquired of him. "Feelin bummed or somethin?"

Patrick eyes blurred dreamily. "I used to skate." he explained sadly. "Probably would have been better than that dude too, back in the day."

Ah yes. That old chestnut. Numerous times have the vintage 'Thrasher' and 'Skateboarder' magazines showing Patrick's younger motif been presented to us during the early hours of a particularly intensive research trip. Quite impressive really; Unequivacably radical was his form, his demeanor authority challenging.

As it turned out however, our chum was creating a devilish ruse. His dispondance was simply a mechanism for which to present us his whimsy.

"I mean, whose bright idea was it to take me to a skate park?" He bellowed in Australian twang. "I'm bloody turning 30 in under five hours! Here's this little blonde dude systematically ripping the skate park a new one, and I'm stumbling around goin 'Got any hard drugs mate?'"

Don't stress Patty, I'm pretty certain that even at 14 you were still a crack toting scumbag. There there.

Names, places, faces and facts have been changed to protect, well, me really.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Don't look.. I'm hideous!

Inspired as I was by the lovely Miss Bloom's foray into pop art inspired cartoonery, I thought it wise to show my own efforts in contorting the public image of myself:

That's right, read it and weep suckers. The story behind this frankensteinal monstrosity was that I was attempting to demonstrate to my friend Leah the intricacies of a particular outfit I had planned for a friend's engagement party. What's that? Well yes, OF COURSE it was during work hours, as if I would have bothered otherwise?

Anyway, I suppose it had the desired effect. She immediately printed it out onto A3 paper and stuck it up in her team's shared cubicle space, thereby turning it into their unofficial mascot. For all I know my poor characture is currently sporting 3 cheap plastic darts sticking out of his obliviously smiling cranium.

Everything happens for a reason I guess.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Once this baby hits 88 mph

Marty and the Doc used to get in all sorts of zany hjinx when it came to getting jiggy with that ol' chestnut, the space-time continuum. Steal a Sports Almanac here, criminal infested death town trouble there. If I had a dollar for every time THAT'S happened.

It was during a quiet moment recently reflecting on Back to the Future that I starting to think about what the world would have been like had certain plants never been invented by Issac Newton or by those guys from the curiosity show. Imagine the possibilities!

You know, evolution is a crazy old girl sometimes, and the kaleidoscopic forms that life takes is generally a reflection on the economy of design and the ability survive and reproduce, rather than whether a particular species will tickle the interest of the human race. Or so say the science nerds in those Washington think tanks (perhaps more eloquently however, or even differently, how the hell should I know?).

In any case, I'm calling their bluff. I've managed to invent an amazingly complex time machine out of some old boxes I found in my garage. Cool huh? I'm a fricken genius!! Who knew?? My plan is thus: Go back in time and remove some of the more useful species of plants to gauge the effect it has on the human race, then go forwards in time and pick myself up a dope hoverboard. I'll be back for high fives faster than you can say biscuits.

These are the plants I'm targeting:

Davey's Top 5 Plants - without which the world would be a terribly different place.

Plant 1: The Cotton Plant
Potential Substitutes: Polyester, Spandex, Taffeta
World difference potential: Substantial, particularly in under-garmentry.

Plant 2: Rice Grass
Potential Substitutes: Polenta, Cous Cous, Turnip Mash
World difference potential: Drastic, due to the lukewarm reception of Sweet and Sour Pork on a bed of polenta. Turnip mash crackers not such a big hit. World unrest sure to follow.

Plant 3: The Chilli Plant
Potential Substitutes: Horseradish, Malic Acid, Hot Warheads (myth?)
World difference potential: Hot to very hot. Keep in mind we would also be missing that episode of the Simpsons when Homer goes on an spirit-animal guided acid bender due to eating to world's hottest chilli. The mind boggles!

Plant 4: Cacao Tree / Cocoa Bean
Potential Substitutes: Carob, which is a crap substitute at best. Remember when Mum used to do the ol' switcharoo thing thinking you wouldn't notice? Nice one Mum. How about next time you don't make it taste like shit?
World difference potential: Just imagine. Close your eyes and conjure up all the times over all the years that you've blissed out over chocolate. All the different, varied varieties. Now think about Charlie and the Chocolate factory. SCARY huh? Mind you, when that fat kid fell in the drink it was hilarious. Swim fatty!

Plant 5: Tobacco
Potential Substitutes: Marijuana (obviously), Corn Silk, Banana Skins
World difference potential: Bars become completely unusable due to the now unmasked odors of stale beer and BO.

Plants I'm still considering: Coca, Rubber Tree, Poppy, Chernobyl, Robert.

Wish me luck. Let me know if you want me to bring you back any dinosaurs. x

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Ladies and Gentlemen..

Introducing, my mate Will:

A face only a mother could love you say. Well I've asked her, and she's on the fence.

The above is his inspired getup for his upcoming gig at Splendor in the Grass in Byron. Will's quite proud really. He was telling me that this is now the second animal suit that he has in his collection.

"Although it is somewhat of a cliché to dress like a chicken," he said "I simply couldn't go past the amazing design of this number."

I suspect that it will have just as fine an impact as last year's Panda suit my friend, and will garner you just as many hugs. Good luck to you sir, and god speed.

Friday, August 3, 2007

To Do List

1. Fall out of love
2. Buy Socks

I can't work our whether this is self indulgent and depressing or emancipating. Might buy the socks first and see how I'm travelling.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Formin' a bikie gang

How do you say 'really fucking want one' in French?

You can't reaaaally see it, but this bike is tiny. Like, comes up to my thighs tiny.

I know that my road-cred will probably drop dramatically after people realise that its only 50cc's, but I'm willing to trade all that in to look like a highly intelligent circus racing chimp when I go to the shops for milk.

All that and more, actually.

It's all in a name

As you well know I am fond of pondering complex issues whenever I have a free moment, which led me to asking Will the following question: If people from Melbourne are called Melbournians, what are people from Wagga Wagga called?

"Either John or Beryl" came his reply.

Preemptive apologies to any Johns or Beryls.