Archive for April, 2006

Steve McCurry live and for free

Well, all things photography tend to interest me. Its great to note that Steve McCurry is speaking at the National Gallery of Victoria, on Tuesday 02 May 2006. Its a free seminar, spanning from 7pm – 10pm, and bookings are essential, so call (03) 8662 1555 now!

Who is this Steve McCurry bloke? Well, he shoots for National Geographic. And isn’t that where all photographers want to land at?

The price of bananas

Was in Victoria Market yesterday doing the usual weekly shopping. I chance upon bananas, you know, the yellow skin fruit that is running short of in Australia. Guess what was the price of 1 kg of it yesterday? A whooping $10 a kg.

I can’t afford those kind of prices for a fruit, but I will bet my bottom dollar that the banana farmer is not getting the majority of that $10 a kg for his fruit. Too bad there is no such thing as canned bananas. I’ll have to stick with dried bananas for the moment, even that may raise in price, eventually.

Extravagant council members?

Crazy credit spree, according the the headlines in today’s Herald Sun by council members. Well, I can think of one solution to solve this; set a hard credit limit for the combination of credit cards. Better, credit limit for the entire financial year. Therefore, once the limit is reached, they can’t spend more.

In my opinion, as long as they don’t spend beyond the budget … I’m okay with it. How they decide to spend their budget is their business … I mean someone elected these people, right? Although spending $1300 per night on a hotel room is an extreme.

I did some calculation … $132056.64 divided by 58 cards comes to about $2277 per card per year. I can simply assume there are some responsible card holders in the council as well as some irresponsible ones.

ANZAC Day in Melbourne

It’s ANZAC day today across Australia, a day of remembrance of those now gone, their mates that returned as well all their friends and families.

Wars affect all. War is not glorious. For the record, I’m not for wars.

Looking around for quotes, I found this:

hordes of innocent men, women, children and even animals suffer indescribable privations as a result of war. Mothers are separated from children, husbands are separated from wives, brothers are separated from sisters

Some people argue that conflict and war cannot be avoided because they are expressions of human nature. I am realistic enough to realize that it would be foolhardy to sit down and do nothing when aggressors are brutally destroying innocent lives on the basis of unrealistic and unfounded claims, but we must always bear in mind that war is at best a last resort to maintain peace. However, if we believe that war is inevitable, then we will wage war.

Source: Buddhism For The Millenium.

When I woke up this morning, and turned on the TV, they had this song playing titled “I was only 19”.

You should have a read of it here (it includes annotations.)

Here’s a little bit:

God help me, I was only nineteen.
A four week operation when each step could mean your last one on two legs
It was a war within yourself.
But you wouldn’t let your mates down til they had you dusted off
So you closed your eyes and thought about something else.

Source

The song is a tribute to the many young soldiers that were sent to Vietnam during the Vietnam war.

One thing to be heard throughout the day today will be the Bugle call, the Last Post. It was played this morning at the Dawn Service across Australia, as well as Gallipoli.
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The comedy Gala

I watched this on the television last night, mostly because I found it by accident, and it was on channel 10 scheduled just before they telecasted the formula 1 Grand Prix. It was hilarious!

I seems to remember watching this on tele last year, and disliking parts of it, mostly the comedian who was rude and getting on my nerves. I think it was Jason Bryne who filled those shoes. This year, it was much much better. I enjoyed the variety the different comedians brought on to the stage, but I think, Adam Hills was the best. I enjoyed his humour as well as his quirky remarks.

The festival, the comedy one, is still on, til the 7th May. Some say, the best thing in life is free and its true! The Big Laugh Out is being held at the Federation Square. I haven’t been able to find the full schedule for it, so anyone out there knows anything about it, let me know.

comedy is hard.

at the suggestion of a reader i went to the standup show “be my (kent) valentine” at the portland hotel. kent valentine seems a young comic still finding his feet. his 45 minute monologue was certainly funny in places, particularly when addressing the awkwardness of relationships and sex, but when at other times it ventured into matters emotional, the territory seemed more uncharted, at times almost embarrassingly painful.

“be my (kent) valentine” is the story of the year he spent unsuccessfully trying to find love after getting dumped by his girlfriend. surely a difficult premise, and one not quite managed by the comedian. before he makes it to the big leagues kent will have to overcome two kinds of nerves. the first and probably easiest is that of doing standup to a room full of people. i personally think this would be one of the scariest things in the world, and power to him for making a go of it, but his nerves in this regard were palpable and did intrude upon the experience.

the other kind of nervousness is much more difficult to overcome, and it was about the emotional core of his story. at the centre of the story he was telling was a painful breakup, but the tension between his love for his ex, and her no longer caring for him, was handled tenatively and nervously, like he was unsure how appropriate a thing it is to be talking about. while that would ordinarily be a reasonable concern, the middle of a standup routine is no place for such self-doubt.

if you’re a keen fan of young melbourne comedy with a spare $20 in your pocket then maybe check out the show, but if you’re just an average punter looking for a night out, i’d give kent valentine a couple of years to mature as a performer before adding him to a comedy festival ‘must-see’ list.

High fuel prices

Last year, I wrote about high fuel prices. And now, the prices have really really gone up. I mean its $1.35 today! Is this going to continue? If so, I will seriously have to cut back on my other expenses just so I can continue driving a car.

I am already taking the train and car-pooling as much as possible. If the price of petrol goes higher, I can foresee people asking for salary increases and spending less on other things.

I am back to comparing petrol prices on the RACV petrol price watch page. I am feeling so poor!

artmelbourne 2

well i can now proudly report i have exhibited artwork in the same show as howard arkley, dr. seuss, picasso, damien hirst, and escher. work by all of these artists is on show as part of the previously mentioned mega art show artmelbourne06.

the vip opening night was a cracker. punters paid $40 a head for generous and good free booze, and i spied john saffran and a couple of channel ten newsreaders in the throng. the atmosphere was buzzing and sales were brisk, at least at our stall. it’s more of a shopping mall than a museum, it’s possible to buy artworks and leave with them. the blank space left on the wall is soon occupied by another painting and the cycle continues.

an article in the age today suggested that the show was trying to rectify a slightly tainted reputation by injecting fresh talent, and i guess the inclusion of me and my street art cohorts is a manifestation of that. art is about taste, and i must say there’s some stuff there that’s not to my taste, but the thing is there is a lot of stuff. i’ve been there two days and i’m sure i still haven’t seen it all.

the show’s on until sunday at the exhibition buildings. more info here.

HIA home show

The HIA home show is exhibiting at the Melbourne Convention Centre again. I think this year the show is later than last year because of the Commonwealth games.

I hope this year’s show will be better if not, as good as last year’s. I managed to snarl myself a bargain last year. I was hoping to find discount coupons in the Herald Sun but it seems they are not doing that this year. Pity. It was a 2-for-1 offer. This year, the ticket offers are for online purchases through their website. 50% off for weekdays sounds like an absolute bargain … unless the show is a dog, then it becomes a total waste of money!

Just a little something to you

Just thought i’d point two things designed for you guys and gals out there that read the Metroblogging Melbourne blog.

The first is the Melbourne Blog’s Flickr Group.
If you’d like to contribute photos taken by you, join the group! Your photos will appear in the Photos stream to the right hand side of the blog.

Secondly, each and every Metroblogging blog has a brand new “Suggest a story” link for you guys to suggest things to us :)

Enjoy! :D

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