Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Damo Gone

For those of you that missed it Damo is gone today :( or possibly :) it all really depends on how you feel about the man that would bring peace to the world:

To America

All these people leaving man, it sucks. But you know from time to time you get some back like Callie yay.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Head Fuck

So today I got my invite to my highschool reunion. It's going to be weird seeing all those freaks again. Real weird. Like seeing all the dudes who I would trust 100% still just by virtue of I knew them early enough and went through enough shit together to relax around them. You seem to meet less and less once you hit uni.
And girls I never slept with, or even kissed. I picked up one girl from my highschool and she left like 6 weeks later.
I high school reunion. And I have hair like MC Hammer now. (I wish) but at any rate I'm not actually going to tidy it up by the time October rolls around.
Another head fuck is Damo leaves tomorrow. I never react well to my home environment being changed, you may have noticed my posts have slowed down. This is because I have decided to write my alternate biography in the form of a zeen. I hope to time it's release in time with the time that I leave the country and go zazenning and possibly hanging with the Wu-han clan. What's that, yes, travel plans. Lucid travel plans.
More of a headfuck is today when logging into my email I thought about Andy and Jerry (who are my password) and I thought about it for the first time in ages and there I was looking at an email about Jerry's impending departure.
I can't FUCKING believe it. Where does the time go.
Anyway the next headfuck is I got tickets to Eric Clapton, now some or most of you may not find Eric Clapton cool but please Appreciate that to me it's like. It's like someone you know who is Christian has a ticket to go see Jesus.
Now all I gotta do is hope he doesn't die between now and the concert.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Take it Easy

So I set foot in the fucking doctors and lay it all out I say 'I think I'm suffering from Hypocondria' I hit him with all the symptoms. He explains to me using his best bedside manner that these are all non-specific symptoms.
They are symptoms in me because I never get fucking tired, my eyes focus fine normally, I don't know shit about hair shedding because that's always been the case when my hair is long, chest pains are new too. So he checks me up and finds me in perfect health.
'Wanting to sleep is the bodies way of explaining that you are tired.' he explains to me, and I walk out of the doctors feeling better. Yesterday I start writing a zeen and my anxiety is replaced with boredom. Boredom. I don't feel like doing shit. Even blogging, and I realise for almost 12 months now I've filled every hour of every day with something to do. I am fucking busy.
This pisses me off because I don't feel busy. I feel bored.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Another Day another Glorious Letter

There is some dude paid (I assume) to read Carmen's emails to me, so when she writes stuff from East Timor it comes through with the tag (SEC= Unclassified) I wonder what kind of shit goes through the military email. Still it is wonderful to be connected to a country that has such different living standards to mine own.
So here's the plan, when I told bryce I was tired yesterday (which took some effort because Bryce is actually fucking busy what the fuck do I get exhausted from blogging?) he said 'you are not well' and took my Vanilla Ice head into his bosom and rocked me back and forth. It was comforting.
But after bryce ruled out holidaying in Yass, because it's too far away. Even if it does have a bakery. I went back to Plan A: The expensive Plan. Go stay here I think being a zen monk for a couple of weeks might be just the contrast I need. I met the abbot of this zen dera last time I was there and he was super cool mcschool. I would be drinking tea and he would say 'please be careful that cup is 900 years old' just to shit me. When I asked him who was paying for the restoration of a hanging scroll he said 'me'.
I've seen the hall for sitting/kneeling and meditating all day. I don't even mind if I have to go begging alms.
While digging for the brochure though (zen temples have brochures in Japan) I found Brenton's letter that I would like to relate to you now:

What's going on? Why were you late?
Shigeno said last night that I had to go to her home room so I did and as usual she did her best to embarass the fuck out of me. First she informed the class about everything I've done and will be doing who gives a fuck? Then she made me stand in front of the class and in Japanese, explain what I did on new years and over the holidays. I said I didn't want to but she like pulled the chair back so I had to get up. Then I decided fuck this! and I made absolutely no attempt to speak any sentences in I Japanese I said stuff like PTO...
...like one word -> netta (sleep) bideo o mitta (watched video) and didn't smile once. I must have looked so DARK. and I was. Then when Shigeno realised I wasn't going to be any fun, she let me sit down and I whispered/mouthed kira!!!i (I hate her) to Yuka & one of her friends & the smiled & nodded.

How was last night?

And so ends the exchange. Shigeno is a prize curiousity of nature, and really bad with the exotic in not making them feel like a freakshow. I came to love Shigeno when I started thinking of her as an animal and not a human being. Yuka was stacked.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006


It's hard for me to admit, but I am so fucking tired. I even booked in to see a GP, and I fucking hate doctors. I was watching the documentary citizen king about the life of Martin Luther King Jr. that man, what a fucking life. They made a point about how every moment of every day someone was calling him, asking him to do something, go here, say this, speak to these people. He died age 39 but the autopsy showed up the heart of a 60 year old. A powerful orator, one of his last speaches he dropped the remark 'I don't care about longevity' and within a week he was dead. But that speach even when he was so exhausted he's pretty much puffing as he speaks, still manages to be rousing and moving.
At the quakers, where I went because I fucking needed to go and unwind and relax, I was thrilled and I mean fucking thrilled when the guy right next to me stood up to share and he shared two things, one his thoughts on the life of Martin Luthor King and two a lengthy analogy of life and rivers, I fucking love rivers and have tried to make my life analogous to a river.
His story was that still water has depth. In teaching statistics you can say a 'river has 15cm as it's average depth can you drown?' the answer is of course, the average conceals the depth and where the water is shallowest, the rapid moving water that can be where 90% of our lives are spent. But water needs to be still to reflect and reflection requires depth.
I like it I took a lot out of it.
I like to entertain the fantasy that I don't stress but since Roberto said of my 20k stuff up 'well that's neither here nor there' and my job security came flooding back, something snapped in me and I realised how highly strung I'd been. I'm going to make an effort to unwind. I'm even thinking about spending my annual leave in a monastary in Japan in Zen meditation. A real cleanser. I've been running on overdrive for too long now. I'll see what the fucking doctor says.
Burnout doesn't hit you till it hits you.
And at the unrespectable hour of 8:50 I'm going to bed.
that's relaxation

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Open your mind at Melbourne Uni Open Day

I was riding past Melbourne Uni, cutting down Swanston St as I often do on a Sunday on my way to REW to pick up the latest hopeful basketballers and got ticked off because I realised that it was Melbourne Uni's open day. Meaning there'd probably be some bouncy castle on the basketball court to ensure that Melbourne Uni got the best possible applicants from Australia and beyond*.
A sick part of me likes to laugh at the students turning up to open days, those young dreaming hopeful kids who's parents have told them they can do anything and to dream big and all that. It's true what their parents say. But shelling out for private schooling is a lot cheaper than full fee University places and for a lot of them open day is like thinking you're being hit on but it turns out the person is just being plain friendly**.
Yeah because Melbourne Uni for a lot of people is the first place where the buck suddenly stops and you can't get in, even if you're parents said you could. But I mean of course you can you may have to do the hard yards in another institution and transfer and shit. Because for every person that worked hard and deserved to get into a good university theres three smart arses that didn't work at all and went to a good university because they could and get kicked out after first year or possibly never turn up.
The best part of Melbourne University Open day by far (and by far the biggest cock tease) is the tour de residential colleges. Or the Collage de College. Which way to go let's start at Mary's, you walk into Mary's, Mary's is the kind of place that has balloons you walk around and inspect the facilities then you go to the common room for some scones and everyone hugs you and tells you you're great and then you hold hands in a circle and sing some songs. Feeling good you cruise next door, or across the lawn to Newman.
At Newman's you cruise the facilities and wonder why anyone would go here at all. You ask someone and they scratch their head trying to come up with an answer. They don't but you can see a loyal family relative nodding their head with approval. To this day I still haven't heard of Newman doing anything, achieving anything or really anything about Newman at all. Feeling Confused you head the long way next door to Queens.
At Queens you take a tour and get to see the small rooms, the dark rooms and the small and dark rooms. The dining hall is impressive though and you have some scones which taste like chicken. The people are ugly but have gel in their hair so they are making an effort. It's not too friendly like St Mary's and it's not too arrogant like Newman and the building is beautiful. You head next door to Hilda's.
You initially gag at the ugliest building ever crafted by the hands of man but head in anyway it is a shame this 70's monstrosity is wedged between Ormond and Queens and not between Kath & Kim. One advantage of the 70's design is that the rooms when you see them are actually quite accomodating and well lit and comfortable. There are no scones though at Hilda's just a free tinny and the option of fucking a bush pig or being fucked by a bush pig. You try to pass but end up taking option B. The advantage of Hilda's is that it at least has the decency to not dress up as lamb like Queens it is unashamed mutton. The dudes are ugly but have grease in their hair and the girls aren't complaining because if they do they get harassed till they leave. I'm all for self determination but the advantages of a student run college are... well maybe someday a Saturday Night Live sketch will be made about it.
Looking for some cleansing scones you head into Ormond. If you can find your way through the beautiful Garden. There is a clock tower that goes off all the time when you ask about it on the tour they say 'only third years can go there' at Ormond you see the two full size billiard tables and the gym which is pretty impressive. You can have some scones but the students in the dining hall look down on you for taking charity.
You head to JCR, you write your birthdate YYYYMMDD instead of DDMMYYYY on the tour form an they expel you even though you are the descendant of the current president and the founding father and won your local rowing regatta after three crewmates passed out, you never find out what the scones are like.
Which brings you to trinity. Everyone is wearing academic gowns. Everyone is a fuckhead. You try to be friendly and joke on the tour this confuses them. You see rooms that make Queen's look luxurious. Social rooms you discover have membership fees to get access to some of the exclusive facilities like Television. After a quick calculation you discover it costs $450 extra dollars just to walk down a corridor in Trinity. There is a trust that buys and sells paintings at Trinity that is of no use to you. At trinity they look down on you when you eat a scone for both accepting charity and using the wrong cream fork and scone separating knife.
Now if you are fucking superhuman and have a head screwed onto your shoulders you head to the non-crescent colleges, by now you've probably spent 12 hours taking tours and trying to figure out where the $11k goes a year.
UC I can't tell you about, I never saw it I never seen it and hardly ever met anyone from there. Those I did seemed pretty cool and I hear the crescent colleges don't put as much effort into ignoring you if you go to UC.
Next is IH at IH there are no scones, there is some weird shit to eat. As in IH insider I know one of two things will happen to you a) you will be off put by the creepy, dorky asian students talking and laughing at the entrance but reassured that there is a decent Aussie bloke, girl opposite them at the entrance. or b) you are offput by the loud ungainly drunken Australian barbarian but reassured by the studious and conformist christian Malaysians opposite them at the entrance. As a result you spend the tour trying to figure out how your tour guide endures the cultural melting pot. I also as an insider know that the former Deputy Head payed the Open day volunteers simultaneously making sure you met the least charismatic and affable representatives of the college, she also allowed an oversupply of tour guides making sure simultaneously that not only do you tour with someone unnattractive or a dork you will also be outnumbered by them when you do.
The rooms are good though, everything is spacious and the grounds are well laid out. You may even have an asian fetish, or know you don't have the personality to get into a crescent college.
At anyrate you leave worrying about what you ate and confused and head to Whitley! aka 'the donut' and what do those crazy clowns have? donuts not scones! hilarious. You take a tour of the campus because you are curious. Everyone there reminds you of back home which is either reassuring or offputting. You don't love it you don't hate it.
So to save you time here is the residential college list I would recommend it's on a scale that almost inversely correlates with prestige, the objective of my rating is to measure how 'liveable' the colleges are and the likelihood you'll grow as a person rather than degenerate:
1. St Mary's it's just plain friendly, and yes does allow foreigners too computer science students. It's on the crescent so you don't have to feel insecure either.
2. UC/Whitley not my personal preference but if you can't hack the international thing it would be remiss of me to recommend IH before these two.
3. International House people who advocate crescent colleges talk about networks and shit, but they always forget the entire Australian economy is traded on a daily basis, all you need to do is make one good friend with an international student who's parants own a power plant or hospital in China and you can throw that arguement out. This is the next best thing to living in a bunch of different countries even if it does include Singapore.
4. Queens, you have to hand it to them their grounds are better than trinity and somehow they don't manage to be disgustingly arrogant, and if somebody shits on your floor, rubs their genitals in your face at night, throws out your clothes and sends you an envolope glued shut with their come there's half a chance they'll be expelled from Queens.
5. Ormond, in the largest college there's gotta be some that aren't dicks right? close to Queens, closer to Trinity.
6. St Hilda's, Queens without the polish and if somebody shits on your floor, rubs their genitals in your face at night, throws out your clothes and sends you an envolope glued shut with their come there's no chance in hell they'll be expelled from Hilda's infact they'll probably be the next president. I recommend Hilda's to anybody who wants to develope a drug dependancy, try sexual harassment on and recieve recognition but at least Hilda's is something which...
7. Newman ....is not. It's not anything so why bother. I have no idea what would cause anybody to put Newman down as a preference, it's the fucking 7up of the college world but what it is we may not know at least it isn't...
8. ...Trinity, if you end up here don't panic, just calmly place a plastic bag over your head and go to bed, when you wake up in the morning the world will have one less problem.

I realise of course that maybe that last statement is a little harsh, I have met decent citizens from trinity who generally agree there's something just wrong in the bricks of that place. Incedently I applied to Hilda's for first preference as I'd figured I'd be going to RMIT and that the sexual harassment cases would make Hilda's unpopular, I was wrong and ended up at IH which possibly saved my life on many many levels.

*South East Asia
**It's not of course you, it's your attitude. You will have a good time wherever you go you're parents have probably just given you the false impression it does matter and that the best go to Melbourne Uni. The problem is really those that do get in because they go on thinking this for the rest of their lives. Employers really don't care.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

People who sell people to people who need people

Went to see a double feature last night in support of LIFE which is a Refugee Camp Literacy program that started up in recent times. It's good stuff.
Double feature was Chappelle's block party and Rize. Both really positive stories, both really touching, my homie Amrish was digging it and singing along often. Chappelle did say 'if you want to get out of the Ghetto you gotta knuckle down and rap or play basketball or some shit.' But you got dudes like Haitian Wyclef Jean who taught himself english in a public library.
When FLN is closed Zaman and I hit the Fitzroy library and they are great fucking places. Me I want to curl up and read childrens books because they have all the awesome pictures, the very hungry caterpillar, avocado baby, where's wally these are the exotic reading experiences a library promises me but you know there's a whole huge section of ESL books and adult study aids that yeah Wyclef is right you can get yourself into a library and study and dream and make it happen for you. There's so many great public services that aren't utilised.
But that's off track. Reparations! Fucking the black slaves contribution to the US Economy by working 'for free' on plantations is when adjusted for inflation a STUPENDOUS amount of money, monies the african american people are entitled to but just isn't there. So the interim solution is to not pay it.
Now I envision anarchy should trillions of dollars be handed suddenly into the economy to a demographic that has been denied equal opportunity for most of their existence in the country. SO by no means would I suggest it is really possible to just pay out reparations but at least, at least create the elite schools, offer the scholarships and I mean to some extent these have been done already but it ain't good enough the African Americans need 'advantage' it is only right and just that they be given a boost into becoming the players and decision makers of tomorrow.
That being said when I have friends talking about the 'squandering' of welfare by the aboriginals they need to think about how fucking stupid that equation is...
Our entire economy is built on the land and resources European settlers misappropriated by simply declaring the aboriginal people don't legally fucking exist. Their fucking religion is reduced to mythology as well, we put chains and poles in Uluru (yes I climbed it the conquoring white person couldn't resist) demolished national parks so we could run one of the laziest and unsustainable economies of the world and desire more stuff.
So here's what I propose, tax reform to land tax, if you don't know why I'm a land tax fiend click on the earthsharing link, anyway put tax on the land and instead of all this 'we recognise the traditional owners' bullshit, I mean what does being a traditional owner entitle you to. Anyway have like a 2-3% tax go as reparations to the indiginous communities. That's a lot of fucking welfare, maybe even substantial enough to actually have an effect on the poverty stricken indigenous communities. But I say communities what I mean is having that money channeled through a seperate government, no more squandering money on 'administration' flying consultants out to remote communities in national parks for fishing trips, but some self determining body that can sit down and say, what services do we need to give us the advantages, do we need to advertise to combat the stereotypes?
I mean Chappelle's block party made me jealous, it was a party the white's could never throw and never have, the meaning and the spirit isn't there. And it's all positive, yet in Australia you don't have wabbo's white people imitating aboriginals, infact in the city most aboriginals you know are probably claiming to be Phillipino or Indonesian.
I know you can look at ATSIC disbanding but I mean any organisation that isn't given proper funding and support, that doesn't have leaders representitive of the communities and has to go with the begging bowl everytime it wants to fix a problem identified it's fucked from square one. I'm saying deliver the cash and resources, s constitution and get some competence into tackling the issues one at a time. Be generous enough to achieve compromise and not have outrageous demands as convenient kindling for divisive fire.
More over who cares if they wast the money buying fubu wear for the community or other such folly, they are fucking entitled to a share in the wealth we Europeans just took from them.
My brother has a cake he hasn't eaten yet. So it's right for me to eat it and when he get's angry offer him .07% of it as welfare.
Ya basta.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Rising Star/Fading Star

For all those that have missed me as a blooming starlet since the heady days of Race Around the Corner, I make my long awaited return to the limelight on Saturday Night on the Dating Show More Amore show goes to air @ 9.30 on Channel 31. I can't recall a single thing I said on the show but my housemate thought I was funny, and Dave the director gave me the stunning review 'good, I'm hungry where's the pizza' If you know me extra well come over to my place and watch on our black box recorder to artificially boost the ratings of the show. My contact details will not be provided.

The Material World

I apologise, I have painted myself as something I am not. I obsess over my image and probably do so more than anyone else I know. So I'm sorry if I gave you the impression I was otherwise. Fact is I need to be beautiful, all the time.
That being said I know that Money does not equal happiness but due to a typo this week I cost the company $20k in revenue over the course of a month. I pushed a 7 instead of a 9 when updating a price list and it all cascaded from there.
That being done while I may not care for the material world and have more spiritual and philosophical goals that guide my life I can appreciate that a lot of people do care about the material world so I feel incredibly bad about losing that money.
The best part by far though is having to wait 4 days for my manager to get back to the office to reprimand me.
Fuck man, shit.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Sprung Mofo

Today I slept in till 8.21 what a Sunday sleep in. I normally don't like sleeping past 7, but that's only because on a Monday I get up at 7. If I don't have a productive weekend I feel like I've thrown away a whole weekend.
But that's crazy, when you work 9-5 (and I am considered eccentric for actually going home at 5) in winter work can give the impression that it is your life, for many people this is true. So when Spring comes through it is like my life fucking doubles. Not waking up in the dark. Not going home in the dark.
By leaving work at 5 (4.30 on tuesdays to go teach and learn with Zaman) I still got at least three hours day to do other shit that's important to me like going to dinner with friends, basketball with foreigners, 'working' on scripts 'n shit.
Yet the weekend is all about rest. I shouldn't put myself under pressure to try and live on a weekend because kicking back and chizmolakin is what living should be all about.
I'm living in topsy turvy land. At work I sit around with not much to do even when I have 8 or 10 projects on the go. I don't regard myself as lazy it's just nothing takes enough time to do to warrant working a whole 8 hours a day. I have even become a PA to a marketing colleague of sorts and I don't know how she keeps so fucking busy.
The most she ever manages to offload to me is 20 minutes work a day. leaving me with 3 or 4 hours. So I get most of my rest at work. Then I go home and do shit for all the other orgnisations I'm involved in and I don't have enough hours in the day as well as getting in some chizmolakin time and 8 hours of sleep.
I have recently started living more selfishly - ie trying to make life easier for me and you know there's nothing wrong with that gotta look after yourself before you can help out anyone else safely.
But yeah I've hit a problem. I already earn more money than I need (justified by how much money I waste every year) and my savings are good. My work is too easy my personal life well I was saying yesterday 'When I get good at Capoeira I don't know how I'll contain my explosiveness' because my life is pretty exciting. I hardly get to watch TV. Yet it's not exciting enough to not have a blog obviously.
The solution to my dilemma is easy though. Just get a mortgage, that way I can be a wage slave for 30-40 years and stop complaining unless I get a car too. Then I can complain about petrol and big brother.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

It's hard to find a word that rhymes with Capoeira

Lima, Sabrina, North Carolina? Jimmy Pop have cured me of the asiatic desire to be a black man. His master crafted lyrics always remind me of exactly what I am, a juvenile, bored, wealthy, white male. Combine that with the double whammy of 'who cares' FNM film clip DVD and black is the old black if you know what I'm saying.
Which is as unintelligible as true G-money gangsta talk cuz. That's because in any period of self discovery one emerges a new and beautiful butterfly and thats just it. Here I am and I am beautiful.
So I went to my first lesson of the Afro Brazillian dance/martial art capoeira tonight having only previously read about it from books. Who the fuck reads books? pussy's. Yeah. And I am a pussy. And pussy is beautiful. A beautiful butterfly pussy that walked into Capoeira and loved it.
Admittedly I shredded the soles* off my feet, got dizzy and wore out my shoulders in a class that was loosely interpreted as 'beginner' but I relished being thrown in the deep end. Paul Ruben's quote of the moment 'If you're gonna walk on thin ice you may as well dance' So I pushed myself through as much as I could and it was good to finally use my upper body for something.
So certainly I am now a kelis fan. Play basketball and have signed up for more Capoeira but I am soon to undergo an image makeover that celebrates my whiteness and early 90's grunge heratage.
Eat shit.

*Daud asks rio 'How do you say this in english' to Rio in indonesian, Rio tells him, Daud walks up to me one basketball match and says 'My nipple hurts' indicating the sole of his foot.

Monday, August 07, 2006

The best email ever

Hi all I received this email from Randy Andy today, and it made it. It has to be the best email I ever recieved but maybe you gotta know andy:

haha, jerry was excellent, he passed his translating courses, he's busy
applying permanent residence visa, jerry and i are gonna sit the fucking
ielts test this saturday. so, we have to prepare this bullshit test.anyway,
we are gonna make a time to catch you bitch up. how's ur job?


Word to your Mother

Quakers vs The Lakers

Okay it has nothing to do with the Lakers. On Sunday I went to the local Quakers Meeting. It's been a long, long, looooooooong time coming.
We arrived late. But that was okay because Bill was there to greet us at the door with a group of late comers who would all go in together so as not to disrupt the meeting.
The Quakers are not talked about anywhere near enough. I assume it is because they are a Western Religion and so lack the Mystic appeal of Hinduism and Buddhism. They sprunged out of Christianity but the way they practice is what interests me. I still have complete faith that there is no god.
There's no quaker trinkets to sell. No beaded necklaces, no quaker bling. No crazy old quaker appearing alongside John Safran on a comedy show to draw people to the service. The Christian Society of Friends is small because like most inherently good practices the belief that they will stand without marketing and sales efforts is wrong.
That being said I don't want to draw the line in the sand to say get on board quakers. Two things are worth pointing out: Ghandi at a stage of self discovery decided to check out christianity, the welcomers at the church service he was at turned him away because he was obviously not Christian in appearance. Christianity possibly lost one of the greatest humanitarians to have walked the earth since Jesus and they didn't lose him by accident.
The other was when Damo raised his concern that his interest was 'disengenuous' (what a fag) the girl said 'I've been coming for three years nobodies ever asked me what I believe'.
There is no creed to the Quaker way infact there is no real Quaker way. The Quakers have been able to do something that almost no other religion has managed. Reflect on itself and evolve.
What did the meeting involve. Sitting in dead silence for about an hour. Not meditation, not anything. But communal silence. I didn't find it weird, I was glad to get a social context where there was no compulsion to fill the void with noise.
Then afterwards we all held hands and that was it.
I could feel the physiological benifits of it and I can honestly say it was a lot more relevant and interesting than a lot of church services I've reluctantly agreed to sit through.
Most importantly it comes back to my fundamental beef with most religions: all texts require interpretation, all lessons need to be interpreted and spirituality is highly personal, yet most religions expect you to seed this role to an authority.
Most of them really empty the practice of the religion of any spirituality at all and engage you in more self validating politics.
Buddhism is good, but the practice of zen is the better part of it to me. There's still rules and laws layed down in buddhism about drinking wine and touching women and having same sex relationships. The Quaker meeting style emerged from a Christian off shoot but the way they conduct there meetings and how anyone of any standing can contribute is what impresses me. There is a culture that is a reflecition to me of John Lennon's imagine: 'no heaven, no hell, no countries yadda yadda yadda' but that is entirely possible. The devil could turn up to a Quaker meeting and decide he'd wasted his life.
The Quakers I can see being something else entirely in a hundred years time rather than obsolete. Whilst they are sparse in Australia and a small community I don't see them at risk of the same irrelevance faced by larger pushier institutions.
Ultimately to me it is about self determination. And that is cool, I could turn up to Quaker meeting week after week and if asked what I believe could say 'I believe women are beautiful*'

* speaking of beautiful I grabbed the pamphlet that described the quaker's stance on homosexuality and lesbianism and it filled my heart with hug puppies such was it's beauty.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

The Third Potential

I'd like to cryptically share with you one of El Sup's master piece extracts of writing directed at children:

There were once three children, one was good, one was bad, and the other was the Sup. Arriving from different directions they came to a house and went in. Inside the house there was only a table. On that table was a plastic jar, one of those they use for ice cream or snow cones. Inside each white plastic jar (note: no trademark or logo) there were two chocolate bunnies and a piece of paper. The paper said:
"Instruction for the use of the two chocolate bunnies"

"After 24 hours, this pair of chocolate bunnies will reproduce themselves and will have a new pair of bunnies. Every 24 hours, the pairs of chocolate bunnies inside this white plastic jar will multiply into another pair. That way the owner will always have in this magic plastic jar (Those used for ice cream or snow cones) chocolate bunnies to eat. The only condition is that at all times there must be a pair of chocolate bunnies inside this plastic jar, the same one used for ice cream or snow cones."

Each child took his white plastic jar , those used for ice cream or snow cones.

The bad child could not wait for 24 hours and ate his two chocolate bunnies. He enjoyed the moment, but he had no more chocolate bunnies. Now he has nothing to eat, but the memory and nostalgia for the chocolate bunnies remain.

The good child waited for 24 hours and was rewarded with 4 chocolate bunnies. After another 24 hours he had 8 chocolate bunnies. As the months passed, the good child opened a chain of stores of chocolate bunnies. After a year he had branches in all the country, he associated with foreign capital and began to export. He was eventually named "The Man of the Year" and became immensely rich and powerful. He sold the chocolate bunny industry to foreign investors, and became an executive of the company. He never tasted the chocolate bunnies, in order not to diminish his profits. He no longer owns the magic white plastic jar. He doesn't know the taste of chocolate bunnies.

The Sup child, instead of chocolate bunnies, placed ice cream with nuts in the white plastic jar, like those used to hold ice cream or snow cones. He changed the whole basis of the story, packed half a liter of nut ice cream between his chest and back, and ruined the moral of the story of the chocolate bunnies, deducing that all final options are a trap.

Neo-moral: The ice cream with nuts has dangerous implications against neoliberalism.

Questions for reading appreciation:

Which of these children will become president of the republic?
Which of these children will belong to an opposition party?
Which of these children should be killed for violating the law for dialogue, reconciliation and a peace with dignity in Chiapas?
If you are a woman, would you like to give birth to one of these children?
Send your answers to "Huapac Leaf #69" with copies to the Interior Ministry and the Cocopa.

Tan-tan and The End.

Over the years people have bandied about opinions of the third way, the third potential often refers to inaction when trapped between two choices. Fact, and by fact I mean it is not a fact at all, is that having to choose between two paths often will create 'post purchase negative or positive disconfirmation anxiety' in marketing speak or prompt us to get creative and go for something else.
I apply this at restaurants, where I find myself stuck with 'do I go with my favorite? or choose something new' anxious pangs and get around this by getting somebody else to order for me. Good old Sonam always picks my favorite dish anyway Pan Fried Chicken with Lemongrass and I get the thrill of 'taking a risk' by giving responsibilty to Sonam.
Which is a convenient way out, but most often the third potential may be choosing something you didn't even consider an option before. Try it out next time you have food picking dilemmas.
I'm real hungry now.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

The Joy of Laughter

I love catching up with Parky. One time we were at Chocolate Buddha or one of those chocolate shops, he was drinking the hot chocolate where you drop chocolate buttons into milk stir it up over a candle then drink and I said 'don't laugh' while he was drinking and he sprayed some girl with chocolate milk out of his nose. It was real messy and it took me like 2 days to get over it.
Last night Harvard was cooking and Chen and I were talking about which specialisation of medicine she would go into. I recommended proctology as 90% of the work is removing 'suspiscious' objects from peoples rectums and listening to their excuses.
'How did you get a vegimite jar stuck up your arse?'
'I fell on it in the shower'
'And what was the vegemite doing in the shower?'
Chen started asking questions about Jam jars and why people would stick them up their arse, I don't have the answer the above anecdote was actually one of vaggy's. I could only explain that vegemite jars come in a smaller size as you don't use as much as Jam, Jam jars are not for amatuers I concluded.
While to you and me this was a completely rational stream of consciousness the malaysians found this 'hilarious' Chen almost choking and none of us moving to help her out because she was the "doctor" in the room. Our explanation didn't help the choking fit though.
She eventually had to move to the couch because her back hurt.
It's been a while since I've made people laugh to that extent, it's a really good feeling even if nothing came out of Parky's nose this time.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Reduce Re-use Recycle

Okay Rag Curls attempt one didn't work out. The ringlets where there sure except for the haphazard way I set up the curls:
These were then destroyed by my constant need to run my hands through my hair. I'll try wrapping my hair around the rags rather than vice versa next time. But on the upside I have a new midriff top to wear on weekends:
what the fuck was I thinking

Procrastination hath a new name

Wednesday, hump day and tonight I am humpless. Stuck in my room alone, trying to take the opportunity to work on a script, the same script and work I did do putting out another four pages. But in my finest distraction seeking effort to date I decided to look up how to rag curl.
Now 'sections' of my hair are wrapped in strips of a former t-shirt. I wasn't coordinated enough to do it properly and have ended up with possibly the reverse. I don't know we'll see how it turns out in the morning. But I seriously spent an hour cutting strips and another hour wrapping strands of my hair.
Then I sat down and did some more writing and even got some key scenes into it. But writing has become full blown pain now and Bryce is talking about more episodes. I think I'm beginning to understand those crappy artists what they refer to when they're talking about 'work' oh for another project. Will post a picture of the rag curls when I do them right on a non weeknight.
Stay beautiful.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Marketing is Evil

I got home late and it was too late to play music in my room so I thought I might sit down and blog because it might be a while before I can again once I start capoeira anticipating I dislocate my fucken shoulders and I gotta get onto the whole find a housemate biusiness.
But when I sat down I forgot what I was going to write about so I decided just to go to bed then when I went to get my book I realised what I wanted to write about.
And here I fucken am except my fatty head from eating dinner with my sis is so clouded I'm not sure I can do it justice.
I have argued before that Marketing isn't evil, malicious, insidious of itself but is a symptom of incorrect economic assumptions that cause it to most frequently utilised by the wrong organisations for shallow and unproductive ends.
I maintain marketing is a symptom of the priorities society has given itself however I must concede that the Marketing industry as it stands today is a waste of everybodies time and resources.
In 2nd year I watched a documentary called 'Cool hunters' that featured a section on Bionicles or one of those shitty toys. They got schools to identify all the coolest kids in some chicago primary schools and brought them in to a central location where the kids where given shirts and hats and told they were 'secret agents' they were given the product before the release date and chalk and proceeded to graffiti sidewalks with the brand name for the company.
When the stores opened to sell them families were lined up round the block to buy them. And you know as well as I do that the products were never cool, didn't make the loser kids cool and are not cool now.
To quote Afluenza marketing blurs the distinction between wants and needs, as soon as you have something you wanted you want something else. All these wants are directed at consumer goods.
Like a ninja the 5 weaknesses can be employed to push anyone towards one product or another. The sad fact is most of society isn't conscious. Most people when told what to do will do it.
Friday was casual day at work, one of my many managers was asking me why I dressed the way I did and wanted me to walk through another department to get a reaction, assuming that I dress the way I do to get a reaction. Which is true, I want to get a reaction from my friends which is generally acceptance. I don't give a shit about what work thinks of what I wear on casual day or any other.
But I told him I can walk down the streets in Brunswick and not get a reaction at all, I would go to a party and nobody would comment.
For those that saw me on Friday they'd probably be hard pressed to describe anything about my attire that was unusual.
I guess I've been to leniant on the industry I studied, because I understand it and am relatively immune. If I buy a porsche I know that marketers I know know that I bought it because I have a small penis, low sense of esteem and want a trophy bride to impress people I hate for hating me.
That's what underpins the 'innocence of marketing' per se, I am more willing to do some damage because I know I wouldn't fall for it. A bank manager is unlikely to use a credit card because he knows it isn't worth it.
But life's hard, I forget that. Nobody wants to be nobody. To not have an impact which does some good, to be a bad lover, to have kids that grow up to sell insulation. People want to be stars, to be exceptional, to have a beautiful house, to be artists, sportspeople all that shit. But you graduate from university and get a job instead.
You've got a job and because you want to be great you work hard at it and you work overtime. Then your other dreams slip wayside because you can work on whats there. But whats the point of earning all this money if you don't spend it on shit?
And that question deserves to be answered. Marketing blocks it though.
The underpinning economic assumption that fucks all of society is that growth is the answer, that increasing incomes and consumption = a better quality of life.
Marketing is what essentially allows this assumption to be sustained.
The saving grace of this assumption is that most marketers are just plain bad at what they do, occasionally getting lucky by intuitively hitting on something that looks good.
But enough do well enough to feed the cycle. Enough know exactly who you are, who you want to be and what you are most afraid of. They can twist and turn it any which way no matter what party you are associated with and what lifestyle you lead.
They can convince women they have the right to withdraw sexually if your man doesn't shave.
That a non diamond engagement ring is an insult or sub standard.
That your daughter is safer if she has a mobile phone.
That your mortgage will destroy you if you vote for this other guy.
4WD vehicles are the case in point, cigarettes are another. Repeated studies have shown time and time again that 4WD's are more dangerous for people both inside and outside the vehicle. They are resource intensive, fuel inefficient pieces of shit. But they've been a boom category for cars manufacturers. Smoking nobody has to harp on about, there is no incentive, benifits or gain from smoking. It's an expensive way to undo every other anxious measure you take to protect yourself whether that's drinking bottled water, going to the gym or scrubbing your toilet.
Most people do this but you gotta wonder why smokers bother?
Neither of these products or many others exist for any rational purpose. Marketing allows them to survive when otherwise they wouldn't.
That being said, marketing cannot be stopped. It's just communication, intuitively I suspect is how most of the most insidious tactics came about, association and anxiety tactics are the worst. Some products do inspire us when they are aligned with aspirations that are not self centred.
My ring with a dog on it has reminded me often not to be an arsehole to people. I slip up left right and center but it is nonetheless an affirmation it tells me how I want to love people.
But I designed it, I didn't see it on anyone. It wasn't bling. This is contrary to Carole's kid who needs shit bought for him so he doesn't feel humiliated or ostrichsized, I am ostrichsized because I wear where only supposedly married couples are supposed to, like married fucking couples own MY left ring finger. I got it for my ring finger out of ignorance I keep it there out of obstinance although it probably reduces the chicks who talk to me at a party.
But you can't bridge the gap between who you are and who you want to be by buying shit. I can buy VInce Carter's shoes but I'll never be able to dunk like him if I don't put the time and the work in.
I may never be able to anyway. being a 5'9" white dude and all. You can't buy your kid anything to make you a great parent. You can't where a shirt that will land you the CEO position. Who you are is a culmination of the people you meet and inspire you, the learning and reflecting you do, the work you put into achieving your goals.
If someone shoved a glass bottle into my face tomorrow, would I give up on any of my dreams in light of my disfigurement? that noone would love me? That I couldn't succeed in my career? That I couldn't run to the horizon? I don't know maybe.
The fact is marketing feeds everyone's demise, it sets the bar higher on the material things we feel define us, then we make sacrifices to pursue it, which gives us less time to ponder and build defences to the trap. Then the material things need to justify the way we've lived our lives. We try harder and harder to profit and it get's further and further away. Which would be fine if we could dig shit out of the ground forever. You could call it progress, but as 4WD owners are finding out things like oil can get scarce, desires in significant countries across the sea can push prices up. And so you start marketing the least safe vehicle on the road for it's safety because the petrol aint a selling point.
It all boils down to trying harder as a strategy to win. Buy more, own more and you'll be happpy. You can buy and buy and get no closer so it just must be that you haven't bought enough.
Buddha would have you sit down and appreciate what you got.
Imagine if you got paid more as you worked less, you bought less as you were paid more and actually had time and money to invest into your world, your friends, your passions. It should work that way and would. But instead the opposite happens. SUrplus isn't created only debt, more sacrifice is required as your desire for a lifestyle you never could afford increases.
The moral: Marketing is evil because it confuses wants and needs and distracts more people from living than anything else out there. Think it's not illegal yet.

Seriously fucking think. Sit down and fucking think. I am talking to you. Just do it fucking think. If you are still reading this understand I am serious, think about your life. Think now.

Probably the most ironic marketing at the moment is Jobs.com they got the add where a fat couple are embracing for a kiss, and they do a 'turn this into this' and it changes into a hot couple kissing in the rain. But nothings changed because they were in love before and are in love now, why they fuck do they need to look better?
Why has switching jobs become such big business anyway?