: : crazybrave has moved to <a href="http://crazybrave.net">http://crazybrave.net/</a>: March 2005

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

I'm not making this up

Just in case anyone thought I may be fibbing about Sage throwing up the horns at Captain Feathersword, here he is yesterday sucking back a cold one at the pub.

He has ugh boots, too.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

IPod SchmiPod

I know people who have IPods, honest I do. Some of them even have IPods that still work. But can I just suggest that it's a little bit of a sign of alienation from the beautiful world around you if you need to have some earphones glued into your head all the time, and a little bit of a sign of an unwillingness to be open to the potential of new things to have to have your music with you every minute of the day? Oh, and what about humming? Or walking down the street singing at the top of your lungs and smiling at anyone who looks twice, or even once, because you're in a goddam good mood?

I mock the IPodists playlist fetish. Guys! Put a different record on when that one finishes! Take turns! Electicism is easy with all the unloved viynl available at every garage sale and op shop.

I suggest that anyone who thinks that they love music tries a twenty year old Sony turntable with a new Stanton stylus, a Harmon Kardon amp and some B&W speakers. True, this costs considerably more than an IPod, but it sounds better and promotes social interaction of the most positive kind.

So I bring you "The last ten LPs I played on my record player", with explanatory notes for the IPod generation:

1. Caetano Veloso "Personalidade" - a compilation I bought in Brazil as an exchange student which I still listen to fifteen years later. Utter fucking genius.

2. Red Hot Chili Peppers "By the Way" - you may not know this, but many new releases are also released on vinyl. Some are not recorded in a way that makes handing over the dough worth it (old skool types may recognise the terms "analog" and "valve"), but this one is. John Frusciante's guitar and backing vocals are insanely good. And do ignore that Amazon reviewer in that link who says that the Chili Peppers have become "as reliable as U2 and REM".

3. Bob Dylan "Blood on the Tracks" - this is what happened when I first listened to this record. (and Haloscan stores the comments on old posts on some musty old server somewhere and denies that they are there until you hit the comment link. Still waiting, Frankie X Holden, waiting, waiting, waiting.)

4. Fleetwood Mac "Rumours" - the only thing wrong with this record is that it doesn't have "Tusk" on it. Is there a sweeter sound than a two year old trying to sing "The Chain"? Well, yes, probably, but it's a bloody good record.

5. Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass "Greatest Hits" - if you eat too much red emporer and drink too much nice wine, you might need to get the blood pumping again with some dancing. Which is when you want to put on a record that features "Spanish Flea", "Love Potion No. 9" AND "Zorba the Greek"

6. Weather Report "Mysterious Traveller" - this was an Owy selection. As I have mentioned before, and been threatened about, he has a thing for 70's progressive jazz.

7. The Bulgarian State Choir "Songs of the Plains" - I have a shocking habit of making slightly drunk dinner guests sit down in the dark and listen to track one, side two "The Volga Boatmen". Even O's parents. The shame inducing properties of said music fascism were mitigated (at least on that occasion) by O's mum being a choirmaster and music teacher and admitting that she had never heard a more spectacular and moving rendition. Which while true, was really very kind.

8. Jean-Luc Ponty "Aurora" - another O selection, but one I have come to love. At least the cover is a step up from the usual Ponty scariness. Anyone who doubts the cool that is Ponty should know that when Mr Ponty graduated with first prize from the Conservatoire de Paris, he went immediately to America to play with Frank Zappa for a couple of years. It is a source of great relief to me that the pact O and I once made in a moment of drunken sincerity to call our next child "Jean Luc", should he be a boy, is now but an amusing memory.

do not trust this image
A completely false Jean Luc. I know, I know, I could work for
the AFR with pictures of this calibre.

9. Red Hot Chili Peppers "Blood Sugar Sex Magik" - you really should have this record on vinyl. And you should watch "Funky Monks". If you were very keen, and perhaps a teenager, you could read "Scar Tissue", Anthony Kiedis' autobiography, which is a shockingly badly edited book. Shame on you, ghost writer. What a waste of material. I mean, how can it be dull when you're a rock god and chicks knock on your hotel door in the midle of the night and beg to fuck you, and you don't want to, so they drop to their knees in the hotel corridor and suck you off? How?

10. Steve Reich "Drumming - Music for Mallet Instruments - Voices and Organ - Six pianos" - American 20th century minimalism never sounded so good, except when I saw Phillip Glass and ensemble perform Koyaanisqatsi (spell that when you're pissed) at the Opera House. I remember being cranky the next day, because all the reviews I read just talked about what first rate stoner music it was. This is completely true, but irrelevant. Speaking just for myself and my mates, we didn't get stoned 'til after the show.

There endeth Zoe Ludd's tour of music. Do follow some of those links, but be careful of the "Scar Tissue" one if you are disturbed and self harming. If you are disturbed and self-harming, go watch Secretary.

PS - Le Driver has expressed some concerns that people posting "last ten IPod songs" might perhaps be talking out their arse about their selections. You need have no concerns about that here. I'm obviously not doing this to look fashionable.

Update: FX has redeemed his earlier failure to match Flop Eared Amanda's kindness with a very gracious offer to send me music. Public shaming works a treat.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Thank you for having me on

Via Jess at ausculture, it appears that Tony Abbott is not Daniel O'Connor's father after all. Do follow that first link to see Jess' marvellous take on what's next.

It must have been an amazing experience for all concerned. Oh, and you can stop swearing now, Daniel.

An excellent round up of post adoption related resources is available here at sju-sju's.

Update: further excellent smirking to be had by all at sju-sju's and at Reasons You Will Hate Me

Cheap fun and an easy post

Every year, for Canberra Day, there is a "Balloon Fiesta". Which is a stupid name, but that's what they call it.

About 50 hot air balloons take off each morning from the lawns in front of Old Parliament House. We thought about going last year, but Sage was waking up at 4:30 in the morning most of the time so we were too shitty by the time we would have to leave to ever go. Well, whoever's turn it was to be up was shitty while the other one was blissfully asleep and going nowhere. So when we heard him at 6:30 this morning we decided we should go and catch the last day.

I'm so glad we did, it was fun to watch Sage's face as a log with parrots on it and giant entwined bees drifted into the air. It was fun for the grown-ups to watch the ones that looked like they weren't going to make it, then hear the roar of the jets and see them shoot up just above the treeline.

I wished there were a few less people there, and that the irritating woman on the tannoy would shut up. I knew I was being selfish, but I would love to hear the balloons firing up in silence. I imagine that forking out a few hundred bucks at another time of year could sort that for you, if you really had to have it.

This photo was taken by O. The ones I took were all shite, but there are some excellent ones at the official site.

I wanted to put this up after reading a post by Kathy from Zucchinis in Bikinis about tightarse family fun. Clive Hamilton would be proud of us.

Friday, March 18, 2005

note to self


Tuesday, March 15, 2005

A morning with Wiggles Corp

I took Sage to see the "Captain Feathersword Show" this morning. Far out, those people are making some money. They charge about 7 bucks per person to see a guy in a Captain Feathersword suit and a lovely and very talented young woman in a Wiggles t-shirt (because CF doesn't really sing, just prances about behind the Wiggles).

The young woman - whose voice was beautiful, despite the crud she was singing - really carried the show, particularly when CF's microphone failed and he had to leave the stage watched by a hundred or so tiring and suspicious toddlers. She sold the merchandise and (when I asked her) told me she also loads the truck and buys her own lunch. At least she's in "the entertainment industry" rather than waitressing, I suppose, but I bet she's on Equity minimum.

Of course, I went for Sage's enjoyment, not mine, and he loved his first live gig. I didn't realise quite how well we'd trained him though, until he gave the Captain the horned hand. Such pride.

Monday, March 14, 2005

Oh, please let it be true

I have been exceedingly slack in failing to slag off provide an ongoing critique of Alexander Downer for a long time. It's depressing, trying to read or listen to the things he says, and there is enough cause for upset in the news without making it a great deal worse.

Not always, of course. Every now and then the news just makes me laugh out loud. Like tonight: Downer may seek Deputy role in future

Update: Sedge has peeked out from behind his curtain, also unable to resist.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Please explain

The one thing I always liked about Pauline Hanson was that she seemed more interested in finding out what someone meant than appearing ignorant. Of course, she is ignorant about many things, but she's not alone in that. At least she didn't pretend.

I'm never going to love the Liberals, but I so wish I could understand what they said. If the government doesn't explain itself, you can't have a democracy. In a democracy, people who WANT to be engaged should be able to find a way to do that.

This was brought to mind by the lead in the online SMH today:

The Federal Government said today it would be in a better position to keep a tight regulatory reign on Telstra after it is sold off.

Hunh? Why? I can understand that telcos will still be highly regulated, but how would the regulator's position be better? How?

This reminded me of hearing that idiot Mark Vaile on the radio a few weeks ago talking about the evil States failing to invest in infrastructure. I can't find the transcript online, but he was banging on about the evil Queensland government not providing some important thingy or another for some particular port. Catherine McGrath pointed out that the port in question had been privatised. Now, I understand that governments provide some investment in the private sector because it's in the community's interest to do so. But isn't there something obviously cacky about privatising only the profit?

It's funny, because Vaile thought federal investment in regional infrastructure was a bloody great idea in 2003. Of course that surplus has since been thrown away on tax cuts for people who earn more money than us and Family Benefit Part B.

I don't get it.

Big in Transylvania

Tilley's can be a bit of an irritating place to see a band, because it costs too much and the service is distracted and surly. But it is an intimate room, and I have seen some amazing shows there. A good ten years ago, I saw Tiddas play. Kev Carmody jumped up to join the encore and sang "From little things big things grow" while everyone in the audience linked hands and wept. Last year I saw iOTA. He is just astonishingly talented, and it felt like everyone in the room was holding their breath together until the end of each song.

Last night I saw the Translyvaniacs, who were nearly that good. The only thing that held them back was the first violinist's endless prattling between songs, and that there's no room to dance like a gypsy. They were joined by a further two fiddle players, one from Transylvania and a Hungarian.

The music is just beautiful, if you like that Eastern European village vibe. (My auntie came to pick up our son yesterday and asked where we were off to. When I told her we were going to see some gypsy music she told me not to wear any jewellery. Tying your horses up outside would be similarly discouraged, I imagine.)

The performers' dancing was spectacular. They have boys dancing, and couple dancing. (Ladies please bring a plate.) The boy's dancing involves a great deal of athletic jumping about smacking your feet with your hands in mid air and stamping fiercely. Marvellous! The couples dancing has a really interesting dynamic. It involves a lot of the chick standing there with one arm on the bloke's shoulder, gazing admiringly at him while he carries on with the foot slapping and stamping and occasional hearty shout outs. Then he spins her 'round and 'round about a hundred times. Now this may be a means to see if your potential wife is a giddy type, but I think it's probably because it makes her big black skirt swirl up and billow out, and you can look at her black stockinged legs and the tight white embroidered petticoat that falls to her knees.

The female dancer last night looked like a plump village woman. She had dainty ankles and a beautiful smile and she wore a black and red flowered headscarf. When I snuck up the front to watch more closely, I could see the happiness in her eyes as she smiled at her partner after a particularly impressive move.

I mentioned the endless prattling, but not the frustration it caused. You should not be able to go to the toilet AND nip out the front and have a fag AND buy a round of drinks between songs. Of course, there was some interesting stuff in the prattling, including a description of the dynamic between the players and dancers. Before amplification was common, the revellers would swirl around the room, and when you got to the front near the band, they would play the special songs from your village. And when anyone started dancing, the musicians would turn to face them, and would play to them. It is extremely poor form to stop playing while someone is dancing. At this point in the lecture our friend Cammy had had quite enough and said "For God's sake, somebody get up!"

Even that didn't work, but eventually the beautiful, entrancing music took over again. It was no contest between that and the amateur SBS documentary voice over.

Friday, March 11, 2005

lazy "what's your Google?" post

If you happen to type in "princess+mary+yoghurt" into google, guess what comes up number 1? Yep, s'me:

... "Princess Mary is an attractive young woman and she's new, and this is her first visit as a princess, so she...trout flaked into a spoonful of yoghurt...
crazybrave.blogspot.com/ - 45k - 9 Mar 2005 - Cached - Similar pages

My other big favourites are "husbang watching wife getting fuck" and "oprah formula breastfeeding shower". Both of which mark a change from the usual top ten:


Tania, of course, being Miss Summernats. No information to hand or her views about flaked trout or yoghurt.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Silk Purses and Sow's Ears

My sister outlaw is a tremendous woman with many strings to her bow. And she has, as is her way, manifested beauty from indigity. So if your film got told to suck eggs by Tropfest, take it to Flopfest.

You need to have (a) a 7 minute film that was (b) rejected by Tropfest and (c) enough mates to make sufficient noise to win the vote by popular acclaim.

You also get some (at this stage secret) real-life Celebrity Losers (TM) to critique your film in front of a hugely stacked audience.

Suggestions for celebrity losers will be entertained with pleasure.

Cracking myself up

I was driving south into Canberra this morning after dropping my son at my sister's place, when I passed a handpainted sign that said:


It wasn't signed Circe, and I don't think there are any Sirens in Watson, but it pays to keep alert.

Back in the real world, the Ulysses motorcycle club is in town for its AGM and there's a huge number of rich old bikers on Goldwings and hogs filling the streets. Like Summernats, which of course I utterly heart, but with better language.

Update: Apparently the Rebels OMCG are hassling the poor old duffers for wearing club colours without having put their enemies in chip fryers or whatever you do to earn your colours these days.

And do those of you who have dabbled in the world of law enforcement just love how I casually dropped in that "OMCG" there?

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Something is Rotten - with particular reference to the otherwise sensible Messrs. Christopher Sheil and Mark Bahnisch

I can understand a lot of things, particularly when it comes to the human heart and crutch.

But I cannot understand this mooning over princess Mary of Denmark, or whatever she likes to call herself.

Now I agree with lovely new blogger Sam, aka Queer Penguin, (has he not the sweetest smile? - and do ignore the Cher bit, but read all the rest), that her looks have been significantly overstated (She is not in Cate's class, ey Sam?).

She's certainly not unattractive, but please, people. Pause. Deep breath. Look at the company you're keeping.

"Princess Mary is an attractive young woman and she's new, and this is her first visit as a princess, so she does remind us of the magic of the monarchy," ACM national convenor Professor David Flint said.

"He (Prince Charles) has been here before and is a middle-aged man. I suppose the young tend to ignite magic and I have no doubt that when Prince William comes ... he too will reignite the magic."
Well, we've all seen what happens when Prince Harry ignites magic.

Y'know, I jumped straight to the David Flint, there. Sorry. Others should know that Tony Frickin' Abbott is speechless at the non-aborting excitement of it all. All in that link up there.

What's more, I am very sorry, but I am still so enamoured of a certain Mr Peter Ransen's prize winning comment last year that I cannot resist re-posting it. It's a response to a comment from Lord Sedgewick at backpages. What a blog that was. Anyway, ladies and gentlemen, let's eavesdrop on the topic of media impartiality:

"David Flint today insisted he had never exhibited any actual bias."

"actual bias"? As opposed to? Non-core bias? Core bias? Bias binding? Bias anothery? ... but it sounds a good epitaph. Deluded to the end.

No doubt we'll bump into him every now and then. A tragic but elegant, more sin-binned against than sinning lonely figure straining against the cold winds of change and injustice as he makes his lonely daily pilgrimage to the Windsor for his mourning Earl Grey with a dash.

An object lesson to all would be cutters and runners.
Posted by: Sedgwick at June 7, 2004 04:13 PM

Elegantly dragging a rhinohide briefcase (shot by Rupert while on safari some twenty years ago) with an extenda-handle, forcibly maintaining the aloof air of it not being there at all. Quietly whistling "How Great Thou Art". Wearing a light purple cravat and women's underpants.
Posted by: Peter Ransen at June 7, 2004 04:33 PM

Elsewhere: Nick Crustacean shares my pain.

Judy Porter - a woman willing to sacrifice everything except the most basic luxuries necessary to preserve human dignity

I normally don't read The Australian (well, who does?) but the olds are in town and Dad bought it this morning.

Their colour piece for the interest rate rise story was about Judy Porter, a divorced mother of a 17 year old (called "Leify", which seems harsh) and a 19 year old. Her husband left so she needed to go into more debt to fix the house they'd bought to renovate, and then she went into hundreds of thousands of dollars further into debt for essentials like private school fees. The picture showed them in their lounge rooom, so blase about the stupendous view of Rose Bay they weren't even looking at it.

D'you know, she'll be so fucking skint she'll have to try shopping at Maroubra. She said that, not me.

I said "get fucked, and don't be so frickin' greedy."

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

End of Month Egg on Toast Extravaganza #4

Encouraged by anthony, and foolishness at Troppo, it's time for my first EoMEoTE experience. I know Foucault about post modernism, but I do know how to scramble an egg. And make toast. As I therefore have the essentials covered, I thought I'd show you what I made mum for her brekkie today.

Made by pouring beaten eggs into some bubbly butter in a non-stick frying pan and stirring slowly over a low heat with a big wooden paddle. I snipped in some chives from the garden at the last minute, and stopped cooking while the eggs were creamy and soft, ie quite soon. All served on a toasted English Muffin - because that's what was in the bread basket - and with some leftover baked rainbow trout flaked into a spoonful of yoghurt with a smidgen of horseradish cream and some little capers - because those things were in the fridge.

Mayonnaise would have been lusher, but you don't always need to do it the lushest way, especially not at breakfast. And there was no mayonnaise in the fridge.

This month's EoMEoTE was brought to you by Barry White, a black Australorp and the boss chook 'round here.

If you're using eggs this good you don't need to add anything else, but if you're buying eggs you might add a little cream or milk when you beat them. If you were using a cage laid egg you'd be an idiot with no taste or respect.