Monday, April 25, 2005

war on war/wilco

My new infatuation: Wilco.

Their albums and songs have slowly crept their way into my psyche and set up camp. I have liked Wilco for some time. Since their very urgent and great song "Outtasite (Outta Mind)" came out nearly ten years ago (which they also have a version of which sounds incredibly close to the Sesame Street theme). They are the kind of band that I've warmed to slowly, song by song. I always thought they were a little 'uncool' ("Hello?" "Pot?" "Is that the Kettle?" "You're black!"). Maybe because they are a little bit country, but hey, I've come to terms with my country leanings... I like Emmylou Harris. I like Gillian Welch. I like Neil Young. Even when I thought I never listened to their records much I couldn't bear to sell them. I'm glad I didn't. I can't get enough of them now.

I was checking out their website and found this great little piece of art that looks like a moving Rorschach Test:

fireworks by deborah johnson

On a tangent: a new photoblog I found that kicks serious butt:


and coming close to being my favourite photoblog:

Young Japanese Commuters in Currents of Keitai Culture

My actual favourite photoblog at the moment:

Coney Island II

Hmmm, photoblogs? The real infatuation?

Sunday, April 17, 2005

think twice/groove armada

This song just came on as I uploaded this image and I decided it was exactly the song for how I was feeling after my fun-road-trip-with-Danielle-(who-is-up-from-Sydney)-to-Woodgate-for-Wayne-and-Sharyn's-wedding-Mel-moving-into-her-new-house-wandering-the-beach-and-talking-to-strangers-walking-their-dogs-because-that's-the-kind-of-place-that-Woodgate-is-with-friendly-people-and-gigantic-red-kangaroos-that-actually-do-hop-around-the-streets weekend. This is a gorgeous song with vocals by Neneh Cherry. She conveys great emotion with her stunning voice. Aaaah.

Three things I loved about the weekend:

1. The Actual Wedding
While none of us could quite hear what the Celebrant or Wayne and Sharyn were saying due to the sound of the waves, it was beautiful to watch them interact (as it is with any couple getting married), and to see all the guests, men and women dressed to the nines, with no shoes on (except for Phil, Wayne's Dad, who said to me "30 years I've been coming to this beach and this is the first time I've worn shoes!" Phil is a gorgeous and warm and rare gentleman. I guess most Grandpa's/Dad's are though!) and the men with their trousers rolled up. Sharyn's Dad laughed at me and said to me as I stumbled onto the beach in my shoes trying to work out if others were taking theirs off, "if those idiots on Home and Away can walk on the beach in high heels I'm sure you can!" I promptly took them off.

2. Having Bubble Blowing Competitions with the Kids
There were a few little kids, as well as Wayne and Sharyn's gorgeous and lovely girls at the wedding and they were all adorable and just so fun. The game of the day was "How Much Farther Than Your Bubbles Will My Bubbles Go?". It was so unpredictably windy all day that no one ever won. That didn't matter though, we stood on the balcony of Wayne's Mum's old house and blew bubbles for half of the afternoon. It never got old.

3. Talking to Strangers (and Strangers Dog's) on the Beach
After the wedding Danielle, Jason, Fee and I headed down to the beach and wandered until sunset, collecting shells and soaking up the general loveliness of being away from it all in such a beautiful place after our friends wedding. So many lovely old couples were out walking their dogs on the beach. They all said 'hello' in such a different way than I'm used to when I'm walking in the suburbs. There was a warmth and sincerity to it. I loved saying hello to them all. Some kids were out with their Grandma and they were laughing and playing along the shoreline as Grandma dragged a net along. I was so curious that I said hello and said "do you mind if I ask what you are doing?" Grandma looked me in the eye, laughed and threw her head back lifting up the net: "these are dead fish heads in this net. When you drag them along the shoreline, worms can taste them and they come to the surface and if you are quick you can grab them and pull them up for bait!" "Cool! Do you catch many?" I asked. "NO!!" She laughed and looked at the kids laughing too. "It's the adventure of it, the thrill of the hunt!" The kids nodded. I love Grandmas. There was also an encounter with a gorgeously overzealous and fat chihuahua that bounded over towards us with one of those happy doggy smiles on its face (mouth wide open, tongue hanging out the side) and said hello to us all. As soon as I bent down to say hello (making appropriate "well, hello Mr Puppy aren't you just the cutest woogee goo goo come here for some loving" type conversation to get his attention) he was set for a cuddle and scratch and lick and "YAY A NEW FRIEND!" type behaviour (on my behalf as well as his). He then ran back to his owner (a lovely smiley lady who was letting her dog do all the talking) with that "hey, look they said 'hello' they wanna be my friend check it out" look and as soon as he got to her feet he spun and ran straight back for a second helping of love.

I really admire the resolute happiness of dogs.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

fridge magnets

I bought a fridge magnet for my friends who are getting married this Saturday. They don't want gifts... is a fridge magnet inside a very small card a gift? Here is what the fridge magnet says:

"this is my wish for you:
on difficult days,

when sadness intrudes,
to follow the clouds,
to kiss your lips,
to warm your heart,

when spirits sag,
for your eyes to see,
to brighten your being,
so that you can believe,
for when you doubt,
to know yourself,
to accept the truth,
to complete your life.
I'd wish that for everyone.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

go or go ahead/rufus wainwright

I love Rufus Wainwright. I was in a Rufus mood today without knowing it. As soon as this song came on while I was walking I was immediately soothed. He writes beautiful songs and words and he has a fantastic wavering milk and honey voice that I adore.

Walking is so much more attractive with my new toys: camera and mp3 playing walkman. My three drugs of choice going hand in hand (walking/photography/music). Now when I go walking I am happy thinking and singing along and stopping if there is a photo to be taken. So great to walk the streets being intravenously fed through my ears with sweet, sweet music.

Tonight I picked up my guitar after a long period of wondering whether I should sell it. I used to be passionate about it. The reason I picked it up was I heard 'Manchild' by Eels while I was walking and decided I wanted to be able to play and sing it. So that's what I've been working on tonight. Nearly there. Might cheat and Google some tab for it though.

The other thing I've been working on is my Ab Fab obsession. I put on Series 4 while I tidied up, dusted and vacuumed the lounge room. I love every single episode of every series of Ab Fab and I think Jennifer Saunders is a very funny and silly person; most admirable traits. She is a delight to watch and to laugh at.

Here is something I found recently that really touched me: Operation Lion Heart.

Monday, April 04, 2005


An oldie but a goodie. 'Beetlebum' will never get old or boring to me. I love songs like that. Like old friends. Maybe you don't see them for a while, but when you do, it's like it was yesterday. I adore singing along to this song. Trying to hit Damon's high notes. I still have no idea what he is singing about. I love the guitar too.

Here's a couple of things I've been looking at recently and thought were pretty cute/rad/interesting...

puppy dog

easter tree

dinner party

34,000 foot high club

we take your picture, you get a lollipop

10 x 10

Sunday, April 03, 2005

oxygen/willy mason

A switch has been activated in my mind. All I can think about is where I'll be able to take photos next. I've made a list of upcoming events and opportunities. I am very happy.

I've fallen in love with this song:

Oxygen by Willy Mason

I want to be better than oxygen,
so you can breathe when you're drowning and weak in the knees.
I want to speak louder than Ritalin,

for all the children who think that they've got a disease.
I want to be cooler than TV,
for all the kids that are wondering what they're going to be.
We can be stronger than bombs
if we're singing along and you know that you really believe.
We can be richer than industry
as long as we know that there's things that we don't really need.
We can speak louder than ignorance
cos we speak in silence every time our eyes meet.*

On and on and on it goes,
the world it just keeps spinning.
Until I'm dizzy,
time to breathe,
so close my eyes and start again.

I want to see through all the lies of society,
to the reality,
happiness is at stake.
I want to hold up my head with dignity,
proud of a life where to give means more than to take.
I want to live beyond the modern mentality,
where paper is all that you're really taught to create.
Do you remember the forgotten America,
justice, equality, freedom to every race.
Just need to get past all the lies and hypocrisy,
make-up and hair to the truth behind every face.
Then look around to all the people you see,
how many of them are happy and free?
I know it sounds like a dream
but it's the only thing that can get me to sleep at night.
I know it's hard to believe but it's easy to see
that something here isn't right.
I know the future looks dark
but it's there that the kids of today must carry the light.

On and on and on it goes,
the world it just keeps on spinning.
Until I'm dizzy,
time to breathe,
so close my eyes and start again.

If I'm afraid to catch a dream,
I weave you baskets and I float them down the river stream.
Each one I weave with words I speak,
to carry love to your relief.

*typing those words made me think of something that happened today:

I was sitting down in the Myer Centre watching people and drinking some bubble tea. A bright yellow jacket caught my eye, it was a tall man with salt and pepper hair and big blue eyes selling 'The Big Issue'. I watched him as he saw the girls in The Body Shop to change some money and had a chat with them. As he came out, he paused at the doorway, looking around as he straightened up things in his bag. As I was watching him his gaze slowly found me and we smiled at each other. I wanted to buy a copy so I kept smiling and sat up straight (meaning 'Are you selling?'). He lifted his eyebrows (meaning 'do you want to buy a copy?'), I widened my smile (meaning 'absolutely!') and reached for my wallet as he grinned and walked over. He slid a copy of 'The Big Issue' onto my table, I slid the money towards him. I love that the transaction was almost completed sans spoken words. All done with our eyes and body language.

I'd like to communicate like that all the time.

I wish I'd taken his photo.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

am i wrong/mull historical society

I love Mull Historical Society. As I understand it, it is actually one man, Colin MacIntyre. There is something just so great about the songs. Sometimes they border on 'woah, okay, not necessary to have that many things going on at once'. His sweet words and voice always save it though. The man has a talent for melody. As does Badly Drawn Boy's Damon Gough. Now that man is made out of melodies. I think he keeps them in his beanies. Where was I? I love Mull Historical Society. A lot.

I finally did something today that I've wanted to do for some time now. I visited Balmoral Cemetery at sunset with my camera. I used to drive past it all the time and say in my head 'that looks so old and beautiful, I must go have a look one day.' Today was that day.

I got there just as the sun started to go down. There was no one else around. Just the sounds of cars passing by. The cemetery is so old and in quite a state of disrepair and has, sadly, suffered some vandalism. It has a sad look of abandonment about it. I read the headstones as I walked around. The sentiments on the headstones were simple. One of my favourites was 'BEAUTIFUL WIFE, STERLING MOTHER'. How Aussie is that. I love it. I found a large rectangular headstone with small simple writing marking the site of a young boy of 8 who had died on my birthdate in 1925. I don't know why it meant something to me but it did. A lot of headstones had fallen and cracked.

There were stone crosses broken in half. Angel monuments that had lost their wings or arms. A lot of the sites had poseys of fake flowers laid on them. There were layers of leaves and twigs and dead flowers littering the graves. Subsidence had caused some of the concrete coverings to sink. I kept looking around hoping to see someone else there. No one. When I went to leave there was a lady jogging up the hill on the centre path with her labrador. I wish I was quick enough to get a shot of that. It was surreal.

I found out (thank you Google) that there is a group of people known as the 'Friends of Balmoral Cemetery' who work to preserve the cemetery and educate people of the history.

I'm not sure how up to date the website is.