Friday, February 29, 2008

An Interview With The Wetspots

Here is a very short interview I did recently with Canada's Wet Spots. They are very funny people. Saw the show a couple of nights ago. Will post the review shortly.

oh - and I've just realised that the play featured in the story opposite is the one I saw last night and which I have to write a review for by Monday. Going to be tight given that I have a double shift tomorrow and an all dayer on Sunday. Good play but.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Strange Days

Strange bundle of days... went to a wedding on a beach. Funniest thing ever. Everyone dressed in fantastical strangeness... faeries and angels and demons and pixies and pirates and magicians. It really was a parade of the bizarre on a gorgeous sandy beach. They played Massive Attack's Teardrop as the bride made her appearance. Hit play, listen and agree that it is beautiful.

Vows were swapped and I watched two people tell each other with cracked and trembling voices that they love each other, something, surely, they have already said countless times. Regardless of how unnecessary it was, it was moving. I was moved in a happy way.

Then we walked down the beach to the reception, and the next day we would hear that locals all along the beach sipping their sunset drinks on their verandahs had been agog and amazed and pleasured by this most unexpected of parades.

Stayed with two of the most charming men I have met in a long while. Such utterly charming hosts with a kind of old fashioned sense of hospitality. Their beach house is amazing and they said we are welcome any time and I wished we could have stayed and cooked a meal for them to repay them. Perhaps another time.

Days later I am in court for a bit of stupidity. My solicitor is running late and I am freaking because this is A Big And Serious Place and how the fuck am I going to represent myself? There are barristers and criminals and police and it's another freakshow but without the love and the humour and what the fuck am I doing here?

Sometime later my legal person has showed and we are inside. It's cattle in there. It's odd to me and a perfectly normal day at the office for so many others. I have dressed well but there are others not so fortunate and I feel for them and feel guilty for being as privileged as I am. But we are all there for the same reason. We all want to get off as lightly as possible and get back to our own interpretation of normality.

I watch the judge judge the ones before me. I watch every move, every twitch, every reaction. I listen to the shifts in tone. I start to squirm because he is stony hard and not to be fucked with. I'd hoped for compassion and softness. There is none of that.

One guy, he's 89 years old and went through a world war and was persecuted by the Nazis. Made it to Australia and has been clean that whole time, but now he's started driving through red traffic lights. I am amazed that this whole Nazi thing has come into it, but it's what we are all doing - trying in some way to present ourselves as victims. Playing the sympathy card. But really - Nazis?

Next girl up stands when told to then sits again, and I see she is a real victim. She's fucked on heroin. Here, right now in the courtroom while a Legal Aid chick tries to save her. Heroin girl has the noddies. She's listless and hasn't a clue what's going on. Her mother - surely the most disappointed woman in the world - comes up and shakes her gently but with a sense of urgency to try to make her pay attention. Heroin girl comes to and thinks she has been told to speak to her legal person who is talking jargon with the judge. Man, it's all so wrong. Sit down, go away, pull yourself together... then the judge booms SIT DOWN! and you don't argue with that tone.

Next guy is up and his legal guy says his bit, then Judge Boom asks if the defendant understands the charges. And the defendant lifts this thing up to his throat and it's one of those electronic voice pipe contraptions, and this Dalek buzz comes out and says Yes I do.

And I look sideways at him and think that is fucking genius. There's a broken arm over there and a broken spirit there and now this broken voice... and me in my nice clothes with nothing broken to offer at all.

And after a lifetime it's my turn and it's longer than I want it to be and more confronting than I want it to be and there are hitches and it looks pretty bad. I don't feel good but then I haven't felt good for a long time. This thing has been looming. Thing is, I know my faults and I'm willing to put the tip of the dagger to my throat and say do what you feel is fitting. That's too dramatic, I know, but that's how I feel. I'm just me, these are the facts, do what you feel is the just thing.

Judge Boom has a stare like a fucker, but I know him by now because I've watched, and I stare back. Not a stare with attitude, but just the kind of eye contact he wants. He is talking directly at me, me specifically, and I know every other eye in this packed room is also looking at me, listening to this man's opinion of me. I feel small and uncomfortable but know that this is part of my punishment. These words come out slowly and precisely and there's a theatricality about it all that is kind of wonderful and real and scary as fuck, and you never want to feel it again. Not from this point of view.

And when finally it is over I realise yet again that I am lucky. I get off more lightly than I was expecting. It's not happiness that I feel, it's relief. This thing has been hanging there and it felt like the exclamation mark at the end of a shitty year, and now I know what I am dealing with and I can get it sorted and a new phase can finally start.

Weird bundle of days.

Tomorrow I meet the editor of a mag who recently said "... and what's nicer is us working together again!" (Exclamation mark was hers). Which was a small and cool thing to say. And then two opening nights at the theatre for review and a job to go to and... you know, just some brightness in my version of normality.

Strange Days.

Also, check Peacharse out. You're Not The Only One is blogging for a good cause. It's a cool thing.

Saturday, February 23, 2008


I'm often plagued by the 4am Horrors. There's a lot that's wrong with the life I've lead. There's a lot - given the impossible opportunity - that I would change if I had the chance. More than one wannabe has said they have no regrets. Fuck, man, have some of mine; I've got thousands.

But just then, just moments ago... I've been wide awake for a while and the sky is lightening and I've been thinking it's raining but it's just the wind playing with the leaves outside the window. And there's just the silent whirlwind of thoughts in my mind and I'm free-falling through my maelstrom of regret and love and thinking about that time I met that singer and how I've got four editors now and where am I ever going to ever get the money because I'm living on borrowed time and is there happiness and what have I done and then I hear this sound. It's a flock of birds. Rare birds. I remember them from a lifetime ago. They are black cockatoos or corellas, can't recall which. They are flying overhead with their happystrange call, their laugh, their cry that's saying get up silly humans and look at this shining new day. Eeerie laughter in the dawn air.

I'm up and at the window with a smile on my face because I want to see this flock from the past, from when I was a boy in the bush-thick suburbs. But I'm too late and they are gone, their call fading fast. My smile fades. Sweet sound. Sad sound. Music.

I go back to the couch and I sit in the shrinking dark and suddenly it's like time itself is suspended. I'm somewhere between the 4am horrors and the reality of a new day which could bring anything... and it's the weirdest thing but I can see all the people. All the ones who were a part of this particular existence that is me. The ones who made me laugh and the ones who made me cry, the ones who liked me and the ones I hurt... all there, suspended in this still moment.

And that's all really. They were just there. They all played a part in the flawed thing that is me, and that is all.

There's a wedding on a beach today that I wasn't going to go to. But the theme is Magic and I get to wear a plush red cape, so I think I'll go after all.

Friday, February 22, 2008

International Dickhead Day

Apparently February 22 is International Dickhead Day.

I have a 6.30am start at The Big Pointy Building. A breakfast to build as part of my Faux Chefing duties. I am not very happy about this. About the 6.30am bit. I ask the guy at the loading dock if our bread delivery has arrived. He tells me no. I ask if he is sure, because the bakery has promised our delivery would be there at 6am because it's kind of tight with the breakfast being due at 7.30. He insists no, your delivery has not arrived.

A short time later The Dreaded One (who has been doing battle in the car park with dickheads) comes in with our delivery. She says it had been there all the time. This makes me cranky because I asked. I totally asked the guy.

Later in the morning I go back out to the loading dock and I now don't trust anyone there for having a braincell to share between them. I check out the bread deliveries and see the invoices and when the same guy comes over he tells me there is only one crate of bread to pick up.

"And the bagels," I say.

"No," he tells me. "There are no bagels."

"There are bagels," I retort.


"Umm... yes there are."


"In the crate with our invoice on it for bagels... you know what?" I add, hearing a snap. I had not intended mentioning the earlier incident, but this thing inside me snaps. "You know earlier when I asked if our bread delivery had arrived?"


"And you said no?"


"You could have told me our croissants were here. I was waiting for the croissants."

"Ah. Oh. Well yes you see when we say bread here we mean bread, and when - "

"Are you for real? Next time if I come here and ask if our bread is here and a delivery that is not bread but has come from a bakery is here, can you please bring that up in the conversation?"

Dickhead skulks off like I've done something wrong.

The day was long. It was not a good day to have a short fuse with dickheads. They were everywhere.

Funniest thing was that Head Chef had been arriving just as I was explaining things to the loading dock guy about bakery products and efficiency and dickheadery, and he saw me glaring at the guy and karate chopping the air with enthusiasm. He was quite amused that quiet ol' me was ripping into a dickhead.

Nevertheless... dickheads were everywhere. All day long. Celebrating International Dickhead Day with unrelenting dickheadery. Dickheads.

Monday, February 18, 2008

More Rainbow Memories

This comes courtesy of doofing friend Nige (and Cait). Some nice shots and a kick arse track. Nice one guys.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Rainbow Memories

Me at Rainbow Serpent being not quite as untypically enthusiastic as I like to think I am: "... and I love the clouds in the sky and the feel of the breeze on my skin... and the music, man I love the music... and dancing during the day and vodka and cold watermelon juice and this tree... how cool is this tree? It's a seriously cool tree. And doof chicks. You cannot beat doof chicks. You can just tell their farts smell like sandalwood and they poo rainbows."

Two cases in point - The Dreaded One and the lovely Kate.

Incidentally, at the risk of speaking too much about poo... I first met Kate when she emerged from the bushes at a doof, her exquisite face twisted in disgust. The first words I heard her say were, "I've just stepped in poo. I think it's human poo."

I assumed at the time it was just a ploy to keep the boys away. It didn't work. At least five guys dropped to their knees and offered cleanse her foot. One even leaned over to me and said, "I want to make babies with her."

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The Wet Spots: Questions Please

I have to interview The Wet Spots in the next couple of days. They're a musical comedy act from Canada who apparently sing songs about things you shouldn't put into your bottom, doing the labia limbo (I'm hopeless at exotic dancing so I don't think I'll attempt that one), a strange sounding activity called 'fisting' (which is probably a typo that was mean't to be 'fishing'), and apparently their show involves a fair bit of arse-spanking too.

I think they sound like a bit of a crack up. They'll be appearing at The Studio, Sydney Opera House between February 27 - February 29. My deadline to have the story done is February 19. Check out their website and their blog and if you can think of any questions you'd like me to ask them, leave them in the comments box and I'll see if I can include them in the story. If I get enough entertainingly raunchy and twisted questions I'll do the whole piece as a Q&A, with credits to the filthy minds who came up with the questions, of course.

And if I don't get any interesting questions... you're all a bunch of lazy bastards and you can go to hell.

Ooh - update. I've just been reading some of Cass King's writing. Very funny stuff and well worth checking out.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

The Chill Factor

As a writer, one of the ways I make a living is by masquerading as a chef. It’s often a stressful environment but the only way to deal with a stressful situation is to be chilled about the whole thing. Get the job done properly, sure, but do it calmly. Being a stress-head just isn’t a good look. Stress-heads get this whole arm-flapping thing going. They run around with neck veins and forehead veins bulging doing and saying ridiculous things while the rest of us stand there scratching our heads and wondering what the fuck their problem is because generally speaking, millions of people are not going to die during the course of this perfectly presented meal, no matter what kind of shit is going down behind the kitchen door.

I’m looking after a small function. I’ve got my shit together with about 40 minutes to kill before the function starts. I am chilled, because I am The Chill Master. I am Ice Man. I am The Snow Man... actually Ice Man sounds better. So. I am Ice Man.

Anyway, a call comes through that there's been a stuff up and the function is actually due to start in 10 minutes. The caller is not chilled. He is the embodiment of freak-out, complete with flappy arms and bulging veins, and where my attitude is ‘can-do’, his is ‘ohmygodohmygodwe’reallgonnadie’. He is Freaktard.

I sashay to the function room and set out my kit. Cold canapes are prepped, hot ones to follow shortly. I have minutes to spare. All the time in the world.

“Lookout! Look out!” Freaktard screams as he makes his appearance. It’s his job to set up the drinks and take the platters of food to the guests. “Out of my way! Whoa that was close! Look out!”

He’s wheeled the crate of drinks around the corner at a comical angle and disappeared in a barely-seen streak that carries loose objects in its wake. I scratch my head and wonder what the fuck his problem is.

Soon the kitchen hands arrive with my hotbox full of hot canapes. They have encountered Freaktard on the way and have picked up on his vibe. They do their impression of The Two Stooges as they frantically manouvre the hotbox into the small kitchen the wrong way around, which is the way they do everything anyway. I point out the obvious in my most Zen Master tone and they Mo & Curly Joe the hotbox around and guide it into place. There is not much room in this particular kitchen and I have to tell Curly Joe to stop and plug the hotbox in before wheeling it completely into place. He bends down and starts to unwind the cord.

“Look out! Look out!” Freaktard squeals as he throws himself into the already crowded kitchen. “Hurry up! Hurry up! Push the hotbox in there! Guests arriving shortly! Come on! Come on!”

Fucker is shoulder barging the hotbox into place.

“Freaktard,” I say in an ubercool and soothing tone, “please stop pushing. You’re squishing Curly Joe.”

“What? Oh. Well. Hurry up hurry up! I’ve got an emergency to deal with here!”

I help the very confused and now thin looking kitchen hand from behind the hotbox as Freaktard mutters something about a dustpan and broom.

Now I haven’t been involved in very many emergencies in my time, but the ones I have been involved in haven’t had anything to do with dustpans and brooms. In fact I don’t think I’ve ever heard of an emergency involving a dustpan and broom. While Freaktard flaps his arms about I think about saying, “Dude – unless you’re about to perform a life-saving procedure with a dustpan and broom, I really don’t think that – technically speaking – it’s an emergency. Certainly not an emergency of such magnitude that the squishing of a hapless kitchen hand is justified.”

But I remain silent. And amused.

And the guests are late because that’s how guests are, and while Freaktard’s heart-rate returns to normal and he deals with his sweat problem, I calmly go about my business of prepping the food, not a hair out of place. Like the food, I am fucking immaculate.

Because I am Ice Man.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Dead Funny In Australian Penthouse

My humour piece is out in the current issue of Australian Penthouse. It's five short interviews I recently did with comedians Bill Hicks, Lenny Bruce, John Belushi, Richard Pryor and Peter Sellers, all of whom are quite dead. It was fun to write and if you live in Australia please go out and buy it and if you enjoy it write to the magazine and tell them you think they should use me a lot more. Ta.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Doof Is Good

Speedy blog post. Am on the treadmill again, so here are a couple more memories to keep me going. Loved that water truck cooling down the dancefloor. Loved that dancefloor. Love party friends.

Gotta go cram in another couple of long days before having Friday off. Friday I have to sort out my life and write a short play.

Then the weekend and no shop obligations... therefore we doof.