The weirdest thing happened

My track 'Having a Barney' appears on the new compilation from New Weird Australia. Looking forward to hearing the other contributions.

Moody Indigo

Another great version of Mood Indigo is this one by Charles Mingus:

By all accounts Mingus was a moody bastard but the bass playing blows my mind every time I listen to this album. (II B.S. is another killer cut.) The way it weaves around, supporting the melody yet dextrously moving up and down the fretless neck of the double bass.

Once I looped those opening piano chords and they reminded me of something from a Bond soundtrack.

Visually stunning

The graphics in this film clip are quite amazing, surreal and trippy.

On first viewing I wasn't sure why I started thinking about Kraft macaroni and cheese but then I spotted the packet in the background. Maybe subliminal advertising does work?

Hemp seed

Apparently it's illegal to eat hemp seed in Australia, which is a shame as it's packed with protein and omega acids.

The terms agreed to when purchasing this packet prevent me from eating it, so I best just follow the directions on the back to make a 'body cream'.

Mood Indigo

'Mood Indigo' is my second favourite Duke Ellington track (after 'Blue Pepper'), so I hope it features prominently in Michel Gondry's new film -- which looks fantastic (in all senses of the term).

Here's my favourite version of the tune, featuring Ellington with Charles Mingus and Max Roach, from the album "Money Jungle":

Australia Day

Each passing year it seems like Australia Day merchandise gets increasingly nationalistic. "Aussie Pride" shorts? To paraphrase H. L. Mencken, it seems you won't go broke underestimating the taste of the Australian public.

I've commented on Australia Day before but these items in a Woolworths catalogue make me wonder how much tackier it's going to get.

Artist Bernie Slater has taken aim at these sort of products before and the image below is one of his works.

See Gene Pitney live

A local newspaper had this piece today about Gene Pitney playing in Narrandera. I'm not sure they know he died in 2006, there's no mention of it in the article.

I've been amusing myself with the idea the word 'live' in the headline infers the opposite of dead, rather than perform in person. Like they're bringing him back from the grave.


Faux fisheye

Got a fisheye lens effect using a glass in front of the camera


Meanwhile, over on Twitter -- which I didn't break after all -- I've referenced a classic rock tune in my page design. Any guesses? Tell me @showcaseJase

Assault and battery

Australian media have been discussing alcohol-fueled assaults recently, following on from a number of stories about 'king hit' men -- some dying as a result of one punch. It makes me think about the time I was assaulted and, unsurprisingly, there are many stories from males about this sort of event because it's so common.

Let me share my story before offering a view on why this is so.

I was heading to get a taxi after celebrating my graduation from university in Canberra, when a stranger walked up and hit me in the head. I picked myself up and got in a cab. The driver sympathised with events and dropped me home before I realised I'd lost my glasses. Sometime I also realised I'd blacked out at the scene of the assault.

I called the police and they were not interested in assisting me. Maybe I sounded drunk but it was a rude shock to realise they wouldn't provide any assistance nor take a statement. They also wouldn't check for my spectacles.

I called my sister and she kindly drove me into town in the early hours. We found my glasses, someone had thoughtfully moved them to the side of the footpath. I woke up later that day with a significant bruise on the side of my face, blackening one eye. I already had stitches in my chin from a mountain-biking accident a day earlier.

As I wrote earlier, many people have similar stories about senseless violence from strangers. I was unprepared for the psychological results. Sometimes I couldn't help but flinch from strangers.

Now I wonder if this has become a rite of passage of sorts but more recently when I heard a friend had been assaulted I wondered if a support group could help address the situation. I still feel like I can't make sense of why I was bashed but I guess the commonness of the crime means I shouldn't have too much difficulty finding people who want to share their stories.

Mother Rhyme

Here's a poem about childbirth by my partner Jo, who read it once aloud in Wagga and a friend recently asked for a copy. When Jo gave me the original text, I realised I'd have to transcribe it, so I made a scan and thought I'd add it here.

Australia in 2 minutes

Strong language but for good effect. Another funny take on Australia from Neel, see more here.