Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Melbourne's Act of Shame

I am so angry and disgusted at this abuse of police power that I can hardly think straight. I have not consented to my tax dollars supporting such abhorrent behaviour. How many police officers does it take to victimise one defenceless girl? Despicable and shameful. The following was posted along with video by RynChristoph yesterday.
This morning at 8:45am a peaceful Occupy Melbourne Protester was violently stripped of her protest costume and discarded on the ground in her bra and panties. The individual in question was part of the Occupy Melbourne protest and was dressed in a protest costume made from a converted tent. The significance of the costume was to highlight restrictions placed on protesters staging a 24/7 protest in Flagstaff Gardens.
The protester was surrounded by at least 4 Melbourne City Council officers and 8 Victorian police officers.
Her movement was restricted by the formation of officers surrounding her and she was subsequently restrained as officers proceeded with aggressively removing her costume. At each stage she declared that she did not consent or feel comfortable with the actions of the council and police officers, stating that this was a sexual assault."This is not consensual'
Her requests and declarations were ignored as officers continued to rip and jostle her costume and person. A knife was requested and used by MCC Officers as the Protest Costume was cut from her body. The remaining severed costume was violently torn from her body while the protester herself was discarded, semi-naked and crying on the ground as Vic police and MCC officers walked away with the costume.NO EFFORT was made to assess her health or wellbeing after the incident.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Civil Disobedience

All this activism around Occupy the World along with the resulting attacks upon democratic freedoms has led me to examine my own corner of the universe with fresh eyes. A brisk walk down the main street proved most informative. Every few paces there was some admonition for me to adhere to....No Parking, No Standing, No Entry, No Loitering, No Walking, No Through Road, No Smoking, No Eating, No Drinking, No Skateboarding, No Cycling, No Picking the Flowers, No Littering and absolutely No Exit! But my favourite is this one (see photo). Yes, its an ordinary footpath with painstakingly clear instructions to keep left. As you see there's not a soul in sight, even though its Saturday afternoon, the sun is shining and all's right with the world. But it wouldn't matter what day or time it was, I'm usually the only sentient being plodding this pavement, apart from the odd dog or skulking adolescent. So do I keep left like a good little brainwashed citizen doing as I am told by those who think they know better? No, I do not. I make a point of doing everything but keep left. I wander aimlessly, gambol with gay abandon, pirouette on the spot, skip backwards, drift off the beaten track, even hobble with one foot in the gutter, but I adamantly refuse to keep left! Alas, for such is the limited extent of my civil disobedience, but its definitely a beginning.....

Sunday, November 6, 2011


Media technology is a wondrous thing. It has enabled, if not totally created, the society in which we have consented to live. We have allowed ourselves to be cajoled, tempted, brainwashed, lulled into complacency and addicted to mediocrity. We are enticed to fill our lives with brain numbing banality, while the planet, blindfolded and brakes off, is rollicking straight to hell.
But media technology is a wondrous thing and not averse to biting the hand that feeds it.
Which is why September's moderate gathering at Wall Street to protest against social and economic inequality has become a global movement in over 2,000 cities worldwide. Thanks to media technology, I (and millions around the world) have watched horrified as ordinary people endeavouring to exercise their democratic rights, are beaten, arrested and vilified by an armed and militant police force. And just as I was thinking this couldn't possibly happen Downunder, disgust and disbelief churned my stomach at the atrocious behaviour of our own Australian police during Occupy Melbourne.
So thanks to media technology, the blissfully ignorant are blissful no longer and ignorant no more. Safely ensconced in God's own country I may be, but I know a revolution when I see one.
I am the 99%.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Who's Cool

The Who ~ my first independently purchased LP and like everything worth having, comes with a story.....
There I was, at high school, one of 4 girls in an otherwise all boy class of 24, and unfortunately at my most excruciatingly awkward period. I wasn't sporty (Yvonne), or sexually savvy (Linda), or Gone with the Wind gorgeous (Carol). No, I was the tragic who read Russian authors during unfathomable Maths lessons and haunted the library while everyone else was outside getting a tan.
Then one day the hunk of the class (you know who you are, Bob Skewes) was taking orders for a record club, the kind where you receive a decent price reduction for buying 12 albums at a time. Well, there he was in all his 16 year old manly glory, angling for takers, and I swear, I couldn't resist. No matter that this was the only time he deigned to address me all year, no matter that all he grunted was along the lines of "yeah, record like, wanna order, yeah money now, like yeah" and no matter that I had no idea who all the groups and singers were. All I knew was that he Spoke the Word and lo! I was in the land of milk and honey! I stammered something about not sure which record to buy and after some pursing of the lips and puckering of the brows, the mangod proclaimed " yeah, Who's cool" so I signed on the dotted line and handed over the dough.
And by the way Bob, wherever you are, you were so right. Who's cool!

Monday, October 31, 2011


Funny how old stuff gets rediscovered by the young, who then blithely rave about it as if they actually invented the thing.
Such is presently the case with vinyl, better known (at least to me and my peers) as records, albums, LPs, singles and even stacks of wax. All of a sudden, my collection of tattered, beer splattered, sad and dated old records (eyes left for my favourites) are in high demand from offspring and their partners and friends.

I am asked in wide eyed wonder, if I really, truly possess an original Pink Floyd or Janis Joplin or Lou Reed? And was I actually there (alive?) when the Beatles hit Adelaide, when Status Quo rocked the Thebby, when the Beachboys turned Memorial Drive into California and when Led Zeppelin made our ear drums bleed from shattering screams and electronic feedback? So I thought I'd have a rummage and take a walk down my musical memory lane....and I'll start with the first record I ever purchased with my own money....who? Another story for another time.....

Thursday, October 20, 2011


I love books, especially old books, the ones with pencilled notes in the margins, turned down page corners marked by previous readers, notes forgotten and left as bookmarks, hand written messages and dedications to people I will never meet, but with whom I share a book, a bond, a bit of one's life. I find myself entering the shadowy serenity of second hand book shops with the silence and deference usually reserved for churches and sacred places. And to me these are sacred places, repositories of thoughts, imaginings, creative manifestation, spiritual communion, scientific righteousness and all of humanity's best and worst endeavours. My heart warms at books that are tattered, coffee stained, sticky taped together, for I imagine they have been much loved. I feel truly sorry for the ones with still uncut pages, virginal and pure, but never experienced by another, never shared, their treasures yet to be uncovered.
I can't really say that all I know about life I have learned from books, but I can say with certainty that books have taught me not to judge a book (or anything else, for that matter) by its cover.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Mother Nature has a serene and totally dispassionate way of levelling all playing fields. Take last night....there I was, in the bosom of the Hills, the safest place in the safest state in the safest country in the world.
Or so it seemed. Then around 2.30am I was shaken awake by rattling windows, tinkling glassware and the sound of several trains vying to use my bedroom as a short cut. It only lasted half a dozen seconds and it only measured 3.3 on the Richter scale, but it was enough to set all the local dogs howling and enough to scare the fidgets out of me. After thanking whatever gods were batting in our favour, my thoughts turned to other earthquakes with less fortunate outcomes, like those in Japan and Christchurch.
Its so easy to get caught up in the daily grind, with its trivia, busy-ness and routines. But there's more to life than that, much more, and it took a little shaking for me to wake up and remember it.