Thursday, July 30, 2015

Current temperature in Geelong

Geelong VIC
Friday 7:00 AM
Mostly Sunny

Mostly Sunny
°C | °F
Precipitation: 0%
Humidity: 100%
Wind: 14 km/h

Monday, July 27, 2015

More on Choppergate

from w
In today's Addie is a story about why Bronnie Boadicea came flying down to Clifton Springs in a helicopter that day. It was just a fundraising for a wannabee politician.

Choppergate: Geelong councillor Ron Nelson breaks his silence on Bronwyn Bishop scandal

Geelong councillor Ron Nelson is the man at the centre of Bronwyn Bishop’s Choppergate co
Geelong councillor Ron Nelson is the man at the centre of Bronwyn Bishop’s Choppergate controversy.

Hockey drawn into expenses scandal

Hockey drawn into expenses scandal
THE man at the centre of Bronwyn Bishop’s controversial helicopter flight from Melbourne to Geelong has spoken publicly for the first time.
Former Liberal candidate and Geelong councillor Ron Nelson said he was not aware of Ms Bishop’s decision to charter a helicopter to his election fundraiser until she arrived at the event.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives caused outrage after it emerged she took a $5227 flight from Melbourne to Geelong to attend Mr Nelson’s fundraiser at Clifton Springs Golf Club in November.
Mr Nelson was running for the Liberal Party in seat of Bellarine in last year’s state election and said he did not know the helicopter had been arranged.
“I wasn’t aware of it,” he said on Monday. “That was a long time ago. I’ve moved on from that.”
Mr Nelson would not be drawn on whether he thought the chopper was an appropriate mode of transport for an MP to attend a party fundraiser.
Federal Speaker Bronwyn Bishop lands in a helicopter at Clifton Springs Golf Club. Pictur
Federal Speaker Bronwyn Bishop lands in a helicopter at Clifton Springs Golf Club. Picture: Neil Remeeus
“That’s up to Bronwyn Bishop to make that decision,” he said. “I won’t be commenting on that.”
Ms Bishop has already repaid the $5227 and a 25 per cent penalty for the Geelong charter.
The NSW MP said she took the flight because of her “concern for the country” even though the 100km trip would have taken just over one hour by car.
She initially charged taxpayers for the private return flight but later agreed to pay it back.
The Department of Finance guidelines say charter transport can be approved by the Special Minister of State “where no scheduled commercial services exist or a senator or member would be unduly delayed by the use of scheduled services”.

A Fiji home in Australia

from w
My grand-daughter and her Mum redecorated our lounge room with some new barkcloth and a very fine tongan mat so it's better than before. Here are some views.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Seasons and now it's winter

from w
The picture was taken in Ballarat - and our winter this year is very cold.  Picture from facebook.

A song I love to play and sing: Our Life Has Its Seasons
Our life has its seasons, and God has the reasons
       why spring follows winter, and new leaves grow,
       for there's a connection with our resurrection
that flowers will bud after frost and snow.

Refrain:  So there's never a time to stop believing,
              there's never a time for hope to die,
              there's never a time to stop loving,
              these three things go on.

There's a time to be planting, a time to be plucking,
       a time to be laughing, a time to weep,
       a time to be building, a time to be breaking,
a time to be waking, a time to sleep.

There's a time to be hurting, a time to be healing,
       a time to be saving, a time to spend,
       a time to be grieving, a time to be dancing,
a time for beginning, a time to end.
Shirley Erena Murray 
Words © 1992; KOTUKU � 1992 Hope Publishing Company

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Prints at the Wintergarden

from w
This morning I had a look at the Print Exhibition upstairs at the Wintergarten in McKillop Street. It's a wonderful exhibition of linocuts, etchings, colographs, monographs, and already many have been sold according to the numerous red stickers.  I've never made colographs so I'll check out the technique sometime. I used to do linocuts, woodcuts, etc. but not nowadays.

The 6th Annual Friday Printmakers Exhibition

Welcome to the 6th Annual Friday Printmakers Exhibition with 17 contributing artists including this year’s guest artist….David Jarman. This exhibition has established itself as one of the MUST SEE shows on the Gallery’s annual calendar. Including linocuts, etchings, colographs and mono prints, traditional and contemporary with familiar motifs such as florals and lighthouses this promises to be a feast for the eyes.
The strength of this show lies in the diversity of the collective from their ideas, training, aesthetic interests and print processes. Design considerations and choice of palette add to the stunning array of work being presented in this year’s show. Every year each artist produces a collectable 15cm x 15cm piece at just $70 alongside major works appealing to a broad audience.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

A catamaran from Geelong to Burnie!

from w
Another wild idea from City Hall.  Okay, nice idea to have a quick trip from Geelong to Tasmania but in a catamaran across Bass Strait?  Rough sea - seasickness and could tumble.
Local leaders weigh in on Geelong to Burnie catamaran plan
JULY 13, 2015 1:38PM

CLIVE Palmer has weighed in on Senator Jacqui Lambie and Geelong Mayor Darryn Lyons’ push for a catamaran service across Bass Strait, accusing them of watering down a Palmer United Party policy.
Mr Palmer said plans for better transportation links across Bass Strait would already be well advanced if Senator Lambie, who split from the PUP in November, had not turned her back on the people of Tasmania to become an independent.
He dismissed Senator Lambie and Cr Lyons’ push for a high-speed catamaran, which would cost about $100 million to build, as “mere lip service”.
On Friday Cr Lyons and Senator Lambie teamed up in Geelong to announce a bid for a daily, high-speed catamaran services between Geelong and Burnie. Senator Lambie said the huge catamarans could cross the strait in less than four hours, carrying up to 800 passengers and 400 cars, and that such a service would boost the ailing economies of both cities.
Cr Lyons said the Geelong council was going to form a strategic partnership with Senator Lambie to push for the funding to start the project.
But Mr Palmer said there was nothing new in the idea.
“This is a watered down idea taken from original Palmer United Party policy developed from the grassroots by our Tasmanian leader Kevin Morgan,’’ Mr Palmer said.
“The Palmer United Party had developed significant planning and budgeting for a much more substantial model than Senator Lambie is proposing, which would have been closer to delivery for the people of Tasmania if she hadn’t deserted the party.
“There is nothing new in this idea. If Senator Lambie did not break ranks with the Palmer United Party and instead remained loyal and voted with the balance of power in the Senate she would have been able to deliver this service for the people of Tasmania instead of paying it lip service.”
Meanwhile the proposed catamaran builder Incat said Tasmanians were keen for a high-speed service between Geelong and Burnie and that the boat would cost about $100 million to construct.
Judy Benson said the Hobart company had been in talks with Senator Jacqui Lambie long before she and Geelong Mayor Darryn Lyons announced the idea on Friday.
Ms Benson said the project needed funding and a ship operator before any works would start on a 135m vessel, which would take up to two years to complete.
“There’s been quite a push for this in Tasmanian news. I’d use it,” Ms Benson said.
“It was quite a platform of (Senator Lambie’s) when she was campaigning in the beginning. There have been discussions on and off over a number of years for a service to a southern Victorian port.”

Meanwhile back home, the joint bid has surprised local leaders.
G21 chief Elaine Carbines said the first she had heard of the proposal was when she opened the Geelong Advertiser on Saturday.
She said, while she’d welcome a feasibility study and business case, she wasn’t sure there was much of a demand locally.
“I’m not convinced there’s a call for such a journey, but I’m happy to be convinced otherwise. You can’t have a closed mind about new ideas,” she said.
While the grand plan has attracted some criticism that Geelong was punch drunk with priority projects, Tourism Greater Geelong and Bellarine head Roger Grant said the idea was worth exploring.
He said, regardless of whether people wanted to travel directly between Geelong and Burnie or not, it was about creating a market rather than just responding to it.
“(Senator Lambie and Cr Lyons) are very passionate people with agendas, and both agendas seem to be about growing the Geelong economy. You can be cynical but you can’t knock the basic premise upon which they’re coming from,” he said.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

The film 'Radiance'

from w

Today is the last day of NAIDOC week for this year and it was fitting that we watched - at least the second part of it - the film of 1998 'Radiance'  a remarkable film about three Aboriginal women - with music from 'Madame Butterfly' and 'My Island Home' - I didn't think Christine Anu was singing back then.  An excellent film, dramatic with wonderful performances.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Guinea pigs and 2 degrees

From Uncle Fuzzie and Darryn Jale: It was 2 degrees last night but were inside in a vegetable box listening to Radio Magic all night. Then this morning we got dumped out in our verandah pen in the freezing cold when the Boss went to play the piano at church. Two hours later she felt sorry for us and put us inside her jacket before feeding us with something new - beans, sweet potato and eggplant. Not too bad. We like the sweet potato best.  The Boss never give us ordinary potatoes though as they are poisonous for us.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Brats in the world of sport

from w
Both are brats in my opinion. However with the stakes so high in professional tennis these days it is easy for a player to get carried away, maybe blaspheme, swear, call out his thoughts to any microphone nearby. But Dawn Fraser should have more sense than to associate bad behaviour on a tennis court with that racist remark - 'Go back to where your parents came from'. That is an outrageous connection.
Monica Attard says of Nick Kyrgios and Dawn Fraser. Dawn Fraser says tennis star Nick Kyrgios and his compatriot Bernard Tomic should go back to where their parents came from if they want to act up. She is out of line, writes Monica Attard,etc etc.

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Five or six poems

from w
I am tired of hearing the phrase Oh my God or seeing OMG in texts so I wrote this poem mainly using found words in an essay from the President of the Uniting Church in Australia and some lines from a dictionary. 
The title is of course OMG.

A teenage girl talks on her mobile phone. 
“O my God”, she insists, hardly creatively, 
leaping with words she misunderstands.
The acronym/phrase OMG (Oh My God!) 
I hear it see it everywhere in texts, 
e-mails, on television, even when
surprised by joy of seeing a room renovated.
Hands on face. The Urban Dictionary, says,
OMG is used repeatedly by people shocked, 
inserted into every conversation.
The OMG girl on the train is still ranting.
My God, me, my, always about me, 
where I am at the centre of the universe.
Others use OMG about a relational understanding 
of the G in OMG, would not use this phrase lightly.
Certainly that was the case in olden days.
May it please thee, O my eternal God, almighty …
ln modern day, the acronym might be OMEGA. 
Omega (capital: Ω, lowercase: ω; Greek Ωμέγα) 
the 24th and last letter of the Greek alphabet.
Literally great O" (ō mega, meaning 'great’
as opposed to o micron, which means "little O." )
I occasionally bump into the one God 
or the one God bumps into me,
I can exclaim OMEGA. Be surprised, amazed 
by the last letter of the Greek alphabet ( Ω, ω )
"I am the alpha and the omega" 
(Koiné Greek: "ἐγὼ τὸ Α καὶ τὸ Ω"), 
an appellation of Jesus in the Book of Revelation, 
the symbol suggested by the Apocalypse, 
the First and the Last" the beginning and the end.
Now that would be a surprise to exclaim about.

Here is the second poem for Geelong writers in a series for five days.
Reading the Age with her glasses off, 
the myopia gives her clarity up close. 
She is astonished to see 
the texture of skin on her hands.
It is like filo pastry 
or the skin of a turtle.
Inside the skin though
she is only eighteen.
The past is still there, 
the recollection of lilac,
murmur of familiar voices, 
the wind in the casuarina, 
the chattering of nesting birds. 
the recollection of things past
more real than the Twinings tea-bag 
discarded on the Vietnamese saucer.

Day Three of poems - two more to go. 
A sonnet for a Diva

One day I received a postcard from Venice. I never got to Venice, or Paris, or Madrid, though I had planned to - many years ago. I only got as far as Fiji and the South Pacific. However, after all the novels, films and travel pictures, I feel I've been there.
I wrote this sonnet one day after Fay White, a songwriter and singer, told us a story about an opera singer in Venice. It was the kind of poem that just wrote itself and I didn't have to change many words at all. Other times writing is painstakingly slow.
I had in mind the kind of music in the 1981 French film 'Diva' and have read this poem with a background of an aria from La Wally.
Diva’s Sonetto
The gleaming vortex of water is my nightmare.
I lean from palazzo windows, pain in flood,
intent upon another death in Venice and dare
the Bridge of Sighs to be marbled in my blood.
The pin pricks of stars reflect, a prelude
not a finale, as the sky fates so amaze.
An aria I’ll sing, with a shift in mood.
Sounds resonate into canals and courtyard haze
and one by one gondoliers gather in their way
until there’s a listening, then a sudden applause.
I change my intention, then early next day
a bouquet and basket are placed near my doors.
A note, ‘Grazie Diva, here’s roses and wine
for our beloved, the bearer of fire divine.’

Day Four of poems. Here's another nostalgia kind of poem.
Colour my World
I connected with colour at Victoria market,
pressed oil pastels fiercely into the cartridge, 
made clusters of German sausage,
cubist cheeses, curling Matisse leaves. 
I was a Fauve, a wild thing.
Framed some, others became lost,
gave many drawings away. 
Relatives remarked behind manicured hands, 
‘Why doesn’t she paint gum trees, pretty mountains?’ 
Others accepted the gifts with good manners
but one golden scene based on the Trentham tip
was coldly hung on a toilet door.
A disconnect with the pastel light of Paris
as the South Pacific beckoned. 
I asked questions - who am I,
where did I come from, where am I going, 
at an exhibition in Canberra, 
entitled the Impressionists, 
though it did include Gauguin, (who was post), 
I was let down - his colours dull. 
The art books had lied.
It's Day Five of writing poems on Facebook, so here are two small poems, one on grief, one on a half-life. 
A half-life
He lived in and out of the lives of other people,
a voyeur, his energetic mind focussed 
on others’ stories and frailties. 
He never dared to examine his own mind, 
yet he realized this was not the way to live,
but how can you break the pattern 
of being a do-gooder, 
a bleeding heart, 
a pillar of the community?

When the body freezes
Death had broken into her life, 
weals scarred every moment. 
She could not read, 
could not write thank you letters. 
Her body did not want to move 
as a kind of paralysis set in, 
breathing minimal. 
The weight of sky was not
the usual softness of light rain.
Sharp noises cut into the room 
as others in the household went about tasks, 
ignoring her need for silence.
The sudden scrape of a chair
or spurt of a stove were hammers.
I had written a poem about a priest in a Mallee town (not Peceli) who just seemed mismatched with the community.

The stump-jump plough lies rusting
near hard Mallee roots,
knotted and dark-red as dried blood,
a mound where the dust settles
after a storm rolls in.

In the town the priest puts away golf-clubs,
genuflects before he sits down
at the mahogany desk to write,
“Now who can tell me the way to Babylon?’

These are hard dry people
used to dry hard times,
immoveable as mallee roots,.
Dare he jump over them 
as the plough did
in earth-breaking days?

He is city soft, cushioned as thistledown,
or occasionally a tumbling thorn-bush
swept by the North wind.
Mismatched, they pass one another.

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

The metal birds of Geelong

from w
Have you noticed the metal birds popping up in Leopold and Armstrong Creek as symbols of the new developments They are the creation of Kolka Kooper a sculptor from Tasmania who is in residence in Geelong to make these public art birds. He's an expert in rural design, garden sculpture and has very pleasing designs. Go to to see photos of his designs.

Anyway someone likes them so much that there's some birdnapping going on, even though the metal birds are bolted on.  Actually I like the real pelican, flying free. The pelican has been used as a symbol in early Christian art to represent the one who sacrifices herself to feed her chicks. She plucks at her breast and the bleeding feeds them. Rather unpleasant but it's about sacrifice.