Tag Archives: australia

Robert Hughes: What democracy is for…

Robert Hughes died recently. I liked reading his work.

This is what he said about democracy and art – from an editorial in the Guardian newspaper:

The late Robert Hughes wrote his own epitaph in his 1993 polemic Culture of Complaint, where he inveighed against the banal politicisation of art and championed instead the importance of quality.

“Some things do strike us as better than others – more articulate, more radiant with consciousness,” Hughes insisted. “We may have difficulty saying why, but the experience remains.”

Democracy’s task, in the field of art, he believed, was to make the world safe for elitism, not to outlaw it. He believed passionately – in Hughes’s case the adverb is redundant – in an elitism that was not based on class, wealth or race, but on skill, imagination, high ability and intense vision Continue reading

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Filed under art, history

Time to get serious

Time to get serious. And uplifting.

Japan - by Steve McCurry

The wonderful and striking photographs are by Steve McCurry, from his recent Finding The Sublime post. You should definitely click over there to see them all. Steve has popped up here before with his work in Afghanistan.

For an insight into London (or any?) gang culture, read gang intervention worker Emeka Egbuonu’s post – Are you willing to KILL? When asked that question by Emeka, the smallest member of the group answered:

We are in too deep. I have enemies who probably will not hesitate to kill me if they saw me slipping (caught off guard). That is why I am always prepared for whatever the occasion and if that means dropping a body in the process then so be it.

The good news is Continue reading

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When TV goes wrong…

Excessive pizza toppings transform Tibet's spiritual leader

Ever told a joke that fell completely flat? Happens to me all the time.

But at least I haven’t done it on live television.

Ever wondered what you’d say to the Dalai Lama if you met him? Well, here’s a tip. Don’t copy this guy coming up.

And have you ever mixed up a work colleague with a leading Nazi? That was a rhetorical question by the way. Obviously we’ve all done that. But probably not on Continue reading

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Filed under media

Is this the best job in the world?

Is this the best job in the world?

No – I’m not talking about looking after that island off the Queensland coast. According to the bloke who won the competition to do it, it wasn’t as much fun as he’d expected. It tired him out. Too much blogging too.

And it’s not this massage man either.  As he says himself, he doesn’t even get to belong to a trade union and he has to work all hours.  (Question: Should I have embedded the video in this post? Or is it too saucy? Or just funny? Let me know. Really.  I have to keep tabs on my Charlotte Rampling rating.)

He longs for his own little desk. And no wonder. He must have heard of this person. The person I met last week. The person who really does have the best job in the world.

He – or she – works in a British government department of diminishing importance with nobody you’ve ever heard of in charge. Best not say exactly which one. It’s somewhere round Continue reading

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Filed under life

The internet – NSFW?

Step away from the computer...

This is why the internet is NSFW.

Research from Swinburne University in Melbourne, Australia has found that the average worker will spend up to an hour a day browsing the web for personal reasons – but says employers shouldn’t be worried.

It’s not the employers I’m worried about. Continue reading

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Katy Perry and me

You’ve probably heard those rumours about Katy Perry and me.

Well, it’s true. Continue reading

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Worst drink in the world?

Ever tried this? Grass jelly drink.

As you see, it comes in cans. I tried it for the first time in a Malaysian basement canteen. Maybe I should have heeded the handwritten sign on the door which said Only Malaysians Admitted. Once inside though, they were a friendly bunch and the food was good.

But the grass jelly drink… Ugh. Unpleasant slightly disturbing liquid – little taste, just mild anxiety. The diced green  jelly lurks at the bottom of the can like freshwater crocs in a flooded Queensland town. The sensation as they slip down your throat, or more likely get stuck in your teeth, is not nauseating. No, it’s not as bad as that. It couldn’t be a bush tucker challenge on I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here. But you do wonder as you screw up your face and carry on determinedly, whether it’s worth it?

The answer by the way is – No.

Still, at least it’s not Continue reading

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Filed under life