Sunday, December 20, 2009

An open letter to the devil himself.

Dear Vagina full of sand,

I would hastily cast my reservations and religious beliefs aside for the opportunity to falcon punch you in the face with both of my fists and one of my legs. You don't just rub me the wrong way, you are a novelty sized cheese grater to the entire system of human relations, furiously tearing strips from it like a cat on heat does the shins of it's owners.

Perez Hilton. I mourn your existence.

The problem is, you're everywhere. You are a dyslexic troll, the spam sperm that somehow survived it's journey from a 2bit gossip email to a fully fledged wasteland of sparkles and sin. You reside in a demountable sector of the internet founded on lies, tasteless quips relating to death and crude abbreviations, yet for reasons unfathomable and at the same time, completely understandable, you are fucking everywhere and people can't live without you. Teenage girls form their opinions on trivial matters by scanning your coarse brand of celebrity critique while grown men and women preach your reverse gospel around office water-coolers on an international scale. They take this information on board as important and relevant and spread it throughout the real world like a modern day plague that feasts on it's hosts brain cells. The pink colour scheme of your stronghold is not dissimilar to that of a freshly ripped, reoccurring scab.

Unfortunately you're launchpad is the least of your concerns at this point in time. Sure, there are millions of publications, online and print, that do what you do, albeit with more tact, and the general public's fascination with celebrity is a guaranteed constant because the grass is always greener, especially when the grass on the other side is dead or struggling. However, the difference between you and the majority is that you possess a rare quality allowing the capitalization from and humiliation of the deceased whilst somehow retaining clout as a source of information. All the cute captions and witty commentaries in the world can't save you from the fact that you promote death for web traffic disguised as condolences. You're the grim reaper in a turquoise jumpsuit and an Apple laptop is your chariot.

Look how this sack of shit gets down:

These were all posted within hours of Brittany Murphy's unfortunate passing this morning. The word 'dies' in capital letters, the accusations against her husband and the unnecessary comparisons to other celebrities whose drug addictions have actually been proven are all the signs of a man with no soul. The same man who was more than happy to throw child molestation and Britney Spears' name in amongst the announcement of Michael Jackson's death and then had the audacity to turn around months later and accuse others of capitalizing from his demise.
You are not only a piece of shit, but moreso an entire industrial district full of infected colons manufacturing the most potent fecal matter known to man at least 10 times a day.

In celebration of your official loss of all ties to the human race, i've constructed my own Perez Hilton style post that i hope you see before your own demise, which i will approach in a similar fashion.


WTF!? We're not sure what's going on here, but it looks like Perez had a little run in with a big trouser snake! He was spotted leaving this grey curtain yesterday having just been blasted by a supposed 3 litres of pure semen! Whether or not his cheeky smile is a front to hide the disappointment of having to walk around as a baby batter canvas is yet to be found, but what we do know is that this isn't the best look for the aspiring actor/musician/celebrity blogger.

By the way P-rez, loving the blue hair! You look like a pregnancy test!

I hope you get punched in the face again, significantly harder and with more surface area covered than last time.


R.I.P Brittany Murphy, there is no Perez Hilton where you are now.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Delicate china vase atop rich oak bookshelf.

As the unforgiving sun was lullabied by Mikhail overture to Russlan and Ludmilla and the remaining luminaries shared their last dance along the River Swan, the reality of my location began to set in. I was on the Esplanade as the West Australian Symphony Orchestra began dipping into it's bag of classic Russian overtures, surrounded by cultured families and music students. The Monopoly Man could have driven past and nobody would've blinked an eye. For me, it was an experience completely out of the ordinary, highlighted prominently by my freshly ironed button up and a quartet of styrofoam cups that had set up camp around a bottle of 2008 pinot noir. I was now 60 years old and loving every minute of it.

Myself, Joe, Kieran and Jack set up shop towards the back of the crowd in a selfless act of smoke-free adherence and central crowd avoidance. This was beneficial to us as much as it was to the majority of free ticket holders, should we have felt the need to smoke copious amounts of cigarettes and crack immature jokes about the people walking past us, which we most certainly did. As our commentary heated up, so did the symphonies as the WASO broke into Mussorgsky’s 'Night on Bald Mountain'. It was as if the conductor sensed what we were up to as our jabs were only equaled by the ferocity of the flames displayed on the tent above the musicians and the multiple climaxes of Fantasia's magnum opus.

We were sat in the middle of the farthest exit and as a result, had first class seats to everyone that decided to move around during the performance. We put up with it for the most part, but as a certain 'Stripe Shirt' made it his business to casually stroll through the catwalk we'd reached the end, and the beginning, of our wits. 'Stripe Shirt' was for the most part, a normal guy in a striped shirt. However, due to the effects of Alcohol and the strong nature of the stripes on this particular shirt, he may as well have jumped around the isles, waving glow sticks around whilst proclaiming his love for pissing people off. Being the respectful and worldly symphony connoisseurs that we are, we collectively came to the conclusion that 'Stripe Shirt' was trying to ruin Christmas for all of us. We could have jumped him, but we were watching Russian overtures on the esplanade and it wouldn't have gone down to well with the pregnant teachers and bearded scientists. The beauty of this situation was that he remained completely unaware of our accusations, but still caught our childish laughter at the end of it and learned a valuable lesson about correct symphony attire.

The interludes of Symphony in the City were handled by conductor Guy Noble, who could have made an equally successful career out of stand-up comedy. His jokes about Russian politics and drunk Russians appealed to the more mature patrons, whilst constant quips relating to Twitter and the iPhone kept the younger critics at bay. Even during the more sombre moments of the performance, this jack of all trades managed to remind the crowd of how unappealing Perth is, with sarcastic remarks about blowing the bell tower up and opening hours. The entire crowd embraced in a roar of laughter and cheers as it was once again re-affirmed that everyone in Perth hates Perth.

During Shostakovich's Dmitri Tahiti Trot (Tea for Two), i thought i'd sneak off for a quick toilet break and the purchasing of chips. As i entered the makeshift men's room i was overwhelmed by the nature of the conversations taking place within it's walls of moulded plastic. Where i expected either pure silence or educated opinions on Rachmaninoff's, Sergei Vocalise, Opus 34, No. 14, i was instead treated to complaints of 12 hour shifts, lazy apprentices and faulty cement mixers. I realized that not everyone at the show was willingly in attendance and these guys would have been quite content comparing drill bit sizes in the porta potty for the duration of the event.

Katja Webb's powerful depiction of Tatiana's letter served as the background music to another significant part of the evening, the no holds barred rape of my wallet by the food vendor.

"One regular chips and a coke please" i politely requested.

"That'll be one thousand dollars thankyou" the vendor announced.

I've heard of inflation before but $1,000 for some chips and a coke? That's an evening spoiler for sure. I mean, i know the kind of people that go to symphonies in the city are of the deep-pocket persuasion, but this was a free concert and this stall may as well have displayed deep fried extortion on the menu. I agreed to give her $12 on the terms that i don't complain loudly and make a scene and/or blog post about it. She freaked out and accepted my negotiation and i still felt completely ripped off. Regardless though, Katja tore the roof of it and bellowed out my personal favourite performance of the night. You could say she actually blew the ozone layer off it because of the outdoors location, but i'll save that for my next symphony review.

As the sea of Nintendo DS's lit up and the crowd became antsy, Guy Noble announced the moment we'd all been waiting for. Tchaikovsky's 1812 overture is arguably one of the most recognisable pieces of music in the history of music, but those of you that don't go and see live orchestra very often may recognise it from the conclusion of 'V for Vendetta' and various other montages of destruction. Due to time restraints and Perth's famous 9 o'clock curfew, the piece was limited to it's finale, but was not without it's charm. Whilst a full blown riot and the systematic levelling of Perth's skyline would have been an ideal end to the evening and a fitting tribute to the melody in question, it was just as nice to sit there in awe as the cannons were set off at just the right time and the bell tower proved it's worth by ringing in the background. $1.2 million dollars well spent.

As the performance came to a close we scoped a rather extravagant Christmas party closer to the river and decided to check it out. Where there are Christmas parties, there is free alcohol and Cocaine right? We were denied entry on the grounds that it was a work Christmas party and we all immediately regretted not working for the company in question. We found a break in the fence around the corner and all previous regret was washed away when we were informed that you had to pay for the alcohol at this particular Christmas throwdown. Great idea, host an outlandish gathering on the foreshore with flowers and fancy lighting and then charge your employees for drinks with their Christmas bonuses. We all decided we were glad we didn't work for said company and ended the evening with the communal smoking of a special cigarette on the foreshore.

As the water gently lapped against the limestone wall and we sat there in reflection of the evening's events, a single disgruntled heroin addict walked past us and started staunching the river as if it owed him some money. We waited until he was gone, laughed hysterically and decided it was home time.

The West Australian Symphony Orchestra's 2010 performance schedule is available here. Even if you aren't an avid follower of all things Russian and classical, their organisation promotes a large variety of music and I strongly suggest you go and check them out with empty expectations and a full bottle of red.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

How to really surprise your friends and family this Christmas.

Every weekend I like to head down to my local Gametraders to see if any ingrates have traded in some vintage gold. I've been known to stumble across deadstock, European exclusive copies of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (the one that came in the black box) on a good day and even the odd dust-covered copy of Axelay for the Super Nintendo on any other day. It's a little routine i've had in check for the last year or so and i find it both soothing and resourceful, even though Galleria Morley is comparable to an all ages leper colony mental asylum for the overweight and elderly.

Something was different last weekend though. It's generally pretty quiet at the Gametraders end of the mall, but this time around everything seemed a little more overweight and elderly. Children's tantrums were assaulting my ears from angles i didn't previously think were possible, trails of discarded hair followed panicky fathers and their disobedient trolleys, stressed mothers beat the shit out of each-other in the aisles over Twilight paraphernalia and the old people just sat on the seats provided for them, letting out the occasional hiss at any youths that tried to rest their weary legs. Old people only hiss at Christmas, it must be Christmas.

Suddenly, a wave of uncertainty and festivity came over me. Aside from my Birthday, Easter, Winter, Labour Day, Sick days and Boxing Day, Christmas is my favourite time of year. Everyone pretends to be all civilised and cheerful, traditionally dangerous streets are lined with fairy lights for your safety and commercial television goes into overdrive with Christmas themed repeats of all my favourite programs. Christmas is reliable as well, it comes around at the same time every year and it never calls up to cancel the day before because it's girlfriend is being a bitch or it's too hungover. However, a slightly darker side of Christmas has begun to make it's presence felt over the last few years. As i grow older and my arsenal of responsibilities grows larger, the obligation to supply thoughtful presents to friends and family has become a very real situation. A situation that no amount of "oops!" and "they didn't have your size" can save you from.

I am of course talking about presents. I'm not sure where this exchange of materials originated, nor am i yet to learn of it's long term effects, but it's what separates us from the animals and it's recently overtaken the birth of Christ as the main reason to celebrate Christmas. The problem is, i'm not good at it. I've been good at receiving presents for as long as i can remember and people always thank me afterwards for making them feel just right after presenting me with a gift. Sometimes when someone receives a gift they do this little freak out thing and make a way bigger deal out of it then is necessary. Don't do that. It's an obvious over-compensation that leaves the giver of the gift with a sense of failure and the impression that their offering is lacking in the imagination/quality department which is only amplified by the receiver's blatant act. I've seen it go down and it's awkward. When i receive a gift, i snatch it and continue the conversation as if nothing ever happened. Me taking the gift is enough to let the giver know that i am satisfied with it and avoids any possible awkwardness or excess thank-yous.

When it comes to giving gifts, i am way out of my element. I haven't thought about it too much, but it may have stemmed from my 8th or 9th birthday. Ninja Turtles had just become uncool and Streetfighter and Basketball were the new black. One of my friends, who was obviously living in the past, had the audacity to bring me a Donatello (who wasn't even cool when the Ninja Turtles were) figurine with three point movement and bow strike action. He also came with a little slice of plastic pizza which i found to be quite ironic considering Donatello was clearly a pussy and probably only ate organic granola and vegetable burritos. Regardless of Donatello's diet though, the friend in question was sent home for his betrayal with a slice of cake but no lolly bag. We threw sticks at him the next day at school. He may or may not work in parliament now.

Since that day, i've forever been afraid of giving the wrong gift and sometimes just avoid it all together. This isn't as much an indicator of how i feel about that person as it is a sign of respect and how bad i'd feel if i gave them a Donatello instead of basketball cards. The act of un-giving is a great money saver as well. People always seem to stress before Christmas because of all the money they're going to have to blow on trinkets for people that are only going to get intoxicated the same night and forget who gave it to them. Hmm, how should i spend my Christmas bonus? A new book for old Joan down the road or a wireless router for my xbox? Exactly. If i buy myself a big present instead of lots of little things for other people, i'll never forget it. It's a special bond between me and myself and a selfless example of the Christmas spirit. It's not for everyone, but if you're tired of being broke the same time every year, surprise your friends with no presents at all. They'll have become so accustomed to your kind-natured past that they'll just stand there in complete awe, giving you just enough time to creep into the shadows and towards the eski full of free beer and moderately priced champagne.

Your presence is your gift to this world. Be sure to share it with the people you love most this festive season.