Posts Tagged ‘Australia’

Melbourne 6

Tuesday, November 27th, 2007

There’s a recent episode of The Simpsons in which Homer becomes “Pie Man” and goes around fighting injustice by throwing pies in people’s faces. Burns finds out his secret identity and blackmails him into doing his bidding by basically becoming his hit-man. There’s a shot where there’s a girl-scout like little girl at Burn’s door and he sticks his head out to say something like “Just a minute.” We then hear Homer complaining that he doesn’t want to hurt the little girl. And Burns says: “Pie that Brownie, Fruitcake!”
I love that! Can’t get it out of my head.

It’s hot in Melbourne again. That means flies.
I bought two hats. One is a felt Akubra that has, as the guy at City Hats said, “20 rabbits in it”. It’s now the biggest hat I own and its VERY comfortable. The other is a kangaroo leather bush hat by Akubra’s biggest rival Barmah. It can fold up and fit into a canvas bag that came with it. The guy at City Hats said that Kangaroo is the second most durable leather in the world. Like an idiot, I didn’t ask him what the first most durable was.
City Hats is at Flinders St. Station and is a definite stop for anyone interested in getting a good hat while in Melbourne. Small cramped shop with just stacks and stacks of hats. And the guy (I didn’t get his name) was a TRIP. He was complaining about the number of people at the track this year who weren’t wearing hats: “As if skin cancer is more fashionable.”
He was preaching to the choir with me. I love hats. I love wearing them. It saddens me that they are no longer assumed in our society. I’ve been in some old theaters that have a wire hat holder under the seat. It’s so completely civilized. You put your hat in the holder and then fold the seat down and sit. Unlike in restaurants and bars these days where you can’t find anywhere to put a hat. Not even a rack or hook. And then the staff treat you like you’re some kind of trouble-maker because you expect there to be some provision for the hat-inclined.

Watching Australia oust Howard and get their long-term dream of a new government has been interesting. I have not yet met a single Howard supporter. I know they exist, but they don’t hang around arts type people in Melbourne it seems. The point is, that it makes me think about the next US election. What alarms me most is that in a context featuring a profoundly messed up portfolio of foreign policy disasters, and an accelerating environmental disaster of global proportions, I don’t hear anyone really saying anything that isn’t political maneuvering. Maybe that’s par for the course. That you’ve got to get into the office and then you can do things. But it seems like what we could use is somebody who can craft an ability to grock all of this stuff into an ability to communicate it. I feel like we live in a world where there are so many alarms going on, that we don’t hear any of them.
I mean, have you heard what some of these climate scientists have been saying? When was the last time you heard anyone with credibility say anything along the lines of “Oh, it turns out things aren’t as bad. Our estimates were pessimistic. Global warming is accelerating more slowly than we thought.”? Quite on the contrary, you hear expert after expert saying things along the lines of “It’s worse than we thought. It’s all fundamentally falling apart RIGHT NOW. Our previous estimates were pure Pollyanna fantasy.” When people talk about good news in climate science these days its about the fact that Al Gore has made a difference and a few more people take the subject a bit more seriously. This is like saying that you’ve managed to convince the occupants of a burning building that fire actually exists.

I look at how we live our lives now and I think about a little kid coming up to me when I’m old and asking “What the hell were you people DOING? What was wrong with you?”

And then there’s the war…

Melbourne 5

Saturday, November 24th, 2007

The title of this post sounds like a singing group or a gang of super-heros or a TV detective show: “Melbourne Five”

Ok. So you may have noticed a change to the Blog. I signed up for Google’s AdSense program. This means that the box at the top of the page will be populated by links to advertisers that have been selected by Google’s algorithms (Al-Gore-isms) to be of interest to those interested in the content of the page. I’m curious about this.
I’m interested in a number of things about it:
Whether or not the kinds of things that show up in my ads will seem relevant, useful or helpful.
Whether it becomes irritating.
Whether it actually makes any money.

If you have thoughts about this, I encourage you to let me know. I’m not completely sure how I feel about it and figure getting it out there is a way to clarify my feelings. “I’m sorry your honor, I wasn’t sure how I felt about serial killing so I thought I’d try it out and see. Turns out it’s not my thing.”

Speaking of which: It seems that the “Comment” functionality on my Blog is down. I’m trying to figure it out but for the time being it doesn’t seem to be working. I’ll let you know when it’s back, so if you’ve got comments, save them up.

I’m also thinking about changing the name of the blog to something other than “Leon’s Weblog”. The current title has the advantage of descriptive accuracy, abut that’s about it. So stand by on that as well.

Saturday was election day in Australia. Australians are required to vote. They get fined about $40 if they don’t, so everyone has this thing today that’s kind of like jury duty in the states. They HAVE TO GO, but it’s a privilege. So it’s a total pain to be able to take part in this wonderful thing.

Given the political strategies in the States based on turn out alone, it’s interesting to think about what would happen if we had such a system in the U.S. Another option would be to declare elections with an insufficient turn out, invalid. Until we reach a certain percentage, let’s say 80 percent just to be ambitious, we don’t have a quorum and the election has to be done over.
I know there are arguments about mandatory voting not representing the kind of freedom that Americans hold to, but it also seems clear that two big things that can derail a democracy are voter ignorance and apathy. Not that mandatory voting would make people any less apathetic or informed, but it might help. If you have to vote, you have to at least know something. You at least have to get up off the couch.
I think it’s possible to argue that when you’ve got an overwhelming majority of the people in a country not voting, they’ve voted against the basic idea of democracy and it’s time for something else.

So Labor won. This, it seems, is a good thing. The Liberal coalition has been in power for almost 12 years. Most of my friends here compared this election to the next one in the US; a chance to get rid of an abusive government. Well it seems to have happened. It wasn’t a landslide but PM Howard seems to have lost not only his post but his Parliamentary seat as well. That’s gotta hurt.

The US election is almost a year away. Almost anything can happen in that time. I’m sure many things will. I’m haunted by something I heard Sy Hersh say a few weeks back: The Democrats are going to lose this thing if they don’t wake up. There’s time to wake up and there’s time to blow it. Only time will tell.

Melbourne 4 (Thanksgiving)

Thursday, November 22nd, 2007

Thursday was a strange day.

My Godparents, the Vorlands, are former Missionaries, colleagues of my own parents. They had a distribution of children that was, although not identical, akin to the distribution of myself and my siblings. Most notably from my perspective right now is that their youngest son Andy was my age and we were very close childhood friends, and their eldest daughter Cathy was the same age as my sister Ruth and they shared a very close bond growing up.
Cathy eventually grows up and moves to Australia. She marries and raises a family here in Melbourne. Seven or so years ago she is diagnosed with Cancer. It advances, and this last Saturday, she passed away.
Her parents were here because they knew it was getting close, so I e-mailed them and found out where/when the funeral was. Appropriately enough the funeral was on American Thanksgiving day. Conveniently enough the church where it was to be held was so close to the VAC where Barney and I are working, that I could walk there from the theatre in three minutes. So I asked Barney to “take over” and I went to the funeral on Thursday morning.

Haven’t been to a funeral in a long time, but I do spend a good deal of time contemplating death. The odd thing here was to be contemplating it in public and within the context of Christianity. Now I don’t want to go too far out on this particular limb, because I don’t want to step on feelings which are inviolate and perhaps holy. But it is very odd to me that Christianity, which along with a lot of other religions, makes a claim to understanding and being able to explain death, doesn’t seem to eliminate the deep freak-out that happens when it occurs. My late father, who had experienced a lot of it, and was quite sober about it in my experience said to me once that “The only thing you can really count on in another person, is that they are going to die.” This is (pending radical breakthroughs in medicine or metaphysics) simply true.
As I said, I don’t want to trample on anyone’s feelings, and I’m sure that I’m not above this personally either, but it does seem to me that the intensity evident in how we confront death hints at the fact that we at least suspect, that it is indeed the end. Full stop. I don’t think there is anything wrong with that. As beings, non-being is the toughest thing to confront, and anything (within reason) that a person does to seek comfort in that moment is legit in my book.

So given this kind of musing, I’m not exactly the person you want at your funeral, but I was there at Cathy’s and it was a beautiful service. Her bereaved husband’s eulogy was eloquent, heartfelt and delivered with a dignity that I found moving. Andy, who is a photographer in Tokyo, sent a beautifully executed photo montage, set to music. One of the striking things about this was that the photos at the beginning all showed the much younger, elder Vorlands caring for the infant Cathy, and the shots near the end we similar situations of the same people care giving, with everyone 57 years older.
Not to diminish any of the gestures and tributes that were given, the one that stood out for me was one of Cathy’s sons, who made a small speech before playing Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring on the piano. The speech was something he had written a number of days before, and although it was at moments, convoluted and a touch naive in it’s logic, the sentiment was the sentiment of a poetic soul confronting the finality of death. The central point, and I’m going to bastardize it horribly here, was that the pain of loss was the price we pay for consciousness, and that for him the twenty some years of support and kisses that he received from his mother was worth the price. He was reaching for joy. I don’t know this young man, but I recognized a fellow traveler. He then, as he put it, “Banged out some Bach.” It was sublime.

I had to get back to the work at the theatre. The elder Vorlands, were understandably not in a good place to meet or talk to. The middle Vorland son, Keith was there, and I talked to him for a bit. Here to was a person dealing with the situation with a grace and easy nobility that I found inspiring. From deep in my youth, I remember Keith having an upbeat disposition and an easy smile. Here’s the kind of guy you want at your funeral, I thought. I greeted Cathy’s husband, and left.
I came away with two things. First and foremost, I came away wishing that I had known Cathy better. I spent an afternoon with her when I was here in Melbourne 15 years ago. This is my strongest most substantial memory of her. In fact it is close to my only memory of her. It is a testament to the love she inspired in others that was evident at her funeral, that I ended up feeling a loss for something I never really, in practical terms, had.
Secondly and more bitterly, I was deeply affected by the evident pain that my Godparents were in. It was clear, despite his noble efforts to stay whole, my Godfather had been utterly shattered. And Keith said that his mother just kept repeating that “It’s not supposed to be like this.” I’m not someone who is going to win any medals for being a “good son.” And I’m not even sure if there are actual duties as a God-son that I’ve been missing. There probably are. But I don’t think I’ve ever loved the Vorlands quite as much as I do right now, and I’m not ashamed to say that out loud (are blogs “out loud?”)

All of this has made me reflect on a part of my life that I don’t reflect on very much.

So when I got back to the theatre it was composition presentation day, and we saw the work that the participants have been making in the afternoons since Monday. It was site-specific work. They presented pieces all over the environs of the VAC (Victorian Arts Center). They were fantastic. Some of the best sight-specific composition work I’ve EVER seen. The subject is John Cage, so I’m asking them to mess with the live dividing art from life anyway, but they really went there. It was like watching happenings from the ’60s. Both Barney and I were very happy.
I’ll probably write more about this next week, but this group we’re working with here is really great. It’s allowing Barney and I to really experiment and work on our stuff. Follow our interests.

Laura Sheedy is the driving force behind setting up this program and brining us here. Her mother Mavis used to live in NYC, so she wanted to throw us a thanksgiving dinner. So Barney and I and a small group went over to the house that Laura grew up in and had a fantastic time. It wasn’t a sit-down dinner or anything tense. It was very relaxed, with a fantastic Ham as the main event, oysters, some excellent cheese from King Island and the Aussie specialty “Sausage Roll”. It was a wonderful way to round off a dramatic and somewhat wrenching day.

There was nothing traditional about this thanksgiving. And I discovered that this is the only tradition I’m interested in. The tradition of not having a tradition. Of inventing it all over again every time. Not of not having a good time, but not recapitulating past good times. I don’t want to sit around in the memories of other years. I want to create the new ones. That’s something I can feel some loyalty to.

Get in the habit of breaking habits!

Happy Neo-Thanksgiving.

Melbourne 3

Wednesday, November 21st, 2007

Because of the lack of a practical internet connection at the hotel, I’m trying a blog editor that works off-line as well as on. I’m trying MarsEdit at brother Joel’s suggestion. So far so good.

Also, I’ve been thinking about the structure of the blog and I’m going to add some more categories (I have already done a bit of this). I’m wanting to set up a “review” category where I will write impressions and thoughts about various movies, books, products etc. So, for example, in a few days, you might see a “review” of MarsEdit. We’ll see if that works out.

Wandered around Melbourne in the rain yesterday afternoon. I’m trying to find the Hotel that Akiko and Suzuki stayed in when we were here 15 years ago. It was the kind of place that was impossible to miss, and now I can’t find it. Can’t remember what it was called. Anyway the act of simply walking around like I was dousing for water, hoping to have little tugs on my memory pull me there was interesting if unproductive. I kept having little sparks of memory and heading off in different directions but I still haven’t found it. I’m going to have to ask Akiko if she has a record of what it was called.

I like walking around cities, and Melbourne is great for it. There’s a lot of thought about public space, and a vigorous mish-mash of culture that leads to a kind of Blade Runner feeling. I love this sensibility, and of course it was accentuated by the rain. A clean, recently refurbished Blade Runner L.A. I slip effortlessly into hard-boiled detective mode as I’m walking around. Funny how attractive dystopian sensibilities become. Maybe that’s their function. The L.A. of Blade Runner is not a pretty place, but Ridley Scott shoots it in a way that finds it’s beauty. Like my old friend Tom Blair once said about Sid and Nancy “a beautiful film about an ugly subject.”
When I lived in Tokyo, I would spend hours on the streets in Shinjuku, Ikebukuro and Shibuya, just wandering around soaking up the neon. Riding my motorcycle through it would only intensify the feeling. Like riding a spinner in Blade Runner or the big bike chase at the beginning of Akira. It’s why, although I know it’s politically incorrect, I love hanging around the new, neon 42nd Street in New York. I feel charged up by that energy. I know it’s probably hastening the destruction of the biome that supports us, but human folly has always had it’s beautiful side. Like the spectrum of colors in an oil spill.

Back in Melbourne, I walked past a peepshow/porn shop and they had a big CRT with advertising imagery running in the window surrounded by the normal kind of neon. What struck me about it was that the imagery wasn’t sexual or suggestive at all. It was mostly text based. And the kinds of words that they were using were: “Cheeky” and “Naughty”. I realize that this only seems strange to me because I’m a speaker of American English, but it really seemed funny. To me those words suggest that what is going on inside is akin to a Junior High-School comedy night or something. Of course, things like this always make me think about what Australians find funny or incongruous when they’re in the States. I mean we do run around talking about putting things in our “fanny-packs” and what not, but there is probably a good deal of public English in the United States that is perfectly embarrassing.

Melbourne 2

Tuesday, November 20th, 2007

Before this trip the last time I was in Melbourne was in 1992. I guess that makes it 15 years since I’ve been here. 15 years has been a long time for this city. I was completely disoriented for much of the first while I was here. It was only when I started to realize that there were entire thickets of sky-scrapers that simply weren’t here before that I started to see the city I used to kind of know.

I had been to Melbourne, I think, three times including the 1992 stint. I first came with a SCOT (Suzuki Company Of Toga) production of The Bacchae. This was in 1989, I think. It was shortly after the departure from the company of lead actress Shiraishi Kayoko. Suzuki was still trying to figure out what to do without her (a problem he never really solved) and the production was, shall we say, troubled.

I came back in about ’91 to audition actors for the production that came to be called The Chronicle of Macbeth. This is a whole story of it’s own, but suffice it to say that in ’92 I returned to assist Suzuki in the creation of the Chronicle. This was a “troubled” production as well for reasons that are a bit complicated. However it did mean that I was in Melbourne for some two months (the fact that Akiko was also here for the second half of that time led to some consequences for our personal lives).

So 15 years ago, I lived and worked here for two months. Of course back then I was working with Suzuki. This meant that my scope of activity ranged from my apartment in South Yarra to Suzuki’s hotel downtown, to the theatre. We would go out to eat after rehearsal, but frankly I hardly remember much at all of that time here. I had thought that coming back would trigger a flood of specific memories about this town. But it hasn’t happened. I honestly don’t know if it is because Melbourne has changed or because I simply don’t have the memories to start with.

The workshop Barney and I are leading now is in the VAC (Victorian Arts Center). It’s an iconographic building right on the Yarra, in the center of town. This is where SCOT performed The Bacchae way back when. Recent development has made the area even more energetic than it was. Melbourne is one of those cities that has caught on to the fact that a river is a great context for public space (ARE YOU LISTENING MANHATTAN?) Actually I have to say that Melbourne has done some fantastic work with the whole idea of public space. Federation Square across the river from the VAC is a wonderful architectural indulgence.

However. There are some issues:
1. Flies. Yes the little flying bugs. They’re EVERYWHERE! Swarms of them follow you on the street. The don’t bite or anything but they are like excited puppies. They have a deep interest in what is going on between your sunglasses and your eyes and exploring ears and noses. The quick swipe of the hand across the face to clear them away is being called “the Aussie Salute”.
2. Drought. Australia is in the midst of a drought. It has been for quite some time. No one is really sure if it’s ever going to end. It could be that ye ‘ol global warming is turning this place into a desert. This makes the flies worse (people are saying there are always flies this time of year, but not this many). It also means that water conservation is a big deal. Talk of possible rain is engaged in with faintly desperate hope.
3. Free WiFi like a big weird concept here. The hotel charges WAY TO MUCH for internet access in the room and the afore mentioned Fed Square is the ONLY place where I’ve been able to find free WiFi (and I have an iPhone so I look everywhere). Don’t these ex-cons realize that access to free broadband WiFi is a basic human right?

One big change in my view of this place is that I’ve now read Guns Germs and Steel (by Jared Diamond). Looking at Australia now I have a much different picture than I used to. Had the indigenous peoples of this continent had a different history, or a different set of biological and geographic possibilities, the Colonial powers of Europe would have met with a much more advanced culture and Australia would be a place more akin to India or Hong Kong. But as in North America the Colonial powers replaced the indigenous people (for all practical purposes). And in the same way that the United States and Canada are European cultures in the Americas, Australia is a European culture in Asia. There is little to no co-habitation between the Colonial influence and the Aboriginal. Of course I’m making a sweeping generalization here and if you go out into the countryside there is more evidence of such co-habitation, but there simply are no cities like Melbourne or Sidney in India. Hong Kong has strong European influences but it’s clearly Chinese (to put it crudely). The value of the perspective I’ve gained from Diamond’s book is that the difference here is not due to genetic or racial advantage or disadvantage, but to geographic destiny. The indigenous peoples of Australia and North America lost their continents not because of who they were, but because of where they were. This is not to say that the people who took brutal advantage of this situation are to be painted with any sort of revisionist innocence brush, but white people are no more inherently evil than non-white people are inherently weak. I don’t think I’m making the argument as well as Diamond does. If you haven’t read the book, please do.
The situation now though is that as global warming starts sinking islands in the pacific there is a growing stream of refugees and a brief look at a map will tell you where a good deal of those people are going to end up. Even a desert continent is going to look pretty good when you’re drowning. I really wonder what’s going to happen to this place. We’ll be up in Alaska and the soon to be aptly named, Greenland. The Australians are going to have to take over Antarctica.

Did I mention that the flies are driving me crazy? In case I didn’t: The flies are driving me crazy!

Oh yeah. It’s raining!

Melbourne 1

Monday, November 19th, 2007

It has been a long time since I’ve done many things. The long-haul 747 flight over the pacific is one of them. The last time was back in late 2001 on the way back to New York from Japan after directing the Japanese version of MOBY DICK. So this last weekend I flew (with Barney) from New York to Melbourne (via: Los Angeles and Auckland).
The design of the Boeing 747-400 has not changed significantly since the last time I was on one. Despite everything, I generally prefer the big jumbos to the smaller planes one flies domestically or over the Atlantic on. Leaving aside issues of carbon footprint, which is like saying “leaving aside the hungry piranhas in the bathtub I’m about to get into”: I like the size of these planes. Room to move around. Room for air to circulate. I recently heard (I think on NPR’s Science Friday) that there is a huge difference between the air purification and “scrubbing” systems on airplanes with two aisle and planes with only one aisle. Something about ozone build-up in single aisle planes. Apparently it contributes significantly to the fatigue one feels after long flights. So the 474 is better (leaving aside the ravenous fish in the tub).
The culture that develops inside a plane like this, and my own emotional journey during the trip have always fascinated me. There is a certain rhythm to the trans-pacific flight, and although there are as many reasons to cross the pacific as there are people in the cabin, most of the reasons are not trivial in their lives, and none of these people can do anything about the fact that we’re in this fat tube for a double digit number of hours. So there’s this weird charge in the air.
I’m someone who always (until recently) watched the movie(s) on long flights. Mostly because tt occupies time, and being rather close to omnivorous in my cinematic taste (or at least tolerance) I was often interested in the film. Back in the day, I would listen to the in-flight music as if my life depended on it.
But all this has changed. The iPod and now the twin powers of the iPod and iPhone have put the control of what I watch and listen to, literally in the palm of my hand. This has totally changed my domestic flying. Loaded up with music, TV shows, and podcasts, the biggest problem is battery power. The iPod itself is fine in this regard, but the iPhone (which I use mostly for video podcasts) eats up it’s power faster than I would like on a long flight, and unlike the iPod actually has a job to do at the other end of the trip. With the prospect of re-entering the double digit number of hours world of the 747, I didn’t want to have to mess with this, so I bought a simple little devise that clips into the iPhone’s dock port and allows me to charge it with a couple of AA batteries.

So the NY to LA leg of the trip is on a double aisle (I’m not sure what model) plane other than a 747. I’m doing my iPod-iPhone shuffle. The movie on the flight is NO RESERVATIONS. (Quick dismissive review: A thoroughly formulaic vehicle for Catherine Zeta Jones, this romantic drama/comedy seems more like an essay question in a screenwriting 101 exam than an actual movie. Although there’s a fairly good performance by that young actress we all loved so well in LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE, the movie is almost breathtakingly predictable. CZJ’s character is a hard-edged no nonsense chief at a top NYC eatery. She is then forced to take custody of her Niece while simultaneously having to deal with the handsome scoundrel of an Italian trained (she cooks French) sous-chief, who has suddenly been hired to work in her kitchen. I don’t think I was even mildly surprised by anything that happened in this movie. And it’s not that unpredictability is the central criteria of cinematic quality, but this film is so devoid of delight that a little unexpected something would have at least woken it up. Even the supposedly high pressure NYC kitchen seemed really laid back and slack to me. Don’t bother with this one. Nuff said.)
In accordance with the ancient laws of flying behavior, as soon as the credits begin to roll, I’m out of my seat and in the bathroom. This is because by the time I come out, there’s a sizable line. People are watching the movie, and dumb as it is, they wait till it’s over to go to the bathroom. Meaning that a good number of people suddenly need to go to the bathroom at the same time. These are the ancient tidal patterns of a flight and you need to know them if you want to avoid various discomforts.

Now it’s changing though. On the Quantas 747 that we flew over the pacific, like on most long-haul aircraft these days, the entertainment system gives you a huge range of choices, and all of them under your control. Dozens of films, TV shows, games and what have you. This actually changes the whole equation for someone like me. Not only can I choose what I want to see and when, but if I get sleepy while watching something, I can just pause it and go to sleep. When I wake up, I continue it or watch something else. And since everyone is watching it asynchronously, there’s never a post movie bathroom rush. This simple level of control makes a HUGE difference. When Barney and I boarded, we were dismayed to find that we were in the middle two seats of the bank of four in the middle of the cabin. But although we both came close, neither of us lost our minds, and I think a lot of it has to do with the entertainment system.

Now there is another problem that is trickier. Barney and I have very different builds. I have a bigger body than his. It’s not just that I’m carrying more excess poundage than him. I have a bigger skeleton than he does. Now if walked into a clothing store, no one in their right mind would suggest that he and I should have to buy the same size cloths. It’s crazy. An even if we bought the same outfit and paid the same amount for it, we would not be expected to buy the same size. So why is it that we are given the same size airplane seat, and told to just deal with it. I don’t fit in economy class air-plane seats. There are a few that are close, but none that I actually fit in. My shoulders stick out past the sides and my head is well above the part of the seat-back that is supposed to support it. On this last fight the seats had those head-rest things that you can pull up and bend around your head, but I couldn’t get it high enough to actually support my head the way it was designed to. This sucks. It’s discrimination pure and simple. Show me how it isn’t. I’m not an unusually big person. I mean I’m big, but I see bigger people than me walking around all the time. It sucks. I know there are people with bigger problems in our society, I’m just saying this is one of mine. It sucks.

One more gripe: The hotel Barney and I are in here is fantastic. We have a gorgeous room on the 15th floor with a spectacular view of the Yarra river with the botanical gardens and the bay and the Victorian Arts Center etc. We’ve been sitting out on the balcony every night, watching the sun go down and the stars and city lights come out. However: Internet access is 11$ an hour! I mean that’s just crazy! There’s a 66$ for 5 days deal but when I looked into it, Barney and I would have to each get it because it’s a per computer deal. I’ll go more into this in a future post, but the point here being that this should have been posted 24 hours ago at the latest, but I’m having to hunt down public WiFi.

In the meantime… G’day Mate! (I can’t believe I just wrote that)