January 24thAfter going to bed wearing boxer shorts and a cool cotton sheet...I woke early freezing to death- and a loud rainstorm outside. The night was hot, cold , hot cold. It's like the weather can't decide. The day was like that too, till the late afternoon when a bit of sun broke through the clouds. I'm happy for it to be cooler, less chance of bush fire weather.
I mail the cheques off for the Queensland Flood Donations and the Animal Welfare League- apparently a lot of QLD mail is slow at the moment, I'd say some areas they can't deliver.
I find out that the old 1966 Dr Who "10th Planet" isn't actually on dvd (just fan bootlegs), but the BBC did a VHS release about 8 years ago..yes video how weird. I think a good friend is creating a copy for me- I love those early Cybermen.... such freaks. They use to scare the hell out of me when I was 5 or 6!
I decide that we will clean up the office this week, serious carpet cleaning etc. Which means I will have to clear the small pile of 'must do' jobs that live on the floor.
Speak to my accountant today around my company, need to fix a few tax bits and pieces up- just boring paperwork but needs to be done, so tax meeting tomorrow. I pushed it a bit want it out of the way. We are good with our tax we stay on top of it-usually.
January 25thWe wake up to the news that 35 people were killed and around 100 injured as a suicide bomber triggered the deadly blast in the arrival hall in Russia. The footage filmed a few seconds later was quite frightening. Domodedovo which is Moscow's most popular airport always felt unsafe to me- I commented on it to Mark the few times we have gone through it... the British Airways plane that we arrived on last time, had just touched down, several Britons were killed. It's so easy to die isn't it, just the wrong place at the wrong time, and 'bang'! Horrible.
I visit Carolyn and have my Tax meeting which works out really well, a few shuffles around company names and other bits and pieces but all fine and works out well for us. I call into the supermarket and buy some bits and pieces for our friends Australia Day BBQ. You can't be a true Aussie if you don't attend at least one BBQ on Australia Day- a time to hang out with fellow Aussies and just enjoy peoples company.
January 26thWake up feeling very patriotic ... I end up with an Australian flag tattoo on my left bicep. Spend the morning making some of those Australasian delicacy's "mini pavlovas"... pick some wild Kalorama raspberries & blackberries to add on top of them .... all sitting on our Australian napkins. Meatball salad and sausages all packed and we are off. We arrive on time and Warwick has done the whole of the backyard in Aussie flags and boxing kangaroos , very very cool. He loves his flotilla of flags all a fluttering. Buddy the dog greets us and he's all clipped and looks like a different dog. Warwick adores this dog-we keep saying "why don't you two get a room"....after all Buddy is perfect. I am good and avoid saying "Is this your fuck-buddy?". I am bad..... Tania is all laughter and it's a really nice day. Others drop in, people chatting and just chilling out. I have 2 drinks no pot mostly lemonata and have a great time. Why would anyone not go out and celebrate Australia Day.
Home as the sun starts to sink... with a container of 'extra food' from the BBQ...so no cooking tonight.
We watch a doco on Lillian Roxon- an Aussie journalist who became the Queen of Max's Kansas city- and spent a lot of time with the Warhol crowd. Some nice super 8 footage and photos. One flashed briefly I'm sure was Vali Myers- I know that facial tattoo anywhere. Really cool documentary - Lillian was before her time.
January 27thChina's biggest holiday -lunar new year is soon. In the month more then 2.85 BILLION will use the train network for the period- heading off to explore parts of China. That's a lot of people.
It's a nice day outside- the shrill of fire engines across the mountain-a small fire today at Kalorama and 3 fire engines- a small grass fire nothing major. No smoke either that we could see.
January 28thI see that Queensland is about to be hit by some cyclones- YASI is the main problem. It looks like Hamilton & Magnetic Island will be closing for tourists for awhile. You'd think Queensland would of had enough battering- if there is a God send this somewhere else (the backyard of some USA evangelists would be good).
Sad to hear that the White Stripes are splitting up-"Under the great white northern lights" was fantastic and a must have for everyones music dvd collection.
January 29thUSA evangelicals should be shot! The hatred planted by them in their 2009 visit to Uganda resulted in more gay persecution & the killing of David Kato- a gay activist- who was murdered this week. The day that Uganda President Yoweri Museveni is kicked out of office or squashed by a rogue meteorite will be a great day indeed- he will burn in hell- for many reasons.
January 30thAs Victoria has it's third day in a row of over 100 degree heat, a large part of America has an epic snow storm trying to bury it- the storm, one of the largest since 1950, some areas are in a state of emergency. You know it must be bad when schools are closed in the Windy City!
However Punxsutawney Phil the groundhog ignored the biting cold to come out and predict that Spring isn't far away!
January 31stIt's a warm old day here and I decided to spend an hour working in the garden and burning off leaves and tree drop. I check the CFA website to make sure it's not a fire ban day, I also check to make sure there is no wind etc.
All fine to do this, it's hot but not that hot. I make sure our water hose, buckets etc are out. So imagine my surprise when a FIRE ENGINE turns up...and not one but 3 fire cars. Apparently a fire lookout station in the national park reported smoke. It's not like our burn off fire is massive, it's small- talk about a major overreaction. The CFA guy is going 'what happens if there was strong wind"....I go well I wouldn't burn off in a strong wind... don't get me wrong I like the CFA, we support them we donate we buy their raffle tickets but really if it was meant to be a fire concern day- why do they put TODAY IS NOT A FIRE BAN DAY on their website. So Mark is in the office and checks the CFA comes up and goes "I think that fire engine is for us". I decide to put out the very small fire as I don't like wasting time for these guys, but if it's such an extreme it really should be a "Fire ban" day. I was only slightly embarrassed by this. My reputation as the Kalorama Fire Starter is intact!
Bob Dylan tickets on sale today- we really don't want to see him at Rod Laver...I wish there was a smaller show- so no Bob for us.
We watch our Woodstock Blu ray- it's the extended version of the movie and it's fantastic. Joe Cocker, Arlo Guthrie and Canned heat were the best. The crowd scenes just amazing... was kind of weird when Hendrix finally hit the stage a big chunk of people had left. The Who (and we LOVE The Who) came across as really average at Woodstock-something was lacking. Anyway it was a bargain, we noticed that quite a few Blu rays are very very cheap on the JB website especially compared to the JB stores. We paid $8 (and that included postage), it was $50 in the store! When you look at the crowd you see that all the Americans were actually thin once- I swear it's junk food that has made so many obese- maybe all the hippy food was good for us. All those people at Woodstock and so few overweight.
February 1stI see Boy & Bear make it to #5 on Triple J's Hottest 100 with their cover of "Fall at your Feet" from "He will have his way" cd. Not bad.
Lilly Tomlin is in Australia, she'll be part of Sydney's Mardi Gra procession , she's great, loved her on the West Wing. You go girl! Lilly T the queen of Mardi Gra!
My 10.30 appointment with Warrick #2 (Dr Chiro)- I take my nano iPod these days it's great nice and chilled out- he baits me with some spin on "musical quality"... I leave all corrected and recharged. My Chiro is the best, in the world!!!!
Meanwhile up north cyclone NASI is getting meaner and looks like having landfall between Cairns and Townsville, so our lovely Magnetic Island is in firing range. Really if there was a God this sort of stuff wouldn't happen, especially to Queensland that has suffered enough from the floods.
February 2ndWe head off and drop Tania's birthday present in... they are talking of getting some chickens so we give them a 30kg bag of chicken food and a card. No one is home so we break into their backyard and leave it with a big red ribbon and birthday card. Buddy the dog runs out to greet us and we have a roll about on the lawn.
We head to the bank and we are changing the companies bank accounts, so cancel the old account but have to make some special meeting to do the new bank account- a bit of a drag. Eat at Montainia.
I'm home and get an email from some distant friends who are stuck on Magnetic Island as the ferry service has closed. Thankfully I kept my various contact cards and called the boat guy that I've spoken to a few times. He's like a Captain Ahab- "It's a wee bit choppy"... but he organises a pickup and drops them within walking distance to the secure storm shelter at Townsville. My good deed for the year. The Island will get a wallop, the last bad cyclone was 1971 and 90% of the houses on the island were destroyed. You know wet weather will start heading down the coast to Victoria so our sunny days are numbered.
I call Tania in the afternoon to wish her a happy birthday, she said she had a few texts but no one really called. If anyone text me Happy Birthday I'd tell them to go get fucked- it's about as lame as you can get- hell how long does it take someone to make an effort to call. Sorry I hate text around such things- urgh urgh urgh.
February 3rdI've heard that a Steve Kilbey piece of art that I acquired is on it's way from the States. I am amazed at how cheap it was, very Van Gogh-ish. It's called "Last Night On Earth". So a self portrait of Steve from The Church... nice colours as well. One for the collection, from the lead singer of The Church.
I have no idea what triggered this off, possibly some chat on the internet. All day I have been getting this trickle of emails from Split Enz fans wanting the LUTON sessions, CD, the special 2 disc fanclub cds. We bought the final batch of stock from Warners awhile back so we are the only place where you can get this brilliant 2 cd set. I had about 1/2 a box left but a few go every day now. It's great in one way as it means more and more people get to hear these fantastic Enz recordings from a period that I love so much. Anyway I'm not going to try and second guess why the sudden influx of Luton emails- but have to say when we send them out I like that this cool release will be appreciated by Enz fans. Sometimes it just takes a few people chatting on line and everyone wants a copy before they are gone forever.
I had an idea for fans to ask Crowded House's Mark Hart a question each, for the upcoming Crowdies "Ghost Cars" book, I like the idea that the bands fans can have some connection, make sit a bit special too- and they'll have their name next to the question in the book if it's used. Mark's into it- such a cool guy.
February 4thWe head to the bank (again) in the morning for a business meeting, really just to reshape an account and change a small mountain of paper work. I couldn't just do it across the counter a few days ago-this bit requires "a meeting". The bank guy was nice but it seemed to go on forever.
Well the rain has started in Victoria, we are getting the tail end of the cyclone and it's starting to pelt down. Parts of the city started flooding quickly. I was watching the 24 hour news channel and saw Hessies original house at Elwood with water up to the door way from the flooded canals. Greg Skyhook was only saying the other day how it never floods at Elwood just blocked drains... boy was he wrong. Dorothea McKellars poem comes to mind as I write this- ..."I love a sunburnt country, a land of sweeping plains, of ragged mountain ranges, of droughts and flooding rains". Well mother nature sure is giving us a bit of a battering, the climate is really out of control... the 'flooding rains' have indeed arrived.
The heavy rain stays with us all night. Such a great house this one, not a single drip of water inside.
February 5thI feed the chickens and decide to check on the natural drains near the 2nd entrance to our property. Thankfully we hassled the council a few times to do all the streets so they were clear of wood and leaves..the water was ripping through it- like some super fast water slide at Splash Down World. Pity any small creatures that would fall in they'd be sent down the road in 5 seconds flat.
Spend the day inside, watch Melbourne suburbs getting saturated. Well the rain is better then fires....
February 6thAround midday the sun finally comes out- so maybe the rain has gone. West Gippsland had huge areas evacuated last night, some places were about to mark the 2nd anniversary of the black saturday bushfires- but they were washed out. If it's not fires it's flood. What a tough old place to live this country can be.
Neil is in England again in April- 2 solo shows-so the Frenz will be happy. In a few days I'll send out a pre sale link via the VIP email service, so that will keep me busy for awhile. Already the mere mention of some Neil Finn shows has filled up my IN box. One Venue only holds 350 people so it will be an intimate crowd at that one.
That's it for now.