March 8thUp early, feels good. The first Crowded House New Zealand show finally happens in a few days time. I hear they are playing Bowie's "Heroes' in the encore. The Music Industry is in such a terrible state, in some areas 90% unemployed. At least with these few Crowded House shows some employment for a few people too. With a world shut down it could mean they are the biggest concerts on the planet. How weird is that?
March 9thMy good deed for the day, help out an older lady at the ATM at Montrose. You have to be careful of such things as I'm sure people are suspicious of good deeds in 2021.
I email a few photos to the record company for possible use at Michael Gudinski's , public memorial. I didn't have a lot but a few are kind of cool. The tickets for the memorial will go so quickly. I make a note to let people know that it will be broadcast via the Victorian State Governments website. Rod Laver is a decent size place for this but the media have mentioned it over and over so I guess the tickets will be gobbled up, add to that Covid social distancing around the seats.
March 10thMark admits he moved my Neil Young "WAR" & "Greatest Hits" cds. I knew it wasn't me. HA! There will be punishment.
I keep wondering why the new Crowded House single isn't charting, especially in NZ with such huge shows - tonight being the first in NZ. It should really of been on a vinyl 45 for the Crowdies collectors. I'm sure it would of sold out, I guess they have become an "album selling" band.
I received an email this morning around Michaels funeral gathering at Ormond Hall. I loved the honour guard of Roadies- magnificent. Thinking of you Geoff Lloyd. I'm not really that close to Michael or family , so I'm glad they are limiting it to a smaller gathering.
March 11thMark loves his Easter Egg chocolate Platypus. I remember when I was very little my grandfather came home with a platypus in a wet hessian sack. The tiny creek at Carrs bush has become polluted and he had rescued it. I was amazed by this incredible creature, and very careful when cleaning it. I'm guessing it was a female as I can't recall being warned of the spur on the hind leg (the females are born with spurs but they fall off during adulthood). It ended up at Taronga Zoo, I remember we went across on the ferry and the Opera House was still being constructed. Isn't it funny how a chocolate platypus can ignite such strong memories.
We catch up with a whole host of people at Montage today. Everyone excited that Marky was visiting too. Royalty he has become.
I give Lisa Munday some support for the WA seat of Dawesville. The WA election in a few days and it would be incredible for Lisa to win that seat. Labor have never won it before, but a good chance. She'll make a great local member.
March 12thTickets for Michael Gudinski's Memorial at Rod Laver Arena all went quickly. I guess that makes it the largest "gig" in Australia this month as far as crowd numbers. He'd LOVE that!
March 13thWay way back in 1972 on this day the infamous Number 96 commenced on Australian TV. Known as the night Australian TV lost it's virginity , it has massive ratings and endless front pages and awards. So far ahead of it's time, the first homosexual character in a tv show, FULL frontal nudity. bomb blasts , transgender performers like Carlotta, panty hose stranglers (thank God someone finally strangled Arnold feathers wife Patty!), and the Chandler Brothers who I thought were rather sexy at my very young age... as well as Marilyn McDonald!! What a show! Nothing like it anywhere in the world at the time, can you imagine American TV having full frontal nudity in 1972?
I settle down to watch the Western Australian State election. What a shock that is, ABC election guy Antony Green calls a win for Labor after 30 minutes. Mind blowing. The last election Labor slaughtered the Liberals, and this election far far more of a bloodletting. The WA Liberals have nearly lost ALL seats. They end up with a mere TWO, even The Nationals have more (4). Labor win 53 seats, and many electorates that Labor have never had. I'm extra happy that Lisa Munday does win the seat of Dawesville, taking it off the useless Liberal leader-so he is now out of a job. This could well be the largest Liberal loss on record.
March 14Happy Birthday to our mate Mary!
I'm catching up with a friend at Olinda. Like us, he is a big fan of Barbara Feldon. (Get Smart). Imagine that show with no 99, it wouldn't work. One of my favourite singles is from 1966. Barbara Feldon released the song "99" (B-side of course is "Max"). Such cool lyrics. " You're the highest paid informer for a Balkan state, On your night off, you invite her for a dinner date, But if she freshens up, then you'll be unemployed, 'Cause that ain't a lipstick, buddy, that's a Polaroid ..."
March 15thDoug Parkinson dies age 74, so another aussie musician gone. Mark thought i said David Parkinson just died, which is my cousin that he went to school with! No!
What a surprise the last ten minutes of the NZ documentary film "There is No "i" in Threesome. I can't recall this unique moment happening in any other film, and I'm not going to give the same away. But clever. A film about polyamory that isn't as it seems.
March 16thI see "Millhouse" O'Brien survives a challenge from within the Vic Liberal Party. Great news for Vic Labor-with O'Brien as 'leader' , the Vic Libs will remain in the political wilderness for decades.
I head out to the vegetable patch and pick a lot of the cucumbers that are growing. Limited with what we can use them for but Mark is thrilled that I'm going to make a pile of Tzatziki dip. The secret is to try and remove as much cucumber juice as possible, gross as it sounds i wring the grated cucumber out with my hands. But it seems to work.
March 17thThe sun's out so today I'm working on one of our nature strips. Trying to join two big long green halves together. A huge area that has to be removed , mostly blackberries, bamboo. I've decided just to fill one green bin a week. Seems easier that way, takes forever but I make a serious dent today. Charlotte drops by and we have a chat while i work. She's great with gardening tips and very generously gave us some big pots of chives.
March 18thI keep returning to Laura Jane Grace for some music with an edge. I've heard her stuff in a few documentaries lately and enjoy it. So 2021, here am I, gardening to a transgender singer up in the wilds of Kalorama. More power to her.
A strange coincidence. We are watching Batwoman and a real live bat is flying around our loungeroom. Miss Banshee is way too excited so she is cast out to Marks bedroom till we capture and release it. Just a tiny bat , now flying free over the houses of Kalorama.
March 19thNo local Covid infections in Victoria for 21 days now. Good effort Victoria.
Mary and a group of us at Montage today. I rarely do weekends up there so a Friday afternoon catch up is good. One of my F/16 diary readers comes up and says 'hello'! (Hi there Mick). Sometimes it throws me when people come up and I stare at them trying to put a name to the face, Every so often I get it right. I tend to forget just how many people frequent the diary page. In May it will be 25 years since the diary first started on line. A quarter of a century of my ramblings. Heaven help us all. Thank you for returning time and time again.
March 20thA sunny Saturday. Probably one of the last for awhile, the weather is changing, you can feel it, especially around 3.00 in the morning. I head to the office and put up a few posts on Sheepbook. I took a snap of our old stomping ground of Wollongong Town Hall. It was such a wild venue when the two very young teenagers would see so many bands at that venue. AC/DC with the mighty Bon Scott-plus a huge street riot out front after the show, my first Split Enz show, Skyhooks "Brats are Back" 1976 . Even Crowded House played the Town Hall later on as an end of year dance for a girls school.
March 21stAn overcast day, some fog but the rain outside has stopped so I head out to take a few photos of some flowers that seem to only blossom during this sort of colder weather. I'm on the East lawn and by chance look up and see two misty orbs floating in our yard. They have little wiggly tails of gas and heading upwards. I just stare at them, nothing unnerving about them. I do the count, to get it right as far as how long they "exist". 7 seconds. The best part, I have a camera with me so manage a shot and it's pretty cool. You can see that they are moving up. I'm sure someone will say "swamp gas" (without the swamp). I just accept that they existed. I am stoked, I did get a decent photo.
March 22ndThe power is meant to go off at Kalorama for maintenance but it doesn't happen. Somewhat annoying as you plan for a day without electricity, usually we escape and go on a shopping trip and have some fun. We end up at The Deli, sitting at the tables out front and yapping to locals.
Noel Crombie has gone awol. I have this fantasy moment that the Enz are off rehearsing in Melbourne for a guest appearance at Michaels Memorial in 2 days at Rod Laver but I know that won't be the case. Noel is missing, where is God? Gone fishing?
March 23rdWow heavy fog. I open the back door and it's like a solid wall of fog. It is freaky. I push my arm through it as it is so thick it looks solid. It hangs around all day and still fogbound in the evening when I go to Kalorama oval for a jog. I walk past the tree where I had the golden angel hanging in the ancient dried out wreath and some bastard has taken the Angel. They did however leave a packet of sparklers, and it is a well known fact that Gryphons love sparklers, so I light one up and take a photo in the fog. Pretty Pretty!
March 24thMichael Gudinski's Memorial is on today and I have a mate going into hospital. So i spend some time with them and make sure they are fine, eventually get to the Memorial side of the day. I have to say i was impressed with Jimmy Barnes daughter Mahalia singing the national anthem. A nice send off , so many things I didn't know about the man especially the charity side which was great to discover. Like him or not one has to respect his genuine love of Australian Music. He wasn't a saint (though he did support St Kilda!. HA!) but his efforts should be applauded. If Mushroom hadn't signed Skyhooks or Split Enz who knows where we might be. Anyway a warm wonderful send off from the people of Melbourne, great to see. 8000+ and 220,000 watched it on line.
March 25thI paid our PO Box 50, Kalorama for another year, plus a few other bills. Bills are boring eh? Nice when they are out of the way.
I remember to call and email Jane for her birthday. Also i check on our mate Chris and give Allie a call. The birthday list has started again, Mark is so good at birthdays, I am shite.
Noel Crombie has turned up, alive and well, we have a really nice chat. God lives!
March 26thPaul Hester gone for 16 years now. I woke up at some silly hour and he popped into my head. Some years around this anniversary are better, then others. I felt a lot sadder this year, could just be the grey skies outside. All of that changed in the afternoon, after I sent out a few Paul RIP tweets and images. One of Pauls early childhood friends Glenn sent me some pictures of him in 1975. Dressed up with some mates , excited because they were going to their first Skyhooks and AC/DC concert. Paul as Skyhooks Greg Macainsh in that white cowboy suit, laughing like crazy. His girlfriend Jill from Sth Belgrave dressed as Angus. Paul would of been around 15 or 16. Anyway great photos and brightened up our day. I email the snap to Skyhook Greg as I knew he'd appreciate Pauls dress up efforts. I'm wondering if I should of issued a stalker alert all those years ago as Hessie bought the house almost behind Greg . Maybe he wanted to pinch a white cowboy suit off Gregs clothesline? Anyway another year goes by, Rest in Peace Paulo.
I hear from Neil and Nick , Crowded House have the day off in NZ , so are all heading out to dinner in Napier, and sharing some Hessie stories. Nice one guys.
March 27thI wake up very early with the sniffles and sneezing. Some of our mates have had that cold and flu bug going about and I wonder if I have that. I decide to bite the bullet and take a flu tablet. It kind of helps, a bit trippy. My trippiness made worse later when I take a hayfever tablet. Mary wants to go to Montage , so I say Yes, a coffee would be nice, plus I need to visit the Deli. I meet her at the car park at the oval and I'm smiling like an out of it cheshire cat. Montage seemed rather wild, and lots at the tables- Josie, Pete, Peter and Mark, Carol, John, Mick, and Frank brings in his extended family. So much chatter.
I take a break from it and head to the shops to buy some bread and some presents. The radio is on in one and the Uncanny X-Men are on singing "Still Waiting". It would be decades since I've heard that song, and all i could do was laugh. Fun memories of heading to the old gas works with Laura to be killer Zombies. I sensibly wear my red converse runners so I know which Zombie I am in the finished music video. Drummer Craig riding in on his motorbike and shooting both Laura and myself with a shot gun, I'm the first Zombie to fall. My face explodes. The song eventually making the top 20 in Melbourne. Fun days.
March 28thBanshee sleeping too much during the days and not enough at night. She suddenly wants food at 4.00 in the morning, etc. So I wake up sleepy eyed this morning, Marky letting me sleep in. We love her but old cats can be exhausting. She climbs up for a cat cuddle, so instantly forgiven.
Melbourne now up to 30 consecutive days with no local Covid cases. Good to hear. A few tiny break outs around the country but overall Australia seems to be on top of it. The Premiers deserve huge applause.
Good luck Crowded House with your last New Zealand show.
Terrible shootings in Myanmar, 114 dead, some of them children , shot by security forces, the most brutal crackdown on pro-democracy protestors so far. So much for Senior General Min Aung Hlaing stating the military would protect the people and strive for democracy. The armed forces should hang their heads in shame.
Victorias grid runs on 50% renewable energy for the first time. Fantastic news. The sun will still be shining down on us long after the last piece of FINITE coal is ripped out of the ground. We love our solar!
Stay safe and happy.