Saturday, July 28, 2012

The good the bad and the ugly- July 2012

 The Good: Things that help with dieting - Shit snacks in the cupboard!

I have tried a thousand diets.. Ok..being the lazy dieter that I am, I have tried them in my minds eye and could see that they wouldn't work..mostly because I LOVE food....and I am lazy.
So... I found a new diet.. the no food diet.. yes, it goes against my ideology that food is yum and must be eaten... and yes, any nutritionist and/or sensible person would clearly see this is a crazy and stupid diet that NO ONE should do.. however... I have  lost of couple of kilos and that is all that matters!

One amazing thing I have found is that when and if you can't cut out snacks.. you need to buy 'Shit snacks'. Yep, SHIT SNACKS, and by that I mean food that looks, smells and tastes disgusting.
Recently I purchased some ridiculously  priced 'root vegetable chips'. Even whilst looking at them I found myself thinking 'why would anyone think that parsnips and turnips would make tasty chips?' Soon after, whilst watching a film one night and feeling like a snack (even though I wasn't hungry!), I reached for the 'root vegetable chips'.. and yah, just as I suspected, they were HORRIBLE! To make matters worse,  they were LOW SALT!!!! Why sweet Jesus, why??? Being a trooper, I tried to plough on... I really did, but even if I was STARVING and hadn't eaten for a YEAR! I doubt I would have been able to eat those shit snacks,  which quickly went into my rubbish bin, cause I didn't even want that shit in my compost bin or worm farm.. cause you know those low salt shit snack nutrients were only going to go back into my garden, into the vegies and yep.. back on my dinner table and straight back to me!

So dear friends, if you are having trouble dieting, due to excess snacking.. the trick is to stock up on shit snacks, because when you do open them.. and you will, they will be so horrible that you won't want to finish eating them and there in lies a small victory for your waistline!!!!

The Bad: Sexual and romantic tension at the dentist's

A good mate, who was sick of me complaining about 'driving for an hour to see my expensive dentist across town', had enough and finally referred me to her dentist, who is not only great, charges reasonable rates, but importantly is only a 15 min ride away.  My first visit was an emergency, which uncovered some other work that needed to be done.... So, once the emergency was resolved, the dentist mapped out a treatment plan for the one billion other fillings I need (yes, I have terrible teeth). I was surprised that my old dentists hadn't picked this all up, given I see him every 6 months for a check up AND generally have X-rays done.

Anyway, my new Dentist, here forth know as the Dentist, has lovely green eyes.... and when I am in the chair, his warm soft hands gently caress my face as he delicately works on my mouth. At the end of each session, what would usually be a normal 'blokey' kind of  handshake, instead sees his large warm soft hands gently, but firmly enfolding my smaller our eyes meet above, seemingly whispering to each other...
Yep... True! My friends think that I am making this all up.. I got to the point where I thought, Maybe I was reading this differently to what was really happening, then came my last visit to see him. He hadn't filed a new filling down enough and I couldn't really bite down without feeling awkward and uncomfortable. So, I go back to get it corrected and despite the friend who referred me saying the dentist was gruff, rough and unattractive... he was once again, warm and gentle with me. We actually had this tender and awkward moment where he thanked me for being able to come back in, and I said 'no, no, thank you, for being able to fit me in'.. and he smiled this broad warm smile and said 'not at all'.... and then I think he said something like it was his pleasure...and we stood there awkwardly in silence and I finally said.. 'umm, I guess I better go, thanks'... and said 'um yeah sure' and smiled....both of us feeling like teenagers in love....

So, I think there is sexual/romantic tension there  (ok, maybe not tension, but it makes it sound more DRAMATIC!).. and I think the only way forward is for my dentist and I to date and maybe even cut to the chase and just be intimate and loving and make babies who will be blessed with good dental hygiene.... but my fear is for my friends, who are his current patients. Because if it doesn't work out between the Dentist and me... then where does that leave them, his patients? Like any immature break up, will they have to choose a 'side', or will he just cut them loose, cause they are 'my friends'??  I am definitely not immature, but I can't really speak for the Dentist!

The Ugly: Guilt

It is winter here and we are having the winters I recall from many years back- cold, wet and crap. I have to say I am loving them for a change. We have not long come out of a ten (plus) year drought and we have water back in our dams again!!!  Anyway, recently I saw a film with a mate and he was running pretty instead of waiting alone in the cinema foyer, which had no heating except for one oil column heater that three people were already crowded around...!!!!  I decided to walk to the local video store which was only a few shops away, and kill time browsing their shelves in the small, cosy and warm shop... sounds good, except that when I opened the door to the shop and let in an Artic blast... the owner was right there and copped it all. He looked up and seeing it was me, warmed up and was like 'Oh, hello Matthew how are you going?'... AWKWARD!!! I made pleasantries and then started to 'Faux browse'.. Then I started to panic and think about how I am wasting his time and heating and they don't make much money, and are such a great store and get things in when you ask.... so now I thinking of how to get out of this, without having to borrow a film... and my plans are becoming more and more elaborate... I could feign a panic attack and leave in a cloud of sympathy, I could pretend to take a call on my mobile and go further and pretend there is a crises/emergency and run out of the shop yelling 'JUST WAIT! Just WAIT!, I'll be there, HOLD ON!!!'...then I hit JACKPOT! and start to look for films that I know they should have and checking to see if they are out... Finally I find one and go up to the counter and ask if it is in.. the owner taps away at the computer.. 'oh, sorry matthew that film is out and not due back for a few more days'... I, being a NIDA graduate (not really), channel 'loss, disappointment and frustration'... 'Oh NO!!!! I was so looking forward to that film!!! I give out a couple of loud 'TSKS'.. I look about annoyed 'There was nothing else I wanted...' I put on my sad face, my body lurches with dejection and then for some reason, not even known to me, I say "I've gotta go, I've gotta go!" quickly and repeatedly like a crazy person, glare at the owner in anger  and then I rush back out into the cold.

I guess I'd rather be cold and guilt free, than warm and full of guilt that would have made me break down and cry like a baby!!!. When my mate finally arrived at the cinema, I told him about what had happened. He just looked at me dumbfounded and explained that there was another alternative, which was to be upfront about why I was there.. Who would have thought???

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Walking about Melbourne in Winter

Last month, we have had a few wonderful winters days. You know those day's where the sun is shining and warm....So I grabbed my camera and walked about taking photographs.

The city's edge, with Nadia:

The beautiful Nadia:

A mate and I down in North Melbourne's industrial area on a glorious winter's day:

It does rain here.. and this year we had a LOT of rain, but come on, you don't expect me to take me camera out in the wet do you?

Here are a couple of shots I took from inside my car while I was stuck at traffic lights with the rain washing down, blurring the view out of the windscreen. I pointed the camera out across an inner city intersection at a very bright and colourful new building.

After the rain:

Wet footpaths and steamy windows :

Reflections in the puddles -Westgarth:

All Photographs copyright Matthew Schiavello 2012

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Six reasons to like Blur

Unfortunately, or fortunately, Blur came to many peoples attentions via the silly 'Oasis V's Blur' headlines in the UK media in the mid 1990's. Apart from encapsulating the 'Brit-pop' sound, Blur were a great band that experimented with their format and sound. I should probably stop saying 'were', as they are back together and have a couple of new songs! "Under the Westway" and "The Puritan". Aside from having really strong singles such as Girls and Boys, Parklife and Song 2, Blur seemed to be able to change and avoid stagnation, whilst still retaining fans and sales. Their 2009 'reunion' concerts in Hyde park were massive and the audience sang along word for word for most of the set. Amazingly, despite worldwide hits, tours and long-stays, Blur seemed to have kept a very quintessential English-ness in their sound. Especially in tunes such as; Country House, Charmless man, Parklife, Beetlebum, & Coffee and TV (to name but a few). I was always envious of how guitarist Graham Coxon treated his guitar as if it was capable of more than playing chords and solo's, in doing so, he has claimed his own sound. Not surprisingly, singer Damon Albarn has gone on to be the guiding party in many great projects from Mali Music, to Gorillaz. So, in the wake of Blur's release of two new tracks, their previous Lp's being re-released on Quality Vinyl (and me re-buying the self titled 1997 LP), here are 6 good reasons to like blur! With a special thanks to Dean G, for his feedback on my chosen tracks!

'Charmless man' is a single I wish I wrote. It is off the brilliant  1995 lp 'The Great Escape'.
This track is filled with lines such as:

'Educated the expensive way
He knows his claret from a beaujolais
I think he'd like to have been Ronnie Kray
But then nature didn't make him that way

He thinks his educated airs, those family shares
Will protect him, that you will respect him
He moves in circles of friends who just pretend that they like him'

"Charmless man"

'No distance left to run' is the song about the end of Damon's relationship with Justine Frischmann. Such a powerful and beautifully sad song. It might just be one man's pain, but it is universally understood.

"No distance left to run" (Live on Jool's Holland in 1999)

New Track: Under the Westway. One of two new singles. Good to see the band back and making new music!

"Under the Westway"

Released as a new track on their 'best off' in 2000, 'Music is my radar' showed all of us that not only were Blur still relevant, but they were still making great music.

"Music is my radar"

Blur's last lp was 2003's 'Think Tank'. From it comes the beautiful "Out of time". During the recording of this album, guitarist Graham Coxon left the band. Much was reported at the time about the tensions between Graham and Damon, but instead of going into sordid details, let us instead enjoy this most beautiful tune. I am not a fan of the clip, but close your eyes and just enjoy. Oh, and Dean made mention of the fact that Blur followed up 'Out of Time' with what he considers their all-time worst single 'Crazy Beat'! Graham's absence was really noticeable on that track!

"Out of time"

This next song was a massive hit EVERYWHERE. I still love it and am energised by it still. Plus I love that at the 2 minute mark, it doesn't outstay its welcome.

"Song 2"

Lastly, an extra bonus track is 'Coffee & TV'. Not only added, as a thank you to Dean G who has always liked this track, as do I, but also because Graham the guitarist, sings on this one and the video is quite cute!
"Coffee & TV"

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Busking in Melbourne: Reuben Stone

Recently I was kept waiting at the State Library by my brother in law. He was really, really late, so to kill time I asked a busker that was playing near by, if I could take some shots of him playing. I have to say this busker, Reuben Stone, is a great muso. He sounded brilliant and apparently has a record coming out! Make sure you check out his Facebook page.

Starting to get cold.. it is Winter!!

All Photographs copyright Matthew Schiavello 2012