You are here: home > archives > December 2008

December 31, 2008

the girl said no!

John Held Jr., The Girl Said No, 1930
Originally uploaded by Gatochy

"the girl said no!" was posted by dogpossum on December 31, 2008 4:45 PM in the category lindy hop and other dances | Comments (0)

oh no

Faceplant and twitter are killing my blog. Or, more accurately, my blogging skills. I haven't written a longer and thought-out entry in ages. I was never one for hardcore planning and editing (I just write straight into MT here, then do a bit of cursary editing once it's published), but the one-line update has killed of what little stamina I had. But I do update regularly.
I do quite like the short, one-line update. I like experimenting with content and style. I like using lines from songs I'm listening to (most of which are oooold and fairly dirty), and I've just started adding sections from books I'm reading (for review). Yesterday, while adding a few bits from a book I'm reading about censorship, I was suddenly struck by the potential of one-line updates. If you have a group of friends, either on faceplant or twitter, you have a group of 'listeners'. If you write something provocative, you'll get responses (and the interesting bit is seeing which things turn out to be provocative - it's difficult to plan these things, I think). The really nice bit is, of course, the replies. What short answers does a one-line comment from you, on your 'profile' (showing up in their feeds on their pages) stimulate in your group of 'friends'? And then, what answers do their answers stimulate?
I'm a little frustrated by the short answer option, sometimes - I want to read a longer, thought-out comment in response to an update. But then, I think the shorter answers keep us reading. It's more of a conversation and less of a series of lectures or conference papers.
This all made me think: couldn't you use this feature to encourage learning? I mean, I don't think it's going to work if you announce a teaching mission, or even if you demand your students use faceplant or twitter or whatever (I prefer faceplant for the way it threads responses - though twitter might have the option, I'm not sure). But it could work if you were sneaky. And if your group of friends has 'naturally' formed around a shared interest or even just a shared relationship.

I've also been interested in the way a 'high status' poster/personality/friend, who has a larger group of friends stimulates discussion. If they post just one comment (on a photo, an update, a note), the hits for that comment (and that page) leap. This isn't anything new - this sort of thing is played out in more familiar public spheres, when a TV star (celebrity) comments, when an MP visits, when a famous scientist opines. But I'm interested in the way these statuses play out on a smaller scale, within peer groups.
A 'high profile' personality might simply be an agreeable sort - someone you like to talk with in person, someone whose comments entertain you. In the dancing world, the 'high profile' person is almost always a 'famous' dancer. But on faceplant, the highest 'high profile' personality always has a large group of friends (a large audience), offers something to these friends (interesting comments, funny jokes, and so on) and posts regularly. They have a high profile. There are, of course, gender correlations (at least within the online world of swing dancers).

I have a friend whose comments (on both faceplant and twitter) are not only very clever and funny, but also kind and socially gentle. She doesn't score points with cheap jibes. But she is assertive and 'present' as a speaker as well as a listener. In my mind, I'm equating lurking with listening. On facebook - as with discussion boards and blogs - the number of listeners always far outweighs the speakers. Which of course lets us think about the way speakers gain social status but listeners do not, and yet listeners are essential for the success of any speech or comment.

At any rate, though these things are boiling away in the back of my brain, I'm not writing long posts any more. Nor am I writing any academic posts. I found that I was at my most prolific academically when I was also writing masses online, whether on my blog or on discussion boards. I was also reading a whole lot. These days I'd say my feelings about writing and reading aren't so good. In fact, I'm not happy. I'm very unhappy with my inability to get full time work. I guess it's your typical overachieving academic crisis: so many years depending on educational institutions for a sense of self worth, and then suddenly I'm outside that system and there's no more affirmation. It doesn't help that I can't do any serious exercise (but I'm off to yoga next week, so things will improve there I hope). No lovely endorphines. None of that interpersonal interaction you get dancing. There's nothing quite as wonderful as partner dancing - two people working together, communicating without talking to make something lovely and creative - and there's no partner dancing like lindy hop. Jazz, sweet jazz - you make me happy.
But I'm struck by the way my satisfaction and inspiration in writing and reading is so necessarily social. Can't I just enjoy my own company? I think it's more that while I am very good company and terribly interesting ( :D ), I actually really enjoy listening to other people's ideas. And there's nothing so stimulating and exciting as having your brain stretched by someone else's great ideas. I mean, you'd never have come across that thought without their inspiration - how wonderful is that?

All of this post was inspired by Lisa Gunder's excellent post about teaching over on Memes of Production. I was struck by her comments about the relationship between casualised communication and students' _not_ doing the [opposite to casualised] sort of learning we expect from them. I also liked her comment (and do read through the article to the comments):

Most young people do, in my experience, care about issues and have opinions on politics. Sometimes you get glimpses of this in class, but inside or outside of class this frequently seems to be the bit of their lives that they keep private even if the rest of it is lived out online or on mobiles.

I think this is a fascinating point, that students (in a world where they broadcast all sorts of things about themselves online and via their mobiles) keep their politics and feelings about issues private. I think I agree with this. And I think I'd also add that these students don't often seem to have confidence in their ideas - they're reluctant to explain how they feel about something in class because they're afraid they'll look stupid or say the wrong thing. I wonder if this is because there's such great pressure to pass their subjects and get their degree. They don't seem to have the time or space to sort of mosey along, taking intellectual risks and generally playing with ideas. When I enrolled in my BA in 1993 I had no idea where I wanted to go with my study. I just chose subjects (from the absolute wealth on offer at UQ in those days) that interested me. And I really enjoyed tutorials and writing assignments - I liked talking and writing and sharing ideas. I was also very, very lucky to have tutors who were - for the most part - interested in my ideas. And they weren't massively overworked. And they were - quite often - staff members, not sessional teachers or postgraduates.
It makes me sad to think of my students not feeling brave enough or having enough time or even the interest to explore ideas. I think perhaps that this reluctance is encouraged by the way we structure assessment. I once taught a subject that had fabulous cumulative assessment. The first assignment was a literature review for a project. The second required them to plan out the project (but not actually complete it - which most of them found frustrating!). I had also taken great pains to develop tutorials (which ran for two hours, not the ridiculous one we had last semester) as places for discussing these projects. It was so wonderful to see them introducing their projects in the earlier part of the class (where we'd all just chat about the media we'd been getting into in the last week - and which we all enjoyed) and then commenting on each other's projects and offering suggestions. As their knowledge about research techniques and theory improved, so did the depth of their discussion. It was wonderful. Perhaps the best bit was seeing their confidence in their own knowledge increase, and their sense of 'ownership' of their project deepen. These guys really felt that their work was interesting, their ideas were important, and that they were doing something no one else could, simply because of who they were. I also made it clear that it was ok (if not preferable) to work on stuff that interested them - to choose topics or media that they were really interested in (I have written about this teaching stuff here).

So I guess I'm going to sum all this up by saying that I really enjoyed Lisa's post - it's as lovely and nice as she is in person. I am also definite that I need intellectual stimulation, and that self-stimulation isn't enough. I will endeavour to write and read more and to try to be more creative with the way I use faceplant and twitter updates (did you see I had my twitter feed up the top of that left column now?) and will have a bigger think about teaching tools.

Also, happy new year, homies. :D

"oh no" was posted by dogpossum on December 31, 2008 11:53 AM in the category academia and clicky and teaching


Suddenly I'm very very excited

"europeana" was posted by dogpossum on December 31, 2008 11:41 AM in the category clicky | Comments (0)

December 29, 2008

self pity

I haven't danced in five weeks and listening to dancing music is making me crazy. It's horrible. Can't get to the specialist til after the 5th January. Poor me. :(

"self pity" was posted by dogpossum on December 29, 2008 11:05 AM in the category lindy hop and other dances | Comments (0)

December 27, 2008

CW Stoneking

CW Stoneking reminds me more of Beck (when he was doing all the ol' timey blues stuff characterised best by his album One Foot In The Grave) than of anyone else.
Nor do I think Stoneking sounds 'black' - he sounds like one of those good ole boys from somewhere in the south. It's something in his timing or his phrasing... something in the way he treats timing. I keep thinking of that line I read somewhere, that music reflects the vocal or linguistic structures of the people who create it. Singing 'black' is more than adding in an accent. It's about intonation and a subtler sense of pitch - more than just going 'up' and the end a sentence to make something sound Australian.
Anyways, I scored both his CDs for christmas from The Squeeze and I like them both a lot.

"CW Stoneking" was posted by dogpossum on December 27, 2008 10:55 PM in the category digging and music | Comments (1)

December 26, 2008

i need that little nibble more

We are sitting on the malodorous settee listening to CW Stoneking (pwning present, Squeeze!) and playing on our laptops. I have just finished all the cashews. I have also eaten the last gingerbread tree biscuit. The Squeeze has eaten the last mince tart. Neither of us can bare another piece of turkey, though we are thinking about having meat cake* and tomato soup for dinner.
The Squeeze has been making his way through some chocolate hearts (the 2nd mother apparently has a standing order with her chocalatier). I thought I might fancy a nibble of milky chocolate.
"Can I have a lick of that chocolate?"
I look up to see him carefully transporting it from his mouth to the wrapper. It is largely intact and has only a thin layer of kiss. I decide I need that little nibble more than we need to adhere to The Rules.

*aka stuffing that has not been stuffed into anything.

"i need that little nibble more" was posted by dogpossum on December 26, 2008 5:48 PM in the category domesticity and fewd and gastropod and melbourne | Comments (0)

December 25, 2008

mid-christmas time-wasting

The turkey is in the oven (since 11, eta 1.30), the custard is made (using, once again, Delia's recipe), prawn recipe is floating somewhere in my near-conscious mind. Not at the front, though. That's occupied with:
- cherries (eating)
- 'I like pie, I like cake' (courtesy of the Goofus 5) is my christmas theme song (finally, I succumb and am playing it over and over so I can finally exorcise it)
- possible timing for roast potatoes
- phoning parents (who're in Brisvegas for christmas with the brother before they fly out to Hong Kong for awesome new year action)
- emusic (goddamn it... I just can't stay away. Now it's Ruth Brown with this awesomely-80s-covered album)

There's more family on the way for lunch, and we have now called the international family, so that's all done. For the hour before lunch, this lot (the Squeeze's mum etc) have all disbanded to various spots around the house and garden for reading books, playing ipod games and fiddling about on the internet.

There's no trifle this year (though I have hope for later in January), but food-wise, it's not too shabby. In the spirit of christmas awesomeness, here's Delia and Snoop Dog makin' wid de potato magic.

"mid-christmas time-wasting" was posted by dogpossum on December 25, 2008 12:06 PM in the category domesticity | Comments (0)

December 22, 2008

be good tanyas

Emusic is doing more than just bringing me good jazz, blues and soul. It's also reminding me of my passion for bluegrass and 'American traditionals'. I bought the Be Good Tanyas' first album when I first moved to Melbourne. I think I lasered the grooves out of it.
I'm afraid to look at Amanda's list. I know I'll only add a zillion albums to my Want list.

That 250gb of birthday computer space isn't going to last too long at this rate.

"be good tanyas" was posted by dogpossum on December 22, 2008 11:18 PM in the category digging and music | Comments (1)

December 21, 2008

willie dixon and memphis slim's Willie's Blues


Willie Dixon and Memphis Slim's 'Willie Blues'.

Emusic has me by the throat.
The Deadwood soundtrack* is, once again, fascilitating my unhealthy desires.

Not to mix a metaphor...

*more specifically, the (songs played over the credits of Deadwood)

"willie dixon and memphis slim's Willie's Blues" was posted by dogpossum on December 21, 2008 10:08 PM in the category djing and lindy hop and other dances and music and objects of desire | Comments (3)

December 20, 2008

ballin' the jack

If I ever get full use of my limbs back, I'm totally ballin' the jack.

"ballin' the jack" was posted by dogpossum on December 20, 2008 12:29 PM in the category lindy hop and other dances | Comments (1)

December 19, 2008

theme no.3

(of 1 and 2)


The emusic logo thing.

"theme no.3" was posted by dogpossum on December 19, 2008 2:47 PM in the category clicky | Comments (0)

sweetness of sweetnesses

Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings supported by the Ray Mann 3. Could there be anything more wonderful? I don't think so.

"sweetness of sweetnesses" was posted by dogpossum on December 19, 2008 9:58 AM in the category music | Comments (0)

December 18, 2008

theme continues

Be thankful I'm not linking to the cervix pics. Not mine, someone else's.

Well, maybe next time.

"theme continues" was posted by dogpossum on December 18, 2008 3:10 PM in the category clicky | Comments (0)

December 16, 2008

it's nice to know that your cervix is lovely

Yesterday, as we prepared for my pap smear (yes, I am blogging about this - brace yourselves, boys), the doctor asked about my aunt who had cervical cancer: "Did she survive?" I had to think a minute. Yes, she is alive. Survive? Hm. I think that she's a different person, now, and that having cancer (cervical cancer) is something that changes you. So no, I don't think she's the same person she was, so perhaps she didn't survive if by survive you mean 'stayed the same' or 'continued as she was'.

I'm always surprised by how unwilling the women I know are to talk about pap smears. They'll talk about it together, in groups, but with men... not so much. Are men so delicate that they need protecting from the idea that they are not the only ones with access to a woman's cervix? It's not even a particularly urky process. From my end, it's all 'knees up' and then some business at the nerve-ending free part of my insides. I don't see anything (though I guess I could - should I have asked for a mirror?), it's painless (though kind of unusual-feeling), it's quick. Frankly, the syringing of my ears is far more disturbing, what with the rushing of water in my ears, the giant inserting-injecting thing, the dislodged wax, the discoloured water... And we go about with our ears just sitting there on our heads, open and exposed.

I'm also surprised when women haven't heard of the 'fists under hips' technique which helps make the whole process a lot less uncomfortable. A friend told me a few years ago, and it's changed my pap smearing life. Basically, if you tilt your pelvis up (by propping it up, either with your fists under your buttocks, or with a pillow), it's much easier for the doctor to see your cervix. Because, basically, a pap smear involves the doctor having a look deep, deep inside you at your cervix (mine is quite lovely, apparently. I felt a moment of pride for my perfect cervix, there with my fists under my bum, my undies on a chair beside me and a strange woman with a cue-tip saying hello to my ovaries). And when you're that deep inside someone, you need some light so you can see what you're doing, and you really like a nice, clear path to your destination. You want to be able to look the cervix right in the eye before you brush it or swab it or whatever it is you're planning on doing in there.

At any rate, tilting your pelvis up with fists or cushions makes this whole process easier. I was surprised my doctor didn't know the trick, or own one of those special pelvis-tipping cushions. [Speaking (in a brief side point) of pelvis-tipping cushions, did anyone else notice George Clooney's purple velour one in Burn After Reading? Magic. That's a man not only with an eye for ambitious machinery, but also the finer details.] But I made sure she knew just how useful the technique is.

The strangest part of a pap smear is always the thought that there's someone right inside your body. I always think of that when they're examining my ovaries from the inside. It's strange to think that someone's hand is so deep inside you. This is serious business. Part of me always wonders what my ovaries feel like. I mean, I feel them inside me, sometimes, but we're not on a first name basis. And it's not as though I feel I have a gaping hole or emptiness inside me. But suddenly, there's room inside me for someone's hand.
And then, of course, five minutes later you're back in your clothes, on the bus and on your way to the fabric shop. And no one knows from looking at you.

Anyways, I guess the point of this post is to encourage women to get pap smears. And to encourage men not to be afraid of the topic. It's a bit weird and it can be uncomfortable, but it's better than the anxiety of wondering if you have cancer. It's better than not knowing that you're capable of dealing with your body and knowing your body from the inside out (if only via a doctor's flashlight and observation). And there are tricks for making it more comfortable. Not just the pelvis tilting thing.
There are doctors who have mad skills - I always pay them a visit for something minor before I invest in a pap smear with a new doctor. I like to see how they look at me. I choose something that requires physical contact. My ears always need looking in. Sometimes I need my glands checked or my throat peered into. Whatever it is, I pay attention to the way they touch me and the way they talk to me. I like a doctor who's reassuring, who listens, but who's not alarmist and isn't prepared to let me push them around. I like them to take time and to explain things and to make me laugh sometimes.

Not that I need to laugh when I'm having a pap smear, but it's nice to know that someone's paying attention and is gentle and is confident when they're elbow deep in you.

And it's nice to know that your cervix is lovely.

(I think this post was inspired by Stephanie's, mostly because I think her writing about breast cancer is important. I've been thinking about these things lately (because it was this time a few years ago my mother was very, very ill in hospital) and I've been wondering why I can talk about my stupid ears but not my lovely cervix).

"it's nice to know that your cervix is lovely" was posted by dogpossum on December 16, 2008 11:06 AM in the category dogpossum | Comments (2)

December 15, 2008

the telly conference gives good show

I want to watch East West 101.
This is not enough.

I adored Wild Side. This is set in the western suburbs of Sydney (or Melbourne, I forget which).

"the telly conference gives good show" was posted by dogpossum on December 15, 2008 9:31 PM in the category television | Comments (0)

December 14, 2008

look, no hands

I'm copying Alice's work and having a bash at some photoshop tutorials. You MUST go and look at Alice's work - it's freakin' sweet. Mine is a little dodgier:


If you can't see all the image, best to click through to the permalink.

It's not really finished. Basically, it took me hours to get to the point where I had the figure on the textured background. I'm not all that happy with that part - there's not enough texture on the figure (mostly because I gave up on the layering). The text is shitty, but that's because I gave up before I got to the bit in the tutorial about adding layers of 'paper'.

I'm really enjoying it, but I have to follow the instructions _exactly_ because I don't know very much about photoshop at all. I'm just a baby with layers, buggered if I know anything about masks or any of the fancy shit. So, really, I don't actually know anything, I've just been copying. But I'm going to have another go to see if I can actually _learn_ as I go.

I quite like the colours (this whole image is probably the result of too much Deadwood this week), but I _really_ like the colours on Alice's latest effort.

My eyes are kind of square, too.

Ok, here are my sources (and most of them I just found via Alice or the original tutorial):

The basic picture of the woman is from facebook, and it's a picture of Michelle from Sugar Blue Burlesque.
Then I added a hare's head from stock.xchng.
The background paper was also from stock.xchng.
The sunray thing was from
There's a bit of nice wallpaper in there (as in the stuff you put on walls) fromlovelamp.
There're some brushes (now, there's something I'd never used before) from brusheezy.
I think the font is from dafont.

I'm going to have a bash at some more of these photoshop tutorials. I wish I was a bit more visually creative, or that I had something specific to design for. I just couldn't think of anything to write on this one (it's pretty dumb, I know).

I'm also a bit concerned about putting animal heads on women's bodies. Especially on burlesque bodies. There's something weird there. And I'm not entirely comfortable with burlesque as it is - my politics suggest that there's really nothing all that ok about stripping and women dancing erotically for (predominantly) male audiences. I mean, just 'cause it's old timey stripping, don't mean it _isn't_ stripping and _doesn't_ carry all the accompanying problems that stripping carries generally.
... part of me is also thinking about the Dietrich film 'Blonde Venus' and all that feminist film stuff about female bodies as 'pieces' cut up by the male gaze. I also worry about animal headed women not being able to 'return' the male gaze.
But there you go. I dare say my using that picture of a woman I know without permission is also problematic.

I have a couple of ideas for animal headed men, but I think I'm kind of over them. We'll see, though. I think I'd like to go for a more modern look as well - I'm a bit over that dirty look. But it is useful to know how to do it, now.

But what _I'd_ really like to know how to do, is add those 'pieces of paper' with the text on them. I also discovered that I'd forgotten how to do shaped text (as in following a free form line). Sigh.

...and, my foot is still bung. It's about three weeks, now, and I'm only up to 10 minute walks. They make my foot hurt and hurt, though. But yesterday I rode my bike and it didn't hurt my foot. Ace. I still have a bit of a cold from MLX, but I'm absolutely dying of cabin fever and lack of exercise. I MUST do some sort of exercise before I go nuts. I also plan to get into yoga again after christmas. My house-bound-ness has made me very dull, I'm afraid, so nothing more from me. There's more Deadwood to watch. :)

"look, no hands" was posted by dogpossum on December 14, 2008 6:28 PM in the category clicky and crafty bastard and people i know and webbing and yoga | Comments (1)

December 13, 2008

dp and trev make with the DJing

(One of Big Scott's awesome pics)
Big Scott did some nice photos over MLX8. Here's one of a series of Trev and I emoting some DJing scenarios.

"dp and trev make with the DJing" was posted by dogpossum on December 13, 2008 3:53 PM in the category | Comments (0)

December 12, 2008

swingstyrke 7 Right On!

Sw7%202.jpg Danish Goodness continued. This Swingstyrke 7 album was recorded live in 2007 and it's great. Still lots of late Basie, but some other action as well, including a version of 'Doodlin'', a song I'm quite partial to. I've put this in the 'groovy swinging lindy hop' category in my collection, which means that it's not for people who only like old scratchy. But if you like a little hi-fi and a little super groove, then it is for you. I like this stuff for the quality, I like the super laid-back swingingness of it, and I like it that it's super groove, which I think of as high powered groove. It doesn't make you sit down and listen, it makes you get up and dance. As with the other Swingstyrke 7 CD, the songs can be a bit long. This is ok when the tempos are lower, but I'll have to watch it when I'm DJing them for dancers.

This CD is good, but the 70s band gave good moustache. European, tight-jeaned flare-legged moustache. And that's sweet.

"swingstyrke 7 Right On!" was posted by dogpossum on December 12, 2008 5:30 PM in the category digging and djing and lindy hop and other dances and music | Comments (0)

leo mathisen 1941-42 To Be or Not to Be

Leo%204.jpg More crapped on about before, which Scotti and I have a shared love for, and which I heard a couple of different versions of over the MLX8 weekend. I love the Hamp version, but this Leo Mathisen version is pretty spankin' good.

In fact, this whole CD is pretty awesome. He's kind of like a Danish version of Fats Waller. Which is weird, but to which I couldn't possibly object. I also liked the version of 'My Baby Just Cares for Me' which was written in the 20s, but which I had assumed was a modern one. It was made super-famous by Nina Simone.
Those of us who grew up with Rage remember this clip with fondness:


Leo Mathisen doesn't look anything like Nina Simone, and neither of them are anthropomorphised cats. I imagine they also had quite different politics. But this Mathisen CD is a neat contrast to the Swingstyrke 7 one. It's olden days music, it has a chunky base and rhythm, which is just right for dancing phat lindy hop, and it's got that nicely saucy, self-reflexive humour which I adore in my jass.

"leo mathisen 1941-42 To Be or Not to Be" was posted by dogpossum on December 12, 2008 5:12 PM in the category digging and djing and lindy hop and other dances and music | Comments (0)

swingstyrke 7 1978-82 Count's Place

ss7.jpgLast week I emailed the people at Little Beat Records (meaning, Peder at LBR) and bought a heap of CDs (you can see the catalogue here). Then The Squeeze paid a bunch of money into their paypal account. Then Peder sent me the CDs (6 of them). He very kindly gave me free postage (well, I did buy a bunch of CDs) and sent them without the jewel cases, which meant that the whole lot fit into one package. They arrived today. It's been raining for ages, but they were ok (phew).

Little Beat is pretty special. They're a small operation (as in one or two blokes) and they basically get olden days Danish music and make it sound nice. Then they put it on CDs and sell it to nerds like me.

So far I've listened to some Harlem Kiddies and some Swingstyrke 7. It's all really fabulous. The quality is magical. And the musicianship is amazing.

Swingstyrke 7 really rock my boat (I'm in the mood for some of this). Crudely, I'd typify them as a 1950s Basie tribute band recording in the 1970s and 80s. So they were a small band making Basie music. And it's freakin' great. I will _definitely_ be playing this next time I DJ. I thought the Paul Tillotson stuff was pretty good (and they're doing similar things with a smaller band), but these Danish guys are the fushiz.

It has that laid back, hi-fi, in-the-pocket feel of late testament Basie, but also smells like Europe. It's a little chunkier in the rhythm section (which is nice for dancing) and makes me want to get up on my (still, stupidly sore and injured) foot and dance about like a fool. DJing it will just KILL me.

Anyways, I'm only just onto the second CD, so I'll be a while yet. I'll write about the Harlem Kiddies next.

"swingstyrke 7 1978-82 Count's Place" was posted by dogpossum on December 12, 2008 4:33 PM in the category digging and djing and lindy hop and other dances and music | Comments (0)

December 9, 2008


There is awe and majesty left in the world (as found by a number of people and duly poached by me).

[edit: now I think this is an elaborate joke. Evidence? It's just too _good_. The text on the site is too well written and hits too many notes (ie covers all the cheez bases); these doods usually can't write. The site is a bit fancy - it costs a lot and has some badass teknical stuff happening. He's just _too_ much. I think it's a scam by somebody of a reasonable famousness. But we'll see.]

"sigh" was posted by dogpossum on December 9, 2008 7:30 PM in the category clicky | Comments (0)


via the duck.

"awesome" was posted by dogpossum on December 9, 2008 7:01 PM in the category clicky | Comments (0)

exchanges are great

when you're a DJ.

It was really nice to hear some quality DJing from DJs with extensive collections and mad skills. It really makes a difference.

One of the nice parts of the MLX8 weekends was hearing DJs playing from albums/collections I own, but taking songs I'd never have thought to play.

Trev played a neat song from the Chu Berry Mosaic collection (Chasin' Shadows, with Putney Dandridge and his Orchestra) which I'd missed, and now I'm revisiting the collection. It's so very, very good.
I think, if I were to buy just one Mosaic set, that'd be the one. Actually, I'd probably buy that one and the Lionel Hampton one and the Duke Ellington small group one.

But if I could buy any now, I'd get the Kid Ory one and the (early) Louis Jordan one.

"exchanges are great" was posted by dogpossum on December 9, 2008 3:18 PM in the category djing and lindy hop and other dances and music and objects of desire | Comments (0)

December 7, 2008


In the two weeks I was in Melbourne I read three of these young adult books. They're called 'Pretties', 'Ugglies' and 'Specials' and they're by some guy whose last name starts with W. I want to read the last one, 'Extras'. They're not very good, but they're quick reading. I am very into young adult fiction (YA for those of us in The Trade) atm, mostly because of 'Titus Groan'.
Now I am reading this other dumb YA book called 'City of Bones' or 'Bone City' or whatever. It's kind of crap. No Diane Wynn Jones, that's for freakn' sure. Also, finishing off 'Tehanu' the other day (go Ursula Le Guin, go!) has ruined me for anything less. Jeez, that's some good shit. Also, has anyone read the other 'sequels' in the Earthsea series? I think I might.

Basically, this big binge on books (I'm also reading '1984' for the first time) is the product of a trip to that giant second hand book shop in Newtown and some time in Melbourne with Galaxy. She made me buy books (well, I bought the two Buffy season 8 volumes I was missing, but didn't go with the Angel because it was all FREAKING EXPENSIVE. No more Minotaur bookshop for me). I also went to a game shop and bought some more Cheap Ass games (NEED GAME PLAYING FRIENDS! NOW! min. 2 players for my 3-player games). And I bought a broach. And then, because I was obviously ridin' HIGH on the crazy horse, I stopped. But the ride, while it was on, it was so good.

So now I am all about buying books. Usually I wait for The Mother to bring up a shipment or I re-read, but I can't re-read those bastards any more. I can't even count how many times I've read them, but we're over 10. So now I'm buying the buggers.

Also, I am thinking about emusic again.

And, I haven't bought anything for anyone for christmas except my little brother's kids. Because I am crap. But I'm not sure anyone but me wants Chronological Classics CDs, jewelry by local artists, squids of YA fiction (actually, I'm not sure about that one - I think one of my nieces is into books. Because she is into adolescence, almost, and has turned into the nerd of the family. Finally - another nerd is born. She aims to be a chef when she grows up, so I figure that's a win).

Anyways, I hate buying christmas presents. I'd rather make them, but the fabric shop is TOO FUCKING FAR AWAY. It makes me crazy.

And, I have injured my plantar fascia, so I am hobbling around in pain or sitting on my arse watching DVDs (Heroes is less than A1 second time through, but it fills the gap). Or reading YA fiction. Can I just say: YA was better in My Day. Which was about the 70s, apparently, as that's when all the YA books my Ps had were published. Considering I was born in 1974, I guess they were planning ahead. Phew.

Have I mentioned the pain in my foot? Physio has hopes for me and a big dance camp in January, but I'm not so sure. It's a lot of pain. I blame MLX. I can't walk without pain. I can only just walk without a limp. Most days. I do the exercises, though, and I hope. I'm not sure about this getting older thing. It was better when I could just drink drive and get into pakour. Now that I am old, I am reaping the effects of my ill-spent youth. Which, actually, was mostly spent wearing docs and shaving my head. Oh, and going nuts in the university library. With the books. Because, you know, the UQ library had a fair few more books than the Sandgate High library. And you could just _borrow them out for free_!
Anyway, with that and all the disco dancing, I think I damaged myself a bit. The physio reckons fracturing something in my ankle horse riding when I was in my early 20s is responsible for a dodgy ankle today. At the time, I shrugged it off. Today, I suffer. Also, the once-fractured right wrist is also giving me trouble. So this is the lesson: breaking limbs has long term consequences. Which SUCK ARSE.

I am not coping well with the enforced home-stay. I want to go out. Into the world. I hadn't realised just how much walking I do in my day to day life. To the train station, down hill (excruciating on the home trip). To Ashfield for groceries (returning home to empty house, home alone til the weekend, local shops CRAP for veggies, partner working full time so can't go to shops: shitful!). To Marrickville to explore the local fabric shop. To the train station for a 2 part trip to the fabric shop in Green Square. Around Circular Quay, just to look.
Not to mention dancing.
Anyway, if I had a car, I could probably get around. But I'm relying on the bus, and it's not so good. It's just about driving me MAD.

A trip to Burwood yesterday to see a (terrible) film was really hard. I wanted to look in the Burwood shops and eat dumpling. No. Go straight to the cinema. Once I got there, I was in real pain. Then I had to stop off in Ashfield for our veggies. That was ok, but by then I couldn't imagine getting home from the train station in Summer Hill. So I caught a cab. It was so frustrating and painful - ordinarily the 20minute walk to our house from Ashfield would be delight. I'd walk through the park and pick some rosemary. I'd sticky beak in people's gardens. I'd think about things. But yesterday, it was a big piece of crap. Getting a cab felt like a failure.

The physio says riding a bike would be a bit less painful. But I have this stupid left over cold from MLX which is also making me very tired and weak. Which is probably why yesterday was so hard. But I'm also still scared of the traffic.
Fucking hell, this sucks. Injuries: be over! But the physio says we're in for a month of work before I can dance. Which makes me cry. No christmas performance :( No social dancing at three christmas parties. Nothing.

I think I'll buy myself another book. Or perhaps a few million more songs on emusic. I deserve them.

"waaaaaah" was posted by dogpossum on December 7, 2008 4:05 PM in the category bikes and books and domesticity and lindy hop and other dances and melbourne and mood swings | Comments (1)

always last to the bar


Can't believe I missed CW Stoneking in Melbourne. I'm a dummy.
Old timey blues and low-down action. Just my cup of tea. listen here.
Can be bought via itunes (blurgh) or amazon (double blurgh), or via his label Voodoo Rhythm (check their punkrockingly dodgy site) or here.

And he's Australian, no less.
Also, note the musicians in his 'band' - the sorts of jazznicks you know you can love.

"always last to the bar" was posted by dogpossum on December 7, 2008 3:37 PM in the category djing and music and objects of desire | Comments (0)

December 3, 2008

2 dollars isn't such a high price

"2 dollars isn't such a high price" was posted by dogpossum on December 3, 2008 5:39 PM in the category clicky | Comments (0)