Sunday, 30 May 2010

Health warning
Spotted in a North Perth greengrocer's by my best friend Shelley's French friend, Stephane.

Friday, 28 May 2010

The hots for pink
I was watching Nigella cook something the other night, and in the background I caught a glimpse of a hot pink sofa against a white wall.
And ever since, whenever I'm designing rooms in my imagination, or in that dreamy state twixt waking and sleeping, I cannot help but dream in hot pink.
Not your marshmallow pastel, but the shocking, h-o-t stuff.
All these fabulous images, from various sumptuous magazines, are from one of my newly discovered and seriously treasured blogs, An Indian Summer, which is the most perfect eye candy if you're into hot interiors from hot countries.
And, interestingly, now that I am au naturel of hair (an end to 20 years of colouring), I do believe I could even wear this colour. In small doses. Though that may be a slower journey of discovery ...
Onya, Lee!
The dear boy won it!
Just a few months ago, he was a clerk in a paint store in the suburbs of Chicago.
Last night he was on stage with Joe Cocker (and a heap of startling old has-beens who didn't do half as well as our Joe, but we won't go there - though we will just say that it made a mockery of the judges' constant advice to the contestants to 'be contemporary' and 'try to avoid sounding like someone singing karaoke in a seedy cabaret').
Just seconds before Ryan announced the winner, Lee went red and doubled over, and we thought he was going to throw up! Same straight after the announcement (pictured above) - the teary-eyed, disbelieving stunned mullet!
I have been a complete sucker for this show.
The thought that I could watch it when I got home late on Wednesday nights jokingly sustained me through a few hours of laying out the paper: I knew David, my trusty old Jason recliner and a hot cup of tea would be at home waiting for me. And there could be no more perfect program to unwind to after work so I could actually get to sleep on Wednesday nights!
Now it's all done. Oh well - telly will provide!

Thursday, 27 May 2010

It's been chucking it down all day - wonderful.
I finished my stint as arts writer at the paper today, though I'll need to go in to work tomorrow just to tidy up the desk, ditch all the dead emails, tag all the good ones, write up a couple of stories I have still in note form and generally have things sorted for when my colleague returns.
:: I made a quilt last weekend, for a baby of one of Lily's old school friends.
:: Off to see Waiting for Godot tomorrow night. And I'm excited to see that the movie of The G with the DT is on for a return season at a local cinema, so I'll have to see that. Going to the movies on Sunday with my best friend Shelley, to see Mother and Child.
:: Right now I'm in my tracky-daks, getting ready for the final countdown on American Idol. We had the grand finale last night and my favourite, Lee, with the sparkly eyes, didn't do so well as Crystal, the lovely, dreadlocked indie singer with the superb voice. I think she'll win.
Have a great weekend!

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Booky stuff
I'm light years behind the rest of the world when it comes to Stieg Larsson's The Millennium Series (I just started book two, The Girl Who Played with Fire).
How wonderful it is to come across a book that you just can't put down — that you really consider taking to work in case there are a few moments to read a few lines during the day — that you notice on the bedside table and simply long for the other events of the day to pass quickly so you can go to bed early and get back into it!
Between volumes one and two, I read Brooklyn, by Colm Toibin, which is the book we'll be talking about when The Shipping News Book Club meets next.
Luckily, it was similarly engrossing, simply and beautifully told, all the more poignant for its subtlety. Fantastic — lots to talk about with the club.
Now I'm starting The Girl Who Played with Fire, and am encouraged to see the blurb says it's even better than the first one, which is just what the young lad in the bookshop said. Yee-ha!
Anyway, click here to read an intriguing NY Time article about poor old Stieg and his legacy.
Must say, I'm with the Poms on the third book title's apostrophe ...
And have you ever though, ever ever, that Ikea represents a "design-loving Socialist paradise"? Socialism (just like we have here in evil old Australia, with our nationalised health-care system) is a terrifying, sickening, noir concept to America ... you gotta love 'em! Or feel sorry for 'em ...

Friday, 21 May 2010

Binding finished during a few nail-biting Docker games.
Now on to the next ...

Thursday, 20 May 2010

The drive to work
Getting to work in the morning takes me about eight tracks of Katie Noonan's wonderful, brilliant new album.
(I interviewed her yesterday and she was lovely.)
Everything looks good in the low gold of winter sunshine (look beyond the dirty cars waiting for a good night's rain).
Whatever the time I leave home, I always get stuck at these traffic lights, corner of Loftus and Vincent. There's a lovely median-strip garden, though, and these old peppermints and grass-trees love this light.
There's a whiz through Leederville and under the freeway, and then (below) one of my favourite rows of little old houses in West Leederville, opposite Subiaco Oval on Railway Road.
I'm in Subi here, with the entrance to Subi Oval, The Home of Football, on my left at this intersection (below). But I love the old house on the opposite corner. For years and years it was wasting away into a ruinous mess, but it looks as though someone's restoring it at last.
A lot of really old Subi houses have pairs of these huge old palm trees in the front gardens. Apparently, it was something of a tradition, around the turn of the last century, for a husband and wife to plant a tree each when they moved into their first house together. They're called wedding palms.
Today, I took a pic every time I stopped at a red light.
This next one is the corner of Townshend Road and Hay Street. See that low concrete wall on other side of the car on the left?
It's a building site, but just a few weeks ago, a big old Victorian two-storey house stood here, which was one of Subi's best-known shared hippy-student houses in the early 1970s.
I lived there with Simon's dad in the summer of '73-'74, at the end of my second year at uni, before I set off for a year's hitch-hiking through Europe.
It's sad to see the old house has gone.
Subi is just minutes from the University of Western Australia, and in the '70s it was a poor, run-down, grotty suburb full of fantastic student houses that we'd rent for $9 a week after the landlord dealt with the fleas.
You can't buy here for less than $1 million today. Students have left!
This next pic is of a row of shops on Hay Street in Subiaco. I have a few pics of these buildings - I always imagine I'll work them into a painting or a drawing one day. Or I'll get Will to get out the Big Black Nikon and get me a really good shot.
Some mornings I leave what in the US we'd call the "surface roads" and take the freeway.
This takes me quickly through the city and then on to the road between King's Park and the river, which is even more beautiful in the morning light.
Might show yo that another day!
Have a great weekend. Go Dockers. See you soon.

Friday, 14 May 2010

My gorgeous hairdresser and best friend Maggie is going to swap with me.
She is going to give me free haircuts, and I ... wait for it ... will paint a mural in her salon.
I am so excited I can hardly think straight.
I love to paint B-I-G, and I have a few ideas in my mental file and my visual diaries, just waiting for the right wall!
And I love what Nathalie Lete does in this little Tokyo shop — thank you Shelley, for this link.
If any of you have any other ideas, any links to mural gorgeousness or pics, please let me know!

Thursday, 13 May 2010

At school
My grandson, in Year 1, got his first ever merit award at school assembly on Tuesday, for building a marshmallow tower.
His sister, wrapped up snuggly warm in nanna's quilt, was ecstatic!

:: I'm not nearly so comatose-exhausted after this week's paper — I must be building up some stamina.
David and I are off, very soon, to see Wil Anderson's stand-up comedy show. Seeya later.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Don't have much time or eyesight to do a lot in my lovely room at the mo.
The DLBs are all quietly slumbering on the bookshelf and waiting for faces.
So, too, is the doll; though truth be told, in a sort of perverse existentialist affectation, she actually revels in the identity-lessness.
Diabolical bunny (above) is still in limbo while we try to decide if a bit of trans-species surgery (ie, cutting his long bunny ears to short round ones) would meet his inner need to be a bear and help him with his issues.
Granny rug is assuming that one day she will be bigger than a hand-towel so she can be truly useful and keep something warm.
The papercuts are filed in the flat and the dark, where the cow is perpetually jumping over the moon and wants to complain but can't because I haven't cut up to her yet.
So while I've been working at the paper, I've turned my back on all these loud, needy creatures and got on with a quilt. Peace and quiet.
It's a whole-cloth cot quilt. Very manageable size. No piecing or fiddling required. Just occasional mindless sewing up and down with the walking foot on the mighty Bernina.
The top is a Japanese Kokka cotton in bright cheery stripes, the other side a fabulous polka-dot cotton in a goes-with-anything ochre-yellow that I found for two bucks a metre in Albany's brand-new and huge Spotto store.
I'm sewing on the binding while I watch the footy on the telly (you bewdy, Dockers!)
I couldn't find anywhere on the interwebs that would make me the sort of sew-in labels I was looking for, so I've sewn my own.
:: David came home on Friday, a day early, and all is again right with the world. I'm cooking a big bold chicken curry in the slow-cooker to take to David's mum's for dinner tonight, and shortly all my kids will descend on me to make me lunch.
Happy day to all you mothers.
Love from me

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Let's all do one of these!

Rob Ryan timelapse at Pick Me Up gallery from karl sadler on Vimeo.

I found this over on the All Things Considered blog, from St Jude's gallery in Norfolk, England — my home county. They reckon each second of this video represents about 20 minutes of cutting.

The film was made in Somerset House in London, where Rob Ryan has moved everything from his studio and installed it, with himself and his assistants, as an exhibit. Visitors can not only see Rob at work and talk to him, but join in various projects.

I would so enjoy that!

:: Just finished my working week. My Dave is away until Saturday, so I'm having to cook my own dinner and get my own cuppa in the morning. Now that is a shock to the system, I can tell you.

Though this morning, David did ring me at 6.30am to make sure I was awake in time to get to work!

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Still here
Even if I'm not posting often at all.
I am having a brilliant time with the arts.
I have talked to artists, visited them in their studios, interviewed actors, and been invited to all sorts of shows and openings.
It's finally cold here at nights, so with this extra tiredness from working all day, I'm sleeping like a log. Whenever the temperature falls below 10 C (50 F), I sleep incredibly soundly, with hardly a disturbance all night. And I've finally broken in a fabulous, luxurious, deep down pillow that makes me go mmmmmmm .... Ooh, bed is so good!
And my Dave is looking after me so well, with dinner ready every night. I'm a lucky doer.
I go to bed early with The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I'm a late starter, and I know many of you will have read this already — so I am curious: how are the other two books in the Millennium series? Do tell me if you've read them.
Don't forget Mothers' Day on Sunday ...