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Showing posts from August, 2009

Smells like... hookers.

Consider, if you will, the advert for Yves Saint Laurent’s new men’s fragrance, La Nuit de L'Homme.

As befits a perfume advert, it is filmed in black and white and contains no actual information nor footage of the perfume. A mysterious man, well dressed, descends a staircase in opulent surroundings. Despite having a face that only a mother could love, and even then only if she was drunk and myopic, he turns heads. Young ladies of a groomed but conservative appearance stop dead and paw at him. They are slack-eyed and vacant, like zombies who have forgotten where the brains are. The man looks smug. The end.

There are several obvious interpretations, to whit: this man deals drugs and the vacant-eyed ladies want them; this man has paid these beautiful women large quantities of cash in the past for sex, and they desperately need a new outfit. I’m going with option b – the young women last shopped in the eighties and wear satin polo necks, hair in a bun and pearls. Clearly in need of a ri…

On writing, poultry and stabbing

This writing lark is, quite frankly, not all it is cracked up to be. I am sadly lacking in freezing garret or a beret or any of the various French things ending in “et” I have been told go with the trade.

I have been doing some research on what I can claim on my tax for 2009, being in the rather annoying situation of having outlaid more cash in the last tax year (some) than I earned (none). This means I am unlikely to be able to afford a garret or a beret in the near future, unless I can work out a way to claim deductions for writing that no one is willing to pay for.

The Australian Tax Office is website is not being as helpful as one would expect. For a start, a search for publications on tax for unpaid writers is, ironically, unwritten. The words “freelance”, “writer” or “artiste, dammit” bring up no results. It appears that the Australian tax office only wishes to clarify matters for either that rarest of beasties, the employed writer. That and performance artists, presumably on the…

Redfern - rename or reclaim?

The real estate agent’s property pitch assures me, with the myopically deranged semi-perjurous optimism of someone who only gets paid if they sell this place, that Redfern is the new Surry Hills.

No. No, it’s not.

Redfern is an inner-city suburb of Sydney, just south of the city centre. It’s an inexpensive suburb, with local shops and small family restaurants that sell to people who usually don’t have much money to buy. It’s not full of students on the parents’ payroll. It’s Redfern.

Redfern is also not, as I have seen claimed, the new Newtown or the new Erskineville. It is certainly not Strawberry Hills, despite frequent attempts to shove the boundaries on a map a few small, but extremely profitable, inches over.

It is definitely not East Redfern, which does not have a postcode or appear on ANY maps but frequently does on property ads. Watching someone try to call their home address East Redfern is like watching Keeping Up Appearances’ social snob and secret ex-lowlife Hyacinth Bucket e…