VOL. 80 ISSUE 12
featured contribs / class of 2012 mail wild horse the president(s) vox pop the rainbow room special feature: the decades post-emo alan jones how to: direct action political labels photo essay: duisburg india creative past the veil break/remnants daphne choose your own adventure stuff you like columns diversions goodbye / next year has new editors science
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Editors: Galen Cuthbertson, Seb Tonkin & Emma Jones. Cover Artwork by Anthony Nocera. Inside front cover by Madeleine Karutz. Inside back cover by George Stamatescu and Orlando Mee. On Dit is a publication of the Adelaide University Union. Published 8/10/2012.
BYE, GUYS! seb says: Last weekend, at the National Young Writers Festival, Ben Jenkins was hosting a public game of ‘Would You Rather’. He would present two absurd options, and people like Benjamin Law and Christian Lander would pick between them. This was one of those options: ‘You have to take care of ten dogs, and if one dog dies, four more appear to take its place.’ Editing a magazine can sometimes feel a little bit like that. When it’s 3am, and you’re hacking desperately at a piece you should have laid out hours ago, it can seem like new dogs appear everywhere you turn. They clamber in through our basement windows. The lights flicker out, buzz back on, and there are a few more hungry eyes peering up from our faithful couch. But despite the occasional metaphorical canine explosion, it’s been a good year. We’ve worked with old veterans, welcomed nervous newbies, and seen writers we published venture out to wider, better paid, twee-er pastures. There have been times when I’ve gotten to read and refine and modify the typographical tracking of things that I almost felt unworthy to touch. At our best moments, we’ve felt that particular editorial satisfaction – quietly proud of our product, but suspecting that, in the end, we didn’t really do anything anyway. I’m proud of Emma and Galen, who have been the best possible people to not really do anything anyway with I could have hoped for. I’m proud of every single person who has helped us out, and I’m
proud that the list of us (overleaf) is longer than last year’s. I hope that next year it’s longer still. I’m proud that, together, we’ve produced a longer magazine more frequently than some of our interstate companions. I’m proud we did it with fewer people, and much, much less money. I’m proud that almost every single copy we printed got picked up, and that at least a few of them were read. I’m proud of our frantic, blurry, crowded office dance parties. I’m proud that after 80 years of facing shadowy enemies on all sides, On Dit stubbornly continues to exist. I look forward to reading it for a long time to come. Love, Seb
emma says: Sometime in Semester 1, Galen ordered 1000 soy sauce fish online so we could throw them in cups for points when we got bored. They’re fucking everywhere. Every time I eat sushi for the rest of my life I’m going to squirt soy sauce on my tempura and think of the On Dit basement. Think of sitting in it at 2am, eating cold pizza, waiting on a draft from a contributor who ‘forgot’ the deadline (you know who you are). Of the weird YouTube videos and tequila shots and impromptu dance parties and big ideas and the writers and artists who have turned into dear friends. Of the collection of dead mosquitoes I squashed onto the wall next to my desk with a packet of Berocca because I already have 400 bites on my ankle and could they just fuck off please and stop biting me. Of course, I’ll think of my co-editors, too. Lumberjack chic on the right and conspiracy theorist on the left. Two of my favourite people going. If I keep writing in this vein I’ll probably start crying and they’ll think I’m weird, but srsly you guys are like sloths to me. I don’t know how to compete with all of this emotion. I’m an 11 on the scale. Let’s move on. In the past two years, editorship of On Dit has been contested in elections for the first time since 2006. We’re handing over next year to the editors you voted for, which (let’s be honest) is way
better than us barricading ourselves into a mosquitoridden basement for more late nights with Adobe. Competition and constant change are healthy and necessary to keep this magazine at its best. You guys have shown that you’ve engaged with the magazine. You want to listen, and you want to be heard. I would encourage you, with your new editors in 2013, to keep this up. There is nobody more important to On Dit and its readership than YOU. Start a conversation. On Dit exists to give you a voice. Use it. Thanks for a great year you guys. Catch y’all on the flip. Love, Emma
galen says: Almost two years ago, I was scuffing my boots on the pavement of Victoria Drive. I was seventeen, painfully sober, trying to summon the courage to walk into my first ever On Dit party. It was bitter-cold out, my jumper was thin, and I stood there for at least twenty minutes, waiting for courage to come. It didn’t. I went in anyway. I’ve spent a lot of this year wracked by fear, waiting for courage to come. And I know this sounds strange, but not in a bad way. I’ve feared sucking. I’ve been
Photo: Max Denton, Farrago Magazine
terrified that we might let one of our many (fucking amazing) contributors down. I’ve been scared we would print a magazine that it turned out nobody wanted to read. We didn’t, I don’t think. But I was scared anyway. The thing is, looking back, it worked out. Fifty-two pages every two weeks, filled with some of the best art and writing this University has to offer. Like Seb said, we didn’t really do anything. We were scared, intimidated, unsure of ourselves and our jobs, but we did it. Maybe that’s the take-away lesson: being scared doesn’t matter. You can still make cool shit. You can still help other people make cool shit. If you keep running, keep working, keep making good art … it works out. Seb, Emma, I love you guys. You two, this year, this damned magazine: it’s been a shit-tonne of fun. When I’m old, in my garden, drinking my tea and cursing my weeds, I’ll remember you two, the mead, and the fear. I mean, fuck, you were my first tequila. We did good, I think. Did well, at least. We had fun. Oh, and thanks. You’re all beautiful. All of you. Readers, writers, illustrators and all. It’s been swell. Love, Galen
FEATURED CONTRIBUTORS Nicola Dowland
When I was six my family went on a remarkable vacation around Europe, where we explored ancient Roman ruins in England and museums in France, Germany and Italy. It’s no coincidence that I’m currently undertaking a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Classics. My other passions are literature and science fiction. I love writing, and am a storyteller at heart.
Anthony is a first year Law/ Arts (English) student who does not photograph well. He enjoys being critical, food, union jacks and Tina Fey. When he’s not eating or re-watching episodes of Arrested Development, Anthony is writing, browsing on ASOS or thinking about eating. In the future he aspires to be Tina Fey’s wife, but will settle for being married to Anne Hathaway, Kristen Wiig or Emma Stone.
Bec McEwen likes manga, metal and cold winter mornings. She firmly believes that there is no such thing as too much tea. She likes writing in cafes, airports and other crowded places. Her house is full of books. She looks forward to finishing her Law degree and embarking on a career which has nothing whatsoever to do with Law.
(daphne, p 38)
(front and back cover art)
(past the veil, p 34)
(on dit mascot, 2012) Tilly is in her third year of a Bachelor of Meowdicine, majoring in Naps. She doesn’t have much spare time, but when she does, she spends it doing catnip shots at the UniBar and sitting in the window. She enjoys destroying rolls of toilet paper, eating leaves, exploring small spaces, tummy rubs and collecting straws. Her pet hates include visitors and Dave Hughes.
CLASS OF 2012 The On Dit editors would like to thank the following contributors and friends for all their help and hard work with Volume 80.
Adelaide Law Student Dr Parchili Aepudan, PhD Tim Aldridge Oshadha Aluthwala Rosanna Anderson Michelle Bagster The Hon. John Bannon, AO Jack Batty Gemma Beale Erin Bernhardt Alice Bitmead Tamieka Black Casey Briggs Sophie Byrne Nathan Cole Fiona Coles Max Cooper Alison Coppe Annabel Crabb Stella Crawford Ben Crisp Sam Crisp Philip Curran Cat Davies CJ Dennis Nicola Dowland John Eldridge Koby Fittock Elizabeth Flux Clementine Ford Emma Forrest Stuart Gatz Julia Gillard Emma Gray-Starcevic Raelke Grimmer Jodie Guidolin George T. Horseprotector Aidan Jones
Rory Kennet-Lister Gemma Killen Adam Kreminski Sam Lane Georgie Lawrence-Doyle Bryn Lewis Samuel Lymn Thomas A. Mackay Stan Mahoney Tom Major Walter Marsh Idris Martin Katherine Matthews Justin McArthur Rebecca McEwen Shaun Micallef Nijole Naujokas Ben Nielsen Ruby Niemann Anthony Nocera Genevieve Novak Fletcher O’Leary Joel Parsons Sheldon Patterson Samantha Prendergast Rhia Rainbow Ben Reichstein Emily Renner Holly Ritson Claire Miranda Roberts Rowan Roff Rowan Saunders Ryan Schultz Kate Secombe Tom Sheldrick Amy Sincock George Stamatescu Catherine Story Natasha Stott-Despoja
Sarah Swan Deanna Taylor Charlotte Thomas Michael Thomas Naomi Traeger Lauren Varo Annabel Waters Alex Wheaton Matilde Wiese Tamara Williams Nick Xenophon Samantha Yeaman Zara Zampaglione Benjamin Zubreckyj
Photographers Susan Allin Chris Arblaster Andrew Burley Sarah Carr Sia Duff Billy Horn Matayo Moshi Rachel Mundy Lisa Norwood Sam Oster Ellie Parnell Nic Peterkin Horng Yih Wong Sam Young
Molly Ayers-Lawler Gina Chadderton Rohan Cheong Samantha Decena Irene Easton Kyra Evanochko Daisy Freeburn Katie Hamilton
Darcy Holmes Madeleine Karutz Lillian Katsapis Stephen Lang Jessica Łowczak Chloe McGregor Orlando Mee Ann Nguyen-Hoang Vela Noble Anthony Nocera Saskia Scott Alex Smith Mike Stanford Alexandra Stjepovic Louise Vojvodic Alexandra Weiland
Angus Dickson Sam Deere Robert Downey Jr Amy Elizabeth Courtney Fried Connor O’Brien Sujini Ramamurthy Myriam Robin Mateo Szlapek-Sewillo Seal Steph Walker
And, of course, the manufacturers — for a good and instructive day.
CORRESPONDENCE Dear Editors,
When most people meet me for the first time, they don’t realise that I’m a Muslim. I dress conservatively, 6 but not in a way that distinguishes me as being a (cheekbones)Muslim. I have an Australian accent, and I sound educated and articulate (well, most of the time anyway). I might look Middle Eastern, but I could just as easily be Southern Italian, Indian, or South American. They don’t ask me about my faith, I don’t raise it, and they walk away not thinking about it. PAGE
If the topic of faith or religion happens to come up eventually though, and I reveal that I am a Muslim, the reaction can be highly amusing. More often than not, it begins with a reaction of mild surprise. This is sometimes followed by my new friend or acquaintance (unwittingly) trying to rationalise this new piece of information by saying something like, ‘oh yeah, but you’re a modern Muslim, you’re not that strict, you’re more lenient with your faith, you’re different.’ Whilst comments like these are well-intentioned, they show that there is still a fear of Islam lying around campus. The implication here is that the less religious you are, the more acceptable you are to Australian society. It’s as if I am being told, ‘We have nothing against Muslims. We just don’t like the devout ones.’ What disturbs me about these reactions, is that it seems no matter how ‘good’ some Muslims try to be, they will never be able to get rid of the stereotypes surrounding our faith. When we appear to be genuinely nice people, we are brushed aside as being unauthentic Muslims, or not in keeping with mainstream Islam. For my acquaintance, the stereotype stands, but this particular Muslim is an exception to the rule.
B D G
O H Y
D Y E
O D O G
O Y D E G H O O
Sandra Elhelw Dear Editors, I was delighted to find that you published my letter in On Dit 80.11, and to see that you have begun to explore the world of possibilities around you. I appreciated the interview with Fredrick Toben, the Holocaust denier, not because I agree with him, but because it shows that you are prepared to consider ideas not fed to you by the mainstream press. This leads me to hope that none of the Lizard People have infiltrated your offices yet. I was disappointed, however, that Naomi Traeger did not research slightly further, as with little effort she may have been able to discover that the true cause of the Holocaust was far more insipid than even popular history suggests. A little exploration would have shown that there is some evidence to suggest that prominent members of the Nazi party (as well as leading figures in the German and Polish Jewish community) may have been lizard people. They orchestrated an attack to unite the world under a certain group of pre-selected leaders, so that they may continue to tightly control all aspects of international politics and commerce. Always look for the broader agenda, comrades Annie
word: oh, goodbye!
(see diversions on pg. 44)
On Dit absolutely refuses to apologise.
What I would have preferred from my acquaintance is that they used meeting this new ‘normal’ Muslim as an opportunity to reassess their current assumptions about Muslims, rather than dismissing it as an exceptional occurrence.
Bursting to opine on something that’s in the magazine (or should be)? Sure, we can’t print any more of them this year, but On Dit still accepts your emails at email@example.com. Or get all social-media on our facebook page: facebook.com/onditmagazine.
YOU SAY POTATO; WE SAY “POTAUU!!!” Photo: Chris Arblaster
honours program and undergraduate student printing, we’ve introduced new training programs to give students skills to find part time work, and a medical grants scheme for students that can’t afford to go to the doctor. On December 1, a new bunch of wide-eyed, bushytailed new students will take office and continue the never-ending job of representing you to the University. I can already predict some of the issues they’ll be facing - some things are perennial student issues. Issues like student printing, online lecture recordings, the cost and quality of student housing won’t be going away anytime soon. There’s one thing that will help them monumentally, and would’ve helped me too, and that revolves around you getting engaged. A lot of the issues that your representatives handle affect you directly, and they range from small (whether the student centre opens at 9 or 9:30am) to large (whether the degree you’re studying continues to exist). It’s hard for us to act in your best interests if we don’t know what you want. So get involved! If you see a survey, if we ask you a question on Facebook, or if something happens that you just feel the need to whinge about, please give us your feedback!
with CASEY BRIGGS, auu president. This column is going to contain a healthy portion of self-indulgence. Sorry team. This is my last column as President of the AUU, and as I write this I’m gradually coming to the end of my term. For me it’s been an incredibly busy, exciting, and often stressful year. It’s been a privilege to work on behalf of all the students at the University to improve your student services. Of course, I haven’t paid as much attention to my thesis as my supervisors would like (I’ll make it up next year, I promise). I am constantly being told by observers that the AUU and SRC ‘don’t really do anything,’ and only exist so that student politicians can act out fantasies of being in parliament. The reality is far from this. It’s not untrue that many are involved in political parties, or have an ambition to enter politics later in life, but almost all of them have the right intention as student representatives. This year, we’ve had an impact on the future of the
So that’s all from me. I’m not disappearing off the face of the earth just yet, but after an intense year like this giving my blood, sweat and tears to the AUU and students, I’ll definitely be taking more of a back seat in 2013. Thankyou to all the students that have approached me with issues, feedback or just for a chat. You’ve made the year worthwhile. Good luck with your exams and final assessment if you have them, and I’ll see you about the place. Casey Briggs POTAUU (President Of The Adelaide University Union), T-shirt Wearer, Oppressor of Millions, Despoiler of Fallow Land, Feared Brig(g)and and Freebooter, Nipple Photographer, Future On Dit Editor, Victim of Editorial Perogative, etc. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter: @CaseyBriggs
STUDENT REPRESENTATIVE COLUMN Photo: Shaylee Leach
your campus SRC, except on a national level and with a lot more money than us. NUS has a series of Office Bearers, including a President, General Secretary and so on, and a branch in each state and territory except the Northern Territory.
with IDRIS MARTIN, src president. Recently, the SRC organized a student response to the placement of faeces in the George Duncan Room, commonly known as the Rainbow Room. Students at this university made their position clear on homophobia clear to both the university community and the wider community. I would like to thank everyone who attended, as well as the university, for their support for the response action. Now, during the most recent election (the one I read a number of complaints about in the last edition of On Dit - sorry guys, democracy), you would have voted for people to fill the positions of National Union of Students (NUS) Delegates. A large proportion of you have no idea what that means, so allow me to explain if only because the SRC is about due to pay its affiliation fee to NUS soon. So, the National Union of Students is the peak representational body for university students in Australia. In some ways, think of it as kind of mirroring
NUS is responsible for lobbying federal bodies, including the federal government, for the interests of students as well as running national campaigns to raise awareness on student issues. They also provide invaluable support to individual campus student organisations in tackling campus specific issues. The kinds of issues they focus on are youth allowance, student housing, base funding reform and the list goes on. Weâ€™re talking about massive, federal tertiary education issues that individual student organisations cannot tackle alone, so we do it through the National Union of Students. So what do the seven NUS Delegates from the University of Adelaide that you elected do? They attend the NUS National Conference. National Conference is one of the most important parts of NUS. At National Conference, each affiliated student organisation sends a number of delegates depending on how many equivalent full time student loads (EFTSL) there are at their respective university, to a maximum of 7 delegates. When all of these student representatives from across the country meet up in Victoria for this conference, they spend the few days they have debating and voting on policy. Policy at National Conference takes the form of binding motions, which provide direction to the State, and National Office Bearers around the kinds of campaigns and issues we want them to focus on. What also occurs is the ballot for the various national Office Bearer positions. As you can see, our delegates have the capacity to really influence the direction of the National Union. If there is anything in particular you want them to focus on, get in contact with me and Iâ€™ll put you in touch with them. Otherwise, as always, any questions, queries or complaints, feel free to send me an email. Idris Martin President, Student Representative Council Email: email@example.com Twitter: @IdrisMartin
Anna, Medicine 1st year
Tom, Arts 2nd year
Mitch, Mechanical Engineering 1st year
Jurassic Park, as long as the dinosaurs don’t eat me. 2. Yes. I think so. Well, evidently, going by what happened. 3. Well, I wore a skirt and rode my bike to uni. That was a mistake. 4. Oh really, I didn’t know that. I wouldn’t, but I did revisit my profile, it was very embarrassing. 5. I don’t know the decade, but Jane Austen’s era. I’m obsessed with her books and Mr Darcy, but I guess women didn’t have as much power. It’d be nice not to have to worry about a career and just find a husband. 6. Best year of my life.
Jurassic Park! Velociraptors, man. 2. Definitely. A person is smart, and people are dumb. 3. I didn’t do my homework. Does that count? 4. Totally, yeah with Justin Timberlake it would be a much cooler place. 5. The 80s, because I just missed out by a year. And everyone was wearing fluoro all the time. 6. Not the end of the...
Jurassic Park. Dinosaurs. So long as it’s the first half of the movie, and they stay behind the fence. 2. I’m not really sure. Vandalism happens lots of places, so I’m not sure what the difference is. 3. I forgot to buy milk. I ate cereal without milk. Have you ever had cereal with water instead of milk? That’s a last resort. 4. I completely missed that stuff – Myspace and Pokemon. I had a childhood sometime in those years. I don’t know what happened. I guess Justin Timberlake is a good dancer. 5. The 60s sounded pretty cool... good music. 6. Drunk at the uni bar.
In which On Dit distracts six students to ask the following questions... 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.
Would you rather be the World’s Best Parent, or go to the real Jurassic Park? Given the recent vandalism of the Rainbow Room, do you think homophobia is still a problem today? Have you made any regrettable decisions today? Did you ever have Myspace? Would you go back to it now that Justin Timberlake owns it? What decade would like to have lived in other than now, and why? Describe the year 2012 in 5 words.
Kelly, Advanced Arts 1st year
Mick, Aerospace Engineering 2nd year
Morgan and Hannah Media/Arts 1st year
World’s best parent, because my parents were awesome and I’m really grateful for that. 2. I think it is, and that’s terrible what happened. I’ll definitely be at the rally. 3. Not really. I’ve had a good day. 4. Wow. I didn’t know that. No, it’s a waste of time. I don’t even have Facebook. 5. The 60s. The music was awesome and people started standing up for stuff, there was a real public opinion. 6. First year uni is awesome.
The real Jurassic Park. I liked dinosaurs as a kid. 2. Not for myself, but for some people. I say each to their own. 3. Coming to uni. Assignments, getting ready for exams... it’s not the most enjoyable part of the year. 4. Oh, I might log in if it changes, but Facebook’s enough for the moment. 5. Being a teenager in the 90s would be great. So much of the music I like was popular then, I’m a big fan of Daft Punk. 6. December 31st could be interesting.
If you took your kid to Jurassic Park, wouldn’t you be the best parent anyway? 2. If someone’s homophobic, it’s not really socially acceptable. I guess those people internalise their homophobia because it’s not accepted. 3. Went for a jog this morning. It killed me. 4. Does he? I’d have to see some evidence. I still have mine. I know people who are trying to bring it back, so I say go for it. 5. The 20s. I’d like to have been a higher-class 20s lady, it wouldn’t have been much fun if you were in the lower socioeconomic class. For the fashion, and the sense of rebellion. 6. The death of social etiquette. (I hate when people look at their phones when you’re talking to them.)
photos: seb tonkin and matayo moshi On level six of Union House (by the old Rumours café) sits the George Duncan room. Affectionately known as the Rainbow Room, the space is intended, SRC President Idris Martin says, as an ‘autonomous, safe space on campus for queer students’. The room was named in memory of George Duncan, the academic who, forty years ago, was drowned in the River Torrens for being a gay man. On the first Tuesday following the mid-semester break, faeces were found in the room’s microwave. As we go to print, University security are still investigating
the incident, but reportedly don’t believe the perpetrator to be a student or staff member of the University. The SRC was immediate in condemning the act as ‘hateful and homophobic’, and while others questioned the (let’s face it, probably unknowable) actual motive for the vandalism, others felt such discussion missed the point. AUU President Casey Briggs told On Dit that ‘an already marginalised group of students felt that they were being threatened as a result of their autonomous space being violated, regardless of what the intentions of the culprit were.’ On Friday, the SRC held a
short-notice rally against campus homophobia, and about 150 students gathered to show their support, signing pledges. Speakers included, besides student representatives, Tammy Franks, Greens MLC, who offered her support: ‘This incident was done by somebody secretly, quietly, and it has been responded to publicly and proudly.’ Idris Martin asks, ‘If queer students cannot feel safe in this small area, how can they be expected to feel safe on the wider campus?’ Certainly, the support shown here should help. ◊
THE DECADES PAGE
eight writers look back on the last eight decades
by samantha prendergast.
The On Dit eds sent an email asking if we’d write some words about a decade and when I saw they’d assigned me the ‘30s I thought: cool! I know about the ‘30s! And then I realised that actually, no I don’t. I know about the New Deal and Stalin and the Federal Writers Project. Those things are all ‘30s-relevant but there’s probably more to the decade than American policy and the USSR.
So I googled ‘Australia 1930s’. My first thoughts were: fuck off Great Depression, it’s not all about you. Scroll scroll more Depression, ‘inter-war years’, something about the Ashes, and some really boring shit about Sir Earle Page (don’t look him up, it’s not worth it). Not a single win until I clicked on a Kraft Foods link that promised a list of ‘30s Australian food. The link lied and I ended up watching a distinctly 2010s risotto slide show and eating a toastie. Seems like failure, but it made me wonder what ‘30s people were eating between all the Depression-timebitching. Turns out they ate a lot of the same stuff we do and not much of it is Australia-specific. So I got all UK-US-central and compiled a list of neat ‘30s food facts from all over the privileged Anglo world. SOME FOODS THAT
WERE INTRODUCED OR INVENTED OR GOT BIG IN THE ‘30S: Corn chips (1932) In Australia, the Sydney Opera House was completed; in America, some dude invented corn chips. It probably wasn’t the first time someone fried a tortilla but it was the first time someone packaged them into bags and sold them en masse. Canned drinks (Mid-‘30s/debatable) These weren’t cans as we know them, and canned drinks didn’t become proper popular until the 70s. Still, this was the first time you could drink beer/coke/ginger ale from something other than a bottle or a glass. They had names like ‘cone top’ and ‘crowntainer’ and were known to sometimes leak or make the drink taste like metal or wax. ‘Rowntree’s Chocolate Crisps’(1935) Before Kit Kat’s were Kit Kat’s they were Rowntree’s Chocolate Crisps. Contrary to a couple of lying American websites, Kit Kat’s were initially an English thing. They flew to America in 1937 and the fourfingered-chocolate-wafer snack basically hasn’t changed since.
‘Parwill’ (1928-1935) No idea what this is? Clue: ‘Marmite but Parwill’ (actual slogan). Parwill was a temporary name for Vegemite, used from 1928-1935 to market the only-vaguely-differentfrom-Marmite product which hadn’t really been selling. The Parwill thing failed and market success didn’t come until post-1935, when coupons for Vegemite were given out free with Kraft cheese products. Frozen food (1929 and beyond) So this is kind of a lie in that: food was sometimes frozen before the ‘30s. But during the ‘30s, the people at Birdseye (most notably, Clarence Birdseye) made frozen food mainstream. Frozen peas started appearing in supermarkets (also new) and though I cannot not possibly say because I am not a time-traveler or long-distance mind-reader, people were suddenly aware that the future had arrived. The Flex-Seal Speed Cooker (1939) I hadn’t heard of pressure cookers until I watched Masterchef but the things have been around for domestic use since 1939. This is not a food; I was just surprised. Sorry.
by genevieve novak.
‘I’ve made a huge mistake,’ he said, and watched the ice in his drink slosh side to side.
some steam.’ ‘So you invaded Poland?’ ‘May I have another drink, please? You’re being cheap with the whisky.’
‘What do you mean?’ I asked, refilling my own.
‘Sure. But where did all this antiSemitism come from then?’
‘I just feel like this whole war situation is getting out of hand,’ he said, ‘It started out innocently enough.’ ‘World War II started out innocently enough?’ ‘Well. Goebbels likes this bar down the street with two-for-one margaritas, and we’d just got paid, and things just spiralled. Eva was all up on my dick like, “why are you never home?”, “stop having sex with your niece”, “your moustache is not cute”—I just needed to blow off
‘Oh, that wasn’t my idea. Look at me—I’m not exactly an Aryan prince. It was Goebbels again. Peer pressure! Didn’t you ever go to middle school? It doesn’t end there. Politicians can be so cruel.’ ‘You should probably stop the war then, and stop killing Jews and Poles and gays and stuff, if you feel like it’s gone too far. I think it has too.’ ‘If I call it all off now, I could probably restore my reputation.
Do you think I’d be re-elected? I’m pretty good with the economy and giving people jobs.’ ‘Look, I mean. It’s not like you’re the first guy on earth to be into blue- PAGE eyed blondes, but I don’t think you’ll 15 be getting a Nobel Peace Prize any (off-campus) time soon. You’ll probably still go down in history as one of the worst political leaders of all time. You’ve killed about six million people for no reason, and that’s ruffled some feathers. I actually think you’re pretty evil.’ ‘Do you think Winston Churchill will still want to be friends? He seems like a cool guy.’ ‘Eat your tofu burger, Adolf.’
by max cooper.
I’ve noticed a recent trend of nostalgia towards the 1950s. People are always romanticising the past, but I feel like the ‘50s have been big recently. Despite how popular Mad Men is, and its quality, the thing I don’t understand it how people can look at it and see anything other than how terrible it would’ve been for most of us in the ‘50s. I mean, it wasn’t even that good for straight, white dudes. I’m pretty keenly aware of how badly I would’ve fit in if I was around then. I can’t move past how full of hate the 1950s were. I mean, women were systematically oppressed, homosexuals were, and left-wing politics. (I know that’s not a complete list by any means, but listing everything widely hated in the ‘50s would probably fill
this magazine.) It would be over a decade before it was legal to be queer anywhere in Australia; it would take most of the next decade for America’s Jim Crow laws to be removed or for the right to vote to be extended to aboriginal Australians. McCarthyism ran rampant in America and the Red Scare was pretty prominent all throughout the Western world thanks to the ideological pissing contest going on between America and Russia at the time. Honestly though, looking back at the ‘50s with a nostalgic eye weirds me out. I literally (in the dictionary rather than hyperbolic sense) can’t fathom what my life would be like in the ‘50s because not only would I be classified as mentally ill for who I love, but I’d face the threat
of blackmail for this. Ruling out blackmail, there’s still the threat of job loss, and I’m not even going to try and explain how traumatic it is to be told your sexuality doesn’t just make you less of a person (thanks modern culture!) but mentally ill on top of that. And that doesn’t even take into account the possibilities of violence. The ‘lavender scare’ was nothing compared to the violence that was routine at the time. The counterculture and liberation movements of the ‘60s were partly prompted by how abjectly awful the ‘50s were for anyone who was part of a minority. I don’t want to belabour the point but… if you’re looking back on the ‘50s with a smile on your face, it’s quite likely you’re not looking hard enough.
by oshadha aluthwala.
The ‘60s were a time of change, of reform, of opening minds to an entire spectrum of possibilities that were never considered before. This is a short anthology of iconic quotes of the era, from the people that shaped it. ‘I want to grow old without facelifts… I want to have the courage to loyal to the face I’ve made. Sometimes I think it would be easier to avoid old age, to die young, but then you’d never complete your life, would you? You’d never wholly know you.’ Marilyn Monroe The 1960s, particularly the late 1960s, marked the end of the Golden Age of Hollywood. This era of classical Hollywood cinematography was one in which Marilyn Monroe played a huge role; she was quite possibly the original blonde bombshell, and a significant sex symbol and actress of the early 1960’s. She was one of the most famous women in Hollywood at the time, made more famous by her untimely death from an overdose of sleeping pills that was deemed a ‘probable suicide’. She was 36 years old. ‘Tolerance implies no lack of commitment to one’s beliefs. Rather it condemns the oppression or persecution of others.’ - John F Kennedy John F. Kennedy (JFK) was the 35th President of the United States. He served from 1961 until his assassination in 1963, while the US
government liberalised, supporting African American civil rights, as well as increased healthcare for the elderly and the poor. He was rumoured to have had an affair with Marilyn Monroe; some conspiracy theorists claim that he had a role in her untimely death. ‘We live in a world where we have to hide to make love, while violence is practised in broad daylight.’ - John Lennon It’s peculiar that John Lennon (of the Beatles fame) was constantly writing and singing songs of peace in both a spiritual and physical sense, when he himself was a very violent person. He openly attested to the fact that he hit women and got into brawls with men. Even after supposedly finding his one true love, muse, and source of inner peace in Yoko Ono, left her for a brief period to find sexual satisfaction in numerous partners and led a very destructive life of alcohol and drug abuse for a year and a half. He, too, died an untimely death, also due to an assassination. ‘…a half million young people can get together and have three days of fun and music and having nothing but fun and music, and I God Bless You for it!’ - Max Yasgur A discussion of the ‘60s is not complete without Woodstock, what with it being one of Rolling Stone’s 50
Moments That Changed the History of Rock and Roll. Advertised as being ‘An Aquarian Exposition: 3 Days of Peace and Music’, Max Yasgur (the owner of the dairy farm on which Woodstock was held) was right to some extent; given the number of people that attended, and the poor sanitation and inconsistent weather, it was impressive that only 6 of the 400000 attendees died (one by heroin overdose, another by being run-over by a tractor, and the others due to miscarriages). The Beatles, who were due to perform that day, were banned from entering the country by Richard Nixon (JFK’s successor), but notable acts that did perform include Santana, The Who, and Jimi Hendrix. ‘If it feels good, do it’ - Unknown The ‘swinging’ ‘60s are mostly famous for three main reasons; hippies, psychedelics, and the idea of ‘free love’. This was epitomised in the ‘Summer of Love’ in 1967; a time of sharing of living spaces, resources, and bodily fluids amongst total strangers. This hippie movement resulted in some radical changes in society- our current liberal (well, relatively liberal) thoughts towards sex and relationships, as well as co-educational institutions, and increased discussion of legalisation of abortion, birth control, homosexuality, and women’s rights can be attributed to it.
by holly ritson.
Michael Jackson wasn’t a paedophile yet; everyone thought Michael Jackson was cute and cool.
I know nothing about the 1970s, other than what I learned from watching That 70s Show after school. So I started asking people who lived through the 70s - people like my parents, the women I work with, Casey’s mum - what they remembered from those hazy, orange tinted years. Turns out, asking these folks to ‘talk about the 70s’ initially elicits some ums and ahs and ‘I don’t really remember much,’ followed by some serious old person rambling. Threads Denim was the fabric of choice, followed closely by cheesecloth, corduroy and velour. Just imagining the variety of textures you’d rub up against in discotheques gives me goosebumps. Platform shoes in all their goldfish filled glory, long hair for men and women (gender equality, man) and, according to my mum, headbands, were ‘copasetic’. The Boob Tube With the advent of colour television in the mid-70s (though generally only one family in the neighbourhood was lucky enough
to have one) spending hours in front of the idiot box quickly became a favourite pastime. Gilligan’s Island, I Dream of Jeannie and Charlie’s Angels provided an insight into other worlds, while The Class of ’74, Play School and the controversial, full frontal soap opera Number 96 provided local content.
Aboriginal land rights.
The 70s were also the decade of the blockbuster, with films like Jaws, E.T., Star Wars and Airport 1,2,3 and 4 gracing the screens of drive-ins around the country.
What else were the standout features of the 70s, according to those who lived them? The murder of Dr George Duncan, nonchalant attitudes towards sunburn and skin cancer, Glam Rockers, jatz biscuits and smoked oysters as party snacks, ABBA, the controversial purchase of Pollack’s Blue Poles, Kate Bush’s video for Babushka, 5c bags of mixed lollies, and rainbow coloured candles all got a mention.
The Man Political upheaval dominated the 1970s, with the sense of optimism and change that began in the America of the swinging 60s taking its sweet time to reach our sunny shores. The Whitlam government came into power at the beginning of the decade, bringing in free education, ending conscription and the Vietnam War and introducing no fault divorce. In 1975, his time was deemed to be over, and a Liberal government re-took the reins. Locally, South Australia was graced with the pink shorts and tanned legs of a Mr. Don Dunstan, who decriminalised homosexuality and ensured recognition of
And acknowledging the blatant inappropriateness of referring to politics as ‘the man,’ second wave feminism, kicked off by Germaine Greer’s The Female Eunuch, blazoned through the decade. And some potpourri…
Seems like ‘the good old days’ of our parents’ generation, despite being without internet, Facebook and i-everything, had a lot going on. Somehow though, all the ‘cats’ I spoke to had fond memories of lazy Saturday afternoon BBQs and a quieter, calmer life. So maybe there is something to be said for mixing myself a Bloody Mary, putting on a Skyhooks record, and turning off my phone for a day.
I only managed to catch a year of the ‘80s, and so from my perspective it mostly consisted of a surplus of drool, soft toys and chewing on discarded cigarette butts in parks. PAGE There was also minimal poop 18 autonomy. However, like (I suspect) (off-campus) most people born in 1989, when I’m ignorant on a topic, I hit up Wikipedia.
My first mistake was including ‘the’ in the search. What resulted was probably symbolic of most people’s initial thoughts on the decade, with the first hit being ‘1980s in Fashion’, and leaving readers to wade through ‘Hairstyles in the 1980s’, ‘Presidency of Ronald Reagan’, ‘1980s in music’, ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ and then some, before finally linking to a page with an overview. Reading it was my second mistake. The ‘80s were filled with terrorist attacks, governmental changes, medical breakthroughs, economic
by elizabeth flux.
rises and falls, natural disasters, influential musicians and artists, uprisings, and slotted in between all this is ‘pop culture’ and ‘toys’. So pretty much the same as any other decade. The big picture never really changes. The description above could be applied to the ‘90s, to the ‘30s, to the whatever the hell we call the decade we are in now. We do what we can, and we do budge on major issues. Women can now vote, slaves are no longer a thing, however for some reason everyone in America needs a gun forever, people will unveil their superficially hidden racism at the drop of a hat, and homophobia is still apparently rampant. In the ‘80s we didn’t have a computer for every member of the family, we didn’t have the internet – hell, we didn’t even have Goosebumps. We did however get Back to the Future and The
NINETIES The ‘90s are a hazy memory.
The decade gave us instagram and hipsters and wait, what? That’s not the 90s, you say? OH HOW WRONG ARE YOU. Everything cultural in the last 5 years, everything, is a ‘90s throwback. It’s us, middleclass kids on the verge of adulthood, scrambling, clambering, desperately clawing at the only lingering fragments of a childhood we haven’t quite managed to erase with booze. We’re dreaming it’s the ‘90s right now; we’re dreaming you’ve still got the blonde hair you had as a kid, and his parents are still together, and we’re all not this fucking tired and lonely and our parents don’t hate us for what they’ve given away. We’re still fucking dreaming, friends, dreaming that when we take photos they look like the ones you’ve got sitting, collecting dust and romanticism, in the back room of your parents’ house, all poorly lit and fuzzy round the edges. We love our
Simpsons (just). But that’s where the categorising should end. On the things that matter, they are continuous , and as yet have no cut off point. We draw arbitrary lines everywhere – between decades, between centuries, between races, between genders, between beliefs, between ages, and on and on it goes. If we could harvest all the energy wasted on prejudice we would probably have around 1.21 gigawatts and be able to hit 88 and travel back in time and give the relevant people a good hard slap in the face. So, while we’re busy putting things in boxes and remembering the 80s as a time of big hair, obnoxious music and clothes that are simultaneously baggy and loose, it’s easy to overlook or ignore the things that spill over, and that don’t quite fit. Great Scott! That got heavy.
by stella crawford.
bread, we love our butter, but most of all we love our memories. We grew up knowing where our next meal was coming from, and that ‘whatever else happens, know that we’ll always love you’, and that we were fucking special. And in dealing with knowing that we’re spoiled and selfish, it turns out we’ve also become sentimental twits who’ll romanticise a decade we spent learning to use a dunny and fighting with our brothers over remotes before the Wii was even a thing. Fuck the ‘90s. But then, I still eat 2 minute noodles for lunch when there’s nobody to tell me not to. Which is, well - there’s an empty noodle bowl on my bedside table, right now. Whoops? I sit watching the Daria DVD and wanting to be her when I should be watching lectures, and I primarily
use iview to catch up on all the cartoons I never got to watch when I was a kid. I go to parties and they play songs I remember off the So Fresh CDs still hidden in the bottom drawer of my desk and everyone goes hoarse singing; singing songs I never liked at the time, but now I’m going hoarse singing them as well. I can’t write the ‘90s. I’m 20, I barely lived the ‘90s. But we’re in the process of recreating our childhood, and so this right here is as close as I can get to the ‘90s. Can I let you know how it goes in 5 years, maybe?
by tom sheldrick.
I was at the taping of the final episode of Friends in 2004. The following is my recollection of a scene that was deleted from the final cut: The scene started with Phoebe entering Central Perk and joining her 5 friends who were already sitting in their usual spot. ‘Hey ya,’ Phoebe sang—Phoebe was in one of her singing moods. ‘Hey ya,’ the 5 friends sang back in unison. ‘Wow, that was weird,’ Joey’s head didn’t come up from the book it was buried in. ‘You know I still think Snape is one of the good guys.’ ‘Could you be any more of an idiot?’ Chandler quipped, which the audience somehow still found hilarious. ‘Oh come on honey, why so serious?’ Monica asked, in a weird hissing voice which pleased the audience. ‘By the way, Joey, did you read The Da Vinci Code? Jesus having children… ha! What’s next, us having a black President?’
This was too much for the studio audience, who burst in to uproarious laughter that lasted a full minute. ‘Nah I never read it. The audiobook wasn’t on Bearshare,’ replied Joey matter-of-factly. ‘I can’t actually read. I just listen to the audiobook and then pretend to read. Does that make me crazy?’ ‘Probably,’ Phoebe sang. ‘Sorry, I forgot my iPod so I’ve been singing all day. I’ve almost got 100 problems today but this cute little female puppy sure isn’t one.’ Phoebe pulled a dead puppy from her handbag. It seemed like a problem to me. ‘You tube—shit, sorry, keep rolling—you two come with me across the road,’ Phoebe told Chandler and Monica, ‘I need to find the mean girls who sold me this puppy without a tax receipt.’ ‘Maybe we could find someone with some sort of God delusion who thinks they can heal it,’ Chandler teased Phoebe. Phoebe still hadn’t realised the puppy was dead as the three of them left the coffee shop. I’ve never got what her deal was.
‘So Rachel, are we fighting at the moment or not? I forget,’ Ross asked (he had asked her this already six times this episode). ‘Why do you keep asking me that? Because if you want a fight, mister, BRING IT ON!’ she replied, ‘let me just go and put on some makeup, I look like an ogre.’ Ross and Joey were the only ones remaining at their usual spot and it seemed like Joey had forgotten his line. ‘Say something Joey, you haven’t spoken since 9/11,’ Ross’ streak of terrible adlibbing continued. ‘Science is cool, not nerdy. Umm say, are you still an actor?’ ‘Oh yeah that reminds me,’ Joey had remembered his line. ‘Get this: James Cameron asked me to be in some high budget sci-fi movie where I play some alien creature thing. He said that it won’t be released until late 2009 so I told him no way. I’m almost famous now anyway.’ ‘But science is cool,’ sighed Ross. ‘CUT!’
IT’S NOT A FASHION STATEMENT, IT’S A FUCKING DEATHWISH, MOM.
What is a Pete Wentz? Where did he come from, and where did he go? How did this nuggety man become the poster-boy for a sub-sub-culture that defined my life from ages thirteen through seventeen? In spite of what the occasional cluster of teenagers at the train station and/or Hindley St McDonalds suggests, I am pretty sure that the scene is dead. It’s dead, you guys. It’s dead and all the photos I have from high school are really embarrassing, but I don’t regret the phase at all. Some people never had a rebellious period, or belonged to one particular group, or they don’t
have any completely ridiculous pictures taken in all seriousness to look back on. I have hundreds. And I took them all myself in my bathroom mirror, under a cloud of hairspray and Taking Back Sunday songs. Being a super misunderstood emo kid was relief from my suffocating, comfortable middle class home, where once, a condition of being grounded was that I was no longer allowed to wear black clothes.
OKAY I PROMISE’ was a staple in my MSN Messenger screen name for a long time), in extra tight skinny jeans and a Dashboard Confessional t-shirt, with red marker Xs on my wrists. As it turns out, being ‘straight-edge’ (see: boring) is pretty easy when you’re fourteen and no one has ever offered you drugs before. There was a smugness in being a self-appointed outcast, and all u haters n fakes will never understand my pain.
While other people were busy getting wasted and having sex, I was up on my high horse with my first generation iPod jamming to My Chemical Romance (‘I’M NOT
I knew my place. I mean, it could change at any minute if someone took me out of their Top 8, but the risk was worth it for the euphoria when you were #1. Myspace was
words: genevieve novak art: ann nguyen-hoang at its height, and all I wanted in the world was for Fall Out Boy to come to Adelaide. The worst thing someone could call me was a poser, and the news that your favourite band had ‘sold out’ was akin to being the victim of a hate-crime. I struggled to understand why anyone bought clothes anywhere other than Midwest Trader, and once I made the shop clerk at Daily Grind very uncomfortable for 20 minutes while I tried to figure out what I wanted my personalised belt buckle to say. ‘ANARCHY’ was too expensive and I also didn’t know what it meant, so ‘HXC’ won out (yeah, what? What?). I recall shamelessly trying to guilt my mother into letting me get the
snakebites I needed and the tattoos I routinely drew on in Maths, claiming that without them, I would be ‘a social pariah’ (‘Get new friends,’ thanks Mum, you dick). Being a teenager sucks, but your mother actively rejecting all your attempts to be your true, emo self was just agony: an agony I expressed by deepening my side-part and turning The Used right up. It was a beautiful cycle. These days, I just don’t feel like my clothes are angry enough. My jeans, no longer too tight to run or sit in, would look so much better if I had a white studded belt bucked on the side to hold
them up. My Converse are getting seriously lonely. How are people supposed to know the real me if Facebook doesn’t allow customised layouts or autoplay? I don’t miss the look on Brendon Urie’s face when I shouted ‘your music will stand the test of time!!!’ at a Panic! at the Disco meet-and-greet, but I actually looked really cool with raccoon-tail stripes in my hair, guys. I miss Myspace. I miss wearing pink eyeliner. I miss my Fall Out Boy: Drama Club t-shirt (limited edition, jealous?). Screw you Russia, if emo is illegal then I’m an outlaw. I’m sick of being delicate with my iPhone – I WANT MY SIDEKICK BACK. ◊
DESTROY THE JOINT words: stella crawford
‘The old man recently died a few weeks ago of shame. To think that he had a daughter who told lies every time she stood for parliament.’ Alan Jones ‘You know, he’s got a good-rating program, even though it’s basically, you know, most of the stuff is middle-ofthe-road fascism.’ Paul Keating. ‘Some of the reaction is (because) they resent the influence he has, and (they) display a certain amount of jealousy.’ John Howard.
The rhetoric around the latest Alan Jones scandal has been particularly fine. There are any number of easily digestible stories of what happened doing the rounds. You can have your pick as to who the man is, and what makes him tick, and most importantly, whether you think he should get fired. Back in the day, I used to have a theory that Alan Jones secretly hated his job. It’s seemed all along, he’s been committed to nothing as much as he’s been committed to being bad at his work. Not bad ratings wise, of course, because that might actually get him fired, but bad in a ‘mentally checked out of this game’ kind of way. He’s been so darn consistent in breaking codes of practice, both for commercial radio, and for his station 2UE; it really does feel like he’s trying. He’s plagiarised, taken money under the table for on-air comment, published the suppressed name of a juvenile witness, defamed more people than you could count even if you were
really keen on defamation law and liked reading cases in your free time, incited racist violence, personally endorsed two investment companies that folded and left shareholders badly off, prejudiced multiple trials, and reported horribly inaccurate science. So yeah, sometimes you can’t help but wonder if the whole thing is his subconscious at war: one half fighting to escape, and the other digging in its heels and working to make him indispensable. He’s pretty much un-fireable. He hosts the number one breakfast show in Sydney, and 2GB owes him a lot; he’s dragged them, no doubt kicking and screaming, out of obscurity and into the glorious lights of good ratings and national controversy. Christ, he’s even bought into the company that pays his wages. He’s the fourth largest shareholder of Macquarie Radio Network, the parent company of the station (2GB) on which he broadcasts. He’s dug his heels in pretty good.
It turns out, unfortunately, that someone’s already written a book1 on my theory. Whatever, though, because the point is this: Alan Jones is not a happy dude. Alan Jones likes to believe life is hard. Case in point: his apology to Julia Gillard. If life were like an episode of Rake, someone would have interrupted Alan Jones’ press conference and asked him whether his relationship with his father was the source of his troubles in life. It’s the least a grown man deserves for referencing his own father and the Prime Minister’s father and ***all of the fathers2 in just the first 5 minutes of the speech. Someone would be quoting Freud, and Cleaver would be muttering about Oedipus under his breath. 1. Chris Masters’ Jonestown: The Power and the Myth of Alan Jones. He went so far as to claim it was Jones’ repressed homosexuality that was messing him up from the inside out. 2. The ones that weren’t there and never loved you etc.
Indeed, if Jones hadn’t already made a press conference look like hard work, things have only gotten harder. In the days since his speech, Alan Jones and his supporters have gotten a lot less apologetic. As with any apology that’s not accepted, the offerer gets a little resentful. And then suddenly we’re throwing around words like ‘silencing’ and ‘persecution’ and slamming our bedroom doors. Ironically, Jones’ paranoia is correct in this respect – people are out to get him fired, and it’s not about his apology or non-apology at all. In fact, a lot of it’s not even about that Julia Gillard comment. He’s simply pissed off too many people; too many people are nursing chipped shoulders or offended sensibilities. There’s an argument that Jones should be sacked because he broke the rules. He broke the common decency agreement; the one that dictates that family and loved ones get left out of it when we’re playing politics. Where it gets complicated,
however, is that he’s also broken hundreds of other rules. In fact, one of the prime mobilisers in the online campaign to pressure companies to cease advertising with 2GB has been the ‘Destroy the Joint’ Facebook group. The group has over 10,000 members, and takes its name from a previous comment of Jones’: where he indicated that women in politics were ‘destroying the joint’. These people are involved not because of a trespass to common decency, but in support of women’s rights. The moral of this particular story is that, in fact, there’s no such thing as a moral high ground in this case. A lot of people are effectively piggybacking; jumping on the ‘common decency’ bandwagon when in reality, they’d been on the ‘I hate Alan’ train for years. Or pleading ‘second chances’ and ‘mistakes’ when really there’s very little Alan Jones could do to offend them. The illusion that this could ever be apolitical is gone. Alan Jones is not a bipartisan issue. Here is another story:
The man is Alan Jones. The year is 2012. He’s said so many unforgivable things, and none of them will get him fired3. Each time, in my first impulse of anger, I could wish him fired. In my first impulse of anger, I could wish his radio station brought down. The blurry figures standing around him, shielding him with pacifying words; I could wish them brought down too. But then I get over it, and so should you. And you know why? Because the people listening: they carry on listening regardless of what he says. And frankly, if a person can’t save themselves when rescue lays only a twist of the dial away, they don’t need me to save them either. Alan Jones won’t get fired, but even if he does, the bile, sexism and disrespect will persevere. John Laws will probably get the breakfast gig. ◊
3. Forgive me if he’s been fired since my deadline.
DON’T DO THIS. The following arrived at On Dit anonymously. Needless to say, we in no way condone these actions. They are legally questionable, and likely to get you arrested, or injured, or sued, or shouted at. We present them here only as an academic insight into the techniques of hardcore environmentalist groups. Don’t do them. Are we cool?
art: saskia scott words: sandy beaches The following are a variety of techniques for taking direct action against corporations that are cutting down our trees, poisoning our air and water, destroying indigenous communities, and killing wildlife. These techniques have varying degrees of seriousness. Some merely interrupt operations; others are aimed at property destruction. These techniques add a substantial cost to destructive operations and, in a climate where projects are struggling for approval or are financially uncertain, can result in them being stopped. The most important thing when thinking about these techniques is to plan ahead and know your own limits. These are only preliminary descriptions, so please do more research before you embark on any of them.
Affinity groups If you don’t want to go it alone,
a good group with which to plan a direct action is an affinity group. An affinity group is a small group between roughly 4 and 15 of people who know each other well, share the same values and trust one another. A group of close friends is a potential affinity group waiting to happen. If you are operating as part of a bigger protest that you need to drive to, the number of people you can fit in a car could be a good number. What’s important about an affinity group is that it’s able to make quick decisions without getting tied down in formal structures and that no decisions will be made that will make anyone feel uncomfortable. It is crucial that you know each other’s limits and respect them.
Lock on and blockades Blockading, when done with enough people, can be extremely effective. Coalmines often have specific railways destined for coal ports — sitting on these lines
significantly slows down their operations and drives up their expenses. While this can result in arrests, it often doesn’t. The next step up from this is locking on. Locking yourself to a piece of machinery will definitely mean getting arrested. However, being chained to a piece of equipment and preventing it from moving means that, even when you’re not on a railway, equipment cannot simply be taken around as it can with blockades. It also means that you will take significantly longer to be dragged away. Once you’re locked on securely, you will basically be able to hold the machine up until you are dehydrated or badly need to pee. You might want to investigate how to build a ‘lock box’ to make it harder to cut you off the machine.
Tree sits Well-advertised tree sits will prevent anyone who doesn’t want to be charged with manslaughter
from logging your tree. They also provide a great opportunity to become connected with the area you’re looking at saving, and to develop skills in simple living and tree climbing1. Earlier this year, a brave woman in Tasmania finished what had been a year-long tree sit. One way to increase the efficacy of tree sits is to fix cables between different trees, including the one you are sitting in. These must be very well advertised, as the intended effect is that loggers will not attempt to fell any adjacent trees for fear of pulling down your tree or pulling down other trees on top of themselves. Please attempt this cautiously.
Tree spiking Tree spiking has the capacity to severely disrupt logging operations. It means blades will need to be 1. A skill you should make sure you are very good at before attempting a tree sit.
replaced and (if done enough times) can create a serious cost for the logging company. There are two schools of thought on tree spiking. The first involves driving several nails at a downward angle into the first two or three feet above ground. In felling the tree, the sawyer is likely to hit at least one of them. There is an objection to this type of spiking: the possibility, however remote, that the sawyer might be injured — either by the kickback of the saw striking the nail, or by the chain, should it break when striking the spike. Even though this is a remote possibility, it is not something we recommend. The second technique is to place the spikes in the trees well above the area where the fellers will operate. The object of the spiking in this case is to destroy the blades in the sawmill. Since, in large mills, the blades are either operated from a control booth some distance from the actual cutting, or are
protected by a Plexiglas shield, this method is unlikely to cause anyone physical injury — even if a blade were to shatter upon striking a spike, which is unlikely.
Sabotage Any motor vehicle can be disabled by pouring sand into the crankshaft. Sugar is not effective for diesel fuel tanks and, at best, will probably clog the filters. Pour sand or dirt in the oil filter. These have a distinct advantage: you can use sand or dirt lying around rather than bringing incriminating supplies. The more damaging sabotage you inflict, the greater costs — both in lost time and in repair costs inflicted on the company. Companies doing exploratory ventures or unsure whether to go ahead in projects can feel this pressure acutely. This is especially true in remote areas to which it is very difficult to transport large pieces of equipment. ◊
THE DANGERS OF BEING A PAGE
FREE-MARKET LOVING SOCIALIST EMBRACING
‘PRO-LIFE’ FEARING GLOBAL WARMING DENIER WITH
HTENDENCIES O M OANDSAPREDISPOSITION E X U A TOL SAVING THE MURRAY. In a society where everything and everyone must be sorted, allocated, grouped and classed, it is no wonder that labels have become such a relied-upon, allencompassing means through which to draw cheap stereotypes and easy assumptions. We see generalisations perpetuated throughout our lives, facilitated through our social media and supported by our politicians. Indeed, labels are a simple means through which to ascertain the gender identification, sexual orientation, racial background or STD-status of any given individual. However, the utility of labels ends in the same place it is most prominently used—in politics. Introducing over-arching, sweeping labels into political debate has been the greatest downfall of empowering modern politics to improve the human condition. The introduction of political parties, unified under broad banners of ‘socialism’ or
‘conservatism’ (or borderline ‘fascism’ if you are the National Front party of France and immigrant-hating is your sort of thing) has led democracy down a self-defeating path of stagnancy. Whilst the original developers of the democratic political process viewed decisive political groupings as necessary to the healthy discussion and debate of political issues, what we instead have inherited is an inefficient system of endless bickering, constant conflict and political stances that are about as unmovable as Edward Cullen’s quiff (is that still a relevant reference? One can only hope so). Our reliance on placing ourselves and others on an imaginary political line of ‘left’ and ‘right’ threatens to leave us complacent on properly investigating the merits of individual issues, in favour of subscribing to a general position on the world around us. We are increasingly ordering the political
fast food combo deal—I’ll take a side of climate change scepticism and a super sized affiliation to traditional ‘Australian’ values with my conservative-right (un)happy meal, thanks.
This complacency holds serious consequences for the quality and progression of political discussion in this country. Most prominently, it detracts from a considered debate on individual issues and instead transforms political concerns into giant ideological battles. In the midst of these wars, the individual political issue can easily become overlooked, generalized or all together forgotten. Take same-sex marriage, for instance. What started (and should have remained contained) to a debate on extending the legal power of marriage to same-sex couples has conflated into a deadlock between left and right, with one side fearing for the innocence of our poor,
words: sherin lim-hussain art: daisy freeburn impressionable children (always the children) and the other attacking supposedly homophobic views and spouting fear of the Christian influence in politics. Ultimately, individual rights are swallowed up into overpowering political agendas and no progress is made either way. Another problem with political groupings is the generalisations that are made to comply with people’s perceptions, further limiting the ability of individuals to hold their own, unique ideals. I read an article that came out of the Republican convention over in the US a few months ago. It proclaimed that ‘yes, there are gay Republicans’ and featured obligatory go-go dancing shots of said individuals to prove this. The men and women interviewed for this article said that whilst they did not agree with the GOP’s stance on samesex marriage, to them the fiscal policies of the Republican Party had earned their vote. Shock and horror followed this ‘explosive’
article, with people struggling to reconcile how homosexuals could vote for the GOP. If we were to stop forcing people into political pigeonholes like this we might actually see some movement on social issues. Think about it—if each party has to develop their own policies to appeal to their voter base, and that base could be made up equally of Christians, immigrants, Muslims, environmentalists and Jersey Shore fans, wouldn’t the subsequent policies represent more clearly the wants of a diversity of Australians? Rather than grouping the pros against the nos we could have a bit of both voting on either side of politics—consequently sending the parties into a panic and compelling them to moderate their policies towards a more representative middle ground. Until we start to give politics the time and thought it deserves, we really are doing a severe disservice to moving debate and
social change forward. Let’s stop allowing our politicians to overlook the seriousness of issues in favour of ideological point-scoring, drawing on anti-immigration sentiments to ‘stop the boats’ or declaring any conservatism ‘fascist’. Let’s instead demand a proper discussion of issues that transcends political labelling and puts reasoned thought before harmful stereotypes. Let’s challenge ourselves and others to have respectful debates on the issues at hand, rather than disintegrating our dialogue into irreconcilable ideological differences. Let’s drop the easy labelling and start the more difficult conversations we should have been having years ago. ◊
DUISBURG redbubble.com/people/burley photos: andrew burley
D R I P P I N G
words and photos: holly ritson It’s been a year since I arrived in Thrissur, Kerala, India. I’m home now though, safe, surrounded. We’re watching a documentary on Gandhi in a tutorial. A Gujurati shop owner sobs as he explains that his bangle-making factory was destroyed in the 2001 riots, and he hasn’t been able to rebuild. Lies, I think. Crocodile tears for the camera. A year on, the smell of the toilets in Indian restaurants still makes my nostrils flinch. I think I need to write about India. *** In Kerala, the monsoon season starts in June and lasts until late September. In October, sharathkaaldam starts, bringing hot, dry mornings. Mornings on which you splash in the cool water that spills out of the buckets you washed your clothes in; well water washing over your toes, back to where it came from. In the afternoon, at around 3 o’clock, the rain comes. Heavy, hot drops puddling in the chilli powder dirt. Washing sits on the line for days trying to dry, the rain surprising you with its regularity. Today you’re going to Atripalli. Puzzled looks from Sunitha and Bindhu tell you you’re saying something wrong. Atripalli? Oh, Adripalli. Adripalli then. Adripalli. Ugh, the waterfalls. Today you’re going to the waterfalls. There’s no petrol strike today. Sunitha has taken the day off work. In fact, her boss is coming too; he’ll drive – you’ll find that easier. On Sundays your yoga guru goes to church, so no 7am classes this morning. But still, you work your way through the routine, finding space between your breaths. Breakfast is idli with chutney and tore; it’s going to be a good day. You pack your tiffin with choor and ailah curry for lunch – even in dollar-a-day India, your impecunious European backpacking habits survive.
On the bus to Ollur (‘it’s on the way to Atripalli; we’ll meet my boss at the factory’) every temple, church, mosque is pointed out to you, as though these past two months were only spent sitting on your camp bed, reading photocopied books and listening to songs that remind you of home. They try to hold your hand when crossing the road; you shake yourself free, claiming you don’t like to be touched. At the aluminium factory, the sulphuric acid is so strong it makes your eyes water and your chest tighten. The mnemonics your year 12 chemistry teacher gave you to recall the process of electroplating come flooding back to you. OIL RIG: oxidation is loss, reduction is gain. Rusting machinery and tin sheds inspire you to take out your shiny new camera, but you don’t. Where would you start? Every shadow, every angle cries out to be captured, but the others are calling you on; you keep walking. You meet the manager, and the boss, and his wife, and their three charming children who have been learning English and want to move to Australia. The conversation moves around you as you flick through the meticulously kept, handwritten notebooks of accounts, cheques, balances. Someone starts smoking; you cough some more. The manager laughs and mimes placing a wreath of flowers around your neck. Your friends coyly look away; everyone else stares. You stare back, seeking answers and understanding. Apparently (giggle giggle) he likes you (giggle giggle) and that means he wants to marry you (giggle giggle). And then you’re expected to respond. Giggle…giggle... They move on, but now the manager will come in the car with you. There’s space for five after all, and it’s such a lovely day for a drive. We four, Sunitha and Bindhu and manager and you, can squeeze into a rickshaw for two. No one tells you where it’s going, but you
end up outside the brightly painted mansion of a Bollywood film director, who’s somehow related to the boss or the manager or the driver – you’re not sure and never really find out. More children, more polite conversation that’s impolitely incomprehensible to you. You drink their tea, eat their soup and their number-1-moldedchoc-chip-biscuits; the flies have been ceremoniously, electrically, swatted. Then the photos – you are a minor celebrity after all. Awkward hand placement, some uncomfortable use of the zoom on a Nokia, constant readjustment of your churidar to ensure appropriate modesty, and it’s over. Finally, you’re on your way, via quick stops at the other aluminium factory, a petrol station, a shop for bananas and more cigarettes. Stopping for lunch at a roadside hotel causes you to revert to the tantrum-throwing 8-year-old you were when roadtripping across the Kimberly with your parents. No,
you can’t find the simple words to explain why you’re so upset and insist on eating your packed lunch in the carpark. And no, you don’t want to come back inside and sit at the table, your tears making everything so salty as to be inedible. At least you have a window seat, winding down the window as the car pulls back onto the highway; you can’t hear their questions over the sound of car horns and the wind. The road starts winding upwards, the air gets wetter, the plants greener. You see the signs showing happy families, picnicking in Western clothing: Tourist Park ahead. The boss turns into a gated area marked ‘Thoomapuzhi Falls’. This isn’t it, you protest; you’re at the wrong place. But there are waterfalls here, and picnic places, and people taking photos and splashing in the mist. As the water rushes under the bridge, it’s churned to a dirty foam. Everything is covered in green
and black moss, dripping with old growth. You do eventually reach Atripalli, and it’s only 2:30. You know it’s the right place because there are stalls selling plastic hats and peanut brittle and brightly coloured toys. The falls are a distance away, but there is an undeniable ‘wow’ moment. The falls send rainbows of mist flying across the gorge, wetting your cheeks again. A young couple from London gets you to take their photo; you consider the stories they’ll tell at dinner parties, finishing each other’s sentences, reminding each other of forgotten details. Then it’s as if each molecule of water has become swollen, turning into fat drops of rain. Water everywhere, and not a drop to drink. You laugh. Of course it rains, that’s why you’d started carrying an umbrella with you – your passport to relative comfort. Running for the car you don’t
wait for the others. You can’t even see them for the sheets of rain. You laugh some more. Drenched, you squeeze back into the car, umbrellas dripping on your feet, shawls laid out across the back seat to hopefully dry before they’re needed again. On the drive home, the Kerala Forest department reminds you: ‘Forest means water. Water means life. Life means everything.’ When you get home, you retreat to your camp bed, trying to reconnect to your own space via the ever-less-white cords of your headphones. Sunitha and Bindhu take cha at the hostel, returning with banana puri and demands for photos. As each girl returns home from their day, questions are asked and stories told. By dinnertime though, they’ve tired of trying to understand your accented English and broken Malayalam. You’re left to eat your curry and rice in silence, listening to their conversations for words
and expressions you think you can understand: ‘Holly’ ‘choor illa’, exasperated confusion. You’re fucking tired, exhausted, over it. The sense of not understanding your surroundings unsettles and confuses you. Always being noticed and looked at challenges your sense of self. Having 8 mothers, as in the 8 women you live with, makes you miss your real mother even more. But as you write your diary that night, you chastise yourself for being sooky, for not controlling your emotions, and for obsessing over your boyfriend’s failure to respond to your message. *** You finally woke up one morning in late November and have to put a cardigan on. The rain was over; winter was here. A week later you were in England, shivering bitterly in your boyfriend’s unheated student house, finding comfort in a pint
of ale, his arms and the English language. The potable water from the tap was icy; showers, though more familiar than the bucket and jug system you had gotten used to, provided none of that essential cleansing. *** Get me the fuck out of this hellhole, I would write, nightly. I’d scold myself, in writing of course, causing my journal to now read somewhat schizophrenically. ‘Stop worrying’ ‘ just chill out’ ‘go with the flow’ ‘enjoy travelling’ ‘ it’s all part of the experience’. It wasn’t until months later, reading an article on ‘ failed travels’ that I started answering questions about my time in India honestly. I was scared, incessantly challenged, lonely. But there’s a difference between being alone and being lonely. India surrounded me, drowned me with its incessant, invasive, incredible presence, a presence I didn’t, couldn’t and will never understand. ◊
PAST THE VEIL
May was tired. Too tired to be at the party, crammed in a corner with a plastic cup, pretending to enjoy the music. It was a beautiful autumn twilight, the sultry summer heat beginning to falter beneath the relentless cool of the evening breeze. There was playfulness to the wind, a sly caprice as it caught up dying leaves and tossed them to and fro. The bass was thumping, her friends were drinking, and she was lurking. Lurking and waiting for an escape route to present itself. Before someone decided a human pyramid was in order. ‘Hey.’ One of Sarah’s friends, she presumed. He looked a little old for the crowd. How old… she couldn’t say. He had a glass of wine clasped loosely in one hand, a canapé in the other. Thin tattoos twined around his fingers, curling up to wrap his wrists in manacles of ivy. There were flecks of green and purple against the stark black lines, and in the half-light pouring through the window they seemed to ripple beneath his skin, fighting to break free.
‘Hi. One of Sarah’s friends?’ ‘I’m everyone’s friend.’ A flash of teeth in his smile. ‘What’s your name?’ he asked. His lips were a little too plump, reddened with wine. ‘May.’ Quiet. Non-committal. He’d get bored. ‘How apt.’ He grinned. ‘What do you mean?’ His smile was secretive. ‘It doesn’t matter.’ May frowned. There was something odd about him. He seemed… incorrigible, somehow. Wicked. A satyr, she thought suddenly. A satyr with riotous black curls and a tongue piercing. ‘I like your ring,’ he observed. He touched her hand and she found herself drawn in, drawn closer. His fingers encased hers, one thumb sliding over the side of her wrist. There was a playful note in his voice. An in-joke, she knew. But with whom? ‘Thanks.’ ‘Not enjoying the party?’ he asked. He didn’t release her hand. She shrugged. ‘They’re all the same.’ His smile grew teeth. ‘Aren’t they?’ he agreed. There was something happening. Something was caught in the music, pulsing with the bass, trembling above the sudden wail of a violin. A strange note of lucidity, glistening against the grit and dirt of the beat. ‘I’ve seen some good parties in my time,’ he continued. Was it her imagination, or was the music louder? She’d never heard the song before. She saw Fiona—neat, demure Fiona with her floral headband and sequined flats—caught in
Tom’s arms. She knew she ought to look away, but she couldn’t. They snagged her eyes and she was a reluctant voyeur, her eyes following Tom’s hands on her friend’s body. Fiona’s hands were always warm. Was her body the same? May took a gulp of her drink and it burnt down her throat like liquor. Lemonade, she’d asked for lemonade. She looked up and his eyes were there, molten and wicked. ‘Alright?’ he asked. She was scared, suddenly. Nothing had changed but her fear was a tangible thing, stroking cold fingers down her spine, sending her stomach flipping and shuddering. ‘I think,’ he said softly, ‘that this party is just about to begin.’ His eyes were terrible. ‘May?’ A familiar voice. Too familiar. Rescue and ruin all in one. The stranger’s grip on her hand tightened. She turned her head. ‘Hi, Alec.’ For a second—one single, infinitesimal second—she saw a bow in Alec’s hands and blood dripping between his fingers. A lyre and a skinned man. A python curled lazily around his neck, its red eyes fixed on hers. Black arrows and ill winds. His flesh melted and she saw the truth flickering beneath the veil, fey and obscene, as surely as she felt the talons biting into the side of her wrist. She dropped the cup. Wine splashed across the wooden floor, thick and rich. Her stomach revolted and she staggered, choking down bile. I haven’t drunk anything. I’m not drunk. Alec’s hands closed on her bare shoulders, clammy and grasping. She tried to cry out but her mouth was stitched shut, her eyes taped open. She was blind, floundering, gasping for air as the people on the dance floor wove themselves together, fingers and tongues entwined. She tried to move but she was bound in place, smothering on the spot as talons burnt scars on her wrists and cold hands tore
through the sinew of her shoulders. She could feel everything, all of a sudden. Everything and nothing all at once. The music poured into her veins and she felt the pressure building, bleeding from her nose and eyes and lips. She choked and inhaled omniscience. She knew and saw and spoke and tasted and heard and loved as she stood there blind and mute and dying. Charlie pulled away from Tristan, lips swollen. Felix pressed a kiss to Catherine’s forehead, tugging her closer. Tessa ran her fingers lightly over the inside of Lisa’s wrist, making promises. Sarah licked tequila off TJ’s stomach, laughing and gasping. Amy raised her glass in a toast, wine spilling from the cup to splatter her chest. May’s eyes snapped open. And the dark-haired stranger was there, right in front of her, lips dripping gore onto the floor. Heavy lidded eyes promising sex and lust and violence. Horns jutting proudly from his dishevelled curls, glistening white and deadly. Her stomach heaved. She was unravelling. She looked at her hands and they were paws, mottled and clawed. She could feel something lurching awake inside her, trapped beneath the arches of her ribs. It was hungry. But Alec’s hands on her shoulders bore it down, even as it seethed and writhed. They’re tearing me apart. ‘Fuck this, May. I’m getting you out of here.’ Alec sounded so human. She was wrenched away and hauled across the room, staggering. The grip on her wrists broke and the roaring in her ears increased a thousand-fold and then stuttered out as Alec jerked her through the crowd. She looked back over her shoulder and the stranger winked, smile twisting. Call me, he mouthed.
The door loomed before her like a mouth, open and hungry. I shouldn’t leave, she thought. I shouldn’t. Something bad will… She fought, but Alec was relentless. She collided with the night air and fell, hard, grazing her knees as the hands on her shoulders tightened to pull her upright again. He’d never been very kind. Cornflower hair and blue eyes like the summer sky, but cold. He had a temper. She’d seen him punch someone once. Smash his fist into their jaw without a second thought, his pretty blue eyes as icy as ever. There’d been blood and shouting and she’d just looked at his face. He’d scared her more than the blood had. ‘Are you alright?’ he asked. He looked like Alec again. Just Alec. But she knew she would never look at him again without seeing. Without knowing. Without seeing bows and black arrows and blood. She shivered. ‘I’ll be fine,’ she said softly. Not at all. ‘Are you drunk?’ He was accusing her now, she knew. Drunk girls get what they deserve. He reached for her arm with winestained fingers. She stepped away, wrapping her arms around herself. She’d left her jacket behind. The world was hovering between summer and winter, the moon hanging heavy and bloated in the night sky. The wind had teeth. ‘No.’ He didn’t believe her. ‘I’ll drive you home.’ ‘I can manage,’ she said. Quietly. Firmly. She wouldn’t fight him. But she wouldn’t get in his car, either, wouldn’t buckle herself into his chariot. Sit across from him while they both pretended to listen to the radio and the growing consciousness of him and her crept up between them. ‘Be reasonable.’ His lips thinned. He’d always been fond of reasonable. She took her keys out, resolute,
and he flung up his hands. ‘Fine, have it your way.’ ‘I’ll be fine,’ she said. ‘Stay away from him. He’s bad news. If I hadn’t seen you…’ ‘My hero,’ she snapped. They had never been good at civility. They understood each other far too well for that. She’d seen him with blood on his hands and he’d seen her with blood on her face and they would never be friends. He shrugged. ‘Whatever.’ He didn’t walk her to the car, but he stood and watched as she unlocked the driver’s door and clambered in. Her hands were shaking. She drove with the radio off, the digital clock flashing as the minutes dribbled lazily by. It was a long drive home, but she was accustomed. ‘I’m fine,’ she told herself softly. ‘I’m fine.’ The roads were empty. I’m everyone’s friend. ‘Are you?’ she asked. There was a soft chuckle from the back seat. Her panicked eyes caught his in the rear vision mirror and she froze, hands whiteknuckled on the steering wheel. ‘Of course, my dear,’ he murmured. His voice was dark. ‘I’m irresistible.’ She looked down and her wrists were dappled black and yellow, dark claws sprouting from the ends of her fingers. Her eyes met his again and something shifted inside her again, but this time there were no cold hands to push it away. She wanted to scream but her throat was full of thorns. Who are you? She thought. His grin widened. ‘I’m just a stranger,’ he murmured. ‘Make of me what you will.’ His horns glistened gold in the streetlight, and the red on his plump lips was too crimson to be wine. ◊
words: rebecca mcewen art: rohan cheong
BREAK (BRACKETS FOR SUSAN) Deafness A map without names The ornament finally discarded Returns in multitudes Pieces of gum wrapped in paper: on my desk, by the bed, on the dresser Tabs from pill packets – empty Her name in faded print Warning: may cause constipation I have been wild and fractured by her love I let her lean too long on my honeycomb strength Stillness The realisation of her constant threat – her indifference A miracle of memory Tender and kind Flowers: roses, lilies, orchids, chrysanthemums Bloom beside our constant fucking (love making) (and die) Its expression (the death and the fucking) was a false promise Silence In the face of questions and contradictions I am made up of whatever she has cast aside Whatever I have taken up Taken in Distance is my only relation Even toast becomes a violation There is a limit to sharing the body; the body and blood Break bread A Eucharistic throwback Shutter speed desire – I’ve exposed myself too long and too often Haunted As I am too Fragmented (as I suspect you are) Wires left unchecked and exposed Sorrow and static She has become a fragment A slither missing from a wooden frame A waterlogged picture frame Nothing she has left me gives me any pleasure There is no comfort for me in her (or for you in your Irene) No solace in a napkin filled with one, two, four pieces of dry salt-white chewing gum Not now Struggle Of forgetting Of children Finger painting I cling to her as he did With a fierce and revolting love That still binds me With ribbons
by alison coppe
Daphne runs through the forest in search of solace. Alone by choice, she still feels his loss. Men do not mourn a relationship they chose to end; Daphne is not so callous. Each relationship ends for the same reason. Though men are fond of her, one even professed love, none fully accept her. They all ask her to change something, whether clothing, posture, mannerism or loyalty. His friends and interests are given preference. “We all compromise in a relationship,” preach her friends. When it comes to freedom, Daphne is unwilling to compromise. Reaching the forest, Daphne is greeted by beeches, chestnuts and poplars. Deciduous. They reflect her melancholy. Their leaves abandon them to face winter alone, suffering the harsh winds more without their protection. Branches whip through the air; boughs moan in anguish. They suffer through winter and are rewarded in spring, when foliage and blossoms return to decorate their ancient forms. Daphne’s spring has not arrived. Her tears fall unnoticed as she concentrates on the physical activity. The forest wants nothing from her, waiting patiently until she has time to visit. She confides her secrets without any fear of betrayal. She can be vulnerable here; the trees will not take advantage. Unlike her other friends,
who are erratic and controlled by emotion, the trees always greet her with a friendly rustle of their leaves. Their support is constant. They never hint at the inappropriateness of the hour. They never interrupt her, nor interject with their own woes. The damp earth is solid and reassuring underneath her feet. The turbulent sounds of the human world cannot penetrate the dense forest. Her body is framed by
DAPHNE words: nicola dowland
the outstretched branches of the beeches on each side of the path. In a chaotic life, the bending forest path is a constant. Daphne pretends that she will never leave. The path will continue to wind between the trees, inviting her to stay. Wind caresses the brown leaves above her head. The trees are whispering to her, their words
almost discernible. Birdcalls herald the setting sun before the orange light breaks through the forest canopy. Her heartbeat rises as she gains speed, keeping time with the birdsong. The air is warm and damp; it licks her skin as she runs. She sheds her clothes. It is more comfortable to run without those unnatural garments. Clothes only conceal beauty. The trees are not required to hide the patterns of their bark or the creases underneath their branches. It becomes harder to run; she feels weighed down by her shoes. She trips on a loose lace. They are large, clumsy things after all. The golden leaves which carpet the path provide her with ample cushioning. The path is safe and even. She discards her trainers. She is empowered as they drop to the earth. She runs faster down the golden path, keeping pace with the wind overhead. She reaches a clearing where sunlight makes the fallen leaves shine, illuminating the one evergreen in the forest: a laurel tree. She is home. The entire forest glows. Every imaginable shade of green, brown and gold surrounds her. Her tears are forgotten. Her human frailty no longer hinders her: she will never be tired again. Daphne walks deliberately into the clearing, where she is welcomed by her sister. There is a new evergreen bordering the path. ◊
words: tom sheldrick
CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURE: AT UNI
BUZZ. It’s 8am. Your alarm is going off. You’re happy that you didn’t die in your sleep but part of you wishes you did. 8am. Is it still dark out at 8am? I wouldn’t know. Go to (5)
Oh no you hit an artery. Well that was stupid. You bleed out and die right there in the room. Ironically the test is immediately cancelled and everyone except you gets to sit a supp. The end.
You’re eating plain toast. Why don’t you have any spreads? Maybe you prefer cereal. You can’t even remember. Ugh Adelaide’s public transport system. Maybe it’s better in the morning? If you choose to take the bus, go to (7). If you choose to drive, go to (11).
4. This tastes disgusting. The barman apologises and tells you that you’re the first person to ever order a light beer at the Unibar. He says that he panicked so he just mixed 30ml of Pale with 300ml of gravy. ‘This tastes worse than a Mayo burger’ are your last words. You died. The end. 5.
You’re dying on the inside, there should be a policy against tests at 9am. If you choose to get up, go to (13). If you choose to hit snooze, go to (8).
6. You’re devastated. You’re so devastated that you buy a burger from Mayo. Are you sure? Those things are poison! You start to eat the Mayo burger – you’ve obviously lost the will to live. Wow that was fast you literally die instantly of food poisoning in Mayo. Told you so. The end. 7.
You’re about to leave the house but you realise you’re naked. Haha, imagine what would’ve happened if you went naked. You get changed and make it to uni just in time to take the test. You didn’t study but thought you’d just wing it like usual. All 3 questions are gibberish to you. You need to get out of here. If you choose to just make shit up, go to (14). If you choose to injure yourself so you can leave and sit a medical supp, go to (2).
8. You hit snooze. The alarm will go off in 9 minutes. Ironically it won’t wake you up because you actually did die in your sleep this time. The end. 9. Hey your best friend just failed a test and is at the bar too! What are the odds? ‘Fuck our lives. Let’s just kill ourselves right now.’ You laugh this off. Funnily enough death is the last thing on your mind. If you choose to drink Pale Ale, go to (12). If you choose to drink a light beer, go to (4). 10. You’re making out with this creep in a cubicle and you’re grossing me out. Oh no, you feel sick. You turn to vomit in to the toilet and you fall in. The creep breaks out in to an evil laugh and presses flush. You’re flushed down the toilet. I thought that could only happen in cartoons. Who knew. Oh yeah, you died. The end. 11. You’re making great time – you’re on Greenhill road already. Why don’t you drive every day? You reach for your phone. OOPS! You forgot your phone. YOU FORGOT YOUR CLOTHES! You’re naked you idiot! You panic. Calm down. You’re not calm. You’re screaming. You swerve in to on-coming traffic and you die. Hahaha! Sorry I shouldn’t be laughing but it’s just so funny. You’re fully naked and you’ve just died. Oh boy I’m going to hell but you’d be laughing if it was me. I wish this was a movie. The end. 12. Your friend wants to go and see ‘Tree Of Life’ at the Palace Nova. If you choose to go with them, go to (15). If you choose to give in to the creep who wants to do it with you in the toilets, go to (10). 13. You get up and head to the kitchen. This is the first time you’ve had breakfast in months. Usually you’re up so late your first meal is lunch. If you choose to have toast, go to (3). If you choose to have cereal, go to (16). 14. Well that sucked but it’s 11am so the Unibar is open. Or maybe you could just go cry alone in Mayo. If you choose to go cry alone in Mayo, go to (6). If you choose to go drown your sorrows at the Unibar, go to (9). 15. Wow. You love Brad Pitt but this is terrible. How long have you been watching this outer space scene for? You literally die of boredom. Literally. The end. 16. SHIT! You forgot that you’re lactose intolerant. You ran to the toilet but you didn’t make it in time. Your pants are a mess but it’s fine you’re on the toilet now. You’re going to be here a few hours but at least you don’t have to sit the test. You’d rather be dead, you think, facetiously. The end.
STUFF YOU LIKE
(stuff you like)
golden gaytimes: gemma beale likes this.
pocket socks: bryn lewis likes this.
I’m going to level with you. I eat a lot of ice cream. So much so that I don’t really consider it a treat anymore and frequently seek out additional deserts to fill my ‘sweets stomach’ (not my mum’s finest parenting move). Obvious diet problems aside, the Golden Gaytime is my current go-to. It manages to retain the satisfying crunch of the Heaven Chunky Cookie without the I-ate-thattoo-fast-blues. It is so delicious I don’t even mind that it’s made by the same company that makes my tampons.
When some random visionary invented ‘Pocket Socks’, the world as we knew it changed forever. What was aimed at simply improving an everyday necessity, turned out to have massive worldwide implications. Pocket Socks marked the end of the tyranny of standard socks. Ok for those still scratching their heads, let me elaborate on the design. It’s a sock, but with a pocket = Pocket Sock. Genius. But who needs a sewn-in pocket at their ankle? You know, people who want extra security when carrying loose coins. Not to mention all the other practical applications... There’s an endless list, but I’m at word limit.
(stuff you like)
random acts of kindness: sophie grieger likes this. Do not underestimate the power of your actions. This one certainly made my day! Needing to relieve myself after a riveting Law seminar, I had removed my phone from the pocket of my jeans and placed it on the sanitary waste bin, in the second cubicle of the Law School Bathroom. Attempting to avoid the otherwise inevitable dunking of telephone into sewerage, I left it behind as I rushed to get studying in the Hub. A few metres away from the Law School I sensed that something was not right and returned in a flurry to find it gone! Needless to say, a wonderful stranger had collected my phone from its lost position and surrendered it to the front desk. A few moments of panic transformed instantly into relief and gratitude through the kindness of an unknown fellow student. Thankyou kind soul, whoever you are!
alleycat races: angus dickson likes this.
Y.O.L.O: genevieve novak likes this.
Despite only tasting the potentially blood infused adrenaline of Alleycat bike races once, I feel that they are something that should be embraced by the competitive and clinically insane alike.
Not many people wear ‘douchebag’ on their sleeve. But under my normal-person clothes, inside my bones, right next to the marrow, I believe in YOLO. Solo Alanis Morissette singalong into your winecrophone? YOLO. International booty call? YOLO. Publishing an in-depth discussion about how you enjoy performing fellatio? YOLO. It’s true. It’s fun. It’s (all) good. And if it’s good enough to be tattooed on Zac Efron’s body, it’s good enough for me. And it’s good enough for you. YOLO.
Weaving through peak-hour traffic, making a mockery of the internal combustion engine all while eating a banana and invading the privacy (and personal space) of randoms... what more could one want?
GET DEEP INTO ROMANCE ALICE BITMEAD milks the prosperous teat of erotica. Exams – the biannual shock of having to crack out a biro and use it – are lurking closer than a peeping tom at Windy Point, and after looking over your stoically untouched lecture pad and calculating your pass-rate probability, you’re getting a little hot around the collar. Either that, or you’re planning to spend the next three and a half months in your favourite pyjama-pant-andfour-year-old-year-twelve-jumper combo (‘leisure wear’, if you will), watching Ready, Steady, Cook and feel you’ll be unwilling to give up the lifestyle you’ve dubbed ‘freelance living’ come the new year. But how to actually make these lofty dreams into profitable reality, you ask! Well I come to you as a shining beacon of hope – there is another way. Yes, I’m talking about the scorching world of romance fiction. We all remember those well-thumbed paperbacks (emblazoned with the pirate more muscle than man, clutching a swooning, partially-clothed damsel to his rugged, rugged chest) piled up next to the TV Week and lanolin pump-bottle at Nan’s house. You know, the ones that always seem to fall open to the racy bits quite of their own volition. Well, over four of those bad boys got sold every second in 2008. 20% of all book sales are made up of these saucy reads. Seriously! There is clearly a metric shit-tonne to be made here! It’s time to put those Arts degrees to work, and I’m here to tell you how to do it. I might not have any tangible experience of writing a novel (my magnum opus was a
Mills and Boon that I had meticulously altered with the aid of white-out and a biro to tell the tale of a friend of mine that ran a very successful python farm. I’m expecting my Booker Prize nomination any day now) but seriously, how hard can it be? Step 1: Realising your character. This isn’t where you outline the many deep and meaningful facets of your Male and Female Lead - it means looking the part yourself. Who is going to want to publish ‘The Sheikh’s Virgin Bride’ (You can have that stellar title, but I want a dedication) if you don’t strike them as Barbara Cartland reincarnated? Time to stock up on poly-blend sateen kaftans in subtle, understated prints like ‘African safari’, or ‘Hawaiian dream’, and plenty of faux-onyx jewellery that ‘harnesses the healing power of natural magnetic forces’. Match these with a bad perm and some liberally applied drag make-up and you’ll be signed on faster than you can say ‘six-part desert romance epic’. Step 2: The beast itself. It’s time to crack open a fresh word document and get all up in your masterpiece’s grillz. Your characters should have the kind of unrealistic names dotted with at least one obvious spelling mistake that will render them forever unique in the eyes of your reader, eg ‘Rydge’, ‘Soyier’, ‘Kiffanie’ or ‘Mariya’. Then give them the sort of sexist, gender-stereotypical roles that will get any 40-something mother-of-two’s pulse racing. Favourite pairings include doctor/nurse, billionaire/poor, socially awkward secretary, or pirate/cabin boy. Don’t worry too much about character development or plot – you’ll want to smash this out in about 100 pages, so there’s no time for dicking around, because: Step 3: Sexii time ;) You’ll need to dedicate the bulk of your time and effort to this, as this is what the masses come for (ooh ar!) What you don’t want to do is draw from your own, goon-fuelled sexual experience. Hell, put anything you ever thought about sex and seduction back in its box. Instead, use choice words and phrases like ‘quivering member’, ‘unfurling flower of desire’ and ‘throbbing manhood’. I don’t like it any more than you do, but Nan’s copy of ‘His Virgin Secretary’ falls open at page 43 for a reason, so give the lady what she wants. Strategically place a bucket by your laptop and use the many dollars you make writing this to pay for the sex therapy you’ll need later. And voila! A masterpiece! Rope in any buff, Fabioesque friends you might have for some lurid cover art. Now go forth and prosper, my sons and daughters! Time to embrace the racy paperback for the cash cow that it is! ◊
MIDNIGHT MUSINGS DIAL 000 a lesson in street safety with OSHADHA ALUTHWALA. Weird things happen at my bus stop. I’ve been kissed by a strange middle-aged man, whistled at by a truck driver, and nearly run over by an obese elderly woman on an electric scooter. The most recent incident that occurred here is by far the strangest and most sinister: a domestic dispute between two hooded individuals that got quite violent. There I was, waiting for the bus, when I saw two people approach the bus shelter. It was when I realised that I could hear them arguing that I become a little uneasy; they were louder than the Doctor Who soundtrack I was listening to. From what I could gather, the woman had broken the man’s $200 phone, which he had ‘paid for with hard-earned money while she sat at home doing nothing’, and she wouldn’t give it back to him. After throwing several profanities her way, the man began to lunge at her and she screamed. He began to push her around, pull her to the ground, pin her down, all in an attempt to get his phone back. All this time, she kept screaming. I didn’t know what to do. The two other commuters who had been waiting just stood there and stared. I decided I should call the police, and had just begun to dial; but what if the hooded man realised what I was up to? He could come after me. I felt genuinely scared for my own safety, so I turned around and walked away. I felt terrible. I call myself a feminist, and I was absolutely incapable of helping that woman. It
was only after to speaking to my friends about the incident, and reading about Jill Meagher and the recent incidents of violence in North Adelaide that I realised almost nobody knows how deal with violent incidences such as these. I called the Police Call Centre to find out, and I ended up chatting to a lovely police officer — let’s call him Rob. When witnessing a situation such as the one I have described, the first thing to do is determine the degree of urgency for police intervention. Is anyone being physically harmed? Is there potential for anyone’s life to be put in danger? Are you witnessing a crime? Is the peace being disturbed? If so, this situation is deemed an emergency and 000 should be called immediately. If you are unsure whether the situation will escalate into any of the above situations, it is better to err on the side of caution and call 000, particularly when it comes to potentially violent incidents. The situation that I was in was a difficult one. I felt that, had I called the police, the violence between the man and the woman would then be directed at me; I was within hearing range. After talking to Rob on the phone, he told me that I was right in not calling from that distance. Most people carry knives with them, and putting myself in danger in order to help someone else was ‘not ideal’. His recommendations were as follows: either a) walk a safe distance away and call the police, OR b) call 000 in a way that is not visible to either of the hooded individuals, say nothing, and let the police handle the rest. According to Rob, option a) is much easier, as the location of a mobile phone call is not easy to trace. Should the people causing the trouble be given a warning before the police are called? His answer was simple: no. When people are involved in any kind of violent interaction and are threatened with the police, they will stop attacking each other and are likely to attack the person who issued the ‘threat’. In such a situation as this, the best thing to do is to walk to the nearest safe location and make the call. So, in summary, the next time you are in town, out an about, or in a secluded somewhat sinister suburban bus stop, and witness something that you think is even the slightest bit dangerous or criminal, walk to your nearest safe location and call 000. You’ve got nothing to lose. ◊
DIVERSIONS (answers on page 6)
with psychic psusan
Aries: You are now conscious of your breathing, and the presence of your tongue inside your mouth. You’re blinking manually, and at least one part of your body is itchy. Taurus: Getting more money may improve your financial situation. Try and make that happen, Taurus. Try. Gemini: No clouds in your storm, but there’s still one thing that’s got you trippin’. Boom, shake; shake-shake the room. Cancer: You should dress as pizza for Halloween because everybody wants a piece of you. HAHAHA WHAT A CHEESY PUN. Leo: You’ll pay for your lunch with cash, and when the cashier gives you your change and you take a few seconds to put it away in your wallet you’ll feel the world’s burning judgmental eyes upon you. Virgo: The talking fish from the Big Brother house will come to you in a dream. You must obey him. You must not tell the other housemates.
Libra: Try not to think about how your parents probably had Christmas sex many years ago. Scorpio: Prepare for when your kids ask where babies come from by hiding babies all over your house and when they ask, say ‘where DON’T they come from!’ and open all of your cabinets and all of the babies will just crawl out Sagittarius: Due to a widespread misunderstanding about a recent major humanitarian campaign, Ugandan rebel leader Joseph Kony will take 6% of the popular vote as a write-in candidate in this year’s US Presidential Elections. Capricorn: You walk past something magnetic, and it wipes every song from your iPod except Gangnam Style. You are unable to fix it. It is the only song you will ever listen to for the rest of your bleak life. Aquarius: Sometimes you’re clumsy and you drop things, like pencils or your hopes and dreams. You will continue to make bad life decisions, every time. Pisces: BUTTS. PSYCHIC PSUSAN OUT
TARGEDOKU As usual, find as many words as you can using the letters on the Sudoku grid. Words must be four letters or more and include the highlighted letter. Use the letters to solve the Sudoku (normal sudoku rules apply). Problem: there are repeated letters. There are three ‘O’s. Also, it’s an emotional nine letter phrase, this time. Not a word. What can I say; we’ll miss you guys.
LOOK AT QUIZ, MICHAEL! Now the story of a wealthy family who lost everything, and the one son who had no choice but to keep them all together. It’s Arrested Development. But which Bluth are you? 1. Your chosen breakfast is: a) a mayonegg b) vodka rocks and a piece of toast c) a key d) a banger in the mouth e) hot ham water
3. Your ideal date is: a) her? b) your husband’s twin c) hermano d) Carl Weathers e) a homeless guy
George Michael Bluth: There’s nothing more important to you than the sweet sweat of a hard day’s work at the banana stand. Nothing except trying to prove that you’re not related to your cousin Maeby so you guys can make out.
6. What’s your claim to fame? a) you were a never-nude Adam stoner Uncle Oscar. You’ll leave when you’re good and ready.
Gob Bluth: After getting expelled from the Alliance of Magicians for giving away the secret of your trick illusion, you haven’t got many friends. That probably explains why you spend so much time with the Hot Cops and Franklin Delano Bluth. Keep working on your crapability as a father to illegitimate son STEVE HOLT!.
Tobias Fünke: You’re not the greatest husband or dad, but highlights of your amateur
in the Living Classics pageant b) you have never made eye contact with a waiter c) you destroyed the family yacht at Spring Break d) the amount of research you put into your role as Frightened Inmate Number 2 e) you were chairperson of H.O.O.P (Hands Off Our Penises), an anti-circumcision charity 7. Your catch phrase is: a) ‘it’s a great day... for being sad’ b) *wink* c) ‘I’ve made a huge mistake’ d) ‘excuuuuuuuuuuuuse me!’ e) ‘great, so now we don’t have a car or a jet? Why don’t we just take an ad out in I’m Poor magazine?’
‘acting’ career include not getting the role of Dr. House, nannying your own child as Mrs. Featherbottom, co-chairing Gobias Industries, the infamous Fire Sale audition, moonlighting as an understudy for the Blue Man Group and penning your successful self-help book, The Man Inside Me.
Lindsay Bluth Fünke: You’re not getting much action in your open marriage (or outside of it, either), so you spend most of your time getting involved in charity and activism. Causes you’ve supported include the removal of the Ten Commandments from a courthouse and ‘no hair for oil’.
Lucille Bluth: Constantly in competition with Lucille ‘2’ Austero for the affections of youngest son Buster, you’re at your best when heavily liquored. You’re often seen sending adopted son Annyong off to see a star war, or trying to hide your affair with
5. What would you buy if you had access to the family checkbook? a) a jetpack b) a Korean orphan c) a segway d) blue body paint e) diamond cream
2. What is your day job? a) frozen banana salesman/ child b) U.S.O girl in the Vietnam War c) illusionist and president of the Alliance of Magicians d) analrapist e) activist and kleptomaniac
4. Your biggest secret is: a) you’re in love with your cousin b) you’ve won ‘cutest couple’ at Motherboy on several occasions c) you use a special tea to prevent premature ejaculation (‘tea for dong!’) d) you’re a never-nude e) you used to be in Dr. Fünke’s 100% Natural Good-Time Family-Band Solution
Heeeeeeyyyyyyy sexy lady. 2013 is going to be a big year. We will have survived the Mayan apocalypse, you’ll cast your vote in a federal election, the United Nations will celebrate the International Year of Quinoa, and we’ll be editing your On Dit. Of course, without you, we’ll have nothing to do and 50 blank pages a fortnight. Awkies! So here’s the deal. We want more of the passionate and honest personal stories that have featured in On Dit this year. We’ll be on the hunt for investigative pieces that get to the bottom of the big stories on campus and keep the proverbial bastards honest. We want to hear your take on stories in the news, and things that give you the blues. We want to talk to ordinary students doing extraordinary things. And extraordinary students doing ordinary things. And what about you creative types? Hearsay is coming back. It’ll be an anthology of student literary accomplishment, otherwise known as ‘fiction’. Hearsay will be your chance to have your finest creative work judged by those in the know with prizes and kudos up for grabs. More to come next year, but start working on that Masterchef erotic fiction epic now. On Dit is going to use the internet like a moody
teen. That is to say, lots. We’ll publish short pieces, correspondence, reviews, and anything else that doesn’t fit into the magazine on our website, and we’ll be tweeting like that bird that won’t shut the fuck up outside your bedroom window every morning. We’re on the lookout for regular (and irregular) contributors, and we need to hear from you. So fire up that modem, dial up, and visit lifeoncampus. org.au/ondit/contribute/ to register your interest in contributing to On Dit. A more complete list of what we’re after is online, and once we’ve heard from you we’ll be in touch for a chat. We want to hear your ideas, and help you turn them into something spesh. Sooooooooooo...yeah. Chuck us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org for extra deets or to learn more about quinoa. Big Loves, Stella, Casey and Holly.
THE FINAL ISSUE