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BEAST August 2018


Finding the Right Balance

























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elcome to the August 2018 edition of The Beast, the monthly magazine for Sydney’s Beaches of the East. We’re glad to report that winter is coming to an end soon, but one can hardly complain after kicking off July with a couple of consecutive 25-degree days. Even if it was just a day or two of warmth, it’s nice to break up the colder months with a bit of a balmy spell, especially if you can’t escape to Bali, Fiji or the European summer. We’ve been sitting by the fire, sipping mulled wine and tapping away on our laptops putting together another cockle-warming edition of The Beast. Highlights in this month’s magazine include the follow-up to Dan’s first article in his ‘A Long Holiday in Hotel Chernobyl’ short essay series about his ongoing battle with lymphoma, an in-depth look

8 The Beast | August 2018

into immunisation rates and the reasons why people are saying no to the needle in the east, an exposé about Waverley Council’s miserly decision to stop Gertrude & Alice Cafe Bookstore from leaving boxes of free books and magazines out the front of their iconic Hall Street shop for those who are battling to afford their bibliophilic fix, and a brief investigation into gun ownership on the mean streets of the Eastern Suburbs. Top this off with a compelling interview with controversial Australian neurosurgeon Charlie Teo and you’ve got one hell of a good magazine, if we do say so ourselves. Thanks to everyone who had a hand in getting this edition off to the printers. A lot of love from a lot of people goes into this publication, so we hope you enjoy it! Dan and James - Publishers

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August 2018 Issue 163 08 Welcome Note

38 Satire

64 Sexy Time

12 Pearls of Wisdom

41 Beastpops II

68 Enviro News

11 Contents

14 Monthly Mailbag 16 Local Chick 18 Local Bloke 20 Thumbs

20 Dogs of the Month 22 Local News 29 Beastpops

40 Marjorie's Musings 42 Calendar

43 Trade Directory 44 Interview

58 Unreliable Guide 60 Headnoise

62 Fish ‘n’ Tips 63 Tide Chart

Dawn Patrol at Bondi, by Steph Alexander. Instagram: @off_shore_bondi.

66 Sporting Life 70 Travel Bug

74 Local Photos

76 Food & Wine 80 Reviews

81 Trivial Trivia

82 Beardy From Hell 82 Trivia Solutions

Pigs grazing through plastic waste 30 kilometres southwest of Nairobi, Kenya.

THE END OF THE WORLD AS WE KNOW IT Words Pearl Bullivant Picture Anthony Sharpe


s the calendar rolled over to July 1, Pearl anxiously awaited the dystopia that would emerge from Woolworths’ and Coles’ ban on single-use plastic bags. I awaited a world where household rubbish would be discarded across the landscape and pensioners would be left homeless as their meagre income was sucked into a vacuum of 15-cent reusable plastic bags. I awaited the Contagion-style bacteria outbreak that was looming at the bottom of my hessian shopping bag. I waited and waited, for I had stupidly placed my faith in Sydney’s shock jocks. I had blindly followed the oracy of Andrew Bolt that foretold that the end of plastic bags would result in the end of the world and that I, Pearl Bullivant, would be chloroformed by my addiction to hipster calico bags. But nothing happened. And so, on July 2, I returned to my usual financial year-end exploit - helping my friends to avoid paying any tax - sad for myself and embarrassed for the shock jocks plying their trade of negativity and misery.

12 The Beast | August 2018

Australia’s reaction to the plastic bag ban has been bizarre. Across the land, supermarket staff members have been subjected to abuse and trolleys laden with groceries have been left abandoned in disgust at the checkout. Where has all this passion come from? Why hasn’t this angst been directed at the plethora of environmental and social ills that both tiers of government have imposed upon the nation? And who would have envisaged the pandemonium that has resulted from a simple ecological act that has turned back the hands of time? The populace has no issue with a federal government that insists on regressing to dirty coal, but regressing to Nanna’s string bag? That’s archaic. In NSW there is no formal ban on plastic bags, with Gladys putting her faith in the goodwill of Woolworths and Coles. Not even one-upmanship by the frontier states of WA and Queensland could threaten Gladys’ resolve in her refusal to force anything so nanny state-ish onto her populace, though she sees no issue with forcing overdevelopment onto those

who don’t want it. Banning plastic bags is more electorally sensitive than Sydney’s traffic, Badgerys Creek, fracking and mining the Blue Mountains, and Gladys knows it. Stockpiling plastic bags at home, whinging about the ‘challenges’ of remembering your own bags, threatening to boycott the monopoly supermarkets and having a bunch of consumer behaviourists weigh in on the debate (blaming our actions on a neurotypical response to change, for goodness’ sake) are not the reactions of a level-headed, mature society. Alas, there was no catastrophic extinction event on July 1, just a few abandoned trolleys laden with groceries and a temporary backflip by Woolworths and Coles. And while Ireland, France and Germany have banned plastic bags and fracking with complete ease, conservative Australia struggles to remember to put the green bags in the car boot. If it was up to Pearl, I’d be taking the Kenyan approach and locking plastic bag smugglers in jail. Happy shopping!

THE BEAST'S MONTHLY MAILBAG Words The People of the Eastern Suburbs PEARL ON POINT I laughed my head off when I read yet another insightful spray from Pearl (Getting to the Bottom of It, The Beast, July 2017). I could swear she was writing about one of my neighbours. Her accuracy is astonishing. Clearly I'm not the only Randwick resident suffering from this particular social group. Well done Pearl! John Randwick GET WELL SOON Hi James and Dan - Just wanted to let you know the July edition is really great! Dan, congrats on such a great article about your surgery and the upcoming chemo. I can imagine it's difficult to write about.Wishing you all the best with the chemo and hope you and your family stay strong through this. It's a horrible time but the positive is that you really see what's important in life. I lost my dad to stage four cancer in 2016. Unfortunately he didn't have the chemo straight after the surgery and it spread. He was a fighter and every case is different. Sounds like you've got a great support network around you and I wish you all the strength getting through this. I'm sure many people will resonate with your articles as I have. Kristy Coogee THE PEOPLE’S PRIVATE SCHOOLS Dear Editor - As a reader of your paper, I fail to understand the continuing attachment of most elite private schools to the MarxistLeninist theory of equal wages for all, when it applies to the ASEA rating of their school community,

14 The Beast | August 2018

for government funding purposes. In this, their attachment to the gospels of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Mao seem as strong as to those of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Surely these longstanding and strongly defended socialist principles would be better expressed by the sharing of their accumulated wealth, and by opening their lavish grounds and facilities for use by local students? I see much contradiction in the dialectic of Australia’s elite socialist private schools, such as why so many of these ostensibly religious institutions manage to graduate so few religious vocations and so many dedicated atheists each year, and why these ‘child centred’ learning institutions have such a record in ‘teaching’ serial child molestation, compared with the record of our public schools. Perhaps, Comrades, we need a Royal/Comintern Commission to straighten out this education sector’s ideological contradictions? Garry Earlwood AN ACCIDENT WAITING TO HAPPEN My family and I have moved to Coogee recently from Melbourne and unfortunately we feel very unsafe as pedestrians in the Coogee/ Randwick area. For one thing, I find it shocking that there are no school guards helping kids cross roads on the way to Coogee Public School. We have lived in many places in Australia and abroad, and everywhere this is standard (at least close to primary schools), just not here. I understand that this is a major expense, but the safety of our children is rather important, especially in light of the bad general crossing

options. While many people who live here in this area mainly rely on public transport and walking, pedestrians seem to count a lot less than the motorised citizens. Roundabouts in the area may seem a good idea to regulate traffic, however, approaching cars often speed up when there are no other cars in the roundabout and pedestrians are entirely ignored. This is even more pronounced when cars come down a hill (for example, roundabouts at the intersection of Mount Street and Coogee Bay Road, and Arden Street and Dolphin Street). I honestly fear for the life of my children crossing streets here, even though our way to school is mainly through small side streets. Given that Coogee Beach is a major attraction both for tourists and Sydneysiders alike, I think the situation for pedestrian visitors (and residents) could greatly benefit from improvements. Zebra crossings around all of the roundabouts, for example, would make a world of difference! Felix Coogee TRIPADVISOR RIVAL James, Dan, Nat - Thank you for the entertaining and unreliable guide to TripAdvisor (Unreliable Guide, The Beast, June 2017). I completely agree. TripAdvisor is the bane of the travel industry, allowing charlatan 'reviewers' to run riot with the threat of bad reviews in exchange for favours and discounts. I agree so much that I am launching a rival travel review site. Inspired by the world class beaches of the Eastern Suburbs (where I regularly take my three for the sea), 'Discoverati' will provide an alternative travel review platform that focuses on to what extent hotels, restaurants and activity providers are ecologically and socially responsible in conducting their business. I hope I can avoid falling in to the TripAdvisor trap by encouraging users to focus on what companies are doing right, rather than what they are doing wrong. We're still in development, but if any readers would like to join me I'd love to hear from them. Visit to find out more. John Bronte

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Palmer & Co in the city, Donny’s in Manly and Nola in Barangaroo. I like most genres of music, but I play Beyonce, Matt Corby and Florence and the Machine on repeat. Do you have a favourite sporting team? I’m not big into sport but the Roosters were the first NRL team I saw live so I tend to go for them. Who is your favourite person? My family, my amazing friends and a shout out to my partner, Greg. What do you get up to on the weekends? I love getting out into nature and going for walks, catching up with friends at bars and cafes, and having some quiet, relaxing time. Doing what she loves and doing it often.

LOCAL CHICK... KRISTY OLSEN FROM COOGEE Interview and Picture James Hutton


risty Olsen splits her time between the north and south sides, but likes to call Coogee home. She recently launched her interior styling business, KO Designer, specialising in residential renovations and interior design. She shares her local favourites with The Beast... How long have you lived here? I spend my time between Coogee and Crows Nest. I met my partner a year ago at Coogee Pavilion and he’s living in a great apartment overlooking Coogee Beach. Why do you live here? I love Coogee. It’s such a beautiful suburb, it’s not too busy and there are so many great bars, cafes, pools, and beaches, and the stunning Coogee to Bondi coastal walk. What's your favourite beach? I’d have to say Balmoral Beach as I've gone there the most. Coogee Beach is fun and has a community feel, and I’ve got family living in Freshwater so I love it there too.

16 The Beast | August 2018

What's your favourite eatery? A few of them are Café de France in Coogee, Bucket List in Bondi for lunch after a coastal walk, Icebergs for dinner is special and I’m still wanting to check out Fonda in Bondi. I worked on the new design for Pinocchio’s restaurant in The Juniors Kingsford and that’s just been renovated. Where do you like to have a drink? The Coogee Pavilion Rooftop and Little Jack Horner when they’ve got live music on. Best thing about the Eastern Suburbs? Definitely the coast; the walks are stunning. I love visiting Wylie’s Baths, going for a swim, coffee, lunch and lounging in the sun. Worst thing about the Eastern Suburbs? Parking in the middle of summer. What music are you into at the moment? I’m a huge fan of my talented brother who plays jazz at

What do you do for work? I’m an interior architect and started my business this year. I specialise in residential renovations and interior design for cafes, bars and restaurants. I’m also doing property staging and interior styling. You can check out my website,, and follow me on Instagram, @kodesigner. What's your favourite thing about work? I love meeting new clients and working with them to achieve their dream interiors. I’m a really visual and creative person and I love seeing the difference a finished design can make compared to the previous outdated interior. Do you have a favourite quote? I walked the Camino de Santiago last year with my sister and I love Paulo Coehlo’s quote: “We must never stop dreaming. Dreams provide nourishment for the soul, just as a meal does for the body." Any other words of wisdom for readers of The Beast? Do what you love and do it often; life can be short. It’s also my professional opinion that it’s worth getting an expert to discuss renovation plans, redecoration plans and property staging, as missing the mark can be expensive.


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August 2018 | The Beast 17

Who is your favourite person? My wife Angela is my favourite person. She makes me who I am. I also admire two sporting figures, being Greg Norman for his perseverance and tenacity over his career, and also Steven Bradbury who I always recall as the lesson to be in the final and you never know what will happen. What do you get up to on the weekends? With a young family my time is theirs on the weekend - soccer for my son, horses for my daughter, movies with the missus and a bit of gardening.

Do good work, have some fun.

LOCAL BLOKE... TREMAYNE WEST FROM RANDWICK Interview and Picture James Hutton andwick’s Tremayne West has lived in the area for over ten years and recently set up his own insurance advisory, It’s Insured, in Bondi Junction. He shares his local favourites with The Beast...


and Crust Pizza (a bit of a theme here I think).

How long have you lived here? I opened the office at Bondi Junction in January 2017 and I have lived in Randwick since 2006.

Best thing about the Eastern Suburbs? Everything is here for a family to enjoy and be in and around.

Why do you live here? Randwick is the centre of the Eastern Suburbs. It’s quick to the beaches, quick to the city, great for the horses and footy, and there’s good food at the Junction or down at Kensington.

Worst thing about the Eastern Suburbs? Traffic, traffic, traffic! Oh, and there are no parking spots.

What's your favourite beach? Clovelly. It’s safe for the kids, there’s the deep water for me, and snorkelling around to Gordons Bay is superb. What's your favourite eatery? Any great Thai restaurant, Bondi Pizza 18 The Beast | August 2018

Where do you like to have a drink? The Royal at Randwick and the Nelson in the Junction.

Do you have a favourite sporting team? The Waratahs, Sydney FC, the Roosters and the Swans, and all at the SFS/SCG! What music are you into at the moment? I’ve refound jazz. When I was young I was a great blues fan, but I’ve recently been lured by some really great jazz. I guess I’m getting older.

What do you do for work? I’m an insurance advisor. I help people and businesses find the right policy for their needs and advise appropriately. I recently made the decision to leave the corporate world and establish my own business to advise local people and business owners about risk and how to manage it. Community and family are the most important things and supporting them is equally important. What's your favourite thing about work? The most rewarding thing is having a client say a sincere ‘thank you’. Insurance is complex and tricky; insurance companies work for their shareholders and not the policyholders. Cutting out their traps and advising the pros and cons of multiple policies to a client is what we do at the start, and then we make sure our clients get paid what they deserve when there is a claim, and that’s where we add real value. Do you have a favourite quote? My favourite quote is on the wall in our office: “Do good work, have some fun!” Any other words of wisdom for readers of The Beast? Life is what we live so get out there and do it. Also, speak to an insurance broker before you buy your next policy. It may save you hundreds of thousands of dollars when a big claim arises.



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JET Age 7 months Sex Male Breed Kelpie X Weight 12.2kg Jet is a sweet, gentle little puppy. He walks on loose lead at a good pace. Jet is affectionate and playful with other dogs and he also loves children. He enjoys having his belly rubbed and is happy to be picked up by strangers. He has a short coat that doesn't require much work. Jet comes desexed, C5 vaccinated, heartworm free and microchipped. Also included for the love and wellbeing of Jet is a free health and wellness voucher with the Doggie Rescue vet. For more details, please call Doggie Rescue on 9486 3133, or email

A wonderful display of sportsmanship.

THUMBS UP ALFIE LANGER Seeing Allan Langer helping Blues captain Boyd Cordner off the field in the second State of Origin clash restored our faith in humanity (or rugby league players, at least). SINGLE USE PLASTIC BAN It’s great to see local councils banning single use plastics and it is also great to see the big supermarkets (slowly) following suit. Our marine life will be thankful. POSITIVE FEEDBACK Thanks to all our awesome readers who sent through so many lovely emails regarding Dan’s recent health battles. It’s nice to feel all the love. LIBRARIES In this day and age these institutions are about so much more than just borrowing books, so don’t be scared to find your inner nerd.

THUMBS DOWN PLASTIC BAN BACKDOWN Pissweak effort from the big supermarkets that briefly backed down on the ban. Hopefully they’ve sorted it out by the time you read this! WORLD CUP DROWZINESS The World Cup was bloody awesome, but we’re happy we won’t have to deal with more sleep deprivation this month. FLATULENCE Letting one rip is a great joy, but there’s nothing nice about having a stomach so full of gas you feel like you’re about to explode. 20 The Beast | August 2018

VINCE Age 2 years Sex Male Breed Shepherd X Jack Russell Weight 13.7kg Vince is a sweet, friendly and obedient boy. He walks well on lead and is affectionate and attentive towards people. He enjoys getting out and burning some energy, but he's not one of those annoying f*ckers that can't sit still for more than five seconds. He has a short coat that is easy to look after. Vince comes desexed, C5 vaccinated, heartworm free and microchipped. Also included for the love and wellbeing of Vince is a free health and wellness voucher with the Doggie Rescue vet. For more details, please call Doggie Rescue on 9486 3133, or email

DINO Age 3 years Sex Male Breed Cattle X Koolie Weight 26kg Dino is a fun-loving, easy-going boy. He's always up for some exercise and enjoys walking on a loose lead, choosing to ignore passing cars and other dogs. Dino likes cuddles and even enjoys sitting in people's laps. He is well-behaved and sits on command. He has a short coat that's easy to care for. Dino comes desexed, C5 vaccinated, heartworm free and microchipped. Also included for the love and wellbeing of Dino is a free health and wellness voucher with the Doggie Rescue vet. For more details, please call Doggie Rescue on 9486 3133, or email

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Hello darkness, my old friend...

WELCOME TO HOTEL CHERNOBYL Words Dan Hutton Pictures James Hutton


hen I first looked at my chemo protocol I thought there must’ve been an error in the printout. The chemotherapy I‘d heard about in the past lasted about six cycles, with a cycle consisting of a dose of chemo on the first day and then a few weeks of recovery in between each dose. What I was confronted with was far more substantial. I had been told that given my relatively youthful age the best course of action for my particular form of lymphoma was to undergo what is essentially a paediatric chemo regimen. Kids can tolerate greater doses of the cytotoxic drugs over longer periods than those over a certain age. At 36 and reasonably fit, the doctors believed I was just young enough and strong enough to cop it on the chin; much older and they would’ve had to have gone easier on me, but then my prognosis wouldn’t have been so positive. Rather than facing the usual several cycles of chemo, I was to start with a 30-day ‘intensive induction’, followed by six blocks of consolidation therapy, a 22-day delayed 22 The Beast | August 2018

intensification, then another three blocks of consolidation. Each of the consolidation blocks involved two to three days of treatment and a hospital stay of five days to a week, depending on blood results. I’d get a couple of weeks off between each block, and, all going to plan, I’d then start two years of maintenance therapy - all up, nearly three years of chemotherapy. It’s worth noting here that I have two kids, one of whom turned four a fortnight before my chemotherapy began and the other who was yet to celebrate her first birthday (a milestone that I was only able to enjoy via Facetime thanks to a low white blood cell count on my behalf and a nasty little cough on hers). My mind was plagued with thoughts of my children growing up without a father, and how my partner, Georgie, would cope as a single mother (which was probably giving my parenting far too much credit, as she does the bulk of the work anyway!). That said, with less than a month to recover from my median sternotomy, I didn’t really have a hell of a lot of time to dwell on

what lay before me. When I went back in to hospital my physical wounds had healed but my mental and emotional trauma was still very much present. Everyone was telling me to stay positive, but it was impossible to hide the fact that I was shit scared. The word ‘chemotherapy’ itself is enough to send chills down one’s spine. It evokes images of hairless humans who’ve lost the colour from their skin and the life from their eyes; bags of bones attached to metal trolleys from which bulging vessels of who knows what hang menacingly. And vomiting. Lots of vomiting. My initial farewell to Georgie felt worse than a break-up. I was on the verge of tears when I got out of the car and made my way to the automatic doors at the front of the hospital. She was putting on a brave face and I was determined not to let her see me cry or witness the fear in my eyes. Stupidly I turned back around to give her a final wave goodbye and then it all suddenly hit home. I raced back to the car, collapsed into Georgie’s arms and we completely lost our collective shit. I don’t think I’ve wept so unreservedly since I was a child. My first night on Level 9 South, St Vincent’s Hospital’s haematology ward (or Hotel Chernobyl as I affectionately dubbed it), was quite a lonely one. I was the only patient in a room that would normally be filled with four sick humans, as the ward was on the verge of undergoing a major renovation and they were beginning to shift beds and their occupants down to Level 8 North, where the haematology ward would share space with the drug and alcohol ward until the renovations upstairs were complete. In a strange way the timing of my diagnosis worked in my favour as my first intensive month of chemo took place before the ward shifted. Being on death’s door with an irrational and unpredictable patient in the throes of addiction in the bed next to you is certainly not ideal, as I would find out later in my chemo journey. ►



Thankfully I didn’t spend the whole first month on my own, and was joined at various times by, among others, a salt of the earth chap from Coolamon named Jimmy who had the nurses wrapped around his little finger, a federal politician who regularly wandered the ward yarning to his ‘constituents’, and a professional Santa Claus who was trying to arrange his chemo treatments around Christmas for fear that his bushy white beard and mane would fall out and he wouldn’t be able to work. Before I could receive any chemotherapy drugs I needed to be fitted with a central line - a catheter inserted into the jugular vein and threaded down towards the heart. It was through this line that I would receive most of my chemotherapy, anti-nausea medications and any antibiotics I should need if I contracted an infection. The nurses also took blood from the line each morning. While the lumens attached to the line dangled from my neck like a misplaced earring, it wasn’t particularly uncomfortable, though it did make showering a bit of a nightmare as it had to be kept dry. Treatment started the next morning. I was loaded up with a cocktail of prednisone (a steroid), vincristine, daunorubicin, cyclophosphamide, and intrathecal methotrexate and cytarabine over the first few days. The intrathecal medications are delivered via a lumbar puncture, a not particularly pleasant process whereby they slot a fine needle in between your lower vertebra and into the spinal column, from which they remove some spinal fluid and replace it with the medications. The worst part of this is usually the injection of local anaesthetic that precedes the lumbar puncture, but on occasion they miss the gap between verterbra and hit bone, which, despite the aid of said anaesthetic, still hurts like buggery. Between days 3 and 8 I had no chemotherapy. I was just lying around waiting for the ill effects to kick in and being fed a cocktail of 24 The Beast | August 2018

other medications to prevent viral, bacterial and fungal infections, as well as indigestion, constipation and nausea. I was downing more pills on a daily basis than your average gurner would get through in a weekend at Defqon. Day 8 was my first encounter with a drug that would essentially become my arch nemesis and really define my chemotherapy experience. L-asparaginase, as it is known, is both the spawn of god and the devil in equal measure. Not only was it the most effective medication in treating my illness, it also made me feel like absolute dog shit, stripped me down to a 63-kilogram shadow of my former self and took me as close to death as I’d ever care to go. I faced eight infusions of this nasty substance in my first 30 days of treatment, and many more throughout the rest of my chemo protocol. At times I’m surprised I’m actually still here to tell the tale.

Okay, just a little pin-prick. That said, it took the best part of two weeks for the nausea to really settle in, and by the time it arrived no amount of antiemetics could keep it at bay. The best thing I could hope for each day was that the drugs would send me off to sleep and that when I woke up several hours would’ve passed and I’d be feeling slightly less unpleasant. Unfortunately, I’d usually be woken up every few hours by a nurse wanting to do my observations and I’d struggle to find slumber again until the next dose of anti-nausea medication was due. During this stage of the chemo I found that most food was unpalatable. I did manage to keep down a Vacanza pizza every now

and again, and had the occasional hankering for pork and chive dumplings, but aside from that my diet consisted mainly of bananas, Smith’s crisps and chocolate protein drinks. As if the chemotherapy and all its lovely side effects weren’t enough, about three weeks into this first month I came down with a temperature and was promptly put on a heavy dose of broadspectrum antibiotics. With my immune system in tatters by this stage, even a minor infection could prove fatal. I don’t remember much of the week that followed. I’m still unsure if it’s a case of my brain or the chemo drugs erasing the memory of some of the more unbearable times that month. At the end of the first torturous 30-odd days of treatment I was finally discharged from hospital and had my second PET scan. My first took place after my median sternotomy operation, and it lit up like a Christmas tree. Call me humbug, but after the month of discomfort I’d endured I wasn’t feeling particularly festive while awaiting the results of scan number two. I was as anxious as heck, but somehow managed to fall asleep on the in-laws’ Darlinghurst couch and miss phone calls from the hospital, Georgie and my brother. When I returned Georgie’s call she told me that I needed to call the hospital immediately, but she gave nothing away in the tone of her voice regarding the result. I promptly dialled the number for St Vincent’s and asked to be put through to the haematology registrar. Jamie, the young registrar who was on duty at the time and one of a team of doctors who had looked after me during my month-long admission, could not contain his excitement. The scans showed a complete metabolic response. I was in remission... This is part two of a short essay titled ‘A Long Holiday in Hotel Chernobyl’. Tune in next month for the third and final part of the series.


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BITS AND PIECES FROM AROUND THE BEACHES Words Lisa Anderson Picture Sebastian Elmaloglou Instagram @intepic UNDERWATER DANCE Bondi surf/lifestyle photography website Aquabumps has collaborated with iconic fashion designer Dion Lee and the Australian Ballet on an underwater photo shoot. Dancers draped in Lee’s bespoke designs were choreographed into weightless poses by Australian Ballet Artistic Director, David McAllister. The pool was blacked out and lit from above to create the feeling of an abyss underwater. The project was supported by Aquabumps’ partners at Dropbox Paper. 12 limited edition artworks are launching on August 1 at the Aquabumps Gallery in Bondi, with 50 per cent of all profits going to the Australian Ballet. To find out more, visit

months, live in the Sydney metropolitan area and you are interested in participating in a trial to determine if these treatments are effective, please contact the researchers by emailing For more information, visit www.

a meeting, guest speaker and an optional lunch. If you are looking to increase your network of friends while supporting the work of The Smith Family and your community, give them a call on either 93573448 or 0422922095, or email

GET FIRE PITTED THIS WINTER As the longer evenings draw in, you can still enjoy your garden year round with an outdoor fire pit from Glow. Offering 12 different designs to suit every backyard style, there’s sure to be one to keep you warm this winter. The Glow range is available exclusively through Bunnings Warehouse stores nationwide. To find out more about the range, visit

SORT OUT YOUR BACK PAIN Neuroscience research has shown there are changes in the brain when someone has pain for a long period of time. It is these changes that could be making recovery from low back pain slower and more difficult. Using this knowledge of the brain and how it changes with pain, researchers at NeuRA have developed two new treatment programs for persistent low back pain. If you are aged between 18 and 70, have had low back pain for longer than three

A ROOM WITH A VIEW CLUB Looking for a way to give back to the community? Always wanted to join a group of like-minded women? Want to help disadvantaged Australian children? Why not join VIEW, which stands for Voice, Interest & Education of Women, a valued part of The Smith Family. There are 350 VIEW Clubs across Australia. The Woollahra VIEW Club gathers on the fourth Wednesday of the month at the Gaden Café and Community Centre in Woollahra at 10am for

COUNCIL DOUBLES DOWN ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE Randwick Council staff members experiencing family and domestic violence will be able to access extra leave, additional support and flexible work options as part of a new Family & Domestic Violence Policy recently adopted by Council. The new policy is about supporting women and families at times of crisis and helping them retain their job and income. Between 2016 and 2017 there were 373 reports made to police of women or children suffering at the hands of another person in Randwick City. The move follows a recent Australianfirst initiative by the council to allocate some of its affordable housing to help local women and children break the cycle of domestic violence. Council also recently resolved to provide annual funding for the next five years for specialist outreach workers targeting domestic violence to work three days a week within Randwick City.

Happy hump day.

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August 2018 | The Beast 27

You won’t find many anti-vaxxers in Africa.

PARENTS PUTTING CHILDREN AT RISK JUST TO ‘FIT IN’ Words Siriol Dafydd Picture Andrew Wakefield


arlier this year, a study by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare revealed that some of Sydney’s wealthiest suburbs had the worst levels of child vaccinations across the country. While the overall numbers are on the rise across Australia, some idiots - sorry, I mean parents - are still flat-out refusing to properly immunise their children for the pettiest of reasons. The data, released in March this year, revealed that 93.5 per cent of all children aged five across the country were fully immunised in 2016-2017. It also revealed that all Primary Health Network areas achieved an immunisation rate of 90 per cent or above. Of the primary health network areas listed in the report, Western NSW tops the chart with 96 per cent of five year-olds, 93 per cent of two year-olds and 95.3 per cent of one year-olds fully immunised in 2016-2017. Sadly, some of Sydney’s more affluent areas featured towards the bottom of the list, with Northern

28 The Beast | August 2018

Sydney having 91.1 per cent of five year-olds, 89 per cent of two year-olds and 93.4 per cent of one year-olds fully immunised. Central and Eastern Sydney had similar stats with 92 per cent of five year-olds, 89.1 per cent of two year-olds and 92.9 per cent of one year-olds fully immunised. These might all seem like decent enough percentages, but according to the report this leaves 4,726 children in the Central and Eastern Sydney area alone without proper immunisation in 2016-2017. Immunisation is proven to be a safe and effective way of reducing the spread of vaccine-preventable diseases in the community. It protects individuals against potentially serious health problems and reduces the risk of outbreaks of serious diseases. The government has invested millions in awareness and education campaigns regarding immunisation and its benefits. So why are some parents still resisting? Though I don’t personally agree, I understand the concern of some

parents regarding the potential complications of immunisations. Reports that vaccines cause autism have been widely discredited and the odds of a child having a severe allergic reaction or experiencing seizures or encephalitis are apparently one in a million. That said, I appreciate that even with such slim odds the overwhelming and primal urge to protect your infant child could cause you to at least think about the slightest hint of risk before jabbing a needle in their arm. However, a study by the University of Western Australia published by the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health in May revealed that for many people the decision to vaccinate their children is largely influenced by their social networks. The researchers, who interviewed parents from two Australian locations with low vaccination rates - Fremantle in WA, and particular postcodes in Adelaide - found that parents either felt

marginalised or validated within their communities depending on their social circle’s view on vaccinations. So basically what we are talking about here is peer pressure. The very same thing that made you try a ciggie for the first time behind the dunnies at school (before immediately and secretly vomiting in your mouth) is apparently what’s causing grown adults to prevent their children from receiving proper immunisation. “What our study really drew out was how the sociality of vaccine questioning and refusal reflects a certain stage of life where new parents are making new friends,” said Dr Katie Attwell from UWA’s School of Social Science. “They don’t want to risk social criticism when they are seeking acceptance.” If this is indeed the case in the Eastern Suburbs, perhaps the amendment to the Public Health Act 2010 introduced in January 2018 will significantly raise the number of children fully immunised in the area. As parents can no longer enrol their children in childcare unless they are fully immunised, uber-rich yummy mummies across the east will likely abandon their apparent objections and immediately drop their fully immunised kids off with the hired help - because principles are one thing, but missing that morning yoga class and the subsequent coffee with the other local WAGs could really affect your social standing! At the end of the day, if you’ve done your research and you still seriously object to the idea of immunisation because of religious beliefs or genuine medical concerns, then good for you - stick to your guns. Despite what I or anybody else thinks, it is ultimately your choice. But if you don’t have the scientific data to back it up, don’t blindly risk your kid’s health just because Susie McSnottybitch from the tennis club told you to. You have a child, so you’re officially too old to secretly vomit in your mouth in order to make friends.


Ryan SUMMER BAY I’m happy with compulsory immunisation in childcare centres. The risks of anything negative happening from immunisation are less than the chances of an unvaccinated child being struck by a preventable illness. The anti-vaccination movement is a bit irresponsible. I understand that people may want to go down that ‘natural’ path, but I’d be kicking myself if something happened to one of my kids that I could have prevented.

Carla RANDWICK I think immunisation for kids should be compulsory. I don’t understand the point of the anti-vaccine movement. Why would you want to risk disease spreading throughout our community, especially amongst our vulnerable children? It’s not only selfish, it’s stupid and potentially very dangerous. I don’t think I’d ever want to send my kids to a childcare centre that allowed unvaccinated children to attend.

Gerry WAVERLEY I think parents should have the right to make a choice. I don’t like the idea of parents being forced to medicate their children, but parents have to accept certain consequences if their child is not immunised so they don’t put other children at risk. I wouldn’t want my kids going to childcare with kids who haven’t been immunised. It’s difficult to know at what point ignoring commonly accepted medical advice becomes child neglect. June 2018 | The Beast 29

Leave our Jane alone.

COUNCIL THROWS THE BOOK AT JANE Words Eve Matheson Picture Jordan Turner


ertrude & Alice Café Bookstore is a Bondi institution. Led by local owner Jane Turner, the cozy, welcoming spot is wellknown for its delicious coffee, famous lentil soup, lovely staff and, last but not least, its curbside box of free books. So imagine Ms. Turner’s surprise when in May a representative from Council came into her shop and informed her that, after 17 years of doing so, she was no longer permitted to leave free books on the curb for members of the Bondi community. The majority of the books that end up in the curbside boxes are donations, most often books that charity shops won’t accept because of yellowed or dog-eared pages. Gertrude & Alice is the last stop for unwanted books before being tossed into landfill, and through accepting donated books and offering them to the community free of charge, Ms. Turner has created a valuable recycling system. She is committed to ensuring a “second life” for the donated books and her efforts are extremely popular with Bondi bookworms, environmentalists, backpackers and children alike. Now, this unique system of thoughtful recycling is under threat from Waverley Council.

30 The Beast | August 2018

Interestingly, this is not Ms. Turner’s first encounter of this nature with Council. The café and bookshop used to house a $1 book stand outside its entrance but had to remove it when, in similar fashion, Council informed Jane that she would be fined if she did not. On that occasion Ms. Turner, acknowledging that it is illegal to retail on the street without proper permission, removed the stand. So if Ms. Turner has previously been very understanding about Council’s role as enforcers in the community, why is this situation any different? Well, according to her it is their approach that she takes issue with. In describing the way in which she was informed that she would be fined for her free books, Ms. Turner says, “They just walked in, said don’t do it again, and walked out.” Council’s unwillingness to have a legitimate conversation to explain the situation in full and discuss possible alternatives represents the police-state mentality that many, including Ms. Turner, fear is beginning to take over the community. Additionally, their handling of the situation indicates that they lack understanding when it comes to the Bondi community,

which over the years has greatly benefited from Gertrude & Alice’s free books. Unfortunately, as of right now Ms. Turner has had to tell her customers that Gertrude & Alice can no longer accept donations. Thankfully Ms. Turner has a plan, and if she is unable to reverse the council’s decision she at least hopes to raise awareness and protect other local businesses from their inconsiderate treatment. As anyone who knows anything about Gertrude & Alice is well aware, if there’s one thing Ms. Turner is good at it’s raising awareness. She plans to start a social media campaign and hopes to start a petition that will surely amass a great number of signatures. When Ms. Turner mentioned to The Beast that she was planning on having a petition available for signing, a woman who was sharing our communal table in the shop piped up. She passionately asserted that through pure misunderstanding of the Bondi community, Waverley Council has made a grave mistake in going up against one of the most valued institutions in the area. This particular customer hopes that through Gertrude & Alice’s efforts to raise awareness, the council will recognise Ms. Turner’s organic and unspoken power as a community leader and will realise how out of touch they are with the people they are supposed to represent. Ms. Turner is not trying to stir up unnecessary trouble, but she is willing to take a stand for the greater good of the Bondi community. At the close of our conversation with her, she summed up her attitude: “Am I going to get offside with Council? Quite possibly, but I can’t just sit quietly on the sidelines and accept this decision when it’s about recycling, and this is something that the council pride themselves on.” To fight the good fight and help Ms. Turner and the Bondi community as a whole, look out for forthcoming information regarding the petition on Gertrude & Alice’s social media accounts.

“But I need to protect my family...”

WELCOME TO THE GUN SHOW Words Siriol Dafydd Picture Kevin Peter Hall


henever a terrorist or mentally ill individual (depending, of course, on their ethnic origin) commits yet another mass shooting in America, a spotlight shines on Australia. Every time America mourns and the gun control debate rears its ugly head to absolutely no effect whatsoever, memes galore refer to the land down under as the perfect example of how a government should react to and regulate gun violence. For those of you unfamiliar with Aussie history (presumably backpackers), in the wake of the Port Arthur massacre in 1996, which killed 35 people, the National Firearms Agreement was passed by all Australian state governments. This agreement put strict restrictions on the ownership of firearms nationwide. Gun owners today have to meet standard licensing and permit criteria, attend a safety course, be subject to regular inspections and follow strict rules regarding the storage of their firearm before they can own one. 32 The Beast | August 2018

In order to obtain a firearm licence, applicants need to have proof of a genuine reason for owning a firearm. And in case you were wondering, ‘self-defence’ is not considered a good enough reason. Amen to that. So as far as social media is concerned, Australia is the Beyoncé of gun control. We can do no wrong. But beyond the hair extensions and glitter - or the far less glamorous legislation, politics and PR - what is the real situation with firearms in Australia? Despite the strict laws and apparent national distaste for guns, you might be surprised to know how many registered firearms are in your local area. According to, there were 810,023 registered firearms in NSW as of March last year, with over 100 postcodes home to more than 2,000 registered firearms and six postcodes with in excess of 10,000. In Bondi Beach, North Bondi and Tamarama there were 97 registered gun owners as of March 2017. In Bondi Junction

and Queens Park there were 43 registered firearm owners, and in Bronte and Waverley there were 41. There were 138 registered in the Randwick and Clovelly areas, and 102 in Coogee and South Coogee. Bellevue Hill had 54 whilst Maroubra had 248. That’s a total of 723 registered gun owners in the very same area that The Beast is distributed in monthly. The number of individual guns registered in this area is an astounding 3,182, making it an average of 4.4 guns owned by each registered owner. Meanwhile, Maroubra, an area known for its gang culture, had a whopping 1,152 registered guns according to the website. So how strict can our gun laws really be? And how easy is it to actually obtain a firearm licence? Given that the majority of the list of ‘genuine reasons’ cited mostly consist of rural activities such as animal welfare, pest control and primary production, it’s hard to imagine why so many guns could be present in an urban area like the Eastern Suburbs. Of course many of these gun owners could belong to target shooting clubs, recreational hunting clubs or firearms collectors societies, which are also considered genuine reasons. But again, could this reasonably and genuinely account for the 3,000-plus guns registered to the area or are the permit applications easier to fudge than we might think? Yes, we are light-years ahead of the United States (I mean, who isn’t these days?) in terms of our gun control, but is there more that can be done? Do these laws need to be tightened further? Global news and social media would have us believe that gun violence is virtually non-existent in Australia. But after seven people, including four children, died at the hand of legally registered firearms in Margaret River just a few months ago and two teenagers were shot dead in Pennant Hills last month, can we really keep pretending that everything is hunky dory or is it time to revisit our gun laws?


Sunday 16 September Randwick Community Centre 9.30am-3pm


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MORE BITS AND PIECES FROM AROUND THE BEACHES Words Lisa Anderson Picture Josie Luisi Instagram @missjosieluisi ARE YOU A TRADIE NEEDING MORE SPACE? Enterprise Industrial Estate (EIE) Pagewood is currently under construction opposite the new Bunnings Eastgardens. The development comprises 52 small warehouse units perfect for trade users and other businesses needing that extra space and security. All units offer a high clearance warehouse, designated parking and most have small mezzanine office areas. Units start from just $599,000 ex GST. For further details, please visit pagewood. BUDGET BRINGS NEW INITIATIVES, HIGHER RATES Randwick Council’s 2018-19 Budget is set to deliver a sizable $70 million in new community initiatives, programs and activities. This is the first year of Council’s Our Community Our Future Special Rate Variation program, which was widely consulted with the community and approved by the Independent Pricing & Regulatory Tribunal in May 2018. Highlights of the budget include 4.9km of road repaving works, 3km of new and upgraded footpaths, a new indoor sports

The Bondi Eye.

and gymnastics centre, goal posts and fencing at Heffron Park, playground upgrades in La Perouse, Kensington, Coogee and Maroubra, public Wi-Fi, anti-terrorism works, stormwater harvesting at Maroubra Beach, a Coastal Walkway extension around Randwick’s golf courses, and an extension of the boardwalk at Randwick Environment Park. Residential rates increase on average by 5.52 per cent in 2018-19, which for the average ratepayer paying about $1,223 a year is an increase of $64. The domestic waste charge, which covers the cost of collecting rubbish, recycling, green waste and providing four clean-up services per household per year will increase by $14 to $568. NEW COURSES AT CODE CAMP The clever kids from Code Camp have been really busy coming up with new programs and workshops for kids to do at school (as part of the new curriculum) as well as in the school holidays. For the first time ever, Code Camp will be running a virtual reality camp where kids can create their own virtual reality game that can be viewed through VR headsets. They’ll also be offering a 3D animation

workshop, in which kids as young as eight years old will be taught how to use modelling software to create their own 3D character. To find out more about Code Camp, visit SAY GOODBYE TO SINGLE USE PLASTICS As of July 1 this year, all single use plastics such as plastic bags, drink bottles and drinking straws have been banned from Randwick City Council operations and events. The decision is inline with a worldwide movement to decrease plastic usage to reduce plastics pollution and micro plastics entering the food stream. In addition to banning single use plastics as part of Council operations, organisers of Council-supported events, festivals and major activities will also be required to shun single use plastics from January 1, 2019 (though exemptions will apply for emergency situations where single use bottled water may be required because of excessive temperatures). Randwick Council will also develop a waste education program to assist and encourage local businesses and community groups to reduce single use plastics. Nice work, Randwick!

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August 2018 | The Beast 35

Is there life on Mars?

MOVING TO ANOTHER PLANET Words Con Gestion Picture David Bowie


lanet Earth is going through a difficult time - human population numbers are immense, the atmosphere is warming from manmade activities, ecological systems of forests, plains and oceans are groaning from exploitation. There is a push for greener pastures. Could the answer to these problems be another planet? To provide some context, when Australia was settled by the British in 1788 there were maybe 750,000 Aborigines living here sustainably and peacefully, as they had been for around 60,000 years. The world population then was approximately one billion. Today Australia has some 24 million people and the Earth boasts 7.6 billion. There is no evidence that any of this explosive growth is sustainable. Quite the opposite, in fact. So what to do with this groaning planet? Leaving is one option. The most wealthy, technologically advanced nation on Earth, the USA,

36 The Beast | August 2018

is outsourcing its space exploration to the private sector. Margaret Thatcher would be pleased. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has warned of the threats to the planet from global warming and has embraced private partners to advance its mission through its infrastructure, knowledge and funding. There is a new breed of explorers, entrepreneurs and innovators seeking to collapse air travel time around the globe to a few hours, maybe even minutes. Richard Branson of Virgin has led this charge, which has now gone ballistic with planned missions to Mars and the surrounding never-never. Elon Musk of PayPal and Tesla fame has founded SpaceX, which has just won a NASA contract. Jeff Bezos of Amazon is in the race with Blue Origin (named after the glorious oceans of our planet). The titles of recently published books on the subject such as ‘Space

Barons’ and ‘Rocket Billionaire’ say it all. So what is going on? The simple answer is that the human species is curious and adventurous. It is natural to seek new horizons and this leads to technological advancement. Also, there is the valid point that the digital revolution these buccaneers largely control has changed the dynamic and provided a technological step change for planetary exploration. The more complex answer, however, and the metaphorical gorilla on the bus, is that we have f*cked up Planet Earth, it’s time to start getting off and there is money to be made in life rafts and offshore cities. But why the red planet, Mars? It has no water and seems about as habitable as a desert, and we have a perfectly good blue planet that just needs a little TLC. We have never left the place nor truly understood what is here. The oceans cover 70 per cent of the planet and are as deep in part as Everest is high. We are still learning pharmaceutical secrets from plants. Isn’t there enough to enjoy and discover right here? The planet has been conquered, exploited and divided up like a monopoly board. Rampant greed has one per cent of the world’s population acquiring 82 per cent of global wealth annually generated. Surely it’s time to smell the roses and share the bounty? We have been a very busy species. Material growth needs to be displaced with community and spiritual growth. People need to consume less and share it around better if we are to maintain a habitable, peaceful planet - take a deep breath, eat less meat, play less golf, watch less Netflix and enjoy more bushwalks, ocean dives and surfs. We should stay on and love this planet’s evolving peaceful forces. The Aborigines were happy to stay put and live in harmony for 60,000 years; we have gone crazy since the industrial revolution only 300 years ago. Capitalism and communism need to be replaced by a new environmental humanism. Forget Mars, there is still plenty of work to do here.

Never miss a moment.



ou know that selfie you’re dying to take as you cross the finishing line of the City2Surf, the photo that will encapsulate your pain and accomplishment for all your adoring social media fans? Well, now you’ll have to pay for it. A document leaked discreetly from Waverley Council outlines plans to fine every runner whose selfie contains images of Bondi Beach in the background. Council is citing intellectual property rights over the iconic beach and its surrounds as justification for the fine. Council will be able to locate every offending selfie through a secretive and innovative software program that scours the Internet with extreme precision and is famed among the intelligence community for its efficacy. According to the anonymous source of the leak, the program was offered free of charge. “Council acquired the program from someone using the Internet handle ‘P Dutty’, who claims to have developed the program in con38 The Beast | August 2018

junction with a group calling themselves Cambridge... University? No, not university... Cambridge Press? No, but it was definitely Cambridge something,” the source said. The exact amount of the fine has not been clarified but the document does reveal that any selfie featuring the stars of Bondi Rescue will incur a larger fine. The document also reveals Council’s determination to persuade ratepayers and runners that all revenue will be well spent. A portion will be dedicated to the pavement after it receives a beating from thousands of pounding legs, while some money will be directed to a fund to compensate residents of Bondi and Vaucluse for the emotional distress of having to share their hallowed turf with non-residents for a day. Other funds will be sent to charity. “The software is so powerful that it can identify the charity for which runners are raising money,” the source revealed. “The fine will therefore be withdrawn automatically from

the runner’s bank account, sent to the council, processed by this Cambridge mob, double-checked against the City2Surf transponder data to ensure that the offending runner did actually finish, then returned to Council via the tax office before finally being sent to the charity.” “The greater expediency of this process will ensure that a larger proportion of the charitable donation actually reaches those in need.” The source conceded that it may be possible for runners to avoid the fine. “Obviously using #citytosurf will give you away, as will other associated tags such as #nosweat. But, if you want to increase your chances of dodging the fine, don’t use #nofilter. Let’s face it folks, nobody looks that good after slogging out 14 kilometres and dragging themselves up Heartbreak Hill, unless they’re Kenyan.” “The best way to avoid the fine,” the source stressed, “is to just run for fun.”






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922 Anzac Parade, Maroubra, NSW 2035 | Level 1, 213 Bronte Road Waverley, NSW 2024


Bringing people together.

JOIN THE CLUB Words Dr Marjorie O’Neill Picture Ari Essel


lubs have always been an important part of my family and social life. I’m referring here to the registered clubs with premises, food, drinks and - perhaps more contentiously - gambling. My grandparents’ lives, I am told, were greatly enriched with the advent of Souths and the offer of chickenin-the-basket; something to get dressed up for, apparently. Growing up for me meant Friday nights at the Chinese restaurant in the Bronte RSL and, in more recent years, Wednesday night steaks at the bowling club on Birrell Street, cheap T-bones at Club Bondi on Thursdays, lemon sole Tuesdays at Easts, and so it goes on. We follow those cheap, good eats that only the clubs seem to offer and we don’t have to travel far. Clubs are also where many of us meet and sometimes the only place we see each other. I know I can catch up with my great uncle Ron and his mates at the Charing 40 The Beast | August 2018

Cross Legion Club before 6pm, my uncle Mark at the Coogee Diggers, and family besties Deb and Harry at the Juniors on Anzac Parade. The affordable function areas of our local clubs are also likely to be the venue for important events in our lives, be it a wedding, birthday party or the children’s dance exhibition. I had my 21st at the Randwick Club and my dad had his at the Charing Cross Legion Club opposite the then family newsagency. A lifelong friend had her bar mitzvah at the Hakoah Club in Bondi. Our local clubs are important institutions in our community, providing affordable social gathering places as well as food, drink and entertainment. They are the places in which we gather and meet our friends and it is here where friendships are formed, bonds are made and social capital is produced. They also provide much-needed support for many

community activities including junior sporting clubs, life saving, older citizens’ activities and more. This explains in large part why the membership of Save Bronte galvanized to fight the sale of the Bronte RSL site and why so many have joined the battle to save the Waverley Bowling Club. For those without membership of a church, temple or other special interest group, the local licensed clubs may be their only source of community engagement. For the growing numbers of us lacking much domestic entertainment space, the clubs may be our only ‘backyard’ or parlour, with the added advantage that we do not need to clean up afterwards! Importantly, for the many who are struggling with mounting energy costs, especially the aged, the clubs provide free heating. Clubs are important and we need to support them. However, many people are rightly concerned

about the impact of gambling on the community and the dependence of clubs on revenue from pokies. In my view, if someone wants to gamble a manageable, sustainable part of their income, be it on pokies or lottery tickets or get rich or thin schemes, that is their business. Of course legislation and other efforts must be directed to protecting gamblers from addictive behavior, including limiting withdrawals from ATMs and regulating the machines themselves. The good news is that there are indications that the best community clubs are already moving away from a dependence on gambling activities. There is some great data coming out of our clubs showing that the combination of club culture and events can be a far stronger magnet than gambling for attracting revenue. A number of local Eastern Suburbs clubs are already earning the majority of their revenue over the bar with declining pokie participation, which is a very promising sign. These venues have become places that you can bring your entire family to and have a great day. They are a great example of how clubs don’t need to be dependent on pokie revenue in order to be sustainable. My call to the clubs is to bring back more good entertainment and some appropriate décor to attract more of our younger residents. Friday night at Easts Leagues Sessions Bar used to be the happening place to be, with cheap drinks, dim lighting and karaoke. I’m sorry to say this but now it feels completely soulless and totally dedicated to pokies. If there is anybody reading this article who doesn’t frequent a local club, I recommend that you give it a go - you will probably be surprised by who you meet there. My bet (pun intended) is that you will want to preserve it. Dr Marjorie O’Neill is a Waverley Councillor. The views expressed here are her own, although we generally agree with them.


Rachael COOGEE Absolutely. They support local sport, especially children’s sport, and they support the surf clubs that keep our beaches safe. They’re great venues for parties and functions too. I took my son to Coogee Legion Club on Saturday and we were there for the Ode. He asked what it was about and I was able to explain to him that it was about paying respect to the diggers who fought for our country, so they’re educational as well.

John BRONTE Yes, because it gives that mix of old and young, and brings the old school to the new school. At the old Bronte RSL you’d be drinking with the old diggers... it’s just that ‘community’ thing. Plus it’s cheap schooners and I like cheap schooners. Bronte has changed a lot since the RSL closed, but I think the new school hipsters would probably enjoy it now if it was still there. It’s a shame it’s gone, but hopefully one day it will return.

Carissa WAVERLEY Yes they are important, because they bring the old and young together and they also give a sense of value to the community, and they provide a venue from which we can recognise our heroes who have served and still serve - our country in our armed services, and where we can all get together on Anzac Day and other commemorative days. The Eastern Suburbs is definitely worse off for having lost so many clubs. June 2018 | The Beast 41

August 2018 MONDAY

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UNDERWATER DANCE Aquabumps has collaborated with Dion Lee and the Australian Ballet on an underwater photo shoot, with 12 limited edition artworks launching today from 6.30-8.30pm at the Aquabumps Gallery, Bondi. For more information, please visit

INFO ARVO FOR TEACHERS Centennial Parklands offer unique excursion and outdoor learning programs using play-based teaching techniques to provide a learning experience that’s far removed from the everyday classroom scenario. For info about today’s session, visit

SURF OR TURF AT BBPB Drop in to Bondi Beach Public Bar every Monday for a grilled Rangers Valley rump or the fish of the day for only $20. The meat raffle is on from 7.30pm and you can enjoy a $5 schooner with your meal. For more info and other weekly specials, visit

TRIVIA NIGHT AT THE CHARO Wrangle a bunch of your smartest buddies and head to the Charing Cross Hotel for trivia with Nick from Trivia Mafia every Tuesday from 7pm. There are great prizes and you can tuck into a delicious feed while you’re there. Please visit

AN EVENING WITH JAMELLE WELLS Join senior ABC newsreader and court reporter Jamelle Wells at Margaret Martin Library this evening from 6.30-7.30pm as she discusses her recently published memoir, a tough and fearless account of her challenging career. Visit

INTERNATIONAL CAT DAY Yes, there is an international day for cats, and Waverley Council is honouring our feline friends by inviting cat lovers to an author talk with Philipa Sandall and illustrator Ad Long this evening from 6.30-8pm at Waverley Library. Visit

GENDER BENDER BINGO IS BACK Rather than staying inside watching Netflix and getting depressed each night, get down to the Charo for Gender Bender Bingo every Monday from 7pm. There are plenty of awesome prizes and an eclectic crowd to mingle with. Visit

HAPPY WEEK AT COOGEE PAVILION Rather than settling for the standard happy hour, the crew at Coogee Pavilion are putting on Happy Week, with $6 drinks from 5-7pm every weekday. Drop in to Coogee’s finest establishment for a $6 schooner, house wine or spirit and cheers the day away.

FOOD ADDICTS MEETINGS Tonight, Food Addicts in Recovery Anonymous (FA) is hosting one of its twice weekly meetings, which are held every Wednesday at 7pm and Friday at 10am at Salvation Army Hall, 100 Boyce Road, Maroubra. For more information, please visit

SPRITZ & SPUNTINI AT DA ORAZIO Drop in to Bondi’s Da Orazio Pizza + Porchetta from 5-7pm any day of the week and enjoy a selection of their delicious drinks from $7-$10, and you can tuck into Sydney’s best pizza while you’re there. For more information, please visit

MONDAY ROAST AT THE CLOEY Deal with this miserable cold weather like the clever human you are by going to the Clovelly Hotel and taking advantage of their $25 Monday night roast with a glass of house wine or local tap beer. For more information, please visit

CATHERINE HICKSON EXHIBITION Art2Muse Gallery presents the 12th solo exhibition by still life oil painter Catherine Hickson, which will run from today until September 3. Catherine’s compositions allow her to investigate objects and their relationships to each other on the picture plane. Visit

WOOLLAHRA VIEW CLUB MEETING Looking for a way to give back to the community? This leading women’s volunteering organisation meets at 10am on the 4th Wednesday of every month at Gaden Cafe & Community Centre. To get involved, please give Jan a call on either 9357 3448 or 0422 922 095.

BURGERS AND BEER AT BBPB Drop in to Bondi Beach Public Bar any time on a Thursday to try their famous Squish Burger for only $10 and enjoy a $5 schooner with your meal. BBPB is Bondi’s freshest venue and everyone is welcome. For more info and other weekly specials, visit

JOIN WAVERLEY BUSHCARE Join like-minded locals and help make a difference to one of Waverley’s special green spaces. You’ll learn about native plants and wildlife and enjoy the benefits of time spent in nature. No experience is necessary. For more information, visit

MALONEYS HOME DELIVERY Too lazy to do your grocery shopping? Maloneys offers a complete home delivery service, so there’s no excuse for living on Domino’s and Deliveroo. Get your order in by 7pm and it’ll be delivered fresh to your door the next day. Please visit

STEAK NIGHT AT THE CLOEY Get your weekly hit of high quality protein with mouth-watering steaks from the grill, served with salad, chips and a choice of sauce for only $16 every Wednesday evening from 5pm at the Clovelly Hotel. For more information, please visit

HAVE YOUR SAY ON THE BAY Woollahra Council is calling on locals to provide their feedback on the plan for a youth recreation area at Rushcutters Bay Park. Everyone is invited to have their say and submissions close tomorrow. Please visit to share your thoughts.

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PONY FACE AT COOGEE DIGGERS Beloved indie rockers Pony Face, along with special guest singer songwriter Matt Boylan-Smith, will be rocking The Bunker at Coogee Diggers this evening from 7pm. Tickets are only $10 from Moshtix. For more information, visit

SYDNEY SWANS v COLLINGWOOD Get down to the Sydney Cricket Ground this evening to witness the mighty Sydney Swans as they do battle with Collingwood. The game starts at 7.25pm and it’s guaranteed to be an epic encounter. For more information, please visit

TOUCH SENSITIVE AT THE SHEAF The Sheaf is stoked to announce that Australian vibe-maker Touch Sensitive will be taking over the main stage today from 5pm. Get a crew together for an afternoon of sunsets, sounds and ice cold Coronas. For more information, please visit

VALLEY OF LIGHT Centennial Parklands invites you to a free one-hour public light experience using 100 individual lights of various colours. Come and learn the effects of long exposure photography and how it can create other-worldly renditions. Visit

THE PINKS AT COOGEE DIGGERS Get down to The Bunker at Coogee Diggers this evening from 7pm to see The Pinks play the blues. The Pinks is made up of the men behind the music of Dynamic Hepnotics, The Cruel Sea and Mental As Anything. Tickets are only $25 from Moshtix.

THE SUN-HERALD CITY2SURF Fun and pain awaits you today at the 47th annual Sun-Herald City2Surf. The course is hard, winding from Hyde Park to Bondi Beach via Toffsville, and it’s all for charity. The Beast recommends designating the Charlie Teo Foundation. Please visit

ASTRONOMY IN THE PARK Escape the city’s light pollution and join local astrophysicists and astronomers at Centennial Park to immerse yourself in a night of stargazing at this wonderful annual event in the heart of the park. For more information, please visit

SETTING LIMITS Join speaker Madeleine Winter from Hand in Hand Parenting in the Margaret Martin Library from 10am-12pm as she explains how to build better relationships with your children using a parent-tested, practical approach to limit setting. Visit www.

BONDI SUNDAY MARKETS Today, and every Sunday between 10am and 4pm, you’ll find clothing from up-and-coming designers, handmade jewellery, exotic imports, retro-chic furniture, vinyl records, homewares, one-off vintage pieces and more. Please visit

DAFFODIL DAY Join thousands of wonderful Cancer Council volunteers today as they hit the streets, shopping centres and train stations helping to raise vital funds to bring us one step closer to a cancer free future. For more information and to register, visit

ROOSTERS v BRONCOS Get down to Allianz Stadium this evening to support the mighty Chooks as they take on the Brisbane Broncos. The game kicks off at 7.35pm and we recommend getting there early to beat the crowds. For more information, please visit

JOIN THE ROYAL RASCALS Royal Randwick Shopping Centre invites families with kids to join the Royal Rascals Kids Club. Children will receive a birthday gift and special birthday offers from Top Juice, Christopher’s Cakes and Just Cuts, as well as first access tickets. Visit

QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE Queens Of The Stone Age return to the Hordern Pavilion for their Villains World Tour this evening and tomorrow night. They will be joined by Australian blues maestro C.W. Stoneking and The Chats. For more information, please visit

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The global neurosurgeon.

Finding the Right Balance

CHARLIE TEO Interview James Hutton Pictures Jeremy Greive

uring the month The Beast D caught up with legendary local neurosurgeon Dr Charlie Teo... How are you this morning Charlie? I'm good, thank you. I didn't sleep well last night, so apart from that... no, I'm good. You're a born and bred Sydney boy; where did you spend your childhood and what are your fondest memories of growing up here? I was a westie, born out at a place called Picnic Point on the Georges River. It was very blue collar. I have fond memories of fishing there and playing cowboys and Indians in the bush, mostly with my sister but also with some of the local kids. I was schooled at Trinity Grammar initially - still living at home - and then I started boarding at The Scots College at nine years old. I was introduced to the Eastern Suburbs from a pretty young age. When did you move to the Eastern Suburbs to live? Having been schooled in the Eastern Suburbs, with most of my friends being in the Eastern Suburbs, I guess it was a natural progression to the Eastern Suburbs. I went to the University of New South Wales and that's when I first started living in the Eastern Suburbs, initially on campus at Basser College, then I moved out after my first year at Basser and lived in Kensington, Maroubra, Rosebery, Edgecliff, Bondi Junction... you know, just basically all around the Eastern Suburbs. What did your parents do when you were growing up? Dad was an obstetrician gynecologist and mum was a nurse, and she ran a baby health check clinic. Dad initially was a GP and then when I was about eight or nine he moved to England to do a three-year fellowship in obstetrics and gynecology. It was also at that time that he divorced mum, so I never actually knew him when he was

a specialist; I knew him when he was a general practitioner. You live with your wife and four daughters; how is it living with five ladies in the same house? It's probably more emotionally taxing than brain surgery. It's probably more challenging than anything else I've ever done. I mean, I don't think this is controversial to say, but I don't understand women - I never have, never will. Despite the fact that I've got four daughters, and all my staff are female, and I'm surrounded by females, I still don't understand them. And they don't understand me. It's like ne'er the twain will meet, you know? We've just always been like that. I love them dearly, my life wouldn't be complete without women, but I don't understand them; it's been a real challenge.

“We were very much a minority group, misunderstood - or not understood at all really - because most people didn't have exposure to us.” Have you had any trouble with those pesky Tamarama boys? No, we've been pretty lucky. There's been one or two that I thought were a little bit pesky, but no, mostly they've chosen good boys; they're all worthy to be my sons-in-law. Obviously my daughters haven't thought so, because they've gone through them like their underwear. But no, I've liked all of them. I read that your elder sister Annie used to protect you when you were younger, when you were living around Bankstown; what was she protecting you from? Well, you won't remember, but you'll have to at least

acknowledge that in those days there were very few Asians. For example, at Scots College, when I was there, there were only two Asians. We were very much a minority group, misunderstood - or not understood at all really - because most people didn't have exposure to us. Your background is Chinese and Singaporean, right? Yeah, Singaporean Chinese. We were subjected to racism on a daily basis. It didn't really bother me too much, and I didn't quite understand it - I was a bit naïve, I guess - but it bothered my sister terribly. I would turn a blind eye to it, and I'd just sometimes hide, but she would confront them. Like a little rabid dog, she would sort of yap at them, "Don't you say that..." and she would carry on. She used to try to protect me, protect us both, from racism. What's Annie doing now? She's retired. She was in a business with her husband in investment sort of stuff. I didn't quite understand it. Do you ever experience racism now that you're older and Australians are generally more educated? No. Well, it is a problem for some, but I haven't noticed it as much. Any sort of racism that I experience now, which is very rare, is very covert. I'm sure it exists, and I have gone on record as saying that I'm sure it exists because people tell me it exists, but thankfully I haven't been exposed to it as much as I was in the past. Do you think that some of the antiMuslim views of Australians are similar to what the Asian immigrants experienced 30 or 40 years ago? Yeah, absolutely it's the case, because the racism was initially aimed at the 'wogs' - the Italians and Greeks - because they were an unknown entity. They were perceived as a threat because they were hardworking and they had good family values, and they stuck together, so a lot

August 2018 | The Beast 45

of Australians thought they were threatening. Then the Asians came along and they were different because they looked different - again, different values, different culture, so they were a threat. Then the Vietnamese boat people came over. I remember when the Vietnamese boat people were a threat as well. They were vilified and persecuted. Then of course there was the Muslim or Arabic 'invasion'. They're also an unknown quantity. We don't understand their religion; we don't understand their culture. Thankfully they kind of look the same as us, so I think there are a few of them that haven't quite experienced the amount of racism that Asians experienced, because we look so different. But it's exactly the same phenomenon - a new culture coming in, threatening us, threatening our stability and our values - so the natural thing to do is turn against them rather than embrace them, initially at least.

“We should be the most thankful, happiest people in the world, but we're not.” Do you think life in Sydney is better now than it was when you were growing up? Oh, absolutely not. I used to say that Sydney was, and Australia was, the best place to live in the world. I don't often say that it's no longer the best place to live in the world, but I certainly think it a lot. We are too entitled and we have things so good that we're not appreciative of what we've got. I do a lot of travelling now; I'm what I call a 'global neurosurgeon' who operates on many different continents. Almost every second week I'm overseas somewhere. Given what we have here in Australia, compared to what other people have and should be thankful for, our level of contentment and happiness is significantly disparate to what it should be. We have the perfect climate, we have the perfect social welfare, we have very little poverty, we have good education, we have fresh food and we don't have borders that we have to protect. Well, we do, but you know what I mean. It's hard to get here... Yeah, and we don't have the same extremes of weather that others have. We should be the most thankful, happiest people in the world, but we're not.

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How has that changed between when you were growing up, say, and now? Why have people become so entitled? There was no concept of rage when I grew up. There was courtesy and pleasantries and openness and 'ockerism', so people would naturally be open to strangers and naturally be nice to other people. These days you still have that, of course, but it's not natural, and there's more rage now. Well, not more - more's the wrong descriptive - because there was none before. So you have rage now that you didn't have before. Now there's road rage, there's street rage, there's office rage, there's even bloody surf rage! What the hell is that all about? The surfer is meant to be your iconic Aussie: the laid back, ‘she'll be right, mate’, friendly, all-embracing, allencompassing good guy. Yet now our surfers are upset with other people cutting in on them and invading their beaches. And they demonstrate that. They're demonstrative in their parochialism and they're demonstrative in their narrow-mindedness by being openly angry at other surfers. I think it's terrible. I think Australians need a really big awakening. They need to go overseas and see how hard other people have it. The poverty that I see... you go to the Philippines, for example, and you see intense poverty and intense will side by side. You go to Africa and you see intense poverty and malnutrition everywhere. You go to India and you see the terrible conditions that people live in. You go to China and see the loss of human rights. Here we don't have any of that. Where do you surf? I bodysurf, I don't board surf. I mostly go to Bondi and Bronte, and Maroubra a little bit, but mostly Bondi. Have you seen incidents in the water? Oh, yeah. And my buddies tell me that it happens all the time, and when I try to get on the board - not that I'm good on it - I get a hard time. I'm not a surfer so I'm not quite sure how prevalent it is, but it's certainly prevalent enough for people to tell me that it's happening quite often. Do you think Aussie blokes are worse than other men when it comes to that kind of aggression? It comes in different forms. It's a little bit less sophisticated here. What I mean by that is, I spent a lot of time in America where there is rage, anger, parochialism, but it's a little bit more

sophisticated and therefore a little more covert. In Australia it's a little more obvious and overt. We are a very violent nation when it comes to the reporting of violent incidents. Some say that's because we have a better reporting system, but I would contend that it's actually true that we are a violent nation. We're not known as a peaceful, placid sort of country. I kind of like the way that it's overt, as opposed to covert. At least you know where you stand with an Aussie. I think, with an Aussie bloke, if he doesn't like you he'll make it pretty clear that he doesn't like you, as opposed to other cultures that are nice to your face while behind your back they're thinking something different. I would rather someone just say, "You're a prick and I don't like you." Do you think part of the problem is how some of our bigger licensed venues are designed? There is a lot of alcohol-fuelled violence. When you get hundreds of blokes pissed in a big space together, it's going to cause problems no matter where you are, right? Yeah, I've thought about that. I lived in Scandinavia for a few months and they get really drunk. I mean, they drink to get drunk, and yet they don't have the same degree of violence. In fact, when they get drunk, they're usually happy drunks or funny drunks, as opposed to aggressive, unhappy drunks. Why should that be? They've got testosterone like us, and they're usually young males like our drinkers, so I'm not quite sure. It's either genetic - people are inherently happy or unhappy and alcohol simply brings out their premorbid traits - or it’s that concept I was talking about before, this entitlement and the general rage and general unhappiness that Australians unfortunately have. What happens to the brain when someone delivers a proper blow to someone else's head? It's a combination of things. There's damage at the actual point of the blow, where you're hit. That gives you soft tissue injury and skull fractures, and sometimes blood clots. Then there are the consequences of the acceleration and de-acceleration from the blow. That gives you very subtle but very real and very damaging effects, and they’re called shearing injuries. Shearing injuries are really what hurts your brain because, essentially, if you think of the brain as a whole network of very, very fine fibres,

when you accelerate or de-accelerate the brain those fibres snap and break, and you get shearing injuries and you get damage to the brain itself, as opposed to structures outside the brain. It's the shearing injuries that really hurt the brain. Have you ever punched someone in the head? Yeah, because I was a bouncer for a few years. I got my black belt when I was a very young boy and to get myself through university, because my father wouldn't pay for me, I had to earn good money. I started working as a waiter at the Centrepoint Tavern, wearing one of those funny little waistcoats and feeling a little bit embarrassed about it but enjoying it. There was a scuffle one day at Centrepoint Tavern and I helped the bouncers out. There was a guy called Jeff Tunks, his son was Peter Tunks, who was a footballer real sort of Eastern Suburbs men. Jeff Tunks was so appreciative he asked me if I wanted to be a bouncer, and I thought, "Yeah, better money." So I was a bouncer for almost five years at Centrepoint Tavern, and at the Chevron Hotel in Kings Cross, so I got in a few scuffles. Jeff used to teach me that a good bouncer is someone who never has to get in a fight, because a good bouncer can always talk his way out of it, settle things down, use psychology, etcetera. I was a good bouncer, because I often didn't fight, but every now and then you know, you're a 19 year-old male with a lot of testosterone and a black belt, and some people just piss you off... You are Australia's highest profile neurosurgeon; when did you decide that you were going to pursue that specialty? It was one of those specialties that I was very fearful of, and very apprehensive with neurosurgical patients, because it's a specialty that is really terrible. It's an unforgiving specialty - any mistake and someone will die. I didn't like that, so I steered away from neurosurgery and decided to do paediatric surgery - just general paediatric surgery - and started my residency in paediatric surgery. While I was doing paediatric surgery I was exposed to neurosurgery. This was back in 1984... One year after Michael Jackson released Thriller... And when I was exposed to paediatric neurosurgery I fell in love with it. It was serendipitous, it was fated that I should be exposed to it, and it's been a love affair ever since.

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How hard is it to become qualified to the point where you can actually dig around inside people's heads? It's very difficult. It's a long process of medical school, internship, residency, registrarship, fellowship, and then you're a fully qualified neurosurgeon. Most fully qualified neurosurgeons don't become qualified to operate on their own until they're about 32 to 35, usually 15 years of study after school.

“They all knew that I was a troublemaker, that I had a big mouth, that I couldn't be silenced, that I was a good neurosurgeon and that I was going to basically be a disruptor and a thorn in their sides.� With the advent of social media and the proliferation of misinformation, or 'fake news', it's given rise to a kind of an anti-science conspiracy theorist movement, not just across Australia but the world. Many of my friends have moved up to Byron Bay and Brunswick Heads and gone completely bonkers. All of a sudden they've become anti-vaxxers who'd rather listen to their yoga teacher for medical advice than immunologists and scientists who've been studying these things for years and years. Does this mistrust of medicine drive you insane? Why do you think there is this ridiculous movement? I think you nailed it by saying it's mistrusting medicine. You think about this: if the public had a total 100 per cent trust in doctors and medicine, of course it wouldn't have happened. It's our fault, it's doctors' fault for not being well educated holistically. Medicine, I think, is the art. It's the art of healing. The art of healing has several different faces to it, one face being traditional medicine, another face being spiritual, another face being emotional, another face being homeopathy, another face being acupuncture, etcetera. So healing someone is not just giving them a tablet; it's nurturing them, it's showing you care, it's altering someone's diet sometimes. Maybe it's adding a mineral to their diet,

maybe it's changing their faecal bacterial load. It's everything, yet doctors have the sense that they're the only ones who know how to heal people, and what they've learned at university is the only way and there's no other way. So they're ignorant. Most doctors are ignorant of the other means of healing people, and that ignorance has led to mistrust because it's pretty obvious that some of those other things work. As soon as those other things work, and the doctor hasn't endorsed them - not only not endorsed them, but actually condemned them - then it breeds distrust. Why would you trust someone unless they knew what they were talking about? And clearly we don't know what we're talking about when it comes to healing someone. Oh, we know what we're talking about when it comes to traditional medicine, but we don't know everything about all the other forms of healing, so we have created that extremist. That person who won't vaccinate their child is doing so because of a mistrust in doctors' knowledge and doctors' caring. We created the monster, and it is a monster, because vaccination is good. There are some things that traditional medicine offers that are good. Antibiotics are good, in the appropriate setting. Vaccination is good, and surgery... well, some surgeries are good. If doctors had been better trained, or if doctors were more accepting of other forms of healing, I don't think this monster would have been created. Do big pharmaceutical companies really pay doctors? Unfortunately, personal financial gain does play a role in clinical decision making for some practitioners. There are some medical conditions that may be treated with both tablets and surgery. If you pay a physician to put that patient in a drug trial then it would be tempting to hold onto that patient even if you knew they would do better with surgery. Similarly, a surgeon might recommend an operation even though the literature shows the eventual outcome is just as good with tablets and physiotherapy! There are two human traits that are responsible for many of your health system failures: greed is the reason a purely privatised system is doomed to fail, laziness is the reason a purely public system fails. So does that happen to the point where there's a known cure for something but the pharmaceutical


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August 2018 | The Beast 49

companies will withhold it because they won't make as much money out of it? Or they'll lobby government to not let this treatment be used? The extremists speculate that. I've never really made a statement about that because I haven't looked into it, so I'm ignorant. I'd hate to think that's true, but I guess it could be. My brother just had several months of chemo; it's harsh but it's the only thing that works. So many people say, "Have you tried alternative medicine?" When I ask them what the alternative cure for cancer is, they'll say, "Oh, hemp oil," or some other nonsense. What makes these people think that they know more than doctors? I hate to say it, but we're our own worst enemies. This distrust is basically because of our ignorance. And I include myself in that, of course, because I didn't know about homeopathy, and I don't know enough about osteopathy and chiropractic, and all the other forms of healing. So we've created the monster. Wouldn't it be great if you went and saw a doctor - a real doctor, a real healer - who was knowledgeable at everything? One who knew what selenium could cure, knew what hemp oil could cure, knew about acupuncture? You would have total trust in that person, wouldn't you? I suppose so... So the distrust of modern day medical doctors is due to the fact that when people go to them, some arrogantly say, "Oh, this is the only way you can be treated." Then a person might find out that old mate down the road was treated with something else and they think, "Why the hell didn't you tell me about that? Now I don't trust you." When chemotherapy is actually the right thing to do, they're not going to listen to you. What are the biggest obstacles you faced in becoming qualified as a neurosurgeon? I guess it was my colleagues, and the system, because neurosurgery itself was never a hurdle. I'm so passionate about it and love it so much that I just wanted more and more neurosurgery - I couldn't get enough. But what I hated about neurosurgery and, I guess, what I still hate about it, and medicine in general, is the politics of medicine. Again, I went into medicine with a very naïve and idealistic view of doctors; that there's politics in everything but politics would never, ever get in the way of

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patient care or doing the right thing by your patient. That's very naïve because unfortunately politics is in everything, and there's more politics in medicine than there is in most other vocations so it's going to get in the way of patient care and doing the right thing. But it was a real eye opener. It's been the biggest hurdle in my entire life. That is, understanding or navigating the system. I read an article on Pharmacynews., which I must admit I don't read that often, which said: "Charlie Teo wants to set up his own medical regulator, arguing that AHPRA is acting as judge, jury, and executioner of doctors' working lives." Firstly, is that an accurate quote? Can you explain to our readers what you mean by that? Oh, my God. Okay, so it is 100 per cent accurate. I'd probably be sued, so I'm not going to give you the names, but what I can do is tell you that it goes something like this: Dr. A moves in on Dr. B's territory. Dr. A is a good bloke, a good doctor, patients love him, so he starts stealing patients off Dr. B. Dr. B gets threatened, and Dr. B is not the new kid on the block. He's old and established. He plays tennis with the other doctors, his kids go to school with the medical administrators, his wife has morning tea with the judge's wife... so he's very well established. Okay, what does Dr. B do? He goes, "F**k, I'm losing my private practice - Dr. A is invading my territory!" Dr. A has no support system. It’s very easy to get rid of him. What does Dr. B do? He makes up a complaint about Dr. A. It's totally vexatious, totally unfounded, totally scurrilous, but who determines if the complaint is legitimate? Well, Dr. B is the chairman of the medical advisory board, so when the complaint comes in, who assesses it? He assesses it himself. I know you're probably sitting there going, "Well, that's a hyperbole, Charlie. That would never happen." But I'm telling you, it happens every day. So Dr. B goes, "Oh, Dr. B, you've made a complaint against Dr. A. Yes, it's a legitimate complaint. I'm going to get someone else because I'm going to go through 'due process'. I'm going to get someone else to verify if the complaint is legitimate." So he calls up his buddy, because he's well established, and says, "Oh, can you just please tick this off and say that this guy's acting sub-standardly, or he's got bad results?" His buddy says

yes, of course he's going to, then the hospital administrators, or AHPRA, goes, "Okay, what are we going to do about Dr. A? Who do we ask? Let's ask Dr. B." Hang on, wasn't Dr. B the same man that made the complaint, and deemed it right? Oh well, doesn't matter, he's got the same hat on. Then he puts on a different hat and goes, "He needs to be de-registered." Then Dr. A has to be de-registered. Can Dr. A have appeal? Of course he can go to appeal. Who does he appeal to? He appeals to Dr. B! Dr. B himself? I would get sued so I'm not going to say it, but I promise I could give you eight examples of that in neurosurgery.

“So they think, in their minds, that I'm trying to make them look bad. Even if I'm not trying, I am making them look bad.” You spent a decade in the States; what were you doing over there? I wanted to get a job in Australia, of course, but I already had a bad name in Australia, from my colleagues, who then... From Dr. B? All the Dr. Bs. They all knew that I was a troublemaker, that I had a big mouth, that I couldn't be silenced, that I was a good neurosurgeon and that I was going to basically be a disruptor and a thorn in their sides. So very kindly they said to me when I came back, "Charlie, I think you'd do well in the States; the Americans will love you and I think you should stay there." So I did a fellowship over there, came back and interviewed with a few people, and thankfully I met a neurosurgeon called Peter Maloney down in Wollongong, and a guy called Tony Bookallil up in Newcastle, and they were kind enough and manly enough to say, "Charlie, I would never have you as my partner in Australia. You are just way too big for Australia. Get the hell out of here and go back to America." So I went back to America. Tony was a really lovely man. He's dead now, but Peter Maloney, he was not a lovely man but he was an honest man. They both really opened my eyes, and I said, "Shit, I'm not

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wanted here. I'll get the hell back to America," where I was really wanted and loved. I had a great career over there. You're renowned for operating on people who've been told that their tumours are inoperable, and you've received criticism as a result. Some neurosurgeons say you’re "too radical, offering false hope to patients who are believed to have an incurable brain cancer or a brain tumour that is too dangerously located". Who are the people saying this and why are they saying it? It's too much to cover in a short period of time. You could go to my TEDx talk. I gave a TEDx talk about this whole concept. Why am I offering surgery to someone in a relatively hopeless situation? Let's presume that all my colleagues are altruistic, humanistic, philanthropic, kind, caring doctors, okay? Let's presume that they're all like that. They see a patient with a tumour that they think is either not worth operating on or physically can't be operated on. So to say to that patient, "It's inoperable," they're doing it out of the goodness of their heart and the best interests of the patient. That patient then comes to see me and I go, "Well, I think it is worth operating on, because my riskbenefit ratio is different to theirs, because I'm a great neurosurgeon." I don't say that, but you know what I mean, that's what I'm thinking. "I've got very steady hands"... Yeah, and I not only think that, but I also believe in patient autonomy. Basically, patient autonomy is respecting a patient's wishes. So as long as you are open with that patient - "This is a difficult operation. Chance of success is very low. I could kill you. I could maim you. I give you no guarantees..." - if the patient still decides to go ahead I'll give it a shot, even if it's only a one in a hundred chance that it might work, especially when the alternative is death. And yeah, with neurosurgery it mostly is. It's mostly, "You're going to die, or we'll give it a shot." So then I operate on the patient. I get the tumour out. Everyone's happy. They pat me on the back. They're my greatest advocates from then on. How does it make the other neurosurgeon look? It makes the other neurosurgeon look bad. So they think, in their minds, that I'm trying to make them look bad. Even if I'm not trying, I am making them look bad. So when that surgeon looks bad

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he has two alternatives, two options. The first option is to go, "Oh my God, Charlie Teo, he's amazing. I'm going to go and learn his technique," or, "I'm going to refer patients to him." Alternatively, they go, "That f*cker, I'm going to destroy him." I imagine there are a lot of big egos in neurosurgery and it would be hard for other surgeons to say to you, "How do you do that? Can you show me what you do?" Yeah, it takes a very strong ego, and it takes a very confident person, and a very altruistic, caring person to go, "I'm not as good as you. I'd like to learn your techniques. I'm going to upskill. I'm going to take time away from my family. I'm going to pay money. I'm going to come and do a course. I'm going to go overseas and learn techniques, so I can be as good as you and get the same results as you." It takes a lot. Really, it takes ego, pride, money, sacrifice, upskilling. Compare that to instead saying to your patients, "Oh, Charlie Teo is a f*cking cowboy. He charges all this money. He failed his exams..." and all the other things they've told their patients. Then, if that doesn't work, they go to Dr. B and what does Dr. B do? He writes a statement, he takes an advertisement out in the newspaper, he goes on TV... he basically tries to vilify me.

“That's why I treat all people the same, because I know that we're all simple little pawns on a huge sort of chess board and none of us are any better than anyone else.� Did you fail an exam? Yeah, absolutely I did. I didn't fail it just once, I failed it three times. Is that standard when you're studying something so intense? No, it's very rare to fail the final exams three times. When you spend your days saving people's lives, including these 'one in a hundreds' with 'inoperable' brain cancer, how do you stay grounded? This is a very philosophical question. My answer to you is based on my reading of philosophy, and my general sort of wisdom that comes with

60 years of life. That is, it's all about balance in your life. I've seen people who are great neurosurgeons, great doctors, but they have no balance, and they become consumed by the pettiness of life and the pettiness of their jobs, and politics, and they become the Dr. Bs. So I credit my family, my hobbies, my interests outside of medicine, my westie upbringing, the racism that I've experienced, the fact that I've always been a minority... I credit all those things with making me the person who I am, the person who knows that I'm no better a person than anyone else. My mother really taught me that. My mother taught me, "Charles, don't ever think that you're above anyone else. Don't ever think that someone who has a menial job like a cleaner, or something like that, can't offer you something that you don't know or you won't benefit from." It was a great lesson. That's why I treat all people the same, because I know that we're all simple little pawns on a huge sort of chess board and none of us are any better than anyone else. Do mobile phones give you brain cancer? The anti-mobile phone people want me to say yes. The mobile phone people want me to say no. I will just have to say this: I don't know. But I'm very concerned. Here's what I'd like you to know: it's not just me who's concerned. The World Health Organization has classified mobile phones as potential carcinogens. Again, do a fact check and you'll see that they are now listed under potential carcinogens group 2-B, I think, or 2-A. That means that 300 independent scientists, who work for the World Health Organization, who assess all the literature, still feel the same way as I do, that they are potentially a cancer-causing agent. I've been condemned for making statements by Dr. B and my colleagues, but it's no longer just me, it's the World Health Organization. You're looking at brain scans all the time; do you notice that people's brains generally look different since the age of mobiles? Absolutely. The study that most people quote is the Interphone study. The Interphone study was a study paid for by the telecoms, unfortunately, but still it was very controversial. It was a very large study. The null hypothesis was that mobile phones do not cause brain cancer. Well, the study came out, delayed, but it still came out and it showed that mobile phones did

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not cause brain cancer. But if you read the small print it went on to say, "However, if you just look at the high usage patients - and high usage was more than half an hour a day - there is a more than two times higher instance of cancer on the side of usage.� So even the Interphone study, which is the study that everyone holds up as showing that there's no link, if you read the fine print there is a disturbing trend that 'high' mobile phone users will have a higher incidence of brain cancer on the side of usage. I'm interested to know how those results look for an 'ultra high' user... Well, the good news is that the study was done when mobile phones emitted more energy than they do these days. Many of the phones they looked at were the bricks that you'd hold against your head, and everyone admits that they were bad. So these days, these modern phones don't emit as much energy and probably aren't as dangerous. Furthermore, a lot of young kids, which is a more susceptible group, now text and they don't hold them against their head as much. So that's the good news, that the trend is getting better with the phones themselves, and the trend is getting better in terms of the way you use your phone.

“I left the old foundation because I just thought we could do it better, not because they're bad people and not because I didn't believe in the cause that they were following.� Do you turn off all your wifi around the house at night? No, I haven't got to that stage of obsessiveness. It's probably a good thing to do, but I don't. Brain cancer kills more kids in Australia than any other disease; has the survival rate improved much in recent times? The short answer is no. The long answer is that there are some types of brain cancer where chemotherapy has made a huge difference - it's a tumour called a medulloblastoma. But in terms of the most common type of brain cancer, which is called a malignant glioma, we haven't made much difference.

54 The Beast | August 2018

Did you have much involvement in the 'coward punch' law reforms? My only involvement is being a friend of Danny Green's. Danny Green has a charity set up called Stop the Coward's Punch. He asked me to be a spokesperson and to support his movement, so that's my only involvement. Do you think that shutting down the city's nightlife was a disproportionate response, or do you think it was necessary? I think it was a necessary awakening, because I certainly don't think it's been a good thing in terms of commercialism for Sydney. I mean, Sydney's gone dead now. Melbourne's taken over as the nightlife capital of Australia. So from a commercial viewpoint it was a terrible decision. From a social awareness point of view it made everyone talk. It brought up the conversation that needed to be had, and that is, "What the hell are we doing? We're all getting drunk, and we're acting like idiots, and good people who want to enjoy themselves and go to a nightclub are suffering for it." So I thought it was great, because it really brought up the conversation. It made people think, "Shit, we better do something now about it." You recently left your original notfor-profit to launch the Charlie Teo Foundation; why has this caused so much controversy? Firstly, the statement I'd like to make is that I left the old foundation because I just thought we could do it better, not because they're bad people and not because I didn't believe in the cause that they were following. I have taken the high road and wish them the best of luck, it's a great foundation. Of course I'm going to say it's a great foundation; I set it up. It was my foundation and they're still doing great work, but now there's this controversy, so what have people focused on? They've focused on the statement that I made, that I think that the overhead costs of most charities are too high. I haven't put a figure on what I think is too high, what is too low, or what is acceptable, but I think, in general, the statement is that when charities become large and corporatised, their overheads consume too much of the donated money. So administration costs were eating up too much of people's donations? Yeah, but here's the problem with your statement: the problem with your statement is that most large

charities know that they consume a lot of money, and they've got to spin it so that the public don't know that, so how do they spin it? Because there's no regulation on how to report, there's no definition of what is overheads and what isn't. So they talk about admin costs versus direct costs, versus indirect costs, versus this, versus that... so the poor old lay person, including myself, gets totally confused when you go to their profit and loss statements. Let's talk about the pub test... I like pub tests... Okay, here's the pub test: if a person told you that they made $10, but they spent $8 making that $10, you would think that only $2 was profit, wouldn't you? Yeah... Okay, so what happens is that because that sounds so bad, "I made $10 million, and I only gave $2 million to research..." they talk about 'awareness'. That's just one topic. Awareness is where you are still doing things for the cause - you're raising awareness - but you're not actually giving money to research. So what can be included under 'awareness'? Well, it turns out that a lot of charities include everyone's salary under 'awareness', because that's what they're doing, after all - they are increasing awareness, they are on the phone making phone calls, they're printing literature. So, Charity A for for example report 15 per cent admin costs. You would think that admin costs would include people's salaries. Yeah, of course... Nope. $3.1 million worth of salaries are not included in admin costs. If you read the fine print you can find all the actual figures on the ACNC website. Well, that sounds ridiculous... It is ridiculous, and I think it's almost like lying, and it's so unfair. It's so unfair, because it's hard-earned money. There are so many good charities out there - they're all good, they're all worthy causes - so how do you choose which one you give your money to? It's your money. I don't care if you got it off your family, I don't care if you inherited it, I don't care if you got it by cleaning a toilet. It's hard-earned money. It's money you could have spent on yourself... Exactly, it's money you could have spent on yourself. So you've chosen to give it to someone else; I think the least that a charity can do is to be transparent in where


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the money's going and not spin it so that it looks good. That's the least we can do, so that's what the Charlie Teo Foundation's going to do. That's our catch phrase: openness. We're going to be very, very open about where the money's going. Can you tell us a bit about the new foundation? Yeah, so the new foundation is called the Charlie Teo Foundation, and it has the same agenda as the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation, and that is to try and find treatments and possibly a cure for brain cancer. But it has two main differences. The first is that we are going to keep our overhead costs low. We're not going to spin it, we're not going to call them admin costs versus direct versus indirect costs. We're going to keep our overheads low. That's the first thing, and we're going to be really transparent about it. The second thing is that we are going to fund disruptively. If you look at universities traditionally, it's not the universities that have come up with a cure for cancer and stuff, it's these one-off mad scientists who come up with a theory and it's a cure for the disease. Look at peptic ulcers and those two crazy Australians over in Perth, Barry Marshall and Robin Warren, who tested antibiotics on themselves. The Helicobacter pylori guys? Yeah, they were two crazy guys, no one funded them, no one backed them and they had to test the theory on themselves. I want to find the Barry Marshall and Robin Warren of brain cancer. That's what we're going to fund; we're going to try to fund disruptive projects that may not be mainstream but could be the answer. How can people contribute? We have fundraisers during the year. Our major fundraiser is a ball, which we've just had, but our next funder is the City2Surf, so if your readers are going to do the City2Surf on August 12, they can designate a charity of choice and we'd like them to designate the Charlie Teo Foundation, and that will raise money for us. What are your favourite and least favourite things about the Eastern Suburbs? My favourite thing about the Eastern Suburbs is that you don't have to leave the Eastern Suburbs, ever. It's got everything. It's got beaches and walks, parks and good people, great food and retail, schools and hospitals. The bad thing is that

56 The Beast | August 2018

most people don't leave ever, and that most people in the Eastern Suburbs don't appreciate what they've got here. What's your opinion on the current state of healthcare in Australia? What would you do to make it better? Oh, again, it's a little bit too complex to answer, because there are so many different perspectives on healthcare.

“In the ideal world I would like my legacy to be to leave the Australian health system in a better shape than I came into it.� Is it well funded enough? Yeah, it's well funded enough. When something goes wrong with healthcare, like someone sits in emergency for too long and dies, when the waiting lists are too long, when there's some problem with something, everyone jumps up and down and says, "Oh, it's a terrible health system. We need more money." So the government, to get votes, uses it as a platform to get votes, "We're going to give you so many more millions of dollars..." But in my mind they're pouring money into a broken system, so it's never going to fix it. I guess to really simplify it, it goes like this: hospitals are funded with a certain amount per year and hospital administrators are judged on how well they can keep to that budget. When they go over budget they are demonised, they are persecuted, and they're punished the next year by either being demoted, fired, or getting less money, to make up for the money that they overspent. With that system the most efficient hospital is an empty hospital, because you don't go over your budget. So how do you maintain an empty hospital? Well, you certainly don't have somebody like Charlie Teo operating there, that's for sure, because Charlie Teo brings in patients from all around the world and from interstate, as well as more complex cases. Instead, you've got to encourage a system that encourages an empty hospital. What kind of doctors do you want? Do you want bad doctors? They're not going to bring in patients. Do you want staff that are rude to people? You're not going to go to a hospital where

staff are rude to you. You'll want an inefficient emergency room, where people are waiting for hours and hours. You're not going to go to that emergency room. So what happens? They fall into budget. You fill your emergency room with rude people, you fill your hospital with bad doctors, and what do you have? You have an incredibly efficient system that falls within budget. Congratulations, you get your bonus! Yeah, and the administrators are happy. Congratulations, you get your bonus. Do you think the old system, where they had the nurses' colleges attached to the hospitals, is better than the current system, where the nurses go to university? I liked the old system, because I think nursing is something that you learn on the job. It's very hard to learn nursing in a university. But there are also some really good things about the university-trained nurses. They're much more knowledgeable. If you could have a system that picked caring, compassionate people to do nursing, and then trained them well in universities, that's your ideal situation. Unfortunately, it's sometimes hard to get into nursing because it is a selective situation where they can only let a certain number in, so you may be filtering out people who would have been great nurses because they're kind and compassionate but they didn't get the marks; they're not university type people. I guess if I had to choose the system, even though there's good and bad with both, I would choose the old system. In an ideal world, what does the future hold for Charlie Teo? In the ideal world I would like my legacy to be to leave the Australian health system in better shape than I came into it. By that I mean I'd like to change the culture of mediocrity, the tall poppy syndrome. I'd like the culture to be one of a reward of excellence, firstly. Secondly, the degree of medical bullying in Australia is rife and it is destroying our medical system; I would like to finish my career by saying I've had an impact on bullying, and that it's now better - I don't think we'll ever get rid of it, but I’d like it to be better than it was - and that now we have a standard that's higher than it was, because we no longer reward mediocrity and we reward excellence.

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August 2018 | The Beast 57

If I cannot fly, let me sing.

THE UNRELIABLE GUIDE TO... SINGING Words Nat Shepherd Picture John Singleton


he Unreliable Guide loves a good old sing-song. In the bath, in the shower, driving... I’m always up for a warble and singing makes me feel good. And that’s a fact - research shows that singing increases oxygen in your blood, increasing the flow of happy hormones such as endorphins and dopamine that have a significant effect on improving mental health. All over the world, whether religious or secular, pop or classical, we have an intrinsic desire to sing that crosses cultures. But if you’re scared of sounding like a contestant on ‘Australia’s Got No Talent’, The Unreliable Guide is here to help. JOIN A CHOIR At Sweden’s University of Gothenburg, researchers found that regularly singing in a choir has remarkable benefits. Somehow singers synchronise heartbeats as they sing together and this has a calming effect as beneficial to their health as yoga (without the awful lycra). Plus you’ll make great new friends and have a laugh. What’s not to like about that? Find one close to you at

58 The Beast | August 2018

BEWARE THE HAPPY-CLAPPIES I’m not going to encourage anyone to join a religion, but here’s a theory: the lack of regular singing in the secular world has added to the lure of all those happy-clappy religions like the Hare Krishnas and Hillsong. So unless you want to end up eating nothing but lentils, or worse, tithing a large percentage of your wage to a multinational Christian sect, you better book into a karaoke bar right now. ENJOY WINE AND SONG The main time most of us let our vocal chords rip is after a confidenceboosting drink, or five. And why not? I cannot recommend highly enough the joys of drunken karaoke, whether at a mate’s backyard barbie or in a nice, soundproofed room so you don’t piss off the neighbours. It really is excellent fun. SINGING FOR YOUR TRIBE The other time you’ll catch normally reticent men singing is while they’re watching sport. Sport singing is an ancient form of deep-rooted tribalism and some countries are brilliant at it. Watch the Welsh play rugby and

you’ll hear beautiful harmonies from their supporters, but our own Sydney FC has some cracking songs. In England certain soccer songs are as old as the team - West Ham’s ‘Blowing Bubbles’ has been sung since the 1930s. Others are made up on the spot to express the crowd’s feelings that game, as seen in Birmingham City’s recent taunting chant, “16 years and won f*ck all: Villa, Villa.” SING FOR LIFE According to a report published in the Journal of Music Therapy in 2004, singing boosts our immune system, reduces stress levels and helps us to sleep more soundly. Tom George, a UK choir leader, states, “People recovering from depression, arthritis, surgery, dealing with the effects of cancer and many other ailments find it a real tonic... it should be prescribed.” As Sondheim wrote, “If I cannot fly, let me sing.” Finally, The Unreliable Guide suggests that next time you’re feeling blue just open your mouth and SING! Release your inner diva la la la!


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Sorry about that.

THE DOG ATE MY HOMEWORK... Words Jeremy Ireland, Psychotherapist Picture Kay Nine


have to admit, I found writing for this month’s edition quite challenging. I knew the deadline was looming but I just couldn’t seem to get into gear. Having the World Cup on in the background didn’t help, but the more I tried to motivate myself the more I started to ‘wig-out’. The closer the deadline got the more agitated and stressed I became but still I couldn’t get myself to sit down and write. I’d pace the house, make a cup of tea, check the surf report basically do anything that would distract and keep the task at bay. I started to get angry. What was wrong with me? I was reluctant to call it writer’s block. I wouldn’t call it lack of inspiration either. It felt somehow different to that. In a last-ditch effort to avoid the embarrassing possibility of missing this month’s issue I forced myself to do something. There was no choice. By forcing myself to do something (i.e. the simple act of sitting at the computer) I slowly started to get going. By now I had my topic, soon I’d written my first line, and eventually the ideas began to take form. With the deadline date still ticking down I realised I had been fully ensnared in the net of procrastination. 60 The Beast | August 2018

Procrastination can affect different people in different ways. It could be something simple like putting off mowing the lawn or doing your tax, or perhaps something a little more serious like umming and ahing about getting a health issue dealt with. Maybe it’s something more crippling like not being able to get out of bed in the morning. It should come as no surprise then that the more we procrastinate the worse we feel; indeed, a lack of productivity amplifies self-hatred resulting in further incapacitation. In layman’s terms, extreme procrastination is a ‘paralysis of the will’. In its milder form it can be seen as a minor irritation. So why do we sometimes behave in ways that are not in our best interest when something needs to be done? Well, fear of failure is perhaps the most common reason. This may not apply to our person mowing the lawn, but it might apply to someone who’s considering a change of career. Say, for example, you’ve always fancied yourself as a writer, you’ve written the book, but you are reluctant to have anyone in the publishing world look at it. Why? Maybe it’s easier to keep your identity intact as the person you currently are rather than stick

your neck out to be the person you want to be. If someone reads that book and it gets bad reviews then you deem yourself a failure. Game over. You’re back at square one. Here’s another example, though a little less life changing, perhaps: You’ve always wanted to snowboard but you can’t manage to do that first lesson. Is it your fear of looking like a kook if you fail that stops you from starting, or something else? If you have a low boiling point your tolerance for frustration will suffer. Frustration often leads to anger, even more so if you’re in the habit of comparing reality with an ideal in your head. If you lower the bar and cut yourself a bit of slack – i.e. reduce your expectation – frustration will diminish. Self-handicapping is another popular tool for procrastinators. “The dog ate my homework” or “I set my alarm for PM not AM” are good examples of how to shield yourself from a fail or a perceived lack of ability. This self-handicapping is considered a perceived benefit that provides an excuse for potential failure. Cramming for an exam the night before or being hung-over for a driving test are behavioural examples that demonstrate how we can sabotage our performance in order to provide an excuse for failure. “But how does this get me off the couch when I have zero motivation to do so?” I hear you ask. Well, the exact opposite is the answer. By simply doing something (the action) the inspiration will come, followed by motivation and then by more action. If your front lawn is looking like a small forest, the simple action of getting the mower will inspire you and hence motivate you to actually complete the task. It’s easier said than done, perhaps, but remember that you don’t always have to be in the mood to get something done. The ‘do something’ approach by action first will get you started and the rest will follow. That said, if you truly feel immobile to the point where you are apathetic, anxious and generally overwhelmed, please seek help from your GP, counsellor or mental health professional.


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August 2018 | The Beast 61

Fishing the stones after a big southerly can produce the goods.

THE OCEAN’S TURNING POINT Words Dan Trotter Picture Dan Young-Whitforde


ith the winter westerlies now firmly entrenched in the daily cycle of life, the crisp dark nights are most definitely here to stay. August really marks the turning point when the ocean settles into it’s uniquely winter mood, calm and clear one day and violently rough the next. It’s these calm days immediately after the turbulence of the big southerly swells and weather cells that allow anglers to capitalise on otherwise tough fishing conditions. With too many days of calm weather, the currents come to a halt and the fish get lazy as their metabolisms slow down. Rough 62 The Beast | August 2018

seas, on the other hand, stir up the ocean, smashing barnacles, cunjevoi, crabs and other crustaceans into a plethora of tasty meals. It’s this opportune window that sees the snapper, drummer, tailor, salmon and other predatory fish in the shallows gobbling down a feed. If you can find a day that matches these conditions and you’re able to slip out early in the morning or mid-afternoon, do yourself a favour and grab a mate, some fresh cut baits, and a healthy amount of berley, then find an ocean wash or inshore reef (to anchor up on) and spend a few hours catching a tasty feed.

If bait fishing off the rocks or in the oceanic shallows isn’t your thing, or if you don’t have access to a boat, there are still plenty of fishing options for the enthusiastic angler. For the landlocked fisherperson, the wharves of the harbour can be a great place to spend a weekday afternoon. Find somewhere tucked out of the prevailing wind, work up some berley and fish unweighted baits down the berley trail. Silver trevally are a likely encounter, and if you pin a small live bait just off the bottom there’s every chance of taking down a winter mulloway or prowling John Dory. If you have a boat that can take you offshore, picking the weather window is key to a pleasant day with a high chance of fishing success. At this time of year I love nothing more than a calm day that allows you to wander way out to sea. My first stop is usually the bait grounds for some ‘yakkas’ and ‘slimys’, then it’s a race to beat the tide to one of the deep-water hard reefs that the yellowtail kingfish absolutely love in winter. After a few quick drifts I’ll usually wander off wider in search of bluefin tuna, towing lures through the currents and keeping a keen eye on the sounder and the horizon for signs of life. If I find a patch of deep bait, a flock of oceanic sea birds or a riffle of baitfish on the surface, I know to heed the signs and stay in the area. It might mean waiting for hours on end, but experience has shown that this is a much better option than going off in a search of richer waters. Winter fishing doesn’t necessarily make for the easiest of outings. The mornings can be cold and the fishing tough, but it beats the routine of everyday life and a decent catch is bound to keep you bright-eyed and enthusiastic for much longer than an extra few hours in bed. So if the option comes up, whack on your winter woolies, get your tackle out of the garage, grab a mate and get some fresh sea air into your lungs – you won’t regret it.

AUGUST 2018 TIDE CHART Numbers Bureau of Meteorology Tidal Centre Picture Laura Galvanek MONDAY


• New Moon • First Quarter • Full Moon • Last Quarter 6 0243 0852 1530 2203

1.29 0.52 1.56 0.57

7 0357 0954 1632 2314

1.28 0.50 1.67 0.46

13 0338 0943 1531 2154

0.10 1.56 0.28 1.95

14 0425 1032 1626 2243

0.15 1.57 0.33 1.82

20 0328 0915 1600 2250

1.15 0.63 1.48 0.61

21 0436 1014 1657 2345

1.15 0.64 1.51 0.55

27 0248 0847 1431 2053

0.32 1.41 0.43 1.70

28 0319 0922 1509 2129

0.32 1.43 0.43 1.67

Waiting for the wind to change.



1 0502 1109 1650 2307

2 0540 1152 1737 2348

0.44 1.39 0.61 1.52

8 0508 1.31 1056 0.46 1731 1.79

9 0015 0611 1154 1828

0.33 1.37 0.40 1.91

15 0510 1122 1720 2332



3 0619 0.46 1239 1.40 1830 0.65

4 0036 0704 1330 1933

1.43 0.49 1.43 0.66

10 0110 0707 1250 1921

0.21 1.44 0.34 2.00

11 0200 0800 1345 2013

0.13 1.49 0.29 2.04

16 0555 0.34 1213 1.53 1818 0.50

17 0023 0640 1305 1920

1.48 0.44 1.50 0.58

18 0116 0727 1400 2030

22 0534 1.18 1108 0.61 1746 1.56

23 0030 0621 1156 1830

0.49 1.23 0.57 1.61

24 0109 0701 1238 1908

0.43 1.29 0.52 1.66

25 0144 0738 1317 1944

29 0352 0958 1549 2204

30 0426 1036 1632 2244

0.35 1.48 0.46 1.54

31 0500 1117 1719 2326

0.39 1.49 0.50 1.45

0.41 1.38 0.58 1.60

0.23 1.55 0.41 1.66

0.33 1.46 0.44 1.62


5 0133 0755 1429 2046

1.35 0.51 1.48 0.64

12 0250 0852 1438 2104

0.09 1.54 0.27 2.03

1.33 0.53 1.47 0.63

19 0218 0818 1500 2143

1.21 0.60 1.47 0.64

0.38 1.33 0.48 1.69

26 0215 0813 1354 2019

0.34 1.37 0.45 1.71

The safest image to accompany this article.

LET'S TALK ABOUT THE VAGINA Words Matty Silver, Sex Therapist Picture Fanny Lips


hy is it that even as adults we struggle so hard with the names of our genitals? Too many parents don’t teach their children the correct names. The penis may be called a willie, weewee, doodle, little noodle, ding-a-ling, etc. Believe it or not there are over 100 adult names for the penis. For girls it’s not much better: nooni, woo-woo, mini, muffin, kitty, little girl parts or, worst of all, the front bottom. You’d be surprised how many adult women still refer to their private parts as ‘down there’ when they come to see me. The word ‘vagina’ first hit the headlines in 1996 when Eve Ensler wrote and starred in a play called The Vagina Monologues, which was staged all over the world and included a successful run in Australia. The play’s recurring theme is the vagina as a tool of female empowerment. But now, after all those years, just when people are finally - very slowly - getting used to the word 64 The Beast | August 2018

vagina, there is another problem. Some academics, educators, feminists and politically correct women are lecturing us that we shouldn’t use the word vagina but rather the word ‘vulva’. We have to be ‘vulva conscious’! I admit it’s confusing. If you take a mirror and look at your genitals you will see the external organs the pubic mound, the labia (inner and outer lips), the clitoris and the external openings of the urethra and vagina. And, yes, these outer parts are called the vulva. The vagina is the canal behind the vaginal opening. Is it too much of an assumption to think most people are aware that the vagina is inside the body? One of the reasons given for this latest lecture is the difficulty women may have when they seek medical help and don’t know how to name the right body part to their GP. I can’t think of many ailments women may suffer from that have to do with the vulva. If they have

a pap smear they have an internal vaginal examination. If they suffer from discharge or vaginal infections, or have an STI, they are mostly present inside the vagina. The only time patients would ask their doctor to check their vulval parts these days is when they believe their labia are too big or ugly and they would like to have labiaplasty. This surgery can have damaging after-effects such as infection, scarring and painful sex; it can even destroy nerve endings and sensory receptors of the labia minora. When I talk to my clients I only use the words ‘vagina’ and ‘clitoris’. Most heterosexual intercourse is ‘penis-into-vagina’ sex, and there is sex with fingers or toys in the vagina. Most people know where the clitoris is situated. Tampons are put into vaginas. Babies are pushed out of them. I could go on! So why should we change our language? Now that women are finally getting used to saying the word vagina, why confuse them?

Sydney’s abandoned dogs and cats will soon have a new home thanks to the Berejiklian government In 2015 Sydney Dogs and Cats’ Home sought my help to find them land for a new, larger shelter, so even more of our homeless furry friends can live in safety as they await adoption.

Follow me


After a long search, I’ve secured them a 50-year lease on Crown land in Kurnell. I want to see an end to the needless euthanising of healthy animals. Since 1946 SDCH has saved the lives of countless companion animals by sheltering and finding them loving new homes.


Making a difference Bruce Notley-Smith MP State Member for Coogee

Ph 02 9398 1822 @bnotleysmithmp

Authorised by Bruce Notley-Smith MP, 15/53 Frenchmans Road, Randwick, using parliamentary entitlements

August 2018 | The Beast 65

These blokes are going to be hard to beat.

BLEDISLOE BLOWS Words Alasdair McClintock Picture Kieran Read


he old expression goes that rugby union is “the game they play in heaven”. This is apt, because the game is very nearly dead to me. It currently remains on life support, waiting for me to have a quick glance at the Last Will and Testament before I lean over and pull the plug, whispering gently, “You did this to yourself.” It went into cardiac arrest in Sydney on June 23, in the 80th minute of the Australia versus Ireland match. When, instead of the crowd being able to spontaneously celebrate a great victory by a fantastic Irish team against a brave Wallabies outfit, 50,000 people and the six people who watched it at home - had to sit through several minutes of a painful video review before they ultimately made the wrong decision and called the game over. To that point the series had been exactly what rugby needed in this country, but like your perennially single mate, they got to the

66 The Beast | August 2018

third date and did something so profoundly stupid that you begin to question if they really do want to ever get laid again. Maybe they don’t. Maybe they’re asexual. Which is fine if they are, but they can’t expect me to go out and buy their asexual pornography, can they? I’m just not interested. Which brings us to the Bledisloe Cup. Those wretched bastards from across the ditch, raiding us once again to pilfer (from an offside position) one of the only two trophies Australian rugby fans have ever cared about. Normally I would be excited, but it’s hard to feel anything after repeated referrals to a TMO, who takes so long to make a questionable decision I can only conclude they have turned the official replay room into a hot-box. I will watch the game, but I know I shouldn’t. It’s like the ex you keep going back to even though you know they are a prick, but they did this thing with their

tongue one time and it’s haunted you ever since. You’re willing to put up with a couple of terrible hours on the off chance you’ll experience it once again. In reality, all that will happen is you’ll go home, out of pocket and painfully frustrated, wondering if you completely imagined those fleeting moments of surreal pleasure. It’s not the Wallabies losing that bothers me, either. I don’t mind it, if the game is good. Rugby, at its finest, is a beautiful thing to behold. It sends shivers down my spine just thinking about it. It’s why I haven’t pulled the plug and administered the pillow (just to be completely sure the job is done) yet. I long for it to bound free from its invalid state and fill my heart with the kind of joy that a dog feels when it sees its owner. If any side can do this, it’s those genetically gifted cultist freaks from New Zealand. Only time will tell, but the strange thing is I think I will be happy either way.

Randwick Council has always had a passion for the environment and doing all we can to look after it for future generations. I’m delighted to say that operations and events.

We are also developing a waste education program to assist and encourage

inspire us all with his talk on Energy Future, so I hope you’ll join us. Councillor Lindsay Shurey Mayor of Randwick 1 August

4 August

8 August

Library After Dark: Tabletop Games

Conquer Cryptic Crosswords

The Author Talks: An Evening with Jamelle Wells

Belmore Road, Randwick

Belmore Road, Randwick

12 August

18 August

1 September

Gordon’s Bay Reserve Bushcare

Why Don’t They Do What I Say? Setting Limits Without Timeout

Nursery Spring Sale

Gordon’s Bay Reserve

Belmore Road, Randwick

Belmore Road, Randwick

1300 722 542

How? We could take some tips from the increasingly popular ‘forest bathing’ in Japan, or shinrinyoku, by mindfully connecting with nature through our senses. As eco-philosopher David Abram writes: “The senses are what is most wild in us. Apart from breathing and eating, the senses are our most intimate link with the living land, the primary way that the earth has of influencing our mood and guiding our actions.” Council’s Urban Ecology Coordinator Sus Stevens says, “To really get the full benefits, we need to fully experience whatever is out there.” So next time you’re out and about, give this mindful practice a go:

Put your bloody phone away.

WHY GETTING YOUR NATURE FIX MAKES GOOD SENSE Words Nicola Saltman - Sustainable Communities, Waverley Council Picture Monique Phipps


hen was the last time you hung out in nature and felt bad? Like, um, never? It’s near impossible to feel crap in the wilderness (unless you happen to get stuck up a cliff-face without a rope). Nature’s a place where we can unwind, leave the hectic city behind, and get back to basics. It makes us feel good. In fact, connecting with the ‘wild’, even for a short time in an urban patch of bushland, has been proven to make us healthier and happier. There’s a growing body of evidence which shows that nature is actually necessary for our overall wellbeing. It’s no wonder why, in a recent community survey, you guys said that ‘love for nature’ is a top reason for living in this area. Clifftop walks and jaw-dropping ocean views are hard to beat in this neck of the woods. 68 The Beast | August 2018

Benefits from time spent in nature are hard to ignore: • Improves memory and mood • Improves mental and physical health • Enhances focus • Builds community and family bonds • Supports creativity and problem solving • Helps sick people get better faster • Reduces disruptive behaviour • Relieves stress and reduces anxiety With the digital age (read: everstuck-to-our-devices-age) and projections that 66 per cent of the world’s population will be living in cities by the year 2050, there’s even more reason to intentionally switch off and go bush from time to time.

• Switch off the phone and stash it in your pocket (if you can’t leave it at home). • Make it your intention to observe how you feel. • Touch the soft beach sand, leaves, rocks, bark. Sit down on the grass. Take off your shoes to feel the earth under your feet and toes. • Feel the breeze and sun on your skin. • Look around - at the flowers (wattles are in bloom), blue sky, ocean, plants and whales. • Listen to the crunching of dry leaves under your feet, the birds singing and the wind in the trees. Try periods of silence on longer walks with friends. • Taste the salty air coming off the ocean. • Smell the flowers, the air after first rain. • Take your time. Breathe. Let it all in. With all the goodness to experience, let’s make getting back to nature second nature. You can try a forest therapy walk, yoga and nature immersion activities for free at the Bronte National Tree Day on Sunday, July 29 from 9am-1pm. Book at

MAYOR‘S MESSAGE Waverley Community Strategic Plan 2018–29 At the June Council meeting last week, we adopted the new Waverley Community Strategic Plan 2018–29. This plan outlines the community’s vision – your vision for us – and what our priorities over the next 11 years will be. This milestone follows an extensive community consultation and engagement program which commenced after Council elections in September last year. The draft Plan was then placed on public exhibition for 28 days in May 2018. We asked you to tell us if the vision and strategies contained in the Plan represent your aspirations for Waverley. Thank you to everyone who took the time to tell us your thoughts. To view the Plan visit

Changes to parking Following our large community consultation on parking, we’re starting to implement the changes residents wanted to see. From August, we are introducing 15-minute ‘drop-in’ zones in shopping areas in and around Bondi Junction, Charing Cross and Bondi Beach. Parking meters in the Bondi Junction commercial area are also now switched off at 6pm each day to re-invigorate business in the evenings. From 1 July, we removed the fee for the first residential parking permit, saving the average resident $45 each year. The changes will have a big impact on how people run errands and go about their day-to-day lives.

John Wakefield, Mayor of Waverley CUSTOMER SERVICE CENTRE 55 Spring Street, Bondi Junction NSW 2022 PO Box 9, Bondi Junction NSW 1355 PHONE 9083 8000 WEB

Events Bronte National Tree Day Sunday 29 July, 9am–1pm Bronte Park, Bronte This National Tree Day we’ve got a range of nature immersion activities for all ages happening in Bronte Park. Immerse yourself in a forest therapy walk, take in a yoga session, join a guided nature walk, or get creative with nature craft. You can also get information and advice on how to create a habitat in your garden and other sustainability tips from Council’s Second Nature Team and meet with representatives from Greater Sydney Landcare. Book: nationaltreedaybronte.

International Cat Day: Meet the Author – Philippa Sandall Thursday 9 August, 6.30–8pm Waverley Library, 32–48 Denison Street, Bondi Junction Cat lovers are invited to this very special author talk by Philippa Sandall and illustrator Ad Long for International Cat Day. Their new book Seafurrers; The ships’ cats who lapped and mapped the world will entertain you with swashbuckling tales of sea adventures as well as a deft genealogy of cat-human friendship. Book: meet-the-authorphilippasandall-with-seafurrers-theships-cats-who-lapped-andmapped-the-worldtickets-45008557808.

For more event info visit our website

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A LONG RIDE AROUND ROTTNEST ISLAND Words and Pictures The Bondi Travel Bug


n 1696, Dutch explorer Willem de Vlamingh came across an island off the Western Australian coast and, after brief exploration, was astounded to see enormous rats running rampant. As such, the newly discovered island was aptly named ‘t Eylandt ‘t Rottenest, which in English translates to Rats’ Nest Island. Little did de Vlamingh know that these giant rats were actually quokkas, the cute little marsupials that are found only on a few islands off Western Australia. To get to Rottnest Island you can fly, take your own boat or, like us, jump on a ferry from Fremantle, which is a pleasant 30-minute journey away. Rottnest Island is 11 kilometres long and 4.5 kilometres across at its widest point, and is a haven for wildlife. It is surrounded by secluded bays and pristine beaches and is a snorkelling, swimming, surfing, hiking and pushbikeriding haven. As soon as we arrived on the island we claimed our pushbikes, which were supplied by Great Southern Rail, a Rottnest Island partner that organises complete island packages including ferry transfers, pushbike hire and accommodation. Bikes can also be hired on arrival at the island. Cycling and walking are the main forms of transport on ‘Rotto’ as no cars are permitted, aside from buses and essential services vehicles. The ride from the wharf to our accommodation at Karma Rottnest took only a few minutes and along the way we saw our first quokka. We soon realised that the cute and friendly little macropods are quite conspicuous, happily foraging for food even in the island’s busiest locations. The island is home to over 10,000 quokkas, so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding one for that special furry ‘quokka selfie’. While they’re generally known as a 70 The Beast | August 2018

nocturnal mammal and considered to be more active and prominent at night, we quickly found out they can be seen at any time of the day. Welcome to ‘Quokknest’ Island, I thought to myself ! With only one night and two days on the island, time was at a premium, so after unloading our bags we immediately went for our first island ride. The Karma Rottnest is centrally located and an array of cafes and restaurants, a general store, a pub and various beaches are only moments walking distance away. At the first beach we visited we were greeted by a fever of inquisitive local stingrays, which cruised in to check us out before vanishing back into the blue abyss.

It was like we had fallen down Alice in Wonderland’s rabbit hole, such were the beauty and vivid colours of the beach and bay upon which it lies. Some of the bike riding is quite challenging due to the island’s undulating topography (and too many breakfast buffets on my behalf ), but there’s a very handy hop-on/hop-off bus service that traverses the length of the island if the legs begin to get weary. We rode our bikes for a couple hours and ended up at Bathurst Lighthouse, where we met some more of the local quokkas that were on hand to greet us, before turning around and heading home before the sun set. The island is so serene that we slept like babies and were up early the next morning to do a 90-minute ‘Adventure Rottnest’ island circumnavigation boat tour, upon which we got to see the beaches that we’d cycle to later in the day from a different perspective. The

boat tour was thrilling and a highlight of our stay. The tour took us to rugged coastal coves and inlets that are only accessible by boat, where we were lucky enough to see New Zealand fur seal colonies and massive sluggish sea lions strewn across isolated beaches that they shared only with ospreys and a variety of other smaller birds. Finding a secluded beach on the island is definitely not a hassle as there are no fewer than 63 beaches and 20 bays to choose from. While we were on the boat we observed the stunning Parker Point and Little Salmon Bay for the first time. Both were only about five kilometres away from our resort and as soon as we disembarked from the boat we quickly arranged a picnic lunch and cycled back to Little Salmon Bay. It was like we had fallen down Alice in Wonderland’s rabbit hole, such were the beauty and vivid colours of the beach and bay upon which it lies. Here we swam, ate, drank, sunbaked and drank some more until the late afternoon sun started to melt into the Indian Ocean. Coming from Australia’s eastern coast, it’s still breathtaking and fascinating to watch the sun setting over the ocean. I imagine that if the explorer Willem de Vlamingh were to revisit Rottnest Island today he’d be happy to see that it is just as beautiful as it was when he stumbled upon it all those years ago. Where to stay Karma Rottnest (08) 9292 5161 How to get there Rottnest Island Express 1300 467 688 Vicky Gilden at Rose Bay Travel (02) 9371 8166

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ungover and battling was not how I planned to enjoy my first dining experience at the illustrious Icebergs Dining Room and Bar, but after a school-night salad turned into a booze-filled rampage culminating in reggaeton dancing at Bondi Junction until the wee hours of the next morning, that was the reality of my situation. Nevertheless, I dragged myself the gruelling 300 metres from my house to Bondi Icebergs. Upon arrival, my dining companion and I were greeted by the friendly staff and offered a seat and a drink at the bar. This was the moment of truth. Should I order a full strength coke and hope that solved the problem, or grow up and realise the only thing that would even me out at this stage was another drink? I opted for the latter and ordered an Aperol Spritz (okay, two). After a moment spent enjoying the glorious panoramic view of Bondi Beach below, we were taken to our table to sample the Icebergs’ Pranzo Classico lunch menu. This lunchtime offer runs from Monday to Thursday until August 9 so you’ll have to move quickly. For 76 The Beast | August 2018

$60 you get to enjoy a two-course meal in one of Sydney’s most desirable and famous locations. The menu offers a choice between two starters (antipasti) and two mains (secondi). You then have the option of adding sides to your meal. We were given a tasting menu of all the options including the additional sides, which was hugely appreciated considering our circumstances. The antipasti consisted of a choice between freshly shucked oysters with a red wine and black pepper vinaigrette, and a beetroot and goats curd salad with radicchio and fennel. I opted for the beetroot salad, beautifully presented to the extent that I didn’t want to ruin it by digging in. The goats curd provided a richness that was wonderfully balanced by the acidity of the beetroot and the contrasting fennel. Rich yet also light and refreshing, it was the perfect starter. My companion wolfed down the oysters; I sensed her satisfaction. The secondi offers a choice between a 200-gram Signature Olsson’s salt-crusted boneless rib

eye steak with rocket and mustard, or pappardelle with scampi, mussels, fish, tomato and basil. Again, both were beautifully presented. The steak was soft and tender and the pasta was rich and creamy yet not too heavy. The sides include a choice of fries, salad or a helping of mashed potato so delightfully creamy that I initially thought it was some kind of thick buttery dip. We were also treated to something from the dessert menu. I ordered the Cioccolato e Olio d’Oliva, a rich chocolate mousse with olive oil sorbet and olive caramel crisp. It was the most lavish dessert I’ve had this decade, boasting a blend of textures over several layers and decorated with golden cubes. Words don’t do it justice. All in all, the Pranzo Classico menu is perfect for a mid-week treat or a lunchtime meeting with someone you’d like to impress. The service is fantastic and offers that extra bit of fancyness. The cuisine on offer celebrates the best of Australian produce from the NSW Sapphire Coast, Queensland’s Darling Downs, South Australia and WA. It’s premium quality food that fills you up just the right amount for lunch. Admittedly, you wouldn’t want to waste this menu on a hangover, but the good news is that it still holds up either way! Icebergs Dining Room and Bar Address 1 Notts Ave, Bondi Beach Facebook IcebergsDiningOnBondiBeach Instagram @icebergsdiningroomandbar Phone 9365 9000 Dining Room Lunch: Mon-Sun 12pm-late; Dinner: Mon-Sun 6.30pm-late; Brunch: Sun 10am12pm Bar Mon-Sat 12pm12am; Sun 12pm-10pm Icebergs Terrace Sat-Sun 12pm-6pm (weather permitting) Prices Check the website Cards Accepted Visa, Mastercard, Amex, Diners, Eftpos Licensed Yes


A healthy bowl to warm your soul.

LENTIL, ZUCCHINI AND MINT SOUP Recipe and Picture Catherine Noonan


his is one of several recipes that we have come to love in our house. It’s a perfectly easy and soul-warming winter soup that has only four ingredients, yet a sophisticated flavour that suggests otherwise. I’ve used French-style green lentils, grown in the Wimmera region of Victoria. These little beauties originate from those grown in Puy, France and are renowned for their deep nutty flavour and for holding their shape when cooked. Better yet, they don’t need pre-soaking, but being a creature of habit I can’t help but pre-soak my lentils. You don’t need to do it overnight, just a couple of hours will do the trick. I’ve added finely chopped zucchini to enhance the green factor and boost volume. Zucchini is mild in flavour but it does well to add bulk and to carry the flavour of the homemade chicken broth, which no quality soup can do without. To enhance the flavour and finish the soup, I've added freshly picked mint leaves. Mint is renowned for being a great match to

78 The Beast | August 2018

both French lentils and zucchini, so it was a no-brainer herb of choice in this instance and I’m sure you'll agree when you taste it. This recipe only takes around five minutes to prepare and 20 minutes to cook, and it will serve a young family of four or two hungry men. It’s also great for toddlers and babies starting solids. TOOLS Chopping board and knife Large cast iron soup pot and wooden spoon Stick blender or similar (optional) INGREDIENTS 1 cup French-style fine green lentils (I use Mount Zero lentils) 2 large zucchinis 1 litre chicken broth/stock 1 handful fresh mint, finely chopped Celtic sea salt to taste METHOD 1. To make your lentil, zucchini and mint soup, firstly chop the zucchinis finely and set aside;

2. Rinse your fine green lentils, whether pre-soaked or not, and set aside; 3. In a large cast iron soup pot, add the chicken broth and bring to a gentle simmer; 4. Add the lentils and cook, simmering for 10 minutes; 5. Add the chopped zucchini and cook for a further 10 minutes until both the lentils and zucchini are nice and tender; 6. Stir through the handful of finely chopped mint leaves and season with Celtic sea salt; 7. If you prefer a smoother consistency, blend with a stick blender or in a standard blender before serving warm. Cath Noonan is a self-confessed health-foodie, recipe creator, and nutrition student, as well as the founder of healthy food blog, I Heart Scratch. Check out the delicious food pics on her Instagram account, @i_heart_scratch, and find more recipes by visiting

The Young Guns of Wine.

YOUNG GUN OF WINE AWARDS Words and Picture Alex Russell Twitter @ozwineguy


here are loads of wine awards shows these days, but this one is a personal favourite of mine. It’s been going since 2007 and the roll call of previous winners features some of the best names in the business. The name pretty much says it all. You can see the list of previous winners by visiting www. I started writing some of my favourites in this article before realising I was listing just about everyone anyway! THIS YEAR'S FINALISTS Damon Koerner, Koerner Wine David Geyer, Geyer Wine Co Gilli and Paul Lipscombe, Sailor Seeks Horse Hamish Young, Mada Wines Jonathan Hughes, Newstone Kate Morgan, Ipso Facto Wines Melanie Chester, Sutton Grange Winery Nicolas Peterkin, L.A.S. Vino Ricky Evans, Two Tonne Tasmania Rob Mack, Aphelion Sean Crinion, Dappled Wines Yoko and Andries Mostert, Brave New Wine

There are a few awards available in this competition. There’s a ‘Best New Act’ award, along with a ‘Winemaker’s Choice’ and ‘People’s Choice’, plus a ‘Danger Zone’ award for a particularly interesting wine, rather than a winery or winemaker per se. Finally, the big one is the ‘Young Gun of Wine’ award. The ‘Danger Zone’ award went to the 2017 Lark Hill Grüner Veltliner. Chris Carpenter at Lark Hill was awarded this for taking a risk with Grüner, which is a tough grape to get right but when you do it’s sensational. There are only a few doing it in Australia. Melanie Chester at Sutton Grange Winery picked up the ‘People’s Choice’. This is decided by the public at two tasting events in Sydney and Melbourne. Melanie says their wines are grown and made “to be shared and enjoyed with the people you love”, which is pretty much my philosophy with wine too. I’m adding these to my buying list. ‘Winemaker’s Choice’ went to Gilli and Paul Lipscombe at Sailor Seeks Horse. The winemakers who

vote on this award are the other finalists. Your peers voting on your wines, and voting you their favourite, has to be an incredible feeling, keeping in mind that these are some very exciting winemaking peers so it’s particularly special. ‘Best New Act’ went to Jonathan Hughes at Mewstone. The ‘Best New Act’ award is often one to watch. Last year’s winner of the ‘Best New Act’ was Rob Mack and Aphelion. This year, Rob took out the ‘Young Gun of Wine’ award. It’s not a small deal, this award, purely because of the competition in the field. Rob paid tribute to the other finalists, but also to the creativity going on in McLaren Vale at the moment. He’s spot on - there are some cracking wineries popping up there. It’s well worth a visit next time you’re in Adelaide. All of these are worth popping onto your ‘to buy’ list, including those that didn’t win this time around. Simply look back at some of the names who haven’t won in previous years and where they are now and you’ll see what’s to come. August 2018 | The Beast 79

LUCA BRASI Stay Label Cooking Vinyl Australia Reviewer Alasdair McClintock Rating Tasmania has long been the butt of jokes, but a few good things of note have been happening down there lately: Dark Mofo, MONA, nude winter swims, Luca Brasi... I think that’s it. Luca Brasi have been around forever, and while they’ve had a few hits, they’ve yet to nail it on the album front. Until now. Hot dog! This is a beauty. Listen to it. Love it. Yearn for it. Melodic punk is not for everyone, but then again, neither is chocolate, which proves the existence of psychopaths if nothing else. I’m going out on a limb and putting this in the top five Australian albums of the year.

JACK RIVER Sugar Mountain

FILM REVIEW TITLE The Breaker Upperers GENRE Comedy REVIEWER Linda Heller-Salvador Falling in love and breaking-up has never been as absurd or cringingly funny as when portrayed by New Zealand comedians Madeleine Sami and Jackie van Beek, who both co-wrote, directed and acted in this off-beat depiction of the ins and outs of relationships. After realising they were dating the same slimy two-timing man, Mel (Madeleine Sami) and Jen ( Jackie van Beek) set up an ‘uncoupling’ service; for a fee they would break up the relationships of those people unable to do it themselves. The scenarios that follow are wonderfully creative, wincingly awkward and stupidly funny in all the best possible ways, but when Mel falls for Jordan ( James Rolleston), a cute, young and naïvely stupid client, their unbreakable friendship becomes severely tested and the morals of their business plan are questioned. The Breaker Upperers is a film that will definitely divide audiences. If you’re adverse to ‘a little colourful language’, hard to please or overly serious you should probably avoid this film. On the other hand, if you like the tongue-in-cheek side of life, where silly immature things make you giggle, chortle, guffaw and laugh-out-loud, then this film should be right up your alley. 80 The Beast | August 2018

Label Hopeless Utopian Reviewer Alasdair McClintock Rating Do you ever walk into a bar and know immediately you shouldn’t be there? It’s not your scene, you’re too old and you don’t care about fashion, but you still feel you should linger for a while and give it a chance. I felt like this listening to Jack River. I shouldn’t be reviewing it. When I read ‘singer/songwriter’ I assumed I was getting a nice acoustic folk album, but instead it was like I got invited into a teenage girl’s bedroom and sat there uncomfortably for 40 minutes, desperately hoping her parents didn’t come home and get the wrong idea.

THE CARTERS Everything Is Love Label Roc Nation Reviewer Alasdair McClintock Rating Two of the world’s most overrated people have unsurprisingly dropped a numbingly underwhelming album, to huge acclaim. When life gave Beyoncé lemons, she made Lemonade, which was great, but I can only assume someone dropped a huge bag of oats on the porch of one of their many mansions this time, because this is gruel. The best part of the entire album is when they reference Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre. And when I say reference, I mean repeat the ‘Still’ chorus verbatim. Could they not think of their own hook? Judging from the rest of their album, no, they couldn’t.




















ACROSS 1. Main actor of It’s a Wonderful Life and Rear Window (5,7) 5. Arthur’s sister from Hey Arthur (1,1) 7. Little ... Peep (2) 8. Animated movie Monsters ... (3) 10. Invention in the movie Hudsucker Proxy, ... Hoop (4) 11. A clumsy, unintelligent person (3) 12. 007 is a secret ... (5) 13. Spinoff from Buffy the Vampire Slayer (5) 14. Brokeback ... (8) 15. A spoiler often refers to revealing how a book, movie or TV show ... (5) 17. Main actor in Citizen Kane, ... Welles (5) 19. Actor who had a 26-year relationship with Katharine Hepburn

without divorcing his wife (7,5) DOWN 1. English actress from The Sound of Music and Mary Poppins (5,7) 2. Seth Rogen and Jonah Hill movie This is the ... (3) 3. ... Framed Roger Rabbit (3) 4. Male stripper film before Magic Mike (3,4,5) 6. Bugs Bunny’s catch phrase (5,2,3) 7. Song used in Beetlejuice that is also a sunscreen brand (6,4) 9. Eric Clapton was a band member of this group (5) 11. Loud piano often used in Christopher Nolan’s movie scores (5) 16. Female deer (3) 18. The majority of Life of Pi takes place on the ... (3)

TRIVIAL TRIVIA Words Cameron Anderson Picture Ben Daniels Instagram @bendanielsphotos 1. Which Australian played James Bond in the 1969 film On Her Majesty’s Secret Service? 2. Which team will LeBron James play for in the 2018-2019 season of the NBA? 3. What is another name for the city of Peking?

4. Which US president was a former Hollywood actor? 5. What stands on the most eastern point of Australia? 6. Which legendary Australian won the Gold Logie for 2018? 7. What is Spam (the tinned meat) supposedly short for?

8. Who started writing Frankenstein when they were only 18 years old? 9. Who was the goddess of speed, strength and victory? 10. Which Inner West suburb, formerly known as Kingston, was Harold Holt born in?

Going deep. August 2018 | The Beast 81

LIBRA SEP 24-OCT 23 Don’t be that person who fills up the petrol tank before the light even comes on. It’s time to start living more dangerously.

PISCES FEB 20-MAR 20 Flatulence is a genuine medical condition, so rather than being embarrassed by your farts, start using them to gain sympathy.

SCORPIO OCT 24-NOV 22 Donning activewear isn’t going to convince anyone that you actually exercise. Your formless, flabby rig will make absolutely sure of that.

ARIES MAR 21-APR 20 Without ever discovering its origin, this month you will discover a steaming fresh turd on your bathroom floor.

SAGITTARIUS NOV 23-DEC 21 If you’re wondering why you keep waking up so horny in the middle of the night, it could have something to do with your new neighbour.

TAURUS APR 21-MAY 21 If you hate your job, your boss and your colleagues, and don’t even really like your friends, there’s a good chance that you’re a massive c**t.

LEO JUL 23-AUG 22 Your privileged upbringing has made you totally oblivious to the average person and the issues they face, so stop pretending to care.

CAPRICORN DEC 22-JAN 20 Stop referring to yourself as a ‘dog person’. You’re not; you just struggle to make human friends so you’ve had to settle for animals.

GEMINI MAY 22-JUN 21 Never ever admit to being wrong, because right up until the moment you admit that you’re wrong, you’re right. Think about that.

VIRGO AUG 23-SEP 23 Identifying and attacking the faults in others is much easier than addressing the flaws you see in yourself, which is why you do it.

AQUARIUS JAN 21-FEB 19 If your nose is itchy, you scratch it. Why should different rules apply to your privates? If your junk is itchy, have a fiddle for f*ck’s sake.

CANCER JUN 22-JUL 22 The best sunrises generally take place when you sleep in, so do all of the genuine early risers a favour and stay in bed.

STAR SIGNS Words Beardy from Hell

TRIVIAL TRIVIA SOLUTIONS 1. George Lazenby 2. Los Angeles Lakers 3. Beijing 4. Ronald Reagan 5. Cape Byron Lighthouse 6. Grant Denyer 7. Spiced Ham 8. Mary Shelley 9. Nike 10. Stanmore

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The Beast - August 2018  

The August 2018 edition of The Beast featuring Dr Charlie Teo...

The Beast - August 2018  

The August 2018 edition of The Beast featuring Dr Charlie Teo...