PATRONS ONLY - ATTACK BOOKS!

Attack! Books were doing the rounds at the turn of the millennium, back when I was wearing highly flammable clothes and poncing about living in my dad's back shed larging it up like an emo Hugh Hefner.

I discovered the imprint in early 2018, just around the time I was getting serious about putting Home Brewed together.

The books looked just the ticket, in theory.

PATRONS ONLY - BEHIND THE SCENES AT THE ALP POLICY RETREAT

ALP post-election policy meet up, Ablo’s man-cave, Marrickville.

The scene: it’s your standard wood laminate lined back shed situation. 

Old Picture Magazine, Australasian Post and CarToons pin ups festoon the walls. There’s an old foamcore Red Eye Records sign hung over the bar, which is stocked exclusively with Tooheys New. Ablo’s wheels of steel are dormant on the bar, mixing headphones perched on top of some truly egregious BOSE woofers.

Joel Fitzgibbons (absent) has positioned a cardboard standee of Acca Dacca’s Angus Young with his dacks down on top of one of the Razorback pinnies next to the Happy Hour Tiki Bar.

PATRONS ONLY - BOOTS ON THE GROUND

Remember how quickly the world slipped past, and now you’re on the cusp of 42, it’s 2019 and Ridley Scott’s dystopia looks positively cuddly, considering the very real prognostications for climate calamity by 2050 - just another quick 30 year jump, maybe less - being made by, oh, 97% of scientists globally?

PATRONS ONLY - FARGO ROCK CITY

Imagine, if you will, growing up in isolated, pre-internet far western NSW.

So isolated that the closest capital city, 500ks away, is Adelaide, and not the actual capital delineated by that future spear-cushion fuckwit James Cook back in 1770.

That's Sydney, for the record, which is a lazy 1200ks east of Broken Hill, which, of course, I am talking about, because you're lovely and know me well.

PATRONS ONLY - UNEXPECTED RAINBOW IN OUTBACK AUSTRALIA

Here's a piece on marriage equality I wrote for the Uniting Church back in 2016, more than a year before the plebiscite finally happened.

Sadly, we're stuck with the mob who made the process so tortuous, and who are now emboldened to continue exercising their 'religious freedoms' dog whistling to bigots.

Still, activism got marriage equality over the line, eventually, and there are plenty of pressing issues on the agenda now, more than ever. 

Here's to a spot of optimism, eh?

PATRONS ONLY - ALTARED CONSCIOUSNESS

The Uniting Church, VicTas, kindly footed the bill to send me on a jaunt through Tassie covering the Unconscious Collective's 'Crossings' project a couple of years back. This was my second feature for their monthly newspaper, 'Crosslight', which just goes to show you really just don't know where this wacky thing we call 'life' is going to lead you next.

PATRONS ONLY - THOR RAGNAROK

At the collapsing core — the Devil’s Anus, if you will — of Thor: Ragnarok beats the amiably daggy heart of Kiwi director Taika Waititi.

Waititi’s previous flicks Boy, Eagle vs Shark, What We Do In the Shadows and Hunt for the Wilderpeople are all exercises in offbeat, low key charm.

PATRONS ONLY - COOKED

"... Bouganvilleans believe the land is like the skin on your hand. You inherit it, and it is your duty to pass it on to your children in as good a condition as, or better than, that in which you received it."Raphael Bele, 1969

I watched the election results ooze in with our seven month old passed out on my lap.

The overdue demise of Toney, the chief architect of the last decade’s worth of general rot, was hardly an effective salve, given the circumstances.

PATRONS ONLY - COLLATERAL DAMAGE

I picked up my copy of Collateral Damage: The Zodiac Mindwarp American Tour Diaries from the late, lamented Polyester Books on Brunswick Street, Fitzroy in 2004.

Ever the savvy economic manager, I dropped ten percent of the 500 bucks I’d earned (at roughly $7.50 an hour) making my mates Neon’s debut clip for a major label on this and Fucked By Rock.

TONY MARTIN’S DEADLY KERFUFFLE

CAST your mind back to 2006.

The Australian twenty four hour news cycle was in its infancy - scuttlebutt, innuendo, hearsay, grossly ill-informed speculation and flat out bullshit travelled at much slower speeds.

It was a gentler, simpler time of Blackberrys, Sky News and anti-terror fridge magnets.

BLUNT: BLADE RUNNER 2049

In 1981, Scott directed Blade Runner, a vexing, iconic work of noirish science fiction adapted from Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, a novel by author Philip K Dick.

BENJAMIN LAW'S MORAL PANIC 101

AS I prepare this review, the Coalition government’s same-sex marriage postal survey is entering its second week.

The Australian Christian Lobby, led by Lyle Shelton, is presently staging a ‘no’ campaign launch in Adelaide, the City of Churches.

RUSSELL BRAND'S RECOVERY: FREEDOM FROM OUR ADDICTIONS

Recovery: Freedom From Our Addictions is Brand’s fourth book. The author’s first two efforts were autobiographies exploring his childhood and ascent to fame. Both were florid, charmingly written insights into the pathologies behind Brand’s self-destructive lusts. His third book, REVOLution, focused on political activism during the lead up to the UK’s 2015 General Election, and is further illustrative of the author’s self-admitted Messiah complex.

HELEN RAZER'S TOTAL PROPAGANDA!

EIGHT rich, old, white dudes control more wealth than the poorest 50% of people on planet Earth.

That’s a depressingly slight percentage of the vaunted 1% which benefited from the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) and birthed the Occupy movement.

TELLING TALE: THE HANDMAID'S TALE (S1)

Based on Margaret Atwood’s 1985 novel, The Handmaid’s Tale is set in the Republic of Gilead, a near-future dystopia, which we eventually surmise is the United States of America subsumed by a theocratic, patriarchal police state.

BRAKING BAD: BABY DRIVER

AS recent Hollywood legend goes, Baby Driver director Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead) dreamt up his film’s high concept as a student in the mid ‘90s. Moved by the garage rock bombast of the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion’s (JSBX) 1994 single ‘Bell Bottoms’, Wright envisioned a muscular, Bullitt-style car-chase scene set to the track’s primal thrust.

DAVID MARR'S THE WHITE QUEEN

IN his seventh Quarterly Essay, The White Queen - One Nation and the Politics of Race, journalist David Marr examines Pauline Hanson and One Nation’s re-emergence in our current global political context.

KNOCKING RELIGION: THE BOOK OF MORMON

RELIGIOUS satire has existed for millennia, pre-dating Christianity itself.

From the work of Greek playwright Aristophanes - circa 400BC -  through to last year’s ribald Seth Rogen animated comedy Sausage Party, the tradition of art questioning belief is fundamental to humanity’s ongoing spiritual evolution.