Saturday, February 10, 2024

Traffic Scandal

Political Advisor: Minister, your voters are sick of being stuck in traffic. Your government needs to add more lanes to the motorway or build a new one.

Minister: I believe in progress. We will add more lanes.

Skip forward a few years.

Political Advisor: Minister, the new traffic lanes we last built quickly filled up and now we congestion again and the voters are not happy.  

Minister: We will build a free flowing road intersection and cleverly connect all roads above. Let's call it an interchange.

And so under the former conservative government, traffic problems were solved once and for all with the completion of the AU$4 billion Sydney's Rozelle Interchange.

Minister: So Political Advisor, $4 million was so well spent to fix the traffic problem.

Political Advisor: Yes Minister. There are a few minor issues, but they will be sorted out. 

Keeping in mind that dark red means stationary traffic, this snap was taken at 8.30. It wasn't much better at 9.30, after theoretical peak traffic. 

They should throw the government out. Ah, they did, for various reasons and the interchange is now the problem for the Labor Party, but not of its doing.

Not quite as bad as the morning peak but bad enough.

I will soon enough be 67 years old and this is one of the worst road planning results I've ever seen. It has been a total fail for all road users including passengers on public buses. It is an utter disgrace and a shocking waste of money, under the leadership of the former State Premier, the bible bashing Dominic Perrottet. 


Friday, February 9, 2024

Tube Map

In a promotion for the new Samsung S24 phone, a circular London railway map has been produced. It looks great, except I struggled for ages to find stations I know well. 

I easily found Kings Cross/St Pancras and Paddington but it took some time to find the other stations I was familiar with. They would be Lancaster Gate, Bank, Old Street, Moorgate, Edgware Road, North Greenwich, Bayswater, Embankment, Charing Cross, Vauxhall and London Bridge.

I think I will stick with the modified original Beck map. Maybe you like this circular Tube map.

Thursday, February 8, 2024

Kid off the street and words

I am amazed at how such places as restaurants don't bother about getting their English correct. They could pull in a poorly educated white kid off the street and pay them $20 to correct their English spelling, grammar and style for their websites and signage. Ok, maybe not poorly educated, but it is a rather basic matter for native speakers of English. It's about words.

A couple of years ago I offered to correct the English in the website of our Malaysian friend Danny. I did so by email. I am not sure if he took notice. He doesn't maintain the website himself. I just took a look and he has a new website, very slick and a skim read indicates the English is fine. It's about words.

It was sad to hear of the death of Dr Lowitja O'Donoghue, AC, CBE, DSG, at the age of 91. She was one of the stolen generation. I don't know the right words but in the past we would say she was a half caste, and so she was removed from her family and brought up by missionaries at a very young age. If the parents didn't hand the children over, the law would hear about it and come looking for them. 

She became the first Aboriginal nurse in South Australia and eventually rose in bureaucratic circles to become a very respected person and she did so much work for Aboriginal people. She also worked in in a caring role in India. She went on to work for NGOs, and became head of the Aboriginal Development Corporation. Photo from The Guardian. 

 A paradox is that the missionary education for the stolen generation gave us many well educated and extremely literate part Aboriginal woman, and some men too. Many went on to be great spokespeople for their race. There is a very long list but most are no longer with us. It's about words.

The things you learn from blogging, like in America mold is the spelling, whereas for us it is mould. Canada seems to have a bob each way with spelling. I wonder about the word moult. It's all about words.

My efforts to make my young relatives say lift instead of elevator is futile. They have learnt the word from American media. What's in a word?

I've agreed with myself to tolerate the common pronunciation of kilOMetre. For some reason it has been matched with the pronunciation of odometer. God Gough told me the correct pronunciation is KILOmetre and I am an oddity with my pronunciation of the word. I don't care. That is the way I have always said the word. Please don't eve say kays to my face.

What still sends me into an internal rage is orientated and disorientated. Why? What is wrong with oriented and disoriented? Interestingly I was watching an American YouTube and so pleased the speaker did not say orientated. 

Some of you may think, what does it matter as long as you can understand what is being said, and that is a valid point, but there has to be a basic standard way of speaking, even if it changes over time. 

Wednesday, February 7, 2024

Ticked orf

I completed the tram challenge yesterday with a visiting acquaintance from the Gold Coast, Queensland.

Saturday night we caught up with Brighton Antique Dealer for a very nice dinner  near her home, along with her Toyboy and a two others from her building. If you read the Trip Advisor reviews, you would never go there but we really liked it.  

Sunday was killer hot at 38/100+ degrees which killed off any thought of attending this year's Pride March. Things became a bit ugly this year as anti police protestors clashed with police marching in the parade. Most unfortunate really. That the police march, including the Chief Commissioner is good, but I also understand why GLBTI people are against a police presence generally because of their mistreatment by police, hopefully mostly in the past. As happens, the State Premier marched too.

Monday morning was a bet wet and much cooler at abut 21/72. The rain cleared away but the clouds did not. We had brunch at a newish local café as we had been given a coffee voucher. The food was nice, the coffee, not as good as we expected.

At 1pm I met with D from Gold Coast and we caught a 75 tram to the terminus at Vermont South. It was a long trip, taking an hour but pleasant enough. We left the tram there and let it depart and then caught the next one back towards the city. We left at Hartwell where I took some mural photos and then caught the train back to the city. 

We were sitting at the front of  the tram and for some reason D was sitting on a single sideways street in front of me. A very attractive young woman boarded the tram somewhere in full leather, well done hair and full makeup. She looked stunning. I suppose she was mid twenties. She sorry, but do you mind if I sit with you. If I sit backwards I feel like I will throw up. D said we will have tone our conversation down then, half joking. She replied, I've seen and hear it all before. I said to her, How sad to be so jaded at such a young age. She laughed. Boy could she talk. She worked in a bar in the city and was on her way to work. In about fifteen minutes we knew almost everything about her. We even learnt about her grandmother's car, an Austin 1800 if that means anything to you. She was also interested in us and asked questions. It was an amazing experience. 

We left the tram at Hartwell and I took  some mural photos, but one I am not happy with and I missed some. I will just get the train back soon and get it right, when I am on my own.

I thought the train station was close to Toorak Road but it isn't, so it was a decent walk to the station. I knew we would not make the planned trains, and sure enough as we arrived the pedestrian gates closed. So close but so far. We didn't have too long to wait and at least it was a direct train without a change at Camberwell Station. 

This Tuesday night we are just back from dinner with Bone Doctor and Jo, who is going to see Melanie Martinez in concert. I Googled 'images' and I can instantly see one reason why Jo likes her. Martinez'  performance outfits match Jo's taste in clothing. 

Saturday night's dinner at Tao.

A rather spesh ceiling lamp.

Passing by the Dr Hugh Wirth Animal Care Centre at the Royal Society for Protection of Animals, RSPCA, in the 75 tram.

The 75 Vermont South Terminus. Boring.

What bird is this? Maybe a hooded crow? Some kind of crow, I believe. Never heard of it.

Tuesday, February 6, 2024

The Melbourne Look

Yes, apparently we have one. This is of course a gross generalisation but there is some truth in it. 

I hope I know how to best dress myself in a casual manner and if I was younger and had money to spend on clothing, with today's importance on fashion, I expect I would spend time and money on 'the right look'. But I don't.

Black hair and bright or dark red lipstick is a Melbourne look. In the gay circles I used to move in, this colour was called ****sucker red. I actually just shrugged my shoulders. I don't know why.

We do get snow, up in 'dem 'dere hills but the trees look very un-Australian, though her look is Melbourne. 

This photo is probably quite realistic. 

And this one.

Getting towards eshay, but eshay has become a style as much as it was ever an identity.

Boys' night out.

Cool look and a great casual style.

This dude is very Melbourne.

Sunday, February 4, 2024

Monday Mural

Welcome to South Melbourne, as I join with Sami and others for Monday Mural. This very long mural features a number of aspects of one of Melbourne City's oldest suburbs. Our weekly shopping is in South Melbourne, at Aldi's and Woolworths, put on the Lotto, visit Dan's for supplies, and have brunch,  less than a kilometre from the city edge of the city.

While for decades a direct tram to South Melbourne from the south has been discussed, and featured in planning for our new underground railway line to open this September, I can't see it happening. I think I will be dead before we have a direct tram to South Melbourne, and a train to our international airport.

We can catch a 58 tram to Sturt Street and then either walk up a bit of hill to Clarendon Street or catch a 1 tram. But we really need the planned tram, along Park Street and turning right into Clarendon Street.  

Later edit: Blogger has a bet each way, sometimes using the world dating system and sometimes using the US dating system. It does my head in. This was meant to be posted at 5am Eastern Australian Summer time on Monday morning. I mucked up.

Sunday Selections

I'm joining with River and others for this week's Sunday Selections and this week it is about random buildings.

It's such a shame this photo is crooked. It is a lovely apartment block in Ripponlea. I wonder why I was there. 

A stroll down, I think, Osborne Street, South Yarra. A slim fit.

Because of flat roofs and lower ceiling heights, three storey buildings can be not much higher than a two storey building they may have replaced.

There must have been quite a few demolitions in the street. I am surprised there isn't a heritage overlay. 

I think this building is in East Melbourne. Being timber and being preserved is quite unusual. The land would be worth a lot and lot of money. Later edit: This may be called Osborne House, or once was. After conflicting information, I think it is best I write nothing about what I found out beyond the visible timber was pre-cut and imported from America. 

Best to return in winter when the leaves have fallen. Well, I'd need to remember where it is. Ah, I  embiggened the photo and it is the Equity Trustees building. Apparently its interior is very original and in excellent condition. 

The old  Ball and Welch building in Flinders Street. Ball and Welch was a successful department store and was bought by another department store, Georges in 1970. Georges closed all other Ball and Welch stores, and finally this one in 1976. The company was no more. Georges as we knew it has gone too now. A shopping centre was built within the building called Flinders Fair but it failed and the building is now offices for some conservative pro business anti worker and anti social reform lobby group.

A bit further along Flinders Street is the  Masonic Club Building. I don't think I've ever met a Mason who has the hand of someone who does masonry work. 

The Forum Theatre, originally the State Theatre. It is now owned by David Mariner group of companies and externally is in very poor condition. However, I believe the exterior will receive some much needed work. I don't know about the interior although a few years ago floor coverings were lifted to reveal a beautiful mosaic floor, and this was very carefully restored. Click on the photo. Its exterior is rather...busy.

Later edit: I think these were all taken with my old phone, hence they look somewhat dull.

Bumping another car

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