Tuesday, June 26, 2007

I Heart Uprock

Someone has rearranged the disintegrating Uprock cup tag.


Monday, June 18, 2007

Not glum things

It was suggested to me that the blog has been a bit glum lately, what with the dog getting hit by a car, the passing away of the local shop-keeper and the umbrella massacre of June 2007. So, I offer you this indiscriminate collection of meaningless photos as light entertainment.

With the seasonal downturn in frozen desserts, Dolce & Gelato are now serving lasagne.

The inescapable thought of lasagne-flavoured gelato overwhelms me.

On Weekes Lane, something has gone terribly wrong with the tiles that hide under steps.

In Gould's Books, I find the one sign of any kind of method or organisation amidst the chaos of dust and disarray.

Outside the Newtown Neighbourhood Centre, Sue looks forward to her fourteenth year of being immortalised as a pooh.

In Alton Lane, someone plays with paint and with words.

And on Wilson Street, another pun is made on another defaced sign (pun intended).

Monday, June 11, 2007

Maria's Shop

Maria's Shop, on Albermarle Street.

There are lots of flowers in makeshift vases, and personal messages for Maria, which makes me feel so glad to live in this community.

Maria's Shop isn't my local corner store, but I understand completely the grief of her neighbours and customers. I feel very attached to the local shopkeepers, and I still pop in to my old corner store, on Alice Street, to see how things are going. The toddler I remember from 1998 now sits at the counter doing maths homework. He has no idea who I am and wouldn't realise how his presence quietly evokes in me the comfort of continuity and belonging.

The people who serve us are such an important part of our mental landscape. Last weekend a woman from the Australian Electoral Commission came to my house. I felt like I knew her quite well, and thought I must have met her at a Greens event. I was a bit embarrassed that I couldn't remember the name of someone with whom I obviously interacted quite substantially. When I asked where we had met before, she said she used to work at the Crispy Inn bakery on King Street. The extent of our interaction had been over the commercial exchange of an occasional sourdough baguette, but in my mind she was practically my friend.

An aside: You might remember how the Crispy Inn played a critical, ridiculous role in the VSU debate. Maybe this is why she conjured up for me a political connection?!

Learning meditation at the Buddhist Centre on Enmore Road, we were instructed, as part of the metta bhavana practice, to think of a neutral acquaintance whom we don't really know, to be the subject of our private meditative thoughts of loving kindness. Discussing with the group afterwards, it turned out that almost everyone was thinking of local shopkeepers. Multiple people were directing their good vibes towards the man in the Saray Turkish Pizza place. I was focusing on the woman in the newsagent on Wilson Street, who keeps her dog by her side in the shop.

All these incidental people in our lives, with starring roles in our consciousness, and with good vibes coming their way. For me, that's what feeling at home in a place is all about.

Maria's Shop got me thinking about all of this, and about how I should document more about these local identities. I shall endeavour to do so.

I kept seeing little creatures everywhere today

These bedraggled fellows were in a drenched visual art diary, part of a pile of discarded belongings left at the end of Gladstone Street.

That sad fox really tugs my heart strings. He shouldn't have been left out in the rain.

This stern-looking whale, hardier to the elements, is on Weekes Lane.

He also tugs my heart strings. But not as much as, say, a manatee would.

These canine companions then cheered me up.

They're part of the Crazy Circus Art Movement mural on the unfortunately-named Raper Street.

Crazy indeed.

But not as crazy as these terrifying bunny fingernails on display in the window of Aquarius Beauty on Enmore Road.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Loose ends

Little scruffy dog went home from the vet's all better. Thank you for the inquiries on his progress. You are all clearly Good Folk.

The Uprock cup tag has now appeared facing the train tracks near Macdonaldtown station, just as Brad suggested! The one near the Silos has pretty much disintegrated.

The Three Proud People mural was raised at the City of Sydney council meeting and the reproduction is being investigated by the public art curator.

In dramatic news from the noticeboard of the Starr-Bowkett Co-Operative Building Society, the monthly loans ballot couldn't take place due to computer failure. Ironically, this is the first time in the history of my observance of the noticeboard that the message has been typed and computer-printed. Suspicious.

No movement from the spooky Mad Max truck.

Cross breeds

Cherry and cheese pastizzi from the new Pastizzi Cafe on south King Street, near Alice Street (run by the same people who have the Maltese Cafe in Surry Hills).

Delicious, but they sit on the sweet-savoury fence, which is a little unnerving for someone who likes a clear delineation of such things. The pea ones are also great, and there are apple, chocolate and many more flavours which I will now need to try. You can buy a frozen dozen to take home for $10. (Thanks to Beth for the photo)

Another interesting (and photogenic) food from my weekend:

A brocciflower bought from Alfalfa House. Psychedelic. Can't report on taste yet.