Monday, June 18, 2012


On Friday night I went with a couple of friends to the a music venue called The Jazz Cellar, and it was a mixed experience.

It’s $20, each, to get in. You have to arrive ridiculously early (around 5pm) to get a chair, then wait for two and half hours for the show to start. There’s no food and no drinks, except what you bring yourself. The musicians aren’t miked properly so you either can’t hear them or you are aurally stabbed by feedback screech. What little you can hear is drowned out by drunk 20-somethings who wish they were hipsters yelling at each other about Facebook.

Even so… there’s something of the charm of the speakeasy about it. It’s rough and battered and cobbled together. The music isn’t there to be revered, but merely to be the soundtrack to the raucous party going on around it. The bands played old school dixieland and ragtime rather than the awful jazz fusion you hear everywhere else in Perth, and as a result people could get up and dance without having to worry about encountering any freeform 20 minute guitar solos. If only they went the full speakeasy route, and served naughty gin in teacups, it’d be awesome. But this is Perth, where everyone is comfortable and law abiding and few would dream of doing anything transgressive. I guess it’s difficult to do an underground jazz club in a city built on sand dunes.

So my friends and I left early, and repaired to the more emphatically hipster hangout of 50ml for coffee, hot chocolate… and Jewish cupcakes!

Note the delicate pink colour of the cupcake that only comes from using exactly the right amount of blood from Palestinian babies.

Friday, June 08, 2012


Last weekend I had to drive out to the country to visit my family.

There's a lot to love about the country - lush fields, green forests, cows - but there's also the downside of having to mix with people who want everyone to get up as early as they do. This was how I found myself, on a Sunday morning, staring into the inconsiderate beauty of a sunrise.

I am quite content to know, theoretically, that sunrises exist without having to actually witness them firsthand.