Cooking At #36 is a new series launched today from kitchens around Australia, eventually the world.
This innovative, jerky-handed phone camera series takes you, the poor, ignorant, unclassy, unclassified, joke of a wretched wastrel, awash in a sea of processed mediocre food, TV dinners, and fast food that’s slowly filling you up with salt and plastic — we take your sorry arse pics…
I’m sorry, I’ll read that again.
We take your sorry aspic, and sauce a better way to cook.
Episode One (Shredded Wheat/Blowing Mayo aka Resilience Is Useful).
The pilot was produced in a secret Holsworthy kitchen. Another pilot was picked up in a Moorebank Sports Club – she was either Randy or Chastity; such a fine line betwixt and between, I find.
Road-tested on six selected Overheard Productions friends and strangers who all were unanimous in their reviews:
Greek Fetta Chorus: “We’re calling the Critical Assessment Team. Put down the phone and step away from the maple syrup.”
Actually, they said lovely things, but I’ll add the reviews later.
There’s time for one. “Alison from Athenry” says, ‘Show us your chips, Billgella!”
And another: “Axminster Al from Barking in Essex” says, ‘What’s with the fruity 80s English accent?’
On Thursday 12 November 2015 at 2.30am, the Wattle Grove branch of Michel’s Patisserie had the quickest reno it’s ever likely to get.
And probably without the requisite planning approvals from Liverpool Council.
You can read all about it elsewhere, and probably watch some news footage too, including the young Channel Nine reporter and her cameraman who looked like a hipster who’d escaped from Rozelle, and was wielding (I ship you not) a Go Pro.
Huzzah for technology.
Here are a few pictures of the devastation, plus some video courtesy of Overheard Productions WTAF and Overheard FM. Reporting for all channels, here’s Phillip Mahkawfee-Khup.
Your reporter, Phillip Mahkawfee-Khup, has more.
Pictures are being added but this is for the 11pm news, so cut it, print it.
I overheard a man on Manly Wharf beach one afternoon and his story became one of the most compelling interviews.
Let’s get there, unlike the Manly Ferry which darts out of Circular Quay and pretty much makes a beeline for Cabbage Tree Bay.
Let’s take a slightly circuitous root.
I grew up in the mid sixties and seventies with something of a hefty disdain for Manly.
It was a disdain maintained from a distance of about 366kms away in Canberra, and it was all based on the eternal battle between the mauve of the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles (‘Silvertails’) and the Black and White of my beloved Western Suburbs Magpies (‘Fibros’). Rugby League, for the uninitiated.
My family hailed from the west: Parramatta, Harris Park, Guildford and Baulkham Hills. My anti-Manly bias was born of those silly tribal rivalries that sound so pointless in smaller towns like Canberra where I have never been able to take the north vs south thing seriously.
“We’re not that [farnarkeling] big!”
Cliff Notes: I’d never spent much time there, and while visiting friends in Fairlight and on other trips, I was looking for reasons to like the area.
Yes, we’ve fast-forwarded to 2013, and for some reason one day, I’d gone across the briney foam from Circular Quay to Manly Wharf and drifted up and down the Corso and around the back lanes and alleys.
And fell completely and totally and hopelessly in love with the place.
When you get just a little bit out of the centre of Manly, things get a little beige, bland and neo-conservative. But right in the middle of town, it’s like a little melting pot, albeit a flashier more glamorous pot than some other localities that host meetings of many cultures within the scope of what is loosely termed ‘Greater Sydney’.
Me, I love them all.
Walk from Punchbowl train station to the Boys High School (which I did when I first moved to Sydney in March 2013, to interview the assistant principal) and you see pretty much no white faces, hear no Australian spoken, and smell smells that don’t feature in, say, the main street of Miranda.
Take a walk along Forest Road in Hurstville CBD and to have a conversation or transact some business, a working knowledge of Mandarin, Cantonese or Korean would serve you well.
Hang out around various parts of Liverpool and a little Italian will get you a long way.
I know a little Italian. His name’s Marco and he’s a retired jockey.
(Dips the hat towards the film ‘Top Secret’ for that gag. I’m here all week, tip your wait staff, try the risotto.)
It was Monday morning and I was walking to the Bulli train station in the light drizzle, a damp swag slung o’er the shoulder, a song in my heart and a tune in my pancreas. And as is my wont on a post-festival morn, I was ruminating on the music and song-filled days just passed when it suddenly struck me.
Something had been missing. Something had not been there. There had been a yawning chasm, a gaping void.
I couldn’t recall one single mobile phone sounding in a concert venue.
Not one loud blast of ‘Who Let The Dogs Out’ at an inopportune time.
No sudden fanfare of Morris Dancing’s greatest hit in inglorious polymorphic tones.
And while others may have suffered in the auditory department from SMS Alertsville, I could not recall one chirp, beep or apocryphal whistling tone* to announce an incoming text message.
(* I’m a liberal with a small ‘l’, but the creation and use of this whistling alert sound for text messages is, in my book, justification enough for the re-introduction of capital punishment. Especially on Sydney trains.) Continue reading →
The program showcases bands, performers and troupes from across the broad spectrum of bluegrass, Americana, roots, acoustic and alt-country, and a few others around the blurred edges of folk.
It’s a 100% community and volunteeer-run operation, making its longevity and sustainability all the more remarkable. And laudable.
It gets even better than that – but you’ll have to listen to the interview for the part that rocked me back on my heels.
And upturned kayak.
The show has reached an eye-watering 750+ episodes as of April 2014, many of which are freely available from the Woodsongs website in audio and video formats. Apart from its legion of individual listeners, Woodsongs has spawned a string of coffeehouse groups which meet to experience the show as a community.
And it’s not like Michael has anything else to do with his spare time.
Like being a singer-songwriter of many years standing. Or touring. Or arranging other concerts. Or building a log cabin and surrounding structures plus landscaping and bridges etc. bare-handed. Or being a father of two adult children (and two more on the way in one hit).
No, I lied. He’s all of that and more.
An just get a load of where he got his folk beginnings from. I can only interpret my silence at hearing who his neighbour was in upstate New York as a little mild shock and awe.
On a chilly autumnal morning in Sydney, I stepped off the Manly* Ferry and found a suitable-ish place to record an interview over the shaky airwaves from Australia to Lexington, Kentucky. A picture of my luxurious chair in the ‘recording studio’ appears below.
* For international audiences, ‘Manly’ refers to a suburb and location on the north side of Sydney Harbour named ‘Manly’. We don’t believe in forcing gender stereotypes onto our aquatic transport vessels. Actually, if anything, we refer to them as ‘her‘ for the most part. Continue reading →
1993: One Year Into My Life On Stage(s), A Monster Is Born!
In 1992 I was press-ganged, as organically-chosen head of the social club of my workplace, and the person most likely, to present a charity trivia quiz for a couple of hundred people.
That night in mid-September 1992 when I picked up a microphone for the first time properly — the Kraken awake’d.
Bill Quinn died that night and Billy Quinn awoke.
Some months later, needing a gag for our follow-up, I wrote to two likely lads who were then plying their trade on Triple J, formerly 2JJ or 2 Double J.
I wrote my letter, forgot about it and life continued. Six days before the 1993 quiz, I came rolling in, rolling in, rolling rolling, as I came rolling in [drunk] and my long-suffering then wife said a package had arrived and was in the hall.
Yeah, I did a few cartwheels and dive rolls that night. Therein was the tape with this on which I later edited to remove references to the selected charity (The Smith Family) so I could re-use it to get utility for many other charities, not for profits and 21 years later…. I think I need to book a certain venue for a date in September.