You’re a F@#king Weirdo

weird·o n. pl. weird·oes Slang

1. A person regarded as being very strange or eccentric.2. A deranged, potentially dangerous person.The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language

weirdo weirdie

noun eccentric, nut (slang), freak (informal), flake (slang, chiefly U.S.), crank (informal), loony (slang), nutter (Brit. slang), oddball (informal), crackpot (informal), nutcase (slang), headcase (informal), headbanger (informal), queer fish (Brit. informal) All the other kids at school thought I was a weirdo.

Collins Thesaurus of the English Language

Are you? How do you react when someone calls you a weirdo?

Until searching for the definition I wasn’t aware the word had such negative connotations. If you hear something often enough it loses its edge becomes normal and accepted, which seems to have happened here. The word just comes through as vanilla. I could at this point break into any one of a thousand stories all about weirdness.  My weirdness. Although it has been called eccentricity a few times too. This seems somewhat more dignified and befitting as I get older, kind of like how grey hairs give some men bearing.

dignified

You are a fucking weirdo. Thanks for that. Ever so pleased that you had this opportunity to share with me your thoughts on my personality and general humanity.  There is a rage, seething just below the surface, it carries sharp edged weapons and other devices for inflicting harm. It is OK though, this rage is contained, kept inside a little pouch. Rage with the safety on.  By no means is this rage carried as an implicit threat against any others person. That’s not the reason it is still carried. It is fuel. Picture iron man’s arc reactor.

he man

Anger if left to its own devices will always destroy.  Harnessed it can move mountains, part oceans and heal the sick. This seems a far more productive path on which to tread.

So go ahead and call some one a weirdo today, it’s such a nice thing to do.

The Prince.

Selected excerpts from an essay I wrote in 2004 on American artist Richard Prince.

Throughout the course of this essay we shall explore and critically consider the way in which the work of the artist Richard Prince has deals with issues of authenticity.  In order to do so we need to embark upon a journey through suburbia into the dystopian world of the working class, slip through the schism separating high and low culture, into a land of intellectual snobbery. For it is not from the working class that Prince derives his source material but what was aimed at the working class or more specifically what is know as middle America/Australia.

A land whose constituents are the consuming, material lusting whores of the misanthropic modern world that provide the biomass that this late capitalist period requires.  We shall call them as krill. Prince sources his material from among the tirade of media that is being delivered to this group with all the subtly of a Gattlan gun.  He hijacks this material and uses it to critique its maker and makes us take a look at our selves as well.  This introspection is assured because if you get what Prince is doing then you know you are not krill and you know this because you’ve “educated” yourself and because your educated krill think you’re a snobby ‘intellectual’ tosser and you know this and so you constantly re-assess yourself to ensure you do not become the snobby tosser but you are and yes it does take one to know one.  But anyhow I digress. Prince makes his art out of food for krill so snobby ‘intellectual’ tossers can pontificate about it.”

 

Writing for an audience

A puppy.

When I first started this blog I had no ambitions for it other than trying to sort through a stack of old notes collected from several dusty corners and crumpled under the seat in my car.  That I was using a public platform on which others i.e the public, who could read whatever I wrote was something I was not fully aware of. (Yes I do seem to have my head stuck up my arse at times) I was even less aware that it would dictate what I wrote about, as this was “my” blog, written for shits and giggles. Or was it?

In the space of a few weeks I have gone from punching out posts on whatever came to hand or mind to spending a lot of time thinking of what people may like to read about, is it topical and does any of make sense to anybody else save me? Anyone who visits this blog will know by the volumes of replies, followers and likes that it is widely read. Well perhaps not but that is entirely beside the point. The point is to provide something worthwhile to you my esteemed reader.

Super Cal, an esteemed reader. How many dudes you know go like this? Flow like this? Not many if any.

So I started to think I should write about topics with universal appeal.  But didn’t someone say once that you can’t please all the people all the time and by using such a broad brush I’d by liable to get paint everywhere and end up with nothing but mess.  Oh yeah I should find my niche, that’s what the how to guides say.  Find your niche. Find your Niche FiND YouR NICHE FIND YOUR NICHE. Aren’t niches supposed to be carved as opposed to being found? For if you find a niche that is already carved out you have to retrofit your ideas to make them fit neatly whereas by carving you have a chance to customise during construction.

 Niches carved not found.

So what’s my niche? No idea. Hence the category of “Assorted Ramblings”.  Anyway to sum up. I’ll just keep on digging (some posts will be good others like this one not so, but it’s got a picture of a puppy) and if you would like me to expand on something I’ve written about just let me know.

As always,

Your humble and obedient servant,

Dave.

 

 

 

Look what they’ve done to my post, ma

My local ABC radio station 100.7FM has a segment each week called “Wedding Songs” in which a guest chooses four songs based on the theme of: something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue. Yesterday I caught the tail end of it so I didn’t get the name of the guest, only their final song choice. Which was, “Look what they’ve done to my song,ma” by Melanie Safka.

I have always got one ear open listening for a nice turn of phrase. One of the lines of the song is “I wish I could find a good book to live in”.

Have a listen to the song I think it’s great. What do you think?

With a sense of wonder.

Yesterday I wrote (albeit very briefly) about children’s farms. The reason for asking those questions is that I have been thinking allot lately about how I see the world around me.  I have been trying to step outside myself to gain an objective view through my own glasses. Is this even possible? Perhaps through some sort of philosophical process such as:

Transcendental perspectivism is a hybrid philosophy developed by German-born philosopher, Professor Werner Krieglstein. A blending of Friedrich Nietzsche‘s Perspectivism and the utopian ideals of the Transcendentalism movement, Transcendental Perspectivism challenges Nietzsche’s claim that there are no absolute truths while fully accepting his observation that all truth can only be known in the context of one’s own perception. This is accomplished through an appreciation of the emotional relationship between two perceptions (the “perceiver” and the “other”).

Thanks Wikipedia for the above quote.  This transcendental perspectivism may go some way to explaining what I am trying to achieve. Maybe, but I can see a back alley approaching and feel a strong temptation to duck down it. (Stop. Focus. Will yourself to say on target – see earlier post entitled “Just what do you think you are doing young man-don’t you know you’ll go blind?”)

I feel a sense of childlike wonder when I move through space.  A constant state of amazement.  WOW!  Curiosity about how things work, what make them tick, why? WHY?  I want to explore everything and get lost in the process.

Can this state of being be harnessed? Focused and directed? Or will that negate the very thing that makes it so enjoyable.  It’s a constant battle. Should I “go with the flow” or do I need to use some type of rudder?  I found the pine cone in the above photo while I was walking around in the pines near home, I was supposed to be taking the dogs for a quick walk then on to the renovations at home. This quick walk took about 4 hours or half the working day and what did I achieve? Well I now know I great deal about that block of pine trees, all its hidden nooks and crannies, that it has a least two clearings that get full sunlight at ground level (a rare thing in a pine plantation) and that a road drain runs into it and this turns into a small creek when it rains and this in turn has eroded the soil to the point where several trees are in danger of falling down.

Question: Is this useful information? Was it a profitable use of my time?

Answer:

The pleasures and sorrows of work.

Some people love their work. Lucky? Maybe but more than likely they worked hard and made many sacrifices to get where they are. I tip my hat to them.

Am I one? No. But I am working hard and making sacrifices in order to join those ranks. It is a slog, a daily grind and constant battle. My swords are sharp, I have faith and see glimmers of light flickering on the horizon. I will get there.

How about you? Do you bounce out of bed each morning full of energy for the day ahead? Or do you trudge slowly down the road, head bowed? For those of you who identify with the former, go on you good thing. For those who are more inclined to identify with the latter this is for you.

5 reasons to love your job.

  1. You have a job. This means you can pay your bills, keep a roof over your head and feed your family.
  2. You have a job. This provides you with many opportunities to learn new skills. Look for them.
  3. You have a job. Some don’t. Think about how you would achieve #1 if you were unemployed.
  4. You have a job. As much as it chaffs us to think about our hard earned money being taxed to support those “dole bludgers and welfare cheats. You also support sick kids in hospital, provide shelter to those in real need, pay the wages of those who protect and look after us. Nurses, police, firefighters, Ambulance officers.  The list go on and on. Teachers: shouldn’t forget them. Sorry to those I missed please add in comments.
  5. You have a job. You are a road warrior. The tools of your trade slung proudly over your shoulder. Marching off to work with your chin held high. You are a warrior. Go you good thing.

All due respect and credit is to be given to Alain de Botton who wrote the book whose title I used for this post.  A great book well worth a read.

Polished Concrete Trial update

Tried a new technique the other day.  Didn’t work out as I’d hoped but does anything? Still quite happy with the results. Not going be useful for the bench-top project due to the indentation.  This can easily be ground out, but the lines are far to crisp to ruin. We are going to have a heap of cool paving stones by the time this project is done.

 

The trial continues.

A poo wrapped in a bow!

Yesterday I was going somewhere with my post but reading it back today I think I missed the mark or at least got wildly off topic.  I’ve been writing down ideas for posts with pen and paper during the day, then using that as a platform.  The draft is scrawled, barely legible but angry and funny too. Most of this I cut out because I think maybe its too rude or not terribly nice.  Should I?

Constructive criticism. Is it so bad?  I once knew a group of people who were lovely. Really nice people. Full of praise and supportive of each others endeavors.  If someone made a sandwich it was an amazing sandwich.  Painted a picture, fantastic, wonderful.  Made a bracelet, awesome, you should sell those. I heard this praise continually. Good vibes bounced about, positive energy shining. But I got the feeling that someone could take a shit, wrap it up in a bow, place it on the kitchen table and it to would be received by a rousing cheer, trumpets would sound, WOW that’s fantastic, AMAZING, BRILLIANT. No doubt upon closer inspection would be declared the greatest shit ever and declared certifiably organic too.

How do we know if what we are doing is really any good if everything we do is the best thing ever?

 

 

Be careful what you wish for.

While studying at university (Visual Arts) we used to have these things called group reviews. I think they were about once a month. Where the whole year level (about 15-20 students, not a big uni, no) would take turns presenting their work and receiving critique, comments and questions from the group and lecturers.  I was the common feeling that these were days to dread. But not I. Being the incongruous bastard that I am, I loved and looked forward to them.

Who would like to go first?  Group would recede pressing themselves into their seats. I would jump out of my seat, as happy as Larry and full of beans. It wasn’t displaying my work that got me all excited (I do tend to get excited like a child, hey it’s fun) it was what came next. The critique. A chance to verbally spar with my peers, be challenged, picked apart it was intellectual battle. It was why I went to university, and that is an rant all of its own.

I quickly learnt after a couple of these group reviews that this was not to be. Everybody was quick with the platitudes, scathing critique, no were to be seen. Everyone was so nice and lovely and there were fluffy bunny’s that hopped about through fresh green grass spotted with rainbows and candy canes.  It was not war but a love fest.

So I changed tack, that’s right readers, I displayed some fucking adaptability. (If you missed an earlier post that’s my favorite quote from my favorite book so I do like to use it) I decided to go last and all day long would ask most awkward questions(this spun off into an entire semesters work and yes I am bracket crazy today)I could think of.  Challenging my peers in hope that by the end of the day they would collectively think “stuff this bloke, let’s hammer him”. But no, nothing, narda, nix.

When I queried my mentoring lecturer about this, I received a question in response. Why are all your ideas wrapped up so tight and why are you in such a hurry? BAM!!!!! Knocked me flat on my arse. I didn’t have an answer to this. I had nothing, narda, nix.  I staged a tactical retreat and nursed my wounds, thinking and thinking and thinking. Stumped. Was for years.

Until the other day.

Ideas wrapped up so tight?

I spend a great deal of time preparing my work and my thoughts about it. Researching and doing my homework. Stepping outside myself to probe my own work for holes and gain an objective view. All this results in ideas that are well formed and considered. Ideas being wrapped up tight seems to have a negative connotation. This was an excellent question.

Why am I in such a hurry?

Because the clock is ticking, the world is spinning and time waits for no man (or woman). I don’t have all the time in the world, could have yes, but may be dead tomorrow. So if I piss today up the wall maybe I don’t get tomorrow.  Yes yes, by all means make time to smell the roses, stop and ponder things and enjoy the beauty of a sunrise, but get moving again and keep the ball rolling.