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28 March 2012 @ 02:46 am
Catching up!  
I saw Duran Duran tonight, thanks to a friend who had a spare ticket, and then Mr B also saw them, thanks to another friend dropping out. Despite having never been a fan, they were ENORMOUS fun, especially since we were at the front side and so could see the bits where Simon Le Bon hid behind the drummer to take a bit of a breather. John Taylor really is as attractive as everyone used to say ... And they are actually really good -- the vocals were strong, drumming and synth brilliant, and the guitar section driving and vigorous. I may have been wrong to ignore pop in the 80s!

A few links for Australian readers including a spidery one for all non-arachnaphobes: If you're wondering about the debate on power costs in this country and want some actual facts to break down the figures, rdmasters has a masterful post here that explains and illuminates. In short: we will not all be rooned by the Carbon Tax!

On a related topic, don't forget Earth Hour on Saturday night at 8.30pm. Even if you're like Barnaby Joyce and believe that 'humans have never ever affected the weather, that's just absolute rubbish!' despite the fact that sulphate aerosols were shown to be responsible for the brief cooling period in the 1970s*, take an hour to turn off your telly and laptop and take a moonlit picnic in the park, or break out the romance and dine by candlelight -- bespoke candleshops need trade, too!

Did you see these photos of spiders leaving mass webs behind as they flee the floods? AMAZING?

And finally, head over to the House of Representatives Committees pages and take this survey on legislation for Gay Marriage. It won't take long, and asks whether or not you support two proposed pieces of legislation. Both bills are quite similar and call for a basic redrafting of the current law so that marriage is redefined as being between two people, rather than between a man and a woman. If you're happy to take my word for it, you can get away without even downloading the proposals. MOST excitingly, it gives you a lovely long space to talk about your reasons for what you believe.

I left an essay talking about how the lack of such legislation in the past led to generations of children of gay parents -- like me -- who grew up with families able to use our parents' sexuality as a tool for custody disputes driven by prejudice, which was NOT HELPFUL. If you're at all concerned about protecting children and safeguarding the family, the sooner we have gay marriage, the better it will be for everyone.

It's quite a while since I posted, I've been stupidly occupied this month sewing a frock for one friend, knitting socks for another, doing some actual paid work and tidying the house. The frock is A Lot Of Work, with two whole separate gowns combining in layers, but she looks gorgeous in the first layer and will look spiffing when the whole thing comes together.

It's not all been drudgery, I met up twice with the fabbo spirillen and we went to see Picasso and then trekked up to the cheap Sydney Harbour Bridge viewing platform ($11.50 to go to the top of the pylon and not have heart failure, versus $200 to go to the top of the span and clutch at your chest in an alarmed fashion.)  Then there was the wedding of a dear friend and her lovely lad, for which I baked 72 tarts (half dark chocolate, half white chocolate and raspberry, recipes to come) and failed to take any photos. I briefly considered making another batch to shoot them, but that would involve a. Making more tarts, and b. Eating more tarts. I am trying to get my thighs back to racing size, so they will have to wait until we next have guests.

Mr B and I also went to see the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain, who were brill and totally worth choosing over half a banjolele for my birthday (NB I was going to pay for the other half, I was not going to purchase a dissected instrument because THAT would be weird). Apparently Sydney is going ukulele crazy, as the Concert Hall at the Opera House was full, and about a third of the audience was waving ukuleles. I have a dream to get a uke group happening in Erskineville and one of the local bar owners is half convinced by my plans, so you never know, we could be in luck!

And I finally read The Hunger Games books, which were compelling and made me cry a bit, despite having a few flaws, but the sort of flaws that come from writing that's good and errs a little rather than writing that is bad or lazy. And then I read some reports on Republican commitments in their primaries and actions in their states and I realised that clearly there are some people out there who Suzanne Collins needs to visit so that she can carefully explain that Snow is meant to be the Bad Guy. Or, you know, slap them upside the back of the head. That would be fine, too.

LJ et the first version of this post, back when the following was timely, however, since I have also failed to since send any cards or small tokens of my affection, allow me to finish with:
HAPPY LATE BIRTHDAYS MIC, ROMA AND SPIRILLEN!!!! Sorry I'm crap! I make you all look tall!

* Anti-Climate Change activists often point to this period as a. evidence against warming trends through the 20th century, and b. evidence that scientists say the darnedest things. In actual fact, when you factor in the known cooling effects of sulphate aerosols, which we have reasonably accurate readings for through this period, the planet still warmed through these years, and scientists said as much at the time. Journalists largely said 'A New Ice Age Dawns!', while the very small number of scientists who said 'Gosh, it's cold, is that something going on?' went off and researched it and came back with 'Nope, false alarm', which did not make any headlines, but given journalists generally can't tell the difference between sodium and salt, you should take their announcements on scientific matters with a grain of the proverbial.
illereynillereyn on March 27th, 2012 03:53 pm (UTC)
Wow, you're still awake?

On the other hand, so am I!

To Sydney internet night-owls!

*off to read your post
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 27th, 2012 03:55 pm (UTC)
*Waves wildly!!*

Wide awake. Happily I have a story to knock over before I go to bed, which I could only interview the woman about today, so at least it's not aimless insomnia! Off to type quickly before I run out of brain ;-)
jennifer lopezlemniciate on March 27th, 2012 05:15 pm (UTC)
Oh wow, the pictures of the spiders gave me uncomfortable goosebumps, but it looks so amazing!
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 03:23 pm (UTC)
They're so beautiful! We have a lot of Orb weavers in our garden, and most have been trained not to weave across the paths. Their webs after rain are probably the prettiest thing in the garden most days ...
Kareinakareina on March 27th, 2012 05:50 pm (UTC)
I'm an Australian, so I gave them my UTAS email address (after logging in to be certain it still exists), and I told them:

"I strongly believe that any combination of people who love one another and wish to marry one another should be permitted to do so. There should be no restrictions regarding the number of individuals who wish to join themselves in marriage, nor should there be any restrictions regarding the sex or gender of any of the individuals involved. I further believe that no one should ever be required to marry anyone if they do not wish to do so. I also believe that people who are not ministers of religion should be permitted to be marriage celebrants, as there are many of us who are opposed to organized religion, and some of them still wish to marry."

which, at 117 words, is well within their 250 word limit...

It might be slightly contradictory to saying "yes" to the bills as written, but I did anyway, without bothering to look up the exact wording of the bills, since I trust you.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 03:24 pm (UTC)
Thanks, dear!
κάτι τρέχει στα γύφτικα_inbetween_ on March 27th, 2012 06:41 pm (UTC)
That first sentence had me make a double take. Interesting that John is still handsome, he was always my favourite; I remember he was said to like gardening, of all things, then. Simon seems to have a sense of humour and they could play, yes, though I never saw them and stupidly sold the 2 LPs of them that I liked.

Have you seen the things twitters tweet about Hunger Games? For the first time ever I wish the LJ correctness police on someone, all of them to be precise.

I need you to identify a plant for me. First I need to photograph it though /sensible
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 03:26 pm (UTC)
Simon was jolly good fun, and I can actually see John wandering about dusting with sulphur ...

I DID see them on my flist today. HOW STUPID! Especially since Rue is clearly black in the books, and they've cast the most adorable actress in the history of the world, so much so that I don't think I can see the film now, knowing what happens.

Do send through the pix. You know how I love to track down a plant! Flowers or seedpods extra helpful!
(no subject) - _inbetween_ on March 28th, 2012 06:23 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Nennenenne on March 27th, 2012 06:56 pm (UTC)
The concert sounds great! I would have loved seeing it. :)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 03:27 pm (UTC)
You would have been very welcome company! If you get a chance, I do recommend them, they worked hard and were very good at what they do.
quatrefoilquatrefoil on March 27th, 2012 10:17 pm (UTC)
Personally I think that we should remove legal recognition of opposite-sex marriage, and make the civil union the only legal form of relationship. Civil unions should then extend legal protection to carers' and companionate relationships as they do in Tasmania (which is a really important issue if you're single). Marriages (same and opposite sex) could still be celebrated by religious and non-religious celebrants as they saw fit, but would not hold legal status, as is the case in France.

But since that's not going to happen any time soon, I support same-sex marriage as a simple matter of non-discrimination.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 03:29 pm (UTC)
Oh, you radical! Though I am 100% with you on the civil union extension to cover companionate and carer relationships.
Keeper of the Superfluous Es!themostepotente on March 27th, 2012 10:57 pm (UTC)
OMFG, look at all the spiders! Wowsers! *hides*

Also, fail, Brammers, fail. You forgot to mention how hot Nick Rhodes still is. *G*
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 03:31 pm (UTC)
Oh Miss, that's like saying the sun rises in the east and water is wet: it is a simple fact of life! Tragically, he was on the other side of the stage from me, so I could just admire his slick synth skills, and have a frisson of recognition when he chatted about his first Fairlight -- that was a beautiful piece of tech ...

And don't worry, they are NICE spiders! Australia has loads of very sweet friendly spiders, to make up for the handful of hideous vicious deadly ones.
Anwynanthraxia on March 27th, 2012 11:32 pm (UTC)
What does it say about me that the first thing I thought while looking at the flooded spiders photos was "all that gossamer going to waste! Do you know how much fabric we could weave from that if someone knew how to collect it?"

Edited at 2012-03-27 11:33 pm (UTC)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 03:32 pm (UTC)
I do, and I am still bemoaning the fact that I do not have enough cash to get to the V&A in time to see the spider silk textiles they have on display there at the moment :-(
dylansbuzz: Katniss and Peeta rundylansbuzz on March 28th, 2012 12:43 am (UTC)
Duran Duran is a secret - or not so - guilty pleasure of mine; I still watch the "Lonely in your nightmare" video on YouTube and think dirty thoughts about John Taylor. He still looks good, but Simon Le Bon is just still sex. STILL.

At this point, I would choose President Snow over our current presidential choices. This is troubling.

*smooches to you*
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 03:35 pm (UTC)
Oh you made me laugh ... I suppose Snow showed that he had some small ethical core at least ...

And Simon looks like such a good time, you can see why he has always been a popular lad! But I confess that I always fall for people who play strings. I'll have to watch that vid now, or at least, tomorrow or the next day when I find a few free minutes again!

BIG HUGS to you! I have been crap at keeping up!
down the hills and round the bendsnorton_gale on March 28th, 2012 01:46 am (UTC)
Hey there, you.I was one of those hipster types who always mocked Duran Duran and their fans ("Durannies") back in their heyday, but in the 90's I began to appreciate them as a real band rather than a teen fave phenomenon. I like them, I'll admit it!

Also I love that Simon LeBon is bisexual.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 03:37 pm (UTC)
Hello! I never mocked them, just expressed disappointment in my friends' regrettably mainstream music choices ;-) But I do agree that they are a real band with real skills. I was especially impressed at how well Simon's voice has held up, and the drumming was simply amazing!

Of course he is. Who is he to cut anyone off from all that rock godliness?!
masquerade: kradam <3true_masquerade on March 28th, 2012 06:05 am (UTC)
Thank you so much for the link to the house of reps survey :-)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 10:31 am (UTC)
You're welcome! I have been meaning to get it up for ages and was prompted by a few far more organised flistees.
mrsquizzicalmrsquizzical on March 28th, 2012 10:24 am (UTC)
i'd love to hear your take on the election results from queensland...

blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 10:30 am (UTC)
Tragically, I can't face the horror! I'll see if I can turn to drink over the weekend and screw up my courage to the sticking place ...
(no subject) - mrsquizzical on March 28th, 2012 10:34 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 03:22 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mrsquizzical on March 28th, 2012 08:07 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(Anonymous) on March 28th, 2012 12:50 pm (UTC)
re spiders: Obviously a basilisk was flushed out of its underground lair
(personally I would have been out with the Mortein surface spray to keep them out of the house).

re gay marriage: Didn't Campbell Newman say that even though he agreed with it, he would repeal the state same-sex partnership legislation in Queensland? Oh, and don't forget that Bob Katter claimed no gays lived north of Rockhampton ...

Cheers, Charlotte
blamebramptonblamebrampton on March 28th, 2012 03:40 pm (UTC)
They're just harmless ones! They eat cockroaches! (Our huntsman population has just had a boom and I saw two juvenilles trying to kill a cockroach in the outside laundry last night, I left them to it!)

Yes, I believe he did. Because apparently satisfying the ACL and a handful of Katterites outweighs human rights, the majority of the populace, common sense ... What is it with Queensland politicians? Give me Rudd with his programmatic specificity over the average ones any day!