Thursday

Brisbane demolition: O'Reilly's Bonded Stores and Hotpoint House




Demolition in progress.
The Queensland Heritage Council has voted against State heritage listing of three brick buildings located at 105 to 113A Margaret Street in Brisbane city.

Queensland Heritage Council Chair, Professor Peter Coaldrake, said O’Reilly’s buildings, also known as the ‘Bonded Stores’, did not meet the threshold of heritage significance to the State as a whole.

and

"We looked long and hard at how to reuse the facades but the buildings are of such poor quality design and in such a sad state of disrepair that demolition is the only economic option,'' Mr Robinson said.

Demolition approval had been given for previous applications by other developers and he expected demolition to occur within months, so that a "green pocket park'' could be ready before the G20 summit.


http://brisbaneheritage.org.au/category/the-bonded-stores/
http://brisbaneheritage.org.au/a-glimpse-inside-the-bonded-stores/

Tuesday

The collapsing feeling of self-publishing

[Note: I tried giving this article away. One particular place, the *blog* of the Queensland Writer's Centre —  that is, a centre supporting writers — passed on it. Now, if you can't get a blog to accept your work, then you've been insulted. I present it below for you instead.]

The publishing industry has changed, but very little has changed. Maybe I should be more specific and say the publishing process has changed, that the overall model of what's possible has opened up so that it's both more accessible and cheaper to produce books — especially outside of the regular old channels — in digital or print. Anyone can get into the magic of books; which is a minor revolution, I'd say.

But what hasn't changed? Look at the bookshop window displays: lots of colourful books; lots of diversity. If you think about it, the books on display and reviewed in newspapers, journals and magazines are still largely, or rather almost all, representative of the standard publishing model. By which I mean the large (consolidated, international) publishing houses and the medium trade presses, the industry players.

The window display — our window on publishing — says the industry is healthy because there's so much great stuff being produced. There's familiar and prize-winning authors, authors who can't not get published; there's non-fiction and biographies by the dozen, profile-leveraging tie-ins, young adult and bright fantasy. Now and then a renegade success story, a blockbuster everyone reads on planes or whenever they're not looking at their phone, because everyone else is.

Sunday

Apple pie

So, what cuisine is specifically Dutch? I would argue (cynically, exhaustively) that there isn't any such thing - that isn't somewhat Germanic or even Flemish in influence or source. On the latter score I'd indicate the rich assortment of condiments applied to fries - I'm sure chips & mayo is Flemish, as is chips and chilli sauce and mayo, but then, perhaps exceptionally, chips and satay sauce isn't. OK, I'd make a concession, chips AND mayo AND satay sauce is perhaps uniquely Dutch: 'patatje oorlog' (chips war) is a unique achievement for which the former Dutch occupation of Indonesia may have played a minor causal, historical role. For anyone traveling to Holland, I'd say head to the nearest 'friet tent' and get your hands on a serve of this truly authentic culinary wonder. It's a flavourgasm.
By which preamble to say: the real test of Dutch food is apple pie (appeltaart). Almost any cafe in Holland serves and prides itself on its apple pie. Even train station restaurants, even the Hema department store. Sit down, order coffee and pie (koffie met gebak; there's usually a combo price), and dig into the true taste. House-made? Fresh? Not too soggy? Not too sweet or laden with cinnamon or sultanas? Evenly cooked, finely textured all the way through? A good match with cream? Does the pastry dough have good mouth-feel? Do you want a second piece, and is the view and the setting nice? Is there some vaguely German oompah music playing in the background somewhere...
That's how you get the real cuisine, methinks.

Monday

Pat Metheny - Orchestrion

Pat Metheny - orchestrion review
The Orchestrion in action - this video explains all.
And I realise, watching this now, that Pat probably uses a mix of programmed and live triggers with midi controls on his guitar, to give even more variety/precision.

Monday

Lenny Kravitz: Mama Said: Retropy

Lenny Kravitz - Mama Said - Retro
I forgot to say:
  • the kids who came of age with the internet are probably better at defining music in terms of genre-specifics than in musical-cultural terms. Like we were teens playing the reference game; pretending to be smart like the critics whose reviews we read very closely, back then (Curtis... Curtis Who?). Or is that simply the culture of music now - finer and more arbitrary definitions and gradations of sub- and sub-sub-genres and crossovers. Damon Albarn thinks so.
  • Lenny pre-empted with perfect timing the onset of baby boomer cap N Nostalgia for the classic Rock Sound. And hence helps show up the bankruptcy (creative-sustainability and evolution-wise) of the nostalgia industry - in a setting William Gibson calls the infinite digital Now - where the artefacts of the past are the nurtured, revived & reassuring icons of truth & certainty in a (perceived) uncertain & changing world. Ahem. Or teenage rock memories forever.
  • But notice: "Retro" is everywhere now: cameras, kitchen appliances, motorcycles, glasses, watches... anything collectable, curatable via Ebay, the web... like typewriters. Dialled in like automatic authenticity.
Links

A small, pointed thought experiment

Thought experiment

Sunday

Brisbane type-in 2014

First photos! A great day was had (with fish & chips, 29 degrees, a touch of rain, and of course all the great people of the Australian typosphere! So great to see and meet everyone again. Thanks to Scott for organising).