Just pretend it’s a Tinyletter, Vol 2.

It’s been another fun-filled week here at Chateau Bin Chicken. My area still doesn’t have high-speed internet (I live in the MTM/HFC ghetto) and to do an operating system upgrade yesterday I crossed to a friend’s house on the other side of Darebin Creek (I could have used stepping-stones to get there if I had really wanted) and borrowed a cup of internet. Welcome to Australia in 2018.

Photo taken with Focos
Hitch on one of my stepping stones to broadband goodness.

But I blogress. This week, I’ve been listening to Dan Penn (the fella in the image way up on top there), especially The Fame Recordings. You ought to own that, and you ought to own it on vinyl. While you’re on a confusing soul vibe, get your teeth around Durand Jones and the Indications, especially Make A Change. Yeah, I know this music is from a couple of years back, but it’s been on high rotation here for about three months now.

Did I mention that Canada’s finest Sloan released “12”? If anyone wants to buy the day-glo poster dealio for me, I would be forever grateful.

By the way, Patrick Pentland, that is a nice beard.

Insert Kanye ‘joke’ here

We all woke up a couple of days ago to find out that Yeezy had finally decided to support Donald Trump, call slavery a choice, and handed us all the chance to make up a tweet that had “Klan-ye West” as the dribbled-out punchline. Because this is the new and improved me, I didn’t make that joke on twitter (I checked, and someone else had already made it). I hoped that Ta-nehisi Coates would weigh in on the issue, and his latest piece in The Atlantic made me glad I’d kept my mouth shut. Sometimes you just have to let the adults speak.

We’re still all over the place when it comes to sex

The Guardian’s piece on “The Future of Sex Work” showed how to cover the issue of sex work in Australia without overt sensationalisation or titillation (maybe the image of leather collars and cuffs was unnecessary?) at the same time as The Age ran a piece on the way people looked down on a woman who looked for sexual contact in the wake of her husband’s death.

Kate Iselin’s piece on Sesta-Fosta “Why don’t feminists care about dead sex workers?” came out a couple of weeks ago, but is worth going back to as we hear that the Victorian Liberal Party suddenly “cares” about sex workers so much that it plans to drive them underground again via the seemingly harmless-sounding Nordic Model.

Film and TV

Like everyone else in the world this past week, I went and saw the MacGuffin-filled new Avengers movie (my choice was IMAX 3D — the only way to see spectacle films like this). Stephen Kearse makes the argument that the MacGuffins make the film work, and I am inclined to agree. I don’t care why dopey-Thor does things — I just want him to make things be all explodey. I also want to see more of the Bluths in the MCU.

HBO’s “Westworld” is getting proper weird now, and I’m hooked again.

Podcasts? We’ve got podcasts.

Dr Peter McGraw (author of The Humor Code) has launched his new podcast, in which he has conversations with people he thinks are funny — from all walks of life. I’m in an upcoming episode, and I have to be honest, I don’t remember being very funny in it at all. Keep an eye out, or just avoid my episode entirely.

Also with a newish podcast is comrade Helen Razer. The 200th anniversary of the birth of Karl Marx is a perfect time to subscribe to Knackers and the Vadge and to give it some love on iTunes. If you’re looking for an accessible primer to Marxism, Razer’s “Total Propaganda” has you covered. For the Audible-inclined, you’ll just have to make do with the audiobook of “The Helen 100“, the story of her path to love via a path of strewn chicken bones.


We are all responsible for what we put into the world. I don’t buy the crocodile tears of the internet industry. Peter Dutton is terrifying and you should fear him. Americans smile too much and it’s freaky. My dishwasher sold, like super-fast.

That’s it for now. Next time you go to send a friend a text message, make it a phone call and ask your friend what they’ve been doing lately.

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