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Preview: Happy Antipodean

Happy Antipodean

A blog by Matthew da Silva since 2006

Updated: 2017-05-28T23:38:55.496+10:00


Drifts of leaves


I never realised why they're called "leaves" before, but of course it's because they "leave" the tree and fall to the ground. They are what's left after the annual molt that deciduous trees undergo as they prepare for winter. These are introduced trees. All along Harris Street. And they have left a trail of crunchy dry leaves for everyone to walk on. As people walk on the leaves they are

Social media is becoming more like the world


A long article in the SMH this morning about Twitter co-founder Ev Williams can be profitably read and so can contain some insights into the world of social media. The son of a Nebraska farmer, Williams was always the cerebral type and apparently coming into contact with Wired magazine in the early 90s was a seminal moment for him. He found himself in Silicon Valley where he got involved with

Movie review: Alien: Covenant, dir Ridley Scott (2017)


It's the beginning of the 22nd century and a colonising expedition is travelling across galaxies carrying 2000 colonists in suspended animation, as well as the crew. Accompanying the crew is Walter (Michael Fassbender), a "synthetic" robot with special abilities. One day the crew are disturbed out of suspended animation by a solar event and the ship sustains damage. Then one of the crew

Losing more weight


It is Thursday here in Australia and tomorrow's Friday. I confirmed this earlier when an American friend on Twitter said that tomorrow's not Friday and I said, "It is here." "Great," he said, "how does it all end?" "In tears," I replied, "as usual." "Dammit," he said in reply. But at least we all know what today is anyway. I went to the dentist this morning to get my teeth cleaned. It was the

A walk through Chinatown in autumn


It was a nice day for a walk and they said on the news we would get rain later in the week, so I decided as soon as I woke up that today I would go for a walk. I took my usual route down to Darling Harbour. There was a pair of young women walking and one of them had dust on her backside but I felt too sheepish to say anything about it, and just kept walking through the crowds to the overpass.

Got the internet working again


A couple of weeks ago I may have written about the internet going down here and the problem never really went away even after the telecommunications company sent out a technician to fix it. They did send me a notice by text message saying that they would be sending out another technician - so I needn't have worried - but somehow I forgot about this message in the usual press of everyday things

Movie review: Ghost in the Shell, dir Rupert Sanders (2017)


The main character, Major (Scarlett Johansson) is a transhuman law enforcement android capable of tremendous feats of physical violence. This is a violent movie. Early in the piece, several senior figures in the company Hanka Robotocs - a government supplier that built Major - are targeted, and Major has to find out who is doing the devilry. She narrows the field down to one - Kuze (Michael

Back into walking


It has been several months since I went walking. The hiatus was mainly due to the excessive heat of summer, which made walking uncomfortable. Now that the summer is over I can get back into it. I went down into Darling Harbour today and came across an extraordinary sight. There were hundreds of mothers with babies in prams at the Darling Precinct, near the CBA buildings, all milling about and

Remembering Cyclone Oswald


In 2013 starting on Australia Day Cyclone Oswald started tracking south down the Queensland coast at about 30km per hour. It went all the way down the coast into New South Wales and brought torrential rain to communities up and down the coast including those in the heavily-populated areas of southeast Queensland. I was living in the area at the time and I remember the downpours for two days

Internet is fixed


On Wednesday I posted about the PC crisis which saw me buy both a new PC and a new monitor. The PC crisis, however, was immediately followed by an internet crisis, where the net slowed down to a snail's pace. It reminded me of when I moved back to Sydney in February 2015 and the modem immediately conked out as soon as I moved into this place. That seemed strange by itself, but because it is

A new computer


I had had some problems with the display of the computer because it was blinking repeatedly, and so I thought I could get it to cooperate by pressing some of the buttons on the right hand side of the screen. This was on Saturday. It worked and my call to the technicians was anyway filled and I got the guy to reset my iPad instead. Then when I booted the computer the next day, I got the same

Went out to get some lunch


This morning I was woken up by the telephone and handled the call then got some coffee from the pot of cold coffee. Then I had some wine, and a bit later I went up the street to get some lunch. I had to go to the ATM in the convenience store first, then I ambled up the street to the kaiten sushi shop and ordered a beer. I sat down opposite two young men who obviously knew each other, and

Worried most of the day


I was on the way up to get some lunch at the Vietnamese place when the girl called me and said that she had locked herself out of her apartment. I immediately turned back but she told me not to come. She would fix the problem by herself, she said. I demurred. I continued on my way to the restaurant and ordered a chicken pho, which I ate at a table outside on the street. When I had finished I

A day at the beach


Yesterday morning the girl was over at my place and we got in the car and headed out onto the Western Distributor, taking the Cross City Tunnel to Rushcutters Bay. We turned into Ocean Avenue at the top of the hill and went down to Double Bay and parked the car. Then we went looking for an open restaurant. We found one which has a Brazilian slant and took a seat. We ordered some entrees and a

A day in the mountains


Yesterday morning the girl and I met at Central Station as we had organised to go to the Blue Mountains for the day. We met in the Main Concourse near the newsagent. Inside the gates we bought sandwiches and water for the journey. On platform 18 there was a huge crowd of people waiting to get on the train. and once we were on-board and had secured seats the rest of the people crowded in, with

A quiet day inside


Today I only went outside once: to buy lunch. The rest of the day I was inside. I got up to let in the cleaners and when they had left I went back to bed and slept for a few more hours. But the noise from the remediation works was tremendous, so my sleep was broken and shallow. In the afternoon I wrote two poems, both about drinking. i started drinking this afternoon after about 3pm and kept

Sushi for lunch


This morning I woke up to a phone call from a business associate who wanted to update my details, and after I hung up I got out of bed and made some coffee. It had rained during the night so it was a little dark this morning when I came out to the living room. The air was still cool and crisp, unlike in midsummer when it streams in through the windows like a blast of pure radiation (which of

Sunday dinner at the pub


I got up this morning and spoke to the girl - who had come over last night and stayed after a dinner engagement - and then went back to bed, getting up late. We had some breakfast - including onion soup for me because I had a slight cold, as well as special tasty carrots from the supermarket, and a scrambled egg with carrot and tomato - and then I washed the dishes. I also dried out some

A quiet night at home


The girl stayed over last night so I got up early and drove her home in the car, so that she could get to some meetings on time. I came home in the rush-hours traffic unscathed and parked the car under the building. When I got inside I went back to bed and slept until late, then got up and put on the washing - the sheets on this occasion - and ironed the shirts. Later I went back to bed for a

A trip to the city


This morning I got up late and made some coffee, then checked the emails. There was one from my Japanese lawyer about the property purchase in Japan, and it described documents I had to secure to enable the purchase to go ahead. These included notarised certificates for the power of attorney for my ex-wife, as well as notarised identification documents needed to establish that I am an

A guest to lunch


I got up late and had a cup of coffee then went to the pharmacy to order some drugs - I always have to order these ones, which is a pest but they are necessary - then I went up to Union Square to wait for my lunch guest. I had met Taka when he was small and he had come to Australia to play soccer from Japan, so I had decided to do his mother a favour and help him by having lunch with him. He

Buying a costume


I got up quite late this morning and saw a message from the girl - we had organised to go out this morning - and I had some coffee and left the apartment to go to her house in the car. When I got there I found a parking spot and went upstairs. She was ready to go and soon we were on our way up the Princes Highway then onto Euston Road, where we quickly parked. We walked up to an eatery named

Heavy rain in the afternoon


This morning I got up fairly early because the intercom buzzed when the postie came to deliver my coffee, but I didn't make it to the intercom on time to let him in. I went back to bed and slept for another hour or so, then got up to make some coffee. After drinking a cup I went back to bed and then got up later to iron the shirts. While I was ironing them the girl called for a chat. I went

Noodles in Marrickville


This morning I got up early to let in the cleaners but they sent me a message saying they would be late due to traffic on Parramatta Road. I went back to bed to wait for them and eventually their buzz arrived and I let them into the building. They started doing their thing and I lay down on the couch to wait, with the TV on. When they had finished I paid and went back to bed and had a sleep

Dinner at home


I got up earlyish today and made some coffee then tried to order coffee online from Campos Coffee. Their store in Newtown usually supplies my coffee needs but I wasn't sure about the weather, which in recent times has been a bit erratic, so I didn't want to count on a long walk to get coffee. The website has been upgraded and I discovered that my login details didn't work, so I called Campos's