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Preview: Happy Antipodean

Happy Antipodean



A blog by Matthew da Silva since 2006



Updated: 2017-04-23T22:06:06.911+10:00

 



Got the internet working again

2017-04-07T12:01:53.991+10:00

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)

2017-03-31T17:26:19.851+11:00

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

2017-03-29T13:24:28.459+11:00

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

2017-03-28T20:25:35.172+11:00

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

2017-03-27T12:03:35.937+11:00

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

2017-03-24T20:05:58.033+11:00

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

2017-03-20T12:51:01.446+11:00

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



Wrote two poems today

2017-02-14T19:23:55.420+11:00

I got up this morning a bit early and made some coffee, then went back to bed and slept for a couple more hours. It was raining fairly hard this morning, and when I got up the second time it was still raining. I sat down at the computer and checked poems done the day before. I saw that one of them needed some more work, and I worked a bit more on another poem from last week as well. Then I



Grateful to live in a stable society

2017-02-09T14:27:48.528+11:00

I got up late this morning and made some coffee, as usual, of which I drank two cups before going back to bed for about 25 minutes. But it was no good. I couldn't go back to sleep, and if you can't go to sleep what's the point of being alone in bed? So I got up and dressed, then went into the bathroom to get two prescriptions that my psychiatrist had filled out. I took a walk down to the



Got the car rego done

2017-02-07T19:31:10.952+11:00

This morning I was up early to get the car to the garage at 8am for a registration inspection. When I arrived the floor manager said that it had been a year almost since my last car service, and he asked me if I wanted them to do another one. I said yes. When I had handed over the keys I walked out of the garage along Ross Street and luckily an empty cab was on the street, so I got in and came



Writing poetry again

2017-02-05T14:50:20.759+11:00

This morning I had an inkling about the first line of a poem and instead of ignoring the inkling as I would normally do I sat down to the computer and opened up the last Word file from 2015 and copied it with a new name: '2017 sonnets'. I had a nervous feeling tinged with excitement in my stomach as I wrote the first words of the poem I had started in my head. The next line followed and as I



Movie review: Paterson, dir Jim Jarmusch (2016)

2017-02-05T12:37:16.817+11:00

Nothing much happens in the lives of Paterson (Adam Driver) a bus driver in Paterson, New Jersey, and his girlfriend Laura (Golshifteh Farahani). While he gets up every morning without an alarm clock at almost exactly the same time - he says there is something special about his watch - she stays at home and paints everything black and white (her favourite colour combination). They have a



We need more courage to be compassionate in social media

2017-01-30T13:47:17.247+11:00

Today someone posted, quite plaintively, "Someone post something kind, please?" And I immediately understood her feelings; I replied: I know what you mean. I think people need to be more considerate on social media, they think it's ok just to prosecute their own biases there. But it's not. We need to share things. Social media is a community. We create it when we share. The thing is that I



On hospitals

2017-01-17T22:17:31.800+11:00

It's so hot and even though it's getting late there's no point in going to bed because I've been dozing on and off all day and the night-time temperature will be excessive tonight, so I decided to sit a while and write about something that I talked to a friend about not long ago. We were talking about hospitals and I said to her that I always felt compelled to stand up for these institutions,



Movie review: La La Land, dir Damien Chazelle (2016)

2017-01-09T16:38:28.109+11:00

There's no definitive image that encapsulates the major themes of this movie so I just chose an image of Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) and Mia (Emma Stone) looking into each other's eyes. The movie was a nice surprise, as I wasn't expecting much from a 2-hour rom-com where the main character is Hollywood itself. But Stone and - to a lesser extent - Gosling do bring out the best the script and the



Blowing bubbles

2017-01-07T16:31:47.055+11:00

This morning I took a walk down to Darling Harbour and saw that they had put up the ferris wheel again, after taking it down for the New Year festivities. They have also set up a big sandbox occupying about 100 square metres on the esplanade, with wooden sides and wooden chairs on the sand for people to sit on. There was one man doing little jumps for someone sitting in one of the chairs at



Some thoughts on using social media

2016-12-31T10:29:31.059+11:00

Because the end of the year seems to be a time when everybody looks back over the past year and makes judgements, I thought I would take a look at some of the things that have occurred to me about using social media, which after all is a place where we spend growing amounts of time. It's not a trivial aspect of our lives any more, I think we can safely say. In fact, for some people - like me -



Reveries during my quotidian walk

2016-12-28T13:05:51.063+11:00

This morning for a change I went on my usual walk through Chinatown and up Harris Street. On the approaches to Darling Harbour the crowd-control fences had been put up leaving gaps so people could pass through. On the evening of 31 December those gaps will be closed off to limit the number of people who can go onto the Pyrmont Bridge and into the pedestrian area of Darling Harbour. I saw a



It's Christmas Day

2016-12-25T10:18:16.013+11:00

Well here we are again at Christmas time on a hot day in Sydney. The sun is out and the air is quiet as everything living takes shelter; all I can hear is the occasional cry from a group of revellers down in the park or in one of the highrises around here. Even the birds are mainly still and mute; an occasional trill reminds me of the presence somewhere out there of something living. But I



Boys dressed as girls

2016-12-06T12:38:26.245+11:00

When I was walking down to Darling Harbour I saw a group of boys dressed as girls. Well, in fact one of the boys was dressed as a box of beer, but that's just the way it turned out. In the main, the boys were dressed as girls. One of them was walking along in high heels and a skirt, waving at people on the opposite side of the road with his mouth fixed in a grin. It was funny, I suppose,



A new television

2016-12-02T16:39:17.869+11:00

Yesterday morning after extracting some cash from the ATM at the convenience store I headed up the hill to go on my usual walk around Chinatown but the thought of the diminishing sound quality on my TV brought me back home, where I measured the old TV with a tape measure. I left the building this time via the fourth floor, which has a door that lets you out onto the park at the back of the



A sick pigeon

2016-11-28T15:15:57.823+11:00

As I was walking down Dixon Street near Goulburn Street today I saw a sick pigeon sitting on he pavement. The poor creature looked bedraggled and wan, just sitting there on the grey pavement with its feathers sort of ruffled and not smooth. It's head was down pointing toward the pavement and its shoulders were hunched. Probably if I were a kinder and more decent human being I would have



Up on Manning River

2016-11-21T10:48:33.475+11:00

On Friday I got in the car about midday and drove north onto the Pacific Highway on the way to my cousin's place on the Manning River, which is located a couple of hours north of Newcastle. The trip up took four-and-a-half hours. I could feel the steering wheel start to vibrate at around 110km/hr but as usual I sat at around 90km/hr to 100km/hr for most of the trip even though the highway in



Reflections on my state of mind

2016-11-14T13:58:08.452+11:00

Over the past few days people have been contacting me about my blogposts asking if I was feeling suicidal, because I had said that I was happy with life and could end it without any qualms. But I think that the blogposts contain quite another message. In fact, I think that it is an extremely life-affirming stance to take. I was thinking about these things while I was taking my usual walk



Sitting inside on a November day

2016-11-13T18:16:40.030+11:00

Yesterday morning I went for a walk in company to Barangaroo instead of to Chinatown and ended up not in the park (it's such a tiny little park) but in a gelato bar having a flat white while my companion had a gelato milkshake (if there is such a thing). I caught a bit of sun, as you can see. It was a hot and sunny day and we were walking at the hottest time of the day. I got back home today