Saturday, June 28, 2008

Caffeine addict

You know, if I could separate food and fashion, there is a 40 per cent chance that I would not only be able to fit into my clothes better, but that my clothes might be cleaner - it's actually scientifically proven that white cotton and red wine/Coke/orange juice/anything with staining potential are attracted to each other (Plausible? Yes. True? If you think that gullible isn't in the dictionary.)

But coffee - coffee is a different story, my friends. It cannot be separated. How else do you think everyone manages to stay so skinny and AWAKE in the industry? It's not those "eight" glasses of water a day - and they don't sell V overseas.

What's more, no coffee = a massive chunk of the colour wheel gone MIA. Espresso, mocha and latte with a dash of caramel and cream - colours that would exist, but not in the same way we look at them thanks to coffee. So enjoy this spread that's filled with all these lovely rich colours. And get a coffee (although I highly suggest waiting till tomorrow morning - coffee now is like arriving at the toll booth with fifty cents in your wallet. NOT GOOD.).

Click to enlarge.


P.s. More work exp stuff soon!

Images:,, Mollini, Witchery Fashions, Jo Malone, Skullbulb, Perlekes via Deviantart.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Work experience: Work it, baby!

DAY 1:

9:30 Pick up work experience insurance, think to self: “half an hour is PLENTY of time to get to the other side of Central”.
9:35 Get food.
9:40 Check email while eating.
9:43 Give money to awesome accordion busker wearing jester hat in the tunnel.
9:44 Power walk through tunnel. Still plenty of time, but still.
9:54 Emerge from tunnel, realise there are no street signs, shrug shoulders and think: "Well it’s not like there are THAT many streets right next to Central Station. How can this NOT on the right street?"
9:56 Realise that I am, indeed, NOT on the right street and start to panic.
9:58 See men in business suits, and with obvious logic, decide to follow them.
9:59 Make it into building JUST IN TIME. Float through doors feeling good like everything’s just fine.
10:00 Only to realise I have to line up to sign in anyway >sigh<

Okay, so I love this magazine. Really. Its shiny pages and clean, modern layout that is glamorous and intelligent while being down-to-earth, plus excellent writing and appealing topics are part of the reason I was attracted to journalism in the first place. The fact that a comedian whom I like very much periodically appears in its pages doesn’t hurt either.

Which means that if work experience here were crap – I’d be depressed. VERY depressed. It’d be meeting your favourite actor after having adored them for twenty years and realising they’re a complete idiot.

But it wasn’t crap, thank goodness. MK, the person in charge of me/does something to do with editorial, took me with her to get a coffee and we had a nice chat, I asked her what her role was exactly and she asked me about my part-time job. MK seems to be a really lovely person, and I’m glad she’s looking after me. Everyone else in the office seemed lovely too – I was only introduced to two other people in the all-female office (although funnily enough, when we had cake later in the afternoon, a man appeared) and they were funny, chatty and nice. Which helped me not feel like the biggest outsider/retard in the world. Excellent.

I had this expectation that I would be photocopying all day and generally being slave labour (see first post) and that would be fine because then they’d see I didn’t mind doing the boring jobs and they’d say something about a “good work ethic” yadda yadda yadda. But whoopee! I got to do * real * work. Not that I mind doing the boring jobs but still – who wouldn’t prefer transcribing interviews over photocopying? Especially interviews from a show that possibly has more crazy wackadoodle nuts than this season’s Big Brother! That sort of made up for the fact that I was doing it for SIX HOURS. (With lunch break and copious amounts of toilet breaks in between – there’s only so long you can listen to people blather about themselves. Really!)

And at the end of the day I got an early mark. So yes, it was fun. Yes, it was repetitive. Yes, I became a little crazy after transcribing interviews for six hours, (work experience insurance doesn’t cover mental health, does it?) but from what I can see so far, I’m going to really enjoy the place.


Barack's In... Now What?

Its official: Senator Barack Obama is the presumptive nominee for the Democratic Party to face the Republican senator John McCain in November. Campaign slogans are being brandished about, but with the economy the number one concern of American voters, what does it all mean? BONITA SILVA reports.

The brandishing about of optimistic concepts was central to Barack Obama's campaign against Hillary Clinton: “change we can believe in” and the power of “hope” were the sentiments on which his general rhetoric was based. But since securing the Democratic nomination for the upcoming presidential election, Obama has taken a different tact. Now embarking on his general election campaign, Obama has become more focussed, specific, and grounded in his direction.

On the 9th of June he delivered a speech on the economy in Raleigh, N.C. In this address to 900 invited guests, Obama sustained an attack on McCain's agenda, asserting that "we were promised a fiscal conservative. Instead, we got the most fiscally irresponsible administration in history. And now John McCain wants to give us another. Well, we've been there once, We're not going back."

This is the core accusation and argument from Obama. Voting for McCain will result in nothing but a continuation of Bush's policies, from Iraq to the economy.

According to a CNN poll released last week, the economy topped Iraq, healthcare, terrorism and immigration as the most significant issue on voter’s minds.

The Obama campaign has shown that it is well aware of the voter’s concerns. Opening his two-week tour of contested states, the focus on the ailing economy was evident. He spoke of the loss of jobs over five consecutive months; more than 320,000 since the beginning of 2008.

“The percentage of homes in foreclosure and late mortgage payments is the highest since the Great Depression. The price of oil has never been higher and set a record on Friday for the largest one-day spike in history,” he said during his address.

For him, the cause of the crisis of the American economy is clear: “We did not arrive at the doorstep of our current economic crisis by some accident of history. This was not an inevitable part of the business cycle that was beyond our power to avoid. It was the logical conclusion of a tired and misguided philosophy that has dominated Washington for far too long.”

He proposed his own strategies to combat the issue should he be elected. A $50 billion economic stimulus package (a special package of spending and tax measures to enhance economic activity), relief for homeowners who face foreclosure, tax cuts for middle-income families/retirees, and an expansion of unemployment benefits.

Speaking at the National Small Business Summit in Washington, McCain highlighted the different approaches to the economy by the two candidates.

"No matter which of us wins in November, there will be change in Washington. The question is, what kind of change? ... Will we enact the largest single tax increase since the Second World War, as my opponent proposes, or will we keep taxes low for families and employers? ... This election offers Americans a very distinct choice about what kind of change we will have."

Clearly, in terms of the economic policy spectrum, McCain and Obama are on polar ends. Where Obama asserts that government should level the playing field for the lower income families/workers, McCain is the ‘classic fiscal conservative’ who believes in lowering taxes by small government.

Accusations of continuing Bush’s policies are apparent in McCain’s support in making the Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 permanent. He believes lower tax rates would boost the economy and increase savings.

Obama would keep the Bush tax cuts but has a slight variation which is aligned with his overall position on the economy. The tax cuts would no longer be in place for those Americans earning roughly $250,000 a year or more. Income taxes would also be abolished for seniors earning an annual income less than $50,000.

The Democratic candidate said, “My vision involves both a short-term plan to help working families who are struggling to keep up and a long-term agenda to make America competitive in a global economy.”

Though at this point, one thing is certain as the Republic candidate said, “We offer very different choices to the American people.”

Image: Tonx's Flickrstream

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Work experience: episode 1

Work experience: two words that are synonymous with both "Sweet. Unpaid labour!" or "I do these crappy things so that one day I might get a JOB THAT'S BETTER THAN YOURS, SLAVE DRIVER."

The English language is indeed fickle. In fact, it's even worse when you consider that sometimes there is work experience that doesn't fit into either meaning. Which is what I hope this will be - since it can't be the former, I HOPE IT'S NOT THE LATTER (please please please please).



Before day 1:

What do you wear to work experience?
Answer 1. "Indigo jeans and a nice white top," says the boy.
Answer 2. "Girl jeans. Everyone looks good in girl jeans," says the ex-boy.
Answer 3. Black chiffon dress + black opaques + black mary jane (see pics below)

Yo. Sounds good, we have two voting for the same thing, a decision can be made, I LIKE IT.

Except that I'm short and I'm too lazy to get my jeans altered so I have to roll them up and I look daggier than I did when I was eight and my parents bought me ANIME CLOTHES to wear. Okay, maybe not quite.

But in any case, after subjecting the boy to six or seven outfit photos, I finally decided on answer 3 + vintage gold chain + cream military coat from Bardot (before I looked too goth - did I mention my hair is dark too?)

Also, work experience insurance. Now, before anyone says anything bad about UTS, I just have to say that the girl who organises this is possibly THE reason that UTS does so well in journalism - she is an ANGEL at organising last-minute insurance for all these idiotic students. Such as me. Who had to fax in the insurance form overnight so she could have it signed first thing in the morning before I went to work experience. Gosh, I'm a douche.

Anyway, tune in for Day 1 tomorrow!


And please - don't say anything about me looking retarded, okay? That's how I look normally. Yes, my face does look like that normally and my head is normally cut off. So I'll actually be quite offended if you say anything.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Pretty pictures: Damn them.

Click to enlarge. In the first image, left to right: Berrin Noorata, Abbey Drucker and Heidi Bivens.

Images:,, Betts Shoes, Zu Shoes, Mico-Mico, Witchery Fashions, Sportsgirl Australia,, Luxe Accessories, Viva La Frock and American Apparel.

Literary Treason: Shakespeare’s makeover, Innit.

Dorset author Martin Baum wasn't prepared for the global acknowledgement and success the book would generate.

The complexities of Elizabethan language have been replaced with ‘Yoof-speak’, opening up the world of Shakespeare to youth that might otherwise have given the playwright a miss. The man responsible for the transformation, Martin Baum, speaks to Bonita Silva about what it is like to be adored and abhorred.

England’s most prominent playwright has been subject to a memorable makeover; from traditional Bard, to a man possessing his many “fit bitches”. It’s this candid humour and satire that lends Martin Baum’s re-writing of William Shakespeare an endearing quality and amicability typically lost in literary works.

In a new compendium, ‘To Be or Not To Be, Innit,’ English satirist Martin Baum has reworked the Bard’s Elizabethan language into ‘a yoof-speak guide to Shakespeare’. Amongst 15 of the classic plays, are titles such as Macbeff, Two Geezas of Verona, and Romeo and His Fit Bitch Jools.

Although criticism and praise alike has been aloft in every corner of the literary bandwagon, Baum’s website asserts the book has stayed true to the original texts by “retaining all the important sexist, duplicitous, cross-dressing and violent moments that made William Shakespeare well wicked.”

Written by a man who adored literature and wanted to make Shakespeare more accessible to those who would otherwise share no interest, Baum has always tried to infiltrate his work with an entertaining aspect, and ‘To Be or Not To Be, Innit’ was no different.

“Although I wanted to turn people on to Shakespeare, I never gave a thought to ‘educating’ them. I only wanted to open their eyes through my interpretation and to be aware,” he says.

According to the synopsis for the tragedy Hamlet’s equivalent tale: ‘Amlet, Prince of Denmark, “Dere was somefing minging in de State of Denmark which was making Amlet all uncool,” where his love interest Ophelia becomes “de fit bitch he wanted to be all jiggy jiggy with.”

Traditionalists and the Shakespeare dedicated may have a problem or two: “When my book first grabbed headlines around the world, it seemed that everyone had an opinion on Shakespeare or, more to the point, the author.

“Although I received a lot of positive comments I was also receiving much negativity from people who hadn’t actually read the book but were still, nevertheless, outraged that in their eyes I had committed what amounted to literary treason, because I was perceived to have had the audacity to have rewritten Shakespeare. I haven’t.”

The Shakespeare Institute which is part of the University of Birmingham, is situated in Stratford-upon-Avon – Shakespeare’s birthplace. Director, Professor Kate Mcluskie believes it okay to reword the original works, though says it’s different: “like Mozart tuning without the orchestration.”

She says it’s only ‘literary treason’ if you view Shakespeare as the King or the bible. “He is neither of these and his plays do go on being a source for new forms of creativity - some of which is more creative, some less.”

Although Professor Mcluskie admits she hasn’t read Baum’s work, she says, “I doubt if it is any different from the hundreds of parodic versions that have existed since the eighteenth century. It may be as witty and iconoclastic as any parody but it is certainly not new.”

A Burberry-clad and blinged out Shakespeare has redefined the classics in a youth oriented manner.

Unsurprisingly, Mr. Baum has received several pieces of fan mail; mostly positive, with the occasional dearly offended.

One fan opposes Mcluskie’s view of interpretations being synonymous and identical. Jennifer from Australia says, “I have thought for years that someone should translate the Bards works into plain English, but never thought it would be so cleverly done and it shouldn't offend the purists because it is so very different.”

Two 15 year old girls shared a conflicting viewpoint. Mr. Baum averts The Small Print’s attention to the spelling, punctuation, and grammatical inaccuracies. Jenna and Shauni write, “hHe should not appreciated because he calls juliet a ‘fit bitch’ that is just disgraceing his name… the plays should not be changed for unrespectful teenagers. They should be educated in the elizabethian language not today's disgusting slang.”

Mr. Baum believes nothing has altered, and the storyline remains the same.

“No matter how progressive society thinks it is, and no matter how hard people try to take on the Establishment, elitism will always be a part of it as reaction, as my book has shown,” he says.

Professor Mcluskie however believes the question is whether it is a good parody or silly parody: “Some of the bloggers think it is the latter. It sounds as though it might offend so called ‘yoof’ more than it offends serious literary critics.”

Yet offence to youth may not be the obstruction. Street slang is part of evolution, an accepted part of society Baum says. Professionals and everyday people alike utilise abbreviations in text messages without sparing a thought for their facilitation of a “mangled English evolution.”

A critique Mr. Baum shares harps on the beauty of Shakespeare’s language. Editor of The Shakespeare Post, John Lawrence believes rewriting his language into “yoof-speak” means it “becomes a joke or a novelty.”

Mr. Lawrence is quick to dismiss the work, for “the only real relevance or positive outcome of this story is that Mr. Baum receives free PR for several days.”

Mixed reactions are nothing new. Baum says, “To some I’m exploiting and making a mockery of Shakespeare. I’ve been called a smug academic who’s too white and privileged to understand ‘the street’ and even, as disturbing as it sounds, a figure of hate.

“But to many I’m actually making a difference to, amongst others, parents or ordinary families who remember only too well how difficult it was studying Shakespeare when they were at school.”

When asked to conjure up a pick up line for Romeo had he been de fit bitch Jules sittin’ at de bar, Baum tells The Small Print, “Oy, sex on de stick, is you lookin’ for jiggy jiggy?”

From “getting maximum respect from all de boyz in de ghetto” with Macbeff, to “larging it and being so wicked with everyone” with Jools Ceasar – where to from here?

“Although the Bible was tempting, I think Charles Dickens is a natural progression,” he says.

Images: Provided by author

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Leaders Special Edition: Barack Obama

Hope/change vs 'experience'

You were going to be officially introduced to none other than Hilary Clinton, election '08 hopeful...but seeing as she seems to have been beaten by Obama, the spotlight is on him.

Barack Hussein Obama Jr. was a junior US Senator for Illinois from 1997 - 2004, and a nominee of the Democratic Party in the 2008 Presidential Campaign. Early in his campaign, opinion polls showed that Hilary Clinton was favoured over Obama. After a long campaign against rival Hilary Clinton, his powerful speeches and political strategy finally lead to his victory early this morning.

But Ms Clinton has not put an end to her political career just yet. She has shown interest in becoming Obama's vice-presidential running mate, believing that she can help the party. However, she has not yet given up on her own campaign.

Though he is not yet the next President of America, he is the first 'black' candidate to lead a major political party into a campaign for the Presidency. In the final 5-month stretch of his campaign, he will be up against Republican, John McCain. The victor will be the 44th President of the US.

Obama has had many influential supporters over the course of his campaign so far, including talk-show host, Oprah Winfrey and former Democratic presidential candidate, John Edwards (who pulled out from the primary race in January this year).