Harold Bishop has a posse

The Rae St Institute > Blog archive > Wheels; The Breakfast of Decadents; Time-travelling Werewolf Pirates

Coasting home down High Street on my way back from the suburbs the other night, it struck me just how long it is since I've posted anything bike-related. And for that matter, how bloody long it is since I've written anything topical. There's nothing quite like barelling down a hill at 3am on a freshly-tuned bike to stir up recall of all the things you should really be doing, and all the things you've forgotten to do.

It's not that I don't *think* of writing about these things, it's just that by the time I get around to actually doing it, it's so long after the fact that I can't see the point. Though there's a complicating factor. Recently, I began to suspect a massive, co-ordinated Conspiracy of Machines affecting my ability to do interesting activite and cycling-related things.

As a prime example, there's the debacle on the day of the IR protests. Early to rise, a good breakfast, plenty of time, and a brisk walk down towards the CBD... early enough that I was walking the whole way.

And then not long after I crossed Johnston St, an SMS:

ALERT: Link failure detected.

Random chunks of Teh Interweb in the northern suburbs had just fallen over (including the entire batcave here at The Institute) so my brisk chirpy coffee-fuelled morning walk to the city to engage in some long-lacking public expression of anger at arrogant conservative cunts inappropriate policy decisions was instead replaced with a panicked run back to the office and fretting, nail-biting stares at a rack full of equipment that was just shrugging at me..

Somewhere in Telstra's Northcote or Exhibition exchanges something had imploded, meaning a fair few other people nearby were also offline, and I'm led to believe huge chunks of the union movement's websites were down, possibly related to the same issue. A client rang me demanding to know why his site wasn't working, and when I explained it was a fault somewhere within Telstra he promptly started on a diatribe about "those fucking unionists" and how they were sabotaging everything this morning..

Somewhere in this mix he thought it relevant to harp about how his car hadn't started that morning.


Thus some "fucking unionist" had obviously broken silently into his garage at 3am to fuck his car up in some completely non-obvious way...?


Arseholes regularly figure as catalysts in these events... from my dodgy, slimy, two-faced lying prick of a new property manager who failed to respond to the fact that there was water pouring down my lounge room walls every time it rained -- FOR A MONTH -- to shithouse interstate techs failing to set stuff up properly resulting in a subsequent failure.

The latter of the aforementioned arsehole types resulted in half a week of sleep deprivation and constant anger as a network I manage interstate gradually totally collapsed -- In the days leading up to CM10.

I got there, in the end, but late. Really late. After 7pm late. The type of lateness that's neither fashionable nor exemplifying some kind of raucous drunken directionless energy that meant you spent all day hammered in unfamiliar terrain and had to pick your way back with a Sherpa as your guide.

... but Sweet Mother Of Crap!
Assorted people not embroiled in machine-related frustration.
Over one thousand people.

Best mass ever. (So I hear, grr..)

A friend said that at the moment of death, where your life flashes before your eyes -- reduced of course to privileged moments --she'll be riding in CM10.

She was totally serious. The mass itself had a few dodgy incidents with assorted drunk cunts (who were waiting for a bus to Sydney, I believe..), but overall it was fantastic (supposedly.. argh.) The after-sprawl on the oval at Edinburgh Gardens was awesome. A great mix of people, and we got to watch thunderstorms roll by without actually getting wet.

And I wasn't there for half of proceedings. As a result my photos were crap, though the rather good supplied homebrew might have had a bit to do with that, and the fact that I don't pull my camera out half as much as I should these days.

But it's primarily down to the fact that I'd spent all day fixing machine-related disasters, and hadn't slept properly for three days.

Fucking conspiracies.

I'm starting to think that Paul Virilio was right, and totalitarianism is latent in technology. Or at least some kind of scurrilous Bolt-esque subversion of anything that doesn't agree with a very narrow conservative world-view.

In fact -- as we speak -- an assortment of old computer parts just snuck out from their hiding place in the cupboard, opened an old chest of drawers in the hallway, pulled out a framed picture of Castro and smashed it into a million tiny pieces.

I knew it.

There's something profoundly decadent and yet strangely beautiful about having a breakfast consiting of bacon, eggs, muffins and beer... at 5PM.

On a Thursday.

When you don't even have a hangover, you just didn't feel like getting out of bed.

And you don't really eat bacon.

See, the next few weeks are given over to a kind of ersatz-bohemian decadence predicated on the fact that I'm not doing *any* work of the immediately-paying kind, instead I'm trying to write my next film. I actually started on it back in June, but that was when it was going to be a 10 minute short.

Being that there are very very very very few short films I actually like, I can't really bring myself to make one, I think.. so rather than being something simple it gradually ballooned out to 100 pages of scribbled notes and fragments. Now I need to actually turn it into a solid text resembling a script so I can start foisting it on other people out there to read it in order to discover if it's full of shit, and if not, make something of it.

I'm not going to summarise what I'm working on here, because it's not World's Best Practice and doesn't meet ISO-9038.51 to do so (myself being a stickler for procedure, proper practice, and all that). Instead I'm just going to sit here and do cocaine with former Television stars while they do my housework completely naked and occasionally pause to hand me money leave it as a mystery to be addressed at some stage in the future.

The fact that this house has two lounge rooms, only one regular inhabitant, and rather fearsome beer stocks, means that it's actually quite well decked out for extreme laziness and idle behaviour; befitting someone with bigger ears (and more expensive clothes) than me, who's sitting on a massive trust fund set up by Daddy using the revenue from an investment account in the Canary Islands starting from October 1986.

But instead it's populated by a latent gym-nut with alarmingly shrinking capital reserves, and a penchant for blowing huge quantities of (currently limited) cash on nights that are barely - if at all - remembered. Decadence on a shoestring budget is a little bit tenuous, and bacon/eggs/beer may be about as good as it gets for now. Harden not my fucking arteries indeed.

Now and then people will claim there's no class system in this country. We don't have a class system in the sense of Britain, or any number of countries like India with rigid castes; we don't have the Ivy League style institutions of the US, and East Cost Old Money (to the same extent), but we do certainly have a class system. Most of the expressions of it, though, are Machine-Conspiracy style arseholes expressing their pent-up need to be complete fuckheads by abusing those they consider lower on the ladder. This is mathematically similar to the recent events in Cronulla, also 4WD owners, and roid-loaded gym-goers beating up cleaning staff.

Indulging the early stages of my late-afternoon-morning egg-binge, I sat at a cafe on Brunswick Street doing the fake-bohemian thing, and trying to write something while drinking coffee and eating Eggs Benedict at 4PM. The big friendly guy who sells the Big Issue on the street and occasionally on trams came in hawking the Christmas issue. Now let me bracket this by explaining that he didn't address anyone directly, just calmly and discreetly pointed out simple journalistic facts "Dude here --> Dude is carrying copies of Big Issue". I half heard him, and kept scribbling away at something nonsensical describing a CNN story about The Fattest Man In The World, until my zen-like fake-bohemian state of self-indulgence was broken by terse and extremely foul-smelling shit being splattered on the walls to my right.

Assorted self-important "humans", yesterday.
"Go away, we're having a serious conversation."

"Hey, hey, there's no need to be so rude--"

"Just go away. Yeah, go on, piss off."

Three haggard, 35-going-on-60, trowel-painted, ersatz-socialite
(By ersatz-socialite I'm not valorising "real" socialites.. I just mean that "socialite" and "sociopath" are not compatible groupings.)
women, discussing relationships like year 8 kids, had taken it upon themselves to abuse this guy just trying to make an honest fucking dollar. At Christmas.

All sharp angles and leathery, scaly faces, awkwardly pinstriped like Grandma's Rusty Peugeot with pricey, bunny-tested epoxy in a desperate attempt to underscore and validate their practiced sense of superiority and "refinement", each having recently arrived in their respective BMW coupe or SsangYong retrieved (while distracting a small, excessively-groomed yappy dog) from beige rendered garages somewhere in the Eastern Suburbs.

As the guy came back past me towards the door I stopped him, said "Actually, yeah, I'll have one" while looking directly at the three concerned, and added "What the fuck is wrong with people? No respect."

"Yeah. Is it any wonder stuff like Cronulla happens?" he replied, and we had a brief chat about people being so stuck up their own arses and insistent upon the strict TV-series decorum and shithouse magazine dress-code of their stupid little bubbles NEVER UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES BEING VIOLATED OR EVEN NUDGED BY ANYTHING on pain of vast torrents of nonsensical abuse.

I remembered a time when someone abused me because I dared to pull them up on the fact that before parking their 4WD, the mobile phone conversation they'd been having had meant they were swerving all over Swanston Street and could easily have killed someone... see they were going to call the police because there was quite obviously NO WAY they were to be spoken to like that.

I remembered a time when someone in the old Spencer Street Station subway abused the kiosk staff in front of me while I waited to buy a coffee before catching a train to Sydney.

I laughed at her a little, caught the eye of the poor recipient of her abuse and shook my head.. she whipped around mid-abusive-sentence and started on me. "YOUVEGOTNORIGHTOLOOKATMELIKETHATWHOAREYOUTO--"

I started laughing. Hard.

She walked away.

Why are people so fucking arrogant? A Big Issue Vendor walks into a cafe. DEAL WITH IT. The coffee is 50c more than you think it should be. DEAL WITH IT. You fuck up, someone pulls you up on it. DEAL WITH IT. Are there steroids in the water? Does the outgassing of plastic and emission of high concentrations of phthalates and VOCs (otherwise known as that New Car Smell) trigger weird chemical reactions in the brain that turns people into complete Arseholes?

I didn't directly address the three concerned, because there'd be no point. The vendor and I made a point of having a loud conversation pondering why people have to be so bloody rude (and what insecurities drive it) though.. but myself not being attired in the appropriate current-season Hugo Boss at the time would have clearly been several rungs below them on the ladder and thus not worth listening to. I wanted, however, to vomit profusely in their coffee, then reassure them that my vomit was Genuine Italian and therefore not only acceptable, but a must.

A strange sound emanates within the cafe: an echo without a noise, a vowel without a consonant, the reverb turned right up but the original signal completely attenuated.


The venomous trowel-painted three chime in:


"I believe, if I'm not mistaken, it was the sound, reverberating from a parallel universe, of the Steppenwolf punching all three of you in the face. Hard."

*** At this time I would like to announce the formation of the North Fitzroy chapter of the Federation of Time-Travelling Werewolf Pirates, dedicated to the suppression of general cuntyness, practiced senses of superiority, and That New Car Smell, wherever and whenever they appear, by anti-violence-violent* means if necessary. Meeting time and location TBA. Membership fees payable in gold bullion. For Lunatics Only.

Thankyou, and good day.

*Anti-violence-violence was retrospectively invented in 1979 by The Institute as a means of preventing Cronulla-style events by targeted, surgical strikes using crack teams of highly trained assault monkeys, widespread application of pseudoscience, and the complete replacement of Television with a form of cannabis-laced muesli.

1 Comment - [post a comment]

cfsmtb, Friday, December 23, 2005, 3:49 AM
I used to work for high profile nutjob from W*rld V*s*on. She was practically certifiable. She didn't require a vinyl repairer/beautician, she was in frigging dire need of the local CAT Team. Also, she thought I was a 'little girl'. Which was fucking hilarious. I was born three years before her.