Today is a good day to write

Chapters of doom

My good friend Monika came back with feedback on chapter 9 which pointed out some things that looked deliberate but which were total accidents. I took the credit which is what you should do in situations like that.

The sanity edit has been a bit of a slog at times, but it’s necessary; if I can see things to improve, then it’s not done. It’s only when I can read it through without wanting to fix something that it’s actually done, actually a book.

Listening

Thanks to my frequent jaunts over to Penny Farthing in Northcote, I’ve been introduced to some new music: Timber Timbre, whose album Hot Dreams helped jolt some brain cells over the weekend.

And I finally got Groove Music to behave (see prior post). Unfortunately VLC for Windows (the Store version, not the desktop app) kept crashing after playing a song. Bloody thing. Pretty UI but fundamentally useless player. Unfortunately on this high-dpi screen, VLC desktop’s controls are stupidly small and not suited to my pudgy fingers.

Dreams

I found myself thinking about dreams a couple of days ago, particularly in reference to a demonstration of “past life regression” I saw about ten years ago. It’s basically hypnosis — which itself is just a dream state —then the first set of images that comes by is your alleged past life. Which means that every time I dream I’m living a bit of a past life. Odd really because last night I dreamed I was in a massive complex being chased by soldiers or police, and took a breather in a lunch room. After that, Pixel woke me up, at which point I fed him then settled in again for another “past life”. Mine seem to be influenced by whatever I stopped watching on TV when I got tired. I’m looking forward to the Batman Returns, Cowboy Bebop, Lord-of-the-Rings mashup past life.

Nazi Scum fuck off

It was the first big yelling match of 2019 this weekend. About a hundred “concerned citizens” gathered in St. Kilda to decry the African Gangs that are allegedly marauding across the state. I wonder where they were when the gangland wars were going on in the early 00’s, or even when I was a kid when the 3174 gangs were making life miserable for everyone in Dandenong?

It’s telling that the protest was arranged by a confirmed racist — Blair Cottrell— and some of the group were throwing Nazi salutes.

The happy part of this social equation is threefold: first, the angry men were resoundingly outnumbered by opposing protesters (although I’m just as concerned about the extreme left as the right; when you become obsessed with the “enemy” you become the enemy). They were condemned by both sides of politics and everyone else with a voice. There’s awareness and clarity: Racists and Nazis are bad. My grandfather, Scotland Granddad fought them — not sure where and he’s gone now; I only met him once — as did a great many other pensioners. They saw what hate is. And we saw it over the weekend, big men shouting racist slogans and Nazi saluting whomever was looking like it was something to be proud of.

My take is these are scared little boys — the majority appear to be men — who lack the awareness that change is normal, that the Nazis were fought by the majority of the rest of the world, and that at no time in history has being nasty to people ever been a viable long-term strategy. Eventually you will be stopped. People who thrown Nazi salutes are just — to use a nasty phrase — asking for it.

The concern is always that there’s someone with these opinions waiting in the wings, taking note of all the idiot things the shouty ones are doing, and resolving to do the opposite. There’s a few Federal politicians that seem to be if not openly racist, then certainly leaning that way. The obvious of course is Fraser Anning, member for some backwater of Queensland who made a point of turning up to decry the enemy. He’s the one who brought up “The Final Solution” in his maiden speech last year, hardly a subtle nod to the Nazis. But he’s not one to worry about; he’s too open, too obvious. Nor is Peter Dutton and his authoritarian spite for example. Though we definitely got lucky when he got rolled as Prime Minister, even if we ended up with Scott Morrison, he of the Aussie slang trying to connect to the common man. Pity about the women of course. And the fact that Julie Bishop should be PM right now.

Thankfully though, the Muslim hater that’s kept putting up stickers around Northcote Station seems to have stopped. They were handwritten opinions about the religion and those who worship; just nasty generalizing bile. Quite happy that I’m not the only one who was ripping them down.