Nearing the Pointy End

August 30, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | AUSTRALIANIA, LIFE |

Glenelg v West Adelaide at Richmond Oval, Friday night, 27 August 2021 A lovely evening but a pretty modest crowd at “Hisense Stadium” saw a spirited contest, with wooden-spoon certs West having a go all evening, falling short to superior skill and attacking method. West fans might be forgiven for staying home and watching the AFL rather than rolling-up, given we are nearly at the end of the season for half the teams, but the home team showed a bit, including snaring the last 3 goals of the game. The Tigers won every quarter though and at the final siren…

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For Whom the Bell Rings

August 22, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Classical Music, LIFE, MUSIC, Opera, OPERA |

August 2021: The Varnished Culture is gutted to learn that the Brisbane Ring Cycle set for October and November has been cancelled for the Second Time.  Due to the damn faux-plague. Opera Australia’s statement of 19/8/2021 followed its message to ticket holders the previous Tuesday: We’re sad to announce that all upcoming performances of the Ring Cycle and Aida in Brisbane have been postponed due to COVID travel restrictions.  This is hugely disappointing news, but we are committed to re-scheduling these spectacular productions so that the seven years of planning that has already gone into this project won’t go to waste….

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Springtime Limbering-Up

August 16, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | AUSTRALIANIA, LIFE |

[Glenelg v Central Districts at Glenelg Oval, 14 August 2021] Your correspondent had been pressed into service as deputy Door Bitch for the Past Players and Officials function for the last home game of the season (see main image) but there was still time to enjoy the game on a beautiful Saturday afternoon, the weather a presage of Spring.  With the minor premiership wrapped up, it was time to keep the streak going and celebrate Brad Agnew’s 150th league game in style, which we did against the Bulldogs, honest toilers in a re-building phase. 10 goals to 3 in the…

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Moot

“Unsettled: What Climate Science Tells Us, What it Doesn’t, and Why it Matters” By Steven E. Koonin (2021) “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” This book posits facts, hypotheses, and urging which we are not qualified to judge.  It is also full of graphs that gave us acute conjunctivitis.  So what we will do here is attempt a summary of what Mr. Koonin is saying, much of which he says very well, and attempt to explain our reaction to the work, located somewhere on the spectrum between skepticism and a resigned…

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This Thing Has No Heart

July 27, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | ART, Ulalume |

Statue of Lady Diana, Kensington Palace, England, unveiled 1 July, 2021 Move over, Robert Jacobsen: the title of Worst Sculptor in the World now passes to Ian Rank-Broadley, whose repulsive statue of Diana Spencer is scaring people. Stiff, awkward, vapid, completely lustreless, uncomfortably masculine and soapy in texture, the hulking, virtually generic Princess stands, surrounded by three kiddies, one lurking behind her recalling the artful dodger. She is wearing something from a discount couturière and has the casual indifference of smooth bronze. It is kitsch enough to be by Jeff Koons. Great sculpture entails inserting heart into stone or metal:…

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