Monday, November 23, 2009

+ 99 Reasons

I love the name of these shoes, even though I don't think I could come up with more than 5 reasons to love them. These Jeffrey Campbell hidden platform wedge booties (also known as the "99 Zip Wedge") are inspired by the Acne Atacoma wedge ankle boot, but the zip and the loveliness of the toe is enough to make it droolworthy on its own.

I ran out in my boxers in the midday 40 degree heat just to prance around in the grass.

+ Wellington - part 2

It is rare for me to see sunrise over water so I jumped out of bed to take a photo. Then I jumped back in and slept for another 2 hours. The best kind of snoozing.

Producer conferences aren't normally noteworthy, and especially not photogenic but one of the guests this year was Matthew Weiner, creator of Mad Men who opened and closed the conference with 2 excellent sessions (though I can't say the same for the chair of either session... many dumb questions were asked, and too much butting-in) and by the time I finally got to say hi to him as we were boarding the flight back to Sydney, I was pretty much the dude's biggest fan. He is very much a top bloke, super nice and perfectly amiable.

That night, we attended the Big Dinner where awards for producers of the year and self-congratulatory pats on backs are given. It was held this time in the Beehive, one of the buildings on parliamentary grounds. I took this from a moving bus, which ferried delegates over. It's probably better looking than the photo would suggest.

Inside though, the hall where we had pre-dinner drinks was quite stately. My colleague Kate and I were positioned well for first serves of the finger food.

The night was okay, perhaps not nearly as memorable as previous SPADA dinners but still pleasantly enjoyable.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

+ Wellington - part 1

I was in New Zealand for the annual SPADA Conference last week and enjoyed my brief return to the windy city (Chicago's claim has got nothin' on Wgtn so 3 days is more than enough time to remember fondly/not-so-fondly the hair-whipping town)

It's supposed to be summer, but at 15°C (and feeling like 10), it looked like this a lot of the time.

Even with the greyness up top though, the harbour did take take on a lovely green hue at times (ok, I did exaggerate it a wee bit with the colourcross).

Crossing the road to the foreshore.

All along its hills, the city is dotted with wooden terraces, not unlike San Francisco, except maybe with a more quaint, seashack town vibe. This is looking up Dixon St.

On the other side of the Dixon St, heading into the Cuba quarter.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

+ Malaya restaurant

Shortly after leaving the Newtown Festival, I spent some quality retail-therapy time on King St and at Munky Bizness picked myself up a bargain eggplant-coloured chiffon babydoll dress for an awards dinner in Wellington I was going to later in the week, and a cute vintage dress from Cream on King.

And went on to meet Ems and Chris for cocktails at Cargo Bar (oh that place has seen some better days. And its clientele is not all that different from the Newtown fest crowd), and a terrific meal of Malaysian-Chinese at Malaya, both establishments on King St Wharf, which faces Darling Harbour.

Looking out to the bay, shame the weather was a bit grey.

Turns out we ate quite a bit. Roti Canai and Curry Chicken Sauce, Otak Otak (white fish fillet minced with chilli and spices, wrapped in banana leaf and barbequed), Sayor Otak (silken tofu topped with a blend of eggplant, mushroom, tomato, lemongrass and chilli paste, wrapped in a banana leaf - especially tasty), Chilli Beansprouts and snowpeas, and one of their signature dishes, Szechuan Eggplant. Well worth a visit.

+ Newtown Festival

I always have high hopes for the Newtown Festival year, call it selective memory perhaps, but once I arrive, I'm instantly reminded of many things I hate, all at the one time. Obnoxious hipsters, hippies, bogans, mogans and what have you, all crammed into a forced enclosure, listening to terribad funk-ska-metal-grooves and the stench of human bodies, some not yet familiar with Rexona, Lynx and other fine products.

You can always count on an inner city hippy to dance barefoot on wet grass in the rain, out of time, to above-mentioned terribad music.

Still, I showed my face as I usually do in support of 2SER and the stall we have every year. And I admit, I do enjoy certain festival foods like the gummy lollies, the infamous Turkish gozleme (why are they never sold outside of a festival?) and my choice this year, seafood paella.

It was pretty tasty, the saltiness lending itself as a perfect excuse to have some home made lemonade. I was fascinated by the paella stall with its 4 large pans on the go, all at varying cooking stages. Can't deny how it made me smack my lips in anticipation.

+ corsetry

I bought these corset wedges online and initially thought I had bought half a size too big, but after wearing them for most of the 4 days in Wellington which included a walking tour of the harbour's cobblestone walkway, the comfort level was rather satisfactory.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

+ Santa Monica

Ever since he got his fancy camera, I've been on Benj's back to take a sunset photo for me so I can relive it in all its amber glory. Finally... the first of many (I hope). This was taken near the Pier.

The sunsets in Santa Monica are kinda spectacular. Especially when you're at a meeting in a hotel suite during AFM and all you can think of is the incredible orange sky in front of you. Distracting!

This is me last year "working" on the pool deck of Loews Hotel right after the last AFM meeting of the day. Why can't all my work be like this?

Saturday, October 31, 2009

+ the Western Distributor

Even though the traffic is usually the worst around this area, the approach to the Harbour Bridge on the south side is still my favourite part of the daily commute. Glimpes of the harbour to the east, or the bays on the west, between the tall buildings make the jerky-moving drive just a little more tolerable. Nothing beats it on a nice sunny morning, but I don't mind a little cloud action now and then either.

And I still like going over the Coathanger (well, all bridges really) even if I do vow angrily every morning to write a letter to the RTA for their mismanagement of its traffic flow (just like Hans Brix in Team America).

From under the Harbour Bridge.

+ my second home

I really like the new 2SER space, which is just as well since I spend so many hours here after the show goes to air, painstakingly recreating it for the podcast (oh it's a long story). Of the three, the ground floor is where it feels the roomiest, with the new broadcast studios and the big open lobby area.

The windows of Studio 1.

Late night editing of a Tape Relay replay. This show featured Bibio as remixed by Bibio, new Kelpe, Apse, Hudson Mohawke, a Plaid rarity, Efterklang live with the Danish National Chamber Orchestra and Glass Candy paying homage to the Geto Boys. Even by my count, it was a pretty rad show.

And you can even download the aforementioned replay here. The rest of them, and their respective playlists can be found on the official Tape Relay page here.

+ tasty shoes

gosh I love my new play things. They arrived during the week - a pair of Miu Miu suede sandals that I scored on eBay - and this was pretty much the first chance I got to try them on. They're rather ridiculously high but the chunky heel makes it a lot more wearable pretty.

I debuted them over at Em's house for a super tasty midweek feast of vegan Spanish food that I could not stop eating (I had thirds, yes.) She made a wonderful paella, fennel and orange salad and a chickpea and spinach dish for which Em was kind enough to put the recipe on her blog. yum!

Monday, October 26, 2009

+ spring rain

It seems like we've had more rain this spring so far than we did all winter. I slept rather poorly last night because the wind was howling and the rain was falling so loudly on the corrugated iron balcony roof.

It was pretty dreary on the southern approach to the Harbour Bridge.

But though the sleep was poor, the waking up was kinda gleeful actually. Because only yesterday had I remembered the Hello Kitty gumboots that I bought for dirty cheap way back at the start of the year and up until then, had tucked out of sight, out of mind. So I was delighted to be able to pull them on and do a little dance in front of the camera (new quadcam lomo-alike app on the phone!)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

+ Black Star Pastry

In the last couple weeks, motivated by not having a working shower in my house, Ems and I have taken to early morning gym dates before we go to work. By the time I'm done and back at the car, Black Star Pastry is open and ready for business. I can't go in every day because I'd be too tempted by the ridiculously good lookin' sweets on offer (thereby negating any good work done on the cardio machines), but it's great for an end-of-week coffee treat. The flat whites are pretty good, though I do have to say the service can sometimes range from averagely-indifferent to attitudally-bad.

Their custard tarts look twice as big as anything I've ever seen, and those Turkish fig, quince and orange cakes looks heavenly, even if the flavours aren't my thing.

This is the one I really want to try though. Strawberry, watermelon (layered in the middle by cream?) and rose... drools!

My first visit in to Black Star was marked by a slice of this most incredible spinach, mushroom and pinenut pithivier (puff pastry pie). The spinach was so buttery and salty good and the mushrooms earthy.

And how about the bread and butter puddings?

Black Star Pastry, 277 Australia St Newtown NSW 2042. Open Tue-Sun 7am-5pm

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

+ welcome Benj

This picture comes from Benj (with a little "collaborative tweaking" from me), who will be my guest contributor and co-conspirator. Also, it is he who came up with this blog's neat little name and is also at present, the only one that actually lives 12 blocks from the beach.

The summer warmth has just about gone from the Southern Californian spread... I mean it's even rained in the last week! But the sun did smile for some Albuquerquean visitors of Benj's who were treated to a visit to Huntington Beach.

Do you like how warm and inviting my fauxlaroid looks? Not to take anything away from Benj's lovely original shot but I did that just to drive the point home, because aside from when I visited Santa Monica for the first time aged 9, and rather gingerly dipped my toes in, I have never swum in the North American Pacific Ocean because it is seems so freaking COLD. Always blowy, glassy-looking and not at all inviting, it'll be a long time yet before I get to have a true summer swim in SoCal. In the meantime, enjoy this scene of young Cole braving the icy waters.

Monday, October 12, 2009

+ go Angels!

In honour of the LA Angels making the final round of the ALCS playoffs and starting their best-of-7 with the Yankees this Friday for a spot in the World Series, let us all celebrate victoriously for the mighty reds.

You better believe in the power of the rally monkey!