Tuesday, December 28, 2010


10 December 2010 - 6 February 2011

Throughout his artistic career, Sidney Nolan returned intermittently to the theme of Gallipoli. This series, begun in 1956 is a fitting tribute to his brother’s premature death within the broader context of Australia’s military history.
A Travelling Exhibition from the Australian War Memorial

2010: A Year in Pictures from NASAJPL

An early start to the wet season

On Christmas Day a small cyclone named Tasha kicked off what is looking like one of the best wet seasons we have had in years.
Monsoonal skies over Cairns

Remnants of a rock concert
Barron River
Barron Falls near Kuranda

(the whistling sound is coming from the cicadas)

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Rap News 5 (featuring Julian Assange)

From The Juice Media:
Who let the Logs out!? Wikileaks drops 400,000 classified documents shedding new light on the Iraq war—the biggest leak of classified military documents in history—sending shockwaves across the Fourth Estate. Rap News marks the occasion by inviting into the studio the former US Secretary of Offense, Donald Rumsfeld. But what starts out as a conventional Rap News interview soon descends into mayhem as the live feed is hijacked by News World Order, eager to spin the record like a disc jockey on crack. Enter Bill O'Really, the champion of Fair & Balanced journalism, dragging us screaming into the No Spine Zone. Only divine intervention can save us now, from a fate worse than death. But beware of imitators; not all is what it seems to be! Join us for a rollercoaster episode of Rap News, featuring a very very special guest appearance.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Georgia Lee

From YouTube: "Australian Indigenous (aboriginal) cabaret singer and occasional actress Georgia Lee - otherwise known as Dulcie Pitt - was a habitué of the bohemian world of artists like Donald Friend and Russell Drysdale and the jazz and blues nightclub circuit in Sydney and Melbourne during the 1950s.

The girl from Cairns (northern Queensland) eventually sang with the bandleader Geraldo and his light orchestra in London in BBC radio broadcasts. A nervous collapse and homesickness put an end to her international career but she continued to sing in Australia and was even belatedly crowned the Queen of Jazz. In 1962, she released what's believed to be the first full-length studio album to be recorded by an Indigenous artist, Georgia Lee Sings the Blues Down Under. She was also one of the first artists to be recorded in full stereo."

This video contains three excerpts from the album :

1. 'Nobody Knows the Trouble I have Seen'
2. 'Born To be Blue'
3. 'Down Under Blues'

Listen here for a special on Georgia Lee from Newsline Radio titled "Born To Be Blue"
More music videos can be found here: http://www.abc.net.au/rn/awaye/stories/2010/2846318.htm

Friday, December 17, 2010

Reuters Best of the Year Photos

Reuters photographers produce over half a million images every year. Some pictures define an event, others capture a moment revealing an aspect of the human condition. In the series below, Reuters photographers offer unique insight into some of their best pictures of the year

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Hillbillies are never too far away

As someone who avoids local commercial radio, particularly the tripe that is called AM radio talkback I missed out on the recent goings on with our own ageing 'shock jock' (well he thinks he is).

Fortunately some local bloggers are on to him and his ongoing personal battle to oust the current Mayor.
This is from hillbillywatch.com
A stall owner at the Cairns Night Markets is complaining about the establishment of cheap rent vendors on the Cairns Esplanade on Saturdays (in the daytime), and now a few days a year to welcome the cruise ship customers.

It gets better. Check the the fancy writin' on the letter in the next post on Hillbilly watch. Even if it is fake, it would have taken some effort to make such a mess of the English language!

Monday, December 6, 2010

....and she can play piano!

Got an idea who this is?

Clean The Fan

Have you ever tried to replace a laptop fan? Then you'll appreciate this instructional music video by Jayme Gutierrez.

Sack the editor? What a good idea

The latest promotion from one of the 'classy high quality flagship newspapers' from the Murdoch Deathstar empire:

So that's why the Murdoch owned Cairns Post - a classy high quality regional newspaper (only joking) follows the same recipe, except at the moment, as well as the constant and unwarranted Mayor (Val Schier) bashing, its current mission is to tell us hillbillies how to turn the CBD into a tourist Disneyland. When they tire of that the cat eating pythons and life threatening crocodile stories are never too far away.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Tourette's Karaoke

Web Page

About Guy:

"I am married and have 3 kids. I read Tarot cards, do astrology, love fringe science, write poems/ditties/short songs, smoke, drink, etc.

I enjoy reading ... oh yes, I have Tourette's Syndrome.

The full blown kind. You know, swearing and aggressive jerking and all that.

Oh yeah, I also have Asperger's Syndrome.

I was diagnosed at age 31. I have tics that are triggered by sensory input or any changes to my routine and tics that are cycle based.

I deal with it in a number of ways. One of them is Karaoke."

Checkout this person's amazing blog and see life from his side.

Mr Deity (Season 3)

Lucy tries to tell Mr. Deity that Illusionists aren't magical beings.

ECOS Magazine - Towards A Sustainable Future

Townsville.....what's happening in Cairns?

Friday, November 19, 2010

Cairns Cultural Precinct

The Cairns Cultural Precinct project will breathe new life and vitality into the wharf precinct and CBD and act as a catalyst for a new round of investment in the city. Encompassing a Performing Arts Centre, Museum and Public Plaza, the Precinct delivers cultural, entertainment and recreational facilities that will attract a broad range of visitors, and a diversity and vibrancy that will support commercial outlets.

Write today to the Gang of 6 Cairns Councillors on our dysfunctional Cairns Regional Council trying to delay and stop the Cultural Precinct. Tell them you support the project.

Paul Gregory p.gregory@cairns.qld.gov.au
Nancy Lanskey n.lanskey@cairns.qld.gov.au
Alan Blake a.blake@cairns.qld.gov.au
Linda Cooper l.cooper@cairns.qld.gov.au
Margaret Cochrane m.cochrane@cairns.qld.gov.au
Sno Bonneau s.bonneau@cairns.qld.gov.au

Friday, November 12, 2010

From the 1940s to now

It is appropriate considering Remembrance Day was this week to post these amazing mashups by Sergey Larenkov showing European and Russian landmarks as they stand today with overlays of images of the same locations during World War Two.

We can only imagine.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

In Honor of the Memory of Carl Sagan

This week marks the 76th anniversary of his birth (November 9, 1934) .Carl Sagan was a Professor of Astronomy and Space Science and Director of the Laboratory for Planetary Studies at Cornell University. He served as an advisor and consultant to NASA, and played a major role in the establishment of SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence). He was a Pulitzer Prize winning author and most familiar to the public through his COSMOS series on PBS. In addition to numerous awards, recognitions and honorary degrees for his outstanding contributions, he is acknowledged as one of the most effective public faces of astronomy and space science throughout the world. Sagan died in December 1996.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Graduation night from Djarragun College

From Ludo Kuipers, a teacher at Djarragun, "Boys from Djarragun College, a school for indigenous students in Gordonvale near Cairns, Far North Queensland, perform dances from Murray Island in the Torres Strait during a performance in the hall of nearby Trinity College during the student graduation ceremonies. Among others the do the fast "Silent dance", only accompanied by drumming; girls in school blazers jump on the stage to sprinkle powder on the dancers as a sign of appreciation; one of them actually slips on a dancing stick and falls off the stage!"

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Blast from the Past

I'm turning into a bit of a local history buff and have been trolling through online archived news items about this part of the world (where would we be without the intertubes?).

I recently made a trip out to Chillagoe with a load of old typewriters which hopefully will soon be on display out there (another story).

On the way to Chillagoe you pass through the deserted 'town' of Lappa Junction

This is how it looks today:

The Lappa Junction Station

The old Lappa Pub (link to local ABC)

This is what it was like in 1901:

The Queenslander (Brisbane 1886-1939)

Saturday August 3 1901


The "Cairns Argus" of 16th Julysays:—In the course of an interview whicha representative of this journal had on

Saturday evening with Mr. A. Overend, of the firm of Messrs. Willcocks and Overend, contractors for the construction of theLappa Junction —Mount Garnet Railway, he learnt that good progress is being made with the work. About 250 men are employed on the line, this number not including a good many who are engaged in getting timber for the railway or as teamsters. The clearing gangs have got past the ten mile from Lappa Junction with their work, which will go on uninterruptedly until the whole line—thirty-three miles in length—is cleared. The earth-works are in hand for the first six miles of the line, and here about fifty horses and drays are employed, besides the men. There will be a good many cuttings on this part of the line, and the men areabout halfway through one big cutting near Lappa Junction. The main camp is now at this place, but will later on be re-moved to the ten-mile, which will form theterminus of the first section. Messrs.Willcocks and Overend have bought the saw-mills at the 74-Mlle on the Chlllagoe line from the Chillagoe Railway and Mines, and will start cutting sleepers there immediately. It is intended to utilise the saw-mills where they are now situated while the contractors are getting timber for a mill on their own line. It is hoped that the line will be finished in twelve months, or three months ahead of contract time. The contractors are pushing on with it as quickly as possible. Men are voluntarily coming up from the South by nearly every boat to work on it, and, in addition, all the local men who apply and are suitable for the work are put on. When the construction is more advanced, a good many more men than at present will be engaged—in fact, something like a thousand could be employed. Mr. Overend left Cairns for a visit to the South by Saturday night's boat. His partner, Mr. Willcocks, is remaining at the seat of operations to direct matters.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Saturday, October 23, 2010

TEDx in Canberra This Weekend


Background info:
About TEDx, x = independently organised event

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.

Richard Wiseman's Friday puzzle -an easi(er) one

Can you change 100 into CAT by moving just two matchsticks?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

If you are into satellite watching

Tonight, being an exceptionally clear night thanks to the winter revisit we are having at the moment, we were able to watch the passing of a satellite and the International Space Station on cue thanks to this really cool website. It gives the exact time for appearance and how long it can be seen for. Just set it for your own location and sit back and watch the white lights traverse the night sky. Lots of fun after a few drinks.
The ISS is the most brightest object in the sky (apart from the Moon and Sun obviously) so you can't miss it.
The satellite we saw tonight was this one.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Finally a photo of a Sunbird feeding its young

It may seem silly but we have been waiting for days for an opportunity to get a picture of a sunbird feeding its young on our verandah. As soon as you put the camera down the female would arrive with another mouthful of food. She doesn't hang around for long when she feeds so she can deter the resident butcher birds from finding the nest. They never seem to be too far away unfortunately.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Australian Wildlife Book Launch - Stella Martin

Please come and celebrate with me when Mayor Val Schier officially launches my book:

Australian Wildlife

When: Friday 15th October

Time: 6.30pm

Where: Cominos House, Greenslopes Street

Copies will be on sale at the event ($29.95); for each copy sold I will donate $5 to the Australian Bush Heritage Fund.

I hope to see you there.

Stella Martin

Friday, October 1, 2010

Too much spare time!

I know there are more important things I should be doing other than stuffing around on the intertubes, but this is quite cool.
It even has a name: The Thatcher Effect

This is a (slightly) better explanation:

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Another beautiful day in Paradise.

Sometimes you take where you live for granted, so this morning I decided to take a walk along the Cairns Esplanade with a camera.

The Lagoon was being cleaned, so there was hardly a soul around.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A suggestion for the next Cairns Ukulele Festival headline act?

Reckon they would be a crowd drawer for sure if they were to appear at the next Cairns Ukulele Festival.
From The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain.

I love the grunge metal Uke. Now you're talking.
This is what ukuleles were made for!

When Costa came to the Cairns Flexible Learning Centre

This was featured on Costa’s Garden Odyssey (between ads) on SBS earlier this year.
The FLC is located just behind the Cairns School of Distance Education and next door to Trinity Bay High School.
More info HERE.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Media Conduct during the Federal Election

John Menadue from the Centre for Policy Development has been calling for a parliamentary inquiry into the conduct of the media during the Federal election. If you would like to add your voice to his call for an inquiry, you may contact him here:

John Menadue
Centre for Policy Development
PO Box K3
Haymarket NSW 1240

You can listen to his interview on ABC Radio HERE

It is interesting also to make comparisons with the New Zealand Media. This Radio New Zealand National session about the interrelationship between the blogosphere and the mainstream media is worth a listen.

It is from the Radio New Zealand Media Watch program (not to be confused with the not-our-ABC's Media Watch).

Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Known Universe

This video simulation takes you further and further away from Earth as you see the Sun come into focus, the orbits of the solar system shrink smaller and disappear, the constellations Sagittarius and Scorpio stretch and distort, and, as the Milky Way receeds, the spidery structure of millions of other galaxies come into view. Then, you reach the limit of the observable universe, the afterglow of the Big Bang. This light has taken more than 13.7 billion years to reach our planet. Finally it returns the viewer back to Earth, to two lakes that are nestled between Mount Kailash and Mount Gurla Mandhata in the Himalayas. This link is in HD so it may pay to pause and allow the data to download first. Don't forget to expand the video to fullscreen.

The structure of The Known Universe is based on precise, scientifically-accurate observations and research. The Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History maintains the Digital Universe Atlas, believed to be the world’s most complete four-dimensional map of the universe.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Ed Kuepper

Sick of politics in the news, it's almost the weekend. I'm turning up the sound on the headphones and listening to some classic EK.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Australian Iconic Sounds 2010

Fourteen iconic Australian sounds have been immortalised alongside the Vegemite jingle, Waltzing Matilda and Aeroplane Jelly after being inducted into the National Film and Sound Archive's (NFSA) Sounds of Australia. Check out the site here.

Post Election - War Birds Air Show Mareeba

Got sick of the Election 'fallout' so we went up to the Warbirds Airshow at Mareeba on Sunday. Had a great time. It makes you realise how much of a historical link this area had with WWII and the thousands of military personnel that were based in this part of the world.
I'm no aircraft specialist but the DC3 would have to be one of the most amazing aircraft ever made. Built before WWII they were probably the forerunner of the modern airliner and still fly commercially in some parts of the world. I was fortunate to fly (on possibly this DC3 ) with Bush Pilots Airways back in the Eighties to Bamaga.

This one is still being rebuilt but they were still able to kick the engines over to stir the memories.
There were lots of other attractions but the scene stealers were the RAAF Roulettes.

Say no more!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Where's Warren?? Overseas!

Looks like Warren has a good chance to get another term of travel junkets and nose in the trough topped up pollies superannuation after this weekend. Not that it will do Leichhardt any good if Labor gets re-elected and the odds are it will. Then again he didn't really do much more when he was a HoWARd lackey last time - he supported Workchoices, the Tampa fiasco, SIEV X tragedy, Iraq, the treasonable AWB bribes.....never spoke out against any of them.

Coalition broadband: a wireless tower in every street

Under the Coalition Broadband plan our skyline will need to undergo some major modifications to allow for the myriad towers required for the limited wireless broadband technology. Here are some tasteful examples of how they might look.

This one should fit in with our tropical environment.

These would have to be some of Tone's favourites.

More Pics of cleverly disguised Talking Towers HERE

This story from Crikey

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Time Trivia

At exactly 06 minutes and 07 seconds after 5 o'clock on August 9th of this year it will be 05:06:07 08/09/10 ~ This will not happen again until the year 3010...

Monday, August 9, 2010

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Weekend Music (and comedy)

Another song that sticks in your head all weekend. From Mumford and Sons

Oh, and some very deep and meaningful Futurama
FuturamaThursdays 10pm / 9c
e-Waste Delivery
Futurama New EpisodesRoast of David HasselhoffBig Lake

Friday, July 30, 2010

Conclusive evidence we have the best sexist Bogans in Queensland

This from today's online local (Murdoch Monopoly owned) newspaper:

I don't want to see cairns get its silly val precinct, it seems the more a community council en devours to spend on so called keeping up and creating jobs ,it just somehow seems to inflate our rates , i don't care if cairns becomes a sleepy fishing village again, it survived quite OK from 1770 till 2008, then all of a sudden a women takes the reins and out come all the hair brained dopey ideas our rates and cost of living go threw the roof, do us a favor val crawl back under the rock from whence you came.

Posted by: Don of cairns 5:55am today

NB: I kept tha speling as it wuz writed.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Imported Seafood from Vietnam

Don't want to pay higher prices for Australian seafood? Don't mind people and the environment being exploited so you can pay less? Then check this out. I hear their fish are yummy!

Friday, July 23, 2010

First Dog on the Moon

As an avid First Dog fan and the fact that this cartoon hasn't been firewalled by Crikey, here is the latest drinking game combining the Federal Election Debate (known as the FED) and the Grand Final Of Master Chef (GFOMC). Click on the dog.
*hint* Right click and save to get a clearer pic.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Goodbye Cairns Community Radio

Picture borrowed from Cairns Blog
Almost seamless classic digital modification by Pteropus Designs Inc.

Read the latest from the ACMA about the bunkered in management of a predominantly taxpayer funded community radio station in Cairns that no one apparently bothers to listen to and only selected 'friends' are allowed to join!
A lot of years of hard work by so many volunteers wasted. What more can be said.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Johnny Clegg with Nelson Mandela

No election crap here but just a thought about what a committed politician who made huge sacrifices for their country looks like. Anyone like that here in Australia?

Johnny Clegg with Nelson Mandela.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Mount Garnet

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to spend a few days in Mt Garnet, a town I usually fly through heading out to the Gulf. It actually has a very interesting history. After a wander through the intertubes, here is a potted history:

Steam train, possibly for carrying copper to and from the copper mines at Mount Garnet, going across the Return Creek Railway Bridge, around 1906.

Image sourced from Picture Queensland, State Library of Queensland
This image is free of copyright restrictions

Mount Garnet
Sleepy town on the southern edge of the Atherton Tablelands.
Located approximately 165 km, 185 km or 205 km (dependingding which way you want to get there) from Cairns, As I mentioned, Mount Garnet is one of those towns that you want to keep driving through..

In fact the miners who first settled the town hardly slowed down as they moved through the area. It is said that when, in about 1904, a rumour went round that the original copper mine was going to close down half the men didn't wait for their notice to quit. They simply packed up their few belongings and were gone by lunchtime.

Mount Garnet was first settled around the turn of the century when copper was found in the area. Within months the Mount Garnet Freehold Copper and Silver Mining Company Ltd had built a smelter and was busy hiring men to dig the valuable mineral out of the ground.

At first the smelted copper was shipped out by camel (there are some interesting photographs of the camel teams on the walls of the Norwestgate Cafe) but by 1902 a branch line connecting the town to the line from Mareeba to Chillagoe had been built and the copper was being railed out to Lappa Junction and then to the coast.

At the time it looked as though the town had a future. Then, quite suddenly, the price of copper dropped and the company, eager to cut its losses, closed the mine.

A few remnants of the mine are still in evidence. Take the road opposite Norwestgate Motel and follow it south on a dirt road which leads past the old Assay House (which is currently being restored). Little is left but there is enough to show the scale of the operation at the turn of the century.

The town did not die. After 1904 the miners turned their attention to the excavation of tin. Today Mount Garnet has a reputation as a good starting place for gold prospectors and gem collectors.

Wurruma Swamp
Just before entering the town from the north there is a dirt road which heads east to Wurruma Swamp. Although little known, this is one of the wonders of the Mount Garnet area.

Mt Garnet Today
Apart the possibility of further tin mining development in the area, other important social activities still prevail.

Here are some highlights of the Mt Garnet Races, one of the big events on the Mt Garnet calendar.