I’m a financial supporter of various art forms. I love the theatre, cinema, live music, art exhibitions, drawing. So I’ve been surprised that, during this chaotic covi period, what we have heard from traditional Arts organisations and people is pleas for financial assistance. Arts are very vulnerable and deserve support, because they nurture and challenge society. They appear not to have received their ‘fair’ share of support. Here’s why.Read More »
Photos: How the World Has Changed
I used to love taking photos. My house is covered with pictures I took that people admire. But digital cameras and now smart phones have changed all that. I’ve upgraded to an iPhone 7 with its ‘great’ camera and abandoned my digital SLR, but still, I no longer love the pictures I take. Anyone can be a great photographer…and the value of photography and photos has plummeted. Can photos recover? What should I do?Read More »
THE PORT OF MELBOURNE: WHEN IS A ‘SALE’ NOT A SALE…AND DOES IT MATTER?
The saga of the ‘sale’ or not of the Port of Melbourne has been going on now for some years. Valued at around $5-10bn, the transaction will make a difference to the state government’s cash flow when the transaction goes through, as now seems likely. But much of the argument misses a key point – the ‘sale’ will not actually be a sale at all! And it does matter. Let me explain.Read More »
Reflections on the Wonders of Adelaide Writers Week
Why would I, an ex-accountant and ex-economist – a numbers man – want to sit for days listening to a variety of people talking about the books they have written? And why would that be one of my most valued events of my year?Read More »
FOOD NARCISSISM: WE’VE LOST THE PLOT
Looked through the guide to good restaurants the other day to find a place with food I’d like to eat. Randomly, I found gremolata-speckled turnip ribbons, fried caciocavallo and pickled eggplant, tarragon-flecked Parisienne gnocchi with salt-baked celeriac, sweet buns with tom crab and Thai basil mayo and much more! In fact there was hardly any dish that was recognisable. It’s clear that, to succeed, restaurants have to offer outlandish ‘innovative’ food that, frankly, you really never wanted to eat! And you’ll pay $35 or more for a main, which probably needs sides to be added to constitute a balanced dish. What’s happening, people? Our society has lost the plot on food.Read More »
THE ADVENTURES OF DICK (NO. 1): DICK STOPS WORK
My friend Dick decided to stop work last week. He simply decided to stop producing for his owner, even though his owner desperately needed him. Dick has been less effective as he has grown older. His best days are past. But he is the only worker of his type which his owner employs and it is very difficult to replace him. He has specific skills that every human organisation needs. His main job is to get rid of the light rubbish for the organisation, as required, 24/7. He also provides pleasure to the organisation and is capable of producing a new product on rare occasions, but this skill declines rapidly over time and Dick hasn’t been able to do that for many years. Nevertheless, his owner greatly values the other two skills he has.Read More »
HAPPINESS IS (MOSTLY) FREE!
It’s Christmas time and most people are out shopping hard, spending furiously, hoping to bring happiness to others. The more they spend, they greater the happiness they hope to bring. But – really – happiness is mostly free! So many wonderful experiences cost nothing, but create great value, bring great happiness. Happiness is (mostly) free! Let me explain.Read More »
VOLUNTEERING: EXTRA WORK IS GOOD FOR YOU!
‘I’m too busy’, most people say.
Yet the saying goes, ‘If you want something done, give it to a busy person. It is generally busy people who say ‘Yes’ when you ask for help, or when new ideas, or groups or tasks come along, needing resources to make them happen.
Why do people volunteer?
Why would a busy person – indeed, any person – ‘volunteer’ to undertake an unpaid task, such as president, secretary, treasurer or other responsible position of a sports club, neighbourhood association, culture or interest group?
CHOIR: MORE LIKE A COMMUNITY
One of the new activities in my life recently has been joining a choir. I don’t read music, I’ve never sung in a choir before and I’m not religious. So why am I singing in a gospel choir??? And loving it!!
WHAT VALUE DO MEN HAVE FOR WOMEN?
Recently I went on a travelling and walking trip in the country with 4 very close women friends for 6 days. We all got on very well and it was a great trip. However, I realised after a couple of days how unusual it was for me to be the only one of my gender in a group. What I noticed was how well they got on together in conversation without me being involved, even though they were from three different countries and were not friends themselves (they were all my friends).