Author: James O'Brien

Forty-something from Sydney, Australia. My passions include: radio (my job), travel, genealogy, music, art, theatre, food, wine, and learning Swedish.

The Eternity Man

For a week or two, I’ve been in search of a video to use at the “Tribute to Colin”, to be held in a couple of weeks on what would have been his birthday. Colin was one of those featured in a copy of a 1994 documentary about Arthur Stace, the man who wrote “Eternity” on Sydney foothpaths for many years.

The documentary originally screened at the Sydney Film Festival in 1994, and later on the ABC. Colin featured in the documentary as the actor who sang the song about Arthur Stace in a SUDS production (Sydney University). With many thanks to the film-maker, Susan Mackinnon, I’ve obtained a copy of the documentary, and I’m sure this segment will make a wonderful contribution to the tribute.

Not Completely Frozen

It’s about half way through winter, I think? And so I thought I’d reflect on my personal challenge this year: not to use artificial heating.

There are two levels to this. First, the idea that I can keep my electricity bill down by simply putting on an extra layer or two. Second, the idea that I might be able to do something small to “save the planet”. The second one is probably the greater for me, as living alone, my electricity bills, generally, aren’t too expensive.

And you know what? So far it’s going pretty well. Tracky dax, a pull over, and a doona over my knees in preference to sitting around in shorts, a t-shirt, and with the heater isn’t that hard to do. I’m lucky as my apartment is protected by those above and those below, and so it’s never usually too hot or too cold.

But even so, an extra layer of clothing is absolutely fine in the context of mild Sydney winters. Hey, I’ve walked on a glacier in Iceland. I’ve been in Sweden where it’s been minus 23 and I’ve been warned not to go out at night, in case my eyelashes freeze together. I’ve also been in Sweden in sub-zero conditions where the bottom of my jeans became damp with snow, and I’ve needed to go back to my apartment to warm up slowly to avoid frost-bite. In contrast, overnight temperatures of 5-10 degrees are pretty mild, and so putting on an extra layer is not that hard.

Vem Vet Mest, July 15 2014 from SVT

Swedish TV Gem

I spotted this on the Swedish TV Quiz Show, “Vem vet mest?” which goes out nightly at 7pm (and is repeated throughout the day) on Swedish national TV.

It’s a show I watch to practice my Swedish language skills, as it includes Swedish text to support the voice.

I don’t think I need to translate, except to say somehow, I don’t think this question would have made the cut on Australian TV.

In case you’re wondering, she didn’t know it was “Die Hard”.