Saturday, October 3, 2009

Some random

Random blog posts I would write if only [insert excuse here]
  • One about the common motivation behind nearly all of the negative reactions I've seen so far to The Macquarie PEN Anthology of Australian Literature, which have included 'I'm not in it! I'm personally insulted! This book is bad!' and 'I wasn't invited to edit it! I'm personally insulted! This book is bad!' and 'My husband / wife / SO /BFF / offspring isn't in it! I'm personally insulted! This book is bad!' and 'My own genre isn't adequately represented! I'm personally insulted! This book is bad!' and 'It hasn't got enough of the things that I think are really good in it! I'm personally insulted! This book is bad!' Etc. Spot the common element here.
  • One about natural disasters and the reporting of natural disasters, with specific reference to headlines like '2 Australians Missing After Volcano Eruption' when in fact 5,000 Sicilians have also been engulfed by molten lava, a fact that appears somewhere in the fourth paragraph if you're lucky.

Random reasons to be cheerful
  • I've just had a nice drive up to the Adelaide Hills to hang out with my best mate.
  • The book I'm reading for work is quite adequately gripping.
  • There are prawns dipped in leftover guacamole for dinner.

Random whining
  • I'm still not at all sure about this haircut.
  • My back hurts.
  • The deplorably illiterate "sneak peak", which I'm seeing more and more frequently, has just turned up on the website of one of the country's major newspapers. Don't people think about the meaning of the words they write and misspell at all any more? It's a peek, people. (And no, 'sneek' is not acceptable either, in fact that's worse, because it isn't any kind of word at all.) A peak is the pointy bit at the high end of a mountain or a soft-serve cone. A peek is a little baby look.

17 comments:

Anthony said...

"Prawns dipped in leftover guacamole" I'd demote to random whining. But that's just me.

Pavlov's Cat said...

Oh well, I love prawns, and I love the prawn and avocado combination, and when I say 'left over' I mean 'from last night'. And it was a particularly good bitey guacamole full of lime juice that has kept well.

librarygirl said...

Re the natural disasters: yes, I very sharply corrected one of my children yesterday highlighting the number of SAMOANS who had perished,distinct from the Australians.
I hate that sort of reporting.


I don't like prawns at all but the guacamole sounds delicious.

Zarquon said...

So was this a sneak pique?

Anonymous said...

Re natural disasters: Yes, not good at all.

Re the new Anthology: I think it's great. It's impossible to please everyone.

anon ed

Pavlov's Cat said...

Thank you, anon ed. We like it too.

Re natural disasters, I do get why they specify Australians, as there are inevitably people who will be listening to the Australian news who will have friends and relatives in the disaster zone and be anxious for news. I just wish they wouldn't foreground the Australian numbers as though those were the only important ones.

Zarquon -- heh. By the logic of 'sneak peak', that would make it a snique pique.

Librarygirl, the guacamole recipe has avocado, minced onion, minced garlic, chopped fresh coriander, sea salt, lime juice, cumin and a teeny pinch of cayenne. It is quite bossy.

meli said...

My grandma just informed me that she's posted a copy of the anthology to Norway in a package covered with stamps with whales on them. I can't wait!

TimT said...

Wasn't it decided before that a sneak peak was a climax had with a partner on the sly?

TimT said...

Zarquon! Took the words right out of my mouth. Sniquey!

naomi said...

You stole my idea for a blog post about natural disaster reporting! I'm personally insulted!

'cept that I obvs agree with you ... ROTFL at 'sneak pique', very good work. As is the anthology!

My random whine ... ABC seems to be uninterested in maintaining regular digital telly in my area, meaning I had to watch Yellowstone on *gasp* analogue ... and I am full from eating too many blinis with smoked salmon and too much lemon and sour creamcake!

Anonymous said...

Those absent from the PEN anthology are ego-centric. Those reporting the Sicilian volanco are ethno-centric. It's all about moi, sod the rest of the world kind of thinking.

Vivian said...

"One about natural disasters and the reporting of natural disasters, with specific reference to headlines like '2 Australians Missing After Volcano Eruption' when in fact 5,000 Sicilians have also been engulfed by molten lava, a fact that appears somewhere in the fourth paragraph if you're lucky."

Oh get off your high horse. Most people are more likely to feel affinity with those they deem most like themselves- starting with partner and immediate family then moving out to broader affinity groups, like neighbors etc.

Newspapers are in the business of selling newspapers and thus highlight the requisite affinity group connections. When I lived in Tasmania, for example, most mainland stories were presented via some Tasmanian connection, no matter how spurious. This was done to sell papers and countless studies demonstrate that it works.

If you seriously think newspapers (and media courses like the one I teach) have got it wrong, then you are perfectly entitled to test the market with your own publication.

Should you be successful you will have identified a massive flaw in media theory and I'll grovel before your genius. You will also be fabulously rich.

Bernice said...

Perhaps 'sneak peak' is an unusually honest assessment of the journalistic heights the peeked-at piece is aspiring to, i.e. a molehill of reportage.

Pavlov's Cat said...

Vivian, what a little charmer you are to be sure. Thank you, yes, I am familiar with the 'Nothing important ever happens further away than a donkey ride' school of thought. I did not say that people should not care about their loved ones and neighbours; I said that mindless flag-waving jingoism in reportage was a pain in the arse.

You have, if you will forgive me, one seriously weird criterion there; you appear to think that the definition of the best way to do something is the way that makes the most money. How very simple your life must be.

Anonymous said...

The first time I have ever made a comment on any blog. Here it is: Bravo PC (re Vivian)!

Ampersand Duck said...

My closest connection to the Anthology whinged that it was too heavy. I presume they were talking about the size of the tome. I came very close to repeating my favorite saying of the moment (harden the f*ck up) but restrained myself, since it is a slightly impolite response.
Personally I think it is marvellous and bestow upon you a ginormous Pat on the Back.

Ampersand Duck said...

BTW: I hope that pat made your back feel better.