How Hobart got its mojo back

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Five years ago, Hobart was almost a ghost town. Shops were closing, the streets were empty, and a gloom pervaded this small city of 250,000 people.
But now, Hobart’s got its mojo back.
What’s happened?
Is it MONA — the Museum of Old and New Art — built on the gambling proceeds of its elusive owner?  Is it the festivals,…

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Keith Richards and his fortunate accidents

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Recently, I watched Keith Richards in a series of YouTube clips.

The Rolling Stones guitar player is beginning to resemble Merlin, or would, if the wizard’s wardrobe consisted of colorful bandannas, multiple ear piercings and coins dangling from his hair.

Ironically, despite the wheezy sound of emphysema whenever he laughs, this 1960s relic proves that a…

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Who wants to play Amanda Seyfried Stole My Face?

I’ve invented a game.

It’s called Amanda Seyfried Stole My Face (a Replaceable Actors spin-off)

Amanda Seyfried Stole My Face goes something like this: What would you do if you fell into a black hole and emerged in another reality to discover someone has stolen your career?

(Strangely, something like this seems to have happened…

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Beat Street Print Edition

Beat Street is now available in print.

The print edition contains the original eBook interviews with Russell Crowe, Hugo Weaving and Annie Sprinkle with bonus material including celebrity reincarnation, whether Kim Kardashian is a modern fertility goddess and how rock stars can be history teachers.

And, if you buy a print book you get the Kindle edition free.

The same…

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Is Kim Kardashian a modern fertility goddess?


Fertility goddesses from the Paleolithic era have long been a source of mystery. These statues, referred to as Venus because they are all obese Paleolithic women, originally appeared around 30,000 years ago. Nobody, it seems, knows why they were created and what they represent. Nor does anyone know why they have enormous bellies, protruding pubic areas,…

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Stone Age Secrets for Mind and Body now in print

Claire Bell’s Stone Age Secrets for Mind and Body is now available in print and if you’re looking for a quirky, practical antidote to our fast-paced world, then this book is for you.

Witty, spirited and packed with delectable recipes, simple exercise routines and lots of ideas on how to be more creative, resilient and playful, Stone Age Secrets for…

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Amanda Bynes: is she Frances Farmer reincarnated?

If you’ve followed my previous reincarnation posts, you’ll be familiar with my premise that contemporary celebrities are recycled versions of former stars and historical figures. Same people, different era.

Recently, another celebrity to attract my — and just about everybody’s — attention  is Amanda Bynes.

Bynes once had a glorious Hollywood career on television and…

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When DreamWorks came to Stanley

“I hope I get Jack Thompson,” Louise says, as she reads the latest email requesting a booking alteration. “I’ve blocked out ten days for accommodation but the dates keep changing.”
Louise and her husband Sam run several B&Bs and the DreamWorks’ film crew have booked out all of Stanley’s accommodation. A…

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The Sims guide to awakening from the dream of “me”

Machinima is a style of film making whereby video game footage is captured and edited to create a new story. It’s an amusing form of storytelling that appropriates one genre of entertainment to create another.

One of Machinima’s most popular creations is the long running Red vs Blue. The footage — captured from the game Halo — uses…

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The pope and his swooshy eBook

Pope Francis and I have something in common but it’s not Catholicism.

The Pope has written an eBook.

You won’t find it on Kindle, though.

No doubt the Pope is busy running the Vatican and doesn’t need the cash, so he happily avoided formatting his book for Amazon’s proprietary Kindle platform. He also side-stepped having…

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Why old rockstars stop fighting and make cheese instead

I’m stuck on rock autobiographies.

Alex James’ autobiography A Bit of a Blur is partly to blame. If you’re unfamiliar with Blur, a four piece British band, you might remember their biggest hit from the 2002 World Cup which consisted of  three lyrics: “Whoo Hoo, Whoo Hoo, Whoo Hoo.”

Blur dominated the…

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Life, the multiverse and everything

The common phrase, ‘I can’t be in two places at the same time,’ might soon be redundant.

Physicists have found that atoms at the quantum level can be indeed be in two places at the same time, flitting between the space/time continuum without moving at all.

However, physicists have yet to discover…

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Why rock stars should be nice to taxi drivers

Deceased rock star Michael Hutchence is in the spotlight again.

No doubt the recent mini-series Never Tear Us Apart: The Untold Story of INXS, which dramatised the rise and fall of one the biggest bands of the 80s and the sad decline of its front-man, is a major factor.

Michael Hutchence, in case…

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Five movie moments that changed my worldview

1. Jesus Christ Superstar

Want to teach a bunch of bored primary school kids the New Testament? Then show them Jesus Christ Superstar, a free-loving musical opera featuring a bunch of singing and dancing hippies.

Great soundtrack. Terrible movie.

But in the mid-70s, when I was ten years old and crammed into a school hall with fidgeting classmates, I…

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The desolation of Cate Blanchett’s audience

You can find anything on the internet, especially articles you wanted to write but were beaten to it by other bloggers.

For instance, when Cate Blanchett won an Oscar for her performance in Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine, I immediately wanted to write a post.

I haven’t seen the film, and Blanchett may have well…

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How 1970s band Boney M taught me history

Youtube is a great companion on a wet and windy afternoon.

Particularly when you can watch hits from the 70s and 80s.

And especially when those hits teach history better than my school ever could.

On one such day, YouTube transported me back to 1978 with a Boney M video. Boney M was a popular four-piece German group comprising three…

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How to communicate with seven words

As we all know, Jackson never made it to the concerts.

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Who’d be a time traveller in Elizabethan England?

The Time Traveller’s Guide to Elizabethan England is a fascinating BBC TV series (on YouTube).

Its premise is that if you were to visit this era, you’d need a visitor’s handbook because the 16th century is no place for 21st century softies like us.

Presenter Ian Mortimer spends much of his life shuffling through musty manuscripts,…

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Miley, Sinead, the Pope and those Middleton girls: reincarnation’s living proof

Alternatively Miley may not have been a patient at all.

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Dear Sir, with Love: An open letter to Baz Lurhman

The second reason you deserve national treasure status is because you take risks.

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