Thursday, April 23, 2015

I felt a trembling

"...They built a prison and it tempered in the sun
It rose up off a plateau like a last tooth in a gum..."

  (The Drones - Locust)

This week grief, depression, hopelessness, rage, sadness crept through every crack and crevice of the barely adequate spiritual blockades I’d erected around my torn soul and aching heart. I touched the deepest craving for oblivion and silence and threw myself out with the bathwater and sludge of 10,000 opinions of the greedy selfish mob, I cast myself naked to the great Whatever…! I asked for death and embraced it’s blank empty promise… As I peddled to work I felt the weight of malice and my rage consumed me. Tears dripped from my cheeks and flowed back across my face while my legs persisted against my will to continue on my way to work, tears in my ears and bloodshot eyes I sang hurt songs for Wisdom at the top of my voice and my dry throat hurt… I met with the Christian son of man and God they call Jesus ‘Christ’…

Memento Mori… MEMENTO MORI!.... memento mori. Not some day! NOW!

Grace… peace...  

My despair burned into my skin left the mark of a Celtic Cross on my back. Give up grief. fight FIGHT!

 Yesterday I met a fella who cheered me up... The answer? Spread the love!

Why did I feel so low?

Today the life of a small child is in our hands, she is not the only one but she is real and we have heard her story.. Her tiny hopeful body is in our Prison her mind and soul already tortured and enslaved, she is damaged and condemned to be broken for our sake.

It’s just down the road, not far from here where others like her are kept behind razor wire in preparation to be sent back to an unbearable and intolerable fate on a small island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean! Nauru… HELL!

It’s not new children have been sent there for a couple of years now at the pleasure of the Australian Government. What makes this child different is that they can no longer say this child will come to no harm! (We have the Moss Review on Nauru) We know she will. This is no time to sit back and read about it in the news. NOW is the time to make the news, break the silence TURN THE TABLES!

(Updated 24/04/15) 

Saturday, April 18, 2015

A short dialogue on belonging

I heard they were sending pregnant women, babies and small children back to the hell hole detention centre at Nauru... Where there is now reliable evidence of child abuse.
It seams all manner of appeal has been made for mercy but fallen on deaf ears.
There appears no way to reason with this Government which appears to have gone completely off the reservation. Without an informed democratic

At this stage I slump back into a state of morbid disbelief. Sit on the couch with the kids and zone out in front of a movie. The truth is painfully obvious but over and over we endure bullshit rationalizations and even engage in arguing against nonsense.

As I watch a kids movie the answers to these challenging questions appear to me regularly throughout the plot of the film. The answers are simple and can be presented clearly enough in a two line conversation in a children's movie, in this case Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium (2007).

As I think of the children born in Australian territory to stateless parents who wait in a legal limbo for acceptance as refugees. Where they belong and who should care for them is blatantly obvious. Mr Magorium answers the question in the film when Henry the mutant inquires:

 Henry Weston (Mutant): You have a tenant living in your basement? 

 Mr. Edward Magorium: He was born there, I can't very well ask him to leave.

Where do all the children born in Immigration detention belong?The answer is simple.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Ego's little joke

I am Gene Wilder's bloodshot eyes

I am Cleaver Green hanging inverted from a hot air balloon

Monday, March 30, 2015


Below is a speech made by the Australian Author Tim Winton regarding the cruel treatment of refugees under Australian Immigration Detention laws.. I have spent time with refugees in the Darwin camps and I have seen the suffering our Country has caused.
 I have witnessed the wrong doing of my Government, it's policies and its agents and I reject them! 

Palm Sunday event Nightcliff Jetty (image courtesy of DASSAN facebook)

Until we are all free , none of us are free

" To those in power who say they're exiling and caging children for their own good, I say we've heard that nonsense before. So, don't do it in my name.
To those who say they're prolonging misery to save life, I say I've heard that nonsense before. You don't speak for me; I don't recognise your perverse accountancy.
To those in power who say the means will justify the end, I say I've heard that nonsense before. It's the tyrant's lie. Don't you dare utter it in my name.
To those who say this matter is resolved, I say no. For pity's sake, no. For the love of God, no. A settlement built on suffering will never be settled. An economy built on cruelty is a swindle. A sense of comfort built upon the crushed spirits of children is but a delusion that feeds ghosts and unleashes fresh terrors.
If current refugee policy is common sense, then I refuse to accept it. I dissent. And many of my countrymen and women dissent alongside me..
Because the secret won't hold. It's out already. There are witnesses. There will be testimony. We will remember. In another time, and very soon, I think, our common sense will be nonsense. And you'll have to ask yourself, was it worth it? This false piece of mind, this stopping of the boats. Was it worth the price paid in human suffering? You're not alone; the rest of us will have to face it, too.
We're losing our way. We have hardened our hearts. I fear we have devalued the currency of mercy. Children have asked for bread and we gave them stones. So turn back. I beg you. For the children's sake. For the sake of this nation's spirit. Raise us back up to our best selves. Turn back while there's still time."

Sunday, March 29, 2015

What's so special about my long bike?

I keep posting about this bike because after 7 years of riding with the Xtracycle FreeRacial system attached to my bike I still find it an amazingly versatile and useful machine!

Xtracycle fitted
My Xtracycle back in 2008
Xtracycle have lead the way in longtail cargo bikes and various other bicycle innovations. The FreeRadical has undergone some changes since I bought mine and now it seems they've discontinued production but... are in the process of developing a new design called The Leap, (It seems MegaRack has been dropped). Check their website for some great videos documenting the history of the Xtracycle. HERE

 Here's Ross Evans CEO and designer of the Xtracycle to talk about production of TheLeap

If you want to see some Xtracycle longtail bikes in action check out Riding The Spine.
There are weaknesses in the design of the original FreeRadical and it does have weak points but I've never had any problems at all. I have carried some seriously heavy loads and have been a bit worried about the strength of the forward mount but it's held out so far.

I believe the main reason my rig has lasted so long is the frame I've attached the kit to. This 1990s steel Raleigh frame is a standard diamond design with the old style bracket across the chain stays which suits the FreeRadical kit design perfectly. I'd love to get into the nitty gritty of the versatility of this bike, how many kms I've done, how effective this bike is at carying loads commuting etc... etc... Maybe some other time...

Saturday, March 28, 2015

FreeLoaders welcome

Last year when I went to Melbourne to join the Great Victorian Bike ride I dropped into the Cargocycles store in Collingwood, where I met the owner and he showed me his awesome collection of electric cargo bikes and other useful stuff we don't see here in Darwin.

The reason for my visit was to get replacement bags for my Xtracycle, not many places in Australia stock them. I think the bags (called FreeLoaders) may have gone out of production. I would have liked to have tried to make my own but I haven't used a sewing machine in years, don't have a sewing machine and don't have the time so... I ordered a new set from Garry at Cargocycles and stuffed them into my crowded tool shed until the bike was ready.

Long bike with FreeLoaders attached

Now that I've got a new bottom bracket, the bike is ready. FreeLoaders attached. Ready for some cargo hauling action!

First ride with the new BB, Drive train is much stronger than before but I need a new gear shifter and cable.