18 November 2019

The importance of being hairy: waxing, shaving and other unnecessary thrills

[First published on Kill Your Darlings, July 2015]

In case you're wondering, this is not me. (Image credit: Glen Bowman)

You must touch my chest hair. It feels like the underbelly of a Persian cat. A thicker hairline snakes down the middle of my torso and then fans out to the sides, onto my back and over my shoulders. When I go to parties I invite friends (and new acquaintances… and strangers) to run their hands through my magical carpet. They stare in horror as I lift my shirt. ‘Real men have hair,’ I say.

16 May 2019

Opera Australia's magnificent production of Rigoletto

[First published on The Plus Ones]

 An opera singer dressed as the court jester, Rigoletto.

Opera Australia's production of Verdi’s Rigoletto offers an experience of gorgeous music and magnificent singing, acting, and visual design.

From the powerful overture, which foreshadows the tone of the narrative, to the dramatic final curtain, this production enthrals the audience. If you ever see one opera, let it be this — you may discover a new passion.

30 September 2018

The secret to the best kebabs


"Hello, my name is Sam. I am the number-one kebab technician in Beirut, Lebanon.

After rolling a kebab in flatbread, you must put it in a hot sandwich press. This stops it from falling apart during consumption. Also, you must put French fries with the kebab. Also beetroot. Also something green, such as lettuce or phlegm.

2 September 2018

5 biggest douchebags of the Royal Botanic Gardens


On 11 November 2017, my visit to a kitty rescue centre was thwarted by closing time.

It was a lovely day, so on the sad journey home I stopped at Melbourne's beautiful Royal Botanic Gardens.

Little did I know, it was rife with douchebags.

6 June 2018

The inspiration for the fireballs at Crown Casino

Eight towers along Melbourne’s Southbank shooting the world’s largest fireballs

These fireballs were inspired by the Arthurian legend in which a young Charlemagne rode into Camelot and lost 20,000 silver pennies on the high-roller blackjack table. He then tried to find work as a dragon slayer, boasting that he once killed seven dragons with only a slingshot and a handful of milk caps. He professed that when dragons die, they expel their remaining fire as farts. And so behold: Charlemagne's Seven Slayed Dragons… farting on the hour, every evening, only in Melbourne.

You can see the Crown Melbourne Gas Brigades along the Yarra Promenade in Southbank, Melbourne. Here's the viewing information:

Evening shows take place on the hour starting at the following times:
  • From 1 December, 9pm
  • From 1 March, 8pm
  • From 1 April, 6pm
  • From 1 October, 8pm

18 March 2018

When you think you've won a prize but your girlfriend points out it's a scam

A comic of a man winning a prize and then learning he was scammed.

I'm usually awesome at spotting a scam, so please, let me elaborate.

Last weekend, I received a text message on my phone from Woolworths, congratulating me on winning a $500 Woolworths Giftcard as part of their Customer of the Month program.

You might think this alone screams "SCAM, SCAM, you idiot! Burn your phone!"

21 January 2018

True colours

The Big Issue, Australia, Number 548 (20 Oct  2 Nov 2017)

Here is my piece that was published in The Big Issue Australia:

The other day, my friends and I were trying to decide between two logo designs – both were identical except that one was Steel Blue and the other was Bubblegum Pink. I said I liked the blue one. “Every white male over thirty loves that one,” one friend said. Everyone laughed, but the comment left me feeling conflicted. I am male and over thirty, and I guess most people would describe my skin as white – on a colour chart it would grade somewhere between Blanched Almond and Papaya Whip – but I’ve never felt white.

20 October 2017

My visionary toilet won me a tablet computer

A few months ago when I was using a toilet at Sydney Airport, I noticed a sign on the wall advertising a "Rate Your Experience" competition.

Challenge accepted.

A questionnaire asking for a bathroom hygience rating.
(I answered generously. I didn't want anyone to lose their job. I'm not a monster.)

(My answer is below, with visual aids, so that you may appreciate the full scope of my vision.)

2 October 2017

Vestmannaeyjar: the Westman Islands of Iceland

Vestmannaeyjar ("Westman Islands") is a small group of islands off the south coast of Iceland. The main island, Heimaey,  has a tiny area of only 13 square kilometres and is still volcanically active.

19 May 2017

Opera Australia's grand production of Carmen

[First published on The Plus Ones

Opera Australia’s colourful production of Carmen brings vibrancy, movement, and fun to Georges Bizet’s otherwise dark tale.

Director John Bell has created a vivid atmosphere to accompany the gorgeous score. Eye-catching costumes offer an explosion of colour and the detailed set has the romantic feel of a Cuban town stuck in a 1950s time warp. Crisp choreography brings even more life to the stage, including dazzling acrobatics from the children’s chorus, which leaves the audience gasping.