Lessons

Be yourself.
THE STARS:
The other day when exiting the cinema after seeing The Avengers, I heard a lady ask her three children if they could identify the moral of the movie.
“And what lesson did we learn from that?” she asked indulgently, her laser eyes flickering through the developing intellects of her children, desperately seeking to eliminate spiritual flaws. The faces of the children fell. ‘Um… friendship?’ ventured one. I think he was right.
A better answer would have been to bellow furiously ‘IT WAS SHITTING AWESOME, MUM! BLAAAAAARGH’ and jump from the roof of the carpark and destroy a bunch of cars or something.
If being unutterably lame was a superpower, then that Mum would have had a place reserved in the Avengers. Because, instead of allowing her child to get away with a perfectly plausible answer to a stupid question, she had to flex her lame muscles and provide her own moral for the Avengers.
‘Well, I think they learnt that it’s important to think about others.’
FRIENDSHIP
LACK OF STARS:
I’ve mentioned before that I don’t have kids, so if I accidentally give child-rearing tips in the stream of consciousness barrage that is this blog, you’re probably better off ignoring them. Then again, I used to be a kid, and then I grew out of it – which I believe means that I won childhood. But if I ever have to raise womb invaders, I’m not sure I would be so vehement about discovering lessons or morals in things. Much like Santa, this is a concept that the child will eventually learn is utter ballbags, and the world will be much harder to deal with from then on. Wouldn’t it be better to for that Mum to have come out and say
‘Gee fucking whiz, that Joss Whedon can write dialogue like a superstar.’
And the kids clamour around her like bats around a hysterical 60′s era starlet with big hair, and ask ‘But what was the lesson, mama. The moral?’
And she thinks about it, lights a cigarette and takes a swig from her flask of awesome and says -
‘I think the moral of the Avengers was that sometimes things happen, and people have to do something about it. And it doesn’t really mean much, except that it’s cool when Thor hits things and funny when the Hulk does.’
And instead of growing up in a world where they look for ethical guidance from the random chaos around them, they learn to enjoy the meaningless, like when Mark Ruffalo goes mad or Scarlett Johansen wears leather.
The lesson you should get from this article, is that if you haven’t seen The Avengers, you really should before some jerk spoils it, like I almost did in this article.
THE SCORE:
1.5/5 stars

Buses

Oh mobile stinklizard, oh wheeled time-bandit.
STARS:
The tiny Lenin that lives in my sternum raises his ineffectual communist fists to the sky and screams a shrill wail of triumph at the thought of the bus. This communal car helping the masses distribute to their places of labour, owned by no-one but the government, obeying the rules only of its own bloated sense of purpose.
Much like the classic film, The Hunt for the Red October, buses are like submarines filled with communist intention trying to blend in with a pod of whales which represent democratic governmental structure. And much like that analogy, while the intent was pure, the result just didn’t quite work. Submarines.
LACK OF STARS:
Who can forget the penultimate scene of ‘Hunt for the Red October’? With Sean Connery and his beard bristling with barely contained fury, bodily lifting the submarine over the Suez Canal, screaming ‘SEE YOU… IN HELL!’
Moses? Put that submarine down, right now.
Unfortunately buses don’t have a Sean Connery to lift them from the muck of their own ineptitude, and instead these murmuring, half-broken machines bumble around our streets with all the ineptitude of a Rob Schneider with ten broken fingers trying to call his own mother on a tiny smartphone. And then acting.
Trying to make sense of a buses timetable is about as rewarding as watching Doctor Who with two harpoons jutting out of your eyes and then trying to logically analyse the linearity of plotlines. Sometimes in order to swallow the rising apoplexy, I imagine that each bus must skirt the edge of a black hole, warping space and time and endangering everybody on board. It only helps a little bit.
And now that it’s winter (again? I know, right?), buses become nomadic saunas designed to circulate a fine mist of body stench directly into your lungs. Trickles of black water curl sluggishly around your hefty manbag and the interior temperature is so uncomfortably warm that you fall asleep and drool on a hirsute young man from Sydney Uni.
THE SCORE:
2/5 stars

Small Talk

Moving in the cut-throat world of independent theatre as I do, I’ve become an absolute master of the crucial skill known as foyer small talk.
THE STARS:
Here’s a list of things you absolutely must do:
Be Personable and Fun -
No-one likes a fuddy-duddy bowing from the waist and calling you sirrah from atop his theatre horse. Instead, mix it up and show that you are ‘down’ with the youth element that convert warehouse spaces into raves and confronting galleries. If there’s one thing the theatre world wants apart from money, recognition and purpose in life, it’s to feel culturally relevant. Acceptable opening lines when confronting your thespian buds, are phrases like ‘How goes it, my demonlords?’ Or ‘Smashtastic, personally I think there are TOO many women writers’ while slapping yourself about the head.
Forget Everybody’s Name -
It’s really bad form to greet people by their names. All this shows is that the person you are greeting is more important than you are. In fact, one of the best ways to get by when people say hello, is simply to just drool furiously for a few seconds.
It’s been a pleasure.

Drink to Excess –
That way, your opinion of whatever travesty you just saw in the theatre, effectively becomes nullified. If you liked it, you’ll back it up with all the enthusiasm of a thousand house reds. And if you didn’t like it, people will just assume you’re drunk. Because you are.
LACK OF STARS:
Here’s a list of things you absolutely must not do:
Talk About Theatre -
We get it. You’re in a theatre. It means you must be involved in theatre in some way. Therefore you have logically seen other theatre. Boring! Mix it up a little bit. Talk about that time you threw a ferret at someone. Emphasise your point by throwing a ferret at someone.
Ask Polite Questions -
This is a sign of weakness in the turgid swamp of foyer small talk. If you must seek out information, do this in the manner of a Nazi inquisitor or perhaps a drill sergeant. Keep your victim off guard by slamming your fist on the table repeatedly. Consider water torture.
HAVE YOU BEEN WORKING ON ANYTHING NEW, MOTHERFUCKER?
WELL, HAVE YOU?
Ride in on a Motorbike wearing a Whoopi Goldberg Mask While Reciting Aussie Hip-Hop Lyrics in a Dull Monotone -
You can do better than that, man.
THE SCORE:
1/5 stars.
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