Stuff I've written...
Thin Man Walking
Published in Body+Soul Magazine then reprinted in textbooks
The kid had gotten skinny since I last saw him. A year before he'd looked like any average Newcastle teenager - a shock of bleached blonde hair crowning a healthy, yet untidy schoolboy. Goofing off with his mates as he waved his school years goodbye.
I saw his face months later in one of the countless music publications and he looked, well, gaunt. His skin looked like it had been vacuum-packed onto his skull. Areas of flesh sucked inwards between the skeletal mass. The worst thing, though, was the eyes.
They had a well-spooked look that seemed to say; "don't even go there".And then a few weeks later it was out. First on American MTV and then in Rolling Stone magazine - "silverchair's Daniel Johns Reveals His Battle With Anorexia". I remember thinking; "yeah, right. 'Anorexia' must be the new metaphor for 'The Rock Lifestyle'. Guys don't get it - it's a chick thing. He must have been partying too hard".
Consumed by the need to consume
Published in the Australian Design Awards Yearbook
VW BEETLE. THE COCA-COLA BOTTLE. ZIPPOLIGHTERS. THE ROLEX OYSTER WATCH. TUPPERWARE.THE LONDON UNDERGROUND MAP. LEGO. THE HILLSHOIST. BARBIE. UNIVERS FONT. SONY WALKMAN.
My God! They’re a sexy bunch! Just a small sample of products, designs and ideas that still swagger with the cocksure, casual glee of the rockstar. Although,some are so old that the term“Diva”might be more appropriate, they refuse to age and overdose on their own ennui.
These icons,and more like them,informed and inspired us. For many, they became signposts that defined the times – best and worst – of our lives.
Beware the Infidel with the Weenie in his Hand.
Published in Australian GQ Magazine. CAUTION: Strong language
Their fingers were entwined like brown rivulets of Himalayan slurry. I tried not to stare as the younger guy spoke. “Meet us tonight at Khyber Bazaar, in the old city." said Aijaz. "Come about 8.30”. The way his arm was draped languidly around Mohammed’s shoulders said, well in Sydney anyway, big frock cabaret. But Peshawar is a long way from Sydney. In fact, it’s a long way from anywhere – except, the famous Khyber Pass. The place that's launched a thousand bum jokes and arguably the best Carry On film so far.
Peshawar sits nestled uneasily amongst the wild tribal lands of the NorthWest Frontier Province. Outside the city, in the fort-encrusted Pashtun lands, is a veritable no-man's land. The British couldn't tame these people and the Pakistani Government is certainly not going to try. In fact the only thing the British got from here was a cute bit of rhyming slang and dysentery.
Buzkashi – biffo Afghani style.
Published in Australian GQ Magazine.
Story by Mark Elder & Prue Rushton
Photography by Mark Elder
The goat has been submersed up to its neck in water for several days. Not that it is uncomfortable – it doesn’t have a head. And its legs had been hacked off at the middle joint. The final indignity is that its innards are sitting off in another part of the house. Some of it might be cooked and eaten, the rest maybe given to the dogs, but the aim of this piece of butchery isn’t primarily culinary.
The main aim is to transform the animal into a huge, hairy, waterlogged football – hard to grab, heavy to hold. Weighing in at between 40 to 50 kilos, it will soon take pride of place in one of the oldest most aggressive games in the world.