Thursday, June 29, 2006

"And the Oscar goes to...."

Rusty sends me this picture which I expected wouldn't be too far behind the Socceroos loss to Italy... who it has to be said showed their wily experience in the 93rd minute with this magestic swan dive!!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Football World Cup

OK OK breaking my embargo!!
For many years now I have dined out on the fun of hassling my friends who were soccer fans about the futility of their sport and the inherent beauty of rugby union 'the game they play in heaven'... just with no referees...

Many have become frustrated and indignant at my jibes.... only delivered because they hit the target and create a great deal of amusement watching these lads squirm!!

Little did most of them know that until about 8 years ago I used to stay up and watch the FA Cup Final live [ocassionally hosting up to thirty friends for a party, used to enjoy the Saturday replay with hot dogs made on toast before heading off to my sport of choice and followed West Ham 'the hammers' since just before their early 70s FA Cup success... with the then 21 year old Mervyn Day in goals... Lampard, Bonds, Curbishley and frightful ribbing of my mate Martin who was 'dyed in the wool' Liverpool all the way!! Then in 1982 when I was obsessed with rugby and cricket I pretty much failed legal studies by instead watching the '82 World Cup in the Uni Coffee Lounge...

So all that having been said... what a brilliant performance by the Socceroos!! Finally being able to show their collective talent thats on parade in comps right across the UK and Europe and because of which many previous campaigns have suffered.

It was a cruel match today... everything soccer offers you...
Yes the penalty was WRONG
But also we had half an hour one man up to score
We did well to repel lots of shots on goal but didn't put ours away
Aloisi perhaps came on ten minutes late!!
0-0 after 90 minutes
BUT that leaves you open to a 93rd minute penalty where if Bresciano had stopped the man he would not have had opportunity to fall at the feet of Lucas Neill who had previously been a brilliant brick wall against raids on goal...

Like The Wallabies World Cup loss to England by a drop goal in extra time, the long term satisfaction of having had a go will be paramount!! England were the best team for 18 months to 2 years ahead of that Cup... Australia had played poorly, defeated New Zealand in a cracker with the perfect game plan, repelled the previously swarming England defence and in conditions unsuitable proceeded to say "if you want this damn cup you'll have to pry it out of our grasp as we take our last breath and you'll need to show you're good enough to do that!" and then of course they did... the fact they've been lucky to win a raffle since just makes it all the more deflating... trust me supporters will cheer again...

When the pain of defeat fades and the agony of the penalty wanes we can all retreat back to more normal stories of the Newcastle Jets having more money than sense! Serbs and Croats flare bombing each other in suburban battlegrounds at local stadiums and endless speculation of whether Harry's groin will be right for this or that Asia Cup or Confederations Cup campaign... will Aloisi be home for the friendly against Tonga etc!!

OK normal transmission can now resume!! Go the Wallabies!!

We were robbed!

Sunday, June 25, 2006

"My Name is Earl"

I wrote about this show in January and finally it hits our screens in Oz this week... Thursday at 8 on 7!! I suspect Earl will be an acquired humour and will quickly fade to a graveyard time and that will annoy me because I'll like it... typical!!

The premise is that everytime something good happens for Earl there's something bad right around the corner... maybe because of all the bad things he has done...
So its time to turn that around and make up for all those things...
Earl makes a list and sets about righting those wrongs!!

Will the trailer trash American setting make sense here in anything other than a 'Dukes of Hazzard' kind of way... I'm keen to discover!!


OK so I can finally upgrade from the old VHS copy of one of the most mindblowing concerts ever... especially having been there on the night!!

U2's study in values, the TV generation and the power of that media was a gem!!.... From the big screen TV's, substation under the stage and the german trabant cars suspended overhead to Bono's Macphisto character and the nightly satellite phone call and tuning in to local tv...

‘Zoo TV Live From Sydney’ is set for DVD release in September. As well as the legendary live show, now digitally remastered, the new release comes with a bonus DVD of live tracks, mini-documentaries and the inimitable ‘Video Confessional’.

Filmed at the Football Stadium in Sydney, Australia, in November 1993 - and now only available on something called VHS – the film is directed by David Mallet and produced by Ned O’Hanlon and Rocky Oldham.

Here’s the running order.
Disc One
Show Opening
Zoo Station
The Fly
Even Better Than The Real Thing
Mysterious Ways
Unchained Melody
Until The End Of The World
New Year’s Day
Angel Of Harlem
Stay (Faraway, So Close!)
Satellite Of Love
Dirty Day
Bullet The Blue Sky
Running To Stand Still
Where The Streets Have No Name
Pride (In The Name Of Love)
Daddy’s Gonna Pay For Your Crashed Car
With Or Without You
Love Is Blindness
Can’t Help Falling In Love

Disc Two1.
Bonus Tracks
1. Tryin' To Throw Your Arms Around the World
2. Desire (both taken live from the Zoo TV Special, Yankee Stadium, New York, 29th and 30th August 1992)
3. The Fly
4. Even Better than the Real Thing(both taken live from the Stop Sellafield Concert, G-Mex Centre, Manchester, 19th June 1992)

2. Documentaries
A Fistful of Zoo TV
Zoo TV - The Inside Story
3. Extras
Video Confessional
Numb Karaoke

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

U2 Watch

Here we go....

Word is that it shouldn't be too long before we get more news on the postponed Vertigo Tour dates. Arthur Fogel from TNA, the international promoters of U2’s Vertigo Tour told this week, “We've been working hard to get news for ticket holders and we hope to have some answers/an announcement within the next few weeks”.
We know many U2 fans are trying to make plans for the year ahead, but with this in from TNA, hopefully your wait is close to over.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

George Gregan Plays 120th Rugby Union Test

Credit where its due:
Leadership, presence, confidence, success, defence, composure, organisation...
George has made almost every post a winner in a highly successful international rugby career!!
All this despite a less than perfect pass, a stutter after picking the ball up, a tendency to step back from the ruck before passing and therefore putting pressure on his outside players... and very few attacking snipes of his own [especially since Owen Finegan left the national team]!

The team is more composed when he's in charge, they choose less crazy options but still not always the right ones... its a conundrum but at least the change of coach has meant an excuse to rotate potential successors in and out of game time in coming matches all in the lead up to World Cup 2007 in France!!

Monday, June 12, 2006


Australia's prolific comedy team from 'Working Dog' [The Castle, The Dish, The Panel, Frontline etc] have scored a quiet ratings winner for Oz's TEN network... aimed squarely at the 18-30 demographic!!

It's a simple preimse done well [the secret to any successful creative endeavour] and could be adapted for youth groups and camps...

On the show the stage has a central MC area, one judge who comments on each skit and decides a winner, and two side stages behind screens.

Each week there are at least four guest performers.

At each turn the guest comes out 'in a costume' for a skit they have no other clues about. They walk through a door to the staging area left or right in turn and are greeted by one of up to four regular clued in actors who begins "thank God you're here!" and slowly they have a few one liners to feed to the actor that leave them hanging with a clue to the story but no real details.

So the humour is derived from improv and how the guest deals with the wobblies thrown their way by succeeding clues. Very funny most of the time [except for Frank Woodley in the season finale].

At a youth ministry activity you'd need:
  • A small collection of leaders or group members who could construct a skit given a rough outline and a few clues that get dropped in the conversation
  • A collection of props and clothes from the local op shop
  • A set of pre written skit scenarios
  • an MC
  • a Judge
  • Ability to set up for a move from one side of the stage or performance space to the other OR a quick change crew to put out very basic props and visuals
  • A data projector or TV could provide still shots to enhance the props

Later in the year I might have space to sketch out some scenarios which could be used. One key is that the skit participants work cooperatively with a spirit of fun and a desire to 'go along with' the guests improv while still dropping in contradictions or info as the skit unfolds but if thats done vindictively or with too much negativity it won't work!!

For an inevitably more eloquent and complete description of the new show check out my new favourite research tool wikipedia here at

iPod War

The latest musical fun in a few select Sydney pubs seems to be a competition where punters are invited to program a 20 minute playlist of their choice on their ipod... these are signed up and played so patrons can vote on which selection they liked most... winner gets a cash prize!!

This would be easy to do as a youth ministry activity with choice of one or more songs or as a way to fill the background at a camp where CDs were played. Punters name a song each, you burn it to a CD/s and play the selection over the weekend.

You could ask young people to choose a song and develop a flash or powerpoint audio-visual and award prizes for various aspects plus end up with some useful stuff for reflection/discussion...

$#@%^ Free Zone

Soccer World Cup
Vince and Jen
Nic's nuptuals

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Hooters Family Restaurant

After an ill-fated attempt at inner western Sydney it seems that America's famous 'family dining experience' is on its way to Parramatta and the Shire over the next 6-12 months!!
Much like Lonestar, Hogs Breathe, Planet Hollywood etc the menu is a mix of wings, ribs, fries and soft drink with an emphasis on highly qualified waitresses!!
It'll be intersting to see if the fun cheerleader style translates to Aussie culture of if the behaviour of a hromonal lunatic fringe drives it out of business again... maybe not the venue for your next youth ministry leadership team celebration!!

"Suburban Songbook" Bob Evans

Jebediah's Kevin Mitchell hits the road solo with an album under the name Bob Evans [supporting Josh Pyke] and taking in 'Slendour in the Grass' in July at Byron Bay!!

The voice is familiar and the music is interesting in that male version of Claire Bowditch, Missy Higgins etc etc kind of way...

I first heard "Don't You Think It's Time" [the CD single] on radio and Kev talking about how his musical inspirations had done something genius by the time they were 25 so at 23 it 'was time' to do some writing and recording and see what he could come up with... its a good story!

I had already been thinking about an alt.worship space around the theme 'Time and Space' so now I have my theme music...

Anyhow Jebediah fans wouldn't be disappointed with alter ego Bob Evans work!!

U2 Watch

check for this weekends apology that arrangements are taking time to lock in... if you had tickets for Sydney's Friday night U2 show I'd lock in 24th November but I'd still cancel everything for three weeks either side!!

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Row M Seat 30 "Chumscrubber"

From the Triple J regular Mailing:

J MAIL GIVEAWAY: Chumscrubber film preview.
Chumscrubber is a new indie American teen movie set squarely in the Californian suburbs. It's a surreal, cautionary tale about Dean Stiffle, an alienated teenager, forced to confront the disconnection in his life after the death of his best friend.
It's dark, often funny and unpredictable film, sandwiched somewhere between comedy and drama, and classic teen movies Donnie Darko and Thumbsucker.
The cast is impressive too, including Billy Elliot's Jamie Bell, Thumbsucker's Lou Taylor Pucci and screen veteran Glenn Close.

Official website:
triple j will be presenting preview screenings later this month around the country
PERTH: Tues 6th June 9:00
BRISBANE: Tues 6th June 6:45
SYDNEY: Tues 6th June 6:45
ADELAIDE: Wed 7th June 6:30
MELBOURNE: Wed 7th June 6:30
For your chance to win a double invitation to one of the screenings, simply hit the link below.">

Chumscrubber is rated PG.
Audience members must be 15 or older, or accompanied by a parent or legal guardian
100 winners in each state will be selected at random and will be sent a double pass.
Entries close midnight Tuesday May 30.

Preview available for download with Quicktime Pro at

"One" Mary J Blige and U2

I have posted about this track before BUT after conversation this week with colleague Nicole I saw the new clip this morning and its great!!

This song is relevant to world poverty, unity, globalisation, worship, hope, discussion, reflection, as a backing for prayer, movement, etc etc!!

Bono had a rockstar moment in describing it as "the now definitive version of One" after the Grammys earlier this year!!

"Brand New Day" Alex Lloyd Acoustic

Alex Lloyd has called in another Balmain boy with a great clip for this acoustic reworking from his self titled album. David Wenham rides a bus with Alex.

The acoustic reworkings are sold as a package with the self titled album and seperately. The track on "Dancing With the Stars" while a professional couple danced was quite brilliant from the fatman in a thinner man's body!!

"World, Hold On" Bob Sinclar

It's amazing what you can catch up with when you're home for the weekend!!
This dance track from Bob Sinclar would have been handy two weeks ago when speaking at a Camp with the theme... "It's Not Rocket Science!"
The largely ambient track has a young boy being inspired and eventually building his own rocket in his bedroom and successfully launching into the galaxy while the "world, hold on... its gonna be OK" rythmn fills the background...

Available for grainy low res download with Quicktime Pro from his own website