More shrieking, more laments, more woe, raining down at Northcott Housing Ghetto. Clover Moore, the punked-out Lord Mayor of Sydney, came to our Community Centre to gladhandle the demi-monde in an attempt to mollify a moaning crowd of fearful residents. Most of us here are at the bottom of the heap, society dumps on us, we murder each other in angst, and she's trying to plaster it over with a mouthful of platitudes. In response, the very next day, some poor soul could take it no more and leapt from his 24th floor balcony, another faceless squish upon the cold concrete. If the statistics on suicide were publicised, our conservative P.M. John Cowherd's economic miracle would be exposed for the cruel, Dickensian system it is. And he wants to introduce Christian Chaplains into the schools to soothe any psychic wounds, more brain-wash band-aids, if his world-view really operated he would burn in Hell for eternity for his cynical money-grubbing idolatry.
As a metaphor for our times, I suppose the torture-porn movie "Saw 3" is apt, our TV news tells us nightly of bodies found all over that have been tortured to death, a medieavil gore-fest that has us cold and numb, like the woman frozen in the film, vicarious relief at somebody else's bad luck. The teenage audience I saw the movie with went deadly silent thru.out the screening, no moans, yelps, laughs, or yuks like there usually is, just total absorbed fascination with torture after torture, to a headbanging rock soundtrack. The story was irrational, repetitive and non-scary, I was most dissatisfied, giving it only 4 "Dings" on my schlockometer for the mis en scene of the torture machinery, but the teens all clapped at the flat denouement, like they thought it was clever, really a stop-gap ending with the aim of milking more money from a rotten piece of fruit that had been squeezed dry. The only scene I really liked was the judge being drowned in the vat of minced pig-guts, as if there is some justice in the world after all.
But around every grungy corner can be a de-light-ful event, I was invited to "Cross Projections", involving 14 photographers who flash their work up onto an auditorium wall with a sweet sountrack as accompaniment, many of the photos extremely luminous, like the miracle and wonder of life shines thru the gloom, the weirdest of humanity made to look like angels, I got very high and wept in ecstacy. Aboriginals in the bush, a gang of strippers in the outer-suburbs, Goth/punk teenagers who hang around Hyde Park, there was even a set of images on the deviants of Kings Cross, all the monsters we see daily, the druggies, drunks, hookers and perverts, who in glorious black and white look interesting, iconic, human even, tho I noticed it was the one series that Vitto didnt clap uproariously for, he's been on the Cross too long and sees these villains as the pain in the arse they collectively are, no gorgeous framing will lighten his view of them, they're always rudely clammering at his cafe door for some handout. But I loved the show, in this medieavil labyrnth of Sydney, it was a light on the hill.
P.S. I just got a phone call from the wife of the 1st guy who suicided here at Northcott last week, she's been put onto me by a mutual girlfriend. She says the police are bullshitting her about his supposed suicide, she saw his body in the morgue and it was covered in bruises and scratches as if he'd been fighting with someone. I told her I'd just met someone who saw his body, it was naked except for a pair of shoes and socks, which seems to be the costume of a suicide. She had the paranoid fear the cops were covering up the death because they were dealing the drugs in the building and were killing off people who got in their way. I assured her that was a bit far-fetched, the more obvious truth was they can't be bothered investigating the death of a drug addict and the powers that be don't want Northcott to gain any more notoriety as "Murder Central", (suicide does not get publicised in the press), so she can blame negligence, laziness and fear of notoriety on the cops, nothing more sinister, tho in this ugly world the most terrible facts do come to light to one's shocked surprise. She needed closure, and counselling, and I talked to her for an hour trying to soothe her shattered soul. I hope her and her husband find some eternal rest, here at Northcott it's a long time coming.