Our Top 5 favourite things this week are a class above – or is it a class below? Either way class plays a big role in our perception of ourselves and others – including how we go out to dinner!
What’s making us uncomfortable: something to listen to
Many people think that Australia has no class. Wait. That didn’t come out right. Many people think that there’s no class divide in Australia, but ABC’s Earshot tells a different story. ‘The Notion of a fair go is bulls***: Inside the class divide’ explores the classy experiences of comedian Dave O’Neil, writer Christos Tsiolkas and journalist Van Badham. O’Neil remembers the time at uni when he took his rich girlfriend to meet his family, briefing her on the way to prepare her for Nanna’s depression era house. Tsiolkas was the first in his family to go to uni and says many of his relatives are illiterate – he says cultural capital is more important than money. Van Badham got her column in The Guardian after her satirical commentary on class was seen at a pub – someone tweeted in response that “she didn’t even go to private school”. She says she can name at least 40 ACDC songs and thinks it’s a poor reflection on our PM that he can’t name any. For a deeper understanding of the class divide in Australia, check out this one day tour between the classes in Melbourne.
What’s getting us out of the loungeroom: something to read
Going out to dinner is often a lavish (and expensive) affair that we save for special occasions. But are they the occasions you value and remember? We recently met some friends in a cheap and cheerful Thai restaurant, which reminded us of our favourite local restaurant, aka our home away from home. It was comfortable, the food was good, the service was friendly, and it was reasonably priced. You could sit for hours, meet the locals and other regulars too if you wanted. New York sommelier Amanda Smeltz calls this the third place – after our homes and workplaces – the place we can relax, ruminate and reflect. Like the bar in Cheers, or the café in Seinfeld, or Luigi’s place in League of Gentlemen.
What’s making us laugh: something to watch
Duck Quacks Don’t Echo. Not only is it a fact, but it’s the name of a UK show hosted by Lee Mack, the incredibly quick comedian who is the real reason we watch ‘Would I Lie To You’. ‘Duck Quacks Don’t Echo’ is like Mythbusters with laughs, thanks to Lee and his co-hosts. We recently caught an episode from 2014 with co-hosts Sue Perkins and one of our favourites Bob Mortimer (who got old! How? Why?). There seems to be some sort of points system, but like ‘Nevermind the Buzzcocks’ the entertainment is in the distractions and that’s all we’re really interested in. We did learn a few things, including a sure-fire way to make sure your wallet or purse will be returned if it gets lost.
What’s got us so happy and relaxed: something to read
Just in time for Mindful in May, Dr Elise Bialylew has published her new book The Happiness Plan. Elise created Mindful in May to encourage us to meditate and practice mindfulness on a daily basis for 31 days, which will hopefully become a habit. That’s where The Happiness Plan comes in – with a roadmap to guide us through May and every month after that. The book offers a deeper exploration of the things that impact our happiness and therefore, our healthiness. Elise has a lovely way of writing and the book includes links to guided meditations that we have tried and recommend!
What’s got us feeling proud: something to listen to
There ain’t alf been some clever bastards, and our friend Joel Church is one of them. We worked with Joel at the ABC a few years ago before he chuffed off to the BBC. Over the past few weeks he popped home to New Zealand – we could tell because he kept putting photos from his misspent youth up on Facebook. When he wasn’t doing that he just recorded an EP and released it on Spotify. His band is called Plastic Police and the four track EP is called Bloom. Joel’s got an endless passion for music (we can see what he’s listening to on Spotify!) and we can hear many of those influences here, including The Cure, Echo & The Bunnymen, and of course Radiohead and Nirvana! Do yourself a favour!