Free Delivery on all Books at the Book Depository

Showing All Categories (Show all posts)

ADF reaction to Andrew Hastie's photo use was political, hypocritical

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, June 10, 2016,
Like many I'm deeply disappointed by the decision to dump politician Andrew Hastie from the Army Reserve, simply because he had a photo of himself in uniform in campaign material and refused to remove it

Clearly, the rule about non-politicization of the army is being applied selectively. There have been many cases in which serving soldiers have worn the uniform in highly politicized contexts and they suffered no punishment. 

So Hastie's sin was not to be political. It was to be the wrong kind...
Continue reading ...
 

Mandurah and Mindarie attacks likely to reignite Perth's shark wars

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, June 8, 2016,
It wasn't a matter of if but when there would be another shark attack in West Australian waters. And now we've had two fatal ones in quick succession.

Not surprisingly there's pressure on the government to act. That's why they've placed baited drum lines off Perth's northern beaches to try and hook the noah responsible for the Mindarie attack.

It's a targeted action and seems like a pretty mild, almost symbolic response to what happened. But even this is seen as some sort of crime against natur...
Continue reading ...
 

Fremantle is more like Sydney than Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, May 17, 2016,
Now living in Sydney and recalling my latest time in my home town of Perth, I keep thinking about key aspects of the two cities that give them their unique character.

Architectural history is a key point of difference. One thing you really notice in Sydney, particularly when you're close to the CBD is just how many old buildings there are. And it's not just landmarks and heritage sites. It's also the residences. The majority of occupied houses in suburbs like Stanmore, Newtown and Balmain are ...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth's street art is far better than Sydney's

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, May 17, 2016,
There are many huge differences between Perth and Sydney. Most are to be expected. Take film and TV production. Of course Sydney has more of this because of its far greater size, along with its proximity to other large population centres on the east coast. 

But there are some fields of creative endeavour in which Perth really punches above its weight, even leading its more populous counterparts on the other side of the country. Take street art.

In recent years numerous impressive murals have ap...
Continue reading ...
 

The Fremantle War Memorial, overlooking the historic port city

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, May 14, 2016,
I grew up in Perth and have been to Fremantle countless times, though I have never lived there. Although these two population centres are only about half an hour away from each other on the train, they are very different in character.

Fremantle is definitely more evocative of history than Perth. I think this has much to do with the fact that even though it was established at around the same time (1829) it's much smaller and less built up, so its many heritage listed buildings are more noticeab...
Continue reading ...
 

Renting in Perth has become cheaper, for a while at least

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, May 14, 2016,
I read with interest this story about the big surge in rental vacancies recently, and how this has lowered the average cost of renting in Perth.

Real Estate Institute of Western Australia (REIWA) figures show the number of properties available to rent in Perth is nearly three times above what is considered to be the long-term average.

The oversupply of available rentals is putting downward pressure on prices, with the median rent down to $395 per week for the three quarters to the end of March...

Continue reading ...
 

Subiaco parking inspector subverts paradigm, risks feminist backlash

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, May 7, 2016,
A little story about a gift left to a driver by parking inspector in Subiaco really caught my eye. See, a woman had paid for her ticket but the machine wasn't working, so she called the ranger to tell him. She rather snippily cut him off when he said he'd "leave her a little something on her windscreen". He was good to his word, and left her flowers and a charming poem. 

A couple of things stand out for me here. He definitely behaved in a way considered atypical for members of his profession. ...
Continue reading ...
 

Sorrento shark barrier approved. Issue still looms large, it seems

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, May 6, 2016,
For me, one of the biggest features of living in Perth from 2010-2015 was the shark menace. Some fatalities and numerous sightings over that time and previously meant that pretty much everyone heading to the beach was concerned about the potential risk.

This was a massive change from decades ago. Now having just cracked the half century, I grew up in Perth in the seventies and eighties and was a keen surfer over much of that time. The thought of getting munched by a white pointer was the furt...
Continue reading ...
 

Now living in Sydney, still thinking of Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, March 4, 2016,
You'll notice that I haven't posted for many months now. There are several reasons for this. But the main one is that I actually relocated to Sydney in recent months. I moved for various reasons I won't go into here. But I will probably return eventually (then leave again after a few years!). I have done this several times already. Having grown up in Perth it's still "home" even though I have to get away from it from time to time...

After getting settled in the east I didn't know what to do wi...
Continue reading ...
 

Tareq Kamleh joining ISIS proves emotion trumps intellect

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, April 26, 2015,
Not so long ago it was reported that a former economics student from Perth called Muhammed Sheglabo had signed up for jihad with ISIS. Now there's been an even more alarming story in the same vein.

Doctor Tareq Kamleh, who practised for some time in Subiaco, is now appearing in recruitment videos for the gruesome pre-mediaeval death cult. If this doesn't disprove the hackneyed ol' PC theory that Islamic radicalization springs primarily from legitimate anger against the greedy, racist eeevil we...
Continue reading ...
 

Church of Christ building on Eighth Ave, Maylands

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, April 19, 2015,
I lived in Maylands in 2006-2007. It was quite different then. Not exactly a flash part of Perth, the main drag of Eighth Ave was pretty low key and almost run down. 

Lately, though, there have been some big changes such as the big new library and community centre being built nearby. Upmarket units have been constructed in recent years, most notably on the corner of Eighth and Whatley. As a result the suburb is becoming more attractive to young professionals. 

Eighth Ave itself has a much more ...
Continue reading ...
 

Grand Hotel in Wellington St is now Grand Central Backpackers

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, April 17, 2015,
Perth has some fine old hotels. Some have been lovingly preserved and refurbished. Others haven't fared so well. 

The best example of the latter kind is the old Grand Hotel in Wellington St. You'll see it as you go into the city along Beaufort St as it becomes Barrack St, just near the bridge over the railway line. 

It's still in commercial use, now as the Grand Central Backpackers. Doesn't look in the best of shape, not unlike the venue's tenants, who you sometimes see sitting on one of the li...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth buskers are a colourful bunch

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, March 30, 2015,
One thing I've noticed since returning from Sydney a few years ago is just how many buskers and street performers there are in Perth. Even taking into account the city's significant increase in population, there do seem to be an awful lot of them! When it comes to busking this city seems to punch above its weight -- much like it does for that other mode of self expression, street art.

Granted, many of them are not that good. And some of them are just excruciating. But some are extremely accomp...
Continue reading ...
 

Bon Marche building sadly scarred by graffiti

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, March 28, 2015,
There's a lot of aesthetically pleasing street art in Perth these days -- most of it done with the owners' blessing, I suspect. But there's still too much ugly, stupid "tagging" going on as well. That's depressing on any structure. But it's particularly so when it's inflicted on a beautiful old architectural creation. Sadly, this is what's happened to the Bon Marche building recently. 








Continue reading ...
 

Army surplus stores in Wellington St have been there for ages

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, March 26, 2015,
New construction in the CBD continues apace. You don't have to walk far within the city proper before you see a building site. This is good news in many ways, of course. But it can also be disconcerting -- even a bit depressing -- because some buildings that held sentimental value are just no more. 

But there are still pockets of Perth that seem untouched. Hopefully they will remain this way for quite some time. 

One example is the corner of Wellington and Pier Streets in the city. On that corn...
Continue reading ...
 

Ben Cousins' sad decline continues

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, March 25, 2015,
Ben Cousins has been in the news again lately. This time he wound up being arrested after some bizarre behaviour near a temple in Canning Vale.

A lot of people find his mental problems a bit of a laugh. Check out some of the comment threads on Facebook page updates by news sites and you'll see what I mean. But I think his protracted fall from grace is terribly sad

Clearly drugs have played a huge part in this ongoing tragedy. Meth has clearly damaged his mind severely and it seems permanently...
Continue reading ...
 

The Bassendean Hotel

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, March 24, 2015,
There are many differences between the general atmosphere of Perth and Sydney. Perhaps the biggest relates to the relative amount of space in each city. Perth is far more spread out, giving it a more relaxed feel.

Another big difference: pubs. If you're anywhere near the Sydney CBD, there seems to be a charming old pub on every corner. In Perth they are comparatively few and far between. They're here of course. You just have to look for them.

One of the few Perth hotels that has that comfortabl...
Continue reading ...
 

St Denis Catholic Church in Joondanna

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, March 24, 2015,
As I mentioned in a previous post I've really started noticing churches around Perth. Their function makes them distinctive, of course. Then there's the fact that they aren't overly numerous. Then there's the care that's gone into their construction. Several of them are quite distinctive architecturally also.

Take the St Denist Catholic Church in Joondanna. It has an unusual curved roof that is very noticeable when seen from the side. 







Continue reading ...
 

North Fremantle Fallen Soldiers War Memorial

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, March 23, 2015,
For those keen to get a sense of West Australian history there's a war memorial worth seeing in North Fremantle. Built to honour the fallen of that suburb it is located on Queen Victoria St. It is surrounded by some elegant old buildings including an antique store that enhance its solemn atmosphere. You'll see it if you're driving into Freo from the north.





Continue reading ...
 

The Clanville's Building in East Fremantle

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, March 22, 2015,
As I mentioned before, Fremantle proper probably has the highest concentration of historic architecture in the entire metropolitan area. But there are isolated gems in neighbouring suburbs such as East Fremantle.

The Clanville's Building is a good example. It's on Canning Highway, just near the water, not far from and opposite the well known Tradewinds Hotel.







Continue reading ...
 

Greens now focusing intensely on cyclist safety

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, March 20, 2015,
One thing that you can be sure of with the Greens and other far left parties is that they don't just lack common sense. They seem to be diametrically opposed to it. This is related to their deep sense of their own moral virtue. They sincerely see themselves as more sensitive and compassionate than the rest of us. So they are always on the lookout for issues they can take the high moral ground on, wringing their hands and wagging their fingers and shrieking: "Look at us! Look at how much we ca...
Continue reading ...
 

St Christopher's Anglican Church, Bicton

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, March 15, 2015,
The city's oldest buildings have become much more noticeable to me as I walk through areas where they are most concentrated, such as the CBD and Fremantle. When I'm in the suburbs, however, the buildings that catch my eye tend to be churches.

I'm not sure why this is the case, since I'm an atheist. And I don't think I'll sign up for any of the big faiths any time soon. Perhaps it's because I'm becoming more aware of my mortality, or something ... 

In any case, here's one I saw in the southern ...
Continue reading ...
 

"A Better Cycling Future" won't help McGowan's chances

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, March 12, 2015,
Mark McGowan seems like a decent, intelligent and competent bloke. But I think he's got a tin ear politically, or he gets some very bad advice, or both. He hasn't managed to articulate a clear, cohesive and principled strategy in opposition. His tactic seems to be to try and woo special interest groups with a beef against Colin Barnett and his party in the hope that the numbers will add up to a sum great enough to get him over the line.

I saw him speaking at an anti-shark-cull rally once. That...
Continue reading ...
 

The Charles Building in Queen St Fremantle

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, March 11, 2015,
Fremantle is renowned for its architectural history. There are numerous old building in the port city, with most of them being concentrated near its west end around High St. But there are many individual structures that have clearly been around a very long while indeed. 

Take the Charles Building at 55 Queen St. It houses the business premises of fashion designer Megan Salmon. It's long caught my eye as I've travelled by bus into Freo. So I walked past and took these shots of it recently. 




...
Continue reading ...
 

Junaid Thorne shows extent of radical Islam's influence

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, March 10, 2015,
Controversial Islamic preacher Junaid Thorne has just had his Twitter account suspended for a third and final time. Considering how much content actually gets let through, this says a lot.

And this isn't the only restriction placed on his freedom

Self-proclaimed Islamic sheik Junaid Thorne and two of his associates have been banned from applying for passports and travelling overseas.

Thorne, Mostafa Shiddiquzzaman and Omer Abdirahman Issak appeared in Perth Magistrates Court on Friday, accused...

Continue reading ...
 

Student Muhammed Sheglabo signing up for jihad is alarming

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, February 23, 2015,
Lately residents of this sunny, pleasant, and generally peaceful city have learned of a rather alarming development: We've produced our first jihadi. Student Muhammed Sheglabo has been seduced by dreams of glory in seeking an Islamic caliphate and headed off to fight for this cause in Iraq.

The whole phenomenon is as mad as it is wrong no matter where it occurs in Australia. But it seems doubly so when it happens over here in the mild west. You'd expect a city like Sydney to produce a few guys...
Continue reading ...
 

Spectrum Apartments, corner Newcastle and Charles Streets

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, February 3, 2015,
As well as being a bit obsessed with the old buildings in this city, I always keep an eye out for the new ones that have just popped up, or are on the way. The speed with which immense new structures are built here is quite dizzying.

You'll see a vacant block with a little sales office on it. Then the next time you go past it there'll be a gleaming five storey apartment block there!

The Spectrum Apartments are a case in point. Just went past the location on the weekend. Nothing there now, but i...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth's old buildings interest me more as I age myself

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, February 2, 2015,
Since returning from Sydney to live in my home town of Perth in 2010, I've become increasingly fascinated by a couple of things. Firstly, there's the rate of change in this city. It's amazing. It just keeps getting bigger and busier. The speed of transformation may have plateaued, but it's still pretty frantic. And there seems to be no end in sight. Such a contrast to when I was growing up, and even compared to when I lived here from 1998 until 2002 ... 

The other aspect of Perth that I really...
Continue reading ...
 

Howard St in the CBD has some elegant old buildings

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, January 30, 2015,
Sadly, many of Perth's grandest old buildings have been demolished over the years. Some of them remain, but they're usually quite isolated, being separated by many structures that have been created within the last fifty years or so. This is in contrast to Fremantle, which has done a better job of preserving its architectural past. 

In the CBD there are some sections where clusters of such buildings remain, however. One of these is Howard St, off St George's Terrace.







Continue reading ...
 

The Forrest Place Information Kiosk is aesthetically pleasing

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, January 29, 2015,
If you have been in the Murray St Mall recently, you're sure to have noticed the new information kiosk in Forrest Place. I think they've done a great job with it. It's unique, sleek and very modern looking. It offers a nice contrast to the grand old architecture surrounding it, but doesn't clash for some reason. 

It puts me in mind of a friendly space ship. I find it much more appealing than the green "artwork" nearby. Never liked that at all! Not only nicer to look at, but also more useful an...
Continue reading ...
 

Cycle path near West Leederville Station risky for pedestrians

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, January 28, 2015,
In recent years there has clearly been a national trend of cyclists demanding greater respect on our roads. This has provoked quite a backlash form drivers who consider them a nuisance. Cyclists are very organized and quite bolshie. They have no hesitation in making it known which areas they consider to be particularly dangerous to them.

The growing ranks of lycra clad pedal pushers on the nation's shared paths have annoyed many pedestrians also. This conflict has been quite intense here in P...
Continue reading ...
 

Williamson's Motor House in Guildford Rd Maylands

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, January 28, 2015,
As I get older myself, I tend to notice the older buildings around Perth. They were there when I was growing up. So they often bring back childhood memories.

Many of these buildings are in the city centre. But some are in the suburbs. Take Williamson's Motor House in Guildford Rd, Maylands, for example. When I was there a month or two ago, it looked like work was being done on it. Not sure if it's a viable business at the moment ...

In any case, it is certainly old enough to be listed with the ...
Continue reading ...
 

Scarborough Beach set for further massive transformation

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, January 20, 2015,
I just read about a massive new plan to revitalize Scarborough Beach. It's interesting that so many believe this facelift is needed, because the area has undergone such massive changes already. 

I used to go down to Scarborough Beach back in the seventies. It was always crowded on weekends, and there were heaps of cars in the carparks off the Esplanade there. But it was hardly built up.

The centre of activity was the fish and chips shop called Peter's by the Sea. I fondly recall playing games o...
Continue reading ...
 

Fear of sharks is keeping West Aussies off the beach

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, January 19, 2015,
I grew up in this city and was an avid swimmer and surfer in my youth. During my whole time in the ocean off Perth I don't think I ever saw a shark. And I certainly never fretted over an attack.

I'm a lot older now, of course. So beach-going is not nearly as appealing to me as it was in the past. (Actually, the only surfing I've done for years now has been on the internet!)

But on the rare occasions I have headed to the beach in recent years I've definitely been mindful of the risk of sharks an...
Continue reading ...
 

Old Hole in the Wall Theatre site, Southport St, West Leederville

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, January 15, 2015,
If you enjoy the performing arts and have lived in this city for several decades at least, then you'll remember the old Hole in the Wall Theatre in Southport St, West Leederville. That was its home from 1968 until 1984.

I saw several productions there when I was a kid including Long Day's Journey Into Night way back in 1977. I still recall it vividly and can even remember the name of the woman playing the lead. She was an accomplished local actress called Maggie Anketell.

I have walked down thi...
Continue reading ...
 

Historic olive tree on St Columbas Ave, Wembley

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, January 14, 2015,
As I walk around the suburbs of Perth I keep seeing intriguing sites that I never knew existed. Even though I grew up here I just took so much for granted. Now, at age fifty, I feel like I'm only starting to learn about the city's true character and history.

Recently, for example, I was in Wembley. Just near Lake Monger (which is quite picturesque, by the way) I came across a rusty old plaque on St Columbas Avenue. Referring to the olive tree just nearby, it described how it was planted by th...
Continue reading ...
 

The Luna Cinema mural (on Vincent St wall)

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, January 7, 2015,
Things continue to change apace in this pretty, sunny city. One noticeable trend is the increasing amount of colourful street art being created here. Perth is clearly a bit of a hub for this activity because impressive murals pop up across the city all the time.

Recently, for example, I was in Leedervile. I was stunned to see three giant figures walking across the wall of the Luna Cinema there.

Not sure who painted them. But whoever it was they certainly knew what they were doing and have cre...
Continue reading ...
 

The Railway Hotel facade on Barrack St

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, December 29, 2014,
Whenever I walk down Barrack St in the heart of the CBD I always notice the remnants of a beautiful old building on the eastern side between Wellington and Murray. The facade is just above Bar 138.

Did some Googling recently and discovered that it's what's left of the old Railway Hotel. Glad they kept that part but a shame the rest of it is gone ... 

 





Continue reading ...
 

The Christmas Nativity production in Forrest Place

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, December 21, 2014,
Here in Perth, in this great southern land, the end of the year is actually the hottest time of year. That's why the mostly European winter-themed celebrations can seem so incongruous.

But there's one aspect of them that probably benefits from the hot, arid setting. And that's the Christmas Nativity play that is performed during the evenings in mid December in Forrest Place.

Haven't seen the production myself -- just passed the set during the day. But I suspect most of the action depicted is s...
Continue reading ...
 

The Fremantle Fibonacci Centre in Blinco St

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, December 7, 2014,
Fremantle has a well deserved reputation for being a haven of tolerance and a magnet for arty types and alternative lifestylers. Perhaps the most obvious manifestation of this would be the crowd at the Fremantle Markets. While it's pretty heterogenous, you'll see a lot more ferals, hippies, New Agers and hipsters there than you will at other public venues, that's for sure.

You'll also see signs of Freo's pervasive alternativeness if you walk down its residential streets. More than a few of th...
Continue reading ...
 

Unison on Tenth construction site, Maylands

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, December 7, 2014,
One thing that never ceases to amaze me about Perth these days is how quickly gleaming new buildings pop up. Construction has probably peaked, or may even be on the wane compared to a few years ago. Still, there's a hell of a lot of it going on.

Take the Unison on Tenth project in Maylands

The foundations have yet to be laid. But they've finished clearing the block and it's obviously going to be a mighty impressive apartment building. 



With all the old buildings gone, the graffiti on the neigh...
Continue reading ...
 

The water tower in Nollamara (near Mt Yokine Reservoir)

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, December 2, 2014,
If you're anywhere in Dianella and you look west toward the beach you'll see a couple of large structures up on a hill. One of them is a water tower and another is a satellite tower for the TV stations there. They loom over everything and have been there for many years. (Probably the best place to see them is from the Dianella Plaza, on the corner of Morley Drive and Alexander Drive.)

Hard to know exactly which suburb they're in since both are right on the border of two of them, very close to ...
Continue reading ...
 

Arkana Rd Deli in Westminster has a unique atmosphere

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, November 16, 2014,
Because of a little lead generation business I have I really get around the suburbs of Perth a lot. In these journeys I often find little shops and streets that are really quite evocative.

For some reason it's the milk bars and tuck shops that really do it for me. I think this has something to do with my memories of growing up in Dianella in the seventies and going to the corner store and Dianella Plaza, which was like an awesome wonderland to me then, but much smaller and less crowded than it...
Continue reading ...
 

Memories of Putt Putt Innaloo

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, November 13, 2014,
A few days ago I was in the commercial hub of Innaloo, where the Westfield Shopping Centre is. Whenever I'm in that area my mind goes straight back to the seventies. My dad would take me and my sister down to Scarborough and Trigg beaches on the weekends. And after hours of swimming and surfing, we'd often drop in for a feed at the Hungry Jack's there -- which still remains by the way.

Every now and then we'd go to the miniature golf course nearby known as Putt Putt. As I recall it, this was j...
Continue reading ...
 

Carbon tax repeal means cheaper public transport

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, November 4, 2014,
The manner in which the state government has refunded the cost of the repealed carbon tax to users of public transport seems to have been met with a range of reactions. But I have to say it's fine by me. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that I didn't have to pay a cent to go anywhere I wanted to yesterday.

And I was greeted with another pleasant surprise today: My all day ticket went down from $12.10 to $11.80. Not a huge plunge, but that will add up over time. I get around Perth a lot on ...
Continue reading ...
 

Bloke who sat on whale carcass provokes range of reactions

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, November 2, 2014,
I'm sure you've heard about this boatie who sat on a whale carcass off Rotto as humungous sharks circled around it. There was an interesting range of reactions to this stunt. Not surprisingly, most people thought he was an idiot.

Post by Perth Now.

Nonetheless, some opined that he was a champion and a legend, or at least not in any danger. Not surprisingly the ongoing political battle over the shark cull was a persistent theme in comment threads.

Some of these reactions illustrated the green t...

Continue reading ...
 

Out of control party in Girrawheen reveals societal shift

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, November 1, 2014,
On this blog I often write about how the Perth of today compares to the one I grew up in. In so many ways it's a different and more dangerous place. 

One notable aspect of the change is how teenagers and young people behave. So many of them are feral these days it's scary!

Sure, being over fifty now, I'm well on the way to codgerdom. And oldsters have been griping out whippersnappers since time immemorial. 

But this is different. Take reports of out of control parties in this city. I know they o...
Continue reading ...
 

Greens claim shark cull victory, but Barnett's battle is not over

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, October 24, 2014,
In the wake of Colin Barnett abandoning his sensible shark mitigation strategy (inaccurately labelled a cull by his enemies) the Greens are crowing

They seem to think that their victory on this issue is complete and enduring. But they shouldn't break out the bongs just yet ... 

Sure, the polls may be with their insane do-nothing, humans-have-got-this-coming take on the attacks at the moment. But the odds of another gruesome gobbling at a beach in Perth are high indeed. And if that happens the...
Continue reading ...
 

Startling snake bite surge in areas around Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, October 24, 2014,
Forget about the sharks for a moment! Numerous West Aussies are being attacked by native critters on land as well -- snakes to be exact. 

This report of a suspected snake bite in Jurien Bay is the most recent of several. Obviously it's not part of a concerted effort on Gaia's part -- although I'm sure there are a few shrub-humping greenies who believe that to be the case (and that it's exactly what we deserve).

It's clearly got something to do with the approach of summer, as serpents awake from...
Continue reading ...
 

Local Labor feminist in toilet related portrait outrage

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, October 19, 2014,
Labor really are in dire straits. They have completely lost their way. Federally all they seem able to do is get offended and make false accusations of bigotry -- sexism, mostly. Often it's their leader Bill Shorten doing most of the blustering. So funny considering what scumbags most leftie men are to women. They talk the PC talk, alright. But they sure as hell don't walk the walk. Hell, they don't even crawl the walk most of the time ... 

Shorten's latest display of, er, right-on chivalry ca...
Continue reading ...
 

Meth City series reveals extent of Perth's Ice problem

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, October 15, 2014,
Having returned from Sydney to live in my hometown of Perth back in mid 2010, I've noticed some big changes, many of which I've been posting about on this blog. One of the most alarming has been the sheer scope of the meth problem in this city.

Of course you don't tend to see evidence of it directly most of the time -- although that does happen occasionally. You get a sense of it mainly from news reports of exploding labs, burglaries, drug busts and crazed acts of violence. With so much eviden...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth Ramble livened up the CBD on Sunday

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, October 13, 2014,
Last weekend was a very colourful one in the city centre. Firstly, there was Oktoberfest in the Gardens. While in the CBD I saw lots of young people in their lederhosen, many of them more than a tad tipsy. 

Then yesterday (Sunday) there was the Perth Ramble. As I left Dome Cafe on St Georges Terrace mid-arvo the event was in full swing. There were numerous imaginatively costumed teams all in search of mysterious treasure.

There were so many of them, they actually seemed to constitute the majori...
Continue reading ...
 

Miu Miu store occupies old King St Cafe building

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, October 8, 2014,
Earlier I wrote about how the new Subidoo restaurant replaced the old Oriel Cafe. Well, recently in the CBD I noticed a similar transformation. This one involved the stylish and once very popular King St Cafe. It too closed down.

Now the building has a new tenant. But it's not a cafe or restaurant. It's a fashion house called Miu Miu





A couple of years ago a made a video of the swish little precinct. King St Cafe was still open back then. It appears at about the halfway mark.


Continue reading ...
 

City of Fremantle's free wifi available in Kings Square

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, October 8, 2014,
Free wifi being available across whole areas is now a trend in Australia's big cities, as it is across the entire western world. The City of Perth offers this, as does the City of Fremantle. One particularly appealing part of the Fremantle wifi zone is Kings Square, bang int he heart of the port city and right next to the town hall.



It's a very pleasant place to sit down and surf the net on a sunny day. And if you run out of battery power there are mains outlets provided.



This pleasant scene is...
Continue reading ...
 

The Windsor Cinema in Nedlands

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, October 6, 2014,
Growing up in Perth in the seventies and eighties I have fond memories of seeing films in the city's cinemas. Sadly, some of them are no more. Ironically, a couple of those that have gone were actually comparatively new, like this one in Murray St

Thankfully, many of the older cinema buildings still remain. There's the Cygnet Cinema in Como, and another charming art deco construction, the Windsor Cinema in Stirling Highway, Nedlands. 

Other local art deco buildings are listed here


...
Continue reading ...
 

Subidoo Restaurant now open on old Oriel site in Subiaco

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, October 5, 2014,
When I lived in Subiaco over a decade ago now, it was a lot less built up and bustling than it is today. That area around the corner of Hay St and Rokeby Rd was (and still is) one of the city's premiere cafe strips. One of the trendiest and most stylish cafes was the Oriel. It always seemed to be buzzing. 

Anyway, that fell fallow in recent years. Don't have a clue why. It was a nice place with a great atmosphere and was situated in a great position ... Maybe much of its business was taken awa...
Continue reading ...
 

McGowan's take on Esperance shark attack proves his tin ear

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, October 4, 2014,
Two of the most notable things about Julia Gillard were her inability to judge the public mood, and her utter lack of common sense. While she was brilliant at acquiring and maintaining power at all costs within the Labor Party itself, she hadn't the slightest clue how to sensibly relate to, communicate with and build the enduring trust of the Australian population at large. This "tin ear" is a common affliction in Labor. And the party's West Australian leader Mark McGowan suffers it as well. ...
Continue reading ...
 

Lawyer Simon Watters ruffles feathers at quiz night

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, September 2, 2014,
Every now and then someone of high social standing flouts this age's politically correct conventions and gets severely spanked in the media for it. The latest example is local lawyer Simon Watters, who apparently indulged in some off-colour humour while emcee of a recent quiz night.

I wasn't there to see what's been reported. Maybe it's a beat up as he and others have claimed. And it should be remembered that whenever humour's involved there's always the matter of tone. Sometimes people are tr...
Continue reading ...
 

Apex Harmony "The Shark Cull" is clearly beyond parody

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, September 1, 2014,
Just when I thought that the deep green campaign to stop the West Australian "shark cull" couldn't get any sillier, the outraged nature boyz 'n' girlz waging it have outdone themselves with a deranged doco called Apex Harmony "The Shark Cull".

The title on its own is a hoot. Apex Harmony refers to Sea Shepherd's hilarious "shark defence" campaign. It's like "Shock and Awe" for big fat fish.

The site proudly proclaims that new merchandise will be out soon. Hey, don't these people detest capitali...
Continue reading ...
 

Memorials to those who died on Perth's train lines and roads

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, August 16, 2014,
In any big city it's a sad inevitability that people are killed by passing trains, trucks, buses and cars. Sometimes the sites of these tragedies are marked with little memorials to the victims. If you get around a lot on public transport as I do then you are sure to see them occasionally. 

Perhaps the most widely known was in the recently demolished Wellington St Bus Station. I forget the name of the person who was killed, but I'm pretty sure it was a girl and she was Japanese. The site alway...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth will soon have too many new apartment blocks

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, August 15, 2014,
One of the most striking changes to Perth in the last decade or so has been the profusion of large, gleaming highrise apartment blocks. Sure, the city has long had an impressive skyline. But apart from the CBD it was mostly very low slung and laid back.

Now, there are numerous towering buildings, and not just in or near the city centre. Whenever one or more of these appears it really changes the whole feel of the surrounding area. As a result there are now many parts of Perth that are actuall...
Continue reading ...
 

Karl O'Callaghan's relationship with son Russell

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, August 14, 2014,
Got to feel sorry for Karl O'Callaghan. It must be challenging enough to effectively carry out the high profile job of West Australian Police Commissioner. But to have his son being in such trouble with the law? That must be heart-breaking as well as humiliating. Quite frankly I don't know how he keeps his cool. He must be breaking up inside

And I don't think that his son Russell's behaviour is solely due to drug abuse -- although obviously this is a huge factor. I'm no shrink but it looks t...

Continue reading ...
 

Loss of Station St Markets will alter Subi's character still more

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, August 13, 2014,
I just read a report about how the markets in Subiaco are slated for destruction and will be replaced by huge new shopping outlets. My first thought: That's not surprising! They've been lying fallow for ages ... 
But I then realized that this update referred to plans for the extant Station Street Markets, and not the old Pavillion Markets down the road (pictured below). 



Just goes to show how quickly things continue to change in this area. 
I used to live nearby in a unit on Subiaco Rd, close to...

Continue reading ...
 

Kim Hames's bizarre comments about Gammy's father

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, August 12, 2014,
Kim Hames has disavowed his earlier comments regarding the Sixty Minutes interview with baby Gammy's parents. Initially he said that after watching the interview he felt sure that the girl Pipah was not at risk in the care of David Farnell.

His subsequent about face was primarily due to legal protocol:

"I was convinced with his remorse over those issues and that he loves his baby daughter, and I think he and his wife will take good care of her," he told reporters.

But Dr Hames backflipped later,...

Continue reading ...
 

Drew Gregory's threat to kill Premier shows extent of green hysteria

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, August 9, 2014,
The green campaign to stop the shark cull has been growing gradually more unhinged of late. As well as repeated bolshie demos featuring conga lines of misanthropic cranks there has also been an attack on the Premier's office in Cottesloe. Also, threats have made against fisherman carrying out the cull. 

The latest development: A passionate young activist called Drew Gregory sent Barnett an expletive-laden e-mail threatening to kill him

Okay, so she's just a kid. And she didn't really mean it....
Continue reading ...
 

Salvation at Stirling Station

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, August 7, 2014,
You would no doubt have heard about this heartening incident at Stirling Train Station, in which a hapless commuter who fell between the platform and a train was rescued by pretty much every able bodied man, woman and child present.

Video of it has gone viral, and no wonder. It's a touching example of the goodwill that resides in every human heart, even if it seems not to be overtly expressed that often. 

The incident occurred here, but I don't think there's anything uniquely "Perthesque" abou...
Continue reading ...
 

Is Colin Barnett as arrogant as his detractors claim?

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, July 31, 2014,
Every politician seems to develop a public persona over time. Sometimes it corresponds strongly to his actual personality. But at other times it's very distant. 

Take the nerdy uncle persona of Kevin Rudd. He was always seen as a bit of a dag, but a brainy guy who sincerely had the nations's best interests at heart. He was astonishingly popular for quite some time. Remember how often he was mobbed at shopping centres by people desperate to take selfies with him? 

But slowly his true character e...
Continue reading ...
 

Will PIAF's giant puppets for Anzac subvert the dominant paradigm?

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, July 26, 2014,
There's a proposed Perth International Arts Festival production that sounds very intriguing. It will be part of the Anzac Centenary commemorations and will feature some giant puppets expertly crafted by Frenchmen.

Now, this sounds extremely unusual. Don't know about you, but the first thing that comes to my mind when someone says "giant puppet" is stupid shouty bolshie protest. I also think: crap creations that don't look remotely like the eeevil hate figures they're meant to represent (namely...
Continue reading ...
 

Barnett and Buswell are like Martin and Lewis

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, July 23, 2014,
Troy Buswell is in the news again, this time over alleged hush money paid to a woman whose car he smashed into on that notorious night of drunkenness several months ago. Yet again, Premier Colin Barnett is exasperated by his friend's behaviour.

This time he's even come out and directly criticized the decision to offer the woman money. He's also expressed his frustration over the fact that Buswell hasn't personally paid for the damage to his ministerial car.

This ambivalent reaction is typical...
Continue reading ...
 

Was removing Rolf Harris's plaques, paintings and music overly harsh?

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, July 22, 2014,
The powers that be in Perth certainly didn't waste any time in ripping up that plaque in honour of Rolf Harris that had been nestled in the pavement of St Georges Terrace for several decades (photos below). And other local, interstate and even international organizations made similarly swift decisions regarding what to do with his various honours, paintings and music. 

Some people think that this response to the guilty verdict in his trial has been overly harsh. Take this opinion piece from To...

Continue reading ...
 

Perth's traffic woes prove we're now in the big league

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, July 15, 2014,
Lately the issue of transport in Perth has been dealt with repeatedly in the local media. Clearly, the relentless rise in the city's population has put considerable pressure on our roads, highways and public transport system.

It's something that I've been acutely aware of lately -- probably more so than many other residents -- because I don't have a car and get around solely using public transport. Also, having lived in Sydney for about eight years in two stints over the last fifteen, the chan...
Continue reading ...
 

Mark McGowan's medical marijuana push a tactical error

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, July 6, 2014,
Alannah MacTiernan isn't the only Labor politician moving alarmingly to the green left. There are clearly others in WA Labor who've been afflicted with this tendency, including the leader Mark McGowan. His endorsement of medical marijuana is a case in point.

I have no strong feelings about this proposed policy. If it helps people who are suffering, great. But he should remember that a big chunk of the population have a strong emotional reaction when it comes to the issue of drugs. It doesn't ...
Continue reading ...
 

Dr Philip Nitschke's creepy pro-death crusade

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, July 4, 2014,
Not surprised to learn that Dr Philip Nitschke is in hot water again over his passionate crusade for the right to die "with dignity". (I always think that phrase is kinda weird in and of itself, don't you?  Death is many things, but dignified is not one of them. I mean, how many humans live with dignity, let alone die with it?)

This latest scandal involves a Perth man called Nigel Brayley. In a dark space for various reasons, but certainly not terminally ill, he asked for Nitschke's assistance...
Continue reading ...
 

Memories of Rolf Harris harder to remove than plaques and memorials

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, July 3, 2014,
Like so many people I have been fascinated by the trial of former local hero Rolf Harris, long known as the Boy from Bassendean. Now that his sinister predation of young girls has been proven in a court of law, we all have to recalibrate our view of him.

Government and business organizations have to work out what to do with various plaques and memorials made in honour of the entertainer. After all these symbols don't just celebrate his work but his character as well. Now that this has been fou...
Continue reading ...
 

Anti-shark cull threats end hook supply contract

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, June 28, 2014,
The shark wars seem to be hotting up again now. Sure, there haven't been any major demos like there were during the summer. But that has much to do with the fact that in winter there's so much less beach-going. And with related risks not on the public's radar so much, there's less media attention. And it's that attention that the demonstrators crave more than anything. 

Still, there has been an interesting call in which a talkback caller told the Premier the"gloves were off". He then contradic...
Continue reading ...
 

Alannah MacTiernan gets even greener with euthanasia push

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, June 25, 2014,
There has been a lot of fervent internal debate about the direction that Labor is heading in. Much of this has been focused on the inordinate power that union heavies wield. There's another battle that's ideologically related to this, but tends to get less attention. And that's the tendency of some Labor pollies to go further and further to the Left, into wacky Greens territory. 

Alannah MacTiernan is the best example of this trend in this state. Not so long ago she was blathering about the he...
Continue reading ...
 

McGowan's bikie slur against Buswell

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, April 30, 2014,
There's no denying that politics is a blood sport and that anyone who wants to be treated with kid gloves should give the profession a wide berth. That said, there should be some standards.

For example, indulging in sledges that equate your political enemies with violent low life criminals is unbecoming. That's just what Labor Leader Mark McGowan has done to disgraced former State Treasurer Troy Buswell in an attack referring to the latter's recent behaviour in the aftermath of his disastrous ...
Continue reading ...
 

Hopefully Senate Election will show clear support for LNP

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, April 5, 2014,
Being in the Curtin Electorate, and living in Mosman Park, I nipped down to the charming art deco Memorial Hall to place my vote. Mossie Park is a real Liberal Party stronghold, given that it's generally a pretty well off and established suburb with lots of oldsters. (That said, there are chunks of it that are demographically the opposite of this, making it quite an intriguing locality.)

The atmosphere at the polling place was certainly very different to King St Newtown, where I voted a couple...
Continue reading ...
 

Celebrity shark whisperer Ocean Ramsey condemns cull

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, April 2, 2014,
The relationship between the cult of celebrity and the religion of Gaia-worship is an interesting one. To use a biological term, it seems to be symbiotic, or mutually beneficial.

Most often it's celebrities who use environmental causes to boost their profiles. But sometimes it works the other way around. Naturalists with a passion for the planet can become famous in their own right. Examples include Steve Irwin and David Attenborough. David Bellamy was also quite famous for a while until he h...

Continue reading ...
 

Shannen Doherty the latest celebrity to oppose the shark cull

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, April 1, 2014,
I always find it amusing how Hollywood celebrities are attracted to green-left causes. Their motives are so transparent. They clearly have no sincere belief in them. They are just trying to latch on to the feel-good factor, gain some extra publicity and thereby bolster their careers.

Perhaps more amusing is how the green-left activists themselves are so enamoured of these vain airheads. They fawn over them like schoolgirls over Justin Bieber.

 So odd. Aren't these brave crusaders for nature and...
Continue reading ...
 

Cheap spicy meals in the Perth CBD

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, March 22, 2014,
The cost of eating out in Perth can be pretty extreme. In recent years there have been a few media reports about this unfortunate aspect of living here.

However there are a still few places you can get a good tasty feed for a bargain place. One of them is well established. That's Govinda's in Northbridge. They sell delicious curries in the weekday evenings for only five bucks. 

Another place that is less well known is East West Cuisine in Raine Square. This new complex is right in the heart of ...
Continue reading ...
 

Pedestrian sign accident on Stirling Highway in Mosman Park

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, March 21, 2014,
I live in Mosman Park, and often head down to the Subway not far from the train station there. Along that stretch of the Stirling Highway the road is too narrow. So is the footpath, especially right near the station itself. Walking along it always feels a bit fraught, particularly at rush hour. There's a hell of a lot of traffic thundering through there on the way to Fremantle and back.

About a hundred metres form the station there's a busy petrol station where people enter at speed from the h...
Continue reading ...
 

Kelly Slater's silly anti-shark cull statement

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, March 18, 2014,
The irrationality of those who are against the shark cull is quite something. Sure, it's not that surprising coming from hard core greenies. They live in a world of emotionalism, after all. But every now and then you hear about deranged utterances from people you thought would know better. 

Take Kelly Slater, for example. The world champion surfer has actually gone on record saying that he'd be honoured to be eaten by a noah.

That's not just a case of jumping the shark. That's humping it as wel...
Continue reading ...
 

Russell Woolf, Verity James to save our (their?) ABC

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, March 15, 2014,
West Aussies are preparing to go back to the polls for the Senate by-election in April. There are several micro-parties running in a bit of a mini-repeat of what happened federally several months ago. But they're not as colourful as that last crowd, which was memorably equated with the bar scene from Star Wars

One of them is a one-issue party headed by former ABC stalwarts Russell Woolf and Verity James. They have formed the Save Our ABC party. 

Hmmm. What do they mean by our ABC? Being the r...
Continue reading ...
 

Racist abuse of Nic Naitanui on Twitter reveals PC double standard

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, March 15, 2014,
When I first heard about high profile West Aussie footballer Nic Naitanui copping racial abuse on Twitter I assumed it was at the hands of an Anglo. But it seems that the alleged perpetrator was of Vietnamese descent since his surname is Nguyen.

Just goes to show that racism is not always whites abusing non-whites. In this case the local Equal Opportunity Commissioner is condemning the abuse. But I wonder if this would be the case if the victim were white, in particular a white straight male. ...

Continue reading ...
 

Is "Emperor" Colin Barnett the Jeff Kennett of WA?

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, February 28, 2014,
Colin Barnett certainly dominates politics in this state. No matter how hard his Labor opponents try, they just can't seem to land a punch on him. Desperate to turn voters against him, they constantly repeat this line that he's arrogant and out of touch. I don't think this is a majority view, nor will it ever be. Still, it is certainly proliferating. 

And I think it was one of the main reasons recent anti-shark-cull protests were so crowded. A substantial proportion of the crowd were not full-...
Continue reading ...
 

WA's green intensity and the nature of the state

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, February 24, 2014,
I have been thinking about the ferocity of the anti-shark cull campaign here in the west. I keep wondering why it is so intense. Sure, people get het up about these things all over the globe, but generally not to the extent we've seen here recently

For example, there have been drum lines and shark nets in Queensland and NSW for decades. Yet they have caused little controversy. There were even people demonstrating about the West Aussie measures in those states. Makes you wonder why they didn'...
Continue reading ...
 

Steven Sealberg confirms our desire to see animals as people

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, February 23, 2014,
The older I get the weirder I think people are. One aspect of human nature that I'm particularly intrigued by is how we relate to animals. We herd, hunt, kill and eat them and use the remains of their bodies to make commodities such as clothing and fertilizer. Yet we befriend them as well. And we can even look up to them.

While some mammals such as dolphins, whales, and anthropoid apes are highly intelligent most beasts are pretty thick, let's face it. As well as being dumber than humans, they...
Continue reading ...
 

WA men earning more than women neither surprising nor sexist

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, February 22, 2014,
Feminists will no doubt be unhappy about the latest wage related stats for workers here in WA. On average, men earn a huge $400 per week more than their female counterparts. While left-wing social engineers will see this as a great injustice and be motivated to redouble their efforts to see equality of outcome, not just opportunity, most other women (and men) won't mind a bit. 

While some wage disparity between the genders is unfair and sexist, it's clearly not the case here. The main contribu...
Continue reading ...
 

Memo to greenies: sharks are not the new dolphins

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, February 21, 2014,
When it comes to demonizing humanity and idealizing nature, greenies routinely go to extreme and shameless lengths. Recently, for example, they said that a dolphin was killed in the shark cull. Turned out there was no truth to this claim.

As well as being typical of how shark huggers are so fast and loose with the truth this assertion brought to mind one of their wider aims. That is to convince the wider public that these gruesome carnivorous fish are as deserving of respect and affection as ...
Continue reading ...
 

Carmen Lawrence leads predictable calls for female Governor

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, February 16, 2014,
I'm sure you've been wondering whatever happened to Carmen Lawrence. Well, she did what many feminist politicians do after their disastrous reigns. She retreated to the halls of quackademe.

It's a well worn path, this. Natasha Stott-Despoja did it. Same with Julia Gillard. And what has Professor Lawrence been doing there in her ivory tower at UWA? Well, as well as making other po-faced PC pronouncements she's been calling for more feminists to be installed in positions of power, of course! 

Her...
Continue reading ...
 

Colin Barnett believes shark cull has public support

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, February 13, 2014,
Considering the level of outrage about the policy of deploying drum lines and killing big sharks, you may be wondering why the WA State Government is going ahead with it.

I think that there are two reasons for this. Firstly, they are pretty sure that despite the noise created by the anti-cull protesters and their fellow travellers in the media, most West Aussies are quietly in support of this approach. Premier Colin Barnett said as much during a live blog session earlier today.

I doubt this is ...
Continue reading ...
 

Media focus on drum lines as shark debate intensifies

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, February 12, 2014,
It's amazing to watch how the shark wars are covered by the media here in Western Australia. People are intensely focused on this subject -- not least because they're worried that the next time they go for a swim at one of our beautiful beaches they might get bitten in half by a bloody great white pointer!

They're also forming into two polarized political groups. There are those strongly against what they feel is the brutal murder of these deeply misunderstood creatures. Or, more likely, they'...
Continue reading ...
 

Animal Justice Party's Katrina Love speaks at shark protest

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, February 6, 2014,
As I mentioned in a previous post, there were some truly silly speakers at the Cottesloe protest against the "shark cull" on February 1. Katrina Love of the Animal Justice Party was one of them. I've included a video of her speech below for your amusement.

Now, if your average garden-variety greenie is out where the buses don't go then animal rights activists are well and truly off the beaten track. (Well, metaphorically speaking that is. It's one of the ironies of their movement that the more...
Continue reading ...
 

Anti-shark cull protest at Cottesloe had a surreal atmosphere

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, February 1, 2014,
Having been an avid surfer in my youth, when the sport was a lot safer than it is now, I've taken a keen interest in how the local shark wars are progressing. So I went down to Cottesloe Beach earlier today to watch the latest protest against the so-called cull and get some video footage of it. 

And isn't it interesting that the term "cull" is the default description -- even for those who are for the State Government's mitigation strategy. In my opinion it shouldn't even be defined as a cull. ...
Continue reading ...
 

Protest placards prove Perth is shark raving mad!

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, January 5, 2014,
One of the most fascinating aspects of green-tinged, left-wing demonstrations is what's written on the placards. The slogans often give a telling insight into the state of mind of many of the participants. Read them closely and you'll realize just how nutty, retarded, and sometimes flat out scary many of those attending actually are. 

Yesterday's rally at Cottesloe in support of white pointers, tiger sharks and sundry marine man eaters was no exception. There were silly signs aplenty. You can ...
Continue reading ...
 

Large crowd at Cottesloe anti-shark cull rally worries me

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, January 4, 2014,
In these days of social media mania, "slacktivism" is rife. There are countless people all over the globe who think they are changing the world for the better simply by pressing a like button on Facebook. Routinely, many more people pledge online to attend upcoming demos than actually rock up on the day. 

Frankly, I thought this was going to happen with this rally to oppose the State Government's plans to kill sharks deemed a threat to human life. See, six thousand people had said they would s...
Continue reading ...
 

2013's top news stories suggest "Dullsville" tag still relevant

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, December 17, 2013,
Several years ago there was a front page story in the West Australian that caused a great deal of consternation here. The headline read "Dullsville" and as far as I can recall it described how this was the term used to describe Perth in a foreign travel publication. It then asked readers if the tag (which had long been used locally anyway) was still justified.

This story became a hot topic of conversation and spawned many an outraged call to local talk-back stations. How could anyone say that ...
Continue reading ...
 

Shark-huggers up the ante in stoush over "cull"

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, December 13, 2013,
A coupla days ago one of the marine greenies who had vowed to protect sharks hinted at extreme action against fisherman hired to take out threatening noahs. Now the threats have been clarified. They are both funny and alarming, and reveal just how silly the green movement has become.

So enamoured with their toothy brethren are these dangerously naive numpties that they will now intentionally get in the way of professional shark-hunters in the manner of the harpoon dodging anti-whale crowd.

Sha...
Continue reading ...
 

Christmas-themed theft at Tuart Hill post office

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, December 11, 2013,
As I mentioned in a previous post, Christmas here in Perth always seems odd. We are bombarded with all this northern hemisphere winter imagery at the hottest time of the year. And a recent local event adds sinister absurdity to the general incongruity.

See, a bloke dressed as Santa Claus robbed the post office on Wanneroo Rd in Tuart Hill. It lends itself to humour, but it must have been anything but funny for the staff involved.

And I'm sure the cops who nabbed the alleged perpetrator weren'...
Continue reading ...
 

Shark-huggers react predictably to "kill zone" strategy

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, December 10, 2013,
I'm really glad that the WA Government has finally decided to do something about the threat posed by sharks. As this article makes clear the proposed "kill zone" strategy is nowhere near a cull. It's actually a targeted approach.

Quite frankly I would have been much happier with a cull -- preferably one involving dynamite. But you can't have everything. The Government was under immense pressure to make a compromise and has done so. 

Well, good to know they are doing something proactive. Obvious...
Continue reading ...
 

Dome cafes have reliable free wifi

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, December 10, 2013,
I get around Perth a lot, and there's nothing I like more than sitting in a nice cafe, logging onto the internet and updating my blogs, engaging on social media, or just reading the news. I do have a good wireless internet subscription (it's with Beagle Internet and I can recommend them without reservation). But since so many cafes offer free wifi now I figure I might as well use theirs from time to time. 

And now we're even more spoiled in this regard with the recent introduction of free wifi...
Continue reading ...
 

Loneliness in Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, November 4, 2013,
I noticed this article about how a recent study has found that a third of people in this city feel lonely. It seems that lack of time is a big factor.

I don't have the hard data, of course. But I suspect that the number of people here feeling this way is substantially higher than several years ago.

I don't feel lonely as such. But I certainly feel I have less time to devote to traditional social activities. That's partly to do with where my own life is heading, and would be the case wherever I ...
Continue reading ...
 

Aurelio Costarella and the lure of Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, October 19, 2013,
I noticed a profile of well known local fashion designer Aurelio Costarella in this weekend's West Australian. It was designed to complement an upcoming exhibition of his work called Aurelio Costarella: A 30 Year Retrospective.

I usually ignore this type of article, but I read this one right through. See, I actually went to Mt Lawley High School with Aurelio  -- or Ray as we called him at the time. I didn't know him well. But he was in a few of my classes.

It doesn't surprise me that he's been...
Continue reading ...
 

Two Hoots campaign addresses rudeness on public transport

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, October 9, 2013,
I do a lot of travelling on public transport. And I've seen quite a bit of antisocial behaviour on buses and trains. The main thing that really annoys me is people playing their iPods really loudly. But there are other things that can be infuriating like people slouching all over the place and taking up lots of space, or plonking their bags on seats and not moving them for people who want to sit down (but who are too meek to ask). It's amazing what you see sometimes.

Clearly a lot of other peo...
Continue reading ...
 

Signs advertising cheap coffee popping up around the city

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, October 5, 2013,
As everyone here knows, Perth is not a great place if you love your coffee. That's not to say that it's bad. it's just hugely expensive, that's all. And there have been several media reports about this unfortunate situation.

Clearly many people are frustrated about this. And some of the more alert cafe owners have seen an opportunity. By offering java for a reasonable price they can attract a lot of new customers.

An increasing number of them are doing this, as evidenced by signs promoting ch...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth has fulfilled its reputation for windiness lately

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, September 25, 2013,
Having lived for several years in other Aussie capital cities -- Sydney most recently -- I often think about how Perth differs from them. Windiness is certainly one of the major points of difference. Perth is easily the windiest city in Australia, and is reputed to rank number 3 globally for this factor.

And that's been very obvious lately. We've had several wet, wild and windy days lately. It's been so bad, my pilot light for the gas heater has been blown out once again. (The first time this...
Continue reading ...
 

Drunkenness and violence in Northbridge

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, September 23, 2013,
Northbridge is the Kings Cross of Perth. It's the nightlife centre for the city. So not surprisingly there are regular reports of drunken violence on Friday and Saturday nights. And it's long been that way. 

But in recent years the intensity and frequency of these events has gone up quite a bit. It seems that every few weeks you hear about some savage beating, knife attack or glassing. And there's even been the odd fatality.

And you don't even have to go in there on a weekend evening to see suc...
Continue reading ...
 

Cleanliness of Perth trains reveals city's wider culture

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, September 9, 2013,
I'm not surprised that a recent test has found that Perth trains are actually cleaner than the average kitchen. The general spotlessness inside the carriages is something I really noticed after spending several years in Sydney.

The trains are grotty as in that city. And it's not just because they are more crowded and scrubbed less thoroughly (and presumably less often) than the ones here. I think it also has much to do with the general attitude of the people there.

Basically, Sydneysiders come...
Continue reading ...
 

Voted at Council House polling place, St Georges Terrace

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, September 7, 2013,
I voted earlier today at Council House on St Georges Terrace in Perth. Back in my long lost youth, when election days came around, I used to see voting as a chore. Now, as I near the big 50 I really look forward to the the process. It reminds me of what a fantastic country we live in. We all have a say in who governs us. And sadly that's still not the case in many nations.

Not only do we have democracy but party representatives and citizens almost always treat each other with respect. While t...
Continue reading ...
 

The millipede train crash story and our enduring cultural cringe

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, September 6, 2013,
It's interesting that whenever something that's occurred locally gets reported in overseas media outlets, it often becomes news back here. The bizarre case of a minor train accident being linked to millipede infestation is the latest example. The fact that this odd event has been reported in Britain's Daily Mail is deemed newsworthy in itself! Now can, you imagine the inverse happening -- that is, a British newspaper gushing that similar events involving Pommie millipedes had been reported by...
Continue reading ...
 

Tuart Hill McDonalds is always busy, with a good atmosphere

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, September 2, 2013,
Lately, I've been heading regularly into the northern suburbs and have been dropping into the McDonalds on the corner of Morley Drive and Wanneroo Rd. It's surely one of the biggest and busiest Maccas restaurants in this city.

The reason I'm blogging about it is because I like the atmosphere in there. (I know that foodies and hipsters would be aghast to hear that, but so be it!). I hardly ever order a meal there, but I will always have a short black.

I'm not exactly a coffee afficionado but I ...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth City Library has good free wifi

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, August 30, 2013,
I have a wireless broadband connection with an excellent provider called Beagle. But sometimes I max out on my data allocation. That's happened this month, unfortunately. And like many people these days I feel very weird if I can't be online for at least couple of hours each day.

So today I decided to try the free wifi available at Perth's City Library. (Using it now.) It's actually really good. After logging on you get four hours of connection. It seems to be a very fast and reliable connect...
Continue reading ...
 

The tram carriage sculpture in McCallum Park

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, July 15, 2013,
If you drive over the causeway from Vic Park into the Perth CBD you have probably noticed a tram sculpture in McCallum Park, just near the Swan River. I was curious about this and had a closer look recently.







It appears to have been built in a location that was part of Perth's original tram network. The placard on the work itself says it's part of the Tram Stop Trail Project along Albany Highway and was installed in 2001. I think that other intended stages of this project haven't materialized ...
Continue reading ...
 

The Cygnet Cinema in Como

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, July 14, 2013,
I was in Como a couple of weeks ago on a cold, clear day and took some shots of the Cygnet Cinema. Not unlike the Luna Cinema in Oxford St Leederville it's a charming art deco building beloved by local film buffs.

I have only seen a few movies there but have mostly strong recollections of them because of the venue's distinctiveness. I saw Annie Hall there when I was in my teens and I remember going there with my dad and sister when I was much younger than that, probably only about eight or nin...
Continue reading ...
 

Teresa van Lieshout, like Clive Palmer, is not a team player!

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, July 3, 2013,
Not surprised that the Palmer United Party candidate for Fremantle Teresa van Lieshout has been dumped. She, like Clive Palmer himself, is not exactly a team player.

This was obvious right from the start. Almost immediately after being endorsed as his candidate she was publicly questioning the party's asylum seeker policy.

Ms van Lieshout, a teacher and author, told The Australian that Mr Palmer was entitled to his ideas but she thought asylum boats should be stopped and taken directly to Chris...
Continue reading ...
 

Dead possum near cross on Stirling Highway Mosman Park

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, July 3, 2013,
Stirling Highway narrows considerably as it goes through the suburb of Mosman Park, making that stretch quite dangerous for motorists. It's also risky for pedestrians because not only is there a high concentration of vehicles whizzing past but the footpaths are very narrow as well.

There's a very real reminder of the severity of this danger in the form of a makeshift cross on the corner of Glyde St, presumably left to mark the site of a roadside fatality.



About a week ago a dead possum appeared...
Continue reading ...
 

MacTiernan's concrete city scenario reveals her green delusions

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, June 25, 2013,
Mayor of the City of Vincent Alannah MacTiernan is angered by WA's new residential housing codes. The changes are minor:

WA's new residential housing codes, to come into effect on August 2, reduce the minimum open space requirement for multi-dwelling R50 and R60 developments from 45 per cent to 40 per cent.

But of course this is all too much for Ms MacTiernan. She says the change will contribute to a heat island effect. Wouldn't be surprised if she invokes climate change as well ...

I think mos...
Continue reading ...
 

6PR's Jason Jordan's apology to Charlotte Dawson

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, June 20, 2013,
Hot on the heels of the Howard Sattler gay slur scandal comes another, much smaller kerfuffle involving another 6PR broadcaster. Jason Jordan has had to apologize over old tweets in which he implied that TV personality Charlotte Dawson faked a suicide attempt to gain more publicity.

Frankly I think he was probably quite close to the truth with his initial observation. Of course she was deeply upset by all that trolling. But while her suicide attempt may have been genuine it does seem to have b...
Continue reading ...
 

Howard Sattler's sacking by Fairfax shows fickleness of media

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, June 16, 2013,
The case of Howard Sattler being sacked over his tasteless questions to the Prime Minister says much about the Perth media scene as well as the machinations of power in general.

Here's a guy who is paid big bucks to be provocative, aggressive and offensive. That's what the listeners find compelling, after all. Day in, day out for years on end he's been annoying the great and the good of Perth and his employers have been very pleased with him.

He clearly finds the combative approach invigorati...
Continue reading ...
 

Shock jock Howard Sattler and Perth radio culture

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, June 14, 2013,
This scandal over Howard Sattler's blunt and stupid questioning of the PM has got me thinking about Perth radio culture as compared to Sydney's.

Sattler is a local "shock jock" that PC types love to hate. But he really is the only one here. Pretty much every other broadcaster is drearily right-on. (I suppose Paul Murray might fall into this category. But from what I've heard he's hardly provocative.)

Being a bit of a right-wing death beast myself, I'm a supporter of the politically incorrect s...
Continue reading ...
 

Shock: University of Notre Dame hostile to gay marriage activism!

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, June 10, 2013,
Two things that always astonish me about the more zealous proponents of politically correct leftism are their childlike naivete and sheer brazen gall. It's a very odd combination. But these are very strange people.

The little ruckus about the trendy lefty cause of gay marriage meeting a hostile reception at Notre Dame Uni is a good illustration of this:

Student Alex Kemp claims the university does not allow students to actively advocate for gay marriage on campus and refuses to recognise groups...
Continue reading ...
 

The CEO Sleepout in Perth seems meaningless to me

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, May 28, 2013,
The St Vincent de Paul Society's CEO Sleepout will be held again in the near future. I think it's great that it raises money for the homeless. But apart from that it seems to be an exercize in meaningless symbolism.

The local luminaries who take part are clearly trying to show that they care about the have-nots by treading "in their shoes". But surely spending one night in a cricket ground is nothing compared to months (if not years) of hunger, unemployment, loneliness and homelessness.

The hom...
Continue reading ...
 

Area near Dixon Park, Hamilton Hill seems semi-rural

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, May 21, 2013,
One thing I really like about Perth is how spread out it is. Even though it's much more densely populated than in years gone by, there's still a lot of empty space. And pretty much every suburb contains a nice big park or three. There are quite a few lakes and swamps around the place, too. You can even find patches of land that are reminiscent of the country between suburbs that are quite close to the CBD and Fremantle.

The area near Dixon Park in Hamilton Hill is an example of this. It's just...
Continue reading ...
 

Ben Wyatt, Dennis Jensen and Labor's cultural struggle

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, April 22, 2013,
Ben Wyatt has weighed in on Dennis Jensen's recent controversial comments on Twitter:

WA opposition spokesman for Aboriginal affairs Ben Wyatt said Mr Jensen had made a stale, facile and low-grade contribution to the debate, which had moved on to how much was being spent on indigenous people in hospitals and prisons.

Native title agreements had for many years focused on economic development and education outcomes, he said.

"He might want to do some research and reading to catch up,'' Mr Wyatt sa...

Continue reading ...
 

UWA Prosh racism row reveals PC double standard

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, April 19, 2013,
Still on the subject of racism: The editors of UWA's annual satirical "Prosh" newspaper are in hot water over their use of offensive racial stereotypes in this year's edition.

When I first read this headline I expected that the offending article might have been trying to mock racism itself by representing it somehow and that perpetually outraged types -- oblivious to the tone -- mistakenly believed it was endorsing what it was ridiculing. But if you look at the piece in question you'll see th...
Continue reading ...
 

Dennis Jensen falsely accused of racism on Twitter

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, April 18, 2013,
Dennis Jensen, the member for Tangney, is the latest politician to be embroiled in a Twitter storm. He was involved in some snarkiness on the subject of colonialism:

The Tangney MHR told TheKooriWoman to “get over” colonialism, saying “every country in the world has been successfully invaded in the past!” in a tweet yesterday.

“Do I snap my fingers and forget 213 years of oppression Mr Jensen?,” she replied.

His comeback was: “So you have personally lived 213 years? Work out ways t...

Continue reading ...
 

The Crime Factory and Cowboys in Uniform

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, April 15, 2013,
On the weekend I read a report about a controversial book about the WA Police Force. It seems that a former serving constable by the name of Ian Patton has been named by the press as the writer of this book. But he vehemently denies this.

My first assumption upon reading the headline was that the book in question was The Crime Factory, which I posted about earlier. But this book's title is actually Cowboys in Uniform. It appears possible that they are entirely separate works.

If this is the cas...
Continue reading ...
 

Hoyts Carousel cinema's mice infestation a social media disaster

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, April 2, 2013,
Every business needs to be on social media these days. It's obviously a great way to lift a company's profile in the marketplace and engage with consumers. But it can be a double edged sword. Pretty much every week there's another story about how some unfortunate event has occurred at some business or other, the news of which has gone viral on Facebook and Twitter.

There have been several local examples, including the clash between local real estate identity Paul Tonich and the Wild Fig Cafe. ...
Continue reading ...
 

Girls fighting in the Murray St Mall a sad sign of the times

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, March 15, 2013,
Still on the subject of girls behaving badly: Recently there was a vicious fight between girls in the Murray St Mall that was captured on video and uploaded to YouTube.

Obviously, such events are not entirely new. Kids can certainly be bloodlusting little brutes! I remember when I was at Mt Lawley High School back in the late seventies and early eighties. Occasionally, after school, there were fights at what we called “Smelly Lake”.

These were like theatrical attractions. Protagonists woul...
Continue reading ...
 

Drunk girls at McDonalds video has certainly touched a nerve

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, March 15, 2013,
Looking at my stats, I have noticed that a lot of visitors are coming via searches related to that video of the man berating those drunk girls at McDonalds.

I think a lot of people want to find out who the protagonists actually were and what their background is. Unfortunately I have no details about this. I'm pretty sure the bloke was interviewed on tele a couple of days ago. And I read somewhere that the girls were actually uni students who were mortified about what happened. I'm sure that ev...
Continue reading ...
 

Scarborough becoming increasingly like Bondi

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, March 13, 2013,
I recently found this page about how Scarborough Beach has been seen as our own version of Bondi Beach since as far back as 1939. Of course in those days the comparison mainly related to how popular these two surf beaches were with families during summer.

Nowadays, they have more in common, such as the population density of both suburbs. Needless to say Bondi is the more crowded suburb of the two by far. There are countless units right near the water. Most have been there for decades, and man...
Continue reading ...
 

Man berates drunk girls at Innaloo McDonalds

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, March 12, 2013,
Still on the subject of Innaloo: The McDonalds there was the scene of an altercation filmed on a mobile phone that was ultimately reported internationally. Basically some drunk girls were being antisocial and throwing their food around. One older bloke was disgusted, got up and confronted them.

This event, as well as many I've seen with my own eyes, shows just how much society has changed in the last several decades. Sure, there were always drunken, antisocial idiots. But there are certainly ...
Continue reading ...
 

Galahs and corellas seen feeding at Innaloo

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, March 11, 2013,
Had to go out to Innaloo several times recently. While out there one sunny afternoon last week I spotted a flock of white birds foraging for food. Wasn't sure what species they were at the time but have subsequently learned that they were corellas of some sort. They look most likely to be long-billed corellas -- although that seems a bit odd because they seem confined to the eastern states. Maybe they were on holiday?





Anyway I returned to that area a day or two later and saw another flock of b...

Continue reading ...
 

Colin Barnett, Mark McGowan, Troy Buswell and Julia Gillard

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, March 5, 2013,
Colin Barnett is pretty much a dead cert to retain his job as Premier of Western Australia on March 9. He's been at the helm of a booming state for a while now and he's been a competent and confident leader. Of course state issues are different to federal ones but they do influence each other. And the Libs are certainly capitalizing on the dysfunction in Canberra. I've seen at least one ad that reminds West Aussies about what a mess the current Australian Government is in. This will be highly...
Continue reading ...
 

West Australians for Shark Conservation indoctrinating children

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, February 17, 2013,
Hot on the heels of the barmy Peaceful Paddle (Against Shark Culling) comes another dippy deep green campaign of "attitudinal reconstruction". The group West Australians for Shark Conservation is now offering school classes teaching kids that sharks aren't scary at all. No, they're actually kind and cuddly cweatures just like weally big fwuffy-eared bunny wabbits!

That's so typical of greenies' "get 'em while they're young" philosophy, isn't it? And highly ironic given that while they want ...
Continue reading ...
 

Labor's Metronet and the Libs' light rail plans are ideologically distinct

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, February 16, 2013,
People like to say that there is very little difference between the Labor and Liberal parties on many major issues, particularly when it comes to state government. I think that's long been quite true.

However in recent years the two parties have started to diverge and become ideologically more distinct. Federally, Labor has become much more of a high tax, high spending government. It keeps coming up with grand projects for the people but so often they come a cropper through incompetent managem...
Continue reading ...
 

Peaceful Paddle at Leighton was incoherent and half-hearted

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, February 11, 2013,
I'm glad that no-one was eaten by a shark during the Peaceful Paddle on the weekend. (What a disaster that would have been, eh!) But I still think the whole exercize was pretty silly. While the participants who showed up are probably congratulating themselves for successfully making a political point, I think most Perth people who'd heard of the event would be shaking their heads in bemusement at its dippy incoherence.

Firstly, the original paddle was supposed to be from Cottesloe to Scarboro...
Continue reading ...
 

Thoughts on the Peaceful Paddle (Against Shark Culling)

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, January 21, 2013,
Clearly many Perth people are very anxious about the possibility of shark attacks these days. And in an attempt to allay their fears, a couple of local surfers called Rob Mayberry and Cam Avery have created a community event to be held on Sunday, February 10. They, along with anyone who wishes to join them will paddle from Cottesloe to Scarborough. The event is called the Peaceful Paddle (Against Shark Culling).

While I'm sure their intentions are sincere, I can't help being skeptical myself....
Continue reading ...
 

Bizarre crash on Stirling Highway, Mosman Park

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, January 16, 2013,
It's around 1 a.m. on Thursday morning. Close to midnight I was watching TV in my Mosman Park flat and I heard this loud screeching sound followed by a bang that came from the direction of Stirling Highway. Clearly a car had lost contol near the train station and hit an oncoming car or a wall.

I thought it best to have a look because if it was a serious crash and someone was hurt I may have been able to help somehow. It turned out not to be serious, thankfully. But it easily could have been.

B...
Continue reading ...
 

Oxford St Leederville is a cafe strip close to the city

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, January 16, 2013,
Perth has several entertainment districts. The main one is Northbridge. Then there's Subiaco. There are also quite a few cafes, restaurans and pubs on Albany Highway in Victoria Park, although they're quite spread out.

Aside from Northbridge, the closest to the CBD is Oxford St Leederville. The shot below (taken from the overpass leading from Oxford St to the Leederville train station) gives an idea of its proximity to the CBD.



The actual cafe strip in question is quite short. But it's a pleas...
Continue reading ...
 

Why the Rottnest severed head discovery seems so surreal

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, January 14, 2013,
You'll no doubt have heard about this severed head being found on Rottnest Island. Now, such a discovery would be bizarre and horrific pretty much anywhere -- except in a morgue, of course. But with Rottnest being such a quiet, relaxed, family-oriented environment, it is even more extreme.

The dim-witted nature of some of the reporting adds to the strange atmosphere. One article, for example, contains a classic line:

Given the head was found wrapped in plastic, a shark attack has been ruled out...
Continue reading ...
 

Colin Barnett's shark tower vs Mark McGowan's ocean pools

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, January 6, 2013,
Premier Colin Barnett has recently confirmed that a shark tower will be built at Cottesloe Beach. This is his own electorate, so it's not surprising that many people claim the decision is a case of cynical pork barreling, an accusation he denies:

"Yes it is my electorate and as the Member for Cottesloe I'm delighted the government is going to help the club build a much needed patrol tower and I think beach users at Cottesloe will appreciate that," he said.

"Most of the other surf clubs do have ...

Continue reading ...
 

Perth shark sightings a frighteningly common occurrence

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, December 31, 2012,
The shark problem here seems to be growing all the time. While there haven't been any attacks for quite a while, there have been sightings galore. Pretty much every day now there are reports of beaches being closed -- and not just in and near Perth. They're occurring at many places along the West Australian coast.

Take this incident at Twilight Beach in Esperance, in which a bunch of people were taken to safety by boat after a big noah was seen near the rock they had swum to.

And it's not just...
Continue reading ...
 

Thoughts on Perth Arena's Totem sculpture

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, December 21, 2012,
While I think that the Perth Arena itself is quite an impressive building I can't say I'm much of a fan of the robotic sculpture nearby known as "Totem".

While it is composed of tiles in much the same way as the building itself it doesn't seem to be an organic part of the whole structure. It's just sort of plonked there outside. I don't like that particular shade of yellow, either. While it does stand out against the blue and grey of the main structure the effect is not aesthetically pleasing....
Continue reading ...
 

Perth Arena's striking blue entrance

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, December 20, 2012,
As it was being built, the Perth Arena copped a lot of flack, even being derided as Perth's ugliest building. But now that it's finished I think a lot of people will be reassessing their opinion of it.

Sure, it's not to everyone's taste. But it's certainly a visually distinctive structure that leaves a mark on you.

The thing I find most striking about it is the deep blue colouring of the entrance and wall above it. It's an amazingly powerful hue created by the artist Yves Klein.

I suspect its...
Continue reading ...
 

The Buswell-Carles split and his defamation lawsuit

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, December 11, 2012,
Politics is a dirty, brutal business. Frankly I just don't understand how people can cope with the stress of it when it's being conducted routinely. So when the bitter breakdown of a romantic relationship is thrown into the mix for all the world to see the stress experienced by those involved must be extreme. And that's exactly what's happened in the case of Troy Buswell and Adele Carles.

The Liberal politician has issued a writ against Carles for claiming that he is an alcoholic with psychol...
Continue reading ...
 

The Crime Factory and WA police culture

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, December 10, 2012,
A former cop has written a book highly critical of the culture of the Western Australian police force. In it, he describes it as sexist, racist and violent. It's called The Crime Factory, and he's penned it under the pseudonym "Officer A".

It's common for disgruntled former employees to make such accusations. And quite often they exaggerate their experiences. Political correctness is fashionable these days, and people have become so attuned to the possibility of sexism, racism, homophobia, etc...
Continue reading ...
 

Claremont Hotel and Claremont Quarter

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, December 7, 2012,
Another location where you can see a pronounced recent transformation in Perth is in Bayview Terrace, Claremont. Right on the corner, across from the train station is the Claremont Hotel. It's not exactly dilapidated, but it's certainly showing its age. This impression is exaggerated by the fact that there's a massive shopping complex right next to it called Claremont Quarter.





Continue reading ...
 

The old Royal George Hotel in East Fremantle

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, December 7, 2012,
If you're anywhere near the intersection of Canning and Stirling Highways you can see an isolated and stately old building surrounded by vegetation called the Royal George Hotel. In its style and appearance it's quite similar to the Brass Monkey Hotel in Northbridge.

It hasn't been used as a hotel for a long time, however. It's most recent function was as an arts and community centre, although I'm not sure if it's still being utilized as such. I think it might currently be empty and unused. It...
Continue reading ...
 

The red Dingo Flour sign and Alan Bond

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, December 5, 2012,
Pretty much everyone who lives in Perth has either seen, or at least knows about, the big Dingo Flour sign on the side of an old mill on Stirling Highway, North Fremantle. They are also certain to have heard that it was supposed to have been painted by Alan Bond when he was a lowly signwriter in his youth.

That particular story has been around for as long as I can remember. I recall it being cited on a few occasions when going past it as a child and even as a teenager. I always thought that it...
Continue reading ...
 

Equus Apartments loom over Barrack and Hay Sts

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, December 5, 2012,
Numerous big luxury apartment blocks have been built in Perth over the last several years. Perhaps the most impressive and well located of these are the Equus Apartments at 580 Hay St.

The main entrance is right opposite the Perth Town Hall. I recall that exact location very well, because it was where Cinema City used to be. That was built in the late seventies as I recall and there was a lot of excitement about it at the time. I saw dozens of movies there over the years. (I think the last one...
Continue reading ...
 

Regal Theatre and Subiaco Hotel

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, December 4, 2012,
There are numerous locations in Perth where you can see a strong contrast between the old and the new. The corner of Rokeby Road and Hay St in Subiaco is one of these.

There are two lovely old buildings at that intersection, the Subiaco Hotel and the Regal Theatre. The former was built around 1904, in the Art Nouveau style. The latter is an Art Deco building constructed in the mid to late 1930s. Just opposite both of them is the garish home of radio station Nova 93.7. Not sure when that was bu...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth train and bus commuters have justified safety fears

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, November 23, 2012,
Not only have Perth trains become increasingly crowded in the last few years, but a high proportion of commuters feel unsafe on them, particularly at night.

The number of passengers who felt unsafe at night jumped from 23 to 28 per cent - including nearly half of all Armadale patrons interviewed and nearly one-third of all Midland patrons.

Four in five commuters identified drunks and drug users as the biggest safety threat at night.


This survey measured commuters' perception of risk, so it was ...
Continue reading ...
 

Christmas tree in Murray St Mall

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, November 20, 2012,
I was in the CBD yesterday and was suprised to see a huge Christmas tree in the Murray St Mall. It gave me a shock because I didn't realize that we were quite that close to the silly season ...

I noticed that there were people throwing multi-coloured confetti around. I didn't know where it had come from but was left in no doubt soon after when machines at various positions around the tree started blowing it onto the crowd. The people clearly enjoyed the spectacle and many recorded it on their ...
Continue reading ...
 

Hillary Clinton at the Hyatt Regency Perth for AUSMIN

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, November 14, 2012,
Late yesterday afternoon I was on the bus going from Victoria Park to Perth. It had just crossed the Causeway and was on Adelaide Terrace approaching Plain St when traffic slowed right down. I thought there'd been an accident. But the driver told me it was something to do with Hillary Clinton's visit.

I got out at the stop and walked to the corner where the Hyatt Regency is. There were heaps of policemen around, some on motorbikes. The traffic was halted at that particular intersection. And th...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth's train lines better policed and managed than Sydney's

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, November 8, 2012,
I live in Mosman Park now, and often go into the city by train. When heading back I've noticed that after Claremont Station the transit cops pretty much always check the passengers' tickets and SmartRiders. Every now and then you see some poor bugger get nabbed for not having a valid ticket and thereby copping a fine.

Cynics would no doubt argue that the reason they're so assiduous about this is because the Government wants to raise revenue. And I think they'd have a point.

But there's also a ...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth Arena construction, Entertainment Centre demolition inspire art exhibition

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, November 5, 2012,
When starting this blog I kept returning to the Perth Entertainment Centre as it was being demolished. Similarly, I've posted about the Perth Arena. I did this because I felt that the destruction of the former coinciding with the construction of the latter was a good metaphor for how Perth was changing. (I even had a photo of each project on this site's main page for a while, but took them down because they didn't seem to sit right next to the text.)

It seems I'm not the only one who felt this...
Continue reading ...
 

Massive rainbow over Lake Monger

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, October 25, 2012,
A few weeks ago I was walking through Wembley. It was a pretty miserable day with grey skies and patchy light rain. When I crossed Harborne St I noticed a huge rainbow.

I headed towards Lake Monger so I could see it more clearly. It stretched right over the lake, just containing the Perth skyline. I couldn't get the whole arc in one shot, but managed to take some that show different sections of it. They don't do it justice but still give you an idea of just how big and spectacular it was.







Continue reading ...
 

The dragonfly sculpture in Bayview Park, Mosman Park

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, October 24, 2012,
A few weeks ago I was wandering down towards the Swan River in Mosman Park when I came across a sculpture of a dragonfly. It was quite a striking creation in a picturesque setting.





From the plaque at its base I learned that it was comparatively new. Created by Ben Juniper, it was erected there in 2011.

But it seems that there's has been some controversy about it -- at least soon after it was placed there.

Some residents complained that Dragonfly, with an installed height of 5.7m and a wingspan...
Continue reading ...
 

The Brass Monkey Hotel in Northbridge is ornate and distinctive

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, October 23, 2012,
When I was living Sydney, I was struck by the sheer number of charming old pubs and hotels, many of them quite small and lovingly maintained. If you wandered through inner city suburbs like Paddington and Newtown you'd be sure to stumble upon several of them. This is hardly surprising, of course. The city is older and bigger than Perth.

That said, there are some great local establishments that rival those in Sydney. There are just far fewer of them, and they tend to be bigger, as a rule. One ...
Continue reading ...
 

Cambridge Forum Food Court has a great family atmosphere

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, October 19, 2012,
I've been dropping into the Cambridge International Food Court from time to time recently. And I've always been struck by how crowded it is -- even in the evenings. Most of the dining halls around the city are half empty most of the time, after all.

It's particularly good for families because there's a fenced area with a slide and other structures for the kids to play in. Also, there are several stalls that make some really good filling meals for little cost. You could easily feed a family of ...
Continue reading ...
 

Lake Jualbup, formerly Shenton Park Lake

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, October 8, 2012,
There are several pleasant little lakes in the Perth suburbs. One of these is Lake Jualbup in Shenton Park.

I have fond memories of it from my childhood. Friends of the family lived just nearby, in Onslow Road. And we would wander down there sometimes. It doesn't seem to have changed much since then.

Its future does seem in doubt, however, due to hugely varying water levels. There is a local campaign to ensure that it is permanently full of water.







I do recall seeing tortoises there. And they ar...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth fashion scene: interview with designer Donna Holmes (Donnah label)

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, September 27, 2012,
I'm constantly writing my own observations about Perth. But I'm keen to get different perspectives on living and working in this city from interesting, knowledgeable locals. In the first of what I intend to be many interviews Donna Holmes, who owns the Donnah fashion label, has kindly responded to my questions about the local industry:

Matt: I'm interested in what the Perth fashion scene is like. Is it comparatively friendly and supportive or highly competitive? How would you describe it?

Donn...
Continue reading ...
 

WA Government attacking shark problem proactively

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, September 27, 2012,
It's heartening to know that the State Government is introducing new measures to deal with the serious threat posed by sharks in West Australian waters.

Chief among the measures was $2 million to allow the Department of Fisheries to track, catch and kill white pointer sharks if they are deemed to be an imminent risk to public safety.

Of course an approach like this will annoy greenies. And a good thing too! They get their way so often that it's refreshing when their will is flouted for once.

And...
Continue reading ...
 

Out-of-control party legislation targets organizers

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, September 26, 2012,
Out of control parties are a scourge in this city. The Government has tabled new legislation to crack down on the problem. Part of it involves punishing the party holders if things get out of hand.

Under the proposed laws, a person who organises a gathering of 12 people - at which two people break the law - could face a year in jail or a $12,000 fine and an additional penalty of paying back the cost of police resources.

Not surprisingly the Civil Liberties Council of WA has deemed the laws ove...
Continue reading ...
 

Hyde Park Deli has changed little in forty years

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, September 23, 2012,
As I've mentioned previously on this blog there are many locations around Perth that have been so completely transformed in recent years that they bear little or no resemblance to what I remember from my childhood. But there are a few places and buildings that have hardly changed at all.

One of these is the little deli situated on William St, just opposite Hyde Park.



I used to wait at the stop on the edge of the park for the school bus out to Kingsley Montessori every morning for years, after ...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth's work culture is generally more relaxed than Sydney's

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, September 22, 2012,
Perth has long been known as a relaxed and friendly place that is "like a big country town". While things have certainly sped up a lot in recent years and that characterization is much less valid than it used to be, I think it still has a lot of truth to it.

There's so much space here and the weather is pleasant, so people tend to be generally less stressed than in bigger cities. Then there's the fact that while business is booming, there's not the same level of concentration and competition ...
Continue reading ...
 

68 Milligan St is a distinctive and memorable building

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, September 17, 2012,
Everyone in Perth will know the building located at 68 Milligan St. It's close to the heart of the CBD, and is right opposite where the old Perth Entertainment Centre used to be.

It's a low-slung, curved and oddly shaped building that looks as thought it was built fairly recently. But it's actually been there for a long while, at least 40 years I would say.

I'm certain of this because I can clearly remember when the top section housed a roller skating rink. I think it was a car park during the...
Continue reading ...
 

Ecstasy rating site's popularity here doesn't surprise me

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, September 12, 2012,
A website that rates the relative quality of different batches of ecstasy is proving to be very popular with users of the drug in this city. While the site's stated intention is to aid the process of harm minimization, medical authorities are appalled by it.

It doesn't surprise me that this site gets a lot of traffic from Perth. There are obviously a lot of users here. And they often turn to the internet to find drug related information.

I've learned this from the traffic stats to this site. ...
Continue reading ...
 

The Metropolitan Area Express will change the city's character

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, September 2, 2012,
There are always new infrastructure projects going on in this city. But I hadn't heard of the Metropolitan Area Express until now. This is a light rail project that has just received the go ahead.

The first stage will start at Polytechnic West (Balga Campus) and extend east-west through the city to the QEII Medical Centre, in Nedlands, and the Causeway.

One of the main reasons for such a project is to relieve traffic congestion, and reduce carbon emissions. That's an illustration of just how cr...
Continue reading ...
 

Memories of Neil Armstrong's visit to Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, August 28, 2012,
Reading the West Australian yesterday I noticed a little item about Neil Armstrong's visit to Perth back in October 1969 as part of his world tour.

That certainly took me back. I came here as a bub in 1967. And I do recall this event very clearly.

Not sure if I went as part of a school group (I was at Kingsley Montessori at the time, in the kindergarten there), or with my family. I think it was probably the former.

I don't recall seeing Armstrong at all. But I do have a very strong recollection...
Continue reading ...
 

ATM and drug lab explosions in Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, August 16, 2012,
A thought on the ATM explosions that have been occurring of late: Such events are happening with increasing frequency. They often occur in twos, sometimes within hours.

This is reminiscent of the ram raiding of pharmacies. In these smash and grab robberies, thieves steal as much cold and flu medication as possible for use in making meth, a drug that's having a really bad effect on many people in this city. (When I was living in Yokine, there was an occasion in which three of them were hit. The...
Continue reading ...
 

With great whites near Trigg Point more shark attacks are inevitable

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, August 7, 2012,
As everyone in Australia is more than well aware, there have been an awful lot of shark attacks off Western Australian beaches recently. There's been a lot of debate about what's actually causing the increase. One popular argument is that it's mainly because there are just so many more people in the water now than in the past. And more people means there's a greater chance of contact with ocean creatures.

I don't buy that one. As well the massive increase in the number of attacks, there is an ...
Continue reading ...
 

July has been extremely cold and dry

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, July 30, 2012,
Lately, it's been close to freezing many nights in a row. I've been thinking how unusual this is for Perth, trying to recall any time when it's been this cold for this long. But nothing comes to mind.

That's why the news that we're on track to have the coldest, driest July in history doesn't surprise me at all. It seems particularly odd when you consider all this hysteria about global warming.

Of course warmists will say that I'm confusing weather with climate. But then they are happy to point ...
Continue reading ...
 

Northern beachside suburbs a British hub

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, July 22, 2012,
It's well known that Perth has a lot of Poms! As Wikipedia states:

Perth's population is notable for the high proportion of British-born residents. At the 2006 Census, 142,424 British-born Perth residents were counted,[51] narrowly behind Sydney (145,261),[52] despite having just 35% of the overall population of Sydney.

And like other ethnic and cultural groups, those hailing from the British Isles tend to gravitate to the same suburbs. I'd long known that the southern centre of Rockin...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth and the "ping-pong Pom" phenomenon

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, July 16, 2012,
I read a recent article about a British couple's experience of Perth with interest. The Green family came here with dreams of a relaxed and idyllic life in a place far sunnier and more spacious than the United Kingdom. But ultimately they found it unsatisfying, and returned home after several years.

Many Brits have a similar experience. They are so numerous, in fact, that they even have their own collective label: "ping-pong Poms".

There are also many of their countrymen who feel little or no s...
Continue reading ...
 

The rising cost of coffee and dining out

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, July 9, 2012,
Cost of living is a big issue here in Perth. There seem to be many causes for the city's general expensiveness -- with the mining boom being often cited. The most obvious (and alarming) price rises have been in the housing and rental market along with utilities. But there is also much anxiety about the cost of other goods and services.

Dining out, for example, is getting increasingly pricey. I eat at restaurants rarely so haven't noticed this much. But I did catch up with some old school frien...
Continue reading ...
 

Increasingly crowded buses arriving late more often

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, July 6, 2012,
As a frequent user of public transport in Perth, the news that about a third of buses run late doesn't surprise me. Clearly this is due in major part to the fast increase in the number of people using public transport, which is something I've posted about previously.

Still, it's generally a very efficient system. Currently, around 71% of buses arrive on time (compared to 85% a year ago). I'm not sure of the figures in other Aussie cities but I suspect these would compare favourably with...
Continue reading ...
 

Brazen daylight attack in Fremantle

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, June 18, 2012,
Something I've posted about repeatedly on this blog is the alarming increase in the amount of violence that is committed in this city. Of course I've read or heard about it much more than I've actually witnessed it.

But I did observe a disturbing incident yesterday afternoon in Fremantle. At around 5 PM I started walking up Wray Avenue from South Terrace and I heard yelling from up the street. I saw some blokes beating up one guy near the Hampton Road intersection. He managed to escape and run...
Continue reading ...
 

Old Red Parrot building now houses Street Gallery

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, June 17, 2012,
Back in the mid eighties there was a very popular nightclub in Northbridge called the Red Parrot. It really was the place to be seen for quite some time.

I was only in my early twenties back then, so the whole concept of clubbing was alluring to me and I went a few times. One time, I vaguely recall there being a lot of excitement about the members of the band Duran Duran arriving after the show. I think I actually saw one of them slouched against the bar -- although of course it could have bee...
Continue reading ...
 

Old Steve's Hotel building dwarfed by new apartments

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, June 16, 2012,
Thirty years ago I was studying at the University of WA. Aside from the tavern on the campus grounds, one very popular pub was Steve's Nedlands Park Hotel, down near the water at the end of Broadway.

It seemed to me quite a grand and distinctive building that dominated the surrounding area, with a completely clear view to the Swan River.

Obviously a lot happens in several decades. But when I went there about 18 months ago I was still stunned to see how much that whole area had changed. The hote...
Continue reading ...
 

South Terrace cafes on a sunny Sunday afternoon

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, June 16, 2012,
Even though it's become a good deal more crowded than it used to be, Fremantle is still a very laid back place. And one of its most well known destinations is South Terrace. Along this short stretch of road there are many charming cafes, restaurants and pubs, as well as the iconic Fremantle Markets.

It's really buzzing on Friday and Saturday nights. But it can get pretty rowdy, with lots of young people hitting the bars, and often overdoing it.

The best time to go is during the day on a weeken...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth's Brookfield Place tower (formerly City Square)

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, June 12, 2012,
The big local construction project that has been getting the most publicity (and causing the most controversy!) recently is the Perth Arena. Perhaps second on the list would be the tower above Brookfield Place (originally called City Square).

This impressive structure is located on St Georges Terrace and looms over the Esplanade Busport.



The cranes in the above shot are gone now, and the building has been pretty much completed. The offices are gradually being filled by the major tenant BHP Bill...
Continue reading ...
 

Charming old shops in Hamilton Hill

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, June 12, 2012,
I do quite a bit of walking through the suburbs of Perth. There are very few streets that are the same as what I remember from when I was growing up. That's not to say that there are new buildings on every street -- although there are a hell of a lot of them. But even in long established suburbs, there always seems to be evidence of fairly recent refurbishment and extensions having been added, etc.

So I tend to have the sense that the "old Perth" has pretty much gone entirely. However, every n...
Continue reading ...
 

Flag and Whistle next to gleaming new apartments

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, June 8, 2012,
Still on the subject of Fremantle and how its obvious sense of history can jar with other aspects of the place: One very distinctive and highly visible old building is the Flag and Whistle Hotel in Beach Street.

This is very close to the railway line and quite near the station itself. You can see it clearly from the train as you travel in or out of Freo.

It's a beautifully ramshackle old pub. I'm not sure if it's currently being used as such. But it certainly was a few years ago because I went ...
Continue reading ...
 

Fremantle Town Hall houses psychic fair

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, June 8, 2012,
As anyone who's ever been to Fremantle knows very well, it's a charming old place. You can really feel the history there. The atmosphere is strongest in the town centre, where there are many old buildings that have been well preserved.

The other characteristic of Freo is that it's a haven of tolerance, and there are lots of greenies, hippies and New Agers living there. I find this quite incongruous because the age and history of the place evoke a strong, staid and Christian tradition.

Not so lo...
Continue reading ...
 

Bayview Terrace in Claremont is being upgraded

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, June 7, 2012,
As I've mentioned in previous posts, there's a lot of construction going on in this city. Obviously you tend to see it more in the CBD, where there are some big commercial projects going on. And there are quite a few apartment blocks and the like going up in newer and outlying areas.

But some of the older, more established suburbs have some big projects underway, too. There's the odd "facelift" occurring as well.

Take Bayview Terrace in Claremont. This is a pleasant retail and cafe strip in one...
Continue reading ...
 

Unfinished Oswal mansion is the exception that proves the rule

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, June 5, 2012,
With Western Australia continuing to enjoy the fruits of the resources boom there's still a lot of construction going on in Perth. If you go through an area that you haven't visited for a long while, you may well see the odd busy building site with lots of big beefy blokes in yellow safety jackets milling about. You pass by again a year later and lo and behold, there's a gleaming new apartment block there!

Sure, some of these big projects have been plagued by long delays. Take the Perth Arena,...
Continue reading ...
 

The Mosman Park Memorial Hall in Lochee St

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, June 4, 2012,
Having recently moved to Mosman Park from Yokine, I've been having the occasional stroll through the streets to get a feel for the suburb. It's a unique place and a bit of a mishmash demographically.

It's just on the eastern side of the busy Stirling Highway, which runs right alongside the railway line. On the other side of that is the very upmarket Cottesloe. But right near the train station there's a basin containing a whole plethora of apartment blocks, a couple of which are very tall inde...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth Arena voted the city's ugliest building

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, May 17, 2012,
Perth Arena, which is still quite a while from completion, has been a controversial project right from the start. It should have been completed long ago, and the owner of the company overseeing its construction clearly rues the day he became involved with it. He hates the very sight of the structure, memorably likening it to a "squashed beer can".

As if that were not enough abuse it has now been voted "Perth's ugliest building" in an online poll of Perth Now readers. If the building had a soul...
Continue reading ...
 

The drug DMT is now being made in meth-ravaged Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, April 29, 2012,
Perth has a real problem with drug abuse in general and "ice" in particular. It seems that not a week goes by without at least one clandestine meth lab exploding in a house or unit somewhere out in the suburbs.

And you do see a surprising number of people who seem to be under the influence of the drug, or ravaged by its long term use. I was on a bus into the city a few months ago and this very wound-up young guy got on. My first thought was that he was high on meth. And sure enough he soon sta...
Continue reading ...
 

Luxury apartments in North Fremantle

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, April 23, 2012,
Fremantle, south of Perth, is a hub for greenies, lefties, and other alternative lifestyle types who aren't exactly big fans of major new developments. But several such projects have already been completed in the area, with many more currently being constructed -- and others still on the drawing board, no doubt. I can imagine many of the locals being absolutely livid about this.

The Northbank precinct of North Fremantle is perhaps the most visible of these sites. You can see it very clearly f...
Continue reading ...
 

Terrace Rd apartment blocks bring back memories

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, April 20, 2012,
Terrace Road is right near the centre of the CBD, just near the Perth Concert Hall and the Duxton Hotel. There are several old apartment blocks on that road that have a great view of the Swan River and South Perth. They've been significantly refurbished in recent years.

I've wandered down that road a few times now and it always brings back fond memories of my childhood. Back in the seventies, after my parents separated, my father moved into one of these flats. My sister and I would stay there ...
Continue reading ...
 

Blog commenting now enabled

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, April 15, 2012,
This is just a quick post to inform readers that this blog now has a Disqus commenting facility included. So you can add your thoughts if you wish.

You can't actually see it on the blog's main page with all the recent posts included. The actual form only appears with each individual post. So if you wish to comment, just click on that post and scroll to the bottom of it.

Continue reading ...
 

The rise of girl gangs in Perth is disturbing and depressing

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, April 13, 2012,
Any kind of violence is disturbing, of course. But it seems more so when the perpetrators are female, and young as well. Some might think that's a very sexist thing to say. Well, maybe it is. But then human nature is pretty sexist.

Men -- particularly young men with their bodies full of testosterone -- are naturally very aggressive. Throw in other factors such as emotional scars caused by parental or other abuse, lack of good role models, poverty, allegiance to a gang, drugs and alcohol and yo...
Continue reading ...
 

Three thieves run amok in Claremont, Cottesloe and Como

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, April 10, 2012,
Having recently moved to Mosman Park, I've been walking down to Cottesloe Beach in the afternoons lately. While wandering down that way at about 4.30 PM yesterday, I saw a police paddy wagon zoom north, sirens blazing, along Marmion St. At the time I thought it was probably heading to a pub in Cottesloe, or maybe Claremont, to deal with a drunken brawl. But I think it may have been attending to this criminal rampage.

Inspector Mal Anderson said the crime spree started about 4pm yesterday with ...
Continue reading ...
 

Agencies launch anti-violence campaign

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, March 30, 2012,
Here's more confirmation of the increasing violence in Perth: The state government is launching a massive, coordinated anti-violence campaign:

The plan, backed by more than 30 agencies across health, education, corrective services and police sectors, calls for more health nurses to help troubled children, compulsory alcohol and drug education in schools and more public transport after midnight to stop loitering.

It singles out alcohol as a major cause of violence and calls for tighter controls ...

Continue reading ...
 

Spate of wild parties in Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, March 26, 2012,
Huge, out of control parties are not isolated to Perth, of course. However, this city does seem to have far more than its fair share of them. When I was living in Sydney there were reports of such events, but not nearly as many as I've been reading about in the papers over here lately.

Last weekend several such events occurred. In one of them held in Balga a policeman was knocked unconscious. It's alarming that anyone would be so out of control, but it's worse that the kick was delivered by a ...
Continue reading ...
 

Claremont Showgrounds unlikely to host Big Day Out again

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, March 23, 2012,
There is now doubt about whether the Big Day Out and other big music festivals will return to Perth due to the Claremont council not wanting them to be hosted at the Claremont Showgrounds. Excessive noise is one of the main reasons, with several complaints being made in recent years.

I can certainly understand people in that suburb and neighbouring ones railing at the noise that such events produce. Back in 2007 I happened to be in Shenton Park at the time the Big Day Out was being held. That...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth trains increasingly crowded

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, March 23, 2012,
One thing I have noticed since returning to Perth back in 2010 is how much more crowded the trains have become. This is really pronounced at peak hour. I haven't ridden on all the lines at this time but I've often caught Midland line trains around knock-off time and been amazed at just how chockas they were.

There must be a lot of frustration about this growing problem for Perth commuters. And Labor are trying to tap into that, encouraging people to express their feeling about the issue on soc...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth skyline growing like Dubai, says Jeff Kennett

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, March 9, 2012,
Still on the subject of state politicians making observations about big changes affecting Perth, former Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett says the frenzy of construction going on in this city is reminiscent of Dubai.

While we certainly don't have as many huge and ornate skyscrapers over here, the skyline has definitely changed a lot in recent years.

The shot below is from North Perth. You can't see every major building in the CBD, of course. Some are concealing each other. But two of the tallest o...
Continue reading ...
 

Premier Colin Barnett laments Perth's increasing violence

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, March 9, 2012,
Having returned to Perth from Sydney close to two years ago, one thing I noticed was how many news reports of amazingly vicious and violent attacks there were in this city. There even seemed to be more than when I was last here in 2006-2007 (I was shocked at all the mayhem being reported at that time, too). But even that period was far worse than when I was growing up here in the 70s and 80s.

I wondered that perhaps this was a kind of illusion resulting from my greater interest in news and cur...
Continue reading ...
 

Strange building in North Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, February 16, 2012,
Perth does have its fair share of odd and eccentric buildings. And one that has long fascinated me can be found on the corner of Scarborough Beach Rd and London St in North Perth.

It's an odd structure that has a vaguely Mediterranean feel to it and it looks like some sort of storage space. It's been there for as long as I can remember, and every time I go past it I scratch my head wondering what it's for, and what the hell the builder was trying to say with it! I suspect that many people ask ...
Continue reading ...
 

High competition for rental properties in Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, February 10, 2012,
There has been quite a bit of talk in the media about how Perth's rental market has changed recently. The main issue is how rents have soared.

But there's also the very high competition for rental properties. I got a taste of this directly just recently ...

For various reasons I have been toying with the idea of moving from my current unit to another one. So I did some Googling and found a place in Maylands that looked like it had potential. There was a public viewing at a set time a couple of ...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth begins heat wave. Beaches packed, lifesavers busy!

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, January 24, 2012,
We're in the middle of summer, so it's hardly surprising that the temperature is soaring. There have been a few stinkers in Perth lately, some of them very humid indeed. And there was that thunderstorm not so long ago ...

But this week looks like it will really stand out for its sustained and intense heat. The Weather Bureau predicts it will be the hottest week for 47 years. If this does turn out to be accurate it will give some ammo to global warming believers, no doubt!

In any case, the beac...
Continue reading ...
 

Murals at Shenton Park train station

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, January 14, 2012,
Not unlike the Daglish station nearby, the railway station at Shenton Park is covered in many colourful murals. It seems that the ones now present are a second edition. (The first batch were painted back in 1998, but peeled away over the years.)

This photo shows the station from the western side.



Here's the view as you walk down the steps into the station.



The artwork on this side is generally train-related (appropriate considering the location!).







Then it becomes a pretty wacky and surreal sce...
Continue reading ...
 

Mettams Pool closed after shark sighting

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, January 13, 2012,
If there's one thing that has stood out in local news reports recently it has to be the high number of shark sightings off Perth beaches. I have been back here a bit over a year and a half. But I'm pretty sure that there weren't nearly as many such stories at this time last year. And there were far fewer over the years 2006 and 2007, when I was living here. The numbers really do seem to have just shot up in the last year. This period could be dubbed Perth's Summer of the Shark!

The latest sigh...
Continue reading ...
 

Daglish train station the site of street art project

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, December 21, 2011,
I picked up a recent issue of the Subiaco Post and read a story about a project being conducted by the Public Transport Authority. The tactic was to deter graffiti taggers by beating them to it, so to speak. But instead of putting up the usual ugly symbols, they would commission images that were aesthetically pleasing to passengers.

Urban artist Drew Straker created the works at Daglish station that were mentioned in the article. It seems he's been doing this for a while now.

The photo publish...
Continue reading ...
 

Mueller Park, off Subiaco Road

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, December 20, 2011,
About ten years ago I lived in a unit in Subiaco Road. That block, one of many, is in a great position -- just a couple of minutes' walk to the West Leederville train station, and only bit further to City West Station. It's also very close to the cafe strips of both Subiaco and Leederville.

Subiaco Oval is also just nearby. Whenever there was a game being played there the trains would be chockas with families, all proudly wearing their team colours. On those days and nights you could clearly h...
Continue reading ...
 

Water tower on Roberts St Joondanna

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, December 17, 2011,
One common feature of cities all over the world is the water tower. These large, sometimes weird looking structures are usually built on high ground so that gravity alone can propel the water down into the pipes in the event of a water shortage. Because of this they are often prominent landmarks themselves and usually visible from a long way off.

Perth has a few of these. One that almost everyone in the city will recognize is the Joondanna water tower on Roberts St. These shots were taken fro...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth buses to become more crowded

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, December 11, 2011,
Transperth has just made a decision to increase the maximum number of passengers allowed onto its buses. Yet another sign of the city's inexorably rising population, no doubt.

Being a regular bus and train user myself, I've noticed just how crowded they have become lately. Obviously, peak hours are the worst. That said, things aren't that bad.

Most of the time the buses here are only about half or three quarters full. The main downside is that you tend to get antisocial behaviour on them from ...
Continue reading ...
 

Burnt out van in Charles St, North Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, December 2, 2011,
I was on the bus into Perth at about 2.45PM today when it had to make a detour off Charles Street in North Perth. The problem was a burnt out van in a driveway just near Paddington Street.

The thing was still smoking after the firies had put it out. So it must have been fully ablaze only minutes beforehand.



I had a look from the other side of the road. Even there the smoke was truly noxious and acrid.



The cops were present, as I assume they are at all fires. So maybe it's wrong to read anything...
Continue reading ...
 

Christmas decorations up in Barrack St, Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, November 24, 2011,
One thing that I've always found amusing about living in Australia is the incongruity of celebrating Christmas here. As we all know the tradition comes from the northern hemisphere and is held in midwinter. So all the attendant imagery relates to that area and season: snow, reindeer, sleighs, etc.

But Down Under it's the hottest time of the year! And Perth in particular is famous for its summer heat -- as well as its beautiful clear blue skies. Of course, local Christmas-phobes find this even ...
Continue reading ...
 

The Aviary Restaurant and Bar in the Perth CBD

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, November 22, 2011,
Still on the subject of dining venues: Several days ago I was walking down William St towards the Wellington St bus station when I noticed some movement above the entrance to the Perth Underground. On closer inspection it turned out to be some people chatting in a new rooftop bar.

It's called The Aviary, and it opened earlier this month. It's obviously in a perfect location. I suspect that so many people will have noticed this eye catching venue that for members of the smart set it's already t...
Continue reading ...
 

Valentino Cafe Restaurant in Lake St Northbridge

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, November 21, 2011,
Northbridge, which is just across the railway line from the CBD, is Perth's main entertainment district, with a whole host of bars and nightclubs. It's also the most popular restaurant and cafe strip in the city.

James Street seems to have the bulk of them. The ones just west of Lake Street are the most elegantly designed. And Valentino, a cafe-restaurant on the corner of those two streets, creates quite a striking picture, particularly when seen in daylight through the sculpture that looms ov...
Continue reading ...
 

Deli ram-raided in Royal St, Tuart Hill

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, October 27, 2011,
One alarming social phenomenon that has been getting a lot of justifiable media coverage in Perth lately is the rise in drug use in general and the "ice" epidemic in particular. Not only are more and more people using this hugely powerful and damaging drug, but many are making it in makeshift labs in the suburbs of Perth. These seem to explode at almost regular intervals.

Related to this are the numerous robberies of various shops that occur from time to time. I'm not sure exactly how many ar...
Continue reading ...
 

The WACA floodlights and car park

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, October 18, 2011,
Because of the large increase in Perth's population, the atmosphere of the city has changed a lot from what it was like a decade or more back. And all the construction has given it a very different look as well. However there are some landmarks that have remained pretty much the same for ages. One of these is the WACA Ground.

While I'm sure it's undergone quite a few changes inside over the years, it still looks much as it always did from afar. The main features of this structure are the five ...
Continue reading ...
 

More shark sightings and attacks at Perth beaches

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, October 17, 2011,
Something a lot of Perth people must have noticed with alarm is the rise in the number of shark attacks in recent years. The latest one resulted in the death of Bryn Martin. Another poor bloke called Ken Crew was taken off Cottesloe about ten years ago. And there have been others.

These fatalities are both tragic and terrifying. But there are all those shark sightings as well. These days, you often hear about them on the news. There was one recently off Mullaloo beach. And here are details of...
Continue reading ...
 

Body found in Great Eastern Motor Lodge car park

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, October 11, 2011,
A week and half ago (on the last day of September) I was walking down Great Eastern Highway in Rivervale. It was a beautiful sunny day and there was a lot of roadwork being done. I decided to take a few shots of it for this blog. The Great Eastern Motor Lodge is a landmark on that particular stretch of the highway so I took a photo of it.

Recently the body of a murder victim called Mite Naumovski was discovered in the boot of a car left in the building's car park. It appears he was murdered on...
Continue reading ...
 

Lake Gwelup boardwalk photos

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, September 25, 2011,
Lake Gwelup is in Perth's north. It's technically not really a lake; more of a swamp. But it is quite a pretty location. It's a nice place to go for a walk or a jog. There's even a regular "fun run" held there.

On the northern side, just near Karrinyup Road, is a pretty boardwalk that juts out into the water and gives you a very nice view.







Continue reading ...
 

Perth traffic getting steadily worse

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, September 22, 2011,
A while ago I wrote about how much busier the roads in Perth seemed, compared to decades past. Now there are some facts and figures to confirm this perception.

Statistics gleaned from Main Roads showed that people generally spend much more time driving to and from work than they did twenty years ago. That would be expected, of course. But there's even been quite a rise in the last year.

This is clearly an issue of great concern for the State Government. And you can see evidence that they are on...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth Arena construction photos

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, September 14, 2011,
At about the same rate that the Perth Entertainment Centre is being demolished the nearby Perth Arena is being constructed. It's much bigger than the "Ent Cent" and I suspect will be a lot harder to tear down when it too finally passes its "use by" date several decades from now. As you can see from this shot (which, like all the others in this post, was taken in early August) it's amazing how much steel is in there!



Although it is a very big structure, you really can't get a sense of its size...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth Entertainment Centre demolition as seen from Northbridge

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, September 9, 2011,
As I've mentioned, the demolition of the Perth Entertainment Centre has been going on for weeks now and presents quite a memorable scene, particularly for anyone who has lived here for a while. The building has long been one of the CBD's main landmarks, after all.

You get a very close view of it if you catch any bus that goes through Northbridge into Wellington Street Bus station, or any train going to or from Fremantle, as you see in the shot below.



You can also see it from Northbridge if you...
Continue reading ...
 

The Lincoln Street Ventilation Stack in Highgate

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, September 7, 2011,
Perth is obviously undergoing great change at the moment. That's exciting. But it's also nice to see certain buildings, structures and landmarks that have been in much the same condition for as long as you can remember. One of these is the Lincoln Street Ventilation Stack in Highgate.

From time to time back in the seventies and eighties I would go near it and it always caught my eye. I never knew what its function was, however. I was a bit curious, but never enough to actually do some research...
Continue reading ...
 

William Street, Perth now a bustling, noisy hub

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, September 7, 2011,
The stretch of William Street between Murray and Hay is right in the heart of Perth's CBD. It has long been one of the busiest parts of the city. But even up until, say, five years ago, it wasn't all that different from what I recall from my youth.

I definitely can't say that about it now. Lately, there's been a lot of construction along William Street. And of course there's the Perth Underground Train Station, which opens onto the Murray Street Mall, right near the corner of William Street.

I...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth Entertainment Centre demolition fairly early on

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, September 7, 2011,
I took these photos of the demolition of the Perth Entertainment Centre a few weeks ago now, at the time I took the one on the site's main page.

The whole process is happening surprisingly slowly. There's quite a difference now to what is shown below. It is a lot more hollowed out and skeletal, but the basic structure is still mostly intact.







Continue reading ...
 

Perth Entertainment Centre demolition photos

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, August 29, 2011,
I'd say a high percentage of Perth locals will have seen the Entertainment Centre lately, and know that it's disappearing bit by bit. The demolition of this famous local landmark has been going on for several weeks now, perhaps even a couple of months, yet it's not quite half done. It does seem a bit odd that it would take so long. (Although I suppose its bottom heavy design meant that it could not be destroyed in one mighty blast, like so many big structures are these days.)

In any case it do...
Continue reading ...
 

Double murder in Tenth Avenue, Maylands

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, August 25, 2011,
Having actually lived in Maylands some years ago I immediately took notice of the news of a gruesome double murder in that suburb. My immediate assumption was that it was drug related and that seems to have been the case. Apparently the perpetrator was a heroin addict who had recently managed to kick his addiction, then relapsed.

Sadly, Maylands does seem to be one of the Perth suburbs where these terrible events occur comparatively often. I assumed it happened somewhere on the eastern side of...
Continue reading ...
 

The McNess Royal Arcade in Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, August 22, 2011,
A few months ago I read an article in one of the Perth papers about the many heritage listed buildings in the CBD. The story included an interview with an expert in the field who talked about the "look up" factor in the city.

By that he meant that you probably won't be aware of the city's architectural legacy if you look straight ahead. All you'll see then is shopfronts that have been refurbished over and over again to keep them looking contemporary.

You have to consciously lift your gaze to ...
Continue reading ...
 

The old Greater Union cinema building on Murray St, Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, August 22, 2011,
Back in the seventies and eighties when I was growing up in Perth there were two main cinemas in the city that got most of the business. There was the Greater Union "Cinecentre" on the corner of Murray and Barrack St and the plush (and then new) Cinema City just up the arcade on Hay St.

I always remember that Greater Union building for its rich blue top and sides. (Actually, it's a bit like Beatty Park for that reason.) Even though the last film was shown quite some time ago, it still looks v...
Continue reading ...
 

The Red Castle Motel in Rivervale

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, August 22, 2011,
If you drive along the Great Eastern Highway through Burswood you're sure to see the Red Castle Motor Inn in Rivervale. It's been there for as long as I can recall, and has always looked memorably incongruous. (Some people think it's incredibly ugly, but I think that's a bit unkind.)

It seems to be such an eccentric choice of design, which makes me curious about its history. I've done some Googling but can't find anything.

Anyway, here's one photo of it from near the Highway. I took it late in...
Continue reading ...
 

Walga Court Yokine, scene of knife attack

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, August 18, 2011,
The photo below is of Walga Court in Yokine. I took it early this afternoon. As you can see it looks like a pleasant, quiet and safe place to live.

Yet yesterday, at around the same time and on a similarly sunny day it was the scene of a horrific knife attack. The victim is in hospital in a serious but stable condition, apparently.

Hard to believe when you look at the scene.



Continue reading ...
 

Wallenius Wilhelmsen MV Toreador docked in Fremantle

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, August 18, 2011,
I went down to Fremantle the other day on the bus. Coming down Canning Highway, towards the Inner Harbour, just near the railway bridge over the Swan River I could see a huge ship docked at the North Quay. Actually, it was so solid and bulky my first impression was that it was a building.

Anyway, I managed to get a snap of it, which is below.



I caught the train back into the city, and managed to capture this ship (called the MV Toreador) from another angle as I went south over the bridge. Not s...
Continue reading ...
 

Beatty Park Leisure Centre, North Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, August 4, 2011,
Below is a photo I took recently of Beatty Park Leisure Centre, which is in Vincent St North Perth.

Long ago, it was just an aquatic centre pretty much. But now there are more facilities. Still, the building itself hasn't changed much from the outside. It still has those striking strips of blue. I remember them vividly from my childhood. Nice to know that some things in Perth stay the same!



Continue reading ...
 

Perth's rising cost of living

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, July 8, 2011,
The fact that Perth has been ranked as a more expensive place to live than London, Paris and New York doesn't surprise me. It certainly depresses me, though!

For many years one of the main benefits of living in this city was how amazingly cheap it was. You could get by on next to nothing in so many ways. Rent, food, power were all cheap as chips. But now they've all risen substantially. And it's that cumulative effect that changes your whole experience of the place.

Take rent: When I came bac...
Continue reading ...
 

Robbery in Tuart Hill Minimart on Wanneroo Rd

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, May 23, 2011,
I live in Yokine, and I often go into the Minimart in Tuart Hill to buy the paper. I just read that it had been robbed last night. Thankfully no one was hurt. However the thief did brandish a gun, which must have been terrifying for whoever was working at the time.

Events like this are more and more frequent in this city. You just read about them all the time. Only a few days ago there was a terrifying home invasion in Dianella, the suburb I grew up in.

Back in those days, in the seventies and ...
Continue reading ...
 

More strong contrasts in changing Balga

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, May 4, 2011,
As I mentioned in a previous post, the poorer suburb of Balga has changed substantially, with lots of new construction. Of course it's not unusual that such a thing would occur, least of all in economic boom times. Still, it's something you really notice, and certainly gives the whole suburb a very different atmosphere.

Here's another example of the transformation. Below is a shot of an old, pretty run down block of flats near the Reid Highway. I suspect that there were quite a few more like ...
Continue reading ...
 

Mt Lawley train station

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, April 22, 2011,
Many of the older railway stations in Perth have been substantially improved, if not completely rebuilt, in recent years. But some have remained pretty much the same. One of these is Mt Lawley train station.

The shot below was taken looking away from Perth and north towards Midland.



Mt Lawley is a very comfortable, leafy suburb. While not as well off as, say, Peppermint Grove, it's certainly well to do. The area to the left of the photo above certainly boasts many impressive, large and stylish ...
Continue reading ...
 

Increasing traffic in Perth

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, April 22, 2011,
Aside from all the construction that's occurring all over Perth, there's a lot more traffic nowadays. The sheer number of vehicles on the road, and the noise they make, really brings home just how much Perth has grown in the last decade or so. While it is nowhere near as bad as a city like Sydney, which is a traffic nightmare, driving is becoming increasingly stressful in Perth.

Traffic jams were very rare in days of yore, but now they happen quite frequently, even if they are only minor a lot...
Continue reading ...
 

Brand new buildings in Balga

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, April 21, 2011,
Balga is a suburb in Perth's north. It's always had a reputation for being a rough area with a high unemployment rate and a lot of crime. It's often seen as equivalent to the poorer suburbs out in Sydney's west such as Macquarie Fields.

It hasn't hasn't transformed demographically all that much in recent years - although there are certainly many more migrants, particularly from Africa, living there now. (This is something you really notice in Perth's northern suburbs generally. When you go so...
Continue reading ...
 

Massive constructions between Murray and Hay Sts, near Barrack

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, November 17, 2010,
Barrack St is at the very heart of the Perth CBD. Buses come up from the Esplanade station, and travel north until it  transforms into Beaufort St. They then turn off into other suburbs at various points. Many, many times as a kid I caught the 53 bus there to my home in Dianella. That particular route seems to have disappeared, unfortunately. Still, many of the other buses that I recall such as the 21, 60, the 67 and others are still going strong. It sounds a tad sentimental to say this, but ...
Continue reading ...
 

Perth Arena and Perth Entertainment Centre

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, November 16, 2010,
Welcome to my blog about the real Perth. In this blog I'll record my thoughts about this pretty, still booming city.

As I mentioned on the home page, I've spent a lot of time away from Perth. I returned to live some months back after a couple of years in Sydney. Even in that time Perth had changed quite a bit.

The most obvious effect of the resources boom is the huge amount of construction going on, particularly in the CBD. It's not quite Beijing, but there are a lot of cranes in the increasin...
Continue reading ...
 
 
Good books about and set in Perth and Fremantle
Perth
Line of Sight
When War Came to Fremantle
The Devil's Garden
Follow ozblogsarticles on Twitter

DISCLOSURE: Occasionally I include affiliate products (such as books) in blog posts. If you do end up purchasing one or more of them as a result of clicking on a link, I receive a small commission which comes at no extra cost to you. 

Please check out my YouTube channel, which now has several videos of Perth.
Protected by Copyscape Unique Content Checker

NOTE: All images on this blog are copyright protected. I will take action against anyone found lifting them for their own use. 

Categories