Tuesday, April 3, 2012
The tubular bells begin to ding, harping little cries like the tapping of an abacus, pip pip pip, as the days roll closer to the inevitable let-down of One Hundred Years of Canberra.
Proudly squatting on a trough of mud, in the centre of what was surely a sacred kangaroo pissing ground for zillions of years before, is this mortuary in the middle of Australia’s southern highlands, the concrete capital.
Savour the sights of butter-shades and bland, as you roll along the stupendous serpent of Northbourne Avenue, its grassy intersections laid with beckoning floral wreaths, and occasional road accident crosses, marking the deep spiritual beliefs all Canberrans hold for religious ceremony (a better life follows…) and drunk-driving.
Soon you’ll follow this Northbourne Nullarbor into a glossy hall of apartment brick blocks, where the charming tenement tenants of the outer ‘burbs will wave their windscreen squidgees at you in welcoming delight (as well as in demand for a buck to subsidise what is a very meagre bar allotment allowed them by governmental welfare).
Snake in on the Murray’s bus to the gristly almond coated bus shelter, not quite the jolliest of centres, the Jolimont, and bare witness to an incredulous amount of newspaper browsing iPhone idolisers waiting for late transportation to ship them to sunnier shores.
Now, don’t think we’re being pessimistic here. Canbra has more than a bucket of snails to offer the visiting Frenchies, and we’re about to delve deeper into it than perhaps any one human, public servant or student savant is willing to be ready for.
In fact, it has it all!
The hexagonal doom-box of Questicon, the bizarre and smoke-invested village of midgets at Cockington Green, the rape parade disguised as a drag derby called Summernats, the mouse-ridden minge puddle of Mooseheads.
A sprawled out sleepy squalor of suburbia can be viewed at its primitive peak from the needle of the sight-seeing syringe, known as Black Mountain tower. Here you’ll view, in the distance, how the alpine backroads which shimmy out unto the horizon are stocked with unpaved, bushland turnoffs, perfect places to rubbish the remains of another ‘missing’ Fyshwick prostitute who got lippy when realising the wallet was empty.
Turtles of disputable origins ram each other in the oily depths of Lake Ginnanderra, swimming, scooting beneath the rusted wrecks of a thousand submerged shopping trolleys, disgarded relics of a student shopping run bitten sour by the realisation of pricey booze bandits hiding behind the counters of Belconnen Woolies.
Or, take the action-smacked Action buses for a lark out to the vortex of the universe, the swooning, gargling stupidity of the cyclonic Woden Bus Interchange, where somehow, for reasons unknown to earth inhabitants, all the scumbags of the solar system magnetise together in an endless chain of ciggie bummers- all reaping handouts from the same staid guy as he sits in plaid and empties his Winfields before the neighbourhood wagon rumbles in front of him, air pressure doors huffing like the sirens of the pearly gates, to fetch and drag him back to his fibro existence out on the edge of oblivion and Tuggeranong.
Canbra Firestorm! Remember that? Who said great things never came from natural disasters. It nearly wiped out Woden! Unconscionably, firetruck firebrands sucked smokes while the blazes neared their northern terraces. Heresy and speculation? Absolute wonderment abounds, in every corner of the capital, whatever you believe. For instance, wind down in the greasy nudist nest of Kambar pool, where shimmering and shaven golden ancients stand around glossing their longfellas by the banks and slithering sea-snakes dash away in repulsion. Or, if treading water in a puddle of skin flakes with a gaggle of unrobed grandfathers is not your idea of a limerick, tirade down to the mucky soil sidling against Pine Island, where you and a canoe can do whatever lonely movements towards searching for the truth you want to do, out there.
Or, take a taxi!
Be driven about by former Nigerian judges, and let them wow and regale you over their tales of lost evening ventures, hustling Tony Abbott around from bar to homosexual party tavern and back again, out on the murky peripheries of nowhere.
It has been fabled Tony Abbott dances the dirty with Phillipeano love children, all born out of wedlock, in unison like bundles of trash, from out the pulsating womb of Kim Beazley’s festering goiter. Abbott pukes out fish bones, organs and entrails from the carcasses he has recently devoured, before hopping back into the Nigerian cabbie, James’, back seat sanctuary.
“Mercy for us all, Jimmy,” Tony mumbles, wiping placenta from off his jowls. He suddenly stares, intent with rage, at the back of Jimmy’s skull. “Nobody’s told you you’re a Nigger, have they Jimmy?” Abbott slaps the back off Jimmy’s noggin, and erupts into a wolfish and clattering hee-haw.
“Please, Mr Tony, no more of this racist roughhousing,” James stoically pleads his rights.
A vicious smirk crawls upon Tony’s fish-like lips.
“Say, you ever kissed a white man before, Jimmy?” His lips start to vibrate, a little aquiver, as he leans over to shower rat-poison breath into Jimmy’s ashen eardrums.
A gleaming silver sword of drool appeared on Tony Abbott’s lip tip, at this point, as James recalled (as he whisked me away to the resort which stood alone in the world for its advertising slogan, “a giggle for every shit supplied”, at the address Somewhere Between Desolation and Bliss) that yes, a shimmying globule of spittle ran from cheek to knee, like a shivering spindle of spider web, unnoticed by its carnivorous landlord.
“Kiss me now, James,” Tony Abbott tortured the black man with his tongue against the nape of his neck.
James closed his one working eye, in fear, at the knowledge Tony Abbott kept a loaded Smith and Wesson packed within his trouser fly.
“Please, Mr Tony. Please.”
Abbott threw his head back in a wild reptilian guffaw.
“AAAAAAHA!” He titled menacingly downwards, back into his seat, slumping out of the purveying street-light which had previously been dousing a grotesque hue of orange over his narrow and bepimpled tender.
“Alright James. Alright,” Tony lit a Cuban, and passed it up to the terrified driver in the front seat. “Take this cab to The Lodge. We’re going to have a laugh tonight.”
James recalls at this point, Tony unzipped his pant fly, and clicked the revolver's safety into the off position. James rolled the cab, at the hurtling speed Abbott demanded, into the ocean of the zone of night between 3AM and dawn.
“All those orange streetlights, like communist fireflies, buzzing in rows, all the way out to the airport…” James recollected, somehow poetically, as I removed myself from the sick scents which still lingered from Abbott’s Cubanos in the back seat of the lorry.
And there it stood; The Outhouse on the Outskirts of Oblivion. A dingy raucous was expunging through the bars of the lamp shining windows, and filtering off down the street.
The Rolling Stones “Can’t You Hear Me Knocking,” puffed through my consciousness like a death adder, and I followed this evidently fateful chain of circumstances and ambled into the din.
Speakers sided the dirty stage as an old man with fossilised whiskers chundered along through the lyrics, “Bad, bad, Leroy Brown, baddest cat in the whole damn town,” as the rest of the mob descended into a dismal chaos. I obliged myself by offering a beer to my gullet, and joined the swamp.
So, with all this tourist hyper-babble written and divulged, it is time for the due bureaucratic process, typical of this town, to take place so we all can get prepared for a slight clamour, a fart-sized magnitude of excitement over a few fireworks and celebrations next year.
Wave your flags, Canberra, as you wrinkle into the soggy skin of a successful centenarian in 2013.