The anti-hero…

In Opinion on February 18, 2009 at 5:23 am

So I’m at the last Anthony Mundine fight. I’m chuckling to myself about what a ridiculous place Wollongong is for a world title fight. Kinda like holding a one in Luton. World Championship boxing is supposed to have a veneer of glamour, Madison Square Garden, Caesars Palace, Wollongong entertainment centre. You gotta love it.

Anyway…I’m watching the under card and some honest Aussie lads are doing battle in the ring. Usual dumb Australian boxing fare. Neither man wants to take a step back so they just hit each other like angry children If one of them had a brain they would step back, have a little look and throw some intelligent combinations but Aussie boxers are a bit too scared of looking remotely good they want to look hard. All their mates are in the crowd, so hey, better to go out on your sword than actually do the smart thing. I don’t get it. Both fighters look unnecessarily fucked and I’m bored.

I look around the arena, sorry entertainment centre, I see Anthony Mundine watching some of the action. He’s an intense looking man, it can’t be easy being one of the most hated men in Australia for having the temerity to suggest that indigenous Australians might not be getting the treatment they deserve in their own damn land.

Mundine has been spotted by other members of the crowd. A section of who (sat behind me) begin to hurl abuse at him. “Fuck off you fucking Abo” “Fuck off ya black cunt” – nice.

I’m sat there thinking to myself. “I’d love to kick one of those guys in the face.” and other dark uber-violent cartoon fantasies but back on planet earth there’s me and my mate and about thirty of them.

Mundine won the fight much to the anger of the racist hate mob behind me. I went home pleased but I couldn’t sleep. What I’d witnessed was an insight into a side of Australia it does a very good job of pretending doesn’t exist.


A man could get paranoid…

In Opinion, Uncategorized on February 18, 2009 at 4:52 am

One of the strangest elements of Australian culture is that it’s clearly not considered rude to stare. There is a lot of staring going on here.

It’s not something that you instantly tune into but once you do it’s easy to start thinking you have something wrong with you, such is the intensity of the staring.

In this respect, Sydney is the complete opposite of London. Nobody will ever hold eye contact in London. Anything longer than 0.5 seconds emakes you a) potential rapist or b) someone begging for a fight. Neither is a positive image.

Most Australians are utterly oblivious to this staring until they spend anytime with me. Especially women, who are generally more perceptive than men.

“Why are people staring at us, what is their problem.” – ahhh love, welcome to my world.

You see, I hate to inform you of this but you my dear are a white woman and I am a black man. We are walking down the street clearly enjoying each others company, romatically or otherwise. This is sadly a rare sight in Australia.

Some men stare disapprovingly, some women stare mildly intrigued, elderly Australians fall into two camps – those that look disgusted and those that smile at us sweetly.

Everybody notices. If you ever want to know how it feels to be famous, come for a walk through CBD with me.

A humble disclaimer…

In Opinion on February 18, 2009 at 4:33 am

This blog isn’t meant to offend. OK, I lie.

I realised about a year ago that my everyday experience is somewhat different to 99.9% of the Australian population and along the way you’ll find out exactly why. It won’t take long to work out why. Trust me.

Some of those experiences have been incredibly positive, others well…I’ll tell you later, mate.

My promise to the reader is this – honesty –  No matter how painful, graphic or offensive, I’m going to deliver you a version of Australian life you aren’t going to find anywhere else.

If this project goes to plan, a year from now I’ll be deported.

N ; )