27 January 2009

Manly Beach Riot Day

Following a long celebration period, during which adults modelled marathon drinking in sub-urbia, Australia Day or Invasion Day should be the final bang of the same thing.

To flee sub-urban misery, the oversized cars where packed with plonk, meat, dogs and kids. THE public space in which it all has to take place is of course the beach in Australia. Walkers invest their life racing no less than three dogs in harness (on average) along the beach to empty them there. Schoolies had settled on their towels with endless containers of alcohol and smokes. National flags covered the Corso, most bodies and their skin.

From beach to town the ubiquitous primal sound of "woo hoo" could be heard. The utterance of 'winners' borrowed from another culture and sphere has long replaced the endemic home-grown articulations of "cooee".

Public intoxication
, violence, rage and glassing are not foreign to Manly. "Violent attacks have risen on the northern beaches by almost 10 per cent in the past two years." Violence is often said to be 'alcohol-fuelled' amongst mostly young men. Even businesses on the Corso are 'feuding' and 'brawling' diplaying violent behaviour in public.

Later in the day a group of 80 young Australians arrived (by public transport?) also clad in the national flag and said to be sedated by alcohol. Their utterances are claimed to have consisted of: "Aussie, Aussie, Aussie’’, "Aussie Pride", "f*** the pigs’’ "f--k off we're full", "we’re celebrating we are Australian, f*** the ethnics", "lets go f--k with these Lebs" and "tits out for the boys" .
Their deeds were violence against people and vandalism towards objects."They jumped on top of cars and smashed windows as they ran up and down Manly's Corso." "An 18-year-old Asian female in one of the cars was showered with shattered glass, giving her numerous cuts to her arms... A taxi driven by a Sikh Indian was also targeted". Manly Police and the riot squad attempted to restore civic order.

"Australia Day became a scene of brawls and vandalism across the state - with anger spreading from Shellharbour in the south to Port Macquarie in the north." "Ambulance crews were called to a fight at Sutherland train station with reports of a 10-person brawl, with a glassing and a female with a fractured finger." "Police say about 1,000 people were involved in the fight at Burleigh Heads". Head injuries at Batemans Bay. A "massive brawl"erupted on the Queensland's Gold Coast.

The 2005 Cronulla riots in NSW also come to mind. District battles for the golden 'public' sands away from unsustainable hot sub-urbia.

Sydney riots I, 05
Defending the turf II, 05
Sydney Riots, Beaches and Exclusionism, III, 05

Spooky for Australian Children, update: 040109 abc
Rebel Without a Cause
Riots With a Cause
Manly 'morons' rampage was racist: academic. SMH 270109, " racism dressed up as nationalism"

18 January 2009

Channel-billed cuckoos

As mentioned before in detail, the Channel-billed cuckoos are now looking like adults. Their thighs and claws resemble that of a bird of prey. The Wattle birds were feeding their very large offspring and the Koels with the local native fruit of the area.
Image: Scythrops novaehollandiae, Brehms Thierleben, via Zeno

15 January 2009

Manly Beach Drift 'wood' - January

A monthly summary of what has washed onto the shore or beach through the winds, tides, waves or human action. Marine debris, flora and fauna, dead or alive:

Each day washes another type of jelly fish up, today bluebottles, yesterday a mysterious 2 cm 'button' with a dark blue short fringe. The entire beach filled with them. The day before, transluscent blobs. Heating up the ocean, turning it into an acid brew and eradicating the predators of jellyfish (Sunfish, turtle etc) will produce an ever denser 'bloom' of more or less stinging jellies to wade and 'swim' in.

Many different types of kelp in beautiful shapes. A living hermit crab (Pagurus sinuatus) walking about in a big shell. One cuttlefish whole and the other with arms and tentacles cut off, cooking on the sand. 'Cheap bait'? Desperate fishing people swish nets of stinking fishheads on the sand, maybe to attract sharks? An abundance of fishing junk all along, reels, nylon etc.

At the pipes of sub-urban eutrophication lingers a mysterious smell. Intertidal critters do their best to coat the pipe. Terns love the safety of the tall signs. Real driftwood, washed in by the king tide.

The human contribution: Smoking all over the beach, toxic butts in the surf. Large groups of young people all with unprotected heads in the water and on the beach. Their coaches and carers are well covered from uv radiation.
On the sand and in the surf, the smell and sound of petrol racing. Roaring, smelly boats in 'operational areas', getting close to bodies in the surf. Buggies racing along the sand, without an apparent urgency for speed. One day it will be termed an 'accident'.
Commercial speed boats spin right into the Cabbage Tree Bay Aquatic Reserve, depriving the marine fauna of a safe habitat. Swimmers and divers are in great danger form aquatic 'wheelies'. The airspace also has more frequent hovering of helicopters, private and commercial 'joy flights'.

On the litter front, the usual 'one mouthful' wrappers and containers, many balloons, gift wrapping and other marine debris on the shore line.

Denise Ellis Kelly pointed out how a speeding motor had killed a Little Penguin. She also mentioned how the shark net tangled and drowned a dolphin at xmas. (Manly Daily, 140109, p. 22) This is probably just the visible 'tip of an iceberg'. The motor boat and living body interface is as deadly and polluting as terestial traffic. Ban, reduce and lower speed. Motorised lifesavers' high speed is only warranted if life is in danger.

Aerial plastic tangle in the form of kites, string and balloons are left in the tall pines for animals to get entangled in.

The extreme light pollution along the beach from North Steyne Club to Queenscliff pool is an “ecological trap” for wildlife and a blinding nuisance for people. One light bellows out CO2 pollution during the day as well. What a waste.

150109 Image 2 & 4 :Penguin art exhibition by children in the Manly Library. "Boats can hurt penguins. Slow down!"

A moray eel washed up, strangled by fishing line right behind the neck. Another inhabitat of the Cabbage Bay Marine Reserve reef became victim of fishing by-kill.
More Crested Terns (Sterna bergii) indicating heat to come.

The daily junkspace: unwanted flimsy plastic sun tents, generously left behind when broken down after a low usage rate. Large sheets of plastic tarp and the usual unwanted plastic bits.

On the beach walkway - many cars, unloading their commercial loads for the day. The council “green machine” billowing black smoke, repelling people from using the beach parade. The noise and pollution impact on beach users from driving on pedestrian paths is considerable. Operators stop for long periods to engage in long 'ride on conversations' – all with running motors of course, as it is customary in CO2 belching hot Australia. The accumulated fumes from the diesel-intensive mechanical sweeping and the decibel pollution drives people from the public space which is apparently being 'cleaned' for them. 220109Another large dead moray eel with a tumor/growth? on the side of its body. A dead frog and many blue bottles. A hot ocean and the feeling of desertification racing. Despite it all, SUVs and airconditioners are pumping up the Hot Planet. 300109

05 January 2009

Movie: The Bards who lived at Manly Beach

Now the movie: 'The Bards who Lived at Manly', Henry Lawson. Made with Xtranormal, Text2speech, 3D movie editor - first try.