It’s stress down day. Does that make you feel more stressed? No time for stress down day? I hear you.
It’s difficult to dismount a moving treadmill. There’s no grace in it. And it seems slowing down is not an option… But really, that’s just asking for trouble. If we don’t pause ourselves, our bodies will, and stress is an indicator it’s on its way to showing us a big fat STOP sign.
Last night I met Lifeline’s Chris Wagner in the recently-Bieber-eradicated Olsen Penthouse with slippers on my feet and bubbles in hand… “Australians are crap at managing stress. 93% of Australians are stressed. 7% are liars,” he said. Well said.
“Australians are crap at managing stress. 93% of Australians are stressed. 7% are liars.” – Chris Wagner, Lifeline
He also offered five simple tips…
One: Do exercise.
Two: Talk to someone you trust.
Three: Speak to your GP.
Four: Eat well
Five: Do something you enjoy. Think of something you enjoy… now when’s the last time you did it?
We also had a quick health check, a quick manicure and a quick massage… lovely. Except I found out my cholesterol reading… boo. Food writing is a dangerous game.
Stress Down Day is a great reminder to put our feet up and also a fundraiser for Lifeline – who take a call every 50seconds from seriously stressed peeps in crisis. What a job. Check out www.stressdown.com.au to help them out. Big ups to major sponsor BUPA insurance too.
I’ve gone into business with that Dan Kuseta of Milk Bar magazine fame. We’ve got a little content agency called Milk Bottle Productions and we’re doing content, copywriting and activation work. It’s all got shakin’ pretty fast and it’s wonderful!
One of our major offerings (alongside website copy, custom publishing, social media copy and fabulous flash mobbery) is beautiful video work.
It’s by the team who deliver Milk Bar’s videos, so you can be sure it’s well-produced and engaging with a documentary/editorial style… Here are a few of my favourite Milk Bar magazine pieces to give you an idea…
You can’t get sweeter than… Melbourne City Rooftop Bees
Or smoother than… Melbourne Jazz
More enlightened than… Potblack Ceramics
Or more salivation-worth than… Burch & Purchese
I’ll keep you posted once we’ve got our very own website! Meanwhile I’m at LouPardi [at] milkbottleproductions.com
I love Chitra’s Closet.
Most days my outfit consists of Chitra’s Closet with a little Bento; or Bento with a little Chitra’s Closet. Except last night when I was in Bento with ECA approved Cue, and got in trouble from Chitra… whoops.
I’ve been shopping at Chitra’s for many years. Before everyone was on about shopping ‘experiences’ she was delivering them. The designer herself piling outfits into sympathetically lit change rooms, making adjustments and invariably, a chink in my bank account. If I don’t come in for a while I get a follow up call. If a sample collection is in sometimes I get to take a browse – it’s part of the experience of being one of Chitra’s regulars. And it’s lovely (albeit dangerous).
What’s fantastic about Chitra is that women of all ages and sizes enjoy her collections. In fact, probably ladies with a curvier chassis set off her silhouettes better, which is a huge relief to many I’m sure, when for seasons on end skinny this and low rider that threatened to swallow our pride.
I try not to covet model’s bodies usually, but Chitra’s ladies are always healthy sized and last night I found myself whispering, “I want her butt.” I’ve a great respect for all my pals (yes, some of my best friends are skinny people), but it is so lovely to see a range of sizes.
Years after their first wear my Chitra’s pieces are in good nic and regularly complimented. Here’s an iPhone’d peek at the collection… Now noone go and buy that shirt below, because I neeed it.
So you may have read I’ve been gifted with the wonder of a blank slate, and that recently, I jotted down 50 things I’d like to do this lifetime, in no particular order. They’re not required reading in the least. In fact they’re little more than boxes I stood on to get to this post (well this head space; it may surprise you to learn my life is not a series of blog posts).
I was a little surprised by my top 50 in that rather than describe exact events, it felt to me to indicate a certain way of living.
Having let my subconscious boil it down for a bit, four key points tumbled out whilst I was trying to write to-do lists.
Turns out this is what I want:
If you don’t read scribble, translated, that says:
1. Location independence
2. $ independence
3. Great work
4. The time to enjoy it. [Love]
Although these look terribly general, they’re actually an awesome structure for decision making. If any given option doesn’t add to achieving these things, I can discard it. Superb!
It’s hard to find a drink of choice. There are so many to choose from and it depends on your mood and a million other what-nots.
But at some stages in life there’s that drink you go to and it feels alright every time. Sometimes it’s a favourite bottle of wine to share with girlfriends, a special red you and a partner love, a go-to-celebratory sparkle for milestones.
I found a favourite tipple not so long ago and although I loved it I was a little sad it was in short supply. Times are changing though and now, when I scan the spirit bottles rising high behind the bar, I’ll settle upon a couple of towering bottles of Gin. West Winds they call it, and it’s divine.
Savoury without getting too involved, potent enough to make a point without pushing you over and flavoursome enough to cut through tonic and a slither of something (cucumber, if the bargods are generous), it’s my go-to tipple. If you’ve got an effusive palette you might pick up lemon myrtle, Wattle seed, coriander or native bush tomato too.
The handsome taller and younger playmate of my other pal, a squat and serious Hendricks, this gin, is remarkable.
I interviewed a bloke behind it not so long ago, Jeremy (Jezz to his mates). He’s a gin fan through and through, give him a minute and he’ll talk about it for hours.
Together with his compatriots, who he describes as “Doctor Paul White, Jackie Chan and Mayo Clarke,” (a fiction) he makes the good stuff in Western Australia’s Margaret River, but resides here in Melbourne.
The mission? “We want to show Australia and the world that we can distill and produce great spirits. We have been making great beer and wine in this country for over 200 years; it is time for hard liquor to stand up.” Indeed.
“We wanted to make a contemporary yet locally-flavoured gin. It is important for us to utilise as much local product as possible, whilst retaining a global feel. The coriander is from Margaret River and we only import a small amount of juniper. We used cinnamon myrtle and lemon myrtle for spice and Wattle seed for texture and mouthfeel, in our English dry style, The Sabre. For The Cutlass recipe we increased the coriander: both root and seed and then added our native bush tomato. This little berry-like matter delivers a savoury, vegetal tone unlike anything seen before. To compliment this we have used Margaret River water as most of us spent our teenage years kicking around the clean surf and rolling green hills down south.”
Try the two but for my vote, it’s The Cutlass (the green bottle), a good book and some sunshine.
I hope your Easter is going hopping ace! I am in the process of considering what decisions to make and hopes to hold in light of a rapidly approaching crossroads. I thought I’d pen (keyboard) fifty things I would like to do this lifetime, then sort out a few life phases, then get into it. Easy, right?
Worth a go.
1. write a book
2. write another book (and another etc)
3. be companion to a hound
4. be companion to a cat
5. be companion to a human (hey – turns out this is in order!)
6. travel – Africa
7. travel – Luxembourg
8. travel – somewhere random (okay, maybe not in order)
9. live out of a suitcase
10. live in the same place for five years
11. start and run a successful business
12. take six months off
13. holiday with my bros
14. live in the same city as my London bestie (hopefully she moves, huh?)
15. make new friends
16. seek out inspirational folk and experiences
17. help make animal’s lives better
18. read books (and more and more)
19. learn French (mostly just the food words)
20. do more video stuff
21. make a difference
22. retain integrity
23. travel – Broome/camel trek
24. live somewhere rural
25. stay in a shack by the beach
26. travel – Hong Kong/China
27. travel – India
28. travel – New York
29. work and live overseas (HK, NYNY, Luxembourg, anywhere really)
30. play a part in helping my friends achieve their goals
31. convince humans to be kinder
32. live someplace I’m allowed to wallpaper a wall
33. have a parlour and host excellent gatherings of intelligent types
34. write for a fantastic food mag
35. connect excellent people
36. keep writing for a living
37. empower passionate people
38. have enough runway to exhale ($, time, energy)
39. find exercise which I enjoy
40. always wonder, always grow, always learn
41. hold my bestie’s babies
42. spend time with people who I can let my guard down around
43. fall in love
44. plant a garden and share the fruits
45. live above a shop
46. have great human connections
47. forgive mediocre humans
48. plan incredible funeral with marching band
49. die with dignity
50. start again
Right, so that doesn’t so much give me a map for the next few months but it is interesting. You can do it too if you like. In the comments, or on that serviette, or wherever. I’d love to see it. Or it can be your secret.
The Olsen, part of the arts series hotels is a special place. Imbued (a word I use when groggily content) with the art and soul (ditto last parenthesis but for puns) of artist John Olsen, it is a special sophisticated space with feeling*.
I do have images on my real camera, but for now, an iPhone pictorial journey…
*here I mean ‘soul’ but I used it last sentence.