Went with the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence on their 24th annual Taronga Park Zoo visitation. We’re told to wear sensible shoes, a hat, and that the event will go ahead in all weathers. The first highlight is the amazing ferry trip across Sydney Harbour, with a view of the Opera House, Harbour Bridge and the visiting Queen Mary cruise ship.
Mostly international Mardi Gras visitors attend this excursion so they can appreciate our local fauna, and the Sisters, led by Mother Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation, provide a hilarious commentary of poems dedicated to each animal and – to the shock of attendees – early colonial recipes for eating them! Kangaroo tail is to be made like oxtail soup, and black swans should be cooked in a moderate oven for two hours. There were also tips on how to make a delicious Galah Pie and Roast Wombat!
Held an ABBA picnic to play a new ABBA trivia board game I’d put together and have a sing-a-along.
I staked a perfect spot under a tree and sent out an SOS as there were picnickers everywhere in Camperdown Park, and I urgently needed more blankets to claim our turf.
A word re: Aussie ABBA fans: we’re hugely tolerant and will put up with retro discos where only hip hop is played, endure ABBA tribute bands that don’t know the words, and pay ridiculous amounts for smoked salmon on Ryvita at Scandi restaurants. But nobody messes with an ABBA picnic, and fans scurried back to their cars to bring extra blankets.
First on the scene was G, who’d just walked the length of uber-hipster King Street while wearing his Voulez-Vous badge – woe betide anyone who would dare make fun of it, and a few paid tribute by singing “A-ha!”. “It’s not just a badge, it’s a way of life,” G said, with his proudest expression.
“It’s not my job to come round and tell you what’s wrong with your restaurant. It’s my job to sell newspapers and to entertain and perhaps inform my readers: The last person who should be reading a restaurant review is the person that it’s about — they should already know.” – AA Gill
A.A. Gill and me at a book-signing, Sydney.
This is my fave youtube vid of him chatting about the highs and lows of his career and life.
AA Gill chatting to students
13:30: his audience.
14:31: Answer to where’s the best place to get a meal in London?
“What you eat should never be as important as who you’re eating with.”
“Nothing is as good as being a regular customer.”
“Is it the greatest Italian restaurant in the world – well, it is for me.”
Am one of the community speakers. Have done one speech so far, to about 60 people.
We have a network of over 25 community speakers, who come from a wide range of professional and cultural backgrounds. Our speakers are an important link between our Centre and the community. They have been specially recruited and trained with the skills and knowledge required to talk to the community about people seeking asylum and the work of the Centre.
Our presentations are free and suitable for a wide variety of audiences such as:
Community groups and clubs
Schools and higher education organisations
Churches and other religious groups
Professional associations and organisations
Presentations are typically 30 minutes in duration, which includes Q&A time. Presentations can, however, be tailored to meet the specific needs of your audience.
How to book a Community Speaker
We recommend booking a speaker at least one month prior to your event. To make a speaker booking click here.
Our Community Speakers Program currently runs across Sydney only. If you are from regional or rural NSW and are interested in our program we would like to hear from you, as we will be looking at ways to extend our community reach to areas outside of Sydney in the near future.
How can I find out more?
To find out more about the ASC Community Speakers Program please send us an an email firstname.lastname@example.org
To find out more about other ways that you can support the work of the ASC click here.
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Our Community Speakers Program is supported by the City of Sydney and the Pratt Foundation.
Love Adriano Zumbo and his amazing desserts and predilection for magic, fantasy and fairy tales. Great Willy Wonka velvet jacked and crazy bright blue shoes. The gold chocolate ducky in the ginger ale bubble bath! The back-to-school desk! The romantic Lovenbouche! The floating Willy Wonka Hat Trick!
Rachel Khoo is the perfect foil, with her Mary Poppins precise pronunciation, great foodie instincts and well-timed winces as Zumbo lists every Aussie dessert as his fave, or looks askance at his goofy laugh.
Am so happy no-nonsense Mum Kate won, nothing can beat her experience gained while making all those Women’s Weekly Dessert Cookery book recipes for school fetes. She said she’d made a lot of cheesecakes.
A big Mardi Gras moment when the confetti was shot out of a cannon all over the winners. Kate says she’ll use the $100,000 to buy a pop-up dessert truck where we can all flock to savour her incredible flavours. And she gets to make a creation to be sold in the Zumbo shop. Runner-up Ali, an insurance broker — famous for her anxiety-inspired meltdowns — thanked everyone for the “journey”. Loved Amie’s artistry in the show (though the annoying bandanna she wore every appearance looked like she was trying to hide a head injury).
Have been visiting the local bakery, Crispy Inn, more frequently thanks to this series, and grew fond of their custard mille-feuille, chocolate eclairs and profiteroles.
The contestants have figured out, since it’s Season 2, that the decisions don’t really mean anything, so *everyone* decided to stay together, as, why not? They could easily split up as soon as the cameras are switched off. Noone gets to look like the bad guy.
The highlight was Tatts and Teacher, with Tatts being self-destructive as he didn’t feel good enough for her, so he avoids getting hurt by screwing it up.
She keeps us in suspense, looking very cross that he keeps screwing up. But she says yes.
It doesn’t really matter, as all the couples weren’t legally married anyway, and who knows if they’re still together after the cameras stop rolling? Might as well say yes, then leave them in the car park.
Enjoyed the rest of the series, and I s’pose if there had been some splits it would have been interesting, but seems the contestants have figured out they can’t lose by saying yes they’ll stay together. Whereas saying no would paint them as the bad guy.
Hope Tatts and Teacher are still together.