• Lady Gaga: Magnificently Ugly December 13, 2018
      If Hollywood filmmaking is spellcasting, A Star Is Born seduced me absolutely. Bradley Cooper has demonstrated himself to be an immensely skilful filmmaker, in addition to an accomplished actor. I’d never paid him much attention: he was in The Hangover, and that was such a bucket of shit I thought it was best to […]
  • Is Jocko Willink A Psychopath? December 5, 2018
    After taking a regular interest in his podcasts, I’m finding it hard to tell. The appeal of Willink to anyone with testicles is more than obvious. He has willingly suffered and become a monster. He was the super SEAL; commander of SEAL Team Three’s Task Unit Bruiser during the Battle of Ramadi, one of the […]
  • The Worst First Date in the History of the World October 9, 2018
    There is something confronting about the disembodied voice of a stranger on the telephone, particularly when it’s someone you may fall in love with. I had meant to contact Bejazzled during the week, but everything had gotten away from me. When I called her Saturday morning, we arranged to meet in Brighton for coffee the […]
  • Ayahuasca: A Memorable Fancy September 8, 2018
    5. The malocca was transformed into a throne room and the courtiers partied in the room below us. I sat on my throne, a giant black widow spider at either hand, remote in the shadows. The throne room was furnished with the same timber as the malocca and lit by red and yellow light that […]
  • Ayahuasca: A Memorable Fancy September 5, 2018
    4. The ayahuasca, a thick, tar-green puree, ran into the glass. I raised it to my lips, held my breath, and attempted to pour it down my throat without inadvertently tasting it. The flavour was like a fist squeezing the base of my tongue. I swallowed it down, rinsed my mouth and spat into the […]
  • Ayahuasca: A Memorable Fancy September 1, 2018
    3. By the next morning, I felt physically sick and exhausted. I went to the dispensary and took the thimble of turgid green medicine. As the taste worked its way into my guts as a filament of revulsion, I considered giving the final session a miss. I figured that I’d gotten what I’d come for […]
  • Ayahuasca: A Memorable Fancy August 27, 2018
    2. The ceremony itself transpires in a ritual space called a malocca, which is a large communal hacienda. Each of the participants lies on a mat on the floor with a pillow, a blanket and a bucket at its foot. The ceremony begins with each coming forward to imbibe the ayahuasca, not unlike a communion […]
  • Ayahuasca: A Memorable Fancy August 25, 2018
    “By degrees we beheld the infinite abyss, fiery as the smoke of a burning city; beneath us at an immense distance was the sun, black but shining round it were fiery tracks on which revolv’d vast spiders, crawling after their prey… ‘The air was full of them and seemed composed of them; these are devils […]
  • An Open Letter to Hannah Gadsby August 4, 2018
      I just wanted to write to tell you how much I enjoyed your show, ‘Nanette.’ You don’t see a lot of genuinely incendiary stuff anymore. Incendiary and vital. Your show is full of emotional bloodletting, but it’s also deceptively sophisticated. You set your audience up really well by slowly peeling away the exceptions they […]
  • Death Symbols April 30, 2018
    Above: ‘Punisher’ emblem on RAAF Wedgetail surveillance plane. “Such symbology… is always ill-considered and implicitly encourages the inculcation of an arrogant hubris.” Lieutenant General Angus Cameron, chief of defence elect on his decision to ban the use of skulls, crossbones, The Punisher Logo, Grim Reaper and Spartan emblems amongst armed forces.   “We train young men […]