As you fly down the highway, heading south from Sydney, you will notice a bright orange temple on your left. This is the Nan Tien Buddhist Temple. Many times, I have gone past it and thought it looked like a fabulously interesting place. Two years ago, I decided to add it to my bucket list. Last year while going through my bucket list items, I decided to pop onto the temple website and discovered they do meditation retreats. I booked myself in for a 2.5-day retreat in mid-June and thought it would be a fascinating experience.
You stride down the street in excitement as you go to meet your partner. You notice him 100 meters away. You imagine running the last distance and flinging yourself into his arms followed by a passionate smooch on the sidewalk. What happens? You walk up to him and he leans in and pecks you on the lips. You feel disappointed. You think to yourself “maybe he doesn’t really care for me”.
Do you ever feel like dating, relationships and sex has an unwritten rule book that you can’t seem to grasp? Do you ever create imaginary standards that you then try and force yourself to measure up to? Do you look around and feel like you are tracking along a little slower than everyone else?
Yes, that is a reference to Chorus Line. No, this post is not about musical theatre. Instead, it is an ode to a podcast that is a meeting of two great minds in Australian Media.
The delightful duo that is Annabel Crabb and Leigh Sales meet every week to discuss what they have read, what is on TV, trending news and pretty much whatever else crosses their minds. Having known each other for many years, it feels as though pair has invited you to join their clique. Skipping across topics, from something trivial to a serious event history, Crabb and Sales tell starting personal anecdotes but also offer some brilliant book recommendations. This really shouldn’t be a surprise given their wealth of knowledge and experience in the industry.
For those of you who think the ABC is for Grandparents, I can’t tell you how wrong you are. Sales has fronted the news program 7:30 for the past 6 years, prior to which she covered key global events as a foreign correspondent and radio host for the ABC. Crabb is also an ABC associate who is known for her role as a political editor as well as Kitchen Cabinet, her TV program where she goes to prominent Australian’s homes to interview them and enjoy s home cooked meal. Both are also remarkable authors too. Man, now I realise the pressure is on!
Of course, being the journalists they are all about references so all the shows or books they mention are detailed in the show notes on http://www.chat10looks3.com
For those of you who are already fans, you will realise I am pretty late to this party. It has been hitting the airwaves since 2014 so for anyone who is hearing about this for the first time… you have 52 episodes ready to go!
The show’s motto says it all – ‘think of it as time well-wasted’. But is time really wasted when you are enriching your mind?
The alarm goes off. You drag yourself out of bed. You chuck your runners on and force yourself out the door. You walk for 20 minutes and with each step you take, you imagine that it’s forcing ever glob of fat to melt of your body. You come back home, step into the bathroom and strip off. You turn your naked body to the mirror and you despise the reflection. The height, the hair colour or style, the face, the breasts, the waist, the skin colour.
Sometimes you wake up and float through your day feeling blessed and blissful. Then there are those days when you wake up, check the time, pull the covers back over your head and feel like the world is pressing in.
Earn money, have a career, clean the toilet, cook a dessert, see a friend, call your mother, open a new bank account, write your will, go on a bloody date, do something you love, go for a god damned walk, do something good for humanity! Our to do lists can be never ending. The world can keep shoving new things in our faces that we ‘should’ be doing with our time. Our own minds can create these big mountains of never ending time drains that can make us feel like we are being strangled. At the end of the day, when we finally drag our bodies in to bed, we have spent our waking hours berating ourselves. Ever laid awake with your mind chewing over thoughts while anxiety and guilt sit on your chest?
Anyone who has any understanding of the battle faced by Syrian’s in their homeland will have heard of, and hopefully watched, the brilliant documentary, White Helmets.
Have a pooch and want some quality one on one time with them? Don’t have a pooch and feel deprived of slobbery kisses and hugs? The RSPCA Million Paws Walk is just around the corner and there are a few ways you can get involved.
You can sign up for the Million Paws Walk challenge and ask your family and friends to donate for your efforts. See how many steps you can clock up leading to the final event day.
STOP EVERYTHING YOU ARE DOING! And start listen to S-Town, the latest genius podcast from the minds behind Serial and This American Life.
If you already listen to the latter podcasts, you will be familiar with the poetic narratives and soft suspense of the NPR shows. If you don’t, WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN DOING WITH YOUR LIFE?
This seven part serial starts out pointing you in one direction but then you quickly find yourself on a ride that leaves you confused and wanting more. It has a little bit of everything – a murder mystery, a treasure hunt, a tragic death and the tales of life.
Without giving too much away, the unique characters from this story are real people and there are plenty of stories around the internet revealing their faces and homes. But before you go searching for this, listen to the podcasts. You get a real sense of their journey as you follow creator Brian Reed uncovering secrets and discovering more about the goals and realities of the people of Woodstock and Bibb County.
The beauty of a podcast is the can be played on your commute, as you exercise or in bed before you fall asleep so you really have no excuse not to start listening. It is only 7 hours in total, after all.
So get on it, and don’t forget to tell us your thoughts in the comments below!
If Emma Watson wasn’t awesome enough already with her activism, talent and epic Goodreads list, she is now also a fairy. The best kind of fairy there is: a book fairy. She is basically living my dream life.
Watson joined forces with The Book Fairies to spread the joy of reading, leaving books in public spaces for anyone to happen upon and enjoy.
On International Women’s Day, fairies all over the world from New Zealand to London took to the streets to take a literary stand for women, leaving some of the greatest feminist literature of our generation on the tube, at bus stops or in town centres. All the books left that day were from Watson’s Goodreads ‘Our Shared Shelf’ but leaving novels around major cities is not an incredibly new concept with organisations like Book Crossing and Books of the Underground already in existence.
Books on the Underground has been running for half a decade and it was working with this talented crew that The Book fairies were born. Fairies now operate in dozens of countries around the world (there is most likely some one in your city :O). The beauty is that anyone can sign up, all you need is the sticker starter kit which can be ordered from their website (The stickers help finders know that the book is not lost property but free for the taking!).
So I guess we know what we will be doing this weekend!