11 June 2010

Equal pay for work of comparable value

With Helen, I went to Sydney yesterday for what is being described as the 'biggest action since the 1970s' in support of equal pay. 3,000 people at a meeting in the Sydney Town Hall - the best organised, most positive and effective public meeting I have ever attended. Helen's close collaborator on many issues Narelle Clay, president of the Australian Services Union in charge.

What distinguishes this case is that it is not simply equal pay for same work (hard enough historically) but seeking equal pay for comparable work. With significant support from Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

Here Narelle and Helen at Wollongong before setting out, after they addressed those travelling north, along with Jennie George, first woman president of the ACTU and Arthur Rorris, head of the Labor Council.

A tribute to heroes of equal pay over the years.

There was a march, with some really cute horses.

It was a sunny winter day for a march, Helen in her element.

I was very pleased with this photo below, enlarge (by clicking on image) to see the broil of energy...

This spotless Men-in-Black machine seemed a creature deserving caricature, were it not entirely serious — and surely, in any serious situation, a provocative magnet not just to mature people who think it an object of fun but others who might be inflamed.

Helen's daughter Corina was there, on left below with other organisers of a hugely successful intergenerational feminist conference earlier in the year.

02 June 2010

Destruction, deconstruction, making use of..

I think I previously included in this blog our other preoccupation, dealing with aftermath of floods at our place Mount Eurobodalla but have not shown what we have been doing since, see below little movie...

It has become a stimulating and inspiring process, not a burdensome clean-up. I have been very fortunate in finding an artist with a chain saw, David, and we have not only been cleaning up but making new building materials...

I've had a turn, but am mainly accessory. It's good to work with someone who is focused on at least three things at a time, and to be in agreement that the precise use of this material, is something to be determined when we have the products, of which these some samples...we begin with these slabs from paulownia, heading next for the eucalypt that knocked this tree down, see the movie. Below the fork in the big gum tree in that movie there and in photo below, showing trench being dug to get at it, is at least 8.5 metres of straight timber, and above the fork a great deal more. There is another carried-in log of immense whorling complexity, we need courage to decide how to work on it, as slabs lengthwise or across. This paulownia is very simple to decide about!

Fun to re-use: the ancient little caravan, with which we began here 20 years ago, now serving as a timber jinker and as rough support for tarpaulins to cover cut lumber.

This is the big eucalypt referred to above, which we get at next... the not-long-enough wooden rail on top is 7.2 metres.

I had shared a view with a neighbour, in April: we both thought there would be another flood in June. Well, in the first week of June another five inches of rain, following five in the last week of May, and a cyclone in between, so maybe flood at any moment.

The lumber I made safe before the cyclone, but the shed could not be safe when wind lifts the top off a tree and throws it at the shed... So another task ahead in fixing/replacing the shed. Fortunately not the house.

In the picture below, the water is just run-off, not flood. While I was taking this picture below, two very large trees fell fifty metres away, at a time when, 7.30am, there was neither wind nor rain, see my story of it here, if you missed the link the other day!! :-)

I like this way of living in a creative mindset in very direct engagement with natural reality, where you are not in charge, there are other forces, metaphorically comparable to the way the novel runs away from me, stories take charge, characters take charge.

portrait and discovery of other life in Huskisson

I had gone to the Lady Denman Gallery at Huskisson to take a decent photo of my portrait of Murray Peters, if it had not been rejected as substandard by this no-standards exhibition's curator... and there it was! If this doesn't look a wonderful work of art, please blame the iPhone, not the painter.

... and there, see below, as a result of recent road work, I found, emerging from the ground, evidence of early life in Huskisson, or maybe it's future life emergent - Blue Metal Man?