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Defying Empire commemorates the 50th anniversary of 1967 Referendum

Birthday celebrations fail to impress

By scumdorg - 10 March 2008 97

I went to the Canberra Day celebrations in Commonwealth Park on Monday and I’m wondering why I bothered. It was really quite rank and I was embarrassed to think that this is what we deem appropriate in order to celebrate the national capital’s 95th birthday.

There were too many security guards, too many kids and it was too hot.

There was quite a good band rehearsing on Stage 88 but this was over before it really began and it was back to finding something worthwhile to pass the time.

I went to the big top tent where the Play School show was about to start. I asked the guard whether there’d be any opportunities to meet Jay La’igaia as I was a fan of his when he was doing lifestyle TV on Channel Nine. I was told rather aggressively “No mate!” and then “you’d better piss off from here, this show is for kids and their parents only”.

I walked back to Stage 88 where I saw one of Mental As Anything’s roadies who was considerably more pleasant and agreeable. I asked when the Mentals were going to be on and he said 5:30. Since it was just past 2PM the thought of having to kill over three hours was too painful to contemplate. I had more interesting things to do at home like flea the cat and wash my hair (even though I’m bald).

I know that by posting this I risk starting up another RA flame war but I’m interested in how others saw the celebrations. Did I arrive at the wrong time? Did things pick up after I left? Is there something wrong with me?

Perhaps I’ve been in Canberra too long (we moved here in 1969) and perhaps I’m a bit jaded but I distinctly remember occasions like this in the Park in years gone by to be fun community events – the alcoholic frolics of the 1980s and early ’90s spring to mind. Maybe it’s another example of the collateral damage caused by nearly 12 years of John Howard, who knows? IMHO these celebrations were a waste of time and there seems little point in going through the motions again if this is all we can expect.

Over to you . . .

What’s Your opinion?


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97 Responses to
Birthday celebrations fail to impress
Sina 9:14 am 11 Mar 08

“I’d have moved you on too”

What for?

Comment by captainwhorebags — 11 March, 2008 @ 8:03 am

Because don’t you know, childfree singles are TEH EVIL!!!

pug206gti 8:21 am 11 Mar 08

I thought it was great. I don’t know that there are many other events in Australia where (despite the questionable pop-cred of the final few acts) you can bring a picnic including your own drinks and sit around having a good time for no particular reason.

captainwhorebags 8:03 am 11 Mar 08

“I’d have moved you on too”

What for? It’s a public event, on public land, he’s not violent or causing a disturbance. I’m hoping he wasn’t standing there with his hands down his pants, but someone in the vicinity of children does not a kiddy fiddler make.

Security agencies need to do attitude screening for their staff, and customers should demand it. Being built like a brick shithouse isn’t the only personality trait required when dealing with the public, especially at an event like this one.

Absent Diane 7:27 am 11 Mar 08

kids should not be allowed out in public. they are fcked in the head little retarded midgets. I hate them!

lemaChet 7:21 am 11 Mar 08

It’s not like you can blame Stanhopia for the weather.. despite his best attempts, he’s not able to control the weather…

BerraBoy68 7:19 am 11 Mar 08

How can there be too many kids? Maybe perhaps because you were hanging around the Play School tent. I’m not surprised the Guard moved you on being in there without any of your own children. I used to work Security at these events (including the Alcoholic Frolics) and I’d have moved you on too.

I did other family things with my kids yesterday, going to the local pool, playing, riding bikes etc.. Strangely spending an additional day with my wife and kids made it more fun… must be something wrong with me.

Cameron 12:23 am 11 Mar 08

ahaha – I didn’t see the complaint about the kids in there. Nice one.

CanberraResident 11:35 pm 10 Mar 08

Too many security guards you say? And you’d be the first to whinge if you got your head punched in and nobody came to your rescue.

Too many kids you say? Birthday parties are generally for kids, big and little ones. Where were your kids? At home playing computer games, eating chips and drinking coke?

Too hot you say? Once you’ve manage to whinge about everything else, then just throw in a whinge about the weather for the hell of it, hey?

Canberra Day is not meant to be an event for pissheads – it’s a family event, organised by the LOCAL government, for ALL of its citizens, young and old, oh and the weather cannot be helped. If it rained, you’d whinge. If it was windy, you’d whinge. To answer your question, yes, there is something wrong with you.

END

kevn 10:29 pm 10 Mar 08

We had a picnic on the other side in the early afternoon. Didn’t stick around to see it, but got caught in the traffic for about half an hour at around 5.

The parking in that area works ok if everyone is coming or everyone is going, but when public holiday bbqers leave as the afternoon event goers arrive, it’s a recipe for disorganisation.

bd84 9:36 pm 10 Mar 08

I hear the kiddies start young these days and like to beat up play school hosts, surpised they weren’t armed!

Cameron 9:35 pm 10 Mar 08

Have to agree with Nemo there – was a perfectly reasonable post until the attempt to connect some far reaching dots (Canberra Day and an ex-PM…)

Sounds like there were some clowns serving as security. Telling you to piss off because you weren’t a parent with your child? Right.

emd 9:21 pm 10 Mar 08

We went, it was hot and busy but fun. The kids enjoyed the kids entertainment, there were plenty of security guards but they just wandered about with their eyes open because nobody seemed to be giving anyone else a hard time. Roving performers were also doing a nice job, lots of drinks and ice cream vendors that were normally priced. Not even a line-up for the loos. The bands on Stage 88 sounded great, so possibly 2pm was just not a great time to be there unless you really wanted to see Fifi and the Koala Brothers.

sepi 8:49 pm 10 Mar 08

I have fond memories of sitting around into the evening watching the Doug Anthony allstars on stage 88, and getting into a cask of wine. Those were Sunday in the Park days. Food andWine frolic was fantastic, but I think it got a bit out of control.

Now there events seem to always feature compulsory kiddie entertainment above all else.

Nemo 8:46 pm 10 Mar 08

You have got to be kidding. Please explain the link between an ex PM and an event organised by the equivalent of a local council.

You asked if there is something wrong with you, evidently there is.

jaydee 8:44 pm 10 Mar 08

I did the Canberra Bike Ride this morning which was great fun. By the time I finished, had coffee, barbeque lunch it was 12.3oish. I rode up to Stage 88 but decided it was simply too hot to hang around and see what the festivities were. I have only been in Canberra 6 months, but am afraid Human Nature and Ricki Lee simply don’t do anything for me. What I do love about this city though is that there is always something happening, so if what is on this weekend is not to your liking, maybe something next week is. I am looking forward to my first Skyfire which is next weekend I think.

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