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Three tips for learning a foreign language

For most of my life I was woefully monolingual. I struggled through trips to Europe with a lot of pointing and “Parlez-vous Anglais?” My German was inept but earnest, like a kindergartner’s finger-painting stuck to the family fridge. How things have now changed! Around 2013 I learnt about Duolingo and from October of that year […]

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Protected: Christmas Letter 2014

There is no excerpt because this is a protected post.

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the blue house from faraday street

Melbourne again

I cycle through the streets like I’m sorting through memories, trying to remember who I was, see my young face again. Again I’m on a bicycle, riding on Canning Street. Again I’m on Brunswick Street, passing by the Coles, jaywalking. Today I went to my old home. A gorgeous blue block in the middle of […]

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Coalition of the Killing: Conservative Foreign Policy Increases Terrorism

If you believe what they say, combating terrorism requires no-compromise leadership and a willingness to get your hands dirty. When the threat of terrorism about, real leaders (who are real men), know we can’t get hung up on luxuries like freedom or privacy: instead, we have to do what it takes to win. John Howard […]

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a generous envelope with $50 for me

How to be generous

A while ago I was in Adelaide, in my childhood home. I had one of those moments of revelation about how much I owed my mother, and I wanted to do something to show her my appreciation, gratitude and love. Suspecting that her love language is “acts of service”, I decided to clean the stove. […]

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joel floating in a pool

five years since graduating high school

About five years ago I finished Year 12 at Saint Ignatius’ College, Athelstone. I missed schoolies weekend but attended a Graduation Ball with the rest of the year level. Afterwards some of us friends sat round a table and wondered about what to come. Us same friends later holidayed in Victor Harbour, playing “Castle Crashers”, […]

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A screenshot of google maps illustrating the difficulties in planning or predicting.

Setting Goals, Making Predictions, Being Prepared

I’ve recently moved to a new city, Canberra, so I’m meeting new people and having lots of those initial-acquaintance conversations. I tell people that I studied Engineering for four years which sometimes causes confusion as I didn’t graduate: I ended up dropping out without completing that degree. When I reflect upon this there’s sometimes a […]

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a picture of mona, the museum of old and new art in hobart

David Walsh’s MONA: Art, Architecture, Life

MONA. Anticipation fills me, a pilgrim on a ferry, heading to MONA. It comes into sight: rocks leap from the bay, supporting verdant vines and the implacable exterior of what is surely becoming one of Tasmania’s and even Australia’s most compelling institutions. MONA. I’m the first off the ferry up the steps. At the top […]

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an orange butterfly on the tip of an outstretched finger, with papua new guinea's jungle in the background

Employment, Volunteering, and Passion

I have a complicated relationship with employment. Earning Money When I was young my mum pushed me to find work. My first job was delivering Messenger Newspapers in my neighbourhood. I made about $10 a week. I didn’t really mind it: I had the time, and the work wasn’t too dulling. I rather enjoyed cycling […]

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On Idleness, or Doing Nothing

One of my favourite things to do is nothing. Doing nothing is what weekends are for. When there’s nothing to do – do it. It’s actually quite easy. I sometimes sit, but more often recline. I might have a tea or a ginger beer, there may be music. Then I be. Sometimes I’ll deliberately practice […]

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