Go and talk some sense into The Lazy Aussie!

23 12 2007

The Lazy Aussie is considering expanding the terms of reference of his fantastic blog, The Worst of Perth, to canvass “worsts” from around the world. And as someone who spent most of his life in a quarter of Perth replete with potential Worst of Perth fodder, I think this move will be an absolute disaster. Like Iron Chef USA. Like Good News Week when it moved to Channel Ten.

Of course it would be easy to find examples in any part of the world of the kind of aesthetic and architectural sins featured on the Worst of Perth. Not five minutes from the door of my apartment here in Japan there are enough howlers to keep a similar blog going for months, but I’d prefer to leave that to someone who has grown up in the area. Why? Because the people who are bound to get the most out of a blog like TWOP are those who are forced to look at a familiar landscape with new eyes. Perth’s crappiness is a matter of lore, but I never realised until TWOP came along how funny this could be.

To be honest, I also have a nostalgic/sentimental reason for opposing TWOP’s mooted change of focus. I grew up in Perth’s northern suburbs, in what is known as the “mortgage belt.” The houses date back to the 1970s, to the days when “Mission Brown” was deemed a tasteful colour, when ensuite bathrooms were optional extras, when people actually went out of their way to cover their walls in wallpaper and their floors in lino. The kitchens had “breakfast bars.” The predominant aesthetic was DIY and functional. If an extension to a house–say, a games room out the back–was built with bricks of a colour different from those used to build the original house, no-one cared. If weather and time eventually wore a hole in the cement used to bind those bricks, that’s what old socks were for. The first house I rented in this area had bright orange (albeit threadbare and worn) carpet. Orange. They don’t make mortgage belts like that anymore.

Anyway, The Lazy Aussie is looking for a way to integrate two separate blogs–one on the worst of Perth, the other on the worst of Earth–rather than dilute a great idea. So, if there are any code-savvy readers who can help him out, the relevant post is here.

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6 responses

23 12 2007
The Worst of Perth

Hi mate. Well i was a little taken aback at the strength of feeling to keep Perth worst pure! TWOP is being linked to blogs around the world (atheist and design blogs mostly! Who would have thought?) and I want to be able to do something for the many enthusiastic people who write to me who are not from Perth. What I think might keep everyone happy is to make it a challenge. Perth versus the world. Perth thinks it has the world’s crappiest in many categories, but if someone around the world has something they consider worse than an existing post on TWOP, I’ll let them make their case, even if to be howled down by the Perth mob. How does that sound? like Good news week moving to Channel 10? That’s very funny. I hope it is not just the photos that make it. i have been a stand-up comedian for about 15 years also. Thanks for your support.

23 12 2007
AV

What I think might keep everyone happy is to make it a challenge. Perth versus the world. Perth thinks it has the world’s crappiest in many categories, but if someone around the world has something they consider worse than an existing post on TWOP, I’ll let them make their case, even if to be howled down by the Perth mob. How does that sound?

Not good, since you asked for my opinion, but I don’t want to tell you how to run your blog. I don’t doubt that the world has much worse to offer than Perth in many categories, but as a Perth temporary ex-resident I can relate to examples of Perth’s dodginess in a way I never could with interstate or international crap.

23 12 2007
The Lazy Aussie

Well just every now and then, not all the time. I’m talking about something like this one, which has has been one of the most popular posts.
http://perthworst.wordpress.com/2007/11/17/cultural-cringe-vs-fed-square/

23 12 2007
AV

Well just every now and then, not all the time.

I think that would work much better.

And the interesting thing about your “Cultural Cringe” post is that it demonstrates that, as much as Fed Square is the subject of derision in Melbourne, it still manages to be classier and more stylish than the Perth Cultural Centre.

If I make take the opportunity to suggest what I think would be a great idea for a Worst of Perth post . . . . If you have access to the West Australian’s archives, how about a post featuring all of its annual front page features detailing the Bold New Plan For Revitalising Perth’s Foreshore? There should be a good 15 to 20 years worth of material there. My strong suspicion is that there are no plans to revamp the foreshore and never have been, but I guess on slow news days it makes for good copy.

23 12 2007
The Lazy Aussie

Well as you know, Perth people don’t want anything. No, they want something, but not that – or that. It is the same for art or foreshore development or anything. We want something, but not that. There are many things in The West that are worthy to cover.

24 12 2007
hokusan

Lazy Aussie, it seems very clear to me that the success of TWOP relies heavily on your particular brand of aesthetic and wit. Whilst it is true that you have hit a nerve, it is your comments that keep me coming back, they are incredibly amusing and often insightful. The recent copycat “worst of Adelaide” has none of the charm of TWOP [sorry TWOA] and it seems clear from its stats no audience either. I feel very confident that whatever you decide to do with your blog it will be just as engaging and I will certainly be logging in.
Perth V’s …is a great idea, it keeps Perths’ worst front and centre while in addition encouraging that other great Australian quality – smug competitiveness. Go L.A.

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