‘West Coast Beach 4’, Venice Beach, California, Phone photo by Alicia Bee © 2012.


Just when I plan to visit our Western Australian sister, for work and play it has been named the World’s Deadliest city for shark attacks.
On Saturday a 4 metre Great White Shark they have dubbed Brutus killed a surfer called Ben Linden near Wedge Island 180 kilometres north of Perth. He had a girlfriend called Alana Noakes, and Facebook tributes and personal messages have been pouring out from friends suffering from another good dose of communal grief.
This is now a grief and media process in the well known story of a dead surfer or recently deceased musician of the young and free Australian landscape.
Cabinet-maker Ben Linden was also a singer and bassist in Perth band Fools Rush In, which are featured on radio triple J’s unearthed segment and probably getting a few new hits today.
This is the fifth shark attack death in ten months in Perth area waters, and has highlighted the heightened panic and alarm call suggestions to cull larger sharks to end the human toll.
The Great White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias) is listed as vulnerable and migratory under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

I am going to do this shark themed editorial lightly, then ask you to read my daily poem at the bottom.
I’m not going to talk about environmental issues in this blog, but will discuss music, and later the amount of teeth on The Great White shark because they have many rows.

In the middle bit, I will be presently political interviews with Greens Candidate Cathy Oke, and Labor Candidate Jennifer Kanis as they discuss the Melbourne Seat before their July 21 2012 By-election next weekend, which has nothing to do with sharks in WA.

Maybe we could just put a shark net down Cottesloe Beach and keep swimming during winter in warm Perth?
I wonder how big they could make that shark net around the areas that humans would want to inhabit on this large island continent.
It is the makings of a beautiful public landscape based art project worthy of some funding. (Note: Shark Nets are not considered an option because whales and other big fish and wildlife get caught).
I have a personal theory that sharks are not fans of jetskis, and the human drive to inhabit big waves in the middle of ocean territories.

Maybe Robert Drewe who wrote about waiting for the next shark death story in ‘Shark Net’, could put his binoculars on the coastline and look out for sharks with us?
Robert Drewe was a Melbourne born journalist, who grew up in WA and ‘cut his teeth’ on the paper The West Australian and the shark coastline.
Robert Drewe then moved back to Melbourne.
Melbourne > Perth > Melbourne on domestic jets.
In between my Internet research on the shark attack issue with Facebook chats and movie tangents from Shark Net, I have just been grading this Year 10 English Literature Creative response to Robert Drewe’s Shark Net by AshleyKz, and was attracted to the punk Little Red Riding Hood song by Bowling For Soup.
Once again I am very scared of the intelligence of kids today that keep on graduating out of high school!


Greens Candidate Cathy Oke and Labor Candidate Jennifer Kanis compete against each other and Australian Sex Party leader Fiona Patten (interviewed in the last issue of this blog) as hopefuls to replace Bronwyn Pike after her May resignation. This July 21 2012 By-election will be a big birth for Melbourne, and everyone is watching.
Even the great white colorblind sharks of Western Australia.
All three strong females will be fighting with votes for the same job.
There are 16 candidates all up, many Independents, A Family First and Australian Christians representative; and this time, there are no Liberals in the game.
It might to safe as houses, to suggest that this election for the Melbourne Seat in the Victorian Legislative Assembly, will be a girl born on July 21 2012; and voters will be choosing a party that they believe right for a new year in Melbourne from Labor, The Greens and The Australian Sex Party.
I have tried to develop the different personalities of Fiona Patten, Cathy Oke and Jennifer Kanis, by asking simple questions about Melbourne and fashion.
It was planned to be light and not to discuss serious issues; but introduce people who you may not know from established long term careers in politics.
Some of the questions used in the interviews are specific for each person, others were recycled to show how each politician reacts differently to each question, in order to correct any bias in the stories.
For instance look below at the answers when I ask the politicians how many buildings there are in Melbourne.
I think it shows how they approach Maths problems, economics and their view of the Melbourne city skyline and therefore planning issues.
I was hoping to get all politicians to stare at the skyline before the July 2012 Melbourne By Election, and remember the picture they saw, by counting its buildings before the city changes once again onward into the millennium.


ALICIA BEE: What is your favorite place to sit in seat of Melbourne? What is the view?
CATHY OKE: There are lots of great places. Walking and stopping in Royal Park in the early evening is fantastic – and it has a great view of the city skyline.
ALICIA BEE: Math test; how many buildings does the Melbourne Skyline have? (We will be grading your answer).
CATHY OKE: I cheated – the Internet tells me there are about 60 buildings with a height of 100m or more.
ALICIA BEE: If you have a friend come from overseas or interstate where do you tell them to go in Melbourne?
CATHY OKE: I tell them to go see some local live music! There are some fantastic venues in the city and inner north supporting independent local bands.
ALICIA BEE: Have you been wearing much ‘green’ color in your fashion? Do you find you are conscious of the color in fashion?
Have you considered a ‘khaki election’?
CATHY OKE: I have a bit of Green in my wardrobe, but this campaign is so busy that fashion hasn’t been my top priority! The great thing about this campaign is how engaged voters have been in policy detail.
ALICIA BEE: Has anyone compared you to Natasha Stott Despoja? How old are you – not about to retire like Bob Brown? Nor Bronwyn Pike?
CATHY OKE: No, no-one has compared me to Natasha Stott-Despoja and no I’m not planning on retiring any decade soon!
ALICIA BEE: What does the Legislative Assembly do?
CATHY OKE: The Legislative Assembly is quite similar to the Federal House of Representatives, but with a few differences. It invests a lot of power in the government of the day, but there are lots of ways that all members can participate in the making and amending of state laws. There are 88 members representing an electorate each, and an enormous amount of any MP’s work is focused on representing their local constituents. I’m really looking forward to that role, and in working to improve the way that Melbourne residents can engage with the Parliamentary decisions that affect their lives.
ALICIA BEE: This seat seems to be a fight of the female powers after Bronwyn Pike left, how ethical has the descriptions of female politicians been so far? Have you heard any name calling of any candidates?
CATHY OKE: In this election campaign there have been a few personalised campaign messages which have detracted from the contest of ideas, but unlike the sort of vitriol targeted at the Prime Minister, I don’t think the attacks have been gender-based.
Thanks for the questions! You can read all about my policies and vision for Melbourne at my campaign site:


ALICIA BEE: What is your favorite place to sit in seat of Melbourne? What is the view?
JENNIFER KANIS: At the Flagstaff at Flagstaff Gardens. It’s a place where I like to take a break during the working day. I have a view north, south, east and west, I can watch people exercise (and indeed take a walk myself once I have finished my lunch) and I can contemplate the beautiful Moreton Bay Fig Tree.
ALICIA BEE: Math test; how many buildings does the Melbourne Skyline have? ( We will be grading your answer).
JENNIFER KANIS: It all depends where you look – from where I am now I say 40.
ALICIA BEE: If you have a friend come from overseas or interstate where do you tell them to go in Melbourne?
JENNIFER KANIS: Well, they have to start the day with a Melbourne coffee. At the moment I’m getting my morning coffee from Pepper in Flemington but there are so many great coffee places they could choose to visit. For sports lovers I would tell them to start the day at Federation Square and then wander down Birrarung Marr to the MCG for a game of AFL. If they don’t want to go to the footy they could visit a gallery or the museum or just spend a few hours at a bar or two.
If they have kids I would suggest a visit to ArtPlay. At the end of the day they should head into China Town for dumplings or Carlton for a bowl of pasta. Then, if they still have some energy, I would suggest they go and experience some live music at one of our many and varied live music venues.
ALICIA BEE: Have you been wearing the attitude of the Labor Party combined into your fashion? Do you ever wear working class blue? Have you ever worn army green? Do you find you are conscious of being a politician when dressing in fashion to go down the street?
JENNIFER KANIS: When not at work you will find me in jeans (or a fetching lawn bowls uniform on a Saturday afternoon).
For work I am usually in something I can mix with a jacket for meetings.
I do have a blue singlet top which I have just about worn out and I have never worn army green! I have lived in my suburb for nearly 15 years so I am not self conscious when going down the street – I figure most people have, by now, seen me at both my fashion best and fashion worst.
ALICIA BEE: Has anyone compared you to other female politicians?
JENNIFER KANIS: Not that I know of.
ALICIA BEE: This seat seems to be a fight of the female powers after Bronwyn Pike left, how ethical has the descriptions of female politicians been so far? Have you heard any name calling of any candidates?
JENNIFER KANIS: I haven’t heard of any name calling yet, and I hope that we have all moved on from the days when a female political aspirant is treated any differently from any other candidate.
ALICIA BEE: How much will the Greek vote matter in this seat, is it another Greek election? I saw in Greek Reporter that they said that you were a Greek Australian and a ‘Greek American’, can we confirm that you are in fact a ‘Greek Australian’.
JENNIFER KANIS: Yes, I am definitely a Greek/Italian Australian – my father is Greek and my mother is Italian and I was born in Melbourne.
ALICIA BEE: Have you always been a Labor party person? Can you explain your recent endorsement, and whether you were elected as a City of Melbourne councillor for a political party-(some people may be confused or not understand the difference)
JENNIFER KANIS: I’ve always been a Labor person. My first political views were formed around the kitchen table where we discussed everything from the importance of ensuring everyone had access to education to the diplomatic recognition of China.
I have been a Labor Party member since 1999. The Labor Party decided not to endorse candidates in the City of Melbourne elections in 2008 when I was elected as a councillor. In 2012 I was pre selected as the endorsed Labor Candidate for the state seat of Melbourne after Bronwyn Pike announced her retirement.


This is a different recording of Waz E James, low-fi, finished and easy listening. You can hear it in the way the band had to take a back seat to the recordings. The new vocals suggest a closed mouth Bob Dylan, the singing from that period post Christianity from the late 70s onwards.
This mouth sounds with the implied gravel that makes for comparison to Tom Waits, ticking all the boxes for US producer John Beland (The Flying Burrito Brothers) who made contact over the Internet and agreed to work on this recording.
Noisy Trucks was recorded in Melbourne and Brenham Texas, and then mastered in Colorado.
I remember Waz E James playing really long sets at The Good Country Club, sometimes blues and country versions of his songs last up to 10 or 15 minutes. These long songs make the space of brackets last longer when artists are required to perform double sets a night for a gig.
Now on Noisy Trucks Waz E James has written a collection of short songs suitable for air play.
They might be 3 or 4 minutes here, but later they could flesh out to be bigger in a live set.
Here lyrical themes of staying up all night on drugs, suit junkie lines for truck drivers, and religion on the streets is signposted by Angels.
14 songs of a newer setlist and catalogue library.
Songs about Ruby Hunter and Shiloh (Baghdad) shows Waz E James is writing social comment in his country folk songs.


Busy Melbourne band Red Ink have just got back from the UK. They are set to release Euphoria from EP The Colour Age, after their debut ‘Catching A Killer’.
Euphoria was produced by Craig Harnath and Jez Giddings of HotHouse Studios (Wilco, Cut Copy, Oasis).
Red Ink will be launching Euphoria;
CATS at Rocket Bar in Adelaide on Friday 3 August,
Ding Dong Lounge in Melbourne on Friday 17 August,
Cobra Kai at Oh Hello in Brisbane on Thursday 6 September,
Upstairs at The Beresford Hotel in Sydney on Saturday 8 September.


Hip hop influenced sounds and live art installations from inner city illustrators and artists are part of a big event at The Laundry in the name of popular London and Amsterdam night ‘Le Scratch’.
Watch the vimeo package they produced here;
NEXT EVENT: Friday 27th July
On The Decks: DMC Champ & outright DJ Don Benny B.Two, UK guest DJ – Russ Ryan, duo Palindrome DJs, Ray & Ange spinning the latest mash ups in 90s hip hop & RnB with a little garage, bass, indie & soul throughout.
Artists & Creatives : Amos Duggan, 2nd Toe Collective & Le Scratch Light Lyrics.
Entry: $6 on door. $5 on list via
Address: 50 Johnston Street Fitzroy VIC 3065 & Times: 9pm-3am


Shark Teeth
By Alicia Bee

Shark city Perth,
The deadliest place in the world,
For shark attacks,
Tens of thousands of teeth lost.
Sharks replace teeth often,
Teeth embedded into the gum,
Not a jawbone.
You had a primary school project,
And you learnt that sharks,
Don’t have bones,
They have cartilage,
Like in the middle of the nose,
Or human earlobes.
The shark jumps out of the fish and chip shop poster,
Or restaurant specials menu board,
And attacks people like you;
Young swimmers at Cottesloe,
Fishermen on boats doing what they know,
And surfers, who had girlfriends,
Sharks killing people,
Like they were eating seals.
It is a real story,
Like in ‘Shark Net’,
A serial killer of multiple deaths,
People are laughing at the Steven Spielberg movie, again,
It has its own music and shark fin clause,
And the opening setting is a beautiful beach,
On prime real estate during the holidays.

Sharks loose teeth one at a time,
And they can be replaced in eight days,
Or sometimes months.
In their lifetime they will loose and make,
More than thirty five thousand teeth,
Each shark, has a different amount.
The great white shark has several rows of teeth,
Behind each other,
In case some break off,
Others move in to take their place.
They adjust in the cartilage
as the shark opens its jaw.
The great white shark,
often takes its prey,
from underneath with the bottom jaw,
Then takes hold with the top.
Each tooth has a sharp triangular shape,
with serrated edges for cutting.
The great white shark can have,
Three hundred teeth at any one time,
The great white can take hold,
Of a human body, with both jaws,
And shake its head backwards and forwards,
To tear at a large section of meat,
Which they might swallow whole.
The great white shark is one of the species,
Known to kill humans,
It normally feeds on large fish,
Mammals, and other creatures.

Some people get away,
And live to tell the tale,
Of fighting off the shark with fists,
Or a paddle or surfboard.
Some people have scars,
From the teeth of a shark,
You can see the mark,
On their leg as they tell their story,
In a documentary,
About the wild Australian continent,
For those extreme people,
Who like to take risks,
And those who laugh at crocodiles.
They do it for a living,
You have to understand,
The risk involved,
In chartered waters.
You have to learn to swim,
Like a disabled person,
With one arm,
While you are wrestling with the shark,
And holding your board.
Can you carry yourself with one arm,
Or one leg, if you had to?
Do you have the strength,
To hold yourself up in the water?
Or would a shark,
Be able to take you with one bite,
On one limb,
In a blood bath,
Covered up in the ocean,
That is full of salt water.