Dear Australia, It’s Okay to Celebrate Halloween

It’s my third Halloween in Australia. It’s not a popular holiday here, but according to the Australian social research company McCrindle, Halloween is growing in popularity with every generation. Those in Generation Y (aged 18-31) were far more likely to have celebrated Halloween in the past than Generation X (aged 32-46) and the Baby Boomers (aged 46-65). When asked whether they had ever celebrated Halloween before, 53% of Gen Ys had, compared to 45% of…

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Halloween & Day of the Dead Prep Party

It’s my third Halloween in Australia! It’s not a very popular holiday here, but I’m fortunate to have some people in my life who love Halloween and the Day of the Dead. Back in 2012, Theo and I hosted a pumpkin carving dinner party at our house and since then we’ve been gathering with my sister-out-law and her children to get ready for the big occasion. Last year, she made sugar skulls and we all gathered…

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Worldwide Photo Walk 2014

Last year, Theo and I attended the Worldwide Photo Walk and we loved it so decided to do it again. As the name suggests, Scott Kelby’s Annual Worldwide Photo Walk takes place in cities around the world. Photographers of all walks of life and skill levels gather to explore, shoot, and just hang out. Our local organiser was, once again, Robert Groom. Robert is a super nice, very skilled and creative photographer, and I know I…

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The Aboriginal Homeland

This is a fantastic video from photographer Amy Toensing on her mission to document the culture of the Aboriginal people for National Geographic. It’s fascinating and heartbreaking. You can see more images from Toensing here. Do you know of any good documentaries or books about Australia’s Aboriginal people?

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Street Fight, Aussie Style

I don’t enjoy seeing anyone – or anything – fight and while I didn’t particularly enjoy this video, I found it fascinating. I’ve never seen such a thing other than in Looney Tunes cartoons. Behold, street fighting, Aussie style. And then there’s these two arguing over who ate the last eucalyptus cookie and sounding like my dog’s squeaky rubber ball when it’s near the end of its life. I’ve heard koalas can be vicious and, judging…

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Australian-American Roundup

Foster’s, Australian for beer. Throw a shrimp on the barbie. Lies, all lies. As it turns out, Foster’s is an Australian brand of lager, but it was created by two Irish-American brothers who arrived in Melbourne from New York in 1886, and now it’s owned by a British brewing group. More importantly, Australians don’t actually drink it. Outback Steakhouse? Yeah, that’s not Aussie either, but it didn’t stop some poor customer from complaining. Outback Steakhouse is an Australian-themed…

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Metropolis Bookshop

A long time ago, my sister-out-law took me to this incredible bookshop. At the time, I didn’t know Melbourne and the location of this store did not register in my relocated brain. We walked there, stepped into the building, walked up three flights of stairs, browsed for an hour, paid for our purchases, walked out,  down the stairs, out of the building, and I had no idea where this bookshop was, no idea where I was. I only barely remembered the…

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Ello, How Long Will You Be Staying?

Have you heard about Ello? Ello is all the rage right now. Ello claims it was originally built as a private social network for artists to share their artwork, but so many people wanted to join it that it overwhelmed the servers. They built a public version of it. It was created by white bearded hipsters so it has a manifesto. It declares that, on Ello, we are not products, unlike on that other social…

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Advanced Style

“I think good style improves the environment for everybody.” Ari Seth Cohen roams the streets of New York looking for stylish older men and women. He documents them in his street style blog, Advanced Style, and they also appear in his coffee table book of the same name. Now there’s a documentary. Advanced Style examines the lives – and style – of seven New Yorkers between the ages of 62 and 95. Check out the trailer.…

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Stop Before It Gets Ugly Campaign

Recently I wrote about Australia’s drinking culture and one effort to change it – Hello Sunday Morning. Here’s another.  The NSW Government and agency JWT Sydney have launched a new high impact campaign called “Stop Before It Gets Ugly”. The campaign targets potential aggressors and those who can influence their behaviour in an attempt to reduce the number of people that are victim of alcohol-fuelled violence in NSW. JWT Sydney’s Executive Creative Director, Simon Langley,…

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The Blog as the Hub of the Social Media Spokes

When people ask me what’s the hardest part about blogging, I say it’s choosing a theme. After that, it’s making the time to actually sit down and write. I haven’t been blogging much lately. It’s not because I don’t have anything to say. I have plenty to say. There’s more going on my brain than my mouth and typing fingers can keep up with. I could tell you about my recent experience working in Melbourne, my brother-out-law’s…

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Hello Sunday Morning

Last week I attended Swarm Conference, Australia’s only conference for online community managers. I’ll spare you all the nerdtastic details as most of it doesn’t relate to the expat experience. There was one presentation, however, that is of interest and it’s also important. Jamie Moore talked about his community, Hello Sunday Morning, which aims to change the relationship Australians have with alcohol. I enjoy a cocktail from time to time, but I make no secret of the…

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