Drunk on art

Ray Bradbury famously said that ‘you must stay drunk (on your art) so reality cannot destroy you’. To be honest, when you’re drinking freshly twizzled cocktails, admiring art by Andy Warhol and Louise Borgeois, and being plied with New York style pizza slices, reality seems like a pretty good place to be – drunk or otherwise.

Stepping into the launch of the Absolut Art Collection at the Ray Hughes Gallery in Surry Hills, you would be forgiven for wondering if you had taken a ride on a ‘Back to the Future’ hovercraft and found yourself in downtown New York circa 1980s. Silver armchairs, Mario Bros pinball machines and colourful artworks recreate the street style made famous by Andy Warhol’s factory. The fact that the artwork descriptions can only be accessed by flashing your iphone QR reader at the wall (which provided us with hours of novelty factor entertainment) is one of the few hints that it is, in fact, 2011.

Read more about the launch and details in my post on behalf of Ms Darlinghurst at Eat Drink Play.


An apple a day...

They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away. But the humble apple has faced tough competition in recent years, with trendy “super foods” like goji berries, wheat grass, and pomegranates hogging the limelight through slick marketing campaigns.

Luckily for our health (and our tastebuds), two Bondi locals have partnered with Batlow Apples to create Batlow Premium Cider. Handcrafted from a blend of 100% Australian-grown apples, brothers Rich and Sam Coombes are helping us fend off the doctors by creating a far more exciting way to fill our daily apple quotas.

When a health scare led Rich to quit his high-pressure job in the corporate world, he decided it was time to revive an old dream to create his own product – “it struck me that life was too short and precious to be doing something I didn’t love”. Enjoying drinks with mates on Bondi’s grassy knoll one summer afternoon, he realised that there was no cider equivalent of a Coopers beer – locally made and premium quality.

He and Sam contacted Batlow Apples, and so began the journey to create what has the potential to become an iconic Australian cider (watch this space!).

Read my interview with Rich Coombes on Eat Drink Play & find out how you can get your daily fix!

Love at first twist

In the same way that the 2009 liquor licensing laws changed the face of Sydney’s watering holes, frozen yoghurt has knocked ice cream off its summer pedestal and is fast becoming our dessert of choice – whether we’re at the beach, taking a post dinner stroll in Darlinghurst or craving a cheeky afternoon snack.

With Wow Cow in Darlinghurst first introducing us to the concept of breakfast for dessert, Bondi's Twisted creates a new experience for frozen yoghurt aficionados with its focus on organic, natural and sustainable products.

Check out my adventures with Twisted Froyo on behalf of Ms Darlinghurst’s Eat Drink Play.

Twisted Frozen Yoghurt on Urbanspoon

When I have time...

How many times have you thought to yourself “when I have a little more time I would love to learn photography / write a blog / read more about politics”.

We’ve considered taking life-drawing classes, dreamed about learning to sail or surf, resolved to reinvent our non-work wardrobe and re-introduce a creative flair. When we have a bit more time.

On Friday evenings at apr├Ęs-work watering holes like Ryan's Bar and Ivy, we blend and mingle in our collars, blazers and celebrate the advent of the weekend. We air-kiss, shake hands and share drinks with like-minded young professionals, the ties loose and the shirts colourful in recognition that we’ve survived the week. We’ve closed the deals, reviewed the reports, turned off the laptops (though not the blackberry – never the blackberry).

Back in uni days, with time on our hands to write the blank pages of our future, we kept up to date with the latest fashions and invented our own. We experimented with music, discovered bars off the beaten track and supported friends’ bands playing at dodgy RSLs. We found excitement and difference down random lanes and sketched drawings of the characters that we found there. We volunteered for charities, learned about other cultures and looked forward to the future. We were all exploring, discovering and creating our individual worlds, in our own way.

Five to seven years later, and we have all chosen different paths. Those of us in the corporate world have been both thrilled by new intellectual challenges and bored by monotonous days in the office. We can walk the walk, click our heels in the lobby, make PC jokes and small talk with executives in the lift, and look fabulous in a suit.

We still love music, but haven’t had as much time to listen to the new band our friends are tweeting about. Absolutely love reading, but have banned ourselves from picking up novels until we’ve passed the mandatory technical exam for work. Can’t really justify spending as much on quirky fashions when five days a week demand classic and tailored “business casual”.

And after five years of focusing on our careers, we’re starting to realise that parts of ourselves have been neglected. That we could have another 30 years of working ahead of us – but there is more than that. The creative spark, the other dimensions of our personality, the colour – they’re still there. Lying dormant, slightly neglected, but slowly reemerging. We remember that life doesn’t have to be confined to evenings and weekends, that Wednesday wasn’t always a hump day.

I have friends who have recently quit jobs for a variety of reasons - pursue photography, start their own business, spend a few years travelling. For those of us who enjoy our jobs but know that there is more to us than just a square in a suit – how can we find a balance?