Rolf Harris and Lang Hancock

Perth’s St Georges Terrace has lots of interesting features. Possibly the least noticed are the plaques of prominent West Aussies which are set into the footpath. They were a part of the 150th celebration of the founding of the swan River Colony.

I was walking along the the Terrace other day and I spotted this.


I instantly felt anger at the man who has betrayed all his fans, of whom I was one. I wondered how long this plaque would remain where it is. The Perth City Council has already spoken of removing it. The Rolf Harris plaque in his hoime town of Bassendean has already been stolen.

And now I know he has received a gaol term in excess of five years. One which is almost certainly a life sentence. Yet I am hearing a lot of people complaining that it isn’t severe enough. What would be a suitable sentence? Possibly one of the Texan sentences of 1,000 years? Sorry, folks, at 84, five years is almaost as effective. Once he dies, it doesn’t matter how long his sentence was.

Anyway that is just a personal thing. I agree he needed to be given a custodial sentence. Execution is possibly to strong a sentence but more that a life sentence? Why?

So I walked on. Just a few paces on and two years later I spotted this plaque.


Lang Hancock, mining entreprenuer. Gina’s Dad. Owner and developer of the Wittenoom Blue Asbestos Mine.

You know Blue Asbestos. The mineral which causes mesothelioma, the totally incurable and extremely aggressive cancer. Blue Asbestos which has killed thousands of people and will continue to kill thousands more. When it was proven that Blue Asbestos was a poison, back in the 1930′s, Hancock continued business as usual for decades. When the outcry became too great he did not close the mine down. He sold it!

Yet Lang was never charged with murder. There has never been a move to have his plaque removed. He is still treated as some form of God in the history of Western Australia.

I was struck by the irony. Harris has molested a “few”, almost certainly less that 100 women. None of whom died because of that molestation. Hancock, a murderer,  inserted a poison into the environment which will end up killing 10′s of thousands of people because of that poison.

Harris, the sexual predator, will have his plaque taken away. Hancock, the murderer, will have his plaque remain.


There were Butterflies

There were butterflies in Perth on Monday.

In the Cultural Centre where there was a celebration.





The Ugliness of Modern

I was going to add the word ‘Architecture’ to the title. Then I thought about this building.

In Milligan St, Perth


A Lego building. Hundreds of replicated blocks stacked on top of and beside each other.

Ashamed of the complete lack of any redeeming features, the assemblers decided that a couple of rectangular splashes of colour would help soften this very geometric, masculine edifice.

When that failed they decided to add some feminine curves. In cold stainless steel.

That failed as well.

The effect is that of a flaccid penis.

I Took A Walk Yesterday

Actually, I often take walks but yesterday I walked with my eyes open.

This is some of what I saw.

I detrained at Perth Staion and discovered the new walk UNDERNEATH the station and all its rail lines which took me directly to Murray St. in under 300 comfortable metres.

Still brand new, no shops or stalls along the sides which I am quite sure our avaricious Government will rectify as soon as possible.

But it does look like a skateboarders dream!

perth walk1

Then I walked up Hay Street towards Elizabeth’s Secondhand Bookstore where I find much of the “Street Wisdom” I post on Wednesdays and Sundays.

I also find wandering through a book store, new or secondhand, is therapeutic and renewing.

On my way, I spotted something magical!

perth walk2

Yes, I know it is “Just another old building”. The sort of building modern developers would love to pull down and replace with 103 levels of blank concrete and glass.

But I spotted who built it.

JK Rowlings must have released one of her characters into Muggledom.

Can’t quite see who?

perth walk2a

A few steps later, I found one of those marvellous “Pop-up” shop fronts which are becoming a feature of the changing face of my city.

perth walk3

I had to take a look around in this temporary wonderland. It is only open for seven days.

perth walk6

I didn’t buy any of the posters which were available.

Then I walked across Hay St to His Majesty’s Theatre to see what they have on stage at the moment.

And I know several people who would love to see this!

perth walk4

I must take more walks with my eyes open!

101 Things To Do With A Swan River #16

I’m afraid someone has found the plug and pulled it.

The Swan River is draining. In fact it is nearly empty!

This was the scene at Maylands yesterday.


Hidden Perth

A little coffee shop with toasted sarnies on the side.

Hidden in a laneway where I used to sneak into the Grand Theatre via an occasionally unguarded side door.


101 Things To Do With A Swan River #15

You can mow lawns alongside its banks.


101 Things To Do With A Swan River #14

You can sit in it for so long that things begin to grow on you!


This is a part of a jetty upstream from Claisebrooke.

Kings Park Spring

Kings Park is ablaze with colour as the bush blooms burgeon.


Yet not all the beauty is in technicolour.

The deeply veined leaves of this Royal Hakea have a special beauty against a brilliant blue sky.

royal hakea

101 Things To Do With A Swan River #13

I started paddling the Orange Pearl again today.

Just enough to make sure she had not been holed during Winter and to find out that my shoulders need a lot of paddling practice! groan, moan, whinge, groan again

Her flag was as limp as I felt!

On my little trip I discovered yet another thing you can do with a Swan River.

You can drill holes in the bottom to see if it can be drained!

While I hope it cannot be done, my shoulders seem to be saying,


Pull the plug!

It seems to be a part of Colin Barnett’s “Bigger Picture”

He wants a walkway across the river to his new stadium so he wants the river drained enabling pedestrians to cross easily.

A Splash of Colour on a Gray Day

Splash of colour

Looking across the Swan River towards the Burswood Complex

101 Things To Do With A Swan River #12

On a calm morning you can find unexpected beauty on the surface.

Interesting patterns on a smooth Swan River.


I looked up and realised it was a reflection of the walkway railing on the Windan Bridge.


101 Things To Do With A Swan River #11

You can float like a Hot Cross Jellyfish

These are non-stinging but quite visible. There is another, almost transparent species, again non-stinging, which was often used in “jelly-fish fights” by teen aged boys to the squeals of teen aged girls. Back in the days when swimming in the Swan was a compulsory part of growing up in Perth.

I make no comment about how I know this fact.



101 Things To Do With A Swan River #10

You can get hay-fever on it!

For those of us who are susceptible, Bullrushes in full flower create a sneezing Hell!.



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