April 25, 2015

Lest we forget: warfare in our own region

No one in my close family has been to war, so I've never felt like international conflicts were that close to my life. So for me, domestic conflicts have more immediate relevance.

The traditional languages of the Katherine and Roper regions aren't endangered just because parents decided their kids didn't need to know their language anymore. There are huge social and historical forces at play. The warfare that occurred when Europeans first came to this area is one of those major factors. The stories are there - in books, newspapers and oral histories. They're not hard to find. It's just that most people aren't ready to know or want to know.

I was surprised and impressed to see Wally Wilfred and Jill Daniels' entry to 2014 Katherine Prize called Olden Days, depicting a scene of local warfare. I'd never seen them paint this theme before. It's a wonderful painting about our awful and very close-to-home unofficial wars. Lest we forget.

Olden Days (detail) by Wally Wilfred and Jill Daniels. 2014.
Olden Days. By Wally Wilfred and Jill Daniels. 2014.
 

April 17, 2015

Homonym!

This is a bit random, but I had to share. I've been lolling and beating my fist on the table all night at this video (yes, literally). I had no idea a 17 second cutaway on a TV show could be so LOL-worthy. It really tickles my fancy ... the idea of this cruel gameshow called "Homonym":


The cleverness of 30 Rock is only just dawning on me, about 10 years too late. But my appreciation went up a whole nother level when I saw they'd gone all multilingual on the idea and done Homonym in Farsi (Persian)! It's gold:


I love that the presenter is just as cruelly funny in Farsi and the Farsi-speaking contestant is brilliant too. I'm very glad that someone put a translation on YouTube. It's goes like this:
Presenter: The next term: milk/tap/lion (all pronounced شیر  'sheer' in Farsi - a triple homonym)
Contestent: Sure. "شیر". Like a large cat?
Presenter: No, the other one.
Contestant: Go to hell! (Literally "soil on your head" as in entombed, or simple "die")
Presenter: [Maniacal laugh]
El-Oh-El.