Monday, March 17, 2008

Melbourne Memories! Part 1: Wednesday

So last week I went to Melbourne for the first time since I was pretty young, young enough to have spent it being taken places by my dad and my friend's dad. So I was really looking forward to spending some time exploring the city.

Arrivals, shitty fries, Nick Cave, and ballin' with Josh

On my first day, Wednesday, I landed in Melbourne nice and early, and was in the CBD by midday. Josh wasn't gonna finish work until midday, so i stashed my goods in an overpriced locker at the bus stop and proceeded up Bourke st, planning to see what I saw and enjoy the city.

One of the first places that I already knew I wanted to see, I ran into after about 5 minutes. Missing Link is the best record store i saw in Melbourne, and it totally beats anything in Sydney. As me and Zohara have discussed on this blog before, i've recently got a turntable, so the huge vinyl selection made me really excited, and probably took way too much emphasis away from the rest of the city for a while. I decided to come back later so that I wouldn't have to cart my goods around the city all day, and made my way further up Bourke st.

After looking through some shops, I decided that it was time to check out the Nick Cave exhibition at the Arts Centre that I had been hearing all about... but first, I was hungry. I had heard a lot of mixed things about Lord Of The Fries, but ever since initially hearing the hype when they had opened, I had been intrigued by their interesting name and promises of the ultimate fries. So I got myself a box of fries, chose the "asian" sauce, picked up a big slurpee from the 7/11 next door, and walked down to Federation Square to eat it in the sun.

It turned out to be a heartbreaking experience. They weren't just mediocre - they were the worst fries i've ever tasted. Honestly, for all of their hyperbole about their amazing, highly-developed fry-making methods, they completely ruined it. I've never been to a fast food joint who has completely failed at deep frying fries, but ironically the worst fries I have ever tasted come from the outlet that decides to make them their focus. It's hard to describe these fries - they were certainly unique. They had almost no flavour, but had this strange, wispy kind of texture, and made you feel sick after about 6. I ended up soldiering through about 1/4 of the box before throwing it out, cherishing the palette cleansing qualities of sour apple slurpee, and proceeding across the Yarra to check out the Nick Cave exhibition.

And it was a fantastic exhibition. The free entry gets you a whole lot of amazing artefacts from Cave's career - there were original sketches for gig posters and cover art, hand-scrawled lyrics, shelves of books that had inspired Nick, little statues and monuments that he had bought/created/otherwise obtained during his career, and a whole lot more. The large aisle full of big Nick Cave photos serve as a huge reminder that Nick is indeed a sex god, and the little doors that revealed monologues by Nick about his career were really entertaining. As a Nick Cave fan, I was pretty much in heaven - the exhibition really did give equal weighting to each stage of his career, which was a great move - it made his progression from his Birthday Party days to where he is now, and everything in between, much clearer. It's also worth noting that his wife is so, so, so attractive. I had no idea.

After the exhibition, I caught up with Josh and we went back to him and Courtney's crib in Kensington, which is awesome - blows everything my Sydney crew live in out of the water. Courtney was out for the night so we went out to his local for dinner and beers before heading back to his. In true playa style, he had some Hennessy left over, so we had some Henny & coke and watched Superbad. After that, I absolutely destroyed him at Wii Tennis until, after he continued to ply me with alcohol, he finally won a couple.

Those famous laneways.

More like Lord of the Fail.

Slurpee on the left was so much better than fries on the right.

Josh's hairy arm and pimp hand.


And that's my first day in Melbourne. I've got to get up in 6 hours for my first day back at uni, so i'll continue the story at a more opportune time.

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