Quick introduction, before we get stuck into what’s making waves around the globe. My name is Sidney Cider and I’ve recently been appointed Woroni’s new international art, travel, fashion and culture writer. It gives me great pleasure taking over from my colleagues, Ken and Stacey, who have really done some of Woroni’s best work over the past year. In farewelling these two, how could I not mention their fine report on Chernobyl’s dating scene which won numerous miscellaneous online awards. It was also Woroni’s most-read story last year, which I think spoke to our Canberran audience in a way that no other report from Chernobyl has to date. I send my best regards to Ken and Stacey as they recover from acute radiation sickness.
Given the popularity of this section, Woroni’s expanding budget and the general direction of news media, our aim is to increase the number of cities, expensive hotels and decadent lunches I attend, to provide less content in a more compacted (and opinionated) form. The section will now be titled ‘Love, Hate and Indifference’ where – not dissimilar to Eat, Pray, Love – I will be bringing the world of art, fashion, travel and culture to riens personnes outside the champagne bubble. The strength of my views, as validated during high my school debating years, and the worldliness I picked up from a single family vacation to New Zealand, makes this your must-read Woroni section.
Rome is one of Europe’s dirtiest cities, so much so, that one could easily forget it was once the birthplace of ancient Italy. Today, observing the Colosseum, you’d think it’d be better used as a rubbish storage facility. Tourists on the exterior take little notice as they meander to the next run-of-the-mill monument to capture a selfie never to be looked at again. Yet, despite the untidiness, and not even mentioning the sleazy men, Rome sparkles. Nowhere in the world have I been so blessed as to have my coffees accompanied by a small San Pellegrino (also known as sparkling water, agua con gas, or eau pétillante). I’ll take a dump of a city any day just to wash down my espresso with a glass of its finest.
Closer to home, in Braddon, I was hoping to spend some quality time with The Blonde (my significant other) bar-hopping around the slew of trendy places that have popped up over the last year. You know the ones: the cocktail bar doubling as a speakeasy, or the brewery that feels like a bike shop. However, what was supposed to be a casual weekday Date Night had the intensity of being stuck between the sets of Love Actually and 10 Things I Hate About You. Each venue teemed with awkward couples, radiating all the nervous tension of Valentine’s Day.
This is all Tinder’s fault. Hip dominions are being swamped and subsequently ruined by these faux daters. You can pick them a mile away: over-dressed, overly nervous, pretending to listen intently whilst wistfully gazing into each other’s eyes, replying only in superlatives (that’s so amazing!) The atmosphere has gone from habitable Earth to an asphyxiating Mars.
What were casual hangouts have now been transformed into anxious interview rooms, where potential couples try to outdo surrounding matches by appearing more attractive, funny, suitable, etc. This would be ok if it was only one couple here or there, but literally every venue in Braddon on a random Tuesday night is bursting with hyped-up sexual tension. Not only did I feel under dressed (which I never am), but I felt as though I actually had to pretend to engage with The Blonde. I felt compelled to use exaggerated gesticulations and vivid facial expressions, as everyone else around me predatorily lent in towards their partner ready to suck their face off.
The timing couldn’t have been worse for us last month, as Woroni had organised an interview with Kendall Jenner in LA. Considering the hoo-ha over the recent Pepsi campaign, Jenner had to cancel our interview. On the bright side, she did keep us informed of some upcoming commercials she’ll be involved in – similarly seeking to promote prominent brands whilst cleverly subverting other civil rights movements. In an exclusive, Woroni can reveal that a prominent bus manufacturer is casting Jenner as Rosa Parks, to promote their new line of ecofriendly coaches.
In all honestly though, I don’t get what all the fuss is about. By all objective standards, the Pepsi ad was hardly Kendall’s best performance, but I wouldn’t say it was worse than Keeping Up With the Kardashians. The advertising format restricts what actors can convey, without having much time to showcase their true talent. Personally, I think a 15-minute extended version of the ad would have worked more in Jenner’s favour. So, in considering the hottest and most divisive topic of Hollywood conversation this month, I’m at a loss as to how this mediocre performance caused such outrage.
That’s all for today, darling – I’ll leave you with my style tip of the week. For all those students planning an exchange next semester and wanting to impress new exotic companions, the current trend is spending big on airport accoutrements. That’s right: luggage, of the Louis Vuitton ilk. It has become the new quick way to embody your value – in other words your socioeconomic status. So throw away the passport, forget your wallet, don’t even worry about filling the bag; because if The Darjeeling Limited has taught us anything, it’s that every great adventure requires exquisite impedimenta.