It’s better to give than receive

We had dinner with a friend recently. Someone my wife and I see through my work. It was a fabulous dinner with maybe more wine than we should have consumed for a work night with an early start the next day, however it was fun.

Whilst much of our talk with our friend has been about where I’m at with my life, this time as the conversation and wine flowed we turned to where my wife was at with her life.

Too often this involves running around after our adult children. Bluntly she seems to be their unpaid PA! Whilst I know she is happy to take on that role it seems that she doesn’t have enough of her own time. That was a theme we discussed at length.

Through the conversation my wife talked about writing.

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Spotify, Pandora, Kindle, CDs and Books

A few months ago I posed the rhetorical question “Have I really bought my last cd?”.

For the best part of six moths I happily went along listening to Spotify and Pandora as a paid subscriber. I discovered new music and old favourites. Amazingly convenient and almost no song not available. Rented music seemed the answer to my almost insatiable love of music.

Then a few weeks ago I had a change of heart sparked by a chance listening to a radio program with The Beatles biographer, Mark Lewisohn which sparked a desire to listen to The Beatles from start to finish and I wanted to own them, not rent them.

So it was back to the CD Shop and a resumption of a long term passion of purchasing music again. It was like running into an old friend. Seeing what was new, browsing the CD racks for something interesting and then the bargain bins with each visit usually resulting in a purchase. The result is that since purchasing The Beatles Boxed Set I have bought a few more CDs and it’s been fun. I doubt I will buy as many CDs as I did in the past, but I know for sure that my love for owning my music burns deep. Renting is convenient but just not the same.

The same chance listening to the radio

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The Beatles – Boxed Set and a Book

A few nights ago I was lying in bed listening to Overnights on the ABC and was captivated by Rod Qunin’s interview with Mark Lewisohn the author of a new Beatles biography, The Beatles: Tune In. I lay there completely captivated by the story of the group that like so many others had introduced me to music.

The book is the first part of a trilogy and it’s a healthy 980 pages as I found out when I went into Dymocks to buy it. I accompanied that purchase with the digitally remastered boxed set of The Beatles fourteen album set. Whilst I already owned many of the albums on CD and vinyl, I didn’t have them all, so the purchase was at least partially based on logic!

Abbey Road was the first LP I ever bought. I remember purchasing it with money given to me by my grandparents, who seemed not so much horrified that I was buying a Beatles record but that it cost $5.20. It must have been in late 1969 or early 1970. That started a love affair with music and The Beatles.

I am only a few pages into the book and enjoying learning about their family background and formative years. So many insights.

Walking to work, at work, the gym and at home, I have listened to The Beatles all week focussing on the early years. The joy of it. I started with Please Please Me a couple of listens and then onto With The Beatles, and Beatles For Sale, an album I always realise is better than I remembered. From there it was A Hard Days Night and Help. I’m just loving it.

When I started this post I didn’t plan to write about the individual songs thinking my focus would be on the the complete album. Well at least that was what I was thinking until Yesterday. It’s true classic, in its own way euphoric. Through a week’s listening to these early albums over and over again, enjoying each and everyone of them, Yesterday stands apart.

The Beatles music in this period seems simple and not at all pretentious. Hit after Hit, Love Song after Love Song. A collection of amazing songs driven off the back of the modern era’s greatest writing partnership Lennon and McCartney.

Whether next week is a progression to Rubber Soul and beyond remains an open question. For now it’s back to Help.

browney237.com is One

This post is all about me!

Reichstag, Berlin

Reichstag Berlin


It is a selfish reflection as browney237.com turns One. My blog is a personal writing space, and has reflected my own journey over the last twelve months: a period of transition.

I remember sitting at the beach house the Sunday after Adelaide narrowly lost the 2012 AFL Preliminary Final feeling quite unsettled. That feeling was not a product of the narrow loss but my continued reflection on my firm’s transition to retirement seminar, “Pinnacle”or as I refer to it, “God’s Waiting Room”, which we had attended a couple of weeks before.

I had also just finished reading, Herminia Ibarra’s “Working Identities” Continue reading

Book Review – Sicily, it’s Not Quite Tuscany

As well as the overall sense that Shamus Sillar’s wife Gil is a Saint, Sicily, It’s not Quite Tuscany portrays Sicily in a very contemporary and Australian style. Its also a book from a male perspective something which seems a little rare when writing about Italy these days. Whilst I really enjoyed Penelope Green’s books particularly See Naples and Die, as a male it did not hit the spot in the same way as this book does.

It’s a book about a young married couple who spend a year genuinely soaking up the earthiness of this amazing island in its most basic location, Catania, a city which certainly doesn’t enjoy good press and this book doesn’t really enhance it. Yet you are given a sense that by letting the town wash over you it’s not all bad. There is a rich description of the people, the sights and

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