part of the problem

I was watching a movie on TV while working on some other projects, and this ad kept coming up.

I was chatting earlier today about the idea of everyday sexism: this ad is doing a lot of the stereotype perpetuation – the mum is reducing her relationship with her daughter to being able to provide her with the fashion item that she wants. Unhappy with her inability to look the way she wants, the Mum steps in, and – using the product – makes the daughter happy again that she can fit the stereotype she aspires to. I know it’s a lot to ask of a cleaning product ad, but could we see the product fit into a more intellectually fulfilling life somehow? 

Three Ropes, Parramatta

three ropes, parramatta

Umami Coffee. 10A Darcy St, Parramatta. Block out the walk past the train line at Parramatta and you could see yourself in a lane way cafe in Melbourne: this is a good fit-out, and one with attention to detail on the quirky details of interior design.

three ropes, parramatta

They’ve made a lot of a tiny space – I’m not sure I’ve seen a smaller sink for the self-serve water!

three ropes, parramatta

The staff are knowledgeable about their product – we have a long chat about whether to try the house blend as a long black or a macchiato, and they’re only too happy to add in a bit of milk when I realise they’re right, and its strength (tailored for their most popular coffee – a large flat white) is too great without the milk.


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Circa, Parramatta

Circa, Parramatta

Five Senses Coffee. 21 Wentworth St, Parramatta. This came to my attention as the winner of the SMH Good Cafe Guide awards 2013 (disclosure: I was paid to write some reviews in that guide, but had been buying my own copy for a few years – it’s a really useful guidebook). Only open on weekdays, I had to wait until I had a day of annual leave before making the journey, but I’m very glad I did.

Circa, Parramatta

It was a bit chilly inside on the day we visited, so we had a table out in the sun, tried the food, the decaf, the cold drip, and even the single origin. The food is excellent, and the coffee is beyond my skill as a taster to fault. Service was friendly, knowledgable and ever helpful. Deserves its reputation.

Circa, Parramatta

Parramatta (at least during the week) is finally a place where a decent coffee can be found.

Official website: http://circaespresso.com.au/


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gardening

Yesterday I spent some time in the garden, after a lot of weekends when we were too busy to make it happen. It was a good mix of cutting up branches, and getting the kids involved in helping tidy up, and mowing the weeds, trying to reveal the underlying grass. There’s something re-energising about switching off from the online world (except, perhaps, the podcast I was listening to) and do something in physical space.