I have no idea what I said to a Newcastle Herald reporter yesterday. She came across my name when trawling back through past stories about Newcastle East, for her background research on a weekend supplement story she’s writing, to a deadline, as journalists must. A few phone calls later, and I was making her coffee up in my kitchen, chatting away, being recorded, before being whisked down the road for a few photos. I really do like journalists. They have a talent for writing, and listening, and synthesising opposing views from a soup of public and expert opinions.
I’ve written a few opinion pieces for the local paper before. There’s a great discipline in that, to be punchy and engaging in just a few words. However, being mined for word grabs for inclusion in a journalist’s text is a completely different kind of experience. I’m reminded of bit-parts I played in school drama productions. To this day, I have no idea what story my few lines were a part of. My sense this time is I will be cast in the role of the activist, fighting for what… I don’t know.
I would like to see the inner city made so unfriendly to cars that drivers don’t bother. I would like to see single storey buildings on 5 storey streets replaced with walk up "student" housing, without any car parking. I would like to see the 1970s idea of the city and coastline as places to go in your car, replaced with a vision of the city as somewhere for thousands to live, without cars, but pushbikes instead. If any of that makes it into the article, well, I’ll be happy. If a link to this blog is published as well, I’ll be over the moon! Keep them hits coming! Whether I’m misquoted or not, I love the attention.