I am doing a small research on interim uses (also called temporary, meanwhile, pop-up), and researching the work of organisations such as The Gap Filler in Christchurch as a part of it.
What makes this video so lovely, so so very lovely, is in how Ryan Reynolds, a performance scholar, brings together a fundamentally urbanist practice and performance theory. And how he is able to explain the meaning of one through the concepts of the other.
Every so often, I feel very at home in someone’s thinking, and this was one such instance.
This video comes very close to summarising everything that is wrong with present-day, present-time Australia. From the fact that helmets for such small babies don’t exist, via the casual sexism of mother-shaming, to the very fact that this made it to the TV news.
It is also an excellent example of that insidious, mean streak in the Australian character that blames the weakest and the most vulnerable user of a public asset (in this case, road) whenever the said weakest and the most vulnerable user faces serious danger. It not only enforces uniformity, it also prevents any discussion of how things could be improved. (The same logic of the ‘no excuse zone‘ concept.) I cannot stress this enough: it is not the absence of helmet that injures cyclists, it is car drivers.
But, enough talk. One video is worth a million words, so let’s instead watch some discussion of cycling in Europe, esp re children on board.
I must warn you: the above video contains much distressing footage of children on bikes, many of which without helmets. It is shocking and absolutely outrageous, and all those parents should be fined, their children taken away, and sent to Australia… yeah.