Thursday, October 06, 2005

Couple letters boint out in the sign

That's a fragment from a favourite Tom waits song: "A sweet little bullet from a pretty blue gun" - on Blue Valentines. The verse runs:

now there's a place off the drag called the Gilbert hotel
there's a couple letters boint (burned) out in the sign
and it's better than a bus stop
and they do good business every time it rains
for sweet little girls with nothing in their jeans
but sweet little wishes and pretty blue dreams

Well, that song is on the Muvo (think early, cheaper, less hip iPod) and got an airing on the flight over to Melbourne. And then I do my usual constitutional walk after dinner: the Ship Turning Basin on the Yarra, past the Crown Casino (with conspicuous consumption of gas every hour, on the hour, early evenings, to attract the punters with loud and flaming spectacle), on down the South Bank, over the Princess Bridge to Flinders St railway station. It is a marvellous sight, the old and new buildings lit up at night, reflecting on the river. Use of architectural lighting needs three things: a range of publicly accessible viewing points, plenty of strategically sited lights (doh!), and buildings which are sufficiently interesting to light in the first place. It certainly works for me in Melbourne.


Halfway around the walk, I look over the river, at the hotel I'm staying at. It has a large illuminated sign on top. But...

There's a Couple letters boint out in the sign!

Spooky, no?

I do the decent thing and leave a note for Maintenance with the front-desk crew when I get back.

Because, after all, 'Sweet little bullet' is a morality tale about the dangers of wandering around with 'sweet little dreams' in a fundamentally uncaring city. The chorus runs:

It takes a sweet little bullet from a pretty blue gun
to put those scarlet ribbons in your hair

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