the Australian

“The Australian”

Sydney August 2014 (4 photos)

Some things in life are bad
They can really make you mad
Other things just make you swear and curse
When you’re chewing on life’s gristle
Don’t grumble, give a whistle
And this’ll help things turn out for the best. And…

…always look on the bright side of life…

“Always Look on the Bright Side of Life” is a comedy song written by Eric Idle that was originally featured in the 1979 film Monty Python’s Life of Brian.

I saw this man reading a newspaper, The Australian, obviously taking in the sad and bad news in society today. He wasn’t mad but he may have been chewing on life’s gristle. I grabbed another shot as I walked past.

the Australian-2

I saw something that made me almost give a whistle. I did a quick circuit and came back to shoot him again.

(Cryptic Hint: Monty Python looks at the bright side of life in their typical fashion)

Over at the WordPress Weekly Challenge, the topic this week is Dialogue, in photographic terms this can be perceived as an interaction between images. Placed together, each photograph opens up to meanings that weren’t there when viewed alone. (Hmmm, isn’t that what I always try to do?)

the Australian-3

Fortunately, by the time I came back he had put his newspaper down so I could get a clear shot of him. This man was certainly looking on the bright side of life with the message on his shirt. Another shot for good measure.

the Australian-4


And now for some gratuitous Monty Python’s Life of Brian facts:

The film was a box-office success, grossing fourth-highest of any film in the United Kingdom in 1979 and highest of any British film in the United States that year. It was named “greatest comedy film of all time” by several magazines and television networks.

The movie drew great controversy. Thirty-nine local authorities in the UK either imposed an outright ban, or imposed an X (18 years) certificate. Some countries, including Ireland and Norway, banned its showing, with a few of these bans lasting decades. A town in south Wales famously banned it at the time even though there was no local cinema. The filmmakers used such notoriety to benefit their marketing campaign, with posters stating “So funny it was banned in Norway!”

When Michael Palin, as Pontius Pilate, was daring his guards to laugh about Biggus Dickus’ name, he really was daring them. The people playing the soldiers were told not to laugh during the scene but were not told what Palin would be doing or saying. The giggling and laughing in the scene is genuine.

And the final word goes to Biggus: “Let me come with you, Pontiuth. I may be of thome athithtanthe if there ith a thudden crithith!”

Photography Etcetera, Sony Etcetera

Always look on the bright side of life


95 thoughts on “Always look on the bright side of life

  1. Grumpy old bugger. Serves him right for reading that right-wing rag. [grin]
    You’ll always be on a winner if you quote the Python, LD !!! πŸ™‚

  2. I agree about the film – it must be the greatest comedy of our time πŸ˜€ He does not seem to draw much attention. Were you the only one to spot what’s written on his shirt or people just go about their own business over there? It must be the latter one πŸ˜€ Enjoy your dinner, Draco πŸ™‚

    • Monty Python was comedy genius. πŸ™‚

      Most people just walk by. I almost stopped completely for the 3rd and 4th photos – but I’m different, as you know. πŸ™‚ Thank you very much Paula.

  3. Great shots, Dragon. Not often you come across a shirt with a caption like that. Never been a fan of that newspaper, actually…brings too much gloom, apart from other reasons.

    I remember watching snippets of Monty Python as a kid. Didn’t understand it but I remember laughing a lot.

    • I wonder if that shirt was custom made for him, for a birthday present or something. The design is quite plain.

      Monty Python is classic British comedy. The parrot sketch will live forever. πŸ™‚

  4. Oh please!!!! At the beginning I liked the shots and the expression of the man…Then, when I saw the message on the T-shirt….Come on!!! That is priceless!!!! I love it!!! He must be a real character….!!!!!
    I love that film..In general all the Monty PythonΒ΄s.-….They are so funny….I love when they are just in the middle of the room, with a blanket, saying they are hidden and nobody can find them…
    Great post!!!!

    • Thank you kindly. I felt like I won the lottery when I saw him and the shirt. I actually walked past him 4 times. πŸ™‚

      Monty Python is classic comedy. Those guys are geniuses.

  5. Your photos ALWAYS make me stop and think. These made me chuckle. I mean, WHO would wear such a sweater? Really? I’d have gone back for another shot too πŸ˜€

  6. Wonderful! Dialogue indeed – in so many ways. I would have been happy with just the first shot which is excellent. But the unfolding story is so much more. Had me laughing with my breakfast this morning. Thanks!

    • Thank you Patti. That shirt is gold for a street photographer. And the newspaper shot ties it in well with the song. Gold!!! πŸ™‚

      Biggus Dickus certainly does exude a certain je ne sais quoi

  7. oh…. my…. god…. this is one of your best finds, Lignum, seriously… the last two pictures with the print on his shirt…:D you must have been ecstatic to capture something like this… I would have been πŸ˜€

    someday, your street photography will be studied in textbooks, trust me…

    shame on me, but I haven’t seen Monty Python… will do πŸ™‚

    • Thank you Alex. Sometimes you get lucky with who you come across in public. Very lucky. πŸ™‚

      Monty Python was a classic British comedy team, mostly on television to start with but then into movies. John Cleese was one of the team. Google Monty Python Parrot sketch for a taste of their comedy style. πŸ™‚

  8. That is an excellent series of pictures, Dragon. I laughed out loud when I saw what was written on his sweatshirt. Good one for getting it without falling about howling with laughter !

    • You love this movie? How did I know? πŸ™‚
      I watched the clip again on youtube with the knowledge the actors playing guards were specifically told not to laugh – it makes it even funnier. I’d have been sent to gladiatorial school if I were one of them.

  9. That old man is an ace.. And he has a big one!! πŸ™‚

    Love the pics and those marvelous words by you:

    Don’t grumble, give a whistle
    And this’ll help things turn out for the best. And…
    …always look on the bright side of life…

    Beautiful message!, thanks for sharing, Aquileana πŸ˜€

    • Even though the song is for a comedy sketch, it does make a lot of sense. And that man has a lot of gumption to wear that in public – good on him. πŸ™‚

      Many thanks Aquileana. Have a great day ahead.

  10. Karen says:

    Life of Brian, I vaguely remember that, that sweatshirt gave me a surprise and chuckle. Newspapers these day’s, and the news, full of doom and gloom.

  11. tara cooney says:

    I think this is one of my favourite series you’ve done yet! I’ll be that guy is such a character. Great shots. Again, how you get away with it I have no idea! πŸ™‚

  12. The look on his face is exactly the reason I don’t read newspapers in general – doesn’t really brighten the day. 😦 And certainly won’t help you look on the bright side of life! I remember The Life Of Brian, a favourite comedy of my bother and I – still funny today! The stupid thing about all those bans on the film was that it wasn’t even about Jesus anyway, it was about a man who was mistaken as Jesus – if I remember that right? Maybe the bans were more for making the film popular when it wasn’t banned any more? I’ve heard of that theory the ‘banned book’ actually guaranteeing the books success. πŸ˜‰

    And as for the sweatshirt wording – *smiling* perfect wear for going out for a cup of tea! At least he comes with a warning – in one way or another! πŸ˜€

    • Reading newspapers, I always used to go to the comics section first. πŸ™‚

      I think the movie is hilarious – so clever on multiple levels. Yes, banning it was probably a clever move to. πŸ™‚

      The sweatshirt as a warning – LOL – love it. πŸ™‚ I wonder if anyone has ever said anything to him about it.

  13. This is so great! πŸ™‚ These photos tell a fantastic story! It seems he’s got life quite figured out. He might be reading bad news but his attitude won’t let them get him down. πŸ™‚ Really great work Draco!

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