Thursday, December 11, 2008

Adam Hills Gives Me an Excuse to Do Multiple Rants

I need a break from politics.

Yes, I'm sure politics is everywhere, and every famous person is probably a little political. But I'm thinking that I'll probably encounter less politics if I write about a comedian than I would if I wrote about a politician.

I hope.

Adam Hills.

I like him.

I first heard about him from Jayne. She told me to look him up.

I did, and I enjoyed his work.

Now I'm going to look him up even more....

Adam Hills was born on July 10, 1970. He's five months younger than my older sister. I'm guessing he's a Cancer. I say this because Tim is a Cancer and his birthday is on the 16th. See? I have SOME logical ability....but not much.

Let's go to the Birthday Website to make sure I'm right.

Yep. I am.

Good.

His numerology number is 7. That's the same as me! Cool. I love being a 7. It's all about learning. I love learning. I guess that might be hard to tell.

His Chinese Astrology sign is the dog, and his Native American one is the Woodpecker.

Hills was born in a Sydney suburb called Loftus. I've never heard of it.

Looking at Google Maps......

It's south of Sydney. Google says it's a 47 minute drive from Darling Harbor. That's pretty far. It's past the airport.

 I'm just trying to get some perspective here.

Lord Wiki doesn't provide much information about Hill's personal life. He says Hills became interested in comedy when he watched an inflight comedy program on a plane. He was eight.

I wonder where he was flying to.

Hills was born without a right foot and wears a prosthesis.

He went to school at Macquarie University. The Wiggles went to the same school. Except for Greg (the ex-yellow one), they're all much older than Hills and were probably long gone from the school when he entered. Hills majored in communication. If I remember correctly, The Wiggles (or some of them) majored in early childhood education.

I don't see a communications major listed on the University's website. They do have media studies. I guess that's the same thing.

They have a major called Australian Studies. I think that would be a lot of fun to study.

I guess I should look at the guy's career now.

Lord Wiki says he started in 1989. He was 19. This first performance happened at the Sydney Comedy Store. I'm assuming that's this place. Right now, they're having Christmas shows....if any of you Sydney folks are interested. It's located at the Entertainment Quarter in Moore Park. I think that's near the Farmer's market we went to.

Lord Wiki says Hills didn't mention his missing foot until 2001. He wanted to establish himself as a comedian first and not be known mainly for the foot thing. I can understand that. I think some comedians do get attention based on something that stands out. Look! The deaf comedian! Look! The MUSLIM comedian! Look! That comedian who has no foot!

Hills waited until he was nominated for a Perrier Award and then broke the news. What's the Perrier Award? I shall look that up.

Oh! I found some controversy. And it involves breast milk. I'm like a bug to a light when it comes to breastfeeding controversies.

First of all, according to Lord Wiki, the contest changed it's name. It's now known as if.comedy. It's a Scottish thing--part of something called the Edinburgh Fringe. Oh, and it turns out this is the world's biggest art festival. I'm glad I know that now.

Okay.

They used to be sponsored by the drink company Perrier. And this is where the controversy comes in. Perrier is owned by Nestle. Many people around the world boycott Nestle because they violate the International Code of Marketing Breast Milk Substitutes. In a nutshell, this is the problem: Not breastfeeding is a serious health risk for ANY child and it's mother. For families in poor countries, it is an even greater risk. To make a bottle with formula, you need two things: Clean water and an adequate amount of formula. Nestle markets formula to these mothers who then later might not have access to clean water or formula. The mammary glands work via a supply and demand process. Once you choose formula over breasts, it's very challenging to switch.

Lately, problems related to this have actually been happening in my lovely country. Because of current financial challenges, mothers are serving watered-down formula to their babies. This is very dangerous. First of all, the baby is not getting the nutrition it needs. Second, it's dangerous for a baby to have too much water.

In America, we're told Breast is best, and then in the maternity ward, we get cute little diaper bags with free formula. The message: You probably won't have enough breast milk and you'll need to supplement. And that's good because people who breast feed are a bunch of feminist dykes with no decency. Use formula and your family will be cute, stylish, and....NORMAL!

The whole thing disgusts me. I'm ashamed to say I'm not good at boycotting Nestle though. We buy the stuff. We ate Violent Crumble bars in Australia. Although, now I've gone off most sugar (at least for awhile) so my chance of ingesting their products has greatly been reduced.

Still, Nestle isn't the only guilty party. There are other formula companies. Any hospital or doctor's office that passes out free formula is to blame. The media is to blame. Any celebrity who expresses her disgust over seeing a mom breastfeed in public is to blame.

I could go on and on about this.

But I'll shut up now.

Back to Adam Hills.

Or back to the comedy show. I'm not sure if they changed the sponsorship because of the breast milk controversy, or if another company just bought them out. Well, I do know another company bought them out. I just know if the contest TRIED to get bought out because they didn't want to be sponsored by a controversial company.

Lord Wiki says Hills is most known for his music trivia show Spicks and Specks. He's also probably well known for his brilliant version of the National Anthem--inspired by Jimmy Barnes song Working Class Man. If by chance you haven't seen that, go watch it.....NOW.  I demand you!

IMDb says Hills is the brother of Brad Hills. Who is that?

I'm guessing maybe it's this guy. He kind of looks like Adam Hills. Actually, he sort of reminds me of David Arquette.

Now I shall look at the official Adam Hills website. It has a lot of purple balloons. He has a video displayed on this front page. It's him totally dissing women's magazines. I like women's magazines almost as much as I like formula companies. I absolutely hate those magazines and how they promote stick figure bodies. The best is when they feature articles about eating disorders, and then all their models in that issue look like fragile little skeletons with stylish clothing. It's ridiculous. Anyway, I like what Hills says about them. It's funny, but also a bit biting. I like that.

Oh! He has a blog. That's cool. And it seems he writes in it fairly frequently. He talks about the sign language interpreter at his shows. This started when he hosted a disability arts conference in Adelaide. He did some of his show with an interpreter and found not only did it allow the hearing-impaired to enjoy his show, but also the hearing people enjoyed seeing the sign language.

I love sign language. I wish I knew more of it. We know a little because we did it with Jack when he was a toddler. Jack was a late talker so sign language was a huge help to us.

Hills is a big fan of Adam Ant. Interesting.....

He has a MySpace account. I guess MySpace is popular with celebrities. At least it seems that way.

He last logged in on December 10. That's pretty recent. I wonder if that's my time or Australia time. I'm guessing it's Australia time.

He has 14,634 friends. Wow. He's Mr. Popular. He's in a relationship, and he's straight.

On MySpace, you can list people you'd like to meet. Adam Hills has chosen the Dalai Lama, Robin Williams, and Tina Fey. That's a cool list. I bet he'll meet them one day.

Okay, Jack just proved the point about comedians being known for what makes them unique (special). He just came to sit on my lap and saw who I was writing about. He said Isn't that the guy who's missing his leg?

I really don't personally find that bad or offensive. I think most of us are attracted (interested in) people who are different. I'm fascinated by it. But I do understand the desire to not want to be known primarily for that reason. It's hard to get around that though. As soon as you announce your illness or disability, it's likely that's the first thing people will think of when they think of you. I think Christopher Reeve is now better known for being a quadriplegic than he's known for Superman. I think Michael J. Fox is now best known for having Parkinson's. If you're a conjoined twin, your sense of humor will probably not be the first thing that comes to mind when people think of you.

If you LIE about having an illness or disability because you like attention, you'll probably be most remembered for being a manipulative liar. And no. I'm not talking about Adam Hills here. Some of you will get this reference. For those of you who don't.....be glad!

Back to labels. When I was into the whole Jewish pride thing, Julius Lester came to our Synagogue. He talked about prejudice. I don't remember much. But I do remember that he said something like it's not your first thought that matters. It's your second one that does. If you see someone of a different race and it initially scares you, that's fine. No worries. But then you need to remind yourself not to be prejudice and rude. It's not horrible to look at Adam Hills and immediately think, that's the comedian who's missing his right foot. That's probably natural. But then it's good to remind yourself that he's not just that. He's the guy who made that new version of the National Anthem, and he's the guy who made fun of the name Americans give their children. He's the guy who's won comedy awards and hosts a music trivia show.

So, anyway......

Wow. This guy gets around. He also has a Facebook page.

Well, I also have a Facebook page (completely locked) and a MySpace page. Oh, and I'm also on Twitter. But the thing is I rarely go to any of them. So, technically speaking, I don't exactly get around.

Actually, I'm not sure if the Facebook page is his page (that he controls) or something set up by fans.

I'm now going to watch a Rove interview with Adam Hills. This might be fun.

Lord Wiki wrote about this too, but I forgot to mention it. In September, Hills was the host for the Paralympics in Beijing. Therese Rein is involved with that. I wonder if they met each other.

Thanks Rove for reminding me.

Anyway, back to rest of the interview.

There's funny footage of him crowd-surfing his artificial foot. I'm glad someone didn't run away with that thing. I can totally picture certain people doing that.

Okay. Someone on the show mentioned my same concern. The loss of the foot. I'm not the only one who thinks about such things.

He says he'd go gay for himself. That's as bad as Kevin's Rudd's answer! What a cop out!

6 comments:

magikquilter said...

Great post, he is a very talented and interesting guy. Very interesting too how those born with disabilities just get on with things, look at all the athletes at the games. Although we never understood why the swimmers with less body parts, especially those whose disabilities made them so much shorter than the others, did not get a sort of head start...so to speak. Did not seem fair.

Just told my son you are a published author...well done! And I take it from this you are Jewish? That explains the lack of Xmas tree. My best friend is Jewish and am often mistaken for being Jewish because of my last name. My husband's great great great grandfather was a Russian Jew

Dina said...

Magikquilter,

You're my first Shelfari friend now!!

I don't know about the swimming. Maybe if you're missing body parts, you end up going faster?

About the publishing. It wasn't exactly an accomplishment--it's more about opening my wallet. I ended up going the self-publishing route. I paid a company and they published the book. And I know that can STILL be an accomplishment, but I didn't do very well at it. I did very little in terms of marketing it.

I haven't had many people buy the book.

The book itself...well, that I'm fairly happy with. I like the story. I'm proud that I wrote it.

As for religion. It's complicated. I'm Jewish, but don't consider that my religion.

I don't know what I am. I guess I'm just spiritual with no set religion.

We have friends with a Jewish-sounding last name. We're Russian Jews, but our last name was changed! So, our last name doesn't sound Jewish.

I don't really do anything Jewish. I don't go to synagogue. I don't celebrate holidays unless we're with family and they're celebrating something.

Jayne said...

That gorgeous man just got engaged, too.
Yep, I know what you're referring to with lies, etc ;)

Dina said...

Jayne,

I saw that about the engagement! I'll try not to be too jealous ; )

Lee said...

Very weird. I've lived in so many places you've talked about - Cammeray, Mossman, North Sydney, currently living in Redfern etc (what am I - some kinda gyspy?), and I grew up in Sutherland which is right next to Loftus. There really would be no point in going to Loftus.

Adam Hills is very funny and Spicks n Specks is a very silly and enjoyable show.

And the current Comedy Store is at the same place as the growers markets you went to but it's not likely to be the original comedy store of the late 80s. That venue was in the city somewhere... it could have been in The Rocks. The current Comedy Store recently closed down but has since re-opened, but it's a relatively new venue, and a very good one. It's only about 15 minutes from Darling Harbour... better going there two or three times than going to Loftus.

Dina said...

Lee,

Hey! You could be our tour guide. We're actually not in Darling Harbor this time. I thought we'd at least be close, but we did more studying of the maps and we'll actually be in Darlinghurst.

It kind of changes a lot for us. The places that we thought would be easy to get to seem harder to get to know...and places I thought would be harder to get to, seem a bit easier.

Redfern will be one of the easiest places to get to. It's a quick train ride. I think we could even walk there.

I didn't plan to go to Loftus...just like reading about the places : )

It would be great to go to the comedy store. I might look into that.