writing


Remembering

Mr John Clarke

You can read Kaz’s tribute at The Wheeler Centre site, here.


INTO THE VALLEY OF OVER 30 RODE THE HAIRY ONES

By Kaz Cooke

First published in The Age newspaper, and then in the book collection of columns ‘Get A Grip’ (1996, Penguin Australia), now out-of-print.

By way of warning, some awful stuff happens to you on the other side of thirty.

THE ALL-PURPOSE, ONE-SHOT, DEFINITIVE PARENT-TEENAGER CONVERSATION

By Kaz Cooke
First published on ninemsn.com.au website in 2016.

Teenage girl: Mum, Kaitlen was so mean to Aliyah today. I need money for the thing, I can’t believe he said that, and you need to drive me to the other thing now.   

Mum: I know nothing of any of these unconnected matters. You are talking so fast; are you on any of the drugs?

Teen: I’m not on the drugs. Look at these Facebook pages of some other teenage girls who are not me.


You could catch stingrays in my underpants

If you read my pregnancy book, ‘Up the Duff’, you might remember this cartoon from Week 21. Over the years ‘Up the Duff’ has been translated into some other languages for ‘foreign editions’ in China, Poland, Spain (where the book is called Embarazada), Italian and French. Some of the translations for this cartoon, ‘You could catch stingrays in my underpants’ include: ‘Si può prendere razze in mutande’, ‘Można złapać płaszczki w moich majtkach’ and my favourite, ‘Se puede tomar rayas en mis calzoncillos’! Up the Duff is still going strong in Australia, where we update medical and other info every year for a new edition, without getting our calzoncillos in a knot.

IN PRAISE OF WEIRDOs

By Kaz Cooke
First published by Story, the magazine of the Queensland Performing Arts Centre, 2016.

Kids don’t need Lord of the Flies on the curriculum to know they’re living it. The CVs of political leaders bristle with schools known for an elite standard of bullying. ‘The old school tie’ may not just be emblematic of connections; it might also represent the fear of being garotted on the oval by a future Treasurer.

GIMME THAT OLD STORY RELIGION

As part of the Wheeler Centre Gala Storytelling night to raise money for the Indigenous Literary Fund in 2012, Kaz joined other writers to speak on the theme of beliefs. Here's what she wrote to read out on the night:

KEEP YOURSELF NICE

From the archive of Kaz’s ye olde etiquette column, Keep Yourself Nice which ran in the Saturday Extra section of The Age. There are references to her assistant, Mervyn Purvis, who has since left her employ (and her turret, come to that.)

These columns are from 1993 and were kindly retrieved by a newspaper librarian, Mr John Langdon:

BOOK REVIEW

THE LITTLE BOOK OF PLEASURE by PAUL WILSON

By Kaz Cooke
First appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald
Spectrum section, 3 April 1999.

We’d be much happier in the nuddy

Once upon a time Paul Wilson published The Little Book of Calm and it sold approximately 14 gerzillion copies, was a bestseller in England and made me so tense that I immediately had to write The Little Book of Stress (published by Penguin Australia) which sold less gerzillion copies. 

RECLAIM THE NIGHTIE

By Kaz Cooke
First published in The Age, Sydney Morning Herald, 1999.

Once again we position the driftnet over the mailbag, shake it out on the deck and see what divine little squidlets have come up from the postal briny with the heaving, leviathan, mammalian ...  you know, I sometimes find that a metaphor gets entirely out of control and it's best for everyone to just abandon the sentence while you still have time, before the peeved, swirling, gelatinous seas rise in ludicrous waves of ...

THE RETREAT: A TRAVEL STORY

by Kaz Cooke

First published in the Travel section of The Age, September 2005. After being fired ignominiously from commercial radio station, I went to a spa-salon-y sort of a place for a few days. It was three blocks from my house at the time. That was more than 10 years ago now, I could probably do with another waxing.

copyright kaz cooke