Adelaide’s cultural identity | Stobie pole pop-up art ban | Annual Ern Malley Memorial Fringe Procession

This week InSider is shocked by the claim that “we’re all constantly drunk on wine staggering about going from an alfresco restaurant to a café” and by puppets made of lamb bones. Plus a whole lot more.

Feb 09, 2024, updated Feb 09, 2024

The party’s over

For those playing along, Councillor Henry Davis made his return to town hall Tuesday night, as promised in his social media video posted last Friday with the Adelaide Set sharing his 24K Gold cocktail review.

Thanks, councillor, for the shoutout and the web traffic it brought to our new InDaily site.

Adelaide’s cultural identity was a central topic of discussion as the committee discussed the council’s draft cultural policy, with Councillor David Elliott raising the need to understand the nation’s perception of Adelaide and the potential pitfalls of our success as a festival state.

“I think everyone probably nationally seems to think that we’re all constantly drunk on wine staggering about going from an Alfresco restaurant to a café but beyond that, there’s not really much else to do,” he said.

The nod to our perceived party culture garnered laughs and Elliott couldn’t resist stating the obvious; “councillor Davis knows very much about partying and cocktails”.

Another blow to artistic Adelaide

While Insider sees them as blank canvases crying out for artistic flair, the ban on displaying corflutes on public infrastructure couldn’t come quick enough for these pollies

Seems Labor gets the worst of it, somehow.

But the last say has to go to Minister Tom Koutsantonis, who remarked in parliament on Wednesday that he has been “using the same corflute since 1997”.

The Labor veteran – who heralded the “speedy passage” of the corflute ban (it’s been languishing on parliament’s notice paper since May last year) – rejected suggestions from the Opposition that he hasn’t aged since he entered politics.

“I have aged, I have changed a bit; I have mellowed over time,” he said, before an Opposition MP interjected with something about a Keto diet that was not picked up by Hansard.

“All those ketones, you reckon?” Koutsantonis replied, “No, I do not do ketones.”

Koutsantonis said the corflute ban was “a very good environmental outcome”, although noted there might be some amenity impacts without the politicians around.

“It improves the amenity of suburbs in between election campaigns, and we can get back to the old-fashioned knocking on doors, and meeting with people in parks and walkways to talk about local issues, rather than just relying on plastering a picture on Stobie poles,” he said.

“As attractive as we all are and how we would argue that we improve the amenity of the area – some more than others, some less so than others.”


Rolling on

Of course, hanging signs on Stobie poles isn’t the only way politicians can get their messages out there. There’s always the tried and true campaign vehicle like the one Nicolle Flint has been riding in this year.


But InSider wonders if the slogans on all these campaign materials are copyrighted, since Flint’s favourite happens to have been in use by the Murdoch press since 2018?


Or is it Uncle Rupert’ gift to the Liberals?

The Eighty-First Annual Ern Malley Memorial Fringe Procession

Grab a tambourine, your comfiest boots and a delicious bottle of South Australian Shiraz for the Annual Ern Malley Memorial Fringe Procession.

It will be the 81st time around for the prestigious event, according to proprietors of Magill Road-based bar and literary saloon Ern Malley, est. 1943.

Just kidding: this is the first time the event’s been run.

The perennial pranksters who run the dimly lit, book-filled Stepney bar first tried trolling us last year ahead of the venue’s opening. At the time, InSider was intrigued by the bar’s name (derived from a famous Adelaide literary hoax – read about it here). But for a bar to have existed since 1943 without grog-loving journos in the know would be a crime itself. Naturally, we didn’t fall for the Ern Malley curse.

InSider loves a tongue-in-cheek media release, so we gravitated to the bar’s latest announcement for the Memorial Fringe Procession. Though it sounds like a joke, the Ern Malley folks appear to be pretty serious about this journey through the leafy streets of Kent Town and in to the Exeter.

Here’s the media release republished in full:

The proprietors of ERN MALLEY established 1943 Pty. Ltd. will, according to an eighty-one year tradition, parade an image of their namesake, the fictional mid-century surrealist poet Earnest “Ern” Malley, through the back streets of Stepney, Norwood and Kent Town to the opening festivities of the Adelaide Fringe. A tradition they hope and expect other inner-city bars and pubs will soon undertake in a spirit of celebration and community.

Members of the public are encouraged to meet at ERN MALLEY wine bar et bistrot (established 1943 Pty. Ltd.) at 6pm on the Feast of the Martyred Saint Juliana of Nicomedia. Thereupon drinks will be poured, bread will be broken and candles will be lit. Shortly before sunset the image of Ern Malley will be triumphantly paraded into the City of Adelaide. Approximately fifty sojourners are expected.

Organisers are pleased to announce that marching musicians will be included in the procession, as will an “Eski” containing cold drinks. The proprietors of ERN MALLEY have further undertaken a guarantee to cover any financial penalties caught by those members of the procession who wish to consume alcohol along the parade route (though they hope and pray that the State will recognise the common good in their endeavour).


WHAT: The Eighty-First Annual Ern Malley Memorial Fringe Procession cum TRIUMPH

WHEN: February 16 (The Feast of the Martyred Saint Juliana of Nicomedia)

Commencing at 6pm (departing at 8pm)

WHERE: Ern Malley wine bar et bistrot, 137 Magill Rd, Stepney

The procession will take approximately 50 minutes, likely terminating in the vicinity of the Exeter Hotel, Rundle Street. Participants can either participate in the urban festivities, or return to Ern Malley, which will remain open and licensed until 1am.

ARIA-nominated frogs reach one million recordings

The Australian Museum’s frog identification app, FrogID, has received its one millionth recorded frog call, assisting in conservation and providing up-to-date froggy distribution data.

The app asks members of the public to send in recordings of frog sounds they hear, and has assisted in the identification of five new frog species.

While that’s all great, the thing InSider found most interesting in FrogID’s press release was hidden down at the very end – Australia’s frogs were nominated for an ARIA, for FrogID’s 2022 album Australian Frog Calls – Songs of Disappearance.

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As InSider writes this story, the soothing sounds of the northern snapping frog are playing. (Through headphones, as the rest of the office is on deadline and may not appreciate all that nature has to offer right now. InSider? I’m listening to 64 different frog calls).

When the album was released in 2022, it reached number three on the ARIA charts, just below Taylor Swift’s Midnights. While it neither usurped a global superstar, nor won the ARIA, Insider thinks that may be for the best. After all, do they make frog-sized tuxedos? And how would 64 frogs have fit on the ARIA red carpet? Would they each have gotten their own seat? Just thinking about it is making InSider stressed. Ahhh, never mind. The relaxing sound of an ARIA-nominated Tapping Nursery Frog just started, track number 25.

A speck in time

Readers of InDaily’s Business Insight newsletter each Monday will be familiar with its resident Stats Guy Simon Kuestenmacher.

He’s been on parental leave lately, so he decided to simply show maps (from his latest book) instead. This week he hit a doozy.

“This lovely, animated map shows the smallest possible circles containing 1 per cent to 100 per cent of the global population,” Simon says.

“It’s not until the 100 percent mark that Melbourne enters the circle.

“I find this map a marvellous piece to show just how isolated Australia really is.”

Meet the Fringe Artists

Anyone who moans that the Adelaide Fringe isn’t wild enough hasn’t sat through a three-hour speed dating event where hundreds of artists pitch themselves to media. Artists are given three minutes – which some studiously ignore – and here are three InSider is setting dates with:

Bone donor

In a pitch so scandalous it made InSider squirm, picture a show with puppets made out of lamb bones and the theme “what would you do for love?” The shocking gestures these puppets get up to were topped with an invitation to drink a concoction of lamb broth. Though visibly shaken, the bone donor assured InSider it was a beautiful love story before dropping a business card – a torn piece of paper with The Mouth Inside The Mouth handwritten in a black sharpie and attached to a small bone – and walking off.

It really is a Cruel Summer

Nothing says riding the Taylor Swift craze like Jason Prestell’s Fringe show The Errors Tour. But what stood out most was that he had no idea what the content would be, despite debuting less than a month from now. He doesn’t have tickets to any of Swift’s sold-out stadium concerts but is taking the train to Melbourne – and a boat back home – and says he’ll most definitely end up with a ticket. We assume he will be screaming “Cruel Summer”. We thought it was some creative, improv technique but he is really just underprepared. He still asked if we could review his show though. Of course we will.

We met someone in Boy Swallows Universe!

Rob Carlton wanted to talk about his upcoming show Willing Participant, which is based on four separate true stories about sexual taboos, big lies, heartaches and blind hope. But when he nonchalantly dropped that he’s also in Netflix’s original Australian drama, Boy Swallows Universe, the conversation, of course, turned to his experience on set and his role as The Courier Mail editor. Turns out, Carlton also played Kerry Packer in Paper Giants: The Birth of Cleo and won the Logie for Most Outstanding Actor in 2012.

Zero love

Emails from real estate agents tend to paint a rosy picture at the best of times, but amid a housing crisis InSider wonders if this info from Ray White is called for… but at the same time laments the death of the backyard tennis court that graced many Adelaide suburbs. If you have the need and the cash, this is where you can find them.

Stuff you should know…

InSider loves a “full disclosure” so here it goes: we have no financial or other interest in this product other than it’s cool ASF. Both for what they are trying to accomplish and for how the promo video is put together. Well worth the entire 14 minutes and 20 seconds of your time.



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