Published in Overland Issue 209 Summer 2012 · Uncategorized Obit Fiona Wright He had good ideas in the shower, he was sitting upright heroically typing away on his computer – he improvised the filthiest, bawdiest limericks you can possibly imagine. A magazine had commissioned me to write thumbnail sketches of every war going on in the world — ‘unequivocally the most disgusting article I have ever read,’ he later said. But provocation was fun like the unbuttoning of a stripper’s overcoat, promising delights to come. I made a circumcision joke about snipping his name, and he remembered the old Fascist slogan – many enemies, much honour but my heart is far too reptilian for that. ‘Hello, comrade,’ he said, his glass already gratefully extended, ‘This is a real revo.’ He could be a real shit if you fell on the wrong side of his favour. ‘I don’t usually start this early, but holding yourself to a drinking schedule is always the first sign of alcoholism.’ I offered him a welcome-to-the-war shot of ‘Listerine’, just to be hospitable, or for that jumpstart he could administer so well. ‘Fuck off!’ he replied – he later wrote a paean to the expression — and then ‘I see you were feeling eeyorish about Macedonia last week.’ By 1 a.m. I was speechless with drink and he was in spate. He and I embraced each other on a street corner like parting lovers dressed in preposterous hot pants and high heeled suede boots: two cheese sandwiches, a couple of bananas. ‘Brunch? Sunday? Smooch.’ I think of it as Manhattan teatime. Fiona Wright Fiona Wright’s new essay collection is The World Was Whole (Giramondo, 2018). Her first book of essays Small Acts of Disappearance won the 2016 Kibble Award and the Queensland Literary Award for nonfiction, and her poetry collections are Knuckled and Domestic Interior. More by Fiona Wright Overland is a not-for-profit magazine with a proud history of supporting writers, and publishing ideas and voices often excluded from other places. If you like this piece, or support Overland’s work in general, please subscribe or donate. Related articles & Essays First published in Overland Issue 228 8 June 2023 · Technology ‘AI’ and the quest to redefine workers’ autonomy Rob Horning The phrase artificial intelligence is a profoundly ideological way to characterise automation technologies. It is an expression of the general tendency to discuss technologies as though they were ‘powerful’ in and of themselves—as if power weren’t a relative measure of the different capacities and prerogatives of social classes. First published in Overland Issue 228 7 June 2023 · Housing Taking the Rat King on tour Murdoch Stephens Late last year, Renters United and I joined together to make a new version of Rat King Landlord that would be free to renters. I had been aware of Renters United for about four years when the book came out and I loved what they were up to. Whenever the weird logic of property speculation got air time, Renters United would be there talking about the real impact on people. We were faced with two challenges: where to get the funds to make a few thousand copies, and how to make sure the copies didn’t just sit in our garages getting damp.