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Ben Cousins – Such Is Life – Part 2

August 30th, 2010

What a clown. There’s no point really discussing him. All the documentary did was try and glamorise him, which as a decent sports person it didn’t achieve. But as an absolutely disrespectful person, it has glamorised him. Why do we even bother to talk about people like him – giving them the time and publicity they want and achieve. The media is ridiculous – myself inclusive.

The end.

Ben Cousins – Such Is Life – Part 1

August 26th, 2010

In 2008 a 2 part documentary about Ben Cousins’ drug addiction was produced and directed by Mushroom.

All the radio shows and morning TV shows discussed whether they thought it would be good or bad for children to watch the documentary called “Such Is Life”.

So after it aired on Wednesday night – was it good or was it bad?

I don’t think it was either – but I do think it was completely pointless. What did this doco strive to achieve? Educate children about the destruction drugs can cause? Educate adults on the destruction drugs can cause? Or was it just a biography on his life?

If you ask me, I think the show is just glamorising him even more… “Oooooh we now love Ben, he is so sweet and ooooh we give him sympathy now”. He was sitting there with his crisply capped teeth, speaking about his life and what he did. Not once did he feel bad or regret what he’s done. He sits there telling the stories. Yes he admits he’s a drug addict, but all the bad things he said were quickly covered with a positive.

Now if I were a 14 or 15 year old boy watching that, I would be thinking “hey, I’m going to take drugs, it made me popular with the popular people and look at that, I’ll come out of it fine, my life will be fine”. To me, all it has done is show that drugs can affect your life, but you can come back good from it, and still have everything at the same time.

All the media, and the documentary call him a hero, or a Prince. He is neither. He is lucky. He is lucky that he is not dead. I don’t understand why he is called this. Why he is a super-star? Why?

He sits there in his Armani jacket laughing about fleeing the booze bus, running through houses, jumping roofs, and swimming about 1km across a river to get away from police.

He pleads about how he has never taken performance enhancing drugs during or before a game. Fair enough.

On and on and on the doco goes… Talking about Ben and what happened next. He refers to the police as “they”, he constantly defends himself. He laughs about what happened.

So what was the point? I think Ben Cousins was paid a huge amount of money to open up his life to the cameras. He has fantastic publicists, amazing managers and very smart people marketing him. This was boring – it was like watching a series about criminals and their crimes, just the story but no point for telling it.

This documentary was beautifully edited, the honesty from all involved was raw, but it lacked meaning, it lacked education, it lacked a point.

Part 2, the conclusion to come tomorrow.

The Most Charming Newsreader Of All – Ricardo Goncalves

July 26th, 2010

Well dressed, witty humour, charasmatic and quick in his responses, it’s no wonder Ricardo Goncalves is a popular guy.

A Presenter/Reporter for SBS World News Australia and also coming from Sky News, Ricardo is an educated man, growing up on the South Coast of Sydney. He is a heavily researched reporter who knows his job inside out and takes pride in himself and the work he does.

I met Ricardo at a mutual friend’s dinner party, where he instantly charms both the men and women in the room. He is warm and approachable. He listens to people as much as you listen to him and as any educated communicator does, he asks questions about you and want’s to know what you have to say.

A very funny guy, who has substance, presence and charm, I’d like you to get to know more about him. This is Ricardo Goncalves…

What projects are you currently working on or have in the near future?

Right now I’m enjoying working as a presenter and reporter for SBS World News Australia after a long stint with Sky News Australia and Nine News Melbourne. It’s been a dramatic learning curve taking on the big global issues after years of business journalism.

I’m also very keen on the public speaking/MC circuit.

Who or what influences you most in Fashion and home décor?

When it comes to fashion, I’m known for being quite conservative, love my blacks, although I’m most comfortable in my Adidas gear. Let’s just say I’m very thankful for the wardrobe department at SBS. When it comes to the apartment, I’m very much a minimalist. I love clean lines and surfaces.

What is your favourite piece of clothing or accessory?

When it comes to dressing up, I’m a big fan of Farage, and a mate of mine, Donny Galella, does some great evening wear which I like also. Again though, show me something with the Adidas logo, and I’ll wear it.

Do you have one feature in your home you love most?

Does FOXTEL IQ2 count?

Which foods and drinks most excite your taste buds?

I’m very much a vodka, lime and soda kind of guy, but when the sun is out and the heat is on, then it’s a Hahn Super Dry. There’s also nothing better than that sound a can of Coke Zero makes when you open it.

What is your greatest extravagance?

iPhone. It’s one of those things you buy that you don’t really really need, but really really want.

Greatest lesson learnt?

Never write anything you don’t understand. As a junior reporter working for David Koch almost 10 years ago, I wrote a couple of financial terms in an article I thought I should include, because they sounded right, even though I didn’t know what they meant. Kochie then called me to ask me to explain to him what those terms were. I didn’t know. He then told me what he thought of that. From then on, I never wrote something I didn’t understand 100%

What advice would you give someone if they were thinking of a career in your industry?

Persist and persevere. My UAI wasn’t high enough to get into a well regarded Journalism degree, so I wrote dozens of letters to well known journos asking for their advice. Again, dozens actually wrote back and a couple suggested I do a business degree because there was a demand for business journalists. They were right. Also, getting work experience and learning on the road is in my opinion the best way to do it. When I was 17, I called WIN TV Wollongong once a fortnight asking for work experience. After six months, they eventually let me come in. I worked one day a week there, for free, putting stories to air, for two years before getting paid. Finally, don’t expect to start at the top. Get a good grounding about what journalism actually is and practise the craft of telling a story. I first started by holding a flecky board for another journo’s piece-to-cam. Don’t know what a flecky board is? Then you haven’t started at the bottom….

How do you maintain a life balance between work and home?

I am a news junkie, so I’m constantly flicking between the news programmes to compare their stories and presentation even at home. However, I’m keen on the gym and my shift work means I have my mornings free to have a bit of a life. I’m also very lucky to have weekends off, so I’ve always got time for myself, family and friends.

My Mother/Father always told me…

It’s not ok to spend your money frivolously, but it’s ok to spend money on good food.

Where is your favourite place to relax in Sydney?

I’ve got a couple of favourite breaky spots in Surry Hills and Potts Point that serve amazing coffee, brilliant breakfast and enough room on the table to have all of that, plus the newspaper spread out to read.

How often do you eat out and cook at home?

I haven’t located the stove at home yet….

Signature dish?

Does cereal count?

The one thing I can’t leave home without is…

My white gold neckchain and crucifix. It’s a gift from mum.

What frustrates you most about Sydney?

Peak hour traffic.

If you were Clover Moore, what would be the first thing you’d inject money into fixing?

Pushing the State Government for better transport infrastructure.

Favourite beach in Sydney and why?

North Bondi. Great place to chill and swim after doing the Bronte to Bondi walk..

Three pet hates?

1. Dog hair

2. People that stand at the end of an escalator

3. Selfish drivers

Where would be your ultimate holiday destination?

Anywhere on a beach in the Mediterranean or on the island of Madeira.

What is one quality you have, that you hope your children will get and carry through life?

Getting the balance of work, family and friends right.

When was the last time you cried? If you wish to divulge, why?

Watching Toy Story 3. The bond of a good friendship. Amazing.

What is a fashion trend you hope will never resurface?

Flouro colours. Enough said.

What car do you drive, best thing about the car and why you bought it?

A black Honda Civic Sport. Added a spoiler and blue lights to the interior of the car. Why did I buy it? I needed something a bit meatier than the green Suzuki Swift I had for years after being a poor University student.

If you were in a position where millions and millions of children globally admired you, what would be the one thing you would want to be a role model of?

Determination.

What is one of the most embarrassing moments you’ve had?

At Sky News presenters don’t often have time to pre-read and check scripts. One day, I read “paradigm” as “para-didg-im”. My colleagues have never let me forget that since.

Your best grooming tip?

With all the make up we use in the studio, getting it off is most important and moisturise…..well that’s what the make up girls at SBS said, so I just do what I’m told.

Keep an eye for Ricardo on SBS Evening News at 9:30pm.

For more information on Ricardo, contact romel@romelmanagement.com.au