Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Community Cup

On the train ride to Elsternwick en route to the Community Cup, white Melburnians will try to remember the last time they were south of the river; which was this time last year during the Community Cup. While laughing at Fred Negro's dick jokes retains a certain appeal, the best part about the Community Cup is getting to watch a football game but convincing yourself it's just for community radio and raising money for charity.

At some point during the day, white Melburnians will discuss how different it feels south of the river, and it's best to agree with them if you want to fit in. They might even go so far as to describe it as a 'different world', and in a way it is. Southside is closer to the coast, so the air pressure is different. It's further from Tullamarine so there are less planes in the sky. It has been a wealthy area for longer than Northside, and this is reflected in the architecture and landscaping.

But these features are of minimal concern for most white Melburnians, who only created the distinction between North and South to augment their own feelings of superiority. White Melburnian identity is largely based on geography, so they have expended a great deal of energy constructing artificial spatial boundaries in exchange for cultural capital. This is why they refuse to believe you when you point out that cycling from Fitzroy to South Yarra is way quicker than from Fitzroy to Coburg. They want to be reassured they have made the culturally superior consumer choices. Even though feeling superior about where you rent is kind of oxymoronic, especially if your parents are paying.

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