This week at Casey film fever has hit, Pat’s provided a great summary of what we do to while away the hours outside of work, and we meet Macca our sparky alarm officiano and the gentleman about station

Station Update

This week work and stuff happened as usual, but we also made a movie!

A massive whole of station effort as ‘Casey Productions” rolled into town and the station became just as we’d imagine a film set to be… a hair and makeup department, costumes and props filling the Red Shed lounge area (along with a good coating of talcum powder…for white walker hair), special effects development, a production office set up in the mess, a stunt department, cinematography team with multiple cameras, lenses, tripods and extra batteries, and the sound and editing team.

Masses of people getting into costume, heading to film location, filming as quickly as possible (‘cause it was cold!), and then back to warm up, costume change, and then on to the next scene.

Exhausting. But, we think, a great success! All here undoubtedly impressed with the finished product.

For those uninitiated; each year the international community of Antarctic and sub-Antarctic stations enter into the Antarctic Winter Film Festival with an Open category (films made at any time over the past year) and the most fun and competitive 48 hour category (made between Friday night to Sunday night; with five items that must be included provided Friday afternoon to prove the filming was done post the provision of this information). This year the items to be included in the 48hr film included:

  • Object: Clock
  • Role on Station: Plumber
  • Action: Throwing/Tossing a boot
  • Sound: Fire Alarm
  • Quote: “I take your boots, your clothes, and your motorcycle” (from Terminator II)

The Casey submission has been based on our regular Wednesday night TV series (see Pat’s story below), Game of Thrones. We’ve made a trailer for the upcoming Season 8. I can see HBO just taking it in its entirety and using it for their upcoming advertising campaign and imagine that some of our cast might be contacted for future roles (or at least to be body doubles); the similarities are remarkable!

We may not win, but we think it’s pretty damn good. And, importantly, we had a lot of fun making it. And now, to see the competition.

Film Fest viewing and voting scheduled for Friday night. The coke, popcorn, choc tops and voting cards at the ready…

Rebecca (Casey SL) 

[If you’d like to see the final product it will be available on VIMEO from Tuesday (after the voting has concluded). Just do a search for Casey Station or AWFF 2018.]

Time Flies

Antarctica. The driest, highest, windiest coldest continent on the planet. Home to some of the most beautiful scenery and wildlife ever encountered. Unforgiving and wild. A place of adventure… A place of beauty… A place of… 

Now I could keep going on like this but that would not be the point I am trying to get across.

As an expeditioner, we do go on adventures, explore and mostly live every moment to the fullest experiencing all we can while we are here. As exciting as our lives seem here they are mostly riddled with social activities and training all the while trying to fit in a normal five and a half day working week.

Sunday is a late start for most. If you aren’t out exploring or have been out at a hut for the weekend there is yoga upstairs at 11. We test our flexibility with advanced yoga moves that take years to master, but we still give it a go none the less. Occasionally on Sunday there is a round of basketball in the green store; while some use this time to complete and polish off projects there are making in the workshop. 

The roller coaster continues on Monday nights in the Odeon with the weekly showing of a romantic film. Where the toughened expeditioners do their best to hide their whimpers and sobs from their neighbours.

Then there is Tuesday, after dinner, the brewing team put in the hard yards to brew the beer for the whole station, perhaps having a quite couple of ales in the process. The brew master and his team run a tight ship with many well done traditional and exotic beers being produced.

Wednesday is a GOT (Game of Thrones) night. Since the beginning of our winter season we have been watching three episodes of Game of Thrones every Wednesday night for around about 5 months which approximately 60 hours of action packed medieval conflict. The highlight of GOT night is watching grown adults turn up to the Odeon in their pyjamas. Catz our station doctor always arguing that her pyjamas are clearly lounge wear and thus thinks she’s exempt from judgment. 

After the big effort to stay up Wednesday night, Thursday can be mellow. After work, we huddle upstairs in the new bar to partake in a quick few rounds of darts before dinner. After dinner, though is when the real fun begins! GAMES NIGHT. It honestly amazes me how much fun we actually have on these nights. We might be playing some simple like Sequence or Sale of the Century (from the 70’s which the young expeditions don’t go so well at) but all the same it is a good night. Every now and again we break out the Cards Against Humanity. Now for anybody who has played this game you know that it is all about knowing what people find funny. Scotty, our projects carpenter on station, would say that he is the overall Cards against Humanity champion while the rest of the station would disagree with Scotty as he laughs uncontrollably at his own cards until we vote for him. 

We hold our station meeting after smoko on Friday which all expeditioners attend to gain important information that is upcoming or has happened through that week. It is an early finish for work on Fridays after lunch where the whole station partakes for the next 3 hours in either SAR training (Search and Rescue), LSA (Lay Surgical Assistant training), Fire training or Medical training. All in which are valued especially living in such an unforgiving environment.

Friday night is a socialising night where music is played upstairs in the bar and where most of us sit around and have a sociable drink and have a fun time to celebrate the end of the week.

Saturday starts with going to work in the morning and is closely followed by station cleaning duties. By the time the station is spick and span, Dom our Chef or the nominated slushies have brunch cooked for the station which is a delight since we only usually get bacon once a week.

Every second Saturday evening while Dom is preparing meals for our formal dinner others set up the mess. On most formal nights, we usually have an event or a dress up theme whether that be Medieval, ABC or onesie themes that end in a voting of the costume for the night. The events can range from Rude Bingo to an Anything Goes talent competition.

As you can tell life as station can be jam packed with ordinary things, all this being in an extraordinary place. In-between work commitments, our busy social schedule we do endeavour to see and experience as much of Antarctica as we can.

Time flies.

By Patrick Burchett 

5 min with the 71st ANARE crew: Shane McNamara

Name: Shane McNamara

Nicknames: Macca

From: Brisbane QLD

Previous seasons? First time south

Job title: Electrician

Describe your role in two sentences:

Routine Maintenance of various electrical & fire systems. Fault, alarm, fault, alarm, fault, alarm, fault, alarm, fault, alarm, fault, alarm, fault, alarm, fault, alarm, etc. Breakdown response.

What did you do before your joined the AAD? Project manager, electrical contracting.

What is your favourite part of your job here at Casey? Views. Every day under all conditions this place is spectacular.

If you were not a electrician, what would be your dream job?

Quality control tester of couches & TVs at the same time.

How does this season at Casey compare to your previous seasons down south?

First trip south. However I think this team & vibe will be hard to beat.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

Watching documentaries. Lots of reading-mainly Antarctic history.

What song sums up your Casey experience so far?

Beatles — Here comes the sun -do do do.

(After midwinters this has been an internal anthem).

What actor would play you in a film version of our 71st ANARE season here at Casey?

Ewan McGregor

What is your favourite hut for field trips and why?

Robbos. Great views, but mainly interesting & great people make places special.

Favourite piece of Australian Antarctic Division kit?

Base layer-thermals & socks. Men in tights syndrome.

What is your favourite book / movie (or both) and why?

The Brothers Grimsby. Laughed so hard it hurt.

Sasha Baron Cohen has always hit my funny bone.

What is your typical ‘Slushy FM’ genre? Do you have a particular favourite?

Blues, old school/new school the dirtier the better.

Describe your Casey experience with: a sight, a smell, a sound, a feeling and a taste.

Sight: So many shades of light on snow. Sun dogs.

Smell: Brewing has been a great source of various beer based aromas. All good.

Sound: When out of ear shot of the MPH. The sound of silence, so peaceful.

Feeling: How small & insignificant humans are when compared to the vastness of this planet, & the power of nature.

Taste: Amazing food prepared by our amazing chef. Thanks Dom!

Do you have a favourite quote that you’d like to leave us with?

I started out with nothing & still got most of it left.