There has been a lot of discussion in class about the “falling out” between the Adelaide Advertiser and the Adelaide Fringe, resulting in the Advertiser not registering any reporters this year to produce official Adelaide Fringe reviews.
My students are confused, as are many artists, so I have taken the opportunity to apply some MBA Thinking to the matter.
The simplest analogy I’ve arrived it is this: Two estranged parents have reached a complicated stage in their relationship with their polyamorous friend, and the friend’s children are not getting the love, support, and attention they believe they should.
So let’s unpack this.
For the sake of this analogy, I am choosing CIS-gendered characters, just so it’s easier for my students to follow along. I know that families come in all different sizes, shapes, and flavours.
After a little toss, my coin determined arbitrarily that The Advertiser would be the daddy and InDaily would be the mummy. Their polyamorous friends is, of course, the Adelaide Fringe, and the Fringe’s children are the Fringe artists.
Worth noting that having 1200 children is quite an eye-boggling number, even compared to the known progeny of Boris Johnson!
Daddy, it seems, has said publicly that the polyamorous friend stopped giving him favours and started taking him for granted. To the rest of us who are neighbours and who have overseen and overheard things, there is a little truth in this but also we think daddy has a richer memory of how amazingly dedicated he was than some of the children can remember. While sometimes his attention was spot on, he was increasingly forgetting children’s names, birthdays, and favourite themes. But, to be fair, when daddy did show affection to a child, they gained many new friends and became very popular.
Mummy, on the other hand, has had a growing interest in the polyamorous friend from her first days on the scene but only in latter years has she really decided to express herself and moved with more determination to win her friend’s affections. This year, the relationship seems to have been consummated with a “commercial arrangement” and that was the last straw for daddy.
The polyamorous friend and their children
For the Fringe, the polyamorous friend, they say they’ve been doing the best they can to maintain love, affection, and access, between both parents and the Fringe’s children.
They have had to scale back some of the love and treasures they used to give their children, like a special nighttime cubby house, but they do give their children one free meal a week if the children register for it on a first come first served basis.
The children seem a little lost.
Some of the older children who have their own TV and radio shows, they get lots of friends and attention without needing mummy or daddy but all three adults still give them a little extra wink and nod because it’s hard to ignore that self-starting X-factor.
But for many other children, they are left to wander the streets, looking for small acts of mercy. Little did they realise they’d need to form their own tribes or even pay a little extra to be part of the fancy garden clubs.
So what does Honorary Professor Whitney Houston say?
If we turn to the inspiring words of Honorary Professor Whitney Houston, I think we can get to the bottom of what needs to happen, namely, mummy, daddy, and the polyamorous friend should find a way to sit down together and nut out a solution for the children.
As Prof Houston sang,
I believe the children are our future
Teach them well and let them lead the way
Show them all the beauty they possess inside (by doing reviews)
Give them a sense of pride to make it easier (to sell tickets)
Let the children’s laughter remind us how we used to be