Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Sex, drugs and orgies with TV and sporting stars.

Rob Astbury
Rob Astbury barely scratched the surface of an amazing life when he wrote the best seller King and I, detailing his 20 year love affair with Graham Kennedy, Australia's first major TV star who was billed as the King Of Comedy.

Astbury’s second book, an autobiography entitled Twice as Hard, opens with the words: “I’m on my way to have my homosexuality removed. They’re going to take it out like a bad tooth that’s been rotting in my head….’’

Twice as Hard goes beyond the Kennedy era to uncover Astbury’s youthful struggle to stop falling in love with his mates; his rise to the pinnacle of television sports journalism; a drug-fuelled decline into sexual depravity; rebirth and riches in Queensland’s Gold Coast real estate jungle, and finally finding peace of mind and the love of his life in a gay bar in Thailand.

Tracy Grimshaw
Along the way he rips aside the slick veneer of showbiz and TV stardom to reveal the true character of household names including Eddie McGuire, Jana Wendt, Tracy Grimshaw, Derryn Hinch, Don Lane, Bert Newton and Daryl Somers. Astbury knew them all, intimately, and he even found time for a hilarious, but terrifying, encounter with Kerry Packer.
Astbury also spurned the advances of singer Peter Allen, the subject of the successful Broadway musical The Boy From Oz which catapulted Hugh Jackman into superstardom.

He describes television as a despicable industry and his explanation will have stars and TV executives on tenterhooks. And if the lawyers don't maul the manuscript (tSS has read it) many popular and well known sporting stars may be outed.

Frightening-Kerry Packer

At the pinnacle of his media career Astbury was Australia’s highest paid television sports reporter. Although he won many awards there were stories that were simply too hot to touch. However, this book may lift the lid with controversial revelations about football's biggest star sand also sports administrators, many of whom are still today’s mover sand shakers.

Sam Newman
But it wasn’t all wine and roses. A road accident set Astbury on a downward spiral of addiction, initially to medicinal, and then recreational, drugs. Along with the drugs came sex, more of it than most men could handle.

Until one day he found himself answering the front door to the host of Channel Nine's Footy Show Sam Newman while reeling from the after effects of a full scale orgy involving 40 or so whores, mates and showbiz stars, regulars at such events at his Toorak mansion. He didn’t exactly see God in Newman’s face, but he did see something else – the realization that death was the inevitable finale to his excesses.

Peter Allen
Rebirth began with his mother pulling him back from the brink –literally. He was about to jump from the balcony of an exclusive Gold Coast hotel when she intervened.

Astbury stayed on in Queensland, forging himself a second fortune and a swag of real estate awards to go with the ones he won for his ground breaking sports journalism.

Eventually he decided another rebirth was necessary, this one in Thailand, a land full of the people his racist, war hero father had taught him to hold in contempt. But Astburyfor adoration.

At first it was the kid in a lolly shop attraction of the gay bars, and a different lover every night. But then came HIV, and the love of a man known as The Deer.

Astbury's 2006 book King & I was a best seller but it drew mixed reactions mainly from those who wanted Kennedy's image to remain intact even though his homosexuality was well known. Following it's success Astbury considered a political role standing for the Senate as a gay rights campaigner.

In the end he chose to remain living his current life as a successful property developer in Thailand where healso operates a model dairy in the North.
Following the Shuttle's revelation that a facebook page Eddie Mcguire is ruining the 2010 Winter Olympics coverage, wit hover 10,000 members had started after Eddie McGuire's gay digs at the ice skating stars, nearly 30 top name footballers and coaches are joining in a campaign to begin next month calling for more understanding in sports of gay and lesbian issues.

Eddie 'Everywhere', one of the countries biggest stars issued a press release (ignored by nearly all except the Shuttle)proclaiming his own disappointment in his remarks and promised to do better. The ensuing controversy after the broadcasts eventually made it onto the front page of The Sun newspaper in the UK . Eddie is one of the big names who will front the campaign.