29 December 2011

against the wind

Even non-Queenslanders amongst my small but dedicated readership will no doubt have read about the recent travails of Queensland Health, not least amongst which was some cove spiriting off some $16 mil of their needed-elsewhere-badly-not-to-mention-taxpayer-supplied dollars.

Then there was
Dr Patel and a few more 'incidents' that I will not presume to go into here.

Fault might ascribed to poor Ministerial decisions or oversight, or a department that is
simply too big, or any other pretty standard political/bureaucratic shortcoming that one could conjure up with little effort.

But no: the problem is something deeper, something a bit more existential, as a recent letter writer to our regional rag explained:

"Queensland Health was built on the spiritual nature of man and his relationship to the supreme being. Nowadays it is being pulled down by atheistic socialism."
As they are wont to say, "you can't argue with that."

Nonetheless your views are, as they are also wont to say, welcome.

26 December 2011

insert title here

I would just like to take this opportunity to wish all of my occasional reader the best of what you think you'd like as we head into this new/next /biggest whatever.

Over the past few days I have read a few things that make you go "wtf" and in some cases the nimble juxtaposition of some of these may have made the occasional reader go "hmmm....amateur" but fortunately I've forgotten them and, in any case, mere reporting here or even highlighting of the ironic juxtaposition would not have added to the sum of human understanding.

Ummm, offspring no 1 and I have been watching the Test and we have been...yeah, well, you know an' all.

Again, may you have all things and stuff.

25 November 2011

let's go

Well not the actual title of the song but right in the groove for a Friday night.

It still makes me smile...as do some of the comments.

Reaching even further back into the recesses of the memory, we get
this. Holy moley, there are actually some memories not exterminated by the quantities of beer that used to accompany going to a barn where these blokes might be playing.

Good times....

22 November 2011

sugar sugar

A taste of some hilarity to come.

Sorry about that pun there.

16 November 2011

god only knows

so Mrs VVB is flicking through the TV channels and suddenly there's Tony Abbott and I hear him say "...like you, sir, we are one nation indivisible under God..."
At that stage I started ranting and Mrs VVB was obliged to, again, (a) warn me of the dangers of going on like that and (b) change the channel.
Umm...we're not, are we?
Also, I suspect in this case 'sir' is capitalised.

14 November 2011

cheap wine

We went to see this concert here in rapidly warming Capricornia a few weeks ago.

It was exactly the same here in RARA land, with the possible exception that where we were standing, we could get a little cool breeze occasionally. Under the tent where the true rockers were, was probably a little warm.

The voice was awful to start with but gradually hit its straps.

Ian Moss was little short of supernatural: how he can keep going for two hours, with blistering (sorry about the cliche) solos every so often is just amazing.

The only real complaint was some of our fellow audience members who talked - and yelled, and argued, and had tedious in-depth personal discussions - most of the night. Second last song was Four Walls, performed with tenderness and restraint, and I could barely hear it as various groups around us continued the conversations/arguments/ diatribes they'd obviously started the previous weekend - or possibly previous decade.
Having to drive a fair way home, there was no wine, cheap or otherwise.

13 November 2011

like a rolling stone

Well there's stuff in this story that I wouldn't have dreamt of. Margaret Trudeau? Ronnie Wood? Really?

Anyway out of the gazillions of words that have been written about the Stones, these are some more.

Time to get some old CDs out.

12 November 2011

black is balck....is baclk....is black

Du de duddle duh... du du daaaa, du du duddle duh daaaaa... da dee duddle da du du daaaaaa ...... di duh da duh da daaaaoooooomph-a-oo

oooompha-a-ooooooompha- na naaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa etc...

For translation, go

Yep, that's what it is.

Also, have lost font options. Again. Buddddyyy blogggggerrrr.
No....they're back.
Is back.

04 November 2011

rough boy

I caught up with an old school friend last weekend - hadn't seen him for over 40 years. We exchanged e-mail addresses and cemented the reunion online...so to speak.

Epically strange...still digesting some aspects. Anyway given all of that I figured it was relatively safe to give him the link to VVB: it's semi-anonymous but various folk, mainly from work, have the secret password.

He wrote back to say he'd spent a pleasant (yes, I know...) few hours trawling my back pages and passed some kind comments on what he had read. Yes, I know, redux.

Anyway I've done similarly tonight and was quite taken with how much I used to write before I either (a) started trying to be wry, or (b) just got lazy.

All of which is simply a prelude to something entirely different, namely
this. I'm kind of a ZZ Top fan but I don't think I've ever seen a David Lynch film (he is a filmmaker isn't he, or an I mistaking him for someone else?). Not that it matters; it's a quite entrancing little article which is borne out by the entrancing little comments thread.

The ideal thing to post on a Friday night...sleep well.

03 November 2011

and now this

Now with added link to article that I could not add after I'd posted without.

Well it let me add it, but not post again.

WTF is going on?

you don't get me i'm part of the union

A couple of things struck me as I read this article.
First, evidently it's OK to refer to the The Association of Professional Engineers, Scientists and Managers (APESMA) as a "union". Valuing consistency as I do, I expect the ABC to also use the "union" word when it next refers to the Australian Medical Association. I mean, they are both associations of professionals, are they not? Somehow, I don't like my chances.
Second, and for a moment disregarding who said what to whom but accepting that somewhere in the murky midst there is a skerrick of truth to the article that design responsibilities will be sent offshore at some indeterminate future point, where does that leave Australian industry policy?
For those who have more interesting things in which to dabble, I should point out that "industry policy" as she has been practised in these parts for some decades has been that low value-added ("metal bashing") has gone offshore while Australia retains the vital higher value, more knowledge-intensive work.
Hah. Do we train as many engineers as China and India, even on a per capita basis?
So, what's the new policy? Well, once wages and costs in the "developing" countries get high enough, they'll need to outsource their low value added manufacturing.
At that time I suspect Lee Kuan Yew's comment about "poor white trash of Asia" might start to look fairly applicable.

23 October 2011

bad english

I am all in favour, particularly after visiting our local Woolies yesterday for the week's necessities and seeing some specials on a far wall under the banner "special toys for girl's and boys."

Evidently boys only come in plural while girls in the possessive. It makes a kind of surreal logic, I guess.
Also, I canm still not publish from the post. Have to go back into 'edit' and do it from there. Weird.

21 October 2011

the rise and fall of saddam hussein and the incredibly big spiders from mars

With Gaddafi's passing and the details about him being in a drain, we are again reading about Saddam Hussein who was found in a spider hole.
Has anybody thought to ask what kind of spider has a hole big enough that a man could fit inside?

20 October 2011

14 October 2011

wah wah

Some readers of this little blog will probably recognise this quote:

"Eric Idle tells how after Harrison was stabbed in his home by an intruder in 1999, he was being carried out by two medics who had only just started work. Harrison looked up from his stretcher and asked, "So, what do you think of the job so far?"
It's a new one on me but seems entirely plausible.

And in fact, after consumption of a couple of aged-in-the-fridge roses(*) at work and then a couple of gin & tonics at home, I feel a bit philosophical too.

I feel especially philosophical about some stuff that I read this morning and thought, "I could weave a little blog post about that" and promptly forgot about it/them until tonight when I was looking to weave just such a little blog post.

I wish I could remember them - quite poignant they were.

(*) Note to readers who have an RSS feed on this blog, for whatever unaccountable reason: something I did when putting that asterisk in was obviously a macro for "publish", because that's what happened. Hope you liked the original spelling, comes to to you courtesy of Seagrams and Schweppes.

12 October 2011

giggle eyed goo

In lieu of writing about nothing, allow me to introduce you to a new - I hope - mindworm or eyeworm; which, in the manner of all things modern, should probably be represented as iWorm.

Ha bloody ha, I kid you not. It's a laugh a week around these parts.

Anyway you may get the odd giggle

06 October 2011

what's going on

It's not that nothing is going on. It is, but it's nothing of interest to blog readers and I've run out of things that conceivably may be of interest to blog readers. And apart from the irretrievably obsessed, everyone seems to be writing less anyway.

But are they enjoying it more, we ask ourselves. Because there's no-one else in the room to ask.

I also done spellchecking, although it appears I have not done grammar.

21 September 2011

a...b.....c (*)

So now, all ABC radio news bulletins lead with "the Opposition (or Opposition Leader) said..." That will then be followed by a direct rebuttal by a Government Minister or reference to the Government's position on whatever the issue was.

So: is this the pro-Coalition bias that has the left-looniness of the blogosphere in perpetual meltdown? Or is it a subtle way of giving the Government the last word on everything, so as to get the correct message to listeners? But simultaneously confirming the rabid right's assertions that the ABC is nothing but a bed of communists?

(*) de jackson five

Confusing, is it not? All I want is the news. That said, one of the many joys of regional living is that, with all the driving I do, I spend an awful lot of time listening to the ABC. It is a good thing...along with regional living.

19 September 2011

advertising space (*)

You really really need to read this quite funny, in a try-hard sort of way, article but then read the comments. Why are Pommy commenters so much more cleverererer than our own variety? At least when not engaged in he said-she said point scoring on politics, in which endeavour they are indistinguishable.

(*) apparently a Robbie Williams song.

16 September 2011

it's the end of the world as we know it

Via Crikey, this from TV Tonight.

If not showing a footy game - oh all right, an important footy game - on high def television is a "rude shock", I suggest we should all pack up our tents and roll over now, because we're so far up a river in a barbed wire canoe...

End of the world? Hah.

14 September 2011

get your motor running

From online opinion blog KGB report:

"For years, US and Australian defence officials and ministers
have claimed that the Joint Strike Fighter would cost around $US65 million an aircraft. When that figure was first cited, the estimate conveniently forgot to include the engine and many other essentials."
You know, that sounds about right. Only last week I got a quote on a car, it sounded like a good deal so I bought it. I sat in the showroom for 5 hours until the salesman came and asked me did I also want the engine.

Caveat emptor.

13 September 2011

unfinsihed sympony

derarm deodorant or something. And then it hung completely and so I ahve gone back to the old interface and I like don;t care anmd all and they can do what they want. I don't even care about typos and like I can't be boteherd running spellcheck becaue it's just anoytjer way they try to mcircomanage you and all.

So therte.

Mr Denmore, I posted a comment about how "leadership" is the 'in' word for this year but no-one knows what it actually means in practical terms in any given circumstance, but everybody knows how to say it. Also, I spellchecked this bit out of deference to your insightful and erudite blog.

unfinished symphony

Bluuudddy blogggger, I just wanted to post a comment at Mr Denmore's blog but my gooooogle account doesn't have the privilege or the right code or un

29 August 2011

listen like thieves

It's now a settled component of the political process that pollies - mainly oppositions - have to embark on "listening tours". Media reports usually show them in staged situations "listening" to everyday folk who, amazingly, have the same beliefs. This subseqently enables them to confidently state that the "government has lost its way" or is "out of touch" or possbly "has turned into a menagerie of ibises."

I made that last one up, just a little bit.

Anyway, listening. It's happening everywhere:

And, oh, the "listening". Which genius of political grammar – Coulson? Hilton? Someone else with a name like a motorway services stop? – hit on the brilliant idea of "listening" as a synonym for "shutting you up"?

PS: God, something's gone awry with bluuudddyy bblllooggger again, the pade doesn't loook lie it should, no buttons for spellcheck or font and it's all dammmmmnnneeed wwwrrrroooong. And all my tags are gone.

25 August 2011

i've been everywhere

If I am getting these annoying hyperlinks telling me about a Brisbane 'mom' (sic) on virtually every website - including Aunty as you can see - have I got a virus? Or are they indeed everywhere?

Have screenshot, can't upload it.

14 August 2011

back on the chain gang

To respond to Gerry's question on the last post, yes I've been away and only with access to a work computer that I don't like to use to post blog pieces, even in my own time. Could have gone to an internet cafe I guess...but I didn't.

Any way it was a good break to go and do some other work and cacth up with a lot of people I haven't seen for a long time.

28 June 2011

freestyler wokka mokka phone

Are you blogging more and enjoying it less?

Or blogging less and enjoying it more?

Do you love Freeview?

Kelloggs, anyone?

Thought so.

24 June 2011

all the leaves are

Although I first read about them some years ago, I have just discovered the Decemberists. Calloo callay.

22 June 2011


I had an idea for a TV advertisement. The purpose of the advertisement would be to inform people about the costs to the healthcare system of people who get sick - and when I say sick, I mean fixin' to die sick - from smoking. Maybe if people realised the impost on their taxes through the healthcare system, there would be more of a mass movement to reduce the incidence of smoking throughout the population.

I would use the notion of an old fashioned nanny. That is to say, an older, larger, warmer, in a dress and pinafore nanny, the style of nanny you think of when you maybe think about the upbringing of the
privileged scions of earlier generations. I believe there is an alternate image of nannies based on some recent, populist notion of them being strict and harsh. Probably a short term ratings winner but no resonance, you know what I mean?

The nanny would be all soft and comforting, you know, and would say that if you really understood the social and financial burden that your smoking brought on the whole population, including your city, your neighbourhood, your workmates, your friends, your family, yourself, you'd reconsider the habit.

The language would be as one would use to a child to get him or her to modify behaviour that they know is unhelpful, but just need a push. The tone would be uplifting and hopeful to insinuate that, with your help, we'll all be better off.

What do you reckon?

19 June 2011

bad moon rising

Actually, I think this is quite an excellent moon rising over Villa VVB.

18 June 2011

ub (bs) 40

So I'm browsing one of my favourite time-wasters, Listopia, and I run across this.

"WTF?" I think to myself because, as you know, most thinking is mainly internal or, as some would have it, mental.

So I'm mentally thinking to myself about wtf is this so I have to
google it and I get there. For reasons that are usually described as "unaccountable", which is in fact a euphemism for "wtf?", I decide to look at the one which "explains" the strip, rather than the strip itself.

Here is a random selection of one, I now bid you bye-bye for some two to three months.

I just love the deadpan reconstruction of the strip which is mimicked totally by the commenters. One can only marvel in the fact that there are squillions of people out there doing this sort of stuff, when in point of fact most of them should be heavily sedated and kept in lion cages.

With lions.

Anyway, I now know about ubbs.

05 June 2011


Appropos of absolutely nothing at all, I had a random thought about quite common phrase. So I looked it up on Wikipedia and this is what I found:

The form without the hyphen is also commonly seen, but can be
construed as a "wild chase", but not an inevitably fruitless one, after a
possibly domesticated and flightless goose, rather than after a
Who'd have thought it was so complicated?

Lovers of 60s and 70s pop and rcok might like
this one. Even though youtube shows other songs, I think they were pretty much one-hit wonders with this one.

03 June 2011

deja vu

Sometime back in late 2007, I wrote this:

"they might turn out to be incompetent but at least they won't be bastards"

I do believe I deserve a pat on the back for prescience.

And a boot up the clacker for smartarsery.

But it's a shame that it turned out to be so close.

31 May 2011

drop bears

Seriously. If you downvoted this you're no better than a
panda who won't screw to save it's species.
This is the "this" referred to above (NB: safe link, esp. if you likez de musickz.

I agree. Fuck dem pandaz, this is the duck's guts.

Also, as quote lifted verbatim, the superfluous apostrophe is not mine. But I felt it needed a reincarnation in case it could find a place to hide.

30 May 2011

the french lieutenant's route

...to continue with gnawing things to death, which is what our slogan says we are going to do...

What is it with adopting the American pronunciation of "route" as "rowt"? Now everybody does it. Everywhere. Except me, that is.

I was at a meeting this morning, it's a bunch of dinkum Aussies talking about local Aussie issues and we get "rowt".

I mean, it can't be because if we say it the way we have for the last 200 years, people are going to think we are talking about a bit of the old hide the sausage, even if the subject du jour happens to be a bloody road, for crying out loud?

What is wrong with people?

Although for 200 odd years we pronounced it "leftenant", whereas the Yanks' "lootenant" is somewhat closer to the original French, for those who can't do anything other than front-of-mouth voicings that is.

I mean, what is wrong with people?

Also, I can't be bothered trying to think of an appropriate musical title, so I thought of another that tickled my tickle. Hope you like it. There's another 'tradition' down the gurgler.

29 May 2011

who's going to drive you home tonight?

In lieu of several thousand words (ha! as if that was in any way likely...) here are some pictures. They appeal to me for all sorts of reasons.

Today was a day out.

22 May 2011

the american songbook

I think I read some time ago that to have a popular blog, one must post regularly. So on that basis either I actually don't want a popular blog, or else I simply ain't gonna get one on account of aforesaid lack of regularity, etc etc. I see my posts number in the 950s so some time soon - provided you define soon in periods of decades or more - I will hit the big 1000, at which time I will lay myself down and have a really long sleep, on account of all the energy, etc etc.

In the meantime, I note that a recent Americanism, namely dropping the word "of" after "couple", as in "I got a couple things to tell ya", has hit the Australian MSM (provided you categorise a Murdoch Sunday scandal rag as MSM) and no doubt will thereafter infiltrate its way into ordinary everyday conversation in much the same way that "get-go" did a couple years ago. See, I told you it wouldn't take long. No one ever listens to me. Because I'm not regular, I suppose. Damnably frustrating, it is.

In the other meantime, people have woken up to the fact that all politics is sheeet, man, and have switched off. I heard this straight from the mouth of a well-known sportsman only recently and I tell you, if you want an opinion on contemporary politics, a sportsman is your first stop. The good oil, I tells ya.

I really wish I had some more things with which to enlighten youse but, right from the get-go, I never have. Had.

In yet another meantime in a galaxy not too distant from my current position, a sheeeet-load of work awaits so I'd better get to it. See you in a few years.

12 May 2011

jacob's ladder

Jacob Jester Pastor Poster

You wouldn't read about it.

Unless, of course, you just did.

I'll say it again: Jacob Jester Pastor Poster

Quite tickled my fancy, that did.

As you were.

05 May 2011

fox on the run

"I'm actually shocked that no fact-checking was done on the
lyrics," Way wrote. "I mean Fox is a major news channel, covering factual topics in an unbiased and intelligent – oh wait – to quote the man himself – 'You don't have to live by the standards that society has set'. I couldn't agree more."
Personally, I'm not into critical analysis - or unhinged ranting for that matter - about US media personalities, Fox News and so on. To my (admittedly tiny) mind, it's a bit too much 'left wing talking points' in character. And if we want to criticise, dog knows we have enough of similar ilk here. But I do find much of that online discourse mind-numbingly repetitive and singularly unable to add to the sum of human knowledge. Yes, they're awful. Fortunately, they're over there.

this article - from which the above excerpt originated - quite tickled me.

04 May 2011

sunshine superman

See if you can guess what this article is about from the following comment:

Quick, get Carlton to sign him up. This would fix the weakness in our backline.
Probably the best of them all and a cut above the repetition for sure.

29 April 2011

xxxx insert wedding musical references here xxxx

While we were waiting for Escape to the Country to come on and thereby complete our evening, Mrs VVB and I were kind of obliged to watch the nuptials. I was quite taken with the two bros done up like human Christmas trees - I have never seen so much gold braid since Field Marshall Amin departed the scene - and that Harry's hair has probably never seen a comb since he was two.

Anyway it was a jolly jape for Mrs VVB and me and then they announce some hymn commissioned especially for the occasion. The opening bars sounded and - I swear this is the truth - Mrs VVB and I looked at each and said, "Rip off! But what from?"

It took me a minute or two.
Electric Dreams. I kid you not.

Anyway Escape to the Country's on, so ta ta.

26 April 2011

love and marriage

More ways to celebrate the impending hereditary lineage extension process than you thought possible!

Fortunately, some of these are singularly tasteless. More tasteless than you thought possible! Hurrah for human ingenuity! And bad taste! Hurrah for those of us who revel in the bad taste!!!

23 April 2011

the music, i haz it inside

Yesterday, after 30 sec0nds of morning TV (please don't tell me people actually watch that stuff) I decided to delve into the mountainous mountains of concert DVDs what we own. Ended up having them on most of the day, what a day it was. The highlights:

Toto in 1990. Every rock star pose cliche known to man. But with fabulous musicianship such as you would only get from a bunch who began as session musos.

Cat Stevens in a very intimate concert singing songs from Teaser and the Firecat, accompanied by another bloke on guitar and - very occasionally - a bloke on bass. Apparently I was got this as a gift for Christmas, Mrs VVB was not happy when I did not recognise it as such.
What a voice. Then he introduces a song as one "I wrote before I entered my second life as a pop star." This was On the road to find out which of course contains the lines, "Kick out the devil's sin, pick up pick up the good book now." This of course before he picked up a different good book and entered a third life. At the end of the DVD, a short cartoon of Teaser and Firecat which I swear was voiced by Harry Secombe and Spike Milligan as most of it sounded like Ned Seagoon and Eccles.

Mid 70s Fleetwood Mac. Holy moloney can that Lindsay Buckingham play guitar. Gives you - or me, at least - the shits.

ELO. Great music, I retain a wholly irrational dislike of Jeff Lynne. But playing Do Ya is very cathartic, even me on an acoustic.

Neil Diamond - after 34 hours, it all sounds the same, but again, a great talent.

So today we went to JB and picked up a few more. The Who at the Isle of Wight 1970. I'd previously never seen any footage of Keith Moon in action. Once you have, the rest becomes clear.

Powderfinger's final concert at the Brisbane Riverstage. I wish I'd been there. Nothing short of magic.

15 April 2011

papperbock writer

In the matter of writing and reading English - surely the more accurate order, chronologically speaking - I see Ms Pants has been at it also. Ms Pants observes that, despite her meticulous attention to detail, she will certainly have overlooked some minor point that will undermine her entire argument. And indeed she has. I will direct her to hyphens and apostrophes. Note lack of paragraphical (insert hysterical laughter here) formatting herein, it is supposed to have no fewer than four.

even shorter answer


short answer

Gerry has requested I do some more posts to test for patterns in the myriad ways that Blogger has been buggerising about with formatting etc in recent days. This is one such post. Its topic, should I ever in fact get around to reaching it, is the time-worn one of people being interviewed who don't answer the question. Usually it's pollies but today it was a senior seat-polisher being interviewed about the success - or otherwise - of his organisation in catching international croox. The question put was whether the organisation's work had resulted in the po-lice catching more of said croox. The response went along these lines: "We have increased coordination, collaboration and working together with other agencies and we are taking more strategic positions." I thought it was pretty priceless, hence my ability to remember it almost word for word even though it was way back in the morning when I heard it. Now let's test that formatting, nicht war?

11 April 2011

all shook up

I see that Blogger is unilaterally removing paragraphs, and probably other things as well. Just so you know, it wasn't me.

turn the beat around

In this extract we turn the protagonists around, thusly: "Meanwhile, in other news the conservative NZ government presses on with a PP ploy to deliver UFB - which is to say Ultra Fast Broadband - to 70% of the citizenry at speeds approaching 100 mbps. Naturally the Labor opposition fiercely opposes the waste and the extravagance, and condemns the plan as certain to fail. Which leaves the citizenry lost in a wasteland featuring the most appalling and expensive broadband service to be found in an allegedly civilised country ... Mention viewing videos on the full to overflowing intertubes and contemplate the blank faces. Viz and to wit, indeed. If you are of suitable disposition you can read the whole thing, follow the links to the Sheehan article, poke your eyeballs out while reading that, then note that the comments which follow are hardly supportive of that same poor benighted journo. And they reckon that News Ltd moderates its comments pages? Hardly! Mind you, they are in an increasing spot of bother in the Old Dart, eh what?

09 April 2011

am I ever

(gonna see your face again) The politicosphere is so shallow (I'd like to create a verb from shallow as I believe it could become, like, so institutionalised and, like, ubiquitous and stuff) so I ain't gonna be writin' about none o'that sheeeeeeet evah again. unless John Howard comes back. But other stuff, well it, like, you know. So I'm just gonna have to share it with everybody, like, you know.

30 March 2011

this much is true

The only matching lid and container components in any kitchen plastic ware drawer will be of items that are quite unsuitable for taking lunches to work. Indeed, they will be for uses that simply defy imagination. Anything suitable for taking lunches to work will be found only as either lid or container. In other news, when will it stop raining? My lunch is getting wet.

25 March 2011

push pineapple

The column is average, the photo is highly disturbing, the comments are priceless:

"They look like Phil Tufnell on acid and Jimmy Hill in drag. I bet their sex life is awesome"

"Must get my husband a Santa suit. He's just in from the pub and said ok "

"are they from the planet agadoo"

....and by far the best and this week's wiiiiiineeeerrrr....

"Urinal Ritchie? I prefer Eurethra Franklin."

23 March 2011

reflections of my life

Appropos of nothing that I care to explain here, so apologies and all that kind of necessary stuff that is necessary when you make comments like that, I had cause to retrieve a book from the bookcase the other day. It was a book of high school poetry (*sort of - more soon) in which something I had written had appeared.

This was all a long, long, long, quite long, time ago.

*What I wrote was barely English, let alone poetry, but it was chock-a-block with teen angst and accordingly had been unkindly but accurately stereotyped into the part of the book headed "barely English, let alone poetry, but these people need their hormones relieved soon or there will be serious repercussions."

You get the picture, unwholesome though it may be.

Anyway, and this is where the story really begins (#), I was leafing (did you like that verb? very redolent of...I dunno, trees or something, and almost poetic) through the book and I saw a name that looked familiar.

It was the name of the person who lives

Who woulda thunk it, as they say. Even though the world was smaller then, it's actually smaller now. Gives one pause for thought, doth it not?

#For any Goons fans who may be reading this.

16 March 2011

all the...small things

Twice within the last month one side of my glasses has sprung apart, the lens dropped out and the tiny weeny screw....

In both cases we found it. Not bad for a pair of geriatrics who actually need glasses to see...quite big things, actually.

I'd meant to get some
Loctite after the first incident. I used to routinely pull apart each new pair of glasses and apply a drop to each screw thread to prevent such occurrences. The little bottle got thrown out in our move to sunny - well actually, currently not so sunny - Capricornia. I must hie me to the local 'ardware shop fifthwith.

Meanwhile, as I age into grumpy old man conservatism, I
start rethinking a lifelong objection to the death penalty. On the other hand, such criminals should be prevented from breeding...

05 March 2011

losing my religion

Here's what a bloke I know would have called a rattling good yarn.

The Aussie papers are currently full of the issue of the proportion of public funds going to private, often church-owned, schools.

And the debates about teaching ethics vs religion, whether in general or a specific variant, in class in public schools.

When I were but a boy, we used to get religion in class once week. One week the insert noun here came and, during the lesson, made us close our eyes and put up our hands if we wanted to be 'saved' and have lots of good things happen to us.

Having been brought up, strictly, to do as I was told by figures of authority I closed my eyes and put my hand up.

To discover that all that had happened was that I had signed up for Sunday school at one the local churches.

I may have only been 8 or 9 at the time but I eventually figured out that a churchly figure of authority have abused the trust of a (then) Innocent child.

Goodbye organised religion.

My opinions have only gone downhill since then.

learning to breathe

Why would anybody be surprised (surprised m'lud? why I was aghast, I tell you, simply aghast)!

When capitalism insinuates itself
where it really be better off not.

No, not capitalism. But that other behaviour that a market economy encourages: greed.

Seems to poison the bastion of clear - and, importantly - longer term thinking.

You'd expect differently of a university, surely?.

01 March 2011

get a haircut and get a real job

As someone who has laboured within the machine - or more accurately but superfluously, a series of machines - for some 40 years, I was mightily taken with Ms Pants' stories about some of her recent encounters with the bureaucracy. Tales of the entirely expected, as it were. So taken was I that I sent the link to a number of friends and one replied with a description of some of his own experiences. Read on...

"Coincidentally when I first got up here I had a similar experience(s). I went to one of the recognised employment agencies with my resume, and after some banal questioning they said I should do a Word and Excel test.

I said, 'didn't you read my resume, I've been working in IT for thirty years.'

She said, 'sorry sir, it's our policy that you do a Word and Excel test and also a typing test.'

(Yes, they made me do a typing test as well!).

I finished the test and she said I did well on the Word test, but my Excel and typing were only average. I replied that the difference between being average and excellent on the Excel test was only about four hours and in any case I wasn't looking for a data entry position.

I just got up and walked out and never heard from them again.

Amazing experience.

At another place across the road they asked me to sign an agreement to lock me into their services and I said I'd take the long document home to read and bring it back.

Well, the roof fell in...should've seen the woman's face drop. 'You can't do that...take this away from the office!'

Me: 'But I want to read it properly before I sign it.' The manager was called, papers were rustled, faces were frowned. No, I could not take it away and read it. I had to read it right there.

I got up and walked out. This time I rang DEST and got onto a nice bloke who was horrified. He got onto them ,they rang me and apologised and said I could take the paper away. I didn't bother."

There is of course a somewhat ironic twist to posting this blog. Despite hours of searching for fixes, I am still unable to copy and paste between programs. Thus, I had to type his story out in full. And no, I am not a good typist.

18 February 2011

you can't do that

What I can't do is cut or copy 'n paste. Still. I google the problem and get 367 gazillion hits, all of which may as well be written in Korean for the sense I can make of them.

What I wanted to copy 'n paste was the comment by bro2uncle about how the
video "co-insides" with the lyrics. I cannot but agree. I note I can copy 'n paste the URL. But not the words.

And I am fed up to the back teeth with things being "rolled out". Can we possibly just occasionally implement or introduce? Because they're, like, words too? Like, English words with meaning?

13 February 2011

i got rhythm

Quite some years ago I read The Mosquito Coast by Paul Theroux after seeing a review in the newspaper, and through it became quite a fan.

For some time I was mesmerised by the flow of his words. He would insert some speech which often seemed at odds with the narrative; an invitation to meander even while engrossed in the story.

Principally he aroused in me a seemingly pointless ambition to insert colons and semi-colons anywhere and everywhere. Even today I will write some piece of officialese and find I have dropped a semi-colon or two therein: the conundrum then is whether they should remain. Bureaucratese is not an habitual resting place for these undervalued grammatical oddities.

So it was predictable tonight that I would be interested when I came across
this Theroux piece. I had to read it, not least because I am sick of reading bitter polemic everywhere else.

The article is all in that familiar, lolloping rhythm that I first noticed all those years ago; his style hasn't changed at all. His insights may be a little more stilted now, I much preferred his reflection of the UK at the time (The Kingdom by the Sea). This one is full of points being made, rather portentously. Results of fame, I guess.

And I still have in my head the observation he made about Australians - specifically Australian backpackers - in The Great Railway Bazaar. Travelling third class across pre-Islamic Revolution Iran, he noted that when travelling in the lowest class possible, there would inevitably be Australians there. It seemed intended as an insult but probably more accurately reflected a national pragmatism; less spent on train tickets, more to spend on booze.

09 February 2011

how bizarre how bizarre

Bizzare? You bet.

I apologise for this link. I originally clicked on the story in the SMH but then this incredible, irresistible force made me......yes your Honour, it made me.

So onlookers applauded? Presumably because she breathed, or walked, or possibly did both simultaneously.

Celebrities, they are a different race.

Mainly because when they get their pictures taken, their mouths are always wide open.

Presumably aids in doing that breathing thing.

Best not to look at the knuckles, then.

However, as for onlookers and their behaviour...my mind has boggled.

07 February 2011

all the young dudes

Look, regardless of the legalities or the rights and wrongs and even of the role of wikileaks within an MSM-dominated world, Julian Assange is a dude. A fucking dude, man. He oozes cool.

I'd love to have Geoffrey Robertson QC declaiming from the computer while I was at work. I would be so empowered! Bring back Hypotheticals!

Also, I was privately (well actually not, now that I've written it, I guess) appalled that Bianca Jagger was not allowed to jump the queue.

Also, I wonder at the wisdom of supporters turning up in Guantanamo-style boiler suits. With friends like these, as the saying goes.

cat empire

Just as well you get to read the headline first. If you looked at the picture and read its caption first, it would indeed be a "wtf?" moment.

Back in tha day, which back in tha day used to be rendered as "back in my day", a wtf moment would have been described differently, perhaps as "bizarre".

However, we can thank modern technology for giving us wtf, which is so much more expressive.

Actually, on reflection we can thank modern teaching methods.

But if we were given to reflecting deeply, and with prejudice, we would have substituted "blame" for "thank."

Meanwhile, I was immensely reassured to learn that the 1968 Theft Act applies to kittens.

Does it, however, we must ask ourselves, apply equally to kittehs?

Modern life, it poses so many conununundrums.

02 February 2011

i get a round

I've whinged previously about the word "around" colonising the pseudo-policy space, as in "we need to have some responses around that issue."

I work with some people who seem to use it every 5th word.

However today's effort by Ian Thorpe, announcing his insert verb here to competitive swimming, takes the cake. Unfortunately the
clip is not verbatim, but Thorpe said he would focus "around" the 100m and 200m lengths.

By which I took him to mean 99m, 101m, 199m and 201m.

Only time will tell.

In the meantime, all good thoughts for our coastal - and indeed not coastal - neighbours to the north of Capricornia.

15 January 2011


Watching the tennis, on and off. Saw the national anthem. Heard the recently introduced didgeridoo intro, for authenticy don't you know. Heard the typically strangulated fake American vowels of the "performer."

Saw the crowd. Saw the bogans. Saw the bogans put their hands on their hearts. Especially saw the class boganette put her hand on her heart while continuing to clasp the flute of bubbly in the other hand. What a special look, what pride in country.

Went outside to puke.

04 January 2011

baby you can drive my car (n+1)(n+1) and another 1

It's so long ago since I was doing the series on cars I've owned that I have quite forgotten whether I had covered all them - as represented by models in collection - or not.

But as I have got lucky with two new models ordered over Christmas (including a replica red Peugeot Mi16 bought from un homme in la belle France and for which I eagerly await, I thought I would regale my reader(s) with a picture of part of the current collection.
The ones on the top shelf are models of cars I've actually owned, the others are of models I considered signifcant Aussie cars in real life.
It gives me much pleasure (as the joke used to go) and I love the smell of the cabinet they're in. This is important. I sniff it often.

02 January 2011

don't dream it's over

But in Detroit, it is.

Utterly chilling. Post-industrial doesn't really sum it up.

About Me