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Thursday, June 22, 2017

Not the 9 o'clock news


A man who smashed up make-up counters with a baseball bat inside a southwest Sydney shopping centre has been taken to hospital for a mental health assessment. Did his wife max out their credit card on new eye liners?

"The Sun" reports that the residents who lost their homes in the Grenfell Tower will be permanently housed in Kensington High Street in a £2 billion ($A3.3 billion) development with flats - with one, two or three bedrooms - that will be fully furnished. It gives the term 'social housing' a completely new meaning.

As barking mad as it may sound, a Dr Mark Reeve told ABC Radio Adelaide's Afternoons program that brushing your dog's teeth regularly could help you save a fortune in vet bills. Just don't use your own toothbrush.

Balinese authorities confirm the hole used by four inmates, including an Australian, to escape from Kerobokan jail could have been dug from either inside or outside the facility. Why? Was there a third option?

People living in regional Australia not only use social media more than those living in cities, but also encounter greater bullying and harassment, a new report has found. Why? Don't regional computers have a DELETE button?

A study suggests that Australians should show 'cultural sensitivity' towards migrant men who physically abuse their wife and children. Going one step further, a court put a teenager who had immigrated to Australia from Afghanistan on two years probation with no conviction after he had pleaded guilty to a series of sex attacks on a Surfers Paradise beach. The judge accepted that seeing girls in bikinis is different to the environment in which he grew up. Think what I as an ex-German could've got away with!

Boris Becker has been declared bankrupt by a British court after the former tennis player failed to pay a long-standing debt. His lawyer said Becker was “not a sophisticated individual when it comes to finances,” and that bankruptcy was likely to have an adverse effect on Becker’s image. “He should have thought about that a long time ago,” the registrar said.

And Sydney commuters take advantage of an Opal charge-card loophole by travelling to and from Sydney Airport for a mere $3.38: the system allows them to tap off with a negative balance and then throw the card away without having to pay the full fare of $18.62. Pure genius!



Super(-ior) rules from 1st July

The fall and fall of BHP


Our politicians, having woken up from their usual slumber and discovered to their dismay that there are some undeserving ordinary citizens who have saved enough in their self-managed superannuation funds to equal or even exceed these fat-cats' non-contributory parliamentary super pay-outs, acted with uncommon speed to put a limit on those funds.

Anything in excess of this newly-imposed and quite arbitrary limit needs to be taken back out of the superfunds by 30th June or else be taxed at a higher rate as well as attract nasty fines.

Funny how this reminds me of the Burmese military junta who in 1975 stopped my employers, TOTAL - Compagnie Française des Pétroles, from ordering company cars for our expatriate staff - moi included - from Germany which, as they had rightly guessed, wouldn't have been Volkswagen Beetles. Only the president himself and his generals were allowed to drive through Rangoon's maddening traffic in shiny Mercedes limousines, and so we had to settle for Peugeot 504s from France.

Well, thanks to the calamitous state of the world and ever-nosediving commodity prices, the share market (and BHP) has been in a downward trend since late January. Yesterday's sharp drop really put the knife into it, which saves me from doing any transferring-out to comply with our politicians' fit-of-jealousy threshold. Thanks for small mercies!



Wednesday, June 21, 2017

What's on the telly?

'There's a smell in here that will outlast religion.'
'There's another classic example of someone having a two inch arsehole and us having installed only one inch piping.'

[advice on getting married] 'Cut out the middle man; find someone you hate and buy them a house.'
'There's the urinal, and being a male, you have a prong on you that points forward, so I don't understand how they get it on their feet. They must point it down.'
'I'd love to be able to say "I plumb toilets" and have someone say "Now that is something I've always wanted to do"'.


Some time ago the wife left me in no doubt that "Dust!" was not the correct answer; however, there was plenty on it after two telly-free months when I finally switched it on last night to watch David Stratton's "Stories of Australian Cinema".

Lovers of Australian movies will adore this documentary series with its glimpses of the most moving moments, the most unforgettable scenes and the ones that caused us pain. The series also revisits some of those times when a line of dialogue was so often repeated that it eventually entered the lexicon. Think of 'You're terrible Muriel' and 'Tell him he's dreaming' and 'There’s a smell in here that will outlast religion'. Even 'How’s the serenity?' has now entered the real estate ads.

I am a lover of Australian movies and I thought I'd seen them all, but thanks to David I've now also discovered "Force of Destiny", "Man of Flowers", "Innocence", "The Home Song Stories, "Lonely Hearts", and a host of others, some of which I won't bother to track down on ebay as they're a bit too violent for my taste.

Thanks, David, for adding to my collection of Australian movies.



Happy Birthday, Chris!

Disc 2   Disc 3


This is probably the best-ever talking-book version of Kenneth Grahame's masterpiece. So on this special day of yours, close your eyes and be transported back to your favourite place. Here's the theme song to get you into the mood:


The wind in the willows sang softly to me
Follow my voice wherever it leads
From mountains, through valleys, to deep rolling seas
Born on the wings of the breeze
Spin me a dream woven silver and gold
From sunshine and shadows and days long ago
Where people are memories and stories unfold
Willows the tales you have told me
Wind in the willows you'll just seem to know
Who you can turn to and which way to go
To unwind your wonderous mind
Wind in the willows take me there
Wind in the willows you'll just seem to know
Who you can turn to and which way to go
Where people are memories and stories unfold
Wind in the willows take me there
Wind in the willows take me there


For once give the ironing a miss, Chris. Do nothing and just relax!



Have a very Happy Birthday, Chris, and thank you for your friendship!
I shall raise a glass of something appropriate at the appropriate time.


Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The unadulterated, unexpurgated, uncensored D J Hudson movie


I've checked his knees and, no, Becker (Eric Roberts) is not an American look-alike of D J Hudson who's still trying to "cultivate" - quite unsuccessfully, I might add - an American accent with the help of countless cans of Coca-Cola.

As they say: you can take the boy out of Sunshine, but you can't take the Sunshine out of the boy!