A ‘supercell’ thunderstorm which hit Canberra, Australia last night with devastating results was caused by a small boy, Gary Thomerson, The storm which led to almost 200 call-outs by the State Emergency Service and numerous police road closures was the worst of its kind for 12 years.
Gary, 6, ate a small piece of cake belong to his half-sister, Melissa, 8, which she had been saving in the fridge after her attendance at a North Canberra birthday party. The slice was cut from a cake that had been made into the shape of a green tree frog – a favourite animal of birthday girl Sharon, 9. While the layer of icing was green, the interior of the cake was banana chocolate.
When confronted about the cake, Gary repeatedly denied being responsible for its disappearance. When Melissa asked him to ‘swear to God’ that he hadn’t taken the cake, he said: ‘I swear to God I didn’t take your freakin’ cake.’ A witness has now come forward to suggest that Gary’s fingers were crossed at the time this statement was made but it is the view of Father Luke Domenico of the St Stephen Theological College in Auckland, New Zealand that this is unlikely to ‘cut any ice with the Almighty.’
Exactly seven hours after Gary’s oath, the storm, including hailstones the size of chocolate freckles, struck Canberra with terrible ferocity. Gary is alleged at this point to have hid under his bed whimpering ‘like a little bitch’ in the words of his older brother Stephen, 13.
God later killed Gary’s hamster, Harry Potter, 14 months, and cancelled both his soccer game next Saturday morning and his much anticipated trip to Movieworld on the Gold Coast.
‘Did I learn anything from this?’ Gary asked this journalist, rhetorically one suspects. ‘You bet I did. You bet I did.’ He said. He then added ‘God is a big fat poohead.’
Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Saturday, February 24, 2007
Maiden speech, Roger Plimson-Clark MP, new Member for Crackalacka, SA.
Mr Speaker, it is with a trembling sense of occasion that I rise to first address this august chamber but any pleasure thereof must be second to the awesome responsibility which sits upon my shoulders like a giant desert-dwelling carrion bird.
Mr Speaker, there is a danger which stalks our land. A danger responsible for more grief and more tears than almost any I care to name and yet, due to the vile back-room machinations of entrenched interest groups, this danger has rarely if ever glared out from the front pages of our daily newspapers, let alone been properly debated in this mighty hall of our democracy.
Let me pose a thought experiment for you, Mr Speaker. Imagine yourself as a father – and indeed this is not difficult for you because I know you are a very good father – imagine you are pacing anxiously outside the theatre waiting for your youngest and dearest to be operated upon when a nurse introduces you to the “surgeon”. This is Kevin – she says – 10 minutes ago he was laying bricks and now we’re slapping a scalpel in his hand and allowing him to practice medicine. Well, such a thing is unthinkable.
And yet this very scenario, in a slightly different field of human endeavour, is played out every day in the towns, cities and villages of our nation.
It may surprise and shock you, Mr Speaker – as it did me – to learn that any Tom, Dick or Harriet may, without any formal training, any relevant experience, any Government licensing system, call themselves a hairdresser and begin cutting the hair of ordinary decent Australians, including I must emphasise, children.
Let me just give you a moment to let that sink in, Mr Speaker. No training, no experience, no licence, and they may then proceed to lawfully separate people from their hair in back-alley salons in some of the seedier quarters of our cities.
I was first alerted to this by a constituent, a delightful lass with her whole future ahead of her. This young lady attended a beauty spa that I will not name in order to receive a “colour, cut and style” so as to increase her chances at an up-coming job interview as well as to impress a gentleman friend that very night. I will not go into details except to say that this constituent could not relate this tale to me without her voice catching with emotion. Suffice to say, she did not get the job, is no longer seeing her man-friend and has resigned herself to wearing a variety of hats for the next two months.
Horrible as her story is, my own personal research endeavours have revealed that this tale of woe is all too common. I myself have received haircuts that were advertised as a “quick trim” but which left me psychologically scarred with my self-esteem in tatters.
Mr Speaker, the time for action is now. We cannot wait for a Royal Commission or similar fact finding body to establish what we already know.
Accordingly, I announce my intention to introduce a Private Member’s Bill at the earliest opportunity. This legislation, which I urge all members to support regardless of which side of the aisle they find themselves on, will insert new provisions into the Criminal Code making it an offence to set up as a hairdresser or an allied profession without a four-year university degree. Similarly, the sale of hairdressing implements such as scissors, clippers and water squirters will be subject to a strict code of conduct with a requirement that retailers report suspect transactions to a new body, the Australian Hair and Beauty Standards Commission.
Furthermore, new avenues of complaint for disgruntled customers will be created. If you show a hair-dresser (or ‘thatch butcher’ as I call them) a picture of Johnny Depp or Jennifer Anniston, you have every right to walk out of that salon looking like Mr Depp or Ms Annistion.
I see that my time is almost at an end, Mr Speaker. I am quite sure that this is not the last time I will speak on this important subject. I urge all other members to educate themselves about this looming threat and to support my forthcoming Bill. We must not allow these tress-fiends to cut-and-run. For the sake of the young growing follicles of this great country, we must act before it is too late.
at 10:33 pm
Monday, February 19, 2007
(9) No, really, you don’t talk about FIGHT CLUB
(10) If you don’t possesses a vague, burning, masculine self-loathing combined with a deep sense of alienation and an almost comical love of consumer products then TAKE IT OUTSIDE, BUDDY.
(11) You DO NOT talk about FIGHT CLUB even if you’re using some kind of sophisticated code that most people couldn’t understand in a million years. Don’t even ALLUDE to FIGHT CLUB in passing.
(12) No shrieking like a girl – unless you are a girl.
(13) No girls.
(14) You DO NOT build websites about FIGHT CLUB no matter how many hits you think you’ll get.
(15) No shirts, no shoes, no jockey briefs. Please.
(16) You do not blog about FIGHT CLUB.
(17) Homosexuality is to remain latent at all times in FIGHT CLUB no matter how hot his or your pecs look as they sweatily reflect the flickering torchlight.
(18) You do NOT blog about FIGHT CLUB but web chat might be OK. Depends.
(19) It’s not my first time, so I’m just going to lean against this brick wall and smoke gauloises, OK?
(20) You DO NOT blog about FIGHT CLUB unless it’s on the official MSNBC FIGHT CLUB group blog and you have sufficient ‘mayhem’ points and a moderator (who must have at least 1000 mayhem points) approves your posts until you hit 250 mayhem points. (You can also vlog about FIGHT CLUB on youtube when you get to 500).
at 9:42 pm
Friday, February 16, 2007
I've just started training to tutor refugees in English. It has been impressed upon us how difficult this can be and we've been encouraged to introduce English to them in a context they can readily understand...
So I made this:
Jeez, political, huh? I may as well have just come out and said John Howard is a jerk...
at 10:07 pm
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
Killer bee fans!
Well 2006 was a fantastic year as we all anticipated! After a slow, let’s face it, decade, Hollywood finally came to the party and gave us the best year since the magical year of 1978.
In no particular order:
A swarm of killer bees, disturbed by an industrial explosion, is heading from South America to Texas. Chuck Rangell (William Baldwin), an unemployed fruiterer from Houston, is seeking a reconciliation with his wife after their marriage broke up due to his obsession with finding with the world’s most succulent tomato. They get back together after a small boy shows him the value of human relationships. Then the bees kill everybody. An instant classic! Check out the scene where killer bees sting Rangell’s eyes…
Hive! Hive! Hive!
A swarm of killer bees, disturbed by a gas explosion, is heading from South America to Texas. Chip Unger (Daniel Baldwin), a down-on-his-luck petroleum geologist from Austin, is trying to regain the love of his estranged daughter while looking for the legendary El Greco oil well. He finds it, they reunite! Then the bees kill everybody. Only so-so, I’m afraid, but catch the scene where a killer bee emerges from Unger’s urethra…
Death Wears Black and Yellow Stripes
A swarm of killer bees, disturbed by an explosion in a desiccated coconut factory, is heading from South America to Texas. Sammy Wallis (Michelle Baldwin), a depressed factory worker from Waco, leads a brave effort to unionise the down-trodden Latina garment workers who she initially despised because of their fondness for enchiladas, in the face of incredible management harassment. The factory is unionized, the cafeteria serves enchiladas and hotdogs and Wallis is promoted to CEO. Then the bees kill everybody. Watchable, particularly for those of you like me with an interest in workplace relations, but most notable for the scene where the bees shave Wallis’ scalp before entering her brain through the eye sockets.
To Bee Or Not To Bee
A swarm of killer bees, disturbed by a loud block party, is heading from South America to Texas. Solomon Herschel (Moshe Baldwin), is a drunken Shakespearean actor and rabbi who lost his faith when a bar mitzvah he was presiding over was attacked by large fish. He regains his trust in YHWH after a small girl shows him the value of somewhat arbitrary and capricious middle-Eastern deities who will tolerate no other gods before Him. Then the bees kill everybody. Fantastic! Especially the slow-moving montage where Herschel is pollinated in the anus while a troupe of Polish ballerinas is stung to death on a bus.
So I Married A Killer Bee
A swarm of killer bees, disturbed by a malfunctioning clock radio, is heading from South America to Texas. Jenny McCain (Apple Baldwin-Paltrow) is an unhappy four-year old struggling with the pressures of a multi-racial inner urban kindergarten. After breaking up a knife fight and mastering finger painting, she puts on the best puppet show K-12 education has ever seen. Then the bees kill everybody. Not to be missed but if you’re easily bored, fast forward to the 86th minute when a queen bee, dressed as Mary Queen of Scots, lifts little McCain up by her coccyx before slamming her back to earth. Touchdown!
Stop!...Or You’ll Harsh My Buzz!
A swarm of killer bees, disturbed by a farting Mexican, is heading from South America to Texas. Xxxl Y’rrt (Ezekiel Kvango Baldwin-Presley), a miserable alien trapped on earth for some reason which is never entirely explained, is picked up by a bus-load of hippies who think it’s 1969! After a bad acid trip, Y’rrt tears out their spinal columns and uses them to make a scale model of the HMS Bounty. Hilarity ensues! A rare genre-bender which bodes well for the future of killer bee films. Don’t forget the scene where Y’rrt goes up against several worker drones in a marathon dancing competition – he finally beats them by artificially synthesizing their queen’s chemical signature and beating them to death with their own mandibles. Then everybody kills him. If you’re even half-way serious about killer bee films, you’ll rush out right now and buy it on DVD, VHS and mini-disc.
at 11:00 pm
Friday, February 09, 2007
- I resent your remarks about my paw-paw and arugula pesto!
- The reduction method used by your sous-chef to produce this veal consommé is patently inferior and allows inferences to be drawn about the overall management of this kitchen.
- Call this cotoletta alla milanese? Call it by its true name -- weiner schnitzel!
- Your reliance upon garlic is telling.
- Your fusion of Asian and Southern European flavours was ultimately unsuccessful and undeserving of even the epithet ‘interesting’.
- Were you trained in England?
- You sauté like a faggot.
at 7:20 pm
Saturday, February 03, 2007
Hard-boiled crime fiction similes that might have been used by a trainspotting-enthused crime fiction novelist
Hillier grabbed her and kissed her, long and hard, like the press of carriage wheels on a cold iron track. Then, as the night fell, they coupled furiously – fierce, clanging and smoothly efficient.
He screamed as the bullet struck his thigh, a loud roar like the sudden release of steam from a disused shunt neck clack valve.
She had legs that didn’t quit like pistons on 279-T.
A shot rang out, a sharp crack like the sound of wrench being dropped down the anterior funnel of Pullman Firebird locomotive.
He drove his fist into McNab’s solar-plexus which was soft and yielding, like the velour cushion on the top bunk of a first class sleeping car on the Canadian-Pacific.
She walked in as if she owned the joint, like a nineteenth century rail baron paying a surprise inspection visit to a little-used southern Illinois freight-yard.
‘You’re finished, McTeague, washed-up, like the NER Uniflow Locomotive No 825 of 1913 when the NER Uniflow Locomotive No 2212 of 1919 came along.’
Bonus extra: a hard-boiled crime fiction simile that might be used by a female crime fiction novelist who is married to a trainspotting-enthused crime fiction novelist:
She trained his gun on him, taking careful pleasure in the sudden reversal of roles. "You're like a train,' she observed acidly, "a big fat dumb stinky stupid train, full of fat dumb idiots with serious hygiene and inter-personal communication issues." As she tightened her slender finger around the ring-like trigger guard, how she laughed, oh how she laughed.
at 10:48 am