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Tuesday, March 24, 2009

FRANKLAND: “Frankly, this Jingilli Devine cold pressed extra virgin olive oil may have fallen from heaven, it’s so nice!” Payton L. Inkletter enthused

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:

In other news…

24th to 25th March 2009:

Tuesday: I cut it very fine, but I needed the shuteye so badly it just had to be; mid morning when the alabaster dragon arose, I postponed my wake me up request from eleven till twelve, and then when I went about trying to rejoin the land of the awake, I forgot that I had to have Missus InklesIseedoctors – morethantheirownwivesdo at her doctor’s appointment by one, instead of the half one I was running on. About twenty to one she enquired how I was going, and then I got the shock that I had half an hour less than I thought. So a number of things I planned to do were rapidly shelved, including the denudation of a twenty four hour shadow.

We drove around to Pa pree’s and picked him up, but he was a couple of hundred metres on his way already, then Janny was delivered to her quack’s on time. It took a while, and I read in the car. When they returned, Janny had a referral for a nerve sheath root injection for her L3 vertebra area. Then it was in to the shopping centre, where the delinquents shopped till they dropped. I read in the car for a while, before venturing in myself and shopped in four places; I hasten to add, I’d give the job to others if it were that simple. I got two litres, on sposhull, of a local cold pressed extra virgin olive oil, Jingilli Devine by Frankland River Olive Company Ltd, and I plan to take maybe as little as a teaspoon a day, to try again what I began years ago doing for up to a year, after listening to Mel Gibson recommend it, on Letterman, for reducing blood cholesterol levels. I don’t recall the quantity he recommended, but I’m likely to go with but a teaspoon, due to the cost of it. I particularly wanted to choose Australian, and Western Australian if possible, but I could find but the one brand in Coles and Woolies from my home state.

Talk about live writing! I just got up from the keyboard, went out to the kitchen, studied the instructions under the carton, and set up the little tap at the base of the box – it’s like a wine cask – then carefully poured a teaspoon and straight down the hatch it went; it was delicious, with a slight afterburn, but I’m tough, and that’s how I take most things of a medicinal nature. For example, my cocoa imbibing method is the stuff of legend, and it is often recounted at The Campbell Barracks, when the commanders of the Special Air Services regiment need to inspire the boys with courage above the usual extremely high level they exhibit normally. So, if I enjoy a very long life and annoy a lot more people, Jingilli Devine might be to blame.

From here I drove the little people to the local Dewsons’, where they continued their orgy of quantitative easing, before we finally got home just after five in the late afternoon. Another precious several hours gone west…

I emptied the car, checked email, and crashed for an hour in bed, but slept for only the latter half of it, before the frilly nickered lizard woke me for My Beloved. So Barack Obama and his team have just given cause for the Stock Market to make its fifth biggest jump ever? Is that what I heard, or something like it? Toxic debt, and let’s hope these stupendous rescue packages aren’t all not a toxic bet.

Murmerings of making bikie gangs illegal in Australia: despite the protestations from some in the legal and civil rights fraternities, this could have been done years ago, as it still could be now. I believe in making ‘special’ laws if need be, with clarification of why they are special attached to them, for these very difficult cases. In other words, make it plain with the law just created that it is an imperfect temporary answer to a convoluted situation, and not to be taken as an example or precedent to extend to all other areas. Our state police some years ago did a most foolish and gutless thing when they allowed a local chapter of some group of bikie thugs to escort a coffin to Karrakatta Cemetery without their helmets on. Little wonder they become a law unto themselves when they are pussyfooted to by our law ‘enforcers’. And how amazing that there is always some lawyer prepared to defend the indefensible on the behalf of some bikie or group brought before the courts. Not to suggest that every charge is legitimate, but a hell of a lot of them are quickly ascertainable to be completely sound by the average reasonable citizen, yet high powered highly paid stoop-to-anything lawyers manage to get them out of some of the most incredible trouble.

Kerry O’Brien’s The 7.30 Report had a disturbing story by Sharon O'Neill about the death of Belinda Griffey in Nepean Hospital, which never admitted negligence, but did concede a breach in its duty of care; I wouldn’t mind that nuance clarified to me. What the report didn’t tell us, which medically is interesting, is what caused Belinda’s sodium levels to drop in the first place? One wonders how many Australian folk are dying due to mistakes in our dysfunctional hospital system?

I particularly enjoy it when Kerry does a non-political interview, and I think he does also. Tonight he aired his chat with the Williamsons, and I thought it a rare moment of potential humorous table turning on Kerry when David asked ‘Was Kerry on the list?’ in regard to a real list of potential men Kristen might bear to sleep with (she admits to working her way through two on her list of five).

Having wrested control of the remote from Pa pree earlier, I was able to switch over to the latter portion of Jenny Brockie and her superb Insight program, which tonight was on obesity, titled ‘A Gutful’. Has anyone else noticed how much Professor Boyd Swinburne of Deakin University resembles a Galapagos turtle? That aside – and I think they are gorgeous things by the way, and wouldn’t hurt an ant, unless they stepped on one – Professor Swinburne was spot on with his charge of conflict of interest against the Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Food and Grocery Council, Kate Carnell; more’s the pity she squirmed her way out of actually admitting it – rather she denied it. Such behaviour drops the respect quotient one could otherwise enjoy; I would admire her somewhat if she would be big enough to admit the conflict, but insist she continue in the conflicting position and committing to be all the more vigilant. Not ideal, but at least honest.

I departed, and left the little people to watch one of their favourites, ‘Packed to the Rafters’, while I tapped away on the keyboard. I recorded Foreign Correspondent so as not to stop the delinquents from seeing the end of Rafters (who remembers the days when commercial television had time fidelity?) – but this reminds me to comment on last week’s program, which I watched some days later for the same reason. How awful to see that brute and very small human being Robert Mugabe wax fat while the latest scourge to wallop his subjects is cholera. Full marks to reporter Andrew Geoghegan and his team for taking the risk to go undercover as tourists to bring us this expose. And wasn’t Dambisa Moyo’s condemnation of the deleterious effects of decades of aid to African nations compelling? Philip WilliamsLondon interview with her was an eye-opener; her observation that the political elite’s Swiss bank accounts are definitely some of the major beneficiaries rings awfully true. I hope her book ‘Dead Aid’ is well read and critiqued, and if there’s merit in her arguments for the time limiting of aid – and I strongly suspect there is – then we may be able to see the reduction of the ‘self perpetuating aid industry’ and ‘glamour aid’.

Packed to the Rafters’ had finished, so I drove Pa pree and his container load of shopping back to his place. On my return I did a bit more at the computer, this diary specifically, before dashing back to watch Lateline, and part two of the Suzanne Smith story on Foetal Alcohol Syndrome. How sad is the story of Elizabeth Russell and her son Seth born with FAS. There are so many factors able to remove potential from the unborn baby that we can do little about, but here’s one that has a simple cure in theory, while difficult in practice, given the entrenchment of drinking from, and before, the age of adulthood, right when our young women are at the beginning of their fertility. The tricky part, even if every pregnant woman willingly left alcohol alone once aware that she was pregnant, is that initial period when she doesn’t know, and especially if she wasn’t trying to get pregnant. How horrifying a statistic is the one from Halls Creek, with 21 times the Western Australian average for FAS!

The following interview with a gracious Professor Sterling Clarren, the CEO and Scientific Director of the Canada Northwest Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Research Network, was frightening, for he gave Tony Jones the facts of the damage that alcohol can do to the foetus once it has made a placental connection to the mother’s blood stream. Who knows how many children are born with even only mild symptoms that will limit them for the rest of their lives? Pun intended, it was a sobering interview. We truly are our brother’s keeper to some extent, and our behaviour and choices always have some effect beyond our own inner world. Every one of us born without any FAS effects are in at least a small way obliged to live in such a way that it lowers the likelihood of others being born with it. In short, responsible drinking, if we drink at all, and a heightened awareness of the sensitivities of the developing foetus.

I watched Lateline Business as well as Letterman. I went for my late walk. I got to bed on towards dawn.


25th March 2009:

Wednesday: The major part of this day that I will long remember had to do with a development flowing from a visit to my mother:

Janny and I drove to pick up Mum from sister Mary’s in East Victoria Park, and due to some health problems of mine we were towards an hour later than planned, but Mum was understanding. We went to find a local park to have a sandwich lunch, and in the process drove through the back woods of Wilson and surrounding areas, quiet streets we’d never seen before. As Murphy’s Brother’s Law would have it, the park we chose to sit under some beautiful peppermint trees had just nearby a deep sewerage infill project in full swing, which, while it did not entail smell, it did entail noise. Nevertheless, the time was actually very nice in that park, devouring Janny’s delicious sandwiches, of which she did not avail herself due to Byetta restrictions.

I then took the ladies to Textile Traders in Cannington, which proved to be a bit of a dry hunt, so the items Missus Inklematerialgirl wanted will have to wait for another safari. For some reason the idea suddenly occurred to me, on this lovely mild sunny late March day to visit our old home in South Perth, for it is decades since I went past it, and I could not remember what it looked like. So we drove there, not too far away, going through Bentley’s Silicon City where Hee Peggy must work, to get there.

And once there, I was surprised it is on a corner – so much for anything I remember, and the house next door is now a vacant block. We began taking some photos of Mum and me, and Janny and me, and Payton the Koala Bear, with the old house in the background, when the occupant of the house came out and pretended to check the mail. I let him know I was born while Mum and Dad lived here five hundred years ago, over fifty one to be more precise, and lo and behold, after asking an identifying question about my brother, who apparently did just this kind of thing in relatively recent times, he asked “Do you want to take a look around inside?” I couldn’t believe it, and played down the idea not wanting to put him, John, out, but then took him up given the genuine friendliness of his offer.

It was the first time my mother had been inside the house since December 1959 or January 1960. I was but two and a half when we left there, so I have no recollections of the inside at all. Much of the interior is the same, and Mum remembered it. Some renovations have altered the kitchen area, and another room or two. John has been there for about 15 years, and his research found that it was built in 1928. He gave us over half an hour, and it was most kind of him. He is a Western Australian born and bred man, a little older than me perhaps, with his family hailing from the Katanning area.

After this most unexpected bonus, we took leave of the new custodian of our old home, and I took the ladies to the shopping centre in East Victoria Park where we helped Mum do a ‘big shop bin come up’ in Coles. By the time we got back to sister Mary’s, she was home, and we spent a nice time catching up, and not long before we left for our home, after seven, Michele arrived home from work, and we had a pleasant, if brief, catch up with him. Maximus Coccioli was beside himself to see his master. Elizabeth is in Vietnam, taking a party on a tour. And not long back from the Grand Canyon at that.

We arrived home tired, and settled in for the big night on Aunty TV. The comedies, The New Inventors, The Gruen Transfer, and the premiere of ‘Lawrence Leung's Choose Your Own Adventure’, which I’m happy to say I found funny, and will try to catch them all. I even saw Margaret Pomeranz and David Stratton on ‘At the Movies’ giving us their ten cents’ worth on the latest films. They each spoke well of and marked well the Nicholas CageKnowing’, yet the Babies Ink&Peggletter, who saw a special showing of it courtesy of tickets from Pa pree, said it wasn’t very good.

Of course I saw Lateline and Lateline Business, as well as Letterman. I did not go for my usual late walk tonight, as I was far too exhausted. I was not feeling exactly too well, with a vein quite prominent on my right forehead, signalling perhaps that pressures were high internally. I got to bed early, about two o’clock.


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