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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

INNALOO: Never send to know for whom the poo smells; it smells for thee, a philosophical Payton L. Inkletter concludes his ponderings upon the throne.

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:

In other news…

28th April 2009:

Tuesday: Another lovely mild yet warm day from Paradise; more’s the pity I slept through most of it. I surfaced finally, after the usual tinkle breaks, at half four when the blasted mobble rang. It was my darling daughter, so that was the only good thing about the disturbance. Missus Inklegreatdaughterherself took her father, Pa pree, shopping and on an Op Shop crawl a bit before half one. I returned to the cot and tried to do mind exercises while resting more, until the terrifying sound of the Swift pulling up out the front signalled the end of my blessed solitude. Two ugly possibilities entered my stressed mind: if alone, the rapacious reptile might demand her dues of me; if not alone, I would be in the company of the little people

It was the latter! I was in the company of the little people, a fate sometimes worse than a drive across the Nullabor in a Volkswagon Beetle with seriously inbred Tasmanians. Janny got changed and updated me in the boudoir of the day’s kills: a number of very nice clothing items for her from said Op Shops, and some she would do some alterations upon, using her dressmaking talents. I lingered in the cot after she left to make refreshments for the pair of them, and finally emerged after half five to face the day. About a maximum of one hour’s faint light left, and I ended up spending half of it attending to emails and a very thoughtful and detailed comment from Gladys Hobson regarding the sufferings from war and more burdening so many of our fellows, posted to my ‘Gallipoli’ posting at ‘In other news…’.

One ‘small’ job I did attend to before My Beloved was the fitting of one of the two new car seat covers which Pa pree had bought for the Swift a couple of weeks back. I think the job should be a punishment for white collar criminals; it’s so hard to thread the ribbons and tie them up under a tiny pokey seat in a tiny pokey car. So my hopes to do both evaporated, and the passenger seat I did get done I know I didn’t tie up correctly. Hopefully it’ll stay on with some degree of decency, or else a Tarago will blush seeing the Swift undressing.

We had our vittles watching My Beloved, with more details about the very concerning Swine Flu outbreak. How fortunate I and my family are to be in a wealthy country so relatively well prepared for such things. And Richard Pratt died today: there is yet another excellent example of the human condition: a man with some typical flaws, evidenced by his mistress Shari-Lea Hitchcock and love child Paula, and his price fixing shenanigans in business, mixed with his inspiring philanthropy.

I stayed on to see Kerry O’Brien host ‘The 7.30 Report’. I was pleased by the progress being made by Djarragun College, Gordonvale, in Peter McCutcheon’s report; a mere 31 years ago I visited Gordonvale south of Cairns, when I was still an idealistic starry eyed youth, before meeting and marrying the bodacious bungarra who beat it all out me. And what a good role model Noel Pearson is, not only here as school patron, but in many places and ways elsewhere. Also Kerry did an interview with Chris Richardson from Access Economics, whose tie was about the shade of that thing on Kerry’s head, and it was a good and pleasant interview, for Kerry doesn’t have to summons any of his inner mongrel to the fore like he has to with many a politician, to try to extract crucial information. How true the point of agreement between Chris and Kezza that both sides of politics will pretend that certain budgetary constraints won’t exist until after the next election, such as much middle class welfare.

I retreated to the back room at this juncture, that is, the end of Mistah O’Brien’s half hour, to leave the delinquents to watch whatever fairy floss they would prefer to watch, and put on the huge (for us) telly that Baby Peggletter gave us, and watched Foreign Correspondent. Mark Corcoran announced the program in the plural again, but a twinge of guilt pierced my mind body and soul as the thought occurred to me that perhaps he has a slight speech impediment, and the complaining I’ve been doing in this diary for ages about his apparent inability to know the precise name of his program would thus reflect upon me as the callous bastard I obviously am, or so certain close family members will vouch for. Gulp! Hey Mark, if this is the case, forgive me please. I could go back and edit out the entries where I highlight this pronunciation glitch of yours, but I won’t. I will just throw myself at your feet and beg for compassion and forgiveness. If you don’t have a slight speech impediment, practice how to say your program’s precise name ya lazy bastard!

Anyway, tonight’s program by Andrew Fowler, ‘Pirateland’ was good to see for an exposition of the other side of the ledger; every story has two sides, and while I don’t condone the piracy in any way, I understand more the pressures of poverty that contribute mightily to the folk, many former fishermen, turning to piracy. So once again, thank you Foreign Correspondent for informing me so well on things.

I wrote at the poota and posted the already written text from days ago for the ‘Gallipoli’ entry to this blog, as well as a reply comment to Gladys Hobson’s comment, before watching ‘Lead Balloon’ in comfort on the Player recliner in the lounge, Missus Inkleshe’sabonzagirl having driven Pa pree home some time earlier, saving me the task. Janny doesn’t find the show worth watching; I do. After this half hour of comic relief I dashed back to the poota briefly, then put the insolent iguana to bed, for she was very tired, having not slept well last night, and then I actually sliced up 3 Fuji apples and shaved cheddar cheese for myself, even made a moccers coffee for myself, in preparation for SilverToes and his Lateline. The highlight for me was the studio interview with Senator Nick Sherry, Minister for Superannuation and Corporate Law, discussing the review being conducted into superannuation policy. I’ve said it before and I say it again, I have a lot of admiration for Nick Sherry. He is serious, considered, and constrained, but then I think I understand why. Now wasn’t that a powerful point he made about fees! “But these operational issues and the costs and the fees are critical to the way the system delivers. Because as I've said, one or two per cent off into fees, effectively reduces your long-term savings by about a quarter, by about a quarter.” Yes, the cream skimmers, whose onus it is to justify their value, can make that much of a massive difference to the maturation funds for a worker! And bless Nick, Otto von Bismarck even got a mention!

The lovely Ali Moore perked me up as she always does, and her interview with National Australia Bastard, er Bank’s CEO Cameron Clyne had her use the term ‘rude health’. I was rather piqued in the stimulative sense of the word, and very glad Ali chose to present that view of his company’s books to the wank…er… banker. Forgive me all who find my crudeness here confronting, but bankers have long lost the respect of the common man in the land down under. Ali would have been within her fair rights to have doused Cameron with a glass of water at the end of the interview if she so chose, but of course that gal has no inner mongrel, just inner kitten, two weeks old, and who was ever hurt, or even offended, by a two week old kitten?

Letterman was his usual funny self, and I enjoyed his second guest, the late life realized ‘pussy basher’ (to quote Stephen Fry speaking to Cher on Parkinson about her daughter) Carol Leifer, who was refreshingly funny and intelligent. She was promoting her new book ‘When You Lie About Your Age The Terrorists Win’, which I suspect would be a witty read. And I found the finishing act, The All-American Rejects, were talented and impressive entertainment. From this television fest I retreated again to the computer back room, and kept writing this diary in fact, while listening a bit to Barack Obama’s podcasts from Radio National of his audio book, ‘Dreams from my Father’; there’s one talented President. His voice is easy to listen to, and the fact that he wrote the book is quite something.

Another still night, not a breath of breeze, cool, what an April we’ve just had! I dealt with a health problem, then embarked on a walk, after two, on this beautiful night. And blow me down, if fifteen minutes into my locomotion I didn’t pass another fellow, older than me, walking in the opposite direction. It’s very late, remember, and I never encounter wrinklies like myself; I do encounter young folk now and then, often drunk – them that is. As I passed this fellow, I realized I know him, old Barry the former pamphleteer from over fifteen years ago, although I’ve waved to him from cars a few times since. I wondered if he recalled me, but I wouldn’t be surprised if not, due his reluctance to engage, even eye contact, in the dangerous circumstances of a dark and lonely stretch of pavement with no one around.

In the Dewsons’ vicinity a pair of police in an unmarked car pulled up and questioned me, and got all my details up on their whiz bang dashboard poota, and we had a friendly chat. “Payton Inkletter”; “Do you have a middle name?”; “Yes.” “It’s very late.”; “I have trouble sleeping. Nice and cool in summer for a walk.”; “You seen any cars here?”; “No, I’ve only been here a few minutes though”; “Blah blah blah.” Later I returned home by a back street route through a tiny park and up a quiet cul de sac loop, and who should I encounter again but old Barry the former pamphleteer, in a particularly dark section of the neighbourhood, presumably returning from his nocturnal wanderings, and again he didn’t look my way, out of fear I’m sure, and he wasn’t aware I was the same good looking fellow he passed half an hour ago in a different neck of the woods. When I realized it was he, I simply called out, quietly, “Hello again!” I’m sure the sleeping folk all around had no idea about this meeting of arthritic marsupials on the tarmac bordering their homes.

I returned to the keyboard on my eventual return, and while preparing to upload the text of another posting I’d already uploaded the headline for the other day, because it had me discussing our Optus internet plan details in it, I decided to go to my account page and try to check a particular detail. In the process I mistakenly upgraded our plan to the next higher one, costing another forty bucks, effective almost immediately, despite the 24 hour suggested waiting period. So I got straight onto the phone to try to reverse my mistake, even though it was almost half four in the morning, and got through to one ‘Basand’, a wog if ever there was one: a very nice wog though, and I commended him for his professionalism in a later email I wrote and sent to Optus. (Long term followers of Fool’s Paradise’ sites are not surprised by the political incorrectness to be encountered here and there in my writings, as there is even a warning at the top of this site and the Main page regarding this, as well as an exploration of the subject on the Main page, toward the bottom. And hey, some of my best friends are wogs.)

It took the fine young wog towards twenty minutes, but he was able to report that yes, he’d got it reversed, and we were back to the current 15 Gb monthly data plan. [Back from the future update: about twenty hours later (1 a.m. Thursday 29th April) my usage chart in my accounts page still shows me on the new 30 Gb plan, which calls into question even more the honesty of the Optus crew dealing with me this morning. If Basand was able to have our plan back to the previous one within 20 minutes, why hasn’t the reduced limit back to 15 Gb been reinstated on my usage page?] Naturally I was happy. Almost casually in the ensuing conversation he mentioned that the difference of $40 would be on my next account. I took a breath and explained that the whole reason I immediately contacted Optus to try to reverse the upgrade, which he just had, was to avoid the extra charge. He acknowledged this, and it transpired that his supervisor had ‘already’ okayed a $20 credit on my next account, meaning that it would only cost me $20 extra. My protest that I would not have any extra high speed data allowance, as he had just cancelled that, only elicited the information that ‘it was 60% likely that I would not be charged the extra $40’. I don’t know about you dear readers, but this all stinks of big business pushing its customers around, playing funny buggers. Basand is just the poor dupe employee doing his bosses’s bidding, I’m sure, and I silently didn’t buy the excuse implied that the order that had gone through was irreversible. Curious that the increased data limit could be reversed immediately! And if old supervisor face could okay a $20 credit, he/she could okay a $40 credit also, in my humble opinion. However, I kept these thoughts to myself, not wishing to hassle the poor wog pawn forced to bully customers like me. I thanked him for his efforts, genuinely, for he was a most pleasant and polite fellow.

So I found the complaints section on the Optus site, and composed a letter and sent it, asking for a complete cancelling of the fee, especially in light of the fact that I won’t be using any of the data costed into the price of the upgrade. Rest assured my billions of faithful daily readers, I will keep you informed of the result, if you don’t fall off the perch from the tension in the meantime. Anyway, for now let’s just agree that these large telcos are bastards. I could share several more of these bullying tactics we and our friends have experienced at their hands over the last twenty and more years.

I saw the dawn light filter through the bamboo leaves out the back window here, as I wrote on the issue, let me label it ‘patriotism’ for the sake of brevity, that The Babies differed with me at the meal we shared the other night with the Chocsons. I had given it much thought on my walk earlier, not taking my talking book so that I could think upon it. During the morning, which unfolded quickly, I had the frustrating experience of several more phone calls to Optus



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