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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

NEUSTADT AN DER WEINSTRAßE: Click click click!; Aunty Marion’s Chernobylysed Norwegian cloud berry jam sure did glow in the dark: who needs a counter?

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:

In other news…

30th September 2009:

Wednesday: No, I had no sleep, to speak of, just bits between the waking stretches, while listening to my last insomniacal resort favourite talking book. I got up before the alabaster dragon left for her spinning group meet at Menora, confusingly called the Dianella Spinning Group or some such much the same.

I forced myself up before nine because I wanted to get the front grass (deliberate choice – equally valid alternative: weeds) mown before cleaning up the kitchen and taking Bob swimming. I even managed to do a dual posting of yesterday’s entry. The sand was still slightly damp, which was helpful, for the electric mower picked up less sand than otherwise, but it would have been better to do it yesterday between showers, for then the sand would have been wet, and that means even less sand sucked up.

All this meant I was running seriously late, and while I was cleaning up the kitchen last thing, I began to be on the receiving end of the testy termagant’s complaints – she was back now from her ‘cacophocryphal’ yarn spinning – to the effect that I’d be back late for delivering vittles to The Dear Leader. This wasn’t helpful, for she quickly forgets that both he and she have reiterated in the past that 7 p.m. is not set in stone, and 8 p.m. is alright when circumstances nudge the timings late. Neither did it help when her iteration of the complaint came when I was nearly ready to go, for she left it hanging in the air, as she is wont to do, leaving it open for me to explain the options her remark beckoned: don’t go; go but cut it short; go and put in the usual hours and be an hour later than usual back – and of course after unwelcomingly hearing my analysis she made out that nothing mattered now; curious, for it mattered enough twice in the last hour to bring it up. So the household vibes lowered at my leaving time. How many husbands find themselves in situations analogous to this?: ‘The sun is higher than helpful!’…; ‘Would you like me to lower it?’’; silence…

Bob was glad I came, late though it was (3.30 p.m.), and so were his social trainers, who I had phoned in advance asking if late was still okay. Swan Aquatic was quiet, and this meant Bob got more duck diving done during his walking laps. He was momentarily nonplussed when I broke the news at leaving time from the pool that we couldn’t go to the river a Guildford to walk and have a hot drink, for I had resolved while he was swimming to get back by 7 p.m. to try to fit in with the commode dragon’s earlier wishes. But to his credit, and as almost always with Bob, he was over the disappointment in a flash, and was talking about our next outing.

When I got home, minutes after 7, through the door what should I hear but the poor powderpuff vomiting into the bathroom basin; I put pressure onto her lower back till it was over; she thinks the flossing she was doing triggered it, and knowing the whoopee guts’ lifelong history, she’ll likely be right; the Byetta she injects twice daily is always still a suspect though, given her history of nausea with it this past year.

I delivered the vittles to The Dear Leader, then with the remonstrating rodomontade safely ensconced in the Ibis, I ate vittles and we watched Kezza the Great’s 7.30 Report, but I didn’t win the battle against sleep during the next three programs on Aunty, catching but snippets between nod offs.

These nod offs must have helped, for I was mainly compos mentis when Lateline came on: The (Leigh) Sales Graph: Ms Sales had gone for a softer couture tonight, and but for one point it looked really tops: a nice hair style very enhancing of her face, subtle make-up, and though her mascara was heavier than usual, the absence of prominent eyeliner made it work, she wore a lovely upper arm covering dark blue top, her skin glowed as usual; that point?: the top had three petal or tear drop shaped cut outs in her décolletage region, which made an appealing pattern, but the central one went deep over her camisole, which was a beige shade, and gave poor contrast against her skin – a lighter blue or other shade that counterpointed and harmonised with both the dark blue of her top and her skin would have been the icing on a nevertheless luscious cake.

The opening for Lateline was the tragedy in the Samoan region with the tsunami deaths, injuries, and damage, followed by an update from ABC correspondent Kerri Ritchie, about the awful happenings there. Later Ms Sales conducted an on-screen interview with Dr Lisa Sanders of Yale University, advisor to TV's HOUSE show. It was a pleasant departure from some of the political and business vermin who hog the Lateline real estate, which I alluded to in yesterday’s posting about poor Tony Jones, having to spend effort trying to get joy from Jim Greenwood. Dr Sanders described the impossible job doctors have, of diagnosing what a patient has, quickly. I wouldn’t like to have to do it, and I’m glad there are those who are prepared to try. I also like an older doctor as a rule, over a fresh pimply faced one; the more experience a doctor has had the better.

It always makes a difference what quality of questions a presenter asks of the guest, and this is one of Ms Sales’ strong points – she has plenty of nous to ask intelligent and applicable questions. The ‘google’ question was a case in point, and Dr Sanders gave an enlightened and lenient answer. A good interview.

I enjoyed Letterman, with his guest Kelsey Grammer, telling about his heart attack. The musical act by Miranda Lambert and her band was a treat; how about the mohawk on the guitarist!

I saw a bit of Louis Theroux on Seven before retreating to my writing sanctuary, but what I saw was enough to put me off: body builder women, looking so much like men it really isn’t funny; I hope and imagine the following for this is very small in percentage of the world population terms. I even think almost the same about male body builders, at least the extreme end of it: an extremely well muscled cow, horse, or gorilla has its appeal, but that’s about where it stops for me.

I also saw five minutes of Sex and the City, for the first time, and I can say on the basis of that five minutes that it has nothing to recommend it for any age: it’s obnoxious, trying to normalise that promiscuous and ugly crude female behaviour; and this opinion is from a fellow who gets a laugh from the crudity in Little Britain: at least those two geniuses – Walliams and Lucas are not in any way trying to pretend that the behaviour they are parodying is in any way a norm, nor a desirable goal – they have simply gotten very skilful at wringing humour out of extremes.

A headache had been playing hide and seek with me all evening, but for some reason it subsided after my daily medicinal huge – I really mean huge – cup/bucket of cocoa while writing. Dawn is not very far away…


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

MILAN: “Mr Prime Minister, you would have to be living proof that style over substance never hurt anyone, would you agree?” Payton L. Inkletter asked.

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:

In other news…

29th September 2009:

Tuesday: Another of those days for me in which to name a starting time is arbitrary: despite getting half the sleep I needed the previous day, I worked all the previous night and till noon this day, having been bitten by a bug to transform my original Fool’s Paradise – Infinity on a Shoestring main website from a narrow template of 700 pixels width to a decent 1240 pixels, suitable for filling a 1280 pixel width screen resolution. It’s still only a two column page unfortunately, but that’s all the luddites still offer at Blogspot.

It was a terribly time intensive job, from the creation of a new header image to the tweaking of a million parts of the HTML, to the grindingly slow moving of fifty perhaps more widgets around the template. I threw the towel in exhausted, but with a look I’m far happier with than the pathetic standard templates Blogger still offer, even though I didn’t get anywhere near the lower portion of my page; another day… what I got done took maybe ten solid hours scattered through eighteen hours. Who would like to make a template design tool that’s as simple as moving elements around the page, with every measurement flexible; as simple as stretching heights and widths, creating new columns, you name it, and the code gets written underneath it in real time?

I did enjoy the gentle rain during the morning on this cold day, on the bamboo leaves out the window; I even ducked outside at dawn to photograph the sun shining on Richard’s cotton palms, against a black clouded sky.

The tantalising tiger woke me just before My Beloved, during which I ate my vittles, and Kezza the Great kept me informed, before I caught the last half of Insight on SBS. I was going to move, but I was as weary as they come, and the next program on SBS caught my interest: Michael Portillo’s The Truth about Violence : a compelling study of the violence tendency in human beings. The doting dove and I stayed on to watch Artscape on Aunty, and my how those twin Leswegian sisters were alike physically, with their lovely carrot top hair!

Well you’d have guessed it, next it was Lateline: The SilverToes (Tony Jones) Assay: The anchors of the various current affairs programs at Aunty regularly find themselves interviewing slime, and it’s not always represented by politicians; when it’s not a polly, it’s often a lifeform from the bottom of the business pond.

Tonight a spruce Mr Jones had an on-screen interview with CEO of the Biotechnology Industry Organisation, Jim Greenwood, to discuss the gene patenting debate. I have long been disgusted at the practice, undoubtedly involving lawyers at every level, of patenting genes and naturally occurring chemicals, and a persistent Tony Jones unsuccessfully tried to get Mr Greenwood to address the absurdity of the concept, but he did provide the opportunity, taken up with the archetypical transparency of the ethically corrupt, for Mr Greenwood to strongly demonstrate that he is all for gold before honour. It all smacked so much of the drivel the tobacco company execs spouted over recent decades in front of enquiries and courts.

It was only when the following in-studio interview with Dr Luigi Palombi, from the Centre for Governance of Knowledge and Development, that some sense and honour was demonstrated. Yes, investment has to be attracted to bio-technology, but it cannot be based on the lie represented by patenting natural occurring information and substances. Thank you Mr Jones for shining some light into the depths of the business pond with your interview of Mr Greenwood, and allowing the inner light of decency and intelligence to shine with your interview with Dr Palombi.

Lateline Business revealed a glowing Ticky Fullerton, in an attractive shade of shiny red top, with her beautiful hair effectively sitting on her shoulders. She was the antidote to that earlier Greenwood character.

Letterman had a couple of changes tonight: Paul Shaffer was away, so his band decided to play, hitting the soft drink cans while playing, pulling ring things noisily and such, and Alan Kalter was also away, and for the first time in a long time I actually clearly heard the show’s introduction narrative above the theme music before Dave’s monologue: I don’t recall the woman’s name, but she is famous methinks, and she was easy to hear meknows. Dr Oz was one of Letterman’s guests, and interestingly he struggled to get Dave to roll with the laughs.

I did some writing and got into a typical struggle for an hour with a grindingly slow computer, paralysed as per often of late when I run Firefox. I did something radical: went to bed early about three, but I barely slept at all, listening eventually instead to my favourite talking book for hours till giving up and getting up at half eight next morning.


Friday, September 25, 2009

BEDFORD: “Late night shopping? Why not open all hours?” asks P.L. Inkletter, ‘wilely’ tucking into friared porridge, as if nothing's too much trouble.

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:

In other news…

25th September 2009:

Friday: The infernal mobble woke me an hour before I planned to get up, which mobble is the bane of the twenty four carrot diametric’s and my life, and it was not an emergency or anything such like. We are ‘forbidden’ to ever turn it off lest The Dear Leader should need us, and it has ever been thus 24/7 for about a decade, maybe more. And it wasn’t the last time today that the damn thing was an unwarranted and unwelcome interruption to our day.

Having got to bed last ‘night’ after dawn the last thing I needed was for the phone to disturb us, and neither did the luscious lemon, for she had her typical type of poor sleeping night. Nevertheless, I returned to sleep for an hour then got up and pushed on, and got ready for taking Bob swimming. I got an update from Mum when I phoned her in hospital on what is happening regarding her abdominal pains – none the wiser yet – then was about to leave for Bob’s

I noticed a message had been received on the evil mobble, and asked the wily wonder to check it, and then my plans rapidly changed… The Ashford Traveller’s Joy single treadle spinning wheel we ordered three weeks ago had finally arrived at Bilby Yarns in Myaree, so the message said: I offered the serendipitous spindle that we go to pick it up rather than have me go to Bob’s, and it took little convincing of the crafty crocodile to say ‘Yes!’. We got on the phone to Bob’s people, and they arranged for me to see Bob on Wednesday next week instead, bless his and their caring socks, and we got cracking and organised ourselves, for this meant we would be able to visit my mother in hospital a few suburbs away from Myaree, in Murdoch, after getting the coveted goods for the delirious (sheep) duffer, all a thousand miles south of us in this ridiculously spread out capital city known as Perth.

On the way, I needed to find a toilet for a badly needed wee wee, and we pulled into the park on at the intersection of Charles and Vincent Streets, Beatty Park in fact, and I had to hoof it from the car park to the amenities block maybe a hundred and fifty metres, only to find the gents’ padlocked, and it was all of three o’clock. There is a toilets logo at this park in the UBD mapbook, and I was pissed off to tell the truth, so I hope if any householders were looking over their back fences into the vacant block near the amenities block that they can find some effective and free counselling, in case they saw Payton L. Inkletter watering the kikuyu in broad daylight near the red brick wall; this park has children’s play gear, and it is large and has reticulated mown lawn, but the council can’t keep the toilets open during the middle of the bloody day; sue me, but how damn parsimonious; and from the smell emanating from the grass, many others had been reduced to the same desperate relief.

The freeway was slow going south, as the long weekend traffic picked up, yet we made it in to Bilby Yarns half an hour before closing time. We had a close moment of danger on said Kwinana Freeway when a non-generous sod surged forward lest I move into his left lane and deny him one car length, despite my long advance warning by indicating; in front of us and unrelated the exact same bastardry by another driver almost caused a serious accident between three other cars.

After taking possession of, and paying the remainder owed, of the Ashford wheel, the spoilt sparrow and I drove to St John of God Hospital in Murdoch, where, when we found her room in the Bridget Clancy Ward, I had to gently arouse my mother, who looked so small and frail, in her bed. She was surprised and pleased to see us, and we spent an hour chatting about all the apparent non-treatment she’d had so far, and the tests and such, as well as general chit chat. While we were there a staff member came in and informed us of an ominous transfer of Mum’s case to a different specialty, so it might not be a simple case of gall stone trouble after all.

That second nuisance phone call on the mobble came while we were visiting with Mum; it was someone who can never seem to understand that in his case, this number is for emergencies only, yet the culprit regularly uses it for anything but, as again this instance. It caused Missus Inkletter much consternation, and as I took the call I made a snap decision to reveal information it was preferable to us both to have kept to ourselves about our whereandwhatabouts, but now no longer possible.

On our return journey the freeway south was choked for tens of kilometres, poor suckers, while we had a good run north; at least they’ll have the new Perth to Bunbury Highway to help make up for it once they escape the gridlock of the city. We managed to get in almost half an hour’s shopping at Woolies at Dog Swamp before closing time, a couple of attractive middle aged love-birds, hankering to get their rocks off, or however Kath and Kel express it.

We stopped at our local centre and bought some kosher halal chicken takeaway, Chooks, for The Dear Leader, and then dropped it to him, before finally getting home and getting some baked beans on toast rustling up for moi, and a sandwich for the tantalising takeaway, given that we were too late to do the normal meal preparation. (Those who know me know that I speak in wide generalities when I say ‘we’ in regard to the rustling up, for I busied myself with my business, while the bootiful booticoot busied herself with the kitchen stuff.)

I was not impressed to learn from the great hoon himself, Alan Carpenter, on Stateline, that he is retiring next weekend from politics, causing a by-election for his seat of Willagee. Not content to have cynically called an unnecessarily early State election, nor with losing that election, now he’s leaving 3 years early, when he won his seat and thus was committing to serve his electorate for the full term. Not impressed Alan! Yes your family might want to see more of you, but you committed to your electorate to serve for 4 years. Thanks for ending a mainly highly principled time in politics – before the tawdry tactic of calling a six month early election – on such an ordinary note. I called him a ‘hoon’ just now due to his mediocre stunt of calling that early election, an act of hoonery as far I’m concerned. It’s a pity, for he had done much at even personal cost to hold up principles in politics for years, unlike the majority of his peers.

After The Collectors I had to retire, being so weary I could hardly remain awake. I left the excited expatriate to practice spinning on her new toy, and fell asleep in the boudoir.

I was joined by the voltaged vouchsafer in the cot about half eleven, but by half twelve I was sneezing hard and had to arise, which of course was the end of having any hope of returning to the Land of Nod. So I got to see New Zealand Prime Minister John Key deliver Letterman’s Top Ten. It was funny, and he was a good sport, and his accent was almost a caricature of the Kiwi accent.

Next I watched a recording of Lateline: The (Leigh) Sales Graph: A departure tonight for Ms Sales jewellery wise, and a successful one, for she had a short necklace of green shaded stones which worked very well within her approaching inverse-fastigiate neckline, a dark long sleeved jacket, and subtle leaning make-up, with a flattering hair style. My first treat was her in-studio chit chat with Stephen Long: The (Stephen) Long and Short of It: What a relief to see him back in the flesh, for it crossed my suspicious mind that he might have met foul play at the direction if not the hands of the Ultimo dames, in order to eventually have a complete female takeover of the weekday evening schedules. And as always, Mr Long looked immaculate, his blue-grey tie setting off his crisp white shirt so well, encapsulated within a dark suit jacket. His hair had recently been retouched by the wizards in Make-up after his mum – who I’m sure still irons his shirts – in the green room, had yet again tousled it, for she can’t keep her fingers out of her boy’s gorgeous curls.

To the substance: in accord with his track record, Mr Long gave illuminating analysis of the global banking woes and the G20’s dillydallying and avoidance of the toxic assets problem; he noted that accounting practices that conceal reality are sadly being knowingly employed by the banks. He also incisively pointed out that the leading nations are acting as if the main banking problem is how to avoid the next catastrophe as if the current one is sorted. He was direct in his reply to Ms Sales’ question as to whether the G20 would succeed in avoiding another financial crisis: “No!” And I would take more notice of Mr Long than any politician. I wasn’t denied my icing: that inimitable teeth baring smile to end the interview with all the ferocity, the smouldering menace, of a month old Rottweiler puppy.

The final interview of the program was as profound as it was dignified and its subject disconsolate: Washington Post reporter David Finkel joined Ms Sales to discuss the subject matter of his book, ‘The Good Soldiers’: the experiences of the soldiers in the 2-16 battalion sent to Baghdad in 2007. I found it harrowing to listen and watch as Mr Finkel responded so fully and honestly to Ms Sales’ sensible questions, with a gentle voice giving away a soul which has witnessed much at the edge of hell, made the harder by its keen associated mind, and it seemed to me that the Post reporter was working hard at times to keep the rawness of the pain he had seen subdued. I was inspired by the humility of David Finkel, as he deferred to the trauma and stress inflicted upon the soldiers he lived with and accompanied.

Ms Sales gave Mr Finkel a singular accolade at interview’s end for the quality of his book ‘The Good Soldiers’, which he accepted with graciousness. I think that Leigh Sales was an ideal choice for conducting this interview, and in no small measure for the years she will have spent cultivating the many qualities, intellectual, emotional, and ‘characteral’, that are the salt needed to leverage the gems within her interlocutor. Another special interview now tucked away in my archive: thank you Ms Sales. I have more to add on this blue diamond of an interview, including pictures, here.

I wrote and researched, and the hours in my sanctuary flew by, until I joined the poor peevish peckerwood between the sheets. It was almost dawn, and the powdered possum had been coughing for hours, and was coughing without let up still. She is taking the virus serious harder than I did and am, but mine is still with me, lingering. I convinced her to take more cough mixture, a dash of the old Irish Moss, and we chatted in the cot about the likelihood of her having a touch of asthma.


Thursday, September 24, 2009

UTAH: “Why do husbands usually die before their wives? Coz they want to!” says Payton L. Inkletter, noting that ten wives would’ve meant sudden death.

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:

In other news…

24th September 2009:

Thursday: My plan to arise by one was sunk by feeling so tired it would have been dangerous, so I got the Celtic crocodile to leave me till three, then till half five, effectively killing our tentative plans to visit the local major shopping centre in search of a blender, and petrol, and various bits and pieces. The bastards, by the way!: coming home yesterday from Guildford, I felt no pressure to get petrol while it was cheap, for the word was that it still had a few cents to drop given the current world and local circumstances; I hadn’t factored in the long weekend though had I?, and the inevitability of the bastards putting up the prices just before the weekend, which is precisely what is starting to happen.

So one of the reasons to go with the chalky crocodile shopping today was to get fuel from the local Woolies, which Fuelwatch’s emails have informed me are among the lowest around. It was too late for us both to go, so I left just before six to post a get well card and 20 plus photo prints to Mum in hospital in time for the day’s mail clearance, and instead of Woolies I went to the closer Shell-Coles Express for fuel – a bit dearer, but how I hate the queues down at Woolies – then dashed into the nearby Narvey Hormone to look at blenders; the one I want wasn’t there, so maybe tomorrow on the way to Bob’s.

I took vittles around to The Dear Leader, then the domestic blissard fed me mine, and we watched My Beloved, Kezza the Great, and Catalyst, except that I missed the first segment of this latter while I was phoning Mum for an update: still no specialist visit to tell her what’s needed for her abdomen pain. Just when I wanted to dash to the computer to research and write for an hour, the crafty crocheter insisted I find another pile of videos online about hyperbolic crocheting, and then she sat and watched them, kissing goodbye to that hour for me; we need two things: a second pootah on a network, and a missus who can use a computer adequately on her lonesome ownsome; “The mouse is too sensitive, I hate it!, “Come and find this Darls”, “What do I do now?”.

Q&A was worth watching, and my word how disciplined tonight’s show was! Anthropologist Peter Sutton was given the opportunity several times to give detailed answers uninterrupted, and his analysis was certainly a mind stimulating thing. To my pleasant surprise, former Foreign Minister Alexander Downer gave some mature and unusually petulant free comments tonight.

Next it was Lateline, so there was no going anywhere, except for a quick tinkle: The (Leigh) Sales Graph: Looking ready to seriously interview, Ms Sales’ hair and face were just right, and her outfit was an attractive jacquardish diamond patterned jacket; and tonight’s interview was with a favourite interlocutor of mine (not personally unfortunately, for I’m not famous enough), Niall Ferguson, who waxed wise, under Ms Sales’ pertinent questioning, on the global banking system and its persistent problems, despite the upheavals of the past twelve months. Mr Ferguson looked great also, in his light green jacket, blue shirt, and dark blue tie: in fact, his style was quite a refreshingly successful departure from the usual dark suit male brigade. His exposé on the where the toxic assets currently sit was sobering, and I think he makes a good point about the relative red herring that bankers’ salary packages actually is, even though many of us find them unacceptable.

I like his line: ‘institutions that are too big to fail are too big to exist’, and I wish the G20 leaders would act less on the sexy stuff, like bankers’ salaries, and more on the real sources of the problems in the banking system. Mr Ferguson’s insights into China’s changing import export saving spending balance were arresting also, for who will keep funding the U.S.A.’s deficit lifestyle? He took full advantage of the opportunities Ms Sales gave him to expound uninterruptedly his cogent arguments, and it is another appreciated interview for my archive.

Missus Inkletter and I enjoyed Letterman’s Stupid Pet Tricks, as we always do, and my favourite was the dog that hopped into the luggage trolley.

I retreated to my sanctuary to write and research, and as usual the hours sped by.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

KAMMERER: “Surely it’s no coincidence that I obsessively pat my wife’s bottom, and so did my father pat my mum’s?” Payton L. Inkletter quizzes his DNA

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:

In other news…

23rd September 2009:

Wednesday: A couple of alarm resets were the order of the morning, after yet another very poor sleep, broken, I having resorted to listening for hours to my favourite talking book while lying there waiting for Mistress Nodette to envelop me in her night season charms.

The fact that it was not long before dawn when I had retreated to the low thread polycottons didn’t help, nor did the green gilled gargoyle’s several hour middle of the night spell of heart racing and general unwellness, which she eventually nailed down to the Chinese food she had for dinner, a present from a kindly Meg Deeler, who dropped it off as a thank you. The slightest touch of MSG and the delicate daffodil is floored.

So I dragged myself up at midday, and somehow got to Bob’s at Guildford before half three, with a kitchen clean up and stop over for fruit and vegetables at Benara Fresh on the way thrown in. For me that’s moving like lightning. Poor Bob, he’d got Derek to phone to check if I was going to come today, as it’s 16 days since I last took him out, due to my ill-health, my virus serious.

We had a productive time at Swan AquaticBob lapping like a drake possessed, and I actually did a practice new first page for Venty Still (I’m getting bestirred about the project, which I began a year ago and have essentially shelved) – followed by a walk at near on dark, along the river at Fish Market Reserve and a cup of tea for Bob, water for moi (Reeve Chocson, in case you read this!).

I called into the Commonwealth Bank’s ATM’s in Malaga on my way home, well after dark, and mine was the only car to park in front of them. It took all of three seconds for me to decide to reverse away and leave, despite being low on cash, for a couple of youngish adults were sitting-laying a couple of feet away from them, surveying me, and appearing to be somewhat under the influence of some kind of mind altering chemicals, be they of the alcoholic genus or otherwise. The fact that they were of Aboriginal descent made no difference to my decision, but I mention it because if they were on mischief bent – which could be in the form of asking for a donation, or enforcing one – and had already spurred similar decisions from folk before me and would after me, then how sad that our law-abiding Aboriginal citizens keep battling uphill with the stigma caused by such episodes and sights. And I do appreciate fairly well how this marginalised cohort can come to be in this sad situation in the first place, as well as my role in general to contributing to its perpetuation, as one of a more advantaged class.

The darling dilettante fed me, while I caught the Paul Keating interview with Kezza the Great on The 7.30 Report: The More O’Kerry (O’Brien) Volume: I was tired, so I might not have concentrated as well as I’d liked, but my overwhelming feeling from this enjoyable in-studio interview is how calm, relaxed, and dignified it was. Old Prime Ministers can actually become mellow and cuddly and almost likeable, but I suppose time will tell if John Howard can ever morph so, like Malcom Fraser did, to his credit.

We watched the Aunty line-up together till half nine when I had to hit the sack, and was woken after an hour and a half by a headache, and somehow managed to stay up. And so I relied on a few minutes of recording the paranormal pomegranate had done for me on the end of our full disc to see the start of Lateline: The (Leigh) Sales Graph: Did Ms Sales look superb? Ms Sales looked superb! Everything was in place for a professional and elegant appearance: a dark long sleeved jacket with ideally contrastive maroon modesty panel – to both skin and jacket – very fine and minimalist jewellery on her décolletage, subtle understated make-up, flattering hair style; definitely a template for how to present for this role. The interview tonight was with an initially slightly acerbic Malcolm Turnbull: The (Malcolm Turnbull) Beef: looking jet-lagged in London – at least from what I could divine from my later vodcast download (it was approaching half ten in the morning in London, so jet lag is a fair bet for the banker turned polly’s haggard appearance) – I speak only of Mr Turnbull’s mug, for as usual, he dressed most spiffendipitously, he was in no hurry to give up the limelight. Ms Sales acceptably tried to keep out of his comfort zone throughout the 15 minute interview, but there were some moments of levity generously mirrored on both sides of the equator. Mr Turnbull got a laugh from Ms Sales when he remarked that he didn’t think ‘Wilson Tuckey at one end and Greg Hunt at the other’ – Ms Sales’ words – were exactly polar opposites regarding the ETS legislation.

Mr Turnbull has my ears when he correctly points out the the ETS is a work in progress, and the devil is in the regulations which haven’t been worked out. I liked his point that ‘you cannot allow your conception of the perfect to be the enemy of the good’, and it wasn’t the only wisdom which he offered this interview. Overall, despite his jet lag, I think he presented himself very well, his arguments and responses were very good, even though he drifted whenever he could into the pure political void, but Ms Sales kept the discipline up and caught these drifts early, with cracks of the whip such as ‘We’ve made that point…’, and to his credit, the polly responded to the discipline maturely.

I think Mr Turnbull is more right than wrong with his insistence that waiting till February rather than November this year is the more prudent and sensible approach, and although it is always a matter of the slug calling the snail slimey, I think the Rudd Government is guilty of politicking on this rush for a November decision on the ETS. And Mr Turnbull bravely answered Ms Sales’ charge/question that his party was no better off after a year under his leadership than under Brendan Nelson, not missing a beat. In a final attempt to get Mr Turnbull to get ruffled and into some mud slinging with Mr Nelson, he masterfully and immediately turned the request to give an assessment of Mr Nelson’s personality into a good natured humorous riposte, and this elicited a cheerful ‘You know you want to!’ from Ms Sales, giving us an unexpectedly goodwill note to end this interview on. Well done Ms Sales, for keeping the pressure on, asking some icky questions, and making the polly earn his sausages and eggs in London, all the while oiling the flow of humour when it unexpectedly arose. This interview was a kickshaw.

The tasty titbit and I watched Letterman interview Bill Clinton, and then she went her way, and I went mine, to write and titivate all the remainder of the night, until I phoned Mum in St John of God Murdoch about half seven in the morning for a progress report on her possible gall stone problem, but she is none the wiser, still waiting (3 days now) to speak to a specialist who can tell her if she needs an operation. It was after half eight when I finally crawled in beside the chalcedony chameleon.


Friday, September 18, 2009

ITALICA: ‘Felicior Augusto, melior Traiano’, the prayer in honour of the virtuous pagan, bemuses and pleases Payton L. Inkletter: “Ah, Hadrian’s dad…”

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:

In other news…

18th September 2009:

Friday: It was hard to get up after only four hours sleep at best; but I had an appointment to keep, and I need about two hours to crank the system. The meritorious milkweed accompanied me for the op shopping and ordinary shopping that we planned to combine into the trip, and to her probable amazement I was spot on time for the ultrasound of my throat at Sterling Radiology.

The opportune knockers scoured the nearby op shop while I was under the sound knife – at which she found a Pyrex bowl, to replace her daily use one of the past umpteen years which I broke early this year for but ten bucks, identical but for colour – then I drove her up Balcatta Road to another op shop, the very premises in fact wherein Payton the Koala Bear was found, as an orphan, by the mothercrafty dismissive; but it was because I fell in love with the lovable mite that saved him from the fate Missus Inkletter had planned for him: to live as a decoration in The Homestead Balingup; now he enjoys fame and notoriety as the Fool’s Paradise – Infinity on a Shoestring mascot.

Next I dutifully delivered the vivacious vixen to Textile Traders in Balcatta, all the while at these last two destinations resting in the car, glad of it too.

After this we descended upon Stirling Central and shopped but stopped before we dropped, checking out Target for a blender (poor selection in the cheap and nasty price range) before doing a Woolies sortie, coming away with essentials, for me such as Homebrand Cocoa Powder, being a cocoa addict, as well as sundry sundries.

I took a wrong turn and we ended up driving home through the back streets, which was good, for it gave us a chance to see the amazing changes going on in the local older suburbs. Missus Inkletter spotted her now deceased best friend’s brother, on the verandah of the family home of forty years ago.

With near death approaching, I unloaded the car once home, and after vittles and watching The Collectors, I had to try to get some sleep, while the the titivating termagant span wool, helped by white comforters – me that is. I got maybe an hour in in Mistress Nodette’s embrace, and a worsening headache forced me awake and up for a multiple dose of white comforters. I noticed it was close to Lateline time, so I sat in the Ibis, for the the titillating termite was still spinning in the rocking chair I bought for her a thousand years ago for breastfeeding Baby Inkletter in, planted in front and blocking my Player Recliner. The (Leigh) Sales Graph: Surely not!, I thought, surely the ladies of the night at Ultimo haven’t had that harmless one month old Rottweiller puppy – Stephen Long – taken out, just as it appears they have with Kerry O’Brien, who hasn’t had hide nor red hair seen of himself for weeks? So tonight I missed the unique treat of The (Stephen) Long and Short of It; oh well, life goes on…

Ms Sales looked superb in a strong red jacket, her hair and face complementing her overall appearance very well. Which leads me firstly to backtrack a day: last night Ms Sales had a departure with her hair style, and it was spectacular: almost like a frozen fire, helped along by the natural red ochre she is follically blessed with (why not take a look, and while you’re there, listen to Christopher Pyne briefly and manically answering two questions from Ms Sales – the short sound files are immediately above the latest posting). Come to think of it, I’ve fought fires less impressive in my farming youth. Her dark jacket and white blouse worked well with the hair style. She certainly had Chris Mooney’s attention during her interview on the subject matter of his co-authored book, ‘Unscientific America’. She conducted the interview very well, and Mr Mooney took the opportunities her germane questions provided to address the issues rather well.

I can’t leave last night without one criticism of Ms Sales’ appearance, and I’ll be mildly cryptic and a touch long-winded, whilst also noting that the irony of my offering of opinion is not lost on me: I have said here before that I’m glad I’m not a woman, at least in this yet early era of mankind’s development. A woman her beauty; a man his strength. That generality stated, television is obviously a visual medium; we are a relatively rich society, and thus most all of us can dress with a high degree of discretion. We dress our bodies, and we dress our heads. Almost all of us do this to maximise our approval from the people we will be visually interacting with. Our head roughly speaking has two parts: our hair and our face. If we go to the trouble to choose flattering clothes, it stands to reason that we (more so women – refer to my earlier generality) will also choose flattering styles for our hair and face.

Faces and head shapes differ enormously, and thus the hair styles that complement them differ also; some work far better than others. The same applies to make-up. I will use my oft praised example, Ali Moore here to illustrate a point: Ms Moore’s on-air face make-up differs very little, and I believe it’s because she has settled on an effect – subtle and understated – that she realises complements her natural beauty very well, and so she sticks with it, to her credit. There are other women who vary their make-up relatively a great deal, as if they believe each variation achieves the maximal enhancement of their underlying natural beauty equally well. However this is not actually the case with some; why would a woman spend effort on make-up to look like a Picasso one day, and a Rembrandt the next, when each day she could look like a Rembrandt, proven by the fact that she often does? Eyeliner is tricky thing, and can be unforgiving to natural beauty, on some faces more than others. Those with ears to hear, let them hear.

Finally to tonight’s interview in which Ms Sales had Rod Cameron in-studio and Michael Kroger on-screen, to discuss Canberra’s shenanigans this week. I’ve said before that politicians need to be kept uncomfortable when involved in a political discussion, and to a lesser extent I think this caveat also applies to those of clear political bias, be they former pollies, business folk, commentators, but fortunately these two interlocutors were explicitly polite, civilised, and pleasant, even when they had opposite views, thus making Ms Sales’ job considerably less stressful, my caveat almost supererogatory. The discussion these three had was most enjoyable. The lack of the ad nauseum ‘my dick and the dick of everyone on my team’s dick is bigger’ exchanges so prototypical of most of our politicians was so refreshing. Notice how safely and gracefully Cameron was able to say, in a riposte to Kroger through Ms Sales, “No, Michael that’s absolute nonsense!’, regarding the public’s long term resonance with Turnbull’s Government debt charges rather than his poor judgment with such episodes as the Godwin Grech affair. Kroger told a funny story very well about a fellow who asked his opinion about his plan to run for Liberal Party preselection; it makes me think that he could be a very successful stand up comedian. Both men were uber gentleman with each other, and very respectful of Ms Sales. What a delightful discussion, and there was no lack of meat in spite of the lack of fireworks or rudeness.

I retired relatively early about two in the morning. The splatter day paint was slumbering, but coughing a lot, having obviously caught my virus serious, poor thing.


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

GDAŃSK: “If you can’t stand the heat, then get out of the kitchen,” reckons Payton L. Inkletter, using the Fahrenheit scale, marking Gabriel’s passing

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:

In other news…

16th September 2009:

Wednesday: Oh how lovely, yet another day with rain clouds about, and a little rain: this September has been divine, for almost every day thus far has had at least a tad of precipitation; this will buffer us for the roasting we’re surely in for as always this summer.

I arose about the time the garrulous gallivanter returned from her spinning session with the Dianella group over in Menora, and this might be her third visit with them; it’s gratifying to see her enjoying an activity which she enjoys so much, that is just for her, and of a genus which she’s not indulged for approaching thirty years – ‘me’ time that is. Her battle now is to take a corresponding slice of time from certain time stealers each week, so that she is not cramming this leisure activity on top of all else, thus adding another layer of exhaustion to her already exhausting life.

The deadly derringer came with me for the drive and outing to my doctor’s appointment, miraculously snatched last minute by phone yesterday, when another patient cancelled, and at half four I was masked up in the waiting room of Dr Barry and colleagues; the mask being a precaution, for at this stage I might have been a swine flu supporter.

Dr Barry quickly established that mine was simply a virus serious, to quote my dear niece Alice, who at about 12 said to me, “You’ve got a virus serious Uncle Payton”, referring to my mental state. Anyway, I was glad to learn that the chest/throat troubles of the past six days were of the kind that I’ll be able to shake off unaided by ‘botticks’; sadly, Missus Inkletter is now displaying my early symptoms; but then, what can you expect when the girl is always all over me like a rash; I’m not blaming her for that, for she would need to be a high order of angel to resist me, and she of a certainty ain’t one of those: I’d wager she at most might be a cherub, one of those fourth serial cherubs, you know, the more physical kind.

My kind doctor attended to various other woes and worries of mind, and I came away with an ultrasound referral to examine that mysterious lump in my sternal notch, as well as an eye clinic referral at Charlie Gees; they might be able to tell me what’s up with my weirdly behaving right eye and what the brown stain is in my vision, the one that a high tech private eye clinic couldn’t find three years ago, while all the while I could see it as plain as day.

After this the celestial vision and I drove a little further to the beach at Sorrento, and enjoyed a walk along the footpath overlooking the Indian Ocean, with rain clouds relieving themselves on the dimming horizon: it was a rare treat for us, two extremely attractive middle-aged baby boomers, wanting to get our rocks off (thanks Kath and Kel!) and we later sat in the car until the night settled on the ocean horizon, having taken a number of photos of Payton the Koala Bear with the spectacular backdrop of deep grey clouds arching over Rottnest Island, and crying their cargo down in veils in the distance.

We were home in time to watch My Beloved – well, strictly I did – while the devoted daughter took vittles to The Dear Leader, who has been keeping his distance while I’ve been sick. I was so tired I was falling asleep during The 7.30 Report, hosted by another celestial vision, a white with black speckles chiffon bloused and black camisoled Ali Moore, which is a pity, for she cuts a much more arresting sight than that old crusty red head, Kerry O’Brien: speaking of whom, I’m now all but convinced that Ms Moore and Ms Sales, with the assistance of Mr Epstein, have liquidated him, in order to win The 7.30 Report for the young fillies own. I, due to will power, rallied, and watched the children run The New Inventors, being especially impressed with the life saving potential of the rear lights on the jacket for motor cyclists, before enjoying Spicks and Specks (if you don’t enjoy this show, go to your doctor and check that you are human), and then Star Stories, upon the merits of which my jury is still out; maybe it’s my doubts about Kevin Bishop, or should I say prejudices? If so, I should strip those away, and examine simply how funny and talented he is or isn’t.

What I planned to do next was write until Lateline, but Madam Nodette had other plans for me, luring me into her blissful embrace: I asked the doting derringer to let me sleep for an hour, and wake me to watch said current affairs program, but when she did, I, from the depths of a blissful slumber, shooed her away, thus missing Lateline.

When the bedraggled Beretta finally came to bed at almost one, she woke me, and try as I might to return to sleep, I couldn’t, so not long before two I got out of the warm as toast bed to write, leaving the slumbering sweetmeat to the designs of the night season. During the wee small hours, which for me continued till way after sunrise, maybe two hours in fact, I managed to get Lateline’s podcast, and I enjoyed watching Lateline during a break from my writing: The (Leigh) sales graph: Ms Sales looked most acceptably professional in a long sleeved dark jacket, and her hair was styled to good effect. The interview she conducted with the Opposition’s Member for Warringah Tony Abbott and the Government’s Small Business Minister Craig Emerson had a number of gems buried within it, and is now in my archive. Both men looked dapper: Mr Emerson approaching Rafael Epstein’s Agent 007 class, Mr Abbott approaching a highly coutured clown – his tie was arresting, looking edible and very sweet, highly sugared in fact.

The Tony Abbott Bovine Backsides’ Harvest: it is almost always entertaining when Mr Abbott is on, and tonight was no exception. Ms Sales certainly kept the whip in her hand tonight with both men, pulling them up and keeping them moving, to her credit, and to their credit they behaved relatively well under this discipline. Those gems: try “the Archangel Gabriel could be leading the Opposition at the moment and he would do it tough” from Abbott, but shortly after that wonderful line his body language belied his claim “…but Malcolm is certainly the best person to lead us”; if his head shook any more vigorously it would have fallen off while he uttered those words. Earlier he made a very astute remark to the effect: ‘Politicians do have to be people of conviction, but we still have to win elections … there is always a tension between those two objectives … we can’t save the country from Opposition…’ as a reply to the issue of supporting the Government’s Emissions Trading Scheme. I commend him for his honesty and pragmatism on this point.

Later Abbott used an expression that was new to me: ‘praised with faint damns’, after Emerson missed the opportunity to be spontaneously gracious – rather he was belatedly mildly gracious – to Abbott in return for a deal Abbott offered regarding some reciprocal recognition of successes of each side’s policies. It took Ms Sales’ interjection “So no credit there to the Howard-Costello legacy?” to get Emerson to finally give some recognition, and Abbott was spot on with his ‘praised with faint damns’ remark (I later googled it!), and good on him for being so good natured about it.

This interview ended in a most refreshingly civilised manner, with very pleasant acknowledgment of each other by the pollies, led again by Abbott. Thank you Ms Sales for this interview. I have posted a picture of the interview and some more description at my new site, THE ABECEDARIAN PROJECT, which keeps an eye on ‘The people, the scuttlebutt, the intrigues of the ABC’.

The Birmingham beauty had a stint up and dressmaking while I wrote, due to her inability to fall back asleep after a tinkle break. She was asleep again by the time I finally rejoined her.


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