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Saturday, October 31, 2009

LOW FELL: Swanning about, Payton L. Inkletter had a light bulb moment, but the partial vacuum in his head soon put paid to the moment’s incandescence.

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:

In other news…

31st October 2009:

Saturday: For the untold millions among the billions of daily visitors to Fool’s Paradise – Infinity on a Shoestring family of sites, who are itching to see me write ‘It’s Sarrerdi!’, your cups now runneth over.

The untold story did last night’s kitchen clean up while I slept today, and then snuck in and reset my alarm an hour and a half later, so that I could get more badly needed sleep; she is a kind old dragon; I had estimated the alarm timing to give me temporal room to clean up before our special guests arrived for din dins tonight, The Chocson Two. So I hadn’t been up long, mid to late afternoon, when the Geralton Wax arrived back from a gallivant, ALONE, which rarity elicited a gushing explanation: Umple Dais had been assisting The Dear Leader to put a metal ramp over his front door step in preparation for the supercharged Renault Spider gopher that old kindly Maurice is giving to the senior of the aforementioned pair.

Less now to do, less time to do it in, the result was still a mad rush to help the kitchen contrary prepare for din dins, just to be with – wait for it – the FOUR of us, a rarity to reminisce over in hallowed tones in the future. Well before seven the Chocsons arrived, and while Reeve was recovering somewhat from his virus serious, Chocci was in the throes, this family infection being the reason The Dear Leader hadn’t joined us.

We had but three visits by Halloweeners, six kids followed by five kids followed by three, who all went away much the sweeter.

Our time with the Chocsons always flies by like a firefly, speaking of which, we watched most of the first episode of that TV series during the evening, the Chocsons having brought it with them; I’d never seen it before. It was after eleven when they left, and the dust settled on an enjoyable evening together.

After the dainty derringer was put to bed a while later, I hit the writing, researching, and walking; yes, I’ve been bitten again by the greater cicatrised overnight walking bug, having walked for half an hour most nights this past week, while listening – when the wind is low – to my favourite talking book. This walk, as with several this week, was chilly, which suits me fine: stinging hands are a small price to pay for a perspiration free body; I have the trade off to juggle: exhaustion sets in big time after the walks, but fitness has innumerable benefits, let alone the psychological boost of good old fashioned walking in the outdoors, and fortunately I’ve long overcome the initial safety fear of walking in the dead of night.

On my return I watched the recording of Lateline that the whimpering Winchester did for me last Wednesday night when I had to crash early: The (Leigh) Sales Graph: proving that some blessed women can look top notch in plain apparel, Ms Sales’ simple dark top with a small almost rounded opening was complemented by subtle make-up and a mildly loose hanging hairstyle, minus jewellery but for small earrings, and it all worked very well. Her major interview guest was Dr Marty Natalegawa, Indonesia's Foreign Minister for barely one week, and it was our at our ANU that he obtained his doctorate in philosophy. Dr Natalegawa was well presented, tiny framed as he was, his suit jacket so encompassing his puny pectorals that it barely revealed any of his white shirt and maroon tie; when he got speaking he struck me quickly as an asset to his Government.

His responses to Ms Sales’ questions, many of them appearing to be aimed at levering out something sensational on the asylum seekers’ issue current, were cool, calm, and collected, and I found myself thinking what a diplomat he was being; later I read online that he has fulfilled diplomacy roles for Indonesia, thus explaining perfectly his soothing and non-hysterical responses.

I wonder how many journalists who repeatedly push potentially inflammatory or controversial questions actually would do so if there was no pressure or expectation to do so for ratings or the prize of scoops? The push was on in this interlocution to get a reaction to something controversial such as a forcing of the asylum seekers from the Oceanic Viking, or a refusal to allow them to embark on Indonesian soil, or some such; this said, I’m sympathetic to that spot between a rock and a hard place many of the more decent journalists find themselves in.

Sympathy notwithstanding, I did not find the Australian side of this interview as satisfying as I would have liked – as good as it was – and I’ll just use this one question that was asked of Dr Natalegawa as a rough generalisation and indication of the thinking that underlies my concerns: “But what benefit does this Australian policy bring to Indonesia, if asylum seekers are heading away from Indonesia towards Australia? Wouldn't it be easier for your country to simply let them go?’ That question is actually mildly ugly as well as flawed; it does nothing to enhance the reputation of any journalist asking it.

The Lateline bulletin tonight had several instances before this interview of the ugliness and softheadedness saturating the whole matter among the Australian body politic and public; I am disgusted by the Opposition’s approach of highly negative attack – continuing the only theme these moronic bad losers seem to know – on the Government as they struggle to deal with these difficult asylum seeker and refugee matters; they clearly don’t realise, or perhaps don’t care, that they are doing harm to Australia’s interests by being such trouble makers, and seem bent on extracting every drop of dubious political advantage they think they can get out of the problem; this difficulty calls for bipartisanship, and clearly also calls for greater men and women than currently occupy many of the seats in our Federal Parliament.

I should state some of my opinions on this issue, rather than hide them: every nation in the world has the justifiable right to control movement of people to and from its borders; geographical location places real obligations upon a nation; asylum seekers have no right to demand transfer to particular nations; every nation has the justifiable right to try to maintain and improve the wellbeing of its own people, but not at the expense of other nations; the plight of massive numbers of people is terrible, and the right thing to do is for all nations to always keep working to alleviate this unacceptable suffering; the numbers of people in desperate need is so huge that, most unfortunately, a great many almost certainly will never be acceptably helped for the foreseeable or short to mid-term future at least; this sobering fact behoves the nobler citizens of each nation who are materially blessed to maintain an attitude of gratitude for their lot, and to live in such a way as to contribute to a net improvement for all in the great family of nations – a type of good old noblesse oblige, in fact.

A tad more of my opinion: not that it pleases me, but no-one has the right to occupy indefinitely a ship they don’t own when care is being offered off-ship; contrary to the P.J. O’Rourkes and Paul Howes of the world, the extent of the effort expended and the dangers battled to make it to Australia are neither sensible, pragmatic, nor valid criterions for accepting people to become a part of our country, or any country.

I kept on watching the recording, and beheld that pre-eminently professional journalist, Ali Moore deliver another Lateline Business, even though it was from the mid-week 28th October broadcast: The Ali Moore or Less: Ms Moore, as with Ms Sales earlier, presented herself very simply attired, her short sleeved dark top completely unadorned, without even any décolletage to adorn, and her trademark subtle make-up and simple loose hanging hairstyle complement the picture so very well.

Her major interview guest tonight was the Business Council of Australia's fresh out of the oven President, Graham Bradley, who sartorially presented himself excellently, his dark suit and white tie being set off so well with a yellow and orange dappled dark tie that you’d crawl backwards over broken glass to own, even just catch a glimpse of. I’ve not heard anything of the fellow, but I like him greatly on the strength of this interview alone. Ms Moore demonstrated her dedication to research, just as Ms Sales does, and was impressively up with the issues pertinent to Mr Bradley’s new role, and was able to saliently rejoin on the fly to his remarks. Mr Bradley strikes me as a fine representative with high ideals to grace the top job of such an important body, and I liked his answers, some rather excellent, to Ms Moore’s probing questions. Thank you both for the pearl of an interview.

I can’t leave this one without a word about a glitch in the editing, which did not remain on the podcast version: Ms Moore interrupted Mr Bradley at one point to suggest he wipe some sweat from his upper lip, and it wasn’t edited out; I, and doubtless countless other Aunty viewers, after this rare frisson had subsided, took it in our strides, for it was all very polite and proper, as well as human (try roasting under studio lights without perspiring you naysayers!), but Ms Moore apologised at interview’s end to the audience for the ‘shocking’ edit; her choice of word was a harbinger of something ominous to come: when she signed off, missing was her trademark smile to die-to-stay-up-late-to-see, and I thought to myself, God help the poor bastard responsible for that edit, he’s going to get a mauling, possibly a castration, for Ms Moore is one very unhappy double-X-chromosomed chappy! If he had any wits, he’d have taken off before the show’s end, and faced her tomorrow (Thursday that would have meant; better still, called in sick, and not had to work on Lateline Business till Monday, by which time the glamorous queen of late night current affairs would have had time to notice again the charm of the forest formed by the trees.) Even the iView version of this night’s Lateline was not available when I checked this evening, which would by rights have contained the editing glitch (Moore’s the pity, for there was a stretch in her market wrap chat with David Halliday where we were treated to some of the most divine smiling responses from the lady to a quip Mr Halliday gave: “there’s not a (Suncorp-Metway’s Patrick) Snowball’s chance in Hell…”; I say again, God help the poor bastard…

After watching this midweek recording I returned to writing in my sanctuary, and it was after dawn when I slipped into the warm soft arms of the jettisoned jewel.



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