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Friday, February 26, 2010

TROYES: "Cooeee! Every day in every way I'm getting better and better!" yodels Payton L. Inkletter, earnestly trying to harness his tardy subconscious

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:
'In other news…'
26th February 2010

Friday: Another day of stifling heat, a mere 40 something Celsius, but I was trying to sleep for the majority of it, feeling so much worse energy-wise than usual, and that's saying something. It happened to be mid morning or so before I actually got to bed.

And not before managing to read a couple of postings at The Punch, and posting a comment on one, Leigh Sales' 'Well readhead' column, today's subject title: 'Avatar, Dylan and Monty Python suck': I was struck a tad by her courage in declaring her dislike of and/or nonchalance towards several monuments of widespread public adoration, even including the purported good looks of Brad Pitt and the watchability of Lord of the Rings; she certainly drew some agitated commentators out of the jungle; good on her I say, while not sharing all of her dislikes. And I am indebted to her for the link she listed to a cat playing the piano: Janny and I loved it, despite knowing it had to be somewhat contrived; for myself, I was won the moment I discovered that it included two of my great loves: pussy and tickled ivories.

While Ms Sales displayed courage in her post, I felt Carrie Miller was somewhat attention seeking in her post 'Home ownership is a trick being played on you': if so, she also succeeded judging by the comments her post elicited.

I surfaced close to seven in the evening, and joined The Dear Leader and The Dear Missus for tuck tuck in front of My Beloved and Stateline. The Dear Missus drove The Dear Leader home after this, and I was so exhausted I vegetated in front of Aunty and SBS (Hitler's Bodyguard – the third episode I've caught so far) all night, finally finishing with The Graham Norton Show, on which Dame Shirley Bassey sang, proving she's still got it and then some: Janny and I had a rare musical agreement by rating her performance singing The Girl From Tiger Bay as wonderful; bearing in mind that the dame was a whisker short of 73 at this rendition. Do take a look at the video of her effort here, and watch for the teddy bear on her acoustic guitarist's guitar.

Buried in the middle of all this was Lateline: The (Leigh) Sales Graph: this lady looks so good when outfitting herself in the simplest of garb, and tonight was proof if needed. Ms Sales chose a blue shaded long sleeved blouse, no jewellery but for diminutive earrings, and a slightly flaired hairstyle; fabulous, feminine, faultless. Her interlocutors of old for tonight's Canberra weekly Friday night fight club were George Brandis and Craig Emerson, both in a word looking dapper, in two words, decidedly dapper, back to one word, crisp, and who early on got quite animated with each other, but Ms Sales took it in her stride.

Of course the pollies were as predictable tonight as a Methodist minister at someone else's Sunday roast, with Mr Emerson doing his best to force rose coloured glasses on the listeners regarding the insulation program debacle, and Mr Brandis doing his best to paint it as the worst example of poor leadership and government in the history of the world. Clearly, however, Labor has burnt itself badly over this shambles, but I did note that Tony Jones' guest the other night on Lateline, Australian Industry Group's Heather Ridout, stressed the salient point, to her credit, that '…I find it really very distressing that employers have played fast and loose with the lives of employees, apparently through this scheme. We take a very dim view of it. And that worries me.

I mean, it's all very well to shift the blame to politicians, but as an employer you have a duty of care to your employees and I feel that very, very strongly. And it's a major ethic and value in our organisation, among our membership.

And I can say to you when there is a death in a company that's a member of ours, it's a shattering thing. It is a shattering thing, culturally. It hurts the whole organisation. And in many cases, it costs millions of dollars in lost time in industry as well. So OH&S is the number one top issue in our agenda.'

Hear, hear! Ms Ridout.

The good natured ease with which Ms Sales handled the childishness of these two pollies tonight was approaching a revelation, not quite a revelation, but somewhat inspired: she managed to overtalk them when necessary, yet gave them enough rope to hang themselves, all the while keeping the vibe rather light hearted: WELL BLOODY DONE I say.

Now this was all just the filler for my highlight of the week: The (Stephen) Long and Short of It: Stephen Long began by giving us almost three seconds of his inimitable idiosyncratically lovable smile, and as far as I'm concerned he'd won me over regardless of whatever he chose to say after that: but as always, the man proved yet again that he is a font of economically analytical wisdom, this time on the Greek sovereign debt crisis.

Mr Long is spot on regarding the ominous possibilites: 'Well, the worst case scenario is that possibility of a contagious sovereign debt crisis resulting in a new wave of the global credit crash and the global financial crisis. The other prospect realistically more likely is that because you've got this terrible dilemma for highly indebted nations, particularly in Europe, that they're now under enormous pressure to cut their public spending. But it's public spending that's been keeping the economies ticking over and a lot of these countries are still in recession, so there could be a serious double-dip recession and a decoupling of Europe, or possibly at best stagnant growth, tepid growth. So, whatever way you look at it, it doesn't look too good.'

And if there is to be a domino effect, one result in my opinion will be an acceleration of even greater concentration of economic power into Germany's hands, already the nation within the EU with the most power, and such will become a mighty mixed blessing: recent history demonstrates this nation's lethal impatience with pussyfooting with irritations from elsewhere, perceived and actual, genuine and contrived.

If it were possible, Ms Sales glow increased when she introduced Mr Long for this chattus economicus, and their charming chemistry was as good as it's ever been. I only wish two things: that this pair could speak for longer, and every week night. And yes, Mr Long's Mum had tousled his curly mop again, just so that she could kiss it back into shape.

And so then, after enjoying the following very lively and good natured Graham Norton and the incomparable Shirley Bassey, I was falling asleep at this stage, unable to stay awake for Letterman, so, breaking a promise to Sidrah and the tooth fairy, I joined the fickle femme fatale in the cot without flossing, brushing, and gargling, about midnight.

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