Child care centres collapse. Now what?

Readers of this blog know very well by now, that through no fault of my own I have to return many faulty items to the place of purchase. While I am at those shopping malls, I have observed two social trends. Continue reading

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Who would want to be a Muslim?

I woke up this morning to the news that all the Jewish hostages at the Chabad House in Mumbai had been murdered by Muslim terrorists.

No doubt there will be Muslims crawling out of the woodwork to claim that Islam is a religion of peace. We have heard it all before. But nobody in the civilised world believes this.

Just look around you at most of the trouble spots in the world and you will see Muslims involved.

Whenever I feel sad, my consolation is that at least I am not a Muslim.

So much for The Wild One

When Marlon Brando roared onto the silver screen on his motor bike in 1953 he became the eponymous sex symbol of the fifties. “The Wild One” sparked the craze for motor bike riding and the unbridled passion that bikers have represented since then.

When you compare the erotic leather jackets, the boots, tattoos, headscarves and beards of bikers with the rather effete yellow and lavender lycra pants of bicycle riders and their extremely sexless bunch of bananas headgear, well, the wild ones win hands down.

So it is with great disappointment that today, according to a study from Japan, we learn that 70% of motor bike riders are having erectile problems because of the vibrations of the engine on which they sit. Some of these sorry sex symbols even suffer from incontinence. Apparently, the motor bike seats are too pointy and this design failure inhibits the production of certain hormones that macho men require.

I guess we will all look at Hell’s Angels in a different way from now on as we shake our heads and mutter “Poor dear.”

Come to think of it, Brando’s voice was a little high. Almost as high as that of jockeys. Don’t they get bounced around as well? And how about those strapping council workers with their jackhammers? It must make their teeth chatter something terrible.

Here we go again exchanging appliances

I swear this has got to be some sort of record! Last Friday we went to the shopping mall to return a slow cooker which had begun to turn slightly green at the bottom of the ceramic insert. This problem miraculously appeared when we came to Melbourne and so I phoned Kambrook to ask them for an explanation.

They thought that it might have to do with the copper connections or the glaze or whatever and would I return it to the place of purchase?

Well, that was music to my ears, because I was now reassured that everything was back to normal since my husband’s bout of peritonitis. We would buy something, do our own quality control tests and then return said or is that sad item to the place of purchase. Don’t you just love that expression? “Place of purchase” sounds so grand. I must admit I’m suitably impressed when I read that on the warranty pamphlet.

So, on Friday we went back to the store and returned the slow cooker. We then decided to spend a little more and buy the Breville Banquet Meal Maker. Yes, it was taking a risk but what the heck? My husband had to have the best chicken soup in the world and this item was the right stuff.

I cooked the meal and then adjusted the setting to “warm” according to the directions. It kept on boiling and gave me pause as to whether this should be the case. There seemed to be no “slow” in the slow cooker but the meal was superb and thoroughly cooked.

Today I decided to make enquiries about the settings so I phoned Breville and asked them whether Keep Warm meant keep boiling at full speed. The lovely man went away to consult with the mavens and came back to ask me whether I still had my docket and would I mind returning the appliance to the place of purchase.

To tell you the truth I do mind. The ruddy thing is heavy but what can I do but keep coming back just like the doomed Flying Dutchman?

The dangers of fertility treatment and “old mothers”

In the sixties women underwent fertility treatment based on gonadotrophins. Some of them became pregnant which made them happy. At the time I was uneasy about interfering with nature but the entire matter was hailed as being the solution for infertility. Decades later, some of those women developed that devastating illness, Creutzfeld Jakob, a variant of mad cow disease.

There is no way that such suffering and death could be considered worthwhile. Continue reading

I miss tasty fruit

Here we are again in the season of summer fruit. I tasted the strawberries and they are not worth eating. I tasted the blueberries and they are bland. The melons aren’t bad but they aren’t good either. Nectarines are awful too. So why is fruit so tasteless? Will we blame everything on the drought when fruit hasn’t been good for more than a decade?

In my opinion, too much emphasis is placed on making fruit look attractive and stay fresh longer but its flavour is disappointing. Last winter I finally gave up on buying mandarines because they were bad. We could blame the citrus blight or whatever it was in Queensland but mandarines have been unappetising way before the latest fiasco.

If I were blindfolded I would have to judge that most fruit tastes like cucumber and that’s okay if you want cucumber, but when you want to enjoy a luscious berry, perhaps you should buy the tinned ones from Canada. That country hasn’t yet managed to sacrifice flavour for profit.

Flowers aren’t as fragrant either. From what I have observed at flower markets, the only ones with perfume are the Oriental Lilies. It’s only a matter of time before lilies lose their perfume too. Sadly, it’s all about appearance in the floral world as well nowadays. When I asked the stall owner at the market why this was happening, I was told that deperfumed flowers last longer.

But if that’s the case then why not buy artificial ones? They look good, last a long time and are equally lacking in perfume. In fact, an enterprising businessman could incorporate a continuous spray that could emanate from the artificial flowers and so you would have the best of both worlds. Isn’t it a pity that I should even be suggesting this!

Compulsory paternity tests

A report has just come out which states that many men have had to support children who aren’t theirs. In December 2007 I wrote that it would be a good idea if there were compulsory paternity tests at birth.

“Fathers” can now demand a paternity test if they have any doubts about the child they are supporting. This matter can be brought to court and those little “ladies” who have been milking men dry will have to repay what they stole from them. This legal action is costly nowadays and if tests were automatic there would be no need for this expenditure.

Just as I have always maintained that men who father children should be responsible for their upkeep, I am adamant that women who defraud a man in that way are no better than common criminals. They should at least repay the money and perhaps have a conviction of fraud awarded against them.

What sort of a woman is it who doesn’t know who fathered her child? Say no more. And if such a female has several children by different fathers she could just sit back and let everyone else pay for her follies. It seems so unfair to me.

There is no excuse nowadays for bringing an unwanted child into the world. Not with the availability of contraception. And if the woman belongs to a religion that forbids contraception, she is still breaking a cardinal rule by having sex outside marriage. She can’t have it both ways- be against contraception while being sexually irresponsible.

Anyway, I actually don’t care what that kind of woman does, but I do care for the poor children who result from her behaviour. These unfortunates need to be supported financially and it is the duty of the biological father to help out.

That is why I am all for paternity tests at birth. If every child has one then there will be no stigma attached to the procedure. An added bonus of this testing is that there will not be any mix-ups about wrong babies being taken home. That’s assuming that the mother can remember the name of the fellow she slept with.