The joy of the football final in Melbourne

It was marvellous on Saturday. The football final was on and everyone in Melbourne was watching the match. Or so it seemed when we set out on our drive to Chadstone Shopping Mall. I had never seen the roads so empty. They reminded me of that film “The Mouse that Roared” in which the world’s smallest nation, the Grand Duchy of Fenwick, decides to invade the U.S.A. and be defeated in the hope of receiving compensation from the wealthiest nation in the world.

The Fenwickians are unfortunate in that they invade the U.S.A. on a day when all Americans are taking part in a nuclear war drill and so the streets are totally empty. There is nobody around to accept their surrender and so the invasion is a financial defeat.

Well, that’s exactly how Melbourne looked on Saturday. Melburnians were hunkered down in shelters in front of their plasmas and the Fenwickians could do their worst. Melbourne just didn’t give a damn.

What bliss! I drove calmly along deserted main roads. There were parking spots galore at the Chadstone complex. When we entered the Mall we could actually see where we were walking instead of being pushed and jostled by the Proletariat.

We strolled and rambled and took in the sights. Football time and the shoppin’ is easy…Fish are jumpin’ and the cotton is high… I couldn’t help it. I warbled cheerfully as we shopped.

I often think that the world would be a wonderful place if it weren’t for the people in it. Which reminds me of a conversation we had with some friends who love exotic travel. They told us we must go to Borneo to see the Orangutans. Apparently, one journeys into the jungle and then is placed in a cage. Before too long curious Orangutans come out of hiding to have a peek at the visitors. The irony of it all was lost on the narrators.

On reflection, however, considering the demeanour of human beings, I think that it’s as it should be. I can envisage cruise ships full of Orangutans coming to observe us in our natural habitats. The antics of football fans should guarantee a few chuckles among our primate cousins. Go the Pussycats!!!

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R.I.P Christian Rossiter

The quadriplegic who was at the centre of a right-to-die controversy recently has passed away. Christian Rossiter died of a chest infection after winning the right not to be fed artificially.

Mr Rossiter was only 49 and could not bear the thought of spending the rest of his life on life support.

Sadly, we don’t have a choice in when we are born and who will be our parents. I believe the ultimate freedom is the right to decide when we will die and how, if that can be arranged. That is what I call real self-determination.

It’s a shame that Mr Rossiter had to fight to starve to death and finally succumbed to a chest infection. It could not have been an easy death for him, but then, his life was intolerable. Too bad he could not have had any compassionate and actual medical assistance to depart with relief.

Perhaps one day we will give the same consideration to human beings as we do to our beloved pets.

President Carter gets it wrong as usual

I was having a quiet break from blogging when President Carter came out with more drivel. This time it was about people objecting to President Obama’s policies because of racism. According to the nutty farmer who was one of the worst presidents ever, people disapprove of Obama because he is black. What a load of rubbish! Why can’t someone disagree with Obama without being labeled a racist?

In my opinion, Obama’s election was due in part to his being black. Not too black, but a nice latte blend of black and white which was an attraction at a time when Americans wanted change. Not only in political party but as different as possible from the white Republicans of the past. So Obama fit the bill perfectly.

On balance, Obama’s colour was a plus rather than a disadvantage and still is in the eyes of the Europeans and the Middle Easterners. This is an important point since the Democrats want to distance themselves from the previous administration and Obama’s physical appearance is now a symbol of change in both policy and provenance.

Of course, there are racists in America just as there are racists in the rest of the world, and there always will be. But Carter is barking up the wrong tree if he accuses critics of Obama’s initiatives of being racist. That is just a cheap shot and, as usual, Carter is way off the mark.

Tim Holding a potential Darwin Award recipient

Just when you thought that our intrepid Minister for Hâ‚‚0 couldn’t embarrass himself more than he already has, Tim Holding admitted that after slipping down a mountain for 200 metres, he was offered help from passing mountain climbers, BUT refused. These climbers wanted to lend him some snow shoes.

Not for him a beacon and other mandatory safety precautions for solitary adventurers. He was going to do it his way.

What is his way? Well, may you ask. His way is to go alone, lose his footing when he became confused, refuse sensible offers of help from other trekkers and then risk the lives of 80 rescuers.

Some adventurer! If it weren’t for the efforts of the Australian Federal Police who used a special plane to seek him out, he would still be there freezing his butt off. When asked if he would go a wanderin’ up a mountain in below freezing temperatures again, he said yes, but he would take a safety beacon with him next time.

Of course he would have to take lessons on how to switch it on, no doubt. It was noted that he did not even suggest making a donation to the rescue mission.

Do we really need politicians who are so inconsequential and are willing to risk the lives of others just because their brains originated in a pickle jar?

Tim Holding, Minister for Stupidity gets lost in the snow

I have to confess that I didn’t even know that Tim Holding existed until he got lost on a solitary climb up a mountain in the alpine region of Victoria this weekend. Apparently, the wandering minister is Minister for Water in the Australian state of Victoria.

We don’t have much water in Victoria and we don’t have much of a minister either, it appears.

Holding is an experienced mountain climber, we are told, but he went off on his own in below freezing temperatures without a GPS device. I would have thought that a GPS device was crucial if you are into frolicking on dangerous terrains on your own.

Holding seems to have become lost and failed to return on Sunday afternoon. So now we are endangering the lives of 80 rescuers who also have to spend the nights on the mountain in order to retrieve the lost minister.

It’s an expensive and dangerous exercise. We have had irresponsible people go adventuring before and when they were lucky enough to be found they sold their stories to newspapers. I hope that our errant minister will not do that.

I also strongly believe that adventurers should repay the cost of their rescue by taking out insurance before they embark on their follies. Why should their behaviour incur a cost to the community when they didn’t take sensible precautions in the first place?

Accidents are one thing and they are bound to happen but irresponsibility is another. If Tim Holding is found alive I hope that the voters will remember his stupid, risky and inconsequential behaviour when election time comes.

p.s.

Tim Holding is a very lucky man. He has just been winched to safety by courageous rescuers. Hope he gets sent to his room without dessert!