I buy a MacBook Air…

It’s possible that life was becoming somewhat too bright. The sun was making a shaky attempt to shine through the clouds. Birds twittered excitedly in the fecund branches. Fluffy white clouds floated serenely in an azure sky and I was becoming comfortable with things in general. Well, more or less.

Such a sorry state of affairs could definitely not go on. I would have to louse things up for sure. So I decided to go to the Apple Store and investigate the possibility of buying a MacBook Air computer.

Most computer experts like moi would, no doubt, be familiar with the insides of an Apple Store. A large but crowded place filled with teenagers in blue T-shirts, a sort of kindergarten for nerds, one of whom you summon by pressing a key on an iPad. You are then informed that you are next in line for service.

Presently, a beaming Matt or Hamish welcomes you to Apple World and offers to help.

Where do I start? Do I know what I want? Not really. Well, yes, of course, I’m thinking about getting a new computer or an iPad or…I really don’t know.

Why don’t you show me what there is?

Hard to describe the expression of joy on Matt or Hamish’s face. Because it wasn’t there. I felt sorry for him. This was going to be a long night.

The store was crowded and hot. Everybody was talking loudly and I could barely understand what M or H was saying to me. I looked around for a white flag to wave and a cry for HELP flashed silently in my frazzled brain.

What did I want from a computer? Well, I just want to be able to use it with as little fuss as possible.

Simple simple simple. No gimmicks, no creating my own memoirs of trips to Antarctica replete with pixies of penguins. I just want to surf the net, look up info, catch up on world news and do a little writing on my blog.

As I said, very simple, very basic.

The drone of voices in the shop sounded like a rattling train crashing through an ancient Roman tunnel. Apparently there were a million amazing apps I could buy. This computer would do cartwheels. I desperately wanted to press the ESC key or the FORCE QUIT key and leave the building.

Dear Reader, I took the MacBook Air home. Apparently, in the midst of all the racket I agreed to buy it.

This thing has no mouse. I am now having to caress the pad with three fingers or two or press hard in a certain way. I cajole the damn thing and titillate it with occasional success. But hey, isn’t that the way with most things in life?

You tickle this and fiddle with that and hope for the best. Sometimes you end up in the wrong place and have to start again.

And just when you think that you’ve got the hang of things you decide to try something new.

And that’s when the troubles begin all over again.

Raped and then accused of being racist

What is the world coming to when an alleged rape victim can’t call the alleged rapist “a black bastard”?

Apparently, according to political correctness she should have referred to him as the footballer of indigenous appearance who raped her when she was in no position to defend herself.

My ears pricked up when I heard that the alleged rapist’s barrister, David Grace QC accused the woman of being racist. How low can you stoop when you have to turn your client, Andrew Lovett, into some sort of victim of racism?

Lovett’s barrister, David Grace, kept on hammering her with:- “you didn’t want to have sex with an Aboriginal man, did you?” The woman replied that she didn’t want to have sex with anybody.

Now I don’t know whether there was a rape or not. It’s up to the law to decide. But I am utterly fed up with the outrageous demands of political correctness that is pervading our society. How can such limitation on freedom of expression be tolerated?

If Andrew Lovett is guilty of rape then he is a bastard. And if he is black, which he is, then he is black. So be it. What is wrong with being black, anyway? Methinks the barrister’s own prejudice is evident here.

On the other hand, if you don’t have much of a defence why not concoct a race issue?

Anyway, let’s say that the alleged victim is a racist, does that mean that it’s okay to rape her?

Let’s stick to the matters at hand. This is a rape trial and should be treated as such.

p.s Latest news about the trial. Verdict on 26th July. Lovett found not guilty.
p.p.s. Lovett is now being investigated on another rape charge.

Congratulations to the Suzanne Grae stores

I’m back to being a fan of the Suzanne Grae fashion stores. It’s been an on again off again relationship since 2001. I used to love them. Then I hated them and now I love them again.

I couldn’t stand their trailer trash period which lasted for several sad years and so gave them a miss.

In 2009 they had announced that they would change what they were selling, but I wasn’t convinced enough to shop there.

A couple of weeks ago, however, I ventured into one of their stores and was pleasantly surprised by what they had on offer. It was the Suzanne Grae store that I had missed for too long.

They had come back to offering interesting items that mixed and matched perfectly with a trendy flair. Casual and easy to wear, the clothes are smart and appealing. I bought four items and then went back the following week and bought one more.

What I also appreciate is their policy of exchanging a purchase after one month if you are not perfectly happy with it. I can’t imagine that many people would take advantage of such a policy but it’s good to know that after sales service is not forgotten.

In 2008 I gave Suzanne Grae a real drubbing because they had gone downhill, in my opinion. Now I’m only too happy to sing their praises again.

I must declare that I have no connection with these stores apart from being a consumer who can feel quite fed up with the rather moronic trends that everyone seems to follow in the manner of lemmings.

Oops there goes another faux fur vest. How original!

I enjoy combining separates in my own way. No fluro colours to distract from my rather lively personality. It’s how I like to be. The choice at Suzanne Grae allows me to wear the clothes rather than the clothes wearing me. Let’s hope this welcome change lasts…

So 60% of Australian voters want Kevin Rudd back as PM

Isn’t it amazing how quickly people forget! Kevin Rudd was a hopeless Prime Minister who couldn’t get on with his ministers and his staff. He was a tyrant who refused to listen to caucus. He was a one man band, a law unto himself and his main ambition was to use the Prime Ministership position to inveigle himself into the post of Secretary-General of the UN.

So why do the Aussies suddenly want him back?

The answer is quite simple. The public has realised that the current Prime Minister is even worse in many ways. She has the foolish habit of announcing policies before they have been assessed. She even announces policies which are up in the air under the misapprehension that announcing the policy is a done deed. It’s been announced, therefore it exists.

For example, take the Malaysian solution for our boat people problem. It had not even been finalised when she jumped in, mouth open, and put her foot in it. The Malays had not yet agreed and yet she put herself and Australia in a weakened position for the negotiations. She would have to agree to anything the Malaysian government demanded because they now had the upper hand. Now that’s pretty stupid.

So why did she do this? Well, it’s because she is desperate. She has Kevin Rudd as a nemesis, ready to pounce. He must be gloating every time she makes a big mistake.

We have now witnessed her terrible handling of the live cattle fiasco. She has managed to put a hold on a thriving export industry when all she had to do was to reserve the export of live cattle to abattoirs that were humane.

It’s all because of desperation. She simply does not think things through. She reacts in a knee-jerk way like a person who is out of control.

The public have become thoroughly sick and tired of her and in fact, the more she appears on TV the less people like her.

If she wants to appeal to the public then she should make herself scarce. That’s what Kevin Rudd did by avoiding Australia.

Apparently, absence makes the heart grow fonder when it comes to politicians and the ordinary public is very forgetful. When Rudd is flying around the planet bringing joy to other climes, they begin to wonder if he really was as bad as all that.

Yes, he is that bad and it didn’t take long before he gave an interview this week in which he told everyone to “pop a Mogadon”. Not a wise bit of advice, is it? What a patronising creep he is and a drug pusher to boot…

Pay up for your own funeral or else!

You can’t switch on the television nowadays without being bombarded by ads telling you that you should take out a funeral policy. Either you sign up for payments until you die or else you can pay for a funeral today so that your heirs don’t have to fork out some money to bury you.

The message here is that you don’t want to be a burden to your children after death. So not only do you have to support them while they are growing up and often when they are all grown, but if you love the poor dears, then you will save them the expense of paying for your departure. In other words, the responsibility is all on your side.

Apparently, it is not enough that they will inherit the family estate, meaning your money. You have to facilitate everything for them by depriving yourself of money while you are still alive so that they can inherit absolutely everything.

These ads must be working or those companies would not continue advertising all the time.

So what does this say about today’s society?

Well, it says several things. First of all, that parents do not actually trust that the children will provide a decent burial for them. Secondly, that older people have been subjected to guilt trips about being a burden on society. The ads concentrate on guilt and even parental love when it’s really all about Money.

Thirdly, that there is a feeling of entitlement among the younger generation. They want it all, they want it now and they don’t want to share. The least we can do is to get out of their way and we should pay for the fare out of this world ourselves.

Seems to me that there is something very satisfying about reverse mortgages. Perhaps the crocodile tears would turn into genuine ones when the will is read.

Another day another Aussie soldier killed in Afghanistan

The Prime Minister of Australia, Julia Gillard, today said that we are in Afghanistan for the long haul in spite of having lost another of our soldiers. She says that we are having great success in getting rid of terrorists and that all these deaths of our soldiers are worth the sacrifice. Why? Well , because we will prevent the terrorists from establishing themselves in that country. Go ahead, Julia, tell that to their grieving families.

How can anyone believe this propaganda? As soon as we call it quits, and we must inevitably leave one day, the Taliban or whoever else is ambitious there will creep back in, raise their ugly heads and cheer as the infidels retreat.

I read today that five U.S soldiers were killed in Iraq. This is a fiasco. The only people who can get rid of terrorists in Iraq or Afghanistan are the locals themselves. It seems to me that if some of those Afghan soldiers are actually shooting our soldiers, we are not very welcome there.

This is a lost cause. Let us not add to it with further losses of our brave young men and women.

Twenty-six Australian soldiers killed in Afghanistan…and counting!

Today two more Aussie soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan. One of them was killed by an Afghan soldier he was mentoring. What a sick joke this is!

So far 26 of our soldiers have been sacrificed in a war that cannot be won. Nor is it worth it. We should leave Afghanistan immediately because the cause is a waste of time. Even if we are successful, what does success mean?

There will always be Taliban types in that part of the world. These people are totally tribal and don’t really want to change the way they live. We should leave them to their fate.

And if we think that 26 are too many then how must the Americans feel when they have lost thousands, not to mention the poor invalided ones (157 Aussies wounded) whose lives will always be blighted?

I weep for them all.

Wasting U.S lives and money in Afghanistan

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not an expert on international affairs, but I do understand the realities of life.

What has finally prompted me to write again is the devastation that I have been watching on TV. The Midwest and the South in the U.S are being flooded. On top of that there have been tornadoes that have killed over one hundred people as well as destroying entire towns. Many people are still missing.

My heart goes out to those people who will need fathomless aid to rebuild their lives.

Quite simply, they will need lots of cash. And it’s up to the government to supply it to them.

I understand that money is a finite resource and that the U.S has just suffered from the GFC. Indeed, it is still trying to recover from it.

At the same time it keeps on spending billions on a futile war in Afghanistan. It is wasting money trying to win over hearts and minds among the local population of Afghanistan. Meanwhile, American and our Australian soldiers are returning home in body bags.

For what? Is it worth it? Will it prevent further terrorist attacks against us? I seriously doubt it. Vigilant intelligence is better than body bags.

Why should the U.S have to sacrifice itself in the hope of bringing civilisation to those parts of the world which are still living under some primitive code? It’s not as if these countries are going to be grateful to the U.S and its allies. They hate our guts. Blowing us up is not a Welcome Mat.

Don’t the U.S states such as Missouri, Minneapolis and Oklahoma which are suffering all these catastrophes deserve help from their own government? And how about the victims of Hurricane Katrina who are still waiting to come home?

I’ve heard the saying that charity begins at home, but in my opinion, taking care of your own people is not charity. It is the primary duty of all governments. That is why they are elected.

Why tree changes for retirees are not a good idea

I haven’t written for a whole month because my friend’s husband was seriously ill and I was very distressed at their plight. She and her husband had been living in a small Australian town, population 3000. They both loved country life. Neither of them wanted to return to the big smoke.

But he became ill as older people do. His knees gave out and he had to wait a year to have a replacement. Once that was done, there were the melanomas followed by all sorts of horrid symptoms.

This bush town has only one doctor who is not popular with the residents so that some choose to travel to the next town for medical attention.

Specialist treatment is unavailable and my friend had to go to a medical centre, three hours drive away or Sydney (6 hours) for surgery for his melanomas. The waiting list is long and something went terrible wrong for my friend’s husband.

He stopped talking, he couldn’t hear, his body was covered in all sorts of weeping lesions. My friend begged the local GP to visit her husband but this fellow refused to come unless the patient requested it personally.

It was going to take months before the dermatologist could see him. Finally, he was driven to Sydney by his desperate family. The medicos admitted him immediately and wondered why it had taken so long for him to get proper attention.

He lingered for six long weeks at St Vincent’s Hospital and then he died. There is an autopsy going on right now.

I have no idea why the poor man died but a major contributing factor was the handicap that he lived in the bush. Away from proper medical treatment, a victim of the long waiting list in the N.S.W hospital system.

My friend and her husband dreamed of retiring happily in the country. They were tree changers but the country is no country for old men.

The experts on nuclear dangers are crawling out of the woodwork.

As if reports about the potential threat of a nuclear meltdown in Japan aren’t enough to drive me to despair, enter The Experts.

Every news bulletin unearths its own expert on the situation at Fukushima. He is usually from some obscure university such as the School of Miscellaneous Panic Studies in Antarctica. The interviewer asks him for his considered opinion based on his considerable knowledge of nuclear power only to hear:- “Well, it’s too soon to tell.”

The desperate interviewer prods Dr Mumbles for an atom of information, a sound byte perhaps? but no, the expert pleads ambivalence. “We don’t have enough information as yet,” he explains. “I would be loathe to predict the outcome of this situation.”

“But the situation looks pretty grim, doesn’t it, Dr Mumbles?” prods the interviewer.

“Well, yes… and no, although it’s too soon to tell,” Dr Mumbles responds. “It all depends on…”

“Thank you, Dr Mumbles,” interrupts the interviewer before going back to shots of the steaming nuclear reactor.

“That was Dr Mortimer Mumbles from the University of Antarctica expressing concern over the extremely grim situation at Fukushima.”

What was all that about? I ask myself. They could have interviewed me, and I would have said “Dunno, but it ain’t lookin’ good.” But I wasn’t asked because I don’t have the cachet, the info, the insight, the expertise. My dunno would lack credibility, I guess. However, it is comforting to know that I’m not alone.