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Showing posts from May, 2018

Cold weather food.

It was a mild autumn. Everyone frowns, nods sagely and calls it global warming or climate change, but it used to be known as Indian summer, which was a lot more romantic, but you don't get to talk about starving polar bears and it is also probably racist. Conversation is a minefield these days. No wonder people give up. Either way, it's cold now. Heavy, rich, dense food is back. Let's hit the curry jar. I picked up three capsicums from that fruit shop in Sydney Road that keeps changing its name, the one next to Chemist Warehouse. I took them home and wondered what to do with them. It was a cold day so I thought I'd bake them with something. * This was easy. In a large pot, I fried a chopped onion in oil, then browned 500 grams of beef mince in the same pot. Then I threw in a tablespoon of hot curry powder and stirred it through, added a cup of water, a teaspoon of salt and plenty of pepper. I let it simmer an hour or two and then removed it from the stove to

Half forward flank.

Ha! And you thought only the boys played football. Wrong! Here is Alexandra displaying perfect ball drop (although the dropping arm has swung around a bit too far) and good follow-through. Look out, boys.

Doubting Thomas. Or at least his suits.

The following opening sentence fell out of a writer's keyboard like an overweight sprinter out of the blocks, staggered through its middle em-dashed clause, and then crashed into a non-sequitured ditch, where it lay bleeding until its writer put it out of its misery, by writing the next sentence. Tom Wolfe, who died Monday, was — as even those of us who did not share his politics and often deplored his taste and even doubted the fashion wisdom of all the white suits have to admit — one of the central makers of modern American prose. Let's translate, taking out a couple of 'evens': White suits, unsavoury politics and bad taste aside, he was pretty good at writing. As if the former even matter.

Pride comes before a fall.

The 'big four' face being broken up . Rachel Reeves, chairwoman of the BEIS Committee, said: "The auditors should also be in the dock for this catastrophic crash. "The sorry saga of Carillion is further evidence that the Big Four accountancy firms are prioritising their own profits ahead of good governance at the companies they are supposed to be putting under the microscope. "KMPG, PwC, Deloitte and EY pocket millions of pounds for their lucrative audit work - even when they fail to warn about corporate disasters like Carillion. "It is a parasitical relationship which sees the auditors prosper, regardless of what happens to the companies, employees and investors who rely on their scrutiny." Time the moral arbiters of the age backed off on their PC crusade and turned their 'focus' to core functions.

Four teenage jobs.

1. Age 11: Grade Six incinerator monitor at primary school, 1968 - burning all the rainbow lunch wrap and paper bags from school lunches. Probably my most responsible job ever. 2. Age 14: delivering weekly newspaper to streets south of Essendon airport at 4 a.m. on Thursdays. 3. Age 16: gardener for old Mrs Fleming. She gave me stale cake for morning tea, the poor old dear. I remember being sad for her for some reason. Probably that she had no-one else to share the cake with. Years later, I found out why - she was a ghost . 4. Age 17: salesman at B. V. Menswear in Puckle Street, Moonee Ponds. I sold suits, bowls outfits and hats to the older men, and pastel bodyshirts , flared trousers and check lumberjackets to the younger customers. What were your teenage jobs? Meet any ghosts?

Sign, sign, everywhere a sign/Blockin' out the scenery, breakin' my mind ...

It was the kind of agency that was pompous enough and sanctimonious enough to have inspirational quotes – written by other people, of course – all over its walls. I worked there for a while. You walked in on Monday morning and SMACK, a huge sign behind the reception desk hit you in the eye. It read: The only way of finding the limits of the possible is by going beyond them into the impossible . The MD thought it would intrigue clients so much, they wouldn't notice how long they'd been sitting in reception. I didn't know what it meant either. It was written by Arthur C. Clarke. Science fiction headlining an advertising agency? Perfect. Then you took the long march to the creative department. Along the corridor, they had quotes angled out from the wall on swivel frames so you couldn't miss them. Some underling swivelled them the other way in the afternoon so you would see them on the way out. One of them read: The future depends on what we do in the present. That p

Fast food #3: baked Irish potato and cheese.

A variation on cheese mac and even more delicious. Peel and cook four large potatoes. Mash them with two tablespoons of butter. Now fold through a little milk, two tablespoons of grated cheddar cheese, and a teaspoon of salt. Place the mashed potatoes in a baking dish with a further two tablespoons of cheese on the top. Bake in a hot oven about 10 minutes or until the cheese starts to darken on top. Serve scattered with chopped parsley or spring onions for some crunch to contrast the unctuous texture of the 'pot-mac'. When you are hungry, probably the most satisfying dish on earth. Variation. Crack four eggs (without breaking the yolks) over the top of the cheese and potato before placing the casserole into the oven.

What, not again?

First I lost the lot in Trio back in the GFC. (Good to see the VOFF is still pursuing ASIC and Bill Shorten on that issue.) The authorities managed to find some small bits of cash belonging to victims of Trio/Astarra on an island in the Atlantic or Pacific, or some swamp somewhere. Guess where they put it? AMP . Thanks for nothing.