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Showing posts from September, 2021

Daylight contributing to covid-19: health bureaucrat.

The sun setting later at night is becoming a concern for lockdown-loving curfew zealots, whose statements are now regularly exceeding even the most wildly satirical excesses of the savagely incisive university comedy revues of the pre-PC 1980s. Example: Canadian (resident in Australia) health bureaucrat Nancy Baxter said (Herald Sun, 28/9), ‘ ... sunset really shouldn’t be setting the timing of the curfew. ... If it’s getting lighter later (sic), one would think there would be more movement. And the whole point of curfew is to reduce movement.’

Crystal fairies dance for freedom.

The coffee machine was dripping its black magic into the cup. Vito was holding the stainless steel frothing jug. He pulled the lever, and I waited for the familiar throaty muffled roar of steam in milk. Instead, the floor shook. Vito's hand froze on the lever. The espresso glasses on top of the machine danced like crystal fairies. Ten eyes instinctively swung to the window.  Where do you look when an earth tremor strikes? There's nothing to see, unless you're really unlucky. There was also nothing to hear, but the shaking makes you think there is noise. There is only noise from damage, and where I was, there was no damage. Just a bunch of jangling coffee glasses. The five people in the cafe went outside. The five were two customers (one being me), and staff Vito, Katerina, and their father Sam (who is in his eighties and still makes the best coffee of all of them). People were looking at the sky. Wrong direction. Others were gazing in the direction of the tramline. Better g

Hysteria by the numbers..

Saturday. The city's public transport system shuts down to thwart lockdown protestors. Earlier in the week the drawbridge comes up on Ballarat, population 100,000, when a covid-19 case is detected. Maybe two. Maybe four. The Australian Capital Territory, where Autralia's bureaucracy lives, is given a further four weeks detention (prefixed - as always - 'at least') in the face of a few dozen infections. Back to Melbourne: photographs of several ultra-orthodox residents of the Balaclava/East St Klda area are repeatedy - meaning across many days - published in newspapers and social media following reports of 'illegal' religious meetings. When the truly insane ban on children playing in playgrounds is reversed the obeisant press prints pictures of smiling adults and children jumping for joy at playgrounds - as if gifted with a privilege - instead of being white-hot angry at the sheer stupidity, cruelty and utter pointlessness of the ban. Today: s man flies into Dar

Sushi rolls: be prepared.

That lazy afternoon, with Blue Juice dying on the radio towards one o'clock, the kitchen table had Sunday written all over it. The wreckage of someone's - or several persons' - late breakfast of maple-syruped pancakes lay almost buried under the outspread weekend newspapers. Yes, newspapers plural. At least three weekend newspapers find their way into this house. The death of the newspaper will not be on my head. I cleaned the table. I like cleaning it. It is a mid-twentieth century original, of smoke-patterned pale green chrome-edged Laminex, over a tubular stainless steel frame that cleverly curves down at each corner into twin chrome legs that stand on the polished timber floor in neat black rubber stoppers, like little socks. It is as quintessentially 1950s as an R-Type Bentley. (And as long-lasting. Every year I see Ikea tables thrown in disgust onto hard rubbish collections, pathetic legs snapped like twigs, and deep scratches in their faux-timber veneers.) I had pre

The Long March of Everyman*: Episode 67,539.

Early Saturday afternoon, about one o'clock. The path led north, hemmed in by a cliff on one side and the creek on the other. Occasionally a ramp or stairway, cut into the hill, cascaded down from a street above and into the valley. Eucalypts scissored the oblique sunlight and I walked on through the flickering kinescope. From my house I had turned west to the corner, north uphill, and east again, to meet the path following the stream’s s-curves. It used to be an undefined dirt trail, then one year the council concreted it and painted a line down the middle with a pedestrian and cyclist symbol. Today - meaning literally today - it was a human superhighway carrying refugees from the torrid hatefulness of their own four walls, moving north and south like somnolent zombies. Floral-masked Brunswick and Coburg hipsters bearing takeaway coffees; family groups with prams and dogs and toddlers wobbling on first bicycles; old people making painful physical progress towards death; joggers, w