Gift Giving for the Bewildered

The Pub is proud to present another cautionary festive season tale by Currer Bell our strictly anonymous Guest Author. The final excerpt from Bah Humbug! A Survivor’s Guide to End of Year Festivities will be published next week …

(Photo: Courtney House)

Here are some helpful hints which I have called Gift Giving for the Bewildered. That applies to most of us, as inspiration is in short supply at this time of year.

Men generally want to please the women in their life, which makes them the perfect target for hard-selling sales people. Those who assure them’ she’ll love this,’ about everything imaginable, from a wok to a camper van and accessories. So, do the guys a favour. Leave out catalogues or magazines with items you would like circled in bold marker pen and tell them that you have done so. With a bit of luck, you might get something you want and can use. Then your cries of pleasure will be genuinely meant, while the man in your life will have bought something that you actually wanted.

(Photo: Organic Natural Gift Guide)

Please don’t give the men in your life the usual socks and jocks which they have come to expect. Think more imaginatively. Of course you should have been listening for clues all year for those items they moan they need and have not got, but it’s not too late. Think experience – a plane flight, a brewery tour, a home brewing class, a paint balling session. Think fun, whatever their kind of fun is – concert tickets, footy tickets, Harley ride, hot air ballooning. Even think practical if you must, and buy the screwdriver set they wanted, or the more expensive version of a faithful old saw, or drill. Mr Practical will be delighted.

(Photo: Wikipedia)

Finally, this may be the year to deal with Old Uncle Killjoy. You know whom I mean – the relative who always moans about the commercialisation of the festive season and vows he doesn’t want any presents. Alright then, this year OUK gets nothing – not even a carefully-wrapped toothpick. Almost certainly OUK will spend most of the day weeping quietly in some secluded spot, but he will learn his lesson and will never EVER misbehave again.

(Photo: Washington University Political Review)

With confidence and some forward planning, the festive season can be fun for everybody and that includes the harassed woman who is usually at the centre of it. Absorb your seasonal lessons, what went wrong this year, and what went right. Plan to have an even better time next year. Oh, and a quick reminder – and never decorate your Christmas tree twice.

(Photo: HunterxColleen)

495 thoughts on “Gift Giving for the Bewildered

  1. It’s often true though that if the husband does something bad, the wife cops it too, and vice versa. The public then blame both. Quite unfair.

  2. BB
    Women have lived with serial killers and never known what their partner was doing. Also I wonder if she had the surname ‘Smith’ instead of ‘Achmed’, whether people would have less hate.

  3. Leone that Samantha Maiden article had this paragraph

    Mission Australia’s Toby Hall has argued that the majority of people with significant mental health problems could return to work with the right help.

    Now wasn’t Toby Hall appointment to Mission Australia a surprise appointment given one would expect a more social justice background. Mission Australia’s board is full of well connected entitled people who have latched onto an unregulated gold mine.

    By the time Toby Hall was 21, he was earning more than his parents’ combined income. As an accountant with top-tier investment bank, Salomon Brothers in London, Hall lived the high life for almost a decade during most of the “greed-is-good” 1980s.

    The front page of yesterdays Age said that Kevin Andrews was going to disband the body that oversees charities. It pointed out that World Vision’s Tim Costello’s income was $200K in 2012. That might sound acceptable to people on secret squirrel salary packages but it makes people who don’t earn a tenth that less likely to donate.

    I am very critical of the accountability of the organisations that sprung up to fill the role vacated by the Commonwealth Employment Service. These organisations are set up as ‘not for profits’ so their workers are not subject to the same tax arrangements as ’employees’. There is limited accountability of their effectiveness and I am aware that one organisation provides employment for the in-house lawyer rather than the putative clients.

    I am wondering whether the boards of charities isn’t the last refuge of rogues.

    There have been complaints from the environment sector that the Waubra Foundation has charitable status yet genuine environmental charities have had their applications for charity status declined

  4. billie
    I won’t start on what I think of Mission Australia. Just let me say they are a money-hungry pack of hyenas who grab the government funding and then do bugger all to help those in their care, or living in the housing they ‘administer’ on behalfof the NSW government.

    I’d love to see Toby Hall return to work while battling mental illness. Even a cushy job like his that involves little more than sitting in an office drinking coffee and swanning around for the media would be impossible.

  5. “…brutalised by someone professing to be a Christian here’

    Surely Piles wasn’t talking about TIBM there. Surely not.

  6. I feel for those who rely upon Newstart or Disability Allowances. It is ugly to demonise people for Labour Market failure to provide full employment. In an environment where there are always 7 qualified applicants for every job vacancy filled there is clearly a vast pool of unemployed, who keep wage demands low

  7. when we hear about the age of entitlement being over and some such from politicians and the MSM- they never think /suggest that they are overpaid- and should be salary sacrificing. The ABC aka- Abbott Broadcasting Company(- despite claims of Left wing bias)-seems particularly over populated with a certain type of self satisfied pontificator. who then crosses to another of their ilk for a repeat of a previous comment..ABC24 has about 2% market share-ABC itself rarely manages 11%. These days I watch less and less TV and the ABC used to be my first choice.
    How can these well paid people reflect the concerns of the ordinary people on ordinary salaries or wages, not the inflated pay they seem to get.

  8. A couple of “Journo’ Cameos” I posted a while back on TPS….some of you may hace seen them, but , well…just for amusement!…

    Journo’ cameos #3.
    In another life, Annabell would wince at the term ; “Bondi Bouffant”, as it was one of those hair-perms that she considered an essential part of the ” Entrata Spettacolosa!”..and was nothing to be sneered at!..Annabell kept a ‘cache’ of foreign words ready for that certain moment when a “drop of that vital essense of mystique” was required…she treasures the memory when, on the opening night of the film ; “Roman Holiday”, fully decked out in a gown of white French organza, splashed with scattered clumps of crimson cherries woven with their leaves, in what she would call her ; ” haute couture of conquest!” she swept into the foyer of the Woy Woy Odeon picture theatre hatted like an exotic tropical bird of paradise and greeted all her open-mouthed friends with a flamboyant ; “Caio everybody!”….that was Annabell !
    And anyway…HER variation of the Bondi Bouffant was created after many long nights and many failures, until she switched products from “Toni” to “Richard Hudnut” home perm….it was the “lanolin waving lotion” that did it! and the rest, as they say in the small town of West Wyalong ; “is what you make of it”. No-one..could “bouffant” like ” ‘bell th’ gurl” as the locals would often say.
    Annabell had but two regrets in her life, one was that she didn’t stay in the big provincial town of her district, where she is certain she could’ve made a successful business of a ladies hair dressing salon…a friend suggested a name for it in keeping with Annabell’s fifties themes..; “Period Piece”…the play being on ; the time-line and a hair-piece…get it?…but Annabell was too saavy a wordsmith to fall for that ‘faux pas’ and instead she moved to the big smoke and became a shipping clerk for a transport company. Her second regret was that she wasn’t born earlier so she could become like her…! a call from downstairs!..”Coming mo…” she pulled herself up…she realised she almost shouted ; “mother” !…THAT would have been a Freudian slip for sure..”Coming ; kids “! , she quickly corrected herself.
    Journo’ cameos #4
    Bazza swilled the ice-cube around the bottom of the tumbler in the dregs of the scotch whisky….he was a bit piqued that his favourite barman ; Ron, wasn’t taking him seriously…”no-one takes me seriously anymore” he thought. “You see, Ron..I’ve thought about it..It’s the name..: Bazza !”….Ron was really too busy polishing glasses to be concerned…it was the latest ‘Barryism” in a long line..”What’s wrong with ; Bazza?” he sighed. Barry continued ; “Well…it’s a “slogan name” isn’t it?….you know, someone enters the room spots you, stops and in an exaggerated way “pistol-fingers” you with both hands and shouts so the whole room hears..; “BAZZZAH !” like they’ve just had a eureka moment…how’s that make a bloke feel?”…….there was a depth of silence…”It’s like you gotta jump off your stool, face them arms and legs spread like a 96 lb. weakling full-back trying to block a Jonah Lomu charge single handed !” In truth, Barry lamented his fate..He had the perfect situation, he had a captive audience, yet no matter how he pressed his point of view on a topical situation, they just didn’t seem to take any notice of him!
    “I can’t understand it , Ron…the other day f’rinstance..I had Barnaby in the “big chair”, and I was asking him about all these Chinese buying our agricultural land and all he could do was to tell me Irish jokes!…they just don’t take me seriously any more!” ..finally Ron had enough, he put the cloth down, the glass on the bar and looked Bazza direct in the eyes…
    “Bazz…you’re a barber, not Parkinson…people come to you for a haircut, not a grilling on the economy..just do your job, charge your fee and be happy!”….Bazz blinked a couple of times, but Ron could see it was a wasted effort…the lights were on but nobody was home.
    “Glad you reminded me, Ron…quick, give us another shot of that scotch..I got Tony in the chair this afternoon for a short back and sides…I wanna have a steady hand with the cut-throat !”

  9. Something doesn’t quite tally here:

    Swann proved a handy lower-order batsman for England at the Test level, posting five centuries – including a highest score of 85

  10. I was breathalyzed for the first time in years last night, coming home from a pizza dinner.

    There they were, red and blue lights flashing, in their boots and baseball caps, their pants tucked into the top of their footwear, sexy looking microphones hanging off their chests, and of course those Glocks always excite a thrill in this domesticated man’s heart. There’s a feeling akin to being in the Wild West when you see a young 20-something guy with a loaded, nasty, black killing machine on his hip.

    The torch was shone in the window at the two teenage boys in the back seat. I must admit I’m not up on seat belt rules and regulations, and just assumed that whatever was provided with the car was in compliance with the law, as long as the belt was done up.

    The smaller of the two boys was in the middle of the seat, wearing just a lap belt (the center appliance of three). The copper, after requesting my licence to peruse, asked, “Is that just a sash belt you’re wearing?”

    I answered, “I dunno. It’s lap-sash isn’t it?”

    “I didn’t mean you, SIR. I meant HIM.”

    We’d gotten off to a bad start.

    I asked him whether there was something illegal about what the kid was wearing. He told me it just wasn’t a great idea when there was a full belt available.

    I think I said something like, “If it’s not illegal, what are you worried about?”

    Bad move. He had put me down as a trouble-maker.

    “Had anything to drink tonight, SIR?”

    “Yes, I have. A glass of wine or two with pizza.”

    “How many, SIR?”

    “I lost count. Not many. Anyway, we’ll find out soon enough, won’t we, OFFICER?”

    HI at this stage punched me in the thigh.

    “Just count to five, SIR,” he offered, presenting the breathalyzer.

    The last time I was tested you had to fill your lungs and keep blowing into a disposable straw, until you were nearly out of breath. This was some new-fangled method. Clearly more sensitive.

    “Where do I talk?”

    “Into the machine, SIR.”

    “I can’t see it. Where’s the straw? Can you shine your torch?”

    “Just count to five, SIR.”

    “Yeah, but WHERE? In which direction?” (another punch to the thigh).

    “Right in HERE, SIR.”

    “Oh,there…. one, two, three, four, five…”

    “That’ll do. Thank you SIR.”

    “Is that it?

    “Thank you, SIR”

    “How’d I do? What was the reading?”

    “None of you business, SIR. Please drive on.”

    “More sober citizens to catch, eh? So am I going to know how much I can drink at dinner if you don’t tell me what my reading was?”

    … this was uttered with the cockiness and Dutch courage of one who’d just passed a breathalyzer test…

    “Best not to drink at all, SIR.”

    “Oh, is that against the law now?”

    “I won’t argue with you, SIR. Just move on.”

    “I’m not arguing with you, mate. Just askin’…”

    At this point HI pinched my thigh and said, “Let’s go home, Bushy. I’m tired.”

    For once in their lives, the boys in the back seat hadn’t uttered a word. A new record: three minutes without a peep from them.

    I beat the breathalyzer because I’d been drinking water for the last hour at dinner. I was aware of my responsibilities and had tempered my drinking. Which is what the law is for.

    But I wasn’t going to let that particular uniformed boofhead in on my secret.

    Rude bastard. They give the cops a bad name.

  11. “We’d gotten off to a bad start.”

    If I may say so, bb, that was indeed not a very good start at all. My experience with coppers has taught me to be extremely polite. They’re only doing their job. As soon as they notice some cockiness, they get stroppy.

  12. Re the DSP.

    Two and a half years before my husband passed away he had a fall from 4 metres up a tree. He shattered both feet and both ankles.

    He was wheelchair bound for the first six months after the accident, was in continuous pain and could not walk all that well up until the time he passed away. We were informed that he was apparently not eligible for DSP because his injuries “had not settled”.

    Even after 2 years and while he was waiting to have an operation on his feet that “may” have alleviated some of his pain the hierarchy within Centrelink still insisted that he was not eligible for DSP, even though his doctors had signed reams of paperwork for Centrelink to confirm that he would always be in some pain and would always walk with a limp.

    He was given the Newstart allowance which meant he still had to regularly make the trip to Centrelink for interviews to see if he was able to work right up until the time of his passing. Anyone who knew Ken also knew that he hated every minute of being dependent on government money. He had always been an extremely hard worker and couldn’t wait to get back to work and be self reliant.

    While I cannot fault the front line Centrelink staff, who were always so sorry that they could not do more to help Ken, I am still so very angry with a system that treats those with disabilities like criminals, when the real criminals (those who sit in their ivory towers and make these judgements) are paid ridiculously large amounts of taxpayers money for doing sweet bugger all.

    It’s well past time that they were made to live in the real world and show some compassion and empathy for those who, generally through no fault of their own, find it necessary to ask for government help.

  13. There tends to be a stigma attached to people with disability. It’s always been the case. Julia Gillard tried to change all that with the NDIS. And Abbott had agreed to it but not anymore.

  14. My friend was a garage and shed erector who was diagnosed with terminal melanoma, as he underwent radiotherapy and other treatments it was apparent who couldn’t do the heavy manual labour he was used to but Centrelink denied him access to Disability Support Pension and Newstart because he was self-employed, a construction industry sub contractor working for 1 company. He was however given a Health Care Card and as he had a frugal lifestyle lived off his savings for the final 2 years of his life.

    From the link provided yesterday, which had a warning NOT To Open. I use Ubuntu took the chance and opened the site.
    From Craigs Emerson’s Blog.

    Published in The Weekend Australian on 21.12.13

    MOST market analysts have concluded the Abbott government is deliberately pessimistic in its economic forecasts underlying the mid-year fiscal and economic outlook. Then, when the economy does better than forecast, the budget deficit will be better than expected and the government will claim the credit. But what if the economy does worse?

    That’s the distinct possibility considered by Ross Garnaut in his book Dog Days: After the Boom. Garnaut explained his thinking further in an Emmo Forum podcast with me, where he suggested that if the government did not make large savings through taxation and spending measures and the exchange rate remained overvalued, government debt would rise to about $700 million. The budget update forecasts gross debt of $667m, so Garnaut was on the money.

    The budget is in trouble. The government and the opposition have a responsibility to repair it. Blaming the previous government for the budget deficits is a political strategy, not an economic one.

    But here’s the political problem blocking an economic solution: the Prime Minister must break promises if the budget is to be repaired. Only that way, Garnaut reasoned, might Australia be able to navigate a course through the end of the mining boom without recession.

    When the Coalition declared a budget emergency in May, it pledged to set out its solution before the election. Its belated response just two days before the election left the budget bottom line virtually unchanged. Moreover, Tony Abbott repeatedly promised there would be no surprises and no excuses from his government. Yet the mid-year budget update is full of surprises and excuses.

    It’s all Labor’s fault, Joe Hockey thundered at the National Press Club. Having argued that the Labor government didn’t have a revenue problem, only a spending problem, the Treasurer announced further revenue downgrades that are responsible for more than 60 per cent of the deterioration in the budget position.

    In response to this worsening outlook, the government will exacerbate the problem with $13.7 billion in new spending and revenue decisions made in just 100 days since the election. It also will proceed with repealing the mining tax, scrapping the reduced superannuation tax concessions for the wealthiest Australians and implementing an extravagant paid parental leave scheme. And the government will implement the promise that will do the most damage to the budget: scrapping the carbon price as a revenue source and substituting for it wasteful spending on its direct action policy. To achieve the promised 5 per cent reduction in carbon emissions by 2020, direct action will be horrendously expensive in the final three years to 2020.

    The question is not if promises will be broken but which ones will be. This is where a government’s ideology comes into play. By decisions such as the enhanced paid parental leave, rescinding the mining tax and restoring full superannuation tax concessions for the wealthy while reimposing a 15 per cent tax on the superannuation of the lowest income earners, the government is signalling it wants to support the high end while hitting those at the bottom.

    When the Labor government pared back middle-class welfare the Coalition sought to block the savings. Hockey likened Labor’s cuts to the Howard government’s baby bonus for second and subsequent children to China’s one-child policy. Abbott opposed reductions in family payments for high-income earners and the means testing of the private health insurance rebate, describing these payments as “tax justice”.

    Back in the mid-1980s, when commodity prices collapsed and Paul Keating warned of Australia becoming a banana republic, the Hawke government implemented the second largest spending cuts on record. But it knew the burden needed to be fairly shared, assuring the Australian people of “restraint with equity”. The public reaction to the savings in the May 1987 economic statement was so favourable that Bob Hawke called an election for July and won with an increased majority.

    Australia faces similar circumstances now, when the world is not paying us as much as it has been. Again we need to tighten our belts. But it must be done fairly. And the opposition needs to play its part instead of blocking the passage of its own 2013-14 budget measures.

    At the same time the government cannot expect low-income earners to bear the brunt of the cuts while proceeding with an unaffordable paid parental leave scheme for high-income earners.

    It would be to the shared credit of the Coalition and Labor to work together on budget repair.

    If we are to avoid the dog days of recession that Garnaut fears, we must exercise restraint with equity.

    If the Hawke government implemented the second largest spending cuts on record, which government made the biggest cuts? It was the Gillard government in the financial year just gone. So let’s move beyond the blame game and show some rare but badly needed co-operation and fix the budget – fairly.

  16. So the ALP have left the Coalition with the Australian Economy as best as it is possible after the devastating effect of the GFC and having saved Australia from a recession. The Gillard Govt had done all the cuts with further middleclass welfare cuts required in the 2014 May Budget.
    Instead we have a Coalition Govt spending and borrowing just to make the Gillard (ALP) Govt as having left an economy in tatters, when it is exactly the reverse.
    The Coalition are much much more hateful of the Opposing Parties then the ALP which appears much too tame and were not harsh enough on the Howard Govt for leaving us with a Structural Deficit.

  17. Ridgiesrule
    Sorry to read about how your husband was treated. Your observation re rich vs poor is so true.

    Wow. Real Clint Eastwood stuff the way you describe it. Me, I say nuttin in such situations.

  18. I didn’t get even get remotely cheeky until I knew I’d passed the breathalyzer test. Until then it was genuine curiosity. Regarding the seat belt, I literally didn’t have a clue what point he was trying to make. I thought it might have been a rule that if given a choice between a sash and a lap-sash belt you had to wear the safer belt. When I discovered it was just a suggestion on his part, only then did I take him on.

    It was HE who thought I was being cheeky when I wasn’t, and so I eventually decided to stand up to the rude bugger.

  19. BB’s description of his word games with the young copper need to be immortalised in a Clint Eastwood movie. A classic encounter between generations.

  20. … immortalised in a Clint Eastwood movie. A classic encounter between generations.

    The words, “Go ahead, punk. Make-My-Day.” were on the tip of my lips, but HI was pinching too hard.

  21. BB
    Was the cop who shined a torch into your car wearing dark glasses? Cops who shine torches into cars should always wear dark glasses. It makes them look like real cops. A cop wore dark glasses when he shone the torch into Janet Leigh’s car in Psycho. Admittedly that was in the morning. No self-respecting cop would shine a torch into a car without wearing dark glasses. Sounds like the cop who shone the torch into your car was a young cop with no respect for proper police procedure. They should show Psycho at the Police Academy. Things just aint what they used to be. The world is really going to the dogs since Abbott took over.

  22. He was an Eastwood copper. They spit in people’s fish shops, then threaten to breach them for unsanitary food preparation areas. Or so I have been told recently.

  23. I believe you when you say your intentions were above reproach though.

    The thing is that they won’t tell you what your reading is. I suppose the logic is that they keep you guessing, so that you tend to err on the side of caution.

    I am scrupulously careful when out drinking. I always drink water for an hour before leaving the table, and don’t slosh it down before that, either.

    Having said that, I’d probably had one more than I usually do, and I was a little concerned, just a bit. How just counting to 5 can in any way be conclusive, beats me.

    Saves on disposable straws, but.

  24. Eastwood Copper probably read Bushfire Bill on the drivers license recognized the name and was muscling up to throw him in the slammer.

    Good thing HI was there to keep BB under control while copper was watching

  25. georgeous dunny

    I’m probably too late,but happy holidays, catch you here next year.


    Thank you for the Craig Emerson article, I like reading what he writes as I trust him.


    It has been wonderful the last 6 years not having to fill out the disability forms for Razz. I mean, when someone has MS, can’t walk, has trouble with hands, etc……the ridiculousness of having to write the same things every year, when things only get worse not better, it is just unbelievable. Gawd, I hope they leave her alone this time, unless of course they find a cure and can put her back into the very healthy state she was before this shitful thing got her.

  26. If I’d had my wits about me….

    “Count to five, SIR.”

    “One…. t-t-t-t-t-t-t-t-two….. thrrrrrrrrrrreee…. four…. four….. uhm…. whash nexsh, Officer?”

  27. My cop adventure. A true story.

    Years ago when #1 son was still at high school I had to pick him up from a school function at about 10 at night. The function was held in the school hall. The school – Catholic (that’s important) was next door to a Catholic village for the old and grumpy. Both the school and the village share the same access road from the highway and to leave the school you have to drive straight towards the grumps’ village, which at night means headlights shining into windows of a couple of residences. You can see where this is going…….

    I collected my son and as we were leaving a police car came up out of the carpark and followed us down the road. One of son’s friends was the daughter of a copper, she had been at the do that night, we assumed it was Sergeant X picking up his daughter and when the cop car flashed its lights at us we assumed it was Miss X being cute so we kept going. Once we reached the highway the cops flashed again so I pulled over.

    Now comes the good part – when the licence photo I had then had been taken I’d been in the middle of some aggressive chemotherapy so the photo showed me in a headscarf. Mr Plod made a few comments about the need to pull over when flashed and didn’t really like my son’s ‘We thought you were Sergeant X’ comment. He asked what was going on at the school, because there had been complaints from the grumps about hoons driving around. I explained it was a school thing and kids were being collected. Then……..Mr Plod asked for my licence and saw the headscarf photo. You could almost hear the thought wheels kick into high gear – Catholic school, school function…oh no! With some bewilderment he said ‘So, are you a nun?’ I just gave him a look. I can do the nun school teacher look really well, I used to teach with nuns. The poor bloke’s manner changed. He must have gone to a Catholic school. He became every apologetic, said he knew I couldn’t possibly have been doing anything that would cause complaints and fled.

  28. The not telling the reading bit is a bit strange.
    I have tested plenty of times and I always ask and am always told.
    Maybe because I have to be zero limit I know what the answer will be anyway.

    My strategy with the wallopers is be polite, say as little as possible, and go as soon as told.

  29. The last time a cop pulled me over was a long time ago. So long ago it might not have happened. Or if it happened it was certainly rare. The thing that struck me was his voice. His voice was toneless. It had no tone. When he didn’t speak his head nodded up and down, and the fingers of his right hand drummed on the window ledge. Drum drum. Up and down in time to his nod. This made him look quite silly. Not only that but he was wearing dark glasses. And he was holding a torch. He was almost a typical cop. The only thing that prevented him from being a completely typical cop was the way he had one leg crossed over the other. I could see this when I peered over the window ledge. And not only that but he was jiggling it. His ankle rather. His ankle jiggled at the end of his leg, and his sock came out of his shoe and disappeared somewhere into his trousers. If it wasn’t for that he would have been a completely typical grey cop. I say grey because he had grey hair and wore a grey coat, and his socks were grey and his shoes were more dark than grey. His shirt was not so grey, and his tie was half way between light blue and grey and his trousers were dark but less dark than grey. So he was not entirely grey but overall he was mainly grey. You could say he was almost a typical grey cop who liked to drum his fingers and jiggle his ankle. I felt sure if he took his hat off he would have had a bald spot. That would also be typical I thought. I felt sure it would be shiny and reflect the light from the street lamp I’d just happened to park my car under where he’d pulled me over a long time ago.

    Being a typical cop he did all the talking. I said nuttin.

  30. I decided that the camera I bought last Christmas really wasn’t much good, the pictures were too poor a quality to print in a Officeworks photobook when compared to photos taken by professional photographers or even photos taken with the older camera, which I had given away. The camera was small enough to slip into a pocket but the CCD memory isn’t up to snuff.

    So I looked at the Choice camera tests and wonder of wonders a newer version of my old camera topped the tests and was really cheap (I expect that it’s about to be superceded) so I bought the top ranked camera online from JB HI FI because no store admitted to carrying it. Camera delivered on Friday was faulty as tested by me, a friend, & 2 JBHI sales staff so they agreed to take it back.

    In my retail research, almost all compact digital cameras retail for less than $400, the top rated camera for $200. About 6 years ago similar cameras were $600 to $700.

    Replacement camera works satisfactorily so far, so next step is to put it to the Officeworks photobook test

  31. My saddest ticket was caught speeding along Beach Road where there is a rocky beach on one side and unfenced suburban train track on the other. Since forever that stretch of road has been an unofficial 80km zone. It was 5pm driving into the setting sun and the police had laid out their speed cameras. Did I have any excuse? Admitting that you couldn’t see them after visiting the optometrist seemed to be an excuse that was bound to get me into hot water, so I looked sheepish and said No.

  32. One day I was breathalised. When the copper asks me to count to 10, I almost asked if I could count in French but I was afraid he might say “non”…

  33. I have to admit, I have dined out on the nun story a lot, but so has my son. He still thinks it’s hilarious. I still have that old licence, I keep it to remind myself how dreadful I looked at the time. I looked nothing like a nun, really I didn’t.

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