From the Fridge Friday


As you are all probably aware, much of Australia is sizzling at the moment in heatwave conditions. South Australians have been sweltering for several days; Victoria for a couple. Around Melbourne today, it was 41C at Tullamarine, and 40C at Coldstream (inaptly named at this time of year).

Much to my surprise, OH has obeyed my instructions to keep certain doors closed except when necessary to get from one room to another, so the house is for the moment fairly comfortable. What’s more, parts of the metropolitan area are enjoying a mild respite with winds from the south. Tomorrow, however, we are in for a stinker, and I plan to do a runner to my favourite merchant and offer to be a volunteer in the cool room . . .

Meanwhile, I am doing my best to stay cool, calm, and collected while imbibing a local cider. Please feel free to join me. The punkah wallah has been instructed to use his best efforts.

Toy Soldier Forum

424 thoughts on “From the Fridge Friday

  1. Fiona and Joe6pack can we go back to 100 comments per page as this format is too unwieldy

    Or 50? It crashes the browser on my phone.

  2. This Turnbull NBN thing is going so well….

    First NBN buys all the rotting copper network from Telstra for $11 billion, making Telstra a lot richer and also making Telstra shareholders happy. Included in the deal is the Telstra HFC network.

    But that’s not all.

    Next NBN does a deal to pay Telstra $280 million to repair the same rotting copper network that Telstra never bothered fixing when they owned it. Telstra shareholders are even happier.

    Telstra wins deal to fix copper lines and maintain NBN connections

    But there’s more.

    Telstra and NBN are about to finalise an even bigger deal where NBN will pay Telstra around $1.5 to $1.8 billion to upgrade and expand the HFC network which Telsta has already sold to NBN. Telstra shareholders are ecstatic and put the champagne on ice.

    Telstra and NBN close in on massive HFC deal

  3. What we don’t have is fibre to the node even. What we don’t have is universal fast broadband, We now have Telstra back in the driving seat,

  4. An Introduction to a longer yarn..I will add to it as I go…if you want the whole story, you can save it and add to it too..or you can just let it go..what the hell!’s only a few written words in the merest point of time…


    Now, I can’t be certain of this, but as much as I am certain of other uncertainties, I am pretty certain of this.

    I am going to tell you a is going to be the last story…I am going to write it into a is going to be the last book..oh, others will write more stories and books, but THIS will be the last book of that era, for the story has ended, the time is past and the players are of no influence now in this new world rising..a new world where hope is a one minute wonder and love can seem a speculative is finished.

    This story has been seventy years in the making, but this book has been over two thousand years in the telling. It finished with the death a year ago of my mother and with her ; the last generation of that whole era..but it started in The West with the creation of the first major nation state of The Roman Empire….it started with “The Twelve Caesars”.

    There is a direct correlation between the two time periods…not solely through any genetic or ethnic association, but rather; that with the passing of my mothers generation, there ended that last epoch of casual anonymity. For much of their lives, over that entire history, many, many people had little or no individual documentation..they were lucky in the early days to even have a birth certificate, or at least a real one, never mind the plethora of personal information each of us has available to information gathers now!..and so it was from the earliest times…one only had the word of the giver that he or she was whom they said they drivers licence, or ID. card or banking card at all..just the word of the giver..just their honest word; “I am Jack, the son of Jack the elder, the son of Jack the eldest “and so on and on..and women barely figured at all..with even their names changed into an ownership legality.

    I do not use my own mother from any sort of filial loyalty, but rather as the best example I know of that generation and that social class who struggled from absolute poverty and obscurity to hunger for a modicum of self- respect and independence in a world saturated and suffocated under the blanket of obsessive middle-class materialistic banality..and also being hamstrung by obligatory religious adherence. She failed and died in obscurity..but oh how she hungered to be able to express her desires into the written word…

    And so we have the word of the first Caesar ; Julius..and HIS wars and HIS adventures..even the histories others have written of him are soaked in doubts and mystery…oh, we have a ”definitive history” of the man, as much as two thousand years of telling cannot but help to develop into Chinese whispers!…But HE being a bullshit artist as well, it is close enough, our own experiences and accrued living knowledge informs us of both the capability and limitations of one persons actions in one persons lifetime…the rest is conjecture…beautiful confected conjecture.

    It goes like this :

    The Twelve Caesars.

    “Now at last I am free!
    Off through the scrub I run
    Where sheep tracks only are seen
    Nothing but bush and sun
    Till all of a sudden I come
    Out where an axe swings free.
    Cutting, for love and money
    The axe bites deep in a tree…”

    A passing moment does not a lifetime make, but a moment’s passion can be a lifetime’s mistake. A life brought into being by the strangest union in the most unusual chances and circumstances one could imagine. He from the north of Italy, in the Dolomites, she from the ‘heartbreak country’ of the Murray Mallee in Australia..

    They met on the banks of the Murray River, He there to collect a truck-load of water for the camp, she on an evening ambulation from the station where she worked as a servant girl.

    He being able to speak barely a word of English, she not being able to understand a single word of Italian..But they met and exchanged pleasantries as only such ethnically diverse strangers could.

    He asked (in Italian) if they ate well at the big house…

    She replied ( in English) that the evening light spread a certain calm over the waters of the river, didn’t he think?

    He was a stone-mason by trade.

    She desired to be a poet.

    They got on well.

    Indeed, They eventually wed..the youthful composer of the above doggerel ; Rosaline Thomas and the refugee Italian ; Enrico Corradini (whom she would call; “Ricky”). And as she describes her running through the scrub to meet with her lover, I can now ask, knowing the ending of her story ; Was she running to embrace life, or running from a destructive lifestyle?..And Enrico, the refugee , HE we know was running from hunger and war, but did he realise then as he surely did later, what and where was he running to?

    A myth surrounding their meeting and courtship arose in the family circle..It seems the erstwhile Enrico was out hunting rabbits one day and he got lost..only to stumble onto the dusty bush camp where, coincidentally, the young Rosaline was in attendance to her mother ; Grace Thomas, who was expecting her fifth child. Rosaline’s father, having difficulty understanding the gesticulating “eyetalian”, instructed Rose to show him the track leading to the presumed wood-cutters camp from whence he came.

    A week or so later, Enrico turned up again, gun in hand and lost again..the same procedure as last time was followed and that was that, until again..another week later Enrico shows up again, lost and hunting rabbits…this time, as Rosaline is leading the gentleman away, Richard Thomas scratched the back of his head in thought…he turned to his wife..:

    “You know..that eyetie must be the worst shot in the world…he’s never got one single bunny!”

    But it was a lie..they lied..we all lie, I lie, all our loved ones lie..soft lies, lies to protect reputations, to enhance the myth..the whole of history is a lie..a comfortable lie, a necessary lie..admit it!..we love the lie.

    But wait!..Richard and Grace Thomas have their own story of their courtship to it too another myth?.

    It goes like this.:

    Both of them were unknown to each other and were traveling on the same ship from Adelaide to Sydney. He for escape from a detested blacksmith occupation in the Moonta mines, she to join a nunnery.

    (To be continued).

  5. leone

    The fraudband farce is fast reminding me of a goon show episode where a character by the name of Harold Bowels MP manages to buy Cleopatra’s needle for a bargain price and because of this the cost blowouts associated with, IIRC, sending an expedition to Egypt to pick it up, transporting it to London, paying a ransom after Bowels is kidnapped by Bedouins and erecting the needle did not matter because they got the needle for such a low price.

  6. Thanks j6p

    Now you have finished marking you can relax over Christmas or do you have to do battle at Toscanos, Fiona

  7. Billie,

    I will probably be at Toscanos first thing tomorrow. The fridge is nearly bare, and I want to get us back into sensible eating. And me into sensible sleeping and exercise.

    Then there are all the stashes of bits and pieces around the house that need sorting and despatching to the appropriate places (bin, Brotherhood, DD). All this will be done little by little, and not at all when it’s too hot.

  8. Janice,

    Apart from what I’ve already said in my reply to Billie, there are a couple of papers that only need a bit more work before they can be sent off to journals. There is also one graduate student who needs encouragement.

    And – as of a couple of minutes ago – there is the possibility of some lecturing next semester in another department. If so, I will need to spend some time preparing.

    In other words, I expect to be quietly and usefully occupied.

  9. Fiona,

    Of course I knew the answer before I asked the question! There is no such thing as ‘spare time’ because it is filled with something else. I will have to post a little piece I wrote years ago that turned up when I was binning stuff to reduce the ‘keep me’ pile for the move down here….all I have to do is find it!

  10. GL

    Very nice comparison.

    The whole mess is made even worse when you remember the talk about the government flogging the NBN off and Telstra being the most likely buyer. Telstra sells all their out-dated, rotting rubbish to NBN, NBN pays Telstra to fix it all up, Telstra then buys it all back, repaired, improved, expanded and in better condition than it has been for decades, with the added bonus of the income from all those NBN connections, for a rumoured price of $20 billion.

  11. leonetwo

    That Telstra , NBN stuff is such a monumental mismanagement that it has a whiff of corruption about it with someone on a nice little earner out of it all.

  12. It takes real skill to line up that series of” fluck ups” .

    W.A. Inc. days had a nice rort that happened a couple of times. Government sell property asset to tycoon 1 who quickly sells to tycoon 2 with a juicy profit, sells to tycoon 3 with a nice profit, repack and sell back to the government for a nice quid. Happy smiling faces and Krug all round.

  13. Kaffeeklatscher,

    Some might call that a rort. Others might call it shrewd business practice . . .

  14. You know, everything this lousy farce of a government does sounds like a Goon Show script, or an episode of Get Smart or Yes Prime Minister. Except everything this lousy farce of a government does leaves all those fictions far behind in lunacy. No-one could make up the stuff that goes on now.

    Latest example. The world is moving away from coal, coal mines are being closed everywhere. Except here. Our governments – state and federal, Labor and Coalition, are hell bent on digging up more valuable farmland and wrecking more water supplies to allow overseas tax dodgers to mine coal no-one wants to buy. It’s sheer lunacy. And now Grunt has approved the expansion of a coal port in Queensland for a proposed mine that might never happen because no-one wants to finance it. A mining project that is part-owned by Gina Rinehart. And Premier Palaschuk is doing all she can to get the whole mess up and running.

  15. Would love to see “like” buttons here and elsewhere replaced with “agree,” Often push “like” when I agree but don’t like contents of comments,

  16. a collection of links related to cities, development, politics. Bernard linked to one of his older, now free, articles

  17. Merry Christmas, Kathy!

    Bankrupt Kathy Jackson has been ordered to pay the Health Services Union almost $1m, meaning she now owes it about $2.4m

    On Tuesday the federal court told the disgraced whistleblower to pay the union $997,349 in costs and judgment interests..


  19. BK,

    I can’t remember at the moment who the notable woman was, but she was invited to dine with Pell when he was Cardinal-Archbishop of Sydney.

    The serving dishes were placed on the table; she (the only woman present) started helping herself from one of them.

    Pell, if I recall the story correctly, allegedly smashed his fist onto the table and bellowed, “In my house, I am the first to be served.”

    Seemed strangely un-New Testamentish to me.

  20. Had I been his guest, I would have scraped what I’d placed on my plate back into the serving dish, followed by a generous dollop of spit.

  21. Sorry if already posted but this is FMD from little Grunt. The Great Barrier Reef brought to you by Philip Morris ? Perhaps if the tax dodging bustards paid their taxes we wouldn’t need to pass around a begging bowl .

    The Greenwashing it will produce will be sick making as well.

    Sponsorships sought for Great Barrier Reef

    WEALTHY companies are being asked to sponsor the Great Barrier Reef as part of a new initiative to improve its health.

    THE federal government is offering sponsorships, ranging from $1 million to $7 million, that will allow companies to use the reef in their branding while help saving the World Heritage-listed asset.

    A glossy brochure has been released, inviting companies to stump up cash for conservation efforts such as restoring seabird nesting habitats and fighting the crown-of-thorns starfish.

  22. My whinge of the day:

    Just back to Sydney after a day trip to Brissie but I am really am sick to death with the service provided by our domestic airlines, they just don’t seem to give a damn.

    I had a meeting appointment in Brisbane at 11am but the flight was delayed “due to operational reasons” and I missed the meeting when we touched down two hours late at 12.15pm.To add to insult to injury, the 2.50pm (QLD time) flight back was cancelled and I was put on a later flight back at 5.30pm.

    A total waste of a day and a good $450, tickets and transfers.. After complaining, I was given an $8 refreshment voucher for a couple of cups of coffee while I waited for my flight back.

    The other mob are just as bad.

  23. Bastards. Utter bastards.

    Dying Pakistani student Hassan Asif denied final visit from family by immigration department

    A terminally ill student who wanted to see his family one last time has had his request rejected by Australia’s immigration department.

    Mr Asif appealed to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection to allow his mother and brother travel to Australia and be by his side in his final days.

    But his eleventh hour plea has not been granted.

    A spokesperson for the DIBP said in a statement: “The compassionate nature of the proposed visit by his mother and brother was considered, however, anyone wishing to visit Australia must satisfy Australia’s visitor visa requirements, including health, character and genuine temporary stay requirements.

    “The likelihood of an applicant overstaying or seeking to remain permanently in Australia is also a matter that must be assessed. Particularly in compassionate circumstances, a decision-maker takes all of the facts of a particular case into consideration.

    “In this case all of the facts have been taken into consideration and the decision maker has not issued the visa,” the spokesperson said.

    The DIBP offered its sympathies and invited Mr Asif’s family to lodge new applications.

    In a statement on its website, Melbourne City Mission said: “It is unconscionable that this young man — who has family — be allowed to die without a loved one by his side.”

    Mr Asif’s oncologists have also appealed to the minister to allow their patient’s family to be by his side.

  24. what complete and utter fucking mongrel bastards. i hope those sociopaths in the immigration/final solution department and the Minister rot in hell. anything they ever suffer will never bring tears from me. Such low down pestilence on this Earth we have in the farcically named ‘immigration’ department. It is the victimising, terrorising, hurting, maiming, metal health destroying, and causing death department, lead down that disgusting, humanity debauching path by the odious creatures that pass for human beings that the Liberal Party give the title of ministers.

  25. “One million migrants arrived in Europe in 2015”

    The number of migrants and refugees arriving by sea and land in six countries at the external borders of the European Union surpassed the million mark this year, reported on Tuesday the International Organization for Migration (IOM). IOM figures cover six countries: Greece, Bulgaria, Italy, Spain, Malta and Cyprus. Greece totaled the overwhelming majority (816,752) recorded 1,005,504 arrivals to December 21.

  26. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    Mark Kenny analyses Turnbull’s first 100 days. “Big problems persist and, short of an election, Turnbull’s authority struggles to escape the gravity of its creation.”
    A Labor senator calls for an inquiry into the Senate being misled over the Julie Bishop airport screening affair.
    A good piece from Kristina Keneally as we reach the end of 2015. Well worth a read.
    Peter Martin explains that the Productivity Commission report in to the workplace proves that just about everything conservative commentators have been saying is flat out wrong.
    “View from the Street” on Abetz declaring war on Sundays.
    Hunt approves Abbot point – and I just heard on the news that donations are coming in to fund a court appeal on Hunt’s decision.
    George Brandis is staring at his navel after Dreyfus wins his court case against him.
    Fiona Nash fires a warning shot over Michelle Guthrie’s bow.
    Meanwhile Alan Stokes has some sage, though nostalgic, advice to Ms Guthrie on how to improve the ABC.
    I know I couldn’t cope with being in this!

  27. Section 2 . . .

    Ah, the wonders of privatisation! It’s a disgrace actually.
    Another ADF cock up – that’s the kindest interpretation one might make.
    This (alleged) mongrel seems to be in a bit of trouble with the law.
    And these mongrels were probably trading while insolvent for quite some time.
    Tony Michelmore says that Australians are more relaxed about politics now that Abbott is gone.
    But have we fallen for personality politics?
    And Shane Warne’s “charity” is in a bit more trouble.
    A poll finds half of America would be embarrassed if Trump were to become its President.
    The Mehajer chronicle continues apace.
    Now it’s pharmacists joining the fray on penalty rates.

  28. “A poll finds half of America would be embarrassed if Trump were to become its President.”

    Yes, maybe, but will they get off their backsides and vote against him? Probably not.

  29. Interesting. abc very quiet about the penalty rates issue until this morning, now leading headline news that one of their own has said they should do it. Mind you, they’re not giving much say to any opponents, but at least it will be making some people aware of what they plan to do.

    Heard interview on rn with Tanya Plib, asking her why Labor’s policies haven’t inspired the Aussie people, I kept shouting that is because no one is aware of them because the msm and abc refuse to give them any publicity.

  30. At least we have one Australian we can be proud of. Julia has been flat out all year helping improved education all over the world, doing the total opposite to what is happening here. If they keep destroying our education here, we’ll need her help here.

    • Five PMs since Paul Keating and only one we can be proud of. On the other hand her worth does outweigh the sum total of the other four’s failures.
      OK I’m biased but I reckon if I’m wrong it’s not by much.

  31. The 50 Labor policies (so far) the MSM never talks about.

    The MSM keeps telling us we are less interested in politics now Abbott has been deposed. That’s true for the MSM, all we get is endless guff about how well ShallowMal is doing.

    Abbott may have been an embarrassment, but at least his daily headline grabs meant we all stayed well informed about what this farce of a government was doing. Now the MSM devotes all its energy to daily waffle about how wonderful Mal is, what a great job he is doing and how ‘calm’ politics has become.

    Don’t fall for it. We need to be more alert, more interested than ever.

  32. Interesting. abc very quiet about the penalty rates issue until this morning

    Cue the terrorisms smoke screen…

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