CITY NEWS JUNE 7

City News

DESPITE a relatively unremarkable-to-date annual kangaroo cull, an animal rights activist is spooking Canberra motorists.

The protester sets up on Mugga Lane most afternoons between 3 and 6, complete with corflutes and a lifelike kangaroo mask, urging passersby to “stop the kangaroo massacre”, which is “cruel and catastrophic”.

Some motorists toot in approval, others give a lengthy blast to show displeasure and occasionally yell obscenities.

While our intrepid activist is cull-campaign toughened, one recent experience left the protester blindsided.

The driver of a large black, four-wheel drive pulled in after dark one night, then quickly left. The driver returned the following night armed with a portable light and a supply of batteries, “to make sure people see your sign”.

LRVs are coming and they are fast. Posters are popping up in shopping centres warning that LRVs (Light Rail Vehicles) are “approaching” and posing the question: “Are you Rail Ready?”

Canberra-metro.com.au has begun training commuters to “only cross at designated intersection crossings”, pointing out that LRVs move quickly and that “earphones and other distractions can put you at risk”.

Meantime cynics who scoffed at a 2018 Stage 1 deadline may have a glimmer of hope with the wriggle room that appears to have been applied to the latest update.

The word is that the project will be completed on schedule by the end of 2018 with the first passengers carried in the first quarter of 2019.

As for Stage 2 it appears to be way ahead of schedule, given there is no schedule. A large “light rail stops here” banner is plastered across the facade of the site of Geocon’s skyscraper, the Grand Central Towers at Woden.

IF there was a Walkley Award for weasel words Nationals’ leader Michael McCormack would already have his name engraved on one of the prized gongs.

Attempting to drown out predecessor Barnaby Joyce’s noise on decentralisation, the former journalist said: “Whilst there is always more work to do, any initiatives which enhance the government’s strategic policy focus on decentralisation – to not only grow regional communities but also decrease congestion in our cities and improve the quality of life and share economic opportunities more broadly – are always welcome.”

DESPITE the ongoing debacle surrounding Barnaby Joyce’s relocation of the APVMA to Armidale, the decentralisation sword of Damocles continues to hang over some Canberra public servants.

At a recent estimates hearing Nationals Senate leader Nigel Scullion admitted “seven agencies were being considered by cabinet for decentralisation away from Canberra, Sydney and Melbourne”.

The former Deputy PM continues to mock the concept after reports of staff being moved from Sydney to Parramatta suggesting: “You can’t decentralise to the centre. You have to decentralise from the centre”.

IN 2013 Belconnen was proud that a local pizza shop was consistently topping its franchise’s nationwide chain. Florey Domino’s dominated the chain’s 550 outlets nationwide winning its 13th straight annual sales award. At the time Domino’s Florey was knocking out a pie every two minutes. Now Domino’s languishes at the bottom of the just published Deakin University’s Global Obesity Centre study.

STILL on nutrition and the University of Canberra is trumpeting the appointment of health and fitness guru Michelle Bridges’ dietitian Lisa Donaldson.

Diagnosed with coeliac disease and other intestinal issues more than a decade ago, Ms Donaldson, who holds a Bachelor of Education degree from UC, returned to the institution to undertake a Master of Nutrition and Dietetics graduating in 2011. Donaldson, who has also worked with Channel 9 nutritionist Dr Joanna McMillan, returns as UC’s dietitian in residence.

FORMER Ainslie transgender footballer Hannah Mouncey apparently has made giant steps in handling her “potty mouth”. The athlete who came to prominence after being banned by the AFL from playing in the AFLW recently appeared on Fox Footy’s “Open Mike” with the doyen of Melbourne AFL scribes Mike Sheahan. Mouncey tweeted that she had “recorded Open Mike without swearing… seriously, it’s a big f&*%@$g achievement”.

Advertisements

TOP 10 BARNABY JOYCE HEADLINES USING BEATLE SONGS

By Mike Welsh

1 WHEN I’M 64 (SHE’LL BE 47)

2 TWIST N SHOUT (JOBS AND GROWTH)

3 WHILE MY GUITAR GENTLY WEEPS (MY SAX WAILS)

4 JOHNNY B GOODE (BARNABY B BAD)

5 PAPERBACK WRITER (THE PUBLIC HAS A RIGHT TO KERNOT)

6 I SAW HER STANDING THERE (SO I THOUGHT WTF)

7 LET IT BE ( A BOY CALLED BARNABY)

8 HAPPINESS IS A WARM GUN (AND I’M FIRING REAL BULLETS)

9 THE FOOL ON THE HILL (FELL FOR A GIRL ON THE RISE)

10 HELP (I’M A CELEBRITY GET ME OUT OF HERE)

RODNEY DANGERFIELD

The one-liners were impeccable, unimprovable. Dangerfield spent years on them; he once told an interviewer that it took him three months to work up six minutes of material for a talk-show appearance.

CreditAllen Tannenbaum/Images Press/Getty Images.

Imagine having no talent. Imagine being no good at all at something and doing it anyway. Then, after nine years, failing at it and giving it up in disgust and moving to Englewood, N.J., and selling aluminum siding. And then, years later, trying the thing again, though it wrecks your marriage, and failing again. And eventually making a meticulous study of the thing and figuring out that, by eliminating every extraneous element, you could isolate what makes it work and just do that. And then, after becoming better at it than anyone who had ever done it, realizing that maybe you didn’t need the talent. That maybe its absence was a gift.

These were the stations on the via dolorosa of Jacob Cohen, a.k.a. Rodney Dangerfield, whose comedy I hold above all others’. At his peak — look on YouTube for any set he did between 1976 and 1990 — he was the funniest entertainer ever. That peak was long in coming; by the time he perfected his act, he was nearly 60. But everything about Dangerfield was weird. While other comedians of that era made their names in television and film, Dangerfield made his with stand-up. It was a stand-up as dated as he was: He stood on stage stock-still in a rumpled black suit and shiny red tie and told a succession of diamond-hard one-liners.

The one-liners were impeccable, unimprovable. Dangerfield spent years on them; he once told an interviewer that it took him three months to work up six minutes of material for a talk-show appearance. If there’s art about life and art about art, Dangerfield’s comedy was the latter — he was the supreme formalist. Lacking inborn ability, he studied the moving parts of a joke with an engineer’s rigor. And so Dangerfield, who told audiences that as a child he was so ugly that his mother fed him with a slingshot, became the leading semiotician of postwar American comedy. How someone can watch him with anything short of wonder is beyond me.

“To be a comedian,” he said, “you have to get onstage and find out if you’re funny.” He wasn’t. During his first career, performing as Jack Roy, he was a singing waiter, used props, tried impressions. Even after his second coming — using a stage name devised by a club owner as a gag — and becoming a regular on “The Ed Sullivan Show,” he could be miserable. In a YouTube clip of him performing on “Sullivan” in 1969, Dangerfield’s face is the unsettling bluish-pink of raw chicken. The jokes — about getting directions, his wife’s driving, their apartment — keep bombing. The setups are too long; the delivery is too slow; the punch lines are so lame that you can hear the scattered laughter of distinct individuals. Even worse, he panders. “I’ll tell you, it’s nice to hear you laugh,” he says at one point. It’s almost unseemly.

In the decade that followed, Dangerfield eliminated everything from his act but the setups and punch lines. In his determination to unlock how they worked, he devised multiple jokes around the same setup, like a composer writing variations on a theme. “When I was born, I was so ugly the doctor slapped my mother” might be followed with “I was an ugly kid. When I was born, after the doctor cut the cord, he hung himself.” His body of work is a codex, a “Well-Tempered Clavier” of comedy.

Most comics use the setup and punch line like a nail and hammer, but Dangerfield used them as a theremin player uses her hands, to bring forth strange, unexpected effects. Some were so masterful and odd that they transcended linear logic. My favorite joke of his — “I told my dentist my teeth were going yellow. He told me to wear a brown necktie” — barely makes sense at first. It’s a bewildering piece of misdirection. But it works as a marvel of dream logic, a joke Kafka might have liked.

With other jokes the angle between setup and punch line was so acute that it momentarily stunned the audience, requiring an extra beat to sink in and creating opportunities of timing. You can watch one at the close of a Dangerfield set on the “Tonight” show. It’s Aug. 1, 1979, and he’s at the summit of his craft. As with the very best comedians, the laughter begins before he speaks. His delivery is angry, rapid-fire, leaving the audience no time to recover. The standup portion kills, but everyone knows the better part will happen at the host’s desk, where Johnny Carson, pulling on a cigarette, will gamely set him up.

Continue reading the main story

FAKING NEWS…NEVILLE NOBODY VOTES NO. WHO KNEW?

By Mike Welsh

Neville Nobody knows nothing and nobody and anybody who knows Neville knows he never did no harm to nobody. (Like Neville those who know him didn’t receive a complete education).

Neville Nobody is so straight up and down and nigh on invisible that he’s not eligible for the colourful Aussie moniker “Nifty”. Fact is Neville doesn’t even qualify for the slightly less formal but grudgingly accepted- by most Nevilles- the abbreviation “Nev”. It’s Neville and that’s it. Nothing and no-one will ever change it or him.

IMG_0205

But that is until now. While change doesn’t sit well with Neville Nobody, one thing has seriously niggled (Neville hasn’t been niggled, seriously or otherwise since February 14 1966 on the introduction of decimal currency) and that’s being told how to to vote. Neville Nobody does vote but nobody who knows Neville knows how he votes. They accept that nobody tells Neville Nobody how to vote. Nobody!!

Nobody knows this but many who know Neville are prepared to bet a “penny to a pound of goat dropping” that Neville’s problem is he has never fully recovered the trauma he suffered as a schoolboy boarding public transport on that D day in ’66 and being given “yank” money in change for the fare he paid in pennies.

Now Neville is not your type to boycott something just because its bent out of shape.  No, Neville is not by nature or any stretch of the imagination a protester and by boycotting the poll he’d also be stepping way out of his comfort zone. So without malice or judgement, Neville Nobody,as far as anyone knows, is voting no. Not because he has an issue with same sex relationships or has any conflicting cultural or religious beliefs but simply he firmly believes there are some things which matter. Although nobody who knows Neville knows if there are any other things which “matter” to Neville.

 

IMG_9829.JPG

It’s simple, the most non-threatening- know- nothing -nong on the planet should not have to endure some loudmouth slapping him around the head with a rainbow placard and demanding he vote yes is beyond the pale for the this seriously washed out beige battler.

Telling Neville Nobody or anybody for that matter how to vote is simply un Australian. Beware the Neville Nobodys.

COMFY BEDFELLOWS, LOST APOSTROPHES AND SPUDS

BY MIKE WELSH from CANBERRA CITY NEWS FEB 8

President Donald Trump’s dressing down of our PM provoked a couple of Canberra wireless talkers into questioning his business ethics.

 the-donald 

FM 104.7’s breakfast duo Ryan and Tanya wanted to know if Trump’s travel ban on refugees from certain Muslim countries carried over to his extensive business interests.

Ryan, posing as Osama, an Iranian student visiting Washington, rang the local Trump Hotel to book a room for he and his Iranian mates. “Not a problem Sir” said the accommodating man at the D.C. end. Clearly business and politics can be comfy bedfellows.

 

The Enlightened city is set for a heightened level of enlightenment this year according to CM Andrew Barr.

In launching the 7th annual Enlighten Festival this week, Mr Barr predicted it would “easily surpass” our most famous festival Floriade.

Barr’s bold claim was backed by Singapore Airlines coming on board as a sponsor. The airline’s representative and former Canberra boy Karl Schubert says Asian visitors were keen to take advantage of the Capital Express flights to see Canberra’s buildings “in a different light”.

Enlighten 2017 takes place around national buildings and the Parliamentary Triangle from March 3 to 12.

enlighten

A worrying trend (for pedants at least) seems to have spread across the Enlightened city…The IUOTA (inappropriate use of the apostrophe). This week I spotted a very green example at the Kippax Raiders’ club promoting the special meal deal “Coastal Combo’s“. Take Away food shops often advertise Fish N Chip’s and the growing number of people who automatically apply the IUOTA to that bygone era (when the apostrophe knew its place) the 50s, 60s and 70s… might suggest the old journalistic idiom of IF IN DOUBT LEAVE IT OUT has been flipped on its head. The new norm…whack it in to be sure. Is this acceptable for an enlightened city?

pauline-dec-sketch

Still on Fish N Chips and near catastrophe has befallen the local fryers. Unseasonal weather, battering potato crops in Southern states, has created a potato famine (of sorts) causing hardship for those partial to the thin slice of pomme de terre cooked in batter and called a Potato Scallop (in Tassie it’s a Potato Cake).

The thousands of Canberra connoisseurs of the Potato Scallop are reportedly “getting by” on the frozen but vastly inferior variety.

Might be unhelpful though to suggest they…“eat (Potato) cake instead”..

abstract-art

Nice to see that abstract still makes the art grow fonder

One of Canberra’s most valuable assets is back home after a rare overseas visit.

Jackson Pollock’s Blue Poles, one of the world’s most recognisable pieces is safely back on the wall at the National Gallery after a trip to London.

And apparently the controversial painting, purchased by the Whitlam Government in 1973 for a ‘tad’ over $1mil was “missed”.

According to NGA’s senior curator of international art, Lucina Ward, “visitors expect to see it in Canberra… it is one of the National Gallery’s most famous paintings”.

Estimates of Blue Poles’ current worth vary widely between $20Mil and $350Mil.

Two men sitting in deck chairs on a traffic island during Monday’s peak hour viewing traffic flow through a large roundabout was indeed a rare sight. And one which runs the risk of compounding the belief in that ignorant national myth that there is nothing more exciting to do in Canberra than watch traffic.

Apparently the pair of local residents held grave safety fears after the installation of lights on the dangerous Barton Highway/William Slim Dr/Gundaroo Dr roundabout, but at last report, after a relatively smooth transition, had given it the thumbs up.

Sadly though for the reputation of the Capital the story went national.

img_6621

Marauding MAMILS (middle aged men in Lycra) and their attitude is an issue brewing to a head more powerful than an inexpertly tapped keg of the Braddon brew, and will explode soon if not approached in a cordial fashion.

The fair dinkum practitioners of the pedal in all their yellow/pink flexible splendour were targeted yet again last week in an article asking the question.. Why are Canberrans so unkind to cyclists?

Responses on social media, ranging from..”Canberrans are a loving, kindly people who delight in the social benefits of bike riding “….to..“I’m glad I have a Bullbar on my car” might suggest we have a long ride ahead.

 

MALCOLM TURNBULL TAKES THE MILKY BAR KID DOWN FROM HIS HIGH HORSE

THE UNABRIDGED VERSION OF MALCOLM TURNBULL’S EXPLANATION TO KEVIN RUDD FOR NOT ENDORSING HIM FOR THE UNITED NATIONS GIG.
Dear Kevin
Thank you for the recent application for the prime and much coveted position of Secretary General at the United Nations.
While we weren’t swamped with applications for this plumb role, (you , a butch chick from NZ and a couple of other randoms) , we still had to follow the mandatory and extensive process which thankfully , in your case, was a quick show of hands from the boys over beers and pizzas at a Kingston pub last Tuesday night. Topped up with the bi- partisan proxies of True Believers  venting long held grudges, it would appear you have completely missed the cut, dude.
While we appreciate the massive amount of arse licking, energy and preparation you applied to this project  (actually we didn’t even bother to open your email?), and without wishing to put too fine a point on it, my heartfelt and sincere hope is you will eventually come to fully appreciate the near impossible (piece of piss actually) task we were charged with.
In order to be seen to afford you the famous Aussie “fair suck of the sauce bottle” we reached out  to at least two of your selected referees. Remarkably both Ms Gillard and Mrs Keneally were  forthright, candid and pithy in their estimations of your appropriateness for this prestige position. You will be no doubt be heartened to know Ms Gillard is now nursing a broken ankle after falling from a marble table on which she’d been dancing since learning of your UN failure.  And you’d be impressed that Mrs Kenealy was prepared to go the… full nine yards, offering her beloved Labrador puppy in the event of you being unable to fulfil your taxing UN duties. A delicious moot point now, Kevvy but if I may be blunt, their relentless references to a “backstabbing pissant” and a “psychopathic narcissist” may have taken most of the gloss off your once glowing and stratospheric approval rating. History will now record the solid endorsements of the “blonde bombshell” and the “ginger dreamboat” failed miserably to raise your problematic credibility rating to the prescribed base level of the UN’s Selection Criteria. The marker, which some say is petty and small minded, is a relatively unknown and rarely used but convenient caveat inserted in the process to eliminate self-seeking, short tempered dictators from Queensland.
I will come clean Kevin, largely due to your penchant for leaking to Laurie Oakes, that yes I did indeed give you some reason for hope by hinting, several times, that you had my full support for your candidature.  But given my somewhat awkward lack of a silly old mandate, the hair-splitters in my party (a homophobic bunch of Catholic Boarding School Abbott acolyte rednecks) have deemed my giving you the nod completely and utterly out of the question. Broad church my fat arse.
It is my sincerest wish that you won’t remain crushed and numb for too long (no hurry) but that you keep your chins up, Digger, as there’s always another door about to slam in your phoney face.  Take heart my friend, as I’ve said many times since I excommunicated the monk “ there is no better time in our history to be a member of the knifed Australian PMs club and to be looking for a job”.
The reality is that the Australian people have spoken and they yelled loudly that it was …..“way past time the Milky Bar Kid was dragged down from his High Horse”.
I have asked Erica Betts,  our new HR chick, to keep your deets on file should a similar position become available, at which point we could drag your file and enjoy another round of the fab drinking game we call “not getting mad but getting even”.
To show there are no hard feelings, the next time you (deign) to visit Canberra, how about you and I and Albo swing by Dirty Davina’s Kiss My Whip pole dancing club in Braddon?.
In the end, as you are/were wont to say, “let me say this”….. we just simply couldn’t have an earwax munching, pigeon-toed, nerd haughtily strutting the world stage, again. And while you were not nominated for this once in a lifetime and career defining role I strongly encourage you to apply for other less important but more suitable opportunities we have available by visiting us at http://www.suckedinkev.com.au.
Yours,
Malcolm Turnbull
PM