This week’s feature song is one which, until a few weeks ago, I had not heard in years. John Kerr has a country music show on Gold Coast community radio station 94.1FM these days and each week he seems to play at least one old song which I have almost forgotten…this one was a joy to hear again.
That big eight-wheeler rollin’ down the track
Means your true-lovin’ daddy ain’t comin’ back
‘Cause I’m movin’ on, I’m rollin’ on
You were flyin’ too high, for my little old sky
So I’m movin’ on
That big loud whistle as it blew and blew
Said hello to the southland, we’re comin’ to you
When we’re movin’ on, we’re rollin’ on
You had the laugh on me, so I’ve set you free
And I’m movin’ on
Mister fireman won’t you please listen to me
‘Cause I got a pretty mama in Tennessee
Keep movin’ me on, keep rollin’ on
So shovel the coal, let this rattler roll
And keep movin’ me on
Mister Engineer, take that throttle in hand
This rattler’s the fastest in the southern land
To keep movin’ me on, keep rollin’ on
You gonna ease my mind, put me there on time
And keep rollin’ on
I’ve warned you baby, from time to time
But you just wouldn’t listen or pay me no mind
Now I’m movin’ on, I’m rollin’ on
You’ve broken your vow, and it’s all over now
So I’m movin’ on
You’ve switched your engine now I ain’t got time
For a triflin’ woman on my main line
Cause I’m movin on, you done your daddy wrong
I’ve warned you twice, now you can settle the price
‘Cause I’m movin on
But someday baby when you’ve had your play
You’re gonna want your daddy but your daddy will say
Keep movin’ on, you stayed away too long
I’m through with you, too bad you’re blue
Keep movin’ on
December 8th, 2013 at 06:52pm
Today’s Friday Funny came to me from Michael Berry of AM 740 KTRH in Houston, Texas. It’s a very clever and amusing series of definitions produced by rearranging letters. They all seem to fit, especially the last one. Enjoy!
When you rearrange the letters:
BEST IN PRAYER
When you rearrange the letters:
When you rearrange the letters:
A ROPE ENDS IT
When you rearrange the letters:
When you rearrange the letters:
HE BUGS GORE
THE MORSE CODE:
When you rearrange the letters:
HERE COME DOTS
When you rearrange the letters:
When you rearrange the letters:
CASH LOST IN ME
When you rearrange the letters:
IS NO AMITY
When you rearrange the letters:
LIES – LET’S RECOUNT
When you rearrange the letters:
ALAS! NO MORE Z ‘S
A DECIMAL POINT:
When you rearrange the letters:
I’M A DOT IN PLACE
When you rearrange the letters:
THAT QUEER SHAKE
ELEVEN PLUS TWO:
When you rearrange the letters:
TWELVE PLUS ONE
When you rearrange the letters:
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA
When you rearrange the letters:
AN ARAB BACKED IMPOSTER
December 6th, 2013 at 05:47am
George Soros is a bit of a worry. He’s clearly a smart (albeit wrong on many subjects) man, and the timing of many of his moves have been interesting, but today’s move is one of the most interesting and worrying ones I’ve seen in a while.
George Soros is taking an interest in the Nine network, and is set to become a shareholder of the network today, along with a few others. Nine needs new investors because it has a lot of debt. George Soros can certainly help to fix that…he is a billionaire after all, but when he gets involved, things are never quite as they seem, especially when he is involved in media.
To many Australians, I would imagine George Soros is not a name they recognise. Some would, but for many he would just be recognised as yet another rich foreigner. Alas George is not just any rich foreigner.
George has “progressive” (I’d put him firmly in the socialist bracket) views and isn’t afraid to use his wealth in intriguing ways to promote his views. Now, I don’t begrudge the man his views, and I don’t begrudge him the right to advocate his views or to spend his money how he sees fit…rather, I just think it’s important that Australians are brought up to speed on who and what he is before he gets his hooks in to the Australian media, especially given the timing of his announcement.
Over in the US, George funds many “progressive” groups. He funds some non-political things too, but in the category of politically-active groups, the ones he funds seem to all do three things:
1) Defend the Obama administration and any other “progressive” politician. This includes attempting to cover up the scandals and failures, or if that isn’t possible, excuse them.
2) Viciously and mostly-falsely smear anyone who opposes “progressives”. The play book for this is very long. They’ve gone as far as paying people to pursue fake sexual harassment claims against people until such people stop actively opposing them.
3) Deny vigorously that George Soros has any influence over their activities. This might be believable if they didn’t all do it.
The timing of George’s little entrance in to the Australian media is interesting. George tends not to be overtly involved in owning bits of the media as his non-media interests seem to do a good job, and by having a less-obvious stake in some media outlets he can have them maintain the appearance of impartiality when they side with this other groups, so I’m not entirely sure why he’s being so overt about this purchase, but I have a theory which I’ll get to in a moment.
But first, Nine and Britain’s Daily Mail recently announced that they plan on jointly launching an Australian online version of The Daily Mail to compete with The Guardian’s Australian website. From a political perspective, Nine is reasonably respectable brand and, overall, has seemingly balanced reporting even if a few reporters to lean one way or the other…there is no blatantly obvious institutional bias like there is with the ABC and Fairfax. The Daily Mail has, despite being in Britain, been ahead of the pack on many stories, and broken other stories, about problems and scandals within the Obama administration. It would probably be fair to say that, with The Guardian catering for the left-wing audience, the Australian version of the Daily Mail would (when not indulging in tabloid fluff and entertainment stories) cater to a centre-right audience given their UK history and Nine’s existing brand.
George Soros’ entry in to the Australian market is worrying from the perspective that we already have two overtly left-wing television broadcasters (ABC and SBS) and more left-wing newsish websites and papers (Fairfax, Guardian, The Conversation, Mamamia) than I care to count. The he could be trying to pull Nine out of a state of relative balance or prevent the Daily Mail from being the ideological opposition to The Guardian in Australia that it is in the UK is worrying.
And while I think that is probably part of the game plan from Soros, I think it might also be a warning shot across the bow of The Daily Mail’s British operations as well. At the moment, the Obama administration is in chaos, mainly due to Obamacare being a disaster, but for other reasons as well, and there is a good (not certain by any means, but certainly a better than average) chance that the Republicans…and not just Republicans but truly conservative Republicans could take the House and the Senate in next year’s mid-term elections, potentially giving them the power if they have enough numbers, to override Presidential vetoes and undo much of Obama’s mess. This would be bad for George Soros as Obama is doing a pretty good job from a progressive point of view, especially with Obamacare…it’s a system designed to fail so that progressives can swoop in with a single-payer (aka, entirely government run and taxpayer funded) health system, and all of the associated socialist programs and policies which that can bring with it in the name of “health”. It’s a gigantic socialist government power-grab, and it’s on its way to working, unless Conservatives can stop it soon.
I suspect that part of the reason George Soros is being so visible in his purchase of part of Nine, is that he wants to scare the executives at The Daily Mail, and make sure they know that he could probably buy them out if he wanted to, and if they want him and his groups to leave them alone, then perhaps they should just stop being so good at reporting stories before much of the mainstream US media notices them.
Regardless of the motive, his entry in to the market is a concern, and one which those of us on the conservative side of the aisle should keep an eye on.
December 5th, 2013 at 02:03pm
It has been quite a while since I posted much of anything to this blog and I should probably explain why. Shortly after I returned from Deniliquin following Paul Dix’s funeral, my dear old dog Nattie died. Nattie had been a little bit unwell for a little while prior to this, but I thought she was on the mend, so her passing came as more than a bit of a shock and at a time when I wasn’t really in the best state of mind to deal with it. Ever since then I have wanted to write a eulogy of some sort for Nattie, but have found it impossible to start. To some extent I have felt that by not writing it, I have kept part of Nattie alive and close to me, but of course as time has passed Nattie has not returned and I have started to feel a bit guilty about not writing Nattie’s eulogy sooner. Writing much else on here prior to Nattie’s eulogy seemed wrong, and it seems like the right time now to break this loop of inactivity.
It is safe to say that Nattie’s passing has hit me quite a bit harder than I have been willing to admit.
Nattie was a lovely dog. She was not my first pet as I had a caterpillar (Captain Caterpillar was his name) a couple years before I had Nattie, but she was my first dog. Captain Caterpillar sadly did not live and long-and-prosperous life as he was consumed by a parasite which is apparently commonly used in pest control to prevent caterpillars from reaching maturity and being able to reproduce. Nattie, thankfully did not face such a grizzly end, although it was quite clear that her final hours were not comfortable.
Nattie joined my household in November 2000. At this stage Nattie was an adult dog and we believe she was close to a year-and-a-half old at the time. Originally we thought she was younger than that, but evidence eventually proved us wrong. Prior to coming to live with us, Nattie had been trained to be a companion dog for an elderly lady in Sydney…what exactly this entailed, we don’t know, but she would go berserk if anyone came to the front door and was more than happy to lie quietly on a lap for an extended period of time, much more so than Pebbles is, and so we suspect this was part of it.
Unfortunately the elderly lady died, and Nattie was inherited by one of her nieces…a lady in the Canberra suburb of O’Connor. This lady already had two dogs who were much larger than Nattie, and with whom it seemed Nattie did not get along. The lady was worried about Nattie and eventually decided that the only solution was to sell Nattie so that she would have a chance at a better life elsewhere. We don’t know how much time had passed since the elderly lady in Sydney had passed away, but one Saturday her niece put a classified advertisement in The Canberra Times and we saw it.
If memory serves, the lady was only asking $150 for Nattie as she was more concerned with making sure Nattie went to a good home than with making money out of her sale. I’m not entirely sure that it was $150…I think that’s right but it might have been a slightly different amount…I don’t fully recall as I was 13-years-old and the lady would not discuss financial transactions with a child.
As it was a Saturday, it was cleaning day. Dad stayed at home to continue with the cleaning while Mum and I went to O’Connor to see the dog in the paper and see if she seemed like the right dog for us. I’ll never forget what happened when we got there. The other dogs weren’t interested in our arrival in the slightest, but this little dog ran over to the gate more excitedly than just about any other time I can think of and she pushed her nose through the wire gate and was licking us and sniffing us and was just generally excited to see us. It was as if she knew that we had come to rescue her.
We bought her and took her home where she met Dad and befriended him quite quickly after a moment of apprehension when she first saw him. We suspect that she was mistreated a little bit by a man before we bought her as there were a few odd flinches and similar reactions from Nattie from time-to-time…their weirdest one of all was that she absolutely hated anyone touching any of her feet at first. We helped her grow out of that, but there was still the occasional sign of some mistreatment in her past.
The main reason we thought she was younger than she was when we got her home (apart from the lady in O’Connor not knowing) was her weight. Nattie weighed only two kilograms when we got her. For an adult Jack Russell Terrier that is severely underweight. Eventually, with a good diet, she stabilised at about 6-7kg, although she was a fussy eater and would refuse almost every dog food in existence. With dry dog food she would eventually eat very small amounts of it and pick out the green bits and leave them on the floor, and for a little while she would eat Pal’s Little Champions, but only if the tin was freshly opened…no leftovers accepted. Her diet for most of her life consisted mostly of meats and small amounts of vegetables prepared at home in one way or another, and bones, which she seemed to enjoy.
I should probably note that when we got Nattie, her name was Nellie. That happens to be the name of one of my aunties so it seemed like a bad idea to keep that way, so we changed it to Nattie, which became short for Natalie. Her full name was Natalie Darling Gordon-Stewart, although I did sometimes refer to her as “Nats”. When she was older I quite often called her “Natalie” as it seemed somewhat appropriate for a dog of a mature age.
Nattie’s sleeping arrangements changed many times through her life. At first she slept with me. I remember her first night at home. I had just settled her down at the end of my bed and went over to turn on my clock radio as I always went to bed with the radio on…I pushed the button and the radio started to make some noise…it wasn’t very loud but it startled Nattie. She looked up at the radio with some alarm, the jumped off my bed and bolted downstairs. I had to turn the radio down a bit and coax her back upstairs…it took a few nights but she eventually got used to the radio.
On another night Nattie took exception to the loud snoring coming from my parents’ room and tried to stop Dad from snoring. He awoke, somewhat startled, to a thing on his face and, thinking someone or something was trying to suffocate him, got up with a start and yelling, which had the effect of throwing Nattie half way across the room and scaring her to the point that she hid in the far corner under my bed. The first I knew of this was when Dad woke me up to ask me to get Nattie out from under my bed so that we could comfort her. It took some coaxing with some cheese to get her out…which incidentally is the same way we taught her to use the doggy door…but she came out and didn’t try that again.
At one stage Nattie got in to the habit of barking at 6am. She would stand at the end of my bed and bark. Maybe she was trying to beat the alarm clock (which was set for 7am) or maybe she was awake and wanted to play…either way, that plus her gradual spreading out along the bed meant that her sleeping on my bed was no longer tenable. We moved her to under my bed, but she would get up too rapidly and bang her head on the bottom of my bed, so we moved her to her own bed downstairs, but the number of toilet-related events in the house increased and so Dad built Nattie a kennel for her to sleep in at night. The kennel was a large wooden box which was up on a bench and I think it might have been bolted to the wall…in it was Nattie’s normal bed consisting of a sheepskin in a pillowslip plus a blanket. The entrance to the box was covered with a towel to help minimise drafts and, in winter especially, keep the heat in. During winter, we would give Nattie a covered hot water bottle and place it under her sheepskin, to provide some extra warmth. On more than a few occasions we found that Nattie had been so comfortable in her bed of a night, that she had brought a bone in to the bed to chew on.
Eventually, once we were confident that Nattie’s toilet training had resumed being of a satisfactory competency, we let her sleep inside again…at first with a cut down version of the box, and then a succession of other beds. Towards the end, Nattie’s bed was one of our old lounge chairs and eventually a converted lower-section of a wardrobe in my parents’ room.
Nattie in one of her beds, circa 2005.
Nattie loved her walks, and playing ball. She regularly wore the squeak out on any squeaky toy, and would squeak toys at people in a very cheeky and playful manner. When she was young we would regularly take her on long walks…she was apprehensive of metal light poles after one of the first long walks when she sniffed at one on Ainslie Avenue and got a static shock on her nose from the pole. I also remember one of her other early walks in January 2001 when we took her up Mount Ainslie at dawn, stopping for water at such regular intervals that she would look at the water which we poured out for her as if she thought we had gone crazy for stopping for water yet again. After that walk, Nattie slept for a solid three hours, which was unheard of for her during daylight hours. We had to carry her half of the way home from another of the long walks when she, as she often did, accompanied us to BBC Hardware on Mort Street, Braddon, next to the telephone exchange…it was just a tad too far for her on that day (it was a warm day) and she stopped outside the old Ainslie Primary School and refused to move another inch.
I took her to see the hot air balloons during the annual balloon fiesta on a few occasions. She wasn’t too keen on the hot air balloons, but enjoyed the bacon which was always being cooked there. For a while, every Sunday morning I would take Nattie for a walk in to Civic to the newsagency which was opposite the David Jones end of the Canberra Centre, where we would buy the newspaper and then, on our way back home, walk past the little round cafe where the people there were quite fond of Nattie and would give her some bacon.
Nattie at the 2005 Canberra Balloon Fiesta
Nattie enjoying bacon at the 2006 Balloon Fiesta
Early on in Nattie’s life, she hated the vacuum cleaner with a passion. She would bark at it and bite at it…of course we found this to be funny so we played on it a bit and it became a bit of a game. As time went by, Nattie’s dislike of the vacuum cleaner lessened, but she still enjoyed playing a game of “attack the vacuum monster” if we started using it around her in a playful manner. One day I was using the vacuum cleaner in reverse to get compressed air for a dust-removal task…Nattie came outside to see what I was doing and left quickly when I blew a bit of air on her…I suppose she didn’t like the Vacuum Monster blowing warm air on her. “Oh goodness, it used to try to eat me…now it’s trying to cook me” she might have thought…later she took that as a game as well.
The hair dryer was originally not on her list of favoured things, probably because it only came out after the dreaded bath and was the subject of guilt by association. While Nattie never started to like the bath and would do her best to avoid it, she did enjoy the drying off afterwards and came to enjoy the hair dryer being part of that process, and the ball game which inevitably followed to get her to run around a bit to also help dry her off.
Dad drying Nattie with the hair dryer
Nattie got greyer as time went on. Her dark tan sections of her coat started to grey around the muzzle first, before extending to the rest of her head and the remainder of her coat. Her three tan dots above her thigh on her right side were among the last parts to remain a tan colour.
Nattie in 2007
Nattie with me in 2009
Nattie on one of her many beds in 2011
Nattie in one of her favourite spots. The small upstairs north-facing window of sunshine, also in 2011
In November of 2011, we added another dog to the household, a little puppy named Pebbles. Prior to this, Nattie had been slowing down quite a bit, as could be expected of a senior citizen, and seemed to be going through the motions a bit when it came to activities such as ball games…she seemed to be participating in some of these things more because we enjoyed it and less because she enjoyed it. We got Pebbles because we thought Nattie could use a companion in her older years…Nattie might not have seen it that way at first though…the very first moment our backs were turned, Nattie made a point about making sure Pebbles knew who was boss. There were no injuries, but Pebbles probably got the point when she was shown teeth that were about as big as her head.
Nattie and Pebbles on the day Pebbles arrived
It took a little while, but Pebbles and Nattie seemed to get on reasonably well after a while. Pebbles was clearly more attached to Nattie than Nattie was to Pebbles, but Nattie seemed quite happy to relinquish ball-chasing duties to Pebbles, and they would sleep together fairly comfortably on many occasions. Nattie did occasionally join in a game with Pebbles, but generally found it too tiring to stay in the game for long. This video shows me playing ball with Pebbles, and Nattie joining in for a little while.
When we got Pebbles, Nattie was already showing signs of advancing arthritis in the rear legs, in addition to her eyesight being slowly eroded by cataracts. Despite this, if we went for a walk up to the Campbell High School oval and let them off for a run, Nattie was more than happy to join in and quite enjoyed it, even if for her it was more of a meander than a run.
Unfortunately the trouble for Nattie seemed to set in late in 2012. I remember when she had her annual injection in November 2012 that I raised with the vet that there seemed to be an increased amount of noise when she snored, and that she could really have tummy rubs much any more because it would induce a snorting, in a manner similar to the shortness of breath she used to experience when she was young. The vet wasn’t too concerned at the time, and said we should keep an eye on it…it wasn’t particularly uncommon but if it got worse, it might be necessary to drain some fluid.
Over the following year, Nattie’s willingness to go for walks reduced and she found it difficult to walk very far. Given her arthritis and age, this wasn’t a big concern either. Overall, Nattie just seemed to be ageing. If my eyesight was failing and I had arthritis in my leg joints, I probably wouldn’t want to walk all that far either.
In late August of this year, Nattie’s increased noise while snoring got worse, and expanded to her everyday breathing. Her breathing seemed to become quite laboured and her energy levels dropped markedly. I took her up to see the vet (Peter, her original vet, had returned to the practice after a period of semi-retirement) and he was concerned by what he observed. There were a number of possibilities as to the cause of her condition, the most likely of which was a hayfever-like allergic reaction…Nattie had suffered from them before and it was the only possibility which was treatable. Peter gave her a cortisone shot which was supposed to last a few days, with the idea being that if it was an allergic reaction, then cortisone should reduce the swelling and therefore help with her breathing. It worked, so Peter gave her a longer-lasting shot to hopefully ride out the time in which the allergen was present. It seemed to work…Nattie was much more active and her breathing was quiet.
Before I went to Deniliquin on the Wednesday for Paul Dix’s funeral, Nattie seemed reasonably well. There was a small amount of noise in her snoring, but nothing more than had been there a month prior. It was, if memory serves, the third week of the longer-lasting shot and it should have had another week to run, so to say I was stunned when I got back home late on the Thursday and found that Nattie was now worse than before I left would be an understatement. According to Mum and Dad, the relapse had happened in the space of a few hours on the Thursday.
The cortisone should have still been working if it was all down to an allergic reaction. We all knew this meant that there was almost certainly something more serious happening, but we didn’t say it. On the Friday, Nattie was clearly quite uncomfortable…her breathing was very laboured and she was extremely sluggish. Mum and I both took her up to see Peter (Dad had to work) and he was very concerned…he explained the situation, explaining how it seemed that a tumour was most-probably blocking her airway and that the only way to really know for sure how bad it was and whether it was operable would be to give Nattie a general anaesthetic which, due to her age and her breathing difficulties, he was hesitant to do because her chances of survival were negligible from such a procedure. He gave her a booster shot of cortisone to try and reduce the swelling a bit and, without saying it in so many words, effectively told us that it wouldn’t solve the problem, but would make Nattie a tad more comfortable for a short time and would give us time to discuss what we wanted to do and maybe even seek a second opinion if we so desired.
Dad was on a late shift that night…I think he came home for dinner but I can’t really recall. I seem to recall that we discussed taking her in to see Peter first thing in the morning, but I don’t recall if that was in person or over the phone. What I remember is that, at first, the shot did help Nattie sleep a bit easier. She was still clearly very unwell, but at least she wasn’t struggling for breath all the time.
Nattie dozing on the night of September 27, 2013
Peter had informed us that he would be available by phone during the evening if we needed to talk as he had some late work to do at the surgery. As the night went on, Nattie’s breathing got worse again. We did out best to comfort her, but it was a very difficult night as we helplessly watched on as she would repeatedly manage to doze off, only for her breathing to slow and for her to wake up with a start to try and catch her breath. It was as torturous for us as I’m sure the experience must have been for Nattie.
Pebbles checking up on Nattie
Pebbles had showing concern for Nattie for quite some time, and was quite agitated on this night by the state of Nattie’s breathing. It was nice to see Pebbles trying to look after Nattie, but difficult at the same time to try and keep Pebbles calm as she seemed to be a bit distressed about Nattie.
I recall calling Peter at one stage during the evening, around 8:00 or 8:30, and him saying that he would call us back after 10:30 to see how Nattie was at that stage. In the meantime I believe he was dealing with a dog which had a broken leg. Dad got home from work around 11pm and it was very noticeable how much worse Nattie had gotten in just a few hours. Peter hadn’t called, and so I tried a few times over the course of the hour. We figured that he may have gone home after the surgery, which would have been quite reasonable considering that he opens again at 9am on a Saturday, and we decided that we would stay up with Nattie all night…we knew that we didn’t really have a choice and we were going to have to put Nattie down, and thought we would stay up with her through the night, and take her up to see Peter in the morning.
Well, just after midnight I decided to try Peter’s surgery number one more time…so my surprise the receptionist/nurse answered…they had just finished operating on the dog with the broken leg. Peter was concerned about Nattie and asked us to come up and see him right away. We were a bit hesitant, partially out of concern for Peter given how long he’d been working, and partially out of not really wanting to let Nattie go, but Nattie was very unwell so we agreed. Pebbles was concerned when we left with Nattie…we took Nattie up in a box with her favourite blanket in it as this seemed like the best way to keep her comfortable on the journey, and Peter and his assistant met us in the waiting room. I put Nattie on one of the chairs in the waiting room and we all kept her company while Peter examined her…it was very nice of Peter to see Nattie in the waiting room as this didn’t stress her out in the way the yellow table of the examination room would have.
Unfortunately Nattie was in very bad shape and we had to put her down. Nattie stayed on the chair the whole time. We all took a few moments to say goodbye to her. I stayed with her, patting her and talking to her, and generally keeping her company, while Mum and Dad were standing behind me. I was holding Nattie as Peter gave her the injection…I was amazed at how quickly it took effect and reduced to a tearful wreck at the same time. My lovely old dog was gone, and it was awful…utterly awful.
Peter’s assistant got us all a cup of tea…I can’t say that I drank much of the tea. We were all very upset, and Peter did his best to help us with our grief. I remember having a chat with him…I remember some of his words of wisdom…not all of them, but I do remember him saying at some stage that he didn’t think Nattie would have made it through the night and it was probably for the best for all of us that we had the opportunity to say goodbye. It was comforting having Peter there, and I think, in a way, although Nattie did like to try to bite Peter whenever the chance arose, there seemed to be a mutual respect between them, and I think Nattie would be glad that Peter was her doctor at the end.
We took Nattie home. It was very sombre. We let Pebbles see Nattie and she seemed to be relieved…the tension that Pebbles had been exhibiting all night was gone…whether she realised Nattie was gone or whether she just saw that Nattie wasn’t having breathing difficulties, I don’t know.
Nattie stayed in her box in the laundry for about half the day, and I think we all visited her a couple times during the day. By early-mid afternoon Dad finished building her a little wooden coffin. We buried Nattie in the backyard with a sheepskin and her favourite blanket, not far from the aviary, which Nattie seemed to like to look at.
Nattie’s final resting place in the back garden
I miss Nattie. I miss her cheeky and sneaky ways of obtaining food (or hiding food). I miss her curling up on my lap or taking up half of my chair when she wanted to lie down next to me. I miss her excitement, no matter how little distance she could cover, whenever I picked up the lead or said “walkies”. I miss how happy she was when I would come home and how, in her older years, she might sleep through my arrival and wake up a little later and still be excited to see me. I miss the waddling walk she would do, as well as her busy walk. I miss how she seemed to walk sideways when she was on the leash. I miss my chats with her. Basically, I just miss her. She was lovely. But I’m also glad that she isn’t suffering any more.
I had almost thirteen years with Nattie, and I dare say that thanks to Peter Burgess’ veterinary work, I probably had a few more weeks with her than I might otherwise have had. I will always be thankful for the time I had with Nattie. May she rest in peace.
Soon, we think, we will consider getting another puppy. Not to replace Nattie, but to help keep Pebbles company, and to add a bit more lovable chaos to our lives. It took Pebbles a little while to get over Nattie, and she was very upset when we buried Nattie, and while she has settled down now, it seems that she could benefit from some doggy company…she needs a playmate.
So, thank you for everything Nattie. I couldn’t ask for a more wonderful companion, and I wouldn’t try. Thank you.
December 5th, 2013 at 07:53am
An email to 2UE’s George Moore and Paul B. Kidd
Good morning George and Paul,
Quentin Bryce’s comments about a republic shocked me a little bit. While she is personally entitled to her view and I agree with her to a point, I can’t see it being worth the expense with our relatively small population.
What shocked me though is that she said what she said while holding the office she holds. To have the Queen’s representative advocate replacing the Queen as head of state is untenable. Quentin Bryce should resign. She can not faithfully represent the Queen if she holds the view that Australia should be a republic.
November 23rd, 2013 at 09:19am
It was announced this morning on 2QN that Paul Dix’s funeral will be held on Wednesday afternoon at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Deniliquin.
The service will commence at 1pm on Wednesday the 25th of September.
The funeral service is being arranged by Riverina Funerals. More details are available by contacting them on 03 5881 5111.
An announcement was also made to the effect that the family has requested that people do not bring flowers, but make a charitable donation instead. I did not catch the details of which charity will be the beneficiary of this, but there will be a collection available on the day.
Jock’s Journal have since been contacted by Paul’s wife Margaret, who has advised them that people are invited to the Deniliquin RSL following the service, and people who worked with Paul over the years are invited to join the family for Paul’s burial at 4pm, at a location which has not been specified.
September 23rd, 2013 at 01:47pm
It is with much regret and sadness that I have to pass on the news that the voice of Deniliquin, Paul Dix, passed away this morning after a short illness. He was aged 80.
Samuel with Paul Dix on the 19th of December, 2008
Paul had been the breakfast host at 2QN Deniliquin for about 51-and-a-half years, and had worked for 3MA in Mildura before this. In recent years Paul had also pre-recorded an afternoon program for 3NE in Wangaratta after finishing his 2QN show.
In a statement, the General Manager of 2QN’s parent company, Frank Davidson, had the following to say:
To say Dixy will be missed is an understatement as he was and always will be an integral part of our team.
Paul’s many friends and listeners in our coverage area will miss waking up with Dixy each morning and at this sad time our thoughts and condolences are with his wife Margaret and the family.
Further details as they come to hand will be advised and once again our thoughts at this sad time are with the Dix family.
Paul will be very sorely missed in Deni and beyond. He was a very kind man who always had time for a chat and had a great sense of humour which made most things seem better. I will always fondly cherish the brief time I spent working with Paul, and will cherish his ongoing friendship even more. The memory of him appearing at the radio station’s back door in his tiny little car, as happy as could be, just before 5am each day, is an image which will stay with me forever.
Paul is a true gem of Australian history. It is a real shame that, due to the fact that he spent so long in a regional town, that he doesn’t have anywhere near as much name recognition in the wider community as people who have spent similar amounts of time in Sydney radio. To an extent though, I think Paul would have been happy about that…he was known and loved by a specific community, and he cared about that community.
My sincere condolences to Paul’s wife Margaret and family, to all of the staff at 2QN and 3NE, Paul’s friends, and the broader community of Deniliquin.
I would wish Paul and peaceful rest, but somehow I think he’ll be up at 3:30am every day to do the breakfast show on the great radio station in the sky, and heaven will be a much more interesting place because of it.
September 20th, 2013 at 02:29pm
This is not something I was expecting to see parked at the Dickson shops at lunch time: a car with the logo of 2WG Wagga Wagga all over it.
It’s a long way to go for lunch, although I have done it before myself…still, it would be odd if somebody took a company car for a two-and-a-half hour drive just for lunch.
I wonder what they’re here for?
September 17th, 2013 at 12:45pm
I honestly never thought the day would come, but it seems that recent poor health has forced Paul’s hand and he is calling it a day on what can only be described as a truly remarkable career.
Paul Dix in the 2QN studios in 2011
For a tad over 51 years (the 51st anniversary of Paul’s arrival in Deni was in March of this year, not last year as reported by The Weekly Times), Paul has been the breakfast host at radio 2QN in Deniliquin. 51 years in any job is remarkable, but even more remarkable in the radio industry where many people don’t stay for 51 weeks in the same job, let alone years.
Unfortunately Paul’s health has not been the best in recent times and he has been forced to give up the regular 3:30am alarm. Paul is currently on sick leave but I gather that he is expected back on the air before he does retire, and I personally wonder if his retirement will be a full retirement, or if he might continue to do some radio work either on a fill-in basis or perhaps continue to do his pre-recorded Sunday breakfast show.
Paul is currently the longest-serving host of a single show in Australian radio. I don’t think it’s a record which will be beaten any time soon, and it’s safe to say that Deni won’t quite be the same place in the morning without Dixie’s dulcet tones greeting the town each morning.
At this stage I don’t have a definitive date for Paul’s retirement, but I will let you know as soon as I know. I’m sure there will be a lot of people who will want to wish Paul good health and good retirement between now and then.
I had the great pleasure of interviewing Paul on Samuel’s Persiflage in 2011 about his experiences in radio and his memories of Deni, among other things. More importantly I had the honour of working with Paul on a number of occasions through 2008 and 2009, and learned a lot from him. It will be very sad to see him leave radio, but if it helps with his health, then I wish him all the best.
September 12th, 2013 at 07:30pm
I was going to write a post similar to my AFL post summarising my thoughts on each team and what is likely to unfold through the finals, but as the NRL finals haven’t started yet, I just see too many uncertain matches and permutations for me to be able to figure out where everyone will be at each step. Instead, what I will do is put in some tips for this week, make a couple quick observations about the teams in the finals, and then come back with a more detailed look at the remaining teams next week.
This should be a very good match. Both teams are capable of playing very good football, but in tight situations I think the Rabbitohs are more likely to find a way to score, and the storm are more likely to produce a mind-numbing error. Back-to-back losses are rare for the Storm so I expect them to win in the 2nd week…and I’d certainly be tipping them if they lost last week.
This was almost impossible to pick. The Cowboys have a heap of momentum having won their last six matches (including one victory over the Sharks), which is much better than any other team in the competition, but despite this I have been more impressed by Cronulla’s fairly consistent performances. The Sharks might not always win, but they always (since late July, at least) seem to put in a very good effort. I’d be willing to trust the Sharks’ effort over the Cowboys’ recent winning-streak, especially seeing as I don’t particularly like tipping the Cowboys after they have won a few games in a row, as they seem to have a habit of putting in a terrible performance after a string of good ones. That said, if the Cowboys win this match, they might turn out to be very hard to beat through the rest of the finals.
Roosters V Sea Eagles
Both of these sides are a nightmare to tip as you can never be sure whether they are going to have one of their good days or one of their bad days. I don’t think either side can win the grand final because I don’t think either side can consistently play well enough to get that far. This match could go either way and it wouldn’t surprise me, but I’m going with Manly because they lost last week and the Roosters didn’t.
I’m a Bulldogs fan and I’d love to be able to tell you that I’m confident that the Dogs will win this, but truthfully I’m always slightly worried about games against Newcastle. The Dogs have been patchy this year and have lost to Newcastle twice, but with a small number of exceptions, the Knights have generally either won by a big margin or lost by a small margin this year which tells me that the Knights can’t usually maintain their intensity for a full match if the other side is competitive. I expect the Bulldogs to try a little bit harder this week seeing as it is a sudden-death final, and so I expect the Bulldogs to win by a small amount, but I also won’t be surprised if the Knights scrape home.
At the moment I’m expecting the Rabbitohs to win the grand final, but the Sharks and Cowboys are both good chances too. I don’t think anyone else can win.
If you are going to have a punt on the finals I’d suggest TAB NRL Finals betting. They currently have the Rabbitohs and Roosters $3.75 premiership favourites, and they don’t think the Sharks or Cowboys have much hope, $21 and $23 respectively. I might have to take them up on that. As for this week’s tips…well they seem to agree with everything except the Sea Eagles beating the Roosters.
September 12th, 2013 at 01:04am
For a few reasons I forgot all about submitting tips for the first week of the AFL finals last week, so instead of providing tips on a week-by-week basis, what I am going to do is analyse what remains of the finals by giving you my thoughts on the remaining teams and who I think is likely to wind up as the grand final winner of the 2013 AFL Premiership Season.
Geelong have surprised me throughout the year with some very good performances. I have not really thought their form was good enough to win as many matches as they did, and I was expecting them to fall apart late in the season, but they did not. They have been quite consistent and I shouldn’t underestimate them.
Geelong lost to Fremantle in the first week of the finals. I was surprised by this and put it down to a couple factors:
1. Geelong were playing their first ever home final. The moment got the better of them and they weren’t as focussed as usual.
2. Fremantle have been playing very well of late and reached the finals with a head full of steam. They simply had too much momentum for Geelong to match in the first week of the finals.
Geelong will play Port Adelaide on Friday night. Port have not played a Friday night match this year and have been in poor form for the last few weeks, and in my view only won on the weekend because Collingwood played terribly. As much as Port Adelaide have been a decent team this year, Geelong are a better side and will win, but won’t be able to overcome Hawthorn in the following week.
Port Adelaide are a very improved side this year, but they should not have won last week. In my view they only did so because Collingwood had a shocker. Port deserve to be in the finals, but will not win this week against Geelong.
Sydney have been consistent again this year in the main, but haven’t been quite as good as last year. They played poorly against Hawthorn last week, but that was partially because Hawthorn are simply a better side by a very big margin.
This week Sydney verse Carlton and, despite the fact that last week’s form (and even Sydney’s form in the last few weeks of the regular season) might indicate otherwise, I expect Sydney to rebound this week and to defeat Carlton. It won’t be a big victory, but they should win. After that Sydney will verse Fremantle for a spot in the Grand Final. Fremantle are in better form in my view and, with a combination of fresh legs from a week off for Fremantle and a tiring victory over Carlton for Sydney, Fremantle should knock Sydney out of the finals in the third week.
Carlton should not have reached the finals. They only got in because Essendon were prevented from being in the finals by a fairly peculiar decision, and Carlton had to make up the numbers in the top eight.
Carlton played well last week, but sometimes it feels like a team plays their “grand final effort” in a round of the finals and has nothing left the following week, and I think they did that last week. Carlton will be competitive against Sydney this week as Sydney are out-of-form in my view, but they won’t be able to beat Sydney.
Hawthorn have been impressive all year except for one very uncharacteristic loss to Richmond and an inability to beat Geelong. This should make for an interesting likely showdown between Hawthorn and Geelong in the third week of the finals.
I expect Hawthorn to finally defeat Geelong in week three of the finals as I’m not sure Geelong can be consistent enough to carry good form through that far, and Hawthorn will be freshly rested as should be too good for Geelong.
After this I expect Hawthorn to come up against Fremantle in the grand final. Hawthorn are a better side than Fremantle (or any other team in the competition for that matter) and I think Hawthorn will beat them (or anyone else).
Fremantle are, to me at least, the real surprise packet of the season. Port Adelaide have also been surprisingly good, but Fremantle have beaten them for consistency, and I have to give a lot of credit to coach Ross Lyon for this.
I expect Fremantle to meet Sydney in the third week of the finals. It is my view that Fremantle will be able to continue their great form in to this match, and Sydney will have used up too much effort in overcoming Carlton, so Fremantle will win this match and make their way through to the grand final.
I expect Fremantle to meet Hawthorn in the grand final. I believe Hawthorn are a class above Fremantle and should defeat Freo comfortably, but I would also have to admit that if anyone could challenge Hawthorn, it is Fremantle.
Hawthorn should defeat Fremantle, but if something goes awry before then and Fremantle verse someone else in the grand final, then Fremantle could win.
The grand final should be a contest between Hawthorn and Fremantle. Hawthorn should win this and I am tipping Hawthorn to be the winner of the 2013 grand final, however Fremantle should beat anyone else if Hawthorn don’t make the grand final for whatever reason.
That said, Hawthorn are my tip as 2013 AFL premiers.
If you’re considering betting on any of the AFL finals or on the premier, then make sure you check out TAB’s AFL Finals betting page. I see that at the moment they agree with me that Hawthorn and Fremantle are the most likely to win the grand final, offering $2.25 and $3.75 respectively.
September 11th, 2013 at 08:56pm
I’m very pleased to see Tony Abbott start his speech by acknowledging that the power of government does not belong to him or to Kevin Rudd, or any political party, but that it belongs to the people of Australia, and he is there to govern for them, to the mandate for which it was elected (or as Tony put it “a government which says what it means, and means what it says”).
It was nice to see a short speech from Tony, although I do wonder if the line about Labor’s low primary vote was necessary. Tony tends to speak at his best when he is succinct, so it was very nice to see him keep the speech short and sweet.
A big victory to the Coalition tonight. It’s going to be a big three years ahead. There are still some seats to be decided and most of the Senate. I should note, regarding the Senate, that current ABC modelling is incorrect…it has only got one new Senate seat for the Coalition when the AEC quite clearly shows them holding at least three quotas across NSW and the ACT alone. I trust this will be fixed in due course as the Senate is clearly not the focus of tonight.
I, with great gladness and happiness, welcome Tony Abbott and his team as the incoming government, and I look forward to the three years which are ahead of us. It is my sincere hope that this new Liberal/National Coalition government surpasses the expectations of Australians and brings about more terms of government afterwards…but nothing can be taken for granted, and tomorrow, and more importantly once the Governor-General swears-in the new government, it is time to start governing in a clear, coherent, and transparent manner.
To the success and stability of an incoming, Tony Abbott-led, conservative government.
(And just before I go, a special congratulations to Fiona Scott, the candidate of much sex-appeal in the NSW seat of Lindsay, who has ousted Labor’s David Bradbury. Clearly the nonsensical claims of misogyny against Tony Abbott didn’t wash in that electorate, or in many other places for that matter.)
September 7th, 2013 at 10:25pm
And I thought Rob Oakeshott’s lengthy speech last year was painful when he rambled on and on and on about all of the factors which did and didn’t lead to his decision to support Julia Gillard as Prime Minister after the last election. Kevin Rudd’s speech tonight is worse.
He has said that he, in accordance with the rules he set down, will not contest the Labor Party leadership, so I suppose he knows that this is the last chance he has to get free national airtime. He could be there all year speaking.
Still, he did say once before that he wouldn’t contest the Labor Party leadership, and look where he is today, and his last statement just now that “you won’t hear my voice in public affairs for some time” tells me that, unfortunately, you can’t rule out a Kevin Rudd comeback in about two and a half years time.
I should not that I was very annoyed with the cheap shot Kevin Rudd took at his Liberal opponent in the seat of Griffith, Dr. Bill Glasson, but he’s stopped talking now so if I can avoid seeing him again (years, preferably) for a while, I’ll let it slide.
I did get a chuckle when 2GB cut away from Kevin Rudd’s speech and, during the commercial break, ran a commercial for Foxtel containing the fictional politician “The Member for Waffling” who was saying “waffle waffle waffle”. It seemed apt.
September 7th, 2013 at 10:00pm
And with that, Tony Abbott is now Prime Minister-elect.
Time for a celebratory coffee or three I think.
Three cheers for Tony Abbott!
September 7th, 2013 at 09:41pm
Everyone has now called the election for the Liberal/National Coalition. I am personally pleased to see Barnaby Joyce successfully jump from the Senate to the House Of Representatives by winning New England with a massive majority.
Elsewhere it is good to see Tony Abbott increase his lead in Warringah and Zed Seselja (almost certainly) retain the Liberal Senate seat in the ACT, taking over from Gary Humphries. Angus Taylor has easily won Hume, and Wyatt Roy has easily retained Longman.
Peter Beattie looks very unlikely to win Forde, making his return to politics one of the shortest in living memory.
Eden-Monaro will probably come down to postal votes and I doubt we’ll see a final result for a few days. Liberal’s Peter Hendy leads Labor’s Mike Kelly on first preferences, but is behind on estimated final preferences. It will be a close one.
Alas in the two ACT seats, the Labor incumbents have retained their seats, but both Liberal candidates appear to have closed the margin a little bit.
Kevin Rudd is behind by about 1,000 votes on first preferences in Griffith, but appears to have retained it clearly on estimated final preferences. I suspect the preference flow won’t be as clear-cut and we won’t have a final result there for a couple days. Overall it looks like Katter’s Australia Party and The Greens have one seat each, with one independent.
Most of the Senate is still too early to call.
September 7th, 2013 at 09:37pm