Archive for January, 2011

Some stats from Lawsie’s return

Apart from the thousands of people who were listening to Lawsie over the airwaves across the country this morning, his online audience exceeded expectations quite significantly. The 2SM webstream peaked at 523 listeners (well in excess of the original limit of 300) and stayed around that number for most of the final hour of the show.

Lawsie also rattled off a list of countries which had open connections to the webstream. I didn’t jot them down but I did count at least eight.

Lawsie’s signature theme music also accompanied him. Both El Presidente at the top of the show and Roger Miller’s Less Of Me at the end.

I honestly can’t tell you how great it is to have Lawsie back on the air. Since his departure at the end of 2007, the radio landscape has (with no disrespect to anyone else in the industry, because nobody can be expected to replace Lawsie…everyone who has tried has done their own show, but Lawsie is irreplaceable as he is a legend in his own right) had a gaping hole in it. Something just feels right about the world now that John is back.

I know that a lot of my readership is in the US (and I know that some people in the US were listening to John this morning), so to draw a comparison for you, John Laws leaving radio would be like Rush Limbaugh leaving radio. It just isn’t the same without them.

Also a big hello to Frankster who offered to help me out when I wasn’t one of the lucky 300 people on the original 2SM webstream.

Anyhoo, I must toddle off. Much like the day on which Lawsie left 2UE all those years ago, I have to go to work at a different time of the day to when Lawsie’s show is on…and time, right now, is of the essence for me. I have a backlog of other stuff to write about which I’ll try to get to tonight. No promises, except a promise that I’ll try.

Samuel

January 31st, 2011 at 12:26pm

John Laws is back on the air!

The king of Australian radio, John Laws, is back on the air today, with his new home being 2SM in Sydney. John is being heard on Bill Caralis’ Super Radio Network and a few other stations.

Unfortunately I missed the start of the show as 2SM’s webstream was at capacity for quite some time and I wasn’t one of the fortunate 300 people who had tuned in to their stream at that time. 2SM have since increased the capacity of the stream to 1000 listeners so I am now enjoying Lawsie’s dulcet tones.

It’s a great day in Australian radio. Having Lawsie back on the air proves that sometimes when you lose things which you treasure, you’ve really only misplaced them, and they’ll be just as great when you find them again.

Samuel

1 comment January 31st, 2011 at 10:47am

Jim Ball resigns from 2GB and MTR

Jim Ball quit 2GB yesterday afternoon. Warren Moore, who is unexpectedly sitting it for Jim right now, delivered the news as an off the cuff “Jim’s decided not to be a part of the program this year” as he threw to an ad break…which is a bit less than Jim deserves. Ben Fordham heaped praise on his predecessor Jason Morrison when he took over the Drive show last week, but Jim only gets a few seconds of “he ain’t here no more”…doesn’t seem fair really.

Jim has put an announcement up on his website, sighting both the overnight hours and the fact that Ben Fordham got the Drive Show gig over him as reasons.

2GB’s popular overnight host Jim Ball, due back on air Monday morning, has resigned from the station, effective immediately.

Ball who has been off on holiday after filling in for Ray Hadley over the summer break was due back on air at midnight. He says he was trying to catch a few hours sleep on Sunday afternoon after prepping his program for Monday and just couldn’t nod off.

It was then, at that moment, after 11 years on overnight radio including 2 years at 2UE, he just decided that he didn’t have another overnight program left in him, rang the program director, Ian Holland and delivered the bad news.

“..The hours are the toughest on the station apart from breakfast. I suppose working Ray’s shift over summer spoilt me a bit. Not only were the hours civilised but also I had a great team of people helping put the program together. On overnights, I do all my own research, writing and prep, panel and presentation and eventually after 11 years you just hit the wall, and think what the hell am I doing this for?”

Ball has constantly produced high ratings for the station in the mid to high twenties and low thirties.

Another factor that pushed him to make the decision was the appointment of Ben Fordham to the Drive program several weeks ago. “..Appointing someone to a prime shift with little or next to no experience in talk radio, except on a fill in basis, or someone without any demonstrated or proven ability, or ratings success in talk radio does seem rather odd to say the least..”

It seems that years of delivering results counts for nothing, and the Fordham decision crystallised Ball’s thinking that he’s wasting his time. The hours, the slog and the sacrifice seemed to have been for nothing.

I hope that this is only a temporary vacation from radio and that Jim pops up on the dial again in the near future (perhaps in a nicer timeslot, eh Jim?). Jim is too good a talent and too clear a thinker for him to not be on the air.

This certainly leaves a gaping hole in my radio listening with both Jim Ball and Mike Jeffreys absent from the overnight shift this week. Jeffreys is on the 8pm to midnight shift on 2UE at the moment and is due back on overnights next week, but that doesn’t really help me this week.

Good luck Jim. I hope to hear you on the air again soon.

Samuel

5 comments January 31st, 2011 at 12:34am

The cuts to “green” programs

I’m not in the least bit happy about Julia Gillard’s proposed flood tax, and I have a few reasons for that which I’ll try to get to when I have a bit more time, however there was one thing which Julia Gillard did which pleased me greatly.

Julia’s spending cuts, whilst they should go further, are a very good start, especially the cuts to the so-called “green” or “climate” programs. It’s very nice to see, even if Julia won’t say it aloud, that Julia recognises that wasting money on programs which try to limit the non-existent global warming is quite a silly thing to do.

When I saw Green Senator Christine Milne on the television last night shrieking about how awful it is that these programs are being cut, and putting on an hysterical rant about climate change causing the floods (that one gave me a good laugh), I was the happiest that I’ve been all week. Seeing The Greens being put back in to their lunatic fringe box is delightful, and seeing that Julia Gillard was responsible for that…well it’s definitely a good start…if she can drop the flood tax and scrap the NBN instead then I’ll send her flowers.

Samuel

January 28th, 2011 at 11:17am

Maritz’s thoughts on being Australian

Samuel writes: Maritz submitted this a few hours ago under the title “of for goodly the australianings”, but I think the substitute title which I placed on it makes a tad more sense. The article is unedited…I’m far too tired to try and edit Maritz’s writing, especially seeing as if I’m reading it correctly, she’s had a bit to drink. I can make sense of enough of it to publish it, so I hope you can read it as well.

Dearly on the day Australia of happy which has do of come to.

It is day today of the much happy as for the country lovely Australia is for the ceblrations and is much lovely country I am proud to be of citizen.

I am from original the much wonderful country Russia which is land of birth and of still do am have many wonderful relatives of doing the live there in many place for different and wonderful. It is the lovely country but am not as much wonderful as Australia which is land of proud to have done do of come to be of the citizens and the workings here. This is country of the safety.

The Russia did do have the bombs of recent and was much bad and I am did do of speak to with Mother of Russia on telephone for afterwards as upset she was much and was for me too as I am still lovely country of Russia but it does not have the safely ness of the much wonderful Australia country which is muchly safe and fortunately. For here wonderful.

I am did do of the leavings the Russia much and many years ago and did do original the travels to England but then came of to Australia as is having similar lovely lady of the Queen but is also muchly different country of the friendly and also of the place for the workings which I am did was muchly happy to have do come here for the workings and was having doubtsing of how much long time I would be do of stay as I did do think that England Britain was the wonderful country of muchly workings and goodly people of the politeness but the Australia was much wonderful and better and so I am did do of the stay and did the workings for Nice Mr. Boss and am now doing workings for Mrs. Boss of the night time tephelphone answerings and am do feel of muchly safely and value for even as of foreign from different country which does not have the problem of the people as I am do treat as of same many times exceptings for the speaking which sometimes when I am do of speak I do the Russian which is of the confusions for not the people of speaking the Russians who are only of do speak the Englishes.

I am was muchly proud to have done do become of the citizen Australia some now time ago in previous and am the still muchly proud to have done do of come and I am do sing of advance anthem song loudly on the day of Australia.

I am also to have the cookery for the people of neighbours today on day of much lovely and am doing much special cookings of the sausages in the sauces of pepper and cinnamon which is much lovely. We are did have the lunchings and had also some staying for later on when did do come for dinner of Mr. Boss of previously gardenings and also Mrs. Boss of tephlephones and was also for doing the drinkery. I am do usual have the vodka of the Russia but was today for to do have special the drinking beers which are different and was perhaps of the more. Nice Cat Slavcatchski did have the special fishes but not the drinkery although did do have of some the vodka as is of his taste he does do like sometimes of special treat.

The day is much lovely for special lovely day of wonderful country Australia and we are to be shining and waving the flag for tonight and all for future as is much lovely and winderful.

Please to be having the day of wonderfuls.

From Maritz
Ms. Maritzkrozlavsky Throrglasnishozly

January 27th, 2011 at 12:55am

Senior Moment

I’m often jokingly told by people around my age that I come across as being a 70-year-old due to large differences in interests and views, and today I have to wonder if they might be on to something it terms of early-onset dementia, for last night I had quite the senior moment.

I had made myself a cup of coffee and retrieved a punnet of blueberries from the fridge, and was preparing to watch a DVD. I had placed the DVD case on my chair and went back to the bench to collect my coffee, which I did and brought it over to my chair. I then returned to the bench and collected the blueberries and put them on the arm of my chair.

I then went over to the television and turned it on, followed by the DVD player which, rather than turning on with the power button, I turned on with the “open/close” button, which both turns the DVD player on and opens the disc tray, saving me from an extra button press.

I went back to my chair, picked up the DVD case and took it over to the DVD player. I went to open the DVD case when it suddenly occurred to me that I was not holding a DVD case, but rather a punnet of blueberries, and that it would probably not be a good idea to place the blueberries in to the DVD player.

So I took the punnet of blueberries back to my chair and was going to pick up the DVD case, but it wasn’t there. This was baffling as it has been there only a couple minutes ago. After a quick search, I found it…it was on the bench. It seems that on my way back to the bench to collect the blueberries after delivering my coffee to my chair, I had moved the DVD case for no apparent reason.

Nattie, who was in her bed at the time, was watching me and giving me a rather odd look. I suppose that from her perspective it did look rather odd that I was walking back and forth across the room and moving objects around many more times than was necessary.

My very own senior moment. It’s not the first, and it won’t be the last, but it’s certainly the most amusing of them to date.

Samuel

January 26th, 2011 at 11:54am

Happy Australia Day

Happy Australia Day to you all. I hope that the day is joyous in patriotic celebrations for you.

Celebrations of this day do of course come in many forms. For me, the celebration comes in the form of my pride in being a part of this great country, and the freedoms which that affords me. My planned activities for the day include going for walks with Nattie, and watching an episode of Inspector Morse, and as always, enjoying our wonderful national anthem, Advance Australia Fair, as sung by the best in the business, Julie Anthony.

I invite you to be upstanding with me for the national anthem.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.


Download MP3.

Happy Australia Day!

Samuel

January 26th, 2011 at 07:20am

On anthems, flags and republics

It seems that every year, without fail, around Australia Day a national discussion starts on one or more of these topics and that, every year, without fail, the same arguments are trotted out. Some people want us to change our national anthem, some people want a new flag and some want to sever ties with the Monarchy. All of the proposed changes seem to tie back to a dislike of the Monarchy…and I keep wondering why.

At the moment we have a system which works. We are governed by our elected governments of various jurisdictions with the aide of a bunch of people who sign bits of paper generated by and for the people we elect. In essence, the only negative effect of our Monarchy is that we pay a whole heap of people to do little more than sign papers, drink tea, and keep a porch light on in case the Prime Minister decides to pop in for a visit. This may be wasteful, but no more so (and in fact far less) than the overt extravagance of our public service. But the arguments against the Monarchy were never really economic ones so we’ll let this one slide.

Perhaps it’s the seemingly widely held fear of having Charles as the future king, but he would have no more influence than his mother does, so unless the fear is of seeing him on coins, I don’t see the problem here either.

Admittedly I prefer the model of the republic used by the United States over the model of our Monarchy, but I don’t think it would work here. For one thing I don’t think it can work particularly well without a larger population and at least double our current number of states, and apart from that I don’t think enough Australians are politically interested enough for a system which contains an elected head of state to be workable. That’s not to say that Australians are uninterested in politics, just that not enough people seem to be interested enough to deal with the differences between the House of Reps and the Senate half the time, let alone another arm of the government.

As such, we have a system which works well enough for us and is in no real need of change, so I see no good reason to change, and with a change to our system of government out of the question, the cases for changing our national flag or anthem are dealt serious blows, albeit not fatal.

There are a couple main reasons left for changing the flag. The first, somewhat left over from a change of government system, is that if we’re not really under the control of the Monarch, we shouldn’t bear her mark (the Union Jack). Well that’s just absurd. The Union Jack does not brand us as being a part of the United Kingdom…it is a sign of our heritage, of the beginnings of our nation. Much like the Southern Cross marks our bit of the sky and therefore our bit of the planet, and Union Jack is a representation of our start as a nation. It is an important reminder of our heritage.

The other main notion is that the flag should be more representative of Aboriginal people. There is also the occasional mention of our flag being “ugly”, but when you dig in to that argument it tends to be nothing more than a lead-in to the “not representative of Aborigines” argument (and when it comes to ugly flags, have you seen the Aboriginal flag?). This whole argument is easily sorted. Aborigines are citizens of this country and our existing flag is the symbol of the country. Simple. Apart from that, Aborigines have their own flag which, although I can’t fathom what precisely they need it for, it exists in a similar way to the flags of the states and territories, as a symbol of something within the nation. These flags all live under the greater banner of our national flag which represents them all on the international stage.

So the flag doesn’t need to change, and we reach the national anthem.

We’ve already changed it once. Originally we had “God Save The King/Queen”, and now given the lack of influence on us a nation from the Monarch, we have the more apt “Advance Australia Fair”. For some reason, despite the fact that this song has nothing whatsoever to do with Her Majesty, some still argue that if we change the flag or the political system, then we should change the anthem as well. If they dislike the country so much, maybe they should find somewhere else to live, rather than expecting the rest of us to subscribe to their deranged “oh look, that person over there changed the colour of their roof, I’d better change the plants in my garden to match” logic.

Then there’s the other argument, that the song isn’t very interesting and we’d be better off with something like Waltzing Matilda. Waltzing Matilda is a nice song, but do we really want our national anthem to be a song about theft, a lack of willingness to “do the time for the crime” and suicide? I certainly don’t, and I don’t much care if the rest of the world won’t understand half the words of the song as it really doesn’t change a thing…it’s not a suitable song to officially represent our nation.

And anyway, what’s wrong with Advance Australia Fair? It’s a lovely song which talks about Australia with pride. There is nothing wrong with it. It’s a perfect song for a national anthem.

There is one change that I would make though, and that is in relation to the national anthem. It is my view that we do not hear enough of the national anthem and, as such, the one change I would make would be the mandating of the daily airing of the national anthem by all broadcast media.

To prevent it from being buried in the wee hours I would also mandate that the daily playing of the anthem occur between the hours of 6am and midnight, and it would have to be a legible and faithful performance or playing so as to prevent a distasteful mockery of the anthem which would inevitably happen if the anthem’s daily airing was embedded in a comedy program, but other than that I would not set rules about how or when it should be aired. For example, it would be entirely up to the broadcaster as to whether they would have set daily time for the anthem or just play it when the feel like it, and it would be up to them whether they choose to let advertisers sponsor the anthem. I think it would be quite an honour to be the local business which presents the playing of the national anthem on a given day.

But other than having the national anthem played more than it currently is, I see no good reason to change our current system of government, flag or national anthem. They all serve to make the identity of our nation and work very well together. We should be proud, and whilst occasional debate of these topics is healthy, the incessant annual discussion about them for no good reason is pointless and degrading…especially when it keeps happening at this time of the year, on a day when we should all be very proud of our great country, not doing our best to run down our country in the hopes of needlessly and pointlessly changing bits of it.

Happy Australia Day!

Samuel

1 comment January 26th, 2011 at 06:11am

The Sunday Bits for January 23, 2011

Another small set for this weekend.

First off, do you have trouble remembering what you read on this page? If you do, then it might help if I use an archaic font.

A study by Princeton University found that a significant number of those tested could recall more information when it was presented in unusual typefaces rarely used in textbooks.

The research suggests that introducing ‘disfluency’ – by making information superficially harder to understand – deepens the process of learning and encourages better retention.

The psychologists said information which has to be actively generated rather than ‘passively acquired’ from simple text is remembered longer and more accurately.

The study raises questions over how much fonts like Times New Roman and Arial, which are used in the majority of academic books, help readers revise for tests.

American author and psychologist Jonah Lehrer had written about the idea of disfluency in his Wired.com blog before the research was published.
[..]
He said the study showed the whole history of typography was had missed the point when it comes to learning.

Mr Lehrer said: ‘It has been a movement towards easy to read fonts. We assume that anything which makes it easier to see the content is a good thing.

‘This is especially the case in classrooms where teachers assume legibility makes it easier for kids to learn and remember information.

‘That turns out to be exactly backwards.

‘Disfluent fonts, the ones people tend to laugh off, fonts that are comically ugly, they tend to be the best for learning and for memory.’

‘When we see a font that is easy to read we’re able to process that in a mindless way, but when we see an unfamiliar font, one full of weird squiggles, we have to work a little bit harder.

‘That extra effort is a signal to the brain that this might be something worth remembering.’

(h/t: The Daily Mail)

This points to a wider disconnect in logic in the education system if, on the one hand, clear text in textbooks is a generally accepted method of revision for exams, while on the other hand making students copy down notes from overhead projectors, blackboards or whiteboards makes the students more likely to remember the notes than if they had simply read them from a book. The latter option forces students to process the information and be more likely to remember the information, much like the archaic text favoured by the study.

My personal experience matches the study as well. I found that revising from textbooks was a waste of my time as it didn’t enhance my knowledge of subjects in the slightest, and I did just fine without the revision. I also found it incredibly difficult to learn anything in a class which was based entirely on reading from a very legible text. It was much easier to absorb the information if I read it aloud…but this was not possible in that classroom, so I failed the class.

***

There are perfectly good reasons for not allowing pets to sleep on your bed, although we seem to have another reason to add to the list now.

Most U.S. households have pets, and more than half of those cats and dogs are allowed to sleep in their owner’s beds, Drs. Bruno Chomel, a professor at the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine, and Ben Sun, chief veterinarian for California’s Department of Health, say in a study to be published in next month’s issue of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Emerging Infectious Diseases.

The authors, both experts in zoonoses, which are diseases or infections transmitted from animals to humans, reported that “the risk for transmission of zoonotic agents by close contact between pets and their owners through bed sharing, kissing or licking is real and has even been documented for life-threatening infections such as plague, internal parasites” and other serious diseases.

(h/t Andrew Schneider — AOL News)

When it comes to dogs, it is quite destructive to the social order to allow them to regularly sleep with you. The hierarchy of dogs is such that the leader of the pack picks the most desirable sleeping spot, the next dog in line picks the next most desirable spot and so on. Allowing your dog to sleep with you elevates them to your level in the hierarchy, undermining your authority.

Inviting your dog on to your bed is acceptable, as a treat, but most definitely not as a regular “you are welcome here whenever you like” occurrence.

***

John Laws and 2SM have now publicly confirmed what we have all known for weeks, and what 2SM have had up on their website for at least the last two weeks. John Laws is back, and will be hosting the morning show on 2SM and network stations from January 31.

But Laws has only agreed to front a 9am-noon show on the Sydney and regional network of more than 70 stations – including non-Caralis ones in Alice Springs, Tasmania and Katherine – for an indeterminate time and has not locked a long-term deal.

“I don’t know how long I’ll be back on air but I can’t wait to be talking to Australians around the country again,” he said.

(h/t Sydney Confidential — The Daily Telegraph)

The number of stations is debatable as a lot of that “more than 70” appears to be transmitter sites rather than actual stations, but it will be good to have Lawsie back on the air regardless. I doubt that he’ll make much of a dent in the Sydney market (will 2SM even re-enter the ratings?) but I don’t think that’s the point. Lawsie is bored with retirement and wants to get back to doing what he loves. He, the industry, and his audience are lucky that he is able to do so.

***

Speaking of which, I noticed that when Jason Morrison was on Seven’s Sunrise the other day, David Koch went along with notion that Jason is currently unemployed and looking for work. Whilst this might be true technically, we all know that the reason he hasn’t signed the 2UE contract yet is that he is still under contract with 2GB and will be presenting the 2UE breakfast show just as soon as the contracts allow. It was nice of Kochie to wish Jason all the best with the job hunt though…I suppose it’s one wish that can easily be foreseen to come to fruition.

***

That’s all for this week. See you next week!

Samuel

January 23rd, 2011 at 05:52pm

Refugee hunger strike

An email to 2UE’s Mike Jeffreys

Good evening Mike,

The statement from the refugee advocate that you had on a short time ago, that he supports hunger strikes as long as the people engaging in them don't continue with it to the point of causing harm to themselves, seems like a bit of a contradiction to me. Surely the point of a hunger strike is to threaten to continue to the point of life-threatening hunger or thirst, so as to play on the compassion of the people against whom you are protesting. Going on a hunger strike until you're a bit hungry just seems like a waste of time, and good way to save the tax payer a few dollars on the food bill.

And those first two callers after 10 o'clock…you sure can tell that the moon is ripe tonight. Very nicely handled by you though Mike, I'm always amused when callers try to bait you and don't understand that you're subtly getting them back.

Have a great night.

Regards,
Samuel Gordon-Stewart
Canberra

January 19th, 2011 at 10:24pm

Sudden increase in interest in John Kerr?

There has been an explosion in the number of people landing on this blog today after searching for “John Kerr”. Normally I see a few people a day at most. So far there have been 212 arrivals today.

I can’t see any obvious reason for the sudden increase in interest, although it is nice to know that John is a popular man. Would anybody care to enlighten me as to what’s happening with the John Kerrs of the world?

Samuel

January 17th, 2011 at 03:19pm

The (not late if you’re in Western Australia) Sunday Bits for January 16, 2011

Alas I am not in Western Australia, so I am late for what is a rather short Sunday Bits this week.

***

Starting at midday, 2CC will be broadcasting Chris Smith’s afternoon show, on relay from 2GB Sydney. Chris Smith will replace 2UE’s Mike Smith afternoon show on 2CC, which in turn (on 2UE anyway) replaces the Tim Webster afternoon show.

I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, it was time for Tim to go…it probably had been for a year or two. I liked Tim’s show in its first year, but after that 2UE tried their hardest to turn it in to an endless parade of lifestyle segments and killed off any interest that I had in the show. I did continue to listen intermittently to the news-based segments, but even that was hard when Tim kept bringing on people who wanted to explain that we’re all doomed because of global warming, and it’s all our fault. It became even harder when Tim suddenly and without warning changed his mind one afternoon and became outraged about the carbon tax. As nice as it was for Tim to espouse a sensible opinion on the subject, as he never explained the backflip and even went so far as to pretend that there wasn’t one, I could never believe that he meant what he was saying. As such, I gave up listening completely.

Alas Tim moves to weekend afternoons, replacing Clive Robertson. I can’t describe how annoying this is without screaming.

But back to the two Smiths. Either would be better than the Webster show, however I do rate Michael Smith more highly than Chris Smith. That said, in Sydney I doubt that Michael will put a noticeable dent in Chris’ ratings. Chris has the Alan Jones and Ray Hadley ratings as a lead-in, so I doubt that he’ll lose any significant ground, but I will give plenty of credit to 2UE for building a viable alternative lineup. Jason Morrison (ex 2GB and to be confirmed), David Oldfield, Michael Smith, Paul Murray, The Two Murrays, Stuart Bocking and Mike Jeffreys, is at the very least a lineup which has a chance, unlike last year’s lineup.

As for 2CC, well I suppose it makes sense for them seeing as they’re already running 2GB programming between 9 and noon, and it will at least mean that, finally, 2GB’s on-air claim that they have network stations other than MTR (which doesn’t count seeing as it’s 2GB’s Melbourne outpost) on shows other than Ray Hadley and Weekend Detention will have some truth to it. The real question now is whether 2GB’s evening and overnight lineup could be the next thing to appear on 2CC’s lineup.

***

Padders over at The Right Aussie filmed a couple car trips and sped them up quite significantly. The results are quite enjoyable.

It reminds me of a plan I had back when the initial GDE construction was completed, to film a journey from the far end of Gungahlin Drive to Tharwa, which is of course now one very long road with multiple names. I might do that when the current GDE works are completed.

***

You might want to mark May 21 in your diary and make sure that you have your affairs in order by then, because that has been confirmed as the date on which the world will end…or at least, when it will start to end. The true end is another five months away.

2011 AD – On May 21st, Judgment Day will begin and the rapture (the taking up into heaven of God’s elect people) will occur at the end of the 23-year great tribulation. On October 21st, the world will be destroyed by fire (7000 years from the flood; 13,023 years from creation).

Somehow I think the burning in the fire will come as a relief to many after the five months of torture.

On Judgment Day, May 21st, 2011, this 5-month period of horrible torment will begin for all the inhabitants of the earth. It will be on May 21st that God will raise up all the dead that have ever died from their graves. Earthquakes will ravage the whole world as the earth will no longer conceal its dead (Isaiah 26:21). People who died as saved individuals will experience the resurrection of their bodies and immediately leave this world to forever be with the Lord. Those who died unsaved will be raised up as well, but only to have their lifeless bodies scattered about the face of all the earth. Death will be everywhere.

Yes, the zombie apocalypse is upon us. And you thought it would never happen…

***

That’ll do it for this week. More Sunday Bits next week, hopefully on Sunday.

Samuel

January 17th, 2011 at 02:20am

Quote Of The Day

"Now in a sense that's beside the point, but in a sense it's not" — Garner Ted Armstrong

January 16th, 2011 at 06:08am

Pen Licence

An email to 2GB and MTR’s C Team: Mark Levy, Chris Bowen and Trevor Long

Good evening gentlemen,

I do remember the pen licence quite vividly because I had to qualify for mine twice!

In year 3 my teacher insisted that we had to prove that we were capable of writing neatly in order to use a pen. My handwriting, whilst legible, was an incoherent combination of upper and lower case letters, so for example all of my As were in lower case, all of my Es, Qs and Rs, were in upper case. My teacher hated this, but eventually allowed me to use a pen when I started writing the occasional upper case A in the correct spot.

In year 4, my teacher refused to let anyone write in pencil because it was too faint for him to read.

Then in year 5 I had my year 3 teacher again, and she made everyone re-qualify for their pen licence.

Mind you, she was a tad odd. According to her, Sorbolene Cream solved virtually every problem known to man, and muting your television while recording with your VCR would prevent the recording from having any sound…and she kept reminding us of it.

Enjoy your evening. I hope to hear y’all again soon!

Regards,
Samuel Gordon-Stewart
Canberra

January 15th, 2011 at 08:22pm

Dreaming about an unusual trip to the optometrist

Last night (or perhaps yesterday afternoon, given the time of day that my sleep started) I had an odd dream about my upcoming visit to the optometrist which I mentioned the other day.

In the dream I was walking through the alarm clock department of David Jones in the Canberra Centre in Civic which was a fairly large section with many shelves of alarm clocks and golden down-lighting, when I realised that it was 5:15pm and that I had to go to the optometrist, so I went to the building and entered through the side door, when it occurred to me that I had forgotten to retrieve cash from an ATM for my appointment.

I then rapidly scurried back to the Canberra Centre which had morphed in to Westfield Chatswood and found “The ATM Shop” where a very large and cranky ATM ate my ATM card and started berating me like the blackboard in Mr. Squiggle. The cranky ATM eventually agreed to dispense some money as long as I would listen to him singing. The ATM then started singing, and the dream ended.

As long as my visit to the optometrist on Tuesday isn’t as bizarre as that, I’ll be happy.

Samuel

January 15th, 2011 at 02:45am

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