Archive for January, 2008

2008 Australian Of The Year Awards

Final list as at 6:52pm.

Australian of the year: Lee Kernaghan – Country music singer

Senior Australian of the year: David Bussau – A micro-finance specialist who works to help poverty-stricken communities around the world.

Young Australian of the year: Casey Stoner – 21 year-old World MotoGP champion

Local Hero of the year: Jonathon Welch – founder and leader of The Choir of Hard Knocks

Samuel

January 25th, 2008 at 06:49pm

The Petrol Companies Don’t Always Win (Shell out of petrol)

A long weekend is usually a pretty good business period for the petrol companies, and a great excuse for them to mark up the prices.

For Shell though, this long weekend is not so good. Courtesy of livenews.com.au:

Shell service stations across the state ran out of certain types of fuel today, just ahead of the Australia Day long weekend.

The unplanned shut-down of two major units at the Clyde refinery caused the shortage.

Shell was forced to close pumps all over Australia as drivers hit the roads for a three-day weekend.

All premium unleaded has run out and only limited supplies of regular unleaded and diesel are still available.

It’s probably going to annoy a handful of motorists who pull in to a Shell service station, only to be forced to drive away without refuelling, but for the vast majority of motorists it’s a nice piece of poetic justice. Let’s just hope that don’t put the prices up after the long weekend to make up for the lost sales.

Samuel

January 25th, 2008 at 05:00pm

Ten plays the wrong soap opera and talkback radio gets inundated

It certainly didn’t happen on 2CC…must just be a Sydney thing.

I couldn’t help but burst out laughing when I read Frankster’s piece about Channel Ten playing the wrong episode of The Bold and The Beautiful (or “The Bored and the…oh never mind, where’s the remote?” as I like to call it) yesterday. It seems that at 4:30, Channel Ten started the Wednesday episode of the soap opera, and within moments talkback radio was flooded with callers whinging about it. I’m not sure if this was 2UE’s John Stanley or 2GB’s Phillip Clark, (with 702 ABC Sydney covering the cricket, it can’t have been them) but I’d like to think it was both, simply because of the hilarity factor.

According to Frankster, Ten switched to the correct episode within a few minutes, although there is no word on whether they started the episode at the beginning or a few minutes in.

Incidentally, speaking of hilarity, it would appear that 702 ABC Sydney’s webstream is running repeats of the overnight programming during the cricket. Today from 10am to 2pm it’s a repeat of Nightlife with Tony Delroy, and from 2pm to 6pm it’s a repeat of Overnights with Rod Quinn (the only ABC presenter I have ever spoken to on-air…and he was on 666 ABC Canberra in the afternoon at the time). Whilst the timecalls will work as it’s an exact twelve hour delay between the original broadcast and the replay, the “good evening” and “good morning” greetings and any current temperatures will not.

Would it be so hard to have a live national webstream program to fill the void on the local radio webstreams, or just turn the webstream off temporarily like the commercial stations do when they aren’t able to stream something for licensing reasons? Very very odd.

Samuel

7 comments January 25th, 2008 at 03:05pm

That coffee cup

Yesterday afternoon Tim Webster was talking about clutter, and clutterers, so I wrote him an email about my cluttering which seemed to amuse him.

It was just after I wrote that email that I remembered why I have a disposable coffee cup from 2006 as an ornament…I’ve been meaning to photograph it and post the photo on here since the day I kept it.

Well, here’s a photo of it…and I’m still keeping it as an ornament.

Muffin Break Christmas Coffee Cup from 2006

Samuel

January 25th, 2008 at 01:20pm

The Brown Tree Kook

It was interesting to hear ACT Chief Turnip Jon Stanhope on 2CC’s 8am news today. He was talking about a plan to turn the Mulligan’s Flat Nature Reserve in to a nature sanctuary. During the audio grab he was listing a few of the species which could benefit from this, and he stumbled on the name of a bird, accidentally calling it a “Brown Tree Kook”.

I’ve been trying to work out what you would classify a Chief Turnip as for quite some time, and now I know, a Brown Tree Kook.

For what it’s worth, I actually think the idea of a nature sanctuary at Mulligan’s Flat is a good idea. I can’t imagine that it would cost too much to build and maintain a “predator proof fence”, and the initial allocation of $650,000 sounds quite reasonable. At the very least, it’s $650,000 that can’t be spent on another one of those peculiar public artworks or an Al Grasby statue.

I’m also pleased that the Brown Tree Kook has committed to restoring the historic Tharwa bridge. It’s a bit overdue, and I’m a tad suspicious of the timing considering that it is now an election year and, amongst other things, the Gungahlin Drive Extension roadworks are likely to finish a handful of months before the election with the most used part of it, the Glenloch Interchange, finishing last, giving people time to readjust to the old idea of a relatively smooth run through there just in time to vote for the incumbent.

But I digress, it’s good to see some action on the issue, and I made a point of visiting the Tharwa General Store yesterday (quite a distance, especially with the detour in lieu of a bridge) to thank Val Jeffrey for not backing down, and for getting the Stanhope government to actually do something that the community want…a rare feat in this town. Mr. Jeffrey was a bit less optimistic, pointing out that the work hasn’t started yet…but he seemed pleased that there was some progress all-the-same.

One wonders if we will see further niceties heading the way of our historic communities of Hall and Tharwa courtesy of the Brown Tree Kook this year…a reopening of their schools perhaps?

Update: Marcus writes in an email that Bob Brown, federal leader of The Greens, might be a more apt definition of a “brown tree kook”. Thanks Marcus! End Update

Samuel

January 25th, 2008 at 12:17pm

So Jerome, when do I get my cheque for $8 billion?

It almost sounds like a typical piece of spam…”Hello, my name is Jerome, I work for a French bank and I need your help to get $8 billion out of the country”. Well Jerome, if you want to send me a cheque…

It’s being called one of the biggest frauds in history. A junior employee of France’s second largest bank, The Societe General, has been accused of stealing about $8 billion dollars. Thirty-one year old Jerome Kerviel is the suspect, and he seems to have disappeared…or as news.com.au put it, “Mr Kerviel could not be reached for comment”.

The story is a tad confusing, with nobody, it seems, knowing whether Jerome profited personally from the debacle, or exactly how much he apparently defrauded the bank of. It would appear that Jerome has the authorities and the press chasing their tales.

One thing is for sure though, the all-powerful “they” that rule out lives say that money can’t buy you friends, and in the few hours after Jerome’s identity was revealed his list of friends on Facebook dropped from eleven to four. Could just be me, but I’m suspicious of the seven that un-befriended him, I mean that’s a billion dollars a piece if they’re all in it together.

As for me, I’m just waiting for the email from Jerome…

Samuel

January 25th, 2008 at 10:12am

Clutterers

Good afternoon Tim,

I'm another self-confessed clutterer. I mainly collect paper, and anything paper based…I even have a disposable christmas design coffee cup from 2006 sitting on a bench as an ornament!

If you look in some places in this house, you'll find a few old catalogues that I just decided to keep for some reason and have forgotten about since then, and I have a Daily Telegraph from the mid 1990s here somewhere…not that I know why I kept it.

Regards,
Samuel Gordon-Stewart
Canberra

January 24th, 2008 at 12:30pm

“She is very welcome to use the buses but not when she is on her lead”

Clive Robertson mentioned this story this morning and I completely forgot to mention it at the time as it is one of the funniest stories I’ve heard in a while.

From Reuters (click here for original article)

“Pet” girl kicked off bus for wearing leash

LONDON (Reuters) – A British bus company has apologized to a girl who is led around on a leash by her boyfriend and describes herself as a human pet after one of its drivers threw her off a bus.

Tasha Maltby, 19, told British newspapers she was the “pet” of her 25-year-old fiance Dani Graves.

Pictures showed her dressed in black Gothic-style clothing with silver buckles on a silver chain — which the driver of a bus from the firm Arriva took exception to.

She told the Daily Mail newspaper Wednesday she was thrown off and told: “We don’t let freaks and dogs like you on.”

Arriva would not comment on specifics but said it apologized if the couple felt they had been discriminated against. It added, however, that the driver was worried about safety and the company told Maltby to take the leash off in the future.

“We have spoken to the driver who has talked about health and safety,” a spokesman said. “Should she be attached to a chain and something happens on the bus, that could be dangerous. All we are saying is that she is very welcome to use the buses but not when she is on her lead.”

Maltby — who lives on state benefits and got engaged in November — said her choice of lifestyle might seem unusual but was harmless.

“I am a pet,” she told the Daily Mail. “I generally act animal-like and I lead a really easy life. I don’t cook or clean and I don’t go anywhere without Dani. It might seem strange but it makes us both happy. It’s my culture and my choice. It isn’t hurting anyone.”

(Editing by Michael Winfrey)

After hearing the self-description of the woman in question, I completely support the bus driver…and why is a self-confessed pet receiving government benefits? Nattie doesn’t receive anything from the government, I have to pay them to be allowed to keep her.

Samuel

January 24th, 2008 at 12:04pm

Shirley

Good morning Steve,

Ye gods, are you sure Shirley was from mid-west USA and not from another planet far far away?

She's madder than a cut snake, and it wouldn't surprise me if she was the one that cut the snakes.

Well handled Steve.

Regards,
Samuel Gordon-Stewart
Canberra

For those of you who are wondering, Lesley is from Westboro Baptist Church’s http://www.godhatesfags.com/ and is one of those people who manages to instantly swing from asking a (albeit loaded) question quietly to screaming at the top of her voice about something mildly related to the question, regardless of the answer.

This group have decided that they want to picket Heat Ledger’s funeral because of his involvement in the movie Brokeback Mountain.

Steve’s interview of Shirley can be heard at http://www.mytalk.com.au/aspx/pages/mediaplayer.aspx?t=audio&w=6207.

Update: I must have missed Mike Jeffreys interviewing Shirley this morning, but I just heard a promo for his show with her on it, saying almost exactly the same things, word-for-word, that she said to Steve Price. One wonders if she is reading from a script or similar, and if so, why she has so much trouble remembering her own beliefs. End Update

January 24th, 2008 at 10:06am

Triple M to broadcast cricket

It’s been a while since the former Southern Cross talk radio network dumped their cricket coverage and left it in the hands of the ABC who, I might add, have an amazing way of sending people to sleep with their coverage. It’s not their fault, cricket isn’t a particularly interesting game in spoken form, it’s the sort of game you have to watch. Interesting sport coverage on radio demands constant action, something cricket (traditionally) doesn’t provide.

Twenty20 cricket has changed that some extent, it is definitely a game of constant action (although personally I think it’s an awful perversion of the game of cricket). Triple M have decided to broadcast Twenty20 cricket.

The upcoming KFC International Twenty20 will be covered by Dennis Cometti, Greg Blewett, Darren Lehmann and James Brayshaw which seems like a reasonable team, I’m a bit concerned about the special guests Peter Helliar and Strauchanie (I don’t know who this person is…anybody care to enlighten me?) and why, other than it being FM radio, these seemingly non-cricket or commentator people need to be there.

The coverage starts on the first of February at 6pm and will also be broadcast in Brisbane on 104.5FM, sadly Canberra misses out.

Despite my reservations, I wish them all the best with it. It’s about time there was a decent alternative, other than the mute button, to the predictable and annoying Channel Nine cricket commentary, and the sleepy ABC commentary.

Samuel

1 comment January 22nd, 2008 at 10:00am

Bert Newton becomes a grandfather…

…which I suppose means there is now a mini-moon.

Sam Albert Newton Welsh was born three weeks early in Melbourne and is the son of TV personality Lauren Newton and Olympic swimmer Matt Welsh.

Apart from wondering about the complexities of having a son related to a moon, I also have to wonder if the child’s first name is officially “Samuel”?

None the less, congratulations to all involved.

Samuel

January 22nd, 2008 at 08:00am

Brian Henderson’s final National Nine News bulletin

Over at Frankster’s Archive, Frankster has just returned from a month-long break. One of the many things Frankster has posted in his first round of archival audio and video for the year is a video of the last ten minutes of Brian Henderson’s final National Nine News bulletin.

The video features some highlights, lowlights (and even a no-light) of Brian’s career, about half way through I’m pretty sure there’s voiceover from John Laws, and at one stage there is an extract of the Sydney version of the 1995 “Who’s who of news” promo.

I wonder what Brian is doing these days?

Incidentally, there is also a rather peculiar promo in there for Ten Eyewitness News with Steve Liebmann and Geraldine Doogue.

Samuel

January 21st, 2008 at 10:36am

Samuel’s Blog Weekly Poll: Whaling

Despite last week’s drama in the Southern Ocean, the whaling continues. The debate over what we should do about it also continues (albeit a bit quieter than last week).

Should the Australian Navy be deployed to stop the whaling?

Total Votes: 29
Started: January 21, 2008

As usual, please feel free to leave a comment below if you would like to elaborate on your answer.

Results from previous polls can be seen by clicking here.

Samuel

January 21st, 2008 at 07:30am

Samuel’s Musician Of The Week

This week’s award is presented as a tribute to the late Clinton Grybas. Clinton’s favourite song was “Shine” by Vanessa Amorosi, Vanessa performed this at Clinton’s funeral on Wednesday and as such she receives the award this week.

I would like to thank Steve Price for paying tribute to Clinton on Wednesday, and for allowing me a couple minutes to do the same.

You say that you never had a mum
And nobody needs you
So cry, so cry
You believe that life rolls by
Just to deceive you
By your time, by your time
You’re getting old
And the longer you take
The slower your pain will grow
It will grow, it will grow
You can close your eyes
And hope that when you open them
You’ve got a brand new life
Do you find, you can’t hide?

You can give your life
You can lose your soul
You can bang your head
Or you can drown in a hole
Nothing lasts forever
But you can try
Look around you
Everyone you see
Everyone you know
Is going to Shine
Shine

Grow up and make the best of what you’ve got
Of what you’ve got,
Of what you’ve got
The days are going by and you’re sittin’ on your arse
And you’re wondering why, why, why, yeah

You can give your life, or
You can lose your soul
You can bang your head
Or you can drown in a hole
Nothing lasts forever
But you can try
Look around you
Everyone you see
Everyone you know
Is going to Shine

You can bang your head
Or you can drown in a hole
Nothing lasts forever
But you can try
Look around you
Everyone you see
Everyone you know
Is going to Shine

You say that you never had a mum
And nobody needs you
So cry, so cry, so cry
You believe that life rolls by just to deceive you
By your time, well by your time
Your getting old
And the longer you take the slower you’ll pain will grow
It’ll grow, it’ll grow
You can close your eyes
And hope that when you open them
You’ve got a brand new life

You can give your life or
You can lose your soul
You can bang your head
Or you can drown in a hole
Nothing lasts forever
But you can try
Look around you
Everyone you see
Everyone you know
Is going to Shine

You can bang your head
Or you can drown in a hole
Nothing lasts forever
But you can try
Well look around you
Everyone you see
Everyone you know
Is going to Shine

Don’t don’t, don’t don’t you do it
Shine

Samuel

January 21st, 2008 at 07:23am

US Presidential Race

Good morning John,

I haven't been paying an awful lot of attention to the presidential nominations in the US…in many ways it's of little concern to me until they whittle it down to one candidate and their running mate on each side. That was until you mentioned that Rudy Giuliani is one of the republican candidates. I think Mr. Giuliani is a great man, a lot of the work he did as mayor of New York and previously as a United States Attorney was fantastic…and now, all of a sudden, I am supporting him in the presidential campaign.

Incidentally about the tennis…I find tennis painfully uninteresting to watch at the best of times, but to have it still going at this time of the morning is surely a mistake…couldn't they have delayed the final match until 9am?

I suppose at least the crowd are getting more than their money's worth!

Regards,
Samuel Gordon-Stewart
Canberra

January 20th, 2008 at 04:00am

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