Monthly Archives: September 2012

Horrible Horoscopes

“Today you will make 79 decisions; all of them will be wrong.  Every word you utter will be completely ignored.  All traffic lights will be red, and you won’t find a single working biro.”

Had I read that particular horoscope while munching on my Rice Bubbles I would have been much better prepared for the horror story of a day that lay ahead of me.

Instead, my star sign had the following sage advice: “Your plans will work, especially if they’re built on experience.  A change to your family or work situation will occur this week.  Lucky Number: 2.” Summing up:  some distant planets and stars spinning around in deep space somehow revealed this information to a mystic who then submitted it to this paper.

Yeah, right.

Actually, I’m quite jealous that I’m not getting paid to write the daily horoscopes.  Not only would it be fun, but I reckon I could whip up a year’s worth of vague sounding generalisations in less than a weekend, then take the rest of the year off to count my ill-gotten loot.

And I can already foresee sales of this paper dropping by at least a twelfth as I gleefully hammer the self-esteem of every defenceless Capricorn into the ground, eg:  “All Capricorns are drab, tone deaf and tell boring jokes.  Beige is your favourite colour so you should not be allowed to select clothes or home furnishings.    Lucky Number:  43.16”

Seriously, if you’re relying on the daily horoscope to help you make daily decisions, then you really should be kept away from power outlets and have a cork placed on your fork for your own, and others, protection.

Star followers are obviously the sort of people who are easily lead and extremely gullible; and if this sounds like you, then immediately send me your date of birth along with fifty dollars in cash right now.  In return I’ll provide you with some sage advice, along with an amazingly accurate prediction of your immediate financial future.

Meanwhile those of us with our heads screwed on properly will follow something a little more realistic; The Phantom.

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iPhone iFun

This week in our major cities, strangely dressed fanatics took over the streets, and I wondered when this madness would end.  Yep, the newest iPhone had arrived and the Geeks and Trendies were out in force trying to snag one.

Whoopty flamin’ Doo.

Now, I happen to be the part owner of an iPhone, as earlier this year Long Suffering Wife bought one to replace our old mobile phone, aka: The Radiation King.  “Well, what do you think?” she asked, noting that for five seconds after the great unveiling I still hadn’t moved a muscle.

“Why is it pink?” I asked.

“You’re always complaining how anything coloured black or grey is too hard to find.”

I shrugged, “Fair enough.  Can I have a go?”

“Of course you can,” she said, slipping the phone into her handbag.  And that was as close as I got to ‘our’ new phone.  So I decided to go and buy my own.

At the shop a smiling assistant wandered over to where I was standing with my finger in my mouth, and I pointed to an iPhone.  He looked me up and down then asked, “Are you sure mate?” in the same tone of voice used to talk people down off tall buildings.

I pointed to a competitors’ phone, and he shook his head slightly.  So, I waved my hand around trying to judge from his expression if I was getting Hotter or Colder.  He nodded enthusiastically as my hand stopped over a dust covered model with big, bright, colourful buttons; basically, the sort of phone Forrest Gump would desire.

Now, there are people covered in home-made tattoos, with less teeth and chromosomes than me, happily using smart phones, but for some reason I was being shown a phone that wouldn’t have looked out of place in Fred Flintstone’s house.  I returned home phone-less.

And every night I sit in the lounge room surrounded by my family, their faces bathed in the glow of their iPhones, iPads, and iPods, and my attempts to communicate with them with sounds from my mouth are being pointedly ignored, which is making me rather iRate.

So if I wish to reconnect with the drooling iZombies in my own home, then sooner or later I’m going to have to line up to get myself one of those stupid smart phones!

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Dopey Dad

“Dad, have you ever taken drugs?”  I put down my beer and sighed, and not for the first time wished I’d had some sort of parenting handbook given to me when our first child was born.

Sensing that the coveted trophy of Father of the Year was slipping even further from my grasp, I decided my only hope lay in getting political.  “That’s a good question,” I replied, “now let me ask you a question; why do you want to know?”

“Because Mum said to ask you.”

I glared at the kitchen, which had suddenly gone very quiet, and muttered, “I see.”  I swallowed another mouthful of beer then said, “Well, let’s just say that Daddy’s done a lot of stupid things in his life, and the fact that I was very easily lead didn’t help matters much either.”

“So you have tried drugs!”

“Well, I didn’t say that!” I stammered, desperately playing for time, hoping for the phone to ring, a knock on the door, or a meteorite strike in the backyard.  When nothing happened I stared at my can of beer and found inspiration.

“Actually, Daddy takes drugs everyday sweetheart!” I beamed.  This statement was followed by the sound of a dish smashing in the kitchen and Long Suffering Wife appearing in the doorway with a ‘look’ on her face.

“You see,” I said, holding up my beer can, “alcohol is a drug, but I can give it up anytime I want.”  I ignored the choking noises coming from the doorway.

“Drugs are everywhere little mate,” I continued, paddling frantically toward the shoreline of Safer Topics, “headache tablets, caffeine, nicotine, and medicines are drugs.  Even chocolate could be considered a drug,” I finished, with a pointed look at the kitchen door.

I had another swig, and reflected on the fact that the War on Drugs has been about as successful as the Wars on Poverty, Terror, Obesity, Organised Crime and Stupidity.  In spite of the billions poured into the War on Dope, the authorities are still unable to keep drugs out of their prisons, let alone off our streets.

Satisfied for the time being, The Littlest Princess wandered off, leaving me to finish my beer in peace.  I had won a small victory, but the War against my Children’s Curiosity will be a lifetime struggle.

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Gregs Saturday Scribble – Facebook Fun

If all your friends jumped off a cliff would you join them?  Of course you would.  So when my friends joined Facebook, I followed the herd and jumped on board… eventually.

Over ten million Australians have Facebook (Fb) accounts, and a miniscule number of them have publicly declared that I’m their Friend; the fools!  Sadly, my tribe is missing some old mates who have been forbidden to talk with me again; at least until they get divorced.

And during my time in Fb World, I’ve learned the following:

Fb is a great way for families to stay in touch.  We often use Fb to communicate with our children who are usually as far away as their bedrooms.

Apparently it’s very bad form to post on Fb at work, while motorcycling, when your partner is yelling at you, in job interviews, or during your court case.

Before mouthing off on Fb about your crummy job, love life, or delicate medical condition, just remember certain people may get a little excited by your comments, eg: your friends, the lover you met last night, your now outraged ex-boyfriend/girlfriend, your parents, your boss, or the person in HR doing the background check on your job application.

Kids, Fb was not invented for you to show the world how many unique combinations of swear words you know.

At all costs, avoid drinking alcohol and Fb Searching for old girlfriends!  I wish I knew what they’re sharing with Long Suffering Wife that makes her laugh so much?

Nobody has hundreds of friends, so weed out the well-wishers, casual acquaintances and gossip mongers from the real deals by thinking hard about which of your Fb Friends will leap in front of a speeding bus to save you.

Note: your real friends won’t stand on the footpath recording your accident, then post it online with a comment like, “OMG!  I’m so traumatised!!  I need a coffee now!!!!”  They’ll be lying on the road wondering how soon you’ll replace their smashed smart phone.

Anyway, if this column has been of help to you please click Like, leave a Comment, or Share.  Or better yet, write me a letter before Australia Post disappears.

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Gregs’ Saturday Scribble – Rubbished Doing My Doggone Bit

Little Dog hunched up to deposit her second ‘Number Two’ on our daily outing, and to take my mind off the grunting and shuffling going on at my feet, I had a bit of a look around.  The first thing I noted was how many passing drivers screwed up their faces at us as they whizzed by.

Next was how much rubbish lay on the side of the road.  Shaking my head I thought, ‘Someone should do something about this.’  And being a man of limited action, I decided that that someone was me, so I started back home to ring the Council.

On the way I picked up a discarded can.  It was one of those caffeine-charged energy drinks, and according to the blurb on the side of the tin, consuming this potion would give you a guaranteed boost to keep you buzzing throughout the day.  Obviously it hadn’t given the drinker quite enough energy toss their empty can into a nearby bin.

So I did just that; wandered over to some stranger’s wheelie bin, tossed the can inside, and made Gladstone a slightly cleaner place.  Feeling empowered, I picked up some more rubbish, then some more.  I thought of the example I was setting to any onlookers; that here, in this part of town was a bloke who had had enough.  Ten minutes later, after filling a discarded shopping bag with rubbish, I straightened my aching back and cried “Enough!”

The next day I returned to the place I’d cleaned the day before, and was slightly miffed to discover that the area had been littered again.  Obviously some passing pig had been distressed by the sight of a clean section of footpath and done something about it.  The filthy rotten sod.

Making the sighing sound I reserve for these situations, I started again.  It didn’t take long to pick up the new mess, and before too long I’d filled another bag.  As it wasn’t wheelie bin day, I walked down to the shops to find an empty bin, into which I smugly dumped my rubbish bag.

My pride was short lived though, because as I turned to go, a passer-by pointed to where Dumb Dog was emptying his bladder on the side of the bin and yelled, “It’s people like you who spoil it for everyone!”

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