Forging And Uttering

I have a friend who forges many things. And unlike the ordinary common trickster, he uses an actual forge. I think that this should attract a stronger penalty in the law – after all he is using up bottled gas and charcoal and other valuable resources to do this forging. Also making a great deal of noise.

I also know other friends who utter things. In some cases they utter them all day long, and would probably be capable of doing so under wet cement. I cannot understand why they are not taken up by the police and jailed.

For myself, the only false document that I have ever seen resulted in beer. Coors beer, as it happened, and that would probably be considered a crime in itself – at least against the taste buds.

I have gone undetected and unpunished until now. I have no need of suspect documents to buy beer at the local Liquor Barons shop as the man there knows me. He would probably peer suspiciously if I bought expensive things, but as long as he is prepared to sell vin ordinaire for $ 5 a bottle I am safe. Connoisseurs and foreigners may quail at $ 5 plonk but Australian vineyards are not that bad.

This whole topic has arisen with news reports that a number of the members of the British Royal family may not be all they seem. There is a suspicion that at least one of them has been substituted for Paul McCartney and that many of the pound notes that Her Majesty has been passing down the local Tesco’s have been hand-drawn selfies…

O.K. Baumer

Orville Baumer was about my same age when I met him in grade school. We went to the 5th grade in Riondel and lived not too far apart. We also joined the Cub Scouts that same year, though Orville was a lot better at doing the badges than ever I was. I can only recall getting two in all my time – one for cooking and one for woodcraft. Orv got semaphore and shelter building and a lot more. He went on to Boy Scouts as well.

Orville was a home soul – he stayed in the town long after I had moved away. Went to high school there and eventually graduated a year ahead of me; I had dropped back a year through moving to Australia. He also stayed in the province for his university time, and got out faster with his degree than I did down here.

Orville had girlfriends in high school and university. A lot more than I did. He married a little earlier, though maybe that was a mistake – he ended up with a divorce from that first marriage. Thankfully, his second has worked out well, and he’ll be well into his thirty-some anniversaries.

Orville does like I do – keeps his cars until they are about 13 years old before trading them in. He never buys big ones – always just little sedans. He’s only taken two overseas holidays in his life. He lives in a regular house with the average amount of old furniture, cranky pets, and unsuccessful grass.

But Orv is different from me in one important respect. When tasked by some unknown  teenager with being responsible for all the ills of the world, Orville cringes and apologises. He says he is sorry for whatever the kid complains about and promises to do better. Orville bows his head in shame for owning his own little house and car, eating regularly, and minding his own business. Orville shys away from the internet groups and protest demonstrations and people who complain in malls.

Orville would never tell a work-shy, over-age, quasi-student who plays the welfare system like a xylophone for money, opiates, and sympathy that they are a public pest. He’d never call them pinko parish parasites. He’d never tell them to stuff their puerile secondhand manifesto where the sun don’t shine.

In many respects, Orville Kitchener Baumer is an admirably civilised person. I really should try to emulate him. One day. I’ll let you know which day I choose.

What Does A Popular Culture Icon Do On Holiday?*

For that matter, what do they do when they are finally clasted…as every icon eventually is. Milli Vanilli went down in flames after they only pretended to sing badly. Had they lip-synched to the ” Horst Wessel Lied ” it might have been a fair cop, but as it was, the outrage over their pop antics was a little silly. However, it was effective – they rarely perform on the stage anymore…

Currently we have no end of entertainment icons floating about. Some, who may have been connected to dodgy politicians or procurers, are paddling as fast as they can for the horizon in hopes that the furore will die down behind them before they are dragged back.

Some icons are up there in the limelight right now; virtuous, visible, and vociferous – still rising and trying for the crowning halo of television publicity. I suspect that many of them are hoping the negatives have been burnt, the files deleted, and the receipt books thrown into the harbour. Some, like Einstein, may become beloved memories. Some, Teller and Oppenheimer may not be so beloved. And some may not leave a memory at all.

That’s known as getting away with it.

*  Practise her scowl.

British Independence – Part Four – Cashing In

If Great Again Britain finally wrenches itself loose from the toils of the EU, and is politely asked to withdraw their Governors – General, Lieutenant, State, or Honorary as the case may be – from nations that have finally decided that they can also govern themselves, there will be formalities to be completed.

In the case of the United States these were conducted at Yorktown in Virginia some centuries ago. The representatives of the British Crown under Lord Cornwallis were invited to throw their muskets into a heap and get on board Royal Navy vessels and go away. The alternative was to be shot dead. It may not seem a very formal procedure, but it was effective.

We need not go the musket route here in Australia or New Zealand, though it would be a lot of fun. We can simply pack up the silver, paintings, Rolls Royce cars, and portraits of H.M., place the Governors on top of the pile, and send them back to Tilbury Docks via the next container ship. The various Government Houses can be occupied by the state or federal leaders and if it is done with efficiency no-one will really notice anything.

Canada may have a problem in that they will be replacing a Queen with a Trudeau and there may be a lot of popular sentiment against it. If they substitute a hockey goalie the thing might go well.

I think the UK would do well to look to a hitherto untapped source of funds – the Loyal Oath taken by new citizens of Commonwealth countries during their naturalisation ceremonies. I underwent one such affair in 1970 and it was a solemn and joyous occasion. A Bible was held and an oath of fealty to HM Queen Elizabeth II, her heirs and assigns was taken. This was not given a run-out period and is in force today.

If the British BREXIT from Australia as well as from the EU, I am prepred to pay a fair fee for the cancellation of this oath and/or its transfer to an Australian President or King or High Ruler. If the transaction occurs during the reign of King Charles III, I would be prepared to pay more.

 

British Independence – Part Two – The Opposition

The opposition to the British BREXIT decision taken some time ago seems to have been set along party lines – as so many social questions are – and further connected to a number of interest groups. Whether they might be said to be special interest groups or not is up to the reader to decide. I counted :

  1. Some youth groups  – who were horrified that the easy access to Europe for jobs and/or vacations might be compromised.
  2. Some immigrant organisations who feared that the nation’s gates would swing shut  and prevent their clientele and relatives from coming to the UK and staying there.
  3. Some organisations opposed to nationalistic sentiments or actions of any kind – good or bad. Not ALL nations, mind, but the UK version was to be abhorred.
  4. Some companies who could see financial loss or inconvenience caused by having to move their headquarters out of the UK or their manufacturing plants into it

I’m sure there were many others, some with genuine concerns for the country and some with genuine concerns for their own concerns.

But have we considered that some of the opposition to an independent Great Britain may come from the rulers of the place? They have been used to a populace that does what they are told – they have been told what to do all the way from William The Conquerer to the last speech from the Crown Prince – and the idea of the locals getting free of the Germans and the French might start them thinking that they’d like to be free of the rulers…

You can’t sing  ” God Remove Our Gracious Queen…” with quite the same poetry as the current words, but then you could always write a new piece of music to go along with it. I don’t think the British populace would think about this at all, but they could change their minds when Charles and Camilla ass-end the throne.

The British And Independence – Part One

I am starting to think that the British have a problem with independence…in all its many forms. And I suspect that they have had the trouble for a long time.

This has been in my mind as I watch the reports on the BREXIT business – reports that have been coming in from them and their erstwhile EU colleagues for the last two years.

They’re in a mess. They seem to want to be an independent nation – they say ‘ once more ‘ – but have not figured out how to implement it. They seem reluctant to even declare it clearly. But I think that this is a hangover from their history of dealing with other people who wanted to be independent.

The case presenting most clearly is the United States of America. They wanted to be independent in 1774 and made the effort of fighting a successful revolutionary war to achieve it. The fact that they won this against Great Britain told heavily in the UK and its echo still is there in the minds of the British people.

The French revolted against themselves  – again successfully  – a few years later and this also tells in modern Great Britain’s mind.

And finally, some former colonies of Great Britain – their overseas empire of resources  – also declared themselves independent after Great Britain spent itself poor in half a century of modern war. And the UK could do nothing but pretend that they agreed…being powerless to prevent it. This is the latest and most acid memory.

Perhaps there is more…tomorrow.

Golden Time

Some people value gold. I don’t – my father’s life was focussed upon prospecting for it too many times – and under harsh conditions – for me to respect it. I recognise it for what it is – a solid medium of exchange that doesn’t vanish. Sometimes I wish it would.

But I also recognise that gold can also be good -particularly when it is as aetherial as light. I like golden light – particularly the golden light of late afternoon.

It’s always been that way. As a child in Calgary, Alberta, golden light was associated with the end of the school day, the release of responsibility, and the commencement of playtime and family time. I make no apologies for valuing these – they were good then and they are good now. And golden light triggers the happiness of these times.

We are in the process of rebuilding the back yard at our house. My wife has a personal vision of garden beds and rockeries and as she is the family gardener, I do not stand in her way. She had the brilliant idea of painting our eastern fence in a mustard yellow paint a few years ago and now when the sun sinks into the west it lights up the fence like a golden band. When you sit out under the pergola or look out as you eat your dinner you get this glorious blast of the essence of afternoon. I could not be happier.

There will be plants and trees and all sorts of garden eventually when the workmen stop laying limestone blocks but for now I am just basking.