Personal Goals…And Most of them Are Offside…


I have decided to bear my sole. A couple of hours stitching claws onto the shoes and it should be complete. The footprints in the sand at the local park should make for some memorable police reports…

On another note, I am commenced upon a process of reform. Once I have arranged my life in perfect order I shall be doing the same for others. As with all revolutions, it will be necessary to have secret meetings, cells of conspirators, and passwords. No, actually, scrub that last idea – I cannot even order apps because I cannot remember my Apple password. Adding more will just lead to further chaos. When I want the door to the plotter’s secret lair opened I will just shout out ” Open the @@#*!! door. “.

Okay, to start with, I need to list my life goals:

a. Become a hazard to shipping in the Channel.

b. Go deer hunting with the Dalai Lama.

c. Eat my weight in chili.

d. Invent a word that eventually gets banned from the New Oxford Dictionary after a personal protest from Gordon Ramsay.

e. Bring back steam trains. Between continents.

f. Introduce a new invisible component to food – one that is so exclusive that only rich people can afford to become intolerant to it.

g. Live in the 18th century for a year.

As you can tell, I am ambitious, but not impossibly so. I realise that revitalising steam trains will be a big-money quest and I am not nearly scientific enough to actually invent a new food chemical. But I am resourceful enough to invent the fear of it, and that may be all that is needed to create a culinary reign of terror. What I have to do is pick a mild disease and attach the food to it and let the publicity machine do the rest.

Now with the Dalai Lama, as soon as I get him to admit that there is a better cartridge than a 45-70-500 we will start to make some progress. He’s a cheerful sort, but set in his ways. Not everyone wants to shoot buffalo rifles.

As  far as the 18th century goes, this would be perfectly fine in many northern countries that had architecture, science, literature, arts, and conversation in the 1700’s. Australia had only the convict settlements and the brutality of  a frightened colonial rule. Not a great deal of fun re-living it. I should remove myself to rural England, France, or North America and take a small cottage in an area that had no electricity  – the Amish country would probably be suitable. A housekeeper and day servants would be all the  help needed and the diet, habits, and daily routine could be adjusted to the period. I should have no books or prints newer than 1799, and no music but what might be made by live musicians. Ah, but what might be written in pen on paper…and painted on canvas…

Note – I should choose a country cottage with scheme water and an WC. I am not a fan of 18th century disease.


The Grim Reaper Just Smiled…


I have not built a radio-controlled boat since 1981 nor a train layout since 1987. I have never made a radio-controlled tank or truck. But I could not help but admire a vehicle I saw on the floor at the Model Train Exhibition. I noted that a lot of other people were crowded around the driving space too – these trucks are an ideal modelling genre for a number of reasons:

a. They are on dry land. No need to build them waterproof or spend hours drying out a moment’s ducking. They must last better.

b. They do not fly – thus they do not need to be lightweight. They can be made of sturdy materials. They do not come home in bags of bits.

c. They do not go fast or drift around corners in races. No fracturing the expensive machinery.

d. They do not pretend to fire off guns. No need to flout local “firearms” regulations to shoot BBs or foam bullets.

e. They do not need a permanent layout to run on. A concrete parking lot is fine.

f. Structures to suit them are seen everywhere and are easy to make up. As they are large models they can be scratch built satisfactorily from materials you get at Bunnings Hardware or Jacksons Art Supply.

g. They do things at a slow pace. Old guys can control them without crashing them into the crowds. The crowds do not expect crashes.

h. They do things that people recognise. Drive, turn, park, load up, get stuck in traffic, etc.


Now we need to see more small vehicles doing more big vehicle stuff. The combine harvester is a commercial model, no doubt, and is probably an advertisement for John Deere. No would be a terrifically satisfying thing to see in operation over a small grassy patch or a carpet that could be “reaped” . I wouldn’t dare to try it because all the old farmers in the crowd would laugh at me. But I’ll bet I could pass an entire day with a toy dragline or steam shovel loading sand onto R/C dump trucks.

Now to win Lotto and go looking at the hobby shop…


PS: If I had that John Deere I would send it out on the front lawn for the mushrooms. This year they are brown instead of white.



The Major Lotto Win


I have an announcemnt. I have had a major win at the Lotto.

I won $ 27.50.

In case you do not think this to be of great import, you must consider that the ticket was a present for which I paid nothing and the Lotto agent paid out on the spot – so I now possess $ 27.50 that I did not possess before. And I had 30 seconds during which I owned the world.

The thirty seconds was the time it took the machinery at the newsagent to go from an on-screen announcement that ” You Have A Winner! ” to actually telling me how much it was. In that half a minute I had riches beyond the dreams of avarice to play with. I am glad to say that I neither fainted nor relieved myself and can enter the newsagency without shame in the future.

Makes you think, though, about what you really would do if the decimal point had not stopped early. We’re about to have a big-ola Lotto draw tomorrow and there is death money in the offing for some people. Time to think what one might need to do if you won – to avoid a sad fate.

Big-ola money is anything over the price of a used Hyundai – people do not perceive you as a mark for admiration, envy, or robbery if all you got was $ 5000. Even your own family would allow you to be happy if you won $ 5000, though they would expect a small slice. It’s when you get bigger money that the eyes in the jungle start glowing and the teeth start flashing. Let’s see if we can quantify it. Note: this is Australian Lotto – not the US or UK.

$ 5000 – family gets some presents – no reaction from the in-laws

$10,000 – family gets better presents – in-laws ring you up and want to come round and drink your health in your liquor. They want about $ 1000 off you.

$ 100,000 – family gets restive – they want a trip as well as presents – in-laws get quite snarky if you do not give them about $ 10,000. Old grudges are dug up and you find that you are the villain of any number of pieces. And the funny thing is…you are the villain whether you give them money or withhold it. The fact that it exists as a separate thing from their wallet is the sin, and whoever is associated with that separation is a sinner.

$ 1,000,000 – you need to consider buying all the immediate family a car. Cars buy off a lot of pressure. The in-laws will now fawn on you, as they can sense a bigger treasure somewhere closer to them than before. Even if they cannot quite think how to get at it, they will want to stay close to it, so the hostility they expressed at the $ 100,000 mark disappears.

$ 3,000,000 – now the family puts pressure for new housing – and big housing at that. The in-laws can be faced down. With that kind of money you need never see them again, and they know it.

$ 5,000,000 – in your own control this is enough to ensure that you need never listen to a sound that you dislike, nor see a sight that offends you. Try to be pleasant about it all, but you can afford to walk away from anything at any time.

$ 10,000,000 – Death ground. Danger from family, friends, strangers, and in-laws. If you are seen to be standing between greed and this much money you will need to fight like a demon for your safety.

The real secret in all this is not to use the automatic machine at the newsagency to check your tickets. Do it yourself via the newspaper or website or some other anonymous means. If you use the newsagency machine your win is instantly trumpeted to all and sundry and attracts trouble like syrup attracts flies.

Should you hit upon one of the big ones through the vagaries of fate and mathematics, go yourself to the head offices of the Lotteries Commission and conduct all negotiations in private. Insist upon as much privacy as possible – do not become a media target. If necessary, have a solicitor or banker conduct negotiations as they can be legally forced to silence.

Money in hand, consider carefully who ever gets to know. Should you wish to purchase the love and fealty of your family, in-laws, friends, or general public, consider that any time you exchange money for it they do not give receipts and if they eventually cheat you of what you thought you bought…you cannot sue them for it.