Saturday, January 27, 2007

Put a Bloody Sock In It for Gawd's Sake!

I’m with Tony the Teacher: Straya Day gets on my tits.

For one thing it’s turned into bloody Straya Week, if not Straya Fortnight. Sometime around mid-January, it seems that someone at The Age at least, woke up from the national stupor known as the “silly season” – the time of the year when every paper in the country prints nothing but fluff because all the journoes want their Christmas break and if they’re not interested in writing real news stories over the annual holidays then obviously no-one’s going to be interested in reading real news stories either. Hey, Australia Day’s coming up, this hack thought, why don’t we run a series on Aussie values.

So we got a whole bloody week of navel-gazing on the Strayan tradition of the Fair Go, what it is to be Strayan, what Strayan values are and how are we going to get the lint out of the national belly-button? With the national digit would be the obvious answer, if this government hadn’t shoved the national digit firmly into the national anus with a clear intention to keep it there.

I was looking forward to getting up this morning with the whole thing over and out of the bloody way. Obviously I’m not getting enough lamb in my diet. But no – instead the paper was filled with pages of bloody Straya Day post-mortems on who did and said what, where, to celebrate the fact that Straya has a really gorgeous innie, thanks to the deft scissor work of the Founding Obstetricians.

One celebration of Australia Day that was notable by its absence – a welcome non-event - was the Great Australian Bikini-March, originally scheduled for early November last year. This was the absurd protest organised by Christine Hawkins, a “Melbourne grandmother” against the sexist remarks of Sheikh al-Hilali. Ms Hawkins brilliant idea was that Melbourne women would send al-Hilali a message by parading their exposed innies and outies outside a mosque in Brunswick.

Well, when you’re a middle-of-the-road Australian who wants to send a message to the Muslim fundamentalists in our midst, I suppose one mosque will do as well as another – and it’s certainly easier for a “Melbourne grandmother” who lives somewhere in the outer south-eastern suburbs of Melbourne to get to Brunswick than Lakemba – it’s just a couple of hours on the train at a cost of a few dollars for the round-trip, much cheaper than an air-fare to Sydney and a taxi to Lakemba, with the added complications of check-in times and getting through airport security. As for the residents of Brunswick who might take exception to the idea of their streets being used for a provocative protest with an obvious potential to get nasty, who gives a shit? Those latte-swilling elitists should have got rid of the enemy in their midst years ago.

John Howard’s Straya – don’t you love it? Maybe next year, I’ll make more of an effort and slip down to the nearest halal butcher to get some halal sausages to toss on the barbie on Straya day. Apparently, halal sausages are quite delicious.

(Cross-posted at Larvatus Prodeo)

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