all right

Occasionally adding corroborative details to add verisimilitude to otherwise bald and unconvincing,
but veridicous accounts
with careful attention, indefatigable assiduity, and nice discrimination.

28 January, 2011

Deadly Poisonous Creatures: a Brief Tragedy

Encountering Venomous Frogs and Poisonous Octopus*

Chorus:  Behold! Australia, great southern land,
          but bloody danger-filled, you understand.
          Here be an ocean beach, a tourist trap:
          a pleasant place, but ripe for some mishap.

[Two holidaying men are lying on the sand of an Australian beach.  Despite weeks of lazing in the sun, both men are pale.]

Bruce:  My skin itches; a drowsy numbness pains 
          my limbs, as though in thistles I had rolled:
          attacked I was by fierce, venomous frogs.
          The vicious things were crazed and sans remorse!
          Wherefore, I ask, doth this odd, fearsome land
          allow within these foul amphibians

Kev:  That’s nothing.  I was just nibbling on some
          of this supposedly fine octopus—
          and after countless sennights carefully
          avoiding scary, local fauna, note—
          but ’twas not safe, ’twas poisonous!  Therefore,
          I go, quite peeved, to everlasting rest,
          and shake the taste of indigestible,
          world-wearying flesh.  Mine eyes, look your last.

[Both men expire.] 

Chorus:  Envenomed toads and frogs and cobs and snakes
          and fish and also centipedes oft doom
          such men—and poisonous molluscs withal.
          Beware, who seek antipodean thrill:
          for nearly anything you meet can kill
Echo & Reverb:  Can kill, can kill, can kill. 

* from The People’s Therapist:  “A friend of mine recently returned from Australia.  He was amazed to find nearly every living creature that walks, swims or crawls Down Under can turn out to be deadly poisonous.  It was incredible, he said – they had venomous toads and frogs and spiders and fish and snakes and centipedes and jellyfish and even a poisonous octopus.  Just about anything you met could end up killing you.”
Australia also contains numerous creatures (such as sharks, crocodiles, and the occasional infuriated wombat, peeved poteroo or manic bandicoot) which can kill without the aid of toxins.  Despite the multiplicity of lethal beasts, strange to relate, very few Australians are slaughtered by animals.

10 January, 2011

Tim Flannery Not a Corpse Animated by Ants

Mrs A. Zimmer, of Blackmans Bay, has reported that some ants recently wrote a message on her kitchen bench. “At first,” she writes, “I thought that I must have spilled some cordial, for that occasionally attracts ants, and was about to wipe them off the bench with a wet cloth when I noticed that lines of the formidable formicidae were forming phrases on the Formica, in a rather elegant, cursive script, so I hastened to grab a note-pad and quickly transcribed their message.”
The ants wrote:
Attention.  Don’t wipe us!  Heed our message!  Greetings humans.  Our queen—in mysterious communion with all other queens of ant-colonies worldwide—bids you publicise our pronouncement.
We ants are not to be blamed for any stupidities recently formulated by the piffling propagandist, pretentious paleontologist, presumptuous prick, and professional prophesier of desiccated cities, Tim Flannery.  He recently predicted, inter alia stulta, that the earth would soon be revealed to be a living, physical manifestation of Gaia, an earth-mother goddess of the Ancient Greeks.
Gaia brought forth Uranus, the starry sky, to cover her, and the hills, Ourea, as well as the fruitless deep of the Sea, Pontus; later, she lay with her son, Uranus, and bore Crius, and the Titans Hyperion, Iapetus, Theia, Rhea, Themis, Mnemosyne, Phoebe of the golden crown and, of course, mighty, deep-swirling Oceanus and lovely Tethys—ἄριστον μὲν ὕδωρ*; afterwards, she bore Cronus the wily, youngest and most terrible of her children, for he hated his lusty sire.  Gaia was the mother (and, at the same time, the grandmother), we recall, of three Cyclopes: Brontes, Steropes and Arges.  (Polyphemus, the Cyclops whom Odysseus encountered and blinded, and his brothers were Gaia’s great-grandsons).  Gaia was also the mother of multitudinous other monsters, including the Hecatonchires—Cottus, Briareos and Gyges, who each had fifty heads—and Typhon and Echidna, who were, together—maintaining the family tradition of incest—the parents of the two-headed Orthrus, the three-headed Cerberus, the many-headed Hydra, the Chimæra, and many more.  Does Prof. Flannery expect physical manifestations of Olympian Gods, Titans, monsters and other offspring of Gaia to appear among us soon?
Flannery considers the earth-mother manifest, in majestic spheroidal form, as one living organism, so how would he account for the Greeks’ belief in a separate underworld, a separate ocean, and a separate sky?  Also, if Gaia be one living, homeostatic organism, why is Flannery so frightened by a silly, unproven conjecture which insists that the earth can be completely and catastrophically unbalanced by a small increase of the beneficent gas, carbon dioxide?  Surely, a system which is inherently stable owing to negative feedback should resist minuscule changes dependent on positive feedback.  We ants, who come and go in long battalions, have been around for many millions of years: we have seen the continents drift, the days lengthen, the ice caps increase and decrease, and many fools come and go.  We, horrescimus referentes, have seldom seen a fool as egregiously silly as that Tim Flannery.  We categorically deny having anything to do with such a buffoon.
As for the claim that we were recently responsible for animating the corpse of the late Robyn Williams, we repudiate any suggestion that we should ever authorise anything as stupid as some of his recently published comments.  We shall not discuss the ABC’s Tony Jones, on the grounds that any discussion may incriminate us.
Our queen bids you farewell.
* “Greatest, however, [is] water.” Pindar, Olympian, 1, 1.  The ants appear to be affirming, rather learnedly, that Oceanus and his wifely sister Tethys, whose offspring included all the rivers, fountains, and lakes of the world, were the gods most important for earthly life; even the hills and seas are supported by Oceanus (Hesiod, Theogony, I., 129-31).
† The well-read, myrmidonian account of the origin of Gaia and her offspring is seemingly based on Hesiod, op. cit., I. 115-38. Gaia in Hesiod’s cosmology, is a disk surrounded by Oceanus and floating upon a waste of waters.

Robyn Williams Dead

ABC Radio today released this notice:
It is with deep sadness and not a little relief that ABC Radio announces that Robyn Williams is dead.
We had thought that he might have been in decline for some time as his
Science Show, once a deservedly renowned, cutting-edge presentation of scientific debates and discussions of modern discoveries, had become in recent times, too often, merely a regular quasi-religious rant from Williams on the perils of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming—a pseudo-scientific fraud. Revelation came to us recently after he presented yet another biassed show featuring his silly mate, the perpetually wrong-headed, doom-predicting, arch-nitwit Tim Flannery—who dilated on his expectation that, any day now, the earth would be revealed to be the physical manifestation of the Ancient Greek goddess Gaia—then, shortly afterwards, Williams followed that broadcast with a semi-literate scrawl on The Drum suggesting that, among other idiocies, the world will soon be ‘globalised’.
Robyn Williams will be remembered as a man who, at least for a while, years ago, exemplified in his reports the best of ABC Radio presentations.  He will be sadly missed.

An insider at ABC Radio, speaking anonymously, revealed further details:
This news does not come as a surprise.  Many have suspected for several years that there was something seriously amiss with Robyn Williams and, employing Occam’s razor, some of us reasoned long ago that he was actually dead.  The fellows around the office have even had a book on this for some time. In fact, some of us believed that Robyn Williams’ skull might have contained, instead of a decomposing brain, a colony of ants.  After all, even that fatuous fathead, Tony Jones, and other official spruikers for AGW within the ABC were disconcerted by his odd claim that the seas would soon rise by one hundred meters when other shrill, pseudo-scientific shills for the global-warming collective have prophesied that the seas may rise a few centimeters over this century.
The final straw came the other day, when ‘Robyn’ announced that his next show would consist entirely of an exegesis of The Protocols of Zion, as interpreted by his favourite astrologer, which would prove that the Israeli Government was responsible for global warming.  Even for the ABC, a known haunt of crazed Jew-haters and irrational conspiracy-theorists, this was too much; senior programmers suggested to ‘Robyn’ that he undergo a medical test to prove that he was in fact alive and not a reanimated corpse.  Unfortunately, the remains of Robyn Williams then savagely attacked the programmers, and attempted to eat their brains. Fortunately, senior programmers at the ABC are notorious for their lack of brains, and they escaped relatively unscathed; but the enraged corpse of Williams then leapt from a window, breaking several limbs and losing his head in the process, and was last seen stumbling away towards a Scientology centre.  For several hours, however, the head remained on the car-park, announcing certain doom for mankind unless the West raised huge, punitive taxes on everything and committed to eliminating all industries.  It was all very upsetting to his former friends and colleagues.
We too, here at “All Right, All Right”, offer our sincere condolences to the friends and family of the late Robyn Williams.