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Last updated on June 10th, 2017 at 06:36 am

Michael Totten has decreed that I am now among those who are it. So I have to answer these questions:

You’re stuck inside Fahrenheit 451, which book do you want to be?

Michael Moore’s Stupid White Men, because then I’d deserve to burn.

Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?

Yes. It led to fictional stalking, a pretend restraining order, and eventually a make-believe jail term.

The last book you bought is:

In French. Trust me, no matter what discounts they offer, never order from The last book in English: something by Joe Queenan. I forget the title.

The last book you read:

Rogues, Villains, & Eccentrics: an A-Z of Roguish Britons Through the Ages, by William Donaldson. Sample entry:

Carlton, Sydney (1949- ), painter and decorator. Those who argue that bestiality should be treated with understanding had a setback in 1998 when Carlton, a married man from Bradford, was sentenced to a year in prison for having intercourse with a Staffordshire bull terrier, named Badger. He defence was that Badger had made the first move. “I can’t help it if the dog took a liking to me,” he told the court. This was not accepted.

What are you currently reading?

Nothing. Starting next week: Paul Ham’s Kokoda.

Five books you would take to a deserted island.

Five copies of The Inflatable Crown Balloon Hat Kit, by Addi Somekh. Each copy contains thirty durable balloons, so I could make a boat and go somewhere that has magazines. I prefer magazines.

Who are you going to pass this stick to (3 persons) and why?

Iowahawk, because at least four books he mentions will contain the words “cammer”, “flopper”, and “Toploader”;

Professor Bunyip, because he’s Australia’s finest academic;

And Shelly on the Telly, because she’s a brand-new blogger who deserves to be put under pressure before a hostile audience of thousands. Also, Shelly is a TV reviewer/performer—from Queensland—so I don’t think she has actually read any books. Her bluffing will be sensational.

Posted by Tim B. on 03/26/2005 at 08:41 AM
    1. OK Tim, what’s your horror story?

      I ordered a book from France (actually it was from via Amazon USA) which was allegedly shipped on February 21 and still hasn’t arrived.  I emailed them twice, once in each language, no reply to either.  Any suggestions?

      Posted by Sonetka’s Mom on 2005 03 26 at 10:22 AM • permalink


    1. Also, Shelly is a TV reviewer/performer—from Queensland—so I don’t think she has actually read any books. Her bluffing will be sensational.

      Well, at least she read mine, ya non-manuscript reading bastard.

      Posted by Mike Jericho on 2005 03 26 at 10:52 AM • permalink


    1. Is “it” one of “Them”, the giant radioactive ants?

      “Well, I’ve been searchin’, I been searchin’. Searching every which-a-way, yea, yea…But like those North West Mounties, you know I’ll bring [it] in. Gonna find [it], woo-hoo.” [Coasters]

      Sorry, just getting coffee’d up.

      Posted by J. Peden on 2005 03 26 at 01:39 PM • permalink


    1. Something wrong with someone calling their dog “Badger”

      Probably the answers of Carlton, Sydney to a) b) c) “Wind in the Willows”

      Posted by rog2 on 2005 03 26 at 05:09 PM • permalink


    1. and d) e) f)

      Posted by rog2 on 2005 03 26 at 05:12 PM • permalink


    1. Shelly is a bit of a babe.

      Since registering with Blogger is too much trouble, I will say it here instead: The Office is a brilliant show and I have the entire series on DVD. It is a fine, funny and ultimately celebratory look at our flaws.

      Of course, Queenslanders are still trying to master the gramophone.  Gosh, aren’t Sydney types hoity-toity?

      It sounds like Michael has finished his book.

      Posted by Major Anya on 2005 03 26 at 06:42 PM • permalink


    1. “What are you reading, comrade?”
      This is supposed to be Barry Jones’ (former ALP President and longtime scholar of everything) customary greeting.
      I shrink from the subject partly out of recognition that it is a game of one-upmanship, another chance to get in the dominant handshake.
      I was once keen on all sorts of things, from Literary Masterpieces to Thrillers and Humour. To have studied Australian Literature with Dorothy Green is a memory to treasure. These days I would have to admit to non-fiction, such as bios on business ikons.
      Tim is right to give the test a flippant backhander.
      No doubt people at parties still engage in the mating rituals. Somebody once wrote many years ago, with a more filmic bent (probably in the National Times) – “they meet and, having agreed on their admiration for Fassbinder and Wertmuller, can proceed to bed.”
      I’m sure that with Barry, it is more genuinely intended as a conversation starter.

      Posted by blogstrop on 2005 03 26 at 07:37 PM • permalink


    1. You’re right Timmy I’m from Queensland and we don’t ‘preciate no book learnin’ folk. Them readers are darn run outta town along with their hippity hop music.

      My Daddy told me I was too purdy for books that’s why I chose TV. Autocue is like a book isn’t it?

      And you tease my ability to stoush it out yet you do with a game of “it”. Jesus you’re tough.

      For my answers you’ll have to check out Shelly on the TellyShelly on the Telly

      Oh and I defend including The Office on my worst TV list cause I hate black comedy and find people who do like it quite disturbed.

      Posted by Shelly on the Telly on 2005 03 27 at 12:31 AM • permalink


    1. Why, Shelly Honey, yew all knows that when Big Daddy Tim says thaings laahk that about yew, he reeelly laaaahks you!

      Posted by blogstrop on 2005 03 27 at 02:42 AM • permalink


    1. Tim

      You spoil sport, I had an interesting time clicking on the taggers, reading their responses, and just wasting time on a sunny Sunday afternoon when I should be outside.  I did get down to Cronulla beach for an hour, what a glorious Easter Sunday.  There’s some strange blogs out there.  Up to now, I haven’t ventured too far from Tim’s site and his immediate links.  It was interesting to see how some people took this stick thing seriously, others flippantly.  I ended back at the source, someone called Barrie at the Pink Bee.  There are about 20 blogs between Tim and Barrie.  If I do the maths right, this stick thing may have gone to 3,486,784,401 blogs.  Struth!!!  There wouldn’t be that many book written.

      Since I don’t have a blog, I’ll think up some answers and post them here.  I’ll try to make an honest attempt at most of them.

      Tim, should add an update and tag Margo.  I’m sure you can bend the rules just a tad to tag 4 persons.  You’ll make my day if you tag Margo.  Please …


      Posted by Stevo on 2005 03 27 at 03:45 AM • permalink


    1. Darlene

      I think Sydney Carlton thought Badger was a bit of a babe.

      Posted by Stevo on 2005 03 27 at 03:49 AM • permalink


    1. You’re stuck inside Farenheit 451, which book do you want to be?
      A phonebook, A-K or L-Z, or Jonathan Livingstone Seagull by Richard Bach, short and silly, just like me.

      Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?
      Susan Brown in Room at the Top by John Braine.

      The last book you bought is:
      Cannot remember.  I usually buy magazines or borrow from the library these days.

      The last book you read:
      According to Skull by Kerry O’Keefe, it’s my son’s book.  An interesting and quick read on a real character of Australian cricket.

      What are you currently reading?
      Velocity of Honey by Jay Ingram, a science book from the library.

      Five books you would take to a deserted island.

      Origami by Robert Harbin
      Origami 2 by Robert Harbin
      Hansard (didn’t say I’d read it, I’d just fold it)
      Encyclopedia Britannica (after I read it, I could be interviewed by Denton)
      Here’s Luck by Lennie Lower (or anything written by Lennie – Australia’s funniest writer by far)

      Who are you going to pass this stick to (3 persons) and why?
      A bit difficult if I don’t have a blog, but they would be:
      Margo (I’m curious)
      Blogstrop (I like to annoy people)
      Barrie (the person who started this stick can end it)

      Posted by Stevo on 2005 03 27 at 03:53 AM • permalink


    1. Shelly, Kath and Kim and The Office are surely cut from the same cloth. Both satirical looks at the everyday.

      The Office follows a fine British tradition (eg Tony Hancock) of characters with a lot of foibles (arrogance combined with insecurity, psuedo-intellectualism, barely concealed bigotry etc).
      There has always been a black side to comedy. Classic slapstick depended on people finding someone falling over funny. There is, of course, a dark and disturbed side to human nature period.

      Have to agree with your assessment of Dancing With the Stars. Proof indeed of human nature’s dark side.

      Posted by Major Anya on 2005 03 27 at 06:22 AM • permalink


    1. Darlene

      Why don’t you start a comedy meme or stick as your blogging swan song?  As to The Office, I thought it was pretty good, I think I’ve worked with all the types there, even David Brent.  I laughed at Gareth, smiled at Tim, but sometimes was embarrassed at watching David.  I think the production team did such a good job at making the comedy that I thought I was watching a real fly-on-the-wall documentary.

      Here’s five of my British comedy faves:

      Tony Hancock
      Dad’s Army (there’s a relationship to above entry)
      Peter Cook and Dudley Moore
      Derek and Clive (no relationship to above entry)
      Benny Hill

      The late Benny Hill has been un-PC since rudely dying.  Sad.


      ps: I’ve got another 30 top British comedy favourites, but I think Andrea might edit them.  So you only get five.

      Posted by Stevo on 2005 03 27 at 07:36 AM • permalink


    1. I’m off to bed … here’s the source URL … … was this site the first? … cheers … Stevo

      Posted by Stevo on 2005 03 27 at 08:39 AM • permalink


    1. What class are you?  (A test for participants in the Tim Blog).

      Read the following and figure out where you fit.


      The illiterate unwashed.  Those who fail to work hard and do what they’re told.  They are welfare dependent, criminal, or beg on the streets.  For the most part they are unable to take meaningful control of their lives.  Often subject to racism and public abuse, this class now contains the mentally ill who’ve been shifted from care centres to “the community�?.

      The promise for underclass people is that they will one day be able to join the working class.  Increasingly the question is “why would they want to�??

      Working Class

      The class without which society cannot function, their role is to build, operate and maintain all the machinery and products of industrial production.  Housing, transport, energy, policing, raw materials, agriculture, infrastructure and all forms of services are provided by this class.

      If organised into either syndicates or trade unions, this class may exercise sufficient power to regulate capital and ensure social cohesion and fair distribution of wealth.

      The promise for working class people is that they will be one day able to join the middle class.  This can happen in a minority of cases.  Many working class people today mistakenly believe they are already middle class.  Sorry.  In a recession they are likely to go the other way and become underclass.

      Middle Class

      This class is expected to police the behaviour of the working class, and of each other.  The classic definition of middle class is that they are able to profit by applying their own labour to capital they own (small business).  In reality they are a sub-set of the working class.

      In Australia this definition is increasingly conflated with “owning a nice house�?.  The middle class use politeness and gossip to police each other and pronounce sentence on the working class.  They act like the Communist Chinese neighbourhood committees, and call the uniformed police whenever confronted with the underclass.

      The middle class like private school and University education, although they are more likely to become engineers, accountants, and teachers than doctors, lawyers or managers.  They believe this makes them an elite, but today it is just another form of working class activity.

      The promise for middle class people is that they will one day be able to join the owning class.  This hardly ever happens. In a recession they are likely to go the other way and become working class or underclass.

      Owning Class

      This class holds title to sufficient real property, equities and finance instruments to live comfortably without having to work at anything real.  They hardly ever pay tax.

      As property speculation drives up the price of property, the value of capital generally increases, and you have to be a real idiot to lose your capital.  Warwick Fairfax and Rodney Adler come to mind.

      Due to expanding family numbers, the owning class like to train their children in the well-paid professions, like Law, Medicine, and Commerce.  They have a whole range of indicators to inform them about whether people they meet are genuinely owning class, or simply middle class wannabes.  (Knowledge of Opera is a good one, who your relations are is another)

      The owning class aren’t promised anything, and in a recession put all their money into real property and lay off workers until it’s over.  The owning class condescends to the middle class (from a distance), and is never confronted by the working class except for domestic servants whose general conversational gambit is “will that be all sir, or do you require something else�?.

      Bluto Crats

      Owning class people with a whole big load of capital who are freed from all social constraints.  You know who you are, and there aren’t many of you.  I worship the ground you walk upon (honest).


      Tim and contributors to his Blog are for the most part working class losers.  Some have pretensions to the middle class, but just don’t have enough money.  The uncritical adoption of prejudice, the brutality towards people of different belief, and the touching belief in hard work as the means of ladder climbing all indicate that you will be willing brown-shirts for the Bluto mob.

      Tim is thrown the occasional bone by his betters for giving his adolescents permission to act naughty.  He may even believe he has a social relationship with his betters.  So he does, but only in the way a gun has a relationship with the President.  How was the Grand Prix Tim?  Get a free meal did we?

      It’s not too late to change.

      Posted by ssssabre on 2005 03 27 at 11:52 PM • permalink


    1. sssabre, keep on insulting people here and you’ll get banned.

      Posted by Andrea Harris, Administrator on 2005 03 27 at 11:55 PM • permalink


    1. Andrea,  grovel, grovel, grovel, oh please, not banned, not that, anything but that.

      I’ll be your slave.  I’ll worship your old cigarette buts, I’ll pretend what you say makes sense.  Anything at all,

      Take my first-born for sacrifice, take my money, my self-respect.  It’s all yours if only I can keep reading this drivel.


      Posted by ssssabre on 2005 03 28 at 12:10 AM • permalink


    1. ssssabre
      What drivel … the stuff that you just posted?  I would certainly call that drivel.  I think you’ve just wanted to insult Tim and his readers, wrapped up in a ramble about class.  I’d be embarrassed posting what you’ve put up as analysis.  I can’t see too much argument in your spray.

      Posted by Stevo on 2005 03 28 at 12:53 AM • permalink


    1. Why do they bother to hang around for so long if all they are going to do is unload a demo of half-witted social chips-on-the- shoulder?
      (we must be sssssso fascinating!

      Posted by blogstrop on 2005 03 28 at 04:38 AM • permalink


    1. Bryla, a troll is a troll is a troll.  You, however, are a fool as well as a troll.  Especially if you think that you are an intellectual of some sort.  Trust me, you are not.

      Posted by The_Real_JeffS on 2005 03 28 at 12:54 PM • permalink


    1. More Gollum than troll.
      Needs a new class for himself – the Dunderclass. Sad how that feeling of not belonging has twisted the psyche.

      Posted by blogstrop on 2005 03 28 at 05:06 PM • permalink


  1. “Dunderclass”!  LOL, blogstrop!  That fits the twit perfectly.

    Posted by The_Real_JeffS on 2005 03 29 at 04:46 AM • permalink