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» Complaining

not exactly a complaint
But seeing as most of the stories this week seem to be about people in authority being pricks, have this.

My sister in law's cousin's father in friend was driving home through Sydney after work one day, tired, looking forward to a cold beer etc. when he sees blue lights in his mirror and a cop pulling him over.

Surprised, but not alarmed, he pulls over and the cop gets out of his car, strides in a manly fashion up to his car and grins through the window.

"there a problem officer?" he asks.

"Yep... you didn't indicate when changing lanes at the stop light there mate*. I'm afraid it's a $60 ticket for you" chuckles the traffic cop.

"OH, come on, mate, don't give me that, you aren't seriously gonna give me a ticket for that, are you?" he asks, with some incredulity.

"yes mate, I'm afraid it's the law. And I fucking love it, I've been pulling people all day on that one" chunters the cop, writing out the ticket and presenting it with a flourish.

Queue MUCH grinding of teeth from inside the car, a counting to ten, and a sigh, followed by an unbuckling (keep it clean, there).

"Do you mind if I get out and show you something in the back of the car?" says our hero, our man of the hour, as he unfolds himself from his car on that hot, dusty Australian afternoon.

"Sure" says the cop, completely untaken aback "what you got in there?"

"This" says the driver, pulling on his work coat and silly hat, with the logo of the health and safety inspectorate on it.

"I noticed as you stepped from your vehicle onto the highway, in the course of your work, that you failed to don your high visibility jacket, as clearly stipulated in the H&S rules covering your profession. I hereby officially caution you and serve you with a $1000 on the spot fine. Sorry mate, but I'm afraid it's the law".

He says it was the happiest moment of his life, and still dines out on it some ten years later, and I think we all can take a quiet personal revery from a beautiful moment.

*or some esoteric pissy local traffic law
(Mon 6th Sep 2010, 0:48, More)

» Protest!

a tale of two cities
this story won't be news to anyone who's every been to the Middle East, but the 'moon on a stick' thing made me want to tell it, in the interests of perspective.

While I was in Kuwait, there were a number of protests, of greater and lesser magnitude, at polar ends of society. The working (under)class had the temerity to protest once when the water and power in their district was 'browned out', during the summer 55 degree heat and dust storms. The buses that they had to take to work were being blocked by bedouins in pickups, meaning that in order to make it out of the district they had to pay crippling fees to ride in the back of an open truck. Oh, and they hadn't been paid for something between 6-12 months, depending on the employers.

Grim. desperately, inhumanly grim.

So of course the riot police, in armoured cars, were wheeled out to show a bit of muscle, crack some heads and generally restore a degree of fear sufficient to ensure acquiescence.

Meanwhile, on the corniche, near the parliament buildings, the good Kuwaitis in their pristine dishdashas and flowing ninja suits were also protesting; chants in the streets, traffic blocked, sandals being thrown.

What outrage were they protesing?

The government, the third in 18 months, had failed to come good on a *RUMOUR* that it would wipe out all personal debts to Kuwaiti citizens.

Yes, that's right: people (I use the term out of habit, not without distaste) were protesting because they had recently gone out and bought new cars, boats and watches on credit because they thought the government would cancel their debts after the election. Crazy? No, it had happened twice before in 8 years; complete credit amnesty.

Meanwhile, indentured labourers, suicidal, desperate slaves were being beaten to death not 5 miles away demanding the right to at least *be able to get to their place of work*.

So the next time I see a hoody with an iPhone and a pair of expensive trainers throwing a brick through a window, I feel like offering him a little less moon and a little more stick.
(Sat 13th Nov 2010, 14:18, More)

» Nights Out Gone Wrong

the invincible warrior
second hand story, no apologies.

My mate Lee was out with a group of friends one night in Brizzle and one of the group was becoming a bit over-refreshed. So much so that, for reasons that no doubt seemed good at the time, something* was put in his drink.

At which point, he became THE INVINCIBLE WARRIOR! He decided that it was extremely urgent that he tell everyone at the table that he was THE INVINCIBLE WARRIOR! over and over again, until, perhaps a little unkindly, they suggested he try spreading his good news around the bar.

Funnily enough, not everyone took to meeting THE INVINCIBLE WARRIOR! particularly well, and before long, it became time to leave in something of a hurry; Last anyone saw of him, he was picking himself up off the floor and berating his newest assailant "YOU CANNOT HURT ME! I AM THE INVINCIBLE WARRIOR!"

Our erstwhile hero awakes the next morning in a state of enormous pain and great confusion. Cut lips, swollen cheek bones, black eyes, bruised ribs, the lot. Having no recollection of the previous night, and thinking he may have fallen off the beer scooter on the way home, he decides the best thing to do is get himself up to A&E for a proper looksee if anything is broken.

A weary, worldly '18 hours of dealing with you idiots' triage nurse greets him with barely a raised eyebrow and murmurs... "hmmm. Thought you'd be back. We tried to treat you last night, but you kept saying you were invincible..."

*may have been more drink
(Sat 26th Mar 2011, 21:53, More)

» Nights Out Gone Wrong

not me, honest
but a guy who drank at my old local. Too pissed to open his own front door, kicks it down, helps himself to a can of coke from the fridge and sits down to scan the late night TV for some cheap porn.

wakes up in the cells the following morning...

Had forgotten he'd had moved house earlier that year. After about an hour the poor souls hiding in terror upstairs dared to venture downstairs to phone phone the rozzers (this was pre-mobiles) only to find their burglar asleep on their sofa in front of the testcard with his trousers round his ankles...
(Thu 24th Mar 2011, 22:46, More)

» Road Trip

Day trip to Florida
I was having dinner with a friend in Toronto who was umming and ahhing about the cost of a flight to a family reunion in Florida. A friend leaned across the table and suggested she 'just drive there'.

On being told, in no uncertain terms, that To/Fla is over 2000km, her friend scoffed and announced that her parents used to drive her family there in hours.

On being shown an atlas, and given a stern lecture in geography, she started to doubt herself and called her mum, who calmly informed her that as children they had been drugged insensible prior to a marathon 30hr journey, and in her late twenties genuinely thought that the other side of the continent was only a couple of hours away...
(Fri 15th Jul 2011, 16:35, More)
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