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About cjscjs

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  1. cjscjs

    Mal has been on the blower.

    Oh how I remember breast of lamb, was the only meat my mother could afford, I have never been able to eat it since, brings back too many bad/sad memories. off topic but............it's 5.99 a kilo where I buy in bulk................dearer than blade steak or leg of pork!!! And while I'm at it, why are lamb shanks often dearer than leg of lamb? Oz is a funny place when it comes to pricing meat?
  2. cjscjs

    Shipping a car from Australia to Uk

    Simply not worth it, cars are cheaper in the UK, also there are modifications you have to do in order to bring them up to UK spec, so that they can be driven on British roads.
  3. cjscjs

    Are we kidding ourselves ?

    Hi Toussaint, would you be able to supply me with some documented proof for a Honda CRV at the price you quote (in Australia) because my wife is in the market for one at the moment and we would travel a long way for one at that money, we are talking about a new one, right?
  4. cjscjs

    And the UK election result is.......

    I won't be holding my breath for that one.
  5. cjscjs

    And the UK election result is.......

    It is now. Reeeeesult
  6. cjscjs

    Taking VW Kombi back to the UK

    Can you let us know the company you used, $2900 is a very good price.
  7. cjscjs


    Someone on PIO once asked, "what are the road rules in Australia compared to the UK". The answer was, in Australia, 1) You MUST always drive at least 20km above the speed limit. 2) You MUST drive no more than two metres away from the car in front and 3) You MUST change lanes every thirty seconds, apart from that everything else is the same. Something you'll never hear spoken in Australia. "I slow down and take extra care during times of inclement weather".
  8. The New Australian version of Godwin’s Law This organ is a personal release valve for me to vent my spleen at the unusual, the alien and the plain ridiculousness of life in Australia for a middle-aged Englishman with a good tailor and reasonable sense of apostrophe placement. It’s very useful in that regard; I get to express opinions on here I would otherwise have to internalise. That some of you appreciate these and, in the main, share many of the views I have, helps to maintain my sanity. In public, I tone down some of the more controversial themes because, as I quickly learned on arrival, Australians are not as thick-skinned and robust as their preferred public image would portray. A hint of this is apparent in the well-known expression, “whinging Pom”. Rather than questioning why someone with experience gained elsewhere might be suggesting something is sub-optimal, the locals prefer to label this as frivolous whining. Of course, this conclusion can’t be drawn for Antipodeans living in London who complain bitterly about the weather because that’s obviously different; a bad weather experience somehow being the fault of the English….. rather than a poor choice of clothing by the visitors. Nonetheless, in my real life dealings with Australians, I’ve realised that I can bring them to a tipping point quite easily and that, at this monent, we reach the Australian immigration version of Godwin’s Law, that is, when the phrase, “well, if you don’t like it here, why don’t you go home, maaaate?” is offerred as a well-thought out and articulated argument. I’m having great sport along these lines with a relatively new colleague who I managed to goad to the WDYGHM (why don’t you go home, maaaate?) point twice in December. Both involved some alcohol. The first was when I was describing my many children in response to a question from someone else. She has only the one child, conceived by IVF (as she explains, unprompted, to strangers at every opportunity). Apparently, I had somehow offended her with my fertility. Ponder that as a concept for a moment. The second was because I’d suggested that politics in New South Wales seemed somewhat venal to the eyes of a recent immigrant. So imagine my delight in hitting the WDYGHM jackpot only a day and a half into the working year and without recourse to alcohol! It would seem that reminding her that not only was “Advance Australia Fair” a bit of a shite anthem compared to other countries and only superceded “God Save The Queen” in the 1980s but the unofficial anthem, “Waltzing Mathilda” was about a thief’s suicide and therefore was a bit strange as a national tune. “Why don’t you go home, maaaate?” Because I AM home. How’d ya like them apples? One Response Tim Newman says: Ah yes: Somebody called me a Whinging Pom when I complained that the internet in the hotel cost A$27.50 for 24hrs (which was capped, and they take care not to advertise the rate on their website), again when I pointed out that supermarket wine is 4 times the price it is in Paris, and once more for not showing sufficient enthusiasm for the notion that Melbourne is a fantastic city. Now if the Aussies are happy being fleeced at every point and turn and genuinely think that everyone should fall in love with their cities then fair enough. But an Aussie complaining about London’s parking charges, the cost of petrol, and declaring Manchester to fall somewhat short of fantastic wouldn’t find himself accused by Brits of being…well, anything. They’d probably agree. Indeed, the Whinging Pom epithet thing seems have turned into a parody of Australians more than a criticism of Brits. This post – which was quite obviously a joke – was seized upon in the comments by a semi-literate Australian whose first remark was that he and his countrymen would be happy to see me on the boat back home. Can you see the French saying that? Or the Germans? Me neither. (Incidentally, one day somebody will write a book on how a nation made up almost entirely of immigrants managed within a few generations to create a society where “f... off back on the boat you came in on” was considered acceptable mainstream opinion. In the UK it’s thankfully confined to knuckle-dragging skinheads wearing swastikas.)
  9. cjscjs

    Communism is alive and thriving in Australia

    Go and live in Russia then, Oh hang on on a minute, didn't Russia ditch their seventy year experiment because they finally accepted it didn't work.
  10. cjscjs

    Things aren't always better!!!!

    Bear in mind I did say in a Nutshell. Tasmania has a cool temperate climate with four distinct seasons. Summer lasts from December to February when the average maximum sea temperature is 21 °C (70 °F) and inland areas around Launceston reach 24 °C (75 °F). Other inland areas are much cooler, with Liawenee, located on the Central Plateau, one of the coldest places in Australia, ranging between 4 °C (39 °F) and 17 °C (63 °F) in February. Autumn lasts between March and May and experiences changeable weather, when summer weather patterns gradually take on the shape of winter patterns.[27] The winter months are between June and August and are generally the wettest and coolest months in the state, with most high lying areas receiving considerable snowfall. Winter maximums are 12 °C (54 °F) on average along coastal areas and 3 °C (37 °F) on the central plateau, as a result of a series of cold fronts from the Southern Ocean. Inland areas receive regular freezes throughout the winter months.[28] Spring is a season of transition, where winter weather patterns begin to take the shape of summer patterns, although snowfall is still common up until October. Spring is generally the windiest time of the year with afternoon sea breezes starting to take effect on the coast. Rainfall in Tasmania follows a complicated pattern rather analogous to that found on large continents at the same latitude in the Northern Hemisphere. On the western side, rainfall increases from around 1,458 millimetres (57.4 in) at Strahan on the coast up to 2,690 millimetres (106 in) at Cradle Valley in the highlands.[29] There is a strong winter maximum in rainfall: January and February typically averages between 30 and 40% the rainfall of July and August, though even in the driest months, the number of rainy days per year is much greater than on any part of the Australian mainland. Further east in the Lake Country, annual rainfall declines to around 900 millimetres (35 in), whilst in the Midlands, annual rainfall is as low as 450 millimetres (18 in) at Ross and generally below 600 millimetres (24 in). The eastern part of Tasmania has more evenly distributed rainfall than in the west, and most months receive very similar averages. The more densely populated northern coast is much drier than the western side, with annual rainfall ranging from 666 millimetres (26.2 in) in Launceston to 955 millimetres (37.6 in) in Burnie in the north west and 993 millimetres (39.1 in) in Scottsdale located further to the east.[30][31] Most rain falls in winter, and in summer the average can be as low as 31 millimetres (1.2 in) per month in Launceston. [TABLE=class: wikitable] [TR] [TH]City[/TH] [TH]Mean Min. Temp oC[/TH] [TH]Mean Max. Temp oC[/TH] [TH]No. Clear days[/TH] [TH]Rainfall (mm)[/TH] [/TR] [TR] [TD]Hobart[/TD] [TD=align: center]8.3[/TD] [TD=align: center]16.9[/TD] [TD=align: center]41[/TD] [TD=align: center]616[37][/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TD]Launceston[/TD] [TD=align: center]7.2[/TD] [TD=align: center]18.4[/TD] [TD=align: center]50[/TD] [TD=align: center]666[38][/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TD]Devonport[/TD] [TD=align: center]8.1[/TD] [TD=align: center]16.8[/TD] [TD=align: center]61[/TD] [TD=align: center]778[39][/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TD]Strahan[/TD] [TD=align: center]7.9[/TD] [TD=align: center]16.5[/TD] [TD=align: center]41[/TD] [TD=align: center]1,458[40][/TD] [/TR] [/TABLE] Climate of England England has a temperate maritime climate: it is mild with temperatures not much lower than 0 °C (32 °F) in winter and not much higher than 32 °C (90 °F) in summer.[120] The weather is damp relatively frequently and is changeable. The coldest months are January and February, the latter particularly on the English coast, while July is normally the warmest month. Months with mild to warm weather are May, June, September and October.[120] Rainfall is spread fairly evenly throughout the year. Important influences on the climate of England are its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean, its northern latitude and the warming of the sea by the Gulf Stream.[120] Rainfall is higher in the west, and parts of the Lake District receive more rain than anywhere else in the country.[120] Since weather records began, the highest temperature recorded was 38.5 °C (101.3 °F) on 10 August 2003 at Brogdale in Kent,[121] while the lowest was −26.1 °C (−15.0 °F) on 10 January 1982 in Edgmond, Shropshire.[122] [TABLE=class: wikitable collapsible, width: 90%] [TR] [TH=colspan: 14][hide]Climate data for England[/TH] [/TR] [TR] [TH]Month[/TH] [TH]Jan[/TH] [TH]Feb[/TH] [TH]Mar[/TH] [TH]Apr[/TH] [TH]May[/TH] [TH]Jun[/TH] [TH]Jul[/TH] [TH]Aug[/TH] [TH]Sep[/TH] [TH]Oct[/TH] [TH]Nov[/TH] [TH]Dec[/TH] [TH]Year[/TH] [/TR] [TR] [TH]Average high °C (°F)[/TH] [TD=align: center]7 (45)[/TD] [TD=align: center]7 (45)[/TD] [TD=align: center]10 (50)[/TD] [TD=align: center]12 (54)[/TD] [TD=align: center]16 (61)[/TD] [TD=align: center]19 (66)[/TD] [TD=align: center]21 (70)[/TD] [TD=align: center]21 (70)[/TD] [TD=align: center]18 (64)[/TD] [TD=align: center]14 (57)[/TD] [TD=align: center]10 (50)[/TD] [TD=align: center]7 (45)[/TD] [TD=align: center]14 (57)[/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TH]Average low °C (°F)[/TH] [TD=align: center]1 (34)[/TD] [TD=align: center]1 (34)[/TD] [TD=align: center]3 (37)[/TD] [TD=align: center]4 (39)[/TD] [TD=align: center]7 (45)[/TD] [TD=align: center]10 (50)[/TD] [TD=align: center]12 (54)[/TD] [TD=align: center]12 (54)[/TD] [TD=align: center]10 (50)[/TD] [TD=align: center]7 (45)[/TD] [TD=align: center]4 (39)[/TD] [TD=align: center]2 (36)[/TD] [TD=align: center]6 (43)[/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TH]Precipitation mm (inches)[/TH] [TD=align: center]83 (3.27)[/TD] [TD=align: center]60 (2.36)[/TD] [TD=align: center]64 (2.52)[/TD] [TD=align: center]59 (2.32)[/TD] [TD=align: center]58 (2.28)[/TD] [TD=align: center]62 (2.44)[/TD] [TD=align: center]63 (2.48)[/TD] [TD=align: center]69 (2.72)[/TD] [TD=align: center]70 (2.76)[/TD] [TD=align: center]92 (3.62)[/TD] [TD=align: center]88 (3.46)[/TD] [TD=align: center]87 (3.43)[/TD] [TD=align: center]855 (33.66)[/TD] [/TR] [/TABLE] [TABLE=class: wikitable] [TR] [TH]pedant ˈpɛd(ə)nt/ noun noun: pedant; plural noun: pedants a person who is excessively concerned with minor details and rules or with displaying academic learning. "the royal palace (some pedants would say the ex-royal palace)" [TABLE=class: vk_tbl vk_gy] [TR] [TD=class: lr_dct_nyms_ttl]synonyms:[/TD] [TD]dogmatist, purist, literalist, formalist, doctrinaire; More[/TD] [/TR] [/TABLE] [/TH] [TH][/TH] [/TR] [TR] [TD=align: center][/TD] [TD=align: center][/TD] [TD=align: center][/TD] [TD=align: center] [/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TD][/TD] [TD=align: center][/TD] [TD=align: center][/TD] [TD=align: center] [/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TD][/TD] [TD=align: center][/TD] [TD=align: center][/TD] [TD=align: center][/TD] [TD=align: center] [/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TD][/TD] [TD=align: center][/TD] [TD=align: center][/TD] [TD=align: center][/TD] [TD=align: center] [/TD] [/TR] [/TABLE]
  11. cjscjs

    Things aren't always better!!!!

    I'm often surprised that just about every English person, in England, who has never been to Australia imagines that the whole of the country has this perfect all year round climate. Well for anyone reading this who fits that category this is it in a nutshell. Tasmania, colder than the UK, more rain and snows regularly. Melbourne, closest to the UK climate. Sydney, like those Spanish holidays you all know and love. Southeast Queensland, (Brisbane) mild winters, hot (+30°c) summers, high humidity. Northern Queensland, Northern Territory, get me outahere. Australia is the same size, actually a bit bigger than Europe and just like Europe it has huge climate variations.
  12. [h=1]Communism is alive and thriving in Australia[/h] Today’s rant was prompted by an hilarious twitter exchange with Bill Johnston, a Labor (sic) MP in the Western Australian parish council state parliament. It being the season of goodwill, we’re going to assume a genuine intellectual struggle (rather than plain ideological obfuscation) to grasp the fairly uncomplicated statement of fact that @thnewaustralian was trying to explain during the exchange, that Australia is unique amongst western democracies by having government-set pay scales for many different jobs and work types; Let’s follow that link shall we and have a look at which other governments around the world feel that it is a good use of their time and their citizens’ money to set minimum wages by geography or job type rather than simply setting a single national minimum wage? I found the following; Bangladesh Barbados Benin Costa Rica Cyprus Dominican Republic El Salvador Grenada Haiti India Iran Ivory Coast Japan Macedonia Madagascar Mauritius Nicaragua Norway Panama Poland Rwanda St. Lucia Senegal Solomon Islands South Africa Thailand Tunisia Vietnam Zambia Generally not the most salubrious of fellow club members, are they? Those Western Australians are a tenacious bunch though and he kept on keeping on with his argument despite being slightly hamstrung by the minor inconvenience of it being completely factually incorrect. Admirable effort sir, well played. The original conversation started about a café that was closing down because weekend penalty rates had made it “uneconomical”. I think the correct adjective is “unprofitable”, but nonetheless, you get the idea; the cost of doing business, including wages for the staff, was greater than the price the market will bear for a cup of coffee on a Sunday. This is Australian business in a microcosm. While we’re all living high on the hog, earning loads of money and the country has practically full employment, this complex system of government-mandated pay rates for everyone from an ambulance driver to a waiter is simply just yet another irritating administrative overhead. Think through how this might work in a recession, however. Take a currently profitable coffee shop; in an economic downturn (yes, these do happen, Australia) many of the present day customers may have lost their job, or perhaps their spouse has lost their job. That weekend coffee might not be quite so high on the list of things to spend disposable income on. The coffee shop has no flexibility with the rate it pays wages for weekend working, paying the “penalty rate” is the law, they don’t have the option of reducing the weekly hours of a couple of their staff and asking them to work weekends at the same rate as someone working a shift on a Monday, for example. There’s really a limited choice available to the owner; have fewer staff working at weekends, put up the price of coffee at weekends or pull the shutters down between Friday evening and Monday morning. Presumably they weren’t running with a surplus of staff waiting tables, so the first option is unlikely and putting up prices at weekends is going to be a fairly certain way of pissing off the dwindling customer base so chances are they simply won’t trade on weekends. By the way, if you want to see an example of how the first option looks like, try getting the attention of the remaining sales staff in Harvey Norman on a Sunday. You can already see option three playing out on public holidays; here in Manli ™ there are several restaurants and cafés that aren’t open on Australia or ANZAC Days, for example. The remaining ones stick a premium on the bill to cover the increased wages cost (option two). Presumably Bill “I’ve never had a job in the private sector in my 52 years on this planet” Johnston thinks that this is as it should be, workers should be compensated for working during anti-social times such as public holidays? The trouble is with your cradle to grave statism, Bill, is that it’s not a zero sum game; my disposable income varies with the economy, as does anyone’s who is stupid enough to not take a cushy public sector or faux public sector job the moment they graduate from university with a degree in Sociology. If our income dries up we will spend less on frivolities such as $4 for a hot cup of milk and water forced through dried imported beans. In addition, we’ll start to become a damn sight more flexible in our approach to employment, taking second jobs or jobs beneath our skills and qualifications. The trouble is, whereas the likes of you and I might consider working a **** load more hours in a week, but at a reduced rate, simply to keep the money coming in, the government has hamstrung the very employers who might ordinarily offer this work to us by intruding in the employer/employee wages negotiation. The argument I’ve heard in Australia supporting the government-mandated awards system is that it protects the workers from being exploited. Well, given that the list of countries that share this approach of massive intervention in the labour market numbers about 30, one can only assume that the other 166 countries in the world are running an exploitative system of serfdom and indentured workers…….. Including the 85% of the OECD nations. The ability to access a flexible workforce is critical to the speed at which a country exits a recession. Put simply, if it’s difficult to fire someone, it’s significantly less likely they will be hired in the first place. Similarly, taking away an employee’s freedom to negotiate their rate of pay also results in fewer employees. It is a straightforward choice between lower rates of pay or higher unemployment and the people who get to make that decision on our behalf are the people in the most secure and recession-proof employment in the country; the political class. That last paragraph might sound theoretical to Comrade Bill but he might wish to print it out and keep it in his pocket for later in the year when he has to explain to his constituents why they can’t accept a reduced rate of pay at weekends and simply don’t get hired on those days instead.
  13. cjscjs

    True Blue

    Bogan Plates Rules Sponsorship and Advertising The Richmond Game Rules What’s this blog all about then? Integration of immigrants is key God knows I’ve tried. Since arriving here I’ve learned to surf, accepted that barbecues can be fueled by gas, managed to stifle giggles when hearing the names parents give their children (“Tayla, tell Jamieson and Kayler dinner is ready!“) and I’ve nearly drunk enough Kool-aid to believe that a million dollars is good value for a weatherboard and tin roof house that lets the draughts through in winter and stores the heat in summer. While I’d like to kid myself that these efforts, whilst admirable, are enough to be considered a True Blue Aussie, they are pathetic by comparison to this gentleman. On the scale from fresh off the boat to fully-integrated immigrants, this chap has really got into the spirit and completely immersed himself into the Australian way of life. There’s probably some scratching of heads going on while you read this but think about it for a while and see if you can follow where we’re going with this…. Non-Australian readers will be particularly puzzled by the suggestion that it is True Blue Australian behaviour for an immigrant who sat by while his daughter got into a relationship with a radicalised Muslim and waved her off on holiday to a war zone to die is now suing the Federal Government you the taxpayer for compensation. Proper Australians would have pricked their ears up at the final noun in that sentence though. Compensation, or “compo” in the vernacular. That’s the clue that Mohammed Karroum has passed the citizen test with flying colours. Onya, Mo! Of course it’s not his fault or his daughter’s fault or his daughter’s Jihadi boyfriend’s fault that they got shot in Syria. Clearly it’s the government’s fault, that much would be obvious to anyone with a Southern Cross tattoo and a Bundy Rum baseball cap. He’s in good company, of course. Recall the woman who injured herself having sex in her hotel room while on a work trip. And there was the woman who ran herself over with her own car who got a cool $140k for being stupid. Sadly, my chance to integrate to the level of professional benefit claimant Australian such as Aussie Mo’ Karroum failed through a cruel timing error. Nonetheless, I have commenced my application for citizenship. I’ll keep you updated on how that goes but, in the meantime, any hints or tips on how to become as Australian as Digger Mo would be welcome (and no, I’m not going to have a lobotomy and a mouth widening-operation).
  14. Let's imagine that Tony decides to throw the towel in and calls an election. Then let's further imagine that labour win that election and Bill "shorty" Shorten becomes prime minister. How long do you think it would be before you are all whinging about him? I'd give it a month max. Lets face it Australia is running headlong into recession and nothing or nobody is going to prevent that from happening. All anybody (the ruling party in this instance) can do is take measures to soften the impact by cutting back, which is what Tony's trying to do. But you, the dear proletariat of Australia don't like that idea very much and poor Tony continually finds his hands tied. When the recession hits and it will, most likely the second half of 2015 it will hit hard. So please don't whinge and whine. Because if you had let Tony get on with his job he might just might have been able to ease the pain. Here endeth the lesson.