Christine Milne’s fantastic Budget reply speech – the truth at last

This speech, in response to the fascist LNP Australian Government’s draconian budget, is simply brilliant. The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

I’ve been a Labor voter for decades but I’ve come to see, over the last year, that the Greens are the ones that represent the true values I believe in.

Thank you for this speech Christine.

SHIRLEY CLAMP WAS ROBBED!

Stupid fucking Swedish televoters.

Shirley should have been ‘direkt till final”

SHIRLEY-WAS-ROBBED-2014

Janet Leon’s New Colours

Stockholm Pride was the usual disorganised shambles this year……Stockholm Gays couldn’t organise a root in a brothel. However, one very good thing did come out of it this year.

Each year a song is chosen as the “Official Pride Song”. Some are okay, others barely passable. But this year they’ve turned up an absolute gem!

Janet Leon’s “New Colours” is absolutely brilliant. A great lyric set to a thumpingly fabulous tune. And even a package of remixes to shake your groove thing to on the dance floor.

The 7th Heaven Remix is particularly delicious – as Scandipop notes here.

I saw Janet perform this at Pride a couple of weeks ago and she really sold it. I’ve just returned from overseas and had the chance to buy the track and all the remixes and well…just WOW!

Here is the lyric video for it….enjoy. (And buy it if you like it!)

Glenda Jackson debunks Thatcher eulogising that’s been going round since the witch died.

Fabulous speech throwing some reality into the faux-sadness that seems to be pervading the reactions to the death of Margaret Thatcher. Thatcher was an evil c*nt. End of story.

Glenda Jackson reminds us why this evil entity should not be remembered with any fondness or respect.

Yes, Julia Gillard is still Prime Minister of Australia. Thank God!

Julia Gillard is still Prime Minister of Australia

Julia Gillard is still Prime Minister of Australia

What a day! And they say a WEEK is a long time in politics. Oi vey!

But thank god at the end of this day Julia Gillard is still Australia’s Prime Minister. The list of her achievements is long and distinguished. Not that you’d ever know it from reading/watching/listening to the Australian media.

What will happen in six months time? Who knows? It seems our future is to be decided by the self-obsessed greedy bogans of Western Sydney.

Then Australia will really need to say “God Help Us!”

Virgin Australia – whatever you’re on, can I have some???

Virgin Australia make flying easy

Virgin Australia make flying easy

Now look here Virgin Australia (aka Virgin Blue), what’s going on?

I’ve just had two fabulous, peaceful, friendly, efficient flights with you in the space of a week! Are you on something????

My Christmas holiday began with a godawful Qantas International Flight from Sydney to Adelaide on QF81 (20 Dec). Arghhh! We were herded into a departure gate area that comfortable fit about 60 people…all 200+ of us were expected to fit. The flight was due to leave just after 12noon but boarding wasn’t due to begin until 11.45am. Who the hell does that? The gate staff were pfaffing around talking to each other and basically being rude to anyone who went up to them and asked if they could board/why they couldn’t board etc. They even sent a couple of business class passengers away – twice! I was gobsmacked.

They made an occasional rude announcement telling us to relax and take a seat. The only thing is that 100-150 of us couldn’t take a seat because they were all occupied. It was almost like a send up of the Qantas we all know and hate: badly organised, inadequate facilities and rude staff treating passengers like garbage.

The flight was the same. 1 set of crew each side to serve an almost full A330 plane. My travel companion and I didn’t get served anything until more than half the elapsed flying time to Adelaide. The service was shoddy and indifferent. There was one older, bald guy serving who was amusing and polite. The rest were little better than department store dummies.

Not being able to have even a cup of water for so long his really annoyed us because the plane took off half an hour late (they were still boarding when the departure time came and went). No explanations why. As we left the plane I thought “oh those poor bastards who will be on this plane for another 7-8 hours for the flight to Singapore!”

Anyway, it was a good reinforcement to not fly Qantas wherever possible.

But back to Virgin….

We checked in at Adelaide – or Bag Dropped-Off – in the morning for an late afternoon flight and the check in lady couldn’t be nicer. She changed our seats, reprinted our boarding passes and made us feel quite valued! Then the actual flight from Adelaide to Melbourne was terrific. Fast, great smiles and friendly service. They came around with the trolley in good time and were all happy, happy, joy. joy. We bought drinks and food and parted with the credit cards without any concern 🙂

Arrival at Melbourne was also fab – bags off quickly and we jumped into the Skybus and were in town before we knew it!

I thought “oh well, pretty good but probably a one-off.”

But last Monday afternoon, after a week’s holiday in Melbourne, we experienced the same thing – fun, friendly check-in (or Bag-Drop-Off) staff member. Then boarding was smooth and the service on board was also good. The only thing of concern that was, in row 6, with the purple plastic barriers of business class in our way, there was no way we could see any of the safety demonstration. All we saw was the top of the cabin crew member’s head as she stood in business class and did the demonstration.

Overall, we loved the flight. It landed on time or early and the bags didn’t take forever to arrive either.

Two for two!

I have had good Virgin flights before but I’ve had some bad ones. Where the staff thought they were in “Australia’s Next Top Model.” But I think something has changed – consistency is the word that keeps coming to mind. To have one good flight is excellent – but receiving a consistently good level of service is what you want as a traveller. And Virgin Australia seem to be providing that.

The 737-700 and 737-800 we flew on both were modern and clean and did not feel claustro as far as leg room is concerned. That is another big plus.

Anyway, I just had to share…I used to love flying sooo much then Qantas and British Airways turned into card carrying c*nts and it all got ugly and unattractive. I really hope Virgin Australia continues to make it enjoyable again. It’s not just getting from Point A to Point B like in a bus. It’s F-L-Y-I-N-G – it should be a great experience!

 

 

MYKI is tricky and dicky!

Melbourne's MYKI system is a farce

Melbourne’s MYKI system is a farce

I’ve just spent a week in Melbourne on holiday trying to come to terms with MYKI – the new ticketing system for their public transport system. OMG….it is a pain in the arse!!!!

Firstly, there were supposed to be tourist packs available but there weren’t when I decided to travel. I eventually bought a MYKI card – no actual fare value on it – for $6 at a 7/11. I then topped it up with another $10. I think the $6 thing is an absolute rip-off. You have to buy this card but it isn’t worth anything. As Liza would say “Tahhhhrifffficcc!!”

Then you can’t register the card on line for 24 hours – I have no idea why – it is all supposed to computerised and they’ve spent over 1 billion dollars to set it all up. Then, after 24 hours, when you finally are able to register, it then takes up to 4 hours to receive an email that everything is completed and active. What is this, the 1960s????

Even when you do register – which you need to do to keep track of what you’ve spent what they’ve charged you, top up on line etc. – any time you use your MYKI card to go on a bus or a tram or a train, it doesn’t show up in your account on the website for a day or so. How f*cking useless is that?

But the absolutely piece-of-resistance is this: trying to touch on and off. What a farce!!! In all the times I used MYKI my tap on or tap off only registered first time correctly ONCE. Every other time it felt like being a failed magician – the ‘trick’ of touching on or off just didn’t work. I had to try and try and try again – and I saw others in the same predicament. I’ve used Oyster Card in London and that city has about eleventyzillion more commuters than Melbourne and tapping on and off works fast and efficiently. Did Melbourne spend a billion dollars plus on a $2-Shop version of a ticketing system???

And then we have the “when do I touch off” dilemma. It was hilarious watching the discussions of frustrated transport users about this. In fact, you don’t have to “touch off” if you’ve been travelling only in Zone 1 and are exiting a tram in Zone 1. This doesn’t apply to trains or buses. Of course if you’re catching a tram for a journey solely in Zone 2, you must both touch on and off! Oh my god how it confuses people. And then there’s the question of Zones. No-one I heard discussing it, actually knew what was Zone 1 and what was Zone 2. And don’t even mention poor old tourists like me! I was more confused after reading the multi-paged MYKI brochure that I was at the start.

And you can forget about getting a cheap fare if you’re just going a couple of stops on the tram. No, under the MYKI system please pay for a full two-hour fare no matter what!

So MYKI is a system two Governments have approved and signed up for. And despite similar systems working well around the world, Melbourne & Victoria seem to have signed up for “Brand X” model!

Oi vey!