Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Holier than thou

"Almost two million enforcement orders have been issued to Victorians who have failed their fines in the past financial year.  
The latest annual report by the department's Infringement Management and Enforcement Services shows enforcement orders rose more than 6 per cent on the previous year to about 1.86 million." Here is a link to the full article but you may not be able to read it as it is a partly paid service. 
A bit more copy and paste: "Enforcement orders are issued when infringements remain unpaid and can result in a range of actions from suspension of vehicle registration to bailing a person to appear in court.
The total number of infringements issued in the past financial year hit almost 5.07 million, compared to 5.32 million the year before.
The range of infringements included traffic, parking, public transport, speeding, drink and drug driving and other transgressions. Traffic infringements accounted for the majority of notices issued.
Victoria Legal Aid is alarmed by the rise in people facing harsh disciplinary action, including court appearances." The newspaper article goes on and on.
In 1975 I sat for my driving licence. I was not perfect and received a 98% score. I had issues with not having a perfect score, but the criticisms were not too unfair. I saw where the testing person was coming from. I was perhaps wrong that I did not use my left indicator when reverse parking. I was not wrong about using my rear view mirror. I was told to swivel your eyes to your mirror, rather than turn your head. But by not turning my head to look at the mirror the tester said I did not use my rear view mirror enough. I did.
I once parked illegally in town in a minor street when I and someone were going to a movie. Fair cop, Guv. The handwriting of the policeman reminded me of the Lawson poem with the line, 'written with a thumbnail dipped in tar'. Not that my handwriting is so good. I hate handwriting and avoid it at all costs. "R, can you fill in this form for me?"
My next fine was when I took an ill friend to the Alfred Hospital and overstayed a space. I received a fine. Fair cop, Guv. The friend payed the fine. 
I will just park here illegally for only two minutes at the ANZ Bank in Balaclava in about 1979. Fair cop, Guv. 
I am not liking this fining thing. Perhaps I need to legally park, and ever since I have.
We all break rules at times, but there is a time and a place. On a quiet and straight country road, I once wound my Valiant up to 96mph before she reached valve bounce. That is 155 km/h. Terribly irresponsible, but I was a stupid youth of 18 growing up in the country. My knowledge of cars was the only connection the young gay Andrew with his non gay compatriots of his age. 
Almost every day for the last 40 years I have driven daily to and from work five or six days a week. I have driven so often to the shops. I have driven when we are holidaying. I hate driving, but it is necessary so often. In that whole time I have never received any sort of driving fine.
I am not perfect. So often the mellifluously voiced Madame GPS tells me, "You are over the speed limit". It is usually by one or two kilometres, and usually as I am slowing down after the speed limit has dropped.  She of course takes no notice of my often vulgar remark back to her, and she so often gets in wrong, such as a week when schools are on holidays and she warns me of the school speed limit and tells me I am over the speed limit.

We pay big time to use toll roads and I am so against the concept of roads being privately owned, but we pay. Many of the fines accumulated mentioned above are for driving on a private toll roads. 
Given all the driving I do not received any fines, so don't expect people with multiple fines who can't or won't pay them to receive any sympathy from me. I have such schadenfreude feelings when I see the Sheriff clamp vehicles for unpaid fines, especially if they are expensive vehicles. 
If I can park correctly and basically obey the driving laws, and pay the fee for using toll roads, then why can't other people? The above story speaks of people with umpteen multiple offences.  If you are poor and can't afford to use toll roads, then you must take the longer route, which may not be much longer at all.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Musical Monday

River may join me this Monday for Musical Monday. I was nearly going to add this to my post with photos of Naples, as the song begins with a reference to Napoli.

There is something about Ms Loren, and I am one of the last people who could objectively judge the sexiness of a woman, but yes, there is just something about her. As well as having a bright and catchy tune, check some of the gorgeous clothes and cute men in the clip too. It is a compilation of movie scenes set to the music. 2:54

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Sunday Selections

Joining in with River for Sunday Selections. I have a bit of a backlog of photos and some of these date back to summer. I have a feeling I may have used some of these before. If so, sorry.

Lincoln Square in Carlton just outside of the CBD and near Melbourne University has recently had a makeover, rendering it skater proof. I used to hate the way kids would skate over and around this memorial to the 2002 Bali bombing victims. 

Note skate board proofing.

A glorious elm tree (and maybe a Moreton Bay fig) with the memorial fountain in the foreground.

202 people were killed, 91 of them Australians. There are pinprick lights embedded in the fountain paving, one for every Australian killed.

See how you go on your skateboards here, lads.

Checking emails in peace?

Moreton Bay Fig.

Nicely designed.

What do we want? Grass. Where do we want it? Everywhere.

Did I deliberately frame this shot like this? I can't remember.

There has always been signage there but the skaters never took any notice.

It really did look its best when I visited.

So many tall buildings.

Across the road from The Highrise, Shannon Bennett's Cafe Vue folded and the premises has been empty for some time. A notice for liquor licence for a a Benny Burger restaurant went up, but nothing has happened. In the meantime a Benny Burger has been opened by Shannon Bennett in Richmond.

Meanwhile at the former Albert Park Manor, which has been redeveloped into apartments, no one has taken up the ground level lease for a cafe or restaurant.

This facade faces away from us, but we have seen the rear gutted and completely rebuilt. It seems to have taken years and it is still not finished. I will show it when it is completed.

A really nice and well cared for block of flats. I can't remember where it was now, perhaps South Yarra.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Family Stuffs

R is so much better at talking to people than I am. Here is why.

Firefighting Nephew called today. He does not normally call Auntie Andrew, so it must be important, and it was.

Ex Sis in Law, his mum,  has been in hospital having an infected cyst removed from under her arm. She is home now.

Ex Sis in Law's husband has been in hospital with an ear problem. He will return to hospital next week to have a knee replacement. Then later, the other knee must be done.

(Intervention) R spoke to Ex Sis in Law on the telephone as I began to write this. There were tears, me included, as I sat on the balcony pondering)

Tradie Brother went to hospital in ambulance and has a bowel ulcer. He has had surgery and will be in for a few days and has a stomach band. He called Mother just after he was out of surgery and made no sense at all to her. He wanted to hear Mummy's voice and reassurance. Mother always being there for her children is something I will focus on at her funeral, and in times of strife for her children, she really has been there to do her duty. Some of you may wonder why we put up with her nonsense at times, but she was a very good and understanding mother to us and we never went without. She knew I was gay before I did and that was not in a time where gay children were so readily embraced. She complains about Sister and Bone Doctor, but not about them being two women together. She tried to find a wife for ABI son, to no avail, but she worries more about him than any of her other children.

It is Oldest Niece's 29th birthday. She is in town for a knees up with mates, while Ex Sis in Law, just out of hospital, looks after Little M and Little Em........and one of the twin baby girls.

The other twin girl is being looked after by her Islander dad. The twinnies are undergoing a quick weaning.

So what has happened to Hippie Niece with her twin daughters? She has had a total breakdown and is drugged to the maximum at the local hospital. There is a four week wait for placement at a good hospital to treat her, as her Specialist said (specialist in what?) to treat the most extreme case of postnatal depression he/she has ever seen. If you remember, the twinnies were no longer born than they flew off to New Zealand for their paternal grandfather's dying ceremony.

I've spoken to Mother tonight. She is worried and concerned but calm. Firefighting Nephew called his gran today after he called me, and he cried on the phone to his gran. He has done his part, being down with his sisters and mother and doing looking after the twinnies.

Oh dear, we were out on the balcony looking at works being done down below and I cracked and burst into tears, a five minute interlude while writing this post. I want to give Hippie Niece a big hug and tell her everything will be ok, but she doesn't even want to see her own mother, her twin daughters, let alone us.

Oh yes, it did go all go so wrong after R's humour when Ex Sis in Law rang. R said to her, what are you lot doing keeping doctor's in Porsche's? Little did we know, and it went downhill from there.

We can't help anyone in a practical way without offering money. I will text Ex Sis in Law with some kind words and ask for Hippie Niece's partner's phone number and find out how short of money they are and see if we can help there, but really, while they don't have money, money is not the problem.

Anyway, off to see Little Jo perform tomorrow. As cousins, Little Jo and my other nieces and nephew will never really connect because of the age difference. Little Jo is kind of more age connected to our great nieces. But those branches of the family may well not connect in the future. Little Jo's life is so different to the other side of family. Not better, not worse, just ever so different.

Care for a little Art Deco? Developers don't.

Flinders Street to the west of city spine Swanston Street is reasonably intact and not dominated by highrise towers. This building seems to be very old, early Victorian perhaps. It is now occupied by the edgy clothing shop, Dangerfield.

Just a bit further along is this very attractive Art Deco building, once a small department store, then the offices of the gambling company Tattersalls and now housing the organisation Yooralla, a specialist charity for assisting the disabled. I should think it is as well maintained inside as it is on the outside.

But guess what! A developer, Mormas Land Pty Ltd, wants to demolish the building and build a high rise hotel on the site. Here is what may happen. The council refuses a demolition permit. The company appeals to the Victorian Civil Administrative Tribunal, which against the wishes of the council and I should think most of the population, yields to the developer, allows the demolition and development go ahead. Bastards. We don't have a lot of Art Deco in our city. It should be treasured and kept. What fine apartments or a hotel could be built within the structure.