Back in the day, if the wife of one of our poker crew was generous enough to allow a game to take place in their house, the lads were always very thankful and respectful. We realised what a disruption eight swearing, drinking, overweight, particularly unattractive, gambling blokes, can be to a mid-week family routine.

One night we were having our game in the rumpus room of Jacqui and “Apollo” (his self-ascribed poker call-sign), under their house.

One of the lads had just returned from two months working in Asia and was giving us the rundown on how a client had taken him to one of those unsavoury places where (there’s no delicate way of saying it)… Thai ladies shoot ping-pong balls into schooner glasses. Of course I had no idea any such places existed.

I know, I know. This is not a very pleasant, nor high-brow blog topic and it is even a pretty tacky conversation for poker boys.

Anyway, we always order pizza and bring our own beers, so there’s never any onus on the hostess to do any sort of hosting. In fact normally, the wives do like my wife and avoid the area like we are playing in a “Tuberculosis, Syphilis and Leprosy-Sufferers Tournament” (one which I’m assuming would find it somewhat difficult to maintain a suitable level of spectatorship).

But most unexpectedly that night Jacqui, being wonderful, walked in with chips, dips, cheeses and crackers. We all cheered loudly, however “Dodgy” (his ascribed poker call-sign), who had been at a harbour cruise all day and had turned up extremely drunk, yelled “GET OUT THE PING-PONG BALL AND SCHOONER GLASS”.

It was an indefensibly sexist and disgraceful comment, which was extremely out of character for the much-loved-by-wives, Dodgy. But because he and Jacqui had been close friends for years, she just said “you’re an idiot Dodgy” and left. We all then got up him for being a drunken swine, so much so that he went upstairs and apologised.

I won the poker, by quite a margin. Played like a man possessed. This has no relevance to the story.

So the next night, three of us lads from the poker and our wives had gone to an Italian restaurant. “Tiger” (his self-ascribed poker call-sign) and Suze, Jacqui and Apollo, my lovely wife Isabel and I, had just sat down.

Me – “Thanks heaps for having the lads around last night Jacqui.”

Jacqui (to the other two wives) – “IT WAS VERY UNCOMFORTABLE! I felt demeaned!” She started to cry.

Issy gave me a look of death, as she consoled Jacqui.

My wife – “What did my husband do?”

Sobbing a bit, she recounted the story of the highly inappropriate, Dodgy ping-pong ball comment.

Eventually Jacqui stopped crying and we had a great night. We told Dodgy the next day the repercussions of his drunken off-the-cuff line. He was mortified, went around there with flowers and ate humble pie. He ate so much pie he would have done Artie Beetson proud.

A month later, surprisingly, we were invited back to the Jacqui/Apollo abode (the site of my magnificent victory) for more poker. We knew we had to be on our best behavior.

Tiger and I were the first to arrive. Apollo had been held up at work. We hadn’t seen Jacqui since she had been upset at the restaurant, so Tiger and I were very much on tenterhooks.

Jacqui asked us, while we waited for the other blokes, if we could help her move a cupboard in their living room. Putting my glass down on the ground (I was responsibly hydrating before our night of beer and poker), I got on one side of the cupboard while Tiger and Jacqui got on one corner each at the other end.

We lifted.

Bing. Bing. Bing.

I kid you not. A PING PONG BALL, dropped out from behind the cupboard at Jacqui’s corner and bounced along the tiled floor.

It felt like one of those moments of impending disaster, where things happen in slow motion. Tiger and I froze, horrified, just staring at the bouncing demon. We knew if this was not managed with aplomb, it may have nightmarish ramifications. Jacqui felt demeaned the first time, a second time could be terrible.

Bing. Bing.

The ball hit my water-glass and nearly went in it.

Thoughts rushed through my mind.

Do we just ignore it? No, one of us surely had to say something sensitive to the situation (that generally would rule me out), yet diffusing.

Do I say – Wow. That’s a bit awkward.

Or – Were you looking for that? 

Or – How did that get stuck behind there?

Then I hit on it.

Me – “You missed.”

There was silence. Tiger strangled a smile. Jacqui burst out laughing. Phew.


Thanks for reading my blog, where I put my heart and soul down in words, for you!

What’s new? I love my Sea Eagles, but Manly make it EXTREMELY difficult to be loyal.

Like a noble, armour-clad knight astride a powerful war-steed, in dogged pursuit of my elusive dream to one day make a living as a writer/blogger, I’ve started writing emails for small businesses, to entertain and entice their customers.

Imagine “Hornswood Pool Shop”, who if they exist are probably spamming customers a few times a year. When it comes to catchy writing that people will actually read, Hornswood Pool Shop are good at… pools.

Perfect pH, but their communications though accurate and informative… are also boring and sadly perish, unloved and unopened.

But thanks to me, their campaigns can be worshiped by the people!

Opened. Read! Cherished!! Held aloft, like the Life of Brian shoe or that chubby little Lion King.

At the moment I’m… low-tariff, because I’m just starting (despite often nearly doubling industry open-rates). Know any businesses who could benefit from having wonder and awe sent out to their database? You’ll allow me to continue claiming at parties much to my wife’s chagrin, that I am in fact, a writer.

If you could Like or Share, to help me become famous, would be wonderful. Twitter?



My brother and I played ninety-eight Port Macquarie lads in a wonderful charity poker event a few months ago. The $100 entry fees all went to the trust, so we were playing for nothing more than pride. Good-hearted, piss-taking banter abounded. I’d been lipping-off incessantly about what a sensational player I am and how I’m called Cool Hand (my self-ascribed poker call-sign) for a reason.

Here’s what happened.

In Texas Hold ‘Em (the Cadillac of poker), you end up with five communal cards on the table and your two cards (called “hole” cards). You then make the best hand, with any combination of the seven.

The communal cards were K 9 K Q Q. When those last two cards came out the Port Macquarie lads immediately yelled “TWO SYDNEY BOYS.”

My two hole cards were Jacks, which were great at the start of the hand, but by the end, being lower than the KKQQ communal cards, were not going to win.

Matty the doctor, had committed a big chunk of his chips. Johnny the plumber, Phillip the lawyer and myself, had already gone “all-in”, meaning we had bet every chip we had. The pot was MASSIVE.

The doctor turned over his hole cards. Ace, 4.

Damn. His Ace, plus the KKQQ, was the winner, assuming nobody had another K or Q in their hands. I readied myself to chuck in my losing cards and head to the bar.

The plumber flipped his pair of 7’s with a loud cheer, incorrectly thinking he had beaten the doctor’s Ace.

Lawyer (yelling loudly) – “READ ‘EM AND WEEP JOHNNY.” He proudly flips a pair of 8’s, thinking he had just pipped the plumber’s 7’s, out of this enormous pot.

I was ready to say “sorry lads, but Matty has knocked us all out.”

It didn’t come out that way.


I held my breath.

They all groaned.

Me – “Bar’s over there boys! You put up a much better show than I was expecting. You play just like we do in Sydney… but less hard… with not as much skill… or insight… with a slightly feminine twist”.

They hurled all sorts of light-hearted abuse at me and left the table.

About an hour later, I had been knocked out and we were standing around having beers.

Lawyer – “F#ck Cool Hand, you knocked me and Johnny out in one hand.”

Me – (with a smile) “Don’t feel bad Phil… I cheated.”

Doctor – “Wait… What?”

Plumber – “Cheated???”

Even my brother had a look of astonishment.

Me – “Had no choice. I was looking at an early exit.”

Oracle (my brother’s self-ascribed poker call-sign) – “And the next hand you used those ill-gotten chips to knock me out mother-f#cker.”

Me – “It’s the age old question fellas. If somebody cheated in a charity poker event, and nobody caught him, did he actually cheat?” I gave a nonchalant, what can you do shrug.


Me – “Hang about, let’s not use the word cheat, let’s go with… bamboozle. Oracle, some of these boys are fairly new to the game, but by you not catching me on the bamboozle, you’re an enabler! On some level, I’m the real victim here, my reputation could have been sullied.”

They stared at me, dumbfounded.

Me – “I just saw an opportunity you guys were offering, to bamboozle, and took it. You were all so excited about 7’s being beaten by 8’s, that I knew you’d be totally thrown by my Jacks. I expected Oracle to loudly out me as a cheat, but he was chatting and missed it.”

I sipped my beer.

Me – “The bamboozlement was not premeditated, but once done, I had to cover my tracks. You must be brazen when collecting chips you haven’t won, or people may intercede. You put your illicit booty just to the side of your proper chip stack, so if you get caught bamboozling you just act embarrassed and slide them back into the centre. Once you’ve bamboozled, you quickly rake in all the cards, so even if somebody is unsure, the moment’s passed.”

Plumber – “Are all North-Shore blokes dodgy?”

Me – “Aaaah, you know… it feels good to come clean. It was getting me down, being a charity event and all. Like a pasta-engorged Mafia boss confessing to a donation-loving priest, it’s like it never happened. Let’s not forget lads, we’re all here for a common cause! We’re all here for the right reason! We’re all here to make a difference! We’re all here raising money for bowel cancer! AM I RIGHT BOYS?”

Plumber – “Prostate cancer.”

Me – “Oh, whatever. Whose shout?”


Thanks for reading my blog, where I put my heart and soul down in words, for you!

What’s new? I love my Sea Eagles, but Manly make it EXTREMELY difficult to be loyal.

Like a noble, armour-clad knight astride a powerful war-steed, in dogged pursuit of my elusive dream to one day make a living as a writer/blogger, I’ve started writing emails for small businesses, to entertain and entice their customers.

Imagine “Hornswood Pool Shop”, who if they exist are probably spamming customers a few times a year. When it comes to catchy writing that people will actually read, Hornswood Pool Shop are good at… pools.

Perfect pH, but their communications though accurate and informative… are also boring and sadly perish, unloved and unopened.

But thanks to me, their campaigns can be worshiped by the people!

Opened. Read! Cherished!! Held aloft, like the Life of Brian shoe or that chubby little Lion King.

At the moment I’m… low-tariff, because I’m just starting (despite often nearly doubling industry open-rates). Know any businesses who could benefit from having wonder and awe sent out to their database? You’ll allow me to continue claiming at parties much to my wife’s chagrin, that I am in fact, a writer.

If you could Like or Share, to help me become famous, would be wonderful. Twitter?



Every third person on the Upper and Lower North Shore, has a law degree. They’re my people, so I’m not anti-lawyer. However…

After a thousand beers, I was busting at a Hornswood Christmas party. There were four people in the toilet cue, so I discreetly headed to the backyard (I know, I know, it’s uncivilised, but my wife had already left, so I had no etiquette compass).

On my way I heard two cigar-smoking guys on chairs in the backyard, mention NRL, so I got sidetracked. I shook the hand of the first guy, Jack Townsend. I went to do the same with the big guy. He put his hand forward, patronisingly limply.

Me – (with a friendly smile) “Jeez mate, your hand’s so flaccid I thought you wanted me to kiss it!”

Jack laughed. Old limp-hand, not so much.

Old limp-hand – “Oh how terribly droll. I am Thomas Davies the third, SC.”

Me – “SC?” I pondered. “You’re not… Santa Claus?” I jokingly pointed at his large gut. “I’m Jase Gram… TCEB.”

Old limp-hand/Thomas Davies III – “SC… Senior Council.”

I realised Thomas Davies III wasn’t taking the piss. That’s actually the way he introduced himself.

Thomas Davies III – “To what does TCEB refer?”

I felt a little inadequate.

Me – “Oh… I thought we were just mucking around. It stands for The… The Clint Eastwood of Bloggers.”

That made him laugh. At me!

Me – “Thomas Davies the third. I know that name.”

Thomas Davies III – “A lot of people do.”

Me – “Weren’t you the rich old guy on Gilligan’s Island?”

Got him.

No laughter.

Me – “Is that a Pommy accent I hear Thommo? You-”

Thomas Davies III (interjecting) – “No, I am just educated. It’s Thomas, in point of fact!”

Me – “Did I hear you lads mention NRL?” The hostility was getting me down.

Thomas Davies III – “I would only mention the NRL if I was in court defending one of their players.” He looked at my drink. “Why am I not surprised you put Coca Cola in your whiskey?” They smiled at each other rudely.

Me – “It’s rum, in point of fact!”

Got him again.

Thomas Davies III – “Do not take this the wrong way, however I have little desire to talk with you.”

Me – “Hmmm, how many ways can I take that?”

Thomas Davies III – “I just don’t think either of us will gain anything, from us having a colloquy.”

Me – “A what?”

Thomas Davies III – “A conversation.” Damn, he was smart.

I was desperate to urinate and he wanted me to leave, but I did not want to give him the satisfaction.

Thomas Davies III – “You simply will not be able to contribute on our topic?”

Me – “Oh yeah? Upon what topic are you palavering?”

Got him a third time. I’ll see your colloquy and raise you one palaver!

Thomas Davies III – “The law.”


Me – “The law it is then, Thomas Davies…” I deliberately left off “the third”.

Thomas Davies III – “Unless you are a lawyer… you… wont… understand. Are you?”

Me – “Well… no I’m not, but you didn’t know that.”

Thomas Davies III – “You don’t look like a lawyer.”

Me – “I’ll take that as a compliment!”

Thomas Davies III – “It wasn’t meant as one.”

Me – “Too late! I have taken it.”

Got him once again.

My bladder was about to explode, but I wasn’t budging.

Thomas Davies III – “You’re a blogger. How cute. To the housewives about cooking or makeup? Obviously not clothes.” He sure knew how to hurt.

He pulled out a pocket watch and checked the time.

Me – “So bloggers can’t be intellectual hey? Tell that to Richard Van Der Sande.” Fake name.

Thomas Davies III – “Who?”

Me (to Jack Townsend, I pointed my thumb sideways at Thomas and said dismissively) – This guy.”

Got him. It had become easy.

Me – “It’s been wonderful Law Dogs, but I have to urinate.”

Thomas Davies III – “Charming.”

Me (as I walked towards the back fence) – “You the urine police? WHO WEARS A THREE-PIECE SUIT TO A PARTY ANYWAY?” I gave him the bird over my shoulder.

Thomas Davies III – “IN A SUIT IS HOW I AM MOST COMFORTABLE.” Man, he had an answer for everything.

I had never been in my mate’s yard before. In the darkness I didn’t notice it dropped away at a 45 degree angle. I stepped out and in a shower of rum and Coke plummeted into the abyss. I tore all the muscles on the top of my left foot (which was to take about a year to repair) and was rolling around in absolute agony. I couldn’t walk.

Me – “FELLAS! HELP!” Silence.


I was hobbled. I had to swallow my pride.


Thomas Davies III – “Yeeees?”

Finally they came down and helped carry me back towards the house.

Me – “Either of you know a GOOD lawyer?”

I was in intense pain and had drink all over my shirt.

Me – “Lads… I still have to piss.”


Thanks for reading my blog, where I put my heart and soul down in words, for you!

What’s new? I love my Sea Eagles, but Manly make it EXTREMELY difficult to be loyal.

Like a noble, armour-clad knight astride a powerful war-steed, in dogged pursuit of my elusive dream to one day make a living as a writer/blogger, I’ve started writing emails for small businesses, to entertain and entice their customers.

Imagine “Hornswood Pool Shop”, who if they exist are probably spamming customers a few times a year. When it comes to catchy writing that people will actually read, Hornswood Pool Shop are good at… pools.

Perfect pH, but their communications though accurate and informative… are also boring and sadly perish, unloved and unopened.

But thanks to me, their campaigns can be worshiped by the people!

Opened. Read! Cherished!! Held aloft, like the Life of Brian shoe or that chubby little Lion King.

At the moment I’m… low-tariff, because I’m just starting (despite often nearly doubling industry open-rates). Know any businesses who could benefit from having wonder and awe sent out to their database? You’ll allow me to continue claiming at parties much to my wife’s chagrin, that I am in fact, a writer.

If you could Like or Share, to help me become famous, would be wonderful. Twitter?



A few weeks ago, thanks to the generosity of some great friends, we were staying in a fancy ski lodge. I had a run-in with six 100% vegetarians in the café underneath.

My wife had already had dinner, so she went upstairs, while I waited for mine.  On the next table sat three ridiculously good-looking couples with perfect clothes, skin, hair and teeth (it was like a table full of Osmonds). They all ordered gluten-free.

Not them, but you get the idea.

The vegetarians had been drinking, were laughing loudly and yelling. I suspected they were wealthy Eastern Suburbs preppies, they weren’t down-to-earth like Upper and Lower North Shore folks.

Me (walking over to their table) – “Howdy Chad’ster (I’d met Chad in the lobby). It’s good to meet fellow vegetarians! You’re ALL gluten intolerant?”

Chad’s wife (I didn’t get any of their names) – The six choose no gluten.”

I burst out laughing. I stifled it immediately upon realising she wasn’t joking.

Chad’s wife – You’re a vegetarian?” She seemed surprised.

Me – “Hells to the yeah! I must admit, though it seems a lifetime ago now, I only came into the light fairly recently.”

Chad’s little mate – “I can’t even look at killers of innocent animals, eating carcinogenic meat. The smell makes me want to puke. Don’t let me get started on the ecological footprint! They’ll all die early, and rightly so.”

Me (not quite knowing what to say) – “I had a vegetarian frittata for lunch.” I smiled proudly.

Chad’s wife – “If it had a face, or if it had a mummy, it won’t end up…”

All the vegetarians answered loudly – “IN OUR TUMMY.”

I was taken by surprise and reeled back slightly.

Me – “Vegetarianism purges my body of past dietary sins. And God knows I’ve committed more than most!” I patted Chad on the back.

My food arrived, so I returned to my table.

Ten minutes later I could hear hushed voices coming from the vegetarians. I flashed a look at them and they were all giving me the old stink eye!

Waiting a few moments, pretending I was reaching for the salt, I snuck another look and there were six great-looking, Eastern Suburbs vegetarians, glaring daggers at me! What had I done?

I heard Chad’s wife’s raised voice, “WELL I’M GOING TO SAY SOMETHING IF YOU WON’T.”

After a few minutes I got a tap on the shoulder. It was Chad with a weird look on his face.

Chad – “Jase, you told us how wonderful it is to be a vegetarian.” He slurred his words a little.

Me – “Yeah mate. Wonderful.”

Chad (pointing at my dinner) – “You’re eating a meat pie.”

I heard Chad’s wife call out “It’s disgusting… HE’S disgusting”.

Me – “What? Oh.” With a friendly chuckle. “I am a vegetarian Chad’ster, but not in the traditional sense. I do eat meat every day.”

I sipped my beer.

Me – “But Chad’ster, I’ve had meat for lunch and dinner, every day of my life. But, now I only have meant ONCE a day. It’s literally a 50% drop in my meat intake. In fact if you include my breakfast of vegemite toast, I’m actually 70/30 vegetarian.” I smiled.

Chad – “Meat every day?”

Me – “ONCE a day only Chad’ster. 70/30, so I’m just rounding up.” I smiled warmly.

Chad – “You cannot call yourself a vegetarian! The six are vegetarians. YOU’RE NOT.”

Me – “You call yourselves the six? Chad’ster I’m… predominantly vegetarian, so surely I should be able to use the cool title.”

Chad – “You’re having meat every day for crying out loud.”

Me – “Of course it’s hard for me to be considered a vegetarian when compared to you purists, you hundred percenters, but surely there are different levels. Anyway, it’s your vegetarians fault, for not having a term that describes somebody who is… pretty much, vegetarian.”


I was taken aback by his aggression. I cut off a huge piece of pie, mouthed to Chad “I’m a vegetarian” and defensively shoved it in my mouth. It was really hot.

Me – “Looook Chad’ster, I’m on holiday with my family. I don’t want any trouble. I’ve become 70% since Sunday, but what if, in the spirit of compromise, I don’t call myself vegetarian until I’m say… 80/20?” Chad shook his head.

Me – “How about this, what if I call myself… a Meagan? A meat eating vegetarian.”


Me (sensing Chad’s dissatisfaction I quickly racked my brain) – “How about a vegemeatagain?”

Chad gave me a look that said, God I hope the bottom falls out of your share portfolio. All the vegetarians stood up to leave, just as my lovely wife arrived.

Chad’s wife (she stopped and staggered a little at my table) – “We all think what you’re doing is a HORRIBLE… loser.” On they walked.

Me – (speaking to my wife, loudly so the vegetarians could still hear from the door) – “I SHOULD HAVE GONE VEGETARIAN AGES AGO DARLING! IT’S BLOODY EASY!! I MAY NOT BE A HUNDRED PERCENTER, BUT THE COW IN THIS PIE CERTAINLY WAS!!” I rammed some more pie in my mouth.

My wife looked incredulous.

Me – “Not my fault! The six are vegetarians who won’t let me call myself one!”

My wife – “I was gone ten minutes!”


Thanks for reading my blog, where I put my heart and soul down in words, for you!

What’s new? I love my Sea Eagles, but Manly make it EXTREMELY difficult to be loyal.

Like a noble, armour-clad knight astride a powerful war-steed, in dogged pursuit of my elusive dream to one day make a living as a writer/blogger, I’ve started writing emails for small businesses, to entertain and entice their customers.

Imagine “Hornswood Pool Shop”, who if they exist are probably spamming customers a few times a year. When it comes to catchy writing that people will actually read, Hornswood Pool Shop are good at… pools.

Perfect pH, but their communications though accurate and informative… are also boring and sadly perish, unloved and unopened.

But thanks to me, their campaigns can be worshiped by the people!

Opened. Read! Cherished!! Held aloft, like the Life of Brian shoe or that chubby little Lion King.

At the moment I’m… low-tariff, because I’m just starting (despite often nearly doubling industry open-rates). Know any businesses who could benefit from having wonder and awe sent out to their database? You’ll allow me to continue claiming at parties much to my wife’s chagrin, that I am in fact, a writer.

If you could Like or Share, to help me become famous, would be wonderful. Twitter?



Rugby camp with my son, was always one of the annual highlights, until –

Years ago, sixty dads and our Hornswood Junior Rugby-playing sons, attended a Northern Beaches fitness camp, bonding weekend. Canoeing, archery, orienteering, climbing, swimming and watching rugby with our sons all day. Then at night the dads sat around with beers, while the kids ran wild.

But this year there was a new Camp Supervisor from Germany, a big, serious guy.

Bartlet Bachler (addressing all the dads and kids) – “I am Camp Supervisor Bart Bachler. Fathers are not allowed to drink zhe alcohol outside of zhis dining hall, which will close at nine o’clock.”

I was way up the back, the sixty or so kids (and plenty of the dads after hearing the rule) were nattering loudly.


That’s what I thought he said. The place erupted into laughter.

Bartlet Bachler – “BART BACHLER!” He shot me a look of German Camp-Supervisor wrath.


Anyway, ten dads and kids had been allocated to our room. On the second night, one dad (who I didn’t know) had to head back home for some work emergency. His son Tyrone, was a really fat kid, played in the front row in another team.

Dad I didn’t know – “Can you keep a rough eye on little Tyrone for me tonight?”

Me – “It’ll be a very rough eye indeed (I waved my beer). Isn’t there somebody more responsible you could ask? It’s a classic how you call him little Tyrone by the way!”

Dad I didn’t know – “What do you mean?” He looked at me quizzically.

Me – “Nothing…”

We swapped mobile numbers.

We had eskys strategically hidden around the camp. If anybody saw big Bart Bachler coming, the call of JEEVES would go out and we would all hide our beers.

At 11:45pm I was still sitting around having contraband beer. All the kids and the Butt Butler had gone to bed. I got a text from “Dad I didn’t know” – I’m confident you’ll still be up Jase, ha ha. Just checking on little Tyrone.


I hadn’t thought of him since “Dad I didn’t know” left that afternoon, about eight hours prior.

I text back – Will advise.

I rushed to our room.

Little Tyrone’s bed… IS EMPTY.



My son (half asleep) – “Dad I haven’t seen Ty for ages. He hit his head on a bit of metal and ran off into the bush crying. We were going to find him, but Charles hit me with a wet tennis ball, so I had to chase him. And then I forgot.”


My mind flashed back to when the Butt Butler came to our room after dinner to do a head count. There seemed to be more than enough running around, so I just assumed they were all there.

The Butt Butler (checking his list) – “You must do zhe ‘ead count.”

Me – “We got no Ed’s here Butler… but we have two Johnny’s!” The Butt Butler didn’t smile. “YOU ALL HERE KIDS?”

The kids – “YES!”

Me – “They’re all here Butler.”

So little Tyrone is somewhere out in the pitch-black bush and has probably bled out. I told my son to go and check every room.

I went to wake up the Butt Butler.

He was not enthused to see me.

The Butt Butler – “VHAT ZHE ‘ELL? Is zhat a beer in your ‘and?”

He crossed his arms angrily. He looked like he was ready to annex Austria.

I rushed to the bin a few metres away to throw the bottle out. I went to swallow the last sip and in my agitated state, underestimated the amount I had left. I tossed the beer into my mouth and a lot more flooded in, than I was expecting. I coughed and the beer went up my nose and sprayed out like a fountain. I erupted into a terrible gagging fit.

Spluttering as my nose and eyes ran, I got a text from my son – All good. He’s asleep in Harry’s room.


The Butt Butler was REALLY pissed off, but I no longer had to inform him that I had potentially, irresponsibly, drunkenly killed one of the kids.

The Butt Butler (in that loveable German accent) – “VHAT YOU VANT???”

I was inebriated and had just been on a roller coaster of adrenalin-laden emotion, so I struggled to think of any explanation for my knocking.

Me – “Sorry… for calling you Butt Butler.” He slammed his door.

Then I get a text from “Dad I didn’t know” – Jason I’m concerned.

Me – Found him!

“Dad I didn’t know” – You’d lost him?

I wondered why these things always seemed to happen to me.

Check out my new writing business, which allows me to claim at parties that I am in fact, a professional writer ( It’d be REALLY awesome if you hit the Facebook Share button below, or just give the post a thumbs up. Cheers.


The old cliché that men have a mid-life crisis and leave their wives, in my group of Hornswood (being my term for the curious little suburbs from Hornsby to Chatswood) friends, seems to be outdated. I know eight couples who have sadly split and in every case except one, it’s the wife who has left. Not the bloke.

I think we are going to find our Hornswood generation is going to be different from past ones, in that regard.

Two of our Hornswoodian friends put on a dinner party, with the express intention of getting our buddy Stu (whose wife had left him a year or so earlier) to meet their friend Kelly, who had split with her hubby years before. So there was my lovely wife and I, Stu, two other couples, the hosts, Kelly (who we’d never met) and her sister-in-law Lana.

Stu, being pretty nervous about being out with the woman who was potentially his first, post-separation date, got a bit… pissed.

Now Stu, is a truly lovely guy and a great mate. He was broken for a long time by his wife leaving him. He’s polite, concerned with other people’s feelings, never swears in front of women, is just a really nice bloke.

Two things happened that night, which he wished… didn’t.

We were all sitting around the table, eating, drinking and having a great time. Stu stands up and in his courteous way, asks if anybody would like a drink.

Me – “Water Stu!” I had a large, orange, plastic tumbler in my hand and threw it to him.

Stu – “I don’t get water for blokes. Alcohol only Cool Hand! (most of my mates call me by this self-ascribed poker call-sign) He threw the tumbler back.

Me – “We’re not freaken sixteen here Stu. You know I never need encouragement to drink beer, I just want a water too.” I threw the tumbler back.

Feeling a bit loose and crazy, with a loud Seinfeld Soup-Nazi voice, Stu yells “NO WATER FOR YOU” and theatrically swiped the tumbler out of the air. It went flying into the living room.

It turns out, that some expensive glassware, actually looks and feels like plastic.

The tumbler slammed into a painting on the wall and shattered! Shards of glass went through the living room carpet, all over “John Howard” the Cavoodle, into the couch and covered the floor.

A relaxed, pre-“incident”, John Howard


Stu was mortified.

He appeared to Kelly and Lana to be a man who had just deliberately smashed a glass all over the next room, because he didn’t want his friend drinking any water.

Anyway, after about half an hour of vacuuming the floor, the couch and John Howard, we all settled back down to the table once more. We all laughed, but Stu felt terrible and kept apologising to the lady of the house.

Meanwhile, I kept mentioning to Kelly that I knew her face from somewhere, but she didn’t know me. We finally worked out that she was the sister of a good friend of mine Roger Angler from school and they look incredibly similar.

Me – “So Kelly, that means Stu took your sister Amy to our Year 12 Formal.

Stu was in the kitchen apologizing again to the hosts.

Kelly – “Oh wow! And Amy is now Lana here’s sister-in-law. Small world.

Thank God, something they could talk about to drag the attention from Stu smoting glasses. I knew he really liked Amy and they were still friends, so they could all sit around saying how lovely she is. What a great conversation piece.

Stu walked back to the table.

Me – “Hey Stu! You remember our mate Roger Angler from school?”

Keep in mind that Stu was quite inebriated and was still recovering from the emotional roller coaster of having glassed the living-room.

Stu – “I do indeed Cool Hand (he said with a smile and a cocky head wobble). He was a dick! Now I don’t wish to talk out of school, you may want to block your ears ladies, but Hot Amy and I lost our virginity together behind Curzon Hall at the formal, with an old Fijian kitchen-hand looking on. She was a wild child and loved the fact that he was watching. Amy was an aaaaanimal. I loved Amy. I thought I was the only one for her. Turns out, I wasn’t even the only one for her that night!” He laughed loudly.

I was not quite expecting that.

Kelly – “My little sister Amy?” Kelly looked perplexed.

Stu – “Huh?” He looked to me and I mouthed the word sorry.

Lana – “The Amy who married my brother?” I wasn’t expecting that either.

Stu just stared blankly. Wordless. Unmoving.

It’s funny, Stu and Kelly never ended up going on a date. There must have been no spark.

Check out my new writing business, which allows me to claim at parties that I am in fact, a professional writer ( It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Cheers.



Every man, wants a Clint Eastwood moment (without any violence of course). I write this self-indulgent blog post, with all due respect to drunk, aggressive, Irishmen.

I was standing in a wine-bar. We’d been drinking for hours, so all my mates had slowly drifted off home. I was left with Charles, a really nice accountant, who I hadn’t met before that evening.

A completely pissed Irish bloke was wandering around aggressively bumping into people. Being a small bar, there was no security, so this bloke felt free to give shit to everybody.

Me – “Remember I was telling you earlier what a great poker player I am Chucky?

Charles – “Yes Cool Hand (my self-ascribed poker call-sign), you made it sound like you’re quite the master.

Me – “You’re about to see, the bluff.

Charles looked at me quizzically.  The drunk Irishman shoved him in the back

Drunk agro dude – “You spilt me F#CKEN beer. Get me another, before I… smash… your… face… in.” He stood really close and looked down at nice guy Charles

Nice Guy Charles – “I don’t want any trouble.

Drunk agro dude – “A F#CKEN DRINK. NOW GAY F#CKER!” He started poking Charles in the chest.

Any fight here, would last about one punch and then I’d be stuck in the middle of it any way. So being pretty pissed myself, I dived into, stone-cold bluff mode.

Everybody in the bar watched, glad the Irish drunkard had moved on from them. He was about my height, but not nearly as heavy. I had to use my 112.4kg size, as my bluff. Whoever said “sometimes the best defence, is a good offence”, nailed it.

Me – “Whoa back there Fightin’ Irish!

I slowly but firmly, pushed the finger he was stabbing into Charles’ chest, down and away. He turned to me. Nice guy Charles was relieved. I wasn’t. My heart pounded, but I had to give a persona of cool confidence. Bouncer-style, I pushed out my shoulders.

If I pulled this off, I was effectively Clint Eastwood. If I stuffed it, I was trading punches with an Irish drunk and I wasn’t banking on nice guy Charles being much help.

Me – “Look here Guinness. By your homophobic slurs and Charles-poking, I suspect you and I are going to be punching the shit out of each other very soon. Now you seem like a decent enough bloke, so in the spirit of full disclosure, I have three things you should know, scrapper.” I sipped my drink.

Drunk agro dude – “I’LL SMASH YOU.

I wanted to flee.

Me – “Number one Guinness, I am twenty kilos overweight. I’m slow. If you dance around like Michael Flatley, I won’t catch you.

I gave him a confident wink. He seemed a bit flummoxed.

Me – “Number two, I have a very sensitive nose Irish. Land a good punch there, and my tears will flow like your Ma’s when you left the old country.

Drunk agro dude – “Me ma?” He seemed a bit confused.

Me – “But here’s the most important thing, Fightin’ Irish.”

I motioned with my hand for him to come in closer. He did. I nearly whispered. I even put my hand on his shoulder for effect.

Me – “I hit like Thor’s… fucking… hammer!

He looked at me and blinked.

I was overjoyed with my presentation. I spoke slowly, calmly and… toughly. Just like Clint.

Me – “I thought you’d want to know.

He stumbled and steadied himself.

Me – “I can see you really want to have a scrap. I get it, you’re Irish and you’re on the grog. It’s not your fault. But what you certainly don’t want to do… is lose a fight. Not in front of all these people.” I smiled at him warmly.

Because he was practically falling down drunk, through his face, I could nearly see his thoughts ticking over –

I want to smash this f#cken Aussie! He’s been insultin’ me. He’s slow an’ has a weak nose. I can’t lose. These rich pricks’ll know I’m a fighter just like Pa was… But hold on now… Thor’s f#cken hammer?? I don’t want to get hit by Thor’s f#cking hammer! An’ he give me all that voluntarily. Who’d say they hit like Thor’s f#cken hammer if there weren’t somethin’ to it? OH SHITE. I’ve picked THE WRONG F#CKEN GUY! Of all the soft suits in ‘ere, I picked the wrong f#cken guy. F#CK.

Me – “Maybe it’s time you left Irish. You can’t take a pint of Guinness, drop a potato in it and call it a cocktail, in this place.” I was on a roll.

He stared at me for a few seconds more. I put my beer down. He turned and left.

The patrons all gave me polite applause. I was Clint Eastwood.

Charles – “Holy shit Cool Hand. You’re a fighter!

Me – “Jeez no Chucky. I’m just a great poker player.

Check out my new writing business, which allows me to claim at parties that I am in fact, a professional writer ( It’d be REALLY awesome if you hit the Facebook Share button below, or just give the post a thumbs up. Cheers.


My brother-in-law “Carrot”, the world’s nicest bloke, recently emigrated here with my sister from Nottingham. Being a Pommy, he’s nervous around things that slither and crawl, which is unfortunate when you are staying in leafy, insecty, spidery, snakey, Hornswood.

Let me recount Carrot’s first day in Australia.

I had made a poem for him, so he’d know what’s really dangerous in Oz, and what isn’t.


Australia has a myriad of spiders,

that can bite and really hurt.

The ones to be shit-scared of Carrot,

are the black ones, in the dirt.


Oz is full of many snakes,

most won’t try to bring you down.

The only ones who’ll fu#k you Carrot,

are the big ones, coloured brown.


So my lovely wife Isabel and I went in two cars to the International airport because they had heaps of luggage. Carrot and I were packing the bags in the back of mine, in the car park.

I politely opened the passenger’s door for Carrot. He went to get in and then recoiled in absolute horror.


Sitting in the centre of the passenger seat, was the most enormous Huntsman I have ever seen. Even by Hornswood big-arse-spider standards, it was huge. It looked like a Blue Swimmer crab and seemed to be rising up and down as it breathed.

I had seen Mr Huntsman a few days ago, as he ran across the outside of my windscreen and nearly gave me a heart attack. But I’d forgotten about him.

Me – “LOOK OUT CARROT!” I moved him aside. I was pretty keen to get rid of this unwanted arachnid.

Not wearing thongs, the quintessential Aussie spider-crushing tool, I had to squash him with the size ten Blundstone boot I was wearing. As I lifted my foot, he ran under the seat. Luckily he popped out on the floor of the back.


I landed a boot flush on top of the monster and squashed him flat! I don’t like spiders. I don’t “rehome” them. I was happy with myself for exterminating this one, considering it was in my vehicle.

I looked to Carrot. His mouth was ajar. His face was bloodless and being a Pom he already had a predominantly whitish hue.

Carrot – “WHAT WAS THAT?”

Me – “It’s ok. It’s a Huntsman. Big, but harmless.”

Carrot – “Harmless? Then why’s it called A HUNTS-MAN? I don’t mean to be rude but what sort of country is this? I’m still at the f#cken AIRPORT!”

About six hours later, he had calmed down and was drinking a good Aussie VB and wandering around our Hornswood backyard. All of a sudden he was waving and signaling for me to come down and check out something distressing about our gum tree.


I hurried down to the backyard. Carrot was hesitantly standing guard at the tree.


Carrot (quite agitated) – “Over here mate. C’mon. Please.”

I was hoping, after he was airport-carpark-Huntsman’d, that he hadn’t stumbled upon anything worse. Our house backs onto thick Hornswood bush and a creek, so spiders, leaches and ticks, even the odd snake, are pretty commonplace. He was staring intently at the gum tree when I arrived.

He was very agitated, beckoned me over and silently pointed at the threat. I was on my guard but I came in close.

Now keep in mind poor Carrot had only been in the country a few hours, and there, you wouldn’t believe it, hanging on the side of the big gum tree that I’ve been past a thousand times, was a fairly large, brown… cicada shell.

Carrot – “LOOK OUT! What is it?” He was standing safely behind me.

I couldn’t help but laugh, loudly.

Me – “Carrot, you can relax. It’s just a cicada shell.”


Me – “It’s a harmless insect.”

Carrot – “Insect? IT’S NEAR AS BIG AS ME F#CKEN HAND.”

Me – “Yeah, it outgrew that shell is all.”

Carrot – “You’re joking? NOW IT’S BIGGER?”

Me – “They’re nice though. Very Aussie. You can hear them beating their wings all-”


Anyway, we were sitting on the veranda later and after three or four more VB’s I managed to calm Carrot down. He was actually starting to relax and see the funny side of his introduction to Aussie nature. But then a Christmas beetle kamikazed into his hair. I didn’t warn him not to sit under the light.

He jumped up but, with a seemingly newfound degree of mature resignation, he just dropped his head and laughed. He laughed and he laughed. We all did. Through the laughter Carrot did say “I don’t think I can do this”. But he laughed again.

I told him that’s exactly what he needed to do. Go with the flow. Don’t try to stand up against Mother Nature in Australia. She’s just too powerful here. You can keep her under control in Europe, but here you must learn to get along with Mother Nature and don’t be bothered by her presence. I said to him, just like you were a puny, white-skinned little Pommy boy who’s having his life made miserable by the soccer-loving school-yard bully back home, just try to co-exist!

In a moment of absolute epiphany, it dawned on him that mine was actually sage-like advice. I could see, right before my eyes, him take on a new perspective. Just at that moment, he’d completely altered the way he was going to approach his new life in this country. He’d got it wrong! He’d have to become positive about our closeness to nature. He had to embrace it, not hate it!

His bright new perspective lasted right up to the point that he sat down on the veranda to put on his shoes and a bull-ant bit him… on the scrotum.

It was a tough first day in Oz.

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.




I’m sure he wont have any problems with me putting it out there into the public domain, but when we were in primary school, my little brother Linc had behavioral issues. They were convinced he was hyperactive, so being the 70s he received more than his share of Phenergan. But looking back now, maybe it wasn’t completely his fault.

I am three years older. I don’t remember ever bashing or physically bullying him, however I pranked and took the piss out him, mercilessly.

One Wednesday during the school holidays our grandparents took us, along with my sister and mum, to the David Jones Dining Room in the city. We were born and raised at Bilgola and back then, DJ’s was about the flashest place we ever went. We knew we had to be on our absolute best behavior. We had to have showers, comb our hair, wear collared shirts and no sandals! I even had to wear my special Rockie Racoon dress sloppy-joe.


So we were sitting there, all dressed up, us kids bored out of our minds in the restaurant. Mum kept giving us “don’t you dare embarrass me” looks from the other end of the table with the adults, so we just sat.

I thought of something to do to keep us entertained. I unscrewed the cap from the pepper shaker and poured all the pepper and the mysterious bits of rice into my hand.

Me (ten years old, to my seven year old brother) – “Look Linc!”

When my brother, who was sitting next to me turned around, I blew the entire contents of the pepper shaker into his face.

He screamed and started gouging at his eyes. He sneezed, yelled, coughed, tried to breathe, his eyes and nose ran. He squirmed around in his chair.

Mum spun to us. I gave her a shrug, as if to say I don’t know what the hell he’s doing now.

She did one of those yells at him, which are not big on volume, but big on fear factor.


My brother managed to do a heavy-breathing, stagger to the bathroom.

I gave mum a thumbs up, to signify that my sister and I would keep him under control. It’d all be ok.

After a long time Linc made his way back to our table. He was wobbling a little, he kept rubbing his eyes that were as red as the number 3 pool ball, he was breathing with a wheeze and when he sneezed a small cloud of pepper flew up from his hair. However, he was fine and the old “condiment in the face” gag had certainly broken the monotony.

Mum continued to give him the old stink eye from the other end of the table.

When Linc sat down, he looked around for his glass of Coke. He knew he’d finished it, but was desperate for there to be that one final skerrick left in the bottom. Anything to ease some of the pepper burn. His mood lifted dramatically when he spotted his glass on the other side of the table, noticed the bottom ¾ of his bright green straw, was Coke-dark. He still had a sip left!

I handed him his glass without any shenanigans. I knew he needed it. I couldn’t help but feel partially responsible for his pepperisation.

My brother then sucked in ¾ of a green straw full of Worcestershire Sauce!

Apparently, his drink had been interfered with, when he was in the bathroom.

He collapsed to the DJ’s Dining Room fancy carpeted floor, gasping for air, retching and thrashing around. Making quite the scene.

I hooked a thumb in his direction and gave Mum a look that said, this guy! What are we going to do? It’s getting harder and harder to control him. Phenergan time?

Linc continued to writhe around on the floor and looked like he was possibly about to die.


Later that night, Linc (who still cannot eat oysters Kilpatrick to this day) was still wheezing and his eyes were still red, so I thought I’d make it up to him.

Me – “You’re always complaining you can’t beat me at anything because I’m older, well let’s have a comp to see who can last the entire night in the shoe cupboard.”

Linc – “That’s stupid!”

Me – “Well, the shoe cupboard’s tiny. You’d have a big chance of winning.”

My brother was interested. So we spent the next half hour working out the rules.

(1) You obviously cannot remove the shoes. So we had to sleep in a tiny, cramped box, wedged on top of Dunlop Volleys, brown school shoes, Ugh boots, thongs, gum boots, sandals and dress Desert Boots.

(2) You can’t leave the cupboard except to go to the dunny.

(3) The cupboard door had to be closed the whole time.

(4) We tossed a coin, my brother won and took the first go.

During the night I knew he hadn’t shoe-cupboard-suffocated because every hour or so, I’d hear a relieving Worcestershire Sauce and pepper cough. He did indeed last the whole night with the door closed, except when I had to open it once to throw in a sandal, which I found under our double bunks.

When he slowly extricated himself from the shoe cupboard the next morning, it looked like one of those bizarre contortionists we used to see on “That’s Incredible”. First one leg popped out, then an arm flopped out.

He looked like a skinny Quasimodo, but he was so excited that he’d made it through the entire night.


Me – “It’s ok,” I said with to him with a pat on the back. “I don’t have to spend the night in the cupboard.”

Linc – “Why not?” He looked concerned.

Me – “You win.”

I walked off.

Linc – “What?”

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


My brother Linc shares my addiction to KFC, but not my KFC retention problem. Twenty or so years ago, he was living in Wimbledon with our sister “Doc”, directly opposite KFC! The dream location.

Linc hadn’t been in the dirty bird for days, so he was hanging for his 2-Piece Feed.

Linc (starving) – “Hi, could I please have a 2-Piece Feed and swap the drink and the roll, for a piece of corn?”

KFC worker Lenny – “I’m very sorry, no.”

Linc – “But you’re 70p better off.”

Lenny – “Swap the drink and roll for a buttery-golden-corn?”

Linc – “You got it.”

Lenny – I’m very sorry, no.”


Linc – “I feel we’re getting nowhere here Lenny. Could you ask your manager?”

Lenny – “I know what she’ll say.”

Linc – “What?”

Lenny – “I’m very sorry, no.”

Linc tried a new approach. He hunkered in closely to speak, man-to-man.

Linc – “Leeenny, we’re reasonable men. You’re just doing your job, and doing it damn well by the way. Can you make this happen for me? Nobody needs to know but us Lenny, if you know what I mean.”

Lenny – I’m very sorry, no.”

Linc (now feeling just a tad angry) – “I’m feeling just a tad angry here Lenny. You’re potentially ruining my finger-licking-good experience.”

Lenny – “What if everybody wanted to do it?”

Linc – “What if word of your customer-pleasing attitude gets out, there is a ground-swell and you’re suddenly awash with customers trying to get some of the buttery-golden-corn swap action that results in you making an extra 70p each time?”

Lenny – “Yeah. What if everybody wanted it?”

Linc – “Here’s an idea, (my brother beckoned for Lenny to lean closer and cupped his hands around his mouth). ORDER MORE FREAKIN’ CORN!!”

As a result the Shift-Manager came around the counter.

Shift-Manager – “What’s going on?”

Now I am not passing judgement in any way (being 112.4kg I am in no position to), however the Shift-Manager was… obese.

Linc – “The discussion seems a bit out of the jurisdiction of Lenny here. With just a tiny bit of flexibility, you have the opportunity to make an extra 70p profit for the owner of this fine establishment and keep one of your most regular customers, extremely happy. A win/win if I ever heard it.”

Shift-Manager – “No.”

My brother thought he should use her name. He dropped his gaze to the name tag, pinned near her highly-stressed buttons.


Now this next part sounds made up, but I kid you not, this is how it happened.

Linc, flustered, accidentally got tongue-tied on the name.

Linc – “Listen here, Fat… Fatima.”

Oh no, he thought, did I just stutter and call this obese Shift-Manager, FAT Fatima? Maybe she missed it.

By the time he raised his eyes, she was fuming. Fit to burst!

Shift-Manager Fatima (she pointed right into Linc’s face) – “Lifetime ban!”

Linc – “Oh God no! I’ve got a two-year lease.”

Shift-Manager Fatima (yelling out) – “STAFF, IF THIS MAN EVER SETS FOOT IN HERE AGAIN, RING THE POLICE.” She waddled back to the office.

My brother left, distraught.

He sat at home for two days, going cold turkey (excuse the pun) and feeling like his world had come to an end. Living in a unit which looked directly at KFC, and not being able to walk in for a fix, is a situation akin to torture for either my brother or myself.

That was until he thought of… sending Doc!

This went on for about three weeks. Doc would buy the stuff he needed and sneak it back to their unit (via the back door so Shift-Manager Fatima would not see).


One day Doc’s in the KFC queue. She feels a chubby little Shift-Manager Fatima finger, poke her on the shoulder.

Doc froze.

Shift-Manager Fatima – “You’re in here a lot, with your Australian accent ordering, buttery-golden-corn with your 2-Piece Feed.”

My sister was totally freaked out, but stood mute.

Shift-Manager Fatima – “Reminds me of another Australian, who received a… lifetime… ban! You wouldn’t know anything about that would you??”



Doc – “OF COURSE I KNOW!” My sister in reality had no idea what happens if you buy KFC for a lifer.

Shift-Manager Fatima – “I’m watching you.”

So Doc sheepishly bought KFC for Linc, herself and their friend James who was due to arrive at their place any minute and snuck her way back into their unit.

Later, their doorbell rang and Doc got up to let James in. When she let out a squeal, Linc, buttery-golden-corn in hand, rushed to the door.

He saw my sister, ashen. In front of her stood Shift-Manager Fatima, puffing from having crossed the road.

Shift-Manager Fatima – “LIFETIME BAN MISSY!”

So there are now TWO lifers from Wimbledon KFC. Both my siblings.

True story.

And by the way, it’s not the first time my brother’s done something stupied, check it out (

Check out my new writing business, which allows me to claim at parties that I am in fact, a professional writer ( It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Cheers.


Because of a few incidents at my son’s school over the years, my eleven-year-old daughter made me promise not to do anything that would embarrass her. We were on our way to the HLC (Hornswood Ladies College) welcome-to-the-school, so us parents could get debriefed and shown around, while the girls sat exams to decide their classes for next year.

So my daughter went off with the rest of the kids and I desperately needed a coffee, as I was a tad hungover. We had half an hour before the Head Mistress kicked things off, so with my wife and a mate of mine who we’ll call “Sam” (because like the cowardly Sam Tarly in Game of Thrones, he has chosen not to be identified), we left the big group of new parents and headed to the cafeteria.

On the way back we peered in to the new pool-centre, but being not yet opened “Pool Closed” and “No food or drink” signs were numerous (but I always assume they are more of a guideline than a rule) and all the doors were locked. Except one.

Sam and I snuck in for a look, my wife (who has never broken a rule in her life) refused and went back to all the other parents.

After checking the place out, I had made my way to the doorways at the other end of the pool. Of course they were locked. I was going to have to walk all the way back to the door through which we had entered. Or…

Sam noticed me standing in front of the one door marked –


Sam – “DON’T DO IT.”

He had to raise his voice for me to hear, because he was still at half-way, feeling the pool temperature.


I opened the door.


The loudest, sharpest, most earsplitting siren you’ve ever heard. I freaked out.

Me – “SAM!! HELP!!”


I can see Sam yelling and gesticulating wildly. I couldn’t make out what he’s saying.



Sam is yelling and running over to me. I was confident he’d have a solution.



I let the door go. The alarm immediately stopped.

Now, it’s not like we’re kids anymore. But we did what we had to do. We legged-it!

Sam is a svelte, fleet-of-foot, 78kg, marathon runner. He took off smoothly and gracefully with the speed of a startled gazelle. His coffee barely even moved in its cup and in just a few short moments, he’s back at the other door waiting for me.

I on the other hand am not designed for sprinting. I am a 112.3kg, hung over, blogging, man of girth.

I legged-it into a slow jog, but my coffee started to splash around everywhere, so I fast-walked it the rest of the way.

Half an hour later, I was sitting next to Sam in the big hall, with our wives and about 200 parents. The Head Mistress was in the middle of a wonderful, welcoming and informative speech about what we as new parents could expect next year. She was, as were all the staff I met to be honest, impressive.

Sam (whispering) – “I still can’t believe you opened that door.”

Me (also whispering) – “Mate of course it’s obvious now, but I was in the hot seat and had to make the call one way or the other.”

Sam shook his head.

Me – “But its ok. Yes, all the other parents saw us running out after the alarm, but… they… don’t… know… our… names. We are anonymous! Phantoms! The ghosts who walk. They’ll forget our faces by the time our kids school starts.”

I had my phone on silent, my wife had reminded me a number of times. As the Head Mistress talked I suddenly remembered I had to check out Scotland’s price in the Rugby League Four Nations, so I picked my phone up and whispered in it.

Here’s a fun fact. On an iPhone, even though it’s on silent, Siri still answers… AT FULL VOLUME.

The Head Mistress had paused her speech for a second to draw breath. The entire hall was dead silent. You could hear a pin drop. But you didn’t hear a pin drop, you heard my Siri –


Every head shot around to look at me. To look at JASON, who’s opening his T.A.B APP during the Head Mistress’ speech. I slowly lowered my phone from my mouth guiltily.


Sam and his wife Di, burst out laughing. As did the hundred or so people sitting around me. They laughed loud. They laughed long. Now they knew my name!

I heard my wife say, oh my God.

After all the induction was done, my wife and I were chatting to one of the teachers. She was telling us how they empower all the girls to make decisions themselves and of course how important rules are. I was nodding.

Teacher – “Yep, rules around here are pretty important.”

Was she on to us? If she knew, then I’d have to cop to it and say I was embarrassed and I must have missed the pool closed and door alarmed signs… and that Sam was there too! But I didn’t want to confess, if we’d gotten away with it.

Teacher (looking directly at me) – “Yep… rules! Anyway, I’d best go meet a few other parents. Have a good day… Nice pool isn’t it?”


My daughter was not happy. My wife told her at the earliest opportunity, that within the first hour, her father had been pegged as a sign-ignoring, siren-fleeing, exam-interrupting, Head-Mistress-unheeding, punting, responsibility-denier.

My daughter – “You can’t go back to the school again dad, for six years!”

Thanks for reading. I write short blog posts, oftentimes simply to claim at parties much to my wife’s chagrin, that I am in fact… a writer. If you could Share far and wide via the buttons below, that would be amazing. I need to one day be a famous contributor to the noble art, of blogging. Cheers



One of the great movie lines, by none other than the amazing Russell Crowe. It’s memorable, it’s powerful, but when you’ve been drinking with the boys all day and you deliver it to Rusty himself… not so much.

I was with five mates on Geoff’s old, mid-sized yacht, anchored at Woolloomooloo. We were staying the night on the boat, so the six of us had been drinking irresponsibly all day.

My buddy Tony and I are MASSIVE Rusty fans. We’ve watched Gladiator many times, quoted it often and regularly dreamed of being the Gladiator. You can imagine our excitement upon learning on social media that Rusty himself had been sighted partying on an enormous cruiser, just off Woolloomooloo Bay Hotel, 200m away!

We could see his cruiser! Rusty!

Geoff – “Cool Hand (my self-ascribed poker call-sign) we’ve been drinking heavily since midday, it’s now 11:00pm. We’re all maggotted! It would be insane for me to drive anywhere, especially through that throng of mega-boats. It’s pitch black!”

Me – “But it’s Rusty! You know how many Gladiator quotes Tony and I know. He’ll love us. What’s the worst that could happen?”

Geoff – “Ok I’m in!”

There we were, motoring slowly through all the multi-million dollar boats, with a legless captain, drunk crew, on our way to pull up next to the Gladiator. Ooh yeah!

We weren’t crazy. We positioned two blokes at the front, to signal if there was anything coming up Geoff had to avoid. I stood on the side of the yacht and waited until we were close enough to possibly spot Rusty.

I was getting nervous. I could actually see my idol standing with a group of beautiful people at the back of the enormous cruiser (our yacht was not huge, so we lacked a bit of nautical cred).

As we neared, Tone and I had already planned which line I would throw first.


I could see Rusty clearly, when our two spotters started to get a little agitated.

Mike (at the front of our boat) – “GEOFF, THERE’S A MOORED DINGHY STRAIGHT AHEAD. VEER TO PORT.”

Geoff, driving from the back of the yacht, did not react.

Col – “GEOFF! YOU’RE GOING TO HIT A DINGHY IF YOU DON’T GO TO PORT SIDE!!” They were waving their hands around frantically. Geoff plowed on ahead, unmoved.

Being in the middle of the boat, I could hear Captain Geoff was saying something. Inebriated as I was, I knew this was probably spotter-essential information.


I WOULD WALK FIVE HUNDRED MILES AND I... Oh no, he was singing.

We were so close to Rusty now, he was staring straight at us.

Me (dropping my voice a couple of octaves) – “MY NAME IS MAXIMUS DE-”


We went straight over the dinghy and the mooring and our yacht slammed to a sudden, noisy halt. With a yell, my bourbon and I went flying. I landed on my side with a thud, nearly went overboard and was only saved by that annoying knee-high wire that runs around the boat.

We all picked ourselves up. I gave Rusty a thumbs-up to signify I was ok and we all made our way to the back of the boat.


Geoff – “Sorry (with a chuckle), too drunk to react.”

We realised Rusty was still standing there watching us.


I gave Tony a nicely-selected-and-presented-quote, nod.

Geoff picked up the closest knife from the table and dived overboard.

Keep in mind, it was the middle of the night, the current was strong, we were in Sydney Harbour and he’s as full as a Hornswood train. I assumed Geoff was going to be taken by some sea-predator (who would have thought himself pretty lucky with a beer-infused late-night meal), drown or be run over by Rusty’s cruiser which had its engine running.

Tony – “MY NAME IS GLADIATOR.” Rusty was still standing there watching us. He did not react.

Me – “Tone, you have to drop a couple of octaves.”

Matt – “Geoff took the cheese knife.”

I hurriedly leaned over the side.

Me – “WHAT WE DO IN LIFE, ECHOES AN ETERNITY.” I put a concerted effort into that line, it was one of the biggies. Despite my drinking, I was pretty sure I sounded Gladiatorial.

After a while we started to get a little concerned for Geoff. The water was black as pitch and we could not see him.

Tony – “AT MY SIGNAL, UNLEASH HELL!” Still no reaction from Rusty, but he kept on looking at us.

Me – “Nice tone… Tone.” Tony and I high-fived.

With a loud TWANG sound and a jerking motion, we knew Geoff had cut us free. It was a relief for about thirty seconds, until we realised we were drifting rapidly towards Rusty’s cruiser. Geoff was still somewhere in the water. We started to panic a little. We didn’t know how to drop the motorized anchor chain, nor start the engine.

Tony – “WHATEVER COMES OUT OF THESE GATES, WE’VE GOT A BETTER CHANCE OF SURVIVAL IF WE WORK TOGETHER.” Due to our panic, he didn’t deliver that line with anywhere near the passion it deserved.

Suddenly Geoff materialized, sopping wet with our cheese knife between his teeth. We cheered, he started the engine and slammed the boat into reverse. We eventually came to a halt, about three metres from making the front page of the Daily Telegraph.

I knew I only had one final chance to impress Rusty, in hope of him leaning over the side and saying, hey lads, you’re pretty passionate with those quotes. Why don’t I join you?

Me – “STRENGTH AND HONOUR.” I put my fist over my heart.

Rusty leaned over the side. We all rushed to hear him.

Rusty – “You guys are f#cking idiots.” He walked off. His voice sounded different.

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


In the 80s, us blokes of the North Shore, were definitely homophobic. We had great hair and fantastic shoes, but we were homophobic.

Things changed a little in the 90s, undoubtedly due to cool, gay characters on Roseanne and Melrose Place and we became more “homo-averse”, than homophobic.

In the new millennium, with Arrested Development and 30 Rock, we watered down our long-held prejudices to just “homo-skittish”.

However, House Husbands and Modern Family, allowed further improvement, so we are currently sitting at only “homo-concerned”. An advancement.

I’m thinking, we can do even better Hornswood lads. We can make it to… “homo-indifferent

Here’s my random thoughts:

  • We must start to deride the Hornswoodian homophobe, to make lives vastly more comfortable for gay kids into the future.
  • For those who don’t know me, I’m not gay, my son’s certainly not, but one of my oldest and closest mates is. The gay community, may be mortified to have a straight guy who writes as politically-incorrectly as I do, speaking like a crusader for gay rights.
  • Being a “crusader” sounds pretty cool, I picture noble Sir Jase, in chain mail, on a war-horse, brigand-smoting with broadsword and shield, on my way to the local tavern for a tankard of ale with my favourite wench.
  • I work in the Eastern suburbs and over there, there’s no shortage of gay blokes, being couples… and… NOBODY… CARES. Hornswood is a wonderful place to live, but it’s an indictment on us, that there are basically no outwardly gay men strolling around Hornswood Westfield! Gay Hornswood sons, live a lie, or they move away.

Me (playing pool at Hornswood RSL with a few mates) – “That’s the worst freaken shot I have ever seen at a pool table Fracas. You could choke on sherbet!”

Fracas (aka Mike) – “I saw your fag mate the other day. He’s a good bloke.”

Me – “Whoa, whoa, whoa Fracas! I’m trying to diminish the level of homophobia in Hornswood. “Fag” or “faggot” are literally the most offensively demeaning things you can call a gay bloke? It’s like using the N word to an African-American.”

Fracas – “Huh? Faggot, gay, poof, queer. Same thing.”

Me – Faggot is hurtful. If you insist on describing him by his sexuality, which is weird in itself, but if you must, call him gay.”

  • Most Hornswood blokes, don’t have any really close mates that are (outwardly) gay, because they just don’t live in the area. Some may have a next door neighbour’s cousin that’s gay, or know a guy from work, but I’m talking about Hornswoodians being mates with a gay guy. It’s rare and it’s half the problem. Exposure, promotes tolerance.

Fracas – “Half these blokes only go gay ‘cause it’s trendy.”

Me – “Seriously? They voluntarily choose to be part of a harassed minority? They side-jump because it’s stylish? I don’t know how little your sexuality means to you Fracas, but I really don’t think I could find some bloke’s schlong attractive, even if it meant being invited to a few more parties on the weekend… THEY’RE BORN GAY! Maybe you should focus a little more on your shot and a little less on your fanciful gay-lifestyle theories.”

  • Too often when there’s media coverage of issues like gay marriage or adoption, they flash to footage of shaved, gay men, dancing up on a Mardi Gras float, wearing arse-less chaps and a “wake up the gimp” mask. This unfair stereotype is seared into our brain.
  • For f#cks sake, let them get married. What is this 1950?
  • I’m generalising of course, but gay blokes are more promiscuous and take part in wilder things, than us. OF COURSE THEY DO. THEY’RE… BLOKES… I would guess in 95% of hetero relationships, it’s the woman who is the hand-brake when things get too kinky in the bedroom. Whether you’re into just plain old missionary, or it’s “lion-on-the-cheese-grater” position for you, it’s rarely the bloke going to say “no, let’s not do that” or “let’s not put that in there” or “that’s just too weird.

Fracas – “It’s just not natural.”

Me – “You kidding? If you’re born a certain way (with an open hand intimating him), tall, dark-haired, thin lips, that’s nature right? Nature, which you’re apparently such a fan of, has… made… them… gay. Anyway, if it was all left up to what’s natural, we wouldn’t be here with ineptitude-illustrating pool tables, Fox Sports and chicken schnitty.

Me – “So of course Fracas, if you were a single man and you picked up a thin-lip-seeking hot lady, as unlikely as that seems, you’d have to let her know ahead of time your absolute aversion to anything… unnatural.”

Fracas – “I got thin lips?”

  • We Hornswood men, just like moonshine-distilling, varmint-eating, cousin-marryin’, hillbillies, will not be told how to think or feel, by outsiders. So any politically-correct, Green-voting, man-bun-wearing, vegan, gay rights activist from Surry Hills, would have no chance getting Hornswood blokes to progress to homo-indifferent. We only change from within.
  • “Brokeback Mountain” was a wonderful movie, but “that scene”, you know, the one in the tent, was just too graphic and made too many straight blokes uncomfortable. It dramatically slowed Hornswood’s progression by galvanizing the Homophobes and giving them a focal point to take the piss out of (no doubt, the opposite of the true intentions of the movie makers).

Fracas – “I hate poofs.”

Me – “You hate gays Fracas? You’re a family man! Isn’t life too short? Isn’t there enough violence and pain in the world, without keeping room in your heart for hating Hornswoodians that in no way interfere with you or your family! Why bother?”

Fracas – “I just don’t like th-”

Me – “NOBODY IS ASKING YOU TO LIKE ANYTHING FRACAS, just don’t hate! And don’t teach your kids to hate. Hate a guy if he doesn’t shout (I waved my empty beer glass in front of his face), if he supports the Brisbane Broncos or has wafer thin lips. But not if he’s gay.”

  • Hornswood dads will do anything for their kids. Burdening them with our outdated bigotries (via poofter jokes and fag comments), will place our kids behind the eight-ball, when they head into the politically-correct workplaces of the future.

Me – “Fracas, what if your best mate from Hornswood Rugby Club came out? Like my mate did.”

Fracas – “Well we wouldn’t be showering together after the game anymore and I’d be gettin’ a new mate.”

Me – “There’s just no way he could possibly resist coming on to you? Thin lips and all? If you dropped your guard for a minute, he’d be there trying to make you gay? You’d seriously forsake your mate? Jeez, remind me never to be stuck in a Gallipoli trench with you Fracas.”

  • It’s a small point I know, but the term “coming out of the closet” is too theatrical and sounds too camp, for a lot of Hornswood dads and sons to consider. If we called it “bloking-up” or “fighting-out” or something, then more blokes may do it, or not judge too harshly blokes who do.

Fracas – “I wouldn’t want one teaching my son.”

Me – “But you’re happy to have a straight guy teach your daughter? Believe me Fracas, any poor gay bloke who did end up teaching your son, probably wouldn’t be all that happy having one of his student’s dads being a bigoted, sherbet-choking, Broncos-jersey-wearing, thin-lipper! And mate when you say one, it makes them sound like a species.”

  • Hornswoodians, imagine having all those terrible gay slurs, angry comments and piss-taking remarks, being aimed at one of your kids.
  • I’ve heard Hornswood women, when some bloke is loudly and consistently making anti-gay statements, imply that he may actually be gay himself. A “methinks he doth protests too much”, sort of thing. But I don’t think that’s the case. Most those blokes aren’t trying to cover up their own gayness. They are actually anti-gay. That’s the problem!
  • Apparently about 5% of the population is gay. I would suggest that maybe 0.5% of Hornswood is openly gay. That means there are hundreds of blokes depressingly living a lie and never truly relaxing with the people closest to them. Hornswood kids should be worried about pimples, how their footy team is going and exams, not hiding a thing that goes to the absolute core of who they are… their sexuality.
  • I cannot comprehend how the hell a person hides being gay. I’d have no chance. The first time I got really pissed at the pub with the lads, I’d end up yelling out “JEEZ YOU LOOK GOOD IN THOSE JEANS BOY”. I couldn’t get away with it.
Jeans. Jeans.

Let’s go for homo-indifferent and make life a hell of a lot less depressing for young guys in Hornswood. We can’t change the world, but we can change Hornswood.

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


We were with five other couples at “La Hornswood” Italian restaurant, for my wonderful wife’s thirtieth (many years ago). Billy Joel mentions – bottle of red, bottle of white, but our issue was that the night developed into – bottle of bourbon, bottle of scotch

I was sitting between Psycho Dave and Doubles my biggest drinking mates back in the day. We were… smashed.

My lovely wife was understandably… angry.

It came up in conversation that I could only do twenty push-ups and Doubles was up me! Big time.

Doubles – “TWENTY PUSH-UPS SWEETHEART? THAT’S CUTE COOL HAND” (my self-ascribed, poker call-sign).

Me – “You’re not exactly at your fighting-weight Doubles. How many could you do?

He thinks to himself, stands, stumbles and announces to everybody in La Hornswood – “I CAN DO FIFTY! AND I’M WILLING TO BET.

Me (turning my head with a dismissive wave) – “You can’t do fifty.


Me – “I know your sister!


My wife looking angry as hell that we were making such a scene, mouthed “DON’T” to me. But Doubles was wearing me down.


I tried to ignore him, but he was yelling to the whole restaurant.

File 19-2-21, 5 35 05 pm


Me (interjecting) – “ALL RIGHT!! What’s the bet?

My wife and I for the previous ten weeks had been taking part in a weight-loss competition with Doubles and his wife Mary. The losing couple had to spend $500 on the winning couple in the Hunter Valley on a weekend for us all (it was a while ago). We lost, so we owed them the weekend.


Me – “Done.”

I immediately had my shoulder whacked by the birthday girl, with Spanish fury in her Barcelona eyes.

My wife – “This’s not one of your drunken boy’s nights. Don’t you DARE bet him. That money’s for us all to have a lovely weekend.”

Doubles swayed and made a really authentic whip-cracking sound, complete with the whipping action. My cheeks burned.


Whip.Doubles (looking at me with mock sympathy) – “IT’S NOT YOUR FAULT you’re whipped. There’s nothing wrong with being scared of your wife…

Me – “Doubles why don’t y-

Doubles (interjecting) – “IT’S NOT YOUR FAULT.”

      Me – “Just tr-

Doubles (interjecting again) – “IT’S NOT YOUR FAULT.”

      Me – “Why’d-”

Doubles (and again)– “IT’S NOT YOUR FAULT.”

Me – “TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTY THEN.” That would hopefully not result in divorce


Doubles – “OK.” So Doubles was back to five hundred.

Alessandro, the young Italian waiter nominated himself as our umpire. We offered Doubles one last chance to pull out.


We had to move five tables for push-up space. The patrons didn’t mind as they had all gotten right in the spirit of the competition.

Psycho Dave and I high-fived, when Doubles stumbled and only stopped himself from falling by shoving a hand into the plate of Tiramisu (which we replaced) being eaten by a big dude on the next table.

File 25-11-21, 2 33 48 pm

Anyway, I became extremely nervous when Doubles speedily got up to about 25 push-ups. The entire restaurant, the staff and the chef were counting them out-loud as he went.

But when he got to 30 he really started to struggle. His arms shook, he sweated out pure bourbon and scotch. Like the building of an ancient Pyramid, his butt was slowly but surely, getting higher and higher.

Come 36 push-ups Alessandro, with a theatrical double-sweep of the hands reminiscent of the referee in Rocky II counting out Apollo Creed, disqualified Doubles.

Psycho Dave and I leapt into the air. Not only did we win the bets but we let a mate humiliate himself in public! The whole place erupted with cheers. Doubles had not won over the La Hornswood patrons.

Mary and my wife both turned and left.

The next day I rang Doubles, who woke up freezing on the lawn, to check he wasn’t divorced or dead.

Doubles (husky-voiced) – “Yeah, that competition was somewhat disappointing. You know when you’re really pissed and you sort of black out for a while. That was last night. When I came to, I was in the middle of the restaurant, people were cheering and me doing push-ups. I had no idea why I was doing them, all I knew was that I had to do as many as possible.”

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


NRL (aka League) and Rugby Union, have very different fan bases, at least they do amongst my friends.

I have great mates who live in the Western suburbs of Sydney and they absolutely love their NRL. A few years ago I watched the NRL Grand Final with them, in Campbelltown (a long way from Hornswood). I also have great mates who live in Hornswood and they absolutely adore their Rugby Union. I watched the Bledisloe Cup with them, in Roseville (Rugby Union heartland).



Me to my NRL mate, Grand Final night – “Howdy Crotch-Rot, where do I shove my Coronas?

NRL mate – “You don’t want me to answer that, because the answer involves your arse! Coronas? Oooh la-di-da… very fancy! Chuck ‘em in the f#cking esky! Just near the bottle of Bundy that the fat prick brought.

Me – “I tried, but the esky’s full of VB and Reschs!


Me to my Rugby Union mate, Bledisloe night – “Hello James, where do I place my Coronas?

Rugby Union mate – “Coronas?? Cheap cat’s excrement! Put them in the glass-faced fridge. Just near the bottle of Pinot Gris Andrew brought.

Me – “I tried, but the fridge’s full of Asahi and Grolsch!



Me to my NRL mate – “Hey Scumbag, nice aqua coloured flannel. Too good for you. Where’d you get it?

NRL mate – “F#ck knows. The missus bought it. Lowes in Macarthur Square I think. It’s not aqua!

Me – “Does your sister know you’re wearing her shirt? Nice handlebar moustache too… not as good as your sister’s.


Me to my Rugby Union mate – “Hey Andrew, nice pink shirt. Where’d you get it?

Rugby Union mate – “Thanks you Jase. Egyptian cotton mixed with Belgian linen. I got it from my London tailor. It’s not pink though, it’s fuchsia.

Me – “Huh, it looks local.



Me to my NRL mate – “Jeez that barbie smells great dick head. What are you burning the crap out of for us?

NRL mate – “Shit head, we got T-bones and we got snags!

Me – “I’m so hungry I could eat Kym Beazley stuffed with bacon.

Me to my Rugby Union mate – “Gee whiz that barbecue smells great Walter. What are we having?

Rugby Union mate – “Jase we have Wagyu scotch fillet and we have pheasant-camembert-pistachio sausages.

Me – “I’m so hungry I could eat Joe Hockey stuffed with quinoa.



Me to my NRL mate – “I got a Bradman on this game Dirty Phil, you got any bets on?

NRL mate – “Yeah. I won fiddy on the pokies, so I put it on the Doggies at minus five and half.

Me – “Good bet.


Me to my Rugby Union mate – “I have a hundred dollars wagered on this game Cameron, have you got any on?

Rugby Union mate – “No way! You’re a compulsive gambler Jase. I can’t believe how much you bet on a football match

Me – “Huh? You just put $30,000 into Billabong options based on one article you read in the Financial Review!



Me to my NRL mate – “You going away for the holidays Swineherder?

NRL mate – “Ooh shit yeah. Taking the caravan to the Central Coast. Fishing, surfing, snorkeling, sunbaking, kayaking, beers and barbies.

Me – “You could have just said going to the Central Coast, wanker.”


Me to my Rugby Union mate – “You going away for the holidays Robert?

Rugby Union mate – “Ooh yeah. Going heli-skiing in Normandy.

Me – “You could have just said going to France or skiing, tosser.



Me to my NRL mate – “What do you think of Rugby Union, root-master? I’ll be watching the Bledisloe with a whole bunch of Roseville mates.

NRL mate – “I F#CKING HATE THAT GAME. Too many stoppages, feigning of injuries, the number of fat-boy players, the ref’s interpretations can screw the game and it’s just sooooo bloody complicated. It’s designed for your silver-spoon, SBS-watching, BMW-driving, private-school, trust fund, lobster-nibbling, tax-evading, suit-wearing, white-collar snob mates.

Me – “It’s the thinking man’s game root-master, and you’re obviously just not a thinker.


Me to my Rugby Union mate – “What do you think of NRL, Xavier? I’ll be watching the Grand Final with a whole bunch of Campbelltown mates.

Rugby Union mate – “I REALLY HATE THAT GAME. It’s so predictable, bash it up the centre five times and then kick. Their scrums are a joke and the players all take turns being arrested! It’s played by thugs and morons, for the viewing pleasure of your wage-earning, Pauline Hanson-voting, tree-removing, TAB-visiting, KFC-eating, Home And Away-watching, Commodore driving mates.

Me – “You are such a freaken snob, the simplicity is what’s so great about it.


I don’t know if my mates represent the wider community or not, but just like Judas Iscariot, Sonny Bill Williams and Benedict Arnold, I am happy having a foot in both warring camps.


It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


Through no fault of either party, couples are occasionally thrust into situations, in which one of them really questions, the fundamental value of the relationship.

Back in 1989, my beautiful wife Isabel (who was my girlfriend of only two months at the time) and I, flew to Melbourne to attend her close friend’s enormous, Ukrainian wedding. I had never met anybody there before, not even the bride.

My lovely wife, in 1989. My lovely wife, 1989

Isabel was up the front on the bridal table. I was right down the back, with seven of the most enormous, neckless, pumped-up body builders I had ever seen. Huge Ukrainian lads, who hardly spoke a word of English. Very non-Hornswood.

Four jugs of beer were brought to our table.

Bodybuilder Boyko (in a thick Ukrainian accent, to the waitress) – “No beer us please.”

Me – “Whoa, whoa, whoa Boyko! What?? No beer boys? It’s a freaken wedding.”

Boyko – “No beer us. We train. Competition in week.”

Me – “Oh for f#cks sake lads. It’ll be embarrassing to send back jugs.” I thought for a moment.

Me (to the waitress) – “Just leave the jugs. We’ll be right.”

So after two hours and four jugs, I’m hammered, having an absolute ball with the Ukrainian bodybuilders, despite our speaking different languages. They didn’t touch a drop. They all had two meals each, but they didn’t touch a drop.

Because their names were too difficult, I gave them all nicknames. Andriy became “Schwarzenegger”, Boyko was “Mal Meninga”, Petruso I called “Jessy ‘The Body’ Ventura”, Fedir became “Van Damme”, Olek was “Andre The Giant”, Borysko was “Hulk Hogan” and the other Andriy I tagged “Paul Sironen”.

The Ukrainians called me “party man”, but with their accents it sounded more like “potty man”.

They had the Melbourne Female Entertainer of the Year 1980, as the singer with her backup band. She was a bit dull and kept singing originals, which of course nobody knew. So I thought I’d go and give her a hand. Hulk Hogan, Paul Sironen and the lads, thought it was a great potty man idea.

I joined the Melbourne Female Entertainer of the Year 1980 up on the stage, which was really a raised platform about 30cm off the ground. I wasn’t so pissed that I just wandered out there mid-song, I waited, next to the stage patiently until she finished her unknown, original.

Melbourne Female Entertainer of the Year 1980 looked surprised when I wandered out on stage, waving to the crowd. I stumbled a bit as I walked out and gave her a hug.

Melbourne Female Entertainer of the Year 1980 – “Yes?

Me – “Thought I’d let ya know people aren’t really listenin’ to your songs. How about we sing The Gambler, to get the crowd in?

Melbourne Female Entertainer of the Year 1980 – “This is not f#cking karaoke. I am a professional performer. I am Melbourne Female Entertainer of the Year.”

Me – “Well… you were in 1980.”

Melbourne Female Entertainer of the Year 1980 – “Get off my f#cking stage.”

I didn’t want to make a scene. I put up my hands in a sign of acquiescence and stumbled my way back through the tables to Schwarzenegger and the boys.

Ten minutes later, when the band was on a break, my wife was in the toilet with the bride.

Bride – “What’s that noise?

Isabel (listening) – “Oh no.”

On a train bound for nowhere. I met up with a gambler…

I had taken the opportunity to try and save the party. Melbourne Female Entertainer of the Year 1980, stood on the side, giving me the old stink-eye.

Obviously Kenny Rogers was not big in the Ukraine, because my new mates knew none of the words, but enthusiastically bellowed “DA, DA, DA” from our table.

When I got to the chorus I yelled to the crowd. EVERYBODY SING ALONG… there was dead silence.

Except for table 36. They DA, DA, DA’d up a storm.

I turned to my left. Isabel, who I hadn’t spoken to all night, was there, arms crossed angrily and she had a look of such Spanish ferocity, such wrath, that I literally recoiled in horror. Problem was, I recoiled too far and I tumbled off the stage. I hit the ground hard and with an enormous booming sound over the speakers, the mic bounced and broke into about five pieces.

Andre The Giant and Paul Sironen immediately rushed to my aid, lifted me off the ground and carried me above their shoulders, back to our table. Jessy ‘The Body’ Ventura, who, when he wasn’t pushing weights was an electrician, commenced putting the microphone back together.

Once back safely to our table, I thought it’d be a good idea to challenge the Ukrainian bodybuilding team to an arm-wrestling competition. Like you do.

The boys were strong. Very strong. The matches, well… they weren’t exactly close, but at least they were quick and had many spectators.

In the spirit of the mighty Anzacs however, I didn’t come last. No I did not! Schwarzenegger had hurt his pec bench-pressing that morning and couldn’t arm-wrestle. So I actually finished seventh on our table of eight!

Apparently later that night, me and the boys had quite a bit of fun carefully lifting and moving people’s cars to different spots. Hilarious!

The next morning I awoke, in a true world of hurt. My head exploding, needing to vomit, my arm feeling like it’d been torn from its socket and my back near-broken.

As I opened my eyes, I saw Isabel, unsmiling.

Isabel – “I don’t think we should go out any longer.”

What could I say?

Me (through squinted eyes) – “You wouldn’t have any Voltaren would you?

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


That brilliant series “Spartacus”, had a wild orgy scene. It was extremely raunchy, lots of hot slave women getting it on with muscled-up gladiators and Roman soldiers, and being true to the era, there was also quite a bit of bloke-on-bloke action.

So sitting there having a coffee in Hornswood, it got me wondering about the casting process…

Sean Wildman, a young dude who did plenty of theatre in College, left his family and girlfriend in Iowa, hoping to follow his dream in Hollywood.

He got his first break and was offered one of the roles as a “Spartacus” extra! He was over the moon.

Sean’s agent had already told him he was going to be in the orgy scene and only got the gig because he looks so good with his gear off, but what the hell. You have to start somewhere right? Sly Stallone didn’t walk straight into the lead role in Rocky, without having shown some skin previously.

So the fifteen or so muscle-bound blokes who are going to be playing the gladiators and the Romans in the orgy, are waiting in one big room. Leonard, the proudly-effeminate Director’s-assistant is reading off his clipboard and telling everybody their specific, extras roles for the filming that afternoon.

Director’s-assistant Leonard – “Ok gents, quiet please. Listen up now”. He clapped against his clipboard. “The ladies are preparing in the other room and I’m here to let you wonderful men know who’s with who, for this upcoming orgy scene.”

They all fell silent. Nervous anticipation hovered over the room.

Director’s-assistant Leonard – “ROCKO GIBSON?”

Rocko, who was sitting at the back of the room stuck up his hand.

Rocko – “Yes sir Mr Leonard!”      

Director’s-assistant Leonard – “Rocko, you’re simulation is going to be up against the statue of Caesar with the stunning Yazmeen Tulsan. She plays the African warrior princess.”

Rocko – “Thank you sir”. Rocko was understandably happy.

Director’s-assistant Leonard – “Don’t thank me Rocko, just make this scene brilliant! That will be thanks enough”. He ticked Rocko’s name off his list.

Director’s-assistant Leonard – “ALISTAIR MORECOMBE? PUT YOUR HAND UP ALISTAIR”. Alistair did so. “Ok, you are a lucky man Alistair. You’re with the striking Sally-Anne Griffith on the red velvet cushions. She plays a volatile Spanish sex-slave”.

Alistair nodded.

Director’s-assistant Leonard – “Jeremy Holter, Kyle Maxer and Johnny Bullet?” They all popped up their hands. “You boys are all on the tiger skin rug with the beautiful Denise Royal, Emma Rock and Daphne Gall, who are playing Greek slave girls. You can work out with the ladies who goes with who”. The lads looked pleased.

Director’s-assistant Leonard – “Sean Wildman?”

Sean threw up his hand excitedly. He was a long way from Iowa now!

Director’s-assistant Leonard – “Sean you’re bent over the giant urn in front of Big Frank, gladiator’s guard”. He ticked his list. “Tony Polster and Tommy Warner? You’re both with the exquisite Beth Hayley up against the-

Sean (interjecting) – “SORRY… to… interrupt, Director’s-assistant Leonard”.

Director’s-assistant Leonard (impatiently) – “Yeees, what is it?? I only have fifteen minutes to get this done”.

Sean – “I’m um… not sure I caught that… correctly. My name is Sean Wildman. You said I was wiiith…”

Director’s-assistant Leonard – “Wildman… (he checked his list). Giant urn, Big Frank behind you. Brett Smith, where are you Brett?” (Leonard looked up from his clipboard and saw Brett’s raised hand) “You’re with the stunning Amy Tyler under…”

Sean Wildman just sat there stunned as Leonard continued through the list, allocating parts and partners to everybody in the room. Suddenly his haze was broken as a massive, man-mountain loomed over him. The man spoke in a deep, Rusty Crowe voice.

Big Frank (Man Mountain) – “I can’t wait to do this scene with you Sean. And just so you know, I’m a method actor and I take my craft very seriously”.


Imagine eventually, a few months later when Sean in Hollywood gets a phone call from his mum back in Iowa.

Sean’s mum (on the phone) – “Howdy Seanny. It’s mum. I know you wouldn’t tell us when your episode of that Spartacus thingy was going to air, so I rang your agent and convinced him to tell me. Dad and I are sitting here now with all the family and pretty well everybody you’ve ever known in your whole life, crammed into our living room to watch it. In fact your scene’s on right now! LITTLE TOMMY, TURN IT UP!”

Sean – “Oh mum, no!”

Sean’s mum – “Now don’t be shy son. So, which one are you? There’s so many people in this scene.”

Sean (dejected) – “Up the back mum. Far right”.

Sean’s mum (he knew his mum would be squinting) – “But that’s not you Seanny”.

Sean – “No… not him mum. That’s Big Frank the method actor. You can’t see my face. I’m… bent over the urn”.

Sean hears his seven-year old cousin in the background. “THERE HE IS! THAT BIG NAKED MAN IS WRESTLING WITH HIM LIKE ROVER DOES”.

Then he hears his elderly grandmother laugh. “IS THAT WHAT HE MEANT BY RECEIVING AN OSCAR ONE DAY?”

Sean’s mum – “Oh… golly Seanny… you’re very… oh, golly. It looks… very… oh dear God!”

Thanks for reading. I write blogs oftentimes just to be able to claim when meeting a new person at a party, that I am in fact… a writer (whereby my wife generally jumps in and proclaims “HE’S NOT A WRITER”). If you could Share far and wide via the buttons below, that would be amazing. I write stuff for a few small companies but I need to one day be a famous contributor to the noble art of blogging. And check out the brilliant new craft-beer home delivery business I have set up with a few North Shore dads ( Cheers


I came home the other night and I was… really, really drunk. No other way to describe it. Maggotted! Which I don’t do very often.

I struggled up my hallway, trying my best to make no noise, without turning on any lights. I didn’t want to bring any family attention to my… condition. I eventually made my way to the kitchen. I flicked on the light, revealing to my horror, sitting upon one of the apples in our fruit bowl, an enormous cockroach!

We both looked intently at one another. I felt myself swaying due to my intoxication, so I grabbed the bench to steady my wobbling body.

Me – (to the cockie) COCKIE! Where’s my spray?

I was in no condition to be in control of toxic gas but I looked around for the can.

Cockroach (to me) – My name’s Lenny, and I f#cking hate humans! You see this apple I’m sitting on?

This was not a situation I was expecting, to say the very least.

Me – Um… yeah.

I didn’t really look at the apple. I looked around the kitchen. I was indeed alone, just me… and the cockie.

Cockroach – I had wild sex with my wife on that apple, two nights ago. And this red one next to it, I shat on that, just last night. And that yellow nectarine there next to the apple, my wife and I had sex on that one about an hour ago! So, UP YOURS human! I hope you enjoy the taste.

The cockie looked at me smugly.

Now I knew I was pissed, however I just stared at the talking cockie, absolutely incredulous. Stunned.

Me – HOW much sex, are you getting???

Cockroach – As much as I want man. I’m a f#cking cockroach! We don’t have fancy cars, fancy holidays, nice clothes, all we do is eat, drink and have sex!

I nodded, impressed.

Me – Quality? Maybe his world wasn’t so perfect after all!

Cockroach – Superb! So F#CK YOU MAN. I HATE ALL YOU HUMANS.

I was getting a bit annoyed by his aggression.

Me – Just wind it back a bit mate. Maybe we don’t like you and your type either.


Me – Well… at least we don’t have the word “cock” in our name.

I wish I had somebody there I could high-five. I smiled at him. That one put him back in his place.

Cockroach – A few times a week, me and my cousin Shane, try to wipe our arses across your mouth without waking you up.

Me – WHAT??? YOU MOTHER F#CKERS! He’d crossed the line.

Cockroach – And old Shano scratches his balls on your toothbrush most nights. It’s the blue one right? He says it makes his nether regions smell nice and minty, for the ladies, if you know what I mean. He chuckled.


I reached for the can of Pea Beau on top of the fridge, and then had to hold onto the fridge to steady myself again.

Cockroach – What are you going to f#cking do man? Spray the whole f#cking bowl of fruit?

He had a point.

Me – MAYBE I SHOULD JUST SQUASH THE WHITE CUSTARD OUT OF YOU. Get out of my house Lenny! This is not going to end well.

Cockroach – Your house??? Yours? My ancestors have lived here for 39 years mate, so f#ck you!

I thought it was time to take a bit of the heat out of the confrontation.

Me – How many kids you got?

Cockroach – Fourteen thousand, seven hundred and four, spread all over Hornswood. He clicked his fingers.

Cockroach – Actually, fourteen thousand, seven hundred and two, due to an issue with some baits under a fridge in St Ives on the weekend.

Me – I’m sorry to hear that Lenny.

I’m not completely heartless.

Cockroach – No… you’re… NOT!

Me – True, I’m not. Now, I’m going to have to kill you… Lenny.


Me – Hey, that’s gender stereotyping Lenny!

I raised the Pea Beau and Lenny raced off the apple and ran down the side of the bowl. Can in hand I circled the bowl, but he wasn’t there!

I lifted it up, but like magic he was gone. He had disappeared. I thought, how do they do that?

The next morning I was hung-over like a dog and my wife asked me why the fruit bowl and my toothbrush were sitting in the fridge. I didn’t know what to tell her.

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


Sometimes I get in trouble for occasionally saying inappropriate things. However, if you knew my siblings, you’d understand that it’s not my fault. It’s genetic.

My brother Linc, managed to completely offend a gathering of Hornswood mothers, a few years ago.

His wife was working, they’d only moved to the area a few weeks earlier and he found himself the only bloke invited to a Lindfield Public School mother’s luncheon.

He lacks no confidence, at all, but Linc was a bit nervous about having lunch with ten women he’d never met. He’s a bit unsure what he’s going to add to the conversations of the ex accountants, lawyers, marketers and executives that often make up the Hornswood mother’s groups.

So there he was sitting, not saying much, with ten mums around a living room table. They were all talking up a storm, but he was content with a beer in front of him, a tiny but very tasty chicken sandwich in one hand and a brown-rice sushi roll on his plate just awaiting his pleasure.

This was a much better sandwich than he was used to.

One of the mums spoke loudly to the hostess, who was seated at the other end of the table next to Linc.

Caroline – “How’d your sphincter-tightening operation go Suzy?”

Linc’s ears immediately pricked up. What the?? Sphincter-tightening? That’s a thing?

Hostess Suzy – “Painful, but all good Caroline. Thanks for asking.”

My brother was unsure what to say to such a public airing of such a private matter. But it made him think what the hell was I nervous about? These Hornswood mums clearly aren’t uptight at all. On the contrary! That Suzy looks like she’s snobby, but looks are obviously deceptive.

He was immediately reminded of a personal story he could recount, now that Suzy had made it permissible to tell any medical, below-the-waist stories.

Linc – “I never knew you could get that done, but I suppose we’re all getting older Suzy.”

Suzy looked at him, a little blankly.

Linc – “That makes me think ladies, of when I was going for my scuba diving license.”

He felt very sure everybody was going to enjoy his story, it always got laughs. All had gone silent to listen to the new guy.

Centre stage.

Linc – “To get your scuba license you have to give a urine sample. To make a long story short, they found blood in my urine, which turned out to be nothing, but I had to go in and have a camera put up the eye of my penis.”

My brother doesn’t mess around for long when he’s on the Centre State. He gets straight into it.

Linc – “So I’m fully bombed out right, having the procedure when suddenly I wake up! Now I was expecting the camera operator of course, doing his thing down there, but holy-crap, it looked like there was not just the cameraman, but a director, actors, two or three extras, a claperboard guy and the catering lady. It was a full house! People everywhere!”

Still nobody spoked. Linc thought, they’re intrigued. 

“There was a cast of thousands all standing around watching as a doctor pushed a camera into the eye of my (he searched for the right word)… schlong.” Damn he thought, that wasn’t it, but keep going. “Then all of them immediately looked at me as they realised I’d woken up mid-procedure. Being drugged, I panicked and started to writhe around. And writhing around is not something you want to do when somebody has placed a camera into… my old-fella.” A much better word.

A big team.

This was going well.

“Anyway, they bombed me out again and…”

Linc noticed that all the women were sitting in stony silence. A few of them were looking a bit ashen faced and a couple had their mouths slightly ajar.

Hostess Suzy – “Oh… my… God. We’ve only just met you Lincoln. Do you think it’s appropriate to tell a disgusting story like that in my house??”

Now my brother instantly felt highly embarrassed, confused and more than a bit defensive. How had he so misread the acceptability or otherwise, of his break-the-ice-story? He put his legs down on the ground, he had propped them up on his seat adding a bit of a demonstration to his words.

Linc – “What?? You were the one who told everybody you’d had your…” He thought for a second. “Anus tightened!!”

All the Hornswood mums sat still. Silent. My brother learned an important lesson that day.

Apparently we all have a sphincter in our stomach.

He left the gathering shortly after.

Thanks for reading. I write blogs, oftentimes simply to claim at parties much to my wife’s chagrin, that I am in fact… a writer. At other times, to allow businesses and businesspeople to get their message across.

If you could Share via the buttons below, that would be amazing. Pleeeease do. I need to one day be a famous contributor to the noble art that is – Blogging.

Cheers. Jase. 


About five years ago I was sitting in the front row of the Shore drama theatre. My son’s play was about to start, the lights had come on and everybody had gone completely silent. My six-year-old daughter, prodded me in the ribs as a signal to pass her a couple of Maltesers. I did so, she dropped one and of course it rolled noisily, right into the centre of the stage.

Everybody in the place was looking at the Malteser, which a responsible Year-12 kid immediately leaped up and binned. Of course all eyes then moved to me, with the box of Maltesers in one hand and two in my mouth.

I gave the kid the ol’ double thumbs up.


The play was going amazingly well. At interval I got myself beer and one for a mate of mine who was sitting directly behind us, my lovely wife didn’t want anything.

Turned out my mate had the same idea and he’d bought me a beer also. So we were both then standing there in the foyer with two beers each to drink in the ten-minute interval.

Anyway, my mate went to the toilet, so I looked around for somebody to talk to and spied… the Headmaster.

Now I’d never spoken to the Shore headmaster before. His reputation at the school was of an intelligent, honorable, highly regarded, Christian man. I thought he’d be good for a laugh.

As my son was going to be at the school for the next five years, I was a bit anxious about meeting the big man and was conscious of at least not making a terrible impression. So I swapped both my beers to my left hand and introduced myself.

He was just as nice as everybody had said. I offered him one of my beers, making sure I let him know I hadn’t drunk from both, but he politely declined. We chatted for a few minutes. Then:

Headmaster – “Jason, your Jake’s a really gifted actor and a fine young man. You should be very proud.”

Me – “Yeah we are, most the time. But faaaaark, he can be a smart-arse!” (I sipped my left beer).

Headmaster – “They all can Jason. Oh, you absolutely have to meet Jake’s drama teacher! I’ll call her over.”

Now Jake had already given me the full scoop on his drama teacher. His tall… blonde… fit drama teacher! I wanted to let the Headmaster, a fellow bloke, know that I was already in the know and that in his professional position he didn’t have to spell it out for me.

Me – “I’ve heard mate, I’ve heard. A tall blonde hottie right!”

It turns out when the Headmaster said “oh, you absolutely have to meet Jake’s drama teacher he didn’t actually mean “oh man you absolutely have to meet to meet Jake’s drama teacher because she’s a tall blonde hottie.” He actually meant “oh, you absolutely have to meet to meet Jake’s drama teacher because she’s a great drama teacher.” I had misread his meaning completely.

I remember a look on his face for just a moment that said, surely I misunderstood Jason’s meaning. A Shore parent, an Old-Boy, just wouldn’t say something like that to the Headmaster and mean it like it sounded.

The look on his face then said, oh wow, this man actually DID mean it like it sounded! I need to walk away.

Headmaster (while pointing to something behind me) – “Anyway Jason, it was great to meet you. I have to go and um…”

And with that he was gone.

I sipped my right beer. It was warmer than the left so I decided to leave it, as I’d probably only have enough time to drink one anyway.

In the car on the way home to Hornswood, Jake was buzzing from his highly successful play and I thought he’d get a laugh from my “I met your Headmaster at interval” story.

Jake – “You said WHAT to the headmaster?”

Me (feeling a bit defensive due to his adverse reaction) – “YOU WERE THE ONE WHO SAID SHE WAS A TALL, BLONDE HOTTIE.”


Me (after a pause) – “Yeah… well sometimes it’s what you DON’T say that actually says it all.”

My wife – Hottie is not what he said and even if he did, you don’t raise it in your first ever moment with the Headmaster!”

Me – “I know that NOW. But I didn’t have a lot of time to plan my answer out you know!”

There was a moment of silence.

Me – “It’s ok, next time I see him I’ll say th…”

Jake (interrupting my mea culpa) – “THERE WON’T BE A NEXT TIME.”

I couldn’t help but feel partially responsible for the situation.

Jake – “And why are people talking about a Malteser you lobbed onto the stage?”

Thanks for reading. I write blogs oftentimes just to claim at parties much to my wife’s chagrin, that I am in fact… a writer. If you could Share far and wide via the buttons below, that would be amazing. I need to one day be a famous contributor to the noble art, of blogging. And check out my new craft beer business I set up with a few North Shore dads ( Cheers


I’m not sure of the Politically Correct term for a homeless bloke. Tramp, bum, vagabond and vagrant all seem too insulting, classist and a bit mean. So I’m going to use “hobo”.

One night a few years ago I was sitting in the Hornswood RSL with half a dozen mates, beers in hand, discussing the Rugby League (wonderful game that it is). One of our mates (Budgie) had stood up to put on a bet and a really big hobo stumbled over and just sat down in his seat.

I’m very respectful to homeless people. The phrase there but for the grace of God go I, is absolutely gold in any hobo situation. So despite the fact that the place was pretty much empty, we allowed him to sit at our table with no protests.

At the risk of insulting the entire hobo class, this large guy really smelt badly of all the clichéd hobo smells. An acrid, eye-watering mix of urine, ingrained body odour, cigarettes and alcohol. He smelled so badly, we found ourselves subtly turning our heads away to breathe.

Reiterating, I am in no way anti-hobo, but he had filthy clothes, greasy hair, a massive, knotted, grey beard which was stained with cigarettes and food. Watching him sit there gumming and slobbering around the top of his beer, was a bit… disturbing, but we maintained our respectful attitude towards the man.

My mate Budgie returned from the bar, saw his seat was “large-hobo-occupied”, so off he went to the bathroom.

One of my mates – “You doing ok today friend?”

The hobo sucked on his beer again, slobber ran down the side and he burped a guttural burp into the top of it.

Hobo – “Got spare change?”

The doorman from the RSL approached our table about to escort the hobo outside, I gave him a little it’s ok wave of the hand.

Me – “Sure do brother.”

We all coughed up the coins in our pockets and dumped it on the table. He grabbed the coins up with a sweep of the hand, gladly accepted the two ciggies one of my mates offered him and stood up. He grabbed his beer, quickly sculled most of its content, coughed into it, smiled a black-teeth smile, gave us a thumbs-up and then left.

Budgie came back to his seat, now empty.

Again, no hobo-phobia, but the entire area smelled particularly funky. Over the next five minutes, Budgie sat there and drank the last few sips of his beer.

It was my turn to shout, so being the local RSL, I helpfully gathered up the empty bottles.

Me – “Same again lads? Five Peroni’s and… (I looked at Budgie’s beer bottle as his was a different colour to ours) one Tooheys New”.

Budgie – “No Cool Hand (my self-ascribed poker call-sign), it’s six Peroni’s. I’m on Peroni’s too.”

Me – (looking at his empty bottle) “But that’s a Tooheys.

A look of horror etched itself on Budgie’s face. He went white.


He went green.


I cannot remember ever laughing so hard in my entire life.

When he saw Budgie had gone to put his bet on, the hobo, had brazenly strolled into our midst, conned us out of about $15 in change, scabbed two ciggies, stood, sculled Budgie’s 80%-full Peroni and replaced it with a 20%-full hobo-Tooheys New. The perfect sting.

We laughed, and we laughed and we laughed. Budgie… not so much.

The rest of the night was permeated with periods of laughter, talk of potentially catching hobo-whooping cough and reminders of hobo-body odour and hobo-breath. And more laughter.

He was without a doubt the coolest, most brazen hobo in all of Hornswood. The Clint Eastwood of hobos.


Check out my new writing business, which allows me to claim at parties that I am in fact, a professional writer ( It’d be REALLY awesome if you hit the Facebook Share button below, or just give the post a thumbs up. Cheers.


Nothing screams “CHRISTMAS” in our Hornswood home more, than having eight bottles of Hahn Super Dry (low carb) and challenging your brother-in-law to a push-ups competition. Nothing! Santa, nativity scenes, carols, tinsel, coloured lights, presents, Christmas trees, Hahn Super Dry and push-ups. It all goes together.

I was explaining to my brother-in-law Toby, how after a period of about 20 years of inactivity and fatness, I now have the world’s greatest personal trainer (Wayne Nicholls PT – he deserves a plug) and push-ups have become my area of expertise. With proper technique I had recently set my record at an enormous 25 (keeping in mind I weigh 112.4 kg, so when I push-up, I’m pushing up a fair bit).

Me – “Come on Tobe. Don’t be soft. WE GONNA GET IT ON, ‘CAUSE WE DON’T GET ALONG.” I did a little Ali shuffle, raised my hands in a pre-emptive victory celebration, dropped and assumed the push-up position.


I was feeling pretty good after the first five. My shoulders knew what was coming, they were surprised it was happening on Christmas day mind you, but they were sort of ready.


STAY FOCUSED! My Shoulders and biceps weren’t quite screaming yet, but there were certainly getting rowdy. KEEP GOING.


PAIN AND SUFFERING! I was really hurting. The arms were shaking, my face was red like Clive Palmer in a sauna.



I HAD EQUALED MY RECORD, but it wasn’t enough for me. Not this day. Not on this stage. In front of the family, under my own roof, in my domain! I wanted… no, more than that, I NEEDED, to smash my record. I needed to set an un-beatable total, which I could laud over Toby until probably the next Christmas.


My arms wobbled like a gelatin dessert. PUSH! The last one was going to be slooow.

27… YES!!!!


I collapsed onto the floor, then I jumped to my feet. I was sucking in the big ones, my face burned and veins bulged, I was sweating, I couldn’t move my arms and wanted to vomit up my 8 Christmas Super Drys. But I’d done it. 27!!


Toby didn’t say anything but I could tell he was concerned. He’s seven years older than me, well past his prime at 54. I was rushing around the room, obviously trying to get a crowd chant of “TWENTY-SEVEN” going, while high-fiving my brother and his wife, my elderly Spanish mother-in-law (who thought I wanted the remote control), my son and my wife (who actually refused to return my high-five and just left me hanging).

Toby dropped to the ground and started his push-ups painfully slowly.


I knew he had no chance. One of my push-up record-attaining secrets, is to start fast, so when you hit the wall, you’ve got a decent number on the board.

Me – “Watch that left shoulder mate.” His technique was actually flawless and there was nothing wrong with his left shoulder, but I had to start the piss-taking somewhere.


Me – “Need a breather mate? Jeez twenty-seven must seem so freaken unattainable just about now.


I’d never seen slower push-ups. All that cannelloni and beer had had a bigger impact on him than I’d anticipated.

Me – “Is it too late to get a bet on? Tobe, you know, LOTS of ladies have difficulty getting over twenty.


Me – “Do you want your sister to take over mate?


Me – “It’s not your fault… It’s not your fault… It’s not your fault.


Me – “Don’t worry Tobe. It’s not that you’re weak … it’s just that you’re very fat.” He actually isn’t fat like me, but a good sledge, is a good sledge.


Me – “Maybe, to be fair, I should do push-ups and you should do… Jenga.


Damn, now I was getting a little nervous. He was getting close to my magical number and his pace was still exactly the same. I needed a really hard-hitting sledge to put him off his game.

Me – “YOU GIRL’S BLOUSE.” Damn, that one was much more effective in the 80’s.


I won’t bore you with the details, but once he had beaten my record by twenty, he stood up. Forty seven.

He wasn’t puffing, wasn’t red in the face, wasn’t sweating, his arms weren’t shaking and he could walk properly. His sister (my loving wife), gave him a quick, loud high-five and handed him back his Super Dry. He sat down, sipped the beer and they continued their conversation. It was like he’d just left his seat to change the channel.

My brother – “Another beer Tobe?” My brother high-fived Toby.

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


A mate told me he didn’t love my last blog, because the punch-line wasn’t very funny.

Punch-line?? I explained that I’m not Rodney Dangerfield telling a “did somebody step on a duck” gag. My blog is my musings on things that strike me, as I drag myself through life as a Hornswood dad.

Case in point.

My wife and I were in San Francisco a few years ago, at a carnival, when I spied an “I’ll Guess Your Weight” stand (very American).

Now I am, fairly… broad. Broad in the shoulders, broad in the legs and broad in the gut. The thing with broadness, is that people ALWAYS severely underestimate my weight. They say “you carry it well,” which of course means “you’re fat, you carry it well.”

I look about 12kg (26lbs) less than I really am. I know this because whenever the subject of weight comes up and I tell people I’m 112kg, they inevitably say, “wow, you don’t look any more than a 100“.

Anyway, I’m thinking, a guess your weight competition is tailor-made for me. My KFC Retention Problem, is finally going to do some good.

So you pay $5 and if they guess within 3lbs, they win. If they are wrong, but are within 6lbs, you get to pick a prize from the first two (dodgy) shelves. However, if they are outside 6lbs, you get to pick from the entire stand! It was a big stand.

It was my turn. They handed me a microphone. There were about fifty people standing around watching the entertainment and the carnie had picked the last eleven players correctly, so the crowd was right into it.

I knew he wasn’t going to get within 20lbs of mine and I’ve always had a chronic, un-abating distrust of carnies, so I was playing it up a little.


Cigar-smoking carnie – “I’m Calvin. Where you hail from son?


The crowd cheered loudly. I got the sense they were keen to see somebody knock Calvin off his high-horse. I was just the man to do it. Calvin chewed on his stogie.

Carnie Calvin – “We take a disliking to loud Aussies here son.

Me – “That’s all right Calvin. I’VE ALWAYS HAD A CHRONIC, UN-ABATING DISTRUST OF CARNIES.” The crowd cheered again.

Calvin was getting angry. He’d lost the crowd, despite having won the last eleven weighs. He walked around me three times, mentally calculating my height, my clothing and (I assumed mis-calculating) my broadness.

I tried to put him off a bit. It was a battle of wits, for the ultimate prize – a five-foot tall, foam-filled, Spongebob Squarepants.

Me – “Calvin… that’s a funny name for a carnie. Just so you know mate, I’ll be taking that big Spongebob.

The crowd oooh’d. They all admired the massive Spongebob sitting pride of place, atop the stand.

Me – “Hey Calvin, maybe you’re just not used to guessing Aussie weights. Maybe there’s just more to us than meets the eye Calvin. If you know what I mean.” The crowd laughed at Calvin. He was fuming.

Me – “Factor in Aussie girth Calvin.” A bit rude, but I was on a roll!

My wife – “JASE.” She was not enjoying my battle with Calvin.

Me – “Shoulder girth I meant, darling.

Calvin was ready to guess.

Me – “Do you want a hand getting Spongebob down Calvin?” Everybody laughed, I was loving having a microphone.

Carnie Calvin – “YOU’RE TWO HUNDERED AND TWENTY THREE POUNDS SON, OR ONE HUNDRED AND ONE KILOGRAMS.” He smiled a wily old smile at me. He was confident.

I threw my arms into the air in a victory salute as I stepped onto the scales. 246 LBS, 112 KG!! I HAD WON! YES!!

The crowd roared. I pointed at Calvin and his face reddened. His run had been put to an end by the loud Aussie. I had secured a hard-fought win.

My wife walked off when I started “AUSSIE, AUSSIE, AUSSIE.

A few hours later when we were leaving, a Japanese tourist was trying to console his youngster who’d just dropped his fairy floss onto the ground only to have it rolled over by guy moving a keg of beer.

Because we were stepping on to a plane that night, I gave the kid Calvin’s massive Spongebob. The father was very grateful and became excited when he recognised me from my earlier triumph.

Japanese dad (in a thick accent) – “Hoh, you Australee fat man!

I had no way of informing him that I had in fact won the competition for being deceptively fat, not just for being fat.

My wife just shook her head.

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


Since we left high school, my six oldest mates and I have had an annual, drunken, early-Christmas gathering. Doing barefoot bowls at Hornswood Bowling Club last Saturday, I had a surreal moment. Not overly funny, but surreal.


We did not know when we booked, that there was a wake taking place inside the club that afternoon. Harry, club secretary, had tragically passed away at 91 and there was about a hundred people crammed into the little club, to say goodbye.

The classic old bowling club catered for all tastes, having Tooheys New, Tooheys Old and Tooheys Lite (only) on tap. We were the only ones bowling and were putting away jugs of beer like veterinarians on a pharmaceutical company junket.

Being sensitive to the feelings of secretary Harry’s friends and family, when we got our first round at the bar after making our way through the tightly packed emotional throng, we asked the lady could she bring our drinks out to us? We would tip her every time, so we wouldn’t have to insensitively weave through the mourners.

This worked wonderfully, up until the time it was my turn, to pay her for the shout.

Our jugs were empty, but our lady, who had been so attentive when it was the other lad’s rounds, was nowhere to be seen. The boys were thirsty from bowling, so I had no choice but to drag my inebriated self through the despondent crowd of secretary Harry grievers. Not good.

I went inside and EVERY guest was now SEATED, listening to speeches. The rows of seats went all the way back to the wall. There was absolutely no way to get to the bar, unless I was completely tactless and insensitive and was prepared to walk up and over the stage, behind the speaker at the lectern, with 100 highly emotional attendees, staring at me.

The trip over the stage was harrowing. I could feel all 199 eyes (one very old guy in the front row appeared to only have one) burning a hole in my brain as I tried to make my 110-111kg frame unnoticeable, as I snuck along behind the speaker.

Getting to the bar, I was pretty angry about the bar lady making me run the gauntlet. I am very respectful of age, funerals, bravery, hard work and the like.

Me – “Two jugs of New and two packets of salt and vinegar chips thanks”.

I smiled at the girl who had been, up until now, bringing our drinks out to us.

Me – “Are you… surprised… to see me in here?” My tone was brash, but her forgetfulness had forced me to walk behind the lectern and distract all those people from secretary Harry’s eulogy!

Her – “Yeah I am”. She gave me a funny look.

Me – “Well I certainly didn’t want to come in here.” I gave her the old stink-eye.

Her – “No. What?”

What was the point? I paid, gathered up the two jugs and the chips and prepared to traverse back over the stage and receive the looks of seething rage from the 100.

Up I went, the only thing in my favour was that I knew nobody could yell loudly at me in the middle of the eulogy.

Then, the old guy with one eye, yelled loudly at me.

Old one-eye – “HEY MATE! IT’S A WAKE YOU KNOW!”

I was mortified. Even through my shield of intoxication and my socially thick-skin… I was mortified.

I stopped for a second, looked up from my two jugs of Tooheys New and stared meekly at the predominantly elderly crowd. Half of them had tears in their eyes and the others just looked angry as all hell.


After a fraction of a second of torturous hesitation, the whole place erupted into cheers. Secretary Harry was obviously fond of a beer himself, as everybody burst into applause.

I made my way back to the safety of the bowling green, with a good story to tell.

The lads meanwhile, were drinking the two jugs that the bar lady had brought out, just when I had gone inside!

It actually turned into a great night and celebration of Harry’s life. We moved inside with the crowd once the sun went down and enjoyed a brilliant night of music with a local band playing 80s classics. So much so:




It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


While my wife was shopping for stuff we simply couldn’t live without, I went to get a massage at “Majestic Hands”, a secluded little shop in Hornswood Westfield.

It was magnificent. Dark, with exotic Chinese music, relaxing running water and smelled wonderfully of incense. As soon as I walked in for my “Back, Neck and Shoulders – 45 minutes”, I started to relax.


Now I’m happily married, however, I couldn’t help but be enthused by the “Majestic Hands” massage lady who led me to my little curtained-off oasis. She was absolutely stunning! She looked like Lucy Liu! Wow!

I know her physical appearance is not relevant in this day and age, and her ability to do the job is all that matters. However first and foremost I am a man… and she was red-hot! Life was good.

So the massage progressed really well. I lapsed into a near-euphoric state, my muscles were loosening up like never before and I was developing quite a relationship with Lucy Liu (albeit a silent one). She just seemed to get stronger and stronger, and better and better at her trade as the time progressed.

Anyway, most disappointingly, the time seemed to be eaten up in a blink of an eye. It was over. I was snapped out of my utopia, had to open my eyes and I raised my head from the little face-hole in the massage table.

I wanted to have one last look at the stunning Lucy Liu and see if I could gauge the degree to which our time together had meant something to her. If our Back, Neck and Shoulders 45 minutes, had been as intimate for her, as it had been for me. I know she’s a professional, but surely that one was somehow… special.

I looked up, my eyes were cloudy and it was dark, but I fixed my gaze upon her.

I froze.

At some time during the massage, Lucy Liu had been replaced, with a very old-looking… dude.




Now don’t get me wrong. I have two metal rods running the length of my spine and have had full spinal-fusion (long story), so I have had more massages, physio’s and chiro’s than even most members of the Hornswood Golden Oldies Rugby Club. I am not anti-bloke massagers at all! On the contrary.

But I was MAJESTIC HAND-SWAPPED!! I was lead to believe Lucy Liu was the one putting her hands all over me in an intimate way. Not Mr Myagi!

Lawyers, are “Majestic Hands” allowed to do that?? Are they not in breach of some “truth in advertising” laws? Did I not have some sort of implied contract with Lucy Liu? Should they not have to do some little tag-team slap to let me know somebody else has entered the relationship?

Were they all standing around laughing about the guy on table 3 who thinks he’s having a Lucy Liu and he’s actually being Mr Myagi’d? Did I do something wrong?

As I sheepishly got dressed by myself in that dark little room, I wasn’t sure what to think. The allure of the last 45 minutes had been turned on its head.

I paid and left. As I did so Mr Myagi looked up from his newspaper. He gave me a wink and a look that said “you can come back any time big boy”.

Later that night I was out with the lads.

Me – “I got a massage in Hornswood Westfield today.” I stared into my bourbon and dry.

Paully – “Any good?” Paully stared up at the TAB screen.


It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


Some people in our street about ten years back, threw a get to know the neighbours party. They seemed nice.

By about midnight, I’d committed a couple of the common, wife-annoying, social faux pas we all make from time to time – dropping a wafer-thin slice of pavlova onto the snooker table and not managing to stifle my laughter when Benny (the host) revealed to us all that he plays his ukulele and sings by himself every night.

Suddenly the front door opened and two young lads walk in, looking a bit… out of sorts. I saw one subtly slip a shiny, black, leather-bound hip flask into his back pocket.

Shiny, black, leather-bound hip flask. Shiny, black, leather-bound hip flask.


It was pretty obvious Richard the son and his mate had been out on the drink and the last thing they felt like doing was chatting to oldies they’d never met.

Me – “Been out for a few cleansing ales hey boys?” Just being friendly.

Richard – “Bible study.

That was a witty retort from Richard, but he delivered it in an arrogant, dismissive, twenty’ish-year-old way and smiled to his mate.

It annoyed me. I knew they’d been out drinking, I wasn’t going to judge them in front of all those people I didn’t know (I was in no position to), but why did he have to answer as if to say you’re all too old to understand having a good time, so we’ll just call it bible study.

Me – “Seriously boys, where have you been?” I was trying to be polite, but was not prepared to play the old fool role.

Richard – “Bible study.” He winked at his mate!

That was too much. He’d been out drinking. I knew it. He knew I knew it, but nobody else seemed to know it!

Me – “Rich, you and your mate have been out on the piss. No twenty something-year-old lads go to bible study at midnight on a Saturday. So don’t come in here with your bull. The boozer? A mate’s house? Out with some ladies?

Richard – “Bible study.

Me (in my best mocking tone) – “Oh riiiiight, biiiible study. Well why didn’t you say so Rich?? That’s what we’ve been doing tonight too!” I pointed to my beer. “Yep, had about five hours of intense bible study so far. I’m as studied up as a newt! If I do any more bible study, I’ll be sick as a dog tomorrow. I’m actually backing up because last night I went out with a half a dozen mates, I think we had about ten schooners each of bible study.

This went on for a little while. Unfortunately, it turned out that Richard and his friend, had indeed been at bible study that night.


My wife – “Time to go Jase.

Me – “THAT’S NOT MY FAULT! What twenty two-year-olds study bible ON A SATURDAY NIGHT??

The two young lads started up the stairs and then, even through my foggy mind I remembered… the hip flask!

It was my smoking gun. My one-armed man.

Me – “BEFORE YOU GO RICHARD.” I had to speak loudly, as they were halfway up the stairs and truth be told I wanted everybody to hear my vindication.

Richard – “Yeees?


Little Richard looked stunned.

Host Benny – “Richard?


He reached into his back pocket, very hesitantly.

I felt like throwing up my hands in victory. However, the moral high ground beckoned. I wasn’t going to gloat. I was better than that.

Richard, slowly, pulled out a shiny, black, leather-bound… bible.

We weren’t invited back to their house.

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


A mate of mine hurt his knee skiing moguls last week. Now I know what you’re thinking. Why the hell is a guy who’s fifty, doing moguls? What is he trying to prove? He obviously has no idea of his age right? Mid-life crisis? Idiot?

Anyway, he stuffs his knee doing moguls and just to be on the safe side, gets rescued by the ski patrol. All very embarrassing… for a man of his age.

On Tuesday he goes to the knee specialist back in Sydney, Dr Robert. He’s hoping he’s only done minor damage, but he suspects he may have really strained it badly.

They’re sitting in Dr Robert’s surgery looking at his knee X-ray. My mate has just arrived back after having visited Dr Robert’s colleague (Dr Colin) who works next door, for a second opinion.

Now my mate is an obsessed skier and he has a huge overseas skiing trip booked in the next few weeks and he and his wife at home, are absolutely desperate, for his knee injury to be minor. Desperate!

Dr Colin doesn’t phone, so Dr Robert eventually rings him. He puts the phone on speaker as he dials, which my mate thinks is great, because he knows if he listens closely to the subtle intonations in Dr Colin’s voice, he may be able to work out to what degree he’s really damaged his knee. Probably it would be more about what Dr Colin doesn’t say, in his professional, guarded, doctor speak, that will give him the real picture. My mate’s smart and an astute business negotiator, he’ll easily work the true gravity of the situation, just by listening intently to their doctor-to-doctor conversation, if they leave it on speaker.

Dr Robert – “Colin! Robert from next door. How are you?

My mate listened closely, being ready to pick up any subtle bit of information from the specialist’s tone of voice.

Dr Colin (on speaker phone) – “MATE I’M NOT COMPLETELY FU#KED LIKE THAT GUY YOU JUST SENT ME. Hold on to him like he’s fu#king gold Robert! Ha ha! He’s paying for your son’s next two terms of school fees!

Dr Robert (after a pause) – “I’ll call you back Colin.

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


There is one pub in Hornswood which is lovely now, but twenty years ago was dodgy. It was rough, known as a hangout for bikies, dealers and tough dudes.

I was at a work function in ’96 and for some reason, we had moved from a trendy bar in the city, to The Hornswood Dodgy Hotel. We had been drinking… heaps.

Anyway, nature called. I needed to shake hands with the man. So I made my way through the crowd to the gents.

There was a woman in there, by herself, looking in the mirror. She turned and gave me the old stink-eye. She was not happy to see me at all.

Nor was I happy to see her. That place is the last true bastion of manhood.

Angry woman in the men’s – “Wrong place you f#cking idiot, this is the ladies!

She had a really aggressive tone. It instantly got my back up.

Me – “Actually I think you’re in the wrong place (I left a deliberate pause where she had used f#cking idiot, to take the moral high ground), this is the men’s.

Angry woman in the men’s – “Why would I be in the men’s?

My brain was a bit cloudy, but I came up with the perfect retort.

Me – “Well… why would I be in the ladies?” It felt good. I now had the moral high ground and the psychological advantage.

Angry woman in the men’s – “Because you’re a drunk f#cking idiot!


Me – “Whoa, whoa, whoa! I’m not drunk.

I was drunk.

I did take a sneaky look around and couldn’t see any urinal, but it could have been around the corner. And the place did smell quite nice. However, I was standing my ground.

Me – “The only way we can settle this is to wait for the next person to enter.

She sighed deeply.

Me – “If I’m wrong, I’ll admit you’re right and that I’m a drunk f#cking idiot. If you’re wrong, you admit that just being sober and angry, doesn’t make you right.

With such high stakes, I was getting a little nervous.

We talked coolly for a few moments, about nothing really, just two people who didn’t really want to be in each other’s company, making chit-chat. I put off shaking hands with the man, until the situation was clarified.

Finally the door opened inwards and a large Maori looking, BLOKE, walked in.


I threw up my hand to high-five the big man. He ignored me.

Me – “Don’t leave me hangin’ bud.” I waved my high-five-awaiting hand around a bit.

Maori looking bloke – “ARSEHOLE, you’re in the ladies. Out!

Damn. I felt like a fool. I obediently started to follow the bouncer.

Angry woman in the ladies – “Don’t you have something to say?

She gave me the stink eye again. This time it really burned.

Me – “I was wrong.

I started towards the door, which the bouncer held open.

Angry woman in the ladies – “And?

Me – “Huh?

Angry woman in the ladies – “Annnd?

Me – “And I’m a drunk f#cking idiot.

Angry woman in the ladies – “Thank you.” She turned to the mirror and continued to put on makeup.

Maori looking bloke – “Drunk hey? Time to go home then arsehole.

Anyway, it took some time, but I eventually talked my way out of being evicted. And an hour or so later… it was time to shake hands with the man again.

Into the gents (this time) I went and just for a second, I thought the two blokes at the sinks were women, because the previous run-in still burned fresh in my mind and they both were tending to their particularly long hair. One was wetting his hair down and one looked to be tying his back in a pony-tail.

I was so relieved that I hadn’t made the same mistake again.

Me – “Jeez boys, I thought I was in the ladies!

I wish I had thought before I spoke, a common failing for me.

The two men stood straight up and turned. They were massive, scary, bikies! One was about six-foot five, the other was not much shorter. Big men. Lots of neck tattoos, muscles, bikie colours, thick moustaches, the works. They looked ready to bollard me to death.

I knew if I didn’t turn the mood around immediately, I was gone. I took a punt.


They were huge. I’m not small, six-foot one and 111.6kg (which I round down to 111), but these boys both dwarfed me. They didn’t laugh. One of them started towards me. I had to take one last crack at making them see the funny side. Everything seemed to be going in slow motion.

Me – “Two really unattractive ladies… one of which is carrying a bit of extra weight.” I pointed at the biggest bloke. He had a big gut.

They burst into laughter. It was sweet music to my ears.

One bikie (through laughter) – “Fu#k me Felon, I can’t believe he called you a lady. THAT’S A FIRST!” He was struggling to get the words out.

FelonAnd you a fat fu#king lady!” They laughed hard.

I urinated (all the while thinking I can’t believe he’s called Felon), washed my hands and left, while they still laughed loudly inside.

As the door shut behind me, another bikie approached. Not as big, but equally as scary.

New, equally as scary bikie – “What’s fu#kin’ goin’ on in there?

Me – “Felon’s just having a bit of a laugh.

New, equally as scary bikie Felon’s laughing at something you said? Well fu#k me.

I made my way back to my table and my very much out-of-place work friends. I sat down quietly. Ten minutes later Felon sent over a schooner and a whiskey shot.

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


Here’s one of the more hilarious things I can remember seeing.

About 20 years ago, eight of us lads were at an Eastern Suburbs bowling club. We had been there since midday, bowling for a while but mainly drinking ridiculously heavily. We had the place to ourselves all day, however as evening approached there was some sort of “barefoot night-time bowls” action, so it slowly became busier and busier.

Anyway, at about 8:00 pm, a MASSIVE storm blew over. And I mean massive! Thunder, lightning, bucketing rain, the works. We along with about 60 or so other bowlers, all rushed into the clubhouse to get out of the squall. However, our mate Mac (keep in mind we’d been drinking heavily since midday) was too out-of-it to budge. He was in the bad place of over-intoxication and could not move (or be moved) off the bench.

Mac, back then, was 112kg, 6 foot 4, commando in the army, so we physically could not move him. Not in our state anyway. So we had to leave him sitting out in the perfect storm. We stood around with old bowlers, with our beers and watched and laughed at our friend out there, unmoving as wind and rain lashed him.

While keeping an eye through the window on Mac (being responsible 25-year-olds at the time), we made our plans to relocate to a slightly more lads-on-the-piss type bar, when finally, after what must have been an hour sitting in the soaking tempest, Mac suddenly sprang to life.

For whatever reason, he got his second wind and amazingly he wandered into the bowling club without stumbling or anything.

He looked like he’d just stepped out of a pool. As EVERYBODY in the place had been laughing at Mac on a bench in a hurricane, he get a rousing round of applause. He was wet, embarrassed and intoxicated.

Mac spotted us standing just off to the side of the only pool table. He wondered over, looked ridiculous, but relatively with-it. He approached me.

Me – “Mac, you’re alive! It’s your f##king shot mate. Hurry up! We’ve been waiting long enough. It’s your shot! We’re on bigs.

Now Mac after his sleep, was feeling quite spritely and in control of his senses.

All 6”4”, 112kg of Mac leaving puddles wherever he stopped, spied our opponents in the pool game. Two ten-year-old boys.

There’s only one pool cue in the place and it’s old, bent and rough. Mac, feeling better and better, wandered over and confidently plucked the cue out of the overweight ten-year-old’s hands. With a look of complete disdain for the kid, Mac leaned over, water running off his chin and onto the table, and somehow managed to sink the purple twelve. The right ball even.

This success, went straight to Mac’s head. He’d been feeling terrible, sitting in a typhoon, while dozens of people sniggered at him. He had gone, in just a few short moments, from the laughing stock of the establishment, to the kick-arse pool shark, who’d just shown them all! The sky was now the limit for Mac. He had his dignity back.

Going a bit over the top with his one-ball success, Mac raised the cue above his head and did a mocking dance in front of the pudgy little kid. He chanted loud and proud, like he’d just won a Grand Final.


The child just looked up at the massive man. His face had a mixture of fear, surprise and… well more fear. The kid’s mother then bustled up to Mac. She came up to about his navel. She was VERY angry.

Mother – “WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING YOU BIG DUFUS? WHY DON’T YOU GO BACK AND SIT ON YOUR BENCH YOU… MORON.” She slapped the cue out of his hands. It bounced on the carpeted floor.

Now Mac even in his inebriated mind knew that his mocking dance and mocking words, had possibly been out of line when playing a child. And he definitely did see fear in the ten-year-olds eyes when he discoed in front of him, but come on! That’s what playing pool when you’re out with the lads is all about. He considered telling the mother that it’s just part of the game, to lighten up a little, but she looked really mad so he didn’t.

Mac wandered back to us lads and we were in hysterics. I personally can’t ever remember laughing louder or longer.

Mac – “Jeez the mum’s a bit touchy.

More laughter.

Me – “Mac (I put a hand on his shoulder) we weren’t actually playing (a lot more laughter).”

He froze. It dawned on him. His jaw dropped. We weren’t actually playing. He’s rocked up to this little ten-year-old who’s having a quiet game of pool with his brother, plucked the cue out of his chubby little hands, sunk one of his balls and had done a teasing “in your face” dance, right in front of the terrified kid. No wonder his mum slapped the cue out of his hands.

Mac then stumbled over to the mother, his new-found sobriety having been torn from him and tried to shout them another game of pool.

Mother – “Keep away from my children”.

We laughed. Mac dripped.

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.


My wife and I were enjoying a great impromptu dinner, with our amigos, Carol and Johnny “Spiderman” (we all call him by this self-ascribed poker call sign).

Me – “I need to raise an important topic.”

Spiderman – “Oh, here we go, a Cool Hand tangent (most my mates call me by my self-ascribed poker call sign). This won’t be important, it’ll be shit.”

Carol – “Quiet Johnny. This sounds important.” She slapped her husband gently on the back of the head. “Yes Jase, we’re listening.”

Me – “I was driving through Hornswood and I had to stop for road works. I sat in my car, at the front of the cue and I was immediately saddened… no, more than that, I was gutted. And then I was outraged!”

Spiderman – Yeeees.”

Me – “I realized at that moment that we’d lost an icon, like Polly Waffles, throwdowns and the Tassie Tiger, that’s gone forever. The person operating the stop-sign, was an attractive young woman, wearing a figure-hugging, flouro safety vest!”

Isabel (my lovely wife) – “You pervert.”

Me – “My question is, where have the old stop-signer guys gone?? WHERE?? It’s been a tradition for, oh I don’t know, about the last 150 years, that the stop-signers were always the grumpy old guys who looked like the lovechild of Willie Nelson and a dirty version of Charles Bronson. The blokes with unshaven faces, long greasy grey hair, with a used-to-be-white hard hat, perched on top.”

Spiderman – “Another beer?”

Me – “Where have they gone?? The old blokes, who, stop-sign in hand, used to stare intimidatingly at Hornswood dads snuggled in their BMW’s or Audi’s on their way to work. The dads didn’t dare eyeball, but just waited patiently because the stop-signers had no doubt once kicked a man to death in a bar fight.”

I sipped my drink. “Hornswood dads didn’t dare drive off too early, while waiting for the sign to be turned, and they didn’t ever get any reaction when they give a thank you wave to the hardened stop-signer. They instantly regretted emasculating themselves by waving.

Where have they gone?? The wolf-whistling, wife-perving, swearing, punting, old dude. The skinny, wizened, sign-leaning, craggy old lads with the Tom Cruise reflecto sunnies who have been working the roads since 1976. The ones who have gained enough seniority to not have to dig, pat down molten tar, or get down and dirty in a hole. Where have they gone??”

Spiderman – “I’m ready for another beer. Your shout Cool Hand.”

Me – “The blokes with the rotten teeth and the ingrained dirtiness which is a badge of honour, only earned from working years in he sun and tar-fumes, while smoking 30 ciggies every day. The old stop-signers, who hold the sign as solid as a rock, in any weather, at any time of night or day and in any part of the city. Typhoon, stifling heat, torrential rain, snow, they don’t care, they just work the sign. The last true bastions of manhood. They are the stop-signers.

And what have they been replaced with?? Buxom, attractive, Irish backpackers!”

Isabel – “Pervert.”

Me – “It’s not like the crusty old blokes can walk into a new job at Maccas selling thick shakes. Any big accounting firms going to ship these guys in to start running their audits? Some of those flashy merchant bankers looking for a few more support staff? Unlikely.”

Spiderman – “YOUR SHOUT!”

Me – “The old stop signers need to eat you know! They need to pay rent and buy a shit-load of fuel! They need to finance a pack and a half a day and 6-8 schooners after work!”

Spiderman – “Cool Hand wouldn’t shout if a shark bit him.” 

Me – “It used to be when a Hornswood dad pulled up next to a hardened old stop-signer, he could fart and check in his rearview mirror that he doesn’t have any boogers. Now there’s “Miss Dublin” standing right next to their window, busily checking her text messages while loosely flopping her sign all over the place, Hornswood dads are heading into their offices with potentially boogery noses and full of wind.

Where have the old stop signers gone?  Somebody knows. SOMEBODY KNOWS!” I sighed and looked down at the table.

92c27b55bf943c57064d2966c0ed8718 Not how a flouro-vest is meant to look.

Carol – “You were right Johnny, that really was total shit.”

It’d be REALLY awesome if you left a comment on my blog, Share via the Facebook button below, or just give the Facebook post a thumbs up. Check out my new writing business, which allows me to now claim I am in fact, a professional writer ( Cheers.