Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Whatsaname, Marg. or Barb?

Love is in the air.
A midnight skinny dip.


Frederick and Mabel
( Linda Ronstadt and Rex Smith actually )

Poor wandering one.


February 1960 or thereabouts.
Never at any time did one suggest to their partner that the sand hills were a great place to visit for the purpose of horizontal folk dancing. Many a young lady was invited to see the crashed helicopter, the buried treasure chest, to help find the golden rivet and was promised a look through the magic porthole. Just one dollar for every sprog conceived amongst the spinifex would keep one in drinking money for yonks. Even I became a great pretender, occasionally escorting members of the opposite sex to familiarise them with all the historical sandy sights of great significance. And what did I mostly end up with? Lots of sand in large quantities stuck in and on body parts that were to me areas of great historical significance.........ouch!!
I had to wait another 10 months to hit a home run after this caper though.

Her name I think was Margaret or maybe it was Barbara, all I know she was Dianne’s closest friend,
Dianne told me late one night while in the La Fiesta, that Marg or Barb lived close by and just around the bend.
She evidently noticed me in the shop and on the beach, she quickly came to feel she liked me lots,
Her feelings for me grew and grew and new heights they did reach and later on transformed into the hots
Twas Friday night and past eleven, it said so on the clock
Next door the movies were all over, the crowds began to flock
I was sitting in the La Fiesta, a coffee I'd just bought
When in came Di, not on her own, but with a real good sort
Whilst seated at another table Diane's mate was blushing
Di then came and sat by me and started my blood rushing
She told me things about her friend designed to titillate
She wanted Di to introduce us and didn't want to wait
Her good friend's name was Marg or Barb, my memory's so profane
She told Diane, if I was Tarzan, she'd love to be my Jane
The thought of that was quite amusing, my laughter made me wheeze
Marg and I both cuddling close, while swinging through the trees
With me explaining how to swing to keep things safe and fine
By telling her, "No! not with that, grab the bloody vine"
"Why don't you walk her home," Di asked with a sly wink and a smile,
“You can go the long way through the dunes, it’s all about a mile.”
Despite my inexperience I did not need no urgin’
My adrenalin was pumping although still a teenage virgin.
We set out from the coffee shop all starry eyed and shy,
Receiving lots of knowing looks from many passers by.
Her head was on my shoulder as we walked on holding hands
Drawing ever closer to the Spinifex and sands.
“Did you know,” I asked, “that pirates roamed these parts,
Hiding buried treasure and breaking female hearts?”
Her answer to my question caused a swelling in my pants
“You be Fred and I’ll be Mabel, the sandy hills Penzance.”
What pleased me most was not the fact she knew the operetta,
She made it clear while I was here, to do much more than pet her.
The story of the pirates chest had not flipped or flopped her
Nor golden rivets, magic portholes or that crashed helicopter
No Pirate King to guide me through, in case I was not able
I played the role of pirate Frederick and she his girlfriend Mabel
Side by side we settled down after all the play and prancing,
For a horizontal pas de deus that involved folksy dancing.
Sullivan and Gilbert would be spinning round and round
Whilst lying in their coffins buried in the ground
They must be wondering what had happened to Mabel and her Fred
Attempting to make love in sand, and not at home in bed
I was not too sure just what to do, or how to go about it
I didn't have a book with pics, so I went ahead without it
Determined I'd become to prove, I wasn't just a flop
Although my skills could be scratched on back, of a soft drink bottle top
Being highly independent, I tried it on my own
I thought I’d hit a bullseye and I waited for her groan.
I once was told enjoy your first and disregard your fears,
It doesn’t matter where it goes, just hope it disappears.
I asked her in a whisper, if things were properly put
She shook her head, then softly said, “You missed me by a foot”
The Spinifex around us, rustled and it shook,
The Phantom shadows were all there, keen to have a look.
What was happening in her mind, would have to stay untold
But horizontal dancing was sadly put on hold.
She led the way all down the slope and off into the surf,
Her naked beauty lit by moonlight made it all the worth.
My one night stand had been destroyed by prying pervert eyes
But a skinny dip with Marg or Barb kept things on the rise.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Grumble bumming.

Love your life and cease to frown,
Don’t let the bastards get you down.
Hold head up high, remain erect,
And never politically correct.

What follows is merely one long bitch regarding the ills that have befallen our misguided society.


Modern day living should be easy, lay back, trouble free and one would think relatively cheaper as technology makes possible for up to date techniques to be adopted and used on a daily basis. However, it seems as though the average member of society today simply accepts and adopts any new innovative invention regardless of whether it is actually a necessary product or not. One example is the mobile phone, or cell phone as our American cousins call them. Many of our younger citizens more than likely are not aware that not that long ago, telephones were only used by folks to telephone each other. Today, the mobile is used for keeping in touch, sending SMS’s, E-Mails, texting, taking photographs, activating home air-cons from the office and may also be used to download info from the computer. Some mobiles can even be prompted by vending machines to purchase their products.

It won’t be too long before a dunny safe model is manufactured and becomes a must have item for replacing toilet paper…..don’t laugh I’m serious. Also what is it with all these ignorant specimens on trains and buses, in the theatre, waiting in bank queues, wandering along footpaths and to top it all off in their motor vehicles, which I hasten to add is illegal, rabbiting on to heaven knows who on their mobile. For God’s sake people, get a life, you are so extremely rude and annoying and I’m willing to bet that your conversations are completely and utterly meaningless to boot.
A mob of Wankers.

Back in the late 60’s and early 70’s there was talk of computers being used in the office to ease the workload by reducing working hours and cutting down on all the paperwork. We were told that a computer could do the work of 5 persons and office life would become a home away from home. The reality was that when these modern day miracles became an essential part of the average work place, they were capable of doing the work of 5 persons but, in reality, were expected to do the work of 10 to 12. 
At work..........
...........and at home.

The average office worker’s 35 hour week has become a 50 to 55 hour week with no increase in pay and the paperwork has more than doubled. I remember applying for my annual leave on computer and also manually. Using the computer took 15 minutes, whilst the manual application took 90 seconds. Even on the eve of a public holiday staff were expected to remain in the office for as long as it took to finish the day’s work. One Xmas eve, office staff were unable to leave until around 8:30pm. No overtime was paid as it was not company policy. All this was brought about by not having a backup system in place when the weekly computer crash occurred. The staff were vitriolic with their opinions of the situation, but were too afraid to openly say anything as they didn’t want to cause trouble. Any wonder I opted for early retirement when the opportunity arose.

My wife Gabi and I were extremely fortunate to have moved to greener pastures north of Sydney, in doing so we were able to avoid those rip off toll roads that the state government keeps on inflicting upon motorists, as if they are not already being overcharged by all and sundry. On my frequent trips to Sydney, I refuse point blank to drive on or through these motorways and tunnels. If only my fellow motorists would do the same, the tolls would vanish within only a few months of organized anarchy. Years ago in Bananaland motorists refused to drive on a newly constructed tollway and despite repeated efforts on the part of the state government to thwart them, they were successful in having the tolls removed in only a few short months. There is no reason why this tactic would not work in Sydney today, but will people do it, I doubt it, they are all sheep. They seem content to allow these road builders to have access to their bank accounts to deduct the tolls and charges, not this little black duck however.

M4 Tollway.  $4.00 each way ( October 2012) ensures a trouble free trip....Yeah sure!  Stuff the lot of them.

How will the government pay off the road builders? That's their problem, they made their bed, they can now lie in it. Come on people, show some intestinal fortitude and ensure these tolls become nothing more than ancient history.
At time of writing I am not aware of the percentage of people who own and use a home computer, but going on the figures for the year 2000 I would imagine it would be around 75 %, with half of those on the internet. I held off for many years, but now that I am connected to the WWW, I have become aware of the advantages of computer ownership, but do not regard it as an essential part of day to day living. 

Another modern trend is for pay TV to be installed and although this has not been as popular as originally imagined, there is a reasonable sized minority who have signed  up despite nothing but garbage on offer. Many of these unfortunates appear  willing to waste good money so they can be entertained by the likes of the following........

Yes, that's right, there are those who actually pay out good money to watch quality television and what do they end up with........Frightening isn't it?

I never cease to be amused when certain families complain how difficult it is to
make ends meet when they own a home computer with Internet connection, plasma or LCD television, DVD players or recorders, Surround sound systems, Ipods etc. and all family members have their own mobiles and spend the whole day and half the evening gas bagging away to God only knows who about God only knows what. 

"We are struggling, truly."

They obviously are not aware that all these modern day wonders all cost money, the products and services are not provided gratis and more importantly they are not essential for day to day living.

Political correctness has annoyed many people, including myself, but very few appear to ignore it and actually accept it as the norm. This has been responsible for standards declining, in some cases dangerously low, when what should be happening is many past values should be retained to put an end to the polarisation of our society that certain journalists and television commentators seem to be encouraging. An excellent example of this is the promotion of Multiculturalism as the saviour of Australia, whereas in reality it is destroying our once unique nation. If the current trend is allowed to continue, Oz will end up as a divided collection of alienated tribes adhering to their old ways and customs that were responsible for them leaving the old country in the first place. As mentioned elsewhere, far too many people are crediting MCism for the successful blending together of our multi national society, whereas it is Cosmopolitanism that has achieved that.

What is it with all these misguided advocates of political correctness singing the praises of just about everyone who has arrived from overseas, many of whom as illegal immigrants? These people deliberately destroy all their papers and other documents and are responsible for massive delays in our processing system. So many of them are determined to be granted residency, yet have no intention of accepting our way of life and continue to support their former nation's laws and traditions. Our local PC cretins accuse anyone who speaks out against these wankers as racist, in order to shut them up. In doing so they are denying their own people the right to express an honest opinion and are even bigger wankers than those they are defending. I would love to know what their hidden agenda is.

Take a close look at the following photos. Have these brain dead penis pullers assimilated into our society? Are they contributing to the well being and advancement of their adopted country? Have they put the old traditions and bigotry responsible for many of their families moving to Australia in the first place, behind them?


The unwanted dregs of our society.
Islamic wanker, 1st. degree.
Multiculturalism is separate development and breeds tribes.
And these are so called indigenous Australians.

Harmony Day at Carlingford.  Aussies one and all. Different tastes, different traditions, different faiths, yet united by their love and respect for their adopted new nation. It beats separate development any time.
Footy fans. 'Carn the Doggies.' Harmony at Olympic Park Sydney.  "ALLAHU AKBAR"
           Surely the above would have to be a nomination for Photo of the year. 

Over the years our own society appears to have allowed certain phenomena to creep into modern day living. Take the entertainment industry for instance, I discovered on a singer’s web site where this so called artist sold 200,000 copies and was awarded a gold and platinum record because of this achievement. Further research showed that in reality there were only 3000 copies sold over the counter…..what a joke. Another artist’s only claim to fame is a number five chart position, yet a nomination to be installed in The Aria Hall of Fame was forthcoming….incredible. Not that long ago a well known artist was credited with having the largest selling single and won the award for such despite another artist selling over 100,000 more Cd’s over the counter. Obviously politics today dictate popularity and not retail sales as happened in the past. When it comes to live performances, most of the current crop of impostors, such as Britney, Madonna, Timberlake and everyone of those talent less so called rappers would have been laughed off stage years ago, that is if they were ever able to be offered a gig in the first place.

Pure unadulterated low talented crap.
Their singing ability is such that very few of them ever sing live and rely on lip syncing and some of them cannot even do that properly. If it wasn’t for their backing groups and laser light shows with added fireworks, they simply would not attract an audience. 

Big on special effects, extremely small on talent.

Even with all this, I am not able to comprehend how anyone with only a modicum of intelligence would attend their rip off concerts. If one has doubts about the acceptance of mediocrity as quality, look no further than the entertainment industry.
Many overseas television programmes are inflicted on us on a regular basis, but even though many of them die sudden deaths due to crappy plots and storylines, the acting generally speaking is quite acceptable. The same cannot be said about good old Aussie local drama, that in all fairness, has improved somewhat since the days of Skippy, but if one views an episode of the Waratah Park legend, one would expect a vast improvement. Generally speaking local shows tend to bomb out because of atrocious acting and amateurish story lines, with occasionaly the odd genuine success. However certain shows are regarded as being top local drama and according to the broadcasters are rating successes, despite the number one show coming in at around number 49 in the top 100.

The home of mind boggling excrement.

One of the most watched local dramas is a naval adventure set in our northern regions and situations depicted are sheer fantasy. Even the Navy has laughed its head off at the ridiculous plots. Despite having one of Australia’s better female actresses in a lead role, some of the other actors make the cast of Neighbours look almost talented. The bloke playing the ship’s captain acts as though he is playing the role of a tree stump and even makes Brian Brown appear animated. 

HMAS Hammersley....
....it's crew....
.....and its Captain.
Regardless, the viewers appear to find it acceptable entertainment, although I am certain it will go the way of previous so called top rating programmes and vanish from our screens before too long……one can only hope. 

Should be brown.
The most ridiculous get together is the alcohol sodden annual Logies Awards that are hosted by the Nine Network and take place within a dodgy, gin soaked gambling palace in the southern capital.

Every year the usual suspects are nominated by a little read TV rag and advertising campaigns start hassling people to vote for their ‘most popular TV personality.’ In the majority of cases the nominees are, to say the least, mediocre, but every now and then someone almost worthwhile gets the nod. I have never understood how so many Logies for most popular this and that are won by personalities whose programmes do not even rate in the top 100. If no one is watching, how can the show’s star or host win a most popular award, yet it happens year after year. In my opinion the Logies are an absolute farce and should be abolished and banished from our airwaves for good.

As for sport, why does Seven and Ten persevere in NSW and QLD televising the most ridiculous of all the football codes, namely the AFL. The southerners may love and support it, but in the two north eastern states it is widely regarded as an effeminate game and only has a small cult following and its TV ratings are virtually non existent. Yet night after night during the news bulletins we keep on hearing how some unknown has broke down at training or some other mug has damaged his left testicle and may also require a penis transplant……Who cares! For God's sake, no other nation is even remotely interested in AFL, so why not leave the easily pleased southerners to play with themselves, which for anyone into cross country basketball, would be highly appropriate. 

Typical AFL football. Wow! a double header. Hawks v Bulldogs and Magpies v Carlton.

Rugby League football.
Years ago Rugby Union was an amateur game mostly supported by the old school tie brigade. Nowadays it’s difficult to tell the difference between Union and League since the old school tie went professional and started poaching some of Leagues finest. Most of the players in both codes have unpronounceable names and appear to have snuck in via New Zealand from the Pacific Islands. I am curious how many of these oversize islanders are here legally?

While there are still many worthwhile citizens who contribute to our society, there has been an increase in booze related violence. Why anyone needs to enter a pub and have a beer at 5am. I’ll never understand, but the liquor industry continues to push for pubs to open 24 hours a day……give us a break. Blues break out, knives are drawn, sometimes guns and glasses and bottles are broken and used as weapons. Years ago, one’s own mates would beat the crap out of anyone who produced a knife, let alone a broken glass to be shoved in someone’s face.

Recently there have been two incidents of gutless wonders glassing their girlfriends face and in both cases the girls continue to express their love for their brain dead boyfriends, one even went to court to have an AVO removed that had been placed on the boyfriend by the police for her protection…..she should be institutionalised. Thirty hoons invade a private party in a suburban house and get violent when refused admission. The householder uses a whip to drive off these heroic cretins and then is threatened to be charged with assault for using excessive force. Years ago he would have received a bravery award. Another piece of garbage shoves a broken bottle in a teenagers face almost killing him. He is found guilty and it is revealed he is addicted to cocaine, heroin, smokes marijuana and uses several other illegal drugs. The Judge then announces that this piece of filth is a “person of excellent character” and the sentence looks as though he will be out and about in around 9 months.

I become almost ropable when I read or hear of someone found guilty of using excessive force, particularly when the guilty person has been protecting his family or property. A statement is usually forthcoming from the judge that the accused was guilty of using more than reasonable force, without ever stating what constitutes reasonable force. What is the reasonable amount of force required to subdue a 14 year old schoolboy armed with a knife, compared to the reasonable amount of force required to subdue a six foot eight inch tall Pacific islander weighing in at around 120 kilos unarmed? In one case it could simply be a well applied headlock, but in the other it would most certainly require the use of a baseball bat to be on even terms with the law breaker. 

The greatest threat to our modern day society is lack of responsibility, brought about by mind boggling wishy washy law enforcement, or in some cases no law enforcement at all. Criminals and hoons know that they will virtually get off scot free and continue to offend. Tackle a thief who has snatched an elderly ladies handbag and slightly injure the sleazebag and he has the right to sue you. In Britain a young girl fighting off a would be rapist blinds him in one eye and is successfully sued for $220,000 from his prison cell. The law states that it is an offence for a woman to carry in her handbag an aerosol hairspray that may be used as a protection from harassment or attack. Crack a home invader’s skull with a baseball bat and you will be charged with using an offensive weapon and he will more than likely escape with a good behaviour bond or less. Give me a break.
There are many, many more mind boggling irritations that have crept into our busy lives throughout the years and this tale of woe could go on indefinitely, so I will end it with one final bitch…….barking dogs. 

The problem.

A possible solution.

Owners who are at home when their useless mutt continually barks should be fined heavily and even jailed. Many barking dogs go berserk at all times of the day, night and early mornings when the owners are out for the evening or whenever. Why oh why don’t the neighbours do something about the problem? A bucket of water or maybe a house brick may do the trick, but no, the dog continues to bark and bark and the neighbours continue to fume. The usual response when questioned on their inaction is, “Oh we don’t want to upset the dog owners.” My usual response is “Fuck 'em.” Councils will not act unless a letter is received listing days, nights and times of barking offences and then, if you’re lucky a ranger will speak to the owner, if he is at home in business hours. What follows afterwards is not a lot. In most cases the dog continues to bark at all hours and after further written complaints the whole process repeats itself with no result forthcoming. If one person only complains about a crowing rooster, the owner has 2 weeks to get rid of it, which usually means a wrung neck or the axe. Why can’t the same rule apply to ignorant dog owners and their dumb dish licker.

What a strange society we have evolved into. Although unable to leave this mortal coil, I have no choice but to refuse acceptance of this crap from anyone and will resist up until the day I die and despite all the above will attempt to retain my warped sense of humour, which at times can be sorely tested by the greatest of all society’s problems, the dreaded political correctness……….Oh well! It’s just gone pumpkin time, I’m off to bed. 

Nighty Night.

The Good Life.

The infamous 190 ......1959 - 64

The first set of wheels. 1964

Tunnel Vision

During the 1960's what a dead set dull and boring person I was all throughout the working week. I would arrive home from work between 4:30pm and 5:30pm, shower, change into my pyjamas and spend the whole evening through until around midnight in front of the television, then off to bed. Except for surf boat training twice a week, I would hardly leave the house to go anywhere apart from the odd movie at the local cinema once in a blue moon. One thought and one thought only was constantly on my mind and that was of the upcoming weekend and what it may bring. My whole life revolved around the Avalon Beach SLSC which had been responsible for a change in my attitude and set me on the path that eventually made a half decent human being of me. The surf club was not a weekend past time, but a full on way of life, that at times required the acceptance of some discipline whilst rocking ones socks off and having an absolute ball.

The Newport Arms Beer Garden ( Now, not then )

Every weekend throughout summer and winter I would be seen either in or around the surf club building, or on the beach and/or in the surf on my Malibu and surf ski. It was not uncommon for me to be sighted enjoying the odd beer in the upstairs lounge of the local RSL along with fellow boat crew members. Another popular watering hole was the Newport Arms Hotel's landscaped beer garden, although our mob would take over the steps at the pub's north eastern corner. The photo above is how it looks today, whereas in the 60's things were a bit more basic, but back then no one cared. The surfing season began on the first weekend in October and ended on Easter Monday, which could be as early as the last weekend in March, or as late as the 3rd weekend in April. All of our active members had approximately 12 patrols a year to complete and despite the average member having to gravitate to the beach from various suburbs south west of Sydney Harbour, the absentee rate was extremely low. In spite of the copious quantities of amber fluid consumed by the average clubbie, patrols were always taken seriously and were carried out with the SLSA's motto, Vigilance and Service to the fore. Many a beachgoer owes his or her well being to some of the guys I had more than just the odd beer with at numerous watering holes on a regular basis.

The Bondi mob doing their thing.......gratis.

A considerable amount of time was spent at the local coffee shop, the extremely well appointed La Fiesta. The long suffering Terry saw to it that we were always well fed with excellent service thrown in for good measure. I would like a dollar for every cappucino I downed in the comfortable surrounds of the La Fiesta. I quite often would have breakfast, lunch and dinner there and found the food first rate and reasonably priced. All that being said, I became one of the first club members to start using the club's kitchen facilities by preparing and cooking my own tucker. This saved me money, most of which was spent on the purchase and consumption of more ales and lagers. I very quickly got on side with the club caretaker, the legendary old fart, Harry, friggin' Harry, who was only too happy to share his milk and sugar etc. with me and I reciprocated by keeping him supplied with freshly caught fish.
I would paddle out on my surf ski until the Whale Beach headland began to appear from behind the North Avalon headland and then line up the surf club's flagpole with the RSL's in the background. This positioned one directly over a small reef and almost immediately the pickers would start pecking away at the bait. Not once did I return to the beach without at least two or more fish. The most common catch were sweep, but one was always ensured of bringing home the odd red bream, or even a decent size schnapper and the occasional flathead. On choppy days the ski was very hard to maintain ones balance on without having your feet dangling in the water and considering one was around 500 metres off shore, this tended to make one a tasty morsel for any bronze whaler or white pointer passing by looking for a quick snack. The solution was to place an 8 foot length of floor board across the ski pressed up against the foot strap chocks and held in position by ones feet. This acted as a more than satisfactory outrigger and worked a treat in stabilising the craft, although any protection from being a sharks lunch was all in the mind.
There were weekends when organized outings were arranged, functions would be held either in the club house or elsewhere, invitations to parties and/or soirees were forthcoming, the odd trip away would occur, there were surf carnivals to attend and compete at, but generally speaking most members would just hang out together using the club or RSL as home base. A typical weekend for me went as follows..........
Arrive at work on Friday morning with my large overnight bag full of clothing and lots of red meat. Leave work at 5 pm and commence the one hour drive north to Avalon. How good it was to have my own vehicle at last. Around 6pm I would arrive at the club and load up my locker with clothing and the milk bar fridge in the kitchen with the meat etc. and then wait for my other partners in crime to arrive. The bulk of the larrikins would have arrived by 7pm and two carloads would descend on either the Newport Arms or the Mona Vale pub for a few quiet beers. After 10pm we would all adjourn to the games room of the Avalon RSL and drink until 1am, demonstrating what lousy pool and snooker players we were along the way. If it was a fine, mild evening I would tend to sleep on the club's front verandah, but when we had a massive makeover of the bunkhouse, I found myself spending more time in my upper bunk. The next morning we would all shake off the cobwebs with an early morning dip, then over to the La Fiesta for breakfast, although I got into the habit of cooking my own in the kitchen. An hour or so later I would have the odd wave on my mal, surf permitting, or else go for a paddle on my ski.
Saturday afternoon would be spent on patrol from 1pm to 5pm if rostered, if not the Newport beer garden would be honoured with our presence and the remainder of the day would be spent downing considerable quantities of Resch's.......It was a hard life. The evening was usually spent at the Mona Vale pub in the company of some of the local girls who enjoyed the odd drink and did not mind our company, providing we were still capable of spelling our own names. Afterwards, you guessed it, off to the Rissole for pool and snooker.

Banff Lodge and Bonfires

Sundays were always rest days as one was in dire need of sleep and rest away from the amber fluid. If one was not rostered on patrol, the day would be spent dozing on the verandah vowing never to drink again. Quite often some of our local young ladies would join us and many a pleasant few hours would be spent sleepily chatting away without really saying anything of any note. At 5pm the afternoon patrol would sign off and the boat crew would then open the Surf club Bar. This weekly session was known as QY's and would end at 7pm. QY's evolved into quite a semi sophisticated gathering of members, wives, partners and friends. It became a family get together with ankle biters darting all over the place like whirling dervishes. At 7pm after the hoards had departed, the boaties would wash the glasses, wipe over the tables and store away the furniture, then settle down for a few quiet sherbets before leaving for home at the end of a very enjoyable weekend. I tended to be the last one to leave as I simply did not want the weekend to end. Generally speaking I would leave around 9pm, but there were many occasions when it was well after 10:30pm. My latest departure was 11:10pm one Sunday night.
The old surf club house was going to rack and ruin, so we took it upon ourselves to carry out some refurbishments at our own expense. There were extensive renovations carried out at great expense and we ended up with what became our winter headquarters. One weekend a truck arrived from some council tip and dropped off several old lounge suites that were placed in the club house room, home made wooden moose heads suddenly appeared on the walls, electric radiators were mysteriously installed, the walls received a coat of paint and a rustic sign with the carved words 'Banff Lodge' took pride of place over the western entrance to our now cosy winter retreat. The Canadian sign was unknowingly donated by North American actor Ty Hardin of 'Bronco' fame, who at the time was living in Bilgola.
The total cost of the renovations was somewhere in the vicinity of 25 dollars or thereabouts.....Backyard Blitz, eat your heart out. We decided to have a house warming party in the now newly named 'Banff Lodge' and were expecting around 18 to 20 to attend. By 8pm over 50 had arrived and by 9pm well over 100 ragers were doing their thing. The night went off with a bang, but absolutely no trouble was forthcoming despite the occasional use of waccy baccy. There were a few more similar gatherings in the lodge, but mostly it was put to good use as a retreat for all of us hung over inebriates to retire to and enjoy the serenity and solitude. We would quite often build a large bonfire at the rear of the club and literally sing songs around the campfire at night after a barbecue. John Towner would provide the music on his steel guitar with me playing the six chords I knew on my ukelele as rhythm. Our pleasures were simple, but it was a marvellous way to spend a relaxing evening with good company and witty conversation. Every now and then complete strangers would be attracted by the bonfire and would come over from the village and join in the community singing. At the time I took all this for granted. What I would give to be granted the opportunity to do it all over again..........Ahhhh! Memories.

Those were the days

Rowing, Paddling and Dreaming of Jeannies

As stated earlier there would be the odd organized outing,but this was usually the exception to the general rule. The most common was having to attend and compete at an open surf carnival, usually on a Saturday. The Avalon boat crew would compete at all the open carnivals and would load the boat with various associated equipment required by our water event competitors and R&R Team and deliver it to its destination which could be from Palm Beach in the north to Garie Beach in the south. It was common for the boaties to leave early on a Saturday morning and not return until after sunset that evening. During the course of a State or Regional carnival that covered two days, we would all sleep over, mostly on the beach. An example was at either the Metropolitan or State Championships held at Coogee in 1965, we spent Saturday night sleeping on Bondi Beach. Every now and then word would pass along the local grapevine of a party worthwhile attending and even if not invited, many people would turn up expecting to be admitted. I have no recollection of any serious trouble raising its ugly head when anyone was refused entry to a party. More often than not uninvited gate crashers were admitted and caused no trouble and were appreciative. The ones who missed out simply wandered off into the darkness and were never seen again.

Knickers and Snickers

A popular function was the old fashioned smoko or bucks night which always attracted many of the former active members whose behaviour made some of us younger blokes appear almost well behaved. The catering was fairly basic and consisted of large quantities of hot and cold finger food with at least 36 gallons of beer to wash it all down. At the functions end there was nearly always a 9 gallon keg left untapped and this was kept safe and sound ready to be consumed as breakfast. Eight or nine gluttons for punishment would chip in 10 bob and the keg would be tapped in the old club house, usually around 7am and in no short time would become a dead one.
The club's theme nights would attract a cross section of members and locals and were always well patronized. We were fortunate to have a well maintained modern looking building to be able to run these popular functions which always doubled as excellent money raisers. There would be Roman nights, Monte Carlo nights, Come as your favourite actor, but the favourite was always the Middle East theme. I don't know why that was, maybe the girls liked wearing outfits that showed their Knickers and briefs. The women folk loved to dress up and some of their outfits quite often raised more than just a few eyebrows. In the actual Middle East, they probably would have all been stoned to death. The sight of so many belly dancers in their see through outfits all attempting to impersonate Barbara Eden's Jeannie was something that turned many a head and created comment.
The amazing thing was that each and every weekend one would see the local sunbaked cuties wandering around wearing next to nothing and simply took it all in ones stride, yet at the surf club's annual ball, ones tongue would unravel all the way to the floor at the sight of the same cuties dressed in evening gowns that covered up all the interesting parts.


Damo at North Avalon on recue board


Spending the weekend at the club became so popular that the small bunkhouse and the much larger change room had to be swapped around to accomodate the two dozen or so members who were sleeping over on a regular basis. The new bunkhouse could sleep three dozen people and quite often did. Even over the winter months at least twelve members would take advantage of the facilities. Over these colder months we would spend more time in the newly decorated 'Banff Lodge' than in the actual club house, which made Harry the caretakers job much easier. As mentioned earlier many functions were held in our second clubhouse and one of the local girls insisted on having her 18th birthday party in it. What a great place it was to flop in straight from the surf and the sight of many shapely bikini clad bodies wandering through on a regular basis kept ones juices flowing, so to speak. Every now and then over winter one would be on ones Pat Malone when no one would bother to visit the club. One would spend the weekend loafing around on the verandah simply taking in the scenery and listening to the sounds of the surf rolling in. How lucky was one to have what more or less amounted to ones own holiday resort smack bang on the beach available free of charge. Even when there was nothing to do, one could always entertain ones self by simply doing nothing.

What has been revealed previous is only a scratch on the surface, but should indicate why my thoughts always were of the following weekend and what it may produce. Talk about tunnel vision, nothing on either side existed only what was at the tunnels end. From 1959 through until mid 1972 my whole life was governed by events that took place in and around a little hamlet 24 miles north of the Sydney CBD. From 1990 until 1998 another 8 years was spent as an active reserve member and as I write another period has begun with me becoming a long service member. When something gets into ones blood, that thing can become a part of you. Religious, Political and ones general view of life may change over the decades, but a feeling that one has for a unique and wonderful way of life remains constant and the memories of that way of life will never be forgotten or discarded regardless of where fate decrees ones geographic location to be.

So What's This Blog About, You Ask?

Click on Here to see the Annandale to Anarchy Statement of Intent. Politically Correct and Easily Offended Types needn't apply.