28. Peter the Younger gets up.

“Give a man a mask and he will show you his true face.”
Oscar Wilde, before social media and trolling came along.

1. It was bitterly cold for much of the day and it was a marvel that Mr B turned up with his bronchitis, now downgraded more realistically to a chest cold. Mind you, Mr B says his cold would have killed most men, so thanks for coming today, Mr B. Or, more accurately, thanks for bringing the chairs.

There had been a rumour that part-time actor Steve Maxwell had been overseas auditioning to be the next James Bond, but it turns out he really was having an eye operation. He was back today wearing protective shades. Welcome back, Steve!

“The man who wants big family tree needs many roots,” said Helmut, quoting Confucious and ignoring Mr B’s ban on wordplay. Helmut took enquiries about the origin of the universe, and somehow or other Sir Isaac Newton became involved in the discussion. What a poor specimen of a man Sir Isaac Newton was! Thanks, Helmut, for smashing our preconceptions and bringing us back to reality.

“Steve’s future is so bright he has to wear shades.” (Apologies to Patrick Lee MacDonald.)

2. Peter the Younger read to us the following figures:
The European Union has 468 coal-fired power plants and they intend to build 27 more.
Turkey has 56 plants and they’re planning to build 93 more.
South Africa: 79, & plan to build 24 more.
India has 589 and plan 446 more.
The Philippines has 19 and plan 60 more.
South Korea has 58 and plan 26 more
Japan has 90 and plan 45 more.
China has 2,363, and plan 1171 more.

Peter’s point? Australia is planning to shut their remaining 6 plants and save the planet!!

Peter says we in Australia have made some foolish decisions.

Peter also claimed that Adolf Hitler was a socialist, and gave his reasons why.

His stint was entertaining!

3. Mr B is rewriting his bookon resilience in a different format, and has asked (begged) your scribe to include a chapter in the weekly post. He’d like feedback from his grasshoppers about the new format.

Given that his “book” is Speakers’ Corner related (resilience is his main subject, after all) your scribe reluctantly accedes to his request.

It’s a book intended for young people. If you would like to read the first chapter, click here.


4. Can an unemployed personsurvive on the Newstart Allowance (unemployment benefits)? Your scribe decided to find out.  Click here.

5. This week’s unusual critterin the Unusual Critter Series is the praying mantis, but IT IS NOT a close relation to the mantis shrimp, which is also an unusual critter. Here is a bunch of reasonswhy the mantis shrimp is one weird critter. Both critters should check out our Facebook page.

Praying mantis

Mantis shrimp (no relation)