1.Politics was the main subject discussed throughout the day by Mr B and his grasshoppers, and Mr B was all at sea.
Not literally. Figuratively.
Are we going to have one of those days when you keep misinterpreting what I write? I suggest you take a long hard look at yourself. And then ask yourself, ‘Why do I do that? Why do I persist in choosing to take the author literally? Do I get confused on purpose for some deep-seated emotional reason? Or do I simply lack concentration?’
Or is it a game for you?
Because honestly, I’m fed up with it. I make a genuine effort to recount the day’s events at Speakers’ Corner and it takes up a considerable chunk of my Sunday evening. Yet my effort doesn’t seem to interest you. You seem to be interested only in reading this blog in a perverse way, for reasons I can’t fathom. I don’t believe it’s a lack of concentration; I believe it’s something more sinister. And it’s something you had better sort out quick-smart because I’m sick of it. You’re wasting your time and more importantly, you’re wasting my time. That’s not acceptable.
Stop your shenanigans now. Wake up to yourself.
2. I sometimes wonder why I bother.
3. Tony, one of the hecklers, was in good form today. At times he was two years behind the conversation and at other times, only twenty minutes behind. That kept the rest of us on our toes and made it an enjoyable afternoon.
4. 93 year-old Arthur dropped by with his daughter Jacquie. It was Father’s Day. Arthur immediately interrupted proceedings by introducing the subject of vegetarianism. That prompted a passer-by to ask, ‘If God didn’t want us to eat animals, why did he make them out of meat?’
5. And yes, it was Father’s Day. Here is something from the PostSecret website.
6. We often criticise our politicians for moving at glacial speed, but compared to the Vatican they’re like Speedy Gonzales. For a person to become a saint they first have to die. Then someone has to pray to that dead person and ask them to speak directly to God, and request a healing miracle. If the miracle occurs it means the dead person has a lot of influence with God and must be pretty special. That’s good enough for the Vatican to make them a saint.
The trouble is, it takes a long time for the Vatican to discover these miracles. Mother Teresa was made a saint today, yet she died nineteen years ago. It has taken the Vatican that long to uncover her two miracles. (It isn’t high praise for the two miracles, is it? It’s not as though those miracles stood out, being jaw-droopingly awesome. They could not have been blockbusters, could they?)
Peter the Heckler had something to say about the canonisation of Mother Teresa:
7. Speaking of the Pope:
8. Helmut explained quantum entanglement by speaking of two electrons light years apart: one spins one way causing the other to instantaneously spin the other way. The reason why those two particular electrons made that agreement was left unclear. And how they made the agreement was also unclear.
Soon after giving his explanation, Helmut entangled quantum entanglement with theology. Huh??!
It was left to Tony to intervene and generously clear things up. Everyone present was left with a full and clear understanding of quantum mechanics. Thank you, Tony.
9. Speaking of quantum, Steve Maxwell spoke about China’s launch of a quantum satellite. And, he commented upon the Sydney Morning Herald’s article, ‘Riding the Red Dragon’ which criticised politician Sam Dastyari. (The nob who asked a Chinese company to pay one of his personal debts.)
He also spoke of ‘The Golden Rule’: do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
10. Don’t forget! This coming Sunday, September 11, a television crew will be filming in the Domain. They’re making a documentary on trolling (cyber-bullying). Author Tara Moss is the presenter. She will be speaking to the camera while we do our thing in the far background, looking like ants. We at Speakers’ Corner are to represent free speech or something. The thing is, ants are supposed to be numerous and the crew want plenty of ants about the place. If you’re considering coming to Speakers’ Corner sometime in the next thirty-five years then why not make it this Sunday and boost the numbers? From 2pm.
Besides, if you look eccentric enough (and you do, trust me) there is a small chance you might get a close-up and end up on telly.
If you’re one of the heckling pests, a good way for you to make amends for all your past transgressions would be to turn up and shut up. That way you can make Speakers’ Corner look good, make the documentary look good, and do your bit towards the fight against trolling. Turning up won’t make up for your years of pestering, but it might make up a minute.
If you are a troll, come along and give the documentary crew an insight into why you do it. (Of course, you would need insight to do that, and that’s something you probably lack.)
By the way, this scribe is happy to plug Tara’s most recent book, ‘The Fictional Woman’. The book gives an absorbing account of how women have been treated historically and how they are being treated today. It’s not a whinge, it’s an eye-opener. Easy to read and interesting.
11. Last week we mentioned that a recording device had been found on the lawn. No one has contacted this scribe to claim it. Perhaps you thought we were referring to a ‘recorder’ like the one below.
We weren’t. Let’s be clear: if you lost an electronic recording device then come to Speakers’ Corner to claim it. Mr B will have it with him.
12. Other subjects discussed today:
– Mr B recommended cuts to the ABC. For a start, he didn’t think the taxpayer should fund 12 radio stations and four television stations in Sydney.
– Heroes. When it comes to being a hero, said the speaker, it usually turns out to be a man. They’re the ones who rush into burning buildings, or open burning cars, to save occupants they don’t even know. (That it was a male trait was disputed by Peter the Heckler, who was in a disputing mood.)
– Mr B talked about the different types of happiness, and was interrupted by Arthur, who wanted to know why Mr Bashful isn’t bashful. (Who says he isn’t?)
– Religion was praised by the atheist speaker, and called ‘a wonderful thing’.
– Reasons were given why free trade should be banned immediately.
– Mr B talked about the fear he has of balloon factories and unproductive employment, and a grasshopper pointed out that perhaps our society should not focus so much on making our companies productive. A gentle form of socialism, anyone? Without the totalitarianism?
– Who leads us? Here’s what Mr B thinks:
13. None of the speakers mentioned the death of Gene Wilder, and that’s fair enough. But this scribe couldn’t help including this:
14. If you’re a cyber-bully or a troll please don’t subscribe to our Facebook page, and please ignore the archives site.