‘Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. The mediocre mind is incapable of understanding the man who refuses to bow blindly to conventional prejudices and chooses instead to express his opinions courageously and honestly.’
Albert Einstein, when asked to say a few words about Mr Bashful.
1. Helmut began the meeting and it soon became a lively affair with Mirko’s interjections.
When Mr B arrived he admitted he hadn’t prepared for the day, so would some of his grasshoppers assist by speaking? They didn’t disappoint. First up was Mirko, who was still keen to educate Helmut and the rest of us. Mirko spoke earnestly about his phonetic language, and then introduced a new topic: music. He then kindly answered questions. We learnt a great deal from him.
Mirko also mentioned that he had worked as an electrician for many years. He was asked about Ohm’s Law, and he did his best to describe it in lay terms.
He was also asked if, during his time as an electrician, he had ever been electrocuted. He said ‘Yes!’ and for some of us, that explained a lot.
2. Before the next speakertook the Ladder of Knowledge, Mr B said a few words about his own musical education. For a few years in school this poor fellow thought a tuning fork was just a classroom version of a starting gun for the kids to say, “Sing C. C B A G. Call it Doh: Doh. Doh Ray Me Far So La Te Doh.
“What the hell was that about?” Mr B wanted to know.
And to this day he still doesn’t know why his music teacher was obsessed with ‘Doh, Ray, Me, Far, So, La, Te or Doh.’ (‘Notice the ‘Doh’ repeat? It gets two mentions for some reason.) Most contemporary singers rarely use those words, though admittedly, Julie Andrews used the lot in just one song.
And in 1972 Country Radio used ‘La’ repeatedly at the end of their hit ‘Wintersong‘ but Mr B’s music teacher never mentioned the song!
Simply, he and music never got on, and he never passed the subject. However, Mr B says he was always keen to grab the tambourine, so that’s something.
A grasshopper asked Mr B to replicate her ‘La’. He did a pretty good job of it. He looked disappointed when he wasn’t asked to sing an entire song.
What is the difference between a tune and a melody?
3. The next speaker was Helmut again. Helmut has become cheery and accommodating. What’s he up to, folks? What’s he planning?
Helmut had a few words to say about music, physics and the old timers who discovered stuff. He also had to deal with a vociferous Mirko, who was still keen to explain himself.
Helmut even explained, cleverly, the link between physics and love.
4. Mr B then told a jokebefore giving up the Ladder to the next speaker, Mark the Grinner.
5. Mark the Grinner spokeabout the banks and it’s fair to say he is not enamoured with them. He read out the Banking and Finance Oath of 2012 and had trouble reconciling the oath with the antics recently revealed in the Banking Royal Commission.
It’s also fair to say that Mark is not always 100% politically correct when he admonishes a listener for having the temerity to ask an awkward question. Entertaining though.
6. Mr B read a poem.
7. Other subjects discussed:
– Steve Maxwell spoke about the upcoming NSW state election. (Yes, there is one!) And, he spoke about politics in general.
– Mark the Grinner said psychotropic drugs are not addictive, and he explained why the elderly are the biggest users of them. It’s because many of the elderly are in nursing homes, and they are given those drugs to keep them quiet and easy to manage.
– Ray, our fundamentalist Christian speaker, again spoke near the kiosk. Ray isn’t interested in getting a crowd; he’s interested in saving souls. This scribe respects his dedication.
– Mr B explained why he doesn’t debate the Climate Change sceptics. (He doesn’t know enough about both sides of the argument, and he isn’t prepared to spend the time necessary to rectify that.)
– Mr B was asked why at home he framed his electricity bill, gas bill, water bill and phone bill, and hung them on his wall. He gave an unexpected answer.
– Who or what creates society? Does a society exist? Do billions of societies exist on Earth?
– Janet still presents her flag design for the time when Australia is ready to change its flag.
– Even the Flat Earth Theory got a brief mention by someone making a point.
8. In our Unusual Creature Serieswe present to you the Sumatran Rhinoceros. For the first time its picture appears in our Facebook page.