Saturday, July 6, 2024

Real women


A real woman will find handsome men attractive and will be pleased and at least a bit excited to encounter one. He may be out of reach (as in being married to someone else) but they will still enjoy the experience.

But that might not always go anywhere even if opportunity knocks. Z once said to me: "I used to go for handsome men but they are all stupid". Z is exceptionally bright so the "all" in that utterance is probably true for her.

But the ultimate real woman is a wife. She enjoys being with one man so much that she acts on her feelings and makes a public committment to him. Real women like real men

And there are degrees of wifeliness. The ultimate wife is a Scottish wife. At a buffet or party in Scotland the men will sit around talking and the women will select a plate of food and bring it to him. Part of the reason for that is that he might select some food that he doesn't finish. But his wife knows what he "takes" and gives him just the right plate of food

So I was pleased yesterday at a family gathering when Jenny got me a plate of food and brought it to me while I was sitting down talking. And it included some of my favourite things

So the ultimate wife is a Scottish wife. Jenny is mostly Irish but we don't need to quibble about details

And we both have a "past". Jenny did once marry a handsome man and I did once marry an attractive Scotswoman

And Z did once go all the way to a place in Asia with hopes for a handsome man she knew



Saturday, June 29, 2024

An amusing memory


Around the year 2000 I owned a 22 room boarding house in the poor Brisbane suburb of Ipswich. The demograhics were adverse, with a significant fraction of the tenants being fresh out of the "big house".

I reserved a front room for myself. I would spend time there watching TV while tenants came to me with rents, problems etc. My TV was an old B&W monitor drawing on the signal from an old VCR that was no good for its original purpose but still had a working tuner. So all the tenants could see that I was using a VCR without knowing that the VCR was useless for recording or playing back video tapes.

One or two of the resident thieves saw this and decided to steal the VCR to sell it to a pawnshop or the like. But that was not easy as I had placed deadlocks on all the doors.

Nothing daunted, they took advantage of my room being fairly close to the ground and moved a wheelie bin to underneath my window -- and climbed on the bin and broke in via the window. The deadlock prevented them from exiting via the door so they had to climb back out of the window with the VCR

When I saw what had happened and the trouble the thieves had taken, I was much amused and liked to imagine their conversation with the pawnbroker and the look of both surprise and disappoinmenton on their faces when they were told the VCR was worthless! They would not have been able to figure out where they got it wrong. I mentioned the matter to some of the other tenants so the the thieves would have become quite a laughing stock throughout the boarding house



Saturday, June 22, 2024

Well, bless me!


I was recently critical of Google for "search blocking" my Blogspot blogs. They do however now appear to have reversed course on that and now most statements on my blogs will appear in response to a Google search on the topics they cover.

So I was curious to see if they indexed statements on this blog. This blog has only a tiny readership so could fairly reasonably not be indexed by Google -- though it is hosted on Google servers!

Anyway, I was not surprised to see posts on this blog being ignored by them. But here is the funny part: They do index the copy of this blog that I put up on one of my backup sites! Colour me surprised but grateful!

See: http://jonjayray.com/memoirs.html

UPDATE: Since I wrote the above, Google have started indexing the Blogspot version of this blog too. I get the strong impression that someone at Google is keeping an eye on me! Probably mediated via their AI



Tuesday, June 18, 2024

I am a happy monarchist


Being both born into a monarchy and a citizen of the only country to have an entire continent to itself is pretty pleasing to me. Leftists for a while were always telling people to "check your privilege" and I acutely feel and appreciate my privilege of birth.

And the monarchy of which I am a subject is also undoubtdly the grandest one on earth. No-one does monarchy better than the British. And the amount of publicity they have been getting lately has been phenomenal. Politicians would kill for that sort of coverage. I have particularly enjoyed the coverage of the King's birthday celebrations -- even though it is actually not nearly his birthday! A delightful British eccentricity.

I was particulaly moved by the following report:

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-13537765/trooping-colour-royals-balcony-prince-louis-comment-kate.html

Like half the world, I was delighted to see Kate looking so well after battling cancer at such a young age

And I had to reflect that the British do military uniforms surpassingly well. And I am pleased that the royal family are an emphatically military family, wearing uniform on most public occasions. I did myself for a time serve in the armed forces so I have to a degree put myself where my mouth is in that respect.

And the young children who were on the balcony for the flyover were a delight too, with Charlotte being a typical big sister by telling her younger brother what to do

And our King is obviously a kind man of goodwill



Monday, June 17, 2024

Raw milk does taste better


A few years ago there was a controvesy in America over dairy farmers supplying milk from their cows directly to customers without going through pasteurization or going through any official channels at all. Farmers were prosecuted for it.

The matter was resolved by everyone involved claiming it was sold only for bathing in! Once you had it, drinking it was up to you.

I tasted it in my childhod and and still remember it as tasting richer.

It was when we were living at 41 Campbell st in Innisfail. The farmer had his herd where we could see it from where we lived. His name was Augie Sorensen. He used to supply unpasteurized milk (probably illegally) to quite a few Innisfail households -- including ours for a while. People would leave out a container and Augie would come along and fill it with very fresh milk.

The memorable thing about him however was his milk delivery vehicle -- a white horse-drawn cart that looked rather like a chariot. It did however have pneumatic tyres. The milk was stored under cover at the front of the cart and Augie stood up at the back to "drive".

I can still see Augie, tall and thin with his typically Scandinavian golden-brown skin and wearing his white pith helmet while standing up proudly in the back of his white cart guiding it along with his long reins. His big chestnut horse always used to have blinkers on -- probably needed if it was to be driven among motor vehicles.

My mother did not patronize Augie for long. She went back to bottled milk -- probably because of health concerns.

I think he was eventually shut down by the govenment. It was a loss. Back-to-nature enthusiasts would have applauded him. He was certainly a brilliant example of low-tech

The reason raw milk was eventually banned is that it was thought to transmit TB from infected cows. So it was amusing a few years later when we schoolkids all had to be tested for TB -- using the Mantoux skin test. We were all positive! We had all had TB without knowing it and were perfecly healthy. Augie's milk could have had something to do with that.



Friday, June 14, 2024

I am heathier than ever


I have just got the results from a big range of blood tests going back a couple of years. I was particularly interested in my vitamin D levels. I have spent most of my life hunched over a keybord so my D levels have always been a bit low. But I recently decided that I should take more care of myself so started taking 1000 IU of D3 with dinner

So I was pleased to find that my D levels are now mid-centre of the ideal range.

But the really pleasing thing is that a lot of things I was high or low on a couple of years back are now normal. I have got healthier over the last couple of years! Not sure why but Z would no doubt put it down to all the salad lunches she has been feeding me



Monday, June 10, 2024

Found it!


I knew I had written something about alexithymia in the past but could not find it. I thought it should be on this blog but a database search did not find it. I mentally blamed that on Google. It is suprising what they do NOT index and I have no idea what the guidelines are. Though I do know that nothing on my Greenie Watch blog or my Tongue Tied blog will be indexed

Anyway I have some old biographical notes from the 90s that have never been online and I found there what I had written. I think it is of some interest so I give it below:

"My mother was a bit of a social isolate and she inculcated her values into her children also. So that did not help my social development. She had a high opinion of herself and thought that everyone else was silly. I doubt that she ever had much fellow-feeling for anybody other than her own children.

I probably get my own rather flat emotional life from her. "Alexithymia" is the word for extreme cases of it, though alexithymics have psychosomatic illnesses and I do not. At any event, the sentimentality I inherited from my father made me much better able to relate to people than my mother could"



Saturday, June 8, 2024

A trip to Capalaba


Capalaba is one of Brisbane's older satellite suburbs so is not far from the centre and has a myriad of shops. Jenny drove us there yestrday morning.

And it was a good trip. One of the coffee clubs survives there so we ate there. I particularly like their flat grills and the one I had -- camembert & chicken -- was just right. A big lot of salad too. We then went OpShopping and I did well at the Vinny. I got some cutlery I liked, some boxed hankies, a new wired mouse (which I am using at the moment. I prefer mice without batteries) and I got a fun watch. It looks like a $2000 watch with a lot of dials but they are all fake -- just painted on. Looks impressive if you don't look closely

We then found a real true old-style bank nearby with a counter and tellers, where I drew out some money. Minimal queues. No machines. It was a BOQ. They have always been best for personal service. It was like a trip back in time. Jenny and I joked that it was almost worthwhile to go out to Capalaba to do your banking



Wednesday, June 5, 2024

Some Jungian psychology


Unlike many psychologists, I have some respect for the psychoanalysts of around a century ago. John Maze, one of my tutors at the University of Sydney when I was doing my Master's degree there, was also of that mind and he did influence my thinking about that to some degree

Z likes the psychoanalysts too so she occasionally sends me something from that literature. Below is a comment on why some young men continue to live in the family home well into adulthood. They see that as a sign of immaturity

"What actually led to this phenomenon? Psychologists claim that the root of the problem is that we live in an era of the absent father (he does not have to be physically absent) - young men are expected to leave the comfort of home, overcome the mother complex and shape a worthwhile life, but without the psychological support of their father. It is very difficult, especially in light of the fact that the absent father affects the mother as well. This creates a situation in which the mother tends to become more authoritative in order to compensate for the lack of a male figure in the dream life, but also the failure of the father to give the mother love and support creates an emotional hunger in her that she tries to satisfy through the relationship with the child. This is the moment in which the "perfect storm" is created in which the mother becomes what the Jungians call the "devouring mother", reports "Academyofideas".

https://zena.blic.rs/lifestyle/jung-otkrio-kako-nastaju-slabi-muskarci-i-zasto-je-danas-svet-prepunih-takvih/v7pvnp2

That relates to a lot in my own life. My mother was clearly the boss in our home and she rather disrespected my father --so my father had very little influence in my life. And my mother was very permissive and supportive to me. And she was something of a "devouring mother", who tended to live through the lives of her children. I was aware of that and disliked it

Where the Jungians get it wrong however is how the chidren tend to react to parental suffocation. In my day we simply left home. I did so at age 16 and lot of my contemporaries also did at age 16. It was normal in that era (the '60s). We were NOT permanently "suffocated". We just left the scene. So kudos to the Jungians for some insights but their predictive powers were weak



Sunday, June 2, 2024

From the Pantheon in Rome




Centred is a peripatetic person I sometimes lunch with. He is in good shape for a man in his 70s. Fortunately he is uxorious so his wife does not have to worry about some thirsty lady racing him off



Thursday, May 30, 2024

Alexithymia


The search function on Blogspot blogs is very good but has just let me down. I tried to find what I have written about alexithymia without success. I clearly remember writing about it but cannot find where. Anyway, I remember pretty much what I wrote so I will recapitulate.

Alexithymia is usually described as emotional flatness. Alexithymics don't display much emotion. I am very much in that category. I just don't get angry, for instance, and I just see criticisms as useful information, sometimes about me and sometimes about the critic. I am always "cool, calm and collected": Rather British, actually. The English are known for their horror of emotional displays. I fit in with that effortlessly.

The downside of that is that I don't express positive emotions much either. I am perfectly capable of feeling affection for the women in my life but have usually not done much to display it, which has undoubtedly damaged my relationsips at times. I am altogether too "British" in that department too. I am a very poor romantic. Any Italian would leave me in the dust in that respect, though I have had my moments. There is a rather famous movie about "Shirley Valentine" who leaves her boring British husband for a demonstrative Greek man which illustrates the national differences concerned. I have had Shirley Valentine aimed at my head a number of times

So when I heard about alexithymia I thought I might be an alexithymic. I discovered however that alexithymics are very distressed underneath their non-emotional exterior and that is certainly not me. I sail cheerfully through life in complete calm for almost all the time. Even my dreams are pleasant. I have only twice been very upset and those occasions were when the lady in my life walked out. Almost all my relationships have ended with the lady walking out but those two relationships were ones that I highly valued. Fortunately, the two ladies saw enough good in me not to walk very far and I remain on cordial terms with both.

So I am definitely not alexithymic. Maybe I should just describe myself as "British". I do trace all my ancestry to the British Isles and I have certainly got on exceptionally well whenever I have been over there

Maybe I am adaptible, however. Friends and family in Mediterranean countries such as Greece and Italy are well known for shouting at one another a lot. And my girlfriend haiis from a Mediterreanean country. And we do shout at one-another a lot. But we still love one-another. So I seem to have my Shirley Valentine after all

Tuesday, May 28, 2024

An arrival and a b*rthday


Z has arrived safe and sound in Beograd and has messaged me to say she misses me, so that is all in order. I miss her too

Jenny had a b*rthday recently so I shouted her her favourite breakfast (much smoked salmon) and went with her to buy some flowers. I suggested some led loses (forgive the Chinese accent) but she said she preferred something still living. Big Kath had that preference too. So she got a very pretty orchid in a pot. See below:





Sunday, May 26, 2024

A departure


Z flew out at 10pm last night for her holiday in Serbia, her native land. She will be away for a few months. She likes to swap the Brisbane winter for the Serbian summer.

I didn't go to the airport to see her off as I no longer drive, but she arranged for us to have a sendoff lunch that day. We went to the Buranda cafe, then back to my place and spent two hours together in all. It was a very affectionate occasion. She was messaging me right up to her departure.

I will miss her but expect to receive frequent messages from her. She is my little honey



Friday, May 24, 2024

A good dinner


For some time now, Jenny and I have had the custom of having a Thursday night dinner consisting of a Scotch fillet steak and a bottle of my favourite red. Jenny took a picture of part of our dinner last night so I thought it would be a good memoir of our custom. These days, it's the only night of the week that I have wine with my dinner





Monday, May 20, 2024

An instant roadside diagnosis


I thought I had posted this little story some years ago but I cannot trace it so I will tell it now.

At one stage when I was driving Anne around, she complained about a rattle in my Toyota Echo. I at first thought it was something loose in the glove box so told her not to worry about it.

One day, however, as I was exiting the carpark at the Buranda shopping centre, I paused briefy at the entrance to allow traffic in the street to pass.

As I did however, a man nearby on the footpath shouted out "timing-chain". From my youth in country Queensland where rattly British machines were all we had to work with, I knew exactly what he was saying and drove straight to the Toyota dealer and asked for the timing-chain to be checked. They in fact found two faulty chains and replaced both.

So that was a remarkable example of quick communication. No palaver at all. Just one word



Friday, May 17, 2024

A busy day today


I went to breakfast with Jenny at Buranda at 9:30am; I saw the plastic surgeon on the Terrace at 1 pm for a follow-up visit. We then had a "lunch" of iced coffee and cake back at Buranda.

Z came over between 5 and 7pm; I gave her a Pulsar electric watch as she likes watches and I have given her a few. This one was in its original box so she was very pleased with it



Thursday, May 16, 2024

Michael Darby


Below is his Wikipedia entry, now deleted

Michael John Darby is an Australian who has run for political office for the Liberal Party and the Christian Democratic Party.[1] He is an active business man, having had business ventures in Africa, Asia and Latin America, and is fluent in Mandarin Chinese.

Darby is the son of long-serving state Liberal MP Douglas Darby and attended Newington College (1957–1962).[2] A former army officer and interpreter, he became active in politics in the 1970s.[3] His first run for office was as the Liberal candidate for the safe Labor seat of Werriwa in the 1974 federal election, running against then-Prime Minister Gough Whitlam.

In 1975, Darby was one of the organisers of the Australian Society for Intercountry Aid – Timor, based in Dili. He was present at the hijacking of a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) plane in Baucau by Timorese Democratic Union (UDT) soldiers, who had surrendered to him and asked to be evacuated to Australia.[4]

Darby later contested the 1988 Oxley by-election as an independent, and also ran as an independent in Dickson in 1993. He subsequently returned to the Liberal Party and ran in the fifth position on the Coalition Senate ticket for New South Wales in 2004. In 2009–2010 he was campaign director for the Christian Democratic Party.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ? Hancock, Ian (20 September 2007). The Liberals: The NSW Division 1935-2000. Federation Press. ISBN 9781862876590. Retrieved 2013-10-18. Search this book on
  2. ? Newington College Register of Past Students 1863-1998 pp 48 (Syd, 1999)
  3. ? Squires, Michael (2010-01-04). "Michael Darby on Google, China, Islam and taxes". Digital Journal. Archived from the original on 29 September 2012. Retrieved 11 November 2010.
  4. ? Henriques-Gomes, Luke (17 January 2021). "'It was life or death': the plane-hijacking refugees Australia embraced". Guardian Australia. Retrieved 17 January 2021.
  5. ? Nicholls, Sean; McKenny, Leesha (17 February 2010). "Nile scapegoat calls in lawyers". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 11 November 2010.

External links[edit]



Monday, May 13, 2024

A political memory


In 1983, shortly after Jenny and I had got together, I took her and her children to an election night meeting at Toowong, to see in the election of Earle Bailey, now recently deceased.

Bailey was a Brisbane TV personality so as an established Brisbane figure, the National Party recruited him to contest the metropolitan seat of Toowong in tne October 1983 State Eleaction.

I was a rather active in politics in that era and I was in something of a habit of going along to watch in company as the results for my favoured local candidate came in. So I was pleased when he did get in

I must have done something to help with the campaign but I don't remember what. Michael Darby probably got me invited to the meeting but I think he was elsewhere. I knew him from when we were both in Sydney



In his first major speech in the Legislative Assembly on 30 November 1983, Bailey nailed his colours to the mast when he said—

"To me, the most important principle of human existence is the freedom of the individual. One way of evaluating freedom is by reference to decision-making ability, decision-making being shared between Governments and individuals. It is obvious that decision-making is power, and the more power that Governments have, the less remains to be shared amongst individuals."

So he was a good guy in my book and I am glad to have supported him. He was defeated in 1986 by the local Liberal alderman, Denver Beanland. It was at a time when the National party and the Liberal party were rivals

I had at that time been back in Brisbane for only a couple of months so knew nobody at the meeting, which was probably why I took Jenny along -- for company. I in fact stayed for most of the time with Jenny rather than mixing. But I remember somebody saying how nice it was to see children at the rally. I seem to recollect that the kids (aged 5 and 7) ran around a bit

Reference:

https://documents.parliament.qld.gov.au/speeches/spk2023/David_Crisafulli-Broadwater-20230914-231384023148.pdf



Footnote about Michael Darby: Among his many talents, Michael is quite a good bush poet. I particularly like his poem "The Stranger" It is online here:

https://michaeldarby.net/DarbyFamilyPoetry.pdf

You have to click 44 in the sidebar to get to it. I believe it was based on an actual event



Sunday, May 12, 2024

The post-Yugoslavia wars


Since my girlfriend is a fierce Serb patriot, I have been trying to get a grip on the wars in that general area after Yugoslavia broke up. Below is what I make of it:

The main conflict immediately after the breakup was between the Serbs and the Croats, which exist basically side by side geographically

in 1991 the Serb population in eastern Croatia (Slavonia) tried to secede from Croatia

The Serb army was however mainly aiming at capturing Dalmatia, under Croatian control. So they were busy in the South, trying to capture Dalmatian Dubrovnik from the Croats. But in the end, the Serbs failed to rip anything off Croatia, both in the South and in the North.

The Serbs in Bosnia however set up an independence movement in 1992. With the assistance of the Serb army, they prevailed and two big chunks of Bosnia were split off under Serb rule, to form a new territory called Republika Srpska which was formally recognized by the UN in 1995


Serbs had the best hats

It was part of the Bosnian war when a lot of Muslim civilians were killed at Srebrenitsa, while Dutch troops who were supposed to be there protecting them did nothing

It was also in that war that the long-lasting siege of Sarajevo took place, in which forces of the Republika Srpska blockaded the Bosnian capital. It was primarily to end that siege that the U.N. granted official recognition to the Republika Srpska

A soldier of the Republika Srpska in dress uniform -- holding her Serbian-made Zastava assault rifle. At its peak, the armed forces of the Republika Srpska numbered over 80,000.

My little Cetnik emigrated to N.Z. in 1995, foreseeing future trouble from Kosovo

So Serbs lost out in their wars with Croatia but had a big gain in Bosnia. Serbs now control roughly half of Bosnia. The Bosnian Serbs were not however allowed to unite with Serbia. They remained an independent State. So there are now two Serb political entities: The Republic of Serbia and the Serbian Republic -- not to be confused! Nothing in the Balkans has ever been simple

But just when eveything had settled down, in 1997 the Kosovars (Ethnic Albanian Muslims) in Southern Serbia rebelled, demanding independence

The Serbs however did not want to lose control of their South so tried to suppress the Kosovars militarily. That attracted a lot of international attention and support for Kosovo independence.

So NATO got involved to help the Kosovars, bombing the Serbs to make them retreat from Kosovo. So the USA under Clinton bombed Christian Serbia to help Muslim Kosovars! The Serbs more or less gave up after the bombing and all is mostly peaceful there now.

There were atrocities committed by all sides in the wars of the 1990s, causing most people living as minorities to flee to the heartland of their respective nations. So most Croatians now live in Croatia, most Bosniaks now live in central Bosnia and most Serbs now live in one of the Serbias. That is probably conducive to future peace. There are however some Serbs still living in Northern Kosovo so that has led to some unrest

An odd footnote. Immediately after the U.N. recognition of the Republika Srpska, its first President was a "Mrs Plavšić". Suprisingly feminist.



Although she never killed anyone, Biljana Plavšić was later convicted as a war criminal. She was in fact a distinguished academic. After serving an 11-year prison sentence in Sweden, she returned to Belgrade in 2009 where she has been living ever since. She is now in her 90s, having survived Covid-19



Saturday, May 11, 2024

Tickling as foreplay


It is most likely to result in orgasm, a new study suggests

Well, what do you know? I had forgotten this. For a couple of years I had a relationship with C.W., an exceptionally good-looking woman with whom I also had an exceptionally good sexual relationship. I am not normally a great sexpot so that is surprising.

I was around 50 at the time but thanks to Viagra, we normally had sex at least twice a night. She once went around at her office job the day afterwards boasting that she had it seven times the night before I may have gone into her seven times but I certainly did not come seven times. She regularly used to go around with the top button of her blouse undone so people would get a glimpse of her big black bra so she would have been believed

And I did tickle her a lot while we were in bed. Her shrieks of laughter would stun other occupants of the house at Forest St. And, yes, the tickling was a form of foreplay. It led up to intercourse. It was a custom we just hit upon that I attributed to her general good humour so have never done it with anyone else. From what I read below I failed to learn a lesson from my own experience.

****************************************************



Thursday, May 9, 2024

A vist to the dentist


Way back in primary school I learnt a little rhyme:

Some tortures are physical
And some are mental
But the one that is both
Is definitely dental

And there is much truth in that

I have good teeth so my vists to the dentist have been rare. I could feel a cavity and a slight soreness, however, so I saw Tina Tavakol at Buranda. I have seen her before and was favourably impressed.

She spent half an hour doing 2 fillings at a total cost of $600+ of which my health fund defrayed $200+. So that was not too bad for 2 fillings

But here is the good bit: Once the local had worn off I had no pain or discomfort whatever. Can anyone ask more? Kudos to Tina!

And Tina spoke Australian English, which is a great help to an old deafie like me. Her surname is Iranian but I am guessing that her heritage is Zoroastrian rather than Muslim

I was amused at what fillings are called these days: "Adhesive restorations".

https://dentalonpark.com.au/our-team/