Sunday, October 11, 2009

I hate all racists. And the Dutch.*

What do you do when, in your professional capacity working in a university, you come across someone who needs help, but somehow blames that need on "cashed-up Asians"? Not literally, but in that roundabout way that ingrained, casual racism has which makes it seem more thought out and considered to the user, but just proves how circuitous a route your racist is willing to travel in order to shift blame and retain their ideological laziness.

To sum up: her lecturer is unhelpful because universities care so much about attracting internationals with the folding stuff that they forget about "Australians". A guy doing a Phd studying Australian states is unsuitable because he's being paid to do so by a foreign government, the implication being that he will return home, taking that knowledge with him. Which is apparently a bad thing. All these foreign students have money and laptops and broadband.
"And many don't."
"Oh yeah, yeah! Heaps of us (note the familiar "us") are doing it tough."

It might seem unusual, but I'm actually pretty dry and straight forward when I'm at work. I take a little bit of pride in my direct, professional manner. I'll slip in the odd dick joke, but by and large I'm not "on". It means that I relax. I don't have to think of my own interesting little chit chats and opinions, it's just the company line, straight up and let's move on. I have a small reputation for efficiency and proficiency. It's comfortable; easy.
This doesn't really help when university policy has neglected to include tearing the retched flappy ears from pug-nosed racists who repeatedly identify themselves as being victims of equity issues.

So I went and wrote a blog.
That'll show 'em.



  1. Do people in the Netherlands call it an Australian oven?

  2. Spare a thought for my older brother who is married to a lovely Singaporean girl who has lived here for more than half her life.

    At the relatively ripe old age of 38 he started his plumbing apprenticeship and for six months was placed with a man whose obsessive spewing about 'Asians' all damn day meant that R clammed up entirely and didn't dare reveal anything about his personal life. He needed to learn and he needed this mental pygmy to write him a good review.

    He didn't dare tell his wife about it either, but revealed to me - many months later and when he'd moved on to a better placement - that it caused him enough stress to wake up each morning with stomach spasms and back cramps.

    Now this is the same guy who once worked as a carpark attendant at the Royal Adelaide Show as a uni student and, after being told to eff off by a car full of hoons who didn't pay, took a mental note of where they parked, bided his time and slashed their tyres later that day.

    He has yet to reveal to me what he did to his excremental supervisor, but I suspect I'll hear about it when he feels it's safe enough to tell me!

    So, in summary, what are YOU going to do about that that somehow salves your soul but saves your job?

  3. Jono - Probably something mutlivowelled.

    Kath - I told you! I wrote a blog! And I was abrupt! I didn't even tell her where to go ... to get IT help ...

  4. Live abroad. It reminds you that Australia is such an isolated place and very susceptible to the temptation of blaming the unfamiliar. We claim to be multi-cultural but its not true.


An explanation of The Joy Division Litmus Test

Although it may now be lost in the mysts of thyme, the poll below is still relevant to this blog. In the winter of 2008, Mele and I went to live in Queensland. In order to survive, I bluffed my way into a job at a Coffee Club.
It was quite a reasonable place to work: the hours were regular, the staff were quite nice, it wasn't particularly taxing on my brain.
There were a few downsides: In the six weeks or so that I worked there, there was about a 90% staff turnover (contributed to by my leaving). This wasn't seen as a result of the low pay, the laughability of staff prices or the practice of not distributing tips to staff, rather it was blamed on the lack of work ethic among Bribie Island's youth.
However, one of the stranger aspects of the cultural isolation that touched our lives during our time "up there" was the fact that nobody at my work had heard of the band Joy Division.
The full explanation is available here.
But please, interact a little further and vote in my ongoing poll. The results are slowly mounting up, proving one thing: people read this blog are more well-informed about Joy Division than anyone who works at the Coffee Club on Bribie Island.

Have you heard of the band Joy Division?

Chinese food, not Chinese Internet!

Champions of Guess The Header

  • What is Guess The Header about? Let’s ask regular “Writing” reader, Shippy: "Anyway, after Franzy's stunning September, and having a crack at 'Guess The Header' for the first time - without truly knowing what I was doing mind you - I think I finally understand what 'GTH' is all about. At first I thought you needed to actually know what it was. Don't get me wrong — if you know what it is, it may help you. I now realise that it's more Franzy's way of invoking thought around an image or, more often than not, part of an image. If you dissect slightly the GTH explanatory sentence at the bottom of his blog you come up with this: “The photo is always taken by me and always connects in some way to the topic of the blog entry it heads up.” When the header is put up, the blog below it will in some obscure way have something to do with it. “Interesting comments are judged and scored arbitrarily and the process is open to corruption and bribery with all correspondence being entered into after the fact and on into eternity, ad infinitum amen.” Franzy judges it, but it's not always the GTH that describes the place perfectly that gets it. “The frequent commenters, the wits, the wags and the outright smartarses who, each entry, engage to both guess the origin and relevance of the strip of photo at the top (or “head”) of each new blog and also who leave what I deem the most interesting comment.” It generally helps if you're a complete smartarse and can twist things to mean whatever you feel they should mean - exactly the way Franzy would like things to be twisted." - Shippy Blogger and GTH point scorer.
  • Nai - 1
  • Lion Kinsman - 2
  • Will - 2
  • Brocky - 2
  • Andy Pants - 2
  • The 327th Male - 3
  • Mad Cat Lady - 3
  • Miles McClagen - 4
  • Myninjacockle - 4
  • Asheligh - 5
  • Neil - 5
  • Third Cat - 5
  • Adam Y - 6
  • Squib - 6
  • Mele - 6
  • Moifey - 7
  • Jono - 8
  • The Other, other Sam - 14
  • Kath Lockett - 15
  • Shippy - 19
  • River - 32