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“Men whose trade is rat-catching love to catch rats; the bug destroyer seizes on his bug with delight; the suppressor is gratified by finding his vice.”

Sydney Smith

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When rats infest the Palace a lame cat is better than the swiftest horse.

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“All depression has its roots in self-pity, and all self-pity is rooted in people taking themselves too seriously.”

At the time Switters had disputed her assertion. Even at seventeen, he was aware that depression could have chemical causes.

“The key word here is roots,” Maestra had countered. “The roots of depression. For most people, self-awareness and self-pity blossom simultaneously in early adolescence. It’s about that time that we start viewing the world as something other than a whoop-de-doo playground, we start to experience personally how threatening it can e, how cruel and unjust. At the very moment when we become, for the first time, both introspective and socially conscientious, we receive the bad news that the world, by and large, doesn’t give a rat’s ass. Even an old tomato like me can recall how painful, scary, and disillusioning that realization was. So, there’s a tendency, then, to slip into rage and self-pity, which if indulged, can fester into bouts of depression.”

Tom Robbins, Fierce Invalids Home from Hot Climates

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The tiger takes the leap, the eagle spreads its wings


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Mr Smith by D.H. Souter

“Mr. Smith of Tallabung
Has very wicked ways.
He wanders off into the bush
And stays away for days.

He never says he’s going;
We only know he’s gone.
There’s lots of cats like Mr. Smith,
Who like to walk alone.

He plays that he’s a tiger,
And makes the dingoes run.
He scratches emus on the legs
And plays at football with their eggs;
But does it all in fun.

And then, one day, he’s home again,
The skin all off his nose,
His ears all torn and tattered,
His face all bruised and battered,
And bindies in his toes.

He wanders round and finds a place
To sleep in in the sun,
And dream of all the wicked things
That he has been and done.

Mr. Smith of Tallabung
May be a bad cat;
But everybody likes him –
So that’s just that.”

“Australian Bush-Babs” by D. H. Souter


1 1 1 1 1 1 histoiredu00bann_0027The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 – 1954), Saturday 24 January 1931

1 1 1 1 1 1 The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW - 1842 - 1954), Saturday 24 January 1931


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Los trapos sucios se lavan en casa

Dirty clothes are washed at home

If you have issues to sort out with your spouse or other family members, do it in the privacy of your home. No need to let other people on!

See more at: http://www.spanish-learning-corner.com/spanish-proverbs.html#sthash.Pv2ryj7I.dpuf

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Western Mail (Perth, WA : 1885 – 1954), Thursday 6 January 1944,

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the beauty of boys
in a morning-frost, white
skin running between white

sheets snagged by wooden
the kind that have no wire,
are solid, inescapable. Gods.

my stepson,
watching as the world cracks open,
stubble yet to scar his lip,
but lines of man-muscle on the boy-bones.

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We should put the emphasis on the rediscovery of our own individual clown, the one that has grown-up within us and which society does not allow us to express. Jacques Lecoq

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The genius of clowning is transforming the little, everyday annoyances, not only overcoming, but actually transforming them into something strange and terrific. it is the power to extract mirth out of nothing and less than nothing.

“Grock” Karl Adrie


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Fear of Clowns

Over summer the circus came again to the Regatta Grounds

and all up and down in clear view of highway intersections

half-a-dozen huge jumping-castle sized inflated clowns

were blown up ridiculously and roped down in various front yards.

Six metres tall, with orange hair, the pink nose, big eyes and luber lips

and bobbing blue hats taller than the brick veneer and carport.

Sitting squat and wiggling in the wind like silly super-sized toddlers,

with their grimacing gigantic gargantuan gobs.

Coulrophobia is a ‘fear of clowns’, and arguably it’s well-founded.

I don’t know how Hobart Coulrophobiasts cope

when the circus comes to town and flogs its bill.

There’s no road out of town safe from the grease-paint monsters.

One Sunday morning when the winds really gusted up

I saw one of these jumping-castle clowns jump its fence.

It bounced like a nightmare nursery rhyme ball, its ropes dangling,

all the way over a six-lane highway to finish stupefied against a cyclone fence.


When spiders’ webs unite, they can tie up a lion. Ethiopian

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“Every morning an impala wakes up knowing that it must outrun the fastest lion if it wants to stay alive. Every morning a lion wakes up knowing that it must outrun the slowest impala or it will starve. It makes no difference if you are a lion or an impala, when the sun comes up in Africa you must wake up running” 
~ anonymous, Zambia

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The Break O’Day Lion


©Wilfred Blake (1934) 

There’s a rumour going round the town
As I’ve heard people say –
That a wild animal is at large
Out there at Break 0’day.

The woodcutters saw this tawny shape
Slinking ‘thru the scrub
Up there on the hillside
Near the derelict old pub.

Peter Jackson’s gang, who saw this beast
Declare it was a lion –
And that they are men of integrity
There’s certainly no denyin’.

They say that it’s a man-eater –
And women too, presuming:
That’s why some blokes took their wives
To Break O’ Day mushrooming.

The farmers of the district
Were suddenly in shock;
If this creature isn’t soon destroyed
It will decimate our stock.

Bill Fry’s party then went out
On Big Game Hunting bent.
The tracked it ’round the water race
Past Charlie Walsh’s tent.

They followed it across the bridge
That spans the water race.
And of paw marks on the other side
There was not a trace.

Then someone spotted further on
A patch of muddy bog
But the critics say those tracks were made
By Tommy Marshall’s dog.

Now Tommy’s dog is very large
And he is tawny grey
And was known to wander far and wide
Even out to Break O’ Day.

It has never been seen again
‘Cept by a bloke who was on the grog
And it’s thought that what the woodmen saw
WAS Tommy Marshall’s dog.


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The cut worm forgives the plow. William Blake.

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& like any poet
avoiding myth & message
to fake a flashy ode, consider
what model of Australia as a nation
could match the ocean, or get your desk
to resemble a beach /
it would have to function
like Tom Roberts’ Opening of the
Federal Parliament
, our nation being
a sort of awkward, academic machine—
can’t you see the feathers in my hat
& my gold striped pantaloons
as I jot this down
in the open-cut sestina form,
developing like a back-yard vegetable bed
bordered by upturned bottles,
nostalgia for a national style?
‘Oh, my hat!’ said the ADC.
‘If I hold this pose much longer I’ll collapse!’

les Murray


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Advocate (Burnie, Tas. : 1890 – 1954), Saturday 7 July 1945,

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Selena Odom: I have a master of an evil kind He totally controls my body, soul, and mind.




last week,  I think on Tuesday,

she died

just gave up breathing

toppled over

a big smashed doll

with the needle still in her arm


I made a funeral of leaves

and sang the Book of Questions

to her face as white as hailstones

to her eyes as closed as heaven

‘For Ann so still and dreamy’


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“What was so painful about Amy’s death is that I know that there is something I could have done. I could have passed on to her the solution that was freely given to me. Don’t pick up a drink or drug, one day at a time. It sounds so simple; it actually is simple but it isn’t easy; it requires incredible support and fastidious structuring.”

― Russell Brand

My room is a grave yard of whisky bottles in a swamp of stale beer, cigar ashes, and dick jokes. Vincent Brooks

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In the UK we used to have ‘jug and bottle’ which was (usually) a hatch 
from a corridor in a pub through which off-sales (into jugs and bottles, 
unsurprisingly) were made, the customer not needing to go into the bar, 
lounge, snug or smoke-room. Now very rare, alas.

As others have said, places with an off-licence only (no on-licence to 
drink on the premises) are affectionately known as ‘offies