TURNS out Civic’s iconic merry-go-round ain’t so merry after all. 

“CC” received grumblings from a customer who had purchased in good faith a $25 10-ride ticket, but when she tried to use it last week, was told the ride had changed hands and the new operators wouldn’t be honouring the tickets.

“CC” contacted the new operators community group LEAD –  to follow up, and were told that since they are a not-for-profit group, unlike the previous operators, the pre-paid cards “eat into their funds”. They did promise to give any customers with a multiple ticket one free whirl, though. Not good enough – the ACT Office of Fair Trading  can be contacted on 6207 0400.

Crusade continues

“CC’s” unabashed crusade against silly signs is finding friends.

John Milne, of Chapman, reports seeing a big roadside sign along Athllon Drive from Mawson Drive to Hindmarsh Drive that reads: “People Die on ACT Roads”.

“So what, people die on roads everywhere,” he wisely observes.

“It’s not peculiar to Canberra. Or is it a spelling error, and it should be ‘People Drive on ACT Roads’?

“Whichever, it must take the prize for being the most pointless road sign anywhere in Australia, and another waste of taxpayers’ money. Next we will be seeing road signs stating that, ‘People Live in Canberra But Die on ACT Roads’!”. That-a-boy, John.

Haslems, ahoy

NEWS from the coast… a passing seagull reports that former Canberra celebrity couple John and Caryl Haslem have vacated their Batemans Bay real estate office and merged with the neighboring Elders franchise. “John has finally bitten the bullet and is working towards retirement,” Caryl says. “He will work with Elders as an agent, which will enable him to work at his own pace, free from the ever-increasing obstacles to running small business and to gradually slow down.”

She has four properties to sell before she quits, “although I can see me being John’s PA for a while”.

Black banned?

“CITYNEWS” Gadfly columnist Robert Macklin’s day job is as one of Canberra’s most prolific and successful authors. And he’s pretty darn good at it, too, having most recently written Kevin Rudd’s authorised biography and a blockbuster history of BHP.

So far, his last book “SAS Sniper”, has sold 43,000 copies in Australia and 12,000 in the US. Despite “The Canberra Times” recent literary group hugs and public declarations to reviewing the work of local writers, Macklin’s book went unmentioned. Needless to say his new book, “One False Move” has been mouldering out there in Fyshwick for two months now, leading Macklin to believe he has been black banned again. Really, Robert?

Not quite apples

WE who throw stones… reader Elizabeth Tracey spotted a howler on last week’s open garden page in which we purred at the presence of a Forrest driveway bordered by, ahem, “crap apples”. “If I had a ‘crap’ apple planted in my garden, I dare say I wouldn’t be opening it to the public!” she gently taunted.

Dummy half?

THERE’S something about Garry…. another month, another silly picture of Raiders’ tragic and head milkman of Canberra Milk, Garry Sykes. Last month we had him modelling a lime Green Machine suit, this time he’s pictured at the National Press Club with a dummy – green, of course – between his lips. Why? It might be best to wonder rather than ask.

Gone to pot

A LEADING Canberra landscape designer and customer, supplier and best friend of the troubled Government-owned Yarralumla Nursery since 1968 has resigned his account with them and moved his business across the border to a commercial nursery in Queanbeyan distraught at the way customer service was being practised under a succession of recent, short-term managers.

Young at heart

THEY think of everything in cherry-obsessed Young, home of the 63rd annual National Cherry Festival (November 30-December 2), where more than 10,000 cherry aficionados thronged the town last year.
Claire Myers, treasurer of the organising committee, promises “something for everyone”, though one wonders at the the dietary benefits of the cherry pie-eating competition or the culturally challenging cherry pip-spitting contest. But there is the reassuring Cherry Festival Street Parade – one of the largest and longest-standing street parades in regional Australia – as well as the announcement of the quaint Cherry and Charity Queens for 2012.

True to form

A LOCAL accountant tells the hilarious tale of a small business mis-filling in a business activity statement application form to the effect that every notice they get from the ATO is now addressed to “As Above”!

The Corflute candidates

AS we weary of the election Corflute Botox blight of improbably youthful election candidates (Joy Burch, especially, appears to have shed years on the Parkway) staked along the city’s every highway and byway, the Dutch have the right idea.

This photo is from Cedric Bryant , who says candidates in The Netherlands are constrained to pasting posters only on communal billboards at the entry to towns.

Chic’s flirting chicks

LAST week, “CC” outed Australian Motorist Party candidate Chic Henry’s campaign search for “lovely ladies” to wear “sexy T-shirts” and help with his election campaign in Ginninderra.

We wondered why “sexy T-shirts”? His daughter Georgia explains the job spec publicly on Facebook: “My dad is looking for a group of girls to come around to all the bars around Belconnen and Civic to spread the word about why to vote for him… most people don’t care, so by getting their attention through girls it will hopefully make an impact.”

Georgia warns flirting with boys will be involved, “but it’s all about getting the message out there.” Yeh, right. And for the female voters, Chic?

It’s simple, you just um…

HOW smart is Canberra, writes a troubled voter from Greenway? About to bunk off for some sunshine in Queensland, our Vitamin D-deprived reader writes: “We just voted electronically. What a (bad) joke. Appallingly confusing instructions and ancient technology (keypad).

“Even the polling people found it difficult. Not great for a so called IT city.”

Better luck on Saturday, everyone.

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