JANUARY is the time when politicians grandstand in order to draw attention to themselves. ACT Greens MLA Shane Rattenbury chose a risky vehicle for exposure by jumping on the “I’ve-taken-ecstasy-too” bandwagon.
Lobbying the NSW government to allow pill testing at music festivals, NSW Green Cate Faehrmann admitted: “Since my 20s, I’ve occasionally taken MDMA at dance parties and music festivals”. Rattenbury admits he tried MDMA once but “didn’t like the effect it had on me”.
RATTENBURY’S glibness has a familiar ring to it. A ’90s disingenuous confession by a well-known baby boomer from Little Rock, Arkansas, to “experimenting” with weed but not “inhaling” springs to mind. Hopefully, Bill Clinton’s dope dodge doesn’t spread through the Assembly. We are not ready for screaming headlines “attributed” to Libs leader Alistair Coe: “I once snuck into Mooseheads on a school night, but I didn’t drink”!
STILL on the Clinton administration, a Canberra author has tweeted former White House intern Monica Lewinsky on the topic of internet trolls. @Ginger Gorman offered @MonicaLewinsky a copy of her new book “Troll Hunting: Inside the world of online hate and its human fallout”. Ms Gorman told the activist: “I really admire the work you are doing in this area and would like to give you one”. Gorman also tweeted: “The world’s most notorious troll, weev, describes me as a ‘lying whore’, Is he right?”’
FORMER ACT football chief Heather Reid has been drawn into the ugly brawl sparked by the shock sacking of Matilda’s coach Alen Stajcic. Ms Reid, who joined a new-look FFA board late last year, has been forced to defend herself from media accusations she was part of a group that punted the coach. An angry Reid says the suggestion was “absolutely not correct” and that it was “an ugly mess that some people in the media want to push against women of influence” including herself.
STILL in the women’s sports arena; when I was on radio in 2013 I regularly struggled to get a single taker for free tickets to a Canberra Capitals game. But that dark period for the outfit which had had a stranglehold on women’s basketball for the previous decade is finally over with the Caps WNBL Minor premiers. And, true to form, Canberra’s fair-weather sports fans are flocking back to Caps’ games at double the rate of last year.
EDGY local animal protection activist group Anti-Speciesist Action Collective has pledged to ramp up the shock value of its public protests. Cleverly tapping into the barbecue theme of Australia Day, the group staged a “Babies on the Barbie” in Civic. A spokesperson tweeted: “We raised a lot of eyebrows and instigated some double takes in Garema Place. Bystanders were fascinated by the concept we were illustrating”.
A CHAMPION Canberra canine is going out on top, with some impressive letters to its name. Five-year-old chocolate border collie Jamie is now RO.CH Jamie CDX RAE RM and retiring from the sport of Companion Training after winning the prestigious ACT Rally Obedience Champion title. Jamie’s handler, Kaye Holder, from Higgins, says her pride and joy qualified seven times in Masters with a pass mark of 85 and a further 10 times with a pass mark of 90 to gain its Champion Title.
I turned 65 on Australia Day. Unexceptional, I know, but importantly I’m no longer cranky. Five years ago I threatened to buy myself a birthday present – a pet monkey that I could train to rip the face off the next person who uttered the puerile piffle that 60 was the new 50. Recently Jeff Kennett called for former PM Tony Abbott to leave politics. But Abbott’s reply: “The last thing we want to do is give the idea that just because you’re 60 or even 70 you’re necessarily over the hill”, still rankles. For the record, I didn’t buy the primate.