Columns

Friday
Nov012013

Worry warts, tightarses and control freaks 

I have a confession to make. I’m going to write about my only regret. It’s deep, it’s embarrassing and it’s contradictory to everything I stand for. I have spent my life deprogramming myself to rid this nagging energy sucker, fun buster and life spoiler from my psyche.

Let me give you a little context first. I come from a long line of poor people and I grew up poor. Recreation and pleasure were not things that were encouraged or valued. We did them, sure. Occasionally and not with the joie de vivre that we could have. And should have. We should have switched off and let our hair down. Not felt guilty.

Thursday
Oct242013

Should Kids Get Pocket Money? 

I loved money as a kid. Loved saving it, smelling it, looking at it, fingering it, counting it, piling it up, piggy banks, charity tins shaken at traffic lights, plastic guide dog money boxes with slots in their head near the supermarket check out, the wooden and velvet collection plate at mass, the collection bags for school bank books, purses that snapped shut and wallets full of fragrant flat folded notes. Mmmm, I can smell it now....

Tuesday
Oct152013

Kids Should Be Banned From Cafes. Don't argue, I'm right. 

What's with the babychino?


Why do children have to pretend to drink coffee?

If it's an attempt to convince yourself others view your kids as cultured, continental and worldly, here's a flash for you. If these kids were actually in Europe (and not at some shopping centre food court where the bain marie food is marked 'gourmet') not only would the kids be drinking ACTUAL coffee, but it would include a generous tipple of Marsala. And they'd enjoy their caffeine transportation vehicle with a cigarette. No filter. Or a magic cookie if it was Amsterdam.

And they wouldn't have names like Tay-Lah, Maverick or Shenaid. Just saying.

Here's a question for you. What the fork are kids doing in cafes anyway? Anyone? Thugs, grubs, louts and yobbos every single one of them. Get 'em out. I didn't send my kids to childcare so I could go to cafes and pretend I didn't have children only for my fantasy to be fractured by the pollution of the output of your issue and your revolting stench of self congratulatory wankathon.

Why are the standards different for ejecting an adult than a child from a café or restaurant? I want zero tolerance policy. Seen not heard or smelt, felt or annoyed by otherwise, ‘the tribe has voted and it’s time to go….. Briannahannha.’

Actually not seen either. Because no, I do not want to play "Peekaboo" with your ugly dumb 18 month old ratfaced. I hate my own kids. Imagine what I think about your's.  

If an adult was trashing the place, screaming and throwing food around you’d chuck 'em out. Why not kids? 

'Kids don't like cafes. They way you can tell is by the screaming.' Kitty Flanagan.

That smug look on the mum's faces (yes it's always and only the mum's faces. Dads do take kids to cafes but for reasons unknown aren't smug) when they ram through the door with their giant monster truck prams, makes me want to slap them. Mother and child. That smug look says 'My child is so cultured, well behaved and au fait with eating out, and I’m such a stylish yet earthy mother we're more or less French.'

No you're not. You've spent your life wishing you were cool. You're one of those 'I'm not in a band but I've got friends in a band' people who send your kids to a secondary school where students don't wear uniforms in hope they will somehow be infected with cool. Won’t happen.

'The heaviest burden a child carries is the unlived life of their parents' Carl Yung.

These days parents can't walk out the door with their kids to nip out and post a letter without hummus, crudités, filtered water, rice crackers, Burcher muesli, homemade muffins (AKA cake) organic yoghurt without permeates, fruit salad and some falafel wraps with pesto from the farmers fucking market. 

As a child in the 70's you know what my parents would bring for us five kids to eat and drink on a four-hour car journey? Guess?

Nothing.

And you know what we got when we arrived? Water from the tap. Or a cup of cordial, if it was your birthday.

What's with the 'kids menus' too? It used to be just a menu with food. Not a kids’ menu with kids’ food. These same parents who travel with plastic containers, zip lock bags and non-porous bottle for healthy snacks and refreshments for their precious gifted children who have 'very adult palates' and 'eat anything’ are always the first asking for the 'kids menus'. (Or worse stilll BRING THEIR OWN FOOD TO THE CAFE FOR THEIR CHILDREN TO EAT) They give the waiter 'the special look' that conveys to the waiter to act as if their children are incredibly advanced, well behaved and dare I say ‘gifted’ and if the waiter themselves has never encountered such enchanting children no matter what mouth breathing, chinless morons they are.

Back in the 70's eating out as a kid meant a picnic or a barbeque in the back yard.

In the 70s we ate tomato sauce sandwiches, we ate jelly crystal sandwiches, we ate hundreds and thousands sandwiches. That’s all we ate. Milo and Cornflakes were considered health food. ‘Tang and Fruit Loops for breakfast? Why not, it’s 1979!’

This kids in café thing is bullshit. Back in my day we knew our place.  At home with the mother’s group, a Boston bun and one Ikea catalogue between eight of us while we sat round whinging about husbands and talking about our vaginas. Go back home and leave the cafes to people like us pretending we’re cool and we don’t have kids.

I don’t give a stuff what you think. I don’t need anyone to agree with me to know I’m right. But I could do with a latte…..

 

Is there someone in your life who wants to write, keeps saying they are going to write but still can't pull their finger out?
 
Or perhaps is it you?
  
Fuck reading, make this the summer of writing. Beginners welcome.
The Gunnas Writing Masterclass BOOK HERE. 
Thursday
Oct102013

Exposure? Shove it. Show Me The Money

Two things.  Never work for free.  Never ask anyone to work for free. Got it? Good.

Ilike many freelancers, constantly get requests from businesses to work for free. It’s offensive, rude and unprofessional. And very, very common. And not just grass roots groups, multi-national corporations.

Let me share with you yesterday’s request which was typical. Sad truth is the companies and businesses calling themselves feminist are the worst. I receive weekly “can you come and talk about women being shafted and by the way we’ll shaft you” emails.

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO

Thursday
Oct032013

Insurance Is A Health Hazard

I’m deeply opposed to insurance (apart from the basics, home and car).  Life insurance, health insurance, disability insurance, income protection insurance… the list is endless.

The culture of insurance quashes people’s innovation, resilience, creativity and self-reliance. It gives people an illusion of safety and certainty. It stops people thinking. And risk taking. It stops people living their lives. It makes people believe money can solve everything. Well, everything that’s important. So you just work. Make the money and pay the insurance and everything will be okay. You don’t have to look after your health, your relationships, your emotional well-being or your career. You don’t have to continuously ask yourself the hard questions ‘what do I want now?’, ‘what do I need now?’, ‘what it best for me?’ or act on the responses.

 

CLICK TO READ MORE 

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