Archive | August, 2013

The Sound Of Silence

23 Aug

Silence

 

I thought I had heard it all but this week I was proven wrong. On one hand I was saddened and on the other I wasn’t surprised.

This week the Wallaby captain James Horwill and flanker Michael Hooper pleaded to the New Zealand Rugby fans to stop booing Quade Cooper.

“I think it’s quite unreasonable what the All Black supporters are doing to him,” Hooper said.
“He’s a great player and a great guy so I think everyone who enjoys footy wants to see him do well.
“I think the booing’s a bit below-the-belt sort of stuff. He deserves more than that as a player.
 

Effectively, Mum and Dad (Horwill can assume the role of dad) have come by his school and asked the other kids to stop picking on Quade.  Poor old Quadie needs to be shown more respect. The players will soon be requesting that all the security hold up ‘Quiet Please’ signs like in the US PGA. Or even better get an umpire to sit on a raised platform and command ‘Quiet Please’ before the start of each set piece.

Once again the Wallabies have shown the world how soft their underbellies are and why they represent no real threat to New Zealand.  Where do these players ‘get off’ trying to tell the crowd who not to boo and jeer. It shows how mentally fragile these bunch of children are. If you are real competitors then you use the boos and the insults to fuel the desire to win. The harder they boo the more you should want to win. What would have happened if Craig McLaughlin or Rove McManus cried foul every time they were booed? Well a bloody lot of tears, but, Rove and Craig pressed on and forged careers  amidst the insults. Their living proof that with perseverance, desire and thick skin you will eventually succeed. Even without any talent.

Do you think the French Rugby side would complain if they were booed? For all their pomp and the ceremony the French are fiercely proud and refuse to be dominated, except for maybe World War I and for that matter World War II. BUT in the World Cup final in New Zealand when the Haka was being performed they didn’t just sit back and let  the New Zealand crowd and players intimidate them.

NO! They advanced on the Haka.

Vive La Résistance.

Even though this was against the IRB rules they still did it. They dealt with the fine after the match but for that moment in time they drew a line in the sand (a far more effective and definitive line than the Maginot) and said enough. Fact of the matter is, is that the Haka is a sign of aggression and the players use it to intimidate. I couldn’t care less whether the New Zealanders think the Haka should be respected. The players can pay tribute to the culture of the original inhabitants of Aotearoa during the week not 2 minutes before kick off. I love the Haka but with no right of reply the theatre is lost. Watching the French advance I felt like grabbing a beret, a baguette and a ban the burka sticker because the Frenchman inside me had awoken.

Allez Les Blue!

But instead, how do the Wallabies act when threatened? They politely ask the crowd if they could hold their boos.

‘As players we deserve more respect’ said Hooper

No fellas you don’t deserve respect, you have to earn respect. Pulling on the Wallaby jumper is an honour and a privilege but it doesn’t immediately entitle you to respect, especially from the opposition. Who cares if someone is getting insulted by the crowd? If you are paying attention to the crowd then your head isn’t in the game. The wallabies should love to be hated by the Kiwi fans, they should feed off it. It makes beating them even sweeter. We should be driven by a will to win and fueled by pure hatred. The wallabies have lost their focus and in turn lost their mongrel. Have I missed something or has the Bledisloe lost its meaning? Are we playing to win or are we just having a friendly?

The Bledisloe should have the intensity of an origin and for 80 minutes take no prisoners, both on and off the field. By asking fans to stop booing just encourages them to boo louder and more often. Could you imagine NSW asking Queenslanders to stop booing Paul Gallen. Or Queensland supporters asking NSW to lay off Wally Lewis. What next? Are we not going to boo when the Prime Minister is introduced at the next Test match? Perish the thought.

Quade has an abundance of talent but has a hide as thick as a ‘Durex Super thin Extra Sensitive Condom’. Do you think Sean Fitzpatrick showed any concern when he was booed by the Australian crowd? Every insult that was thrown his way would be absorbed and redirected as rage towards the Wallaby players. The more he was booed the better he got. He reveled in being public enemy number 1 in Australia and the favourite son in New Zealand.

Quade Cooper has put New Zealand fans offside because of a couple of on field incidents with Richie Macaw and the fact that he was born in New Zealand doesn’t help his case either.  But if they boo Quade then they are booing Australia and on the field action should be taken by the players.  The wallabies should rally around him, protect him and belt anyone that tries to intimidate him. Respect for Quade Cooper from the New Zealand fans may not eventuate until he retires. That is the nature of the game. Sean Fitzpatrick was hated until the day he retired and following this the wallaby fans finally let down their guard and admitted that he was one of the best.

I say welcome the Boos, encourage it and with every insult, bank it. Hate has no place in society but in Rugby it is a great motivator. Build it, then unleash it on the field and leave it there.

The Wallabies will always attract a lot of attention, some positive and some negative. The only way to control it, is by winning.

 

Rant On

 

The NRL CON-tract

14 Aug

Anthony-Mundine

An NRL contract walks into a bar and asks,

‘Have you seen Blake Ferguson or Josh Dugan’?

Barman says,

‘No’.

NRL contract says,

That makes two of us.

 

For years the significance of a contract or its binding nature has been whittled away to nothing.  No longer do players believe they have to honour a contract with the club or fans. Instead they throw a tantrum and attempt to pull on the heart strings by claiming ‘compassionate grounds’. All compassionate grounds gives the players is a simple out and a convenient ‘disorder’ to hide behind.

I have said it before and I will say it again,

Bullshit.

Yeah fellas, life is too hard and you need to get away or go back home. I understand that training 3 times a week and getting paid millions can be hard sometimes.

Are the current day Rugby League players kidding themselves? What a bunch of weak minded mummies boys.

The latest has been Ben Barba, Blake Ferguson and of previous months,  Josh Dugan.

Barba wants to head back to Brisbane for family reasons, off the back of some disgraceful behavior behind closed doors at the Bulldogs. Ferguson wants to head to Sydney to have the ‘puppet master’ Mundine control his life because he can’t stop drinking and touching and Dugan was sick of being told what to do at Canberra so, like the prisoners in ‘H block’, he held a ‘roof top coup’ (with none other than Blake Ferguson) until he was released from his contract

These players should  not be granted a thing. They should be told (in Dugans case ‘been told’) in no uncertain terms that they will fulfill their contract  in the top grade or in the NSW Cup. What these children, posing as men, need to understand is that they are adults. In the adult world when you sign a contract and accept a ridiculous amount of money, then you are entering into an agreement. An agreement that is legally and morally binding. It seems the only  ‘contracting’ the NRL players seem to fully commit to is an STD after  a big night out.

Now these money grubbing scumbags will sign a 5 year contract because they see the big dollar sign attached to it. But they disregard the fact that they may be away from home for 5 years. A soon as they break up with their partner, have a drinking episode, miss their mates from school or have a bad game they reach for the Kleenex and the telephone and start the process of running away.

Let me tell you fellas. There are thousands, dare I say millions of Australians living away from home because of work. They will do years away from family and friends just for an opportunity to find employment and in some cases for a promotion. Immigrants leave their families for the chance to find employment in Australia and hopefully a better life. You are being paid millions of dollars to be stay where you are and you still cry foul. You all need a good kick up the arse! Life can be easy and life can be hard. It ebbs and flows and you have to take the good with bad. If this means dealing with loss of a relationship, friendship, family or money then you ‘man up’. get help and deal with it. You don’t cash your chips in and walk away.

Ferguson if you love ‘Uncle Choc Choc’ so much get him to move to Canberra and live down there. He isn’t on contract. He is free to move anywhere. But we all know this wont happen because it doesn’t suit you or ’Don King’, sorry, I meant  Mundine. The Canberra Raiders have supported Ferguson on each of his unruly escapades. They stood by him in his darkest moments and the loyalty he shows is a request to leave the club. What a tip rat! Ferguson should just direct all questions to Mundine because it obvious that he now speaks for him

The NRL board and the clubs have made this kind of behavior acceptable. Now you can walk away from a club or be sacked for disciplinary reasons and just pick up where you left off.

Josh Dugan did just that. He and St. George Illawarra are reaping the benefits.

This has to stop.

Make these player accountable.

Ok you want a release? You got it.

But you are not able to be signed by any club in Australia. That way the fans and the club are not disadvantaged by having this player play against them a month later and it also binds the player to his contract. It further teaches them a full understanding of commitment.  The only option will be to play in the UK or switch to Rugby. No worries. See you later. They will take a bigger pay cut and chances are they won’t successfully make the switch. I would prefer to be rid of these adolescents than support their behavior.

I am not sure if anyone has noticed but for all the crap and drama that these players create off the field the standard of on field play has been woeful. I have not watched a full game in 5 weeks. In all my years of supporting Rugby League I have never been so bored. Ok I will admit Dugan has been playing well as has Ferguson, but what about the disruption to the teams. There has been weeks or months without them playing. I actually hold Ferguson responsible for NSW losing the Origin series. So for all their talent, what quality and consistency do you really get?      Barba falls into the same category. As long as this guy is happy and being pandered to then he plays well. As soon as his jenga tower falls over he is as useless as Ben Pomeroy. As a result the playing group suffers. Guys train their butts off to make the NRL only to have the likes of these guys walk in and take the spotlight with their ‘days of our lives’ behavior. I say get rid of all these  under performing and over paid Prima Donnas. They are all talented men with unreliable minds. They are selfish on and off the field and have no place in a team environment.

It is about time that the NRL start to look after their brand. At the moment they house and promote delinquent behavior in fear they are going to lose a superstar. Well sometimes you have to take a hit to move forward. The first step is to get them to honour their contracts. If they don’t then there has to be repercussions not reward.

Rant On

The Return of the Snake Oil Salesman

2 Aug

snake-oilThe thing about humans is that we always need answers. We need a reason.  Even when there isn’t one.

Religion is a popular medium in which people engage in to protect themselves against the unanswerable questions. Often they find comfort in, ‘well it’s Gods will’, ‘the lord works in mysterious way’, ‘it is a message from God to test our resolve’ and my personal favorite (usually when the priest can’t explain anything), ‘just have faith’ .

This has worked for thousands of years and for millions of people and still works for many today. But with the ever-changing world the faith in the church has begun to wane and people are seeking answers elsewhere.

Psychics have always had a place in society but in the last few years have enjoyed a resurgence. I never saw this coming. But I am sure Sinbad the psychic did.

Educated people are visiting psychics . In a desperate attempt to find answers they seek the help of a person that can see into the future. All for a small sum of $150. Bargain!  If I was the psychic the first thing I would predict is that this person has trouble saving money. If he/she is willing to pay $150 to be bullshitted to then I  would predict that this isn’t their first foray into this kind of nonsense. What is even more relevant is, that if this person could really predict the future (with even a 50% accuracy rate) I am sure they wouldn’t be dressed in hemp pants sitting in a dimly lit room in the back streets of Newtown, charging $150 bucks.

The thing I love about psychics is as soon as you ask some real questions like, ‘what are the lotto numbers going to be’ all of a sudden their psychic reception becomes cloudy.

 ‘Oh it doesn’t work that way’.  

Where have I heard that before? Sounds exactly like the local priest.

The reason it ‘doesn’t work that way’ ‘is because it is absolute bullshit. You can’t get definitives because if they give a definitive then they stand a huge chance of being wrong.   Highlighting just how far from reality they are.

 

Throughout history there has been elixirs and potions that have’ cured what ails you’. Some legitimate and most, simply sugar and water. Accounts of snake oil salesman in the western parts of the United States have always amused me.  I can’t believe how gullible people were back then.  But how far have we really come?

Naturopaths are the current day ‘snake oil salesman’. There are a flood of these quacks that push alternative treatments to the sick and incurable. Now I am sure there are some responsible Naturopaths that don’t prey on the hope of desperate people but who is regulating the industry?

This is from the

‘Australian Naturopathic Website’ FAQ’s section.

Can’t anyone start a “professional association”?

Yes, but rationalism applies here.

Can’t anyone call themselves a Naturopath?

At this point in time there is no legal restriction on use of the term Naturopath – so basically anyone can hang out a shingle and use the term to refer to themselves.

Is there any form of  statutory registration for naturopaths?

Naturopaths are not statutory registered practitioners in Australia.

Isn’t naturopathy just a placebo?

The role of the mind in the control and cure of illness and disease is the subject of some research. It is generally accepted that the mind can definitely play a role in an individual’s health. We believe that the time a naturopath takes to listen to a patient certainly aids the healing process.

The answers to these questions are laughable! Genuinely sick people come to these people for help. All I gather from this is that they are a bunch of unlicensed bullshit artists that try to convince you that alternative therapy is a solution to your problem.

But they must know what they are talking about, they are wearing a white lab coat after all!

‘Oh I see your problem’. This is common. Just buy these 5 or 6 bottles of bullshit for an over inflated price. Don’t eat bread and stay away from dairy. That should sort it out.

‘If it doesn’t work, come back and I will sell you another set of placebo related pills that won’t work either. Oh and here is the card to the psychic I go to. He is amazing. He predicted that I was going to come into money and ever since then I haven’t gone wrong.’

Steve Jobs is a guy that is currently reaping the benefits of natural therapies.

Jobs refused surgery after diagnosis and for nine months after, favoring instead dietary treatments and other alternative methods. Isaacson says that when he asked Jobs why he had resisted it, Jobs said “I didn’t want my body to be opened…I didn’t want to be violated in that way.” His early resistance to surgery was apparently incomprehensible to his wife and close friends, who continually urged him to do it.

But there seemed to be more to his resistance than just fear of surgery.

“I think that he kind of felt that if you ignore something,” Isaacson told CBS “if you don’t want something to exist, you can have magical thinking.

 

Jobs was a brilliant man and a visionary which probably made him susceptible to this kind of thinking but who was the person enabling this nonsense? Michael Jackson’s doctor has been jailed for over diagnosing prescription drugs that killed Jackson. Where is the bloke that prescribed the juices and bee sting therapy to jobs? Isn’t that person just as responsible?

I have heard Naturopaths are great at giving out dietary advice. I will give you the inside word. Book an appointment with a Dietician/nutrionist and you will far better off.

 

If these psychics, naturopaths or alternative medicines give people hope or comfort then why do I care? I care because it only serves to dilute the person’s reality and in turn takes them further away from real healing.  To be able to understand your problems physically or emotionally and face them will serve you better in the long run than hiding behind witch doctors, tarot card readers and snake oil salesman.

At the end of the day people want to be lied to. It is easier that admitting the truth or dealing with reality.  The reality is there will always be the inexplicable, shit just happens and you just have to put one foot in front of the other keep moving forward until that day comes.

Next time you think about visiting a psychic or a naturopath, take the money you were going to spend and donate it to the homeless or even better donate it to the cancer council. I can guarantee that money will be well spent.

Don’t smoke, drink in moderation, eat in moderation and exercise.

How is that for a definitive?

 

Rant on,

 

Johnny