Wednesday, 14 March 2007

Cuff medicine

This morning, as is my wont, I was ambling my way through the Sydney Morning Herald website over breakfast. I keep passing edicts against mixing crumbs and keyboards. I keep flouting these edicts too, but at least I don't mix crumbs and keyboards with bedsheets. No. I refuse to sink that low.

The Sydney Morning Herald website, these days, is a maze of lurid sensationalism, through which one navigates one's compass off to locate decent coverage of the NSW election. Occasionally, as today, I find myself lured down one of the lurid byways: the lurid byway, in this morning's case, was one of those far-too-patronised-for-its-own-good SMH blogs and it did its enticing with the promise of my instant indigation and by using the phrase "sex etiquette", which promised instant indignation plus a French word almost rhyming with petticoat.

So I was lured, and there was nothing for it but to plough ahead, and savour my indignation. It came awful quick. The blogmeister's first paragraph was enough: "Modern manners are in strife. Chivalrous men are a dying breed, atrocious table manners are no longer shrugworthy and mobile phones have given a new meaning to sloth."

Atrocious table manners, I can take 'em or leave 'em; mobile phones, they're the tool of Beelzebub, although it's unclear how sloth fits in; but this mourning of the death of chivalry: puh-leeeaassse. You want courtly love, lady? It's all yours. I, for one, am just as happy to trade sitting on a pedestal and having my hanky retrieved for being allowed out of the house on my own. Chivalry schmivellry, I say.

Obviously this particular rant could be a lot longer, could refer to the blog's repeated use of the phrase "biological clock", could be generally rantier, but instead I tell you this: muttering invectives against this far-too-patronised-for-its-own-good SMH blog, I chomped down hard on my orange. Orange juice sprayed in all directions, bedaubing my poor keyboard, and my equally poor eyelid, which immediately set up an angry red protest, as if citric acid weren't good for sensitive skin or something. I stumbled towards the bathroom. The cuff of my shirt sleeve caught on the doorknob, and tore, and I fell, and conked my knee on a malignant bit of furniture. This, I tells ye, this I blame on the lurid byways of the SMH website. The price I pay for not just buying the newspaper.

I'm just lucky there wasn't any shining armour lying around. My trouser leg, someone else's greave: a potentially lethal combination.

17 comments:

Mark said...

Here's a shortcut to the political cheese at the end of the SMH maze (mmmm, metaphor omelette):

2007 Election Polls.

The whole site is another maze in itself but without all the annoying ads.

Mark said...

Oops, I just realised you were after NSW information. That link only has federal stuff (I think). Still, it's a good site!

Karen said...

Wow, you do like to hit the hard stuff early in the morning, don't you? I used to read Miranda Devine and Gerard Henderson to make myself that angry, but it wasn't very good for my blood pressure, so I don't anymore. Unless the column is about something that makes me very cross!

The only thing funnier than someone ranting about "the good ol' days" is a 19 year old (or however old she's supposed to be) ranting about "the good ol' days". And, what's more, she completely fails to deliver on the promise of salaciousness in the title. That said, although I don't draw the line at keyboards and crumbs in bed, I am a big fan of good manners among strangers. It makes things easier for we very shy folk.

Incidentally, great deployment of "grease".

alexis said...

Yay! Mark! How ya doin' up there? Funnily enough, I'm also interested in the Federal Election, so will make the most of that there link. That beloved of yours buys a mean chocolate frog.

alexis said...

Good manners amongst strangers, but of course! But the idea that good manners for gals are the same as good manners for chaps doesn't seem to have crossed the SATC blogsters' minds. Actually, I'd like to shove modern etiquette up its own silver-plated serviette ring and just figure out for myself how to act in a way that regards other people's feelings.

TimT said...

The only thing funnier than someone ranting about "the good ol' days" is a 19 year old (or however old she's supposed to be) ranting about "the good ol' days".

I agree completely. Back in my day, youngsters waited until they were 20 years old before signing their soul over to the Tory Party and preaching the gospel of the free market.

Before then, it was all sex, drugs, rock'n'roll, and more sex, let me tell you.

Karen said...

Alexis,

One of the most active SATC bloggers used to live with my sister and she is not representative of anyone but herself, I can assure you! So don't worry- it's not an accurate reflection of what people really think, given the veil of anonymity. I hate the "boy blog" more- and the author of that doesn't even have the excuse of being 21.

All those Tory fundraisers do interfere with the time one has for sex and drugs and rock 'n' roll, don't they? Although Boris Johnson seems to find a way around it...

Karen said...

Alexis,

One of the most active SATC bloggers used to live with my sister and she is not representative of anyone but herself, I can assure you! So don't worry- it's not an accurate reflection of what people really think, given the veil of anonymity. I hate the "boy blog" more- and the author of that doesn't even have the excuse of being 21.

All those Tory fundraisers do interfere with the time one has for sex and drugs and rock 'n' roll, don't they? Although Boris Johnson seems to find a way around it...

Karen said...

Oh God, I'm sorry to post the same message so many times. I kept getting an error message, so I didn't think it had gone through.
I am very computer illiterate, you know.

alexis said...

I deleted one of them, Karen, and then belatedly realised that posterity is better served by the repetition. The boy blog is HORRENDOUS. I stumbled onto it the other day, and was almost wretching within minutes.

NB: don't mean to malign all the contributors to SATC (realise I did for a moment back there, but I retract). Some of the comments are right on the money. It's just the overwhelming feeling, lurking round them parts, is of a pathetic teenage prurience fueled by too much bad internet.

Too much bad internet? Is that conceptually possible?

Karen said...

Yes, posterity simply must know that I cannot use my computer properly- a wealth of user errors every hour!
To tell you the truth, I hadn't looked at either of those blogs for a long time until you linked there this morning and I certainly didn't have the patience to scroll through the comments, so I have no idea what was said. Nothing very edifying, I'm sure. I do not mind if you malign its contributors in the slightest.
The "boy blog" always made me wretch, but the main reason why this computer has never served on over there in recent history is because of a charming little entry in which he discussed the "grief" he feels over the abortions his previous girlfriends have had and how women really need to take this "grief" into account more. In the comments thread he and his cohorts told the female contributors that they had no right to respond because the subject "wasn't about them". That bursts my blood vessels more than any ludicrous "sex etiquette".

alexis said...

Bleueueueueueugh. Last time I visited the boy wonder, he was doing his best to come across all sensitive and open-minded by proposing that perhaps our aversion to women's body hair is culturally constucted (surely not!). This elicited a riot of blokes claiming that they would never ever ever ever ever ever ever consider copulating with a lass of the unshorn variety. Which is just fine by me.

Karen said...

I just noticed that I typed "served" instead of "surfed"- I hope there's nothing Freudian about that!
Boy wonder reminds me of the sort of man I always wind up being stuck next to at parties. First he demonstrates what a man of the world he is, then he edifies me by telling me that what I do is a load of cod's wallop, just in case I hadn't realised yet. Of course I am immediately "saved" and enrol in an accounting degree forthwith. Oh how I detest boorish men!

It's funny how hair, the most ephemerally lovely part of a person, is seen as some sort of contaminant, isn't it? A previous boyfriend of mine preferred it when I was unshorn and would be deeply wounded whenever I altered my state. The blokes who would never ever ever ever copulate with an unshorn woman are just expressing their insecurity about themselves- that little machine whirring away in their heads constantly- the "what would my mates think?" machine.

Maria said...

'Lexi, you haven't even hit some of the worst (and most puerile) stuff yet, and you're already wretching.

Oh dear.

(Sam Brett? She's in her early 20s.)

Maria said...

My own comments on SATC here - sad to say, could have made them a lot worse!

Must say, some good things did come of that blog, there was a time when they ran a competition on it and I won a month's supply of Nudie Juice!

It's not ALL bad.

alexis said...

Ha! Maria, your caveat lector over at orangejuicesnobbery.blogspot.com is the funniest thing I did read in many a number of time units. Thank you.

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