Learning Science

20 07 2015

There have been many theories on why people are not accepting science as fact, some of the theories are quite complex, such as the one about having a religious center in our brains, which might be true, but would you consider this?

Go back to when you were a child, do you recall singing Silent Night, or Away in a manger, at a very young age?

Do you then remember getting to your teens, and falling in love with songs that contained religious themes? Songs that called out to angels, or spoke of divine intervention bringing two lovers together?

Now in contrast, how many songs about science do you remember?

I’m sure you’ll have to think hard about this, and although you may identify a few, how many were you passionate about? how many did you fall in love with?

I think having more songs about science, which even small children will understand, is what’s needed to get more kids away from religion and into fact based science.

But producing songs which people will remember, songs that become ear-worms like Stock, Aitken and Waterman productions, such as “Never Gonna Give You Up” as an example, is essential.

Wolfie Rankin.

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A word about placement.

16 11 2013

We have a lovely cafe, deli nearby, which sells a lot of fresh produce, and I normally go there to pick up a nice big sandwich, or some chicken or maybe a pie, which I’ll often take home and freeze to eat later that week.

but they have some items which I’d never buy, fresh liquorice, which looks delicious, an assortment of sweet rolls, and a rack of fresh bread.

I’d love to buy it but won’t, because it’s on the counter, where people will cough and sneeze over, little kids who just had their finger up their noses, will prod, and as for the bread on the rack behind the counter, it’s just at the right height to be farted on.

Now this isn’t some sort of an attack on one shop, as I love the place, indeed I’m a regular customer, I have been for years. No, This is something which is common to a lot of similar shops.

And the problem that I have as a customer is that I’d really like to tell them how I feel, but don’t wish to offend.

I am uncomfortable with saying “I’d really like to buy this stuff, but…”

So I’ve written it here, because it’s incredibly common to a lot of places, I dare say it’s worldwide.

It can’t just be me who has thought about this, surely?





The Irrits

13 02 2013

The other day Carol Duncan played a song which I had never heard before, It was “State of the art” by Gotye”.

And the song is about one of those Hammond organs which they tended to flog a lot on television in the 70s and 80s.

The video, on the other hand, is a weird sci-fi cartoon where this computerised instrument takes over the family and turns them into robots.

Ever since I heard the song, it has become an earworm which won’t go away, I think because it touched a nerve.

You see, in the 70s and 80s, I knew this family, I’ll call them the Irrits, because that’s what they gave me, sorry, but I couldn’t stand them, and because one of them may Google themselves one day I’ll change their first names too.

And this is why, firstly I had nothing in common with them, The Irrits had four kids who I mostly found annoying.

I liked my own company, but suddenly, and often over Christmas holidays in the Aussie Summer, they would arrive at our holiday house and park their caravan down the back, I’m not really sure how a family of five fitted into a caravan, but they managed it.

They had all the luxuries at home though, they had a great car, and a house, which only got larger as they moved onwards and upwards, with a pool and a spa… and the six car garage… but then they did run a taxi service, so that’s fair.

They had the biggest black and white TV that anyone could afford, and a superb quadraphonic Hi-Fi system.

The lead Woman of this Family, Let’s call her Shazza, liked to boast that when she bought the Hi-Fi, that the Man in the shop said “You must really love your music” to which she replied “Oh yes, We love Country and Western” and the poor Man was nearly sick, “You mean you’re going to play Country and Western… on THIS!?”

Are you beginning to see some faults? bare with me.

Oh, there was that organ too, the amazing organ which could make all these incredible sounds, but of course the lead Man, let’s call him Bazza, Couldn’t play a thing.

The house, as fancy as it was, was crammed with the worst kitch at the time, a clock which looks like a cat whose eyeballs and tail would move, little animal figurines, string pictures on the walls, paintings of sunsets.

My Dad couldn’t see the forest for the trees, Dad loved Bazza, thought he was the dogs bollocks, But Mum saw right through the lot, and so did I.

You know how they got all that money?

They barely ate, that’s right, the three teenage boys were thin as a rake, and when they visited us, Mum would put on a banquet, food was loaded onto the table and it would all be sucked up as if by a hoover minutes later.

I remember once when I was a little kid, they looked through every drawer in my bedroom to find money, I was naive then, I thought they were looking for toys or something to play with, but I don’t blame them, I suppose if I was that hungry, I may have taken a risk myself.

We visited them once, and I was offered a drink of cordial, Shazza had diluted it so much that it may as well have been tap water, in fact I said it out loud “This cordial takes like water” well did I get scolded for that, By Mum… it was something she raised a lot when she was angry with me over the years… but eventually I said “Mum, it was the truth wasn’t it?” and she never picked at me over it again.

Once when They visited us, Their daughter, the youngest, really needed a drink, Shazza told me that if I give her a drink of cordial, not to make it too strong, did I listen? pigs to that, it was probably the best drink of cordial the poor girl had ever had.

Another time when we were sitting in their kitchen, their daughter very gingerly asked Her Mum if she could have some BBQ Shapes, a snack biscuit which is popular here in Australia, and often a kid would just take the whole box and eat them all in front of the TV, I know I did.

Shazza took a babies plastic bowl, opened the box, took THREE out and put them in the bowl, and sent the poor kid away with that. My jaw almost hit the floor.

Their clothes were all moth eaten, their shoes were from the local tip or the op shop.

Mum witnessed Shazza washing the dishes once, barely a dribble of Embassy detergent in luke warm water.

When we went on holidays to Queensland (From Melbourne) Mum would pack a hamper full of sandwiches and there’d be a thermos of hot water for tea, coffee or cup-a-soup, there was always an assortment of cool drinks and chips and lollies. we would stop around six in the evening at a reasonably priced motel, to bed down.

When they went, they took no food, despite having five people in the car, they would exist on a few cans of coke and I remember Shazza saying that they pulled over to where a bloke was selling fruit, they bought an entire box of passionfruit¬† and ate those, nothing else for the whole journey… and they never stopped, a full 24hr drive, non-stop.

I don’t know how they existed like that, I know we didn’t have that much, although we had the extra house… We ate well and our clothing was always good… though I use that word lightly after a review of some of the photos from back then.

How do you step from the front door of a huge home wearing the thinnest, oldest and cheapest clothing?

I’m pleased to say that the rest of my family were lovely and I often enjoyed being with them, but the best thing about the Irrits was when they went home.

Wolfie!





Being Boring.

28 01 2013
Kids typing “I’m so bored” on twitter, holy shit.

I survived the 70s, B&W TV with Four Stations and AM Radio.

You’ve got THE INTERNET now,

THE WHOLE FUCKING INTERNET!!!,

Can’t you arsehats find anything online to keep you amused?
Holy fucking shit!

Whenever I see “I’m so bored” on twitter I feel a strong urge to bitchslap whoever typed it.





Do we have to grow up?

8 09 2012

I could pad this story out with a lot of froth, but I would rather get to the point.

We find ourselves in 2012, We feel that we don’t need kids to enhance our lives with kids, it’s best to forgo breeding and just be ourselves.

And what I see is that people who liked certain things as a kid, haven’t grown out of those things, they haven’t been as pressured to do so, as with other generations.

I have friends who are into Furry, they dress up as animals and go to conventions, I think in the 80s this sort of thing would have been sniggered at far far more than it is now, a lot of people simply accept it.

Because so many have remained child-like in some ways, and it’s normal to have adults collect pokemon, ninja turtles, simpsons, doctor who and others.

Mind you, it was also much more difficult years ago, as there were very few shops specialising in this sort of merchandise.

I have been buying TARDISES (TARDII?) from a shop online which sells science fiction and fantasy items, lately.

I think We’ve started to allow ourselves to play more, and I think somewhere a switch has flicked and turned off the idea of having kids… we are the kids, why do there need to be more?

Possible?





Life without kids.

13 08 2012

I just saw a tweet which said “Can you be happy without kids”.
It’s so strange, even now, when people are beginning to loosen up a bit about “lifestyle choices” that there is still a streak of conservatism where anyone who doesn’t bond with someone by the time they’re twenty five, and reproduce, is a loser.

Well I don’t fit that mould, and I know plenty of others don’t either.

Having kids is easy, mostly, but then supporting them for the next twenty or thirty years, is not.

I for one, never saw myself as being “a good husband” as I love my freedom far too much.

I don’t like babies, I don’t like anything to do with babies… unless they’re a baby animal, of the type which isn’t human.

Being a night person, I didn’t want to wake up at the crack of dawn to get the kids off to school each day, and I didn’t want to pour money into looking after them… school books, bedding, lighting, a computer, food, water… endless resources which I’d rather spend on myself and my dog and cat.

Nor did I want to worry about where they were at nights when they came into their teens.

This is my life, and it’s not perfect, but it’s ok, Having kids would not make it better, nor would having a partner make it better either.

There are lots of people out there who have decided not to have kids, in favour of living out their lives.

Yes there have been a few times when I’ve thought about it, but I’m a practical person, and when I think of all the costs, the blood, sweat and tears, which I’d need to pump into it, well no.

When I walk out of the supermarket after being exposed to screaming kids, I’m thankful they’re not mine.

Wolfie!





Considering religion and kids

25 05 2011

Religion, like McDonalds, believes in getting to kids early, in order to subdue their minds to their way of thinking.

I met a teacher online some time ago who said that it was harder to get students to think for themselves rather than simply learn, and I think he’s right, so many of us will refer to a book, and point something out and say “The author says this, therefore it’s true” and it might not be, there are cases where a book has been printed, and a mistake has been found, and fixed in the next edition… but that last book with the incorrect item in it could remain in the family or school library for years.

Not so much of a problem if you’re getting your information online, but it still pays to check your facts, whether you’re a scientist or journalist, or just a random person looking for important information which needs to be accurate.

I think we should teach kids, at a very young age that facts are important, and not to believe it just because an adult told you so, which kids often do, and grownups will often do too.

I would like to walk into a class where there are very young kids and draw two circles on the blackboard, one pink and one blue, To point at the pink circle and say “this circle is the blue one”, with a strong tone in my voice, seemingly very sure of my own facts and importance.

Now kids would immediately see that I was wrong.

I wonder how long it would take for me to be corrected?

Then I would ask, if nobody said anything, “What’s wrong with what I just said?”

The plan would then be to say that sometimes people are not always right, sometimes they seem to know what they’re talking about, but sometimes, we can still be wrong, and this is the nature of people.

Sometimes kids are wrong, grownups can be wrong, the police, politicians, priests… and sometimes books can be wrong too, it’s very important to think for yourself and not be told “this is how things are”, to have an open, questioning mind is a very good thing to have. Some people don’t want you to have an open and questioning mind because it upsets them… and I’d like you to think about why that might be.

Then I’d wave and leave, and hope that I’ve planted a seed.

Wolfie!