Saturday, February 29, 2020


Staff  face contagion of  Coalition induced  job  losses .
CANBERRA: There are  unconfirmed reports  that  the  Australia Broadcasting Commission  chair    Ita  Buttrose went  green about the gills soon after mastigophorer  and  mimp  performer  Scott  from  Marketing  posted  the  above  odd  tweet .

The  selfie  related  to  the  PM and  Communications  Minister Paul Fletcher dropping  in   for  a  chat ,  a bit like the recent outrageous AFP  raid ,  the  key  focus  said  to  be rural and  regional  services .  Really ?  What specifically ? The  ABC already delivers  a  fantastic   service in   these  areas . Is this  a move on the government's behalf  to gain   support of  a certain  red  headed  failed  battered sav seller  who  includes  the ABC  and   the  bush   in  widespread, erratic  rants  that   scare  the  increasingly  useless  Nationals ?

Meanwhile, the Federal Chief Medical Officer Professor Brendan Murphy warned   that  in light of  the  growing  Coronavirus threat to the nation , Ms. Buttrose   should not stand  so close to  ScoMo, who even  mixes with   Kiwis . Furthermore, she  should  not  shake  hands  with  him  or  any other  members  of   his   bikie   gang  backers  who  want  the national  broadcaster  emasculated  so  that  the  dumbing  down  and  plundering  of  the  nation  can  continue  at  a   far  greater   pace.


The June  Dally-Watkins Memorial  Deportment School  for  Curlews has quietly opened  on  Magnetic Island , North Queensland . Aspiring  female Curlews  not  wanting to  be killed  by feral  cats, run  down by cars  and  bitten to death  by  dogs   are  offered  the  opportunity  to   participate  in  a   new   sophisticated   and    safer   life .
Even though her legs are not crossed like those in the Royal family, an eager Curlew is shown above  attending an art appreciation  class  at  the school .The course  teaches Curlews  how to  regularly gate crash  indoor   high  society  gatherings on  the island , described as Townsville's Jewel in the Crown , and  pass themselves  off  as  rich  , desirable   and refined   young  ladies aware of the nicer  things  in   life .     
With  a  sprig  of flowers behind her  ear, this demure Curlew indicates she is not available for Marriage at  First Sight .

A June  Dally-Watkins spokeswoman  told  Little Darwin's  social reporter Ned Scruff  that , sadly, the  deportment  and etiquette  school  is  the only hope for  Curlews to  escape  the  cruel  law of  the bungle that  permeates the  Townsville City Council , Parks and Wildlife ( how's that for a  misnomer ? )  and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park  Authority  when  it  comes to the protection  of  Curlews and  other  wildlife  on  the  island . 

Then  there  is  the increased  bleaching of  coral in the surrounding waters.   Shown below is an official invitation sent to this blog from the June Dally-Watkins  School  to  attend  a  baby clam  bake  soiree  on  Magnetic Island .
In other parts of Australia , where Bush Stone-Curlews were   once  common, steps are being taken  to  protect  , even  try and   reintroduce,  the  birds , whose wailing cry  at  night , according to regional Aboriginal myths , has  many meanings, including  the  scream  of   a  woman  or  child . 

Friday, February 28, 2020


The Royal Society for the Protection of Curlews (RSPC),  has called on Elton John to raise the  disappearance  of  a mutilated   Curlew  from the Townsville  CBD . Badly scratched , with a large hole in its beak , this was the sad looking  bird  before  it  recently vanished,  without  any official  announcement  , not  noticed  by  the  goosed,  plucked  , battered  and deep fried   local  media .    
Angry RSPC spokesman Buck Mulligan  said  he  wants  the great entertainer , suffering from walking  pneumonia , to   ask  the audience for help to locate  the Curlew  when  he  first  walks on stage in the city's new  stadium  on his last  tour down  under  along   the  Yellow  Brick  Bruce  Highway . He would also  like the  Rocket Man  to deliver a verbal  rocket at all  those  responsible  for  the  long neglect of the  Curlew and its  final  cruel  removal.

There is a sneaking suspicion that  in the  frenzied activity to tart up  the  CBD for the stadium opening , the metal signal box   on  which  the   Curlew nested  was  removed  and  is  now on  its way to   a  Japanese  scrapmetal   yard, ending up as  complimentary razor  blades  on  cruise ships .     

Thursday, February 27, 2020


Alarming   spots   in   knight's  water  (not  a  Wassermann  test ).

Our Shipping Reporter , the only one north of the   Coogee Aquarium in which a shark coughed   up  a  human arm , this morning  reluctantly   informed us that former Queensland  Liberal  Party leader , Sir Thomas Alfred  Hiley  , is experiencing  more  indignities.

The waterfront roundsman  recently exclusively reported that Sir Thomas , a  former Queensland Treasurer , is mouldering away in  bushes  on  the Magnetic Island  foreshore-full of  water...actually  a  lifeboat  off  a  dredge named  after  him . 
 When  the  sympathetic Shipping  Reporter  called  on Sir Thomas to see if he had been  baled out by the  party faithful , he  discovered  a  truly distressing  scene . While there appeared to be less water in the bilge , visible  was  part of  a  what  appeared  to  be  the  workings  of  a  toilet  cistern !!!The object which  could have  shocked  maiden aunts, thankfully, had  vanished , probably souvenired  by  an  unwashed  backpacker .
And  TADPOLES !!!. Yep , tadpoles , possibly   cane toads , sunning themselves in the shallows . This  surely is the last thing  Sir Thomas  would  want to see in  his  water, holding  his own and  fine  tuning   the  state's  rubbery  budget , while smoking  a  Cuban  cigar . Another  of  Sir  Thomas's  specimen slides  from the Townsville  University  Hospital's  true  blue  rare  casebook  follows.


Another  piscatorial photograph by Abra-a  giant  mural  on the wall of a building  in  Cairns , North Queensland .  

Tuesday, February 25, 2020


The extremely busy ant world  is  undergoing  puzzling  changes. The  site of seething  ant  nests - photographed and   previously  posted  by nature watcher Vallis- has   undergone   major   and    baffling   changes .  
Instead of  masses of   large  ants (above),some with wings,   covering  an   area in which  there were  open , ground level entrance  nests ,   new   volcano  shaped     ones (below)  were constructed  by   fewer and   much  smaller looking   ants.  The building material   looked  like magma  spewed  up  from  the depths or what is known as volcanic bombs , molten material blasted into the air that cools and falls down to earth in  a  heap . 

Following heavy rain , the volcanoes and their vents disappeared , as  did the ants .  Weeks later,  no  visible  nests  and  no ants , the site gradually  covered in thick grass . It seemed the ants had  relocated or there  was a  marauding midnight  anteater  in   the  yard. 
An intensive search  of  the yard  failed to  find  any area of  extensive   ant activity  like the one which  had vanished .  Puzzled by this  situation ,the blogger  exposed himself  to attack by a dengue carrying mosquito  by   bending over  the original site , covered  in a mat of couch like grass ,  and  closely examined  the  former  pad ,  without  the  aid  of  a  Sherlock  Holmes  magnifying glass. 

 Nothing . Wait a minute , was that a  tiny ant ? Yes . And  there was another climbing  up  the  blogger's leg . In  the  subterranean world  beneath the  thick grass  there   appears  to  be  a   whole  new   world  adapting  to rapidly  changing  conditions . 


Made  part of  the British  Crown Colony  in 1884, it maintained its independence on October 4 , l966, becoming the Kingdom of  Lesotho ,  surrounded by South Africa . A  l947  first day cover  from  Little  Darwin Collection.

Monday, February 24, 2020


Abra  photograph taking in  mudflats , reflections, rainclouds.

Sunday, February 23, 2020


Front of handmade postcard made On Active Service  out of cardboard, dated 22/5/16 , addressed in faded pencil  to Mr Jack Forsyth , Wharf Manager , Outer Harbour ( Port Adelaide), South Australia . Listed on the back  are names of Troop Mates  with  rank, number  and   their home-town , most  from  South Australia ,  some  from   Victoria  and  two  from  Liverpool, England. It would be interesting  to  know  what  happened to  all  these men .
It is  from the estate of  Arthur F. Forsyth , Matilda Street , Peterhead , Port Adelaide , who served in the  Light  Horse  Brigade ,  survived the war, and  was  employed  on   the   Port  Adelaide  waterfront . 

Another  interesting item  is  the    1917  postcard with the  studio real   photo (below )  taken in Cairo, Egypt ,  of  a  young Light Horseman , W.Woodrof ,  nicknamed Billy Bluegum    after the Norman Lindsay koala bear .  He is  wearing  a  belt with  a  Turkish  soldier's  buckle , presumably a souvenir  or   a  studio   prop.The postcard was  sent by Forsyth , with individual  kisses to his wife and  children in  Matilda  Street , with  a  request  to  respond  with  a  long  letter . More items of  interest will  be  run  from  the  Forsyth Collection . 


Photos  by   Ric  Shaw .

Saturday, February 22, 2020


World   exclusive  by our  Big Apple  and Tiny Truffle  correspondent with a soon to  be  audited  expense  account. 

President Trump  today claimed the  FBI has a  huge file  proving  that one of the world's most influential people, actor and  documentary film producer , Michael Moore , has been  conspiring  with   the  Russians  to  influence  the  upcoming presidential  election.
And  in  a shock  development,  Michael Moore  freely admitted he has been engaged in  secret  talks  with  Russian President  Vladimir  Putin . 
"I am making a  remake of  the mad  movie  The  Russians Are  Coming , with a modern twist ," Moore  confessed." It will undergo a name change - The Russians  Are  In  Trump  Towers". One of  those luxury towers is in Hawaii-wonder if  ScoMo  was  entertained   there?  
In search of  Russian actors, Moore  said he went to Moscow . On arrival , he had been   arrested  by  the KGB   and  taken  to  see  President  Putin.
 Surprisingly, Putin had been wildly enthusiastic  about the project- as  long as he could play the part of  the  submarine skipper in the  new  version of the  film . He  had  kindly offered to supply a  nuclear powered  sub  as  a  prop which would  be  moored  off   Coney  Island , New York  . 

 Putin even offered to invest in the film as  he  has a few  idle  billion  dollars here and there .  He is said to  be possibly  the  richest man in the world-200 billion !!!-which  raises a  lot of questions ,  makes Democrat  Bloomberg look like a  pauper,  but  could  just  be  CIA  faux  news .
 According to  Moore, the  Russian  leader  strongly  denied Russia  had played any part in the election  of  Donald Trump . He  had  regaled Moore with  strange stories  about  being pissed on  by a Koala  bear at a G20 meeting in  Brisbane  and   being   shirtfronted   by  a  bozo  called  Tony  Abbott .

Moore  told Little Darwin he is  considering using   some   footage   from his much acclaimed,   award  winning  documentary Where to Invade Next , which  a  critic praising  the  work  said   would  almost surely cast Moore's  detractors at  Fox News and  similar sinkholes  into  consternation.   
While on the subject of Australia , the  multi award winning  filmmaker  said  he planned  to use  Aussie crayfish, piling  up because of the  Coronavirus  affect on the Chinese   market,  in  a lobster processing factory  scene in  the  film,  which  is  designed to prevent  Trump   being   re-elected , reducing him to a  reject   shrimp  too  small  to  throw  on  the  barbie ... a line obviously lifted  from  Paul  Hogan.

Friday, February 21, 2020


Les Penhall , seen here with his wife , Scottie, was in Darwin when the Japanese bombed the front door to Australia on February 19,1942. There was a large ceremony  in  Darwin  this  week  to  mark the 78th anniversary of  the   attack  in which   243 people were killed  , more than 300 wounded , eight ships   sunk  and others  beached , much  of   the  town  destroyed. 

From  the  Little Darwin  files was retrieved a   cassette   containing Penhall's eyewitness  account of  the  bombing. Just 18 years of age, he had arrived in  Darwin from Adelaide  on November 29, 1941, employed  as a clerk in the Native Affairs  Branch.

Each day he collected the mail from the Darwin Post Office  where he knew all the staff who were from Adelaide. These included Mr and Mrs  Bald and their  daughter, Iris, she having worked in  the  same  telephone  accounts section as  Les  at  the Adelaide  Post  Office .  

On Boxing day, war tension mounting,  he went on a grand adventure with bushman  Bill Harney  and  two  Aborigines  in  a  small  dinghy to the  Delissaville  settlement ,  across the harbour, to assess the situation  there should   it  need  be  evacuated. 

On the fateful  morning of February  19, Penhall made arrangements with Iris Bald and two of her girlfriends to meet at The Star  Theatre  that night with him and some of  his  mates. 

Shortly before 10am, the Japanese attacked . As he ran from the back of  his office  bombs were falling in many  places. He saw a bomb fall on the post office less than 90 feet from him. Nine of the staff  including Iris were killed in the   raid. A  bomb  fell  into  a  trench in which staff  were  sheltering . 
Today there is a memorial plaque on the floor of parliament house marking the spot where  the  staff  were  killed .

As Les  dived down the nearby cliff ,  a  piece of shrapnel tore a hole in the sleeve  of his shirt and caused  a slight wound on his left arm.  Zeros machine gunned the  Darwin Oval aircraft   battery opposite the Hotel Darwin.

In his account , Penhall continued : " I could hear the bullets  actually zipping through  the tree tops , and just kept my bloody head down. Funny thing, all I really thought  of down there was to protect my head . I did not want to be hit in the head . " 

There were numerous deafening  explosions , loud gunfire, the  scream of engines. He saw the  destroyer  USS Peary , bombed and  burning ,  sink  with the loss of  80 men, including  the captain, Lieutenant-Commander  John M. Bermingham."It  just slowly, slowly sank into  the sea . I have a memory of  the anti-aircraft gun, an oerlikon, I think , on the stern , still firing as the ship went  under the water .   An  amazing  sight!" 

He went on to say a painting he subsequently saw    depicting the sinking of  the Peary  going  down stern first  did not accord with his vivid memory of the vessel's  final moments. 

The harbour was alight .The British Motorist , an oil tanker, was hit and  the oil   set  alight by  incendiary  bullets fired by the Zeros .  A lot of men were burnt in the  water, buried  on the foreshore between Government House and the wharf.

Evacuated to Alice Springs , which became the civil  administrative centre of the Territory , Penhall helped draw up a list of  surviving crewmembers from ships sunk in Darwin , evacuated south  in convoys, many of them Chinese and Malays . 
During the month he spent in  Alice  the  US   General Douglas MacArthur, his wife, and son , arrived in town , having   fled  the Philippines .    On going south, General MacArthur  made  his  famous  "I shall return " to the Philippines  statement .

Penhall went on to become a signaller with the 74th Mobile Anti-Aircraft  Searchlight Battery on Horn Island , in the Torres Strait, Australia's most   northerly  operational   airfield, said  to have been   the second most bombed place after  Darwin . It  had  first  been  bombed  on  March 14,  not  long after Darwin .

Mrs Penhall, nee Effie Scott, at the age of  18 ,  became  a  wireless  telegraphist  at the RAAF  headquarters in an old Toorak  mansion  in Melbourne .  Everybody there was   sworn to secrecy.   It  was a centre of great activity with encoded messages  flying backwards and forwards to the islands  and  London . As the RAAF called everybody by their surname, she became Scottie and it remained in vogue  thereafter, she  not  liking  Effie .        

Thursday, February 20, 2020


Regarded as  New Zealand's unofficial poet  laureate,  relentless  fighter  for  women , penal reform , home rule for Scotland and Ireland , animal rights , prohibition ,   Jessie  Mackay, 1864-1938, above,  prompted  the  following  poem by   Helena  Henderson,  another Kiwi  activist ,  mentioned  recently  in  this  blog, when  she  died.

The daughter of Scottish parents , her father a shepherd, Mackay was  taught  at home until  14, when she went  to  Christchurch  to  train as  a schoolteacher,  serving in  small rural schools until 1898, when she was forced to leave teaching  due to illness  and  take  up  journalism .

The   New Zealand Dictionary of  Biography states  she wrote a  fortnightly column for  the Otago Witness ,which she did for  30 years, and in 1906 was appointed lady editor of the Canterbury Times .

As a freelance writer she contributed to the NZ Women's Christian Temperance Union ; British feminist journals such as  Jus Suffragii,Votes for Women  and the Common Cause .

She and her  sister Georgina kept a vegetarian house . Jessie refused to wear  feathers and furs, condemned  the  fur trade and   hunting , opposed animal experiments  and  vivisection .
 In  her poems she defended the Maoris  and said the Maori Wars had been caused  by  Pakeha  greed .  

In 1921 she set out  for  England, Ireland, Scotland and the Continent, attended the  Irish Race Congress  in  Paris as a  NZ representative of the Society  for Self-Determination  for Ireland.

Other  issues she campaigned for included  the need for women in parliament, better pay for women  and  the  need  for  women  in  the  police  force.

Some of  her poems were  run in the Sydney Bulletin   and   she corresponded with  Australian writer and   critic  Nettie  Palmer who ,with husband, Vance, were  influential  figures in  literary circles.


Vallis photograph .

Wednesday, February 19, 2020


With X-ray vision , our waterfront roundsman , the only one north of Gotham City , made  some interesting  observations in  torpid  Townsville. First off , the fact that modern reporters are a  temperance  mob  was revealed by them not reporting that  the unfortunately named  Corona  Extra  beer  was  on  special in the city,  Droughtmaster a  drop cheaper . Japanese  and  German  grog  also  on  offer.
 During the week,  a raspy voiced  spokesman for the Minerals Council   warned it would be disastrous to the economy  if  Chinese owned or  crewed  bulk carriers   could  not  dock  in  Queensland  due  to  the  Coronavirus outbreak .
In view of  this warning ,  you would  think  the  scribes might  get the local angle , check  the  port   to  see   what arrangements, if any,  have been drawn up to  handle  Chinese vessels , or ones  manned by  Chinese.   That   container vessel  in port  with CMA CGM  in large letters on the  hull  , could it be  Chinese  ? Nope.  A French conglomerate which took over  Australian National Lines. The ship is named   Flora Delmas , which does not  sound  oriental  anyway .

 Not running on all  cylinders, the stop navigation light on his car  also  playing up, the Shipping Reporter called  at  a  busy  Queensland X-Ray  service  and there on the reception desk was  a  sign  relating to" Novel Coronavirus" asking   anyone who had a recent connection with  China  to make  this  known  to staff .

Then   he was informed  that  a similar sign is  on display  in  state schools  in the region  which , as far as he knows, has not been  reported by the media . To counter   possible  attack by  viruses of any  kind  , he downed a cheeseburger with  chips  and  a  non-alcoholic  vanilla  milkshake . 

While waiting for  a  bus  to the  ferry terminal  at the nearby  sun drenched    Ogden Street  hub , our  reporter  said   there was a  deafening  noise  being made by a   machine close by  which  seemed to be drilling  all  the way to China. A  workman  came  up  and  offered  ear   plugs . A large part of   Flinders Street, near where  Dimmy's store used to be ,  seemed  in   the process of being turned into  a  quarantine station , barricades   going   up . What gives ? Could be a story here .  


In a spooky , secret location resembling Jurassic Park , a  colony of flying  dragons has  been  found .  The  creatures   travel almost at the speed of sound which explains why  they  are  slightly blurred  in this  exclusive series of  photographs. They   were caught rocketing   around a  tree  in North Queensland , in  an odd  location  which  looks  like part  of  the  set  for  a  zombie movie

Dive bombing a  Curlew
Unfortunately the wondrous  dragons do not emit flames like the Welsh ones .They are  in a variety of sizes and would   become  Australia's biggest   tourist  attraction , more so than pissy  Koalas. However, the Queensland Government , at  the  urging of  worried   zoologists , will keep them under wraps  because  they  look like  crocodiles .
Once it got out that there are  flying crocodiles  in North Queensland  the publicity mad  cat in a Marlboro Man  hat, Bob Katter  senior , would sure as hell  demand they be   instantly  culled .  He would paint a grim picture of  women hanging out the washing being devoured by low flying dragons  ; Kindergarten  children being eaten as they romp about  in sandpits ; postmen scared to deliver the  mail  after several  are  torn  to  shreds  .
 In another stunt , trigger-happy Katter , wearing mobs of Thin Lizzy on his kisser ,  accidently shot  his  hat .

Tuesday, February 18, 2020


Vengeful American Eagle over Julian  Assange's boyhood island home.

Vallis series .

Monday, February 17, 2020


By  plein  air  artist  Vallis .

Sunday, February 16, 2020


Katter suffering rope burn 
Top End crocodiles are  outraged over the latest media stunt of  political crock  Bob  Katter.

It  involved  him  ziplining  across  the top of an obese crocodile  in  the   Cairns casino wildlife dome .

Respected leading Darwin crocodiles agree  their Cairns  cousin   should have reared up and  grabbed caterwauling  Katter  by  the vitals as he passed over  him in  his Marlboro Man  hat .

"Katter  regularly calls for  crocodiles to be shot in North  Queensland , " said the Darwin Crocodile  Farm's  best known     saurian, Harry Messel  lll."Katter even claims  crocodiles devour one of his  constituents  every three months, which is a downright lie , as the ABC FactCheck  proves . " 

Gnashing his large teeth , Messel   said  the casino croc, a tubby bloke called Goliath , missed a golden  opportunity to get rid of  arch enemy Katter who regularly poses by the seaside calling  for the slaughter of  God's own creatures .

In Darwin, he continued,   many crocodiles  were used   to  leap  up  and grab  a suspended  chook,  a  hunk of meat  or a photo to scientifically predict the outcome of a pending  footy match  or  a Territory or  federal election . If  a  goose  ziplined  across  any of  these  athletic  crocs  it would be instantly chomped. It  has  been suggested that  Goliath , more than  four metres long ,  let  down  the  Australian  crocodile community because he is overweight  and  on  a  Jenny Craig  diet . 
Katter is  seen here, his ass in a sling, an attractive  American expression,  before he  ziplined  across   disgraced  Goliath .In another media  stunt  Katter recently chained himself to a shovel .


CANBERRA: Rampaging , recalcitrant members of the Nationals have threatened to bring  down the  ScoMo  shambles  if  the  punk  rock   band  they   have  formed  is  not appointed Australia's official  entrant at  the  forthcoming  EuroVision contest.
Rocking the  boat leader of  the raucous punks  has access  to  many baby safety pins  to  stick in his  ears and  nostril .

This  group  of bellicose   Nats    holding the rusty  blunderbuss to the head of the shambolic government  is  comprised  of  longtime   Sid Vicious imitators  who all  claim  they  can  make  themselves heard above the common  herd of pollhorn pollies .
A regular drum-beating Nat  is   Senator Matt  Canavan , who scoffed at schookids marching because of their  concern  about the planet  and is up to his jug-ears in coal .  Recently he  was heard   acting and  shouting like  an organ grinder berating  a  chimp  in  an  Italian penny opera .  During the  Barnaby Joyce challenge to the Wagga Wagga Wrong Font , the Rocky pollie declared   there was need  for the party to shout louder , that  Barnaby was the  man to  lead  because he  regularly  roared   like  a  bull   having   its  testicles  cut  off .

A  little  known  member of   the band told the media it was essential  to  give  Deputy Prime Minister Michael  McCormack   some  bovver , put some  spine back  into  the  jelly  of  the  month  club  Nationals .

Backed by The Goons , Barnaby  can be  heard on a cracked  45 record  yodelling that the Nationals  should be singing in  their own  discordant voice to an invisible audience which, somehow, you would think has no chance of  winning  at  the EuroVision  contest nor  helping them  retain their  seats at  the next  election.

Meanwhile , a ragged  mob of  power mad  minstrels  , the Murdoch Mutilators , has  backed  a move to replace  deep fried  McCormack  with the Federal Water Minister  David  Littleproud's soggy  effigy (above)  which  angry farmers  at Tocumwal ,NSW, threw into the Murray River in September , furious over the  Murray-Darling Basin Plan  which had created  a  dust  bowl in the foodbowl   and  killed  vast  numbers  of   fish . 


Dehydrated cloud  over dry Mitchell Street  looking for  monsoons .
By watching  television  weather reports  at  night  it is easy to get the impression that the Northern Territory capital , Darwin ,  is  receiving  regular  wet  season  rain . The reality , however, is  that  really heavy monsoonal rain has not  been experienced . Short, sharp storms , the rain seemingly  evaporating almost as it  hits the ground , adding  to  the feeling of Mango Madness . Last year was  a poor  wet  . 

Saturday, February 15, 2020


It has often been said that if you build a better mouse trap, the world  will beat a path to your door  wanting  to invest in the product.  What  is  the situation if  you unexpectedly  develop  an  environmentally  friendly  rat trap ?

An inventive , mathematically minded  man  we know in North Queensland   recently spotted a  bush rat, possibly  forced in by the weather,running about his house . Out  came  an  ordinary rat  trap , cheese applied, thoroughly  lashed  on  with cotton .

Next morning ...cheese  gone , no rat caught . Man outsmarted  yet  again by a rodent . That  night , he  adjusted   the  trap  so  delicately  he was lucky  not  lose a  digit or  three  in  the process of    putting it  in  position

Watching  television   with  his wife, he happened to  catch a  glimpse of the  rat   running in the direction of  the  trap .  Getting up to investigate , there was a sudden commotion,screeching heard.What in God's name had happened ?

From behind  the deep freeze  in  a side room, a large python had slithered out  and grabbed the rat !!! It had looped itself   about the rat, which  was protesting  loudly . The snake , about  a metre and half  long , then proceeded to adjourn  to  the  back of  the  freezer  to  enjoy supper . A check of the trap showed that it had not gone off and the cheese was missing .It seems the  smart  rat  was  grabbed  while  digesting the  cheese. 

Discretion  the better part of valour , the householder decided to leave the snake where it was  until the morning  . His  wife,  not    happy  about sharing the  evening with a  python , made  sure the  bedroom was secured  like Fort Knox   before   hitting  the sack .

In the morning , the snake, a bit lumpish ,  was  still  in  situ behind the  freezer .  A snake man was  called from  nearby  and  kindly offered  to return the  serpent   if  another  rat  turned  up  on  the  premises . The lady of the house , from Tasmania which ,  like Ireland  and  New Zealand , is supposed not to have any  snakes,  firmly  said   no   thanks .