Guest Post: A Bunyip Epistle

This wonderful piece was sent to me earlier this evening and I, unfortunately, being out, missed it until now. Although it may be too late to beat that pot this evening, please give it a good going over tomorrow at 9pm, and then on until the lockdowns finish.

Professor Bunyip writes:

Bunyips as a broad rule are quite content with our own company. This is as much a matter of inevitability as preference since wives and sweethearts, present and ex, find so many deficiencies of character in need of comment that solitude becomes the balm of a hectored brain. When a cork being popped booms in the silence like Tchaikovsky’s cannon, life is generally as good as it is ever likely to get (allowing, of course, that one has not fallen in love with a lusty deaf mute).

There are, however, exceptions which every weary Victorian will immediately recognise while Lockdown 6.0 inflicts its further ravages on the pitiful tatters of the state’s economy. To the north of Trashcanistan on the Yarra, Sydneysiders kvetch about their first prolonged taste of the madness that has sealed them in their homes. Just wait, Harbourians, until your kids have missed almost two years of schooling, every third shop is shuttered or for lease, and the police have been given their head to stop, quiz, rebuke, rough up and charge those guilty of offences deemed heinous by our elected betters and their chief medical officers.

You know, things like sitting in a sunny park or ignoring the order that children must not, under any circumstances, play on swings and slides lest Mister COVID leap like a tumescent molester from the sandbox. Having pledged herself to the Dan Andrews model, there is no longer any choice but that Old Mother Gladys continues following her nose, as you might say, along the same downhill road.

The time will come though, as it has at the Billabong, when mandated solitude is several weeks of isolation too many. Strange thoughts and bizarre urges arise, even to the point of collecting the empty bottles from beneath the sofa, regarding the cat as a gifted interlocutor or dismantling the upstairs lavatory’s cistern because the constant drip of water leaking into the bowl becomes suddenly and infuriatingly too much to bear. Three weeks ago – blessed be Dan – Victorians were allowed to drive considerable distances to visit friends. Now – Dan be damned – we must remain indoors from 9pm until 5am, and woebetide all who fail to count their remaining cigarettes as darkness falls.

Tonight, come 9pm and every night thereafter, the Billabong will resound to a big metal spoon being banged on a bigger metal pot. It’s a one-Bunyip protest against insanity — and VicPol-proof to boot since there will be no stepping beyond the property line. As an exercise it might just draw off a little of the fury at being ordered about by a corrupt, jug-eared grub of Premier and his simpering sidekick CMO. It might even bleed of disgust with The Grub’s chief enabler, the Prime Minister who reaches immediately for the taxpayers’ chequebook to underwrite each and every of the premiers’ authoritarian frolics. If South Australia’s CMO were to announce an expert initiative aimed at ridding pizza boxes and footballs of viral peril, can anyone doubt Morrison would fund that too? Should Queensland’s CMO yearn for a return to the norm as one of the witches from the Scottish Play’s open scenes, the spineless net zero would rent her a theatre.

So tonight, if any of Dover Beach’s neoCats care to join the racket at 9pm, feel free to bang away. It would restore much faith that the idealised Australian of yore yet draws breath – disrespectful of authority, not open to bullying, imbued with rough-hewn common sense.

Don’t fancy that? Well you can always call one of the dobber lines and inform on noisy, neighbouring Australians. You know, the ones who fall short of the Good German standard.