Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Hook Turn State

THIS business of finding Victoria a new slogan, well what about The Hook Turn State? You turn right from the left lane down there? Well, yes, we do, matter of fact, and if you don’t quite get it, especially the bit about trams, well that’s too bad.  Make a goose of yourself at Collins and Elizabeth and then go home.

The way we do things here, it suits us, like the footy, which we invented, played and followed with absolute conviction as the rest of humanity embraced the shame of soccer. We didn’t care in that pre-Demetriou age if the world got our game or not, nor do we now as the AFL’s Napoleon weaves his schemes of global domination. GWS will fly or fail,  bleeding the League  of money and talent in the process, but either way it will not matter in the sport’s home town. If footy were to regress to suburb vs. suburb, ruckmen whose real careers were butcher or barrister, and rugby banished to beyond the Murray, well quite a few of us would think that an improvement.

If none of the above makes too much sense, stiff. You don’t come from Melbourne, so it doesn’t really matter. In this little corner, very nearly the last stop before Antarctica, we have our little ways.

UPDATE: Come to think of it, installing a hook turn sign in Premier Baillieu's office would not be a bad idea. It might remind him why Victoria installed a Liberal government and why he really needs to put the wheel hard to starboard

UPDATE II: In comments, Deadman suggests also turning back the cricket clock with the re-introduction of the eight-ball over. It would be a splendid reform, but before we get to that,  a gross injustice from half a century ago needs to be admitted and the official record amended, preferably with an apology to the innocent victim, Ian Meckiff. Driven from the game as a chucker, his career was ruined by decisions that had a lot more to do with cricket's politics than the Victorian bowler's unusual action. The video below explains it all. 


  1. "If footy were to regress to suburb vs. suburb, ruckmen whose real careers were butcher or barrister, and rugby banished to beyond the Murray, well quite a few of us would think that an improvement."

    I am in my 20's and I can tell you most aussie blokes my age in Melbourne have variations of the above theme.

  2. PhillipGeorge(c)2011October 19, 2011 at 9:32 AM

    In the new Age of Reason "Diversity and Multiculturalism" are the only topic I know you can have only one opinion about. It's hard to know where the cargo cult that rooted us [deracinated - fancier, by far] actually came from. As a sustained salvo from a 16mm might rearrange the characteristics of some bush pheasant it is hard now to know what original form the place had. The scattered feathers mean it was a bird, but who but the keenest ornithologist would recognize anything else.
    The only other point of reference being: it was alive, so it must have had some history. With that we can touch common ground - for "they" were all crippled. The histories of everywhere have share that commons. Everywhere steeped in blood and afterbirth of its own kind. All pasts lamentable. Every baby shares incontinence, projectile vomit, inexplicable maddening crying, and an inability to walk, let alone fly.

    But nowhere I can think of shares the vomit photos so prolifically as here. Did this baby never smile. Is every snap shot of falls, crying, vomit soiled bibs?

    Thus the number plate:-
    Save Melbourne - shoot an historian today.

    [ah Prof, any excuse, I know! - the steeples of Europe were not about domination, but celebration, light and laughter -
    the living waters of history should be the best wine at your next bar-b-cue, its what a vine does to live, and what rain fall should do for us all; make good wine of it - for whom the authors friend made a famous night of celebrations - but the blink of an eye ago]

    Anonymous - read it twice - if you're still confused we'll do the crayon thing.

  3. In the case of Ted Baillieu it would be "left turn from right"

  4. and we could also restore the eight-ball over for home tests.

  5. "If footy were to regress to suburb vs. suburb, ruckmen whose real careers were butcher or barrister, and rugby banished to beyond the Murray, well quite a few of us would think that an improvement."

    Forcing me out of lurkerdom to shout "Hear, Hear". I am, for the first time in my long footy tragic life, about to give up my membership as I cannot bear the thought of one single dollar of my hard-earned going to pay that Fat-Headed Empire Builder's salary.

  6. Melbourne sounds like a peculiar place.

    I remember arriving there one night a few years back and getting a cab from the airport into the City. There was a talk show on the radio in which the two presenters spent a long time telling their listeners why Melbourne was better than Sydney.

    I would wager a large sum that if you were listenig to Sydney radio at night, the word 'Melbourne' would not be uttered.

  7. Ian Meckiff's grief at the wrongful and abrupt end to his test career can only have been intensified by the way Muralitharan's case was handled.

  8. Did Victorians invent AFL footy? Isn't it a version of Gaelic football which I presume the Irish invented?

  9. Around the time ACDC sang 'Long way to the top' on a truck up the streets of Melbourne, everyone wanted to go there, it was a 'music mecca'. Great memories:

  10. Aussie Rules is not a version of Gaelic football, but rather is a Victorian development of the game that was being played mid C19 in English schools such as Rugby. Maybe, as the rules evolved in the latter half of the 19th century, Irish immigrants who had played Gaelic football had some influence, but there is no credible evidence that this occurred. (Nor did some version of an Aboriginal football game exert any influence.)

    Re Ian Meckiff - I recall that Ian Huntingdon, a Victorian team batsman, in an address to boys at Melbourne High (where he taught) in 1960, opined that Meckiff was a chucker. Make of that what you will. (Also on this occasion, David Parkin was hissed for sychophancy for asking Huntingdon whether he (Huntingdon) might be picked for Australia.)