Natalie Solent

Politics, news, libertarianism, Science Fiction, religion, sewing. You got a problem, bud? I like sewing.

E-mail: nataliesolent-at-aol-dot-com (I assume it's OK to quote senders by name.)

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Sunday, April 24, 2005
 
"However entrancing it is to wander through a garden of bright images," as Wimsey said to Harriet Vane in Holloway Gaol as she stood trial for her life, "are we not enticing your mind from another subject of almost equal importance?"

Angie Schulz of Machinery of Night writes regarding this post:

You pointed to the .net guy's list of questions
supposedly asked of an Australian tourist bureau. As you probably guessed, this list was a joke/hoax. It sprang up during the time of the Sydney Olympics (I was living in Sydney at the time). I seem to remember that the Sydney Morning Herald had something to do with it (which comes as no surprise), but I was unable to google up a cite.

(In the course of my googling I learned that there was an HMS Rattlesnake which explored Australia and surrounds in the mid-19th c, the voyage of which was chronicled by T.H. Huxley. So the time spent searching was not a loss.)

I believe the responses were meant to be the SMH's, but I can't swear to it. I remember that it circulated around my workplace, and I was annoyed to find it was a hoax because I devoted a little thought to why people should ask such stupid questions. Perhaps, in Germany, milk *wasn't* available all year 'round; wasn't it provincial of the Australians not to think of that?
Someone swore blind to me that in Germany, if you want to sell your house, the law demands that you paint all the walls white even if your purchaser adores your wallpaper. - NS
Perhaps rattlesnake venom is used to treat some disorder, and the person wants to ensure that he has access to a supply?

And as for the hippo racing...well, hell, there is (or was) an annual camel race at the Randwick racetrack (the Sheikh Zayed Cup), and if you can believe camel racing in Sydney, is hippo racing all that far fetched? Well, maybe.

(It looks as if the Sheikh Zayed Cup no longer exists, because the most recent cites seem to date from 2000.)

If Angie can be sporting enough to admit when she was taken in, so can I. When I saw this passage about the Iraqi election -
It's easy to hail the courage of the purple-fingered sheep who sashayed to the voting centers under the protection of armed U.S. soldiers
- quoted on some blog I went haring over to the site in a fury ready to make the author taste the Wrath of Natalie.

Going back a few years, when first some few words from the sublime Kai Lung entranced my eyes (albeit in the ignoble guise of discourse between imaginary persons in the tales of Wimsey, a barbarian lordling), untrammelled was my rejoicing to discover this evidence (as I thought it) that the elevated sense of humour of those of the Middle Kingdom maintained such a harmonious parallelity to that of the unworthy one before you.