December 7, 2008

“Are they mice or men? Can’t you hear their hearts squeek? Eek, eek.”

The British opposition leader acted up a storm in order to ridicule the governments’ meek handling of the Layla Parkin stunt. The country had become dangerously disorganized since yesterday’s Melbourne broadcast. People were staying home from work and bumping into lampposts in order to keep an eye on the “breaking news!” banners.

“Requested the Australian government to look into it… kind sir… kind sir… if you don’t mind sir… if you don’t mind sir.”

He mocked about a bit more before thrusting a report into the air. Unlike this sorry shambles of a government, he’d got off his behind and done something. Produced by a team of eminent scholars from Cambridge, the report demonstrated exactly how Layla Parkin and the WCA elitists had fooled the world.

It was all a sham and the government had failed its people by its inaction. He, along with much of the population, wished it were not so. He wished that there really was some angel sent down to solve the world’s problems in a stroke. It would be so much easier than having to debate and negotiate, wouldn’t it?

Oh, let us forgive the girl though. Let her come out of hiding now and let us send her off to Bondi with a pat on the bum. This was simply yet more colonial blowback to stoically suffer through… Neighbours, Shaddap You Face, Dame Edna… and I regret to inform the Prime Minister that Skippy… didn’t really make those clicking noises.

Prime Minister… a word in your shell-like… if and when a Messiah does appear, I suggest there would be little reason for him to drop anchor in Australia and no reason at all to bob up in Melbourne. Like little children, the antipodeans may wish to turn the world upside-down but we adults… it’s our thankless task to constrain them and set them straight.

It was a job well done; he had injected some much needed light relief to dissipate the worry in the British population. It bolstered his popularity at home and brought him to the attention of a huge foreign audience as the parliamentary sketch was liberally aired on the world’s news channels.

This is one instance but, as you can imagine, there was quite a reaction to Layla’s declaration and performance… from all corners. Generally, hand thing cool, baby thing horrific… what about the babies… won’t someone do something.

The British polly was wrong about Layla being in hiding. Unless simply living in Australia qualifies. No, she stayed at Sholeh’s Thursday night and went down to the Lexus Centre on Friday morning to give the Collingwood lads a gee-up. On Saturday she attended the Grand Final at the MCG with Sholeh and a hundred thousand others.

But it wasn’t business as normal with her massive Melbourne fan base. People were wary of her. The motivational speech at the Lexus Centre; the train trip to Jolimont on the big day; the walk to the stadium; the spectacle of the final… all had an eerie, muffled feel.

She sensed suspicion, disappointment and fear. Some angry individuals yelled abuse from a distance. Very few autograph hunters; they didn’t want to confront her. People preferred to snatch a peek from under a blanket. When one young lad rushed up to her with a pen and paper she was cognizant of the terror of the parents who had retreated a step after their failed grasping and then stuck motionless like sweating statues.

It was uncomfortable for her. Sensitive to this change in attitude, she waded on through the day as if it was shallow water… slowed down… but only to tactfully avoid unnecessary splashing. She gripped Sholeh’s hand supportively on occasion.

Despite being unbackable favourites and having Layla’s divine blessing, Collingwood managed to squander a thirty point half-time lead to be handily beaten by a resurgent Carlton squad. What a relief… the world hadn’t changed so much after all. All the barrackers, Collingwood, Carlton and non-affiliated were in much better form on the return trip to the city. Layla was wrong… and far more huggable for it. She was happy to take any sniping good-naturedly.

A period went by and the situation became clearer. Pregnancy, it just wasn’t happening… despite concerted efforts. Five months after his lambasting speech and with the baby embargo holding, the British opposition leader was forced to resign. No loss. How dare he slur Skippy!


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