Goon! But not forgotten, Jim. Not forgotten Jiiii-iiim!


The good ol’ days of 2″ videotape. Those are my hands. © PJ Croft 2014

I can hardly believe it. This morning’s Goon Show was the last to be aired on the ABC! “Contractual reasons” was the reason given.

The Goons have been running weekly, continuously, for more than 30 years, the last regular broadcasts in the world. I’ve been listening regularly for about 15 years, since I retired. I used to wake at 5.30am for the Goon Show every Friday (and that made waking at that time a daily habit), and for the past year or so I’ve been pretty regularly listening at 5.00am on Mondays after they shifted it. It seems now as if that shift might have been to shake as many of us addicts off as they could before axing it.

I’ve got more than 100 episodes recorded on Mini-Discs and on the computer, and I’ve usually heard the episode before, but this morning’s was one I hadn’t heard before! (The Thing on the Mountain). Even now, the episodes are fresh. I don’t care how many times they are repeated, it’s like listening to classical music, you always hear something new in the performance.

Bloody BBC – I bet they are behind this. “Contractual reasons”. A euphemism for, We can make more money out of this than the ABC is willing to pay. So much for the Mother Country and the Empire.

I must admit I don’t listen apart from in bed because they need concentration. You can’t listen and be reading or doing something else at the same time. I guess I’ll have to find the episode titles I don’t have and buy the CDs.

This is a tragedy. Not only are the Goons gone, there used to be radio comedy every morning at 5.30am – all BBC of course, but I was a regular listener.  My Music, My Word, Round the Horn … I must admit those got a bit repetitive, but they’re all gone. Tragic.

All I can say is that RN is a rich source of programs at that time of the morning so I’ll continue listening.


To Liberal voters, what does it take to open your eyes and minds? How many lies and broken commitments will it take to make you realise that Barnett will break any promise, say anything, go back on any agreement at any time he feels like it?

His latest is to say that all the 2013 election statements that his promises are “Fully costed, fully funded” were printed by the party organisation and not endorsed by him, therefore he doesn’t have to stand by them. What crap! Why didn’t he say so last year?

The hypocrisy of the government is also on display again with the last parliamentary pay increases. Yes, it’s an independent committee that sets politicians’ salaries, but he could have made a stronger effort to ensure the CPI rise increase was adhered to. As far as I’m concerned, the unions should now push as hard as they can for whatever pay increases that police, nurses, teachers and others deserve. Any cooperation in keeping wages down is forfeited.

Worse, much worse, is the Queensland Liberal National government led by that hard man Campbell Newman. When Tony Fitzgerald QC is moved to speak out about the dangerous attacks on democracy in Queensland, and the Law Society is moved to call for the blocking of the appointment of a Supreme Court judge because he is “too close” and “influenced” by Newman and the LNP party, something is seriously wrong.

The Liberal National Party Queensland government is unmistakeably taking Queensland back to the days of Joh and all the corruption and bribery of those times.

This is on top of the harsh treatment of nurses and other essential workers in Queensland last year. Newman dished out massive job losses in government departments, regardless of their effects on these dedicated workers. This was harsh, cruel treatment.

This is the Liberal Party way. Harsh, cruel government, voted for by the type of people who think all unions are bad and “Laws are for other people. Get out of my way, allow me to make myself rich and some of it might rub off on you”. The old saying that the rich are getting richer is definitely true, but it’s at the expense of the poor, even in this country.

If you voted for it, good for you, but I didn’t. I’m affected – I’ll be losing my Seniors concessions. While Liberal parliamentarians will be smoking their cigars and counting their pay rises and investment bankers will continue to get away with insider trading and fraud.

Also coming from the federal Liberal government is a repeal of the law that financial advisors must work “in the interests of their clients”. In other words, for a Liberal government, advisors do not by law have to have the interests of their clients uppermost. How can any of us now have confidence in any financial advice? The way is open for kickbacks, frauds and secret commissions, as happened at the Commonwealth Bank.

I spit.


Feeling a bit better today, and I know why. I’m almost pain free for the first time in over two weeks.  My left ankle and foot have been very painful, enough that I’m having to use my stick just to get from the bed to the bathroom. I was hobbling all the time and getting shooting pain and constant aches. Strong painkillers were not having much effect. I think it was caused by a pinched nerve up in my left hip area and by shifting my position and repadding my chair, I seem to have made some progress in fixing it.

Chronic pain. It’s insidious. It has a greater effect than just the pain itself, it also affects my mood, badly.

I wasn’t aware until recently that paracetemol doesn’t work for everyone. So that’s why my Panadol Osteo never seemed to have any effect! I asked the chemist the other day and she confirmed it – she said Panadol definitely doesn’t work for her either.

I’ll be danged. All these years when I thought it might be working, it was probably just placebo. Grrr. The problem is, I can’t use ibuprofen or aspirin either due to the other meds I take, so that doesn’t leave much at all. She said codeine is addictive, and I find Tramadol has little effect either.  I’ll have to ask the doc. Medical marijuana is the answer, I reckon. Not that I’d know.


I’m in a quandary. I’m compiling an electronic version of our school magazine for our 50th anniversary reunion in October. I’m on a small committee (6 of us) and we discuss how things should be, and because I’m pretty computer “literate”, I’ve got the job. I’ve been calling for contributions for the past four or five months (tell us what you’ve been doing in your life for the past 50 years) but out of 150 emails sent out, I’ve only had 16 responses, and none from the committee members.

I would have thought people would have a fair bit to write about to cover 50 years, but all the responses have been no more than one A4 page and one photo, usually less and no photo.

Except mine, as you may gather. I’ve written 40 pages with about 30 photos. How can I write less? I remember it all and I have hundreds of photos, hundreds. It’s mostly about my life at Channel 7 of course, but the last 15 years since Channel 7 have been interesting too. I’ve been back over it to see if I want to drop anything out, but no.

As well, I’ve written another 20 pages about what life was like at the Boys’ Hostel in Northam, with several photos. Twenty pages! I could have written more, and I’ll probably add some. I’ve also included scans of my old school reports, certificates, references (from school times) and a 1966 letter home. I also have plans for at least another 20 pages of other material, and I’ll be going up to Northam soon to get present day photos.

But I feel as if I’m in a foot race and I’m sprinting away, then realising there’s no-one beside me. I’m looking back and there’s no-one coming up behind me either, they’re all just standing at the start line. I’m saying, “Come on, where are you?” I’ve suggested things for people to write about and put the magazine in 100 page prototype form up for them to look at, but I get no response at all, no comments.

It’s a bit disheartening. I’ve said I don’t want it just to be Pete’s magazine, but I get no response. Too bad, it’ll be my magazine, then.


Due to the consecutive failure of two cheap coffee makers bought from Woolies, I’ve been without one for a while, but I missed it. I weakened and bought another $49 one from Coles the other day. (I got a full refund from Woolies.)

You can’t tell anything about it from the pictures on the box, but I’ve found that (a) the capsules it uses are unique – you can’t use any except its specific brand; (b) it has a small water container that holds no more than two cups worth, so I’m constantly refilling it; (c) it only makes demi-tasse espresso sized cups, not the full cups we’re used to; (d) they’re not very hot out of the machine; and (e) it’s s-l-o-w. You have to wait.

However, the coffee is quite nice, so I’ll stick with it. I often leave some cold coffee in the cup anyway. For $49, lump it mate.


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