Say what?

(C) PJ Croft 1992, 2020

Time for a language blast. I’ve just seen a Facebook comment:
“Nine did not he working there either” Huh? (Referring to Channel 9.)

It’s not some foreigner’s comment, it’s a local name. It was in reply to someone saying so-and-so was trained at Channel 9 once. People seem to write on Facebook without looking at what they write and certainly not re-reading so as to correct their errors. It’s complete carelessness. If they care so little about what they write, why should I care about what they’ve written either?

It’s also time to raise the use of “so” to start sentences again. It’s become chronic. Even people in high scientific and managerial positions seem unable to speak without prefacing their sentences with “So…” It’s not just in this country, it’s in interviews I hear from the BBC and other UK stations too.

Speaking of chronic, I renew my offer of $10 to any journalist who can show me an article he or she has written in the past five years that does not include the word iconic. You must be able to prove it was written before this prize offer, of course.

Iconic has become the worst cliche word in the history of the English language, I say, and if you can’t write without using it, maybe you should consider another occupation.


I picked up a nice lens off Facebook Marketplace on Thursday. I’ve had a Pentax K-5 for ten years now, with a Sigma 10-20mm, a Pentax 18-45mm, a Pentax 55-200mm and a Sigma 120-400mm to go with it. Not a bad lineup, eh?

But they are quite large lenses, not ideal for just carrying one lens and when I saw a Sigma 18-125mm for $100, I liked it.

That’s 27-190mm in full frame terms, a good walking-around and travel lens, so I bought it. I really shouldn’t invest any more in this Pentax system as I rarely use it, but it produces very nice pictures and the price was OK, so I took it.

The seller turned out to be an Indonesian guy named Herry from Jakarta, so we had a good chat. He works at Perth Modern School which is where I met him. I have an invitation to visit him as he is going back to Jakarta to live soon. That would be nice. If I ever get there. Unfortunately, this Covid-19 virus puts me off going anywhere at the moment. My friend Yudi in Sanur is making terrific offers to stay in his hotel, which he has really turned into a lovely place, but I can’t risk going there. One day when this is all over.

I read yesterday that the only place in Indonesia that they can even test for the virus is in Jakarta, so if you noticed symptoms in Bali, you would be on your own. I wouldn’t even risk going to a hospital in Bali for fear of catching either Covid-19 or any of the other infectious disease while your immune system was down.


I drove the MX-6 into the city and home again on Thursday, and it solidified my thoughts that maybe I won’t keep it. The main reason is that I find it so hard to get in and out. Getting in’s not too bad as I can just slide in down the seat, but getting out I have to rest my right arm on the top of the seat back, grab the window with my left hand, swing my right leg out and haul myself out, leaning hard on the door pillar while I do. I can do it but it’s not easy. Being a 2-door coupe, the door is wide and you need to have room, or be careful about hitting the car alongside.

The ride is also quite hard and bumpy (fair enough, it is a sports car) and the brakes need a hard push, so hard sometimes I think they won’t stop me in time. The steering is the best bit, sharp and responsive, and so is the engine. It feels quick, even within the speed limits.

The lack of a rear wiper, the lack of a left foot rest, lack of any kind of electronic fuel computer… you have to notice it’s a 25 year old car. I don’t think I’ll lose any money on it and it has rego until September. It’s a great buy for someone young and fit.


When I bought the replacement tablet (replacement for the one that’s lost somewhere, still not found), I bought a 4G phone model, and a Telstra data plan to go with it. It’s great that it’s always on-line, ready, not needing wi-fi passwords to use.

But the data plan was $25 per month for 10GB. I thought at the time that it was a bit expensive. Well, today I paid the second month’s bill and found that of my 10GB data allowance, I’d only been using about 100MB per month! That’s 1/1000th of my allowance.

Therefore I’ve reduced to a 5GB/month $15 plan. That’s the minimum. Obviously even that’s more than I need. I might have to shop around in a month or two.