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ARTS AND CULTURE

Col Booth’s mark of 2 out of 50 for music has brought a response from Pat Dwyer. “During 1957, I shared a haus kunai with Trevor McMinn, a pre ASOPA CEO in charge of Mandi T School. He failed music because he refused to play a recorder. The DEO arranged for Trevor to be retested by his wife, an ex music teacher. Trevor again refused to play the recorder so his wife sang Three Blind Mice and waved her arms while Trevor drummed with a piece of firewood on the kitchen table. He passed. The last I heard of Masta Mikmik he was Dr McMinn at NSW education head office.

Jeff Chapman enters our Recorder Reminiscence - recollecting that one Moose Davis had problems with the instrument. “Though I’m not sure how he knew he had problems,” says Jeff unkindly, “as he never played one.” Noel Cislowski tested Bob at the end of 2nd year for the music exam, and Bob fessed up he couldn't play. “Noel told Bob to hold the recorder with his fingers covering the holes, lift one finger and blow gently. He explained this was the note G and asked Bob to play G, which he did. The resultant mark of 8 out of 15 was sufficient for a pass”.

The phone rings and down the phone line Bill Bergen croons a version of the title tune from The Natives Are Restless. After a six-month search for the melody from the ASOPA revue of 1963, we found it in Bill’s head. Despite the telephone static, it’s clear Bill’s an accomplished vocalist.

Marie Burns recalls my famous dissertation on Sex. “I searched in vain through my PNG archives for clues,” she says. “Lots of cheering and clapping as you strode to the lectern dressed very formally. You opened an impressive looking folder, looked about the room and said with great authority: ‘Ladies and gentlemen … (long pause) … It gives me great pleasure’. Stunned silence, then we all fell about the floor laughing.” Marie’s recall is pretty good after all these years. It was the revue – and here’s the script of that vignette.....

Bob Davis has nominated Dave Argent as his partner for the 500 tourney. “Well, I don’t know about that,” says an eloquent Kurt, quoting the well known Latin proverb “Saepe intereunt aliis meditantes necem”. A loose translation of which is, as Bob would know, ‘Those who plot others’ destruction often destroy themselves’. Now is that a poke in the eye or what?

Dave Argent, attempting to raise the tone of Vintage last issue, cited a Latin proverb. I now have it on good authority (one Hen Bodman) that this quote may have been used by none other than Harry Flashman, the bully of Tom Brown’s School Days who went on to become a soldier. sleeping with all manner of beautiful women while desperately seeking to avoid physical conflict. Kurt’s literary pursuits know no bounds.

Peter Salmon, an old kiap mate of mine from Chimbu, mentions a ditty I used to sing back in ’65 to the tune of Sur La Pont D’Avignon: “Kiaps here, kiaps there, bloody kiaps every-where; PO’s 1, PO’s 2, CPO's can POQ”. By the way, Peter has the perfect antidote if you’ve been suffering withdrawal effects from lack of contact with kiaps and wonder what they’re up to 40 years on. He runs a fine website http://exkiap.net.

Some years ago Marie Burns read a chapter by a Molly Kreidl in a book, Dazzling Prospects, but never made the connection until now. “Molly despaired at the possibility of ever making it to inspector level because of the impracticality of women being posted to small schools around the State – and this the only way up the ladder in Queensland. Go Girl!”

Dave Argent provides me with a timely reminder, “Don’t forget to bring your tutu to Port, I remember it well”. Many more would recall my ‘fairy’ act at the revue if John ‘Jack’ Waters had got his way and had me follow up the punch-line “Whoops I’m a fairy” by ‘flying’ offstage on a wire. I pouted at him, folded my gossamer wings petulantly and refused.

By the way, those lines penned by John Waters were: “I don’t go out with the girls any more / I don’t go out with Mary / I don’t go out with the boys any more / Whoops, I’m a fairy”.

‘Moose’ Davis sends me a neatly-wrapped audio-tape of PNG sounds. Counting in Motu, a Southern Highlands field clearing song and a story on why the flying fox hangs upside down in the daytime. There is some hot boogie jews harp, too.