If you’ve survived more then a few weeks on this Earth, I’m sure you would have, at some point, consumed some food. Along with oxygen, water, love, and a comfortable pair of shoes, food is critical for our survival.

Presumably if you, like me, are relatively well off (I mean in the grand scheme of things – you have the internet after all), then food may not seem as important for survival as other things. When you sit down to lunch, you don’t say: “Gad, I must eat this, lest I perish”, you’re far more likely to just eat up, and then maybe say “I wonder if I should have had the chicken instead…”

Food is a social cornerstone of our society. Unlike other bodily functions which must be executed in privacy, eating food is almost always a public affair. Whenever possible we dine with company, only alone when we need to.

Where is my point leading?

Nowhere in particular, but I will leave you with this recipe for a delicious and novel snack which is cheap, healthy and fun to make.

Two Minute Noodle Omelet


1 packet of two minute noodles (You can get 99% Fat free varieties)

1 or 2 eggs

1.5 dashes of milk or cream (if you like)

Herbs, spices, other things you might put in an omelet. (Today I’m going to try sweet chili sauce and fresh chopped coriander.)

What to do…

1. Cook the 2-minute noodles as per instructions. For a bit of texture, cook them a little al dente, a tiny bit underdone.

2. Drain the noodles and add the egg, herbs, spices, etc. Mix well taking care not to break up the noodles too much.

3. Add the omelet mixture to a hot, greased, non-stick pan and cook on either side.

4. Serve

State of Serenity

What a week it’s been! For the last six days I’ve been living it up in Queensland at the 26th World Congress of the International Association of Logopedics and Phoniatrics, and what a congress it was! Rubbing shoulders with the Who’s Who of Speech Pathology (or is that “Who’s whom”?) and enjoying the wonderous Brisbane.

May I say what a beautiful town Brisbane is? It was simply spectacular, if you’ve never been, go! If you have been but not in the last little while, go again! If you’re lucky enough to live there, open your window and shout out something wonderous and subtropical!

Anyhue (preferably indigo), I must end now. The world is an amazing place.

PS As my esteemed friend and house mate Dan pointed out in a recent reply, no body seems to be replying to entries! Does this mean nobody’s reading them? It’s really not that hard, folks! You’ll find comprehensive instruction on the right of screen. Talk to me!!

I’m Tom of SGR, Goodnight.

Ask Dr Aunty Joan

Well, Dr Aunty Joan hasn’t been able to answer any of your enquiries for some time, what with Athens and everything. She’s been training extremely hard, which is why we here at SGR were so proud when she won gold. This makes her the first woman since the Berlin Olympics to even make the finals in the 90kg division weightlifting, and she brought home the gold. Congrats Dr Aunty J.

And there’s no rest for her yet. Here is a letter from one of our fans:

Dear Aunty Joan,
I have this problem you see, I don’t like the thought of sharing footwear with another being. But just today a young girl asked me to lend her my shoes as she had none and i couldn’t bring myself to refuse. Now just looking at these shoes send a shiver down my spine. I feel so violated. How do you suggest I work on getting over my fear of contracting Tinea from my shoes? They are a favourite pair of mine too, and it is not a solution to throw them and get a new pair. Please help me Aunty Joan.
From a young woman in need

Dear Young Woman in need,
First let me start by saying that you are not alone. When it comes to personal items there are two types of people in this world: the sharers and the non-sharers. And I suspect, like me, you are a non-sharer. Don’t be mistaken, I’m not for a moment saying that if a friend needed a pencil, some food or $5, that you wouldn’t be happy to share. But stationery, food and money are one thing; shoes are quite another.
I wouldn’t feel guilty or selfish, you’ve spent possibly years getting those shoes to fit the unique shape of your foot, and now, in a single day, due to the absent mindedness of a friend, you’re back to square one. On the other hand, don’t be too harsh on your friend, she is obviously not a non-sharer and can’t understand what could possibly be wrong with a bit of footwear apportion.
What you need is a tube of Daktarin and a pair of latex socks. Both can be acquired from a good chemist. Next time your friend asks to borrow your shoes, say “Sure, but you might need these” (give her the latex socks and Daktarin). She will probably say something like “Do you have tinea or something?” You should reply, “Well, the Doctors say it’s not exactly tinea, but that I should be careful”. This ought to deter her from taking your shoes.
Don’t throw out your shoes but do give them a good dusting with Daktarin and leave then out in the sun. Then give them a good clean and I’m sure they’ll seem like their old selves.
I hope this helps.
Dr Aunty Joan.

Dr Aunty Joan will be appearing at Westfield Parramatta 12pm this Saturday, apparently K-mart are having a sale.

The Right Hand…

There is something I must say, and I must say it with a heavy heart: it is a dark day for this city, a dark day for our great state and a dark, dark day for this, our glorious country.
In Athens our fine athletes are doing us proud, running, jumping, swimming, riding and throwing things around like I always wished I could. And, as an election looms, our leaders are “on the trail”, doing their utmost to better our nation. Everywhere, men and women who call Australia home are out there working there fingers and noses to a bloody pulp to better our land, and just when it seems things couldn’t go any better for place of green and gold, tragedy strikes.
Tragedy struck, as I’m sure you have now heard, in the form of an advertisement in the Newcastle Herald (14/8/04, pg76). This is what it said:

If you are well presented,
motivated, right handed
and are interested in lear-
ning shoe repairs, key cut-
ting and engraving.,
Please reply to the
Manager, PO Box 486
Mayfield 2304.

I truly could not believe my eyes. And when the situation had fully dawned on me, I could no longer see the ad, because my eyes grown so full of tears.

In this day and age, there are still people out there who think that a person is not truly entitled to his (or her) full rights unless he (or she) is right handed.
Like a disgusting feral rabbit eating away at the carrot of Australian society IS handedness discrimination.
Now me, I’m thick skinned, I can take a bit of a knock, but what about little Left-Handed Johnney who looks up at his mum with big brown eyes and says, “When I grow up, I want to be a HELLBAR OPERATOR”. And his mum has to go down on one knee and look him in the eye and dash his hopes and dreams to the ground because of the bigotry of our society.
It is my hope, that if you are well presented, motivated, right handed, and interested in that position, you would not apply because you would rather scrounge through eel infested desert, and eat scraps, poo and glace cherries before you would work in a place that was handednessist.

And if you did choose to reply to the Manager, I hope that you would do so with your left hand, perhaps as you drove past his shop, and show him that Australia is not the place for such single-minded thinking.

As Abraham Lincoln once said* “He who writes with his left, is left with his rights.”

*While Lincoln MAY have said this at some point, it is vastly more likely that it is a complete lie and he never actually said anything of the sort. You be the judge. I’m Tom of SGR.

Dr Phil’s New Book…

Dr Phil’s new book “How to Not Wear Your Pants” will be released in Australia later this year. Addressing the issues arising from not wearing pants, it contains contributions from the some of the world’s most renown commentators on this topic.
When Dr Phil invited me to write the introductory chapter, I was quite amazed.
“What are you doin’?” He drawled in that quirky dialect of his as spasms of mirth rippled through my elated frame. I gasped through my heaving lungs. I thought I was in real trouble, but Dr P stepped in a gave me a quick slap across the occipital. He’s a real quick thinker.
I didn’t want to let the big fella down so I leapt to my Remmington and began tapping away at the keys. Before long I realised that the ribbon was quite dry and the darn thing hadn’t put a single mark on my piece of paper. Unhinged, but not so unhinged as to give up, I picked up my telephone receiver and dialed my stationer.
“Bill,” I shouted into my phone “Bill, I need a new ribbon for my Remmington Deluxe and hurry!”
Bill informed me that typewriter ribbons are no longer available, and that his name was not Bill, it was Dianne and if I called again he would hang up immediately. Women!
No typewriter and a whole chapter to write!
Fortunately I am quite computer literate, or “Plugged In” as we technically minded people often quip. I sprang to my desk and cast aside a damp towel and my tax papers for the 2000/2001 financial year, to reveal my computer. With a delightful Apple chime, it whirred to life and I was able to finish my chapter without further complication.
I wanted to provide a sample of that work here, but Dr Phil, who can be quite the tyrant, threatened to enslave me and my entire neighbourhood if I did, so it will have to wait for another time. Apologies. “How to Not Wear Your Pants” by Dr Phil comes out in October will be available at all good book stores and selected mediocre ones.



Lamb has to be the most delicious meat there is. No questions, no comments, the judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

Lamb has all the reddy goodness of beef, the tenderness of chicken and the gamey flavour of all those other meats that you wonder if you’re actually supposed be eating.

Lamb is the only meat that is also a term of endearment and it can be halal or kosher.

So put down that chicken drumstick, that pork chop, that soy vege-burger, that roast beef. Send back that slice of an inferior animal! Raise up your voices and shout very loudly: “No ma’am, I want some Lamb.”

Come on Australia, let your mouths to the talking, eat some lamb today.

Here’s a song about that:

It’s cheap!

It’s sheep!

It’s a slam!

Have some lamb!

Anyway, just like a bad pilot heading for a public library, I’m about to hit the books. But before I do, a quick reminder that the SGR Seminar on procrastination has been postponed, apologies for the inconvenience.



Ask Dr Aunty Joan

Here’s a letter we received from one of our readers:

Dear Aunty Joan,

I have been working on a wonderful new skill – propelling myself along the floor on my behind. I have been practising in private and can now get up quite a speed. The problem is, whenever I do this, people laugh at me and tell me to stop. Are they just jealous, or is this some sort of secret sign language?

Puzzled Monty, Strathfield.

Dear Puzzled Monty,

Propelling oneself on oneself’s behind is, I must say, among the more unusual physical pursuits I have come across (and I like AFL). I imagine the sight you sliding across the carpet on your nether regions would raise a smile from onlookers, but don’t let that get you down, it is a very unique and clever skill, and remember, you are probably the best in the world at it.

I believe the Commonwealth Games in 2006 will be held in Melbourne. What better time and place to unveil to the world this amazing activity? If not as an event then maybe as a part of the opening ceremony. (Could Nikki Webster could be taught the skill in time?).

Besides athletics and amusement, could it have physiological applications as an alternative to walking?

Anyway, I believe this is a totally normal activity and it is your friends that have the real problem (alternatively, you could have tapeworm). Good luck with it, I’m sure it will be an Olympic event in no time (albeit an unusual one, but then again, so is butterfly).

Watchout for the floorboards,

Love, Dr Aunty Joan

Dr Aunty Joan has a new book out but it’s not very good, so I wouldn’t bother if I was you.

If you have a question for Dr Aunty Joan, reply and she’ll sort you out Dr-Aunty style.

Happy Holidays Dan…

Well, things are a little blue at SGR this week (no, I’m not referring to Jono’s shower-to-bedroom nudie runs), one of our number has left for Europe. Dan (of who has been with SGR since the beginning (all of two and a half weeks) has left for France for ten weeks (a period we are dubbing ‘the weeks without Weekes’).

We were going to declare ‘the weeks without Weekes’ a study/assignment free period but since this was likely to be the case anyway, we are just eating a lot of french fries, french toast, croissants, and Belgian waffles (with French vanilla ice-cream).

Anyway, Dan, we hope you have a top time, rapportez-nous du fromage,


PS: Jono doesn’t really do nudie runs: that was just a joke.

Watch out for some disturbing teas!

Well I have to say that I’m extremely disappointed in the entire tea industry. After their marvelous attempt at creating a novel range of flavoured teas, they seem to have let their standards slip. At least that is my view of the matter and I’ll tell you why.

Liptons are still number one in my tea books for their innovation and wonderful effort. Until recently, sharing that top shelf on my own little tea podium was Twinings. Now if you want a delicious refreshing strong cuppa, try Twinings Irish Breakfast, very attractive in its Irish emerald green box. Or, if you’re are after something a little more adventurous with a dash of the orient, try Ceylon Broken Orange Pekoe, or the classic Earl Grey? Do not, under any circumstances try Twinings Lapsang Souchong Tea or, I suspect, Lapsang Souchong Tea made by any other brand.

I was standing in the tea aisle of my local Woolies before a bewildering array tea in every style imaginable. Feeling somewhat euphoric after my recent tea success, I was searching out some other little pearl to try on those relaxing evenings in. Well, I spied Twinings Lapsang Souchong in its fine little purple wrapper and I thought to myself, why not? Well, with the benefit of hindsight I can now answer myself and tell myself in great detail “why not”.

Gad zooks, man! The stuff is Putrid! Absolutely vile. My esteemed friend and house-mate Dan spun me a yarn of hiking for days in moist socks and then drying them out over a smoky fire and then squeezing the murky fluid into a pot and heating it up. I suspect that Dan knew somebody who worked for Twinings, it would not surprise me in the least if it was the case that Twinings hired young men and women of the hiking persuasion to tramp about their factory floor in moist socks before they were carted off to the smoker (the socks I mean, not the men and women of a hiking persuasion).

Now, the only thing I know about ‘Enterprise’ is that it’s the best Star Trek series they made. But even a pseudo-trekkie knows that for something to be on the shelves at Woolworths there must be somebody out there willing to part with good money for it.
I’m not calling you weird if you like that liquefied smoky toe-jam, nor do I want to bring the fine name of Twinings into disrepute merely because I prefer my tea to taste like cookies and cream instead of a cross between an ashtray and a worn boot. The only thing I wish to say is that the packet should come with some sort of warning. People who are browsing the shelves for something refreshing to have with their lamington after a hard day at the office should not be able to put a packet of Lapsang Souchong into their trolley with being completely aware of the consequences of dunking those little babies in hot water.

The packet itself reads: The celebrated black tea with a distinctive smoky flavour from the Fujian province of China. Here are some suggestions I had for the twinings people to add, in the interest of public safety:

– Just the thing for when your smoking unwashed hiking friend: a) is out of town; or b) doesn’t want you to lick his feet.
– Warning: This product is best tasted by people whose senses of smell and taste are severely impaired.
– Not today Sunny-Jim, why don’t you tuck into that Russian Caravan Tea on the next shelf down?
– The original Billy Tea (just like when you accidentally knock the billy over into the fire and then manage to scoop everything back in with a bit of ash too).

Apologies for my cynicism


Ask Dr Aunty Joan…

Well, we’ve had a massive bundle of mail this week, generally positive response to the opening of SGR, mostly saying how much better we are then other sites such as Google or Ebay or NSW Health. Between comments of your experiences with Lipton’s new teas (no word from Lipton as of yet), and requests for future posts, a few of you asked our advice on some of life’s little troubles. Wise though we pretend to be, I felt as if we needed some outside help so I gave my Dr Aunty Joan a call and she was more than happy to put down her crossword and delicious cup of Lipton’s Cherry-Cola Tea to come and offer her years of experience as a doctor and an aunty to you.

Here’s our first letter:

Dear SGR guys,
My name is Timmy and I’m four and three quarters. I read your stories and liked them. Mummy says I can’t make myself a cup of tea because I’m too little but Mummy and Daddy tried a packet of Thai Green Curry Tea and thought it was yummy.

You all seem very smart, can I ask you a question? [ED – YES, CERTAINLY] Thankyou [ED – YOU’RE WELCOME] my friend Sue said that if you watch too much TV you will get square eyes, I don’t watch very much TV (only Playschool, Spot, and Question Time in the House of Representatives) but I do like to watch all the clothes in the washing machine. Do you think I might get big round eyes?

I love you,

Little Timmy.

And Dr Aunty Joan writes…

Hello Little Timmy,

Wow! What an exciting question! Firstly, your friend Sue is quite right. If you watch too much TV, is has been shown to give you square eyes, or ‘ocular cubosis’ as we Aunty Doctors call it. As for watching all the clothes in the washing machine (which is great fun), there hasn’t been as much research in this area. A few studies have shown that kiddies who like to read get huge ugly goopey eyes and don’t make many friends, so don’t try this.
What I suggest is that you try to balance out you TV watching with your Washing Machine watching. If your mummy is a bit worried, maybe she could get a top-loader, or even a twin-tub. The boys here at SGR have a twin-tub and they call it all sorts of nasty names, maybe she could have that one.
Anyway I hope this helps,
Stay away from the naughty boys,

Love, Dr Aunty Joan.

Dr Aunty Joan will be in once a week to answer any questions you always wanted to ask a doctor or an Aunty, but never did. If you have a question for her, reply to this message and we’ll get back to you.

Tom and Dr Aunty Joan.