Posts Tagged ‘art’

Wishing to avoid all internet filters and the attention of international authorities and domestic police services, we here at the Joe Chip Laboratories  make it clear from the start that we are not in any way advocating, suggesting or even disussing the consumption of opium.  In centuries gone by, Professor Chip was a Romantic Poet, and if he could only remember he would tell you what his views were then, but be reassured, like Tony Abbott(1), Joe says No – to everything (not that anyone ever asks).

No, a tall poppy is not opium, and while one of the purposes of this site is to serve as a radical, trendsetting source of  gourmet insights, neither is it something to be eaten.  It is something to be mowed down and placed in a compost pile (2), where it may serve some use at last.

In Australia, we do not have  a thing known as “Tall Poppy Syndrome”.  Or we do, but it is not what we are led to believe it is.  One of the lies we tell ourselves here is that we live in a very egalitarian society, which is supposed to be a good thing.  However, it is seen as having a “dark side”.  The dark side is that we do not like anyone to succeed.  If anyone tries to climb out of the bucket, the other crabs allegedly drag the climbing crab back down.  (There is an assumption that we live in a bucket, and that someone is about to cook us all – James Packer, perhaps, though he has lost a lot of weight lately – I don’t think he’d cook us, but I have no doubt that he would use us a fuel for one of his super yachts.  The smallness of the Australian bucket is why every Australian worth their salt – by their own estimation – had to flee to take up residence in the dankness of England – Clive James, Germaine Greer, Clive James … at least Jeffrey Smart, oh he of blessed brush, had the smarts to take up residence in Rome instead of London.)  Apparently all Australians are poppies (I always knew I was a bit of a dope), but we only like poppies that grow to the same height as the rest of us (see, we’re not racist, we’re heightist, that’s why we pick on Vietnamese immigrants, if only they would grow taller and fit it).  Any time a fatuous celebrity is caught out misbehaving or comes in for a bit of well earned criticism, they play the Tall Poppy Syndrome card, that they are somehow better than the masses and the masses are trying to cut them down to size.

No, its just that in the past, we tended not to give free passes to the famous.  We held them to the same account as we held others.  TPS only existed in the mouths of their publicists.  I see that the latest revised edition of the DSM correctly includes TPS as a delusion of the slightly famed that they are somehow better than other people and must never be criticised, but if they are, the criticism can only reflect a failure of the critic.  The only cure is as indicated above, a good cutting down to size and a period of lying in a pile of rotting vegetation, to restore one to a proper state of mind.

Never eat a Tall Poppy, they taste disgusting and you never know what you might catch.


Happy new year scientists!



(1) Mr Abbott is the leader of the Opposition in the Australian Parliament.  He is commonly referred to as Dr No, because he wears speedos and says no a lot.  If you are of a certain leaning, you are supposed to hate him, as Joe Chip Sr does.  While I dislike many of his positions, I cannot find it in myself to hate him.  I think he is a bit of a lost soul.

(2) described by Joe Chip Sr as “a rat’s smorgasbord”.


Imagine if I could feed the world … with SONG!

That almost is a song.

My voice filling the airways, filling stomachs – when usually, it does the opposite: see

Check out the dying days of the Joe Chip Empire here

Well, there was going to be a blog about what bullets taste like, and it was going to start with a mock complaint:

Thank you fascists, blocking scientific progress yet again

and a rant about how the local authorities had stopped us testing bullets because of so-called safety concerns, and a whinge about the nanny-state, and how regulation forces bullet tasting underground.  Bullets would turn out to be crunchy and bit peppery, because they add spice to life.

My poor attempts at satire are inappropriate, yet again, in wake of another peace-time massacre.  Its not my country, perhaps not my place to say anything, and what do these few words read by even less people mean in the face of so much suffering.

I live in a country that has many failings.  We are a capitalist, mixed economy, which is muddling along, and has weathered the various incarnations of the GFC pretty well.  If an American was to visit, and of course many do, I doubt that they would feel that we were much in danger of being overtaken by either communists or fascists, or that the populace was particularly oppressed.  We have a good standard of living, low inflation, low unemployment, clean-ish air, and a whole lot of things we could do better.  We also have what they would probably call socialized medicine, and strict gun controls.  Those two things make our lives better, not worse, and are not sending us on the way to being North Korea.  I know its not something I can convince anyone of, but if you lived it, you would see that it was true.  The gun fetish in particular can only be described as weird, to outside observers.

Guns don’t kill people.  Mostly, its the bullets.

…the horror…

…the horror…

Reader, I cheat again, but you will see why if you click here

Here at the Joe Chip Laboratories, we try not to eat the living.  or even bits of the living.  And you wonder how the zombie apocalypse is actually going to start – its going to be with guys like these.

“Ma, I don’ feel so well.”

“You look awful – you bin eatin’ anything strange?”

“I didn’t eat it, it were only in my mouth but a moment.”

“Well Bubba stop chewin on me!”

[HP Lovecraft would envy my dialogue.]

Stolen from Mr Battersby.

Hair don’t taste like chicken,

except for chicken hair, which is very rare,

because chickens grow feathers most everywhere.


Useless reptilian descendants,

scratching round, pecking the ground,

you’re just the dinosaur’s genetic burial mound.


Pointless hairless, flightless birds,

can’t feed your children with lactation,

have you absolutely no mammalian aspiration?


Eek eek.


Those of you who have been subscribing to the analytical reports of the Chip Laboratories since ancient times know of our well founded efforts to ethicise (ha! take that, dictionary) omnivorism.  We are trying folks, we really are.  We have put all of this week’s grant money into considering balloon animals.

Some of you maybe scoffing, as you associate these creatures with parlour games and carnivals.  However, I am not talking about simple domesticated balloon animals.   I am talking about great sweeping herds of massive fortean creatures, blocking the sun on their nomadic trek as passenger pigeons once did sweeping across America.  And no, there would be no reliance on foul, poisonous oxygen.  These are great helium or methane filled beasts, nodding and swaying as they are blown by the currents of wind, just as giant jelly fish are swept across oceans.  Picture them now in your mind, see them billowing and filling the sky.  Tremendous storms of them.  The wondrous sight of them as they rail against the elements, indeed as they rail against their own ridiculous existence.  Observing them as over time they are pitted by hail, scarred by lightning.  And the wonder of them is that their pseudo life is no life at all, it is a mere impersonation.  Brave balloon bound hunters shall pursue them without ethical quandary, intrepid mountaineers shall stalk them to their winter homes, small children and we here at the laboratory shall wonder at them.

O!  If only we could get some nutrition into their skins!  Some flavour into the rubber.  Some texture into their form.  And find some way to stop giant sea turtles from choking on them in their thousands when they critters deflate and drop into the sea.  Perhaps it is impossible.  But is not the dream as important as any mere actuality?  At least this dream can unite us all, omnivores, carnivores, vegetarians, vegans, fruitarians, lacto-vegetarians, lacto-ovo-vegetarians, pescetarians, pollotarians, and pollo-pescetarians, the dream of the hunt of the giant pseudo-beasts in the sky that can sustain us all without troubling our consciences.

Until then, at least we have salad.

[“Life’s Solution” by Simon Conway Morris, p112 ‘Fortean bladders’]

Joe Chip, you are such a child, you hide your feelings by joking about them, you cannot even write the word “LOVE” – there, was that so hard?  Now, I want you to really chow down, there, get stuck into it, a great big plate of love.  There is going to be a lot of work in this taste test, Joe.  You have to work your way through a kilometre (1) of chocolate before you even get to the cardboard of pulped cards.  There are so many layers to this planet.  I know no human should have to eat roses, but Joe, it is for science, you cannot let a few mouthfuls of thorns get in your way.  Stuffed animals and inedible poem after inedible poem.  I know Joe, I feel your pain.  Here is a hard bit – you are going to fall a great distance through a void.  Your guts are going to flip, they will flop, your hormones will go astray, yes, even though you are a boy.  It won’t seem empty for a while, there are giga-years of trite and awful songs to accompany you, the god-awful soundtrack to your descent (2).

Are you in the darkness Joe?  Do you feel the pressure of the vacuum?  How rarefied the air, here in the middle.  How lonely you are!  But I want you to persist.  You are too far for the lights of distant galaxies to penetrate.  You are going to have to do this by touch.  You will need to trust that you still have senses, and that there is something to detect.

Feel them?  The rocks?  The weathered crusts, the wrinkles?  There is no air blowing down here, Joe.  If anything is smooth, it is because it is worn by years.  Don’t bite Joe, it will break your teeth.  There are no soft centres here.  There are no soft exteriors.  Not down in the pit of love.  This love is ugly, Joe.  This love is ancient couples, sculpted by years.  This love sits quietly next to a shell that memory has deserted.  This love feeds a child that can never love back.  This love is dribbling, Joe.  This love has forgotten its dreams and turns up to work each day.  Its nails are broken, its fingers blue.  None of this love is what it was, Joe.  None of it is what it thought it would be.  It is spastic, it is crippled, it is overweight, it is anaemic, it is windblown and time torn, years shrunk and care worn.  This love endured, Joe.  It is ugly.  It is beautiful.

Yes Joe, I know it is hard to taste with that crass red rayon teddy caught between your teeth (3).  I wish you could have skipped that level, or taken a more expensive route at least (4).   The things you do for science (5).


(1)  Science is metric.

(2) ha ha, he is falling in love.

(3) cheap lingerie, the scabby gifts men buy for themselves but pretend even to themselves that it is for someone else.  French maids outfit, anyone?  Sexy nurse, perhaps?

(4) such is the level of our funding.

(5) Happy Valentine’s Day, scientists.  Your mate loves youse all!