Planning for the future

ELECTROLUX workers are being encouraged to seek financial advice now about their future options and not wait until their jobs are terminated.
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Orange Credit Union corporate services manager Gavin Cook said staff at the financial institution, which was established by Email workers, would do everything they could to provide financial advice for workers, even though Electrolux employees now only make up a small percentage of its customer base.

“We now have 16,000 members so our base is quite diverse and although we don’t have all the employees as our clients, we do have a percentage and we are willing to help,” Mr Cook said.

“It is important that people start to make a plan now, including those people who have worked at the plant for 40 years and may get a significant redundancy.

“For us it is business as usual, but of course our heritage is as the Email Credit Union.”

Mr Cook said it was impossible to comment on how the loss of jobs at the Orange plant in 2015 and 2016 would impact on individual clients.

“That is a complex and individual issue with so many different factors taken into consideration,” he said.

“But overall our aim, goal and objective is to get people to contact us now, so planning can start.”

[email protected]南京夜网.au

START PLANNING NOW: Orange Credit Union corporate services manager Gavin Cook encourages Electrolux workers to seek financial advice. Photo: JUDE KEOGH 1028gavincook

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Bushfire fight far from over

BATHURST residents woke once again this morningto find a thick, smoky haze blanketing the city.
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And while the immediate threat from the State Mine Fire near Lithgow has eased, and many firefighters are taking a well-earned rest, some crews still remain on the battlefront, concentrating their efforts on mopping up the fire edge.

“Most of the ground crews have finished up and there are only a few local crews patrolling around Hartley Vale,” Superintendent Tom Shirt from the Chifley/Lithgow Rural Fire Service said.

“But there is still plenty of fire activity in the Wollemi National Park and we have 42 remote area firefighters in the Marrangaroo fire camp. These are specialists who are continuing to work with helicopter crews.

“And the smoke that enveloped Bathurst yesterday morning came from the northern end of the Grose Valley. An overnight easterly whipped it up and pushed it this way.”

Supt Shirt was glowing in his praise of the Chifley strike team personnel who manned five tankers, saying they were invaluable in protecting life and property during the last few weeks.

“The crews from Chifley area are back at home after more than a week of working day and night,” he said. “The effort from those crews was absolutely fantastic.”

The State Mine Fire, which destroyed thousands of hectares in the Lithgow, Hawkesbury and Blue Mountains areas, has been downgraded to a watch and act alert – but that still may change, Supt Shirt said.

“Conditions are not horrendous, like last week,” he said.

“But it is still inhospitable country, that’s why we need the remote area specialists.

“We are now working to ‘lock in’ the fire. Strategic back-burning continues as we try to reinforce containment lines.”

And with precious little rain on the horizon and summer yet to come, Supt Shirt was keen to reinforce the warnings that have been issued in the past few weeks, because fears remain that the worst is yet to come.

He said homeowners need to be prepared for the fire season.

NOT OVER YET: Strategic back-burning continues in the Blue Mountains.

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Work to do on the region’s job losses

NEITHER federal Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane nor our local parliamentarians have had any success in saving the jobs of some 540 Electrolux employees but there remains a crucial role for them to play in the months ahead.
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As the thinking behind the parent company’s decision is revealed it is becoming clear that Orange has been out of its global game plan for some time and not even management in Orange knew of the production hurdle which had to be cleared to keep the gates open.

It is hardly surprising then that Electrolux at a national and international level had no interest in heeding Mr Macfarlane’s call to delay its decision until a federal assistance proposal had been put together.

Today will be the first of many meetings between local MPs at a federal and state level, council staff and bureaucrats who could help put a support package in place for affected workers and the local economy.

NSW Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham may be a little premature in lashing Prime Minister Abbott and Premier O’Farrell for not getting involved but no one should doubt his passion.

The Greens spokesman on regional development is right to focus the community’s attention on the level of support a city like Geelong is getting to help it over the closure of the Ford plant, or the response in the Illawarra to Bluescope Steel ceasing steel production. Tens of millions of dollars are being made available in these cases.

These were big job losses too, but in terms of the impact on the local economies the scale of the impact on Orange and the region is in the same league.

Canberra and Macquarie Street need to remember that it is not just Orange which will feel the blow. Simplot’s downsizing in Bathurst and mine closures in Lithgow point to a regional problem which demands a substantial state and national response.

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Valuable partnership has Tigers well placed

Ben Howarth only made 8 for Colts as his side collapsed to be all out for 123 against Rugby. Photo: Kathryn O’SullivanCRICKET
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A 113-run partnership between Yogi Chawla and Don Skinner has Newtown well placed after day one of their Pinnington Cup clash with South Dubbo at Lady Cutler 4.

Coming together with the score at 4-67 Chawla and Skinner put on the century stand in 33 overs to have Newtown at 8-218 at stumps.

Chawla top-scored with 85 while Skinner made 40 as the Tigers batted all day, with the plan of a first innings victory next week now at the forefront of their minds.

After winning the toss the Tigers started slowly with Mike and Marty Jeffrey both falling before the score was 20 as the Hornets opted to open the bowling with the spin of Nathan Astri.

The game was evenly poised at 4-67 after 24 overs but Chawla and Skinner took the game away from the Tigers.

Elliot Carlin was the next best and remains 16 not out while the wickets were shared for Newtown with Latham Craig the pick with 2-23 from 7.

Jack Busch (2-42), Andrew Cusack (1-19), Josh Smith (1-30) and Astri (1-44) were the other wicket-takers.

o o o

Macquarie will fancy their chances of a comfortable first innings victory next week after outclassing CYMS Cougars on day one of their clash at John McGrath 1.

Batting first, the Cougars struggled to put any meaningful partnerships together and suffered a late innings collapse to be all out for just 98, with Vinay Kapila taking 4-11 from 10 overs.

CYMS started in a solid fashion, with Warren Dodd Jr and Alex Bonham both getting starts before falling for 21 and 19 respectively.

From there Kapila, assisted well by Shane Dupille (2-17) and Ben Page (2-31), ran through the Cougars line-up with the last seven wickets falling for just 27 runs. In reply Luke Patis and Ed Haylock put together a patient and well-made 55 runs in the final 25 overs as the Cougars bowlers failed to make a breakthrough before stumps and now face an uphill battle to avoid their second straight defeat.

Patis (21 not out) and Haylock (26 not out) will return to the crease next week with a further 44 runs needed for first innings points.

o o o

A late innings collapse from the RSL-Colts line-up will give Rugby hope leading into next week but things still hang in the balance after the first day of their match at No 3 Oval.

Colts were set for a big total with the score at 2-87 but a collapse of 8-36 saw them all out for 123 with Rugby at 3-63 at stumps.

After winning the toss and batting, Colts started well with openers Lyndon Whitney (29) and Adam Baraclough (27) setting a solid platform but when Glenn Shepherd removed Whitney and Jakke Gardiner it signalled a stream of wickets with Blake Watmore the chief destroyer of the middle order, finishing with 4-12 from six overs.

Shepherd finished with 2-29 while Bart Goodman, Al Horrocks and Garry Goodman were the other wicket-takers.

Rugby batted for the final 24 overs of the day and find themselves 3-65 at stumps.

Dale Watmore (6) and Ross Horrocks (0) will be mindful of the way the Colts innings ended when they return to the crease next week in search of first innings points.

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Motbey’s five-wicket haul sets up Hornet’s win

CRICKET
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Motbey finished with the impressive figures of 5-10 from six overs for the defending third grade premiers as Newtown were bowled out for just 61.

The Hornets chased down their target with minimal fuss and Motbey was there at the end to finish with 6 not out in a memorable day.

After winning the toss and batting, Newtown made it to 27 without loss before Matt Wakely removed Brian McKinnonn and when Motbey had last week’s century-maker, Craig Pettit, caught for 12 it wasn’t long before the innings was all over.

Motbey was the by far the best with the ball while Wakely, Henry Railz, Scott Dwarte and John Byrne each picked up one scalp.

Henry Railz top-scored in reply, making just 13, but it was enough as the Newtown Gold bowlers toiled hard and took five wickets despite defending such a low total.

Tom Barber took 3-15 while Craig Edenborough was unplayable, bowling a great spell to finish with the figures of 2-0 from 4.2 overs but it was all in vain as Souths cruised to a five-wicket win.

o o o

It was Macquarie who came out on top at John McGrath 2 on Saturday in a thrilling match with Rugby.

Set 119 for victory the Blues overcame the late loss of 4-19 to win by two wickets.

Batting first Rugby had a number of batsmen make starts but no one went on to make a big score with Wayne Munro the best with 32.

Brad Hart (3-12) and James Hughes (3-29) were the best with the ball for the Blues who were in trouble early in reply when they found themselves at 2-20.

But a 44-run partnership between Dave Murray and Bharath Ramakrishnappa got their side back on track and despite the mini-collapse the Blues batsmen did enough to get their side home.

o o o

An unbeaten 66 to opening batsman Zeke Spradbrow guided CYMS to a seven wicket victory over Rugby Youth Development (YD) at Bob Dowling 4.

Lachlan Harper’s 59 helped the young Rugby side to the competitive total of 6-153 from their 40 overs but Spradbrow’s innings, which included 10 boundaries, set the tone for the Cougars as they chased down the total with five overs to spare.

The Cougars bowlers shared the six Rugby wickets as Harper was assisted by Grant Berryman (37) and H Fairall to set the total but Spradbrow, Mark Hawke (32) and Brodie Parkinson (20) all combined to seal the Cougars’ second win of the season.

o o o

In the Colts derby at Lady Cutler South 1, it was the YD side who had a dominant victory, defeating their clubmates by 74 runs.

Garry Ashford blasted six fours and five sixes as he top scored for Colts YD with 88 and his innings set-up the victory and then Michael Parish sealed it with 5-38 from eight overs.

Parish was the second top-scorer behind Ashford, hitting 21 not out late in the innings, but the damage had already been done as the number three’s powerful innings demoralised the Colts’ bowlers.

Ben Bruce top scored for Colts with 29 in their innings but it was no where near enough as Parish took the first four wickets inside 10 overs to give the youngsters bragging rites until they next meet.

o o o

No score given for Newtown Black v South Dubbo Hornets YD

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Milestone total as Phantoms take down Yanco Hotel

LDCA A grade cricket
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PHANTOMS posted the highest score of their short A grade tenure to secure a 39-run win over Yanco Hotel at Yanco Sportsground on Saturday.

Led by a patient half-century by Ryan Thurgood (51), Phantoms were bowled out on the last over of the innings to finish on 151.

However, it was Paul Werner’s eight-over spell in the second innings that ripped the heart out of Hotel’s chase for glory as he took five consecutive middle-order wickets for 27 runs to shut down any fightback.

Thurgood was the constant for Phantoms, featuring in seven partnerships. Greg Halloran (18) proved a valuable partner, as did Richard Keith (10) and Adam Hopkins (12).

Lusty late hitting by David Haksins (18) ensured the competitive total was reached.

All six Hotel bowlers took wickets, with Mark Doyle (2-15) having the best return.

Mark Burns, Brandon Emerson and Luke Pygram also took two each, with singles to Rick Harrison and Jordan Camm.

The run chase was a tense affair, with Hotel always in with a chance even as wickets fell.

Opener Doyle (62) was the danger man, accumulating runs in classic style, dispatching the bad ball to the boundary and pushing for ones and twos.

After losing Emerson early, Doyle put on 41 with Jordan Camm (9) and 24 with Luke Pygram (11), but in the end was running out of partners after Werner’s dipping medium pace cut through the middle like a hot knife.

The return of Adam Hopkins (3-24) with the breeze signalled the end for Doyle, nicking behind while trying to keep pace with the run rate required as he watched partners going back to the sheds.

Steve Weckert chipped in with 2-21 as Hotel lost 5-12 to end its innings on 112.

PHANTOMS opener Ryan Thurgood posted a half-century to help his side to a win over Yanco Hotel.

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SCG worker ‘smuggled’ in derby flare

A contract worker on the SCG redevelopment has been sacked for allegedly smuggling a flare into Allianz Stadium hours before the weekend’s A-League derby.
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For 90 minutes on Saturday evening, Allianz Stadium vibrated amid the noise and colour of 40,388 passionate fans who turned the venue into a sea of blue, red and black. But it was the orange tinge of two flares lit inside the Western Sydney Wanderers’ supporters bay that caught the eye of authorities.

Police and security had searched the stadium before the match for any banned objects but still two flares were let off during the game in the south end of the venue, which was occupied by Wanderers’ fans, along with several ”bungers” – small fireworks that give off a loud sound.

Security officers were later shocked to find that a supporter working at the SCG had allegedly misused his position to bypass authorities. A private building contractor had his employment terminated on Monday after allegedly sneaking inside and hiding a flare inside piping beneath seats reserved for the Wanderers supporter group, the Red and Black Bloc.

It is understood the man was picked up during a review of CCTV footage by the SCG Trust security unit. He is alleged to have accessed the south end of the stadium in the hours before the match, using his position as a third-party contractor to gain entrance and hide the flare.

Stadium security were alerted to the man’s suspicious behaviour because employees contracted to work on the upgrade of the stands at the SCG are not permitted to stray away from the construction site. It is understood the man was sacked immediately after his employer was notified by the authorities. He may face other legal repercussions.

Football Federation Australia was notified of the incident but is waiting to see if there are any further findings before deciding what action it might take.

”We’re not not in a position to comment because this alleged incident is subject to legal proceedings,” an FFA spokesman said.

SCG Trust officials took a vigilant stance against those who lit flares at the Sydney derby after a crowd safety officer suffered burns to his hand while trying to defuse a flare inside the ground. It is understood the safety officer was attempting to retrieve a flare lit inside a section occupied by Wanderers supporters but it fell onto his arm after a member of the crowd kicked it along the ground. He was treated for burns at the venue but was not hospitalised. There is no suggestion that the two incidents were linked.

The venue management was also angry that many seats were destroyed in the south end of the ground, especially after they had been forced to replace seats destroyed by fans in the Wanderers supporter end following the A-League grand final in April.

An NSW Police spokeswoman confirmed there were three flares lit in total, with two of them ignited at the same time inside the Wanderers supporter bay and another outside the ground after the game. Police said that despite the isolated cases of flares or fireworks, the crowd was generally well behaved – only a few fans were ejected, mostly for issues relating to intoxication.

“For a crowd of more than 40,000, we were pleased to see most spectators enjoy the game safely,” she said. ”Unfortunately, there were a small number of people who overdid it and were promptly ejected from the match.

“We will be working with FFA to ensure those who were dealt with … receive their banning notice – along with fines or court attendance notice – so they can’t spoil another game this season.”

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Marquee magic from Middle East

The roses are being tended, outfits are being selected, invitations are (hopefully) landing, and construction of the marquees has begun. Each year the stakes at Flemington are raised, on and off the track. Marquees hosts continually strive to better their previous efforts – and trump the competition with their fitout, service and food.
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For the past few years Emirates has hosted one of the Birdcage’s biggest marquees. This year, the theme is Dubai, the airline’s home. It’s a city that inspires superlatives – the world’s tallest building, biggest aquarium, largest designer shoe store – so expect the marquee to wow.

Modelled on an ancient citadel, it will cover 600 square metres and include a separate dining room, a large terrace and internal walls four metres high. As a contingency against Melbourne’s inclement weather, the terrace will be covered by two Bedouin-style canvas tents. Designed by Katrina Regan from event management agency CI Events, the marquee will take about 30 days to build and involve a team of 10 carpenters, painters, plumbers, electricians and labourers.

The marquee will offer a three-metre-high deck so guests can see the track from inside and out, traditional Arabic dancing and a host of celebs in their racing finest. And the Mumm will flow freely.

Dubai-based Nasser Iskeirjah, who has just celebrated his first year as Emirates’ executive chef, will oversee the menu. He spent two days in Melbourne last month working with Epicure Catering to perfect authentic Middle Eastern flavours. Even familiar dishes such as hummus can be tricky to get right, Iskeirjah says, ”as it’s all about how you put it together”.

But he left delighted with the resulting canapes, such as marinated watermelon with pomegranate, labneh, rose and pistachio, and yellowfin tuna kibbe nayeh, cracked wheat, crushed avocado, preserved lemon and dukkah. ”I know I give the chefs there a headache but they realise it’s worth it,” he says, laughing.

Prawn machbous, one of the United Arab Emirates’ best-known dishes, will be served as a main during the spring racing carnival.

The pilaf-style dish includes prawns marinated in a distinctive spice blend and basmati rice. Variations might replace the prawns with another type of seafood, chicken or lamb, or tweak the spices, but they usually include turmeric, white pepper, cinnamon, cumin, nutmeg, chilli powder, coriander, allspice, cardamom and dried lime.

Prawn machbous

600g green prawns, peeled and deveined

400g basmati rice

20g machbous spice mix (see recipe below)

10g coriander leaves, finely chopped

75ml corn or vegetable oil

50g chopped onion

10g chopped garlic

1 loomi (dried lime, available at specialty stores)

15g butter

40g tomato paste

150g tomato, chopped, peeled and deseeded

700ml water

Salt to taste

MACHBOUS SPICE MIX

250g ground turmeric

10g ground white pepper

45g ground cinnamon

62g ground cumin

10g ground nutmeg

6g chilli powder

45g ground coriander

25g ground allspice

20g cardamom

10g dried lemon powder (available at specialty stores)

1. Wash the basmati rice three times and soak for one hour.

2. Marinate the prawns with half the machbous spices and half of the freshly chopped coriander leaves.

3. Roast marinated prawns in the oven at 180C for 4 minutes or until half cooked.

4. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan over medium high heat and gently fry the onion until soft, then add chopped garlic, crushed loomi and butter.

5. Add remaining machbous spice, cook for 15 seconds, then add tomato paste and cook for 2 minutes.

6. Add the rest of the coriander and chopped tomato. Stir and continue cooking for 3 minutes, add salt to taste.

7. Add water, bring to boil, then add strained rice, fold in prawns, bring to boil again, and check seasoning.

8. Cover with a tight lid and cook over low heat for 20 minutes, or until most of the liquid has been absorbed.

For the spice mix Mix all the ingredients together. Store in an airtight container in a cool, dark place.

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Reputation and scarcity keep prices up

The pricing of really expensive wines is based on what the market is prepared to cop. Photo: Erin JonassonWhat is the justification for the huge price range we see for wines? I get that some wine is made by boutique producers, but I also notice that craft beers and ciders don’t cost significantly more than the big brands.
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Cast your mind back, if you can bear it, to your year 11 economics class. You were listening to the bits about economies of scale, but by the time your teacher made it to the theory of utility you were probably dozing off, enjoying a quiet cigarette in the amenities block or reading furtive texts from your mates. (Don’t think teachers can’t tell. As they say, why else would you be looking down at your groin and smiling?)

It is true that big producers have the capacity to make and sell wine much more cheaply than smaller ones, but as you have doubtless observed, not all wines made by big producers are cheap and not all small-producer wines are especially expensive.

The pricing of really expensive wines is based on what the market is prepared to cop, with supply, demand and mystique all playing a part. The specific parcels of land on which these grapes are grown are relatively small – think of Domaine de la Romanee-Conti or, in Australia, Hill of Grace – and regardless of whether you think the flavour warrants the jaw-dropping spend, the reputation of these wines and their scarcity keep prices high and investors interested.

Beers and ciders – excellent drinks that they are – don’t have an investment market in the way that wine does. Moving back towards the middle price ranges, reputation and spin do play a part but there are genuine, significant costs that influence the price of a bottle of wine.

Premium grapes make premium wine and they cost more to grow. Anything done by hand – pruning and picking are just two examples – costs much more than doing it with machinery. Organic vineyards typically demand more time and attention than those in which chemicals control disease and weeds. I could go on, but then I’d bore you as much as an economics class might.

A word of caution about not-that-expensive ”craft” beers and ciders. As with wine, quite a few of those bottles you’re seeing on booze-barn shelves with quirky names and labels are produced by corporates quietly cashing in on the thirst for drinks made in small batches by small producers.

If you really want to support craft producers, visit a brewery and know what you’re buying.

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Roadtesting the EspressGo portable car coffee machine

The Lavazza in car espressogo coffee machine. Photo: Eddie Jim The portable Lavazza EspressGo. Photo: Eddie Jim
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Roll up, roll up for the car, caravan or boat with everything – SatNav, HandsFree, DVD player, CigaretteLighter and the EspressGo, a portable version of Lavazza’s A Modo Mio capsule coffee machine.

The EspressGo looks like a high-tech thermos with an ”on” button, a temperature dial and a 12-volt plug. The lid doubles as a portafilter: unscrew it, fill the reservoir with 50ml of cold water (”non gassata” the Italian instructions advise, because Italians use bottled water for everything), pop a capsule in and screw the lid back on.

Plug it into the cigarette lighter, press the ”on” button and it starts to brew.

Actually, it starts to vibrate noisily as the pump pressurises; disconcerting the first time. The vibrating lasts about a minute, but as the manual warns, ”When the motor noise stops, it does not mean that the machine is ready!”. It will fool anyone who hasn’t RTFM: at this point the water isn’t hot enough to extract coffee. You need to ”wait until you hear 3 bleeps (approx 2 minutes)”. The Italian is more elegant: in that country you’ll be waiting for ”3 segnali sonori”.

The progress to 3 bleeps is indicated by the thermometer needle sweeping towards 10. Around 8 you hear the water start to boil.

In our tests the 3 bleeps sounded at 3 minutes 30 seconds; either my car’s inferior German electrical system or the Italians’ elastic sense of time – you choose.

Unplug it, invert it over a cup (not on the upholstery – I just had Das Auto cleaned), and press the button: a foamy stream of coffee is expressed.

Lavazza’s A Modo Mio range includes 10 blends of increasing roast intensity. The capsules with the test model were at seven on the scale (”appassionatamente”), and the coffee was second-crack smoky in flavour, with quite a creamy body. I’d hate to think what lies beyond, though 10, ”vigorosamente”, is available only in Italy (and probably only at card bars and Autostrada truck stops). One of the lighter blends might taste sweeter.

The EspressGo makes one cup at a time.

A passenger could operate it with the car in motion at the risk of a coffee scalding, but drivers should probably wait for the hands-free version.

Lavazza EspressGo, $199, lavazza南京夜网.au.

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DIY Mexican

Tom Dalton whips up a chocolate mole cocktail at Mamasita. Photo: Justin McManus Tostaditas at Mamasita. Photo: Eddie Jim
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Melbourne’s Mexican wave shows little sign of abating and while it’s become as easy as a schoolyard chant to reel off Melbourne’s popular Mexican eateries – ”Mamasita-Touche Hombre-Fonda-Chingon-cha-cha-cha!” – there’s more to explore than a mere taco smackdown. Mexico’s Day of the Dead is just around the corner (October 31 to November 2), a massive celebration that remembers the dearly departed with colourful graveside parties, so now’s the perfect time to delve deeper into Melbourne’s Mexican scene.1. Mexican breakfast

It’s not unusual to see huevos rancheros on a cafe menu these days but the diner at Acland St Cantina pushes the breakfast envelope to include spiced-up morning versions of tacos, burritos and quesadillas, as well as a creamy Oaxacan hot chocolate. It’s the best wake-up your taste buds could ask for.

Acland St Cantina, 2 Acland Street, St Kilda, 9536 1175, aclandstcantina南京夜网.au2. Tequila flight

Tequila has long been misunderstood by those who have tangled with it and lost, but a tasting flight is a great way to learn more about it. At Mamasita, a basic flight of three small pours will compare tequilas of the same age but differing regions or distilleries, or tequilas from the same distillery but of differing ages. Entry-level flights start at $30. More adventurous flights are $110 for three 50ml pours and take-home skull bottles.

Mamasita, level 1, 11 Collins Street, city, 9650 3821, mamasita南京夜网.au3. Chilli central

With names that sound like off-brand super-heroes – Taipan Venom, Morning Afterburn, Devil’s Delirium – Chilli Obsession stocks the stuff of Scoville-fuelled dreams. There is a massive range of hot sauces (with many available to sample) as well as dried chillies, and chilli plants when they’re in season. USA Foods in Moorabbin also carries plenty of hot sauces, or you can hit Aztec Products for dried numbers.

Chilli Obsession, shop 5, 47-53 Olinda-Monbulk Road, Olinda 9751 0881; USA Foods, 67-73 Cochranes Road, Moorabbin, 8672 9107, usafoods南京夜网.au; Aztec Products, 8a Adina Court, Tullamarine, 9330 1733, aztecmexican南京夜网.au.4. Ditch the queues and go truckin’

Bizarrely, the more Mexican restaurants Melbourne has, the longer the queues seem to get. Ditch the waiting and instead check out the nearest taco truck. Follow them on Twitter or download the free wherethetruckat app to see who’s nearby and how quickly you can be tucking into chargrilled corn on the cob. You might strike Chingon’s bronze beauty of a van, the flame-red Dos Diablos, the classic Taco Truck or, further down the peninsula, Gidget’s Cantina.

app.wherethetruck.at; @ChingonTacoTruc; @tacotruckmelb; @DosDiablosTruck; @GidgetsCantina5. Buy the book

Tim White from Books for Cooks has seen a spike in demand for Mexican cookbooks, noting there are always at least two shelves heaving with culinary guides to the region. If you want to learn more about cooking Mexican, popular authors to explore include Rick Bayless, Diana Kennedy and Roberto Santibanez.

Books for Cooks, 233 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy, 8415 1415, booksforcooks南京夜网.au.6. Cook it yourself

Classes are a great way to gain a deeper knowledge of a cuisine. Trupp Cooking School in South Yarra runs a six-hour class ($208) with an emphasis on dishes you can easily recreate at home. Cheltenham’s Relish Mama runs a three-hour demonstration-based class ($130). For a classroom with a difference, Hazel Jones runs the Junk Food Cooking School, where classes (four hours, $145) are run out of a genuine Chinese junk moored at the Docklands. You’ll learn how to make your own tortillas, mole, corn bread, elotes and kingfish ceviche, then you’ll wine and dine on the spoils.

Trupp Cooking School, shop 1, 53 Barry Street, South Yarra, 9826 9119, truppcookingschool南京夜网; Relish Mama, shop 1, 347 Bay Road, Cheltenham, 9553 4846, relishmama南京夜网.au; Junk Food Cooking School, Harbour Esplanade, Docklands, 0403 568 999, junkfoodcookingschool南京夜网.au.7. Get the groceries

Once you get into Mexican cooking, it’s an addictive wonderland to explore. Head to Casa Iberica for an extensive range of Mexican groceries. Oasis Bakery, which is essentially Middle Eastern, stocks some Mexican dry goods while online stores like guacamalle南京夜网.au have a huge range, including cute Mexican sweets. Acland St Cantina’s take-home recipe kits are a fun starting point – you may strike a red mole kit, complete with dried chillies, seeds, nuts, tomatillos, spices and chocolate.

Casa Iberica, 25 Johnston Street, Fitzroy, 9419 4420, casaibericadeli南京夜网.au; Oasis Bakery, shop 9, 993 North Road, Murrumbeena, 9570 1122, oasisbakery南京夜网.au.8. Meet the (tortilla) press

If you’re having friends over for a Mexican feast, why not make your own tortillas from scratch? Pick up a cast iron tortilla press from Aztec Products ($33.80) or Oasis Bakery ($38). If you’re not confident about making your own masa (dough), El Cielo in Port Melbourne sells kilo balls of white corn masa (among many other Mexican goodies) for a mere $3, so you’re good to go.

El Cielo, shop 5, 177 Salmon Street, Port Melbourne, 9646 1457, elcielo南京夜网.au.9. Get them fresh

If you don’t have faith in your own tortilla-making skills, head to the backstreets of Kensington, where a bright flash of cobalt blue signals La Tortilleria, a simple Mexican eatery with a hypnotic, high-tech tortilla bakery and an authentic ”nixtamal” method. They stone-grind their own corn for the tortillas, which you can buy fresh to use at home or freeze for later.

La Tortilleria, 72 Stubbs Street, Kensington, 9376 5577, latortilleria南京夜网.au and El Ceilo (see above).10. Plate it right

Although a messy taco requires little more than a fistful of napkins, a sumptuous mole deserves a bright plate. Market Import, tucked away behind Armadale Station, is a kaleidoscope of colourful crockery, platters, glassware and tin mirrors from Mexico, while Gertrude Street’s Amor y Locura imports handwoven fruit trays and platters.

Market Import, 19 Morey Street, Armadale 9500 0764, marketimport南京夜网.au; Amor y Locura, 77 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy, 9486 0270, amorylocura南京夜网.11. Mexican for vegetarians

It’s not a major challenge to be a vegetarian faced with a Mexican menu, but some places make it even easier. Fitzroy’s Trippy Taco features an all-veg menu, including a tofu asada burrito with goat’s cheese, salsa and lime, and many dishes can easily be switched to vegan and/or gluten-free versions.

Trippy Taco, 234 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy, 9415 7711, trippytaco南京夜网.au.

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Waffles are not just for breakfast

Buttermilk waffles with maple bacon butter. Photo: Steven Siewert. Food: Jill Dupleix Hot Food: Buttermilk waffles. Photo: Steven Siewert
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What are they?

Crisp, golden, deeply gridded batter cakes baked in a waffle iron or electric waffle-maker. Descendants of the 12th-century French walfre and Dutch wafel, they’re gaining ground on local menus as all-day breakfasts, desserts, and increasingly, as savoury snacks.Where is it?

Respect, please, for the duck waffles at Melbourne’s Cumulus Up wine bar, stuffed with shredded duck confit and topped with foie gras parfait and sticky prunes.

At the light, bright, new Touchwood Cafe, chef Tristan White’s heart-shaped wholemeal waffles come with peanut butter and jelly (reduced raspberry compote) and whipped peanut butter ricotta and peanut brittle. ”It’s awesome,” says owner Jamie McBride. ”A lot of people order it after their bacon and eggs, and share it as a breakfast dessert.”

In Sydney, it’s the waffles at Surry Hill’s Paramount Coffee Project that take the cake. Head chef Brett Barbuto not only cooks sweet waffles with peanut butter ice-cream, dulce de leche and hazelnuts on the Roller Grill waffle iron, but also savoury waffles topped with guacamole, sour cream, grilled peppers, fried eggs, and bloody mary salsa. ”People were a little unsure how to approach eating them at first,” says Barbuto.

”Now we’re selling almost as many as the crab po’ boy.”Why do I care?

Because that deep gridwork of dimples traps all the butter, maple syrup, honey, cream or ice-cream your heart can cope with.Can I do them at home?

Yes, as long as you have an old-school waffle iron or a flash new Breville waffle-maker (from $59.95).Sourcing

VIC

Cumulus Up, 45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne, 03 9650 1445

Touchwood, 480 Bridge Road, Richmond, 03 9429 9347

NSW

Paramount Coffee Project, 80 Commonwealth Street, Surry Hills, 02 9211 1122.

RECIPEButtermilk waffles with maple bacon butter

For super-crisp bacon, lay the rashers flat on an oven tray and bake at 190 degrees for 10 minutes.

2 large eggs, separated

375ml buttermilk

2 tbsp melted butter

1 tsp vanilla extract

225g self-raising flour

1 tsp ground cinnamon

Pinch of sea salt

1 tbsp caster sugar

Maple syrup for serving

For the maple bacon butter:

100g softened butter

1 tbsp maple syrup

4 rashers crisp bacon

1. To make the maple bacon butter, crush the crisp bacon into bits and beat into the butter with the maple syrup. Chill until required.

2. Whisk the egg yolks lightly then whisk in the buttermilk, melted butter and vanilla. Sift the flour, cinnamon and salt into a second bowl and stir in the sugar. Make a well in the centre and add the egg mixture, mixing lightly until smooth.

3. Beat the egg whites until stiff and fold into the batter.

4. Heat the waffle-iron or waffle-maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

5. To cook the waffles, ladle the batter into each mould and cook for 5 minutes or until golden. Serve with maple bacon butter and extra maple syrup.

Serves: 4

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Britain’s phone-hacking trial: Juror selection begins with verdict not expected until Easter next year

Defendants: Rebekah Brooks and husband Charlie arrive at the Old Bailey for the start of their trial. Photo: Kirsty WigglesworthJurors at the so-called ‘trial of the century’ will likely not be handing down their verdicts until well into next year.
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Around Easter, their ‘guilty’ or ‘not guilty’ could decide the fate of not only some of the UK’s most high-profile journalists, but entire media empires.

But in the meantime they have been given an early, tough decision: do they want to spend the next four or five months of their lives listening to the ins and outs of the phone hacking saga?

Monday was the first day of the trial at the Old Bailey, where eight defendants faced charges relating to alleged phone-hacking and payments to public officials at the now-defunct News of the World newspaper.

The defendants include Rupert Murdoch’s star protégé and confidante Rebekah Brooks, former chief executive of News International and editor of the News of the World; her husband Charlie Brooks, and Andy Coulson, former editor of the News of the World and Downing Street’s communications director.

The other defendants are Ian Edmondson, former editor of the NOTW, Stuart Kuttner, the paper’s former managing editor, Clive Goodman its former royal editor, Mark Hanna, former head of security at News International and Cheryl Carter, former PA to Ms Brooks.

Ian Edmondson, Rebekah Brooks, Andy Coulson and Stuart Kuttner are charged with conspiring to hack mobile phone voicemails.

Mr Goodman, Mr Coulson and Ms Brooks also face charges over alleged payments to public officials. And Brooks, her husband, Carter and Hanna have been charged over alleged concealment of evidence.

The trial is attracting intense media interest – with 20 reporters in the courtroom, another 50 in a nearby annex, and many more exchanging comments and observations on Twitter.

However, tweeting or texting from the court will be banned during the trial.

Daily Telegraph columnist Peter Oborne dubbed it the “trial of the century”, predicting “Hollywood movies are going to be made about Rebekah Brooks, guilty or not guilty, and her journey from the Cheshire village of Daresbury to become the most powerful and courted woman in Britain.”

Hollywood producer Gene Kirkwood has reportedly already optioned a Vanity Fair profile of her, with Nicole Kidman suggested for the lead.

However, the movie will almost certainly not feature Monday’s events.

Ms Brooks arrived at court amid the glare of camera flashes (and on the wings of one of Britain’s worst storms in years), but the events in court were merely procedural.

Such a criminal trial normally begins with the prosecution and defence agreeing on questions to put to potential jurors – who are then sent home for the night to consult with family and employers about the ramifications of taking on a trial expected to run for at least four months, with scores of witnesses.

The prosecution is expected to open its case on Tuesday or Wednesday.

Andrew Edis QC, leading the prosecution, was named ‘crime silk of the year’ this month and the award citation noted he was “at the very top of the list for serious crime”, with several successful high-profile prosecutions under his belt including former MP Chris Huhne.

Ms Brooks also has a top silk on her side: her lead counsel Jonathan Laidlaw QC, who in a previous life as a prosecutor was involved in such cases as the IRA bombing of Canary Wharf and the Jill Dando murder trials. The Sunday Times reported that he has “lethal cross-examination skills” and a “mean way with closing speeches”.

The trial comes with the UK government and the press at loggerheads over a proposed new regulatory regime, based broadly on recommendations from the Leveson Inquiry, which the newspapers claim is an historic attack on the freedom of the press.

The Daily Telegraph reported that the solicitor general Oliver Heald wrote to the leaders of the three main political parties, asking for MPs to refrain from commenting on the case behind the legally-privileged walls of Parliament.

The trial may have ramifications, not only for future treatment of the press by politicians, but also for the political influence of Rupert Murdoch – as well as his business empire.

The Leveson Inquiry into press misbehaviour steered clear of the potential criminal actions, so this trial may see new detail of allegations about who was hacked, when and to what extent.

And the evidence may give a better picture as to exactly who at News International and News Corp knew what their employees were allegedly up to, and to what extent it may have been authorised.

Potential jurors were asked to fill in questionnaire and will return for final selection on Tuesday.

Justice John Saunders warned the jury panel they should be prepared for the case to last a long time.”This trial concerns allegations of criminal conduct at the News of the World and the Sun newspapers which preceded the closure of the News of the World,” he said.

“It’s an important case. The trial we are about to start will take a considerable length of time. It’s estimated the case may last until Easter.

“I hope that with the assistance of counsel the case will finish more quickly, but people who sit on [the jury] should be prepared for the case to go on that long.”

They were reminded not to look up anything about the case on the internet – including Google and Twitter – and were warned it was the sort of case where “people have a lot of views”.

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Sky’s now the limit for predicting heatwaves

Meteorologists may have found a way to predict some killer heatwaves up to three weeks in advance. The best they can do now is about 10 days.
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An earlier warning would help cities prepare for the heatwave, arrange to open up cooling centres and check on the elderly, said Gerald Meehl, co-author of a study that describes the forecasting clue. ”It gives you a little bit of a heads-up of what’s coming,” he said.

The key may be a certain pattern of high and low pressure spots across the globe high in the sky. When that pattern shows up, the chances double for a prolonged and intense heatwave in the eastern two-thirds of the US, according to the study published on Sunday in the journal Nature Geoscience.

This could predict some types of heatwaves but not all, meteorologists said.

The researchers at the National Centre for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, looked at heatwaves that lasted at least a week and were about 3 to 5 degrees warmer than normal.

They did thousands of computer simulations and discovered that when high pressure and low pressure systems line up in a specific pattern, it foreshadows heat to come in about 15 to 20 days. The weather on the ground at the time of the pattern really does not matter; it can be rainy, dry, hot or cold, said study lead author Haiyan Teng, a scientist at the research centre.

The same pattern that signals a US heatwave also indicates different extreme weather in other parts of the globe, like heavy rains, she said.

This wave pattern was seen before the 1980 heatwave in Dallas that was blamed for 1250 deaths, said Randall Dole, a senior scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration who did not participate in the study.

AP

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Is monogamy really flawed?

THE PLANNER OCT 26Dan SavageSavage_CAASpeakers_Photo1 credit LaRae Lobdell.jpg Photo: [email protected]南京夜网 Why monogamy is bad for you.
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Dan Savage – advice columnist, author, provocateur and parent, among other things – learnt to stop mincing words a long time ago.

Growing up in Chicago in the 1960s and ’70s, the product of a family enthusiastic in its Catholicism, there came a time when the boy they called Danny had something to say. He’d thought about it a lot, and then he finally said it. In the process he learnt that when it comes to thinking and talking about life – the forces that shape us, and the shapes we’re forced to fit – he had a talent for navigating the more complicated byways of the human head and heart.

That first brave conversation, 31 years ago, was always bound to leave a mark; it does on almost everyone who has it or hears it. ”Coming out is a process, as they say,” Savage says. ”I came out to myself at 14, 15, came out to a few friends at 16 as bisexual, I was about to come out to my parents when my parents [separated] … my dad left my mum and I actually waited a couple of years longer before I came out to my mother because I just didn’t feel like she could take those two blows at once and survive.”

But once he’d crossed that final frontier, there was no stopping him. Out to the world, he left by the wayside the faith he’d been raised in. He went to college, studying theatre and history. It wasn’t until he was almost 30, in the early 1990s, that the voice found its first major public platform – as an advice columnist for The Stranger, a new alternative weekly in Seattle – but since then it has rarely been quieted.

He’s written six books; he co-founded a theatre company; he’s a prominent American voice on some of the major social issues of the times, from abortion to gay marriage; and, with husband Terry Miller, in 2010 he created one of the most potent media projects of the age, the anti-bullying It Gets Better initiative, a video-driven concept with a powerful message that attracted even US President Barack Obama to the cause.

He still writes the advice column that started it all, Savage Love, now syndicated around the world and also available in podcast form.

Whatever the platform or outlet, the voice is bold, blunt, often contrary, always challenging – as it has been since he first spoke up for himself as a teenager, when he found himself and lost his religion. ”I’m grateful for my sexuality bringing me into conflict with my faith. It makes you think, without my sexuality I might have just coasted along.” He talks of ”all that shit poured into my head” as a kid – ”exclusionary, judgey, condemnatory crap”. As we said, Savage doesn’t mince his words, as Australian audiences are about to find out up close for the first time.

The Festival of Dangerous Ideas, a Sydney event with a one-day Melbourne sideshow on November 3. He is not yet in the country, but Savage has his ideas about the country he’s coming to, and on the phone to Fairfax Media he happily accepts the invitation to share them. They are based on impressions – he’s been here only once, and that was a holiday 20 years ago – but Savage is skilled at making his impressions of those impressions count.

The times here would seem to suit him, given that a bunch of his favourite topics – gay rights, sexism and, courtesy of the new incumbent of The Lodge, Catholicism – feature prominently in national debate.

”Australia, my impression is it’s a little schizoid considering the Prime Minister you dudes just elected down there,” he says. ”The gulf between very liberal laws on prostitution and other sexual-related matters and then there’s this kind of instinctual, knee-jerk conservatism when it comes to marriage equality.”

That Australia would be ”the last country in the Anglosphere to legalise marriage equality” baffles him. ”Australia’s looking a little bit like you guys got the Puritans and we got the convicts; it’s the wrong way round.”

He knows of Tony Abbott and knows he’s a political conservative, and for Savage that is enough to warrant withdrawing any thought of giving the new PM the benefit of the doubt: ”All I’ve seen is that one video where your former prime minister beat the shit out of him during question time, that was delicious.”

I bring him up to speed on some curiosities of the Australian moment that have escaped him, among them that the new US ambassador to Australia is a gay man with a husband – their union recognised by US law but not here. ”That’s too bad,” Savage says. ”I look forward to him meeting your new Prime Minister at a state function and introducing his husband in America, boyfriend in Australia.”

On the same theme, he learns of Abbott’s family conflict on marriage equality, and files it away as just another example of a leader choosing political convenience over doing the right thing. Remember George Bush snr, he says, whose nominating convention in 1988 was a festival of public homophobia; then last month the Republican former president was a witness at the nuptials of a lesbian couple. ”This motherf—er Abbott”, Savage says, will no doubt also see the light and support his sister’s right to marry – when he no longer needs the votes of bigots to win power.

None of this is to suggest Savage has been invited to Australia to hold forth on local politics, or even on the subject of gay marriage, an issue about which he is deeply passionate. He is coming instead to share with the festival his views on monogamy, but inevitably these issues are all of a piece – marriage, its rules, its relation to religion – and Savage dismantles with relish the conventions that govern their debate.

On marriage, for starters he contends that it is straight people who have dramatically changed the nature of the institution, and that arguments against same-sex unions are often based on notions of tradition that have long since been abandoned by heterosexuals.

”There’s a reluctance on the part of many straight people to acknowledge how they have changed marriage,” he says.

”[This] shit that we [gay people] want to redefine marriage – no, no, no. There’s this kind of nostalgia in some ways for gender roles and their legal expression. Marriage used to be a very gendered institution and it was very unfavourable for women and straight people eventually rejected that and re-created, redefined marriage to be the legal union of two autonomous people. Allowing same-sex couples to marry really does force straight people to confront what marriage is – not for us, but for them.”

Those old gender norms, he says, are now ”optional”, yet outdated traditions are the go-to argument of opponents of same-sex marriage. ”Straight people,” Savage says, ”want gay people to marry in 1813 and they get to marry in 2013.”

But when it comes to monogamy – the focus of his Australian speeches – Savage argues that in redefining the old rules of marriage, this is one area where change has not gone far enough. He believes sexual fidelity as a social norm is not merely old-fashioned but is actively damaging to relationships and the individuals within them.

A dangerous idea? It may be billed as such, but Savage seems equal parts amused and bemused that his views could be regarded that way.

”Some of the things I say about monogamy are regarded as dangerous,” he says. ”But I actually think the attitudes we hold about monogamy and the importance we place on it is more dangerous, is doing more damage, is harming marriages, is leading to more divorces than anything I’ve ever recommended that people do or think.”

He insists he is not in favour of a sexual free-for-all for committed partners. Indeed, he has coined a word, monogamish, which is how he describes his marriage to Terry Miller. (The couple were married in Canada in 2005, and again in the US when Washington state legalised same-sex unions in 2012. They have an adopted son.)

”We were monogamous for four or five years and not monogamous for 15 years,” Savage says. ”We’re blissfully happy and we still have sex all the time with each other. I coined the term for our marriage, monogamish, [because] we were so much more monogamous than not.”

But it is common sense, not his own marriage, that Savage holds out as the basis for his views. ”We tell people that humans are naturally monogamous and [it’s not] true. We know that in most serious long-term relationships, 60 per cent of the men in them will cheat, 40 per cent of the women … and we pound it into people’s heads that if there’s infidelity you must end the marriage, that the marriage is destroyed.

”It’s saying that one blow-job on a business trip should be given more weight and consideration and more importance should be attached to it than the 25 years you’ve spent together, the kids you’re raising together, the property you own together, the history you have together, the affection you still have for each other – all of that must be discarded. All of that weighs less on the scales.”

The default position should be reversed, he argues. ”It should be, ‘We’ll get through this,’ not divorce as the default.”

And the result? ”It’s going to save marriage, it’s going to make marriage better and stronger,” Savage declares.

And that, right there, is where listening to Dan Savage not mince words on life and love can lead you: from radical idea to conservative outcome, with human nature as your ever fallible guide. Dangerous? Some may think so, but you’d be mad not to buckle up and take the ride.

Dan Savage is at Melbourne’s Princess Theatre on Sunday, November 3, for the Pop-Up Festival of Dangerous Ideas, presented by the Wheeler Centre and the Sydney Opera House. Bookings wheelercentre南京夜网

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Freaks and treats for comedy geeks

If you had a third, superfluous, ear growing at the back of your neck, there are several options. You could keep your hair long and wear high-collared garments. You could quietly seek medical advice about its removal, or you could view it as another diamond-drop earring option and seek out the nearest television camera.
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Welcome to Embarrassing Bodies Down Under (LifeStyle You, 9.30pm), in which Australians with ailments best covered under doctor-patient confidentiality agreements drop their kit and scream ”look at me”.

This is the Antipodean version of the British original, which had no Down Under in the title but much down under action. Every second patient’s embarrassing secret resided in the vicinity of their underpants.

The Aussie version is no different. While there is medical science involved here, it is definitely part freak show. Who’s for some holiday snaps of unusual bowel motions?

David Walliams’ Mr Church from Big School (Channel Nine, 8.30pm) is in a position to contribute in that regard after an altercation with some bad seafood.

Financial constraints have led to Miss Postern’s school trip to France being downscaled from a visit to Paris to a ferry jaunt to the dreary port town of Dieppe. Naturally, the tracky dacks-clad sports teacher Trevor is on board – not so much to help with the children but to sell them alcohol and ”shag Postern”.

Mr Church has far more honourable, though still romantic, intentions, as anarchy threatens.

Comedy and travel sit beautifully side by side in Michael Palin: From Python to Brazil (ABC1, 10pm). The absurdist skill of Monty Python was a big influence on Walliams and Matt Lucas in the creation of Little Britain. In fact, Python has had its way with much great British comedy.

Here, Palin takes us through his career transformation, from comic actor to much-loved and respected television travel guide.

Any chance to sit and listen to Adam Goodes talk for half an hour should be grabbed. His conversation with Karla Grant in Living Black (NITV, 8pm) is all you would expect from the AFL great: erudite, considered, confident and illuminating.

From family values to becoming an ”elder” within the Sydney Swans set-up, ensuring that players commit to its culture (welcome Buddy Franklin) to the ugliness of the racial vilification moments from this season, Goodes is open to it all.

When asked, there’s even the tiniest hint that politics might be a post-footy career option. After all, for someone who likes to be involved in the process of change, politics is considered the place to be. Were it to happen, let’s hope Goodes could change politics rather than it changing him.

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