Archive for the ‘Gerard Oosterman’ Category

Eve’s apple. Was it dodgy?

February 25, 2015


It is always good to know that in writing you just have to know the first word. The rest usually follows from then on. I decided my first word for the day to be ‘apple’. It is round in shape and when spoken out loud, sounds evenly balanced between vowels and consonants. Of course, the logical word to follow after ‘apple’ could well be ‘Granny Smith’ or even ‘Lady Pink’. I thought to try and associate ‘Eve” to the apple.

You sometimes wonder how a modern version of Adam and Eve would turn out. The eager acceptance by Adam of Eve’s apple was the beginning of the end really. I mean, the apple was just a decoy for a many folded love secret kept well hidden by a cunning Eve. She knew it would be irresistible to Adam, transfixed as he was from then on her litheness while sliding from the tree in that garden of Eden. It worked its charm but with devastating results. It became complicated. I mean, who would have thought it would result in the painting of the Sistine Chapel’s ceiling by Michael Angelo?

Was Eve all that innocent and still virginal with that offer of an apple, or was that apple loaded with venom, spite and revenge? A trick to get more little Adams and Eves roaming that lush park of flowing creeks, some sparse shrubs and sharp thistles. To lure him within her, sate him, empty to oblivion and so much nothingness?

On the other hand, did Adam not see the serpent with glistening eyes also slithering from that same tree. He could have given the apple to the snake instead of grabbing it himself. He had a choice!

It is all now so complicated and so much water under the bridge. I have also yielded to temptation and gone over to white bread. The birdseed wholemeal version has lost out. Forgive me daddy, I am nothing but a failure! I also broke a promise to take on smoking again at sixty five having given it up some decades earlier. It was the only thing that I could think of as a reward for giving it up. I failed a few times but none so badly as not having kept my promise to take it up again when I turned sixty five.

It is too late now. No going back or suffering regrets. Je ne regrette rien.

Going back to lithesome Eve. I would have cut the apple and offered her half. Furthermore,I would look Eve in the eye and, after a few communal bites, while sauntering around the garden, offering a few words of my own ask her then kindly,… your place or mine…?

Love sex and looking ‘gummy’.

February 23, 2015
etching  'couple'

etching ‘couple’

The visit to a dentist is not high on the list of items of interest to the average tourist. One could not imagine anything worse that walking over the Rialto bridge in Venice and being racked by pain of an infected molar rearing its head. Of course, at the age some of us might be, still owning a molar, infected or not, is something to still be proud of. I still have several with some teeth to boast about as well.

It reminds me of an advertisement of a lonely widower in a Senior Community newspaper on the Mid North Coast town of Port Macquarie. I usually go straight to the back pages, where often the best of ads are hiding. The sort of ads that advertise people seeking love interspersed with ads for massages with ‘happy endings’ and ‘Rosie is waiting for you’, special rates for seniors! Even seniors are now targeted, an enormous market and growing. All this and more cranked up by the merchants of Venice with Viagra.

I just love going through those advertisement of what people still like to experience in the area of love and relationship. Here was an ad that I thought really showed the nous of an unstoppable senior not giving up to aging or possible flagging tumescence. “A 74 years old Male desires meeting a nice lady, NS, ND, NG ( non smoking, non drinking, non gambling) with a view to friendship.” He described himself a retired actuary with own home ( no doubt well insured) and own pension. He plays lawn bowls, collects tin toys and is also a NS, ND,NG man, with Christian values and with OWN TEETH. He also likes Sunday drives!

Now, that ‘own teeth’ really floored me. There are so many people walking around with plastic knees, bionic arms, cobalt jaws and prosthesis that can turn, twist and even ‘feel’, so, why worry about own or not own teeth? People go to Thailand and get whole sets of teeth implanted for the cost of a lawnmower at home. There are now over a million walking around in Britain that have 3 dimensional printed ears. That’s right, you can get an ear replacement made on a printer. But sticking to own teeth. Do you ask your newly met friend,’these are still my own, please tap them?’ It could be that he wanted a partner with own teeth, or, that he was a bit lacking in confidence, and thought he would put upfront a feature that might put him in a good and somewhat more desirable stead. Love works and twists in strange ways. Cupid fires it arrows to unseen and unknown hearts, even implanted ones that are regulated by batteries.

I wished him well and perhaps he did meet up with a lovely woman just as proud of her teeth. I suppose, the subject might well have broken the ice. It is of vital importance that those first few impressions are favourable. Did he smile as he walked towards the café agreed upon at Port Macquarie? When things do match, teeth eventually meet up, but of course, so do gummy mouths.

Does it really matter?

A nostalgic look back at my Colonoscopy.

February 21, 2015
English spinach

English spinach

When I wrote the vasectomy piece a few day ago I did not know that I would be in for spamming e-mails trying to flog pills promising to ‘enlarge your man meat’ and ‘make her scream for more of you.’ followed this morning with the cheery, “Satisfy even the most insatiable nymphomaniac with your relentless sexual power!” At my age I just enjoy a warm milk and spoonful of honey stirred in. The last thing I would want is a screaming nymphomaniac lunging for my manhood. She might have trouble finding it now!

It brought back memories of my colonoscopies some years back. I don’t know why. Perhaps the images of ‘man-meats’ and most male porn, dedicated to images of turkey wattles and inner bicycle tyres has that effect on me. It turns the mind to the opposite of erotica, perhaps as a calmative, antidote or kind of army administered bromide in tea, to keep hands above the blankets. Hence a look now back on my colonoscopy. It is a grey day and raining relentlessly.

The colonoscopy was performed by a good and fully qualified endoscopist/doctor. I don’t know what drives anyone to become an investigator of colons. The same might well be asked of those that put down words in a certain order. At least the inspector of colons gets paid handsomely. He might come home to a lovely wife (or husband), gets served up a nice lamb chop with English spinach. He can relax and regale to spouse about his terrific colonoscopies performed during the day. He might be tired but has done his job well. He knows that.

The writer of words has to stumble in the dark. It is not clear cut as a polyp post polypectomy. He has a feeling, but feelings are often strange bedfellows. How words feel, can change. They are not set in concrete. Definitions of words are there, but as soon as you put another word next to it, it changes. A rose at dawn is withered at dusk. He hopes for the best but as luck has it, he/she has one arrow, unfailing and unwavering. It is the enjoyment of it. So, in a way the colon investigator and word writer might both be as necessary. In fact both might be symbiotic.

It was during my second last colonoscopy. Nurse asked me to draw my knees up higher; ‘doctor needs good access,’ she murmured. I obliged, I knew the score and was on first names with the good doctor. I woke up during his attempt to remove yet another obstinate polyp. The pain was somewhat greater than the tranquiliser. As I woke I had a look on the screen and in my drugged and confused state thought I was having a look at turkey wattle inner tube bicycle porn. The horror, the horror! Fortunately it was my own bowel, the very end of it.

I woke up in bed and after an hour or so was rewarded by a kind nurse with a nice ham and cheese sandwich and lovely lime jelly as desert. I was so hungry!

I did write about his before and GOT PAID.

I might have the muesli for a change.

February 20, 2015


“I might have the muesli today for a change,” Helvi announced cheerfully. And with these words another day broke free from its nightly moorings. Lately we seem to forego breakfasts till well after lunch time, and lunch has moved into late afternoon with dinner a thin Finncracker and slice of (un)Tasty cheese around bed-time. With getting less younger the quantities of our food intake seem to decrease in direct proportion of an increase in medical appointments. Till a few weeks ago, a visit to the quack were as rare as Milo catching a possum in mid-flight from rooftop to bay tree. Now, the fridge magnet holds appointments till early April.

We have a battery operated blood pressure and heart beat measuring machine.We, ever so lovingly wrap the rubber band around each other arms and wait for the monitor to give its solemn readings, both systolic and diastolic. This is followed a short time later with the pulse results. We write those down and might repeat it a few hours later when the Caffeine has calmed us down a bit.

It seems full circle back to a bit of playing ‘hospitals’ so many years ago. I might have been about fourteen hoping to get my first sight and touch of a girl’s roseate budding softness. I remember it well. I had to live of that first touch for many years, after having migrated thousands of miles away to foreign soil.

I sometimes see us behaving like cooing pigeons, kind of rotating around each other, keeping watch out for something unexpected, nodding a bit, expecting a morsel. The muesli statement was one of those morsels. I laughed out loud. It doesn’t take much at our age.

I asked Helvi, “are you sure about the muesli?” “I had three slices of white bread with my sliced Strasburg sausage, all by myself.” “How’s that for a change?” “You have got terrible dietary habits, eating muck food.” “And you pontificate about people eating MacDonald’s!”

She doesn’t stop this loveliness and bantering.

The morning is now taking off!

Oh Salvia, oh dear salvia.

February 19, 2015

photoSalvia Nr 1

I once knew a girl called Salvia
but not for long.
Her flowers trailing in Autumnal winds.
We loved for short but not for long
but so gloriously well while it lasted.

A stew begotten by this fragrant mixture making friends of mint and bay leaf is what makes it all worthwhile. I do hope dear readers will stay a while. Salvia has gotten to me and it might just have to run its course.

photoSalvia Nr2

From Wiki again.
“Subjective effects of salvia use have been described as intense but short-lived, appearing in less than 1 minute and lasting less than 30 minutes. They include psychedelic-like changes in visual perception, mood and body sensations, emotional swings, feelings of detachment, and a highly modified perception of external reality and the self, leading to a decreased ability to interact with one’s surroundings. This last effect has prompted concern about the dangers of driving under the influence of salvinorin”.

Can you believe it? People smoking my dear salvia, snorting it? Countries are now considering banning it. How did the world come to that the simple mint is now under suspicion?

Our Garden

February 17, 2015
A view from the kitchen window

A view from the kitchen window

It should not surprise anyone that the view from our kitchen window could only be a disadvantage in cooking. I mean why not just perch yourself over the sink and stare out? We don’t know what those blue nodding flowers out there are but according to Helvi ‘whatever they are, I am sure it is a herb and edible’. They come up each year and flower for months on end. They are over two metres high and are competing hotly with the indoor tree on the stairs. Perhaps you dear reader could throw some light on it. If they are edible, why cook anything? There is enough there to feed an entire dinner table for six weeks.

But, that’s not all. There is more. Look at the dark background. A forest of edible goodies also. They are bay leaf trees as high as our house. I don’t know if one can cook up a storm just by baking bay leaves but I don’t think it would kill anyone. Bay leaves have been used to add aromatic flavours to food even as early as during Grecian times. When dried and sprinkled it can be handy in food larder or laundry to keep out insects and other vermin.

I was shocked to read in Wiki that when bay leaves are packed between tissue paper and put together with beetles, cockroaches and other insects in a glass jar, the insects soon become docile and become easy to mount. I had to read it twice, thinking they must be talking about large animals such as cows and bulls. I know from our farm experience with mating animals that docility is not a pre-requisite for mounting each other. Not on our farm anyway. Then I thought, surely no matter how perverse or decadent, no human being would be lusting after a docile beetle or dragon fly having been drugged deliberately by some fiendish pervert?

It then came to me that people have all sorts of hobbies and obsessions, and that the mounting of insects must mean tacking them on a piece of paper or cardboard sheets, all part of an admirable science in collecting the various insects and possibly cataloguing them for future reference. Doesn’t most of our medicine come from those people that study the world of animals and plants?

I really have to pull myself together and resist seeing evil where there is none. That’s why I love looking outside my kitchen window.

My top ten of Erotic imaginings. Or, a Vasectomy’s best friend)

February 16, 2015


What Dr Baraba Simcock doesn’t know about the male genitalia isn’t worth talking about. At the last count in 2005, she had done over 16000 vasectomies and still counting. That is a minimum of 32000 balls she has peered at and pondered about. An amazing feat. I hope she sleeps soundly. If anyone is deserving of a Dame/Knighthood, surely she is. She looked at mine in 1972 when it, the vasectomy not the testicles, was still a bit of a novelty. A commercial TV station, channel 9 interviewed me live afterwards on telly interspersed with advertisements for Cadbury Marsh bars. ‘How is your performance now afterwards,’ the smirking girl asked? According to Helvi, who watched the interview, I visibly shrunk and leaned back in my chair. ‘Oh, very nice’, thank you’, I answered ever so politely.

My mum, previously a devout believer in ‘letting the little ones come’ was surprisingly tolerant having watched the TV segment of her son’s interview. She even wished the procedure would have been available during her years of green meadows fertility and almost yearly pregnancies. I am not sure if dad would have volunteered. They were different times.

Dr Barbara wished me well after I walked out of the Family Planning Clinic, testes bandaged securely, gave me a packed of coloured (and flavoured) condoms and urged me to ‘do it as often as you like’ ‘clearing all systems of life sperm is important’, she added. Also ‘You need to give a sample in 6 weeks time to determine, how diligently you have been, and that you are ready for a lifetime of sex without worrying about unwanted pregnancies. I couldn’t wait. Surely, the advice ‘ as often as you like’ also needed an equally enthusiastic partner, unless of course, a helping hand was allowed in the clearing of the ‘vasa deferentia’. I was given the address of the pathologist that would determine my sample to see if everything was ready for a full steam conjugal trip around the world for ever and ever.

I don’t want to get too medical. I’ll keep it short and to the point. Those who have followed so far but who are likely to get upset about explicit sexual references have the chance to leave now or look askance and think of Brussels Sprouts, or depending on cultural backgrounds, of Spanish Chorizos.

After a hectic six weeks and looking pale, I wearily made my way to the City pathologist in the bus from Balmain. It was the 401. The girl at the counter smiled friendly and supportively, gave me a small glass jar and led me to a room. ‘You will have plenty of time, the next client won’t be here till another hour’. ‘Please, you can lock the room behind you, she added’. She smiled again but not too much so. Just supportive and so typical of her gender. No fuss..

The first thing that struck me of the room was the total lack of a romantic ambience. I thought it would be softly furnished with a warm pink glow. The wall was adorned with a horrible print of a greenish Egyptian Pharaoh woman that one sees in op-shops. Nothing but a few magazines and some shelving, on top of which was a packet of Kleenex tissues. What was I supposed to do? I sat down in the Parker chair feeling dejected and not at all keen, staring at my little glass jar. What had I got myself into and what will the girl at the desk think when I hand over my empty jar?

I perused the magazines. They were full of the most provocative and beckoning ladies. What I thought were ads for chicken wings turned out to be close ups of shaven genitals. On top of all that, was I going to be unfaithful in this hour of such desperation (and of which was no return) to chicken wings? I looked at my watch. Thirty five minutes had passed already and to make things worse, a couple of male voice were outside my door. Are they queuing up now? I panicked.

It was all still so flappery floppery.

But then, I relaxed and thought, surely you can do it. Something was awakening, a kind of ‘doing it for your country and the over- population scourge together with a lust to prove to the girl behind the counter, I was still a man. I took action by first moving away from the Pharaoh woman’s gaze on the wall. Resolute and determined I decided to re-call my most and best top ten in the hit parade of sexual imaginings. The ones that withstood the test of time, over and over again. I think it was number six with the heaving and sighing and languid look, that IT rose to the occasion. My little glass jar tilted at the ready, was now ever so willing and able. There were still 16 minutes left and I relaxed to the point of ‘might as well make the most of it’ heroically relishing the lovely tingling creeping up my spine and, while recklessly easing off a little, took my time and gave helping hand a bit of earned rest , only to resume my previous momentum, except a little faster and more urgent now.

I unlocked the door, and triumphantly handed over my discretely wrapped in Kleenex tissues compliant glass jar to the smiling girl.

I had still seven minutes left. I could hardly have asked for extra time and enjoy a post conjugal nap as well.

There was another ‘client’ waiting.

The importance of being a ‘Parliamentary Whip.’

February 15, 2015
Lovely tangle of green

Lovely tangle of green

One never stops learning. Years have gone by and yet I never stood still even once to contemplate the job of ‘whips’. Of course, I know what a whip is. It swishes and is used to round up cattle in cowboy movies It was very popular during the years we watched Bonanza. In agricultural shows here in Australia one can see whip cracking events and competition by lithesome cowboy girls in boots and tight shorts. In some countries a whip is used to inflict punishments.

We hardly got over the week loaded with the Government preventing spills and soft motions that were still fresh in our minds. The linoleum clad corridors of power still slippery with the aftermath when we got hit with a sacking of the Chief Whip. The Imodium that all parliamentarians were put on hardly had time to do its job. Abbott was hoping against all odd it would reduce the amount of stool.There were some signs the motions were getting more solid and some ministers were seen confidently striding along and even smiling. But out of the blue came Tony Abbott’s announcement the Chief Whip was sacked. Com-motion came back running.

Many were flabbergasted, why go through another bout of turmoil? My question is more about; what is a Whip? How can a person be a whip? There is not just one whip, no the government has many whips. I asked but only got vague answers. It is always like that, never a clear explanation. One answer was, that they organise the business of governing. Yes, understood by why are they whips? Ah well, that’s how it is. Infuriating! Surely one just does not conjure up a word. Could they just as likely be called cheeses, bicycles or book-ends? Why Whips and Chief Whip? The Chief Whip was sacked as not having been seen to inform the PM Abbott of some kind of Back Bench turmoil. He was sacked as revenge for all the motions the week before. A House of Charlatans.I can look up Chief Whips and no doubt it relates to some form of English Charles Dickens role of pomp and ceremony including yeomen and unemployed crofters.

My mum was always amused that some cheeses were called ‘tasty cheese’. Do people buy cheese that is not tasty, she would query? Is there a cheese called un-tasty? Today, after sixty years, there is still cheese named ‘tasty’. Could you imagine the French trying to sell cheese as ‘tasty’? I might as well go on, seeing I am in full flight; of mentioning the cricket much hallowed price of winning ‘the ashes’. I have asked, but never got a clear answer. Are the ashes an urn containing the remnants of a famous cricketer passed away many years ago? Are they ashes of stumps or old cricket bats? WTF are those ashes? Has anyone checked if the urn or vase, cup, actually holds ashes?

The same question years ago when Australia still had the Imperial coinage. A penny was denoted with a D. Two pennies were two d, not two p. I asked and asked but no one knew. That’s just how it is, was the usual answer. Yes, but Why? I got my answer from a dictionary. It is related to denary. Yes, but why not call it a denary then, instead of penny. Denary= calculated in tens. But,,, but…there were twelve pennies in a shilling not ten.Incredulous silence.

I gave up. No answer.

Of Pith and Pathos.

February 10, 2015
My mother and our Daughter in Holland around 2002

My mother and our Daughter in Holland around 2002

Heaven knows what lies ahead. As long as I can keep up putting a few words down and continue recognizing others I’ll be happy.I often see old people looking bewildered. Men more so than women. In shopping centres, one notices them being dragged along by still very fit looking wives.To realize they once were those proud bulls, pulling up at their pants, organizing their privates for the next battle. The procreators with ardent passions, ram rod unstoppable fornicators. And now…reduced to pith and pathos, limp and forlorn…so lost in decay and senility, being dragged along, shuffling through the dairy division of the shopping mall. What a vision of the future to behold!

I suppose there is justice after all. We die earlier too. Certainly in my own family’s case. Dad dies at 78, a happy smoker till the end having fornicated at least six times. Mum having done the same but wisely a non-smoker, lived till 96. Hale and hearty till the end. Now, there was a woman. She had an incurable habit of doing crosswords and keeping the household expenditure and income. She had a little red book in which all bookkeeping was recorded. Sugar 45c, bread 38c etc. At the end of the day she did balance the little red book. Not a cent would escape scrutiny. She kept that little red book next to the phone. If the amount did not balance she would go over the sums, study the shopping receipts, add it all up again, look inside her purse, recount the amount left over after outgoings, and would not go to bed till it all balanced or ‘klopte’ (Dutch).

We used to rile her, it was a family joke, my mum’s obsession with her book-keeping. Yet, it was vital for our survival. Those early years in Australia were financially touch and go. Dad could not care less as long as he could afford his tobacco. He used to put his pay packet under Mum’s dinner plate on a Thursday evening. She would give him his tobacco money. And that was that. Year in year out. Love has many ways of being expressed. Mum’s satisfaction of her little red book being in balance before retiring to bed. My dad in the knowledge that all was well , exhale his last nicotine laden breath before going to bed also, next to his wife and in a normal double bed. No queen or king size.

Every time I visited my mum in Holland after dad died it was a sign of her spirit and determination to keep going, that she still had her little red book next to her phone together with the crosswords.

Year in year out.

Don’t shout. I can hear you.

February 9, 2015
Milo on possum watch

Milo on possum watch

Today is when life will once again be beckoning. A positive lift in spirit has taken an unexpected hold. A boldness surging up. Just now I took the reckless ‘two steps at a time’ in climbing the stairs without the extra aid of grabbing the handrail nor pushing down on my knees to gain extra leverage. Not a bad effort for someone often steeped in self reflective autumnal downwards, downstairs mood. I will have to watch my heart. Take it easy, old man. Sprightly but not foolishly stupid.

The reason for this yellow-orange exuberance might have something to do with finally getting my new hearing aids. It could be nothing more mundane than that. It seems puzzling. No spiritual awakening or fresh insights, No, just hearing aids from the Australian Hearing Centre here in Bowral. The old hearing aids were not working and causing increasing isolation. As I have said before, I just guessed what people were saying by answering yes or no. I took a gamble which of course has a success rate of fifty percent. If the facial expression showed my stab to be wrong I would do some verbal gymnastics, hoping it would become more acceptable. At best, it would be a conversation twisting and turning, often with unusual results, at worst I was seen as someone ripe for the funny farm.

The effect of hearing loss cuts both ways, H became isolated as well. I mean, we are each others best, and often only friends. It is hard when conversation becomes so difficult that at times H wrote down the words. We are both lovers of conversation and used to chatter and hearing the sounds of each other’s voice. We don’t listen to radio nor watch much TV, preferring to talk instead. Nothing profound, earth shatteringly evocative or enlightening, just about jingle bells or the state of the Lobelias. In that you need reasonable hearing. Hence, going without for almost three months was a punishment my lovely H did not deserve.

The old ones were going to be repaired but somehow after waiting for a month was told they were beyond repair. It is a long boring story, but three months without hearing aids wasn’t fun. Things became pretty quiet and at times terse and sad.

Today, at 1pm sharp I will be fitted with new ones. They will come in their own little box and pamphlet on how to care for them. The box will have a little brush and other tools on how to fit batteries and keep dry with a pouch that will drain moisture when stored during the night. I am excited, can’t wait! I decided to accept for an extra $ 800.- a better version of hearing aids that have an option to keep out background noises. The idea is that in restaurants or places with lots of people talking, the chatter will be cut out and I’ll hear better those talking close by. The idea is though to try and be situated with a wall as background. I can just see myself entering a café with Helvi scanning the seating arrangements ideally suited for maximum use of my new hearing ‘devices’.

In any case, “don’t shout, I can hear you now.”


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