top of page
Screenshot 2023-06-13 180949.png
  • Writer's pictureThe Beagle

Editorial June 10th 2022

Welcome to this week’s editorial, When we are small we are told wonderous stories of Tooth Fairies, Easter rabbits that poo chocolate eggs, and best of all large ho-ho types that drive sleighs and bring gifts every year. We are fed delightful tales that are backed up with parents doing their best to make it all seem real. They hid money under pillows, Easter egg hunts are well planned and stockings are filled in the dead of night by parents perpetuating the myth. Alas it turns out that none of these characters are real, that there is no standard rate for a fallen tooth, no possibility of an egg from a rabbit and that Santa is a total fiction. But do we learn and swear not to perpetuate the mistruths with the next generation? No. I remember being awoken after midnight on Christmas Eve to a crashing and thumping coming from the lounge room. On investigation it turned out to be my parents, well sodden, entwined in a pushbike frame and cables for my “Santa” bike. There had been much coercion (along with veiled threats) about Santa, my behaviour and the prospect of “him” bringing me a bike “if I was good”. I think it was that moment that I decided not to believe adults anymore. I had already worked out there was no tooth fairy because Kenny Scully used to get a shilling and I got nothing. If there was a fairy then it only worked the posh side of town. As for the Easter Bunny the fact was that Papua New Guinea had no rabbits and any chocolate it had was usually a disgusting white mottle from being frozen against the tropical heat that threatened it within minutes of coming out of the fridge. So now I could add to the fabrications with Santa. I turned, left them to their giggles, and went back to bed. When you boil it all down humans are pretty well deceived one way or another from the day they are born. In order to stop me venturing out at night as a young boy I was told that Sanguma lurked in the shadows ready to rip my head off and devour me. I suppose the equivalent is The Bogeyman in the west, but across the planet there seems to be the universal deliver of untruths. As we grow older the untruths change in their messaging. At each crossroad we are delivered a range of urban myths. At school we are told that we must continue through to university if we expect to have a safe, secure and rewarding career. I clearly remember those who were choosing to leave early and take up a trade as being considered “failures”. My career advisor warned of my marks “you don’t want to be like them do you”. The divide was already apparent. In TPNG you went to Moresby High if your parents didn’t have a Government contract that paid for their children to go to boarding school. By the time year 12 came about nearly everyone was destined for university among those who could afford it. For those who couldn't the default was always there to take up a trade. I now wonder if those who responsible for creating “the Clever Country” were as clever as they thought. A quality tradie is now a rare beast indeed. We abound in nebulous degrees and baristas but are thin on the ground for plumbers, builders, sparkies, nurses, aged carers, mechanics, chefs, emergency workers, teachers, doctors, dentists and farmers. Basically anyone who is trained to attending to the essential jobs that support the fabric of a nation. It is time we had a good look at the myths starting with not everyone lives happily ever after. Lets then look at the fact that the great Australian dream of half an acre behind a white picket fence is out of reach to most and that the prospect of having a gold-watch career isn’t on the cards anymore as we swap and change jobs like we change cars and addresses. Maybe, just maybe, if we support our upcoming generation by telling them a few key truths they might be better prepared for what awaits. And if a few more of them became essential workers, happy in their service and paid accordingly there might just be hope that the future Australia is justifiable called the “Clever Country” because we overcame the false perceptions, empty promises, inevitable disappointments and myth making that a “successful child” must be a brain surgeon or rocket scientist or have Masters degree. Maybe it is time to pull down the myths and begin to let some light in to the fancies we have that needlessly bind us to a perception of who we are rather than the reality of what we are. The future will need all the truth and the practicality we can muster. I vote we start with the Tooth Fairy and work our way up. Until next—lei

NOTE: Comments were TRIALED - in the end it failed as humans will be humans and it turned into a pile of merde; only contributed to by just a handful who did little to add to the conversation of the issue at hand. Anyone who would like to contribute an opinion are encouraged to send in a Letter to the Editor where it might be considered for publication

bottom of page