Friday, August 30, 2013

Round 25 – Underbelly: Green Machine

“It’s a jungle out there, David,” Raiders CEO Don Furner said, as he placed a hessian bag over his brother’s head and secured it around the neck with rope.  The man could not struggle against the bag, as his hand and wrists were also tied tightly.  “Don’t try to stop those men in green,” he added, patted his brother on the shoulder, and pushed the supermarket trolley that the once-coach of the Canberra Raiders was sitting in down the hill, and towards Lake Burley Griffin.  The trolley hit a large swan and flipped, spectacularly catapulting David Furner into the murky depths. 

“Hey Sandor, do you have a piece of gum, bra?”  Blake Ferguson asked his team mate.
“Sure bra,” the man they called ‘Dor’ replied.  “I’ve got some right here.”  Dor opened his sports bag and pulled out a syringe.  He passed it to Blake. 
“That’s the bidness right there,” Ferguson said, almost salivating.  He says ‘bidness’ because he doesn’t actually understand that the word is ‘business’.  He held the syringe to his neck and injected the contents into a thick vein, like they do in futuristic movies about drugs.  “Minty fresh, bra.”
Just at that moment, Terry Campese said from behind them, “Hey did you guys have some chewing gum?  I have a big date with a highly respectable girl who loves me for who I am and not because I am a big time sports star tonight, and I want my breath to be fresh.”
“Sorry bra, that was the last piece,” Sandor replied.  He shared a knowing look with Ferguson. 
“Yeah bra.”  Ferguson added, with the concentration of a person who is about a sentence behind everyone else.  “That was the last piece.”  Both Sandor and Ferguson broke down with laughter at their private joke.
Terry Campese’s brow furrowed – something was definitely strange here, and it might have had something to do with the syringe hanging out of Ferguson’s neck.

Ferguson’s phone beeped next to him – it was a message from Dor.

Fuk m8 there onto us bra. 

He started to sweat.  He was on his fortieth chance with the Raiders, and the management had always said that the 41st infraction was definitely going to be the last.  He quickly Googled ‘infraction’ again, just to ensure that the definition hadn’t changed since last week (it hadn’t), then hurriedly went around his apartment, closing the curtains and turning off the lights.  If what Sandor had said was true, the Raiders would definitely be looking for him. 

His phone rang again, and Ferguson’s mouth went dry.  Ironically, he really wanted a piece of gum.  The phone call was from the Raiders.  Ferguson sat in the dark, ignoring the constant ringing.  Luckily his ring tone was Robin Thicke’s hit song “Blurred Lines”, so he didn’t really mind, and by the third time around, he had forgotten why he was ignoring calls to start with.


Round 25

I’m opting for Brissy to beat the Knights, just because I don’t think I’ve actually watched a Newcastle game this year, and don’t believe that they actually exist.  I am picking a Doggies win over the Panthers, but am really not confident, and reckon an upset is on the cards.  I don’t trust the Cowboys to continue their streak, and it took a LOT for me to pick the Sharkies there.  They’d better not let me down.  I honestly want to watch the Eels vs the Dragons on Monday night – I might even buy Foxtel just for the occasion.  I can’t believe how shit that game is going to be. 

Brisbane Broncos vs Newcastle Knights     
Canterbury Bulldogs vs Penrith Panthers   
Cronulla Sharks vs Nth Queensland Cowboys       
Wests Tigers vs South Sydney Rabbitohs   
Sydney Roosters vs Gold Coast Titans        
Manly Sea Eagles vs Melbourne Storm       
Parramatta Eels vs St George Illawarra Dragons   

Game of the Round

New Zealand Warriors vs Canberra Raiders

It has been a fucking interesting year/week for the Raiders, as two more high-profile players have been given the arse.  As per the brilliant outline for the next Underbelly series above (and seriously, it’s better than Squizzy; not that I [or anyone] has watched any of that shit), Sandor Earl has proven positive to taking some kind of gamma radiation pill in the hope that it would turn him into the Hulk, and has apparently been throwing it around to anyone who wants it.  I would, but I’m saving myself for a radioactive spider bite.  Blake Ferguson has decided not to attend training or answer his phone, and should probably start looking for another club as soon as he can find the light switch in his house.  But in all seriousness, the NRL should deregister him so he doesn’t keep thinking that it’s acceptable to piss in the face of (anyone) the club that gives him chances to play football and not get arrested for being a massive dickhead.  Because he’ll do it again next year to whichever stupid bastard reckons they’ve helped him to “turn a corner” or “earn his halo” or “bury his murdered hookers.”  Fuck Ferguson.  Fuck you, you fucking fuck. 

With Carney, Dugan, Earl and now Ferguson off the cards in recent memory, it takes the number of tattoos within the club from 18,002,352 to about six.  So that’s not bad.

Warriors to win.  

Sandor Earl's guilty tweet.  I would have used a Grumpy Cat meme myself:


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Cold? What is this cold of which you speak?

Canberra is a diverse and interesting city, as demonstrated by its diverse and interesting population.  Whether you’re a public servant in Tuggeranong, working for the Department of Human Services, or a public servant in Belconnen, working for the Department of Immigration or a public servant somewhere in between, there are unique and interesting individuals with unique and interesting backgrounds.  Just listening to these fascinating people can uncover unique and interesting questions including “what other departments have you worked for?” and “do you know Jack Smith?  He used to work there.” 

There is, however, one type of person that stands out from the usual Canberran, and it has nothing to do with their Government security pass.  It doesn’t even stead from their residential suburb, the car they drive, the school they went to or which code of football they support.  It’s not whether they’re a Hungry Jacks kind of person, or a McDonalds devotee.  It’s not even a part of the epic Northside vs Southside debate that began at the same time as they filled that fucking lake.

Canberra is, by and large, a cold capital, and this is most prevalent during the winter season (from April until late October), where the mercury doesn’t even bother getting out of bed, and just hovers around the 5 degree mark all day.  Meteorologists don’t even give Canberra’s weather a mention during their Australia-wide wrap-up, usually giving it a “Queensland had a bit of fog in the morning, but cleared to a bright and sunny 24 degrees, perfect for those who decided to fuck work off and go to the beach.  Sydney had a similar start but didn’t quite get that sunshine, peaking at 22, but there’s a change coming through that will warm things up during the week.  Canberra - fucking cold.  Again.  Melbourne had a wet day, interspersed with periods of soaring temperatures and gusty coastal winds, followed by a tropical storm and then a lovely humid 32 degrees; perfect for those who are preparing for the Armageddon…”    From this, we can gather that during the chillier months of the year, Canberran citizens bunker down in warm clothes; with long pants, at least one jumper and a big ol’ jacket to keep the sleet from killing them.  A beanie covers the head, hands are replaced by gloves and a scarf becomes something that “hipsters wear during the summer because they’re dickheads” to “the only thing keeping me alive.”

And then there’s the people who just don’t get it.  Regardless of the winds coming directly from the snowy mountains at 100km per hour, or the hail, rain and fog, the unusual Canberran is out there in a t-shirt and shorts, wondering what all this fuss is about.  The unusual Canberran looks down on people who wear thongs during winter.  The unusual Canberran who “doesn’t mind if you pop the heater on” but is also quite happy to “crack the window and get some cool air circulating through.” 

These are not the same people that wait outside Mooseheads in tiny skirts and a midriff top, or even the girls that do the same.  The unusual Canberrans are not to be mistaken for the Moosehead Fuckwits, as they hold down good jobs, are educated and eloquent, watch movies and read books, play sport and drink beer.  They don’t ignore the weather because they want a like-minded fuckwit to hook up with, or wear what they do so they feel they’re allowed to punch you in the throat because you looked at them, the unusual Canberran ignores the weather because they just don’t get it.  They are often seen at bus interchanges, movie theatres, football stadiums and cafes – that’s right – the same places that you go.  I once saw one looking through a rack of jackets at a David Jones sale, but I could tell that their heart wasn’t in it.  I said to him, “Mate, don’t do this.  You know you don’t want it.  Embrace your unusuality.  Rock that t-shirt and shorts combo for another month.”  He hugged me, thanked me and left the rack, which was handy because he was going to buy the same jacket that I was. 

Unusual Canberrans of Canberra, I salute you.  Well, I would if I dared take my hands out of my pockets.  But I won’t.  Because it’s cold.

I've changed my mind.  You're all fucking weirdoes.

Friday, August 23, 2013

NRL 2013 Round 24: I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that...

A cracker of a Canberra Appreciation Month week this week, as David Furner was given the arse by the Canberra Raiders as head coach of the Greenus Machinas.  With a Ninja-Turtle handful of games to play for the rest of the year, one must ponder the reasoning behind sacking a coach so late in the season.  My guess would be to lure new players to the nation’s capital in the off-season, with the main attraction being “David Furner is not here.”

Personally, I liked Dave Furner.  Unfortunately it appears that Blake Ferguson and I were the only ones.  Speaking of Fergo, the sacking of Mr Furner means that he has a ‘Get out of Jail Free’ card (not literally), as his contract stipulates that he can seek an escape clause from the Raiders if Dave Furnsie is not the head coach.  I guess he can fuck off back to Cronulla then, although I have been rubbing my crystal ball lately (not literally) and reckon he’ll line up at the Roosters next year. 

The Raiders also managed to lose young up-and-comer Anthony Milford, although there’s still a whole lot of “get fucked” “no, youse get fucked” going on about giving him a release from his contract to go and live with his old man in Queensland.  So he wants to play for the Broncos, who are understandably excited about that, because it could mean that they could finally get rid of Peter Wallace. 

What does it all mean?  Basically that the Raiders lost Furner, Ferguson and Milford in one week, but on the other hand, might have made room for Peter Wallace.  HAAHAHAHA.  Kill me now.

Round 24

Panthers vs Broncos
Rabbitohs vs Bulldogs
Dragons vs Tigers
Titans vs Warriors
Cowboys vs Knights
Storm vs Eels
Sharks vs Roosters

Fairly cut and dry round for 24, with a couple of noodle scratchers in the Panthers-Broncos game, because you never know just how shit either of them will be; the Titans and the Warriors will be playing to remain in finals contention (although realistically, neither team would get past the first round of finals, so are probably both already looking forward to their end-of-season trip to Bali); and the Cowboys vs Newcastle game, which has about the same repercussions. 

Actually, turns out there’s a few games that could go either way.

My money is still on a Souths vs Melbourne grand final – the Chooks can go get fucked, and Manly are homos.  I just wish that the Burgess brothers would stop being dickheads by throwing street signs through cars, taking photos of their dick on Instagram and blatantly grabbing other people’s nuts during games.  I want to like them, but they’re making it a bit hard (not in that way, you sickos).

Game of the Round

Raiders vs Sea Eagles

Canberra should romp this one in – history shows that the team who sacks their coach after being flogged by everyone comes back the next week in a “who wants a flogging” mood themselves.  Except that statistically, that team is more likely to win the following week.  ANYWAY.  We shall see if the whole “Dave Furner’s coaching was losing us games” argument rings true this weekend, as the Green Machine come sputtering up against Manly, who are sitting pretty-ish on the ladder somewhere in or around the top four. 

Personally, I don’t think getting rid of the head-banded one is going to help things at all, and I’m tipping a Manly victory this weekend.  Of course, that won’t stop Geoff Toovey crying like a little bitch about how the referees don’t like him and won’t invite him to their birthday party, which is, personally, my favourite part of a Manly game.  Well, that and seeing Steve Matai get sent off.

Manly by… thirteen.  I love field goals.

Dave Furner looks fitter now that he did when he was playing.  And he was really quite good when he was playing.  Maybe he should pull the headband on again for 2014.

Friday, August 16, 2013

NRL 2013 Round 23: Schifcofske's Pretty Shitty Little City

Canberra Appreciation Month has coincided with a tumultuous time in the Raiders’ 2013 season, as they play the top teams right after each other.  Melbourne, Roosters, Canterbury, Manly.  We Canberrans love a challenge.  Traditionally, the Raiders play like absolute fucking shite during Canberra Appreciation Month, which is an age-old custom that is used to help maintain loyal support for the Green Machine despite them losing a lot.  Personally, I feel that its effect is beginning to wane and they should probably consider, you know, winning.

I had a dream the other night about Clinton Schifcofske, a former Raiders captain.  I think it was because I was trying to work him into the opening MEBCAM poem about Canberra, and was worried that Schifcofske didn’t quite fit the rhyme scheme.  In fact, I’m still thinking about it and have decided that it did work.  In any case, in my dream, he came back to play in the NRL and was immediately made captain/coach of the Raiders, and for some reason the other team didn’t want to tackle him and he scored a shit tin of tries and went really well but retired the next game and moved in next door to me, but we didn’t talk to each other and I guess he moved out quietly fairly shortly afterwards.

Round 23:

What a shit week of tipping last week – sending me from a pretty 30,000th in Australia to 87,000.  It’s a funny world, this footy tipping malarkey.

OH THANK FUCK the Eels have another Friday Night game.  I would hate for someone good to be in the spotlight for eighty minutes a week. 

Broncs to continue their winning form, Bunnies to bounce back (it helps that their two best players are arriving just in time), Cowbs to keep everyone guessing, Sharks to get back on the horse, Warriors to spank the Panthers, Storm to fuck up the Knights and the Chooks to get over the Tigers, but probably not by as much as everyone reckons.


Broncos vs Eels
Rabbitohs vs Sea Eagles
Cowboys vs Titans
Dragons vs Sharks
Warriors vs Panthers
Knights vs Storm
Tigers vs Roosters    

Game of the Round:

Raiders vs Bulldogs

Canberra will have a chance to show their home crowd that they can definitely lose by less than the last time they played at Bruce Stadium this week as they take on the Doggies.  Canterbury haven’t been travelling terribly well (maybe), and are probably lucky to be as high as they are on the ladder.  That said, Canberra are lucky to still be allowed in the comp sometimes. 

I am tipping a Raiders victory this weekend (seriously), and they will do it in a way that will annoy the fuck out of their fans by showing just how well they can play, a few weeks after giving a fine demonstration on just how shit they can be as well.  

The stuff that dreams are made of

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Canberra Celebrities - my brush with fame

Canberra is home to its fair share of celebrities – people like the guy from the Magnet Mart commercials and a couple of chicks who auditioned for The Voice (but didn’t get onto the show).  We also have politicians, who are always friendly and NEVER drunk, as well as a plethora of sports stars, both current and past. 

Most Canberrans will tell you about the time that they “saw George Gregan, you know, back when he was, you know, playing for the Wallabies, you know, at the Hyperdome” or when they were working at Maccas and “in walks fucking Big Mal who orders like three Big Mac meals.  Fuck man, he’s big!” 

I have had the pleasure of standing behind former Canberra Raider Brad Drew at an ATM (don't worry if you don't remember him), as well as sharing the Mooseheads dance floor with former Canberra Raider Luke Davico.  I have also bumped into former Canberra Raider Jason Croker whilst crossing the street (he almost got hit by a car), and spoken to former Canberra Raider Paul Osborne several times at Woolworths.  

HOWEVER, my favourite personal story about a Canberra sporting celebrity involves no former Canberra Raiders players.  It centres around Lauren Jackson, WNBA and WNBL superstar.  At the time, I was working a job which basically involved me going to buy alcohol for everyone who worked with me on a Friday night (I may have had other duties during the week, but I pretty much ignored them).  During one Friday afternoon adventure to the shop, my mission was to purchase two cases of beer and a bottle of wine for the thirsty punters.  I hefted the slabs into my bony-girl arms, awkwardly balanced a bottle of Chardonnay under my chin and joined the line at the check out. 

It wasn’t long into my vigil that I realised that I may have over-estimated my upper-body strength in my attempt to hold up 48 bottles of beer in my hands (and a bottle of plonk shoved into my throat) for an extended period of time.  In order to take my mind of the crushing weight of our Friday night drinks, I decided to concentrate on the things around me...  such as the behemoth of a woman standing in front of me.  I recognised her immediately - Canberra doesn't have a lot of giant blonde women who wear "Canberra Capitals" basketball shirts with "Jackson" written across the back.  Standing a good five or so inches above me (to be honest, I have no idea how much an inch is, but five inches sounds like a pretty good measurement to stand over someone who is by no means a short person edit: after some Googling, yes, she is five inches taller than me.  Take that, metric system!), she appeared to be struggling with a few bottles of Coke and some orange juice.  “Pffft,” thought I, as sweat from a new gland opened up under my chin, making that fucking bottle of white wine just that little bit harder to grip with my face, “Lozza Jackson, one of the best female athletes (in Canberra) can’t even hang onto a few bottles.  I hope she turns around and notices my awesome feat of strength, then gives me a million dollars because I am awesome.” 

Lauren Jackson did turn around.  Indeed she was struggling with her drinks.  In one hand, she had eight litres of mixers (four Cokes and the OJ), and in the other, she neatly held two cases of beer and a bottle of vodka (this happened just after the Capitals won the premiership, or whatever they call it in women's basketball.  I am not saying that Lauren Jackson is a raging alcoholic). When she paid the cashier, she put down the mixers so she could hand over her money.  She didn’t even think about putting down the two slabs in her other hand.

It was at this point that I decided to nickname her “Two Slab Lauren,” and I would make banners for her basketball games.  I would be her biggest fan (and she would give me a million dollars because I am awesome).  In the end, none of that happened, because I don’t particularly like basketball, women’s basketball even less, and I never saw her again.  But in those few moments that we lined up together at the Lyneham IGA, I’m pretty sure we could both agree that it was a great moment in Canberra’s history.        

  "Two Slab" Lauren, as she likes to be known

Friday, August 09, 2013

NRL 2013 Round 22: Football Canberra Style

The unofficial celebration of Canberra Appreciation Month (start of August) saw a brilliant weekend involving the ACT’s most successful and well-known sporting heroes, the Brumbies and the Raiders.  In honour of the greatest month ever (Canberra Appreciation Month), both teams stood proud and gave fantastic efforts in their respectful football codes.

The Brumbies got off to a surprisingly good start, and kicked it out on the full a lot, and clapped themselves wholeheartedly.  Unfortunately they couldn’t sustain the “speed” of the “game” and it was around the 64-minute mark that the Waikato Chiefs gained the upper hand and kicked and clapped harder than the Brumbies for the full 80 minutes to take out the game, and with it, the Super 15 Rugby title.

On the other side of the weekend, the Raiders took on defending premiers the Melbourne Storm, and rallied hard against their much-fancied opponents.  However, like the Brumbies, it was the number 64 that came back to haunt the might Green Machine, and they found that giving up a 64-point advantage was just too much to overcome, narrowly going down 68-4.

Round 22:

I’m throwing a couple of dark horses and gut feelings (and general “fuck, I don’t know!”) tips into the mix this week, starting with the Dragons to overcome a reborn Brisbane team.  No reason.  I also think the Storm will do it easily over an injury-depleted Rabbitohs outfit, the Cowboys will go back to being shit against the Panthers, and the Sharks to scrap it out in a close one to beat the Knights.

Luckily Channel 9 has their finger on the pulse of the season, and is giving league fans what they truly want on a Friday night, with the bottom-placed Eels hosting the second-last-placed Tigers.  I’m not doing any additional research here, but why is it that every fucking weekend these shitfull teams land themselves a televised game?  The Raiders have had one game this year (in which they were thrashed by the Bunnies), with most of the pre-game telecast concentrating on trying to self-fellate itself over the fact that Greg Inglis existed, and completely ignoring the Raiders.  The commentary team then proved how much interest they had invested into the game by calling Jarrod Croker “Jason” and Paul Vaughan “Paul Vautin.”  I'm not saying that it's time to get some new blood into the commentary team, but when we're confusing players in 2013 with players who last laced on a boot in 1991... yes, I am saying it's time to get some new blood into the commentary team.  And get rid of Fittler and Johns.  And Gould.  So basically, keep Ray Warren. 

Not that I’m angry at all.  I think I’m more bemused.  No, angry.  Fucking fucks at Channel 9.      

Broncos vs Dragons
Sharks vs Knights
Storm vs Rabbitohs
Sea Eagles vs Warriors
Panthers vs Cowboys
Eels vs Tigers
Bulldogs vs Titans


Roosters vs Raiders

This week, the Raiders can make amends for last week’s nail-biting loss by taking on competition favourites the Roosters.  There’s a saying in rugby league circles about “beware the team who was smashed last week because this week they’ll probably smash youse back” (or something).  However, if I was the Chooks, I wouldn’t be too worried – the Raiders have a habit of following up a drubbing with an even bigger drubbing.  But since it’s Canberra Appreciation Month, I can see the Raiders fronting up in defence more than they did last week (let’s be honest, it would be hard to do less defence than they did last week), and will control the ball a lot better. 

Still.  Roosters by about 40.

Maybe the Raiders should give up on making milk products and get on board with some Raiders beer?  The presentation of this can of piss is absolutely astounding.

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Mister Evil Breakfast presents: Canberra Appreciation Month 2013

Canberra, Canberra, our little capital city
Canberra, Canberra, I think you're so pretty
Canberra, Canberra, people think you’re shitty
Canberra – our pretty shitty little city.

Canberra, Canberra, has endless possibilities
Canberra, Canberra, with unlimited complexities
Canberra, Canberra, it’s just too cold for the extremities
Canberra – why are you such a fucking chilly pretty shitty little city?

Canberra, Canberra, we love every nationality
Canberra, Canberra, as long as you’re a majority
Canberra, Canberra, and don’t take our spot at university
Canberra – it’s tricky in a fucking chilly pretty shitty little city

Canberra, Canberra, it’s always such a pity
Canberra, Canberra, that we can’t swim in LBG
Canberra, Canberra, because of the algae and acidity
Canberra – too many fatalities in a tricky fucking chilly pretty shitty little city

Canberra, Canberra, let’s get to the nitty gritty
Canberra, Canberra, it was decided by committee
Canberra, Canberra, to have a set capacity
Canberra – no anonymity for fatalities in a tricky fucking chilly pretty shitty little city

Canberra, Canberra, promotes heaps of teenage chastity
Canberra, Canberra, it was just meant to be a quickie
Canberra, Canberra, fifteen year olds tested for paternity
Canberra – kiddies not anonymity & fatalities in a tricky fucking chilly pretty shitty little city

Canberra, Canberra, you’re seen with no personality
Canberra, Canberra, Sydneysiders sprouting profanity
Canberra, Canberra, about our Australian Capital Territoriality
Canberra – we have affinity and kiddies not anonymity & fatalities in a tricky fucking chilly pretty shitty little city

Canberra, Canberra, you never fail with predictability
Canberra, Canberra, a buck’s night ends with “Let’s all head to Sinnies!”
Canberra, Canberra, giggity giggity giggity
Canberra – we like titties and affinity but no kiddies or anonymity & fatalities in a tricky fucking chilly pretty shitty little city.

Canberra, Canberra, here's the end of this activity
Canberra, Canberra, that when I started sounded witty
Canberra, Canberra, but has lost its joviality
Canberra – the end of the ditty about titties & our affinity but no kiddies or anonymity & fatalities in a tricky fucking chilly pretty shitty little city

Thursday, August 01, 2013

2013 Ashes - Third Test: What the fuck, Australia?

The first Ashes test surprised the shit out of everyone in how close it was; somehow Australia came within a 14-run bee’s dick of snatching victory, after being decimated to 9 for fuck-all in the first innings.  Enter Ashton Agar, the great whitish hope of Australian cricket, to smack around a rapid 98-run debut batting performance.  The second innings saw normal programming resume as the top order struggled, the middle order struggled more and the tail end hung around longer than they had any reason to.

The second Test had everything the first one did, except for any display of Australian skill.  It was a close contest that England ended up winning, scraping over the line by about 350 runs. 

Following this loss, the Australian media rightfully got up the Aussie team, declaring them the ‘worst team ever’, ‘a pack of overpaid dickheads’ and ‘fucksticks who couldn’t bat their way out of Batman’s Batcave on Batman’s Birthday even if Batman was guiding them.’  Their batting is shitfull.

So what has changed in ten days?  Other than the calendar, not fucking much.  Team morale is at a high, proven by Michael “I didn’t compare Shane Watson to cancer” Clarke being in London and Shane “Yes you did, and yes I am” Watson faffing about in Leeds, instead of, you know, playing cricket or training together and becoming some kind of version of “mates.”

Look, Australia can fuck around all they want with the batting order.  They can bring in seventy-eight different bowling coaches and a thousand different physicists to work out the right way to bat.  They can nail Watson’s front foot to the ground so his initial instinct isn’t to take a big ol’ fucking step forward, plant his leg in front of middle stump and wait for the ball to hit it.  They can practice nothing but slips catching for a week straight, and they can work out the biomechanically correct way to slide while fielding, and it will all mean FUCK ALL AND NOTHING because they aren’t playing like a team.

When you play in a team, you are playing for the other blokes around you.  You don’t want to let them down.  The current team’s mentality is somewhere between “if I don’t score heaps of runs quickly, I will lose my Adidas sponsorship”, “if I don’t score heaps of runs quickly, I will lose my spot in the team to Steve Smith” and “fuck it, I can earn $1 million to play for the Punjabi Super Ninjas in the Indian Premier League a whole lot easier than this.”  What they really need to think is, "If I get out now, the team is fucked."  

If anyone reckons that Steve Waugh got on well with Shane Warne during Australia’s dominating period during the 90s and 2000s, they’d be wrong.  Steve Waugh hates everyone.  He probably doesn’t even particularly like his mum or his wife.  But both Mrs Waughs are good team players (or something... I don't know where I'm going with this).  Anyway... The Australian cricket team need to perform to the best of their ability for the good of the team.  Need quick runs?  Fuckin tonk away then.  Need to bat out a session?  Dig in and don’t play at anything that even thinks about missing off stump. 

England won the first two matches because they play better Test cricket.  Their bowlers kept their lines and lengths tight for longer periods of time, and their batsmen dug in and didn’t play at anything that even had a passing resemblance to a good ball.  Glorious to watch?  Probably not from a T20 cricket view, but in terms of real cricket, it was spectacular.  The English batsmen wore down the bowlers for over two days.  The best the Aussie batsmen could do was make the Pommie bowlers send down a few overs more than a One Day Match would provide.  If the English bowlers are sending down some accurate, tight bowling, then fucking block up and wait it out.  Jimmy Anderson is human; he will tire after about six straight overs -that's only 36 balls to contend with - so until then, keep your bat straight and stop trying to slog your way out of trouble.  That shit only happens in the backyard.

Similarly, when bowling, you could see that the Poms had a plan, some kind of idea that they were working on.  They pitched it up to Watson because they know he’s shit against anything a full ball.  They pulled it back against Hughes because he’s shit against anything short pitched bowling.  Swann ripped a couple of deliveries past Rogers’ outside edge, then lobbed in a straight ball that Christopher just stood by and watched crash into his off stump.  On the other side of the coin, Ashton Agar did what every Aussie spinner since Warnie has done; piff it in there and hope for the best.  And he got what most Aussie spinners since Warnie have got – sweet fuck all.  James Pattinson is overrated and erratic (and now injured HOORAY), and Siddle’s massive heart no doubt weighs him down during his bowling delivery stride.  

If there IS a plan that the Aussie bowlers are trying for, it's just not working.  Whether or not that plan is just plain wrong is entirely possible, but more likely is that the bowlers don't have the skill or patience to pull it off.  If that's the case, then one of two things needs to happen:  new plans, or new bowlers.  

While a lot of people are asking, “Where are all the Aussie leg-spinners that were supposed to have been inspired by Shane Warne during the 90s?” I am asking, “Where are all the boring-as-fuck fast bowlers who noticed that Glenn McGrath basically bowled the same ball (and had the same haircut) throughout his entire career – short of a length, aiming to hit the top of off stump.  Any movement in the air or off the pitch is going to get you wickets and keep the batsman guessing.  Instead we have fuckwits bowling a million miles an hour down leg side and then swearing at the batsman because they think it will threaten his manliness as his stock ball.  

I don’t see Australia coming close to winning this third Test, and England will deservedly go on to retain the Ashes.  David Warner will probably play following his score of 193 against a Zimbabwean 2nd XI team, in which five other players also scored centuries.  I don’t think Warner’s great form against teenagers bowling on a runway is going to put him in good stead to play against a true bowling unit with swing, seam and spin to contend with, (also, because Warner’s a fuckwit) but I am, as always, happy to be proven wrong.