Our mission

Are you that special person who - weary from trudging the endless superhighways - just longs to camp next to a glorious oasis of the mind? Do you desire to explore new frontiers, splash in shared ideas, fill your belly with the refreshing fruits of inspiration, and bask in the gentle rays of fond reflection?

Well, you can fuck right off. This, my friends, is not that place. This place is... The ShadowLands.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Farewell Margo's Maid, hello Asian Correspondent


The ShadowLands is about to go semi-pro after being swallowed by an exciting new website called Asian Correspondent. The beta site is scheduled to go public on Monday, and in the meantime, there may be some changes at this site that may make you feel a bit woozy.

The ShadowLands, in its current format, has been a blast, but the possibility of being part of the start-up of something bigger made us decide to make the jump, not to mention the allure of cold, hard greenbacks. Hang on, what's that about American money? Oh bugger.

Since I will be attempting something a little closer to regular journalism, I have decided to lose the anony-blogging and stand behind my real name which - okay - I am ashamed to admit, was never really Margo's Maid. Also, about those feature columns from John Butler of the John Butler Trio and Cate Blanchett? Oh never mind.

I hope that readers will continue to join me in the new format - it should be a blast. Your patronage here has been more than appreciated, and old readers will be showered with extra fine karma.

Many thanks also to fellow Blairite asylum seekers, BOAB, kae and paco, not to mention some of the old ones like the mob at tizonas, all of whom I will continue to support.

Tuvan throat singing Friday


Thursday, October 15, 2009

Question They Won't Ask


Each week, The ShadowLands seeks to test how much the ABC believes in free speech by sending a question to their interactive Q and A television show. This week:
Tony

Alicia from Ovations again re the big pay day at Carbon Expo. Look, Jupiters wants to know if you are serious about your demand for the bowl of m and ms with the black ones removed. They say there are no black ones, only brown.

Also, they say they have checked every florist on the Gold Coast and cannot get the blue gardenia petals you wanted sprinkled over your bedspread. How do you want me to respond?

UPDATE: Huzzah - question rejected.

ShadowLands joins Blog Action Day



The ShadowLands is delighted to be taking part in climate change Blog Action Day, a day where we help to raise awareness about climate change, which apparently is some kind of issue or other about something.

Let's hope those enviro ass-hats will leave us alone after this.

A quick quiz: what are the above people doing?

a) These are the last remnants of the crowd at the Bathurst car races, performing a solemn ceremony of burning the last tyre.

b) Some kind of new age druids marking the change of seasons at Stonehenge.

c) Insensitive people releasing carbon into the environment because they don't care.

d) Envirotards doing whatever it is that envirotards do.

The answer of course is d) - participants at a climate camp at Helensburgh, south of Sydney last weekend releasing carbon into the atmosphere.

All of it kicked off after this event, attended by no media but saved for perpetuity for us on youtube. Can anyone figure out why they needed an abseiler?

At least this year's protest wasn't called off because of the cold.

But judging from the pics, temperatures were well below average, and our enviro-friends must be given credit for the late snowfall to hit southern Australia.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Changes


The ShadowLands is about to undergo a major change, and you can expect an announcement within about a week. To prepare for the change, and to practice speaking posh, we are taking a few days off...

In the meantime:

* Park this boat (use your arrow keys and follow the directions to safe harbour).

* How to win a peace prize and accept the award graciously.

* Run along the rooftops, and use the space bar to jump when you need to.

* Cool - it's the piano stairs.

* Still here? Try some lightning pool.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Sound advice

Bathurst, how it should be




From a time when competing cars looked different, there were no draconian alcohol restrictions, and the only ethanol being consumed was being drunk by spectators...and most of all, there was Peter Brock...

Is it just me, or was the Bathurst car race - which is on today - much more interesting in the 1970s?

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Rugby league's worst XIII announced


1. Brett Stewart, Manly Sea Eagles, 186 cm, 86 kilograms. Try scoring whiz and NRL pin-up boy, his team had trouble winning while he was out awaiting trial for sexual assault.

2. Darius Boyd, St George Dragons, 185 cm, 96 kg. Normally plays fullback, but pushed to the wing because of the outstanding array of fullbacks in this side. He made this side on the back of an alleged incident at a Brisbane nightclub, not his famous interview skills.

3. Greg Inglis (c), Melbourne Storm, 195 cm, 99 kg. Extremely talented centre and grand final hero, understood to have given his girlfriend an accidental black eye with his famous fend, considered to be the best in rugby league.

4. Justin Hodges, Brisbane Broncos, 190 cm, 97 kg. Feisty centre alleged to have been involved in a nightclub incident with team-mate...

5. Karmichael Hunt, Brisbane Broncos, 186 cm, 90 kg. Another talented fullback relegated to the wing. Moving to the AFL next year with the mistaken belief that it will give him a lower profile after his alleged involvement in a nightclub incident.

6. Todd Carney, 186 cm, 90 kg. Five eighth currently without a club after allegedly urinating on a man in a nightclub, but linking up with the Roosters in 2010. Should make a devastating combination with team reserve, Nate Myles, who defecated in a hotel corridor earlier this year.

7. Brett Seymour, 178 cm, 90 kg. Journeyman halfback on the way back after several nightclub incidents.

13. Greg Bird, Catalan Dragons, 183 cm, 102 kg. Mobile lock forward or five eighth, convicted of assaulting his girlfriend. Might have gotten away with claims it was an accident had he not tried to frame a friend. Currently not allowed to play in England, but playing home games for the French superleague team. Can be as devastating to opposition defences as he was to his girlfriend's cheek.

12. Anthony Watmough, Manly Sea Eagles, 181 cm, 95 kg. Considered one of the best rugby league forwards in the world, Watmough allegedly lashed out at a sponsor at the club's season launch - the same day that Brett Stewart allegedly assaulted a female. Tough forward who can carve up opposition defences and his sponsors.

11. Sam Thaiday, Brisbane Broncos, 181 cm, 108 kg. Hard working second rower allegedly involved in the same incident as Darius Boyd and Karmichael Hunt.

8. Anthony Cherrington, Sydney Roosters, 193 cm, 119 kg. Youngster on the way up sentenced to community service after allegedly approaching his girlfriend with a knife. Very mobile for a big man.

9. Jake Friend, 172 cm, 82 kg, Sydney Roosters. Enterprising rake, convicted drink driver, and alleged to have hit a girl at a nightclub. Need to be equally wary of him when he gets near the try-line.

10. Stan Waqa, 190 cm, 118 kg, Sydney Roosters. Promising forward alleged to have accidentally slashed his girlfriend with a knife when she got too close.

Substitutes: Dane Laurie, Arana Taumata, Ben Roberts, Nate Myles. Coach Brad Fittler, CEO Tony Zappia.

Comments: The NRL's worst XIII features no fewer than 8 internationals, as well as a range of promising up and comers. If they could stay away from the court appearances, the outside backs alone would probably beat any team in the competition. The bench also has plenty of impact - just ask the people some of them allegedly hit.

UPDATE: Nearly forgot other reserves, talented Souths halfback, Chris Sandow, forward, David Fa'alogo and owner, Russell Crowe.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Passing shadows


* If you wanted to keep your nation's lesbian kingdom a secret, what would you do? Deny its very existence, of course - just like those secretive Swedes.

* Now this is what we call a real prankster.

* Measured reactions from the Obama Grass Roots forum supporters to winning and losing.

* So, Barack Obama wins the Nobel Peace Prize and the inventor of the doughnut burger gets nothing?

* If you were transported 2000 years back in time, how useful would you be in explaining technological advancements? The truth is, we would not be very useful at all, however we did manage 7 out of 10 in the technology quiz.

Moon mofos finally get what's coming


If you have nothing better to do tonight, you could catch NASA bombing the moon here at 10.30 pm Australian Eastern Standard Time. If you absolutely insist on living somewhere else, you will probably need to catch it at some other time. On the other hand, you could just wait and catch it on the news highlights the next day.

NRL tackles partner proximity problem


REUTERS: Australia's National Rugby League is to commence a world-first education campaign for players' partners following yet another tragic accident.

This time, an unlucky woman has allegedly made the mistake of standing too close to Stanley Waqa who was flailing his arms around whilst holding a knife.

Unfortunately, she appears to have learned nothing from the partner of 112 kg West Tigers player Daine Laurie who was alleged to have been hit in the face by an accidental reflex action whilst he was in the act of protecting himself.

This accident occurs only a few short months since premiership winning star and former NRL Good Guy of the Month, Greg Inglis allegedly gave his girlfriend an accidental black eye whilst in the act of trying to protect her.

Unfortunately, this accident happened shortly after the CEO of the Cronulla Sharks accidentally punched a staff member in the face.

This accident, in turn, came after one of his players told police how his girlfriend had accidentally come into contact with a shard of broken glass.

Following a spate of accidents, eight NRL players have been charged with assaulting close-standing women in the past 12 months.

NRL CEO David Gallop has announced that in 2010, the NRL will hold a world first "Stand Back - Haven't You Ever Heard of Personal Space?" education camp for player partners. Then he knocked over a vase.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Question They Won't Ask


Each week, The ShadowLands tests out ABC television's interactive Q and A program with a question they won't ask. This week:
For Belinda

Are you at all concerned that Sophie Mirabella's baby may throw you over a balcony at some time in the near future?
(Thanks for the reminder, kae!)

UPDATE: Bah - published.

UPDATE: Hang on, all of the questions have mysteriously disappeared, and this does not usually happen. As one of the last questions submitted, ours was very prominently displayed.

Reverse Retard Index™ right again


Once again, The ShadowLands' Reverse Retard Index (RRI)™ has accurately forecast Australia's economic future.

In July, our economics correspondent John Butler, confidently asserted that Australia's economic recovery would be a piece of cake. Mr Butler simply looked at assertions by the Prime Minister that Australia's economy was in for a bumpy ride and applied the RRI™.

Now the latest unemployment figures are in and the RRI™ is right again.

In fact, all of Butler's predictions from October 2008, including his radical prediction that unemployment would not exceed 7 per cent, are holding up. Compare and contrast the success of the RRI™ with Goldman Sachs JBWere, Merrill Lynch and Access Economics.

Mr Butler says that RRI™ predictions for 2010 will become available before the end of the year, but for the time being, just wants people to stop hassling him.

Your guide to radioactive household products


The recent apocalyptic looking Sydney sandstorms caused a few cosseted urban types to wonder aloud if the dust blanketing the city was radioactive. The answer, we can reveal, is almost certainly, yes - because just about everything is radioactive.

On this theme, here's an interesting guide to some of the more radioactive things that you can buy and keep in your home.

Global warming round-up


* California wildfire stalled by record low temperatures.

* Early snow in Idaho.

* Cold snap stops Samoan workers sending money home.

* Surprise snap puts spring in step.

* Antarctic ice melt the lowest ever recorded.

* Open passage remains open.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Putin-mania


* The Prime Minister of Russia, Vlad Putin is 57 today. This is only five years short of the average life expectancy of Russian men.

* He has two daughters, at least one of whom is hot.

* A former KGB employee, he is a judo expert and has co-authored a book on the sport.

* His other favourite activities are shirt-optional.

* He is an awesome singer.

* It is both claimed and disputed that he once met President Reagan and many years later, attended a concert by an ABBA tribute band.

* Pissed off about the South Ossetia war, Georgia entered a brilliant song about him in this year's Eurovision Song Contest. But having made the finals, which were to be held in Moscow, the Georgians withdrew at the last minute.

* Sales of Putin merchandise are frankly, disappointing but if you insist...

* Because he's not American, Vladimir can pretty much get away with mysterious deaths and selling arms to totalitarian states without condemnation.

* This is what he looks like in make-up.

Passing shadows


* Looks like a weekend of harsh rationing for visitors to the Bathurst car races - only 24 cans of beer per person allowed each day. Where are the human rights activists when you need them?

* Internet people working stuff out (you'll need to sidestep the advertisement).

* Definitive proof, if it were needed, that 911ers are whackjobs - thanks minicapt.

* Creepy stories from motel workers.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Non-fasting youths from good families




Many thanks to minicapt for this link via celestial junk.

Life's good


As we always say, even a bad day baiting hippies is better than a good day at work. (See comments over here. NB, You will probably need to click on "Show more comments".)

Readers of the ShadowLands are more than welcome to join in, though you need to have a login.

UPDATE: Just when we were beginning to get somewhere, comments closed - bastards!

How to impoverish people without really noticing


Lefty economist, Professor John Quiggin has a long and distinguished career when it comes to being wrong. For years he spent column metres arguing that the policies of John Howard would fail to bring down unemployment, and that the Government pretty much needed to give everyone a job.

When unemployment did decrease very significantly he just stopped talking about it.

Quiggin is one of the men who inspired the ShadowLands' Reverse Retard Index™ - the famously reliable means of forecasting the future by listening to people who are usually wrong, and predicting the opposite.

But now Australia has elected dickheads to office, and John Quiggin finds himself as a man for the times.

Quiggin here, discusses his strenuous efforts to avoid air travel, although the efforts are never quite so strenuous as to prevent him flying somewhere, seemingly, just about every week.

For us, the most alarming part of his post came here:

I also had meetings on water allocation in the Murray Darling Basin.
A former economic adviser to the Greens, you can bet that whatever Quiggin has to say about the Murray Darling basin, growing food is not high on his list of priorities.

Which brings us to this:

The great water buyback that is saving our most majestic river system is killing hundreds of Outback towns.
But apart from farmers, the towns that service them, and Australians who don't want to pay too much or import food and clothes, are there any real victims when it comes to shutting down agricultural water allocations in the Murray Darling basin?

Well, as a matter of fact, yes there are.

Monday, October 5, 2009

The end of Malcolm


Boy on a Bike has done a sterling job to dramatise the end of Malcolm Turnbull. The results are posted on youtube here.

Passing shadows


* Full marks to the Thais for honesty in tertiary education.

* At last, your sandwich price calculator.

* A Maccas too far away.

* Back to a simpler, more sexist time in advertising... and movies.

* Got the tissues? It's the world's saddest story.

UPDATE: We were a little suspicious of the story, but there really is a La Porte Sunflower Fair, although the contest is not named after Wyatt Wilke, at least here. However, there is a memorial page for Wyatt and the dates check out - looks plausible.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Everybody hates Chicago


So Rio has won the 2016 Olympics. Whether or not it is remotely justified, The ShadowLands is always keen to be seen at the forefront of any internet trend or, at the very least, to sink a sly kick into the ribs of a victim who is clearly already unconscious. So here are our hatin' Chicago links:

* No we can't - all the sad people.

* Pixie on why Chicago fell short.

* Others say it lost because of the airport.

* Still not sure why to be hatin' Chicago? Then read all about egg-shell in the McMuffin and other horror stories.

Time to kiss and make-up


World leaders and their passion for make-up.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Passing shadows


* Reputedly, the only known footage of Anne Frank.

* Never mess with the farmer's daughter.

* Miss Red knows stuff.

* This is how predictions should work.

* First it was the Canadians, now it's the French who are talking sense. What's happening to the world?

* Surefire redneck pick-up lines.

Keep the change


Followers of the ShadowLands may recall that we linked earlier to a youtube video of the participants in eco-hysteria movie, The Age of Stupid being asked about how they got to the premiere.

The Director of the movie claims that production of the movie caused 94 tonnes of carbon emissions. Now to give you an idea of how badly the carbon market has collapsed, Watts Up With That reports that carbon offsets are now trading for 10 cents per metric tonne on the Chicage exchange.

This means that the cost to the producers to The Age of Stupid to offset their emissions is $9.40.

Most carbon offset companies claim that they need to plant six trees to offset one tonne of carbon emissions. All of which begs the question - who can afford to plant more than 500 trees for $9.40? Something doesn't quite add up.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Question They Won't Ask


Each week, The ShadowLands seeks to test the limits of the ABC's commitment to free speech by sending a question to their interactive television show, Q and A. This week:

Tone,

Ange from Ovations again. Just letting you know that Penny and Tim are both offering you a ride in their helicopters up to Carbon Expo. Might need to be a bit diplomatic about that one, but should be an awesome ride up to the Gold Coast whatever you choose.

Jupiters say they don't have the Peanut Butter Cookie Dough flavoured edible underwear, only chocolate or strawberry. You were joking about that, right?

Huzzah! Not published!

Issues with Germaine


In Malaysia, a woman has been sentenced to be caned for drinking beer, and meanwhile, the whole Polanski controversy continues.

Time to check in on what Germaine is thinking.

ShadowLands supports conference


Chavez and Qaddafi have signed a declaration urging a global conference be held to sketch out new terms defining terrorism.

This all makes perfect sense to us - Qaddafi, Chavez, Imadinnerjacket, Mugabe all in one room together.

One large explosion, many, many problems solved - and all part of the legitimate struggle of the people for liberty and self-determination.