Lord of the Ring Roads
The Christmas letter continues.....
This is the fifth instalment of a Mills & Boonesque saga about an elf & a fairy who settled in the land of Normanby to live happily ever after......
When the Coordinator General announced that he would approve the Environmental Impact Assessment for the Lord Mayor’s Northern Link Road Tunnel, there was much talk and concern in Normanby.
While the Lord Mayor was not intrinsically evil, he was determined to pander to the interests of On Road Commuters (ORCs). At the same time, he was failing to address the compounding issues of Climate Change and Peak Oil. His day time dream was to complete a ring of tunnels, bridges and roads around the city of Brisbane. It was his “tunnel vision”.
Tunnels are structures which allow some people to drive from point A to point B very fast whilst other people dash from point B to point A very fast.
An Elf, a Fairy, a Bug, a dog (Boutros Boutros Buttons) & three chooks (Julie, Judy & Julia) lived at point C. Point C being a point at the Eastern Portal of the proposed Tunnel. They were often given to wonder what's so great about point A that so many people from point B are so keen to get there and what's so great about point B that so many people from point A are so keen to get there. They often wished that people would just once and for all work out where the hell they wanted to be.
The Bug was a hybrid of the Elf and the Fairy. She spent her days eating; sleeping & singing tunelessly (just like her father). On the 13th of August the Fairy celebrated her birth. On the 14th of August, the Fairy, the Elf and a plethora of friends & family, celebrated the Bug’s first birthday. On Mondays and Fridays she attended a local Child Care centre where she was learning to paint and share crayons.
The Fairy spent her days managing the day to day affairs of the family and helping the storks deliver other people’s babies. The Fairy was a midwife.
The Elf has dreams of working in international development and/or addressing the compounding issues of Climate Change and/or Peak Oil. In reality, he earned a livelihood in Environmental Management at its very most fundamental. He also ran seminars, workshops and training courses on topics of interest like Coal Seam Gas Development and Ecological Sanitation. He was honoured and privileged to have the opportunity to talk about poo at the Engineers Without Borders National Conference in Melbourne. The Elf was on standby to go to Zimbabwe, PNG and/or Haiti to fight the good fight against easily preventable diseases like cholera.
Whilst the Elf was away in Melbourne, the Fairy hosted a mother’s group at Normanby. Unfortunately, Buttons took advantage of the situation and escaped. He was mercilessly (though unintentionally) run over by a passing ORC. His prognosis was good, but the recovery was slow. Buttons was not fond of wearing his Elizabethan collar.
As Christmas approached the Lord of the Ring Roads and his forces of darkness began Geotechnical investigations in the Normanby precinct in the middle of the night. The Elf awoke to the sounds on a sledge hammer clanging on steel plates. Seismic testing involves using a line of geophones on the ground to measure sound waves from hammering. The elf wished battling the forces of darkness and evil was a simple as tossing a ring of power into the fires of Mount Doom.....
To be continued.....
19 December, 2010
16 December, 2010
Brisbane City Council
Dear Lord Mayor,
It is 12:06 am (GMT+10) on Thursday 16 December 2010, as I write this email to you.
I arrived home from work at 10:00 pm.
For the last half an hour, a bloke with a sledge hammer has been banging steel on steel on the remains of Ithaca Street which is now part of the Inner City Bypass (ICB).
This demonstrates a number of things to me:
A) how inconsiderate the proponents of the Northern Link Tunnel are;
B) how ineffectual the existing noise barriers that separate my precinct from the ICB are:
C) a taste of things to come when construction of the Northern Link Tunnel begins in earnest.
D) how useless my political representatives at State and Local level have been as advocates for my community
I realise that I was advised in a very polite letter and an email about the commencement of Geotechnical testing.
I am reminded of the following extract from Douglas Adam's book: the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
"Bypasses are devices that allow some people to dash from point A to point B very fast while other people dash from point B to point A very fast. People living at point C, being a point directly in between, are often given to wonder what's so great about point A that so many people from point B are so keen to get there, and what's so great about point B that so many people from point A are so keen to get there. They often wish that people would just once and for all work out where the hell they wanted to be. Point D wasn't anywhere in particular, it was just any convenient point a very long way from points A, B and C"
When some one bangs steel on steel in the middle of the night in close proximity to my house, it makes it difficult for me to sleep and it makes me feel the amenity of my precinct (Point B) is less important to the Brisbane City Council than those who live at Points A, B or D.