2011 retrospective – 12 — November

A very family month and another Shire rediscovery month too.

2 November I began but soon abandoned another blog in an attempt to replace the public version of my Google Reader. 4 November was a most pleasant day.

Posted that wonderful open letter by Tom Keneally as well.

On 5 November I was thinking rather than writing….  I see Anonymous was going to shut down Facebook that day. Headed for Sydney on 6 November and also posted this: one of them is my grand-nephew David.

The book I told you about on 7 November really has proven a total treasure: On being in Surry Hills yesterday and finding Nick Jose’s anthology remaindered.

Began a series with Surry Hills revisited–people — 1.

All the angst about the carbon tax got to me in Sick of hysterics on 9 November.

11/11/11 deserved a special post and some nice photos of jacarandas. That day I also observed the Morphs in Crown Street Mall.

We seem to have had summer on 14 November: 93F at 8 pm. My main post was I watched Rageh Omaar on Abraham last night (SBS) ….

See also On being in Surry Hills yesterday and finding Nick Jose’s anthology remaindered  for last week’s episode.

I wasn’t disappointed, even if I was left wanting to know more. And let me preface by saying I admired the way he ended with those wonderful souls in Israel/Palestine who are genuinely for peace and reconciliation – for example:

Hand in Hand: Center for Jewish-Arab Education in Israel builds peace, coexistence and equality through a network of integrated, bilingual schools for Jewish and Arab children. Founded in 1997, Hand in Hand’s success and longevity demonstrate that children, families and entire communities of Jews and Arabs can live and work together with mutual respect and friendship.

On the other hand how tragic that this land and its living people are so cursed by origin myths that just refuse to die. How sad were the images of Hebron. In Omaar’s own words:

Following Abraham’s story takes you from one war zone to another; from Iraq to Israel and the Occupied West Bank, where there are more Abrahamic echoes in the current conflict. The best known and most shocking part of Abraham’s story is the attempted sacrifice of his son. In the Jewish and Christian Bible, it’s Isaac he tries to sacrifice. In the Koran, it’s Ishmael. Yet all three faiths share an admiration for Abraham’s willingness to go through with the sacrifice, only to be stopped at the last minute by divine intervention. Is not sacrifice one of the key elements in the Middle East conflict, the idea that future generations must be willing to sacrifice themselves for the land? There have been so many times in my career, when I have interviewed political leaders, militants, settlers and soldiers, where I have written down the word “sacrifice” alongside the words “future generations”.

Even Abraham’s reputed resting place is one of ugly, primal prejudice and violence. Hebron, in the West Bank, is one of the most uncomfortable places I have ever reported from. It oozes barely suppressed violence and raw hatred…

In The sad decline of key terms of abuse I praised the word “urger” as being still very relevant. I wondered then: Is the Christmas Bush early this year? Then we had the Royal visit…. Which is actually about Obama.

Shire Day on 18 November: Off to The Shire today, Back from The Shire, More on yesterday’s Shire excursion and Last fruits from Friday in The Shire:

The Classes of 68 and 69 may be found here.Flies_away


prefects1968aprefects1968bDr Colin Glendinning

Left: Paul Kelly, T Griffiths, Paul Weirick, R Priddy

Centre – Colin Glendinning 1968

Right – Colin Glendinning 2011

Sunday 20 November was the very impressive i98FM’s Camp Quality Convoy. This produced my most popular YouTube — 527 views so far.

In The conservative as fool I looked at the third episode of the History of the Bible series. There were more reviews in Serious, seriously good, seriously stupid and maybe not so serious after all…. “Seriously good is a book I have been working through for about a month: Bad Faith: A Forgotten History of Family and Fatherland by Carmen Callil…”

But  Sad news from The Shire coloured the rest of the month. I did wonder, however, about the #Occupy movement on 24 November: On occupying, fairyland and/or 21st century pretentiousness?

25 November: my father would have turned 100, so Mainly family takes up that and the recent death in Sutherland of my Uncle Roy Christison. There are lots of revelations in the comments about my great-grandfather John  Hampton Christison, with family historians Ray Christison and Bill Niven really adding value to the post. Best comment thread ever! Smile Wetness, colourful ancestors, Facebook and rellos the next day continues, but especially focuses on Facebook’s role in renewing family links. This month has been a classic example.

28 November was Roy’s funeral in Sutherland: Roy Hampton Christison 1927 – 2011. See also:

And speaking of The Shire, here are some good-looking people who live there:


That’s David, Lauren and Nathan – grand-niece and grand-nephews. The occasion: Lauren’s Year 12 Formal. And the last post in November.