#244 – Low Interest Rates

5 09 2011

The bogan understands economics. With a level of understanding akin to James Cameron’s grasp of screenplays, the bogan will frequently invoke its right to free speech to opine vociferously on the performance of the economy, thus the performance of the government of the moment. And the bogan knows that there is only one true measure of economic performance: interest rates.

Interest rates are the Reserve Bank’s sole means of regulating an overinflating economy, or spurring on sluggish consumer and business spending by discouraging or encouraging bank lending. However, unlike the ‘conventional’ economic wisdom, which the bogan is assured by News Ltd is spurious, the bogan knows that a truly strong economy exists only when interest rates are at all-time record lows. The bogan approaches interest rates much like a climatologically paranoid beaver. Should it rain heavily, the beaver’s dam could well be fucked. The bogan, loaded up with $500,000 of borrowed money to pay off the McMansion, views rising interest rates much like as incoming inclement weather; that is, a clear signal of impending economic doom.

Thus, every month, there is a near-pornographic obsession in the trashmedia with the upcoming announcements on interest rates, as ‘journalists’ rapidly calculate the monthly cost facing overleveraged bogans’ average mortgage repayments. Accordingly, bogans will express outrage when the banks have the temerity to ‘pass on the rate rise’. National politicians will then fuel the flame of righteous bogan fury, claiming that the banks have a responsibility to bogans everywhere, and that their behaviour (making a profit) is un-Australian.

Once the dust has settled, the bogan will begin complaining to everyone about how the rising interest rates are the government’s and the banks’ fault, and that they are now in ‘mortgage stress’, because that it a term they heard Kochie use once. This is despite the fact that mortgage rates are still about half the level of 1991. This is also despite the fact that the bogan has happily loaded up the credit card at 20% for a new bookshelf from IKEA, a 0.25% increase in the interest rate is enough to send the bogan into a seething rage.

The bogan, under the extraordinary levels of mortgage stress it inherited due to the policies of a government that has no control over interest rates, will approach the bank, asking to fix its exchange rate. It understands economics, but not fixed or variable mortgages. It resigns itself to watching the monthly announcement on the increase in interest rates, and will then exercise its right to free speech to opine vociferously about how unaffordable housing is in Australia.





#243 – Perspective-Based Photography at Famous Landmarks

25 08 2011

“Wait…move your left hand over a bit…that’s it…nah, wait, you missed it. Fuck. Try again.”

Travel to any part of the world with any landmark that has appeared in a James Bond movie or a Contiki catalogue, and you will undoubtedly hear words to this effect. With a strong Australian dollar, cheap flights, and internet accommodation bookings, the newly internationalised bogan has embraced overseas trips/tours/drinking with a previously unseen fervour. They then decide, in their uncommonly belated manner, that it would be totally bitchin’ if they posed alongside a famous landmark, employing their unparalleled grasp of telephoto perspective to create the impression they’re, you know, holding it up! While the bogan has precious little perspective on life, empathy, culture, and modesty, it has an unlimited desire for perspective in its photography.

How artistic and clever it makes the bogan feel to have come up with such a devastatingly effective photo. The several hundred other travelling bogans undertaking the same process within a 50 metre radius are clearly ripping off what is an original idea. It is inconceivable that anyone other than that one particular bogan could have realised how extreme it would be if a photo made the Eiffel Tower look really small, with the tip being squeezed by the oily pincers of the bogan.

After the magic of the digital camera allows the bogan to make the requisite 300 attempts to place the photo’s two subjects in harmonious alignment, it can be taken home, enlarged 100 times and placed on the wall of the formal living room. The roaring success of the photo is enough to induce the bogan to tell its friends that it’s thinking of becoming a pro photographer. Indeed, the possibility to take more perspective-based photos (along with V Australia now flying to North America) may lure the bogan to journey to NYC to create a sidesplittingly unprecedented scene where the Statue of Liberty gets sodomised from behind. An alternative, and equally appealing option is to kiss the Sphinx, and then make a joke about getting older pussy. Or, or, what about one where it looks like the ruins of the Acropolis are getting stomped on?!?!

The bogan will never, ever, ever tire of this.





#242 – Playing the Market

19 08 2011

The bogan’s love of making a quick buck is well noted, so it was only a matter of time before it turned it’s liliputian attention span to the sharemarket and its promise of easy, maxtreme wealth. But the bogan isn’t interested in investing. In doesn’t care for fundamental analysis, P/E ratios or portfolio diversification. Even the shortest investment horizon is too long by half. The bogan wants a quick fix, a super expressway to leviathan plasmas, hot asian escorts and solid gold houses.

Taking Koshie’s advice on Sunrise, the bogan puts $5000 in a managed fund. But after a year, the bogan is shocked to learn the fund has only made a paltry 12% (despite outperforming the market by 4%). It expected to turn to that $5000 into at least $100000 by now!

The exasperated bogan then accompanies its entrepreneurial mate Troy to a seminar that promises retirement by 40. The bogan loves being in on a secret, and the seminar seems to offer an exclusive avenue to intense max millions. Two hours later, however, the bogan exits the seminar hungry, confused and dissatisfied: the free sushi had weird seafood in it, it doesn’t understand what a CFD is, and the only time it had ever been exposed to a stop order in the past was when it attempted to enter its partner’s back door without prior permission. Besides, the promised 25% per annum return is still grossly inadequate.

Its plans of becoming the next Warren Buffett buffeted, the bogan considers doubling its money at the dogs when the conversation at Thursday night poker turns to the market. “Boys,” the bogan’s business mate Troy says to the attentive crowd, “a mate of mine gave me a hot tip…” Scrambling outside in between Coronas, the bogan jumps on the iPhone to his wife. “Jade, we’re gonna be rich,” he exhorts excitedly. “Can you free up some money…”

The next day, the bogan puts the children’s education fund in Yam Aha Ltd, a highly leveraged agricultural investment scheme, growing yams in Papua New Guinea with revolutionary farming techniques. Not content with the promised 150% return, the bogan then takes out a margin loan, boosting his surefire, guaranteed return to a whopping 300%.

Initially the stock does well, prompting the bogan to gloat to his friends about ‘playing the market’ and purchase a new jetski and 3D plasma. One month later the stock has turned south as tropical cyclone Wilson leaves the summer yam harvest in ruins, and the bogan yammering. Initially, the bogan slogs it out like an ANZAC, taking solace in Troy’s sage forecast that the world price of yams is about to rocket as the Chinese government produces ethanol from yam extract. The next month, however, the stock plummets before going into a trading halt as ASIC announces Yam Aha is really a front for endangered parrot smugglers.

Forced to sell the McMansion to meet the margin call, the bogan vows to be wiser with his money in future. Until Troy tells him about the octagon scheme….





#241 – Theatre Restaurants

10 08 2011

Despite the best efforts of their marketing departments to abandon their traditional audiences, theatres around Australia remain only occasionally of interest to the bogan. This occurs during the runs of things such as Shane Warne the Musical, Puppetry of the Penis, and the farewell tour of something they once fleetingly liked.

However, there is one type of theatre that the bogan has maintained a hunger for. A theatre whose exterior is so maxtreme that it couldn’t possibly contain things that bogans do not like. Theatre restaurants have been present in Australia’s capital cities for decades, and also can be found in bogan strongholds such as Newcastle and the Gold Coast.

While theatre restaurants may appear to be particularly bogan, there is a brutal subtext to these venues. The people who theatre restaurants pay to amuse the bogan on stage are very unlikely to be bogans. Generally, they are inner urban uni students or drama graduates who have failed to take Hollywood by storm. As punishment, they are forced to spend the rest of eternity dressed up in corsets and plastic fangs, clumsily overplaying physical comedy so that the bogan knows when to laugh.

Because the actors and hosts at the restaurant all look ridiculous, this gives the bogan the green light to express its own sartorial personality when attending a theatre restaurant. An unfortunate side-effect of this, is that theatre restaurants are popular venues for hens’ nights. The boganic bride-to-be, adorned in enough penis-themed products to impregnate a latex sex doll, is in its element at a theatre restaurant.

These actors will cavort around the restaurant, barking into lapel microphones, and involving selected bogans in the hilarity. Meanwhile, the bogan chews its way through a plate of rubbery beef and blackbean, and offers the room unsolicited insight into what’s on its mind.

As the bogan gnaws futilely on its rapidly congealing meal, it pauses to consider the entertainment value of the miserable actors on the stage before it in silence. While it finds the entertainment to be awesome in the consistent way that the stars of the show will draw attention to the flaws of various other guests, and the buxom wenches seem to be hovering around its table quite a bit. But then, the host, Count Dracula himself, swaggers towards the bogan, eyeing its Elwood t-shirt and lycra sleeve ‘tattoo’…





#240 – Cruise Ships

1 08 2011

When it’s not travelling on budget airlines to the exotic countries of Phuket and Bali, the well travelled bogan enjoys sailing the high seas on one of P&O’s floating pleasure palaces.  The cruise ship represents the epitome of bogan travel, permitting it to chalk up to six stamps on its passport in 8 days, visiting foreign countries like Noumea, Port Vila and Suva, without travelling more than 500 metres from a major port and while enjoying all the comforts of home.

Like big things and shopping centres, the bogan is attracted to cruise ships due to their sheer size. A typical ship weighs in at over 70,000 tonnes, has hundred of rooms, multiple levels and comes equipped with everything a bogan requires: restaurants, nightclubs, casinos, gyms, IMAX theatres and comprehensive in-cabin entertainment; allowing the bogan to eat steak and chips every night, drink stupid quantities of overpriced liquor, gamble, get huge, watch Avatar in 3D and enjoys reruns of Underbelly from its cabin.

Every day, the cruise ship stops at a different, non-descript South Pacific port, where the bogan briefly disembarks from its Neptunian chateau to be greeted by some P&O employed, Polynesian-themed dancers. This will prove the closest the bogan will come to a cultural interchange all day, as it spends the next five hours getting bronzed, snorkelling and trying to haggle with more P&O employees at the gift shop for a Pacific themed woodcarving. After a quick coconut cracking demonstration and sarong tying class, the bogan reboards the Pacific Princess, feeling for all the world like Captain Cook.

That night, the bogan struggles to peel a prawn from its towering buffet plate, regaling its peers with stories of its near brush with death at the tentacles of a giant killer squid and joking how it saw Lote Tuqiri three times that day. After dinner, it drinks wholesale quantities of Corona and hits the nightclubs, hoping to lure a female bogan back to its cabin where it can feed her this year’s designer drug and breach her hull.





#239 – Talking About Joining the Army

25 07 2011

The bogan likes talking about things it never intends on doing. Loudly. The bogan’s love of killing things is manifested in many ways; oversized pets, burning fossil fuels, paintball, and glassing cunts, but perhaps the most devoted bogan love is talking about joining the army. For there is nothing conceivably more maxtreme than talking about shooting an x-treme gun, in x-treme temperatures, in countries and terrain that it is x-tremely unaware of. All in the name of the most x-treme of all causes, National Security. The very thought of talking about defending its shores and bestowing freedom to some funny brown coloured people feeds its highly strung temperament like a tonic distilled from crack. The merciful warrior, the apotheosis of freedom and soldier of peace simply cannot wait to talk about joining the Armed Forces. Once its back recovers.

The bogan cannot actually join the army for a multitude of reasons. Whilst the appeal of driving an enormous armoured vehicle is certainly undeniable, the bogan’s normally unwavering enthusiasm for killing things seems strangely lacklustre when it comes to actually enlisting and becoming the thing. Upon deeper reflection, the reasons for such paucity of endeavour become even clearer. Neither Iraq nor Afghanistan boasts clubs where it can get loaded on Jagerbombs and glass cunts. But it fails to realise that both countries have abundant quantities of real bombs and its inhabitants can quite easily shoot cunts, should they so desire. There is also the issue of a distinct lack of flesh exposure amongst women in these war torn lands. The bogan knows this and doesn’t like it.

The bogan is never one to stray too far from its comfort zone, and the army requires it do too many pesky things that get in its way. In a curious discord from its usual pit of ignorance, the bogan it seems, realises that joining the army is nothing like being Jason Bourne. Or Matt Damon, for that matter. The bogan concludes this landmark glimmer of introspection by inwardly vowing to go and work in the mines, while continuing to verbalise a feigned plan to surpass Australia’s victory at Gallipoli.





#238 – The Australian Dollar

20 07 2011

The Australian dollar is the only currency that the bogan believes in. It’s the currency that last year’s designer drug can be purchased in, it’s the currency that Centrelink can be defrauded in, and it’s the currency that can be acquired in wholesale volumes when one goes and works in the mines. While Australia’s economy was doing very well through the middle of last decade, there was a problem. Other nations were also doing well, and the exchange rate of the Australian dollar was not high. This weighed heavily on the bogan’s heart whenever it proposed to venture to Thailand, Bali, Thailand, or Bali.

Having a moderately valued currency was like getting beaten at cricket by Bangladesh. Bogans were unhappy. Unable to afford yet another Contiki Tour, a meeting of bogans was convened at the local glassing barn. The first idea raised was that everyone should join the army, and go and f**k up other countries in order to cripple their economies. This suggestion was received positively, but due to the fact that bogans mainly just talk about joining the army, it was not practical. The second idea raised seemed irrelevant, but turned out to be inadvertently genius. “Bugger this, I’m going to go work in the mines”, uttered one bogan from underneath its Von Dutch trucker cap. And so it was, even more bogans moved northwards and westwards to dig holes for their Chinese overlords.

Soon after came the subprime mortgage crisis in the United States, which subsequently became a debt-crisis that engulfed the developed world. But not Australia; it even avoided a recession due to the ongoing Chinese demand for Australian holes. Miraculously, the Aussie battler dollar began to rise from the canvas. Unsteady at first, it lurched past 90 US cents in October 2009, falling back again in mid-2010 due to the deferral of interest rate rises. While deferring interest rate rises pleases the bogan, deferring the inflation of the Aussie dollar displease the bogan very nearly as much. Hence, like the little ANZAC that it is, it came again. Mind you, much of this was due to the US Federal Reserve was desperately trying to devalue its currency in order to revive its own uncompetitive and/or obsolete export industries.

On Monday, 31st January 2011, the bogan woke to find the lemon-coloured morning sunlight playing whimsically on the folds of its Ultimate Fighting Championship bedspread. On this glorious day, the Australian dollar had surpassed the US dollar for the first time since its float in 1983. The bogan reclined in its bed, entertaining pleasant fantasies of Thai ladyboys throwing themselves at bogans in exchange for one Australian dollar, and monstrous bright pink Hummers costing just a week’s salary. The bogan was king of the world, right where it belonged. Chants of “Aussie Aussie Aussie, oi oi oi” could be heard rattling up the McMansion-lined avenues of suburbia.

Sensing its patriotic duty, and with the “stuff is cheap online” mantra of people who dared to disagree with Gerry Harvey rattling in its ears, the bogan jumped on its computer, and bought things from overseas websites, wielding its Australian-denominated credit card like a samurai sword. To complete the forgiveness process of Tiger Woods, it purchased a $2,000 Tiger Woods Tag Heuer golfing watch. It would have cost heaps more a few months previously, and this purchase would be the perfect way to breathe life back into the abandoned “get my golf handicap below 10” new year’s resolution from 2004.

Unwittingly, the bogan’s acquisition of foreign products was limiting the dollar’s capacity to rise further, but the bogan did not care, because more holes were getting sold to China, and if Western Australia endures Queensland-esque flooding, those holes will become completely sick places to do some maxtreme jet-skiing. While Australia’s non-mining export industries (like… um… Keith Urban…) are suffering due to the value of the dollar, Keith’s problems do not register on the bogan’s radar unless expressed in song form, preferably in a duet with Bernard Fanning.

So for now, the bogan strides along the glittering promenades of its local Westfield with a spring in its step. Its Aussie dollar is totally sticking it to the yanks, its Aussie dollar is totally enabling boganism to ascend to the next level of consumption, and its Aussie dollar is currently driving BHP Billiton to develop an Olympic-standard hole in South Australia that brings with it the hope that the Australian dollar will supplant gold as the one true store of value. Unless China decides that it prefers Mongolian or Brazilian holes, but that won’t happen, because the bogan knows that Australian holes are the best in the world.

 





#237 – Conspiracy Theories

15 07 2011

The bogan knows things. It doesn’t know how it knows; it just knows. Often, things that the general population is not aware of. Even more often, the bogan knows things when the information is presented to it in a facebook group, a trusted news source, or in Andrew Bolt’s column. The bogan just knows.  The bogan’s desire to lap up conveniently edited pieces of information and then parrot them back as the comprehensive truth is a conceptual combover capable of cladding even the baldest of theories in half a dozen tenuous strands of delusion. The bogan’s ability to rapidly determine the true nature of things spares it from the need to learn the context, alternatives, or ramifications of any area of knowledge it turns its attention to. This renders the bogan more efficient than the rest of society, freeing up time for it to go out and be extreme at awesome stuff while everyone else plods along like suckers.

Not content to just hastily weigh in on standard topics, the bogan seeks out preposterous claims that nobody else has ever heard of. Who could have known for example, that the unassuming rodent-canine hybrid known as the Chihuahua can cure asthma, or that sneezing seven times in a row releases the same endorphins as when having an orgasm. The bogan knows these things.

Its insatiable need to know things also extends to more complex issues such as assassinations, the chemical composition of drinking water or the veracity of global warming. While the world’s thinking community remains vexed, the bogan’s verdict is in. Climate change for instance, is nothing but a ‘Trojan Horse’ for power-hungry scientists to force their big taxing, redistributive socialist green left agenda on ‘hard working Australians’. The bogan also seems convinced that much of the country’s drinking water is contaminated ‘with that filthy fluoride stuff’, an assertion it will loudly bellow while cooking in its non-stick pan, hosing its Buddhist-iconography garden ornaments or cleaning its swimming pool (all being made from inorganic fluoride). The knowledgeable bogan will then espouse the safety benefits of drinking vitamin water while punching out an SMS at 110 kilometres per hour.

The bogan also knows that ‘climate change’ (the bogan always places air quotes around this phrase) is a conspiracy by latte-sipping greenie ivory tower affogato-belt eggheads trying to get more research funding/establish a One World Government. To paraphrase Heathen Scripture: Climate change is a theory now, ‘like gravity. And Adelaide.’

Further still, if a bogan sees evidence of a celebrity with a conspiracy theory, its truth value becomes gospel multiplied by max. The primary exception to this is the bogan’s scepticism towards Tom Cruise and the Church of Scientology, which attract great boganic mirth. After all, Tom Cruise’s aliens look different to the drawing that uncle Mick did of the time that he saw martians after being offered a funny cigarette at the pub. In fact, Scientology is a sinister scheme devised by the government to channel taxpayer dollars into getting aliens to overthrow Palestine and steal all of the oil and feed Elvis to George Bush who is actually the guy from the Da Vinci Code. The bogan just knows.





#236 – Sex Addiction

8 07 2011

The bogan likes having someone else to blame. This is the default strategy for mitigating its inability to manage its own behaviour. Celebrities have also worked out some time ago that they can be excused from blame in this manner. So in an attempt to more effectively adopt the morally bankrupt ethos of Two and a Half Men, the bogan seeks to bed as many massive canned blondes as possible. A maxtreme sex life is the only sex life a bogan could want. And like Charlie Sheen himself, the bogan is pleased to be able to blame this sexual compulsivity on a credible-sounding quasi-medical phenomenon – sex addiction. While the bogan may not be sufficiently equipped to ponder the troubled epidemiology of addiction, the bogan knows that sex addiction offers a convenient justification for its seedy promiscuity. After all, the next (il)logical step from its love for spurious allergies is the love for spurious and clinically dubious compulsions. Sex addiction is definitely the bogan’s favourite fake addiction. After all, it is the faux addiction du jour in the celebrity world.

While the bogan may feign outrage at the prospect of an immensely beddable, world-famous, thirty-something-billionaire-celebrity cheating on their partner, it will proceed to forgive them and realise that it also suffers from the same crippling condition. So when it finds itself repeatedly self-administering the stranger one Friday night, it does so safe in the knowledge that it shares the same ailment that allowed Tiger Woods to cheat on his wife. The endless and mysterious quest for ‘tapping that’ is finally a medical condition, much like leprosy or gout. And the bogan is well and truly afflicted.

Successful marketers are quick to milk the potential of a bogan/celebrity crossover, and have previously seen good returns from selling elaborate ‘cures’ for the bogan’s fictional conditions. Upon learning that David Duchovny’s raging sex drive was quelled by a self-help book, the bogan will happily drop $49.99 for a copy of Out of the Shadows: Understanding Sexual Addiction, and wishes it too could sign up for a $60,000, six-week treatment program somewhere in California, simultaneously being titillated by tales of infidelity featuring Hollywood’s hottest and horniest. Alas, this is but a dream, and the bogan is destined to continue suffering under its crippling sex addiction. It must go on sharing its parlour of boganic pleasure with as wide a range of sexual desperados as it can lure home from suitable glassing barns.





#235 – WAGs

5 07 2011

At this point, it barely requires mentioning that the bogan lusts for celebrity and its trappings with a fervour that would shame the randiest 13 year-old bogan upon the discovery of RedTube. Of course, the bogan is more than happy to live vicariously through those who can achieve fame in their place and sportspeople are among the most prominent of these. They are often local, and are willing to engage in maxtreme behaviour in public which the bogan can be outraged at, then forgive. There is, however, a celebrity that appeals even more greatly to the bogan than the footballer or cricketer. Their girlfriend.

By their early twenties, even the most self-deluded male bogan has reached the conclusion that it is not destined for a lifetime of sporting glory and fawning groupies, instead spending their time at the local footy club drinking Mexican beer and discussing how awesome it would be for all seven of them to shag one chick.

The femme-bogue, however, has an alternative. One she can cling to for at least another decade. One that is more appealing, as it requires little more effort than the willingness to endure multiple penetrations from seven smashed athletes. She still has a chance to be a WAG. The WAG is, to the bogan, famous, yet has achieved little, if anything, beyond appearing on the cover of Zoo Magazine under the guise of being Nathan Bracken’s missus. She has a bloke at her side willing and able to fork over for cosmetic enhancements of all sorts, and actively encourages her desire to paste herself a sinister shade of orange and bare her newly-massive cans in the mens’ magazines or red carpet.

Moreover, the WAG has only two genuine obligations; to attend football matches (watching said matches is optional) and stapling an expensive-looking dress covered in sequins to its breasts once a year at the sport’s awards night. Beyond this, the WAG can pursue any and all goals it chooses; from hosting a travel show to interviewing other WAGs on the red carpet.

The result of all of this culminates in the femme-bogue deciding that becoming a WAG is her calling. Her destiny. It is what she was put on Earth to do. This results in weekly pilgrimages to weekend haunts known for containing athletes, where the femme-bogues stalk their prey with a single-minded, ruthless determination more commonly witnessed among rutting caribou. By the end of the night, the female bogan has passed out in a tangle of arms, legs, sequins and shame and its male counterpart is in the hospital, having been glassed in the side of the face by the half back flanker it thought was hitting on its missus.