Pissed Off: 3,300 Baby Boomer Gripes

Australia has five million baby boomers. At seventy-one, I am one of them. I am so pissed off about the state of things, I’ve listed 3,300 gripes (and they are all numbered). Among them:

  • otherwise bright folk, from the PM down, who say ‘amount’ of people instead of ‘number’
  • Australia’s richest person is said to earn $33,000 per minute
  • being beaten at Scrabble by his Filipina mother-in-law, English being her second language
  • leaf blowers
  • lowlife who put needles in fruit to try and kill us
  • greed
  • when the pathology nurse says, with a deep sigh, ‘Let’s try your other arm!’
  • Michelangelo didn’t endow David a little more generously
  • the link between his dentist’s fees to extract his teeth, and the dentist’s kids’ school fees
  • wanting to know if Dynamic Lifter works the same as Viagra
  • asking for a friend
  • the exorbitant cost of building Australia’s major roads: $155 per inch per lane
  • wanting cave rescuers Drs Richard Harris and Craig Challen as joint Governors-General
  • will the in-studio panel on ABC TV Insiders ever drink the coffee?
  • half a large pizza is never enough
  • not knowing how to use most of the functions on his phone
  • five-year-olds, who get away with murder
  • after coronavirus, the millennials plan to do away with all remaining baby boomers

27 Days a Pilgrim

In October 2013, I trekked the historic 800-kilometre Spanish Camino de Santiago de Compostela pilgrimage, from St Jean Pied-de-Port in southern France, to Santiago in north-west Spain. Come with me on my epic journey.

The Way, as it is called in the movie staring Martin Sheen, is a thousand years old. St Francis of Assisi walked it. Popes have walked it. Movie stars have walked it. Prisoners have been made to walk it. I walked it, but not without some mishaps.

Join my adventure including how, after straying off the official pilgrims’ path in half-light, I sensed I was being followed by a man dressed in black, known to be the garb worn by the apostle Saint James, in whose honour the pilgrimage is dedicated. Six times I glanced back to see if he was still following me; three times he was there, three times he’d vanished. But there was a two-metre high cyclone fence either side, providing no way of escape! Was Saint James there for me?


Over 8,000 copies sold. Nominated by the publisher Penguin for the National Biography Award.

One reader, Robyn, wrote: ‘I passed over JACKAROO and read some other books, then finally I got to your book. Previously, I’d thought it probably was a superficial story, more suited to try-hard city folk than someone who’d grown up on a farm. Well, how far from the truth was that! From the moment I started reading the book, I was enthralled. Your gift for telling a story is amazing. Your honesty, humour and candid portrayal of each situation is wonderful. Congratulations.’

Reader Neil wrote, ‘JACKAROO should be required reading for every Year 12 student’. (Not a bad idea!)

We continue to search for a production company keen to turn the screenplay into a movie or TV mini-series. My mentor on the film script, the late Malcolm Robertson, a doyen of the film, theatre and TV industries, believed the screenplay to be iconic, better he said than Red DogPriscilla and Man From Snowy River combined. Such a compliment!