June 12

Betty Botter’s Batter – An expansion on a classic

From Wikipedia:

Betty Botter is a tongue-twister written by Carolyn Wells. It was originally titled “The Butter Betty Bought.” By the middle of the 20th century, it had become part of the Mother Goose collection of nursery rhymes.


I used to be into tongue-twisters as a kid and my favourite was “Betty Botter”. The version I committed to memory was:

Betty Botter bought some butter. “But”, she said, “This butter’s bitter. If I put it in my batter, it’ll make my batter bitter. But if I buy a better butter, it’ll make my batter better.” So Betty Botter bought a bit of better butter and that made her batter better.

A nice tongue-twister, but not very exciting. She has a problem with some butter and she just goes out and buys a replacement.

Well, I thought I might be able to expand the Betty Botter story a little bit. Here is what I came up with…


Betty Botter’s Batter
My expanded version of a classic tongue-twister

Betty Botter bought some butter, “But”, she said, “This butter’s bitter. If I put it in my batter, it’ll make my batter bitter. But if I buy a better butter, it’ll make my batter better…

But Betty’s brother Buddy Botter said, “Why not try adding water?”

So Betty Botter blended bitter butter with a bit of water that her brother Buddy brought her. But no matter how much water, the bitter batter wasn’t better. All it was was a bit wetter.

“Wet and bitter batter isn’t better!” Betty barked, but before her brother said rebuttal, Betty’s mother butted in. “I’m sure it could be a bit better. Why not add bit of feta? Salt’ll balance out the bitter, and absorb a bit of water.”

Then Betty’s father Mr Botter contributed to the banter. 

“Back when I was but a boy, my best friend Billy’s neighbour’s, barber’s brother was a brilliant baker. He always bragged he blended better with the best electric beater. Your broken, busted baby beater is why your batter isn’t better.”

Though it sounds bonkers, Betty Botter couldn’t let this batter beat her. So Betty, bartered, begged and bought a brand new, bright blue, Breville beater! Then with the best electric beater she beat the batter mixed with feta, blending water Buddy brought her in with bits of bitter butter.

And in the end this beaten blend of wetter, bitter, feta batter, was just plain bad and Betty muttered “I shoulda bought a better butter.”

Her brother Buddy smiled and bade her, “Come on Betty, don’t be bitter.  Sure we botched a basic batter, but we’re blessed with something better… You see, what matters is not batters, but bonding with our fellow Botters.”

THE END

(115)

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December 13

MaGloon’s Balloons – A Poem

magloon

 

I love the way the Scottish say a word with double O’s.

It has such length, such gutsy strength. I’ll show you how it goes…

(say the rest of the poem in a Scottish accent)



MAGLOON’S BALLOONS

A poem by Simon Camilleri

written 6/5/2010

One afternoon, Lachlan MaGloon was driving to the Melbourne Zoo.

His young nephew was turning two and he was late, so off he zoomed!

Inside his BMW he had a bunch of blue balloons.

He’d give them to his young nephew as long as he could get there soon.

But as the Zoo came into view, the blue balloons across him flew!

He canna see through! They blocked his view! So blindly he sped to the Zoo.

With a mighty BOOM he crashed right through the front gate to the Melbourne Zoo.

The guard said, “HEY YOU!! You canna do that, you must park and then pay too!”

But like a hoon, Lachlan MaGloon sped off into the busy Zoo

Past kangaroos and cockatoos and lions left looking confused.

Right past emus and turtles too and lizards with their tongues of blue,

Straight past gnus who just said “moo” and doves so scared they lost their “coo”.

Past brave baboons who flung their poo, but none could stop his journey through.

Until he reached the Court of Food, or “food court” as it may be known by you.

The children screamed as at them he flew. What was Lachlan MaGloon to do?

He couldn’t see! He has no clue! Those darn balloons still blocked his view!

He slammed the brakes, while praying to the God he knew would see him through.

His screeching BMW crashed to a halt as if by glue!

Now bruised, confused and woozy too, with messed hairdo and one lost shoe,

Lachlan MaGloon emerged to view his car just missed his young nephew.

“It’s you! It’s you!” cried his nephew who round his neck his arms he threw.

Then from the car Lachlan MaGloon, retrieved the bunch of blue balloons.

The crash had sadly popped a few, but when he viewed the smile of a boy aged two,

Despite all he’d been through,

yes he knew it was true,

he was glad he had come that day to the Zoo.

(2308)

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June 29

10 Problems with “The Burnt Toast” Story

 

What a sweet story with a lovely message… NOT!!

Allow me to have a not-too-serious rant about the 10 big problems with this video.

  1. Firstly, if the mum had had had such a “long and stressful day at work” and she was so exhausted that all she could put together for dinner was jam and burnt toast, why didn’t dad get off his butt and help her out? Presumably they both are working. Why is mum making dinner while dad sits at the table waiting to be fed? In the end, as I will show, his laziness led to guilt, lies and possibly even cancer.
    .
  2. When the toast is brought out to dad, he doesn’t say anything to his wife or acknowledge that clearly she wasn’t coping. The child even says they were waiting to see dad’s reaction, but even the child is surprised that he ignores her completely and simply talks to them about their day.
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  3. Prompted by his coldness, or maybe out of fear of his judgment, or maybe just as a cry for help, the mum then apologizes for the toast being burnt. Why is she apologizing? I guess, maybe she is just acknowledging that burnt toast is horrible and she wishes she had more energy to serve him the three course dinner he is obviously accustomed to.
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  4. The child “will never forget my dad’s reply”, and I won’t either. He straight up lies to his wife. He says, “Honey, I love burnt toast!” What is that going to do?? Either it will come across as some sort of sarcastic joke, again not really acknowledging her exhaustion, or worse still, it will come across as 100% truth. This will just leave the mum wondering what kind of weirdo has she married that actually loves burnt toast and if she accepts that, she may get the impression that in future she SHOULD burn his toast, as that is his strange preference.
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  5. The child clearly sees through his lies and that night they decide to ask their dad if he was telling the truth or lying. Dad unapologetically says that yes he was lying but that he just did it to not hurt mum’s feelings. What sort of lesson is THAT teaching his child? I can see inside their mind, Honesty Island crumbling like in the Pixar movie “Inside Out”! He makes out that lying was his only option, but there were so many things he could have said to his wife. How about, “I forgive you” or “No need to apologize, I understand you’ve had a hard day.” Or even, “I should be the one apologizing. We both worked today and you clearly deserve a rest more than me. How about I order takeout?” But no. He goes with a lie and tells his child that that’s the best way to love people.
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  6. Not only does he admit to lying to his wife, he then goes on to lie to his child – or at least tell he says something that is incorrect. He says “Burnt toast doesn’t hurt anyone, but words do.” Wrong dad. Check your facts. A quick Google search would show you that the burnt bits of toast contain an alarming high level of the chemical acrylamide – a cancer-causing toxin. His lies and misinformation does nothing to warn both his wife and child of the carcinogenic dangers of burnt food and may actually lead them to eat more of it! Good one dad!
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  7. Also, are words really that bad? They definitely don’t cause cancer, that’s for sure! But even if they can sting some times, do we really want our kids to lie rather than say words that might “hurt” people? Sure we want to teach our kids that hate speech, bullying and cruel mockery is unacceptable, but in this “safe space”, politically-correct, hyper-sensitive culture that our kids are growing up in, do we really want to teach them that any words that might hurt are forbidden and lying to someone’s face is preferable? We used to try to teach our kids resilience to words. Rather than the unscientific theory that “Burnt toast doesn’t hurt anyone, but words do”, maybe dad should have remembered the old saying “sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.” Words may hurt someone’s feelings sometimes, but they won’t do permanent damage like break your bones or give you cancer!
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  8. The video ends with this moral: “To accept your mistakes and appreciate your differences – that is the key for a healthy and long-lasting relationship.” A nice enough message, but is that really the moral of this story? Who accepts their mistakes? Does the dad? No, he is oblivious to his lack of helpfulness, he justifies his lies and he spreads misinformation about cancer. Lotsa mistakes there that don’t get accepted. And even if we conceded that poor mum made a “mistake” by serving the Master of the House toast that was burnt, does she accept it? Well, she tries to with her apology, but her lying husband tells her that it wasn’t a mistake at all because he loves burnt toast. Very unhelpful.
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  9. And where does anyone learn to “appreciate your differences”? Who’s differences? The differences between a lazy, dishonest dad and a mum who works hard all day and then has to make dinner for her family? Those are definite differences, but I for one hope the child doesn’t learn to “appreciate” them!
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  10. Lastly, I have a problem with the claim that “accepting mistakes and appreciating differences” is actually “the key for a healthy and long-lasting relationship”. As most people know, honest and gracious COMMUNICATION is actually the key -and that is what this story seriously lacks. If the mum can be critiqued for anything, she maybe should have communicated that she needed help, although it seems the dad already knew what sort of day she had had. The dad should have communicated truth rather than lies, to both his wife and his child. And if he was so sacred of communicating hurtful words, he could have just shut his mouth, got off his chair and communicated love by actually making HER dinner!

The only good communicator in this story is the child, who didn’t sit on their doubts about their dad’s claim to love toast. The child asked for the truth. Those questions may have hurt the dad as they suggested that he was a liar, but like the child in the story of the Emperor’s New Clothes, this child decided to speak up. It is sad that her good communication was answered with bad communication, dodgy justifications, unscientific information and terrible life lessons.

End of rant.

Don’t take it too seriously. 🙂

BURNT FACE

(2086)

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June 11

Parents, Remember the Lord

remember the lord

 

This is my take on Colin Buchanan’s wonderful kid’s song, “Remember the Lord”.

His words are great, but they’re just targeted to children. I reckon we all need to remember the message of the Chorus.Click here if you want to see the official version if not continue below.

So a week out from Dorothy’s first birthday, here is my version, in honour of all first time parents.

 

PARENTS, REMEMBER THE LORD



When you bring home your baby from the hospital ward,

And you have no idea just what’s in store.

And your heart is filled with hopes and dreams

And all of the sudden they just start to scream.

 

Chorus:

Remember the Lord, oh oh.

Remember that he is in control.

Remember the Lord, oh oh.

He’s watching your children, he cares, oh oh.

Remember the Lord, oh oh. Oh, oh.

 

You’ve read “attachment theories” and “Baby Wise”,

But it don’t take long til you realise,

In those early days if your baby’s alive

Then you’re doin okay. Just try to survive.

Chorus

 

When it’s half past 3 and they’re still not asleep

And you’re so exhausted you’re going to weep.

When they’re pooing and spewing and not doing great

Cos the breast feeding hurts and they’re not gaining weight.

Chorus

 

When you keep comparing your kid to theirs

When one can’t roll and the other climbs stairs

When one is bald and the other has hairs

When one steals toys and the other one shares

When one’s expressive and one just stares

When one’s a dream and the other, nightmare

When you know as a Christian you shouldn’t compare

But you’re trying really hard so it’s hard not to care.

Chorus

 

When you want them to grow in their spiritual life

And you think it’s all up to you and your wife

For modelling gospel faithfulness

But you really need grace cos your life is a mess.

Chorus

 

Now I don’t want you to think that havin kids ain’t fun

But it tests your character from day one

It exposes your pride. It bears your soul.

It reveals who you really think’s in control… So…

Chorus

 

(1172)

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June 10

The Man in the Moon – a poem

man in the moon

 

The Man in the Moon

a poem by Simon Camilleri

 

Let us pause and consider the Man in the Moon,

For he glows with a light that isn’t his own.

Created to shine in the darkness of night

By reflecting the glory of another’s light.

 

For it’s by the sun’s light that the moon can be known

And it’s by the sun’s light that its beauty is shown.

It’s the sun that now holds all the orbits in place.

If the sun let it go it would be lost in space.

 

Yet the man in the moon wishes he could break free.

He thinks of his orbit as like slavery.

Every lunar eclipse, to the earth’s furthest side,

The moon tries to escape, and like Adam he hides

 

In the shadow of earth where he thinks none can see,

And there in the dark, he declares “Now, I’m free!”

“Now it’s my time to shine. My own light fill the skies!”

So he tries to shine light. Yes he tries and he tries…

 

But he can’t. He’s a moon. Not a sun. Not a star.

And you can’t be enlightened lest you know what you are.

Still as the moon’s orbit from the earth’s shadow slips,

The moon vows to try harder, the next lunar eclipse .

 

The moon is a fool. Just like you. Just like me.

There’s a reason why madness is called “lunacy”.

The moon thinks he’s so big and the sun looks so small.

If he only could see the sun’s not small at all.

 

Even to us on the earth, they both look the same size.

But it’s due to perspective, it’s a trick of the eyes.

You could fit 64 million moons in one sun!

Yet the man in the moon thinks that he’s “Number One”.

 

So later tonight in the moon’s bright reflection,

Do your own reflective introspection.

See the man in the moon. Cos if you can,

You’ll see that the moon is there in the man.

 


 

“I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen:

not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.”

– C.S. Lewis

 

(1245)

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February 2

One More Year – a poem

Simon 37

 

ONE MORE YEAR

a poem by Simon Camilleri on his 37th birthday


Today I turn 37
One more year closer to heaven
One more year further from birth
One more year of life on earth

One more year to live this life
One more year to love my wife
One more year to raise my baby
Four more months to get sleep… maybe

One more year to serve and bless
To write the scripts for GSF
To direct a great carols event
To help guys fight the elephant

One more year to know God’s grace
To grow in love and hope and faith
To each day live closer to Christ
And daily thank him for this life

I’m 37 for one more year
Yikes… 40 is now feeling near

(1445)

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August 12

Without a Thumb – a poem for Matt Salter

thumb

WITHOUT A THUMB

A poem for Matthew Salter
By Simon Camilleri (12/8/2013)

 

Without a thumb, is life that bad?

Does it really disable?

The corporate myth that “thumbs are great”

I’d say is just a fable.

 

Sure scientists may claim that Man

is more evolved, proposing

that we would still be like the apes

without our thumbs opposing.

 

But I say “bah!” What do they know?

They’ve never lived without them!

Until they try a thumb-free life

I’ll continue to doubt them.

 

They could (like some) shatter their thumb

and if they did I’d wager

they’d soon discover life thumbless

is nothing really major.

 

Sure, you can’t grip, things tend to slip,

and doorknobs are an issue.

True, jars stay jarred cos lids are hard

without that thumby tissue.

 

Sure, you feel hexed when trying to text

and pens are also tricky,

And standing at the urinal

It’s hard to hold your…keys or other such items you might be holding while standing at the urinal.

 

And don’t begin to think you’ll win

if “Thumb Wars” is declared.

But still it’s true, the cons are few.

You shouldn’t really care.

 

See thumbs were useful long ago

in times now in the past.

You needed them to throw a spear,

but that need didn’t last.

 

In Roman times at colosseums

your thumbs had need worth noting.

Thumbs up was life. Thumbs down was death.

No thumbs was donkey voting.

 

In times Shakespearian you’d bite

your thumb to pick a fight.

Since then it has evolved across

two digits to the right.

 

And in more recent times people

used thumbs to go hitch hiking.

But now with global warming those

without a car are biking.

 

Even now babies don’t need thumbs

to suck them til they tire.

We’ve now replaced God-given thumbs

with plastic pacifier!

 

So you can see, without a thumb

your life won’t really change.

Sure, if you tried to be The Fonz,

your catch cry might look strange,

 

But generally, you will be fine.

In fact life can be greater!

Who cares if you can’t count to 5.

Just use a calculator.

fonz

(6945)

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April 27

10 alternatives to “credobaptism” & “paedobaptism”

I am thinking hard lately about my position on baptism.
The two main positions (at least the two that I think have biblical merit) are “credobaptism” and “paedobaptism”.

Credobaptism basically says you have to have given some form of a profession of faith (belief in the “creed” of the gospel) before you are allowed to get baptised.

Paedobaptism says a child of a believing parent can legitimately be baptised as the parent commits to raising the child in the faith.

Both positions I see biblical support for and I probably will write a blog on my thoughts some time.

For now, I just want to have a laugh, and so if like me, you are still thinking about which position you should hold, I have created 10 alternatives that you may want to consider.

 

MY TEN ALTERNATIVES TO “CREDOBAPTISM” & “PAEDOBAPTISM”

1. “Speedobaptism” – Where you get baptised in the ocean at the beach and you are required to wear budgy-smugglers.

2. “Didobaptism” – Where, as you get pushed under water, you sing, “I will go down with this ship! I won’t put my hands up and surrender! There will be no white fl… blub blub blub.”

3. “Pleadobaptism” – Where the pastor won’t bring you up out of the water until he sees you pleading for air.

4. “Playdoughbaptism” – Where you get dunked into a giant plastic tub of bright orange moulding clay.

5. “Fidobaptism” – Where, after coming out of the water, you’re expected to shake your body to dry off, effectively baptising anyone else who is standing close by.

6. “Readobaptism” – Where you just read every theologian who wrote something about the nature and meaning of baptism, but you never actually get baptised yourself.

7. “TiVobaptism” – Where you get baptised as a baby but it gets recorded and you watch it on TV later when your old enough to make a profession of faith.

8. “Vetobaptism” – Where the UN decides no one is allowed to get baptised.

9. “Peedobaptism” – Where after you go under the water you relax and it gets all nice and warm.

10. “Greedobaptism” – Where you only get baptised because you are promised wealth and prosperity, or alternatively, where you dunk yourself quickly before Han Solo shoots you from under the table.


All valid perspectives. May we think and pray about what the bible says as we reach our own conclusion.

021012_starwars

(4655)

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April 16

REAT MOMENTS IN CINEM

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I went to see Jurassic Park 3D at Village cinemas in Doncaster the other day and I was very excited.

When the movie first came out in 1993, I was 15 and it was one of the most impacting cinema experiences of my life! I actually saw it 11 times at the cinema (a number I have never since beaten) and I have seen it many times since then. So you could say I knew the movie pretty well.

I realised something was wrong with the film when the tops of characters’ heads came dangerously close to the top of the screen. At first, I put it down to a possible necessity of the post-conversion process of turning a 2D movie into 3D, but then one of my favourite scenes came up and I knew someone had majorly stuffed up… and it probably wasn’t Spielberg.

The scene was the one shown above, where the first dinosaur we get to see in glorious CGI rears back and takes a chomp from the upper branches of the tree. As it reared on its hind legs, its head popped up past the screen and the above image shows exactly how it looked in the cinema.

After the film, I informed the manager of the issue and after checking he informed me that yes, the film had accidentally been showing for their entire season projected in the wrong ratio. To their credit, they immediately set about fixing the problem and gave my wife and I two complimentary tickets as hush money… I mean, as compensation.

I posted this story on Facebook and a friend, Roger McLean, asked the great question, “What other movies would lose their impact from bad cropping?”

Below is a few I have thought up.

See if you can pick all the movies as well as what has been cropped out. Leave your answers in the comments below.

Also, if you have any more suggestions, email me your cropped movie moments and if I like them, I’ll add them to the list!

 

NEW FEATURE!
If you can’t guess the movie, click on the photo and see the answer!

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rrrrr

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Snow-White-evil-queen-apple

Count_Rugen's_right_hand

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karate-kid

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les

mylfoot

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akatheu

Darryl Hannah as a mermaid in the 1984 film "Splash."

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anchorman

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back-to-the-future-hoverboard

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(2472)

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March 3

“It’s a Phoney, Phoney World” a song

Mobile copy

IT’S A PHONEY, PHONEY WORLD

an original song by Simon Camilleri

This song has been a fun piece to write. It’s a challenge to me to engage with real life and real people and to unplug myself from the online world.

I still struggle with this daily as I realise my dependance on (and addiction to) technology.

I only hope this tune is so catchy that I start to follow it’s advice to “put your phone away”!

Download the words and chords here!

Perform your own version of the song, post it to YouTube and I’ll embed it below!

technology

(2620)

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