At long last news - the new Seat of Pants is established. Barney and I have deigned to endow the somnolent Victorian hamlet of Larrikin's End with our permanent presence. The Pantibago rolls no more. The already rock-bottom real estate market is set to burrow down to new subterranean depths with our arrival and we take great pride in our pivotal role in the current financial correction. We are certain the reconfigured global community will be a better place with fewer investment bankers and mortgage sharks in it. Ma Pants wishes it to be known that she has also played a significant role as her recent extended hospitalisation has kept her away from the shops for a record six weeks. Barney and I genuinely believe that you get the house you deserve. We would say that wouldn't we because, incredibly, we now have a wonderful cathedral of eighties kitsch with the spectacular ocean views for which we scoured coastal Australia with the diligence of the Brangelina bunch in search of new blood. Regard the fruits of our extended labour above as this is the view from our 'deck'.
Feel free to move here now that we have lowered the tone - you can get a house for a song. Barney managed to secure his own place below with a rather shakey but nonetheless moving rendition of Owl By Myself. You have to hand it to the little bugger, he can certainly spot a business opportunity. Asking himself the question 'what's the thing people most want in a financial meltdown?' he came up with the profound and insightful answer, 'strong drink'. He immediately contacted his old friend from last time we were over this way, Wacko the Wombat who'd had a big win on the Melbourne Cup and they've set up a vodka bar. You may recall the barnster considered the Victorian motto of The Place To Be his personal invitation to Nirvana so it was the only choice for a moniker. Naff as Nutella on toast, but then, that's Barney
As is the way of all things, I'd no sooner supervised the unloading of the container conveying the collective chattels that comprise House of Pants to our new life, than I had to be off again. Another suitcase in another hall, another home entertainment system to master, another set of baffling streets and incomprehensible internet provision. Barney felt he needed to stay behind this time and get his feet under the table. Believe me, left to his own devices with that shipment of vodka, all of him will be under the table before you can say Abramovich.
Relocating to a different country is a saga of unimaginable tedium as one struggles to learn the names of thousands of service providers and gauge their relative risibility from chance encounters with battle-hardened strangers. One needs a Rumsfeldian grasp of the concept of unknown unknowns to conceive of the scale of the inquiry necessary to get the thousands of gold spotlights in one's residence to shine light down on one's evenings. Three nights in a house isn't quite enough to get to know it well, but we've at least established that our Limoges arrived in exactly the same number of pieces in which it set out. I've bagged the big room with the ensuite bathroom naturally which was fine with Barney who said he'd mostly be sleeping above the shop, which I take it he means literally.
After all the turmoil, I'm only now catching up on world events. The trials of jolly-jape-gone-wrongsters, Russell Brand and Jonathan Ross passed me by completely but, as I write, Barack Obama has just been elected president of the United States. America, we applaud you. Barney, still technically a Californian, sent in his vote on a postcard. He figured if it was good enough for Dubya it was good enough for him and he was confident he'd got the spelling a whole lot righter too. It'll be a couple of weeks before I can settle down and get to know the good people of Larrikin's End and indeed catch up on what's been going on outside the Pantibago for the last year. I hesitate to commit to the resumption of normal service because I've no idea how difficult it will be to get Seat of Pants online. I suspect piece of cake is not in the frame. We'll see.
Later this week, I'll be announcing the results of the inaugural That's So Pants awards for behaviour both beastly and beatific. If you've done me a service in the past year, either fair or foul, expect a gong...