Monday, May 31, 2010

Oil's well that doesn't end

Oil's well by Pants

You want to know how seriously we here at Seat of Pants take the recent deep-sea oil spills? Well, very, as we have no fewer than eighteen of these life-sustaining deathtraps in our backyard. For newer Pantsotees - our backyard is Bass Strait in the South Pacific Ocean.

We wondered how we might participate in the public debate on the future safety and viability of oil and gas exploration in our own region so we tuned into ABC Radio National's Australia Talks. We think this programme should be renamed The Host Talks but never mind.

The company of 'we' comprises the question Why and your own Pants - not actually your own pants obviously but, frankly, if you have any old trews lying around with a view to express we'd be more than interested. Australia Talks would have benefitted from an argument with legs too.

Barney disqualified himself from impartial discussion and gallantly made a declaration of 'oil interests'. He's gone off to grill us some fresh Tasmanian salmon which he plans to serve on a bed of organic wild rice, (which he has assured us he shot himself today from sustainable stocks - the rice I mean. I'm pretty sure he got the salmon through his voligarch connections which probably means they were tortured. We don't like to ask), and seasonal vegetables.

I know he shot the vegetables himself. I was there. Fortunately, I was weeding in the unseasonal patch at the time. We thought better of explaining to Barney that drizzling olive oil over char-grilled slippery jacks does not constitute an 'oil interest' for the purpose of this discussion.

So, chardonnay in hand, the question Why and I were all ears - or both ears if you prefer. And this is what we have learned:-

1) The oil spill has happened because people insist on driving 4WD cars.

We are culpa. By that I mean it's all Barney's fault. Before I had Barney I always drove a BMW.

2) Once an oil spill has happened it's a dreadfully difficult thing to sort out.

We wholeheartedly agree. Here at Seat of Pants we find even spilt milk hard to deal with since Barney self-diagnosed as lactose intolerant.

3) Oil companies would really much prefer that oil spills didn't happen because they fuck with profits like you would not believe.

Yes! We too hate it when people do not get that we want what we want because we want it.

Ommm. Ommm. Ommm.

Sorry, we have to chant that little ritual to get our vodkamisu - it's a special dessert Barney makes that renders us pathologically confessional which is why I'm going to tell you about our own oil slick experiment here at Seat of Pants.

We have spilled oil for the benefit of humanity. We have mixed it with balsamic vinegar in the name of science and made a miraculous discovery.

Look at the picture above. You see a smiley face - yes? (If not, please consult a psychotherapist immediately). Now, I'm going to let you in on a miraculous secret. Convert that picture to a thumbnail and you will see the eye of ... Well, yes, it could be Jamie Oliver.

We're terribly sorry that we can't present here a more scholarly view of the whole oil platform threat. When the host of a supposedly serious discussion programme on the nation's most prestigious radio network tells you he's about to 'get a comment off' a government minister and that government minister replies that he 'don't want to make no comment', the question Why and I are left wondering whether Martin Scorsese is writing the script...