The tail idea was conceived for WOB last week, but a 48hr NBN dropout meant it didn’t get posted.
Our resident journalistic expert on all things Sunbury Seagulls is back in action, this time he is driving out to a property that has been asked to remain undisclosed. Exiting his vehicle, he adjusts his cap as the wind gusts wildly against it, he was proud of the cap – emblazoned with “Make Journalism Great Again” – it caused vigorous conversation for passerbys, some polite nods, the odd drunken agreeable rant, before realising the hat didn’t say what they thought it said, and the odd glassing in bars, again after mistaking it for saying something else…maybe he shouldn’t have gone with red. In any case, whilst many of these conversations outlined the challenges for journalism, that sales of newspapers and magazines were down, ad sales had tanked with the boom of the internet and more varied ways to attract attention and consumers, that some columns were titled in an inflammatory way solely to draw clicks for advertising money, but no matter the challenges dammit, he was going to bring journalistic jobs back, he wasn’t sure how, some people told him they were never coming back…but he was going to do it.
Our intrepid reporter walks through a field lined with oak trees, to find an odd sight – players wearing doctors and nurses uniforms enraptured by an animal that looked like an odd cross between a giraffe and a zebra.
[Dunlop rushes up to greet our reporter]
D: I’m so glad you could make it. this is really an important issue.
[Dunlop gestures at the animal before remarking]
D: Isn’t it magnificent?
R: Well, I can’t say I’ve ever seen anything like it.
D: Right!!!?? And that is why we need your help. This is the almost extinct Australian illegally imported okapi.
R: Hang on…illegally imported?
D: Yes, let me finish…these are the only 2 examples of the illegally imported okapi to exist in Australia. They desperately need your help! We’re hoping this article will raise awareness for the plight of the illegally imported Australian okapi. As you can see, there are only 2 left in their Australian range, I want your readers to help me raise funding, so we can illegally import more okapis and start a captive breeding program!
R: I think there is too much there for me to unpack… but what would you call their “Australian range”?
[Dunlop pulls out a map showing all of Australia shaded in]
D: Oh, they were spread right across the country, in the bush, within the acreages of the wealthy.
R: Right…how did you hear about the plight of the okapi?
D: Oh, I received an email. A great email from a Mr. A. Nonymous, the message said they knew I was an animal lover and would I be interested in sponsoring a critically endangered species to ensure its survival, so naturally I was only too happy to give him a large cut of this year’s wage. After that I was sent an address where I could visit them, so I did.
[Our reporter looks in his phone]
R: You know they’re from Africa, right?
D: Mmm, but see it says there that they are endangered, all the more reason to start a captive breeding program.
R: And how does the owner feel about you bringing a journalist out here?
D: I’m sure he’s cool, the email did say I should forward this to likeminded people.
R: Ok, anyway what are your players playing doctors and nurses?
D: Well, we’ve had a spate of injuries lately, which I personally blame Commissioner Dunlop for – scheduling 3 rounds in such a short timeframe…we’ve got the youngest list in the comp our boys just can’t cope. Anyway, they’re learning how to treat their own injuries in preparation for the inevitable.
R: Fudge has a formidable record, how will you beat him?
D: Fudge may have a formidable record, but he has a lot of old players, we have almost all young players so we’ve designed a game plan around that.
R: Can you give us any more insight than that?
D: Sure, have you ever seen an old dog play with a puppy, the puppy runs around and around, while the old dog conserves energy. We’re going to be that puppy and play keepings off Fudgey’s old dogs, and hope to hell we have a lead before our boys tire.
R: I believe you also have a special weapon this week? A performance enhancing substance?
D: You heard about that? Yes, we’ve studied extensive literature on this substance and believe it could be just the thing to give our boys a boost against Gisborne. There isn’t any proved studies on it that when consumed it’ll produce the same results, but look at the literature, the results are proven.
R: Aren’t you worried about running foul of ASADA?
D: Oh no, we made sure everything was above board, we rang ASADA and they laughed at us. They told us to get off the phone as it was for serious enquries. We sent a follow-up email as I’m sure that person was just a temp, but we received no response, so we’re all good to go.
R: So what is this mystery substance?
D: Well, Gisborne’s players can run, run as fast as they can, but won’t be able to catch our boys because they’ll be full of gingerbread men!
R: And on that bombshell, I think we’ll leave things for this week, Dunlop.