Bullgoose: Wes creates a boom in tractor tyres as Allie sends him to Epic Survivory

Bullgoose supplied this technical kind of photo for his column – it may help to understand Bullgoose but I doubt it.

Chez Piddens. Alice watching TV.

Enter Wes shaking his head and muttering.

Wes: You wouldn’t credit it. You would not credit it. What a nut. Hey Allie, have I gone somewhat doolally of late?

Allie: What?

Wes: Do you think I’ve gone a little bit completely mad in the head?

Allie: Of course. I’ve been assuring you of this for decades.

Wes: Am I becoming forgettative?

Allie: Well, you leave the fridge and car doors open, taps running and gates open, but that’s not new. Have you turned off the welding gas cylinder?

Wes: I, I… wait. That’s a trick question. Wasn’t welding today. Ha!

Allie: So, what’s the fuss?

Wes: See, I’ve been putting helicoils in those stripped holes in the loader frame mount.

Allie: Mmm.

Wes: And I bored them out to 16.5 mm.

Allie: Well done!

Wes: Then I made up a 16mm insertion tool, on account of I only had a 13mm one before.

Allie: Is there any danger of this becoming the least bit interesting to me? Ever?

Wes: And then I go for the helicoils.

Allie: (yawns) Of course you do.

Wes: I spend fifteen minutes trying to wind a 16mm helicoil into a 16.5 mm hole. Should be dead easy, but it will not go.

Allie: The very wilful nerve of the stubborn thing!

Wes: But then…

Allie: But then…

Wes: But then I remember that I haven’t tapped a thread in the hole for the helicoil!

Allie: Well, well! That’s a hell-i-coil of a thing, Wes. (chortles)

Wes: I mean, what a chump, what a putz, what a maroon!

Allie: Wes, Wes, don’t beat yourself up: I’d rather do it for you.

Wes: Thanks for your support. Whatcha watching?

Allie: Solo Survivor New Zealand.

Wes: Yeah?

Allie: They drop you off somewhere extreme, and you’ve got to find food and survive for months alone. Last one standing wins two fifty grand.

Wes: Sounds a bit First World to me. There’s millions of people starving and just scraping by for years and years, and they don’t win a single cent.

Allie: But they’re not alone.

Wes: As long as you’re starving with someone, that makes it better?

Alice: Touché, Mahatma Gonad. Anyway, you should have a go. You’re pretty good in the bush, and I could use $250k of awesome dosh.

This is not Bullgoose on the tractor. Photo: AI

 Enter Little Minch

Little Minch: What’s occurring, Parental Team?

Wes: Your mother’s being quite cruel and hurtful to me, Minchy. Again.

Little Minch: What’s for tea? Epic vittles? I’m starving.

Allie: I think your father should go on Solo Survivor.

Little Minch: Hmm … if it was no-holds-barred survival I reckon you could do it, but they’ve got it rigged.

Wes: Rigged?

Little Minch: You can’t shoot deer and possums at night; you can’t eat eels and if you put in set lines you’ve got to sit there and watch them all day.

Wes: That’s no fun. More things you can’t do than in the Australian Netball Rulebook, as written by Moses.

Allie: It’s fascinating. Look, she’s whittling a toilet seat and considering abandoning vego-ism.

Little Minch: Most people talk themselves up, sit around starving, then talk themselves out of there.

Wes: I’ll be honest with you.

Allie: Oh, here we go!

Wes: I’ve been alone in the bush a lot. I’ve been cold and wet and absolutely starving, but I’ve never gone a single day without a feed.

Little Minch: Never?

Wes: Never. Tell a lie … there was that canyoning trip with The Major.

Little Minch: The who?

Wes: The Major. Old pal and legendary figure involved in the Army Reserve. Knows a lot about survival. Despite hailing from Quirindi, he knows nothing of agriculture, and because he hails from Quirindi, he knows nothing about music that doesn’t twang. Still we get on famously.

Little Minch: When did you starve to death, Daddyo?

Wes: We’d been canyoning down in the dread wilds of the Washpool. When we got back to the Land Rover we cooked up all our food, including our emergency rations, and scoffed the lot for tea. What the hell? We’d made it out. But…

Little Minch: But what?

Tractor on the loose.

Wes: It rained all night, and next morning the track was a steep, greasy disaster. We tried belaying the Land Rover down the ridge with our climbing rope, but it snapped and we had to walk out twenty kilometres. All we had to eat that whole day was half a bush lemon each and a second-hand tea bag that we boiled up three times. And the bellyache next morning!

It was … wait. I’ve gotta go.

Allie: What is it, Wes?

Wes: I, erm …

Allie: What?

Wes: I was putting a bit more air in a tractor tyre. The compressor’s been running for … forty-five minutes. It might …


Oh well, no hurry now.

A lesson to us all.


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