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Rodrigo — the bike that started all thisRoughcut Naming Ride

[Loose Brown writes:]

Yes, here ye, here, ye!!!

The town crier - aka Johnboy of the Riotact joined us on his first and only Naming Ride.

Here ye, here ye. All's well and all were invited of the lengthy Rat Patrol Oz emailing list. Here ye. And Johnboy was never to be the same again ye hear? For after many ales and mindless chatter and collusion, Johnboy be name'd Roughcut Richard [pictuerd on the right] - in honor of him being truly shite with the cutting disk, and by all reports having a... [comment deleted by moderator]. For all are aware that Richard means Cock. Thar be today's news.

In other news I'd just been advised of, Hal Judge of the lengthy Rat Patrol Oz emailing list attended Roughcut Richard's Naming Ride, with only his quick email as introduction, and prove'd himself as a right royal companion, returning a Rat bike that was borrowed, whilist extremely intoxicated, on the same 'eve as it was a'loaned to him, unscathed or a'damaged. And thus he displayed endurance of a kind required for a future Rattus.

And on top of that, on returning the bicycle and making his dangerous trip home, sent the following email, the entirety of which shall appear below:


Truth is a Malleable Resource...

[By Rat Ride random, Night Scribbler:]

"Don’t talk about RP to anyone, not even your partner..."

The earnest words of a wiry RP brother. I gather there is no hierarchy in RP, yet he did speak with the gravitas of a primus inter pares. I wish I had checked with that RP brother about the perimeters and parameters of events covered by the code of silence. Does it cease when a Rat leaves The Pad or when the Rat arrives home? Is a Rat a Rat when riding a freakbike alone or is RP a purely collective entity? Is truth a malleable resource when a Rat is questioned by police?

Which Nazi invented disinformation? Or was it Machiavelli? Whatever, it’s a nifty device to obfuscate the real truth. While fabrication is not my chief source of income, it is my chief passion. My ultimate role model, Hunter S. Thompson, confessed “full-bore lying as a natural way of life” in his unreliable memoir Songs of the Doomed. Sufficient prologue.



It’s possibly 1am. My bleary eyes can’t read my watch or street signs on this cloudy night. I’m rattling along the back streets of somewhere in Dickson, Ainslie, or maybe Braddon if I’ve gone too far.

I got the smooth tang of whiskey in my valves and pistons. It’s not windy and my skull and bones pork pie hat is sitting pretty. I am peddling an esky tricycle (un)kindly lent to me by a good Rat brother named Loose Brown(ask no questions). The esky is not contoured for ass but provides adequate seat if you’re not in a hurry and the terrain is flat. I’m feeling like a teenager. Zigzagging through the dark singing Naboo’s anthem from The Mighty Boosh.

“We're super magic men, we stay up til 5am, though we're bound by shaman law, what goes on tour stays on tour. We're super magic men, we stay ...”

Bright lights yonder. Familiar blue ABC Radio station sign. Comforting beacon.

As perverse fate would have it, I catch the blue light of a police van cruising slowly past the intersection. It turns and stops beside me.

Seasoned police classify members of the public in three basic types: citizen, suspect or psycho. This late at night a fourth category populates the backroads: shitfaced. In the hope of positioning myself as good citizen needing assistance, when the cop winds down his window, I pre-empt amicably with:

“Good evening. Glad to see you gentlemen. I’m totally lost.”

Both cops get out of the van and flash their big torches at the tricycle.

    “What’s this?”

In a tight spot I can be clever. So clever that I don’t understand a fricken word I’m saying.

“It’s a … a mechanical exoskeleton.”

They glare at me like I’m Cornelia Rou on a bad day. I’m not positioning myself well.

    “What are you sittin on?”

I unhook two oky straps and flip open the blue esky. Nuthin' but a wrench and crushed can of bourbon and cola.

    “Had a few bourbons, have we?”

“Yeah just a few, officer. I’m in full possession of my senses … except sense of direction. I’m cycling with extreme caution.”

    “Where’ve you been tonight?”

Should I admit to swarming the bituminous tributaries of the inner-city fringe with freakbikes, buzzing shopping strips, pizza joints and car parks? Should I admit to …


[Six paragraphs deleted]


Police can easy tell you’re lying when you hesitate to answer a simple question.

“Family BBQ in Downer. I brought the mobile esky cos it was BYO.”

The older cop scopes my tricycle, tings the bell and fiddles with the brake levers.

    “Bicycle without working brake. Rider not wear bicycle helmet. Bicycle without visible front or rear lights.”

The young cop, straight out of academy, scribbles in his little book. I hate that.

“I’m aware of those good rules officer, but, with due respect, those rules apply to bicycles.”

They blind me with both high luminance torches.

“It’s a tricycle … a fine tricycle.” I explain.

Leaden silence. I’m wracking my mind for a face-saver.

“You’re absolutely right, in principle. I’ll definitely get a light attached to the tricycle and a proper helmet attached to my head.”

Right then I hear dull thuds from the paddy wagon. Muffled voice.

    “Fucken hurry up ya fuken pig dogs. I’m gunna fucken piss in here!”

I silently thank that yob-head. He makes me look more like a god-abiding citizen.

“I’m just going a few blocks home. If you could point me in the direction of Majura Avenue, that would be very awesome. I’m busting for a piss too.”

I shouldn’t have blurted that out but it was true. I am suddenly dying for a piss. Authorities have that effect on me, specially when I’m juiced.

The old cop chuckles, pointing east.

    “If I see that kiddy bike again, I’ll back the van over it.”

I attach the oky straps to the esky, straighten my pork pie hat and peddle in the direction the sun is expected to rise. Geronimo!

Apart from the sun rising, none of this happened.


Night Scribbler

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