The news has come out of an ordinary day. I had a 9am appointment with my dentist at Croydon for a six monthly dental check. Afterwards, I had to take a walk in the morning sunshine to visit The Red Parasol, then across to the Food Clearance shop where I picked up a couple of bargains. Coming home, Colleen McCullough was being interviewed on The Book Show. Came home, in the door. Switched the radio on to continue listening to McCullough. I had made by favourite rice porridge before I left for the dentist but didn't get time to eat it. Switched on the computer, got the porridge and sat down in front of it. Opened The Age to this.
As Speaker, Harry Jenkins has been a a class and entertaining act. Harry followed in his father's footsteps by becoming Speaker of the House of Representatives. I imagine young Harry eavesdropping on his father's conversations. I imagine conversations and explanations at the family dinner table as young Harry quizzed his father on reasons and histories. I imagine the young Harry being formed to be the Harry we have been watching in the Green Chair of the Australian House of Representatives for quite a long time now.
Harry has acquitted himself well in the role and has been the centrepiece of the sometimes dark, sometimes illuminating, and often theatrical spectacle that is the entertainment of televised Question Time from Parliament House in Canberra.
He has portrayed a variety of characters and emotions: the frustrated but in control Head Master presiding over unruly children (our MPs); the repository of Parliamentary history, knowledge, and proceedings; the representative of Australian democracy as we saw recently when he led the House in response to President Obama's speech in the House of Representatives. He has displayed boredom with the carry-ons of the LibNat Opposition. We have seen, from time to time, a twinkle in his eye. We have seen him laying down the law. We have experienced his frozen silences as he waits for decorum and quiet among the adult children who are on the taxpayers' payroll.
I - and I believe that I am not alone - am just wild about Harry.
An intimate word to Harry:
Harry, I luvs ya. I'll miss ya. Ya all class. I'm shedding a tear or three for ya, Harry. I wish ya all the best, Harry. Lastly, Harry. Keep the Faith! My blessings go with you.
...and there's more
Harry Jenkins Highlights