Addicted to busy-ness

Are you feeling like you should be getting on with something else? You're probably suffering from that all-too-familiar modern day complaint of being super busy and you need to sit down, take a breath and read this insight from satirist/cartoonist Tim Kreider's book, We Learn Nothing on the subject: "It is, pretty obviously, a boast disguised as a complaint. And the stock response is a kind of congratulation: 'That's a good problem to have.' Notice it isn't generally people pulling back-to-back shifts in the ICU or commuting by bus to three minimum-wage jobs who tell you how busy they are; what those people are is not busy but tired. It's almost always people whose lamented busy-ness is self-imposed ... . They're busy because of their own ambition or drive or anxiety, because they're addicted to busy-ness and dread what they might have to face in its absence."

Housing shortage solution

Jan writes: "We own a rental property in a central suburban area. It is one of five properties that was a shop, but was converted to residential in the early 80s. A recent investigation by the council revealed the units did not have the required carparks. The council says we have to use the unit for a commercial purpose. We had been renting our 'studio apartment' to a beneficiary for $175 per week. He has no car, and now has nowhere to live. There must be many small commercial properties in the suburbs that are hard to rent. Many of these would make ideal cheap accommodation."


But for a few centimetres...

To the driver of the silver car on Schnapper Rock end of Kyle Rd last Friday. A reader writes: "I know it sounds like fun, but letting your little son stick his head out of his window on to the oncoming traffic when you're doing at least 80km/h down the dip is very dangerous. Kyle Rd is narrow. If I was just a few centimetres to the right when I'm passing you ... He wouldn't have been wearing his seatbelt either, to be able to stand up."