Sunday 2 October 2011


Give the lack of much to do in Lae, we make our own fun. with no movie theatres, no nightclubs, and no expat-friendly after-dark shopping malls, we tend to form little groups based on communal hobbies.

EnterThe "ARSOL's". It's quite an honour to be one. We have our own secret greeting "G'day ARSOL", and yesterday was our Annual Meeting.

ARSOL = Aussie Rules Supporters of Lae.

I'm an ARSOL. A proud ARSOL, infact.

So, yesterday. It was my first Grand Final up here, so my first ARSOL annual event. All the money raised in the tipping comp goes back as prizes, and the GF Party is funded purely by sponsors.

(in a "It Could Only Happen In Lae side note, my friend's company? A sponsor for many years? The company name was wrongly spelled on the Sponsors Board. It's Capacity P/L.. Not Capacitity, ok)

Lae is a funny place. It's stuck in a strange timewarp, where political correctness, OH&S and some of the social justice issue we take for granted back home, seem to have lost themselves on the way. It's Aussie humour of men and farting and taking the piss. There is a very clear gender divide, where people of my sex are still referred to as "ladies" or "wives". It's nothing to be talking to the CEO of a multinational corporation, as he drops the "C" bomb in conversation, gets stonkered and farts publically, all the raucous laughter of his mates. "Poofter" is still considered a term of endearment up here.

Imagine an English upper class boarding school run by Ugly Dave Grey, with Graeme Kennedy as the Pastor, George and Mildred as the grounds-staff and the theme from Benny Hill as the school Hymn. It's Monty Python's "Bruces" Sketch come to life!

That's the ARSOL's.

The loser of the tipping competion has to wear a toilet seat around his neck on GF day. The next-to loser has a pair of ladies stockings hung around his neck, the toes filled with huge salad onions to simulate boobs, and is dressed in a mari blouse. The winner has to publically schkoll a very large schooner of beer and invert it on his head, all the while being egged on by a rousing chorus of "Hooray for Henry, Hooray at last! Hoorary for Henry, he's a horses arse!"

It's slightly furtive in its male-centric-ness, but all good fun. And the sanctioned homoerotica of watching and AFL game just adds to the experience.

It's Aussie hunour that seems to have ripped its way out of the 1970's. It's VFL before the poofters got hold of it and turned it into AFL. It's going straight to the pool room. It's Hoges when he still called Strop a mate.  It's Kingswood Country, where Detetive Seargent Bargearse will still clout you on across the ear and send you home to a Mum who looks like Abigail.

It's a rousing chorus of ""All Coppers are Constables"

It's Lae, mate. And I'm an ARSOL.

copulater, blokes.


Bluenose said...

Hey PG, I never knew I was from Lae, or that I support AFL either, for that matter. But I must be because I've been called an ARSOL before now... ;)

purple goddess said...

hey bluey! How goes it? How's Gottie? Howare things going with Elvis?

Bluenose said...

Hi PG, sorry, been busy. Gottie is havng a couple of weeks off after having her lap-band (just over a year after I had mine). She had it done at her place of work. She's been feeling a bit sore and sorry but today she started to feel a lot better. Still on the liquids only phase so I made a lamb neck and vegetable soup a couple of days ago which she is allowed to have strained. It was bloody delicious if I do say so myself. No reason to have bland yucky slop when you can have tasy yummy slop! He he...