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Financially stressed? Please don’t blame high prices

When Tony Abbott first stood for prime minister, he complained about the price of bread.
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He told the leaders debate it had shot up 12 per cent. It hadn’t. The Bureau of Statistics found it hadn’t increased at all – it had been stuck for a year at $3.88.

Head to Woolworths online today and you’ll see a variety of prices, for different kinds of loaves. I’ve averaged them. Today’s price is $3.55.

We never seem to notice the prices that are going down, or at least we pay far less attention to them than the prices that are going up (or that we imagine are going up).

The inflation rate is 1.8 per cent. But when asked by the Melbourne Institute what we think it is, we typically say 5 to 6 per cent.

The Bureau of Statistics calculates the rate by going into shops and entering into scanners the prices of around 1000 items. It does it over and over again, all over each of ‘s eight capital cities. These days it augments those readings with scanner data from supermarkets and the prices advertised on websites.

But it gets it wrong. And not in the direction you would expect.

It systematically overestimates the inflation rate because it systematically underestimates our canniness.

Here’s how it would work with two brands of baked beans. To start with they might each sell for the same price, and we might buy the same amount of each. Five years later the price of one brand might be 20 per cent higher and the other 5 per cent higher. The Bureau will record an average price increase of around 10 per cent. But the cost to us won’t have increased that much. Over time, we will have shifted our purchases to the brand which has increased more slowly, by 5 per cent.

We do it with everything, switching between brands and between products in order to save money. It’s how we shop.

It is why every few years the consumer price index gets seriously out of whack and needs to be recalibrated. The Bureau has just done it, re-surveying how we spend our money and readjusting the index to reflect updated spending patterns. It used to do it every five or so years. From now on it’ll do it annually.

The Reserve Bank believes that by not taking full account of our canniness, the Bureau has overcounted inflation by 0.4 percentage points. In other words, it thinks our cost of living has climbed by 1.4 per cent rather than 1.8.

And it has a provided a guide to the ways in which we have changed our behaviour.

The price of tobacco almost doubled between 2011 and 2017. As a result, we cut back on smoking. The Bureau’s inflation figures took account of the first but not the second. They had us spending 4 per cent of our budgets on cigarettes when we had actually been spending 2.5 per cent.

The price of electricity climbed 40 per cent. The Bureau took account of that, but did not take account of the ways we cut back on our use of electricity, making the increase matter less.

The price of audiovisual and computing equipment almost halved when adjusted for things such as speed and memory. As a result we bought more of it. The Bureau’s figures didn’t take account of that, meaning they’ve underweighted the impact of those lower prices on our budgets.

Other things changed because we changed. Rent become more important to us because more of us rented. And rents are barely moving. International travel become more important to us because we have become richer. And while its prices have been bouncing around, they’ve changed little for the last four years.

You probably still think you are badly off. You probably are, because your income is barely climbing. But as best as they can be measured, your expenses are under control.

Peter Martin is economics editor of The Age.

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25/04/2020 0

Health & Fitness: Hit the road while away for some destination running

SCENERY AND SERENITY: There was plenty of beauty in the surrounds to admire and appreciate during the Armidale Fun Run on Sunday. Do holidays or trips away throw your health and fitnessroutines intodisarray?
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As I discovered on the weekend it does not have to.

While organising travel and accommodation for a Saturday wedding in Armidale, my friend thought it would also be a good chance to also do some “destination running”.

She quickly discovered the Armidale Fun Run was on Sunday and even quickerhad us entered.

Runningis a great way to explore and see parts of a new town or city and Armidale is beautifulwith its tree-lined streets, clean, crisp country air and mountain ranges in the distance.

ACCOMPLISHMENT: The feeling of crossing the finish line of an event like the one held in Armidale over the weekend is pretty good.

As I was running I thought exploring a new place was one of the many things I love about running. As the run continued I started compiling a mental list and these were the other reasons I came up with:

Community. Being part of a running group or taking part in a community event gives you a sense of belonging and a social outlet.

Support and encouragement. There’s something uplifting about having people call out, ‘Great job’ while you are running or walking. Where else in your day-to-day life does this happen?

Well-being. Running keeps my sanity. When I don’t run I’m cranky and a little agitated. When I do run everything else seems a little easier.

Me time. It mightbe 30 minutes, 60 minutes or 90 minutes but it’s all mine. It’s quiet and it gives me time to think. If you run with a friend, it give you time to connect to others.

Accessible.A lot ofruns or walks now cater for prams and wheelchairs and encourage families to get out and active with a range of distances and terrains to suit a range of ages and fitness levels.

I’m not in it to win it.At the end of the day I run to feel good about myself and to see my own improvements.

Character-building. Taking on any challenge in life adds character. In running that might meanovercoming the thought and feeling of wanting to stop. It can be as much a mental battle as a physical one.

Achievement.It doesn’t always feel good during a run but it feels pretty good when you see the finish line then cross it.

Fitness. Obviously walking or running on a regular basis has a range of health benefits.

So, if you are heading away, plan ahead and see what runs are on while you are there.

HEALTHY EATINGPeter Mullen of Mullen Natural Health Centre has been offering some of his healthy eating tips for spring. This week it is a recipe for Peanut Butter Chia Pudding. He says chia seed puddings are a good wayto keep your energy up through the day:

Ingredients:1/2 cup of chia seeds, 1/2 cup water,400ml can of coconut cream, twoheaped teaspoons of maca powder, twoheaped teaspoons of mesquite powder, two heaped tablespoons of peanut butter (Peter suggests using a good qualitypeanut butter). Method: Blend/whisk until smooth.

SPRING LOADED WORKOUT WEEK #11Incorporating different exercises and harder sessions into your fitness routine can challenge you.

Here is a session to try if you are looking for more of achallenge:

20 squats with one-armed press, 20 shoulder throws with light hand weights, 20 lunges/lunge jumps, 20 bent-over rows, 20 ab rotation with light hand weights, 20 supermans with alternating leg and arm.

Run/walk 5 minutes. Make it harder with intervals.

Repeat with 15 repetitions of each exercise, run/walk 5 minutes then repeat with 10 repetitions and run/walk 5 minutes.

UPCOMING FITNESS EVENTSXRACE, November 17, Stockton:XRACE is a family adventure race comprising 10 mystery challenges along the way. www.xrace苏州夜总会招聘.au/03-newcastle.

Variety Xmas Walk Newcastle, December 10, Speers Point Park:A good excuse to get the family, workplace or group of friends outdoors and moving as Christmas-New Year approaches. www.variety苏州模特佳丽招聘.au.

Newcastle City Triathlon, February 25, Newcastle Foreshore:Offering a range of distances to suit all, be it novices to the advanced and a good challenge for the new year for individuals or teams. www.newcastlecitytriathlon苏州夜总会招聘.au.

Renee Valentine is a writer, qualified personal trainer and mother of three. [email protected]苏州夜总会招聘.au.


25/04/2020 0

Northwood home of Lloyd Rees offered for first time

For almost 30 years after the death of the late great n artist Lloyd Rees his studio below his Northwood home remained untouched.
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The shelves and benches were crammed with pots and jars full of paint brushes, the walls and window splattered in paint, and his paint smock, a jumper and his trilby hat left draped over his wicker chair.

Until recently, when Rees’ son Alan Rees and his wife Jan decided to sell the family home and the Art Gallery of NSW removed the studio’s contents for posterity.

“There was just no motivation to change it because it’s such a symbolic area of the house,” said Jonathon Rees, grandson of the acclaimed landscape artist.

Rees bought the Cliff Road property in 1934 for ??300, and designed the Italianate villa-style house as his family home with his studio built into the sandstone foundations behind an arched entry.

Rees and his wife Marjory remained there until 1986 when they moved to Tasmania. Marjory died soon after and Lloyd died two years later, leaving his Sydney home to his son Alan.

Jonathon Rees said the family has mixed feelings about selling the house. “We just hope it goes to someone who appreciates it,” he said.

McGrath selling agent Brent Courtney said the property can not be knocked over given it is registered for its historic significance with Lane Cove Council, but has potential to be extended with approval.

Courtney has set a guide of $2.2 million ahead of the December 2 auction. Related: Denis O’Neil joins the who’s who of VaucluseRelated: Maitland’s historic Caroline Chisholm cottage listedRelated: Wanderers’ Paul Lederer scores in Point Piper

Dr Paula Dredge, head of paintings conservation at the Art Gallery of NSW, said once the contents from the studio are analysed and catalogued they are expected to become part of their Artists Materials Archive in the conservation department to be referenced alongside the original materials of other great artists such as Sir Sidney Nolan and Brett Whiteley.

Northwood has long been known for its many artist locals, among them John Santry, George Lawrence and Roland Wakelin, who along with Rees were known as the Northwood Group of painters. Santry’s sketch club in his Northwood home was another feature of the local arts community, and was frequented by a young Brett Whiteley who lived in the suburb next door, Longueville.


25/04/2020 0

Queensland Country upset Vikings in NRC grand final

Queensland Country completed its fairytale season with a come-from-behind 42-28 victory against the Canberra Vikings to win their first National Rugby Championship on Saturday night.
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Country won just five games in their first three seasons but under the tutelage of newly appointed Queensland Reds coach Brad Thorn they pulled off a remarkable turnaround to lift the trophy.

It was a zero-to-hero effort from Country skipper and recent Wallabies revelation Duncan Paia’aua who was sin-binned in the 66th-minute, before coming back on to score the match-winner.

The scores were locked at 28-28 with seven minutes to play when tempers boiled over and a scuffle broke out on half way.

It proved a title-deciding moment as the ensuing penalty went to Country and set up the Queenslanders match-winning try through Paia’aua in the 76th-minute.

Thorn described the victory as the best of his young coaching career and praised the gutsy effort from his men who had been written off at the start of the season.

“To win this competition from the bottom of the ladder… I couldn’t be prouder of them and it wasn’t the rugby I was proud of it was what was under their chest and their mindset,” Thorn said.

“You can have all the game plans in the world but it doesn’t mean anything unless you’ve got the mindset and to come back from two tries down, a man down and away from home, you couldn’t write a better script.

“I was lucky to be part of some stuff in my playing career but it’s a different ball game as a coach… it’s just an incredible feeling, I’m so proud of the boys.”

It marked a devastating finish for the minor premiers and Vikings’ coach Tim Sampson said there were still plenty of positives to take from a great season.

“It’s a tough pill to swallow… there were some key moments in that second half and some areas in our game where we dropped off from where we’ve been really strong all tournament,” Sampson said.

“The achievement to contest a grand final, looking back they’re a pretty special group of young men, and I hope they realise how hard it is to get to a grand final to start with and they should be proud.

“They say you’ve got to lose one to win one but unfortunately we’ve lost two now and it’s a long time between drinks until 2018 season but hopefully we’re up there and I’ll back the boys to come back stronger.”

It was an instant classic in the capital as the Vikings showed great resilience early to see off an onslaught of attack, before running in three tries of their own to hold a 21-7 half-time lead.

The Vikings couldn’t repeat their defensive heroics in the second stanza as Country piled on three tries in the first 15 minutes after the break to hold a 28-21 lead.

The game was turned on its head when Paia’aua was yellow carded for a high tackle and the Vikings struck immediately to lock the scores up on 68 minutes.

Canberra couldn’t find the killer blow as the Country skipper returned to the field to break Vikings hearts late, before Filipo Daugunu completed his hat-trick in the dying minutes.

AT A GLANCE:

Queensland Country 42 (Tuttle, Paia’aua 2, Daugunu 3 tries; Tuttle 6 cons) beat Canberra Vikings 28 (Dargaville, Lloyd, Valetini, Taliauli tries; Hawera 4 cons)


25/04/2020 0

The real taste of a suburb: Local stalwarts go back to the future

Hayden, owner of Rhubarb Rhubarb Organics, poses for a photo in his shop ahead of Preston Market opening on Sundays for the first time this weekend. Preston, Melbourne. November 10th 2017. Photo: Daniel Pockett Hayden, owner of Rhubarb Rhubarb Organics, poses for a photo in his shop ahead of Preston Market opening on Sundays for the first time this weekend. Preston, Melbourne. November 10th 2017. Photo: Daniel PockettPhotos of young fruit-peddlers dancing about in their aprons, perfectly cut kiwi fruit and more super foods than you could find in a hipster’s hemp shopping bag adorn the Instagram account of Rhubarb Rhubarb Organics.
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Haydn Chiron and his wife Sue Sheehan have run the Preston Market produce store for the past 16 years, but they only got onto social media about a year ago.

“It’s felt like we’ve really built a community,” Mr Chiron says. “It’s really open and really lovely – it’s another way of connecting that we’ve never had before.”

Preston Market will this week have its first day of Sunday trade in its 45-year history, Queen Victoria Market is revamping its facilities in 2018 and Prahran Market has launched new foodie-friendly restaurant and bar Wilson and Market in the past year.

Smaller artists and farmers markets are continuing to thrive, popping up every week or so in town halls, community centres and on cordoned-off streets.

Markets, it seems, are becoming cooler and more convenient than ever.

Colin McLeod, professor at the University of Melbourne’s business school spoke at the recent World Union of Wholesale Markets Congress held in Melbourne. He says despite the availability and convenience of online shopping, Generation Z ??? those born from 1995 ??? crave face-to-face interaction more than any other generation.

“They are a generation that puts a very high premium on things like sustainability and authenticity – and I think talking to people gives you a much better sense of being able to judge that than reading something online,” Professor McLeod says.

Creators Market co-founder Megan Luscombe says she’s noticed that the younger crowd at the monthly market, which travels between Prahran, Ballarat, Bendigo and the Bellarine and Mornington Peninsulas, are particularly conscious about where and how products are made.

“They’re really heavily committed to social media, but they get a really massive kick out of coming to our markets and meeting the stallholders,” Ms Luscombe says.

Mr Chiron says along with starting Instagram and Facebook accounts, he’s gotten onto to new trends in health and wellbeing that appeal to younger people, and has started offering workshops such as Kombucha-making. A post shared by Rhubarb Rhubarb Organics (@rhubarbrhubarborganics) on Sep 5, 2017 at 7:25pm PDTA post shared by Queen Victoria Market (@vicmarket) on Jun 9, 2017 at 5:18pm PDT


25/04/2020 0

Victory remain winless after Roar stalemate

Melbourne Victory and Brisbane Roar both remain winless after a a 1-1 draw at Etihad Stadium on Saturday night, a result that leaves both clubs in the lower reaches of the A-League table.
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A striker can do almost nothing for 90 minutes, but if he scores the only goal of the game, then he has done his job.

Victory striker Besart Berisha had been a largely peripheral figure against his former club until his strike 11 minutes from time looked as though it would give Victory their first win of the season.

Teenager Christian Theoharous, just off the bench, played the ball across to Victory’s Dutch winger Leroy George, who found Berisha in enough space for the feisty frontman to thump the ball past Roar goalkeeper Jamie Young.

But Victory’s jubiliation was short-lived, as Brisbane were back on level terms four minutes later when Brett Holman, another substitute, swept in Jack Hingert’s cross from the right to tie things up.

The deadlock means that Victory’s worst start to a season continues. Never before have they gone six matches without a win to kick off a campaign, and they are now 10 points behind league leaders Newcastle, who went top of the table with their win in Adelaide earlier on Saturday.

Fans who needed their fix of tension and excitement probably got a sufficient hit early in the day as they sweated through the Socceroos’ performance in Honduras – which was just as well for those who fronted up in time for the opening exchanges of this game when not a lot was going on.

Berisha, back from suspension, struggled to get involved in the early stages.

As has been the case so far this season, Victory’s two newest signings, defender Rhys Williams and George, looked their two most impressive players.

Williams has the class and ability to force his way into World Cup calculations should his body, which so often lets him down, hold up through the rigours of a full A-League season, provided make it to the finals by seeing off Honduras on Wednesday night.

George, who played for the Netherlands at junior level, has consistently looked one of Victory’s most dangerous options in the five games in which he has been involved, either attacking directly or setting up chances for his teammates with his excellent delivery from set pieces.

For Brisbane, equally anxious to kick-start their season, coach John Aloisi was forced to make an instantaneous reshuffle as former Victory winger Fahid Ben Khalfallah sustained an injury in the warm-up.

The ex-Socceroo striker had to draft in Nicholas D’Agostino for an earlier introduction from the bench than he would have preferred.

It wasn’t until the 20th minute that the game started to show some semblance of life, George’s corner from the right causing chaos in the Roar penalty area as Brisbane’s ex-Italy striker Massimo Maccarone got his head on the ball, deflecting it towards his own goal rather than away.

His blushes were spared by Young’s sharp save.

Six minutes later Williams’ header went wide from another George set-piece before Brisbane finally drew Victory goalkeeper Lawrence Thomas into action.

Roar’s French recruit Eric Bautheac fired over a well-flighted free kick and Greek defender Avram Papadopoulos got clear of his marker to power a header that looked sure to break the deadlock, until Williams scrambled back to hook the ball away to safety.

A minute later Bautheac almost set up D’Agostino, the forward’s header forcing Thomas to dive smartly and parry away.

The second half brought more of the same.

George’s free kick on the hour skidded through to Young when a touch from one of his teammates might have brought greater reward, then with some 20 minutes remaining he linked up well on the right with Argentine midfielder Matias Sanchez before driving a shot just wide of the post.

Once more the Dutchman was denied a minute later when he cut in well from the left and made space for himself only for Young to produce a fine diving save from his deflected shot.

It looked headed for a stalemate, and that’s how it turned out thanks to the two late goals.


25/04/2020 0

‘Recipe for disaster’: Gaping loophole exposed after woman rips up carpet

Apartment-living could descend into chaos if a gaping loophole just revealed in the new strata legislation isn’t plugged as a matter of urgency, it’s been claimed.
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Owners who took action at the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) against a resident who broke the bylaws by ripping up her carpet and using the concrete slab as noisy flooring discovered, to their horror, that it could not, under current rules, impose a fine on her.

“This is a no-brainer, it seems to me,” said Ashley Douglas, the chairman of the 20-storey, 107-unit block in Pyrmont at the centre of the dispute, which ended up spending $20,000 on legal fees trying to bring the renegade owner to account.

“It’s a ridiculous position under the new legislation that monetary penalties can’t be imposed by NCAT when bylaws are broken. So many apartments are now being built in Sydney and with so many more being built, it’s going to be impossible to enforce bylaws.

“Apartment living is going to become a hell of a lot worse.”

Before the new strata legislation was enacted on November 30, 2016, owners corporations could go to NCAT to show a bylaw had been breached or an order to comply ignored, and have a fine imposed on the transgressor.

But this latest case exposed that, under the new regime, NCAT doesn’t have the power to impose a monetary penalty – effectively meaning there’s little incentive for an offender to make amends, or not to offend in the first place.

“It’s a flaw that seems to have been overlooked and, if an order from NCAT for someone to repair their breach is ignored, what next?” said strata lawyer Adrian Mueller of J.S. Mueller & Co. “I think it’s an oversight and it needs to be fixed by Parliament. Related: NSW tribunal overturns Airbnb bylawRelated: Eight most important strata law changesRelated: NSW residents are strata lab rats

“In the current position, it might sometimes be cheaper for someone to ignore an order than to comply with it. For instance, if someone is short-term letting in defiance of bylaws and NCAT orders them to stop, because a penalty can’t be enforced against them, they can just carry on making money. This is a real problem.”

A spokesperson for Fair Trading said it would not be possible to comment without studying the issue in more detail.

Some people in the industry were already aware of this issue but had hoped it would not come to light, knowing it could lead to a “disastrous” free-for-all for those apartment-owners who decide to break bylaws on all manner of issues, like parking, pets, floor coverings and short-term letting.

Karen Stiles, executive officer of the apartment owners’ peak body the Owners Corporation Network (OCN), said, “This is a recipe for disaster, potentially for chaos for apartment residents.

“Bylaws are there for a reason, for the orderly working of an apartment building and to make sure all residents can peacefully enjoy their homes. But it makes a nonsense of them if a breach can be proved and then NCAT can’t impose a fine on the wrong-doer when they ignore orders to comply.

“There is no longer a real deterrent for some anti-social person not to break bylaws.”

The case that brought the missing link to light involved an owner who took up floor coverings and polished the concrete beneath them to use as her flooring against the bylaws of her block in November 2015. In April last year, the owners corporation applied for an order to require her to comply with the bylaw, which was granted in June 2016.

After repeated requests, she still did nothing, so in May this year the owners applied to NCAT for an order that she pay a fine for breaching the order. In the meantime, however, the new legislation had come into effect and NCAT said it no longer had the power to impose a pecuniary penalty, and that owners corporations no longer had the standing to apply. Only the Attorney-General, or someone authorised by him, now has that power.

The building’s lawyer Amanda Farmer said eventually, in this case, NCAT managed to order the lot owner to pay a $2500 fine if she doesn’t made amends by January 2018 simply because the original order was made under the old legislation.

“But under the new law, you can only make an application for a pecuniary penalty with the consent of the minister,” said Ms Farmer of Lawyers Chambers. “It’d be interesting to see how lot owners or owners corporations get that kind of order. I have no idea how you’d do that.

“We need an amending act to sort this out. I would like to see this changed. Strata committees have an obligation to act in the best interests of the owners corporation and it’s hard enough to enforce bylaws without this.

“I think there’ll be owners who see it as too hard in future and too expensive to seek penalties for people breaching bylaws. So if people want to rip up floors or take up an area of common property they’re not entitled to, they’ll be able to without fear of fines. This has the potential to be disastrous.”


25/04/2020 0

Socceroos had to learn sign language to communicate

Socceroos defender Trent Sainsbury says the players had been preparing hand signals to communicate to each other against Honduras to combat the intense noise from the fans in San Pedro Sula.
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‘s players were forced to find alternative ways to communicate to each other during the first 20 or so minutes of their 0-0 draw with Honduras at the infamous Estadio Olimpico. Most of the Socceroos had never played in front of such a hostile and loud crowd before and had been prepared for as much by the national team’s coaches and support staff.

Sainsbury said the players spent their time during the week preparing ways to send messages knowing they would likely be unable to hear one another on the field.

“We’ve been practicing sign language all week so that helped. It was obviously difficult when they were using the vuvuzelas,” Sainsbury said.

The stadium is infamous for the pressure it places on opponents due to the vibrant, loud and often aggressive atmosphere from the Honduran fans. At one point just after kick-off, the concrete stands were vibrating as 40,000 supporters started stamping their feet that created the sound of a loud drum roll that could be heard across the stadium as the floor began to shake.

Horns, drums, chants, whistles and taunts were constant two hours before kick-off inside the stadium and the surrounding precinct. Western Sydney Wanderers defender Josh Risdon was thankful the players went through the appropriate measures to prepare for the atmosphere.

“Very tough to communicate, especially at the start of the game. [It was] hard to hear yourself think at one point. It was so loud, it was tough but we knew that before we went in. We communicated before we went out there and everyone knew their roles so we didn’t have to rely on that so much,” Risdon said

The decibels dropped after the Socceroos were awarded a penalty midway through the first half, only for it to be rescinded shortly after. From then on, the home fans became slightly more nervous and whilst remaining loud and vibrant, they lacked the same hostility and intimidation.

“Maybe in the beginning it was the toughest environment I’ve played in but I think we did a really god job in quieting them down,” Socceroos’ midfielder Jackson Irvine said. “You have to ride that storm. Walking out just to come and look at the pitch, the warm up was absolutely incredible. We had to lean in and speak to each other, it was that loud.”

Risdon had never played in front of a louder or more colourful atmosphere in his career but said it wasn’t hostile, rather an experience he will cherish.

“The best atmosphere I’ve ever played in. It’s what you want to play in, World Cup qualifiers to get through to a World Cup, in a different country, in circumstances like that, it’s what you play for and dreamt of as a kid. I tried to soak up every moment. Really enjoyable,” Risdon said.


25/04/2020 0

Sydney paparazzo, 20, given second airline ban

After being banned from flying with Virgin , Qantas has issued 20-year-old paparazzo Jayden Seyfarth with a “no-fly notification until further notice” while he is being investigated by the n Federal Police.
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Seyfarth was reported to the AFP by Virgin after he demonstrated serious security flaws in the airline’s system and posted them to his Instagram.

It all started two weeks ago, when he printed The Bachelorette Sophie Monk and her boyfriend Stu Laundy’s tickets to Melbourne, only needing their names and destination, at a self-service kiosk. He was then able to use their tickets to scan himself into the Virgin lounge to have “some lunch” and also quiz the reality television stars about their relationship at a time when the public deemed it fake.

Following the highly publicised incident in which he appeared on the front page of a Sunday tabloid labelled as a “serial pest”, Virgin sent Seyfarth a letter explaining that as a result of his “behaviour” he would be denied carriage commencing on October 30, 2017.

However, he left Virgin red-faced yet again when he used the airline unhindered to get to Melbourne on October 5 to photograph racegoers, including Paris Jackson.

“I didn’t know I was banned because I only received the letter on October 6 as they sent it to the wrong address,” Seyfarth explained to Fairfax Media.

Otherwise he said he would not have flown with the airline: “I’m not that dumb.”

Seyfarth has highlighted how easy it would be for criminals and fugitives to board flights under false names or swap tickets with other passengers.

When Fairfax Media asked Virgin how Seyfarth was able to fly almost a week after they placed a ban on him, why tickets were not password protected and why IDs were not checked, a spokesperson said: “Virgin cannot comment on individual passengers or security matters and this particular matter is now in the hands of the n Federal Police.”

While the airline staff are not impressed by the young pap, Virgin Group boss Richard Branson was able to see the funny side when Seyfarth pulled the same trick on him.

During Branson’s visit to Sydney on September 12, 2015, Seyfarth printed out the billionaire’s business class ticket and then had Branson sign it.

“He was like ‘How did you get this?’ Seyfarth said.

Right now Seyfarth will have to make do with Tigerair to get about.

“The poor people’s airline where there is certainly no lounge,” he laughed.


25/04/2020 0

Josh Reynolds to bring ‘family club’ values to Tigers

Josh Reynolds is pictured at Concord Oval in his new West Tigers jersey on 10 November, 2017. Photo: Brook MitchellHe may have left the “family club”, but Josh Reynolds wants to bring those same values to Wests Tigers.
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Reynolds, the highest-profile of the joint-venture outfit’s recruits, reported for training for the first time during the week. The former NSW five-eighth admitted it was “a little bit weird” donning the black, white and gold after being a Bulldog for so long, but is embracing the challenge of taking his game to another level.

One of Belmore’s favourite sons, Reynolds is renowned for his ability to bring his teammates together. So much so that James Graham, in an attempt to keep him at Canterbury, offered to sacrifice the pay rise he was entitled to – believed to be a six-figure amount under the new collective bargaining agreement – to retain Reynolds.

The man credited with being the social glue at Belmore wants to ensure he becomes just as tight with his new teammates.

“When I got my first bit of gear it was a little bit weird, it wasn’t blue and white,” Reynolds said in his first interview in Tigers colours.

“I don’t go home and say, ‘I can’t believe I’m in this’. I’m going to take it with both hands. I know I grew up in Belmore, but I want to create the same concept here. I’m doing what I love, which is playing rugby league – it’s just for a different club. It doesn’t mean I’m going to be any less passionate about who I play for. My whole family used to go for them growing up. There are ties there.

“The club is on the up with the type of players they’ve bought and bringing Ivan [Cleary] in will change the club. The fans of the Wests Tigers haven’t – this is no disrespect to the players that have played – but they haven’t seen semi-finals in a while. It would be nothing better than to come here with a few new boys and try and do that and try and create a great culture.”

Tigers fans are anxious to see the new-look Reynolds-Luke Brooks halves combination in action for the first time in their season opener against the Roosters. However, Reynolds is already allowing himself to think a little further ahead.

“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t having a little think about that game,” he said of the round 12 clash with former club Canterbury.

“The old cliche is I take it like any other game, but it’s definitely going to be weird coming up against them because I’ve played with a lot of them for a good five or six years.

“It’s going to be interesting and fun. Before will the hardest bit, but when it kicks off it will be just another game. They will probably get into me. [Laughing] I don’t get into people on the field, so I’ll just take it on the chin and walk off. While it’s going to be hard, I’ll make sure it’s fun because in 20 years, when we have a beer down the track, we’ll have a laugh about how I did something crazy or outrageous in the game.”

Reynolds described the 2017 season as a “draining year for me”, the result of a series of injuries, speculation about his future and the Bulldogs missing the finals. He was courted by Cronulla and the appeal of going to a team full of superstars held appeal. However, he was impressed by Cleary’s pitch and relished the chance to take on a greater leadership role at the Tigers.

“I feel here at the Tigers, the team comes first,” he said.

“No one is better than anyone, it doesn’t matter if you’ve played 30 Origins or you’re debuting. I think that’s a great culture and message to get across to the boys. Everyone takes that on board. Everyone takes leadership and ownership, that’s the best way to be.

“For me at the Bulldogs, I felt I was a bit the same. There were so many good players around me, I just had to do my job. I wanted to step out of my comfort zone. Maybe it’s because I’m getting on in footy, I’m 28 years old, and I definitely want to become an influence in the team, a bit of a leader.”

The man affectionately dubbed “Grub” is the first to concede he isn’t the silkiest player. His greatest strengths are his energy and passion, qualities that help bring his teammates closer off the field. The Bulldogs junior was stunned by Graham’s gesture and wants to be a uniting force at Concord.

“Away from the game, that’s the most humbling thing, the most amazing thing that anyone has ever done,” Reynolds said of Graham.

“I never knew about it, that was the best thing. Even when we had a couple of beers lately, he didn’t mention it. It’s something he wanted to do. It’s weird, from the outside looking in at a lot of clubs, a lot of players look at it as just a job. That’s fine, that’s the way they do it. But for me it’s about creating friendships because when footy is done you don’t come to training every day. So you don’t see those mates every day. It’s about creating [lasting] friendships.

“That’s what I was like at the Dogs. It didn’t mind to me if I had to see the boys out west or go out to Cronulla, it’s what I like doing. I’ve always been like that, I like being around good people and creating friendships. I want to do that at the Tigers. They have accepted me so well. Honestly, it feels like I’ve been here for a couple of years already in two days. Not the footy stuff, just being able to muck around with a few of the boys.”

While it may take time to get used to the sight of Reynolds in a Tigers jersey, his family has history with the club.

“My grandparents lived in Annandale,” he said.

“My mum grew up there before they moved to Belmore. My cousins were all Tigers fans before I started playing for the Dogs. So now they have to dust off their old jerseys and get them out at Leichhardt Oval.”


25/04/2020 0