Thursday, September 17, 2009

Australians all let us rejoice.. for we are late for an appointment

I failed the Australian Citizenship test. You can take a practice test on line. You need to score 75% of answers correctly. I only achieved 1 out of 5 for the last group of questions. I'm not sure if this makes me a dumb arse or I'm just not very knowledgeable about the intricate powers of our Governor General, the details of State Government constitutions and the finer points of legislative royal assent. Are they serious? Should our new migrants spend their days watching Parliament Question Time? Actually better not, they might wonder what the hell kind of people we have here. Australian Citizens need to know many things. Aside from judicial government powers perhaps a more useful approach to our Citizenship quiz should be offered. Questions like where to buy the best cup of coffee in your state? That it is not compulsory to go to an AFL game and speaking our language doesn't necessarily mean you have to talk without moving your lips (Kevin Sheedy??) Having worked with refugees I know one of the more common misunderstandings is why the western world is so obsessed with time and clocks. Some more useful questions might be if you are asked to meet a prospective employer at a certain time do you a) bump into your friend and spend the day with them instead b) think that tomorrow would be better and turn up then or c) make sure you turn up on time. In some cultures a) and b) are perfectly acceptable. And you know, maybe they are right, 'he who lives by the clock will always remain one of its hands'. I never did understand that saying!

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