Newcastle Herald Short Takes: Monday, October 17, 2016

TO John William Hill (Short Takes, 14/10): There is a mysterious creature lurking in most shopping strips. A happy-go-lucky type who is always welcoming and willing to provide an ancient art called customer service. They also have a strange habit of keeping offal in the coolroom, where this creature spends most of its life. May I suggest you seek out this species in their natural habitat. They are called butchers and, thanks to the supermarkets, are critically endangered.

Steve Barnett, Fingal Bay

RECENTLY I was a patient at John Hunter Hospital because of a mild stroke. From the moment I arrived at the emergency department till the moment I was discharged from the neurology ward I received nothing but care and treatment of the highest order. The staff, from the porters to the head of neurology were polite, friendly and very competent and spared no effort in making my short stay tolerable. I must also include the ambulance paramedics who could not have been more caring while making an initial assessment of my condition. My sincere thanks to you all.

Brian Fitzgerald, Warners Bay

OUR Lord Mayor says the last thing she wants is to create pockets and ghettos on the old rail site (‘Council votes to back rezoning of corridor’, Herald, 14/10), yet if they intend to include affordable housing in the development plans they may end up with those very same things.

Barry Reed, Islington

SO glad I live in Lake Macquarie. Do the bogans, yobbos, developers, Sydney politicians and the apathetic silent majority of Novocastrians realise that as soon as the first building is constructed on the old rail line to Newcastle’s historic rail station, the future potential for a transport corridor becomes extinct, and that means forever.

Sophia Campbell, Dudley

OK BAIRDY, you realised you were wrong about the dish-lickers, how about having another think about Newcastle rail? Almost two years since truncation, we still have absolutely nothing.

Darryl Horne, Waratah

THE greyhound industry has had decades to clean itself up. It did nothing as it was not under pressure to do so. Mike Baird reacted with horror to the cruelty he witnessed, and animal advocates were extremely pleased when the Premier acted decisively to close down the industry. Now, surprise surprise, politics is the name of the game, as minor parties and individuals seek to drag Mike Baird down. I say – what about the dogs? Don't you care about the original issue, which was animal cruelty on a grand scale?

Olga Parkes, New Lambton Heights

THE POLLS

DID 2013 change your views on Hunter bushfire risks?

Yes 53.6%, No 46.4%

HAVE you had a snake in your yard this year?

Yes 31%, No 69%

HAS Martin Lee shown his long-term commitment to Newcastle?

Yes 86%, No 14%

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