As a CSIRO marine scientist examined a tragic creature, a seven-armed octopus discovered in a load of baloney by an abalone diver just off Dunder Heads, he mused, “Could this be the discovery of a new species, a heptopus, or has this tragic met with foul play?”
Scientist: You appear to be an octopus short of an arm.
Creature: I will admit that I am akin to a sandwich short of a picnic, a can short of a slab and a village short of an idiot when I’m out of town. Yes, I accept that I am an opposition leader short of a policy platform. But, but, but I am not willing to accept that I am an octopus short of an arm.
Scientist: So you are a stupid opposition leader with no policies and you are in a in a state of denial.
Creature: Yes, I’ll go along with that. Just call me Bill.
Scientist: OK Bill, so you agree you are in a state of denial.
Bill: Yes, I will not deny that I am in denial. I deny that I am short of an arm.
Scientist: Stupid with no policies hey? Little wonder the media is having a field day with you.
Bill: Yes, I’m dumber than a bag of hammers and as sharp as a bowling ball. In fact, the press reckon I’m as exciting as drying paint, all froth and no beer, and couldn’t fight my way out of a wet paper bag. And they are right.
Scientist: So, you are a dumb, slow-witted, boring, weak opposition leader with no substance, no self-esteem, let alone policies. You are deeply flawed.
Bill: Yes, I’ll go along with that. But I am not an octopus short of an arm.
Scientist: Why are you so obsessed with this missing arm?
Bill: What missing arm? Listen here! I have always been one to go along with things, to drift with the changing tides popular opinion, to be a consensus cephalopod, to be a majority mollusc. Remember how I got rid of Rudd and Gillard? I went with the flow of Labor’s moods. I’m a numbers octopus. Can you imagine how a numbers octopus would look with only seven arms? I must have eight arms. I cannot afford to look ridiculous.
Scientist: You are incapable of facing up to reality. You are ridiculous.
Bill: And you, a CSIRO scientist are talking to an octopus. Don’t call me ridiculous!