Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Meeting a famous Australian

I was having dinner in the all-you-eat restaurant at the Sunshine Plaza.

I went up and got Vietnamese pork and roast spuds and gravy.

I could feel this bloke eyeing me from the next table, out of the corner of my eye. Suddenly he leans over and takes a handful of potatoes off my plate and transfers them to his and starts eating them.

'Hey' I said 'What's all this about buddy?'

I looked over at him. He seemed familiar.

'Don't I know you from somewhere?'

'Hi,' he replied. 'I'm Rhyce Shaw. I play for the Collingwood Magpies. I'm the son of former captain Ray Shaw, and brother of Heath Shaw. I'm also the nephew of premiership captain and Norm Smith Medallist, Tony Shaw and former Collingwood player Neville Shaw. My cousin, Brayden (son of Tony) was drafted to Collingwood, but failed to play a game before being delisted in 2005.

'Pleased to meet you,' he said, extending his hand.

I shook his hand warily and said, 'Why did you steal my spuds Rhyce? You've knocked half of them off my plate and spilt my gravy all over the table.'

'Sorry about that,' he said, eyeing the floor. 'I guess I was just hungry.'

'Rhyce mate, it's all you can eat! You've got your own plate! Didn't you pay your $10 at the door?'

'Yeah I did' said Rhyce. 'But you got the last of the roast spuds at the buffet table. And when I asked the waitress, she said it would be 10 minutes before the kitchen cooked some more.'

'Christ mate! Where's your self-control?' I spluttered. 'You could have had chips instead!'

Rhyce smiled shyly, still looking at the floor.

'Don't like chips, only roasties' he said quietly, shuffling his feet.

'Alright Rhyce, you have the roasties,' I sighed. 'And I'll have the chips.'

I got up and filled my plate.

When I returned, he'd gone to a different part of the restaurant. It looked like he'd stolen a piece of cheesecake off a little girl's plate and she was crying. Her dad was yelling at Rhyce and he was staring at the floor.

Later, I saw him put about $50 into one of those glass-fronted machines with the grabber arms, he was trying to win a stuffed Tasmanian Devil toy.

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