About the Lunchers

Richard Farmer has been ranked in Australia’s Top Ten lunchers since the mid-60s. He has known success, and how to engineer it, since the day he fixed the election for captain of his primary school cricket team in a Hobart primary school in 1953. A writer and journalist, columnist, speaker (after-dinner speaker, during-dinner speaker, and before-dinner speaker), lobbyist, activist, visionary, political strategist, restaurateur, wine merchant, footy lover, punter, bookmaker, golf analyst, dog walker, and story-teller, he is wizened, worldly, suspicious, guarded, cynical, irreverent, pragmatic, and self-interested. He was always going to do well in Canberra where for half a century he has been a servant of the common good. He is a man of principle, never wavering in his commitment to his belief that all philosophy is situational. These days he writes Chunky Bits for Crikey. He is at that time of his life where he has earned the right to wear tracky-dacks (high) to lunch. He likes red wine – particularly Rolf Binder’s Barossa Bull’s Blood and David Farmer’s Goat Square Barossa Valley Shiraz Grenache Mataro – and red meat, but will yield to a restorative Sunday morning yum cha washed down with a Pewsey Vale Riesling. He is the Victor Trumper of lunchers.

John Harms dreams of being ranked in Australia’s Top Ten. Just as he was knocking on the door (after a series of long lunches in and around the pubs of Fitzroy, Melbourne) in 2007, his first child appeared. After moving to Canberra in 2009, he thrust his name before the selectors again when he fell into bad company at the National Press Club. He is a writer, columnist, essayist, publisher, editor, broadcaster, historian, golfer, teacher, wannabe Catholic and good-honest luncher. Despite all this he is utterly and completely unemployable. From a long line of clergymen, he is an innocent: idealistic, wide-eyed, naïve, gullible, impressionable, and dim. He believes in community as an end in itself, and yearns for the days of barter and the parish. He once ran a horse syndicate called SAMRA – the Salvador Allende Racing Alliance – to show how socialism could work in horse-racing. He believes all men should enjoy the inalienable right to get around in Dunlop Volleys. He eschews all designer beer, likes eye fillet, potato cakes, anything crumbed, Aubigny Lutheran Ladies Guild cream puffs, and Rockford Basket Press. These days he lives in Melbourne again, but, when duty calls, will wear the white shorts insofar as lunch is concerned. The unkind refer to him as the Ewen Chatfield of lunchers. He prefers to be considered the Phil Carlson.