Saturday, March 1, 2008

Trivial History March 1

White Rabbits, white rabbits, white rabbits!
Yeah, the mad old bat really is as mad as a March hare mrgreen

Tis the first day of Autumn and St David's Day, the patron saint of wave those leeks and daffs with vigor!
The first day of each season in Or-stray-lia were actually determined by the day the Brits were issued with new uniforms to replace the unwashed rags they'd been leaping about the outback in for the previous 3 months.

It's also Labour Day in Westralia and Beer Day in Iceland....gee,such a hard choice to make on holiday destinations!

1845 Taswegians everywhere busted open their mattresses to deposit their pennies in the Hobart Savings Bank on its first day of business.

In 1840 bushrangers picked on the wrong woman. Isabella Kelly freed herself from the wheel of a dray the curs had tied her to after they pinched her savings, chased after the mongrels with a pistol, shot one in the shoulder after a 5 mile hike through the bush and forced the others to hand over all the money they had on them. I wonder why she was known as the Iron Woman of the Manning River district?!

1864 Bush blocks in the Northern Territory were going for a bargain in London and Adelaide today.

1869 Although they claimed it was Monday-itis, thousands of pigeons went hungry as the city teemed with people busting a garter belt to spy the Duke of Edinburgh on his flying visit.

Ghost Spot-
On the east coast of Tassie is a house in Swansea in which a grey lady is often sighted, walking through each room as if to check on the inhabitants.

1919 The extraordinary newspaper Smith's Weekly hit the newstands for the first time and left many speechless, through fury and tears of laughter, with its editorials and cartoons like THIS.

1954 Adelaide was rockin' and rollin', not to music but to the earthquake that topped the Richter Scale at 5.4

Great Aunt Hepzibah's Handy Hints-
With the cooling of the weather it's time to get the blankets/doonas/rugs out of storage and airing on the line for the coming Winter. It's also a good time to air pillows and flip matresses over, too.

1961 Echuca was celebrating as it was no longer a village but had graduated into a City.

1975 And life was never the same again after colour TV was officially introduced into lounge rooms everywhere. ABC-TV's starring show The Aunty Jack Show was the first full show in bright technicolour.

Great Uncle Rupert's Ripper Refreshments-
Colonial Tea Punch.
In a saucepan mix 1/3 cup of honey, 1 lemon finely chopped, 500 mls rum, 8 cups of hot black tea, 12 oz brandy and 500 mls lemon juice, mix until the honey is dissolved. Allow to cool before pouring into a large punch bowl half filled with ice cubes.
*Great Uncle Rupert advocates responsible service of alcohol and drinking in moderation.

1975 Our Livvy aka Olivia Newton-John (another Brit for you Brian) won the Grammy for Record of The Year for I Honestly Love You, a song many school choirs have butchered in now-banned school nativity plays.

1990 Perhaps the reason behind a low recruitment rate everywhere, the Royal NZ Navy were the last to put the kybosh on the daily ration of rum. *sob*

Grandma Mehitabel's Menu-
Twisted Hair.
Into a warm saucepan drop 4 tablespoons of butter and make sure it coats the saucepan all over.
Add 700 gms golden syrup, 350 gms brown sugar and 3 tablespoons of vinegar. Stir all the while until the sugar is dissolved, then boil without stirring until it begin to create threads.
Drop a tiny amount into a cup of cold water; if it becomes a hard ball the mixture is ready.
Add 2 teaspoons of baking soda to the saucepan and stir while it is foaming, then pour onto a buttered ceramic dinner plate.
Allow to cool a little then start lifting the edges and turning it towards the centre; keep doing this until the colour becomes golden yellow.
Shape the toffee into curls, plaits, twists, spirals and cut into lengths with scissors.


  1. "Our Livvy aka Olivia Newton-John (another Brit for you Brian)"

    Who, by an amazing coincidence, also shares the same birthday as me, September 28th...although she's considerably older and uglier, I should add.

  2. Well done Isabella Kelly! No relation of Ned I suppose?

  3. Of course she is ! LOL
    I hear your fan club is demanding you make a come-back album Brian :P

    There's a bit of a discrepancy over this tale, apparently, sorry about that. No, she's not related to Ned at all.
    Found some great details about Isabella Kelly here -
    Might be buying the book myself!

  4. so Great Uncle Rupert, is he still kickin' or did he die of cirrhosis of the liver!?

  5. He's been pickled for so long we're not actually certain these days Kelley :P

  6. Jayne,

    My fan club (sole member Patricia Smythe-Wombat, Ward 13, Melbourne Psychiatric Unit) is currently demanding that I throw myself off a very high building so that the memorablia she's been collecting goes up in just above scrap.

  7. You must uphold the long,celebrated tradition of rock gods,Brian, by continually disappointing your fan club ;)
    At least you know your missing socks are worth a fraction more than recycled scrap lol.