Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Trivial History August 19

Off to the State Library to do some research. Shall be dragging Feral Beast along to teach him how to search the collections and databases...and because his eyes are a bit younger, and work better, than mine.

The weird things that happened in our street -
When I was about 9 a young family of both parents and a son moved into a rental house 3 doors down from us. The son was in the grade below mine so we didn't have much in common but the parents were friendly enough.
In Winter I seemed to be running late for school a lot but as Mum and I passed the neighbours' house the father would always offer us a lift with his son, which we gladly accepted.
Time wore on and they'd been living there for about 18 months or so, us exchanging pleasantries with them, Chrissy cards, Mum minding the son on the odd occasion; normal stuff.
Then late one afternoon the street was cordoned off with police cars, helicopter buzzing over-head, everyone ordered to stay indoors by a copper on a loud-hailer.
Turns out the nice, cheerful father was the number one most wanted criminal, wanted for armed robbery, and had been evading police for 3 years....by living within 5 mins walk of the nearest police station.

1775 Just for something completely different, earwigs by the bucket-load showered down on the good folk of Stroud, England.

Place Name Origin-
Apsley Strait in the Northern Territory got it's moniker after the usual spot of brown-nosing those who held the purse strings back in England; Captain King named it in 1818 after Apsley, the Earl of Bathurst and the Secretary of State of the Colonies.
Tissue, Captain King...?

1840 Fashions were crook in Sydney and not a chippie was to be had in Melbourne when the tailors in NSW went on strike and the carpenters in Victoria joined them in a bid for higher wages.

Oz Slanguage-
Booze bus = nickname for the large police vehicle used to randomly breathalyse drivers.

1840 But the French settlers had neither seamstress nor chippie on hand when they parked their prow and found their land legs at Akaroa, NZ.

The very first world sculling champion was an Aussie, Edward Trickett, in 1876.

1859 Trying to organise business was easier when a Chamber of Commerce was established at Lyttelton, NZ.

When the Australian champion Broom Thrower, Ann Humphrey, decided to change tools, she picked up the axe in the annual axe-tossing contest at Ulong (NSW) and won the women's title after throwing a 2.75 kg axe 22.36 metres.

1907 The Rabbit Proof Fence was finally completed on this day, stopping those damn mobile pie-fillers in their tracks.
But the Great Wall of China is a bit prettier.

Aussie Love of Pubs-
Highlander Lane - that runs between Flinders St and Flinders Lane - isn't named after one too many wee drams but after the Royal Highlander Hotel that saw many a Scotsman  darken its doorstep in Flinders Street.

1975 The cricket test match between England and Australia was called off when more than a divet was disturbed from the pitch at Headingley; supporters of George Davis had dug it up completely.
Yep, that'll pretty much do it.


  1. "Turns out the nice, cheerful father was the number one most wanted criminal..."

    Osama bin Laden was living down your street?

  2. Wow, you ahve lived a colourful life there young Jayne

  3. I thought booze bus was a name given to young guys mom's minivan when borrowed on a Saturday night.

  4. lol to your neighbour - the best kind, no doubt!!

    I read once that the first English tour match to Australia only came close to being even when we doubled the Aussie field and plied all the poms with a great deal of alcohol.

  5. Wow about the neighbor story!!!

    My sister had something like that happen. My parents hired some guy to help her drive her car back from college. I guess they knew someone who knew him????

    Then later he was charged with murder. I'm not sure if the murder happened before or after he drove with my sister.

  6. Colourful alright!

    Well, I guess as long as he didn't rob you ;)

    And aren't the best hiding spots always in plain sight?

  7. He wasn't that Brian :P

    If the weird and wonderful happened, it was in our street, WS, lol.

    There is that too, Evyl lol.

    LOL not enough booze, Jeanie?

    Scary, Dina!

    Nope, wouldn't have thought he could even hurt a fly, Bettina...just shows how good everyone's judgement was lol.

  8. Too funny about the neighbours.