Happy Australia Day! You know you're Australian if......

I know it's a day late but happy belated Australia Day.  I found this on someone else's blog and couldn't help but laugh. It certainly coinjures up images that wouldn't apply to all Australian's by a long shot, but it's still worth sharing with you all. 

You know you're Australian if....

* You believe that stubbies can be either drunk or worn.

* You're liable to burst out laughing whenever you hear of Americans "rooting" for something.

* You pronounce Melbourne as 'Mel-bin'. You believe the 'L' in the word 'Australia' is optional.

* You can translate: 'Dazza and Shazza played Acca Dacca on the way to Maccas.'

* You believe it makes perfect sense for a nation to decorate its highways with large fibreglass bananas, prawns and sheep.

* You think 'Woolloomooloo' is a perfectly reasonable name for a place.

* You're secretly proud of our killer wildlife.

* You believe it makes sense for a country to have a $1 coin that's twice as big as its $2 coin.

* You understand that 'Wagga Wagga' can be abbreviated to 'Wagga' but 'Woy Woy' can't be called 'Woy'.

* You believe that cooked-down axle grease makes a good breakfast spread. You've also squeezed it through Vita Wheats to make little Vegemite worms.

* You believe all famous Kiwis are actually Australian, until they stuff up, at which point they again become Kiwis.

* Beetroot with your Hamburger... Of course.

* You believe that the confectionery known as the Wagon Wheel has become smaller with every passing year.

* You believe that the more you shorten someone's name the more you like them.

* You understand that 'excuse me' can sound rude, While 'scuse me' is always polite.

* You know what it's like to swallow a fly, on occasion via your nose.

* You know it's not summer until the steering wheel is too hot to handle and a seat belt buckle becomes a pretty good branding iron.

* Your biggest family argument over the summer concerned the rules for beach cricket.

* You shake your head in horror when companies try to market what they call 'Anzac cookies'.

* You still think of Kylie as 'that girl off Neighbours'.

* When working on a bar, you understand male customers will feel the need to offer an excuse whenever they order low-alcohol beer.

* You know how to abbreviate every word, all of which usually end in -o: arvo, combo, garbo, kero, metho, milko, muso, rego, servo, smoko, speedo, righto, goodo etc.

* You know that there is a universal place called "woop woop" located in the middle of nowhere...no matter where you actually are. *

* You know that none of us actually drink Fosters beer, because it tastes like shit. But we let the world think we do. Because we can.

* You have some time in your life slept with Aeroguard on in the summer. Maybe even as perfume.

* You've only ever used the words - tops, ripper, sick, mad, rad, sweet - to mean good. And then you place 'bloody' in front of it when you REALLY mean it.

* You know that the barbecue is a political arena; the person holding the tongs is always the boss and usually a man. And the women make the Salad. (sad, but true in my experience)

* You say 'no worries' quite often, whether you realise it or not.

* You understand what no wucking furries means.

* You've drank your tea/coffee/milo through a Tim Tam.

* You own a Bond's chesty. In several different colours.

* You know that roo meat tastes pretty good, But not as good as barra. Or a meat pie.

* You know that some people pronounce Australia like "Straya" and that's ok.

All questions welcome if you need something explained!! 

Review: The Midwich Cuckoos by John Wyndham

John Wyndham's The Midwich Cuckoos is another of his eery science fiction classics with universally significant themes.
The rural village of Midwich in country England was little known until "Dayout". The entire town becomes enclosed in an invisible dome. Everyone inside the dome falls asleep, and no one outside it can enter or determine what is happening. Just as inexplicably, the dome is soon lifted and the inhabitants come to.

Everything seems to go back to normal fairly quickly, but one by one each of the women of child bearing age and ability find themselves pregnant. Each bears a child, but these children are not what they seem. It soon becomes clear to the villagers that the Children have an ability to make people do their bidding, as well as a very special connection between each other. Eventually the town must make a choice, do they save themselves or do they save the world?

There was much to love about this book, although I found it somewhat of an anticlimax compared to his other books.

I think the reason for this is that the action that is so integral to his other novels takes a back seat to Wyndham's own philosophising on matters such as evolution, race, religion and justice.

The story of The Midwich Cuckoos provides the perfect mechanism for exploring these fascinating issues. Are the Children really men or some other species? If they are some other species, is it murder to kill them? Is it murder if they kill people in the village? How do the laws of one species govern the behaviour of another? Is justice about getting even or is there something more to it? If God created all species, did he intend that mankind's supremacy on earth come to an end when he created the Children, is it simply a part of evolution?

Then there is the more over arching question of collectivism vs individualism - should mankind as a whole be prioritised over the lives of some individuals that comprise mankind? How can such decisions be made and by who?

I am not quite sure where to place this in my thinking of the book, but it did occur to me that what Zellaby does at the end of the book reflects to a certain extent what Jesus Christ is said to have done for mankind. Going hand in hand with the question of individualism v collectivism is this idea of self sacrifice and what role it plays/should play in our lives. How far would be go for others and in what circumstances? This is something that is worth further thought, especially in conjunction with Wyndham's (through his characters) reflections on religion throughout the book. It's something I will reflect more on during a second reading of the book.

There were so many fascinating questions explored, but I felt at times as though Wyndham was pushing his own agenda and views on me through the character of Zellaby, who does most of the philosophising in the book. It was somewhat frustrating, especially when it was mixed with what I consider old-fashioned ideas about religion and more particularly female gender roles.

Don't get me wrong, I loved this book. It was tense when it needed to be; there was danger and mystery. The premise of the story was unique and thought provoking. It only needed a little more action and a little more talk to make it one of my favourites.

6.5 / 8
Really enjoyable and well written. I recommend that you buy it. 

How did you find this one compared to his other books? Does it bother you when you feel like the author is more concerned with getting a message across than getting on with the story? I would also love to know what people thought of the movie adaptations if you have seen them.