BEEP! BEEP! IT'S ME.

"Begin at the beginning,and go on till you come to the end: then stop." (Lewis Carroll, 1832-1896)

Alice came to a fork in the road. "Which road do I take?" she asked."Where do you want to go?" responded the Cheshire cat."I don't know," Alice answered."Then," said the cat, "it doesn't matter."

"So long as I get somewhere," Alice added as an explanation. "Oh, you're sure to do that," said the Cat, "if you only walk long enough."

"All right," said the Cat; and this time it vanished quite slowly, beginning with the end of the tail, and ending with the grin, which remained some time after the rest of it had gone. "Well! I've often seen a cat without a grin," thought Alice; "but a grin without a cat! It's the most curious thing I ever saw in my life!"

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I am diagonally parked in a parallel universe. Like Arthur Dent from "Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy", if you do not have a Babel Fish in your ear this blog will be completely unintelligible to you and will read something like this: "boggle, google, snoggle, slurp, slurp, dingleberry to the power of 10". Fortunately, those who have had the Babel Fish inserted in their ear, will understood this blog perfectly. If you are familiar with this technology, you will know that the Babel Fish lives on brainwave radiation. It excretes energy in the form of exactly the correct brainwaves needed by its host to understand what was just said; or in this case, what was read. The Babel Fish, thanks to scientific research, reverses the problem defined by its namesake in the Tower of Babel, where a deity was supposedly inspired to confuse the human race by making them unable to understand each other.

"DIFFICILE EST SATURAM NON SCRIBERE"

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Monday, June 11, 2007

I Come From A Land Down Under Where Women Glow And Men Plunder

" I Come From A Land Down Under"

Ever wondered why Australia is called the "Land Down Under?" Ok you haven't, but maybe some people don't know. It is a colloquialism which refers to all things Australian because of Australia's position in the southern hemisphere. When one looks at a map in the most common way, Antarctica appears at the 'bottom' of the page, and north appears to be "up" and south appears to be "down." Now if cartography developed in Australia, we would have all you northern hemispheric centrists as "downunders."

According to the description listed beside the video: -

"This is some traditional Australian Dancing. This is what the convicts used 2 do in their spare time and to the same music. Ahh-Just watch it." (My suggestion is to watch out for Australians cause they are the biggest bullshit artists you are ever going to meet.)

Nevertheless, this is a video made by a couple of aussie guys doing what aussie guys go best and that is making dickheads out of themselves. :)

When you watch the video, you will see an Australian flag. On the flag you will notice the Union Jack which symbolizes that Australia was claimed as a British Colony. The Southern Cross is the constellation called surprisingly, The Southern Cross. It is comprised of 4 major stars in a kite pattern and is easily recognizable from the Southern Hemisphere. The other major symbol on the flag is The Commonwealth Star or Star of Federation which has seven points to denote the six states and the combined territories of the Commonwealth.

One of the guys is dancing around a Hills Hoist which is an Australian version of the rotary clothesline. Its distinguishing feature is a crown and pinion-winding mechanism invented by Adelaide based Lance Hill in 1945. As most places in Australia have good clothes drying weather, the Hills Hoist has been a common feature in many Australian backyards. In part of the clip a guy is also riding a unicycle and carrying a cricket bat. Cricket, if you hadn't guessed, is a National obsession for many Australians.

The song used is by Men at Work and is called "I Come From a Land Downunder"

Travelling in a fried-out kombi
On a hippie trail, head full of zombie
I met a strange lady, she made me nervous
She took me in and gave me breakfast
And she said,

"Do you come from a land down under?
Where women glow and men plunder?
Can't you hear, can't you hear the thunder?
You better run, you better take cover."

Buying bread from a man in Brussels
He was six foot four and full of muscles
I said, "Do you speak-a my language?"
He just smiled and gave me a vegemite sandwich
And he said,

"I come from a land down under
Where beer does flow and men chunder
Can't you hear, can't you hear the thunder?
You better run, you better take cover."

Lying in a den in Bombay
With a slack jaw, and not much to say
I said to the man, "Are you trying to tempt me
Because I come from the land of plenty?"
And he said,

"Oh! Do you come from a land down under? (oh yeah yeah)
Where women glow and men plunder?
Can't you hear, can't you hear the thunder?
You better run, you better take cover."

This song was used as a theme song by the crew of Australia ll when they won the America's Cup in 1983. I remember the yachting race well as it was the first time that another country broke the US's stranglehold on the race. Most of Australia sat up glued to their TV sets in the wee small hours to catch a glimpse of John Bertrand's crew doing the seemingly impossible. It goes without saying that a lot of Australians also had a small celebrationary drink as a result. The next day, the Prime Minister of Australia at the time, Bob Hawke went on National television and uttered his immortal line that any boss, who sacked a worker taking a sickie because he was up late celebrating the win, was 'a bum'. So, many of us didn't go to work. I know I didn't. :) I can't imagine the present Prime Minister, John Howard being quite as "Australian."



Link

19 Comments:

Anonymous confused, maybe not said...

As a northern centrist, I remember 83 - when generously decided to share our (America's) cup with our 'mate' Australia. But like most greedy Americans, I was happy to take it back. ;-)

12/6/07 2:31 am  
Blogger Mikayla Starstuff said...

I love that song :)

Speaking of North Hemisphere-centrism (lol that's awkward), there is an Outback Steakhouse restaurant near where I live in Kentucky, and last time I was there I noticed there was a map of the planet with the south pole oriented up. I'd heard of such things, but it was still a bit disorienting (and therefore totally fascinating) to see one.

Do you see these a lot in your end of the world?

12/6/07 8:25 am  
Blogger Plonka said...

The winning of the "Auld Mug" eh? I remember it well. I think they're still measuring the boat to make sure we didn't cheat..:)

My boss was a 'bum' so I went to work. I fell asleep at my desk though, got caught and received a reaming the likes of which had not been seen before, or since...

Mikayla: Do you see these a lot in your end of the world?

Well, being from even further "down under" than Beep I can safely say occasionally but not that often. They tend to hang on the walls of pubs with character (that's the old bloke in the corner, not the atmosphere) or fish and chip shops that employ amusing anecdotes to take your mind off the grease...:)

12/6/07 11:17 am  
Blogger concerned citizen said...

Hi! it's me L>T
I don't know noth'n about the land down under & except I have some really nice blogger buddies from there.:) Australia really does seem like it would be a nice place to vacation. Any country that smells like vicks-vapor-rub has to be friendly.

12/6/07 1:17 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

confused: Haha

mikayla:

Not really. It is done more as a bit of a joke more than anything.

12/6/07 10:41 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

plonka:

You went to work? Shame on you.;) Luckily I had a boss who aslo spent the most of the night watching it as well, so he wasn't surprised when many Australians didn't turn up to work the next day. My pay wasn't docked either.

LT:

Yeah, I suppose it does smell a bit like Vick's Vapour rub in the bush. I hadn't thought of it like that.

I love the smell of eucalyptus. Such a clean smell.

12/6/07 10:44 pm  
Blogger Plonka said...

Beep: Shame on you.;)

Duly accepted.;)

My boss didn't and I knew the 'bum' (he was and still is by all accounts.) wasn't interested. I wasn't alone though, so there was consolation when other bleary eyes around the office stopped, stunned, to stare at him in disbelief. At least he had the good grace not to sack any of us...

12/6/07 11:11 pm  
Anonymous confused, maybe not said...

Beep, come honk your horn at the playground (where you're needed) and spar with me. The playground patrol (Steveg) came into the ring throwing your favorite punches of unreasonable reason.

13/6/07 1:16 am  
Anonymous Little Pope said...

Sorry Beep. Just passing by
Check this out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2cgAM76wyOc

13/6/07 5:11 am  
Blogger Mikayla Starstuff said...

Ah, too bad. It would function as a perfectly good map. And a nice conscience raiser. I think it was Richard Dawkins somewhere in The God Delusion who said that school kids in the Nothern Hemesphere should be shown a map with the south pole at the top at some time in their school years, just as a conscience raiser. Putting North at the top of the map is nothing but an arbirtary convention, after all. ('Course in context, this was only an example he was using to demonstrate what a conscience raiser would look like.)

We should all be shaken out of our habitual thinking and the assumptions we don't realize we have every now and then :)

13/6/07 11:15 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

confused

Thanks for the invitation, I will see if it is something I want to comment on. ;)

little pope

I don't know about anyone else, but I couldn't get the url to work.

13/6/07 8:29 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

mikayla

RE: "Putting North at the top of the map is nothing but an arbirtary convention, after all."

Yes, it is. But that is what we southern hemispheric centrists get for not developing cartography here.

We also get to pretend that Santa comes in winter, when it is summer - or that the winter solstice (which was the important event in the northern hemisphere predating the story of jesus), occurs in summer.

13/6/07 8:32 pm  
Blogger pissed off patricia said...

I love the song too, but until now was not sure what the words were exactly....now I do. Thanks!

I can't imagine your Prime Minister doing anything unless he and bush had planned it first. We both need to clean political house and begin anew.

14/6/07 5:43 am  
Blogger Mikayla Starstuff said...

What is a vegemite sandwich anyway? Is this slang for something?

14/6/07 6:32 am  
Anonymous NewsElephant said...

Not sure that I agree that maps have North at the top because cartography was a Northern Hemisphere thing.

Roman and Medieval maps were usually orientated so that East was at the top (e.g. the Hereford Mappa Mundi)

Could it be that North ended up at the top because sailors discovered that's where most of the land is? Putting the Southern spaces at the top seems as unintuitive as putting the Pacific in the middle with land around the edge.

On a lighter note, I'd always thought the words were:
'I come from a land down under
Where women go and men chunder'

14/6/07 7:48 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

newselephant

The peoples in the northern hemisphere didn't know that the land masses of the southern hemisphere existed for quite a while. The people who lived in the southern hemisphere also didn't know that the huge land masses of the northern hemisphere existed either.

There is no evidence of extensive map making in Australia prior to white colonization. The native peoples here made maps of a type, but not ones which included knowledge of the earth as an oblated sphere. They did not have the same understanding of the earth, its land masses and its oceans.

The other 2 major land masses that have human populations in the southern hemisphere are africa and sth america. Once again, the people's in these places did not have the same understanding of the earth and its continents.

The civilizations that went on to colonize the planet grew and developed map making skills and knowledge out of the northern hemisphere experience, and transported these ideas to the southern hemisphere.

We "southern hemispheric centrists" could, if we wanted to, make our world maps with antarctica at the top, and the information on them would be no less relevant than the info on the maps we have at present.

But let's face it, most people are confused enough already about "up" and "down" when it comes to objects in space - and I would hate for someone like George Bush to mistakenly bomb Australia under the impression that it was Iraq.

14/6/07 8:43 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

Vegemite is a tasty spread which is used on breakfast toast or in a sandwich. It looks like the stuff you may find on the bottom of pig's feet, or tar on the road on a hot day, but it tastes wonderful.

Children in Australia are born with an inbuilt desire to eat vegemite and will howl like wild dogs if none is forthcoming. (Ok, I made that bit up. ;) )

But, it is true that it is very popular and has icon status in Australia.

14/6/07 8:47 am  
Blogger homo escapeons said...

As a fellow oppressed Colonialist living in Canuckistan I admit that I am insanely jealous of my sisters and brothers in Australia getting sentenced to better real estate.

I have written several posts about our similarities...and being a shark nut led me to an early appreciation of your coastal sealife and the myriad of nasty terrestrial creatures that try kill you in your bathroom.
Most of our dangerous creatures weigh over 1,000 pounds and would rather eat our horse...anyway..

I recently had the pleasure of viewing the PBS special, Voyage of the Courtesans, which retold the emergency shipment of Ladies to Australia. Very interesting.

We Canucks have always embraced Aussie bands (I am listening to Great Southern Land rfn) and when M@W hit our shores we were yelling BE GOOD BE GOOD BE GOOD BE GOOD BE GOOD at every beer soaked gathering.

I also am a fan of Colin's solo work and I am man enough to cry in public when I hear I just don't think I'll Ever Get Over You.

Love my fellow Bloggas downunda because I know that they consider 'Strilyer to be on top of the bloody world regardless of what we trashy Northo Hemispherian Centrists think! I know exactly what Chopper would say to me right about now so I'll shut up.

BUT, I distinctly remember asking somebody what the hell chunder mean't when that album came out and I've watched Breaker Morant so many times that I should have dual citizenship!

14/6/07 2:18 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

homo

Thank for for your comments. They did give me a good chuckle. ;)

14/6/07 4:26 pm  

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