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Where automobiles fear to tread

A cheering story of a possum who didn’t get stuck up a chimney (C8) from Heather Lindsay of Woonona.“While we were away on holidays, a possum entered our house down the chimney. We know because it scampered to every window in the house searching for an escape with its little sooty feet and then clearly escaped back from where it came. Lucky for us, no stench: just lots of cleaning.”

Another item about stuffing dead things into strange places (C8) to annoy people, from Chris Haigh of Oatlands. “One of the bowser boys at a service station in Five Dock in the late 1960s had a Ford Customline that he had treated the floors and inside doors with fish oil for rustproofing. Complaining about the smell, he was told to put the car heater on and let the car dry out in the sun. To no avail. The dead fish that the other boys had placed in the heater hose just smelled worse and worse for days until they just had to tell him. He was not amused.”

There are actual reasons behind cars tested for “Australian conditions” (C8) – it’s not just a tagline cooked up by some advertising executive. Marco Giavitto of Leichhardt recalls that “when Holden imported some German-made Opel Commodores to test them for Australia, they snapped in half at the firewall on outback roads”.

On the same subject, Tony Sullivan of Adamstown Heights adds that “Hyundai and Kia among others still test here and modify suspensions before sale (C8). Somehow we have the lumpiest roads in the world – and they are the tarred ones!” Or as John Ure of Mount Hutton puts it: “It wasn’t the roads that made Australia unique, it was the lack of them.”

One for the ‘you’d think they’d have something better to do during a pandemic’ file from Jeff Apter of Keiraville. “While briefly waiting for my wife in an empty street outside a virtually empty mall, without a car and/or soul in sight, I was moved along by a parking officer.”

Steve Meacham of Avalon finds it refreshing to discover that schoolboy/girl humour survives even in these dark times. “Some talented youngsters have changed the title of Anthony Hopkins’ Oscar-winning film, The Father, at the local cinema. It took ingenuity and presumably a ladder to accomplish. It is now advertising The Fart. They’ve given it an M rating.“

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