Author Topic: Aussie's attitudes  (Read 3337 times)

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steverino

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Aussie's attitudes
« on: March 22, 2018, 01:21:32 am »
One of things that became apparent to me as a reader of this forum is the independent nature of Australians.  I guess this could be summed up as their no bullshit attitude.  I know there's a danger of over generalizations, but I think the Aussies would agree. 

I was just watching a youtube video featuring an interview between Marcello Kayak (an amazing technician on the guitar) and John Williams the classical guitarist (not the composer).  John spent his early childhood in Australia and he was commenting on the Australian attitude (he used the phrase "nonaggressive" anarchists to characterize this).  Anyway, he told a story, true he claimed, that demonstrated the Aussie independent nature.  I thought I'd retell it, as best I can, as I found it rather humorous.

There was a formal dinner after the Ashes cricket competition, in Australia, between England and Australia.  During the dinner, bread rolls and butter were being served.  The person in charge of dispensing the pad of butter for the rolls would give each diner a single pad of butter.  One person asked, "May I please have another pad of butter", to which the server said "no".  The requester then stated "I'll have you know I'm the president of the New Wales Cricket Association".  The server replied "and I'm the bloke with the butter!"
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2018, 01:47:15 am »
That sort of response from the server is easily credible from a certain type of Aussie - but I wouldn't expect it to be displayed at a formal dinner like that - and certainly not for something as trivial as a pad of butter.  Perhaps at a blue-collar pub or out in the bush - but even then, we generally aren't that stingy about little things like that.

There is the possibility that he may have "read the room" and it was a bit of cheeky engagement for a laugh by everyone at the table - but if it was a serious statement, the server would have copped some repercussions.

However, "shit-stirring" is a national pastime.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2018, 01:49:40 am by Brumby »
 

Offline VK5RC

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2018, 02:04:55 am »
While I would like to think Australians (including me!)  are all free thinkers etc, in some ways our society is not. eg in many countries taking your pet dog into town or even the pub is fine, but only rarely seen in Australia.
Whoah! Watch where that landed we might need it later.
 

steverino

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2018, 02:05:43 am »
Actually, I forgot to state John's final observation.  You can't pull rank on an Aussie.
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2018, 02:31:22 am »
I'd typed my story before seeing this - but it makes for a good intro to it:
Actually, I forgot to state John's final observation.  You can't pull rank on an Aussie.

If you want a real example of an Aussie response - then let me tell you a true story....

Many years ago there was a project running at the company I was working for.  It was a major process change using a modularised system that purportedly could do all manner of wonderful things through a series of integrated components.  This company went for a high-end solution, taking up quite a few components.  It looked really good on paper, but the trouble was, when the pre-contract site visits were done, no single site had anywhere near that degree of complexity installed.  They had 3 or 4 components which varied from site to site and these examples seemed to be running well.

The fun began once the contract was signed.

The degree of integration that looked so good on paper, simply didn't exist in the real world.  The vendor's USA head office sent over a rolling contingent that spent ages trying to tame the beast and the local branch had a few reps in there as well.  It was an absolute schmozzle and there was no sense of success anywhere on the horizon.

Then one day a senior exec from the US head office came out to "address the troops".  The US contingent was in awe.  I got the sense that he was more respected than the President of the USA.  It was almost a case of bow and scrape and "Yes, Sir.  No, Sir.  Three bags full, Sir".

Did I say "almost"?

Anyway, he and the staff from both the USA and Australia went out to a dinner.  At that dinner he made his address speaking of their fine efforts and the success of the project (or something like that.  It was utter bullshit - and as obvious as hell).  The US contingent sat there nodding.  The Aussies burst out laughing.  The US contingent were aghast that such disrespect was show to one so high and mighty in the company.  You just do what is expected, believe what you're told and behave like you should..!!!

Sorry ... With so much bullshit, it's not going to happen in Australia.
 

Offline wasyoungonce

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2018, 02:39:40 am »
American military pilots....didn't like us pointing our bare bums at them as they taxied out.  We saw them being saluted by their crews we thought...yeah bum salute appropriate.  Anyways they took great offence very very unhappy very tense situation, something about denigrating their flag, which of course is not what was intended and IMHO they really needed to lighten up.   I guess no sense of humour!
« Last Edit: March 22, 2018, 02:41:18 am by wasyoungonce »
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Offline thermistor-guy

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #6 on: March 22, 2018, 02:40:39 am »
One of things that became apparent to me as a reader of this forum is the independent nature of Australians.  I guess this could be summed up as their no bullshit attitude.  I know there's a danger of over generalizations, but I think the Aussies would agree. 
...

There's a "larrikin" spirit (old-fashioned word, that) that was (maybe still is) one of the best aspects of Australian culture. My guess is it that came from the early Irish convicts/settlers and their contempt for the English landowners and political class.

One of the features of this spirit was suspicion of those with power and financial success. There was this unspoken feeling that success of that kind was nearly always due to dishonesty and corruption. The only success that Aussies fully celebrated was sporting success - it was seen as clean, honest, untainted, worthy of respect. At one time - I'm going back decades - you could put your life in danger by walking into any working-class pub and bad-mouthing a sporting icon like Sir Donald Bradman.

Americans were seen as bizarre with their worship of people with money. The English were seen as ridiculous with their stunted, stultifying class system.

The worst aspect of larrikinism was its anti-intellectualism. Australian life was narrow and narrow-minded. That has changed greatly in the last fifty years.

You can see two great examples of larrikinism in former Prime Minister Bob Hawke, and in the movie character Crocodile Dundee (played by former comedian Paul Hogan).

There is an interesting historical story involving Bob Hawke, when he was a trade union leader. At the  time, Frank Sinatra had flown in, with his hangers-on, to give concerts here. But towards the end of this visit, Cranky Franky insulted a female journalist, calling her a hooker.

The unions didn't take kindly to an American blowhard mouthing off, so they blackbanned him, his entourage, and most importantly, Cranky Franky's plane. Sinatra couldn't leave the country. His mafia connections couldn't help him here. Sinatra was stranded.

Nationwide, it was a major news story, and Aussie schadenfreude reached epic levels. ACTU President Bob Hawke had to intervene, by smoothing things over with various unions, and getting Sinatra to realize that he only way he was leaving was to issue an apology. Which he did.

Aussie larrikinism, and its distrust of bigshots, were in full effect. Wonderful.
 

Offline MasterTech

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2018, 02:42:34 am »
I can’t comment on the Aussies beign this or that.
However over the years I’ve tried to read lots of articles about the different behavioral traits of cultures around the world (generally speaking), and I’ll just say that the matter is so complex that I’d pay 1000€ for a book that would explain country by country how most people are.
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #8 on: March 22, 2018, 02:46:46 am »
Aussie larrikinism, and its distrust of bigshots, were in full effect. Wonderful.

Demanding respect from Aussies rarely works.  Earning it, however, is something quite different.


... and you can't take yourself too seriously.  There has to be a point where you can laugh at yourself.
 

Offline james_s

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #9 on: March 22, 2018, 03:31:51 am »
American military pilots....didn't like us pointing our bare bums at them as they taxied out.  We saw them being saluted by their crews we thought...yeah bum salute appropriate.  Anyways they took great offence very very unhappy very tense situation, something about denigrating their flag, which of course is not what was intended and IMHO they really needed to lighten up.   I guess no sense of humour!

Hah! I certainly would have been amused, although I suppose it would get old after a while if it kept happening. I'm not in the military though.
 

Online Mr. Scram

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #10 on: March 22, 2018, 03:46:41 am »
I don't know, I've always felt that everything touched by The Queen has similar oddball quirks. I don't feel it's a coincidence that the UK and Australia have internet filtering and Canada has weird laws regarding cartoon violence.
 

Offline thermistor-guy

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #11 on: March 22, 2018, 03:48:51 am »
Aussie larrikinism, and its distrust of bigshots, were in full effect. Wonderful.

Demanding respect from Aussies rarely works.  Earning it, however, is something quite different.
...

I can't remember where I read it, but there is a story set (I think) in WWII England that goes like this.

Two Australian infantrymen are in a bar, having a drink. A British Army officer walks in, and goes over to them. He is offended because the Australians haven't saluted.

He demands that they salute. The two Aussies nonchalantly decline.

"I am a British Army officer!"
"And a good job it is too," says one of the men. "You keep it."
 

Offline Halcyon

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #12 on: March 22, 2018, 08:55:04 am »
American military pilots....didn't like us pointing our bare bums at them as they taxied out.  We saw them being saluted by their crews we thought...yeah bum salute appropriate.  Anyways they took great offence very very unhappy very tense situation, something about denigrating their flag, which of course is not what was intended and IMHO they really needed to lighten up.   I guess no sense of humour!

Gees! They ought to see what goes on in the Australian Defence Forces! The Yanks got off lightly. Unprofessional, yes, but all in good fun. We all fight for the same team in the end.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2018, 08:56:58 am by Halcyon »
 

Offline TerraHertz

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #13 on: March 22, 2018, 09:05:17 am »
However, "shit-stirring" is a national pastime.
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Offline BillB

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #14 on: March 22, 2018, 03:31:48 pm »
I've always appreciated this about the Aussies.  I thought it was from living in an environment where everything that crawls, slithers, flies, and swims can kill you and possibly want to eat you.
 

Offline johnboxall

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #15 on: March 24, 2018, 04:46:15 am »

There is an interesting historical story involving Bob Hawke, when he was a trade union leader. At the  time, Frank Sinatra had flown in, with his hangers-on, to give concerts here. But towards the end of this visit, Cranky Franky insulted a female journalist, calling her a hooker.

The unions didn't take kindly to an American blowhard mouthing off, so they blackbanned him, his entourage, and most importantly, Cranky Franky's plane. Sinatra couldn't leave the country. His mafia connections couldn't help him here. Sinatra was stranded.

Nationwide, it was a major news story, and Aussie schadenfreude reached epic levels. ACTU President Bob Hawke had to intervene, by smoothing things over with various unions, and getting Sinatra to realize that he only way he was leaving was to issue an apology. Which he did.

Aussie larrikinism, and its distrust of bigshots, were in full effect. Wonderful.

Reasonable movie about that - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Night_We_Called_It_a_Day_(film)
 

Offline vk6zgo

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #16 on: March 24, 2018, 08:37:40 am »
I've always appreciated this about the Aussies.  I thought it was from living in an environment where everything that crawls, slithers, flies, and swims can kill you and possibly want to eat you.

I've never understood people who live in a country like the USA, with big, furry land animals that can, & will, eat you being worried about a few snakes, crocodiles & things.
 

Offline Halcyon

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #17 on: March 24, 2018, 10:36:41 am »
The whole deadly animals thing is a bit of a myth. Sure, we have some of the most venomous creatures in the world, but for the most part, you'll probably never come across them.

Most spiders you find around your garden and home (at least in Sydney) are harmless, in fact they are beneficial. Same with snakes, if you happen to come across one, it's likely going to be more scared of you than you are of it.

At the end of the day, if you respect these creatures and give them space, they'll leave you alone. If you go around poking the bear, expect to get bitten.

In Australia there has been 1 fatality in past 39 years from a spider bite and 19 deaths from a snake bite in the past 10 years (and most of those occurred in regional/rural areas). It's really not that common.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2018, 10:38:13 am by Halcyon »
 
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Offline MasterTech

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #18 on: March 24, 2018, 11:11:16 am »
OT but Last month I learned on “River Monsters” that Australia homes the stonefish and the box jellyfish, both as deadly as cyanide.
In the US I’d be wary of camping in some areas as there are ticks that carry the Lyme disease, nasty too.
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #19 on: March 24, 2018, 12:10:31 pm »
Don't forget this little guy (a big one is only 8" in size)



Just make sure you keep your distance - especially when those blue rings get bright.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2018, 12:13:47 pm by Brumby »
 

Online CatalinaWOW

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #20 on: March 24, 2018, 04:47:04 pm »
I am sure there is some sort of Aussie character, but if you are anything like the US it comes with lots of caveats and exceptions.  The character of a southern redneck, a Compton gangbanger, a Boston brahmen and a North Hollywood hipster have more differences than commonalities.
 

Online Mr. Scram

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #21 on: March 24, 2018, 11:02:33 pm »
OT but Last month I learned on “River Monsters” that Australia homes the stonefish and the box jellyfish, both as deadly as cyanide.
In the US I’d be wary of camping in some areas as there are ticks that carry the Lyme disease, nasty too.
Lyme disease is increasingly becoming a problem in many parts of the world. It’s nasty indeed. I’ve seen people contract it and get violently ill, never being quite the same person again.

Parasites are nasty creatures at the best of times, but when they’re carrying potentially permanently lifechanging diseases they become a real nightmare.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2018, 11:05:31 pm by Mr. Scram »
 

Online Cerebus

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #22 on: March 24, 2018, 11:08:25 pm »
I don't feel it's a coincidence that the UK and Australia have internet filtering and Canada has weird laws regarding cartoon violence.

I don't know where you get these strange ideas, but there is no Internet filtering in the UK.

A few, a very few websites have been banned in the UK by court order, usually for commercial reasons (e.g. piracy), and in practice that means you can't see them if, and only if, you rely on the DNS servers of a handful of the biggest ISPs to find them for you.
Anybody got a syringe I can use to squeeze the magic smoke back into this?
 

Online Cerebus

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #23 on: March 24, 2018, 11:09:58 pm »
It may say something about Aussie attitudes in that, in the UK, we "take the piss out of" out mates, in Aus you "rip the piss out of" your mates.
Anybody got a syringe I can use to squeeze the magic smoke back into this?
 

Online Mr. Scram

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Re: Aussie's attitudes
« Reply #24 on: March 24, 2018, 11:28:42 pm »
I don't know where you get these strange ideas, but there is no Internet filtering in the UK.

A few, a very few websites have been banned in the UK by court order, usually for commercial reasons (e.g. piracy), and in practice that means you can't see them if, and only if, you rely on the DNS servers of a handful of the biggest ISPs to find them for you.
Have you followed the news? Reporter without Borders lists the UK amongst the “Enemies of the internet”, alongside contries like Saudi Arabia, Iran, China and Pakistan. There’s ever more surveillance and filterting going on. Let’s also not forget the plan to filter internet porn, requiring anyone wanting to see a naughty video to register. Or how it’s one of the very few nations that has a decryption law, locking people up for failure to decrypt.

The same is happening in real life. The CCTV density is unlike pretty much any other place on Earth. There’s no doubt about it, the UK government makes your business its business.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_censorship_in_the_United_Kingdom
http://www.wired.co.uk/article/porn-block-ban-in-the-uk-age-verifcation-law
 


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