TOPICS: City doodler like Banksy

NEWCASTLE might have its own Banksy.

A peek inside the David Maddison Building (that one on the corner of King and Watt streets that looks like the 1980s' idea of space-aged) has revealed this array of drawings near the ceiling.

The sketches spider along a concrete beam. There are portraits of men and women, domestic scenes, volcanoes and a space invader.

Do you know the David Maddison doodler, whose works remind us of the British graffiti artist Banksy?

Developer Keith Stronach is pouring $12 million into revamping the building, which will feature a ground-floor cafe and six levels of office space.

A Big Easy try

THIRTY-five Wanderers rugby players are getting their outfits ready for Mardi Gras. They even have a float.

The club's Julian Morton tells us the players will find themselves in the thick of the New Orleans Carnival tradition when they hit the Big Easy next month. What did you think we meant?

"When we decided on New Orleans we said 'we should be on a float'," Morton said.

So how do you get on a float?

"We approached the people supplying our accommodation and the New Orleans Rugby Club, and they put us on to the right people for a float."

For "a fair hit per head", the Wanderers contingent will have a priceless view of one of the world's biggest, and booziest, parades. They'll be riding with The Krewe of Tucks. Their website informs us they take their name "from Friar Tuck, an uptown pub where two college students decided to create their own Carnival krewe".

Their past "kings" include John Candy and Eugene Levy. This is all sounding a lot like the set-up for American Pie 8.

The Wanderers' players are reportedly eager to try the local custom of throwing beads at damsels on balconies, who in turn have a tendency to disrobe.

"We've got to play on the Monday," Morton said.

"I don't really know what we've got ourselves in for."

The carnival runs from January 19 until mid-February, with a pause for the Super Bowl.

The Wanderers have toured overseas every three years since 1990 without any deaths or arrests, and this one will also take in New York.

Spying the fox

IT's easy to hate foxes. They eat people's chooks, and they're devious about it. Then again, most of us eat chooks, and we don't even do the dirty work.

Carrington resident of 12 years Christine Pont has reported seeing a fox near the Criterion Hotel.

Rabbit sightings in the same area were common until recently, Ms Pont said.

"I know what a fox looks like because my sister has a property at Armidale," Ms Pont said.

She saw the suspect about 7am on her daily walk, and thought it was a dog and then maybe a big cat.

Regular readers will recall Carrington is home to at least one large designer cat.

"It wasn't fully grown, which makes me think if there is a small one, there must be big ones around," Ms Pont said.

"I'm only five feet tall and I was a bit worried because it circled around behind me."

Have any other Carringtonians seen foxes in their neighbourhood?

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