TOPICS: Bob Hawke, Mr Cool 

RIGHT. This doesn’t make sense. When did Bob Hawke become cool?

No one was more in demand at last week’s Jack Newton Celebrity Golf Classic than the 83-year-old former prime minister. 

Of the gathered sporting greats, TV presenters and pretty young things, Bob Hawke was the celebrity the celebrities wanted to meet.

‘‘They were all into his rousing rendition of Waltzing Matilda,’’ a witness reported.

‘‘There were even a few good sorts wanting to talk to him.’’ 

The Silver Bodgie has somehow transcended party politics, like Winston Churchill, and has an aura with young people, like Mick Jagger has.

So how has it happened?

If asked, the ex-PM might say it was his floating of the Australian dollar, or freeing up the financial system. 

But many of his young admirers couldn’t tell you which party he belonged to.

We think it’s his drinking. A video taken on a phone last year at the SCG (which got a million views on YouTube) showed Hawkie making short work of a lager. See it here

The jubilant fan who handed it to him cried ‘‘one for the country, Robert!’’

TAKING THE LONG VIEW: Former prime minister Bob Hawke.  Pictures: Peter Stoop

TAKING THE LONG VIEW: Former prime minister Bob Hawke. Pictures: Peter Stoop

That’s what people like. 

Ice man  cometh

UNBELIEVABLE: A station wagon filled with ice at Nelson Bay.

UNBELIEVABLE: A station wagon filled with ice at Nelson Bay.

HOW many bags of ice are jammed in this car? 

It seemed safe to assume the gentleman had a party planned. 

With ice in demand at this time of year, perhaps above all others, many in the line at this Anna Bay service station yesterday couldn’t believe what they were seeing.

‘‘He must have a big Esky,’’ said one.

The chap turned out to be the station’s owner, who was taking it to another site at Thornton. After all that lifting, we reckon he’s earned a few Boxing Day cold ones.

Pet peeves that get on readers’ nerves

Y MACDONALD from Toronto told us she hated being referred to as a ‘‘guy’’.

This invoked an annoying memory for Fred Saunders, of Waratah West.

‘‘I recently went into a small shop at a local shopping centre to buy some blank cards, only to be met by ‘Hello Buddy, what can I do for you Buddy, yes Buddy,’ from a mid teenager,’’ recounts Fred. 

‘‘I think the look on my face told the story – I was not impressed, as a few days off 80.’’

Leanne Rankin’s pet hate is when people say ‘should of’ instead of ‘should have’.

‘‘Ditto for ‘could of’,’’ she says.

‘‘While I’m at it, I’m not exactly thrilled at ‘Hey’ instead of ‘Hi’ or ‘Hello’. ‘Hey’ just doesn’t seem to make sense, unless it’s followed by another word.’’

Stan Spink, of East Maitland, wants to know why people are so shy about saying ‘‘Toilet’’.

‘‘We do not bathe in these places. We do our appropriate business. These should be referred to as toilets.’’

Topics confess we’d never thought about that one, but Stan’s next pet hate had us banging the desk in agreement.

‘‘Another pet hate is when a certain Newcastle radio station in their news bulletins says ‘cops, firies and ambos from Newy attended the scene of the accident’. It is only courtesy to give them and Newcastle their correct titles.’’


We’re starting to hear the Gold Coast referred to as ‘‘The Goldy’’, and the Sunshine Coast as ‘‘the Sunny Coast’’. 

The same number of syllables it would take to say them properly.

Mark our words, dear reader. ‘‘Sydy’’ and ‘‘Melly’’ can’t be far off for Australia’s two biggest cities.


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