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It's enough to drive a dingo to drink

By Shoeshine

Friday 2nd May 2003

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The other day SHOESHINE, a little depressed after reading recent reports of New Zealand's economic invasion by the Australians, came across a letter to the editor of the Sydney-based coffee table magazine Foot & Mouth. By kind permission of the editor it is reproduced here


Dear Cobber

Strike me blue! What's Aussie coming to these days?

It's getting so a bloke can't buy a blinking thing these days that hasn't been made by those jokers over the Tasman.

Take my house.

It was bad enough when I whipped the packaging off my new pool pump last weekend to show Bluey the Made In Australia label.

Bluey's eyesight is a bit sharper than mine. "It says Made in Austria, mate," he says.

I can tell you, it took a few cans of XXXX before I got over the shock enough to start giving my place a thorough Oz check.

Before I got started I thought I'd better get something in my guts so I pulled the bread and butter out of the F&P.

Thought I'd better check the labels. Bread made by Goodman Fielder, that's OK. Hang on, hasn't that just been taken over by that Kiwi fella, Graeme Hart? XXXX!

Butter's no good either. Looks Aussie, tastes Aussie, says it's Aussie, made by Peters & Brownes, mate, owned by Fonterra.

Same outfit made my cheese and my yoghurt. Even my Pura milk's Kiwi-contaminated.

After I'd dumped the stuff out along with the lamb leg and the "Cervena," I gave the kitchen cupboard a good Kiwi cleansing. When there was nothing left I could see the label.

Laminex, it said. A division of Fletcher Building.

Same with the bench top.

Fortunately I'd paid my AAPT bill so I got my builder Johno on the blower. The news was all bad. Practically the whole house ­ MDF, LVL, structural timber, flooring panels, particle boards, plywood ­ Carter Holt Harvey Pty.

Same jokers even made the dunny roll. Young Shaylene's crawling around the living room in a nappy made by, you guessed it, Carter Holt Harvey.

"Don't worry, mate," Johno says. "At least the roof's Australian. My place is a kitset from Lockwood Homes."

Sat down and turned on the box but it was some thing with Cliff Curtis snogging Rebecca Gibney. Didn't want Shaylene watching that sort of stuff so I turned the set off and waited for Darlene to get home so I could get out and blow the froth off a couple.

Darlene came in late with a pile of shopping bags. Bit of jewellery from Michael Hill, a few clothes from Hallensteins and a big bag of cheap-looking plastic stuff from some place called The Warehouse.

"Never heard of them," I says to Darlene. "Who are they?"

"Used to be Crazy Clint's," says Darlene.

"Taken over by the Kiwis."

I left D sipping a bottle of Tatachilla ­ good Aussie label, that ­ and checked the mail on the way out.

Nothing much ­ a premium renewal on my Tower life insurance policy and a snooty letter from Baycorp Advantage about the HP payments on my Dish Drawer.

Bit of a mess on the Fullarton Rd, looked like a Mainfreight truck had broadsided a Britz campervan, so I swung left past the Nuplex factory to get to Flannagans.

The boys were watching the news ­ some stuff about how some jokers called Meridian have bought the local power plant.

Ron Brierley was there with a fella in glasses and a red shirt so I grabbed a glass of Toohey's and joined them. Dinkum bloke, that Ron, gave me a good price for my MEM shares.

After a while me, Ron, and Stephen ­ that's the bloke in the red shirt ­ thought we'd go for a bit of a flutter so we piled into Ron's limo and headed down to the Adelaide Casino.

Stone me if I didn't lose a week's wages. Whoever owns that place must be rolling in it. Wonder what they do with all the money.

On the way out I grabbed a drink out of the VTL machine and Ron dropped me off at Flanagan's.

When I got home Shaylene had thrown up her Big M choc berry milk on the Cavalier carpet and D was cleaning it up with Handee towels.

Now don't get me wrong, cobber. I like the Kiwis. I hope they all stay over there so there's more of them to visit.

But all this talk about us adopting their dollar's got me rattled.

Strewth, mate, Aussie culture's got to be worth fighting for, right?

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