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Amazing Australian Stupidity
How do staff at Mossman Post Office find their way to work in the morning to 24 Front Street if they do not know where 64 Front Street is?
On 21 September I posted a letter with some documents and
a cheque at the post office in Mossman, Queensland.
Australia's biggest tree killed
Australia's biggest, most robust hardwood - 350 years old
- has died in december 2003.
Baby tied to car door
A Perth mother faces a charge of dangerous driving after tying a baby carrier with a baby in it to the faulty rear door of her car to stop it swinging open as she drove. She was spotted on 23 december 2003 by two traffic policemen who saw the car negotiate a roundabout before the left rear door of the car swung open. They stopped the woman driver and discovered the door did not shut properly and that she had tied a baby carrier, with the 20-month-old infant sitting in it, to the door in an effort to stop it swinging open. When interviewed, she told police she had driven several kilometres along the freeway, during which time the wind blowing from the right direction had kept the door closed.
Beer in court
19 Year old Dean Ramse, from Walloon west of Brisbane, appeared in Ipswich Magistrate's Court charged with riding the train without a ticket and drinking in a railway station. He arrived in court carrying a plastic bag full of beer bottles and a hamburger, and also his mobile phone started ringing in the middle of court proceedings. He was fined $600 with one month to pay and a conviction was recorded.
Bit short of funds
It is a scenario that is familiar to most of us and would have happened
to just about anyone at least once. You go to the bank to withdraw some
cash but there is a bit less in the account than you thought, especially
with the steep fees Aussie banks charge and take out of your account this
can happen easily.
On December 13, 2002 Troy Albert Outhwaite made a bomb hoax call to the
000 emergency number reporting he had seen a metal box, with a timer and
wires sticking out of it, in the toilets at a hotel in Wynnum, Brisbane.
Breatharian till the end
In 1988 Lani Marcia Roslyn Morris, 53, was not feeling too well so she thought it a good idea to travel from Melbourne to Brisbane for some "spiritual cleansing". Jim Vadim Pesnak claimed to be able to cure her if she became a 'breatharian'. Breatharians belive they can survive by breathing air and living on light and she was to undertake a 21-day initiation process into breatharianism which involved seven days without any nourishment at all including water, and then a further 14 days on limited liquids.. Unfortunately for Ms Morris her condition deteriorated more and she became paralysed down one side, could not talk, and was vomiting a black tar-like substance while she lay in Mr. Pesnak's caravan in the backgarden on Beck Street, Ormiston, in bayside Brisbane. Mr. Pesnak did not call a doctor as he believed Ms Morris was only undergoing a spiritual blockage and would solve this by just breathing more. End of the story was that Ms. Morris died and Mr. Pesnak, 63, went to jail for 6 years and his wife Eugenia, 60, went to jail for 3 years on charges of manslaughter.
The website breatharian.com says;
The Breatharian needs air and Sunlight only, and nothing more to sustain his body. The world is flooded with books on food and eating. No one seems to realize that eating is not natural, but an acquired habit, like smoking and drinking, and that FRESH CLEAN AIR is the Cosmic Reservoir of all things, including the substance that builds and sustains the human body.
Blowup doll rafting
Whitewater rafting might be a popular activity in north Queensland but
a 19 year old Melbourne couple thought they'd do it a bit different...
Builder shoots nail through head
In March 2004 Brad Shorten, 33, of Melbourne, was having a few beers with his mates and picked up a nail gun and pointed it at his head. He thought it was empty as he had removed the nail cartridge and turned off the compressor. But there was still pressure in the hose and it shot a 3.2cm nail through his skull into his brain, just behind his temple. It left a small red dot and at first he did not realize the nail had been counter-sunk into his skull. He felt minimal pain but started to feel a bit light headed so his son insisted on calling an ambulance. At Royal Melbourne Hospital doctors took four hours to take a part of his skull off and pull the nail out of his brain again and said that he could have been dead or paralysed had the nail gone a centimetre deeper.
Chat to George W.Bush
Sydney man Wenhao Zhao, aged 33, was on holidays in the US and thought
he'd like to meet the American president to have a chat about the weather
etc. A nice thought, but most people would probably realize that a president
probably has more important things to do than chat to tourists.
Christmas in jail
You would think it is dumb enough as it is to park in a no-stopping zone outside a police station but Waleed Mhaich and Mohamed Fahda were also in possession of a loaded revolver and ammunition so they spent Christmas Day 2003 behind bars in Sydney waiting to face court on 15 offences between them, including possessing an unregistered and unauthorised firearm, carrying a loaded gun in a public place, and goods in custody.
Crash in to the police station
If you have a drink before you drive it is a good idea to take it easy and take a back road to keep a low profile to not get noticed by the cops. In February 2006 a Port Lincoln man did not follow this rule when had a few too many drinks and crashed his car into the town's cop shop, causing at least $5000 damage to the building.
Don't think only Aussies do stupid things, tourists in Australia
do some stupid things too.
Daintree river ferry contract gap
Tribulation, in the heart of the Daintree rainforest, is
one of Australia's top tourism destinations and people from all around
the world come to see this amazing place where ancient rainforests run
right down to pristine beaches and the Great Barrier Reef.
When you're on the ferry you may wonder what the above resque equipment is all about. The orange block pictured above is rated for 18 persons, obviously they can not sit on this block but the way this resque equipment is supposed to save people is that they swim next to it while holding on to the ropes on the side. This makes some real good sense on a river where a dozen tour operators make a living out of crocodile spotting tours. It appears even the Titanic was better equipped for an emergency than this ferry.
Beside the one-off stupidity described above there is also a permanent continuing amazing stupidity with this ferry;
Council regulations say that trucks carrying fuel have to travel on the ferry alone, with no other vehicles or passengers, even if it is peak time and queues are built up on both sides of the river. This while the fuel truck sits in the normal queue before it reaches the ferry with people walking around the truck smoking cigarettes, but then on the ferry where smoking is not allowed the fuel truck has to travel alone! What sounds safer to you? Walking around a fuel truck on the road with a cigarette, or sitting next to a fuel truck on the ferry in your car while you are not smoking?
On January 10, 2004, electrician Mark Avery from Blacktown detonated a huge 97kg fertiliser bomb in a suburban Sydney paddock. At first there were fears of a terrorist link but it turned out to be just a hobbyist. The explosion was heard 20km away, destroyed an old car, ripped a crater in the ground 5m wide and 2m deep and scattered debris for 350m. The ingredients of the bomb, which were later bought by reporters of a newspaper in a matter of 20 minutes around Sydney, were the same used in the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing. He actually set off the bomb with a sparkler and was very lucky he didn't blow himself up.
In February 2004 a 25-year old master of disaster decided to jump from the balcony of the Pakenham Football Club in Melbourne's east around 1am and landed on a tree. One of the tree's branches impaled him through the groin and speared in up to his abdomen. The local fire brigade cut the branch and he was taken to the Dandenong Hospital where he underwent surgery to have the branch removed.
In December 2004 a Queensland woman was caught drag racing along a busy suburban road at 144km/h in a 60 zone with three young children aged one, five and seven in the back seat. She was competing with a friend who had his fiance and 18-month-old child in his car. Later in court, when she was fined $850 and disqualified from driving for six month,s she said her only regret was getting caught.
Dumb and dumber
One of our readers sent us this pic of a Ferrari folded around a pole in Fremantle, looks like the driver took the turn a little bit too wide, at least the blokes in the pub behind it appear to be enjoying their afternoon...
And while we're on the subject of cars going a bit fast and getting scratched, check out the pics below that another reader sent us, a bloke in a ute cruised through Kalgoorlie and by the looks of it he must have been going a bit faster than the legal 50k/h, because after he hit a tree he ended up with two utes!
Fuel truck must travel alone
On the Daintree river ferry in north Queensland the local
council regulations say that trucks carrying fuel have to travel on the
ferry alone, with no other vehicles or passengers, even if it is peak
time and queues are built up on both sides of the river.
Illegal immigrant goes to work at detention centre.
In January 2004 an illegal immigrant was caught by authorities when he went to work as a sub-contractor at the Maribyrnong Immigration detention centre, a facility to hold illegal immigrants. But on arrival he was regognized by a visiting immigration compliance officer who remembered the man's case so he never left the detention centre again.
In to the lions' den
In March 1989 32 year old Mr. Ellie Quo decided to go to the Melbourne
Zoo. Lots of people do, but usually they wait for the gates to open in
the morning and the buy a ticket. Ellie decided to do things a bit different
and went in the middle of the night and climbed in to the lions enclosure
to test his skills in martial arts and take on the lions. Once inside
his karate skills proved to be of not much help and the lions feasted
on this midnight snack and Mr. Quo was no more.
Miner cuts arm off
In June 2003 Australian miner Colin Jones, 43, was working alone underground
and overturned his tractor. He was trapped underneath and, probably having
fresh memories of the American rock climber that made international headlines
two months earlier by cutting his own arm off, immdediately got his knife
out and cut his arm off!
Pain in the ass
If something or someone is a bit of a nuisance it is a common to use
the expression "it's a pain in the ass".
Short cut over the train tracks
Darren Harper and his mate Paul Altair went fishing in November 2003 at Bosstock Reservoir in Victoria. But at some point they ran out of grog and, since fishing and drinking go together hand in hand for most Aussies it was decided that Darren would go and buy some more cans of bourbon and coke. On his way back from the bottle shop Darren thought he had a good idea and would be able to return to his fishing a bit quicker if he took a shortcut across the railway tracks.
This turned out to be not quite such a brilliant idea as his ute got stuck on the train tracks , and not much later a Ballarat bound train with 69 passengers aboard came thundering down the track at 130 km/h. The master of disaster managed to get out of the ute before it was hit but the train derailed, 30 people were injured of which six serious, and the damage bill ran up to $3 million. Darren was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison and Paul to two months but both sentences were immediately suspended.
Sleeping on the train tracks
In October 2004 a 14 year old boy from Bundaberg, Queensland, for some reason decided to take a nap on the train tracks one evening. He got a rude awakening when the next train came past but still managed to roll to the middle of the track when the train went over him, ambulance officers pulled the boy from underneath the second carriage and he was taken to the Bundaberg hospital to be treated for a broken pelvis and head injuries.
A man flew from Adelaide to Brisbane on VIrgin Blue to deliver a load
of cannabis, about $90,000.- worth.
The burning cyclist
Assisted by his son, Sydney man Brian Concannon, 39, set
himself alight before climbing on his mountain bike and cycling off the
roof of a public toilet block on october 27 2003.
Return to the party
On november 16 2003 a 20-year-old man was thrown out of Panthers World of Entertainment in Sydney around 1am for drunken behaviour but tried to get back inside by climbing onto the roof and making his way down through the air conditioning system. He got stuck and then used his mobile phone to call a friend who raised the alarm. Rescue crews managed to finally free him six hours later, by this time he had to be treated in hospital for dehydration.
Few years ago a couple of blokes were somewhere out in the South Australian desert playing a game that was a bit on the cruel and politically incorrect side. They caught rabbits, tied a stick of gelignite to them and then set them free. The rabbits would then run into their burrows after which a huge explosion would rock the ground. However, after the game had continued for a while one rabbit decided to do something different, he ran the other way and hid under the new Toyota Landcruiser!
A Sydney student ate two slugs from a suburban backyard for a $20 dare but got more than he bargained for when he contracted a potentially deadly form of meningitis. The young man was diagnosed with swelling of the brain membranes and needed to have fluid drained from his brain and spent 17 days in hospital. It was five months before he returned to full time studies. His friend also ate slugs but vomited them up, losing the $20 but saving himself a potential case of meningitis.There have been numerous similar cases recorded since 1971 and the University of Sydney reports that the meningitis was caused by a worm found in rat lungs, but carried as larvae in slugs and snails.
Solar power in the rainforest
90 year old Alan Waddell, who has walked more than 2000 kms through every street of 143 Sydney suburbs, found this beauty on the right, we borrowed this picture from his website Walksydneystreets.net
Paul Harbers sent us this beauty on the left, he
shot the pic at the Loganlea Toll Plaza on the Logan Motorway near
Brisbane. Main Roads stuffed up not once but twice as the one on
the other side of the road is the same.
In december 2003 Tasmaniac Gregory John Hartland-White dressed up as Santa Claus and armed himself with a fake gun and robbed a Tasmanian branch of Westpac of $13,451 . He purchased a Santa suit from a nearby store, found two pieces of pipe, which he bound together to make the ends look like a double-barrelled shotgun and only one hour and 20 minutes after coming up with the idea he held up the bank dressed as Santa Claus. After the hold up he changed his clothes in a horse-float for hire at a nearby service station in full view of witnesses before pedalling away on a bicycle and he was still wearing red Santa pants under his trousers when later apprehended by police. He was sentenced to four years.
The Daintree is a river in North Queensland well known for lots of ginormous crocodiles, but around 1994 a local character thinking he was a real life version of the movie hero Crocodile Dundee and decided he was going to swim across the river. The stunt was announced well in advance to allow plenty of media attention and funds raised were to be given to the local school. He actually did the swim, survived, but did not rise to international fame like Dundee and was quickly forgotten and the school refused the money as it did not want to be associated in any way with this stunt that set an extremely bad example of irresponsible behaviour to the children.
A police highway patrol unit at Box Hill in Melbourne were surprised
to see a man drive by honking his horn and waving at them, so they decided
to stop him and do a breath test.
The blow gadget nearly exploded as this man recorded more than five times the legal blood/alcohol limit.
When the man was spoken to by the police he said that he was not even aware that he was driving a car.
Drunk drivers get caught everyday in Australia but the reason that this one qualified to be listed on our Amazing Australian Stupidity page is that the police said that they were busy with other things and would not even have stopped this car, if it wasn't for the fact that the driver was honking and waving at them!
Paolo from the Northern Territory went on holidays to Thailand. On his
arrival he used his credit card to get a cash advance from the ATM which
worked smoothly. But the next time he went to the ATM his card got refused
by the ATM, he tried others but the same story everywhere. He emailed
his bank, Westpac, but only got the auto reply that his email will be
answered within a couple of business days. Great help if you are in Asia
with no money. Several days later he finally managed to find out what
had happened; his bank thought an ATM withdrawal in Thailand was an "unusual
transaction" for this account so they rang his home phone to verify
this transaction. When their call was not answered they decide to block
this account so no more money could be taken out. DUH!
1. Why would you try to ring someone on his Darwin home phone number to ask him if he had just made a withdrawal in Thailand today?
2. If the home phone is not answered would it not be bleedin' obvious that this person is on holidays in the place where the withdrawal was just made?
Paolo was lucky he was on holidays with a mate that had a credit card with a bank other than Westpac that lent him some money to cover the rest of the holidays and get him home again.
You know of ( or committed ) any amazing Australian stupidity? Then contact us!