Down Under

I have loved Australia since I was a lass. Part of it was the fact I am a child of the 80s, which gave us both The Man From Snowy River and Men at Work. Frankly, I wanted to go anyplace where hawt guys wore jeans as tight as the ones festooned upon the taunt butt-cheeks of Tom Burlinson. Seriously, they were painted on:

tom burlinson

Moreover, beautiful Australian Mel Gibson was also brought to my attention courtesy of the Mad Max Movies. Now, this was long ago in the days of yore, when no one knew what an anti-Semitic, misogynistic, homophobic, racist bullying asshat he was. All I knew back then was that the man was an ode to pulchritude:


As far as I was concerned, the entire Land Down Under was peopled with man-candy. Thus, I yearned to visit Australia.

When I was slightly older I realized that movie stars were perhaps not a representative sampling of manliness from Oz, but I still wanted to go for the cool accents and the awesome fauna. Furthermore, I started watching The Crocodile Hunter when I was babysitting, and found that I enjoyed it as much as the kids. What’s not to love about Australia?

Then it started to dawn on me – damn near everything on the continent is out to get you. Even when Australia’s tourism board is trying to calm you down, it still scares the shit out of you by running down a simple list of animals that will kill you stone dead if they want to, not including the infamous Drop Bears. Nothing is safe there. For God’s sake, even the adorable little platypuses have venomous spines in their feet to jab you with. Nor are the “safe” animals really safe. Take the echidna for example. It doesn’t have lethal toxins it can spurt, but its junk is so unholy it can send you into shock. The wildlife in Australia is so inherently dangerous that I think the guys there are so fokking cute only because it is a natural defense mechanism: you only live when you are just too pretty to eat/sting/bite/strangle.  

Recently, Australian beasties made the news yet again with their jolly antics. It seems that an Australian toddler (he is probably cute) found some interesting eggs and brought them inside his house and put them in his mommy’s closet to keep, whereupon they hatched and turned out to be the second most venomous snake on the planet! Fun times!

Then again, (not counting the Drop Bear massacres) the dangerous animals in Australia only kill about five people a year. In contrast, more than 8500 Americans are murdered via gunshot each year.  Hmmm … Australia, in spite of funnel web spiders scuttling around like eight-legged death dealers, is looking more appealing by the minute.

About Betty Fokker

I'm a stay-at-home feminist mom.
This entry was posted in I've been thinking too much, shit I think y'all should know. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Down Under

  1. oneoftheotherjennifers says:

    I spent three months in New Zealand several years ago. The men there actually are amazingly hot, even the non-hot ones, if you see what I mean. I think it’s because the culture is all about getting outside and moving around. So the majority, instead of the small minority like here in the US, are tan, fit, and running around hiking and sailing and mountain biking and whatnot. Most adorably, many of them have no idea they are attractive, unlike fit men here who are all too aware. I was there with my husband and my seven-year-old, but I certainly enjoyed the scenery. ;-)

  2. Yeah I guess one has to decide – do I want to be brutally murdered by a malicious human or stung to death by something that is innocently protecting itself, it’s young or it’s territory. At least until we get better gun laws, anyway.

  3. inkgrrl says:

    A friend of mine won her Hugo in Australia, dubbing herself The Princess of The Land of Poison and Flame ;-)

  4. Skye says:

    Hmm. Maybe I need to take a visit down under. Think they have any single man-candy in the around-50 age range? :D

  5. Robin S. says:

    I just realized my daughter hasn’t seen The Man From Snowy River. I now have an excuse to bring that movie out and drool.

  6. Mandy says:

    As an Aussie, the whole freak out that you guys have about things trying to kill you, cracks me up.
    We know there’s deadly things in the environment. That’s why we don’t bother them.
    I still swim in the jellyfish laden sea- I just make sure I swim in the nets, and if there’s any irikanji known to be about- both evil and not stopped by nets- I don’t swim.
    I don’t touch random wildlife. Most of them aren’t aggressive- emus can give you a heck of a kick but won’t generally approach you.
    Cassowarys- well, they’re evil.
    I was watching Turtle Man, and he was helping “rescue” an Emu that had gotten away from a place over there somewhere.
    They were keen to round it up ASAP, because the last time one got out, some stupid kids got hurt harassing it.
    And there’s the difference. We are brought up knowing not to touch, or bother them.
    We have a healthy respect for the native wildlife.
    My husband is in the military, and over here we don’t usually live on base- but one of his more recent postings saw us on a base that was crawling with both Kangaroos and Emus.
    Occasionally an Emu would run along with us, when I was riding a bike and he was running- but you didn’t go up to either, and you did NOT get between Dad and his chicks.
    If we see snakes, we don’t try to look too closely at them. We stomp in grassy country to give them a chance to disappear. We don’t go into snake haunts when it’s warm.
    We keep our lawns short.
    We don’t go into croc infested waterholes.
    We don’t disturb woodpiles without keeping a close eye on where we put our hands.
    We actually don’t have much that will actively hunt you- maybe the odd croc. Dingos are usually timid unless fed by humans, such as on Fraser island.
    You guys have bears and cougars and coyotes! Bears are scarier than anything we have.
    We went to Fiji a year ago. We were stunned to be told that pretty much nothing was poisonous.
    You could tell the Aussies- we’d see a spider and move away, quick smart, lol.
    Our American dive instructor laughed at us, when we asked about sharks. Apparently all us Aussies want to know about sharks.

    It was weird not having to be worried something might bite us.

    Oh- and that little boy, lives about 20km from me. I was concerned when I read the article that the snakes had come in to lay eggs- after all, I have found a snakeskin in a cupboard here.
    The kid just brought them in, so all good, lol.

    As for men- come to Townsville. Place is crawling with single men of all ages. Military, mining, you name it ;-)

  7. dancingcrow says:

    You have, of course, read Pratchett’s ode to Australia? The Lost Continent – one of my favorites!

  8. Sheena says:

    Please! Come on down, we’d love to have you!

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