Larrikin Tales of the Brisbane Valley: Vol 1

Larrikin Tales of the Brisbane Valley: Vol 1

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As a Christmas present to the region at the end of 2005, Brisbane Valley Heritage Trails recorded a few of the larrikin stories that were well known in each of the communities from which our members came – so well known that the subjects of these stories could be instantly identified.  Since that time many of the participants have gone although anonymity can never be assured as we conscientiously acknowledge the source of the stories where we can.

This first volume was dedicated to the late Councillor for Nanango, Kevin Allery, so the early stories are his. To cope with a bully in his school you needed a good story, a hat, a phantom cockatoo and some fresh cow pooh.  Its application to cyber-bulllying is as yet untested.  And a dead black snake on a school path beats a polite introduction to the prettiest girls hand down for a local larrikin who can tell a good story with a straight face.

But we must feel sorry for the lad who was asked to put some more wood in the copper for the Lutheran Ladies Guild in Cooyar before they had electricity for serving tea.  He did exactly as he was told – putting it within the copper without benefit to the fire below or the taste of the tea.  There is also the dog trainer who regularly phoned his dog to join him in the pub and the fair to middling school boy tennis player called Sonny at Nukku who became Roy Emerson.  The pet pig that refused to share her human  family at a town Christmas party deserves mention as well as the pub with its bar at street level and a long tradition of serving men and their horses there until at least 1980.  The names of one family at Mt. Stanley could almost be sung: Jimmy, Jacky, Joey, Eddie, Weddie, Freddy and Frank, and ‘flood food’ for a parsimonious settler there who expected to be flooded for a week consisted solely of one loaf of bread and a tin of plum jam.

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