IT began with 21 words in the paper.
‘‘Daisy’’, read a notice, in the In Memory section of the Newcastle Herald.
‘‘It has been the saddest, loneliest year of my life. I am thinking of you all the time. Love, Jock.’’
Topics doesn’t know who Daisy was, or who Jock is.
Neither does Kathy Coleman, but she’s written a song about them.
The Maitland singer-songwriter found the notice in the paper about two years ago, and was touched by its undercurrent of love and hurt.
‘‘I write on my own and I sat down, closed my eyes and thought about what Daisy must have been like for this man to love her so deeply,’’ Coleman told Topics.
‘‘I would love to find Jock, and for him to know that what he wrote really moved me.’’
The song will feature on Coleman’s third album, recorded in Nashville and due for release in a few months.
She hopes to include a photo of Daisy in the album sleeve.
Do you know who Daisy was, or Jock is? Leave a comment below or email Tim at email@example.com
Newy, the musical
(WITH apologies to The Simpsons).
It’s 2014. Plans for a topless bar at the Crown & Anchor have been shouted down.
Now a mob, armed with torches and stakes, surrounds Newcastle’s gentlemen’s club, Number Five.
Councillor Allan Robinson stands out the front, on a crate, and appeals to the mob.
‘‘Stop! We could tear it down, but we’d be tearing down a part of ourselves!’’
[Bursts into song]
‘‘You could close one of the nightclubs, or any other dive. But the heart and soul of Newy’s our beloved Number Five ...’’
[Club doors burst open. A troupe of scantily clad dancers pours onto the street. They are joined by the club madame, an imposing woman with grey hair.]
Madame: ‘‘We’re the sauce on your pie, we’re the ruling of ‘Try!’ We put the New in Newy.’’
Blonde dancer: ‘‘We’re the prawn in your cocktail.’’
Redhead dancer, high-kicking: ‘‘The road out of Windale. Yes, we put the New in Newy.’’
Madame: ‘‘We’re that little extra spice that makes existence extra nice. A giddy little thrill at a reasonable price.’’
Newcastle MP Tim Owen: ‘‘Our only major quarrel’s with your total lack of morals.’’
Charlestown MP Andrew Cornwell, to Mr Owen: ‘‘Don’t let their costumes cause you worry, I popped in the other day with Barry.’’
Madame, striding through the mob: ‘‘We’re the lime in your Corona, the meringue in your pavlova.’’
All, including mob: ‘‘We keep the New in Newy.’’
Chorus of old blokes: ‘‘We haven’t felt this much alive, since the Maitland floods of 55.’’
Cr Robinson: ‘‘To shut them down now would be twisted.’’
Kids rolling by on skateboards: ‘‘We just heard this place existed.’’
All: ‘‘We’re the last beer in your esky, another goal from Heskey. So don’t take the *boing*, we won’t take the *slide whistle*, yes, let’s keep the *cymbal crash*, in Newwweeeee!’’
The mob celebrates by rioting. The club is fined, and shuts down.
READER Ross can’t believe we haven’t followed up the revelation by reader Mark, way back on September 15, that a billboard at Adamstown said ‘‘Novacastrian’’.
‘‘Is this the correct spelling or should it be ‘Novocastrian’?’’ asked Mark, last month.
Ross, quite rightly, wants closure.
Stella Edwards, of Charlestown, has come to the rescue. She points out that it’s ‘Novocastrian’, with two Os. It’s in the Macquarie Dictionary.
‘‘Novocastrian: noun 1. someone who was born in Newcastle, NSW, or who has come to regard it as his or her home town. adjective 2. of or relating to the city of Newcastle, NSW’’.
Topics wonders how many other Australian cities get a guernsey in the pages of Macquarie.