Sunday, 10 June 2012

Recycling. Getting to the bottom of it.
















All mail was attached to the door,
Of the dunny, when we were all poor.
So, having no tissue
Was never an issue.
We just used our papers once more!

McPhersons Ltd, established in Melbourne in 1860, was the leading supplier of machinery and farm supplies to rural Australasia for a hundred years. What was not commonly known, is that the secret to their success was the famous McPherson's Catalogue.
No, it was not glossy, with glamorous models and high res photos. In fact it was the opposite. Its hundreds of pages were thick, soft and absorbent. So on the backs of dunny doors on farms from Camden to Colgoorlie, from Darwin to Deniliquin, was the perfect toilet tissue, packed with information to be read by chairmen and women across the nation, while they waited for their motions to be passed.

So it was not Chinese imports, strikes, fires or floods that forced that venerable business to move its focus away from its original rural business, it was the invention of the toilet tissue. Is this story true? Defecately!

More e-rude-ecation available at Tess's House where you will find the actual dunny door as pictured above, complete with letters from her Presidential Candidates awaiting their fate. Take a look!

39 comments:

  1. I remember using squares of newspaper when we'd run out of loo paper, when I was a little kid :)
    Some of the first toilet paper I remember came in a little box and was shiny with not a lot of grip. You started off wiping your bum and ended up between your shoulder blades LOLOL!

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    1. And they were cut into tiny squares so one was forced to combine a dozen and knead them into a less useless lump!

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  2. Who could forget those newspaper pieces, tied on a string? LOL We were lucky sometimes, for mu Aunty used to bring tissue paper packing from the corset factory where she worked. Luxury!!

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    1. Lucky you, Jen. You might also remember places where one dunny was provided for a whole row of town houses, so to bridge the gap we had chamber pots under the bed! In the morning there was a queue waiting at the communal dunny door, bladders full and hands holding brimming chamber pots for disposal.

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  3. Difficult to pass judgement on which is better ... the limerick or the exlax-planation .....

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    1. To help decide, you might need to hire an expert and have a constipation.

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    2. I found this online, couldn't resist sharing: 'English lords, in attempting to teach their sons to be cultivated gentlemen, often advised purchasing an inexpensive volume of verse for use in the loo. The idea, of course, was that while you were sitting there in a contemplative state you'd be able to read a few stanzas, following which the paper could be put to other ends, so to speak."

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  4. Ha!!...needs must and all that...x

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  5. Very funny Stafford. We used to have some commercial toilet paper that was ghastly , like greaseproof paper and totally non-absorbent. The old catalogue would be preferable to that.

    BTW is it me? I can’t work out your link. It takes me to Magpie Tales, but not Tess Kincaid’s.

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    1. It is not you. It is naughty of me to refer to Tess of Willow Manor in the story, while the link is to her other bolg; Magpie Tales. My excuse is that magpies do not have dunny doors but I have it on good authority that Tess does, and her photo prompt is of her actual dunny door. If you doubt me, come back and I am sure she will verify in her comment.

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  6. Yep- good ol' Stafford trust him to get down to the basics! You are so very cleverly wired.

    The Sears Catalogue used to be a favorite in American outhouses- but I think the thin tissue like pages of the old Telephone company yellow pages would have sufficed.
    At one point I knew someone who had a "collection" of toilet paper found on their travels. Really ! Seriously!

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    1. You remind me of days when public phones were common and all had phone books. But if one was driving along looking for a phone and needed to consult the book, there was no point in stopping at one that was anywhere near bushland, unless the name you wanted started with X Y or Z!

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  7. nice laugh for this sunday... love it!

    JJRod'z

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  8. i like all the different images and textures, the high gloss photos versus the toilet paper, for example

    painting details

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  9. Ha. This is a winner….failure at the hands of invention of the toilet paper….having lived with an outhouse for a year, years ago, I understand the true value of a great catalog…smiles.

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  10. Oh dear! You and Martin are having a PUNishingly good time of it lately. I hope that story is true - it is a very absorbing tale.

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    1. It might just be a coincidence, but the timing is right.

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  11. Hey Staff i have heard it said that the biggest change in Australia over the last fifty years is that back then we used to eat inside and shit outside, nowadays it is the other way around. Brilliant funny stuff.

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    1. Piss off! You are not supposed to be funnier than me! haha!

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  12. Very interesting info, Stafford! What had worked just give more of it! 100 years you said? Gosh, cleanliness at a high point in the outback. A measure of good marketing strategy too! Recycling promoted much earlier than others! Thanks for sharing!

    Hank

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  13. nice - you really got indepth and packed it with details

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  14. Stafford dear,

    Uuurrrggghhhhh! I smelt that all the way from Malaysia.

    As you suggested, I have penned the Bahasa version for you which of course is totally different from the English and French. Can't help it. Not very flattering but seriously - Malaysian fruits and Malaysian fruit vendors are the loveliest! It is just my poem that refuses to be nice. It goes:

    Si-penjual buah - mata dah liar
    Terkedu lidah, takutkan lalat
    Membeli belah, duit dah bayar
    Balik ke rumah, rambutan berulat!

    The fruit man, eyes opened wide
    Closed his mouth in fear of flies
    Many pay for his expensive fruit
    Only to find them rotten inside!

    Have a nice day!

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  15. A perfect place for presidential aspirations. No cue cards necessary..funny as it should be!

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  16. Getting to the bottom of it...uh-huh...

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  17. Oh yes I love on the funny side today!

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  18. A good catalogue is worth its weight in gold. Terrific piece!

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  19. Defecately a brilliant post!

    Anna :o]

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  20. A crinkingly funny-all-round post, Stafford! I may print this page off for future referral!

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    1. I presume you mean to print on soft absorbent paper, and re-use of course!

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  21. Hah - nothing like a good poo story to keep things rolling and remind one how lucky we are that some things have changed ... forgotten briefly how many objects were used for wiping ... glad at least we've never gone over to picking one hand over the other ... I really would have to draw the line there I think ... great fun this

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    1. I have lived where one washes rather than wipes, and so long as the nails are kept short, it's OK. Wouldn't want to scratch oneself, would one!

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  22. oh my gosh...you would get along well with my husband.

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  23. I'm laughing out loud. I hope no one is putting the letters I have given them in the toilet ready for another use :)

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  24. Next time you visit, arrive unannounced and storm the loo. You never know what you might find behind the door!

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  25. ha! excellent word slash association play, Stafford.

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