Characters of Australia, by Greg Tingle
found in whale dreamtime (Kim Kindersley, Bunna Lawrie
and Jack Thompson)
Tingle and "Crocodile" Mick Pitman
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The land "down under"
has been the home to some amazing characters over
may ask, what is a "character"?
talking about the lovable folks who give us a
laugh, the human caricatures, telling a good joke,
or just being themselves, be it in face to face
encounters, perhaps via their antics in TV, film,
sport or in other genres.
characters can be found many places. Some have
stronger "name value" than others, some
possess no "name value" to speak of,
but when you meet them, you know who they are.
my endeavors, particularly over the past few years,
I have had the privilege and pleasure to regularly
liaise and deal with a number of characters. Some
of them are no longer with us, many are, and are
to be treasured.
take a look at some of the characters that make
up the landscape of Australia:
Mick Pitman. An authentic Crocodile Hunter from
the top end of Australia. Has been involved in
a war of words with Steve Irwin for years. Pitman
is the real deal in crocodile hunters, and enjoys
the respect of the crocodile industry, and will
go down in history as a pioneer of crocodile hunting.
A true blue Australian who remains level headed,
and who hasn't gone Hollywood.
Rafty O.A.M. - artist and caricaturist. This former
war journalist has sketched the "whose who"
of the entertainment, sports and media world.
F Adams "Crocodile Safari Man". The
original Crocodile Hunter. Produced and directed
the classic Australian documentary, "Northern
Safari", based on his travels across Australia
in a Buick!
"Crusher" Rackman - you know him as
"Donk", from the Crocodile Dundee movies.
"The Crusher" is a living legend of
the glory days of Australian World Championship
Milano - "The Italian Stallion". Another
legend of Australian professional wrestling.
Chief Little Wolf - In the Aussie wrestling rings
of yesteryear, there was no better than The Chief.
Little - The late, great, legendary sports and
professional wrestling announcer. Catch phrase
was "That's all there is folks, there isn't
any more"! Little created magic and excitement
all over the land.
"Cosy Cool" Young - Young is best known
for his producing and acting in the classic cult
film, "Cosy Cool", where he played a
"cool" biker, alongside John Wilson.
Young also produced "Nuts, Bolts & Bedroom
Springs", and the acclaimed drag racing documentary,
"Wheels On Fire". Now based in Goulburn,
NSW, he is the neighbour of the fellow who owns
"The World's Largest Steer".
Tim Bristow - Bristow passed away in 2002. Australia's
best-loved gangster / private eye.
Dusty - another great identity who passed away
(2004). Australia's legendary country music artist,
with a heart of gold. Dusty's name lives on, and
a number of community initiatives bear his name.
"Hoges" Hogan - a painter / builder
come good. Found his niche in comedy and film.
Packer (the late) - Head of Fairfax and Australia's
richest man. Love him or hate him, he's a character.
His verbal sparring matches in boardrooms across Australia
"Singo" Singleton - His media ownership
powers and public speaking engagements, see "Singo"
as a "must have" on most lists.
Markson - If there is a deal to be made, you can
bet Markson is close to the action.
Hinch - "The Human Headline" makes the
news just about every single time. Outspoken,
controversial and successful.
Adams O.A.M. - A living treasure of Australia.
Host of the ABC's "Late Night Live".
A wit and insight largely unmatched anywhere in
Mulray - A radio broadcasting legend in every
sense of the word. Amazing wit and intelligence.
"Lawsie" Laws - There's only one golden
voice of Australian radio. Has been hamming it
up for 50 years plus.
Martin - Has pretty much seen and done it all
in media. One must wonder how he really feels
about some of the less serious stories on "A
Current Affair". At his best on award ceremonies.
you can see, an eclectic mix.
some won't give us a second to forget who they
are, but others are happy to be more obscure and
to fade off into the sunset. Either way, they
are the immortals. These guys have all been manifest
and have flourished in the "lucky country".
around your local neighbourhood - there are all
manner of characters everywhere, some just happen
to be better known than others. Take a look in
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Tingle - Underbelly launch in Sydney
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