Grand Years with Frank Morris

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Laughing Matter, Part 1: Why it's prescribed as the best medicine!

THE CLASSIC HOLDEN -- FX 48-215 - THE CAR EVERYBODY DREAM ABOUT.  IT WAS A SYMBOL OF A PROSPEROUS AUSTRALIA.  STORY BELOW.

Is it, or is it not, a light-hearted approach to living longer.

Adapted by Frank Morris

Lighten up! Watch a funny movie with a few friends? Or join a “laughing club” where people meet for a specific purpose for the time of their life. Or hang out with fun, playful people who laugh easily.

You find this will put you in a more positive frame of mind. Or, ask people to describe what they find funny; maybe they will ask you the same.

What you need is a big belly laugh. You cringe as the person you’re with tells another terrible joke. Maybe, if you laugh a little you’ll find that it helps in the long run.

“From generating an increase in the supply of oxygen to our body (an aerobic activity),” says Kayte Nunn, in her article, The Best Medicine, “laughter definitely packs a beneficial health punch.” Nunn goes on to suggest that when “we let out a great chuckle or even just a quiet giggle, we use up to 50 facial muscles.”

Nunn continued:

According to studies, this triggers the release of feel-good hormones, oxytocin and melatonin … which are both used in antidepressants.

Dr Tim Sharp, founder of The Happiness Institute, said, “This is almost certainly a physiological benefit. When we laugh, we release hormones and there are certain neurotransmitters in our brain that are mood-enhancing.

“This happens when you laugh naturally and even if you ‘fake it’; you can still build up the physiological response and therefore get the same benefits.”

The trick is that “when we laugh,” said Dr Sharp, “we use various muscles and activate different parts of our body, therefore this is a good form of physical activity.”  Finding something to laugh at regularly you might even stave off having a heart attack.

A study conducted in 2000 by cardiologists at the University of Maryland Medical Centre found that people with heart disease were 40 per cent less likely to laugh … compared to people without heart disease.

The study concluded that people with heart disease generally laugh less and display more anger and hostility in everyday life situations.

Part 2: Laugh! Your heart will thank you. Adapted by Frank Morris from Alive Australia magazine.

[Adapted from Kayte Nunn’s The Best Medicine in Wellplan magazine.]

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FRANK MORRIS IS ON HOLIDAYS. THE MAIN STORIES HERE ARE REPEATS. THEY ARE FROM A BACK-LOG OF ARTICLES WE HAVE PUBLISHED SINCE GRAND YEARS WAS BORN 8 YEARS AGO. IT COULD BE THE FIRST TIME YOU’LL READ THEM.
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HISTORY OF THE HOLDEN: HISTORIC FIRST-EVER FX HOLDEN IS BORN TO SUCCESS

FRANK MORRIS

When Prime Minister Ben Chifley took the wraps off the first Aussie car in 67 years he stood back and declared: “She a beauty!” The Holden family car made its debut in Victoria on November 29, 1948.

The 1200 official guests at the General Motors-Holden plant cheered as model 48-215 – later known as the FX – came down the assembly line.

The next day’s editorial in Melbourne’s Age described the occasion as “one for national self-congratulation,” adding that “the establishment in Australia of this gigantic industry … is an achievement in planning, organisation, technical capacity and the skill of many executives and artisans …”

Priced on the road at 760 pounds ($1520) the car that was advertised as “worth waiting for” was an overwhelming success. Over the next twelve months, demand exceeded supply far beyond the manufacturer’s expectations. The evolution of an Australian icon had begun.

In 1928, Australian sculptor George Raynor Hoff, heard the fable of the invention of the wheel and immortalised it in his redesign of the Holden emblem. The Holden logo has since changed several times, evolving into the iconic brand we are all familiar with today.

“We love football, meat pies, kangaroos and Holden cars …” was a song we would sing just about every time we saw a Holden -- “Holden’s never die”! Holden refused to fade away. It is still popular, more so now that the building of Holden is no more.

How times flies! The Holden bows out in 2016.

TOP PHOTO: HISTORIC: MR BEN CHIFLEY, PRIME MINISTER, (FAR LEFT) CAN ONLY GAZE AT THE FIRST-EVER HOLDEN CAR AS IT SPARKLING OFF-WHITE SHIMMERS UNDER THE LIGHTS. THE CHIFLEY YEARS ARE BEST KNOWN FOR THE HOLDEN CAR. “IT WAS THE SYMBOL OF A BRIGHT AND PROSPEROUS AUSTRALIA,” WROTE THE BULLETIN. TEXT: PRIME MINISTER CHIFLEY WITH HIS PRIDE AND JOY … THE HOLDEN CHECK-UP.*

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TIT-BITS: Marilyn Monroe sent out these quotable quotes! The movies. There are all make believe! … If I’d observed all the rules, I’d never have got anywhere! … I’m very definitely a woman and I enjoy it … I don’t know who invented high heels, but all women owe him a lot … I don’t mind living in a man’s world – just as long as I can be a woman in it. – FM.

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THE POWER OF THE BOOK: FINAL! MY ‘UNPUTDOWNABLE’ NOVEL AND OTHER EVENTS!

FRANK MORRIS

“Women are inspired.” Miles Franklin was a literary icon and is recognised as one of the twelve most influential Australian writers of all-time. Unfortunately, in this day and age, most Australians are likely to be more familiar with the film of My Brilliant Career than they are with the book itself.

But, largely, that was the novel that put her there. I remember ringing the publisher to see if she could gather how far-reaching is the novel’s philosophy with its readers, particularly when the author is only nineteen.

“Women are”, opines the leading publisher, “inspired by Sybylla’s strength and vision.” American academic, Harold Bloom, lists My Brilliant Career/Miles Franklin among his top writers. Bloom called her a “top Australian”.

I had an admiration for Miles Franklin since when she paid homage to Henry Lawson and read the opening speech at the Lawson statue event. She did it for the help Lawson gave her for getting My Brilliant Career published overseas. It was rejected earlier on by an Aussie publisher.

Don’t hold to the words, but he said to Lawson that is was a “serious” blunder that caused the rejection of the manuscript. Later on, the publisher picked up My Brilliant Career and other titles by the same author.

About three, maybe four, times a year I visit a small cottage in Grey Street, Carlton, NSW, where Miles Franklin lived out her days. I have been making these pilgrimages for more years than I can remember.

Her cottage, Wambrook, was a modest weatherboard dwelling, set on the low side of the street, which she sometimes referred to as “my shabby old humpy.” When I makes these visits I enjoy my reveries from the other side of the street.

Although, I have been tempted to annoy the current occupants on occasions. I’ve always wanted to have a peek inside and see how it has changed; if it has changed at all. For me, Franklin’s books did what they promised: to know, to cherish and to believe in Australian literature.

Her unbridled enthusiasm, her hectoring – not to mention her staunch nationalism – gave me a greater, more rounded understanding of the wonderful writers. That is the power of the book. Miles Franklin passed away in a private hospital in 1954.

ILLUSTRATION: YOUNG MILES: LAWSON SAID THAT THE REJECTION OF HER NOVEL WAS A SERIOUS “BLUNDER” … FRANKLIN’S FACE ALWAYS HAD ENERGY AND SPARK.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 18 September 15

Waves – For the surfer or body-swimmer, they have got to be just right

The shape and direction of the waves are of the utmost importance.

Adapted by Frank Morris

 

Ocean waves have always held a fascination for people the world over.

For the surfer and body-swimmer, the shape and direction of the waves are of the utmost importance. For the ultimate in enjoyment the wave has got to be just right.

The action of water and the principles of water movement and pressure have been researched by eminent scientists as far back as the 18th century. The results of their investigations revealed that the speed of waves was directly related to the speed of the wind which caused them.

To gain some idea of the character of ocean waves, it is worthwhile to ponder on the following definitions:

SEA – the actual disturbance of the water generated by the prevailing wind and the direction of the wind blowing at the observer.

SWELL – a system of waves not generated by the prevailing wind … but generated by a wind at some distance from the observer. This wind could have been apparent days ago, some thousands of kilometres away.

LENGTH – the distance from the crest of the wave to the crest of the one behind it.

HEIGHT – the vertical distance of the crest above the bottom of the trough on either side.

PERIOD – the interval between the passages of two successive crests past a given point.

SPEED – the apparent rate at which the crests advance.

For our purposes, we can ignore waves caused by earthquakes and submarine disturbances. We are concerned here with wind generated waves only, as these are the most important.

When the wind blows over the sea, downward moving eddies in the air stream press down and disturb the surface of the water.

It will readily be seen that if the pressure of the air stream varies, as it invariably does, ‘trains’ of disturbances of varying characteristics will be generated on the surface of the water. These are called waves.

An interesting feature of the wave is the fact that the water itself does not move forward to any extent, although the wave itself advances. It is predominantly the SHAPE of the wave which advances.

The particles describe an approximate circle moving forward in the crest, backward in the trough, upward in the approaching crest and downward in the receding crest.

This rotation motion of the water particles creates friction which tends to reduce the height of the wave. However, although the water particles do not move forward in their own right, they do not return exactly to their former position.

Correct. They return to a position slightly forward in the direction which the wave is travelling. This action creates a weak current in the direction of travel.

This is part 1 of Waves. Part 2 will run early next year.

[Adapted from Electronics Australia.]

The Champs: Cook “blazed” a trail on the turf

Adapted by Frank Morris

One of Australia’s most respected and popular jockeys, Bill Cook, “blazed” the trail for many others of the nation’s leading hoops to ride in England.

In his colourful and illustrious career, Cook won two Melbourne Cups – Skipton in 1941 and Rainbird in 1945 – and a Caulfield Cup in 1930 on Amounis. He also booted home winners in a score of other major classics, including 4 Derbys, 2 Sydney Cups and 3 Metropolitans.

Cook, or “Cookie” as he was affectionately called by the racing public, made a habit of rewriting the record book. He was the first jockey ever to ride 100 winners in a racing season.

In 1939-40, he created a long-standing record of 123 winners and 3 dead-heats. And, in 1951, he rode five successive winners at a Randwick meeting.

It is little wonder that punters tagged him “The Champ.”

In 1949, he arrived in England unannounced and with very few prospects. He was an immediate sensation. In only two months, Cook landed 43 winners, finishing in second place behind Sir Gordon Richards in the jockey’s premiership.

And for this effort, he gained several riding commissions from the late King George VI.

Cook was a magnificent hand-and-heel rider and had an uncanny judge of pace. His son, Peter, was a leading apprentice. Cook jr was one of the top-ranking jockeys riding in Australia. Cookie died in 1985.

[Adapted from Cab Talk, 1984.]

Remember When: William Arnott – “king” of the biscuit trade

He worked, scrimped and saved. “I’ll start all over again,” Arnott said.

Frank Morris 

William Arnott, born in Scotland in 1827, was apprenticed as a young lad and earned half a crown a week – twenty-five cents. In Australia, the name Arnott is synonymous with biscuits. In 1908, the Arnotts family set up a permanent factory in Homebush, NSW.

When the young 20-year-old Arnott migrated to Australia, he baked loaves and pastries for the goldminers until he had enough money to establish a shop in West Maitland, NSW.

Soon he had a thriving business among the coal miners. But disaster struck and his business was ruined in a flood. A few months later his wife died.

It seems like enough to stop many men, but not William Arnott. He worked, scrimped and saved. “I’ll start all over again,” Arnott said.

In 1865, he opened his business in the heart of Newcastle and married again. His five sons learnt the baking trade, and later, became partners in the business.

By 1870, William’s biscuits were in such demand that he had to build a new factory. But, however, time marches on. Now, his plant was driven by mechanical power.

When the Newcastle to Sydney rail-link was opened in 1889, Arnott opened a depot in Sydney. Within five years, a new Sydney plant was operating.

William Arnott died, aged 74, in 1901.

In 1908, the Homebush biscuit plant, the largest in Southern Hemisphere, was completed. The company, Arnott’s Biscuit, was so successful as an Australian firm, that it was taken over by the American soup company, Campbell’s, in 1997.

While many varieties of biscuits have been developed over the years, one of William Arnott’s best-selling favourites was Milk Arrowroot. It’s still popular in Australia today – over 100 years since it was first baked.

[Reprinted from Best Years, Est 1999, New Series No 28.]

 

FRANK MORRIS’ COMING ATTRACTION …

There’s a whole host of big surprises in store for next year. Plus, there are also many top features on famous people and characters that will be coming your way. Here are some examples: Best Years will be coming back in a different format as sponsor. It will bring us features we love to read, like: Sherlock Holmes; Becky London, Jack London’s daughter; C. J. Dennis, who wrote The Sentimental Bloke, and several others.

Grand Years will run right through the year. Have a very Happy Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 24 December 14

Laughing Matter: The health benefits! Why is it prescribed as the best medicine!

Is it, or is it not, a light-hearted approach to living longer.
Adapted by Frank Morris

Lighten up! Watch a funny movie with a few friends? Or join a “laughing club” where people meet for a specific purpose for the time of their life. Or hang out with fun, playful people who laugh easily.

You find this will put you in a more positive frame of mind. Or, ask people to describe what they find funny; maybe they will ask you the same.

What you need is a big belly laugh. You cringe as the person you’re with tells another terrible joke. Maybe, if you laugh a little you’ll find that it helps in the long run.

“From generating an increase in the supply of oxygen to our body (an aerobic activity),” says Kayte Nunn, in her article, The Best Medicine, “laughter definitely packs a beneficial health punch.” Nunn goes on to suggest that when “we let out a great chuckle or even just a quiet giggle, we use up to 50 facial muscles.”

Nunn continued:

According to studies, this triggers the release of feel-good hormones, oxytocin and melatonin … which are both used in antidepressants.

Dr Tim Sharp, founder of The Happiness Institute, said, “This is almost certainly a physiological benefit. When we laugh, we release hormones and there are certain neurotransmitters in our brain that are mood-enhancing.

“This happens when you laugh naturally and even if you ‘fake it’; you can still build up the physiological response and therefore get the same benefits.”

The trick is that “when we laugh,” said Dr Sharp, “we use various muscles and activate different parts of our body, therefore this is a good form of physical activity.”  Finding something to laugh at regularly you might even stave off having a heart attack.

A study conducted in 2000 by cardiologists at the University of Maryland Medical Centre found that people with heart disease were 40 per cent less likely to laugh … compared to people without heart disease.

The study concluded that people with heart disease generally laugh less and display more anger and hostility in everyday life situations.

Part 2: Laugh! Your heart will thank you. Adapted by Frank Morris from Alive Australia magazine.

[Adapted from Kayte Nunn’s The Best Medicine in Wellplan magazine.]

TELEPHONE LINKED WITH HISTORY …

1972: The ‘Wallfone’ – After 23 years, Labor got in! For the first time in 23 years, the Australian Labor Party won the federal election in December, 1972. By electing Gough Whitlam as Prime Minister, there became two Australias – one before Gough and one after Gough. The “one after Gough” became the country that started to grow up. Whitlam’s legacy endured almost four decades later. Initially, he served the country as part of a two-member team, starting the ball rolling: there was then the three years that he was in to bat, he took Australia by the neck and shook it. And out it came! Improvements in education, indigenous affairs, healthcare, foreign affairs and several other mammoth changes. But in the end, Gough Whitlam damaged the economy by the absence “of any prime ministerial control.” Governor-General Sir John Kerr, in 1975, sacked the Whitman Government to save “Australia from the political deadlock where it was heading.” After the dismissal, Whitlam stood on the steps of Old Parliament House, and let forth his condemnation of Kerr: “Well may we say God save the Queen because nothing will save the Governor-General.” He rallied people to maintain the rage. Whitlam failed in the 1977 election and retired from Parliament. He died aged 98 on October 21, 2014 … The Celsius scale of temperature was adopted in place of Fahrenhiet … Australia’s short take-off and landing plane, the Nomad, was born; it boosted the country’s aviation industry. FM.

Australian Spiders: Deadly, venomous and low-risk

REDBACK spiders are found throughout Australia. They have many habitats, including urban areas and they often hide in dry, sheltered places such as garden sheds, mailboxes and under toilets seats. About 2000 bites are reported each year and an estimated 250 people receive antivenom. The redback antivenom became available in the 1950s and no death has been reported since. FEMALE REDBACK spiders give the most serious bite. They measure about 1 cm long – bigger than males – and are recognisable by the familiar red stripe on their back. Their venom affects the nervous system which is dangerous for humans. Their small fangs make many of the bites ineffective. The main symptom is severe and persistent pain and can last hours, even days depending on a person’s sensitivity to the venom. Other symptoms may include nausea, malaise and lethargy. CUPBOARD spiders are often mistaken for redbacks. They produce similar symptoms but their venom is less potent; the redback venom is effective against these bites. [Adapted from Australian Geographic.]

FAMILY HISTORY: Part 1. Irish records – Wills, census and other registers have survived!

In the 1922 uprising, many records were destroyed during the bombardment of the Four Courts.

Adapted by Frank Morris

The family historian researching Irish ancestry faces a number of problems.

First, the majority of the population was Roman Catholic and their registersl did not begin until late in the 18th century. Second, is the relatively few number of surnames shared by most of the population. Third, is that the Irish Public Records Office, housed in Dublin at the Four Courts, was destroyed in 1922 by protestors against British rule.

Only a few of the contents, which included about half the Church of Ireland parish registers, census returns, wills and others government records, survived.

BMD and other records after 1922 are complete but, as the country was then divided into two, these and other records are in different places.

Civil registration of all BMD began in Ireland in 1864. But non-Catholic marriages were registered only from 1845 onward. The partition of Ireland has meant duplication of material between the two General Register Offices. Records up to 1922 are held in the General Register (GRO) in Dublin.  

After that date, it hold copies of records in Northern Ireland.

The GRO in Belfast – Northern Ireland – is a separate register office which holds BMD records for Northern Ireland from 1922 onwards and copies indexes to pre-1922 events. There are also Marine, Consular and Foreign Marriage Registers of BMD relating to Irish people at sea or overseas in both offices.

After 1922, laws on registration of events – such as stillbirths, adoptions and illegitimate children – were different in Eire and Northern Ireland.

Parish Registers, like the Church in Ireland, served a small percentage of the population, mainly the Protestant middle and upper classes. As mentioned, about half their registers from before 1870 had been deposited in the Dublin Public Record Office and were destroyed.

However, others had remained in their own churches; some transcripts of these had been made before the registers were surrendered, and others had already been published. The surviving material, in addition to the parish accounts and other documents, are scatted among various locations.

Between 1915 and 1922, proof of age in order to claim benefits might be extracted from the Church of Ireland parish register; the parents’ names are preserved in the National Archives.

Most baptisms and marriages of Roman Catholics are contained in the priest’s home or in the home of the family. Catholic registers did not begin until the middle of the 18th century in towns. In the 19th century it was in the rural areas.

Some burials of Catholics took place in Church of Ireland burial grounds, depending on the attitude of the minister.

Other denominations, such as the Nonconformists – Baptists, Congregationalists, Huguenots, Lutherans, Methodists. Moravians, Presbyterians and Quakers—and Jews, kept their own records. Although all the original registers of the Huguenot churches were destroyed in 1922, they had already been published.

Other records are deposited in various archives; or remain with their congregations. Many have also been copied.

Part 2: Wills. Land records, interpreting the law and researching Irish ancestors will be published in February 2015.

[Family History Made Easy; Kathy Chater; Anness Publishing Ltd, London.]

FRANK MORRIS’ COMING ATTRACTION …

2015: The family tree is a life saver … Good years -- 100 years old but what’s their secret? Personality may be more important than good genes … Flavour tips for tea drinkers … The right and wrongs of first aid … Einstein’s genius – brain photos reveal clues … Knee surgery, 2 parts … Ten tips before you die.

GRAND YEARS RUNS RIGHT THROUGH THE YEAR. MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 19 December 14

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