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Once again, Australia is stuck in the middle of a culture wars debate over whether or not it is appropriate, or tasteful, to celebrate the first day of what came very close to the successful genocide of Aboriginal people.
While right-wing politicians and left-wing media pundits smash this hot button issue in a quest for relevance, and boomers take to talkback radio to detest any form of change in their life since Tony Abbott was elected in 2014, The Betoota Advocate has decided to take some initiative and suggest some other iconic moments in Australian history that could replace January 26th.
The following list shows 30 possible alternative dates. While some are quite unflattering to Australia’s Crocodile Dundee lense view of itself – none are quite as distressful as the day Arthur Phillip arrived and started unloading muskets at black people.
This list is in no particular order because it is purely the result of a 20 minute brainstorm after a few beers on this lovely afternoon. We didn’t even have time to Google the dates.
Please feel free to suggest more.
#1 Millsy rooting Paris Hilton
You might see him pop up on TV from time to time. But we all know nothing else mattered in his life after he pulled Paris at her peak.
#2 Jai Taurima wins Silver at the 2001 Olympics
Some might say Cathy’s Gold Medal a couple hours after this event is of greater historical importance. But Jumpin’ Jai admittedly didn’t train that hard. Which makes his medal more impressive
#3 Lara Bingle flushes Pup’s engagement ring down the toilet
This yarn may have even been disproven since it first popped up, but if a rumour is damning enough, it remains true.
#4 Sara-Marie’s bum dance on Season 1 of Big Brother
This isn’t a particularly iconic moment, but it is memorable. This is the type of shit we used to talk about before the internet.
#5 Paul Vautin’s catch during the Alan Border Testimonial
Everyone remembers where they were when they saw Fatty’s fucking catch.
#6 Tatiana Gregoriava’s first bikini shoot
Our favourite athletics star outside of the track events. When she first graced our screens in Sydney, it was clear that FHM and Ralph would pounce. And about two months later, pounce they did. Iconic
#7 Gotye making number 1 in the US
Much like Millsy potting Paris, Gotye didn’t have to prove himself after this.
#8 Brian Brown stars in Cocktail with Tom Cruise
Brian proved to us that you could make it big in America with a thick Bankstown accent. King.
#9 Australia winning the America’s Cup
No one cares about this except Boomers. We don’t even think Hawkey cared that much. But like ACDC and Australia Day itself, when the Boomers decide something is important – the rest of us must pretend it is.
#10 Warnie’s 700th wicket
#11 Warnie roots Liz Hurley
Even better by Warnie
#12 Molly Meldrum being discharged from hospital after the ladder accident
It was touch and go for a while there, but we were very glad to get him home.
#13 James Packer fighting David Gyngell in the middle of Bondi
It’s always a good feeling when you realise that billionaires are as fucked in the head as you are.
#14 Russell Crowe punching on with NZ Warriors owner at a urinal
Same as #13. Love seeing this shit.
#15 The Crounlla Riots
Not our proudest moment, but it did provide a good boost for Scomo to win Liberal pre-selection in The Shire over his Lebanese-Australian opponent. The Riots gave us Scotty From Marketing.
#16 Darryl Brohman stacking it in a go-kart on the NRL Footy Show.
We all love the Big Marn, but what we love more than the Big Marn is laughing at his expense. That’s why they pay him the big bucks. Or that’s why they paid him the big bucks until Erin Molan replaced him
#17 The Hey Hey It’s Saturday Blackface Incident.
Again, like the Cronulla Riots, this isn’t our proudest moment. But it does mark a pivotal milestone in Australian history where Australians could no longer claim they didn’t know blackface was offensive… After the contestants received a spray from Harry Connick jnr.
#18 Black Eyed Peas hosting The ARIAS
Australians love nothing more than when Americans take notice of us. So this moment made us all feel warm and fuzzy
#19 Sonny Bill Williams’s debut for the Bulldogs
Nothing was the same in rugby league after this moment. The first player to get a haircut before each match. The first footballer to make quitting the grog and becoming a Muslim cool… With an electric shoulder charge.
#20 NSW bans smoking in pubs
Some people look back at this day with anger. But hospitality staff really do appreciate the fact that developing lung cancer is no longer part of the job.
#21 NSW wins the first and only SuperLeague Tri-Series
This was by far the most memorable moment in the Super League years, of course apart from what happened at Engadine Maccas after the 1997 Broncos Sharks final.
#22 Barnaby Joyce threatening to kill Johnny Depp’s dogs
Not bad form by the Red Rooter – one of the few times he’s been on the right side of history now that we know how Mr Depp treats women.
#23 Mark Holden’s first ‘touchdown’ on Australian Idol.
This was sheer TV entertainment. He’s a natural.
#24 The day Anthony Mundine said America ‘got what they deserved’ on live television less than two days after 9/11
Wasn’t too good for The Man’s boxing career. But yes, a very memorable moment.
#25 The day The Matrix began filming in Martin Place
Keanu must have done some serious lovemaking at this time.
#26 Paul Hogan escapes the ATO
We are all very proud of Mr Dundee. The Murdoch Media has conditioned us into thinking that it is very noble to not pay tax, even if it means we are picking up the slack.
#27 Christopher Skase escapes the country
Similar to Hogan but a bit more hectic. Good stuff by Skasey, though. He built us Port Douglas and then bailed with all our money.
#28 Gina Rinehart falls down the stairs at Melbourne Cup
Nothing like seeing the richest person in Australian and the number one contributor towards climate change have a stack in the Bird Cage. Lucky she didn’t break a leg or Vic Racing might have had to pull out the tarp.
#29 The day the cane toad was released in Queensland
Not a great moment for biodiversity, but an iconic moment. A bit like the current Australia Day.
#30 The Veronicas release “untouched”
The Queens of B-Pop. Similar to K-Pop but Brisbane. And this song slaps.
The Latham/Howard handshake
Nothing like seeing a branch stacking Labor grub get alpha’d by a frail old man. As we all know now, it certainly fucked with his head.
Nicole Kidman saying the best thing about breaking up with Tom Cruise was that now she can wear heels