Strewth, mate! It's Australia Day on 26th January, so let's celebrate with the best things to have come from the land down under!
1. Hugh Jackman
Can this man do any wrong? He acts, he sings, he dances – he’s Wolverine! Other hot Aussie actors include Heath Ledger, Simon Baker, all the Hemsworth brothers, Russell Crowe (he still does it for us!) and way back in the day, star of the silver-screen Errol Flynn.
2. Aeroplane black boxes
Invented by Aussie chemist Dave Warren in 1953.
3. Neighbours and Home Away
We all grew up watching the loves, lives, happiness and heart-breaks of the folks of Ramsay Street and Summer Bay. Who will ever forget Jason and Kylie, Madge and Harold Bishop and Mrs Mangel?
4. The language: G’Day!
Aussie slang that’s made its way into our lingo includes: drongo (you fool), fair dinkum (for real), tinnie (can of alcoholic beverage), and stubbie (short can of beer), tucker (any sort of food), budgie smuggler’s (close-fitting Speedo style men’s swimwear), stoked (excited), and ripper (rather lovely!).
5. Clear Wi-Fi
Australian scientist John O’Sullivan was conducting experiments for the CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation) when he built the technology that would be used to ‘unsmear’ Wi-Fi signals.
6. Latex gloves
First manufactured by the Australian company Ansell (though they’re still best known for making condoms!)
INXS, AC/DC, Crowded House, The Bee Gees, Men at Work, Nick Cave – and yes, Peter Andre!
5. Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
A cock in a frock from a rock.
6. Rotary clothes line
Now there’s one in almost every garden, but it was invented back in 1945 by Aussie Lace Hill, and was originally called the Hills Hoist.
9. Dual Flush toilet
The toilet with two buttons or handles to flush different levels of water was designed by Aussie inventor Bruce Thompson back in 1980.
10. Ugg boots
First made back in the 1970’s to warm the feet of Aussie surfers, now Australia’s slippers have become the world’s fashion item!
11. Awesome athletes
The Thorpedo, otherwise now as Olympic swimmer Ian Thorpe, cricket legend Shane Warne, the runner Cathy Freeman and loads of top tennis stars including Rod Laver, Ken Rosewall, Pat Cash and Evonne Goolagong Cawley.
12. Steve Irwin
The greatly loved and much missed wildlife expert, who died in 2006 from a stingray barb to his chest whilst filming a documentary.
13. The cervical cancer vaccine
Professor Ian Frazer spearheaded the research to develop the vaccine at the University of Queensland.
Native only to Australia, don’t call these cuddly animals bears – as they are not! These noctural marsupials spend their time dozing on branches, and eat only eucalyptus leaves.
16. Polymer banknotes
Made to fight counterfeiting, they were first developed in the late 80s by the Reserve Bank of Australia.
Sometimes referred to as Australia’s national food, Vegemite is a brown yeast extract spread on toast and sandwiches
18. The boomerang
Surprisingly they’ve been around for more than 25,000 years ago, and these curved, flattened throwing stick was originally used for hunting.
19. Dame Edna (housewife megastar, icon)
…and also Sir Les Patterson (Australia’s cultural attache to the Far East) – and yes, that bonza bloke Barry Humphries.