Campaigning in a Land Down Under

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men at work

I love Australia, and I have enjoyed New Zealand on two separate election-related visits.

I also (being a child of the 80s) love Men At Work (and 90% of Australian 80s rock, a truly golden age of Aussie music).

Understanding local culture is an essential foundation for anyone who wants to understand politics. Here are the words to the unofficial Australian anthem, because everyone should know it (courtesy of http://www.songlyrics.com/men-at-work/land-downunder-lyrics/)

Travelling in a fried-out combie
On a hippie trail, head full of zombie
I met a strange lady, she made me nervous
She took me in and gave me breakfast

And she said, “Do you come from a land down under?
Where women glow and men plunder?
Can’t you hear, can’t you hear the thunder?
You better run, you better take cover”

Buying bread from a man in Brussels
He was six foot four and full of muscle
I said, “Do you speak a my language?”
He just smiled and gave me a vegemite sandwich

And he said, “I come from a land down under
Where beer does flow and men chunder
Can’t you hear, can’t you hear the thunder?
You better run, you better take cover”
(Yeah)

Dying in a den in Bombay
With a slack jaw, and nothin’ much to say
I said to the man, “Are you trying to tempt me
Because I come from the land of plenty?”

And he said, “Oh, you come from a land down under?
(Oh, yeah, yeah)
Where women glow and men plunder?
Can’t you hear, can’t you hear the thunder?
(Ooh)
You better run, you better take cover”

We are livin’ in a land down under
Where women glow and men plunder
(Yeah)
Can’t you hear, can’t you hear the thunder?
(Thunder)
You better run, you better take cover

Livin’ in a land down under
Where women glow and men plunder
Can’t you hear, can’t you hear the thunder?
(Ooh yeah)
Then I run and then I take cover
(Yeah)

We are livin’ in a land down under
(Under)
Where women glow and men plunder
Can’t you hear, can’t you hear the thunder?
(Ooh da da laa yeah)
Then I run, then I take cover

We are livin’ in a land down under
(Under)
Where women glow and men plunder
Can’t you hear, can’t you hear the thunder?
(Ooh da da laa yeah)
Then I run, then I take cover

We are livin’ in a land down under
(Under)
Where women glow and men plunder
Can’t you hear, can’t you hear the thunder?
(Ooh da da laa yeah)
Then I run, then I take cover

men-at-work-down-under-epic-3

And here’s a link to the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfR9iY5y94s

OK, here are the words to the official Australian anthem (including the much-ignored but absolutely vital second verse)

Verse 1

Australians all let us rejoice,

For we are young and free;

We’ve golden soil and wealth for toil;

Our home is girt by sea;

Our land abounds in nature’s gifts

Of beauty rich and rare;

In history’s page, let every stage

Advance Australia Fair.

In joyful strains then let us sing,

Advance Australia Fair.

Verse 2

Beneath our radiant Southern Cross

We’ll toil with hearts and hands;

To make this Commonwealth of ours

Renowned of all the lands;

For those who’ve come across the seas

We’ve boundless plains to share;  <<I’m surprised this line hasn’t been deleted by our current Prime Minister http://www.dfat.gov.au/facts/nat_anthem.html>>

With courage let us all combine

To Advance Australia Fair.

In joyful strains then let us sing,

Advance Australia Fair.

 

The words to Waltzing Matilda (another unofficial Australian national anthem) probably needs a few hours of explanation for unsuspecting tourists, but here it is anyway …

Once a jolly swagman camped by a billabong
Under the shade of a coolibah tree,
And he sang as he watched and waited till his billy boiled:
“Who’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me?”

Waltzing Matilda, waltzing Matilda
You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me
And he sang as he watched and waited till his billy boiled:
“You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me.”

Down came a jumbuck to drink at that billabong.
Up jumped the swagman and grabbed him with glee.
And he sang as he shoved that jumbuck in his tucker bag:
“You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me.”

Waltzing Matilda, waltzing Matilda
“You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me”,
And he sang as he shoved that jumbuck in his tucker bag:
“You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me.”

Up rode the squatter, mounted on his thoroughbred.
Down came the troopers, one, two, and three.
“Whose[N 1] is that [N 2] jumbuck you’ve got in your tucker bag?
You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me.”

Waltzing Matilda, waltzing Matilda
“You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me”,
“Whose is that jumbuck you’ve got in your tucker bag?
You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me.”

Up jumped the swagman and sprang into the billabong.
“You’ll never take me alive!” said he
And his ghost may be heard as you pass by that billabong:
“Who’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me?”

Waltzing Matilda, waltzing Matilda
“You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me”,
And his ghost may be heard as you pass by that billabong:
“Who’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me?”

Short explanation for non-Australians: this song is about a homeless guy who steals jumbuck (sheep), presumably for tucker (i.e. food), and then drowns himself in a billabong (creek). More info here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waltzing_matilda

I should find the words to the New Zealand national anthem as well… For the time being I’m happy to sing this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M0pWejAnLUQ

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