Monday, November 20, 2023



News report:

Billionaire Andrew ‘Twiggy’ Forrest buys Akubra brand with ex-wife

After 147 years in the same family, iconic Australian hat brand Akubra has been snapped up by billionaire business tycoons Andrew ‘Twiggy’ Forrest and his ex-wife Nicola. In a bombshell multimillion-dollar deal, few had any inkling about the shock takeover until earlier this week, after the Forrest and Akubra-owning Keir families sat down together and finally signed off on the agreement. The lucrative deal between the families has been years in the making, according toThe Sunday Telegraph’s exclusive report.

Akubra has been run entirely by the one family for well over a century, when the siblings’ great-great grandfather Benjamin Dunkerly – who had a knack for machinery and hat making – left England for Tasmania in 1874.

He saw a lost business opportunity in Australia’s rabbit problem, with the animal wreaking havoc for farmers at the time, prompting culling efforts as they competed with domestic livestock for food.

By 1905, Dunkerly had hired a young Englishman with millinery prowess of his own, Stephen Keir I, who eventually married Benjamin’s daughter, Ada, and together they began a succession of Keirs at Akubra’s helm.

The handsome felt hats, made with rabbit fur, were propelled into becoming an integral part of Australia’s national identity, with Akubras going on to be given as gifts to visiting dignitaries, worn by Australia’s Olympians and military, as well as being donned by Hollywood stars.


Some pics:

Andrew 'Twiggy' Forrest and his ex-wife Nicola

Crocodile Dundee

Archbishop Mark Coleridge gifted an Akubra to Pope Francis.


And, to finish off and because Bytes has returned, a hat joke from a past Bytes post. However, it is risque . . .

From Bytes, May 5, 2017:

A few weeks ago I posted a joke recounted to me by trivia competitor and friend, John. It concerned a Jewish man buying alligator shoes. After I posted that joke John took me to task for not having told it properly, stopping just short of saying I had ruined it. He therefore sent me an email with his version.

Here are the two versions:

As I posted it –

Moshe had always wanted a pair of alligator shoes but had never been able to afford them. One day he sees a pair in the Selfridges Sale priced at only £39.99. He couldn’t believe it. They even had his size. So he buys them and proudly wears them to go home.

When he gets home, he stands in front of his wife and says, "Sadie, do you notice anything different about me?"

She looks him up and down and says, "Moshe, you look the same to me. You’re wearing the same shirt you wore yesterday and the same trousers. So you tell me, what’s different?"

But Moshe won’t give up easily. He goes into the bedroom, undresses and comes out completely naked, other than his new shoes.

Once again he stands in front of Sadie and says, "Sadie, now do you notice anything different about me?"

Once again she looks him up and down, then says, "Moshe, it looks the same to me. It's hanging down just as it was hanging down yesterday. No doubt it will be still hanging down tomorrow."

Angrily, Moshe says, "Do you know why it’s hanging down, Sadie? It’s hanging down because it’s looking directly at my new shoes!"

Sadie replies, "You should have bought a hat!"

As John sent it to me:

Hymie, a little old Jewish tailor, who has bought himself and his wife nothing in all their years together, is walking home from work when he passes a shoe shop.

There in the middle of the window is a pair of alligator skin shoes.

Hymie is smitten.

“I must have these shoes,” he says as he walks excitedly into the shop.

He tries the shoes on. They are a perfect fit.

The shop assistant offers to wrap them.

“No,” says Hymie. “I’m going to vear them home.”

On his way home, he calls out to passers-by: “Hey, lady! Look at my new shoes!” “Hey, mister! Look at my new shoes!”

He arrives home, still buoyed by the excitement of having his alligator skin shoes.

“Rachel,” he calls to his wife.

“Vot is it?” she says.

Hymie motions to her to look at him. He asks: “Vot do you see vot’s different?”

Rachel looks dismissively: “Vot do I see vot’s different? The same old balding head, the same old ugly face, the same old pot belly. Vot’s different?”

Hymie leaves the room, then returns completely naked – apart from the new shoes.

“Now, vot do you see vot’s different?” he says.

“Vot do I see vot’s different?” says Rachel. “The same old balding head, the same old ugly face, the same old pot belly, the same old limp thing hanging down.”

“Vot do you mean ‘hanging down’,” says Hymie. “It’s pointing at my new shoes.”

“Next time,” says Rachel. “Buy a new hat!”

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