From The Age:
Forget moccasins and VB, today’s bogans prefer plasmas, diet colas, Twilight and Two and a Half Men.
IN ONE of those rare instances of cosmic alignment, the release of Things Bogans Like, a blog-cum-book that documents the modern Australian yob, coincided with the birth of Lleyton and Bec Hewitt’s third child.
”It was very good timing,” says Michael Jayfox, one of the book’s six pseudonymously named authors, ”and it’s possible that we’ve never been needed more than we are right now.”
It wasn’t the birth per se that caught his attention, however; it was the manner in which the baby’s name was announced: via a paid SMS subscription service called ”Text A Star”. (In the unlikely event you’re not a subscriber, it’s ”Ava Sydney Hewitt”.)
But wait – ”Ava Sydney” does not conform to standard bogan naming regulations. It’s not a common surname that has been misspelt, for one, nor is it laden with superfluous vowels or consonants (think Bry-annah, Jackxsyn, Alexziyah). So can it really be classed as a bogan moniker? ”Let’s start with ‘Sydney’,” says Jayfox. ”We did some research and found that Lleyton was playing in Sydney nine months ago, which suggests she was named after the city in which she was conceived.
”And while ‘Ava’ is a potentially non-bogan name, Reese Witherspoon, Hugh Jackman and Heather Locklear have all called their babies ‘Ava’ in [recent] years, so it is an aspirational celebrity name.
”Finally, it’s a great tattoo name: it has nice, angular letters; it’s short and it’s a palindrome. If Lleyton were to get it tattooed onto himself, he’d be able to read it while looking in the mirror.”
Jayfox should know, given he and his co-authors – all men in their 20s with professional jobs – have become our foremost bogan experts since launching their website last year. ”It started in the pub one Friday night,” he explains. ”Something must have happened that day that made us a bit dismayed with the ways of the bogan. We ended up compiling a list and that became thingsboganslike.com.” Several months later, they were offered a book deal.
Tribal Tatts to Reality TV – How to Recognise the Twenty-First Century Bogan
By E. Chas McSween, Enron Hubbard, Flash Johnson, Hunter McKenzie-Smythe, Intravenus DeMilo and Michael Jayfox.
The word bogan has a bad rap; first impressions are still associated with flannelette, VB, utes and mullets. But this would be wrong. The bogan has advanced and needs new explanation, evolution has cursed (or blessed, depending on your thinking) us with a modern version. The bogan with money. The bogan with aspirations. The bogan with Ed Hardy t-shirts. The new bogan will not rest until it owns a plasma TV so large that Rove McManus becomes six feet tall for the first time.
Today’s bogan defies income, class, race, creed, gender, religion and logic. Now the bogan is defined by what it does, what it says and, most importantly, what it buys. Those who choose to deny the bogan on the basis of their North Shore home, their stockbroking career or their massive trust fund choose not to see the real bogan. Many bogans are affluent and perhaps are working in that same stockbroking firm and sharing a Corona with you over Friday night drinks. They set themselves apart by their efforts to stand out by conforming as furiously, and conspicuously, as possible.
The authors, six self-confessed snobs, have drawn on their friends, family, neighbours, workmates and that guy who always jumps the queue at the bar, to show the evolution of the ‘much-loved’ Australian bogan, their modern desires, and how we can either join them or mock them. This will be a groundbreaking sociological publication and, far more importantly, the perfect Christmas gift for anyone who has ever bought a Buddhist-themed water feature, Ed Hardy t-shirt or watched Today Tonight.
About the Authors:
The six self-confessed snobs responsible for this maxtreme study are:
Intravenus De Milo: Now living in Australia, smug in the satisfaction that he is pretty much the smartest person in the country.
Melbourne and San’s Yemen based Hunter McKenzie-Smythe: Completed an Arts degree and skied the world until experiencing an epiphany and converted to Sunni Islam.
Flash Johnson: Born from an egg on a Peruvian mountaintop in 1986, Flash set sail for Australia – the site of the world’s most advanced bogan colony and now resides in Melbourne.
Enron Hubbard: Since his arrest for civil unrest while defending battery hens, militant vegan Ron lives as a hermit, fearful of reprisals from angry bogans who value their low-cost, high-quantity egg and poultry goods.
E. Chas McSween: Adopted at the age of eight, by visiting celebrity bogan Greg Evans and relocated to a household full of Ken Done prints and Jive Bunny CDs.
Michael Jayfox: From the lush, bogan habitat of Victoria’s Latrobe Valley. Initially planning to sell the bogan maxtreme products that it didn’t need, he became distracted by the study of bogan creature itself, and began writing of its ways.
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About the Contributor
While still in his twenties, John Purcell opened a second-hand bookshop in Mosman, Sydney, in which he sat for ten years reading, ranting and writing. Since then he has written, under a pseudonym, a series of very successful novels, interviewed hundreds of writers about their work, appeared at writers’ festivals, on TV (most bizarrely in comedian Luke McGregor’s documentary Luke Warm Sex) and has been featured in prominent newspapers and magazines. Now, as the Director of Books at booktopia.com.au, Australia’s largest online bookseller, he supports Australian writing in all its forms. He lives in Sydney with his wife, two children, three dogs, five cats, unnumbered gold fish and his overlarge book collection.