Gender imbalances a talking point

 IT’S something half of us have long suspected and the other half has always denied.

 Women talk more than men.

In fact, women talk almost three times as much, on average 20,000 words a day, compared with men’s 7000.

 Women also speak more quickly, devote more brainpower to chit-chat and get a buzz out of hearing their own voices, a female psychiatrist suggests.

She says the disparity is caused by differences in men’s and women’s brains with women having an eight-lane superhighway for processing emotion while men have a small country road.

 And there’s more.

 She says the sex hormone testosterone, responsible for moulding the male brain as a baby, reduces the size of the part of the brain involved in hearing which allows men to become ‘deaf’ to the most logical arguments put forward by women.

Could we regard that as being misandrous?

What do you think fellers?

Popular baby names

OLD favourites John and Margaret are the most popular male and female names in our history, according to a search of baby names going back to 1790.

 Around 261,000 babies have been called John in the past 220 years, more than 65,000 ahead of second-placed David and more than 150,000 ahead of girls' favourite Margaret.

The name John peaked in popularity in the 1940s although its popularity dropped off in the 2000s with Jack taking over as most favoured.

When it comes to the girls, Margaret tops the poll with 96,458 but Sarah (81,195), Elizabeth (77,239) and Mary (75,006) are not too far behind in a close top 10.

 None of the all-time top 10 makes the latest most popular list, overtaken by the more fashionable Chloe’s and Ava’s and Sienna’s.

Government figures show we’ve chosen 112,689 different names between 1790 and 2011 with 76,459 female and 46,230 male.

But there’s been 50 boys called Sharon and girls named George, David, John, Stephen and Trevor.

 Basil, Cecil, Agnes and Eunice have gone by the wayside.

The most popular baby names registered in NSW now are William, Lucas, Lachlan, Ethan, Oliver, Jack, Noah, Thomas, Joshua and Cooper in the boys and Chloe, Ruby, Olivia, Isabella, Mia, Charlotte, Sophie, Sienna, Ava and Amelia in the girls.

English ancestry

THE  next time you go off about whingeing Poms, you should note that nearly a third of Orange people have English ancestry.

Census figures show Australian ancestry topped the list for 33.6 per cent of Orange people followed by English 30 per cent, Irish 9.8 per cent, Scottish 6.9 per cent and German 2.8 per cent.

 And 85.3 per cent of us were born in Australia.

  The other most common countries of birth were England 1.6 per cent, New Zealand 1.1 per cent, Philippines 0.4 per cent, India 0.4 per cent and South Africa 0.3 per cent.

 In Orange 79.5 per cent of people had both parents born in Australia and 11.7 per cent of people had both parents born overseas.

 So we’re a bit of a melting pot.

 Colorbond capital

 ORANGE can add another dubious title to its list: The Colorbond fence capital of the world.

It’s everywhere you look and it’s not the best look, either, in some places resembling jail walls.

Lots of councils have banned Colorbond fences, especially when it can be seen from the street, and favour timber or brick or a combination of both.

 Albury won’t allow it in new subdivisions and neither will the new Pindari estate at Tamworth, which says the covenant was put in place to ensure housing reflected the prestigious nature of the development and to blend housing more naturally into the environment.

 Sydney councils like Parramatta have Colorbond bans in place and Penrith also gives it a miss.

 But it’s open slather in Orange and the stuff is everywhere you look, particularly in the new areas, which is a shame.

 It’s probably OK to use for backyards but fronting the street is pretty ugly and the council should do something rather than allowing hundreds of miles of this stuff to go up.

 Colorbond also thrives along the distributor road.

People with a Colorbond fence could tart it up with some treated pine lattice or screen it with some greenery.

That would make a huge difference.

 Middy strength

FOR we responsible drinkers, let’s hope Orange pubs don’t send middy glasses to the rubbish dump like they’re doing in Sydney.

 They reckon the days are gone when a bartender asks what size you want and instead just serves up a 425ml schooner.

Some Sydney pubs have got rid of the middy entirely and that’s pretty sad.

 The publicans say the margins work out better for them, there’s more beer and people see more value in a schooner.

But if you’re having a few beers after work, two schooners puts you on the limit while you can drink three middies and still be safe.

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