If ever there was a case for underground power lines, it’s the annual butchering of street trees now going on in Orange.
If you tried, you couldn’t possibly make a street look uglier than hacking the middle out of rows of trees to clear the power lines.
It’s the best argument yet for going underground although that’s not likely to happen in the established areas because of the cost.
But at least development approval in new areas makes it mandatory.
Underground lines are safer, more secure in severe weather and remove the need for radical tree hacking, which results in a far better streetscape.
They also reduce safety hazards caused by fallen lines and don’t become a target for out-of-control car drivers who have a habit of crashing into them.
Power authorities say damage to underground cables is harder to locate, more difficult to access and takes longer to repair.
They say overhead lines at around six times cheaper are the best value for money and deliver low electricity prices for customers.
That’s got to be a joke, surely.
No luck with pronunciation
City slickers often have a problem mispronouncing country names like Can-o-win-dra, Cuddle or Canno-bolas but now our Orange radio stations are having a run on calling Lucknow Luck-NOW.
So if you want to get a lively argument going, ask people what they think is the correct pronunciation of the former gold mining village.
There’s always been mixed views but the correct way is definitely Luck-no. That’s backed up by dictionaries including online talking dictionary of English pronunciation howjsay.com and locals.
A mine bookkeeper named our Lucknow in 1863 after Lucknow in India where there had been a long military siege and he may have been wounded there.
The Indian city is the capital of the Uttar Pradesh state and is home for 4.58 million people, a few more than our Lucknow.
But there’s people who offer the simpler explanation the local name was a reference to the good fortune the settlement had with its gold, hence luck now.
One of the Indian Lucknow’s claim to fame was that Harry Rodger Webb, better known to us as British pop singer and Shadows leader Cliff Richard, was born there to Rodger Oscar Webb, a manager for an Indian Railways catering contractor, and his wife Dorothy Marie Dazely.
And contrary to some belief, Lucknow India has no gold mining with its main economy linked to government employees and electronics.
A district doctor had a reputation for always catching huge fish.
One day while he was on one of his fishing trips he got a call that one of his patients on a neighbouring farm was about to give birth.
He rushed there and delivered a healthy baby boy.
The farmer had nothing to weigh the baby so the doctor got his fishing scales out of his car and used them.
The baby weighed 15kg.
Those blue headlights on cars are a total pain in the neck.
You can’t see a bloody thing when a car fitted with these after-market searchlights blinds you for the rest of the night.
They fall roughly into three groups: high intensity discharge (HID), aftermarket HID conversions and halogen lamps that have had some types of aftermarket globes installed. Sometimes they’re called xenon or bi-xenon lamps.
But how the work experience people at the Roads and Traffic Authority or Roads and Maritime Services, whatever it’s called this month, allows them we’ll never know.
The excessively glary lights dazzle other road users and create dangerous situations yet apparently they’re quite okay otherwise the coppers would be out there handing out tickets left right and centre to Orange drivers, who seem to love them.
And why is it legal now to use high beam in town?
Make your vote count
With council elections only several weeks off, it’s uncannily quiet on the campaign front although things will no doubt hot up.
People should take their vote seriously and work out beforehand who they want to represent them rather than regard the election as just another weekend distraction and get it over as quickly as possible by marking a couple of boxes on top of the line.
Pick out the candidates you think haven’t got an axe to grind and give them your vote.
It’s interesting to note the old anti-Communist Democratic Labor Party are fielding candidates at Lithgow after distancing themselves from Labor which they describe as being too green.