The 1960s - Everyday Issues

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Like equal pay, affordable housing was a perennial subject for revues such as You’ve Never Had It So Good:

There’s been a housing shortage since 1944

The Government keeps saying there isn’t any more

They’re building plenty of houses in Sydney town today

But oh! Such fancy prices we can’t afford to pay.


Old Bob says he will get you the love nest of your dreams –

Two-fifty smackers seems a lot in anybody’s schemes

And those whose bank accounts refuse to multiply

Will have the full deposit when they’re just about to die.


Put your name down with the Housing and watch your family grow,

They’ll all of them be married before you raise the dough,

But don’t be pessimistic – you’ll get a house in time –

In time to draw the pension in 1989.

You've Never Had It So Good also commented on the new way of shopping:

Supermarkets with their crowded racks

Lots of air inside the giant packs

In Estelle Myers' sketch The Best Things in Life Are Free a punter lauds the facilities of his club as he feeds a poker machine.

The sketch Non Cents highlighted the confusion when decimal currency was introduced:

Grocer: Yes, madam, can I help you?

Housewife: A packet of soap powder, please.

Grocer: That’ll be 3/11 or 47 cents.

Housewife: No, 39 cents.

Grocer: Madam, 3/11 is 47 pence which equals at a penny a cent ~ 47 cents.

Housewife (with conversion chart): In my conversion chart 3 shillings equals 30 cents plus 11 pence equals 9 cents. 39 cents.

Mona Brand’s Our 'Dear' Relations satirised the commercialisation of frequent gift-giving occasions such as Mother’s Day.

Spurred on by a public relations man and a chain store representative, the proprietor of Alert Shirts, a small Sydney factory, decides to boost sales with an Uncles’ and Aunties’ Day. The cast included Martin Harris, Mark Edwards and wigmaker Edith McLaren. The play won best amateur production and best Australian play at the 1963 Arts Council Drama Festival.


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