Alex Riley.

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Alex was born on 19th May, 1942. Did he invite any of us to his birthday show, no way! Instead he sent most of us searching the paddocks of Bridgewater looking for his non-existent Mystery Birthday Venue for the party that never happened.

And where was Alex pray tell, he was at the Westies Footy Club getting pissed. Thanks mate!

Alex started at the Old Guv as a Comp room Shit Boy in 1958. His first job was to sweep the pavement outside the Old Guv. He didn’t like doing this as he thought it was below him and should be the job of the poorer boys. He dreaded a relative or school friend seeing him out the front doing this menial work.

But he had to do it, so morning after morning there was little hairy Alex sweeping the bus tickets, lolly wrappers and other assorted shit off the pavement. But worst of all were the Plane tree Leaves that gathered in every nook and cranny outside the Guv. It was a nightmare for this young lad. At night instead of pleasuring himself like most young boys of his age he would have nightmares about those bloody plane tree leaves.

Then one day he was summoned by the Government Printer, Les Hawes.  Shaking with fear he stood in front of “The Bull” who proceeded to rip strips off him for not removing all the plane tree leaves out of one of the outside light wells.

Then our young hero did a wrong thing he interrupted the Government Printer to plead his innocence. Well, The Bull exploded in a fit of outrage, threatened Alex with an early death and said that from now on he would be watching him very, very, closely indeed.

For the next few weeks the panic stricken boy would double check and then triple check to see that the front was totally clean. Then one day Senior Apprentice Brian “Grubby” Hartshorne stopped by and enquired if Alex was in total control of the plane tree leaves.

“Yes”, he stammered., to which Grubby replied, “Are you sure?”. Fuck me! Alex panicked and flew out the front of the office to quadruple check to see if the pavement was clean.

To this day, 54 years on, Alex strongly suspects that “Grubby” set him up.

The second story is from Netley. One wet morning driving to Netley Alex spotted Bob Miller up ahead slowly pushing his bike through the pouring rain.

It was just past the Rex Hotel when Alex noticed that water was flooding the road due to a blocked drain. Bob Miller steered his bike onto the footpath to avoid the pool of water. To this day Alex says that he does not know why he did what he did. But, I do! Alex you are a cruel heartless bastard.

Alex moved his car close to the gutter and then moved even closer. Whoosh! A Tsunami of dirty stinking water engulfed poor Bob Miller. Poor old Bob, wrong place, wrong time. He was saturated from head to toe.

Did he stop to help his workmate? No way, he sped on to the comfort of the warm Planning Room. There he told his co-workers he was heading off to the Dunny and no-one was to tell Bob where he was. He spent all day planning his jobs in the toilet cubicle. What a bastard!

You leather driving gloves to drive your Jaguar. You did the Governor’s Christmas Cards out of grovelling servitude. You photographed the Jag in front of Government House and then sent the photo claiming to be the new Governor of South Australia.

This is behaviour befitting an Arsehole and true Old Guv Legend. Alex  you are now one of us.

Rod Parham

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