Bruce Kutcher was born at Kadina under the shade of the Wombat Hotel. He worked for a small print shop before moving to Adelaide and settling in at the Old Guv.
As a jobbing comp, Bruce was well skilled and no job was beyond his talent. He was placed under the watchful eye of Fred Hardwicke, who looked after and stood up for his group of comps.
Bruce loved his cigarettes and was a chain smoker. Some days he had a fag in his mouth, another on the Ludlow and one alight in his frame next to me. He also had a love for a beer and every lunch break was off to the pub.
Even on overtime, during the tea break he was off to the pub. Bruce won a prize in a Cricket Club raffle (3 bottles of sherry). Did he take it home? – well no, as Bruce and I consumed 2 bottles during OT. Boy! was I pissed. On arriving home I said to my wife ‘Hi I’m home’ and promptly passed out – she was not happy.
Bruce was a skilled fisherman – knew every knot in the book and often made up fishing lines for Fred and others. Bruce would take our wooden forme furniture and turn it into amazing ‘floats’ to take to fishing.
Some Saturday mornings Roger Francis, Bruce and myself would go to Outer Harbour to fish. It wasn’t long before Bruce would produce a bottle of grog and the fishing became enjoyable. One morning Bruce hooked a seagull and all hell broke loose.
Bruce was seen limping quite badly one morning on the Jobbing floor. On closer inspection Bruce Lockier informed Bruce that his shoes were on the incorrect foot. Another time Bruce arrived wearing two different brown shoes.
Bruce turned up one day clearly not well. Ron Evans told him to go to the Railways Tavern and have a stout and port wine poured into a glass. Hours later he returned so pissed that Fred ushered him to the bus stop.
Bruce and I used to buy fireworks in November, especially throwdowns, and constantly tossed them at others. Also flower pots, jumping jacks and squibs were tossed under the dunny doors causing mayhem.
Bruce loved the Cricket trips to Melbourne where he could drink constantly and one trip he fell out of the bus head first, missing all the steps.
Moving to Netley was Bruce’s downfall as the bus stop to Netley was close to the Majestic Hotel. He would alight from the bus from Nailsworth and enter the pub for a drink or two.
When he finally arrived at Netley Bert Cotton had sealed the doors, so if the doors did not open, Bruce just turned around and went off home via a pub or two.
In the end Bruce gave up coming to work as the doors were continually locked, his marriage broke up and he spent his final days living with his aged mother, yet Bruce was never sacked, simply taken off the ‘books’.