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Three very interesting announcements were made by Mr Sydney Kirkcaldie on the occasion of the Peace Entertainment given by Messrs Kirkcaldie and Stains, to their staff on Saturday night (says the Wellington Post). The first was that on and after September 1 their establishment would be closed at 5.30 pm. The next was that a bonus of two weeks' salary was to be made as a Peace gift to each member of the staff who had been in their employment for a year and over. The third set forth that in the future all excess profits over a certain percentage would be saved for a period of three years, and would be distributed as bonus shares among members of the staff, thus enabling all to share in the prosperity of the business. The first distribution would be made on May 6, 1920. Immense enthusiasm greeted these promises, and Mr Kirkcaldie was interrupted with ringing cheers and the singing of "For He's a Jolly Good Fellow", and hearty cheering again at the close of his speech.
Unsuited to the tropics
Experiments carried out by the Australian Institute of Tropical Medicine at Townsville have served to show that it is impossible for white men to continue heavy manual labour under true tropical conditions such as exist in North Queensland for the same time in a temperate region without raising the body temperature to a dangerous degree (says the Melbourne Age). The experiments covered short periods of vigorous exercise, steady exercise over a longer period, and exposure to extreme heat. Reports covering the operations of the Institute of Tropical Medicine for the year 1918 were tabled in the commonwealth Parliament last week by the Minister for Home and Territories. A malarial survey of the Innisfail district was carried out by the institute during 1918, and the many cases of fever previously classified as malarial were found on examination of the blood specimens to be free of the malarial parasite.
The extraordinary statement recently made by a British Board of Trade official that fishermen do not care to learn to swim because the agony of drowning would be prolonged is a reminder of some of their other curious fads. Their sovereign charm against mishap at sea is still a child's caul, which could have been bought for 1s 6d before the war, but which went up to 5 or 6 on account of the submarine danger. Again, it is doubtful if there is a single East Coast fishing vessel without a coin under the mast for luck, and not a single drift net which has not a coin somewhere at the pole corner. Buying the wind is still assiduously practised, the process consisting of a man climbing the mast, throwing a coin into the sea, and whistling, whence comes the proverbial saying, "Whistling for a wind".
Warrington frost fish
Residents of seaside resorts which possess a beach make a practice of patrolling the sea front in the early mornings in search of frost-fish. Occasionally their watchfulness is rewarded. About three weeks ago a resident of Warrington found a frost-fish, measuring 5ft 5in in length, and on Saturday another fish, measuring about 6ft, was found.
- ODT, 28.7.1919