Big Brother is alive and thriving here in Australia.  First, I’m talking about Big Brother, the reality show.  If it’s not footy ball or rugby or AFL or some other ball-involved sport that’s on, it’s Big Brother.  I never watched the US version, so I don’t really know what the concept of this show is, but it seems to me to be a PG-rated version of MTV’s The Real World – except people get “voted” off instead of “kicked” off.  (I find myself watching TV like every good foreigner does in an effort to better understand the language.)  

Another Big Brother I’ve noticed is that of the Australian Government.  In a good way, maybe, they’ve established quite a presence here.  I read that the Aussie gov’t is like the 2nd highest spender in advertisements (is this the case with all gov’ts?).  There’s a slew of commercials funded by the gov’t “recommending” ways to reduce your water use, or save energy and the likes.  They also seem to invest heavily to promote anything that’s made in Australia, and there are tons of ads pushing all the vacation hotspots from coast to coast.  Even when you go to a carpark (parking lot), there’s signs everywhere asking, “Did you lock your car?”  So what if I didn’t?  And then there’s Big Brother at the local level.  Although they don’t seem to have a big police presence here, people carry on like they’re everywhere.  I mean, they drive the speed limit – on side streets, on highways – and everyone on bikes wears a helmet.  And, when it comes to drink (not drunk!) driving, most people seem to follow the rules.  Several bars in the area have courtesy vans that will do pick ups/drop offs.  So nice!     

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