Extract from CSIRO Minerals News: An interview with: "Dr X-ray Ted" (laboratory Icon)
1. What motivated you to join CSIRO?
I was recruited (purchased) from Paddy's Market in Sydney after an AXAA conference dinner. My research on the toy stall was proving limited so I saw an opportunity for a career change.
2. What is your favourite holiday destination?
3. Where do you picture yourself in 10 years time?
Sadly, I suspect that apart from a few more conference jaunts, my career is pretty much on the shelf where you see me.
4. Do you ever use bad language in public?
I can swear (oops, sorry) that no one has ever heard me swear.
5. What has been your proudest moment working for CSIRO?
Being photographed inside the specimen chamber of an environmental SEM at ACEM-15 in Hobart.
6. What is your most treasured possession?
My Science Forum badge from the original Woodend Love-In. I can still remember Dr Hill pinning it on me - the pain was unbearable.
7. Is there too much nudity and sex on television?
I don't have any problem with bearing all on any piece of furniture but I have had one or two nasty experiences with an indoor antenna…
8. What is your favourite TV show?
I must admit to a certain weakness for Playschool - the jauntiness and thespian flair of Big Ted always leaves me quite moved.
9. Should Australia become a republic and if so how should the President/Governor General be appointed?
I think that it is inevitable that Australia will become a republic. When this happens it is of the utmost importance that the selection of the new "Grande Fromage" be a most solemn and dignified undertaking. I propose the method used within the Ted clan (my own dear family) for selection of our paterfamilias: he who can cough a fur-ball the furthest distance calls the shots.
10. What are your hidden talents?
If I told you that they would no longer be hidden. Now would they?
11. Do you currently play any sport and what did you play at school?
I am currently non-competitive in any sports. However, in my schooldays I often found myself being used for polishing the balls of the rugby squad.
12. What was your favourite subject at school?
13. Have you any superstitions or lucky charms?
I always make sure that I walk under a black cat when I get a ladder in my tights.
14. Are you a good gardener?
Being of a horticultural bent, I have been known to do odd jobs in the woods.
15. What jobs did you have before joining CSIRO?
Stuffed toy; child's comforter; dashboard ornament; team mascot (remember the rugby squad); Prime Minister (just seeing if you're paying attention!)
16. Do you play any musical instruments?
I play the little known (and less requested) "Left-handed Mongolian Nose-Flute". Not a lot of music has been composed for this much-misunderstood instrument and there is also not much of a second-hand market for them.
17. Do you prefer a sci-fi adventure movie or a romantic tear-jerker?
Oh romance every time - I'm not a soft toy for nothing.
18. What is your favourite LP or CD?
"The Teddy Bear's Picnic". I love songs with a story in them and the gritty realism of "The TBP" (as we in the know call it) strikes a chord deep within even the hardest of hearts.
19. If you could have the job of your choice what would it be?
Exotic dancer and singer - I want to "hum free, be bare". (You won't believe this but I stole that joke from a cat called Amos…)
20. If you were marooned on a desert island what three things would you be sure to take?
My Science Forum badge, my Left-handed Mongolian Nose Flute (see this interview is nothing if not internally consistent) and a rugby ball (for old times' sake).