Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Gee, it’s fun roaming around the marvellous community of classified advertising. Regular visitors to this blog already know what it’s all about; I say to others, "Welcome to the Classie Corner 25th anniversary party." Yes, it’s a quarter century since I started using the name Classie Corner to signpost my writing expeditions into the pages that are packed with people’s hopes and dreams. Journalists everywhere follow-up classified ads for news and feature stories. They rarely acknowledge, however, where the inspiration came from. Classie Corner was my way of saying, "Thanks, Classifieds". Nowadays, the internet has produced massive new crops waiting for the picking. I will bring you some of this in the days, weeks, months and years to come. In the meantime, I will dip into my archives again. Classie Corner has always tried to make people smile. Flashback to January 2002…
THE trend to take colour out of a great language with "politically correct" gender-bending manipulation cannot stop me from writing that a certain Rockhampton business has been doing a great service to mankind.
The critics may demand "humankind" rather than "mankind" but I bet they missed the snub for "personipulation" a few words earlier.
We’re talking men’s business here. It’s the Gladstone Road paradise, A Man’s Toyshop.
Now you can understand why that good old three-letter word deserves a share of the action.
A Mans Toyshop owner Ross Mylrea deserves a pat on the back, not so much for a great name but for a great service ensuring that blokes throughout the nation can get the right tools for the job, seven days a week.
The firm can be applauded especially for its 9am-1pm Sunday session.
Anyone who has been stuck without the right tool to finish a job before the kids get home from Sunday school can understand my delight about that.
But assistant manager John Paul Ewart’s summary of the aims of A Mans Toyshop should bring more cheers out there in sheds, workshops and garages around the country.
"We are out to provide the things that make the job easier," he said.
One of the interesting developments on the tool front over the past few years had been the air-driven star picket driver, he said.
The firm does a brisk trade in those and John Paul says about 15 models of compressors are available, with prices starting about $199 for a basic handyman type.
John Paul, whose trade is motor mechanics, has lived in Rockhampton most of his life and has worked at A Man’s Toyshop for the past 18 months.
He is part of a 16-person team including phone operators on the 1800 803838 order service.
The staff includes three women. So there.
John Paul has been busy talking to applicants to clean the store after a recent Checkout Classifieds notice.
Of course, women have been welcome to apply.
Just before I go, a blast from the "family album".
Some mates dropped around when the concrete on my deck footings was still wet.
"Gee, you finished off the footings well," one said.
Me: "I’ve got a special little finishing tool."
Him: "What’s it look like? Show it to me."
Me: "It’s over there; it’s called ‘the missus’."
That’s one that A Mans Toyshop does not have in stock.

Now in 2006, I am happy to look at any story leads from anywhere in the marvellous community for exposure on this blog. Classie Corner is still on paper – in the Redland Times on beautiful Moreton Bay, the gateway to Australia’s growth hotspot, south-east Queensland. Email to fourjays@bigpond.com.au. In future, I expect to give links to websites and individual online classifieds and will consider any requests, where from site operators of owners.

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