April Fools’ Day came early this week for thousands of Australians after we published a story about Greensborough man Rick Bitter naming his daughter Victoria. The viral spread of the story and its headline surprised many media pundits, including all at Bugle HQ here in Watsonia.
The story is now the most-read article in The Watsonia Bugle’s long history. It miraculously surpassed the drunken hipster falling asleep on the Hurstbridge Line and waking up in Diamond Creek, and the angry deli customer who lost their cool when their kabana was snapped in half without asking.
But the headline itself ended up spreading even further, as prominent meme pages shared the attention-grabbing title, and the image of a frosty six pack of Victoria Bitter sitting in our mother-in-law’s fridge. While a leading sports betting agency took the sharing a bit too far by craftily removing the Bugle name from the image they shared, they were swiftly dealt with by passionate Bugle devotees. The resulting ham-fisted “apology” and retraction was a rare win for the little guy.
However, the clear highlight of the week was making it onto the world-renowned airwaves of neighbouring Adelaide. Speculation continues to swirl around whether “Roo & Ditts” were in on the joke, but any discussion of that kind is merely academic, because the cold hard fact is that our story made it on to Adelaide radio, and that’s a rare bright spot in an otherwise colourless journalistic existence.
The appearance on the airwaves seemed to add a certain legitimacy to the story, with debate raging across the nation over whether a conveniently surnamed man would be ballsy enough to ignore his baby mumma’s pleas and insist on naming his newborn daughter after Australia’s most iconic alcoholic beverage. The concept fuelled passionate conversations in boardrooms, cricket change rooms, the members’ bar at the Watsy RSL, and multiple services on the Hurstbridge Line.
Did it really happen? Well, only true fans of the Bugle will know the answer to that question.