Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Day 2392 - The Wall of Fame

Ever wonder what your Wall of Fame would look like?

In the lead up to my hubsters BIG BIRTHDAY celebrations this year he was a tad grumpy.  He wasn't much into this ageing business and was feeling a bit mid-life-crisisey.  He still wanted a party though. Not sure if the original purpose of the party was celebration or commiseration, but the party was non-negotiable.  It had to happen, it had to be BIG and it had to have a retro 80s basketball theme.

Which is what he got.  Shorty shorts, big hair, long socks and sweat bands.

A family cuddle in our retro-basketball gear
Yes, I'm the ref. Just so there's no mistaking who's boss.
As with any BIG BIRTHDAY we were always going to do a photo wall to celebrate his growth into the amazing man he has become.

But it wasn't until an offhanded comment in the hot tub that I decided to create him a Wall of Fame.

He'd mentioned that he was once in the newspaper for a basketball game where he'd helped take the team to victory.  He seemed to recall it was a school boys game and that there was a photo of him mid-dunk.

I did what any good investigative wife would do and I googled him.

Google took me deeper into the inter-webs than I'd expected to go to a special hidey hole in the back corner of the National Library of Australia.

I was astounded to discover that the National Library of Australia appears to have every copy of the Canberra Times that ever existed and that "the Trove" search engines found multiple articles referencing my husband's name spanning 20 years of basketball achievements in the ACT.

After much excitement and an entire printer full of ink, I was able to create not just a photo wall, but a Wall of Fame.

Did you know that you could go to the NLA website and find scans of newspaper articles spanning years?

Of course you did, because you're clever.

To be honest I'd never given it much thought.  I kind of figured all that stuff was still stuck in microfiche format where you physically had to visit your local library to view microscopic articles that you spend hours finding via a special library catalogue code.

I pity the poor person who has to sit and clip and scan all day, but I applaud the NLA for ensuring Australian history is kept well preserved in the written word, and easily accessible for all Aussies to enjoy.

It got me to wondering if they keep all Australian newspapers.

It also got me to wondering if  we were to search ourselves if we'd find our names pop up from eons ago.

The hubster actually didn't know (or at least he didn't remember) that he'd been mentioned so many times over the years.  There were sporting articles on tennis, ten pin bowling and basketball that all had his name "up in lights" outlining his contribution to the game.  Simple sentences showing his brilliance both on the court as a player and off the court as a coach.  There were also articles where he'd been interviewed about comics (he'd forgotten about those).

It was an interesting exercise and one that turned a potential mid-life-crisis and woe-is-me moment into a celebration of self.

Whether there be newspaper clippings or not, I think we should all have a Wall of Fame to remind us of who we were, who we've become and who we've yet to be.  Something like a visual resume to show us that we can accomplish things and that we do add value to the world.  Something to encourage us to keep on going and to be proud of our age rather than be disheartened by it.

Whether it be in the public domain or something more private like our school certificates, the odd award, a thank you letter, a friendship card or a bunch of dried roses from a significant moment in life, these things remind us that we have done stuff and that we are recognised for what we've done.

Reflecting on what we've done well in life helps us to age positively.

What do you think?

Have you ever created a Wall of Fame?

What would your Wall of Fame look like?

When's your next BIG BIRTHDAY?


  1. That's incredible that you can easily access all those newspaper clippings! What a great idea for your hubby. I bet he loved it! (Shannon@ my2morrows)

  2. What I presume is your oldest daughter, looks EXACTLY like you!! WOW!

    1. LOL. That is actually funny because she's my step daughter (no shared DNA). Oldest is in the light blue, second in line is in white shorts, our boy is number three.

  3. Gee I'd be scared to tackle my own wall of fame. My poor memory would see me fail at the task! Great idea though!

  4. That's super cool! The only thing I've done that's hit the papers is kick up a fuss over public breastfeeding. That landed me on Sunrise and made international news- must've been a slow news week haha!

  5. LOVE LOVE LOVE this idea! My thinking cap is on how I can include this in one of our celebrations :)

  6. Love this idea. We soon move on and forget about all the anazing things we achieve

  7. NLA's resources are amazing. I used to use them constantly in my previous life as a researcher.

  8. Have you got two daughters Leanne? I don't think I knew that.

    Love the Hall of Fame idea. My SIL did something similar for my brother's 50th - lots of old photos and achievement ribbons etc... (All tongue in cheek of course!)

  9. Oh wow, Leanne!!! That is amazing. You totally aced that Wall of fame. Your husband must have been thrilled. #teamIBOT


  10. This is great - he must have been thrilled and it would have really brought some great memories back. It is a amazing what is available to be found but I had no idea the archive would be so inclusive. I did a video for my Dad's 70th birthday and on top of some faded newspaper clips of his Rugby League glory days I found an old news reel of a Brisbane grand-final day on Youtube and was able to include snippets in the video - the quality was terrible but it was very authentic.

  11. What a great idea to set up for a milestone celebration! You did so well to put this together for your hubby! Well done.

  12. That's such an awesome idea! I was in the local paper a couple of times with pictures taken at inter school swimming carnivals. In one we all had swimming caps and looked like aliens lol.

  13. Aw! I love this. We did a photo wall for my husband's 40th, but something like this would have been great. He was a quite successful cyclist in his teens, even representing Australia and travelling to NZ. I might have to put my investigative hat on and see what I can find for his 50th!

  14. Love this! I put together a similar thing for my hubby's, cough, ahem, 21st birthday (we had been together 3 years). He was a champion ballroom dancer as a child and there were a few amusing newspaper clippings (including one with a photo and headline 'Move over Paul (Mercurio)'.
    (I didn't have to hunt for them though - his sister had kept safe in an album).
    The wall sure was appreciated by the 50 or so people from his Rugby Club!
    Maybe that's why it took him another 4 years to propose after that, lol. (Been together 16 years now).
    Great job!


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