Monday, 21 September, 2020

Happy endings for missing duo; Japan’s supermarket robots; Australia’s Tour de France triumph; and how much would you pay for an ooshie?



Robot shelf stackers:

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There were happy endings on both sides of the country yesterday as a missing three year old in Western Australia, and a missing 72 year old on Fraser Island were both found safe and well after they’d gone missing in bushland.

The mum and dad of three-year old James O’Reilly were yesterday crying tears of relief after their little boy was found as night set in after he was lost for 12 hours in bushland near the holiday house they were staying at. 

James ran into the bush and went missing while his mum and dad were packing up the holiday home the family had been staying in. 

Police and emergency services searched for the little boy all day- as rain and hail fell. Finally, it was James’ poppy who found the boy – returning him to his grateful parents, thankfully unharmed.

Meanwhile – on Fraser Island – off the Queensland coast – 72 year old hiker Madeleine Nowak was found alive and well after being missing for three days. 

Madeleine wandered off a bush track, lost her bearings – and was forced to spend three nights in the rainforest before finding her way to the beach and being rescued by campers.

In both instances, police said the best thing to do if you ever become lost is to stay as close as possible to the spot you went missing – to make it easier for rescuers to find you. 

Speaking of good news, there was finally some light at the end of the lockdown tunnel for Victorians yesterday, with the number of new coronavirus cases in the state dropping to only 14. 

The state’s Premier, Daniel Andrews, described it as “a good day” for Victoria and added he hoped it meant lockdown restrictions could ease as early as next weekend. Fingers, toes, legs, arms and eyes crossed. Ok – maybe not eyes.   




Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops. And today we’ve landed in Japan – where supermarkets have started to use seven-foot tall robots to stack shelves.

You know the shelves in supermarkets? And how they always seem to be magically full of groceries? That’s because people come in in the dead of night and stack the shelves – replacing all the items that have been purchased during the day. And you thought there were magic supermarket fairies…

Well, in Japan, they’ve started experimenting with robots to roam the supermarket aisles and restock the shelves. And because the shelves are sometimes high, the robots can rise to a height of seven foot. 

There’s a link in today’s episode notes to a video of the robots in action.




While you slept last night, a cyclist from Tasmania stood up on the winner’s podium in Paris, having come third in the most prestigious road race in the world – the Tour de France.

The Tour de France is a 3,200km bike race that happens every year, taking place over 23 days, on roads all over France – testing riders’ abilities in a combination of time trials and endurance rides up mountains, down hills and along long flat stretches. It’s easily the most prestigious bike race in the world. So the fact that Australia’s Richie Porte has come third in this year’s Tour de France is a cause for celebration. 

The achievement is especially sweet for Richie – whose chances back in the 2016 Tour de France were foiled when he suffered a punctured tyre at a bad moment – and his 2017 race came to a dramatic end when he crashed at 70km/h while coming down a winding mountain road – suffering a broken collar bone.

Richie’s coach yesterday said his third placing in the Tour was a result of the hard work he constantly put in and his drive to keep going – when many others would have given up.




Ooshie mania continues to sweep the nation with a man in Perth yesterday advertising his complete collection of Disney+ Ooshie collectibles on Facebook for a staggering $25,000. 

That seems like a lot of money for a bunch of little plastic figurines. But hey, what do I know?

The news comes after reports last week of a rare Baby Yoda Ooshie – the one with furry clothing – attracting bids of up to $100,000 on ebay. 

Meanwhile – BTS mania continues to sweep the music world with Spotify – the music streaming service reporting that the group’s music has been streamed 11 billion times – that’s billion with a ‘b’ – and that their new single, Dynamite – the Korean group’s first song in English – has seen the number of Spotify listeners searching for the group increase by 300% since its release. 




This is the part of the podcast where you get to test how well you’ve been listening …

  1. What’s the name of the island off the coast of Queensland where a 72 year old hiker was found yesterday after three days missing in rainforest?
  2. What’s the name of the world famous cycling race in which Aussie Richie Porte has just claimed third place?
  3. In which country are robot shelf stackers being tested in supermarkets?




It’s September 21 ….. International Peace Day – where the United Nations is this year encouraging all of the countries of the world to be reminded as the globe battles the COVID pandemic that there are more things that united us than divide us.

And it’s a great big happy birthday to …  my excellent nephew Archie from Moorooka, Gabriel from Abbotsford, Oliver from Diamond Creek, Grace from Launceston, Hayden from Broken Hill, Clyde from Wagga Wagga, Lan from Erskineville, Hannah from Manly West, Daniel from Perth, Izzy from Hawthorn, Flynn from Chewton, Azi from Concord West, Joel from Kew, Bastien from Chifley, Lily from Elderslie, and Wyatt from Stockton. 

And belated birthday shoutouts to … Banjo, Sebastian, Ellie and Caspian from Boorowa, Oliver from Valentine, Eli from Perth, Charlotte from Wamberal, Luka, Sofia, and Avesta from Sydney, and Matilda from Launceston.

Happy birthday one and all!

And a special shout out to Alison from Artarmon – who reckons listening to Squiz Kids is more interesting than reading newspapers .. we’ll take that.

Today’s classroom shout outs go to …  6A at Karalee State School with Mrs Gardiner, who celebrated a birthday recently, as well as Miss Salanitro who teaches 3S from Fairfield Heights Public School, and Miss Littlewood of 3/4L at Adamstown Public School. And a big shoutout to all the kids and staff at Greenthorpe Public School, who have just welcomed their new principal Mr Cartwright.

A great big Squiz Kids salute from all of us to all of you … 


  The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Fraser Island
  2. Tour de France
  3. Japan