Thursday, 13 May, 2021

Let the festival of Eid begin; It’s raining mice; Ancient solder in volcano discovery; and Dua Lipa owns The Brits.



Ramadan explainer video:

It’s raining mice … Warning: it’s kind of gross …

Another mice plague video ..

Hundred bum worm:


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If you’re one of the more than half-a-million practicing Muslims in Australia, today’s a big day of the year for you as the holy month of Ramadan comes to an end and the festival of Eid begins. 

Ramadan is a month of fasting, prayer and reflection. Fasting means not eating or drinking: which is what practicing Muslims do from sunrise to sunset for the entire month of Ramadan. No food or water while the sun is up. 

Maybe you’ve just spent the month of Ramadan fasting — or maybe some of your classmates have. They’d be the ones at lunchtime trying not to drool while you scoff down your lunch.

Today is the festival of Eid – which is also known as the Festival of Breaking the Fast. Practicing Muslims usually start the day with morning prayer at their local mosque, then get together with family and friends. And eat. And eat, and maybe drink something, and eat again.

Now that sounds like my sort of celebration.

Ramadan is similar to Lent on the Christian calendar – which falls between Ash Wednesday and Easter.  

Over 1.6 billion Muslims around the world celebrate Ramadan every year. People of the Muslim faith make up almost one quarter of the world’s population. 

If you’re keen to know more, I’ve stuck a link in today’s episode notes to an excellent BTN news report on Eid. And to our Muslim listeners, Eid Mubarak – apologies for my bad pronunciation – and enjoy those plates of food today …


Now, I’ve seen some crazy stuff in my time – but never, until yesterday, had I seen it raining mice … 

But that’s exactly what the internet was treated to after a farmer in Tullamore, near Dubbo in central NSW shared a video of dead mice falling from a grain silo on his property. 

Lots of rural communities throughout NSW, Victoria and Queensland are currently dealing with a mouse plague. A mouse plague is when mice breed so quickly that they number in their millions and march across the land, eating everything in sight. Which is what some of our poor friends in the country have been fighting now for months. The current plague is the worst the country has seen for almost forty years – and farmers have called for government help to deal with it. Our thoughts are with you, mouse-affected country cousins.

And yes, for the curious: there are links to the raining mice video in today’s episode notes: but be warned: it’s not pretty.




Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops. And today we’ve landed in Pompeii, in Italy. Where archaeologists believe a 2000-year-old skeleton belongs to a soldier who died while trying to rescue villagers from the most famous volcanic explosion in history. 

Mt Vesuvius is an active volcano just to the south of the Italian city of Naples. Two thousand years ago it erupted – sending poisonous gases, mounds of ash and mud and rivers of molten lava down onto the city of Pompeii. Very famously, many of the inhabitants of Pompeii were mummified by the ash, mud and lava – their remains preserved for future generations, like us, to uncover and marvel at. Which is exactly what archeologists have done this week – uncovering a skeleton they believe belonged to a soldier who had been sent to by boat to rescue the residents of Pompeii from the volcano – but was knocked down by the force of the volcanic eruption and died on the beach – surrounded by 300 people he had come to rescue. 

There’s a link to photos of the skeleton in today’s episode notes – and the soldier’s sword that was found near him. Because who doesn’t want to see a photo of a 2000 year old skeleton




Girls ruled at the Brit Awards in London yesterday – as Dua Lipa and the all-girl group Little Mix scooped the pool at Britain’s big music awards night.

Pop sensation Dua Lipa set the tone for the evening when – standing to accept the Best Female performer award and in front of an audience of frontline workers – she said while it was great to pay tribute to nurses – it would be much better if they got paid better. Go Dua! 

Taylor Swift flew the flag at the awards for her fellow Americans – picking up the Global Icon award – it was British all-girl group, Little Mix who generated the most buzz. 

Picking up the award for Best Group, the girls made a speech saying it was frankly unacceptable that they were the first all-female group to win the award in the 43 year history of the Brits. 

As the Spice Girls would say: Girl power. 




And so we go to the warm waters off Western Australia, where researchers at a university have made a pretty gruesome discovery. A worm that lives inside a sea sponge and has one hundred bums. 

Can you even imagine?

Scientists have been studying this particular worm for a while. It has one head, it’s body grows like a root system through large pieces of sea sponge – and at every point where the long tentacles poke through the sponge and are exposed to the open sea – there’s an .. ahem … opening for waste to pass through. A multi-bummed sea worm. Now I’ve heard everything. 

And yes: if a worm with a hundred butts is your sort of thing, there’s a link to photos of it in today’s episode notes. 




Don’t forget: you’ve only got until Monday to get your questions in for AFL star midfielder, Josh Dunkley – who’s kindly agreed to answer your questions in our next Squiz Kids Q+A.

Josh is a seriously good midfielder with the Western Bulldogs, a premiership winning AFL player and one of the nicest blokes in the league. 

He’s also a proud member of the Swysh community – a great new service providing everyday Aussies with personalised video messages from their favourite sports stars. It’s an awesome gift, for birthdays and big celebrations, and every Swysh video raises money for charity. 

Send through any questions you have for Josh to [email protected] … and for more info about Swysh, check out  – that’s swish with a y – or see the link in today’s episode notes. Oh — and the best question gets a free, personalised video message from Josh himself. How cool is that?




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

  1. What is the name of the month of fasting in the Muslim calendar that came to an end last night?
  2. In which country in Europe is the ancient city of Pompeii, which was buried after a volcanic eruption 2000 years ago?
  3. Name the popstar who won Best Female artist at the Brit Awards and called for a pay rise for nurses?




It’s May 13… It;s International Hummus Day … yum! I love hummus .. and that’s quite timely, given it’s the start of Eid  … and it’s also the birthday of Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, who turns 53 today. 

It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today …. Allura from Abbotsford, Emma from Broadford, Moira and Coby from Glen Innes, Grace from Northcote, and Anik who’s listening in all the way from Toronto, Canada. 

And some belated birthday shoutouts to… Chloe from Burradoo and James from Castle Cove.

Classroom shoutouts… Mr Meesen’s 5/6M class at Mandama Primary School, Miss Grantham’s Year 5/6 class at Challis Community Primary School, all the Year 5 kids at Good Shepherd Primary School in Canberra, class 4D from St Ives North Public School, and class 4B at St Joseph’s Primary School in Como. 


The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Ramadan
  2. Italy
  3. Dua Lipa