Tuesday, 13 December, 2022

Space mission a success as Orion splashes down; Arkansas’ 18yo mayor; new app to fight bluebottle stings; English football’s new cat mascot.



Orion splashes down



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The moon just got a whole lot closer after the NASA space capsule Orion arrived back down on Earth after a successful 26 day lunar mission.

You remember a month ago on the podcast we talked about the Artemis rocket launch – and how this was the first mission in a series of three that would end up with humans walking again on the Moon?

The capsule at the top of that rocket, Orion, splashed down to Earth again early morning Australia time – plonking down into the ocean off the west coast of the USA – where a flotilla of navy ships were ready to collect it. 

A flotilla is a group of boats. 

Orion has spent the past couple of weeks orbiting the Moon … orbit means that it has been spinning around above the Moon – taking lots of photos and studying the Moon’s surface. 

There were no astronauts on board – this was just a practice run for a similar mission that will take astronauts up to the Moon, hopefully in two years time. 

Orion hit the Earth’s atmosphere at a speed of 40,000 km/h – imagine that! And it was travelling so fast that the friction created when the capsule encountered our atmosphere sparked a ball of fire which reached temperatures of almost 3,000 degrees celsius. That’s mind-blowingly hot. 

And yet, when it floated down to the ocean – with three huge parachutes breaking the fall – it did so with incredible grace. 

I’ve stuck a link to video of the splashdown in today’s episode notes. 



Each day we give the world globe a spin and find a news story from wherever it stops – and today we’ve landed in Arkansas in the United States – in a town called Earle, where an 18 yo kid has just been elected mayor.

Jaylen Smith lives at home with his mum and has just finished high school – but he was involved in the school council at school and decided he wanted to continue his political career. 

Now that he’s mayor, Jaylen has vowed to fix up the canteen at his old high school, increase police on the street in his home town and create services to help the elderly. 

Oh – and his mum has reportedly been crying with pride since her son’s election … nice work Jaylen.



The world cup is being held in a country called Qatar – spelt with a Q – but there’s a suggestion it should be renamed the Catar World Cup – spelt with a C – after all the cats that have made headlines. 

Last week a cat made an unscheduled appearance at a press conference with the Brazilian team. And yesterday came the news that a cat called Dave would be making the trip home to England from Qatar as the new team mascot of the English football team. 

English defenders Kyle Walker and John Stones adopted a stray tabby while staying in Qatar – or more likely, the tabby adopted them. They called him Dave and instead of leaving him behind when they return to England, they’ve decided to take him with them.

Dave will spend a month or so in quarantine before heading to England. I wonder how he’s going to cope going from the desert to an English winter. Hope he takes his fur coat.



Is there anything better in the summer than chucking on your cossie and heading to the beach? And is there anything more awful than being stung by a blue-bottle once you get there? Well fear not – because some clever scientists are developing an app that will help to predict where and when bluebottles could appear. 

Surf life savers treat some 40,000 bluebottle stings each summer – yikes. 

But a new app called BlueBottleWatch being developed by the University of NSW will study weather patterns to work out which beaches along the east coast of Australia are most likely to have bluebottles. The little blighters are carried on the sea by the wind – making it relatively easy to predict where – and onto which beach goers limbs – they’re likely to end up.




What’s the most popular kids haircut in Australia? If you could have any haircut at all now that school is pretty much over for the year and you can technically go crazy … what would it be?

That’s the question we’re asking Squiz Kids all this week as we partner with Just Cuts to discover Australia’s ultimate kids hairstyle.

All you have to do is write to us a [email protected] and tell us your ultimate hair style and you’ll go into the draw to win … get this … a year’s worth of style cuts for the whole family – plus a family pack of Just Cuts new range of kids hair-care products … the JUSTICE Professional Kids range – including Tutti-Frutti tear-free shampoo, tangle-free conditioner and a texturising wax .. for those days when you’re feeling super stylish. Exclusive to Just Cuts salons or available at justcuts.com. I’ve stuck a link in today’s episode notes …  

We’ve got one prize pack to give away for each state ..

So don’t just sit there … get busy imagining your ideal haircut and drop us a line!



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 cat adopted by English football players in Qatar?
  2. How old is the new mayor of the town of Earle in Arkansas?
  3. What’s the name of the space capsule that just came back to Earth?




It’s December 13 …  only 12 sleeps ‘til Xmas … you better watch out, you better not pout … today is Taylor Swift’s birthday … the chart topping American singer/songwriter turns 33 today …

It’s also a special day for these Squiz Kids celebrating a birthday today … Charlie from Abbostford, Malachi from North Ryde, Ava from Mount Riverview and Spencer from Mildura.

And belated birthday shout outs go to Bailey from Craigburn and Florrie from Hazelbrook. 

And because a bunch of you will be celebrating birthdays in the second half of December, when we’re off-the-air, and we don’t want you to miss out – we’re going to be punching out ADVANCE birthday shout-outs … we’ll call them the Extra Special Xmas Baby Shout Outs …  

Happy ‘early’ birthday to… William from Ivanhoe, Carina from Ashmont, Ofri from Chatswood, Sulian from Albany Creek, Adam from Mount Duneed, Edie from Kadina, Harry from Craigburn, Levi from Marrickville, Mila from Appin, Junho from Atwell, Lucy from Wahroonga, Zac from Upper Mount Gravatt, Felicity from Wagga Wagga, Addison from Goulburn, Harry from Ivanhoe, Anika from Exeter, Grace from Woongarrah and Lily from Koroit. 

Classroom shout outs go to… Class 3R and Miss Roden at St Finbarrs Catholic Primary School in Byron Bay, class 5/6M and 6H at Bradbury Public School, class 3/4A and Miss Hamilton at Grovely State School, class 3S and Mr Seymour at St Joseph’s Primary School in Wauchope, class 5/6KG at Mt Carmel School in Yass, class 5/6G at Dandenong South Primary School, class 7I at Bray Park State High School and good luck to Miss Martin at St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School in Clermont.  

The S’Quiz Answers:

  1. Dave
  2. 18
  3. Orion