The Friday Funny – replicating successful strategies

In an environment where discussions of evidence-based policy and practice sometimes focus exclusively on identifying ‘what works’ and scaling it up, we thought it timely to share this story where the joke is on the Australians. ┬áThe joke has been published in many different places – including a South African government bulletin – we found this version at the South Africans in London Club.

Three South Africans and three Australians are travelling by train to a cricket match at the World Cup in England. At the station, the three Aussies each buy a ticket and watch as the three South Africans buy just one ticket between them.

“How are the three of you going to travel on only one ticket?” asks one of the Aussies. “Watch and learn,” replied one of the South Africans.

They all board the train. The Aussies take their respective seats but all three South Africans cram into a toilet and close the door behind them.

Shortly after the train departs from the Station, the conductor comes around collecting tickets. He knocks on the toilet door and says,
“Ticket please.” The door opens just a crack and a single arm emerges with a ticket in hand. The conductor takes it and moves on.

The Aussies see this and agree it was quite a clever idea. So after the game they decide to copy the South Africans on the return trip and save some money – (them being clever with money, and all that!).

When they get to the station, they buy a single ticket for the return trip. To their astonishment, the South Africans don’t buy a ticket at all.

“How are you going to travel without a ticket?” asked one very perplexed Aussie.

“Watch and learn,” answered a South African.

When they board the train the three Aussies cram into a toilet and soon after the three South Africans cram into another one nearby.

The train departs and shortly afterwards, one of the South Africans emerges and walks over to the toilet where the Aussies are hiding. He knocks on the door and says, “Ticket please” …


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