Monthly Archives: August, 2012

Corner shop/Mortgage Industry Association of Australia/Residential – Earlwood, NSW

Unlike a lot of places featured here on Past/Lives, this corner shop has had some real effort put into it to try to disguise its past. Reader Jill believes that her parents ran a corner shop along Riverview Road, Earlwood in 1956, and given a lack of extant corner shops, this could be it. Of course, it’s undergone a few changes: the shopfront facing the main road has been noticeably bricked up, and the colour scheme makes it look like the Joker’s hideout, but it’s still easily recognisable as a corner shop.

Also noteworthy: this address was once home to the jokers of the Mortgage Industry Association of Australia, which is apparently now defunct. These days, it’s clearly just someone’s house, a house on which they probably have a mortgage. Unless it really is the Joker’s house. He wouldn’t have a mortgage, that guy’s rich.

KC Beauty Centre/Cut and Comb Hairdressing – Hurstville, NSW

Hurstville’s KC Beauty Centre is one of those places where you walk in an ug-mo and walk out a glamour. Pity they aren’t so concerned about their building’s appearance…but not a pity for Past/Lives. Look up (below)!

Before KC appeared on the scene, this place was home to the rather no-frills Cut and Comb Hairdressing. Did they call it that so as not to give people the wrong idea? Would the Shear and Shave sound too working class? The Crimp and Coif too hoity-toity? There’s a similarly named Cut & Comb Hairdressing at Penshurst now, so either this place moved or there’s a huge market for no-frills. I’m going with the latter; just ask KC – they didn’t even bother to invite the Sunshine Band.

Arnold’s Stationery & Balloons/Leased – Hurstville, NSW

The closure of balloon shops are so commonplace, almost everyone has been touched by a tragedy like this. But there’s still that attitude amongst balloon shop proprietors that ‘it’ll never happen to them’. Well guess what, Arnold? It did. The over-inflated Hurstville party store market suddenly burst like a…well, you know, and Arnold was left holding the bag. His inventory vanished like air from a deflating…well, you know, and before he knew it, Arnold’s stationery venture was stationary.

Unlike Arnold himself, who’s moved on, allowing a new tenant to breathe new life into the vacant shop like air into a…well, you know.

Hamburgers & BBQ Chicken/Restaurant & Take Away – Strathfield, NSW

The changing face of take-away in Strathfield. If you look closely, you can see the fading sign advertising hamburgers and BBQ chicken above the A/Cs. If you look even closer, you can see that this new shop sells ‘Mr. Dduckbocki and Miss Kkochi’. It’s not really all that different: dduckbocki is a kind of hot and spicy rice cake, while kkochi is skewered chicken. Whether or not you can get dduckbocki ‘with the lot’ is unknown, but what is clear is that Mr. Dduckbocki and Miss Kkochi clearly qualify as suicide food.

Shoe Store/Newsagent – Enfield, NSW

You may be shocked, as I was, to learn that this address has been a newsagent since at least 1951, when a Mr. C. G. Sternbeck was appointed a ‘new newsagent’ for the Burwood area. To put this into perspective, his phone number had a letter in it. In 1947, this place was vacated by a fruit and vegetable store, so I’d put its period as a shoe store between 1947 and 1951, unless it predates the greengrocer and that’s the world’s hardiest paint. Jury’s out until the sample comes back from the lab, it seems.