I know a lot of people probably wouldn’t want a book on their coffee table about bugs, but hear me out. It would be a book about bugs…but tasteful.
Okay, maybe we can make it about pest control or something. I know you guys have a kind of careers series going on, and you’re aiming to cover the history of basically every career in Melbourne from inception to current time, so why not pest and termite control? Frankston was the first to have them, I think, although that was back in the 1800s. No idea what people did for pest control back then. Maybe they just squashed them. Or maybe our changing diet of sugary and salty foods has drawn the insects in larger numbers, causing a pandemic that can only be kept at bay by modern, scientific pest control methods.
I don’t know. We can have a speculation section in the back, maybe. But the main bulk should be the history. From what I’ve heard, a traveling group started the first Melbourne pest control organisation back in 1880 or so. Of course, this was not at all regulated and was mostly just them going around and spraying chemicals over people’s homes. Not the good kind, either. So, no safety standards, no suits…it didn’t last long. People got a bit sick, and sometimes the termites and ants actually seemed to like the concoction and become even more numerous.
The first proper regulations came in around 1910, which greatly restricted the chemicals that could be sprayed around people’s homes. After that, it was just a steady process of the industry becoming more and more professional, until now it’s all about suits, specialised equipment and those long spray things.
I think it’s a solid base. Got some connections in the Mornington pest control industry , so interviews won’t be a problem. Oh, and we need tasteful photos of bugs. Just a few.