We’ve heard it before: ‘Twice is coincidence. Three times is a pattern.’ What this refrain gets at is another pithy statement – that the little things all add up.
This holds for a range of examples, be it ice core readings or a husband repeatedly returning home suspiciously late from work. And, it seems, a bigger picture can even be arrived at by studying sauce bottle labels over a number of years.
The sauce bottle label aficionado is Bernard Salt, better known as one of the country’s leading social commentators. His latest book More Decent Obsessions comprises some of his recent columns for The Australian newspaper in which he alternately vents and muses about manners and societal trends.
I spoke to Bernard about some of the patterns he has observed through his close study of Australians’ habits, as well as about what he has gleaned from reading labels on sauce bottles (aside from the obvious).
More Decent Obsessions is published by Melbourne University Press.
Interview broadcast on ArtSound FM.
Interview air date: 29 November 2014.