With millions of fans around the world, Gary is Australia's most famous goat. But it was a long and winding track that brought him and his owner together.
Gary the Goat and Jimbo Bazoobi are an Australian comedy duo who perform in Australian towns and have become very popular since beginning their comedy career in 2011, mostly through Facebook and YouTube, with their Facebook page recently surpassing 1.5 million 'likes'.
One of their slogans is "Jimbo tells dirty jokes and Gary does bugger all"!
How It All Began
Gary the Goat was bought by Jimbo for a case of beer in Gingin, Western Australia in December 2011 and since then the pair have been touring Australia, with some small breaks.
Here's how they got together...
Jimbo Baboozi was a comedian telling crude jokes in country towns when he met the animal who would become a superstar.
Not politically correct enough for the city, Baboozi developed an off-the-map reputation in the comedy world for asking local publicans if he could do a show that night.
Baboozi's jokes struck a chord in the country, and he began selling t-shirts with an unapologetically offensive slogan about goats printed on the front.
When he drove into the Western Australian town of Gingin, he was just looking for another pop-up pub gig, but his merchandise caught the attention of a local goat farmer.
"Someone asked if I wanted a goat for a case of beer," Baboozi said
"He said: 'Mate, you're selling goat t-shirts, why don't you step it up and actually get a goat?'"
Housing a goat in a small car wasn't ideal, and Baboozi planned to throw this goat over a random farmer's fence as soon as the joke wore off.
But to his surprise, Gary settled in.
"I was sleeping with him in the car," Baboozi said.
"I'd just give him a pat, a cuddle. About three days later I let him off the lead and said: 'Go wherever you want, mate.' But he followed me. I realised he actually wanted to be with me. He wasn't a hostage anymore."
The two of them were on their way to becoming best mates.
"As much as the life I love on the road, you need company. I was just surprised how much I loved looking after him," Baboozi said.
Gary's Chequered History
Gary the Goat and Jimbo often push boundaries as to where the goat is taken and where it's permitted, and has been in trouble with councils and even the police.
Here's a list of his somewhat nefarious antics...
- He received a threat by a local council to have him impounded at Castle Hill's Goat Track.
- In 2013 Gary was taken to court by New South Wales police after eating vegetation outside Sydney's Museum for Contemporary Art, though the AU$440 fine was dismissed by the judge. (see video below)
- On 16 May 2015 Gary the Goat's YouTube channel was 'indefinitely' suspended, though it was reinstated a few days later
- Gary has been thrown out, or banned from, more pubs, clubs and venues that you can imagine.
Jimbo reckons "Rules and regulations are stifling our culture to the point where the rule of law seems to have little to do with common sense, and if common sense has little to do with the rule of law our society is in trouble.”
Gary's YouTube Controversy
Gary the Goat’s YouTube channel was suspended for breaching the site’s community guidelines, which prohibit a variety of content such as nudity and graphic violence.
Videos of Gary and Mr Bazoobi don’t feature either — unless a naked goat counts — but are usually full of ribald swearing and potentially controversial content.
Under YouTube rules, anyone can “flag” a video they deem offensive, with YouTube staff then reviewing the content and making a ruling.
“I’m not going to pull it down if I’ve got 20,000 likes and three people are upset.”
Mr Bazoobi said his account had since been reinstated, much to the relief of his thousands of fans worldwide.
The Gary the Goat YouTube channel has almost 70,000 subscribers, while his Facebook page boasts 1.3 million followers.
To put that into perspective, he beats Home & Away in terms of Facebook popularity, and has more than three times as many fans as Prime Minister Tony Abbott.
“I’ve got no idea whether it’s the swearing or the political views or something else,” Mr Bazoobi said.
“The thing is, if I decided to do something that doesn’t upset anybody, Gary would probably have about three followers.”
Mr Bazoobi said he had once tried to “tone down” his comedy routine,
“but I didn’t get those belly laughs from the audience”.
“The only thing I guide my posts on is if no-one laughs. I’ll pull it down if everyone says it wasn’t funny,” he said.
“Gary brings more joy to people than distress. As long as the ledger is like that, I think it’s all right.”
“But I’m not going to pull it down if I’ve got 20,000 likes and three people are upset.”
“If I was doing something that was truly offensive, like being racist or homophobic or just being a bully or a c ..., people wouldn’t respond to it.”
YouTube said yesterday that it could not comment on individual accounts, with a spokeswoman pointing The Daily Telegraph to the site’s community guidelines.
Gary Gets Sick
In August 2016, it was discovered that Gary the Goat had terminal arthritis in his legs. Gary subsequently retired from performing with Jimbo at comedy shows in pubs. Gary was put on painkillers in hopes that he would respond to holistic treatment in order to forgo the amputation of his right toe. In November, Gary's toe was successfully amputated.
Check out some highlights of Gary the Goat's nine month tour...
WARNING: SOME OFFENSIVE LANGUAGE