Sunday, 31 October 2010


This is what the Old Girl said to me when we were playing pool last night. I had sent one of her balls away from the hole and in a difficult position, snookered behind three of my balls.

She used to say the same thing when we played croquet on the front lawn at our Christchurch place. The lawn was large enough for a decent sized croquet pitch and I used to enjoy knocking her balls into the shrubbery. Its a man thing I suppose.

Friday, 29 October 2010


Howard Becker's Outsiders broke new ground in the early 1960s, arguing that social deviance is a more common phenomenon than perceived and that conventional wisdom that social deviants are pathological is incorrect. Becker's seminal study remains the most piercing exploration about unconventional individuals and their position in' normal' society. Not surprisingly Becker used examples of musicians, particularly 'dance musicians' in his study. He concluded that musicians, due to a combination of inherency and conditioning, demonstrate a disregard for society's norms and adopt erratic and bizarre behavioural traits  that they believe are normal. A case in point is Richard (of RBB) an accomplished bass player who has backed many top musicians, written his own compositions and who teaches his art as both a profession and a passion. OK so far? Yes, but this self-same Richard, by his own admission has seen his Aunty's bum - 

"One of my first memories, for some strange reason, is seeing Aunty's bum. Sorry, but that's the way life goes sometimes - I don't remember seeing a smiling face, just a bum."  

He also photographed his daughter in a hotel's women's toilets, used scatological references in dealing with one of his female students and, I am reliably informed, was once evicted from a Musical Society social function for anti-social behaviour. Deviant? I think so.



I pay my rates. They are bloody expensive. I get some mediocre roading for it. I also get roadside rubbish collection and bottle collection. Hey! I have to pay for the official rubbish bags. Why do I have to pay when I take my rubbish to the transfer station?

I loaded up the trailer with the garden waste that I generated in my gardening blitz last weekend. I drove to the transfer station. I unloaded the trailer (no assistance offered) into the large skips and had to pay $27 for the privilege. No wonder some people just dump their rubbish by the side of the road. Why penalise people who go to the effort to take their rubbish to the proper place?

Wednesday, 27 October 2010


(... and so nice to see that the two The Hobbit films are to be made here regardless of the fact that it was a rort by Warner Brothers).

I've been to the big smoke for a couple of days and it is really good to be back home. Today I was driving around Glen Innes in Auckland (kind of like a Nuova Lazio of the North) and was struck by how soulless it looked. Guys in hoodies ( it was hot) walking the streets or driving aggressively; fast food outlets spilling out fat and pasty-faced people; an empty library (apart from those using the free internet); busy streets, full carparks and cheap housing. Everything looked grey. Arriving home to a blue and fresh-looking bay lifted my spirits. I was offered a job today, managing a community based education facility. It is a very worthwhile operation and ticks most of the boxes for me. The chance to use my skills and experience. The opportunity to contribute something worthwhile back into society. Something to do. A bit of money coming in. But, they wanted me to work. I said no.

To be more exact they wanted me to work 4 days a week. If this was close to home it would not be a problem but 4 days a week would mean that I would be spending more days a week in Auckland than at home.

The Wine Guy wasn't happy. He went to a tasting and couldn't differentiate between a Cabernet and a Shiraz. In wine country this is kind of like not knowing your arse from your elbow. He was glad to get back home too and finished off the rest of the Sacred Hill Chardonnay that was in the fridge.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010


I was up early this morning (7.30) as I am off to the city. The Wine Guy has a wine tasting this evening

and I am checking out a job tomorrow.

The weekenders have all gone home so the bay is very quiet. It is a lovely morning here with no wind and it is sunny. The harbour is like glass, perfectly inviting for kayaking. I'd love to play golf also but have to get away. I've got a busy day after all . I have to meet a friend for coffee at Kingsland in the afternoon and there are some book shops I have to visit.
Arriverderci! (Italian for See Ya.)

Monday, 25 October 2010


Saturday was for gardening (see previous post), relaxing in the shade and then neighbours around for dinner - marvellous.
Sunday was going out on my sister's boat. We went out towards the Hen and Chicken islands. The weather was great, with calm seas and a nice temperature. I caught a decent sized Kawahai which we later smoked and had with dinner.

I also, on the same line at the same time caught a White faced Stormy Petrel which became entangled on the line. When the Kawahai are 'running' and breaking water, thousands of these Petrels and other birds flock around to feed on the shrimp and other marine creatures that the Kawahai chase. It is an amazing sight. I carefully pulled the line in, and we reversed the boat as well until we could grab the bird and free it. It flew away none the worse for wear.

I then pulled the fish in. We had been joking as to whether someone could beat that by catching three different species on the same line - fish, bird and animal when a hump back whale surfaced not far from the boat. We cautiously followed it, keeping the legal distance and saw it surface several times before we left it. Fantastic. This was the closest I had been to a whale and I was most impressed.

Monday morning was kayaking. The bay was absolutely calm and it was sunny. We had a good paddle around before coming ashore and adding rocks to the breakwater we are building to capture a bit more sand for our 'beach'. Afternoon was sitting on the deck doing crosswords and reading. When it gets a bit cooler I will finish off some of the gardening that I was doing on Saturday (no chain-saw to be involved).


Saturday, 23 October 2010


Boy its hot here today.

I decided to trim a couple of trees at the front of the house so got out the old chain-saw that hadn't been used for a while and fired it up. I've mentioned before that I'm not much of a handyman but am willing to give anything a go. Propped in one of the trees I was merrily sawing away at a branch when I noticed that my hand was getting wet. looking down I noticed that the vibrations of the machine had unscrewed the petrol cap and, as I had the saw almost upside down, petrol was running down my arm. This, coupled with a hot and most likely out of condition chain-saw was not a good combination. With difficulty I turned it off before I was immolated.

I resumed the job with a saw and a long-handled axe. This was not easy whilst up a tree but I managed to get the job done. I decided that doing stuff like this at midday on a sweltering hot day was not a good idea after all. The trees looked like giant locusts had been eating them but hey, they are now trimmed which was what The Old Girl wanted.
She also wants me to fix the dishwasher. Now where's my hammer?

Friday, 22 October 2010


Richard, if you are short of material for the folk concert, can I suggest this?

Note how the bass player is comfortably obscured at the back.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Tuesday, 19 October 2010


Blogging tonight has been very boring. It seems that all the schoolteachers, and the school cleaners all go off-line when strikes are on. I know that they are supposed to 'down tools' (interesting expression that -ed) at 5 pm. but you would have thought that they could have spared a thought for the non-professionals out here in the ether that look forward to their little gems? I left a rude comment on Richard's blog (I hope Shelley doesn't see it), a corny one on Robert's and just a word on TSB's. It seems that the poor old teachers have worn themselves out with their industrial action and have probably gone to bed early.


Fluffy is smart enough to fart a lot and try to drive Richard out of bed but can he play the piano?

Monday, 18 October 2010


Angry Jesus said in my previous post:

"You old boys should be thinking about older women. I am not impressed."

Sunday, 17 October 2010


TSB said in a comment in my previous post:
"Snooker can be a lot of fun, especially after a few glasses of a robust red, or beer, or anything alcoholic really.
Cigars add to the ambience.
Women don't."

He must be getting a bit old.


Today the weather has been atrocious. It is totally different from yesterday with wind and rain and general crappiness so when old Paddy from down the road said to come and play snooker it was welcome. I played with Craig the plumber and Paddy had an even older mate Steve as his partner. Paddy and Steve play in billiards and snooker competition so are quite good. They are also quite devious, often going for a real tricky shot that leaves the cue ball hidden behind a lot of others. I'm a bit 'rip, shit and bust' when it comes to playing and tend to concentrate on trying to sink a ball without being concerned as to where the cue ball ends up. Needless to say Craig and I lost 2-0. It was good though. A nice way to spend a grey afternoon.

Saturday, 16 October 2010


I got the petrol weed eater going today and decided to use that to cut the lawn grass instead of using the #**#** hand mower. This machine makes a much more satisfactory manly noise on a quiet Saturday afternoon. The Old Girl took advantage of the sunshine and hung out washing. Who would have thought that grass clippings would stick to wet sheets? Having noticed this I started to brush the grass off. Hearing the back door opening I quickly removed myself to the other side of the garden kind of like the way Mr Bean did in one of his films, or Peter Sellers did in The Party. 

The Old Girl called out to me not to trim the grass near the washing. I replied 'as if I would'. Who would have thought? "Not a man at any rate" said the Old Girl who just looked over my shoulder as I'm typing this.


Saturday morning has been bright and sunny with no wind for a change. A call from the tenants of our rental up the road had me going there first thing to repair a broken water line. The Old Girl said I should call a plumber. Oh she of little faith. OK, to be fair I did repair said line a week ago and it failed but only because I put the connecting piece in back to front. I made TOG come with me as plumber's apprentice. She complained at this but it was good company and just as well as when we drove all the way into town to buy a fitting (and where they told me that I had put the other one in back to front), I discovered that I had left my wallet at home. Luckily TOG had her wallet with her and even more luckily she stayed in the car so didn't hear the plumbing world person tell me that I had put the other one in back to front. I told her that it was equipment failure. She gave me a funny look but I think I got away with it. On the way back out to McLeod Bay we went for a coffee at the marina area. Marvellous. Sitting outside enjoying good coffee and watching the boats was nice.

After completing the job we went to Ocean Beach which is close to where we live. We walked along to the end and over the large rock formations to perch above the pounding surf. It was stunningly beautiful made more so by the small islands offshore and the unusual rock formations above. A great place for contemplation on big questions like; do sea-horses have hooves; are crabs bad-tempered; if you fish for fish why don't you meat for meat or vegetable for vegetable. Stuff like that. Back home to have a leisurely afternoon in the garden and on the deck. Magic.

Thursday, 14 October 2010


Like oil levels, tyre pressure checking for women seems to be an impossibility. Women are so practical in most other ways but when it comes to these basics they seem to rely on divine providence (I wonder if Mrs Second or Mrs Angry Jesus have problems).

The Old Girl's Peugeot has badly worn front tyres way beyond what they should be showing. They will have to be replaced early. They are Pirelli low profile and cost a fortune. We received a Magnamail brochure through the mail, one of those that screams at us on the cover that we have probably won $25,000, all we have to do is order something and see. They have a 'Fast Inflate Air Compressor for sale for $49.90. This runs off the car battery and can also check tyre pressures. I'm tempted to buy it because the 50 bucks could save hundreds in tyre replacement.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010


There has been a lot of criticism of the latest Commonwealth Games and admittedly a lot of it is deserved. The games are running though and by and large events are being completed to everyone’s satisfaction.
A disturbing feature however has been the groundswell of (ill-informed) opinion that the Commonwealth Games is a dinosaur and should be done away with. Many people have been claiming that the World Games and Olympic Games are the only valid competitions.
I worry about that. They tend to be just a glorification of USA and how much money has gone into promoting the training. Earlier I wrote a post on a US Olympic skier who trains in NZ in the odd-season. She has an entire entourage of trainers, coaches and assistants working all year round to perfect her performance. Is this sport?
I find it refreshing to watch the Commonwealth Games and seeing small nations in with a chance. A bit of dedication and commitment goes a long way and can be rewarded. Its is actually nice to see finals made up of a number of different countries and not dominated by just a couple of nations.

If you are record obsessed then sure, the Commonwealth Games winners are not always recording the best in the world but sport is all about the performance of the day. When athletes are giving the best that they can on the day against each other that is sport and I love it.
I’m bloody glad that USA is not part of the Commonwealth. To my mind they ruin sport and represent everything bad that professionalism has brought.


We all give Second a hard time for his spelling and grammatical errors. What would he be capable of if he was a tattoo artist. I reckon that he could then make misspelling an art form.

Tuesday, 12 October 2010


p.s.. That's Richard in red.


Second Fiddle in his last post called Richard and I a couple of old women. Well, if I was an old woman I think I'd be this old biddy armed with an MP 40 and I'd shoot his gonads off.

Monday, 11 October 2010



The Curmudgeon: Hello!

Richard (of RBB): That was quick.

The Curmudgeon: Where have you been? Its 10 to 9 and people are asking where this morning's post is. They're desperate. I can't stand the pressure. I..

Richard (of RBB): Chill out man. Relax. Its not that important..

The Curmudgeon: What! You must be mad. The post Richard. The blog. You're needed.

Richard (of RBB): Nah. This holiday is giving me a new perspective. I had a mellow session last night. Everything came together. Everything, if you know what I mean.

The Curmudgeon: Forget the sexual innuendo will you. Get your mind on the job (sorry about that sexual innuendo ed.). Start composing. You can dictate and I'll type it straight into the surrogate blog. Quickly. People are out there waiting. Its a big day for some of them. No sleep-ins. Classes looming. We're at the barricades man.

Richard (of RBB): Actually I was thinking of giving it all up. I've got a few bass lines to practice and my speed needs adjusting and (OK Shelley. I'll be right there). Look I've got to go.

The Curmudgeon: Wait. Wait. How about a little something about Jaspar's centre that you've found in Tauranga. Its like the polar opposite of Nuova Lazio. Or, how about the fact that you walked along the beach and you thought that someone was beside you. Mystical thoughts flooded your brain as you conjured up images of Jesus, St John the Baptist, Captain Oates etc. until you looked and there was someone next to you. It was Shelley. Or, how about..

Richard (of RBB): Got to go. Ciaio!

The Curmudgeon: Richard! Richard! Hell..


Sunday, 10 October 2010

Life in a Scotch Sittingroom #2 episode 1

This is so good it has to be shared.

ivor cutler, "looking for truth..."

I couldn't find the "I've got no common sense" clip but this one gives you a good idea of Ivor Cutler's brilliance.



Alf Garnett's interpretation of the bible is not dissimilar to Second's. They both construe things to suit their own agendas



Richard (of RBB): Finally. I've been ringing for hours. Have you had the phone off the hook?

The Curmudgeon: Yes, It's bloody Sunday.

Richard (of RBB): Bloody Sunday? Isn't that..

The Curmudgeon: Look. What do you want?

Richard (of RBB): I have been up all night. Too wired to sleep. I need you to post this. Now

The Curmudgeon: OK OK.


Second’s got no common sense
Second has no sense
Seconds got no common sense
He aint got no sense

Second believes in Jesus Christ
He believes he’s seen the way
Second believes God will come again
He doesn’t agree that Gods gay

etc. repeated in three voices.

Saturday, 9 October 2010


Moody teenagers are a universal.


Saturday 9th October 5.30AM

Ring ring, ring ring, ring ring, ring ring, ring ring, ring ring, ring ring....

The Curmudgeon: Arghhh hello

Richard (of RBB): You're up? Good. I have an idea for a post.

The Curmudgeon: Whaaa? Whothafuckisthiswassup?

Richard (of RBB): Get it together man, this is important. Take this down...

There once was a crow who had a stable of women, some pretty, some pretty horrible, who wanted to show his townsfolk what they were missing. One day he came up with the good idea to parade his stable down the main street of the town with them showing off their assets. He approached the burghers and said "I am going to 
parade my stable down the main street of the town with them showing off their assets." Some of the burghers said that this is a good idea whilst quietly rubbing themselves via the pockets of their trousers. Other burghers said that this was a bad idea and contravened god's law which said that women should keep their knockers hidden especially in public places because it caused unnecessary thoughts and would lead to licentious behaviour. They also said this whilst 
quietly rubbing themselves via the pockets of their trousers. A vote was made and the resolution to allow the parade was strangely unanimous.

 Mr Crow duly had his parade and the townsfolk were mostly pleased. A few dissenters however were most displeased. Second, a quiet and unassuming dissenter but one who rigourously sticks to his principles jeered and called out from the sideline "Repent ye fornicators. Begone sisters of satan (apt alliteration's artful aid). You must not defile me (I've got clean underpants on)". 
Mr Crow was perturbed and looked around for support from the burghers. They were too busy keeping eyes on the parade (for council purposes) and were assuming casual poses with hands in pockets (albeit cramped ones). Spotting Angry Jesus on the footpath Mr Crow appealed to him for assistance. "Bugger" said Angry Jesus "Just when I thought I was having a day off". "Oh well" he said "Needs must" and glared at Second who was shaking his fists at the biggest and most voluptuous of the paraders. 

"He who casts the first stone.." Angry Jesus said to Second, "You remember the rest I'm sure you God botherer". 
Blushing at having been caught out ogling the paraders and nervously looking about for his wife, Second momentarily forgot his pacifist principles and looked about for a stone to throw at Mr Crow. He couldn't find one as the street sweepers had been and cleaned them all up (which gave Second a professional glow of pride). He chose to throw the only thing he had in his hand, a second-hand copy of Don Quixote. With pin-point accuracy the throw caught Mr Crow on the side of the head, knocking him off the shoulders of the amazon who had been carrying him and brought the parade to a halt. Shaking himself Mr Crow spotted Second and said cryptically "No more credit for you" whatever that meant. Second seemed to understand and melted away into the already dispersing crowd. The moral of this story is "Dont throw stones at crows, let your Cervantes do it for you instead".

Friday, 8 October 2010


Richard (of RBB): Can you post this for me. I'm in the zone but no-one is recording me. Old Thelonius just about sums it up (admittedly I've had a couple of Chardonnays).

The Curmudgeon: OK. Take care. Have a glass of water between each glass of wine Old Man.


The Curmudgeon: Over to you Richard

Richard (of RBB): Thanks. I have an important message.

Second has been obsessing about gayness in recent posts and comments.
Here's something to remind him of the gay old time we used to have.


Richard (of RBB) is away for a few days and is concerned that he will not be able to post for his loyal followers so has asked me to patch in a few important updates while he is away.

Richard (of RBB): Can you patch in a few important updates while I am away.

The Curmudgeon: OK

So, where to start? Well, due to the time zone difference do not expect a morning post before 10AM. Sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.

As there was a RBB post already today there is no need to do another - besides I can't be stuffed.

See you tomorrow.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010


The tide was way out this morning so I went beach-combing to look for the flat part of scallop shells.

The Old Girl wants these to build her garden bricks. I was able to go way out, further than usual. Maybe it has something to do with Spring tides. You can find all sorts of stuff at low tide - tennis balls, fishing lines, hooks and sinkers, shoes, headless torsos - oops, imagination taking over again. I did find a divers fin though. Just one.

No severed leg attached.

Tuesday, 5 October 2010


I had to talk to the FBI recently to report some scamsters.

The Curmudgeon: Hello. Is that the FBI? I’ve been told that you can help me with a scamster problem.
Agent Sparrow: That is correct sir. I am Agent Sparrow. Please state your problem.
The Curmudgeon: Should I call you Mr Sparrow, Agent Sparrow?
Agent Sparrow: That would be Miss Sparrow if you followed that line of personal address sir, but as that is inappropriate you should call me Agent Sparrow.
The Curmudgeon: Uh, OK, sorry.
Agent Sparrow: Time is at a premium sir. We have miscreants to pursue. Please state your problem.
The Curmudgeon: Oh, um yes. On the internet I joined a site thinking that I was only registering to look and found that the site immediately charged me $159 (US dollars!).
Agent Sparrow: Was this site sir in the nature of prurience, salaciousness, vileness or otherwise socially harmful in its content?
The Curmudgeon: Gosh no. You must be thinking of TSB. I would be too embarrassed to go there. Besides I have bad memories of when I was young and borrowed my brothers magazines. Every time I, um, ‘had a look’ at them someone walked in to my bedroom. Boy that was embarrassing, I…
Agent Sparrow: TSB? Is this a special interest person we should be looking at sir?
The Curmudgeon: No, no. Forget I mentioned him. No, this site was an on-line auction site that purports to be like Trade Me or E-Bay. I think that it is a scam as they set themselves up to immediately deduct money once someone registers and before they bid for anything.
Agent Sparrow: I understand sir. Do you want us to take them out?
The Curmudgeon: Take them out?
Agent Sparrow: Terminate with extreme prejudice sir.
The Curmudgeon: Gosh no, although they probably deserve it. I just want you to stop them from taking my money.
Agent Sparrow: Mmm. This is a little of a low priority for me sir. Are you aware that I graduated top of my class in marksmanship and silent strangulation?
The Curmudgeon: Really? Um, Agent sparrow sir/madam, what are you wearing right now?
Agent Sparrow: Can you be more specific sir?
 The Curmudgeon: You know. What have you got on…under your uniform? Do you have a gun strapped to your thigh? Er, this is not for my edification you understand. It is for TSB. Remember TSB. You can look him up on…
Agent Sparrow: Step away from the keyboard sir. Keep your hands above desk level. Someone will contact you in person immediately. Have a good day.

Saturday, 2 October 2010


I scoff at people who send money away to those Nigerian scam organisations and who send money away to collect bogus lottery wins but today I just threw away about $200 signing up to Swipe Auctions ( I was in a rush and careless. I have been getting a lot of unsolicited e-mails from this site tempting me with very cheap new goods sold on auction (i-pads for $12 etc.). I checked it out today and saw that it is a speedy auction site kind of like Trade Me. I put all of my details in to join as you do with Trade Me so that I could check out the auction deals as a member. I assumed that I would only pay anything if I actually bid for something, how wrong I was. As soon as I had confirmed my credit card number a message of 'confirmed sale' came up. What the fuck? It seems that by joining there was an automatic charge of USD151 (about NZ $200) to 'buy' bids - 300 to be precise meaning that if I bid for an item every time I click the bid button counts down that number. Now normally when you buy something via internet with a credit card there is the amount you are paying right next to where you put the credit card details. Not on this site. The commitment to USD151 is in a totally different panel (amongst dozens of other busy, flashing panels. What a fuckwit! Once I realised this I sought to do a reversal. Surprise surprise. This cannot be done on-line. You have to download a claim form and post it in to start the long convoluted process. I can kiss goodbye to that money I think. What worries me is that I'm not convinced that this is not the total charge. It might be a monthly;y fee but the site is so bloody complicated. If you are tempted by this site just remind yourself of how bloody stupid I was and keep away from it.


Women are amazing. Somewhere along the line they seem to have learnt to do things that men would never think of doing.
We have a large house up north and encourage friends and family to visit. The reason we bought a house larger than what we need for ourselves is so that guests can have their own space (spare bedrooms, bathroom, kitchen and lounge). It works very well. When women or couples visit, on leaving they clean the kitchen and bathroom, vacuum the floors and put sheets and towels in the washing machine. No-one asks them to do this they just do it. Men do not. The most that a man does is to put the towel back on the towel rack. We don't think that there is anything wrong with this. We just don't think.


Well why not since Robert's been banging on about the Catholic Catechism and its virtues even while there's a backdrop of priests, b...