Saturday, 30 April 2011


The Old Girl was watching some of the royal wedding on TV last night and I saw a few snippets. While I think that they are all inbred dilettantes I must admit that it is good to see the pageantry and spectacle, something that the Americans wish they had. There's something great about seeing those carriages surrounded by the House Guard going down the Royal Mile. Watching it live caused a little bit of tension though as, with all sorts of nutters out there let alone terrorists, you never know if a shot could be fired, a pineapple lobbed or a bomb to go off. I bet that the security forces were relieved when the parade ended and they were safely back in Buckingham Palace. Earlier, at the ceremony I was pleased to see William almost nodding off during a super boring sermon from the bishop of London. I would have done the same thing (in fact I do and the Old Girl has to nudge me in the ribs). What I want to say in this post though is that there was one very, very disappointing episode. I know that we expect sports teams, in particular the all Blacks to not know the words to their national anthems and to just stand there saying nothing or at best mumbling or mouthing some words.

I was surprised though to see HRH Queen Elizabeth to be doing the same. During 'God Save the Queen' I watched her when the camera was on her and she not only didn't sing the words but she didn't even bother to mumble or mouth them. She just stood there stony-faced.

Now I don't know if she doesn't know the words or if she just couldn't be bothered but it was a bad show. Everyone else was singing. Disappointing really.

Thursday, 28 April 2011


So MMP has finally bit us on the arse. I know that we have had to put up with a lot of crap over the last 20 odd years with Peters, Hide et al, but the true horribleness of it now surfaces with that silly old has-been Brash ditching the National party to slip up ACT like some sort of candiru going up a urethra. Listening to him being interviewed over the last week has been like a visit to the proctologist. When really pushed, he finally responded to Mary's and Catherine's probing questions with the admission that he was hedging his bets, covering his arse and 'having a plan B", meaning that if he couldn't get the ACT leadership he would revert back to that other party of old blazers - National. So, Don Brash heading up ACT. Yippee. What will he do? Outlaw poverty. Ban bolshie wimmin. Stop borrowing from overseas. Dig up our National parks. Sell our children. Just wait and see.

Sunday, 24 April 2011


TC and Second were looking up to me as the 'Great White Hope' for a while there. They saw me as an alternative to Richard (of RBB) for daily posting, one that would bring information to the masses without blathering on about double basses or toilet stop frequency. I took on the role but lost my head with the first rush of enthusiasm.

It later dawned on me that the responsibility of daily posting is too much and no wonder that R churns out such rubbish.

Wednesday, 20 April 2011


Today is Easter Thursday or Holy Thursday or Maundy Thursday, whichever form of Christianity you have been brought up under or just Thursday if you haven't.
The Christians believe that on Maundy Thursday Jesus had his last supper before arranging to be executed on Friday which for some reason is known as Good Friday which might have been a very early example of a typo where the writer had intended to write God Friday and put in an extra O. Writing on wax tablets, carving on sandstone or trying to write on papyrus that kept rolling up must have been a hassle so no wonder the scribe elected to just let the mistake go. I won't go into why Holy Thursday is also known as Maundy Thursday as that is way too complicated. It is better to just know it as Easter Thursday because we know that it is the Thursday before Easter Friday which everyone knows is a holiday so we remember it. Easter Thursday, known to be the day of the last supper is also known as the day of the feet washing for the people who were at the last supper.

Little is known of this event but I believe that it is important and the two things are very clearly connected. Jesus, knowing he had a big day coming up no doubt invited a few buddies around for a drink and some eats. The friends were basically fishermen and probably weren't the most cultured and chic people, and, being away from their normal mode of transport, their boats, would have walked to J's place. Other forms of transport prevalent at the time were chariots and ass riding. Both chariot horses and asses, while being better than shanks pony, had the nasty side effect of dropping big piles of dung everywhere. This was Thursday remember which is usually pay day and a big going out night. Given that God Friday was to be a Holy Day (as opposed to a holiday) and that all the shops and bars would be closed, most if not all of the usual Friday night revellers would have elected to go out on Thursday night thereby doubling the already heavy traffic. No wonder then that J's guests would have had to step in steaming piles of excrement on the way to the party. On their arrival and their clamouring to get in Jesus would have naturally been shocked at the state of their feet and demanded that they wash them. Being basically sailors and no doubt had already had a few, a fight or argument ensued. The guests, remonstrating would have said to Jesus "if you want our feet washed then do it yourself". Jesus, I'm sure would have retorted "This is the last supper I'm inviting you bastards to, ever!"


Richard (of RBB) reports that the tour is going well. A Morse code report received today detailed the highs and lows so far. The lows according to Richard were the lack of up to the minute telecommunications including internet in the Marlborough Sounds. The highs he said were almost full houses at the gigs he has been playing in the lodges - "Five people last night" he keyed enthusiastically. I didn't have the heart to remind him that the bad weather has cut off some of the lodges so he literally has captive audiences.
He said that they are off to another location today, using local transport as the roads are unsuitable for their own cars.
Good luck Richard!

Tuesday, 19 April 2011


While Richard (of RBB) is away I thought that I'd tidy up the bus station. As regards buses they are OK but the best form of transport is the train so I've arranged to have rail put into the station. To herald the arrival I thought about klaxons and sirens but then, as the Bass Bag is purportedly about music I thought that musical instruments would be more appropriate.

Its a better use of the French Horn. Now, if only I could find a suitable mode of transport for the Double Bass.

Note the desirable direction it is going.


.....stuck with Richard (of RBB) on holiday in the internet-South for a couple of weeks.
She probably had to drag him away from his computer on Sunday and make a mad dash to the ferry

"No, no - they need me"

By now, two days later he will be suffering withdrawal symptoms, nervously chewing his fingernails down to the quick, fretting (pun intended) and fussing, making awful droning sounds on his double bass.

He will be wondering what is happening at the bus station. Will anyone visit? If they do how will they know what he had for breakfast or when he went to the toilet? How will he keep them informed?

Don't worry big fella. That bus has gone. I predict a renewed interest in Second's blogs. Coming up - 'What wallpaper Jesus chose for the front room" and "The favourite home brews of The Holy Trinity".

Sunday, 17 April 2011


I've been busy recently with my studies, the charity project I'm leading and putting together a proposal for an overseas wine venture so I haven't been posting very much. I offered to host Richard's Wind Bass Bag while he is on holiday but didn't expect to have to do anything. Like real estate I just assumed that the money would roll in.
Its only been a few hours into the job and already Second (not the blogger known as Freako Second but that could be one of Second's alter egos) is complaining that I'm not posting up to Richard's voluminous standard. He said "Just post a picture of some buses and you think we are happy? We expect an account of your morning, the cat, your wife..."  
I would like to say to Second that if I wore Richard's voluminous black underpants

then things could be different but, you know me, I don't like to be rude.
To keep Second off my back here is what happened so far today.

My morning

A nice sleep in followed by a big breakfast (poached eggs on toasted home made bread with hollandaise sauce and fried potatoes on the side), then a 4km walk along, and a swim (body surfing) at Ocean Beach.

My cat

Willow was introduced to the neighbours new cat today. I don't know the cats name but it is a cute and very friendly little black and white number. Too friendly for Willow as it decided to come into our house

I don't think that there will be a great relationship in the making.

My wife

Well, technically The Old Girl is not my wife but we have been together for 23 years and as she is no one else's wife I guess that I have some claim over her (I don't like that ownership thing in relationships).
Her work takes her away a lot and we don't often get a chance to spend whole weekends together. This weekend she is home and all next week and Easter. Great, although my bad habits, poor housekeeping and aforementioned sloppy gardening techniques might drive her to seeking solace in partaking of illegal substances.

My afternoon

Leaving the Old Girl to do the gardening I walked down the road to play snooker with the girls

Actually, to be honest, it wasn't with the girls but with the old guys

but it was still fun.

Leon Redbone: Walking Stick


Richard (of RBB) forgot to ask me to look after his bus station while he is away on holiday.
Buses are waiting

No problem Richard, I know that you were busy. I'll host it for you over the next two weeks.
The fees have unfortunately been increased though because of the cost of broadband connection up North. I won't go into technical detail but you should understand that extra effort is required to push the data up the tubes all the way North. OK?

I suggest that everyone wanting hosting should send me their bank account details and access passwords. I will uplift an appropriate amount for the service.
Thank you. Have a nice day.

Gimme, gimme, gimme

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Sunday, 10 April 2011


The Old Girl, who is home and not working this weekend, decided to take to my garden. The nerve of the woman, she cast aspersions on my gardening abilities, identifying weeds growing amongst the tomatoes, the capsicum, the flax, the native grasses, the herbs and the flowers. Admittedly there were a few and of many varieties but I had identified most myself and was quietly keeping an eye on them.
I had given them names (not knowing their real botanical ones) and was intrigued as to how they grew and interacted with their surrounding plants. I had named them after Government front bench members, which, given their political motivations seems appropriate.

Here are some of them:

John Key (Shonkey)

The biggest weed of all, insidious in its apparent innocuousness but has managed to infiltrate the garden with a bunch of horrible associates.

My weeds that I have dedicated to him are:



Wandering Jew 

Bill English

Closely followed by this one. Malevolent with crocodile smile it has hidden barbs. Best handled at a distance of with heavy gloves.

My weeds that I have dedicated to him are:

Shepherd's Purse


Alligator weed

Gerry Browlee

A big obnoxious weed that is hard to get rid of

My weeds that I have dedicated to him are:

Oil-seed Rape


Cathedral Bells

Judith Collins

Friday, 8 April 2011


The Old Girl was watching American Idol tonight and I saw this guy playing double bass (stand up bass according to the Yanks). The judges raved about how 'revolutionary' he was to bring a 'stand up' bass to the show and that "no-one plays those anymore".
Huh, Richard (of RBB) could tell them different.
Casey did a pretty good job with the Fogarty song though.


What I have learnt so far at school - see video clip below.

Taking TSB's advice I have modified my wardrobe

And have found an appropriate logo and tag-line for my advertising material

Thursday, 7 April 2011


I dressed up yesterday when I went to class. I put long trousers on (chinos), wore socks and boots and a shirt with a vest. For me this was quite a step up from my normal wear which is usually shorts and a t-shirt or just shorts.

I'm actually dreading the day (soon) after I 'graduate' from class and join the workforce. I will be expected to wear proper trousers, a collared shirt with a tie and tidy shoes!

Sunday, 3 April 2011


The Old Girl often says that I talk too much. Looking through some old school yearbooks I found this that
I hadn't seen for years. This she says is proof.


We went for a long walk this morning. The one we did we haven't done since before the big storm in February. It is the Little Munro Bay walk to Reotahi. This is a stunner, folowing the bay around past the marine reserve and the historic (abandoned) freezing works to do a semi-circle and return to our house. We discovered that the track was closed.

Carefully reading the big sign on the bigger fence sealing off the track we not so carefully made our way around it and continued on the track. There were a few washouts and clay and rock falls that whilst impeding easy walking could still be negotiated. Half way along though we came across a massive avalanche. Half of the hill behind Mount Albury has come down taking away very large trees along with track leaving  a jumble of rocks, bush, trees and debris which we negotiated our way through. As we were forced to go lower than the track used to we discovered some amazing boulder formations at the waters edge and narrow canyons and caves. Making our way up again we rediscovered the track only to find it has disappeared again and a giant chasm has been formed that definitely wasn't there a couple of months ago. Progress would have been impossible if it hadn't been for the big rope that someone had thoughtfully provided. The rope is like one of those massive hawsers that tie ships to wharves only made of rope-twine. It is tied to a tree at the top of the chasm and dangles down to almost the bottom.

Taking turns we reverse abseiled up kicking our feet against the bank and hauling ourselves up to the top. I'm proud of the Old Girl doing it but she has abseiled before and is pretty adventurous. At the top the remains of the walkway complete with some wired steps just disappear over the edge - dangerous. The path at the top (going the other way) became more walkable as we went along and, near the old freezing works was back to normal. Its about another 40 minutes from here to our place so when we arrived home we felt that we had had a pretty good work-out. We have friends coming to stay at Easter so we'll suggest a nice stroll and take them on this walk .

A nice troll


I like John Oliver. His retakes of the news are insightful and very funny. Have a look via the link below at his latest review of Facebook...