Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Was that it?

Silk purses and sows ears.

Dear Leader had not much raw material to play with and I suppose that explains the crap we had yesterday. She had to fill sixty one - sixty one for God's sake - ministerial positions. As there are only about three people in her caucus with a brain capable of saying more than 'Yes, Dear Leader, no, Dear Leader, three bags full, Dear Leader' we were going to be struggling. A few things stand out.

Pondscum is under such stress and has to attend an anger management course so we will make him even less stressed by giving him a couple of new portfolios that he has never seen before. The hypocrisy of Mallard's punishment makes the proverbial wet bus ticket seem like a right royal flogging. Not being Sports Minister is a really severe punishment. 'Mr Bloggs you are found guilty of murder on two counts. I sentence you never to be Sports Minister. A sentence of not being Rugby World Cup Minister will run concurrently.' Does the Dear Leader really think we are all daft? Don't answer that.

Is it right that we have a dental nurse as Minister of both Police and Justice? Answers on a post card to M. Mouse, C/O L. Trotsky, The Kremlin, Wellington.

Comrade Carter in Education ? Pullease. If schools weren't already suffering enough from political correctness they have to try and survive Mr PC himself. Carter's reaction to his 'promotion'? 'I was quite happy with Conservation. Who is going to keep an eye on the Japanese whalers over the Christmas period?' He really said that and we now have him in charge of the education of the nation's kids. The PPTA was understandably delighted to have such a left wing apologist as their leader - they are getting one of their own back. Yuck.. 'He can now go from saving the whales to saving another endangered species - teachers'. We are not talking about people making idle after dinner conversation here, we are talking about running a country. It is pathetic.

All Auckland's problems have disappeared so the ministry set up to sort them out is dissolved. Pouff and its all gone. First, who will notice? Second, Tizard now gets the same money for doing less. North of $150k for carrying DL's handbag - I'd do it for two thirds that. On second thoughts I wouldn't do it for treble - just imagine what you could catch from it.

The Royal Touch

It will be Dear Leader's day today. Everyone who is daft enough to lead their lives within her penumbra will be waiting to see if they are to be scanning the situations vacant columns or taking their place at the deity's right hand. It is both nauseating and frightening. Loyal serfs crawl up to the throne either in search of the the 'Royal Touch' or a ticket to the scaffold. I am not sure if the real Royal Touch (a regal laying on of hands to cure scrofula (tuberculous cervical lymphadenopathy) - never worked) could be given more than once but the antipodean modern day version certainly can't. Pond Scum got the touch over the Heineken comments but now he has been dishing out the biffo it would appear he has to be thrown to the lions - well meercats.

The bloody woman has a way of humiliating people in such a subtle and cruel way. Bovver Boy, all tough and macho, is being publicly told by a woman (well sort of) to go to anger management. I'm sure our Trev wants to biff her as well but he has to appear for the last week all contrite and looking generally down at mouth. Rodney Hide wants to get a parliamentary privileges complaint up and running. Too late and a waste of time. Helen is doing much more and more publicly than any constitutional body could ever achieve.

So this afternoon we will see Mallard in charge of the Parliaments dunnies, the Dental Nurse elevated to the rank of seraphim (well she doesn't have a Y chromosome and therefore deserves it) and so on. Who cares? Their 'jobs' are only as instruments in the Dear Leader's plan. The don't make any decisions. Well I suppose they are allowed to decide whether to carry out orders on a Wednesday or a Thursday but that will be about it.

Benson Dope was not afforded the Royal Touch a few months ago over his lying like a flatfish - again. He is obviously not only duplicitous but also thick. He failed to take the hint that he was very smelly and had to go and announce he was standing again for Dunedin South. Presumably he got a couple of phone calls from the ninth floor and still refused to back down. Dear Leader gets fed up with all this and tells the President of the EPMU to find a staunch unionist to put his hat in the ring for the Labour nomination. As Labour couldn't lose Dunedin South even if it tried that now means the bloke in the hard hat from the building site we saw on the News last night is effectively now an MP. Swap the smoko room for Bellamies - they'll have to put up a 'No muddy boots' sign at the entrance. And why is all this happening? Because that bloody woman says so.

There is short (mercifully) piece on the opinion page of the Herald this morning that is a classic of the modern New Zealand Wowser genre. A bloke is giving Guy Fawkes day a real pasting. I didn't know you could type whilst wringing your hands. Why should we allow spotty 'yoofs' (his daft spelling ,not mine) to buy fireworks when we don't allow them to buy firearms in Woolworths. Eh? Woolworths don't sell firearms do they? Or have I been missing the Kalashnikovs hiding away behind the yogurt? Life is always better through the rose tinted retrospectoscope but 'Penny for the Guy' and a handful of tupenny bangers in South London in the late 1950's was way better than this surely? I was eight or nine years old, allowed to buy fireworks, enjoyed the hell out of them, didn't die, didn't maim any one and the cat forgave me.

Fireworks should be banned (except by councils who have the necessary permits), anything that is a bit of fun should be banned. It scares domestic animals - well idiots like you scare me.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


One of my pet peeves is State enforced safety. The bloody government telling us we have to be safe. Hard hat regulations in the middle of a field, fluoro safety jackets for the crowd stewards at the cricket. We even have a complete government department to look after us in this regard - OSH.

My beef is not really with OSH or its foot soldiers - especially the foot soldiers. I feel sorry for the sort of being who becomes what my father used to call a 'three pound ten a week man'. They are attired, depending on their particular function, either in a brown dustcoat with a clip board (pencil behind ear) or a cheap suit (a bowler hat is a desirable accessory) or a white coat or a uniform with inordinately decorative badges with pseudo-heraldic pretensions. Nowadays they all have those bloody ID cards in a plastic holder on a piece of ribbon hung around their necks. The Jobsworths of the world. I've long held an attitude of a mixture of scorn and pity for these sorts. OSH is but another department where they can find employment when they tire of the Council, the LTA, the MSA, the library, the Parks Department, the Cracks in the Pavement Department (Compliance Division) etc. No its not Jobsworth's fault. Thes people are delighted to retreat into the safety blankets of their compendium of 'Rules and Regulations'. They are encouraged to have no initiative what so ever and it is, therefore, very easy to enforce the regulations to often absurd lengths. Here is one of the problems - trying to apply 'all or nothing' solutions to situations that can never be solved in that way. You have to wear safety harnesses that would not look out of place on the South Col to stand on a chair to change a light bulb. 1m high or 60 stories, scaffolding is scaffolding, rules is rules, black and white. The Jobsworth can go no further and the whole thing would fall to bits if he could.

No, it's our fault. We are seemingly happy to have in place the structures that allow Mr J to do his work. No one (not even me) would argue that being a bit more safe sometimes is a reasonably good idea. Some one has mentioned commonsense some where. To that I would add trust, reasonableness, responsibility for your own actions and, most importantly, an acceptance of uncertainty.

Everything that happens to anything that lives - blade of grass, elephant, Mrs Smith at No25, me - happens according to the rules of normal distribution. It is likely that most people will be between 5'8''and 5'11' tall. But there will be a few short arses (me) and a few basketball shoe ins. Very occasionally there will be people who are 7 feet tall. Do we then make all door lintels 7'6" on the off chance that Shaq will pop round for a cuppa? Of course we don't. It is vanishingly unlikely (but not impossible) that a NBA star will be in Milford for a cup of Earl Grey and a chocolate afghan and I consequently don't alter my house. If I do get the visit then Mr O'Neill will have to bow his head to get into Obald Towers. That is the way it should be.

With OSH, and many of the other mushrooming Jobsworth employers, we have got this all backwards and as a Society seem quite happy about it. We are happy to let our legislators frame regulations (which regulate) to drown the very probable in the quest to encompass the vanishingly unlikely. We are trying to fit things that have to happen under the normal distribution curve under a square wave. We are unable to accept uncertainty and try and legislate for any eventuality, however unlikely that may be.

As an aside, we only refuse to accept uncertainty when it suits us (well you not me). Competitive sport, one of the things that makes life worthwhile, would be worthless if the outcome was certain.

So, I hate smoking as much as I hate mandatory smoke free public places. Smoke if you want to and I won't go there. I would not dream of driving not wearing a seat belt because it is a sensible way of reducing my chances of dying in a road crash not because someone tells me to. I am supposed to wear I thyroid protector when working with xrays as thyroid exposure to xrays increases the risk of my getting thyroid cancer - which is an uncommon tumour in men in their fifties - a bit. I don't wear one because they are uncomfortable. If I get thyroid cancer - so be it. I know the risk and have decide to take it. I won't sue anyone, I won't expect excessive sympathy and I also won't expect 'I told you so'

So back to the beginning. OSH - sod off.

Killing your first marlin

The famous 'first fish'.

I first visited the Bay of Islands in 1977 on the way back home to the UK after having spent in two years in Papua New Guinea where I first got bitten by the gamefish bug. I had a copy of Goadby's 'Big Fish and Blue Water' which I had read a squillion times. It was my bible and I taught myself what little I knew from it. Going to the Bay was like a Muslim going to Mecca. I arrived in July and was a little nasally dislocated to find out that there were no marlin within a 1000 miles of Russell in July - I thought you tripped over them going to the dairy all year round. No matter, I chartered a boat for a day and went livebaiting for something called a kingfish, listened to a rugby test on the radio (which I thought was a very bizarre thing to do) and caught nothing. I came back and spent a couple of hours in the Swordy Clubrooms in Russell (don't think there were Paihia ones then) absolutely gobsmacked at what I was in the middle of. One day, one day I would be back standing by a blackboard with the light blue surround, a smile as wide as a mile on my face with a dead marlin at my side.

Fast forward twenty two years. I was determined to do this by myself. I was going to catch a marlin from my boat, by my native cunning (or lack thereof). I'm into my fourth season of trying and nix. I'm trolling off Red Head and we get a strike (had those before) but after a short while it is obvious that I have actually hooked a marlin. Now this is the real deal, it is jumping and tail walking and it is seemingly well attached to my line. Where is Tudor Collins when you need him? We fight it from a book and after about 50 minutes we have it at the side of the boat. It is quite quiet but no where near in the terminal stages of anything and I have the flying gaff ready. I am about to pull a marlin into my boat and the light blue edged blackboard of my youth is only forty minutes away. Couldn't do it. Couldn't see the point - then or now. I realised at that moment in time why I wanted to catch a marlin and it had all already happened. I told Paul to put the gaff away, reached over the side, grabbed the bill without gloves (told you it was the first one), took the hook out and felt the feeling I still feel as it swam away.

Perhaps this may explain a bit why I am so against what appears to be happening around our coast at the moment. It just does not fit, in any way shape or form, into the big picture of why I go game fishing. I try and see things from the perspective of the 'kill and grill' brigade, but I can't. That doesn't mean they are wrong, of course, - I just can't see it. I can't even see the 'first fish' thing.

( Written in February 2005)

Friday, October 26, 2007


I am often caught reflecting on the huge differences between the two places I have lived in over the past twenty five years, Singapore and The Peoples Republic of Aoteoroa. Populations much the same, Singapore with a land area that could easily be swallowed up by Lake Taupo and not much else the same. Food in Singapore is the best in the world, food here very patchy unless you want to spend an arm and a leg or go to a restaurant run by South East Asians.

National approach to life? You couldn't ask for a greater difference. The Singapore pragmatic, business orientated way of running the country like a corporation and the good of the whole outweighs the rights of the individual. NZ the complete opposite. Ideology to the fore with individual bloody 'rights' paramount over everything. Theoretical ideals hold sway over the practical business of running a viable small country in the real world. Equality and respect are the sacred cows that cannot be touched. The vocal minority hold sway over the silent majority. The answer to any hard question that crops up here is to have a an enquiry involving all stakeholders. This goes on for an undefined period of time (the default unit of measurement is blocks of nine months) and it is hoped that when the report is delivered (this can be delivered in a flax basket to make it more acceptable to more stakeholders) the problem has gone away. If it has not then a second phase enquiry is ordered and we start all over again.

I lived in Singapore when in 1983 it was announced that the MRT (Mass Rapid Transit - underground railway) was to be built. The first passenger was carried in 1987. By contrast Auckland's transport woes are addressed with time lines measured in decades. The four years to build the first bit of the MRT would be taken up with arranging the RMA hearings - not having them but arranging them. We need a second harbour crossing and there might be one in twenty years time. We are destined to be left behind in the real world as this strupid approach pervades everything we do. We need a benign (or not) dictator of my choosing to run this country.

Where does the A380 fit into all this? The first one to fly commercially landed in Sydney yesterday in, surprise surprise, the Singapore Airlines livery. New Zealand is current thinking about extending the runway at Auckland so it might land here at some time in the future.


Thursday, October 25, 2007

Biffo in the House

Mallard showed himself to be the sort of scrote we all knew he was yesterday. When Henare started taunting Bovver Boy about his knee tremblers behind the caucus bike sheds he didn't like it up him Mr Mannering. Mallard is an uncouth lout, has been for ever and always will be. Hypocrite only scratches the surface of the deficiencies of character this idiot displays. Apparently he hit Tau Henare. Had it been the other way around it would have been much more amusing - I would have Tau on my team in front of Pond Scum any day. Mallard has been riding for this ever since he had a go at Don Brash last year - had he asked Don to step outside, Brash would probably have thought he wanted to look at some rather racy spreadsheets - and it really couldn't happen to a nicer bloke. It is a disgrace that someone of the moral fibre of Mallard is in Parliament let alone Government.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


Granny has not so much died but moved on to a better place.

When I wrote the first piece almost eighteen months ago I never envisaged it growing to be a regular contribution. I came to love doing it but latterly she has started to become a bit of a millstone – I’ve felt I have to come up with something most days. It is also becoming boring. You can only say Keith Locke is a pratt in a finite number of ways. You can only say climate change has nothing to do with V8 motor cars once every three months or so. Granny has become a one trick pony - and they are boring.

For a few weeks I’ve wanted to expand what I do in the Granny thread. I’ve found I really enjoy writing but the old lady in her current format was becoming very stifling. The most fun I’ve had from her was the ‘Granny on Tour’ a few months back. I do this for my enjoyment and I was tiring of it.

You may have seen my plugs for the ‘El Gringo’ thread on the Hull Truth. A few weeks back he decided to move his writings and pictures to a blog and I have convinced myself that is what I want to do. It will give me more scope to do what I want and not be constrained by the confines of just commenting on a second rate newspaper.

So I am in the process of moving all the Granny stuff to the new place. I can also put some of the other scribblings scattered over on there and everything will be neat and tidy. Some one kindly suggested I should collect the Granny stuff together and this will be an attempt to do this.

I can also discuss things that didn’t fit into the ‘Granny’ remit. Big changes are afoot in the obald life and I would like to document those in both word and pictures. I can also discuss Enkis without having to look over my shoulder to make sure I am not breaking spam rules.

If anyone is remotely interested I’ll post the link to the blog, to be called ‘obald@home’ on this thread when it is fit to look at – couple of days maybe

A passing


03/07/06 - 23/10/07
After a short illness. Mourned by no one.
No flowers by request.
All Donations to the Obald Henriques 30 Fund.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007


Dear Leader is used to getting her own way and she is currently having raspberries blown at her from all sorts of quarters. Yum Yum - couldn't happen to a nicer bloke. As alluded to above, Banksie is wasting no time in having a go at her and is adding spice by doing it through her favourite poodle, Tizard. I wouldn't imagine that Judith has John on her Xmas card list but she really is so inept in everything she does and says that it is not really fair putting her up aginst Banks. Her attempts to have a go at him are just plain pathetic. He could eat her for breakfast and is currently doing so - all covered in Marmite. Uncle Helen is told to get nicked at home so what does she do? She does what she always seems todo when the pitch starts to take a bit of spin she buggers off overseas. Remember that foreign policy is one of her strong suits (spare me) and she can strut her stuff on the international stage showing how well the Peoples Republic can punch well above its weight on the international scene (am I really typing this bollocks?).

Remember how she was pontificating about how Frank Bananarama was going to be regarded as the leper of the South Seas at this conference currently underway? Frankie was going to be hanging around in Tonga with no one to talk to, recall that? Well the head of the Commonwealth, Don McKinnon (just remind me of his nationality) has a) invited Frankie to dinner and b) had his entrance to the chinwag announced on the PA when Dear Leader's entrance was ignored. Terrific stuff. In true diplomatic fashion Frank turned down the groceries because he was busy holding talks with people - these are the same people who Helen said would ignore him. Helen didn't go to the nosh because she was having a hissy fit.

Long may this trend of people treating our Dear Leader as the ideological bigot and inconsequential waste of space that she really is continue. Her days of doing as she pleases surrounded by sycophantic lickspittles are hopefully coming to an end. Hideous, hideous woman.

There is a chilling breakdown of the respective income tax structures both here and across the Tasman in the Herald this morning. I know Income Tax cannot be looked at in isolation but it is not pretty reading. Even before Howard's clutching at straws promises of Monday the figures confirm what we have all known for years. History Boy is shafting us with knobs on and oak leaf clusters. We compare awfully every way you look at it. The rates are higher, much higher, at every income level and the levels at which the ghastly rates kick in are also way lower over here. It wouldn't be quite so bad (well it would but try and look on the bright side) if he spent the money on something worthwhile.

Like Eden Park, eh John?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Homegrown terror?

What the hell is going on in the Uraweras? Well how would you know. This is all more bizarre than a bizzare thing. There would appear to be an alliance between Tama bin Laden and Te Qaeda and the Totora Liberation Front if some of the reports are to be believed. Depending on who you get your information from this was either a nature ramble or sorting the stockpiles of napalm and AK47s. The truth, as always, is almost certainly somewhere in between. But how is anybody supposed to take anything with Tama Iti in the midst of it seriously? Who thinks that this tattooed idiot and fifteen of his mates could organise a nun shoot in a convent let alone cause nationwide mayhem. They couldn't take over a corner dairy far less a country.

The reaction to the AOS crawling all over the Eastern Bay of Plenty is predictable enough. How could they be so culturally insensitve as to set up road blocks on the same lines as the site of land confiscation in, wait for it, the 1860's? How could they search for automatic weapons and incendiary bombs in the full view of school buses? Of course there are truck loads of rocket launchers in the area because the local people often go into the native forest to hunt for food. I suppose they also pop down to the Four Square or Liquor King in the family Apache helicopter or A10 Warthog. And of course this sort of kerfuffle wouldn't be complete without Keith Locke sticking his beak in. He has said something but I didn't listen to what it was because it would be the same crap he always talks and it is meaningless.
Howard Broad has staked his reputation (I wasn't aware he had one) on all this storm in a teacup stuff. There will be a lot of bluster for, ooh let's see - 72 hours, charges will be laid under legislation no one has ever heard of, all involved will get legal aid and in about eighteen months time a few bus tickets will get wet. Who cares?
Banksie wants to go over the Eden Park upgrading business again. Please spare us all this. He says, quite reasonably, if Pond Scum was prepared to stump up $1 billion for a waterfront jobby why can't he (PS) raid History Boy's obscenely obese piggy bank for a paltry $50 mill. It is reckoned that the GST take alone from the 2011 World Cup will be in excess of $200 mill so the numbers don't seem too hard. Whatever the outcome of round twenty seven of this seemingly endless saga (and Banksie is not known for giving up on things) the impression we will be giving the rest of the world is that we couldn't find our way out of a paper bag.
We have recently displaced Greg Norman as the chokers of all time and adding this new accolade is hardly a good look is it?

Friday, October 12, 2007


When will it end? The madness that is. The paper is full of it this morning.
Starting with the most trivial, Granny tried to get pricelists from London hostelries to try and work out the mechanics of the largeish bar tab. This request was declined for Health and Safety reasosns. Eh?
We move onto stab proof vests. Plod reckoned he would save a bit of dosh by measuring the boys in blue up for these in house as opposed to letting the manufacturer do it. He stuffs up - I mean how hard is reading a tape measure? - and we are in the cart to the tune of $2.7mill. There are about 6500 policemen in New Zealand that means it cost $415 to run the tape measure over the gut of a fed. I want the contract.
The real madness winner this morning however comes from a more familiar source - bloody climate change. How to win friends and influence people - especially the Kiwi bloke. Outlaw the beer fridge and large flatscreen TVs. This is what Botox & Tooth Whitening Woman and the rest of the loonies have said will happen so that we can save the vast sum of $64million dollars. That piffling amount wouldn't keep Dougie in Krug for a week. For crying out loud stop this bloody nonsense. If these dements really think keeping 60 inch TVs out of the country is going to save anything let alone the planet then they are madder than even I thought they were.
There is a faint glimmer of hope on the horizon. A Judge in the UK has decreed that if schools are to show Al Gore's fantasy film it must be preceeded by a health warning from sensible people (like me) who now have the unfortunate apellation of 'climate deniers' This judgemnt cost the plaintiff $600,000 in legal fees. That is decades of plasma screens.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

$8.7 billion

here is a picture doing the rounds of History Teacher Boy in the house yesterday. It is taken just after he has announced his obscene $8.7 billioin surplus. He is sitting there in the comfy green chair with the most nauseating of his smug, arrogant simian grins plastered to his face and is holding up four fingers. What do these fingers represent? Four percent cut in income tax for all comers? Four percent cut in company tax? Forty thousand dollars as the level the upper tax bracket will be raised? No bloody way. They represent a fourth term. That is all the little toad sees in this great pile of your and my money - a way of buying a fourth term for this odious reugnant administration. The look on his weasely little face, the malevolent lustful glare from those slit like gimlets of eyes, the smugness of a dictator about to hand out lollies to the proles - God it makes you (well me anyway) sick.
Bill English this morning predicts a session of lollynomics for the time from now to the election. You can pick it like a nose can't you. Dear Leader (as if we haven't got enough nausea on our plates this morning) then chimes in with all the 'sensible stewardship of a robust economy' BS and 'we have yet to decide how New Zealanders may benefit from our mastery of economics' crap. They are talking about giving back bits of the money they nicked off us in the first place. Everything about their tax policy is duplicitous and just plain wrong. The top rate of tax kicks in at $60,000 dollars. When I first came to the Peoples Republic I seriously thought this was a misprint. Bloody Labour assured us that this would only affect 5% of the countrys wage earners. Now $60,000 per annum hardly puts you in the queue for your own Gulfstream but this 'top earner' tax bracket now is reached by 14% of the proles - nearly one in six.
No one likes paying taxes much but I wouldn't mind so much if it were spent on good stuff - roads, high explosives for men in camo suits to chuck around the place, fighters - even hospitals. Starship is a paltry $4 mill short of some target or another and where does 25% of the shortfall come from? Cullen's wheelbarrowful of banknotes? No. Tiger's caddy stumps up with the folding varieties.
Cullen and Dear Leader are much more intent on spending our money on supporting a world wide (no less) abolition of the death penalty. Not content with passing legislation that the majority of her own country don't want (was it 80 or 85% that were against Bradford's smackng nonsense) she now want's to stick her beak into other peoples business. Apparently 65% of Septics want to keep the unfriendly injections and Ole' Sparky. Their business not mine - or the Dear Leader's. I'm sure Helen's displeaseure over the use of bullets and bits of rope is really concerning the leaders of Iran, China, Singapore etc. etc.
Speaking of China and hypocrisy - we have mentioned Dear Leader - what is with her totally lily livered stance on Taiwan. She wants a free trade deal with China. She wants it so much that she ignores China's use of the death penalty but refuses to support Taiwan (a democratic nation of a mere 23 million) in it's bid for global recognition because the PRC insist that anyone who deals with them say Taiwan are a bunch of ratbags.
And then there's increasing the tax on non biofuel petrol but no time.

Monday, October 8, 2007


I like my murdering. I was brought up on a diet of Sherlock Holmes and Agatha Christie. The latter wrote about seventy murder whodunnits and the library in Wewak, Papua New Guinea had all but a handful of them and I re read them between ploughing the fields and catching lots of spanish mackerel when I lived there in the mid seventies. I still reckon the Sherlock Holmes collection contains some of the best constructed plots written - Arthur Conan Doyle was a doctor of course so maybe I'm biased.

Midsomer Murders is my kind of comfy English middle class rural intrigue with the occasional lashing out of a bale hook thrown in to keep you interested. Being a cheapskate sort of a bloke I only have one Sky decoder in the house and it has become normal practice of a Saturday evening to switch over to the murdering halfway through the second half of the rugby. Imagine my horror last week when DCI Barnaby had been replaced by a program called 'Wire in the Blood'. I am yet to work out what the title is about but, assured by my wife that it was good, I watched. Gruesome this program most certainly is. You don't get murdered on this show by having an overdose slipped into your coffee. A bit of torture and then blood on the ceiling is your lot if you get selected for this one. The main thrust of the program however is the workings of a psychologist as he outwits plod and points to the killer by just having a think.

Is there a point to all this lengthy preamble? Yes there is. I out thought the psychologist on Saturday night by an hour and knew that the female police inspector was the murderer by proxy as we went into the third ad break. I am therefore ideally equipped to tell you why my next door neighbour's plane ticket to Paris for this afternoon is not looking the item of envy it did but twenty four hours ago. I am the psychological expert you need to lead you to understanding why the ABs are coming home. The Herald is full of All Black doom and gloom this morning making the Monday paper even more unreadable than usual. The ersatz Society Page is still there as are the stupid green pages - this week it's what cars 'prominent' (in their eyes, not mine) people drive.

But in there somewhere is one person who puts their finger on what came to me as I drove back from the golf club yesterday. It is the government's fault. Forget the ref (please) you don't lose to an inferior side (and that the French were) just because of two piss poor decisions (and that they were). If we were already twenty points in front, who would have given a toss. The debacle in Cardiff is the result of years of left wing, politically correct safety at all cost education and thinking.
It seems to be generally accepted that we had the best thirty players and yet they lost - again. Chokers? Of course they are. They can't handle pressure because all their lives they have been shielded from it. The ABs ran onto the pitch yesterday to not lose. They didn't run on to win because that would involve risk. All those endless and pointless pick and goes. They are a riskless way of spending thirty seconds. They don't achieve very much other than reducing the risk of losing the ball. But in a negative sort of a way they are safe. You usually don't lose much from them.

I firmly belive that this country will never win anything in a pressure situation that involves doing what the real winners do - take risks - because it is ingrained into us that is not what you do. We are an OSH driven society and that is reflected in what happened yesterday. They were not prepared to win but focussed on not losing.
Stand on the tee with a lake running down the left side of the fairway and the surest way of getting your ball in the drink is to say to yourself 'There is that big lake on the left, I must not hit it in there'. Splash - every time a coconut. 'Look at the width of the fairway 200m off the tee'. Straight down the middle.
'We must not lose to France.' Plane on Wednesday. 'The best way to score tries against this mob is to spread the ball wide because we are good at that.' Smash England next weekend. 'If we spread the ball wide we might drop a pass or suffer an intercept. Safer to pick and go even though they have defended that without problem for the last hour' Plane on Wednesday.

This is a very very difficult mindset to get out of once it has been ingrained from primary school age. Anton Oliver said during an interview last night (when he wasn't being beeped out). 'We said all week that we mustn't do things we had been guilty of all tournament and still we did them'

As I said it's all the fault of the left and of course it is in particular Helen Clark's fault.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Rebuilding volcanoes?

Why does a so called advanced society waste food on someone like Rudman? I am astonished that eighteen months or so ago I actually used to read him. I gave the Herald just the cursory glance it merits on a Monday and my eye was drawn to his column courtesy of a 1870's lithograph or drawing or something. It was used to illustrate Rudman's current waffle and showed the Three Kings (not the gamefishing ones) as they were. The picture is a straightforward explanation as to why that area of Auckland is thus called - three volcanic cones in close proximity.
There is now only one left as man over the last one hundred and fifty years or so has quarried away two of them. He did this to advance his lot; construct buildings, use as infill prior to building roads - that sort of thing. The kind of stuff that people do as they become civilised and no longer live under fallen logs and live by eating wetas and earthworms. Looney boy Rudman is now all for rebuilding them. Got that? He wants to rebuild not one volcano but two. Have you ever seen any thing so daft in all your life? I think it might have been done in Las Vegas to turn a profit but to have someone actually suggest that it might be a good idea for 'heritage' reasons is barking even for this asylum.

The scary thing is that there are other people apart from Rudman who might think this is a good idea. Winstone Aggregates apparently are looking at something similar. Now presumably they haven't moved on from one bloke with a shovel and a wheelbarrow to nice big yellow earthmovers by playing the goat in a business sense and I can only assume some of Rudman's mates have got in their ears and shamed them into such weird thinking. Or they can see that by appearing 'environmentally sound and heritage responsible' they can increase their profits.
Can this country please be crop-dusted with a large dose of pragmatism. Where does all this stupid looking back wistfully over the mists of time come from? People wishing they were still hoisting flags on Tiri to tell Auckland what sort of ship was imminently arriving in the port - from under which stone did they crawl?. You can't turn the clocks back. Kings number two and three are now part of the pavement somewhere and that's just the way it is. Move on.

But this lust for the good old days is always selective and it never ceases to amaze me. These clowns never say 'I wish I was living in the 1870s' they just want the warm fuzzy bits. In general the past wasn't as rosy as the Rudman's view of the world would have you believe. It was a lot simpler, sure, but who would willingly go back the life expectancy that was prevelant when there were still Three Kings? Who would give up his V8 for a horse or his iPod for a pianola? Which of them would welcome endemic rheumatic fever with open arms, wax his moustaches every morning, wear spats or bathe in a tin bath in front of the fire?

Rebuild a volcanic cone, give me a break. Besides all of the above, a real builder of volcanic cones showed us how it was done and how futile our farting around with it would be last Tuesday night.