Tuesday, July 31, 2007


To my now ex-workmates (sadly not all in this photo), who made the place worth working at.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Hash broooons

Back from a glorious road trip. Still disseminating and contemplating, including a definitive assessment of the correct pronounciation of "Hash Browns" and its usefulness as a dialectical tool for determining a speakers origin.

While I do that, in the meantime to entertain you, WellingtonGrey ponders a global pirates vs ninjas battle for world domination

Or if that link fails, try 'Laughing 2' on my links list.

'Laughing 1' is also well worth investigating.

Thursday, July 26, 2007


Listening to: One of my comps. Right now it is 'Watching the wheels' by John Lennon

Last day at work tomorrow.

I don't mean to keep harping on about it but I have been there most of my working life, all of my professional life, and nearly a quarter of my actual life; 7 years is not an insignificant period. I'll miss my co-workers, a really good bunch of people.

My in-tray and locker have been cleared, my exit interview arranged, and farewell afternoon tea lined up.

Then after the day is done, pack the car and head up to Ohakune for the weekend, pausing immediately prior to departure for a birthday dinner at my folks (Happy Birthdays Nora and Molly!).

Leave a job, then leave town.

Hard to think of a better way to make a clean break.

Monday, July 23, 2007


Listening to: Back to Basics-Billy Bragg

Yup more of my photo's.

Abandoned places and things fascinate me. They all have stories to tell. Once they were someones pride and joy, once they were new, once they were alive.

Now they are just artifacts.
Just east of Palmy.
A photo of a photo. West of Palmy, I have been watching this place slowly collapse for years now.
Somewhere south of Te Kuiti.
Somewhere between Dunedin and Gore.
South of Napier.
This cut down Triumph has been parked in a field south of Napier for about a decade. It has been home-converted into a ute; they never came out of the factory looking like that. Someone had a lot of fun with it I suspect.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

No more lonely nights

I have worked my last twilight shift at SP.


Feel somewhat liberated.

Appropriately for my final shift fling, I finished at about 2am this morning. Wouldn't be shift if I didn't stay 'til some mind bending hour of the morning.

I think my workplace has sensed my imminent departure and isn't happy about it. Here is my left thumb after Thursday nights adventures:

I bashed it in three different places on three different things. What are the odds?

Matt if you're reading this and you really think it's worth your while I'll write up the incident forms on Monday. They are the result of clumsiness rather than DO issues!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Reflective imagery

Listening to: the radio

I attended the funeral of the father of one of my older friends yesterday. Saw a bunch of people I hadn't seen for a while. Noted how much had changed, not only in the people, but in the church we spent so much time in, and the immediate neighbourhood.

It brought to mind the lyrics of an old Bruce Springsteen song, 'Thunder Road'.

Don't run back inside
Darling you know what I'm here for
So you're scared and you're thinking
That maybe we ain't that young anymore


I'm now going to indulge in my regular penchant for posting photos I have taken. Appropriately after such pensiveness, most of them feature reflection.

The fountain on Marine Parade, Napier, November 2006
Yachts moored at lake Te Anau, March 2007
Yacht at Whakatane, January 2006
The lake Manapouri power station tunnel, March 2007
The Australian bushfires last summer made for some dramatic sunsets. The picture doesn't really convey the redness of the sky caused by all the smoke. Petone Beach, November 2006
No reflections but nice anyway. Symbolic waka paddle sculpture, Petone Beach, November 2006.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

A Snickers bar and a bottle of Powerade

Breakfast of champions.

After last nights revelries I really ought to be more hungover than I am, which isn't very.

Not complaining though.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Someday I'll tell you all about it

Listening to: Mer de Noms: A Perfect Circle

But not today.

I reserve the right to be completely cryptic at times.

Feeling somewhat temporally dislocated at the moment. My body clock is convinced it is Thursday. Which leads us neatly to KiwiLauren, who arrives in a couple of days, since from her perspective, I am in the future anyway.

I thought I would steal a good idea that Morgue had and ask for suggestions from You, yes you, on interesting and illuminating things to see and do during the four months our canadian is here.

I have a few ideas, but I want to know what I haven't thought of.


Pearl Jam album by album

A random question from Jono on Saturday Night prompted some thought.

"What is your favourite Pearl Jam song?"
Note/disclaimer. A lot of people don't like Pearl Jam, and thats fine. I do however, so deal with it, and don't leave trollish comments about how much you think they suck.

The answer that immediately came to mind was 'Sleight of Hand' from 2000's 'Binaural'. I like the sparse echoy sound of the verse compared to the full noise chorus, and I can relate to the lyrics, about how your life can pass you by if you're not watching, and few of us end up where we plan to be.

I began thinking about a top five, and quickly realised that most of my favourites were not album tracks (eg 'State of Love and Trust', 'Wash', 'I got Id', 'Alone', 'Footsteps'), or even singles.

So instead of being obscure, I thought I'd relate my favourite tracks from each album.

'Porch'. I just like the intensity of the track. It has all the energy of a young band with things to say. I prefer early U2 for the same reason. There is an energy there that gets refocused as bands mature.

'Rearview mirror'. This album is totally summer of '93 for me, the first summer I was able to drive, so it got lots of play in my Mum's mini. Long warm summer evenings. 'RVM' is just a cool song about the benefit of hindsight. Hard to pick a single track off such a good album.

'Corduroy', although closely vying with 'Not for you'.

No Code
'Present Tense'. Bit of an epic, but I like how it starts and builds, and the end instrumental is pretty nice too.

'Low light'. Another hot summer night aimlessly driving around song.

Live on two Legs
'F*ckin up'. I think its a Neil Young cover, but it rocks, so is eligible for inclusion.

The previously mentioned 'Sleight of Hand'.

Riot Act
'You Are'. I like its fuzzed out chuggy messiness.

Pearl Jam
'Unemployable'. Again hard to choose off a good album.


Three days off from the world due to the new shift system at work. I spent most of today asleep in some form or another.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Bit nippy up our way this morning.
Our bird bath was turned into a little avian ice rink.
And especially for D3vo, here is the link for the clip we were talking about. If you pause at about 1:00 you can see people ducking and scrambling out of the way.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Who'll stop the rain?

I know it is winter but this is getting silly.

I have lawns to mow and washing to dry dammit!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007


Listening to: Husker Du-Candy Apple Grey

So this week all four of my sports teams have made finals (admittedly one was a 'thanks for turning up' minor final, but a final nonetheless), three indoor netball and one indoor football ("I pity the fool", "SPAHZ", "Suspect" and "O for awesome" respectively).

Too bad I can only play in two of them. Those who saw my sudden exit from Monday night's netball may recall there were indications of a shoulder injury. I iced it at the time, and the beer, while probably not a good idea, certainly had a relaxant effect.

Tuesday morning found the shoulder still sore, but managable even if I had to heavily favour it, but getting in and out of my work coveralls soon moved beyond merely uncomfortable to downright painful. Sensing something was probably more wrong than the bruising I suspected, I improvised a sling from some tube bandaging and suspended my left arm for the rest of the day, feeling somewhat over-reactive and drama-queeny. Still it was more comfortable than not slinging it, and seemed beneficial in not aggravating anything. I spent the day telling people it looked worse than it was, and coming up with increasingly fanciful stories about how I sustained my injury before admitting the truth ("I was pulling a baby from a burning car". "I robbed a bank but one of the guards winged me" etc etc); I accidentally denied landing space to an opposition player by watching the ball and not him, and wound up wearing the player as a result.

I noted that if you wander around work the day after you have publicly announced your resignation with your arm in a sling, you will get a lot of attention.

Feeling much improved today, but wanting a professional opinion, I checked in with the work physiotherapist. After examination, my shoulder was defined as having been slightly sprained when the opposition centre landed on it (damaging either or both the coro-acromial and coro-humeral ligaments). Moreover, the sling was deemed to be not over-cautious, but in fact a jolly good idea, likely contributing to the feeling much better today than yesterday.

Thats a new one. So far in my sporting career I have sprained ankles, fingers, thumbs and hands (I'm counting falling off a trampoline at a party as 'sport' for this).

I missed last nights football final as a caution, and the physio grounded me for until Monday so I miss tomorrows netball final as well (both for work teams).

Well actually she said I could play if I wanted to, but it wouldn't be a good idea, her official recommendation was "No", and casually dropped into the conversation that while mild sprains can clear up in 7-10 days, a ligament or muscle tear can take weeks or months to heal, and indoor netball is a high energy unpredictable sport etc etc, as physios are wont to do. Then she noticed the old-school Transformers T-shirt I was wearing so we talked about transformers for a while.

I'll have to strap it for a week or so when I do play. More shaving.

Incidentally, my work netball team now has three key players out with injury, all centre/attacks, all incurred within 24 hours of each other. One sprained ankle playing indoor netball last night, another ankle sprained playing indoor soccer while I watched, and me.

Should be an interesting game to watch.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

On the band wagon

Listening to: Gramsci-Permanence

Jumping on the bandwagon to rave about how the Transformers movie actually isn't terrible, and is actually good in a big dumb fun escapist way.

But first:

How to tell if you are watching a Michael Bay movie

1. There are only three times of day: Noon, sunset, and night. Twilight does not exist.
2. Actors will utter cheesy terrible dialogue with great seriousness and profundity.
3. If possible, there are helicopters. Often black, with no identifying insignia.
4. There will be at least one or more shots where the screen is dominated by the colour orange (also a feature of Jerry Bruckheimer productions). The sunset comes in handy for this.
5. Any kind of road convoy will be accompanied by very low flying helicopters.
6. Anything that is high-tech (or is perceived to be high-tech) will be made to appear sexy.
7. There will be a freeway chase.
8. There will be a downtown action scene.
9. Any aerial craft will be flying far lower than needed to perform its mission, or performing spectacular but unnecessary manouvres.
10. Irony and subtlety will be missing in action. Along with meaningful character development.
11. There will be a slow motion hero shot.
12. The plot will at times make no sense, but is spectacular nonetheless.
13. Explosions will be large, but enable nearby protagonists to shrug off a light coating of debris and continue.

With these misgivings in mind, I was pleasantly surprised by 'Transformers'. Maybe it is the Dreamworks influence, but I enjoyed it. There was a definite sense of not taking itself too seriously. The script was not too bad, with a lot of humour (at times almost unexpectedly subversive) that really added to it, lowering the cheese ratio; this is a kids movie for grown-ups. And the on screen transformations are really cool. My favourite was the Optimus Prime freeway showdown.

And who doesn't want a car that can look out for you and change into a giant robot? Although I'm not sure you'd want to take it on a date. It would be kinda wierd if you and your date wound up in the backseat of your sentient guardian.

I was a little confused by the helicopter Decepticon. In its original 80's incarnation it was an Autobot.

Also notable from the plane oriented perspective was the big screen debut of a bunch of interesting hardware (in an actually filmed and not CG'd way), most notably the V-22 Osprey (the odd tilt rotor things at the start), and the F-22 Raptor (Starscream, and the friendly lookalikes, currently the hottest jet around anywhere). Likely the last time we will see an F-117 Nighthawk (the original 'Stealth fighter') in a movie as it is on the verge of being retired after 25 odd years in service (making my point about perceived high-tech; it was designed in the seventies).
AirForce One is apparently a Transfomer as well. In the air it is a Boeing 747. On the ground it becomes a 707......right, thats enough geekery.

Clearly the movie had massive US military cooperation, almost like they were looking for some good PR.....

So really Transformers is a quite good movie. However I still want the five hours of my life back that I lost watching Pearl Harbour and The Island.

Speaking of good PR, in an awkwardly segueing way that doesn't quite work, I urge you to check out this youtube link posted by the undulating ungulate.

Outstanding stuff.