31 December, 2008

So long 2008

2008 is all but over.


Many things have happened but for some reason the thing that comes to mind the most at the moment is the price of fuel. Petrol and Diesel that is.

It has gone from record highs to being the cheapest it has been in 3 years.

One has got to wonder why and about the implications of why.

It is all to philosophical for me just now.

There are fireworks to watch.

23 December, 2008

The night before Christmas

It’s the night before Christmas,
The money is spent.
The credit card is maxed,
To hell with the rent.

The children are all confined,
To their beds behind closed doors.
Whispering of treats,
And presents galore.

Meanwhile in the lounge,
The parents madly wrap.
Sellotape this,
And quick label that.

Is there same number of gifts,
For Hannah and Ben?
Hurry and get this finished,
When suddenly, then...

From outside comes,
A stuttering roar.
The screech of tyres,
The slamming of car doors.

Who is this who disturbs,
The domestic unbliss?
The neighbours,
who else?
Santa is a myth.

Charge of the light bridage

Auckland doesn't know how to do Christmas.

New Plymouth has it's festival of lights.
Napier, Taupo and a number of other towns have lights all down the main streets
In Rotorua many of them are up all year.

What does Auckland have?
A few wind battered decorations if we are lucky

Anything flasher is provided by private companies and individuals.

North Shore has a heavily sponsored laser light show in a car park and a trio of parades. The Glenfield one isn't even in December. The Takapuna parade was replaced by a "fiesta"
Auckland can't even provide any policing or traffic control for the crowds visiting Franklin Rd where every house is be decked with lights by the owners and residents.

Whatever else you may think of them, Telecom did a nice job of the tree in Victoria Park.

Bah humbug reins supreme in council circles.

14 December, 2008

They should've gotten a cat instead

A Hastings family were forced to escape their house through a window after two dogs began fighting inside yesterday evening, police said today. more here

Dogs are dumb.
Dogs are destuctive.
Dogs are dangerous.
If you can't get your head around that why would you even consider owning one?

Cats are more intelligent and cheaper to keep.

If you can't handle that may I recommend getting a pet rabbit instead?

12 December, 2008

The PC Brigade vs Father Christmas

The 25-metre statue has been a fixture on the corner of Queen St and Victoria St during the festive season since 1998. In his prime in 1960, he was perched outside the Farmers store on Hobson St, inviting customers inside with a beckoning finger and a friendly wink. But Mr Swny said many people were not so keen on the Queen St Santa, because of his "seedy actions".
"We liked him, but people were saying that the finger ... and the winking eye was a bit seedy."

That's right the PC bridage are concerned about Santa's wink and beckoning finger.

What are they worried about?

That kids might follow the waggling finger and buy a book from the Whitcoulls store he is mounted on?

10 December, 2008

That right hand rule

If you are going straight ahead at an intersection, give way to all vehicles coming straight through from your right.
If you are turning left at an intersection, give way to vehicles coming towards you that are turning right.
If you are turning right at an intersection, give way to vehicles on your right that are turning right.

That is what we have supposed to be doing for the last 30 years.

However I have noticed one situation where nearly everyone breaks the rule.

In theory when turning left at a T junction you are supposed to give way to anyone turning right into the same street unless it is double laned.
In practice nearly everyone checks the rear vision mirror for a car heading up the tail pipe intending to go straight though, and if there is turns left regardless. Not turning blocks up the traffic and the guy waiting to turn right will wait anyway because there is a good chance that car going straight though will pull out and do just that.

If that sounds confusing you should see the traffic mess down near a popular fruit shop in Northcote. Dithering over the right hand rule blocks up the nearby roundabout regularly.

Time to consign this one to the history books and go with the international flow I think.

01 December, 2008

In case of emergancy

John writes: "Had a friend around on the weekend and while fiddling with the paper spike in my study she said they previously used them at the doctors' surgery where she works ... until an OSH inspector informed her they were a work hazard.
Later in the inspection she was asked to show him the office first-aid kit. She opened the door to a room brimming with equipment and every conceivable medical supply. But no ... six doctors, four nurses and this completely stocked room on the premises wasn't good enough for our intrepid (and slightly brainless) inspector - he wanted to see the standard little lunchbox with a couple of sticking plasters, roll of tape and a pair of scissors inside.
He refused to sign off the premises, then fortunately she remembered the emergency response kit they take to accidents and that did the trick.


This situation sounds very funny except that many of us have come across it before.

Take the camps run by the local Girls Brigade company. They always go to the same spot whose hazards don't change but every time the leader has to fill in a hazard assessment. For the girl brigade leasehold on a coast that can only be described as very rocky with no electricity, no flush toilet, no motorised transport or land vehicle access, and very limited cell phone coverage the hazards are not only numerous but include volcanic eruption and tsunami.
The leader also has gotten into trouble for not having an adult with a valid first aid certificate on site. Having a leader who is a registered nurse in her day job isn't good enough. Every girl on site having a parent present however is.

Then there is the requirement at meeting that the toilets and exits not only be pointed out but attendees have to sign a sheet saying so. I have heard the chairperson at more than one meeting identify the exit with the phase "if you can't figure out where you came in heaven help you".

It's like having to sign post an emergency exit in a building with just one door.