Young woman: 'Yuck - Mum! What's that on your leg?'
Mother (imitating Eeyore). 'They're my varicose veins'.
Her daughter says she must fix it by going to the XYZ vein clinic.
Some time later we tune into another commercial station to hear two young women talking. One of them has just joined a gym to lose weight and has this to say:
'so I joined a gym - not a pretty one, a grungy one with senior citizens…".
Ageism is alive and well with copywriters because not only are they like their entire industry, image-obsessed but because most are in their 20s. If you've come across any similarly ageist advertising recently do let us know at:
Louts, layabouts and vagrants. It's as ifAuckland City Councillor Paul Goldsmith has just discovered them.It was hard to tell which he disliked more - the sightof homeless blighting Auckland's fair (ho ho) streets or the pools of urine he constantly referred to.It's been the Season of the Big Wet, Paul. Could it be that this was just rain?
Anyway,as usual history is a great teacher and it says this:For decades, long beforeGoldsmith was born,train stations 'often attracted loafers and drunks, bored teenagers or lonely souls seeking human contact. Some of these people became local identities, such as the enigmatic Catherine Hill who frequented Frankton station for decades from the Second World War. Locals dubbed her ‘Coffee and Bun’ after her usual purchases from the station refreshment room, and they speculated that she was waiting for a fiancé who had never returned from the war.
In the early 1900s late-night drunkenness and fighting at city stations was typically blamed on ‘the rough element’ and gangs of ‘young ruffians’. In the aftermath of the First World War, there were complaints of men ‘loitering’ and drinking around station lavatories, with returned soldiers reportedly ‘frequent offenders’.
Stations were also easy targets for graffiti and vandalism. Toilets and advertising signs suffered the most damage. Some suburban stations were popular night-time gathering places for local youth. At Opawa in Christchurch in the early 20th century, youthful ‘hooligans’ scratched obscene words in the walls, tore down posters and notices, stole light bulbs, urinated on the floor, set rubbish on fire and broke windows'.Source: NewZealand History on-line.
It illustrates that the poor, the bored and the sadly homeless have always been with us, but perhaps once we showed morecompassion.
Ah, the pleasures of old box files… from one came this startling news about adult literacy:A 1989 survey showed that only 62% of Canadians met most everyday reading requirements. And if that's not bad enough, the German Commission for UNESCO estimated that there were between 500,000 to three million illiterates in the country.New Zealand didn't get a mention, but we're not doing too badly according to the Government's Education Counts survey.
From 1996 to 2006 the proportion of the adult population of New Zealand with very low literacy skills reduced substantially, but a proportion with low literacy kills persists.Similar changes have occurred in Canada, the USA and Australia.In New Zealand the improvement in document literacy skill has been more pronounced than in those countries, according to the report.