The Brexit and all that: A strange feeling for someone as opinionated as I am: I didn’t have a view on the Brexit referendum. My brother and sister, who both live in England, one rich, the other on a modest pension, voted to leave.
Since 2001 JAFAs have quite rightly called it None Tree Hill. Some even grew accustomed to the sight of the shorn iconic cone in their midst. Most people assumed that a tree would be planted soon after the Monterey pine was attacked for the second time in 1999 by Maori activists. Not so. All it took was a mere 15 years of PC tip-toeing over protocols and types of trees.
‘The Super Gold Card recognises the valued contribution our seniors and veterans have made, and continue to make to New Zealand society’. Ahh… warm fuzzies. Makes you feel proud doesn’t it? Included. Accepted. Institutionally respected and acknowledged at the highest levels. Free to roam, off-peak that is.
‘Why you’ll love your AT HOP card…’ says the AT handbook about the change from Gold to HOP card in Auckland. You can simply tag on, helping everyone board faster, and tag off. This speeds up the bus journey too, helping to make the service more punctual….(at a price).
Just after he’d won the last election, John Campbell interviewed Prime Minister John Key who was humbled by the result. He told Campbell that arrogance would not be a characteristic of his government or of his ministers… And at this stage some years down the track, we’re entitled to a little giggle. He might just as well have said that shame would not characterize them either. And he would be right.
(On the map:
red = no paid leave;
orange = < 14 weeks;
yellow = 14-25 weeks;
pale blue = 26-51 weeks;
dark blue 52 + weeks.
Within living memory there were many men and woman who kept secret the ‘shameful’ fact of growing up in an orphanage or similar homes for children who could not, for various reasons, be cared for by parents or extended family. Whatever the reason for their exclusion from society, the inevitable implication was that they were unwanted, by family and community.
There they were – a family straight out of one of those irritating television advertisements. Sitting together on a park bench – handsome dad, attractive mum, two photogenic kids.
When I looked again the kids had gone – playing with wild abandon on the nearby swings and slides, Then something caught my eye.
Some of the artists of the 60’s are revising their hits with new lyrics to accommodate aging baby boomers who can remember doing the “Limbo” as if it were yesterday.
Bobby Darin —
Splish, Splash, I Was Havin’ A Flash
Helen Reddy —
I Am Woman, Hear Me Snore
While it was a shocking incident for those involved, for us, television viewers from afar, the Orlando massacre was not in the least surprising. Not surprising either that American politicians should exploit the tragedy even before victim’s families were informed of their loss.
The other day we trotted off with the other greys, the tinted, the bald and the in-betweens to see the film Shakespeare Live, marking his death 400 years ago.
Like some of the Bard’s plays it grabbed us from the start with Leonard Bernstein’s opening to West Side Story and its compelling choreography, to the close with Prokofiev’s menacing Dance of the Knights from Romeo and Juliet…