Thursday, May 31, 2007


Seems I got flayed somewhere for suggesting KD Lang resembles a young Robert de Niro.

Guys! Watch Salmonberries before you comment.

kennedyflairs k.d. page

RIP Simon Lindsay

Sadly missed

AKA Dodderyoldfart at Rest Area 300m

I posted this earlier hoping you'd comment that reports of your demise have been greatly exaggerated.

Oswald Bastable's Ranting: RIP

But it is true.

Go well. We'll miss you terribly. Our thoughts are with your family & friends.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Can Peter Dunne Dance?

And would we want to see it anyway?

And it's all over for another year, the dreadful music, the dreadful jokes, the dreadful costumes, the dreadful celebs, the dreadful presenters & judges. Goneski.

And worse! Jason Gunn returns to the same timeslot in a couple of weeks. Without me though I'd have to predict.

And Suzanne took the honours. And it seems right. Megan might be a wonderful, natural dancer, but there is something slightly off putting about her. Will Suzanne get her new show & enough dosh to pay the creditors? Time will tell.

Highlight of last night was watching Laws, we gasped a couple of times as disaster loomed, but somehow, he managed not to scone Lauren's head on the floor. Well done. And I never thought I'd say anything like this - but the jive from Cole & Candy took our breath on a couple of occasions too.

All that's left is speculation about next year. Rumour has it that Jeremy Wells, Mark Sainsbury, Tom Scott and Don Brash were approached for the season just ended, I guess we can assume they won't change their minds next year.

We're running out of celebs actually, Nerida says she'll be back as a dancer next year, who will she be paired with?

I haven't investigated foreign Dancing with the Stars series, so I don't know what criteria are employed in choosing contestants there, but here they seem to be:

Sports persons
Shortland St actors
Retired politicians
Retired public service CEOs
TV presenters

Who does that leave us? Peter Dunne? Clark & Cullen probably won't meet the eligibility criteria until after the next election, but with luck, we can then add Winston to the list. Blumsky? He's a media whore, but is he well enough known outside of Welly?

Mikey Havoc? And/or his cute wife Claire? Simon & Ali? (Actually, I'd tune in to watch Alison Mau dance in her smalls).


Ahem... How about Judy Bailey then? I bet they asked her already. Damian Christie? (Mate, we'll put in a decent plug so you can have Hayley), Sean Plunket?

I don't know any Shortland Street actors, but it could be any of them.

Alright, I'm well & truly in waffletown now - I throw te forum open to suggestions. Who would you like to see on next year's Dancing With the Stars?

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Anger at Labour's 'wandering eye'

This is hilarious, mere days after Gordon Copeland's bravado bid for obscurity, his former party leader, Peter Dunne is throwing a tanty because Labour is paying too much attention to the Greens. He's threatened to open negotiations with National. Except he's also thrown a tanty at National for wooing the Maori Party.

This from the guy who cut the Greens out of any coalition at the behest of the Outdoor Recreation Party, who have now abandoned United Future, so why should Dunne care anymore? Aside from his grandiose delusions of relevance.

Mr Dunne wants some recognition from Labour now of United Future's possible relevance after the next election.

Good luck with that Peter it depends on the votes, but I'm hoping that neither Labour, nor National have a bar of you.

Anger at Labour's 'wandering eye' - 29 May 2007 - NZ Herald: New Zealand National news

Hattip to David Farrar who said this of Dunne:

Peter's problem is that in political terms, he is an easy lay.

Now I don't mean this as a bad thing. Peter is a very good guy, who is always a safe and competent Minister, and he doesn't go troppo like Winston does. But it does mean both major parties do tend tio take him for granted

Well I think it's a bad thing & I can see no earthly reason why any party should agree some "deal" with United Future ahead of an election, whatever happens, at a snap of the fingers Dunne would roll over & expose his tummy (or shaft an ally), for anyone.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Time for Linux then?

Anyone else got one of these recently? Looks like such a hassle I am seriously considering going open source immediately. Wonder what happens if I ignore it?

Hi Llew

The purpose of this email is to follow up on the letter your organisation should have received from Microsoft notifying you of the Software Asset Management (SAM) review process.


I tried to contact you by phone today to follow up on the letter your organisation should have received from Microsoft notifying you of the Software Asset Management (SAM) review process. However, I was unable to make contact with you so have taken the liberty of sending you this email to outline the process.

Microsoft has engaged Accordo Group to carry out this activity on their behalf. Please note that Accordo Group is an independent consulting organisation. We do not sell software licenses and our role in this review is purely that of expert advisor on licensing matters.

The steps in the review process are as follows;

Process Steps

1. We ask you to complete the attached deployment summary (spreadsheet format) and return to us via email.

2. Once we receive your deployment summary we will analyse the Microsoft software in use against the licenses held and provide you with an Estimated Ownership Position. There may be areas that require further clarification;

3. When this is done, a finalised License Ownership Position (as of the date of the review) will be provided, detailing what you own and what we understand you are using, based on the information you have supplied. This final summary will detail over-licensing or any apparent variances that may need to be remedied;

4. Along with the final License Ownership Position summary you will also receive a Software Asset Management Tips guide.

In order to make the process as efficient as possible we would highlight the following:

1. You may wish to engage your IT Partner to assist you through (or even manage) the process on your behalf;

2. We recommend that you request from your IT partner/s a list of Microsoft licenses you have purchased via OEM (bundled with hardware) or FPP (boxed retail copies). Please note that records of licenses purchased under a Volume License Program (such as Open, Select or Enterprise) will be already available in the Microsoft records system;

3. Microsoft do make available a free software audit tool called MSIA that might be of assistance in establishing exactly what Microsoft software you have installed on each device. Details on this tool and the location to download it from can be found on the internet as follows:;

4. If you have purchased Volume Licenses under a different company name or have acquired other organisations who may have purchased licenses, please try to have this information available. This will enable us to identify any licenses you own which have been purchased under alternative names.

The documents attached to this email:

• A generic copy of the letter originally sent to your organisation by Microsoft;

• A document that covers some of the frequently asked questions regarding the review process;

• A copy of your organisation’s Volume License Purchase Summary from the Microsoft licensing database;

• A deployment summary that we would appreciate your response to by 14 June 2007. If, for any reason, you are unable to meet this timeframe please contact us by return email.

What you can expect to get out of the review?

• Consolidation of all your licensing records into one concise report which can then be maintained and modified by your organisation in the future;

• Assistance with understanding licensing rules, and, in particular, how they relate to your own specific situation;

• Licensing expertise and advice available to you throughout the process, free of charge;

• Guidance regarding ongoing Software Asset Management.

Please do ask questions if you are not sure about the information you are being asked to provide, or if you have any queries whatsoever in regards to the SAM review process. Alternatively, should you wish to discuss this directly with Microsoft New Zealand’s Small Business Manager, please feel free to contact Jan Ferguson on Ph 09-3625885 or email

Thank you for your assistance.

Kind Regards

An Emissary of the Prince of Darkness.

Sheepless in Otaki

Hurrah! I waved goodbye to 5 sheep yesterday. There were 6 last week, but the ancient girl died during the week. She & her lambs have looked suss since I got them, she's just been past her use by date I think, which is why the guy selling was so keen to get rid of them.

But anyway, I turned up at 10am to pen the the beasts before 10.30am, when a nice lady called Faye was coming to pick them up. Fantastically, Wilma & I had them sorted nearly straight away! And for the only time, Wilma was a help rather than a hindrance. For whatever reason, she went the right way, stopped when I yelled & after only two uncontrolled circuits of the paddock, we had all 5, even the bolshie boys, in my jury rigged "funnel", and on their way to the pen.

We rested then & half an hour later Faye arrived with a high sided trailer.

While getting them in the pen was a doddle, getting them on the trailer was not. Faye backed up to the gate, we bisected the pen to make it smaller, but nothing was going to tempt them to step up & through the gate. Otto spent most of his time blocking the gap.

Resigned to a struggle, I heaved Otto around & pushed the heavy brute up onto the platform. I wondered how long I had to get another before he got back off, but to my complete surprise, George dutifully climbed up onto the trailer to be with his old mate.

"Just like a sheep" Faye noted, as she swung one of the ewes up to join them. I grabbed the last two while she blocked them all in the trailer, she rolled the lot forward while I held corrugated iron up to stop the bolting. And it was done.

The boys are off to Levin apparently, the girls & the wether lamb are staying in Otaki.

Next weekend I'll dismantle all the temporary fencing & transport it to the orchard where it will go to keeping Wilma in.

One amusing thing we noted, the 1/4 acre section next door, from whence springs Zeus the pig, now & then, is now also home to a magnificent chestnut horse. I can only assume they're circus folk or something. Anyway, that's between them & their new neighbours & the animal control guy.

Which brings me to... my utter shame on Saturday, literally seconds after I'd given her a tummy rub out the back, Wilma was returned home from the front street by the local Animal Control Officer. I was stunned "But, but... she was just out the back with me!".

Luckily, the guy just happened to be passing when he caught Wilma just outside our front gate. There was a lot of traffic that day because of some field day at the race course, so the guy didn't even tell me off, just returned her with a smile. And then he asked me if next door's dogs always barked like that & I said not really, just sometimes, and off he went to tell their owner off instead.

Oh, and that prompted me to go see if the sheep guy from next door (not the 1/4 acre section - more like a 4 acre section) had fixed his fence so that his lot can't tour our place when they want.

And he had.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Have Simon & Ali got their State House yet?

Whatever happened to them after they were forced to sell their rundown house in an overpriced suburb?

Anyway, this isn't about them, this is how real people in rundown houses in overpriced suburbs do it.

Pictures would have helped, but I didn't take any.

Our house has the original 1915 bathroom I think. The basin looked like it was from a railway station, or boarding school. The taps did not match even. And the hot tap leaked badly (although, as we have this caliphont arrangement, it wasn't actually leaking hot water, the flow was too slow to trip the caliphont). The basin was badly cracked, but watertight.

Until several years later (Christmas last year) I decided to change the washer to stop the hot tap leaking. It didn't really budge, except I managed to crack the basin even further, so that it leaked onto the floor, and down to the kitchen.

Then, we tolerated that for months, until I had a really bright idea - waterproof the bottom of the basin with Gladwrap (tm). Fucking MacGuyver!

Two months later, we bought a new basin.

Rang our regular plumber - he was on holiday for a month.

Rang him a month later, and several weeks after that (yesterday) he turned up! Yay.

And for the first time in 5 or 6 years, we have a fully functioning bathroom with hot water at the basin, and no water on the floor! And it looks really cool.

And bonus, for some odd reqason, the plumber set our old basin up (sans plumbing) in our front garden, where the neighbours will surely be wondering WTF we're doing putting an ex-railway/boarding school basin in our front garden.

I think I might leave it there for a couple of years.

So progress, progress. One day, after the roof, painting & goodness knows what else, our place will not be a rundown house in an overpriced suburb, it'll just be a house in an overpriced suburb.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

We have a winner

The sheep have been rehomed!

Well, more accurately, they will be rehomed this weekend. Sue, if you're reading this, I meet Faye on Sunday morning & we'll see if we can get those 6 suckers on a trailer & on their way to greener pastures.

I'm glad. I'm also a bit sad to see them go. The place will be lonely.

Then again, I can roll up all the portable fencing that I've used to screen sheep from valuable plants, and to fashion a clever "run" that aids me in penning them when they need it.

That fencing will make the new place 'dog proof" or "sheep proof" depending on whether the animal is coming or going.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Another 2nd hand story

From the same friend of a friend (foaf) as this one.

Possibly about the same fellow! Sounds like the type.

Anyway, a foaf was telling me about a mate of his who was known, in less enlightened days, to have a few too many drinks for the road before he embarked on any sort of trip.

One day, after a few too many, he hitched his boat & trailer up to the back of his car & took off for a weekend's fishing at Taupo.

It was a dreamtrip, no traffic problems, the boat towed like it was hardly there.

Because by the time he'd made his - what is it, 5 or 6 hours from Welly? - journey, and arrived at his destination, he discovered the boat was indeed, no longer on the trailer.

Perplexed, he started to back track, figuring it couldn't be too hard to find a large boat...

Turns out it had come off on State Highway 1, around the Tawa exit (about 10 minutes into his journey), and ended up in on the side of the road. I do not know how he got it back on the trailer when he found it. But I believe it was less than sea worthy.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Best Torch Ever!

Even better than the last Best Torch Ever!

Led Lenser David 15 LED Torch

This is the LED Lenser David 15 Tactical Light. It is smaller than last year's V2 Power Chip (the names just crack me up). It is not quite as bright as the V2, but pretty darned close considering that it is half the size. Oh, and it takes one AA battery. Just one. The V2 takes 3 very non-standard batteries (which are very cheap though).

The mega rubout at the end.

Some days in business are the pits. Clients call demanding instant and possibly unreasonable action, or to complain about something you have no influence over, creditors ring demanding money.

Some days staff tell you a funny story about how stupid some associates are, and neglect to mention that they waited 11 days before reading the email asking to be addressed with some urgency.

Some days you learn that some people who profess to be trusted partners have been ringing clients lambasting them for working with you, instead of them (actually this happens quite a lot & it amazes me that the trusted partners don't realise the client is going to mention it... good faith anyone?).

And then there are those days that remind you of nothing more than the last acts in all of the Godfather films. The mega rubout which in one fell swoop eliminates all foes, traitors, and lazy staff.

Without even trying!

And now you may kiss my ring.

As they say.

As told to me by someone who heard it from...

Funny, yet awful story told to me by someone who heard it from someone else (so it must be true).

Have you ever attended an open home & been tempted to take a huge dump in the pristine bathroom? I confess it's one of those idly amusing thoughts that crosses my mind at the time. I've never enquired, but I presume soiling the bathroom at an open home is frowned upon.

So there's this guy, who owns a block of land in the Wairarapa & he & his wife are considering building a bunch of kitset homes.

So they commenced touring the kitset home manufacturers & showhomes.

Last weekend, they visited some showhomes in the Carterton area. They had a good old poke around & were impressed. The wife engaged the salesman to talk business, the husband pardoned himself for a few minutes to check out the bathrooms.

In fact, he really needed to take a dump, not inspect the plumbing. So that is what he did.

He couldn't have been too experienced at show homes, because everyone knows the plumbing isn't connected. The toilets don't flush.

Mortified, when this became apparent, he closed the lid, closed the bathroom door, located his wife, made theatrical apologies about remembering that the oven was on at home, and fled.

Misleading Headlines - a continuing series.

Do these things get read before they go to print? Or does so much get edited out for space, that any relevance to the headline is removed?

Anyway, "China crocs "escaped twice" before eating child alive."

We can assume that somewhere in China, escaped & marauding crocodiles killed & ate a child right?

Nope. In fact, the boy & two others entered the crocodile enclosure & taunted the reptiles with sticks.

China crocs 'escaped twice' before eating child alive -

Monday, May 14, 2007

Signs that the countryside isn't too far away


Beats mowing I suppose.

Meanwhile, in breaking news, sheep were found at SunnyO.

How odd is that? Well in this instance they weren't our sheep! I looked up after several hours of digging up hydrangeas (sp) and digging in roses... to see 10 little hoofed animals lining our drive in single file, all looking back at me.

When Wilma & I investigated more closely, 9 of them streamed smoothly back through the gap in the fence they came through. The other went the wrong way & took half an hour to reacquaint with his own paddock.

We'd noticed the sheep next door earlier, they're a new thing. I had already noted that the fence was a bit iffy, but whoever owns the sheep had fixed most of that.

I rang him yesterday & let him know that his sheep were exploring - I'm not as bothered about them as I was the pig, there is far less to eat at our place than the sheep have in their property, so they would have been being nosy. The owner will, I'm sure, fix the fence pronto & I have in fact, offered him 6 more... be cool if they moved next door.

In other sheep news, on Saturday mornin g I did the customary headcount, one sheep alone in a paddock with its head down in the corner, the other 5 in the forest. Wilma & I walked the boundaries, changed the water in the trough, and headed back to the house.

Hmm... that sheep still with the head down in the corner... so we swung by for a look.

And what she'd done, and I think she'd been there all night, but not much longer, is get her head through the fence & jammed stuck with wire holding her above & below the neck. Bloody lucky not to be strangled!

It took 10 minutes to free her, she'd kicked up a bit of mud trying to get out, but was none the worse for wear.

Someone told me years ago, that sheep can be defined as "bags of bones, looking for unusual ways to die". And sometimes I know what they mean. But good result this time.

Still looking for homes for them, but I have a few people considering taking them on.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Ashes of Star Trek's Scotty beam down, go missing

Hmm... I assumed his ashes were blasted into space forever! Just shows it pays not assume anything.

Ashes of Star Trek's Scotty beam down, go missing -

Well, well, well.

I'll have to take & post some pictures at some stage soon, but SunnyO is bordered on two sides by a dry creek bed. Previous owners have diligently kept records of correspondence between various agencies & themselves, and through these records I have learned that the last time there was water in the creek was 1994.

Our drinking & washing water comes from a "bore", which I think is just another name for a well. It's quite clever really, the water is 12-15 feet down, we have a pipe with an electric motor sitting on top of it. We turn a tap, the motor pumps water at a very respectable pressure. It's been tested & is premium drinking water. Or, as we say in the business, "potable".

We also have a really big tank which collects rainwater from the roof of the stables. This water is for the plants.

And... there is another motor attached to that tank, which is controlled by a computer, which (if switched on) pumps collected rainwater, at a very respectable pressure, through a very sophisticated irrigation system that is woven around & throughout the property - nozzles rise from ground level like something out of Stingray. We don't need to use this system very often. In fact, the only two times I've tried to use it nothing has happened, or more accurately, very little has happened.

I decided I was doing something wrong.

Then last week, I tried it again. The water seemed to be going through, but no nozzles were magically rising from the ground.

Then a voice rang out from not too far away...

"Hey, we've got a lake!".

And goodness knows what happened, but water was bubbling up from a hole in the ground & forming a very expansive pond. SO I switched the magic system off. Tomorrow, I'll be digging around that hole in the ground & finding, if not fixing, the problem.

This whole bore thing though, has got me thinking. At first, we were really careful about the water we used. But then I realised that we can use as much as we want, aside from what goes down the drain, the water we use outside just immdiately returns to the water table.

So I'm gonna get myself a water feature, powered by a solar pump (only learned you can get these last week). I want something that's big enough for the dog to bathe in, with maybe water bubbling, if not gushing from above. A real well! With potable water! I'll site it in an arid patch where overflowing water will be useful.

No idea if this is feasible at this stage. I will keep you informed of progress.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Rollin' | the wellingtonista

Yahay! In a newspaper somewhere near you. On the same page as scurrilous gossip about Aja Rock & Hadyn Green*.

Rollin' | the wellingtonista

* or was it Tommy Lee?

Arnie laughs at Paris petition appeal

Saw the headline & thought "I can just picture that". I guess that's the thing about fame, especially fame like Arnie has - we've seen him laugh, I mean, really guffaw, in movies, and you can just imagine him tipping back his head & really letting rip with an Austrian chortle.

Arnie laughs at Paris petition appeal -

However, within the article itself there is absolutely no mention of how Arnie responded, just a business-like comment from the press secretary that the petition will be treated like any other.

I dunno, I take from that than no decision has been made. No laughing so far then.

On a similar topic (misleading headlines, not socialites & terminators), did anyone see the Weekend Dompost article on swingers parties arecently?

the headline said something like "Chances are, there's a swingers party taking place every week in your street."

However, within the article, it transpired that only one swingers club in the whole wider wellington region had been identified, and that they held parties once a month in a street in Upper Hutt.

So. Chances are very slim that there is ever a swingers party in your street, let alone each week, chances are slightly higher if you live in Upper Hutt.

Sign the Subway Petition!!

Go on, you know you want to.

Subway New Zealand and Subway George Street Dunedin to show compassion and common sense in the case of Jackie Lang, and for them to formally request the Police not to prosecute her for the alleged misappropriation of a $2 soda which she shared with a friend, and to resolve her employment status in a manner satisfactory to both Subway and Ms Lang.

Sign the Subway Petition (David Farrar)

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Scoop: True story of dog who captured the heart of a city

How odd - I only mentioned this story the other day, and now someone's published a book!

Scoop: True story of dog who captured the heart of a city

Bloggers Boycott Dunedin!

I don't do Subway, so any boycott would be pointless. However I do think some pointless gesture is warranted so I'm boycotting all of Dunedin from now on until they send me money. Or really cool gifts.

Aucklander at Large: Bloggers Boycott of Subway Restaurants

Unfair? Quite clearly. Who said life was fair?

Friday, May 04, 2007

More dog stuff!

Honestly, what sort of a moron fires an airgun at a guide dog?

Attacks a common threat to guide dogs

I must admit, wandering around the suburbs in sunglasses while attached to a golden labrador... does see me get some really considerate attention at times. I have considered carrying a white cane...

Wilma plays with a guide dog called Sasha now & then. I see Sasha all over the place, on the cable car, in town, with her owner. And occasionally she, Sasha & her family have run into Wilma & I, and I can confirm, that when the harness is off, a guide dog is just a dog.

And it's a pleasure to watch.

In other dog news, Martha's looking for a name for the latest addition to her family.


Yeah. I'm wearing a dress.

Anyway, click through & see if you can guess where the local heats for the NZ Rock, Paper, Scissors championship is being held.

"Just like a Star Trek convention... | the wellingtonista

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Brave dog, misleading headline

We have a poster-dog for the latest round of panic over marauding dogs.

Dogs 'given P' to make them fiercer

Good on the little fellow.

Meanwhile, beyond speculation & hearsay... is there anything in that report to substantiate the claim that P is being given to dogs? Anything? Anyone...?

It'll be interesting to see what happens now - will there be a crackdown on menacing and/or unregistered dogs? Or will the official response be to send more dog rangers to Magpie Lawn to catch the vicious spoodles off their leads in a totally isolated & deserted area?

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

First time boaties

all together now!

Click on any of the pictures for a bigger image.

Came across these people the other day. As we approached we surmised that the first car that had backed up to winch in the boat appeared to be in trouble (as in waves breaking over it).

Another car backed in to the area (which is clearly signposted as being soft sand) and a cable was attached to the first car, which was attached by another cable to the boat & trailer.

The 2nd car became stuck, and to our utter astonishment, they backed in their thrd car to tow out the 2nd, and first, and boat & trailer...


being nosy, and helpful, we swung by for a closer look & to give them the name & address of a guy down the road who owned a tractor.

Meanwhile, the tide was coming in & the sun had gone down.

In between hyperventilation gasps, they told us that this was the first time they'd had the boat in the water. No shit?


They tried several times to pull them all out, but to no avail, the towrope they were using kept coming off the tow bar.

Mrs Llew went with one of them in the 3rd car to get the tractor guy. We left them to it & since there were no cars visible in the surf the next day, I presume there was a happy outcome.

Oh, and the car that first got stuck, and had the waves breaking over it... well that guy had only bought it the day before.

Time to revisit the Pig Control Laws obviously

What's it going to take? A tragedy? Honestly, just one wandering pig is one wandering pig too many, which is probably just as well, as I only have one wandering pig story.

But is this pig registered? Is it dangerous? How long would it take to spit roast?

Your Place - Intruder Alert - wandering pig

The Empire (of SunnyO) STrikes Back

The Pig Owner
35 Ngaio Street
Otaki Beach

Dear Sir:

You will recall that I spoke to you at Easter this year about the need to keep your pig out of my property at SunnyO.

I have just fielded calls from my neighbours on the other side of my property telling me that the pig is still a regular intruder & has pushed through the fencing allowing my sheep to enter parts of the garden they have been specifically kept out of.

Accordingly, as I warned you at Easter, I have reported your pig to the District Council who have strict rules about wandering stock, and indeed, pigs on residential property. Please also note that I will be discussing the issue with your landlord & it seems that I may legally be able to claim from you:

1. Reparation for any damage to fences, property & plantings,
2. Reparation for lost feed to my sheep.
3. Trespass fees.

I do trust that you will now ensure that your pig stays off my property & please also note, that should I come across him there at any stage in future, do not expect him to be returned as I will have him impounded & removed.


Aloysius Llewette

Stray Concerns

This guy is surely ahead of his time

Ladies & Gentlemen, I give you the world's first Steve Irwin Impersonator.

Meet the kiwi crocodile hunter -