Monday, July 30, 2007

Jeremy Brett IS Sherlock Holmes

That's what it says on Volume 1 - Collectors' Edition of an otherwise untitled DVD Box Set.

5 stories, A Scandal in Bohemia, The Dancing Men, The Naval Treaty, The Solitary Cyclist, and - hang on tight folks - The Hound of the Baskervilles!! Yay!

Jeremy Brett - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There are many movies & series that I think to myself - I'll snap that up if it ever appears on DVD! But I usually don't.

This time I did. Reading the wikipedia entry on Brett, who without any trace of irony or hype really WAS Sherlock Holmes, I am surprised to find that not all the stories were filmed before his death. I wonder which they didn't get to?

In the late 80s, I used to sit around a sharebrokers' boardroom table (while ostensibly waiting for backups of a computer system to finish) drinking wine, scarfing leftovers from the kitchen & chatting with a bunch of youths stuffing letters into envelopes - Brendon, Andrew, the lovely Sue Abernathy, and some other guy, watching Brett as Holmes on TV, while I lauded the series and its star to these ignorant folk.

I daresay I changed their lives.

To quote Fox Mulder

I know of only one man who's successfully faked his own death..... ELVISSSSS!!!

That said, this is a fascinating story. Although the sense of faking your own death in New Zealand & thinking you'll never run into someone you know does seem rather questionable. And it was.

The man who faked his own death -

Friday, July 27, 2007

Big Grills Don't Fry

I'm working on my barbecue obsession (heh! Summer is COMING!!).

But in my defense, even Harry Belafonte had to leave a little grill in Kingston Town. And Frank Sinatra was very taken when the grill from Ipanema went wokking. Indeed, inspired!

Anyone else having problems posting?

New posts get published, but don't seem to appear on the site - until I republish several times.

How could you doubt a face like this?

I notice they leave such announcements till after lunchtime these days. Wonder why. "Gone by dinnertime" doesn't really have the same ring.

Minister faces sack after change to his story -

Update (11.52am):

What would I know? He's gone...

Thursday, July 26, 2007

For those who need to know

One of the most enjoyable books I've read in the last few years has been The Time Traveller's Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger. It's a bit of a chick-lit novel, although it is funny & action packed. And I unashamedly recommend it.

Briefly, it's about Henry, a man with a genetic disorder that causes him to travel through time at random intervals. He doesn't know when he'll go, where he'll go, nor how long he'll stay.

When Henry is in his thirties, he meets Claire, who is six. Henry visits Claire often from the future & even tells her that they will be married.

When Henry is 28, he meets Claire for the first time (although she's known him nearly all her life), she is 21.

And so it goes. An older Henry from the future even has to step in for his younger self at his own wedding. No-one is impolite enough to ask why the groom is suddenly dishevelled, unshaven, and looking 10 years older than when he left the room.

Anyway, I mention this purely because a movie is in production. Claire will be played by the awesome Rachel McAdams, Henry will be the equally awesome Eric Bana.

I think their days are numbered

United Future? Hah! Yes!!

But I mean pitbull terriers.

I have some sympathy for the owner in this case, the dog was tied up (and presumably registered) and a little girl ignored her mother's instructions & tried to pat the dog. Which was not receptive to the attention.

Pitbull bites chunk out of little girl's lip -

And as for the statement that "You don't see labradors running around constantly attacking people."... aren't labradors responsible for most of the dog attack statistics in NZ? (I have heard this, but I do not know if it is true). If it is, it's probably because there are more labradors than any other breed.

More than likely if this dog had been a labrador it wouldn't have been reported anyway.

But I do like the point made that responsibility for such events does not rest solely with the dog owners. People should not approach strange dogs (special dispensation for the Reserve Bank Governor - he can go for his life, I'll supply the pitbulls.)

Wednesday, July 25, 2007


I have a headache today. Vaguely nauseous too, and I'm tired. But I've been worse.

I think we'd finished our normal nightly quota of wine by the end of the first quarter during the netball last night.

SO of course, we kept going till the last grisly act of a grisly game was played. Too many mistakes.


Thank goodness for the All Blacks.

In other news, we've been watching a Canadian film called Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner. An all Inuit tale of love, betrayal, murder & revenge. It's set hundreds of years ago, so you can do worse that admire the workmanship of the snow glasses some of the characters sport.

The scenery is breathtaking, the details of Inuit life are fascinating, and the dogs really take a hammering (we haven't yet seen the end credits to see if any dogs were harmed in the making of this film, but I'm guessing they won't attempt that disclaimer. Nor a similar one for seals...)

I'm not sure, but I believe director Zacharias Kunuk's latest film, the Journals of Knud Rasmussen features in this years film festivals. Be worth seeing I imagine.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

So I joined

Facebook. And I've got two friends already. And I've checked out all their hot friends too (Damian Christie wonders if there is a word for that - I think it is probably "sad".).


What now?


Well it's all on now, seems Facebook has invited everyone in my contacts list, including the guy I roasted a while back for poor service.

Er... hi!

The knowledge.

OK, I think I have it all* worked out now.

The world will end when the two behemoths of current affairs stories collide. Yes. When a story involving both Posh AND Paris makes the front page, I suggest you duck & cover. Quickly.

LOLPosh: She's Alive! - Jezebel

* Yes, everything.

Meanwhile, is it just me? Or does Jezebel look like Addison from Grey's Anatomy?

Non-story of the day

WARNING! Loud shirts through the link may be disturbing to young or nervous viewers. Discretion is required.

Fer Feck's Sake, the ship was damaged in a storm! It's unfortunate but hardly avoidable, surely?

Couple high and dry after cruise scuttled

Maybe P&O got wind of the shirts they were planning to bring & engineered the whole thing...


In just the last week, I've been invited to sign up to or join:

1. Linkedln
2. Pownce
3. Facebook

Hey, thanks for the thoughts everyone (and a special hat tip to Mike, who over the years has invited me to sign up to dozens of services of one sort or another. Probably none of which I have taken up)

Now a question - what are all these things? (I mean, I could look I suppose, but I have a history of looking & not seeing the point anyway, so 25 words or less on what these are & why I need them might help. I mean, I'm just not an early adopter of new gizmos, like some people I know.)

But if it means more txts, notifications, or emails...

Monday, July 16, 2007

The things you see

When you're out without your camera.

Mt Doom

Look carefully at the first three pictures. When we caught sight of the beach that day, I said something like "Look how clear it is! I forgot the camera so I guess this'll be the day we can see clear through to Ruapehu.

Mt Doom 1

Look carefully at the space between the two groups of walkers. The phone doesn't do it justice at all.

Mt Doom 2

Click for a bigger image if that helps.

Snow in the Tararuas

Sunset the other day

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Scenes from SunnyO

The Pumphouse

The Pumphouse. Mrs Llew calls it the Boathouse for some reason.

The back of the Pumphouse

The stables

The back of the Tackroom

Looking towards the rail & SH1

The orchard

More trees & the house

The Dog, the avocado tree & the tackroom

Looking towards the North gate

Nut trees

Work in progress

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Then again...

It wasn't so bad after all! Mental note: only shop where the sales staff are hot & keep bending over so you can see down their top. Shopping as spectator sport.

Not that I looked of course!

But it was Rodd & Gunn, I tried on everything, including trousers. Everything looks quire different from out of the artificial light. Once I'd chosen I said:

"Do you mind if I wear the jacket out? I made some poor clothing choices this morning"

So, one moleskin jacket (poor moles, god knows how many I'm wearing right now), one pair of tan trousers to wear with them, and one pair of hush puppie shoes, which were ridiculously cheap, so who knows how long they'll last.

"Hush puppies? Lemme look - do they have animal tracks on the tread & a hidden compass?"

"What?" said the not at all hot, spotty youth from the shoe shop.

"Pah", I snorted, "things have gone really down hill with these shoes since I was 6 years old!"

"Um... yeah"

"Ok I'll take 'em, do you mind if I wear them out of here? I made some poor clothing choices this morning"

"Knock yourself out, animal track dude."

SunnyO: Hole in my shoe

Hole in my shoe


I looked in the sky where an elephant's eye
Was looking at me from a bubblegum tree
And all that I knew was the hole in my shoe
Which was letting in water (letting in water)
(letting in water)

I walked through a field that just wasn't real
With one hundred tin soldiers which stood at my shoulder
And all that I knew was the hole in my shoe
Which was letting in water (letting in water)
(letting in water)

(Narration: I climbed on the back of a giant albatross
What flew through a crack in the cloud
To a place where happiness reigned all year round
And music played ever so loudly)

I started to fall and suddenly woke
And the dew on the grass had soaked through my coat
And all that I knew was the hole in my shoe
Which was letting in water (letting in water)
(letting in water)

Traffic - 1967
Neil -1984

Dude, who knew this song was so spaced out!??

Anyway, I relate. The time has come to get some new shoes because all of the existing ones (except for the completely waterproof Skellerup Hikers I bought last week) are letting in water.

Indeed, I checked the shoe stash last night - that's where I put all my slightly damaged shoes until I get desperate & take them to be repaired. Or if it was last night, I realise they're shot & chuck 'em.

Then in the morning, I carefully hop around all the puddles on my way to work.

But enough is enough! The Skellerup Hikers don't look too swish with a suit, so hard, cold cash will have to be bartered for something at least vaguely corporate.

And I need a new jacket too.

The issue is, I can't be arsed shopping, well not for clothes anyway, I can spend ages in hardware, barbecue & farming stores. Shoes & jackets do not excite me. Mind you, neither do cold, wet feet, so something is about to give!


Oh, and apropos of nothing - I just noticed my title for this post said "Home in my shoe". Now corrected to save any confusion.

Monday, July 09, 2007

We interrupt...

Our self styled "No Paris Stories" embargo briefly, to bring you this, the lovely story of a woman who inherited Paris Hilton's discarded mobile phone number.

Calling Paris? Student inherits Hilton's number -

Reminds me of friends, whose flat in Thorndon inherited the number from an old brothel...

Winter Harvest

Brilliant! We harvested 4 mature trees, all, apparently, the same cultivar. I mention this because you'd expect the same cultivars to produce similar amounts, but one tree yielded 25 kilos, while the one at the lowest end of the range gave up only 5.2 kg.

There's also quite some difference in the size of the nuts produced by each tree.

The total? 49.9kg.

Didn't quite crack 50, but these will hang in the drying room for 3 months now, losing more weight.

And we saw a live rabbit! I can report that even if I'd been standing there with a loaded shotgun, pointing at the exact spot the rabbit bolted from, I'd have missed.

And Borat brought our mower back. Well, he looks & sounds like Borat, although his real name is Sebastian. And I'm guessing he's Swiss. But he'll always be Borat to us now. And bonus, Borat has fixed the mower, so that it picks up the mown grass & leaves.

He checked out the derelict farm trike too, which has never worked. And he huffed & he puffed & in a burst of oily smoke, the trike came to life. Borat nearly went the other way, as he stumbled from the smoke filled stable.

He showed us how to use it, which is academic, because after he left three of us nearly threw our shoulders out trying to start it again. We've given up. I'll take it back to Borat & have him fix the electric ignition, sod these broken pull start devices.

Oh, and even in 3rd gear it goes about 5 kph. Woohoo, watch the bend!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Harvest time.

We're gearing up for the first nut harvest of the year.

I've mentioned it somewhere before, but we have some trees that drop their nuts (a phrase that causes much amusement for the teenagers in the family), and some that jealously hold onto them.

In addition, some trees are harvested around July, and some around October or November.

As far as I can make out, we have 4 trees ready to harvest & they're all droppers.

Oh, and they are biannual apparently, they have high & low years. This is a low year & so we're not expecting a huge crop. Which is fine, since we're new at this.

Funny, we've alerted the family & friends, and suddenly everyone is busy. "WTF? SInce when are you having surgery this weekend? Knee replacement? That shouldn't stop you!"

But what will happen is:

Large drop mats will be laid around the base of the tree (one tree at a time since it seems, nuts from different trees should not be mixed up). (And I digress at this stage to mention something that has just occurred to me - I have left the one & only orchard ladder that we owned at a property that was recently sold. Bugger.), then we send child labour up into the branches to bring down all the nuts which have not yet dropped.

Then, someone will drive (dodgy electric ignition allowing) a mower with a trailer attached to it into the orchard. We will fill the trailer with nuts, and then we will convey them to the dehusking machine.

There may be variations on that last step, if there are not enough nuts to warrant a trailer, child labour will carry the nuts in buckets to the dehusker.

The dehusker is a noisy & dirty machine, which looks like it was put together by a one armed chimpanzee with a mechanno set, but it does work.

The nuts, will then be dried in ovens for a couple of hours at a very low heat, bagged in mesh onion bags, and hung out to dry. I have no idea how long they need to hang after that.

Then we start on another tree & repeat.

Probably won't get to it this weekend (because I probably won't have them by then), but I'll be installing at some stage, a Gnome Village, probably in the orchard, but maybe not... something to surprise & delight any younger visitors we have.

Not that I encourage young visitors, but sometimes they do sneak past the hounds.

Er... why?

$10m in bid to keep Team NZ afloat -

FFS - spend it on something useful, like a bypass through wellington or something.

God knows the last one was such a success.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Jump back around 5 years

The previous owners of SunnyO made a silly mistake in my opinion. They looked around their property, and noticing a half acre paddock with 7 mature macadamia trees in it, they thought, "Let's plant 50 or 60 more! Then we'll buy a husking machine, a cracking machine, several ovens, and we'll build a processing plant & drying room!" Brilliant, then we'll watch the money roll in because macadamias sell for $55 a kilo!"

First mistake - $55 per kilo. I dunno about that, all I know is, I can order a kilo over the web for $8.

Second mistake - if they'd turned around, they'd have noticed the mature avocado tree, which produces heroically all year around, and whose fruits merely need picking & packing.

I just cannot believe that they didn't think "Sod these nuts which are about as tough as cannonballs & require a huge capital investment, let's plant 50 of these avocado trees!"

Oh well.

Transformers - the movie.

it turns into what?

I don't get it.

This begs the question...

Who will play Lindsay?

Lindsay to play Paris? -

Anyway, on the pest front, the most interesting development was that rats managed to gnaw through the container, and ate all the rat poison.