Thursday, June 16, 2005

It's easier to leave than to be left behind
-REM


So this is it ... goodbye Wellington.
Don't leave me.
Sweetcheeks, don't make this harder than it already is.
Then tell me you love me, tell me you'll stay.
I can't make empty promises.
You can, just this once.
Those days are behind me now, I've changed. Hell Wellington, we've both changed. Five years ago you didn't even have a decent beach to lie on.
I'll make another, anything.
Look kid, I know this ain't right, but I'm going to miss the way you caress my...
Fine! Just forget about me and get on board that goddamn plane, but... but...
What is it darling? You're crying.
...but please, don't remember me like this.
Like what? Hey, c'mon doll. You wanna know what I remember about you? Your stunning natural beauty, your innate sense of cool, they way all your best bits are within easy walking distance. Not some pretty lady standing on the runway trying every which way but how to tell her man that she loves him.
But you're moving to Auckland!
Auckland means nothing to me, she's a means to an end. The town bike. Everyone's had her one time or another. It's you that I want.
And I want you.
Ah what the hell, I wasn't gonna say this but you know what I'll miss most of all?
What's that?
The way you blow sweet nothings in my ear.
(sniff) Promise you'll write?
Every day. But if I don't, remember, you'll always be right here, in my heart.
You sure know how to make a girl feel swell.
I know. I'd better go.
Stay.
Goodbye Wellington.
Stay...(sniff) Goodbye Chuck.
Goodbye.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Packing his bags,gotta go, gotta go
Packing his bags,gotta go
He's a Samsonite Man
Maybe he is just a rollin stone
Wandering from here to there
Searching for a place to call his home
-Alicia Keys

Love letters. A Truman Capote biography. A jar of coriander. Two postcards (unsent). Six squeaky nuns. A signed Super Furry Animals poster. A book of (my own) god-awful poems. A Scrabble turntable. A film script. A ‘You’ll Win With Gore!’ cigar from 2000. Cheese. A maroon rugby shirt. An Edward Hopper calendar. Tickets and programmes from UK gigs. The baby. The bathwater.

If you’d met me today you would have gone home and said boy, that Chuck, he is ruthless! And ya know what? You would have been right, for today was the day I had to move on up and move on out, or whatever pineapple head M.People shemale sang about. And what looks like a recipe for disaster up there is in fact a list of things I’ve had to throw away. Not that I really wanted to, but in the interests of avoiding clutter they were decisions that had to be made

I’ve lived in this lovely little flat for a year and have taken a certain pride in keeping it clean. But tonight as I write, boxes are stacked in the corner, bookshelves are stripped, pictures are unhooked and a pile of rubbish lies in the middle of the floor. And truth be told I’m sad to be leaving my pad and this damn fine city. But as compatriot Jessie will tell you leaving Welly's never easy...

Sure, I’m happy to be heading to greener pastures and wouldn’t trade in the opportunity for nuttin’ but i'm sorry to leave, especially as I’ve been so happy here. So tonight’s my last night, I’ve got a bottle of red wine to drink, a plastic dog to console and a freezer to watch defrost. Wish you were here.

Ugh, enough gloom. Who wants a nun? I’ve saved them from the dumpster and have six to give away – simply choose and name your favourite from the fine specimens below and tell me in 10 words or less why your sweet singin' sister deserves to be saved. Numbered 1-6, left to right.
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Or they burn.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Don’t you know I’m still standing better than I ever did
Looking like a true survivor, feeling like a little kid
- Elton John

Alas no Paris last night, I knew it was over. Instead a rather ordinary dream about a Rhodesian Ridgeback that I had to housetrain before its master came home from work. I think I did a pretty good job, I had it fetching a newspaper. I’m not sure what happened in the end though, I think it segued seamlessly into a dream where I was standing by myself at a party, leaning against the wall by the speaker, nodding my head, occasionally jerking my arms, perhaps in time with the music, perhaps not, while fun loving people swirled around me…

Wait a moment …that was no dream! That was Saturday night!

It’s true I’m afraid. It was a great party and I had a ball, but I woke up the next day concerned that I had spent far too long in my own little world which, incidentally was quite a lot of fun. Anyhow, an e-mail this morning confirmed my worst fears. In several photographs there’s people having a good time, dancing, mincing, whatever, and there, lurking in the background, eyes closed and in exactly the same spot …is me. Presumably these photos were taken over a decent amount of time, and presumably I was having quite a decent time at the time, but it certainly looks strange in photographs. Sort of like Where’s Wally? Look! There he is!
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As my Canadian friend Leonard might say, weird hey?

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

I gotta job to do
But that's the easy part
What's really killing me
Is this broken heart
You're hard to leave, tough to go
A heartache's ahead, this I know.
- Billy Ray Cyrus

Well the Lions have won, someone’s giving birth rather noisily on television, and I have a job! Yes – what a remarkably clean baby (I’m half watching Lost). I went for it, really wanted it, and got it, which I’m rather chuffed about. Only problem is I’ll have to pack up Brutus in my old kit bag and follow the well trod path up north, leaving my flat, family and friends here in the wundy sutty. I’ll be sorry to leave Wellington of course, but I’m looking forward to a bit of welcome change. Auckland, fetch me some kippers you old maid, I’ll be up for breakfast shortly.

So what else? Winter’s set in, I’ve got a cold and Paris Hilton has been coming on to me in my dreams. Which is great, but a little odd. Odd in that I don’t find her particularly attractive yet she’s been popping up in my dreams with unnerving regularity. Not particularly attractive, snorts Angry Sci-Fi Fan from Hamilton, pah!. Well it’s true Angry, I like her mischievous demeanour and her dopey grin, but that’s about the sum of it. Put it this way, if I was after such attributes I’d have settled for Wilma a long time ago, even Curious George. But that’s beside the point. I won’t elaborate further other than to say that after a brief courtship we now seem to be something of an item.
I’m really starting to like you Chuck, said Paris on Monday as I made the bed.
Despite myself Paris, I'm starting to feel the same way, I said on Tuesday.
By last night however she pointedly humiliated me in front of her well-heeled friends and our relationship may well have hit the rocks. I’ll let you know, though I fear I’ve broken the spell by spilling my guts in this piece. Time will tell, but for now, where’s that diazepam?

Apologies for the delay in spilling my guts, I just had to put a few things in order. And now that they are, onward ho!

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Hey, it's good to be back home again
Sometimes this old farm feels like a long lost friend
Yes, 'n, hey it's good to be back home again
- John Denver

Well yes, I suppose it has been a while since my last post, time just passed and suddenly it's Thursday, two weeks since my last muddled missive and well, there's not a lot to write home about, let alone a blog.

The film was... an experience. Perhaps a little lacklustre after last years film where it was the thrill of the new, but good to see the old team back together.
This year I felt we were rather hamstrung by the genre of science fiction, cue much indecision as to which road to go down, for as Dan and I discussed on the road trip up, science fiction is a setting rather than a genre. Star Wars is a western in space, Alien a horror is space and ours was, well, um something in a carpark. Anyhow, it’ll be up on a website sooner or later so have a look and throw bananas at the screen then.

And now it’s back home in Wellington and it’s good to be back. My gerbera was chuffed, Brutus whelped in delight and me? Well I poured myself a drink, toasted this fine city and collapsed in a pile of old laundry.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

I'm heading north
Gonna see what this heart's really worth
I guess it's time to be on my own
- Alison Krauss

Except that unlike Alison Krauss I'm not heading north on my own, I'm going with B.M. Dan to lay siege to the 48 Hour Film Competition. After the successes of last year it was made very hard to say no, so here we go again. We set sail at 6am, Auckland by mid afternoon then the fun begins at 7pm. What will the genre be? The line of dialogue? The character? The prop? The film itself?
Well right now I have no idea, but the next time I write another word here I'll know our film like the back of my hand - veiny, hairy, yet oddly appealing. And that's if we're lucky.

So here we go, see you on the other side.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Baby, please stop crying, stop crying, stop crying
Baby, please stop crying, stop crying, stop crying
Baby, please stop crying.
You know, I know, the sun will always shine
So baby, please stop crying 'cause it's tearing up my mind.
- Bob Dylan


Wanganui ladies and gentlemen, that’s where I was. Funny place to go I know, but I felt the call of the old town and simply could not resist. That river. Those people. Michael Laws.

Actually I didn’t see the mayor, he’s probably still recovering from his frankly humiliating exit from Treasure Island when Toddy’s jaw told him to get lost. Either that or the local brethren have gagged him with a headscarf, holding him ransom beneath the railway bridge.

I didn’t see the mayor, I didn’t see many of the people and saw but a glimpse of the river, but no matter, I was in Wanganui on family business. My dear cousin has had a couple of babies since I’ve been away and yesterday was the time for me to go ga-ga over them. Except they got in first and went ga-ga over me. Within minutes I was muckier than an Old West spittoon and making desperate glances at anyone to whom I might offload the offspring – but to no avail, I was Ronald McDonald, Bob The Builder and both Mickey and Maisy Mouse all rolled in to one. Glasses pulled off? You betcha. Slobbered upon? Uh-huh. Zip-fly played with? Yessiree bob.

I find that like cats, kids apprehend your discomfort and take a certain glee in leaping once more onto your britches and no matter how often you say ‘Oh ho, yes, nice now settle down kiddo’ they do the exact opposite. Until yesterday I thought house husband may be viable career, but no way Jose, when it comes to kids, Chuck’s checking out. Which he duly did while wiping gooey strands of snot from his shoulder.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Youth culture killed my dog
And I don't think it's fair
- They Might Be Giants

Poor old dog, she ain’t looking the best. Not that she ever really did, but this time I think it’s curtains. Last week she started coughing up blood and spent the weekend at the vet but now she’s come back home, not exactly with a new lease on life, but with enough doggie drugs to make the end an easy one.

Luckily it’s not my dog (Brutus is made of plastic) but I’ve taken it a few walks, thrown it a few bones, that sort of thing. It’s my mother’s partner’s dog and he’s had it for about 16 years, so in dog years that’s getting on a bit, 112 I think. Oh well, time to step on a rainbow and enter that great big kennel in the sky.

On the other hand my terrier Brutus is doing fantastically! Here he is earlier today enjoying the Wellington sunshine.
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Wednesday, May 04, 2005

I know a little place, we can get there for the break of day.
I said in these shoes?
No way, jose
I said honey, let’s stay right here.
- Kirsty Maccoll

Corker. Stunner. Red-hot mumma. Call her what you will but this girl was summit else. Renee Headliner take a jump and make room for the cutest cobbler on Lambton Quay. She had it all, the looks, the body, hell even her voice was the sweetest I’d heard since Patsy Riggir.

It should be the simplest thing in the world, buying a pair of shoes from a pretty girl, but yesterday it was fraught with frustration and indecision. It went something like this.

I saw a pair of boots I liked in the window, went in, saw her, caught my breath, picked up the boots and approached her with them in my hand like a retriever bringing home a stick.
I… I’d like to try these on please.
Shorwa, she said, take a seat.
From there it should have been easy but ten minutes later I was surrounded by more black leather than the first day auditions for Goth Idol. I must have tried on at least six pairs of very similar boots at least twice. My feet seemed to fall between two sizes. My angel was getting frustrated. This wasn’t going well at all.

No, they’re the 42’s
The 44’s?
The 42’s look bigger.
Than the 44’s?
Yes the 44’s.
Try the 43’s.
In what style?
Those ones.
These ones?
Didn’t I already try these on?
No… Do you need a shoehorn?
Too tight I’m afraid, let me try those ones in the 44’s.
But the 44’s don’t fit you.
But they’re bigger than the 43’s
Smaller. Remember?

She’d wrapped me in her delicate cocoon of confusion and I stared, transfixed by those beautiful green eyes. Getting sleepy now…
You know what sweetcheeks? Let’s forget the boots and go get a drink, is what I should have said. But I didn’t. Instead I smiled sweetly, looked her in the eye and rammed my oddly sized foot into yet another piece of cowhide. And whaddaya know?
We looked to each other, to the boot, then back to each other again.
Could this be the one?
She was excited as Cinderella, and I was as pleased as Punch - the boots fitted perfectly! I could have kissed her (actually I could have done a lot more) and as I stood up and zipped up the ankle, I knew, these were the boots for me.
We made some small talk. She giggled a bit. I flicked my hair. She zip-zapped my card. I walked out grinning like a maniac.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

I'm sittin' on the dock of the bay
Watching the tide roll away
Ooo, I'm just sittin' on the dock of the bay
Wastin' time
- Otis Redding

Dr.Richard Kimble rang at four in the morning to cancel. No, too rough. Gale force winds, I’ll call again at 9.

Bitchin’. I’d been looking forward to this all week. Five of us were set to sail Cook Strait to the Marlborough Sounds but if it was likely the voyage was to turn out like the first episode of The Lost Islands then I was happy to leave it. The phone rang at 9 but it wasn’t the skipper, rather Miss E. expressing her disappointment at not being able to get across. Damnit, I said, never let weather get in the way of a good weekend, lets grab the unicorn by the by the horn and get across any way we can! And so with stirring music in the background I called around and secured two cheapish flights to Picton. The weekend had begun.

Once we’d blasted through the cloud the weather gods smiled and allowed us stunning views as we soared above the sounds.
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Half an hour later the man with the most unpleasant teeth in the southern hemisphere was driving us to Anakiwa offering tasty anecdotes on everything from Scott Watson (“threatened me with a knife once”) to bad drivers (“Germans: the worst”). But he got us there in one piece and wow, what a place. I’d never been to Anakiwa before but from what I’ve seen it’s the prettiest bay in the sounds. Take a look!
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And that was pretty much the view from the bach where, for the next three days, I did nothing but sit, think, read, relax and chat. It was great actually, nice company, nice place, clean air, clean living. Miss E. even went for a swim which I wasn’t quite up to, but I did do a couple of hours of the Queen Charlotte walkway that I’d like to do more of, someday.

I thought a lot about what the future may hold, but almost every question I answered seemed to lead on to so many more, so I simply lost track and watched oystercatchers wade into the water. They have very bright beaks you know.

And then all too fast it was over and ‘jaws’ was driving us back to Picton, a little quieter this time, perhaps having used all his anecdotes on the outward journey. We arrived back to Wellington on the ferry to be greeted by a howling southerly which is still thrashing around outside today. But it was a great weekend, thank you Miss E. it was just what I needed.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Ooooh, ya gotta ask some questions
Whenever there's a doubt
That you're wondering about
Ask and find out
- Sesame Street

Well what to do? I visited my government sponsored life coach today and we bemoaned the fact that a smart, urbane, debonair, sophisticated, fine looking fellow such as me was having such trouble finding work. She suggested I look deep inside myself and try and answer a few key questions. Actually she didn’t suggest, she just wrote the questions down and passed them across the desk to me. There was then an awkward pause. I said I’d do my best and come up with answers, but surely being an ENFP absolves me from such introspection?

I dunno, maybe I’m shooting myself in the foot, but I don’t like looking too deep, the surface is fine, lets just snorkel for a while – ooh look, there’s a pretty fish. ------->

In other news I finally finished my cork board and it’s full of friends and friendly faces, so if you ever meant anything to me at all, chances are you’re staring at me now. And if you’re not, well, I’ll keep some room – there’s always room here for friendly faces.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Don't wanna see anybody
And hear advice about my job and my life
I'm in a bad mood and I'm so bored today.
- The Peawees

Were I to do a pie-graph of my student loan spending, a decent wedge would be coloured brown with a large ‘L’ to indicate Lovelock’s Sports Bar. And so it was that on Friday night I returned to my old haunt to watch the Hurricanes get beaten and the ‘KeeWee’s’ lose the leeegue to Australia. A winning start to the weekend, but good to be back at the place I had pissed away so much money.

And then, perhaps brought on by those double losses, a realisation of my debt or the sudden arrival of winter, a darkness settled upon Chuxville. It eventually lifted last evening when the sky turned a brilliant kaleidoscope of pink, orange and yellow, but in the meantime, Chuck turned mean.

Well maybe not mean in the cutting fingers off with secateurs, extracting teeth with a hammer or exploding semtex pre-inserted in the victims’ anus kind of mean, but rather a sort of mean mood, selfish maybe, intolerant definitely. Actually those three examples of meanness come from the films I chose to watch this weekend, namely Oldboy and Man on Fire, which perhaps weren’t the best ones to watch in a mood such as mine. Oldboy was a fairly vile film in fact and I’m unsure why it has garnered such acclaim apart from a nifty fight scene in a corridor, and an unsettling premise. The violence though was just a little too much for me, specifically a scene that reminded me of the time I sat alongside Lloyd Scott (the thinking man’s Crumpy) at a one-off Paramount screening of Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma – which I wouldn’t recommend to anyone (neither the film nor sitting alongside L.S.)

Anyhow, enough about the flicks. You’ll be happy to hear that my disposition has improved and wow, that sky last night, you couldn’t help but feel all was right with the world. And so it was that I popped into the supermarket on my way home, only to discover that my much abused Visa card had finally had enough. I had been declined. Perhaps time for another student loan?

Friday, April 22, 2005

Did you feel the breeze, my love?
Summer's kiss is over.
- The Afghan Whigs


My tongue played with my new filling like a kitten with a ball of wool so last night I numbed both with a bottle of chardonnay. It worked a treat!

Speaking of teething problems, the inept weatherman on tv told me today would be the last day of summer. He then paused, forgot where he was, grinned, paused, remembered where he was, drew a breath and carried on with the weather report. Dude c’mon – put some effort in! Or less.

Anyhow, despite all that he was right, and today has been a pearrrrrler. Birds singing, sun shining, Ian Johnstone going to the toilet. Yep, that’s right, I caught him as he found himself caught short and did a funny walk to the toilet in Aro park. I was tempted to point and shout after him ‘hey you’re that guy off the telly aren’t ya! Yeah you are, you’re him off Crimewatch aren’t ya!’ but I thought I’d give a senescent celebrity some privacy.

And it is for this, ladies and gentlemen, that I shall remember the last day of summer.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

You'll be a dentist
You have a talent for causing things pain
Son, be a dentist
People will pay you to be inhumane!
- Little Shop of Horrors


Yowsers!
Actually it wasn’t that bad, just when the drill goes in y’know and you’re trying to act all manly and cool and tooth chips are flying around your mouth like a snowstorm and your jaw aches like a fluffer. Lesser men would have wept, but as my ‘kind to be cruel’ dentist informed me, that hole in the 7th tooth front end was my own fault. Cut down on the sugars he said. Keep up the flossing he said. And stop grazing, give your teeth a break between meals. Pah! I protested, I floss at least four times a week, clean exceptionally well and have a winning smile, what gives?
By way of answering he simply bared his teeth, and boy, they were clean.
Touche.

I was tempted to mutter a surly ‘whatever’ but smiled back at him and shuffled out the door. Then to add insult to ennui, he called out after me, you’ll have to make an appointment with the hygienist for next week, clean those choppers up a bit.

I ignored him and kept walking down the stairs until I was safely on the street. Then pulled out a raspberry K Bar and chewed and chewed and chewed.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Keep rollin' rollin' rollin'
- Limp Bizkit.

They thought it would never happen. They were wrong.

That’s right! Je return!
Actually je tried a couple of times previously, but wanted to start with a splash y’know, with a big story, a piece that would say “hey pal, look at me’ like a nice new pair of chinos. But aside from a theory that the Queen was subtely, yet undeniably transforming into a werewolf, there was nothing I could think of, so here I go. Pulling outta the station all shiny and new - and boy, it feels like going home.

Friday, March 25, 2005

coming soon...

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Think I'll pack it in and buy a pick-up
Take it down to L.A.
Find a place to call my own and try to fix up
Start a brand new day.
-Neil Young

Sorry, but this is the end of the line for the Pettifog train. Sure, it's been fun, I've enjoyed it, but like all trains, this one's rusted and spluttered to a slow halt. I could keep chugging on, greasing the wheels and stoking the engines, but to honest my heart's not in it, and all that hot air is making me queasy. Thank you for your readership and your comments and to compadre's Jen, Megan, Sarah and Damian, keep up the good work. But don't worry about me, I'll be fine. In fact, I believe I see a train comin' round the corner right now, bright, shiny and new - might just jump aboard and see where it takes me.

But for now good luck, goodbye, see you further down the line.
A dios.
Chuck.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

I wanna take you where the night never ends
I feel the need to sweep you off your feet
You and me, we should be dancin’ in the sheets
- Shalamar

My garden sparrow had further reason to laugh at me yesterday. It was washing day in Chuxville so after a warm wash, on high water level and fast spin speed my sheets were ready to dry.

(A gripping way to start I know, but wait, it gets better.)

Being Wellington it was as windy as baked bean tasters underwear so after much huffing and puffing I managed to peg up my sheets against the blasting northerly. As I left for my busy day of meetings and brokering I saw a peg fly loose and a sheet billow around in the gale like a Team New Zealand spinnaker. I raced over to the washing line to try and pull it back but with a sudden wind change I found myself completely enveloped in the white cotton. I grabbed at what I could, like a hobbit clutching at Pauline Gillespie's blouse and felt the red mist rise amongst the white, white sheet. Eventually I gained some purchase and yanked as hard as I could. Pegs flew everywhere, narrowly missing my feathered friend who flew to the safety of a lemon tree, while I stamped a muddy footprint on the corner of my white, white sheet. The sparrow shook his head disapprovingly as the sheet spun around on its tether draping me like a bespectacled Nero. And then it was back to square one. Warm wash, high water, spin speed fast.
Bitchin'.

I did think of a new invention though, heated double strength clothes pegs. Double strength of course to counter the Wellington wind, but heated also, because there's that little bit of fabric beneath the pegs that always manages to stay a little wet, and for the life of me, I don't know what to do about it. So there we go, off to invention patents this afternoon.

Oh! Speaking of old ladies, did you hear about that 60 year old woman who wrestled a crocodile off another man in Queensland? Yikes! Wouldn't want to mess with her, but then again I bet she wouldn't muck about getting washing off the line either.

Saturday, October 09, 2004

But here I am again mixing misery and gin
Sitting with all my friends and talking to myself
- Brendan Dugan

Well, the results are in. Not the Aussie election, not the NZ mayoralty elections or even the Fair Go Ad Awards*, but Chuck's 'Which Celebrity Would You Explode?' poll. Well, we had a huge turnout, far bigger than expected, and it brings me much joy to tell you that thirty-six percent of you want to detonate Paul Holmes on a beach in Scotland. Which is nice, thanks to all who voted, and thank you for keeping Dugan safe. Did I tell you I finally got around to playing his record? Well, what can I say, it's utter crap, but enjoyable utter crap, here's the chorus from the standout track on Side One.

But here I am again mixing misery and gin
Sitting with all my friends and talking to myself
I look like I'm having a good time but any fool can tell
That this honky tonk heaven really makes me feel like hell

Maybe it would have been better to blow up Brendan after all.
Actually, what ever happened to New Zealand Country Music? This 'honky tonk heaven' Brendan refers to? I remember staring transfixed at the big neon lasso on the weekly TV show That's Country. I'd put away Action Man and watch bearded troubadours sing out their hearts and denim clad damsels wail in Southern accents, then say 'aw cheers guys thanks' in 'Ainslee to checkout please' voices. Bring 'em back I say, bring 'em all back. All those in favour, stamp your feet, wave your Stetson in the air and say 'Hell yes, that's country!"

* It is my sincere hope that the TV ONE 'Ten Fingers' kid and the M.J. Hooker 'Thank you Mr Hooker' kid get together later in life, endure years of joyless sex and produce a troupe of identical all-singing, all-dancing child performers named 'Sparkle'. Yeah.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Perforation problems no one home
Stumbling like a dirty slave
- Iggy Pop


Indeed Iggy, I chipped a hole in my tooth, there's a running sore on my toe and a freight train running through the middle of my head. I'm usually pretty healthy but everything seems to be going a little downhill at the moment. Those just-add -water Just For Men tablets maybe aren’t all they cracked to be. I’ll need to take a few more to be fit though, the Big Day Out is just over the horizon


The line-up so far for NZ’s answer to Altamont includes The Streets, Shihad, The Beastie Boys and the Chemical Brothers who played last time I was there. I remember that because the big robots on the video screen leapt out at me and grabbed my heart and squeezed it in time to the outstanding big beats which poured forth into the sweat filled tent which was surprisingly pleasant, which was a nice day, which is about all I remember, I think, hey, isn't that... thank you mr. hoffman...

Anyhow, looking forward, I enjoy the Streets very much. The Beastie Boys I've never really liked, they just sound too whiney and their rhymes are dumb. Like K.D. Lang. But I did annoy people at certain parties a few years ago my jumping in front of them and yelling "Jump into the party disrupt the whole scene!' but it was generally agreed to be a tiresome performance. Still not quite as bad when I was of the understanding that everyone had heard Justin Timberlake new 'Rock Your Body' single. I was at a party, high as a kite and everyone looked really good. Enough reason therefore to approach a rather stunning young lady and tell her I was "gonna have you naked by the end of this song" followed by three tsch! tsch! tsch!'s and one breathy Michael Jackson 'yeah'.
She stared at me as if I had killed her mum.

But who knows if I'll go BDO'ing next year or not. I might wait for more 'big names to be announced!' or just put on a record, make a cup of Earl Gray, light a pipe, put my feet up, nurse my sore toe, and reminisce about that devastating big beat sound.

Monday, October 04, 2004

Come and smile, don't be shy,
Touch my bum, this is life,
- The Cheeky Girls

Ahh, that's better.
I just needed a break you see. I'd like to say there are all sorts of exciting reasons why I haven't updated this page for a few weeks, but there are none, I just, ya know, needed a break. So thanks for popping by, your patience I assure you, will be rewarded.

So what news of you?
Well I've been fine, just entered a period of inter-seasonal anxiety followed by a warm afterglow of calm which has resulted in me having slightly pinker cheeks than normal. So there we go, three weeks away and all I can report is pink cheeks, fun times if you're at Pitcairn High, but otherwise a dim result.

But yes, pink cheeks, a result of sunshine, which I must confess to lying idly in from time to time. Yesterday I christened my front lawn by sprawling in the grass reading the paper, then retrieved a cool beer from the fridge, wiped it's across my glistening brow and said
'If only we might fall,
Like cherry blossoms in the spring
So pure and radiant.'
A sparrow nodded in quiet appreciation.

Pink cheeks, what else? Well, I had a maths teacher once and he was a prick with pink cheeks. Actually all my maths teachers were pricks (apart from one I developed a teenage Roger Kerr-like crush on) but what singles this one out that his face was a mess of burst blood vessels. He stunk of booze, naturally, but the most distracting thing was trying to study trigonometry while capillary chaos theory exploded across his blotched, sweaty cheeks. But he had the last laugh. He caned me for dousing his classroom in Brut 33 aftershave. The brute.

Anyhow, it's nice to be back.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Cos this old world has been fine with me really
And I’m thankful for seeing another spring
It’s gonna be better this time another spring
It’s gonna be groovier this time another spring
It’s what’s happening this time
- Nina Simone

Looks like winter's over! Hurrah! I hope so anyway, I'm trying my darndest to usher it in by wearing suggestive clothing, or at least clothing suggestive of spring. So out go wooly jerseys and silly hats and in go T-shirts, micro shorts and jandals. Hooray.

But like winter, my love affair with the sardine may be over. It began like any other serving of sardine a la chuck, except that when I peeled the can open I was struck by abnormal size, they were more like a puppy's paw than little fish. Still, in for a penny, in for a pound as grandfather used to say and I smeared them across toast. But ah ah, something ain't right here, sardines aren't supposed to feel crunchy. What is that sticking in my throat? Well Frankie, it was none other than sardine vertebrae, about four centimetres long, white and prickly like an old man's toenail. I spat the rest out, threw away the can and laughed heartily. No doubt I’d angered Poseidon, and it was poetic piscene justice for my exploding whale story. Good one... fish.

But my sardine munching came about after a minor disaster in the freezer, which for about 12 hours didn't really live up to its name. Rather, everything turned soggy and smelly and I couldn't work out why. I checked the back, checked the front and was on the point of ringing my hearing impaired landlord to give him an earful, when I noticed the plug hanging out of the wall. Nerts!

Right, enough chit chat, I'd better go and return some library books and grab my coat on the way, because dammit, it’s absolutely freezing outside.

Monday, September 13, 2004

Rejoice they sing
They worship their own space
In a moment of love,
they will die for their grace
Don't kill the whale
- Yes

Way, way up north in Scotland there's a small coastal town whose name I can't remember. Sometime in the 1950s a whale decided he would beach himself on the shores of this pretty little town and duly exhaled his last big whale breath during the night. In the morning the townsfolk discovered this huge beast on their beach and set about trying to remove it. They tried dragging it with tractors back into the ocean, they tried cutting it up, they even tried burning it, but to no avail. Soon enough this quaint seaside town way, way up in the north of Scotland began to smell very, very badly of rotting whale.

One man had an idea. He'd served in the Black Watch during World War II and had a number of un-used grenades, dynamite and un-exploded mines, and after consultation with the rest of the town, decided that the best course of action was to simply blow the bugger up. All through the night he worked, surrounding the leviathan with explosives so that by morning, at 9am he stood on the road overlooking the beach, detonator in hand. The townsfolk hid in their homes watching through crossed fingers as with a flourish the man pressed the button.

The explosion was heard from miles away and was so forceful it blew in the windows of every beachfront property and paralysed the man holding the detonator. But worse was to come because for the next ten seconds after the explosion, fat, bone, blubber and rotting whale flesh rained down covering the town in a pulpy, putrescent slime. As you can imagine, the clean up took some time, but it was the smell that took years to leave, and many residents left before it did, never to return.

I only tell you this story because after watching Tom Hanks ham his way through half an hour of the interminable Terminal I was imagining the mess he would make if he too were exploded on the beach of a quaint seaside town way, way up in the north of Scotland.

Thursday, September 09, 2004

You like to say your
Man's a celebrity
Baby what's the deal?
I thought you wanted me for me
- NSync

Sunday night on the ferry there he was dressed in a driza bone. Monday night too, acting the goat with his mates. Tuesday night trying to look cool on the telly. Then last night, there he was standing at the Matterhorn, looking like the man, those black coal stone eyes staring right at me. Freaky stuff, and I don't want to frighten you all, but I have reason to believe that I'm being stalked.
Ho ho, but by who?
Well Frankie, it's none other than Matthew goddamn Ridge.

I've been stalked by celebrities before, I don't say that to boast, and anyway I'm quite cool with it, it's other people who have the problem. Louis Theroux stalked me one afternoon in London and Sophie Ellis Bextor once followed me home singing all the while 'Take Me Home' which I duly did, and, hold on, no I'm making that up. Anyhow, back to Ridgey. I'm not a fan. I liked him as a footy player, he was great, but I do wish he'd now shut the hell up and get off my television screen, and dammit, out of my life.

My job interview at a 'leading tertiary institution' went swimmingly well yesterday. There were three of them, good cop, bad cop and one who looked like Michael Douglas. He said nothing at all but wrote down every killer bee response I made. By the end, why hell, they were all good cops and I was tempted to take 'em out for coffee and doughnuts. But as they say, if you think the interview goes well, then it usually aint, but I find out early next week. Actually it was nice to have a good interview, I've had my share of the bad, including one that I'll never forget where every answer I gave was met with a look of disgust leading me to terminate the interview within 20 minutes using the immortal line
Look, sorry, I don't think this has gone as well as I might have planned.
No, he said, I don't think it has. Interview over. It still gives me nightmares. But now I wonder just what old thick lips Ridge would have done?

Monday, September 06, 2004

Oh, the weather outside is frightful,
But the fire is so delightful,
And since we've no place to go,
Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.
- ?



I hadn't been in the snow in ages, and as such wanted to celebrate in the time-honoured manner of throwing it at my friends. So we found a suitable field, separated, and began to hurl it around. This was harmless fun for a while, but then vicious Chuck turned up and completely took over. I watched, unable to resist as I reached down and transformed a fistful of snow into a nasty clump of ice. I took my aim and flung it as hard as I could straight at Wendy's head.

Whoah! Back up there, what's this? Snow in Wellington? asks Frankie Stevens. Well no Frankie, I know it's been cold, but I found myself in the South Island this past weekend, Hanmer Springs to be exact, and in short, it was amazing.

Lulu, Nic and I drove down after a short flight on a Soundsair plane that was last used to rescue Indiana Jones from the savages in The Raiders of The Lost Ark. But it did its job, as did the rental car, and we all met in Hamner shortly after nightfall. Matt and Wendy were there, Jon too, and once we'd all found a bed had a drink and lit the fire, we set about the enjoyable business of catching up.

That of course took hours, and the next morning we were all a little bleary eyed, but could still see well enough to take in just how spectacular Hanmer was by day. It was far nicer than I imagined, a quaint little town dwarfed by a majestic backdrop of snowy mountains that were just begging to get lost in. So we gave it our best shot. We drove up the road signposted 'chains only!' and 'slow! horses' and pretty soon, having negotiated a road fit for a goat we found ourselves in warm sunshine, high on a plateau surrounded by the whitest, brightest snow I'd ever seen. It was breathtaking, and rates highly on my list of amazing sights 2004.

As does the chick in the Kermit the Frog T-shirt, but for different reasons. Imagine, if you will there I was, trying my hardest to sink a putt playing Wild West themed mini-golf, and there's Kermit staring at me with that inane open-mouthed grin. Now I'm not exactly Gianni Versace, and I cannot blame her for my 6 over par 8 on the third, but Kermit!? Where do you even find a Kermit T-shirt these days? Odder still the fact that on the back, emblazoned green on black were the letters KERMIT! as if by chance you were confused as to which particular celebrity talking frog was on the front.
'Oh I see, it's Kermit, I get it. Okay, cool."
The others voted the woman in the super-taper ribbed jeans (yes, that's ribbed, not ripped) with the shit kicker boots, spray-on figure hugging shirt, key buckle and fanny pack with worst dresser, but for me, Kermit took the cake. It may not be easy being green, but I'd hazard a guess that life's a shitload easier when you're not wearing a Kermit the frog T-shirt.

For the record I came second at mini putt, but it had grown a little tedious by the end. Lucky then that Hamner was no less spectacular to look at, and as the sun fell behind the mountains the sky was lit up in ever changing streaks of blue and pink. Matt and I stood on the porch shooting the breeze until it was dark then went inside to continue the enjoyable business of catching up.

Our decision to save the thermal pools until early Sunday morning paid dividends by the fact they were not crawling with kids and pissing teenagers. Instead there were just the right amount of people wallowing around for an early morning dip. And if anyone was there disturbing the peace, then it was us as we played an epic game of eye spy. Which has to be the most frustrating game in the whole wide world. Something beginning with C indeed.

Soon enough it was time to go. We cleaned up the house, packed our cars and went out for lunch where we moped around in the afterglow of the hot pools. I looked at my watch and wished that home wasn't so far away, which I suppose is similar to wishing we could stay in Hamner, which, bad T-shirts aside, wouldn't be too bad an idea. Thank you all for a great weekend.


Hey hey! Ho, what happened to the snowball? asks Frankie Stevens. Well Frankie, the solid ball of ice whizzed past Wendy's nose, missed it by a couple of inches and exploded like a lightbulb dropped on the motorway. And you know what? Looking back I'm pleased it did. Because whether it was the company, the location or just the joy of acting like a five year old it was the best snowball fight. Ever.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Where'd you go?
- Blur

Fear not, just having a few days off to compose my thoughts, water my plant and enjoy the rain. And save up $500 for a Rod Stewart ticket. Back soon.

Friday, August 27, 2004

I wanna be the fish
I like the way he swims
- Marilyn Manson

Perhaps I'll have to retract one of my posts from last week, because suddenly, the Olympics are fun! I got back in just in time to watch Hamish Carter win the triathlon, Bevan Docherty win silver and goddamn it, there was damn near a tear in my eye as I heard the national anthem. Either that or some fat from the burgers I was frying. It was pretty emotional stuff. So I kept watching, and it got stranger and stranger. I happened across what looked like horse dancing. You've probably all seen it before, but I've never seen a horse move like that, well, actually I have, but he was being chased by an angry bull. But anyhow, it was kind of weird, kind of cool, but over all kind of ...why? Image Hosted by ImageShack.us Image Hosted by ImageShack.us Synchronised swimming, different sport, same question. I've never seen anyone move like that, let alone two, well, actually I have, but they were being chased by a tuna. Where's this post going? Who knows, better stop soon though. Have a good weekend.

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

Together we will find our destiny
Together we will search
All those years, looking
All those years, pointless
Why do I say it was pointless
Looking for it with you
I will give you the reason
My destiny...is you...
- Avril Lavigne

I donned my black T shirt and ran down to Lambton Quay when I heard the news. I couldn't believe it, why had no-one told me that this was happening in Wellington? There was no way I could miss this; Beyonce, Kelly, and that other chick no-one remembers gigging in Wellington! But what a fool I felt when I was confronted by not 6000 swaying R'nB fans but the sight of 6000 losers! I'd been duped! It was the Destiny Church, not Destiny's Child. Goddamn.

Still, I stuck around to see what all the fuss was about, and what a lot of fuss it was. I haven't seen that many black T-shirts since a Tool concert in 2002, and at least that was good music. All I heard yesterday was 'Enough is Enough' chanted over and over again. I can see what they were going for, kind of like an 'Eggs is eggs!' thing, but it needs to be a little more catchy. Perhaps The Pet Shop Boys could help with the jingle, Holly Johnson could rework the lyric and the Village People could choreograph the march. Imagine.

There's a bit in 'Rattle & Hum' where Bono, in one of his messianic crowd pleasing speeches hisses 'The God I believe in isn't short of cash, mister". It's a great line, and it was swimming around in my head as I watched the legions make their way down the road. But hold on! That's all wrong! Bono? Bono begone! Cash is king in this kingdom, and so are family values. We won't tell you exactly what those values are, or whose family we're talking about, but can't you get it through your thick skulls that this is about family values??? How wrong I have been! And if Bono's got a messiah complex, he sure could learn a lot from the lizard king at the head of the march.

So, from what I could tell, the whole Destiny Church march boiled down to two things: family values and exercise. Exercise? You betcha! As M suggested, ideally you need an offensive sandwich board in each hand to get the full exercise benefit, but if none are to hand, yelling 'Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve!' while stomping your feet on the ground should be the way to go. Either way, you'll have to be fit enough to keep up with your pimp evangelist as you blindly follow him off the cliff like a biblical herd of swine.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Tina's doing her dance
Jon's looking for romance
Paul's getting down on the floor
While Hannah's screaming out for more (ooh)
Wanna see Bradley swing
Wanna see Rachel do her thing
Then we got Jo, she's got the flow
Get ready everybody 'cos here we go (woah)
S Club
There ain't no party like an S Club party, hey ho!
- S Club 7



While probably not as deliriously pleasurable as an S Club party, my Hot August Night flat warming certainly was a lot of fun. So thanks pals, for making it such a great night - the recipe for Chuxpunch is below. It was great to use my gaff for a party, and apart from a few 'will anyone turn up?' nerves, the night went without a hitch. Though I did become slightly concerned by the music volume at one point, but after a while the Chuxpunch began to work its peculiar magic and that became less and less of a concern.

We drank 'til late and all was good with the world. I retired to bed around two. The following morning I excused myself from my six lady friends and went into the lounge. 'Come back to bed Chuck', they whispered in unison, falling over themselves as they reached toward my trailing dressing gown cord. Tempting as that was, I had to survey the damage, and surprisingly, apart from looking like a bottle bank on Boxing Day, everything seemed to be pretty much in its place. I came back in shaking my head 'Well ladies, I'll be damned, it looks like we got away with it' - but they were nowhere to be seen. Was it all some crazy dream? Well if it were, it was a good one. Anyhow, the only slight mishap was a small stain on a sofa cushion, which I fixed by throwing it in the wash. It got rid of the stain, but shrunk the covering by about a quarter, so I now have slightly uneven sofa cushions. Great if any Hobbits pop by - welcome Pippin! - but a little odd looking otherwise.

The clean up was painless, though I was concerned that my landlord may pay a visit at any minute. He lives upstairs, and if anyone was to benefit from the pleasure obtained from Bob Sinclair's Champs Elysees album at one in the morning, it was him. He didn't knock on the door, but as I was walking around the corner carrying a huge sack of clanging bottles, there he was. I felt my guts turn over, but realised there was no getting out of it. It was time to face the music.
Ah, he said, how did the flat warming go?
Great! Yeah really good, hope we didn't keep you up.
What was that?
I said I hope we didn't keep you up.
Not at all, I didn't hear a thing.
The joys of a hearing impaired landlord cannot be overrated.

Chuxpunch

1 cup rum
1 cup port
1 cup creme de cassis
1 cup Royal Cup or Pimms
500 mls orange juice
500 mls dark grape juice
500 mls apple and boysenberry juice
500 mls water
Halved lemons and tamarillos
Eye of newt and toe of frog, wool of bat and tongue of dog (optional)

Friday, August 20, 2004

Love is a contact sport
You gotta move in tight
If you wanna do it right, here I am
Love is a contact sport
You gotta act untamed
If you wanna play the game
So grab my hand and.... slam!
-Whitney Houston

Well I tried. But same as last time. The Olympics bore me. Higher? ho hum, Further? whatever, Faster? fageddabowdit. There was a great ESPN promo a few years ago that highlighted about twenty golden moments in sport during a 60 second spot. No voice over, no graphics, just amazing clips, and all it said at the end was 'You'd better watch, because it might happen' - but man, with these Olympics I've tried watching but it just ain't happening. I end up watching odd sports that I didn't know existed with competitors from countries I'd never heard of, commented on by our very own curiously named commentators - Lavina Good anyone?

Not that I've watched a whole lot but for me the undoubted highlight was when the New Zealand women’s rowing pair ended up in the drink. I don't say that to be cruel, I've been thrown out of the odd boat in my time, but their sheer determination to get back in and finish the race was something to behold. Actually now I write about it I think I may enjoyed it far more than I should have, but that probably has more to do with my longstanding mermaid fetish (imagine half girl, half fish!) than what was actually on screen. Oh well, they’re in the finals now, I may just have to watch.

Anyhow last night I tried a different approach. I muted the television, opened a bottle of wine and put on an Aerosmith record, which remarkably made me feel a lot better, or made me feel remarkably better, or at the very least made the swimming a hell of a lot more rock 'n roll. It also got me thinking how much better the Olympics would be if they were a little bit more rock n' roll. While you could argue that Marion Jones has more in common with Courtney Love than you'd like to think, wouldn't it be great if real rock 'n rollers played a part. They obviously couldn't compete, but may I suggest that in Beijing 2008 they at least be allowed to officiate? Imagine Phil Spector firing the 100 metres starting gun, Slash refereeing the hockey (man you are so offside it aint funny) and that dude from Poison with the eye shadow could sing 'Unskinny Bop' while umpiring discus. All right!
And so dribbles out my 100th post.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us Image Hosted by ImageShack.us Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Storm warning, feels like a heavy rain
Winds on the coast tonight
We may get tossed tonight
Storm warning, he made it pretty plain
He’s fallin’ for another,
found a new lover
(and he won’t be back again)
- Bonnie Raitt

I'm worried about Cabbage. Nikau seems to be holding his own and Mr. Pine's seen it a thousand times before, but Cabbage could be in serious trouble here. He's dipping to the left, he's trying to reach the ropes, he's not keeping his arms up - defend yourself - the referee should really call this off, Cabbage is taking a beating out there, ah come on throw in the towel, this is painful to watch - he's getting pummeled - someone do something!
I talk not of the NZ Olympic boxing team, rather of the trees outside my window who, as I write, are being lashed from side to side by a mean southerly. Maybe it's because Cabbage is closer, but he certainly seems to be bearing the brunt of the storm. I hope he has a strong root system, or at least like my friend Mike, and indiscriminate one, either way, he'll need it today, this really is Wahine weather. I can hear sirens in the distance, it's pretty wild out there, hope everyone's okay. It's damn freezing too. The kind of weather Captain Oates would enjoy walking in. So cold indeed it prevented me from going to quiz night last night. That's how cold it is. Be strong Cabbage, be strong.
Hey, seeing it's a sad Wednesday how about a poem?. I actually went looking for one by Robert Frost that begins 'Tree at my window, window tree', but I couldn't find it, instead I found this cheery little number, that suits perfectly such a miserable day.

Bereft

Where had I heard this wind before
Change like this to a deeper roar?
What would it take my standing there for,
Holding open a restive door,
Looking down hill to a frothy shore?
Summer was past and day was past.
Sombre clouds in the west were massed.
Out in the porch's sagging floor,
Leaves got up in a coil and hissed,
Blindly struck at my knee and missed.
Something sinister in the tone
Told me my secret must be known:
Word I was in the house alone
Somehow must have gotten abroad,
Word I was in my life alone,
Word I had no one left but God.

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