Marchers told to cover up

October 27, 2008

Marching New Zealand has told masters marchers to swap short skirts for trousers because they’re more age appropriate.

The girls from a Palmerston North masters marching team are feeling hemmed in after being told to ditch their skirts and don more “age appropriate” trousers.


“It’s sort of like, ‘Oh these old girls, we’d better cover them up!”‘ team member Frances O’Donnell, 46, said.

Glenbrae Marching Team and other masters teams were ordered by Marching NZ to wear trousers this marching season.

“Yes trousers do cover a multitude of sins, but you have to be able to see your leg action. It’s what marching is all about,” Miss O’Donnell said.

The masters grade is for those 30 years old and over, with the emphasis on fun.

I’ve never understood the attraction of this hobby but we all march to the beat of a different drum and if women choose to strut round in short skirts for fun I wouldn’t want to stand in their way.

Grow or spend

October 27, 2008

Do you want the next government to concentrate on growth or spending?

National and Labour both made anouncements on policy today which might help you decide.

National announced it will spend $8.6 billion on new infrastructure projects over the next six years.

Labour announced it will make establishing a free to air Pacific Island television  channel a priority.

One policy is costed and will promote economic growth the other is uncosted, feel good waffle.

McCain & Obama duel by dance

October 27, 2008

Democracy moves from the ballot box to the dance floor.

Dancing changed Rodney Hide’s life so maybe it could settle the election for John McCain and Barack Obama.

White gold loses lustre

October 27, 2008

Dairy prices last season were at record highs, well above the long term average so a drop isn’ t unexpected.

However, it is concerning that international prices for butter, chedder, skim and whole milk are heading back to 2006 levels.

Cicero  found these charts from which show the drops in international dairy prices:

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The fall in the value of the dollar will compensate for some of the fall in prices, but that’s a two edge sword because a lower dollar increases the prices of two of the biggest budget items – fuel and fertiliser.

The other concern for farmers is that while income will drop the costs of production never go down as far or as fast as product prices.

There is also a wider concern for the New Zealand economy. Dairy produce accounts for around quarter of our exports so a significant drop in returns for butter, milk and cheese has a significant impact on the national income and balance of payments.

Gore shepherd perfect woman

October 27, 2008

Perseverance paid off for Gore Shepherd Jaimee MCMeeken who claimed the Perfect Woman  title on her fourth attempt.

Ms McMeeken has entered the competition for four years in a row, last year finishing second, and was determined to keep coming back until she won the trophy.

She achieved that yesterday after two days of intense competition between 30 contestants, with Wanaka shepherd Michelle Osbourne and Wanaka office worker Alice Ferguson second and third.

. . . Now she had won, she would not be back as a competitor, Ms McMeeken said.

She had loved coming back each year and had learned being patient and not rushing was the key to success.

“Every year I’ve learned different things and how to get better and better.

“It’s not about being butch, it’s about femininity . . . Even in speaking, it’s about taking a deep breath. And I never look at what everyone else is doing,” she said.

Among the tests the contestants faced was gutting and skinning a possum.

Proceeds from the contest, held annually in Wanaka, go to the Canlive Trust which helps people with cancer.

Melamine in Chinese eggs

October 27, 2008

Excessive levels of melamine have been found in eggs from China for sale in Hong Kong.

It is thought the melamine comes from feed given to the hens.

12 more sleeps . . .

October 27, 2008

. . . until the election and the average of polls still has a National led government – just.

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