You’ll Never Walk Alone


Another one for Oscar Hammerstein II’s birthday.

Ol Man River


Oscar Hammerstein II was born on this day in 1895.

Monday’s quiz


1. Which country won the first football world cup in 1930 and who were they playing?

2. What are the three most common magnetic metals.

3. Who said: “Patience serves as a protection against wrongs as clothes do against cold. For if you put on more clothes as the cold increases, it will have no power to hurt you. So in like manner you must grow in patience when you meet with great wrongs, and they will then be powerless to vex your mind.”?

4. Gephyrophobia is a fear of what?

5.What does vox. pop. stand for and what does it mean?

Open season on dairying


It’s open season on irrigation and dairying.

At Bowalley Road Chris Trotter waxes lyrical about drought-stricken landscapes and mourns the conversion from sheep and crop farming to dairying.

When I was growing up the hills and paddocks of North Otago were the colour of a lion’s hide. The constant easterly blowing inland off the sea kept them dry and brown through most of the year. It was mixed farming country: wheat and barely on the flats; sheep on the hills.

Not any more.

The last time I travelled along the coast road between Oamaru and Waianakarua I was astounded to see the countryside had changed colour. Its once tawny coat was now a vivid green. The sheep were gone and everywhere I looked I saw cows, cows, cows.

There has been a big expansion of irrigation since Chris was a boy, but most of it is in the Waitaki, Waiareka and Kakanui Valleys. There is little irrigation on the paddocks along the coast road. If the pastures were green most of that would be due to recent rain.

At Pundit Claire Browning laments grass stains on the Mackenzie:

. . .  the burnished Mackenzie hills and basins are turning poison green. 

I haven’t seen any irrigation on the Mackenzie hills, they’re generally too steep so again if they were green it would have been because of rain.

 As for the flats, some of us see green not as poison which kills but something which is productive and life giving.

 And Robert Guyton seems to be concerned because one of the reasons Fonterra gives for supporting a power upgrade in Southland is that milk would have to be dumped if there was an outage.

“Fonterra’s submission says the upgrade to the power grid is necessary to protect against the potential environmental impact of dumping milk during a power outage”

That’s a statement of fact. Cows can’t turn milk on and off. If they’re not milked at regular times they will be in agony and susceptible to mastitis. Once the milk is harvested it can be stored for a short time before being taken for processing. But if a power outage held up processing there would be no other option but to dump the milk.
The company is just being open about the risks it sees. That has to be better than saying nothing until there’s an outage and milk has to be dumped.
The rapid expansion of dairying has resulted in environmental problems but farmers, and regional councils, are addressing these issues.
Criticism of  any particular decline in water quality or other environmental degredation is valid. Opposition to irrigation and dairying in general is a point of view based more on nostalgia and emotion than fact.

España 0 – Holanda 0 UPDATE: España 1 – Holanda 0


Glimpses of World Cup games have confirmed my conviction that you have to know a lot more about sport than I do to appreciate a game in which the fulltime score is a nil-all draw and the best performances are the Hollywoods.

Update with two mintues to go : Spain got a goal: Spain 1 – Netherlands 0.

Update: España ha ganado la Copa del Mundo.

El País, Spain’s major newspaper, says:

Directo: España campeona del mundo

El 11 de julio es ya un día histórico en el deporte nacional. España ha ganado su primer Mundial. Un golazo de Iniesta a cuatro minutos del final la prórroga ha dado la victoria. Ha sido una final agónica, con oportunidades por ambos bandos y jugada con mucha dureza por Holanda.

Spain world champion

The 11 of July is already a historic day in national sport. Spain has won its first World Cup.  A goal by Iniesta four minutes from the final extension has givent he victory. It has been an agonising final with opportunities for both teams and played with much toughness by the Netherlands.

Sorry could you say that again


Apropos of banning smoking in prisons as a health measure for staff, how long is it going to take before someone works out that bar and restaurant staff are exposed to unacceptable levels of noise?

If any of our employees are working with tractors, chain saws or anything else which makes a loud noise we’re required to provide ear protection for them.

If we didn’t OSH would be down on us. But music in bars is often far louder than farm machinery yet staff there have no protection at all.

Even without music, noise levels in some bars, restaurants and cafes are often well above comfort level thanks to modern architecture and design which likes hard surfaces and spurns the soft furnishings which help to absorb some of the sounds.

It can’t be good for the staff’s hearing and it’s not ideal for patrons either.

There’s a limit to how many times you can say, sorry, could you say that again.  After a while I resort to  smiling and nodding over dinner and hoping that’s an appropriate response to a conversation not clearly heard  because the background noise drowns out what’s being said.

July 12 in history


On July 12:

1191  Saladin’s garrison surrendered to Conrad of Montferrat, ending the two-year siege of Acre.

Siege of Acre.jpg

1543 King Henry VIII  married his sixth and last wife, Catherine Parr at Hampton Court Palace.

1562 Fray Diego de Landa, acting Bishop of Yucatan, burned the sacred books of the Maya.


1580 Ostrog Bible, the first printed Bible in a Slavic language, was published.


1690  Battle of the Boyne (Gregorian calendar) – The armies of William III defeated those of the former James II.


1691  Battle of Aughrim (Julian calendar) – The decisive victory of William’s forces in Ireland.

Aughrim cross.jpg

1730 Josiah Wedgwood, English potter, was born  (d. 1795).

1790  The Civil Constitution of the Clergy was passed in France by the National Constituent Assembly.


1804  Former United States Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton died after being shot in a duel.

1806  Sixteen German imperial states left the Holy Roman Empire and formed the Confederation of the Rhine.


1812  War of 1812: The United States invaded Canada at Windsor, Ontario.

1817 Henry David Thoreau, American writer and philosopher, was bron (d. 1862).

1854 George Eastman, American inventor, was born  (d. 1932).

1862 The Medal of Honor iwa authorised by the United States Congress.


1895 Buckminster Fuller, American architect, was born  (d. 1983).


1895 Oscar Hammerstein II, American lyricist, was born (d. 1960).

1917 Andrew Wyeth, American artist, was born (d. 2009).


1917  The Bisbee Deportation –  vigilantes kidnapped and deported nearly 1,300 striking miners and others from Bisbee, Arizona.

1918  The Japanese Imperial Navy battle ship Kawachi blew up at Shunan, killing at least 621.

1920   The Soviet–Lithuanian Peace Treaty was signed. Soviet Russia recognized independent Lithuania.


1932  Hedley Verity established a first-class record by taking all ten wickets for only ten runs against Nottinghamshire on a pitch affected by a storm.

1933 Donald E. Westlake, American author, was born.

1943   World War II: Battle of Prokhorovka – German and Soviet  forces engaged in largest tank engagement of all time.


1937 Bill Cosby, American comedian and actor, was born.

1943 Christine McVie, British singer, musician, and songwriter (Fleetwood Mac), was born.


1947 Gareth Edwards, Welsh rugby union footballer, was born.

Gareth Edwards.jpg

1950 Eric Carr, American drummer (Kiss), was born  (d. 1991).

1951 Cheryl Ladd, American actress, was born.

1960  Orlyonok, the main Young Pioneer camp of the Russian SFSR, was founded.


1961  Pune floodseddue to failure of Khadakvasala and Panshet dams. Half of Pune was submerged. More than 100,000 families dislocated and death tally exceeded 2000.

1962  The Rolling Stones performed their first ever concert, at the Marquee Club in London.

1967 The Newark riots began in Newark, New Jersey.

1975 São Tomé and Príncipe declared independence from Portugal.

Flag Coat of arms

1979  The island nation of Kiribati became independent from Great Britain.

1979  Disco Demolition Night at Comiskey Park Chicago.

2006  Hezbollah initiated Operation True Promise.

Tyre air strike.jpg

Sourced from Wikipedia & NZ History Online

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