Word of the day


Bibacious – overly fond or addicted to drinking.

Thursday’s quiz


1. Where did you used to go for summer holidays when you were a child?

2. Where do you go now?

3. Name three things you wouldn’t choose to holiday without.

4. Where would you suggest tourists eat if visiting your home  town/region?

5.  If you could choose any time of year to have a holiday when would it be?

Seeing what you want to see


The reaction to Chris Trotter’s  The Incredible Lightness of Being John Key is a telling illustration of how we see what we want to see.

Those of us on the right, like Kiwiblog, saw the positives while on the left people who’ve responded with comments and Deborah’s post at In A Strangeland  show the negatives.

Like most of Chris’s works, it’s a masterful piece of writing which can be read in many ways. The reaction shows that most of us who are politically aligned tend to have our prejudices confirmed in what we see, hear and experience.

That is why the political centre is so crowded.

That’s where most of the swinging voters are. Gaining their support is less difficult than trying to change the minds of people whose allegiance is confirmed or those whose views tend more towards the outer reaches of the political spectrum.

Guide book in your phone – yes please


A Dunedin company has developed technology to turn smartphones into mobile tourist information guides.

Smartphone applications represented the most exciting possibilities for the fast moving tourism industry since the introduction of maps and guidebooks, AA Tourism online general manager Roger Slater said.

At the forefront of this technology was Dunedin company iVisit, which has spent nearly a year creating the smartphone application XplrNZ.

The iPhone application, which will be available on Android smartphones early next year, features interactive maps of New Zealand and an accommodation search and booking system.

Social media also offered the chance for travellers to offer their own tips and reviews of places they had visited, iVisit chief executive Pierre-Emmanuel Perruchot de La Bussiere (25) said.

“While not everyone has smartphones, this is certainly changing,” he said.

The free application used GPS and cellphone positioning to ascertain area-specific information and the ability to offer special deals for that locality.

More than 5000 AA Tourism clients were listed on the application, which cost in the “tens of thousands” to set up, but would be recouped in the first few years with more businesses paying to list their details, he said.

Guide books are good but not user-friendly. They are almost always weighty, deteriorate with use and can’t keep up to date with changes.

A smart phone application weighs nothing, won’t deteriorate and will be easily updated.

This time last year I had no idea what a smart phone application was – I wonder what we’ll be doing with our phones a year from now?

December 30 in history


On December 30:

39  Titus, Roman emperor was born  (d. 81).

Tito, testa in marmo da Pantelleria.jpg

1066 Granada massacre: A Muslim mob stormed the royal palace in Granada, crucified Jewish vizier Joseph ibn Naghrela and massacred most of the Jewish population of the city.

 1460  Wars of the Roses: Battle of Wakefield.

 Roses-Lancaster victory.svg

1835 Charles Darwin left New Zealand after a nine day visit.

Charles Darwin leaves NZ after 9-day visitThis red gurnard was collected by Charles Darwin when the Beagle visited the Bay of Islands.

Rudyard Kipling, English writer, Nobel laureate, was born (d. 1936).


1916 The last coronation in Hungary was performed for King Charles IV and Queen Zita.


1919 – Lincoln’s Inn in London admitted its first female bar student.

1922  Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was formed.

Flag Coat of arms

1924 Edwin Hubble announces the existence of other galaxies.

1927  The Ginza Line, the first subway line in Asia, opened in Tokyo, Japan.

 One of the original 1000 series cars.

1928 – Bo Diddley, American singer and musician, was born (d. 2008).

1931  Skeeter Davis, American singer, was born  (d. 2004) .

1937 Noel Paul Stookey, American folk singer (Peter, Paul & Mary), was born.

1940 California opened its first freeway the Arroyo Seco Parkway.


1942 – Michael Nesmith, American singer and musician (The Monkees) was born.


1944 King George II of Greece declared a regency, leaving the throne vacant.

1945  Davy Jones, English singer (The Monkees), was born.

1947 King Michael of Romania was forced to abdicate by the Soviet-backed Communist government of Romania.

1947 Jeff Lynne, English musician (ELO), was born.

1948  The Cole Porter Broadway musical, Kiss Me, Kate (1,077 performances), opened at the New Century Theatre and was the first show to win the Best Musical Tony Award.

Caucasian man in his thirties smiling and looking to the camera. He has a round face, full lips and large dark eyes, and his short dark hair is combed to the side. He is wearing a dark jacket, a white shirt and a black tie with white dots.

1950 Bjarne Stroustrup, Danish computer scientist, creator of C++, was born.

1953 The first ever NTSC colour television sets went on sale for about USD at $1,175 each from RCA.

RCA Logo

1959 Tracey Ullman, English actress and singer, was born.

Tracy Ullman 1990.jpg

1965  Ferdinand Marcos became President of the Philippines.

1975 Tiger Woods, American golfer, was born.

Tiger Woods drives by Allison.jpg

1993  Israel and the Vatican established diplomatic relations.

2004 A fire in the República Cromagnon nightclub in Buenos Aires, Argentina killed 194.

 Relatives of the deceased in the fire light candles in a public protest against the perceived lack of control by the government.

2005  Tropical Storm Zeta formed in the open Atlantic Ocean.

2006  Madrid Barajas International Airport was bombed.

Barajas overview1.jpg

2006 Deposed President of Iraq Saddam Hussein, convicted of the executions of 148 Iraqi Shiites, was executed.

2009 – The last roll of Kodachrome film was developed by Dwayne’s Photo, the only remaining Kodachrome processor at the time, concluding the film’s 74-year run as a photography icon.

Kodachrome box.JPG

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.

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