Word of the day


Palinoia – compulsive repetition of an act until it is perfect.

Do I need an iPad, is android better?


A visiting teenager had an iPad (the original model, not the new one).

I asked him to tell me why I needed one and he was a very good salesman.

He talked me through its features and convinced me I wanted one: it’s smaller and lighter than a notebook making it more convenient for travel; it could provide easier access to the internet for email, blogging and news;  being able to download books would reduce weight when travelling . . .

But want isn’t need and I had questions the teenager couldn’t answer.

The biggest of these is: what happens if you haven’t got an iPhone – can you use a t-stick or android phone to get internet access from an iPad?

I went to a shop and the salesman there wasn’t nearly as good as the teenager and couldn’t answer my questions either.

Then I started reading and found out there were Android alternatives to the iPad which might be better.

So, if I found I needed a tablet (and the jury is still out on that) which is better – iPad or Android?



Push  by David Gregory was  Tuesday Poem’s featured poem last week.

Offerings from other poets linked from the sidebar included:

Conversation Overheard on the Road to Salem by Laura Solomon

A Mothers Day Collage from Elizabeth Welsh

The Museum of Stones by Carolyn Forché

Love the Glove by Mary McCallum

Daughter dobs in drunk mother


As we age the parent-child relationship starts reversing and the offspring begin to look after the parents.

It’s not usually when both parties are this young:

An 18-year-old who dobbed in her allegedly drink-driving mother was a “life-saver”, police say.

The young woman was a passenger in a car being driven by her mother from Alexandra to Roxburgh on Friday night and was so concerned about her mother’s level of intoxication she persuaded her to stop the car, “bailed from the vehicle and contacted police”, acting Central Otago police sub-area commander Sergeant Ian Kerrisk said.

The driver, a 47-year-old Alexandra woman, was processed for drink-driving and recorded a breath-alcohol level of 928mcg.

The daughter did the right thing – for the sake of her mother, herself and others on the road, but it wouldn’t have been  easy to do it.

It’s not clear from the story if the daughter had a licence or if she’d been drinking too.

I’ve had several conversations with young people about whether or not they should learn to drive. My advice is that having a licence helps you be independent, gives you choices and makes you safer in situations like this.

Freedom camping a bit less free


Some much needed restraint will be placed on freedom campers will new laws and policy to better manage freedom camping announced by Environment Minister Nick Smith and Conservation Minister Kate Wilkinson:

“Freedom camping is an important part of our tourism industry and great Kiwi lifestyle but we cannot tolerate irresponsible campers spoiling our most iconic areas with human waste and litter,” Dr Smith said.

“The number of freedom campers has doubled over the past decade to 110,000 international visitors and more than 40,000 New Zealanders. The existing system where each of our 67 districts has its own bylaws is not working for the responsible freedom camper wanting to do the right thing or for councils wanting to protect their local environment.”

A new Freedom Camping Bill will be introduced to Parliament this month that will enable councils to determine where camping is allowed, where it is restricted to campervans with self-containment, and where it is prohibited. The Department of Conservation will be able to make similar rules on the reserves it manages. There will be nationally consistent signage and practical enforcement provisions. A website will be provided outlining where people can and cannot camp nationally.

“We need some national consistency because most freedom campers are unaware of what district they are in one day to the next, but we also want to protect the rights of local communities to decide where freedom camping is to be allowed. We also want to encourage self-contained campervans by having restricted areas that don’t have toilets, as the most serious problems arise from freedom camping without sanitary facilities,” Dr Smith said.

Irresponsible freedom campers are no longer only a problem in remote country areas. Wayside stops on main roads and urban streets are also being used by people without self-contained loos.

The new law will provide for a $200 instant fine for illegal camping that may be imposed on the camper or the vehicle. New regulations will require campervan hire companies to record and disclose details so fines can be enforced. Fines up to $10,000 may be imposed by courts on a successful prosecution for illegally discharging a campervan’s sewage.

Instant fines for relatively minor breaches are far better than charges which lead to court, especially for people from overseas. Being able to impose the fine on a vehicle will put more onus on companies which hire them to educate visitors about where they may and may not camp.

Restrictions will add to costs for visitors but user-pays is better than having the costs of irresponsible freedom campers fall on us and our environment.

No Maori Party in Nat govt no Maori seats?


Hone Harawira has criticised the Maori Party for being in coalition with National, even though he was a member of it at the time. He’s also criticising the party for contemplating entering a coalition with National again after the election.

One of National’s campaign policies was the abolition of the Maori Seats. If it hadn’t been in coalition with the Maori Party it would have followed through and done that. But this was one of the policies National gave way on during coalition negotiations.

 As far as I know it is still National policy to get rid of the seats. It’s definitely Act policy.

If there’s a National led government after this year’s election with Act as a coalition partner and without the Maori Party it’s a safe bet the seats will go.

May 16 in history


On May 16:

1204  Baldwin IX, Count of Flanders was crowned as the first Emperor of the Latin Empire.


1527 The Florentines drove out the Medici for a second time and Florence re-established itself as a republic.

1532  Sir Thomas More resigned as Lord Chancellor of England.


1568 Mary, Queen of Scots, fled to England.


1770 14-year old Marie Antoinette married 15-year-old Louis-Auguste.


1771  The Battle of Alamance between local militia and a group of rebels called “The Regulators.

1777 Lachlan McIntosh and Button Gwinnett shot each other during a duel.


1811  Peninsular War – The allies Spain, Portugal and Britain, defeated the French at the Battle of Albuera.


1815  The Governor of New South Wales, Lachlan Macquarie, officially named the town of Blackheath in the upper Blue Mountains.


1822 Greek War of Independence: The Turks captured the Greek town of Souli.

1836  Edgar Allan Poe married his 13-year-old cousin Virginia.


1843  The first major wagon train heading for the Pacific Northwest set out on the Oregon Trail with one thousand pioneers from Elm Grove, Missouri.


1866 The U.S. Congress eliminated the half dime coin and replaces it with the five cent piece, or nickel.

1866  Charles Elmer Hires invented root beer.


1868  President Andrew Johnson was acquitted in his impeachment trial by one vote in the United States Senate.


1874  A flood on the Mill River in Massachusetts destroyed much of four villages and kills 139 people.

1877  May 16, 1877 political crisis in France.

1905 Henry Fonda, American actor, was born (d. 1982).

1910 The United States Congress authorised the creation of the United States Bureau of Mines.

1914  The first ever Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup final wass played. Brooklyn Field Club defeated Brooklyn Celtic 2-1.


1916 Ephraim Katzir, 4th President of Israel, was born (d. 2009.

1918 The Sedition Act of 1918 was passed by the U.S. Congress, making criticism of the government an imprisonable offense.

1919 Liberace, American pianist,was born (d. 1987).

1919 A naval Curtiss aircraft NC-4 commanded by Albert Cushing Read left Trepassey, Newfoundland, for Lisbon via the Azores on the first transatlantic flight.

Albert Cushing Read.jpg

1920   Pope Benedict XV canonised Joan of Arc.


1929 The first Academy Awards were handed out.

1943  Holocaust: The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising ended.

Stroop Report - Warsaw Ghetto Uprising 06.jpg

1948  Chaim Weizmann was elected the first President of Israel.


1951 Christian Lacroix, French fashion designer, was born.


1951  The first regularly scheduled transatlantic flights began between John F Kennedy International Airport  and Heathrow operated by El Al Israel Airlines.

1953 Pierce Brosnan, Irish actor, was born.

Smiling man with short, tousled hair, wearing white shirt open at collar, and black jacket.

1960 Nikita Khrushchev demanded an apology from U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower for U-2 spy plane flights over the Soviet Union, ending a Big Four summit in Paris.

1960 Theodore Maiman operated the first optical laser, at Hughes Research Laboratories in Malibu.

1965 The Campbell Soup Company introduced SpaghettiOs under its Franco-American brand.

Campbell Soup Company logo.svg

1966 Janet Jackson, American singer, was born.

1966 The Communist Party of China issued the ‘May 16 Notice‘, marking the beginning of the Cultural Revolution.

1969 Venera program: Venera 5, a Soviet spaceprobe, landed on Venus.

Venera 5.jpg

1970 Gabriela Sabatini, Argentine tennis player, was born.


1970 Danielle Spencer, Australian singer and actress, was born.


1974 Josip Broz Tito was re-elected president of Yugoslavia.


1975  India annexed Sikkim after the mountain state holds a referendum in which the popular vote was in favour of merging with India.


1975  Junko Tabei became the first woman to reach the summit of Mount Everest.
1982 The All Whites won 2-0 against Australia  on the way to the World Cup in Spain.

All Whites beat Australia on road to Spain

1983 Sudan People’s Liberation Army/Movement rebelled against the Sudanese government.


1986  The Seville Statement on Violence was adopted by an international meeting of scientists, convened by the Spanish National Commission for UNESCO.

1988 A report by United States’ Surgeon General C. Everett Koop stated that the addictive properties of nicotine were similar to those of heroin and cocaine.

1992  STS-49: Space Shuttle Endeavour lands safely after a successful maiden voyage.

Space Shuttle Endeavour

2003  Casablanca terrorist attacks: 33 civilians killed and more than 100 people injured.

2004 The Day of Mourning at Bykivnia forest, just outside of Kiev to commemorate that here during 1930s and early 1940s communist bolsheviks executed over 100,000 Ukrainian civilians.

2005 Kuwait permitted women’s suffrage in a 35-23 National Assembly vote.

  • Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia

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