Word of the day


Cacaesthesia –  morbid sensation; abnormal dysfunctional sensations on the skin; such as numbness, tingling, prickling, or a burning or cutting pain; heightened sensitivity.



6/10 in the NZ Herald’s Maori Language quiz.

Bad grammar good sign


The advertisement said: Next time you need an electrician, why not get them to . . .

It’s bad grammar to have a plural pronoun in place of a singular noun but the bad grammar is a good sign.

A few years ago the advertisement would have used him  rather than them.  

That it doesn’t is a sign of progress indicating it’s no longer accepted that an electrician will automatically be a bloke.

Friday’s answers


Thursday’s questions were:

1.  Which novel opens:  “It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.” and who is the author?.

2. Who said: “Moderation is a fatal thing. Nothing succeeds like excess “?

3. What are malbec  and tempranillo?

4. In which ocean is Madagascar?

5. It’s feu in French,fuoco in Italian,  feugo fuego in Spanish and ahi  in Maori, what is it in English?

Points for answers:

Paul scored four with a bonus for wit.

Andrei wins an electronic bottle of wine from Mendoza for five right.

PDM got one with a bonus for being right last week.

David got three with a bonus for extra information and deduction (I think au feu means on the fire which is how they cook it).

Cadwallader got 4 1/2 (right book but forgot to put the author).

Adam got two and a bonus for correcting my typo. (Terra del Fuego is a family joke because when we were in Argentina my farmer said that instead of hasta luego – which is a casual farewell statement, litterally until later).

Like Pooh Bear’s friend Rabbit I’m having a busy day. I’m writing this a few hours before you’ll see it. If you answered after I wrote it you’ll have to award yourself points.

Answers follow the break:

Read the rest of this entry »



6/10 in the NZ Herald’s Maori Language Week quiz. 

Would have been 7 had I thought before clicking on the earth mother one.

Agribusiness leadership award nominees sought


Nominations have opened for the Rabobank Agribusiness Leadership Award which recognises achievement in, and contribution to, Australia and New Zealand’s food, beverage and agribusiness industries.

The annual award recognises excellence among the senior leaders of agribusiness and agri-related industries on both sides of the Tasman.

Past award winners include Yalumba Wine Company proprietor and managing director Robert Hill Smith, pastoralist and company director Nick Burton Taylor and Incitec Pivot chairman John Watson, while last year’s recipient was the director of CSIRO’s Food Futures National Research program Dr Bruce Lee.

Rabobank Australia & New Zealand CEO Thos Gieskes said the Rabobank Leadership Award was designed to recognise individuals in leadership roles who had made significant contribution to Australia and New Zealand’s vitally-important food and agribusiness industries.

“Good leadership is of course essential for success in business. The recipients of the Rabobank Leadership Award, however, go beyond this to display truly outstanding leadership not only of their businesses, but of the industry and often in the wider community,” he said.

Judges will be looking for someone who has made a significant achievement as a senior leader in building, rejuvenating, or expanding a business in the food, agribusiness or beverage sectors; who develops and communicates a clear vision and direction for sustainable growth and prosperity at both a corporate and industry level; and is regarded as an outstanding corporate citizen who demonstrates social commitment.

Nominations forms are here.

Did the Greens make them do it?


Trans Tasman explains Labour’s decision to introduce a capital gains tax:

. . . a CGT would almost certainly be one of the Green Party’s coalition requirements. John Key was quick to damn the new policy, saying a CGT would “crush everyday NZers.” But the real criticism lies in the actual mechanics of the tax, which as papers prepared for the Tax Working Group showed could raise if applied across-the-board at 30% to all property, shares, and farms around $3.8bn a year, but only after about 15 years.

Any suggestion the introduction of a 15% CGT, applied only to investment property, would immediately yield $4.5bn a year, roughly the revenue gap to be filled will be laughed off the hustings. While left-wing commentators have hailed the prospect of a CGT as “bold,” and a “circuit-breaker,” others are asking why politicians as astute as Helen Clark and Michael Cullen always kicked the idea of a CGT deep into touch.

Keeping Stock pointed out it’s not just former Labour MPs who didn’t support a CGT.

Did the Greens make them do it? Not directly.

But perhaps Labour is attempting to front-foot the issue rather than risk being seen to give the Greens such a major concession during coalition negotiations should they be in a position to form a government after the election.

Independence and aspiration vs dependence and envy


Trans Tasman sums up the difference between our two major parties:

National wants to lift incomes through faster economic growth and can only do so by creating the right environment, and incentives to do so: Labour wants to create a “fairer” society by taxing the rich, and redistributing the wealth to the poor and needy.

National’s policies will encourage independence and aspiration, Labour’s will foster dependence and envy.

It’s a pity Labour hasn’t learned we’ve got to earn money before we spend it – that’s why economic growth is so important.

Just like individuals and households, countries which spend money thay haven’t got go backwards.

July 8 in history


1099 First Crusade: 15,000 starving Christian soldiers marched in a religious procession around Jerusalem as its Muslim defenders looked on.

1283  War of the Sicilian Vespers: Battle of Malta

1497  Vasco da Gama set sail on first direct European voyage to India.

1579 Our Lady of Kazan, a holy icon of the Russian Orthodox Church, was discovered underground in the city of Kazan.


1663  Charles II of England granted John Clarke a Royal Charter to Rhode Island.


1680 The first confirmed tornado in America killed a servant at Cambridge, Massachusetts.

1709  Great Northern War: Battle of Poltava: Peter I of Russia defeated Charles XII of Sweden at Poltava, effectively ending Sweden’s role as a major power in Europe.

The Battle of Poltava by Denis Martens the Younger, painted 1726

1716  Great Northern War: Battle of Dynekilen.

1758  French forces held Fort Carillon against the British at Ticonderoga, New York.

The fort's configuration is described in detail below.

1760 French and Indian War: Battle of Restigouche – British defeated French forces in last naval battle in New France.

Le machault.jpg

1775  The Olive Branch Petition signed by the Continental Congress of the Thirteen Colonies.


1776  The Declaration of Independence was read aloud in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and the Liberty Bell was rung.

1822 Chippewas turned over huge tract of land in Ontario to the United Kingdom.


1838 Ferdinand von Zeppelin, German inventor, was born (d. 1917).


1839 John D. Rockefeller, American industrialist and philanthropist, was born (d. 1937).

1853  Commodore Perry sailed into Tokyo Bay.


1859  King Charles XV/Carl IV acceded to the throne of Sweden-Norway.


1864 Ikedaya Jiken: the Shinsengumi sabotaged the Choshu-han shishi’s planned attack on Kyoto, Japan at Ikedaya.

1874  The Mounties began their March West.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police.svg

1876  White supremacists killed five Black Republicans in Hamburg, SC.

1882 Percy Grainger, Australian composer, was born (d. 1961).

1889  The first issue of the Wall Street Journal was published.

Wall Street Journal 28April2008.jpg

1892  St. John’s, Newfoundland was devastated in the Great Fire of 1892.


1893 The New Zealand Racing Conference was formed to control the thoroughbred horseracing industry.

NZ Racing Conference established

1898 The shooting death of crime boss Soapy Smith released Skagway, Alaska from his iron grip.

1908 Nelson A. Rockefeller, 41st Vice President of the United States, was born (d. 1979).


1920 Godtfred Kirk Christiansen, Danish industrialist (Lego Group), was born (d. 1995).

The logo for Lego, and the Lego group.

1926 Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, Swiss-born psychiatrist, was born (d. 2004).

1932  The Dow Jones Industrial Average reached its lowest level of the Great Depression, bottoming out at 41.22.

1933 Marty Feldman, English comedian and actor, was born (d. 1982).

1948 The United States Air Force accepts its first female recruits into a programme called Women in the Air Force (WAF).


1960 Mal Meninga, Australian rugby league footballer, was born.

Mal Meninga (10 July 2008, Canberra).jpg

1960  Francis Gary Powers was charged with espionage resulting from his flight over the Soviet Union.


1961 Andrew Fletcher, English musician (Depeche Mode), was born.

1962 Ne Win besieged and dynamited the Ragoon University Student Union building to crash the Student Movement.

1965  Train robber Ronald Biggs escaped from Wandsworth Prison, London.

1966 King Mwambutsa IV Bangiriceng of Burundi was deposed by his son Prince Charles Ndizi.

Mwambutsa IV Bangiriceng of Burundi 

1928 Shane Howarth, New Zealand/Wales rugby player, was born.

1969 IBM CICS was made generally available for the 360 mainframe computer.

1970  Richard Nixon delivered a special congressional message enunciating Native American Self-Determination as official US Indian policy, leading to the Indian Self-Determination Act.

1977  The ashes of Ahn Eak-tai, a Korean conductor and the composer of the national anthem Aegukga, were transferred from the island of Majorca to the Korean National Cemetery.

1982 Assassination attempt against former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein in Dujail.


1982 – Senegalese Trotskyist political party LCT was legally recognised.

1992 Conference for Security and Co-operation in Europe created the office of High Commissioner on National Minorities.

1996 A man armed with a machete wounded three children and four adults at a primary school in Wolverhampton. Teacher Lisa Potts received the George medal for protecting her pupils, despite being severely injured.

1997 NATO invited the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland to join the alliance in 1999.

1999  Allen Lee Davis was executed by electric chair by the state of Florida, that state’s last use of the electric chair for capital punishment.

2003  Sudan Airways Flight 39, with 116 people on board, crashed in Sudan; the only survivor was a two-year-old boy who subsequently died as a result of his injuries.


Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia

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