Word of the day


Quiddity –  the essence or nature of something; petty or trifling distinction; quibble.

Thursday’s questions


1.Who said: “”Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.”?

2. What is a nematode?

3.  Name the poet who wrote the following lines and the poem from which they come:

Let us go then, you and I,

When the evening is spread out against the


Like a patient etherised upon a table;

4. In which country is Ephesus?

5. Vancouver and Alberta are in which states?

Memo to self don’t compose quiz questions late at night when overtired.

5. was supposed to be: in which provinces are Vancouver and Calgary?

Pharming for farmaceuticals


Sir Peter Gluckman says New Zealand is better placed  than other countries to develop health enhancing foods but we are behind in research.

Pharming and the development of farmaceuticals – food as medicine or with health enhancing properties has huge potential, especially in Asia.

We have had some successes with manuka honey and, while it’s not food, merino is a natural, farmed product which is used for compression bandages by Encircle.

But we have a long way to go to realise the potential for farmaceuticals from New Zealand produce.



Taking the long way home


My farmer and I have a similar tolerance for travelling – about four weeks.

Having left home on July 1 and had a wonderful time in the USA and Canada we were quite happy to be heading home on Monday.

The weather had other ideas. We arrived at Auckland to the news snow had closed Chirstchurch Airport and the earliest we could get there would be today.

But they could get us to Wellington and as we had a meeting there yesterday we took that option. My farmer is heading home from there today & I’m taking the longer route via Auckland for another meeting.

Fingers crossed we’ll both get back, and that unlike Roarprawn, our luggage will be with us.

What really matters


Political tragics get excited about the little things but what really matters to voters are the biggies: the economy, education, health and security.

That shows in the latest Fairfacts Fairfax Media poll: Most people prefer National’s economic plan.

Labour could change it’s leader but unless it changes it’s plan it won’t make much difference.

July 28 in history


On July 28:

1364  Battle of Cascina.


1540 Thomas Cromwell was executed at the order of Henry VIII on charges of treason.

1540  Henry VIII married his fifth wife, Catherine Howard.

1609 Bermuda was first settled by survivors of the English ship Sea Venture en route to Virginia.

1794 Maximilien Robespierre was executed by guillotine.

1809 Peninsular War: Battle of Talavera: Sir Arthur Wellesley’s British, Portuguese and Spanish army defeated a French force under Joseph Bonaparte.

Battle of Talavera map.jpg

1821  José de San Martín declared the independence of Peru from Spain.

1844 Gerard Manley Hopkins, English poet, was born (d. 1889).

1864  American Civil War: Battle of Ezra Church: Confederate troops made a third unsuccessful attempt to drive Union forces from Atlanta, Georgia.


1865  Welsh settlers arrived at Chubut in Argentina.

1866 Beatrix Potter, English author, was born (d. 1943).

1868  The 14th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States was passed, establishing African-American citizenship and guaranteeing due process of law.

1879 Lucy Burns, American suffragist, was born (d. 1966)

1893 The third massive suffrage petition was presented to Parliament in three years, this one was signed by nearly 32,000 women − almost a quarter of the entire adult European female population of New Zealand.

Women's suffrage petition presented

1901 Rudy Vallee, American entertainer, was born (d. 1986).

1902 Karl Popper, Austrian-born philosopher, was born (d. 1994).

1907 Earl Tupper, American inventor (tupperware) was born(d. 1983).

1909 Malcolm Lowry, English novelist, was born (d. 1957).

1914 World War I: Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia after Serbia rejects the conditions of an ultimatum sent by Austria on July 23 following the assassination of Archduke Francis Ferdinand.

1929 Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, First Lady of the United States, was born(d. 1994).

1935 First flight of the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress.

1936 Garfield Sobers, Barbadian West Indies cricketer, was born.

1942   Soviet leader Joseph Stalin issued Order No. 227 in response to alarming German advances into the Soviet Union. Under the order all those who retreated or otherwise left their positions without orders to do so were to be immediately executed.

Soviet postage stamp with the famous phrase “Not a step back”.

1943 : Operation Gomorrah: The British bombed Hamburg causing a firestorm that killed 42,000 German civilians.

1943   Richard Wright, English musician, was born (Pink Floyd) (d. 2008).

1945 Jim Davis, American cartoonist, was born.

Garfieldand friends.png

1945  A U.S. Army B-25 bomber crashed into the 79th floor of the Empire State Building killing 14 and injuring 26.

1948 Gerald Casale, American musician and director (founding member of Devo), was born.

1948 The Metropolitan Police Flying Squad foiled a bullion robbery in the “Battle of London Airport”.

1949 Peter Doyle, Australian singer (The New Seekers), was born (d. 2001).

Beg steal or borrow.jpg

1955 The Union Mundial pro Interlingua was founded at the first Interlingua congress in Tours, France.

1957 Heavy rain and a mudslide in Isahaya, western Kyūshū, Japan, killed 992.

1965 Vietnam War: U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson announced his order to increase the number of United States troops in South Vietnam from 75,000 to 125,000.

1973  Summer Jam at Watkins Glen: 600,000 people attended a rock festival at the Watkins Glen International Raceway.

1976  The Tangshan earthquake measuring between 7.8 and 8.2 moment magnitude flattened Tangshan, China, killing 242,769 and injuring 164,851.

1996  Kennewick Man, the remains of a prehistoric man, was discovered near Kennewick, Washington.

2001 Australian Ian Thorpe became the first swimmer to win six gold medals at a single World Championships.

Ian Thorpe with a smile.jpg

2002  Nine coal miners trapped in the flooded Quecreek Mine in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, were rescued after 77 hours underground.

2005 The Provisional Irish Republican Army called an end to its thirty year long armed campaign in Northern Ireland.

2005  Tornadoes touched down in a residential areas in south Birmingham & Coventry causing £4,000,000 worth of damages and injuring 39 people.

2008  The historic Grand Pier in Weston-super-Mare burned down for the second time in 80 years.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia

%d bloggers like this: