Word of the day


Hinchinarfer – a grumpy woman; gruff-voiced woman, with shrieking sisterhood tendencies.

Blue trumps green


The Highlanders’ board has seen sense.

The southern men will be wearing predominantly blue uniforms next season with the controversial green left for away games.

The board still wants to “freshen the brand” but will wait until after a consultation process undertaken by the University of Otago.

It shouldn’t take much consultation to tell the board that if they want fans to show their true colours then the team should be true to their colours.

Sex by judicial decree no joke


The story of a woman successfully suing her ex-husband because his libido was too low for her liking will probably be treated as a joke.

It’s not funny when you go beyond the headline:

But the strains of work and illness prevented Jean-Louis from fulfilling his matrimonial duties, his advocate pleaded.

Announcing her decision the judge quoted the French civil and penal code, which requires both parties in a marriage to respect ‘lifelong community’ requiring them by law to have sexual relations.

Sex by judicial decree isn’t funny.

It probably would be even less likely to be regarded as amusing  if it was the man who complained about the woman but it’s no more a joke because it was the husband’s low libido which prompted the case rather than the wife’s.

Non-consensual sex is abuse regardless of who’s demanding and who’s reluctant.

A difference in libido would cause problems in a relationship but they would be best sorted out by counselling rather than a court.

Which century is this?


The third comment left on David Farrar’s Stuff column starts:

Diversity is important but women need to understand that the majority of hard, business decisions are necessarily made by men, and this applies to Parliament as well.

There are several things I could say about that but it’s time I got back to the kitchen.



Getting excited about this year’s Rugby World Cup doesn’t mean I know much about its history.

I scored only 2/15 in the Herald’s 1987 RWC quiz.

My rugby trivia knowledge is sparse at the best of times and I don’t remember watching any games in the tournament.

That was the year our first son was born and died. It was also the year my farmer started digging us out of the ag-sag by supplying old ewes for the winter kill which required us to shear every couple of weeks.

When I look back on the winter all I remember is being in hospital with Tom or at home cooking for shearers or preparing food for someone else to give them when I was away.

This is a much easier and happier year and I’ll be going to at least two games – although that is absolutely no guarantee I’ll do any better in a quiz on the tournament in 24 years time.

Are we exctied yet #2?


A friend was on a flight which landed in Dunedin shortly before the plane carrying  the Pumas touched down last Thursday.

They were greeted by a large crowd and she said the excitement was infectious.

It wasn’t, however, a patch on the enthusiastic welcome the Tongan Rugby World Cup team got from their supporters in Auckland yesterday.

Keeping Stock has the video and I defy you to watch it without being moved.

The team is one of the underdogs but however they perform on the field, it will be difficult to beat the Tongan  fans who’ve shown us all how to get into the spirit of the occasion.

Too safe can be more dangerous


The crash which injured 35 children after the school bus they were on was rammed by a logging truck provides a compelling argument to back up Rural Women’s call for active signs on school buses.

I think those signs, reminding drivers to slow to 20 kilometres an hour when approaching and passing a slowing or stationary school bus, would be a good idea.

But we must be careful to keep a balance between making roads safer and making them so safe they become dangerous because drivers relax and stop taking responsibility.

No matter what is done to enhance safety, the responsibility to remain alert and prepared for the unexpected lies with drivers.

Discharge for being drunk and funny no laughing matter


Being drunk and funny should never excuse criminal behaviour yet that appears to be why a comedian was discharged without conviction after admitting sexually absuing his four-year-old daughter.

Judge Cunningham said the case was “extraordinary”.

“Indeed to have done something like this when the mother of the child, a mother I know would do anything to protect her child, was lying in bed.”

She said the consequences of a conviction would outweigh the gravity of the offence.

How much more grave than sexual abuse of a four-year-old can you get?

I am in full agreement with Barnados chief executive Murray Edridge who called the verdict  deeply concerning and should be offensive to any right-thinking New Zealander.

“Barnardos is very concerned that the judgement passed down on Friday 2 September will set a precedent. The verdict suggests that a person’s ability to get work in the future, and their ability to make people laugh, is more important than a child’s safety.

This man has come home drunk, committed an unacceptable sexual act on his daughter and has admitted doing so. Unbelievably, he faces no legal consequences for his actions. A discharge without conviction means there will be no record of his crime. He has previously been charged with unlawful sexual connection and escaped conviction in that case too.

 “It is very concerning to think that being talented and funny somehow excuses the inexcusable. I absolutely disagree with the Judge’s assertion that “the effects of a conviction outweighed the gravity of the offending”.

“These actions are not without impact. The mother and daughter were deeply traumatised by the drunken actions of this individual and have been receiving counselling.

Over the past weekend we have celebrated Fathers Day when we acknowledge and celebrate the importance and value of our Fathers and the role they play in keeping us safe. Sadly this was not the experience for this four-year-old.

“Child sexual abuse is a serious issue, with longitudinal studies showing that up to 20 percent of children in New Zealand experience sexual abuse and that abuse has long-term consequences.

“If we are going to change this, we need Police, the Social Services sector, the Judiciary and all New Zealanders to take abuses against children seriously. In this case it appears we have failed to do so,” concluded Mr. Edridge.

The man’s name has been permanently suppressed to protect his daughter but it is widely known.

A discharge without conviction for a charge this serious is no laughing matter. However,  even if the Crown doesn’t appeal the verdict, New Zealand is so small a place that it’s likely he will find it difficult to get work, in spite of the Judge’s decision.

September 6 in history


394  Battle of the Frigidus: The Christian Roman Emperor Theodosiu I defeated and killed the pagan usurper Eugenius and his Frankish magister militum Arbogast. 

1522 The Victoria, the only surviving ship of Ferdinand Magellan’s expedition, returned to Sanlúcar de Barrameda in Spain, becoming the first ship to circumnavigate the world. 

1620  The Pilgrims sailed from Plymouth on the Mayflower to settle in North America.


1628 Puritans settled Salem

1634 Thirty Years’ War: In the Battle of Nördlingen the Catholic Imperial army defeated Protestant armies of Sweden and Germany. 

1669 The siege of Candia ended with the Venetian fortress surrendering to the Ottomans.


1729 Moses Mendelssohn, German philosopher, was born (d. 1786).

1757 Marquis de Lafayette, French soldier and statesman, was born (d. 1834).


1781 The Battle of Groton Heights resulted a British victory.


1800 Catharine Beecher, American educator, was born (d. 1878). 

1847  Henry David Thoreau left Walden Pond and moved in with Ralph Waldo Emerson and his family. 

1860 Jane Addams, American social worker, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, was born (d. 1935).

1870  Louisa Ann Swain of Laramie, Wyoming became the first woman in the United States to cast a vote legally.

1885 Eastern Rumelia declared its union with Bulgaria

1888  Charles Turner became the first bowler to take 250 wickets in an English season.


1901 Anarchist Leon Czolgosz shot and fatally wounded US President William McKinley.

1919 Wilson Greatbatch, American inventor (cardiac pacemaker), was born.

1930 Argentine president Hipólito Yrigoyen was deposed in a military coup.

1937  Spanish Civil War: The start of the Battle of El Mazuco.

1939 World War II: The Battle of Barking Creek.

1940 King Carol II of Romania abdicated and was succeeded by his son Michael

1943 Roger Waters, British musician (Pink Floyd), was born.


1943 The Monterrey Institute of Technology, was founded in Monterrey, Mexico.


1948 New Zealand citizenship was established.

 New Zealand citizenship established

1948  Juliana became Queen of the Netherlands. 

1949 Allied military authorities relinquished control of former Nazi Germany assets back to German control.

1955 Istanbul Pogrom: Istanbul’s Greek and Armenian minority were the target of a government-sponsored pogrom.

1957 José Sócrates, Prime Minister of Portugal, was born.

1963 Alice Sebold, American novelist, was born.

1965  India retaliated following Pakistan’s failed Operation Grand Slam which resulted in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965

1966 The architect of Apartheid, Prime Minister Hendrik Verwoerd, was stabbed to death during a parliamentary meeting.


1968  Swaziland became independent.

1970 Two passenger jets bound from Europe to New York were simultaneously hijacked by Palestinian terrorist members of PFLP and taken to Dawson’s Field in Jordan.

1972  Munich Massacre: 9 Israeli athletes and a German policeman taken hostage at the Munich Olympic Games by the Palestinian “Black September” terrorist group died  at the hands of the kidnappers during a failed rescue attempt. 

1976   Soviet air force pilot Lt. Viktor Belenko landed a MiG-25 jet fighter on the island of Hokkaidō and requests political asylum in the United States.

1985  Midwest Express Airlines Flight 105, a Douglas DC-9 crashed just after takeoff from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, killing 31.

1986 In Istanbul, two terrorists from Abu Nidal’s organisation killed 22 and wounded six inside the Neve Shalom synagogue during Shabbat services.

1991 – The name Saint Petersburg was restored to Russia’s second largest city, which had been renamed Leningrad in 1924.

1997  Funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales  which was watched by a television audience of more than 2.5 billion. 

2008 – Turkish President Abdullah Gül attended an association football match in Armenia after an invitation by Armenian President Serzh Sarkisyan; he is the first Turkish head of state to visit the country.

Sourced from NZ History & Wikipedia

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