Monday, 30 January 2006

It's a conspiracy I tells ya!

Is it me or is the world conspiring against my catching cabs everywhere.

Last year saw petrol prices head ever skyward, and with them the per km rates of every cab company in Wellington.

This year we have the government thinking about how they can force biofuels on New Zealand car owners. Now I'll admit to getting a little turned on by the smell of fried food, but I really don't need every loser cruiser in the city belching this stuff through the city streets. Its bad enough they have their own lanes of death marked green for I will run you down if you are in my way. Now assuming the boffins work out how to produce, process, distribute, and blend this great evil into the domestic fuel supply, I can't help but wonder how all this fuss will only serve to drive petrol prices even higher. Yes the core supply of biodiesel and bioethanol will come as a byproduct of meat and dairy processing operations but all the handling required to get it into the fuel supply will only serve to make it so very unsustainable in the absence of shameful government subsidies. And to think all this will be done to achieve little more then 5% reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. What the hell are we doing this for people? Political posturing? Jesus wept!!!

But wait, there's always more...

The Motor Trade Association is calling for what seem to be import restrictions on used vehicles, as if poor people make poor decisions when they buy used vehicles instead of brand, spanking new penis extensions.

Similarly the Green Party is calling for vehicle emission standards and price incentives for more efficient vehicles. I really struggle to understand the logic in denying people basic mobility for the sake of negligible environmental gains.

Can I get a Jesus wept, because I'm not sure how much more of this the poor guy can take. The dude doesn't need a tissue. He needs an end to self-interested dogooderdom.

“Look, you can see her playing with her pussy!”

This was by all accounts a rather fantastic weekend even if the Pedant thought the service at Wellington’s bastion of culinary excellence to be overdone.

Much of Saturday day was spent with Brown Sugar in the thriving metropolis of Wainuiomata tying up loose ends from last weekend’s festivities and enjoying the warm hospitality of one’s extended family. Not wanting to get caught up in revealing too much of my past, but my aunties in Wainui have always been benevolent if sometimes fearsome pillars of matriarchal strength. I’ve loved and adored them ever since we came back from Canada and although our respective families have since followed their own paths its nice to see some things never change. Almost like instinct, out came the rampant pisstaking, the girlish giggling and embarrassment of food.

The banana cake I was offered deserves a special mention here people. Unbelievably good is the only way I can describe it. Actually, no I can describe it in more detail. The cake itself was light and airy and topped with a not-too-sweet chocolate icing and held together by a cream layer that didn’t overpower the mouth in lipid ugliness. Brown Sugar and I brought a few pieces home with us but suffice to say they didn’t survive long. I’d post a pxt of this magnificent example of baking but the hefty chunk I had hewn for my own enjoyment had left the rest of it looking slightly less than pretty.

Saturday night began in that burgeoning bastion of suburbiana that is Churton Park. As one that has only ventured to the landfill of Churton Park’s undoubted cornucopia of sights to see, there was a novelty element to the evening’s occasion. To be honest we used to say “landfill” when referring to Churton Park. That only changed when Mr Between-You-Me-And-The-Gate-Post moved on to greener pastures.

Anywho, the occasion that brought about this great odyssey was that the Banana was hosting a Chinese New Year-slash-housewarming at her McMansion in the more recently developed backblocks of Churton Park.

I’m sorry but Churton Park has quite a Children of the Corn-meets-Stepford Wives feel to it. Every roof looks exactly the same but for colour. Every house has a garish Sky TV aerial spoiling an otherwise bland roof profile. Catflaps on back doors seem very in right now, as does concrete stained and shaped to look like stone tiling. Don’t even get me started on the straight from the UK countryside brick house jutting from the top of the drive almost like a gloved fist. Someone who is yet to receive a nom de plume aptly described that particular house in a more than audible tone with the timeless phrase “Fuck! I’d top myself if I lived in a place like that! Fuck!” I won’t go into how odd it was to see every third house sport a grotesque two-storey front doorway. Oh and the pillars! Woah! No need to wonder where all the pillars went from all those temple ruins in Greece and Italy. They can be found in Churton Park.

But seriously folks, the bare hills of brown and towering power pylons stretching across the horizon notwithstanding, the cul-de-sac we found ourselves in was quite the colonial outpost of empire.

As for festivities, they were more than ably handled by a number of familiar faces from… well… we need not be quite so specific. Suffice to say the conversations were convivial (if sometimes work-centric), smiles unforced, laughs almost shameful, jokes decidedly less than clean and food tasty and hassle-free in that Asian kinda way. SPFW came away with a less than flattering photo of me that I can only hope she keeps to herself. EKG came away with a bottle of free plonk. I came away with 30 cents in a small red envelope and the unfamiliar yet all the same pleasant sensation of attending a party where I wasn’t the caterer.

Kudos to the Banana for a great night!

My night didn’t end with Churton Park but that is as far as this post is going to go.

As for Sunday day, it was spent for the main part in the kitchen preparing a personal favourite. Musakhan is a Middle Eastern dish of spicy Moroccan chicken with spinach, chickpeas, pinenuts and pistachio wrapped in mountain bread is served with mint yoghurt and constitutes a meal in itself. Although quite involved, it is quite an easy and straightforward dish to prepare. If Sunday dinner was anything to go by then someone will be enjoying a very different Monday lunch. Fingers crossed she likes it as much as I did making it.

If anything the occasion allowed for Dad and I to enter into heated negotiations over how many of the pistachios he was allowed to eat in exchange for de-shelling the rest for the dish. I’ve never seen a grown man get so stroppy over half a handful of pistachio nuts but all in all he did a great job.

Friday, 27 January 2006

You should drink green tea!

It seems my coke consumption is considered almost unhealthy by some of the more recent womenfolk. I have long assumed that it went largely unnoticed. Such outpourings of concern for my wellbeing have in turn given birth to well-meaning suggestions I substitute the carbonated caffeine-ridden goodness that is coke for the quite unremarkable beverage that is green tea.

It may be chockfull of healthy anti-oxidants but my years in the employ of a garden centre has no doubt left me less than enthusiastic towards the consumption of a beverage derived from camellia plants.

Don’t get me wrong. I like my tea. I just prefer it to be better than Bell.

The best tea I’ve come across was a Chinese jasmine bud of the $400 an ounce variety. Deliriously fragrant and delicately flavoured, this tea was the paragon of calm and comfort.

Failing that I’d settle for black tea picked by the soft-worn hands of Sinhalese highlanders bathed in the soft glow of a full moon, dried in the empire-inherited manner, and infused with the very best oil from the very finest bergamot oranges ever imagined.

I know it sounds a lot like the Cuban cigar rolled on the thighs of virgins working on the Havana promenade under a full moon sky, but hey… dreams are free.

Thankfully Fauchon have a special blend of earl grey that more than satisfies the palate.

But I digress.

Green tea? Puh-lease!

I’ll stick with coke thanks. Stomach ulcers and bowel ruptures are but a small price to pay.

Keeping secrets

I’ve come upon some rather good news but have been told to keep mum on the whole thing.

Stink… ow!

And here I thought we like to hear secrets so we have something we can then sneak off and tell to other people.

I guess I’ll just sit here and fester until beer o’clock.

It ain't coming soon enough.

"Soulwax opened with e talkin - that was cool..."

The lovely EKG kindly snapped snapped this pic of Soulwax in action at the Big Day Out for me. I know the pic looks rather dark but Soulwa are the spiffy men in black at the back.


By all accounts they were really good. I really wish I'd gone.

Anyone want to come see them in Australia?

Oh and I thought the chick's head at the bottom of the photo belonged to EKG but apparently that isn't possible. She took the photo herself.

Do my thumbs look fat in this?

Yesterday was pay day and I think we all know what that means.

Yes.

I went shopping.

Braving oppressive heat and sweat-like-a-rapist mugginess I ventured forth in search of worthy purchases at World on Victoria Street. No sooner should I find myself avoiding the do-gooder vibes of the organic cafe on the corner than I am transfixed by large white signs in the display window festooned with the magical "S" word in bright red letters. It was quite the deer-in-headlights moment.

Darting in with suitably restrained enthusiasm I immediately made a bee-line for the bags that have captured my attention on previous encounters. With one's heart beat ever quickening, it wasn't until I spied a 30% discount on the Howard bag that the kid-in-the-candy-shop look fell across my face. Thankfully my composure was quickly restored before wandering among the other wares the store had to offer at oh so tempting discounts.

This is the Howard bag. I love it! I have no real use for it given its inappropriateness in the hands of someone with my butch and manly bearing but it is nice to have it all the same.

You wish you had cuffs manly enough to pull off cufflinks as bitchin' as these!


And it is nice to have things. If not for the stuff of life we would be unattractive, unadorned people of simple existence and nil taste. In other words a presbyterian existence of blandness and denial. Just ask the pedant. As one raised in the ways of the presbyterian she would know better than any of us the gray existence I speak of.

*shivers*

So, it was with the greater interest of your happiness in mind that I popped next door to Marvel Menswear and bought a pair of 1950s Auckland Racing Club cufflinks. I think they look rather spesh even if they do come out blurry in the pxt. Oh dear god, my fingers look so fat!


Pondering purchasing potential slightly further afield I soon found myself wandering through Cuba Mall before popping into the sometimes impressive Iko Iko. I say 'sometimes' because Iko Iko awkwardly straddle the divide that is modern decor-meets-kitschy trinkets and as a result only periodically stock must-buy items. Thankfully yesterday was a good day and in the spirit of gung hay fat choi and the banana's housewarming coinciding tomorrow, there was before me the ideal purchase. Think magic 8-ball meets Chinese takeaway and you'll have the smart cookie.


This is what it looks like sans butch and manly thumbs.

With the banana seemingly lacking the patience to wait until her housewarming, it wasn't long before the smart cookie was governing important life decisions. Wander past her door and you'll likely hear cryptic Confucian utterances.

Yes, yesterday was a good day to shop.

As for today, well...

Tonight seems as good a night as any to use the $50 bar tab I picked up from the Feathers Public House on (not so surprisingly) Featherston Street.

My thanks to Uncle Timmy aka Carporn for racking up a fair bit on the points card before bestowing it on my humble self. Now if only I could find the damned thing to make a start on the next bar tab.

Is it beer o'clock yet?

Tuesday, 24 January 2006

"He's a self-made man in love with his own creator"

That my friends was today's pearl from the Nige.

No he didn't mean me.

He meant someone else who shall remain nameless.

No he didn't mean you either.

I would auntie but I’m allergic to tea towels

The long holiday weekend was to be honest rather choice. Resplendent with youse, ka pai and kia ora aplenty it was quite the cuzzybro affair. I’ve never laughed so much and had my face so sore. Good times with good people eating good food and laughing ourselves senseless. Quite the example of a good time being had by all.

That said I’m not sure I can handle hangi, wild pork, puha or dumplings for quite a while yet. Talk about overeating.

I’m over doing the dishes too. Growing up that was always left to the young ones. It seems nowadays one is never too young to be told to do the dishes.

I'd post a few pics of the hordes of Harongas, Halberts and Farmers but that would be sharing far too much.

After all every boy needs his secrets, and I have plenty.

Thursday, 19 January 2006

That's exactly the kind of homophobic attitude I've come to expect in this village!

Well it seems we can now add talking dolls to the Little Britain collection with miniature versions of "I'm the only gay in this village!" Daffyd, Vicky "No but yeah but no but yeah but no but yeah" Pollard and Emily "I'm a lady" Howard.

They look rather good for novelty items and don't seem to suffer at all from being mass-produced likenesses of real people. Well real in the sense they are actual people playing characters. Just not not real in the sense of cartoon characters or GI Joes.

Anywho, everyone's favourite aussie mag Frankie is offering the chance for the less fortunate to win one of five giveaway packs that include talking dolls. All one simply has to do is email giveaways@frankie.com.au with your address details.

Nice one bruvva!

Good morning houseplants... it's wakeup time

With the always lovely EKG in more northern climes for the Big Day Out and other adventures, thoughts in Wellington have turned to matters musical in nature.

The dearth of new CDs of a standard that warrants the effort of adding them to ye olde iPod is somewhat disturbing.

Just as an aside, has anyone else noticed the front plate of their iPod becoming loose with ever-mounting usage? More curious than anything else.

Anywho, Sin City is out on DVD albeit sans decent extras and Willy Wonka is similarly available in a 2-disc edition that suggests over-compensation for what is surely a disappointing foray into cinema. I haven't seen the film myself but any thought of a favourable experience were quickly dashed upon seeing the trailer for what must surely be a monstrous descration of the very example of wistful childrens movies.

But that wasn't my point.

My point is that while has a steady stream of cinematic offerings to the ever-hungry DVD player the same cannot unfortunately be said for CDs.

Which makes the rather impressive lineup at the Big Day Out all the more... well... impressive.

If not for family obligation, I'd be in Auckland right now acclimatising myself to the prospect of shunning sunlight in the Boiler Room all day. With Soulwax, 2 Many DJs, LCD Soundsystem, Shapeshifter and Kid Kenobe among others it ought to be a blast of breaks, beats and samples. Granted it sucks that Mylo (of Destroy Rock and Roll fame) had to pull out but it seems Concord Dawn have more than ably stepped into the breach.

To be honest I'm not sure Kings of Leon, Franz Ferdinand or the *yawns* White Stripes are worth the effort of travelling to Auckland and Iggy Pop seems to be suffering the same fate as James Brown: still hitting the stages well beyond their better years.

Not cool.

I don't care if Iggy Pop does have the abs of a much younger man or is one of the biggest men in entertainment. He's in his 60s and I'm sorry but saggy old man skin is not a good look. The gaunt face with deep hollows where msot other people would have jowls is similarly disturbing, but at least more understandable given the man's age.

So, in the absence of worthy distractions at every good music store and family obligations getting in the way of getting on up to Auckland for the Big Day Out, I have resigned myself to rehashing old favourites on the ol' iPod.

How unwhorelike is that? 'Very' is the answer you are looking for.

Geeks like lists and since my musical tastes have been driven by them moreso than more mainstream avenues (I notice few if any realistic recommendations from my modest yet loyal readership) here are the 10 CDs that have been on highest rotation thus far this year...

As Seen On Radio Soulwax Part 2, 2 Many DJs
Antics, Interpol
The Understanding, Royksopp
No Wow, The Kills
Confessions On A Dance Floor, Madonna
Some of My Best Friends Are DJs, Kid Koala
Kasabian, Kasabian
Risotto, Fluke
Senor Smoke, Electric Six
Back Room, The Editors

I swear Madonna is nought but an aberration from the Christmas / New Years period.

Don't judge me!

I AM NOT AN ANIMAL!!!

Please tell me you know which film that came from. No really. Do.

Oh and if anyone can name the song the title of this post is taken from I would be very impressed. Not quite impressed enough to bear your children or donate a kidney, but impressed all the same.

Wednesday, 18 January 2006

Post something new whore

Well… who am I to deny a woman that which she desires. Here begins today's edition of show-and-tell...

The one where Floridita’s almost flopped
My triumphal return to Floridita’s last Friday was a somewhat contradictory affair. Despite a new menu and amended wine list absent of all I had come to treat as treasured favourites, I had a fantastic time all things considered.

The grilled haloumi with orzo salad was very savoury but delivered in a disappointingly small serving. Normally the safe option at any cafĂ© or restaurant, the haloumi proved to be one of oddly few options on Floridita’s decidedly breakfast-centric menu. Funnily enough the suggestion of lunch does not conjure images of eggs done six ways or exotic cereal no matter how fancy they may be described.

Thankfully the company more than made up for what would otherwise have been a lacklustre experience. More about him at a later time or date. Maybe. We’ll see.

Oh and just so you guys know, below is what a real grilled haloumi salad should look like. I had this at Astoria. God damn it was good.


The one where we bought too much
Saturday proved quite the successful shopping sojourn as wingman to a certain someone of the mates persuasion. Meeting at Astoria for lunch (because one ought not to go whoring on an empty stomach – growling stomachs give the impression one lacks disposable income – not a good look) he arrived with an embarrassment of shopping bags sagging from both arms. All of a sudden I felt like the sober guy that’s arrived at a party where everyone is three sheets to the wind. Not cool.

Thankfully we soon found ourselves perusing and then purchasing delightful Spanish red at wine merchants Rumbles. The guy behind the counter was fairly hard case and more than ably recommended some fantastic wine similar in palate to similarly fantastic wines enjoyed on previous occasions. Yes it was the Duque de Sevilla but hey it is a great drop for a similarly enjoyable price.

With bottles in hand we soon found ourselves stalking the pavement of Lambton Quay before someone had the impromptu impulse to visit the Jewellery Arts Studio up Cable Car Lane. To be honest the detour was rather inspired, if I do say so myself. Where else would one encounter a complete stranger who freely discusses everything from the imminent of good friends of hers in the UK, the prison practice of using a hose to ease barbed wire inside the rectum of less popular inmates, and the many and varied ways in which her career and financial situation sucked seriously cellulite-riddled ass. Yes that was a rhetorical question. When my partner in crime and I weren’t pissing ourselves laughing we were staring at each other wondering just what madness we had walked into.

Oh if only I’d taken a photo of the parents hurrying their young children out of the store while the barbed wire discussion was in full swing. Priceless. Much like the story we can now share with the grandkids, should some of us make it through the rather insurmountable barrier that is breeding.


The one where he said no
Moving on towards the more than decent winelist at Hummingbird we soon found ourselves wandering into World on Victoria St. The workplace wife once txted me that they had bags with Howard on them. Howard is a moose but then you already knew that.

Anywho, at the risk of coming across as one with a bag fetish I must admit to soon finding myself captivated by the bags in the window display. Momentarily disoriented between purchasing the ugly bag with the gorgeous moose print on it or the gorgeous bag with a similarly sumptuous polar bear print, I of course went with the more expensive option.

And here it is…

I’ll give you a moment to bask in its magnificence.

Now, my partner in crime has since disappeared into the menswear section to try on a knit vest and to be honest it looked fantastic on him. Mind you he did have the figure for it but still. He so should have bought it. But he didn’t. I’m still suffering from the shock of seeing it go back on the rack.

That said, it did mean I was able to spy some especially tacky cufflinks that look seriously bitchin’. Only $79 they have that faux gold look to them with a really cheap looking plastic gemstone in the middle. It looks straight out of a Shaw Brothers film and I love them. Thankfully they have since become mine. Now I just need a shirt to wear them with. Easily remedied.


The one where Santa came twice in one day
It wasn’t until we’d arrived at Hummingbird that I realised the lovely wee thing that served us at World had slipped a little extra into my shopping bag. Now before you get excited it was only a postcard but what a postcard it was.

I’m sure we weren’t camping it up anywhere near enough to be outed but then she does work in a fashion store so no doubt knows gay men almost as well as we do. But still. Quite the surprise even if a tad licentious.

The comment printed on the back of the card? Santa came out me tongue first.

Classy.

Thursday, 12 January 2006

I hate the way you love

But I do love this drop of spanish red. The 1998 Duque De Sevilla is but $25 a bottle at Rumbles yet easily worth twice that with the downing of every glass.

Oh and the bottle looks rather spesh too.

Go buy it!!! By the caseload! NOW!!! In the same way as a good violin needs to be played, so too does good wine need to be drunk.

Anti-discrimination gone wrong?


Madame Fifi is a crossdressing libran who enjoys chatting up men who pretend she isn't a man. Depressed Disco Santa Bear may be a lonely bear but I don't think he swings that way.

Tuesday, 10 January 2006

Taking things slightly more seriously

I've just received an email on the gay grapevine exhorting me to ring up WestpacTrust's sponsorship manager and demand they reconsider their sponsorship and naming rights to the caketin.

All the fuss seems to have generated from WestpacTrust Stadium CEO David Gray making the throwaway and probably out of context comment that similar behaviour to that of a same-sex kiss on the big screen would be considered inappropriate in a family-friendly stadium. The response seems to be considered by some in the less-than-straight community as "offensive and blatantly homophobic".

Which is odd because I don't think same-sex kisses are the only thing they'd have a problem broadcasting on the big screen. Presumably the same would apply to straight couples pash-raping each other in the cheap seats. I can understand how cautious stadium management wouldn't consider that to be wholesome family entertainment.

And for all the righteously indignant cry foul on the slightest evidence of heresy and evil, I really don't see how people ringing up WestpacTrust's sponsorship manager will change the policies of a stadium they don't manage or govern when ticket sales and event attendance would mean so much more to those that wrote the rulebook.

Honestly, such AMATEURS!!!

And yet for all the hot air being expelled and fists being waved, the one thing that pisses me off more than the journalistic sloppiness of the frontpage affair is that I find myself in the position of defending the stadium's right to have killjoy policies. Now that REALLY pisses me off.

I like to think I'm a fairly laid-back guy, but dogooders are such cunts in the way they force me to adopt positions I'd rather not. No rude comments from the straight seats please. The world is too organic and complex to ever be simple enough for black and white distinctions of good and evil and the sooner they understand this the better.

I'm sorry but...
WHAT... THE... FUCK!!!!!

Ok, I'm done now.

Where's my wine?

Ooh! There it is!

A kiss is just a kiss

Well the non-story of the day seems to involve a friendly pash between two women and the big screen that caught it during a slow patch during the cricket on Sunday. Who’da thunk it? Not I. And yet here it is on the front page of today’s Dominion Post.

It seems the innocent incident meant a humourless security guard felt the need to threaten the pair with eviction before the threat was soon then backed up with an apology from the CEO of the regional cricket association for the guard’s behaviour.

Surely that would be the end of that. Oh if only…

It seems some reporter thought they’d ask the CEO of the caketin what he thought and wouldn’t you know that security staff would be asked to intervene if anyone tried the same thing down here in the bastion of civilisation that is Wellington.

With same-sex pashing described as inappropriate at a family stadium, cue the requisite cries of disgust and disbelief. Lo and behold, ordinary gay person and Cabinet Minister Chris Carter found the caketin’s policy surprising and unfair with lashings of discrimination against same-sex couples.

Talk about slow news days!

Speaking personally, I don’t care if people want to pash at the cricket or any other sports fixture. The real issue should be whether or not they’re hot enough to warrant being broadcast on the big screen. Consider it a bonus for all the straight boys and not-so-straight gals that get off on that kinda thing.

Can I get an "hmmm lesbians"?

Classic quote of the day: I have nothing against gay people, but, you know, I prefer men

Once more into the office dear friends

Well the year has begun again and it doesn't seem to look too different from the last one. Early days yet I know but still. Maybe I just need to rearrange the furniture in my office.

Anywho, most of what happened over the Christmas / New Years period is none of your business unless I can be bothered telling you on the phone or in person. One does not need all their laundry aired in such a public forum.

Suffice to say good times were had by all. So may they continue.

God damn its muggy today!

Just like a bought one

The bar on tacky souvenirs has been raised quite significantly with this offering from the Pedant on her stopover in Dubai in transit between our fair shores and those of the UK and France over the Christmas / New Years period.

To those unused to such things, this is an azan clock or clock that goes off when it is time for the faithful to pray towards Mecca. All you have to do is push down the plastic gold dome on the left and when the time is right the whole thing lights up and out screeches the call to prayer.

It's fantastic and I love it! You should too...