NOT THE FRONT PAGE BUT
THE GOSSIP PAGE
There is a brilliant definition of news, though I apologise in advance to forgetting whom to attribute it to. "News is something, that someone, somewhere, doesn't want known. Everything else is advertising." We could say the same for gossip, witness the rise of the gossip magazines and televised infortainment.
Whatever definition you give it news/gossip/information is widely sought and avidly devoured. It's dissemination is one of the pillars of democracy for those who hoard information, for whatever mistaken idea, should be rejected by all fencers who believe a bout is a free and frank conversation between two equals - a conversation of the blades!
So this column encourages the spreading of information/news/gossip as long as it can pass the basic tests for slander - truth or reasonable personal belief!
If you have something to say about anything to do with fencing, earthquakes (since the Great Catastrophe of February 22, 2011, this page has been recording the trials and tribulations of the citizens of Christchurch in the rebuilding of their city.) or what is posted on this site then this is the place to say it.
You can engage blades by e-mail at: En guard!
Like Letters to the Editor, submissions should be concise, pertinent and may be subject to editing.
26/5/2013: Growing veges in public spaces in Swamp City is a great idea, but it is not new. Read about it in the nation’s top NEWSPAPER!
Rhubarb in Manawatu City, aka Palmerston NORTH.
Parsley in Rotorua.
Tomatoes and herbs in Palmy.
Wanganui is another place that grows veges in public spaces. Do you know of others??
Coming down ...
And somewhere in-between.
Now read about what's happening in the leafy Swamp City suburb in THE NATION'S TOP NEWSPAPER!
21/5/2013: ALL WE WANT ARE OUR LOCAL SHOPING CENTRES AND ROADS BACK NOT EXPENSIVE WHITE ELEPHANTS FOR PEOPLE THAT DON'T LIVE HERE!
Instead the suffering citizens of Swamp City will get a CONVENTION CENTRE and an ENCLOSED PLAYING FIELD. In fact reading our nation's top newspaper (click on the above) the last few weeks would lead you to believe that Swamp City is to be rebuilt for the tourists and to hell with the citizens.
New Brighton Bridge.
Did YOU watch Campbell Live last night?? Everybody in the local cafe was talking about it - bet Gerry and his Wastemakers are happy the EQCtruths blogger has been bought off?? Oh, you didn't know? Have a squizz HERE!
New Brighton Bridge.
Why can't the tourists come visit the Eastern Marches? I took a couple of friends from Nelson for a tour recently and they were appalled. Yes, they had watched Swamp City's suffering via television and yes they had come and inspected the Wasteland (the former central city) in person last year, but they had no inkling of what many of the local ratepayers and citizens were enduring out in the suburbs.
Roll on election time!
20/5/2013: Oh, someone that sounded like a former lawyer and National Party supporter, took offence to the suggestion on Friday that thousands of University of Canterbury graduates could be cheats.
He did get Prime Minister Muldoon's nickname correct though - PIGGY!
Still no response from former Labour Party supporters though.
17/5/2013: THERE ARE HUNDREDS IF NOT THOUSANDS OF UNIVERSITY CHEATS OUT THERE!
In the late 1960’s a young Firebrand stood on a table in the downstairs cafeteria in the Canterbury University Students’ Association building in central Christchurch, now part of the Arts Centre, and ranted on about the coming tide of “rice burners” his term for Asians, about to flood the country.
In that same cafeteria, which was eventually turned into a vegetarian restaurant, Dux de Lux, by Gillian when the university moved to Ilam and in the Upstairs Common Room, students freely acquired marked essays from students of the previous year and from which they could copy/incorporate ideas/chunks into their own essays. No money changed hands. Could that be called cheating? If so how many University of Canterbury cheats are out there?
Muldoon – the monetary maniac, and that was before the Rogernomics’ “advances” mentioned in Chris’ wee rant and with which that same Firebrand was involved with.
A Student Army 60's style!
Have a good weekend! And, sorry, the cfish for the first correct answer has already been gobbled.
16/5/2013: UNINTENDED HILARITY, MARKETING GENIUS OR, SOMETHING MORE SINISTER???
Sydenham residents and businesses have been moaning about the dust, smell and disgusting eye-sore generated by this criminal rubbish heap in the go-ahead central city area for years, but surely Mackers is not taking a tongue-in-cheek jab at our bureaucrats who let it happen??
Compare this pix with the one posted 12/12/2012 and then read the rant dated 21/12/2012 and make up YOUR mind!
A McSmelly instead of a McSpicy???
15/5/2013: SOME OF THE WASTELAND OPENED FOR VISITING YESTERDAY.
A Big Red bus with a handful of passeners crawled past, a couple of mums pushing baby carriages and the odd stunned individual walked through a tiny part of the Square. Up High Street it was much the same, quiet, ephemeral, almost funeral like except the mouldering body was three years old and and mostly gone.
Sayrah had opened more of the long-dead central city to mourners and gawpers in an effort to prepare citizens for a complete opening in June or July, three-and-a-half years after it was badly damaged in the September 2010 and February 2011 earthquakes and the frenzy of demolition, or deconstruction in bureaucratese, which followed.
Now many of the former 50,000 residents and workers can return, but as this blog has shown over the last couple of years, most of them have moved on leaving the former central city for dead.
All that remains is the wasteland populated by steel mesh fences and grumbling trucks and knock-it-downs .....
Grubbing around the Square. The grubby remains of the former Christchurch Anglican cathedral is left centre and the remains of The Bank of New Zealand building is on the right.
All that remains of a famous building on Manchester Street, near High Street, - a giant chocolate fish for the first person to name it.
A couple of views of a sad New Regent Street.
Oh, they want to bring the trams back as soon as possible.
Too close for comfort??
A new slant on greening the rubble. Coralie will appreciate it.
More to come!
14/5/2013: A BRIDGE TOO FAR FOR MANY MEN?
Our Elderly Former Railway Worker, now retired, is a fount of stories and a sharp observer of the human condition. For the last 15-years he has also been perambulating round the Heathcote River each morning, unless it is wet, and comes up with some pertinent observations. One is the dearth of males out walking. There is a surge just after each New Year, he says, dozens of plump and pot-gutted males obviously make a New Year resolution to lose weight and get fit, but four or five weeks later they have disappeared.
Another of his observations is this closed footbridge over the Heathcote River, between Riverlaw Terrace and Fifield Terrace near Ford Road, that has been closed since the Great Catastrophe yet still used by locals – see pic and rant for 8/9/2011 and the snowy footprints above.
It appears undamaged he observes. You be the judge.
Perhaps a sign, "you use this footbridge at your own peril", absolving the Christchurch City Council of any responsibility along with electronic gates at either end would be a cheap fix, but don't hold your breath as personal responsibility has been neutered by bureaucracy in Swamp City since the Great Catastrophe.
13/5/2013: RESULTS FROM THE WEEKEND'S CENTRAL FENCING CHAMPIONSHIPS IN WELLINGTON.
SABRE 1 Daniel KAHU, 2 Nicholas MERCER, 3= Bryan CLARK and Jerome LEVENEUR, 5 John CALCOTT, 6 Peter KIM, 7 Graham CONLON, 8 Xavier WATTS, 9 George STRATI, 10 Jaco FOURIE, 11 Gavin Thomas and 12 Kevin ASKEW.
EPEE 1 Andreas SESUN, 2 Bryan CLARK, 3= Felix BOYCE and Alex THOMAS, 5 Daniel KAHU, 6 Xavier WATTS, 7 Jaco FOURIE, 8 Charlotte DEWSNAP, 9 Gavin THOMAS, 10 Annick FENAUGHTY, 11 John CALLCOTT, 12 Grace CHRISTIE, 13 Nick COMER, 14 Katherine LITTLE, 15 Felicity BOYD, 16 Rosie GRAHAM, 17 Amy WILSON.
FOIL 1 Daniel KAHU, 2 Harry FORRESTER, 3= Felix BOYCE and Charlotte DEWSNAP, 5 George STRATI, 6 Alexander VANBRUT, 7 James HARWOOD, 8 Alex THOMAS, 9 Grace CHRISTIE, 10 John Calcott, 11 Isaac RUSHHOLME-COBB, 12 Nick COMER, 13 Daniela RAVERA, 14 Russell JOHNSON, 15 Bryan CLARK, 16 Nathanael WALKER-HALE, 17 Gavin THOMAS, 18 Luca YOUNG, 19 Johnathan CARRUTH, 20 Jason LOCKWOOD, 21 Amy WILSON, 22 Hazel LOCKWOOD, 23 Elizabeth LITTLE, 24 Gareth SMITH, 25 Katherine LITTLE.
To make up for the contretemps over results for the recent NZ U17 Sabre Championships, here's a pix of the eight finalists!
12/5/2013: And now for something completely different.
Look what they did to my sandwich Mum!
Only in Swamp City does your sami come locked in a cardboard box with a wee window so you can see the contents. Don't even ask about opening the beastly thing, for once you have attacked it with the supplied knife you find it .....
Wrapped in cling foil!
This new concept of cafe food control is no doubt because of the increasingly bureaucratic developments in our suffering city where commonsense went out the door in February 2011.
The cafe will remain nameless cos I want to go back as they do a mean cafe con leche.
8/5/2013: Today is VE Day!
No, not victory earthquake day, but Victory Europe day celebrating the end of a long war in Europe known as the Second World War.
Compare this shot to that of 1/9/2011 in the Archives.
The trouble with the Great Catastrophe of February 2011 it not only squished up all the swishy bits of Swamp City but the rocky and hilly bits as well, as this pic taken the other day, shows – are we caught between rocks and a swamp?
For overseas readers, the pix shows some of the cliff and hill damage near the estuary suburb of Sumner and was taken from the spit on Southshore where, strangely, the houses built on sandhills facing the sea are OK, but the ones facing the estuary are mostly Red Zoned and due for demolition, but you might not know that as all the propaganda has been about the Wasteland - the former city centre.
7/5/3013: Christchurch - Swamp to City.
Read this book and the squabbling over the rebuilding of the Christchurch Anglican cathedral and the former city centre and the people involved seem a bit stupid and petty.
Note the map, dated 1856, inside the back cover. Most of the present day Red Zone and other areas badly hit by liquefaction could be clearly worked out 155 years ago. The question is dear reader, is hind-sight always 20-20 vision? And who allowed folks to build there?? Could we have avoided the attack of the orange cones, like the one holding up the book Swamp to City?
After reading Swamp to City the writings of the Great Poet Dennis Glover, who wrote about the Anglican God Botherers: “..with unerring instinct they picked on the most miasmal part of the Canterbury Plains, bog, fog, and mud, and decided that they would pitch the high banner of the Church of England.”” have even more impact. (See posting for 4/10/2011 for more about the Great Poet and Swamp City.)
In fact with the decline in God Botherer numbers why rebuild the thing at all? Yes, it may have become an easily recognisable symbol of Christchurch, but a magnificent Town Hall for our Christchurch City Council bureaucrats could become the new symbol of the swampy city, a memorial to those that died and of more use to present-day citizens and ratepayers too.
But wait, rugby players might want to use it or, cricketers might want to put a fence round it, or unwashed central city denizens might want it for a swimming pool, a hotel, a landing site for helicopters bringing in rich tourists, a bicycle centre???
Thanks goodness the rebuild of the Wasteland, the former city centre, is decades away, if that, and all the propaganda spread by those with an axe to grind, so to speak, irrelevant and totally meaningless to around a third of the citizens in Swamp City – all they want is their homes fixed and a bit of certainty for the future.
But wait, is that not ten or 20 years away too??
You can read or down-load a copy of ‘Christchurch – Swamp to City, A Short History Of The Christchurch Drainage Board 1975 – 1989, by John Wilson, here: SWAMP CITY!
6/5/2013: One thing about the University of Canterbury Fencing Club’s annual Eccleston One Hit epee competition is its predictability – Andreas Sesun will win it. And he did it again this year, but the cup was given to someone else!
Don't worry about the pensive fellow standing in the corner, that's Brett, CUFC's Secretary!
Our youngest fencer - Alex - sadly she did not compete but did have a play with mum and dad's gear. The bare foot is that of her dad, four-times national epee champion Rangi de Abaffy.
Now some epee action....
Anna cops the One Hit cup from Ekky while Andreas sobs in the background.
Dave, Aileen and Keith in Van Damm's cafe after the action.
More to come ... so do come back soon.
4/5/2013: SHOVELING ON IN SWAMP CITY!
Swamp city residents are used to seeing giant knock-it-downs, huge trucks and all sorts of mechanical diggers, cutters and thingies, but there is still room for the old shovel as this pix shows. The hard-working fellow, Jeff, was busy on Opawa Road helping repair the earthquake damaged sewerage system – good on ya mate!
3/5/2013: What started as a university prank has now become a part of the national fencing calendar.
The Eccleston One Hit Epee competition, which started at the University of Canterbury Fencing Club some years ago as a fun event for club members, is on this Saturday. All fencers, even foilists and sabreurs, welcome!
When: Registration at 10.30am Saturday 4th May 2013.
Where: Teachers Collage Campus, Education Gymnasium 10, Christchurch.
It is the nearest thing in modern fencing to the now banned duel where the winner was the first to kill or incapacitate their opponent or later, to draw blood, hence the term “first blood.”
In the Eccleston Epee Every fencer competes against every other fencer to one touch/hit. A win scores 2 points, a double-hit, where fencers hit each other within 1/25th of a second, scores 1 point and a loss scores 0 points. The person with the highest total score wins the tournament
Dave at a Fenz coaching weekend in Wellington in the 1990's.
Eccleston a former high school teacher, who won the national epee championship way back in 1972 and who introduced hundreds of Kiwis to the sport as a coach and volunteer official, is now retired and living in Nelson. The event, which carries his name, is in recognition of all that hard work done by Dave and the dozens of other voluntary officials to advance our ancient art and modern sport.
Dave is attending this year’s event.
2/5/2013: While some folks bleat about the cost of the rebuild and dither about what is going where and how, others just get on with it as these pix taken on Waltham Road show.
Pix posted 29th of last month.
Pix taken last week.
The three-bedroomed units, all sold, are due for completion at the end of May!
Wonder how long til the Wasteland (the former city centre) is rebuilt??? Ten to twenty years would be a guess. Read about the latest building in the Wasteland that's set to come down in THE PRESS.
1/5/2013: Can homeopathy improve the condition of this damaged Fitzgerald Avenue building?
Read about the efficaciousness, or not, of HOMEOPATHY!
30/4/2013: Scots wha hae .....
Oh dear, another tongue-in-cheek moment. The posting on 26th saying that a fencing club in Queenstown is the nation’s most southerly has incensed Robbie and others living and fencing in Dunedin.
We are the most southerly fencing centre they cry. They are right, in fact the most southerly point, according to our geographic expert, is in the Caitlins, not down by Bluff or Invercargill as one would surmse. As our claymore wielding brothers-in-armes put it; Otago University Swords Club, Salle Angelo and Claymore Swords Club are all well south of Queenstown, and if you want to be pedantic, Claymore is about one kilometre south of University with Salle Angelo in between!”
Now here is a question for our Southern brothers; did fencing ever take place in the Dunedin town hall, just behind the statue of Robbie Burns shown above?
Now for some good news, the results of that missing sabre event from the National u15/u17 Fencing Championships held in Christchurch over the weekend have finally been posted on the Fencing New Zealand website.
Wonder if the FIE's international development programme includes sabre??
Oh dear, my tongue-in-cheek rant about the lack of results for the U15 sabre event seems to have upset someone? Previously the results have been e-mailed to me in the early hours by the hardworking organisers, but not today, even though I did ask for them. However they magically appeared on the Fenz website, this morning and the MidSouth site too. Even more strangely, there are still no U15 sabre results posted?
Anyway if you want to see the full results go to those websites, but here are a couple of shots of spectators who visited the New Zealand U15 and U17 Fencing Championships ….
And to show no hard feelings about those other weapons, here’s a pix of epee action from the final of the boys U17 epee event.
The winner, Lucian, is on the right but you will have to go to the Fencing New Zealand site to find out whom the other fellow is!
28/4/2013; More results from the New Zealand U15 and U17 Fencing Championships being held in Christchurch.
U17 Girls Epee;
1 Wai Ling Chan, Christchurch; 2 Annick Fenaughty, Wellington;
3= Samantha Mythen and Laura Blythell, both Christchurch; 5 Shani Ehlers; 6 Katherine Little, Wellington, 7 Rosie Graham. Wellington; 8 Brittany Wyatt, Christchurch; 9 Ennie Petersen, Wellington; 10 Ashleigh Goh, Christchurch; 11 Elizabeth Wilson, Christchurch; Amy Wilson, Wellington.
U17 Boys Foil. 1 Clovis Dyson, Auckland; 2 Daniel Keleghan, Christchurch; 3= Lucian Nightingale, Christchurch and James Tweedle, Wellington; 5 James Hanwood, Wellington; 6 Matthew Dall’asen, Sydney; 7 Caleb Buchanan, Wellington; 8 Gavin Thomas, Wellington; 9 Jonathan Carruth, Wellington; 10 Zachary Shima, Wellington; 11 Reuben Hilder, Dunedin; 12 Russell Johnson, Wellington; 13 Eddie Jacobs, Wellington; 14 Oliver Jarvis, Dunedin; 15 Anthony Goh, Christchurch; 16 Nicholas Henderson, Wellington; 17 Luca Young, Wellington; 18 Louis Jennings, Dunedin; 19 William Fulton, Christchurch.
No results have been provided for the sabre event but I do know it was won by a Feilding lad with a Christchurch lad second. Lets hope this oversight is just an accident and not part of an overall plan by tournament organisers to do away with the noble weapon of SABRE!!
The champs end today with the girls foil, boys epee and sabre events.
Photographic evidence that the sabre did take place at the New Zealand U15 Fencing Championships yesterday!
27/4/2013: Results from Friday's events at the New Zealand U15 and U17 Fencing Championships, being held in Christchurch, April 26th, 27th and 29th.
Girls Foil. 1 Sara-Louise Williams, Auckland; 2 Valeria Benjamin, Auckland; 3= Samantha Fowler and Emily Thomson, both Auckland: 5 Brittany Wyatt, Christchurch:; 6 Jess Gracie, Auckland; 7 Katherine Little, Wellington; 8 Elizabeth Little, Wellington.
Boys Foil. 1 James Tweedle, Wellington; 2 Matthew Dall’asen, Sydney; 3= Russell Johnson and Zachary Shima, both Wellington; 5 Issac Rushholme Cobb, Wellington; 6 Alastair Keleghan, Christchurch; 7 James Harwood, Wellington; 8 Louis Jennings, Dunedin; 9 Jonathan Carruth, Wellington; 10 Nicholas Henderson, Wellington; 11 Gavin Thomas, Wellington; 12 Luca Young, Wellington; 13 Eddie Jacobs, Wellington; 14 Jeffrey Chen, Christchurch; 15 Liam James, Christchurch; 16 Mikhail Lopez, Christchurch; 17 Riley Symon, Dunedin; 18 Tristan Forrester, Christchurch; 19 Max Turner, Christchurch; 20 Ross Shepherd, Christchurch.
Mixed Epee. 1 Sheldon Ogilvie, Christchurch; Gavin Thomas, Wellington; 3= Max Nicholls, Christchurch and Matthew Dall’asen, Sydney; 5 Ashleigh Goh, Christchurch; 6 Ross Shepherd, Christchurch, 7 Katherine Little Wellington, 8 Brittany Wyatt, Christchurch.
26/4/2013: A Sword between his teeth .....
An Aussie cleaned up Kiwi fencers on his way to the final of the boys foil event at the New Zealand U15 fencing champs in Christchurch Matthew Dall’asen, of Sydney, and Kiwi James Tweedle made this afternoon’s final. In the girl’s foil event Aucklanders Sara-Louise Walker and Valeria Benjamin faced-off in their final.
Tomorrow sees the U15 sabre event and U17 boy’s foil and girl’s epee.
Fencers and officials leave the gym at Cashmere High School after the fire-alarm went off late afternoon.
Have a look at t he nation's most southerly fencing club; Queenstown Fencing.
24/4/2013: SOME FENCING NEWS - AFTER ALL IT WAS THE ORIGINAL REASON FOR STARTING THIS SITE!
The Secretary of the local fencing organisation had an e-mail from a Chinese fencing manufacturer recently. It was headed, "barbed wire''. Naturally Kiwi fencers are hardened to the number-eight and wire fencing jokes they are the butt of in New Zealand, these are not so bad in Australia and are, generally, non-existant in the rest of the world. The Secretary sent a nice reply declining to purchase the barbed wire. Now on to the real news:
This week and next week Christchurch will reverberate to the clash of steel when the New Zealand U15 and U17 Fencing Championships and the Eccleston One Hit Epee competitions
come to town.
Around sixty young fencers from Auckland to Dunedin will be attacking each other this Friday, Saturday and Sunday in a bid to become a New Zealand champion in the three weapons used in modern fencing; sabre, epee and foil, in bouts of five and 15 hits, while in the Eccleston epee event it will be the sudden death of one hit – just like in a real duel!
Venue for the Fencing New Zealand (Fenz) U15 and U17 champs is the Cashmere High School Gym, entry from 61 Barrington Road, Cashmere, Christchurch.
The following weekend the Eccleston One Hit Epee competition is hosted by the University of Canterbury Fencing Club in celebration of former national epee champion and coach, David Eccleston, of Nelson, at the Ilam Teachers Collage Campus, Education Gymnasium 10, Christchurch, at 10.30am on Saturday 4th May.
Non fencers are welcome to come and see this ancient art and modern sport in action.
21/4/2013: ANOTHER CYCLIST DIES IN CHRISTCHURCH.
Sad but true though in this case it appears the cyclist had a cardiac or medical problem this morning and was not killed by the bullying four-wheelers.
Cycling in Christchurch seems set to increase in popularity with the talk about new and safer cycleways planned for the re-built city, but sadly there is no talk about four-wheel development. There has been no talk about electric cars or buses, no plans for re-charging them in the central city and nothing about any cost savings they could bring.
Read some facts, figures and ideas here: http://www.rmi.org/
Strange? One could almost agree with some of the more off-the-wall statements by folks that the rebuild has been hi-jacked by businessmen with deep pockets and aided and abetted by our elected and un-elected bureaucrats and politicians. Everything seems focused on the Wasteland (the former city centre) and the more undamaged parts of the city, anyone seen Bob, Gerry, Key or Marryat in the Eastern Marches with the little people lately?
As for the problems in the Earthquake Commission, here's more, , a Government Department trumpeting 427,356 home assessments completed – in Christchurch????? Cummon EQC that’s more than one-and-a-bit homes for the 348,400 folks living in Quakesville! Gerry and John are very quiet – another case of amnesia perhaps….
Wonder if their propaganda trips abroad are a way of avoiding the responsibility, bullshit and crap of dealing with the aftermath of the Great Catastrophe? Roll on election time.
Pommy novelist Arnold Bennett coined a saying known by most good reporters and journalists: “Journalists say a thing that they know isn't true, in the hope that if they keep on saying it long enough it will be true”. Have our politicians taken this to heart?
Wot's propoganda? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propaganda
20/4/2013: CAFE ACTION IN CHRISTCHURCH THIS WEEK.
An Opawa giant mushroom is displayed by Henk who found it during his daily ramble round the leafy suburb.
Henk ate the thing, check here to find if he survived?
New Brighton artists, Pete and Friend, take a tide break.
19/4/2013: A CLEAN SIGN ?
Now you see it!
Now you don't!
A sign of the times? Our elderly former Railway Worker, now retired, was heart-broken when he drove past the former railway station the other day. Some of his fascinating ramblings have been recalled on this site, but he was strangely quiet after his drive-past.
This confirms in-depth research that older citizens will never revisit the former Central Business District, City Centre, Rebuild Zone or the Wasteland in numbers - the monuments to their lives are all gone!!
18/4/2013: ARE THE WORMS FEEDING ON CHRISTCHURCH?
The Pump House.
Now read all about road signs made from recycled BODY PARTS! Warning - graphic content may upset some sensitive types.
Talking about sensitive types, have you heard the story about the earthquake looter in north New Brighton who got caught and chained to a fence and had piss and shit tossed over him by his captors until the Police arrived some hours later - They made him take off his clothes and remove as much of the filth he could before taking him away.
17/4/2013: AN IFORMATIVE SIGN.
The who, what, where and when of effective communication!
Answer to yesterday's conundrum - the right-hand side of the driveway is in the Green Zone while the lefthand side is in the Red Zone - did you spot the difference??
More to come. Tomorrow, signs made from body parts!
16/4/2013: AN OLD FAVOURITE!
Sorry no giant chocolate fish for anyone - only two answered and both were wrong. Both houses are in the RED ZONE!
Now here's another conundrum for you to solve, which side of this driveway is RED ZONED and which side is NOT??
15/4/2013: MORE SIGNS OF THE TIMES.
Here's a question for readers, which house is in Christchurch's infamous Red Zone? A giant chocolate fish for the first correct answer.
14/4/2013: A SIGN OF THE TIMES!
One of the interesting things about running a blog is the instant feedback it can generate. Headmasters, english teachers and former journalist workmates pointing out mistakes of grammar or fact, readers asking for more information about a pix or story, but even more exciting are the responses suggesting a future story or rant. Thanks to all, especially those who noted that the Archives for 2013 is giving out a 404 error – on to it asap.
Our Elderly Railway Worker, now retired, thinks recent rants contain too many swearwords and risqué ramblings, so no doubt he will be averting his beadies from this pix!?
More to come. Tomorrow, screwed again!
13/4/2013: ANOTHER SIGN!
For overseas readers, "Don't bowl me!" means don't knock me down. Thousands of buildings in Christchurch, many of great historical interest, have been bowled/demolished (or deconstructed in the tortuous language that has developed post-quakes) since the September 2010 and February 2011 earthquakes, completely changing the face of the city.
The building on High Street once housed COTTER'S a long-established family business well-known for selling vacuum cleaners and other electrical appliances.
More to come. Tomorrow the signs become more political.
12/4/2013: SIGN LANGUAGE.
A gallery of Christchurch signs.
Two years after the Great Catastrophe of February 2011 Christchurch has become a veritable gallery of signs. Most of us living here have become accustomed to them, but talking with a Scottish visitor recently the plethora of unusual signs have become a tourist magnet.
Where else would you a sign like the one above??
More to come.
11/4/2013: THE RED ZONE CONTRACTS! WILL THE LADIES OF THE NIGHT BE BACK?
Manchester Street, basking in the sun today - the quiet before the storm?
Once the favourite haunt of prostitutes this central city street which is still closed between Worcester and Tuam Streets, will officially open for traffic on Monday 15th.
The question is dear reader, will the girls return?
9/4/2013: Who has been pissing in these pots?
Poor Prime Minister Key, Gerry and his wastemakers, national politicians and bureaucrats all badly pissed on by the latest contempts over the Great Earthquake Commission Contremps (pronounced Greek) – see below. It makes them all look stupid. In fact it makes us ALL look stupid for allowing it to happen and putting up with it.
There is something badly wrong and weird about a Government organisation that has to take legal action against it’s own fuck-ups. For example; the razor wire approach when added to the Parata education imbroglio, the un-secret secret service puddle and the missing memories, highlights a lack of leadership in the National Government worse than that we, in Christchurch, have experienced under the Christchurch City Council and Civil Defence after the Great Catastrophe. Let’s hope that John Key and his minions have some utensils for bailing out the boat, quickly, before they sink and take ALL of us with em.
Read more in the nation’s top newspaper: THE PRESS.
Then read what the anonymous blogger says: “”I am EQC Truths and I prefer to remain anonymous. The reason EQC has lodged this frivolous action is to silence me for having had the temerity to question the endemic incompetence, nepotism, and deliberate delays made by the EQC commissars. EQC is trying to force me to out myself publicly, which would compromise my sources at EQC that provide me with vital information about the machinations of the organisation. This information is in the public interest, as a visit to the http://eqctruths.wordpress.com/ will confirm. “”
Now the question is dear reader, who pissed in the containers in the picture??
7/4/2013: The odd rant on this site has covered some of the interesting things that happen in a certain tiny North Island city.
Unlike Christchurch they fence in their portaloos, dress their statues in warm clothing and grow rhubarb in the centre of the city. Not that the quake city is devoid of bizarre happenings – gardening in the Red Zone immediately after February’s shake, fencing off civil defence and earthquake commission offices and demanding that 100-year-old houses and plastic film tunnel houses have fire escapes and wheelchair access are just some of the less bizarre, EQC’s razor-wire fences being one more off-the-planet actions.
However Palmerston North may outclass even that with this mobile grass. We know there has been a drought but this Green Machine is gotta be the most interesting response to it so far.
Read more about the Green Machine HERE!
Wonder what would happen if it came to ChCh? Would it get a red or green sticker? Need City Care to keep it tidy or have a safety fence round it when parked?
6/4/2013: It’s only an exercise! Do not panic!
Do not rush to escape over this still damaged New Brighton bridge on Sunday. You may be stopped by CCC, Sayrah, Ceedu, even EQC and Gerry and the Wastemakers, but not the Police.
Read more about the great escape at the nation’s top newspaper: THE PRESS.
4/4/2013: April Fools???
These Christchurch residents want what?
Good news for the EQC (Earthquake Commission) and Gerry and the Waste-makers, the blog eqctruths may take a rest or even shut up for good!
For those missing their regular knock-it-down fix here are a couple of shots of a, former, Addington parking building.
One of the buggers lifts it's great claw in satisfaction.
While it's mates take an Easter break.
30/3/2013: Hanging about at the old university, now the Arts Centre.
Now, what went on in that little room under the roof on the right in the 1960's and 70's?? All correct replies will receive a cfish! Also what is the first name carved on the back of the roof beam over the doorway?
Smoko at the Arts Centre in central Christchurch. No bloody earthquake's gonna interfere with that Kiwi tradition. Underneath the scaffolding is the Great Hall where many great events were hosted, from the New Prague Quartet to unouth Kiwi poets and even a major fencing competition!
29/3/2013: Wow, the University of Canterbury Fencing Club has hit on a winner with its Gratuitious Photo Competition - three responses so far, one from a flower grower, one from a policeman and one from a surgeon. They say Christchurch is still suffering from earthquake stress, but the sense of quirky humour is still alive and kicking.
Now some sad news. the Jungle Patrol Cafe at New Brighton closed yesterday. The popular suburban meeting place on Oram Avenue will re-open in a month or so as a, wait for it, junk shop!
Cafe owner Dave with some of his local customers.
Remember the Gerry and the Wastmaker's housing shortage that's not!! Well, this is the gateway to ....
Eight three-bedroomed units on this site on Waltham Road near the nice Waltham Park and pool are already sold!! Yep, and they have not even started building them. The stable ground in the Waltham and Sydenham areas is attracting developer interest - who needs the city centre with large cake tins and other buildings for out-of-towners, all the ratepayers want are affordable housing and nearby ammenities!
25/3/2013: Uni fencing club highlights the Christchurch re-build!
UC Fencing’s Gratuitous Photo Competition!
Forget planking, owling, teapotting, balling and all those other lamestream crazes – they’re sooo six months ago. Some of the lamer cool kids are into a new fad: fencing.
Standing in a fencing pose demands the agility of a lead pipe and the reactions of a desert cactus. It’s an activity the whole family can enjoy!
So fencers, grab a camera and get snapping! It’s alright if you don’t have the gear, just stand en garde in a random spot and send us the evidence.
Email entries to firstname.lastname@example.org or post them on our Facebook page by 30th of June 2013. You will be judged on comedic value and creativity.
There will be prizes of some sort for the best entries. Maybe.
Entries must be an accurate depiction of reality (that is, no Photoshopping). Judges’ decisions may not be final, but even if not, they will not be altered by tantrums. UC Fencing Club reserves the right to use entries for purposes including, but not limited to T-shirts, flyers, our website, our Facebook page, calendars, bumper
stickers and beach towels.
25/3/2013: The troubled bridge across the Heathcote River attracted a bit of interest, especially the bit about the masonic arms carved into the roof of the Lytellton railway tunnel which generated many e-mails, including a telling-off by the Former Railway Worker, now retired, but as yet no photographic evidence.
Now, would this constitute photographic evidence?? Local residents reckon the bridge is bowed?? It happened when both banks of the Heathcote River moved towards each other during our Great Catastrophe. You decide.
Another local resident tells of stopping a fire engine from the Timaru Fire Service from getting squished under this low bridge. The engine and its crew had turned up after the Great Catastrophe to help out (thanks lads!) and were on their way to the Ferrymead Fire Station using their GPS thingie to find the quickest route, trouble is it, apparently, doesn't take into account the height of vehicles and the clearance under bridges!
The low clearance catches out hundreds of locals, especially buses and cars towing tall trailers.
21/3/2013: A sticking point with New Zealand Post – non-sticky stamps!
British motoring journalist Jeremy Clarkson bought a little relief to the much maligned citizens of Palmerston North recently ... read his nice comments.
In an effort, over the last couple of years, to succour certain denizens of the tiny North Island city packets of emergency rations, namely chocolate fish and recently, the odd bottle of water (to fight the drought), have been posted to them.
New Zealand Post does a bloody good job delivering the wee packets despite untidy writing, incomplete address (No post code) and no return address. However, now and then, a package seems to go missing engendering the odd grumpy response from the beleaguered recipients.
I put this down to poor writing, wrong address or just bad luck, but recently I noticed the woman at the local Post Shop here in Christchurch sticking a piece of sellotape over the stamp. When quizzed about why she was doing it she replied that the stamps don’t always stick to the plastic bubble-wrap envelope!
Does the lost letter department of New Zealand Post have a collection of cfish?
18/3/2013: What about the Great New Zealand train robbery, asked a reader?
Well, our Elderly Railway Worker, now retired, has returned from his annual jaunt from Quake City and has said there were two robberies that he knew about. One in Canterbury at Rolleston Station and the other in Wellington at one of the suburban stations both allegedly committed by railway workers. Both, allegedly, concerned station takings which in those days consisted of cash from ticket sales.
He was a bit thin on the detail, but more talkative about the sexual shenanigans going on at the now demolished Christchurch Railway Station.
The building was designed in the 1930’s along with those in Auckland and Wellington, but for some reason was never built, unlike those in Auckland and Wellington and which is why the building looked aged and shop-worn when it was built in 1956.
Anyway it had a large basement including a huge bicycle area as most railway workers used cycles to get to and from work when the building was first designed (Take note those involved in the re-build). The former Elderly Railway Worker is very descriptive of the shenanigans that went on in the subterranean locker and ablutions areas – knee tremblers was one of the more printable terms he used.
Sounds like they must have been having wee earthquakes even back then?
So what have these two bridges to do with our Elderly Railway Worker, now retired? Look closely and you will see that the bridge over the Heathcote River being repaired is the modern road bridge, not the railway bridge in front of it.
They built them to last in the 1860's - Railways in Christchurch.
Anyway, to cut to the chase, our Elderly Railway Worker, now retired, reckons that in the ceiling of the Lyttelton railway tunnel, which was being built around the time when this bridge was , is carved the Masonic square and compass. It seems that William Moorhouse, one of the supporters of the rail tunnel between Lyttelton and Christchurch, was a MASON!
Auckland photographer and film-maker Stuart Page is no stranger to Christchurch, he studied photography at university here and turns-up regularly from time to time. It was his pic of the looting sign I used in the blurb about the second anniversary of the February 22nd 2011 earthquake and he was so chuffed about it he has sent some further images of the Great Catastrophe.
Up the creek without a paddle – never so true a statement as seen here: A pedestrian runs for safety in St Asaph Street during the large after-shock on June 23rd 2011, but pity the poor bugger at the top of the extension lift with nowhere to go!
Like mine, in January this year, his eye was also attracted by this elderly Austin Seven on the corner of Manchester and Tuam Streets.
You can read more about Stu HERE!
The pic at the beginning of this rant was taken by Henri Shustak, the son of one of Stu's lecturers at Uni. Stu's movie about photography lecturer Larance Shustak won "Best New Zealand Feature Documentary” award.
Oh, and Stu will be back in Christchurch in early April to do a music video about a local resident who was arrested and jailed for entering his Red Zoned home and Larance, affectionately known at Bobajaan, was also a keen fencer!!
13/3/2013: Christchurch is bedevilled by thieves, looters, thugs and other socially deformed persons as this damaged mobile roadside sign on Brougham Street shows.
The Police and citizens do their best, but it appears that when the socially deformed are caught and handed over to our Justice System they are allowed to go and re-offend. Quite what the solution is has taxed academics, lawyers, and many others for years. An ad hoc survey of young thugs locked up in the late 1950’s early 1960’s at a youth detention centre in the North Island showed most re-offended with-in 12-months of release. Nothing seems to have changed, read this story in the nation's top newspaper.
Just to put the boot in, so to speak, the mobile sign with its broken window, had it’s boot-lid removed a few weeks earlier. Now the wee collision repair company is scratching their heads about future advertising – any thug-proofing ideas??
Do you know of someone selling a stolen BMW boot-lid?
12/3/2013: MORE CUT AND THRUST FOR YOU TO READ.
THE FENCING NEW ZEALAND
Under 15 and Under 17 2013 National Championships
Christchurch 26 - 28 April 2013
Cashmere High School Gym, entry is from 61 Barrington Street, Cashmere, Christchurch
Provisional Timetable: (all events are Individual)
- Thursday 25 April (Anzac Day)
Weapons check Thursday evening (and daily before each event starts for out of town fencers)
- Friday 26 April
U15 Boys' Foil
U15 Girls' FoilU15 Boys' Epee
U15 Girls' Epee
U15 Boys' Sabre (this event may be moved to Saturday 27 April)
U15 Girls Sabre (this event may be moved to Saturday 27 April)
- Saturday 27 April
U17 Men's Foil
U17 Women's Epee
- Sunday 28 April
U17 Women's Foil,U17 Men's Epee
U17 Men's Sabre
U17 Women's Sabre
The timetable is provisional and start/finish times will be firmed up once the organisers have some indication of entries, especially in epee and sabre events.
The Tournament Organiser is Kate Brill.
Phone: 03 351 6485 or Mob: 022 048 5037
Post: 12 Harrods Court, Ilam, Christchurch 8053
Entry forms and further information will be published on the Mid South website; Here.
11/3/2013: ANCIENT ART AND MODERN SPORT......
What about some fencing news was a recent plea.
Well I would if I knew any, but with the fencing season in New Zealand just getting underway there is little news to post. As far as fencing gossip and information goes there are a reducing number of sources. Out of the ten websites scrolled though on a regular basis only five are operative or have been updated in the last six months – not good for our ancient are and modern sport.
This sabre double attack is courtesy of the international fencing federation, FIE, which celebrates it's 100th birthday this year.
All the clubs in Christchurch are underway. There are six senior clubs in Christchurch which welcome beginners or experts alike SO THERE IS NO EXCUSE NOT TO COME AND TRY IT.
University of Canterbury Fencing Club. Location: Education Gymnasium 10. Saturday 10.30am to 12.30pm. Contact: Brett Davis at 03 967 0069.
United Fencing Club. Shirley Intermediate School Gymnasium. Training Times: Tuesday 7.00 pm to 9.00pm Contact: Rob Sheard email@example.com Ph: 03 980 1914
The Sabre Club. Waltham Primary School hall corner of Hastings and Vienna Streets. Training Times: Thursdays, (except the second Thursday of each month when the hall is taken over by rock hounds), starting at 7pm. Contact: Vik Manuge, firstname.lastname@example.org or phone: 03 366 6396
The Fencing Institute, 91 Jack Hinton Drive, Addington Training Times: Various. Contact: Kate Brill Ph: 021 615 095
Mt Pleasant Swords Club . Mt Pleasant Scout Hall, Old School Reserve, 172 Major Hornbrook Road. Training Times: Mondays, 7 till 8.30pm Contact: Roger Horton: Ph:03 981 3159.
Christchurch Fencing Academy . Location: Kendal School, 53 Kendal Avenue, Burnside. Training Times: Monday Nights 7pm to 9pm. March – November. Contact: Jan Tabak Ph: 03 980 6935, cell: 021 163 0429 or Mary Anne-Baxter - 352 9257
Someone's accused me of milking a lame joke about the new seal ( see below) - nah, drink this!!!!!
Someone in City Care has a sense of humour - are they calling the grass, right, growing on this riverside street new seal?
City Care workers have also been striping yuccky weed from the bed of the Heathcote River, as no doubt you have read in the earlier postings on this site, and deserve flowers not a wreath.
This wreath was one of those tossed into the river to mark the second anniversary of the February 22nd 2011 earthquake, but didn't make it all the way to the Avon/Heathcote estuary and the sea. It has been trapped in a stretch of the river not yet cleared.
Here's what is facing the City Car workers.
Read about the most scenic river in Christchurch: THE HEATHCOTE RIVER.
In bustling Sydenham you have to fight for a car park or take a risk, like these idiots, and park on a bus stop.
Perhaps some drivers are taking the former borough’s motto to heart?? (The number-plate has been vandalised to protect the stupid.)
4/3/2013: We wus fust! We was first!
And here is the photographic evidence to prove it - A security guard and high fences protect the former Christchurch Art Gallery turned civil defence bunker from the depredations of ordinary citizens - NOTE the lack of razor wire, that's an EQC addition.
First it was Civil Defence, now it is the Earthquake Commission, what it is it they have in common? Their way of dealing with the fucked-up and pissed-off citizens of Christchurch who are trying to deal with the organisations and their apparent incompetence and lack of commonsense.
So what was both organisations’ first response? Bunker down. Build high fences and in the case of EQC, topped with razor wire, to keep out the residents they are trying to help. Read about it in the nation's top newspaper.
Let’s face it, it was and is a monumental job, but somehow Gerry and the Wastemakers and John Key are damned if they do and damned if they don’t in trying to CATCH THE WIND!
And here is an EQC INSIDERS VIEW
So you can make up your own minds as to who’ll Catch The Wind.
And HERE is how the department of Civil Defence and Emergency Management reckoned it performed after February 2011 – they don’t seem to say anything about September 2010.
Bet Bob and Roger are happy to have a bit of respite!?!
3/3/2013: Would you build a 2.2-metre high fence round this idyllic scene???
That's what the Canterbury Cricket folks want to do: HAGLEY OVAL! It's called an embankment.
And for those wanting their weekly knock-it-down fix.
Here's one at work on Hazeldean Road the other day. But don't worry, Walker Industries are still alive and kicking in Hornby!
1/3/2013: A dogs Life?
All the rants by elected and unelected bureaucrats about the Great Rebuild and how it is generating jobs or, will generate jobs, seems at odds with what is actually happening.
For example, it is said of the thirty or so folks who completed a post-graduate Project Managers course at the cesspit, the Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology for those of you not from Christchurch, only about ten have jobs, the rest, well you figure it out – employers want EXPERIENCED slaves – not ones with a bit of paper that they then have to train. And THAT is from the mouth of one of those who graduated and is doing general labouring.
This is highlighted by another young attendee at the cesspit who completed a plumbing course and has scoured the city looking to be taken on as an apprentice. The lad has even gone to the extremes of offering to work for free just to gain that experience so he can collar a slot as an apprentice. Work, what work?
For example, the nation’s top newspaper is outsourcing its classified advertising to Auckland – more jobs gone.
Talking to a couple of employers confirms that there is not enough work for those who want to, but one, who employs general labourers, says that a good percentage of those applying for jobs are illiterate, innumerate and have a poor work and time-keeping ethos. SLAVERY?
I know of a job applicant who some years ago applied for 125 positions before getting a job and it is much the same today with most of those advertising for slaves not even bothering to reply to e-mailed applications.
Perhaps it is time for another SLAVES' REVOLT??
Cpit. Says: “We’re one of the South Island’s largest tertiary institutes attracting more than 24,000 innovative and exciting learners from our own shores and across the globe.”
Another example of market forces at work??
See Archives 2013 for stories and pix before this date.
About the photographs on this website.
Gossip Page: The Front Page of The Press, Christchurch and the South Island's largest newspaper, goes to bed in the good old days of hot metal type; Montage at the bottom of this page, Australian foilist Franki Bartolilo; Three-times world veteran foil champion Maurizio Galvan fronts up for New Zealand television; Epee action from Challenge Australia; More epee action from the 02 Commonwealth Fencing Championships; A famous French fencer captured in Seoul; Attendees at a training camp in Christchurch run by Maitre Galvan in 2007.
About Me Page: Two top epee coaches at the Giardino Club in Milan. Oleg Putzanov, left, and Gianni Muzio, right. Montage; Kiwi fencer, Andrew Kell, demonstrates the new sabre mask - 2004 A Space Oddity - in Madrid; Top Kiwi womens' sabreur Katherine Taylor; Australian Olympian, Bill Ronald, relaxes on Lygon Street, Melbourne; Hot Man - an interesting portrait from the Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Shah Alam; Christchurch fencing physiotherapist Scott Suen bounds in for a hit against a luckless Australian fencer; Kiwi sabreur, Robert Snoep watches the action at the CFC in Shah Alam; A polite discussion takes place among University fencers at the Uni Games circa 1969. Last but not least, a tidy black Morris Minor photographed in Melbourne. A famous Italian Fencing Master and three-times world vets foil champion used my Morris Minor van for his afternoon siestas while running a training camp in Christchurch in 2007. The fact that he went on to win his third title on the trot is no indication of the efficacy, or otherwise, of sleeping in the back of a Morris Minor van named Corrie the Morrie!
Learn To Fence Page: Youngsters, barely taller than the epees they wield, duel it out in the fencing club at Toledo, Spain; Hitting actions - from beginner to Olympic champion - some example of how to hit your opponent; Kiwi epeeist Natalie Fraser fights into fifth place at a national womens epee competition in Vallalodid, Spain. What every competititve fencer needs - an FIE international fencing license - this one from 1973. A promising young sabreur is given a lesson by one of Spain's top coaches, Luis Jiminez, at the Royal Spanish Fencing Federation's national training centre in Madrid. Aussie coach Mathieu at work; A fencing tournament underway in Adelaide, South Australia.
Books To Read Page: Olympic epee champion Marcel Fischer (Switzerland), Rangi de Abaffy and Willie Upritchard (New Zealand) pose against the ivy after a training session in my backyard in Christchurch. The Montage: Aussie Fencer Sarah Osvath recovers from a tumble; The teams line-up at the Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Malaysia; Top Kiwi women fencers Jess and Les fight it out at the New Zealand National Fencing Championships; Remember when? Kiwi sabreur Keith Mann shows how to fleche during a sabre bout in the 60's! Mann, twice President of New Zealand Fencing and who still competes in local tournaments, received an award for his services to the sport in 2007. Bottom, Hamish McCracken limbers up while some tired Spaniards watch Challenge Australia action and Waimaria and Karita think about what book to read!
Fencing Businesses Page: Top. A New Brighton resident enjoys the nation's top newspaper (The Press) in a local cafe; University Students march through Cathedral Square as part of Capping Day celebrations in the 1960's; A view of the Tagus River near Toledo in Spain; Another shot of University of Canterbury students celebrating Capping Day with a float highlighting Government funding cuts to universities; Chris, the head Reader at The Press, scans reporters copy for mistakes before it is sent for setting in the days before computerisation of the newspaper. Bottom: A Kiwi fencer begs for mercy after being disarmed; Top epeeist and coach David Eccleston at a training camp in Wellington; The last page for the next day's paper is sent to the platers; Ioan Pop, The FIE's Technical Director, captured at the World Champs in Seoul; A photographer from the Otago Daily Times captures the action at the 2006 nationals.
Links Page: Corps a corps or head to head - you decide. The power of acting - Christchurch actor and fencer, Simon Young, attracts the attention of a young admirer during a production in the Botanic Gardens. You need a good sense of balance for inline skating as Christchurch sabreur William Cowper found out. They might look like two grumpy old men, but three-times world foil champion Maurizio Galvan and local coach Rob Sheard were focusing on the actions of fencers at a training camp at the Fencing Institute. Kiwi fencers love beating up their big brothers in Australia and this shot shows Christchurch epeeist Hassan Kamel with the medal he won in Sydney; Gruff young Kiwi fencers ham it up at the Fencing Institute in Christchurch. Action in the mens epee at the 2007 New Zealand Nationals in Wellington where 14-year-old sabreur Alex Chan stole a seven-hit lead on former National champion Chris Nokes. Nokes came back to win 14-7 proving that a good Old Un can beat an uppity Young Un. Aussie and Kiwi coaches who took part in a training camp taken by Ioan Pop, the FIE's Technical Director. Action in the womens epee event at the World Champs in Seoul. Two members of the University of Canterbury Fencing Club fight off in the Duel at Dawn which marks the end of the fencing season. The duel is held at different venues each year, in this case it was the Christchurch Botanic Gardens!