Dodoa one line quiz (Americans need not attempt)—

Q:  Why did the seabirds fall and crash?

A:  (No, not yet, go to the foot of the page. But don’t do it until you have read the clues presented in this referenced article in the Southland Times: CLICK HERE)

And why would I exclude Yanks?

Nothing personal. I have the greatest (and ever increasing, dammit) respect for Yanks—but it pays to be practical, sometimes. Here, now have thee a nice chicken to admire (aaaawww, c’mon Argus! Why the hell should anyone admire a skinny black duck?) (So read on, and be enlightened …).

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Okay then … but you’ll hate me for it—here’s yer answer:


finger down

A:  ‘Cos they ran out of petrol~!






devil-29973__340I’m allowed to ask innocent questions. I’m also allowed (nay, expected) to visit other crank sites and gobble up their good stuffs with mad raptorous abandonment*.

So I wolf the u-tubes of folks like Jimmy (‘Bright Insight’) (loooove his enthusiasm); or of a someone who seems happy making a living by helping folks glut their desires for mystery—Brien Foerster’s offerings are worth the visit too. It’s an honest buck**.


I follow leads, asking questions from a great height (Google satellites—we mortals can’t get much higher from our armchairs). Like this—

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—which to put into context you’d have to go to Brien’s UT post: CLICK HERE

I notice a lot of things but the most intriguing might also have the most mundane explanations: like what are those wee circles?

While poor ol’ Brien ponders his shattered pyramid being off true north by 23 degrees, I ponder the minors … here, have a nice shattered pyramid—

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—possibly damaged beyond economical repair by some oaf stumbling about in the dark. Or perhaps God got grumpy ‘cos they didn’t slaughter Him enough lambs***.

I love cranks and admire anyone who turns an honest buck. People want weirdies, Brien serves ’em up—but genuine weirdies you can touch, kick, climb over and feel that you’ve got your money’s worth—

—not like those in church where the holey bikkie blatantly does NOT become human flesh, nor the wine turn into (retch) blood. Brrrrr, but it takes all sorts …

Eve & Lution

“He wot, you say? Loves animals? Oh … really?”




* No. Good spotting, but it’s not a typo … us birdbrains are right into our puns, no?

** Hence my intense dislike of the clergy (any clergy).

*** God looooooves little lambs, they’re so … … innocent. And delicious.



my greatest fascinations. It sobers me up, it intoxicates me—in brief, it blows my furry little brain. Screen Shot 2018-03-01 at 10.48.46

To contemplate time is to waste your life for no real answers.

Perhaps, maybe, Fitzgerald had it right all along in his varied interpretations of Khayyam’s ‘Rubaiyat’.

I may well get growled at for violating a

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copyright, but it’s all with the very best of intentions—here above is a young lady of modern dimensions; and here below

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… is a wee lassie who (even with the best of help from her numerous divinities) passed away several thousand years ago.

So? Ancient Egypt had attractive damsels too, so what? So let’s move deeper into the mire that is Time and see what happens when they meet—

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—and ask ourselves, what is the lady on the left saying? What might she say? But certainly to those with eyes to hear and ears to see she speaks loud and clear.

(“Reading you strength five, Ma’am!”)       

Here’s where I met them. If you go there have a healthy slug of rum first, shoo the cats off the keyboard and send the missus out to make the coffee or something—


—and perhaps she just may speak to you, too

kismet 1 red



or was it vandals? Both? Who knows, it’s all ancient history now (hence my ‘Ozzy’ reference in a previous post somewhere)—


I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter’d visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamp’d on these lifeless things,
The hand that mock’d them and the heart that fed.

And on the pedestal these words appear:
“My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!”
Nothing beside remains: round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.


I prefer to think of sackers as Vandals. We have ’em in modern Invercargill too, still, and they are voted into office—some of ’em—others by sheer talent kick and gouge and scratch and bite their way to positions of ultimate power. ‘Tis ever thus …

Now look ye upon these mighty works:

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—where by the hand of Man Person a lovely pyramid rises majestic and eternal above the deserts of trees and verdant stuffs, and …

… catch my despair as a Great Plan comes to fruition. (Aside: New Zealanders do not know the meaning of the simple English word ‘prone’. But our Cunning can, and do, apply it, twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools.)

If it wasn’t bad enough that New Zealand is genuinely ‘earthquake prone’ (yes, we get ’em a lot here) they actually broadcast the fact to all and sundry.

Not good … what they naively really mean is that Kiwiland stands at earthquake risk (face it, so does anybody).

In Invercargill it appears that clever people are using the fact to push/promote their own agendas.

The old saying is that “You can’t fight City Hall!” and there’s a great deal of truth therein. You can fight, yes—but expect to win? (Hah! You wish …)

So the ambitious here have a new broom—and she is decisive and swift. Atilla the Hun couldn’t have done better than she has, just look at these lovely trees now—

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—and look upon Great works, ye paltry (it means citizens — you know, taxpayers and junk, to be courted only on election day) and weep*.



* Ooops, sorry trees … but you were in the way, dammit! (And in a hundred years who will give a large rodent’s derriere anyway?)




I can tell. I would say it’s a sense of possession coupled with a sense of loss; multiplied by beliefs.

With clear conscience I state that I am as humanitarian as (almost) anybody.

With clear conscience I state that I am as possessive as anybody too. Raised in ‘free’ countries I always looked with condescending disbelief at the situations of others in less happier lands. I decided that they deserved themselves.

And they got it.

So why are we destroying ourselves to make room for them?

Who is pulling our strings?

Who, behind the scenes, is commanding our own masters? As sure as hell it’s not us—democracy be damned.


I’m happy to accept that my nations’ (plural) politics were established rationally using Christianity as a part vehicle—you know, the old ‘do as you would be done by’ stuff that looks good but nobody actually does.

But there is a


called Islam. Brrrr.

It’s taken Christian politics two thousand years to acquire equality-of-the-sexes, for example—a condition impossible under Islam where women are nothing more than breeding machines (to produce warriors for Allah) and receptacles for men’s lusts (rewards from Allah)—although Islamics will earnestly bleat that in Islam women are cherished, loved, protected … even put into black bags to ‘protect them from the lustful eyes of men who aren’t their masters  owners  … theirs’.


has worked to bring down the western systems. Someone is flooding Europe with a great sickness, in the name of Compassion.

To suggest that it is NOT a good thing to import millions of savages into civilised Europe is to risk the wrath of all, including the ‘United’ Nations—opprobrium from the very people who will be the greatest victims of the coming changes.

I hope I’m wrong.

If I’m wrong, please tell me so—in words I can understand. And better—tell me WHY I am wrong.

Until then I offer these pale echoes—

This royal throne of kings, this sceptred isle,
This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars,
This other Eden, demi-paradise,
This fortress built by nature for herself
Against infection and the hand of war,
This happy breed of men, this little world,
This precious stone set in the silver sea,
Which serves it in the office of a wall,
Or as a moat defensive to a house
Against the envy of less happier lands;
This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England,
this nurse, this teeming womb of royal kings,
Feared be their breed and famous by their birth,
Renowned for their deeds as far from home
For Christian service and true chivalry
As is the sepulchre, in stubborn Jewry,
Of the world’s ransom, blessed Mary’s son;
This land of such dear souls, this dear dear land,
Dear for her reputation through the world,
Is now leased out – I die pronouncing it –
Like to a tenement or a pelting farm.
England, bound in with the triumphant sea,
Whose rocky shore beats back the envious siege
Of watery Neptune, is now bound in with shame,
With inky blots and rotten parchment bonds.
That England that was wont to conquer others
Hath made a shameful conquest of itself.

—make of it what you will.


spare the time, this guy has his finger well on the pulse—

—and names the principle tool of the enemy.


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is he still a figure 0f “WHAAAAT? — Shock, gasp, horrors, dismay!!”?


Ladies and Gentlemen,

and the rest of you oafs—I give you now my prompt (as in cue, or clue, or trigger—not as in immediate).

Read it if you dare, and bitterly regret all those missed omelettes. Miss an omelette even once and you’ve lost it for ever (but let’s not get lost in philosophising here; I’m sure God knew what S/He was doing when It set the ball rolling—

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—all those years ago.) To see what I’m (rather indignantly, I might add, on your behalf, not mine) raving about this time just click the eggie pic above. If all goes well you will be delivered unto The New Zealand Herald. But be assured that the ol’ dog has had two eggs (yes, two! Eeeeeeek!) eggs for breakfast every morning for decades. Fried, and served hot on cheese on toast.


that my recipe (sans frills) is more or less a croque mitaine of French faim (sort of)—

“Monsieur Argus, Sir?”

“Good heavens … it’s Little Virginie! Virginia’s fro  French cousine!”

“Sir … don’t you mean une c. Madame? A croque mitaine is a sort of bugbear used to frighten les little enfants into being bon!”

(Bugger! It must run in their family …)


“HEY! Vous! Monsieur Argus!”


(Oh no …)

Bugbear big

“Vous avez something against croque mitaines?”


Nothing at all against CMs … but a lot against people who believe everything they’re told. As a ‘live, and let live’ kinda oaf myself I’ve enjoyed many raised eyebrows over the past decades for what I choose to eat (and actually buried a few health-nuts).

C’est la vie …

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for the departed

unsung Heroes—


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The following verse was written by Robert Richardson to entertain the troops at  the Observer Christmas bash:


It was an ancient sub-editor and he stoppeth many libels,

Fowler’s Modern English Usage and the ODWE were his bibles.

We met in the Bodoni Arms, it was his favourite venue,

He sat alone, a pint in hand, and made corrections to the menu.


“Pray tell me, master sub-editor, your secrets and your tricks,

“How many prima donnas you have saved from looking pricks.”

He raised his head and gazed at me with a piercing, bloodshot eye,

“’T’would be my pleasure, sir,” he said, “but I am rather dry.


“A double brandy will suffice; it helps soak up the ale,

“You get ’em in, then I’ll begin to tell my subbing tale.”

I hastened to the bar and bought the drink that he desired,

Convinced that what he told me would be sober and inspired.


Returning to the table, I set the glass within his reach

Then sat, a humble acolyte, as he composed himself to speech.

“In the beginning was the word, but which word we’ll never learn

“Because a sub deleted it to avoid a widow turn.


“And in the Gospel of St John, one chapter seems too terse,

“Where the two-word sentence ‘Jesus wept’ appears as just one verse.

“A sub-editor did that, my boy, and I shall tell you why:

“He had to make a par somewhere ‘cos the text was one line shy.


“And so it goes, from age to age, in every realm and land,

“You’ll find the diligent sub-editor, a style book in his hand.

“We guard our Mother English tongue, keep her pure and unalloyed,

“Just see what dreadful things go wrong when our talents aren’t employed.


“We’d have asterisked out those filthy words Lady Chatterley learnt from Mellors

“And if Dickens had but had a sub, his books would be novellas.

“We know ‘can’ from ‘may’ and ‘may’ from ‘might’,

“And never say ‘less’ when ‘fewer’ is right,


“We punctuate punctiliously and are alert for innuendoes,

“We can all spell ‘desiccated’ and don’t rise to crescendos.

“Of grammar and of syntax our knowledge is formidable,

“Though frankly we don’t give a toss about an unstressed syllable.


“To denigrate the sub-editor is the action of a moron,

“A word that very nearly rhymes with that little twat Giles Coren.

“When it comes to writing headlines, polysyllables we eschew,

“We have a taste for shorter words, like ‘mull’ and ‘ire’ and ‘rue’. “


“Your wisdom overwhelms me, no counsel could be finer,

“But can you explain to me, I beg, the role of the designer?”

“Don’t speak to me of that lot!” (He gathered spit – and spat),

“A paper needs designers like an oyster needs a hat.


“Oh they’ll draw you pretty pages, you can’t change them ‘cos it’s art,

“Then once you’ve made the copy fit, they rip the thing apart.

“The reason why they do that is a mystery to man,

“But I’ve a shrewd suspicion that it’s just to show they can.”


I feared I had offended him, my question had been crude,

But a treble double whisky put him in a better mood.

“And tell me of your colleagues, whose work is so essential,

“That I might dare approach them with demeanour reverential.”


“Right across Observer the subs are brilliant, off the scale,

“The Times can only dream of such – and fuck the Daily Mail.

“But even with such talents, sir, once the story’s in the queue

“And is eighty-six lines over, what magic can you do?”


The old sub smiled and shook his head as if he were amused

At meeting one so young and green and easily confused.

“Nothing is writ that can’t be cut, that is the Subbing Law,

“Give me the Ten Commandments and I’ll trim them back to four.


“Thou shalt not miss the deadline, or write in ‘Subs please check’,

“And if perchance you use a fact, don’t get it round your neck.

“But the first of all commandments you must follow to the letter:

“However good your copy is, a sub can make it better.”


“And yet,” I ventured cautiously, “can what they say be true?

“I’ve heard tell that the management wants to get rid of you.”

”’Tis true,” the gloomy sub replied, now glugging down red wine,

“They got rid of the NGA, now we’re the next in line.


“But mark my words, young journalist, the cup they drink is bitter,

“Mistakes will sprout like dandelions and literals will litter.

“Comment it may still be free, but faith in facts will shatter,

“Whatever garbage fills the space, that’s all that’s going to matter.


“And there will come a day, I fear, when one sub shall remain,

“Facing those damned accountants and battling in vain.

“He’ll stand astride the subs’ desk like that Dutch boy at the dyke,

“Until, professional to the last, he falls upon his spike.


“And as those bastards stand and jeer, a golden age shall cease,

“But not before his dying words: ‘Has the lawyer seen this piece?’

“They’ll bury him with honours, even Murdoch will be there,

“FoC will read the Lesson, Rev Indent will say the prayer.


“Good Spot will start the banging out, as flags fly at half mast,

“A choir of solemn hacks will sing ‘Oh Sub, our help in ages past’.

“And in the years that follow that tragic last defeat

“You’ll find the Tomb of Unknown Sub in St Bride’s upon the Street.


“On either side shall angels weep, and proudly in between

“You will see a pencil, blue, crossed with an eyeshade, green,

“And on Carrara marble, carved in ninety-six point caps,

“You’ll read subs’ eternal question: ‘Who wrote this piece of crap?’


Semper Vigilans