Showing posts from 2017

'Tis the season to be jolly (2017 version)

( 2016 version |  2005 version ) So, Christmas is coming and I'm starting to get into the spirit and I'm getting the "What We Need To Have Happen To Make It Feel Like Christmas" list circulated, verified, commented on and ratified by the occupants of chez Riversdale on Christmas Day - so far it's looking something like this And from this year we've moved on from a static blog post to a living Riversdale document - watch as the kids add in weird ass stuff and then the parental units remove them.

The 2017 'Days Of Christmas'

  Keeping this blog's  tradition  going, this is my Yuletide posting about all that you should know for Christmas. But let's just take a moment in the busy day to remember what it's all about - the people you love. I'm thinking of the people you love right now ... are you thinking of mine? Of course, it's not just about family and friends (if that's who I was thinking of) but also presents, alcohol and oodles of sitting around in the sun (hardy har har Northern Hempishpereans!). If Jesus is you thing, I mean, if he's your bag, what you're into man then do the religious thing as well. Just don't get all "God" over Christmas and try to remember that it was  originally a pagan festival  around the longest day, certainly don't want you Christians foisting your ideas on people and trying to subvert the real message! Fun. that's the real message. Believe in Father Christmas (who shats all over Santa) and have too much laughter

Your Pets Deserve The "Jack And Meg Care Treatment" Over The Holidays

Let us care for your Miramar Peninsula pets over Christmas and New Year! Jack and Meg will pop round, feed and give a loving hug / stroke / smile to your precious pets over the Christmas and New Year allowing you to have your holiday in peace and comfort knowing it’s all sorted at home. For a mere $10 per visit they will ensure your pets have the holiday you’d want for them as well as taking in your mail. Want your garden watered, sure, just ask and they can. Jack has finished 1st year at Wellington High and is happy to take the love he has for his own cat to your pets (he's doing it because money can be exchanged for goods and services) Meg, who has finished her 1st year at EBIS, is kind and loving with all animals and is looking forward to meeting your special pet. (she’s not quite sure what she’ll spend the money on, but knows it won't be on fizzy or lollies) Give Liz Riversdale (Mum) a call on 021-252 3234 to book in your loved pets until 4 Jan

I didn’t know I had OCD…


Ahoy Hoy

I open all my written chats (Messenger, Allo, text, even some emails) with "Ahoy hoy" ... coz it makes me laugh. Where the fark did I get it from ... The Simpsons and specifically Mr Burns But really this, as read in  Wikionary : In the 1870s, Scottish-born inventor Alexander Graham Bell did much development for the newly-invented telephone. Bell's preferred salutation, ahoy-hoy was derived from the nautical term "Ahoy" which in its turn is derived from Dutch "hoi" meaning "hi". and so ... A recent resurgence in the popularity of the term has resulted from its use by The Simpsons character Montgomery Burns , who often answers the telephone with the greeting of "Ahoy-hoy." The use of the now-defunct ahoy-hoy, instead of the standard " hello ", is a running joke referring to Mr. Burns' very advanced age.

There IS Depression In New Zealand - More Of Me

The following are raw answers to "feature" questions asked of me by a mate as she completes a journalism course - I hope I can share the final result with you. In the meantime, here's me from the inside. 1) About you - who you are, what you do, background and what led you to NZ and to become what you are now in the tech industry? My name is Mike Riversdale, although some may know me by my online nickname/handle/alter ego of Miramar Mike, and you knew me way back when as Mike Boyle … oh the fun we have with names eh. I do an eclectic bunch of stuff, mostly these days I focus on connecting people, explaining stuff and getting things done. I generally do this with and on the boundaries of the “tech” world by producing events and co-hosting and publishing a weekly podcast called Access Granted NZ. In the past I worked more traditionally inside the tech world for large companies, government agencies and towards the end of that phase of my life with start-ups and sta

61 Ministerial Positions In The New Zealand Government

And here there are in order of Most are inside the cabinet, some are out - I don't know which will be which in the newly appointed 2017+ Government. Prime Minister Minister of National Security and Intelligence Deputy Prime Minister Minister of State Services Minister for Women Minister of Tourism Minister of Police Minister for Climate Change Issues Minister of Finance Minister of Infrastructure Minister of Foreign Affairs Minister for Economic Development Minister of Transport Minister for Communications Minister of Justice Minister for Courts Minister for Social Housing Minister of Health Minister for Sport and Recreation Attorney General Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister of Immigration Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety Minister for ACC Minister for Children Minister for Social Development Minister of Local Government Minister for Primary Industries Minister of Ci

MMP: Don't Let Yourself Be Split

This perfectly valid MMP result is still confusing and clearly "unfair", "gamed", or "bulshit" as it causes a lot of anger amongst many. It will take time for the FPP mentality to fade away and so be kind to those struggling with this change. It is NOT a competition, despite what anyone will tell you - there are no winners or losers, there is a bunch of people sitting in Parliament trying to work out how to ensure NZ is safe, prosperous and fair. Check out the Committee work to see how Parliament truly works and not the bun fight at PM Question Time or the hangers-on "reporting". And definitely don't pay credence to anyone that is blinded by dogma. If you are goaded into a "them" vs "us" discussion question where people are putting the split - Miramar v Wellington, South Island v North Island, union v league, urban v country, people v companies, humanity v aliens, you v the person, gang v gang, male v female ... Find

Me too

It's no use being called brave, as I was recently, unless I do things that make my breathing shallow, my chest tight and my heart race a little. As many of you will have seen on  Facebook , and on  Twitter  and possibly many other on-line places, there is a LOT of "Me too" posts from women. These are women from all walks of life, all ages, all work types, all economic circumstances, in or out of relationships, and from all over the world. That's what I'm seeing from my friends on Facebook, so I know. In fact, as I look at that FB search, it's almost EVERY SINGLE WOMAN I am FB friends with. Every. Single. One. The "Me too" posts come in light of the amazing women who have recently called out a powerful movie producer for disgusting behaviour towards them and other women. It is not a one-off though. with previous reports of repulsive behaviour going back decades including people at the BBC, comedians on TV, US Presidents and I'm sure in the

Miramar's Entrance NEEDS The Pillars of Argonath

Not just wants, but NEEDS! Been banging on about this since 2008 ;) This scene ... ... could look awesome, like this (thanks JR) ... ... as seen in the Miramar-made Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring.

VoteCompass - Will It Sway Me?

So, I've done Policy from SpinoffTV and On The Fence , so let's give VoteCompass from TVNZ a whirl - It's simple, if quite intrusive, just click through a stack of questions rating them on a scale, then rate the parties and leaders, check the results, fiddle with the weightings and voila, yet another picture of who they think I will be voting for ... but we know who I'll be voting for eh, Paul Eagle (Labour) for the Rongotai Electorate and Greens with my Party Vote. "Intrusive Mike, how so?" - they ask quite a bit about yourself, age, where you live (by postcode) and anything else you want to give them - all voluntary and you don't have to do it! They will even accept your Twitter handle if you want which totally puts who you voted for last time and who will vote for this time (if you tell them) as public record ... This is me after all that ...

Death Spam

Been a very long time since I looked in my email Spam folder and whilst a lot of it is just tedious the following did make me grin, enjoy. Highlights include the amount, "$10.800`000'00USD" which I think they are saying is $1,498,543,340.40 New Zealand dollars but who can tell with all that crazy use of special characters. One billion, 498 million, 543 thousand, 3 hundred and 40 dollars. And 40 cents. Is my "TOTAL FUNDS" I wish! Also their loving words to me, "MAY YOUR GENTLE SOUL REST IN PERFECT PEACE. ", and the fact that "Christine smith" uses a lowercase whilst being the "DIRECTOR OF (IMF)" (oh, it was all in UPPERCASE and I have no idea why :) Subject: YOUR SILENT IS A CLEAR PROOF THAT YOU ARE REAL DEAD From:  Christine smith DEAR VALUED CUSTOMER, I NEED TO CONFIRM THAT THIS IS REALLY TRUTH BEFORE WE RELEASE YOUR TOTAL FUNDS TO THIS GENTLE MAN. THIS OFFICE WAS CONTACTED BY Mr. Richards Thomas WHO  CLAIMED T

On The Fence - Another Election 2017 Help Site

A lot easier to do (and therefore likely to be a lot more simplistic in it's results) than Policy site - see my " Emotion Or Policy - I Will Vote Greens (Party) And Paul Eagle, Labour (Electorate) " post for more on that. This site asks a series of questions to which you use a slider to answer between 2 opposite options before stating how important the subject is. Check it out at: And so me, according to the website: Quite different than the other site eh:

Emotion Or Policy - I Will Vote Greens (Party) And Paul Eagle, Labour (Electorate)

As I write this I see no reason not to change my vote from what I thought I was going to do a year ago -   Greens (Party) And Paul Eagle, Labour (Electorate). I'll be honest, before Jacinda Ardern became leader I was umming and ahhhing about Labour but am now comfortable with my decision. Oh, and any non-Kiwi's who are wondering why I get to vote twice, we have MMP here - it's MUCH fairer than FPP, check it out (video) . BUT, is this just an emotional / feeling-based decision on my part? Yes, of course it is ... but hey, let's go find out using The SpinOff's most excellent "Policy" sub-site: As they they explain , all the main parties available policies have been chopped up, summarised and placed together so you can compare and contrast each in 10 areas - economy , education , environment , health , housing , incomes , justice , migration , te ao Māori , and transport . Each section is split into subsections

Dry July 2017 - I Won

I was warned that the first week would be the hardest and so it proved to be ... so much so that after my first post I completely forgot about Dry July, didn't have a beer (or wine, or any alcohol) for the rest of the month whilst not caring a jot. Having 2 weeks of sheer hell with illness helped. The Cancer peeps got just over $500 (our of a grand total of $385,189) which, whilst being only half of what I was hoping for, is bloody frigging awesome of everyone that donated their own hard cash to strangers. Thank you call so much. And yes, you CAN DONATE still .. . (Oh, special shoutout to Owen who not only did his own Dry July but bought a golden ticket for me so that I could have a beer (I had 3) during the final All Blacks v Lions test :) Has it worked - do I feel better about myself? Yes. I am much more conscious of drinking alcohol and I notice myself when I want a beer and not ust dive straight on in. Let's not forget that I'm no alcoholic and so I am doing th

1st Week, Dry July, Tough

It's been a fascinating first week of my Dry July adventure which, combined with giving up smoking (YET! AGAIN!), has lead to some terse conversations but much better health. First of all - go give some money to the Cancer peeps (whether you think my adventure of interest to you or not) as no-one choose to have cancer. $50 is a good and popular amount but anything helps them and their families. For me not having alcohol has had a number of changes, mostly internal. I definitely find I have more time on my hands and, of an evening, find myself wandering the living room wondering what to do with my hands as I watch the bears. Funny eh, i obviously use alcohol to avoid myself a tad. Also, catching up with people has been one of, "No, sorry, can't do that" as they invite me for a quick beer after work. Of course, I could go into a bar and not have a beer ... possible, but I need to break the habit a bit more first and become a conscious drinker. I reckon another week.

Anger & Depression, A Year With My Fine Friends

Over the past week two people have reached out and asked, "How are you doing Mike?", one was a Monmouth school friend from way back and another someone I used to work with here in Wellington ... aren't people just awesome. To answer that question I have had to stop and think as we don't allow, "Good" as an answer in the house. Not that it stops the kids saying it everyday we ask, "How was your day?" ... and yes, we know, it's a dumb question just begging for such an answer but we've not got into the habit of asking any of these just yet ... we try though. So, how am I? And how have I been since last year, "Depression & Anger: 2 More Things" ? In essence I am very good (!). The meds I take do the job of alleviating the crippling anxiety and desire to hide beneath the duvet every waking hour. Although, we've discovered that they do make me extremely tired and I used to struggle to make it through the day without a

How To Stream The Rugby (Even Though It's Still A Bloody Palaver)

I've never been a Sky fan and certainly don't want to add to the monopoly of broadcasting of our essential sports (being a Welshman in New Zealand I am a bit passionate about rugby) - that's a philosophical stance less a commercial decision. Having said that, HOW EXPENSIVE could they make it , madness. In years past I have always trawled the Internet looking for illegal streams of games but they are harder to find now and almost always try and infect or scam you so it's not something I'd recommend to anyone. So what to do? Pub, sure, but I don't want to drink all the time Mates houses, yeah, but not on school nights Pay for a stream, but how? And then RugbyPass entered my life - for a cost, which is fine, as I say I'm happy to pay, just don't want to pay to a monopoly or through the nose! High quality, legal rugby streaming ... if you're outside of SANZAR . I am inside of SANZAR, so a wee bit of jiggery-pokery still required (even

Mike Meets The Mayors

Today, thanks to the "very down to earth" (Mr14's description) Justin Lester, Mayor of Wellington City , ( @justin_lester ) I ticked off a bucket list item that has had me giggling for over a year. First, the backstory. Back in 1986, or maybe 1991, I was working at St Ivel , a butter/yogurt company in headquartered in Swindon (UK) . For some reason that is now lost in the mists of my mind the then Mayor of Swindon* paid a visit to the St Ivel offices and there is a glorious photo of my showing him and Lady Mayoress (together with Nigel and ... the other woman I worked with) how my extravagant 20MB PC would green-screen into the mainframe and run EPS programs ... or was it the wonders of Lotus 1-2-3. My olds boss, Lorie , recalled she was thinking, "Just don't say anything inappropriate Mike, please!" - some things never change eh :) Fast forward 30 years and I'm in Wellington (NZ) and that black-and-white photo pops up into my life! I immediat