Skip to main content


Showing posts from 2021

Happy Lens Flare

Coloured event people again but it's the big smiley lens flare that's get it a place in the Daily Photos album .

Don't Say You Have A Bomb

It's not funny. Although it can be, sometimes, but knowing the audience is key to a successful delivery ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Cheers Tauranga

Heads Watching

It's a glorious sight to see a large event space full to the brim and lit beautifully.

A Moment in NZ Technology Politics

It's rare to be present at the moment a 'political scandal' (media words, not mine) starts on its public journey ending up with a Ministerial resignation and ructions in a whole industry. But there we were, filming the Derek Handley speech as he laid out what he saw a Government CTO appointee should apply themselves to. As someone on the night whispered to me, "I just heard, "And I like to announce my nomination to the position of ...", without him actually saying the words 😜

Tui painting

Tui painting / print at the AirBnB the three of us stayed at for our Auckland leg of the Techweek TV 2018 tour.

The Iconic Access Granted Photo

"Suit up", was a term Raj and I used on the 2017 Access Granted NZ Road Trip as we popped on the famous red t-shirts before introducing ourselves to the latest venue. In 2018 as we prepared for the first ever broadcast of Techweek TV Raj suited up a la Superman style and the photo was snapped 👍


My first ever nickname was Smiler, coz I squinted in the blazing Swaziland sun . But I digress, and so early. "The greatest spy author", or words to that effect have been bouncing around my feeds for a while now. I finally popped over to Wikipedia and discovered that there were a number of Smiley books written by John le Carré (as his pen name has it). "But they're tedious, and slow, and about olden days and the Cold War", I thought as I borrowed the first one, Call For The Dead (1961) from the Wellington City Library - god I love Libby ! Well bugger me with a bestseller it's bloody good, I was hooked by 'page' 3 and can't stop reading it now. A classic whodunnit with a massive dollop of whydunnit as le Carré takes me on an all enveloping journey with his incredible writing. I s'pose all those awards and opinions weren't built on nothing after all. I'll let you know who and why dunnit later, once I've read all the books 😜 In

The Haunting Of Jacinda

It's well known here in New Zealand that Jacinda Ardern is not in fact alive and has been a ghost since the late 1920s. Despite this she is still more popular than anything the opposition can muster. She is seen here haunting one of Auckland's popular theatres, a regular spot to catch a sighting.

Death In The UK

There was a widely reported death in the UK recently, here's a few NewsBiscuit headlines for you ... Queen Sells Up And Moves To Ibiza DofE Awards now worthless Queen tears up telegram she was going to send on 10 June. Financially independent tiara-wearing horse lover. Seeks similar Royal Christmas cards for 2021 sent back to the printers Philip dead – Meghan to blame says Mail

Shedunnit podcast

Another in my "these are the podcasts I'm currently enjoying , maybe you will as well" series. Shedunnit , ("The podcast that unravels the mysteries behind classic detective stories") written and presented by Caroline Crampton , is a sheer delight and one I look forward to each week. I have thought a few times that maybe the Golden Age of Detective Fiction isn't a subject that's going to sustain this podcast past a few episodes but Caroline just keeps coming up with novel (!) and engaging ways to not only look at the stories themselves, but the authors, the times, and how it all connects with us listening today. I find Shedunnit to be a perfect dinner prep podcast with each self contained episode informative, engaging, and reflective of the subject itself - that intro music for example! Brilliantly Caroline puts up the transcripts of each episode, something I wish we had done on Access Granted NZ , ho hum.

Woman With Longest Fingernails Gets Them Cut After 29 Years

I've been blogging since 2004 and it didn't take long for a post to consistently hit the number one spot, " The worlds longest fingernails - something for Jack ". I don't know why, I don't know how but it is always my most read post by a country mile. I even decided to update it in 2019 as the the photos no longer worked, and many of the links had broken. Today I was served up the following headline Woman with the world's longest nails cuts them after nearly 30 years Ayanna Williams of Houston broke the Guinness World Record for the world's longest fingernails in 2017, when they measured nearly 19 feet long. It took her more than two bottles of nail polish and 20 hours to do her manicure then. Before getting them cut over the weekend, she got one final measurement: 24 ft, 0.7 in. That manicure took three to four bottles of nail polish over the course of a few days. Williams got the task done at a dermatology office in Fort Worth, Texas, where an electr

Theatre Lights

I can't remember if this is backstage, a public concourse, or what, but it's at the Auckland ASB Waterfront Theatre. Lit up like a Christmas tree eh.

We Are Go For Liftoff

Auckland Sky Tower as seen from the suburb of Freemans Bay, quite spectacular isn't it. You can jump off it if you have the money.

Auckland Airport

Air NZ domestic terminal entrance at Auckland Airport. 


Ripples in the land and on the water.

Gorgeous Hertford Canal

From a mate in the UK, he sure does make pretty videos eh - top work Andy.  

Wellingtown Ahoy

Not a bad looking city centre eh.

Quiz Time!

Yes, it's that time of the year and it's QUIZ TIME! What does it say on the t-shirt across my moobs? First prize: the warm inside feeling of knowing you're a better human being than most others. Leave your answers in the comments below ...

Mr. Cholmondley-Warner IRL

I'm sure you've seen the Harry Enfield sketches in which Mr. Cholmondley-Warner and his manservant Greyson parody 1930/40s English public improvement films by asking you to "Look At It This Way" and "Look Listen & Take Heed". Just the titles give you a hint at how it all goes, " The Working Class ", " A short film about that Mr Hitler ", " The Conjugal Rights Guide ", and my favourite, " Women: Know Your Limits! " Imagine my ... delight ... horror ... and jaw drop, when this was served up by the machines, an actual in real life "Mr. Cholmondley-Warner" with a 1940s 'instructional film'. It's, well, it's quite something and the aggressive approach from the 'teacher' will have your eyebrows raised. How To Improve Immigrants' English (1940s Instructional Film) [HD]. Originally called '48 Paddington Street', British Pathe issued this as a cinema newsreel in the 1940s, alth

Kids Sports

You may be lucky enough to have a kid that's sporty and wants to join up to various sporting ventures during their formative years. There is a meme that is passed down generation by generation that is summed up by saying that the weekend is gone because of it,  or youre just a taxi for the kids sports. It's akin to the, "My child is in the terrible twos", or, "I hear he's gonna be a teenager next year, good luck".  The myths and stories we pass on and the world we create around our kids are some of the biggest hurdles they have to break through.  Of course breaking the cycle is VERY VERY HARD! Anyway, I always enjoyed watching my kids play sport. I love the drive there and back, and the chatter no matter what the score.

She Can Code

Big ups to Victoria MacLennan for her many years of advocating and working for women already in and, more importantly, thinking about coming into the tech industry. I still have my #SheCanCode t-shirt (photo taken in May 2018) but it's now a bed-shirt, although on the odd day I'm in the mood I'll wear it out, the message still needs to be heard eh!

The Man Who Didn't Fly

One of my feeds suggested The Man Who Didn't Fly  as worthy of a read and being a sucker for a good crime novel I was in. The author, Margot Bennett , has a glorious turn of phrase, an almost modern feel despite being published in 1955. People fall in love and they die, and no amount of poetic advice has ever helped them to do either of those things more successfully.  They are interested in love for a few years, and later they are afraid of death. But they are always interested in money. Everyone, everywhere is interested in money all the time. There’s never been an age when people agreed so heartily to be interested all at once in the same thing. They’re crazy about money, even if it’s only to buy a bar of chocolate or a diamond necklace. She also has a wicked humour placed in the mouths of her characters. 

Build For Tomorrow podcast

Working with people alongside the tech they use has me working in change and for what is often perceived a 'better tomorrow'. I found Build For Tomorrow podcast during my research on this are when it was called Pessimists Archive (a terrible name and luckily they recently changed). The host, Jason Feifer, has an extremely engaging tone and it's not just the subject matter but the ways he comes at it with enthusiasm and curiosity that I love. (writing this post had me visit the podcast official website and there at the bottom are the sponsors with Charles Koch Foundation listed, hmmm!)

Random Text To A Stranger

The idea flowed past me on the feed recently, I shared it with mates and we had a giggle. Yesterday I was in the bus heading into work and noticed someone had scrawled their/someones mobile number on one of the QR notices. It worked a treat. There's a tonne of these out there, some are very very funny ...

Stately Pictures

It's a wonderful cinema and venue to hang out in.


Wall decoration at The Embassy, I think.

Slartibartfast Country

Slartibartfast would love The Sounds: "Did you ever go to a place…I think it was called Norway?” “No,” said Arthur, “no, I didn’t.” “Pity,” said Slartibartfast, “that was one of mine. Won an award, you know. Lovely crinkly edges. I was most upset to hear of its destruction."

Up She Goes

I am always fascinated just how far up into the sky very tall people can lift other very tall people.

The Wonkshop

Ok, so it's not quite the "Wankshop" that I read in actual real life, but it's definitely the "Wonkshop" 😜

Everything Is Awesome

As I have expressed previously these old British Pathé video clips , especially the colour ones from the 1950s and 60s, are most spectacularly hilarious and this one stands tall and proud amongst them. Everything about it is awesome, the subject matter, the clothes, the 'actors', the multiple music choices that were made, the narration, the film colouring, the ... everything, everything about it is awesome  Can you imagine making such a movie these days, well imagine no more as you could never make something with the sheer comedic genius as the original. Enjoy

No Such Thing As A Fish podcast

Discovery is always the issue with da Internet, just so much stuff. Which is why Google and Facebook are such behemoths, one let's you find stuff by intent and the other by what your friends think. Podcasts are a whole different issue being audio and therefore not 'static' text or images. For some reason Google is pretty good at finding video for you, probably coz it owns YouTube and has a long time to work on it. Audio and radio feels like it should be easier, it's just words. Anyway, podcasts that you might like can be a bloody hard job to find, and so here's one I think you might like. No Such Thing As A Fish is a massively popular offshoot from the long running QI BBC TV series discussing four interesting facts and delving deep whilst having a laugh on the way. The weekly podcast is hosted by four QI Elves, Dan Schreiber, Anna Ptaszynski, Andrew Hunter Murray, and James Harkin.  And the name, well the podcast name comes from a fact as seen in Series H of the

Edwardian Death

Gothic eh, gotta love a bit of middle-class death angst.


Whenever I've visited Nelson the view across the water has always been one of rest and peace. Just looking at this I take a deep breathe, smile, and let it all out.

Nelson Boogie Woogie

Sometimes life is about being near a piano in the late morning sun and listening to pure talent.

Some Days Are Like This

I believe this is a detail of something at the Department Of Internal Affairs head office in Wellington. More Pakeha Māori gloss, perhaps.

Andy Zaltzman

April 2018 and a second gig, this time the most awesome satirist/comedian Andy Zaltzman who you may heard hosting the most excellent news bullshit & pun driven The Bugle podcast .

If You Put A Finger In Your Ear And ...

If you put a finger in your ear and scratch you hear the sound of Pacman. Ha ha ha ha. Love it! A random fact from Sally Phillips via QI .

In His Element

Access Granted podcast allowed Raj and I to meet so so many amazing people, visit parts of the country we wouldn't have otherwise, and to do things that reminded us of our youth. It's weird being interviewed, and now we know what it feels like, through being  B Side Stories  guests hosted by the very cool  Laura Keown   as heard on the  Wellington Access Radio  and as a podcast. Here's Raj behind their mixing desk and loving it.

That Time Adam Understood About 50%

Back in April 2018 John Cooper Clarke toured AoNZ and my mate Adam and I went along to St Peter's Anglican Church ... I know, a gig in a church, was a most excellent venue. Now, for anyone that doesn't know of John Clarke he's a Salford comic poet harking back to UK punk in the 1970s. So there we were with Adam never having heard of this dude, certainly never seen any of his material , and no idea what was about to happen to his ears. John Clarke has a very thick Mancunian accent and does his poems at light speed. Adam says he got about 50% of it 👍

It's Been Done Before

I do love this photo of me, not just because of the awesome photograph itself, the gorgeous subject, but more for the memory of where it was amongst so so many others on the Photonflux wall.

One Year Ago She Joined Us

It was the weekend of AoNZ going into COVID lockdown that Meg and I had decided to go and get a cat for the home. We'd been talking about having a pet for a while, I'd like a tortoise but they're so expensive here. Maybe some fish, but I would want a full aquarium and that was also an expensive set up. I'm not allowed to have a dog in this house, one of only two rules the owners have, fair enough. So up to the Mt Vic SPCA we tootled. "I want an older cat", I said to Meg as we wandered in.  There were only three older cats, and I immediately liked the quiet ginger one. We popped to the office, signed the forms, paid the money, got the feed, and we were driving away with a ginger cat in a box. Meg and I renamed her Gladys just seconds before she took up a safe position under the bath for the next few days. She ran away, she fell from the mezzanine, she leapt off the deck, and she ran away again. She was all over Meg but was definitely wary of me and hadn't

UK War Memorial

It's a brilliant concept executed really well: At almost five metres tall, the design takes the form of two of the United Kingdom and New Zealand’s most iconic trees. The trunks of a Royal Oak and a Pōhutakawa intertwine to form one single leafy canopy, where leaves from both trees merge to create sense of shelter - giving the memorial its name: Whakaruruhau.  But here's the most wonderful part: Standing at the plaque, between the branches a silhouette of a single soldier can be seen ... I don't have a photo of that as I had no idea. Not yet anyways. [ quotes from Pukeahu National War Memorial Park, Ministry for Culture & Heritage ]

Imperial Was Imposing

The colonisers certainly used bricks and mortar to stamp their feelings all over the country. This is the old Dominion Museum in Wellington and if it doesn't scream, "We are the power here!" then I don't know what does. A museum holding all the trinkets of what the old world was and what the new world is to be - I remember going there back in 1992 and it stunk of old and traditional, hated it.

Becoming A Kiwi

I remember when I became a Kiwi on 15th August 2005 and the smile on Jenns face is an exact copy of what I had back then. I still marvel at how lucky I've been settling in AoNZ.

The Hand Of NZTech

NZTech is an advocacy /  organisation (like NZRise  and ITP) based on membership fees and running sponsored and ticketed events - Tech Week and NZ Hi-Tech Awards are their most visible examples. They also have an ever growing number of "alliances", which tbf many I have a lot of respect for. During our time hosting Access Granted NZ we had a number of interactions with NZTech with creating Tech Week TV as  probably the major one.  It's interesting that Tech Week is an event that no longer truly supports the non-Auckland or major government agencies - lost it's way perhaps. Ask me why, I can tell you what I think 👍  However, back in 2018 we were all over it  coz back then it was run by community people both nationally and in Wellington.

Jools Topp

She's an amazing wahine in all ways, it's a pleasure to live in the same country as her and her sister. Role models for so many and for a multitude of reasons. Let the winds of heaven be that which flies between your horses ears

Let's assume you are COVID

 Now what?

Welcome To Your Food

Welcome to the Seashore Cabaret.

Christchurch Airport Colours

The ever changing colours of the Christchurch Airport terminus is very pleasing to the eye. The coloured air traffic control building brings forth a smile upon the face as well.