My United States of Whatever
It's an early Easter this year. The weather is great - hot and sunny. And in this West Auckland internet cafe children and teenagers are packed in playing stupid fucking war games. "Fire in the hole!" Tweuhh, ea, ea, ea, ea, ea, ea, chick-chick, pweechhh! Go outside.
I took a walk through Heron Park yesterday - on God's day, Jesus' execution day. It's between Waterview and Avondale and has been saved from dissection by the decision to run the SH20 motorway to the Pt Chev junction. The weather was even better then, and when the three picnickers left it was just me there. A big parkland with wide paths and views and only used by one person. Where is everyone? Where are the kids? I even found an eel in the stream. In olden days, before mindlessly violent networked computer games, Sky TV, molly-coddling parents with 4WDs, obesity etc. the kids would be harassing these eels and climbing the trees and exploring the mangroves and throwing rocks at each other. Playing soldier meant physically doing it - physicaly recreating combat scenarios on the ground, not staring at a monitor tapping buttons and clicking at a mouse. Then again we had dirty quarries, council depots and abandoned war installations instead of sanitised exercise areas, OSH-approved recreational facilities and ultra-padded certified play equipment. Enjoying your youth seems to be an old man's game these days.
My suggestions for a new holiday format for a republic, I am reminded, would have Easter replaced by Autumn Festival which is on the last Friday of March and would also be the start of daylight savings, ie. this coming Friday. I stand by that. It's still to summery. As for Daylight Savings - has Peter Dunne moved it to June?
Memo to Ben Thomas:
Re: Bet - Will Taiwan compete at the Beijing Olympics?
Yes. They have their own Olympic committee:
In the Olympic Games opening ceremony, when each country normally proceeds in alphabetical order, Chinese Taipei do not follow China, but instead take a place in the procession as if their name were Taipei...