Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Friday, February 4, 2011
Elected to High Office
I took a brand new pen
And tore a sheet of paper from my pad.
I did not have to ponder the 100 things to do.
That would make those who put their trust in me
Feel justified and glad.
First thing that I wrote
Was: Make a list.
Then: Set up a committee,
To make sure that nothing’s missed.
Those were two quite simple things to do.
Missions easily accomplished.
Must not let my attention wander
So again I wrote.
Check the list.
This job is easy.
And to the end I went and added.
Read the list.
Four done and only ninety six to go.
So I set up ten committees.
Counting each one twice.
(The times that they would meet)
My list has now reached twenty three.
That’s really rather neat
Then: give councillors a job.
That’s one for each committee chair
And my list is looking pretty.
At thirty three I’m one third there.
How easy can this be?
Of course committees all have members.
Another fifty folk made happy.
My list is now at eighty plus
The things I’m going to do are looking pretty snappy.
Then: Check my desk
So easily done
And count the ten things on it.
And put my name up on the door
Its now up to ninety five, nearly to the magic ton.
Well ninety six if I count the reading note.
Go to the loo
The things I do are now nearly at one hundred - Whoo!
The last must be something memorable
To make it certain I’m recalled.
Something to confirm my date with History’s Great.
My name in golden letters upon the Honour Wall.
Acknowledging the plans I laid
The struggles and the visions planned.
The smiles, the photo ops the handshakes never missed.
Divinely guided without a pause I penned:
Never forget the day you wrote this list.
Saturday, January 29, 2011
Thursday, January 27, 2011
It has always troubled and puzzled me that Auckland is such a toxic environment for Heritage. Not only do heritage buildings stand here in constant danger of obliteration, but there sometimes seems to be an active conspiracy to demolish them without debate.
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Auckland City has just invested $70 million in upgrading its art gallery.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
December 1st is a date we dread at our house. The Franklin Road Christmas lights turn on that night. They are a drag to put up and a greater drag to get the timers right. Then there is three weeks of struggling with a suburban footpath with the foot traffic of a shopping mall. A nightmare of fighting off huskers and amplified bands and this year PlayStation who see the generosity of the householders as a marketing device and the families who see the fences put up to protect the grass verges as a jungle gym or a VIP enclosure for their benefit.
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
The idea being floated by the chair and board members of Te Papa that they should spend $100 million of our money to build a new National Art Gallery, next door to the one that they already spent $300 million on and got wrong, would be a grand joke if it were not outrageous. The Dominion Post floats the argument that since they [Te Papa] have struggled to make their museum fit the "role of a national art gallery" they have had to stick the art the attic and should now be allowed to build a real national art gallery.
Sunday, November 14, 2010
I have been re-reading D'Arcy Cresswell's Present Without Leave with the notion in mind that I might write something on what we have become. There was an enormous amount of speculation about New Zealand's future from the late 'thirties to the mid-fifties and I thought I might revisit all that and see how wildly wrong or savagely right they were. Cresswell seems so much on the button that he is worth quoting - what a contemporary ring has his commentary on how and why we pass laws and what we then think of them:
Friday, November 5, 2010
I have often wondered - in private thought and on the record - where and why our committee culture began. When did we deliver ourselves up to agenda and issues and going forward and setting the date for the next meeting. When did meeting become a substitute for doing and the minutes of the last meeting replace reflective thought?
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Last month was one in which I was truly ashamed to be a New Zealander.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Nobody can be in any doubt that governance at the Auckland Museum has collapsed.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
The Tino Rangitaratanga flag is the right choice for the Maori flag. In fact what other choice could there have been. It was the only contender that represented Maori alone. The Red Ensign despite the fact that Queen Victoria handed it out to tribes who had taken the colonial side in the Land Wars was always a nutty contender.
The 1835 original New Zealand flag - aka the flag of the United Tribes - was also a non starter. It is THE New Zealand flag and not just a part of New Zealand flag. It is the flag that originally represented us all - a sovereign and independent nation in nobody's thrall.
Monday, November 16, 2009
Auckland has some glaring deficiencies in the live theatre department.
Friday, November 13, 2009
Friday, November 6, 2009
Now the nonsense has been dumped will enlightenment follow on Queens Wharf.