2nd Feb 2012 is the 5th Annual Hug A Gay Day.
For more details please see my previous posts on this, well worth a read (IMHO):
And to recap:
- Anyone can hug a gay today (best to ask 1st)
- Gay guys hugging gay guys is OK – but you do that anyway right? So its more about str8 mates hugging you to show how cool and modern and metro (if they are a guy) they are.
- Self hugs don’t count (even if you are gay)
That is all.
Black and White Version: You can hug a gay any day, but especially on 2nd Feb.
I was emailed a link today, and asked to blog about it. 90% of the time I don’t, coz either the link is spam, or I don’t support the message being pushed.
Today was an exception. Here is a truly awesome gay short film.
WARNING SEXUAL THEMES (well more to the point, actual sex).
Today the NZ Herald reports that Pisa expert says Big Ben leaning. Using the text Monitoring instruments suggest the tower’s tilt has increased by about a centimetre a year since 2003 below a picture of the tower.
I am gonna call them on that one and say I can guarantee it’s not. How do I know this? Coz as anyone who’s done a tour of London knows Big Ben is NOT the clock tower, it’s the big bell inside it. So the headline should read Tower hosting Big Ben is on a lean says Pisa expert. (or something like it).
Sure, it doesn’t REALLY matter to 99% of people, and lots of people do call the tower Big Ben, BUT journalists do this for a job – this isn’t a twitter post, or a FaceBook status update. They need to do their homework.
End of rant.
Black and White Version: Sometimes Journalists are lazy. Sometimes that annoys me. Sometimes I blog about it.
Comedian Pam Ann crossed the line today in a rather stupid outburst on Facebook.
Known to have a HUGE gay following (I would estimate three quarters of her audience are gay, due to the theme of her work), and Pam make constant references to her gays during both her stage acts, and here regular FaceBook posts.
Today, in reference to Ryan Air’s new beds and blowjobs business class (link to Youtube if you wanna watch it) across the Atlantic (that’s Ryan Airs marketing for it!), Pam decided to be TRY to be funny and made the following post:
Blowjobs on Ryanair’s long haul business class I’d rather catch aids in Africa lol
I fully get that some humor will be offend some people, and I am all for pushing the boundaries, but this crossed the line. WAY over. And based on comments from those on FaceBook, many would agree.
Of course people can make mistakes. Comedians included. So LOTS comments asked Pam to delete the post, and apologise. I think the matter would have ended there.
But instead Pam left the post up, and clearly seeing the backlash from her gays, changed her profile picture to a rainbow flag.
Sorry Pam – this makes it worse. You clearly see the issue, but choose to try to make up for it by pretending to be gay friendly, when clearly you are EXTREMELY ignorant on both Aids, and in particular those in Africa who suffer from it.
So, this post is all about exposing Pam for who and what she is.
Black and White Version: Pam’s funny, but she needs to remember her core audience and how hurtful her ill-thought out comment was. When you’re a one trick pony, best not to p*ss off your audience. Apologise now Pam, please. (quoted directly from Tania on FaceBook)
Here they are, Richard’s black and white tips for the playing in the bedroom:
Before I start it’s best to clarify that some people may be offended by this post, some may not. Some might even be disappointed. Anyway, read on:
- Buy a duvet cover that has a patten on one side, and a plan colour on the other. That way you can find the corners easily when changing the cover.
- Buy a duvet cover and duvet one size bigger than the bed. Looks great, and means there is more duvet to share if you sleep with a duvet hog
- Drop the top sheet. Just get a fitted sheet and duvet. It means making the bed takes 20 seconds. It DOES mean you wash the duvet cover with the sheet, but that’s hardly a biggie.
- Only ever ever use natural fibres, preferably cotton, next to your skin. So that means sheets, duvet covers, and pillow cases.
- NEVER skimp on a bed. You spend almost a third of your life on one!
I told you some people might be offended. But I figure if you had a dirty mind you had already stopped reading. (When I said playing, what did you think I meant?).
Black and White Version: Setting up the bedroom linen is easy, but don’t skimp on $.
The idea was it was a group of businesses planning to set up an IT hub in the Christchurch CBD to help reinvigorate the city after the earthquake (remember most of the CBD is still off limits, and many businesses have moved out). Great idea I thought. But as I read on what struck me as amusing was the lack of a business sustainability here:
The IT business group, Enterprise Precinct and Innovation Campus (Epic), has asked the Christchurch City Council, which owns the 4000-square-metre block, to grant it site use for three years at no cost.
Anderson said the cost of setting up the IT campus would be substantial and the group had approached the Government for funding.
OK, so let’s get this clear: They want the council to give them free use of the land for 3 years, and the government to pay for the cost of setting it up?
Although it’s not all one sided:
Epic co-leader Colin Anderson, director of IT consultancy Effectus, said a cluster of IT companies would add much-needed vibrancy to the central city because IT workers were socialisers, had more disposable income than many people and were aligned to inner-city living.
I was wondering if I offered to move back to the CBD and buy my groceries there, would the Council give me free land, and the Government build me a house? Probably not.
Black and White Version: Sometimes I wish the media would actually analyse a story more that just printing an idea.
Richard’s black and white take on recent (earthquake) events:
- Ken Ring is wrong on earthquakes. He doesn’t know shit about the topic. He can’t predict earthquakes.
- Ken ring is quite good on weather prediction.
- To see more about both people really should READ Ken Ring’s web page (and read more than one paragraph!). See how Ring predicts a large earthquake around March 20th in the Culverdon and Amberly region (not Christchurch). See also how he predicts a major earthquake every week.
- John Campbell showed poor judgment when interviewing Ring (but he has apologised for it the next day).
- The whole discussion on tax increase to pay for the earthquake recovery (by politicians and the media) is premature and distasteful – now is not the time. DPF on KiwiBlog says this so much better!
- I find it interesting that people in Aranui Christchurch think they aren’t getting looked after coz they are in a poor suburb. They are wrong. Rich suburbs get the same treatment too. I live in Sumner (one of the hardest hit suburbs). I didn’t get power for a week (in the last 15% of the city to get it), I still have no water or sewerage, there are no portaloos on my street (in fact none for a km), and I haven’t seen a Red Cross, Council worker, or civil defense person yet. But I am OK with that. They are doing what they can. I can drive to a mate’s for a shower, candles and torches worked well for light. I could go on ….
- Things like power, showers, and running water are very easy to take for granted.
- Lost pets are one of the untold stories of this earthquake. Cats (and dogs, when fences fall down) run away.
- The best before and after pics on the earthquake are here
Oh, and here is the BEST story about the earthquake so far. A TradeMe auction of a rock (that hit someone’s house – image top right). The Q&A are priceless!
1. yes: my mains line that he went through, 2. nope – he is roll on roll off, 3. yep we are all okay thanks very much 8:38 am, Wed 2
Black and White Version: This Ken Ring is a nutter, John Campbell was rude, clean up is taking a while, but a great job is being done.
Well it you live outside Christchurch here are some ideas:
- If you can afford it, give money. Don’t sent stuff. We have water, we have clothes, we have food. If people are in need, they need money (and stuff requires massive co-ordination, especially if it’s perishable)
- Best place to send money is via Christchurch Earthquake Appeal or if you want to do it via your mobile phone in NZ, text QUAKE to 4419 for a $3 donation. This is one of those times you don’t need to ask the owner of the phone before sending the text <grin>
- If you can’t afford money, then send your wishes to people you know – but don’t ask for replies (unless they are close family). Just text, or email or FB message saying Thinking of you or something similar. It means a lot to so many.
- Avoid calling unless it’s urgent. Not only does it tie up the phone network, but people are busy sorting stuff out – homes or work, and sometimes don’t have time to chat.
- If your friends in Christchurch call you then ignore the above comment. They do have time to chat then!
- If you can, offer beds, showers, whatever you can for friends from Christchurch – many want to escape
- Change your FaceBook status, but know it doesn’t do anything. If it makes you feel better, go for it, but know it’s more about you, not us (just like those silly posts about Post this is if you know someone with cancer… doesn’t help anyone with cancer – donating money for research does though).
- Better than a Facebook update, is a personal message to friends or family in Christchurch, either to their wall, or a private message (my preference). Say something real and personal.
- Remember that stuff is just that. PEOPLE are what matters. Some people have lost friends, family, and almost every knows someone that has (or at the very least knows of someone). Be sensitive.
- Avoid posting random crap on FaceBook about not rebuilding Christchurch, or how it’s now unsafe. That may be your opinion, but keep it to yourself for now. Some people are very fragile, so just keep off those kinda topics for now
- Remember everyone reacts differently to these kinda of situations. Some will be calm, some will be frustrated, some will be an emotional wreck, and others will be angry. Some will use humour. These are all normal. Accept it.
PS: All donations in NZ over $5 are tax deductible.
Black and White Version: If you want to do something for people of Christchurch there are many ways, and not all of them involve money.
I have been living without power or water in the Christchurch suburb of Sumner for 5 days now. As I said in my earlier post on the quake, I am fine, but I have some thoughts to share from the experience thus far.
In no particular order:
- Christchurch West and East are like two different cities: In the west quite normal (supermarkets and petrol stations all go, I even saw a cafe with people in it). In the east not so (no power or water; basics is the name of the game here).
- A dishwasher is a great place to dry dishes when you run out of bench space
- Sumner is like a ghost town: I figure less than 20% of residents are left at the moment
- This is gonna take AGES to fix – so much destruction
- I think Ferry road was the worst hit road (not saying buildings, I mean the actual road surface)
- Some people drive too fast, but most people drive WAY too slow when traveling around. 20km/h is annoying (and yes, they are rubber necking looking at damage and taking photos from their cars)
- The sense of comradeship is amazing. From people being polite to one-another to neighbours checking in to see everyone is OK, to mates offering showers, rooms, food to their friends (and strangers) on FaceBook. Since I have power via a generator, I have thrown an extension cord over the fence for the neighbour – like me, they have a dog, so leaving isn’t that easy, and a fridge and freezer needs power! (Again like me, they have gas for cooking, and it’s summer, so heating isn’t an issue either). I figure it is the least I can do. They keep offering me water, and food and even bones for my dog. I am well stocked already though.
- Everyone copes with this in different ways; I remember seeing people crying outside the gym just after it happened – they were unhurt, but that was their way of coping I guess. Some cope by escaping. I think I cope by trying to do normal things – like walking the dog, or putting the rubbish out. Oh I also seem to cope by shopping (mind you I have so much broken stuff, I need to shop!). Yep, that’s me!
- Lots of people in Christchurch are drinking their best wine.
- It’s surprising the number of people who say I am out of here, and don’t plan to live in Christchurch again.
- Every now and again I feel guilty when I am sitting down and not fixing something or doing something (a new feeling)
- I want to go to the gym soon.
- Having a shower is one of life’s simple pleasures. When you haven’t had one for a day (or more), having one makes me feel human again
- Seeing portaloos dropped of by the dozen around your suburb means (1) I’ll have somewhere to go and (2) it’s gonna be a while b4 sewerage is back on
- I never realised how much water washing dishes takes (you notice it when you have bottled water from the supermarket as your only water!)
I have said it before, but I will say it again. Broken STUFF doesn’t matter. People do.
Stay safe, tell those you care for that you do.
Stay safe, tell those you care for that you do. Kia kaha Christchurch.
Black and White Version: Life isn’t returning to normal very quickly, but I am trying to speed it up a tad where I can.
PS: Big thanks to Glen T for proofreading this. You are a star!
As most will now know, Christchurch (my home town) had a major earth quake on Tuesday 22nd February 2011.
There are many great resources on the net, and I don’t intend to duplicate them, just tell my story.
(Aside: More typos than usual in this post I am sure. I just wanted to get it out there while I had the generator running.)
In case you are after more info here’s some great resource sites:
- GeoNet (shows quakes history, location, size etc)
- Canterbury Earthquake (up to date info for locals) Everything from water, to petrol station info, to updates on repairs.
- For Government Welfare/grants: Call 0800 77-99-97
There is also plenty of good news coverage:
- BBC World News
- Stuff.co.nz – latest quake info (great resource too). Aside: Pity their own reporters don’t read it before making up stories about food shortages!
- The Age (Australia) – lots of images
Anyway, what’s my story?
First and foremost, I am safe. My family is safe, my pets are even safe. Both my house, and where I work is very close to the epicenter of this quake. I live in Sumner, which was hit very hard. But luckily I live on a hill made out of rock, and a house made out of metal (yep I said metal, that’s what the walls are made of). So, while I had almost every glass, plate and bowl I own smashed, and motorbikes tipped over, and garage shelves emptied onto the floor, the house is fine, nothing structural that I can tell. No cracks even.
Still no power (although fixed that with a diesel generator), still no water through the taps (bottled water does the trick for now), so life is far from normal. Driving a trip to get something like food or petrol takes me 3 hours round trip (normally would be 15 min). Partly coz I need to go further (nothing on my side of town open yet), but mainly coz of major traffic jams, as so many roads are closed.
Work is a different story. Will be a MAJOR mess. Busted fish tank, computers everywhere (smashed) but looks like everything that is vital is still OK, and we hope to be back in their Monday, and back up and running (even if it is remotely) some time next week. Lucky we have UPS back ups for things like the alarm and other essential services. That will last a few more days, and power is expected on tonight.
What’s clear to many that survive the quake along with their friends and family is that despite all the busted homes and work places, it’s just stuff. I say that with all my heart. I lost 100+ bottles of wine – so what? I will buy some more. I lost dozens of glasses and plates – big deal, Briscoes has them on sale next week I am sure. My bike fell on the ground and needs a new indicator – so what?, it’s called order a new one. All that matters at a time like this is that me, my family, my friends, (and yes, my pets too), are safe. Everything else is just stuff. I am not going to pretend I know what it’s like to lose a close family member or friend from an earthquake – coz I didn’t lose any. But I do know I am lucky, and my family and friends were too.
I will share one last thing with you – where I was when the quake hit. I was at the gym.
Just got out of the shower, walking in my towel towards the locker area. I was thrown from side to side in the corridor (it hit REAL quick, so no build up warning), and then I remember thinking “oh fuck this is big” and then saw the ceiling beginning to split way from the wall above me. I ran for the locker and I remember thinking my sense of self preservation and my sense of modesty were fighting each other (remember I was naked other than a towel). By now the 1st wave of the quake had stopped, and the building was standing, so a quick decision was to put on trousers and then leave REAL QUICK. So I did that – threw all my stuff in my gym bag, and grabbed my shoes and socks and ran for the door.
But the escape from the gym by road was just as unnerving. As we (me and a friend from the gym, he was driving) drove away from the gym the road turned to a river real quick (a river of sewerage, we could smell it!). Cars dived headfirst into newly created pot holes that swallowed the front of the car. Anyone in the car scrambled to get out. I figured they were doing us a service, as anyone behind them now knew to drive around. We go over this quickly when the car in front dived forward and was trapped. We went 90 degrees, and drive though the local supermarkets garden (thanks Countdown!) and went for high ground. By now the river was almost a foot deep, and only a few cm below the doors of many cars. After 30 or so minutes we found an escape, and after grouping together 3 other cars, we went in convoy to try to get back towards town (in our case towards Opawa – only 1km up the road). That took us some 30 minutes as 75% of the roads were impassable due to similar issues – sewerage flowing across the road, and massive potholes (and the two put together means we couldn’t see the potholes!). Anyway, made it back to work to see the damage, which was severe, and then spent the next 4 hours TRYING to get home. Didn’t work, since all roads to my place closed. Picked up (well, almost rescued, since his place was demolished) another friend, and went to his mates place. The rest is history.
I do also want to say, it very clear the Richter scale doesn’t work. This 6.3 did WAY more damage and far more violent that the 7.1, and it wasn’t just coz it was closer. It was shallower, and hit areas that rebounded off low bedrock. Anyway – my new earthquake scale I invented a few months back worked much better. Most agreed it was a very clear FUCK ZONE around most of Christchurch that day! (read the post if that doesn’t make sense).
Black and White Version: I am fine, so are my family, friends and pets. Lots of stuff broken. But it’s only stuff.