Leadership Coup in New Zealand or Uneasy Lies the Head by Trevor Plumbly

Attempted Leadership Coup About three weeks ago, we had an attempted leadership coup! To be honest, it wasn’t of middle-eastern proportions; down here they tend to whack each other with public perception rather than actual weapons, but then if you want political excitement don’t come to New Zealand. Perhaps I should point out that this punch-up was in the opposition party (Labour), so it wasn’t a leadership issue in the true sense of the word, more of a spat over who was going to captain the second eleven. Coups in the Past… Read More

The Perils Of Dining Out When You Can’t See by Trevor Plumbly

Making a meal of it – the difficulties of dining out when you’re blind What used to be an event or celebration has become the subject of debate within my family. ‘Let’s eat out!’ was a popular proposition; so it was into the car and cruise the local eateries until a decision was reached on which particular food most of us would be happy with. From memory, there was never a unanimous vote, so it was quite common for one of us to sit at a table yearning for Chinese whilst the… Read More

Fare Well on Welfare by Trevor Plumbly

Welfare State Systems – The Original Concept We don’t send young kids up chimneys anymore; the poorhouses are all gone along with the lunatic asylums and, to a large extent, hunger and extreme poverty have been eliminated. For all that progress, we owe an awful lot to the architects of the welfare state system, first put into practice in the UK and Germany, then copied in many other countries. Like Christianity and Communism, state welfare in its pure form made perfect sense, in both political and humanitarian terms. Improve the lot of… Read More

A Special Offer by Trevor Plumbly

There they are! Real bargains and special offers, clogging up my mailbox to the extent I am forced to reflect on how many trees they kill to send me this crap. Not much point sticking a ‘No Junk Mail’ thingy on the box, they’ll just jam the stuff in your newspaper and get you that way. But nosey old bugger that I am, I can’t help but read it, and cogitate on how my life would improve if I availed myself of all this generosity. Or on how those that peddle and… Read More

Dinner for Four by Trevor Plumbly

10 minutes to go; so I double-checked the booze and the seating arrangements: Micawber should sit opposite Miss Moneypenny and next to Mary Poppins, while Jeeves would fill the fourth chair. Micawber was the first to arrive clad in a polo shirt and dress jeans; it was tough to see him as the Victorian law clerk. ‘Many thanks for your gracious invitation kind sir!’ he boomed. I decided to wait until the party had all arrived before explaining the nature of the dinner. Next in was Miss Moneypenny; she had scrubbed up… Read More