Ecclesiastes and all that by Trevor Plumbly

Sense and stupidity The mice have departed only to be replaced by more virulent pests: the politicians are back from yet another recess and, as ever, they’re anxious to invade and parade their virtues. I know I go on a bit about them, but their ability to speak at length and say so little never ceases to amaze me. ‘Sure there are problems in some areas, but they were caused by the previous administration’, is a familiar cry. It could be argued that we voted them in to fix those problems, but… Read More

Whatever Happened to Outrage by Trevor Plumbly

Swings and Roundabouts New Zealand is a green and peasant land on the face of it, relatively crime free by most other standards and, if the tourist publicity image is to be believed, populated by easy-going folk with a love of the great outdoors, rugby and livestock. But, like everywhere else, we’ve got our dark spots and, just like everywhere else, we’re not quite sure what to do about them. We basically operate under the British system, which god knows has tried for centuries to get to grips with crime. Hanging, hard labour,… Read More

The Confessions of a Grumpy Old Git by Trevor Plumbly

Equal Opportunity? I was sitting at a café the other day, next to an obviously proud and knowledgeable grandmother and her offspring. As grannies go she was of the gushing variety, lots of high voice baby-speak along with helpful hints and useless clichés to the obviously frazzled mother. ‘They don’t come with manuals dear,’ she offers as one little horror decides that the only way to attract attention is to throw a screaming fit, and then somewhat nostalgically, ‘Ah, the terrible twos!’ as another destroys some crockery. Everybody, it seems, falls over… Read More

My kingdom for a moral compass or Will I ever stop being naughty? By Emily Smart

Crime and punishment My six year old son Rudy came home last night with a letter he had written at school that I had to sign. I didn’t know what he was talking about until he broke (it didn’t take much persuasion), confessing that he had been naughty in class and his teacher had made him write a letter as his punishment. I read the letter, the gist of which was that he had put pen on his friend Roman’s ‘teeshert’ and that he was sorry. The letter ended with, ‘Roman can… Read More