Category Archives: Auckland

Compliance Hell: Saturday Sport

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Have you been at Saturday sports? Of course, it’s all about the kids. The children are our future. Let them play Saturday sport, and they will become rounded citizens. But what of the parents? What about them? They’ve been at work all week — working for The Man.  What they really want is a Saturday morning lie-in, optional-extra ‘knee trembler’,… Read more »

Rites of Passage Part II: University Bars

The natural follow-up to the post about school balls is the leap into tertiary study, still a teenager, so young and clueless. Not everyone takes the prescribed New Zealand ‘drink yourself into the bowels of hell’ route, but let’s be honest, a great number of us do, even just once or twice. Some of us never learned where the ‘off’… Read more »

Great Tourist Destinations of the Western World: Drury

    Like you, I’ve been on a road trip these summer holidays and experienced the wonders of road travel, overtaking, vomiting, and appalling food breaks. Each year, I vow to pack a chilly bin full of cut fruits, healthy sandwiches, and heroin to make the travel a little easier. I’m thinking of packing a portaloo and perhaps even a… Read more »

New Year

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  In New Zealand, New Year’s Eve begins at midday on the 30th.  That was today. This is signaled by whoever has fronted with the keg. Once the keg had been tapped, it’s a bit like the opening ceremony of the Olympics, where they light the cauldron.  Faces of anticipation turn to fully-blown alcoholic wonderment as beer froths from the… Read more »

Whale Oil of a Different Kind

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  Let me try to explain this modern art lark. You’ve got the day off work.  It’s sunny.  All you want to do is something different.  You’re tired of politics and rugby.  You’re sick of Soho and delivered pizza. You’re tired of thinking Ponsonby might have something to offer you as an individual.  You decide to try the Gallery because… Read more »

Rough sleeping in Auckland

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During the week I visited the Walters Prize 2014 exhibition at the Auckland City Art Gallery. Before I hit the exhibition halls, I had a coffee upstairs and sat outside, just casually observing the environment, doing some people watching and noticing the ‘rules’ of gallery life. On my table was a sign: It’s true to say that birds will fly… Read more »

The Auckland Art Gallery – Walters Prize 2014

  Today I visited the Auckland City Art Gallery (ACAG), mainly to view the Walters Prize finalists. If you didn’t know, The Walters Prize is probably the most visible and contentious art prize in the land.  Now they’re calling it the ‘toughest’ art prize. It’s based on the Turner, held each year at the Tate Britain in London. You must… Read more »

The $100,000 shower curtain

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  Whaleoil’s analysis of the proposed expensive dividing curtain at the Devonport library is never going to be kind.  Read about it here. However, as usual, attempts at beautifying Auckland are getting trashed by the angry ratepayers and Len Brown detractors. What is public art for?  It’s for the public to look at and to form an opinion about something… Read more »