Tag Archives: New Zealand

A Huffington Post Article I Actually Enjoyed! The Guy Who Wants to Rid NZ of Cats!

It’s about some guy in New Zealand who wants to rid the island of cats!   Brilliant!  Can he move here?  (Don’t beat me Steph).

Gareth Morgan has a simple dream: a New Zealand free of pet cats that threaten native birds. But the environmental advocate has triggered a claws-out backlash with his anti-feline campaign.

‘I have a dream…’ – the cat version.  Fantastic!

Morgan called on his countrymen Tuesday to make their current cat their last in order to save the nation’s unique bird species. He set up a website, called Cats To Go, depicting a tiny kitten with red devil’s horns. The opening line: “That little ball of fluff you own is a natural born killer.”


He doesn’t recommended people euthanize their current cats — “Not necessarily but that is an option” are the site’s exact words — but rather neuter them and not replace them when they die. Morgan, an economist and well-known businessman, also suggests people keep cats indoors and that local governments make registration mandatory.

‘…but that is an option…’ Bahahahahaha!   BRILLIANT!

Morgan’s campaign is not sitting well in a country that boasts one of the highest cat ownership rates in the world.

What?  But why ever not????

best. story. ever.

Oh Please, Like There’s a Difference Between Australia and New Zealand!

New Zealand and Australia (which side doesn’t really matter now does it)

It seems I’ve managed to offend someone with my unwillingness to recognize the supposed difference between Australia and New Zealand.  Those of us on the top of the world, who don’t inhabit the anus of the planet, know that there’s not one bit of difference between the left cheek and the right…

So, there.  That’s right, there.  I said it.  And in the words of Don Giovanni when required to repent by the Commendatore, my answer, like his, is NO!

One Year Ago: The Christchurch Quake

It’s hard to believe that it has already been a year!

February 2011 Christchurch earthquake.

As families of the 185 people killed in the Christchurch earthquake marked the one-year anniversary of the disaster Wednesday, signs of a city still broken were all around them.  Hundreds of wrecked buildings downtown are still waiting to be torn down so reconstruction can begin in earnest — many of them within sight of the morning ceremony at Latimer Square.  The slow pace of recovery is drawing criticism from residents and developers as it wears at the reputation of Mayor Bob Parker, who was praised in the days following the quake for his leadership and for calmly articulating the pain and frustration many were feeling.

Let’s all still remember the folk down there.  They’ve got a good bit to go before life is ‘back to normal’.

Where in the World is Chris Tilling Now?

He’s busy at the Rugby world cup, with Mark Stevens.  But, alas, they went to the wrong country!

Two South African British rugby fans scoured the Wellington suburb of Eastbourne for their hotel, only to find it was half a world away in the British seaside town of the same name, a report said Tuesday.

Michael and Sunette Adendorff Chris Tilling and Mark Stevens travelled to the New Zealand capital to watch the Springboks play Wales in the Rugby World Cup believing they has secured accommodation at the Majestic Hotel, the Dominion Post reported.

But instead of enjoying the “splendid” beach views advertised on Majestic’s website, they found themselves wandering Wellington’s streets unable to locate the hotel on their GPS navigator, the newspaper said.

The penny finally dropped when the pair asked for directions at a local shop and pharmacist Linda Burke explained the hotel was actually some 19,000 kilometres (11,800 miles) away on the British south coast.

BAhahahahahah!   That’s going to be hard to live down…

Snow: In New Zealand!

Apparently it’s unusual for the kiwis to have this much snow.

Wanganui residents woke to a whiteout this morning as the region was blanketed by snow.

The fall came as a bitterly cold southerly blast brought snow to much of New Zealand, closing roads, some airports and cutting power to thousands.

Snow has made roads impassable in many parts of both islands.

Snow has also fallen in many parts of the North Island including in and around Wellington. Many hill roads around the capital were closed this morning, including the Rimutaka Hill Road. The Desert Road and the alternate route through National Park in the central North Island were also closed.

That explains why Mark Stevens has been so quiet.  He’s been out playing in the snow, making a snow man-kangaroo.

[I know, I know, mark lives in Australia, but it’s the same thing isn’t it].

Why Would Anyone Name their Child Lucifer Anyway?

Although New Zealand’s Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages has clamped down on naming a child ‘Lucifer’ (requested three times), they’ve been more liberal in the past with names including: “Benson and Hedges” (for twins) – “Violence” – “Number 16 Bus Shelter”.

I think there are some Kiwis with serious mental issues and they’re foisting off onto their children, poor kids, their own instability.

Jesus: The Cold Case – Deserving of a Dilly?

Another tv ‘special’ by some guy who lacks any real knowledge of the subject, as Deane shows plainly, is set to air in NZ on Sunday. I especially appreciate Deane’s observation-

… the list of biblical scholars demonstrates Bruce’s lack of knowledge of the field, his reliance on other people’s scholarship, and lack of first-hand knowledge of scholarship. Where are the current and most recent experts on the issue: Maurice Casey? Dale Allison? Roger Aus? They are nowhere to be seen, although they are obvious choices for anybody reasonably informed on current scholarship.

I’m kind of glad I’m not in NZ so I don’t have to watch.

Jesus: The Cold Case - New Doco on Who Killed Jesus This Sunday, 24 July 2011, at 8:30pm, Bryan Bruce will try to find out who killed Jesus, in a television documentary to be screened on New Zealand’s TV1. The documentary is one in an ongoing series in which Bruce examines old unsolved murders, and attempts to solve them … but with the twist that, here, the cadaver is 2000 years old … Read More

via Remnant of Giants

Christchurch Hit by Quake, Again

CNN reports

A pair of earthquakes with magnitudes of at least 5.0 struck within 90 minutes of each other near Christchurch, New Zealand, on Monday, the U.S. Geological Survey reported, reviving vivid memories of a deadly quake that killed more than 180 people in February. “Everyone is on edge here anyway,” said Rhys Taylor, who said he could hear sirens and see helicopters flying over Christchurch. “Obviously, power’s out — sort of all over the city at the moment — and phone lines are down.”

I hope they recover soon. I’m sure it’s more than a little difficult to live on the edge of disaster all the time.

More Kiwi Total Depravity… And She’s Old!

File this under “how stupid can you be?” of the day: Two women are facing drug possession charges after one was caught with marijuana in her bra. OK that’s bad but the reason the marijuana was found was that it was wrapped in foil, which set off the metal detectors at the New Zealand airport where they were attempting to board their flight.   The women, from Christchurch, New Zealand were apprehended at the country’s Queenstown Airport after repeatedly setting off metal detectors.  One woman, age 52, had 50 grams of marijuana dispersed throughout 28 individually foil-wrapped packets hidden in her bra, the “Southland Times” reports.

She’s been spending too much time with the Hobbins (shoot, typo) Hobbits.

We Can’t Forget New Zealand

The death toll has risen today to 146 with 200 people still missing.

New Zealand’s premier said the Christchurch quake may be the country’s worst disaster ever, as officials raised the toll to 146 dead and more than 200 missing while giving a grim prognosis for the city’s downtown.  Residents said prayers for the dead and missing at church services Sunday in Christchurch and across New Zealand. But church leaders canceled a planned multi-denominational service in a Christchurch park because of concerns it could block access roads for emergency services.

There’s lots going on in the world, but New Zealand still deserves our thoughts, and for those who do, prayers.

The Death Toll in Christchurch Continues to Rise


The death toll continued to rise Friday with numerous foreigners now thought to be among the dead, three days after a massive earthquake rocked New Zealand’s second largest city. …   Rescuers haven’t found anyone alive in the past 48 hours.  Police said many of the missing were expected to be among the 113 bodies that have been recovered. Less than a dozen people have so far been identified by authorities, though it is expected many of the unidentified bodies will be those of foreign nationals.

A national tragedy with worldwide implications.

Today in Christchurch

75 have been confirmed dead and 300 are still missing, according to Maddie Flannagan (on FB).  The disaster has prompted the Prime Minister to declare a national emergency.

At least 75 people have been confirmed dead in the earthquake, with the toll expected to rise significantly as more bodies are found and identified. The earthquake has devastated the centre of Christchurch, destroying buildings and infrastructure in the city.  Prime Minister John Key said a national emergency would allow the greatest possible coordination of local, national, and international resources to work on rescue and recovery efforts.

Do continue to pray, and don’t forget so soon just because it’s not the lead story on the evening news after a few days.  It’s going to be a long road to recovery.

65 Confirmed Dead, With Many More Fatalities Expected

In New Zealand, it’s gone from very bad to worse this morning with news that many have died and many more are suspected dead or trapped under the rubble.

A powerful earthquake struck one of New Zealand’s biggest cities Tuesday at the height of a busy workday, toppling tall buildings and churches, crushing buses and killing at least 65 people in one of the country’s worst natural disasters.

It was the second major quake to hit Christchurch, a city of 350,000, in five months, though Tuesday’s 6.3-magnitude temblor caused far more destruction than a stronger September quake that struck before dawn on a weekend. More than 100 people, including as many as a dozen visiting Japanese students, were thought to be trapped in the rubble as darkness — and drizzling rain — fell Tuesday night.

“It is just a scene of utter devastation,” Prime Minister John Key said after rushing to the city within hours of the quake. He said the death toll was 65, and may rise. “We may well be witnessing New Zealand’s darkest day.”

So very, very sad.  It is a dark day.  Here’s a couple of photos that show just a fragment of the devastation:  the Cathedral before and after the quake (courtesy of Stuart):

A Quake Has Hit Christchurch, New Zealand

Satellite image showing Christchurch and surro...

A 6.3-magnitude earthquake has struck Christchurch, New Zealand, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.  The quake struck just before 1 p.m. Tuesday (7 p.m. Monday ET).  The New Zealand Herald reported that phone lines in the area were out, roads were cracked and water mains had burst.

I hope this one doesn’t turn out to be as devastating as the last.  No further information is yet available.

UPDATE:   The New Zealand Herald reported that the quake’s epicenter was Lyttleton with a depth of 5 kilometers, though it was felt as far away as Wellington and Dunedin per Twitter reports. It shook the Canterbury region, which has a population of approximately 500,000.  Radio New Zealand noted some of the damage from the quake in Christchurch: a church collapsed, a bridge is impassible, the airport has been shut down and the mayor is urging people not to drive due to road damage.  HuffPost reader Laura Campbell submitted these photos of the damage in Christchurch.

UPDATE II:  According to Madeleine Flannagan this quake is much worse than the one which struck in September and there have been fatalities.  Pray for the Kiwis.

UPDATE III: You can keep abreast of the developments here at the Singapore Times or via twitter at #newzealand.  It’s turning out to be a horrific disaster.

UPDATE IV: first photos are coming in.

UPDATE V:  The waste water has broken and is running into the central city. The main highway out of the city has a huge hole in it with a truck stuck in it. Everyone is being ordered out of the city…  They are evacuating the hospital! What are they going to do with no hospital?  John Key is on air (Prime Minister of NZ) – he is saying all the right things, giving detail, promising govt money, assistance, showing leadership – Key says “he cannot rule out that there have been fatalaties” I suspect that is code for ‘we have not yet informed the next of kin.’ He is going to try to fly to Christchurch – good luck as the airport is closed… The opposition are standing with Key.  These lines from Madeleine Flannagan on FB.

UPDATE VI: Video footage has come in- at the HuffPo.

UPDATE VII:  You can now watch live streaming coverage here.

Lawnmower Races Can Induce Violence…?

Electric rotary lawn mower, with rear grass ca...

Not my mower- bags are for lazy people

Apparently so.  In New Zealand…

A lawnmower race in New Zealand erupted into a fight after one competitor rammed their ride-on mower into the side of another, The Southland Times reported Monday.   The incident happened in front of hundreds of spectators Saturday at a country fair, near Queenstown on the South Island, with stunned witnesses initially thinking the brawl was all part of the production.  “At first everyone thought it was a stunt or something that was being staged,” one spectator said.  “The race was over and a guy on quite a large machine shunted a guy on a smaller machine sideways.  “The guy on the smaller machine climbed up on to the bigger machine while it was still being shunted and started throwing punches.  “It was lucky the guys involved were wearing helmets.”

Good grief.  Why can’t we all just get along and mow our yards and race our mowers unmolested?

Uh Oh, Kiwis…

This is strange


New Zealanders’ expanding waistlines are creating a weighty problem for funeral directors, who cannot fit cadavers in their crematories and have resorted to selling double burial plots, reports said Friday. Funeral Directors Association of New Zealand president Tony Garing said the size of the standard coffin had increased as obesity rates soared. “Caskets are getting wider to accommodate people, so it is the width that is the issue,” he told new agency NZPA, adding the standard coffin was now 58 centimetres (23 inches) at the shoulder, up from 48 centimetres.

It’s a sad state of affairs when being supersized is such a problem that it’s a problem even after you’re dead.

Things to Be Thankful For: Eleven- Resiliant Teens

Tairua, Coromandel Peninsula, New Zealand

Image by Sandy Austin via Flickr

Three teens who have been missing in the South Pacific for 50 days — and were already eulogized in a memorial service — have been found alive by a New Zealand fishing boat. The boys — two 15-year-olds and a 14-year-old — disappeared while attempting to row between two islands in the New Zealand territory of Tokelau in early October and were given up for dead after an extensive search involving New Zealand’s air force. Their craft had drifted 800 miles (1,300 kilometers) to a desolate part of the Pacific northeast of Fiji, when the crew of a tuna boat saw them frantically waving for help on Wednesday afternoon. “All they could say was `thank you very much for stopping,'” Tai Fredricsen, first mate of the San Nikuna, said.

Thank God. Who says there are no miracles? Fools, that’s who.

Fading Hope…

In New Zealand

Officers, who had previously insisted that they were committed to mounting a rescue operation to bring the men [… miners trapped after a mine explosion] out alive, changed tack and began preparing the families of the men for the worst.  Hours after releasing an official list of the names of the men in the mine at the time of the blast, Superintendent Gary Knowles said that some of the miners may not have survived.  “We are keeping an open mind, we are optimistic, but we are planning for all options, including loss of life,” he said.

So sad.

The New Zealand Mine Disaster Update

New Zealand South Island

Rescue officials on Monday were preparing to send a high-tech robot into a mine tunnel to transmit pictures and assess toxic gas levels three days after an explosion left 29 miners missing underground. Police superintendent Gary Knowles, the rescue controller, said the New Zealand defense department had upgraded the robot so it would not create a spark and accidentally ignite a fresh explosion in the mine, near Atarau on South Island. But they were still waiting for gas conditions to stabilize further before sending the robot in, Knowles said.

Continue to pray for those folks.