Monday, September 28, 2015
Yes, I am embarking on an Op Shop tour today, with my mate Doug. Look out Waikato! You may wave from your windows, front porches and the well-lined streets as we swoop past. If we stop for a bargain, then please don't get in our way. We are going to replenish our China cabinets with delights from the past; not just beautiful china to look at, but to use. Oh yes, we shall be looking for trios and any other colourful offerings that 'jump out at us.' Yes, there will be very well laid tables, ready for high teas. Bring back the glories of the past. We should never have 'let them go!' Rule Britannia---except for the RWC of course.
Wednesday, September 23, 2015
Yeah I know I slagged VW for their 'indiscretion about pollution levels, but hey---I am sure you won't be alone in that particular issue. hardly a month goes by whereby a major recall occurs, be it from an Asian, European or American auto maker. I guess India and China will joint the list before long. BUT, my friends and readers in Germany---don't let that stop you going to the Frankfurt Book Fair to check out ROSKILL---the story that is replicated in every country. All countries have issues re the use of damaging substances, legal or mainstream---they break families and destroy lives. So---do go along and check out ROSKILL. Post a picture of you holding ROSKILL---a story that offers hope when there appears to be none.
Tuesday, September 22, 2015
So you go and check out all the 'specifications' for a new car and arrive at that place that allows you to make a sensible decision about buying one that ticks all the 'boxes.' It has all the power you want, the looks, and above all---it has fantastically green qualities.' You go ahead with the deal, and trade in your old 'stinker,' in the knowledge that you are saving the planet. Then comes the news that a 'reputable manufacturer, indeed the worlds most successful one, in terms of total sales, gets caught telling a 'porky.' NO I m not talking about David Cameron's unusual past-times! I find it a bit much to believe that other manufacturers are not also complicit in distorting the details re their latest releases.Expect VW to cry out in indignation that they are not the only ones doing this. I would be extremely surprised if they were. OK, the complete fabrication of the truth was on a massive scale and others may be at the other end of the 'lies continuum,' but tales and exposes are going to be the stuff of our news media. There will be back-stabbing, accusations and shock and horror stories. Imagine what will come out about some of the 'new boys on the block.' The are are also going to be some damned good deals going as some of the companies try to 'knock off' so-called 'dirty cars.' Maybe the events we are witnessing will be good reason for the alternate energy cars to come massively into the new game! Bring it on!!!
Monday, September 21, 2015
Every day we are seeing more and more people, flowing into the EU, mainly Germany. The sad sight of exhausted mothers and young children has torn at the heart strings of many people. Thousands of young men have also poured across the borders of Eastern Europe, looking for 'safety and a better life. There are those who claim that Europe is inviting a 'time-bomb' to enter the nation states that make up this continent. There are others who point out that the rich Islamic nations of the Middle East, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States in particular, that have not opened their borders. That is not to say that they have not given huge amounts of money. Where this will end, if ever, is anyone's guess, but history has seen the mass movement of people before, be it from a colonial act, or the result of wars. There is another genre of refugee and there is a discussion re the action of New Zealand, refusing a 'Climate Change,' refugee to stay in the country. He has NZ born children and support is gathering for him to be allowed to stay in NZ.A petition has been launched and meetings held to put pressure on the relevant minister of the Crown to let him stay. Time is running out, for him and for the nation he comes from. The low lying nations in the Pacific are 'going under,' in a climactic manner. They are hardly above sea-level and any rise is making their nations perilous places to live. Water and crops are threatened and if the process accelerates, as many scientists claim, then we are going to see another mass movement of people from the affected areas. We have to face the probability that Island nations, around the world, those that have little high ground, are going to cease to exist. Other countries will have their shape change considerably as the low-lying land submits to the encroaching sea. NZ needs to look to its Pacific neighbours. It is these people who we need to accommodate, along with other nations in the region. I have much sympathy for the people in Syria, Northern Africa and other worn-torn countries in the area, but it is to the nations who share the huge ocean that NZ sits so comfortably in, that we need to help first. It is also a question of numbers. We cannot accommodate millions or even hundreds of thousands from the Northern Hemisphere, but we can make a real difference in our own region. Let the father from Kiribati STAY!
Thursday, September 17, 2015
This is a call to all Kiwis, ex-Kiwis or whatever name you choose------I need you. I need you to spread my blog, my website and links to my books. Heck---there are enough of you there, although I hear many of you are coming back to your roots, back here in NZ! If you have been reading my blogs, you will no doubt have connected with some, agreed with a few and downright wanted to 'sort me out' re some of them. I'd like to say, I never meant to offend, but in some cases that would be a big lie, beyond the legendary black stump, a step too far. NZ and Aussie share much, many attitudes but there are some great dividers, not all related to sports. So---keep reading, sharing my blogs, downloading the eBooks and better still pushing my books. Just go to my website. I need this in order to write some more. I am 'do it yourself' publisher of my works, so it I need all the people power on my side, particularly Kiwis in Aussie. Cheers! www.authorneilcoleman.com
‘Wake up! Now---not tomorrow. It’s light outside, ya lazy bugger!’ ‘Piss off, Perdy---just because you have slept for 10 ours---straight.’ ‘Well you’re the one insisting I go to doggie care. I don’t sleep much there---got to maintain my ‘position.’ ‘Yeah head bitch, eh girl. Ewwwww—that was full tongue---get away!’ That’s how things are here at home, people---every day during the week. I get to go to doggie care and he gets to bring home the bacon. I play---actually I am not gonna give away my secrets about what happens at doggie care. What happens at doggie care, stays in doggie care—thems the rules. Each day sort of starts the same, except on ‘pissing down days,’ when I would prefer to stay home and watch God’s bullets as they bounce off the office roof---from my safe place, behind the big glass windows. I don’t even like the cat-door being open---something may come in---not a cat of course! Speaking of cats---that furry bundle of fatness moved out long ago. Hell---all I did was chase her---a bit, and she ran---and kept going. Now she taunts me from her ‘safe place,’ beyond the fence. One day, you know who, will leave the gate ajar---then----well that’s another dream to come true. He gets his breakfast and if I am lucky, I am the recipient of a miserly piece of bacon---his reasoning? ---it’s not good for me. Shite---what about you dude! Oh, I am forgetting---he isn’t fat no more---as he keeps reminding me. We both look at ‘the cat’ outside---looking back at us---man---she is humongous! She’s the one who needs Bariatric Surgery! So, he’s showered, fed, ‘abluted’ and pigged-out’ on the news, so it’s game-time. I run outside, pretending I ain’t going nowhere. Why do I do that? It’s always the same. He gives me a treat to come inside and jump on the couch so he can pick me up and put me in the car, where I get another small offering from the ‘car-stash.’ Man---who’s trained who here? I chuck in an extra or wiggle or two, just to add a bit of realism. He sticks on the news, or in my view some opinionated twat who thinks he knows everything! This is the time, I try to give him the ‘guilts.’ I do this weird trembling thing. He thinks I don’t really want to go and tries to assuage that feeling by being nice to me. Damn I’m good at that. I quite like going to doggie care, but I don’t want him assuming that it is going to happen in his ‘holidays.’ He belongs to me then and it’s trip day, every day, preferably---all day! We head down the big hill, and travel alongside my favorite place---the ‘bay,’ where ti all happens. I have heaps of friends there, and it’s off the bloody leash-----freedom, to sniff, chase Pukekos (even on the motorway once!) I love to roll in the stink things, get down and dirty, swim, and above all---chase the ball---my orange ball. Sure, I share it with my mates. I’m not possessive like some of them. The ‘Bay’ is soon behind us and it off the motorway. I know that if we go past a certain point---we are going elsewhere, but usually I can tell---the lead up is all different. There is a place on the way to the doggie care that stinks really badly some days---well he thinks it is, because I notice him scrunching up his nose. I heard him say to a passenger once, that ‘all the shit from Auckland goes there!’ Sounds like a cool place to play! Next we are driving really slowly---it’s a village—with lots of white flags and signs saying—‘save our village,’ and a whole lot of other stuff. Buggered if I know what that is all about, but he seems to agree with them. Finally---the drive appears and we pull into the car park. He invites me to ‘go toilet,’ I do---not because he says so though. I’ll piss when I want and as for the other, I’m not damned ready! He has me on a lead—what’s he think I’m gonna do-----feck off or something? Nah---it’s inside where I can begin my ‘secret day.’ He threatens to put a ‘go-pro on me,’ whatever the hell that is, so he can spy on me. I think he’s jealous, because one of the ‘special people’ there, really likes me. At the end of the day (Where have I heard that before?) I always make sure to go back and give that ‘care-giver’ an extra kiss—just to remind Daddy, that there are other people out there, who love Jack Russells! OH OK, I do let up on him. Once he has given me a treat for being a good girl, I curl up on the back window parcel shelf and watch the world go by-----and go to sleep---until dinner time. It’s the weekend tomorrow. Adventure time—even better than doggie care.
Wednesday, September 9, 2015
People have always gossiped, whether they be young children, right through to those who should know better in a retirement home! It may be over the proverbial back fence, or in a cafe over a cup of coffee. One could say that it is part of being human. Today there is a headline in the NZ Herald about a young person who self-harmed, because of the new way of bullying---via social media. I have been employed for a few decades in a position whereby bullying in many forms is part of my daily life--for my clients.It used to take the form of 'dropped comments, or in your face verbal attacks right through to physical abuse. It would not be difficult to find literature, films or TV programmes that feature various forms of bullying, but something has changed. The pace and nature of bullying has picked up since the advent of easily accessible social media. For our teenagers, this happens mainly through Facebook and some of the other platforms that are being added form time to time. A day does not go past without yet another sad, depressed, angry or 'damaged' young person coming to my office, whether self-referred or accompanied by a concerned friend or adult, to try to make sense of what they have 'received' through their devices.Sometimes they have already attempted a form of self-harm and at others contemplated it. With these young people, someone, if not themselves has taken action and sought help. It is those who do not look for support, who I see as most endangered.Social media is a platform that is too easily accessible, too flippant in its use to express a feeling that in the past, could have been processed and with a little resilience, cast aside. When 'gossip or negative talk,' be it of a bullying nature or downright threatening is delivered via the push of a button, then the possibilities to harm are much more impacting. Parents, teachers and others, may notice their teen (or younger person) going 'into themselves, not eating and being generally 'out of character.' Once again, it is these observations that may prevent a more serious response.For those who do not 'talk to their parents or another significant person in their lives, that we worry about Some parents take the 'phone from their teen, hoping that such actions will save the day, but in many cases (you will not want to hear this!) it is not beyond the means of young people to have 'alternate access' to social media, be it with a secondary phone or that of a friend--plus using 'public computers,' sometimes at a school or library. What can parents do? Good communication and knowing what your 'teen' is doing, having a 'trust' that WILL be tested form time to time, knowing (in as much as you can) who the friends your offspring is associating with, having rules that are negotiated, rather than 'inflicted;' these are the basis for being prepared for the scenarios that will come the way of your teen, when they live their lives on the Net! Banning them may seem like a solution, but that is a bit like saying to your loved ones, that they cannot have a boyfriend or girlfriend while they are still at school. Think back to how YOU handled that one as a teen! IF YOU CAN NOT talk to your teen, then encourage them to talk to another 'trusted adult!' This issue re social media and cyber bullying is not going to go away. try to find out as much as you can, seek help. Ring Youthline or Netsafe and seek out other agencies who may be able to inform you of the pitfalls re SM. DOING NOTHING---is not an option.
Sunday, September 6, 2015
I am so pleased to finally see Tonga reading my blogs. The Pacifica countries are closely associated with New Zealand and much of my life has been 'enjoyed,' interacting and working with the young people and their families from the Auckland Pacifica community, many of course from a Tongan background. I have many fond memories of two wonderful young women (identical twins) who lived at my home while they finished their secondary education. I know that they have gone on to successful careers in the banking industry in Sydney. I hope that they get my message or that someone who knows them in Sydney, passes on my best wishes.Tonga----go well and may you continue to read my blogs!
Saturday, September 5, 2015
OMG you say. Has it taken that long? What on earth have you been doing all your life? Are you such a 'later bloomer' that you held on so long---to your innocence; that your journey lacked such titillation and pleasure? Now you are about to caress the smooth, clearly defined object of your desire. Yes, In know you have wondered how I filled my days, in times gone by; how I could observe others take so much guilt-free pleasure, day after day, some losing their 'friends' way too early, others straying from the fold, only to do it all again. I have been patient and now----on this cloudy day that only shows slivers of promise of things to come, I shall put aside my fears and jump into the conjugal bed and USE my new Gold Card. We will activate it TODAY!!!!!!
Thursday, September 3, 2015
The above words were very chilling to hear five years ago. The doctor was totally correct---or he would have been if I had not finally taken the decision to change my life. No, I did not have some sort of 'spiritual epiphany! I made the decision to stop the yo-yo dieting and subsequent piling on of weight after each failed diet. All I was doing was shoving heaps of money into various 'in vogue diets,' making the authors of such 'life changing opportunities,' richer--at my expense. I was told about Bariatric surgery as the only way left for me to get a check on my ever expanding waistline and the rush to an early grave. Being over 50, the operation would cost me the price of a new car---what the hell--all I would gain would be---life. I blocked my ears to those who thought I was 'lazy, or lacked self-control.' Hey this is my life---not yours, I thought. I was sick of sleep apnoea, high cholesterol, blood pressure and type two diabetes---all of which were contributing to my early demise. Now 28 months later and about 40 kilos lighter, I have my life back and I can make plans again. I feel better and enjoy my life, without having to feel guilty and the new energy has opened up opportunities that I simply could not contemplate years ago. Today I turned 65--I collect my pension and I can still work. That allows me to make plans for putting in place some financial security re my future. I can also think about s few other dreams--the campervan, if I so choose, or some travel. Choices---something we all have, but when they are backed up with that special gift--improved health---that makes all the difference. Today has been a joy---at work, at home, knowing I have friends who care and family right alongside me. I will take some time, later--to reflect on this special day.
Wednesday, September 2, 2015
It would not be hard to use the description, 'failed nation,' to describe many nations at the moment, Syria being an obvious example.One can use various 'lenses' to explain why this has happened to this ancient nation. You as a reader will not need to look far on a range of 'platforms' to find explanations, albeit ones that are penned, according to the 'writers' opinions. I am thinking of the consequences--for Syria's future, if not the immediate present. Many hundreds of thousands of Syrians are on the move, fleeing from an intolerable situation in their country of birth. They have suffered from a despotic leader, civil war between a myriad of groups, all claiming to represent the aspirations of Syrian people. Outside influences, not the least being the 'interests' of the usual suspects (USA, Russia and Iran) played out on the mess that the Middle East has been for hundreds of years, whether it be from colonial empire building or economic imperialism, all have played their part. Now throw in the specter of ISIS, with its particular take on the region and you have a cauldron of suffering, discontent and unrealized aspirations for the people who live in the region. Families and individuals flee, to wherever they can, seeking peace and some sort of economic future. That they head for Europe should not come as a surprise. Many would say, that it is just a reverse of what has happened in the past! Take a closer look at the 'refugees, in particular from Syria, take a measure of who it is that is leaving and I am pretty sure that large numbers of middle class, educated, skilled Syrians are fleeing their country. They take with them any hope for a rebuild of Syria, by Syrians (with massive help) and leave an even more 'depleted' country. Would they return? Have other mass movements of people form war-torn countries returned to their homelands? Is it too late to save Syria? It is if the EU, USA, and other 'players' in the regions and beyond, do not speak from the same page.What is happening in Syria will be replicated in neighboring countries, spawning other groups like ISIS. The world is at a tipping point, not just re these issues, but other climactic/environmental crossroads and what we are seeing in Syria could well be the most threatening point in history. Sorry for feeling pessimistic, but feel free to point out where I am wrong! I would love to have my mind changed. In the meantime, lets help these people. It is not their fault!!!