Election coverage, and results…

Right, to the election. Wasn’t that fun? Maybe not, but something of a relief, that it was over, that no one got an enourmous landslide.

Any party, from whatever part of the spectrum, that got too much of a mandate would just be dangerous, how ever much of a lefty I am, I’m also a lot of a libertarian (no ‘z’ on the end there, I must note) and parties which think they’ve been put there by God (or a large majority) will feel fine about smothering the populace in their own special blend of ideology.

Too much of anything, whether you like it or not, is a bad thing. Even cheeseburgers.

Now, the coverage on the night, we watched TV3 most of the evening, but we bounced around a little bit, I thought the TV3 panel format was great, and the speakers were pretty interesting (maybe not Deborah Coddington, who I find to be equal measures of hot and disagreeable) I especially liked the poli.sci woman from Canterbury University, I don’t recall her name, and Michael Laws is always good value – but I don’t listen to him on Radio Live, so maybe everything he was saying he’s already said endlessly to the embitterment of everyone who doesn’t have the taste or intelligence to find their way all the way up the dial to National Radio.

What wasn’t so good about the coverage on TV3, was the graphics, no colour coding, sometimes full screen, but even then just charts rather than nice diagrams or overlays of parliament, or whatever – One had it all over them with the graphics.

But do you know who REALLY dropped the graphics ball? Triangle. Yes, their Elect! presentation, produced and directed and such by none other than my mate Dylan, had onscreen displays in the form of a felt tip pen hastily scrawled on torn out sheets of refill, and a stick up chart of the seats in the house with bits of coloured paper on them. But the worst thing about the presentation, and incredible as it might seem, was elsewhere, indeed the lighting was rubbish – the lighting on Ryan Sproull(presenter) was okay, but on the guests it was shocking, but you can live with that, the next thing on the list of oopsies was the sound, Dylan had to provide a bunch of his own gear (it sounds like Triangle really need to pick their game up a bit) including sound mixing desks and such like, and the sound was fuzzy and boomy, not nice. But that’s still not the worst thing, the worst thing, ignoring the quality of the quests, was the camera work. If it wasn’t out of focus (which it very often was) it was pointing in the wrong direction (cutting between cameras to find the hosts face half cut off, right at the bottom of the screen, for example), which is simply unacceptable for a television broadcast.

Lessons learned, I’d suggest:

  1. Get someone who has a fucking clue about framing a shot to operate the cameras, also eyes (to check for focus).
  2. Better microphones.
  3. Give your guests something to lean on / put their notes on. Ideally a table or desk with a covered front.
  4. Computer graphics, they’re not just a good idea, they’re the law. (I understand that this was the intention, but the software providing the graphics wasn’t behaving properly on the night.)
  5. Guests should include some more mainstream journalists, who are comfortable with speaking about current events / politics.
  6. The hosts suit should fit properly. Also, probably helps to be able to express yourself really quickly – good writer != good live interviewer. (I for example, would be a completely rubbish live interviewer.)
  7. If you’re thinking that a piece of paper with writing on it is a good idea, think again.

On the whole, I thought it was a great idea, but needed a couple more days of preperation, and maybe a couple of dollars spent on the set (alternatively, add another day to the preperation and get a SPONSOR.)

Back to the election though, and the result. Now, what do I think about it? Well, I already said I was relieved, let me just say it again – I’m really relieved that enough people ignored their greed and tried to vote for a better future for New Zealand.

I know I did.

Take it from me, one of many business owning, productive, mainstream voters – that also happens to be a lefty – Oh, if you think it’s amazing that there are lefties that aren’t gay / maori / bludgers: you’re a moron, and you should be banned from voting.

In other news:

  • Edward has a cold, which we’re pretty sure she got when she had her ovaries out – incidentally, stitches came out today, and she’s doing great.
  • Furikake still rocks my world (nearly every day for lunch.)
  • I’ve been reading some Peter Hamilton lately, and I’m liking the third book of the Reality Dysfunction trilogy muchly. (So far.)
  • I like that we drive past the Prime Minister’s house almost every time we go to get Wendy’s. The rocks. I love New Zealand.
  • When I mentioned Hit-and-Run Carpentry, I didn’t mean I’d been messing with political billboards.
  • I know, I was especially mean about my friends efforts on their little election night TV show, I didn’t really mean it. Now let me include another little diatribe here, I doubt anyone will read this copy here, and just skip to the list, so with that in mind, I kissed your mum, it was hot, she wanted to get into my pants, but I got cold feet and said we’d have to limit it to a dry hump:
    • They obviously needed more help, and I offered help a good week before things where put together and was ignored.
    • They’re clearly just bitter in the simple knowledge that I’m smarter & more creative than 75% of them.
      • Smarter than 94%.
      • More creative than 92%.
      • Better at maths than 14%.
    • I could have gotten a couple of legitimate journalists to go on the show – that is, not student journalists for Craccum.
    • I have roughly 100 * more business experience than 87.5% of them, and would probably have been able to get sponsorship for a better set (read:desks) given just a few days.
  • Bitter? Me? Fuck no.
  • Stop looking at me like that.
  • Fucking ants.
  • And here are a few words to mess up my rankings:
    • As you know, todays unseasonably bad weather included a strong wind – you could say it was a nasty blow job – and accompanied by an icey rain that seemed to squirt from the sky in bucket loads, splashing on the roof and dribbling over the gutters, spraying all over our faces and chests, penetrating right through our rubber coats and wet weather pants and gumboots, through our clothes soaking our damp underwear, we might as well have done it bareback or even completely naked, for all the use our raincoats proved, but we probably would have collapsed if we’d tried, so perhaps not. It was a longer and harder day than it should have been, and it’s my fault, I fucked up the pump installation last week and it was running really hot and steamy, so we had to tug the old one out and put an even bigger one in, in fact we were worried the new one wouldn’t fit into the tight hole, but we managed to shove it in there. Once we’d solved the pumping problem, we still had to straighten up the bent over supporting shafts for the gazebo we’re erecting around the hot tub, the gaping holes we bored into the firm, yet yielding, wet earth last weekend had filled up with a messy hot-chocolate looking sucking mud, so this week we rebored them, then filled each hole full of a load of hot, wet easicrete (and the post held upright in the middle of each hole by a supporting frame) – we thought of hiring one of those vibrator compactor things, but it turned out that it was a matter of only a few moments with a long rod to do it by hand and once the handjob was done you’d never know we hadn’t used the machine! We decided we’d done enough for the day, and after taking a hot golden shower to wash off all the sticky filth, we lay around in the tub until later in the evening when we used the money we’d saved on renting the hardcore machinery rental to order up a delivery of roast beef and potatoes – we were surprised when it was delivered by a bare breasted street prostitute wearing a ball gag, but didn’t complain – she really delivered, in fact it was so good we got her to deliver a nice hot lunch to us the next day!

New Zealand television on New Zealand television…

Following on in the strangely muted and hidden footsteps of that mockumentary political satire The Pretender on TV3, last night saw the introduction of Liberation Force to TV2, and with it an extremely low budget poke at US foreign policy / oil fever.

The premise is that vast oil reserves have been discovered off the West Coast of New Zealand, the U.S. does the only thing it realistically can and decides to implement regime change in New Zealand and bring us Democracy™ and Freedom™, and free us from the shackles of Terra™.

To do this, they send in the troops, an infantry division is dispatched from Hawaii, and spend the episode engaged in bringing a Christchurch suburb to Liberation™.

Liberation force is another mockumentary (which is why I mentioned The Pretender), we follow the lives of Corporal Eric Johnson and Private Beau Baker.

The acting is rough, these guys might be actors, but they don’t have a lot of polish – well done for unknown (to me at least) new guys though. The budget is obviously tiny, all the troops are wearing what looks like army surplus stuff – and doesn’t look anything like U.S. Army camoflage. Oh and they seem to be driving 70’s era Landrovers, not the ever present Humvee.

But, to me at least, the point isn’t the acting or the props or the jokes, the point is that it’s a brutal savaging of U.S. foreign policy. And I really like that.

I want to see some more of Private Beau Baker (aka the White Ninja) and his Wong Po Fist of Fury, it really scares the hell out of little girls skipping rope in their driveways.

I also want to see these guys get their asses handed to them by the locals, but that really wouldn’t fit – the locals just want them to "piss off," and tell them so in no uncertain terms ("get the fuck off my driveway!"), but otherwise just tolerate them with quiet sneers.

Standout performances: the little boy in the dairy and the girl skipping ripe, what a pair of little cuties; the bewildered looking maori guy at the checkpoint; and the older guy in the supermarket that called the Corporal a cock – "this is the express lane, cock."

I’ve got a feeling, from the TV2 website, that this was a one shot wonder. So if you didn’t see it, you won’t see it again. Sorry.


Oh, Atlantis season 2 episode 8 finally made its way down the lines, it’s ok. They do need to lift their writing , and if you’re going to have weird aliens, you should think about putting some money into your makeup budget.

But it’s still better than any of the SF that’s actually on New Zealand TV right now. Do you know why? Oh, yeah – SF would get in the way of Garden Patrol, Painting Disasters and NZSing Your Way to Servitude.

New Zealand Television, now with added fibre and political satire…

Did you catch The Pretender last night? No, not the old Usian thing with a weird guy that fakes being a doctor, or a whatever, and so forth, this The Pretender was on TV3, and it looked like it was made by TV3, and is about the wealthy moron National candidate for Wakatipu South called Dennis Plant, a Queenstown property developer, and arrogant, ignorant, fool.

It’s an obvious rip-off of The Office, but it’s still pretty cool with it. Also: weird.

Did anyone know this was coming? I hadn’t heard anything about it, never an advert or anything, it just came on late last evening as we were about to retire for the night.

The especially cool thing was all the cameos, I noticed Helen Clark, Rodney Hide, Trevor Mallard. I don’t know yet if it was revealing that there was no National leadership presence, but that might be coming later (or indeed may have happened as I took out the rubbish).

I liked it.

In other news, we went with F&K&littleM for a nice (haard) walk up a long hill in the Waitaks, starting up the North end of Piha, was a killer uphill, for me. But we had a nice biscuit break on, (I think), Fisherman’s Point. Very very nice, with White’s Beach on the right, Piha North on the left, and a bunch of useless (and apparently) rich bodyboarders trying to catch the loverly swells waaay down below us. (In fact, they were all dropped off by a charter boat, and then bobbed around missing so many waves that F ended up cupping his hands to his mouth a laying down the law with a shouted "You SUCK!")

George loved playing on the beach, but what’s new?

Moving ever backwards in this update, on Saturday we spent a lot of time in the garden, weeding, binding, mowing, etc. It looks much better now, we’d let it go into Winter mode, which is the least lovely mode for a garden.

And on Friday we went and hung out with little deaf Kevin and his folks, and played no Pictionary. (We thought it was best to take a break.)

Lost Season 1 Finale, now with 100% more spoilers.

We watched the last couple of hours of Lost a week or so ago… Finally worn down by Claire – we’ve had all the episodes for (seems like) months, but I wouldn’t let her watch them, something about good things and those who wait, and instant gratification being for children, or something lame and self-righteous.

I’m serious, if you haven’t seen the final episode(s) already, don’t read this. If you have you probably shouldn’t bother, just kick it down towards the end, I’m guessing my own conclusions in the last few paragraphs, the rest of this entry is pretty much just a blow-by-blow of what happens through the last couple of hours.


I think the last thing we saw at the end of the previously aired episode was the discovery the Black Rock, yes?

Well, the explosives hidden in the hold of the Black Rock are some seriously sweaty and dangerous old sticks of dynamite, coated with gelignite, and just waiting for a shaft of sunlight, or a slight bump to set them off, and they were really playing up to this one — anyone else expecting one of the things to go off? Well, I’m sure we all were, but right then?.. *boomf* Poor old Hurley, now he has pieces of Arzt is all over him.

Speaking of Hurley, it was interesting for them to expose a new Flashback fact – he doesnt actually have bad luck, the numbers — or whatever — were doing everything they could to keep him from making the plane, and safely away from the island. He was just being too tenacious to be put off. So perhaps he isn’t the jinx he thinks? He’s is a hundred & sixty times millionaire, after all. So maybe the numbers were just upset that he was driving such a stupid big car?

So while Kate, Jack (who still has some Arzt on him, r d r r) & Locke are carrying a couple of bags with carefully wrapped sticks of dynamite to the hatch

We’re back on the beach, where Danielle the Minbari is stealing Claire’s baby and bolting… Thank the bully that huge hero Charlie is around to save the day, oh, excuse, I was living in an alternate reality for a second – Charlie is still just a gigantic fucking moron. When is he going to stop acting like a child? So he goes berko and with — everyone’s favourite British-Indian-fake-Iraqi, — the hot and capable Sayid they go on a mad cross-island psycho-Croatian-fake-French-bitch-hunt.

Oh, oh, but we’ve got imperilled castaways elsewhere — the nutsos on the boat are really cruising off at a fair clip…

By the way, I’ve got to tell you, there’s no fucking way I’d have headed off on the boat, if they make it you’ll get rescued too, if they die you’re still "safe" on the island. Sure, I’d be happy to help build the boat, but… I’ll see you when you send help dudes, have fun with your rotten old fruit, salt-water and scorching sun. I’ll stay here on the beach eating fruit, pork & fish, and drinking cool fresh mountain water.

… Anyway, so they’re cruising off, Sayid set them up with a radar (which, BTW, wouldn’t work, it’s tied to the mast, so while the display clearly requires it to be rotating around, as you’d expect, it’s actually just pointing in whatever direction the boat is pointing, so they’d be able to see one point directly in front of them, I mean, if there was something to see). So there’s some drama with the keel falling off and Michael (aka: Mr. I’m a bad father with anger issues!) discovering that Sawyer is packing heat — and I’m not talking about his good looks — when he swims off and hauls back the keel.

Sayid & Charlie are still running through the jungle, Charlie is an unfit has-been rockstar junkie, so he falls behind a bit, but their path takes them past the fallen Beechcraft, and during a quick breather Sayid lets slip about all the – dun dun duhhhhh – heroin… Then they’re off again, and now our mate Charlie has a lovely new Virgin Mary statuette in his satchel, yay, Charlie, you’re not a pathetic weak-minded little criminal loser or anything, you’re a big hero! Good for you!

Our friends with the explosive backpacks are still trudging through the jungle, when something weird zoooots by and catches their eye… And it reall is a weird thing, we backed up the DVD to have another look… It’s like a crappy dart shape made of black smoke or shadows. I guess, if they try to explain it it’ll turn out to be exhaust smoke or something, but there’s just no way that’s possible if you look at it.

Shortly after that the ‘big monster’ comes back and starts smashing up trees, it looked to me like they were blowing upwards from underneath, so I’m continuing with my guess that it’s something underground, some crazy mining equipment or something stupid like that… Anyway, Locke gets grabbed and starts being dragged along the floor of the jungle towards a hole, with a sound exactly like a big ratchet pulling a huge clanking chain, I don’t know how anyone can possibly still think it’s a monster rather than people operating machinery.

Jack catches up and grabs Locke before he can be pulled down the hole, that crazy cripple asks tells him to let him go… He’s got almost a serene smile on his face, he says he knows the island won’t hurt him, it has other plans… Anyway, Jack ain’t havin’ none of that, so he gets Kate to chuck one of the greasy old sticks of dynamite down the hole, and they manage to get Locke free after theat slodes and they haul ass off to the hatch (very single minded, mmm?).

Chuckles Charlie & fake-British-Indian-Iraqi Sayid are approaching the pillar of smoke on the far side of the island from their ‘base’, and discover it’s nothing but a drum of (I guess) petrol or diesel or something burning away… There’s no one there. Then poor old fake-French Danielle appears with the baby, which is safe and well, and Charlie goes off at her, he really is a shit. The poor lady, in her stolen-child-fueled-grief had hoped to swap Aaron for her own son.

It’s night time on the boat and low and behold, but the radar has picked something up, but, oh no, it’s going away again, hey, how about we fire our only flare? Ok, let’s do it.

Locke & Jack wire the remaining dynamite to the hinges of the hatch and run a pretty long fuse off into the jungle… As soon as they light it Hurley spots his numbers engraved on the side of the exterior of the shaft and freaks out, starts shouting about the numbers and trying to kick the fuse to death, I was kind of expecting him to go the way of Arzt, but he gets tackled to the ground in time for the splosion

Long story short, the ‘contact’ comes back and turns out to be a crappy little boat (definitely not of ocean going size) crawling with dirty men… And they abduct Walt, shoot Sawyer, and blow up the boat, leaving Jin & Michael in the water, and Sawyer somewhere under the water. Uh-oh.

… The hatch has been blown open, so our pals walk over and have a look down into the shaft, it’s long, and most of the rungs of a built in ladder have fallen off… So with them standing around the hatch staring down the shaft, we fade to black.

And that’s it, the end. Yay, thanks for tying up all those loose ends, you cock-arsed bastards.

Now, I think the guys on the boats are the decendents of the pirates — I think of them as pirates, even though I guess they were actually slavers? — anyway, they’re the sons of the slaver crew, and they have to keep abducting kids to keep their little population up. Hence Danielle’s baby and their attempt to get Claire’s baby Aaron as well.

I expect all the guys on the boat are going to be okay, the boat is fucked but it still floats, Sawyer was only shot through the shoulder and Jin will probably save his ass and pull him onto the boat while Michael is going nuts worrying about his newly stolen son.

I guess as soon as the new season starts in the states I’m going to have to start downloading it, as I now really want to know what the hell is going on — and how they’ll be able to rationally tie everything together.

Number one lesson learned: Next time I’m not pissing around, I’m just gonna watch the DVDs, it’s so much more enjoyable without all the fucking adverts.

Stargate Atlantis Geekathon.

I had a bit of a Stargate jones, so I decided to have a bit of a binge and got Season 1 of Stargate Atlantis, I’d heard really good things about it, but of course it hasn’t been on TV here yet.

I might have accidentally watched it all through Sunday night & Monday. Yeah, all 20 hour-long episodes, from start to finish. Oops.

It’s really good, I don’t know if you have to like Stargate already, but I’m sure it helps a lot.

Of course there are problems with it (I’m not a fatuous fanboy, I swear.)

The Wraith could use better makeup, to start with. And it’d probably be good if Sheppard wasn’t such a carbon copy of O’neil, but jeeze he’s good at it.

Oh, but the Czech science guy Dr. Zalenka, he rawks. I like the way he & Dr. McKay (who is also completely awesome) rub up against each other.

Ahh, and Ford, not only is he hot enough to turn me, but listen to his awesome voice, if you close your eyes you can almost imagine that it’s Jason Mewes — Jay the only cool character from "Jay & Silent Bob : Kevin Smith is Really Really Over-Rated part 4 (now with more cock-sucking-jokes and Star Wars references, and my big-eared skinny wife in tight-tight-tight pants. By the way I like to stroke my cock, read all about it on my blog, which my publicisit told me was a good idea to get more suckers to watch my shitty movies.)," which is a really long, but surprisingly honest movie name — and that’s cool, thinking about Jay sneaking off to the Jumper hangar, smoking weed, smoking weed, and drinking beers beers beers.

I think the whiny nerd looking science guy (I don’t remember his name, the one with the pony-tail) is also real cool, in his own horrible way, especially with the way he keeps popping up to whine. That’s so realistic. Every office over a certain size gets at least one really whiny bitch. If only they had an airlock they could stuff him in. "Put this in your Geneva Convention report, biatch." *pssssshhhhhht*

Least fav character? At the moment Probably Weir the administrator/governor. But only because of their repeatedly use of her as the guy that always has to think very carefully about Sheppard/McKay’s latest plan before saying "Ok, go," every… single… time.

But what would I be like if I was 350,000,000 light years from home, and the coffee just ran out? And all the hot chicks seem to be dying of ancient (as opposed to Ancient) nano-viruses? I don’t know. But I’d definitely want one of the security guys to teach me how to shoot aliens in the face.

So much sploding and shootifying!
So much CG!
Such an annoying cliffhanger!