Thursday, May 21, 2009
Futher to the review, I feel I should admit somewhere that, while I'm pretty familiar with Shakespeare and I've read Don Quixote, any knowledge I have of Double Falsehood is based a very little web research starting with Wikipedia and some brief searches of the play text to check what wasn't in it.
Friday, May 15, 2009
Click to enlarge
Or: A Political Map Of Present-Day Auckland
Faster than an ELECTORAL FINANCE ACT! able to leap DUE PROCESS in a single bound with his THREADBARE cloak of JUSTIFICATION (the torn REMAINS of the ROYAL COMMISSION recommendations)! The tatters suggest room for change at the edges (and provides a FIG LEAF of "CONSULTATION") but if you have a problem with the basic fabric you'll just have to sit back and hope it FALLS APART AT THE SEAMS.
We can now reveal the SECRET IDENTITY of the man who can DESTROY WHOLE CITIES — even from the other end of the ISLAND! "There's only room for one RODNEY in this town!"
Some might wonder what fiendish bargain he made to get these POWERS. Before, he was about as much use as the TRAINEE SUPERHERO from that episode of THE TICK whose superpower was WITHERING SARCASM. Now all AUCKLAND LOCAL GOVERNMENT DECISIONS stand or fall on the WHIM of their OVERLORD!
His PINSTRIPE PAJAMAS indicate that GOVERNMENT has stirred quicky from its LONG SLUMBER to address the CRISIS in Auckland that NEEDS TO BE SOLVED RIGHT NOW. Or,that Auckland has only just WOKEN UP to WHAT IT'S IN FOR.
His SUPERHERO CHEST THINGY has been SEWN ON by his DAD — possibly even STITCHED UP. THE LETTER A stands for AUCKLAND. Also for ACRIMONIOUS and ARROGANT.
By your councils combined — he is SUPER CITY!
Got a problem with that? TOO SLOW!
* Super-[anything] is a trademark of Marvel Comics Inc. Used without permission — a choice made perhaps because "Great Auckland" would only remind people what happend to the Great Auks.
Monday, May 11, 2009
This one, for example, relates to the category of "Best site for mobile devices that are embedded through your fist".
Thursday, May 07, 2009
He answered "Yes".
Today Rodney was eventually, under something rather like duress from the Speaker, explained that the Auckland transition etc. has not been costed. I had gathered by that time, and Rodney subsequently clarified, that yesterday he was referring to the cost of making the proposal rather than of implimenting it.
People who deliberately break the language are not clever.
Tuesday, May 05, 2009
Some time ago, when I happened to be in Chicago (I was being drawn into a sordid web or corruption and intrigue at the time - long story), I chanced to stop in at a used book store on the East Side.
On a whim, I purchased a old, battered notebook. As it turned out, this contained handwritten notes towards an unpublished short story (or possibly a screenplay) which I've tentatively titled "The Maltese Tax Cuts".
The story, as I reconstruct it, concerns the adventures of a hard-boiled, cynical satirist attempting discover the truth behind rumours of valuable tax cuts and fiscal stimulii - money which various ruthless, shadowy figures attempt to hijack. Eventually our hero comes to believe that they never existed at all.
I have reproduced the most legible parts of the notes - fragments really - below, and done my best to arrange them into a sensible order.
Of course I wish I knew more. Is there some unpublished manuscript or uncompleted movie (perhaps, fittingly, abandonded halfway through production when it proved too expensive)? There was nothing to indicate authorship.
I would have enquired about the notebook's provenance, except that when I returned to the shop I found it had been demolished by unscrupulous property developers.
She sashayed out of my life like a lady who was leaving a seat in Parliament to take up a high-ranking UN post and wasn't afraid to show it. Just don't call her a dame. That's not a title she accepts.
It was like an explosion in a pinstripe factory. I hadn't seen so many snakes since the reptile house, and I wasn't even past the lobby. Hungry eyes, hungry like the eyes of a reporter who'd just heard Tony Veitch had been caught kicking David Bain and Taito Phillip Field to death while coming down with swine flu.
"Hey yeah, Phil Goff. Whatever happened to him?"
"Maybe I shouldn't have promised to cut your taxes like I did," she said, "Maybe I shouldn't have done a lot of things!"
She looked up at me, mad as hell. Dames. One minute they're spinning your wheels, next minute they're crushing your car.
"So the stimulus is real?"
He smiled at me. One of those puppy-dog smiles that reminds you puppy-dogs are descended from wolves.
"It certainly is," he said, "Why, it's quite enormous."
"But nobody's seen it."
"Just a little more time. Plans are in place. I'm sure it will turn up."
"But no tax cuts?"
"We couldn't possibly afford them."
"But if tax cuts are supposed to be so good for the economy..."
"Just imagine the deficit!"
"Isn't that why we were running surpluses before?"
"Deficit, I tell you!"
"You do know the economy isn't the same thing as the Government books, right?"
He leaned forward, ready to invite me into his parlour.
"Please," he said, "can't we be friends? I have so many friends. Perhaps I could offer you..."
"No dice, pal!"
"Would you like some kind of home insulation fund?"
"Fat chance, buster!"
"There might be an SOE chair free..."
"I thought you only gave those to people you'd called incompetent crooks."
"I could make an exception."
"Stick it up your jumper!"
"You do seem to be unusually stubborn. How unfortunate. My associates will see you out."
It was all starting to come together and it wasn't pretty. It was super. Not super like a superhero or super like a good night at a swinging club. Super like a super city - when you're force-fed a super-sized milkshake made of shouting, fighting and disenfranchisement, until finally you're so huge and bloated you can't see your own feet in the shower. Bad super.
They took me into the parking lot out back for some "consultation". I knew I had to play this careful. If they were planning to "put a cap on" me, I had the life expectancy of a pig with the sniffles.
Turned out the thin one was Minister of Holding Your Arms Behind Your Back and the short one was Government Spokeman for Punching. His first hit left me dizzier than a Tertiary Education Minister in a helicopter.
"Can we cut him?" asked the short guy.
I asked him how the building public support for the Auckland amalgamation was going.
He thought about that for a half a second, then answered me with a right hook. It connected hard. "Mandate that," he said. I dropped faster than a Reserve bank Governor who thinks he can do something about the recession.
And then everything went the colour of the next budget.
Lyndon has been thinking about film noir because he is appearing in WellingSIN City at the Fringe Bar on May 10, 17 and 24 as part of the NZ International Comedy Festival.
Friday, May 01, 2009
Their latest statment (on the Zespri carbon footprinting study) names as the source of its quotes "the Coalition statement".
Apparently Mr Statement hasn't considered the possibility that the actual fruit might be carbon neutral.