Spare a thought for the hard-working Grumbles, if you plan to celebrate this women’s day nonsense

March 7, 2015


Not for the first time, the Council of Trade Unions has over-gilded its lily.

It has put out a press statement to say: 

On Sunday woman all over the globe will be marking international women’s day. The International Trade Union movement’s theme for the day is ‘Count us in’.

And then:

“On International Women’s Day we celebrate all women workers – those in paid and unpaid work. We honour working women heroes who have stood out as champions for women’s rights at work. We celebrate Kristine Barlett and the many thousands of caregivers who are at the forefront of the historic struggle for equal pay In New Zealand,” CTU Women’s Committee Co-convenor, Sheryl Cadman, said.

With regard to the first sentence, which woman all over the globe are they talking about?

Or – surely not – did they mean “women”?

If that be so, let’s be clear: many women all over the globe may well mark the occasion. But not all.

Mrs Grumble is among those who won’t be bothering.

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The Brits haven’t banned it but the Malaysians have – so what should we do about the Grey film?

February 8, 2015

Alf has always had a high regard for the decent family values championed by Bob McCroskrie and his Family First outfit.

But he’s bothered to learn that on the matter of movies and censorship, Bob’s more inclined to embrace the hard-line attitude of a Moslem country than the more liberal position of our Mother Country, the United Kingdom.

Bob is urging folk not to go to a movie with the unappetising title “Fifty Shades of Grey”.

He must be colour blind, because he makes it sound like this is a very naughty blue movie and accordingly is best avoided by decent family people.

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Radio NZ hacks go looking for Maori names on births list and – oh dear – see what they found!

January 6, 2015
Sorry, we can't call him Alf...the regulations require he be given a Maori name...

Sorry, we can’t call him Alf…the regulations demand he be called Hone..

Dunno if we are supposed to feel guilty.

But the precious prats at Radio NZ, who relish showing off their Te Reo to an audience comprising many listeners with no inkling of what they are saying, now seems to be rebuking Kiwis for not thinking about indigenous options when they name their kids.

A news item today is headed “Parents overlook Maori names”.

More likely, parents didn’t overlook these names but preferred non-Maori names.

The news item kicks off with a chiding tone:

Maori names are noticeably absent from the top 100 baby names for 2014 with Anglo-Saxon and biblical names proving most popular.


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A young bloke’s frozen sperm will become the stuff of heated legal argument about its lawful use

January 4, 2015

The sperm from a young filmmaker who died 11 years ago has become the stuff of legal argument.

It’s the sperm of Cameron Duncan, who shared his battle with bone cancer through his short films before his death in November 2003 aged just 17.

According to this report in the Herald on Sunday:

Eleven years on, the case is poised to make legal history.

Before he started chemotherapy, Duncan banked sperm for later use. He made no secret of his wish to father a child in the future and wanted his sperm preserved.

It is understood he signed paperwork giving his mother ownership rights to the sperm if he died.

But it’s not as simple as that in a country with committees set up to regulate just about everything we do.

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Pro-life champions should brace for further advances in the spawning business – including dick transplants

October 7, 2014
Let's try this for size...

Let’s try this for size…

A pro-life advocate (and maybe many of them) has expressed concerns that New Zealand’s first “made-to-order baby” will carry an unfair burden.

Gotta say Alf is troubled, too, by this and other goings-on in the baby-making business, although he does not reject all the advances being made by medical researchers. For example, he sees some merit in the prospect of being given a penis transplant.

This would enable him to step up a few sizes from the present model. Moreover, all going well, he might find one that works.

But he is getting ahead of himself…

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Backing sterilisation will bring more blue votes (probably) than urging help for mum with a record

February 9, 2014

So how long will this go on for, and how many state-run children’s homes will be needed to cope with the consequences of Oriwa Kemp’s fecundity?

Oh – and by the way – will the aforementioned Oriwa Kemp ever get a chance to demonstrate that maybe she can bring up her children without the need for state intervention?

Those are among the lofty questions tackled over the Grumbles’ breakfast table this morning, while we ploughed our way through the Sunday newspapers.

Oriwa Kemp, if you don’t happen to know it, was banged up for a while for cruelty to Rotorua toddler Nia Glassie.

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He was meant to be Messiah, but a spoil-sport American judge has reduced his name to Martin

August 13, 2013

Muhammed has become the most popular name for baby boys in London for the first time.

But across the Atlantic, in Newport, Tennessee, a judge has changed a toddler’s name from Messiah to Martin, saying the religious name was earned by one person and “that one person is Jesus Christ.”

Funny old world, eh?

Alf learned from the Daily Mail (here) that combined spellings of the Islamic prophet’s name have made it the most popular name for newborn boys in England for three years in a row.

They rank higher than other favourites such as Harry and Jack in the top 100 names for boys from the Office for National Statistics.

Now, however, the single variant Muhammad has topped the list in the capital with 768 registered births last year, ahead of Daniel on 666.

When combined with Mohammed, the name was more than double any other with 1479 boys given the name.

Across England, a total of 7,032 babies were given the name using the spellings of Muhammad (18th), Mohammed (25th) and Mohammad (58th) – topping the 6,893 that were called Harry.

Harry and Amelia were the most popular baby names in 2012 for the second year running.

But names such as Hugo, Sonny and Seth for boys, and Ivy, Darcey, Tilly and Violet for girls are storming up the list.

Several modern names which had gained popularity in recent years – Alf is delighted to report – have dropped out of the top 100 altogether.

These include Ashton and Reece for boys and Nicole and Kayla for girls.

Lisa Penney, of the parenting club, believes that while celebrity-styled or unusual names may be fun, parents know their children will ‘probably have an easier ride in the playground if they choose a more traditional name’.

Damned right.

The judge in Tennessee who changed a seven-month-old boy’s name from Messiah to Martin is Child Support Magistrate Lu Ann Ballew.

Dunno if she would want to be called Lu, if she realised that this is remarkably similar to loo, which is another word for dunny Down Under.

Never mind. The fact is she ordered the name change last week, according to WBIR-TV .

The boy’s parents were in court because they could not agree on the child’s last name, but when the judge heard the boy’s first name, she ordered it changed, too.

“It could put him at odds with a lot of people and at this point he has had no choice in what his name is,” Ballew said.

It was the first time she ordered a first name change, the judge said.

But hey. The report which brought this matter to the Grumbles’ attention said Messiah was No. 4 among the fastest-rising baby names in 2012, according to the Social Security Administration’s annual list of popular baby names.

The judge seems to have been oblivious to that fact.

The judge in eastern Tennessee said the baby was to be named Martin DeShawn McCullough, which includes both parents’ last name.

The boy’s mother, Jaleesa Martin, of Newport, said she will appeal. She says Messiah is unique and she liked how it sounded alongside the boy’s two siblings — Micah and Mason.

“Everybody believes what they want so I think I should be able to name my child what I want to name him, not someone else,” Martin said.

But Judge Ballew said the name Messiah could cause problems if the child grows up in Cocke County, which has a large Christian population.

“The word Messiah is a title and it’s a title that has only been earned by one person and that one person is Jesus Christ,” the judge said.

But the parents of this child don’t have to stick with Martin, surely.

And if they want to go for something Biblical, well, as you can learn here, there are some 200 names and titles of Christ found in the Bible.

The site lists some of the more prominent ones, organized in three sections relating to names that reflect the nature of Christ, His position in the tri-unity of God, and His work on earth on our behalf.

One of the listed names is Judge.

Wonder what Judge Bellew would make of that.

If you want to be smart, keep off the bottle and stay latched to your mum’s breast for as long as you can

July 30, 2013

When asked (as he often is) about his stupendously high intelligence, Alf has given the credit to his genes.

But perhaps another factor comes into considerations.

This possibility (if not likelihood) is raised by a study that suggests the longer a person is breastfed, the greater is his or her receptive language at 3 years of age and verbal and nonverbal intelligence at age 7 years.

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Kyle’s mum can take heart – there will be a place for her lad in a Trappist choir, if he remains mute

March 23, 2013

Alf was fascinated by a report in the Dom-Post today (see here) about a lad of almost five who has taken reticence to an extreme.

The lad’s name is Kyle Sell and he has never talked.

He does not know his own name and has only just moved from a cot to a bed.

And the medical profession is baffled.

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Parents who don’t normally treasure your kids, please pay attention: this weekend is for you

March 2, 2013

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Oh, Gawd. Alf had been preparing to take refuge in the Eketahuna Club while Children’s Day was celebrated tomorrow.

But he had better get moving now and take refuge today.

He knew Children’s Day is officially marked on Sunday 3 March. Forewarned was forearmed.

But his colleague and good friend , Paula Bennett, has just advised him (here) the entire weekend will see communities get together across the country to celebrate children and positive parenting.

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