A trip to Tinui was tempting on this special day – that’s where the first Anzac Day service was held

April 25, 2015
The Anzac Day cross above Tinui township, a 40-minute drive east of Masterton,

The Anzac Day cross above Tinui township, not too far from Alf’s home. 

First priority for Alf today was to get down to the Anzac Day service at 10am.

The Grumbles had been tempted to go to Tinui, on this 100th anniversary of the Gallipoli landing, but opted to stick with the home town’s service.

Tinui was tempting because it’s not too far from Eketahuna and plays a proud role in the history of  Anzac Day: 

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The Glenn Inquiry gives us a much better idea of how the little ones were treated in the past

June 17, 2014

Thanks to Lindsay Mitchell (here), Alf has some idea of what to expect when he gets around to reading the report from the Glenn Inquiry which has become the talk of the town.

She points out that a large majority of submitters were female and we are hence given the resounding impression that the overwhelming problem lies with men.

It seems she thinks otherwise and Alf is tempted to agree.

But that’s not all. She adds:

Oh and the colonist-blaming conveniently pops up.

Mitchell quotes this bit of the report.

Māori were once a people who held in high esteem their tamariki (children) and wāhine (women) because of the treasured roles they had in their whānau, hapū (sub-tribe) and iwi (tribe). Nevertheless, colonisation brought with it new ways, including privileging the place of men, which rendered women and children as their possessions (Section 4, p127).

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Let’s establish Christopher Columbus’s whakapapa – then widen Treaty claims to take in the USA

September 29, 2012

A 15th century map of Taranaki?


Maori should be alerted to the possibility that Christopher Columbus was one of them.

Likelihood, actually.

Alf mentions this matter on learning (here) that politicians on the Spanish isle of Ibiza are claiming Christopher Columbus was from there.

This island apparently is better known as a haunt for booze-cruise Brits, all-night clubbing and hard-core house music.

But local political leaders are aiming to re-brand the island as the home of America’s discoverer.

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Thanks for the cultural reprimand, Tuku – but now go and check out how long water has been here

September 17, 2012

Alf remembers Tuku Morgan as a bloke with a high regard for his nether regions, which he adorned in top-quality undies.

This is noted at Wikipedia (here), which reminds us that during Tuku’s term in Parliament he was involved in a number of controversies.

One scandal in 1997 revolved around his spending NZ$4000 of Aotearoa Television funds on clothes including a pair of $89 underpants.

Mrs Grumble admires a fellow who dresses well and while she questioned whether the public should have funded Tuku’s shopping for a wardrobe, she could not fault the splendid way he looked after being mockered up in $4000 worth of duds, although (she confided to her sister-in-law) she would rather have liked to see him in his undies.

As things turned out, his parliamentary career didn’t last all that long and he has finished up as an adviser or a courtier or whatever in the court of King Tuheitia.

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Dem bones, dem bones, are best kept secret, if you happen to dig some up in the basement

April 20, 2012

It's better to find a bone that's much too big to be human.

If you happen to dig up a bone on your property, Alf’s advice is to keep quiet about it.

Especially if it is a somewhat bigger bone than your dog might have buried.

The trouble with finding bones is that they might be human.

And the trouble with finding they might be human bones is that you will then have an army of busy-bodies crawling all over your property, mumbling prayers, engaging in anthropological digging and otherwise being a pain in the arse.

It is understandable that the cops should want to show an interest. Who knows what foul deed might have been committed?

The cops, of course, will have to call on a pathologist.

But a small army of other tossers will want to invade your patch, too.

That’s what has happened in Hamilton in recent days, although Alf is happy to concede that in this case the property-owner is relaxed about the home invasion triggered by the discovery.

The Herald tells the story here.

Two children playing at their Hamilton home discovered what could be a 100-year-old human bone.

Sarah Nathan said she was surprised when her children presented her with the bone, which they had found in a dirt bank at their MacDiarmid Rd home in Beerescourt while playing on Monday.

They initially thought it was from an animal but a pathologist said it was a human thigh bone.

“It is just in an area under the house where we store building materials,” said Ms Nathan.

“The kids were digging around in the dirt and it was just sticking out and they pulled it out.”

Hmm. Naturally, the cops will want to establish whose bone it is, how old it is and anything else to explain how it got there.

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Hitler’s birthplace is moved and his honours removed: a cautionary tale about local body reform

July 9, 2011

He was a cute little bastard at this age...

Funny buggers, your Austrians.

They gave civilization Haydn, Mozart, Schubert, Mahler and a bunch of Strausses.

But they contributed to decivilization, too.

They gave us Maria Anna Schicklgruber, who spawned an illegitimate baby who became a bigger bastard when he grew up.

One of the great bastards of history, actually.

Yep. Adolf Hitler.

But it has taken some time for some bits of Austria to recognise it’s a bad look to keep Adolf on as an honorary citizen.

A few weeks back, several towns in Austria were checking their archives to see if Adolf Hitler was still an honorary citizen of their communities.

It follows an announcement by the town of Amstetten that – more than 60 years after his death – it was finally revoking Hitler’s honorary title.

Hitler visited Amstetten – west of Vienna – in 1938, and was made an honorary citizen the following year.

Just one thing bothers Alf about this.

It’s the small matter of the role played by the Green Party in having Hitler dishonoured.

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Today’s NZRU bosses have stuff to say sorry for, but 1928-60 tour decisions are not among them

April 5, 2010

Alf is seriously discomforted by the urge among modern-day malcontents to demand apologies for the mischief done to their ancestors.

Clamouring for such apologies is something he expects from Pita Sharples, our Minister of Maori Affairs, of course. Sharples is a chronic complainant about all sorts of things, particularly if a racist edge to whatever happened can be found.

Sure enough – Sharples is now wailing about the Rugby Union’s disinclination to apologise to former Maori players – and their families – for excluding them from past tours to South Africa on racial grounds.
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Hoots mon – it’s a bloody big fish

March 10, 2009

Throw away your history books. Or at least rip out the chapter on the discovery of America.

The Telegraph today reports

The 15th century explorer who opened up the American continents to Europe was actually called Pedro Scotto – not Christopher Columbus – and his family originally hailed from Scotland, a Spanish historian has claimed.

Alfonso Ensenat de Villalonga has disputed conventionally-accepted narratives on the explorer’s origins – that he was the son of a weaver in Genoa, Italy, or that he was from Catalonia or Galicia in Spain.

In fact, he was from Genoa, but he was “the son of shopkeepers not weavers and he was baptised Pedro not Christopher,” Mr Villalonga told Spain’s ABC newspaper on Sunday.

And his family name was Scotto, and was not Italian but of Scottish origin.

Alf is thinking of bringing this Villalonga bloke out to Newzild to check out a theory he has long harboured: that Maui was a Scotsman who set out to hook the Lake Ness Monster. He lost his way, finished up in the South Pacific, dropped his line, and – yep. You know the rest.

If the theory be true, there will be no need to persist with the treaty. Both parties to it – you see – were British.