Getting a big buzz from drones – the racing sounds like fun (and has surveillance potential too)

June 21, 2015
Keeping an eye on what's going on at Labour Party HQ in Eketahuna could be fun.

Keeping an eye on what’s going on at Labour Party HQ here in Eketahuna could be fun.

Get a butchers at this, Mrs Grumble urged Alf.

She has long felt his hobbies should be stretched beyond whisky tasting and beer sculling (his prowess at the latter activity was considerable in his younger days, by the way, although he never turned professional).

And now she had found (she said) a new sport that should not stretch him physically.

The prospect of engaging in a new sport without being stretched physically naturally is highly attractive.

Mind you, the same can be said of pigeon racing, and Alf never took to that.

Or rather, to be honest, Mrs Grumble never took to it.

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Twosome from St Bede’s (with litigious dads) fail to make list of lads who will row at trials

March 30, 2015

The newspapers are relishing reporting the updates on two boys who were banned from competing in the Maadi Cup rowing regatta after riding on the baggage carousel at Auckland Airport.

These are the boys with over-protective dads who went to court to prevent school authorities from punishing them by imposing the rowing bans.

Now – it transpires – they have missed out on being named for the national rowing trial at Lake Karapiro near Cambridge from April 12-18 or the South Island trial from April 10-12 at Lake Ruataniwha near Twizel.

Alf understands these rowing trials have something to do with boats and oars rather than heated argument.

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Shoot – it sounds like a race row but Dame Susan prefers to stay off the court this time

February 6, 2015


Here's how to respond to questions of discrimination against non-Maori -

Here’s how to respond to questions of discrimination against non-Maori –

Dunno what to make of the fuss about the Maori basketball tournament that became the stuff of a Waitangi Day controversy.

Perhaps there’s some confusion about the rules and how they should be interpreted.

This is appropriate for a Waitangi Day controversy because the Treaty of Waitangi – clause two, anyway – is most certainly open to all sorts of interpretation.

It is understandable therefore that a spin doctor in the office of Sports Minister Jonathan Coleman opted to decline comment rather than be lured into denouncing anything that might involve racially discriminatory rules being enforced against non-Maori.

The spin doctor would have recognised that our Government tolerates discrimination against non-Maori, in the spirit of regarding indigenous citizens as special, and so this was an occasion when it was best to stay silent.

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Golfers shouldn’t be handicapped – or barred from the trough – just because they fail a poverty test

December 24, 2014
It's just a case of making the right pitch to have the millions spent here...

It’s just a case of making the right pitch to have the millions spent here…

Alf’s good mate Steven Joyce is a beneficent bugger – a sort of Father Christmas for the well-off.

He distributes his largesse not on the basis of whether the beneficiary has been good or naughty over the past year, but whether he, she or it mixes in the right circles.

These are circles of people plush with money and an urge to donate to the National Party, usually to ensure against the election of a leftie or greenie government.

Steven accordingly would not have needed too much persuading when asked to consider whether taxpayers should bankroll the New Zealand Open golf tournament.

Too damned right they should.

Some niggly tossers ask: but will there be a positive return?

It doesn’t matter. We don’t get a positive return, so far as Alf can see, from the money biffed at domestic purpose beneficiaries and other people down on their uppers.

Why should golf be different?
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The next man in as world cricket boss is chosen (and it’s not his bowling action that is suspect)

June 30, 2014
"But will I be bowled when that report comes out in September?"

“But will I be bowled when that report comes out in September?”

Alf missed the news last week that the International Cricket Council is to have a new boss soon.

He is none other than Narayanaswami Srinivasan, an Indian gentleman with pots of money.

There’s just one problem. Or rather, there’s at least one problem.

He is not currently acting as chairman of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) while an investigation is being conducted into allegations of match-fixing related to the Chennai Super Kings, the team owned by Srinivasan’s company, India Cements.

His son-in-law, Gurunath Meiyappan, has been arrested and charged with illegally providing information to bookmakers.

And as a Guardian writer reminds us, Srinivasan was so obstructive to the course of justice that the supreme court of India demanded he step down from the BCCI.

“It is nauseating that Srinivasan continued as BCCI chief,” said Justice AK Patnaik. “He should go if cricket is to be cleaned.”


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Grant Dalton should forget about taxpayers puffing more wind into Team NZ’s sails

June 14, 2014
Bugger...let's see if Steven can get us ship-shape again.

Bugger…let’s see if Steven Joyce can get us ship-shape again.

Here’s hoping the Team New Zealand mob have kept enough of the taxpayers’ money in a kitty for a small farewell party.

That thought struck the member for Eketahuna North while he mused on the team’s latest bleat about its money problems.

Without an immediate cash injection – according to Grant Dalton – the syndicate will be “gone by the end of the month”.


A fortnight hence Team NZ could be sunk.

Or so it seems, because the Herald reported:

With their bridging finance fast running out Grant Dalton yesterday reiterated the team’s dire financial position, warning without an immediate cash injection from the Government the syndicate would be “gone by the end of the month”.

“If we go, there ain’t no coming back. The start-up price of a team from scratch is so astronomical that it will never happen in this country.”

Alf happens to be sublimely indifferent to the fate of the boaties. If they can make it by themselves, good on them. If they can’t, too bad.


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If you want to see a cover-up, leave Crusher alone and check out the dress code in Qatar

May 29, 2014


The Grumbles have never been great enthusiasts for soccer, or any sport where the players are apt to kiss and hug each other and otherwise display unseemly behaviour.

The won’t, therefore, be travelling to Qatar for the 2022 World Cup, some eight years hence.

Among other things, Alf by then will be … well, let’s say of mature years in the age department.

In some respects this is a shame because it means the Grumbles won’t enjoy the spectacle of soccer fans – a boozy, brawling bunch of hooligans, by all accounts – getting to grips with the dress and behaviour code of Qatar.

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Deciding how much lolly taxpayers should toss at billionaires like Larry comes down to balance

September 29, 2013

Uh, oh. A very tart email has been despatched by Steven Joyce, Lord High Most Things in your splendid National-led Government.

Steven is far from pleased at the previous post on Alf’s blog.

That post was critical of the boat building industry for pleading for more swill from the corporate welfare trough after things went sour for us in San Francisco.

The Marine Industry Association was aiming to double the sector’s exports to more than $1.3 billion in the next seven years, but this target was largely based on the America’s Cup being hosted in New Zealand.

So they had backed the wrong boat.

That was much too harsh, Steven has told your hard-working member for Eketahuna North.

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When you bet your future on the loser it takes gall to expect Govt help to get you back on an even keel

September 27, 2013

Let’s see if we’ve heard this right.

The Marine Industry Association is calling on the Government for support in the wake of Team New Zealand’s failure to win the America’s Cup.

Presumably they are banging on about financial support.

They want taxpayers to help them make more money.

Radio NZ told us of this brazen bid to dip into the corporate welfare trough earlier today.

The item also tells us the association took a punt – and lost.

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Gorgeous Gussie knew how to draw a crowd – and it wasn’t by spattering asterisks over her knickers

March 27, 2013
How to shock the Brits without slogans...

How to shock the Brits without using the Ni*** word…

Dunno if use of the Ni*** word is more generally repugnant than use of the c*** word.

Come to think of it, how do you pronounce Ni***?

The question is raised in the light of a fuss reported here about some words on a Christchurch roller derby player’s shorts.

According to the headline, the shorts sparked a racism row, although nothing in the report mentions anything that the Grumbles would regard as racist.

They are struggling, actually, to work out what the allegedly offensive words might mean.

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