Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: Keeping it Weird: A Night Out in Christchurch

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  • Russell Brown,

    Someone, possibly Robert or Megan, might be able to explain to me why Chch has both St Andrew's (College) and Christ's, because for humour purposes they do both seem to fill the same role, and I've never been able to work out what the difference is.

    I think Christ's is nominally Anglican, and St Andrew's is Presbyterian/Scots. St Bede's is for the Mickey Doolans, as they say.

    Christchurch likes to see itself as upstanding, but it always seems to have had a deviant underbelly. Bill Direen reckons it can thank the working-class Irish for that.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17938 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    To be sure, to be sure..

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15711 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    I'm thinking that David H should maybe patent his plot lines and general characterisations just in case someone ever does them better.

    Not that that would happen, cough, but it would be a shame not to make a dime out of the situation.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1612 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    I think Christ's is nominally Anglican, and St Andrew's is Presbyterian/Scots. St Bede's is for the Mickey Doolans, as they say.

    Ah, thank you. Now I know Christ's ranks higher than StAC.

    Christchurch likes to see itself as upstanding, but it always seems to have had a deviant underbelly. Bill Direen reckons it can thank the working-class Irish for that.

    Oh, right, blame it on the gingas again.

    I'm thinking that David H should maybe patent his plot lines and general characterisations just in case someone ever does them better.

    Not that that would happen, cough, but it would be a shame not to make a dime out of the situation.

    I think they should be buried with him, like grave goods.

    Especially that c**t Bollard.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4285 posts Report Reply

  • Megan Wegan,

    I think Christ's is nominally Anglican, and St Andrew's is Presbyterian/Scots. St Bede's is for the Mickey Doolans, as they say.

    Yep.

    And it is the same with the sister schools. Rangi Ruru is Presbyterian, St Margaret's is Anglican. I guess Villa is St Bede's sister school?

    Oh, right, blame it on the gingas again.

    Yep....dyed my hair brown again, so I can join the ginga bashing.

    Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1268 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie,

    The The Canterbury Pilgrims & Early Settlers Association has lowered the bar so that anyone with ancestors who hit the dirt prior to October 31 1876 can join. Which kind of begs the old Groucho Marx question, would you want to join a club that would accept you as a member? Anyway, somehow I don't think that welcome extends to Ngai Tahu.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 3291 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    It would've been quite a while before 1876 - like a couple of centuries - that one set of my ancestors sailed south in the "Desolator" and other craft, and began to take over the Canterbury Plains & peninsula
    by battle, raiding, and intermarriage.
    Waitaha & Kati Mamoe had sailed south quite a bit earlier than that.
    Which is why 'First Four Ships' makes me giggle. Then sigh.

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    And then someone comes along and ruins a perfectly good story with pesky facts:

    Chch NZ's safest large city

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4285 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Ahem. That's reported violence. I know it's not "proof" and I'm not looking to get into a city-slagging match but some of the comments under that story are interesting.

    The stats can certainly be misleading if the widespread perception of risk is enough to keep people away from experiencing reportable violent acts.

    Christchurch felt threatening when I lived there and any time I've visited since. I can imagine that might have been enough to keep me inside especially if I were older or other than pale-skinned. And I'm sure there are parts of Auckland, Wellington and other places where I'd feel the same. Just not necessarily right in the middle of town, and not quite so consistently.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15711 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Christchurch felt threatening when I lived there and any time I've visited since. I can imagine that might have been enough to keep me inside especially if I were older or other than pale-skinned. And I'm sure there are parts of Auckland, Wellington and other places where I'd feel the same. Just not necessarily right in the middle of town, and not quite so consistently.

    I have to agree. The Christchurch CBD unnerves me even in daylight. I've never been approached by so many creepy critters blagging money and cigarettes in Auckland.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17938 posts Report Reply

  • Isabel Hitchings,

    Maybe I'm oblivious but in my 17 or so years living in Christchurch I can count on my fingers the number of times I've felt threatened or unnerved. Admittedly I've spent less time out at night since I had kids but for the decade before that I spent a lot of time out at night often alone and always felt fine - even when I lived in a really scungy house near the Arts Centre in town.

    Christchurch • Since Jul 2007 • 690 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Maybe I'm oblivious but in my 17 or so years living in Christchurch I can count on my fingers the number of times I've felt threatened or unnerved.

    Yeah, me too. It's certainly lower than the number of times I've said 'well, I live here, and that really isn't my experience'.

    Now, I grew up in Timaru, so maybe my 'feeling threatened while out walking alone at 2am' threshhold is unusually high, but Is is from Nelson. So there.

    I wonder if the 'perceived threat' is a side-effect of Christchurch being so centralised, in that all the muntery is pretty much concentrated in one, highly visible place. A lot of it is just 'don't go in the park at night' scare-mongering, though.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4285 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    I noticed that people who had been living in Chch for ages didn't feel the same sense of pervasive menace. But that's exactly what it was like - not regular beatings, but also not like anywhere else I have lived.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15711 posts Report Reply

  • philipmatthews,

    As someone who came to Chch from somewhere much bigger (Auckland), I wonder if the perceived threat is about the absence of people rather than the presence of them. I remember going to see movies at night up at the Palms or Westfield Riccarton and then driving back to St Martins (what's that? 7km or so?) at around 11.30pm and sometimes not seeing another car on the road or a light on in a house. Which is far spookier the first couple of times it happens than if you were driving through some lurid, Travis Bickle-ish scene of urban depravity.

    And then there's that concentrated muntery, and a couple of really shabby streets in the CBD: Gloucester St along the side of The Press building and Hereford along by Scorpio Books could both use some urban renewal. I can see why they feel like the kind of places you could get jumped in.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2007 • 638 posts Report Reply

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