Toileting with boys is one thing but with two girls...
I shall relate this tale on the basis that they're not reading it and nor is their mother.
Picture, if you will Dad with two daughters (3 and 6 I want to say) on a trip to the zoo. It's a lovely day and the park is mostly empty, however when I realise my bladder is full to overflowing and will require me to either burst or find a lavvy, trouble sets in.
Neither girl will stand outside. Both insist on coming in as well.
OK, fine but this isn't one of your new fangled bathrooms, this is old school Auckland Zoo (under the stone bridge for those that remember that part of the zoo) and involves a long trench-like affair I refer to as The Trough for the weeing.
Nobody else is within cooee so I make a Dad Decision and head on in with both girls in tow, holding hands sweetly as they are won't to do.
The floor is slick as only a mensroom floor can be. "Stay here" I declare in my sternest voice while I proceed to The Trough.
For those not familiar with male public toilets, let me tell you that The Trough has been replaced with The Bowls, a single pisser affair that is much less entertaining. Troughs and Bowls have one thing in common - a regularly pre-programmed flush that kicks in no matter what else is happening roughly every two or three minutes.
There I am, mid flow as it were, when the flush kicks in but unlike a normal "woosh/reset" toilet, The Trough is roughly 100 years old and so consists of clanking that emanates from the cisterns (strategically placed above the exit), much banging of pipes as air blocks are sorted out, wheezing as if from a nearby dragon and much screaming from the two children.
"DADDDDYYYYY" they shriek as they run forward to safety and me.
"NOOOOOOO" I shriek as they try to rugby tackle me mid stream.
"ARRRRGH!" they scream as they bounce off me, and the eldest one slips, rolls and manages to pull both her and her sister into the downstream portion of The Trough.
"EWWWWW" we all shriek together.
Eventually we depart the mensroom firm in our agreement that we shall never speak of it again.
Wales, hands down and I say that as a one-eyed loyal Wales supporter.
Many reasons - the red is a great colour, it's not green with a yellow stripe painted on it and it's second only to the All Blacks in terms of good looking kit.
What would make it better would be to get rid of the Prince's white feathers (sigh) and bring back the dragon and THEN we'd have a kit worth playing in.
Plus SA has some kind of four legged food group on theirs.
I'm voluntarily having my house pulled apart around me and find it incredibly stressful. I can only imagine what having it done involuntarily and overseen by bureaucratic nutters would do to your heads...
That you haven't all bought torches and pitchforks and stormed parliament is a testament to your strength of character. Or to the lack of pitchforks.
Either way, well done.
I took my kids to something a few months ago and they wanted to play on the outdoor bouncy castles. We wandered over and discovered a giant inflatable slide - The Titanic Of Bouncy Slides (or similar) which depicted that grand vessel sliding beneath the waves in a not-very-realistic manner.
I was startled by it, but nobody else seemed at all concerned. It was, after all, just an inflatable slide. Never mind the scores of people who died on the ship itself.
I thank you kindly. My code-fu is well, let's face it, non-existent.
oh, that's a pig's ear. Apologies.
I'm not sure whether it's a response to too much sugar or some kind of early morning/daylight savings issue deep inside my brain, but can I just recommend Matthew Hooton's piece in the NBR: [url|http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/i-did-not-have-sexual-relations-woman-matthew-hooton-ck-138203]
The Alpine fault may preclude a data centre in that particular corner of the world but the model still holds. We have cheap power, it's mostly green, we're remote, our land is cheap and our political system is stable. We have the capability but two technical issues stand in our way: lack of choice in international capacity (not capacity itself mind you) and latency.
International capacity is the chicken and egg issue - if we had a data centre we would export data therefore another fibre link to the world would be a no-brainer. But we can't get that fibre link without increasing the need for capacity. This kind of issue can be broken but only by a government I would suggest.
The second problem is trickier - latency. It's a long way to the world from here and in internet time, latency means that first few seconds spent watching the hourglass/bouncy ball/icon of your choice is a killer.
However, latency only really impacts on real-time applications (such as games and voice/video calling) and doesn't matter a jot when it comes to file locker apps like Dropbox or even Mega.
With HTML5 (sorry) comes multi-threaded downloads (again, sorry about that). Instead of connecting to a server, opening one connection and downloading the whole thing on one stream, HTML5 allows the server to deliver multiple threads of data to the customer. By the time they've watched/stored the first chunk, the rest is past the point of worrying about latency and on its way.
Unfortunately we have no vision for ICT beyond "yeah, we'd better have a policy" and that means even though we have an industry that could rival dairy farming in terms of input to GDP, we'll never take advantage of it because computers and the internet are just for geeks.
They were more personalities – radio hosts, fashionistas and socialites.
hopefully that looks more quote like than my previous attempt.
I struck this on a certain PR gig I did. Marketing set up a “launch” and invited thought leaders, celebrities, fashionistas and the like. They spent a lot of money getting them along, gave them devices and things to play with and … it all disappeared into the ether. Not one of them had any interest in talking about the kit at all.
This also is a risk for such strategies, that and having an angry PR fellow shout at you for wasting an opportunity on fluffy bunnies.
EDIT: many edits for the dumb
That's the place! The Swan and Dolphin... really quite hideous. Surreal from memory (mostly blacked out now).
It was always entirely up to us as reporters to find a good story. There was never any pressure on me to come back with something friendly about the company who paid - quite the opposite. I suspect several editors (myself included when it was my turn) took great delight in finding serious dirt on a company that had shelled out in that respect.
One particularly awful trip included flying halfway round the planet for an announcement about a major contract that, it turned out, hadn't actually been signed. We all (roughly 400 journos from around the world) sat in the auditorium and asked awkward questions of the CEO about the deal he couldn't announce and his recently woeful quarterly figures. He resigned not long after.