Posts by David Haywood

  • Southerly: A Tale of Two Iceblocks: Part…,

    I'm very happy to have a civil discussion on this topic, but -- it just occurred to me -- for some people anthropogenic climate change is a rather emotion-laden issue.

    Could we possibly avoid a stooshie (sp?) about whether the climate scientists and atmospheric physicists are right or wrong -- and concentrate purely on the subject of aligning price signals in New Zealand with desired behaviour in terms of global greenhouse gas emissions?

    Many thanks for your anticipated co-operation!

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1085 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: A Tale of Two Iceblocks: Part…,

    For nigh on 20 years I’ve been attempting to explain this point to people outside the field of energy engineering—with almost zero success (which I’m sure is down to my limited communication skills, alas). I’m hoping that by discussing this in terms of something that all humanity loves and understands—viz. iceblocks—then I might finally manage to make a breakthrough.

    Apologies to those already familiar with the problem (of accounting for New Zealand’s GHG emissions according to the UNFCCC guidelines) if I have made this explanation overly simplistic.

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1085 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: Happy to Help (If I Can),

    A couple of quick replies as my wild animals are keeping me very busy this morning:

    Downbeatdan and Lilith – thank you very much for your kind comments. I’m so delighted if this has managed to bring cheer into a gloomy week.

    Deborah wrote:

    I’m going to have to spend a lot of time processing that story.

    Well I hope some enjoyment is had on the way, Deborah (I don’t think it’s worth too much mental investment as a profound work of literature, alas)!

    And thanks also Paul Brown for your remembrances of Wee Waa. I don’t know if I mentioned it at the time (a lot was happening), but during my last conversation with my boat-building grandfather before he died he mentioned how much he’d enjoyed your recollections of your own ferrocement boat on the discussion thread for his blog post. My grandfather commented that you seemed like a good bloke to have a beer with, and I think you’ve proven it again here. Very much appreciated!

    Paul Campbell wrote:

    I beleive he has hinted that he will in all good time, likely in convenient book form

    Unfortunately I don’t think there’s much market for collections of short stories – particularly a sort of ‘novel of manners’ about a group of squatocrats in pre-earthquake Christchurch!

    [Or, if there is such a market, p=1 (i.e. only me).]

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1085 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: Happy to Help (If I Can),

    Ian Dalziel wrote:

    I’m thinking that South Canterbury is the South Island’s Taranaki, Timaru its Inglewood or Hawera, perhaps Dr Haywood could be its Ronald Hugh Morrieson?

    Oh, I’d kill to be in the same league as Ronald Hugh Morrieson. On the 30th anniversary of his death I cycled from Christchurch to Hawera (had to start before the actual anniversary, of course) and commemorated his genius by having a pint in every pub in town. On the Sunday, I went to an evangelical Christian church located in the former cinema that RHM used to visit as a child. I discovered that church and too much beer are a bad combination; evangelical Christians are awfully loud.

    After lunch, a vodka-swigging Ulsterwoman invited me to see the re-issue of ET in the new cinema, as I recall. I wrote a piece about it for the Listener in early 2003. They’ve yet to get back to me about the publication date (it was pending a decision by the editor last I heard) and I’m starting to wonder if they ever will.

    Sam M wrote:

    Thanks David

    A pleasure Sam – so pleased that you enjoyed it!

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1085 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: Happy to Help (If I Can),

    LeighKennaway wrote:

    ….. just in case anyone was wondering why the Haywood children are trained to do great things with powertools rather than engage in interprative dance or any other stagecraft…..

    My children on stage doesn't bear thinking about. You'd certainly need one of those shepherd's crook things (possibly electrified).

    bob daktari wrote:

    No one mentioned the history of the unification of Timaru when I lived there… I guess some things are just too painful to teach

    Thank you for giving me a pleasant chuckle with your comment, Bob -- much appreciated! Very glad you enjoyed the story...

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1085 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: Happy to Help (If I Can),

    Emma Hart wrote:

    What it lead me to contemplate is a musical version of the sinking of the Ben Venue, about which, as it turns out, Thomas Bracken wrote a poem.

    I’m sure that one of Kylinda’s half-dozen earlier productions must surely have been on this subject. I suspect that a dance version of the Unification of Timaru is something that you have to work up to via a shipwreck. {EDIT: Thank you for inspiration, Emma, I’ve just changed one of the other short stories in this series to mention this: “That’s the memorial to the sinking of the Benvenue,” said Kylinda. “I once did a dance version of that shipwreck. The hall burnt down during the performance, which was kind of ironic when all the dancers on stage were pretending to drown.”]

    Sacha wrote:


    Splendid! My only aim this week is to cheer people up. I’m giving myself a holiday from any intellectual writing – in fact I haven’t written anything intellectual for weeks (2,183 weeks to be exact, which is nearly 42 years).

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1085 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: Happy to Help (If I Can), in reply to steven crawford,

    Did he ever confess to people smuggling?

    Ah, that sounds more like a long series of stories that I told to my children "Emily of the High Seas". She once had a duel with the ship's accountant on a pirate vessel and ended up dramatically throwing her sword through his head. Admittedly this is not exactly like people smuggling, but it's not wholly dissimilar.

    Your kind suggestion has made me think of my times sailing with my grandfather -- I could certainly write something about that.

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1085 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: Happy to Help (If I Can),

    This story was written quite some time ago. Upon re-reading, the weird thing (to me) is how much of it is taken from real life.

    For example, in 1989 I met an Australian from Wee Waa who genuinely claimed that all Australians keep matches in their lavatories, and that it would be unusual for any Australian to pay a visit and not light a match afterwards. I don't think he'd travelled much out of Wee Waa, but I've always cherished his cultural beliefs, and am delighted to be able to share them more widely here (albeit as part of a fictional work).

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1085 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: Happy to Help (If I Can), in reply to Emma Hart,

    Bless you, Emma!

    I’m ashamed to admit that until recently I’d no idea of the history of the unification of Timaru. The first thought that occurred to me on my enlightenment was that modern dance would be the ideal medium to make the story more widely known – particularly the all-important role of the drainage boards, and, of course, the issues with street alignment in the two halves.

    So very glad that it amused…

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1085 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: Happy to Help (If I Can),

    Just in case anyone is worried: another short story in the same series reveals that no-one was hurt in Kylinda and Timothy’s house fire (not even emotionally, it would seem)...

    “They were only things,” said Kylinda. “But we did lose pretty much all of them. I was left with my nightgown; Tim only had his pyjama trousers. In some ways it’s lucky that Rupert was staying because Tim usually sleeps naked, so it could have been worse.”

    Marjorie frowned slightly. She never enjoyed hearing about Kylinda and Timothy’s living arrangements. “Although if Rupert hadn’t been staying then he wouldn’t have set fire to your house in the first place,” she couldn’t help pointing out.

    “It’s amazing that you can be so philosophical about it, Kylinda,” said Emma. They were having lunch in the Ballantyne’s Tearooms. Emma didn’t particularly care for tearoom food, but it seemed almost inconceivable to shop at Ballantyne’s and have lunch anywhere else.

    “Tim reckoned we should just enjoy the spectacle,” continued Kylinda. “ The neighbours gave us blankets and we stood in the firelight and watched everything burn. The best bit was when the Hillman Hunter’s petrol tank exploded—it blew the boot-lid right across the street. Tim said it was the fastest any part of the car had ever gone. It was a quite a shame when the fire brigade arrived and put it out.”

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1085 posts Report Reply

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