Posts by George Darroch

  • Feed: Fulminating and fermenting,

    I don't mind bitterness. It's the hops that get me, being unpleasantly sedative. It is quite like mixing alcohol and marijuana, feeling utterly dazed and slightly nauseous. Body-hopped, if you will.*

    It seems to have got slightly better around Wellington in recent months, but if I'm in a craft beer bar I'll usually ask for a beer which is low on the hops.

    *I don't own a car, but I do wonder if the effect on others is sufficient to increase their risk, even at low levels of consumption.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • Access: Power to (all) the people!,

    My experience is that political parties are actually rather keen to encourage diversity and participation. They aren't value-free vessels though, and the constraints on promoting people relate to the talents and experience, and 'fit' with the values of that party. In the Greens, 4 of 36, or slightly above 10% of ranked candidates are disabled. Two were very recent members, both encouraged and inspired by the success of a profoundly deaf Mojo Mathers, and the other was a long-standing member with a lot to give. I would encourage participation in parties, but put the caveat that only the exceptional (of any identity) get promoted quickly through the ranks.

    I asked a friend in the sector recently what the sector's "minimum demands" were. He replied that there were no unified demands, as there were too many actors across a range of disabilities. As someone on the outside who would like to be supportive, I'd like to see a few clear messages and demands that crystalise political action.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Friday Music: Good ideas and grumbles,

    A tweet by Aaron Hawkins gives me an idea:

    In the spirit of celebrating small victories, getting a bunch of @FishriderNZ tunes put up as DCC hold music cc @southernscoop

    There's a lot music out there, and by now we're all entirely sick of Nature's Best (if we weren't within weeks or months). Is there any attempt from NZ labels like Arch Hill or Flying Nun to give their music to the people in this format? Hold music is hardly glamorous, but it is a source of revenue.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Friday Music: Good ideas and grumbles,

    It’s well established that venues make their money from alcohol (and in some places, food). Since rents are high and door takings are low, it makes sense to put the bands on later, in order to maximise revenue coming in over the bar.

    The problem is that all of this has to compete with other forms of entertainment. It also has to compete with incomes that are pressured by high rents or mortgage repayments and other cost of living pressures.

    Suddenly the dynamics of a live venue change, and its hospitability and warmth become important. Different things are going to work with different people, but having more formats with which to experience music is definitely a good thing. It isn’t summer time year round, but most of the time I’d rather see the same band at 7pm outdoors at Splore.

    Edit:

    I'm also in the position right now of organising a fundraising gig, in a traditional venue with a traditional format. In order to fill the venue sufficiently, we need a good headliner, or several relatively well known bands. We're getting there, but it's hard work - not many musicians guarantee a crowd. (The ones we know are all at a wedding that weekend...)

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Friday Music: Good ideas and grumbles,

    This is an interesting debate for me.

    I think there are a few different things happening. Firstly, music is shifting on to computers and electronic devices. There are still plenty of radios in the country, and will be for many years, but the consumption of music is an entirely different thing than it was ten or even five years ago.

    When I go out to a venue to pay money to see live music, I like to know that I'm going to get quality. That comes in the form of either reputation, or having heard their music - usually on Active or bFM. I don't have a radio at the moment having come back from overseas it is a priority but nowhere near the top - therefore that sound isn't getting through to me yet. A radio is no longer an essential item for young people, and that makes a difference.

    I imagine that most New Zealanders are in a position where they are affected by these. Shifting digitally, and underexposed to local music through radio. This is why things like the Audience ( which promoted here) are important, for creating spaces which people frequent and are able to expose themselves to content. That exposure then directly translates into familiarity and willingness to see musicians.

    The functional death of the record store, and the end of free to air music television in New Zealand are both similarly contributing factors.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Not even a statistic,

    I don’t try to teach them “just stop”, instead I try to teach them that girls and women are people, human beings that deserve respect, kindness, and to be treated with dignity. Girls and women aren’t objects for the male gaze, or toys for male pleasure.

    And that women have empowerment and agency and sexuality, and that they can choose and enjoy. It's strongly inculcated ideas which repeated frequently enough can make a rape invisible, to a rapist, most a room of jurors, and on a bad day even the victim.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Going solar?,

    Mind you I’ve never run the numbers because I rent, which makes the whole thing a bit academic |:

    Yeah. I think I'll have to get a hut in the sticks before I can afford to contemplate this kind of exercise. However, being small it won't demand such a large system.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Going solar?,

    I think PV seems like the better option, and that internationally prices of modules are crashing. However, the "New Zealand markup" will be steep, and the installation will be a large part (possibly the majority) of the cost. I have not idea what the actual economics in an Auckland real-world situation stack up to.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Why a renter died from turning…,

    When we increase the responsibilities of landlords this will become even more important. For example, we will require them to insulate their houses, and install and maintain long-life fire alarms. Houses lacking these also kill and injure people.

    We've realised the connection between housing and people's health and wellbeing, and we are increasingly a nation of renters. I think we need a national register of rental properties and owners, and this is an excellent way to begin the conversation.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • Access: What looks good to me,

    Thanks Chelle. As a (relatively) healthy able-bodied person, this is encouraging to me. It's interesting how these same things can hold us back, no matter our physical condition. I have a small thing which can cause enough pain and discomfort to make me feel a loss of control over many other things.

    Definitely endorse Hilary's comment about Vit-D. Because of high UV levels New Zealanders don't get as much sunlight as they might otherwise, and vitamin D 3 and other sun synthesised hormones are often highly lacking. The further south you are, the more likely this is. Attempting to get sunlight and adding with supplementation is important for anyone, but particularly anyone with an immune condition. Interesting research suggests that depression itself is immune-linked.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2119 posts Report Reply

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