Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: Lessons from Nature

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  • Russell Brown,

    Communication is not a luxury, it's a necessity and like it or not, Bill, this is how we do it now. It's sort of like a telephone, right, but I can talk to a whole bunch of people at once.

    It seems worth noting that pretty much all the stuff the big international news organisations got for the first three hours after the quake was from folks they'd found on Twitter or talking to their webcams.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 19116 posts Report Reply

  • JackElder,

    Pointy bits on churches:

    Remember: God really wants you to build a bunker.

    Wellington • Since Mar 2008 • 708 posts Report Reply

  • philipmatthews,

    Old stone churches, sure, but it seems to me that hairdressers have been hit disproportionately hard. Not sure what that says -- if anything -- about the quake as an act of God.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2007 • 646 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Brislen,

    How did I miss that XKCD? That's gold...

    And here I was foolishly thinking BillR had come over all social media-ist what with his Twitter account and all... haven't heard from him for a while, not since he became a PR man.

    and the least said about that the better.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 179 posts Report Reply

  • Megan Wegan,

    The thing I noticed on my very brief jaunt to Christchurch on the weekend, is how tired people are. And how the earthquake, as Emma says, really is the only topic of conversation. Which is fine for me, visiting for less than 48 hours, but you guys must just be knackered.

    (I maybe therefore shouldn't have kept Emma out til 1am, but never mind.)

    Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1273 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    The thing I noticed on my very brief jaunt to Christchurch on the weekend, is how tired people are.

    It's amazing how far and hard you can go on pure nervous energy (or not entirely safe levels of adrenaline and other chemical lovelies, if you want to be unromantic about it). Problem is that when you hit the floor -- and hard -- it's seldom pretty.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12073 posts Report Reply

  • Megan Wegan,

    Problem is that when you hit the floor -- and hard -- it's seldom pretty.

    Yeah, that was kind of what worried me. There's some people down there who are going to need some very long holidays.

    Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1273 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __,

    My brain started working again sometime during Wednesday last week: it was amazing, life became so much easier! Then we had that bad couple of nights and I was back to working on back-up braincells and I kept forgetting the words for things.

    I hate to imagine the mental state I'd be in if my home had been damaged and if I was still having to use a Portaloo, like the good folk of Brooklands are.

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3494 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    ...starring Poser Parker...

    Now, not only does he get to stay mayor of Christchurch...

    ...not so fast there, please!
    let's at least wait till the voting finishes...


    having your tonsorials out...

    ...but it seems to me that hairdressers have been hit disproportionately hard.

    that'll keep the barberians beyond the pale...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 5169 posts Report Reply

  • Megan Wegan,

    I hate to imagine the mental state I'd be in if my home had been damaged and if I was still having to use a Portaloo, like the good folk of Brooklands are.

    Oh, Lilith, my cousin's pretty much destroyed house is in Brooklands, and we we went out there on Saturday morning. I really don't know how people are doing it.

    Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1273 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __,

    A friend of mine from Up North was commenting this morning that her Chch friends were fairly upbeat for the first few days: relieved to be OK, happy that nobody died, letting people know that the damage not as bad (or at least not as widespread) as portrayed in the media.

    But then by the middle of that first week (and after that big aftershock on the Wednesday morning) even the calmest of us was getting rattled and upset and cranky. And now, a couple of weeks on, we begin to appreciate exactly how much heritage we're losing, a lot of us are sad and grieving and worrying how the long period of reconstruction will affect our jobs and prospects.

    In the first few days I was so busy telling my out-of-town friends that it wasn't so bad; now I want to say, "Far out, it is bad! Bring back the sympathy and attention! We need it after all!"

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3494 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __,

    Oh, Lilith, my cousin's pretty much destroyed house is in Brooklands, and we we went out there on Saturday morning.

    Wow, that is awful, Megan. I hope they have heaps of support.

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3494 posts Report Reply

  • Megan Wegan,

    Far out, it is bad! Bring back the sympathy and attention! We need it after all!"

    I can't speak for anyone else, but you have my sympathy. I cried driving along Victoria Street. And Papanui Road.

    I hope they have heaps of support.

    Truckloads. Mostly in the form of mocking them for moving in with their parents. But, you know, with love. That's how we roll in the Wegan family.

    And how come we didn't see you at the pub on Saturday?

    Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1273 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    But then by the middle of that first week (and after that big aftershock on the Wednesday morning) even the calmest of us was getting rattled and upset and cranky.

    I think, too, for the first week or so the earthquakes were all-consuming. Every other problem in your life went on hold. Now we're dealing with work and school and family problems, on top of the pervasive lack of sleep, and the ever-present stress, because even if you yourself are not the completely strung-out type you'll be dealing with someone who is, or whose losses have been much more serious.

    Also, I think everyone was initially well pleased with the speed of the response. Now, people are starting to find they're getting totally contradictory messages, in some cases all of them from the Council, their homes are in limbo while life is expected to continue.

    And you know, there's something about a natural disaster that you expect to be calamitous, but sharp and short. It hits, it's over, the recovery starts. I don't think anyone was really expecting aftershocks hard enough to knock me over in the shower two weeks on.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4379 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    I cried driving along Victoria Street. And Papanui Road.

    Me too, though it was more sort of "what kind of a universe sends this level of damage but leaves Camelot Court completely untouched?"

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4379 posts Report Reply

  • Megan Clayton,

    The anecdotes that I continue to hear of children and older folk who remain paralysed with anxiety and unable to return to any simulacrum of life as usual - even in undamaged homes - gives me pause. There seems to be a significant number of Christchurch people who are stuck in those initial moments of fear.

    I continue to feel angry in this regard at the rumour-mongering, during that first week of aftershocks, by people who should have known better. The number of variants I heard on the bullshit story that relief workers had been "sent home to be with their families" in anticipation of a massive aftershock, and the terror this instilled in people whose nerves were already frayed, was frustrating to say the least.

    This was for me the downside of social media (particularly Facebook) through all this. On some afternoons it became the equivalent of students gossiping before school assembly. Not everyone has the resources to sift useful news from nonsense, and many people seemed to regulate their own fear by passing it on to others.

    Christchurch • Since Feb 2007 • 50 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    those wooses in Wasilla...
    meanwhile on the other side of the Pacific
    a small quake of 4.9 hits Anchorage

    There were no reports of injury or damage, but people reported that the earthquake "shook awful hard," said Cindi Preller, a geologist with the West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center...
    "Some flatware pieces fell off the stands," Withers said. "A few customers were nervous about the noise of glassware rattling."

    I don't get out of bed for 4.9s anymore...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 5169 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock,

    So we've had two of the Four Elements of the Apocalypse come through in the last two weeks (Earth and Air).

    Anyone know when we can expect Fire and Water to show up?

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark,

    Don't, Rich. Just. Don't.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3123 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __,

    I can't speak for anyone else, but you have my sympathy.

    Aw, thanks. :-)

    And how come we didn't see you at the pub on Saturday?

    I'm a Pub Vampire: I have to be invited, before I can cross the threshold.

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3494 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __,

    "what kind of a universe sends this level of damage but leaves Camelot Court completely untouched?"

    It'll be more dramatic when the trebuchet hits.

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3494 posts Report Reply

  • Heather W.,

    Graeme Hill from RadioLive was talking to someone from Newcastle (Australia) about their major earthquake (1989). One of his comments that for some, the hardest times to deal with were actually about three months afterwards.

    Anyone know when we can expect Fire and Water to show up?

    Some of Southland probably think that they have had quite enough snow (frozen water).

    North Shore • Since Nov 2008 • 187 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Got to get you into my life...

    So we've had two of the Four Elements of the Apocalypse come through in the last two weeks (Earth and Air).

    Anyone know when we can expect Fire and Water to show up?

    I think Fire and Water have been busy in Australia recently (though we've had a fair bit of water action)
    maybe these polar Winds will bring over some of Australia's Locusts...
    ;- )

    ...but spare a thought for this weekend's start to the Alexandra Blossom Festival here's hoping the wild wintry weather (and locusts) stay away for that....

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 5169 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    your url doesn't hurl...

    It'll be more dramatic when the trebuchet hits.

    I'm guessing you mean the siege machine
    and not the Microsoft© font...
    ...though Bill Gates is a bit of a tosser
    ;- )

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 5169 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    Anyone know when we can expect Fire and Water to show up?

    Workers cut through a water main in Manners Mall!

    Pics of the massive spurting urban geyser.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1878 posts Report Reply

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