Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: Absence in the Arcades

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  • Lilith __, in reply to Sacha,

    :-D

    [someone want to finish that limerick?]

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3887 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Lilith __,

    there's a limerick in there somewhere..

    ah, editsnap

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19686 posts Report Reply

  • JacksonP,

    The P Jacksons of Nantucket
    Had an incontinent consonant bucket
    The words they inverted
    Were often perverted
    Not unpleasant per se, just... oh fcuk it.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2011 • 2448 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __, in reply to JacksonP,

    Aww. ;-)

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3887 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to JacksonP,

    Bravo, sir.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4650 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __,

    To briefly swerve back on topic, I’ve just been through City Mall and the Central Bus Station for the first time. Standing in the Mall seeing how miraculously tidy and normal it looks, it was all I could do not to burst into tears. I even loved Ballantynes’ Christmas Shop, which normally I loathe with a passion. Ballantynes’ cosmetics hall looks, if such a thing were possible, even slicker than it was before. I stood there amongst the impeccably gleaming marble and glass while the perfectly-presented shop assistant rang up my purchase and told me about climbing out over rubble cut and bruised, and about how staff had come in after the quake and rescued things like the cosmetics customer loyalty cards, for heavens sake.

    The bus station is also deeply awesome. And the all the restored bus services.

    And I looked through the fence at the red zone (there was a man putting plastic windows in the fence while I was there). There’s an abrupt transition between the shiny and normal and the deserted rubble-strewn wasteland. But I’m proud that we’ve pushed back the wasteland a little bit.

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3887 posts Report Reply

  • JacksonP, in reply to Lilith __,

    and about how staff had come in after the quake and rescued things like the cosmetics customer loyalty cards, for heavens sake.

    That's... heartbreaking? The thought of customers coming to that counter and the staff pulling out their loyalty card is quite incredible in the circumstances. I imagine they'll need a box of tissues. It's just so... Yeah, that.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2011 • 2448 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to JacksonP,

    +1

    and nice rhymes, sir

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19686 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to JacksonP,

    That’s… heartbreaking?

    Dunno about heartbreaking, but short of up-against-the-wall Ballantynes, send-‘em-out-to-build-tractors, the apparently frivolous normalities do count for something in terms of people’s emotional needs.

    I remember a story from Jakarta in the wake of the 1998 anti-Suharto riots, where a group of immaculately uniformed and made up young women waited in vain to clock in, in front of the melted plastic sign of the trashed mall where they’d worked.

    While I realise that it’s out there in the realms of hyperbole in terms of Christchurch’s situation, I’m reminded of an incident from an account of the liberation of the Nazi death camps, where instead of relief food parcels a huge consignment of lipstick was delivered to the emaciated survivors. Instead of rejecting it women eagerly seized upon it, and could be seen studying their transformed reflections in water troughs and puddles. That for me gives some clue to our need for the almost spiritual nourishment provided by ’normal’.

    In the meantime, it’d be great to have the local library back.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __, in reply to Joe Wylie,

    the apparently frivolous normalities do count for something in terms of people’s emotional needs.

    I think it’s more than that, though; it’s also the fighting spirit that says, “The hell with earthquakes, we need our customers’ loyalty cards!!”

    Yes, there are other things we no doubt need more. But I admire the gesture. :-)

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3887 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Lilith __,

    “The hell with earthquakes, we need our customers’ loyalty cards!!”

    Yeah. No idea whether she has a loyalty card, but here's a Ballantynes client getting the treatment on the big opening day.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Does anyone know if there are plans to show how Chch used to be in public spaces? Just watching that video, it will look so incredibly different five years from now - are they planning to put up signs outside the new buildings showing what they have replaced? Old photos of buildings and maybe a small record of what used to be there and how the earthquake affected the building?

    The video felt liked it breezed past the CTV site. What are they planning to do there?

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart, in reply to Kyle Matthews,

    The video felt liked it breezed past the CTV site. What are they planning to do there?

    I imagine a lot of thought and planning is going into that, and it won't be a quick decision*. I didn't feel like the video breezed past it; I thought it lingered as long as it needed to. I mean, what do you say? The PGC building site *did* get breezed past, I'm not sure the cameraman even managed to film it.

    *Translation: a lot of thought and planning better bloody be going into that.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Tantrix, that reminds me of the old Chinese Tangram - hours of fun and pattern recognition...

    Ian, along with chess-set & Scrabble equipment, I always carry a tangram- so simple, so tangential, so pivotal, and so so good-

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

  • Islander, in reply to Islander,

    Ur, for mindplay, reguardless of circumstances

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

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