Posts by TracyMac

  • Speaker: Unknown Places: Queens of K…,

    Great piece. Paints a picture, captures her voice, doesn't patronise.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 680 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Waitangi: Just enjoy the day, in reply to Alan Perrott,

    The experience of the the Scottish crofters was reputedly why Fraser had a lot of sympathy for Maori land claims - at least in comparison to most other Pakeha politicians around that time.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 680 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Friday Music: Bar None, and…, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Awww ... but the groove.

    That IS awesome. Imma check out Soundcloud and see if someone's remixed it without the vocal... or a less cringey one.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 680 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Friday Music: Bar None, and…,

    Nothing like some good disco/funk. And I've been grateful to see some more recent documentaries on electronica finally acknowledging its influence on the genre.

    Yup, the musique concretists and Kraftwerks et al came up with some cool sounds and technologies (and I suppose one or two prog exponents), but being able to dance to these sounds made the difference.

    I distinctly remember the first time I heard I Feel Love - indeed, the best dance track ever. Moroder did some incredibly banal stuff (I can't forgive him for Take My Breath Away), but IFL is just the acme of dance. Flashdance, Call Me and Cat People were pretty good later on, as was lots of his late-70s stuff. Unfortunately, I find Donna Summer's 14 minute orgasm in Love to Love You Baby an embarrassment for all concerned (but I liked Berlin's Sex, which was obviously influenced-by, go figure).

    Anyway, time to crank up Bandcamp and check out that collection.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 680 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Trump 2018, in reply to Paul Campbell,

    He could be suing Bannon for good-old-fashioned defamation. Frankly, I can't see how he can avoid suing in these circumstances, either. Allowing the assertions to stand uncontested would also seem like an admission of guilt.

    At least in the US, unlike the UK, truth is s defence.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 680 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Trump 2018,

    The only problem with all of this is that Trump has been fairly ineffective so far, other than passing that disgusting tax bill, and signing executive orders for things like slicing up national parks and denying climate change at a rate 80% greater than Obama's.

    If he gets the boot and Pence becomes President, there will be a more dangerous and intelligent man holding the reins of power. Although I suppose he's less likely to kick off a nuclear war with Korea due to a dick-measuring contest.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 680 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the…, in reply to Ian Pattison,

    I'd be interested in your citation re your coining being more grammatically "correct".

    Sure, we don't cap-up normal nouns in English, but since this one is based on a proper noun (belonging to a natural, live, person), it seems stylistically inelegant not to leave the cap in.

    In fact, I find many style guides and grammarians say just that, such as this discussion on uncapped eponyms:

    Some eponymous words are still capitalized like a proper noun, so those not capitalized are most clearly eponyms. The important, defining property is that the word does not refer exclusively to the person or place named by the proper noun, as does Marxism or Christian, but is used to refer to a general category, as do quisling, boycott and fuchsias ...

    In our example, we're definitely referring exclusively to one person.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 680 posts Report Reply

  • Feed: Melting pot: A cuisine of immigrants,

    Oh, and the lack of restaurants doing Pacific-style cuisine continues to be a mystery. Even Australians have come up with a concept of "Australian cuisine", with some emphasis on bush ingredients and the like.

    There are plenty of bush ingredients in NZ, and surely plenty of Maori/Pasifika techniques that could be brought into play to create something fresh but not gimmicky. What about hangi-style meats that get prepared with bush herbs, or seared and finished off with bush spices, served up in some little (genuine) kono?

    My former "dad in law" invented a super speed hangi device out of a 40 gallon drum cut in half, with the top half turned into a basket-holder with a bit of welding and some wire milk trays, the bottom part stacked with volcanic rocks, and a couple of oxy-acetylene torches poked into holes near the bottom to get the rocks up to temperature. Baskets were loaded up in the usual way, topped off with wet cloths and sacks, then the lid (with a few steam vents burned in) fitted back on tightly, and the whole thing done in half the time, tasting exactly the same.

    Analyse (or source from Rotorua) the salts that make up the crystal-clear ngawha that's best for cooking sweetcorn. Steam and serve the kernels combined with fresh karengo and fancy cultured butter. Mutton bird slivers with pikopiko, all fushiony with a spiced coconut sauce and diced steamed taro. Fancy Samoan style chow mein. Something spicy with tinned corn beef and rice. All the fish, and a really good oka. A new spin in pineapple pie.

    With all the variations on fancy burger and fancy fried chicken around the place, you'd think that someone could come up with interesting regional food at a mid-range price - we can't all eat at Peter Gordon (although I've done it once in London). Although some kind of overtly Pacifika riff on fried chicken would be pretty cool. Coconut instead of buttermilk for marinating? Crushed sugarcane and pineapple glazes?

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 680 posts Report Reply

  • Feed: Melting pot: A cuisine of immigrants,

    Great topic, and I'll be buying the book when I am back in NZ over the holidays.

    In Auckland, there was (and is) always Wah Lee to visit for its fantastic range of mysterious ingredients stuffed from floor to ceiling, from the baskets on the floor to the things hanging from the walls. While the family who own the place have probably been in NZ almost as long as my ancestors, there was that sense of stepping literally into another country and culture when you walked into its doors.

    A formative experience I had with Chinese cuisine in the early 80s was at a restaurant in Panmure, of all places. Beef in black bean sauce - tender thin slices, the light but super savoury sauce (nothing like the jarred goop you get in supermarkets), the REAL thing. I still haven't had a better version of that dish, and it began my love affair with fermented soy and what we now know as umami - 13 is a good age to get kids expanding their palates, I think.

    Earlier, my mother worked at an Italian restaurant in Milford, called Alberto's. He was a lovely man, and treated my mother, with four kids and a fuckwit adulterous husband, with respect and consideration. Not the routine treatment of a working class woman in the 70s. My mother did have to be educated on who did NOT get the bill presented to them one night, when a set of very large Italian men in wide-lapelled broad-pinstriped dark suit and tie ate and talked for hours and nearly drank the place out of wine. Apparently said gentlemen continued to be regular patrons and no-one went missing, so all ended well.

    The drawback was we NEVER got to eat the very trendy Pizza Hut when it hit Auckland's North Shore - even years after mum stopped working at Alberto's, she wouldn't let us eat "that crap". Then there was the time she loaded all of us kids on the bus from Birkenhead to go buy real fresh spinach lasagne sheets from the one deli in Takapuna that stocked them. A multi-hour mission, and pretty damn radical for Irish-descent pakehas in the late 70s. I still highly rate mum's lasagne recipe. And she's right - if you can cook a "white sauce" (now I know the fancy name for it is a bechamel), you can cook pretty much anything.

    And a couple more oddies - the Japanese (definitely not Korean-masquerading-as-) restaurant in Wellesley (?) St in the mid-late 80s that did shabu-shabu and sukiyaki at the tables, which also featured hot plates you could cook your own okonomiyaki on for the princely sum of $10. It was fantastic, and ahead of its time (in NZ). And the Japanese lunch bar that did simple school-style four-ingredient takeaway meals - cabbage salad, rice, something stewed or fried for the day, a bit of omelette or fruit. And let us not forget Daikoku Ramen, serving ramen and gyoza to Japanese sailors and surprised passers-by near the wharves, also since the 80s and still trucking mightily along today.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 680 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Harkanwal Singh: What really…, in reply to James Ting-Edwards,

    That's exactly the way a responsible journalist should have reported on the broader issue.

    Also, if Labour wanted to tackle rentierism, doing so without looking at non-immigrant citizens would be a pointless waste of time.

    That said, I'm all for limits on non-resident land purchases. And for not conferring citizenship on rich, far-right-wing plutocrats setting up "isolated" boltholes in our country on payment of some undisclosed sums to some undisclosed coffers. Such plutocrats who can't even be bothered receiving such citizenship in said country, and demanding that a forelock-tugging High Commissioner confer it in said technocrat's private and palatial mansion.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 680 posts Report Reply

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