Mother’s dilemma: Memorial has an uncertain future

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It was strange walking into town today. There were all these people doing their shopping. I’ve got one of my Christmas journeys out of the way and these people are involved with last days preparations. It felt disconcerting.

There are two lifts in the parking building of which the YFitness gym is part. They stop at alternative floors as the stair well goes up flight by flight. This is confusing for people unfamiliar with the building as they cannot enter on the Octagon level from the centre of town to take the lift to the Moray Place level, the circle road that surrounds the Octagon. They have to take at least one flight of stairs.

I forgot to take my shaving gel with me to Invercargill which meant before church on Sunday I had to dry shave, not pleasant.

I showed the computers in Invercargill to Joe. He did not recommend them. He suggested that Tim would be better off getting a Dell from the Werehouse; or an HP from Griffler Enterprises.

One of the schools that has closed in Invercargill is the one where a tree was planted as a memorial to my twin brother who worked there as a teacher’s aide before he died of cancer. I have been given a copy of the newspaper article from the Southland Times.

One of the people with whom I travelled back to Dunedin was my mother’s 13 year old neighbour. He proved to be an enthusiastic talker and very friendly company.

The pre-Christmas Christmas

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I’m back again, sitting in front of a computer that is fast enough to up and download.

I travelled down to Invercargill by Catch-a-Bus and saw one friend travelling on the bus, someone who only occasionally see. He was going down to Invercargill for the holidays to care for his hospitalised father. The last time he travelled by van was a trip to a conference in the North Island. On the trip there the vanload of people came coined the title of a new and irregular periodical the Bulletin of the Signal Hill Institute of Technology. I would love to see a copy of it. Apparently it has a contributors’ distribution only.

I stayed with Dave in Invercargill and we visited his parents for tea.

On arrival my mother wanted me to take part in Sunday’s church service by squeezing her donkey. Her children’s talk on a nativity theme involved a children’s book, toy animals providing the noises. I don’t like being volunteered by my mother to take part in her activities. I got arround it by paying a visit to my brother just before the church service. I gave him a gift of a pair of novelty golf balls, their oval shape means that they can do trick shots. We drove up town to look at second-hand computers on sale for $500. That meant that I was too late to participate in my mother’s children’s talk.

Lunch was with Joe’s family. Three Aunties were present (including my mother), and his sisters attended with available families. Gifts were shared. I got treats of food, a new duvet cover, a new towel (warning: colours may bleed, so don’t wash with anything else), a deck of cards(!) and a calendar. The calendar is very nice, images of new New Zealand art. I already have a calendar in my room, the Maramataka one, so I have put the 2005 calendar in the hallway opposit the telephone.

Tea was a traditional visit to one of the Aunties. Aunties, in my cosmology, count as a force of nature, irresistable and continuant. There was no Queen’s Message, instead we watched a video of The Calendar Girls. I had not seen it before and it proved an entertaining british film which the gathered hapu enjoyed. Apart from that it felt no different to a celebration that we would normally have after summer solstice, the festival of light.

I returned to Dunedin by the same service, leaving first thing in the morning. Joe decided to remain in Invercargill until the latter part of the day and return on the Knight-Rider. After a pleasant weekend I would feel no regrets if the opportunity was available for me to live and work in Invercargill.

The cats appear to be physically and psychologically undisturbed by my absense, despite being in the care of a flatmate who anticipated the weekend with evil overlord’s laughter: Mwahahahaha!

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Holidays have begun.

I’ve been to my last day at the archives for the year; and to my last session of GURPS. We didn’t go through with our crazy fool plan. Instead we got Garset apprenticed to a knight, Lord Saren. Then a riot broke out in the town we were in and we had an exciting fight scene broke out. We had the Axe-Man along to heckle – I think he’s feeling socially deprived at the moment – and he proved helpful when it came to refering the GURPS Character book.

I stopped at our local fish’n’chip shop on the way home from town and it had closed for the holidays. Fortunately Keith rang from town when I got home and he could get tea from a chippie closer to town.

Okay, I should be leaving on the Catch-a-Bus to Invercargill in half an hour. I’ll stay the weekend with Dave and see my family for a pre-Christmas Christmas Party. This could be my penultimate clog entry for the year depending when I get access to a terminal from now on.

This rain at this time of year is just wrong.

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One of the consequences of the flood in the stack was that we uncovered boxes of the Knox College Register, a hard-covered volume that lists the residents of the college between 1909-1972. When I saw them I was tempted to leave them sitting in the water. They were, in my opinion, not worth saving. Still they were moved and the books were undamaged.

I decided that it was a good excuse to remove them from the archives and dispose of them in the residential wing of the college. I piled seven boxes on a trolley and took them to the foyer of the college office wing. Minutes after I returned to archives the archivist received an irate phone call from a staff member in the residential college. Moving the books across the quad without consulting a staff member proved to be pre-emptive. It was imperially demanded of us that I remove them again. There was no space for them in the college and the thirty year old boxes they were stored in looked untidy in the foyer.

I was rather coldly thanked, that it was nice of me to take the boxes away. I did not like this. What really rankles is this little toad has dreams of becoming the next archivist after Yew Tree Woman retires in a few years’ time. I am less than sympathetic to that idea.

The books have been stored in the archway room off the Hewitson Library. I actually enjoyed lugging each box up the stairs, while I’m physically fit enough to do it without being burdened. We cleaned the stack after the flood today as my last day activity before the holidays. Two more boxes were discovered! My suggestion is that when the furnaces start at the beginning of the college year the boxes and their contents be used as fuel. There will be a new edition prepared for the centenary of the college in 2009.

IB Wiki

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IJzeren Jan has sent me a recent word to tell me that there is a serious fallout between two people in the Conculture list. Even though I am not active on that list he has kept me in the loop over this issue because it involves lla Sociedad di’ll Bethisad.

Non-Non‘s three year old step-son is starting kindergarten next year for two afternoons a week. He’s a big boy now. His father works at the archives. He remained serious when I told him the good news. There were other people in the room at the time, and Non-Non’s family is family in the alternative sense.

I sat through a twenty minute rant about what Peter Jackson did wrong on the Return of the King. After it was finished I found that I had to unclench my teeth.

I went into the museum gift shop and bought a novelty Christmas present for my brother in Invercargill. I haven’t found anything for my t’other brother in Wellington. I’m going to visit him after I’ve been to Invercargill at the weekend.

One last visit to Bag End for the year. I picked up the latest issues of Doctor Spectrum and Rising Stars. Michael was deep in conversation with a customer re: Marvel versus DC characters. Comic book fans can be very sad that way. I didn’t get the chance to wish Michael season’s greetings. The first thing to do next year when I visit Bag End is ask him to reserve a copy of volume two of The Walking Dead for me.

While I was there I took a punt and put my name down for The Atheist. The series is about a sceptical investigator in a comic book universe who won’t believe in paranormal phenomena until he meets it. The creative team describe it as like Doctor Who only serious. Do they realise what they have let themselves in for!?

People are starting to finish at the gym for the year. I go in for my last day on Friday.

The backside you kick today may be the backside you kiss tomorrow

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Lunchtime today the archives closed for two hours as staff and volunteers trooped down to Filadelfios, the local pizza restaurant. After a meal of pizza, wedges and salad I was feeling that making tea wasn’t going to be high on my agenda for tonight’s activities. In the early evening I went out with Felicity and Robert to Sampan a cheap asian restaurant in town. I decided on something light, a small bowl of noodle soup. Felicity bought me regular sized bowl. Now I’m feeling full again. That clinches it.

While I was waiting on Felicity I rang to enquire about a house to let in North East Valley. $75 dollars a week per room, 3 double sized bedrooms, working burner in the kitchen, very tempting. It’s not available until the start of February so it might be worth looking into in January when we have a full quota in our flat again.

The Loot

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The archivist has returned from a weeklong visit to Auckland. She is pleased with herself. There are people on the Presbyteries up there who are friendly towards the archives. If their records are going to be deposited in Dunedin they want the archives kept in good health.

Joe has left for Invercargill. I will join him down there for a pre-Christmas Christmas with our family. Then I will return to ‘n Edwin to fly to visit my brother in Wellington.

One goes, one arrives. Equivalance!

Time for Comics update:

Amazing Spiderman: end of the Sins Past arc. Nobody walks away intact. Two new characters are added to the Spiderman Mythos. While their origin is controversial, their characters are established – until somebody rewrites it.
Supreme Power: dark story on adult issues; nothing more to add to that.
Amazing Fantasy: next year this title changes to Araña, so if Bag End Comics fails to pull this one for me I won’t miss it.
Alpha Flight: I missed an issue of this, which makes the current story _slightly_ confusing. I think I saw somewhere that issue #12 will conclude this run.

The Walking Dead: Days Gone Bye
This one deserves a paragraph.

One of the tv series that I remember from my youth was Survivor. Not the crappy reality show, it was a British series. It played a little later on tv. I was allowed to stay up for it. The premise was that an artificial disease had been carried around the world causing a pandemic that killed millions of people. The series did not deal with the deaths. Instead it focused on the handfuls of people who through isolation or immunity survived the holocaust. They had to live together and rebuild a society, starting with who plants next year’s food, and who has enough guns to ensure this group can harvest it. I think there were only a few episodes of this series that I missed.

The Walking Dead is essentially Survivor with zombies instead of microbes.

A cop is wounded in a shootout. 28 days later he wakes up in an abandoned hospital. An outbreak of zombies means that the living are mostly eaten. American society has collapsed. The survivors are those who fled before hand. Officer Rick Grimes, the protagonist, must keep his family and travelling companions alive. No punches are pulled (emotionally at least), and the zombies are prepared to let everything hang out, including body parts. Black and white and graphic.

Since I got my copy first I will take it with me to show Dave. Apparently orders drop off Diamond Distributers after they get older than two months.

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