Health tip

Rosemary, I learned today,  is an excellent memory aid. Apparently if you sniff it every day, or something,  your memory improves by as much as mumble percent. 

I am impressed by this. I think a few dots need can be joined. Because as is fairly well known, the best thing to stick rosemary in is a leg of lamb. 
Accompanied, of course, by garlic – the health giving properties of which are also reasonably well established (helps blood pressure, also the immune system, scares vampires off, etc etc).
Bung in some red wine – which a lot of folk with impressive sounding sciencey letters after their names have told us is also pretty damn good for the ol’ bod.
I think we’ve established now, without doubt, that roast lamb is a health food. 

Accidents will happen…

Spent a great deal of the week writing about ACC.  So on a lighter if slightly solipsic note, here’s my own experiences with the corporation.

  1. Shoved a chisel into my fist in woodwork, 1976.  Missed a major vein by about a millimetre.
  2. By some miracle missed copping compo for car accident injuries in my late teens/early 20s.  I don’t want to labour this point, but one of my nicknames at the time was Crash. Did get concussed in one crash but I didn’t bother the doc:  just went home and slept.
  3. As a postie in Auckland, mid 1980s.  Delivering mail in Brighton Rd, Parnell. One place had a large timber wall with a rosebush growing over the top next to the mailbox.  It was a gusty day.  A branch got blown into my face:  a thorn went up my left nostril.  Stung like hell, real eye-waterer.  Mentioned it next day when I knocked it picking up mail from the sorter and she said ‘What are you doing here?’  I asked her what she meant:  she said ‘That’s a week’s compo, easily. Take it.’  I didn’t. 
  4. Badly sprained ankle playing touch.  Went back to work  – a gardening job – too early.  Tore muscle in the other calf because I was favouring my injured foot. Off work for a couple of weeks.
  5. Numerous subsequent injuries in both lower legs. 
  6. Not my experience, but someone I know – a farmer – got kicked in the leg by a cow.  Went to the doc who did his stuff.  He’s talking with ACC a few days later and is told ‘we don’t cover knees.  Only legs.’  His other half, who is (a) a nurse and (b) in possession of a stroppy streak especially with minor bureaucrats, phones up the ACC person and points out the knee is in the leg, its it the bit in the middle that bends.

And then there was the insect.   Woke up one night about seven years ago with what felt like a moth on the edge of my ear.  Flicked it the wrong way. It went in.  Tried to shake it out but no luck. 

Got tweezers, torch.  Woke Better Half.  She blurrily comes awake, the first thing she sees is me , proffering the tweezers in one hand and the torch in the other while occasionally flicking my head to one side and going ‘Arrgh.’ 
She wonders, perhaps not for the first time, if she’s married a lunatic.  I tell her the situation:  she peers in but can’t see anything.    I drove down the road to A & E (it is about 2.30am).  By this time I’m starting to get a bit worried:  the insect has hit my eardrum and is trying to get through it and I can tell you this is quite painful.  
It also occurs to me at this point that we’ve just had a load of firewood delivered and if the insect is a borer beetle it’s going to have the power in its jaws to go through the eardrum – and to keep going beyond. I don’t fancy the idea of a borer beetle chewing through my brain.  That stuff is mine, dammit. 
With these thoughts in mind I walk into A & E, twitching my head onto one side spasmodically, and occasionally banging it with my fist.  The eyes of the receptionist widen and I can see she’s thinking ‘what’s this guy taken?’  
I explain:  the first thing she does is hand me an ACC form.  
Long story short:  they can’t get it out but they pour something into my ear to kill it.   Next day I come back to Ear Nose and Throat.  A lady doctor eases it out with a delicate suction thing and as it emerges starts screaming ‘Oh my god, it’s horrible, I can’t look at it!’ 
Which is not something you ever want to hear your doctor say.  
She went into mild hysterics, then calmed herself and apologised.  I said I was quite happy for the doctor to freak out because usually it was me. 
She explained she just never could stand cockroaches.
Yep, that’s what it was.  We don’t have them around the house, btw – it must have come in on the firewood. 

Bit of a round up…

Firstly, going a bit retro, musically.
Been thrashing some ‘Stones…..the only place I can find a decent version of ‘Monkey Man’ on the web is here: ignore the crappy preliminary and…post-liminary??whatever…ignore the silly pictures, just listen to the track especially when it hits a peak and just soars at 3.00. Just listen to the interplay of Richards’ and Watts’ guitar and drums ….bloody transcendent.

Better still, just stick the entire album on.

And if you haven’t got a copy of ‘Let It Bleed’ go out and get one now.

Make it your Christmas present to yourself. Because you’re worth it.

NOWW.. AROUND THE BLOGS… Cactus Kate has some advice for press gallery types looking at jumping to the dark side…its a little late now, for some. As is usual with anything monetary she is bang on.. .comes to similar conclusions I came to some time ago.

Meanwhile, voters at Public Address have voted ‘Credit Crunch’ as word/term of the year.

Amen to that…my fear was it would be ‘infrastructure’ which i”m getting fed up with having to write. Infrastructure has become the bloody cure for the recession, the credit crunch and bloody everything, not just here abut around the world.

I expect to see Jude Dobson touting it on that health spot thing she does on the teev. I bet it cures thrush.

The lads at NZBC are recruiting after one of them went ducked outside after announcing he might be gone for some time.

Jon Johansson has some Christmas goodwill here…

And I’m off for the year. Still doing a bit of work but also enjoying the sun.

Took the wee miss to Lyall Bay this morning…she loved it.

After tomorrow: Family Christmas things, a few odd jobs around the house, then off to the hills in mid-Jan.

Not always a good fit

Shopping for clothes is right up there with prostate examinations on most bloke’s personal hate list.

Reading that back, perhaps should have used a term other than ‘right up there’ and ‘prostate examination’ in the same sentence, but I think the damage has now been done.

Anyway, popped into Farmers yesterday arvo. Need some new grunds. It’s been a while.

Well. The grund section looked something like the flags of all nations at the Olympics, although worse: the Olympics if all the competitors were from the cast of Priscilla Queen of the Desert.

Can’t help but wonder what the hell happened to blokes grunds. This one sort of sneaked up on us.

I know that in New Zealand we often don’t get such a good deal with clothing, especially now so much is imported. I learned just how bad we are served a few years ago, when I went and got some shoes made tailored for my feet.

I learned a few things. One was that, as I had always suspected, I’ve got feet that are different sizes. Apparently most people have this, but the discrepancy on my feet is bigger than usual – a size and a half difference.

The other thing I learned is that overseas, in the US anyway, you can get shoes for wide feet and narrow feet, but NZ doesn’t have that: we’re just too small a market.

So some years back the shoe people just made a decision, all NZ shoes would be for wide feet. Which means that if, like me, you’ve got narrow feet, you are never going to get shoes that are very comfortable.

I suspect something similar has happened with men’s grunds. My theory is that overseas you can get them for blokes who ‘dress’ to the right or the left, but in NZ we’ve just been lumbered with grunds designed for guys who only ‘dress’ to one side. And it’s not my side.

This would explain why I’ve never had a comfortable pair.

Weekend jobs…

Spent the best part of the day shifting firewood. It’s a bit of a job: a truckload of gum gets dumped on the car pad and I spend the day shifting it down our path – (a classic Wellington path, zigzagging down the hill with six switchbacks; then down some steps). Just me and my little wheelbarrow. It’s a good substitute for a workout at the gym.

Arguably, it’s a bit less boring. You can play those amateur quantity surveying games in your head “now lets, see, that looks like about another 30-35 barrow loads, its taking me five minutes a barrow load when I time myself, so I should be finished by…”

Then of course you have to factor in how long each barrow load takes when you’re not timing yourself.

Or you do the war gaming …”Achtung! Ve vill invade this patch here where zey are veak, sweep up that side and take out that outcrop of bark over there, unt on to that pile there vich ist our ultimate objevtive. Ha harr! For you ze varr ist over!”*

Or, you can just think of silly things to write on your blog.

End of the day, a couple of Kingfisher Lagers washed down home made Rogan Josh and chased with a glass of Lagavulin. Bliss.

This morning: doing the accounts.

Not bliss.

*Sorry. We signed up to the History Channel recently. They owe Mr A Hitler big time. Without him they’d be reduced to computer-generated re-enactments of the Battle of Agincourt.