Sunday, June 28, 2015

Good morning, good morning, good morning ah* (The Beatles)

I've always maintained that three things define my interests: Star Wars, The Beatles and Arsenal F.C.

It's high time that holy three was formally expanded.

Seinfeld - the greatest T.V. show of all time, has been a constant since the first time I saw it. It hooked me immediately (for the record, 1992, - it was Season 4, episode 1 - The Trip - when Jerry and George try to find Kramer in Hollywood).

Of the four - The Beatles is the earliest obsession (Ed Sullivan Show as a pre teen in the sixties), followed by the Arsenal (1971 and Charlie George), and Star Wars (1977 at a cinema in downtown Auckland).

That covers many of my interests - T.V., film, sport and music. I'm a simple guy.

My children know these things well. Samantha sent me a fantastic yellow submarine cup and saucer set for father's day (as she lives in SF I get two pressies per year - wahoo) and Jade gave me that Easter egg a while back. We opened it and scoffed it down on the weekend.

Jade also sent me this wonderful link to the Seinfeld set.

Which brings me to cereal. Jerry loves cereal. I have always loved cereal.

Growing up it started with basics cos we didn't have much to choose from: Weetbix and porridge was about it until Mr Kellogg discovered there was a market other than America for his corn flakes.

Trips to Sydney as a youngster were eye openers. They had things like Fruit Loops and Skippy Corn fakes and Frosties. Amazing!

These days I cobble together some gluten free cereals into a delish breakfast or dinner: 

  • Raspberry and Maple Nut Nograin-ola
  • Vogel's Cafe Style Light Berry
  • Gluten Free Granola from Adam and Eva.

Mix that lot together and it's a heavenly cocktail.

Mmm - can't wait until breakfast tomorrow now!

Love and peace - Wozza

* A bonus for you - one of the Kellogg's adverts that helped inspire John Lennon's Good Morning Good Morning on Sgt Peppers:

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Gonna steal time from the faulty plan (Phish)

I like this idea of stealing time.

It's all about taking some time to actually appreciate something. In this case it's appreciating the surroundings.

Whanau member/cousin Christine has three children. One of them, Fran, is staying with us at present. She flew out from England last week to undertake a project at Hastings Hospital, as part of her process towards becoming a doctor.

I took her for a tiki tour around Taupo last weekend. The usual haunts: Huka Falls, The Craters Of The Moon thermal park, and The Lion Walk. The only things we missed were mini golf and an ice cream from Rainbow Point.

Fran is a good sight seer. She takes things in, doesn't look at things from a camera lens all the time, and didn't necessarily want to be documented as part of a photograph. She's still not a fan of photographs.

I managed to persuade her to pose a teensy weesy bit at each of the three locations though. Hence her being on the periphery of these photos.

Mr and Mrs Adam and Ashleigh Purdy have also been visitors to Red Phoenix Farm this week. Keen observers themselves - they're off to live in Australia for a while (Melbourne to be specific). 

Happy trails and safe travels to them.

Generation Y Purdys: Fanfa, Ashleigh, Adam
Love and peace - Wozza

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Don't wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great (Orson Swett Marden)

I have been very lucky in my life. I have come across some exceptional people.

What does it take to be exceptional? This list is handily supplied by Life Magazine. They highlight 10 qualities exceptional people have.

I read through the article and considered it an aspirational list. It's the kind of list that is tough to self-reflect on. It's more what others see in you I guess.

Here's the list first:

1 Grace (those with a dignified elegance, who are noble and ethical)
2 Kindness
3 Composure (self-control)
4 Fearless (those willing to dare greatly in life)
5 Poised (they possess a quiet confidence)
6 Deliberate (clear and persistent in who they are, clear of negativity)
7 Intelligent
8 Unassuming (prefer the background)
9 Truthful (simple, upfront, gentle, but direct in the “being” of who they are)
10 Loving

This final bit from the Life people is a nice summary:
To be truly successful in life it is the understated qualities of success which are sustaining. To possess any one of them will increase the experience of a person’s success exponentially. The truly exceptional know that who they are internally is the most powerful marker of their influence on the world.
I REALLY like how they've expressed that!

Love and peace - Wozza

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Biker like an icon (Paul McCartney)

A colleague, I'll call him Greg, alerted me to this interesting site - word camera

It's pretty cool!! You simply upload a photo and the site creates a weirdly poetic narrative around the image. 

I tried it, using this photo I took of my younger brother riding my bike when we were kids. The narrative down below came from word camera. I've edited it a bit and changed the line length. 


In fact, a driver and a biker: 
the biker evokes outlawing.  
In other words, the driver 
has to pass their drive test. 
Also, it evokes person.

a transportation, 
which remains a movement,
it is known to some as transport. 
Immediately, it appertains 
to transactions 
having the objective 
of supplying commodities.

Furthermore, people and a vehicle: 
'people' appertains to a society, 
and the vehicle has a wheel. 

In the meantime, the vehicle is also known
as a self-powered vehicle. 
Certainly, it is an album. 

Now, it is a means or instrumentality 
for storing or communicating information.   
As an illustration, it may close their eye. 
Soon, it yearns for fresh air.

Love and peace - Wozza

Friday, June 12, 2015

You can count on me (Bruno Mars)

Loads going on in Wozza's world lately. 

Stuff I don't write about on Wozza's Place usually.

I used to - right at the start of writing this blog I reported on all the weird and wacky stuff that consumes all of our lives from time to time. So in that mode, this last week was about:

  • Buying a new mattress for SWMBO and me
  • Selling Red Phoenix Farm (we hope to go unconditional next week)
  • Buying a new place for the horses, dogs, cat, sheep, birds and us (we hope to go unconditional next week)
  • Marking student work so that the reports I need to write today are as up to date as poss.
  • Presenting stuff to the staff about Twitter, Blogging, and my Year 12 students
  • Buying the new Ringo Starr album (I'm a completist remember)
  • Seeing Jade, here for a visit after her holiday in the Pacific with William
  • Continuing to not eat junk
  • Dealing with lawyers, real estate agents and their PAs (see buying and selling a house bullets)
  • Being a coffee hag for my friends (servant leadership y'all)
  • Reading as much of Tune In as I could (It's AWESOME)
  • Reading as much of Walrus Gumboot, Vox headlines, The Guardian, as poss
  • Watching as many stock piled episodes of Silicon Valley, Location Location Location, Grand Designs, FIFA Under 20 World Cup and Women's World Cup as I could

There's more but you get the gist.

We all live lives like this, don't we. 

I looked up from my keyboard  a second ago and looked outside.

The sun is just up. Long shadows. Bit windy. But beautiful.

You've been updated!

Love and peace out - Wozza

Monday, June 8, 2015

I say hello, hello hello (The Beatles)

So The Virgin Way is been and gone. He's an ideas man is Richard Branson!

No wonder he likes this Steve Jobs quote:
Creativity comes from spontaneous meetings, from random discussions. You run into someone, you ask what they're doing, you say "Wow" and soon you're cooking up all sorts of ideas.
So now I'm onto Mark Lewisohn's first volume of All Those Years - his massive Beatle history, called Tune In (840 pages of text plus notes and index equals a 946 wonder filled document for the ages).

At some point I should explain my obsession with all things Fab but for now I'm tuning in to Mr Lewisohn. I bought this some time ago - it's one of those books I dread starting coz I know I'll become consumed by it and not want it to end. 

The guy is a Beatles expert par excellence. I've read a lot of Beatle books in my time but in one footnote on page 19 he gives me three wonderful, hitherto unknown, facts:
In 1916 Paul McCartney's family bought a piano from Nems music store - not yet owned by the Epstein family. Paul bought the piano back in 1981 (it had previously been sold). Paul's dad self taught himself the piano despite being deaf in one ear (as a child he fell off a wall behind his house at 3 Solva Street, Liverpool).
Stunning! Thanks Mark!

Love and peace - Wozza

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Old man look at my life, I'm a lot like you were (Neil Young)

To my surprise I've turned into a bit of a Richard Branson fan.

Richard's blog often turns up some unexpected treats and his 2014 book The Virgin Way is my latest purchase from that sale table outside Poppies bookstore in Havelock North.

It's come as a bit of a shock after the exuberant prose of Haruki Murikami.

Richard may be a genius entrepreneur and a source of motivation to millions but his writing style is a throwback to an earlier age. I mean who calls their book 'The Virgin Way'

Seven years older than me means I have heard many of the same expressions he uses from my own parents. Richard relates them in a plain style (fob people off; astute advice, not to be outdone...I opened the book at random three times and those were the first words I found).

I don't mean that as a criticism. It's kinda refreshing. Lately, I've been reading a lot of material from and which has a very (post) modern style. Richard doesn't kowtow to trends. Nor does he like mission statements - a man after my own heart!

Subtitled 'How to Listen, Learn, Laugh and Lead', the book delivers what it says on the tin. 

Here's a bit to chew on until we meet again:
I remember asking my father about the RAF motto of 'Per Ardua ad Astra'. When dad told me that it meant, 'Through Adversity to the Stars', my impressionable young brain seized on to it as the most inspirational thing I'd ever heard. There was something incredibly compelling about the notion of battling one's way to the stars no matter how difficult the challenge.
Love and peace - Wozza