Thursday, November 16, 2017

I wanna be your dog (The Stooges)

I used to be a cat man. Never a dog man.

Then I met Jacky and it's been a story of loyal dogs ever since - Wynton, Bazil and Jerry (with two memorable miss-steps along the way - Tori and Dukie).

But cats? Another story entirely. We can't seem to get it right with cats.

Cats can be evil (Ben) or stoopid (Scraps). They can suddenly disappear on us (Waffles/Rocky) or get bowled by cars (Scraps). They can catch diseases (Kramer/Flower and Scooter) or they can hate dogs with an extraordinary passion (Seven). 

Lewis and, to a lesser extent, Persia were pretty cool for cats but we had to give them away to lives of luxury when we went to live in England.

Latest in the line of cats was (yes, past tense) Sensei/Tom. You remember him. He featured in the previous post.

All was going well until he attacked Jerry for no reason and peed on Jacky's curtains (I thought I was part owner until she yelled out - 'he's peed on my curtains' while we had dinner).

So it's back to the SPCA for Sensei/Tom. No more cats!

Jerry is mightily relieved!

Love and peace - Wozza

Sunday, November 12, 2017

I get high on music (Headband)

Introducing another new member to the menagerie. After a brilliant weekend away in Keri Keri (the kids shouted us two nights away for my birthday) we cruised past the SPCA in Whangarei to pick up a tabby SWMBO had found a week or so ago. 

Original name - Sensei. We're flirting with a new name - Tom, for obvious reasons.

Homeward we pootled, delivered Tom back to Roch-dene, and I picked up Jerry from 'Auntie' Mandy's place. She and Winston kindly dog sat for us - where Jerry and Winston formed an instant bond!

Tired, Jerry spent the rest of the afternoon freaking out Sensei/Tom, pining for Winston, and catching up on some zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz in ART.

SWMBO and I had a great restful weekend in Keri Keri - visiting the Stone Store and its surrounds, wandering around the town, fine dining at Cafe Jerusalem, eating bacon and pancakes for breakfast and shopping!

There's a pretty cool music shop (no vinyl though) in the main street so I whiled away an hour (or so) in there. Along with a few CDs, I picked up a Rory Gallagher DVD I hadn't seen before - Live in Cork!

While 'laxing in Keri Keri, I also finished book #44 (end of week 42) - The Abortionist's Daughter by Elisabeth Hyde: good detective whodunnit story.

Six books to go before reaching my goal of 50 books in 52 weeks.

So, now it's down to six books in ten weeks. Should be easy peesy.

Currently, I'm onto #45 (now week 43) - J.B. Ballard's High Rise which I picked up from Molly's Little Book Shop in Keri Keri.

I'm keen to reread the Gormenghast Trilogy as my last three - as the ten weeks takes in the Christmas holidays I feel that's doable.

Love and peace - Wozza

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Don't take my Kodachrome away (Paul Simon)

Friend of mine, let's call her Renoir set me a challenge recently.

Post a black and white photo each day for seven days on Facebook with no humans appearing in said photos.

Cool. So I set the Canon to monochome and wondered what to shoot.

Here's my first set from which to choose. More to come.

Interesting that my first subject was a variety of faces.

Love and peace and cheese - Wozza

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Nowhere man, the world is at your command (The Fabs)

Jerry Update:

Jerry has bounced back from his Parvo scare and is smelling the flowers (and, ah, digging them out) again. 

Sail update: I've moved onto the sails over the deck to the front entrance of Roch-dene.

Reading update: week 40 book 43 was Gregg Hurwitz' sequel to Orphan X - an excellent thriller in the Matthew Reilly style. 

Love and peace - Wozza

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Along the rivers of your mind I saw the ever changing plants and trees (The Rumour)

Zen garden number 3 is now pretty much completed.

This time we've gone for a zen stroke patio stroke dining stroke relaxing area - combining garden furniture, Buddha, potted plants, sail, paving, cap cod chairs and screens.

All sitting happily outside ART (Abbey Road Three) and bathing in the luxuriant soundssssssss.

View from ART

SWMBO water blasted and painted the screens we found by the potting shed, we put up the sail, moved garden furniture around and tried various combinations of plants.

Jerry wants to say he 'helped' too.

It all looks pretty cool but even better that that it works. I spent an hour today in Zen 3's shade while listening to a Brian Wilson album playing in ART, and reading Mojo. 


Love and peace - Wozza

Monday, October 23, 2017

I'm thinking about a-this whole world (The Beach Boys)

I am Brian Wilson. 

Well, actually, I am Warren Purdy but the 'I am Sparticus' joke I tried to weave in there didn't want to work.

I've just finished I Am Brian Wilson (start of week 39, book 42) and it's a really good title. I feel like I know him a little more than I did before.

That's a pretty cool thing to say about someone's autobiography.

The Beach Boys have long been an obsession - I own all their albums, even the pretty duff ones with Mike Love 'leading' the lineup like Still Cruisin' and Summer In Paradise. I'm not sure why I own those ones. I'm not a fan of Mike Love.

But I love Carl Wilson, Brian's music, and I love the idea of Dennis Wilson. Given there is a lot of stuff about Brian in the public arena, I have never really thought much about Brian Wilson the person. 

Until I Am Brian Wilson.

I have no idea how it was written but the whole thing sounds like Brian. And Brian is very candid about his voices, his relationships, and his music.

It's real, is what I'm trying to say. And real is rare.

Love and peace to you Brian - WNP

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

It's my birthday too, yeah (The Beatles)

'Tis my little brother's birthday (18th of Rocktober). He turned 58.

I'm pretty sure his knees don't look like that anymore but who knows - I haven't seen him in shorts for decades.

We used to be close - as in we did everything together for many years. I would say until I hit Manukau Intermediate for two years and he was still at Royal Oak Primary. I think it started about then.

Although going into separate bedrooms at 18 Korma Ave. about the time I started school at Royal Oak Primary may have contributed as well.

Whatever, increasingly, we got different friends, our interests more radically diverged, we didn't share stuff and I entered boy teenage fog at Mount Albert Grammar. I don't think he did. He's always been finely tuned.

By the time he caught up to me at MAGS he was my young brother who I didn't need to look after as I'd done at Royal Oak Primary.

Then we went to Auckland University. Me first, of course. I went into the arts, his path further diverged into sciences.

Our belief systems changed along the way. I became aware of social injustice. Our motivations changed.

I left home first. We lost touch more and more.

We met and fell for very different women.

I got married first, started a family first. Moved around the world.

It's now been a long time. We've grown apart, as many brothers and sisters do. But he's still my brother, he always will be, and I miss those years when we were ignorant of our differences and were close. 

Love and peace and happy birthday Ross Graham Purdy - Big Brother.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

I've got everything, like a moving ground, an open road, and everything (Deep Purple)

Holidays mean time for reading (usually while waiting for SWMBO in the car around Whangarei).

It's the start of week 38/52 for my reading goal. Book number 39 was a DC Comics collection called America At War

I picked it up from The Piggery after waiting a few months for it to reach a half price special. I'm not normally that patient but $44 seemed steep for a second hand comic book.

The main draw card for me was the inclusion of a few of my favourites - pre-eminently, Sgt. Rock!  

While browsing at Real Groovy I found book 40 - Ian Gillan's autobiography - Highway Star. Gillan being the lead singer for Deep Purple off and on since the early seventies. 

It's okay and kept me interested for the most part but he often pulls his punches in an annoying way - especially on his bandmates in Purple. So it's a little superficial at times and becomes focused too much on his 'solo' activities with the Ian Gillan Band and Gillan for my liking.

Current book (41) is a thriller of sorts - Chris Bohjalian's The Guest Room. Early days - page 22 but I'm already absorbed and impressed by his style.

Love and peace - Wozza

Monday, October 9, 2017

Met my friends all in the material world (George Harrison)

A Facebook message from Noel Forth,  an old mate (old as in I've known him for yonks), reminded me of my mid seventies silk screening activities.

I began via mucking around in art classes at MAGS during my second year fifth year (1973 for those keeping score); someone was impressed and asked me to screen print shirts for the rowing squad.

Hmm, I thought (to myself) - I could do this at home!

So I made my own silk screens and drew stencils to create some fan art.

Some designs for stencils

Noel in Adelaide had been a pen pal for a while and so, in a quid pro quo deal, he sent records and I sent bespoke screened T shirts. 

Which he wore!!!!

Collection of my fan art from 40 years ago

Some of the screens were really huge - the Lennon print is a mitre square!

Anyway, at the time I printed a copy of each shirt design onto a piece of material and squirreled them away into my keepsake suitcase.

And here they are...

And here's Noel modelling them (in legendary aussie bands Tortis and Vertical Hold) with Mick and Jim...

I know, only a glimpse, but clear proof. The last one is my Paul and Linda McCartney shirt - here's one of my prelim sketches for that stencil... 

And to finish, only Noel will appreciate this, but what the hey - I came across this in my treasure trove with the stencils: not sure why I did this - Noel may have the answer:

Love and peace - Warren Ono Purdy

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Yes, it is, it's true (The Beatles)

The happiest man is he who can connect the evening of his life with the beginning - so says Dante!

Okay - don't want to get too dramatic here. I've only turned 60 years old. No big deal. But...

I have found myself reconnecting with aspects of my youth all my life: my vinyl obsessions, and often a return to albums from the sixties and especially the seventies - my period; Look and Learn magazines; books/TV shows/movies that I've loved before, are some examples.

And I think I know why.
Far beyond childhood, when one recalls being read to or told a story, there is a renewal of the sense of being cared for. That positive emotional state can resurface throughout one’s life when narratives are heard. 
In addition, hearing the same book repeatedly allows the brain to seek its own intrinsic rewards. The brain’s response to making a choice or prediction that turns out to be correct is a release of dopamine, triggering a feeling of deep satisfaction and pleasure.
This extract is from an Edutopia article - The Neuroscience of Narrative and Memory.

It's a good thing. Yes, it is, it's true.

Love and peace - Wozza

Saturday, September 30, 2017

I am the blank page before you, I am the fine idea you crave (London Grammar)

Book 39
The latest Mojo Magazine tells me that Steve Winwood got his first guitar in 1957 and Jamaica's first vinyl pressing plant was established in Kingston in that year as well.

They say it's your birthday, well it's my birthday too yeah!

Yes, something huge happened 59+1 years ago in Auckland Nu Zild. Dulcie Mary Purdy went into labour and produced her first son. I emerged right on tea time on October 1.

Ta daar!!

But enough of that, here's another episode in the Wozza Culture Breakdown y'all. Starting with a gift from my staff at school - the Dr Seuss book was great!!

It's been a while since the last catch up. So, grab a coffee and settle in.

Books: Amazingly, it's week 35 and here are books 35 through 39.

35 - Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood being Eric Burden's autobiography (J Marshall Craig helped him with the words). 

What a (loveable) dick he is! Ripped off and forever chasing non-binding relationships, Eric comes across as a rambling man who never feels like he belongs anywhere for long. Sad in a way.

There's nothing much about his talent on offer in the narrative (whaaat??). Basically, he's a Geordie who can't hold down a steady crew. The only constant being his glorious voice but he's very silent about the effect his voice has on the various bands he's fronted. Curious.

He loves Hendrix, hates Alan Price, loves Chas Chandler, hates Mike Jeffery and every other manager he's (willingly) signed his soul to. Oh, and he loves a long line of bad girls!

I got the book from the Piggery. At the same time, picked up one of Frank Richards' Billy Bunter adventure, Billy Bunter and the Crooked Captain (book 36).

I used to read these voraciously when I was younger. Reading it again is still a treat!

Richards is a master plotter if you know what I mean.

Book 37 This Is Where I Leave You (Jonathan Tropper).

It's been made into a movie and I'll catch it on Netflix at some stage. It reads a little like the Steve Carell movie Dan In Real Life in parts. 
The main character, Judd, is like Michael from Thirtysomething.  

Which means I liked it!

Seth Godin is the man! I get his daily blog (which feels like chips off a bigger block). Some of those blocks of wisdom are compiled into Tribes (book 38).

Netfix series: we are currently battling Grounders, Mountainmen and Reapers on Season 2 of The 100. It's pretty graphic - flesh eating zombies, everything is a threat, violence is a way of life - that sort of thing.

Sport: I've watched a few NFL and Arsenal games. However, in the lead up to the end of the term, that has been a sporadic endeavour. 

I'm part of the Gooner tribe so it's been a roller coaster ride this season thus far. I am also of the Steeler tribe - have yet to watch one of their games though.

Music: With my birthday came a mammoth visit to Real Groovy in Auckland, Being in Queen Street it has also taken in JB HiFi (poor selection there now) and Marbecks Records in the Queen's Arcade.

One of my many purchases was a new copy of West Bruce and Laing's second studio album from 1973 - Whatever Turns You On. My original copy was pressed really badly in NZ and was almost unlistenable.

The latest copy from RG is an American version with a better cover and pristine sound. It's like listening to a new record. Jack Bruce and Leslie West and Corky Laing emerge clear as a bell from the murk of my memory. 

It has only taken me 44 years to find a better version and it only cost me $4.95.

Best birthday present ever!!

Love and peace - Wozza

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Everyone of them knew that as time went by they'd get a little bit older and a litter slower (The Beatles)

Photo by Ruth Caron on Unsplash
To paraphrase Paul McCartney, New Zealand, you are tremendous and no one knows like me (sarcasm).

What a joke. What a bunch of dithering turkeys we are.

Thanks to our inability to support either of the main political parties we are left with the smug narcissism of Winston Peters in government for the foreseeable future.

In case you haven't been keeping up in the back, we voted on Saturday and came up result. 

Neither the stodgy Bill English or the probably too youthful Jacinda Ardern could get enough seats for their respective parties to govern alone.

Which leaves the only certainty of NZ First leader Winston Peters in a government. OMG.

What an irony - we northlanders voted him out of his constituent seat! But we're stuck with him.

The only bright spot - his perculating botched old boy allegiance with National (my prediction) will clear the way for some dynamism with Jacinda Ardern getting a clear majority in the next election. 

Coming soon to a theatre near you!

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Jerry, I just don't know sometimes...(Marlene)

Jerry meets Beetle (Grace was playing hard to get) while Tango rides shotgun
Roch-dene is slowing filling up with animals. As I knew it would.

At the moment it's a bit of an ark - two horses, two wild turkeys, and two dogs (the six canaries kind of ruin the effect but what the hey).

Tango, Jerry and Wozza's
world famous legs.
Yes, Jerry has arrived. Jerry is a wee pedigree Border Collie puppy and cute as a button. 

In addition, we have Tango lodging with us to help socialise Jerry and for us to look after while William and Jade holiday in Bali.

This last weekend felt like we had a new toddler on the property - door barrier, chewy toys, fencing the back yard and fencing the front yard!

All to no avail because Jerry is also a Harry Houdini who just wanted to be with me or SWMBO.

Let the fun begin!

Love and peace - Wozza

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Old friends, memory brushes the same years (Simon and Garfunkel)

Photo by on Unsplash
Pals, buddies, mates, chums. 

Friendship. That's what this post is about. 

Hooked? Well - lay on, Macduff, and damned be him who first cries 'hold!'

I love Jerry Seinfeld's riff on friendship: 
When you're in your thirties it's very hard to make a new friend. Whatever the group is that you've got now that's who you're going with, you're not interviewing, you're not looking at any new people, you're not interested in seeing any applications.  
As for someone like me in my late fifties (for a few more days people, for a few more days), I largely stopped hiring decades ago.

My whanau list below has a number of people on it who I love but many I never hear from anymore. Yet, I know, for a large number of them, as soon as we reestablish contact...bam. Instant connection.

A connection forged from shared history.

My oldest chums that I pal around with via Facebook and email are few in number but incredibly important to me. Frinstance, GK (a.k.a. Billy Wallace) and I have been mates since 1974.

Recently, he reminded me of a time we collapsed into hilarity over a story in Craccum - Auckland University's student newspaper. 

Collapsing into laughter (with Kevin Simms usually on board as well) was an occupational hazard in those days.

Recently, I was in Real Groovy wading through the vinyl sale bins when three young male hipsters walked in loudly. For the next half hour they laughed their private jokes, kidded each other about certain albums, and engaged in a wide variety of banter. All pretty loud and obnoxious.

I was immediately presented with a picture of how Greg, Kevy and I must have looked as we visited Real Groovy back in the day.

Good times, Billy. Good times.

Love and peace - Wozza

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Welcome to Meadsville.

This one rocked me.

It's taking some time to come to terms with.

Colin Meads was super human. Immortal.


If Colin Meads can die, then I can too, and that's a sobering thought.

I knew him well. We all did. Like my mother, from the King Country. We grew up watching him. Shared the triumphs. Chests puffed out - nobody can beat the All Blacks!

Images: carrying the ball in one hand, locking the scrum for New Zealand with his brother Stanley, playing a test match with a broken arm. 

From then via farming adverts for hay bale twine, and fence posts, he epitomised the ruggedly brawny, quietly spoken, humble, words-are-cheap-deeds-are-dear New Zealand male we aspired to be.

And now, number 583's gone and gone too is some of our youth and our invincibility.

Remember him this way:

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

A motorcycle's throat-clearing rumble disturbed the road, drumming against the windows (J G Ballard)

Currently, I'm really enjoying the work of J G Ballard in Millennium People (week 31, book 34).

Front cover's Daily Mail pull quote says it's "seductively compelling". Right on, brother! 

It's nice to read a book without literary pretentions that feels like literature.

Try this bit - 
Sitting forward, he massaged his cheeks, trying to bring colour into the gaunt bones. 'Look at the world around you, David. What do you see? An endless theme park, with everything turned into entertainment. Science, politics, education - they're so many fairground rides. Sadly, people are happy to buy their tickets and climb aboard.'
Love and peace - Wozza

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Tell me how do you feel (New Order)

Watching Dunkirk last week drove me back to the original Winston Churchill speech and then, in typical surfing the interweb fashion, on to another movie version. Interesting to compare the two for emotional impact. 

For me, the biopic's visuals and the editing of the speech from the supposed writing to radio delivery is the more powerful, but, you be the judge.

What I really did love about the above scene was the moment Winston's young female secretary, typing the speech, noticed he'd entered another room. Her immediate reaction to follow him with a notepad said so much. No eye roll or sign of annoyance. Just obedience to the speech. 

Absorbed in the moment, masterful in thought, Winston's wandering was also a great character moment. 

My literary goal continues into the start of week 31 with the latest books: #33 - Notes on a Scandal (Zoë Heller) - a doozy story with a twisted narrator; and I've just started number 34 Millennium People (J G Ballard). 

Love and peace - Wozza

Monday, August 28, 2017

We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender (Winston Churchill)

Dunkirk. You've got to see it.

Preferably on a big screen. With a great sound system. That's essential.

Spoiler alert - we won the war, it's in the books, but not before some rum doings. And Winston Churchill was a great leader!

Sorry, it had to be said.

As to the film, Christopher Nolan and Hans Zimmer are a brilliant combination.

If you're worried that it's a war movie and therefore a bit of a tired genre, don't fret. Nolan and Zimmer combine to make an extraordinary film which will leave you buzzing, says I.

Even as I watch this trailer I tense up again, as it gives a real sense of the power of the film via its sound and fury. 

You need to see this film!

Love and respect - WNP

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Does she walk? Does she talk? Does she come complete? (J Geil's Band)

This post by Seth Godin is super scary.

First, here's the post...

An audience of one

More than ever, people, lots of people, hordes of anonymous people, can watch what you do.
They can see your photos, like your posts, friend your digital avatar.
An essentially infinite collection of strangers are in the audience, scoring you, ranking you, deciding whether or not you're succeeding.
If you let them.
The alternative is to focus on the audience you care about, interacting with the person who matters to you. Your audience, your choice. One person, ten people, the people who need you.
Everyone else is merely a bystander. 
What's scary? Everything.
The realisation that I'm being watched. That this is increasing. That I choose to be watched via this blog. That it's essentially infinite. That I'm judged. At all times. That the alternative means walking away from digital platforms. That Seth is right. That there are people who need me. Who are they? Am I embracing them? Why? Why not?
And now, today's post..............................................................
I love this photo.

Why do I love it so?

It feels real, and yet she's posing, right? The coffee table looks right - the angle of the paper (she's a writer); the cord to the right, sockets above the pictures, and dinged skirting board to the left are left in the picture. 

Pose is leaning and direct. She's at work, yet she's a girl interrupted. A super girl. But she wouldn't actually work on her tele-play on this couch. Half annoyed smile, half smug smile. Enigmatic.

The couch itself is a beautiful rich blue. Solid. Yet spungee. Not comfortable, but looks comfortable.

Pictures on the wall are a weird mix. She writes for Supergirl. But those others? Depth! Or maybe not. Is she a girl angel?

And, there's an elephant in the room! Love it!

Love, peace, embracing hug - Wozza.