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Doing my civic duty is more entertaining this year somehow. - Tactical Ninja

Sep. 26th, 2013

08:56 am - Doing my civic duty is more entertaining this year somehow.

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Remember that aspiring local body politician I quoted the other day? Well, I also posted a link to it on Twitter. And last night at 1am I got a reply:




I think what he's trying to say here is that we are all headed towards eating healthy sandwiches on park benches and that we should have cafes where everything is $5. That we all need to have 4 neighbours on our street and he will give them THERMOMETERS because then they will only heat their homes to a cosy 18 degrees and that will save power.

Of course, for many people in Wellington, getting their homes up to 18 degrees first would be a good start. Thermometers won't fix this, insulation will. So anyway, I replied to the guy going "Dude, you need to work on clarifying your statements. Your code is almost indecipherable." Because I had to make a lot of assumptions to turn his words into policy, and he comes across as eccentric at best. I am actually concerned the guy has lost it and will probably leave him alone now.


Seriously, local body elections are hilarious. For a start, we have a comedian running for one of the wards (the same one as our mate up there actually, now that'd be entertaining..).

But the thing I'm finding most amusing about it is the way a lot of the people who are running are utterly clueless. I mean seriously. We have John Morrison, who just last week stated loudly and publicly that he wanted to shower with a body art model at a Rotary Club event and then followed up with "I am not a misogynist, I work well with women" in his apology.

But wait, there's more. You know how when folks are trying to get elected they fill your mailbox with bits of paper saying why you should vote for them? Well, John Morrison thought it'd be a good idea to personalise his ones. So the man of the house got one that was about sports, and the woman got one that was about parking for shopping.

Guess who's not getting my vote? Or that of pretty much any self-respecting woman?

And then there's Rex Nicholls, who's running for council and I've been told is married to ex-mayor Kerry Prendergast. This man completely fails at social media. Yesterday's tweet from him regarding the encumbent mayor Celia Wade-Brown:



As you can imagine, this went all over the Wellington corner of the internet quite quickly too - because there's nothing like criticising a female politician's appearance to bring them down a peg or two reveal yourself as petty and sexist. So anyway, I replied to that too:

Because I am a smartarse.

So anyway, after an entertaining day of taking the piss out of the candidates, last night I sat down to do my postal ballot. I studiously read all the people's policies before ranking them in preferential order (we use the Single Transferable Vote system). While I was reading I came across this statement:

"Our family enjoy all the normal things Wellingtonians love - Saturday morning sports, taking the dog to the bech, walking in the greenbelt, and occasionally sleeping in!"

To which Dr Wheel and I both went "That is normal? Shit, we're doing it wrong!" Which led to a discussion of what normal is and how many people actually do those things he thinks are normal on a regular basis. I had to know. So without further ado, I present:

Poll #1935678 Tats' Unscientific Poll of the Largest Number of Normal People She Knows

Which of the following do you do regularly?

Saturday morning sports
0(0.0%)
Taking the dog to the beach
1(3.4%)
Walking in the green belt
5(17.2%)
Sleeping in occasionally!
18(62.1%)
None of the above
5(17.2%)

Which of the following do you think normal people do regularly?

Saturday morning sports
7(14.0%)
Taking the dog to the beach
8(16.0%)
Walking in the green belt
9(18.0%)
Sleeping in occasionally!
20(40.0%)
None of the above
6(12.0%)


And a third question that the poll widget wouldn't let me add because it can't handle two kinds of response: What the hell is normal anyway?

*ahem*


Please fill out my poll, it is important for our political process!

Meanwhile, you know what I'd vote for? A council that employs waste management contractors who aren't fascists. Seriously. The list of instructions on how to present your recycling is a whole bloody page, and if you get one thing wrong they just don't pick it up.

Yesterday, ours got left behind. I checked it against the instructions and can't see anything wrong with it. There was no sticker (apparently they are supposed to leave a sticker?) telling us there was anything wrong with it. They just left it. They won't be back for two weeks, by which time we'll have twice as much recycling (the bin is already full) and still no clue as to what exactly wasn't perfect with our recycling presentation.

Unimpressed Tats is unimpressed and will be phoning the council for a moan today. And then probably putting our recycling in the landfill just to get rid of it. I am not convinced this is an effective way of encouraging Wellingtonians to recycle, just saying.

Comments:

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From:dianavilliers
Date:September 25th, 2013 09:02 pm (UTC)
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There is nothing occasional about my sleeping in.
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From:tatjna
Date:September 25th, 2013 09:04 pm (UTC)
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In that case, you make up for my complete lack of it (seriously, 3:54 this morning, wtf body?), and averaged out we are clearly normal.
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From:downwardlashes
Date:September 25th, 2013 09:52 pm (UTC)
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You've got so many very interesting candidates. Wow.
One time we had a really grumpy garbage man who scolded us for not bringing out both garbage cans, even though one of them was completely empty. I'm glad he's not our garbage guy anymore.
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From:tatjna
Date:September 25th, 2013 09:55 pm (UTC)
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We never see the rubbish collection people. The recycling ones don't ever get out of their vehicles - the rules around recycling are set up so they don't have to.

We also don't have cans for rubbish but these yellow plastic bags. They are apparently more cost-effective? But they are also quite vulnerable to any wandering dog that smells something tasty..
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From:downwardlashes
Date:September 26th, 2013 05:07 am (UTC)
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Oh no, yeah, that can be a problem! When I was growing up in a more rural area, garbage bags got strewn about by raccoons all the time, and it was really just a horrible thing to have to clean up.
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From:pombagira
Date:September 26th, 2013 01:49 am (UTC)
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its my birthday..... not that that has anything to do with politics.. but i have a new sewing machine, some fabric, some new dress making sissors.. *squee* which have a sticker saying happy birthday polly on it.. go the sewing machine shop in kelburnie.. and i might have a shiny new smart phone soon.. nobody claimed the one i took to the police station three months ago so, i get it.. whoot

umm.. yeah.. just had to share.. i will post pics on my blog and lj later..
*beams*
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From:tatjna
Date:September 26th, 2013 01:51 am (UTC)
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Wheeee, happy birthday lady! Yay for shiny new sewing machines!

And in other Polly's Birthday news, grist brought Yorick's brain back for me today, so now I can crack on with putting it all together! ;-D
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From:pombagira
Date:September 26th, 2013 01:52 am (UTC)
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hooray.. most excellent..

*skips about*

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From:t_c_da
Date:September 26th, 2013 03:55 am (UTC)

Poll Questions

(Link)
Err, Tats, you left out the obvious answer to both halves of your poll - F) All of the above.

Used to do Saturday sports when there were school kids at home, don't have a greenbelt up here to walk in, and don't have a dog any more either. Sleepins would be appreciated, but my body is so used to 6am starts five days a week that it refuses to ignore the other two days...
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From:tatjna
Date:September 26th, 2013 08:17 pm (UTC)

Re: Poll Questions

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Um, you could have ticked all the boxes you know.. that's pretty much the same as 'all of the above.'
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From:bekitty
Date:September 26th, 2013 04:30 am (UTC)
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I am rapidly coming to the conclusion that Donald McDonald is a new version of @Horse_ebooks. I mean, seriously.
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From:tatjna
Date:September 26th, 2013 08:18 pm (UTC)
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It would be kind of cool if he were performance art. Sadly I think he's actually like that all the time, in which case I feel quite sorry for him.
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From:pickleboot
Date:September 26th, 2013 04:54 am (UTC)
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i live in minnesota where everyone, it seems, but keir and me, get up insanely early on the weekend and go out walking by lakes, throw sticks for their kids/dogs, and then emerge from all of this activity with perfect hair and clothing with no stains.

we do take the dogs down to the beach and long line it with toby when no one is there as he loves to chase fish, and my kids spend more time out of doors than inside while the weather is nice, but man, i would rather sleep in then enjoy the day in my garden, sitting and chatting with neighbors and having drinks.
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From:tatjna
Date:September 26th, 2013 08:18 pm (UTC)
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So Minnesota is where all the people in the ads for the white middle class granola lifestyle come from?
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From:spotsofcolour
Date:September 26th, 2013 09:22 am (UTC)
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I am a big supporter of the 'Sleeping In' movement.
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From:tatjna
Date:September 26th, 2013 08:19 pm (UTC)
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It seems you are not alone! ;-)
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From:vernacularity
Date:September 26th, 2013 10:23 am (UTC)
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can't sleep in, too much to do.
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From:tatjna
Date:September 26th, 2013 08:19 pm (UTC)
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In my case, can't sleep in because my body thinks 3:30 is a great time to get up. ;-/
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From:laughingmagpie
Date:September 26th, 2013 02:30 pm (UTC)
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*phew* I'm so glad I read your post this morning! It reminded me that it was garbage day and I tore outside to put the bins out.

For mysterious reasons my recycling wasn't picked up last week either! So the recycling bin is crammed. The system here is pretty forgiving - all recycling goes into the same bin and it gets sorted by the city - so it wasn't for fascist reasons. Probably more for just-didn't-do-your-street reasons.

In another coincidence our civic elections are underway right now too. But so far no one near as entertaining as your Wellington posse.
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From:tatjna
Date:September 26th, 2013 08:21 pm (UTC)
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Hee, so glad I could be helpful!

Turns out our recycling wasn't picked up because in our street, of all the streets in Wellington, they go past at 6:30am. Never mind that the notice says your stuff must be out by 8am (I put it out just after 7). So basically we have to put it out the night before or get up especially to do it. But not before 8pm apparently because that's breaking some kind of bylaw.

*gnng*
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From:decemberthirty
Date:September 26th, 2013 06:10 pm (UTC)
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I just want to express how impressed I am that you managed to make any meaning at all out of that first tweet. Seems like utter gibberish to me! Although I wouldn't mind eating a healthy sandwich while sitting on a park bench.

As for the poll, I clicked on 'walking in the green belt,' since I do hike fairly regularly in various parks and nature preserves and things, although we don't have anything specifically called a green belt here in Philadelphia... But I assume that's sort of close to what was meant? I will say that I love the rather hilarious and specific summary of what passes for normality...
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From:tatjna
Date:September 26th, 2013 08:24 pm (UTC)
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Heh, I have had many years of practice deciphering builder speak and turning it into policy speak. ;-)

The green belt is a literal belt of green space that encircles Wellington City, which by law must never be built on. It means the central city is separated from the suburbs by this strip of bush that's full of walkways and stuff. I go through it every morning to go to work, which is quite nice. ;-)
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From:pundigrion
Date:September 26th, 2013 08:57 pm (UTC)
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I don't live near the Green Belt here, but I do go for hikes now and then. Mostly I get up early and do...stuff. Or go to the farmer's market and then do stuff really.

I have heard of this sleeping in thing...

Our recycling folks must be kin to yours! They are excellent at finding ways *not* to take your blue bins, even after you have meticulously sorted, bagged, washed, and so forth. I miss having flat out commingled recycling that all went into one bin! Half of it can't even actually be recycled here either. We don't have the facilities for glass so that gets crushed and used under the roadbeds. Glass is one of the most recyclable of materials too and this can't possibly be cheaper than using gravel!
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From:eska_rina
Date:September 27th, 2013 11:04 am (UTC)
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While I clicked "Sleeping in occasionally!" I probably must admit that I meant... "Sleeping in all. the. time!".

I wouldn't touch our own local elections with a ten foot pole, so I'm impressed whenever anyone does it!
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From:tatjna
Date:September 27th, 2013 07:58 pm (UTC)
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It really does feel like a duty, and an onerous one at that. But I figure if I don't vote then the chances of people I don't agree with getting voted in is even higher, and that's enough to scare me into doing it. ;-)
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