Loving the shells but 30 years’ waiting too long
WHEN I left Dunedin more than 20 years ago there was talk about livening up the wharf area and the Steamer Basin. The cold, buffeting northeasterly wind — such a boon for the flying windsurfers — was held up then as a reason why that area would remain uninviting, whatever was done to improve it.
While that nor’easter still blows with some ferocity down there, I find it hard to believe anyone could dislike, or disagree with, the amazing vision of architect Damien van Brandenburg for that precinct, brought to life by Ian Taylor’s stunning animation. It will certainly breathe new life into the area and make it incredibly inviting. My only concern is whether I’ve got the patience to wait 30 years for it to happen.
If there’s one thing that makes me laugh, it’s people who don’t have a sense of humour, or an appreciation of irony or of the obvious. So when I read that someone didn’t like it because they thought it looked too much like a cockleshell — as if nobody else had noticed that — I laughed out loud.
I’d be happy to hear from anyone who thinks there are any other obviously Dunedin objects that could be included in the design — maybe a rhododendron bloom or a representation of a curving hilltop with a tall mast on it, aka Mt Cargill.
So let’s segue from the future and the technology that allows us to see what it might look like, into another form of technology and where it can go wrong — notably, predictive texts that went awry.
A colleague who wishes to remain anonymous reports her failure in attempting to send a ‘‘many happies’’ birthday text, which came out instead as ‘‘many nappies’’.
Reader Carl Sagstad bamboozled his mother with a text that read: ‘‘Went to see Lesbian Tables last night, just amazing.’’
‘‘It was meant to be Les Miserables,’’ he says. ‘‘My mum was so confused — she thought it might be some sort of exhibition.’’
More embarrassingly, Carl also texted on a dating app: ‘‘I go to gym classes and also wa*k a lot.’’
‘‘It was meant to be ‘walk’. I never heard from that person again.’’
A bit soon maybe?
I reckon the best one so far belongs to ODT and now Star reporter Shawn McAvinue.
‘‘I texted a couple I had interviewed asking them to supply a ‘newsy’ photo. It got changed to ‘nudie.’’
Imagine trying to explain that one away.
Today’s animal matchup photo has an interesting provenance.
Gretchen Kivell, of Opoho, says it is a family heirloom from at least 80 years ago.
‘‘From the age of 6 my father lived in a suburb of Bradford, Yorkshire, in a terraced house. My grandparents ran a greengrocer’s from the ground floor.
‘‘They would shut up shop at lunchtime Saturday and take a bus to St Ives’ Estate near Bingley, where a relative lived on a farm. They had use of a farmhouse, leaving again late Sunday by bus to be ready for the new week.
‘‘The photo would have been taken on that estate.’’
If you read the photo caption, do you think I spelt ‘‘ay up’’ correctly? Any thoughts?
Finally, it’s good to hear my predecessor Dave Cannan, of The Wash fame, is keeping busy in retirement.
Apparently at the St Clair Golf Club yesterday he snaffled 47 stableford points.
Is that good or bad?
Ay up! There were some strange goingson at this Yorkshire farm more than 80 years ago — and no mistake. Thanks to Gretchen Kivell, of Opoho, for sharing this family photo of an unusual animal matchup.
Warms the cockles . . . The suggested cockleshell hotel and cultural centre in Damien van Brandenburg’s plan for the Steamer Basin area.