Saturday, March 28, 2009
Every year I watch the HK Sevens and think back to when I went there. I think that it's the last time NZ actually won it in 2001 (and we were lucky as from memory Aussie were up by about 10 points with a minute left before doing a couple of dmub things allowing us in for a couple of tries and a last minute conversion gave us the semi win. We then dicked Fiji in the final). Rip off beers at $12NZ for a large cup, the equivalent of about a pint I suppose and they played 3 songs on a loop for 3 days. That Tom Jones Sex Bomb song, a J Lopez song and one other. Talk about a marketing disaster. They seem to have moved on thankfully as I haven't noticed the same songs in the background in years since. Highlight for me was my Canadian mate putting Mapel leaf stickers all over the place including our luxury hotel entrance and on police car bonnets.
Warriors crap out but actually probably a good time to get it. They will still be in the top area of the table and have 21 matches left so should slap themselves in the face and get back on the pony. Although if people think you can just tick yourself off and win in the NRL you have another thing coming. Teams bring it every week and if you don't you may as well run onto the paddock with your pants round your ankles.
Friday, March 27, 2009
Tigers, Titans, Warriors, Eels, Storm, Knights, Dragons, Manly
$10 @ 66
$10 @ 6.6
$10 @ 4.9
Warriors head to head
$10 @ 5.2
Cowboys/Melbourne draw at halftime or fulltime
$10 @ 36.4
Season total = - $100
An Australian couple has upset Kiwis with an online expat guide which warns that Auckland is a "horrible soulless city" and its inhabitants are "hobbits" who cannot dress properly.
The anonymous duo have used their website, fushnchups.co.nz to attack their new home here, rubbishing everything from the country's beer to its major cities and lack of worldliness.
"I was horrified that I couldn't buy a copy of The Age, even in the major bookstores. True story," wrote the bloggers, a professional couple in their late 20s.
They sum up the largest city, Auckland, as horrible and soulless, a comment the city's tourism chief executive, Graeme Osborne, took exception to.
"Maybe they're just envious that Auckland recently rated ahead of every Australian city as a tourist destination," Osborne said.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Tigers v Roosters
Tigers by 10
Who the flupp knows? Both teams deciding they'll play one week and not bother tackling in the other. I like the Tigers more though.
Titans v Bulldogs
Titans by 4
The Bulldogs will have had the wind taken out of their sails and didn't entirely impress me last weekend. I was expecting to see them beat the Panthers with room to spare not throw 14 players out there and get a last minute try and conversion to snatch a fake win. Titans will grind them out at home.
Warriors v Broncos
Warriors by 8
This should be a little ripper. I am going to pick the Warriors at home all year though I know they will drop the odd match. This is a possible candidate but with a massive crowd and a good dose of confidence they would have to be favoured to carry it on and be the only team on 6 points after 3 rounds.
Raiders v Eels
Raiders by 10
Never underestimate the power of a shit performance motivating a team for next week. Once got spanked 110-5 in a game of rugby only to get a win the next weekend. Ah the memories of watching the backs of Otahuhu players running under the sticks for 80 minutes. they only beat us by 40-0 next time. We cleverly took 9 penalty shots at goal from all over the park to use up the clock.
Cowboys v Storm
Cowboys by 4
The jockeys will ride onwards after last weeks effort hurdling the Storm which is more like a strong wind and persistent rain when compared to previous years. Confidence is a great thing, especially when used whilst strutting round your own dressage arena. OK, I will avoid stupid puns from now on. Maybe.
Rabbitohs v Knights
Rabbitohs by 6
The Rabbitohs will be staring down the barrel if they lose this. Starting the season with 3 home games v 3 ordinary teams and coming away with 2 points will see them asking for a poison drop down their own warren. The Knights grabbed a win and so won't be quite as hungry and that will prove the difference. Damn, more puns.
Dragons v Sharks
Dragons by 4
The Sharks played like shit last weekend and the Dragons are just shitheads. Expect a fairly tight match with 40 points scored all up.
Sea Eagles v Panthers
Sea Eagles by 14
There's no way the Sea Eagles will ditch three games running, especially at home. They were pretty decent v the Warriors and should have held on if not for SOME STACEY JONES MAGIC (especially for LB) and are up against a Panthers lineup that probably just won't have the guns nor the confidence to get the job done.
Friday, March 20, 2009
But the round should also start to reveal some of the form teams in the competition.
After last week I'm starting to question whether Manly will again be a force to be reckoned with this season - losing stalwart Steve Menzies and one of their best in Steve Bell they have to be considerably weakened.
Then again they just won the World Club Challenge (no easy feat) and Brookvale, aka The Fortress, is a fairly formidable home ground.
Good for the Warriors chances that they play Manly this weekend while fullback Brett Stewart is still out through suspension.
I can't understand how he gets suspended by the NRL for being drunk at an official function, when clearly Anthony Watmough was just as pissed and clearly worse-behaved at the same function yet escapes any official punishment whatsoever from the NRL.
Anyways, tips for the week:
Tip 1: head to head
$10 @ 115.6
Titans +5.5 points
Melbourne 12 and under
Cowboys head to head
Raiders head to head
Sharks head to head
$10 @ 11.7
$10 @ 6.8
Round 1: -$50.
Thursday, March 19, 2009
anyway, aim to see a couple of this weeks games like, fo real.
Broncos v Storm
Storm by 4
Big game, even matchup, I'm edging towards the Storm because of the coaching being an unfair matchup but it's a bit of a coin toss. Will be one of those tight ones that comes down to a kick or two and a drop goal.
Rabbitohs v Eels
Rabbitohs by 8
Hmmmmmmm, sometimes teams play like crap after having a team roll over and die for them the week before and the Rabbitohs could fall victim to that. Especially against a solid Eels side who won't want to be 0-2. But I'll go out on a limb and give the bunnies a pat like my two year old did in the Kumeu Show last weekend.
Dragons v Titans
Dragons by 10
The Titans surged home at home and I think that's what will favour the Dragons this week. Even sorts of teams but the crowd will get the Dragons over the line.
Panthers v Bulldogs
Bulldogs by 12
The panthers could turn up and turn on a (small) show but the Bulldogs look to have hit the ground running this year and I expect their momentum to last for a few weeks at least.
Cowboys v Tigers
Cowboys by 14
The Cowboys are going to rock out with their cocks out this weekend. A shit year last year and a narrow loss last week. They will be focussed and edgy and the Tigers will be on the end of it.
Raiders v Roosters
Raiders by 16
Raiders are often dynamite in the nations capital and the Roosters look turgid. Oh how sad. Bitch slap them green machine. And make it hurt.
Sea Eagles v Warriors
Sea Eagles by 4
One team kind of proved a point last week, while the other needs to prove one this weekend. Sea Eagles to just have that mental edge to get them over the line. If the Warriors can win its the type of win that will get Warriors fans salivating and trying to hide their hard-on.... or not, as the case may be.
Sharks v Knights
Sharks by 8
Unfortunately for the Knights they are starting with a couple of road games. If they'd played the Titans and Sharks in Newcastle I'd have happily tipped them and they'd be off to the sort of start that would launch them on the road to the playoffs. They'll win plenty at home and upset a few on the road but not for a while yet.
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
It covers the usual hot topics: sun spots, IPCC's failure to predict that temps would actually decrease every year since 2002, and speculates that climate change is likely natural.
Then he links environmental efforts to sub-prime lending and suggests people/companies who invest in renewable energy will lose all when the market collapses as the global warming myth is exposed, and hopes the government's ETS review will reveal that no action is the wisest course of action.
- Warming of the climate system is unequivocal
- Spatial agreement between regions of significant warming across the globe and locations of significant observed changes in many systems consistent with warming is very unlikely to be due solely to natural variability.
- Eleven of the last twelve years (1995-2006) rank among the twelve warmest years in the instrumental record of global surface temperature. (since 1850)
- Continued GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions at or above current rates would cause further warming and induce many changes in the global climate system during the 21st century that would very likely be larger than those observed during the 20th century
I have nominated the article for the Christopher Booker prize 2009.
The winner gets a helping hand on their one way kayaking trip to the Arctic, however I can't help thinking the organization which publishes the winning article also deserves an award.
In other climate change denial news here's George Monbiot's top 10 deniers!
Friday, March 13, 2009
Thursday, March 12, 2009
But to see me against my deadliest rivals click here and then meet in the forum to bitch slap like bitches. Slapping.
I'm going to kick the ball off here and now.
Arguably Round One is the hardest round to pick of the season on the surface of it. You have to go on previous form (from 5-6 months ago) and account for any major player movements in or out of the respective sides. But no fucken excuses aye!
Broncos v Cowboys
Broncos by 2
The Cowboys will have a lot to prove after a hideous 2008. But then again so do the Broncos after saying goodbye to dad, Wayne Bennett. The Broncos have acquired Israel Folau and will also feature names like Weinstein, Glenn, Yeh, Kenny, Gorrell and Te'o so there's a bit of a fresh flavour to the side. The Cowboys look stronger on paper (though they looked pretty good there last year too) with some good signings and it should make the game a cracker with the Cowboys having the talent to blow the Broncos apart if they get going. But home advantage with a new coach sees me favour them by a nose.
Storm v Dragons
Storm by 8
The Dragons have become slightly more likeable with Bennett as coach, so now I just despise them rather than loathe them. For a couple of weeks anyway. Storm should shag them though a part of me wants to see their wee 'dynasty' end so I can laugh at Leg Break now and then.
Bulldogs v Sea Eagles
Sea Eagles by 8
The Bulldogs have added a few good signings including Kimmorley and (psychopath) Ennis while the Sea Eagles are reasonably settled (on the field at least) in terms of playing lineups. The off-field stuff may just give the Bulldogs a look in psychologically but surely the same players who smashed the Storm and Warriors in 08 will show up again.
Warriors v Eels
Warriors by 14
Sharks v Panthers
Sharks by 12
Similar looking lineups to last season. The Panthers were hot and cold all year while the Sharks were cold to watch but know how to win ugly. More of the same in 09 I bet zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.
Titans v Knights
Titans by 2
The Titans have used the off season to get over all their bloody injuries and will field a side similar to what got them going places in the first half of 08. The Knights are a team that has been on the rise with lots of no names but I think they could be a darkhorse for the playoffs. If not then there will be another big cull before they start again. It's now or never for this lineup.
Roosters v Rabbitohs
Roosters by 10
Much as I'd like the Rabbitohs to have a decent season because they have such a cute little team I can't see them doing much unless they play a helter skelter style of play ala the Tigers in 05. I doubt their coach will have the balls to go for it though and he will consign them to making up the numbers and avoiding the last couple of spots on the ladder.
Tigers v Raiders
Tigers by 6
An even looking lineup without a hell of a lot of superstars but lots of good quality footballers on show. Home ground advantage wins again here until I've seen them lay something down on the paddock.
and that's that.
Monday, March 09, 2009
The best part is, these cost nothing, and are certain to dominate both the front pages and the water-cooler type chatter. A master-stroke and a first class diversion. There's probably only so many times you can get away with such tactics, but as an example of political management of the media it's second-to-none. Something Labour wasn't capable of in its third term as National's messages (nanny-state, blah blah) made all the noise.
Update: I just remembered I've written about this before, when Darth George called for the reinstatement of knight- and damehoods. Finally we have rejoined Papau New Guinea in distributing these things:
As for the first claim, titles like "Sir" are certainly distinctive in a way that prestigious honours like "ONZ" are not. This seems to be true and is unfortunate. But as for the claim that "he appellation Sir carries weight no matter where you go" ... well, you can't get it in Australia (finally ceased in 1986; highest award: Order of Australia), Canada (generally discontinued since 1919; highest award: Order of Canada), the United States, Ireland, South Africa (discontinued 1952), or too many other countries where English is widely spoken as far as I can tell. Except Papua New Guinea of course - perhaps that's what Darth means by "international".
Saturday, March 07, 2009
I mean we look absolutely hopeless.
We are a country that has a HUUUUUUGE touch scene in summer and is flowing now into sevens rugby before the rugby season kicks off proper (I'm excluding the Super 14 because quite frankly who gives a shit, it's still cricket season - albeit a wet one).
Surely we can produce very good sevens sides. The sides I have seen repping NZ recently are well organised but on the talent front they are utter shit.
And I mean utter shit.
Slow, cumbersome, average club footballer shit.
I don't know what sort of side Wales are putting together for this stuff but given that they are in the middle of a 6-Nations competition I'd doubt it's that flash. maybe they have called on a lot of professional players in the same way NZ would if we had test matches on and nothing else. I'm sure we could get together a 'name' side if we said all Super 14 players were available outside ABs but all the same.... we are utter shit.
On a brighter note, fuck rugby union. The real rugby is about to begin.
A competition which knows when to begin.
Look below for the bennyasena lowdown on where to put your money. He's a pro, and I'm a ho. Ho' for league fo' life!
But given a little time, the right training, and a lot of heart, the ungainly foal went on to turn a depression on its head for many a hard-up punter.
He gave people down on their luck a reason to look up again, he repaid the unemployed and struggling with enough courage to lay their last farthing on him with a bookie, many many times over.
He gave punters hope.
Within years that Kiwi runt was a national hero known alternatively The Red Terror, Big Red and officially Phar Lap.
In 2009, the world finds itself in a similar position - the repugnant behaviour of the world's wealthiest individuals and its unchecked financial systems has hit the little man hardest again.
While the the little man's house gets repossesed the Madoffs of our world sit pretty in their million dollar apartments.
While the world's biggest companies get billions in tax payer bailouts and their chief executives' salaries rocket the little man is told he has to work fewer hours to save his mates' jobs.
Its time for people to seize their destiny back, to stop swallowing the stinking shit of big business, to take on the very system that fucks them over, and emerge defiantly waving their middle finger in the face of the Man.
Bloggingitreal brings to you NRL 2009 - tipping.
For the coming 30 rounds of the NRL 2009 Season I will be placing
5 x $10 multibets with the New Zealand TAB; week in and week out.
- One bet must tip a team across every match (i.e. tip 8 winning teams head to head)
- I cannot bet against myself (i.e take one team in one mulitbet and pick the other team in another)
- I cannot bet more than $10 on a single bet (this will change in the finals when fewer teams are competing)
- All bets will be posted prior to the start of the round on Friday nights
- All results will be posted, win-loss ration records kept
Some matches I will just tip, on others I will provide detailed analysis and rational for my bets.
I will analyze the tips of professional punters at onthepunt, monitor the experts' tips and rugby league journalism at smh.com.au in order to bring you the inside word.
So open those TAB accounts, raid the coin jars and ashtrays, and get ready to feel good about life again!
Wednesday, March 04, 2009
My suspicion is that they will go with a 3 pool type system largely for these sorts of reasons:
The essential weaknesses can't be repaired under the current format.
For one, teams don't play at home often enough, robbing their fans of live action at a reasonable hour and limiting the revenue-gathering potential as well. It has taken four rounds for the Blues to appear at home this year, which has given the season a surreal and distant start for their supporters. Worse still, the South African Cheetahs won't play at home until April 4, in the eighth round of the competition. That alone says this is a competition screaming out for an overhaul.
From a New Zealand point of view, the South African teams in
particular have struggled to forge clear identities, rendering a lot of the competition as deadwood. Whereas in the old days an Aucklander might have taken a reasonable interest in say a clash between Canterbury and Otago, New Zealanders don't give two hoots about a game between the Cheetahs and Reds, or the Force and the Brumbies.
What they should do in my opinion is add a 5th Aussie side (wherever they like and include a Pacific Island side in their competition as well giving them 6 teams. They are the weakest of the 3 playing nations and its never going to be because they have one less Super12/14 side, it's always going to be because more Aussies play league, AFL, football, cricket, swim with sharks etc. They are competitive at international level (yes, I know they have won 2 world cups) but they do not have the record of a South African or All Black side week in and week out because it's not a massive sport in OZ and NEVER will be.
That would mean adding an extra NZ side perhaps in the central North Island somewhere. It's a bit tricky because they could play at New Plymouth, Tauranga or Hawke's Bay so a decision would need to be made there about the venue likely to get the biggest support. The other option would be a Northern side based at North Harbour Stadium and maybe playing a game or two in Whangarei. Hard to know and a lot of population/crowd/economy/facility crunching etc would be needed.
You'd play each side home and away in your region giving 10 games then play perhaps 3 teams from each of the other zones (3 at home and 3 away). On the alternate year you would play the other 3 sides that you hadn't played the year before. That gives you 16 matches best spread over 17 weeks exactly like the NFL. Then have the top 2 from each plus best 2 3rd placed sides.
yes, I know, it gets a bit mickey mouse there but you have to have an even number of teams divided by 4 or else whatever you come up with won't work. Odd numbers don't work, giving teams a week off in round one doesn't work because who gets it off? The top 3 teams overall? Nope, because then how do you get a game for each of them the following week without having 3 matches and 3 winners leaving ummmm, 3 teams to fight it out in a match meant for two.
So for example assume NZ and SA provide 3 sides each and Aussie 2...
The top side in the comp (Blues) gets to play the worst of the 3rd placed sides (Stormers).
The 2nd zone winner (Bulls) plays the other 3rd placed side (Crusaders).
The 3rd of the zone winners (Waratahs) plays the next worst team (Hurricanes) and the best 2nd placed side (Sharks) gets the other match v a fellow 2nd placed side (Brumbies).
Then obviously the higher ranked winners get home advantage over the lower ranked winners.
What will be interesting is if Aussie push for not just a 5th side but also a 6th side. They will be mud if they do that. It's a shame rugby in NZ is stronger than OZ because it would actually be better if we in NZ included a Pacific Island side. It would suit us better with our population base.
But no doubt the proposal will be absolutely bizzarre, involve huge amounts of travel to far flung places and mean we see piss all of the local derbies we always loved.
With the season split into 'two' it would work beautifully if they had 5 zone games then went to the 6 matches home and away mid season after each teams supporters had seen their team 5 times either live or live on tellie (not stupid 5am matches). You go on a 3 match road trip spread over 4 weeks and come home to play your 3 matches at home v overseas teams before the return fixtures for the NZ sides. Or vice versa with 3 at home, 3 on the road and then your last 5 games leading into the playoff series.
I can't wait to get back to New York City where at least when I walk down the street, no one ever hesitates to tell me exactly what they think of me.
Cuban media didn’t report much on President Obama’s first foreign visit…to Canada. I don’t blame them, they had their own cabinet shuffles to take care of.
So I missed all the hype of Obama coming to Ottawa, and only by accident did I manage to find out that Harper went to New York.
Now New York is a special place. It’s a place where world leaders come to gather all the time. It’s a city filled with spaces for world leaders to interact with people, connect with like-minded souls, muster political support, and to garner inspiration.
And there are right ways to do this and wrong ways to do this.
Let’s compare, shall we:
Times Square has never been so bare. Two body guards and a dumb-ass grin. Pathetic.
Monday, March 02, 2009
When I happened upon this sentence...
They will also seek ways to expand bilateral exchanges in information and telecommunications, education, culture and human resources; and how to overcome the global financial turmoil and allow Korean companies to participate in building a broadband infrastructure in New Zealand.
I would susbstitute the word "participate" with "take the fuck over".Now that's what I'm mo fo talking about. 3+ hours to download a movie in NZ at our place. 8 minutes when we were recently in Korea. And soon to be closer to 8 seconds once they move to the next era of supu dupa computa cable err uta's. Not to mention they won't price gouge or put caps on download amounts. Download caps are so last century in Hanguk. Dae Han Min Guk!!!!