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February 2009

The Archives

  • Almost Amazing Race

    The Almost Amazing Summary

    26.02.09 | Permalink | Comments Off on The Almost Amazing Summary

    The Almost Amazing RaceSo what is The Almost Amazing Race then? Here’s a description of an interesting day out and about in Wellington, to be had on Saturday the 28th of March.

    Teams of four will race (observing road rules and other laws of the land) around the city, solving puzzles, taking photos of landmarks (obscure or otherwise) and answering questions (trivial or otherwise) in order to accumulate as many points as possible in order to win The Almost Amazing Race.

    What’s in it for you? The chance to get together with three of your friends and do some challenging things you wouldn’t otherwise and, just maybe, win prizes and, most likely, have an amazing time.

    Check out Jack’s videos for a more moving description, plus visit us here very very soon to register.

  • Books, Grimm, Top 10

    Top 10: cats in books

    26.02.09 | Permalink | Comments Off on Top 10: cats in books

    Here’s proof that you can make a list out of anything.

    1. The Cheshire Cat, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll. The Cheshire Cat has had quite an impact on western culture. The trick of disappearing entirely except for your wide grin is pretty neat, as Alice says, “Well! I’ve often seen a cat without a grin… but a grin without a cat! It’s the most curious thing I ever saw in my life!”
    2. The Cat, Coraline, Neil Gaiman. The cat doesn’t have a name (cats don’t need them, apparently). This particular cat is cool; sarcastic (as you imagine cats would be), but a bit scaredy in some ways (as cats are).
    3. book coverCornelius, Peeps, Scott Westerfeld. A cat who can make a fearless Nightwatch peep hunter say “Nummy-time!” while holding an open can of tuna deserves a mention. Plus there are other things about Cornelius (and the other cats in the story) that are cool which I really can’t describe without spoilers.
    4. Lord Gort, Blitzcat, Robert Westall. Blitzcat is told from the perspective of Lord Gort, a girl cat who is caught in Blitz-torn Britain, and travels across country in search of her owner (Geoffrey Wensley of the RAF). There aren’t many other World War II books told from a cat’s perspective.
    5. book coverMango, A Mango-Shaped Space, Wendy Mass. Mia has synesthesia, which sometimes I’d quite like to have but wonder if it might get annoying. Anyway, she names her cat Mango because that’s the colour of his breathing.
    6. Sorenson Carlisle’s cat, The Changeover, Margaret Mahy. Sorry’s a witch, so he has a cat. Sorry’s a lot like a cat himself (this is a stretch): “The cat pushed slickly past her legs and jumped up on to Sorry’s knee where it disappeared, for he was wearing black and his greater blackness swallowed the cat’s lesser one.”
    7. Garfield, Garfield, Jim Davis. Lasagne.
    8. Sampson, The Diary of a Church Mouse, Graham Oakley. You’d think that the sole cat in a story about lots and lots of mice would be having a fab time, but Sampson is frazzled and downtrodden. The first time I found this classic I was supposed to be reading it to my nephew, but spent so much time laughing and not reading out loud that he lost interest and went off to destroy Lego or something and left me in peace to read it to myself.
    9. Scarface Claw, Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy, Lynley Dodd. Forget the dogs, this book is really about Scarface Claw – the whole plot is structured around him and all that.
    10. book coverThe Cat in the Hat, The Cat in the Hat, Dr Seuss. Proof that modish cats can enliven a dull afternoon.

    Normal programming will resume in the next post.

  • Flash games, Simon

    Run, lol, run

    26.02.09 | Permalink | Comments Off on Run, lol, run

    Mirror’s Edge is a new console game that uses the sport of free-running, or parkour. You can play a 2-dimensional platform Flash version of the game – Mirror’s Edge 2D – for free! It’s pretty addictive. I freely admit to playing it all morning.

  • Almost Amazing Race, Facebook, Happenings, Jack, Movies

    Almost Amazing Video Part II

    25.02.09 | Permalink | Comments Off on Almost Amazing Video Part II

    Due either to popular demand, or just the fact that I like playing with iMovie, here is the second ad for The Almost Amazing Race. This one gives away a few more details (possibly about locations) and once again stars Adrienne who is such a good sport for running everywhere I told her to on a very hot day.

    Registrations will be opening very soon. We’ll let you know when on this blog and if you become our fan on facebook, we’ll let you know even sooner.

  • Simon, Wellington

    Everyone likes parades

    24.02.09 | Permalink | 1 Comment

    We’ve a lot of photos from last weekend’s Cuba Street Carnival. The library has a stall set up to promote the Cuba Street Memories Project, which aims to build a history of the street. My great-great-grandfather used to own a part of it; if only he hadn’t sold it in 1860 or thereabouts, I could be rich! Ah well.

    If you’re in any of these photos and wish you weren’t, email us!

  • Fantasy, Simon

    Justified and Ancient

    24.02.09 | Permalink | Comments Off on Justified and Ancient

    Has the lost city of Atlantis been found? No, probably not, but it’s still pretty cool and allows me to link to this remotely related Google Map image of New Zealand perched atop a tectonic plate.

  • Comics, Simon

    Do you want to upsize? *fwip*

    23.02.09 | Permalink | Comments Off on Do you want to upsize? *fwip*

    You may have heard that there’s a global recession on. What can that mean? It’s quite complex, but there are simpler ways of viewing it. However, what’s perhaps more immediately relevant is how it’s affecting comics; apparently Peter Parker lost his job and is now working at McDonalds.

  • Jack, Music, New, Playlists

    New CDs and a list you can play

    21.02.09 | Permalink | Comments Off on New CDs and a list you can play

    We have new music. Yay!

    allmusic.com describes Basshunter as a Swedish computer nerd and his first album called LOL <(^^,)> would seem to indicate that this is accurate. He’s back with Now You’re Gone: The Album for another round of homemade Euro-Dance silliness.

    British pop trio Sugababes have just released a sixth album which must make them one of the most enduring girl groups ever. It’s called Catfights and Spotlights and easily ranks among their best.

    Friendly Fires scored a big hit in the blogosphere last year when their song Paris was remixed by Aeroplane. Now comes their debut album Friendly Fires with more of the same fun dance-rock that shot them to prominence.

    If you’ve turned on a TV at all in the last few weeks you’ll have realised that Fall Out Boy are touring. They’ll be here to support their latest, entitiled Folie a Deux. Fans will love it.

    And lastly, if you need to chill out during these troublesome back to school days, pick up Chillout Sessions XI. Stress relief is practically guaranteed.



  • Grimm

    The Week in Review

    20.02.09 | Permalink | Comments Off on The Week in Review

    For those pressed for time with the misfortune of only being able to read the WCL Teen Blog once a week: this week we did the following;

    Simon and Edna are back next week with new books and stuff. Also, we’re waiting with baited breath for Jack’s next Almost Amazing Race video clip (the first one is here). Apparently it is quite a behemoth and taming it is a mission (taming behemoths: no easy task) but it should be coming to a screen near you next week too.

  • Art, Happenings, Sam

    Show me the Monet!

    20.02.09 | Permalink | 2 Comments

    During the 19th century, a group of French artists decided to rebel.  Instead of faithfully re-creating their subject matter (portrait, landscape, still life) these impressionist painters focused on the overall effects of colour and movement, using unmixed colour and broken strokes.  Their fascination with capturing the momentary and transient effects of sunlight lead them to break with the rigid, studio-based painting traditions and do their paintings en plein air (outdoors, “in the open air”).

    Claude Monet was a founder of the French Impressionist painting movement and its most prolific practitioner.  In fact, the movement derives its name from Monet’s painting, Impression, Sunrise.

    Monet is a pretty big cheese in the art world so it’s truly amazing to be able to get up close and personal with his art without visiting an overseas gallery or art museum. Don’t miss out!  Visit Monet and the Impressionists at Te Papa.  Exhibition ends 17 May.

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