Do the Famine!

Sponsor me for the Famine!The 40 Hour Famine is on this weekend, so I’m gonna join with my youth group and do the whole 40 hours without food and without technology. No eating, internet, phone, ipod, or psp. I might watch a movie, or read a book or three. And I might take some photos with my digital camera for proof.

And hey, you can help! I need people to sponsor me to make it all worthwhile. This year’s famine is about stopping child labour. For every $300 raised through the famine, World Vision will help a family in India to start a business so they can support themselves without needing their children to work in bonded labour.

And I’ve discovered that you can even sponsor me online! World Vision have set up a system that lets Faminers register their famine books online and get people to sponsor them online! It’s pretty neat.

So you can go pledge your sponsorship of me here:

Even if you only give NZD$2, that little part will go towards helping children from more than twelve countries worldwide. $10 will provide a family of five with a health checkup and basic medical supplies in India. $150 will provide seeds for one Tanzania primary school so they can provide daily meals for their students for a year!

It all adds up! Sponsor me and help change the world!

Fat Freddy’s Drop — Roady video coming soon!

My friend Paul asked me if I knew who Fat Freddy’s Drop was, because he didn’t (you’re under a rock, mate), and because that night he [had the honour of] working on the new Fat Freddy’s Drop music video for their groovy track Roady, filmed here in Wellington on the infamous Cuba St.

If you are like Paul and don’t know who Fat Freddy’s Drop are, climb out from under your rock and listen to their tracks! FFD are an independant Wellington dub reggae group who won all the major awards at the last New Zealand Music Awards. You’ve probably heard “Wandering Eye” on the radio without knowing who it was. Pick up their album or get their tracks from the iTMS.

So I got Paul to take my copy of their album Based on a True Story along and get it signed by the group. He did, he is some kind of legend ๐Ÿ˜€ And Fat Freddy’s are awesome for signing it too! Cheers guys, I don’t need to tell you how awesome you are!

I got a text this morning saying they were still in town, and if I wanted, I could come pick up my CD and maybe meet some of the group ๐Ÿ™‚ So I did. I wish I had a bit more to say and ask, but at that hour in the morning, I was just waking up, and they were about ready to go to bed after filming all night.

Anyway, the music video is due out in a few months or something, so keep your eyes peeled!

Loose Ends

So, before I head off to Sydney two nights from now, I figured I’d post about a few loose ends I haven’t posted much detail about.

I’m working part time at now, and tomorrow is my last day at the DRC. I love working at 3months: the attitude of the workplace is relaxed but focused; everyone is enjoying their work. I start full time this Monday (3rd Oct). They’ve already got me working on a fun but rushed PHP project. I was working three days a week at DRC, and Wednesday and Thursday at 3months.

I’m so glad I’m not working two part time daytime jobs any more — three Mondays a week is lethal to your mind. I personally believe in sticking your focus to one a project a week at work, using the natural downtime on the fringes of the weekend: use Friday to ‘swap to disk’ for the weekend, and Monday to load the week’s project back into memory. The brain isn’t too good at swapping.

3months also issued me a laptop as my main work computer. This is awesome because I’ll be able to blog from the conference, and maybe even tap into the subconciousness of the lecture attendees, AKA the conference IRC room. Oh, and maybe do some work… ๐Ÿ™‚

My mum is off to Brisbane to live with her new squeeze. She’s flying out of Palmerston North on the 15th, so I’ll be up there to see her off. She is saving up for my brother Stuart and I to visit her for Christmas. Sydney will my first overseas experience, so I’m looking forward to following it up quickly with a visit to Brisbane.

Speaking of holidays, I’m off to see the Guru, the wonderful Guru of Bob, erm, GuruBob down in Mosgiel (near Dunedin) for New Years: Bob has offered for me to crash at his place for a few days. I’ve never been more south than Christchurch, so seeing some of Otago with a born-and-bred Dunedinite’s point of view sounds like fun ๐Ÿ™‚ Maybe even see Bob fly his new RC Plane…

So yeah, my next post will probably be in Sydney! I’m taking my camera, and will be trying to find buildings from The Matrix on Saturday… w00ta! (is that Australian for “w00t”…? ๐Ÿ˜‰ )

Looking forward to Tax Cuts this election?

If you’re a New Zealander like me, you’ll probably know that there’s an election coming up, and good old Don Brash of the National Party, like so many politicians at election time, is advocating tax cuts. Apparently the Government can afford it, assuming they get rid of some of the less-important functions of the government.

Public Address have put together a handy little tax break calculator! You enter your salary, and punch in the percentages of tax you want to pay, and it tells you how much money per week you’ll be scoring. w00t! NZD$202 extra a week ๐Ÿ˜€

However, it goes forward to explain how much money it’ll need to recoup from giving the tax break to the nation. For me it was NZD$3,935 Millionbut luckily it goes on to offer suggestions of things it could get rid of, you know, to keep the government running smoothly. You know, the controversial things, like hip-hop tours, woman’s affairs, artist’s dole.

For example: Getting rid of the Wananga O Aotearoa? Sure, but what about all the students? — they’ll still be interested in tertiary education — onto student loans they go…
Largest 1-year funding the Wananga ever recieved: $239 Million
Cost of a third of ex-Wananga students going elsewhere: $220 Million
Net Money Recovered: NZD$19 Million.
Still to Recover: NZD$3,916 Million.

Ooo big savings. NOT.

Seriously, I think I can safely assume that National is unable to give a significant tax break. As the fellows at Public Address said:

There’s a word for that, and it’s nothing so prim as “baloney.”

For the record, I’m happy with how I’m being taxed. Maybe the rich should be taxed more, and the poor taxed less. What do you think?