Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Attractive Pedestrians Are Bad For Your Health!

The survey proves what we all knew - that good-looking pedestrians are a distraction for kiwi drivers!
A new survey has also found one in five NZers is still texting while driving, despite this being illegal.
The Drivers Index Survey (which asked 1,000 regular NZ drivers 18yrs+ to rate 12 distractions) found nearly half of younger drivers 18-24 break the texting law.
20% of drivers said people outside the car were also a major problem, with 25% of men admitting they're likely to find attractive pedestrians a distraction than women do.
So here's the AA's definitive Top Ten Driver Distractions:
1st equal: Texting, and reading a newspaper or magazine
2. Applying make-up, shaving or other personal grooming
3. Talking on a mobile phone WITHOUT a hands-free kit
4. Changing the radio/iPod/MP3 player
5. Eating while driving
6. Children in the car
7th equal: Talking on a mobile phone WITH a hands-free kit, and using GPS or other navigation system
8. Billboards /outdoor advertising
9. People outside the car
10. Passenger in the car (sheep were not mentioned!)

But NZers are not alone - up to a million UK drivers crash their cars while perving at pedestrians.
Distracted Brit motorists cause 921,840 crashes per year (roughly 2,500 per day!)- with many of these checking out sexy people.
Not surprisingly, men are the worst offenders in the UK as well. 60% admitted to being distracted by attractive women. 12% of women said an attractive man would divert their gaze from the road.
And it's not just the sight of genetically-lucky people: even the sight of a billboard with a pretty lady or bloke can be an issue - 21% admitted it! You may recall about 10yrs back in Auckland, the gridlock-causing billboard of the Elle McPherson Intimates Collection, unveiled by two studs dressed only in boxers?!!!
This behaviour gets worse in summer when there's more flesh on display. Maybe manufacturers need to install cold showers in cars!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Changes To Our Change

Put on your sunnies: New Zealand's new banknotes bring more splash when you flash your cash.
They're so bright they even have their own website to promote 'em.
I can imagine many people may initially consider them as excessively vivid forgeries!
Our main themes remain the same, but the colours are brighter with more security features. Plus there's some PC tokenism, with the maori name for New Zealand and the Reserve Bank appearing for the first time.
It's our first banknote upgrade since 1999 (when we switched from paper notes to polymer ones printed by Australia). The newies will be made in Canada for five years. So...good day, eh!
New notes for old...
With about 148 million banknotes in circulation (= NZ$4.7 billion), the oldies will be phased out as they're returned to the Reserve Bank. Target date for release of the new $5 and $10 is Oct.2015, with the $20, $50 and $100 notes released in April 2016. Both the new and current notes will circulate together, and of course both will be legal tender.
On our current notes are Edmund Hillary, explorer ($5/orange); Kate Sheppard, suffragette ($10/blue); The Queen ($20/green); Apirana Ngata, maori politician ($50, purple); Ernest Rutherford, physicist ($100, red)...with various birds, plants and other pretty pics to link into the themes.
But the new images appear to have been "tweeked". Hillary looks even more manly and rugged - is that possible?! - Ngata and Rutherford look 'smoother' (though I still couldn't identify them if my life depended on it!), Sheppard looks softer and more feminine (probably anathema to her values!), but the Queen...sorry, darls, the artists have done you no favours!
Interesting that these designs have been assessed by a range of folk (obviously security experts, equipment manufacturers etc) but also - get this - design, history and cultural experts, "to ensure they reflect NZ's culture and history"! Perhaps there's a subtle agenda by those experts: ease in some maori words, make a fool of the monarchy, nudge us towards PM John Key's 'Banana Republic' dream...?
Well, at least we haven't gone as far as THIS suggestion (below)...
Oh, my Lorde!!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Frog In A Blender

How does the old joke go?
Q: What's green and wizzes round and round very fast?
A: A frog in a blender!
Peruvians recommend freshly-blended FROGS as a cure for stress and
special of the day
low sex drives!
Villagers in the Andes have a traditional cure-all that they use to treat everything from a slow sex drive and high stress levels, to asthma and bronchitis: blended frog juice. Many locals living in Peru and Bolivia believe it's the ultimate fix for almost any illness.
The most popular recipe calls for the use of whole frogs, which are beaten to death and skinned before being put into the blender. Many local food vendors then add a number of other healthy ingredients, such as carrots, Peruvian maca root and honey, before blending the mixture until it is smooth. The finished product is usually light green in colour and is served to customers right there on the spot.
"Jump, Forrest, JUMP!"
The Medical College of Lima reports there is no scientific evidence that frog juice is a cure for anything, despite its continuing popularity within Andean culture.
And unfortunately, the juice requires the use of one specific type of frog... thetelmatobius culeus, from remote Lake Titicaca, a species that's listed as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.