In the between dates - Christmas and New Year - I am not really doing any work. Certainly, I don't intend to bother you all with lots of blogging to not get read until you are back in the office. However, writing is fun, and it is a good habit to keep.
Silly, but fun
Another great way to waste time... dig a hole.
A dreadful wrap up article written in our local rag on the subject of unwanted gifts has to be the worst example of the 'holiday's in review' type of article I have seen in quite a while. The format is almost inevitable, but it doesn't have to be awful. We all give bad gifts from time to time, but these days it is easier to avoid. Online stores operate wish lists precisely to avoid this type of problem, a great example of e-commerce making markets more efficient - you see there is always a financial angle! But if that isn't your thing, communication and forgiveness might be commended.
A much better example of seasonal journalism is the wrap up of the news. TVNZ's peoples choice issues of the year is a great example. Farrar's blog also has some great wrap ups - including a comparison of political insults, comments on the big stories, greetings from a fetching Swede (although sadly not an obvious candidate for financial advice). Link.
Back to the Bad
Of course, this can be taken as an opportunity for people to spin events into a dubious manifesto: I read one piece in the Herald (lifted from the UK's Observer, because the Herald has most of its journos on holiday) which linked Putin's Russia, Blair's Britain, Bush's America, and Berlusconi's Italy all together as 'the worst examples of anglo saxon capitalism' and bemoaned that these should have replaced communism. Hmmm. These are all very different countries, ruled in very different ways, with very different forms of economies - although all would be considered mixed - and very different approaches to redistribution. The only thing they have in common is a statist enterprise, rather than a capitalist one: Iraq.
Spending time with the kids, kayaking, tunning, eating, sailing, swimming, its all good. It's a great way to re-charge. With two extra adults in the house (visitors from Ireland) and no work to do - and the baby sleeping through... well, its puts one in a damn positive frame of mind. Friends keep saying how well we look!
Proving, almost weekly, that predicting weather more than a few days remains almost entirely beyond human science right now, seems to deter people not at all when wishing to make forecasts of global warming, or cooling. Reading a series of past predictions, of which half can be supported by observation on any given day is therefore amusing. Link.
The 'Reason for the Season'
Renewal. Whatever flavour your spirituality, or even if you have no such beliefs, 'renewal' is a great theme for the season. It cheerfully covers all the bases. With Christmas in New Zealand co-inciding with our long summer break, its all about renewal. Fresh ideas, re-charged batteries, and new plans for the New Year. So, enjoy your break, renew, and I wish you all the best for the New Year. We shall enjoy the New Year on 'Tiger Time' at the Auckland Zoo (a sensible 9pm countdown the kids can enjoy) and I shall hopefully be up in time for a run at dawn on 1 January.