Monthly Archives: February 2014

Tim Walker on Boozing and Boating

Truth be told, I always thought it was illegal to operate a boat in New Zealand with excess blood alcohol.

Apparently not.

Apparently, it’s quite the contrary. It seems that in order to remain law abiding all you must do is abstain from alcohol while setting up for a day’s boating, while setting off for the day’s boating; then not until you have reached the setting out stage – where the boat is actually floating and surrounded by myriad other boating enthusiasts all in similar states of exuberant care-freedom – can you finally hit the booze.

Phew. What a bloody nightmare those few hours of preparation must be. Just be thankful that once you’ve hit the water you can get as legless, and drive your boat as recklessly as you like – providing you stay within International Maritime Laws, of course.

Let’s be fair though. How many casual boaties are actually familiar with the aforementioned laws? For instance, were you aware that International Maritime Law requires approaching vessels to pass on the right – thus portside to portside? Also, how many private motorboat owners are aware that while they must yield for sailboats, commercial fishing vessels have privilege over both kinds of craft?

The point here is that other than a few diligent boat owners, most skippers like to consider their time on the water recreation – a time where they are not so bound by rules; a time where they can let loose, crack a few beers, go a little bit nuts…

Which brings us back to the issue: boozing and boating. Although this practise is currently legal, it is greatly discouraged. That makes little difference to some weekend boaties. In their dickheaded heads: ‘If it’s not illegal, it must be legal, right?’

Here’s the thing, douchebags. The only reason that it is still legal to imbibe alcohol on a boat is because policing such a law would be nigh impossible.

Personally, boozing and boating is as stupid, as irresponsible; as downright reprehensible as drinking and driving. A drunken sailor is equally, if not more dangerous as a drunkard behind the wheel of a car.

I would sincerely hope that if driving with excess blood alcohol became legal, you would not suddenly deem it to be sensible.



Article by Tim Walker

Edited by I R Seoul

Photography by Richard Pullar


Tim Walker on Hi Vis Cycling

Why, when cycling garb is already awash with gaiety, do some people feel that cyclists should further embellish themselves with High Visibility vests?

What was the reasoning behind that one – they’ve already made us wear hard-hats so obviously Hi Vis gear is the next step..?

Interesting logic, but have we considered the practicality of such a move? High Visibility vests are clumsy, awkward, stiff and horrible. Traditional bike clothing is sleek, smooth, fitting and as previously mentioned, it’s already frightfully convivial.

It doesn’t require a great deal of perspicacity to identify the group behind this Hi Vis craze either, and you can be damn sure they’ve never ridden a bicycle for more than a few hundred metres at a time.

In fact, I’m seriously querying the prospect that this is a visibility issue at all. Seems to me it’s just another example of anti-cyclist propaganda – another way for the ignorant motorists of the nation to throw an additional handful of spite our way. Reminiscent of homophobia, you only hate so much because you want to join us so bad…

Come on, leave it alone, you know we look good as is – perhaps you’re just bitter because you can’t find a cycling shirt big enough to stretch over that beer gut..?


Article by Tim Walker

Edited by B Gotti

Photography by Fleur O Vust

Tim Walker on Boating and Floating

Anyone who doesn’t wear a lifejacket aboard a boat is a dickhead.

That was me showing restraint too; because honestly, of all the boating incidents in New Zealand, the mishap most frequently results in a fatality when the dickhead in question is not wearing a lifejacket. Seemingly the issue lies somewhere within the folds of their arrogant, ill-conceived, dick-headed; veritably moronic mindset: “What do I need a lifejacket for? I’m not a kid you know, I can swim…”

Famous last words maybe..?

Yeah, if by famous you vacuous, which you probably don’t…

These are the facts, dickhead. Whether or not you can swim, being suddenly immersed in frigid water, fully clothed and shod, the surprise alone can be enough to send a gulp or two of liquid death down into your lungs. That’s all it takes. You see, human lungs aren’t set up for processing water. The instant that you swallow/breathe more fluid than you can choke back up in a couple of spasmodic coughs/retches, you’re a dead dickhead.

Furthermore dickhead, have you tried expunging water from your lungs while frantically treading the aforementioned in an effort to not inhale more? Believe me, it’s a mightily arduous task – that’s without taking into account the fact that there’ll likely be waves breaking in your mouth, also that you’re still a fully clothed and shod dickhead.

Another thing, dickhead, don’t for an instant think that because that old lifejacket at the back of the wardrobe – your late grandfather’s RNZAF relic – was good enough to save his life when he was shot down over the Pacific, or because it still fits you, it will be at all beneficial to your 10-year-old son. Adult lifejackets do not fit children. In fact poorly fitting lifejackets are more renowned for killing the wearer than saving them.

So dickhead, ensure that your vessel is equipped with enough lifejackets for every person aboard. Don’t try to be a hero by giving up your own so a child doesn’t go without. If you all end up in the water, fully clothed and shod, you’re gonna need all the buoyancy you can get when you do start being a hero.

Lastly, dickhead, don’t be a dickhead on the water.


Article by Tim Walker

Edited by Richard Head

Photography by Gray T Ocean

Tim Walker’s Simple Pleasures

Everybody has heard the adage and most like to say they believe it too. Some actually do believe it and have gone so far as to incorporate this doctrine in their lives…

Whichever way you perceive it, ‘It’s the simple things in life that matter’.

I used to have expendable cash. I don’t anymore. I used to be that guy who appeared to have ample everything. I’m not anymore. I don’t spend much money at all these days. I’m not tight though. I just don’t have money. I have had to adapt to a new way of life. I have to be prudent with the money I do have. I’m not bothered by that though. I quite enjoy it. I get by. I never was big on wasting money anyway. I never did see the point.

So yes, they can drive their expensive cars, they can wear their flash clothes, dine at their fancy restaurants then perhaps head out to the opera; I’d sooner drive home in my ’92 Primera, change into a check shirt and Stubbies, cook my own bloody meal and spend the night getting better acquainted with an old buddy, Hard Rock.

I once overheard a conversation between two couples trying to outdo each other regarding how much money they had spent during a night out. The victorious duo was pushing $1000. This wasn’t a special occasion, this was just a young, frivolous couple of people, carefree and cashed-up.

These people seemed to have forgotten the happiness and beautiful simplicity of a life before Gainful Career Opportunities teamed up with The Almighty Dollar and possessed the souls of so many; a time where satisfaction was sought not via the swiping of credit cards but through peaceful strolls amid serene landscapes; where amusement was found not within the darkened seats of movie theatres but through sunlit yarns over cups of coffee; where gratification was secured not through a stint of mindless retail therapy followed by an all night bender but through working, earning then rewarding oneself with something worthwhile – something that would stick around a little longer than a bloody hangover.

Alas in this consumer world of one technological breakthrough after the other where chain stores don’t ever seem to sell anything above cost, a great many people appear to have lost sight of the basics, the roots; the rudiments of what make life great.

When did it become acceptable to burn through a weeks’ pay and have nothing to show for it? When did an expensive SUV become the representation of a cohesive family? When did money wasting become a status symbol? When did young people become so damned entitled? When did we stop appreciating the simple pleasures in favour of newfangled crap?

Ultimately, and whether or not you’re like me where the simple things are more or less the only thing given that anything too complex usually results in my shortcomings thus failings, chances are the simple things – the simple pleasures – will be not only more satisfying than their high maintenance counterparts, but more meaningful too.

Embrace them while you can.



Article by Tim Walker

Edited by Taki Tefur

Photography by Grant Tedd



Tim Walker on Signage

We have signs for everything. Signs to tell us what to do; signs to tell us what not to do.

I once saw a sign along a walking track advising that wet conditions might cause the walkway to become ‘treacherous underfoot’ – until then I’d never heard of a perfidious dirt track and I don’t expect I ever will again. On that same route was a timber stile bearing a similar sign except instead of warning users of underfoot treachery, it was cautioning against possible ‘slick surfaces’.

More recently I was witness to a sign stuck to the frosted glass of a fifth storey hotel balcony; it advised against leaning over too far because, ‘you could fall’. There is a sign on most fuel bowsers making sure people understand that petrol is still very much a ‘combustible liquid’. There is a sign on my three-step stepladder notifying me that should I ascend past that first step, I risk ‘toppling’. There is a sign near the spout of my electric jug warning me that should I insert any part of my anatomy, I risk ‘scalding’. There is a sign on my container of Napisan telling me that should I ingest its contents, I risk ‘sudden illness’; there is a similar sign on my rat poison bucket pointing out that should I ingest those contents, I risk ‘sudden death’.

That’s a great many signs depicting a great many risk factors that are either beyond stupid or so basic that anybody in their right mind should be able to see the risk involved – but what about babies, you might say..?

Babies can’t read, I say.

It is therefore a parent’s job to ensure an infant’s safety, and if that parent requires a sign to tell them that scissors cut, points prick, knives slice, petrol goes boom and heat is hot, I reckon we need to consider screening our breeders.

Personally, this provides the ideal opportunity for the implementation of my fabled ‘culling’ programme. If someone thinks it prudent to lean so far over a fifth storey balcony that they fall to their demise, I honestly can’t see it as a huge loss to society. Similarly if somebody strikes a match to see inside their fuel container or scoops Napisan instead of Equal into their morning coffee; ground rat poison instead of ground pepper onto their mashed potato, do we truly believe that it would lower the nation’s collective aptitude?

No. Yet seemingly the intention is to have such a well explained, thoroughly comprehensible and indeed foolproof nation that as the people therein, we can go through life having laid down common sense, relinquished logic; having cast off any responsibility for our actions, shed every modicum of thought process, and still manage to maintain a reasonable level of prosperity.

Gosh, what a world. What a time to be alive – where idiocy is not only celebrated, it’s nurtured.

Those mindless bureaucrats at Occupational Health and Safety are indubitably the force behind this excess of inane illustrations because obviously, the more restricted an organisation can render a particular industry, the more safe its employees will be..? The implied motif is an insult: common workers are simply too daft to realise when they’re jeopardising their own lives, therefore OSH have to tell them…

I guess in a way we’re fortunate to have so much signage; how else would a person know to aim a live firework away from face?

I do have to wonder though if the frequency of workplace mishaps has actually decreased in recent years, given that when the aforementioned variety of misadventure takes place, generally, the offending party is quite aware they are acting dangerously – they sure as hell don’t need a sign to remind them anyway.

How about a sign to tell us to stop making so many Goddamn signs?






Article by Tim Walker

Edited by Rex Banner

Photography by Si N Edge


Tim Walker on Cyclists

They’re a menace on our roads. They’re a danger to both themselves and to motorists. They’re a hindrance to the flow of traffic. They take up too much of the road. They look so bloody stupid in that Spandex…

We also run red lights, we never stop completely at stop signs, we’re often seen riding two or three abreast, we sometimes fail to indicate before we turn, we’re insanely erratic and yes, then there’s those bloody outfits we wear.

I’m a cyclist. Rather an avid one at that.

I have no issue with the haters, I can even sympathise with most of you. I have no problem with the typical motorist expressing his hackneyed opinion – embodiment of slothful ignorance that you are – for the most part I can even understand your viewpoint.

As a fat, lazy man the last thing you want to be doing is embarking on more exercise than is absolutely necessary. That being so, as you while away your Sunday afternoons over a few cool pints of ale at the local with your buddies; given that your office job provides little semblance of ‘Better Work Stories’, the topic of discussion likely turns to, ‘The main issue with those bloody cyclists’ or ‘How we need to get rid of those bloody cyclists’ or ‘The way our roads these days are overrun with those bloody cyclists’ or even ‘How you were almost involved in a traffic incident when your phone call was interrupted by the sudden appearance of one of those bloody cyclists’, or similar.

In your mind the more aspersions you can throw at these energetic lunatics, the less guilty you will feel about living a life of such indolence; therefore the less likely that you will ever feel compelled to get off your own arse and commit to a stint of physical exertion.

On the other hand perhaps you’re not trying to avoid exercise and the reason for your prejudice relates less to sweaty Lycra and more to cyclists’ ostensible arrogance on the road – on your road.

In which case, point noted.

Yes, cyclists do tend to be arrogant and even reckless on the road. That’s probably on account of having so much testosterone coursing through their veins. This is not me talking up the manliness of cyclists, this is merely the body’s natural reaction to prolonged exercise. Despite being among the less sizeable, less controllable and indeed, less robust vehicles on the road, when testosterone couples with adrenalin and begins to flow around our bodies, simply, we feel invincible.

Hence the occasional, apparent death-wish.

As for stop signs, have you seen the calamity involved in detaching, then reattaching our feet to the pedals? No? Fair enough then. I concede, that is unfair. Bicycles are vehicles and they should therefore adhere to the same set of rules as automobiles.

Truth be told, I seldom come to a complete stop in my car either.

Indication on a bicycle can be difficult. Under heavy braking, it can be an impossibility. The right hand operates the rear brake; the left is the front. The front brake has more stopping power but is more unsafe – especially in the wet. If a cyclist approaches a greasy intersection wanting to turn right, he’ll elect to use his rear – or right – brake. You see the problem. I do always make an effort to indicate but often, especially if it’s only a flick of the hand while still holding the handlebar, it is easily missed.

Typically a solo cyclist I am not a supporter of anything wider than single file riding. That said, and despite the ill-conceived instruction that cyclists are to be given at least a metre clearance when passing, personally, there’s nothing the matter with coming within 20 or 30 centimetres of us anyway. It’s when sides of trailers clip my knuckles on the way past…

While I am not an advocate of male leg shaving, I am a user of cycling garb. Hard as it might be to believe, those tight pants and stretchy shirts do amazing things to protect a supple body in the event of a crash. I’d know. My most severe spill occurred on a wet hillside road at over 57kph and had me sliding, tumbling and bouncing for the next 20 metres. Admittedly I came out of that crash with blood oozing, but only in exposed areas and nothing so bad that I was unable to ride the 35kms home.

I think what truly riles a lot tax-paying motorists is the fact that cyclists don’t – pay road tax. I wholeheartedly agree with this sentiment. I don’t believe that cyclists will ever be respected as road users until they start paying for the road on which they ride. Every other road user pays to use the road, so why don’t cyclists?

I have no problem with the concept of bicycle registration. How can we as cyclists expect the road to be accommodating to us, with cycle lanes and the like, if we aren’t prepared to pay for it?



Article by Tim Walker

Edited by Anita Band-Aid

Photography by Moe Tristan, Trey Le