Monthly Archives: May 2016

Tim Walker’s Childless

Since reading the book ‘When the Bough Breaks’ in 2008, by Jonathan Kellerman, I have entertained a strong interest in the circumstance recognised by child welfare organisations as SIDS…

Coined in the 80s Sudden Infant Death Syndrome was a term used to explain away the supposed asphyxiation of a child, due to improper sleeping habits.

…The aforementioned, largely factual, account was written more in bullet points than prose – indicative of Kellerman’s former career in journalism – making it rather easy to read yet particularly difficult to enjoy; nevertheless I did make it to the end, having made a few massive revelations along the way about mankind and its associated motives.

As I recall, When the Bough Breaks recounted the tale of a woman and her newborn child. The woman starts off as a wonderful and doting mother, that is, until the child becomes too difficult for her to manage.

One day, in a fit of exasperation, she uses a pillow to smother her screaming child…

After reading this book I started to think: what if this is not as uncommon as we think? I have therefore, since that time in 2008, been conducting my own casual research into the topic.

…Naturally the woman claimed she had entered the room to find her baby dead. It was later established that the infant’s prone sleeping position had caused it to suffocate on its own pillow; thus from that baby’s death, SIDS was born…

Over the years I did find a few cases of children as old as three years supposedly dying in this manner, yet I have always been incredulous.

…Mothers across the world were now being vehemently instructed to swaddle babies and put them to bed in a strictly supine position to ensure unimpeded airways…

It just seemed too convenient: particularly when a number of these mothers had previously admitted to difficulties in dealing with their infant’s quarrelsome temperament; then one morning finding their child dead from this apparent SIDS..?

…In the book, this factual account, some time later, this mother fell pregnant again…

As well as the generation of horrifically misshapen skulls this new ‘SIDS’ thing was delivering unto the world I had other issues with it: it was simply impossible for me to accept that any infant of over a few years old could be such a deep sleeper, or indeed would not possess the ability to rouse itself, that it might allow itself to suffocate on its own pillow.

…In the book, this factual account, some time after being born, this second child also fell victim to SIDS…

I then discovered that the human body has an inbuilt, very clever anti-asphyxiation mechanism.

…In this book, this factual account, some time later, this mother fell pregnant again…

I had always found it amazing that a person could lie face-down in a pool of water for up to half a minute and not drown – I assumed that because most people take some sort of involuntarily breath every few seconds, this pattern would continue; yet while I am aware it is not impossible for a drunkard to choke on their own vomit, if an unconscious body lies face down in a pool of water the brain somehow knows to not breathe until totally necessary.

…In this book, this factual account, some time after being born, this third child also fell victim to SIDS…

Of course when that body does breathe, if it’s still face-down in water, it will assuredly drown, but the point is that if a human body can avoid an unforced death, generally, it will do just that.

…In this book, this factual account, some time later, I’m fairly certain she fell pregnant again; I think this woman was the victim of ‘SIDS’ four or five times, the eldest child I believe being around four years old, before somebody finally caught her out – during that time of course there being no clear way to distinguish ‘accidental death by asphyxiation’ from ‘murder from asphyxiation’.

This woman was finally diagnosed with severe postnatal depression and subsequently incarcerated, thereby putting an end to her deadly cycle.

Makes me wonder how many other women during the 80s and 90s claimed SIDS after doing the very same thing.

Fortunately mothers these days are much better supported throughout their child’s formative years; also a great deal more is understood about child welfare, so I think ‘the fable of SIDS’ is largely a problem of yesteryear.



Article by Tim Walker

Edited by Lizzie Borden

Photography by Sid Black



Tim Walker’s Fustigator XV


I am better than dirt yet not nearly as good as concrete.

I am heavy for my size yet comprise no fat.

I am often smooth yet can still injure with competency.

I am sometimes rough yet would still make a fine pet.

I am employed in the resurfacing of infrastructure yet pay no tax.

I am from a place that is the pits yet will stay wherever I am put.

I am known in collective form as adult chickenpox yet I am immune.

I am used in a past washing process yet denim has since moved on.

I am known in past tense as an affect of cannabis yet do not smoke.

I am larger than that Flintstone baby yet smaller than the best music.

I am a fate which sometimes befalls crows in clean Australian operas.

I am not to be thrown inside a glasshouse yet outside still break glass.








Last edition’s Fustigator: Brassiere

Tim Walker’s Crisis

According to a recent concession from Prime Minister John Key Auckland’s housing situation has officially gained the status of a, ‘matter of national significance’.

Reportedly the Auckland region is currently 50 thousand houses short of demand and in order for this ‘crisis’ to be downscaled to some sort of ‘manageable issue’, Auckland would need to build close to 13 thousand houses during the next year alone.

Personally, housing JAFAs isn’t the true issue: once they’re located in Auckland, generally, Auckland folk want to be able to get around; in order for these folk to get around, generally, they need a functioning means of transportation; for many Aucklanders this transportation takes the form of a private car, therefore suitable and indeed expansive roadways become an additional but indeed necessary maintenance cost – a bill which as rookie ratepayers these newly situated JAFAs do their best to carry – yet even with the burgeoning number of Auckland homeowners, even after the annual cost of Auckland rates has become tantamount to a generous house deposit in Invercargill, this cost cannot be absorbed by Auckland alone…

Mayor of Auckland Super City Len Brown proposed implementing a road tax to achieve just this variety of revenue-gathering; the unsurprising response around Auckland was resoundingly downbeat.

…Fortunately there’s a whole other nation of benevolent Kiwis outside Auckland who, albeit grudgingly, agree to pay higher fuel costs and road taxes to see that Auckland is able to flourish with continued gusto.

It seems that even with all our tax breaks, tax havens and, to a lesser extent, tax avoidance and tax evasion, Auckland region is still struggling to find its tax dollars.



Article by Tim Walker

Edited by Jeff Orr

Photography by Tess Pier

Tim Walker’s Fustigator XIV


I am unpalatable yet hold great appeal nonetheless.

I am usually unnoticed yet invariably supportive.

I am much more of an under than I am an over.

I am typically convivial yet always have a task at hand.

I am able to be abbreviated and indeed generally am.

I am the carrier of valuable cargo yet am often scanty.

I am one of several yet there is always a favourite.

I am of delicate construction yet am always robust.

I am part of a set yet separation occurs frequently.

I am worn by Jane yet I am admired by John.

I am the bearer of straps known to catch men out.

I am rarely witnessed publicly yet often desired privately.

I am named like a French restaurant yet am in fact American.

I am named also like an outdoor heater and am called hot.








Last edition’s Fustigator: Snow

Tim Walker’s Barrier

New Zealand motorcyclists were out in numbers today, protesting the use of wire rope roadside barriers.

The bikies claim that when they slide into these wire ropes they have a ‘cheese-slicer’ effect on their bodies…

Clearly the New Zealand Transport Authority has put their minds together to come up with this cost effective alternative to solid, concrete or steel, blockades but according to 100 protesting motorcycle enthusiasts, the wire ropes have to go.

…Begging the  question: what the hell are so many motorcyclists doing ‘sliding into’ these barriers?

Motorbike registration fees are already exorbitant beyond belief to cover disproportionate ACC costs resulting from motorcycle mishaps, thus one would expect the last thing the aforementioned riders would accept is an additional fee to cover the additional cost of additional roadway infrastructure.

One such motorcycle enthusiast was heard remarking: “I had a mate die when he hit one of those wire barrier things – like he was fine when he hit the ground and when he was sliding across the road and that but then he hit those wire ropes and they just cut him in two.”

The solution seems basic enough: given the presumed distaste for even higher motorcycle registration costs at the hand of New Zealand’s Land Transport sector, I encourage bike riders to either put a greater effort into staying atop their seats when they ride their machines or, simply, stop complaining.

Like any traffic incident – you crash, you’re likely to get hurt.



Article by Tim Walker

Edited by Y R Rope

Photography by Barry R Hurts

Tim Walker’s Fustigator XIII


I am by nature cold yet can be a source of enjoyment.

I am loved by children yet most adults are indifferent.

I am a contributor to the construction of monuments.

I am akin to an angel yet have no feminine attributes.

I am said to inspire awe yet I also inspire destruction.

I am responsible for loss of limbs yet am unmoving.

I am inside every person yet not in my current form.

I am harmless enough yet sometimes become a projectile.

I am renowned for falling down yet never do I get back up.

I am seen mainly in the winter yet occasionally I do spring.

I am slang for cocaine yet hold no joyous surprises myself.








Last edition’s Fustigator: Diamond

Tim Walker’s Thug II

Unbelievable to think that in this modern age petty crime in New Zealand – particularly Auckland – is still so prolific.

A number of small businesses have recently been overthrown by groups of hoodie-wearing thugs brandishing nothing but a feeble array of basic yard tools in what can only be described as senseless, stupid and spineless acts of treachery…

Yeah, hard to believe that kind of thing’s still going down.

…Which in a way is exactly what I just said, in my opening – but here’s the thing: the victims of these gutless attacks, those hard-working dairy and liquor store owners, who are in fact sometimes being burgled during daylight hours by these jumped-up drop-kicks, targeting cash, cigarettes, or alcohol; usually resulting in a shopkeeper or clerk’s injury, generally, are being robbed/assaulted by those same people who like so very much to complain about the way the foreigners are ruining this country…

Yeah I know, bloody foreigners eh, taking all our jobs and that.

…No but do you not see? It’s those kinds of pillocks who are the main issue; those losers who think they can avoid taking responsibility for their own lack of ambition, for their own failings, or explain away the reasons for their many shortcomings in life, justify their lifetime’s worth of wrongdoing, by accusing New Zealand’s foreign population of standing in their way, accuse them of stealing their opportunities…

They do though eh, I mean, just about every dairy up north is run by Indians.

…That’s right, they are, just like the way most fish ‘n chip shops, or motels in the south are run by Asians, but guess why that is..?

I dunno, ‘cause they like stealing all our jobs..?

Seriously..? It’s because they are willing to do the work, plain and simple; just like Filipino dairy workers…

Oh yeah, and as well as them there’s those ones that work on the farms, they take our jobs too.

…Yes, also those ones – tell me though, would you be willing to work from before dawn each day on a dairy farm?

Oh, nah, I’d get a real job eh.

You mean like working behind a counter, say, in a dairy..?

Nah man, that’s like slave labouring, nah I mean a real job, like in an office and that.

Oh nice one, you think you’re qualified to work in an office then?

Oh, prob’ly not, oh, reckon I’d pick it up though eh.

Right, so until then, education, perhaps..?

Nah, not really into school eh.

So how do you hope to learn the skills for work without education?

Oh you know, heaps o’ jobs don’t needs skills.

That’s true, but they’re usually hard work, too.

Oh, not scared of a little hard work eh.

But school’s too hard for you..?

School blows man.

I concur, but what about that job?

Oh, I dunno, s’pose I’d get some cash somehow eh.


Yeah, you know, somehow



Article by Tim Walker

Edited by Dick Added

Photography by Thea Garry

Tim Walker’s Fustigator XII


I am one of the world’s oldest yet most beautiful entities.

I am hard as nails yet can quickly melt a woman’s heart.

I am extremely valuable yet some refuse to accept me.

I am of a rough appearance until work has done on my façade.

I am the result of pressure yet my touch provides immediate relief.

I am joyous to be around yet procurement may have caused great pain.

I am of the Latin adamas yet my displayers are often far from adamant.

I am a usual source of delight yet sometimes great dismay.

I am without eyes yet if I could look my stare would cut through glass.

I am not a square yet I frequently sit in a ring.








Last edition’s Fustigator: Stereo

Tim Walker’s Protesting VII

As Prime Minister John Key heroically pushes through a $2 billion free-trade deal with India, an ungrateful country waits.

There is also talk of including France in the above negotiations and all this, only months after securing a multibillion dollar trade deal with China and still, most people are against this bloody TPP thing.

Correction: most have no idea of this TPP thing – they know not what it is, what it would, or indeed what it will mean and if I know people, uncertainty indubitably breeds negativity.

Mr Key is out there, ultimately creating more jobs for the people of New Zealand and what are these people of New Zealand doing? Why they’re too busy bitching and moaning to notice, protesting about things they don’t understand while the rest of us pay the bills to keep the country afloat.

The people told our Government there was a job shortage (when perhaps the real shortage was in diligence or work ethic); through the Trans Pacific Partnership agreement he replied, increasing New Zealand’s trading ability with the rest of the world thereby increasing national productivity thus requirement for employment.

Gosh, poor old Uncle John must become terribly exasperated though when, through protest, New Zealand’s resident contingency of malcontents instruct him he needs to do this to improve that, then when he does this in an attempt to improve that, those very protesters instruct him that he can’t do this in his attempt to do that because that’s in breach of their rights so now their sovereignty is at stake or something else that they say without really understanding the words tumbling from betwixt their lips but which they believe if they arrange in some sort of rhyming format and yell into the sky with enough people standing idly by, they might just make a difference.

Welcome to New Zealand, the land with so little to worry about our protesters only complaints are nonsensical triviality.

Proud of you, Uncle John, bang up job, Sir.



Article by Tim Walker

Edited by Bish A Moon

Photography by Nin Sun Sickle