There must be an election coming up as the incessant groans of the discontents such as Vandervis and Smith are in full flight once again in the letter to the editors.

None would be surprised by me taking the bait and having my own little grumble about a certain Mr Smith.

It seems the fellow has strong objections to the suggestion the Dunedin tempt the Edinburgh Tattoo away, or hold our own here in Dunedin.

Firstly let’s correct some blatant errors. The Scots did not give us the word Daft like he claimed.

“daft O.E. gedæfte “gentle, becoming,” from P.Gmc. *gadaftjaz. Sense progression from “mildness” to “dullness” (14c.) to “foolish” (15c.) to “crazy” (1536), probably influenced by analogy with daffe “halfwit.”

(source, But this was just one of many that state the word cones from Old English. And if you are a geek like me and have read the Story of English and are currently watching that brilliant series by Melvin Bragg based on the book, you will appreciate that Old English is not Scots or Pictish.

The second blatant error is to again use that tired and boring Pork Pie, that this is a ‘Plastic Tent’.

That aside, I agree that it would not be the same setting as the majestic Edinburgh Castle. But considering that ‘the lone piper’ played splendidly from the roof of Carisbrook some years back for an All Black test. It had the same effect on me, spine tingling and tear evoking. If it was good enough to stick the piper on the roof…

The rest of his rant is so pathetic as to actually require a warm fire tonight and this page us the first I will crumple up.

Yes fireworks can and have been used successfully in indoor arenas, I have witnessed it first hand – without a single sprinkler going off.

Why will Howitzers going off in the FB stadium render the audience deaf but not at Edinburgh? Sorry sunshine if there are pyrotechnics (not the main point of the event) they will not harm the fuel installation many hundreds of metres away – more absolute bollocks!

Further if it was good enough for the ordinance to be man(or woman)handled at Westpac Stadium in 2000 when it was the first place on the world to lure the event away from Edinburgh Castle, then it will be good enough here in Dunedin – sans flagstones.

As I said I’ve heard some utter tripe from Mr Smith, and the ODT have been more than obliging in publishing his rubbish, this however is right up there.

As stated if it was good enough for that northern ‘Edinburgh of the South’ to host the Edinburgh Military Tattoo, I would say, YES it is well within the realms of possibility that we host it, or even a South Pacific version more appropriately.

{sorry if there are offending grammatical errors, I’m on the go with the iPhone}.



Filed under Hot air, Inspiration, Politics

9 responses to “Tattoo

  1. Richard

    Having attended the Edinburgh Tattoo in 1992, I can accord with many – if not all – of the thoughts expressed about its setting and emotion … especially for those of us having a Scots heritage!

    Whether one is to be staged in the Forsyth Barr Stadium as part of its opening programme or not is obviously still to be determined. I know nothing more about it than that.

    What I do know, however, is that the anti-stadium critics who have rushed to judgement and say “it can’t be done”, conveniently ignore or forget the hugely impressive TATTOO that was produced by Ross Johnston for Otago’s 150th Celebrations and staged at Carisbrook, complete with its own very impressive ‘castle’ (a creative use of shipping containers) etc. etc.

    It did not try to be a copy of Edinburgh, how could it! It was a local production, created by locals, staged by locals and resoundingly successful. I was Chairman of the 150th Scottish Week Committee and can testify to that. But do not take my word for it! The Lord Provost of Edinburgh (Lord Mayor), Eric Gilligan and his Chief Executive were present and they are on record as saying so.

    Och Aye!

  2. Fliss

    I have been trying to think up a catchy nickname for the stadium but note you have already shortened it to FB! he he…

    I was thinking something along the lines of ‘The Dunny’.

  3. meg55

    But Richard, it just wouldn’t be the same with a roof over it. Holding the farmers’ market in the stadium would be similar. It would certainly solve the market’s overcrowding problem for good and all. I’m sure attendance numbers would drop. What is now a real treat on a Saturday morning, where you can enjoy the atmosphere of Dunedin’s heritage buildings and the view of Mt Cargill in the distance, would become a quick dash into a characterless barn to get the weekly staples. Why would you want to linger? Same with the Tattoo. What would the atmosphere be like, under cover? At least at Carisbrook you can see the sky.

    • Elizabeth

      The farmers market would NEVER arrive on the pitch in the stadium. Any market that might arrive at the stadium needs a hard surface for trucks. Think practically.

  4. David

    Fliss – re naming.

    I thought (continuing the Caketin line) that The Lunchbox or The Breadbin may be frontrunners

  5. Yeah it would be a real shame to sit in a spacious atmosphere, with possibly a stage and performers on it.

    Perhaps it’s just me, but I have never taken in the heritage buildings nor Mt Cargill, just the mad dash between being squashed by too many people and or the rain drops tends to make me a fair weather Farmers Market attendee.

    Funny they said the same thing about the Farmers Market in Richmond, London when it found premises in a converted warehouse in the vicinity. When in London last I managed to get to the market, and WOW what a great place and atmosphere (not to mention the 100+ cheeses on offer).

    Perhaps – just perhaps there will be as many new visitors to the market as there will be drop offs?

    • Elizabeth

      Paul – the farmers market does canvass sites as part of its looking forward, covered and uncovered – the current site has little overheads attached, and as you know some of the produce for sale is already pricey which customers should be more alert to questioning…start raising the site fees (if relocated) and will the customers wear even higher prices for the produce…there are some business decisions that require balancing if the farmers market is to stick honestly to its stated mission and objectives which are designed to deliver the returns to the growers and producers rather than middle people such as might be DCC or CST or whoever.

  6. David

    Paul – the turf experts said there shouldn’t be any other events on the pitch in winter.

    It comes back to the fact that it’s a rugby stadium, and everything else will be pushed aside for the priority – rugby.

  7. meg55

    Yes it would be a real shame from my point of view, Paul. We obviously go to the market for quite different reasons. I hate being squashed, but I solve that by going early.

    Performers on a stage wouldn’t attract me nearly as much as King Leo and Paul with his bass, Max the violinist, the guy with the Dutch bagpipes and various inspiring young musicians who often have me spellbound. I appreciate being able watch them play from close quarters, and being able to share a few words in between numbers. You would lose all that wonderful intimacy if they were on a stage.

    The farmers market AT THE RAILWAY STATION is one of the best things about living in Dunedin, for which we can all thank your co-editor. It will be relocated to the stadium over my dead body.

    But as Elizabeth says, it would be totally impractical on a grassed surface and it was mischievous of the CST to even suggest anyone was seriously considering it. I was just making a point about atmosphere.

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