Steve Braunias' Secret Diary of Andrew Little

Labour Party leader Andrew Little. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Labour Party leader Andrew Little. Photo / Mark Mitchell


Monday caucus. I was the first one to arrive because I wanted to get some thoughts together, but the debris from Friday drinks hadn't been cleared away, so I rolled up my sleeves and got to work.

First I took away the empty wine bottles and stacked them in the recycle bin in the kitchen.

There were a few bottles with a bit of wine still in them, and I poured out most of them but two still smelled okay, so I found screwtops and put them in the fridge.

But the fridge hadn't been cleaned in a while, so I rolled up my sleeves and got to work. I threw out the deteriorated remains of cans of tomatoes, lentils, and beans, and then washed the cans and stacked them on top of the wine bottles in the recycle bin.

Then I took everything out of the fridge and washed the glass panels under the hot tap, and put them back again, and reordered the contents.

Two plastic bottles of trim milk and one of full milk had gone off. I poured them out, and stacked the bottles on top of the cans in the recycle bin.

I was about to set to work on the drinks table when I noticed the stove top hadn't been cleaned for a while, so I rolled up my sleeves and got to work.

The inside of the oven was pretty bad, too. I turned it on to get it warm and when I finished cleaning the stove top, I sprayed the oven with Easy-Off.

I didn't think it would take long to scrub down the drinks table, but there were quite a few red wine stain rings, so I rolled up my sleeves and got to work.

I mixed some baking soda and oil together, and rubbed it on the stain in the direction of the grain.

I let it sit there and used the time to wipe down the oven. That required pretty much an entire roll of Earthcare paper towels.

Caucus started file in. "What's that smell?" they asked.

"It's the Easy-Off," I said.


The latest One News-Colmar Brunton poll is due today. I expect a pretty good showing for myself as well as the party in the wake of last week's 18-hour debate on housing which took advantage of a procedural blunder in National's attempt to extend the Special Housing Areas legislation under urgency.

My speech on part two clause one of the housing amendment bills was especially striking.


The latest One News-Colmar Brunton poll was bogus.

There have been two other recent polls I've seen that have shown completely different results.

And there was one published two or three weeks ago that was even better than our internal polling.

I can't quite recall where I saw it published. I saw one floating around my office.


It's around here somewhere.


Friday drinks.

I stayed behind afterwards to clear up the debris and save time on Monday morning, so I rolled up my sleeves and got to work.

I checked the oven. Pretty good. The stove top only needed a bit of a wipe, and the fridge looked good as well, although there was a nasty spill from an open can of tomatoes.

I scooped up some of the pulp and put it back in the can, because it was still fresh.

I remembered I hadn't checked the freezer compartment. I opened it up and had a look. Dear, oh dear.

It was getting onto midnight when I finally had a chance to clear away the empty wine bottles. But there wasn't any room for them in the recycling bin.

It was already overflowing from Monday morning, and no one had thought to take it away.

- NZ Herald

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