Sideswipe

A daily look at life's oddities by Ana Samways

Sideswipe: June 17: Storm creates heritage playground

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Bruce Middleton writes: "Last week's storm brought down this 80-year- old, 30m-tall gum tree in Grey Lynn Park. Obligingly, the tree did little damage when it fell, and now lies on a ridge above the main playing field. All weekend, the trunk was crawling with neighbourhood children on their new adventure playground. Rather than spending thousands of dollars to remove the trunk, wouldn't it be great if Auckland Council tidied it up a bit and left it there? Kids would play on it, picnics would be held against it and sports-field spectators would sit on it. The trunk would be a reminder of both Grey Lynn's heritage and the great storm of 2014."

Horseback riding link to trousers
For years, our ancestors draped themselves in tunics and robes until someone decided they were tired of having the wind up their skirts. So, what made two-legged trousers popular? Mental Floss.com explains: A recent archaeological discovery in Xinjiang, China, unearthed two pairs of well-preserved woollen pants estimated to be around 3000 years old - the oldest ever discovered.

This time period corresponds with the rise of "mobile pastoralism" in Central Asia - nomads began moving their herds across the land on horseback. Tunics and robes weren't conducive to long, bumpy rides - and battles - so these ancient people created pants and it is related to the new epoch of horseback riding, mounted warfare and greater mobility.

'Love is' comics innocent products of their time
A reader writes: "Regarding yesterday's item, the 'Love is' comics were devised by LA-based Aucklander Kim Casali. They started as cute drawings expressing her love to her boyfriend in the late 1960s. They belong to the 'in-love' stage of a relationship where sentiment trumps all other considerations. They were products of their time, and are not meant to be evaluated through the eyes of a different generation. Let them be appreciated for the simple message they were intended to be. The 1970 movie Love Story had a line 'love is never having to say you're sorry', a notion since debunked by marriage counsellors. Casali tweaked that into her most famous cartoon 'love is being able to say you're sorry'."


"In Pt Chevalier, we like to keep our clouds nice and orderly," writes Tim of this listing in a real estate email.

Picture this: Berlin stadium becomes a gigantic lounge...

Good read: Journalist Miles O'Brien lost his left arm and wrote about it: "...here are two things you need to know about life after an arm amputation: First, your center of gravity changes dramatically when you are suddenly eight pounds lighter on one side of your body. Second, while my arm may be missing physically, it is there, just as it always has been, in my mind's eye. I can feel every digit. I can even feel the watch that was always strapped to my left wrist. When I tripped, I reached reflexively to break my very real fall with my completely imaginary left hand. My fall was instead broken by my nose, and my nose was broken by my fall." more here...

Read it: Just jokes...

Fashion victims: After a new pair of togs? Try these...

Video: Reddit users try and work out if this clip is staged, but kiwis know it must be because of Leigh Hart aka That Guy aka the Hellers sausage guy. How else is the gag given away? According to this commenter: "the way the cameraman widens the shot just before it happens - he/she clearly makes a space on the right of the scene to give a clear view of the treadmill and the falling guy. The actors do an amazing job of not giving any slip, pure deadpan; the camerawork gives it away though."

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Got a Sideswipe? Send your pictures, links and anecdotes to Ana at ana.samways@nzherald.co.nz

- NZ Herald

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