If you have a spare $28k there's a Delorean, a la Back to the Future, for sale in Helensville. Flux capacitor not included (via Trade Me).

Enduring spuds

Laura writes: "My mother is very elderly now, and often gets common words mixed up. Once, while shopping for fruit and veg, she couldn't see her favourite 'Agria Potatoes', so she asked for assistance from the shopkeeper and wondered why he looked aghast when she asked if 'Viagra potatoes' were in season. Another time she was struggling to get pantyhose on, so thought she would give footless tights a go ... so she asked the shop assistant to help her find the 'crutchless pantyhose', only realising her mistake when the young girl looked truly mortified."

Accidental flash


Paul from Devonport writes: "Searching for a park at Long Bay reserve on Sunday afternoon my younger daughter casually remarked 'that man has his towel caught in the car boot'. Our three faces turned to see the poor guy's towel unravelling from his midriff revealing bare buttocks and an unforgettable look of horror as he swiftly reversed to recover both his towel and dignity. My older daughter caused further alarm by her unguarded remark that she had seen 'lots of naked men recently'; it came as a relief to her father that this was because of her involvement in a 'naked vet' calendar shoot."

Pale and interesting

"I was telling my teenage son that when I was in high school I won the speech finals," writes Cheryl. "I had to say my speech on stage in front of the whole school, I told him. I was so nervous beforehand that I felt physically ill and went to the school nurse. She said, 'You are so white!' ... At which point my son chimed in, 'That was pretty racist!"'

The power of Sideswipe

"Thank you Sideswipe!" writes a reader. "A year ago I cut out a story from your column. The writer mentioned being stationed in Japan with Squadron 14 of the RNZAF Peace Corps. My father was also in that same squadron. With a very unusual surname, I tracked the writer down. The two 88-year-old men have since met, compared photo albums, found each other in a 1946 newspaper photo of marching servicemen (five rows apart) and now correspond regularly. A six-month friendship has been forged but sadly my father has since learnt he has not got long to live, but they have shared priceless stories, fond memories and brought two families together."