The surefire way to kill a party is to have a group of old codgers talking about it.

Hearing John Key and Murray McCully talking about "party central" is like listening to a parent trying to speak in the kids' lingo.

It's uncomfortable and you feel embarrassed for them. Just as embarrassing is the wrangle over Queen's Wharf and the argument over who's going to foot the bill for its development and the debate over exactly what form that development might take.

Mind you, this sort of hapless debacle was always going to be an absolute certainty - as sure a thing as the prediction that the fan base will be a dismal failure.

Why, if you are an international rugby fan, would you leave Eden Park and hop on a train, eschewing the delights of Kingsland's cafes, going directly past the thriving night life of Ponsonby and taking a right on to a bleak windswept wharf instead of a left to the maelstrom that is the Viaduct?

Most revellers don't want to be stuck in one place, miles from anywhere. They like to go from bar to bar, soaking up the atmosphere and the charms of the different places. Well, from what I understand and from what I remember. It's years since I've been out after dark.

What I know for sure is that if I was looking to have a good time, a contrived party place on Queen's Wharf, decked out like the school hall for the fourth form social, would not be my first port of call.

Setting up a tacky venue away from the rest of the city and having John Key calling out to the peeps that the party is going down over here is just another tragic failure on the part of our nation's, and our city's, leaders to get things right.