Staying tax-free while parked at The Hub, Botany.

Shaky selling point

A Kapiti real estate listing riffs of the recent seismic activity. Under the heading Off The Richter, the copy reads ... "It's no wonder the ground is shaking, and the epicentre is Winara Avenue! A property with fresh paint inside and out, pristine carpet, new curtains, as well as sea and island views and a bonus self-contained flat will cause a tremor or two from the high magnitude of people coming to view it! No doubt there will be aftershocks too! (shock after you come and see the property for yourself)."

We didn't mean to offend, swears Book A Bach


New Zealanders are not ready for the creative use of the f-word. In Book A Bach's August newsletter, the email subject line read: "Three 'F'ing good reasons to go away ..." Several Sideswipe readers were aghast, but the holiday house rental service was quick to kowtow: "We've realised we well and truly overstepped the line with our newsletter's subject title. We would like to whole-heartedly apologise to you if you were offended. The 'F's we were referring to were food, festivals and fitness of course - but nonetheless, we understand that you may have taken offence at the reference to the other 'F' - the swear word."

Improbable, whichever way you look at it

In English "when pigs fly" suggests something is very unlikely to happen. Here's how some other languages express it ...

Israel: "When hair grows on the palm of my hand."

Finland: "When cows fly."

France: "When chicken have teeth."

Hungary: "When it's snowing red snowflakes."

Turkey: "When fish climb trees/poplar trees."

Spain: "When frogs grow hair."

Chinese: "Unless the sun would rise from the west."


Pierre produces living proof of existence

Are you dead yet? A letter sent to about 4000 retired people in Jersey asking if they still exist has been described as offensive by some who received it. The Certificate of Existence was sent to people who used to work for the States of Jersey by the pensions department, which said it wanted to make sure money was not being paid into the accounts of people who had died. Pierre, 85, said, "I went down to the office and was prepared to have a ding dong and the chap said, 'You haven't signed it'. I told him, 'I'm standing here and do exist'." (Source:

Ambulance service too quick to ask for payment

A reader writes: "A near and dear friend passed away last week in the ambulance on the way to hospital. I was appalled to find the ambulance service has posted her an invoice just days after her passing. I was left wondering how she was going to pay for this. Do they not have a sensitivity filter or offer any leeway for the grieving family before asking for money?"

Lookalikes: All Black Rookie Tom Taylor and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg... (hat tip Jay)

Picture this #1: Gruesome salad servers...

Picture this #2: Legs or hotdogs?
Video: Rebecca Archer writes: "Here is a video made by my sisters friend for her 30th birthday, which she is celebrating in NZ. It is a brilliant tourism ad for NZ..." (The Air NZ brand features front and centre suggesting this could be a corporate attempt to contrive a viral... What do you reckon? Is it slick enough to be paid-for ad agency fodder?)

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