Hard News by Russell Brown


I really can't pick tomorrow night's Air New Zealand Cup final, but I'll tell you one thing for free: if the commentary is as bad as it was during last Friday's Auckland-Wellington semi, well … actually nothing will happen, because a knowledge of the rules and an ability to discuss the game intelligently are clearly not a prerequisite for a commentary job with Sky.

Time after time, Richard Turner and Murray Mexted got the wrong end of the stick, failed to comprehend calls that were evident to anyone with a pair of ears/eyes, blathered right through key turnovers, lost lineouts and the like, and generally subtracted, rather than added value.

This isn't anything new from Mexted, whose ratio of been-there-done-that-that nuggets of insight to outright incomprehension generally runs about 1:20, but putting him together with Turner took things to a whole new place. And not a good place either.

There's a a clip of Willie Mason mouthing off during the Kiwis' haka last Saturday, and then being well and truly pwned by David Kidwell. Almost makes up for losing the actual game.

Reaching back into the archives, a clip of that awesome, audacious end-to-end try scored by Carlos Spencer at Jade in 2004. The uploader has some other rugby stuff.

Jonathan Ah Kit notes that Dino the dinosaur, star of the White Island Volcanocam these past two and a half years, is hanging in and apparently still in good nick, defying predictions that acid fumes would melt his ickle plastic coat. Amazing.

Loving the Late Late Show's Bush is drinking again clip.

Borat interviewed by Jon Stewart on Night of Too Many Stars. Borat's very funny, but I do feel a little bit sorry for Kazakhstan. My impression (garnered through a fascinating Channel 4 documentary called, Kazakhstan Swings) is that it's actually quite an interesting place. By way of contrast, Sacha Baron Cohen, out of character on the Daily Show a couple of years ago. He's so … urbane.

Update: Lyndon Hood points out that the story du jour in Kazakhstan is that they've misspelled the Kazakh for "bank" on their new banknotes. Oh dear.

A new YouTube user called sackorats has a live clip of the Chills performing 'Satin Doll' and some other interesting stuff.

And finally, NZ On Air has declined funding for another series of the comedy news quiz Off the Wire, apparently on the grounds that it's not-New-Zealand-enough. If you'd like to make comment on that decision, feel free to hit the reply button below and I can ensure it gets to the right people.