EH Holden Special


My Grandma lived in a block of flats like this, on the ground floor, she wasn’t very mobile. Spent her time watching Days of our Lives and John Wayne movies. Not many John Wayne movies probably, but that’s what she used to tell me. It was that little thing we would bond over, even though I didn’t like John Wayne movies, and I’m guessing she didn’t either. We would go and visit in the school holidays, Mum would keep Grandma company and we’d hang around the town all day, looking for things to do. Not much was happening in Whanganui in the mid seventies. I know, we were as surprised then as you are now. I do remember seeing a Gary Glitter, Slade and The Sweet triple bill at the cinema one afternoon – bargain, three for the price of one. We were a bit too cool for this sort of thing, but these were dire times. We entered the cinema by sashaying down the pavement as though the cinema wasn’t there, then suddenly lurching through the front doors, like being sucked in by a vacuum. It was the only way to minimise the chance of anyone seeing us enter, not that we knew anyone in town but the stakes were high – if this got back to Wellington … it was all over, all over mate.

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Holden HG Premier


In 1910, yeah I know that was a long time ago but bare with me, a bunch of locals at Lyall Bay started a surf lifesaving club – they called it Lyall Bay Surf Lifesaving Club. No, stick with me, it gets better. Being rather pleased with themselves, they thought it a good idea to have a demonstration day and show Wellington just how clever they were. Demo-day arrived and the surf was pumping (normally a good thing for a surf lifesaving demonstration day). The teams and routines had all been agreed with a nod and a wink. Five minutes before hitting the surf, the club captain (we’ll call him Ted because his name was Ted) lost his bottle and pushed another clubby (Neil) forward. Clubbie Neil didn’t like being pushed so pushed back. The two went hard at it in front of an enthralled crowd until Neil had had enough and stomped off. He only stomped 50 metres and stopped, stamped his foot and declare ’Sod it, I’ll start my own club and I’ll be boss’. And so it was, Maranui Surf Lifesaving Club was born (one assumes ‘Neil’s Surf lifesaving Club’ was rejected) and Captain Neil never went out in pumping surf again. The two clubs sat side by side quite well on the whole, but when a dispute broke out, they would go up the beach to the ‘Bend’, and with gloves on, sort it out. The Bend became known as ‘Gloves’ and when the dispute was unable to be sorted at Gloves, they moved further up the beach to a spot known as “Gloves off’. No dispute went unresolved.

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1969 Holden Monaro

Ever found yourself in a guitar shop, mentally spending thousands of dollars, imagining which half dozen guitars would look best mounted in a row along the living room wall. OK, bedroom wall. OK, study wall. OK, maybe not actually on the wall and maybe not half a dozen. One maybe – if it’s a big birthday. I have heard there’s a convincing argument for pitching it as a ‘bridge’ over the mid-life crisis, but further than that I can’t comment. A photo of a Strat, in a quiet frame, on a wall, somewhere … preferably in the house may work. It’ll keep the dream alive at least and perhaps leave the crisis negotiation open for that discreet yellow Monaro. Just thinking aloud.

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