Discovering Jean-Michel Jarre

I was introduced to Jean-Michel Jarre at one of the first Laser Tag arenas in New Zealand, possibly the world.

It was called “Futron” and was in a large warehouse next to a popular theme park in West Auckland.

It was multi-level, filled with fog machines and lasers and Star Trek style doors that opened when you shot them, and Jean-Michel Jarre played as a constant soundtrack.

I remember there were TV screens giving instructions to each team, and we have to successfully tag four pyramid “flags” throughout the playing area.

It was truely magical for a space-and-sci-fi obsessed preteen.

My friends and I only went a couple of times before it turned into paintball, which wasn’t as much fun for 11yr olds!

As a direct results of Futon, Jarre’s Rendez-vous was one of the first vinyls I ever bought and I remember playing it over and over again on weekend mornings when my parents were still in bed, happily drumming along on the sofa.

Fourth Rendez-Vous was my favourite, but by coincidence, Jarre also featured on New Zealand TV with Equinoxe, Pt. 4 used as at the theme for a popular wildlife show, Our World.

Hearing it now still gives me late 80’s family TV night flashbacks.

Kiwi Story Time

The NZ Herald published an article about Kiwi Slang, so I thought I’d try and use all of their examples in a sentence. I didn’t quite mange it, but I did write a sweet as story.

In the original version some Australianisms crept in – I put this down to growing up with a neighbour who was originally from Australia – they used many of the Kiwi slang terms too, so they sort of all merged into one. I have re-edited the text to remove them in this version.

To be read in the style of Radio New Zealand story time.

A trip to the beach

A picture of a New Zealand beach

Barry packed his bag for the trip to the bach. Looking forward to the sweet summer ahead, his pack was already chocka when he realised he had forgotten his togs and jandals.

He looked through the mess in his room, until he found both jandals under his bed where the dog had hidden them. He sighed looking at the tooth marks. They were totally munted.

Mum came back from the dairy, and Barry asked if they could take a tiki-tour past The Warehouse to buy some new jandals. Mum agreed, and off they went.

It wasn’t long before they were right out in the wop-wops, and Dad’s “rolls canardly” was starting to sound a bit suss.

“I’ll pull over up ahead and take a look, eh?” Dad said to Mum.

“Ok Luv,” Mum replied, not looking up from her cross-stitch.

The car rolled to a stop in a picnic area next to a small, inviting, beach.

Dad opened the bonnet and eyed the engine. “I reckon the radiator cap is a bit dodgy.” he said out loud, to no one in particular.

“Hey Barry,” Dad called, “Grab the bottle of water from the boot will ya.”

Barry slipped on his new jandals and stepped into the hot summer sun. He found the water bottle, and handed it to Dad.

“Ta” Dad said, as he used the bottom of his T-shirt to delicately remove the hot radiator cap.

A sudden burst of hot steam erupted from the radiator, engulfing Dad’s face. “Bugger!,” he yelled, staggering backwards.

Dad filled up the radiator with water and got back in the car. “I reckon we’ll need to give it a bit of time to cool down,” he said to Mum. “I might have a snooze.”

“Why don’t you go for a swim, Barry?” said Mum.

Barry was stoked. He grabbed his togs and towel, and set off tramping through the tall seaside grass towards the inviting clear water of the beach.