Home' Northern Outlook : February 6th 2013 Contents 2 NORTHERN OUTLOOK, FEBRUARY 6, 2013
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Litany of bad luck traded in
By CATE BROUGHTON
Missing you: Georgina Block's cat
died recently, during a particularly
unfortunate run of bad luck.
PLAGUED BY her bad luck, West
Eyreton woman Georgina Block
decided to offer it to the highest bid-
der on TradeMe.
In the auction, Ms Block shared
her fateful story and offered to give
the proceeds to charity.
She told would-be bidders that
within the space of 20 days, her bad
fortune included losing a cat and dog
to freak accidents, having a fabu-
lous auntie diagnosed with cancer,
her car failed its warrant of fitness,
her horse broke its leg, an irrigation
pipe burst, and she received an unu-
sually large electricity bill.
To top it all off, her spade broke as
she was digging a grave for her dog
and she was forced to use a sauce-
pan, as she could not drive her car.
So on advice from some voodoo
chick with munted teeth, I m selling
my luck, she said.
The listing suggested the bad luck
could be the perfect gift for an ex,
enemy or mother-in-law -- but could
be diluted on delivery.
Sadly the bad luck will be diluted
slightly when you receive it, so it
won t pack the punch I have had,
just enough to give you a smile for
the day at someone s expense.
For Dunedin art teacher, Marnie
Walters, winning the auction with
her $100 bid was a way to relieve Ms
Block of her bad luck.
I saw the auction and it hit a
note. It sounded like she was having
a crap year, so I thought I would help
her out by taking it off her hands.
She said unlike Ms Block she had
experienced a string of good fortune
-- including landing a dream job and
surviving a head-on collision in
which three people died.
Though I don t believe in luck --
I m an atheist and a rationalist -- I do
believe in the power of positive
thought, and the idea of a fresh start
is really powerful for people.
Ms Block said she was surprised
by the huge response to the auction,
which included a marriage proposal.
It was quite funny and each
funny question made me smile. I had
some questions from people who too
had had horrendous luck.
She is pleased with the auction s
success and will be donating the
money to a Breast Cancer charity
and K9 dog rescue.
I thought I d try to make some-
thing good come of my bad situation
. . . and make people smile.
about unsafe loads
By PETER HIDE
A CHRISTCHURCH man who
drives to work in Rangiora each
day is worried about the poten-
tial for serious injury that he
sees frequently on his travels.
He says he has run into a
brick wall with the police, who
have asked him to provide
details of registration numbers
of vehicles involved, otherwise
they can do nothing.
Simon Hewitt, of High Street
Motors, is concerned about
unsafe load practices when it
comes to utes and trailers.
I m looking at getting a dash-
board camera so I have some-
thing to put before the police,
Many of the utes and vans
belonged to tradesmen who
operated their vehicles in a dirty
state and the registration
numbers were obscured or
filthy, he said.
Examples he had witnessed
since the New Year included:
Lineside Rd off-ramp off the
northern motorway -- although
in the right-hand lane, a van
managed to cut across a truck
and then ripped across the grass
verge to get to the ramp.
A trailer-load towed by a buil-
der was not tied down properly
and lost a sheet of Gib board or
similar material that went over
the roof of Mr Hewitt s vehicle.
A can of petrol came off an
insecure load on a ute owned
by a tradesman and was run
over by a following car, spilling
My vehicle was coated in pet-
rol, said Mr Hewitt.
His greatest concern was that
tradesmen seemed to be loading
their trailers and utes without
anything to hold their loads
The problem had got progress-
ively worse for the last couple of
years that he had been driving
out from Christchurch each day.
When he approached the
police about the problem he had
no joy .
They can put a booze bus
around your corner, or have
three cars travelling all the
But what about putting a car
on the road to catch the people
who get away with this?
Mr Hewitt said he was told he
would need to get a registration
number for police to action any
proceedings against offenders.
Worst of all are tradesmen,
and they operate such dirty
vehicles that it s not possible
to see the number plate clearly,
so the police can t do anything,
Sergeant Rene Pabst, of the
traffic unit in Rangiora, con-
firmed a registration number
was needed to get any action
from police, or Mr Hewitt could
always phone *555 and get
There are so many motorists
travelling up and down the
motorway each day that without
having that number it would be
impossible to stop everybody,
If there was an ongoing situ-
ation with unsafe loading, traffic
police could consider a small
campaign and patrol vehicles
would keep a lookout for errant
utes and trailers, Sergeant
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