At the allegedly auspicious 12 minutes and 12 seconds past 12 on 12/12/12, we were in our first-ever meeting with a financial planner. We're obviously going to be rich! Or at least according to the guy, we'll never be poor enough to be entitled to a state pension. Good news which is also bad news - I had always consoled myself that one day I'd get something back from the government.
We began our new life by paying him several thousand caledonian dollars for his advice. Of course, just being still alive is the best riches you can have. At 20 I couldn't imagine living to 30. Then at 30 it looked like I'd be lucky to make 35. Now that I'm umpty and time's running out, the main challenge may be how to blow all the gold before I kick it.
The music of Queen always struck me as just a blue-collar 10CC. Hyperactive warbling for listeners who like the idea of liking music but find this is the nearest they can get, because really they only understand visual pomp. But recently I enjoyed a documentary about Freddy Mercury, who seemed like a really nice guy - shy, sad and self-deprecating. And you have to admire his energy and power on stage. I even caught myself singing along with most of the awful anthems.
When I was about 25, I would escape Edinburgh most weekends, to stay at Dazzle's estate. One Saturday night I had to share the living room floor with Dazzle's pal Rich, just back from a long job on an oil rig. You know how certain people can cause an instant dislike? An extreme deifheid with no interest in what anyone else had to say, he kept me awake half the night with stories of the concert he had recently been to, raving about some guy Freddie Mercury. From then on I decided to avoid both of them.
Next week there's a documentary about Black Sabbath, whom I saw before they were famous, at the Electric Garden with my school chum Dances. Long before the wonderful riffs of Paranoid. They were a blue collar band too, on a mismatched double bill with Rare Bird, whose claim to fame was their one morose hit, Sympathy. In those days the audience sat on a bare floor. Nowadays concert halls have proper seats but everyone stands up.
The groupie grannie at work has become a raver since her old dear passed away. She went to concerts almost every night last week - Devo, Blondie, Simple Minds (who started out playing outdoors for free across from my place, and I had to listen to them whether I wanted to or not). Best of all she saw The Stranglers (who in the 70s fell out with The Damned and Sex Pistols - probably because the Stranglers could actually play).
If you haven't yet seen the dogs taught to drive a car around a race track, google something like NZ Dog Driving Test.