Friday, May 23, 2008


I always enjoy this supplement that comes each week with Friday's New Zealand Herald , a publication I guess that must be something of a worry for NBR, NZ's leading weekly financial newspaper which also hits the streets on a Friday.
One major difference between the two publications is the generous space given in NBR to the arts under the direction of veteran arts journo and man-about-town John Daly-Peoples. Rarely does one find references to the arts in The Business Herald.
So it was with some surprise this morning that I read in The Business Herald two pieces about last week's hugely successful Auckland Writers & Readers Festival.

First this in John Drinnan's always interesting MEDIA column:

Left-wing political commentator Chris Trotter raised some eyebrows at the Auckland Writers and Readers Festival this month, where a panel of two writers discussed the dangers of free-market globalisation.
After handling the session with some aplomb, the high-profile journo became animated in his praise of the panellists and finished by paying tribute to those who had fought for freedom.
And let us remember the words of Bob Dylan, he said, before breaking into a verse of Dylan's Chimes of Freedom, in full voice. The sing-song is a bit of a party piece for Trotter, who stood up during coverage of one election to break into a full-throated chorus of the Socialist anthem Internationale.

The second piece, by Peter Bromhead, the ultimate grumpy old man, perhaps bitter & twisted might be a better description of him, is one of the most distasteful and savage efforts at humour I have read in a long while. He takes out his own failure as an author by flailing the Festival, Kim Hill, other authors and publishers and in the end just makes himself look childish and petty. Which I guess he is.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Peter has made grumpiness a lifelong pursuit. I was tempted to say “into an art” but how derisory that would be of the arts.