Monday, February 27, 2006

Sideswipe

By Ana Samways

Japanese men do not like to be seen eating elaborate cakes in public, so a sweet-maker set up what looks like a typical fast-food outlet to sell cakes disguised as hamburgers and fries. Take the Mamido burger. The "bun" is actually a sponge cake, the "patty" inside is chocolate cream and the "pickles" are kiwifruit slices.

The deep-fried fish burger features a banana shaped like a fish fillet in sponge cake. It is topped with "tartare sauce", which is actually fresh cream. And the gratin burger is a sandwich with a cream cheese and fruit filling. The French fries look like the real thing but are custard cream covered in starch powder and deep-fried.

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If you've been wondering about borderline calls from cricket umpire Billy Bowden, it may be a vision issue. Returning to Auckland from Christchurch yesterday, Bowden bypassed the long line in the Koro Club check-in queue by going through the exit to the first available Air New Zealand counter. "Oops, didn't see you all standing there," he announced unapologetically to the waiting line, complete with stupid waving gestures. Those at the front of the queue were former test cricketer Gavin Larsen and friends, who didn't really mind. The rest of us nobodies did, though. We also have planes to catch, thanks, Billy.

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A reader says it was thrilling to see the lovely Pippa Wetzell from One News being filmed at 5.15pm on the Bond St overbridge last Wednesday for a story on Auckland's traffic congestion problems. Not so thrilling having to manoeuvre around the news car parked in a clearway on Bond St further down the road when there were plenty of carparks across the road.

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Prolific Sideswipe emailer Murray Hunter writes: "Great idea to ban putting fuel into the 20 per cent of cars with no WOF, but you would have to ban self-serve petrol stations. People without warrants would have no qualms in filling an unwarranted car, just as teenagers with no licence keep on driving."

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Welsh authorities tried to fine Steve Crossman for speeding ... on his tractor. Crossman got a ticket generated by a speed camera claiming he'd been photographed doing 85 miles an hour. After he told them his tractor had a top speed of 26 miles an hour, and it would take him more than four hours to drive it from his farm to where he was allegedly speeding, camera operators admitted they had misread the licence plate on the photograph and retracted the ticket. (Source: reason.com)

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Statistics New Zealand may be confident its computer system can cope with the heavy usage come Census night (it was emphatic in the Business Herald on Friday) but the folk delivering the hard copy forms are insistent we take the paper "just in case the computer crashes".

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Lion Nathan was not pleased to see its "Keep your back to the wall" billboard rear its ugly head in Sideswipe and would like it made clear the story was from an 2003 campaign, not its current one.

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