Monday, April 10, 2006


Not one, not two, but six of these misspelled signs have appeared at Middlemore Hospital.

By Ana Samways

Poor Jules purchased an office desk and chair advertised at The Warehouse, which she was sitting happily on, when one of the legs broke from underneath her. Her call to the red shed went like this:

Warehouse assistant: How much do you weigh?

Jules: Um, 72kg.

WA: Ahh, you're too heavy.

Jules: Pardon?

WA: You're too heavy.

Jules: But lots of people weigh more than me!

WA: It's for students. It said so in the fine print.

Jules: There was no fine print and I am a student!

WA: How long were you sitting on it?

Jules: Um, about two hours.

WA: You can't sit on the chair for more than two hours. It said so on the instructions.

Jules: There weren't any instructions! I'd like to get my money back!

WA: You can't get your money back.

(After speaking to the manager and then the manager of the manager, Jules finally got her money back when she returned the three-legged chair).

* * *

Black woman Mildred Jeter and white man Richard Perry Loving (yes, that is his real name), were residents of Virginia who had been married in June of 1958 in the District of Columbia, having left Virginia to evade a state law banning marriages between persons of different races. When they returned to Virginia, they were charged with violation of the ban, pleaded guilty, and were sentenced to one year in prison, with the sentence suspended for 25 years on condition that the couple leave the state of Virginia. The trial judge in the case, echoing a common sentiment of the time, proclaimed that: "Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix." The couple moved to the District of Columbia, and in 1963 began a series of lawsuits seeking to overcome their conviction on Fourteenth Amendment grounds, ultimately winning in the Supreme Court four years later. (Source:

* * *

American celebrities appearing in ads are nothing new, but New Zealand has been spared the spectacle, until now. In a deodorant ad, Hollywood has-been Ben Affleck struts around town with a device to count the number of women who give him the eye (one licks hollandaise off the end of her asparagus) and of course the geek boy in the lift has a higher total cause he's sprayed himself with the product. Do a decent film, you ego-maniac. Then, silver-fox Richard Gere, dressed in colonial attire (white linen head to toe), wanders around the cleanest, sparkliest part of India, zip-zapping a whole lot of doves for a little girl - talk about cultural imperialism. There, I feel better. Go to new site to unload ad hate.


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