J. M. Sherrard Award



Wellington author, Roberta McIntyre, author of The Canoes of Kupe:  A History of Martinborough District (Victoria University Press, 2002) and Whose High Country: A history of the South Island high country of New Zealand (Penguin 2008), learnt last week that her earlier book had won the J. M. Sherrard Award in New Zealand and Local History. Her first thought was that she was the subject of a joke:  whoever got an award ten years after publication? The Canterbury Historical Association letterhead looked genuine, but she made further checks. Sure enough it was real and three days later a certificate arrived. Anticipating her cheque in the mail, Roberta went shopping!

The J.M. Sherrard Award, the only national award for local and regional history in New Zealand, has been almost a decade in abeyance. Valued at $1,000 (divided among recipients when they are more than one), Roberta shared her happy surprise windfall with Colin Amodeo, who with Ron Chapman wrote Forgotten Forty-Niners: Being an account of the men and women who paved the way in 1849 for the Canterbury Pilgrims in 1850 (Christchurch, Caxton Press, 2003) and Deborah Dunsford for Doing it themselves: The Story of Kumeu, Huapai and Taupaki (Auckland, Kumeu District History Project, 2002). Congratulations to all.


Posted on 27th February 2012 in Books


Music Joke



I hesitate to share this joke as it requires knowledge of music, but many people will enjoy it:

C, E-flat, and G go into a bar. The bartender says, “Sorry, but we don’t serve minors.” So E-flat leaves, and C and G have an open fifth between them.

After a few drinks, the fifth is diminished, and G is out flat. F comes in and tries to augment the situation, but is not sharp enough. D comes in and heads for the bathroom, saying, “Excuse me; I’ll just be a second.” Then A comes in, but the bartender is not convinced that this relative of C is not a minor. Then the bartender notices B-flat hiding at the end of the bar and says, “Get out! You’re the seventh minor I’ve found in this bar tonight.”

E-flat comes back the next night in a three-piece suit with nicely shined shoes. The bartender says, “You’re looking sharp tonight. Come on in, this could be a major development.” Sure enough, E-flat soon takes off his suit and everything else, and is au natural. Eventually C sobers up and realizes in horror that he’s under a rest.

C is brought to trial, found guilty of contributing to the diminution of a minor, and is sentenced to 10 years of D.S. without Coda at an upscale correctional facility.


Posted on 14th February 2012 in Music