Uncle Norm

A historic photo of Adolf Hitler digitally altered to show him holding a Bible, with 
A historic photo of Adolf Hitler digitally altered to show him holding a Bible, with US President Donald Trump holding a Bible at St John’s Episcopal Church across from the White House.
"Uncle Norm" Fossil utilises the power of deductive reasoning. Mr Fossil is currently working on two books: “A Short History of Cretinous Thought”, and “The Dunedin Bus Timetable — A Literary Gem”. He spends a portion of his time answering letters from our more disturbed ODT readers.

Our gang heard a madcap story that two UK sisters released from Covid quarantine drove from Auckland to Wellington without a single stop — save (in some versions of the yarn) for a roadside pee in the wild.

If two Brits can do this, we Kiwi girls surely have equally Olympian bladders. Thus three pairs of Auckland ladies tried to replicate the deed. The first held tight, but ran out of gas near Bulls and had to pay some crook $200 for a tow. The second made a wrong turn and visited the Rotorua mud pools.

But the third made it all the way in their diesel Golf. However, they were disqualified when they admitted they not only bought a KFC bucket in Taihape, but had done toilet breaks at two service stations. Their excuse was that at their first “au natural” attempt, three truckies and a doctor stopped to offer assistance.

The Auckland to Wellington marathon is surely fake news. Who could believe such rubbish?

Melody Smart


Several of our top brains swear it is true. These include PM Ardern, Chief Health Boffin Bloomfield, and the Minister for Borrowed Time, David Clark.

I recently saw a photo of Donald Trump and Adolf Hitler standing side by side in what are clearly publicity shots for their latest books. (See attached picture). Have you any idea of the books’ titles, and do they stock them at Whitcoulls?

Eric Crump


Adolf’s book is titled “307 Reasons I Am Great.” Donald’s is “308 Reasons I am Grater.” They should be available from all good bookshops.

Transgender women have lambasted J.K. Rowling as transphobic, for defining women as “people who menstruate”.

The Harry Potter author is a feminist, who presumably loathes the practise of “mansplaining”. The dictionary states this is: “A pejorative term meaning (of a man) ‘to explain something to a woman in a condescending, overconfident, and often inaccurate manner’.”

If I may be pedantic — When transgenders seek to correct J.K. Rowling, are they guilty (or not) of mansplaining?

Hermione Muggle

Your query is intriguing, but I am neither suicidal nor a total ass. Any attempt to answer it would see me boiled in oil, strung from the nearest tree, etc. Better to quote Voltaire (or perhaps it was Strom), who observed: “If you want to know who controls you, look at who you are not allowed to criticise.”

Some semi-official types are now calling our city Dunedin/Otepoti. Just last week Dunedin’s art gallery announced a one-year gig described as the “Otepoti Artist in Residence”

In 2012, the Otago Settlers’ Museum was rebranded (without public consultation) the Toitu Otago Settlers’ Museum. The “Toitu” part now prevails, and their email address of course, begins “toituosm.”

Otepoti was the earlier name of the place where Dunedin was founded, and I’m afraid the title is not portentous. Otepoti’s ho-hum meaning is “a corner of the harbour,” which doesn’t match the romance of Dunedin being the Gaelic name for Edinburgh. Are we seeing a stealthy move to rename us “Otepoti”?



I suspect you punch at shadows. But, if you are genuinely concerned, phone Dunedin City Council and whisper you’ve heard the true translation of Otepoti is “Ginger Cougar”, (as in the cycle trail the council has deemed inappropriately named). I gather the council’s policy is that if you can get a friend to make a similar hurt objection, two offendees is sufficient to have a place name banned. Your name concern is no more idiotic than the council’s concern. Which, I suppose, concerns.

For ethical reasons, I have decided to become a vegetarian. Eating a lamb that frolicked in the meadows five days ago is just one step from cannibalism.

Unfortunately, my mum is not helpful. She feeds us a lamb roast (the tiny creature’s severed leg, for goodness sake) on Sundays, and threatens “no pudding” if I don’t finish my serving.

Last week, when I requested wok fried tofu, she got mad and declared: “Not a single civilisation ever chose to be vegetarian.” What can I do?

Felix (aged 12)

Go to a mirror, Felix. Examine your top and bottom teeth. Two teeth from the centre, on both left and right sides, you will discover the sharp fangs called “canines”. God, ever merciful, decided to spare you from vegetarian food, and gave you canines.

 - John Lapsley is an Arrowtown writer.



Par Inlind Post

Dear Noman.,

I was peeved that no one mentioned the Dunedin ley lines in relation to the subject of Toitu. A legend prevails of an underground stream flowing Under Theatre Fortunatus. Known landleylines radiate along Tennyson, View and Moray, through Knox Kirk to Leviathan, across The Triangle and right throughout the Chinese Garden to Harbour.

People should know.






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