PARS ABOUT PEOPLE
MR D. W. DUTHIE, Auckland manager of the National Bank, has gone to headquarters to relieve Mr J. H. B. Coates, the banking Beau Bruramel of New Zealand, who is off on a European tour. Mr Coates, according to a general feminine belief is one of the handsomest men in New Zealand, very tall, very large, and quite distinguished in appearance. Unlike three parts of the men of New Zealand, he is not barefaced, preferring to let nature clothe his classic features. In_tai., he always shaves with the scissors. He is commonly reported to have 1 / suits and 95 pairs of seeks, each of a different pattern. He has everything a man wants—no he hasn't, for he remains a bachelor. James Hugh Buchanan Coates is of course, an Aucklander and hi's pa arrived with Captain Hobson first governor of New Zealand, in 1842 as private secretary to that celebrity". James was born in 1851, so he has kept handsome for 63 years. He was schooled m the Church of England Grammar SoK-o! here and joined the Bank of New South Wales in 1869, gomg over to' the "National" in 1876. He succeeded Mr W. JJymock in the genera! management when that gentleman retirecL % "The Hon. Charles H. Poole" (see American posters) is helping to drive the water waggon. It is a pity to permit his gems of speech to wilt. At Hamilton hewas nim . Sf "I am 16st. 121bs weight Fm the fellow to get the punch in. Another ffem: "Some time ago I w .afthroln out of Parlianjent. Benzine and booze contributed to this"' Again, "In Tennessee they now raise less hogs than hell "The strike was nearly worth while, because it temporarily closed the saloons." Charles also sazd that his interpretation of the word "wowser" was "hypocrite, but no man was a hypocrite who got down to the firing line. • •• . w Miss Mary Richardson, the suffragette who performed a surgical operation on Velasquez's "Venus and Cupid" with ,a hatchet, has had to "be released from gaol in order to lose an appendix per knite Sort of poetical justice. It would, be interesting to know how many of these poor maniacs are nursing secret appendixes. Te Pana:—These tourists make me tired. Met one last steamer day and he protested violently about the Tongans' lack of hospitality. The king had neglected to ask him to dinner. Tonga is a droll, little shop, I grant you, but it s not quite one of the "Firm's' theatrical shows, which, by the way, are pretty ordinary. As tor George 11. of this kingdom, he is as monarchy as any other monarch. When I go to London I don t expect Teddy to send his car for me and make the kids move up at table Just what line of reasonincr ik favoured by the insipid persons in new white ducks that occasionally blow in here, neither I nor any other native can fathom. Why should the king ask any old stranger to have a drink, or a bowl of soup. Tonga is not a free food kitchen and His Majesty is ramus the uniform of a sal-army officer. I've been thirsty in a city with and without a king. Nobody ever asked me if I was feeling dry, no, not even the monarch. Yet I didn t get annoyed—as a matter ot fact,
I don't drink, and I always keep sixpence in my boot, wherewith to buy a nieal. » a . * a
Lord Rochdale, a Lancashire "cotton lord," who has been "doing New Zealand, is hardly one of those noblemen who obtain their celebrity by carefully refraining from doing anything. He is one of those active, chaps who never rest to any large extent and who would had he been, born at the loom and not in the purple, have strenuously objected to Tom Mann's notion of a working "year" of six months. He left the wool business to run itself white he went soldiering with effectiveness as a yeomanry officer in Bothasland. Is keen on politics and cricket, he lias played for Cambridge and never says "haw!" It seems almost scandalous for a real live lord whom democratic colonials believe should be pedestalled in gorgeous idleness to talk about_ mere wool as if he understood it, and chat about trade like the most plebian merchant. H° : " ," proud of having chased de Wet and it is worth remembering that Christian never caught him.
Those careful democrats in London who "correspond" for city papers in New Zealand know their countrymen dearly love a lord and worship a prince, so that when Tom MeKenzie calls on an Admiral Hi; Serene Highness Prince Louis of Battenberg, they lick their lips and absolutely revel. You see it wouldn't have done to publish a bare gazette notice: "Sub-Lieutenant H.S.H. Prince George of Battenberg to be lieutenant." It had to be conveyed by word of mouth from the princely admiral to Tarn, from Tarn to the democrat reporter, and from the democrat reporter to the gaping myriads across the sea. The point is not that "Bats" was promoted in the ordinary everyday way like ten thousand other youngsters, but that "Oor Tarn" actually spoke to a real live Battenberg. a a a General Sir lan Hamilton does not golf or polo or play cricket, but he is a good sport. Watching some sham fighting at Liverpool, Victoria. he overheard a young officer give a range as 400 yards. Hamilton waited a while, then turned to a South African veteran in the
ranks. "How far does your rifle carry?" said the Inspector-General to the private. "Two thousand, eight hundred yards, sir." "How far is it to that ridge?" "About 400 yds, sir," said the soldier. A curious smile hovered about the General's face, but he said nothing. Later, he remarked, "That man pleased me. He knew perfectly well that the ridge was only 130 yds away; but he deliberately said 400 yds to cover up the mistake of his officer. It was loyal." Dr Albert A. Martin, the brilliant surgeon from Palmerston North who is off to America and Europe on a radium hunt, is rather a remarkable young man. He has indeed made the Palmerston North hospital renowned throughout New Zealand by his extraordinary surgical successes. Albert is one of a large family of Lumsden Martins and his father, Mr Tom Martin, was one of the most highly respected men in the railways when he was senior guard in that vicinity. A schoolmate of Dr Martin, speaking of his success, mentioned that it was probably due to his extraordinary persistence and application during and after he attended Lumsden primary school. He practically paid for his medical education at Edinburgh with the numerous scholarships he won. During his school days he was affectionately nicknamed "Nap" in reference to his Napoleonic habits of concentration and courage. No better man could be turned on to fight for a radium depot in New Zealand. * * « Big "Dick" Crowe, secretary to the Education Board, spoke in an expert way the other day of school sewing. A friendly ex-teacher has a vivid recollection of big Dick, (who is about 6 foot 3 inches, and broad in proportion) with tiny bits of sewing in his huge hand and taking remarkable interest in it, too. He would detect the slightest variation in stitching and talk most learnedly about a bit of rag that looked as if it had blown against a mountain and stuck there. In his inspectorial days Big Dick was something of a welcome spectacle in the North. He used to ride an enormous bright bay horse as big and bluff and hearty as himself. He didn't play about with chance horses, or Maori weeds, or odd Shetland ponies and people used to see a tower of something seven miles away *xnd exclaim: "My word, here's a storm coming—or it might be Mr Crowe!" Mr E. C. Purdie, who "doesn't believe boys ought to be taught sewing" (hear! hear!) also is an expert judge of fine needlework and the slipped stitch that would get past him would be a. very clever bit of "Coate's 40" indeed. . in Adelaide they are telling a belated George lieid story. VVhen the bulky High Commissioner was travelling in a train during a heatwave he tried to cool down by shed- ' ding his coat and waistcoat. When leaving the car he left the waistcoat behind, and in the local paper next morning some honest rustic advertised that he had found a tent in the carriage and that the owner could have same by paying the freight. m Rewards still have their place in the modern scholastic system, despite the ideals of some reformers. This announcement does not refer entirely to the end-of-the-year carnivals at which books and medals are handed out. It has to do with the daily life of the schools—especially the infant departments of the primary seminaries. In these seminurseries the man or woman who gives up his time to the job of keeping long lines of good and bad little boys and girls in some sort of order has to resort to various expedients to gain the end in view. The distribution of sweets in accordance with the standard of conduct maintained seems to be a recognised system in some Auckland schools. No doubt the local WeeMacGregors think "it's grand."
Col. W. R, Bloomfield, O.C. the Auckland Territorial Mounted Rifles Regiment went away by the Niagara last Saturday. Men of the regiment and the regimental band, under Lieut. Whalley Stewart, saw him off. It will interest the public to know that the bandsmen were admitted to the wharf on the payment of twopence per head. We can't have these soldier chaps indulging in any cheap sentiment. It had been thought nice and kind and desirable that the band should fall in on the wharf and play the colonel away, but sentimentality doesn't appeal to the Harbour Board. It is against the regulations of that terrible body to permit a band to play on the wharf. It might frighten the shipping or loosen the piles, or churn up the H.B.s- Pacific. So the band had to go outside the Wharf gates to play the colonel off. General Godley, O.C. the forces, looked up Bandmaster Stewart, and asked him why he didn't tootle on the wharf. The band officer told him about the H.B.s regulation. The general said a few things—but he's not the chairman of the H.B.
The Maori "King" went away in the Niagara, too. It apparently isn't against the regulations of this sacred body to permit Maori hakas and large brown vocalism, so that if the M.R. Band had hung its instruments on the gates and yelled and danced, the authorities wouldn't have said a word. Apparently a band can go aboard a boat, play itself black in the face, but it must not toot a single toot on the wharf. With that facility for finding out things for which the daily Press is so noted, having seen a band in regulation territorial uniform playing its colonel away, it remarked
that the Maori .King was played away by a brass band. If Gabriel was to blow his trumpet on the Queen's wharf the" horrified officials of the H.B. would rush out and tear the instrument away, and the daily Press would inform the public that an itinerant organist was serenading the fourth engineer of the Young Bungaree. a i a a
It seems particularly inappropriate for the Rev. J. Dawson, secretaiy of the New Zealand Alliance, to compliment S.S. Barrett Rutledge, the Raider, by saying, "More power to his elbow!" Outside Alliance circles, the inference would be that Mr Dawson was inciting little Barrett to "bend his elbow," when it is known that all police officers engaged in the suppression of the unlicensed liquor business are all total abstainers. The senior sergeant was especially imported from the South to. deal with the unlicensed liquor trade— and he's doing his job, that's all.
A highly esteemed cleric, who, however, never held a charge during his residence in New Zealand, died at Epsom this week. The late Rev. Alexander Ferguson has been living in retirement at Epsom for the past sixteen years, and had before he came to this country accomplished his work. The most interesting, because the most strenuous part of his ministry, was the 13 years spent as vicar of St. Luke's, in Demerara, a charge that broke down his health and compelled him to seek the cooler climate of his native Scotland again. He was advised, after a short residence on the Continent, to come to New Zealand for 'health reasons. Mr A. M. Ferguson, of Messrs John Burns, Ltd.
is a son, and there are two daughters.
Everyone is sorry to 'hear' that Archdeacon Calder has to take a three months' vacation for health reasons. His kind heart and his unconventional manner are known far beyond the bounds of his parish in sunny Ponsonby. The Archdeacon, by the way, is a master of the parenthesis. He seldom speaks, whether in the pulpit or on the platform, without enlivening his remarks by unexpected digressions.
Douglas McLean, who has secured a good price for one of his Shorthorn bulls ait the Sydney Royal Show stock sales, is a man of quiet demeanour, but he counts, for a good deal in Hawke's Bay. He resides in Napier, as a rule, and has in his time represented that constituency in the House of Representatives, but his interests centre in his Maraekakaho property, situated not far from Hastings. This station is a show place, and makes a great impression on visiters. "R. D. D.," to give him a cognomen (derived from his initials), which he often receives when he is mentioned in conversation .in his absence, upholds Highland traditions, as befits a son of Sir Donald McLean, the famous Native Minister of other days. He makes it point of being present at the annual Caledonian sports in Napier, and he is a liberal supporter of many other organisations, and never shirks public duties.
The Department of Agriculture, with its various more or less important divisions, and its liability to free criticism, is not one of the reposeful branches of the public service. No one knows this better than R. Evatt, who is retiring from it on superannuation. Of late years he has been inspector of offices. This gave him an amount of travelling that was a change after his long period of desk duty as chief clerk in the head office in the Big Building at Wellington. While chief clerk he had much to do in the way of detail work with 'c-he administration of the growing department. His urbanity was appreciated alike by the public and by the departmental officers and expirts, and his patience and' tact enabled him to Km-moiuit the difficulties attendant on inadeqaate accommodation and other disadvantages which for some time were a gnod deal in evidence.
An old red funnel skipper stopped off the bridge of the Arahura the other day in the person of Captain Lambert. He trod the deck for the same company for 30 years, made no mistakes, no enemies, and no large fortune, When the ship's officers and men were dragging the inevitable present from under the table the old salt mentionel that during that 30 years of look out he had been in command of 30 boats. In the sturdy evening of his life the old gentleman will do an occasional watch round his garden flagpole. Which, of course, reminds of the story of another old skipper who had repeatedly sailored for 40 years. He retired and took a "cabin boy" with him. He. gave this boy very definite sailing orders. Every morning at four the boy would knock at the skipper's door loudly. "Well?" the skipper would yell. "Time to show a leg, sir!" Then the skipper would roar, "Oh, go to !" roll over, and sleep till nine. "I'm having the time of my life," he used to say, and died at the age of 94, a victim to longevity.
John Brett, of Palmerston North, presided over the convention of the National Association of coachbuilders just held in Auckland. That is not the full name of the organisation, but it will serve, tins not being a technical jourmxi Ihe correct title is an all-embrac-ing set of words, and shows that anyone may be a member of the association who builds or repairs road vehicles, including, of course motor cars. Whilst John Brett i& particularly well-known in Palmerston North, Masterton and Wanganui and on all that coast, he also has some renown throughout the Dominion, not only as an enterprising man in his line of business, but also as a believer in a good understanding among all those engaged in'it. He has watched the evolution of road traffic between Wanganui and Wellington and in the Rangitikei and Manawatu districts from the early days, and has seen motor vehicles come in and take a prominent place on the highways. In fact, the invasion of the motor car and the motor waggon is the coachbuilder's principal problem, and would appear to be best met by a treaty of alliance.
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PARS ABOUT PEOPLE, Observer, Volume XXXIV, Issue 32, 18 April 1914
PARS ABOUT PEOPLE Observer, Volume XXXIV, Issue 32, 18 April 1914
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