Sunday, February 27, 2011

Finding Elborado

During tragedies words can gain a sad sort of autonomy, as increasingly desperate hopes run up against realities which are difficult to accept.

Scores of hours have passed since the last live body was prised from the ruins of Christchurch, but in press conference after press conference politicians and aid workers continue to insist that they are running a 'rescue' and not a 'recovery' operation. The first word expresses the hope of finding further buried survivors of last Tuesday's quake; the second would represent the acceptance that there are no survivors left to find. There is a sort of comfort that can be gained from the continued use of 'rescue', even if the word has lost any real purchase on reality.

The situation in Christchrch is so sad that I thought it was worth relaying one piece of good news to emerge from the city in the past twenty-four hours. A week or so ago I blogged about a wild gig that a reformed lineup of Bill Direen's legendary band The Bilders played up in Auckland. The keyboardist at that gig was Mick Elborado, who graced The Bilders for a short time in the mid-'80s before helping to form another cult Flying Nun outfit called The Terminals. Mick popped up in the comments box under my post to say hello, and to query my use of the adjective 'Tolkienesque' to describe his beard.

By the time he was making his intervention on this blog Mick had returned from Auckland to his hometown of Christchurch, and after last Tuesday's quake Bill Direen and other friends were soon firing off messages asking after his well-being. For three long days, Mick's whereabouts were a mystery, and the enquiries continued. This morning, though, a relieved Bill sent me an e mail announcing that comrade Elborado had turned up safe and sound in Christchurch.

It seems appropriate to post the video clip for one of The Terminals' best-known songs:


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Maps,

His name's Mick Elborado not El dorado.


3:43 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's one of many!


3:44 pm  
Blogger Richard said...

Talking of Tolkienesque, did The Wizard of Christchurch get wiped out in the big shake up? I recall him from about 1970 raving in the Square...

He may have cast a spell which "backfired". Bill and his mates and / or the Wizard and perhaps some Outside Agency may well have contributed to the Big Shake.

I have recently learnt (via Wikipedia, where else?) that "human agency" can in fact trigger earthquakes and exacerbate them. effects of them. So "inhuman agency" may also do...

4:25 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the reference is to El Topo, I believe


4:54 pm  
Anonymous Meros said...

I gave the Wizard my copy of Anti-oedipus a few years ago when I was hitch-hiking back to Dunedin from Christchurch. He gave me a lift to where his home was, in Timaru. So I guess he was in Timaru, rather than in CHCH. That said, Mr Wizard, surely you've read it by now... but what are the chances I will read it again?

8:23 pm  
Blogger maps said...

Apologies, Malcolm, for the blunder: I've corrected it. Kinda ruins the title of the post, though!

8:48 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Below is an email sent to Max Legg but we are also asking people to come out this Sunday morning at 9.30am at Victory Church in downtown Auckland and give out leaflets promoting tolerance, understanding and respect to the Victory Church goers and asking them to censure their Church leaders.

It is important that we challenge these views and to give Victory Church's members an alternative point of view to that of their ministers.

Natural disasters are caused by plate tectonics not divine intervention.
It is disrespectful to the victims of the earthquake to say they are being punished for social reforms like outlawing violence against children.
Religious leaders should be concentrating on leading efforts in solidarity with the people of Christchurch instead of inciting amongst their or followers hatred towards homosexuals, sex workers or social reformers.


Max Legg,
Senior Minister,
Victory Christian Church

Kia ora Max Legg,
I was dismayed to hear that hours after the Christchurch earthquake you had sent an email to MPs saying that the Christchurch eatthquake was divine punishment for among other things, Parliament allowing civil unions, prostitution law reform or outlawing physical violence against children.

Your views are abhorrent and disrespectful to the victims of the quake and their families. At a time like this we should be rallying around to support the people of Christchurc and express our compassion and solidarity with the people affected.

Disasters, such as this earthquake are terrible events that we cannot control but we can contol our reaction to it. Your attempt to twist this event to suit your own horrible and abusive views are disgusting.

Oftentime disasters can help us overcome bigotry or discrimination as terrible circumstances make us see that we are all one humanity and that we have more in common than we have in difference.

I hereby ask you to publicly retract your email to MPs on Tuesday 22 February. Show some respect for the victims of this tragic, tragic disaster. You are in a position of great influence and mana as a senior minister in your church and should have known better than to seek to promote hate and bigotry when the rest of the country are rallying around to show our love and compassion for the people of Christchurch.

Omar Hamed
Socialist Aotearoa

12:46 am  
Blogger AngonaMM said...

We were all greatly relieved to hear that Mickle had (symbolically) emerged from the rubble intact and ready to rebuild. His inspired keyboard phrases have brought zing and frisk to so many lineups since he took the stage! Unlike some musicians he's remained an avid listener too! Christchurch couldn't do without him. Viva Borrado!

12:55 am  
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2:57 pm  

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