A very funny and oddly touching post, Anke. I trust you've made a full recovery from your Boot Camp trauma.
Happily, I can reassure you that... cough... there are a few slothful and bookish New Zealanders out there.
Actually, I am a great believer that most forms of physical fitness are unnecessary. In my medical opinion (and I should point out that I am a doctor), if your liver is fully exercised -- for example, by the daily consumption of a few pints over a good novel -- then the rest of your body will follow.
I'm writing a book on this subject called 'Drink Yourself Fit'. Copies can be pre-ordered through Southerly...
Why be such a pretentious ponce?
If you want to join the Army, do so. You're never too old in NZ & you'll end up on a tropical island - say Solomons is where the TF are serving at the moment.
You seem to have all the other prerequisites for blocking Hagley Park Cycleways already - kids - without the need to join these pretentious asses.
I know he's an ex-storeman from the Royal Marines, but the intimidation you allude to only leads to scared soldiers (and soldiers includes an oath and sense of duty to something bigger than self).
The rise of militia and those attracked to militia scare me.
Anke - did you fail art school by any chance?
If you want to play on the Burnham confidence courses.
The old Krypton Factor course & the newish High Rpoes course give them a ring and they'll hook you up. Added bonus - you don't look an ass in public (buggar if that was your goal) and you don't block the cycleways.
Stick to it Anke, and you'll be happier for it. There's nothing wrong in being fit and strong.
Most New Zealanders spend their days sailing, surfing, skiing, tramping, mountain biking, road biking, jogging, kayaking, climbing up rocks, rafting down rivers, bungy-jumping and skydiving
I used to think that. Actually, we mostly watch TV programmes featuring people doing these things.
Actually, you're lucky you are in NZ - in some countries, hinting at the very glimmering of a vague fantasy about going postal with a high-powered weapon would get you shipped off to Guantanamo.
Personally I subscibe to the "everything in moderation - especially moderation" school of thought. A year ago I decided to up my excercise level, not so much for a buff toned physique, or even for dinner party conversation, but to maintain my lifestyle. I'd noticed a bit of lard buildup here & there, and the distilled wisdom of the diet industry comes down to "eat less calories than you burn". So my choice was eat (& drink) less, or burn more.
I chose burn more. It wasn't a hard choice.
But I did tell my trainer quite forcefully. I want excercise, but not the kind where I can't move the next day, that ain't my bag, baby.
And I'll be there in the queue at the bookshop for a signed copy of Dr David's book when it hits the shelves.
Anke, I think one of the necessary militaristic regimes it is vital to go through in order to become a fully assimiliated member of NZ society (or Godzone) as it was affectionately known when I arrived here 45 years ago, is to have gone to school here. It provides the ultimate lesson in conformity. Had I had that early indoctrination I wouldn't have had such difficulty avoiding the wearing of towelling hats and being asked why I wasn't in walk shorts and long socks after each Labour Day -- not to mention being inculcated with the fanaticism necessary to watch 30 grown men mud wrestling each weekend. Without the benefit of being processed through the NZ education system we must merely remain amused observers.
I think you're hanging out with a different class of Kiwi than I am, Anke. Everyone I know is a heavy drinker and many are smokers. I only know one (1) guy who exercises like the guys I knew in Colorado. Ditch the boot camp, move to Leigh, join the lazy brigade :-)
Jonty, I would have agreed about school - but only 20 years ago. I was shocked to discover from my brother (a senior high school teacher) that sport is now a definite back-seater at schools these days. Forget about closing the tuck shop - get those spotty youths back onto to a muddy footy field on freezing July afternoons! Let them learn manhodd via the manly trophy of severely sprig-raked backs as they kill the ball on their own line and take it for the team!
When I was in school, sport wasn't compulsory but to get out was a was a sternly frowned upon opt out activity, complete with a doctors note. The sports themselves had a severe hierarchy: If you were any good, you played rugby. If you were not good enough for any rugby position whatsoever, or you were an insipid pasty recent recent immigrant from the mother country, you were exiled to the howling wilderness of the soccer teams, albeit with a disgusted lip curl from the mainstream New Zealand rugby coaches. The school's quota of homicidal maniacs were armed with hockey sticks and sent off to wreck havoc in the local hockey comp with a minimum of oversight.
Rugby league wasn't allowed - it was an expellable offense, suitable only for the brown lesser fortunates at the very worst of the state schools, whose foul, run down cloisters were home to all sorts of repellent multi-cultural and working class activities.
In summer it was cricket, rowing, athletics and swimming in descending order of preference. But that was in the days when the spoil sport nannies of the teacher unions hadn't yet demolished the glorious salad days summer holidays of endless school-free weeks, so summer sports weren't much chop. Actually, getting rid of the long summer holiday was an act of careless cultural genocide that many educationalists will pay for with their lives in public show trails once the revolution comes.
Sport should be compulsory again. It'll knock the flab from a generation, teach community to lazy teachers who currently feebly wave NCEA paperwork as a pathetic excuse not to engage in thankless hours of extra-curricular coaching and make us mighty again in the pantheons of international sport.
Apart from the fact that the last time I got on a push-bike I fell off, and I enjoy the endorphin treat going to the gym gives me I'm in sympathy with this blog entry. If anyone finds the conspiracy that is determined to make New Zealand into Adventure Holiday Land I'm willing to shout a round of ammo!
Thanks for all the feedback. And no, I was never at art school. I must admit that I have actually become a keen surfer over the years, and I love skiing.... but not talking about if for hours on end!
F.Y.I., not only did I lose my arms in bootcamp, I also lost one leg recently, so to speak: I was on crutches for two weeks after an old karate injury caught up with my knee. The meniscus is a mess.
There's an old German saying: "Sport ist Mord". Go figure that one out.
Ugh, meniscus surgery isn't fun. My wife had it done when she got her ACL fixed. The good news is that you eventually get back to full strength--unlike some other injuries you could sustain. Does NZ healthcare cover your meniscus or is it considered optional surgery?
I'm sorry. Karate Injuries? Skiing? Surfing weeks after second child?! This woman is too Kiwi already. Quick. David. Write that book and send her the first copy. I'll pour the drink.
okay... okay... I wasn't going to admit that one, but it's gonna come out sooner or later: I also ride a road bike. Occasionally. I guess that does make me a lycra lout. But never, ever, I swear, will I be a boot camp recruit again. Only over my dead pacifist body.
ACC covers my surgery because the Karate accident happened here. This is a dangerous country if you want to be fit. My meniscus finally gave up while I was standing in my bedroom, folding the washing. Housework's a killer, too. Drinking sounds like the only acceptable and safe activity these days. Can't wait for Dr. Dave's book!
Hi Anke, last time I read one of your posts you were talking about a non - violent German culture that had done away with corporal punishment in schools in the '70's, all to do with the war etc. As I attended German schools in the '70's and '80's I strongly disagree.
As for the type of kiwi you believed us to be (skiing, biking, surfing etc), well, most of the kiwis I know are working overtime trying to afford their own dream home, while prices are going through the roof. My German friends over here ski, tramp, camp every weekend while looking for bigger and better 'dream' homes.
all the best,
Hi Linda, please keep in mind that my observations on kiwi culture in this blog are purely satirical - hence the stereotyping.