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Kiwi vs. Shark?

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Samantha Lee
Samantha Lee

The US, recently, has caught my attention a couple of times by mentioning something called Shark Week. Bones saw a teacher take her class to an aquarium for it. The Obama Administration has launched a weekly internet clip called West Wing Week, and in a recent edition Small Business Administrator Karen Mills encouraged focusing on small business every week, “except for Shark week. We don’t want to mess with that.”

So, being of an inquisitive nature and having run out of Fight Club to watch, I googled Shark Week to find out what the story is.  Apparently it is a week in August each year, on the Discovery Channel, that makes a big deal about sharks. Education about, conservation of, sharks.

The website has  wallpaper, games, a shop, a quiz (...yes, I did it, and ended up "the most dominant and aggressive shark known to man" which has actually slightly damaged my self esteem), you name it, they’ve got it. Considering Ms. Mills  mentioned it, it already has one fan, so I went on Facebook to find more.

Shark Week 2010  has 2516 fans to date! I figure if we had a Kiwi Week 2010, we could totally beat that, considering that most people don’t differentiate between ‘the kiwi’ (as in flightless bird, national symbol) and ‘a Kiwi’ (flightless humans, populate New Zealand.)

For Kiwi Week, I propose we take it to the streets, which would already be beating Shark Week, considering that if they took sharks to the streets a lot of people would start having Jaws flashbacks and they’d most likely have to work therapy and free fish and chips into the US healthcare reform.

In order to take it to the streets, there would have to be some rules established as to what constitutes a Kiwi, and everyone would have to follow those rules. For instance, the wearing of Uggs or jandals during Kiwi Week would be acceptable, as would some sort of black clothing with a large white or silver fern painted on it. A demonstrable fascination with netball, rugby, or A World Cup (pick one, any one), would be appreciated, as well as the ability to converse knowledgeably on what John Key, Paul Henry or Samantha Hayes is up to lately.

Anybody with the ability to say, in Kiwi, “How’s ut go-un, mate”, “Yeah, nah”, “That wus jus Fruck-in A”, “Shut, bro” and “Then John Campbell said, it was Marvulus”, gets automatic entry into any pub of their choice, a voucher for free air travel on any public holiday weekend, and a get out of jail free pass for calling in with “a migraine” on a Friday or Monday.

Activities would include the “Chuck a pie at Brian Tamaki” booth, the “Queen St Power Walkers Association Marathon”, the “Wellington Scavenger Hunters Mega All Star Hunt” (celebrity guest star Phil Goff), some sort of NZ Idol/ NZ’s Next Top Model/ NZ’s Hottest Home Baker sing-model-cook off, and a prize for the “Kiwiest” Kiwi.

Flybuys points for guessing the weather and getting it right would abound, the price of milk and cheese would drop to a reasonable rate for the week, and as long as you have some sort of affinity for Vegemite (even a pretend affinity), you get to be a Kiwi, even if it’s just for the week.

Everyone would go home with the warm fuzzy feeling completely unlike the one you would normally associate with sharks, having learnt a little something about being Kiwi.

Or, you know. We could just chuck on a couple of docos. Education about, conservation of, kiwis.

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