Matt Heath: Bring on the next big thing we can cheer for

Section
Blogs,
Publish Date
Monday, 10 July 2017, 2:23PM
Getty Images
Getty Images

The America's Cup and the Lions have provided constant excitement for months. But sadly it's all over.

So what do we all do now? All being the key word.

New Zealanders love to jump on board things as a nation. Much like Springfield. When something interesting happens everyone turns up. Mr Burns, Apu, Flanders, Smithers, Moe, Skinner, Bumblebee Man, Krusty, The Sea Captain.

I've heard a bunch of people say, ''Why does everyone suddenly love yachting, it's a rich man's sport, most of you don't even sail.' I find this attitude odd. People get into things because it excited their interested at some point. Who cares why, or for how long they are into it?

Rugby is always high profile but brief new shared national experiences are great too. Everyone has an opinion. It leads to great chats with taxi drivers, Uber drivers and strangers in lifts.

Obviously the media love it too. The endless coverage of both the Lions and America's Cup has been great. So many angles. So much entertainment. I read and watched everything.

Some people hate this side of New Zealand. Grant Smithies in his column entitled America's Cup: Not Floating My Boat.

"My issue, really, is the monumental blanket coverage such sporting contests receive via every available outlet, as if every last man, woman, child and dog in Aotearoa was riveted by this stuff. Can't we just acknowledge that we don't all love the same things, without a host of self-appointed cultural referees whipping out the 'bad kiwi' red card?"

Bah humbug. Not giving a crap is everyone's right. But why bother getting annoyed at the rest of us for being into something. No matter how blanket the coverage, no one's making you read or watch it. If no one cared there would be no coverage. Lots of people do so there's a lot. If you don't care there's a whole internet of stuff out there.

Smithies is a music guy not a sport guy which is great, and his recent interview with Paul McCartney was an excellent read. Incredible revelations around the Beatles split.

Contrarians used to hate the Beatles because they were too popular ... I'm looking forward to New Zealand going Springfield crazy when Paul McCartney is in the country. Half the town will turn out. Comic Book Guy, Duffman, Selma and Patty. There'll be shots in the paper of Paul having lunch. Beatles albums racing back up the charts. Everyone's going to be so happy and proud he's in our little country. Even if he does look a bit like Droopy the "I'm Happy" Dog these days.

But back to sport. My friends and I at the Alternative Commentary Collective have been putting on live Lions events over the past few weeks. Boy oh boy have they been communical outpourings.

Jumping up and down to Darude Sandstorm with 800 people in celebration of a game of footy could be considered lame. Unless you're one of the people doing it. Then it's emotional. Especially if you have a massive head of steam up. Much better than standing outside in the cold feeling shitty about it. As the saying goes "win or lose - Darude".

So what's next for us all? With the Lions and America's Cup gone what do we all do? Game of Thrones is back on the 17th of July. Jerry Seinfeld is coming to the Spark Arena. Been wanting to see the man for years. I hope I don't die before August.

England, West Indies, Australia and Pakistan are over to play the Black Caps at the end of the year. The Spider-Man: Homecoming movie is great, there's a new Planet of the Apes, Fire in Cardboard City is coming and there are more All Blacks games after the Super Rugby. Lots of stuff for large groups of people to get into simultaneously.

New Zealand is a small country. We have limited media outlets. We have limited resources. Luckily we are a communal bunch. We like to be excited about things at the same time. We are the Springfield of the Pacific. It's a good thing. There is so few of us if we didn't get into things at the same time nothing large would ever happen.

So bring on the next big thing. I'll be there with Chief Wiggum, Carl, Lenny, Mayor Quimby and Santa's Little Helper.

This article was first published on nzherald.co.nz and is republished here with permission.