In last week's column, shocked by the amount of wanton negativity in New Zealand media, I swore I'd be more positive in my life and in this column too.
I promised to talk up three things each week for a month.
Obviously no one read that column. Why would you? Positivity is boring. No one wants soft takes when there are so many high profile hot takers.
But I don't care. I'm not doing this for glory or gain. I don't expect the universe to reward me for writing a few nice things.
Having said that, I didn't expect the universe to punish me for it.
Yet on day one of being nice, my dog Colin vomited right in the doorway of a busy cafe.
A huge smelly frothy mound right beside a bunch of breakfast diners trying to eat their smashed avocados.
The puke was likely caused by a rotten sausage he found and ate up by the flying fox in Grey Lynn Park.
The whole thing was very embarrassing for my two young sons and I. But not for Colin, he thought it was funny. Wagging his tail and panting, he was proud of his massive chuck. Better out than in I guess.
My boys and I got down on our knees and started cleaning it up with napkins. But before we could finish the job something truly shocking happened. A dude stepped in it.
What are the chances the next person walking in wouldn't be wearing shoes?
He stood right in the vom and didn't even notice. I couldn't bring myself to tell him. Neither could any of the other diners. In fact most of us were sniggering.
He left with a flat white and a vomit-covered right foot. How he didn't feel it, I will never know. Cold feet?
The moral of the story? If you are going to try positivity, you have to do it for humanity's sake. You can't expect the universe to reward you. Do it because it's the right thing to do.
Some people believe it was a negativity-induced karma backlash that caused Mike Hosking to crash his red $140,000 Alfa Romeo 4C last week.
I don't agree. I believe he crashed because he was going really fast.
The universe is indifferent. It doesn't consciously reward or punish people. Only humans can do that.
With that in mind. Here are my positive things for the week, no reward required.
Positive one. Last Tuesday that surprise storm had me sheltering inside. I was terrified as one of my windows was blown out and into the neighbour's yard.
Yet city-wide all kinds of emergency response personnel, firefighters and police were heading out to help others. They ran out as we ran in. Their hard work allowed me and my dog to sit in the dark in front of a warm fire. No power but happy to be where we were listening to the sirens outside. Great New Zealanders.
Positive two. These people have brought joy to the nation: Dawkins, Walsh, Pascoe, Ratcliffe, Bond, Edwards, King, Liti, Barber, Robinson, Adams, McCartney and many more in that Kiwi Comm Games team.
TVNZ did an incredible job bringing those heroes to us. You can't please everyone. Decisions had to be made. But most of the complaints were from people who hadn't worked out the online streaming options.
Tech-wise it was an impressive job from TVNZ and how about the talent. Streety, Peter ' P Willy' Williams, Saville, Heveldt, Clarkson Nee Coffin, me, my mate Mike and the rest. Sure some of you didn't like the adverts. But that's why it was free.
Positive three. Waking Up with Sam Harris makes the world smarter. It's an intense intellectual podcast delivered in a soothing voice, Listened to by millions. It will make you think, question and ironically help you get to sleep. Episode #119 — Hidden Motives with Robin Hanson - describes accurately what I'm actually doing in this column. Sam's probably coming to New Zealand this year. Can't wait.
There you go. Week two of being positive. Please send me your positive stuff and I'll add it next week. Together we can change the world just a tiny bit. No reward required. Positive for positivity's sake. Having said that, if I've got it wrong and the universe does care, feel free to karma gift me a red $140,000 Alfa Romeo 4C of my own to crash. I've earned it.
This article was first published on nzherald.co.nz and is republished here with permission.