The Tall Blacks campaign is over. I’m sad, but it’s tinged with hope, because this was largely a young team which will build anew from here, and there was something a bit magical about their play at times. But more on them later. There’s a more pressing issue which needs addressing.
The New Zealand fans. The guys above embody all the worst things about our national team supporters – particularly those overseas with the light on them. As Silvio Dante would say “disgusting”.
Where to begin? Homemade singlets, for starters. I would kill for a legit NZ singlet. They’re sponsored by f***ing Amway! That’s pretty much the top tier of absurd national team sponsors I reckon. But wife beaters and vivid? C’mon bros, step your game up. Secondly, the bowties? Is it a stag? Please let it be a stag. But even if it is, they’re at every game in that artless get-up, shaming our nation worse than Sonny ‘the rapist’ Shaw – who thankfully didn’t make the trip.
Beyond that, the haka? Jesus Christ. It’s bad enough that the Tall Blacks do one – and it’s Ka Mate, one indelibly associated with another New Zealand sports team, who they’ve already punsomely swiped the name from. But fans in the stands, all white, completely out of time, in f***ing bowties and wife beaters? Please, no. Instead, a fan of a very different age and gender lit my fire during the champs:
Rebecca-Rose pretends to be cut up about Rhiannon's demise.
A week which saw the models slough off the veneer of pleasantry which had just about been maintained through the opening rounds and pull out some good old-fashioned schoolyard bitchery. The young rose precipitously this week, while any over 20s saw their stock take a hit. Guest judge Karen Inderbitzen-Waller helped with jettisoning the good vibes, just calling it as she saw it, and the power-shifts we saw last week solidified into a new order, with some heavy implications for the old regime. Judge-wise, Colin remains amazing, Sisarich cool and even Sara is becoming vaguely tolerable.
With the elimination of Rhiannon so goes the innocence, and the first genuine contender has left the building, never to squeal “Sara mail!” again. Game on, girls.
1. (Last Week: 1) Christobelle
Another powerhouse performance from the Dio girl saw her comprehensively dominate the competition with a characteristic mix of focus and frivolity. She seems to know exactly when to turn it on, giggling her way through the make-up round before turning in a photo of international quality, and no one can doubt that she is in the box seat now. The other girls recognise it too, the extremely illuminating Q&A with an enjoyably frosty Sara saw her name emerge as the near-unanimous favourite. Just needs to be careful Ruby and Ajoh like their roles as loyal lieutenants, because if (when) they turn on her life could get ugly very quickly. Continue reading
Round three of NZ’s Next Top Model took place Friday, and after the tumult of the first couple of weeks we’re starting to see the competiton settle into some kind of order. The trash has been largely wheeled out the door and the contenders are starting to make some serious moves, so I figured it was time to launch our NZNTM power rankings.
Inspired by the ESPN’s on the NBA and LeagueHQ’s on the NRL we’re going to rank the contenders on their momentum and recent form, and try and predict who’s next in line for elimination, and see who’s making the right moves to take the whole thing out. Power rankings, for the unfamiliar, are based on form and a team’s general outlook, rather than where they might be positioned in the competition. While there’s no official ladder for NZNTM, it’s pretty clear that Teryl-Leigh would be atop it if there were, with her surfeit of wins in the first couple of weeks. Power rankings would suggest that there’s a new challenger they need to pay attention to.
She’s looked like the quiet achiever from the start, a sunny personality belying a steely determination, and she picked the right time to turn it on, with a stunning catwalk performance, and while she let herself get phased by the rigours of the makeover, she pulled it back together for the shoot. Her only issue now is that she’s clearly in everyone’s sights, those models don’t fuck around when they see someone trying to take their contract, and will be scheming for her downfall at every turn. Continue reading
Even the weather seemed in on the act as I watched on Maori TV. The rain began to fall just as the Breakers shots started to dry up. From the dizzying heights of a twenty point lead to the crushing lows of a six point loss , 103-97. The photo above says it all, the tigers fed off the carcass of the Breakers’ broken dreams.
Did they fly too close to the sun on this one? The first quarter opened with “the Bear” hitting threes and the Breakers defense looking focused, angry and eager. Up 13-0. But beneath the enthusiasm there was a sense of desperation, like a little brother determined to beat his older, stronger brother. Rickert was all fist pumps and chest bumps, even after the most menial tasks. Boucher was performing his typical demolition job on the opposition’s offense, pulling down boards and punching the ball away in the most baffling of circumstances. At one point the tigers coach told his players “he doesn’t get another fucking rebound”. Continue reading
1. Bangladesh had as many players sold as Australia, and for more combined money, at Friday’s IPL auction.
2. Amongst those unsold was Brad ‘I am not a crook’ Haddin. The current Australian ‘keeper unwanted by any of the franchises. Something tells me the rest of the world doesn’t share Ponting and Clarke’s faith in their gloveman. Australia’s getting pretty sensitive about the situation, as the fate of this banner at Adelaide proves…
It was removed not, as you’d imagine, due to the glaring absence of an apostrophe, but because it was deemed ‘offensive’ by security guards. No point in speculating about whether a banner reading ‘McCullums a lump of shit’ would’ve met the same fate…
3. Australia have now lost five ODIs in a row, for the first time since we last ruined their summer at the Chappell-Hadlee in 2007. If they drop another tonight at the SCG (a track where our loss-win ratio is a comparitively decent 2:1, and one that takes turn) it’ll tie their record for most consecutive losses. Should they drop the next two we’ll overtake them for third in the ODI rankings, where they sit after starting the year in first. This prospect so terrifies them that… Continue reading
Hair is heaven’s water flowing eerily over us
– Bill Knott
A big year for hair in sports, due in large part to the efforts of one man who took it all on his shoulders. Literally.
Back in March of 2002, a journalist for the University of Wisconsin’s campus paper The Daily Cardinal wrote this about Kirk Penney:
“Kirk Penney looks to me like the kind of guy who goes in to get his hair cut every two or three weeks. He looks like the kind of guy who puts at least some time into his hair every morning and I think anyone who does that harbors some feelings of insecurity.”
The article is interesting as it paints Penney as an athlete who maintained his hairstyle with strict and unwavering discipline. In 2002, he sported what could be described as an American-style crew(esque) cut, short back & sides with a little room to manoeuvre on top – classic, sharp, focused, with military undertones.
So as the 2008 NBL season began, it was a surprise (a sexy surprise) to see that Kirk Penney had unleashed the beast in the off-season, allowing his hair to express itself as freely on the scalp as Kirk does on the hardwood. Penney appeared to be giving no firm directive to his hair – he was saying to the hair “you go out there and play your natural game. I have faith in you, I know you will make the right play”. Continue reading