Saturday, November 22, 2008


What follows is, for me, the best story of the 2008 election campaign. Unfortunately I wasn't there to witness the occasion but quite a few people that I know well were there so I can vouch for this tale's authenticity.

In the last moments of the campaign, as matters were reaching their frenetic conclusion, a group of reporters were camped outside National Party Leader John Key's Parnell residence in the hope of catching a quick stand-up interview with him. A semi-functioning member of society driving by felt the need to wind down his window and hurl some abuse at the esteemed members of the aforesaid fourth estate.

Unfortunately for this news critic he made his colourful outburst in full view of a member of the Diplomatic Protection Squad who dutifully took down the registration details of the man's car and made some discreet enquiries.

It turned out the critic was on company time and driving his company car when he was expounding his opinions on the media. It also turned out his boss was less than impressed with his behaviour and not at all happy about finding out about via the agency tasked with protecting the Prime Minister and the man aspiring to her job.

So a little later that same morning our hero had did walk of shame, returned to the scene of his verbiage, and made a humble apology to the assembled reporters.

As a reporter I like the way it all panned out. In this job abuse is frequent, praise is rare, and apologies nigh well unheard of.

So big ups to the DPS, and the lesson to be learned: don't f**k with them.

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