Off The Beaten Track in Aotearoa

Post Election Blues – a survival guide

New Zealand went to the polls on Saturday. For those of you who may have missed this internationally significant event it breaks my heart to tell you the other side won.

Voting this way, Petone NZ, 2014

Faced with defeat and despair a girl needs a survival strategy. This is it.

 Declare 24 hours of mourning during which you:

  • Rant to those who love you. They listen and say they agree.
  • Get in supplies – fortification whilst in mourning is important. At the supermarket glower at anyone who looks gleeful.
  • Despite all the healthy food you now have stashed in your pantry eat peanut butter and jelly on toast for lunch . The jelly is quince and it’s red.
  • Go in to your garden. Contemplate a colour coördinated flower bed for the summer. Red roses, red carnations, red zinnias. Because red is, always has been, and always will be your favourite colour.
  • Slash back all overgrown plants. Pull every single weed, from the blooming milkweed to the tiniest, teeniest newly sprouted oxalis. Leave not one behind. As you do all this meditate upon the face of the smiling assassin and know that one day, eventually, he and his ilk will have had their day.
  • Gardening done, indulge in retail therapy. Purchase one (red) kettle – a necessity, you’ve been boiling water in a pot for days;  one set of sheets – unplanned but they’re a bargain; six bone china coffee mugs – also unplanned but they’re pretty and another bargain.
  • Hand over your card at the check-out and remember all those who are  below the poverty line in this supposed paradise and who can’t afford to shop for groceries or kettles, mugs, and sheets. Remember, and weep.
  • Rant to your sister on the telephone.
  • Read some blogs and discover you are not alone. 75% of voters might have chosen differently from you this election but you have blogging buddies out there who think similarly and are putting it into words. Begin to feel better.
  • Admire the pluck of your niece, a first time voter, who posted her reaction on Facebook, complete with salient questions, observations, and information. You, however, post to your profile only cartoons – politically pointed, angry ones.
  • Make a special trip to the shop to purchase chocolate. Scoff it!
  • Break a long-held rule and have a glass of wine (red) on Sunday night.
  • Keep the pledge made with your sister and, for the first time in your life, join a political party. This is surprisingly easy to do. Wonder why you haven’t done it before.

On Monday your personal period of mourning is over.  Get up early. Go to the gym. Punch the h*** out of that punching bag. Your gloves are red. The bag may or may not have been blue.

Your trainer says, “Wow, you landed some good ones.”

This is when you smile.

19 replies »

  1. Good way to beat the blues Jill. And wouldn’t you know it Australia only gave a few seconds coverage on the 6pm news as to who won. No in depth coverage, but then it is only NZ they are of no consequence to the media over here they would rather scare us with stories of all the radical Muslims hiding behind bushes waiting to chop our heads off….


  2. oh wow was this list greattttt – feel the pain but laughing with the excellent humor.

    and I heard that 12 year olds were allowed to vote which changed the outcome – jk – but thought I heard something on the radio about age of voters begin lowered.


    • For me laughter is always the best medicine! Hmmm – I wonder what would happen if 12yr olds did get the vote … all joking aside I think a lot of that age group might respond very well. A big part of the problem was voter apathy especially amongst the under 30s. In total one million people didn’t vote – pretty dire considering our total population is not quite 4.5 million.


  3. I saw the headlines – somewhat lost in the referendum battles here in Scotland. I just looked at Wikipedia for some background on New Zealand politics but it would be good to hear your vision of the whole thing and I’d look forward to a post on that.


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