Life, love and happiness

Oh for inspiration, for vision, for boldness and for a political party that has not only counted the pennies but has done the preparation and is ready to fly once it has the power. The steady-as-she-goes budget was hardly inspiring, it could have been devised by Bill English.

It was boldness be my enemy. And where are the foundations for the houses? After nine years in opposition why are there still no foundations laid yet? And a rethink about education policy? Come on! If I were a teacher assessing the coalition’s performance on housing and education after term one I would say, ‘Johnny Coalition tries hard once he gets going but his preparation is woefully inadequate and he. . .’ How do you tell a mother that her son just does not have it and is not likely to get it?

But I have to confess that a teacher assessing my performance would say, ‘Christopher is distracting other children by grinding his teeth, which he does a lot, and while his expectations of himself are not difficult to achieve, his expectations of others are ridiculously unrealistic, which is why he will always be disappointed as well as disappointing.’

But read on regardless: Given the sorry state of my expectations and the fact that my teeth are now no bigger than my five-year-old grandson’s teeth, I decided to make a mid-year resolution.

Why oh why, I ask myself, do I make a hell of awakening to Morning Report on National Radio every morning? I have extremely low expectations of our national television stations so why not go for gold?

Now I know that as a rabid republican I will be dismissed as a turncoat when I admit I watched the royal wedding on the telly, but I can’t help it if I like parades. Anyway, it was while watching the highlights on television news that it hit me: I’m watching the news on the telly and I feel happy. No teeth grinding, no yelling obscenities at the presenters, I was happy because half the news was taken up not by murder and mayhem and misery and tears but colour, music, harmonious joy, a celebration of life! Which is definitely not what you get on Morning Report.

So, not that I’m a classical music fan, on the contrary I’m as ignorant as they come on that score,  but I have noticed that when by accident I found myself listening The lark ascending, I stopped grinding my teeth, my facial muscles relaxed, my forehead released its corrugations and, dare I even think it? I felt almost tranquil. So I’m going to switch to the Concert Programme in the morning and see what kind of mood Daybreak has in store for me.

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Chris Horan

Chris is a former social worker, probation officer and Family Court counsellor, living in Hawea in the South Island.