We Don’t Know How Lucky We Are

Sumangali.org’s recent musings on Englishness, or eccentricity really—for the two in this particular instance are painted indistinguishable—has led me directly to ponder come celebrate the woolly-brained, cockamamie qualities of my own nation, perhaps not so distant in heart from England—all be we as distant as it is possible geographically.

Not so distant in blood either. New Zealand was fifty percent settled by migrants from“Old Blighty,” a key difference of these shaky, Antipodean Isles from colonial Australia, and the origin of our“New Zild” accent, with it’s flattened“i” and resemblance to the dialects of southern England of several hundred years ago.

To celebrate New Zealand’s eccentricity, and the British progenitor from which it directly descends, here then is the unofficial anthem of New Zealand, We Don’t Know How Lucky We Are, as sung/performed by comedian and cultural icon John Clarke a.k.a. Fred Dagg, and featuring almost everybody who is anybody in New Zealand, including:

  • one Prime Minister,
  • one leader of a political party,
  • a cricket legend,
  • a New Zealand cricket captain,
  • a rugby legend,
  • an All Black captain,

and actors and artists too numerous and not famous to mention.

God Defend New Zealand indeed.

(If you spot anybody else in the video, or want to try naming any the above, don’t be shy and leave a comment).

  • Shardul
    Posted at 23:22h, 11 May

    Strewth! It’s good to see old Fred again mate – he’s a cracker!

    Fred Dagg brought a rather funny light to the seventies. I used to listen to him on the wireless during breakfast before heading off to dreary old school. He would crack on about all sorts of things – the weather, politics of course (it was during the height of the Muldoon era), his neighbours the Bayliss’, everyday events like storms, floods, sharing sheep and milking cows. He sounded like a couple of my Uncles – and I enjoyed his show immensely. I think he appealed to a wide range of Kiwis – I guess he sounded like everybody’s Uncles really. A highlight for me was when I went to see him live with a bunch of mates in the mid-70’s at the old His Majesty’s Theatre before it was knocked down. We also saw Split Enz there. It was a great show and we all talked like him for about two weeks afterwards. Even at school!

    Anyway, she’ll be right cobber! See you at smoko…

  • Shardul
    Posted at 23:47h, 11 May

    Wow man – you’re so retro! We had a B&W too – with a remote believe it or not. My Dad was so proud of it. It was on a long cable and had volume nob with a single ear plug as well! All the mod cons… Perhaps he had made it himself – he was a bit of a ‘Joe 90’ – as we called people in those days who had a fascination for the emerging reality of electronics. That B&W TV was still in the house when I left home – all the other houses had colour probably. Not that I watched it – by then I had discovered motorcycles and the open road…

  • alf
    Posted at 23:25h, 11 May

    Clark is on a current affairs program here every week. He is excellent.
    They just don’t make songs like that anymore, it seems we are too self conscious to enjoy our own buffoonery in the Antipodes these days.

  • Jaitra Gillespie
    Posted at 23:30h, 11 May

    Thanks Alf and Shardul. I must confess I’m a little too young to have seen Fred Dagg in his hey-day—he had “crossed the ditch” to Australia by the time I was old enough to know how to operate the TV remote (actually our TV didn’t have a remote, and was B&W).

    Buffoonery however, Antipodean or otherwise, is always welcome here at Sensitivity to Things.

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