It was very robust and challenging selection process and a great learning experience. I had a real good crack and reckon I didn't do too badly for a rank outsider before being drafted out at the final gate and sent back to pasture.
Like any young Southland teenager my life's goals were simple, Play for the Stags, appear in a Speight's advert and become some form of politician most likely a Mayor or MP.
Unfortunately a lack size and skill stripped derailed my rugby career but I have managed to contribute as the Stags commercial and marketing manager for the last 2.5 years.
I was lucky enough to be chosen to accompany the Speight's Ale House to London in 2007 as part of the ‘Great Beer Delivery’ and subsequently appeared in a couple of adverts for my favourite drop.
When I heard Bill English was stepping down as our electorates MP late last year I thought this could be my chance to knock off number 3.
I was asked, almost in bemusement by people who know me why would you want to be a politician? , political correctness and suit wearing, that's not you! 100% correct, I like most kiwis am happiest when the government gets out of my way and lets me get on with life. I think we need to spend more time trying to find less for them to do rather than constantly coming up with new ways they can impose on our lives then charge us for the privilege.
I always have seen politicians as a necessary evil and not once during the National Party Selection process did I ever want to become ‘just another politician’. I often used the line "I'm just a person who loves where he lives and wants to do a good job for those here”
For the record Todd Barclay a 23 year old from Gore won the day and I wish him all the best. He might need a bit of help boning up on our local Queenstown Issues but he's a very bright and I’m sure will be a hit with the females votes given his dapper appearance.
For me I gave up everything to be able give this 100% so for the first time in a long time I’m free from work and will go sit on a beach somewhere hot for a few weeks and ponder what’s next.
Anyone with an exciting project they need a hand on call me.
Mark write a regular column for the Mountain Scene - View HERE
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