Thursday, 24 May 2007

Two heroes; one prize.

Over at SOLO, Lindsay Perigo has news of two heroes. The second gets to win some money. The first is "a quite extraordinary fellow" that appeared on television the other night (no, I didn't see him, though I wish I had):
He once went tramping and got lost. For several nights he froze his posterior off. Whilst freezing he realised he and the outdoors fraternity generally needed better clothing for eventualities like this. He found his way back to town and started a business making some. Today that business is a multi-million dollar enterprise earning him a fortune, providing work for hundreds of locals, exporting all over the world.

But it doesn't end there with this fellow. He was interviewed under the gaze of a huge grizzly bear, mounted but still menacing of countenance, that was mere yards away when he shot it. He has tangled with the scariest and deadliest and lived to tell the tale— and, in many instances, eat the meat: he loves meat! He is Steve Irwin with a gun. When asked what gave him the right to shoot these animals, he laughed dismissively. When told he was not very PC, he laughed even more dismissively. His incredulous, PC interviewer quoted him as saying that commercialising animals is the best way to guarantee their survival, not their extinction. I was incredulous too, though for reasons that differed from the interviewer's!

The guy is an old-fashioned hero, a rugged individualist, an archetype of whom one sighs wistfully, "They just don't make 'em like that any more."

Or do they? This fellow's real, isn't he?

He's real—and he's rare.

Single-minded, high-minded dedication to rational values is as unusual as it is admirable.

Time was when most youngsters started out that way; nowadays even the young are steeped in cynicism and conformity. All that matters is getting along—with others whose heads are equally empty for fear of not getting along. The idea of standing up to be counted in any way whatsoever is as alien as the idea of melody in music. Yet—

"Yet ..." How rare are such people? That word and that question brings me to news of the second hero. That hero, my friends, may well be reading this now, because that hero could be you: and Perigo wants to make you 10,000 dollars richer! He explains:

[Donor Murray Lees and I are] inaugurating what I'm proud to say he's calling "The Perigo Prize" of $10,000 for a deserving New Zealand freedom-fighter. He has charged me with finding a worthy recipient. As of now, the search is on. The winning deed or deeds may not yet have been done—all New Zealanders are cordially invited to see these words as a challenge!
Nominate yourself or someone deserving at Lindsay's SOLO blog:
Calling All Heroes! Announcing the Perigo Prize

UPDATE: Ah, here's your man, and a video link to the TV interview:
He looks like a some sort of Scottish Viking, striding through mountainous terrain with his long blond hair and his kilt. But Davey Hughes is from Wainuiomata and he is a Kiwi bloke, through and through...
See the video online here at the TV3 site: 'The Wild Man From Levin.' Oh, and an extra point for any Americans reading this who can pronounce Wainuiomata correctly.


  1. Gee, but I didn't think that people could do good things, left to their own devices? A lesson for those who can't/won't see past the state.

    Thanks to Murray for his generosity.

  2. It's the Swasi clothing guy from Levin isn't it?

    I buy their premium priced products in preference to Swandri and icebreaker because they still manufacture here, have a genuine outdoor recreation ethos, and aren't pitched at "Remurea Tractor" driving poseurs.

    That their garments include a name-tag identifying the Levin machinist is a nice touch.

  3. He was fun to listen to. When asked about hunting animals he responded by saying that those animals are prey and that's their purpose (to be prey). On the other hand, he is a predator. He knows that since both his eyes face forwards...! Think about it.




1. Commenters are welcome and invited.
2. All comments are moderated. Off-topic grandstanding, spam, and gibberish will be ignored. Tu quoque will be moderated.
3. Read the post before you comment. Challenge facts, but don't simply ignore them.
4. Use a name. If it's important enough to say, it's important enough to put a name to.
5. Above all: Act with honour. Say what you mean, and mean what you say.