My neighbour Don, the Philosophy graduate, knocked on my door before 7 a.m. this morning.He had experienced an epiphany. a Eureka! moment and he wanted to pass it on.
""They've started already!" he declared, "Those B***** (people with peculiar sexual habits) at Auckland Yacht Club! They've already got billions out of us taxpayers and now they've got their fists out for another 1.3 BILLION to fund the next challenge, because they lost the cup and they won't be getting all the boat building business they were expecting.".
" Ï've got an idea for a story for you."
Neighbour Don is an exremely intelligent man, widely read and a great raconteur, but his skills are verbal, he chooses not to slog through hours of writing like I do. This is the story line he gave me:
"You are a writer. You have been researching and following the crews on Emirates New Zealand and Oracle. You have spent four years gathering information and have nearly completed THE GREAT NEW ZEALAND NOVEL When it hits the bookstores it will earn millions.. That's from the film rights alone. The final chapter was to have been the triumph in San Francisco.
"But we lost and your book is down the gurgler. So you send a demand to Trade and Industry for 1.3 billion dollars to reimburse you for all your wasted expenditure and lost revenue." He stomped off , springer spaniel at his heels, heading for the beach.
He has a point. Yachting is a great sport, but what went on in San Francisco was entertainment not sport. Those who invested in Team New Zealand were taking a gamble. They lost. If I bet $10 on a racehorse and it loses I do not expect the TAB to refund my stake do I?
But I hope some of our gifted young writers do write something fictional based on Team New Zealand. What about a whodunnit based on the plotting behind the scenes; Nicky Harger please get busy.
Or a folk tale, Team New Zealand a crew of divinely handsome heroes, like King Arthu's lot. They train and practice until they sail that yacht with the superb efficiency of a formula one racing car. They counter the mutterings and plottings of the villainous Oracle gang who are all descended from Cinderlla's stepmother
At the last race the yachts are bow to bow when Oracle, using some dastardly ploy while sniggering into their moustaches, stops Team New Zealand dead in the water. Without hesitation Dean Barker and his merry men leap overboard, settle the yacht on to their superbly muscled shoulders and walk on the waters of San Francisco Bay to the finish line, calling a cheery greeting to Oracle as they stroll past.
Pity Margaret Mahey is no longer with us.