New Zealand’s Quote of the Year finalists announced

The annual search for New Zealand’s Quote of the Year has arrived, reminding Kiwis of some of the wisecracks and one-liners that have punctuated our eventful year.

They include an infamous slip of the tongue from a Government minister, a toddler’s hilarious f-bomb and an inspirational promise from the young New Zealander who won the respect of the nation.

The list, compiled by Massey University, is now open for voting until Sunday.

Massey University Speech Writing specialist and competition organiser Dr Heather Kavan says: “This year’s entries were replete with jibes at everything from Judith Collins’ character to the blood moon eclipse, with some very human moments in between.”

Kavan noted that there was one quote that the assembled panel of experts all immediately agreed on.

She said that Chris Hipkins’ “spread their legs” reference had managed to find its way into the national consciousness in a way that official messaging had not.

“The line rallied more people than the ‘team of five million’ slogan, inspiring tweets and photos with the #spreadyourlegs hashtag, as well as merchandise. Dr Ashleigh Bloomfield’s unforgettable eyebrow-raise enhanced the effect,” Kavan said.

The top ten

• 1) “It is a challenge in high-density areas for people to get outside and spread their legs.” Covid-19 response minister Chris Hipkins’ slip of the tongue.

• 2) “He is about as exciting as the Taihape public toilets.” Commentator Mike Williams on Christopher Luxon.

• 3) “It was like a half-sucked Oddfellow in the sky.” TV presenter Mark Richardson describing the first blood moon lunar eclipse in 40 years.

• 4) “If I can’t be cured, I’ll be the cure.” Jemima Gazley on why she crowd-funded for research on the cancer that later ended her life.

• 5) “That was a bed-time fail.” Jacinda Ardern after daughter Neve interrupts her Facebook live.

• 6) “We’ve got an economy that’s running on a sugar hit.” David Seymour on how borrowed money increases New Zealand’s gross domestic product.

• 7) “Does anyone know if the tinny house in Aro will be open during level 4?” (Name withheld) post on community Facebook page Vic Deals. Wellington District Police hilariously responded with the eyes emoji, showing the post had not gone unnoticed.

• 8) “Who is going to do a Berocca in the morning?”MP Anna Lorck in Parliament.

• 9) “Hey Judith, it’s not that bad. Raise an eyebrow, to show you’re glad.” Jono and Ben’s song to Judith Collins.

• 10) “No, it’s a f***ing goat.” Toddler mimics her mum’s description of a goat in her garden.

Votes are open here until Sunday.

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