The secret diary of . . . Geoff Robinson's co-hosts
OPINION: Mornings won't be the same. Neither will reports. Or the bird call. Here's to you, Mr Robinson. We'll miss you more than you will know.
Geoff Robinson has quit after 35 years presenting Morning Report! I feel faint. Dizzy. The room is spinning. I wish it would stop. But it won't. It hasn't for years. In fact I think the last time I felt calm was when I presented Morning Report alongside Geoff.
He was like a nice hot cup of tea. But not too hot. Lukewarm, actually. And sugary. And very milky. But he didn't approve of stirring, or tea, come to think of it. He was more like a sweet lukewarm cup of milk.
I was Ying to his Yang. And the experience has stood me in good stead. As the National MP for Auckland's beautiful North Shore, I see my role in parliament as someone who gets the spoon out, and whacks it against the saucer so that it provides a senseless noise. Then I add a vigorous twist of lemon, and shake the breakfast tray. People say to me on the street, "What exactly is it that you do, dear?" And I tell them, "I'm very proud to serve as a storm in a teacup."
Whereas, of course, Labour are a dose of poison. In the garden of politics, they're a chemical spray that stunts growth. I loathe them with a passion that crosses the herbaceous border into hysteria. But right now I want to put aside my trowel and my weird, bitter rage, and say to Geoff Robinson: we'll miss you.
According to information in the media, which is of course not to be trusted, or believed for a second, because it's all a sordid, creeping left-wing conspiracy, Geoff Robinson has quit after 35 years presenting Morning Report.
If there's a modicum of truth in that claim then it behoves us all to think about my role as the last towering intellect in state broadcasting. When I presented Morning Report alongside Geoff, I was Yang to his Ying. But when I left, he was never the same again. None of us were. We must all try and get on as best we can. We must even step out of the shadow I cast from a great height, and say to Geoff Robinson: we'll miss you.
So. Geoff Robinson has quit after 35 years presenting Morning Report. Left the building. Gone outside and he may be some time. I know what that's like. We had dinner outside on the deck tonight. One of life's great joys. The taste of a good wine, the sound of my voice expressing the usual narrow range of cheap and nasty prejudices - who doesn't love those things.
I remember presenting Morning Report alongside Geoff. I was his Yang as well as his Ying. I don't really know what he brought to the table. I'd say, "OK, and we cross live now to our correspondent in the teeming hellhole that is Dubai in the dark continent of Africa." And he'd say, "Dubai's actually a very wealthy city in the Middle East." Pathetic, really.
I got out of there as soon as I could. Moved to Auckland. Awesome city. Who doesn't love the Sky Casino. Gambling is perfect. As for Geoff Robinson, I don't think there's any doubt that he misses me.
Geoff's quit. 35 years! Legend. Good bastard. He'll be missed.
Thirty. Five. Years. Think about it. That's one more year than thirty. Four. Years. I presented Morning Report alongside Geoff back in the day and again this year. He hadn't changed. He was just as expert, just as witty, just as professional. And just as calm. I wonder what it was he put in his tea. It was a strange looking drink.
Mornings won't be the same. Neither will reports. Or the bird call. Actually the bird call will always sound just as lovely. But it won't have Geoff announcing it. Here's to you, Mr Robinson. We'll miss you more than you will know.
Steve Braunias is a Metro staff writer.
- Sunday Star Times