Prepared to go to any length to meet star
Mia Nelson's friends back home in Seattle think she is best mates with Flight of the Conchords' stars already, so she had to take the chance to meet Bret McKenzie at the premiere of his Invercargill-set movie Two Little Boys.
Unfortunately, she feels the only way she can be sure of meeting him would be to attract his attention by winning the mullet competition at the premiere.
So out went her lovingly cultivated long black hair, replaced by the hacked back bogan look made famous by the less fashion conscious. She is sure it will be worth it.
"I think I'm going to win," she said.
She became a McKenzie fan after the Conchords' hit television series. "I love them. It'll be really exciting to meet one of them.
"In the United States Flight of the Conchords is massive. If anyone knows about New Zealand it's Lord of the Rings or Flight of the Conchords."
Because Americans think New Zealand is a bit smaller than it actually is, they had no difficulty believing she had become best friends with McKenzie and his fellow Conchord, Jemaine Clement.
"I've told them we ride around on sheep together," she said.
Miss Nelson moved to Invercargill with her partner, an Aucklander who lived in the US.
He wanted to go to the Southern Institute of Technology, but she was expecting a more tropical climate, after she visited Northland for a family wedding.
"I thought it would be totally awesome and warm down here," she said.
She is working as Invercargill Mayor Tim Shadbolt's personal assistant, and her haircut became a point of conversation at the Invercargill City Council offices, with pro and anti-mullet funds established. "‘They were saying ‘You can't cut your hair, it's so beautiful' and gave me money not to do it."
Having had the cut at the Venom hair salon, she said she has become attached to it.
"I could be starting the next new trend. People are pretty divided on it so far . . . [they] either say ‘Oh my God what