This fairly dull photo of the day offers an excellent opportunity to talk about something else:
Although they look like an old, tired pair of sparkly shoes, they’re actually all that currently exists of my Sevens costume. That’s right, party people: we’re going to the Wellington Sevens. You can expect some good photos of the day from that weekend.
For those who may not know about it, the Wellington Sevens is part of the international IRB Sevens circuit. For those who are still confused: Sevens is an abbreviated form of rugby union, where there are only seven players on each team and each half lasts for only seven members – until you get to the final, where the halves are ten minutes long. It’s a very fast game and tends to be played by young, fit guys who haven’t yet made the step up to the traditional fifteen-a-side game (or by guys who just love travelling the world and playing really fast rugby, without much in the way of tackles). All of the tournaments in the IRB circuit are good fun if you like rugby, but the Wellington tournament is in a league of its own because the entire crowd dresses up in silly costumes and goes completely troppo for the two days over which it is held.
To illustrate what I mean, here’s a news story about last year’s Sevens tournament. And here’s a story about the year before – follow the links in both cases and you’ll see some excellent costumes. It is no exaggeration to say that most of Wellington views the Sevens weekends as one of the highlights of the year – even if people don’t go to the tournament itself, they know that the entire city will be buzzing (and I’ve just read that the tournament pumps $15.6m into the Wellington economy, so it’s no wonder that the locals love it). This popularity means that tickets sell out at breakneck speed, with all of them being snapped up for this year’s tournament in around three minutes.
However, your faithful writer was like a ninja on the laptop when the tickets were released, and managed to buy six of them for only $195 per ticket – pretty decent when you consider that this is for two full days of entertainment, and we’ll be under cover if it rains. So I’m heading along there in three weeks time with my crew: T Rex, my sister Vickie, my common law bro-in-law, Andrew, my long-term friend Dorday, and her partner, Grant (token Aussie). Dorday and Grant are coming over from Sydney for the weekend, which is jolly decent of them. And my birthday is at the end of the weekend (on the Monday – my birthday is on a public holiday, because I really am very important), so it’s going to be good times all round.
Now, the first challenge of the Sevens is getting tickets: the second challenge is choosing a theme for the costumes. A party of six is not easy to dress, and we were almost ready to go down the ‘all just wear the same thing’ route, but then Vickie/Andrew had a great idea (and I’m giving them equal credit because I can’t remember which one thought of it and I don’t want to see sulky faces): The Wizard of Oz. In the absence of any other sensible ideas, we all agreed that this was an excellent plan.
The cast of characters will be as follows:
- The Scarecrow: Tristan. I need to make him a suitably raggedly outfit.
- The Tin Man: Andrew. He’s already bought a silver lycra jump suit, apparently.
- The Cowardly Lion: Grant. He’s going to need to figure out some kind of summer lion outfit if he wants to avoid heat exhaustion.
- Glinda the Good Witch
- The Wicked Witch of the West
The chaps’ characters were easy to allocate: Andrew really wanted to wear a silver lycra jump suit, and Tristan can easily be the scarecrow if he doesn’t shave or brush his hair for a couple of days. And Grant is short and has sandy-coloured hair and freckles – some characters just cast themselves.
It turns out that the ladies’ characters were also easy to allocate: Vickie will be Dorothy (she insisted and I knew better than to argue with her). I think she’s going to rent her costume. I’m trying to convince her to wear it to work that day, but she’s not keen. Her dedication to her costume is unlimited, though: she was thinking about getting her hair cut a while ago, but remembered that she’d need it to be long enough to wear in plaits. She needs to find a toy dog to play Toto. No, Tui isn’t going to audition for the role.
Dorday and I will be witches (Dorday is quite short and could be a munchkin, but I can see why that wouldn’t be appealing).
I shall be Glinda the Good Witch, in a pink fluffy dress, sparkly shoes (finally, the reason for today’s photo is explained), a crown, a magic wand, curly hair and a winsome expression on my face. This means that I have everything I need for my costume – except a pink fluffy dress, a crown, a magic wand, and a winsome expression on my face.
Dorday shall be The Wicked Witch of the West. I sold her on this idea by saying that she should be a slinky, sexy witch in a little black dress – as long as she has a bit of green on her face and wears a witch’s hat, and carries a flying monkey, I’m sure we’ll all know who she is. Actually, the worst day for all of us will be the first day of the tournament, when our Dorothy is still at work for the first few hours and we’re forced to roam around without our main character. Vickie’s suggested that we might like to carry a photo of her or something, like she’s our Dear Leader.
Anyway, it should all be great fun. I really do need to get our costumes sorted, though (and make Dorday a flying monkey of some description). We may revisit this whole costume topic. We could just buy or rent them all, but where’s the fun in that?