Steve Goble

Choose life. (Deuteronomy 30:19)

After Yves and I had gone out and stuffed ourselves on Friday night, it was time for World Vision's annual kiwi fundraiser the 40-Hour famine. It means...well you can figure it out.

I began at 10pm as I presented this week's edition of That Friday Feeling on Hope City FM. I highlighted on the show how using this stunt to empathise with real famine victims was really alot of nonsense, for at least 2 reasons.

i. We were still allowed to consume barley sugar, fruit juice (sponsored by Just Juice!) and water, and
ii. I knew I would be eating again in 40 hours time.

Fortunately I had found some barley sugar a while back.

Despite the large bowl of rice, 6" Subway sandwich, biscuit and smoothie that I'd earlier enjoyed with Yves, by the time I got back after my show, I was already hungry again. No hot chocolate that night.

Saturday would be tougher. 5 hours' sleep gave way to a breakfast of no Weet-Bix, Skippy's or fruit, and the prospect of a long day puppeteering for Triangle TV. On the way there, I came by 3 sweets that looked like barley sugar, but I never had them.

Upon arriving (in the brilliantly named "Pigeon Mountain Road"), as is so often the way on film-sets, there was nothing to do but stand around forever. Electing to manage my time effectively, I efficiently lay-down on the grass outside and turned my 5-hour night into an 8-hour one. Upon awaking at lunchtime, I watched everyone else enjoying their buns, but at least found some orange juice to enjoy. Maybe I broke the rules here. There were bits in it.

After a stint playing a monkey called Rascal, we struck the set and all went home, ultimately shooting the rest 3 weeks' later at Te Tuhi Arts Centre in Pakuranga. Incredibly, they tried to pay me for being a Rascal and sleeping, but as always I refused it. World Vision were in the right place at the right time though.

After praying in Albert Park, I realised the absence of a meal that evening was leaving me with a huge vat of spare time. I went into Borders and read the final 10 chapters of Tony Hawks' book "Playing the Moldovans at Tennis."Aside from the first chapter (which was previewed at the end of Tony's previous book) I've read the entire thing at this shop, to the point where I've actually been leaving a bookmark in it.

The bet Tony takes on in this book, is to beat the entire Moldovan football tennis. The language barrier makes for far less dialogue than in Tony's previous betting travelogue Round Ireland With A Fridge. I'm not knocking it though. This bet was clearly a much tougher challenge for him, not least because his success depended upon the willing agreement of eleven specific people who he'd never met. Apathy from any one of these eleven total strangers could lose him the whole thing. In the end, it's the careless arrogance of those around the players that threatens his innocent enterprise. If only the players' unaffected managers would just stop interfering and leave well alone, then everyone would be happy. The book also reminded me of my own time in Romania. Yep, I'd recommend it, but not at the price Borders are charging! 8 out of 10.

More on Tony Hawks' books at

Come late evening, I was getting a bit headachey, but it was no big deal. And I did lose my balance a bit in the lift.

During the night, the clocks went back, quite inconsiderately turning my enterprise into a 41-Hour Famine. In fact, if I stop rounding minutes up, it was really a 42-Hour one.

I knew Sunday morning would be interesting - I had to finish things with a 3-hour housekeeping shift. In the kitchen at 10am I quickly downed 2 pints of water, and immediately regretted it. Working for the next 3 hours was no big deal, but paradoxically I did sweat an awful lot. And my throat was dry. But I still didn't really feel very hungry.

Went to the Salavation Army's Korean church service (or the end of it at least) as usual, and afterwards I was rescued from my famine as we all (about 40 of us) sat down together to enjoy a Korean meal. My room-mate Alex, who's a chef, had advised me that my stomach would have shrunk, and that a load of rice might not be the best thing for it to suddenly deal with. Too bad!

Afterwards I had intended to walk the half-hour across to Edge City Church in Ponsonby, but got distracted by the S.A.'s prayer room, in which I spent about 4 hours instead, mainly reading The Prayer Of Jabez, by Bruce Wilkinson.

The Prayer Of Jabez by Bruce Wilkinson

Great. Liked it. 9 out of 10. (I re-read it a week later out loud)

Returning to the hostel, I had a bag of left-over rice from the church on me, Michelle gave me 2 slices of Pizza, a complete stranger came up to me with a chicken, rice and veg meal and I welcomed a whole weekend of hot chocolate.

In conclusion, spending 40 hours eating nothing, and carrying on with life as normal, was really no big deal. But it did raise $20.75 for World Vision. But as I always maintain about these fund-raising drives, if people can afford it, why don't they just give it?

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2 comment(s):

At 2:56 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Steve, people don't give because they need emotional attachments to compel them to give and it's easier to deal with these emotions once annually rather than allowing ones heart to be broken continually by the hurt in this world.

It needs to change.

At 7:25 am, Blogger Steve Goble said...

Thanks servant.

Yes, it would be hard for one's heart to be broken continually.

Just as it is for those who need our help.


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