Thursday, 29 January 2015


Hey guys! Over 2014 and early 2015 I had loads of really cool chances to give a couple of cool speeches like at the Hauraki Gulf Marine Forum, at my college or in a local speech contest. But the speech I most enjoyed giving was this one.

This was the speech I gave at MAD Marine 2015 and its about how conservation is creative and individual. To any one reading this from MAD thanks for the reception I got and I hope Isucceeded in giving a bit of inspiration.

To anyone reading from other places I've left all the MAD references in but take what you want from the speech, and I hope it means something to you.

I’ve learnt many things at MAD, I’ve learnt how to function on practically no sleep, how important flour is to a cake recipe after trying to help Cate with dessert in 2013, I’ve learnt I'm allergic to bee stings, I still haven’t learnt how to get out a kayak without tipping it, but  i have learnt how far a bit of inspiration goes and that what I'm going to try to give.
The land, the environment, the whenua. It is practically pointless for me to stand here and attempt to tell you why you should protect it, for most of us have already worked that out and we all want it protected for different reasons. Maybe for food and resources, keeping a certain mountain or coastal scene alive so we can one day show our grandchildren or perhaps just so every Saturday morning on our drive to football we can pass a wetlands alive with birdsong. My point is it is all for different reasons for i may find beauty in the horizon over the southern alps but you may find beauty and solace when looking at the bottom of the Kermadec trench. Therefore i wish not to press upon you what conservation is to me, but rather attempt to explain what conservation is to all of us, as humans and what it needs to mean. I want to show you that conservation is creative, something controlled by us, as unique and creative individuals.
Conservation is defined as belong the action of conserving something in particular; it might be an artefact or a historical manuscript. Although in my case, and indeed our case, it is the environment around us. And inspiration is defined as being a sudden timely or brilliant idea. I see a connection between these two words. Here we are a bunch of teenagers, and some slightly older than teenagers, sitting on an island in our summer holidays, and many of us wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. Something has made us want to come here, to make the difference we will all make. We are not here out of peer pressure or for popularity because everyone else is doing it. We are here because it is what we feel to be right. And it is this wonderful optimism, and love of the environment and the ocean, which has brought us here, a wonderful, creative group.
And it is here, on this island and within all of us, where our ides are beginning to seed and take root. An idea, that long sought light bulb moment in the middle of a physics exam or anxiously opening every mental  folder you have looking for a definition when writing a chemistry paper. And  It is all controlled by one important complex.
People used to tell me i thought with my head not my heart, and i used to be offended. Now, i realise the heart doesn’t really think, and to think with the brain is vitally important and being told your using it is a fulfilling compliment. Although bringing your heart along is important too. So firstly, congratulations on all using your brain so far i assure you that by the time you step off the ferry it will immensely overworked and you will require a lot of sleep. But secondly, we cant begin to conserve our environment, without some big ideas and big brain action. You see, we are the heirs of the first generation to know about climate change, the torch has been passed to us, and now we have the chance to do something with it. Like use its metaphoric flame to be the spark that will set the world on fire with our brilliance. This flame is pretty cool, its invisible, like a superhero, but my bet is, that even though you’ve never seen it you all have a mental image of that torch. Or if you didn’t you do now that ive mentioned it, mine looks an Olympic torch but yours might be Indiana jones style and be a wooden torch. Or you might’ve gone even further and its some engineering marvel made of some new artificially made metal and does cool stuff like pick up rubbish. You only have these images, because your all balls of creativity with ideas brimming and bubbling more than witches cauldron.  And the brains pretty important for all of this, for creativity is not a fixed ability, no one person has the exclusive ability to have an idea, we all have that ability. The thalamus is the switchboard. The hypothalamus is in control of homeostasis. the limbic system is emotions headquarters. The frontal cortex is executive decision making. There are multiple lobes all responsible for things like memory, speech or the recognition that i am actually saying something to you. And somewhere in a muscle buried inside your skull, youve managed to take on something of what i’ve said.
What i tried to do in this speech, was show you how you are individual, your reasons for protecting the environment just as much as what you invisible torch looks like. Because we are individual, we all have difference ideas, and different takes on other peoples ideas. And it is these ideas, our individual and inclusive and creative ideas which will help our individual goals of conservation. Weather that be a blog, like with me, or how to get more people to come to a beach clean up or making anti-littering signs at your school. Be assured that you little actions and ideas are actually way bigger than you think. My little action of starting a blog, ignore that jellyfish costume, 2 years ago, has grown into the bigger action of having 70,000 page views. So take your ideas and build on them, make them yours and make them beautiful and individual. Put your creative spin on them and put your unique problem solving muscle to work. I put my muscle to work 3 years ago when I first came to MAD, and what started with a few neurons firing, quite simply changed my life. If you remember nothing else just remember this, take your ideas and run with them because you never know where they will lead you.

Well that was a really long post!
Here is a picture of three ostriches.
Nadine :D

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