"Hey Will, would you like a chunk of Blue Marlin the size of your head that was caught yesterday in the Bay, for free for this work you've done?"
There is only one correct answer to that question. Yes. Yes I very much do, thank you (look at me using my manners. My parents would be so proud).
What I love is that seafood/meat/basically anything is used as currency in this country on such a regular basis that I was not surprised at all when I got this offer. I was just 100 per cent stoked!
It's truly a tax-free currency. There's no tax on the product. It's not taxing to eat it. Ok there is tax/tiring times while it's being caught, but that's also fun I imagine.
Things I've been 'paid' in as an MC, radio announcer and celebrant — hands up if any of these sound familiar to things you've been paid with.
Seafood — marlin, kingfish, snapper, blue cod, scallops, paua, crayfish (to name just a few)… And three goldfish. Yup. Goldfish. I didn't eat them, they made great pets. Sort of.
As much as a goldfish can be a 'great pet'.
Meat — wild venison, wild pork, tahr, assorted meat packs, a live chicken, a choice of any bobby calf I desired. Possum fur socks (still my favourite socks btw). I love rural NZ.
Booze — All varieties of it that you can think of. The most memorable was the gallon of 25-year-old homemade Romanian vodka. Then it became somehow involved with some severe memory loss…
Vouchers — Supermarket, booze shops, accommodation, restaurants/bars. Still sitting at home, firmly unused, are the stripper dollars and vouchers to an adult store. One day though. One day.
There's a guy in Tauranga called The Barter Barber. He gets paid in whatever you offer him.
He also does great work speaking up about men's health — legend.
Now there's a guy who's really indulging in what the Bay and NZ is all about generosity than the cash. We are still $10 Tauranga after all, right?
Will Johnston hosts The Hits 95FM Day Show. Live and local from 9am-3pm, every weekday in the Bay of Plenty.