My first job was ...
For my first paid employment, I had two jobs at the same time; one was at Shell (before it was Z) working on the forecourt, and the other was relief-milking cows.
It taught me … what "two-stroke fuel mix" means ... after a feeeeew mistakes. If you had a lawnmower or chainsaw in Morrinsville in the last half of 1999 and it mysteriously stopped working, my bad. I now know that. But you should see me pour a 40:1 mix - like a fine cocktail. And milking cows taught me that there are some smells that get into your hands that won't leave for days, regardless of the amount of scrubbing.
The last job I quit was … my job at Shell, after I worked out that getting paid $40 (before tax) for an 8-hour shift starting at 6am, wasn't the greatest hourly rate - and they wouldn't let us take the pies for free until they had been in the warmer for two days. I could just milk the cows twice a day and earn more than that and Mum always had pies I could eat for free, straight out of the oven.
The most famous person I've ever met is … I met three of the four Wiggles in Dunedin recently. They were my most recent high-end celeb meeting. Celebrity-wise, they're up there for our family. Many hours have been spent with The Wiggles over the last seven years, so it was quite surreal seeing them in person and not on the TV.
They were … an absolute pure delight. Emma was so lovely and friendly. Lachy was also super-accommodating as I accosted them early morning in a hotel car park. Simon, I'd met the night before. Also a true gentleman.
The best time I've had on air was … There've been so many times on the radio that I've been laughing so hard I'm struggling to breathe and I think, "This is nuts, imagine explaining what I do for a job to my great-grandparents." They all worked hard every day on the land and I go to work with the aim of having the biggest laughs possible with my friends, how would they even begin to comprehend that?
But the worst was … some years ago I got asked to speak at a youth career day. Worst. Day. Ever. I prepared this weird speech ... it's well out of my comfort zone to even talk at these sorts of things and that day cemented why. Fletch came for support (read: to laugh at me) and he can confirm what a truly horrid experience it was. It was like that episode of The Office where David Brent does an inspirational speech, except no dancing, no music, no nothing.
My dream role would be … managing an orchard in the Bay of Plenty or Northland, beside the sea. Because you'd get a little tractor and get to cruise around on that and be surrounded by trees and get to spend your time in the outdoors and eat fruit straight from the trees. Otherwise, a superhero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Is that too much to ask?
- Vaughan Smith hosts Have You Been Paying Attention every Wednesday at 7.30pm on TVNZ 2 and at 8.30pm on TVNZ OnDemand. He also co-hosts ZM's Fletch, Vaughan and Megan show weekdays, 6am-9am.