We all know it. Men, well, most of us anyway, just don't talk about stuff that matters.
We'll talk about rugby, league, cricket, cars and carburettors, chainsaws and jetskis, half-wits at work and dumb stuff the kids get up to.
But we (men) struggle to get into the stuff that really matters, the pressure at work, the fear of being a failure, why we're feeling angry or tight, why we've lost interest in doing cool stuff.
At Radio Hauraki we've got a bunch of people — mostly guys who talk about dumb stuff all day. Like why beers and pies are good for you, how a woman was saved from a cougar by a Metallica song, how listeners can learn to speak Australian — they are seriously (mostly) idiotic and perfect for the target audience.
(Today's NZ Herald front page is also virtually blank, as the newspaper stands side by side with its Hauraki colleagues).
We also know that suicide is a big problem in New Zealand, and that men are particularly at risk. The statistics are there for everyone to see. In the year to June 30, 2018, 668 Kiwis took their lives and 475 of these were men. That means that each day in the 12-month period, at least one Kiwi male took his own life.
It's fair to say the media industry is not immune to the scourge. Most of us know someone in the business who has taken their life.
Why they commit suicide is always an incredibly difficult question to answer. An answer different for each life lost. What we do know is being too afraid to talk about our anxieties, our worries, our fears, bottling it up thinking no one wants to listen, or that it's not manly to talk about such things isn't doing us any good.
So today on Radio Hauraki, we're just playing music. No inane (but infinitely entertaining) chats and pranks between Jeremy Wells and Matt Heath over breakfast or Leigh Hart and the drive team in the afternoon. No ads. No news. No traffic. No weather.
The theory is that we go quiet to create space for our listeners to fill that gap with a conversation. We want our listeners to have a chat — to a mate, a sibling, a colleague. Anyone really.
I wish we could take credit for the idea but we've actually stolen it from our mates at Triple M in Australia.
They did it in July with one of the bosses there saying it could turn out to be one of the most important things they ever do. We thought it would work here too and when we got in touch with the guys at Movember they agreed and came on board straight away.
Our message is simple. Today, Friday, August 9 on Radio Hauraki, we're not talking, so you can.
Radio Hauraki frequencies
• Auckland — 99FM
• Christchurch — 106.5FM
• Dunedin — 106.2FM
• Gisborne — 105.3FM
• Hawke's Bay — 1584AM & iHeartRADIO
• Palmerston North — 87.6FM & iHeartRADIO
• Nelson — 90.4FM
• Northland — 93.2FM
• Southland — 93.2FM
• Taranaki — 90.8FM
• Taupo — 92.8FM
• Tauranga — 91FM
• Waikato — 96.2FM
• Wellington — 93.3FM
• West Coast — 89.3FM & 105.1FM
• Mike Lane is the content director of Radio Hauraki.
WHERE TO GET HELP:
If you are worried about your or someone else's mental health, the best place to get help is your GP or local mental health provider. However, if you or someone else is in danger or endangering others, call 111.
If you need to talk to someone, the following free helplines operate 24/7:
DEPRESSION HELPLINE: 0800 111 757
LIFELINE: 0800 543 354
NEED TO TALK? Call or text 1737
SAMARITANS: 0800 726 666
YOUTHLINE: 0800 376 633 or text 234
There are lots of places to get support. For others, click here.