I can understand why the organisers of the Howick Military Tattoo want Auckland Mayor Len Brown to stay away this weekend.
The mayor was roundly booed by the crowd at the Auckland Nines last weekend and, even given the lack of enthusiasm for speeches from any politician at a sporting event, it was a pretty hostile reception.
Brown is a distraction at best for any event organiser; an embarrassment at worst.
He needs to start performing in his titular role as leader of the Super City. One part of that job is to be available to all the media, not just the ones where he thinks he'll get a free ride.
Since October the producer for the Mike Hosking Breakfast show on NewsTalk ZB has put in 10 requests for an interview and Brown has turned down every one - as he did with Larry Williams' Drive show.
I can understand why he would want to steer clear of questioning about his sordid affair but when it comes to presenting his vision for Auckland's future he has a responsibility to answer questions. What will the projects cost ratepayers? What are the options?
But anywhere he fears there might be a challenge he steers clear. NewsTalk ZB is the No1 rating station and it is unprofessional of the mayor to hide from such a huge audience.
It's also extremely unprofessional to shag an underling in the Ngati Whatua room, so I suppose we shouldn't be surprised.