We all love our national anthem. But the Māori bit sounds better than the English bit. So let's chop it in half and get on with the game.
Let's be honest. We Kiwis love our God Defend mainly because we love our country. New Zealand is the best and most beautiful place on planet Earth. The All Blacks are the greatest, Sir Ed was the first up that mountain and Fleetwood Mac is better with Neil Finn.
Then there's Rutherford, Lomu, Curtis, Te Kanawa, Flight of the Conchords, Buck, Neil, Baz, Fat Freddy's, Holmes, Matafeo, Sir Howard, Hils Baz, Radio Hauraki, the Southern Alps, the Bay of Islands, the Barretts, Kieran "Eyesockets" Read, Wells, Heath, Leith Croquet Club in Dunedin and The Whakamana Express to name a few.
The best people, the best food and the fruitiest of fruity wine.
No one in the world has a better national dish than our servo mince 'n' cheese pies. No one wears more black. No one talks more about the weather. No one drinks more Emerson's Pilsner. But great as we are, our national anthem has serious problems.
People say it's plodding and lacking in passion. That it goes on and on. That although we are the best team at the Rugby World Cup our national anthem doesn't even make the top 10.
La Marseillaise, Himno Nacional de Uruguay and the State Anthem of the Russian Federation all kick GDNZ to touch. People say the lyrics make no sense. Who is this God of Nations? Is it God? Is it Jesus? If so could the song not just go 'God and Jesus at thy feet?'.
That would make more sense. What is Pacific's triple star? The Southern Cross has at least four so it's not that. Is it the South Island, the North Island and Stewart Island? If so what about the Chats?
The point is none of this matters. The words aren't the important bit. As we all know God Defend New Zealand is a poem written in the 1870s by Irish immigrant Thomas Bracken of Dunedin.
A newspaper ran a competition to put music to it. John Joseph Woods of Lawrence bashed out the tune in under an hour.
There was a live performance Christmas Day 1876 at the Queens Theatre to poor reviews and we've been stuck with it ever since.
For all the heart and patriotic spirit we inject into God Defend New Zealand, the words don't actually mean that much.
The Māori version was written by T H Smith in 1878 and doesn't mean that much either. It's not quite a translation but it operates in the same ball park. It is, however in my opinion, a better fit.
The syllables flow with the tune better. It lifts the piece. Maybe that's because Smith was putting words to music not the other way round. He nailed it. (Although he may have got the tense of a couple of words wrong).
The national anthem does a good job in terms of unity. It's cool having both our audio languages represented. But for me this is not an English v te reo thing. It's about flow and time management.
The best thing about God Save The Queen is its length. It's very short. It does it's business and gets off the potty. We should take note. Ours goes on. It's an easy problem to solve.
Imagine this: Next game, together as New Zealanders we put our hands on our hearts, bring to mind how great our country and we are. Let the tears roll down our cheeks and smash out the soaring te reo version. One and done. I'm welling up just thinking about it.
An added bonus to the Aotearoa version over God Defend New Zealand is the word whakarongona — to listen, hear, obey. They don't know the meaning on the international stage So it sounds like we've slipped a cheeky swear in there.
Which is pretty bad form. Every school kid knows how fun it is to really emphasise whakarongona. Give 'em a taste of Kiwi.
We all love our country. We all love our national anthem. Unfortunately it's too long and not that good. So let's whack her in half for the win.
E ihowa atua, o ngā iwi mātou rā, ata whakarongona, me aroha noa, kia hua ko te pai, kia tau tō atawhai, manaakitia mai, Aotearoa
Go the All Blacks.