A couple of weeks ago, John Hawkesby and I acted as joint masters of ceremonies at a function celebrating 50 years of success for Villa Maria.

Sir George Fistonich said he wanted to keep things relaxed and informal, so both John and I stuck to the brief - perhaps rather too much so.

One guest described us, somewhat acerbically, as "the glee club" and several international guests were surprised that the Prime Minister, John Key, could be kidded around with and, in turn, give back a few good one-liners.

But that's the thing with Key: he's not at all stuffy and stuck on ceremony, and what you see is what you get.


I see he's got himself into all sorts of trouble for describing a radio host's red shirt as "gay" and, yes, I can understand how that could be seen as insensitive when so many young people go through a terrible time coming out.

But surely his unqualified support of the gay marriage bill, going against the views of many in his own party, is more important than one silly, throwaway line?