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Live shot of Phil Goff in the shower earlier today.
Live shot of Phil Goff in the shower earlier today.

AucklandMarch 13, 2017

How to shower shorter: Mayor Goff’s five-point guide

Live shot of Phil Goff in the shower earlier today.
Live shot of Phil Goff in the shower earlier today.

With a water shortage threatened for Auckland, we invited Phil Goff to give us some tips on how to take a short shower. He declined! And then we discovered this…

When I was young and devil-may-care I used to ride a motorcycle with the wind in my hair, because that’s how we rocked back then, there were no helmets required, can you imagine that? Yesirree we were rebels and I had really beautiful long hair. I also had a thick moustache that I used to suck happily as I rode, but enough of that.

Today it’s all different. The helmets are here to stay so there’s no point in having beautiful long hair anymore, and we have a water shortage because it rained too much. I know, it doesn’t seem fair.

Anyway, the point of my story about the motorcycle is that in those days we had a really cool slogan which was “Save water, shower with a friend.” As mayor it is my duty to ask you not to do that.

It doesn’t save water, people. Showering with a friend makes the showers much, much longer. And sometimes you even forget to get clean.

Live shot of Phil Goff in the shower earlier today.

As mayor I want you all to have shorter showers. Here’s how to do it.

1. Cut off your hair

As I said already, now that you have to wear a helmet on the bike there’s no real reason to have long hair anymore. I cut mine. You could cut yours too. Just imagine how much less water you would use in the shower if you didn’t have to wash your hair.

2. Before you get into the shower, organise your soap

You know how it is, you leave your glasses on the vanity, you step into the shower and some idiot has moved the soap so you have to grope around blindly, it’s not on the little shelf, you can’t feel it anywhere on the floor, then you find it and try to pick it up with your toes but you keep dropping it and in the end you’re down on your hands and knees and still you can’t find the damn thing. Don’t you hate it when that happens? So, organise the soap first. If you forget, here’s a really clever tip: turn off the water while you’re looking for it.

3. Do not run the water first to get the temperature right

It never works anyway, you make it a little bit hotter and now it’s too hot, you turn it down and now it’s too cold, it can go on forever. So what you do is: take off your clothes, organise your soap, get a little plastic cup and put it by the soap. No, get the cup before you take off your clothes because you don’t want to have to go back to the kitchen to find it when you’re naked. The gardener will almost certainly be standing right there at the kitchen window looking in. Like he does. Step into the shower and turn the water on so it’s just a bit warmer than cold. Wet yourself. Don’t worry about it not being hot enough because as soon as you’re wet you’re going to turn the water off anyway. Do your soaping. Then pick up your little cup, turn on the water and fill the cup. Turn off the water. Use the cupful of water to rinse your front. Repeat for your back. Repeat for under each arm. Repeat for your face. Maybe repeat for your bottom. That’s enough. Step out of the shower.

4. Stop worrying about that itchy bit between your shoulder blades

Now, I know that some people on some days will not follow all these instructions to the letter. So if you decide not to use the cup, or even to keep the water on while you’re soaping, here’s another tip: don’t worry about your back. Wet it if you must, but don’t waste time trying to get soap on it or scrub it and then trying to get the soap off. You will only waste more water. Besides, think of the added bonus: you won’t pull a muscle trying to reach that spot just between your shoulder blades but down a bit.

5. No singing

This is serious, people, and singing is such a waste of time. You can’t imagine me doing it, can you?

This post is an extract from the Mayor’s Motorcycle Diaries, which it is possible he will deny all knowledge of. The Spinoff Auckland has exclusive access to these diaries and will publish them as an occasional series. This is the first installment.

The Auckland section is sponsored by Heart of the City, the business association dedicated to the growth of downtown Auckland as a vibrant centre for entertainment, retail, hospitality and business.

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