17 April 2012

Punching on - Why I love Hamish Blake

Yesterday I was featured on the News Limited social and political commentary website The Punch. I took up the request to write an article about my love for Gold Logie winner, radio and TV presenter Hamish Blake (I was obviously in the social commentary category). I wrote a light, fluffy piece about celebrity crushes and the reason I like Hamish. Because he's cute, but above that, because he's a nice guy.

It was nice writing this piece - not too personal, fun and I got to watch some videos of Hamish on YouTube. Note that I did not write the headline, and I acknowledge this isn't a piece about world peace. In my article I discussed how Hamish takes the piss out of himself to make humour. And I also took the piss out of my own celebrity crushes.
So I now have a byline and profile on News Limited.That's exciting!

I admit that I was hesitant to write for them. But what did I have to lose? It's not as though I put my heart or my face on the line. And thank goodness I didn't. The comments from readers were brutal. There seems to be the attitude that writers put themselves out there and so should expect feedback of all types. Yes, feedback is welcome, but sheer bullying should not be expected or tolerated.

I've been trying not to read the comments, but like the man I love/d's Facebook, I cannot look away. It's fine, the commenters don't know me or what I do. And they've got no context about me. They don't put their names to their words. But I'm ok. One of the positive things is that their negative comments are only restricted to that article on The Punch, and haven't strayed over to my personal blog or email. I do feel very cushioned by the blogosphere and that is lovely. I know you've got my back, where ever my words are. Thank you.

And I am so grateful for the opportunity. The editor was very encouraging and praised the work on my blog.

Here's the article, and you can view the original and comments (if you can bear them) here.

But enough negative comment gazing. I'm on the fucking Punch! And it made front page of news.com.au today!

I have had many celebrity crushes in my 30 years. If these celebrities were remotely attainable, I reckon I’d be in with a chance. None of my friends understand my celebrity crushes. (I understand the passion of those One Directioners.)
I have loved Darren Hayes for half of my life. I only realised I couldn’t marry him in 2006. Callan Mulvey has made my heart stop since he played that bad boy in Summer Bay. Once I ignored two calls and three texts from a boy who was actually interested in me because I was watching Callan in Rush. I bought the Ben Cousins biography because he is hot. But there were too many words about football and drugs, and not enough pictures. And I also used to love Shane Warne. I never said I was cool.

These days I’m really crushing on last night’s surprise Gold Logie winner Hamish Blake. He’s the obvious crush for a woman of my age. He’s the guy my girlfriends don’t cringe at. They are happy to discuss the intricacies of his attractiveness with me. And there are so many.

Firstly, he is honest. He doesn’t look Hollywood (or Chapel Street). He hasn’t had his teeth whitened or straightened. He gets around in hoodies and jeans. His hair is ruffled. His smile is cute. This makes him sort of attainable, if he wasn’t engaged to Zoe. But it’s not all about looks. Really.

Hamish is the fun guy that everyone wants to be friends with. He works hard, but is not a corporate wanker. He’s clever. He demonstrates success after hard work and persistence. Hamish started off on Channel 31, then Channel 7, then a Saturday morning shift on Fox to drivetime radio and lots of TV work. I think the idea of a funny guy doing radio for two hours a day may suggest laziness but there is so much work that goes on behind the scenes that lazy is not the case. And he gives hope that someone like me, a dabbler in community TV, can make it big by being myself.

He makes his humour through not being afraid to take the piss out of himself. He makes people laugh. And that quality is far hotter than being a beefcake. The childish, yet clever games he invented with Andy – street golf, ghosting, tying themselves together for a week – they’re the things adults wish they could get away with doing.

Those episodes where he appeared on Spicks and Specks, not really knowing many answers but having a laugh anyway are a testament to that. I think he prided himself on humour coming before musical knowledge on Spicks and Specks. He answered questions before knowing the answer, and gave completely irrelevant answers at times. His lack of music knowledge didn’t matter.

Hamish is also loyal to his mates. That bromance with Andy is lovely. Through his own high profile programs, he’s give his mates a chance to break through. Jess Harris. Ryan Shelton. Michael Wipfli. He lets others shine alongside his success. And he adores his Mum.

But most importantly, I have never seen or heard either Hamish or Andy put others down. They don’t resort to derogatory jokes to get cheap laughs. They’re not racist, sexist, ableist or homophobic. The humour purely stems from poking fun at themselves. Unlike some other high profile radio announcers…

Carly Findlay is an appearance activist, writer and community TV presenter. She loves the passion generated from being a fan. She blogs at http://carlyfindlay.blogspot.com and tweets from @carlyfindlay.

(Originally on The Punch 16 April 2012)


  1. Carly, I just read your article and the comments etc. Phew! Struggling with the negativity and judgement from all the comments over an opinion piece! Love how you write and your replies are always so classy. (Loved Hamish on the radio and Spicks and Specks too). Hope you're well, have a great week!

  2. Congrats on your News Ltd byline and profile Carly! (Well, for what it's worth! LOL). No seriously, you're "getting places" and that's cool. I think Hamish is pretty sweet too, so I totally agree with your sentiments. Bah, ignore the stupid comments, The Punch is notorious for that, doesn't make them right! What matters is, you're the one with the byline, and not them :-) Keep it up!

  3. Great article and who cares about the negative comments- you did a piece for The Punch!! Whoohoo!! XXX

  4. I thought it was a great article, Carly and am thrilled for you to be published by News Limited. I glanced briefly at the comments, but the sheer stupidity and boorishness of most of them made me click away. Your writing is awesome! Don't ever forget that...

  5. Carly I thought it was a great article, so decided to head over and read the comments. I don't think the headline helped you but OMG those people need to get a life! I thought it was great and funny and enjoyable to read. And yay for your News Ltd byline.

  6. Carly, I loved the article and totally agree with you on Hamish's charm and wit. I loved his Logie speech.
    To be honest, I'm a bit (actually ALOT) over people being negative this week, so am going to skip the comments.

  7. Thank you so much everyone :) I am so glad that I have the courage to put my name to what I write, always. :) Pretty proud of this one.

  8. Congratulations Carly! I think you did wonderfully with your piece, and I certainly found it interesting & amusing. I try not to read the comments on any of the pieces written on websites like The Punch, because their comments sections always seem to dredge up the worst of society. Some of the comments on the opinion pieces on the Brisbane Times website, OH MY GOSH. It makes me so sad that these people have nothing better to do than tear other people down.

  9. I just read some of the comments on The Punch article. OMG they were horrible, you poor thing. I loved your piece and I still don't understand how people could be so horrible about something so fun and easygoing. I know it's hard but don't listen to the haters, you should be super proud of yourself!

  10. Hi Carly, just read your article and the comments on the punch. They were fairly typical, with a lot of negative ones, as usual. I've commented there a few times and it can be brutal. I always remind myself they're strangers on the Internet and mostly wouldn't be game to be that rude in person. Lucky I've never shied away from a fight, because you certainly get one there.
    I enjoyed your article. It makes a nice change to read a fun article. There's enough doom and gloom in the world.


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