The Last Word

By Sam Kilsby | Posted: Tuesday July 5, 2016

The Importance of Being a Mate.

We are all mates here, right? I’d like to think we are. As Otago Boys' boys we are part of a brotherhood. Pride, passion and tradition bind us. But can we be better to each other? Can we be better mates, to our fellow OBs lads?

In my opinion there are two things that you can be to your peers. A mate, or not a mate. Being a mate is quite a simple thing. A mate is someone who is not openly hostile towards a person. Being a mate doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be someone’s best friend, it just means that your friendly towards them. Share a joke with them, congratulate them when they’ve done something good. Help them out when they ask for it. Being a mate requires almost no effort at all, you’ve just got to recognise the person for who they are and respect that.

However, it is also incredibly easy to not be someone’s mate. As boys we do have an in built need to be better than everyone else. We need to be the biggest, we need to be the best, it is the way we feel good about ourselves. And sometimes the easy way to feel big, to feel like you’re the best, to feel good is to pick on others weaknesses. It is easy to pick on the small guy, make fun of somebody because of their intelligence or the colour of their skin, it is easy and fun to degrade the other guy. But boys, taking this option is far from the best.

It is much, much better to be a mate. Here’s a couple of reasons why:

First one: It is good for your health. It feels good to be part of a team, share a great story with the boys, and even have an emotional conversation! Having mates really does make you feel good about yourself, both mentally and physically.

Second One: There are perks. Having as many mates as possible means you’ve got access to a whole range of resources. The more friendly you are to a person the more likely they are to give you that 20 cent top up at the canteen, the more likely they are to let you crash on their couch after a big night, the more likely they are to introduce you to their girlfriends mighty fine friend. Being a mate has it’s perks.

Last One: Being a mate means that another person feels included. It is a bloody hard thing lads, being the person on the outside. The guy who is picked last for sports teams, the lad who everyone talks about behind his back, the boy who is bullied. It is an incredibly easy thing to be that guys mate. You don’t have to be their best friend, but a couple of questions, a friendly smile, even just your casual ‘yeah gidday.’ You’ll make their day, or at least not make an enemy. It’s not that hard to do, and the benefits are just too good to turn down. So be a good mate, and a brother to your fellow OBs boys.

Cheers Boys