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Scarves on Statues – Captain Cook

They have always been a slightly deluded bunch, the English.

When I was a child at primary school, we were taught that New Zealand was discovered by Captain Cook. It was a bare faced Anglo centric lie. Cook was the first European to step ashore here, but it was Dutch explorer Abel Tasman who over 120 years earlier was the first European to ‘discover’ New Zealand, and of course, it was Maori sea voyagers who were the first human beings to discover New Zealand 400 years or more before Tasman.

As well as discovering New Zealand and numerous other places, the English also think they invented the game of football. But most ancient historians will tell you that there were similar games as far back as Roman times.

Fast forward to 2012, and no doubt now that they seem to have discovered catenaccio, having put it to great effect in the Champions League Final this year, the English will start trying to claim they invented that too. Unfortunately like everything else they claim to have invented, they can’t quite seem to perfect it, as evidenced by Italy managing to scrape past them this morning to claim a place in the Euro 2012 semi-finals.

In keeping with this theme, it seemed fitting that the next instalment in the Scarves on Statues series should be this statue of Captain Cook outside Lion Breweries in Auckland. Except, it’s actually not Captain Cook. It’s labelled as Captain Cook and when it was imported by the company formally known as Captain Cook Breweries, they thought it was Captain Cook. But it is, in fact, a random Admiral in the Italian Navy. Ha!

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Enzo Giordani

A grassroots sports photography enthusiast based in Auckland, New Zealand, and a fan of the most magnificent football club on earth - A.S. Roma.

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