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EditorialLiving Well

Opinions— let’s have ‘em.

Why this edition is all about goats, G.O.A.Ts and G.U.P.Ts (?!)

Jun 17, 2022

Words: Tim Leeson

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“Men will literally sit around and name random sports players for two hours instead of going to therapy.” — Random Twitter post, May 2022.

Yeah, I think that’s pretty fair. But, maybe more than that, many of us can debate about which player or team is better than another for hours on end.

As someone who first hit the basketball court as Michael Jordan was leading the Chicago Bulls to their second NBA championship of the 1990s, there’s only ever been one player at the top of the greatest player of all time pyramid: Jordan. It’s indisputable.

But others, including my soon-to-be brother-in-law, frequently cite LeBron James’ impressive basketball career and misguidedly believe that he is indeed the greatest. These poor erroneous souls are often slightly younger than us MJ fans, and rate individual statistics over the eternal benchmark of basketball success – championship rings.

Yes, I can totally be a stubborn curmudgeon when it comes to this belief. And, such is the influence that Jordan had on a younger me that as soon as I saw our twenty-third edition beginning to rear its head, ready to jump all the way from the foul line, no less, I began scheming of ways to link ‘His Airness’ into this issue. [*Insert evil-ish basketball nerd laugh].

By receiving kindred replies from our fellow Gippslandians – community, the environment and coffee – we got a glimpse into their values and passions.

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So, here you have it, the Greatest Of All Time or G.O.A.T. themed issue of Gippslandia.

Simon Gregg, the director of the Gippsland Art Gallery in Sale, raised a… great point,

“Kinda hard to apply the ‘greatest’ moniker to any one artist though. It’s a bit like picking your favourite family member.”

I can certainly empathise with Simon, sometimes it is difficult for me to decide which family member is my favourite. But then, interestingly, he added that he doesn’t have any trouble in doing it with music – having charted his favourite songs since he was just 10 years old. Nice!

To me, there’s something quite cool in determining the ‘greatest’ of anything. You need to be a little critical, maybe examine what triggers an emotional reaction and why, or declare that you value certain traits and features. Ask yourself, what do you love?

In this issue, when we asked some of our favourite Gippslandians about their favourite attributes of the region, their answers were overwhelmingly positive, as you’d anticipate. But, I didn’t expect the similarities between so many of the responses.

For so many of them, their community is at the forefront of their mind when sharing their take of Gippsland’s greatest hits. This was then followed by highlights related to nature and the stunning environment around us. Finally, it was coffee that was repeatedly mentioned. It’d appear that Gippslandians really relish a quality caffeine hit. Although, maybe they dig the company they share their java with as much as the brew itself, which takes us right back to their top priority.

There’s a Serbian proverb that I’m going to horribly butcher right now. To paraphrase, it says that someone without enemies stands for nothing.

Your opinion of what is great won’t be the same as other people, and in that moment of disagreement, you’ll stand for something.

This is what made the responses to our jovial questionnaire so rad. By receiving kindred replies from our fellow Gippslandians – community, the environment and coffee – we got a glimpse into their values and passions.

And, they were all things that I could get behind too, which felt surprisingly great. But, we didn’t just roll with G.O.A.T.s, we really enjoyed learning about actual, furry,animal goats too.

They’re pretty cool creatures, if you manage them correctly.

Now, I’ve got to get back to something so I can postpone another appointment:

“Jaylen Brown, Robert Williams III, Jayson Tatum, Al Horford, Marcus Smart…”

Gippslandia - Issue No. 23

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About Gippslandia

Gippslandia is a community, non-profit publication. We curate an ever-optimistic take on regional, national and global issues, in a local context. Leaving you feeling like a Gippslandia local, no matter where you’re from. Read more

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