A blog about songwriting and about the songwriter Luigi Cappel

JAFA Jokes in The Aucklander

This morning the cover story of The Aucklander was about JAFA jokes. The question was Taking the proverbial out of Auckland is a national sport. But can Aucklanders laugh at themselves?

It was an excellent story by Debrin Foxcroft, well written and very entertaining. For the uneducated, JAFA stands for Just Another effing Aucklander. It starts with “Auckland is the safest city in the world. Al Qaeda would never attack us because there is no public transport system to blow up.

Jokes include: You know you are a JAFA when

  • You never bother looking at the train timetable – you know the drivers have never seen it either.
  • You are genuinely surprised to meet someone who was born in Auckland
  • You know you’re part of a neighbourhood watch group, but have never actually met any of your neighbours

There are books full of JAFA jokes, there are forums and if you search the web, you will find plenty of them. The funniest part is we don’t care, we do have a sense of humour.

The funny thing though is although people, especially on the Mainland (aka the South Island) love telling JAFA jokes, they hate it when the tables are turned on them.

This is where the Songwriter part came in. 18 months ago we took a tour of the South Island, most of it was wonderful, but when we got to Reefton, thing were pretty laid back and we didn’t enjoy our stay other than the feeling we had arrived somewhere in the twilight zone. Reefton was in fact the first place in New Zealand to get electricity and my first song was along the lines of, will the last person to leave please turn of the light.

Anyway, I lost interest in that song because if you hadn’t been there, you wouldn’t know what I was talking about. Actually it wasn’t bad, it was quite cool in a quaint sort of way and I didn’t see anyone with 6 fingers.

So last summer I was performing at an outdoor concert on one of a number of live stages. I decided to have a bit of fun and play my new song, called What I like about Reefton. I told a little story about the trip and said that it had inspired a song. I then performed the song which has no words, lasts about 8 seconds and is based on the doppler effect where you can hear a car slowly driving into town and then zooming out the other end.

When I had finished, some people laughed and applauded, some looked at me blankly and one elderly woman stood up, called out at me “That’s not very nice” and walked away in an huff.

So here are the lyrics:

What I Like About Auckland

1.

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