New Zealand Herald
November 15, 2000
Helmets Ideal Shield
for Health Ministers
Mega-movie maker Peter Jackson has come up with what some might describe as the perfect political headgear.
Not only does it offer protection, it keeps politicians quiet too.
"This thing's going to have the effect of shutting me up because it stops me breathing," puffed Health Minister Annette King beneath a 5kg helmet from Jackson's trilogy Lord of the Rings.
Mrs King and her associate minister, Tariana Turia, donned the helmets at lunchtime yesterday in central Wellington, but it had nothing to do with any barrage they were about to face during Parliament's question time.
They were promoting today's Health Sponsorship Council National Hat Day, encouraging people to cover up in the sun this summer.
The ministers' choice of hats was not flattering. "We look like a couple of wild bikies," said Mrs King.
They would have struggled to find a more exclusive piece of headwear. Jackson had agreed to allow the ministers to give the public a sneak preview of the costume pieces from his set, which is surrounded by heavy security measures.