This week we farewell reporter Sally Brooker from the Oamaru Mail. She is slipping into semi-retirement but will continue to produce advertising features for Allied Press rural publications. Before she departed, Sally left us with this — her proposal for an Academy of Sloth. She admits it will never fly . . . but could it slummock?

If you’re seeking a deadly sin to finish you off, here’s the one you’re least likely to think of: sloth.

This is a much-maligned quality. While so many people are hurtling about the planet, whipping up a frenzy of anxiety and impatience, the gentle sloths are quietly enjoying every moment and outliving everyone.

Well, until the ill›effects of a complete lack of exercise kick in.

But they won’t mind, because they couldn’t be biffed reading about the health benefits of keeping fit, and they don’t bother going to the doctor where they would be given a bracing pep-talk on the error of their ways.

Ignorance is always bliss for the sloth. And why would they want to risk losing their bliss by jeopardising their ignorance?

If you want to try the daily double, you can always add gluttony. They are a natural pairing — after ample gluttony, sloth is the only possible outcome.

If you want to go for the trifecta, why not throw in a touch of pride — pride in your ability to be such a very fine sloth, allied with such admirable powers of gluttony.

Not many can aspire to these heights — OK, depths. Lesser mortals take on an alarming skin colour, ranging from puce to eau-de-nil, and have to rush for the bathroom.

Not only do they fail to retain the contents of their gluttony (or stomach), but the very act of rushing negates their sloth. This is dreadfully disappointing.

No, the committed sloth welcomes a close, rewarding relationship with gluttony and pride — perhaps the perfect Running shoesNIKE