Turns out I forget to write about crucial stuff that’s been happening for coming up to six months plus now, cos I’m cool like that lol. To be fair I was either DOING these things or recovering from them, so my blogging was always busted. I’m also shambolic with the reflective updates these days let’s be real (catch me micro spitting that daily trash on twitter though HA). So here’s the highlight reel which now I’m assessing is CRAAAAAAZY, but it’s been an awesome and brutalful year. It’s been an Aotearoa heavy era for me and am looking forward to travelling again in 2016 but more about that later. This is gonna be a lot of painful ‘this one time’ content so hang tight and here’s what I forgot to tell yuz about:
1. Violet asked me to help her cover the Underground Resistance classic ‘Transition’ for International Womens Day alongside A.M.O.R., Nightwave, Nancy Whang & Mamacita
In a surprise twist this got mad love on Pitchfork, Fader, BBC and even from Underground Resistance themselves – so honoured to smuggle in some Māori alongside this international squad of babes. Not only that but um DONATELLA VERSACE fell in love with it and put it in the Versace 2016 showcase. No I’m not lying lol. This is her quoted in Vogue (again I’m not lying)
And heres an instagram video from the show, we donated our fee to equalitynow.org
So yeah that was crazy but something else that was FUCKING CRAZY was
2. THAT TIME I WAS A SATIRICAL JOURNALIST CALLED WAHINE JONES ON A MĀORI TV COMEDY POLITICAL SHOW CALLED ‘BROWN EYE’
‘Brown Eye’ featured heaps of comic talent I really look up to and let me experiment with a superiority-complex feminist reporter character called Wahine Jones. I’m completely serious, here are some of her looks lmao
Friday nights at 8:30pm on Māori TV shout out to Pango productions and all the talented people and writers I’ve worked with. I learnt heeeeaps and it hurtled me into the comedic spotlight a bit which I’m still getting my head around. We also got heaps of incredible guests on the show real talking and here I am pout-bullying a pic out of Georgina Beyer, icon and the world’s first transgender member of parliament. It’s also surreal to pretend for a few months you are the best journalist in the country and then you meet the actual best one in the country, shout out to John Campbell.
3. I was on the cover of the Sunday Star Times and it was really buzzy
I spoke to the journalist Michelle Duffy (who was heavily pregnant at the time QUEEN much) about my work and life and she totally put together something well-researched and special. It’s probably my most comprehensive interview to date and I think Michelle’s impending baby vibe got me on a wahine power tip cos I’ve been considered everyones ‘sassy faux woke friend for hire’ ever since this came out hahaha.
You can read it here
4. In a terrifying leap of faith, I asked the world to employ me for awhile
I put out a panui/call-out to the world saying I was free for three months and did anyone have anything they would like to employ me for. This ended up being the most nuts era ever lol. I got to Melbourne and spoke at Westspace Gallery thanks to the people at Liquid Architecture to a jammed house about radical transparency and love and had an amazing time over there seeing my ocka fam. Shout out to Caroline ‘Crystal’ Anderson who was basically the brains behind the mish. Here’s vaguely what I talked about and here’s me 3 beers deep talking to a bunch of Australian strangers who were all really amazing.
I did a talk in the Wellington Opera House alongside all these superwomen, an MIT and Massey University lecture, recorded some music with Kucka in the Red Bull Studios and gave two turbo back to back readings at the amazing Litcrawl event last month! This event was really special, not just because I got to read with my sister squad of writers Sarah Wilson, Courtney Sina Meredith, Faith Wilson, Ines Maria Almeida and Emma Powell but because I even got a chocolate bar made in my honour! It’s been a wild time. I even started writing for the amazing Māori and Pacific weekly online news site e-tangata. You can read my piece on growing up Māori German Samoan HERE and my profile piece on the gifted writer and poet Karlo Mila HERE
4. I was a rangatahi (youth) mentor can you believe it
So amid all these cool and eclectic opportunites I signed on for a project called Manawa Ora. This program is run by an amazing community organisation called Nga Rangatahi Toa and acts as a transition program that connects artists with rangatahi (youth) who’ve been excluded from mainstream education.
So I became a mentor and we put on a showcase at the Herald Theatre for an almost sold-out week. It twisted my melon, actual alchemy and magic happened with these genius kids…. and I was so lucky to be a part of it. I mean look at this squad, maybe apart from that blonde mongrel on the side, adorable!
My little mentoree was a rapper called V’Nesha from Mangere and she was/is an amazing young woman and MC. She has started more plans to perform and even take her own workshops! To push my point further, when Prince Charles came to Aotearoa, V’Nesha and the NRT fam greeted him with an ‘Unfuck The World’ sweater and then got quoted IN THE GUARDIAN. Yes I cried LOL, first it’s rapping, then it’s respectfully trolling the crown, queens these days grow up so fast
5. Like an idiot, I am still a writer
So in screenwriting news, big bombshell is that a second cartoon series of ‘Aroha Bridge’ has been green lit by NZ on Air, which is massive! We are currently in the lab now cooking up the scripts, I’m so excited slash tired slash excited lol. Last week I was also in the lab with the Piki scriptwriting collective, workshopping new film scripts for 2016. Here’s a pic of me Taika Waititi and Madeleine Sami which cracks me up cos they look fly and I look like someone just woke me up. Where my shades at?
6. I was a judge!
Yes that’s right I was a judge at the Fafswag Ball! If you follow me and my work you should know what that is by now, but here is a video taken by @chrislorimer on Instagram, I’m the double bunned bitch bopping in the background. SUCH AN HONOUR and I am never judging talent this lethal and incredible ever again lol – waaaaay toooo haaaard!
6. I helped make NZ Comic history!
Three Words is the first all-woman comics anthology in NZ history ever released by a publisher. I know, fucked up but awesome eh! I am so proud of the editorial team Rae Joyce, Indira Neville and Sarah Laing for all their hard work wrangling everyone. I’m glad that they bought me into their coven and idea and let me be a part of not only the project but the game-changing conversation/rupture this has made to such a male strongheld scene. You can pre-order this now from Beatnik Publishing, get it – it’s going to be goooooood!
6. Other things coming up for summer
I’m really excited to have been interviewed by Sophie Wilson on Radio New Zealand about an AMAZING Polynesian Futurism special she is putting together. This is a subject very close to my heart and Wilson speaks to people from all over the generational/outlook spectrum who are flying the South Pacific sci fi transcendental vision flag so don’t miss it, it’s airing on the 12th and 19th December!
The small publisher Cats & Spaghetti Press is releasing a series of poster poems where a writer works with a graphic designer to make a visual poem you can hang on your wall. I was lucky enough to work with my friend and queen Catherine Hunt. Check out the kickstarter!
Badd Energy are playing ONE SHOW ONLY at Psych Fest this weekend after a two year hiatus! Come through.
I have an animated monster of a duet coming out with Disasteradio, produced by Jizmatron and directed by Simon Ward coming out soon but I’ll spam yuz about that later
Also I want to finally put an end to the awesome hassling and make a straight rap mixtape this summer, so if you have beats send them to email@example.com. I want it to be quite wahine heavy so if you make music and wanna get in touch with me please do! (NB: if you want to tell me to hurry up and finish my comic Foodcore which is a year overdue, you are welcome to do that too lol – sorry Matt if you are reading this, it’s coming!)
My birthday is December 23 (same as Soyawi, Eddie Vedder from Pearl Jam, Harry Shearer aka the voice of Smithers, my friend Sebastian’s dad) and remember you can paypal me money for my birthday OR these are things I want you to buy me:
Thigh high tan suede boots
A new phone with a deceptive airbrushing camera
A new keytar cos I can’t find mine
Ingredients for a Negroni
That cool complicated lingerie that looks like you are gonna go parachuting lol
If you have read this far and you never want to be subjected to this much Coco content again maybe try me where I am daily pontificating, mainly about how food tastes good and water is wet.
So yeah this year has been amazing. I’ve done heaps of shit but I’ve also spent lots of quality time with my family, incredible friends and met heaps of babes. I feel like I am getting better at being in the moment, switching hats, helping others and remembering to have fun. Sorry it took me so long to report but I swear I will never leave it this long ever again! Arohanui x C