In translation

13259611_1220743774632875_794746752_nFor one reason or another I’m not taking Te Reo Maori classes at the moment. I still use the odd word, and [usually] start with a mihimihi if I’m speaking formally but it’s really noticeable that my reo skills are declining. However, if Maori is spoken, and is not directed at me I can usually pick up the gist of what someone is talking about. In fact, if I get to soak in it I usually start using more words in my regular chat. With te reo Maori an endangered language I’m going to make more of an effort to use words, concepts etc in everyday life.



this is not a resolution

write more. anything. alla time.

draw. it’s not the illustration, it’s the drawing that matters.

dance. like a goddamned queen. #hailparris

lippy. wear it. be it.

korero. tihei mauri ora!





Review: Long ago, long ago

Ella (Susie Berry) has a new job working on a psychic hotline. Audrey (Isobel MacKinnon), her sister, is a postgraduate student investigating the links between fairytales from different countries. Their brother Ben (Jack Buchanan) is interested in making machines; in tangible objects rather than computers. Audrey comes to live with Ella while her flat is renovated but there is a tension between them. The way Ben contributes to that tension is shown throughout the play.

This play investigates memory, personal narratives, family relationships, jealousy, and different versions of family stories. The script by Cassandra Tse was the Winner of the 2015 Playmarket Playwrights b4 25 competition. Director Lori Leigh brings out the darkness and mystery in it. This is helped by live music provided by Stephen Clothier and Natalie Hunt who use their instruments in interesting ways. Lighting design by DW Storyteller highlights the multilayered set, by Lucas Neal, and helps the characters tell their story. All three actors give their characters multiple layers. Along with the multiple narratives this makes for a very interesting play.

Dark and measured.

*Originally published on the Wellingtonista 25 June 2015


My week has been filled with Children’s Book Awards, podcasts, dinners, drinking, celebrations, strategic planning, early starts, and late nights. Pleased it’s the weekend. So tired I could be drunk. (Also a little bit drunk.)

Written on this city

Following on from yesterday’s post here’s a Tumblr, Written on this city.

"I’ve lived in Wellington for seven years now and while I love this city there are places which are indelibly linked with instances of harassment, unwanted contact and assault for me. My experiences are not unusual, and in fact I am likely to be a lesser target because I am not a WOC, a trans* or nonbinary person, disabled, fat or homeless. This is not a list of all the harassment I’ve experienced. Just an indicator of the ways in which a palimpsest of constant awareness overlays my experiences of the place I live."


Last week a friend of mine posted a multi-tweet story in which they detailed being verbally and physically abused during the day on one of the Auckland CBD’s busiest streets. Noone came to their aid. A little while ago they’d posted a multi-tweet story about punching some guy in the face because he’d pinched their ass (they weren’t the first to suffer this.) This was during the day at rush hour on one of Auckland CBD’s busiest streets. Again, noone came to their aid. Before that they’d posted a multi-tweet story about being harassed by an older woman on the train because they were wearing branded clothing that the woman felt was inappropriate. These are only three of the many stories they tweet. This shit keeps happening to them and I’m pissed off that I can’t help.

My friend is LGBTIQQAA aka part of Gender and Sexual Diversity. (UK definition) I am too but I present in a socially acceptable way. My friend does not always. Are people not coming to their aid because they are ‘different’ or is it that we don’t know how to intervene? In Wellington the Sexual Abuse Prevention Network has been running ethical bystander courses “It’s our business” with some bars which aim to give workers “improved skills and confidence to intervene in potentially unsafe situations” as well as knowledge about consent,and the law. They also do “Who are you?” for young people and “Sexual violence awareness” for adults. I am also googling ‘ethical bystander’ which bring me up a number of options for finding out how to help in public situations.

I want to make the city I live in a better and safer place.

Two shows in Wellington

Second Afterlife by Ralph McCubbin Howell

Dan is quitting Facebook. He’s sick of his profile – he’s going to delete it all. It’s not as easy as that though, is it? After waking up in the second afterlife, a mysterious Guide tells him the only way to get back to the world is to meet all his previous online profiles – and defeat them in battle.

The return season of a Young and Hungry show from 2014 includes some new gags, new fight scenes and a couple of new actors. Happily sound designer and operator Philip Jones is still on stage providing sound effects. His well-timed shenanigans are one of the highlights for me. Another set are the fight scenes and physical comedy. They are liberally scattered throughout the production and manage to be both well choreographed (Ricky Dey) and hilarious. The final highlight is seeing young actors comfortably transition to a new theatre space with the guidance of directors Kerryn Palmer and Ryan Knighton.

Michael Hebenton does a good job as the hapless Dan, being dragged from one confrontation to another. Bronwyn Ensor, Michael Trigg, Matthew Staijen, and Mahalia Sinclair-Parker are very good as Dan’s friends, and alter-egos. Lighting by Tony Black shows the different times and places well. It’s especially spooky in the first scene in the second afterlife.

Energetic and fun.

Second afterlife at Circa Theatre to 13 June 2015.

Not in our Neighbourhood by Jamie McCaskill

Maisey Mata makes a documentary about what happens in a safe house for a women’s refuge in Thames. She meets the women in the house, and the women who support them in putting their lives back together.

McCaskill wrote the script while working with Te Whariki Manawahine o Hauraki, a refuge in Thames. His job was to ‘advocate against violence towards women’. He’s chosen to do this by showing the aftermath of the violence, rather than the violence itself. It’s still there as a shadow over the characters lives, but mostly it is their daily, even mundane, existence that is shown. This makes the play more affecting as it allows the ongoing consequences of violence to be felt.

Kali Kopae is an incredible solo performer. Each character is a distinct physical and vocal personality. It’s easy to figure out who is who – from volatile, explosive Sasha, to cheerful, practical Moira. Single sided interactions proceed at the pace of the character she’s portraying at the time, while transitions between characters happen organically. A cameo appearance near the end of the show highlights the insidious nature of domestic violence and the difficult decisions those who’ve faced family violence face.

Well balanced between hilarious and poignant. Recommended.

Not in our neighbourhood at BATS Theatre to 13 June 2015