debate Issue 11 | MAY 2014
debate Issue 11 | MAY 2014
Cover ART by Ivy Niu http://ivyniuillustration.com/ EDITOR Matthew Cattin email@example.com DESIGN/ART Ramina Rai firstname.lastname@example.org contributors Abigail Johnson | Ariel Bruenska | Charlotte Lightbody | Clint Milne | Erica Donald | Ethan Sills | Jess Forsman | Kieran Bennett | Laurien Barks | Louise Stone | Luseane Tupouniua | Mary Wilkins | Sharktopus | Scott Moyes Illustration & Photography Amber Khoo | Ivy Niu | Matthew Cattin | Ramina Rai advertising contact Kate Lin email@example.com printer PMP Print Ltd. publisher AuSM all rights reserved
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Last weekend, I had what will no doubt be one of my last swims of the summer. Reason being, it was rather nipply and it made my manhood shrink to the size of… well an average manhood, let’s be honest. I’ve been swimming consistently since October. I guess you could call me stubborn. I realise that if we go on technicalities, summer ended in February, but for me summer lasts around six months, between the first swim and the last. Summer isn’t a season – it’s a state of mind. I can’t stand those that judge the water’s temperature by month. Oh, you’re crazy! It’s April, isn’t it freezing? No. No it’s actually been quite balmy. It therefore brings me great displeasure to discover that with each weekend that goes by, the water temperature seems to plummet and I finally have to admit defeat and acknowledge the fact that winter is nigh. So far as coolness goes, winter would definitely be the Ringo Starr of the seasons, completely and utterly out-perked by every other. And I know the rest of the country gets shitty at Aucklanders for complaining about our relatively warmer weather, but I reckon we do have it pretty rats. At least in Southland winter looks like the goddam Beaurepaires Christmas ad with Vince Martin, complete with singing bluebirds, snowflakes and happiness. Here in AKL, it’s day after day of bipolar weather. You can never quite dress appropriately for its indecisive tantrums and rather than waking up to winter wonderlands and blankets of snow, we only seem to score
Despite its numerous average to poor qualities however, I am one to always search for any cloud’s silver lining, even if it’s a raging cumulonimbus. To cheer y’all up after my icy rant, here are a few things I love about the season to hopefully prepare you mentally for the transition to shitsville (winter).
the 15 agonising seconds it takes for the water to warm up, all the while splashing you with ice bullets. When you’re forced to venture outdoors, it is to do battle with the wind and rain. Umbrella, or not to umbrella. That is the question. I suppose I haven’t made winter out to be all that appealing in this paragraph… I got too distracted by how much I hate it… Allow me to make amends; kittens, mittens, hot water bottles, slippers, wheat bags, winter sheets, cups of tea, beanies, cuddles. You’re welcome.
This one mightn’t be applicable to those of you who are flatting, but the absolute best thing about winter for moi is coming home to a cooked meal, courtesy of my lovely mother. Where earlier in the year I could swim after work, these days it is dark and cold by the time my bus drops me sadly at the corner. Upon arriving home however, my world-sick soul is always lightened by a warm, mum-cooked meal. If winter’s biggest bonus is its ability to make food taste better than any other time of year, well that’s not such a bad bonus to have at all. And it’s not just the home cooked deliciousness… Winter is the time when you can indulge in all sorts of treats and not even feel bad about it; steaming bowls of Korean soups, deep fried anything, pad Thai… It’s all good. And since your midriff will likely be covered for a few months to come, hello winter layer, goodbye thigh gap.
Without a doubt, however, my absolute favourite thing about winter is when the weather man turns it on and surprises the country with an absolutely stellar day. You wake up in the morning to a frosty sheen that sparkles over the greenery and crackles underfoot. The sky is deep blue and cloudless and everything is still and calm, no wind, no waves, nothing. It’s days like these that you simply can’t ignore; after weeks on end of spectacularly average days, these gems feel like the golden ticket. You hustle up some friends, venture up north to Tawharanui, Omaha or Mangawhai, and the beaches are all yours for the taking, deserted and perfect. If you plan it right and you manage to suss a bach out for a weekend, well, all the better. Get the fire place cranked up, make yourselves a pillow and blanket fort, binge watch some 80s horror classics… That’s the way.
Like junkies to a dealer, winter is the time when humans crave and devour all things warm. Showers get longer, sleep ins encroach further upon schedules and hugs become absolute necessities. It becomes a constant battle with the elements. There you are in the early hours of the morning - the alarm has ripped you from your happy place like a cheating partner – and you know there are at least 15 paces between you and the shower, and that’s not including
Winter isn’t a kind season, but, with a little creativity, a lot of blankets and some good company, you can definitely make it work for you. So as we head into the season and the ‘Winter is coming’ memes take over the internet and the news bulletins, keep your chin up! It makes summer feel all the better.
torrential rain, hail and sleet (that Aucklanders love to gather up, photograph and hashtag #snowstorm).
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Secrets of a long-term relationship, from a girl who was scared of them by Abigail Johnson I grew up a healthily skeptical child of divorce. Him, a product of marital bliss. I spent a good chunk of my childhood being raised single-handedly by my admirable mum. His parents just celebrated 26 years. We weren’t really coming from the same world when we met. I was straight out of high-school, 17, and a bit too cool for long-term relationships. See, it was never part of my plans. I set out to go to uni, travel the world, buy a house, lead the revolution. There wasn’t really room for a partner. Flings, sure, I loved those beginning parts. The awkwardness, the excitement. But long-term? You mean, like not-shaving long term? Nah-uh. It was because of these separate backgrounds that we had different expectations during the first few weeks. After “bonding” pretty instantly (sorry mum) I never really intended on calling him again (now I’m really sorry). Not that our bonding wasn’t great, it was the best, but, as I said, not part of the plan. So it was him who called me back, it was him who did the chasing, and it was him who first called himself my boyfriend. “Boyfriend?” I repeated incredulously, with cocked eyebrow. “Oh” he stammered, “Are we not…?” “No, no” I assured with timid smile. “I like it.” (OMG move over Nicholas Sparks, right? This is gold.) Fast-forward three and a half years and we
are introducing each other to our bosses as “meet my partner.” Now it hasn’t always been easy, and we fight like any good couple will, but we kind-of fit together now (not in a rude way, pervs). There is something to be said for the comfort of long-terms relationships.
Deep, you guys, deep. Seriously though, life is not about finding someone to share it with. Life is about being happy no matter if someone is there or not. Find your happiness, don’t worry about finding love. (I’m so deep I can’t even see you guys anymore.)
And I am not single-bashing in any way, shape , or form. I believe single-life can be the best time ever. But it’s nice to come home and say “Let’s watch BB” and have someone who knows you mean Breaking Bad and not Bob’s Burgers (referred to as “the OTHER BB”). That secret language, that closeness with another human. It’s pretty sweet. And so, without further adieu, my tips for making it work:
3) HAVE REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS Most of us grew up with that princess bullshit hanging over our heads. The menz were ruggedly handsome and could ride horses really well, the ladies were damsels in distress with exaggerated eyelashes. That is not life. The right person probably doesn’t look like a Disney character, or a rom-com staple. You probably won’t have a meet-cute, or run into each other’s arms after over-coming some challenge which was really just a misunderstanding. Get fucking real. Don’t turn away Mr Perfect while looking for Mr Perfect body.
1) NEVER CHECK EACH OTHER’S PHONES By this I really mean, if you feel the need to check their phone, get out of it. Relationships only work when you are a healthy individual yourself. Feeling like you need to snoop through their stuff indicates an insecurity issue. If you are insecure (which is nothing to be ashamed of) take some time out and DO YOU GURL/GUY/ PERSON. Get some counseling perhaps, or invest in a hobby that will improve your enjoyment of life. 2) HAVE YOUR OWN LIFE Make sure that your life does not revolve around the other person. In the immortal words of Jaden Smith “people think a relationship makes you whole, that it's two 50%'s coming together to make 100% when it should be two 100%'s making 200%”
4) HAVE HIGH EXPECTATIONS HOWEVER while looking out for the right person may involve lowering some expectations, keep others really high. If they insult you, get out. If they threaten, hit or hurt you emotionally, get out. Do not tolerate fools. Do not feel you need to put up with it because it’s preferable to single-dom. You are way too good for that. Single-dom rocks. Happy-healthy relationships rock. Unhappy ones suck, and you don’t deserve that. Happy relationshipping. Or not.
Hey! My name’s David Perry and I just graduated from Auckland University at the start of the month. I’ve been taking photos since I was about 16, but only really got serious about it half way through university, where I started a 365 project (taking a photo every single day, and posting it on Facebook/Google+). Doing a project like the 365 pushes you to try new angles, compositions and other photography subjects. I mostly enjoy taking all sorts of night photos. Ones with stars in them stand out the most to people, mostly because you have to hang out with the stars for a while for your eyes to adjust to the darkness, which makes patience pretty important. Night photos require a lot of patience, but allow you to have a lot more freedom with your photo takings. Since it requires a lot of time to take the photos, you can quite easily get in the photo yourself, or if you’re camera shy, taking in nature and just chilling is always an option. Because the photos take so long to produce, you have to commit to only bringing back one or two photos, but they’re usually much better! https://www.facebook.com/dperryphotography https://dperryphotography.wordpress.com/
HOROSCOPES. by Jess Forsman
Taurus (April 21-May 21 Recent break-up? The whole ‘it’s not you, it’s me’ shite. Newsflash; it was definitely you that left the toilet seat up far too often. It was you, not me. Gemini (May22-June21 Hibernate! Germaphobe Gemini, sickness is everywhere. We will wake you when it’s all over in a year or two.
O range Syrup Polenta Cake
Cancer (June 22-July23) Winter is looming and you are eating your body weight in food to insulate. Don’t eat crab, that’s not right. Cannibalism is frowned upon in most societies. Leo (July 24-Aug.23) Lovable Leo. Well generally you are. However this week you are a little grouchy, probably because you decided it was a good idea to cut your own hair and are too proud to say you really effed it up. Virgo (Aug.24-Sep.23) Critical writing is great on paper… when you are doing a 3000 word essay. Being critical on social media about your family is really not. Get off the judgemental high horse and calm your farm. Libra (Sep.24-Oct.23) Be kind to yourself this week. Don’t mix red wine with white. It never ends well. Scorpio (Oct.23-Nov) Yes you feel like you were totally jibbed and were born in the wrong era (hello Prince and all 80’s Glam bands), but who would people laugh at when you bust out a ballad and dance moves before jumping into the car? Sagittarius (Nov.23-Dec.21) You have trouble being consistent. But at least try consistently drinking out of your own glass, people don’t like lipstick stains on their glasses. Don’t believe it? Try that guy over there - the one who has a lady under his arm and see what happens. Capricorn (Dec.22-Jan.20 It is good to be self-aware, but to aware others of yourself is actually a pain. We get that your opinions are far better than us mere mortals but please keep your mouth shut this week. Don’t hang out with a Sagittarius either unless you want to be involved in a punch up. Aquarius (Jan.21- Feb.19) Let us be reasonable here; you are amazing at looking fresh eyed and bushy tailed any day of the week. What is unreasonable is using the word penetrate in a conversation about fish. Pisces (Feb.20-March 20) The Grease soundtrack is wonderful we understand. But pelvic thrusts down the hallways aren’t pretty. Aries (March21-April 20) Confrontation is fine when you’re with the right audience like your mirror. Being confrontational to your mother and her cooking will end with one very hungry sheep.
Hi everyone! I have never used polenta before and I was super intrigued to use it in a cake. So this week’s cake is a zesty orange polenta cake which is packed with vitamin C to help beat the oncoming winter chills. Let me know if you make it, and what you think… It’s an interesting, dense texture but quite nice at the same time ☺
What you will need: • • • • • • • •
1 cup polenta 2 tsp orange zest ½ cup unsweetened orange juice 1 cup sweetened condensed milk 3 eggs 60g butter, melted 1 ½ tsp baking powder ¼ cup plain flour
Syrup • • • •
½ cup unsweetened orange juice ½ cup sugar ¼ cup water Yoghurt to serve – optional
Preheat oven to 180c. Line the base of a 20cm cake tin
Combine polenta in small bowl with orange zest and orange juice
3. Beat sweetened condensed milk and eggs until combined. Add margarine and yoghurt, beat until combined. 4. Lightly whisk in polenta mixture, baking powder and flour. Pour batter into cake pan. 5. Bake in preheated oven for 40-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Cool in pan for 15 minutes and turn out on to a plate. 6. Place extra orange juice, sugar and water in small saucepan, bring to boil whilst stirring, simmer uncovered for 7 minutes or until reduced to a syrup like consistency. When cool, pour syrup over cake. 7.
Serve with yoghurt (optional).
The Renewed, The Cancelled and The Future by Ethan Sills A lot of the television that airs on our screens comes to us courtesy of the four big networks in America: ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC. Their shows dominate television here, with smaller networks like The CW, cable channel offerings from the likes of HBO, Showtime and FX and several British and Australian offerings bringing up the rear. Last week in America, the Upfronts were held, an annual event which sees the big channels announce what shows they have renewed, what’s been cancelled and what new programmes they will be offering. So here is a handy guide so you know which of your favourite shows will be coming back and which of them you need to start campaigning to bring back. Coming Back There are quite a lot of shows that will inevitably return due to how long they have been around: CSI, NCIS, Grey’s Anatomy, Supernatural, The Simpsons, Family Guy and The Big Bang Theory have all been renewed, the latter guaranteed to produce new episodes until at least 2017. Returning comedies include 2 Broke Girls, Mom, Hot in Cleveland, The Middle, Modern Family (though since TV3 lost the rights it has been missing from our screens – can someone pick this back up please???), Bob Burgers, South Park and American Dad (which has moved to a cable channel in the US so expect raunchier jokes than normal). Cable offerings Veep, Girls, Looking, Nurse Jackie and Episodes will be back too. The ever popular Miranda will return some day as well, though not any time soon it seems. On the drama side, crime shows NCIS: LA, Castle, Hawaii Five-0¸ The Mentalist, Criminal Minds, Persons of Interest and Elementary are all returning. The more melodramatic Scandal, Nashville, Pretty Little Liars and Revenge shall be back, while those with ‘genre’ interests can look forward to more of Agents of SHIELD, Arrow, Once Upon A Time, The Vampire Diaries and its spin-off The Originals. From the grittier cable world, The Walking Dead, House of Cards, Homeland, Orphan Black, Masters of Sex and Ray Donovan will all be back for more. On the British side of things, Doctor Who will be back for its eighth season later this year as will Downton Abbey for its fifth. For fans of Australian
shows, Offspring’s new season starts there in July. Other notable shows include Broadchurch, Wentworth, Puberty Blues, A Place to Call Home, House Husbands, Rake, Mr Selfridge and, of course, Sherlock, though no clear return date there. And, of course, Game of Thrones will be back for at least two more seasons as it has gotten the greenlight for seasons five and six – hopefully that means more dragons. The Cancelled With all the beloved shows that do return, there are usually nearly as many which are cast to the television graveyard, either by choice or as a result of poorer ratings. While it was hitting all the high notes a few years ago, Glee’s ratings have dropped lower than the voice of a postpubescent choir boy, and the next season of the once hit show will be its last. Once airing here three times a week, Two and a Half Men has lost one and a half of its original men and will conclude with a twelfth season next year. The wine-fuelled Cougar Town will also be finishing after its sixth season, while the last season of How I Met Your Mother nears its end here. As vampires are no longer popular, True Blood will finish with its next season which starts around June/ July, and is one of many American cable shows finishing up; The Newsroom¸ Justified, Mad Men, Sons of Anarchy and Boardwalk Empire are also wrapping up forever, some by choice and others by ratings. On the network side of things, there will be a lot less familiar laughs next year; Community has been cancelled after five seasons despite its passionate fan following, along with a slew of other familiar to our airwaves programmes Trophy Wife, Super Fun Night, Suburgatory, The Neighbors and The Michael J. Fox Show. Revolution was a big deal when it premiered but now it is being shoved to the side, and newer series The Tomorrow People and The Carrie Diaries are gone. The Future Whenever there are shows getting cancelled, there will always be new ones waiting to take their place, hoping to be the hot new comedy or the next big drama. Half of these shows probably won’t make it to our screens, and most
will probably not make it to a second season, but here are some of the most interesting ideas that could very well be your next favourite show. It seems superheroes aren’t just dominating the big screens, as FIVE new comic-inspired shows have been ordered. Most interesting one to me is Agent Carter; with Hayley Atwell reprising her role from the Marvel Cinematic Universe in this 1940’s set show about the creation of SHIELD. After first appearing in a small arc on Arrow, DC speedster The Flash will headline his own show, while in the origin story genre we have Gotham, a prequel to Batman told from the view of a young Jim Gordon (played by The OC’s Ben Mackenzie). Lesser known comic property Constantine is also getting a TV show, following a powerless man who investigates supernatural disturbances. New Zealand actress Rose McIver is leading her own show iZombie, based on a graphic novel about a zombie who gains memories from the brains she eats and uses them to solve crimes. Think that’s sounds silly? How about Jane the Virgin, about someone who accidentally becomes artificially inseminated – I have no idea how that is possibly but could be an interesting watch. Oscar winner Octavia Spencer headlines Red Band Society about kids who grow up in hospital, while former Iron Man actor Terrence Howard stars in Empire about the dying head of a record company. With comedies, Doctor Who’s Karen Gillan stars in Selfie, a modern version of My Fair Lady with a social media backdrop, but sadly not a lot of the new comedy offerings seem very appealing. This is only a snapshot of the current TV landscape: everyone is making original scripted programming in the US, from XBOX to E! (yes, that E!), but I tried to cover most of the major shows that air/aired here. It is hard to tell what shows will live to see another season come next May, so it is best you enjoy your favourite programmes while they last! Interestingly enough, not many of the cancelled programs from this year ever made it to our shores, so I guess the one benefit being so behind the US is that we don’t get as many shows that are doomed to leave us disappointed anyway (though we still shouldn’t have to have SoHo to get shows the same day as the states). So go out and rejoice that your favourites are back, and mourn the eventual end of the others, but ultimately celebrate the quality of the programming we are getting these days – it won’t last forever, so enjoy it while it lasts.
A Single Male’s Guide on Where to Find a Mate by Matthew Cattin I write this to you as an eligible bachelor who doesn’t get out much. I apologise if that statement caused you to spit a plume of scolding coffee from your mouth in astonished disbelief, but it is the gospel truth. Yes, dear readers, I am both single, and a bit of a homebody. If you need a breather to process what I am saying, by all means take one – I can’t quite believe it either. When I say I’m a homebody, I don’t mean I’m agoraphobic. I do have a social life, and I do consistently fill my weekends with fun times. However, these fun times generally involve quiet hangs with friends, seeing a film, having a jam or tripping up to a beach for the day. Social, yes, but not exactly the type of activities to guarantee matchmaking opportunities, unless of course it’s with my guy friends who are never all that keen on my advances. Again, apologies if what I’m saying comes as a shock to you. Going out has never really been my scene and the ‘it’s fun if you’re drunk’ argument loses its weight when you realise it can be applied to anything; picking fights with bees, your aunty’s 60th birthday or putting debate together every week. And besides, if you’re after a mate that breeds for life, you may be out of luck if you’re searching in clubs. Especially in Hamilton.
So where does one start looking for a mate? Honestly, if I knew, I would tell you… But I do have some theories. Here, desperate singles, is a hastily assembled guide from a single with no clue, a haphazard collection of theories, habitats and behaviours – I apologise in advance if any of the following causes you girl trouble. The Library. Whenever people whinge to me that there are no nice girls out there, my first question is always this; well, where are you looking? And not once has that whinger ever said, oh, the library. Why? Because nice people read books, that’s why. While clubs attract people who brush their teeth with bottles of Jack, libraries attract only those that like spooning for hours, giving you heartfelt compliments and making a good impression on your parents. The library environment can also make it easier to hook your newfound bookworm; here’s how. Ladies love bad boys – this is fact. Movies have proven this time and time again. And while you may think the library won’t allow you any chances to prove how rough n’ tough you are, how about trying this on for size; get yourself a handful of Goosebumps novels, swagger over to a cute browser, and say hi to her, in your outside voice. She’ll swoon in seconds when confronted with your complete disregard for library rules. You might get kicked out, but it’s a small price to pay for love. If you have no luck at the library, see how you get on at the video shop or record store. The Bus. Societal expectations may dictate that conversing on public transport is social suicide, but I say no! Naysayers of bus banter are missing out on countless opportunities to match-make. The beauty of the bus is that for 15 minutes, 30, an hour,
whatever, you’re essentially on a blind date with whoever’s sitting next to you. Use this opportunity to get to know that special somebody! If your new road trip buddy is wearing headphones or reading a book, don’t let it put you off! They’re just waiting for you to make a move! Tell them about your ex-girlfriends, do some movie impressions (they’ll lap it up!) or challenge them to a staring contest. The bus ride is your oyster, and from there, you’ll take the moon with a slice of pie, thanks. With meeting opportunities like this, who needs Tinder? The Pet Store. If there is one thing that single ladies love (apart from Beyoncé), it’s cats, so why not spend some time searching for success at the source? Your local pet store can be a great place to meet high quality mates. Drawn in by a desire to cuddle and love small balls of fluff, ladies will travel for miles just to hear a wee kitten mewl. By hanging around kittens, you will increase your chances of bumping into affection-starved singles by at least 300 per cent. For bonus points, I would recommend wearing a hand knitted woollen cat jumper, cat socks, and a few sprays of catnip on your neck. When the ladies arrive to admire the kittens (and they will – where there are kittens, there are singles), all you’ll have to do is relax, be yourself and make numerous kitty puns – you can’t go wrong. A warning, however; you would be wise to ask your potential mate how many cats she already owns as the higher the number, the bigger the emotional baggage. So there you have it! Matchmaking made easy. If you have any questions, comments or testimonials, I’d love to hear from you – hit me up at the pet shop some time.
- Kill, Bang, Marry The Spies I’d Let Shag Me By Louise Stone
A penance for my absence last week, I present a double feature this week: James Bond. The rules are simple. You are given three people and have to decide which one you would kill, bang, and marry. Explain your choices. Remember, these decisions are based on the characters portrayed – not the actors themselves. But Louise, they all play the same character, James Bond! If you are saying that Timothy Dalton’s portrayal of Bond is comparable to Daniel Craig, then just turn the damn page and move on to the rest of the magazine. You disgust me. Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries. And if you say that The Holy Grail is not the best Monty Python movie and it’s over-hyped – the popularity of a film does not determine its quality in either direction. And I’d actually put it on par with the Meaning of Life; though not quite as good as And Now for Something Completely Different and Life of Brian. Today’s choices are divided into two rounds:
Round One: The Golden Oldies. Featuring Sean Connery; George Lazenby, & Roger Moore Sean Connery is going to have to go I’m afraid. It’s the accent. It’s nothing personal, I just don’t want to be having sex with a guy who voiced the dragon in DragonHeart – I know Game of Thrones made the whole dragon thing sexy, but this really isn’t the same scenario. Not to mention that I want to burn his really bad hair piece. Imagine it, you’re going at it like a couple of dogs, then all of a sudden, a brown rat lands on your back and begins to tickle you mercilessly – oh wait, it’s Bond’s toupee. Mood killer much? Yes, the answer is yes in case you were wondering. Plus let’s face it – if the British government really hired a Scotsman to be a spy, he’d get a lot more flack and bullying in the work place. Us English are a cruel race. And although I’m all for a good romp in the hay with a man, Sean Connery was the sort of Bond to bring in five other women. Needless to say, Louise Stone doesn’t share very well. As for the bang, I picked George Lazenby. This is a name that many won’t recognise, and I don’t expect you to. Lazenby is known for starring in only one Bond film – On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969). Stop giggling at the 69 – stop that right now. And with this one film in mind, you have to understand that Lazenby didn’t really get the chance to develop his character. But for his one film, we did see a Bond who arguably had some genuinely witty one-liners; actually relied upon his intelligence rather than
just brawn and was a little more ‘woman-friendly’ than Sean Connery. Plus, let’s face it; the guy killed a man in a snow plough. I mean, that strikes me as situational-creativity – combine that with his athleticism (his epic ski scene) and his intelligence and I think we’re in for a good time. We’re going to the chapel and we’re gonna get married – and by we, I mean Roger Moore and I. I know what a lot of Bond fans are thinking – Moore was terrible, cheesy, and just not that great. Don’t talk that way about my future husband! Seriously, the guy has a licence to kill – he’s gonna fuck you up if he hears you talking smack about him. Why is Roger Moore’s James Bond an ideal husband? Believe it or not, cheesy one liners are okay with me – and if I’m going to be married to the man for the rest of my life, I’m going to need a good giggle now and again. Physically, he is arguably more handsome than Sean Connery’s Bond and more suave than the previous two Bonds. And out of the three Bonds so far, Moore’s Bond gets to face off against my favourite evil henchmen and sidekicks – and by my favourite I mean the cheesiest. We’re talking Nick Nack, Chang, May-Day, and – my all-time favourite Bond villain – Jaws. If my husband’s enemies are trying to kill me, I’d rather have these horrible henchmen trying to end my life than someone actually threatening.
Round Two: The New Dudes. Featuring Timothy Dalton, Pierce Brosnan, & Daniel Craig This is one of the easiest decisions I have ever made – kill Craig, kill him dammit. My decision has nothing to do with me disliking change and new things – if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it – and is actually based on my dislike for Craig’s portrayal as Bond. The latest James Bond is dark, moody, cold and a huge tosser (I know, we sound perfect for one-another). But that’s not what I personally want in a Bond. I think Bond is meant to be tongue and cheek, cheesy and a bit too unbelievable. I couldn’t marry Craig because he’d just be so bloody depressing – and I’m not putting up with him moping around the house, complaining that he is fit for duty despite what the government says. And can you imagining banging him? It would be quick, short, and over and done with before you could say ‘let’s turn off the lights’. Then he’d get up and leave to go sulk in the corner. Super sexy. Plus, the biggest drawback to Craig’s Bond, pretty much every woman he likes, touches, or looks at dies. My survival instincts say to stay away from Craig’s Bond – far, far away. Another unfamiliar Bond name for some, Timothy Dalton starred in only two Bond films; The Living Daylights (1987) and Licence to Kill (1989). While still a darker Bond than previous actors, Dalton was still not as dark and brooding as Craig is today, and this is why I would tap that. What stands out about Dalton’s portrayal is that it differed considerably from those of previous actors – this Bond was hard-hitting, gritty, and such a bad boy.
These are all the good qualities that a woman wants the bedroom – just not on a long term basis. Not to mention that Dalton’s Bond relies less upon gadgets than his predecessors, with Dalton employing a more ‘hands-on’ approach – it’s good to know that if the batteries die, my night won’t be ruined. This of course leaves Pierce Brosnan as my (un)lucky groom. I’m not going to lie here, I’m biased towards Brosnan’s Bond because I grew up with this Bond specifically – and it’s hard not to get nostalgic. Besides my personal preference, there are good reasons to marry Brosnan’s Bond. He returns us to the tongue and cheek we are familiar with – and familiarity and stability are arguably good things for marriage. At the same time, this Bond can do what has to be done – he is decisive and some would say cold-blooded in his killings, but the job has to be done. And sometimes a married man has to do things he doesn’t want to – this Bond doesn’t strike me as the kind to wimp out on cleaning the toilet. Not to mention that this Bond has an invisible car – say goodbye to parking fees and speeding tickets; and say hello to sexy-times in inappropriate places (not that we need the car for that). And – although not related to the actor’s portrayal – Golden Eye is one of the best Nintendo 64 games ever. That game alone is worthy of a marriage. 15
It must be getting close to exams around about now. I wouldn’t actually know, since I graduated last year and now I’m living the sweet life of full time work, full on weekends and a full pay cheque. Well, as full as a graduate journalist’s pay cheque can ever get. However I’m not such an old fogey that I don’t remember the days of exams. The pile of books sitting on your desk as you blatantly try to ignore them, the half-hearted scrawl of notes while watching Geordie Shore or Catfish (how good is the new season?) and most of all the deceitful brags of fellow students, who reel off facts about the Digital Divide like there is no tomorrow. In case you were wondering I was sorted for that essay. I wrote a personal exposé on how I had to live on dial up internet for two out of my three years of university because I lived in Dairy Flat. Aced it. I also remember the ball of stress which sits low in your tummy, much like a lump of Gran’s meatloaf, just sitting there making sure you’re aware of its presence. Then as the clock ticks by and your days turn into hours, turn into minutes, turn into seconds… It erupts. The weeks of flash cards and note taking (although let’s be realistic, it was probably only one caffeine-fuelled night) whirl before your eyes and promptly disappear. Was it the Digital Divide you were going to write the essay on? Or the Two-Step Flow model? (For those who don’t study Communications, you are missing out on a world of fun. In my first year we studied the movie Alien and learnt there are quite a few phallic references in that movie, as well as toothed vaginas. Anyway I digress.) So there you are staring numbly at the page in front of you, pen clenched in one hand while the other hand hits your forehead repeatedly (it doesn’t help. Stop it). The person next to you is scribbling away and is already on their
fifth page, barely a bead of sweat anywhere. The tutors are sitting at the front of the room, absently walking up and down now and then to slash through the times written on the board, marking ten more minutes of wasted time. You’re lost. The stress ball in your tummy has absorbed everything, all the knowledge you previously had (when you were definitely going to ace Media Comm) and even all memory of how to write. Seriously, does the lower case B look like this: b or this: d. Why do they look the same? Why does the English Language do this to me? So anyway you’re sitting there and you think “Oh wow, if only there was some way to adolish this dall of stress so I coulb concentrate and write about mebia communication, my favourite sudject in the worlb.” Well my poor confused friend, there is. I was going to write a whole column on how to manage stress, but I was having far too much fun slightly hyperbolising the stress of uni days that I forgot. I also couldn’t really think of much because I was never too stressed out by stress (don’t judge me by my choice of words, it’s getting late). So I’m probably the wrong person to write these tips. Maybe Matthew should be writing these, because he’s been pretty stressed. He hasn’t had many people contributing to debate this week (c’mon guys, what’s up with that? When you don’t contribute Matthew comes crawling back to ex-students like me and begs us for a few words to slap on the page). *Editor’s note: Erica may I remind you of a recent quote; “I miss writing for debate… BEFORE I DISTRACT MYSELF EVEN FURTHER! Here are a few tips to prevent stress in the lead up to exams. Apologies if it’s not even close to exam time yet, the lack of holidays when you work has really fizzled my brain, as has the number of media releases I read today.
1. Hug a puppy. Kittens are also a good alternative if you do not have access to a puppy. If you are allergic, then go hug your goldfish. 2. Study. Seems simple, but this shit works. If you actually know what you’re going to write about (and you learn it at least more than one night in advance). Sorry if you were hoping for another easy tip like puppy cuddles, coz life isn’t all puppy snugs and roses. It’s hard work and flash cards. 3. Tea. I highly recommend herbal tea. Or just any tea really. Or hot water. Or just water. Keep your brain hydrated. 4. Remove distractions while you’re studying. Switch off your mobile phone, take that Andrew Garfield poster off the wall, tell your boyfriend you have your period and study. 5. Write for debate. You can vent about stuff and pretty much write whatever you want. Plus it makes Matthew happy and he’s adorable when he smiles. 7. Follow me on Twitter for a really good time. EricaDonald_ and I don’t even care if this is a shameless plug. I’m a journalist now. I need contacts. 8. Drop out and join the circus, coz have you ever seen a stressed clown? 9. Almost made it to ten! 10. Ha ha, did you even notice I skipped number 6? 11. Awkward. Sorry that’s about all I have, because it is well past my bedtime and since I’m a full time worker now I need my beauty sleep. I hope this helps… I don’t really because I know it won’t help even the slightest, but thanks for reading my time wasting article. If you actually read this far you could be my soul mate. With love and puppy hugs, Erica Donalb.
UPDATES 2014 AuSM Pool Competition – Heat Three Heat Three of the AuSM pool competition is going off at Vesbar this Wednesday, 12-1pm! Great prizes up for grabs! For more info: https://www.facebook.com/ausm1/events Perfect gift for your loved ones AuSM sells 2014/2015 Entertainment Books for only $65! It has more than 100 wonderful offers at local restaurants, hotels and activities. Get it now before it’s too late. A sample copy is available for viewing at AuSM City campus office. AuSM Lodge Plan to hit the slopes this winter? AuSM Lodge at National Park will be the perfect place to go! There are still some sweet dates available during term break. Book now at www.ausm.org.nz before all the good dates are gone! De-Stress Week in two weeks’ time. AuSM wants to pamper you this week during this busy time of year to keep you going! Manukau Campus: AuSM Big Breakfast on 4th June from 9am and free snacks and fruits on 5th June from 9am. North Shore Campus: 3rd June with AuSM Big Breakfast from 9am and 4th June with free snacks and fruits from 9am. City Campus: Free snacks and fruits on 3rd June from 9am and AuSM Big Breakfast on 5th June from 9am. FREE haircut and massage for you at City campus on 5th June from 10am – 1pm. Check out www.ausm.org.nz or Facebook page www.facebook.com/ausm1 for more info!
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DAD JOKES How many tickles does it take to make an octopus laugh? Ten tickles. I went to a zoo, and the only animal there was a dog… …it was a shitzu.
What do you say to your sister when she’s crying? Are you having a crisis? What is it called when Batman leaves church early? Christian Bale. Why did the can crusher quit his job? Because it was soda pressing. What did the buffalo say when his son left for college? Bison.
Went to the opticians the other day, guess who I bumped into. Everyone. I accidentally pooed my pants in an elevator. I’m taking this shit to a whole new level. So I used to be addicted to soap… …but I’m clean now. Why was 6 afraid of 7? Because 7 was a registered 6 offender.
TRY TO SPOT THE 15 DIFFERENCES! DID YOU KNOW?: BEVERAGE EDITION In eastern Africa you can buy beer brewed from bananas. Hawaii is the only US state that grows coffee. Iceland consumes more Coca Cola than any other country.
70% of all Irish barley grown goes towards the production of Guinness beer.
Absinthe, which contains distillates of wormwood, was illegal in the United States until 2007.
Green tea has 50% more vitamin C than black tea.
The drinking straw was invented in 1886.
Coffee trees produce their first full crop after five years of age.
Coca-Cola was originally invented by John Pemberton in 1886 as a medicine.
The first aluminum drink can was introduced in 1964. after petrol, coffee is the largest item bought and sold.
Dark roasted coffee beans contain less caffeine than medium roasted ones (the longer a coffee is roasted the more caffeine burns off)
MAMA BARKS' KITCHEN by Laurien Barks
I have grown up in the kitchen. Obviously my mother had two reasons for this: A) I am a woman and she wanted me to learn my place early on. B) No man wants a wife who can’t cook...and then where would I be?
So that’s why I’m here today. If you’re one of those people who whips out the toaster and a packet of two minute noodles when you have someone to impress, then this is the recipe for you. I’ve laid it all out in a fool-proof style so that you can perfect it with ease and immediately start impressing people with your domestic flare. I’ve decided to go with a dessert because...well, look at it! Do I really need more reason than that?
Oh calm down, ladies, it was a joke. Put those burning glares away, and save the flames for your bras. I grew up in the kitchen because I always adored cooking and baking. I bonded with Mum and Dad and Grandma as we stirred soups and shaped biscuits with our fingers. I was kneading bread dough and icing cakes long before I could reach the counter tops. I specifically remember putting cookie sheets on the floor so I could shape the little balls of chocolate chip/peanut butter/ oatmeal raisin goodness and line them up in rows with ease. Of course I wasn’t allowed to use the oven unsupervised before the age of 12, but that never stopped me. Like a true addict, sometimes I just needed to get my bake on when mum was busy. That’s where my easy-bake oven came in. You know the kind, those little ovens that you plug into the wall and put mini pans of cake batter into so they can be cooked by a little light bulb? I pumped out so many mini cakes and cookies and pies and muffins that my brother and I would have to hoard them into a picnic basket before Mum could see just how much sugar we were planning to digest. Then we would skip away with our basket to our tree fort and force our insulin to prove its worth. Yes, I’ve grown up with teaspoons in my fingers, and flour on my nose, and I think that’s why I’ve never really understood people who can’t cook to save their life. That’s not me being snobbish, or claiming that I’m the best chef in the world (but I totally am), but recently I’ve been asked questions about cooking and baking that I’ve always taken for granted as common knowledge. I’ve stood by and listened to a friend tell me that she doubled up on baking powder because she ran out of baking soda and ‘they’re basically the same thing.’ I had another friend add ¼ cup of salt to a cake because she lacked the ability to interpret that as a flaw in the recipe. Too many people that I know think measuring cups are redundant to the baking process, and I feel like everyone should know how to make a decent roux...or at least know what it is. And it’s not even my shock factor that has propelled me to write this article, it’s the massive amounts of frustration that I continually see bursting out of people who don’t have experience with preparing food. Potlucks become a co-dependent task, and any kind of dinner party is out of the question unless your menu consists of ordering take out, and to be quite honest, it’s annoying when you can’t master at least one impressive dish! I think everyone needs a signature dish...even the culinarily-challenged.
the lightly salted roast peanuts. You are welcome.) What you need to do: 1) Get yourself a 9 x 13 cake pan (33cm x 23cm) and make sure you wipe all of the dust out of it, because we all know you haven’t used it for a while. Also scrape all of the burnt crusty black stuff from the last time you baked. 2) Take your Oreos and break them into chunky pieces. I’m talking nice sized chunks - maybe a quarter of the cookie size. But that’s only approximate. If you sit there and divide each and every cookie into four equal pieces, you have a problem. 3) Lay the chunks of cookie in the bottom of the ungreased pan and spread them out til they loosely cover the bottom. Don’t pack them in there. Let them have a bit of space and freedom...it’s the least they deserve. 4) Take out a medium sauce pan (it’s that metal pot with a handle that your mum sometimes uses to make pasta sauce in) and add the confectioners’ sugar, the evaporated milk, the chocolate chips and the margarine.
Oreo Fudge Ice Cream Cake: You will need: 3-4 sleeves of chocolate sandwich cookies (This means Oreos. Don’t get anything other than Oreos. Oreos are the answer to this recipe. And life in general) 1 ¾ cups of confectioner’s sugar (This is icing sugar. It’s powdery and soft, looks like flour, and tastes like angels.) 1 350ml can of evaporated milk (This is not the same as condensed milk, so just don’t even go there.) 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips (Go for a good brand here. Quality chocolate or no chocolate. Stop being stingy when it comes to the important things in life.) ½ cup of margarine (If you don’t know what margarine is, not even I can save you) 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract (You can add a little extra because...hello, it’s vanilla, and vanilla = perfection) 2 litres of vanilla ice cream (Real ice cream. Not sugar free ice cream, or lite ice cream, or frozen yogurt...if you’re one of those people, just get out now. I don’t have time for you.) 1 ½ cups of dry roasted peanuts (If you’re a big fan of the salty+sweet combo, I recommend buying
5) Put that sauce pan on your stove top, and turn the burner (only the one that the pan is sitting on) to medium heat. Stir this lovely creation constantly, bring it to a boil, and let it boil for 8 minutes. (Use a metal spoon when you’re stirring, not a wooden one. Wooden spoons can retain water and ruin the eff out of your chocolate goo’s consistency. It’s also easier to scrape the bottom of the pan with so you can ensure you’re not burning any of it). 6) After you have stirred and boiled it for 8 minutes, remove it from the heat and add the vanilla. Then you need to set that pot of goodness aside to cool for a good long time. I’m talking at least two hours. Don’t get impatient or you’ll ruin everything. Stick it in the fridge and walk away. 7) Oh hey, welcome back. Hope you had an enjoyable and relaxing two hours! Now you need to get out your ice cream, and let it soften a little. Once it’s malleable, spoon it out in chunks onto the cookie chunks that you laid in the pan earlier. 8) Spread that ice cream around with the back of a spoon until it has covered all of the Oreo chunks evenly. It will inevitably seep in the spaces between the chunks, but that’s okay. Once it freezes, the ice cream will hold the cookies together in a delightful crust that doesn’t need to be baked, or have margarine added to it. Healthy living. 9) Once the ice cream is laid out, you can now take the FULLY COOLED fudgy topping out of the fridge and spoon that deliciously thick mofo of a beast out onto your ice cream cake. Cover the whole thing evenly and get right into all of the pan’s nooks and crannies. It’s not an easily satisfied dessert, but if you fill the spaces skilfully, it won’t let you down. You get what you give. 10) Garnish that fudge topping with a hearty sprinkling of roasted peanuts. And freeze overnight. 11) Cut into pieces, Instagram, then serve.
THE BATTLE YOU NEVER HEAR ABOUT
WHY YOU SHOULD WATCH: ORPHAN BLACK
By Scott Moyes
by Ethan Sills
Depression is an ugly, ugly beast. It’s often misunderstood too. You see, it’s not a case of ‘just getting over it’. It can’t be cured with a joke and nor does it end when the tears stop flowing. It’s a state of mind and it’s an extremely dark place to be in.
Over the past few years it seems that everyone in America is trying to make a TV show: not content with letting the likes of HBO and Showtime hog all the cable glory, every American based channel seems to be making their own original scripted programming with fluctuating success. BBC America, which is, funnily enough, the American home of BBC programming, is one of those joining this new trend, probably to have something successful that isn’t solely Doctor Who.
It matters not what brought it on - depression can warp your most basic moral values because in your mind, there is no light at the end of the tunnel. It consumes you. And when you can’t see any hope for the future, you simply stop caring. Cricket is a breeding ground for depression. I do love the sport - I’m the type of guy who can watch five straight days of a test match and still get a thrill out of seeing a draw. But I can’t think of many sports I’d want to play less. The thing you have to understand about cricket is it’s not a team sport at all. There may be 11 fieldsmen and two batsman out there competing, but there’s only one bowler delivering the ball to one man trying to smash it out of the park. It’s a game full of individual battles. Statistics. Numbers. Your total score may be an accumulation of eleven players but at the end of the day, someone will have scored the most runs and somebody else will have taken the least amount of wickets. Poor team performances are quite often pinned on single players. But the physical battle doesn’t even compare to the mental side of the game. Opposition teams are like sharks that can smell the smallest ounce of fear from a mile away. But they don’t strike with one quick, sharp blow. They eat away at you, slowly and steadily. Whittling you down, waiting for you to lose your cool and play just one rash shot. Cricket is rife with sledging and nothing is off limits. Wives, children, sisters. If it’s going to upset you, it’s going to be murmured in your ear. Not just in a fleeting moment of unsportsmanlike behavior, but hour, after hour, after hour. But the bitter icing on the cake is when play is finished for the day. You’re not returning home to your wife’s roast dinner and your child’s warm embrace. Cricket players are constantly on tour and often in the most desolate places in the world. They’re away for months on end in places like Bangladesh where you’re usually confined to a hotel a room, constantly living out of a suitcase with no sense of escape. Imagine if you were dismissed for a golden duck that morning. Left to dwell on how you’ve let your teammates down. What if you didn’t particularly get along with those teammates in the first place? Wouldn’t that feeling of isolation and solidarity absolutely cripple you? Would that be the sort of thing that depression feeds on? It’s something that Lou Vincent suffered from throughout his cricketing career. Maybe he still does. But it’s that vulnerability that made him a prime target for match fixing. A man who wasn’t rock solid mentally was pounced upon by the corrupt powers that be with an intoxicating amount of money. The proposition would have been too good to refuse in his unstable state of mind. Lou Vincent may have played a handful of games for the Black Caps but by no means was he part of the elite group. He wasn’t signing million-dollar IPL contracts for a couple of weeks of work. No, he was a fringe player who like any sportsman, has to think about earning the most amount of money possible to be able to set himself up for the future – you’ve got less than 15 years before you’re cast out into the wilderness. And it may sound like I’m trying to defend Lou Vincent here but it’s quite the opposite, actually. At the end of the day he’s been exposed as a cheat and deserves to be punished. I can’t tell you the full extent of his match-fixing ways. But when you consider how much he has profited from lying to teammates and acting illegally, quite frankly I think a prison sentence is about the only viable option here. But I do see how a player like Lou Vincent could be so easily coerced into such despicable actions. When the news broke I didn’t feel outraged, nor particularly angry. To me it just highlighted how a seemingly humble and compassionate man could be driven to such lows. And it made me wonder how many other instances like these have gone under the radar? Lou Vincent made it happen on twelve separate occasions before being exposed. What other cases don’t we know about? Is there an entire criminal ring waiting to be exposed? It could be Chris Cairns, Darryl Tuffey or neither. But when you’re the sort of player who gets offered the equivalent of a year’s salary just to bowl a single no-ball or play a non-scoring shot, you can’t tell me that you wouldn’t at least consider it. And that sort of temptation is what worries me most.
And while their first show Ripper Street has been canned, the channel has struck gold with only their second original venture; Orphan Black has roared onto the scene and has outshined its Time Lord companion. Leading lady Tatiana Maslany has already rightfully stolen numerous critics’ awards away from the likes of Claire Danes and Bryan Cranston. If you are not already engrossed in the adventures of the Clone Club, then here is why you should watch Orphan Black. The What: Sarah Manning is a British orphan who migrated to the States as a child and grew up getting herself into trouble. Now in her twenties, Sarah has fled from her boyfriend to join her adopted brother Felix. However, after disembarking her train, Sarah watches a woman leave all her possessions on the platform, and right before the stranger jumps into the path of a train, the two exchange a brief look but enough for Sarah to realise this woman is her exact double. Confused and intrigued, Sarah steals the now vacant identity of Elizabeth Childs in hopes of starting fresh in a new life. But the seemingly perfect solution is shaken as Sarah begins to realise things are not quite right and makes the ultimate discovery – she is a clone, one of many identical women across the world, and she has entered the madness just as a shadowy organisation is hunting them down. The Who: Canadian actress Tatiana Maslany is the lead here, putting on a very convincing British accent to play Sarah (I presume she is British due to it airing on BBC America). She uses her natural accent for Beth, but her roles don’t stop there; as this is about clones, Maslany also portrays unstable housewife Allison Hendrix and biology student Cosima Niehaus, and for the sake of not spoiling I’ll stop listing them there, but expect to see several more across both seasons. Our non clone characters include Beth’s shady boyfriend Paul, Sarah’s flamboyant foster brother Felix and their secretive adopted mother, Mrs S, along with a slew of villains ranging from dark intentioned scientists and members of a mysterious religious cult. The Why: The show never stops running from the moment it begins; we see Sarah encountering Beth and then watching her die within the first minutes, and for the next forty five minutes we are on a whirlwind adventure that merely gets things going. The first season is an edge of year seat watch as we dive into the many layered mysteries making up the clones lives, and the second season has already upped the tension thanks to its endless stream of plot twists. Tatiana Maslany and her multiple incredible performances is one of the biggest reasons to watch, as she effortlessly creates vastly unique personalities to match the different accents and hair, and each character is a joy to watch. The tension is kept high as we are constantly left wondering who will learn that Sarah is not who she is pretending to be, and it is one of those shows where you will never be quite sure who to trust and who will still be alive at the end of an episode. And while it sounds rather dark and gritty, Felix and Allison provide some truly hilarious scenes and there are plenty of lighter character moments that helps to shape the vast cast. Final Thoughts: While at times it can be a bit too twisty and complicated for its own good, Orphan Black is one of the best sci-fi shows out there right now, if not the best. It is a conspiracy thriller, a relationship drama and a grounded science fiction all in one, and these elements all fit perfectly together. Murder, comedy, nudity, men with tails, techno dancing sequences and sex in mini vans; there is something for everyone here, and it will be easy to catch up on the current thirteen episodes before Season Two finishes. Even if you don’t think you enjoy sci fi, step into the Clone Club and I swear you shall never look back.
What to do when… You crash your car.
by Matthew Cattin No matter how cautious you are on the roads, car accidents can, and statistically probably will, happen to you at some point in your life, whether it’s a 2km/h collision with a letterbox or a 50km/h pileup with a herd of cows. Unfortunately, it’s just one of those shitty things and no amount of road code revision, positive thinking or power of prayer can save you from this inevitable fact; people make mistakes. Learning to drive is an exciting time of course – the roads give you a brilliant sense of freedom and independence. However, while there is much emphasis on how to drive safely and not crash, there seems to be very little info on how to crash, and what to do when you’ve had an accident. So, being a sensible and responsible young lad, I thought I would assemble a few points and tips you may want to follow if you ever find yourself in such a position. 1. You’ve just had a collision with another vehicle. Faaaaaark! You screech to a halt on the road and let out a few expletives. Now, first thing’s first, check yourself and your passengers for injuries, enquire how they feel, and if everybody is all good, breathe a sigh of relief. While you’re sighing, breathe a few more times too and calm yourself down. Crashes can be terrifying and everything will run smoother if you’re cool as a cucumber. 2. If you’ve just had a collision, your car is likely still on the road and this isn’t all that safe. If your car is still in working order, it’s a good call to get it off the road before it causes any more trouble. Once safely parked up, get out and check up on the passengers of the other vehicle – do this before checking the damage to your car. Vehicles can be replaced, people cannot. If your car is too damaged to move safely, turn the vehicle off and if you have cones or warning triangles, place them on the road around the site. 3. With any luck, the occupants of the other vehicle are all good too. If they’re not however, call an ambulance ASAP. Not all injuries are external and it’s always better to be safe than sorry. 4. Even if the accident is minor, you’re still required to report it to the police. So stop snapchatting pics of the crash and call the boys in blue. If it’s not a major accident, then your situation is not an emergency - call your local station, not 111. Either way, make sure the police are called. 5. Once the po-po have been informed and are on their way, sit tight, relax and try your best to console anybody who may be shaken up by the incident. Same goes for injuries – if the ambulance is on your way, do your best to keep those who are injured calm and comfortable. Unless there is imminent danger (like a fire), don’t try and move anybody – you can do more damage.
6. If everybody is okay but you’re flipping your lid, maybe call your family and get them to come down – it’s always nice to have a bit of support in times like these. As nice as it is to have your mum around though, if she is a worrier who is liable to break down and cause a scene in the sensitive situation, call somebody calm and collected instead. 7. When the police arrive, they’ll check your licenses, breath test the drivers, check vehicle damage and make both parties fill out an accident report. Be honest; everybody makes mistakes and being proven wrong in court will sting more than honestly facing the consequences. The police will then give you an incident report number which you can pass on to your insurance company. This number proves that police attended the scene and allows the insurance companies to verify facts and get details of the incident straight from the horse’s mouth. 8. Speaking of insurance, you’re going to want that. It can be a delicate situation, sure, but it’s never a bad idea to swap licenses with the other party to copy details. Grab their full name and license number, and then swap contact details too. If they’re upset or aggressive in any way, maybe let the police handle it for you – you don’t want any trouble. 9. After swapping your details, it’s a good idea to have a good look at the other vehicle involved. You’ll want to have a pretty good inspection of their ride so you know what’s broken and what ain’t as some sneaky buggers will try and blame you for dings and scratches that had nothing to do with the accident. Be a good dude and suggest the other party does the same with your car too. It’s a good idea to take photos too, if it’s not awkward, as these will help in the insurance aftermath. While you’re at it, take a photo or two of the accident from different angles and points of view. You can never have too many. 10. Once everything is sussed, the police have checked it out, and details have been swapped, you’re free to carry on with your life. Take it easy for the rest of the day, try your best to relax, and if you experience any aches, pains, headaches or bruising etc, check it out with a doctor. Like I said, not all injuries are externally visible and your health is your number one priority. 11. The aftermath might hurt your wallet, especially if the accident was your fault, but try your darndest to stay positive. Yes, car accidents are shitty, but if nobody was hurt, it really isn’t so bad – not everybody can be so lucky. If somebody was hurt (or worse) however, don’t feel like you have to handle it all on your own, seek help. Your injured feelings are just as important as physical ailments and there is no shame in reaching out. 23
written and illustrated by Matthew Cattin Running on from my monsters editorial of a few issues back, I thought I would bring to you readers a summary of the worst (or the best? I really don’t know…) monster hybrids out there. First making an appearance in the early 2000s, this dire breed of film is generally the product of a horrible idea, little to no budget, appalling acting and special effects not seen since the dark ages; they really do have to be seen to believed. Often, abysmal films will fall into a ‘so bad they’re good’ category, but sadly for these horrendous hybrids, this is not the case and once you’ve sat painfully through one, you’ve seen them all. They do however all have a few things in common so if any of the following appeals, these films may be for you; multiple decapitations, breasts, unrealistic volumes of blood, breasts, cheesy monster theme songs, boobs and countless continuity errors. To save you the trouble of watching these films, I have chosen and rated my favourite (or least favourite) miserable monster hybrids.
I probably don’t need to do too much explaining for y’all to get this one, but I think the tagline sums it up perfectly; half fish, half snake… All death. Why it was a necessary addition to the film world? Well because the simple anaconda and piranha aren’t deadly enough, I presume… OH, and did I mention it’s at least one hundred foot long? It also takes down a helicopter because PIRANHACONDA. Amazingly, this film managed to pull Michael Madsen (Kill Bill and Justin Bieber’s A Long As You Love Me video) and our very own semi-famous celeb Rachel Hunter. Perhaps it was this splash out in the budget that caused Piranhaconda to look like a Microsoft PowerPoint animation. IMDB Rating: 3.0 Originality Rating: 4 Power Rating: 6 Total: 13.0
Combining the scary halves of two terrifying sea creatures, Sharktopus is the aquatic spork of the oceans, rivers and mid to upper class, predominantly white, seaside communities. Genetically engineered for combat by the US
Navy, Sharktopus was designed to be a force for good, but after the controlling device malfunctioned, the tentacled bastard went on a killing rampage. With eight tentacles (each coming to a sharp, penetrative point) and rows of razor sharp teeth, even the ocean’s regular predators are in trouble, no match for the might of Sharktopus. With bloodthirsty ease, this devilish creature takes down great whites, bungee jumpers, baddies that monologue too much before making their move and hotties in bikinis (pretty much the staple prey of any movie monster, and with good reason; tittaaaays). Sharktopus even has a theme song, with great lines such as this; “when the tentacles do tangle you will be in a strangle,” and “when you see the frenzied feeding you will be the next bleeding”. Shit! With rhymes like dat, you best watch your back! IMDB Rating: 3.3 Originality Rating: 6 Power Rating: 7 Total: 16.3
When, you guessed it, a well-meaning medical experiment involving mosquitoes goes wrong, Ray (a convict) becomes Mansquito. Hungry for blood, and a mate, he escapes the lab and goes on a rampage, killing folks and making an incredibly irritating whining noise. Essentially a reimagining of the classic scifi The Fly, only shit, Mansquito is yet another monster hybrid movie that should have been left in the trash can where was found. Although this one is perhaps a little more believable than the likes of Ghost Shark, Mansquito straight up just isn’t a very formidable monster. IMDB Rating: 3.3 Originality Rating: 2 Power Rating: 3 Total: 8.3
When the only thing lower than a shark film budget is the director’s dignity, there’s only one thing for it – take the shark out of the equation from the get go. Probably one of the worst ideas to ever happen, Ghost Shark is exactly what it sounds like. When a fisherman has his prized catch eaten by a great white, he and his daughter torture and slaughter the animal, before throwing it overboard. It sinks to the bottom of a submerged magical cave where it is resurrected as a magic ghost
shark (shiiiiiiiit). It quickly gets revenge upon the fishermen before going wild at the idyllic seaside town of Harmony. As Ghost Shark, opportunities to exact revenge drastically increase, due to the fact the phantom fish can now kill anybody land or sea, so long as there is a body of water handy. That’s right, showers, swimming pools, garden hoses and even puddles are no longer safe from Ghost Shark, oh no, Ghost Shark is everywhere, just like Jesus. How do you kill something that’s already dead?! You don’t. It kills you. IMDB Rating: 3.5 Originality Rating: 3 Power Rating: 10 Total: 16.5
Half alligator, half steroids, Gatoroid differs slightly from the other hybrids, due to the fact it’s half animal, half performance enhancing drug. Created as a means of pest control (Mega Pythons were causing a shit storm and eating all the alligators), the Gatoroids themselves turned into pests, causing a ruckus and devouring a lot of bad actors. When Mega Python swallowed an entire train whole however, well something just had to be done. You can do it Gatoroid! I choose you! IMDB Rating: 3.0 Originality Rating: 2 Power Rating: 7 Total: 12.0 Hybrids I would love to see. Cougarine Half middle-aged woman, half wolverine, Cougarine spends her days hunting for only-just-legal men on Tinder. But oh, what’s that? No full body shots? How come, babe? BECAUSE SHE’S HALF WOLVERINE. BLOCK HER! Stingbat What could be scarier than a stingray, you ask? A stingray with elongated bat wings that terrorises from the skies, impaling and whipping from above. Puppen #plottwist. A puppy kitten hybrid that digs up bones and buries its own shit, Puppen is the lovable little monster that you’ll do anything to take home. Just watch out for that no-good villain PussyBitch!
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SLEEPY STROLLING by Laurien Barks I’m a restless sleeper. I’ve always known it, thanks to a childhood littered with cray cray sleep over parties, and the observational criticism that I was always subjected to the morning after. I’ve been told I make noises (some are words, some are not), I fidget, I occasionally hold my breath, and I’m pretty notorious for nuzzling into the neck/back/ legs/stomach/face of anyone I share a bed with. My dreams are often interactive, and it isn’t rare for me to wake myself, and anyone else in the general area, with hysterical laughter, dramatic sobbing, or a weird mixture of the two. When my best friend stays the night, she has learned that the floor is often a better option. That is unless she’s in the mood to take advantage of my unconscious snuggle advances, or is willing to stroke my hair and comfort my sleeping soul until the random scornful words stop escaping from my lips. When we were little and had to share a bed in a hotel, my brother would wake up with bruises from my lack of limb control. It’s really not pretty. To be honest I admire anyone who can make it through the night in the same room as me, let alone the same bed. It’ll take a brave man to commit himself to my bed for the rest of his life. Or a brave cat. Who am I kidding... It’ll be a cat. As much of a pain as I am when I’m in bed, I’m even more of a pain when I’m out of it. That’s right, I’m a sleepwalker too! Because shouting and spooning in my sleep wasn’t enough to deal with, the universe also decided to make me a night wanderer! It doesn’t happen on a super regular basis, but every once in a while, I’ll wake up in the morning and hear all about my night time escapades from the family and friends that I both disturbed and entertained the night before. I seem to have three go-to adventures that just kind of recycle themselves, and I don’t know if they ring true to all sleep-walkers, or if they’re original to me. Either way, I’ll share them with you. Non sleep-walkers seem to find these kinds of adventures absolutely fascinating!
The ‘Let there be light’ Apparently the darkness just gets to be too much to handle sometimes, so I get out of bed, wander to the farthest corner of the house, and start turning on each and every light one by one. I’m talking room lights, lamps, porch lights, the whole works. My old house had multiple levels so I had to climb a lot of stairs to make sure I got each and every light, but don’t worry, not a single one was missed. Once all of the lights are on, I wander back to bed and go back to sleep right away, while the rest of the household dismantles my luminous efforts. The ‘Move ALL the things!’ If I ever live with people who are terrified of ghosts, this one could get me in a lot of trouble. Mostly because this seems to be my most quick and silent sleep walking crime. I can only confirm that it is, in fact, my doing because I’ve been spotted on enough occasions to secure my guilt. I’ll just get out of bed, decisively walk to one chosen object, and move it. Sometimes I move it far away, sometimes I just move it a little ways...depends on the night. Phones, TV remotes, forks, hair gel… I don’t discriminate, I just move the damn thing. So if we ever end up having a slumber party and you wake up to find your charger cable in the carton of eggs... I’m sorry. The ‘Okay, honey.’ The ‘Okay, honey.’ The ‘Okay, honey.’ This one’s great! It’s a lot of fun if you aren’t me, because it really involves a lot of audience participation. These are the times when my sleep wandering mission is conversational! I combine sleep-walking with sleep talking for one fantastically confused combo. Here’s the catch, while I am able to string together comprehensible sentences, I’m only able to manage one or two. So that basically means that if you’re my lucky chat buddy, we will have the same 10 second conversation over and over until you take my shoulders and walk me back to my bed. Some past sample conversations include:
‘What are you doing up, Laurien?’ ‘I have to put a bandana in my hair.’ ‘Why?’ ‘I don’t want to ruin my hair.’ ‘Your hair won’t get ruined.’ ‘I have to put a bandana in my hair.’ ‘No you don’t.’ ‘I don’t want to ruin my hair.’ (This went on for quite a while) As well as: ‘Why are you standing in front of the microwave?’ ‘I’m heating up a beanie baby.’ ‘No you’re not, go to sleep.’ ‘Oh.’ ‘Laurien, go back to bed okay?’ ‘But I’m heating up a beanie baby.’ ‘No, that’s my tea in the microwave.’ ‘Oh.’
As you can see, it’s a lot of fun, and you can turn it into a fun challenge. Just how many different ways can you have the same conversation with a vertically sleeping weirdo (I suggest introducing foreign languages if you want to play on expert mode). Those are the only three variations of sleep adventures that I’ve managed to be a part of so far. That’s not to say there won’t be more. I’m still waiting for the day that I figure out how to get out of the house and wake up on the lawn or in a tree. All I know is that fidgeting and laughing I can handle, but if the sleep walking escalates too much more, I’m going to have to start handcuffing myself to the headboard. And when your only housemate is a cat, that kind of behaviour turns real creepy real fast.
SCIENCE IS DUMB An Ill-Informed Rant by Ethan Sills I had the pleasure of seeing Transcendence the other weekend – the pleasurable part being that it was free and my friend and I only wasted time, not money on this overly long disappointment. However, hidden amongst the stilted acting and a plot that was stupid and complex at the same time, both my friend and I were rather unsettled by the grander theme that was trying to be portrayed here. A basic summary for those who have not seen this: Johnny Depp invents artificial intelligence software, Depp is shot and begins to die, Mrs Depp uploads his consciousness to a computer to save him, but cyber-Depp goes wrong and starts to take over the internet. While not the best film, it had a rather disturbing message about how reliant we are becoming on technology, the same message Spike Jonze portrayed in Her earlier this year but in a which more radical and, at times, thought provoking way. I saw Transcendence the same week I happened to catch a Paul Henry interview where he was discussing how the United Nations is having talks about how to protect us all from ‘killer robots’. You probably think that sounds crazy or made up, and I did too, but a quick Google search proved that this is real and that there is cause for them to have this discussion: there is technology out there that does allow some
computers and robotic devices to think and judge for themselves and perform actions without human commands. So the question I raise today is: why the fuck do we need to be having these conversations? Why have people gone ahead and invented machines that can think for themselves and can act and think and kill without being controlled by a human being? Is this really a necessity for the future of man kind? I call this an ill informed rant because I am not aware of the whole definitive reasoning behind this. In the Paul Henry interview, the professor being interviewed said that one reason why things like drone aircrafts have been invented is so that we are not endangering human lives – instead, we can fight wars where one side can be safe and the other side can have dozens, maybe even hundreds, of civilians killed at once. Personally though, I can see some of this coming down to ‘we can invent this, so why don’t we?’ Some so-called geniuses somewhere found a way to create technology like this, so they went ahead and started building machines and laying the groundwork for all of this. It is very nice that they are smart enough to do this, but it seems this is a case where rational thinking was overpowered by the inventor’s own desire to create this self-thinking technology. I just completely do not see why anyone would be
under the impression that our society would be better with this technology in it. Looking back at the war issue, why isn’t some of the millions of dollars that goes into creating stuff like drones instead being put towards, I dunno, removing the need for warfare in the first place? I think the easier way to fix unnecessary wars is to try and find a way to end them, not thinking “let’s make bigger and better weapons instead!!!” I am not a science-y person and I do not actively follow the latest technology news. The one thing I really know in life is the entertainment industry, and if movies and television has taught me anything (I, Robot, Terminator, Marvel’s Ultron; even the Daleks told their creator to piss off), it’s that robots really can’t be trusted. This may seem like quite an idiotic comparison to make – I am well aware that none of those things are actually real – but every time there is a report about machines in factories that can recognise faces and emotions, or I see a little robot doing Gangnam Style on Graham Norton, I feel a tiny bit unsettled as it seems that self thinking technology is becoming more and more of a reality, and I really do not see how it is going to benefit us at all. Now would someone mind hiding this article so SkyNet can’t find me when they take over? 29
KINDNESS IS HARD
By Ariel Bruenska The other day I was watching a video online. It was one of those thought provoking, almost ‘feel good’ videos. One of the ones that has potential for warm and fuzzies, but there’s always so much self-reflection involved that you never really end up feeling good. It popped up on my Facebook newsfeed, and since I had been studying for a whole 10 minutes, I obviously decided that rewarding myself with a video study break was an appropriate use of time. It was a simple video, nothing too ‘out there’. Basically the narrator was telling the story about how he had gone to primary with a girl who had no friends, and while he was never mean to her, he didn’t befriend her either. It wasn’t long before the girl moved away, and even though he’s now 40-years-old, he still regrets not doing more for her. It wasn’t so much the story that I related to, but rather a sentence that he said: ‘kindness is hard’. I was taken aback because it struck a chord with me. It immediately put a label on something that I have experienced for years but never had words for. And he did it with a mere three. Kindness. Is. Hard. That’s not to say that I’m never kind. And it’s not to say that being kind is always a challenge. It’s incredibly easy in everyday life, in everyday situations, and with people that you know. If I love you, I will mock you and make fun of you til the cows come home, but I will also drop anything and everything if it means making your life easier. If I like you, I will still tease you, but I will do what I can to keep you happy. If I absolutely detest you, I will try my darndest to treat you with the utmost respect, because even though you make my insides feel like Satan committing arson, I know that you’ve most likely gone through a lot more shit than I’ve ever had to, and I’ll be damned if I make that worse for you. Kindness is easy when you know who you’re giving it to. You know what they need, and you know how they’ll react. Strangers are a whole other story.
Sure it’s easy enough to offer a smile to a stranger here and there, a ‘good morning’ when you make eye contact, or the odd compliment when you like their blazer. But what about when it comes to those acts of kindness that mean more. The ones that you have to think about, and consider, and then actually go about initiating. Those are the ones that seem to take the most courage. And I think that’s a little bit sad. I think that the fact that my heart races and I have to fight with every fibre of my being to muster up the words ‘are you okay?’ to a lone crying stranger in the street is sad. I think the fact that I didn’t remind that girl in the grocery store that she was beautiful after I heard her boyfriend tell her otherwise, is sad. I think the fact that I have seen that lonely girl, whose starved appearance reflects the hollowness in her eyes, walk by herself past my house every single day, and haven’t so much as offered a ‘hello’, is sad. Yet as hard as I work to change, and as much as I wish the thought of reaching out to strangers wasn’t terrifying, I can’t seem to shake it. And this video reminded me that I’m not alone in thinking this. I see it happen every day. People walking by. People ignoring. People saying ‘it’s not my problem’. And when another person’s misfortune does become our problem, when there’s a car accident, or a fire, or a medical emergency, far too often do I see my peers becoming concerned about how it is going to affect their lives. A couple weeks ago I was boarding a train into uni, and as I approached the platform, I saw a woman lying on the floor of the train with a small crowd around her. She was being taken care of by the train officials, and there was an ambulance on the way, but when something like that happens, I’m always compelled to stand and wait until I have some kind of confirmation that the person will be properly cared for. I know it seems pointless, because there’s nothing I would be able to do in a situation like that, I have no medical training, I can’t save a life. Yet, I can’t bring myself to leave. So as
I was standing there, waiting to hear the ambulance siren to grant me my exit from the platform, I started to tune into what other people were saying. The majority of the conversations that I overheard were centred around being late. A woman was laying on the floor of a train, a woman who we later found out to be at great risk of dying from heart complications, and people were worried about when they would be getting to work. Even when we heard the ambulance approaching, my friend asked to leave so we wouldn’t be late to uni. I knew the woman would be in good hands, but even still, the thought of rushing into my classes and making promptness a priority seemed redundant and selfish. I am by no means judging anyone for being worried about their own schedules. It’s a part of life. There are always times when each and every one of us prioritizes ourselves over someone else. Some people do it more than others, some people do it in different ways than others. Whether it’s a job, studies, leisure, we all have aspects of our lives that place us in a higher position of importance than anyone else. And that’s okay. That makes us human. It’s when our schedules become so blinding and individually encompassing that it becomes upsetting. When we are so involved in our own agenda, in our own head, in our own world of people and places and belongings, that the thought of reaching out to another human being seems so incredibly risky that we often convince ourselves not to do it. And I know we all tell ourselves that if we were in a certain situation we would act morally and do the right thing, but the more I’m exposed to the world around me, the less I believe that. And I don’t believe that it’s because the world is full of bad people, I think that it’s full of irrationally scared people. Why do we avoid eye contact with that homeless man who sits by the park? Why do we find it so nerve wracking to approach that lonely kid at the far table? Why can’t I bring myself to say hello to that tear stained girl who walks past my house? Because kindness is hard. Kindness in its most extreme form is hard. Kindness that throws off our norm, that is full of unknown reactions and consequences, kindness that puts our dignity and ego at risk is hard. Truly selfless kindness is hard. Because we think about
it. And when we think with our own minds about our own situations, those situations immediately become about us. That’s when it becomes scary. When it’s about us. So why not make it about them? It’s the fear that holds us back. As soon as you take that away all you’re left with is potential and a willing magnetism toward kindness. If every small act of kindness, pre-empted or not, was considered only from the other person’s point of view, I truly believe the world would be a friendlier place. It’s not the potential effect that we’ll have on the other person’s life that scares us away, it’s the potential effect it will have on ours. If you think about the people who have made a real impact on your life, or the people you are the most fond of, chances are pretty darn good that they have treated you with a truly selfless kindness. Their actions are most likely the kind that, if you were asked to perform them to a stranger, would induce an instant sickened anxiety in your stomach. I once had someone sit next to me on the bus and start a friendly conversation because I looked like I ‘needed someone to talk to’. And you know what... I did. And even though sitting next to a girl on a mostly empty bus to start a conversation could have tainted their dignity with the label ‘creepy’, or resulted in confused looks, or thrown off their usual bus agenda of reading Harry Potter, they decided that it was worth the risk to offer a lonely stranger a little kindness. I will remember it for the rest of my life, because it’s the coolest feeling in the world when you realize that someone you’ve never met before is looking out for you. So why not spread that cool feeling around? I guess all I’m getting at is this; we’re all human beings and we’re all in this together. I’m not preaching for an idealistic Utopia, that’s not my point in all of this. My point is that if we just took a moment to analyse our priorities, to step away from our own self-constructed worlds, and see the bigger picture through each other’s’ eyes instead of our own...maybe we would be less terrified to have each other’s’ backs. The world is always going to be a scary place, why make it worse than it needs to be by trying to survive it without each other. That’s all I’m saying. Kindness is hard. But not impossible.
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The Fault In Our Stars Directed by: Josh Boone Starring: Shailene Woodley, Ansel Elgort, Nat Wolff
cancer. She is forced to attend a cancer support group where she meets Augustus Waters, a 17-year-old boy in remission from osteosarcoma. They bond over their mutual love for a book and the search for its author, falling in love in the process. If I had not read the book prior to seeing the movie I would have thought the movie was okay, but as I have read the book at least 10 times I was very disappointed by the adaption. John Green has this amazing ability where he writes teen fiction that is somehow authentic and not soppy. However the movie (directed by Josh Boone) was cheesy and weak in a lot of ways. The casting of Hazel (Shailene Woodley) was all wrong - she is supposed to be a quick-witted and cynical teenager, Woodley was too sweet for the part. Ansel Elgort however did nail the character of Augustus; he was warm and funny with a touch of arrogance. The movie was in no way as captivating as the book, however it did partially capture the heart-wrenching sadness. This was the only movie I have ever been to where at least half the theatre was sobbing in certain scenes. This in itself was distracting, but I was happy that Boone managed to evoke such sorrow.
Reviewed by Mary Wilkins The Fault in Our Stars (TFIOS) is a movie based on the novel by John Green. I was lucky enough to win tickets to the premiere of TFIOS a month before it was released in theatres by sending in a photo of all my John Green and TFIOS merchandise, saying that the book was my favourite thing in the world and I NEEDED to go. Needless to say, my expectations were built extremely high prior to the screening of the movie. TFIOS is the story of 16-year-old Hazel, a girl with stage four terminal thyroid
Godzilla Directed by: Gareth Edwards Starring: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Bryan Cranston, Elizabeth Olsen
Another thing that annoyed me was that the book appeals to both genders as well as people of all ages; I know plenty of adults who love it. But because the movie is so corny and teeny I feel like it will generally only appeal to young teenage girls. The word lame might be a bit strong but I think the movie won’t accumulate the wide audience that the book has. I do realise that my review has turned into a bitch-fest of how much better the book is compared to the movie, but it is just the truth, the book is better in every way! I may have been quite critical of the film, but I did actually enjoy parts of it, and yes it made me cry. So if you are a 14-year-old girl (unlikely as this is in debate) you will probably enjoy the movie and if not, read the book. It is truly remarkable.
day of the accident, and he learns of his father’s theory that it was not an earthquake that caused the collapse but something more sinister. When they return to the supposedly condemned area, they find an unnatural structure sticking out of the earth, and what hatches from it leads to our massive monster destruction. A lot of reviews I read online before I saw this talked about how the human characters were not very developed. I agree with that, but personally, I really didn’t give a fuck about Ford and his quest to find his family again. If I wanted a moving family drama, I’d go see a moving family drama; I came to see Godzilla, and that means I want to see a giant lizard monster knocking over buildings and causing mayhem. So really I think this would have greatly benefited by cutting back on the family crap: it didn’t add much asides from allowing Ford to move from one place to another, but I think the whole army aspect could have covered that instead.
Reviewed by Ethan Sills Monster movies are one of the oldest genres of cinema, and Godzilla towers above the rest in terms of pop culture recognition. So it was inevitable that this infamous Japanese character would get a CGI remake, especially for his 60th anniversary. I had high expectations leading into this based on the perfectly executed trailer alone, and most of them were met. Fifteen years after a mysterious cocoon was found in the Philippines, shortly followed by an earthquake that destroys a Japanese nuclear plant, US marine Ford Brody (Kick-Ass’ Aaron Taylor-Johnson) returns to Japan when his scientist father (Bryan Cranston), is arrested. Ford’s parents worked at the plant the
Ultimately though, I did enjoy this. I was a bit apprehensive when I first walked out of the cinema, mostly because this is a monster movie with little monster in it (we don’t actually see any monsters until about 45 minutes in). Reflecting on it though while writing this, the last sequence does make up for the lack of monster we get during the first half of the film, and the little snippets we do see builds the tension. Gareth Edwards did some great directing here, and there was amazing cinematography and music on top of this. The big kudos goes to the special effects which are perhaps the highlight of the film: Godzilla has come a long way from being a man in a suit, and looks pretty damn realistic here for a hundred foot tall, nuclearproof lizard monster. The trailer also does a great job of misleading us beforehand, so expect several surprises that actually make the experience better. They could have made better use of the acting pedigree here, such as Oscar-nominees Ken Watanabe and Sally Hawkins who mostly just explain things - perhaps they could have made better leads? But Godzilla is still a very enjoyable blockbuster: not the greatest balance between character and mayhem, but a fun ride all the same.
Agents of Shield Season One Created by Joss Whedon Starring: Clark Gregg, Ming-Na Wen, Brett Dalton
cheaper than hiring him for a cameo in Shield, a cameo which will likely will never happen. Agents of Shield is created by Joss Whedon, the man behind Buffy The Vampire Slayer, and 2012’s The Avengers. Joss’s brother Jed also has a hand in the creating the series. Agents of Shield follows a rag tag team of misfit agents who are basically the clean up crew for messy alien objects and artifacts left from the Marvel films. The team deals with a strange object or renegade super hero each week, reminiscent of a family friendly version of The X-files, or Fringe. Not everything has to be dark, it’s nice to see humour here, but it doesn’t exactly embrace its wackier side enough, leaving it a little bland at times. The series hasn’t mastered its tone yet. Shield takes a while to build up steam. We have to remember that this is a Joss Whedon series and they often don’t find themselves or their characters until a few seasons in. The first season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer was a little rough. The only Whedon series that nailed its tone in its first season is probably Firefly. The worlds Joss creates are massive, the dialogue unique. It becomes difficult to immerse yourselves into these shows straight away. They can even be a little jarring. It takes time to grab you but based on Joss’s track record it’s normally worth hanging in there.
Reviewed by Clint Milne Agents of Shield is an odd beast, a trans-media product attempting narrative coherency with its big cinematic brothers, the films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This means things that happen in the films effect the television series and vise versa. It surprises me that a television series was Marvel’s first choice to dip it’s toes into the trans-medial waters, a video game wouldn’t have been as restricted in what special effects it could use, and I’m pretty sure paying Robert Downey Jr. to be a voice actor for a day would probably be
It Happened One Night (1934) Starring: Clark Gable, Claudette Colbert, Walter Connolly Directed by: Frank Capra
This series has had a lot of negativity behind it. The fans of the comics want more comic-lore sprinkled in, the fans of the movies want to see Iron Man this leads to some harsh judgment that I don’t think the series deserves. It’s doing the trans-media thing pretty well with its universe dramatically altered after certain events in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Shields’ ties to the films lead to high expectations, but it also enriches the experience of both. Stay with the show until it syncs up the events in Captain America 2 if you can. I’m definitely interested to see what this series has to come.
While Ellie makes her way, her father searches for her in an airplane, arguing with secretaries and investigators because he is unable to find her. Peter learns the truth about Ellie’s intentions and offers to help her get to Mr Westley in exchange for her story. In this unexpected romance Warne and Ellie experience the discomforts of a rocky bus ride, hitch hiking, sleeping on hay in a deserted barn and eating raw carrots (which is not so shocking these days) to name a few. Despite these hiccups they also experience the joys of tourist camps, working together to play a mock-fight so they can get away from the detectives her father sent and growing to love each other despite their social differences.
Revieved by Luseane Tupouniua Throwback to one of the greatest romantic comedies in film history, It Happened One Night is a film created based on a story by Samuel Hopkins Adams. In the opening scenes we meet Ellie a stubborn young woman whom is practically held prisoner on her father’s yacht and on a hunger strike to protest. This is due to her father’s disapproval of her becoming the wife (in name only) of a wealthy young man named King Westley. In the midst of arguing she flees from her room to the deck, leaps overboard and swims for Florida. Once obtaining a bus ticket she set off with hopes to meet her husband in New York. This is where she encounters Peter Warne an overconfident street-smart newspaper reporter.
A classic in every sense of the word, this film has it all; humour, sexiness and wisdom. It Happened One Night is also damn beautiful to watch – alone or with your boo thang. One of my favourite shots in the film is the one following Peter and Ellie down the road when they both look back at the audience while walking, it’s almost as if they were checking to see if we’re still following their story. But my ultimate favourite would be the hitch hiking scene where Ellie uses some skin to stop a car. It gave viewers a glimpse into how woman presented themselves in a time bikinis when were taboo. The performances are entertaining and believable. Gable is at his peak, thoroughly charming and consistently amusing. Colbert has a difficult role to play, since she must be incompetent, headstrong and often annoying while still being likeable. She succeeds, and her performance stands up at every screening. One of the funniest and most engaging of all time, this film swept the Oscars and set the standard for romantic comedies and road pictures that would rarely if ever be matched. This film remains a mirror and a measuring stick - not only for all following romantic comedies, but also (perhaps more significantly) for all lovers who came after Peter and Ellie and dream of a similar union of bodies, brains and fates.
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