The best of The Spinoff this week

Bringing you the best weekly reading from your friendly local website.

Alex Casey: ‘Would you like me to also be a different skin colour and male?’ – Anika Moa claps back at tattoo criticism on Seven Sharp

“I’ll just cover up a little bit” Moa whispered, frantically pulling her sleeves over her hands and attempting to cover the exposed parts of her chest and neck. Barry continued, “I will not be watching this programme or any other programme until the tattoos are covered.”

By this stage, Moa had rotated completely around to face the back of the Seven Sharp studio, her tattoos (and face) completely out sight. Somewhere out there, Peter let out a huge sigh of relief. But his state of nirvana was not to last for long.

She swivels back to face the camera, “would you like me to also be a different skin colour and male while you’re at it?”

Leonie Hayden: Grateful horis and model minorities: why don’t we know we’re racist?

“Lately a lot of people have objected to the observation that cis-gendered, heterosexual, white, able-bodied men are over represented nearly everywhere that power exists, to the point where they now think they are the marginalised group (hint: they’re not).

I can’t help but wonder if it’s the newness of being named. In Western countries, being those things means you are born into a world that uses language that treats you as the default. You’re the only ones that don’t have to add extra words to the things that define you – Chinese-New Zealander, female director, trans mayor, Paralympian.

So when a minority culture has a name for you that you didn’t sign off on – cis, Pākehā – you immediately assume the worst.”

To the side, fives. A ten is here.

Sam Brooks: Ranking the Dancing with the Stars NZ contestants based on their promo videos

“Suzy Cato is winning this thing.

At the start of her clip she pushes through the crowd of dances, rimmed glasses firmly affixed to her face, does a little dance that I’m sure was improvised, and she doesn’t even need a name until the very end. She’s Suzy Cato. You know who she is.

Which is her main asset, honestly. The rest of the contestants you can imagine people not knowing, to an extent. Everyoneknows who Suzy Cato is. Even more crucially, everyone who knows who Suzy Cato is (which is literally everyone) loves Suzy Cato.”

The Spinoff: Duncan Garner launches blistering attack on Duncan Garner

“High profile broadcaster and columnist Duncan Garner has this morning spoken truth to power, or more specifically, truth to high profile broadcaster and columnist Duncan Garner.

In a blistering attack on Newshub’s simulcast AM Show, Duncan Garner railed against the poison of “the speech police”.

“The speech police are winning the war,” said Duncan Garner.

“Those who overreact at everything we say and everything we do in society … We need to be careful that we do not lose the precious gift that we have in this country – it’s called the freedom of speech. When you lose it, have a look at that, it is so, so important we keep it. We need a contest of ideas and thought and creativity, so do not bow down to those who want to ring-fence society with their take on our society.”

Duncan Garner’s comments were a clear denunciation of recent comments by Duncan Garner, who last week attempted to ring-fence the speech of Taika Waititi.”

Joel MacManus:  How a cult Dunedin film gave Taika Waititi his big break

Five first year students find an empty flat. It’s a shithole and cold as balls, but there are two selling points: free rent, and free power. Then they discover something amazing: a basement chock-full of weed. They flick the whole lot off to a local dealer, and suddenly they have more money than any of them know what to do with. But soon it all comes crashing down. The owner of the house comes back, and he wants to know what they’ve done with his stash.

“It was basically a ‘what if,’” Sarkies said. “You take a group of extremely naive characters and put them in an extremely stressful situation which would ultimately drive them to be prepared to commit murder.”

“It was my first film, so I just wanted something with an interesting enough story that even if I fucked it up, it had potential to succeed.”

Jihee Junn: Ten young entrepreneurs New Zealanders should know about

“We love to perpetuate the stereotype of the slacker millennial, spending hours on end scrolling through social media and whittling away a lifetime’s worth of savings on $22 brunches. But when we look at some of the most exciting businesses in New Zealand today, young people are are often the ones leading the pack. Because what young people lack in experience and expertise, they make up for with enthusiasm, freshness and a whole lot else.

Our previous list highlighted ten amazing women in business, but it’s a list that could’ve gone on and on. This time it’s no different with hundreds of young people promising good things across New Zealand. But ten is a nice round number, so we’ve taken the time to pick out a few young people in business who we think deserve your special attention.”

Don Rowe: I got Instagram hacked by the fake Ray-Ban ads, and I’m mad as hell

The ads, posted by individual user accounts up to four times in a row without warning, consist of a bad graphic offering Ray-Bans at 90% discounts in any currency from pound to euro to the New Zealand dollar. Various URLs are provided for keen shoppers, but the sites are uniform in their amateur design, error-ridden copy and total lack of affiliation with the actual Ray-Ban site hosted in the US.

“We are professional online company in the world,” they trumpet. “Our designer items are hand picked to match every uptown ladies’ latest desires all at discounted prices.”

“This is a perfect place for perfect products. It would be an honor for our professional team to provide satisfied services for you.”

Though the websites are identical right down to the typos, they are registered to various cities in Eastern China. Seems legit.

Emily Holdaway: The secret to coping without sleep when you have babies

I think we come into parenthood with unrealistic expectations of what the first year will look like – especially regarding sleep. Or lack of. During pregnancy everyone jokes about how tired you will be, but you never quite believe them. And then, once your baby is born, everyone changes focus to their sleep. Is your baby sleeping? Is your baby not sleeping? How much sleep does your baby sleep?

And you think – hold on a minute, you just spent months telling me I’m going to be tired, and now you’re expecting my child to be sleeping all night long? That makes no sense. But you’re too tired to think about it any further, so you shrug, and scull your lukewarm coffee.

All the jokes, and all the memes, and all the assumptions are about non-sleeping babies, and yeah some are funny at the time, but they miss 50% of the equation.

No one is focusing on you.

Adam Goodall: The beautiful promise of backwards compatibility – and the sad reality

“On Tuesday, Microsoft announced that they’d be bringing 19 games from the original Xbox to the Xbox One. This brings the total number of original Xbox games available on the Xbox One, backwards-compatible and in as close to their original form as possible, to 32.

Which is great! I grew up playing Xbox games; me and my sister sacrificed two years of our weekly allowance to get an Xbox launch bundle in 2002. And though old Wheezy (each Xbox had its own randomised name, which is the kind of innovation that I’m all in for) has long since died, the games I played on him meant a lot to me. I’m glad they’ll get a new life. Or some of them, at least.”


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