Everything I have written for the past month is super aggressive. It’s not because I’m angry, quite the opposite, actually. It has been the real life equivalent of the bass drop and now I gotta move. All that motivation comes out as a fast paced, fast moving punch in the face, and I’m the Ali and you’re the Frazier, it’s 1975 and we’re in Manila.

So instead of aggressive essays that haven’t been fully putting my point across, now you get a Listicle of main theories, or parts of my life that have inspired me to write.

Everything I Was Going To Write About But Haven’t Yet ‘Cos.

  • Thank God You’re Here!

Telemachus knew it. And we read about it. Welcome others, then see what they’re up to.
As far as I can Google, my 12th century Scottish ancestors knew it too. Although the best I could find to satisfy you evidence-based believers was in as far as the home security of my ancestors; welcome others, and protect them, using a circle of shelter around your home as far as you could throw your weapon. To shorten, be welcoming.

My Maori ancestors, from 12th Century to current, knew it too. Bring the people, bring all that they, and those who have nurtured them spiritually and physically, are. Welcome the tangible and the intangible, through a ritual process we know as powhiri. Give them a cup of tea, at least, as part of its conclusion.

I ask you, how do you welcome others?

  • The Course of One’s Life

When you actually break it down, what are the skills you’re bringing to the table? Sometimes you need to peel the layers right back so that you can understand exactly what you are trying to encapsulate.

A close friend sent me a screen shot of something I posted on Facebook, and asked me about 4 words. 4 words turned into 15 crafted bullet points showing what I bring to the table. It was one part of my toolkit I have to invest in an employer. Often they’re not even skills employers think they need to be aware of in New Zealand. It was illuminating to have it laid out in front of me.

  • Pearly Gates

Have you taken time to think about what will be said about you when you pass on? A lot of the time we talk about someone as how they served, how much value was placed on them because of labour or service.

I let this one rest after the Christchurch tragedy. This also meant I had extra time to make connections between New Zealand’s history of xenophobia and small business owners and language as a symbol of intelligence.

I also made decisions around what I want to be said about me. I won’t be there to hear it, so I can’t be a Cheertator about it, but all I can say if I get reduced to a life lived through a professional lens, I will not be happy. There will be some haunting involved.

  • The Feminist Line-Up

How richly rewarding it can be to go to a line dancing social in a primary school hall on a Saturday afternoon. The joy in the room becomes almost tangible. Married couples are there, and you can tell that they still enjoy each other’s company. It is more remarkable when you speak with another and realise that this is partner-less dancing. It is a chance for those who are partner-less, through death, the golf course or otherwise, to stand on their own two feet, have fun, have something that’s their own, have something that can challenge them and that they can master.

Plus there are cream cakes, and mini savouries. I love a mini savoury.

  • That Time I Picked Grapes For A Living

Long story short, it’s 7.30am in April 2019 and I’m in a vineyard with a pair of snips, picking for pinot noir. It is zero degrees. There is snow on the mountains behind me. Bob Marley is playing on a blue tooth speaker, and I can just make out snippets of the conversations in French around me. For the past two days, all I have had to say is “Thank-you.” My knees hurt and my lower back is dead. I couldn’t be happier.

A week later, I ‘m thinking about minimum wage. I have lots of thoughts about it. Aggressive thoughts. What does normal life look like on minimum wage?

  • “The Pearl That Broke Its Shell”

The first book I saw in the library. Written by Nadia Hashimi. I’m pearling. How did these characters break their shell?

The story sticks with you when you’ve finished.

And there you have it. This is my blog version of a biscuit sampler. I hope you found more cameo creams than pink wafers.

It would have been too shellfish of me to keep these ideas to myself.

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