Waiheke Hayden Lana

Waiheke Island

 

NZ’s third most populated island

Wow! First time to Waiheke Island I wasn’t disappointed in the slightest. Despite David Farrier’s controversial opinions on Waiheke Island, I was excited to go. Having lived in Auckland for eight months, I’d heard countless times, “You haven’t been to Waiheke yet? Oh shit bro, you gotta go. Like you just gotta go.”

 

As fate would have it, an invitation to spend some time there was extended to me. For New Year’s Eve no less. My little sister Lana was visiting for the Christmas break and I hadn’t spent decent time with her for a number of months. She came to the Chronesthesia premiere (attended all three scheduled screenings – but not the fourth screening added because it was so popular), and I hadn’t seen her since. What a perfect opportunity for some brother sister hang time, mixed with a new experience in a new place with interesting people I had yet to meet.

 

Turns out the people staying there were amazing, the place is amazing, and spending time with me sister is still amazing. Here’s a vlog about it – it’s basically great people smiling for seven minutes. Worth a watch all the same.

 

 

More Travel

Waiheke Hayden Lana

Waiheke Island

  NZ’s third most populated island Wow! First time to Waiheke Island I wasn’t disappointed in the slightest. Despite David Farrier’s controversial opinions on Waiheke Island, I was excited to go. Having lived in Auckland for eight months, I’d heard countless times, “You haven’t been to Waiheke yet? Oh shit bro, you gotta go. Like you just gotta […]

Read More
Tenerife writing Abby Damen pretty girl at the beach in sunset lighting

Our Time in Tenerife (VIDEOS)

Relaxing and Hot: Tenerife     This place is gorgeous. We got here almost five weeks ago and I could happily live here forever. A bottle of beer is 50c from a place down the road. Coffee is about one euro in most cafes. Add in the friendly people everywhere, a multitude of gorgeous beaches lining the […]

Read More
Berlin writing in front of cathedral

Berlin - 27 photos

bikes, music, film, art, relaxing, food, politics   That’s what Berlin has. Truthfully, that’s what most cities around the world have, but Berlin seems to be dominated by these things especially, and it seems to be populated solely by people who care about them more than they do other things.   I am going to litter […]

Read More
Dresden

Dresden in a Flash

Dresden, Germany     Here some quick facts about Dresden for educational salve: It was heavily bombed during World War II. Over 90% of the damn place was scorched It’s got water flowing through the middle of the city, separating the Old Town and New Town It’s considered the cultural, political, educational and economical centre of […]

Read More
Abby Damen Sustainable Diet

The Journey to a Sustainable Diet

Abby Damen is THE FOUNDER OF SAVING2050 and is our first guest post author

 

I was diagnosed with endometriosis this year, a disease of the uterus caused by hormone imbalance that affects at least 120,000 girls and women in New Zealand (and about 176 million world-wide).  Exact causes for this disease are still unknown but genetics, immunological and environmental factors appear to be common catalysts.

My gynecologist had a one hour long yarn with me during my fifteen minute follow-up appointment about the causes of endo and what could have contributed to my hormone imbalance:

-the toxins in the air caused by dairy farming

-the pesticides our food is sprayed with contains high levels of estrogen

-the antibiotics and/or hormone growth supplements that particular meat-destined animals may or may not be given

 

Cool, I didn’t know that.  Naturally, I freaked out and for the previous six months I’ve been navigating the Sunday markets and grocery stores with heightened suspicion:

These vegetables are full of endocrine disrupting pesticides / She obviously doesn’t care about her health if she’s purchasing that brand of chicken / OMG – quinoa is sourced unethically, it wont be fair trade if it’s just in Alison’s Pantry and why isn’t anyone else in this queue carrying a reusable bag?!

 

supermarket confusion

Supermarket Confusion

I was so excited with the idea that if I stopped eating hormone-induced chicken my symptoms would disappear that I didn’t even research this properly:  Apparently, New Zealand doesn’t inject chickens with hormones – or at least they do, but according to Food Smart NZ, they are of the “approved” kind that “don’t impact human health”.

However, we do spray our crops with pesticides and while it’s difficult to source information on the types of pesticides used on animal feed, I think we can be slightly skeptical or at the very least curious about whether or not the consumption of particular animal bi-products have endocrine disrupting effects due to what kind of pesticides the animal itself has consumed.

Organic NZ says the most commonly drifted pesticide, 2, 4-D is an endocrine distruptor and that “…there is anecdotal evidence that 2,4-D is involved in disturbances of the menstrual cycle of adult women and in precipitating early onset of menses in children in New Zealand”.

However, New Zealand government websites boast New Zealand poultry as entirely hormone free and assure us that regular testing occurs to ensure it remains as such.  Then again, I’ve also come across articles like this one which admits that approximately 1100 farmers in New Zealand use growth hormone supplements.

WAIT WHAT?  HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO KNOW WHAT TO BUY IF I CARE ABOUT MY HEALTH AND WANT TO SAVE THE ANIMALS?!

Abby and Animals

Me (+ dad) with lots of animals – aren’t they fascinating and wonderful?!

 

It is so hard to find out what’s “right” and what’s “good”. Having a sustainable diet drives me mental to be honest – trying balance the scales between eating ethically, healthily and sustainably, all while trying to fulfill my dreams of getting bulked up, and still being able to enjoy the taste of food – and at the end of the day, I still don’t know the answer.

Despite this confusion, I have a hunch that if I lived in a tiny little room (imagine that 1 x 1 square box you used to build around the Sim you wanted to kill off), I would get pretty stressed out.  There are still chickens in New Zealand confined to a space smaller than the size of an A4 sheet of paper, and whether or not the stress/hormone link is true for poultry, the possibility of consuming what was once an organism that had a stressful and shortened life shouldn’t be an option.

 

caged poultry in nz

Caged Poultry in NZ (SAFE website)

 

It’s as simple as that.

Considering New Zealand’s land mass and its population relative to its size, it’s significantly easier for us than any other country to be game changers in this industry.  Animal product consumption is estimated to increase at an unsustainable rate.  Environmentally speaking – we need to make a change.

If the environment catastrophe doesn’t resonate with you, and pictures of chickens don’t encourage you to want to consume consciously, how about the fact that 260,000 kiwi kids live without the basics.  Our society is trapped in a food system that subsidises processed food making it cheaper than natural food sources.  It frustrates me no end to think that it’s cheaper to buy coca-cola than it is to buy coconut water.

Excuse my French, but this is fucked. Unfortunately, chicken is currently consumed at an annual rate of over 35kg per person and until that demand drops, we are unlikely to see a change in the lives of poorly treated New Zealand farm animals, the detrimental rate at which we currently consume meat and even the health of people living in relative poverty.

 

corn

One kg of meat = the meals of 400 people. If only 10% of the world’s population become vegetarians, the threat of higher world temperatures would be vastly diminished.

 

Imagine if the food that got fed to the 35kg of chicken you consume over a year went to people in need.  The likelihood of your phone getting stolen may even decrease.

My dream is to walk into the meat section of the supermarket and have nothing but free range chicken and grass-fed beef available.  Woolworths has announced that the Canberra region will be the first territory to sell only cage-free eggs and I think we could do that across Aotearoa.

Let’s do more than sign a petition. If you have a similar dream, share your animal-friendly recipe with Vegetus and be the change that our generation will be remembered for.

 

The philosophy is simple: The more animal-friendly treats we get to create and enjoy, the more likely it is that we’ll be in a position to be able to afford high-quality meat, egg and dairy product in lesser quantities (because lets face it – that stuff is expensive), resulting in the low quality product disappearing from our shelves and the high quality becoming cheaper and the norm.

Ignorance is bliss – until you start bleeding out of your uterus.  So, who’s with me on a vegetarian style hangi?

 

 

References:

*A really great book is “Melting Point” by Eric Dorfman which puts Global Warming and Climate Change into perspective with the relevance of New Zealand as the central topic.  It is also in laymans terms which is a breath of fresh air for an impatient generation-Y’er like me.

**If you haven’t already, watch “Food Matters.”  It’s a slightly cynical but nonetheless interesting documentary that advocates food over drugs. “Earthlings” is also a documentary that “appeals to the emotions” as it looks at the utilization of animals in terms of science, pets, entertainment, food and clothing.

Safe Food Campaign NZ: http://www.safefood.org.nz/pesticide.php

Te Ara Government NZ: http://www.teara.govt.nz/en/poultry-industry/page-5

Kids Can NZ: http://www.kidscan.org.nz/our-work/nz-child-poverty

Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sara-gottfried-md/cortisol_b_2822176.html

Physcians Committee Org: http://www.pcrm.org/health/health-topics/endometriosis

Endometriosis New Zealand: http://www.nzendo.org.nz/

FMCG Business:  http://www.fmcgbusiness.co.nz/2014/09/15/australian-supermarkets-support-cage-free-eggs/

Action Wanted: http://actionwanted.wordpress.com/2013/07/17/myths-about-non-vegetarian-diet/

 

Related Posts

Chronesthesia Love and Time Travel Shanghai International Film Festival

Shanghai International Film Festival - Chrono selected!

My dream is to walk into the meat section of the supermarket and have nothing but free-range chicken and grass-fed beef available. Australia has just done that with one supermarket and I really think we can do it across the entire country here in Aotearoa.

Read More
Chronesthesia Love and Time Travel

Securing an International Sales Agent

My dream is to walk into the meat section of the supermarket and have nothing but free-range chicken and grass-fed beef available. Australia has just done that with one supermarket and I really think we can do it across the entire country here in Aotearoa.

Read More
Waiheke Hayden Lana

Waiheke Island

My dream is to walk into the meat section of the supermarket and have nothing but free-range chicken and grass-fed beef available. Australia has just done that with one supermarket and I really think we can do it across the entire country here in Aotearoa.

Read More
Hayden Weal and Simeon Duncombe

Releasing in Cinemas

My dream is to walk into the meat section of the supermarket and have nothing but free-range chicken and grass-fed beef available. Australia has just done that with one supermarket and I really think we can do it across the entire country here in Aotearoa.

Read More
Steve Barr, Hayden J. Weal, Simeon Duncombe, Kelly Kilgour, Conor Cameron

Chronesthesia Premiere!

My dream is to walk into the meat section of the supermarket and have nothing but free-range chicken and grass-fed beef available. Australia has just done that with one supermarket and I really think we can do it across the entire country here in Aotearoa.

Read More
Sing Street, Beautiful Ruins, My Dad Wrote a Porno

Winter 2016 Media Picks

My dream is to walk into the meat section of the supermarket and have nothing but free-range chicken and grass-fed beef available. Australia has just done that with one supermarket and I really think we can do it across the entire country here in Aotearoa.

Read More
Hayden J. Weal tampons should be free

Tampons should be free

The price of having a bloody fanny

“You okay?” I asked.

My workmate’s frown had been fixed for much longer than usual. Brow knotted, she clipped back, “Fine.”

A few minutes later, the lack of her standard perkiness had me worried. I waited until we had a degree of privacy. “Honestly, what’s up?”

She looked back at me, face blank. “What? Nothing. I’m just…”

“Work related or…?” I wanted to say ‘lady days’ but growing up in a household filled predominately with women meant that I possess a shrapnel of tact. Instead, I shook my hand at my abdomen and said, “Fanny stuff?”

See? Tact.

Awkward Turtle

The eloquence of man is but virgin land to me

 

I’m fortunate to work with very awesome people. She laughed and nodded. “Yeah, just kinda shitty and I don’t know why. It’ll pass.”

“Right on,” I said, and we left it there. I reflected on my history working with this particular staff member. After two years, I could count the number of times she’d been in this mood on one hand. I inquired – using my masterful way with words – “How often do you period it up?”

She told me that by being on the pill, she was able to control it so she only ‘surfs the crimson wave’ once every three months.

“That safe?” I asked.

“My doctor recommends it. Plus, tampons are expensive.”

 

happy tampon

Smug white gold

I didn’t know that. Why would tampons be expensive? Wait a minute, how could tampons be expensive? They’re a necessary commodity for a massive percentage of the world’s population due to circumstances outside personal control.

What about pads? Surely pads are cheaper.

Nope.

The pill?

No way. More expensive.

Frankly, this is backwards. Technologically, we can store tens of thousands of songs, videos, pictures and documents on a mobile phone and video chat synchronously with someone on the far side of the world. Scientifically, we’ve drafted the human genome and have split the atom. Politically, the world is stable. The summarise: we’re in good shape.

This is my contention: if menstruating is outside of a person’s control, the cost of managing the effects and symptoms of said menstruation should be covered by the state.

 

Cheering girls for free tampons

 

This idea has been touched on and talked about many times before, but being a man, I’m in a position to give an objective view of the issue. Let me spin a yarn:

I have Ankylosing Spondylitis. It’s an arthritic genetic predisposition that means my spine is trying to fuse itself together, causing crippling pain unless managed. The way I manage my condition is through exercise and the indulgent use of prescription anti-inflammatory medication. When I was diagnosed, I saw a number of specialists, had x-rays, blood tests, a proposed MRI scan, countless referrals from doctor to doctor, ophthalmologist (eye doc) to rheumatologist (bone doc), and the cost of all of it was covered by the state.

Thank you NZ tax payers!

This is because my affliction is not my fault. I didn’t fuse my spine together deliberately, it’s due to the odds of the universe and genetics.

If we use that very simple edict, shouldn’t all menstruation costs be free? Women don’t decide they’d like to add the XX chromosome while they’re a malformed zygote, right? Females don’t choose to bleed their uterus’ lining through their vagina often causing severe pain and limiting productivity, do they?

It’s not like shaving your face. If I like, I can let my beard grow. That’s my choice. Sure, ladies could let The Red Baron through the floodgates and flow freely if they like, but that would quite possibly ruin their jeans, ostracize them from any water cooler conversation and spoil their chances of a second date with that cute guy who finally asked them out.

 

Carrie bloody

This photo may appear to be in bad taste but the story of Carrie and her period humiliation is a classic example of menstrual fear and humiliation induced by a misogynistic society.

 

In short, it’s not really a viable option. In order to prevent such a grisly scene, ladies must use tampons or pads or the pill… or a mooncup (which we’ll get to later – get excited for that).

Allow me to present some ballpark (very ballpark) figures based on a walk through three of my local supermarkets and txting friends.

 

TAMPONS

1 menstruation cycle = 20 tampons (give or take depending on your flow – heavy flow means more moolah)

1 pack of 20 tampons = approx $6.00 (again, depends on a myriad of variables)

1 year of tampons = $72

 

PADS

1 menstruation cycle = 14 pads

1 pack of 14 pads = $6.49

1 year of pads = $78

 

THE PILL

Between $15 and $50 a month (This one is really tricky as variations of hormones affect each person differently. We’re all a unique snowflake, yay!)

1 year of the pill: $180 – $600

Some ladies have little choice here. They might have extremely painful and debilitating periods causing them to stay home from work or school and the only alternative is popping pills of hormones at a designated time every day.

 

BEING A MAN

Free.

(In the case of vaginal bleeding, anyhow)

 

 

“But what can we do?” I hear you cry. We’re just a small country at the bottom of the earth who make world acclaimed films and music. We can’t affect world politics.

The sultry miss to your right might have something to say about that.

I’m going to lay down two suggestions, each is a progressive step toward a stronger, more just society.

 

Kate Sheppard suffrage

Kate Sheppard appears on our $10 note and is our most famous suffragette

1. Make all tampons and pads free.

This would cause a sweet wave. Imagine if we were the first country in the world to do this?! We’d be hailed!

Imagine the headlines:

New Zealand first to do something that America could’ve and should’ve prioritized over Obama Care.

Countries would follow our example and in ten years we’ll all look back and marvel at how backward we were, making people pay to manage a physical impediment out of their hands.

The cost is minimal. Our tax can cover it. If anyone cites cost as an issue, remind them that it’s a healthcare cost. If our country can shell out for my spine (which I’m very thankful for), I’m sure it’s shelling out for a lot of other people’s cases, so it can shell out for this too. It’s in the name of creating more productive citizens.

It’s not enough to make feminine hygiene products tax free (it’s ludicrous they’re taxed as it is), they should be 100% free for all women, no matter the flow, vagina size or number needed.

 

2. Use a mooncup.

Mooncup

The many faces of Mooncup, the modern day minge-friend – I had to work hard to refrain from photoshopping happy faces on them.

 

You insert these soft, amenable funnels into your vagina to catch the blood. From what I hear it takes some practice but once you get the hang of it, much like riding a bike, it becomes a second nature and they’re more comfortable and induce more confidence than tampons or pads.

These little beauties are next level awesome. Allow me to list the ways in which they rock the party:

– They hold three times the blood of a tampon which means much less trips to the toilet.

– They’re silicon-free, hypoallergenic and contain no dyes, plastics, toxins or bleaches (It’s like clean eating for your vagina!).

– They’re tremendously economical. One mooncup will last years and years and years.

And best of all…

– Price. Around $50 will purchase a wicked wee mooncup for your soon-to-be comfortably clean yoni. That works out as cheaper than one year of tampons or pads and you can keep one mooncup for decades.

– Bonus point: They have measurement markings on it so you can keep track of your bleedings (I tried for a long time to come up with a better term but ‘bleedings’ is by far the best). This is helpful for medical reasons, I guess, or if you felt like keeping a chart for fun like we do for Erection Size Graphs.

happy girl tampon free beach

Financially and menstruationally free!

I’m personally in favour of both. Use a mooncup, tell your friends to use a mooncup and save the environment one tampon at a time, but while doing so, let’s storm the Beehive Parliament Building and demand free feminine hygiene products.

All together now, FOR A BETTER AOTEAROA!

Check out Mooncups here.

Tony Ryall of the National party is New Zealand’s current Minister of Health. If you’d like to join the plight, address a letter to him (you don’t even need a stamp):

 

Mr. Tony Ryall MP

Freepost Parliament

Private Bag 18 888, Parliament Buildings

Wellington 6160

 

Or email him on t.ryall@ministers.govt.nz

 

Related Posts

Chronesthesia Love and Time Travel Shanghai International Film Festival

Shanghai International Film Festival - Chrono selected!

Chronesthesia got into Shanghai!   We first got the email in February, 2017. I was in the South Island on a voluntary tour of primary schools for a charity organisation called Duffy Books in Homes. “Congratulations!” it started. “Chronesthesia has been selected for the 20th Annual Shanghai International Film Festival.” In the body of the […]

Read More
Chronesthesia Love and Time Travel

Securing an International Sales Agent

We got an international sales agent!     How ridiculous is that? Chronesthesia is now being represented internationally by WPE, operating out of the United States of America, selling around the world. As many territories as possible, as much money as possible, getting seen as far and wide as possible.   Hold up – what’s […]

Read More
Waiheke Hayden Lana

Waiheke Island

  NZ’s third most populated island Wow! First time to Waiheke Island I wasn’t disappointed in the slightest. Despite David Farrier’s controversial opinions on Waiheke Island, I was excited to go. Having lived in Auckland for eight months, I’d heard countless times, “You haven’t been to Waiheke yet? Oh shit bro, you gotta go. Like you just gotta […]

Read More
Hayden Weal and Simeon Duncombe

Releasing in Cinemas

To play in cinemas   Completing a feature film under the age of thirty. That made me feel pretty damn good. Sometimes I wake up and remember it, in the same way that you often wake up and remember it’s a Saturday, and I feel fuzzy. And warm. And inspired to do more.   But […]

Read More
Steve Barr, Hayden J. Weal, Simeon Duncombe, Kelly Kilgour, Conor Cameron

Chronesthesia Premiere!

PREMIERE!   It’s been a long road and a lot of work. Chronesthesia played to a sold out cinema audience as part of the New Zealand International Film Festival on Friday 29th July 2016. The positive response and reviews we’ve been receiving have made every single minute of hard work on the film worth it. […]

Read More
Sing Street, Beautiful Ruins, My Dad Wrote a Porno

Winter 2016 Media Picks

  Winter can be a bastard   Rain getting all over your shoes and making your socks wet? Oh fuck that noise. Waking up and feeling the chill of the air as you walk to the bathroom. A nice hot shower is a temporary reprieve sure, then what happens when you turn the stream off […]

Read More