In what will be my last Fast Five for 2016, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on the past year. One filled with highs and lows and more changes than I can shake a stick at. I think calling this year bizarre is an understatement. Key is out and Trump is in and I watched more sad Guy Fieri clips than I would like to admit. Let 's look at some of the standout moments:
1. Stephen Joyce getting bonked on the nose by a dildo. This is honestly what came to my mind first when reflecting on some high points of the year:
2. It's not all fun and games and dildo throwing tho. 2016 was a year of protest. From the protests in Baton Rouge following the shooting of the unarmed Philando Castile, to the Dakota Access Pipeline resistance and land occupation, to the anti-Trump marches, to whanau and resident-led fight to stop residential development at Ihumatao - a site of immense historic and spiritual significance, to the week of action by the Auckland Peace Action Group in response to the arms-expo. It's been a year of unparalleled viral activism with over one million people 'checking in' to Standing Rock in support of the #NoDapl to the digital Ihumatao campaign where people can virtually occupy the land.
Just a few days ago, Puawai Cairns wrote a blog about how and why museums should be collecting material related to protest and resistance and why it is so important. Power to the people.
3. It was a year packed to the hilt with conferences, talks, and symposiums. At the few I attended, I felt a particular sense of urgency among the delegates and speakers. People wanting to affect change, to do real good for our communities, to move beyond rhetoric to action. The question I suppose, is how? For inspiration see:
4. We've all been talking about this, but the release of Vincent O'Malley's The Great War for New Zealand is worth mentioning as a highlight as it feels like a significant moment in our country's history, hopefully one that heralds a more honest engagement with our history. As O'Malley has said:
For many Pākehā, this is a sort of troubled history that they’d prefer to forget. Or ignore. But my argument is that acknowledging this history doesn’t require feelings of guilt. It just requires a willingness to recognise the history and its importance. I don’t think that’s a difficult thing for us to be doing as a nation. Iwi have carried these stories for long enough on their own. I think it’s time that others acknowledge the significance of this history.
5. And finally, Roy Claire has left the building:
So, as Michael Bublé emerges from his cave, I bid farewell to 2016. What a time you have been. You were weird and sometimes really good and sometimes really bad. But one things for sure, you were a year and you happened and in a few weeks time you will be over.