The People Who Shape Us

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I believe that there are people you meet in life who shape your experience in some way. It might be a brief one-time encounter, a long friendship, a neighbour or a family member. Maybe it’s someone you never spoke to at all, just saw. There are moments in life that stick in your head and resurface further down the track. Conversations. Experiences. While it’s true that every person we ever meet effects our life in some way, simply by having met them, there are some that leave a lasting impression, or mark. For me, there have been a few. But mostly it was my nan and grandad (pictured).

 

Hec and Clare
My nan and grandad were everything that is good. They were loving, hilarious, insanely generous, and intelligent. They were hard working, and nothing was ever too big of a problem to solve. They were positive, and they were kind.

I often think that if everyone could have seen the world through my nan and grandad’s eyes, it would be a better place. To them, everyone was equal. Everyone deserved respect and everyone had something to offer. Selflessness wasn’t an option to them, it was a necessity. They had an optimistic outlook on life that was infectious – I think everyone that ever met them walked away smiling.

My nan and grandad shaped my life more than anything has. I learnt so much about life and about being a good person from them. They showed me what is important – treating everyone fairly and with kindness; knowing that anything actually is possible if you just try; spending your money on experiences and adventures rather than letting it sit in a bank; and most of all, treasuring the people you love. A meal or moonlit walk shared with one or two of those dearest to you is more important than a party or event or with dozens of people.

They believed that I was good so unfaltering that I began to believe it too; I believed that being good and honest and genuine was so much more important than being wealthy or beautiful or popular. They showed me the kind of life I want to live: a life where I can help others, make a difference in some small way, follow my passions and love. They showed me that it’s okay to talk to animals like they’re friends, and that anyone who thinks you’re uncool for hanging with your grandparents every other week isn’t worth your time. They showed me that you don’t stop believing in what you care about just because it might seem hopeless, and you don’t stop trying to achieve your goals just because it gets hard.

They also taught me to live authentically. I learnt from them that living life in the real world meant not becoming absorbed in technology. Exploring with a phone isn’t really exploring; holidaying with your ipad isn’t really holidaying. When you have down-time, it’s better spent reading a book or doing a hobby than scrolling through Facebook (I don’t think they actually knew what Facebook was). You don’t need to look glamourous all the time; gumboots and jeans are just as good.

Getting to spend the first 21 years of my life with nan and grandad is something I will forever be grateful of. They were the best people I’ve ever known, and I hope that maybe someday I can rub some of their influence off on someone else.

Wild Kids

Decided to post one of my songs…scary! I wrote this a few years back about two historical figures that fascinate me: Bonnie and Clyde. My lyrics include a couple of lines from the poem that the real Bonnie wrote about her and Clyde. Enjoy!

Song and lyrics Copyright of Nikki Addison 2016 ©

2016’s Best TV Shows

With easy access to streaming platforms like Lightbox, TV has begun to consume a bigger part of our lives than ever before. Netflix and chill, amirite? This year we’ve been treated to a fantastical array of shows, each seemingly more exciting and dramatic than their predecessors. No, I haven’t seen every show to come out of 2016 (goodbye, life). I have seen a few, however, so here’s a list of this year’s greatest offerings (or at least the greatest out of those I’ve actually seen).

Published in Issue 24, Craccum Magazine 2016.

Narcos S2

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Oh Narcos, where have you been all my life? Season 1 was a wonderfully wild ride through the cocaine underworld of Colombia and into the life of infamous drug lord Pablo Escobar. It ended VERY tensely, leaving viewers bewildered, stressed and irritable (just me?). The announcement of a second season was a very big relief to said anxious fans. Lucky for them, Season 2 is an honourable followup. Much like the first season, this one feels almost as though you are watching a documentary about the real Escobar and the American DEA agents who hunted him. Picking up right where the show left off, we watch as Escobar’s violence escalates and agents Steve and Javier close in. Again, Wagner Moura is polarising as Escobar, changing from the caring, generous hero of Medellin’s poor to a chilling, remorseless murderer and back again in a flash. The action and suspense is 10/10, and you’ll be hooked right up to the final episode. This is a tight unit that won’t disappoint. 

 

Stranger Things

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The motherload. The show with it all. The greatest. Goddangit I love Stranger Things. Predominately because of those serious Twin Peaks vibes I sporadically got while watching, but for several other (very valid) reasons as well. One: the setting. Who doesn’t love the Eighties? That fashion, that music, those hairstyles and those sweet American cars. Need I say more? Even if you weren’t alive in the Eighties, you’ll be getting nostalgia hits just one episode deep. Two: the casting. Those kids, seriously. It wouldn’t be the same without them. They’re amazing actors, 100% convincing and give the show a fresh perspective and wider appeal. David Harbour is great as the local chief, and the rest of the cast are solid too. Three: the music. I literally can’t think of better theme music since Twin Peaks. So simple, yet so creepily supernatural and intriguing. The sound effects also deserve a nod. Thanks for all the fear! In sum: as near-perfect as a TV show can get. Even sci-fi and supernatural haters will love it. 

 

11.22.63

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J.J. Abrams and Stephen King – you can’t go wrong. If you read and loved the novel, you won’t be disappointed with the series. It’s tense, exciting and has that subtle sense of humour that King instills in all his non-horror works. James Franco is surprisingly good as divorced high school teacher Jake Epping, who is sent back to 1963 to prevent the assassination of JFK. The supporting cast are also great, most notably George MacKay as Bill Turcotte. The best part of this show is, like the novel, its suspenseful atmosphere. Running throughout is the “the past doesn’t want to be changed” theme, which adds some scary moments and keeps you wondering how the hell the damn thing is going to pan out. Second to that is the soundtrack and setting. So on point. Being young sheltered Nineties kids, we can’t imagine what life was like during the pivotal Sixties, but the foot-tapping, hand-clapping music and pristine streets of 11.22.63 sure make it look grand.