metropol » Archives for Melinda Collins

Author: Melinda Collins

Editor’s Perspective: May 23 2019


 

 

It seems that I’m at that age now where, as cool as I think my new clothes are, my daughter doesn’t. In fact, she may even have referred to one of my favourite stores as ‘dowdy’. Ouch, the cutting words of a teenager!

But actually I’m OK with it. Georgia and I have very distinct tastes – distinctly different that is. But fact is, it’s never been my role to micromanage what she wears, nor to tell her what sports she should play or what friends she should hang out with. I’ve always viewed my role as helping her become the young lady she should be, in a safe and supported environment.

The world is full of different people – that’s the beauty of it and slowly, but surely, our young people are starting to recognise this. As social media comes under increasing scrutiny for contributing to poor mental health and body image, there are a growing number of young women who are using online platforms to empower and educate.

Locally, Kiwi influencers too are embracing the trend towards body positivity and empowerment. Whether it’s Auckland DJ and filmmaker Shaki Wasasala, aka Half Queen, showing off her body hair, writer and fat activist Ally Garrett proudly posing in a plus-size bikini, Sophia Malthus sharing the realities of life in a wheelchair, or wrestler and trans activist Leilani Tomoniko working to normalise transgenderism, it’s time for us all to get on the #bodypositivity bandwagon.

After all, in the words of Maya Angelou, “It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength”.


 

All Gunn’s Blazing


When there are cameras rolling, it’s a common theme for there to be a starring role and a supporting role and, while this is undoubtedly true of the Gunn family, there’s somewhat of an anomaly in the success story of local production company Whitebait Media.

 

 

Because although iconic television – and now radio – personality Jason Gunn is the gregarious natural born performer and the star of the show, to describe wife Janine Morrell-Gunn, the woman who has been by his side for the past 24 years, as being in a supporting role simply wouldn’t capture the role of the beautiful go-getter making things happen behind the scenes.

Your typical A type personality, she is ambitious, driven, organised and proactive, but importantly, she is the driving force behind a production company that celebrates 21 years in business this year, heading New Zealand’s longest-running children’s programme, What Now? and dominating children’s TV with shows like The Erin Simpson Show and The Adam And Eve Show.

Janine has been a leader and a trailblazer since her student days at the University of Canterbury where she headed the Students’ Association, and remains as passionate as the young gun was in 1981 when she was arrested for obstructing a carriageway in a political move during the 1981 Springbok tour.

Those visions of changing the world persisted when she launched into an internship at TVNZ, covering current affairs and, although she didn’t become the next Judy Bailey, it did lead her to children’s television, after she directed children’s current affairs shows Spot On and Viewfinder.

Janine eventually worked her way through the ranks, becoming Executive Producer of TVNZ’s Children’s Unit. It was in this role that she met her future husband, Jason Gunn. The gregarious presenter was Janine’s employee and together they worked on kids’ show, After 2. It was Janine’s idea to create The Son of a Gunn Show, featuring Gunn’s beloved sidekick Thingee and the rest, as they say, is history.

It’s been said that when one door closes, another one opens and when TVNZ’s Children’s Unit was relocated from Christchurch to Wellington in 1998, the couple decided to “put a stake in the ground” and set up their own company, then known as Whitebait Productions. Whitebait’s first commission was Bumble, a preschool series about a bee and his friends and, of course, it was Jason that would be the first actor to don the Bumble suit.

“Jase and I needed to sail our own waka. We’d been so well supported at TVNZ, which we appreciated, but we wanted to be here with our families. All TV roads led to Auckland, but we’re unashamedly passionate about Canterbury.” She recalls early in her career making the flight to Auckland to be at a meeting, not wanting to let being based in Christchurch an issue, a meeting which was postponed not once, not twice but three days in a row, with Janine flying into the city for each!

“Twenty years ago it was harder to be here when most business wasn’t. Now we fly people down here and share our Canterbury experience and hospitality. Aucklanders enjoy the vibe, so that’s really positive. We’ve been able to raise our family and the greater Whitebait whanau, run our business and have a lifestyle that wouldn’t have been the same in Auckland.”

In 2003, TVNZ shut down its Wellington-based Children’s Unit and the next year Whitebait Productions won the tender to relaunch What Now? and bring production of the show back to Christchurch. The show continues to play an integral part in the Whitebait story, but today represents just a small part of what the production company does.

With the largest and most well-equipped studio facilities in the South Island, the team is still making live and pre-recorded children’s, youth and family television, with Fanimals – “our new baby” – one of the biggest hits. Now in its second season, Whitebait has partnered with the Department of Conservation, Auckland Zoo and the RSPCA to deliver the series where kids and animals are the stars of the show.

She can’t help but flick through the photos of a little blue penguin that was on set recently. “New Zealand is second now only to the US in terms of pet ownership,” Janine says. “There are endless numbers of stories in that space, reflecting the diverse nature of our love for animals.”

The company has now also moved into the world of animation, partnering with a company in India to produce Darwin and Newts, which has been green-lit for a second season, with production beginning and ending right here in Christchurch. Highlights include being picked up by CCTV in China and translated into our own Te Reo Maori.

“Our kaupapa is to give Kiwi children a voice; we’re not just advocating for our young people, but we’re also celebrating them as well by enabling Kiwi kids to see themselves on television. We get wonderful offshore content here, but it’s still important for our kids to see themselves on screen – we’re a small sliver of New Zealand.”

The Sunday staple of New Zealand television What Now? has recently left the studio and gone nationwide – on the back of a $400,000 investment. “We’ve built an ob truck and taken it on the road – 40 towns in 40 weeks,” Janine explains. “It’s like a travelling circus; we get 250-450 beautiful kids turning up to be on the show every week!”

What Now? can cater to what’s happening in the country at the time. After the mosque attacks, they did a ‘share the love’ themed show. “It reflects the changing nature of diversity. Our population base has changed. With a show like What Now? we’re able to show real life New Zealand culture and demonstrate inclusiveness.”

 

 

That inclusiveness extends to everyone around her, and family and community are clearly where Janine’s heart is, whether that is the Whitebait community, the business community, our cultural communities and the local charitable community, in which she is heavily involved.

There are around 40 young people working at the production facilities in Princess Street, Middleton, with another 70-odd contractors involved in the shows. “We always strive to create an environment our team wants to be in,” Janine says. “My husband is a spontaneous, ‘smell the roses’ kinda guy. As a producer, being with him, I have learnt to ‘get’ performers and from behind the scenes understand how to support those out the front. He brings humour to our lives; it’s infectious and our people learn how to have a laugh and keep it light.”

The global industry is peppered with former Whitebaiters who have thrived under her tutelage. The team has regular bake-offs, birthday celebrations and theatre screenings, and just hosted the first shared lunch within their business park to bring the work community together – they plant trees and give an annual scholarship in honour of a team member who died in the quakes and this year everyone helped make a wreath and did an ode to remembrance for ANZAC Day. A new passion project is making Whitebait paper cup free; everyone has been given their own Keep Cups to take to the café next door and milk is now delivered in glass bottles. They’re even learning Te Reo Maori.

Whitebait is a proud supporter of Cholmondeley Children’s Centre. Janine is the chair of the board and Jason was recently the MC for the annual fundraiser, Little Gems: A Night of Denim, Diamonds & Dancing. “It’s a beautiful Canterbury charity. We’re both deeply passionate about respite care for our local children. It’s been going for 93 years due to the huge generosity of Canterbury.”

Children are also at the centre of a small young charity, Uru Mānuka where Janine sits on the board alongside Garry Moore to ensure all Canterbury kids get the digital tools they need for equitable and open access to their education. And then there’s the Māia Health Foundation which Janine is a part of and has the support of the Gunns. “I love the ethos. It’s about enhancing the health experience in Canterbury by taking our health services from good to great.”

The project-based charity is very close to achieving its $5.2m target to get a large rooftop helipad on top of Christchurch Hospital’s new building and fold-down parent beds into the children’s ward. And you just know Janine is going to put her heart and soul into helping in any way she can.


 

A heart of gold: Q&A with Tim Shadbolt


Invercargill’s long-time mayor Tim Shadbolt can now be called Sir Tim after being made a Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for his services to local government and the community.

 

 

But the 72-year-old is still just Mayor Tim; the fun-loving Southlander with a cheeky grin and a heart of gold. We caught up with Sir Tim about one of his latest charitable endeavours.

You’ve partnered with the lovely people at Slingshot to raise funds for the Koha Kai charity through a unique limited edition modem (pictured) with your own mug on it. How important is Koha Kai to you as a charity?
What I liked about it was that it was looking at feeding kids and that’s so crucial to their development. It goes further than providing lunches; it looks at the whole process, from horticulture and the packaging of food, to distributing it as well. So it’s about so much more than just providing food.


How does it feel to be in a position where you can utilise your profile to make a real difference?
I think people who are well-known tend to spend a lot of their time and energy supporting charitable projects, which is a great. Myself and Gary McCormick did fundraise for a school in Kaikoura just recently. As a mayor you’re expected to contribute directly or indirectly to good causes and it’s great to be able to give a good boost to the community.


Standing-up for your causes and supporting the average Kiwi have always been important to you…
Yes, the opportunities come in all sorts of ways, often unexpectedly, such as Dancing with the Stars. I did the first season of Dancing with the Stars and raised $75,000 for the MS Society, so you can have fun and enjoy yourself and get the pleasure of giving.


Now you’ve got a Sir added to your name, how does it feel to have achieved the accolade?
I get teased a little bit by some of my counsellors that now I’m a knight, so now I’m their nightmare! I think it’s part of that Kiwi thing, making light of awards like this. On a more serious note, they are appreciated. Some of the work I’ve been involved in, especially with education projects like Zero Free Schemes, have had a big impact on provincial cities like Invercargill.


You were described as an inspirational leader and you’ve obviously made a lot of significant decisions during your mayoralty, why do you think people have connected so strongly with you?
Well I like to think I’ve added an element of humour to charitable work and local politics, carrying my concrete mixer behind the mayoral car for example and I think people appreciate that element in my work. Local government can be a rather droll affair at times; I hope I’ve added energy, excitement and humour to it.


What do the next 12 months have in store for you?
Well first of all there’s an election coming up in five months, then I’ll work out my options from there, but hopefully carrying on the same work I’ve been doing for 32 years as a mayor and I guess another 10 years as a social and political activist.


 

Allyson Gofton on beautiful baking: Q&A


Allyson Gofton has been a beloved New Zealand cook and television personality for 30 years since first cutting her teeth in the test kitchen of New Zealand Woman’s Weekly.

 

 

Allyson was recently in the city for a fundraising event for St Johns in conjunction with Westburn School and Piccadilly Bookshop to release The Baker’s Companion, the third iteration of Gofton’s The Great New Zealand Baking Book, which first came out 25 years ago. We caught up with her about making magic in the kitchen.

You’ve just released your new book The Baker’s Companion, can you tell us about the book?
After Food in a Minute, I wanted to pull all my knowledge of baking into a book. The Baker’s Companion is about trying to explain why your cakes may fail. It’s about making sure the money you invest in baking is a success. It’s about the enjoyment of baking; passing down the knowledge of baking so that when you go to cook, you get the information that’s not written into a recipe. It’s all there. It’s certainly not about glamorous baking or creating expensive items. It’s about enjoyment, good flavour and making sure that when it comes out of the oven, it looks like the picture you see in front of you.


The book is focused on beautiful baking – are you all about the sweet side of life or do you get into the savoury side as well?
Do I like the sweet side? Yes I do, though I don’t do chocolate, but I love festive food, like Easter, and I do enjoy the savoury side of life as well. Slow-cooked food is something I love – slow-cooked food and baking are two genres I have become known for in my career. Interestingly, I trained as a chef in the late 70s (which is giving away my age) and trained here as a food writer. So my skills are in professional cookery, but I was also a communicator of food. Over the years I’ve worked as a food editor for Next magazine, through which I had to understand all aspects of food. I’ve done a professional apprenticeship, and then I did journalism papers before constantly travelling and updating my skills. As a food writer, it was usually about family food; food writers today concentrate on one genre, such as cake decoration, vegan recipes or gluten-free material. In the career I’ve had, you had to write across all genres. This is the third baking book I’ve done over 30 years. It’s been updated and upgraded over the years, so it reflects where we’ve come today. Things in cooking and baking come in and out of favour. Once upon a time you would whisk up a sponge. Now you melt butter and milk together and bake it. How we bake has changed so much over time.


What’s your favourite recipe from the book?
One of my favourites is the Kasbah Date Scones (on page 62 of this issue of Metropol). I love the photo and I also love date scones. This one is made like a swiss roll and inside is a lovely spiral of dates cooking with orange oil and Kasbah spices, like in the Middle East. It’s a lovely modern twist on the scone, taking a traditional recipe to the next level.


You’ve been making culinary magic for more than 30 years now and you’re just as popular now as you were back then. Why do you think New Zealand has connected so strongly with what you do?
I have been lucky to have been able to follow my dreams. I left home wanting to be like a Margaret Fulton or Tui Flower; being a good editor was my dream. You did a lot of hard work, a lot you didn’t get paid for. I happened to stumble across magazines. I come from a very humble family, a blue-collar working family from Tasmania. I love home cooks; I love family; I love that people try to cook in their homes. You don’t have to make café style food in the house; it’s about small budget, short order cooking. I think somehow in amongst all that, people have enjoyed my food, but they can see I’m just like them. I love learning about food. I love studying food; its role in our lives, how society has changed the way we eat and its impact. I spent four years in advertising as an accounts manager to pay the rent. One of my jobs was looking at how we market food to consumers. I found that fascinating. It doesn’t matter if you don’t cut your own onions. Tomorrow’s children will probably buy them frozen and already cut, but the most important thing is they cook for the family. You can buy ingredients pre-chopped and pre-sliced, but you’re still cooking it; that’s all that really matters. It’s not, ‘ooh she doesn’t peel her carrots’; what’s important is that we are eating them.


You headed down our way recently for an event in conjunction with Westburn School and Piccadilly Bookshop that was a fundraiser for St Johns. How does it feel to get to use your profile for the greater good?
I’ve been asked so many times to go to places and if I can do something for the community, I always try to say yes. My father was awarded an Order of Australia for his work for the charity Legacy. They raised money and looked after children of the widows of World War II. We spent Saturdays doing sport things with these children without parents; if we got too many presents, we gave to those children; if we won something in a raffle, it was given to those children. My parents instilled in me that we only need what we need.


What does the next 12 months have in store for you?
I’m a strong believer in a reasonably traditional role of mother. I’m a bit old fashioned like that. We have a family business in Auckland, a factory that makes cosmetics believe it or not. My husband works in Auckland, so at the moment my role is to settle the family into our new home in Cambridge (from Auckland), then put the lipstick on a Friday night with a glass of wine. I have more ideas than I have time to live. I have some ideas, but they’re constantly changing. I would love to work with schools and teenagers, teaching them about what you need to eat, looking at how the world’s normalising ‘treats’ as ‘snacks’. So I have lots of ideas, but first I’ve got 400 boxes to unpack; if someone said the decluttering process of moving takes a weight off your shoulders, the process is nothing other than laborious. So that’s this year, decluttering, then we’ll see what next year brings.


 

Toni Street’s Beautiful Surrogacy Journey: Q&A


Nine months ago, popular New Zealand broadcaster Toni Street got the addition to her family she never thought she would have. Health complications meant she had closed the door on bringing baby number 3 into the world, but then her best friend Sophie Braggins offered to be a surrogate for Toni and her husband Matt France. Lachlan Stephen France arrived on 9 August 2018. We caught up with Toni about her surrogacy journey and juggling being a busy mum of three.

 

 

 

First of all, how’s it going being a busy mum of three working around your radio job?
I just love being a mum of three; it’s chaotic but I love every minute of it. I actually found the step from one to two children harder, once you have three you’re so busy anyway! Because I’m up at 4:30am I get a lot of my work done before the kids are even awake and I love being around in the afternoons for school pick up and their activities. Lachie has been a really chilled baby, but he’s just starting to move so watch this space!


Your best friend Sophie offered to be your surrogate and delivered your third child Lachlan last August then you adopted him in December, can you describe the journey?
I still pinch myself that this has actually happened for me. We never thought we’d have a third child and my best friend sacrificed so much to make it happen. I just have so much love and gratitude for her. The whole process has been completely humbling and emotional and so, so special for all of us.


You’ve been fighting to have our 64-year-old adoption laws changed – how frustrating and complex was the process and how would you like to see this transformed?
We would have done anything to have Lachie, so we felt lucky to even be in the position to be going through the process. I can only speak to our specific situation, but it did seem bizarre that we needed to adopt our own genetic child… it felt like resources were wasted when we were being vetted by child protection services. Surrogacy has so many manifestations and our laws do not reflect this modern miracle.


Was not adding that last piece to your family puzzle ever an option?
Absolutely, it was my bestie that encouraged us to explore surrogacy; without the push from her we would have closed the door on having a third baby.


How much of an emotional and yet incredible experience was surrogacy?
The whole process from start to finish was emotional. From the moment Sophie offered to do this for us, to watching her belly grow with our son, to watching her give birth and her recovery it was incredibly emotional for all of us… but throughout the whole process we all knew we were doing something life changing and it was such a miracle.


You’ve also had some difficult times with your health over the past few years. How has this changed your outlook on life?
I’ve always known life is precious, as I’ve lost three siblings, but being sick myself made me really worry for my own kids. It’s a scary feeling thinking you might not be around for them. I am very conscious to appreciate each day and to do what makes you happy in this life.


You’ve done some inspiring roles across both television and radio – what drew you to the industry?
I loved the idea of getting to meet incredible people and I couldn’t believe people got paid to report on sport, that was my big passion in the beginning!


What do you consider to be some of your career highlights?
Reporting on the Olympic Games in China, hosting the America’s Cup in San Francisco and being asked to host a primetime show at TVNZ (Seven Sharp).


What does the next 12 months have in store for you?
I’ll continue hosting the Laura, Sam and Toni radio show on The Hits and filling in at TVNZ on Seven Sharp. Life will be super eventful at home, Lachie will start walking and I can’t wait to enjoy my downtime with the kids with a few holidays.


 

Making: sweet dreams


Each passing season brings with it the perfect opportunity to introduce a new aesthetic to the bedroom. When it comes to the cooler months on their way, it’s all about hunkering down.

 

 

So how do you create a homely haven in time for winter? We’ve got our top tips right here along with a mood board of our favourite creature comforts.

  1. Tap into textures
    Velvet bedheads and plush, comfy cushions are two ways to warm up your rooms, along with woven plate hangings and textured window shades.
  2. Luxe layers
    Blankets and throws are the darlings of the design world, playing a role in both form and function – ready to pull out on a whim or layer up on the back of a couch when they just need to look the part.
  3. Knitty and nice
    Knitted materials have a way of creating cosy and the same can be said about our living spaces as well as our wardrobes. Add some knitted ottomans or throws to create spaces that are knitty and nice.
  4. Light it up
    Layers of lighting is a beautiful way to add warmth to a space, from table lamps and floor lamps to differing lengths of hanging lights.
  5. Rugged up
    Always have a good supply of soft wool and fleece throws. They look inviting spilling out of a basket to soften a corner of the room and they’re always on hand when the mercury starts to drop.
  6. Craving curves
    Curves are a move away from the stark sharp corners of furniture and they’re great at softening and warming our homes.


 

Stretton’s Sartorial Success: Q&A with Annah Stretton


Her name graces some of the country’s most elegantly feminine designs, forming a sartorial success story Annah Stretton has quite famously built up from nothing. It’s the story of a young mum from rural Waikato who started a fashion line from a dairy farm, making a million dollars in its first year.

 

 

Almost three decades later, as she prepares to hand the reigns of her fashionable empire over to daughter Sammi, she’s still as passionate today about everything she has turned her talented hand to.

Can you tell us about your latest collection Undone Glamour and the inspiration behind it?
The collection is taking its style cues from that all important Art Deco era; an era that signalled the winds of change for a women’s potential and place in the world and saw hemlines and hair length start to rise up in response. There was a freedom of spirit and celebration that infused the fashion of the day that will forever be synonymous with glamour and that made it perfect for the ‘glamour your way’ feel that we wanted the winter collection to have. The collection uses a jewel-like colour palette of cerise, dark sapphire and emerald green and pairs that with the bold and beautiful fl oral and geometric patterns in velvet and other beautiful fabrications that the Annah Stretton brand has become famous for. Design wise; there is a rich array of dresses, wide length pants, jumpsuits and two-piece outfits cut to suit the widest possible range of body shapes and sizes.


How would you define your design philosophy?
The Annah Stretton brand has always been about bringing colour, femininity and fabulousness to every woman’s special occasion and work wardrobe. At long last, we are living in the age of beauty where youth and body size no longer define what is beautiful. Today beauty is about being comfortable in our own skin and celebrating our body by feeling and looking fabulous. I like to think that our brand has always been in this space, with designs and styling that celebrate the beauty in all women.


Can you tell us how you were able to establish yourself in such a cutthroat industry?
Getting established was the easy bit. Back in 1992, the competitor landscape was reasonably one dimensional. There was no online shopping, no international retail chains and very little product was being manufactured offshore, particularly at the top end of town. Success was all about establishing a strong retail footprint and building a loyal following through the design and manufacture of a well-made product. Fast forward to 2019 and life in the fashion industry couldn’t be more different. Competition is global and retailing is a 24/7 operation. New Zealand women can shop anytime, anywhere, with any label at any price point. To remain in business requires constant vigilance and reinvention. Nothing is as it was and the future demands that no complacency ever slips into a business. New Zealand has seen so many great labels suffer and ultimately close their doors as retail therapy goes online and goes global. Reinvention and a customer-centric focus is the key to surviving and thriving in this industry, but it is never a guarantee of recurring success.


In an industry that is said to take no prisoners, how have you not only been able to be an incredible success, but been able to remain current?
I guess that comes down to how you measure success. For me, success has never been about ‘the Boat, the Bach and the BMW’ to coin a phrase. Instead, it’s always been about making a contribution far broader than the delivery of a healthy bottom line. Right from the very beginning, the philanthropic heart of the company has been beating loudly. The staff, the customers and the community causes that we support have always been so much more important than the dollars. As a country, we are now starting to acknowledge the value of our human capital, but as a business we’ve been in this space for the last ten years. You only need to look at the average tenure of my retail and head office staff to see this ethos in action.
That same loyalty has also been present amongst all the wonderful women who continue to love the label. Their faithful support has enabled me to set up my charitable foundation and begin to make an impact on some of New Zealand’s more significant social challenges.


Why do you think people have connected so strongly with what you do?
Possibly because we are so much more than a fashion label. Everything we do is about making a bigger contribution in the community. When women buy from us they enable me to advance the social causes that have reached epic proportions in New Zealand. The social divide and therefore social challenges that we now face are significant. The only way forward is to apply new thinking and in doing so give hope and purpose to those who have never had any. We all deserve to travel down a pathway that brings us joy, and I’m absolutely passionate about making this happen for the socially disadvantaged women that I work with.


 

Editor’s Perspective: April 25 2019


“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen nor even touched, but must be felt with the heart.”
– Helen Keller

 

A tribute concert for the victims of the Christchurch terror attacks earlier this month was about “moving out of the darkness and into the light”, according to MC of the event and New Zealander of the Year, Mike King. Just over a month after the tragedy, more than 28 of New Zealand’s most beloved entertainers banded together to perform to a crowd of close to 20,000 at Christchurch Stadium. Dave Dobbyn was the first performer to hit the stage; the music veteran drawing thousands to their feet with Welcome Home, a 2006 song written as a message against racism which has become somewhat of an anthem for the country in the wake of the massacre.

‘Home’ became somewhat of a recurring theme at the You Are Us Aroha Nui concert. “Home is not a place, it’s the people that make a place home,” Shihad lead singer Jon Toogood announced to the crowd before launching into the band’s 1996 hit song, Home Again. The Christchurch Combined Choir performed three songs, joined by Jason Kerrison and Sol3 Mio respectively. The event held special significance for Sol3 Mio, who performed at the event, after the uncle of singer Pene Pati’s Egyptian-born Kiwi wife was one of those shot in the mosque massacre. “This song speaks of a world where every man, woman and child lives in peace … that world is here, that world is Aotearoa,” Pene says.

As the lyrics to Welcome Home tell us, “Maybe we’ll find that new way. So welcome home, see I made a space for you now. Welcome home from the bottom of our heart.”


 

Pete Evans

Dishing the drama: Q&A with Pete Evans


Pete Evans has been cooking his way around Australia – and in fact, the world – since the age of 19, before being thrust into the global spotlight 10 years ago when he and Manu Feildel started dishing the drama on
My Kitchen Rules.

 

Pete Evans

 

Known affectionately as Paleo Pete, the Australian chef, author and television personality most recently headed the award-winning documentary film The Magic Pill which shows the impact food can have on people’s health, now streaming globally on Netflix.

While he’s courted controversy for his mission to cheerlead the caveman diet into the mainstream, at the heart of Pete’s philosophy is a desire to encourage others to embrace a happier and healthier lifestyle.
We caught up with Pete about his food and life philosophies.

 

What are some of your favourite healthy recipes?
I can’t go past simple ingredients such as seafood and meat and then team them with some organic vegetables either in a soup, a roast, a barbecue, salad or a curry.

 

How would you sum up your food philosophy?
Simple and nourishing.

 

What are some of the key things you do to keep healthy and well during the year?
Mainly a species specific diet is key for optimal health. I also focus on emotional wellbeing and removing negative patterns and beliefs and creating greater awareness about self. Being so motivated and successful, how do you prevent yourself from burning out? I live a very simple life – love of self and others, great connection with other people, simple diet and living in alignment with what it means to be human.

 

What attracted you to cooking?
It was a life skill that I believe everyone should have the ability to learn.

 

What are you looking forward to in the tenth season of My Kitchen Rules?
Some more great cooking and entertainment.

 

Why do you think people have connected so strongly with you and what you do?
Truth always resonates with people and I always speak my truth and then it is up to someone how they interpret that for themselves.

 

What is the most fulfilling or enjoyable aspect of what you do?
I would say living each day to the fullest in the moment and expressing myself creatively and having loving relationships is very fulfilling.

 

What do the next 12 months have in store for you?
More breathing, more sleeping, more eating, more loving, more learning, more teaching, more movement, more play and more fun!

 



 

Metropol Editor Melinda Collins

Editor’s Perspective: 28 March issue


“The only path wide enough for us all is love.”
– Kamand Kojouri

 

Metropol Editor Melinda Collins
Metropol Editor Melinda Collins

 

Friday 15 March started like any other day in Christchurch, but it ended like no other day has ever ended in this country before. The events that took place at 1:40pm that day have changed our country forever. But it’s our responsibility to ensure those changes are for the better.

As Ruby Jones’ achingly simple and yet profoundly powerful drawing says, “This is your home and you should have been safe here”. Such a short sentence and yet one which says so much. It is our home; it is the home of all of us and it is the responsibility of each and every one of us to ensure this home remains safe for everyone, because the fact that some of us do not feel safe in this home is not a new phenomenon. There have been people within our society that haven’t felt safe for a very long time now.

The uncomfortable truth is that there is a ‘them’ and ‘us’ discourse that is prevalent in our society. While we’ve been saying all the right things for the past fortnight, that they are us, that we are them, that your sons and daughters are my sons and daughters, that you are my brother and my sister, that your family is my family, it is time to start living the truth of those sentiments.

It is no longer enough to be a bystander. If they are our children, our sisters and our brothers, it is our place to speak up; it is our place to protect them; it is our place to ensure each one of us is safe here. It is your duty and it is mine; it is our duty because there is no ‘them’ and ‘us’; there is simply ‘us’.

From the teams at Metropol and Inkwise, which has partnered with us to bring this memorial special to you, al salam alaikum, peace be upon you.