#80: Berto Vaissiere

Furst Media colleague, 2005-2007

For a long time at Furst we had a running joke that went something like this: the office would be totally silent and somebody would call out "Hey Berto, what's the French word for baguette?" or "Hey Berto, what's the French word for ballet?" or "Hey Berto, what's the French word for croissant?"

Turns out English and French are often ze same.

#79: Michael Young

Wellington College classmate, 1994-1998

Michael Young had an awesome theory. He believed that Bruce Lee had faked his own death and was actually holed up in the woods somewhere training a militia of elite martial artists who would eventually overthrow the American government. When Tupac was 'killed' in 96 he was in on it too and Lee's forces were apparently gathering strength.

So if the revolution does come out of the woods via an army of fly-kicking, gangsta-rapping ninjas you heard it here first, courtesy of my man Mike.

13 People I Currently Know

So winter is coming and I've been crazily busy which means I've slowed down a bit on blog posts. But things aren't all bad - I've had a few other projects on the go so I thought I'd share a couple so you know I'm alive and haven't passed out in a ditch somewhere.

This is a new mural I just finished at my work. It's a portrait of all 13 people who work on the second floor of the W+K Amsterdam creative department. I'm really happy with it - we've got a good crew on our floor and this seemed like a good way to celebrate that.

Remember James Murray and Nato? I've been back in contact with both of them through this blog which has been great, they're both awesome guys. Better still, they've both got bands on the go right now (Razorwyre and Beastwars respectively) and I was lucky enough to get to draw posters for both recently. It was the first time I've done metal posters and I have to say I liked it - great to get dark for a change.

Well, hopefully I'll get back to doing the 200 People on a more regular basis soon. Don't worry, I'm still on it!

#78: Chris Hipkins

VUWSA President, 2000-2001

In my second year of university I started getting more involved in Salient, and through that, the Student's Association. Hipkins was the Student President at that time and although we used to tease him about his dress sense (Hooded t-shirts and giant sticking out sneaker tongues) he was actually a good guy.

And as it turns out, a good politician too. These days Chris is the MP for Rimutaka, and the Labour party's spokesperson for Internal Affairs. Seeing Chris elected to Parliament gave me some faith in New Zealand politics: Chris is a passionate, honest, hardworking and down-to-earth guy and if I lived in Rimutaka I'd be happy knowing he represented me.

#77: Tali Williams

Punk Mentor, good friend, 2000-2003

I met Tali at a time in my life where I was hungry for something new. She introduced me to DIY backyard gigs, warehouse parties, zines, old typewriters, mail-order vinyl, the floorpunch, roti chennai at Aunty Mena's and a whole bunch of politics I'd never thought about before. She explained feedback, took me to crusty gigs at tattoo parlours and showed me the joys of Hutt Valley record shopping and how to do a proper road trip.

In short, she taught me punk and I loved every minute of it.