Meanwhile, elsewhere on the internet…

Hello, a brief post to make it clear I am neither dead not maimed, but I have been working on a few other non-blog writing assignments of late I should plug here.

Did you know that yours truly was a 13-year-old American lad during the summer of 1985, the same time that the new season of “Stranger Things” is set in? Head on over to Radio New Zealand to read my take on “Stranger Things 3” and what it was really like in the far-off mystical ’80s. 

ST3_Production_Still_4.0

Also over at the excellent website The Spinoff, I’ve crafted a somewhat expanded and possibly even improved version of my piece on the end of Mad magazine, and how it influenced the culture that’s all around us – even here in little ol’ New Zealand.

Go forth and read my extracurricular wordage, and new content shall appear here in another day or so!

So where were we?

My name is Nik, and I’m ready to blog again. 

I’ve been a journalist in one form or another for 25 years now, and wrote a blog* for about 8 years from 2004-2012, spewing thousands of words about this, that and the other thing. 

Starting a blog again may seem so 2007, but I’m tired of the other options. Social media’s been good and terrible for the written word in equal measure. Hey, I tweet, I facebook, I instagram (but no selfies, please), but I’m looking to something more than endless scrolling for that dopamine hit. I’m coming back to blogging because it trains me to write more than a few pithy sentences.

Since I got tired of regular blogging in 2012, I’ve gradually come to realise how important it was to me to write more. It’s a safety valve for the brain. I want to stop feeling distracted and anxious all the time and these days, that problem feels worse than ever. 

I won’t blog about current politics, because if I did it’d just be one inchoate scream echoing over and over into the infinite, and I’ll avoid weighing in with the hot take on the outrage of the day like every other person with a keyboard. I’ll get personal from time to time but I won’t talk about what I had for lunch. 

Instead, I’ll focus on what keeps me going in this tattered world. Usually that’s art in any of its forms – an old movie I’m digging, a classic Elvis Costello single, a Jack Kirby comic book that blew my mind, a book that’s subtly skewed my brain in interesting ways. I’ll write sometimes about my travels and what it’s been like living as an American in New Zealand for more than a decade now.

I’ll try to get my scattered words on here once a week or so. Follow along if you like, bookmark or swipe right or whatever the cool kids do now to keep in touch, and thanks for reading. 

* I named my original blog “Spatula Forum” because it was the name of a newspaper column I did for years and years and I have no idea why I thought those two words were cool together, but I was stuck with it. Blog Mark II takes its tip from a terrific 1994 song by Guided By Voices of the same name. And that’s pretty much what I have to offer here … my impression now, of whatever shiny object has caught my eye.