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A new character enters the universe!! 🧚‍♀️

We’ve just hit one whole year of sending you this newsy, which means it’s also been one whole year of us encouraging you to support the media you love!! Since it’s such a special moment for us, we thought we’d give you a lil SYSCA sale!! 
From now, and across the weekend, if you type in “ONEYEAR” at the checkout when you go to become an annual ✨SYSCA Supporter✨ you’ll get 15% off for the whole year (and this means access to our Saturday Culture Vulture newsletter, all our playlists, our book recommendations list and more 👀)

Holy shit - I didn’t get to talk to you about it because yesterday’s edish was a special one (AND HI TO ALL OUR NEW SYSCA SUPPORTERS!! I SEE YOU!) - but on Wednesday night, Rubes, Liv and I had our first game of Dungeons and Dragons… and it was everything. Our Dungeon Master (also our podcast producer AND bandmate AND best person in the world) made it so special for us. He’d created the most incredible story to start us off, we met each of our characters and really got to know them, there was ambient music playing behind the story, we had the most GORGEOUS DICE and we just completely fell into the world we were creating (so much so that we forgot to break for dinner and played for literally hours without even realising.)
The incredible part for us was that it’s like a storybook mixed with a build-your-own adventure game because you’re listening and imagining the world you’re playing in but you’re also making the decisions about how you want it to play out! It’s truly a magical experience and I can see why you all love it - we’ve already booked in our next session for Monday!!!
I hope you all have a restful weekend and I’ll see you on Monday 🥺 xxx
  • The UN has accused China of “serious human rights violations” in a long-awaited report into allegations of abuse in Xinjiang province
  • New episode of The Shit Show
  • Meet the newest character in the SYSCA Universe: Laura!!
  • mistakenly sent a customer $10.5 million instead of a $100 refund
  • Comedian Sandy Honig Went On An Absolute Spewfest Outside Her Insurance Office Because They Denied Treatment For Her Chronic Vomiting Condition
  • It’s Friday so you get horoscopes
  • Some funny Leonardo DiCaprio tweets
The UN has accused China of "serious human rights violations" in a long-awaited report into allegations of abuse in Xinjiang province
In a publication that China didn’t want to be released, the UN has accused China of “serious human rights violations” against Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities, in the Xinjiang province. We’ve talked about this quite a few times in the newsy - and I feel like we get small bits of info every now and then about what’s happening in Xinjiang - but this feels like something with a bit more to hold on to. Keep in mind as you’re reading this that several countries have already described what China is doing in Xinjiang as genocide. 
More than one million members of the Uighur Muslim community, in particular, are trapped in systems of detention (they’re literally put into what China calls ‘re-education’ camps) and this report has found that they’ve been subjected to “patterns of ill-treatment” including “incidents of sexual and gender-based violence”, as well as forced medical treatment and “discriminatory enforcement of family planning and birth control policies”.
The UN is recommending that China immediately takes steps to release “all individuals arbitrarily deprived of their liberty,” but China continues to deny this is happening at all. I’ll keep you posted!
New episode of The Shit Show
Launching a Rocky & Eating Some Choccy
Meet Laura: our newest Ray of sunshine (yes, her last name is Ray and yes, I am obsessed with puns)
Laura is the newest character to join the SYSCA universe and I cannot wait for you to meet her and adore her as much as I do 🥺
Mōrena! When Luce first floated the idea of me entering the SYSCA universe earlier this year (over pasta of course) I honestly thought she’d just had a few wines and I’d get a hangxiety-ridden message from her the next day, but no - here we are!!! It’s very surreal / daunting to have watched this community grow (so daunting that I procrastinated for farrrrr too long on this) and now knowing that I’m a lil part of it… wild!
Luce and I got kinda blind-dated by an old colleague (ty Matt!) who said we would vibe and he was not wrong. The gals and I had one lengthy coffee discussing music / mental health / attachment styles and the rest is SYSCA-ry. And of course, in classic Aotearoa fashion there was already crossover - I had wanted to do some work collabs forever and SYSCA had shared some of my writing before (which you can check out here if you like - spot the occasional Bel features!), and now it’s all come full circle. I am feeling EXTREMELY chuffed to be beaming in all the way from London - which brings me to my story.
How to ✨romanticise✨ moving to a new country... even when everything goes wrong
Now you don’t know me (yet), but if there is one thing I love it is familiarity, closely followed by a desire to romanticise almost anything. I can’t just ‘like’ a pastry from the bakery near my flat, I have to ‘stroll across the sunlit village green’ to get that pastry every damn week, indulging in a probably-fabricated sense of friendship because I know my barista’s enneagram number (we’ll get into this another day) and changing my bio to “90% cheese twist” because this pastry is now a core part of my identity. So unsurprisingly, moving halfway across the world several weeks ago to an unfamiliar city literally famous for nobody giving a shit about you has been both an exercise in ✨romanticising my life✨ and completely undone my sense of self.
A gas leak, but make it chic
Let me backtrack - we moved to London at the start of this month and after many middle-of-the-night calls trying to view flats while half asleep in NZ, we took the first place that would have us, with not much (bar a grainy WhatsApp video) to go off. She’s small and quirky but full of light and near a gorg lil park (which now resembles more of a festival dust pit because the world is actually burning) and to be honest it was all feeling very Everything I Know About Love. That was until I woke up on our third morning here to the faint but distinct smell of gas. One call to National Grid and a confirmed 🚨relatively serious🚨 gas leak later, we are now 21 days into cooking on a camping stove and even I am finding it hard to romanticise our new morning ritual where my partner kindly fills a bucket with tepid water from the kettle and scoops it over me so that I can have a sad little shower. 
Sweaty and late to my new job, but make it chic
Putting our lack of gas aside, I have a new job to go to!! Being the Type A gal I am, I had grand plans the day before I started to go out and find some work-appropriate shoes, figure out at least 3 different routes to my office in case of delays/tube strike/heatwave-induced chaos, and maybe spend an hour on incognito mode browsing my new colleagues on LinkedIn. I was peacefully scrolling when my manager messaged “see you soon!” and I shriek/gagged because of course my google calendar was still SET TO NZ TIME and my vacant vacation brain missed the giant red flag of a meeting being scheduled for 4.30AM 🙃🙃🙃
[Luce note: For anyone wondering, Laura did make it to her first day on the job]
Struggling to build a new community, but make it chic
I have a tendency to come in fairly hot, and sometimes this culminates in DMing people I don’t necessarilyyyyy know and eventually asking them for coffee (I met one of my best friends this way - ty for not blocking me Beka!). Something I love about Aotearoa is that it doesn’t take long to build up your ‘locals’ and find those peripheral relationships that make you feel rooted in your community. So, newly arrived in London and already desperate for any connection I dm’d a COFFEE SHOP near me saying I’d moved into the area and would love to come over (to the cafe? their house? honestly I hate myself???) and meet them. I’m three weeks on seen and half a stamped loyalty card down, yet to achieve literally any sort of mutual interaction but we will persist!!!!
Anyway, all of this is to say nothing really preps you for moving countries for the first time and especially leaving Aotearoa where the sense of community can be so wonderful & unique (that is also something for another time). I have been SLAMMED by a why-did-we-do-this-and-when- will-this-start-to-feel-the-tiniest-bit-normal whirlwind and have such a new appreciation for anyone who has uprooted cities /relationships/careers and had to face the unfamiliar (I’d appreciate any and all advice plz!)
In the meantime, I’ll be self-soothing with Love Island reruns and unwaveringly ordering flat whites.
See you when Luce will have me next,
Laura xxx mistakenly sent a customer $10.5 million instead of a $100 refund
“The customer kept the money”
It’s been a hot minute since I’ve talked about Crypto in here (or should I say a cold minute since I hear it’s winter in cryptoland) but when I saw this headline I had to bring this story to you all: 
“ accidentally transferred $10.5 million AUD (~$7.2 million USD) to an Australian customer instead of issuing a standard $100 AUD (~$68 USD) due to a pretty unfortunate typo.
According to Australian news outlet 7News (via CoinTelegraph), the exchange didn’t even notice the error until seven months later, and by that time, a portion of the money was already gone.”
First of all… that is not a low-stakes error. That, my friend, is a high-stakes error. Imagine making a typo and being $10mil out of pocket!!??? Couldn’t be me doing that job. Second of all… didn’t even notice $10m was missing???? For seven months??? Damn, if you’re playing with that much cash that you don’t notice 10m missing you almost deserve to lose it…
I know what you’re thinking - what did this person do with the cash?
Well, they only used $1.3m of it, and it was to buy his sister a “luxurious, five-bedroom home” (Squish are you listening?) Unfortunately though, when realised their error, they took the recipient of the cash to court and they had to sell the house. All good things must come to an end I guess.
Comedian Sandy Honig Went On An Absolute Spewfest Outside Her Insurance Office Because They Denied Treatment For Her Chronic Vomiting Condition
Content warning: vomit
This has to be my fave headline of 2022 so far, and I’m not surprised that it’s by one of my faves - Kelsey Weekman. Here’s what she wrote about it:
“Vomiting in a viral video is an unorthodox way of getting your insurance company to cover a medical treatment — but comedian Sandy Honig felt like she’d run out of other options.
After her insurance company Anthem denied coverage for a procedure, Honig, best known for her role as a writer and actor in the Adult Swim show Three Busy Debras, recorded herself hurling her guts up repeatedly outside an Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield office to appeal the decision, and then posted the video on YouTube.”
If you can stomach it:

I’ve been struggling w a stomach disorder called gastroparesis, which causes me to vomit almost everything I eat. my insurance denied coverage for a procedure, so I went to their office to appeal their decision.

full vid here:
She did get this response on Twitter from the company: 
Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield
@sandyhonig Sandy, would you please email us at so we can look into this? Please include your name and member ID#.
But that was after they’d sent a couple of policemen to her house so….
It's Friday so you get horoscopes!
Some funny leo tweets:
Mohanad Elshieky
It’s not that the door wasn’t big enough for both Rose and Jack, it’s just that Rose turned 25 that day
We haven't seen Leo DiCaprio in 12 years 🤔
Peachy Keenan
The girl Leonardo DiCaprio will dump when he’s 72 was born today
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