Move over Lorde, there's a new "Queen Bee" in town. Bevan Chuang, the former mistress of Mayor Len Brown, is using the sobriquet for her new venture - as an online clairsentient medium. She tells The Diary why clairvoyancy is her calling.
"I started going to a psychic because, well, things have been a bit shit for me over the last year, as you know. I guess I was looking for hope.
"Then I went to some psychic development classes about six months ago and I became more curious about the spiritual world, and I realised I had some sort of gift. Clairvoyancy became part of a healing process for me."
Chuang, 33, has set up a blog called Queen Bee Says, where she offers oracle card readings for $20 a pop. She will also do personal readings via email and mobile phone. Her website takes credit card transactions through PayPal.
"I'm new at this, I'm not a professional. I know people who are amazing psychics, but I have made a couple of predictions ... and I sensed Judith Collins was going to lose something important to her. I didn't realise it was to be her job.
"I've done a few free readings for friends, but for me, clairvoyancy is about offering hope and being positive."
Chuang believes everyone has psychic abilities.
"It's that gut feeling that you have. I'm still learning how to harness my gift so I can help others. Sometimes I feel like a counsellor at times when I read the tarot cards. People come looking for answers but my job is to deliver the message and make sense of it."
Chuang, who works as a PR and events consultant, will be a guest speaker at a spirituality event in Avondale in November, where people will pay $25 to hear her speak.
She says clairvoyancy is just a hobby at the moment - one that provides her hope.
"I haven't foreseen a new man in my life," she laughed. "There's no message on that front."
But she had predictions for some other high-profile Kiwis when The Diary asked for her prophecy.
Who is Winston Peters' preferred choice for Prime Minister?
"John Key and the Nats," Chuang says.
Will the All Blacks beat Argentina tomorrow night?
"Yes, we will win."
What's in Len Brown's future? After much deliberation, Chuang says: "I predict he will retire after this mayoralty and disappear from public life. I'm not sure if he will still be married, but he will live a low-key life and be happy."
Millie's "bittersweet" day
Millie Elder-Holmes has described attending Wednesday's court hearing for the man accused of murdering her boyfriend, Connor Morris, as "bittersweet".
The 33-year-old man who has been charged with his murder was not in court but entered a not guilty plea through his lawyer. Name suppression has been continued until today, and a trial date has been set for August next year.
"Thank you so much to everyone who turned up and supported us, it really meant a lot," Elder-Holmes wrote on Facebook.
"Definitely a bittersweet day, but good to have finally got this process of court going and we can start working towards getting justice for Connor and his family.
"But a year's wait ... wow."
Waititi says Aussies are funnier
He's the funny man of Kiwi culture. But Taika Waititi, who is in Australia on a publicity blitz for his vampire movie What We Do In The Shadows, wasn't joking when he said our nearest neighbours are more humorous.
Film director Taika Waititi is in Australia on a PR tour for his vampire movie.
"I find Australians funnier than New Zealanders," the 39-year-old filmmaker told Sydney's Daily Telegraph, straight-faced. He listed The Castle and Love Serenade among his favourite films.
"Kiwi films aren't traditionally funny ... Sam Neill, I think, coined the phrase 'cinema of the unease' to describe it. I mean, I love Jane Campion's stuff, but her last thing, Top of the Lake, was super-bleak."
He reckons the brooding tone of Kiwi films can be attributed to New Zealand's physical isolation from the rest of the world and the weather.
"We are like the Iceland of the South Pacific."
News in short this week ...
• TVNZ weather babe Renee Wright has not been dumped from the network, as scuttlebutt suggested this week. Brit-born Dan Corbett has joined the weather watch TV team, alongside Jim Hickey and Karen Olsen, but where does that leave Renee? A rep for One News said Wright was made a contractor at the start of the year and will continue to fill in regularly.
TVNZ's Renee Wright is still part of the channel's weather team.
• Sally Ridge is holidaying in Samoa this week with her boyfriend Warren Fenning.
Ridge cried poor to the courts last month, and has a bankruptcy hearing approaching on October 13. Her ex, Adam Parore, filed bankruptcy proceedings against Sally in an effort to get $100,000 court costs awarded, which she was ordered to pay. She said she didn't have the means.
Sally Ridge and boyfriend Warren Fenning are holidaying in Samoa. Photo /Norrie Montgomery
• Who knew that Kiwi pop star Kimbra battles severe asthma? She keeps an asthma inhaler close to her microphone on stage in case she has an attack. The 24-year-old recording star, who has battled the chronic condition her entire life, helped launch Asthma Awareness Week in Australia this week.
• Was anyone surprised that the haka baffled Americans this week? The Tall Blacks performed the warrior dance ahead of their Fiba Basketball World Cup match against Team USA in Spain on Tuesday. Their opponents looked perplexed. Cameras zoomed on US players Derrick Rose, Kenneth Faried and James Harden looking baffled. Not sure why.
Their coach, Mike Krzyzewski, said his players were told in advance about the Kiwi tradition. Here's hoping the All Blacks get a better cultural reception in Chicago come November.