Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Do we imitate all we love to hate

I slept through my alarm this morning and so spent the day in a sloth haze. My problem really is that my creative drive seems to kick in around 6 or later. It's highly impractical. If I could I'd just stay up all night and sleep during the day, I'm sure I'd get stuff done. Downside is of course nothing would be open so if I did need to venture out into the real word (shock horror), I'd be foiled. Oh well. I'm heading to the library tomorrow. Better late than never I suppose.

I've added in bits to my original draft, and also finished the re-write except for external bits - it's way longer than the original so I don't know if it's viable as a thesis submission. I'm getting antsy about my time constraints and the fact that I have no real idea about limitations or expectations for this thesis. Um, organisation fail? Also, I really can't be bothered editing my piece. Sigh.

Meanwhile, I think I've sorted out my postgrad woes. If I get in at USyd, I'll study part-time over two years and make sure I only have the exchange subject to do in the final semester. Problem solved. I've also applied for a one year writing work experience position, so that would fill in time nicely. I'm applying for an editorial assistant position as well, but I'm not getting my hopes up there.

I was listening to Folie a deux yesterday and was reminded of the time Abbi and I related all the tracks to Torchwood. It's been awhile since I've listened to the album and the thought of Torchwood these days generally makes me feel ill, so it was an absolutely gorgeous moment to give the album a spin and have those fuzzy, happy memories that have eluded me these past few months. Saving grace.

On the topic of music, I suggest everyone watch this gig video taken by the fabulous Abbi as it totally made my morning. Then listen to Vivarium, it is made of awesome. Scottish bands FTW.

Actually it's been new album nirvana around here lately, with both Daisy and The resistance getting a good workout. Today also marks the release of the new Kill Hannah album, and I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of my pre-order from the US. Good times.

Now I suppose if I do my editing, I can fit in another episode of Big Bang Theory before bed. Sheldon Cooper helps to ease the pain.

"The social sciences are largely hokum"

Music: You're turning into John Wayne - Twin Atlantic
Mood: I am trying to work, I swear

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

All you can do is just wait by the moon

I write to you from the quagmire of tertiary institutional bureaucracy, and boy, is it a grim, soul-sucking place to be. I have returned from my university's postgraduate information evening where I lodged my application. Let's just pause and reflect on that itself - I had to submit a personal statement, a CV, an outline of my writing experience, and an example of my creative work. Thirty three pages later, I have to fill in four pages worth of application forms and then the guy at the student centre asks where my academic transcript is. Yes, because there isn't enough paper there for you. Anyway, long story short, turns out UTS don't actually offer commonwealth supported places for their communications postgraduate degrees. So I'd have to pay I worked it out earlier, it comes down to little over $15,000. I'm not adverse to getting a bank loan for this, but it grates me that I should have to when other institutions are offering fully support places, as well as the option of government loans. Oh UTS, you're hurting my soul.

Thing is, I know I complain about UTS, but I actually really like my university. I like the casual, laid-back teaching style. Especially now that I am no longer an undergrad, it feels a lot more like a mutual exchange, like you are actually participating and there is none of that traditional lecturer/student roles. Then again, what do I know, it might be like that everywhere. The only problem with UTS is its inability to manage information, communicate with each other, or seemingly be organised in any way. Again, I'm sure this is a fault of all big tertiary institutes. I'm comfortable at UTS, I know what to expect and what is in turn expected of me. Also, I prefer the Master degree they're offering to the others, for one it is better paced as it stretches out an extra semester that the others don't cover. None of that changes the fact that I will have to give precedence to any other offer I receive simply because I am a destitute student who doesn't have that kind of cash sitting around. [And that's my travel saving money!]

It's just frustrating because I thought I had everything planned out. Finish Honours, do 1.5 year Master degree, spend latter part of second year overseas, settle into a decent relevant occupation. Now I'm all over the place. I hate being all over the place. See, my intention was to go overseas regardless of whether I was accepted for exchange or not, since that second year has a semester free. Now however, it's only one year, which I estimate finishes at the end of November. I can still go overseas of course, but it would be an awkward time (no one except retail hires of Christmas, and I have absolutely no retail experience). I wouldn't be able to stay as long as I liked since I effectively have half the saving time I originally anticipated. I know I could wait and go the same time I originally wanted to, but that would mean a year of basically doing nothing other than working at the Doctors and I'm sorry but I'm not the kind of person who can spend a year doing nothing. I'd go absolutely mad in a dead-end job, even if it is for saving purposes. Uni breaks up my life. I need it to keep me sane until I find a full-time position. So yes, little complications. Again, the only conclusion I can draw from this experience is simply to never plan anything. It's a lot less headache-inducing.

But I digress, I'm just giving myself unnecessary stress. I have a small forest worth of paperwork to peruse over hot chocolate and then I intend to pass out somewhere warm. It's been quite chilly at night recently.

Tomorrow, the library. Next week, the world! Wait, what?

Music: Here's looking at you kid - The Gaslight Anthem
Mood: Frustrated

Sunday, September 27, 2009

The word black is black, and blue is just blue

Oh dear god where has the weekend gone? And why did it have to do such damage to my savings account as it went? So not a productive time. Damn geekdom! You lead me into temptation! I have bought....I don't even know what. T-shirts. Books. Random fandom related stuff that will arrive here in the next few weeks and I will have no idea where to put them. I still have more shirts bookmarked for the coming weeks, and my Forbidden Planet shopping basket is still awaiting checkout as well. I balk at the pound, it must be said. I mean with the US dollar I lose little under a quarter, but the pound is double the worth of my puny earnings. Oh but how I love internet shopping. I look forward to being randomly surprised by packages over the coming weeks. I've given up on Amazon though, I'm still waiting on Roze's birthday present and that's been over a month as I didn't want to pay their extortionate express shipping fees. Besides, when it comes to books I can get most things from The Book Depository. Of course, when all else fails, there is always the wonderful world of eBay. Now that I have a debit card, it's beautifully angst free.

Still, I should be spending my time more productively. I definitely shouldn't spend hours watching Big Bang Theory, or watching reality tv, or getting into petty arguments with my father. So, tomorrow, there will be progress! I need to fix up my CV and print out a profile piece since I have to put in my Masters application on Tuesday. That'll be fun *woe face* Also, re-write. Then for the rest of the week....RESEARCH!!!

Maybe the capslock will convey the urgency of this situation to my apathetic self.

Music: Baby, it's a fact - Hellogoodbye
Mood: Guilty

I sense a disturbance in the force

Once upon a time, on my old blog, I did a huge post of Simpsons quotes. I am now going to do the same thing, except with Big Bang Theory quotes, and mostly Sheldon's at that. I inadvertently ended up having a marathon of the first season last night, and have endless appreciation for the absolute nerdish glee. Ergo, quotage.


Leonard: At least I didn't have to invent 26 dimensions just to make the math come out.
Sheldon: I didn't invent them, they are there!
Leonard: In what universe?
Sheldon: In all of them, that's the point.

Sheldon: Ah gravity, thou art a heartless bitch.

Sheldon: Excuse me, explain to me an organizational system where a tray of flatware on a couch is valid? Now, I'm just inferring that this is a couch, because the evidence suggests that the coffee table is having a tiny garage sale.

Sheldon: I think that you have as much of a chance of having a sexual relationship with Penny as the Hubble telescope does of discovering at the center of every black hole is a little man with a flashlight searching for a circuit breaker.

Leonard: I didn't like the look of the guy she was with.
Howard: Because he looks better than you?
Leonard: Yeah. He was kind of dreamy.
Sheldon: At least now you can retrieve the black box from the twisted smoldering wreckage that was once your fantasy of dating her and analyze the data so that you don't crash into geek mountain again.

Howard: Sheldon, if you were a robot, and I knew and you didn't, would you want me to tell you?
Sheldon: That depends. When I learn that I'm a robot, will I be able to handle it?
Howard: Maybe, although the history of science fiction is not on your side.
Sheldon: Uh, let me ask you this: when I learn that I'm a robot, would I be bound by Asimov's Three Laws of Robotics?
Raj: You might be bound by them right now.
Howard: That's true. Have you ever harmed a human being, or, through inaction, allowed a human being to come to harm?
Sheldon: Of course not.
Raj: Have you ever harmed yourself or allowed yourself to be harmed except in cases where a human being would've been endangered?
Sheldon: Well, no.
Howard: I smell robot.
Leonard (entering): What's going on around here?
Sheldon: Internet's been down for half an hour.
Raj: Also, Sheldon may be a robot.

Leonard: That's a good song!
Sheldon: If you're compiling a mix CD for a double suicide.

Sheldon: You know, I've been thinking about time travel again.
Leonard: Why? Did you hit a roadblock with invisibility?
Sheldon: Put it on the back burner. Anyway, it occurs to me, if I ever did perfect a time machine I'd go into the past and give it to myself. Thus eliminating the need for me to invent it in the first place.
Leonard: Interesting.
Sheldon: Yeah, it really takes the pressure off.

Sheldon: The last department party, Professor Finkleday cornered me and talked about spelunking for 45 minutes.
Leonard: Yes, I was there.
Sheldon: Do you know what's interesting about caves, Leonard?
Leonard: What?
Sheldon: Nothing.

Raj: What a spread. I love this country.
Leonard: Don't they have buffets in India?
Raj: Yes, but it's all Indian food. Try finding a bagel in Mumbai to save your life.

Mary: Leonard called me.
Sheldon: Again, why?
Leonard: Because one of the greatest minds of the Twenty-First Century is breeding glow-in-the-dark fish and weaving serapes.
Sheldon: This is a poncho! Serapes are closed, ponchos are open to the sides, this is a poncho! And neither is an excuse to call someone's mother.

Sheldon (to a knock on the door): Oh, what fresh hell is this?

Leonard: Penny, we make such a good team. Maybe we could enter a couple of "Halo" tournaments sometime.
Penny: Or we could just have a life.
Leonard: I guess for you, that's an option. Ha-ha. Ha.


Sheldon: Every Saturday since we have lived in this apartment, I've awakened at 6.15, poured myself a bowl of cereal, added a quarter cup of 2% milk, sat on this end of this couch, turned on BBC America and watched Doctor Who.
Leonard: Penny's still sleeping.
Sheldon: Every Saturday since we have lived in this apartment, I've awakened at 6.15, poured myself a bowl of cereal -
Leonard (interrupting): I know, I know. Look you have a TV in your room, why don't you just have breakfast in bed.
Sheldon: Because I am neither an invalid nor a woman celebrating mother's day.
Penny (waking up): Ugh what time is it?
Leonard: Almost 6.30
Penny: I slept all day?!
Leonard: Oh no, it's 6.30 in the morning.
Penny (going back to sleep): What the hell is your problem?
Sheldon: Ok this cereal has lost all its molecular integrity, I now have a bowl of shredded wheat paste.
Howard (entering): Ola nerdmigos.
Penny: Why do you people hate sleep?
Leonard: Penny, you're always welcome to stay with us.
Sheldon: Oh terrific, now we're running a cute little B&B.
Howard: Let me offer a little outside the box thinking here, why doesn't Kristy stay with me?
Leonard: For one thing, you live with your mother.
Howard: I do not! My mother lives with me.
Sheldon: Well then it's all settled. Kristy will stay with Howard, Penny can go back to her apartment, and I'll watch the last twenty four minutes of Doctor Who, although at this point it's more like Doctor Why Bother.
Leonard: Sheldon you can't just dictate -
Sheldon (interrupting): No more talking, everybody go!

Raj: Can we please make a decision? Not only are the children starving in India, there is an Indian starving right here!

Leonard: Okay, now do you really need the Honorary Justice League of America membership card?
Sheldon: It's been in every wallet I've owned since I was five.
Leonard: Why?
Sheldon: It says, "Keep this on your person at all times". It's right here under Batman's signature.

Leonard: What is this letter doing in the trash?
Sheldon: Well, it may be that a trashcan spontaneously formed around the letter, but Occam's Razor suggests that someone threw it away.

Penny: So you and Leonard, huh? A little misunderstanding?
Sheldon: A little misunderstanding? Galileo and the pope had a little misunderstanding!

Sheldon: Engineering, where the noble semi-skilled laborers execute the vision of those who think and dream. Hello, Ooompa-Loompas of science.

Sheldon: While Mr. Kim, by virtue of youth and naivete, has fallen prey to the inexplicable need for human contact, let me step in and assure you that my research will go on uninterrupted, and that social relationships will continue to baffle and repulse me.

Raj: We should laugh derisively at him whenever he walks by. Something that says "You may be smart and capable, but we are as smart and capable as you."
Leonard: And how exactly would that go?
Raj: He-he-he-he!
Howard: That sounds more like "We're a tall, thin woman who wants to make a coat out of your Dalmatian puppies."

Leonard: Who sells a time machine for 800 dollars?
Sheldon: In a Venn diagram, that would be an individual located at the intersection of the sets “no longer want my Time Machine” and “need 800 dollars”.

Penny: Sheldon, can I ask you a question?
Sheldon: Well I would prefer that you didn't but I won't go so far as to forbid it.
Penny: ...Okay, I heard 'yes'.

Penny: Has [Leonard] ever been involved with someone who wasn't a brainiac?
Sheldon: Oh, well, a few years ago, he did go out with someone who had a Ph.D. in French Literature.
Penny: How is that not a brainiac?
Sheldon: Well, for one thing, she was French. For another, it was literature

Howard: You know, I'm really glad you decided to learn Mandarin.
Sheldon: Why?
Howard: Once you're fluent, you'll have a billion more people to annoy instead of me.

Leonard: I don't think I can go out with [Penny] tonight.
Sheldon: Then don't.
Leonard: Other people would say, "Why not?"
Sheldon: Other people might be interested


Music: Northern Downpour - Panic At The Disco
Mood: Procrastinating

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Time is running out

I've been meaning to mention this but I keep getting distracted. Why are people so surprised/outraged by the artists the Twilight franchise manages to pull in for its soundtracks? I keep seeing complaints about "selling out" all over the place thanks to the high cred/indie status of the New Moon soundtrack. If you haven't seen it, it reads:

Death Cab For Cutie - Meet Me On The Equinox
Band Of Skulls - Friends
Thom Yorke - Hearing Damage
Lykke Li - Possibility
The Killers - A White Demon Love Song
Anya Marina - Satellite Heart
Muse - I Belong To You (New Moon Remix)
Bon Iver and St. Vincent - Rosyln
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club - Done All Wrong
Hurricane Bells - Monsters
Sea Wolf - The Violet Hour
Ok Go - Shooting The Moon
Grizzly Bear (Feat. Victoria Legrand) - Slow Life
Editors - No Sound But The Wind
Alexandre Desplat - New Moon (The Meadow)

This to me seems entirely natural, and I don't think the bands are selling out by lending their songs to the franchise either. The simple fact of the matter is, the franchise would never have existed without these artists/artists like them. I do not for one single minute believe 'Twilight' would read the same if Stephenie Meyer wasn't a huge Muse/Radiohead fan. Once you've made that connection, and looked at the playlists she posted while writing the books, you can clearly see the inspiration. Personally, that's something I've always loved about the franchise. I mean she even thanks the bands that have inspired her in the 'New Moon' acknowledgements. People think it's selling out for bands to allow their music to appear in these films? I think it's giving credit where credit is due.

Music: The Hollow Earth - Thom Yorke
Mood: Bored

Friday, September 25, 2009

You see things. You keep quiet about them. And you understand.

The last two days have passed in a flu-tinged blur. I alternated between sleeping the sleep of the dead and watching a lot of things I never got around to Mr & Mrs Smith, which I fear lacked a decent story and could have been oh so much better with a subtle few plot changes. I also watched Fight Club, so somewhere along the line it became Brad Pitt Thursday. There was a few episodes of Buffy somewhere between sleep and wakefulness as well, and Glee, which I'm not really sold on yet. It is very...strange. Awkward, and strange.

Feeling marginally better, I dragged myself off to work this morning but by 12, I was exhausted. It's that weariness that makes even breathing seem like too much work. Doesn't help that I've developed a cough. I have however retained consciousness and don't have the splitting headache of the past three days, so I managed to power through Stephen Chbosky's The perks of being a wallflower. I thought I was in love almost from the start of this book, it was just so fabulous. Emotive and well written, but above all so relatable, I just wanted to hug it and never let go. I didn't want to stop reading which is so nice compared to the stuff I've been struggling through lately - for uni or post-modern purposes, they've been the kind of books that feel like work, that require me to really concentrate and for whatever reason, I never feel fully immersed. Perks was the complete opposite of that and I immediately felt tied to the story, to Charlie, and oh-my-god how we're so very alike. I'm not really into the ending, I don't know. Maybe I'm used to stories that sort of meander, without real rhyme or reason. Perks easily draws comparison with Catcher in the rye (one of those books I love so completely but I don't even really know why), but there's never any real reason given for Holden being the way he was. He just was, and things ended the way they did because that's the way they ended (oh my eloquence, it blinds me!). For some reason, I felt the ending of Perks tried to add gravity where it wasn't needed, addressed an issue that may have been better left alluded to, instead of teased out and finalised the way it was. It's a beautifully told coming-of-age narrative all the same, but I often find the power lies in what we aren't implicitly told. That may just be me, I don't know. Regardless, the first 100 pages is some of the most perfect affective introspective narrative I've read in a very long while.

Just reading the note on the author, I see Stephen Chbosky helped create and produce Jericho, one of my favourite television shows. Never would have picked that.

My dad has arrived home from Afrique Du Sud, bearing various trinkets from various well meaning relatives. He's complaining about the dust everywhere, but seeing as he wasn't here to witness the full extent of the madness, he can't really appreciate the consequences. We've been told to expect another dust storm tomorrow, and from the footage from rural NSW, it looks like it's going to be almost as bad as the first one. Therefore I wisely didn't wash my car, although I did have to hose it down this morning in order to see out the windshield. It really is gross though, everything is caked with red sand. If I wanted to deal with this sort of thing, I would have lived in the Outback. Bah.

I'm actually hungry for the first time in days, so I think I better act on this while the feeling lasts.

We, soldiers of a different sort,
We, wasters of ink and page,
We, warriors of words,
Masters of melancholy,
harlots of the pen,
We bleed these volumes,
and expect only absolution.

[ Jarvis Black ]

Music: Asleep - The Smiths
Mood: Tired

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Fightin' in a basement offers a lot of difficulties

This morning I woke to the apocalypse. At first I thought the red glow tinging the upstairs landing was a fever induced hallucination, but as I stumbled back to bed after consuming about half a gallon of water, I stopped to have a peek outside and realise that no, definitely the apocalypse.


As it turns out, Sydney was graced with the worst dust storm in the city's history. The worst comparable event of this kind happened in Melbourne in '83. The news just said kilotonnes of topsoil has been dumped over the city. Everything is covered in dust, it looks like the cars have just returned from a drive in the Outback. It was so bad this morning that you could taste the dust in the air, I didn't even venture outside but it was enough to permeate into the living room.


This tops a day of insane weather, which started with 32 degree morning, epic thunderstorm in the evening, heavy winds, and finally, red dawn. It's very impressive, if completely chaos inducing. There were health warnings issued for respiratory concerns. Public transport, traffic, and such has obviously come to a stand-still. Flights were diverted and grounded as well, I can't even imagine how those planes must look. Actually, there's money to be made here in offering a local car wash *ponders* I regret not taking my own pictures but I was simply too spaced out to even think about it, I feel a thousand times worse than yesterday and so I've spent the day drugged and comatose in turns. It's not much fun.

Here be more pics, news coverage here.

Yesterday was such a gorgeous morning so it was lovely to meet Mandy in a cafe in the park and discuss my uni work. Makes a nice change from being inside a stuffy office at uni, that's for sure. She brought her dog along and it was soooo cute. So yes, that was a lovely little outing. She gave me some good advice as well. I suppose you have to keep working if you want to improve. I had some time before meeting Em and Roze, so I thought I'd pop into a Telstra shop to see if they could fix Jasper. This turned out to be a bit of a mistake. The first shop gave me a heart attack by informing me they no longer stocked those phones and no longer offered my plan (even though the internet still offers it? Um, FAIL Telstra.) I refused to accept this and wandered down to the bigger store, where a query into repairing Jasper led to the purchase of an entirely new phone *headdesk* Turns out they are discontinuing the plan and no longer stock the hiptops, but they had one left, so I had to take it while I still had the chance. So, may I introduce my wholly unintentional, if so far quite pleasing, upgrade:


I debated over the name for quite some time but finally settled on Donna...cause she's red, see? She's got a few extra trimmings to Jasper, and is also thinner and lighter. She also doesn't have the weird side panels that will snap off. So yes, she has to last me a very long time, so I better look after her.

Following this unexpected drama, I was late to the movies, so I missed the start to Inglourious Basterds but I doubt I missed anything important. I think Em and I are a bit too squeamish to watch Tarantino movies in public. It's ok to squeal and hide under blankets on Roze's couch, but fellow cinema goers don't really appreciate it as much. It's very intense and quite long, but a good movie overall. Some great one-liners. I do think it lacks moral attitude, but it is Tarantino, so I suppose that's irrelevant. Also, Eli Roth looks fantastic in a tux. Following dinner, we all went our separate ways just in time to be caught in the rain. I got completely soaked walking to my car and was tempted to sit in the rain and cry. That's the kind of flu I have at the moment, the kind that just makes you want to cry.

I best go find something to eat. Followed by yet more drugs. And possibly more sleep. So much time being wasted! Sigh.

Music: NCIS
Mood: Sick

Monday, September 21, 2009

Weathervanes my one and lonely

You know, I would love to get a Blackberry for my next phone, but I really don't seem to have any other choice but to persevere with the Sidekicks. I get a $30 plan from Telstra that inludes unlimited web browsing, email, msn/yahoo messenger, sms and mms. So pretty much I just pay for my calls and since the only person I really ever ring is my mum, who is my nominated Telstra number and thus the first three minutes are free, I virtually pay nothing extra above phone repayment. This is the only really decent "internet" plan available in this country. Most of the others want to charge me $2.05 per MB. Per megabyte. Now I just had a look at my last bill and I rack up about 60GB on Jasper in a billing period. That's my problem with cap plans as well, my internet and sms use is just too high to justify something like that. I am an extremely unbalanced user. I mean, I could probably tone it down, but I don't really want to. I like Jasper being connected all the time. And sure the Sidekick3 leaves a lot to be desired - the lack of applications being the most grating at the moment - but it's served me well these past few years...ignoring the part where it fell apart and became Terminator phone. Not strictly Jasper's fault. I'm just annoyed that they're no longer Sharp handsets, but Motorola. Motorola and I do not have a good working relationship. It's also a slide screen and no longer the flip one I'm so fond of. But c'est la vie, what can one do.

On that French note, I'm considering starting a French class next month. It goes for 6 weeks and is quite affordable in the greater scheme of things. It also sounds like a lot of fun. Thing is, I don't know if I can really justify extra-caricular activities during Thesis Time. Bah.

Speaking of, bunch of internships I need to apply for, including a production assistant that includes a two week stint in Japan. It may be unpaid, but duuuudes, travel! That would be very cool. Doubt I'd get it, but no harm in applying.

For the first time ever I have actually reached my Wii Fit goal, and two weeks before the date I'd set myself. This prompted the Wii Fit to ask after my health, stating it was worried my quick progress is hazardous. It's so cute! Haha. I'm actually very impressed with myself. Yet again goes to prove that I am a mad woman when I put my mind to something. Onwards!

Tomorrow I must meet my supervisor somewhere in Kings Cross which I fail at navigating, so I should probably look that up. It will be followed by movies with the girls - Inglourious Basterds, finally.

I'm not going to lie, today was a very trying exhausting passage of time, greater majority of which I struggled to remain on my chair and felt quite ill. But, I still made a list of things I love, so:
I love the humid mornings
I love my friends
I love my parents being independent and the break this gives us all
I love connecting with people over the most random things
I love how Abbi and I can't write anything without name-dropping Spacemonkey in some way
I love the promise of summer

Music: Northern downpour - Panic at the Disco
Mood: Sick

Sunday, September 20, 2009

One song, about a girl

Is it just me, or is anyone else in Sydney really hot right now? I don't think it's actually that warm. Hope I'm not getting sick. Bah.

I am completely flabbergasted that dearest William Beckett has recently revealed he has a child. For once, the crazy rumours way back when were actually on the money. That never happens! It alone makes it worth mentioning. The only reason I felt the need to blog about this is because, well, it's William! What am I meant to do? The boy has the power to turn me into brainless goo with his voice, hmmmk, it deserves some mention that this is being passed on to future generations. Also, she bears the same name I chose in Year 6 when we were discussing it in class and I was going through my Arthurian legend stage - Guinevere became Genevieve. If we consider all the offspring appearing all over the place, it's fair to say that somewhere there will be one hell of a playgroup one day.

The strange thing is that I've been a TAI fan for, oh must be 5 years now, and he was only 19 at the time. It's easy to get caught in this bubble where people seem to stay exactly the same as the first time you came across them (like Em's brother, who I constantly assume to be barely in high school, despite the fact that eight years have passed.) Discounting that fact, intellectually I know William is 2 years older than me. Which makes him 24. If we add this to all the other public figures I admire getting hitched, engaged or spawning, let alone to the number of friends and relatives doing the same thing, and I'm beginning to feel old. Not in the age sense strictly speaking, more in the responsibility sense. It's not a sensation I enjoy very much. I have reached the point in my life where this sort of thing is totally normal and acceptable (even expected) and I'm still sitting here going "But, but, but I'm too young! There's a half-price movie on down the road, and we can all get some slushies and go ice-skating after!"

I don't consider myself immature. I've always been very responsible, very self-aware, and I grew up a lot faster than perhaps I should have. I spent a lot of time in the adult setting, and I learnt to adapt. It's true that completing the latter part of my education here in Australia did allow me to regress to a more childish level than I necessarily would have been if I'd remained in Joburg. I've just always thought the nature of the city never really agreed with naivete or romanticism much, whereas here I've had a lot more freedom in being childish. That said, the idea that I'm at an age where settling down is not necessarily a foreign concept freaks the hell out of me. When I am asked at work whether I have kids and I respond that I'm too young, I'm met with a "No you're not, not really" and I can't even really deny it, can I? It's that classic question, when did this happen? When did we become responsible adults? When did everyone around us start pairing off and making life plans, and when did the younger generation move in and bring their own heroes with them, heroes younger than we are now?

It's weird. And ok, I know this sounds ridiculous, but that whole idea of "settling down" threatens a whole lot of "losing your independence" to me, and that is partly why I am absolutely terrified of commitment, something that is apparently getting more and more daunting, and an inescapable fact, the older I get.

I'm not even 22 too yet! I'm too young to be having a mid-life crisis!

Music: Nothing, I SHOULD be sleeping
Mood: Hot

This was a therapeutic chain of events

Reading the paper this morning, the retro section informed me that on 18 September 1988, the song sitting comfortably in third position on the national charts was 'Doctorin' the tardis' by The Timelords. Understandably, I found this utterly hilarious.

I'd like to do something which I thought of when I first heard Green Day's '21 guns' but never got around to. Observe. Lyrics to said song:
Your faith walks on broken glass
And the hangover doesn't pass
Nothing's ever built to last
You're in ruins

Some of you may remember:

I see what you did there Billie! [Side note, can I just point out how utterly gorgeous he looks in the '21 Guns' video? Sigh.]

Life's been fairly uneventful and sadly unproductive. It's a worry but I am struggling to maintain any real care factor. It's been a serious problem of mine since July. But in the words of Panic! At The Disco, it sure as hell ain't normal but we deal. Friday I went to the fair trading commission with mum since dad's overseas. That was way more entertaining than I would ever have expected. They usher into a seminar room with everyone else scheduled during that time, and then there is an "airing of grievances" as the cases are presented. The case that was on first was a cross between Jerry Springer and Judge Judy and I was riveted by the spectacle. The judge/registrar/commissioner/whatever-dude-in-charge was so witty and inadvertently amusing, I felt like cheering for him. I could happily have stayed there for quite some time just observing the train wrecks. However, we were wasting our time since the dude challenging us never showed up so the case was dismissed. It's frustrating, no matter how enjoyable I may have found the outing, I still have better things to do with my time you know. Bah. Hopefully it's the end of that whole debacle though.

Last night I ventured out with Roze and friends to see Wicked. It was quite impressive. My inner musical theatre geek was totally into it and it was nice to go out and be social somewhere that wasn't the library. It was just overall a really lovely, enjoyable night.

Mum and I took Oreo to the beach today, a well timed bout of relaxation just before epic storm clouds rolled in. I have sort of wasted the day sleeping though. I need more time! No, actually, I need my uni work to do itself. That would certainly solve a lot of problems.

Music: Camisado - Panic! At The Disco
Mood: Lazy

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The sun exposes all my demons

Currently on phone to Telstra trying to get my dad's International Roaming set up as he is en route to South Africa. He wasn't going to go but the minute he mentioned it at work, they bundled him off and got everything organised. The good thing about working for Qantas is that, in a situation like this, you really can't be in a better position, it's an immediate sponsored boarding pass. I am actually quite glad my grandparents were visiting family in Hermanus at the time, at least the Western Cape health service instills a little more faith than Ermelo, the hell hole they actually live in. Here you can see it's in the middle of bloody nowhere.

Anywho, I'm really itching to go shopping. I should finish my re-write so I can start the exegsis of DOOM and really it is the spending of cash I don't actually have. But seriously, with all these vouchers I've been accumulating I could get those Levis I've been eyeing for $70. Bargain! Plus I really want another pair of heels.

I think "I'm yours tonight" has to be one of the most sickeningly sweet songs The Academy Is have ever done -
Even in your dreams, I’ll pull the stars down from the heavens to fill your empty skies.
I’m yours tonight.
All together now, d'aaaawwww.

Music: I'm yours tonight - The Academy Is
Mood: Hungry

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


This year goes from bad to worse with every fucking month. My paternal grandfather had a light heart attack this morning and is in ICU. The idiots I claim as relatives on my dad's side of the family didn't want to let us know but my only aunt with any common sense or decency called anyway. I cannot believe these fuckwits wanted to keep this from us, just because we're halfway around the world doesn't mean we aren't entitled to know these things. It's not like we're going to jump on the first plane or do anything rash, we are responsible adults capable of making decision, we should be allowed the opportunity to make these decisions. I know it's my dad's oldest sister being the idiot here and I am this close to calling her and giving her a piece of my mind. The controlling bitch, I swear. My dad always rings his father on Thursday mornings so can you imagine if he rang tomorrow and didn't get any answer, only to be lied to if he asked his sister? Or what if the worst happened and my granddad passed away, how do they think we'd feel if they kept this from us?

I am majorly fucking pissed off. At least I have one sane family member on that side of the divide.

Music: Torch song - AFI
Mood: Pissed off

We are nothing if not productive


At this very moment in time, Roze is trying to get me to join Farmville on Facebook in what I can only assume will be another of our classic wars of attrition. Withstanding bombardment via twitter, facebook, email, and actual sms even though she is sitting right next to me. But I won't give in! Cue trumpets.

Music: Roze's supressed giggles
Mood: Um...working?

Some rules are made with all intention to break

And she defends it with a warped rationale

Sitting in the State library with Miss Roze at my side. We've just returned from a quick lunch and now I must muster up the will to continue working, which clearly isn't going too well. There is a man on Roze's other side picking his nose like the world is ending. It is a gross display that has to be seen to be believed.I'm getting odd looks from the girl in front of me, I think because my typing is annoying her. Well...tough. I'm here to write and therefore I need this wonderful machine. Take it up with scientists, if they could invent something to hook up to my brain, it would save us all a lot of grief.But I digress.

I don't think this re-write of my creative piece is working. If it is the father that dies now, rather than in the past, it completely changes not only my protagonist's motivations but all the events that have shaped her into the character she is. A lot of things wouldn't have happened, her mother's character wouldn't be the same, and I don't know if I can merely gloss over these deeper concerns with superficial changes to the written story itself. She would sound different, be different, react differently. I don't really feel I have enough time to flesh out a whole new character and tacking a different story on existing characters just because they're already there and ready to go feels cheap. So yes, I'm feeling decidedly uncomfortable in proceeding with this re-write. I'll give it a shot I suppose, see what others think, but I doubt it's working.

Music: Jesse Lacey singing in my head, which is quite nice
Mood: Working

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Some hearts are gallows

What's the point of a soul when all I'm being is a faulty copy of myself?

[Pic from here]

For the eyeing of my scars, there is a charge
For the hearing of my heart--
It really goes.

And there is a charge, a very large charge
For a word or a touch
Or a bit of blood

Missing a key element in my means to function. All the dominoes threaten to topple quietly now. Mesmerising, sad display of beautiful destruction on a minimal scale. We build only to tear down. It has nothing to do with looking beyond borders, it goes no further than myself. In this bubble of my own construction it's only about what I want, what I need, what I believe. A little selfishness is healthy every now and then, even if it stays in the confines of my mind. This is the iGeneration though and more and more we're fenced in by our ourselves. "If it doesn't touch me, why should I care?" So doomed, seemingly forever, to repeat mistakes of the past. It's all about relating, about feeling close enough to the matter at hand for it to have gravity, meaning specifically for you. But here we stray, yet again off topic. The threads of my composure are fraying a little more with each passing hour. Responsibilities clawing at the door. "Mustn't let the monsters in." So grab the holy water and the crucifixes, be sure to take the baseball bat too just for good measure, let's venture out instead. There shall be no crawling under desks, cowering in closets, hiding in the dark places, waiting out the night. We are the children of darkness, and we aren't afraid of ghosts. I may not come back whole, I may not be unscathed, but my fate will have been entirely my own. Foolish and rash, born on the impulse of unrefined thoughts, it's true, but these dominoes are toppling, I may as well preempt disaster and be the cause.

Music: We're getting a divorce, you keep the dinner - The Gaslight Anthem
Mood: Moody

Here follows nothing of consequence

I read this back before posting it and it's just a giant ramble of inconsequential nothing. Move along, nothing to see here.


One of the blogs I read did a VMA write up on the Kanye debacle, and there is the following comment - "This is why the taliban hates us!" For some inexplicable reason I found that utterly hilarious and am tempted to exclaim best. comment. ever. Even though, you know, it's not really funny. But hey, if the taliban does hate the US for Kanye, well I can't say I blame them. Perhaps that would be a better way to recruit people to their cause.

To weigh in on the debacle, just how is 'Single ladies (put a ring on it)' one of the best video of all time? How? It is nothing special, and besides, the song annoys me. I haven't seen Taylor Swift's video, so I suppose I can't really comment, but it can't be less impressive than 'Single ladies'. Surely. It's kind of funny that they're going on about it being the best video of all time when they were doing all those Michael Jackson tributes. Say what you want about Michael, his videos were amazing. I love a good theatrical video, it's why I like most of 30STM's videos too. Especially if Jared Leto is taking his shirt off...wait, what? Sigh. Such a waste, that one.

Of course some people want to make whole thing into a metaphorical race riot. FFS people, chillax. It's the MTV video music awards, it's hardly an Oscar. Besides, I can't even remember the last time I saw an actual video on MTV anyway.

When are we going to have the YouTube awards? Now that would be interesting. "And the award for most illegally recorded and watched Television Show goes to...." Just think of the categories - best animal related video, best idiotic stunt, the 5 minutes of fame award, the vlogger of the year, best comment, music video most removed by record company, video most replaced after removal by record company, best incident involving fire, best cartoon, best fan video, best recording of a live performance. Voted by the people, for the people! Your internet browser has spoken.

On this topic, saw the New Moon trailer, and while I concede it looks rather cool - the wolves, the Volturi, whatevs - it doesn't look like the acting has improved at all. Why do they have to stand around acting all intense and lacking facial expressions? Also, I really wish Edward wasn't so awkwardly stalkerish. I always pictured him as a perhaps serious but only because he's old fashioned guy with a sense of humour and certain spark for life. Movie Edward has none of that. They should take some lessons from True Blood who hit all the marks I fear they fail at.

Vampires led me to a blog post on hot vampires (which I fundamentally disagree with when it comes to Cedric, see: previous posts ad nauseum) and someone decreeing Lestat an ass and levelling much hate at him. Ok, so he is a bit of an ass, but he's also a fabulous character. I think those that don't know him past Interview with the Vampire really sell him short (I'm talking about the books btw, I haven't seen the other film(s?) after IWTV). I mean yes Louis is a tragic poetic soul, and I love him too, but Lestat has got so many layers he doesn't even know whether he's coming or going. He shifts between what he wants and what he believes, but he goes for it one hundred percent. Yes he's bad ass and vain and narcissistic, but that isn't all he is. It's fantastic, and to my mind, utterly believable. Plus he's completely fucked up, and sadly that is the way I prefer my characters. Point is, cut the guy some slack, if you can force yourself to get through 'The Vampire Lestat' so you can get on to 'Queen of the Damned', you'll see what I mean.

Anyway, who cares when you can get a Harry Potter wand as a remote control that works by recognising the flick of your wrist! Lookit! Haha epic nerd glee. Next stop - teleportation. Don't make me poke you with this newly acquired remote wand *narrows eyes*

Vampires, the supernatural...did I ever mention that I adored the end of Being Human? I was a bit iffy on it in the beginning but it really pulled together in the last three eps, of course it would only be 8 episodes long *rolls eyes*

As you can probably tell, I have nothing valuable to contribute. All the plans for the day were rescheduled and instead I spent most of the afternoon getting better acquainted with the Wii Fit again. Tomorrow, library. It seems to be the only place I am largely productive. We do what we must.

Had the most bizarre dream last night in which Larry from Numb3rs was proving a theory that I was much too busy with research to do homework. The professors he was pitching to were unimpressed and insisted I do said homework. But hey, at least Larry was on my side!

Music: Something - The Beatles
Mood: Faintly annoyed

Monday, September 14, 2009

Stuck in reverse

Tears stream down your face,
When you lose something you cannot replace

Yes, I am quoting Coldplay, so you know I've reached a dire point in my evening.

So busy today at work today and yet so bored that counting staples would have seemed like quality entertainment. I didn't even have any external entertainment. Instead there was an abundance of VMA tweets to keep me occupied and they were not particularly interesting. Yes, Kanye's a dick, tell me something I didn't know. With his ego, I'm amazed there's room on this planet for the rest of humanity. Still, I really couldn't care less about the VMAs. Awards shows are only entertaining if Hugh Jackman is singing in them, there are proper dresses, and I have company, preferably in the form of Em. The only music award show I've ever enjoyed was by watching it with her via sms. Much like the only time I've ever watched Seventh Heaven was when they had a marathon on during my school holidays and Roze and I watched it, calling each other in the ad breaks to discuss it. It doesn't sound like much, but hey we were like 15, it was fun. Mad but fun.

Meanwhile, in the real world, I've put the entire family on diet and I've being militant about it. I never used to worry about it, but it would appear as I get older I no longer have the metabolism of a ravenous locust and so I really shouldn't continue eating like one. I will not tolerate this kind of crap and since it can't hurt anyone, I've made it a household thing. Even Oreo is included. The sane rational part of my brain sits back and watches the spectacle with disapproving tuts. You should see me, going into suspicious Nazi mode when I find my dad with one hand in the pantry like some sort of Pink Panther-esque jewel thief. But dammit, it's for the greater good. Besides I'm tired of feeling like the blob, damnable winter. Say what you want about me, but when I commit to something, I don't do it halfway.

My meeting with Mandy has been moved to next week, so have to finish the re-write by at least Friday. Get that all sent off and start on my research. I'm still going to the movies with Em and Roze tomorrow. Followed by more movies Wednesday, and possibly Thursday. I don't know when exactly Honours research became synonymous with cinema, but hey, whatever. Oh and on Saturday there's Wicked.

Speaking of honours, got an invite today to join some or other Honours society. I think I might since they offer scholarships which would be a definite plus if I wish to study overseas. I'm so antsy about all this Masters stuff. Will I get in, do I have to pay, does the government pay, do I really need a portfolio, blah blah shut up already and just let me study.

Finally, I am so broke it's not even faintly amusing. Wonder if I could sell a kidney on the black market...

Music: Fix you - Coldplay
Mood: Teeny tiny bit emo

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Rule number 1: Not everything is about you

A blog in which I:
- rant about things seen in the paper
- outline the things I wish to attend
- yet again lament the revoking of my Idol blogging rights

First things first, Caster Semenya. Could they have made more of a mess out of this situation? To be honest I have no idea how the Athletics Federation are going to handle it but I hope they give it due thought and consideration, and that it doesn't just become some sort of running joke. I can appreciate the complication of the situation but at the same time it hardly seems fair that she should be penalized for merely being herself. That identity may not be one that is conventionally laid down by society, but who are they rule on what is normal or what is conventional? If a person identifies in a certain way, that should be a valid expression regardless of supposed norms. The way the article in the Sunday Telegraph started today summed up the whole messed up situation and really set my teeth on edge. It reads: "It was simple enough for [her] rivals at the recent world championships in Berlin. As far as they were concerned, she looked like a man and ran like a man. She was a cheat, and should be barred." But she identifies as female. What would they have her do, compete with the men where she would no doubt feel extremely uncomfortable? Or not run at all, despite the fact that she has a talent and passion for the sport. Should she just fade into the background, someone no one talks about? She has an unfair advantage competing with the women, but she wouldn't exactly fit in with the men either. Her genetic make-up means she doesn't fit the nice boxes society have drawn up in the past and yet, considering that she is not the only one to defy such characterisation, no one ever asks whether modes classification are perhaps the issue here.

Society insists on forcing people to define themselves and place themselves within neat boundaries as ruled down eons ago but whatever person decided to be the voice of reason on the matter of general expectations. Yet we are constantly told that every person is unique. So, the general consensus seems to be it's fine to be unique and different as long as it falls within the parameters of what we're comfortable with. It's archaic. I realise there aren't any easy answers here, I'm not stupid, I just think this whole situation has not been handled very well. I also just wish people weren't so hung up on sticking neat little tags on everything. How bad is this for her, she thinks she's following her dream to compete at an international level and then wins which is no doubt a happy moment for her, only to be dragged into this huge public scene. I noted somewhere that they're blaming the South African Authorities for not picking up on this but clearly these people have no idea what it's like over there. Granted I haven't lived in the country for a while, but I've often found a disturbing ignorance when it comes to certain things. Beyond that, it's been my unfortunate luck to find myself in situations where people can be oppressively misinformed and narrow-minded. I wouldn't want to make a sweeping generalisation about the country, but I am perfectly comfortable in stating its bureaucratic bodies to be ineffectual and incompetent at best. So I have nothing for sympathy for Caster Semenya who has been failed on so many levels and has been forced to go through all this in public. All at 18 years of age. It's madness.

Next up, things I wish to attend. Well, A streetcar named desire at the Sydney Theatre Company mostly. Aaaand I just realised its booked out. Dammit! It's gotten such stellar reviews too. Cate Blanchett FTW. Avenue Q has extended its Sydney run so if anyone wants to go to that, it's cheap on Tuesdays. I want to go to so many gigs I didn't even know was happening. This is what happens when I don't have the internet for a while, I fall completely behind. It's painful since I have no means to feed the desperate gig demon. Tickets for The Used go on sale tomorrow, I just hope there are still some available when I get home for my lunch break. Fingers crossed. Then there's Paolo Nutini, The Offspring, Them Crooked Vultures among many others...and that's not even mentioning Soundwave. Sheesh.

Last point, Australian Idol. I honestly cannot tell you why I feel compelled to watch this show. It is...bland at best, and yet, there I sit. Two or three (it was the year The Black Parade was released) Idols ago, they set up an interactive website for viewers to get involved in. They had an anonymous blogger, supposedly a famed individual within the festival industry, on this site who did the most hilarious, sarcastic write-ups of each performance show. I loved his posts and joined up so I could read/respond. Of course I was unable to resist the lure of another place I could ramble extensively and I started blogging there, making my own observations about the show and offering idiotic advice. I was pretty much consistently the highest rating blogger on that site and exchanged messages with previously mentioned anonymous blogger and the editor of the website. The latter was mostly because of my relentless scathing commentary on the functionality of the website. I didn't actually care all that much about Idol but I had so much fun blogging about it and angering people that I couldn't wait to do it again the next year. As I scrambled onto the site in '07 I realised that they had removed the blogging function from the site. Now secretly, I've always been convinced that this was because of me (if my ego is obstructing your view of the screen just jab it with a pen.) Every year and every performance show since I sit there and moan to my mother that they "took my blog away!"

So yeah, I think I keep watching this show out of habit and nostalgia. I am greatly concerned by the amount of people who keep coming back year after year and are now actually being put through where they were originally rejected. Could it be that the country is running out of talent? I'm fairly convinced the show is on its last legs. We've already gotten rid of Big Brother (thank god) so what's another reality show. Can I just say that you know your bands gone beyond mainstream if it makes it to Idol. Tonight we had Paramore and Fall Out Boy. I have a soft spot for the kid we call Thorpy since my mother decided he looks like Ian Thorpe, he reminds me of every theatre geek kid I've always wanted to be friends with and the first time I saw him perform he nailed 'We are the champions' with jaw dropping magnificence. If you can do Freddie justice, I generally find it quite hard not to appreciate your skills. On the requisite bitchy note...does Ricki Lee not have a stylist?

If you made it this far, well done. Pardon my vastly different subject matters and my lack of smooth transition between them.

Music: There is life outside your apartment - Avenue Q Broadway Cast
Mood: Exhausted

It's that time again

Namely the time when I am far too easily amused

Haha WIN. I always thought Muse and Doctor Who go well together - both favour space, and there’s always been something about David Tennant that reminded me of Matt Bellamy. Must be the lankiness. I'm in love with both entities as well as both individuals. David has the benefit of being quite dorky at times (Ye olde camera crew) and having an adorable accent, but Matt and his piano are indescribably awesome. So yes.

Back to work?


More Who over here.

Music: Uprising - Muse
Mood: Silly

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Cause new heartbreak to write a new broken song

Whoa, I just had a thought. In today's day and age, where we're constantly hooked up to some device or another and have more means to express our every thought and miniscule detail of our lives, any tweet could essentially be recorded as your last words.

The thought struck as I'm reading a bunch of online news articles about recent celebrity deaths as part of research for my creative piece, and there is one about DJ AM that actually ends with "He last posted a message on Twitter..." and goes on to quote it. It just got me thinking that with Twitter being as prolific as it is, this would probably be the norm from now on, and isn't that a bit strange?

Twitter is so instantaneous that it loses relevance quite quickly, it's a kneejerk reaction to the world around you, a quick impression of your life and its effect on the world. It's imprint on the beach, the kind below the tide that quickly sinks away again. To think that any tweet could be your last, that any inane observation could be taken out of that rapidfire world to be quoted (and kept) as a record of your last words of sorts...that's sort of mind-boggling. I'm tempted to say "Make every tweet count!" but that would defy the point of twitter really. I mean, if I had to be poignant and thoughtful all the time, I would never tweet. I just want to say "om nom brownies" or tell someone about the dog on the corner doing handstands. That said, I'm not famous, so I doubt anyone would really bother quoting Twitter as my last words.

Still an interesting thought though.

Music: You wouldn't like me - Tegan & Sara
Mood: Working

Old age is just around the bend

With a little luck, I will be accepted to do my Masters degree at UTS next year. It's a two year full time course. In the final semester of the degree, should I be approved again with a little luck, I can go on exchange. I can select up to five countries when I submit my proposal so, as uni-inspired procrastination, I'm looking at the partnership universities on offer.

> United Kingdom: Loughborough University, Manchester Metropolitan University, University for the Creative Arts.
> Ireland: Dublin City University
> France: Université Paris Dauphine
> Canada: University of Ottowa
> US: Oh there's so many here, including the University of Hawaii. People study in Hawaii? But it's holiday central! Where does the motivation come from? I'm not going to lie, my main motivation in this is to study in Europe so these are merely making up numbers.

There are also a few universities in Switzerland, Germany and one in Italy, but god knows I'd have to take language classes since it's been years and my skills are rusty. I could always go to Amsterdam, at least I can understand them. I could get a bike and be one of the suicidial riders instead of dodging them... *ponders*

Either way, all this is inducing some major woe on my part as I'm now thoroughly convinced that I will fail Honours and thereby won't be accepted into Masters, ruining whatever little plans I had for my future. I could live with not being accepted for exchange even though I've always wanted to study abroad, but I could not live with not being able to study further. I have nothing else *breathes into paper bag*

To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day
To the last syllable of recorded time,
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

[Macbeth, Act 5.5]

-- Edit 9:05: I've just discovered Macquarie offers a 1 year Master of Arts in English Literature. Would it be terribly stupid of me to do two Masters degrees? I want both! Ugh. The government are going to take out a restraining order against me, "Stop studying! You're bankrupting the country!"

Music: The sound of settling - Death Cab for Cutie
Mood: Confused

All hope abandon ye who enter here

I've signed up to Tumblr to see if I can get a better feel of wtf that's all about. It gives me a lot of flexibility in terms of posting things that catch my eye as opposed to saving it and having it languish on my laptop for the rest of eternity. So yes, I'll probably be using it for such purposes.

The rugby's on and I'm not watching as I just have too much work to do. I can't say I'm too impressed by this development.

Today's been so unproductive I want to shoot myself. Sigh. Also had the worst headache all day. Brief spat with parental unit as I feel utterly at sea here. I'm too over everything to be eloquent about it.

Life goes on.

Music: Naveskin Banks - The Gaslight Anthem
Mood: Tired

This is not war, this is pest control

Glancing about my various overflowing "My Pictures" files, I spotted this and thought it was a gentle way to start a day full of editing (and tears of frustration no doubt).

original by agent57

Music: My neighbour mowing the lawn
Mood: Grumpy

Friday, September 11, 2009

Listen to music and see faces in its fires

I will not read your script:

It rarely takes more than a page to recognize that you're in the presence of someone who can write, but it only takes a sentence to know you're dealing with someone who can't. (By the way, here's a simple way to find out if you're a writer. If you disagree with that statement, you're not a writer. Because, you see, writers are also readers.)

QFT. Also,

To make matters worse, this guy (and his girlfriend) had begged me to be honest with him. He was frustrated by the responses he'd gotten from friends, because he felt they were going easy on him, and he wanted real criticism. They never do, of course. What they want is a few tough notes to give the illusion of honesty, and then some pats on the head.

One of the few things I've learnt at uni is to deal with criticism (and to not argue with it.) You have to really listen and take it on board. You can still ignore it of course, but it's important to at least consider it because usually the things you love the most about something is the thing that doesn't work all that well. It's probably the hardest part of the writing process though. If you ask for feedback, you have to be willing to take it and you cannot take it personally. You may have poured your heart and soul into something and love it dearly, but you can't let that predetermine your response. If you are defensive, you can't learn. I was super defensive about a particular bit in an Amped script once but when I started the re-write and thought about it, I took it out. I may love it but that doesn't change the fact that it doesn't actually work well with what we're trying to say. I never finished that re-write, but I will some day (December dammit!)

What I'm trying to say is, I've reached the point where I want criticism, you can keep the pats on the head. I don't care about that anymore. I've worked with a number of published professionals now and I generally feel confident enough in my writing. What I want is to get better, and I can only get better if there's criticism. As they say in Almost Famous, be honest and unmerciful. As the previously linked post notes, it's the kinder thing to do for the long run.

On the topic of things that I love, I'm still listening to The Gaslight Anthem. I'm giving 'I'da called you woody, Joe' a lot of air time mostly because it captures perfectly the way I felt the first time I heard The Clash too. I've never really been able to articulate what it meant when I found punk, not without sounding idiotic, and now I no longer have to try, the song has captured the feeling perfectly.

As heard by my wild young heart, like directions on a cold dark night,
Saying "Let it out, let it out, let it out, you're doin' all right."

God I love music. It seems to have the ability to capture feeling in a way no other medium can. I've often wondered whether my love of music didn't merely stem from my obsession with words. I listen to a lot of things that aren't particularly melodic or innovative, but that has stunning lyrics that I can't resist. This train of thought clashes with my love of punk though, where generally wordplay and poetics are discarded in favour of simply being loud and/or angry. Then there's classical music, and my obsession with the piano. In the end I can't help but think music transcends some sort of barrier that contains other forms of expression. Maybe it's just because melody can't really be tied down in words, caught and examined and explained, not really. By going against traditional form of interpretation so it resists translation into referential meaning. Critics try, of course, but it's such a subjective thing, it almost comes across as cupping water in your hands. Words can be twisted, taken out of context, and misinterpreted. Music just is.

I'm afraid I'm going to have to pull out some long Nick Hornby quotes now:

It is, perhaps, the curse of the trade. 'All art constantly aspires towards the conditions of music,' Walter Pater said, in one of the only lines of criticism that has ever meant anything to me (if I could write music, I'd never have bothered with books); music is such a pure form of self-expression, and lyrics, because they consist of words, are so impure, and songwriters, even great ones like [Aimee] Mann, find that, even though they can produce both, words will always let you down. One half of her art is aspiring towards the condition of the other half, and that must be weird, to feel so divinely inspired and so fallibly human, all at the same time. Maybe it's only songwriters who have ever had any inkling what Jesus felt on a bad day.
[Chapter 11: So I'll Run, 31 Songs, p.58]

Music, like a colour, or a cloud, is neither intelligent nor unintelligent - it just is. The chord, the simplest building block for even the tritest, silliest chart song, is a beautiful, perfect, mysterious thing, and when an ill-read, uneducated, uncultured and emotionally illiterate boor puts a couple of them together, he has every chance of creating something wonderful and powerful. I don't want to read inane books, but books are built from words, our only instruments of thought; all I ask of music is that it sounds good [and makes me feel something.]
[Chapter 19: Caravan, 31 songs, p.114]

I can't live without books any more than I can live without music. I can't really write without music either. There's something so intoxicating about art, these various creative forms of expression. Sometimes I feel like the secrets of the universe is wrapped up in there somewhere. Somewhere within the contradiction that at times feels so encompassing and so overwhelming, within that ability to make you feel so very alive and yet so very inadequate. Like the first time I read Hemingway.

Anyway, with another favoured Hornby quote, I'll go back to work:
But sometimes, very occasionally, songs and books and films and pictures express who you are, perfectly. And they don't do this in words or images, necessarily; the connection is a lot less direct and more complicated than that...It's a process like falling in love. You don't necessarily choose the best person, or the wisest, or the most beautiful; there's something else going on...I'm talking about understanding - or at least feeling like I understand - every artistic decision, every impulse, the soul of both the work and its creator. 'This is me,' I wanted to say when I read Tyler's rich, sad, lovely novel. 'I'm not a character, I'm nothing like the author, I haven't had the experiences she writes about. But even so, this is what I feel like, inside. This is what I would sound like, if ever I were to find a voice.'
[Chapter 2: Thunder Road, 31 Songs, p. 11]


Pic from here

[Parting shot: I think this whole thing sums up why I continue to feel compelled to defend Twilight - for the mere the fact that she thanks the artists that inspired her in the acknowledgements and that, with the playlists she posted online while writing the books, you can see the effects of that inspiration. That said, I had to go through fifty thousand Twilight related images while searching for one to include in this blog - there is a world beyond these books people, a wonderful world filled with hobbits, dead princes, pirates, snarky detectives, femme fatales, gangsters, reporters, crime, fairies, sword fights, true love, doomed romances and if you're reading The Dresden Files, it has all of that save the pirates. Broaden your horizons beyond Forks, to introspective moody, narrators; to larger than life characters; to fantastical, funny, heartbreaking, thoughtful books that are just waiting to be fallen in love with. Truth, beauty, freedom, love! Oh hang on, that's Moulin Rouge...]

Music: Norwegian Wood - The Beatles
Mood: Pensive

I don't break hearts, I just dent them

Heeded the call from Edge of Your Bed.

My first crush was actually the older brother of a friend. He had messy black hair and green eyes. Though he went to a different school, he was sort of notorious around the neighbourhood and other boys had a habit of trying to impress him. I just remember thinking he was just the coolest guy. Quintessential leather jacket wearing bad boy really, always in trouble and leaning against walls smoking. His best friend's nickname derived from the time he drank an obscene amount of whiskey and showed up to school completely wasted. Yes, they were all class. I was actually closer to his younger brother but eventually we all hung out every now and then. I was the youngest and the only girl. Despite that fact, I was still the one who ended up buying most of their cigarettes since I never got carded and I certainly never got in trouble. We used to sit in one car in the parking lot with all the doors open listening to music. I have no idea where any of them are now.

My first boyfriend doesn't even really count since I was, what, 8? I don't know. He pursued me with an insane amount of determination and continued to do so long after I "broke up" with him. He wrote me letter and bought me chocolates and eeeverything. He found me on Facebook the other day so we still chat. If you want a serious answer, I can't give you one. I had two other boyfriends, both before 16. There were potentials since but I wasn't particularly interested. In recent memory there's only been one guy I've been willing to let my guard down for but that's neither here nor there. I am just not predisposed to this relationship business. This probably means I've missed out on a key aspect of life or growing up or whatever, but I can't say it's ever really bothered me and it's not really an absence I notice.

Music: Use Somebody - Paramore [cover]
Mood: Procrastinating

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Never too soon

We are the music-makers,
And we are the dreamers of dreams,
Wandering by lone sea-breakers,
And sitting by desolate streams;
World-losers and world-forsakers,
On whom the pale moon gleams:
Yet we are the movers and shakers
Of the world for ever, it seems

With wonderful deathless ditties
We build up the world's great cities.
And out of a fabulous story
We fashion art empire's glory:
One man with a dream, at pleasure,
Shall go forth and conquer a crown;
And three with a new song's measure
Can trample in empire down.

We, in the ages lying
In the buried past of the earth.
Built Nineveh with our sighing,
And Babel itself with our mirth;
And o'erthrew them with prophesying
To the old of the new world's worth;
For each age is a dream that is dying,
Or one that is coming to birth

-- Arthur O’Shaughnessy

Music: Sweet Disposition - The Temper Trap
Mood: Annoyed with self

Dance to the rhythm and die young

Jack has been resurrected in better shape than ever. He is now a new old car, pretty much everything has now been replaced. He's a little bit old, a little bit new, and has been brought back from death. I named him well. I have to say it was a rather joyous reunion. I absolutely love driving Martha around, especially since she has all the possible comforts I could want and I've gotten used to the controls on the steering wheel. People actually take me seriously with her, I'm considered a responsible adult. Jack is...unrefined. He's not a bad looking car and I've got absolutely killer rims on him, but he's still an old model and it's not really a car that screams sophistication or anything like that. Yet I am SO glad to have him back. I don't have to be precious with him, I don't have to feel nervous about where I leave him or how I drive him. He's got battle scars that predate my ownership and so it's ok to be a bit rough, it's not the end of the world.

Now that they've fixed everything, he drives beautifully. Better than he ever has. He doesn't rattle like the world is ending when I'm stopped at the lights and the engine is quiet. I don't know why I didn't do this earlier. I just have to get used to the lack of power steering again. That I'm going to miss. I am now however broke for the forseeable future. I missed The Used pre-sale yesterday cause I had to clean out my accounts. This year is a saving nightmare, no matter how much I try to save for travelling, something keeps coming up. Ah well, we'll get there in the end.

I visited the ever fabulous Ms Roze and her perfect new haircut at work today. Fandom, it demands to be indulged. Plans were made. I've got quite a busy week next week. I revel in the socialness but my uni brain is weeping at my flippant approach to time. I wish my uni brain wouldn't be such a nag.

Another Mat Devine Agony Uncle post, another noteable piece of advice. Conquering your fears 101:
Listen, I’m giving you homework: Go to the nearest pool. dive in, pull up that dumb robot, slap it around and repeat after me: ‘I believe introductions are in order. My name is Elias. I am a human being. I am the top of the fucking food chain, I am a marvel of evolution, engineered to conquer the earth, the sea, and the moon. what are you? Some punk ass robot. That’s all. I am your god. I am your maker. Remember this face. You so much as let out an air bubble when I’m near this pool again, I will come down on you like a storm! LIKE A STORM!”
Also, in the meantime you can try swimming in cenotes in Mexico, like I did last year. No pool cleaning robots there, just snakes and violent monkeys and shit. You know, rational fears

I think I say this every week but still, I love this man.

Last week someone actually mentioned Bourdieu in a comment. That dude is rivalling Marx and Freud in repetetive mentioning in uni readings and then unceremoniously appearing in my everyday life and never leaving me alone. I kind of love that Mat has these existential and philosophical debates with people and that his fans themselves go on to talk about it. It's a whole different plane to the one the bands I usually like operate on.

I was going to put up some pics of the new room but I can't seem to take a decent one. This, however, is the view from my window.


Now, on the topic of pictures, anyone see the new photos from the Hubble Telescope? Astronomy was my first obsession, way back when I was 6. So gorgeous.

Between an immensity of land and an immensity of sky they sat there, incomprehensible, smiling at a continent.

Music: New York City Speed - Kill Hannah
Mood: Should really be working

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

With a little help from my friends

Since it is apparantly Beatles day here today, here is 10 of my favourite Beatles songs in no particular order:

- Hey Jude
- Here comes the sun
- Strawberry Fields Forever
- Across The Universe
- Eleanor Rigby
- All you need is love
- Revolution
- All my loving
- Something
- Let it be

Fairly productive day spent at state library in the company of Roze, and for short time Em. About ten minutes after Em arrived we had to clear the area and venture outside for hot chocolate since we were severly frustrating the man sharing our table - I dubbed him blue guy. But come on, we haven't seen each other in over a week, what do you expect? Roze and I are a menace, but we did work! That is the important thing. I managed to do most of my external media done for the piece. I really wanted to finish it tonight but I got distracted by a racing game Dad acquired for the Wii and then of course, almost-fandom night. Now I'm far too tired to work on it. Ah well, there's always early morning tomorrow! Overall, I think it was quite the lovely day.

Jack's apparantly been fixed so I can pick him up in the morning. Stopping to rob a bank along the way. Yes? No. Wonder if they will let me pay in $5 installments. Hey, a girl can dream right?

Listening to The Gaslight Anthem's 'Sink or Swim' on repeat during various commutes of the day. So, so good. Perfect way to soundtrack the day.

And then I heard it like a shot through my skull to my brain,
I felt my fingertips tingle and it started to rain,
When the walls of my bedroom were tremblin' around me,
This ramshackle voice over attack of a bluesbeat,
Tellin' me he's only looking for fun.
This was the sound of the very last gang in town.

As heard by my wild young heart, like directions on a cold dark night,
Sayin', 'Let it out. You're doin' all right.'
And I heard it in his chain gang soul.
It wasn't just the same sad song.
Saying, 'Let it out, you're doing all right.'
And I'm doing all right, are you doin' all right?

And I carried these songs like a comfort wherever I'd go.
They was there when my summers was high, there when she left me alone.
Saying... 'The soul is hard to find.'

And I never got to tell him so I just wrote it down,
I wrapped a couple chords around it and I let it come out,
When the walls of my bedroom trembled around me,
To this ramshackle voice over attack of a bluesbeat,
And a girl, on the excitement gang.
That was the sound of the very last gang in town.

Music: I'da called you Woody, Joe - The Gaslight Anthem
Mood: Thirsty

I am actually being productive, honest

Oh no, not Lisa!


Music: The soft shuffle of the State Library
Mood: Working

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Between the dust and the debris

Most people are fine in small doses, it's when you get to know them and spend more time with them, that you usually begin to understand why other people don't like them. There you were defending them to everyone, only to find yourself in that very same boat. It happens sometimes. We humans are weird creatures.

I've heard someone use the expression life is going to hell in a handbasket. That pretty much sums up 2009 for me. It's just one thing after another, like a ship being battered against the rocks repeatedly. I feel so run down and stressed out. Instead of going absolutely insane as I normally would have, I'm early calm and apathetic. I am the voice of logic, I am cleaning up and making dinner, I am tying up loose ends, making phone calls, driving all over town. At the moment, I am running this household. Thing is, I drew up a timetable at work yesterday and I virtually have to spend every free waking hour working on my thesis. I feel like I'm not getting a fair chance at it, one thing or another keeps popping up and I just can't concentrate or think or bring myself to put this first. I really have to. It needs to be a priority, not just something I'm doing when I have a spare moment. This is utterly ridiculous.

Speaking of the dreaded thesis, this reminded me of it:

It seems, as one becomes older,
That the past has another pattern, and ceases to be a mere sequence—
Or even development: the latter a partial fallacy
Encouraged by superficial notions of evolution,
Which becomes, in the popular mind, a means of disowning the past.
The moments of happiness—not the sense of well-being,
Fruition, fulfilment, security or affection,
Or even a very good dinner, but the sudden illumination—
We had the experience but missed the meaning,
And approach to the meaning restores the experience
In a different form, beyond any meaning
We can assign to happiness. I have said before
That the past experience revived in the meaning
Is not the experience of one life only
But of many generations—not forgetting
Something that is probably quite ineffable:
The backward look behind the assurance
Of recorded history, the backward half-look
Over the shoulder, towards the primitive terror.
Now, we come to discover that the moments of agony
(Whether, or not, due to misunderstanding,
Having hoped for the wrong things or dreaded the wrong things,
Is not in question) are likewise permanent
With such permanence as time has. We appreciate this better
In the agony of others, nearly experienced,
Involving ourselves, than in our own.
For our own past is covered by the currents of action,
But the torment of others remains an experience
Unqualified, unworn by subsequent attrition.
People change, and smile: but the agony abides.
[T.S. Eliot - The Dry Salvages]

I have to submit my application for Masters on the 28th. I need to compile a portfolio of my writing before then as well as get all the relevant paperwork sorted out. Please brain, remember this.

Tomorrow's schedule begins with a 6am wake up call in order to fit in exercise, shower, and breakfast before leaving at 7.30. I will spend the day in the state library, hopefully with Roze's company, where I will complete this creative piece and either do some research or start the re-writing process. Probably be there until 4ish. I think I'll make pasta for dinner while indulging what is now almost-fandom night. Reading to conclude days activities.

Rinse, and repeat.

It's strange but depsite the fact that I have been so busy with all this other crap, I've been more social this year than ever. I generally feel quite good too. In the social situations, I mean. I'm not really stumbling along in the awkward AVPD labyrinth hell it usually resembled. In that respect, it's been a good year. It's the silver lining of 2009, the things that don't make this year a total wash-out so far - a social life, great friends, confidence, and Abbi visiting.

I've sent quite a bit of time virtual window shopping tonight. Fairly sure I want to acquire this skinny authentic black Levi's from Just Jeans. There's also a gorgeous trench I've fallen in love with, but honestly, what need do I have for a UK trench coat? None, I tell you! I still really covet it though. My jacket fetish knows no bounds. Perhaps I can fit in a bit of shopping tomorrow too. I need tights from Dangerfield, shorts, aforementioned jeans, and new sunglasses. I doubt I can justify a shopping spree when Jack is standing in some garage twenty minutes away, awaiting his new head gasket. Woe.

There is a piece of cake on my blogger icon, does that mean it's Blogger's birthday?

Look down, the ground below is crumbling
Look up, the stars are all exploding

Music: Last day on earth - Kate Miller-Heidke
Mood: Thoughtful