THIS-WAS-SO-WORTH-THREE-HOURS-OF-MY-TIME

Tidbits and tough convos

* Today was the first non-crazy day since the boys got here. Well, I guess yesterday wasn’t too crazy either. FINALLY some routine, stability, and familiarity. YASSS. And they seem to have calmed down considerably, which is a relief.

* I may have given Lego three hours straight of computer games today…and you know that’s NOT how I roll. Totally worth it though. I knitted for an hour and a half and then painted for an hour and a half. I feel like my sanity has been completely restored. AND Caterpillar slept through the night for the first time in at least a week last night. So much sanity. YASSS.

* Lego has NO stranger danger. At all. Every kid I’ve ever watched is super shy around strangers and certainly doesn’t chat them up. But whenever Lego wants something, he asks for it. “Hey! Sir!! Excuse me!!” He even had a three minute conversation about gum with the checkout lady at Michaels. Endearing, but definitely not what I’m used to.

-tough convos-

My friend called me crying because she got in a fight with her SO.
“Was she crying?”
“Yes, she was.”
“Why?”
“Because she was sad.”
“Why?”
“Because she got in a fight with her SO. Do your parents ever fight?”
(I don’t know why I asked. Sometimes things just pop out of my stupid mouth)
“Yes. This one time my dad choked my mom. And she couldn’t breathe. It was really scary. I had to run to get help.”
Ugh. Poor kid. That’s probably too detailed to blog about. I’ll delete it later.

Out of the blue…
“If Caterpillar gets adopted, her mom will be sad.”
“Oh. Caterpillar is going home to her mommy, just like you.”
“I know, but if she wasn’t, her mommy would be sad and always miss her.”
“You’re very right.”
“If Caterpillar gets adopted, would she have visits still?”
“Caterpillar is not up for adoption. But if she were, she would not have visits every week.”
“That’s so sad for Caterpillar’s mommy.”
Ugh. My heart. And my gosh, does this kid have empathy.

Happy Third Anniversary, Snark Theater!

Today, February 8th, 2016, marks this blog’s third anniversary. It’s been three years, thirty snarks (plus one that’s still ongoing), and some two and a half thousand posts. A lot of fun for me—yes, even when certain fans come to tell me how wrong I am—and, I hope, for you all too.

This past year has been the biggest for this blog. In particular, my follower count more than tripled since the last anniversary, and I can’t thank you enough for that. You are making this worth every single one of the countless hour I spend on these terrible books.

So it’s time to look forward, and on to the future of the blog. Where are we going next?

Keep reading

3

Here is a much better succession. The drawing on the left is two hours of work. The drawing in the middle is three hours of work. The drawing on the right is four hours of work. 


I’m trying to discipline myself into a) timing my work so I get a better idea of what I’m worth b) pacing myself to that I don’t start hating the piece early on and look at each session with fresh eyes. I’m also trying to work with my more realistic style by building up layers. 

So I had my electrolysis session three nights ago. This totals 28 hours of pain so far but totally worth the results. Today was the first day anyone commented on the redness (and this has gone down so much since Tuesday’s session). I just replied that I have sensitive skin from shaving which isn’t far from the truth - though it tends to be my neck that is most sensitive to shaving. I’ll try to post a before picture just ahead of my next session in two weeks time xx

FSSW question?

What do you ladies charge for your overnights? I have a client who wants to take me out of town.

I actually just lowered my rate (I wasn’t very busy) from 350 to 300. So for long calls I charge 300 for the first hour and 200 after that. But he wants to go out of the city for three days and I don’t even know what I’m worth tbh. And it’s not like we’re going to be having sex the whole time

in other complaining news biostat is hell and i’ve failed to complete two assignments so far in a timely manner bc i don’t know enough about the subject despite sitting through two hours of it three days a week so i might drop it but i hate dropping things so likely ill just listen to a lot of khan academy this weekend and pray to heaven i do better on the midterm

Lunch, a short walk, and a chat with my boss later and I’m at 38 down, 112 to go.

For further motivation, it is apparently a holiday in B.C. on Monday. \o/  It would be so nice to have all this done before a three day weekend… I’ve still got 3 hours and 20 minutes normal time, and it’d be worth staying a bit late to manage that. We shall see.

I'M JUST KINDA NOT MAD ABOUT WALT DISNEY WORLD ANYMORE

It’s weird and I guess it’s part of getting over it but I finally, like…two years later, got sentimental about working at Disney World this week. It’s because “the blog” I wrote started making its rounds again and it really made me think of the place I was when I started this anti-Disney crusade. Being bitterly “anti-Disney World” was one of my most well known traits for so long and I just final to feel at peace with it and distanced from it.

Not that I would ever go back ( For one, no rehire for liiiiiiiiiiiiife. For two, my bowel movements are worth more than $9.50 an hour. For three, I don’t think I could stomach being treated as inhumane as the management staff treats their Cast) but I’ve gotten sentimental about the time I spent there. The people I worked directly with were always so good to me and, if not, always provided stories to tell. Most of my best friends are people I met at Disney or people I met through people at Disney. And I gained so many off the wall tales that could only be gotten there. I miss the fun times a bit; the times in-between worrying about money and fighting for basic decency from management. I’ve kinda started to miss fucking around on Jungle Cruise boats, and being obnoxious at the Mansion, and seeing how juxtapositionly ridiculous I could push myself at The Hall Of Presidents (Pirates can, frankly, still mostly shove it until they properly fix it).

Look, I’ll always have issues with Disney because of the way they treat their workers. There are only so many people you can watch get stepped on before you stand up. And I’ll always fight Disney World for its declining quality control. But I’ve found that ambitious quality is a is problem with most places across the board as the American Dream moves farther from the goal to be the best/most innovative for the sole purpose of being the best/most innovated. The US as now moved the goal of the American Dream to making the most money for the top of the pyramid. It’s not a WDW problem that WDW is a money sucking shell of what it was from 1971 to 1995; it’s a culture problem in our society.

But, all that aside, I’m finally to the place where I can look at my time spent there and smile and how much I miss the good times of it. And that’s nice.

It’s going to be nice to spend a few days in Florida soon and enjoy the parks as just Jonathan and not Jonathan That Guy Who Has That Blog About How Terrible Working At Disney Is. The last time I truly enjoyed the parks was around the end of April 2013 (when I first started working there. It’s going to be really nice to go back and enjoy the parks again for the first time in three years.

sleepy-skittles asked:

12, 19, 23

Katttt hi

12: Have you ever stayed up 48 hours?

Yep. I’ve stayed up for three days actually. 10 outta 10 do not recommend. It was college and I had finals for 18 credit hours worth of classes while I worked like 60 hours a week. Hashtag yikes.

19: Would you go back in time if you were given the chance?

Okay, like, I wanna say yes, but there’s that’s whole you might sneeze on a cat wrong and changes the whole universe and I kinda love my friends so….no.


23: Do you have piercings? How many?

Just my ears twice. I had my nose pierced for a bit and I want to pierce my lip, which I can now do because I’m my own employee now wooooo. I just haven’t gone to do it. It’s on the list.

Thanks babe!

Update

I’ve been so busy lately! I have a test on chapters 1&2 of Middle Eastern History, a quiz in Stats (plus a bunch of practices and review), a group project meeting for Communication Studies, 5 chapters worth of notes in History of Modern East Asia, and a unit 2 quiz (plus homework) for Arabic! And that’s just for this week. Luckily my normally three hour long math class is only going to be an hour today, and my Asian History class is cancelled for the week, so that opens up some extra time for me to get everything done. 

Monday night I was able to meet with my counselor (finally!) and she looked over my Ed Plan and agreed everything seemed to be in place. She also reminded me of a trip to some of the UC’s my school is planning over spring break, so I have to fill out the paperwork and drop off the application, hopefully I can go. 

I’m happy with my progress so far though, I’ve been able to cross a lot of things off my to-do list. Hopefully I can continue to knock things off throughout the week and keep up the productivity.

James Bay at The Grammy Museum 1/15/16

I almost, ALMOST, didn’t make it to this show. I contemplated selling my ticket for multiple reasons. First, because I didn’t want to drive out to LA. Second, because I was broke after buying my Coachella ticket. And third, because I’ve already seen James Bay live twice. But I decided to use my brain and think logically… James Bay is nominated for THREE Grammys this year. Our small-time singer-songwriter from the UK isn’t so small anymore. Never again will I be able to see him perform for just $15 so close to my home. 

It was beyond worth it. I got to sit and listen to him talk about his musical influences, his passions, his story, and his musical process for almost an hour. He explained the story behind his hit song “Hold Back the River” and how it’s about trying to stay close to the ones you love while simultaneously trying to give your career your all. He explained how the title “Chaos and the Calm” came from a conversation he had one time (but he doesn’t remember who). He told us that 99% of the time, the guitar comes first, and then the lyrics when he writes songs. After, he performed an acoustic set for a crowd of about 100 people or so. My heart literally melted and I’m not too sure where to find it anymore. 

SYDNEY

BLUE MOUNTAINS

I am not familiar with the Blue Mountains. I don’t have many memories of the few times I have gone up there. I remember we went up to Katoomba once to go look at the Three Sisters – this was a long time ago. My sister Chrissy and her husband Darren was with us. Darren ended up getting lost – we were standing near the car waiting for him for hours and hours it was so boring. This was before we had mobile phones (or the internet) – so we had no way of contacting him. He ended up returning and by that time we were pissed. Melissa and I went up to Katoomba once (because she used to live there); however it wasn’t really worth going up there because it was boring that day and Melissa and I had no money. We were trying to find a place to eat that was cheap and we couldn’t find anywhere. We ended up eating lunch at this filthy cheap place which made our skin crawl. I went to Katoomba and the Blue Mountains for a drive with my mum a long time ago – there were a lot of vegetarian/vegan restaurants and cafes which I liked. There were a lot of nice cafes up there. The best thing about the Blue Mountains is the scenery and the wild birds and animals. The thing I don’t like about the mountains sitting water which smells like a dirty public toilet – I can’t stand that smell. I also don’t like cold weather – so that’s why I never go up there. I like to be as close to Sydney CBD as possible so if I go in any direction I go to Sydney CBD – not the other way round.

EMU PLAINS  

Emu Plains is my favourite place to live in the Western Suburbs of Sydney – it’s not called the Western Suburbs but actually the lower Blue Mountains; however it’s close to Penrith. Even though it’s close to Penrith – it’s so much nicer than Penrith. I lived in Emu Plains for a long time. It’s very green and there are beautiful gardens. There are really nice houses along the river. The Nepean River is nice and the people who live there are a bit more classy. It’s getting expensive to live there but it’s worth it. I remember Marie came over to visit me once [Marie is from Mount Druitt] and we went to Lennox shopping centre and Marie was looking around and she was astonished at how nice and normal the people were there. She said to me “This is so different to Mount Druitt – when I go to the shops at Mount Druitt there are people screaming out ‘Fuck’ and people fighting all the time”.


PENRITH      

I was brought up in Penrith as a child. What I like about Penrith is that it’s familiar. I’ve lived in Penrith but the only reason I lived there was because I was poor. If I had a lot of money I would live in Sydney (near the CBD – but in a nice area). The thing I liked about Penrith is that it’s very Aussie. You don’t see that many Aussie characters these days; it’s like people are ashamed to be Australian. It’s weird; I’ve never come across a person from France who is ashamed of being French. The stores in Penrith are okay – but they are just the same basic stores you get anywhere else. The nicest bar to drink at in Penrith was the Log Cabin; unfortunately that burned down and they didn’t rebuild it. The only other bar’s to drink at is the Red Cow, Penrith Panthers and the Penrith RSL. Panthers and the RSL club are mainly for people who have an addiction to pokies (I call them zombies). I hate pokies they are boring. There isn’t really much in Penrith to get excited about. I remember watching this documentary recently on ABC (Channel 2) and Germaine Greer was talking about how she was brought up in the suburbs (in Melbourne – I think) and she said she hated living there because it was so dreary and it wasn’t beautiful. She said that she liked beautiful locations. I relate to what she said completely – I feel this same way about Penrith and the suburbs. There’s nothing really beautiful about Penrith. Penrith is the place where dreams aren’t made. Most people who live in Penrith just live basic lives. They meet a boyfriend at the pub and pop out a few kids – they either live on welfare payments or they work in a basic job. I don’t think anyone here has dreams and even if they did they probably don’t have the money to be able to achieve them. Penrith and the suburbs are depressing places to be. A lot of poor people live in Penrith because it’s a povo area – people struggle in Penrith from day to day. These are people in Penrith who work hard to get a little bit of money. These are people who aren’t handed everything on a silver platter. The suburb’s is a family area. I never felt like I belonged in Penrith because I wasn’t really into finding some guy at the pub, getting married and having kids and spending the rest of my life working in a job I don’t really like just to struggle pay off a mortgage. I just don’t fit in with that scenario – that’s alien to me and what I want in life. I don’t think most people would live in Penrith if they were millionaires. You never see celebrities moving out to Penrith to live (except for Panthers footballers and they don’t count). Penrith is a lot nicer than Mount Druitt or Blacktown – I would rather live in Penrith than those areas. Penrith is also better than the Central Coast – my dad says that the Entrance is like Mount Druitt with a beach (I went up there and he was right). Keith (Sharon’s boyfriend) said if he wins the lotto he will build a mansion in Cambridge Park – Keith will be the richest person in Cambridge Park; but not the smartest. Penrith has the Nepean River but the council haven’t done anything with it. You think they would build restaurants, café and bars along the river for people to socialise there – it’s been sitting there doing nothing for years – it’s such a waste. The only nice part of Penrith is that there are lot of down to earth people who live there. I just hate all the bogans that hang around Penrith and all the meat heads. I think you are better off being single if you are in Penrith – there’s not much there to convince you to be in a relationship. A lot of bogans breed in Penrith and the Western Suburbs – it’s their breeding ground. I remember some Penrith politician saying that Penrith was Pram City and she got a lot of criticism for it. No one accused her of being wrong though.  


KINGSWOOD            

Kingswood Yuk – I remember when we were kids my Dad and my stepmother lived in the apartments across from the train station. They didn’t live there for long. It was very feral there back in those days – it’s still feral. We used to go to the shops near the train station. There wasn’t anywhere nice to go as kids (or adults) in Kingswood. It’s a complete dive. I remember one day us kids walked to the shops and rang up our parents and told them we didn’t want to be at our Dad’s and stepmothers anymore so we walked home. We were kids but even back in our days of naivety we knew we didn’t want to be in Kingswood.

WERRINGTON          

Werrington is one of those in-between towns. You wouldn’t go to Werrington for a reason – I don’t think there is a reason to go to Werrington. I remember when I was young my Dad and my stepmother lived there – they lived in a brand new house opposite a park. There wasn’t anything interesting there. My dad didn’t live there for long (they moved around a lot). My Dad lives in a nicer area now. I remember my stepbrother celebrated his 21st birthday in the hall across the road from where my dad lived. The park where we played in was gone – demolished – I was heartbroken. Werrington isn’t one of the nicest areas; it’s kind of a povo (Poverty) area now. There are shops there but I’ve never been to them (they are near the train station). I know Penrith Gaols is there; I’ve been there a couple of times – it’s okay.  

ST MARYS                

If one area needs a massive makeover its St Mary’s it’s a massive shit hole. The train station is eww. I have been to St Mary’s a few times and I have been there since they got rid of the drug clinic but it still looks like a druggy area. You walk down Queen Street in St Mary’s and all you see are bogan’s and really down and out people walking along – a lot of them look like zombies – it’s like The Walking Dead. It’s scary walking down the street – you keep looking behind you because you expect to be robbed, raped or murdered or something. There’s a shopping centre across from St Mary’s train station – there’s nothing exciting in there. Queen Street isn’t worth going to – unless you like to look at discount stores. The only thing I do like about St Marys is a couple of the vintage stores. That’s the only reason I would go to St Mary’s. The eating places on Queen Street (take my advice) don’t eat in them they are dirty – so gross. My mum used to work at St Mary’s and she took me to have lunch at this café (take away) place on Queen Street and I found like public hairs in my sandwich it was so gross. I made a complaint and they asked me if I would like another sandwich and I said “Eww no – I want my money back” I never went back there again. I also went to this job interview once when I was young to a place called ‘Lucky’s” (Lucky’s Café or something like that) on Queen St, St Mary’s and the guy who worked there was so disturbing. He was sitting there asking me questions and he was picking his nose and wiped his snot on my resume. He also asked me if I had a boyfriend (why was he asking me that for?). I usually get upset when I get turned down for jobs – but I was happy I didn’t get that one. I couldn’t imagine working for such a person. He was so unhygienic and he works in the hospitality industry. I just wanted to throw soap and water all over him. There’s another shopping centre in St Mary’s it’s got Target and other stores inside it – the eating area is very very small – you are lucky to be able to get a seat to sit down and eat. I like the ‘pick your own’ Chinese food restaurant in the centre – but it’s not the best Chinese I’ve eaten – it’s kinda shit. I do prefer Chinese places where you can pick your own food – like all-you-can-eat.  I don’t feel safe in St Mary’s. St Mary’s has a Rugby League club it’s kind of like Penrith Panthers club (just full of pokies) – but it has an all-you-can-eat restaurant in it and that’s a good place to eat.

MOUNT DRUITT      

Mount Druitt is a bit of a hole. There isn’t much in Mount Druitt – there are no tourist spots. My step-sister Marie (I believe she may be my ex step-sister at this present time) lives in Mount Druitt. She was brought up there her whole life. She is very proud of Mount Druitt and she says it is no different to anywhere else (I don’t think she’s been anywhere else). It’s amazing to me when I come across people who say they like Mount Druitt and proud they live there. I don’t get it – they seem to be happy living there. If you like living in Mount Druitt – you probably fit in there. Marie’s opinions on Mount Druitt sometimes are conflicting. Sometimes she would talk about how rough it is and how she wants to leave it and go somewhere nicer. I have been to Mount Druitt quite a few times so I can make a fair judgement on the location. Marie lived in a rough neighbourhood – there’s a lot of bogan’s living in her neighbourhood. Lots of people screaming at each other – I just don’t understand why they have to yell everything. Marie was quite classy compared to a lot of other people who lived there – Marie was a bit rough around the edges though. She always cared about her appearance; however her manners were questionable. She always spoke down to people who worked in retail or hospitality – like they were beneath her. Marie’s home had been broken into more than 3 times. I remember every night her father had to push their big lounge chair against the front door in case anyone tried to break in. I don’t think they cared about the back door (?). I remember once there was a burnt car in her front yard. She told me and mum “some kids burnt a car in front of our house last night” and we were like “that’s nice”. They had a tree at the back of their house – that was burned down by some kids as well. Whenever mum and I dropped Marie home – we used to see the black tree. Marie also got attacked at her bus stop near her house – she had her bag stolen on her way to work. She went to the police but even though she saw the person who attacked her she didn’t know the difference between an Islander and an aboriginal person – she said “They all look the same to me.” I think the reason why a lot of people live in Mount Druitt is because it’s cheaper to rent and also cheaper to buy a house. Most people can’t afford to live in Sydney CBD so they have to live in the suburbs. Mount Druitt has a Westfield – it’s pretty basic but it’s okay. There’s no food café’s or restaurants in Mount Druitt that I like. I remember Marie and I used to eat at the all-you-can-eat Pizza Hut outside Westfield – that was good; we liked eating there at lunch time. You can eat pizza, hot chips, pasta, salads, ice cream etc. I think that might be the only Pizza Hut all-you-can eat restaurant that is open in Sydney these days – all the others have closed down (it’s a shame). These days most Pizza Hut’s just do pick up or delivery – I miss when you could go in there and eat and use the all-you-can-eat buffet. What I like in Mount Druitt is some of the vintage stores outside Westfield. I like vintage stores – I like finding clothes but as a bookaholic I’m always buying books. I like the Salvation Army store in Mount Druitt but it can be a bit of a rip-off. They have a sign up $2 each for DVDs – but when you go to the counter to buy the DVD – they open it up and count how many discs are inside it and they will charge you $2 for each disc inside the DVD case. It’s unethical to charge people by how many discs are inside. Imagine if JB HI FI did this? Imagine if JB HI FI put a sign up saying $30 DVDs and when you go to the counter they charged you $30 for every disc inside the DVD case? It’s highway robbery. The Mount Druitt Salvation Store is dodgy like that. I like Mount Druitt because they have a few different female fashion stores – it’s not just the common fashion stores you see everywhere else. I like the Asian fashion stores – they seem to have more variety in different styles.

DOONSIDE                

Doonside is a bit of a shit hole – it’s a lot like Mount Druitt. There are lots of feral people who live there. My aunty lives in Doonside (I should say my ex-aunty). When you are on the train there is a field (sports field) you look across the field and there’s her house. She’s near Featherdale Wildlife Park. I think the only good thing about Doonside is Featherdale Wildlife Park. I love animals and if you love koalas you should go – there are lots of koalas there and you can get close to them (unlike Taranga Zoo). There are a lot of Australian animals – so it supports Australian animals and it also helps injured animals if they can’t go back into the wild. If I lived in Doonside I would get a yearly pass and I would just go there whenever I wanted and visit the animals all the time. I love bilby’s so I would visit them. Last time I went to Featherdale Wildlife Park they didn’t have any of the bilby’s there. The penguins were missing and so were some of the other animals. I brought this grass in an ice-cream cone to feed the kangaroos and wallabies and none of the animals wanted it – it cost me a $1. I think they just got fed so much they were just being fat and lazy. I love going to Taranga Zoo – but I think Featherdale Wildlife Park is the next best thing. It’s funny how they have this cute little zoo in the middle of Doonside.  

BLACKTOWN          

Blacktown is one of the worst areas ever – I hate it. What an ugly suburb. You get off the train and you get handed all these fucking religious pamphlets – I’m an atheist so I don’t appreciate people pushing Jesus into my face.  If I stood outside the train station handing people atheist pamphlets criticising religion – I would be called a “racist” or something; however it’s completely legal to push their fairy tales onto me – its double standards. One of the things I hate the most about Blacktown is the Main Street – I think it is called ‘Main Street’ if memory serves me right (I can’t even be bothered to google it). It’s an ugly ugly street and there is no way I would go into any of those stores. There are no nice restaurants or cafes to eat in that street – they look unhygienic and feral. Blacktown is a very bogan suburb it’s got bogans everywhere and Main Street Blacktown looks like a dirty third world country – it’s absolutely awful to see that in Australia. I avoid Main Street Black like it’s the plague I don’t feel safe there. I think the only thing I do like in Blacktown is probably Blacktown Westpoint – they don’t have Westfield they have WestPoint in Blacktown. There’s a Chinese place in the food court that I absolutely love. It’s like you serve yourself and you can get whatever food you want. I go to Blacktown just for that Chinese place (that’s how much I love it). Blacktown is like Mount Druitt they have a better range of fashion stores for women and young women than Penrith does. It’s not just the standard fashion stores like ‘Supre’ etc. I like fashion stores – I like the Asian fashion stores – they have a variety of different clothes in them. There’s not really that much in Blacktown I like. Last time I was in Blacktown there were a group of bogans fighting each other outside Blacktown Westpoint. There was one guy going up the escalator going towards Westpoint and there were a bunch of bogans hanging outside Westfield (near Chemist Warehouse) and one of the bogan men from the group saw this guy and started going up to him and screaming and telling him he wanted to fight him. So this other guy turns around and starts screaming back and walking down closer the escalator to him. Everyone was standing back because they thought violence would occur. The bogan (who was with the group of bogans) took his jacket off and threw it on the ground. Then the bogan who was on the escalator was walking down towards the other bogan and he took his jacket off and threw it down on the ground. I was just standing there thinking “Why are they taking their clothes off?” I’m not into bogan fights – because they just do it so they can get attention and because they think they are tough (but they are just feral losers) so I just walked away and I didn’t see what happened next. But when I walked out again all the bogans were gone; and there were all these police officers and police vehicles everywhere so I just put two and two together.

SEVEN HILLS            

I actually used to go to Seven Hills a lot to the shopping centre (which is near the train station) because I knew someone who worked there. I have been back there since but I don’t try to make a habit of it. There’s nothing there that you can’t get anywhere else. It’s a bit daggy. There are no food stores or stores that I like there. Seven Hills is an industrial area and I hate industrial areas. I don’t know what else to say about Seven Hills – it’s just Seven Hills.

WENTWORTHVILLE            

Between Seven Hills and Westmead there are places called Toongabbie, Pendle Hill, and then there is Wentworthville. Melissa lived there once; but she didn’t live there for long. I’ve always dreamed about living by myself – but due to financial hardships I’ve always had to live with other people. I really admired Melissa for getting her own apartment it was really cool. I don’t think Melissa liked living by herself – I think she is the type of person who is a bit insecure and needs to be around another person to feel confident. She had a pet cat I don’t know what happened to him; he was cute. Melissa lived in Wentworthville for a short time before she moved and went to live in Werrington with Lamo Bogan. Wentworthville is one of those in-between towns and you know I’m not fond of them. I need people, stores and things around me. I did stay at Melissa’s one night at Wentworthville – we went drinking in Parramatta; Melissa was drunk before I even turned up – she got so drunk she was standing outside a bar and they wouldn’t let her in because they could tell she was waisted and she was yelling and screaming and banging on the wall to get in. The police came and they told her if she didn’t leave they would arrest her. Melissa was so embarrassed about it the next day she made me promise not to tell anyone – I didn’t. Even if I did she would probably deny it anyway and it’s not like she did anything bad (she didn’t get arrested) she was just drunk. Melissa and I the next day walked down the main street in Wentworthville and it wasn’t a nice area. I was happy to leave. I haven’t been back since.

WESTMEAD              

Melissa and her friend Denny lived in unit blocks near Westmead train station. It was good for Melissa and Denny to live there because it was closer to Parramatta and the city. It was closer to where they both worked. I didn’t really like Westmead – mainly because there’s nothing there (except for a hospital) and a couple of shops (which was nothing to write home about). Another reason I didn’t like it was because it was another one of those in-between towns. Denny had lived with a variety of people before he invited Melissa to move in with him. Denny did the place up really cool – it looked good. I love Indian people and I love Indian food – I’m a vegetarian so I love rice, curry and vegetables. A lot of Hindu Indian people are vegetarians. However I do remember walking up the stairs to Melissa and Denny’s apartment and it stunk of curry – not fresh curry – not from someone cooking it at the time. It stunk of old curry – the stench was in the floors, the walls, the roof – the smell was there all the time and it was overpowering. It was pretty bad. Every time we went there and we walked into that building that’s all we could smell.

PARRAMATTA        

I like Sydney CBD; that’s why I like Parramatta – Parramatta is like the mini version of the city. However Parramatta isn’t as cool or classy as the city is. Parramatta is more feral – but it’s the western suburbs of Sydney so you expect that. If I had to live anywhere between Penrith and Sydney CBD I would probably live in Parramatta. You’re not living in the city but it’s easier to get to the city from there. Parramatta does have a Chinese food store that I love – I like going there just for the Chinese food. I’m really fussy when it comes to food so when I find a place I like I just become its number one customer. I never enter Parramatta Westfield when it’s school holidays. When its school holidays I hide – I just can’t stand crowds and I hate fighting to find a place to be able to sit down to eat. I have been to Parramatta Westfield recently and I love how they have free Wi Fi. Parramatta Westfield is one of my favourites because there are lots of stores and like Mount Druitt and Blacktown they have a broader range of female fashion stores. My mum lives in Parramatta – unlike me she hates it and she hates going anywhere near Parramatta Westfield. I had lunch with my mum recently (not in Parramatta) and she looked around and said “at least there’s more people like me here” and I looked around and I thought she was talking about old people; because there was a lot of old people sitting around us and I said “Yes there is a lot of older people here” and she said “No, I mean Australians”. Mum thinks that Parramatta isn’t Australian anymore – she said she plays ‘spot the Aussie’ when she’s there. When I go to Parramatta I do see a lot of different nationalities but they don’t really worry me so much. Mum said she feels like an outsider in her own country. Mum also hates all the Muslims that are in Parramatta – she said they are “taking over”. She calls Muslim women who wear burqa’s ‘letter boxes’ and when a Muslim woman in a burqa walks past; my mum says out loud “that reminds me I need to post a letter”. My mum admits she hates Muslims and she admits she can be a bit racist – but mum said Muslims are prejudiced towards us Australians and our way of life – she said they are trying to change our lifestyle to suit them. I don’t like Islam either – I’m an atheist so I hate all religions. I just hate it when religious people try to throw their religion in my face and try to hand me religious pamphlets. If religious people don’t annoy me – they don’t bother me so much. I don’t have a problem with religious people – I just hate their religion. Mum is scared about the terrorist attack that happened in Parramatta last year – she lives close to that area where it happened. My cousin said that area of Parramatta is a shit hole and she said “I didn’t know she lived in that area” my cousin said that area of Parramatta is rough and awful and full of drug addicts. My mum hates bogans and drug addicts. My mum does go out a lot – but she has a car so she drives to a better locations. Besides some of the few decent cafes, restaurants and bars in the CBD area of Parramatta there’s’ not really much in Parramatta to get excited over. I think I just mainly like it for the stores, food places and the location.

GRANVILLE  

I went to Granville once to go see the Granville Train Disaster memorial. Its sad how all those people died – it was such a tragedy. I was with my Aunty and my Uncle and they took me to these food stores in Granville but they were just so foreign and I’m a fussy eater. I felt like I was in a different country. I didn’t really like Granville so I left.

LIDCOMBE    

I think Marie’s father used to work at Lidcombe. I don’t know about Lidcombe when I go past it I look out the window and it doesn’t look like a nice place to be so I just stay on the train. When we used to go to the Sydney Royal Easter show we get off one train and get on another train.  

STRATHFIELD          I’ve been to Strathfield before; quite a lot actually. Well I’ve been on the train station lots of times because sometimes you have to swap trains. However I did do my training for a job near Strathfield once; I remember walking around this area for like 20 minutes just to get to Strathfield train station. I was lost – every person I walked past I would ask where the train station was because I just wanted to get the hell out of there. I didn’t really like walking around that area; it wasn’t nice.

NEWTOWN    

Newtown is considered West of Sydney even though it’s so close to Sydney CBD. It’s more like Sydney than the western suburbs of Sydney. If you are going to live out West you live in Newtown because it’s one of my favourite places in Sydney. There are lots of cool shops in Newtown – vintage book stores (which of course I love). A lot of cool bars to drink at. I don’t really fit in at Penrith and I don’t fit in at North Sydney – I don’t know where I really belong but my friend Kyle said I’m probably more of a Newtown girl. I do like it there it’s sort of cool but down to earth as well. No one is really stuck up there – but it still has a bit of class. It’s kind of a hip area and people go out to drink and socialise and they don’t play pokies. If you drink in Penrith – you are lucky if they play music and if they do they either play Cold Chisel or 80s pop music. In Newtown they play variety of music which is what I prefer. Music’s important to me in a social situation. There’s nothing better than sitting with friends, drinking and listening to some decent music.

REDFERN      

I remember when I was young my Dad and my brother used to hate on Redfern all the time. They said it was a nasty horrible area. I haven’t been there but I know it had a bad reputation. I have heard good things about it since; I heard it’s a nicer area than what it used to be. I should go there one day to check it out.  

CENTRAL      

I hate Central train station – I always get lost trying to find the platform that I need. There’s lack of signs at Central Station which doesn’t make it clear where you have to go. You try to find someone who works there to ask – but you can never find anyone to help you. They need better signs. I don’t like Central Station; I prefer Town Hall station more – it’s nicer. Matthew used to work at Central station at the bar that was there. I think it was where Hungry Jacks is now. I remember once I met him after work and we were going to hang out at Sydney CBD and have a few drinks; but we saw this feral guy smashing the glass at this food bistro and we were the only witnesses so we had to hang at the police station answering questions. They took our names and our phone numbers but they never rang us to go to court. So that kind of ruined our plans for the night. I don’t like the public toilets at Central train station; they are gross. The outside of Central station isn’t that nice either. I don’t like Central. The building is actually nice but inside and outside it’s feral.  

TOWN HALL            

Town Hall is my favourite train stations. I just think it’s easier to find your platform and they are so close together it’s impossible to get lost. There’s food court right next door so it’s easy to go and grab something to eat. My favourite food store at Town Hall food court is the salad store – I eat salad all the time so whenever I grab something to eat there. There’s also Victoria building with 100’s of shops in it; so of course I love that. I like Town Hall – it’s 100% better than Central Train Station – a lot nicer. I’ve also read a bit of history about Town Hall, Town Hall station and the Victoria building so it holds a lot of history interest for me.

CIRCULAR QUAY    

I love Circular Quay it’s one of my favourite places to go. If I go out to have a drink and socialise with friends I go to Circular Quay – I either go to the Rocks or I go to near the Opera House. Sometimes we drink at the Opera Bar. However I do have my favourite place to drink in Sydney at Circular Quay I won’t say where it is because stalkers happen. My Dad came down to Sydney once and wanted to meet up with us but he didn’t want to go to Penrith or Mount Druitt or anywhere like that – so I took him to my favourite drinking spot. He really loved it and said “I could live here”. The Rocks is nice; there are a lot of good restaurants there and a lot of nice bars to drink at. There’s a lot of history at the Rocks so that is interesting to me. Janet works at Circular Quay – I love Circular Quay but I don’t know if working there would be a good thing or a bad thing. I like Circular Quay – I’m the sort of person who needs to drink at a nice location, with nice scenery with decent people around me – so Sydney gives me what I need.

KINGS CROSS          

I don’t like Kings Cross I remember when we were young (just turned 18) we went there because we were trying to check out all these different places we could go. I remember Marie, Matthew and I went to Kings Cross (I don’t remember if Sharon was with us or not) but I do remember I was 18 but didn’t have any ID and the only place we could get into to buy alcohol was this strip club – it was a bit nasty but we got cheap drinks. We didn’t stay in there for long. I just remember Marie sitting there and she took out her camera and was going to start taking photos of the girls stripping and Matthew and I jumped up and screamed “NO MARIE” - she does the weirdest things sometimes. I’m not into Kings Cross it feels a bit like the Western Suburbs to me – I just feel it’s just pornographic stores, strip clubs and drugs. It’s not classy – it’s trashy – I’m not into trashy. I only like trashy if it’s cool trashy and Kings Cross isn’t cool trashy – its bad trashy. The one thing I do like about Kings Cross is the history of the area; but that’s about it.

BONDI JUNCTION  

My 3 favourite places in Sydney are Newtown, Circular Quay and Bondi. Bondi is nice. I was brought up in Penrith and Bondi is so different to Penrith. You don’t hear people swearing or smashing bottles onto the ground and you don’t see as many prams being pushed. It’s just more decent. Sometimes I just get up in the morning and say “I’m going to Bondi” – I just do what I want. When you are stuck in the suburbs you just need a change of scenery otherwise you go crazy. I love beautiful places and I think Bondi is beautiful. I love the beach. I’ve been to Manly before- Manly is okay but I like Bondi more. I’ve been to the Central Coast to live (for a short time) apart from the water view and the pelicans – the Central Coast was feral and full of bogans.

I’m so lucky to have him

And I mean it every time I say it. Sure, it can be hard with distance sometimes (That we are closing after this semester!) but it’s never hard enough where I even think for a second that this isn’t worth it, especially now. Willing to work three shit jobs so my only job is continuing school, taking a 12 hour bus ride to be here for my first ultrasound. Seeing him wake up with his big eyes and pull the covers back over his head. I couldn’t think of anyone else I’d want to raise a child with. 

The Hours [Without My Phone].

Today in Creative Writing we talked about the value of structure in a nonfiction piece. I thought I’d take that for a spin tonight, in a little experimental whatever-you-will here. 

Note[s]: For context before I begin, last night around right now my cell phone screen decided to quit this cruel world. Also, boy is always telling me that I need to learn to live my life so less planned. Ha! 

~~~

9:30am: Wake up and pull my laptop into bed. Revert further into the sheets. Wonder if it’s worth getting up to turn the heater on. Mourn my phone. 

10:00am: Wonder why it sounds like my roommate has taken three showers in a half hour. 

10:12am: Realize I have a class starting in an hour, so shower time it is. In the shower debate shaving my legs. Am seeing boy later in day but decide smelly soap usage a sufficient compromise. Decide to shave on Friday when weekend seems more open to adventure. 

10:45am: Make a cup of tea and take second to last slice of roommates homemade banana bread. Wonder why the cake I made Saturday night for boy, roommate and roommate’s friend doesn’t look stale. Curious. 

11:13am: Attempt to print nonfiction piece from library printers off laptop. Realize it will be $12.60 of my $17 printing budget. Send class email with draft attached. They will understand. 

11:43am: Arrive at class. Lament loss of phone. Hear about classmate’s cute waiter at happy hour last night. 

12:50pm: Admit that I’m ignorant but willing to learn how to not be a racist. Friends accept this. 

1:17pm: Two minutes late to meet boy but very impressed that he is ahead of schedule. Boy is wearing the blue-orange hoodie I like. He wants to jump around mattress store, but dutifully waits in phone store with me. 

1:45pm: Guy tries to sell my upgrade. Revelation that phone with functioning screen can be overnighted. 

2:15pm: Guy tells me when phone company calls to ask about service, that he’d appreciate a good review. I ask him how a phone company can call me when my phone isn’t working. I realize I should have majored in Philosophy all this time. 

2:45pm: Pizza bagels are procured for me and boy. Boy is very happy. 

3:03pm: One hour of boy time.

3:58pm: Boy drops me off at class. I think of witty thing to say too late. Think about texting it. Realize phone is dead. 

4:45pm: Find article on Manson murders to read while Professor diagrams sentence. Why is Manson seemingly everywhere lately? I ask myself. 

5:25pm: Realize metro card empty. Almost late for work. Realize people make really nasty or very funny faces when listening to their earbuds. 

5:50pm: Have learnt by know that soup from Panera is much faster than mac & cheese. 

6:03pm: Work begins. Spend hour writing tweets, sending emails. 

6:45pm: Accomplish goal to finish task by now. Set another goal. 

7:15pm: Accomplish goal to finish task by now. Open graduate school application. Realize everything that needs to be done. Close graduate school application. 

8:23pm: Continue watching YouTube videos. 

8:49pm: Count register. Dump coffee. Make sure haunted basement lights are turned off. Do not get too scared walking in the dark. Misremember Eleanor Rosevelt quote. Think about Tweeting it…remember. 

9:00pm: Find literary magazines in trash can under desk. Borrow a few for ride home. 

9:45pm: Workshop leaves. Realize in 3 years of working nights no one has ever offered a ride to the train station. Contemplate this while walking, wishing I had my phone to listen to anything other than my own rambling thoughts. I started a new audiobook yesterday, which I am most annoyed about. Now my Audible streak will break. I can’t tweet any more badges. 

10:00pm: Start short story from bin literary magazine whilst waiting for train. 

10:37pm: Actually really enjoy short story and arrive home, happy. 

11:00pm: Explain phone situation to roommate. Realize haven’t checked social media in two hours. Phone-less-ness already feeling a bit better. 

11:14pm: Decide to write blog post. 

3000- The Icarus Account

I’ve spent all 3000 of these lonely miles
Thinking about you
I’ve spent all 21 of these painful hours
Reliving our goodbye
I’ll spend all of my nights hoping that you will call
‘Cause You’re worth waking up for

I’ve climbed all 40 steps of this concrete staircase
Is your future the same as mine
I’ve framed all 23 of my pictures of us
So please don’t forget me
And I’ll spend all three months of this next semester
Waiting for Christmas time

Don’t crack smiles for three months time
Don’t shed a tear from your eyes
Without me there by your side
Without me there by your side

And I’m missing your smile and the look in your eyes
And even the dinners for two
And on all the weekends I go to the movies
And still buy a seat for you
And I still fall asleep hoping that you will call
Cause you’re worth waking up for
Worth packing up for
Worth being late for
Worth staying faithful
Worth being alone for
Worth acting dumb for
And worth coming home for
And I can’t wait to see you again
I can’t wait to see you again
I can’t wait to see you again
I can’t wait no I can’t wait so

Don’t crack smiles for three months time
Don’t shed a tear from your eyes
Without me there by your side
Without me there by your side

I’ve spent all 3000 of these anxious miles
Hoping you feel the same
I’ve spent all 21 of these drawn out hours
imagining our first sight