Sausage Joose

I was depressed to be leaving Australia, but it’s best to leave when you’re having the time of your life. 

The novelty of my living situation had nearly worn off as I sorted through the sausage-joose infused dishes towering in the sink. The illogical stack was almost artistic and I laughed as loogies slid from plates.
I think I volunteered to clean the kitchen because I knew I was the only one who would do it well enough to avoid a fee, but being veegs I don’t usually have to deal with so much sausage joose.
Tree on a bush-walk.
It’s as if all my roommates have been doing is burning sausage into pans and squeezing it over every single item in the kitchen. Liz (roommate 4), dealt with an emotional arch about the state of the kitchen, and had resorted to eating microwaved Easy-Mac MIXED WITH microwaved chicken ramen, using only our immense, stained and plastic bowl for almost every meal. On the rare occasion that meal did not comprise breakfast, lunch, or dinner, she went to unit 50 to cook in Taryn’s kitchen.
(Power Station)
In a stroke of good/bad luck Romy and I found a new set of pans by the side of the road, along with our new best friend the SUN HORSE (a giant empty corn-oil tub that emitted beautiful noises when struck). It was good luck because all of our pans have had their handles broken off  long ago, and burn one’s fingers every time they’re put to use, AKA every mealtime. It was good luck because now we won’t be charged for breaking our pans. It was bad luck because we could only enjoy them for a few days, but in those few days Jake (Roommate 2) burnt popcorn and sausage into them.  
Me leaving the country
 By the time I was done cleaning caked sausage fat off of a shot glass, I’m pretty sure the novelty had completely worn off – just in time for me to split the country.
“This kitchen is so filthy, I’m leaving the country.”
“The surf’s not great today, that’s it, I’m leaving the country.”
“Adhit, your puns are so bad, I’m leaving the country.”
So I did. 
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Business Card

If someone gave me a business card that said nothing but their name and the word/s: COYOTEKING I would:
a) Punch them in the face and steal their identity
b) Strip off their poncho and take them then and there.
c) Walk backwards in slow-motion into the woods.
d) Invite them to go bushdancing.

Intro

“I could use a freelance shaman such as yourself to guide me through the spirit realm when I get lost following blue-lantern-carrying gnomes.” These were the words Adhit played to initiate our relationship. When we first met we went skinny-dipping in the rain and ate bruschetta. When we last met we swam in the ocean and ate bruschetta.  

The last time we met was the last time we met. Driving on sunlit mountain roads we listened to Black Noise by Pantha Du Prince, and I was happy to think this detailed sculpture of sound would become associated with such scenery – that and an earlier time, lying with towels over our heads, admiring the visuals. It’s the kind of music that takes your layers of stress and woe and strips them away.
Arriving at Royal National Park we found no one to take our $12, and high-fived over the saved money for beer. The landscape made me feel as if I was in a dream, so now I can finally share a few pictures from my dreams.
Adhit has begun keeping a dream journal and talked about labyrinths, ice and water. I told him about a dream where he and I were swimming in a large clear pool at twilight. Before entering the water his towels were their usual blue, but afterward they had become inhabited by dolphins.
One of Adhit’s favorite albums is XX by The XX, he says it’s a perfect album and has a sexy and nocturnal atmosphere. The first time we hung out was the first time I heard The XX. The first time I visited him in Wollongong we listened to XX across starry skies and mountain Highways.
Visiting Adhit in Wollongong, the stormy weather didn’t keep us from the ocean, although lifeguards and violent waves kicked us out of the water itself. This time, after a week of rain the sun broke through, just making everything as clear and bright as I’ve ever seen. The waves at the beach were glass and broke perfectly. After the beach we had Swell coffee. Then we went to the beach. We almost went to the beach again after we went to the beach again, but then went to the Harbor.
In between making super-dad puns and reminiscing, Adhit and I spoke about how we had encapsulated a perfect relationship. When the end of a semester comes, everyone tends to feel nostalgic for a class, reflect positively on what was learned, and almost wish it wouldn’t end. Everyone signs up for classes knowing they’ll end, but people don’t tend to enter relationships that way. That’s the beauty of what Adhit and I shared, every time we met we made the most of it because we knew the day we would never see one another again was imminent.
In the evening Adhit’s mom made grilled eggplant with zaatar (that’s the name of the new kind of sauce) and we all shared beer. Although sleep would be ending at 7:30am, it did not begin until 2:30am. 
As always, Adhit awoke me with perfect tea and breakfast. We listened to “Intro” by The XX as we hugged goodbye.

Can You See Me Now?

I slouched through the rain to get to the train and hung my tail between my legs for three hours and eight dollars to go surfing in Manly. Halfway through the two-hour bus ride of broken ipod, thoughts on the negative side of the coherence spectrum, and the positive side of the self-deprecation spectrum, I realized I could not see reality. This is because I have an extra-excitable visual cortex, and when a mysterious set of circumstances combine I get migraines.

My migraines have beautiful visuals. As my migraine expanded on the bus I took note of the colors and drew a picture of the vibrant vibrating blind spot. 
Once I got to the beach I told the surf instructors that I couldn’t see properly and wouldn’t be able to surf.  One jumped around saying: “Can you see me now?” We re-scheduled for the following Tuesday.
I promised myself I would get to sleep by midnight on Monday night. I keep getting caught in the undertow of time though, and in twenty minutes two hours would pass. As I made quesadillas with the rest of my capsicum, onion, beans, garlic, scallions, tortillas and salsa an audience from “Café Jake” filtered in with hungry scarlet eyes. Romy and I entertained them with our Dadaist commentary as I fed them the rest of my groceries.
By the blazing sun of 8:00 am I was unsure of how I could transfer my surfing skills from the dreamtime to reality, but assumed coffee would help. Amped on the bus I reflected on the heaps of offerings I’ve recieved from Australia. By the time I was practicing standing up on the board I realized that each time I stood I would come closer to passing out. I was a messy mixture of sleep-deprivation and dehydration and had to forsake my last surfing adventure. Once again I failed, tail between my legs. Opportunity gone, day wasted.
By the time I was back on the endless hours of public transit I was less dizzy and tired of feeling wretched. I decided to stop feeling bad and wrote out ideas for projects I’m working on. I get so attached to perfection that I forget it’s subjective, and that I am always in control of how I react to things. I try so hard to be good, but there’s no good or bad. The truth isn’t a thing. In the evening Romy and I meditated.

Losing Consciousness

I want to go to bed on fresh clean sheets with a good smell and stretch my legs and back so luxuriously before drifting into the pure light of sleep.

You can die while you’re still alive. You can completely lose the person you’ve been from brain injury or disease. You can lose all your memories, or lose the ability to form new memories; your personality can dramatically change.
It scares me to think that the things that make me me can be taken away in an instant. It makes me feel sad that all my precious memories will be gone. If I were to die now I don’t think I’d be cool enough to simply dissolve my energy into a rainbow and leave my organs as jewels or something

Death is probably messy and awkward. I imagine it being uncomfortable and disorienting. Ever since I’ve been aware of mortality I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about it, but recently, probably due to learning so much about dementia and traumatic brain injury, I’ve felt less at peace with the idea.
What can I do about it though? I’ve got to work on feeling less attached. I want to have a feeling like I’m a ball of light. Like it doesn’t matter. 

Inherently Sad

 

Romy and I saw Autoluminescent, a movie about Rowland S. Howard, and bonded over his attractive sadness. The pinnacle quote of the film for me, spoken by Rowland with a long-ashed cigarette hanging from his lips, was about how he couldn’t fathom thinking about life as anything other than inherently sad.
I’ve never been afraid of sadness. One of my talents is to go deeply into it, without hiding from any portion of the feeling. I’ve wept with such force that everything was the most beautiful it had ever been.
Romy is one of the first people I’ve met who will talk about sadness in the same way I do: as something that adds richness to life. People who aren’t afraid of sadness tend to have the best senses of humor.

jounral

 

Monday 14/11/11

* Spent the day in the music lab working on the coolest and most creative DJ set, with the best transitions in the world.
* It’s that poignant end-of-the-semester time, especially since I won’t see my excellent professors, tutors, and internship supervisors again. Chris Walker said it was nice to meet me and I thanked him for his help over the semester. We chatted about music-neuroscience, and I left feeling sad that I won’t be living in the music lab for very much longer.

* Ran into my black metal friend Christian at the train station. We shared a joyful hug and made plans to break into the pool late at night
 * I spent the rest of the day at the salon with Gen, who brought my hair back to its natural silvery-white color. Once again there was the poignant almost-the-end feeling. Gen said she would have to find a new muse once I left.
* In the evening I did a small catwalk and reaped the free snacks and liquor.
* Romy and I decided we needed more snacks and liquor and went to Woolworth’s. We had a walking picnic with white wine and an apple.  

Tuesday 15/11/11

* Spent the day in the music lab working on the coolest and most creative DJ set, with the best transitions in the world.

Wednesday 16/11/11

* Spent the day in the music lab working on the coolest and most creative DJ set, with the best transitions in the world.
* Romy came over and we stayed up late.

Thursday 17/11/11 
* Woke up with dark beasts for eyes.
* Had some coffee.
* Spent the day fine tuning the coolest and most creative DJ set with the best transitions in the world.
* Turned in DJ set.
* Spent night studying for neuroscience final, when I got bored with that I made a cake.

This is Why I’m Rich

Remember how I was going on about scraping it kind of thin on bus fare? There are several techniques I’ve worked out for getting reduced transit prices. It’s easy on the train, because you just tell the machine you are a student and you are going to Chatswood, even though you’re going to Newtown. Chatswood costs a dollar sixty to get to with the student discount, and Newtown costs $2.30, but there are no ticket gates at Newtown, so you only need the ticket to get through on the Macquarie side. Technically study abroad students aren’t allowed student discounts so if you’re not sneaky and dishonest like me you’ll be a chump and you’ll be paying $4.60 just to get to Newtown.

It’s trickier to get a student discount on the bus because it’s easy to spot a North American accent, and you have to show a real-life bus driver a student-concession card. My first technique to evade this was to fake an Australian accent. “G’day” I would say, and I would automatically get a discount – probably because I looked like a poor American trying to get concession by faking an Australian accent. I then upgraded to a three step system: 1) State Destination 2) Hand over exact discounted fare 3) Search in wallet for “concession card” and vaguely wave some other card.
The best way to get discounted bus fare is a recent discovery. 1) Wear a paper crown. 2) Carry a cupcake. 3) The bus driver thinks it’s your birthday and lets you on for free.