Category Archives: Life

An age old question.

When I was in my teenage years, it used to be the case that I had more guyfriends than I had girlfriends but these days, it would seem that there’s been a bit of a reversal. I used to find that being a friend with a member of the opposite sex was a simpler more comfortable kind of relationship than those relationships I had with people of the same sex. There was less pressure to act a particular way for fear of judgment and while this is still true to some extent today, I’m finding that the majority of my good friends are female rather than male. I can be as goofy and dopey as I like with my girlfriends but I seriously miss the uncomplicated male friendships that I used to have. This got me wondering, am I subconsciously afraid or at least more wary of men now? Can I actually maintain a healthy friendship with a man without ever wanting it to go further?

Having battled my way through a few different romantic relationships in my post-adolescence years, I think that it’s really tainted the way that I now relate to men and how easily I can befriend them. I don’t want to consume men the way I consume ice-cream but when I do meet a new man who has the potential to be a great friend, my first thought isn’t “Ok well he’s a pretty rad dude! Lets be friends.” but rather my brain goes straight to considering how compatible we could be as a couple and how good of a kisser he might be. Sure I did think about this when I was younger (I was a teenage girl after all) but it wasn’t the first thing that came to mind like it is now. A devastating realization in itself I assure you.

It really would be nice to know what’s happened to my brain over the last eight years that’s made me change my friendship tune from male to female? Sure it’s easy enough for me to relate those of the same gender but I used to hate all of the bullshit drama that would come along with being in constant contact with a bunch of girls. Being friends with a guy was just so much easier! Nevertheless, it would seem that I kind of love the drama these days. My life is so uncomplicated and boring at the moment that any excitement or drama that comes from someone else’s life is far more entertaining than anything that I can come up with on my own. However this doesn’t mean that I intentionally cause drama or insert myself where I don’t belong, it’s not my style. The thing is that lady gossip is just so much more intriguing and scandalous to listen to than man gossip (I have no doubt that there’s just as much man gossip as there is lady gossip. I’m pretty sure that men are bigger gossips than we are!)

Getting back on track. This has now got me thinking that while having a friendship with a single guy as a teenager was fairly uncomplicated and easy, having one with a single guy now would probably be more trouble than it’s worth. I get nervous and weird around some of my single guy friends (well one in particular but I won’t get into that) because I can’t help but have little daydreams about being with that person. It’s a torturous habit that will clearly never bear any fruit but I put myself through it all the same. If the situation ever eventuates that I end up dating one of my single guy friends, what happens when (not if) we break up? Do our friends have to choose sides? Is the break amicable enough to remain in the same room? DEAR GOD! Would there be “friendship assets” that we’d have to split up? He would get to see my friends but I wouldn’t get to see his or vise versa? See what I mean by it being more trouble than it’s worth?

Anyway, I’m just as confused as I was before so I’m not going to get an answer for my questions any time soon. Here’s to trying to figure it all out. Some day anyway.

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The Bridget Jones Effect.

I recently received the new Helen Fielding novel Bridget Jones: Mad About the Boy (2013) from my sister for Christmas. I haven’t read it yet (I’m currently immersed in the world of George R. R. Martin) and I haven’t read either of Fielding’s Bridget Jones predecessors but it prompted me to download the two consequent Rene Zellweger films Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001) and Bridget Jones: Edge of Reason (2004). I hadn’t seen either film in years and was greatly looking forward to snuggling down into my bed and preoccupying myself with Bridget’s verbal diarrhea, excessive drinking and chain smoking not to mention fawning over Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) and Daniel Cleaver (Hugh Grant). A little eye candy never hurt anyone.

So there I am, happily settling into the groove of the film watching Bridget (Zellweger) slopping about in her pajama’s with a glass of red wine in hand, mouthing the words to Celine Dion’s “All By Myself” when it occurs to me, dear God. That’s probably (almost definitely) going to be me. I’ve now been on the singles table for close to five years (with no future relationship prospects in sight) and have pretty much all but given up on finding my own version of Mark Darcy. I’d rather sit at home on a Saturday night and sob into my pillow while watching a hopelessly romantic film than go out and “mingle”. The mere thought of embarking on a Saturday night quest to find Mr. Right is enough to send me back into bed with a tub of ice-cream (there go my New Years Resolutions) because I know that no matter how many nights I go out, I’ll never find the man of my dreams in a bar. A truly negative outlook on the dating scene but I’m yet to be proven wrong.

I know I’m nowhere near a perfect specimen of the female form but it would be nice to find someone who says to me, and I quote Mark Darcy here, “I don’t think you’re an idiot at all. I mean, there are elements of the ridiculous about you. Your mother’s pretty interesting. And you really are an appallingly bad public speaker. And, um, you tend to let whatever’s in your head come out of your mouth without much consideration of the consequences… But the thing is, um, what I’m trying to say, very inarticulately, is that, um, in fact, perhaps despite appearances, I like you, very much. Just as you are.” (Bridget Jones’s Diary, 2001) A girl can dream.

ZERO TO HERO: 30 Days To A Better Blog.

It’s a new year and so I needed an extra little kick to get things moving for 2014. As a result of my despicable lack of ideas for posts as well as my addiction to the excellent posts on The Daily Post, I came across the Zero to Hero challenge. Thirty days of writing and blog challenges to enhance my existing blog. It sounded so good that I signed up then and there. Here’s the first challenge.

DAY 1: INTRODUCE YOURSELF

Who am I?

I’ve already given a vague introduction in my “About” pages on my blog (Who am I you ask? and Just a little more) but here’s an little something extra. I’m a 20-something-year-old single lady living in Brisbane, Australia and I’m currently half way through a Secondary Education degree with a major in English and a minor in Film & Media Studies (just in case you haven’t already figured that out). I work for a university (no, not the one I study at) as an administration officer and while I like to complain profusely about my job, I know that I probably won’t leave until I graduate from my degree at the end of 2015. The pay is just too obscenely good to give it up just yet.

Like any normal person of the female persuasion, I struggle with maintaining a “healthy” lifestyle due to my addiction to chocolate and pastries in combination with my love for sitting around watching movies and TV shows that are so bad that they’re good. I try to combat my bad habits with good ones (attempting to eat better occasionally, going to bootcamp 2-3 times a week, paying netball etc) but I tend to go through stages and there’s no point in trying to go against the tide.

Without sounding too clichéd, I have an undying love and passion for travel and exploring the unknown. If I’m not about to go on an overseas adventure, I’m usually in the stages of planning one. I love living in Brisbane but there are times when it gets a bit much. Brisbane (or Brisvegas as we locals have nicknamed it. Not sure why) is what I like to describe as a small, big city (despite it having the largest metropolitan area in the Southern Hemisphere) because everyone knows everyone. The six degrees of separation rule is in full effect here and it can feel a little claustrophobic at times. Brisvegians know what I’m taking about.

Why am I here?

Originally I started my blog as a university assignment in 2012 but once the assignment was complete I ignored my account until November 2013. Whilst trying to find ways to while away the dreary and dreadful hours at work, I stumbled upon my old, severely neglected account and figured that writing a blog was as good a way as any to help fill in my time. I started off writing small entries but then found that I had so many things I wanted to say and share with fellow bloggers. Sure I tell my tales of adventure and romance to my friends but blogging is a far more effective way for a greater global community to access my experiences and in turn, for me to access those experiences written about by other bloggers in the never-ending blogosphere.

If I’m going to be truly honest about why I’m here, it’s to see if my writing is as good as I like to think it is. I very rarely get to have my ego stroked so when I get a positive comment or a “Like” on one of my posts, I feel a great sense of validation as well as elation. There’s nothing quite like having a total stranger understand your perspective and like where you’re coming from. Keep the positivity rolling I say.

What do I want to write about?

I write about a lot of different things and I’d really like to keep it that way. I don’t want to be restricted to any one theme or topic so I’m going to avoid doing that if I can. I’ve read a bunch of different blogs that have been designed around a specific topic (photography, food etc) but I’ve found that the ones I enjoy reading the most are those bloggers who write about the everyday. They impart their personal experiences about relationships, work, travel and just life in general with witty little quips that have kept me entertained for hours (props to you Aussa Lorens with your HACKER. NINJA. HOOKER. SPY. tales). In terms of my own writing and posts, I hope that people find them as entertaining to read as I do when I write them. I suppose that as 2014 flies past us, a greater theme will emerge within my writing and topics. Being an English and Film Studies student, I think that it’s best to assume that there’s going to be a great many posts about films I’ve seen and popular culture as well as any other random thought that worms its way out of the depths of my brain.

What do I want to accomplish by writing a blog?

By writing a blog, I hope to impart some kind of wisdom or at least entertain the illusion of being a little bit wise in my 20’s. I want to be able to look back at what I’ve written and think “I make a good point” or “That was a surprisingly good topic of thought”. I want to be able to inspire others to further their writing and express their ideas in a safe environment where you’re free to say whatever you feel like at that particular moment. By the end of 2014, I hope to be able to look back and say “I pushed myself with this one thing and it paid off”. My blog is only in its infancy so there’s ample space and time for me to be able to expand my thoughts and ideas while also participating in the global community that blogging has manifested. Simply put, I just want to have a voice. In the word’s of Girls (2012) creator Lena Dunham “I don’t want to freak you out, but I think I may be the voice of my generation. Or at least a voice, of a generation.”

Where to begin?

Guilt. Where does one even begin to explain it, describe it or attempt to conquer it? G-U-I-L-T. It’s a terrible, terrible emotion that plagues on my sense of self-worth, my sense of goodness and my all round sense of happiness. It makes me feel bad about not doing something or festers for so long in my over-crowded head that I end up participating in something I would have been better off avoiding. It’s a fat, slimy worm of an emotion that slowly but surely eats away at the softest parts of my soul and leaves me empty and twitching with a knot the size of a rockmelon in the pit of my stomach. I feel guilty about so many things that I don’t even know where to begin. Even those things that I find pleasurable and have no self control over make me feel guilty! I feel guilty that my brother got me a decent gift for Christmas (there really is a first time for everything!) when all I gave him was a yo-yo and the book he gave me last year (It was a joke. Promise). I feel guilty about having neglected my blog for so long over the holiday period. I feel guilty about downloading pirated movies and TV shows from the Internet. I feel guilty about eating that chocolate bar and not doing any form of exercise to compensate. I JUST FEEL SO GODDAMN GUILTY! I think I need to do something about this guilt before it completely consumes me. The beginning of a new year seems like as good a time as any. Time for an explosive bomb dive into a guiltless existence.

Now guilt is no easy thing to combat. I feel like there’s always going to be something out there that’s going to make my stomach churn and my heart rate increase simply because I might regret that particular decision or indeed, that act of indecision. Anyway, I’ve been thinking about it and it occurred to be that I can absolutely reduce my sense of guilt and perhaps even beat it altogether. Recently I was talking to a friend over a delightful café breakfast and she suggested a “Year of Yes” where I do nothing but say yes to things all year long; the only exception is if the event is already clashing with a prior engagement. To a shut-in and home-body like me, the thought of saying yes to every single proposition scares the bejesus out of me not to mention my bank account. In theory, it’s an excellent idea and will definitely increase both my social life and livelihood (to an extent) but how realistic is it for me? With work, uni and travels in the works, I don’t think I’m a financially viable candidate for a “Year of Yes” so instead, I’m just going to make a bigger effort to put myself out there and actively participate in life rather than deciding to be a hermit and watch things on my laptop (a pleasurable past-time that makes me feel guilty). For example, I’m currently at work (first day back for 2014) and I’ve been invited to attend a Pool & BBQ Party afterwards. My lazy and antisocial self wants nothing more than to just go home, have a shower and curl up in bed with my dog to watch Girls (2012), Teen Wolf (2011) or some other equally good but bad TV series. This, however. shall not come to pass. I’m going to go home, get changed, buy some drinks and food and then head over to my friends house to hang out with them. I will be a social person and I will have a good time. That’s the plan and I’m going to try my darndest to continue this particular trend all year long. Hopefully more often than not it’s going to be to my benefit rather than my detriment but I guess I’ll just have to wait and see.

Here’s to 2014, a “Year of More Yes’s than No’s”.

I resolve to create resolutions, nothing more.

WHAT?! It’s the end of another year you say? That just cannot be! It was only March three weeks ago I swear!

Seriously though, where has 2013 gone? As 2014 is now well and truly breathing its rancid breath down our necks and it’s time for that New Years right of passage where we write down our “Resolutions” only to forget about them a week later. I’ve never really been one to participate in this particular New Years tradition but I thought I’d just write down a few anyway. I figure that by putting it in my blog, there’s going to be an everlasting, digital copy that I won’t be able to escape and must, therefore, attempt to stick to it. All I now need to do is come up with a list of reasonably achievable resolutions. It shouldn’t be too difficult, right? Here’s goes nothing.

2014 NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS

1. Increase my current University GPA by at least 3 or more points.

2. Save more money and stop spending it all on iTunes.

3. Cut out soft drink and unnecessary sugar.

4. Ask a person of the male persuasion out on a date of some description.

5. Be a little less hostile when it comes to change in the workplace. (I need to take things less personally)

6. Review more films and TV shows on my blog.

7. See more live music, comedy and theatrical shows.

And that’s as far as I got. From what I know of other peoples’ lists, the ones that I’ve listed are pretty standard so there’s nothing very exciting about them. I really should make more of an effort to be a little more creative with my resolutions.

Once upon a time in my bright white office…

… I got so incredibly and frustratingly bored that I chucked an epic hissy fit just for something to do. Phones were pegged at the wall, paper was off-loaded into the air and general screaming and swearing ensued with intermittent sobbing and floor-crumpling. I was the prime example of a toddler who, for the first time in their short, short life, has been told ‘no’ and only just seems to comprehend its full implications.

Well, not really but I’m seriously on the verge. Uni finished for the year about two months ago and as such, I’ve been working full-time to help while away the hours and earn a little extra cash so I can actually afford to travel through the U.S next year. I work from 7.45am until 4pm with an hour for lunch at a rate of approximately $35 an hour so it really doesn’t seem that bad and I shouldn’t complain. There are plenty of people out there struggling to find work and while my rational brain knows and accepts this, my irrational brain can only cling to the fact that I literally have NOTHING to do, am bored beyond belief and that this boredom is due to continue well into January 2014. I have no doubt that my friends are seriously sick of my continued complaining about work but try as I might, I can’t seem to steer myself away from it for an entire conversation. A simple “Work’s fine thanks” should suffice but instead I delve into a rant about how bored I am and how there’s absolutely nothing I can do about it. A bit like I’m doing at the moment actually. Sorry. I will say this though, thank God for the internet and those people who release their books online for people like me to read while at work. George R. R. Martin: You’re keeping me sane and occupied with your treason filled, murderous, incestuous and soft porn stories.

Anyway, I’ll try and stop complaining. I will, however, divulge the circumstances that have lead to my current employment displeasure. Now I’ve been working for the same university in the same office for close to three years (a personal record I might add) and it’s been one of the best jobs I’ve ever had. I used to get up in the morning and not mind having to go into work because I worked with people who a) were super fun, b) got the job done no matter what while also having a laugh along the way and c) were just a pleasure to work with as part of a fun, cohesive and highly-productive team. The cracks at the seam began to appear when the university started going through rounds of redundancies. They weren’t entirely unexpected and I’m sure we’ve all noticed the redundancy trend that’s been making its way through other multiple industries and companies this year but when you work so successfully in an existing team, surely they wouldn’t screw it up by forcing people out. I could not have been more wrong. I’m one of the last standing members of our original administration office and the university, in terms of staff morale and productivity, have gone downhill fast. Throughout the course of the redundancies, I lost my wonderful colleagues, my desk and my employment responsibility and drive. By employment responsibility and drive I mean that I’m no longer required to manage the same number of tasks that I had become accustomed to (and ridiculously good at) and as such, am now hopelessly under appreciated and utilized in my office. What really gets my goat is that I know how awesome my office used to be and it makes me so sad to see just how far we’ve sunk into the boggy mess that is a dispirited and depressing workplace. On top of all of this, there is little to no love for the new Campus Director so staff members are even grumpier than normal and there’s no sense of community any more. The new Campus Director is of the opinion that if it’s not in your job description, you can’t be expected to do it and with this mentality and approach to work, there’s no way that any admin task gets done by the required deadline. I’ve gone so far as to go outside of my ‘official job description’ just so the work gets done because I feel like if I don’t do it, no-one will. I’m getting to the point now where, upsetting as it is to think about, I need to start looking for a new job. What used to be an excellent place to work has transformed into something that is slowly but surely eating away at my soul.

Rant end.

And the 10 finalists are…

As the year is quickly drawing to a close, I thought that this is as good a time as any to reflect on the last twelve months. Like with the years that have preceded 2013, there have been high highs and low lows which have allowed the days to pass me by in a flash. The post high school time speed up really isn’t so much a myth but more a general consensus felt by my friends and I because the older we get and the further away from high school, the faster the years seem to go by. Nevertheless, there have been many momentous occasions this year and I think that this is a good opportunity for me to list my top 5 and 10’s. There are a few different categories but like with any list maker worth their salt, they will be appropriately labeled so here goes. Just note that obviously these lists are only for what I have experienced. There will no doubt be much disagreement with some of them. Also, try not to judge me too harshly. I have a lot of guilty pleasures.

TOP 10 WINNING MOMENTS OF 2013

1. The day my friends, James and Kayla, got engaged at the top of a mountain. (I CANNOT WAIT FOR THE WEDDING IN JUNE 2014!)

2. Surprising one of my most excellent friends, Tiffany Winteler, at the airport upon her return from 6 months in Munich (There was a glitter covered sign, a shocked expression and tears. Priceless.)

3. Going on my first ever high school prac at Centenary State High School as part of my Secondary Education degree. (Teaching Year 12 English and then having a Year 12 boy come up to me and thank me on behalf of his classmates. Validation at last!)

4. Finding out that fans raised enough money to finance the Veronica Mars movie due to be released in 2014.

5. Finding, booking and paying for cheap flights to the U.S for a month in June/July 2014. ($AU1400 return. America come at me!)

6. Running my first 10km fun run in under 50 minutes (Bridge to Brisbane 2013) and completing the “Happiest 5km run in the world” (Gold Coast Colour Run 2013).

7. Seeing King Kong on stage in Melbourne. (He’s a 2 tonne puppet! AH-FREAKING-MAZING!)

8. Starting to write my blog and having complete strangers like what I’m writing.

9. Turning 26 and having a onesie party. (It was pure, unadulturated fun and I recommend that everyone try it!)

10. Getting my paws, claws, hair and make-up done for Gala on the Green. (I felt a bit like a movie star wearing my glamourous dress and jewellery. Just sayin’.)

TOP 10 FAILS OF 2013

1. Failing a take-home university test on TV genres by second guessing myself and submitting the second version of my answers instead of the first version with the correct answers. (Doh!)

2. Doing broad jumps at bootcamp carrying 20kg. (My back is still suffering the consequences 3 weeks later. I can only blame myself.)

3. Constantly having to dip into my savings because I under-estimate how much money I spend on a fortnightly basis. (Whoops!)

4. Not being able to convince my parents to take me on their month-long Greek/Turkish holiday.

5. Still having to live at home with the olds.

6. Continuing to work for a company that I no longer enjoy working for. (The money is just too good to pass up.)

7. Feeling like I’m stuck in the blackhole that is Brisbane. (I do love living here but sometimes I just really need to escape!)

8. Not paying better attention to/not really caring what I’m eating.

9. Allowing myself to be consumed by new TV episodes on iTunes rather than by my university work.

10. Witnessing Miley Cyrus gyrate and twerk while repeatedly exposing her tonsils to onlookers during her performance at the 2013 VMAs. (What was seen cannot be unseen.)

TOP 10 FILMS OF 2013 (CINEMA & DVD RELEASES)

*NB: It’s not the end of the year yet and there were a few films that I haven’t had a chance to see just yet (ie. Anchorman 2, Argo, American Hustle, Gravity etc)

1. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (Director: Francis Lawrence With: Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson)

2. Warm Bodies (Director: Jonathan Levine With: Nicolas Holt, Teresa Palmer, John Malcovich)

3. Enough Said (Director: Nicole Holofcener With: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, James Gandolfini)

4. Furious 6 (Director: Justin Lin With: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson)

5. Iron Man 3 (Director: Shane Black With: Robert Downey Jr, Gwyneth Paltrow, Guy Pearce)

6. Sound City (Director: Dave Grohl)

7. The Heat (Director: Paul Feig With: Sandra Bullock, Michael McDonald, Melissa McCarthy)

8. The Family (Director: Luc Besson With: Robert De Niro, Michelle Pfeiffer, Diana Agron, John D’Leo)

9. Now You See Me (Director: Louis Leterrier With: Jesse Eisenberg, Common, Mark Ruffalo)

10. Thor: Dark World (Director: Alan Taylor With: Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Tom Hiddleston)

TOP 10 TV SERIES WATCHED/WATCHING IN 2013

1. Game of Thrones, Season 3

2. Supernatural, Season 9

3. Veronica Mars, Season 1-3

4. Grey’s Anatomy, Season 10

5. Elementary, Season 1-2

6. The Walking Dead, Season 4

7. Vampire Diaries, Season 5

8. The Originals, Season 1

9. The Carries Diaries, Season 2

10. Hart of Dixie, Season 3

TOP 5 LIVE ACTS I SAW IN 2013

1. Adam Hills “Happyism” @ The Brisbane Convention Centre

2. Taylor Swift’s RED Tour @ Suncorp Stadium

3. Arj Barker’s “Go Time” @ The Brisbane Powerhouse

4. Dead Letter Circus @ The Tempo

5. TBA… (I really should have thought this out better)

TOP 10 SONGS I LISTENED TO THE MOST IN 2013

*The songs were’t necessarily released in 2013. There are a couple of oldies in there.

1. Red – Taylor Swift

2. Clarity – Zedd featuring Foxes

3. Asleep – Emily Browning (from the Sucker Punch Soundtrack)

4. Work B**ch – Britney Spears

5. Someone To Love – Havana Brown

6. Of The Night – Bastille

7. Buses and Trains – Bachelor Girl

8. Get Lucky – Daft Punk

9. The Wire – HAIM

10. Blue (Da Ba Dee) – Eiffel 65

I could go on and on, making more and more lists but I suspect that there are only so many that people actually tolerate reading in one post. For now, I’ll leave the rest of my lists for future posts and leave you with a parting thought: What were your lists for 2013?