Sunday, November 17, 2013

Passions - urgh, the word makes my skin crawl.

I study history and slavistic - which is basically a mix of slavic languages, things that happened in the past and extremely limited job opportunities in the future. I love history though. I've loved it ever since I picked up my first Horrible histories book and have secretly wanted to study it ever since I saw Ms Grenache desperately trying to talk people into taking history as an elective rather than choosing sports science like everyone was planning, she had a powerpoint and I could name every historical figure and date on it - it was then I decided my olympic shotput career was going to have to be put on hold: History was calling. I love learning about things that happened 100 years ago that have since been completely forgotten by all but a few - a few who have then decided to dedicate their careers to studying some obscure event most have never heard of - let alone care to learn about...but mostly I like history because I'm good at it. I remember dates and I have a knack for boring people with obscure facts that they could really have survived without.

But I had other hobbies (I'd say 'passions' but it's inaccurate and it's one of those words (like 'moist') that makes my skin crawl) growing up, mostly I've dumped them to allow time for drinking and spending far too much time on trains, but at least I tried.

1. I used to do tap, jazz and ballet. I know it's hard to imagine that this talented dancer took lessons for around 8 years - but I did. Mostly mum bribed me into going to dance class with horse riding lessons and shiny swarovski things - she had to - I hated the costumes, the teachers, the other girls and most of all I hated dancing. I was rubbish at it too, I can't think of a single time I was in the front row - and considering I was always the shortest.... Krystal and I set the dance room on fire once. Well, almost - sparks were flying. Some irresponsible adult left frayed electrical cords dangling right next to a socket...what were two seven year olds supposed to do? Lose out on an opportunity to cause fireworks and possibly cancel dance class? Never. So I dared Krystal to shove the cords in the socket and she did...the lights went out and sprayed sparks everywhere - our teacher made a strangled squeal and rushed us al out of the room - success! Krystal's parents later asked her if she'd jumped off a cliff because I told her to - answer? Probably, but only if it meant Ms. Lombardo would have to give up on ballet lessons for the week and send us all home early (she sent Krys and I away with the dance school's first ever strike - "strike two and you're out!") Luckily, my electrical safety skills have greatly improved since then - my dance skills however - have not.

2. I played the violin for a while. I sounded like I was strangling a cat for about six months there - but in the two years that I played I'd like to think I got better - then I switched to the trumpet for a week, then to the oboe, then back to the violin before settling for singing because well, my friends were doing it and I was not immune to peer pressure.

3. Singing. I was much better at that. Although how good is difficult to say: I once got a last minute audition with the Australian youth opera - sounds more impressive than it was. I forgot to put in a request for an audition because I thought they were open and I only got one by default when another girl cancelled - shows my dedication really. I learned my song that day, wandered into the waiting room and immediately realised I was out of my depth. I was surrounded by prissy, pretentious prima donnas practising their scales. I kind of coughed a bit, prayed for the best and waddled into the audition room trying to look prim. Unfortunately I was so concentrated on trying not to look like a lost child in a school uniform among a sea of girls in formal dresses with their hair and makeup done, that I forgot to sing. Luckily, the old dude running the auditions forgave me and let me mess up the song a further three times before he started to interview me. He asked me my name, I asked him his - the whole audition board laughed hysterically...that old guy? Richard Gill - Head of Opera Australia. My bad. He then asked me about my favourite operas and singers - I'd never seen an opera and my knowledge of opera singers was limited to Pavarotti - and by that I mean I knew his name...So I told the truth. I told him that I didn't listen to opera and I didn't really plan on starting. I told him that I was listening to the Presets and System of a down on the way to the audition and that I really liked Rise Against's new album. Needless to say, he was a little confused.

Somehow I didn't get into the youth opera...probably for the best.

Hope all is well.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Life's necessities.

Pascal and I have been together for over a year now, the honeymoon period is over and we are beginning to notice some of each other's stranger habits. The list of Pascal's weirdness goes on and  on: he is the CatMan. Cats love him in a sick and unnatural way - even Bubba who is quite possibly the hatiest kitty ever throws himself at him. Pascal eats like a machine and always keeps a periodic table on him - Then there's his chest hair: it's Batman-symbol shaped - he's extremely proud of that... but for now, he'd like me to focus on my oddities - so here they are:

1. I must sleep with my ears covered. I'm not quite sure why, I assume it's because growing up, I was a little obsessesed with this short-lived TV show "Animorphs," ( ) where a bunch of teenagers met some friendly aliens (for no apparent reason) and were given superpowers which allowed them to transform into any animal that they focussed upon. These powers then helped them save the world from the evil aliens who'd put mind-control slugs into people's ears whilst they slept...icky right? So now, 14 years later I still think about that at night and have to keep my ears hidden between pillows, doona and hair. Pascal thinks it's amusing to uncover my ears whilst I sleep, therefore leaving me vulnerable to alien slug attack. Ass.

2. I am still afraid of the dark. So much so that I double check my closet is tightly shut at night and run to my bed once the lights are off in order to hide under the doona for a bit (till I think the coast is clear). I'd say this is embarrassing but it could be worse. I cried in front of a bunch of ten-year olds last year at Christmas because I was cold. Sure I was 18 at the time and was wearing four pairs of thermal socks and two whole ski suits over one another (I looked like Frosty the snowman) - but my toes were sore from the cold and those kids looked far too hardy to be 10...I regret nothing.

3. Anything that is to be eaten with a spoon will be done so with a teaspoon. I don't like big spoons. They're plotting something. Just like people who don't drink and those who prefer riding a bike to walking/catching a bus.

4. There is nothing creepier than the intro to EA Games - the one where it's all a bit too quiet and then some horrible voodoo group chant EA GAMES before a hellish voice comes out of nowhere and whispers "Challenge everything." ( ) It's the stuff of nightmares I swear. I used to turn on my playstation and then leave the room until I felt the intro had passed - in fact I still leave the room if I feel there is any risk of hearing that...

There's more but I feel I've written enough about myself for today. So I'll leave you with a completely inaccurate joke:

How many redheads does it take to change a lightbulb?
None. They prefer to sit in the dark.

As long as that dark isn't infested with monsters, mind-control slugs or gamers.

Hope all is well.