Daily Prompt: Land of Confusion

Which subject in school did you find impossible to master? Did math give you hives? Did English make you scream? Do tell!

I. loathed. highschool.

It was bad enough being stuck in some backwater country town being bullied everyday, let alone having to deal with the fuckwits that surrounded me, and their lack of intelligence. But the cherry on top was having to pick subjects at the end of each year for the following year. How on earth was I able to committ myself to a subject for 6-12months at a time?

I hated Geography, History and Social Studies. I thought they were all completely pointless subjects for me. I excelled at Drama, Computer Studies, English and Food Tech – although I soon discovered that even my favourite subjects were quite limiting in what they taught me. The syllabus for each subject was a set standard, but fuck me it was so basic!! But I guess when writing a syllabus for anything you really do need to accomodate for the lowest. common. denominator. in the classroom. It sounds mean to say, but let’s face it, there are plenty of kids out there who are just way too fucking stupid. I, unfortunately, always seemed to end up with most of them in my classes.

These were the kids who were always trying to destroy things. The kids who thought it was a good idea to throw pots of Clag (glue) at the fans, so it would explode on contact, and spray glue all over the entire classroom, and everything (and everyone!) in it’s path. And if it wasn’t glue, it was a banana, or small water balloons full of any conceivable form of liquid ranging from water, to milk, to lube, to honey, and even peanut butter.

yes. I said lube. It was disgusting.

The really depressing part of this was that they were still doing stupid shit like this in years 11 and 12 (senior years). Having that as a constant distraction also made it really hard to concentrate on actually learning anything, because we were always in constant fear of what was going to explode in today’s lesson… Some people even started keeping an extra uniform in their locker as a safety precaution.

Do you know how hard it is to get lubricant stains out of a woolen blazer??

And the worst part is, they rarely got in trouble for it. As a result, the entire class would receive lunchtime detentions. Nobody dared dob them in because they’d get beaten up at somepoint, or ridiculed / humiliated in front of the rest of the school. Those of us who refused to participate in detentions for their childish behaviour ended up getting additional detentions… because there’s clearly so much logic in that way of thinking!

I think the absolute worst subject that I had was English. I know, I know, I said before that I loved English, but by the time I got to high school and had to choose all my subjects for my Higher School Certificate (HSC) the only subject which was compulsory was English. I think most of us were quite surprised that maths wasn’t compulsory either, and so many of us revelled in the thought of never having to hear our boring maths teacher harp on about trigonometry or Pythagoras’ theorem.

Our school, however, had other ideas. They actually scheduled the timetable so that everybody had to pick maths as a subject, even though it wasn’t compulsory.

For those of you unfamiliar with how the HSC was structured back then, it went like this.

– To gain your HSC, you need to complete (minimum) 10 subject units, but preferably twelve subject units.

– Majority of subjects were all two-unit subjects. However, there were also a few three-unit and four-unit subjects as well (the higher the number, the more advanced the subject). There were also a number of smaller one-unit subjects that were studied either for Year 11 only or for one semester of year 12.

– Our year 11 only went for 3 terms. Year 12 began in Term 4 of that year, and finished in Term 3 of the following year. We then had something like 4-5 weeks off before exams. Due to all the subjects that I had, my exams were all the last exams of the period, so I ended up with almost 2 months off (7 weeks) before exams.

– Due to timetabling conflicts, some subjects were run offline. This meant that they were scheduled either before or after school, or during lunch-times. This would also mean that those people enrolled in such subjects had more free (ie. study) time during the regular school day and were expected to be found in the Library.

Out of all the topics I studied for my HSC, I think the one I hated the most, was Maths. I was always of the view that I didn’t need to know advanced mathematical equations, trigonometry or Pyathagoras etc, as it didn’t apply to my future career aspirations. I wanted to be a dancer, and all I need to know maths-wise, was how to calculate how much money I’d earnt, how to calculate my tax, and how to determine the floor-space of a studio. That was pretty much it.

However, the most disappointing was English. I had originally elected to study the 3-unit English syllabus, but as only they only accepted limited spaces for the first class, the leftovers were fed into any other english classes that had free spaces. Some got into the more advanced 2-unit english class… whereas some of us, landed in the more remedial english class ie: Veggie English. I can’t remember why it was called that, but all the dumbasses were in there – hence the constant barrage of objects at ceiling fans!!

Then there was Business Studies… a month or so before we break for our FINAL exams, our teacher informs us that we’ve been learning the wrong part of the syllabus. Apparently there was a change in content, but our school wasn’t informed of this, and we were in fact almost four months BEHIND where we were supposed to be. Almost half the content that was going to be in the exam, wasn’t what we’d been covering in class.

*sigh* awesome.

In the last week before we went on our leave, our teacher handed up an entire stack of papers – notes, test quizzes, excerpts from a textbook that none of us had. It was a complete disgrace. But the worst part was, that we weren’t the only school to find ourselves in this position. There were a number of schools who were up the creek without a paddle, and the real kicker was that the Department of Education refused to give any students ‘special consideration’ when it came to exam time. ‘Special consideration’ was something a student would have to apply for – if they were unable to complete their exam for a significant reason – being overseas, hospitalisation, family / medical emergency etc, then they would take into account all the previous marks / scores from in-class tests, homework assignments etc and develop and averaged score which would be applied as your HSC mark – which also carried the risk of being significantly lower than what you might have achieved on the exam, had you actually sat the exam. For some, it really wasn’t fair at all, but those were the rules.

I ended up feeling disappointed, but not entirely surprised with my UAI (University Admissions Index). Taking into account my disadvantage with Business Studies, my poor in-class results, not to mention my hysterical breakdown during two of my back-to-back three-hour exams for Business Studies and Computer Studies… like I said, it was disappointing, but not entirely unexpected.


Daily Prompt: It’s Friday, I’m in Love

Remember your first crush? Think about that very first object of your affection. Oh, the sweaty palms. The swoony feeling in your stomach. Tell us the story of your first crush. What was it about this person that made your heart pound? Was the love requited? Change the names to protect the guilty or innocent if you must! No judgement here. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Oh, god which one do I write about? First girl crush, or first boy crush??

Continue reading

open letter 8 Jan 2014

So, the following is an email that I wrote to a friend of mine who was in tears yesterday over some issues going on within their family. Although they aren’t being identified, they encouraged me to post it on my blog.



So I firstly wanted to apologise in case I seemed somewhat uninterested or dismissive of your emotional state before class tonight (well, last night) – that wasn’t the case at all.

Secondly, I wanted to check in and see if you’re okay?

I know how hard it is to be in a situation like yours. I know how hard it is to see one person you love be so cold and hateful towards somebody else that you love.

I can empathise with your situation, and all I can say is that one day, it will get better. It always does. It might not happen tomorrow, as much as you might want it to; it might not even happen next week, or even this year… but at some point it will.

Being somebody who doesn’t believe in religion, I’m not in a position to understand what the views of homosexuality are in your faith, nor do I claim to understand said views. Regardless of whatever religion, I always find it incredibly hard to understand anybody who has an issue with homosexuality.

I think that it would be incredibly hard for you to be in the position you’re in, because yes, you love your brother and yes, you also love your father, but he doesn’t love his own son.

I’m not even sure if that’s the right term. Love. He might ‘accept’ your brother and his ‘lifestyle’ for whatever reasons, but does that mean to say that he doesn’t love him. He is his own flesh and blood. Is he really that against it, that he would go as far as to say that he doesn’t love his own child?

If that’s the case, that’s just simply cold and arrogant. And something I find hard to believe.

I’ll let you in on something that I don’t discuss – I’m not even sure I’ve discussed it with Hulk, so it’s not something for you to repeat to others…

I don’t have a relationship with my father. Ever since I was a kid, we always clashed. ALWAYS. I never really knew or understood what it was, but we generally left each other alone – he did his thing, and I did mine (usually with mum).

Now, mum and I have spent countless hours rehashing out all my unresolved ‘daddy issues’, and one of the things we concluded was that he was simply scared of me. He was scared of me because I was completely different to all the other boys my age. I didn’t want to play with trucks, or go to the football, or go fishing with him. Instead I wanted to go to dance classes, and play with cabbage patch kids and barbies and twirl around the house in mum’s netball skirt.

even back then when I was 5 I was fucking ‘gone with the wind fabulous’ (and if you don’t understand that reference, jump on youtube and search Kenya Moore Gone With The Wind Fabulous… she’s from Real Housewives of Atlanta… it’ll make more sense then!)

So, where was I… right… so because dad was such a man’s-man, he expected me to be his little mini me… just the way he was with his father, and so was his brother, and so was every other male he grew up with. And so was every other father-and-son he met over the years. That’s what he was expecting. That’s what was ‘supposed’ to happen.

And I broke the mould.

And because I was so the complete polar-opposite of what he was expecting, he literally flipped out and didn’t know what to do. Nothing had prepared him for that realisation. He didn’t know how to behave around me, or talk to me. He thought it was just a phase… and when he realised it wasn’t, he started to get desperate.

He would force me to play with my brother who was obsessed with trucks and cars (daddy’s little mini me!!); he would force me to watch football games on tv; he would force me to hang out with him up in the shed; he would drag me, literally, kicking and screaming with him when he went fishing… all in some kind of desperate attempt to ‘fix’ me, and knock some sense into me.

Boys didn’t behave the way I did. Boys didn’t like the things that I liked. I was different. I wasn’t like any of the other boys. He couldn’t handle that.

The other aspect of that was that because I was so different, most of my time (and support and encouragement) came from mum. Therefore we would spend significantly more time with each other, and he got incredibly jealous of that and it drove him crazy.

Mum was a lot more understanding and accepting of me being so different as a child. Rather than almost have a heart attack and fly into a rage when she saw me jumping on the bed in my cousin’s fairy princess dress, she simply told me to stop jumping on the bed and twirl around on the floor instead. Then she made me a crown out of tinfoil to really complete the outfit.

When I wanted to get a Strawberry Shortcake doll, she didn’t fly off the handle and scream at me telling me there was something wrong and that I would be getting a Tonka Truck; not at all, she asked me which Strawberry Shortcake doll I would prefer.

When I was obsessed with Barbie and the Rockers, she would make sure that the babysitter brought them over with her so we could play with them until it was time for me to go to bed.

That’s what I know, and because of that, it’s shaped who I am, and the outlook and attitude I have on life, and parenting and acceptance.

When I was 20, my father and I had a massive falling out. A fight so massive, it happened over the phone and went for hours and hours and hours one night, until I cried myself to sleep and didn’t wake up for 2 days. That was the last time I spoke to him.

That was 10 years ago.

He knows he broke my heart. He knows I want nothing to do with him ever again – I even renounced his surname (and his family in the process) as a result of our blowup. For a couple of years afterwards, he would send cards / letters to mum’s house, and she’d forward them to me (because he didn’t know my address in Melbourne) and they were always full of some bullshit about how sorry he is for hurting me, and how much he loves me and wishes that one day I would be able to get past this, and we could at least start talking to each other again… and just that would make him happy beyond belief. As much as I despise him and will never forgive him, I know that he still loves me. He always will, I’m his child – his first born – which is always so strong and significant.

Now, he knows that I’m a scorpio, but I don’t think he ever understood or bought into the traits of any of the star signs… one of them being that as a scorpio, I can hold a grudge… and here we are 10 years later, and I’ve not forgiven him. I never will. I don’t think any child could forgive a parent for what he said to me.

How does any of this relate to your situation?

Well just like my father, your father seems to have some very rock-solid views from the 50’s. THat’s what he was taught. That’s no doubt what his parents views were, and it’s also the views of his religion. And who is he to question his religion??

But this isn’t about faith, as much as it is about his own son. His flesh and blood. There’s something quite telling about a man who can’t even love their child, regardless of any other circumstances.

I think it’s very typical for parents to be very unaccepting of their child’s lifestyle if it’s anything other than the norm – but regardless of all of that, they still love, and always will love their child.

In terms of the dramas between your brother and your father, it’s not going to be easy. Your father is a man, and men are stubborn and they don’t like to talk about or even acknowledge their emotions. Perhaps that’s something that needs to change. You mentioned that your mother knows… maybe that’s something that she needs to discuss with him one-on-one. She might be able to talk some sense into him.

It makes it harder knowing that your brother has a disability, and I can see how that could be used as the excuse to explain your brothers lifestyle, but at the end of the day, they both need to realise that it’s not a choice; it’s not something that be prayed away; it’s not something that can be ‘fixed’. Your brother isn’t broken, he just likes guys. He doesn’t need fixing, he needs understanding. He’s already got it hard enough having a disability… adding the dramas of being gay on top of that.. lordy, I’m feeling sorry for him!

Your dad needs educating. He needs to hear a voice of reason. He needs to know that it’s not a disease – your brother was simply born this way. It wasn’t a choice. It’s genetically predetermined when he was a foetus.

It sucks that you’re caught in the middle of it all, and it’s not going to be easy for anybody involved in a situation like this, moreso if it starts to become volatile at all, but all you and your family need to know is that there is help available out there – you just need to be willing to ask for it.

He also needs to understand that his views are dated, and that whether he likes us or not, we’re here to stay. We’re not going anywhere. Ever.

And of course, if worse comes to worse, you can always talk to me about it.

Meanwhile, I think I’ve rambled on for long enough… it’s getting closer and closer to 2am and my eyelids are getting incredibly heavy, so I think it’s time for this little black duck to get some shut-eye.

So remember, I’m here if you need. Otherwise, I’ll see you in class.


Daily Prompt: Land of Confusion

Tell us about a time when you felt out of place.

I generally feel out of place in most social settings. 

I guess I’ve become quite introverted in a social setting, and yet, am usually somewhat extroverted around those who make me feel comfortable. As a result I feel as though I have lost the art of conversation.


Yup, that’s pretty much me – socially retarded and weird.

Most social settings make me feel awkward and uncomfortable – like going to a party where there’s going to be a lot of people that I don’t know. I, generally, would prefer to just not go simply because I know that I struggle to talk to other people about, well, anything. If I can’t find something in common with them, then I just want to flee and get out of their field of vision. 

You know when you go to a party and there’s that one person sitting in the corner by themselves, or the one who’s off talking to the animals? That’s me. I’m the one who stands out. The one who you can tell just doesn’t belong. I would be the one turning up to some event and being asked if I’m lost.

A classic example of this would be the night my housemates decided we were all going to a strip joint Gentlemen’s Club. 

One of my female housemates (at the time) used to work for a company that owned a handful of different clubs in the city, a couple of nightclubs, a couple of bars, and a couple of strip joints (and I think they even owned a brothel…!?) Anyway, she used to do marketing for two of the nighclubs this company owned, and so we were always getting free passes and drink cards just on the off-chance we might actually want to go to one of them. 

For the record, neither of them interested me in the slightest. They were both straight clubs, and one of those was a rave club. And I’m talking R-A-V-E-!-!-! As in, neon plastic spikes, furry leg warmer things, reflective strips of material sewn on to jeans with super wide legs, platforms, piercings etc etc. It played nothing but trance musicIt was also full of people completely off their chops on a concoction of god-only-knows-what with pupils the size of dinner plates:

There had also been a string of incidents where people would get bashed, stabbed etc. I think there was even somebody who was murdered. Just reminds me of the Salt Nightclub Murders

Anyways, I’m getting rather sidetracked here… where was I…?? oh yes…

So, this one night, we get all dressed up to go to this Gentlemen’s Club, and we go in and have a fancy private booth near the stage, and of course there are strippers dancers everywhere, and of course they’re names are like Khrystal, Delicious, Ginger, Raven, etc etc and my housemate knew a number of them – when they weren’t stripping they were also working as podium dancers at the other clubs. 

So there was this place full of perhaps the grossest-of-the-gross straight guys, and we’re talking disgusting, sleazy alpha-males who all think they are king-shit, and everybody wants them…

Excuse me whilst I go throw up a little bit. Ugh. I can’t stand those types of guys. They’re so revolting. And repulsive. But what makes it worse is that they’re throwing money at these ladies, to treat them like kings and basically do whatever they want, so their ego just spirals out of control. Oh god straight men are disgusting, sometimes.

So there was them… all 150+ of them. Then there was the handful of women who were there (the bogan ladies with the bogan men), my female housemates, and I. 

I think the highlights of that night were having three of the girls in our booth dancing up a storm with the three of us at once and being the envy of every guy there… and then having them all give me a lap dance. Unfortunately, (and as embarrassed as I am to admit this) this was the first time I’d ever seen a pikachu up close. Being freshly waxed and smooth as a babies bum, whilst being covered / surrounded with glitter and diamonte’s, was rather fascinating. I remember at one point, one of the girls was sitting right in front of me with her legs spread, writhing around on the stage on her back, and I was fixated at this ‘thing’ that was just staring back at me. 

I would compare it to a car accident… you know you shouldn’t be staring at it, but you can’t avoid it. Like it’s staring at you instead. You’re trying to look elsewhere to avoid it,

oh gee, she’s got some fancy nipple tassels on…

la-di-dah-di-dah, um, oh god, stop looking at me.

Hey, I like this song.

Oh wow, I didn’t even know the body could *do* that!!


ummm, what is she doing now?

No, bitch, don’t touch me there!!

Do I look like I wanna be touched there? Keep your damn hands to yourse….


After all that, I actually didn’t mind it too much. It stopped bothering me. Well… enough to only be slightly scared of it, rather than feeling utterly terrified. After they’d stop ‘dancing’, and pick up all the money off the stage, I’d ask them important questions like, where they got their shoes from? Do they ever get concerned about having a wardrobe malfunction… y’know, too early into their ‘performance’?

Needless to say, I’ve never set foot back into an establishment like that again. Nor do I ever plan to… well, unless I’m gonna get up there are show those bitches a thing or two… but then that wouldn’t necessarily make me feel out of place, would it.

Hmmm, I think that’s something that requires further discussion.