Thursday, 31 October 2013

Final copy of creative writing. And yes. It has a title. Warning, 2879 words.

Yellow, less travelled roads
By Courtney Fong

I always wondered what they were all thinking. We were all in the same place, wanting the same thing but our reasons were different. I wondered what those reasons were and tried to deduce my way through my boredom. There was the black pencil skirt, a matching blazer and misplaced runners. I figured she was an office woman who worked in the city and had a long way to walk before she could change into the more professional heels probably hidden in her deceivingly small bag. The un-tucked blue button up over navy slacks and an expression that looked as if the graffitied backpack was dragging him down to the worst parts of hell. High school senior. Looked about ready to hang himself by his crooked tie. And then there was a black mini skirt paired with intentional bed-head who made me squirm self-consciously in my 6-year old jeans and hand-me-down t-shirt. I shook my head before I could hear a voice scold me about presenting myself like a lady. Again.

My eyes stopped roaming what, in most cases, could hardly be called a crowd as the game lost its already bland flavour. I pretended to fiddle with my phone so that I wouldn’t look like a deranged stranger who stared intently at random people. Every day I do this – text gibberish to no one while changing the song before it had a chance to even whisper a lyric.

How is it that everyone else looked like they knew what they were doing? They all knew how to move, how to stand, how to wait. And here I was, awkwardly trying to fit in with a group of strangers I may never see again beyond the next few, long minutes. Nobody else had this much internal struggle over waiting at a bus stop.

I stared at another bus drive by. The driver didn’t even glance in our direction - not that I blamed him. There were only two buses that went through this town. The people around here mostly just caught the one that we were anticipating, not the hulking empty box that just turned an odd corner and went down a mysterious route away from the city. It seemed that not many people take the road less travelled. Sorry, Mr. Frost. 
And then something shifted as the high schooler started rifling through his pockets and pushed off the wall. Squinting into the distance I spotted scrolling words and the three glowing numbers. Relief came over the crowd and a movement began. People seemed to creak and moan as they moved from their stationary positions like statues that were given life and were moving for the first time. I eagerly joined the jumbled line and fiddled with the rigidness of my bus pass.

The bus lumbered and sank in front of us, like an exhausted toxic beast letting out a weary sigh from its exhaust pipe. The doors abruptly opened and in a somewhat orderly fashion, we started to file in. The automatic and mindless motion was akin to the one of cows entering the slaughtering house. It was an odd and surprisingly morbid thought that passed through my mind. Was I becoming bitter at the age of 22 already? No. In this day and age, you can never be too young to be bitter. Was that a reference to the Seinfeld rerun I watched last night? Before I fell asleep in front of the computer again? The questions were dismissed as I began to step onto the bus and-

“No more room on the bus. You’re going to have to wait for the next one”

The cruel rasp made my heart feel like it was being sandpapered, more because of the content of the sentence rather than the grainy texture of the voice that declared it. A voice that seemed to be anointed to all bus drivers once they graduated from bus driver school. It, of course, came along with a deep cut scowl, intolerance for youths and the need to arrive too early or too late to all bus stops.

Flushed with frustration, irrational anger and embarrassment, I walked off the bus and tried to unimagine the mocking stares of the commuters going on their merry little way to where ever the hell they needed to go.

The next bus didn’t come for another 45 minutes. Shit. Shit, shit, shit. I really couldn’t be late to this stupid business tutorial – the class where I mastered sleeping with my eyes open and had created a doodle masterpiece at the back of my notebook. I checked my phone even though I knew that there was no chance I would be able to make the class on time unless I could grab a ride off someone. For a split second I considered calling home and asking dad but quickly shook it off. I was not in the mood for another lecture on responsibilities and what I was doing with my life or how glorious my brother’s successful career was compared to mine.

I was about to sink to the floor in defeated frustration and begin smacking my head against the pavement. Hurried footfalls and loud panting stopped me as they came closer. I looked behind me to see him frantically waving his left arm out like a mad man. Confused and not really thinking rationally from the shock of not being able to function properly in society, I began raising my arm to wave back. It froze in mid air as the sound of another bus stopped in front of me. Well that would have been mortifying.

A blur of disheveled black hair skidded to a halt in front of me. When the doors opened, his brown eyes nearly rolled to the back of his head as he sighed with relief. He was boarding the bus that no one took. Well, at least, he was trying to. He desperately rummaged through his sticker-riddled bookbag while trying to apologise to the bus driver for probably leaving his ticket at home. Unimpressed and unsympathetic, the bus driver’s stubbly scowl and deadpan eyes all pretty much told me he was about to kick the guy off like the other driver did to me.

Irresponsible. That’s what dad would have labeled him - an irresponsible slacker. My mother would have judged the boy’s odd choice of knee-ripped, olive jeans and his brandless backwards cap.  She’d probably dismiss him as a delinquent who contributed nothing to society and wasted his time chasing an unreachable dream.

And then something in me just threw up its hands and said, “Not today. Not again.” I quickly walk behind Mr. Messy Hair and slipped my bus pass in his hand. Feeling the weird disturbance in his quest to stay on the bus, he looked down at the ticket, shot up his eyebrows and turned and smiled at me. Mr. Messy Hair had faint freckles dashed across the bridge of his really, really straight nose. A nose that sat between two ordinary brown eyes made extraordinary with the twinkle of relief and gratitude.

He swiftly dipped the ticket into the machine and took it out, flashing a smug, cheeky grin at the bus driver. He handed it back to me with a simple thank you, the smugness no longer on his lips but rather genuine happiness. The cheekiness was still there though.

I looked on with the bus pass still in hand as he walked straight to the back of the bus and plopped down like one would if they just got home and dumped themselves on the couch after a long hard day.

I didn’t realize I was staring like an idiot before a voice almost identical to the first coughed out, “So are you just going to stand there or are you going to get on the bus?”

I was about to apologize and get off before I looked at my bus pass. It was the ticket that allowed three sections instead of my usual two. Odd. Suddenly, shrill alarm bells in the form of my parent’s voices rang through my mind over and over again. And then they stopped with an impulse that I never thought I would ever feel.  I quickly dipped the ticket in the machine, took it out and immediately walked over to the middle of the bus and sat on the left.

This was exhilarating. The unexpected courage and giving in to a weird impulse left me with an adrenaline rush. It was if I just woke up really rejuvenated and was ready to take on everything.

But then the bus started turning that odd corner that would then go on a mysterious route away from the city. Suddenly the courage fizzled out of me and the adrenaline became much more like the unpleasant anticipation one faced when they realized that they were an idiot for ever agreeing to enter the school talent quest because of the peer pressure from her friends just before I went on stage. What the hell was I doing?

I looked out the window and saw that during my internal crisis the bus took more twists and turns and I had already missed at least two stops. When the hell did that happen? The panic began to rise along with my hand to press the stop button.

“You know, I didn’t peg you for the hobo park kind of person.” I tried to register what he just said and figure out how he managed to move to the seat opposite mine without any noise. My mum’s voice screamed ‘SERIAL KILLER’ which was more annoying than frightening. Although that frightened part of my brain was still significant.

Ignoring my silence, he continued. “The next stop is at Hobo Park. You know, the one that is full of bridges where the hobo’s live under like weird trolls?” My forgotten hand immediately fell to my side.

He continued with a swift breath as if he was catching up with an old friend. “It’s not all that bad though. There are some amazing graffiti spots there. I’ve even got a few of my babies on some of the smaller spaces. The cops are usually too busy keeping the ‘residents’ from creating too much disturbance and so me and my mates go there from time to time to skate and spray a bit.” Was he talking to me out of what he felt was obligation because I gave him a free ride? Or was my mum right and he really was a serial killer?

He began to ramble on and my confusion over why he started talking to me began to shift. I became mesmerized by how freely he expressed himself with his hands, his eyes and words as he described the time his best friend twisted her ankle as they tried to break into his own house. I was bewildered by how he seamlessly shifted from one subject to the next. Like when he told me his art took inspiration from the Egyptian culture he saw while backpacking through Africa and Europe in his gap year. That was also the year he learned that he was allergic to eggplants after a food poisoning episode in Scotland. He was unwittingly revealing his life story, a story that seemed so technicolour to my monochrome. I was the dreary Kansas to his spectacular Oz.

If it were anyone else, I would probably be scared shitless about a complete stranger talking to me on an empty bus that was heading in an unknown direction. But he was so at ease with himself to the point where I realized I was no longer scared and I was just…awestruck and calm and incredibly jealous. Because the more I listened and the more I watched him, the more I realized that while there was a mile of difference between us, there were similarities. It was those similarities that got me. Both our Converse shoes were worn and grimy but mine were due to age and routine whereas his were stained with the dust of foreign soil, adventure and independence. Our eyes were near the same shade of umber but I doubted mine would ever witness the beautiful, the ugly, the strange and the unique things that he has. He has been alive for the same amount of years I have but somehow I felt like an infant when I compared how much we have both really lived. I started wishing for a tornado to come sweep this bus away with me in it where it would land and crush my old self so that I could emerge as someone different.

He started asking me questions and I started answering. I started out tell the truth, I really did. I mentioned that I was studying business and commerce at uni.  I had been to San Francisco once to visit American relatives. But then I started saying other things. I said that I went on exchange in Paris during high school for 6 months and got lost on the Metro. I told him I started doing amateur night art classes recently and was thinking about getting serious about it. These were things that I have never done or said. Why did I lie? Was it so that he wouldn’t be able to identify me in case he really was a serial killer? Was my life so boring that I had to invent a complete stranger? Or was it because these weren’t real lies?

He started talking about the new apartment that he shared with three other friends as I continued to question my life, my past, my present, my future, my family, my home. Home. Shit. I was supposed to be getting off this bus and trying to find a way back, not make friends with a potential psychopath. Too bad I couldn’t just click my sneakers and chant, “There’s no place like home.” I was pretty sure Dorothy would not have been able to use a spell if she didn’t believe in it.

I had to cut him off as he tried to imitate the noise their broken smoke alarm made. I apologized and told him that I had to get off and go back for something I left at home.
If possible, his smile got even brighter as told me that he was getting off at the next stop anyways. I was unsure whether I felt like it was a cool coincidence or plain creepy. But there was definite relief in there, somewhere.

I decided that a serial killer couldn’t possibly be psychotic enough to create a fake persona and life with such specific detail as his. With that, I took what was still a massive leap of faith in my case, and confessed that I wasn’t use to this area or the buses. I was essentially placing my faith in humanity in his hands and prayed that he would not abuse this information.

He stood after the bus came to a momentary halt and told me to trust him as he walked off the bus. There was little hesitation before I followed his footsteps. I stood next to him and noted that the streets around me were not dirty, sketchy or dark as I imagined they would be. Trendy little boutiques sat next to cozy cafes and other local businesses. It was also broad daylight with a reasonable amount of people trudging around. The relief that came from having someone to trust and to guide me became the feeling of safety and reassurance.  

He gently nudged my shoulder with his elbow and took me across the street. He explained that I could take the same number bus home and there was also a bus that could take me straight to uni. He checked his watch and told me that he had to go back to the other side of the road in order to catch a different bus. Disappointment, sadness and fear coated my heart as he thanked me for the last time and crossed the road without looking back. In the short time I was in his company he had become a safety blanket for me. He was a safety blanket that doubled as a magic carpet that opened my eyes and took me to the pyramids and the Stonehenge.

I considered my options. I could take a bus home where I would have to explain all of this to my parents. Or I could take a bus to uni where I probably missed half the lecture but would be able to get home on time so my parents won’t be suspicious of where I’ve been. Or there was option number three. Cross the road and keep going. I shook my head and checked the timetable for the next bus that would take me to uni.

It wasn’t until after the lecture finished and after I signed up for amateur night art classes that I realized that I never got his number or his name. I knew all his favourite languages, his favourite band and his best friend’s dogs name but couldn’t put a name to the face or Facebook. I decided it didn’t matter and that he wasn’t really my magic carpet. He was my Tornado.

BNV 2013 Finals Round #2 - New York City

No words. Actually one of my favourite.

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

BNV 2013 Finals Round #4 - Washington D C

The fucking sass and inspiration and wit and amazingness is breathtaking

Monday, 28 October 2013

I seek his phantom warmth that seems to burn me in my dreams. I wake up to reach over to him, to feel him, to know him. Ironically it is my consciousness that drives him away. His weight is gone. His roughness is gone. His gentleness is gone. All that is left is what was always there. Me. Because he was never there. And I may not ever find him there. Even if he was there. Because I don't know him. I know his touch. I know his eyes. I know his lips. I know him. But not him. I would not recognise the colour of his eyes unless maybe if I saw the shape of them when he really saw me. I would not recognise his voice but only the oxymoron of my rough gentle lips against the back of my hand and shoulder. I yearn for the day that I will. Until then, I shall live with these phantom scars that he has already inflicted on me.

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Good news. I might be psychic. I might have figured it out. What it was.
Bad news. I might be psychic. That I might be right. This is what it is.

I have no one to tell

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Joshua Michael Robinson - Whiskey Days LIVE @ The Vanguard Room

I feel like something inside of me is dying.
I'm stuck in this shit state lately. It's that pit in my stomach that is full of unwarranted stress, anxiety and uncertainty. Something big or significant is going to happen soon. It's that kind of feeling. And it's affecting me, physically. My hands are shaking, my heart is aching, my head is swimming and my body is just so exhausted with it all. It's like sometimes I can't breathe. Something is choking me, suffocating me. And I don't know what it is. I just want it to go away. I want to be able to breathe and not seem fucking melodramatic and selfish when hanging out with my friends.

Friday, 25 October 2013

Platina Jazz presents Sailor Moon - A Moonlight Serenade

It’s in my dreams I find the right moment
It is the night that brings me the moonlight
And though I know it’s too late to call you
Your shadow’s always right by my side

Not all the tears I cry are made of sorrow
Reflected pools that will never dry
My eyes will show the dawn of tomorrow
The truth will speak in the ray of light

Romance in miracles so hard to defy
Invited by the moon in your eyes

I can see you there in every moment
As the day, it’s so bright and clear
Kaleidoscopic turns, in my heart that burns
Will show the way through the darkest night

The past remains present in the future
Time seems endless when you are near
Like a ticking clock, the twinkle of the stars
So hard to tell what is now and here?

Romance in miracles so hard to defy
Invited by the moon in your eyes

Like the sky begins on the horizon
The vision’s clear but so far away
Right where our story’s told, never to be old
Out of touch but it’s always there

Romance in miracles so hard to defy
Invited by the moon in your eyes

It’s in my dreams I find the right moment
Time seems endless when you are near
Right where our story’s told, never to be old
Out of touch but it’s allways there
The vision’s far but it’s always clear
It is the miracle that we share

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Florence and the Machine - Take Care (Radio 1 Live Lounge Special)

Florence Welch is fucking flawless and no one can tell me otherwise.

Monday, 14 October 2013

Bastille cover Miley Cyrus' We Can't Stop in the Live Lounge

Seriously though, Bastille is my idol. Brilliant arrangement.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

" Not all toxic people are cruel and uncaring. Some of them love us dearly. Many of them have good intentions. Most are toxic to our being simply because their needs and way of existing in the world force us to compromise ourselves and our happiness. They aren’t inherently bad people, but they aren’t the right people for us. And as hard as it is, we have to let them go. Life is hard enough without being around people who bring you down, and as much as you care, you can’t destroy yourself for the sake of someone else. You have to make your wellbeing a priority. Whether that means breaking up with someone you care about, loving a family member from a distance, letting go of a friend, or removing yourself from a situation that feels painful — you have every right to leave and create a safer space for yourself."
Daniell Koepke

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Well then:

So I wanted to get a haircut like this:
for a while now. But I found it a bit before the ball and since I didn't know how it would have turned out, I wanted to wait until after (OH, BSOC Ball photos after this!!)

So I went to Rapunzel's Room in Maroubra which is owned by a friend of my sister. They are so nice and friendly and funny. Anyways, here is a before and after shot:

It's a bit shorter than I wanted but I still really love it! She layered the bottom and cut the length perfectly. I'm going to go back for some balayage/ombre sometime next week :)

I have an urge to write. But I don't know what about. I already have writer's block for my creative writing. I guess I just need a good ramble about life:

  • 19 years old. Don't know what the hell I am doing
  • Things are going relatively well. 
  • After a break up of a 4 year relationship, you never know how much your life is going to change. I think we both handled it well, considering. The lead up was just so anti-climatic and sudden yet it was always there. Compared to the drama and emotions from the previous break ups, this one felt...different. I don't know in what way though. There was some drifting apart the months before in the way that felt like we were getting to busy to be together. We kept missing each other and when we did meet up, not much could be said. It was like, we unconsciously prepared ourselves for it. That being said, I still love him. In fact I really do miss him. And I know I was the one who made the choice to avoid contact after it all, and I don't regret that one bit, but we were just so constant in each other's life for so long. Talking every day, seeing each other every other day, having someone to be your partner or date to parties and events. Having so many moments, inside jokes, shared secrets, shared love. It just makes me sad that I just can't seem to find that same momentum or feeling with anyone else. For now. I miss his presence, his company, his safety. I miss him. But I'm happy for us as individuals. I'm grateful for how much we helped each other grow. I'm grateful that we were such a beautiful and great part of each others life. I'll treasure everything. 
  • Oh wow. Yeah, ok, I guess I needed that out of my system. It's been 10 months, after all. And I think that the fact that I can write this on the public blog means that I'm not afraid anymore. I'm no longer afraid of people knowing how I feel, where I stand or who will read it.
  •  Bsoc Ball was great. I'll post some pictures up in a separate post.
  • I'm getting a haircut later today and may even inquire about balayage/ombre. (though it costs quite a lot)
  • I want to make something. Something important. A costume? A film? A dish? An artwork? A song? A story? I don't know. I just want my creative juices to flow endlessly again. I'm feeling lazy and useless lately
  • On the bright side, everything is coming off hiatus and FUCK YEAH
  • Also watched a whole season of the anime Attack on Titan which is freaking interesting and intense
  • I am also addicted to online shopping. Stop me. Help me.
  • Also I want a boyfriend, in the sense I want someone to be comfortable with with additional cuddles and kisses. Just the concept and idea makes me want the warm and fuzziness of the security of someone else's arms who I can make cute and unlady-like jokes with or share our favourite pizza while watching each other's favourite shows and maybe even geek out about things. Or maybe he could be the total opposite of that. He'll be teaching me how to play his favourite sport, making fun of me because I've never skateboarded before. Just little cute details. Doesn't that sound nice and fun?
One day I hope to write like this. I hope to be able to capture the exact feeling with words, colours and images like she does. Because it must be so beautiful yet tragic the way she sees and feels the world to be able to write like this. To be able to feel and experience things that drive and push her to say these things. 

I’ve lost a lot of people over the years. Not in a silly break-up sense, but in a they’re gone from the face of the goddamn earth sense. This conversation took place a few years back during one of those dark times, and the boy with whom it took place probably saved my life a little bit if ya know what I mean. I think I’ve talked about him on here a few times or at least alluded to his existence — he was the boy who helped me understand that we’re all dying to live and living to die and it’s hard when our last chance to live is also our first. The boy whose voice rose like smoke and dripped like ink. The reason my favourite smells are cinnamon and turpentine. He could hear colours and see sounds and I used to think what a goddamn beautiful life he must lead. He told me my words sounded like wish white and sky blue, sometimes earl grey, and I always wondered whether he meant the tea or the shade or perhaps some half-hemmed amalgam in between. He was also the boy I dreamed about for nearly two years, and not in a lovesick puppydog kind of way. I like to think it was more of in a this is an important moment in your life Molly and you should remember it kind of way, but I don’t really know and it doesn’t really matter. The dream was always the same —

“I don’t get you at all.”
(My nose twitches.)
“Why not?”
“You’re just so much weirder than everyone else.”
“You’re really hard to be around.”
“Because I paint the same thing over and over?”
(He sighs, looking past me.)
“No…because you’re like…haunted. You are so haunted. And everyone feels it.”
I don’t know, sometimes I wonder where he is or what he’s doing, but people like him, people like that, they have this proclivity for finding their way back into our lives, so I don’t really concern myself with the details.