Saturday, December 29, 2007

The CD Boy Saga, as prompted by Donnie Darko

I have loved only once, but OH! how I have crushed...

There have been some real corkers too... of course I can't and won't post about all of them - then I would have no secrets - but one of them came to mind this evening, while I was watching Donnie Darko on SBS.

I've had two crushes who've named Donnie Darko as their favourite film. The first, was and still is, posthumously (no he's not dead, but to me yes) referred to as "CD BOY". But the thing about Cd boy was, not only did he enjoy Donnie Darko the film, but he was very much like Donnie Darko, the protagonist; slightly murky, coy but also cheeky and a touch melancholy.

You may well ask why he was called CD boy.

When I was a teenager, I caught the northshore line from Gordon to North Sydney daily to get to school. As I caught the same time train everyday, there were regular customers who also alighted at my stop. One of them was CD boy. I don't think I paid much attention to him, until one day I noticed him limping up the stairs. Who is the boy with the limp? As I walked [not stalked!.. ahem] behind him through the shopping centre which leads to the mainstreet of North Sydney, I discovered he worked at the cd shop in the middle of the centre.

The cd shop was not so much of a shop, as a market stall. It was really just a bunch of cd stands in the centre of the tunnel with a cashier desk. And to get to school, I had to walk past, if not through the shop everyday.

I guess I 'watched' him for a while, but then one day I actually wanted to buy a cd [the givegoods, for those who care] and couldn't find it in the shop, so I went to the counter and asked if they would get it in for me. CD boy, hero of the day/year said "I have a friend who works for [insert important record company], and they've given me a free copy - do you want it?". I took up the offer, and he said he would have it the next day. And he did.

Yes, this boy had me smitten. Not only did he work in a cd shop [somewhat of a dream for every music-obsessed teenager] but he had a similar taste in music, was generous and had powerful friends!

I had to thank him.

So, I think I gave him a chuppa chup [no not sure why, on reflection]. But after this point, if I was walking through the shopping centre and saw him, we'd have a chat. He used to recommend cds to me, and give me others free. One was Youth and Young Manhood by the Kings of Leon - still one of my favourite albums. To thank him for that I made him a mix tape, with Joy Division and Syd Barrett on it - risky, but impressive. I was so nervous. I remember the utter thrill when he said he'd been getting back into early Pink Floyd, and loved Syd Barrett... haha I was a goner.

But it wasn't as if I walked to and from school, alone. No, i had train buddies. The afternoon walk became a game of tactics and strategy and school notes were pervaded with stick figure cartoons depicting unrealistic unions. Everyone know about CD boy. There were even suggestions I should ask him to my formal. and can i just say >THANK GOODNESS THAT NEVER HAPPENED>

So all this was going on over quite a few months, and I was in year 12, about to sit my final exams and thinking how I would never see him again. On one of my last walks through the plaza before my HSC he noted how I would soon be leaving school and said we should stay in touch. He wrote his phone number on the back of a receipt and gave it to me. This was the worst thing ever. I had to do the calling, ME - do the calling. What a shirker! For any boys reading this, do NOT give your number to a girl... take a girl's number.

I don't really remember the order of events, but I do remember 2AM before my first HSC exam receiving a good luck message from him on my phone. I don't remember how he had my number... but a few weeks later, after my exams, I plucked up the courage to ring his landline. MISTAKE. His dad answered! I had to say who was calling and for whom... apparently CD boy was interstate... so, I left it, mortified I had spoken to his parents!

I called again about a month later, and actually got onto him. But you know the sad twist of fate was, I had started dating someone else since leaving school.. so I had this plan to casually drop in a reference to my boyfriend, and keep it at friend-level with CD boy, even though I secretly still pined after him. My brilliant plan went as such:

S: "So are you going to see Radiohead in April?"

CD boy: "I'm not sure yet."

S: "I'm definitely going, hoping to drag my boyfriend along."

The whole tone of the conversation changed. It was horrible! I am horrible! HOWEVER he gave me his number, so it was all his fault ;)

The conversation pretty much waned from then on, and we hung up, and I felt awfully unresolved about the whole matter.

A few weeks later, I saw Kings of Leon were playing with The Strokes, and I messaged him and told him I was going, and if he were too we could meet up. He said that would be excellent. I never heard from him again. And nor did I contact him again! But... I have seen him since... at numerous music festivals [Newtown festival and Cockatoo Island, to be specific], wandering around in aviator sunnies, like a Tim Rogers-esque ghost from the past.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

I don't mean to sound ungrateful, but being back home with Mum and Dad is both a trial and a treasure. I still struggle with the same things I struggled with when I lived with them during school and the first half of uni.

They care so much they want to know about and help with everything. There is not too much room for independence. However, they are so keen to chip in with expenses and advice, how can you refuse?

I witness their relational difficulties, and grieve, while we have our own barneys at times. I think watching your parents fight has got to be up there in my top five most hated things. Having said that, my parents haven't fought since I arrived on Monday, they've just had tiffs, disagreements, miscommunications and frustrations. But even so, it's hard not to feel like the third wheel at times.

I will be living here for the whole of January, before I move out with Jo. I think it will really test my patience, but be a blessing in disguise. I need to be challenged to be more thoughtful and selfless, and being around family is great practise!

It is a bit unfair though, to list these chagrins without acknowledging things like the fact they will be providing nearly all my meals, a bed, pay tv (I'm somehow freakishly addicted to the Lifestyle channel and watching Nigella Lawson and Grand Designs on repeat). These things are wonderful, not to mention the good times and hanging out with our dogs.

Here's to an educational January!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

My brother or I need to procreate... it's getting boring! By which I mean, Christmas lunch, is getting boring.

I'm the youngest cousin on my dad's side, and the second oldest on my mum's. We're sort of in between, so we usually have Christmas lunch with just my brother, mum and dad. In the afternoon, we go to Bilgola beach, where my uncle's beach house is. He's a grandfather 11 times... in other words, all my cousin's on dad's side bar one are over 35 with kids. Because of this i've never been able to get too close to my cousins, as the youngest is still 17 years older than me and lives in Cooma, the others live in Caberra, and Sydney.

We're at that "in between" stage, where my parents are old enough to be grandparents, but Andrew and I are too young to get married and have kids. So I think we're all looking forward to the next generation to make Christmas more exciting. It's weird having only your parents and brother to pull a cracker with at the dinner table! no kids!

Having said that, it was fun seeing the extended family yesterday afternoon at the beach house, despite the weird feeling of being only vaguely related to the people there. But it is soooo weird when you realise you used to be the kids running off to swim and lining up for grown-up food and watching a movie and playing games, and now you're the ones looking at the kids and thinking "my how they've grown"! How sad, and i'm only 21! HELP!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

I described the view of the mountains from my house in Orange in my last post. Well here is a photo taken just moments ago from my front door, looking south-west.

Incredibly violent storms ripped through our part of the country today, with falls of around 100 mils in 24 hours, which is incredible. Places like Gulargambone which haven't seen rain in months, were drenched, if not flooded. Anyway, this afternoon, the sky cleared up. It is freezing outside, probably around 12 degrees, with the windchill factor, but there is a beautiful sunset.

In this photo, you can see a flock of birds flying across the horizon. You can also just see the steeple of the church in the centre of town, next to the tree on the left. I will miss how picturesque the country is. Orange is particularly lovely, and is at an altitude where you really notice the weather.

A new year, a new blog

It's a new year, and I'm aware there are people who can read my old blog who I probably don't want to read my blog. So i've decided to start afresh with blogger, and a new layout.

Also, most of the blogs I read are hosted by blogger, so I can now post comments on those with a profile.

I like how you can choose a photo for your banner. Mine is the view from the seventh floor of an apartment block where I lived with my brother for the first half of 2007. It was a pretty cool view seven stories up, except mostly what you could see was other units and the Westfield down the road.

I miss the height, the evening breeze, feeling like you're on top of the world.

It's funny, I've lived in three different places in the last two years, and i've grown attached to each of them in their own way. The first was Roseby Street Leichhardt, my first flatting experience. It was a bold move, going in knowing only one other person in the house. But I ended up becoming close friends with all four of my housemates. Some of my loveliest memories rest in that house. Memories like singing EMU songs at the top of our voices on Good Friday morning when the neighbours were probably asleep, holding spontaneous dance-offs in the hallway, going shopping every Sunday as a group, baking, baking and more baking, holding house parties, accumulating free furniture from the streets of Leichhardt, buying fish as pets and them successively dying, letting the grass grow to a stupid height and changing the lightbulbs in our eleven chandeliers. good times.

Then it was in with my brother while I waited to see where the ABC would send me. I slept on a mattress on the floor of his study. One wall was a glass sliding door, which let the morning sun in. It was lovely, except on super hot days. Living with Andrew was an experience. He's a generally easy going person, so we didn't have any conflict, but i have to say it was a bit strange at times. Particularly when either of us had friends over, or when he walked around in his boxers, sans shirt. But we're related, so it's okay.

And now, in Orange. I live in a double brick, 1930s home with a view of the mountain ranges, including Mount Canobolas. It faces south, so you can watch the weather roll in. One thing I don't like about the house is it has mottled glass windows, which you can't see through. I love watching the sky, and I can't do that from inside my house.

I spent today packing up my things in Orange, because I'm coming home in two weeks to start work with Christians in the Media. It's been a sad week, saying goodbye to all the lovely people I've become friends with, and saying goodbye to this house with its picture rails and stained glass. Not to mention extremely cheap rent.

Where to next? Well, i'm moving in with Jo, my best friend. Hopefully somewhere innerwest, like Ashfield, Summer Hill, Marrickville, Petersham, Dulwich Hill. It will be a 2 bedroom apartment, different again. I can't wait to see where we end up.