bliumchik: Dr. Horrible laughs evilly (mine is an evil laugh)
[personal profile] bliumchik
Hokay! So I am in the midst of another fortnight'o'doom but this time I am trying to keep up with the internet. Having got those mixes up my to-do list contains two gulf_aid promises and more stuff for uni. My more immediate to-do list consists of stuff to put in a perzine i shall hopefully print tomorrow evening have already printed by now because this entry is SO LONG OH GOD to take to This Is Not Art, where I shall spend the long weekend in a Newcastle hostel with some people from the Writers' Society, doing writery things.

What has my fortnight'o'doom so far consisted of? Well, on Monday1 I went to a short story reading in Newtown entitled Penguin Plays Rough. My boy Alexander, meanwhile, was also going to Newtown to see the Rumjacks with his cousin, so I showed up at his place and we all walked down there together. The Rumjacks are a local sort of celtic folk punk type of band, which means they are basically Al's power animal2. They were doing a free gig at the Townie, the performance space area of which has an approximately 60-40 pool table to regular table surface area ratio. Anyway, we got there before the first set, had some drinks and giggled a bit at the circle of little old ladies sitting on couches near the door. Little did we know, grannies were hardcore! When the band started they were totally into it, two of them even stuck their hands in the air and did those little palm rotor movements that old people do when they listen to music.

As soon as I finished my screwdriver I ventured forth to locate the location of Penguin Plays Rough, which heretofore I had only encountered in the form of WriteSoc newsletters. I had checked the internet before leaving home and, somewhat optimistically, decided to save paper by refraining from printing out the map in favour of simply writing on a used bus ticket the name of the street nearest where I had to turn off the main road. While this plan was, in fact, fairly effective, I failed to calculate the length of time I would have to spend walking down said main road, and thus became paranoid on multiple occasions that I had gone too far and somehow missed it3.

But no! I turned into exactly the right dark alley and arrived at exactly the right nondescript warehouse, distinguishable from those surrounding it by the sounds of boisterous youth coming from behind its garage door. Upon entering I found that none of the people from the Writers' Society had in fact shown up, but one dude from my Poetry Workshop class was there, which mitigated the awkwardness somewhat. The place was mostly warehouse, but homely touches had been added as follows: one (1) tiled black and white lino floor, straight out of a sixties diner or a bathroom from The Sims; one (1) red theatre curtain separating the ~art~ from a bunch of random computer equipment; several (x) comfy pieces of furniture slightly too large for armchairs but slightly too small for couches, perhaps armcouches or couchairs, and also a couple (2) of actual couches; one (1) raised platform with a cushy armchair and reading light and microphone; one (1) makeshift bar and ticket counter; some (~) white bookshelves with misc old books on them; and one (1) plastic armless shop mannequin, naked save for a red fedora.

The reading itself was pretty good - writers of varying levels of officialpublishedness sat in the Chair and read things, and the rest of us sipped beer, champagne or champagne inexplicably infused with small amounts of liquer (which did nothink) while periodically being jumped on by the small dog belonging to the older blonde author of an erotic narrative involving a theme park being bombed in world war two4. The most prominent personage in attendance was Louis Nowra, which was fairly impressive. His story involved some girls being raised by dingoes5 though, idk, not my genre. Another memorable story was about a twelve year old boy pretending to be a superhero by leaving his neighbours notes about their flat tires. It was kind of adorable!

After that finished up I made the slightly drunken trek back to the Townie to rejoin my boyfriend, who had gotten even drunker in my absence and proceeded to spend the entire walk back to his house earnestly explaining his lefty philosophotheological position on feminism, monogamy and the trials of being a middle-class white male raised on a steady diet of Marx and Goldman and therefore living in constant terror of accidentally oppressing someone. It was also kind of adorable :P

On Wednesday I attended a birthday thing for Pat from WriteSoc, despite heavy forebodings - not that WriteSoc aren't good people, I was just feeling a bit worn out thinking about the many things I had planned for that week - and whatayaknow, I ended up losing my phone (on a bus), water bottle (at the pub) and hat (likewise). Don't go out when you're groggy, Maggie. But anyway it was a fun night, I failed spectacularly at trivia and let some writesoc dudes steal half the pizza I inadvisably bought for dinner and drank some more vodka.

Thursday morning I headed out to Botany Depot to get my phone back, which involved some tricky bus-hopping and at one point landed me unexpectedly in Mascot. Then I hung out with my brother at the library for a bit and went on to UNSW's CSE Revue, PACMAN: The Dark Byte, which was somewhat less racist than last year and had a great video sketch involving an Inception parody. Also good choreography as usual but this time it was quite hard to see the ~smooth mooves~ because the snazzy backdrop with the pacman-pill rows of lights had apparently been plugged into a nuclear reactor, so I spent most of the dance scenes squinting and holding my arms in front of my face at various right angles to see if I could block the flashing dots and still be able to see the dancers. They really should have had an epilepsy warning on the doors, is all I'm saying. Afterwards it turned out that the guy I spent the whole show thinking "you look oddly similar to Benedict Cumberbatch" at was in fact [livejournal.com profile] shorelle's new boyfriend.

Then I spent most of Friday frantically writing poetry for the assignment that was due that day, lol, whoops. I had been scribbling down lines in my notebook all week but putting it together was quite nailbitey. I think it turned out nicely though! Also on Friday evening I went to a performance with my family of Eastern European music by the Volotinsky trio. Much of it involving a Cimbalom, which is a beautiful instrument - it's basically the bones and sinews of a piano. I mean, pianos are an odd kind of combination of strings and percussion, but it's all hidden away. Pull its teeth and flay its skin and what's left is strings and hammers. The Cimbalom is 76 strings played by hitting them with little curvy sticks with rubber bits, and it sounds amazing. Looks amazing in concert, too, the woman playing it was so energetic - the way good drummers are, and she was basically drumming, only with tune instead of rhythm. Also her golden dress was mesmerisingly shiny. There were two dudes onstage with her: my old guitar teacher on cello and stage banter, and the composer of most of the pieces on guitar or dombra which is a kind of balalaika. They played many original pieces based off of Eastern European folk music, and then for some reason Flight of the Bumblebee. After that the guitarist left the stage and was replaced with three violins and a double bass (the woman playing it may have been slightly shorter than her instrument, I was impressed). These continued playing for long enough that my brother went to sleep, which frankly I was also tempted by, as my grandmother subtly asked how my boyfriend's parents felt about me sleeping over in their house. Long concert was long6.

The weekend was a bit calmer, I did go to see Alexander for a bit but he was neck deep in assessments so I let him lecture me about lady anarchists in Spain for a bit and then went home. On Monday Alice postponed our planned lunch until today at the last minute because she'd disassembled her computer in a fit of rage and WOW-withdrawal and had to put it back together again before she forgot what she'd done with all the parts, so I spent some time with my family and tried to calm my mother down from her course-planning-induced frenzy by visibly doing housework, and worked on that little perzine for TINA. I spent tuesday morning writing more stuff for that, and then went to see Al and scrounge off his dad's photocopier. Al, having been procrastinating 20-hour days by this point, napped out by nine (I woke him up briefly to see if he wanted to keep working and his eyes were literally entirely red, he was like a less angsty Scott Summers).

So there I was, rummaging through my sleeping boyfriend's stationary drawer and cutting up bits of ramble about birds and my hair and fridge narnia. Alexander had obviously not had a physical paper related project to do since grade nine, because the first glue stick I found had literally solidified. More worryingly, considering I had somehow ended up spontaneously sketching little illustrations, so had the only eraser I could find, which now vaguely resembled chalk. But I figured any pencil work I did would not show up in photocopy under the ink tracing7. And hey, for someone who hasn't drawn anything in some time, I think I did pretty well! I also had to cut stuff up quite oddly to make it fit (the next day when Jenn was having her twitter freak-out about which fonts to use for her zine, I facepalmed massively at the realisation that stuff would have fit JUST FINE if I had REDUCED THE FONT SIZE) but I suppose a few crooked lines add authenticity!

In the morning I sheepishly asked Al's dad if I could use his photocopier. He said no, it was broken, but I could use this newfangled multi-whatsit contraption he'd recently bought instead. Somehow this ended with me standing next to him and wringing my hands as he fiddled with paper feeds and did most of the work for me. To be fair, a) it was a VERY newfangled contraption and b) it was on top of a cabinet and I would have needed a stepladder to see the top of it8. That done I headed off to Ashfield to crash [livejournal.com profile] artsnobsolution's house and collating equipment. I hung around Ashfield mall till Nat came to pick me up (Ashfield Library: TINY. Apparently they're renovating everything but that little room) and then trial-and-errored the shit out of her paper guillotine and long stapler. Guys, did you know, you're not actually supposed to whack the top of the stapler really hard? Apparently I have just had shit staplers.

Anyway, the end result was ZIIIIIIINES! I am quite excited, this is my first zine that is just my writing and not WriterSoc stuff.

...and today I hung out with Alice and ate cupcakes and impulse-purchased comics before coming home to finish writing this LUDICROUS ESSAY OF A BLOG POST, OH MY GOD, YOU GUYS, WHAT THE HELL.

What have I been up to since I last posted? EVERYTHINNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNG.




1 LAST Monday *looks sheepish*
2 Thank you, [personal profile] jkrockin, you are entirely responsible for this figure of speech entering my vocabulary.
3 Also, spent way too long walking behind this one woman going in the same direction, which made me feel awkward about singing under my breath as I do when walking semi-deserted streets.
4 The third or fourth author to read began by apologising for not deviating from the unintentional "women's issues" theme of the night, before proceeding to read aloud her draft of a touching and hilarious story about abortion clinic waiting rooms.
5 Okay, Tasmanian Tigers, but dingoes are inherently funnier creatures :P
6 Heh, long entry is long too, BUT NOW DO YOU SEE WHAT KIND OF WEEK I AM HAVING.
7 Of course, the only ink I had was blue.
8 The men in my boyfriend's family are REALLY FUCKING TALL.

Date: 2010-09-30 11:47 pm (UTC)
jkrockin: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jkrockin
Goddamnit, Maggie, why do you people blame me for EVERYTHING?

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