Archive | May, 2010

Oh perfect quixotic pixie girl

28 May

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is a movie I need to watch every few months to feel normal. Usually at season’s turn. I can barely fathom, let-a-lone conjure the words for how close to mapping my soul this film came.

I guess the thing about Eternal Sunshine is the leads. I mean, there is also all the visuals, the score, the complete commitment to the human in what could have been a dinky plot device, but truth is it’s Winslet and Carrey that just make sense. He is so clear in his portrayal of boyish doubt, in all its charm and idiocy, that when he extends a sleeve  and caresses a childhood bicycle seat, all things gentle and forgotten come pouring back and things get pretty dusty on my couch.  (Thankyou filmspotting)

Then, there is that woman. I went into the cinema already with a truck sized crush on Kate Winslet. When Leo lets go at the end of Titanic, it’s a travesty of masculinity. You can’t hold on for her?! You deserve to die man.  I hope a shark eats you on the way down.

I mean, she’s such a ….. broad, you know. Fearless. Probably shame me over a pint (Though I’d have her measure on West Coast Coolers) and a smile that just rings, I like men. Really like ’em.

With Clem layered on top, or Clementine, from Clemency as Joel proffers, I pretty much see every woman I have ever fallen for. From that troublesome Russian at eighteen to Cyclone Leah. Clementine is demonstrative, fragile, scarred – wounds that  importantly, need me for repair. She’s volatile as all get out, but retains a hum for the quieter things. Smart. Funny. Spontaneous. Basically, a raging contradiction with me at the core, trying to fix her like a woman’s a shelf.

So, in winter 2009, whilst visiting my gal in NYC,  I jumped the Amtrak out to Montauk just so I could stand on the station where Clementine first flirts with Joel. Well, that’s not true, I think she first flirts in that lovely cafe, but after walking the mile into town, that was all shut up for the off-season.

Location stalking is weird I know. I’ve often mocked the habit in others. I mean I also love Jaws, but unless I’m gonna see a massive shark fin slicing through that Martha’s Vineyard pond, I’m not too interested in seeing that pond. What I demand, in other words, is a complete recreation of the scene, setting and context. A vague shape to squint and kinda nod at is just not enough.

But. But. But. Montauk station delivered in spades.  I stepped off that train, took one look to my right and I was there, buzzing with the same elation I felt when I first saw that orange parker march up the walkway towards Joel. The light was the same, the station the same.


Sure, Montauk in winter is basically gulag with a bait shop and the beach is just sand, not fluttering snow, but this is not real, real life, it’s the magic of shape, shadow and memory…each prayer accepted, and each wish resigned.


Back in the wall of boy

24 May

Theatresports. All boys intra-school. Round 3.

Player A enters scene and points at fellow player.

A: You’re a fag!

Pause scene. Host  side-coach– ‘Start positive’

Player A nods, re-enters scene and  re-points at fellow player

A: I like fags.







Singing my sister down

Bullet in the brain

Summer of the beautiful white horse



Dating frenzy dot com

20 May


I’m rifling through a drawer of notepads,  chinese menus and pen lids, when I come across a list of women’s names scrawled in my lumbering font. Now, usually any old distraction is good enough for me to linger away from the-work-at-hand, ooh staples…I should probably count those, but this has me dropping my get-things-done face guilt free.

It’s a list of the women I net dated in my two-year frenzy back-in-the-day. There are forty-two names on the list. That’s a new woman every 2.43 weeks. For a bloke whose fling meter is way into single figures, that’s staggering.

Back then, I was crawling through the fear and doubt of the end of a seven year relationship and just needed to be liked. And on the net, if you can author an online profile sans GSOH, LBW, EGFL or IABT* you can live like a well-liked king, or at least a glutton, and I stuffed my fucking face.

Still, by net dating standards, 2.43 is limpet paced. It’s not unusual for a gal to line up Romance4U for drinks after work Thursday, catch a  flick at Chaddy with a AdventrGY on Friday, do a Sat Brunswick brunch with FreeASUlikeit then hit a swank Thai with DeadInside on Saturday night. Sunday is a day of prayer.

And that’s the thing about net dating. It’s all about the beginnings. And then more beginnings. The moment the shiny mask turns a shade dusty real, the alarm sounds. It’s kinda like being given a new puppy every day. A puppy with extreme low self-esteem that you can have sex with.

So you scroll through pages and pages of photos and self authored descriptions, like Ebay, except they’re people. You click, you bid, you wait and see. There was chook-feeding, sending out multiple ‘virtual kisses’ (Oh God, that term still makes me vomit in my mouth a bit) to as many women who vaguely caught your fancy with the theory being a thousand seeds would fetch  a dozen birds. Then onwards you cull. I guess the meatworld equivalent would be perching by the female toilets and gushing hi to each entrant.

I preferred the longer game. A considered email in response to specific profiles. Wow?? You own pot-plants too?!

Consequently, I like to congratulate myself that I can still put a detail to each name on that list. I’m not sure it means anything of value.

But, there was Marcela, the Carlton feminist who liked her men to take charge, but only on her moustachioed terms.

Sharon the Bundeberg cutter, with whom with I shared long, elegant MSN chats on all things painful and pure, often drinking myself sober in the process, till she deleted me for ‘feeling too much.’

Kylie from the hills who I didn’t have the courage to say no to.

Yvette with the kids who got engaged to another net guy four days after we met and shagged.

Yvonne who hissed, “You’re a cunt and you’ll always be a cunt.”

Sam the hot Brit who wasn’t the least bit attracted to me but just seem relieved to find a guy who knew the difference between a metaphor and simile.

Jess, who gave me that long look of disappointment when I lied to her.

Louisa who…well….the more horrible we were to each other the better the sex was. She also had a cupboard JUST for chocolate biscuits.

I’m cherry-picking of course. It wasn’t all madness. There was Smirsten. Lovely Smirsten; who slowed things down and defined it all by saying, “Your profile picture looks like a drag queen” and later, when the sadness had resettled, “Oh nugget, you’re just not ready.”

Forty-two names. Two years. It was an education. The irony of finding this list is that I was searching for a draft of an old story I wrote during that time. It wasn’t about net dating. That story is unwritable. You see, the good stuff, the really good stuff, is too private and subtle to be teased out. It thrives outside its birth context.  The rest, well, is just fury and trivia.

*Good Sense of Humour, Love Bush-Walking,  Easy Going Fun-loving, Into Anal Big-time.