Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Pantry Fresh: Australia

Here's the Ozzie version. I was gonna put it on Facebook, but decided against it. I'm glad you came to read it.

I was at a petrol station the other day, and they were advertising for their coffee. Apparently the coffee is sweet as, because they call it "pantry fresh coffee". So I went up to the bloke behind the counter and said "look mate, pantries aren't fresh". I mean come on, pantry fresh sounds like what a bogan offers his guests. "G'day, this coffee is heaps good- it's pantry fresh! I bought it on 25/8/2008 from Woolies! Just scrape off the mold and it's fair dinkum! Hey, are you hungry? Because I can shout you some pantry fresh bananas from 16/9/2007, gooey and delicious!"

6 Months

So, if you read my last post, I'm totally a wanker (pronounced "wanka", I believe...). I've been in this country 6 months exactly now. I don't know what I really want to write, but for some reason I feel like commemorating this milestone. It's a bit weird to get excited about. I mean, it's no small achievement for me to have left, but I didn't celebrate that milestone. I left on February 5th; August 5th came and went and I didn't even notice. Maybe it's the fact that leaving your home isn't as big a deal. I don't know. Oh, by the way, it's 9(ish) on the morning of 8/22. I work today, but not for another 4 hours. I like how I wrote that in case you were worried about me (that's right, you! The reader! 4th wall consider yourself officially busted!).
I'm beginning to feel the effects of homesickness. There are things that I just miss. I see summer going on back home and feel like I'm missing out. That's not to say that I'm not having incredible experiences here, but it does mean that I see everything on facebook and can't help feeling lonely. I know that I use this place to mope, and I am sorry for that (not really). Let's try to keep upbeat.

I'd originally had this grand scheme idea for what I wanted to post today. I'd thought that I wanted to write a list of things that I miss about home on my 6th month anniversary, one thing for every letter (I know, still a wanker), but now that I'm here it feels too depressing (and also douchy). I'm not going home soon, and I'm ok with that. I think what happens now instead is what I'd originally planned for the end of my tenure here- a non-alphabetical list of things that I really love here:


Ok, just made that horrible list and immediately regret it. And scratch that last sentence, I deleted the horrible list. Turns out I mostly like food. I guess it's mostly food that I really like?
I still have a lot of this country to see. I was talking at work about how similar this country is to my own, and my international co-workers asked how much I'd been out of Melbourne. Not much is the answer. The thought has been that I'll use the money I save here to travel back through Asia and Europe, but maybe I need to use it to travel Australia. I still want to learn how to surf. I know I can do that here in the summer, but that doesn't negate the fact that I need to go to other parts of the country. For fuck's sake I haven't even seen Sydney yet. NOR A KANGAROO! But I can't. I have to remain here to finish up the job here. It's only about 2 and half more months.

I have been doing Australia things though. I went to a footy (Aussie Football) game last weekend. The Richmond vs Carlton game. The weird thing about footy is that it's mostly a Melbourne game, and most of the teams are in the Melbourne area so people just pick a team. That's not to say that people switch. Once you have a team you have a fucking team. Mine is Richmond; Richmond was the first place I stayed in Australia when all the hostels were full. That seemed like a fitting reason to me. Anyway, I bought a team scarf, which is what people do when they support a team apparently. Richmond lost, but it was fun to go. They sell pies (meat pies) for like 4 bucks, which at a stadium is pretty fucking good. Also, $21 to get in is pretty reasonable. I may go to another game, but we'll see. The season ends in about a month.

Not probably the most interesting note to leave on. Sorry. I recognize that I don't usually end these posts gracefully. I think I'm going to go up to the tallest place in Melbourne today. I'll post a picture of it.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Mid August and This is the Best Title I Could Think Of

It's been quite a while since I posted anything on here. If you've been wondering if something has happened to me, the answer is not really. I'm still at the call center job; I'm still in the house; I'm still Ju-wallowing here down under (I BET YOU GUYS THOUGH I FORGOT ABOUT THAT, BUT I TOTALLY DIDN'T!!!). Actually, as of Thursday (uh, I think?) I will have been in Australia for 6 months exactly. Come to think of it, I was (mostly) planning on writing on that day, but since I feel like writing now, saving writing until then just seems a bit wanky. Which is a word I definitely would never have used back home. It's been a bit of a concern of mine, the whole foreign phrase thing. I've started using "mate" quite frequently. That one I'm alright with, but it's sneaky the way it slips into my vernacular. I catch myself saying shit as an adjective (rather than "shitty") a lot more often than I'd like. I don't like it. Maybe it's not so bad, but I certainly feel like that douchebag who comes back from abroad and won't shut the fuck up about it.

Actually, that last part I struggle with a fair bit. I don't know how to talk to friends/family about my trip. I'm very self-conscious about trying not to make an entirely one-sided conversation, and discussing my life here a very easy topic to ramble on about. I'm not sure how this is supposed to go. I mean, my life has been so drastically different, and sometimes the static world just keeps going in the same direction. I honestly don't mean to be a jackass. Sorry if I suck at talking about it is what I guess I'm getting at.

I want to mention that I have been writing, but I haven't been thrilled with what I've been writing. I may post what I've written, but there's a decent chance I won't. At least not for now. I tried free writing and didn't like what came out. Not because it wasn't honest, but because it was. This blog reflects what my soul in a lot of ways and I try to be open, but some doors are better left closed. At least publicly. Suffice to say that my past still haunts me more than I'd like. Let's go back to my job though.

Foxtel is fine. I'm just shy of about halfway done with my tenure. For a terrible job, it's actually quite good. Well, not the job itself, but the fringe benefits. The people on my team are great, and I don't think it would be as bearable. We're a ragtag group of (mostly) expats. We've all gone out drinking quite a few times. And not just happy hour, one or two drinks kind of drinking. Like "I missed my tram stop because well past tipsy" kind of drunk. It's quite nice to have normal people who I can just go out drinking with. I even went up to the mountains over my birthday with one of my coworkers. Which was actually quite an experience. AH fuck, I realize that the trip was actually quite worth chronicling, but I don't have the stamina for it now. I promise it'll come.

The other significant benefit of working at Foxtel is all the material I've been getting. It's a few months in and I have a series of jokes that are entirely from the experience, plus the ability to adapt others to the situation.

The comedy situation is moving in a positive direct in general. I like the think that I've got 20-25 minutes out of my experience in Australia, but realistically it's probably more like 15. Nothing to sneeze at, but definitely shy of the hour that I need before April. I know that the full hour won't be based entirely on Australian written jokes, but the more I can get out of it the better. I have to put some significant time in arrangement currently. The Post-It Notes will help (I bought Post-It Notes btw. I don't remember if I mentioned that in previous posts or not...). I know I'll get where I need to be by then. I'm also thinking about trying to get it into the Twin Cities Fringe next year and do the hour, fresh off my hour of MICF. Who's to say if that plan will ever come to fruition, but for now it's something I'm definitely thinking about.

Ok, I'm mentally crashing. It's time to stop writing. Sorry guys, I'll have to update you on my riveting life later.