Saturday, May 7, 2011

No one in the world wants to talk to me

So last night was Saturday night and not sure why, I felt rather sad. 

Not pokey fun I'm-sitting-next-to-Lisa-Simpson sad.
Just sad. 

In a sentence, it was all an accumulation of all things dead and alive within me and just the dormancy of forces that usually balance them out - and I didn't really have anyone I wanted to talk to.

My brothers are home, and I have great friends, but sometimes it just gets too close to home.
When they know you and your way - the idea that they can vividly visualise your emotions disheveling your world around you to that point of painful recognition frightens me, and in times like these, I prefer space.

ANYWAY, in a nutshell, I decided I would use my Skype subscription ($15 p/month for unlimited landline calls to USA, UK, AUS & NZ) to ring a perfect stranger.

BUT, I wanted to make sure they couldn't figure out who I was in case they wanted to report me to a suicide hotline or the cops for harassment.
(I'm not suicidal, just emotionally tapped)
Therefore NO law enforcement, NO royal affiliations and NO investigative departments.

So I decided I'd ring France first.

Last week, I'd Skyped my parents' hotel in Paris and had a dilemma. 
Thing is, I know ENOUGH FRENCH to get me by on simple conversations and could've easily asked to connect to my parents.
But something about real French people intimidate me and take me back to being a mute 3 year-old.
So I held the entire conversation in a 3-way: me, the receptionist & Google Translate.

BUT TODAY, I didn't want to get stuck with pissy hotel receptionists ... so I started with confidence in the ice cream shops:

I think they generally tried to carry a conversation (because I said I was calling from Australia and it seemed to humour them) but most sounded busy and I think one called me a cabbage or pet or something.

So then I thought, Mele, Pulu + Emma are going to New York soon.


Well, these people kept hanging up before I could even explain what was going on. 
I'd start telling them I'd like some pizza but can't order any because I haven't decided, and they hang up on me e.g.

ME: Hi, I'm Catherine
THEM: Yeah
ME: What's your name?
THEM: Uh hum, what can we get you?
ME: Um hmm... I don't know
THEM: Well you can call back when you do
ME: Oh wait!  How ... is the day?
THEM: Wha-?
ME: Mine's pretty dull, it's almost morning here - 
THEM: Listen, we don't have time to play around we have a business to run. Call us back if you want some pizza, we deliver, bye.

It sounded like they were quite busy, or just not in the mood to exchange dialogue.
But whatever, I didn't even get that offended, because secretly it felt like I was undercover on a suspect on Law & Order: SVU.

Maybe it was an area thing, in terms of pace.
The stereotype of New York is 'the city that never sleeps/constantly busy blah blah'.

I love Big Bang Theory, and if you watch it, you know Penny's from Omaha, Nebraska.

I didn't care if we talked about my problems, or how they husked their corn, or if their citizens used the pun 'OmaHAHAHA' or whatever.


The last resort:

Yep, Stoysich House of effing Sausage in Omaha, Nebraska. 

I thought they'd be all 'family style' and chat away like talanoa, but they said they were busy and hung up on me all four times I tried to TALK. 
I practically pegged rocks at them e.g. How are the animals in Omaha?  How long has your shift been today? I only just watched Fried Green Tomatoes for the first time last week, have you seen it?


So I just had a great day out today and see I'd written this this morning with a blackened heart ... and it's MOTHER'S DAY of all days' gosh ... I'll take a nap and write something happy after.

Sunday, March 27, 2011


One day I will sit my grandchildren down and tell them the story about how in one weekend - my dreams came true. 

For one thing, 'sup bitches - the last WEEK has been slapstick comedy. 

So I was in Hoi An - with a delayed flight that should've been back in Hanoi by lunchtime - but got me back at 8PM instead. 
Ashton was heading to a martini night at this hotel, so I was just gonna go home, dress up and join her.

At the airport carousel, collecting luggage and I get this:

Ashton was about to lay her saliva on the ground the Backstreet Boys would walk on, the bottoms of their shoes ready to lick it all up - and I could not join in. 

I grabbed my luggage, got in a cab and listened to some crap Top 40 to make my own party in my head.
Yeah, didn't happen.
But then Ashton rang and said they'd done the red carpet - everything was done and that she'd come get me. 


So our martini night was at the bottom, whilst their VIP party was at the hotel rooftop. 

Security was blankets thick, but after indulging in our own event's luxuries, decided we were ballsy enough to play security. 


Anh-Tuan, the rooftop bar manager, walked us in the lift and led us to the 19th floor up to the bar
We'd been there for an event the week before so at least layout was familiar and we didn't look too out of place. 
Ashton's unfortunate acquaintance, Long (who she's ashamed to be associated with) apparently followed us up too, and stood beside us. 

AND THEN MY LIFE FLASHED BEFORE MY EYES, and this long line of chicks pass and Ashton was like 'THERE'S HOWIE D!" and we both turned and seriously? 
The wind passed my stomach through my throat and I could barely catch a damn BREATH.
Howie D is RIGHT THERE. 
Like look-at-your-fist-and-smash-it-in-your-FACE RIGHT THERE! 
That's where Howie D was!

And I did nothing. Got scared.

I would say that was the most unfortunate part of the evening, but no.
Long grabs Howie D.
Long stares at him solemnly. 
"If you need help pumping up, give me a call!" he barks and shoves him a business card. 

The World reacts:

Howie D looks like this:

"Okay great! Thanks, man!"

Long backwardly spent the rest of the night with one line of dialogue to me: 
"That was your favourite Backstreet Boy?! I totally gave you an opening - I can't believe you didn't take it!"

Fork your throat, Long.

SATURDAY: Concert Day!

Woke up, went to church and came home to rest. 
At 3PM, we realised that the tour's name was 'THIS IS US' and we didn't even know a single song off the album.
So we downloaded it on iTunes and played it on repeat for 2 hours.

Ate Eggs Benedict for dinner at Puku's.

Get to concert: BITCHIN'
The place was frighteneningly packed with volunteers in yellow shirts EVERYWHERE. 
Apparently the stage setup went that volunteers that weren't on shift would mosh, and then vip seating, then us, then general seating, then STADIUM.
The place was frighteningly packed - but our seats were sick, as was our view. 

Many poor concert-goers are short.
And to compensate, they decided to stand up on their chairs and block my view.
We yelled at them.
Then losers from the back just left their seats, jam through and in front of our rows, and climb these seats again - completely ignorant little jackals.
I saw no Backstreet Boys
I saw butt crack.

Dialogue between myself, and person in front who didn't even belong there:

ME: Excuse you, GET OFF THE SEAT, we can't see!
HIM: Is this your seat?
ME: No, but we can't see!
HIM: Well, F&*^ off! Is this your seat?
ME: Get off we can't even see! Where did you even come from?
HIM: If this is not your seat, shut the f&$# up!
ME: [It doesn't matter what I said. I said it passionately]

I pondered whether it was worth getting kicked out of the concert in the first 4 minutes.
The guy sized me up. His girlfriend looked frightened.

ASHTON: He's not even worth it!
ME: But I can't see ANYTHING!
ASHTON: Don't worry, you can stand in my place. It's okay, I'm tall, I can see anyway.

The sacrifices that friends make for each other ... :)

BUT my problems were that:
1) If I didn't egg this kid on, I couldn't provoke him and give him his cummupence. I don't fight, but I know how to be annoying and it was super convenient that he came bite-sized fiesty.
2) Ashton would have to make a sacrifice for such a little prick. WWJD.

No opening act EXCEPT for this super sick DJ who took over the starts and in between sets.
THEN BSB: All the best songs were played and mixed around and we had so much fun dancing!
They danced hard to every song, the routines were cute and cheesy, they jumped all over the stage and through the crowd AND WE WERE TRANSPORTED BACK TO TWEEN-TOWN 1999.

CEMENTED GOAL: We must meet them.

Sunday Morning:
Every single volunteer told us that Backstreet was at the Hilton.
We went early, got ourselves jasmine tea + pain au chocolat and pretended to be guests. 
The DJ from last night's set is just standing in the lobby!

 Our server approaches us, and we got the feeling she was gonna kick us out.

SERVER: Did you know the Backstreet Boys are staying in this hotel?
US: Uh ... no! Really? You're joking!
SERVER: Yes! They check out in 15 or 20 minutes. If you sit over there (points to elevators) you will get to meet them!


Nick and AJ extract from the lifts and walk right in front of us.
We chat. They are super nice. But they got rushed out to the airport ASAP, and we couldn't get a picture with A.J.
But that's okay.
And then we're told that Brian and Howie D had flown out home straight after the concert last night.
Oh well :)
Our adorable server, Nga, comes and just as excited as us - she checks excitedly over our own pictures and thinks it's awesome!


Friday, March 25, 2011

My name is Howie D - and this is how we do

I set myself a goal back in high school that I would once be in the physical presence of the Backstreet Boys.

Like a radius. Like a 500 metre radius.
That means I would be within 500 metres of the Backstreet Boys.

Now I can't explain this goal without explaining that I could have had ace seats to one of their best concerts.

Could have, but didn't.

See those two tweedle dumplings over there, on the right? ------>
That's Joanne and Roselyn.

INT. HIGH SCHOOL (true story)
Roselyn was like 'Joanne, my cousin has a crush on you. Want to come to the Backstreet Boys concert with us?'

In my head, Joanne shook her head.

JOANNE: "Oh no, we musn't go! Guilt is trickling so fast through me now, I think I've just wet myself. I would rather give up this opportunity for your cousin to stare at my sexy back hair and let my great friend, Catherine, live her dream by seeing the Backstreet Boys live from those great seats you have!"

ROSELYN: "How about no"

JOANNE: "Okay"

So AFTER they went to this concert - both returned to school and told EVERYBODY about it; with the stipulation that their betrayal never got back to me.

Long story short, I found out nine weeks later

SO, my dear friend, Ashton lives in Hanoi, Vietnam now.


They're playing My Dinh National Stadium to 55,000 invisible people on the 26th of March.

Anyway, to participate in this epic 

An article that praises this concert as a tourism opportunity states:

"Minister Hoang Tuan Anh emphasized that the number of fans will be huge so security, traffic and habits and customs must be guaranteed."

There'll probably be a buttload of security, but we want to meet them.

It's such a selfish thing to assume that mere strangers that project themselves to the public are simply yours for the taking.

But Oprah gave some 16 year old her Backstreet Boys wet dream even though she would have been a toddler during their crushing seizing of the pre & teen girl market - so forgive me for thinking my aspirations deserve some belated grasp too.

Ashton awesomely says we will meet them.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Moon burn me

I'm in Vietnam now.
I'll talk about this town later, but this one time, we went out.

I didn't take many pictures, because I didn't really remember I had a camera.

But I know this much.

I don't like when dopey ass people hit on my friends.

I know it's so necessary to have one at every dive, bar or wherever the night takes you, but still... it's so rude.

If you're going to take somebody who doesn't belong to you - do it with conviction.
Decide you want something, and with her permission - get it.

Or if you're exactly that kind of hanger-on fobber that swings off your arm like a monkey waiting to be thrown a banana - you're lazy. Just lazy.

It's nice to make new friends - I've only just reported to my untouched independence and it's the most liberating experience of my life - but it's not cool to be sloppy.

Now I had my own fun, but this drove me CRAZY.

That person kissing up Bos there is MOON.

Moon was bagging on and on about how he was going to marry her, wanted her phone number (sorry Joanne, I gave him yours) and then he gave me the kickback throw nod, like he was basking in the lusciousness of someone licking his feet.

And you know what happened?

Moon patted my arm with his cigarette and burned me.

Moon, you don't deserve my friend.
I know you tried to charm her by pinching her, and proclaiming her yours to every patron in the bar, and then kissing your dribbly mouth all over her cherub cheeks - BUT SHE DOESN'T WANT YOU, because I would never let her want you.


Actually, this is just a blog post about people that burn other people.

Good morning! What'd you eat? I got french fries!
And I hung out with a man who looks EXACTLY like George Clooney!

Monday, October 25, 2010

So I was hungry

But there was nothing to eat

I tried to peel an orange. But it was too hard.

Pickle jar didn't open either. 

I had ice blocks.

And fresh breath.

And then I looked out the window, and was like, 'someone put sprinklers in the front yard!'

Isn't that nice??

Thursday, October 21, 2010

I have arrived.

The 6 hour plane ride and 12 hour bus trip brought me right back to the desert heat and red dirt between my toes. And dragging dining chairs to the kitchen bench so Mele and I can share a smorgasboard of food whilst balancing the world between us.
I really did miss that.

So, I haven't left the house. Meet my company.

 Toy Story 3 Personalised Cards - FREE
I sat next to this brilliant lady on the plane. 
53, with a short, frosted haircut, and wearing so-clash-it's-good prints - and weighed down in a crapload of sparkle that could've paid my family's mortgage.
She loved *bling*, she was a general manager for a merchandising company, and she'd grown up on a farm a few hours away from where I'm staying now. 
We got on SWELL - and she gave me her card, and sadly, mine were packed in my suitcase so we couldn't do an equal exchange. 
I'll mail it.

Meet my clock!
She is the one named Sailor Moon.
Gordon opshop - 50c
I took the batteries out right after taking these pictures. Not interested in the purpose.

Veronica Mars DVD Boxset (borrowed)
I started watching these only months before the show got canned off some borrowed external harddrive.
Was not interested in this show at all - and remember avoiding it by sharing a lounge chair with my buddas :) watching every episode of House instead. 
But AFTERWARDS - I locked myself for days in my room just to watch Veronica Mars. 

Mrs May's Pumpkin Crunch 
Woolworths - $4.65 
Got introduced to this stuff in Darwin with Chris. 
We're pretty sure we'll just eat these at the movies instead of Burger Rings & Goodygoodygumdrops.

Instant Pho (Viet soup) 
Chinese grocer - 69c
Worth it?
I prefer the real thing. But I like rice noodles.

My Vicks stick
Woolworths - $6
At least I can breathe now.

Cos I'm jivin, YO.

Green Masala tea
Almond Butter
Strawberry Nesquik
There's nothing *purplesneakers* or *lytpinkpolkadot* hipster kitschy about my life or the things I eat or drink.
It's just friggen yummy!

This is the way to butter a person's heart. 

This is a portrait of ME from the eyes of a 16 year old girl.

... brb, getting a makeover.