Posts Tagged ‘university’

To The Girl I Used To Be

June 30, 2010

This is a letter to my 16 year old self inspired by the lovely Kezza’s most recent post If I Knew Then What I Know Now.

Dear Luli,

Boys can be rats. You’re messing with one of the worst of the bunch, the rat who pretends to be a cute little mouse. Look inside to see whether his actions match up with your morals, because if they don’t, the boy is not worth the trouble. Trust me, even if he leaves now, there will be plenty of chances for you to change your mind, he always comes running back. Realising you’re worth more than his constant bullshit becomes a source of ego and inspiration for you later though, so I dunno. The shattering of your trust for men might be more precious.

Forget the cool kids! They are ridiculous and you know it! You’re too smart to waste all your weekends drinking until you stumble and befriending mean people who mean nothing to you in the long run. Some of them even turn on you. Your “best friend” especially, but she does it in a more elongated, tortuous, slow and malicious way that does not become apparent for years. All those popular boys are just pigs in the end. They hit their girlfriends and get drug addictions and have 3 baby mamas each.

Run away from them and go back to your friendly, sweet boys. One of which you know has a crush on you, who you have a crush on too. If you pass up the chance he gives you, you will regret it forever. He goes into a long term relationship with a chick who makes your life hell for a while, and is still seeing till this day! You’re still best friends with him, but there’s always a sad spot inside that wishes things went differently that will probably always be there.

You were blessed with a brain, with creativity and wit, so use these gifts! When you try, you never fail, so try harder. I know its easy to just coast by without doing too much and still getting ahead, but if you put a little bit of effort in you could go so far. Doing it now will make it easier for you in university, otherwise you start to lose motivation due to lack of practice and organisation. Studying is fun, you love to learn and to be an expert on different things. Don’t waste that brain of yours, engage and preserve it.

The person you are deep down is a lot cooler than you realise, so stop trying to hide her. Stop clamming up in social engagements, you’re actually good at talking and you’re very friendly. If you let other people notice then you would have a lot more fun in uni and at work. You learn to do it eventually of course, but the years you spend being a snob rubbed off on you and now your body language is probably always going to scream ‘unapproachable’. You are outgoing and eccentric, and the sooner you start letting that out the better your life gets.

Go easy on people, ok? Especially your family, they end up becoming the closest and most loyal people in your life. Nobody is perfect, and you can’t even live up to your own expectations, so when they do something you don’t like cut them a bit of slack and try to be kinder. Treat people and their feelings gently and strive to leave only a positive imprint on the world, not a negative one. Compassion is the most beautiful quality a person can have. You have the ability to make someones day much better by just saying a kind word, or sparing a bit of change, so try to do it whenever you can.

However, don’t interpret that as to mean you can let people walk all over you. If you don’t want to do something, don’t do it. If you disagree, speak up. Don’t be bullied into anything, and never act out of fear. Look someone in the eye and tell them exactly what you think. It’s liberating. Don’t worry about what others think of you, let them think. If anything, it should amuse you that you are on their minds. People love to pull other people down, but learn to trust that your opinion is the only one that matters.

You may not realise it at this moment, but the girl you are now makes some critical decisions that shape her path for a long time to come. It’s hard to say now, being your 8 year older self, whether these slip ups have chipped away at your character for good.. or made you stronger and wiser. We will have to wait for my 8 year older self to write to me, so that we can see. You’re still hopelessly naive, so maybe we still have a chance at reversing some of the painful events that have wearied you along the way.

Be strong, Luli. Adopt cats.

Love, 24 year old you.

“If I had to do it all again

I wouldn’t take away the rain

Coz I know it made me who I am

If I had to do it all again

I learned so much from my mistakes

Thats how I know he’s watching me

Nobody knows what life may bring

It might make you happy

It might make you sad

But I know there’s a reason for everything

That’s why I keep believing

Whatever’s meant to be is gonna be..”

Further Down The River

October 7, 2009

“I’m floating down a river

Oars freed from their holds long ago

Lying face up on the floor of my vessel

I marvel at the stars

And feel my heart overflow

Further down the river..”

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Its spring time and all I want to do is float along the breeze.

I have this beautiful dream where I drift along the Mekong under a cloudy sky, while the warm wind rustles through the reeds and across my skin. I’m looking forward to a time when I can escape and rest, do nothing but enjoy the natural scene around me and find some peace. Alone.

I’ve never felt the need to run away before, but lately it’s all I can picture. I’m sick of my suburb, sick of the city, sick of the same things all the time. I don’t feel connected enough to what’s around me and I want to explore new scenes. I want to paint different landscapes in my head to remember wistfully when I grow up.

It strikes me as unusual, I never cared much for travel before. I liked visiting countries but I was always the first to get homesick. Today the idea of packing up my things and moving to Sydney, Surfers Paradise or Saigon seems like heaven. Have a goodbye party, wish my family the best and start again somewhere the sun shines more often. Somewhere I can work a silly job for enough money to cover my vodka and hangover food, that still leaves me with the energy to focus on writing completely.. for once.

I dig my toes into the sand

The ocean looks like a thousand diamonds

Strewn across a blue plain

I lean against the wind

Pretend that I am weightless

And in this moment I am happy..”

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Six months ago, the tarot reader told me that he thought I was disconnected from my course, that it wasn’t something I enjoyed or learned much from. At the time I smiled & nodded, but privately believed he was wrong. My subjects weren’t the best, but I knew it was the path I had to take to get where I wanted to go. But now.. he was so right. I hate my course. I’m doing units purely to make up the points for the paper, not because they’re teaching me anything I particularly want to learn. I already aced the subjects I thought were interesting and now I’m left with filling the requirements of my second major with subjects that mean nothing to me. I could care less about media audiences! I don’t give a shit about the culture of corporations! I don’t even like children, so why am I studying their texts?!

What does this degree mean to me? I’ve always hated that it concentrated more on the structure of writing than the craft. I want something more detailed and in-depth, something that actually excites me to learn about. I want workshops and weekly articles, I want to know what makes a good sentence and what is better left out. I’m tired of shutting up and making do, putting in the hard slog for an achievement that I don’t see any merit in.

So what should I do? Find a better course? Disengage from university and try harder to get something real happening? A freelance career or whatever? Stick it out for these last 8 or so months and just push through the painful parts? My dad would be so disappointed in me if I quit. His face is the only thing stopping me from running away and going it alone. But it’s not his life, it’s mine. And I’m not so doting that I would endure it simply to please him. Or am I?

“My biggest fear will be the rescue of me

Strange how it turns out that way, yea..

Can you show me dear

Something I’ve not seen?

Something infinitely interesting..”

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I want to be out there doing something! I hate these stupid assignments, they have nothing to do with what I envision myself partaking in as a journalist. And the worst part is that I’m planning to go back to that insufferable job again this summer, to try and make enough money to last through another uni semester, which means that if I’m not too drained from boring assignments to write, then I will be too drained from the data entry work! Thus continuing the cycle of no inspiration, no motivation, no drive or energy to write pieces that are meaningful.

I hate that my blog is neglected, it’s the only piece of me that I’m really proud of, and its falling away to some kind of misguided attempt at gaining social status. I want to write posts that are beautiful and inspiring, I want to further my technique and see where I’m going wrong and learn something that will be of value to me. I want to move forward, but all I’m doing is drifting further behind. This blog is the only thing that should be important, it’s the only real chance I have of progress, and I’ve been throwing it away. It’s no wonder I’ve felt so lost and depressed. I always thought I was the type of person who put her passion first, but evidently I have not been.

I’m miserable when I can’t write. And I have been miserable for so long, pushing this away with the idea that I was doing what I had to, to get back to where I wanted. But it’s right here, and I can’t allow myself to take it due to this overpowering need to avert ‘failure’. My parents will think I’m giving up. Why does it matter so much to me what they think? I’m the one who lives my life, I’m the one who knows what I have to do to get ahead. I’m so tired of being too tired to write. It honestly shatters me. Can you imagine the feeling of not being able to do the one thing you truly loved?

Failure, failure, failure.. I have to change something.

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“I’m building an antenna

Transmissions will be sent when I am through

Maybe we could meet again

Further down the river

And share what we both discovered

Then revel in the view

Further down the river..”

I Used To Think STFU Meant ‘Stuff You’.

December 3, 2008

stfu

One thing that completely drives me insane is unnecessary talking. Its not like I’m a fiend for silence, its just that I’m not fond of conversations that pretty much go nowhere and only serve the purpose of making the speaker feel like they know it all, or give them the chance to brag. Its probably half the reason why I don’t particularly like hanging around girls, I prefer to be around people who just say what needs to be said and leave it at that. That doesn’t mean I dislike long conversations, they are awesome, I just dislike long conversations about hair extensions and birth control.

My mum has got to be the weirdest talker I have ever known. The amount of irrelevant information she throws into a conversation is astounding to me. I’m always cutting her off or leading her to the point. If I’m already in a bad mood, just one random tangent of hers is enough to make me snap. Just to give you an idea, say I ask her for directions, this is the typical mum answer:

“Okay, you know how Blacks road goes up past the old hospital where your sister was born? Two blocks away is the street you’ll need to go on, drive down past where you’ll see a white house, Manny used to live there, then keep going and if you see a big tree hanging across an intersection, don’t turn there. There will be a diagonal road cutting across, that street passes through St Albans, and I once took a wrong turn down there and ended up in Sunshine! Go past the diagonal road and go around the roundabout, turning into the street on the right, or alternatively you could go straight and make a right at the traffic lights, but those lights have been slow since I lived there, and theres always cops around so you can’t run a red arrow. Theres a fish & chip shop on the corner thats really good, and they’re always stopping there for lunch. You remember it don’t you? The fish and chips we had after we went to Nan’s place to get the photos for your brothers 21st? Well I suppose you were young, probably only 12. So yeah, make a right there.”

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My friend Bee is notorious for doing something similar, except its more to do with the stories she tells and the irrelevant details like where she had lunch that day, and why she decided to have the fish instead of the chicken, and how that made her feel, and then so she was already a little uneasy so she went to the chemist, and then the chemist told her it was better to just drink tea, so she went out and got out the tea bags but they were mouldy, so she opened up her cupboard and realised she needed to throw a lot of stuff out, so she put the bags by the curb and forgot about them, then her boy came home later and tripped over into them and thats why he smells like cheese. You can’t even cut her off or direct the convo, because you have absolutely no idea where the story is going. The amount of background information that goes into the anecdote completely ruins any hope she had for a punchline, because its got no delivery, she’s smiling the whole way through, and you’re confused at which point you were supposed to laugh at.

I also have a couple of other chick friends who are clearly uncomfortable with any silence whatsoever, and feel like they have to fill the gap in the air with pointless words and stories. If you’re not talking and I’m not talking, its not necessarily a bad thing, we can just chill together and say nothing. I’d rather think in my head than be distracted by meaningless shit. Its like a nervous thing some people have, they’re too scared that there will be nothing to say so they go into overdrive to make sure it never happens. These people are the worst to get cornered by, because they can go on forever without stopping. I got trapped by one on Friday night and it took me about an hour to escape her clutches without being rude.

And then there are those students at uni who will ask the teacher a question, just to show off about something. For example, “With the memoir assignment, is it better to use a lot of descriptive detail, or concentrate more on character interactions, because when I go up to my cabin worth 400k in the mountains to snowboard with my professional snowboarding crew, I often pay more attention to how the rookies will speak to the professionals, rather than their inferior equipment and the ugly snowgear they are wearing.” Okay, you’re a bad ass snowboarder chick, we all acknowledge your awesomeness. But this is uni, its not about chasing the cool anymore, its about how much I can kick your ass in writing workshops.

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Or they even play it like this, “I know that in this editing class you’re teaching us to do blah blah, but when I worked in the field for two years at my fathers company, he taught me the proper way was to completely contradict your teaching methods.” That one can even be more annoying, because we all already know the answer. Forget whatever the hell you thought you knew and just follow the damn criteria. You are not the new lecturer, you are a wanker.

Its these annoying people that take over the conversations, and because they are talking you often miss out on the better stories or the more interesting jokes that someone else could have said. But no, they had to be selfish and waste all the air time! When it comes to talking, I think the old rule is golden: It is better to say nothing and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.