Sunday, November 22, 2009

Long Time Gone

I did not die or get lost on a mysterious island with polar bears and smoke monsters on my way back from Australia. I probably should have mentioned that earlier... My main problem was flying out to LA on the worst possible day ever (when Michael Jackson died). Not only did this make me lose the pool on which celebrity would die next (I had my money on you, Stephen Hawking! You let the team down!), it made travel way more difficult. I have impeccable timing. So as always happens to me, I had a very odd time that day trying to get through LAX (the worst airport I have ever been to and now hate with a passion) battling weeping freaks who flew in from all over the world as soon as they heard the news, hoping to go to his funeral. Then on my other flight, a guy had a heart attack and we had to force a landing, causing me to miss the event which was the main reason I was going to Chicago in the first place. I wanted to punch everything, it was truly infuriating.

The reason I haven't updated is not because of a lack of interesting events (far from it), but I've been busy with an internship at a local music magazine. Well, I was until I was wrongfully fired. I won't go into it, because that's unprofessional and bitchy, but let's just say it's up there in crazy boss stories with the time I was fired from the cafe in Brisbane for being a Taurus and not owning a cell phone.

So now I have extra free time for updating blogs and doing freelance work, some links to which I will post here occasionally. One of the things I did for my former internship was photograph Thursday's concert at First Unitarian Church. I had photographed them previously on Warped Tour '06 and was excited to do so again, since they've long been one of my favourite bands and put on an amazing live show. The morning of the show, my boss called to inform me I'll be not only taking live shots, but a portrait of the band too. A few minutes after I got off the phone with him, I literally threw up from nervousness. Gross, yes, but I feel that needs to be part of the story to illustrate how incredibly excited/terrified I was.

We were supposed to do the photo shoot outside the church, but there were swarms of teenage boys waiting outside, so I started taking pictures of them sitting on the steps inside. It was too boring a setting, so I spur of the moment told them to go into the daycare center room. I then instructed them to sit in the tiny kiddie chairs. Yes, I told one of my favourite bands to sit in tiny plastic chairs in a room that spelled like Cheerios and pee. I'm still reeling from the absurdity of it. The resulting photo was fantastic though, and I despise that it was never used in the article. So for the first time ever, here it is, I guarantee there are no other photos of Thursday like this.

Among my other adventures, I traveled with my roommate Katie to Lancaster to interview a band I (at first) knew little about. I will be honest and admit that I originally wanted to interview them when they were on Warped Tour just so I could go to Warped again, but it fell through. When offered to interview them at another time, I decided to go with it since they seemed interesting. Hence the long voyage to downtown Lancaster, an area I had no idea contained any sort of concert venues. I'm very tempted to post the MP3 of our interview, since it's hilarious and the word 'bro!' comes up at least three times a minute. But I sound like a twelve-year-old boy, so I'd rather not put that out into the world, ha. Here's a link to the finished article (go to pages 12 and 13):

Due to a mix-up, Katie and I were unable to see that show, but they put us on the guest list for their next show in Philly, which was last week. It was mostly us and tween girls, but we had a blast and made all the teeny-boppers jealous when the guys saw us and ran over to give us hugs and ask how we were, haha. Katie also went up to their one tech (Colton, who I mention briefly in the article) and said, "Hello! I met you when you were sleeping!" She didn't mean it to sound super creepy, but it sort of did, and I died laughing. Katie, you're awesome.

Other highlights of the past few months include dressing up with my other roomie Sean as Bill & Ted from 'Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure/Bogus Journey.' It was most excellent. Don't have any photos of that yet, but I'll put them up when I do. I had people tell them I was a convincing Keanu Reeves, not sure if I should take that as a compliment or not. Another fun dress-up opportunity was Zombie Prom, which I went to with my fellow zombie obsessed friends Paige and Anne. My favourite part was doing the zombie shuffle into a Wawa afterwards and having a horrified cashier give us weird looks as we demanded "brains! Or pretzellllllllls? Raughhhhh, if you have themmmmm. Thanksssss, aughrawrgahhhhhhhhhh!"
(Anne, me, and Paige)

Apologies again that I haven't been updating. The Awkward American is far from being over, despite the fact I'm no longer abroad. Because even in America, I'm still awkward and American, so the title will always apply. More updates soon! <3

Monday, June 22, 2009

Last Goodbyes

I know, I did it again and haven't written anything for a while. Partly because not much of interest has occurred since my birthday, partly because the Internet here continues to hate me and refuse to post photos. The one adventure I did have this last month is dependent upon several pictures, so you'll all just have to hear that one in person with a presentation.

As you may know/have guessed, I'm coming home soon. I leave for the States in a few days and then spend a few more Kerouac-ing around (buses, not hitchhiking of course) visiting friends in the Midwest before returning to Philly. Now, I don't want to sound like I'm making demands, but there are a few things you all must know:

1. I won't have an accent, I'm not Madonna. Please do not ask me to do an Australian accent, because I'm really not good at it. I mean, if you really want, I can try, but it always ends up as Kiwi instead. You might not notice, but Australians do and they get really mad at me for it, so I've just refrained from even trying.

2. I'm sorry, but "How was Australia?" will be answered with an equally vague response. Also, please tell me how you've been and not just ask me about Australia, claiming your year "hasn't been nearly as interesting." I like telling stories about my travels, but I'd like to talk about you guys too because I haven't seen you in so long!

3. I apologize in advance if I let slip a curse. I've never been one for swearing much, but it's so frequent and nowhere near as offensive here. As a result, my curse quota has risen significantly. Not to Colin Farrell level or anything, but still. My top swears are still 'crap' and 'bloody hell,' so it's not all that bad.

4. Yes, I lost weight. No, I don't know how much, but thank you. Yes, I still don't have a boyfriend. No, I do not know my grades yet.

5. I missed all of you so so much and am going to try to spend as much of my (short) summer catching up as much as I can. I'm going to be spending time with all you family folks first at the get together. But I know you'll probably want individual hangouts too. I'm definitely up for this and will do all I can, but please don't feel bad if you call up asking to go to a movie or something and I'm out with a friend. See, you have to understand that though my generation is the 'connected Internet bunch,' most of my friends have awful communication skills and they've only talked to me once or twice in the past year. Family gets first dibs and probably more over all time seeing me, but if I get a rare chance to spend time with my plan-challenged friends, I'll jump on it.

I can't wait to see everyone again! I'm disconnecting the Internet in my room soon, so I might not be able to e-mail as often, but I'll e-mail from the library when I can and at the airport before I leave. Love you! xoxo

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Twenty-One (Jump Street)!

I apologize profusely for not posting in quite some time, especially when I promised you all photos and stories from my Sunshine Coast vacation. Unfortunately, both my Internet connection and the Blogger photo uploader hate me, thus banding together to unleash much technological frustration. I’m sorry to say I’ll have to put yet another massive delay on that. Please accept the following word-heavy but hopefully humorous post as an apology.

One of the many ridiculous facts I’ve learned in my disgusting yet delightful Human Biology class is that every cell (with the exception of parts of the brain) in your body is replaced over the course of seven years. You’re literally a new person every seven years! Today I turned 21, meaning I’m in my ‘third body.’ So I figured I’d tap into that section of gray matter that’s been with me all along and have a little conversation with my ‘past selves.’

Note: For those of you unfamiliar with what I looked like, simply picture a girl version of Little Pete from ‘The Adventures of Pete & Pete’ for Seven. Fourteen was a bit like this picture of Caleb Followill (but with a way bigger nose) and Eighteen makes a cameo, she’s a less ginger female ‘Goblet of Fire’ era Ron Weasley. You all know should what I look like now, although my hair has gone a bit Nigel Tufnel the past few months.

21- "Wow, at least I've had consistently strange men’s haircuts!"

7- "Quiet, fart face!"

21- “Crap, I forgot. You’re at the stage where I was a little brat for no apparent reason.”

14- “Ooooh, what phase am I then?”

21- “If I’m not mistaken, you just started the hanging out in Target and obsessively listening to bands like Sum 41 era. I can’t believe we used to think we that was fun.”

14- “RAWK!”

21- “Your Sum 41 finger puppets are going to be stolen soon. Along with the whole backpack.”

14- *gasp* “Do I ever get my bloody little black backpack back?”

21- “No. And Deryck Whibley marries Avril Lavigne.”


7- “Haha!”

14- “Shut up, 7! George Harrison and Jack Lemon die.”

7- *breaks down crying*

21- “Hey now, stop it! Some good things happen in the future! I’m a writer and I get to go to concerts for free! Plus, I’m living in Australia! Pretty cool, huh?”

14- “Do you have a boyfriend?”

21- “Um, no.”

7- “Are you a famous writer?”

21- “Not at all.”

14- “Have you at least met Heath Ledger in Australia or something?”

21- “He’s dead too.”

14- “Why must you tell me all this?! WHY?”

21- “Because you can be a tad annoying, 14. Not as annoying as 7, but yeah. It’s nothing personal, I mean, as 14-year-olds go you aren’t bad at all. You’re just in that starting puberty thing that makes everyone a bit naturally caffeinated and spazzy at times.”

7- “I made up a story about a ghost that was so scary, nobody wanted to use the second floor bathroom. Jean peed her pants. Then I jumped over the playground fence and ran home at recess. Escaping school is fun.”

21- “You creepy little evil genius. Why couldn’t it be anyone between 3 and 6 instead of you here? They were adorable.”

14- “Well surely you aren’t the oldest one, why are you here? Shouldn’t there be at least a 28 here too?”

21- “I’m probably busy by then! Perhaps touring the country with my rocker husband, taking pictures of his band along the way and writing our adventures.”

7- “Yeah, dream on. Or you're dead before 28.”

21- “God, you are so morbid! And mean! The ghost fascination stays 8 through 12, but we went back to being nice again. Why are you so bitter for just that one year?”

7- “Because I really hate school, duh. They wouldn’t let me in the special smart class. They get to play 'Zoombinis' and 'Where in Time is Carmen Sandiego?' all day!”

21- “That's why? Really? Hmmm, yeah, I was never cool, was I? Damn.”

18- “Psh, what are you talking about? I’m cool! And I’m not just saying it because I falsely think I am, like 14 does. Now if you excuse me, I’m going to go babysit 3 and 4, the only other ages we were totally awesome.”

14- “Ooh, I forgot to ask, does ‘Return of the King’ turn out well? I bet it’s amazing! OMG, so excited for that!”

21- “18! I’m cool! Take me with you!”

18- “You spent the first few hours of being 21 watching Wolverine and obsessing over the inaccuracies. I like X-Men too, but man, that is pretty lame. You’re like, 21 going on 50 now.”

21- “Dammit. She’s right.”

7- "Haha, you're stuck with us!"

14- “WHEE! Look at me! I’m a pirate sailing around the living room in my purple sparkly inflatable chair! YARRR! WHEE!”

Sunday, March 22, 2009

You are the King of the Divan

Good news, everyone! I actually went out and did stuff this week! Then again, at one point I also said, “Oh man, we played Dungeons & Dragons for so long that I missed 'Lost!'” Which is about the geekiest thing a person can say outside of discussing string theory. Here’s a quick rundown of this week’s top moments:

* Went to see an awesome local band called The Paper and the Plane. I actually found out about them through one of the music magazines Mom sent me in a care package. I told this to the band and we all agreed the irony of discovering a Brisbane band through a publication written in Ohio is much appreciated.

*I sat in the wrong class for an hour and was completely terrified the entire time because it was a complicated web design course and everyone was writing advanced HTML codes. All I know how to do in HTML is italicize and bold fonts. Sometimes I can add a photo or link. Why didn’t I just leave, you ask? Well, when I peeked in, I asked the professor, “Is this Digital Imaging?” because it was in the room we’re normally in, but a different teacher. He said it was and after ten minutes I figured this was the wrong class and he probably thought I asked him something else (for having a not overly difficult to understand accent, you’d be shocked how many times people have no idea what I’m saying). And you can’t just get up to leave in the middle of a lecture or they yell at you. It was horrible. Plus, I never found out where the class I was meant to be in moved to. :[

*None of you probably care about this, but The Horrors released a new single that’s completely different from their old style, yet still fantastic. It’s over eight minutes long and never lags once, that’s how good it is. I almost cried with joy when I heard it the first time (music geek alert!) and have probably listened to it twenty times since.

*In small groups for my Human Biology class, we had to do an exercise where we were given a list of symptoms and had to diagnose the 'patient.' The rest of my group, who are Forensic Science and Pre-Med students were convinced the ‘patient’ was just drunk. I knew right away he had a diabetic shock. Guess who was the correct one? I then convinced my group that I knew this because I’m an Anesthesiology major with a specialty in small mammals. Yes, I have outsmarted the future doctors and scientists of Australia. Twice! Bwahahaha. I really only knew it because I have a diabetic friend and watch 'House' religiously.

*My flatmate Madeline is obsessed with the comedian Tim Minchin and has tickets to see him every single night he’s here, so I went with her on Thursday. It was the first time I’d ever been to a comedy show and I loved it. Then again, it was a bit concert-like because Tim Minchin does mostly comedic songs, kind of like Flight of the Conchords, but one Australian guy with a piano instead of two Kiwis with guitars. Turns out, the friend Madeline was supposed to take Friday night canceled, so I went a second time. The other great part about this show was the venue, a reconverted powerhouse. Much silliness was had pre-show taking pictures with all the graffiti left over from when it was abandoned. After the shows, we got to meet Mr. Minchin and he’s lovely. He has a huge bit in his show about Americans and when I said hello to him he was all worried he’d offended me. I just laughed and said, “Well, I’m from Philadelphia, so I’m pretty much in agreement with you.” (His jokes were mainly about the Bible Belt and Manhattan)

*On the way to the second Tim Minchin show, we saw The Kiss Army! Well, it was only two guys dressed up as Kiss, so it was more like a Kiss Small Battlement. Still, it was pretty darn cool, they went all out with the costumes. People over here really like to dress up, it seems.

*This weekend I attended a small party for a friend’s birthday, which was actually on St Patrick's Day, but we couldn’t celebrate it then. So we wore green and pretended to be Irish a week after the fact, haha. It was good fun and like all the best parties, ended with us driving around wearing cardboard crowns from Hungry Jacks, blasting ‘Ca Plane Pour Moi’ while receiving many stares from passing cars. Yes, we started out Irish and ended with a Belgian punk/disco song. Yes, there is such a thing as punk/disco.

*If you haven’t seen it already, I posted my Ace Enders interview over at Popserious. Woo.

Also, thanks again for the happy stories, everyone. They were very effective. With the exception of the wrong class incident and a particularly gruesome lecture on skin diseases, I had a significantly more uplifting week. :]

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Hello Today

Poor Australia, we’ve been taking quite a beating over here. First the fires, then floods, an earthquake, and just recently there was an oil spill right off the coast of where I live. I wanted to help clean it up, but they weren’t letting any untrained volunteers in. They keep showing footage of dead turtles covered in slick washed up on the beach. The news over here has been depressing the past few weeks, so if any of you have any cute stories or a happy article about a puppy becoming friends with a duck or something like that, please leave them in the comments.

Despite not being able to watch TV without seeing bad news, I’ve had a great time so far this semester. I get along with everyone in my flat (the jerky note-leaver has gone, hooray!) and have especially become close friends with the other girls in only a short period of time. This year is looking considerably better than the last, everything’s looking up Milhouse! Like always, I have a very strange bunch of classes to further my already schizophrenic transcript:

*Romantic and Victorian Literature- We read awesome novels written by long dead authors.
*Ghosts and the Gothic- We read awesome novels written by long dead opium addicts.
*Human Biology- We study biology way more in-depth than high school. The teacher shows pictures of unspeakable things that make all the medical students around me go ‘oooh’ while I try not to throw up.
*Digital Imaging- We Photoshop. From 6-8 pm on freaking Macs in a freezing cold room. I try not to smash the computer.

Fridays are my free days, so I spend a few hours volunteering in the food co-op. Which is nice because I get paid in store credit so it’s the closest I have to a job for now. Will work for soy milk. While sitting behind the ancient cash register that mocks my basic math skills, I realized that yesterday was the two year anniversary of the infamous Spring Break ‘bar fight’ incident with The Horrors. This trip down memory lane was then burst when a Hare Krishna customer asked me to help him pull a splinter out of his thumb.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Let's Pretend That It Was Perfect

Before I tell my Soundwave tale, I would like to note that I'm not trying to be a smug name dropper. Granted, most of you who read this blog either don't know or don't care about the musicians I'll mention, but for those of you who do, I assure you I'm not trying to rub it in anyone's face. Yes, I got to meet some cool people, but my life is not glamorous. I spent five hours last night creating a character for Dungeons and Dragons because the guys I live with were short a player and begged me to join them. I have transcended my already very high level of geekiness.

Soundwave started with a photographer friend and I being told the media entrance was all the way down at the third gate. Walking down there, we noticed that a Gun and Ammunition Show was being held across the street and this worried us considerably. At Gate 3, we were told it was really Gate 1.2 we wanted, the very gate that directed us to this place. Frustrated, we trudged up the hill, past the angry looking gun nuts again, and politely explained our situation to the man at the door. With much difficulty, we figured out where we were supposed to go with only ten minutes to spare until the first sets were due to start. My friend was one of only three lucky photographers with permission to take pictures of Nine Inch Nails and we giddily shared a quick unprofessional 'OMG WE GET TO DO THIS AS OUR JOB EEEEEEEE!' moment. But then the woman with the list informed me I was not down for a media pass. I freaked out and tried calling Jenn Enders (Ace Enders' wife who had called me earlier to confirm my interview) but it went to voicemail. Ace was playing in a few minutes, so I had no choice but to shell out entirely too much money for a ticket. Yay Ramen for the next month.

I ran through the crowd of every punk, emo and goth in Queensland to Ace's stage where I managed to catch the majority of his set. Phew. My interview was to take place at 2 pm but I didn't know where I should meet them. I asked the security guard if he knew and he went to check, leaving me standing next to the stage as the crew set up for Jacks Mannequin. Then I realized that a girl in the front row was taking pictures of me. "Oh God," I thought, "Please don't let her think I'm somebody important just because I'm standing backstage." Nope, she was taking pictures of Andrew McMahon and the other members of Jacks Mannequin who were right next to me and I totally didn't realize it for five minutes. Figuring they'd know where Ace was, I asked their bassist if he'd seen him. He hadn't, then offered me some of the iced tea he was drinking. It was a sweltering day and I wasn't about to turn down a chance to make the joke that I'd swapped spit with the bassist of Jacks Mannequin, so I accepted. After taking a few huge gulps I realized it was iced tea of the Long Island variety. I'd basically just taken the equivalent of three shots of rum and vodka. At 1:30 pm. On a hot day. With an empty stomach. I knew that in about ten minutes I would be, erm, just a bit tipsy. Oh crap oh crap.

I tried calling Jenn again to see if maybe I could reschedule the time for my interview. Still her voicemail. Thus began my search for the Enders backstage at Soundwave where I technically wasn't authorized to be. The 'iced tea' kicked in somewhere right before asking the dreadlocked guy from Moneen. Who when he said he hadn't seen Ace, I responded with "Raaaah, f*** my life!" and a little kick to the air. Moneen guy about peed himself laughing at me. AWESOME. But the absolute best was when I saw Keith Buckley (the Every Time I Die singer, not the actor from James Bond).



Have you seen Ace?




Ace Enders. He used to be in The Early November.

Oh! That Ace. No, haven't, sorry. What band is he in now?

Um, Ace Enders. It's pretty much just him solo.

Hahahahaha. Hey, are you drunk?

Slightly. By accident.

Hahaha. ME TOO! On purpose though. Australia is awesome!

*High five*

We should have our own comedy routine. I wish I could've talked to him more, especially about the hilarious column he writes for Alternative Press, but he had to go. I would also like to point out that Keith has one of the strangest tattoos I've ever seen: Spock crying because he doesn't have a mustache.

Eventually I found Ace and Jenn, but they were all "Let's do this interview!" before I could ask them if we could move it to later. So I interviewed Ace Enders, the former lead singer of one of my favourite bands, in a less than desired state. Needless to say, it didn't go as planned and I slightly made a fool of myself. Maybe it wasn't all that bad, but I can't bring myself to listen to the recording just yet. I know I said 'magician' instead of 'musician' several times and fumbled with my recorder because it kept beeping at me. I also made a really really dumb pun that caused him to give me that 'No, please don't' look. Then we were cut short because Jacks Mannequin finally took the stage and were super loud. On the verge of tears from screwing my interview up, I stood with The Audition and watched Jacks Mannequin play. Emo times three! A choice observation from my notebook that I don't remember writing: "Lead singer of Audition has a huge mouth. Like, an Aerosmith sized gob. Whoa."

Not wanting to waste the fact that I was miraculously still backstage, I took the opportunity to wander and somehow got recruited by the catering crew for an hour. This was a lot more interesting than it seems because I got to see the lists of 'requirements' aka the food and drink bands demand be in their trailers/tents. I also got to deliver some of them. The smaller acts shared tents and just asked for some bottled water plus a deli platter or fruit & veggie tray. The guys from Horse the Band even picked their own food up, which was considerate of them. Bands higher up on the bill had a trailer to themselves and some unusual requests. I helped deliver Red Jumpsuit Apparatus their box of goodies and had to explain to them that in Australia, light beer means a beer that is lighter in colour and flavour, not low cal as Americans think of it. You heard it here first, folks, Red Jumpsuit Apparatus are a bit diva-ish. I am chock full of industry secrets.

After getting a 'Local Crew' wristband that would ensure I could get backstage again (which I unfortunately didn't get the chance to go back and use), I ventured back out to see Underoath. It ended up being more like hearing Underoath, because the crowd prevented me from actually seeing the band. I couldn't deal with that and headed towards another stage. On my way I ran into Craig Owens and chatted with him shortly then got a picture. I didn't want to bother him much, otherwise I could've talked to him all day. In person, he looks so much like Dominic Monaghan. Whom I also love. *sigh* There was a small crowd for Rival Schools, so I got a front row spot which I held through Hellogoodbye, Funeral For a Friend, and Chiodos. Standing in the same place for over four hours was well worth it, I've wanted to see Hellogoodbye for several years and Chiodos was undoubtedly the best set of the day. They even played the song I suggested to Craig (I won't say which, but if you know me you can probably guess). Usually being front row causes me ridiculous injury but this time it actually saved me because instead of pushing towards the front, people did a Wall of Death. Which is where the crowd splits at the middle then runs towards each other and start punching. Why people do this, I do not know. I just watch.

Saw a few more bands after that, nothing spectacular, then I watched NIN from very far away sitting on a bench with a friend. I was so exhausted I fell asleep during 'Head Like a Hole,' something you'd think would be physically impossible. My day still wasn't over, I was invited to the after party at Rosies. Granted, I was sitting down for most of that. It was okay, Jimmy Pop from Bloodhound Gang DJed and I was going to introduce myself as a fellow Philadelphian, but my friend said Jimmy licked his face when he said hello, so I decided against it. A few other musicians showed up, Keith Buckley was apparently in the VIP room for a bit and I'm pretty sure I saw one of the guys from Houston Calls hanging out with the ginger one from Forever the Sickest Kids. The latter is a really bad dancer, haha.

So there you go. Another patented 'How the Hell Does Danielle Always Manage to Get Into Those Sorts of Situations?!' story. Hope you enjoyed it. I'll eventually put up my interview with Ace, if I ever get up the nerve to transcribe it. :/

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

I'm a Troublemaker

First of all, I would like everyone to know I'm perfectly alright and the wildfires are nowhere near where I am, though I appreciate the concern. The fires are all the way down in Melbourne, which is about as far away from Brisbane as Florida is from Pennsylvania. There were actually some major floods here in Queensland, but I wasn't affected by them.

I'm back at Nathan, so no more 17-year-old central where I felt like 'Charles in Charge.' Now (so far) my flatmates are three geeky guys closer to my age who play World of Warcraft all the time. Meaning my life is now 'The Big Bang Theory.' Yes, I enjoy comparing everything to sitcoms. Unfortunately the move itself didn't go as planned and I nearly had a nervous breakdown in the bus station. See, I had to be fully checked out by 10 am on Valentines Day, but I couldn't move in to Nathan until noon on the 15th. My plan was to leave all my luggage in a flatmates room, check out, walk around the city until 5 pm (when the building office closes), then have a flatmate let me in and spend the night so I could move my things to Nathan in shifts the next day. I would've gotten away with it too if it weren't for those meddling kids! My one flatmate got incredibly drunk the night before and thanks to her stupid friend that's always at our flat for some reason, had the brilliant idea to go out at 1:30 am.

Nothing was stopping them and neither of them knew the city, meaning I was pretty much forced to go with them (damn you conscience!) or else they'd wake me up with a paniced phone call to come rescue them anyway. I told them I wasn't going anywhere you have to pay a cover because I'm poor and we'd only be there for about an hour anyway so what's the point. I knew this was going to be a bad day when my flatmate started making out with a stranger who looked like Nick from 'Freaks and Geeks' while waiting in line at McDonalds. Yup. They just looked over at each other and BAM then they were sucking face. Several boys worth of flirting later, we eventually ended up at the club she wanted to go to. The same awful place where T and I once ducked into to avoid the rain and had those super creepers hit on us (I forget if I actually told that story or not, I don't think I did because it had funny photos to go with it that T never ended up sending me. Long story short, the guy hitting on me said I looked like a cocaine user because I "have the big nose for it," which he actually meant as a compliment. I then look over to see the guy chatting up T doing the 'Stop Hitting Yourself!' thing to her. We got out of there as fast as we could.) "No," I firmly stated, "I hate this place, it's full of jerks and I have a very strict policy of avoiding places with stripper cages built into their walls." But I was outvoted by the brilliant future of tomorrow and spent the next hour miserable. My flatmate then decided we should try the gay bar across the street. I was relieved since I'd much rather be there, but then I discovered it was $10 to enter and my flatmate needed me to pay for her as well. We ended up staying about ten minutes and had to leave because 'it wasn't happening enough' and the friend was uncomfortable. So I essentially spent a dollar a minute to marvel at gay raver kids dancing the Melbourne Shuffle. To top it off, they decided we should go back to the first club again. Hiding my anger, I told them I'll be waiting outside instead.

At this point, it was about 3:15 am and I'm sitting outside on a bench by myself. This would be worrying if I did this in Philadelphia, but in Brisbane you're perfectly alright. I was tired, grumpy, and just knew my day was bound to get crappier. My face must have shown it because from beside me a voice whispered in my ear, "Why so serious?" I almost had a heart attack. Standing there was a guy dressed as The Joker for no discernable reason. I just stared at him and then a guy in a Batman costume jumps out, yelling "Leave that citizen alone!" They then began to slappy fight for a few seconds and ran off. My flatmate's friend came out several minutes later to find me still dumbfounded. I tried to tell her about the amazing thing she just missed but she thought it was more important to be snarky about my flatmate. "I don't care how many guys she's made out with tonight," I practically yelled, "I just saw The Joker and Batman fighting!" She leered at me, "It wasn't really them. They're not real." A random goth guy came up to us, "You don't get it. Obviously Batman isn't real, duh. Point is, it was AWESOME!" Apparently he had witnessed it too and we talked a few minutes, with him offering me a cigarette if I knew the smallest country in the world. Which I did (Vatican City), but I don't smoke so I told him to give it to the next person who asks him for one on behalf of me. The friends he was waiting for showed up and we said goodbye, which made my flatmate's friend happy because she thought he was 'a freak.' Yeah, all those guys trying to grab your butt in that skeezy club are normal because they wear Abercrombie & Fitch but the goth guy who has an innocent friendly conversation to pass the time is the one we have to watch out for.

Eventually my flatmate was ready to go and the cab ride home was entirely arguments between her and the friend. I tried to calm the tension by making a stupid joke which neither got made the cabbie laugh. "You don't get it?" he said, thankfully on my side, "It was a pun." NEITHER OF THEM KNEW WHAT A PUN IS. The cabbie and I tried explaining it, but to no avail. How did they pass fifth grade English? Once back at the flat, I knew I'd never get up at 9 am if I went to bed at 5 am, so I just stayed up reading. The first part of my plan was successful but I was too exhausted to go into the city, so I told all my flatmates I was going to nap on the couch and to warn me if building management were coming. The flatmate I sacrificed my sleep and $20 for ended up opening the door because "she forgot and their knocking was killing me, omg I'm soooo hungover!" And thus I was kicked out hastily and forgot several of my things. I was called a cab, which I had no cash to pay for and had to use my credit card (I hate doing that). The office told him to take me to a hostel so I could spend the night there. An okay idea, but dammit, why is it such a crime for me to stay one more night at my old flat? Renters rights! It was also not such a great idea considering the hostel was full. But it was across from the bus station at least. With much difficulty and cursing, I managed to get half of my things into the world's most high security storage locker ("Please enter your birthdate, then choose a colour, re-enter your birth date, then pick a four digit code") and struggled onto a bus to a friends house with the other half of my bags. We spent our Valentines Day night eating pizza, watching 'Mean Girls,' then dancing around to my new favourite music video.

So to all those people who complain about Valentines Day because they're single or hate how commercial a holiday it is, you can shut it. Valentines sucks because something completely ridiculous (good and bad) always seems to happen to me that day. Fortunately I ended up having a fun time later on, but any day where you're dragging wheelie luggage and screaming obsenties because you're temporarily homeless thanks to your selfish flatmate is not really a good one. Damn you, Valentines Day curse!

On the bright side, this weekend I'm off to the Soundwave Festival and interviewing one of my musical idols, Ace Enders. I'll try hard not to cry like a Beatles fan when I meet him. Needless to say, next entry should be amusing and in a significantly happier tone.