A white woman in a Jamaican hat is doing laps inside the restaurant like she’s being reunited with her own princess three year old self. She’s never felt this good each moment another idea too profound not to share, piling up on top of eachother, jamming – blabbering out incomprehensibly. The staff don’t seem to even notice they must be used to it at 6am in Northbridge. Why am I here? Drunk and binging on McDonalds! You know fatigue is dangerous! This guy in front of me in the line is all hale-beaten rambling to the kid behind the counter then calling out babe over his shoulder trying to calm her down. He’s much older. As if you didn’t know this would happen when you gave it to her. I just realized it’s the breakfast menu. I yell, “How am I supposed to fill my spiritual void with the FUCKING BREAKFAST MENU?” The kid looks puzzled, but the pimp hands me a gold-bracelet asking if it’s real and turns back around. What kind of street sores are now on my hand? At least I can still be trusted.
I’m texting Davo and gulping this fake food without washing my hands.
“GO HOME,” He writes
“I can’t control myself L”
“No” same as when he pulled up beside me in a squad car as a rookie. All the clubs had shut and I’m walking up and down the soggy street. “What the fuck are you doing?” He knew, impotent-sex-pan-handling, by now don’t even care if it’s a women or a man. “GO HOME dickhead,” he says laughing as the window goes up. “No point suffering if no-ONES WATCHING.”
I like his stiffness, dryness, blackness – tough love. Unsympathetic empathetic.
I’ve been waiting all month to see the Nerve Quakes at The Bird, listening to their vinyl clawing at me – uplifting and melancholic. RIDING DANGEROUSLY.
I DON’T CARE
I DON’T CARE
RIDING FAST DOWN
INTO T JUNCTION
I SKIDDED> THE CAR STOPPED
THE DOG LEADS WENT TIGHT
I SCREAMED FIRE ECSTASY
AND RODE ON
GETTING MY TEETH
OUT ZIGGING IN
THE COFFEE NOT BRILLIANT
SOMETHING WHITE CAME TOWARDS ME
I KEEP DUCKING THE POWERLINES
THE BEASTMAN DRAPES
NO LINES JUST A BLURR
GOING THROUGH MY GARBAGE
ELECTRIC FENCE, SEVERED KANGAROO HEAD.
HE TALKS TO INFANTS LIKE THEY’RE ADULTS
WHAT ARE YOU LAUGHING AT
HIDDEN UNDER SHEETS LIKE CINEMA
NEW COLDS NEW WHITES OF EYES
I CAN’T STOP SCRATCHING
I WAKE UP IN THE NIGHT
HIT A CAR 1000$
SET THE FIRE ALARM OFF $1000
NOW LANDLORD SELLING
ALL HAVE A NICE DAY
THE MIND CAN BREAK
I tried to get money out on the way but it kept refusing.
I knew I had something in there. Locked my bike up in front of the huge stylish line, couldn’t look at them; like a dog that’s ripped the washing down, some weren’t even showing their socks. Act cool act cool. I have a right to be here just like anyone else, plus I have a septum piercing now. My sponsor says I need to change my haunts because they trigger me to drink. I love it when she says, “you’re doing so well.” After an hour, they don’t have fucking eftpos on the door. I stomp down to the atm.
“Dear customer due to upgrades Load&Go will have limited access and card usage.”
I FELT LIKE CRYING
ON THE KERB
SITTING. AN UNUSUAL HEIGHT.
“Kiera!” Legs, skirts, blondes; “I’m coming with you.” Clomp clomp clomp.
HOPING DOOR GIRL
ON ME BROKE.
Some lawn mowing type bloke had signatures of all three singers from Iron Maiden tattooed on his forearm asking me about The Bird.
“It’s the coolest place in Perth for live music,” I said, “I can’t get in my bank is fucked.”
“You must be a real music lover, sitting out here listening anyway, at least you can still hear it. Do you want a beer?”
“It’s 20 bucks to get in mate.”
“Fuck it, I’m off around Australia in a coaster bus next week, c’mon’ I’ll shout ya.”
The door girl waved us in for nothing and I said; “I blame you for the long ride here.” At the bar they asked my friend what he’d like, they didn’t want him there. He said, “I’ll have some fresh multi coloured popcorn.” I loved how he didn’t say please I hadn’t grinned like that all week. He looked at me and said, “Skate-boarders don’t like non skate-boarders riding skate-boards.” We drank $10 pints of Sly-Fox and through the gap in the curtains I saw a 10 year old kid get in a car and drive away. No-body was looking so I didn’t bring it up. I wanted to watch the band but it was wrong and they finished shortly after anyway. His name was Gerald Townsend-Crisp and I told him his daughter was a witch and that I was in AA because I tell everyone everything, compulsive over sharing.
“And here I am buying you beer, why are you doing it, if it’s a problem?” He said.
“Because maybe it will be different this time.”
I went out back trying to get to the toilet and all these high pants were standing right in front of it in a freedom circle. They could see the trouble I was having trying to limbo underneath their arms but wouldn’t budge. “Excuse me,” said someone and I felt a hand on my beanie, saving it with my own and saying, “Some-one stole your car out front.” I thought surely I mustn’t use manners if I want to be cool. If you’re hopeless in business invest in your image.
You can’t even play The Nerve Quakes online, they aren’t there. You have to buy the record. It’s already, “Post Streaming.” This tale improves with age. You should see what I’ve written on Facebook. What if they stop liking me? I can see how this shit makes you stupid. IT’S NOT EVEN THAT GOOD,
NEITHER IS COFFEE
IT MELTS MY ICE.
LOOKS GREAT ON MY WALL
A GROWN MAN TAKING SELFIES
NO REPLYS FROM THOSE GIRLS
SERVES YOU RIGHT
THAT’S FUNNY I’M STARVING
AND I’M NOT EVEN
HUNGRY. IS THAT BECAUSE
WHEN I PUT STUFF IN,
IT PUSHES STUFF OUT?
LIKE A SORRY HUSBAND.
I rode to the moon because I was drunk and wanted to write. It’s the coolest café in Perth, moody with booths and granny furniture, if only you could still smoke in restaurants. The waitress looks like a neo-glam-punk-smack-head, it took me years to get the courage to go in there scared of all their hairstyles and discographies; but I’m a local now and they started remembering me since I got my septum pierced. Douglas was in there, just woken up out the back under a lampshade. I like sitting in the centre of the room for maximum exposure. The waitress came and served me kneeling down. Just a second ago two men had been fussing over her and kissing her hand and before that I overheard her say to a group, “I used to know them by the cigarettes they smoked.” I’ve already looked her up on Facebook. Just two years ago a boring long haired ginger with 10 likes on her profile compared to now with 150 likes and a shaved head. When I get rid of this scalp condition I’m dying my hair pink. I ordered beer and fries.
There was a laugh coming from another table, which I vaguely recognized. On her way back from the toilet she said hello and I mistook her for someone else, which worked in my favour anyway because she’s hot. She had a mustard fleece on and pristine jeans, the ones with factory frays in them that the try hards wear to be grungy. She joins me and starts the think and grow rich talk, asking what I do for money. I told her I was a private investigator, pretending not to care but monitoring her reaction closely. “I’m not very good,” I said which is a pattern I have of putting myself down to fill silences. We got on the topic of finally having no housemates and I said, “I don’t want someone around all the time, but I do get lonely.” “Oh well I’d just invite people around,” she said with the slightest flick of her hair. Luckily my food and drink arrived so I had something to distract me. “Now it’s your turn to tell me something,” I said. “You didn’t ask a leading question, try again.” I picked up some fries and said, “Look! Chutney!”
I knew Douglas would come to Pho’s 24hr when The Moon shut because he woke up at nine and is lonely like me. I do actually have friends but you don’t count the ones who love you. The good thing about Pho’s is they aren’t going to kick you out. They don’t give a shit what you do. Even that women who jumped in my car in Fremantle at a stop sign trying to kiss me with marshmallow and showed me her tits is allowed in there and she starts fights every time. It’s a real niche, here with the other’s who struggle. THE VINES,
FOR SOMETHING TO GRIP
NOT MOVING. People asleep with their heads in soup; the hum my record player makes even when the needle is lifted. The couple nodding in the corner, he’s fighting it but she’s sagging like a blood-hound. “I’m not falling asleep, I’m falling in love.” Oh, and THE STRIPPERS. They come in after their shifts across the road and I ask myself how I can tell they’re strippers? I compare them to coppers – like is it hard for cops when they finish work to just switch off SCANNING for criminals? Likewise I assume it’s hard for strippers to stop at some level trying to arouse everything they walk past. How can I get close to them? WIMP. I’m sitting here eating a whole carrot cake and Douglas is scrolling; the green light flickering on his grubby little wireless modem. You have no potency when you’re a sugar junky no drive; not even for sex. Biscuits are the only things that get me excited. So why do I want to get close to the strippers? Because their lives are secrets to me. Because I want to rescue the suffering and because I want to have sex with them.
“I can’t be an alcoholic Douglas!”
“Yeah? Why’s that?”
“Because I could be drinking right now and I’m not.”
“You’re not an alcoholic but you do have a sweet tooth.”
I went to his place after the moon shut once, a Homewest flat up on the Kings Park hill. You could see a bush fire raging from his balcony. All he had in there was a pile of instruments and a mattress. He told me how some lefty couch surfers stayed with him and gave him a bad review saying he had cockroaches and was suspicious of society. They also implied he was a loser for eating at Annalakshme everyday which is where I met him. He thinks I love Laura.
“You love Laura,” he said.
“I do not. I’m just intrigued because she has a shaved head. And because I love the moon and she works here. Plus I’m too old for her, she would be hard work anyway; too popular gets too much attention.”
He’s nodding his frizzy hairy head
“Yep, you love Laura.”
And that’s when I left him for McDonalds, deliberately spelt incorrectly. Exploiting people like me who have no control over themselves, I see that sign and for a moment the dread disappears from my chest. I SWAM HERE.
THE SKY TURNED
POINTING MY LEAVES
TOWARD THE SUN
ID TAKE MY SHIRT OFF
IF I DIDN’T HAVE DERMATITIS
I’M A WORM
ON THE FOOTPATH! That’s it! I just want someone to say no-one has it as hard as you, THERE THERE, don’t do it you don’t realise how much more important than everyone else you are.
Then another message from Davo.
“It has to end sometime.”
“You’re right. Thanks mate. I’m going home.”
4 Jan 2018
I was at Rifo’s with Lawrence and told him I had 19 of these journals. He said I should start screwing with them. Did I have the trick? Why did I have the attack of the holidays? I sat with mum for hours, we read Matthew and she cried three times. I told her I struggle with a love between God and art. She said art is in his image and not to surpress it. Then I saw Lawrence then Sam then picked up the velvet book and burst. I was supposed to go to bed but the ink kept gushing. It had been stuck all this time inside a jelly of fear. Afraid of ridicule for being soft and wobbly. But now it’s like the most amazing cordial. I just know this is what they mean by purpose. Bad energy stays in the throat but the chords are relaxing, my voice is breaking again. Things are really starting to change because I realise I can’t. Mum said I need to get checked out. That there’s a good therapist in Mt Lawley. The poison needs to come out, it’s tearing you apart. I said don’t worry about what Aunty Pat says. It’s my Facebook and I’ll write whatever I like. That was a poem for chrissakes. She said, “Maybe I should listen to it with music?” I sung Dadada. It really does sound like your going off the rails though. I said I haven’t been on the rails since the 60’s. At that party, on a big property. A girl said we may as well get married and save time. So I took her to my room, there was clean clothes allover the bed. I said I don’t bother putting them away there’s no point. She got in and I went into my high school garden for a leak which went for ages. When I got back to my room it was rearranged and she was crying. “He came in wild with language and pissed right there two times.” I said, “Right,” and went and cut up his toy engine with a hacksaw.
Trying to hitch out of Uxbridge nobody would stop. Frustration? Then remembering that I was free now, not when I got there. If I didn’t get a lift I could camp in the park and I’d still be free, even when it rains. I don’t have to worry about collecting glasses, what the housemates think of me or feeling guilty for choosing my laptop over my girlfriend. I changed spots.
A taxi driver picked me up. He drove taxis because he had no-one to answer to and could come and go as he pleased. I exclaimed. I’m petrified of not coming and going. I’d rather be beaten than employed. He said I’d made the right decision because London is a toilet. I told him about my girlfriend and how she has this special power where she actually forgives people. He said, I was better off without her and gave me five quid and his number.
I was at a complex intersection. Iron railings all around and tunnels underneath, nowhere to stand, peak hour traffic dark and raining in Birmingham. I considered breaking into the boarded up Ruxtin hall to sleep but tried a little longer. I was close to pitching my tent in the park when someone held up traffic calling out to me.
They say they can only take me a short way and laugh at everything I say. I seemed to start impersonating myself to entertain them, realising they probably weren’t used to picking up Australian hitch hikers and I had an edge because I was different. I could do no wrong, keep it simple and smile while they offer me jerky and cigarettes. You could say be myself whoever that is. I ended up at a Welsh hotel and they shouted me a room.
Kev reminded me of my dad. His voice whined like a Scouse’s and he used fast anecdotes that I didn’t understand. He valued wit in men and cackled like the intro in that Feel Good song in the Gorillaz. His teeth twisted and pointed straight out like a beaver.
He used to hitch hike 20 years ago and told a story of being picked up by a man in Dagenham. ‘He seemed alright to begin with and suggested I stay at his place. I soon realised he was a fookin gay and said nah I’ll be right. He kept insisting and luckily he pulled over to have a cup of tea, so I had one with him then went to the toilet and fooked off.” We all laughed.
I sat with Kev and his 2 sons at The Stanton Hotel in Chirk. They had about 3 pints each and for a moment I considered joining them. Kev chain smoked and repeatedly offered to buy me food and drink while getting money of his sons for the next round. All I had was £50 in the whole world but I still felt guilty for accepting the hotel.
I went upstairs to write, and Kev knocked on the door. “Aren’t you Australians meant to play guitar or something?” He kept shaking my hand and repeating himself, I thought he must be drunk.
He said goodnight and that his son would pick me up in the morning to take me to Manchester. “It’s been a pleasure,” I said. “I bet it fookin has!” he said nodding with a high brow.
I could hear the doors playing through the wall in his room and he called me 10 minutes later. “Do you have an alarm clock you drongo?”
Mitch picked me up out the front, I didn’t get a chance to look at him much but he had small brown eyes. It was a struggle to talk but I dug deep. He was kind and unsure. I don’t think his old man shouts him hotel rooms.
I got into a posh part of South Manchester and found myself ravaging a tray of McDonalds. I don’t look after myself anymore and I haven’t been meditating. I’m also having dreams about being Lou Reed.
I’m staying with someone I met in Mexico. He’s living at his uncles for nothing and gave me a top floor room overlooking a jungle where a fox lives.
I will over stay my welcome and think about it for years.
Flo is not happy but I’ve run out of sorrys.
July 07 2015
I was falling asleep on the train coming back from Victoria which seemed to humour two dudes sitting opposite. So I layed dog eye for a bit, slowly filling my lungs then screamed as loud as I could. Everybody on the train jumped and it frightened those two so much that a part of them may never recover.
Before that I was seeing Flo off the couch terminal and she bought me a flapjack. I had been looking at her in awe, wondering if she was real. How did she know I love flapjacks? Seeing as I’d known real happiness I figured it would be the last time I’d see her before she died in a bus crash.
She was hopping, so it didn’t feel right to look deep in her eyes but I made her promise she wouldn’t die. And seriously why we won’t be together forever? Unless the bus crashes or I die of strangeness because I’m way older and live a double life around snack stands.
I came home and ate a litre of cheap ice cream which I had to hide from my housemates who hate Nestle. It was so bland I had to put 3 bananas in it and heaps of Flo’s honey which I’ve been banned from touching. Then I ate the chocolate which I found hidden at the very back of the cupboard from me.
I sat ashamed on my laptop and played with the cat as Finn clanged around with a mop and bucket on her morning off. Then Jack woke up full of phlegm and left a puddle of tea on the clean floor.
I went into his room while he was away in Barcelona. It was a shocking mess, a bulging black bin liner being circled by winged insects. Finn and Flo had been in there and cleaned it for him, which was most kind considering he’s a brat and refuses to wash his own dishes. While they were in there Finn called out to me to come look. The room looked fantastic and they’d written him a poem. Finn guided my attention over towards the shelf where standing upright stood both of Jack’s rubber dildo’s. With a cheeky smirk she pointed closer to the smaller one which seemed to bear some remains with hair stuck in it.
Jack and I weren’t talking. He’s a pig and I’m not paying rent. When I went into his room to retrieve my shorts, I found myself sympathetic and intrigued. This was his first time living away from home and he’d obviously had no domestic responsibilities before.
For a gay kid growing up in Essex I assume the only way to survive was to become efficient at devaluing criticism. Problem is he applies it to things he doesn’t understand or hold importance to. He got smacked out the another night by some guy in a Peckham fast fued and you have to give it to him old Jasper, he’s good at getting under your skin. They did call him chubby however.
I saw almost our entire collection of bath towels on the floor, empty booze cans, all sorts of grime and debri, evidence of independant sexual activity, scattered change, his drawings on the wall – one which looked a fine piece of draftsmanship done without lifting the pencil from the page.
He complains about being the only single person in a house of eight and at least was, spending a lot of time on grinder. Since I’ve known him, his increasing sexual exploration has entertained my own curiosity, his frankness around homosexuality is refreshing since it’s not typical of my upbringing.
He came into our room the other night and woke us up crying and saying he didn’t want to drink anymore, then denied it the next morning.
There’s no denying the allure of a self destructive person, but it’s a lot less irritating from a distance and when you don’t have to wash his frypan just to cook.
27 March 2015
I almost walked out of work before even starting, waiting like a moron for my boss to open his door so I could ask why I hadn’t been paid. I called him two days ago and he said he’d get back to me.
In his office he said he would call the pay people on Monday and let me know. He asked me if I was struggling and without hesitation I told him I was. He said he’d lend me £100 out of his own pocket and that I could pay him back later. Until that moment I was indifferent towards him but this changed things. We shared a hint of a smile and I asked where he’d like me to work figuring I’d see him later about the loan.
I went out to the busy beer garden and got on clearing tables of glasses and plates, scanning any horizontal surface for lost valuables. I can’t look at the patrons because my hair sucks and I don’t know what to say when they talk to me.
Chris is behind the bar. He’s not worried about his hair, neither am I really. He always smiles and doesn’t get weird. His girlfriend is best with the bosses girlfriend. We talk about Italian shirts and I squirrel wedges from customers plates. I’m doing my best believe me. I realised a drinker had been watching me wedge and a jolt went right up me as I continued stacking glasses and refusing to look up.
I found a packet of unfinished cigarettes and as Charlie walked past with two towers of glasses I tucked them into his top pocket your the man!
There was a brown paper bag under one of the tables and I took it. There was a half eaten steak and a pair of orange Ray Bans.
A rugged looking new employee brought some glasses up as I was stacking the dishwasher and asked if I was Australian. He didn’t seem to notice I was weird and we cleaned up the beer garden together in the dark singing Tomorrow by Silver Chair. I found a gold pound in the stone floor crack marvelling at it in my fingers. I added it to the other 85p I’d already found and shifted the ray bans from my bulging jeans pocket into my shirt. If anyone came asking for them I’d give them back but they’d only be looted from lost property and sold for 20 quid.
I’m aware my morals are sliding but being poor makes it ok. If it weren’t for cashing someones’s oyster card I found in the dunny I wouldn’t have been able to get to work today or buy a chocolate orange from Poundland.
I was relieved about that loan though and could finally buy my girlfriend and I some food. But it felt like cheating because I wanted to be in this position out there broke in London. Making it up minute by minute not knowing later, in the jacket alone in the grey, pecking at the path, not knowing about the nits. Carry on only luggage euphoria and no alzheimers.
At the end of shift I realised the boss had gone home early without a loan and the Ray Ban’s had fallen out of my pocket so any relief would have to wait til tomorrow.
when i get angry at them i cant stand it anymore and
I was trying to change my head
then always folding my legs and only seeing some blackness
i said it is the nothing
it was hurting and sweat was coming
i keep to work
i am always trying to perfection my head
in there some secrets cant hide
then i was dirty and i think nobody can friends with me
i was in my head at the bridge and so far down is the water
when im sitting on the steps jack said if i was ok
he told me did i ever kiss a man
i wasn’t but i had before done some things
then my girlfriend heard it and asking that she doesnt know
i am telling her and she was always my girlfriend and said dont ever changing.
i am asking the questions everytime what is the point for all this things in a book
everytime the pictures and blog and in and out some breathing
finn said not always changing yourself
i was inside dont know who am i
then i said hi im chris bell!
you cant even answer your own question
There is no answer for always breathing
You will all the time ask it and learn dont to ask it at the same time
I think that was called a paradox
you were always tricking the mind so it cant see whats your plan
always saying what is the point!
then i said nobody knows it
dont always looking for some instructions from somebody different
then i drink the coffee but not some beer why?
my head wants to looking out the clear window
not if it has a shit inside
so how to stop saying why?
you can’t and you keep in and out some breathing
i think it was accepted
all the time life was entertainment
5 Nov 2015
I became fascinated with Perth graffiti in the early 90’s after seeing “PIST – GAS” tagged in the alleyway next to my house in Beechboro. I was 11. Writers usually operated within crews and from my observations “GAS” appeared to be the most prestigious one.
Me and my mates started our own shitty crews and tags trying to recreate that underground rebellious mystique ourselves.
I continued destroying endless stacks of paper practicing my tags accompanied by intermittent vandalisation from then on.
In 97 I left Lockridge High to work in Forest Chase News. Didn’t work out and I returned to a mature age school called Cyril Jackson. It seemed like people were only there for the social atmosphere including me who hung around on the oval doing dexies and smoking.
I noticed a guy I’d done swimming lessons with at those old Morley pools when we were young. He had a little brother too. I’d also seen him at Swan Recreation while playing Basketball. He came up. Way too confident and had graffiti on his Nike Air Force.
He came up at school one day and said I’d tagged on his piece at the bustop outside the BP in Swan View. He was submissive probably reasoning anyone willing to challenge his clout deserved caution. But I was just stupid. I didn’t even know there was a piece there, maybe just some kindergarten project.
We started hanging out at CJ. He was doing art and would show me his drawings. He was older and knew how to walk, people talked about him and everyone knew when he arrived. He wore jag jeans and Timberland shirts, listened to Wu Tang and Ultramagnetic MC’s. He showed me this tune on his walkman called the Poo Poo Wrecka.
After school one day at the train station he got out his marker and tagged a panel, he wrote TUMBLER – GAS followed by TWERP. He looked over at me and said “I bet you think your hardcore now coz I wrote you up.”
I soon realised that Tumbler was using Heroin. I could tell when he was on it because his face was pale and vacant, his eyes were red and his heart was generous. His gold rings would disappear some days and he would jovially anguish over injecting them into his arm. He’d winge about his pimples and ask me to help him get off drugs, get his life together and treat his girlfriend right. He’d say that he was pathetic for hanging around people much younger than him.
He stayed with me for a bit and drew TWERP in an amazing piece and told .me not to bite his style. I glued it to my file.
Through a new mysterious blue eyed friend and other people at school, my circle extended among other vandals, thieves and like minded youths. I got invited into JM by LASH even though my writing sucked.
Funnily enough besides crime, most of the writers were generous and morally upstanding among their friends, welcoming new people and sharing what ever they had, even tipping taxi drivers $50. That’s what it was all about, making friends and getting known.
I grew up excited by what I could get for free, smashing things and going where I wasn’t allowed so breaking the law was familiar but some of these guys had been in jail and had no fixed address. They were street; their acquisitions could be methodical which took my dishonesty to a new level.
One of the big news stations did a prime time report about Graffiti and interviewed Torcher, Virus and Brat while blurring their faces. “You see me on the news Twerp?” Said Torcher on the train one day. I had taped it.
One day in the Murray St Mall we were in a watch shop browsing innocently then the next thing they’ve vanished and the cabinet door is wide open.
We walked passed an older Aboriginal guy soon after who reprimanded VIRUS for bombing up Mirrabooka I believe. Virus started asking how so and so was but got shut down, “Don’t try make a conversation with me VIRUS just walk away.”
We went into Macdonalds across the road from Midland Gate Shopping centre. There was a glass donation box half full of money fastened to the counter and everyone was too scared to take it so I walked up and cut the wire with my snips and walked out the door. A customer said “that’s not yours,” and I laughed at him then disappeared over an adjacent fence.
We went straight to the bottle shop and I bought Strongbows for everyone. TWERP was officially a mad cunt.
My family went away for a weekend so I invited people round to get drunk. Early in the afternoon the phone rang and my mate Tom picked it up and started teasing the caller.
An hour later Tumbler stormed through my front door and went for Tom, “Was that you on the phone?” His fist cracked Tom’s mouth like a ball to mit.
I started screaming and telling him to get the fuck out, he grabbed me and forced me down the hallway in a bear hug. I was drunk and crying, summoning all my rage to break free as he overpowered me. He was crying too, “I love you man,” he said sedating me, “I respect you more than anyone, you stand up for yourself.” He was just too strong, he did weights and boxing and had too much influence over me, I gave up. I’d found my role model.
We all got pissed and Tom forgave him, holding frozen peas to his pummeled mouth.
We had a bonfire out the back and some of my friends from Lockridge came round. Tumbler had picked up his mate CINSE from jail after being released that day. They were sitting by the fire and his mate was leaning right over to one side with eyes half closed, mumbling and shaking hands with newcomers like he was mentally impaired.
My mates from Lockridge came round and screwed their noses up at my choice of company; beer and fighting was alright with them, but not drugs.
I followed Tumbler into the bathroom.
“Have you used man?”
“No,” he said fixing his hair in the mirror with red eyes and spotty cheeks.
“I fucken haven’t,” He said pushing passed me with the tonal warning not to interfere.
Some uninvited dude bought police to my house so 2 of us smashed him while Tumbler disappeared with a girl.
Then I slept with Tom’s girlfriend.
As the sun rose over Swan View I sat on above the train tracks on the kerb with Tumbler comforting him as he cried about cheating on his girlfriend and being out of control. Something had happened to him growing up and he was angry about it.
I was spending a lot of time with blue eyes by now. She had been in my health class at school, sitting directly across the room with short bleached hair, striking eyes and vintage fur coats. I couldn’t stop looking at her and one day she caught me, I looked away immediately returning shortly later to a wonderful gleam of white teeth and direct eye contact. I thought she was from another planet.
She moved into a house on Bushby St in Midland with 2 friends Mel and Tom’s ex Kelly. I’d hang out with these 3 chicks and everyone was curious because blue eyes was popular and I had fast become her best friend.
The house started getting very busy with all sorts of people. One day I was giving someone a haircut out the back and a few of us jumped the fence. I noticed a high open bathroom window and seeing as none of them were game I seized the opportunity to get some publicity.
All I could find was a bottle of grog but they tore the place apart finding cheap jewelly in places I didn’t know were there. “She must be a hooker, said one and I went into the lounge and saw kids toys allover the floor.
One morning very early Tumbler came around with a pocket full of jewellery and 3 or 4 watches on his arm. “I just broke into 3 houses,” he chortled and continued his brash repertoire. He’d started ignoring me by now.
A few weeks later we were playing pool in Maylands and Tumbler showed up to sell us gear. He had gold rings allover his fingers and a roll of cash. I didn’t bother saying anything. I found it strange that they trusted him. I’d seen him cut dexies with glucodin and sell it as speed to a guy everyone knew who shot it up in the Midland train station toilets and said nothing. Another guy point blank told him he ripped him off but Tumbler mocked him saying “Thats because you fucking smoked it.” But money changed hands and we ended up back at Busby street and I shared a needle with Virus. I was not surprised when it did nothing but not another word was said because Tumbler was the supervisor. He was BAD, ABC, GAS! And if he liked you, it was like a drug.
He once told me that he used to look up to the bigger taggers until he met them and realised they were nothing and that he could push them around. Maybe that’s what he wanted from me, to stand up for myself and be someone he could look up to.
Kelly had moved in with Blue Eyes after falling out with her parents and she took a few of us to their house to get food. Noone was there so she broke in and seeing as she didn’t like them we figured it was kosher to rob the place while she was in the kitchen. One of them found a bit of cash and split it between us. It was about $400.
A few days later police were at my door and mum was asking the neighbours to baby sit the kids while she ducked into a paddy van with me.
I was the only one to get caught because she knew where I lived. The police did the old, “we promise not to charge you if you tell us who the others are,” so I did. I started getting phone calls from people saying they just got out of jail and were going to break into my house and mess up my family. So mum took everything she had out of the bank and bought me a ticket to live with my Grandad in Sydney.
I constantly listened to a hiphop tape tumbler made.
8 years later I was back in Perth and I saw him coming down the stairs from the Look Out in Scarborough. He was with two girls smirking and with that same self assurance called out TWERP! I ignored him.
Not that long ago I heard he was dead.
This was taken at the bus stop outside Stratton Shops after walking in the rain from West Swan Caravan Park where Blue Eyes was staying after being kicked out of home for getting her nipple pierced.
25 Oct 2013
Munich Central Train Station Day 4.
Still here – DIRTY RAT.
Slept on Balcony near Burger King. By morning 6 others were lined up along side me. Comfort in numbers.
1st guy Martin (German) came at 1220. We discussed the cancers of money, he bought me a big water, kept saying “fuck off the system!” And told me I was a cool man. I find broken english fucking hilarious. “You are laughing!” He’d say.
2nd guy came at 1am after watching us from the otherside. He’s Japanese and has a moustache. “Are you sleeping here?”
He sets up 2 metres away, bike locks his pack to the table and jumps in his sleeper.
2am I hear foot steps as I doze. It’s security guards looking at my socks over the rail that I washed in a bathroom yesterday. They peer over the 3 of us as I wait for them to lose it. They swap a genial glance and walk away.
At 4am I wake up and there is 4 others lined up on my left side, they’re from Croatia. They leave, so does Martin.
530am this bloated, orange dyed, apish beast woman starts thrashing the cafe tables around losing it in German about the japs bag locked to the table. He must have gone to the toilet.
“It’s not mine you monkey woman! Does it look like mine? I don’t speak monkey alright?”
She scorns me with red bulls eyes like I’m the matador.
I’ve been painfully and confusingly undecided about my next direction for 3 days. Life is never easy for the fragmented.
I’ve been eating small cheese and tomato baguettes for £2.20, showering in the station wash and go room for £7 a pop and reading, writing and blogging in Starbucks. They play great music and are very friendly.
07 Oct 2013
First night in France – dinner with strangers, military haircut nightclubs, sleep in a Macdonalds playground.
I met Virgil on the Ferry to Calais.
He invited me for dinner with his family
Then we went here
Virgil went home and I slept in here
Employees started arriving at 6am so I slid out the slide like a reptile and moved under a motorway bridge until 9.44
I Might go to Paris.
4 Oct 2013
London doesn’t look the same in the darkness of 3am, there’s no people anywhere and all the restaurants along the South Bank have their outdoor tables and chairs neatly stacked and chained to the wall.
I’m wearing everything in my backpack and I’m still cold, laying here on the Victoria Embankment on part of the Thames River Wall. It’s overlooking the downward ramp entrance to RNLT Tower Life Boat Station which is a stones throw north from Waterloo Bridge. I’m on a granite block elevated to about head height of the passing pedestrians, it’s dark enough for them not to notice me but anyone with street eyes would spot me.
There’s rats running around and I can’t really sleep because the slab is cold and I’m freightened of rolling over the edge. Surreal moment : Am I actually doing this? It’s a section of time when you are sort of detached from the reality of your geographic location, so far away from home in a situation your mother would never have wanted. I understand why people talk to themselves, it’s like your the centre of the universe, everybody else is frozen and your walking around looking at whatever you like in Murgatroyd’s Garden.
I moved heading north toward Blackfriars Bridge and saw a little round man walking toward me with a shopping bag. Anyone walking around this early is a nutter so I held a reserve of tense curiousity.
I could smell his cologne and he invited me to sit down. There was not much space on the part of the bench he suggested and he did not move over despite the contact of our legs. He was from Romania and I didn’t feel like talking but he said he was starting a company and had some big plans. He asked for my email address which I gave him, then he left.
I crossed the bridge after looking for a better spot by walking into the tiled subway entrance to Blackfriars London. It was drenched in tuscan light not a sound at all, there were some people under blankets just outside.
On the South Bank on the otherside of the river almost directly opposite my previous spot I found Bernie Spain Gardens. I was so tired, I hadn’t slept for 48 hours since hitching from Glasgow.
There’s a bunch of scattered green benches there, right up the back of the small park I can see a white face supine on a bench facing me asleep in an eskimo rimmed sleeping bag. About 30 metres away to my right a man is sitting on another bench slumped with a big hood over his head shadowed from the garden lights by trees. He has no blankets.
I lie down and pull my sleeping bag over me which is only half effective now since washing it in a machine (it’s duck feathers.)
I look at the back of my eyelids, wondering if those sounds I hear are people walking up behind me with a bat about to bludgeon me for assaulting this public space with my seemingly worthless presence.
I hear the sound of jogging feet. I peak out of my sleeping bag and the black has turned to pale colour as people run past with their headphones on and men in suits walk to work not even looking at me. Those other two guys have gone.
Bernie Spain Gardens
RNLT Tower Life Boat Station
The pictures throughout the post were developed off my film camera today for..:)
I read excerpts from a book in Huautla called Brilliant Perfect Stillness and decided that I was no longer an individual but merely an extension of natures connected system, like we are all one, leaves on a tree. With that, I decided all this writing and facebooking I was doing was feeding an ego I`ve been desperately trying to lose, so I quit. For 6 days. I simply can`t walk away right now from the love I get from people in all this, I love doing it, It comes dribbling out of my mouth when I`m sitting still, I just want to talk about it.
I also read about “The man who quit Money” and “The Peace pilgrim” who live and lived without money and decided that losing my bankcard was a sign that I could do it too.
I left Huautla, De Jimenez where my mate JOB, THE GREATEST had been sleeping me and feeding me at his families place, “It`s no problem, don`t worry about it” he kept saying, and he meant it, absolutely without any requirement of return, no black book. A living essence of giving.
I walked up the mountain towards TUXTEPEC, with amazing forest mountain vistas, I was bitten on the back of the leg by a crazed fucking dog and swore that I would carry a stick from then on and bash the jesus out of anything that came near me again.
This mungrel on the far left with it’s tail curled up ran off in accomplishment straight after biting me.
I slept in the concrete shell of a house on such a beautiful mountain. I crapped outside then had the owners show up while I was in the doorless front room looking out onto the road. I heard the car pullup and stopped breathing for 2 minutes until they discovered me. They froze with stunned looks on their faces which turned to smiles, “No problem” they said. They didn`t see the present I left outside for them though. Hahahah I actually did it on a flat piece of wood then flung it over the side of the mountain. hahahah.
When I was sleeping a dog had sniffed me out and was barking demonically out the front in the darkness, I was so fucking sick of the dogs man, so sick. It didn’t come in but I had to barricade the entry and sit up hoping it would come and peel my face off.
The next morning before daylight a mexicano picked me up and took me to Tuxtepec after shouting me super dry vegetarian quesaldias which constipated me for 5 days. Me and tortillas are finished.
I had no money and walked into town and sold my brand new Iphone 4 (which I got in New York 1 month ago) to some dudes for 1150 Pesos which is a FAMILY FISH AND CHIPS in Australia. I bata`d for a nights accomodation at their friend`s house Pablos, who made me food. I had a cold shower, washed my clothes and slept on his concrete floor and was terrorised by biting winged gnats all night which my blood is still poisoned from and has left my lower legs furiously itchy. Mexicans seem to live in harmony with them, they have no flyscreens on their houses and sit well into the night with all their windows and doors open and don`t seem to be bitten by them.
Below is a photo of Pablito.
Got a bus to Veracruz which is a shit hole. Was helped by some young legend called XON find my way to the highway where I started hitchiking to the Guatamalan border to fly to Beunos Aires because it was 600$ cheaper than Veracruz. The sticky, lollipop tropical jungle heat made me crazy OH MY GOD thats right. Something happened that I will NEVER forget.
While trying to get a ride, this chocolate 20 something kid comes cycling one of those jalopy things sweating incredulously, he greeted me and it would appear he had cerebral palsy, he was offering me a lift but I told him I had no money and I was going miles away anyway. He kept saying something to me which I couldn’t understand and staring right into my eyes. He was frowning and I started freaking and became defensive. “No deniro gway, Me noh Deniro amigo….AMIGO, ME NOH DENIRO, COMPRENDEZ??” (I have no money) I was getting pissed off. I looked away anticipating a possible strike from him noting the veins in his forehead and gritting teeth. I was confident I could defend myself and prepared. He reaches into his back pocket and pulls out a roll of bills and hands me a 50, he was saying “How much do you need.” I almost fucking cried. I hugged his sweaty shirt with tears in my eyes and declined. He peddled away in the heat haze.
What else am i wrong about?
This is obviously going to be a long post. Need a toilet break? You having fun? hahahahah. Ok.
Hitchiking to the border in the bullshit heat, a bunch of motor transmission workers take me in and fill my water bottle and feed me bloody quesaldias. I wasn`t going to knock them back, I was hungry and the dudes were awesome.
I got about 5 rides south fairly easily. On one horizon I saw a group of women with a kid trying to hitch. I could have easily stuck my thumb up from where I was and rode sweet, I was miles away but I knew this was the moment to do the right thing. I walked passed them and said “Beunos Suartes” (good Luck), they were picked up by a truck soon after.
Later on after many lifts About 2pm I was dropped off miles up the road from where I had asked, the dude just flew by the road I wanted even though I had shown him a map and was telling him to pull over. I just sat and wondered what was in store for me now. “Tranquilo” he said. (relax)
I got out and stepped on my brand new raybans (The John LENNONS). I walked to a toll booth, it was searing and swarming with insects. Their was a huge army presence there including barracks and a security check. They looked through my stuff and didn`t notice that I was actually there illegally without a tourist visa.
I stuck my thumb out and NOONE would stop, so I walked for 5 hours. I got a short ride with a family who were taking the matriach to the doctor. The father told me how hard it was to feed his kids here. Oh mate I didn`t doubt it, I wanted to get the hell out of there already, it was terribly muggy, swampy and jungly, with little scattered shacks in fields, donkey shit, wild dogs and shrouded in pessimism. (Maybe just mine).
I started to lose my mind about 7pm when the sun went down. Smashing the grass with my stick, singing –
“Everytime, I turnaround,
you break my heart,
I`ll keep walking,
won`t turn around no more.”
I`ve never been picked up by a truck, ever. Tthey don`t ever give a shit or even wave. It`s company policy not to pick up hitchers everywhere. Sometimes I signal them, sometimes I don`t, but now everytime I signal them they break me and to stop it hurting I decide I`m not going to signal them anymore.
There is nowhere to sleep, the mosquitoes are thick and flock to my white skin, either side of the road is dense tropical growth and swamp, I fucking hate this, why am I doing it! Please No! PLEASE I keep saying. I lay down on the side of the road and realise I`m going to have to power up and commit to walking allnight with my stick. I know it`s dangerous around here because they told me it was, “Hentai Mala`s” they said. Hentais is people and Mala means bad.
I was stretching my knees and could see a huge truck coming towards me in the sunless eve, at the last minute I threw my thumb up quickly in a half effort thinking “you never know”. For a split second I saw the drivers eyes look at me as he zoomed past. That`s it I said Youve got to shut them out to get through this, you can`t afford to get weak. I kept walking and That motherfucker stopped.
100 metres up THE ROAD! HE stopped! I could NOT BELIEVE IT!
I ran like hell towards his truck watching the red tail lights turn on and off expecting him to drive away any second, but he didn`t. I threw my stick in the weeds and jumped up to his window. “Guatamala” I said. He motioned me to jump in, he was going to Comitan which was apx 300 km’s from the Mexican Guatamalan border.
He started driving, and pointed into the back cabin where a little set of brown legs lay in the dark, his 5 year old son is riding with him.
I’m high up in that bouncing passenger seat like a king man, I`ve never been in a truck before and I can`t believe he has picked me up, I cannot fucking believe it! I can`t stop smiling, surely I must be doing something right in life to be rewarded like this. I rejoiced punching a clenched fist into my hand saying YES!!! and gritting my teeth. He looked at me and said “NO!” shaking his head in alarm. I explained to him, “Me Felis, TU, aventon.” (I`m so happy you gave me this ride.) He realised what I was saying and slapped my open palm with the most celebratous low five I`ve ever experienced.
We drove allnight, He was so enthusiastic, he would hold out both his hands pressing downwards, adjusting his position in his seat, saying Cmon please, OK wait, wait, as he quietened me and prepared to explain something profound which I couldn`t understand at all. He smiled the whole time, he told me “Me gusta” and something to the device of he was fucking happy I was in his truck. He told me in his 15 years he never picks up hitchikers but saw me walking down the road and saw “Hentai” and decided to pick me up. This is a special day man, I will never forget it.
His son Santiago wakes up and is very shy, he won`t look at me or talk to his dad. I have a feeling he is really upset because I`m sitting in his seat, there’s nowhere for him. I suggested he was timid to his father and his father agreed. Later on Santiago started crying and I apologised to his father who reassured me it was ok.
We made a make do seat in between both of us behind the gear stick. Little Santiago would not shut his mouth for the rest of the night, talking talking talking with a sweet little 5 year olds voice, I adored him. We broke for CAFE about 2am and I payed for the bill, I wanted him to know that although I had little money I didn`t give a shit and that I was so grateful of him.
We got to Comitan about 4 am and he invited me to sleep across the front seats in his truck while he and “Chago or Chagito” slept in the back. I smiled as I drifted off to sleep, this is why that dude dropped me off miles away from where I’d asked. Thankyou from the bottom of my heart.
The next morning I hung with Chagito while Papa lined the truck up to deliver his goods at the supermarket. I took a photo of them then bailed on a series of sweaty buses to the Guatamalan border. The only reason I came down here with my mexican authorityless UNSTAMPED Passport was because I went to immigration in mexico city and they said it would be cool when I got to the border. Guatamala thought otherwise and wouldn`t stamp my shit. My blood boiled because I knew they wouldn`t let me on a plane out of the country and I would have to fucking go all the way back to Tijuana to leave and I had NO fucking money. Choclate people were in my face trying to sell me stuff, there was street stalls everywhere, flies, bugs, beggars, cripples, rotting fruit and stinking vultures everywhere and I was stuck. I hated everything and everyone and wanted to go home so I went to an internet cafe and made a pleading facebook post to my friends.
I was planning to enter Guatamala anyway and get to the airport.
I was inundated with offers and advice, and everyone of them helped me get through so thankyou EVERYONE.
In the end My mate TREMAYNE EAST wired me money and got my ass the hell out of there and it wasn`t without much stress.
I just got a 17 hour freezing bus ride back to Mexico City without a jumper, NEVER AGAIN. I went straight to the airport and was ABLE to sort out this visa mess for 295pesos. It didn`t seem like a big deal at all. But everything for a reason, RIGHT?
I`m flying to New York tomorrow thanks to my mate DILLON SOCMAS buying air tickets for me. I’m going somwhere else the day after AND IM NOT TELLING YOU YET WHERE IT IS HAHAHAHAH. It`s not Beunos Aires this time because the tickets are 1700$. Sorry Paula.
If my new york FAM wanna get with ME I`ll be there from Monday morning 1201am til 5pm that night.
It will all work out in the end, you know it, we both know (right Bassett?)
Unedited, unabridged, (what does that mean anyway?) un giving a fuck.
This is part 2 of The Pilgrimage to Champigñón, you can read part 1 here.
Highway 135 Mexico,
I left the construction site before the sun rose. I was pissed off that my sleeping bag didn’t protect me from the condensation.
On the side of the road I was preoccupied looking to the sky in random muse when a man in a rusty van stopped.
I couldn’t understand him at all but after telling him I was going to Oaxaca he kept saying “Serca, serca!” I tremored through my dictionary looking for the word the way it sounded. It means nearby. He was overjoyed when I finally understood him and we sat in a comfortable silence for the next 150km’s.
The next driver was equally as pleasant, wearing a refreshing menthol green shirt with a white vertical striped pattern. It was unbuttoned to the bottom of his chest with a shark tooth pennant resting against his sternum. He smiled alot.
A kind young priest also picked me up, I kept falling asleep and leaning on him, I laughed and he wasn’t bothered.
I walked along the highway for a couple of hours by choice. I’m wearing a psychedlic pair of purple boardshorts which finish an inch before my knee cap. My socks are burgundy, pulled up just beneath the peak of my calf muscle, their elasticity is excellent holding them in place. My shoes are a black pair of vans. I have a baggy teal coloured V neck tshirt on, and a golden yellow and blue flannelette long sleeve shirt over the top to shield my arms from the sun. My hat is a floppy wide brim Australian bush hat with a large flap on the back to cover the neck, it’s a horse skin colour and I call it the frill neck lizard. I’m wearing a pair of Ray Bans which I call the John Lennons.
On the right side of the road I notice a short brown lady tending to something atop a ridge, I was ambivalent about approaching her but pushed myself. On the ridge sits a view of the hills, foreground with red ploughed earth and sparse dwellings. The old women has ground yellow teeth and a white wide brimmed hat on. Behind a fence are 3 donkeys, two bulls, two smouldering fires and a bamboo straw hut. “Amigo!!” Says a little brown man. I tell him “Yo caminando, pedeer aventon, Oaxaca,” (I walk, hitch hike, Oaxaca.)
The sun is going down and he offers me a place to sleep in his straw hut where he keeps hay for his animals, “El Rancho!” he calls it. He points down the hill to a crater surrounded by shrub, “Water,” he tells me in spanish.
The hut is small and to the roof high with hay besides a narrow walkway down oneside, he throws a hair covered rug down for me on an ascending pile of straw. I thank him repeatedly then him and his mother dissapear.
I washed the upper half of my body in the clear stream and accidentally slipped in ankle deep clay wearing my shoes. I clumsily traipsed back to the hut across the fields dragging my feet in the earth, soon realising I was ignorantly trampling Benito’s sprouting crop.
At dark after hearing the definitive movements of unidentified lifeforms between the hay, I abandon the hut for the stars.
I setup the blue tarpolin and sleeping bag on the hard ground, sprayed my skin with natural repellant and tried to sleep.
I heard a loud evinrude type buzzing sound and flung the lid of my tortilla open catching a glimpse of a chocolate bar sized dragonfly, its beating wings framed in the glow of the embers like a strobelight.
I kept thinking the donkey would lay ontop of me in the night and crush me to death or stomp the shit out of me in a confused frenzy, that a team of coyotes would tear my face off after tracking me through the crap I took in a hole behind Benito’s hut, or that the rats in the hay would come out and poison my blood by biting chunks out of my finger like a piece of cheese.
The tarpolin is covered in condensation in and out, my sleeping bag is damp, I do NOT appreciate it.
Next day I walk, I wait for the sun to rise over the eastern ranges to remove the frost from my breath, the dew from my sleeping bag slung across my shoulders and the squelch from my shoes. There it is, the instant warmth, I smile. I don’t feel like looking at the motorists yet, zooming by, mouths gaping wide, wondering why or from where I came with skin so white.
As I walk, I become aware of the sweat forming in my backside, it’s itchy and I’m not wearing underwear, the area hasn’t been washed for over two days.
Shortly later I reach a shallow canyon either side of the road with a thin stream running down the centre of it. As I begin the rocky descent down there, I think about my intentions to write of such observations like the former, and how I’ve tried to refine myself from vulgar jocularities in adulthood. But what for? Everything I’ve done before has prepared me for this moment, my speech and my thoughts in it. It’s not mean’t to be beautiful, it’s just meant to be real.
I bathe in the stream, entertaining myself at the thought of a coach driving by with it’s high windows and passengers looking down at my pale naked body.
I’m going to hang out here a while and write, do some pushups, then I’ll walk til my shoes dry.
Down stream I see a bull on a rope with a tiny brown man looking at me waving, I smile and wave back then join him and his nephew at the top of the canyon. They invite me back to their house for something to eat, but not before they plough the field with a primitive wooden contraption harnessed to the necks of two bulls.
Juan is at the rear guiding the pick through the earth, jabbing the bull on the right in the hind quarters with a pointed object tied to a stick. “Sully! Ocho!” He shouts in a uvalial vibration reminiscent of Mongolian throat singing. The bulls lower leg is bleeding, it keeps dipping it’s head refusing to move, Emilio is up the front steering with a guide rope smiling under the incinerationg sun.
“SULLYY!!” Juan shouts as the whhoop of the stick cuts through the air thumping the flesh on the bulls ribcage with a hollow resound. It doesn’t move. Jaun prepares his footing to cane the bulls side once more, voicing a short laboured “ocho,” then **WHHOMP** SULLYYY!! The bull bucks into acceleration accross the field,
if it would only learn to move like the other bull it wouldn’t be bashed to death.
Juan takes to hitting the bull on it’s nose bone after repeateded non compliance, swinging the stick and breaking it on impact sending it’s other half flying 10metres away into the air. Is there a word to describe laughing helplessly when you know you shouldn’t?
I went back to their “casa” and met the family. They fed me pollo, frijoles, cheesy broccoli in soup with tortilla’s and cordial.
They kept pointing at the hammock and saying tranquilo but I didn’t understand. I was paranoid of outstaying my welcome and there was a storm coming.
I paused at the end of my stay to say “Gracias por la comida.” (thanks for the food) No problem, they said.
While leaving their property I wished I could think of a way to show my appreciation, anyway at all. Besides cleaning up and washing dishes.
I got on the road again and decided I was going to walk the rest of the 70km’s to Oaxaca, there will be shelter somewhere along the way.
I hear a beep behind me and raise my umbrella without looking, it beeps again and a man slows down offering me a ride in his four wheel drive, I’m not going to refuse.
I get in and try to look up some of the words my lunch hosts were saying to me earlier. I ascertain they were trying to warn me that it’s very dangerous to walk at night.
My first stop in the city is a bar to try Mezcal, then I will rest and continue the search for the magic mushroom.
Somewhere in Mexico,
I sit back and grin while the people with the information I need to get to the next point roll in and out of my journey. I need to get to Santa Marta train station and I can’t understand help desk’s instructions across the network labyrinth. A little brown man with ground teeth and a childs smile motions me to follow him overhearing my failed comprehension. It was bustling and he kept looking out for me over his shoulder, we had to change trains 3 times and he used one of his tickets for me. Usually I don’t like to smile too much at males because I don’t want them to think I’m gay.
The highway out of this town leads to Oaxaca, the heart of Mexico I’ve been told. I don’t even feel like getting a ride, I just want to walk and talk to myself. I feel like Forest, Forest Gump.
Some guy told me he had the best experience in the Oaxaca Mountains after eating Mushrooms. I’ve thought about….Okay I won’t bullshit, I’m going to do it too. Then I’m going to write while I’m buckled and post it unedited.
I walked from 6pm til 2am through intermittent showers. It got dark and the highway shoulder was uneven, grassy, cavernous and at times non existent. I noticed the tyre marks and chips out of the stone kerb where I was walking within a metre to giant square metal beasts with robotic halogen eyes and teeth, harrowing towards me flicking blue metal stones at my oesophagus. I feel fuzzy and slightly deafened with fright. At times I had to cross lanes walking with my back to the traffic, in all black, one slip, one dozing driver….
As I walked on a parallel street watching the rain blemish puddles before me, I hear barking up ahead, they spotted me from 70 fucking metres away and I can see the silhoutte of their legs shuffling around their bastion. I approach without turning my head, monitoring a group of 4 gnaring wolves from the shadow of my umbrella. They circle me, throwing fake lunges and nipping at my jeans leg. These fucking cunts are going to rip me to shreds, my whole body is tingling like something murderous is about to happen. A hairy fiend on my right strikes my hip like a caveat shark, if he bites me I am going to destroy it’s face with the end of this umbrella. It launches again biting my cotton knit tied to my waist. I keep walking un responsive. The barking grows more distant. I actually like those holes in the jumper makes it look like I don’t give a shit.
My knee starts to ache. Do you think soldiers who traversed the jungles of Vietnam had time for sore lateral collateral ligaments!!!
I remember George Bush limping on television one day after a chronic running injury, he said “Listen to your body.”
I found a rogue concrete highway barrier at the end of a street resting partially diagonal to shield the rain. I brushed my teeth and layed my blue tarpolin under it, figuring only a friendly neighbourhood would suspend colourful decorations above the middle of their street.
Dribble had just started to seep from the side of my mouth as I heard a number of snarls behind me. I sat still looking at my blue plastic coccoon waiting for these bastards to rip into my back. They just kept barking for 15 minutes until I packed up and left.
An hour down the road was a partially built service station secured behind a barb wire fence. I procured a spot to sleep for 3 hours in the concrete shell of a building under construction. I kept thinking the workman would arrive while I was sleeping and beat the crap out of me. Mexican tradies obviously haven’t heard the saying ,”Get in early get out early.”
Venice Beach, California.
It would be easy to come here and live on the beach, lots of people do it. There’s sunshine, showers and pizza.
It doesn’t feel like the healthiest atmosphere however, mainly because it’s filled with marajuana smoke.
To support yourself you can sell your bob marley paintings, pirated internet banksy prints, you can busk, or, you can beg with a “need money for penis reduction sign.”
One guy asked me for money on the way to the shop. I told him no. He said “I’m rich,” in a sarcastic tone and walked away. He seemed peaceful and it pissed me off. Do you know how much money I’ve given away to beggars? Do you think what money I have fell from the sky? I knew I was losing my way when I felt angry at someone else who asked me for money. They didn’t say thankyou.
Bill Pettis hangs around on a park bench outside the famous Venice Beach Muscle Gym, he wears speedos. I assume he’s homeless. When tourists attempt to take photos of the carved bodies heaving weights within the perimeter Bill gets in their way flexing one of his biceps and holding a portable radio up to his ear. People screw their faces up and navigate around him, he mumbles to himself and shuffles back to the bench. He only has a couple of teeth left and is quite incomprehensible, but Bill used to be somebody. He was a famous body builder 35 years ago, friend of “Arnies” and apparently had the biggest arms in the world.
I took a picture of him when he wasn’t looking and offered him a dollar, he accepted it and stuttered thankyou with a gentle gaze. Watching his primitive endeavours to reclaim the importance bodybuilding awarded him many years ago moved me at a deep empathetic level. I want to help him, but how? Money wont help. I can’t find his marbles for him, he’s the only one that can do that.
I left Perth 37 days ago. I’ve spent $3,572.90. Life in Cranbrook for the last 3 weeks has been easy while house sitting a 3 story place close to town. The owners took a holiday to Mexico and gave me a V8 Dodge to drive, complete snowboard setup and unlimited Wifi to use. I’ve been to 2 ski resorts close by and have made encouraging progress on the board. By the 4th day I could switch from heel to toe and make turns but I did get angry learning. Surely there’s only so many times you can smash your coccyx on the ice before it will break. Seeing kids a quarter of my age slicing through the tracks encouraged me to keep going. If I can learn to snowboard what else can I do?
At home I’ve been meditating, eating and spending a lot of time on the internet. Somedays before I go to bed I say “That’s it, I’m not using face book at all tomorrow”. Some areas of my life have coveted self discipline. Not this area.
I went to an ice hockey game and watched the players fight and spit every 5 seconds into the rink and on their team mates from the bench.
I went out with my new Buddy DAZ last night. He’s what you want from a friend, human and ginger haired. He teared up talking to me about his father, I hugged him. The only time I can cry is when I’m pissed out of my brain.
“Why aren’t you drinking?” A pair of slurring gentlemen request in unison at the bar. “Life is better when I don’t drink” I reply. “Oh bullshit” they proclaim motioning toward the bar to shout me a shot of tequila. “No, I’m serious men”. They do not appreciate my decline.
Within walking distance there is another bar called “Shotguns”. I now understand what these Gangnam Style posts about are.
There’s something about being on a dance floor full of drunk people that make’s me uncomfortable. It’s like the place is full of people not being themselves and the only way to get rid of the feeling is to join them.
Outside, walking down a lane way in the direction of the car, this girl run’s up to my side. “Do you remember me?”
She has wet brown eyes and straight brown hair that swings by the side of her face as we walk. She attempts to confirm her identity by detailing my raiment the day of our introduction. Ahh, yes. I remember, she was with DAZ one day. She had a tattoo behind her ear and colourful leggings on. She’s trouble I thought, maybe I’ll see her around. Between words she tries to catch my mouth with her bottom lip, her nose brushing past mine. I look down her top at her flat chest, the street light dilineates the striations over her sternum, an adjacent black bra. I’m hesitant to respond to her as some guy is watching us and calling her name, he is agitated. “Let me take your photo” I say. We separate, and the agitated swoops in, but not before my flash freezes her image onto a white canvas.
Tomorrow morning I’m hitch hiking to Nelson. I’ve heard countless people say how beautiful it is, full of hippies with a great ski mountain (Yes probably weed too but I’m not doing that anymore. Shut UP!)
I’m worried about being stranded at night on the way, it has happened before in Australia and I had to sleep on the side of the road. The difference here is it’s below zero and I will die. I’ve just ruined my $500 sleeping bag by not following washing instructions properly. If I survive and make it there, I have at least one place to stay. A guy emailed me in response to my advert on ilovenelson.com for a couch to sleep on. He said I was welcome at his home in town but…He has an American Pit Bull terrior which is “a good dog” but is very protective and doesn’t like people with anxiety. HAHAHAHAHAH. Lucky I’m vaccinated!
(Mum don’t read this)
Have you ever tried Cariboos? I saw a guy heading to the counter in the liquor store and this well illustrated orange can caught my eye in his hand. Were getting a haul of booze to drink for our Condo weekend a couple of towns away, and yes I guess I have started drinking again. I’m with that girl I spoke about in earlier posts. I’m not going to say her real name because I had sex with her and she has a boyfriend. I got the impression they hated each other and had some sort of open relationship going on. I didn’t think it was that big of a deal. This was before I met the guy. We had dinner at her parents house where I’m staying and her boyfriend was respectful and smiled when I talked to him. It became obvious that they were a legit couple.
The Girl’s friend is with us too at the Condo, she’s lovely, shy but encouragable. We’re all sitting on a futon sofa feeling warm and enjoying each others company.
Well I didn’t have a threesome. I’m sharing a bed with Girl, we discussed it before I came, along with some other things. We had been getting progressively touchy over the night but now the lights are out I’m hesitant to start exploring her landscapes.
(Me) “I’m worried about you getting attached to me. You know I’ll be gone soon”.
She redirects her brown bottom in the other direction.
(Her) “Oh for fuck sake, I’m not some irrational 20 year old Bimbo who thinks were going to settle down and have a picket fence. Give me a break”.
I laugh out loud. Well alright then. I was only getting about 50% from her and kept wondering if she was enjoying herself. Maybe I should have made the speech after the match but that could be misleading, and I don’t want any bad publicity amongst her hot friends (providing they can’t read).
We have had a few opportunities to get dirty since then and it took every ounce of virtue in my body to resist the temptation. I wonder what my mates would do. We have obvious chemistry, and a similar sense of humour, I don’t know that many girls that can make me laugh. She also has great tits.
I feel like there is something going on around me that I can’t see which punishes me or rewards me for the things I do and reasons I do them. Wether anyone knows or finds out about these activities is irrelevant, because deep inside, beyond my ego telling me that to be a man I have to screw as many chicks as possible, I know what is right and wrong.
I’d say there’s a 100% chance she will read this so it’s lucky she’s such a good sport. I know other people aren’t always going to be so forgiving. I said to her “You know I’m going to write about this don’t you”. “I wouldn’t expect anything less”.
Revelstoke, BC, Canada 01/02/13
Me “Hi can I book a taxi from 9th St in Revelstoke to the Greyhound terminal please?”
I confirm the pickup address.
Taxi ” What time?”
Taxi “Ok we’ll see you at 2AM”
Me “Don’t you want a name or phone number or something?”
Taxi “No it’s ok well have a driver there at 2AM”
I’m writing a blog and watching Bridesmaids with Nick. The bride during rehearsal shits in the street. This is hilarious even when I haven’t been smoking weed. 130AM crept up unnoticed, I’m still dirty after snowboarding, dinner and “curling”. My pack is a “son of a bitch” to organise especially when it’s all over the lounge room floor. I’m going to be on the bus to Cranbrook for the next 8 hours so I want to be clean.
Being wasted and in a rush is not good for a Heem particularly in unfamiliar territory. I make it out the front at 205AM. “Did I miss it, did I miss it?” I don’t have a canada sim card yet so I can’t make any calls. My bus is at 300AM. It’s 225 and I’m flipping out. I have to go wake up Nick inside so I can plug my flat laptop into a power point to ring the taxi on Skype. They reassure me the taxi is on the way. “Is this what’s it’s like overseas? They say the driver is on it’s way, go back to watching CSI and the taxi never comes?”
He comes. I can talk to anyone when I’m bent. It does what a drug is supposed to do.
1. Makes me laugh
2. Makes me sociable
3. Dissolves my ego
4. Connects me with the law of nature. (Karma)
I attempt to embrace the “True Essence of Giving” in my life which embodies kindness to another without the need for any recognition. The purpose of my following recounts are to illustrate why my life is changing and enjoying new wholesome relationships. “Ok that’s $9.50”. I look for the biggest bill in my clip and tip the driver. His face changed shape, everything lifted upwards. He did not expect that.
There is no one at the bus stop. It’s 3AM. I pace up and down and take some photos, everything I shoot is incredible, all my thoughts are profound, I’m a genius! (Popular creative delusions of mine under the influence). Why isn’t this fucking bus here? I opened the email ticket on wifi before I left the house so I could get on the bus. It’s 4AM. As I scan through the email, I picture my Perth homie “Bassett” rolling his eyes and telling me how hopelessly disorganised I always am. He’s right, my bus was 330AM yesterday morning.
I’m sitting on a seat, the ground is at least 10cm deep in ice. There is no one around. I have my $500 sleeping bag and there is a toilet around the corner from which it’s basin I have been drinking. There’s no way of getting back to 9th St, I’m on my own. I love a challenge. I decide I’m going to sleep in the toilet and try get a ride in the morning. A french guy rocks up with his ski gear to wait for a bus, all he can say is “Yes” and “Calgary”.
At 430AM a short man appears from a motel cabin door, he looks like a bus driver. “I wonder if he’s an arsehole”.
Me “Excuse me? are you a driver?”.
Man “I most certainly am”
I explain where I’m going and what I’ve done hoping he would know somewhere I could sleep for the night. He laughs and says don’t worry “Well get you there”. The bus he’s driving to Calgary is going to be late so he invites me to an all night cafe while we wait. His name is Dennis and when I insisted on paying for his food his soul lit up. One might say of course people smile if you give them money but it’s not the money that’s making them smile, it’s the fact you care about a stranger enough to share it. Sometimes I think about giving away all my savings. Wouldn’t that make things interesting?
Jesse came back after couch surfing the other night and said “That’s it I’m going to Revelstoke, I’ve had enough of the city”.
I eschewed going out in Vancouver last night to stare at the wall and stress some more about my next gambit. I want to keep moving and I know Jesse is leaving for the snow at 12am. There was a very short girl on the top bunk across from me, she was reading a “Walking Dead” comic. I was really hoping she would just come down from there and start undressing to be honest.
I’m sitting in our room in Revelstoke after 12 hours on the bus. It costs $180 per night. I’m sharing it with a couple from Perth we met on the way, the dude used to live around the corner from me in Eden Hill. They are here to work and snowboard over the next 6 months. Jesse is couch surfing somewhere else in town.
(Me) “Show me a piece of music your into Andrew”.
(Andrew) *Plays a metal band called COG*
(Me) “That’s why I travel man coz you meet interesting people”.
Money is sliding through my hands very quickly, I’ve easily spent $1000 in 8 days. I don’t want to write this but I’m stoned again. I know, trust me, I know. I don’t have travel insurance yet and a girl on the bus told me how her friend just went home with an exploded upper torso from ambitious novice snowboarding. What if people are really clicky around here and hate beginners? I’m going to a 1 day Vipassana meditation course on Australia Day, an amazing gift. After that I’m going to Cranbrook to stay with a Canadian Girl (that I boned) who couch surfed at my house 8 years ago in Perth.
I left my new family in Hobart and headed to the confluence in Sorrell where one direction leads to the Port Arthur Convict site, the other to Freycinet National Park where I’m going. A scientist named Craig picks me up, he’d just finished 4 weeks on foot in the Pilbara, he’s also into photography. I asked him why he picked me up, he replied “why not?” A truckie ride told me about the deterioration of Triabunna’s local economy since the wood chip mill closed down, forgot his name. A state housing contractor took me to the Coles Bay Road turnoff and it was here I struggled to hold a conversation. That’s the thing when your hitching, most people want to talk and I felt terrible that all I could say was “yeah” and “oh, that sounds cool”. Hopefully a thankyou was sufficient gratitude. I got a ride right through to Freycinet within a few minutes with Hannah, a local massage therapist, yoga teacher and contemporary hippie. I opened up to her on account of her credentials and found myself being corrected on the way I “phrase things”. I soon became reserved as the conversation was far too didactic for my liking. It did remind me of something I already know and that is “Be wiser than your peers if you can, but do not tell them so”.
Freycinet National Park is a 38km long, wild and mountainous peninsula on the East Coast of Tasmania. It is dead this time of year being the coldest winter month for the region. After a night in a YHA backpackers I dissapeared into the park for 3 days. After walking for 3 hours to the park and along the track, I spotted a monolith about 100 metres away on a steep incline. My inner child spoke to me and upon investigation I found a cavernous composition of rocks and evidence another hiker shared a similar sense of adventure to my own. I will stay in the cave tonight.
To the sky glance an eye
A sea eagle is graceful
A photograph it may be
Floating high on a blue canvas
The sun does show he looks at me
Long tinted wings like eyelashes.
I collected some firewood, despite the no camp fire instructions at the park entrance, “This is my park just as much as it is theirs” I say. On a west facing rock platform I setup and record a time lapse sunset, screaming, playing evocative sounds from my phone and dancing in the warmth of retreating suns rays. I think I understand the meaning of surreal. It was tight in the cave, I had enough room for my blow up mattress, my pack (just) and a fire in a rock recess. My eyes felt like they were bleeding and my clothes still smell like smoke, I was thinking about the weather, if I was going to be savaged by the predator and if I was going to freeze to death. It was super cool and another tick in the box. I did have a dream about a giant seagull coming towards me that made me jump, literally.
Cooks Beach the next day after 3 hours of walking, resting my aching back and chasing butterflies. The sky is a patchwork of black and grey as I leave the beach through a clearing in the bracken. This is a campsite? An eerieness lingers in the whistling air, a purple toy shovel snapped in half lays forgotten on the layer of brown pine needle beneath me. A track barely visible winds through a forest of decaying shrubland, fallen trees obstruct my path, twisting branches merge overhead creating shadowy arches. I can see the colours of a building filtering through the fauna, I get a small headspin and continue monitoring my peripherals reminding myself it’s safe here. After all, I haven’t seen a person in two days.
I enter a clearing with sparse rich wet grass, there is an old campfire, a wooden bench and a sandstone log cabin with the front door boarded in. I have to get in there I think, looking at the dusty floorboards through a missing shard in the window. I investigate the perimeter as night falls and find a rear access point with an inward opening picket door. I will stay here tonight. I started a fire in the vintage iron stove and read graffiti from as far back as the 70’s carved into the window frames. I started to get jumpy around 8pm, it was pitch black outside and I kept pointing my little LED torch out into the misty woods while filling up my billy. It reminded me of when I was a kid and had to put the rubbish out, “I’m not scared, I’m not scared” then when you turn your back on the darkness you sprint for the door. I was worried about the sanitation of that rainwater because I saw wallaby shit on the roof draining into the tank. How did a wallaby get up there? I saw 3 huntsmen, one of which I nearly put my hand on getting water, it was flaring it legs out to touch my finger, I whipped my hand away quickly, the torch light reflecting off its ebony fangs. Once again I’m being smoked alive but this is the best peppermint tea I’ve ever tasted, I’m eating Tinned kippers and rye bread with almond spread and strawberry jam. I’ve been waiting for years to have a campfire, diligently maintaining a healthy flame. I haven’t had phone reception for a week, nobody knows where I am, there’s not a thought in my mind. I wish it was my birthday. I’m in the peace zone.
The next morning I started heading for the exit via the Tourist Renown “Wineglass Bay”. I started rushing with an almost frantic pace with the plans to get out of Freycinet today and head back to Hobart. I was puffing and getting hot, there was a monkey on my back repeating songs over and over, rehashing passed relationships and I could have done betters with a pointless circumnavigation. Trying to relax, trying to breath, calm down it’s OK. Trying just turns the crank and powers the machine. I look up to the trees in my frustration and take a moment to observe my surroundings radiating my breath into my limbs. A cluster of lipstick red flowers shaped like gramophones sharpen in my focus, a cloudy blue sky backdrops 20 grass coloured birds chasing eachother around the tree tops in a noisy malarkey. “What’s the rush man?” “You don’t have to do anything or be anywhere.”
I’m so running behind schedule with my updates. Freycinet was at least 2 weeks ago. Right now I’m at a good samaratins house in Iron knob 88km’s from the halfway point Sydney to Perth. I got stranded here coz noone would even smile at me on the Eyre Highway let alone give me a lift.
Something is up in Kings Cross. There are more rough looking, scar faced people in Nike trainers flanking Darlinghurst Road than usual today. They appear to be looking for something as they speak of who said what and who owes who. We are but ghosts in the zeitgeist, among no danger, providing ones own business is mind.
An aboriginal man in discussion at a bus stop snaps his hands to his chin retreating backwards as a 6’2 caucasian brute ascends upon him from what seemed like a black hole in the middle of the road. One covets the finesse with which the offensive lunges off his back foot towards the target, certainty in his glare. His pants are pulled up high with a white shirt tucked into them, the overlocking on a singlet underneath helps illustrate this characters jail ability. I am desperate to push record, but thats not minding my own business is it.
What’s so special about a Wednesday? Is this heightened felonious energy just coincidence? Or has the intermittent focus on this subculture subconsciously motivated it to impersonate itself?
An education from Pete Rock on his first trip to Australia.
Pete Rock became significant in the 90’s for his unique soul/jazz style of hip hop (heavily influenced by his father’s musical tastes) firstly with a remix for Public Enemy – ‘Shut Em Down’ and then his releases with CL Smooth.
It’s amusing how Americans like talking about our native animals when they’re here, almost like we share the same fascination.
“I came here tonight to play every kind of music, so don’t nobody *acks* me to play anything.” “Let’s see if you can appreciate some shit”.
Using a digital setup with turntables Pete opens with a soul R&B tune that didn’t make much noise but the track that followed was a beautiful piece that I wish I knew. The first 45 minutes consisted mainly of funk, soul and disco tunes and commentary like “I want yall to understand where the history comes from”. Pete also said “I grew up on this type of music, this is what made me funky” while executing some fine turntablism over a couple of unidentified breaks and basslines. Some more familiar tracks included ‘Cymande – Brothers on the slide’ (1974) ‘Brick – Dazz’ (1976) ‘Chic – Good Times’ (1979) ‘Darryl Hall & John Oates – I can’t go for that’ (1982) and ‘Nick Straker Band – A little bit of jazz’ (1981) which was nicely slammed into the mix. He also played ‘Liquid Liquid – Cavern’ from 1983 which inspired ‘White Lines’ from Grandmaster Flash and the Furious 5. Tunes by Prince, Michael Jackson, Rick James and the Bee Gees followed, receiving sing along validation.
The next section was all about 90’s hip hop and raw shit like ‘EPMD – Rampage’ which Rock has remixed. These people like their Tribe Called Quest especially ‘Scenario’ as about 5 tracks were played consecutively, ‘Oh My God’ being my favourite. Straight into a similar format of Gangstarr music and ‘Full Clip’ didn’t quite have the desired effect, seeing as we heard it earlier in the night and it really does get smashed at every hip hop party, I look forward to hearing other not so published tracks. ‘Legacy’ and ‘Zonin’ would fall into this category although weren’t as celebrated as ‘Mass Appeal’ and ‘Above the Clouds’. It was about this time we learned that Rock and DJ Premier have an album due out soon.
Time for some warm Pete Rock production with ‘Fakin Jaxx’ and ‘It’s A Love Thing’ hitting the spot, ‘Run DMC – Down with the King’ (also Rock) gets the deserved support and is a must have for any follower. Everyone seems to be feeling good as the soundtrack creates an environment where you could either watch the DJ or chat and be merry with others. Another 3 beautiful tracks ‘Back on the Block’ and ‘Tell Me’ earn the “oohs” but T.R.O.Y is overlooked, so much so he rewinds it back demanding acknowledgement.
The remaining 20 minutes was dedicated to his cousin Heavy D’s music who recently passed away.
By the end alot of people had left leaving room to walk around but Pete notice didn’t continuing to seek feedback and “make money monies” with the same enthusiasm.
It went on a bit long, an effective climax would have been after T.R.O.Y seeing as it’s his defining track and he could have weaved Heavy D in earlier.
Before coming I imagined seeing an MPC in use with Pete performing the type of instrumentals you listen to while looking out the train window. Some of this was achieved without the live component however. I guess he had something for everyone with the party tunes, his influences and the more soulful hip hop side. A decent party in a stylish venue with friendly people, chocolate boy wonder Pete Rock.
Pete Rock Kicks – All White Nike Air-Force 1’s.
Other tracks worth mentioning.
Bobby Byrd – Hot Pants
Rick James – Give it to me Baby
Group Home – Livin Proof
Chubb Rock – Treat Em Right
Big Daddy Kane – Warm it up Kane
Public Enemy – Shut Em Down (Pete Rock Remix)
Nas – The World is Yours (Produced by Pete Rock)
Keni Burke – Rising to the Top
Sell out gigs are becoming customary for Luke Dubs and El Gusto who played a home game @ ‘The Standard’ tonight to promote their latest single ‘Speak of the Devil’.
We have support from local Producer Flume @ 0930 who’s style of beats and chill come recommended from the headliners, making him the perfect accomplice to the ambience of the night. People were probably still doing their makeup when he came on, but those who began to fill the floor during his set, met Flume’s sound with claps and vocal approbation. I’m no authority on describing his music but I bought his 3 track single straight up. It’s called ‘Sleepless’.
Joyride. There’s nothing like 45 second snatches of music to keep the crowd interested and the jovial big man cut his way through the party mix to bring the growing numbers energy to the next tier. Amongst toasting and a genre hopping selection a standout would have to be the self produced unreleased bass jam featuring Drapht. Looking forward to this one. Legend!
**Joyride Kicks – Air Force 1’s*
Luke Dubs takes the mic. “Thanks to everyone for coming down tonight, we have a new album coming out in February and we are very fucken excited”.
The first sounds to play are cool and unfamiliar (new material?) until the “Yo Yo just relax” from ‘Tapedeck Sound’ kicks in. The crowd responds with a unison head nod while we begin a celebration of these two instrumental kings recent and back catalogue.
Not long into the performance there is some amusingly planned confusion between the pair when unidentified voices start projecting through the speakers. “I’m just wondering if I should call you” sings out, as Alana Stone and Urthboy bounce up from their hiding positions on stage for ‘Your Call’ from the ‘Threads’ (2008) album. What fun, we didn’t even see you crouching down in the shadows!
**Urthboy Kicks – White/Orange Airforce 1’s**
“Give it up for El Gusto on the Mpc!” Dubs gives the fans a new tune alert while Gusto stutters a “Please let me get down” vocal sample from Busta Rhymes (I hope) over club bass. In between turning knobs and working his Synthesizers Dubs keeps a close eye on the audience’s responses to the new material. A shaking dance floor offers him assurance.
There is a number of young B-girls and boys together down the front looking purposeful and my suspicions are confirmed when I hear the security guards talking about a pack of dancers about to take the stage. When vocalist Chaos Emerald jumps into the lights to take her role in “Speak with the Devil’ everybody knows what’s up. The stage presence has multiplied instantly and one of the bboy ninjas from the film clip is pumping up the crowd with breaker gestures and attitude. Joyride has found his way back on stage armed with a mic and as the intro plays to the song that everyone you show likes, it’s a pretty cool feeling to be involved in this shit.
The last single Herms released and still very relevant ‘Get in my Life’ brought the ruckus with its nasty bassline and “Run the Traack!” vocal. We also heard ‘Can’t Stop’ from the ‘Tales from the Drift’ album and an anticipated solo effort from Dubs on the key tar. Another ‘Threads’ album favourite ‘Frayed’ got sing along approval and Dubs told us of it’s personal importance to the pair.
There’s too many essential tunes and moments to remember them all (I’m going to try in future by recording whole sets) but after 3 albums, 2 Ep’s and however many live shows, Hermitude understand how to move people. The latest single is a good example of this which has likely attracted new listeners to their music. Where the evidence to mastery lies, is their proven ability to retain the people that have been listening to them for 10 years. It simply is intelligent downbeat music from two seemingly down to earth guys. We look forward to February 2012 and I wear my Hermitude shirt with pride.
Sorry No Tickets
I’m not going to bed until I’ve got the new album.
Welcome to the Oxford Art Factory Sydney, make some noise for Ellesquire. Back in town from recent touring the East with the headliners, it’s good to hear the man is copping some national recognition. With good looks and more than his fair share of charisma the Big Village representative and his multi talented selector Sam Z, demonstrate they are in fact “ready” for this. Dropping all the favourites from his debut album, BV family members Rapaport and P Smurf make appearances, illustrating that everything is good at home. Not even tonsillitis can stop Smurf’s delivery and temple vein as he compounds why he’s shaking hands everywhere he goes.
“You soft cocks are off chops like Vegetarians” but the Live Brass section from Sam Z turned the kids into screaming pentecostals, while he struggled to hide the pleasure in his occupation. I sung along with my eyes closed to “I am ready” and never get sick of the drums on the outro. The punching “Dragons Mouth” set the place alight and it’s no wonder LS had to ask for less smoke on stage. The popular topic of “Chasing The Pay” was addressed and the echo of “I’d rather be a smart arse than a dumb c*nt” was audible from the crowd who are obviously familiar with “On the Prowl”. A smooth performance tonight combining the quality productions from P Major with his own distinctive style of lines and hooks. If your giving up drinking you can start that tomorrow coz Ellesquire’s having a party and it’s called “Ready”. You can download it now.
All Black Nike Air Max 90’s
Didn’t catch any other supporting acts.
Are there any thunda cats here tonight? Are you serious? Fuck yeah! Album Launch time on Obese Records, all tickets on the door are gone and this highly polished hiphop act enter the stage with the body language of people who are on the right track. We have Dj Morgs in the headphones wearing sum Reebok Ex-O-Fit Hi Tops in white. Jeswon is brandishing a gold tape deck neck chain and sum (I could be wrong) black Jordan 5’s. Tuka’s playful grin and super low slung jeans have the ladies attention while I wonder where he got that shirt with a woman on it suffering from haemolacria.
If you were down the front near the subs for the first bass signal from Morgs you had a new hairstyle. I looked to my right and swapped a wtf? with a young lady who’s thorax was undoubtedly reverberating like mine. Omg @ “Busy With It” the people went bananas. I had to shield my camera from the heaving mass of lunatics while some estrogen fueled late teens in front, tugged at the boys trousers on stage. Is this a fucking Beatles show? The boys took time for low 5’s with the crowd and the same appreciation was displayed when the eerie intro of “Paint The Town Red” sounded. The dude next to me really wanted me to know that he knew the words, I was like respect man but floss every day no matter what!
The thundercats dynamic energy and teleporting skills prove challenging for a cameras auto focus and if any white fluorescent light did shine through, the shooters came out from behind walls like cockroaches at night.
3/4’s of the way through we got a taste of some nu school bass including “Emalkay’s – When I Look At You”. This inspired some abrupt spasmodic body movements and there’s no doubt that this sound (also called dubstep) is very popular with the youth.
To a Thundamentals show rookie it’s clear the crew have been practicing, shining the kind of confidence on stage that any aspiring and possibly established MC wishes for.
Mid set, Tuka acknowledged a kid he knew up the front with a handshake. You can call me soft and it was a beautiful moment to see the kid look around at his mates with a smile that radiated I’m so happy to be a part of this.
A staunch position was adopted with a ‘Wu Tang Clan – Tigerstyle’ tribute and I wouldn’t be surprised if a lot of people had never heard of it. Dj Morgs is a weapon and I wonder how many hours he has spent scratching.
I Should also mention the whole performance was accompanied by a live trumpeter.
Overall the Thundamentals Crew have good reason to be smiling, they are good at what they do and you can tell that they believe in every word they rap. You only have to look into what they mean by their recent album title ‘Foreverlution’ to know the message is positive. With flawless performances like this and being more Aussie than volleys and rock wallabies, there’s no better recommendation than word of mouth.