Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Ending Things, Red Shirt, Home Videos, and Memories

1. Dreamed of having extreme love for Australia. I get to Sydney with my family. We're walking around. I bitch my mom out for being a bad listener. Then my mom asks if we can check into the hotel and freshen up a bit before going out again.  

I wouldn't mind using the toilet and freshening up a bit. But I'm afraid, if I go back, we'll end up being in the room too long. I worry that my family will take too long to get ready. And if I am ready earlier and want to leave on my own; they'll give me a hard time about that.  So I decide to not go to the room, and I explore Sydney on my own. I walk around. There's so much I want to see. I'm overwhelmed. And I'm so much in love. I'm tempted to kiss the walls. 

I woke up; went to pee; and then later the dream continued.  My dad and I decide to go to a museum. We hop on an elevator to get to the museum; and the elevator goes all crazy. It tilts in various ways. We get off without getting to the museum. We both express regret about not taking the stairs, especially since we're usually both the type to take the stairs. 

2. Wanted to say that the Sydney in my dream looked nothing like Sydney in real life. Since my dream self had such a strong passionate love for the place; you might think that Dream-Sydney was better than Real-Sydney. But no. It totally wasn't. I don't really remember what it was like, but I remember waking up and thinking it wasn't at all impressive.

You know what. Maybe it felt like a giant mall. Like all of Sydney was inside a building.

3. Got a text from Tim telling me that he watched a video about Tasmania while he was in the airport lounge.

4. Bemused by what I just read in an old 2011 blog post: Felt thankful to Noel Pearson and Ruth Parks, because I found two of my favorite friends through them. I once wrote blog posts about Parks and Pearson. Later they were read by strangers who were kind enough to write to me. Now those strangers are my friends. I think that's really awesome.

I cut off ties with both of those friends. I mean I told them, Sayonara. It's over between us. Let's stop writing each other.

Not in those exact words.

I don't usually do that.

I don't know if I've ever done that with anyone besides those two people.

I broke up with a boyfriend, which was incredibly hard for me. But I didn't tell him not to talk to me anymore. It was more along the lines of, we can still be friends.

I've reduced contact with someone—just by not responding to her emails. But I still plan to write her back if she stops being so damn self-absorbed.

5. Remembered that there might be one more person I told to get lost.

But I'm not sure.

Anyway, it's interesting that both Noel Pearson and Ruth Parks brought me friends that would end up making me feel angry and uncomfortable.

The other thing they had in common is when I cut off the ties, both ex-friends tried to get me back by sending me an attacking email full of insults. I think they felt if they challenged me, I'd come crawling back. The message was kind of along the lines of, unless you continue our friendship; you're going to prove to me that you're a selfish, superficial, weak loser who can't handle differences of opinion.

6. Wanted to say that there is a part of me that feels not good enough, because I cut ties.

I guess I'd like to be one of those people who can tolerate anyone—the type that has unending patience and is 100% open-minded.

It turns out that's not me. I should have known, since often I can't even tolerate very likable people.

7. Remembered that both the Noel Pearson and Ruth Parks friends were quite homophobic.

There're quite a few coincidences here. Should I start to wonder if maybe one of them was pretending to be the other?

8. Decided that it's unlikely that the two people I rejected were one and the same, despite there being various coincidences.

9. Read Andrew's comment on my last post, which reminded me that last night I remembered the t-shirt I forgot in the last post. It's a red one from Melbourne. And there are things on it. I forgot what. Maybe it's the seal of Australia? Or the seal of Melbourne?

The crazy thing is, it's the shirt I wore most recently; and the shirt I wear most often. Probably because red is a good color for me.  I don't know why I forgot it when I was listing shirts yesterday.

There's one thing I don't like about the shirt ,though. When I try to look down at a book when wearing the shirt, the letters on the shirt look like they're moving. I don't know if it's a normal optical illusion or there's something wrong with my brain.

I don't remember having the problem recently, though; so maybe it was a temporary thing. Or maybe it depends on how I'm sitting when reading a book.

10. Figured out my red shirt optical illusion thing. At least I think I did.

I'm pretty sure it happened when I was reading books on my iPhone. Because just now I held the phone up as if reading, and I could see the lower half of my World Series t-shirt. Then I held up a regular book and that area of my shirt was blocked.

11. Decided that, if I remember, I will change into my red Australia shirt later and see if the letters still move for me if I try to read on the iPhone.

12. Started watching an episode of Neighbours.

Here is the non-USA shirt I mentioned yesterday.

13. Found article about Osaka 6 shirts. They're made by a company called Superdry.

14. Learned from Lord Wiki that Superdry is a British clothing company that specializes in vintage Americana and Japanese stuff.

15. Went to the Superdry website.

It looks like most of their shirts say Superdry or Osaka 6, so I don't think they're making all the USA shirts I've been seeing on Aussie television. I kind of wondered if that was the case.

16. Watched Toadie (Ryan Moloney) showing Chris (James Mason) his videos of Baby Nell (Scarlett Anderson), and that inspired me to watch a video of baby Jack.

I hadn't watched it in so long.

Even before the Nell videos, though; I had been thinking of home movies.

Last night I dreamed about the Cystic Fibrosis camp where Tim and I first met. In the morning, I started thinking of the kids in my cabin the first year. I surprised myself by remembering all their names despite it being over twenty-five years ago.  I made a video the second year. I haven't watched it in so long, and I don't really have a working VCR in which I can watch it. Or it might work, but I don't know how to use it.

I was wondering if I should transfer the camp video, and other videos, to DVD.  But then I started wondering if it would be a mistake.  Do we need to have all these videos available to watch? Is it important to keep watching the past?  Or is it enough to just remember what we naturally remember? More importantly, is it better to stay focused on the present rather than diving into nostalgia?

I have lots of home videos that are easily watchable. They're on DVD or on YouTube. I rarely watch those.

17. Thought that maybe it's good to have videos and photos available...even if you look at them only once in a great while.

Maybe sometime in the future, I will go ahead and have my VHS tapes transferred. As for today, I at least have some photos of camp I can look at. I might do that.

18. Looked at the old camp photos. It really didn't do anything for me. So I think I might disagree with the advice that Toady gave Chris. He told him to take many photos of his future baby.

Sometimes I think we spend too much time trying to capture life and not enough time enjoying it.

One of the reasons we take these photos is for the benefit of our future selves. But it's likely our future selves are going to be too busy with their present to look at forty pictures from a past birthday party. One picture from that birthday party would probably be enough.

19. Thought about our lost camera fiasco in Sydney. We lost many photos, and for the time period that our friends visited us from Tasmania, we have only one photo. It was a souvenir one from the aquarium.  I mourned the loss of the photos, but now I really don't care much. The one photo is kind of enough.

That's not to say I don't appreciate the many videos and photos I DO have of Australia. I look at them every so often. But I think on future trips there, I'm going to cut down on taking pictures. I'm going to follow my dad's old rule—don't take a picture of something you can buy on a postcard.

If we go to Cradle Mountain, we should take one or two photos of us in front of the mountain. But we don't need to recapture a photo that's already on many websites and photography books.

Now it might be different for Tim, because he's into serious photography. So taking professional-level photographs of Cradle Mountain might be an important activity for him. But for me? I should make sure to put down the camera and enjoy the sites with my eyes.

20. Thought about my dad. Although we're on the same page about the postcard thing. Or at least he used to believe that. He's very much like Toadie. He believes in taking as many photos as possible, and then the photos become one of his most valued treasures. He has online photo albums, but also creates physical albums.  He has so many albums! I think for him you can never have too many photos. One of his arguments is that we need photographs to help us remember things.  I think he has a point...to some degree. Maybe?

But if we don't already remember something, and we look at a photograph of it, won't it just confuse us?

21. Decided to try and think about what I remember from our 2009 days in Australia—the ones not photographed.

Although that's kind of cheating, because I have detailed trip journals of those days on this blog.

But without looking back at those, here's what I can remember—We went to Manly with Tracey and her family. There was a blue bottle a little too close to Tara. There was a bomb scare at the ferry. We were stuck in Manly for awhile. Tara felt sick later and thought she might vomit. Her dad told her to throw up on his shirt. I freaked out because I have a vomit phobia. We had Indian food. People ordered goat meat.  I was upset and ashamed about freaking out. The next day I took a walk alone to the Opera House where they had the swim race. I saw Ronald McDonald, who looked creepy. We all went to the Rocks Market. Alex and Molly went off alone somewhere.  Wait. Rewind.  Remembered that Jack broke his Crocs in Manly. Had to buy him new shoes. Okay, back to the Rocks Market. Tracey and her family had scones, while Tim, Jack, and I went to Hyde Park where there was a food festival. Gina met us there. Later Tracey and her family showed up. Tara and Jack played with their little Russian doll things they had bought at the puppet store. We ate some Peruvian Dessert. Molly wanted Tracey to take her shoe shopping. That night we went on the train to go eat at the Outback Steakhouse. At the station, we smelled one of the Russian dolls thing. It smelled like cherries. Somewhere along the line, Tyrone killed a cockroach.  Jack impressed Molly or Alex by knowing some of the Australian National Anthem. The next day we went to the aquarium where we met up with Michelle and her son Gabriel. Michelle was angry about the fact that in order to exit the aquarium you have to go through the souvenir shop.  On the way to the aquarium, we stopped at the bank and also got mini cupcakes. After the aquarium, we went to the Lizard Lounge. Maybe ate lunch there? Then later we went to get ice-cream at the Passionflower place. We got mad at the people who worked there, because they didn't let us eat inside. I don't remember what flavor ice-cream I got, but for some reason, I remember that Tracey got Jaffa. Or at least I think she did.  We walked Tracey and her family to the train station when it was time to say good-bye. I remember I almost cried when Tara and Jack hugged each other good-bye.

22. Felt satisfied with myself and my memory. I think it's evidence for the fact that we can remember a lot without photographs.

23. Thought about how, even if we take a lot of photos on the trip, we often fail to capture important moments—the fights, the tears, the inside jokes, the conversations, the belly laughs, etc.  All that gets captured in the camera of our mind. Sometimes those photographs are remembered forever. Sometimes they're thrown away. Sometimes, they're hidden away; and come out out only in our nighttime dream adventures.

24. Compared our 2009 trip with our 2013 one. In 2009, my main way of recording the trip was by taking notes and later writing blog entries about each day of the trip. For 2013, I took videos and later edited them into montage thingies.

I much prefer the 2009 method. I can't say I read those entries often, but writing them was a fantastic experience. I felt like I was reliving the trip.  Editing the videos was mostly frustrating, because there were too many things I failed to capture. Plus, I tried too hard to fit the video clips into a song and ended up cutting too much out.

25. Started watching another episode of Neighbours.

I'm going to take close notice of the t-shirts.

The first one, on this episode, is worn by Bailey (Calen MacKenzie). It's a USA thing again, but also space-related. Bailey's into that kind of thing.

I didn't get a good capture of the writing on the shirt, and I'm too lazy to try again. So I'll just tell you what it says. It's USS Enterprise. I see from Google that the spaceship version of USS Enterprise is a fictional Star Trek thing, but there are also real aircraft with that name.

26. Felt bad when watching blood drive on Neighbours, because I've never donated blood before. It's silly. I'm not afraid to do it, and I'm not against it.  It's more like it's never been convenient.

That sounds really shallow.

On the other hand, why don't they make blood drives more convenient? Why aren't they there at our local yearly Stock Show? Or when we go to get a wellness check-up, why don't they offer to take our blood?

Are there ever blood drives at our local library?

Most pharmacies these days offer vaccines. Why not also collect blood?

27. Figured that I will probably not donate blood anytime soon. With my driving-ability deficiency and Tim hardly being here, I am stressed enough about feeling the need to go places and worrying about when I'll find the chance to do it. I want to go to the doctor to figure out if I have leg circulation problems. I want to get my moles checked out by a dermatologist. I don't think I've gone to one in over ten years. I also would like them look at the ugly brown spots on my face. And, I have a rash on the top of my breast that's taking a long time to go away.

I need to take Jack to his wellness exam sometime this summer or fall.

I'm already stressed enough about medical stuff, so I'm going to ignore the persistent mean little voice that's telling me I'm selfish and lazy for not going out of my way to donate blood.

28. Continued to feel bad.

29. Made myself feel better by searching for news I remembered reading awhile back. It's about how scientists are saying blood transfusions are overused. So although my blood might save a life if I made the effort to donate; it could also be that my blood ends up harming someone.

30. Wanted to say that although blood transfusions are overused; that doesn't mean they're never needed. So kudos to people who HAVE donated blood, especially those who have gone out of the way to do so.  If everyone was as lazy as me when it comes to blood-donating, many lives would probably be lost.

And kudos to all the dead people who have donated their organs. Yeah, there's a chance your organ might have ended up killing someone. But that person would have likely died anyway. At least you gave them a chance, and maybe a time period of healthiness.

31. Wanted to also give a big pat on the back to all the living people who have donated a kidney, part of their liver, their blood marrow, etc.  It's a fantastic and brave sacrifice. I hope I'd be brave enough to do the same if put in that situation.  And I hope if someone I love is in that situation; there's someone brave and generous enough to make that sacrifice.

32. Remembered the Nina Proudman dilemma on Offspring.  It was a great ethical/moral question. Do you donate part of your liver; risk your own life; and potentially orphan your baby daughter? Or do you say no and let your brother watch his infant daughter die?

Shit. That makes me want to cry.

33. Enjoyed Nikki's post about knowing about her upcoming surprise party.  Her husband failed to keep the party a secret from her. Then later Nikki failed to keep it a secret that she knew about the party.

Tim planned a surprise party for my 30th birthday party. A friend accidentally (or maybe purposely?) told me about it. It was kind of fun watching people try to hide things, and I tried to hide the fact that I knew they were hiding something.

It's like the storyline on Coronation Street. Kylie and Gail are trying to hide the fact that Kylie's baby might be Nick's and not David's. Meanwhile David is trying to hide the fact that he knows his daughter might be his niece rather than his daughter.  Nick is in the hospital recovering from a brain injury. Kylie is afraid he'll tell David about their affair. Meanwhile, David already knows about the affair and is afraid Nick will let Kylie know that David already knows.

What's harder—keeping a secret or hiding the fact that already you know about the secret that the other person is struggling to hide?

34. Did some major kitchen cleaning. Still. The kitchen continues to look like crap. It's so frustrating. Now I'm going to take a break and watch another episode of Neighbours. Or actually, I'm going to take watch a segment of an episode of Neighbours. Then I need to vacuum.

35. Thought about what Evan (Samuel Johnson) said on The Secret Life of Us about the universe screwing with you when you feel like your life is on an upswing.

I was thinking that another time the universe messes with us is when we're very stressed about small things. Then suddenly, the universe will send you a disaster that makes all the small stuff seem quite small.

So I started to worry because I've been stressed lately about probably-small things. I don't want the universe to send me a disaster to make me appreciate my easy life.

That being said...we have been thrown a pretty huge curveball this summer.  Tim's brother is very sick. It's so sad and stressful.  Is that enough? I would think so. But the universe might think differently.  That's why if you have one sick relative, it's likely you're going to soon hear about five others that are very sick. Upset to learn that your favorite aunt has breast cancer? Well, soon you'll probably be hearing that your best friend is dying of pancreatic cancer. And if that's not bad enough, your dog will get run over, and your cousin will fall down the stairs and end up in a coma.

36. Realized my red Australia shirt is in with the dirty clothes. So I won't be able to do my optical illusion experiment.  I did find another Aussie shirt, though .It's a grey Manly one.

37. Started watching another episode of Neighbours.

38. Wanted to say that I think Imogen (Ariel Kaplan) is adorable. Maybe she's my favorite character on the show.

39. Wondered if my favorite male character is Toadie.

Yeah...I think he is.