En cours


December Shorts

Broadly defined as <250 words-ish. I guess a cop might call these drabbles but that word is kinda yucky to me.


How do you learn the constellations? People seem to know some major ones: Big Dipper, Little Dipper, Orion's Belt, Southern Cross. The true night sky holds such an expanse, we are tiny, we are beautiful. Absorb the information with eyes dilated wide, and invent new charts. Follow my finger as I trace a magpie, can you hear its warble too? I want to draw us there, this moment immortalised in nigh perpetual light. Does anyone need to remember our constellations? What if we made ourselves anew here, in their light? Our rebirth bathed in the glow of these newborn traditions.

Composed 2023-12-03. Another century, I really like the format.

DRAFT: deranged

grappling with maybe having depression? or 'girl you're not autistic but you're not neurotypical' (blair). or both.

I know it's a bit of a running joke among y'all, but I would not consider myself an impulsive person. There's this horrible thread of rationality that twists around it all, this vigilance, consideration, evaluation: am I acting correctly? Typically, this is not one regarding outside perception (I love playing wackamole against myself) but a selfish one. It's part utilitarian and hedonist, endeavouring to maximize my enjoyment and pleasure, but part future seeking. I so desperately want the future to be know. I consider all the probabilities, what is likely to happen and what isn't, free me from myself and my mind and let me be happy.



I've long since decided to stay here, among y'all (us), please. Why does the horrible fog descend whenever I am not occupied, why must I search for constant engagement to escape please I want to be present without suffering I want to exist without the end approaching I want to be without humanity.

not a short but!

DRAFT: australia posting

2023-08-27 23:07 UTC+12: The day before

When you're handed a two week break and very few obligations during it, you make the most logical decision: make some small commitments, have them fall through, and end up on google flights searching for the cheapest way to get away from Auckland. For me this happened last Wednesday (four days ago, 2023-08-23), finding a whirlwind route through Melbourne and Sydney, Australia, over four days. A requisite part is a train—the overnight route between the two cities, in fact, avoiding the cost of accommodation for that night, and a sudden realization the morning before that you booked your inbound flight on the wrong date. It isn't a huge fee to change, so you do it, but it sure is inconvenient.

You haven't understood the concept of backpacking; thinking that so many people were literally hiking around Europe instead of cheaply traveling around it. It's effectively what you're about to do, traveling with only a couple change of clothes and minimal toiletries, even using a tramping1 bag to pack and for travel. This will be fun.

However, you do have a 4am go time. Happy trails, camper.

2023-08-30 19:33 UTC+10: Basically done (SYD)

Holy shit. That went by really quickly (no shit girl). I know that I didn't really discuss this with anyone but I think this may have been too quick a glimpse, or maybe just enough to whet my appetite (spoiler alert: it was). Let's recap, because I didn't actually journaled the past two days (fairly, I think)

2023-08-28: Day 1 (MEL)

You wake up so early. Calling it waking up helps, but you didn't sleep. Your fitful lying in bed has been restful, at least, and now you're up, showered, dressed, fed (using the last of your perishable food), and in a taxi at 4:05 (UTC+12), wayy before your expected go time. You rock up, waddle through security as it opens, get the dilators inspected (as always) and recommended to put them in your checked luggage. You do not have any checked luggage. And then you're in the terminal. Then a plane. It is half empty—you are in the dividing row, before you is full, behind you is empty. And finally, you sleep.

Thick fog spreads over Melbourne as you descend. Your flight has been ahead of schedule, but the holding pattern means that you arrive perfectly on time. Australian customs is as easy as NZ's—it's all e-visa for you (wow magical international surveillance cooperation, I love five eyes <3 hi baby), but you bother a customs officer into giving you a stamp ~for the vibes~ and now it's here! You're out, freed in the waiting sidewalks of Melbourne International Airport. You begin your transit adventures: a bus to a train to a train to The Most Incredible, Pretentious, Tasty coffee you have every had at Disciple Roasters. It's a small garage, with a piece of tape across the floor separating the roastery from the 3 tables, espresso machine, and homemade earthware mugs and pourovers. You spend the most money for two coffees you have ever in your life, and you got two of the cheap ones. And now it's onto a tram to University of Melbourne campus, where you mooch off of their Eduroam wifi and bathrooms as you search for some food (you are highly caffeinated, very tired, and quite hungry. quite a combo). You have a bagel. It is fine. You are still hungry. You find a sandwich shop but shut that shit down (in ur belly mmmm yummy). You are full, and spot a museum with hosting Art at CERN, but it is closed today (remember this. it will be important. and even more important in three months). You take another streetcar (tram) downtown. You are starting to drag. You drop your camera in front of the National Gallery of Victoria, breaking its built-in lenscap, but it marches on (and so do you). Thank god for the free coat check at every museum you go to, freeing you from the burden of your own stuff. You like their impressionist paintings (Pissarro is always delightful) and their strong focus on design (you enjoy when museums have furniature on display, though you always wish you could interact with it and see just how comfortable those beautiful Bauhaus creations really are). You nearly fall asleep at a multimedia screening, but are awaken but someone snoring behind you. You collect your things and rest in a park.

You check into your room for the night. It's cheap as fuck (80AUD), and Not a Hostel (tm), just shared bathrooms, but you're pretty sure you pay your university nearly as much for a smaller bed + room and just the same amenities. You dilate (it has been 18 hours), and breathe. You are all alone in a big new country. Beyond that, you feel truly, meaningfully, alone, no longer deluding yourself pretending that the acquaintances you've made in NZ are thinking of you.

This is wrong, you missed something.

You write postcards, ask helpful staff at the station for paper maps of the transit system (girls love a good map), you remind yourself that there are people you love and those who love you and though you are far away it is okay. You are safe, you are warm, you are loved.

You have Thai food. It is really good. You listen to The Cool Aunt (or maybe their mom, but they speak so frankly) catch up with her niece and nephew, the intricacies of their grade 10 social dynamics. You walk to a wine bar, it is good, but quiet. Everyone else there is in pairs. The bartender plays some of the horniest music you've ever heard in a public place. You walk to another bar, the same story, though they do make a nice Fernet sour. You walk home lonely, and sleep for 10 hours.

2023-08-29 Day 2 (MEL)

You sleep in to 8. You shower (good water pressure, too, goddam), dress, dilate, and dart down to a cafe for breakfast before you have to check out. It's nice. Vaguely greek? You have a delicious soft cheese (maybe yoghurt?) and poached egg dish. They nearly forget your muffin, but you're very full and get it to go. You are filled with a sense of wonder (this new city is delightful) and a reminder that you are alone. You grab your stuff and decide to see a weird transit thing, but take your time. You walk through the Fitzroy Gardens, texting your parents and friends, stopping to identify the Australian Magpie (Gymnorhina tibicen), Magpie-lark (Grallina cyanoleuca), and Maned Duck (Chenonetta jubata) as you witness them. There's a train you've been thinking about catching (to see the aforementioned odd transit thing), but realise you would have to run to catch it, so you don't. As you meander towards Flinder's Street Station, you're stopped by a Little Raven (Corvus mellori) and give it a piece of that muffin you were too full to eat (but have been picking pieces off of while you've been walking all the same). It doesn't want to get that close to you, so you keep walking and see it gently hop over to eat it as you continue. You are filled with determination. As you walk by a tram2 stop, you see her: a class W tram (this isn't a joke I'm being genuine here). These are an icon of Melbourne, and after a day of confusing yourself of the exact vehicle you've been seeing you finally see a genuine Class W. It is majestic, a deep green and lots of wood. You run to the stop and manage to hop on. You understand why there are better and brighter trams than these, aside from the baseline (accessibility and efficiency): they are harsh, with unforgiving wooden benches and a jerky braking and acceleration system, jolting you as the driver shifts and responds to traffic. It is adorable. As the driver darts out at Parliament station (for a brief break?) you wait for a couple minutes, get impatient, and look at the car from the outside, and decide to begin on the transit journey of the moment.

You too, dart into Parliament station, delving deep down the many escalators, eventually making your way onto platform 4. But this isn't the Glen Waverly—this is a Lilydale (to Blackburn?)! You catch it anyways, deciding to transfer at Southern Cross (you want to scope out your future departure station, anyways). But wait! You get off the train, explore the station a bit, and find rentable luggage lockers! You needn't lug all your shit with you for the full day! This will have no future reprecussions! And then you dart back to the platforms, making up your mind to go see this weird transit thing, why not? You jump on the Glen Waverly to Kooyoung with a massive group of school boys (like genuine, real to life school boys. they all have the same preppy uniform), and see one of the two remaining at grade tram / train crossings (wow, look how the wires cross). You get a nice little custard donut from the bakery on the corner of the crossing, not knowing that a future friend lives a couple of blocks away. You cover yourself in powdered sugar as you sit waiting for your train back. It's nice, again, going back into the city, and you decide to walk around Flinders Street station, to see if you can find a transit-specific store (you don't). You take a tram up towards the University, and get a call that you weren't expecting: a coordinator from Restore Passenger Rail who helps you plan exactly what you're going to do for the rest of the break. As the rest of your arrangements have fallen apart (due to someone else's breakup), you decide to spend way more time in Wellington than you expected. After that, while it's on your mind, you call a friend you'd been planning that other trip with. You agree to maybe do something later (though this doesn't materialize). You linger on campus a bit (once again enjoying the free wifi and bathrooms) and head towards the Science Gallery, the place that's hosting Dark Matters with Art@CERN. The exhibit is so cool—they have a homemade muon detector (and instructions on how to make one yourself!). You get a little rizzed up by a gallery attendant and connect through your mutual love of transit (of course you do). You're getting along really well, but they have to do some work and you're Hungry. You get a lil snack, call a friend from home about it all—you've been here for so little time and so much has happened (i mean. you're reading *gestures* all this). You're still texting with the museum person, and end up going back to chat more, making plans to do dinner together when he gets off work while you decide to take his advice for a particular new transit adventure. this isn't done yet. still obvi a draft. still want to solicit y'alls input n feedback

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