adulthood: why the heck?

I’m an adult. Apparently. Somebody, somewhere, at some point in history, decided that being 18 makes me an adult. I guess I’m lucky I missed the ‘married-with-children-at-14-before-dying-of-the-common-cold’ window, but I’m still disillusioned.

Studying to be an educator has taught me one thing: we are putting bigger children in front of smaller children and hoping that the smaller ones turn into fully functioning humans within a few years because somebody taught them how to find the area of a triangle. This is a big joke. I am a big joke. Is anything real? What is the meaning of life? Why does looking at yoghurt make me feel weird?

Almost nothing has changed since I turned 18. I now have to give the government like $40 in taxes because I make no money, and I get to vote in a bullshit postal plebiscite on marriage equality. What a life.

I’m not even taking advantage of the fact that people expect my demographic to party. I get brunch once a week and go to the fricking library. A few weeks ago I got a 30 cent fine. That’s as wild as my life gets.

So what makes me an adult?

Is it just, like how many days you’ve been breathing because I don’t think that’s fair. Your body does that for you. Just because my heart has been beating for longer than someone else’s doesn’t make me more educated or more capable.

OH MY GOD. Is life like a video game? Like, with each year you get more XP and level up and then at 18 you, like, unlock all of the things. Then you get to go wild for like 5 years and then you just have to grind until you die. Well, that train of thought made me feel better.

Humans are weird. We create all of these rules that don’t really exist or come from anywhere. Don’t get me wrong I’m glad that society exists and doesn’t, you know, completely collapse, but where do some of them come from? It’s so odd.

 

We follow them too. Like one person was like “marriage is like a dude and a chick” and now people are like “THIS CONCEPT IS SACRED AND MUST BE PROTECTED GET YOUR FILTHY MITTS OFF MY ABSTRACT CEREMONIAL RITUAL THAT INVOLVES HAVING A NIGHT TO CELEBRATE YOUR FREEDOM ONE LAST TIME LIKE WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU THIS IS ABOUT COMMITMENT AND LOVE LIKE WHY ARE YOU SAD AND WEIRDLY YOU SHOULD HAVE SOMETHING BLUE ON YOU SO THAT EVERYTHING DOESN’T GO TO SHIT OH NO HE SAW YOU IN THE DRESS NOW NANCY IS GOING TO GET PLASTERED AND SIT ON THE CAKE RICHARD”.

Full disclosure I have no idea what that was and I think that it’s for the best if we never talk about this again.

So, yeah, like most of society’s rules I don’t understand adulthood. In three years they’re putting me in charge of the future of the world (Children. I’ll be teaching children. I’m not becoming President of the world. That’s a good idea actually. President Tara: Dabbing since it stopped being cool.) and I am literally still a child, except that people say that I’m an adult. I am not eloquent expressing my point but when do I ever.

People my age are getting married. They’re having sex. Actually, that’s pretty normal, I am just not doing that so it seems very mature (though I presume it’s mostly just messy?). They understand taxes. I still don’t understand how tax returns work. Why are they returning our tax? Don’t they, like, need that? For things??

Anyway, I am 1000% convinced that adulthood is a scam and a myth so let’s never call me an adult okay. I’m just a jumbo-sized child human. Thanks and good night to all of you people that don’t read my blog (and those that do, but like who are you and why are you here?).

 

 

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how not to handle human rights: a lesson from down under.

Most people would know that Australia is running a non-binding voluntary postal survey on marriage equality (Yes, it is as stupid as it sounds). As someone who is mostly closeted and has only recently dismantled the many layers of denial and self-loathing necessary to even let myself identify with the bisexual label, I have some things to say.

This plebiscite is useless. It’s non-binding. So it’s basically a glorified Facebook survey run by a bunch of 14-year-olds about which High School Musical movie was the best (the answer is Senior Year. Fight me.). The government doesn’t have to do anything either way with the result. Nothing has to change.

This plebiscite is a waste of money. It’s costing the Australian government $122 million.  One ! Hundred! And! Twenty-Two! Million! Doll-ahhhhs! Do you know how much it costs to make a fricking decision in parliament when that’s your mother fricking job? NO DOLLARS. That $122 million-fricking-dollars could be used to help fund education, healthcare, transport, public services or any number of clearly far more important things. Heck, it could be used to fund diverse and inclusive sex-education or create safe spaces for LGBT+ youth. Instead, I’m writing this post, so…..

This plebiscite is being used to stall. The government has been avoiding this conversation and we’re at the point where so many other countries have done this that Australia really needs to make a change. Unfortunately, this is a discussion that most of the government doesn’t feel like having. It’s like they’re two teenagers who know that their dog took a shit on the floor and are just not talking about it or making eye contact because they figure if they wait long enough their parents will clean up for them.  They’re buying time, trying to find an excuse to say no. It’s cowardly.

Most of all, this plebiscite is so fricking offensive. These last few months my mental health has been worse than it has been in a long time. I’ve been pushed further into the closet. I am more fearful than ever that my country has no place for me.

I don’t consider myself a weak person. In fact, I would say I’m pretty strong. Weather the storm and so on. This plebiscite has shaken me more than I ever felt possible. My anger and frustration, the usual reactions to utter bullshit of a similar variety, were replaced with a pain in my chest and a rock in my stomach. This was new. I had no idea how to process this. It’s part of the reason that I’ve been very absent. It’s hard to think straight (haha because I’m not) when you feel completely empty.

This whole situation has shown a complete and utter disregard for the well-being of others. It has created opportunities for people to voice their hatred and ignorance loudly and publicly to the detriment of others. Look, I get that it’s ‘free speech’ or whatever, but it’s not nice that this creates platforms for crazy people to spread fake news, okay? Okay, good.

To others who feel hurt deeply by the way that their country is putting human rights to a popular vote: I am sorry. You deserve better. Just hold on.

To all the people who have had to hear family and friends spew homophobic nonsense: They’re wrong. You’re amazing as your true and authentic self.

This bullshit will have a lasting impact on the LGBT+ community in Australia. We will feel this pain for a long time. We may gather together in our rainbow gear and hold up signs and remind our friends to vote, but this disrespect and the toxic environment of othering is really hurting us.

I hope that we win this. I hope that marriage equality passes in Australia. To entertain the idea of the alternative is altogether too painful.

This post is a little out of character for me. Usually, when I talk politics I like to pretend I’m a late night TV host but I just can’t turn on the Colbert or the Corden tonight. Maybe someone will see this post and feel a little less alone. Maybe not. Regardless, this was something that I felt I had to say.

weird things customers have said in my bookshop #6

This story comes straight from the mouth of my manager.

So, a customer comes in and asks if we have “I Am Malala”. He takes the woman down to the section and says that there is the teen edition and the normal one.

She responds, “Oh great. So I can borrow these then?”

“Um, no. This isn’t a library.”

“So I have to buy them?”

“Yes.”

“Oh, maybe I’ll think about it then. I didn’t know I had to buy it.”

 

silver stars by michael grant – a review.

When is the sequel better than the first? When it’s Silver Stars. That’s when.

I fugging love this series. See what I did there? I’m so funny and relatable. This is the second book in an alternate WWII YA series which follows a series of diverse female protagonists through their war experiences. I reviewed the first book here. The second book follows our girls; Rio, Frangie and Rainy, as the allied forces move into Sicily and then Italy.

I won’t say too much because of spoilers, duh. But I will say that this book topped the first which I didn’t think was possible. I love these characters. Michael Grant has a way of drawing you into the action. This is about as close to a war movie in book form as you can get. Like, most of the characters should be dead by now but I don’t care because I’m sure as hell happy that they’re alive. Well, the one’s that still are. That’s not a spoiler, it’s a war book, people die in wars.

The series isn’t always realistic. Like, most of the characters should be dead by now but I don’t care because I’m sure as hell happy that they’re alive. Well, the one’s that still are. That’s not a spoiler, it’s a war book, people die in wars. The ending was a little obvious but I loved it anyway so I’m not going to complain about it. That’s silly. My girls. Ah.

Rainy took on a much larger role in this book which was awesome to see. Even if I need to have serious words with Mr. Grant about the emotional turmoil that he puts me through as I read these books. It’s honestly not okay. I cried a lot reading this book. It isn’t even particularly sad, I just want to give everyone a hug and let them take a long nap, but alas, I am powerless to protect my children.

It isn’t very often that one comes across a YA book that makes you say ew. That doesn’t shy away from the reality of violence. The most you usually see is a little blood. Michael Grant makes you see how awful war is. He makes you feel it. I love him for it.

Honestly, this series that I picked up for a bit of a meme, just waiting for Grant to fail, has become one of my favourite series. Good job, Michael Grant, for making a YA novel that is bold and diverse, raw and honest. That doesn’t shy away from violence and sex. It’s pretty great.

One complaint. I am not Strand or Jack, and that is just simply not acceptable. Please fix this as soon as possible.

i demand a formal apology.

I have been LIED to. 

Who in the hell was telling me that university is easier than high school? Well, not easier, but that you have way more free time? I want a written apology from every single individual who threw these untruths at me. I want them to get down on their knees and apologise because that is NOT THE CASE HOLY HELL BATMAN.

I’ve seen my boyfriend less than I did in year 12. I have seen my friends once? In 6 months? Um. This is not okay. This is rude. I need someone to tell me that it gets easier. Can someone do that? I’m in a friggin education course. I should not be this busy. I don’t even have hobbies. I’M NOT IN ANY CLUBS. WHAT IS HAPPENING.

Despite this, I am delusional telling myself that Semester Two will be, like, way easier and I’ll have my life together again. Which I totally will. Right? Right? Please, somebody, tell me that I’m right.

Where did this lie come from? Is this so that we work harder in high school? Or, am I the only one that thought this? Am I crazy? I’m crazy, aren’t. Great. Who am I even talking to?

Okay. Brief rant to nobody on the internet done. Back to cramming.

 

 

i finally went to a rally.

A bisexual freaks out a little.

Let’s be honest, it was only a matter of time before I went to a rally. I think I may just be a little too passionate and a little too politically minded to spend my life sitting at home and not standing up for what I believe in. My parents wish I would chill.

It case you aren’t aware, same-sex marriage is not yet legal in Australia. Which is more than a little bit dumb and unfair. Many of my friends would disagree. A lot of them think that being gay is a choice and that marriage is a sacred thing between a man and a woman. They were raised to believe that, and I suppose since they aren’t opposing gay marriage in the streets with little signs I should probably be content with that. They are my friends, and I love them, even if we don’t agree.

Since starting university though, and meeting people outside the community of my conservative Christian high school, I have felt far more comfortable being myself. I’m bisexual. I just said that. On the internet. There are the words, written down for the first time since I scrawled them in my journal and pasted coloured paper over them so that no one could see them. For somebody is is 100% for people unapologetically being themselves, I am 100% for me being what I think other people want me to be. I’ve come out to a couple of fellow LGBT+ people that I have met in my first semester of uni, but the only person that I knew 6 months ago who knows now is my amazing boyfriend of two years. And he worked it out for himself.

Being bisexual is particularly scary for me when it comes to my amigos because I know that they’ll think that it’s a choice. Especially because I have a boyfriend. I have to be straight right. For a very long time, I thought that I was. I thought that when I adored female characters I wanted to be them. Spoiler: I didn’t. Everyone I knew was straight or at least said they were, in my small little world. I didn’t want to be the outlier. Especially in an environment that would not be pleasant for an LGBT+ person. People for the last couple of years thought I was playing gay a little for the LOLZ but I was just being myself. If you say something astoundingly bisexual and laugh after it people will just assume that you’re kidding.

Being at university brought me the opportunity to go to my first marriage equality rally and it wasn’t until a few days before it that I remembered that no one knows. I wore black jeans and a dark shirt because, honestly, a part of me thought that I might see someone that I know protesting the rally. No one protested the rally. But the fear was there.

I know people who think that “love the sinner hate the sin” is reassuring. That they’ll love you but just hate a fundamental part of you, and I’m not okay with that. I don’t think that that’s possible. Those words stung. Every homophobic remark or anti LGBT+ comment hurt, and for so long I didn’t even realise why. I’m the ‘B’ in that group that you’re saying shouldn’t be allowed to marry a same-sex partner, or have children, or have proper sex education. The ‘B’ was sitting at the table with them, too afraid to put the label on myself because I was scared of losing everyone that I care about. That’s probably not giving enough credit to my friends. They are kind and wonderful people, I love them deeply, and bless their hearts they do try. I’ve seen so much growth. Just not enough to feel secure.

Marching down the street surrounded by rainbows I felt that I was finally with people like me, and it was marvellous.