Monday, 28 April 2014

My favourite "pump-up" songs

Sometimes, you're unmotivated.  You're down and out.  Suddenly, one of those songs comes on, the blood starts pumping, the belief comes back, you're just that little bit motivated to get up and keep going - and that's all you need.  Here are some of my favourite "pump-up" songs.

"Hello, Hooray" - Alice Cooper

Those first two notes set the tone for this song.  You sway along with Alices beautiful voice, feeling stronger and stronger until you get to the peak -


How do you NOT feel strong after hearing that?!

"All Hail Shadow" -Crush 40

That rockin' guitar, that tough beat, those awesome lyrics.  Nothing can stop you now, not when this is blasting out of the speakers!

"One of a Kind" - Breaking Point

You can see why Rob. Van. Dam. Uses this as his theme song.  The intro sets the tone - you know something's coming, and it's One of a Kind, loud and thrilling!


"Escape from the City" - Ted Poley

Ironically (given I escaped TO the city) this is my "theme song". From the first "WOO!" its fast pace makes you want to run and run and run at super-sonic speed while being chased by a G.U.N truck.

And finally:

The Brisbane Lions Club Song.

This song encompasses everything that I am, and everything that I ever will be - a Brisbane Lion.  Most of my friends are Lions, my cats are Lions (yes, I'm one of those sad people who gets pet memberships), my family are Lions and I have two Lions tattooed on me.

Although I prefer this version:

Friday, 25 April 2014

What a great day!

Got a lot of ground to cover today - what a blast!

First off, it's ANZAC Day.  Through all of the scandal that plagues our Defence Force in recent times, you can't ignore the fact that these people have put their hands up saying they're ready to die for this country.  They're willing to give up their futures, their hopes and dreams, family and friends, they're willing to stand in front of a gun and watch it disappear in the blink of an eye to protect Australia and her interests.  We all have a say in protecting this country, whether it's reporting something or someone suspcious, donating to institutions like Legacy or even signing up to the Military ourselves (I tried once and got told I was too immature...sigh).


Lions rise again!
Obiliterating everything that's not your friend!
Nothing can stop you now!
Riewoldt can't get you down!
When there's nothing left to lose,

SUPERMAN FLIES AGAIN!!!!!!! We won!!!!!!!!!!  At first I thought it would be another bad game from my sponsored player, but boy did Joel Patfull stand up!  I knew he would!  Trust me, the player that Joel is, this form will stick and he will be the 3-time Club Champ. Absolute legend.  I loved the ANZAC Guernsey too, shame you can't buy them.  LIONS FOR PREMIERS 2014!!!!!!!!!!! :3

Thirdly, I tried something new today - I went to my first live NRL game at Suncorp Stadium.  The atmosphere was a cross between a T20 Cricket match and a footy game - and very loud.  I'd LOVE to get 44, 000 people to the Gabba (well...yeah, good point, there isn't enough room).  For some reason though Suncorp felt smaller than the Gabba, a bit more intimate.  It was good to see the Rabbitohs get up over the Broncos too, while I won't be watching NRL on TV (because it's so fucking boring) I will definitely be seeing the Rabbitohs the next time they're in Brisbane.

And Norf won.  WTF?

(Interestingly this is my 24th blog post.  Huzzah for the number 24!)

Thursday, 24 April 2014


"What have you got to be anxious about?"
"Look at everything you have going for you!"
"Get over it!"

Anxiety can be a good thing in small doses.  That gut feeling you get when something isn't quite right, worrying about an exam, angsting over a problem - these will make you anxious, but the important thing is that anxiety should go away after the problem is resolved.

For some of us, it never goes away.

What are we anxious about?  Things that everyone else takes for granted - going to the shop, going to work, ringing someone on the phone, opening the door when someone knocks on it.

If you don't suffer from anxiety, you're probably wondering WTF? But if you can tell me how I can stop my heart rate from doubling every time I have to go to the shop, if you can stop my brain from releasing the chemicals that gives me the feeling of dread every time the boss calls me into his office (I can't even remember the last time I got in trouble) then please, tell me so these horrible feelings can stop.

No one has full control over their mind.  Everyone has a sub-conscious that seems to have a will of its own. And for some of us that means everlasting anxiety, depression and for some a complete lack of control of their own bodies. 

You can learn to manage it.  You can learn to breathe deeply and calmly to control your bodies reactions.  You can avoid situations that you know will make the situation worse.  You can learn to avoid substances like alcohol or caffiene which have a negative effect on your health.

But it's always there.  And it builds.  And builds.  At least a few times a week I overload.  It's nothing drastic, and I usually calm myself.  Sometimes overloads can even be enjoyable, like at the footy where I'm allowed to be fully Autistic and scream and cheer and jump and clap to my hearts content.  Everyone once in a while I'll have a panic attack, usually resulting in a day off work and me being rather upset. 

And then, maybe once or twice a year, I'll have a full-blown Autistic meltdown.  It happens when I'm at panic attack stage, and something minute that I've built up in my head goes wrong and suddenly I'm in trouble.

It hurts.  It feels like an andrenaline rush right under your skin, so painful that any contact will burn.  Touch me when I'm in this state and you WILL get bitten (and I have fangs, so watch out!).  It gets into your chest.  You can't breathe.  It's in your MIND.  You have to get it out.  You smash yourself against anything, you try and crack your own head open to try and relieve the pressure.  You're confused, scared and hurting.  And then after a minute or two of thrashing, smacking yourself, attacking anyone who comes near, you're out of energy.  And you can barely move.  This is the worst part as you can still feel the pressure, but now you don't have the energy to try and get some relief.  You're scared.  Eventually, it all wears off, you pick yourself up and you move on.

This isn't all in my head.  This is a very real physical problem I have.  That many people have.  It's not rational.  We feel these emotions whether they're warranted or not.  We can't change it anymore than we can change our DNA.  Please, I know a lot of people are well-intentioned, but as irrational as it is our anxiety is real.  Please don't invalidate it because the situation doesn't call for it.  Be there, hug us, talk to us, be calm for us. 

To everyone out there like me who suffers from Aspergers and anxiety (and even depression), this is for you.  It's hard, but we can all get through it.

Kind of explains why I love Sonic the Hedgehog so much really...

"If you have time to worry, then run!"

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

"A Solitary Blue" - Cynthia Voigt

The third book in Cynthia Voigts Tillerman Cycle is the first one I read, and by far my favourite.  As much as I like Dicey Tillerman, Jeff Greene interests me far more.

The book doesn't pull punches, and starts straight off with Jeffs mother, Melody, walking out on him as a seven-year-old.  What follows is Jeff learning to live with a father he never really identified with before (the Professor), learning about love, and most importantly, learning about who he is.  In the first part of the book, you don't get a sense of who Jeff is, which almost put me off the book.  He's a shadow in his own life, trying to hide himself, trying to be what everyone else wants him to be - out of the fear that if he doesn't, his father will leave him too.  The only time you get a glimpse of life from the boy is when he visits his mother one summer, but even then what you see isn't true.

Jeff really comes into his own in the second part of the book, after he decides his mother doesn't love him.  After withdrawing into himself more than ever, Jeff becomes someone.  He's a smart kid, a bit shy, a bit cheeky, who values his friends (Brother Thomas, Phil, Andy, Mina and especially Dicey and the Tillermans) and loves nature.  He's laid back (just like his father) and has a power about him where he can read peoples emotions (just like his mother). 

It's an interesting conflict.  At first glance, one might look at Melody as the antagonist and Jeff as the protagonist, but really, there is no antagonist or protagonist.  Jeff simply has to learn that there is a part of him that comes from his mother, and a part of him that comes from his father, and he has to reconcile those two parts of himself together.

It's also interesting how Jeffs implicit conflict compares with that of his future fiancĂ©, whose conflict is definitely explicit.  In the first Tillerman book, "Homecoming", Dicey and her three siblings James, Marybeth and Sammy, are abandoned by their mother and forced to walk from Provincetown, Massachusetts to Crisfield, Maryland to find family to take care of them.  In later books Dicey has to deal with more implicit conflict of her own, including having to deal with her siblings becoming more independant of her in "Dicey's song" (I hear you sister), but most of her conflicts are with what happens outside her - moving her siblings to her grandmothers home, dealing with new friendships at school, and her boating business ("Seventeen Against the Dealer").

I love Cynthias work, and I reckon every teenager/young adult should read her work, especially the Tillerman Cycle.

Monday, 21 April 2014

The most important job - being a big sister.

I am the older sister of three interesting (read: wacko) people: Adam, Meagan and Natalie.  It's something I take seriously, seeing as I have no older siblings of my own, which I would have loved to have had.  Imagine having an older sibling to drive you around, take you to the movies, go to the footy with, lend you copious amounts of money...let's face it, I tend to spoil my siblings when I get the chance.

Adam is the next in line after me, and he gets it pretty rough.  Mostly because he's a dickhead who has questionable taste in friends, but I guess some of it is bad luck.  But I will admit he's getting a lot better.  I remember visiting him when he lived in Melbourne.  Even though circumstances forced him back home, I was still so proud of him, and still am (hopefully he never EVER reads this blog).  While I don't ever see him giving up smoking (sigh) he's got his life mostly on track and I can only see things getting better for him (that hurt to type).

Meagan is next, and while we look nothing alike we used to be pretty close.  I guess me moving away to the big smoke has strained things somewhat, but she's still the only person I know who appreciates the word "pretentious" as much as I do.  She's also the most talented person I know - I can just see her as a backup dancer in a music video or on stage to some pop star someday. Her only real problem is that she can be a bit of a lazy cow, but other than that she'll be alright.

Lastly, there's Natalie.  I haven't known Nat very long, but I see so much of myself in her.  She's my only sibling who's also has Aspergers Syndrome, and I can almost see her running into many of the same roadblocks I have, such as a very overactive imagination, being a bit too trusting and friendly, being a bit hyperactive and a lack of social graces.  Hopefully though since she was caught and diagnosed early she might stand a better chance than what I did.

All three of them are pretty awesome and unique, and while we don't all have the same parents (some of them not even sharing any parents!) we're all pretty strong individuals...and all completely mental.

I love being a big sister!

Sunday, 20 April 2014

The Score Review System.

If the scums had lost today, especially by less than a goal, I reckon they would have had cause to despute the result.

The Score Review System that the AFL thought they were so smart bringing in is a complete and utter failure.  How many times has the umpire gone to the review, only for it to be sent back "Inconclusive - goal umpires decision".  WHAT WAS THE FREAKING POINT?! Especially, ESPECIALLY, as we saw in the demons/scums game, the umpire was WRONG, and it's plain with anyone who has half a brain cell.

It's almost as if they have some guy sitting up in his cushy little box thinking "Brill, free footy game!", when suddenly he gets summoned to do his job and it's like "Crap! Whatever, wait a minute and a half and then come back inconclusive, I can't be bothered making a decision."  It's not good enough.  There should NOT be an "inconclusive" option - the AFL should have taken the time and the effort to bring in a system that would be definitive and accurate.  If it meant more money for more cameras, then so be it.  If it meant trialling cameras in different positions around the goalposts and the ground, then so be it.  Bringing in this half-hearted bullcrap has only brought in more angst and speculation.

If you're going to do something, then do it properly.  Don't bring in something that only causes more problems.

In other news, my cat likes eating footy players.

Weird animal.

Saturday, 19 April 2014

"My Girl" vs "You Don't Love Me Anymore"

Driving back home to Oakey for my grandmothers birthday and Easter, I spent Friday morning sorting out a playlist for the trip.  Hitting "shuffle", I headed out west (ugh) and as I was passing through Minden the Hoodoo Gurus "My Girl" came on, followed by Weird Al Yankovics "You Don't Love Me Anymore".  I had to have a bit of a chuckle.  For those who haven't heard the songs, both songs are sung from the perspective of a male whose girlfriend has decided for whatever reason that it's time to move on.

"My Girl" by the Hoodoo Gurus

"You Don't Love Me Anymore" by Weird Al Yankovic

Weird Al's song is clearly meant to be humourous and light-hearted - it's Weird Al for pete's sake. However, there is a certain drollness to "My Girl" that makes you smile when you sing along.  Maybe it's the catchy, almost up-beat tune, maybe it's the tone or the simplicity of the lyrics.  Or maybe it's the fact that while Weird Als character sounds like he's heartbroken at the thought of his girlfriend not loving him anymore, Dave Faulkners character almost has a "Well, that sucks" vibe.  Sure, he talks about a girl taking "my love until I couldn't give anymore", but it still feels like he's not going to be throwing himself off a balcony anytime soon (and somehow by "love" I think he's referring to his paycheque). Dave sounds like he's simply been taken for a ride and while he's not happy, he's glad to be rid of her, whereas poor Al sounds like he's desperately clinging to this poor woman to his own detriment. 

Either way, they're both great songs and both are very interesting takes on the subject of breaking up - one song coming across rather silly but being more emotionally invested and the other coming across a bit more seriously but with a little less emotional attachment.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Being ill sucks.

My head feels like it weighs a tonne, my sinuses ache and I generally feel like poo.  Worst of all is that I can't get to work, and I feel like I'm letting my co-workers down, even though I'm probably doing them a huge favour by staying home and not infecting them.  My fever seems to have cooled off for now thankfully, and hopefully with a bit of luck I'll be able to get to work tomorrow.

I really wish though that more people would stay at home if they're ill - but with the way the world is, can they really afford to?  With jobs at a premium in this day and age, many people feel like they have to show up at work come hell or high water just to put a roof over their heads and food on the table.  While I know my manager would rather us stay at home and not put the entire team out of comission, I'm more than willing to bet there are a thousand managers out there who don't particularly care, and who put the pressure on their employees to work themselves to death.  A lot is made of work/life balance, but I think a lot of it is just talk.  Big fat-cat CEOs who only think of themselves and their paycheques are insisting that more get done with less, to hell with the price.  Hell, even in our company, we're now "resources".  NO, I am not a "resource", I am a human being with my own health, hopes, dreams, wants and needs, my co-workers are human with their own wants and needs, and it's time that people stepped back from their greed and realised that people are getting hurt.  But it won't change so long as there are a few in power who have control of the money that we mere mortals down below need to get by, because they certainly don't want to relinquish that power.

But for now, because someone felt that they had no choice but to travel while they were ill, I am now stuck in bed feeling sore and sorry for myself, and my co-workers are probably struggling to pick up the slack.  Life's not fair sometimes.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

My favourite book(s)

I love reading.  My two favourite books of all time are "Little Women" and "Good Wives", which are both usually lumped together under the "Little Women" title and are by Lousia May Alcott.  Most girls LOVE these books -they're well-written, they're romantic, and they're good to snuggle down with.  But they are also filled with lessons, many of which still apply today (remember Meg going to the Moffats? Jo nearly losing Amy because of her temper? Lessons about being true to yourself and not letting your temper get the better of you are lessons that most people would do well to remember today).  However, the thing I notice about the people who love these books (particularly the younger girls) are two things which I think are important to address:

1. They worship Jo and often discount her sisters.
2. They think Laurie and Jo should have been together.

Let's look at the first point.  All four March sisters are incredible women, who each had to grow into themselves and into the people who were fit enough to live out their hopes and dreams. Meg had to learn not to be so precious and to work hard, Jo had to learn to come down from the clouds and realise that she has duties and responsibilities, Beth had to learn courage to overcome her shyness, and Amy had to learn humility.

Meg was the oldest, and could still remember a time when her father was rich.  As such, she still yearned for the trappings of rich society, such as silks, servants etc.  She soon learnt that hard work is it's own reward, and married John, a man who would never be rich but who would keep Meg comfortable.  All Meg had to do was learn to pull beside him.

Jo was wild, stubborn and untamed.  She didn't gel well with other people, and it cost her a trip of a lifetime to the "Old Country" in Europe.  She had to learn to carry herself with dignity and grace, how to keep her temper, and how to interact with people.  She learnt these lessons so well that she not only became a better author, but became a teacher in her own Bhaergarten.

Beth was so shy she wouldn't even go to the Laurences to play the beautiful grand piano that she so longed to play until promises were made that she would never see anyone in the house.  While never become a social creature, she soon worked up enough courage to make old Mr. Laurence a beautiful pair of slippers which not only won her a piano of her own, but a dear friend she had all her life.

Amy was spoilt rotten, and would have been a snob if not for having to learn humility the hard way.  One of my favourite scenes is where she gets shafted by the Chesters at the fair.  What does she do? Turn the other cheek, and wins the respect of many.  She even gets to go to Europe because she has learnt to refine her manners so that she can still be polished without being stuck-up.

Each of the sisters has something special to offer us, and had their own demons to overcome.  So while I can understand where the Jo worship comes from, I think that by focusing only on Jo you lose the good qualities of the other three.

The second point is the Jo/Laurie pairing.  I'm sorry, but anyone who thinks these two were a good match is either a complete nitwit or has never experienced a relationship where you were too similar.  My ex and I were both prone to flash tempers, and anger tends to feed off anger.  It's easy to be scathing and mean when the person you are arguing with is also angry.  Next time I think I'll try and find a man who is more mellowed out and less prone to being angry - much like Jo and Laurie did.  Laurie found Amy, who was far too well-bred and classy to lower herself into an argument, and Jo found the Professor, who was too wise for a temper.

Just two things I have noticed about the fandom of my favourite book.

I was also looking at the team selection for the Lions game against Port on Saturday, and I was thrilled to see Nick Robertson listed.  I can't wait to see "Robbo" make his debut, hopefully his hardness at the ball is something that will translate from the NEAFL into the AFL - we desperately need it! 

Wednesday, 9 April 2014


I like blogging.  I've only been at it for a week or two but it's getting addictive.  I especially like going into my stats and seeing how many people take a look at my blog.  As you can probably imagine, it's not many people, but there's a constant 8 or so views every time I upload - I must admit getting to 28 views in one day was a bit of a surprise, but it made me start wondering.  If I could be bothered posting links to my blog posts everywhere instead of just Twitter (and I didn't feel like too much of a spam artist) I could make a little bit of pocket money from this.  I'm never going to get to the stage where I can live off blogging alone (and quite frankly, I don't want to) but a nice little $30-$50 a week wouldn't hurt me at all.

What's stopping me? Mainly what others would think - would people get annoyed by me constantly pointing to my blog in Bigfooty posts (more than likely)? Would my Twitter followers think I sold out?  What if my views don't improve?  I don't really have much consistancy in the subjects of my blog posts, one minute I'm ranting about my passion in footy (at least once a week) and other times I'm talking about society issues and pumping up my favourite tourist destinations.  Plus there's the fact that most people nowadays insist on using ad blocking software.  I do sometimes, but for sites I respect like That Guy With The Glasses I turn it off - I really enjoy Doug Walkers work and for him to continue his work he needs to get revenue in from advertising on his site. I also do it for Youtube, as content creaters such as JWittz and Johnny of the Super Gaming Bros. earn money from the site and I LOVE the content they create, and would hate to lose them.

This day is also a sad one, with the loss of the Ultimate Warrior James Hellwig.  It was only yesterday I was watching him on RAW in what would be his last ever promo.  Rest in Peace Warrior.

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Mining and Australias Natural Beauty

I was talking to my good mate Garry (with two "R"s) at work today and subject turned to one of my favourite places in the world - the Bunya Mountains.  Seriously, if you haven't been to the Bunyas you need to go.  My favourite place there is easily the Dandabah Picnic Area and Camping Ground, with its cute little corner store, museum, resturant, lolly shop and easy access to most of the walking tracks through the beautiful rainforest.  It's like something out of a Final Fantasy game (VIII and/or IX if you want to be specific).

Surrounding the Bunyas is gorgeous, scenic countryside, dotted with trees, homesteads,'s an amazing trip.  Except for one thing - mining.

If you go the back way out of Oakey past the Army Base and towards Maclagan and Quinalow, it's a much easier and more enjoyable drive if you can just ignore the whooping big eyesore that is the Acland Coal Mine.  If you go via the dreadful Warrego Highway, you get to go through the very interesting Jondaryan - with whooping big hills of coal piled up ready to be shipped back through Oakey.  UGH!

Now don't get me wrong, I understand that mining creates jobs and brings money into a community.  But imagine you're walking home from work one day, and as you walk under the bridge a great big coal train barrels past, spewing dust from its uncovered load of coal (I bet that's doing everyones lungs wonders).  Imagine you're a farmer, fighting with these mining companies to keep land that's more than likely been in your family for generations, and that you've worked so hard to maintain.  Imagine you're the cops, arresting a miner who's gotten pissed with his huge wage and started a fight with the locals.  Mining could be a great thing for the small town of Oakey and its surrounds, but the mining companies aren't doing their bit.  The roads that their miners use to get to work are still rubbish, they refuse for some stupid reason to cover their loads (how hard would it be to throw a tarp or something over it?!) and they leave horrid eyesores all over the once magnificent countryside.  I'm sorry, but I can't support mining in the Darling Downs.

In other news, once-Lion now demon Mitch Clark has announced his retirement.  I really feel for the bloke and his issues with injury and mental illness.  Hopefully he can get himself back on his feet and start to enjoy life again.  Puts this mornings scare into perspective a bit.

If you want to visit the Bunya Mountains, information can be found here and here.  Please don't be put off by the mines, the fact is once you get past them then it's a gorgeous drive, plus towns like the aforementioned Maclagan and Quinalow are interesting stops too.

When your brain won't listen

You might notice the time I've posted this (then again, I don't really pay attention to how Google timestamps these things) is 4.30ish in the morning.  "WTF are you doing up blogging that early?" you might ask.

Because I have just spent the last half an hour in terror.  In that horrible little zone between sleep and being awake, when my sub-conscious is still active and boy is my sub-conscious freaky.  I suppose it's my own fault, yesterday I watched a creepypasta vid (seriously, who the fuck thinks these things up? You should be ashamed of yourself!), plus was showed a "Every death from Game of Thrones in 10 minutes" video (and I never watch GoT for a very good reason) and my brain is probably still digesting it, but when you want to think of pleasant things but your mind can only churn up freaky red eyes and sharp teeth it's scary.  I was too terrified to close my eyes, even though I'm exhausted and can barely keep them open now.

There are people in this world who just can't do scary stuff, and I'm one of them.  Unfortunately there are people who see this as cowardice and who will probably have a good laugh at my expense - I hope they NEVER have to spend the half an hour I just did, trapped in my own mind which had turned against me.  Which is why when I was able I turned on my lamp and have spent a good 15 minutes watching footy videos.  I'm SO going to be a zombie at work today.

Sonic's really the only creepypasta I can handle, mainly due to the fact that
he's my hero and my brain simply cannot compute that he could be scary...
unless you steal his chilli dogs.

Monday, 7 April 2014

I was born on a Monday

This morning on the train to work I was listening to the AFL favourite "Hunters and Collectors", more specifically a song that embodies the hope and passion of our beloved sport.  The lyrics at the end made me feel like there was hope, and that these past three games were just an aberration.

                         I followed orders.
                         God knows where I'd be.
                         But I woke up alone,
                         All my wounds were clean.
                         I'm still here.
                         I'm still a fool for the Holy Grail.

We're all still here.  We're all still fools for the great Brisbane Lions, and they're still fools for Premiership Glory.  They won't give up so easily, and nor should we.

Of course, then the rest of Monday happened.

First off, the Undertakers Wrestlemania Streak was ended by Brock Lesner, who IMO is the LEAST deserving person to end it.  It should have been the new creepster Bray Wyatt who did it if it was going to be done at all, and then the Deadman could hand over the mantle.  But no.

Secondly was Dan Rich and his ACL.  Like I said yesterday - FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  We really didn't need that, and neither did he.  But "Bam-Bam" is a tough little cookie, hopefully he'll come back bigger and better than ever.  Of course, we now have a gaping hole in the middle of our already woeful team, and things aren't looking very bright for the Lions.

And just to put the cherry on the cake, Mickey Rooney passed away.  RIP Mickey, you are and always will be an acting legend.

It wasn't all bad news, it looks like the Big Sauce Dan Merrett is only going to get two weeks for his stupidity on the weekend (personally I would have given him 3, but we all know how pissweak the MRP are) so we shouldn't be in that much pain for too long.  Still, I have no idea how our backline is going to function, given that thanks to our dopey midfield they're already under more pressure than the Titanic. But miracles do happen, so I'm not about to write my boys off just yet.

Plus although one of my snow pea plants was stunted, it still tasted pretty good!

Although I did listen to another song on the way home today by Tears for Fears...

                   There's a room where the light won't find you,
                   Holding hands while the walls come tumbling down....

Friday, 4 April 2014

Men's Health - Why don't they do something about it?!

Saw this on Twitter today (I love George Takei):

And I immediately face-palmed.  That graffiti is a symptom of an illness - a stigma where men will NOT take care of their health, thinking they'll be OK

Us women have it pretty good.  We've managed to organise plenty of awareness for things that plague us like cervical cancer and breast cancer, and raise a lot of money towards research and caring for the sick.  What do men have? Movember.  That's all I can think of.

For crying out loud boys, you're more likely to commit suicide, you're more likely to have heart and bowel problems, and we won't go into prostrate cancer, why aren't you boys banding together like us women have done and start raising awareness?  For crying out loud girls, why aren't we kicking their arses into gear?!  We're talking husbands, fathers, brothers, sons, friends, that could be taken down by any number of problems, and it's a battle and a half just to get them to a doctor sometimes!  The thing that REALLY shits me is the number of males I see commenting on the Internet saying "Where's our day for our cancers?" WHY AREN'T YOU OUT THERE MAKING ONE?!

You know what?  I'm going to start.  So, to my brother, fathers, and other male relations - from now on for your birthday I'm paying for you to have an annual check-up.  You are getting nothing else, you're just having me pay for you to go on a trip to the doctor.  Especially my Dads, who are both in their 40s/50s and need to start looking out for looming health problems.  What do you say girls?  They can't really refuse if it's a birthday present - and for older males particularly, it could save their lives.

Now that I'm done ranting, it's on to a team I like to call the Scums.  They're that plastic mob down the road on the Gold Coast, and they like to try and big-note themselves.  Last year it was having a picture of Daniel Rich on their website that had been defaced, now they're running Facebook competitions to caption a picture of a Lion with its paw across its face.  Seriously, they shouldn't be starting crap they can't finish, and the REAL war is fought on the footy field, not on social media.  If you want to be Queenslands Team, you need to grow the fuck up.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Domestic Violence and why victim blaming is ridiculous

This post goes out to two of the strongest women I know - my best friend "sister" Emma and her mother Rhonda.  For years they have been fighting against the terror and the stigma of domestic violence, trying to raise awareness and provide hope with their annual Butterfly Ball (held in honour of Emma's late aunt Noelene)

For anyone not aware, click here to read about Joe Hildebrands comments on Studio 10 this morning.  What disturbs me is the comments on the story, the two themes that really stick out are:

"Why do women get into these relationships?"
"Why do women stay? Surely if they want to protect their children they'll leave!"

The answer to the second one is so simple I can't believe that the nongs asking it don't see it - they're staying because they're afraid that if they leave, the abuser will take revenge using the children.  Luke Batty is only one example.  What about poor Darcey Freeman, whose father threw her off the Westgate Bridge?  Or poor Jai, Tyler and Bailey, whose father drove them into a dam and drowned them?  If the abused (male or female) try to leave, they risk their children being hurt or killed in retaliation.  It's the perfect way to keep the abused under the abusers control.

So how do women get into these situations in the first place?  I'm sure we've all heard of the boiling frog, you put a frog into boiling water it will jump right out, but put it in cool water then let the water slowly heat and the frog will boil to death?  An extremely simplistic way of looking at it really.

Abusers probably don't set out to abuse.  The unfortunately reality is they have dreams too, and the only way they see their dream coming true is by controlling another human being.  They equate "control" with "love" which is just not true at all.  I'm not trying to excuse or pardon them, but I'm trying to show how easy it is to fall into abusive habits - anyone can abuse.  Someone can appear friendly and kind, but as you get to know them they slowly start to try and control you.  Abuse is one form of control and it's easy to do - I should know, I am guilty of abusive behaviours myself.

I am an extremely jealous person, and I pine for those I get attached to when I'm not with them.  100% my problem to deal with, but in my last relationship I didn't.  I took it out on my ex by making accusations and trying to make him miserable while he was away because I felt miserable, and I felt that he didn't love me if he was able to have fun and be happy away from me.  I had no right to try and bring him down, it was me trying to control him through abuse and I'm ashamed of how I behaved. 

"Oh, we all make mistakes."  Yes, we do.  And we're willing to forgive others for their mistakes.  But abusers learn how to make little mistakes that on the surface are forgivable, but slowly erode the confidence and esteem of the victim, and then escalate to keep the abused under control.

Everyone is capable of being abused, and everyone is capable of being an abuser, and many people can be both at the same time.  The way to fix this is not to blame the victim for getting into the mess in the first place, or not being strong enough to escape the situation, but to educate, educate, educate! Model behaviours that you believe to make good, strong relationships, try to weed out any behaviours you know you are guilty of (and all of us have them!), and if you see someone in a bad situation, be there for them - you could save the lives of innocent children.

Domestic violence affects all of us.