Five years

I’ve been writing this blog for five years now.
I’ve struggled to write something which does justice to what this blog has meant to me. So instead I have decided to let the achieve speak for itself.
Compiling this post involved trawling through every single one of the 265 posts on Adventures in TV-Land. It was strange and wonderful and so emotionally draining. I don’t think I’ve ever really stopped to think about this blog as a portrait of me. It shows (possibly more accurately than I would like) who I am. More comfortingly, it shows how I got to be that person. Shifting through the posts, I remembered a lot of things that I’d forgotten.
Thankyou to all the people who have read this blog over the years. Another thing I realised doing this, is that there is a big overlap on the Ven Diagram of people who read my blog and people who have shaped the person I am.
Anyway, this is me.
2010
March
The first job I ever had was as a staff writer on Good News Week. I was sixteen, had just started Year 11 and I’d never even had a job at Coles. When I was offered a trial spot on the new and improved Good News Week it was a dream come true. Being paid to write jokes must be a million times easier than swiping groceries, right?
Full post – Stress
May
The offices of GNW-TV are smaller than I remembered them. They are darker. Slightly more dodgy. A bit grubbier. None of which detracts from the magic of the place. It is a place where the cupboard doors are split at a diagonal. Where swear words are normal and champagne appears inexplicably at lunch time on Thursdays. It is a place where the printer is in a telephone box.
Full post – Welcome back
September
On the first night we climbed the mast. That’s 35 metres. AKA- very, very high. Of course you’re harnessed on – that’s a bit of rope and a weird metal thing standing between you and an impossible drop onto a solid wooden deck. It was a weird kind of fear. A primeval, subconscious physical kind of fear. Dangling high above a swaying ocean, clinging for dear life to the most solid thing I could find, my whole body was gripped by intense, uncontrollable panic.
September (still)
I find Newcastle a bit odd. Walking down Hunter Street on my way to Staple Manor I’m slightly over whelmed by the number of young trendy people. I come from Grafton… and therefore I find the coolness level almost intimidating. There are traffic lights and interesting shops and water that comes with a verbal warning. Welcome to NYWF 2010. 
Full post – Pleased to meet you
2011
July

Someone does, eventually, ask me how old I am.
“Nineteen,” I say “Almost twenty.”

…It’s as though being one year older might make people respect me more. It might make me feel more at home in these foreign situations. It might make me appear more grown-up. Later that night, staring at a dark, strange ceiling I find myself wondering when I’ll stop being “almost”. It occurs to me, quiet suddenly, that maybe that age is twenty.
Full post – Almost something else
August
2- Always take a whisk to a party.
August (still)
On Friday we race wind-up daleks on my pool table. The little metallic figures judder across the green felt and I’m struck for a moment by how nice life is. We make Pan Galactic Gargle Blasters and decide the recipe needs perfecting and the olive is easily the worst part. My house-warming and my friends manage literally to raise the temperature of my cold little house.
Full post – We
September
There are people out there who believe in me. Real, wonderful, amazing people who believe that I can do anything… You have inspired me to be a braver, more confident, BETTER person. Sometimes you are the difference between “I think I shall stay at home and drink tea” and “No dammit I can DO this.”
Full post – Thankyou
December
The place I moved to wasn’t home. Sure I called it home. I lived there. But, like that tiny hostel room, it never really felt that way. I was living in a tiny brick box in on-campus accommodation. I plastered the walls with pictures and posters. I filled the tiny bookshelf. I littered the desk with work and plans and letters. But despite my best efforts I never really liked living there… I only called it home by default.
Full post – Home
2012
April
The man at the entrance barely glances our way as we walk in and take the elevator to the top floor. The sloping concrete is completely devoid of cars and the barriers are only waist high. We walk to the back and lean over. It’s windy today and up here, the breeze has become a proper gale. If I stand still the fabric in my dress billows out and it’s like we’re in the 1800s and I’m wearing hoops.
“I’m not afraid of heights,” I say, looking at the alleyway far below, “But I am kind of afraid of falling.”
Full post – The 47th floor
May
I don’t think I believe in fate but I do believe in chance. Chance, is meeting someone at a McDonalds or a bookshop or a BBQ you almost didn’t go to. Chance is wearing the right shirt on the right day and having a conversation with someone as a result. Fate is believing these things happen for a reason. Chance is accepting that they just happen and that’s precious. We have to cling onto them when they do.
June
A lot of people don’t get along with their siblings. I’ve never really worked out why that is. For one thing, it’s in your interest to keep siblings on side in case you ever need a kidney. And you never know when you’re going to need a kidney.
Full post – Fin
July
This weekend was my 21st birthday. There was tea and cake and friends and family. It was strangely like a highlights package, having our backyard full of all these people from my life. If you can judge your life based on the people in it, then I think I’ve done alright. I think finally, after almost 21 years, I’ve grown into my age. I feel like I’ve outrun childhood. And adulthood is something I can stumble into later.
Full post – 21
October
Given the choice, I’d mostly prefer to stay at home and watch TV and eat ice cream. I prefer parties that only five people attend. Sometimes I like to stand in the corner and just watch. I learnt an awful lot about myself and about other people last year, when I was forcing myself to be brave. I’m just starting to realise that being shy can be a choice. I’ve said yes – I’ve been to some parties and drunk goon with Germans. And that isn’t who I am. I like meeting strangers sometimes. But sometimes I’m content to just watch the strangers dance.
Full post – Yes
2013

March
Looking back, those afternoons were really important. I choose yoga basically every semester that it was offered, long after my friends stopped doing it with me. It was probably one of the first times I learnt that it’s better to be alone and happy than with friends and trying to hit baseballs.
Full post – Yoga
April
To give you an idea of the kind of household ours is, let me explain our system for making tea. There are three steps. The first person puts the jug on and puts sugar (or honey) into the mugs. The second person puts teabags in and fills the mugs with boiled water. The third person puts in the milk and carries the mugs to the lounge room. This system means that no one person misses too much TV while the tea is being made. Feel free to adopt it in your own home.
Full post – Living not-alone
September
On that first day, as he was showing me around, he asked me to make this house happy again. I wonder occasionally if I would feel differently about this place if I didn’t know its story. For the first six months, when I lived here alone, there were traces of that story, remnants left in the cupboard and on shelves. After a while I boxed them away. My brother moved in and we filled the walls with our own pictures. We made this house our own. And I hope that we made it happy.
Full post – Coming home
October
Late that night, at the sea baths I walk in the rock pools and tiny phosphorescent organisms scatter from my footsteps. Their trails are like tiny blue-green stars fizzing across the surface of the dark water. All around me there are squeals of delight as people stamp in puddles and watch the glittering trails that the ripples create. The reflection of the real stars is almost as pretty and the two mingle in the black, black water of the sea baths.
Full post – Sunday
October (still)
Rachel and I sat on the swings, flinging ourselves higher and higher to the rhythmic creaking of the hinges, oddly like the sounds of a ship. We both said that the motion was making us queasy (not surprising given the amount of food we’d eaten) but we continued to swing, looking out over the mangroves and the creek and the houses on the other side. The light was almost gone but the faint orange glow of the streetlights trickled down into the water.
Full post – Sunday afternoon
2014

January
Driving back to Newcastle on the weekend, I suddenly realised that I’m moving an awfully long way away from my family. Going home isn’t something I could do in a weekend any more. And there’s that word again: “home”. Already I’m struggling with it again because another city is about to earn the title and I’m not really okay with that yet.
Full post – Pictures on the walls
April
Last Wednesday, walking down Swanston Street holding a balloon, I was happy. It reminded me why I’ve spent the last two and a half weeks without sleep or proper food, why I’ve seen thirty-eight shows in nineteen days. I love comedy because of that moment of euphoria after a truly excellent show. It makes you feel invincible. For a moment it’s possible to imagine that you’ll never be sad again, that happiness is the only emotion that you have the capacity for.
Full post – Red balloon
August
A while ago I started getting pins and needles in my hands and feet. The feeling caused me to panic, which made the sensation worse, which made me panic. At the time it didn’t occur to me that pins and needles could actually be a symptom of panic. When I arrived in her office, shaking viably, my doctor took one look at me and wrote a referral to a physiologist. Turns out pins and needles are a fairly common symptom of anxiety. Turns out I’ve had anxiety basically forever. Turns out it helps when someone tells you that’s what’s wrong.
August (still)
Since moving to Melbourne we go out more and people come over less. We have limited space and limited chairs, so we’re always cautious about how many people we invite at any given time. My oven is a lot smaller. I left my industrial sized lasagna dish in Newcastle. There’s a lot of factors. But pasta bake for eight is something I’ve only made once or twice since we moved. 
Full post – A quart of sherbet
November
I may have, as a result, spent some time falling apart. I’ve debated whether or not to include this part. You’re seeing behind the curtain (literally in this case since there was only a curtain separating me and my breakdown from a room full of people). Maybe there’s something to be said for keeping that curtain drawn. But at the same time I don’t really know how to write around this moment. It doesn’t feel right to leave it out. 
Full post – Behind the curtain

Further reading

December – home

I spent the first minutes of 2018 on the beach. I’ve never actually spent New Year