“None of this angriness, show us your girlie bits”
– Ali Barter
A twenty-six-year-old, kitchen-hand, who is clearly bi-curious, yet self-denying, had already started conducting his own ‘elaborate’ ploy, to uncover which ‘team’ I batted for.
In my last piece, a self-indulgent, somewhat audacious attempt at making satirist political commentary, in a faux sense of unfiltered long-form, marketed to a generation of readers, whom have little patience for anything over two thousand words: I briefly glossed over an experience with a gentleman we shall now refer to as, Bruce.
Bruce, was half an inch shy of Six foot, but he made it up in girth. I would imagine, that he would probably sit comfortably between 120kg-130kg.
He was a loud mouth arsehole, and an insufferable prick to have to have to endure a working day alongside. He who would make fun of just about anyone, for anything. Tearing them down, having a laugh, sharing a joke. I bared witness to all sorts of your typical Aussie banter: casual racism, casual misogyny, casual xenophobia, casual homophobia… Taking in full stride George Brandis’ opinion, of your right to be a bigot. (Circa: Abbotts attempt to repeal 18C, 2014)
If an attack were directed at me, he would usually cite something about my appearance, for instance, on one occasion:
‘Are those your sister’s boots?’
Or, on another occasion, when the sleaves of my t-shirt were rolled up:
‘Roll your sleeves down, you fairy.’
Or, even the way I would sit:
‘Uncross your legs you girl, sit like a man’
This was all pretty standard, nothing too unfamiliar, this is Australia after all… And, none of this behaviour was easily objectionable, not without causing serious unnecessary friction.
“I’m gonna break into your heart
I’m gonna crawl under your skin”
– Iggy Pop
For my Twenty-third birthday, I invited a small gathering of fifteen, or so, to come around to my place to enjoy a drink, eat some food, and witness me stumble my way through a live music performance. I had a few drinks, and got myself nice and sloppy – forgetting, that it had almost been twenty hours since my last meal – and strapped on my guitar.
I stood there, draped in a khaki kimono, with which, I had taken the time to graffiti with black spray paint. Surrounding me, illuminated by the white fairy lights – that I had frivolously strung around the room, and wrapped around my microphone stand – were plywood boards, dawning similar graffiti to my kimono. From “$1 Mill Turnbo” to, “Fuck Aus”, to meta quotes from Salad Lashings.
It was an extravagant display of my current tunnel visioned ‘artistic catharsis’, of which I spoke of, in my last tune: A Love Song
A sad display, of my inability to disconnect from my obsessive focus on current events. An almost chauvinistic public masturbation ceremony, where my guests left feeling vilified by my arrogance… Yet, unfortunately, the questions I was hoping to evoke, were not asked.
The evening prompted me, to peruse a new direction, I had been considering for some time; a semi-permanent reinvention of myself. And, as one of my female guests rummaged through my book case, and I stood there draped in my khaki gown, it became apparent to me what I needed to do.
Within that book case, lies many books, some fiction, some non-fiction, some autobiographical, some semi-autobiographical, but, they all have one thing in common: they’re all by men.
I do not own a single book, written by a Woman.
Recently, I have started noticing things about my cultural diet. It would appear, that it mainly revolves around Men, and very few Women. Yet, throughout my life some of the most inspirational, and meaningful individuals, have been Women.
Of course, you tend to gravitate towards things you feel some sort of representation in; yet, therein lies our main issue. With these degrading, gender constructs so dominate in our lives, we tend to forget that Men and Women, really are much the same. It is civilisation, that has imposed this great imbalance, and polarised ideas of our psyches.
Now, I am not about to declare myself a crazy feminist who is out to fight for Women’s rights, that would be a very arrogant, “man-like” thing to do. Women, are going to be the ones that liberate themselves from inequality; they are powerful, they are intelligent, and sure as hell, they are crazy enough to rattle men to their core.
There is a side to the fight for equality that needs to be addressed from the male side, and recently, it has become growingly apparent how evident it is in my own life.
As I watch my heroes die, I have come to realise what it is, I must do
So, I have decided to take on a new identity, and peruse furthering my education on female creatives, so that I can be influenced by them, and promote their genius. This, I am certain, will in no way detract from the great male artists which I have spent almost a quarter of a century consuming – it would be very hard to get all that Bret Easton Ellis, and Lou Reed out of your head – but, I believe it is important to recognise at least the imbalance that may lie within your own life.
These gender identities that we must all live true to, are just a part of old doctrine, that we must do away with. It’s sad that there is a huge portion of atheists, and free thinkers in this country, that still reflect twentieth century Christian values. Bizarre rational spews from these people, but, they’re just full of fear after all, whether it be that they may one day lose someone they know to a Muslim extremist, or, that their child may be a raging homosexual, who sucks more dick than their wife ever did.
Don’t ever be misconstrued, I aim to stick my boot in the back of your spine.
It was Zan Rowe – perhaps triple j’s most well versed presenter, with a clear cut taste in great music, film, and literature; you could even call her one of Australia’s most prominent cultural experts – who convinced me to venture out of my comfort zone and give Beyoncé’s, Lemonade a spin. Of course, like a stoned sucker, I signed up for my free trial of Tidal – those fuckers, have now taken twenty dollars from me – and, as I sat in my own studio watching her visual album, and heard her delayed cry come through my Yamaha monitors; as the violins fade-in, bringing the opening track: Pray You Catch Me, to an undeniably beautiful conclusion. I knew, I was wrong.
Followed up quickly, by the brilliant pop song, covered in Ezra Koenig’s genius – and diplo’s air horns…. I was certain, I had made a mistake to dismiss this record without proper digestion.
And, it is superb. It opened up doors for me, it allowed me to see how wrong I had been, to have always disregarded Beyoncé so viciously… Just a voice, I think not. And, even so, what a voice. This Woman was a god, and like Jack White begs: love god herself.
Diversity, and flexibility are necessary, for art to progress, and art is generally a reflection of the human psyche, so, perhaps it best be said: that these boundaries designed to limit individuals from crossing man-made constructs, imposed, and enforced out of ignorance, should be pushed, until they are all but dissolved.
The argument, that general rears its head up from Men, whom seem to believe that this is an attack on masculinity, is: that a man, is somehow weak for embracing their more feminine side. Yet, that painfully brings to our attention, the school of thought out there, which believe, femininity means weakness. Which is far from the truth.
Recently, a close friends sibling just completed ADF training, and emerged most outstanding soldier from her Platoon; beating out 40 men, and 5 other Women to the prestigious accolade. A young Woman, who I have had the pleasure of knowing for a good portion of my life. A woman, who has shown her willingness to front up to any challenge you place in front of her, with a lifetime pursuit of proving: she is just as capable, if not more so, than her male counterparts.
An aggressively competitive shark of a human, who you wouldn’t wish to cross even on a good day. And, an inspiration to all those around her; frightening even some of the most masculine Men I know, back into their shells. Yet, with all of her assertion of dominance, through her courage and strength, and resilience to the ultra-masculine ostracising conventions, which Men try to impose on Females; she manages to find time to be a graceful, young woman in her own right. Proving, if only to all those around, that Women will indeed inherit the earth.
“We realised, that we had gotten degrees, and we knew nothing about Women.”
“We took our advanced degrees – some were PHD’s, some were Master’s degrees – and we burned them. In public.”
– Ruth Rosen
I have been fortunate enough to be surrounded by such mystical creatures, for much of my life. Women, who face all adversaries with a non-violent cunningness, that rattles men down to their cores. Sure, if anything is wielded, with ill-will, then you tend to find yourself in a territory that inflicts emotional pain; yet, when used correctly, it can inspire, and liberate young minds to fight one day for their own justices.
These inspiring individuals, I feel are much closer in line with any human-form representation of a God, that has ever been proposed. And, should you be of the belief that God is indeed some man-like entity, then, perhaps, it best you reline your perspective of just what sex she designed in Her form. Better yet, discard of such ideas, and lunacy, and shift your spiritual worship, and morale authority to: atomic hypothesis.