Category Archives: Uncategorized

WHY I CHANGED MY NAME, SISTERS

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I’ve just finished reading Cath Deveny’s essay collection ‘Say When’, and thought it was great. Who else in the Australian media is as grumpy, post-feminist, bogan and bleeding heart lefty at the same time?
I do take issue with one of her complaints though, and I feel the need to get all defensive and back-archey about it. *hair bristle*
CHANGING YOUR NAME TO YOUR HUSBAND”S NAME IS NOT F

EEDING THE PATRIARCHY.
There, I said it. But I still feel the need to explain myself. …ahem….I’ve always wanted a different name. As I’ve said to my mum “Jayne Harris?’  You could have called me Jane Doe and it would be more memorable.’ Jayne Harris is a completely and utterly , white-bread forgettable name. I had always thought the rule of thumb with names was – if you’ve got a flowery or complicated surname, yeah, go with something simple for the first. Amy Winehouse.  Kate Miller-Heidke. Kim Kardashian (whoever she is.) It works.
If you’re a euro mutt like me and have inherited an incredibly bland surname, you can afford to be a bit more adventurous. Balthazar Getty. Geraldine Halliwell. Paris Hilton. See the balance?
As I see it, people who change their name for no real reason honestly seem like, well, tools. Exceptions would be if you were in the witness protection program, or if your surname was Hitler (and there must have been some, you’re telling me he had NO relatives at all?)
Now had my fiance’s surname been, say, Schmitt or Cockburn or Hore, hey, I might have stuck with Harris. It’s not actively bad. (Apologies to any Schmitts, Cockburns or Hores who might read this.) But – Jayne Lamb? For real? I loved the sound of it, and you’re going to remember it, just like in the song, eh?
I mean, for me, it sounds like it should ring a bell. Jayne Lamb. Was she that Romantic poet who had simultaneous affairs with both Byron and Shelley and then drowned in Lake Geneva after taking too much laudanum?
Is she that reclusive, scary-eyed rock star who hasn’t released an album since her grungemaster husband hung himself back in the twilight of the eighties?
Is she the mild mannered alter ego of some kickarse girl superhero, or better yet, the mild mannered but psychologically shaky employee who just COULDN”T TAKE IT  ANY MORE and became one of Batman’s arch enemies? You know,  Anna Crusis? Or Amanita Versa?
Hell, maybe she was just your grade two teacher, the one with the centre part and braces, who wore dangly earring and a kaftan. Whatever. It generates something. And when you put it with my middle name, it sounds like something off a Chinese menu. You want rice or noodles with your Jein Lin Lamb?
So, Cath, I come to disagree with you. Changing my name (NB I don’t refer to it as ‘taking my husband’s name’ – he’s still in possession of his) does not make me a beige cardigan wearing, never says a thing ‘Mrs’ ala Janette Howard. But it sounds great. And I haven’t had to join the witness protection program to do it.

ON WEDDINGS AND WHY EVERYBODY SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO CHOOSE THEM

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Four years ago today -almost exactly – I woke up with the weirdest feeling. Something massive was happening today, something I was actually going to have to wear stockings and heels for. I am not a morning person (not quite to the point of having a novelty t-shirt that says “I’m-up-and-dressed-what-more-do-you-wan

t”, but almost) and I had to search around my blurry consciousness for what was going on. Job interview? My birthday? Oh, that’s right, my wedding. Our wedding. Nat and I are getting married today.
I’m not going to go into huge details about the day – but I can remember the nerves, the excitement, and the fact that *this is actually happening*.
We had a small civil ceremony at my in-law’s lovely house, with maybe fifty guests; close friends and family. It went without a hitch (except for the literal ‘hitching’ I suppose) and we even managed to get the kiss right. (Yes, you do have to practice kissing in the rehearsal. One of us kept tilting our head the wrong way. Possibly me.)
My nieces/ flowergirls looked adorable (Mikayla’s sequinned pink converse almost stole the show) and my nephew did manage to drop the rings, but all said and done it was amazing/ nerve-wracking/ and joyous all at once.) I was very aware that it wasn’t about the day itself, but the kickstarting of a new way of living for both of us. Which is why it was a fairly short, intimate and casual affair; I wasn’t going to wear a long white dress and pretend I was a virgin (at 35, that ship had long since sailed); we didn’t have any formal photographs; the food was casual and buffet-served. When I hear that today the average wedding costs well into five figures, I’m kind of aghast. Wouldn’t that money be better spent on a  house deposit or something? My little black semi-goth-lolita dress was $75. Apparently some women spend almost ten times that! It makes no sense to me at all.
Anyway, my point is, my life changed for the better that day. Having Nat as my side-kick/ best friend/ husband has literally saved my life. That’s an option that should be availble to any couple, regardless of gender, because it kicks arse; that’s why I’m so enthusiastic about legalising gay marriage. Because it’s awesome.

ha ha ha. But no.

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I'd LOVE to know what he'd just been asked.


I know, I know, I shouldn't be such a bitch BUT sometimes the shenanningans on FB are JUST TOO MUCH. Don't we all have an aquaintance who posts albums full of photos of themselves purely to garner a flurry of comments from their sychophants – er, friends – oh Agatha you're so cool and sexy and I wish I was like you etc etc and Agatha herself is *totally* into it, saying things like, yes, I totally agree I should have been born in a different time frame, my beauty is just so classic and doesn't fit in with the Gossip Girl mode….oh please, someone tell that girl/guy to shut up. I'm probably just jealous. 😉

HEROINE ADDICT IV

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Edge Of The Moon from Night Of Hunters, 2011


I don’t really listen to classical music – okay, that’s a lie, I never listen to classical music, I just sometimes accidentally hear it. So in trying to get my head around Tori Amos’ new album, Night Of Hunters, I listened to the corresponding pieces that the NOH songs are ‘variations’ on. It’s something I would only do once,out of curiousity (which makes me sound like someone about to develop a devastating ice habit.) I can’t really deny that I understand rock more than anything else – although I do have a soft spot for some musical theatre which is an inevitable result of attending drama school. All I really discovered from this was that I can’t write with any great clarity about the album, because as strange as it sounds, it really does seem to be something you have to experience as a whole. (“Song Cycle” is the technical term, which makes me think of washing mahines.) To describe any one song would be a little like reviewing Star Wars but only the Cantina scene. I don’t think I will drink it up the way I did American Doll Posse, even though it’s kind of that albums elegant, British older sister. But I am still utterly enamoured of Tori. I can’t think of a musician who is less concerned with being cool. And who has put out a rock epic, a MOR album, a Xmas album ALL THE WHILE touring and then a double concept album based on 19th century classical music and Irish mythology – in the space of four years. Even if you can’t stand a single one of her songs you’ve got to admire her work ethic.

Ink-stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors

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Ink-stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors

Ink-stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors by Jennifer K Stuller, I B Tauris, 2010©

Are you a feminist? Are you a genre-TV-and-movie geek? Do you ever ask yourself ‘what would Buffy do’? Then you need to read this book. Stuller concentrates on TV and graphic novels for the most part, and it is /kind/ of depressing that almost every show in this book has been cancelled…and we’re now innundated with gossip girls and pretty little liars who are most spectacularly lame in the superpower department.Still, relive the glory days of Buffy, Xena, Dark Angel et al and hope some new blood is inspired to make women super again.

UNGAINFULLY EMPLOYED

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There’s only so much to do when the weather in frowny and discouraging and you’re doing nothing but sitting by the phone, waiting for some important person to tell you what in the slashy heck is going on with your life. So here’s my project – making icons Livejournal style and putting them into galleries on Google+. They’re not there for anyone to interpret or judge, but they make my brain circuits work and they’re hell of fun. I found a great, extremely basic photo editor called and while it’s probably only satisfying for complete amateur hours like me, well, technically, Bigcorporate bookshop is still sort of paying me to do it.
I’ve already done a stack of “collages” for each sign of the zodiac, and my next task is to make an LJ style icon – one for each Tori Amos album, featuring my favourite lyric. So I’m not doing anything terribly original – it’s probably copyright-infringement-baiting, really, but…Imma not caring. If you see anything you like, feel free to take, but you must give credit to the original artist. (Tori’s probably not so bothered. Shower my world with pink and glitter…at least it’s free AND it keeps off the street and out of trouble.

Silent All These Years - from 'Little Earthquakes'