Monday, May 30, 2005


Today has been a slow and grumbly day - a folllow on from yesterday where I arrived home at 6ish and hid in my room - migraine thumping.
While popping pills and swilling water and bathing myself in lavender, I also read saturday's herald. The SMH is such shit it makes me suicidal every time i read it. smug beige gloss shit.

So today - I checked my email, and played with some tickle tests. they sent me results of my suitable partners for this week and urged me to post my photo. I think my personal ad was something quite sinister and psychotic so I wonder about these winsome maidens who offer themselves to me unseen online. Sometimes I think I should write to some of them. Their eyes implore me to - but Oh god - I can't - it would be playing and I'm not really interested at all - just curious........

On the tickle tests - I've done an IQ test "congratulations! you have an IQ of 46, this puts you in the top 99.99% of people on the planet! For more on your intelligence quota please enter your credit card detail...." and a career suitabilitiy test (OK I filled this one our for real - and they suggested I should be in something creative like academia - but before I sobbed they offered me a free online remote learning course so I was reassured).

Todays tests were on my sexual energy. I'm a 7. What the fuck does that mean? It's not a 7/10 or a 7/100 - just a random number. and Also my relationships color. (no U). I'm red. Is that cadmium red?, or red ochre? carmine perhaps? crimson lake? vermillion? madder? I guess these things aren't made for painters - a rouge ain't ever a rouge or a rouge or a rouge for us.........

I've felt increadibly tired for the past week. My bones ache when I walk, my tits hang down to the pavement, my hands ache when I type. For every day I get out of bed - to do even the most minor thing - I have to spend about 20 hours in bed to recover. I kid you not. Maybe My bed is just too comfortable. I wish I had some job where I have to lie in bed and read all day. Oh yeah, shit. I do. I just wish I had a lap top - so I could do my online reading in bed. Oh fuck - then I'd turn into that scary character from Lautreamonts "the chant of Maldoror......."

wait while I tyr to find it on google

Je suis sale. Les poux me rongent. Les pourceaux, quand ils me
regardent, vomissent. Les croûtes et les escarres de la lèpre
ont écaillé ma peau, couverte de pus jaunâtre. Je ne connais
pas l'eau des fleuves, ni la rosée des nuages. Sur ma nuque,
comme sur un fumier, pousse un énorme champignon, aux
pédoncules ombellifères. Assis sur un meuble informe, je n'ai
pas bougé mes membres depuis quatre siècles. Mes pieds ont
pris racine dans le sol et composent, jusqu'à mon ventre, une
sorte de végétation vivace, remplie d'ignobles parasites, qui
ne dérive pas encore de la plante, et qui n'est plus de la
chair. Cependant mon coeur bat. Mais comment battrait-il, si
la pourriture et les exhalaisons de mon cadavre (je n'ose pas
dire corps) ne le nourrissaient abondamment? Sous mon
aisselle gauche, une famille de crapauds a pris résidence,
et, quand l'un d'eux remue, il me fait des chatouilles.
Prenez garde qu'il ne s'en échappe un, et ne vienne gratter,
avec sa bouche, le dedans de votre oreille: il serait ensuite
capable d'entrer dans votre cerveau. Sous mon aisselle
droite, il y a un caméléon qui leur fait une chasse
perpétuelle, afin de ne pas mourir de faim: il faut que
chacun vive. Mais, quand un parti déjoue complétement les
ruses de l'autre, ils ne trouvent rien de mieux que de ne pas
se gêner, et sucent la graisse délicate qui couvre mes côtes:
j'y suis habitué. Une vipère méchante a dévoré ma verge et a
pris sa place: elle m'a rendu ennuque, cette infâme. Oh! si
j'avais pu me défendre avec mes bras paralysés; mais, je
crois plutôt qu'ils se sont changés en bûches. Quoi qu'il en
soit, il importe de constater que le sang ne vient plus y
promener sa rougeur. Deux petits hérissons, qui ne croissent
plus, ont jeté à un chien, qui n'a pas refusé, l'intérieur de
mes testicules: l'épiderme, soigneusement lavé, ils ont logé
dedans. L'anus a été intercepté par un crabe; encouragé par
mon inertie, il garde l'entrée avec ses pinces, et me fait
beaucoup de mal! Deux méduses ont franchi les mers,
immédiatement alléchées par un espoir qui ne fut pas trompé.
Elles ont regardé avec attention les deux parties charnues
qui forment le derrière humain, et, se cramponnant à leur
galbe convexe, elles les ont tellement écrasées par une
pression constante, que les deux morceaux de chair ont
disparu, tandis qu'il est resté deux monstres, sortis du
royaume de la viscosité, égaux par la couleur, la forme et la
férocité. Ne parlez pas de ma colonne vertébrale, puisque
c'est un glaive. Oui, oui... je n'y faisais pas attention...
votre demande est juste. Vous désirez savoir, n'est-ce pas,
comment il se trouve implanté verticalement dans mes reins?
Moi-même, je ne me le rappelle pas très clairement;

I just cut and poasted it from sorry I haven't found a translation online yet - I'll work on one in may spare time. hah!)

basically it is a description of filth and topor - my ideal state! which is probalby why i rememember it!

but it is a suitable opening into todays little pensee which is for Paul -whose funeral anniversary is this friday. It is appropriate that Paul's funeral was the same day as Able recieved her permanent residency stamp in her passport and a rounded way to end my friendship wiht him. My previous intimate contact wiht Paul was while really trashed at a party as he helped me over the fence of some cemetry so I could have wild drunken sex on a gravestone with a beautiful nymph who had casually leapt over the 6 foot palings like some fleet footed deer.

After our bruising encounter with cold granite, nymph and I leapt back over the fench (she leapt - I kind of drunkenly crashed thorugh or dragged myself under it.......) and then retired to further our pursuits in our mutual friends bed. Paul was the type of boy who insisted on being present at such a moment - dear drunken snogs - and boasting about his penis peircing - which kind of got me worried coz I saw no evidence of the kind and spent about a year - freaking out about the throughness of my STD checks. (Like if I couldn't see a whoppping prince albert - how the hell would I not if there was a wart, crab or whopping great chancre?) He later confessed that the prince albert was beside his bed - coz he hdan't had the guts to insert it yet. Phew.

Paul was the also one of the few men alive stupid enough to try to mediate a messy breakup between two lesbians by pashing one in front of the other. Onya Paul! However this act of extreme sports insensitivity actually worked - and deflected the screaming sapphic rage of well... ahem... me away from the nymph and onto his more capable frame. Anywyay all this was over a decade ago and everyone is over it. PAul managed to irritate people in te most extreme and charming manner possible - and get away with it.

He was also really friendly and made me feel welcome into his home or bar stool if I ever needed it. He ought me lots of beers when I was poor or sad or both (and I mena a lot of beers) and bought a vulva at my first show. He was one of those scruffy messy boys that I see as phallic mirrormorphs to myself and who I felt really comfortable around.

He lived around the corner and the last time I saw him I felt really glad that he was probably not ever going to change, but stay the same, funny, obnoxous but genuinely good willing and very very funny and friendly forever. Unfortunately I was right. I guess its better than him turning over a new leaf and becoming some kind of sober housecleaning non wenching corporate wunderkind - but still, I don't like death. The third hand story I heard of causes (I love how in our society everyone asks "how did they die as a way of avoiding the unanswerable WHY did they die?") that apparently he'd had a regular pissup at the townie and been so trashed that he'd decided instead of walking 10 minutes down king street to home - that he'd crash on an aquaintances couch. Poor people woke up the next day to a hangover from hell and a corpse on the couch. Apparently he popped some downers and didn't wake up. Drunk Athsmatic plus downers in winter equals Respiratory failure. One of those accidental suicides that come so easily to athsmatics. (Just like my brother 5 years before.) His family apparently and so courageously took it as suicide and asked for donations to beyond blue. Paul, so funny, cheery and warm hid his black dog too damn well.

So as I bookworm and snuffle unwashed in my saggy pyjamas (not quite the fosseys flannel variety but soft old clothes that pass between doona, couch and a tim tam dash to the corner shop quite well) and skate past my own occasional grips in deathly clutches of despair, I think of Paul and how everyone felt at his funeral, and remind myself that living is hard, change is hard, and that stasis is easy, but deadly. Deadly in the Maldorors sense, as we become granitised in our own sarcophagus of intertia. I'm sinking down into my stomach, hiding from everyone and avoiding my increasingly girthy corpus. Bad bad girl! In any case it's time for me to leave my ugh boots and possibly change from my overalls and skulk up the uni. I leave my stolid silent self here and venture forth to kid myself and others that I'm some kind of dynamo. Believe me I'm not.

Coarse and Harried

About a year ago - hell wow it WAs a year ago - anna finally got Permanent residency! this menat that she could receive centrelink benefits, study in australia, and also travel independeently of me. It also menat that our 4 years of DIMIA scrutiny were over.

I've included the boring bureaucractive details of our file - to show just how uch crap we had to gather, and also as a guildeline for anyone else shagging someone foreign!

Attention: (I've kept them anonymous)
Contact Officer, 801 Team. (don't you love that Tema word?)
Residence Section,
Department of Immigration, Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs

File No: thought I'd keeps this one blank

18th May 2004.

Dear Kind Buereaucrat

Please accept enormous bribe of multiple unctuous goodies.

Thank you for your letter regarding the application for permanent residency for my better half, which we lodged on 2nd April 2002.

We are still in an ongoing and committed relationship and wish the Department to grant Anna the Visa subclass 814, Interdependent Relationship.

To that end we have enclosed the following documents as requested. These are enclosed in the dossier attached to this letter:

1. Form 1101. Awaiting return from AFP. Posted on _06_/03/04. this was a delight - we wiated 3 months for a police clearance1 apprently they were held up by the war on terror.
2. Form 80 – Personal Particulars for character Assessment
3. Form 1221 – Additional Personal Particulars information
4. Applicant Statutory Declaration: what she said
5. Nominator Statutory Declaration: see below
6. Form 888: my mother
7. Form 888: our friend whowe didn't lose in the past 4 years
8. Recent Evidence of continuing and genuine spouse relationship.

We can both usually be reached in the evenings, and often during the day on our landline Otherwise you can reach us on our mobile phones. We are happy to arrange a perosnal liason in basement books in order to disucss any arrangements which mya expedite our case.

We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Yours Sincerely

Recent Evidence of our continuing and genuine interdependent relationship.

Please find certified copies of the following documents:

a) Financial Commitments: (i) Joint Bank Account statements - not too hard in Australia - but impossible in France - we went and saw our bank and got them to put an account in both our names.
(ii) Receipts for joint purchases
getting this incolved kjeppeing EVERY SINGLE RECIEPT of purchases we made and getting the average illiterate retialer to write both our names on anything we bought. the hard bit was actually going into shops as we do our shopping at Paddys or the food coop, or delis in marrickville. OSmeimte sI splurge on second hand books. We find funriture, kitchen ware & clothes in dumptsers.

Folder Two:

b) Evidence of Living together:
(i) Anna’s Lease,
(ii) Margaret’s Lease

c) Joint receipts for household utilities:
(i) Telstra Bills

d) Letters & invitations addressed jointly to us
(i) Envelopes of letters addressed to us both
(ii) Invitations addressed to us both
Like we use snail mail really often. but we got enought.

e) Envelopes of letters to each of us at our current address.

f) Photographs of us together (i) Dinner with friends, (March 2003)
(ii) Our housewarming (July 2003) held especially to get photos
(iii) Exhibition opening (September 2003)
(iv) Christmas with Anna’s Family (December 2003),
(v) Paris in Wedding Gear (December 2003) held especially to get photos
(vi) Holiday in London with friends (January 2004)
(vii) Blue Mountains with friends (March 2004)

g) Evidence of out commitment to supporting one another:
(i) Wills nominating each other as beneficiaries
(ii) Appointment of Enduring Guardianship

h) Evidence of joint travel and holidays
(i) Airline travel to Paris and Vietnam
(ii) Bus tickets to London
(iii) Boat Tickets to Bell Ile on Mer
That was the other fun bit. We HATE going on holidays together and fight even more than when we are arranging a perfomrance together. for the above purposes we had to book all our holidays together, and take them. Vietnam - being a catholic homophobic hell bhole was really fun for trying to get hotel recipts for double rooms in both or names too..

i) Joint involvement in cultural activities and membership of groups.
(i)Advertisement for group exhibitions
(ii) Membership receipt for GLITF
the folder suggested rotayr, church gorups, sporting groups - yeah great!

Nominator Statement:

This is what I wrote a year ago -to our dear beloved commonwealth officers about why Anna's Temporary Residency whould be changed to a permanent residency.

Anna’s receipt of a temporary residence visa was firstly an enormous relief. The process of applying for the visa was, I consider, the most stressful experience I’ve ever had. So much of our futures depended on our relationship being recognised, that it felt that we’d had kept our lives on hold until we had some guarantee of legal recognition of our relationship within Australia. For me personally I guess the period of working to support both of us in a demanding, difficult and unreliable occupation like life modelling forced me to grow up. Life modelling was the only job I could do that would enable me to support Anna and yet continue with a serious studio practice as a professional artist. Looking back, I guess this was the time where I really put myself on the line, and social labels such as “artist” and “lesbian” were really things I earned through sheer hard work!

Once Anna’s tourist visa expired, and her temporary residency visa came through, the pressure for me as the sole income earner in Australia was largely eased, although I was frustrated that Anna didn’t rush out and find the first crap full time job that came her way! From May, Anna started to do casual life modelling at TAFEs and the NAS where I worked, and we purchased her a mobile phone so she could obtain more work at short notice.

Anna started working on a translation from English into French of a novel that a friend had given me for my birthday, so she kept herself busy as always. This translation took over 12 months to complete and is finally in the stages of being accepted for publication.

In July 2002, Anna was offered some casual work at the Alliance Francaise as a tutor. Initially Anna was working 4 hours a week for the first 2 months, however this was in her chosen field and the remuneration was the same as working 2 days of modelling. Through the Alliance, Anna was able to gain a network of French speaking friends and colleagues in Australia. Her confidence as a language tutor increased, and she began to have private students as well. It was good to see Anna initiate and participate in social circles that weren’t based around my activities, friends or interests. Anna’s friends and colleagues from the Alliance welcomed me into their social networks as well and this improved my own confidence with speaking French.

In March 2003, I held an exhibition at the Alliance Francaise of paintings completed in France, and this was largely due to the encouragement of Anna that I approached the organization. Although the exhibition was itself a success, my negotiations with the director of the Alliance were not very pleasant and I was able to gain a sense of the unprofessionalism of the organization and bullying tactics of its French appointed administrators. This culture of bullying and unprofessionalism later lead to Anna being dismissed at the end of 2003, for which she negotiated and won a settlement through the industrial relations tribunal. Anna’s experience with the Alliance Francaise, gave her some important experience in negotiating workplace relations as well as negotiating the industrial culture of her newly adopted country. I was and am impressed still with Anna’s diplomacy and eloquence in English in being able to negotiate such complicated aspects of her life here.

In August 2002, as a first Anniversary wedding present, our very close friends Maeve and Natalie offered us their old car, which they had replaced with a newer model bought from Natalie’s uncle. We had gone camping with Maeve and Nat in their older car and so it had a lot of nostalgic value for us as well as them. Their older car needed a lot of bodywork repairs, but was fine mechanically. Armed with a sculptors knowledge of panel beating and large amounts of elbow grease, Anna and I spent 2 weeks preparing the car to be reregistered in October, which went through without a hitch. Anna has had her driving licence since she was a teenager in France, but I have never progressed beyond my L’s, so the car is still largely her domain.

Anna and I had become increasingly frustrated at sharing a bedroom in a four-bedroom household with sympathetic but largely incompatible flatmates. Fortunately a vacancy appeared in another household in the same housing cooperative, and Anna, was able to move in. Shortly afterwards, the remaining flatmate also decided to move out, and I was able to move my room over to the new household. Since September 2002 we have lived in the new household of No.7 with a space for each of us as well as home filled with books and artworks.

Anna’s own relationship with the Cooperative has greatly improved since she gained the status of a resident and member of the Cooperative. Anna participates in the weekly sketch club, has participated in and helped organise exhibitions in the Cooperative gallery and is also an active member of the Management Committee. Other residents now see Anna as far more than my partner, but as a valuable member of the Cooperative in her own right.

I guess overall 2002 was a huge year of adjustment. This was really the year when Anna began to find her feet as a resident of Australia and someone inserted into Australian society through her workplace and where we are both living. Throughout 2002, I finally realised with relief and later panic that I was not ‘in control’ of Anna and our relationship as I had felt, when I was her only connection to Australia. I had to accept that Anna was free to work in whatever occupation she felt, and to work as much or as little as she chose, and that I myself was also more freed of the responsibility of supporting us both and could have more choice in what I actually wanted to do with my life. For this reason I decided to return to study and to complete my honours Art history and Theory. At first I simply wanted to gain some structured intellectual stimulation and catch up on all of the reading and writing I had missed while working and travelling, however I did so well in honours that I have received a grant to do a PhD. While I’m still getting used to the idea of a career path as an academic, my stipend means that we have a guaranteed income source which is adequate enough to support us both for the next few years.

Between us things changed a great deal in 2002 and 2003, as our financial positions were reversed. Anna had previously had a large amount of unstructured time and no independent means of support beyond her savings brought from France. As she obtained more teaching work at the Alliance she became the breadwinner of our household as I did less modelling work and concentrated more on my work in the studio. Anna provided a great deal of moral support but also financial support for my exhibitions in 2002, and 2003. Due to Anna’s frugal habits and hard work, our bank balance steadily increased, and she was able to fund most of our travel and still enure that there was enough left in the bank account when we returned for us to feel at ease in case anything happened. For us, financial security means that we have enough money in the bank to return to France in case of a family emergency or for both of us to survive if either of us became incapacitated and couldn’t work. Anna’s lack of access to social security has meant that our independent financial security within Australia has been a priority.

While I was studying in 2003, I was able to support myself through study and part time work, and I was able to save some funds to buy a computer and contribute to a joint holiday overseas at the end of the year. When I look at my tax returns for the previous years and realised how little funds we have needed for us to feel financially secure I am amazed, particularly when friends in similar financial situations whinge about not being able to pay their bills or their rent. Since our return to Australia in January this year, Anna has supported herself through tutoring and life modelling and I have been the main breadwinnner, through my stipend and part time teaching work. The main effect this has on our wellbeing is a sense of security. Our habits are naturally frugal and we trust each other’s financial judgement implicitly.

The concern for financial security has been the major preoccupation of Anna and I over the past five years, but I would say that in general that we are not particularly materialistic, not in the acquisitive or consumerist sense anyway. We don’t go to nightclubs, cafe’s, or mainstream films, and spending money on makeup, hairdressers or fashion is completely alien to our way of life as is gambling. This means that our lives are fairly simple and our financial priorities are quite straightforward. Our car maintenance costs are less than the cost of buying a travelpass every week, and thanks to the housing cooperative our rent is only 25% of our incomes. I think we both like eating out, but both of us prefer picnics to restaurants. I guess we have adopted many of the frugal habits of Anna’s parents who never go to restaurants but are obsessive about procuring and preparing fine foods at home. We have a few consumerist vices; I love buying books and art magazines and Anna loves to collect good wines, and we sometimes buy art at friend’s exhibitions. When we go out, it is mainly to free events, like cinema screenings at the Art Gallery of NSW or to art openings. Otherwise we meet up with friends, for dinner or at the Pub.

Our lives seem to be very busy and full. Aside from my study, the work that we both do is casual, often last minute and during the evenings as well as during the day. The unpredictable nature of our casual work means that a 17-20 working week may actually seem much longer, due to travel times and having to work on evenings and weekends. I have run a drawing class at the Housing Cooperative every Sunday for the past two years – which Anna attends and often helps at, and almost every week, we have one or two openings of exhibitions of artist friends. Consequently we haven’t been involved in any organizations or clubs beyond the small circles where we live and work. We also don’t have a huge amount of quality time to spend with each other. We struggle to keep at least one day or one evening per week just for us alone but it is difficult, and we are usually exhausted. The best times together are often when we have lunch or dinner at home alone, or when in the company of one or two close friends. I usually find that it is in the company of others that Anna’s own attraction to me is reflected and magnified. I am reminded of her intelligence, wit, charm and amazing wealth of knowledge, stories and observations, which are still a strong attraction for me.

Over the past two years we have been on a couple of holidays, but they have become less frequent as our work commitments have come to dominate our lives more. Mum has mainly visited us in Sydney, rather than us visiting her in the country, and it has been good to house her a guest in our own home. We went camping at Dunn’s swamp with friends in Easter 2002, and drove along the Great Ocean Road in December 2002. During this holiday we stopped in Melbourne and stayed with some friends as well as in Canberra on the way back.

At the end of 2003 we both travelled to France. Anna left 3 weeks earlier than me to attend a cinema festival, while I completed my thesis. Our vacation in France was far too brief, but really pleasant and warm. Visiting France now feels to me like “going back” because we return to see family and friends and places that are familiar, instead of discovering something new. However during this trip we also spent a week in London, visiting friends and art galleries, as well as 3 days in Vietnam together. Anna had planned to return early, expecting to be teaching in the first term at the Alliance Francaise. When she heard new of her dismissal it was too late to change her ticket, so I spent 10 days in Vietnam, travelling alone, and wishing I could have shared my experiences with her. We are hoping at the end of this year to host Anna’s parents in Australia, and if not then to maybe travel to Tasmania or New Zealand over the summer. We often visit friends in the Blue Mountains, and occasionally further afield, but not as often as we would like.

Our major travel destination is France. Anna’s parents are getting old and her extended family is very close knit. The more I understand French, the more I appreciate just how painful and difficult it is for Anna to live so far from her family and friends. I would like to be able to spend more time in France with Anna, up to a year if possible, and am aiming for a residency in order to do this. It is frustrating for us both to return there and have no means of support or no activities beyond her family and I think it would be good if we could spend some time there together working or studying.

For the foreseeable future our plans are centred in Australia. We have a home and a community in which we are both intensely involved. Anna now has a studio space and would like to pursue art further, and she is also planning to gain NAATI accreditation so she can work as a translator. I still feel that her life is slightly on hold here, until she can be assured of a permanent position from which she can base her professional development. While we have reasonable financial security for the present we are still both largely focussed on day to day existence, rather than being in a position to know where we’ll be in 5 or 10 years time. I still like to dream of us with a mortgage and a dog somewhere outside of Sydney, but it doesn’t look very likely at the moment. Anna may end up doing a doctorate in French literature, or we may end up having children even, we still don’t really know. What we do know, is that the future is definitely a “we”. I have gained enormously from the emotional stability provided by Anna’s presence in Australia, and I don’t see how it would have been possible for me to do as much as I have without her. While I am seriously pursuing my professional development at present, I could not continue this unless I knew that Anna would be able and willing to remain with me. Our relationship is still the most important thing in my life. This is the foundation for my emotional stability and emotional development and I cannot see how anyone else could possibly replace the role that Anna has in supporting, comforting and also challenging me in my daily existence. If something happened whereby Anna had to return to France, then I would follow her. It is as simple as that. She comes before my work, my studies and my connections here. I would hate to think of us living apart for any extended period and would hate to think of the affect of a separation on her as well as me. If something happened to Anna’s family, I would want to be in France to support her and them. I feel as much as part of their lives as she is of mine here.

Our daily life is not always a bed of roses. Our standards of household cleanliness are vastly different, and Anna is a physically far more active person than I am. When I have a migraine I need to be left alone and Anna still finds this painful. I find Anna’s stoicism and continued activity when she is exhausted or sick completely bewildering and worrying as well. Actually it seems that the more time we spend together, and the more we understand each other’s languages, the more we realise us how unlike we are in so many ways. This can and does cause tension, but it is a great source of stimulation and excitement within our relationship. After nearly six years I can honestly say that Anna is someone I am still discovering. I know a lot about her, but every day I learn something more, and she challenges me in my complacent habits of being able to ‘see through’ or judge peoples character quickly. My familiarity with Anna, her family, her language and culture only increases my curiosity to know and understand more. I guess my “life’s work” is involved with being a painter and a writer, but most importantly it is involved with my relationship with Anna. We have both changed and changed each other while in this relationship in ways which have allowed us both to fully develop into more sensitive and fulfilled people.

It actually means absolutely nothing - except if I
were a french bureaucrat I could ask for a transer to
the same department as my pacs partner.

In terms of french immigration - the categories are
married, divorced, widowed and celibate.

As much as a have a very storng critique of the white
picket fence mevement in the gay and lesbian scene -
I'd be desperate and drunk and lonely as hell if it
wasn't for those nice middle class men at Gay and
Lesbian Immigration Task Force. Australia's extremely
difficult and problematic and limited gay and lesbian
immigration loophole has brought me an enormous amount
of happiness - so I'm kind of stuck in an awful bind
between what I believe in and what I need.

Given we are in a reactionary social culture - I think
it is important to support all movements forward -
however arriere garde they may be. Anything which
promotes a public forum of tolerance, acceptance of
queer lifestyles has my support - we've got our own
social gatherings to corrupt and detourne within the
scene! (he! he!)

Having said that - I'm not about to buy a bunch of
freedom rings and join New Mardis Gras. I allso think
what Glen and others do in biversity - which is a
Queer, non monogamous, polymorphously perverse space -
is really wonderful in terms of promoting a
pluralistic and supportive space for queers. - but I
do supporting Gay and Lesbian marraige rights,
superannuatino rights and immigration rights. etc.

Families are fucking dodgy and fucked up - but they
are also the only social unit reognised by our scarily
molecular society - so i think it is importabt to
expand that definition up as much as possible.........

PacS Pas

June, Oh June!

Is the wonderful anniversary not only of anna receiving her permanet residency status last year, but also the fifth anniversary of our PacSing - or when we made a Pact Civile de truc mouche n'importe quoi.

Bascially I arrived in Paris on 6th june 2000. On the 7th june we wnet to the Palais de Justic ein the middle of PAris. anna explained where she and the other squatters were waiting and playing hadnball amidst the marble columns during their trial earlier that year and I noted it was THE ONLY PLACE on the ile de la cite where there were decent toilets. anyway about a week later I had to take my birth certificats to a translator in rue de Temple and pay him 300 francs. I ran into an australian friend (like you do in Paris) and we hung out - wh was biithing about maitre d's mocking her firench mispronunciation of boeff, bof and borff. I was raving about the best places to dumpster dive.

A week later we went to the Mairie Puteaux and wandered through a heap of corridors to the office of Mademoiselle Gateaux. French beaurocrats are nothing like Australian ones. Their offices are a lot more open - none of these "please take anumber" shit. But they don't have toilets though. Mademoiselle Gateaux spoke ot anna in french and got out some papers whihc she hand wrote and whihc we both had to sign. I felt a lot like anna's chihuahua Erin - Looking intently and understanding very little. We asked Mademoiselle Gateaux to tkae a photo of us in her office holding the PacS certificate and kissing. She obliged.

Later we went outside for a sandwich grecque ala merguez. I won't translate this coz it'll upset the vegans. the building of the Mairie de Puteaux was a big kitsch socialist realist number from the good old days when the banlieu was a red ring aroudn paris. We took lots of silly photos of us doing heroic Communist poses amongst the suclptures and waterfalls.

Anna went and saw MAdemoisell Gateaux on our return visit to Paris a year later. Mademoiselle Gateaux had broken up form her 10 year relationship with another dyke - and they discussed the limitations of PacS

Bascially it actually means absolutely nothing - except if I were a french bureaucrat I could ask for a transer to the same department as my pacs partner.

In terms of french immigration - the categories are married, divorced, widowed and celibate.

If I want to stay in france - I'd need anna's parents to adopt me as their child!!!!

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Horse and Carraige

Lately I've had a burst of friends tying the knot. Some years it seems that everywhere you turn someone is dropping off the perch (I had 5 contemporaries last year- 2 of which were friends and the other three old uni aquaintances). But this year death has been reasonably somnambulant (so far & touch wood) but marraiges have cropped up everywhere. So far - I found out that two friends "eloped" - ie hired a limousine to a private cermony after one crossed a continent to join the other, at least two more friends have gotten engaged and I went to a wedding last week - a member of the same crowd who I'd seen at a funeral nearly 12 months earlier........... the last rush of weddings were of country school friends - all aged about 22 i think - and it seems like another world with different values; 22 was old for marraige compared with some of our classmaters who hitched at 18.......

I'm curious about this latest rush of matrimony, particularly between couples who have been together for long periods of time. The Mr. & Mrs. of last weekend have been together for about 9 years, and engaged for 2 of them. They had a great ceremony (how can you call someone's wedding crap anyway?) ...... the mother of the bride was flowing in cascading pink and blond curls, and danced barefoot with her latest boyfriend, a 7 foot Texan in black wranglers and a 10 gallon steston. the bride's stepmother spoke seriously about the nature of the ealier private garden cermony and non religious rituals, and the father of the bride, swaggering around with a bottle of stolli and a likely assortment of illicit intoxicants gave a speech worthy of a best man. The best man, gentle friend of the gentle groom gave a soft bridesmaid style speech of gushing epithets, and the bride and groom both gave speeches that bore NO resemblace to Bobbies wedding of Home and Away 17 years ago, or Charlene's wedding on Neighbours soon after. The band were a gathering of horns and guitars doing classic wedding music, (Eye of the tiger!) culminating in a crazed hora after the bridal waltz. (My first Hora not on a Cathode Ray Tube!).

As the stepmother of the bride said, this was a chance for the friends and families of the couple to gather together and celebrate what was a great relationship between two lovely people. I could and hell! I should add my own two cent anecdote about the couple. I met the groom as part of a trotksyite sect 15 years ago, and I met the bride in a dear male philandering friends boudoir about 5 years later, where we were both being gleefully wenched...... When I first brought my newly found french lover to australia, the bride bought us both a bottle of champagne and then dragged anna into ther toilets of the nightclub where we were, before having a sudden attack of Jane Austen sensibilities (as one so often does while snogging and snorting in a night club toilet). In fact the bride IS the type of person who DOES have Jane Austen fits while snogging in nightclub toilets -which is probably why she is so damn classy!

At the same time I'm scared of the increasing conservatism of Australian society, and part of me thought that for straights to have weddings is particularly un politically correct at a time when Gays and Lesbians have been officially prohibited from doing the same. But self denial as Political Protest ? (fuck that, I'd rather go on a fast at lent). Even thinking such things I can feel my lips pucker into a disapproving sapphic scowl, and I feel the insidious claws of lavender ideology gripping at my recovering catholic entrails, oh god and it's a slippery slope from one little act of personal boycott to the whole behave! deny! refuse! decline! keep it firm, pure and under moral control school of political disengagement.......icky icky icky beige horror!

Because I'm in the habit of citing philosophy in these blogs - I'm going to continue here. I may have written this bit before, but I love it, so forgive me. Liz Grosz is a goddess. She has a crap haircut and great bone structure, what more could a Dykon need? Her books from 10 years ago (volatile bdies and space time and perversion) both have bits where she takes up Deleuze's interpretation of Nietsche. In space , time and perversion she uses this exploration in relation to lesbianism and queer politics. Nietsche was a bit of a weirdo and had definite crypto fascist leanings - and all types of freaks give all types of spins on his writings...... He is most famously cited in relation to "the will to power" which sends shudders down my spine in invoking distant memories of essentialising mysanthropic goths....... Anyway I *think* the will to power - is the characteristic of those in society who are "masters" , libidinal, powerful, actualised and the opposite of "slaves" those poor neurotic, reactive whingy persecuted losers with whopping inferiority complexes. Like Me, and pretty much anyone catholic, except the pope and all those scary priests and nuns in the marquise de sade stories. Actually Donatein Alphonse has a pretty protonietschean idea of the whole master/slave thing (whihc somes from Hegel by the way). If you are familiar with De Sades works - Justine is the slave, and Juliette is the master. According to Liz, Deleuze reckons that the whole masterliness and slavishness are much more interesting when seen as tendencies in a subjectivity composed of forces impulses and drives rather than fixed desciptions of the subject.

From what I've read (Anti oedipus, the fold and 1,00 plateaus) Deleuze reckons there is no human subject, and he hates freud, and reckons we are all better off describing ourselves and each other as a collection of forces impulses and drives rather than individuals (Hi! I'm not mayhem, I have an urge to sleep as well as a burning need to write, and I keep thinking of that vulva mask i need to make by saturday. Do you know I'm kind of anxious about the meeting I've got with my supervisor in 5 hours? particularly as I've sat up all night and havne't done any serious work on ym thesis...oh well.......). So if we imagine masterliness and slavishness as forces like yin and yang instead of inherent conditions like male and female, we can appreciate that most people deal with conflicting forces of desire, growth, progress, will and change and reaction, fear, conservatism, denial.........etc. It all sounds kind of nice doesn't it?

Anyway - what I lvoe about Liz, is that she was citing her take on Deleuzes take on Nietsche in relation to Teresa de Lauretis - who calls for a lesbian aesthetic and a lesbian practice of love, sex, desire and politics. and liz took a bit of an irigarayan speculum to de lauretis and went "oh but what is a lesbain if we don't even know what a woman is, escept a non man - isn't it all a bit negative?". and Liz, (bless her) says, affirms that lesbianism is foudned on a positive expansive and libidinous desire! Women don't become lesbians against men, as a reaction, terror or fear of men, but because we like women much more! She takes this further in stating that we can come to know what a female subject(ivity) is by acknolwedging the specificity of this desire towards women as a positivce direction. Liz takes if furhter in other essays to. she says again and again, that gay and lesbian desire is not a reactive slavish condition, but a libidinous, joyous one. If anything is reactive and slavish, she reckons it is the heterosexuality founded on homophobia or just general conformity and fear..........

I hope this long meandering has arrived at a point where it seems vaguely relevant to my previous discussion on marraige. for me, this point to a way that queers can have a sexual ethics, which is not proving the hipness of one sexual preference or category over another, but to encourage a socialised expression of sexuality and sexual/emotional relationships that is expansive, inclusive and joyous. I think marraige can be good where it is an inclusive celebration within a community of friends and family of the sexual and emotinoal happiness of a couple (or a commune even) of people. I beleive we need ceremonies and ritual structures so we can give social expression of feelings that are mstly confusing and complicated.

I was going to incvlude a description of my own marraige here, but I'm tired. No OK I'll include it - coz its a great story. anna and I got married nearly 4 years ago and it was the stuff of urban legend. Our initial pretext was anna's permanent residency application as my interdependant partner. We had lived together for a year and needed "6 -10 photos of both of us in a social setting with friends and family" this we didn't have, so we thought a big wedding party would solve the problem and give us a way of thanking all the people who'd provided emotional and material support while we shared a dole for 12 months. People asked my (school) friends who were coming about what type of cermony we were having, if we were going to have celtic hand tying or wicca incantations. Hell we scoffed! Of course we couldn't marry in any of our ancestral churches (Islam, Eastern Orthodox, Catholic or Anglican) but we had our own cult to get married under!

New Orders Of the Flesh was established by Faher Stan and Sister Joan about the time we started squatting with Father Stan's alter ego. Bascially Gavin had this theory that if the squat was busted, we'd get a lot more media if he could make it look like some freaky anti socog cult conspiracy. We decorated the squat with bits of catholic and religious memorabilia and set up morning worship ceremonies for Deomonda -( who was i guess the cult's mascot and who had her own shrine) and gavin even wanted to break into a hospital to get body speciments and use them in fake threatening letters........... oh the dreams!

anyway, three years later, Father Stan and sister joan donned their habits, and we decorated the ALpha Gallery space into a small chapel. Father stan was reading lots of Bataille and was obsessed with strangulation and bloodletting and he wanted to have a fleshly element to the proceedings. So we strung up Deomonda by a noose, and agreed that Sister Joan could extract blood from each of us and combine it in a cup that we could drink from. Then coz all the food was an RSL style buffet - I thougth it would be more appropriate to dip saveloys into the mixture and place them in each others mouths. We then offered blood dipped saveloys to the crowd but most of them were vegan. It was a beautiful wedding. Anna dressed as a full meringue, me as a groom with a white satin stetson, and Arlene Textaqueen was our official illustrator. the sermon and ceremony highlights were broadcvast on 2SER! We did get lots of people to take photos - but only those from my camera that I had entrusted to a friend were ever seen by either of us since.

I guess this has been a long way of arriving at the real point of this blog - which is my blood boiling rage at the Gay and Lesbian Inc. press in sydney in the past few weeks. Last year when John Howard made a federal decision not to recognise homosexual marriages or unions, the federal ALP, with about as much policy initiative as the average axolotl did not oppose him. this is not only because they are stupid or inept, but because most of the ALP right and a good section of the left are paid up members of the catholic church. This is in contradiction with many members of the ALP left who are also gay or lesbian. In fact at its best, the ALP represents that nice image of hegemonic australian social tolerance, where people from difference backgrounds and different belief structures can still get along in the same community. Now John Howard is an evil bastard because he creates and enhances divisions in society, turning us all into nietschian masters or slaves (winners or losers). Most howard critics write about this as wedge politics. But what amazes me is that the ALP can't even respond to this and try to take sides - and the side they have taken in every issue - from boat people to industrial rights to gay and lesbian marriage - is that of the slave:, whingeing, reactive, fearful, neurotic, reactionary.

there was not an outcry last year from Gay and Lesbian Inc. because most of the self declared community representatives (iue the ones who've forged careers from gay and lesbian movements) are also paid up members of the ALP. hell, the ALP gives people a great training and support structure for poeople who want to use social movements in order to enhance their career prospects. (the only equivalent organisations are churches in welfare/charity groups). and I can see why these poeple are loyal to the institution from where they derive their real social power. But I wasn't running down the streets shouting either so I wans't going to get too het up. I DID make a point of polling for the greens at the last federal election in the seat of my local (official community endorsed) member, Tania Plibersek.why? Because I'm gay and married, and I oppose any party who reckons I don't count.

In the past week I've been reading in the gay press (the lesbian press - lotl has about as much content as who weekly - so I don't bother). about some forum that the greens ran in sydney about introducing state based changes. Lee rhiannon - probably informed by the contacts and research of her staff member (an ex gay officer from uni 10 years ago, who has been active and visible in queer politics ever since) announced that she intended to put up a state based bill for marraige reform in the NSW parliament.

Hells bells! and because the corridor sharpies of the labour left hadn't spent many nights over bitter beers and bitter tears using it as some chip to broker some deal with the right over some minor cabinet allocations or power plays for the forthcoming State ALP conference - well! they all oppose it! the gay and lesbian rights lobby oppose it, a number of senr workers at ACON oppose it, a number of prominent gay and lesbian journalists, lawyers, activists oppose it. Of course they cite their principalled ooposion as the voice of "our community", and their tactial oppostion to simply campaigning for a decent policy. IN the process they have earn't my undying hatred. They do not represent the community I come from. the community of queers who I know respect live, teach and work with, and the community of non queers who I also know, respect, work, live with do not act like this. We also don't go to boring expensive mardis gras parties (and you wonder why your making a loss guys?) Or pay membership fees to the Gay and Lesbian business association. We also don't beleive in living our lives in fear, its kind of one of those things you accept to live without when you stop being a catholic.

I don't believe anyone in the ALP is actually a non catholic. Its they way so many of them especially on the left use guilt to harrangue other radicals into joining them. how often have I heard "Come ON! you KNOW the only way to make a difference is from within, you KNOW we need your support to defeat the right! it's people like you who keep the ALP left so weak in this country!" Heaps - but I've never said what I believe, that it is people like them, who keep it weak, narrow minded and selfish. The attraction of a large organisation is its resources and the possibility of gaining some sort of status and security in society. Lots of people make careers based on their political networks and the ALP is one of the biggest. but at what cost? At constantly grovelling and making compromises to people who are your social opponents? (and I won't mince words here - right wing catholics would prefer if queers had never been born or at least never been fucked) At spending your life in brokering deals and playing numbers games of rhetorical strategy? No wonder these people have lost sense of what a community is outside of their own sectarian selfish interests.

Community occurs when poeple follow their hearts and pink bits. When people live full and happy lives and share their ideas, desires and relationships with others, we make real communities of social and political strength. I think I can honestly say that anna and I have phsically and emotionally suffered due to homophobic discrimination. We've lived in terrible poverty, uncertainty and stress and for her linguistic exile. What carried us through were our communities of friends and families who accepted us and supported us in any way they could. Either of us could have married a man and gained instant alternate passports for the other country, but having the courage to put ourselves and our communities to the test created and experience of trust and love that I wouldn't swap for anything.

Monday, May 09, 2005


I'm proud of myself for putting together another website. check out:

It is nearly 3am and I'm at uni - engaging in intense thesis distraction

Forntuntatly I've got the researhc centre to myself - because after 2am - I can't stop farting

I'm sorry I have to share these details with you poor sods - but it is weird what type of visceral reactions my body has to sleeeplessness.

Well as you can see this is a great writing week!

I hope to go home soon. I should do some reading or writing on the tome that will be this week.

I haven't even got flu or migraines ot distract me.

Anna seems reasonably not discontent, and I live in hope.

some iranian guy is being deprted tonight coz he made the mistake of not going to NZ. There's a protest outside dimia at midday.

will i be awake?
will i make a latex vulva face mask - or a red sequinned one?

good night

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Because That's What Girls Do

Dear all,

For those of you who rang and consoled me I have infinite thanks.
It was very hard to talk about.

and now, welcome to the part of the story that should inspire some sort of crazed mysoginist rant.

She was prementstrual.

She changed her mind.

Sounds unreasonable?

yes, and so were the amount of times one ahem one errr prefers to write this in french

bon d'accord - les occasiones de ma joissance apres, plus que mes doigts! on est hereuse, on est content.

Or as we say in english the make up is worth the break up. Stupid and banal bloody language - no wonder I keep aquiring others

I mean I love the language - love its bastardry - love the sounds from my nose as I drawl my strine -
but moments like these.......

joissance in english

oohhhhhhh fuck fuggin fuggin fuck me oh fuggin ohhhhh!!!!

is kind of OK I guess - but you can't imagine Serge Gainsbourg sticking it on a song and making into a hit.

I don't mean to trivialise the vacillations of my better half either.

Yes she was pre menstrual

No I would not dare every mention this to her face.

Survival lesons of loving women 101: DON'T MENTION THE WAR - or the immanence of lady stain season.

Just don't. ever.

calling an irrational foaming at the mouth beast an irrational foaming at the mouth beast will not save ones head from being bitten off.

and I think she had some serious problems.

I think we have some serious problems

Not the least being my apparent tendencies to be an irrational foaming at the mouth beast.

Or just a fridge (Stick me in the corner and stuff me with food and I'll be content)

Anyway things are better for the moment.

After four days of shock - I sobbed a lot. And painted a lot. and she started to soften and call me "sartrean". I think it was a complicated literary reference. I imagine that she thinks I'm a small ugly bespectacled self obsessed philanderer.

She says it and acts more kindly towards me. I'm happy. I even cleared enough books off my bed to make way for a doona.

Sleeping together is actually a big problem.

I thought I had things sorted before we got together

After my last major sapphic implosion 9 years ago (one of those terrible relationships which still makes me shudder and turned the other party off women for life) I swore that I would not end up with a morning person - and that lovers showing eveidence of polysyllabic interaction before 11am would be exocmmunicated.

I spent a number of years damaging my liver and self respect by the tried and true methods of insomnious alcoholism :
Step 1 stay out all night slowly sinking schooners.
Step 2 who ever is left standing as the stars start fading -can be dragged home for the sorts of conjugal comforts inspired by the functioning few cells of a guinness addled limbic brain.
Step 3 fall asleep in sweaty tangle
Step 4 wake up in the afternoon and injest coffee
Step 5 return to step 1.

It is testament to a lot of luck and the mildness of most men (at least of the innner city beer swilling insomnious variety) that I am still on speaking terms with most of the co-conspirators in the above flaccid frolics. anyway it reinforced my anti morning prejudices. I felt safe from ever having to hear the the sultry strains of a pneumatic nymphette cooing into my ear "Lets go joggin down to Glebe for a Fruit whip" as the bare strains of a harsh morning light raked into my vampiric skull..........

However true love ain't sensitive to such things. And I got with Anna in another time zone. and there was always the language barreir to contend with.

Result? I live with a morning nymph.

I hate mornings! - except the soft sennsations of sunlight on my sheets as I snuggle beneath them.
I hate the impicit self righteousssnesss of people who assume that waking up early implies some sort of moral superiority.

*IF ONLY* I could give them a dose of my brain at 4am.

For the past 20 years I have woken up pretty much every day between 3am and 4am.

I have tried most things including sleeping tablets, excercises, medication, meditation, masturbation, yoga, whisky, hot milk, chiropractors, deepak chopra, illicit drugs, illicit sex, illicit literature, psychoanalysis, chinese herbs, western herbs (valerian makes me hyper), acupuncture, futons, waterbeds, hard floors, soft floors, lots and lots of things.

the best thing I have found that works -is to get up and do stuff -do the stuff I wnat to do when I want to do it. It makes everything a lot easier for eveyrone - except anyone else in my bed at the time.

In short, I am very difficult to live with.

Was Sartre and insomniac too?

It's her birthday today and whe's working tonight -and I should prepare a romantic dinner.
Except I'm getting the flu and feel like tinnned tomato soup and fish fingers (yep at such times my cultural roots emerge)

and I'm buying her peking duck tomorrow probably.

maybe I'll do tinned tomato soup and fish fingers by candelight????

maybe I'll get my head bitten off -
maybe I'll call it something french -
la soup du boit avec les doigts dun extrait de poisson industrielle??????

mias non, pas de tout

I've decided to add recipes

ehr's some for flu tea.

the biodynamic masochistic version. Guaranteed if it don't kill you - then it will kill whatever'd go into you.

3 red bastard chillies - for the heat - kinda numbs your throat and makes your nose run
1 head of garlic - natural antiviral, natural antibiotic
3 inch length of fresh ginger - good for fever
Tablespoon of dried fenungreek - excellent for cattarrh

Leave the fenungreek seeds as they are and chuck em in a pot whihc you birng to the boil. Peel, cut grate all the rest of the above. or smite it to gobbets as they used to say in middle english.
chuck in saucepan with water and boil up, boil down and simmer for a bit. Not too long or the fenungreek goes bitter, meanwhile squeeze as many elmons as you can.

Mix lemons with tea. Add some Senega and ammonia mixture (also great expectorant)
Feed this to the poor sick sod you are looking after. Enjoy you role as the sadistic nurse or add some honey or scotch to help wash it down.

Actually if you are sick and alone - you deserve the recipe below.

go to supermarket and buy one bottle of instant lemon squeeze, one bottle of buderim ginger syrup, on jar of cheap honey, and one bottle of scotch. Mix the first three ingredients with a bit of water and heat in mirowave for 30 seconds. Then add a good splash of scotch, go to bed, read some trash and fall asleep.