Tag Archives: Children

Childhood Friendship

What’s Your Most Cherished Earliest Memory?

I read this wonderful blog piece earlier today for work, and there was this interesting suggestion for Blog Writer’s Block that caught my eye (among the mammoth 150 or so odd suggestions for overcoming it).

The writer, Devin Burglund, suggested that you write about your earliest memory. So I thought I’d improvise … naturally. Because I like making things a little more difficult than they have to be, obviously.

One of my earliest, most cherished memories was when my very first crush, this absolute hottie (I was six by the way), a Colorado native at the British Continental School we both attended in Jeddah, Middle East told me he liked me. Trust me, even till this day, I still (as embarrassing as it sounds) get butterflies fluttering in my stomach when I think back to that hot sunny afternoon.

Had I known then that age and maturity would bring the awkwardness and fear of rejection, consequences and all the other unimportant and insignificant attributes it does, I would have savoured that innocent childhood moment when we didn’t care about what others thought about us, or before we had the experience and knowledge of annoying adult idiosyncracies so much more.

I lost touch with Jerome Douglas Noble but I’ve never forgotten the joy he gave me that day. I hope it was as sweet for him as it was for me and I like to flirt with the fantasy that he seldom thinks of me and that my memory brings a hint of a smile to his slightly twitching lips.

What about you? What’s your favourite memory?

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We ARE better than this, Australia …

I had a GREAT awakening this morning, I always feel buoyed by examples of people power. Gives me that warm, fuzzy rumbling feeling in my insides that accompanies true hope for the future.

Australians are proud of their renowned charitable nature which is why I am constantly left scratching my head in my perplexed inability to comprehend where that “true blue” Aussie spirit has gone when it comes to refugees and most importantly, children in detention centres.

Children don’t care about boundaries, or race, or religion, or political gain. Children believe in true freedom, imagination, wishes becoming reality – everything all of us adults should sincerely trust in if we ever want to experience that elusive emancipation we are constantly sprinting after.

Which is why I cast my vote in at http://wbttaus.org/.

As an Aussie, you can do it too, as a citizen of the World you can do it to, as a human being – you can do it too.

You never EVER stop learning!

This statement never hits harder than when I speak with kids (or hear stories about them).

My mum, who is the Head Teacher of the Early Childhood wing at TAFE/Director of the Early Childhood Centre as well as a Professor in Early Childhood studies at the University of Western Sydney, Australia, told me about a conversation she had with four year old Joel one morning.

Mum: What’s the matter Joel, you look unhappy?

Joel: I am not in a good mood.

Mum: Oh, did you get out from the wrong side of the bed this morning?

Joel: Well that’s a silly question. There’s only one side of my bed so how am I supposed to get out from the wrong side of it? Adequate roll of large blue eyes in obvious disdain for adults incomprehensive and useless queries.

😀 😀 😀

Why Writers shouldn’t end up with one another …

Okay, so we’re constantly being told about how it’s nice to end up with someone on the same page as you, you know, so you can share your trials and tribulations of a hard day’s work with that special someone.

If you’re a teacher, why wouldn’t you want to come back home and explain how you just received a letter from that student who you thought was your best one yet outlining twelve possible reasons why he wants to kill you slowly and meticulously? On the other hand, as a Doctor, what could possibly be better than coming back home after an arduous twelve hour shift and sharing why that patient you “accidentally” left a pair of scissors in after slicing them open is going to sue you for everything you got?

Hey, at least your partner’s got your back, right? Plus, as an added bonus in the Doctor’s case, your divorce hearing is going to be short and sweet.

Even if you can’t quite wrap your brainy tentacles around why anyone on earth would ever want to get with someone who is most likely to have had exactly the same day as you (unless you are truly aiming for the award for the most boring life ever, then please go ahead), there are some absolutely undeniable facts as to why writers should stay clear of one another – at least in the “relationship” field:

1. Every time your partner politely asks you to go shopping, frantic alarm bells ring uncontrollably in your head because you know the shopping list is going to read like a novel and the last 24 hour Walmart in your area has a restraining order out on you because you never leave the premises. Seriously. It’s not your fault; it just took you that long to get through the list, that’s all.

2. Your children end up falling asleep before you get through the first line of a bedtime story because you and your partner are too busy discussing the appropriateness of commencing a fable with “Once Upon a Time”. You’re still discussing how Snow White taking an apple from the Evil Queen (and anyway – who would fall for that pathetic disguise in the first place?) is not realistic enough considering all the “Stanger Danger” lectures out there when your kids wake up in the morning.

3. A surprise ending is always so predictable because you understand the way your partner’s mind works for a climatic end. They wine and dine you and it’s already playing out in your head because you’ve been editing their novels for as long as you can remember. The only move that may shock you – the “you’ve been served” rendition when the postman hands you your “out of the blue” divorce request. To top it all off, instead of being devastated, you’re proud of them and you ring them up to say that that elusive cliff-hanger ending they’ve been working so hard to achieve is in the bag, baby!

4. Your partner cooks you (or at least what you believe to be) a subliminal inducing dinner and you are unable to give them false criticism because you take your role as a critic very seriously but you still want to be encouraging about the devastation anyway and end up saying “It’s nice honey. I mean it’s no Pulitzer Prize but just keep at it, You know, practice does make perfect. No matter how impossible it may feel right now. To both of us”.

5. Wait though. There’s more. The most devastating result of ending up with another writer. Your children have been so severely traumatised by having to grow up in a household with two people who believe everything they do (including the act of breathing) should be penned down, when career day comes around, they finally build up the courage to tell you, wait for it – they want to be Doctors!

Now what could possibly be worse than that? It’s settled, you’ve officially failed as parents.

On the bright side though, you may finally have that tragedy you’ve been meaning to write for years but haven’t been buoyed adequately enough for by that gut wrenching experience you absolutely need to feel in order to do so. Nobel Laureate in literature – here I come!

Could we be any more screwed?

A lot has happened in the World this week, as it does every week.

We’ve had a Soccer World Cup finish, Australian Swim Legend Ian Thorpe has come out as being gay, a few choice celebrities (no names being mentioned) have gone around doing what they do best, being social misfits and poor examples of role models for those who tinker on their seats edges wondering what their next moves are going to be, and something else I quite can’t recall. It’s on the tip of my tongue, so I’m guessing it’s semi important?

Oh that’s right, that little pesky thing the World is snappily entitling The Gaza Strip. Maybe not as catchy as Brangelina, but then again, it isn’t quite as important either, is it?

I mean how could an entire nation of people in devastating upheaval and pain, a clear brazen example of genocide occurring under our very noses in the twenty first century, a blatant demolishing of the very concept of human rights, truly compare to whether Germany actually deserved to take home the inanimate Gold Cup, the gender Ian Thorpe chooses to spend his private life and nights with, and whether Justin Bieber’s crotch shot was a misguided PR stunt? The answer is simple, it can’t.

It’s not bedazzling enough for all of us, sitting here comfortably in our arm chairs in our own little private havens with our fingers securely brushing our remote controls ready to tap the buttons lightly to change the channel every time a haunting image of what’s occurring in the Middle East has the audacity to interrupt our lives and assault our screens. I mean, how dare they? It’s happening a world away, why should I care?

I’m not here to make a statement on who’s right or wrong in this war occurring on the same planet we all share, but what I am incensed about is our extreme powers of “de-sensitsation”.

Who’s right or wrong is hardly significant really, what does matter though is the mammoth loss of life that the rest of us couldn’t care less about. I am met with a lot of anger and opposing comments every time I dare to broach this subject, you know the kind – scathing hate like “Why should we interfere?”, “They don’t want us to get involved”, “It’s their problem, not mine”, “If they’re too stupid to understand, that’s their fault”, and the undulating list rolls on.

Hailing from a nation that prides itself on never having invaded another’s home, I couldn’t agree more. The rest of us shouldn’t interfere, because the message that gives is that we don’t think you’re civilised enough to deal with this problem on your own, but how does that justify turning a blind eye to the pain and misery of our fellow brothers and sisters?

How does understanding, making our children aware of what seething animosity results in so that they learn that war and inflicting torture on one another is not the solution, not make this world and our conjoined futures better? How does not teaching one another that no matter what our creed, caste, and colour, that we share our basic human emotions of grief, agony and turmoil at losing a father, a mother, a brother, or sister and our children, not be an absolutely imperative lesson to study for all of us?

Is the media to blame? I think this is far too simplistic and just another brazen example of ‘passing the buck’, shifting responsibility onto someone else humans so easily partake in to feel better. As hungry devourers of news, why do the people so often forget that the real power lies firmly enclosed in our palms? The fact that you chose to click on the photograph brazenly displaying one of the Kardashian sister’s blaring bikini clad behind more than the one that excruciatingly portrays a mother’s incomparable desperate desolation at the loss of a child as she clutches her daughter or son’s lifeless, dismembered body to her bosom, begging for it all to stop while she cradles them both into oblivion, dictates what the media gives you.

It’s time we take a little bit of time out of our busy reality television watching schedules and participate in a little reality check of our own. Try and think about how it would feel to be in the middle of that tumultuous turbulence and what you’d experience if you truly believed you were all alone and that no one else cared enough to think, even in fleeting, about how your life was worthless.

This world is never going to improve if we don’t stop for a moment and think “what am I doing to make this better?” Make your voices heard people, the powerful in our society don’t own half as much as you believe they do and they know it. They’re just waiting for you to fight for your basic human right to tell them that.