Monday, April 30, 2007

we all make mistakes

Not long after starting this blog I was trawling the net one night when I came across a site called Write a Prisoner. I've had a fascination with life behind bars for a long, long time. And yes, as anyone who knows me (or has read enough of drift) will tell you, it was probably triggered by watching the Aussie drama Prisoner when I was a kid. Incidentally, I think I'm the only viewer who was annoyed when the so-called "spin-off" series Punishment was axed after just a few months on-air. (I'm not even going to bother adding a link, it was so bad, but I was still dismayed). I have this thing for the underdog and for Justice. These notions have probably always been in me, but weren't given a context until Prisoner came along. It also coincided with my second year at High School when I began to view students as voiceless entities downtrodden by their teachers (except the occasional good ones). This, in turn, was also happening around the time of Pink Floyd's hit Another Brick in the Wall. I joined the Student Rep Council and decided to fight for student rights, though, really there wasn't much to fight for at suburban Croydon High School circa 1979. When I reached my final year of High School in 1983 I was given permission to go inside Fairlea Women's Prison to meet with a young inmate and discuss her life, which I then wrote about for an English paper. My only subsequent glimpse of life on the inside since then has been as a tourist when I visited two former correctional facilities - Alcatraz in 1984 and Pentridge (Melbourne) on the day Princess Diana died (1996?). And of course I watch stuff like documentaries and dramas on telly...

From time to time I wonder what it must really be like to be locked up. I wonder how I'd cope, what I'd do to survive and what chance I'd have to remain unscathed by incarceration. I wonder about rehabilitation and how it could work better. And many other thoughts besides. So when I discovered the Write a Prisoner site and read some of the ads on there I decided to write a letter. I never mentioned it (to anyone) at the time because I wanted to see where it would lead me first. Well, I wrote to a young gay prisoner who was in jail for vehicular manslaughter. I never heard back and after a few months I pretty much forgot about it. Then last week as I was trawling the net once again I visited Denys over at Homo Homo Sapien and found he had linked to a newly discovered blog by Marc Olmsted. I started reading and was fascinated. First of all I was delighted to find a person who cares about the planet and actually gets off his arse to do something about it. Then I went to the Archives and started reading Marc's amazing account of his life as a prisoner. I spent two consecutive evenings spellbound by what I read. I laughed and I cried and I kept on reading. I've still got plenty more to go (Marc's been writing his blog since 2004), but it's a journey I'm eager to continue. Last night I wrote to Marc to tell him of my reaction to his words and the powerful effect they/he had on me. Then I got onto that Write a Prisoner website again and found a guy whose name I'd noted during my first look all those months ago, but who I never wrote to. I posted a letter to him today.

If you're feeling a bit fed up with your life, if you want a whopping great dose of humanity or just a bloody amazing read go n check out Marc's blog for yourself. Thank you Denys for leading me to something wonderful or, as I said in my email to Monsieur Olmsted, something re-marc-able

Thursday, April 26, 2007

par avion

Apparently dumped Immigration Minister Amanda Vanstone has been posted to Italy. I wonder how many stamps they needed (and where they stuck 'em) yuk yuk yuk. Pity she wasted all those tax payer dollars learning Mandarin when she could've been learning Eye-tally-arno. Anyway, if she's been posted by someone from her former department she could end up anywhere... ciao bello... er bella

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

mod cons

It's time to come clean
It's time to confess
There's something about me
I bet you can't guess

It's not that I'm lazy

Or behind in the rent
It's not that I'm anal
(Or what some would call 'bent')

Who cares if I'm messy
Or I blaspheme and curse
According to some folk
This is really much worse

Friends offer to help me
And although very kind
They just waste their breath
Coz I won't change my mind

I'm used to the strange looks
When people discover

I'm not like the rest

I'm one of those "others"

I have an aversion
To a thing all the rage

Which makes me quite odd

In this day and age

So call me a Luddite

But the truth must be known

I don't have, need or want
A mobile bloody phone

Sunday, April 22, 2007

all i recall/this is cereus

Well it's taken just over a year, but I've had my first blog-related dream. I was reading my blog at some house where I was staying for a few daze and I noticed there were three new posts - none of which I'd seen before. Someone must've broken into drift, but who could it be? I figured it was Sheila from My Arms Fold Back. All I recall of the three new posts was one about finding a new job (I am looking). I'll let you know if it happens... Also featured in the dream was an ex-boss I wrote about once upon a time in a coincidence file > post. I was staying at her house and chopping vegetables in bed, but she'd already chopped enough for dinner and didn't need any more so I started eating them (carrots if you must know). Then she wanted some advice about something or other, which I was happy to provide. Hmmm

Meanwhile, over in the Tea Room Miss Litzi n I have been chatting about stuff we find in the garden. I have a mystery succulent in my backyard, which blooms the most beautiful, intricate white flowers once a year at night. I was away this year when it bloomed so came home to the spent remains, but with the help of "the Google" I've managed to find a picture (and a name).

Ladies & gentlemen, introducing the Cereus something-or-other:

From this to this:

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

man bag

Somehow I missed a crucial part of Prison Break (either tonight or last week). So can someone please tell me where the creepy n malevolent Theodore 'T-Bag' Bagwell has gone? He's such a scumbag I can't help but be attracted to him. Played with exquisite sleaziness by the talented and compelling Robert Knepper, last time I saw T-Bag he'd managed to escape his captors (yet again) then track one of 'em down at a hotel to reclaim the stash of cash they'd tried to swindle him out of. But how'd he manage to get himself free? (I know I said he's compelling, but I missed that bit too). Did he cut his own hand off?

I saw Robert Knepper interviewed last year (must've been for the "Making of" special) and I was so taken by him and how different he is to the character he plays. (Yeah, I know he's an actor, but still - with some TV performers there's not that much difference). Tonight when I was checking his list of screen credits on imdb I discovered he'd also been in Carnivale. I was impressed by him in that too, but had no idea it was the same actor.

So, please, can anyone help out and fill me in? I'll be very grateful, but a word of warning, if they've killed him off I don't wanna know...

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

hotter than a pepper sprout

It's time we had some fun...

I love YouTube! I can spend hours searching for songs to play, there's so much to choose from. Last night I watched a couple of Nancy Sinatra clips for These Boots Are Made For Walking, which I was originally going to post for you, but I couldn't make up my mind which version I liked best (fabulous '60s choreography in both) so here's Jackson instead. My Mum has a great vinyl collection and this song was one of my favourites when I was growing up. Mum no longer plays vinyl so sometimes I'll ask her if I can have certain LPs. She usually says yes, but Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood's Greatest Hits was one she wouldn't let me have. (Some years ago she let me have Liza with a Z and still had no idea I was gay). I read recently that once upon a time Nancy had a huge crush on Lee, but it was unrequited. The pair remain great friends though Lee's health isn't so good now. I'd never seen this clip before today. Hope you enjoy it...

Monday, April 16, 2007

Justine Saunders

Sadly, another loss. I've just found out that actress Justine Saunders passed away yesterday. No more suffering, but still far too soon. Thanks for the fun times Justine and the storytelling. You were a pioneering spirit and I'm sorry we never finished what we started...

Sunday, April 15, 2007


Tonight I started searching for images on "the Google" because I wanted to show you an example of the type of advertising that turned me on once I got a whiff of puberty. 'Course the real culprits were those guys in the advertisements, promoting all the usual suspects circa 1979: cigarettes, underwear, chocolate bars and flavoured milk (in no particular order). I'm talking about both in magazines and on the telly. Anywaze, having no luck finding the sort of pic I wanted to show you - and I can't be bothered scanning anything right now (yeah, I do have a stash of '70s & '80s mags; no, they're not pornos) - I then tried to remember who else had stirred my loins back then (other than actors from soapies). A couple of musicians came to mind - pop stars. These were guys that first got me thinking it was weird to think 'like this' about a male - some of my earliest attractions. Interestingly, they were both one hit wonders here in Australia (something I've often contemplated aspiring to). One was a Canadian guy from the brother/sister group Promises (anyone remember the blond?) another was Roger Voudouris.

Roger Voudouris had a hit in Australia with the song "Get Used To It" (which strikes me as very apt as I write this) and is infamous here for his appearance on the ABC's music show Countdown where he sang (mimed?) whilst his long dark locks were blown around by a wind machine (oh it's all in the link, I ain't so lazy after all). I remember it well. I also remember I had a poster of him on my bedroom wall and when friends from school came over to my place I wondered if they'd think anything of it (no one ever said anything). I loved the song and I was very fond of Roger in a secret (love) kind of way...

Tonight I discovered two things. I was pleasantly surprised to learn I was born on the same day (different year) as Roger Voudouris, but sadly - and this really shocked me - I found out he died in August 2003.

Saturday, April 14, 2007


Seems everyone's having a birthday - including drift, which celebrates birthday numero uno today!

I was inspired by three people to begin this blog. Bolton Gray's blog was the first I ever read, Tom Judson's was one blog I stumbled across (via Gus Mattox) and Sheila from My Arms Fold Back started her blog around the time I contemplated creating my own and she urged me to do it (she's always been a few weeks ahead of me, right from birth).

Like a lot of bloggers I wasn't too sure where I was taking this, which is one reason I chose the name drift. I've been keeping journals and diaries for years n years, but I didn't want this to be the same as those. All I knew was I wanted to remain anonymous so I wouldn't be inhibited in what I write. I like the idea of being able to reveal secrets and to be explicit if I feel like it. I've only told three or four people about this blog - others have found it on their own, which is exactly what I was hoping for. And perhaps I should be known as the lazy blogger - I don't even alphabetise my links (crikey, I hardly ever bother to link).

I'm glad I bothered to add a counter. I was pleased to see it reach 1965 today because that's the year I was born and it just seems fitting. I get a buzz out of seeing where in the world people are coming from too. Who knows what they make of it? Doesn't really matter, though I wish a few more readers would leave comments. Don't be shy...

It's been a blessing to "meet" other bloggers. Sometimes I get a lil bit of a crush on them. Words can do that. I'd like to attend a blog-meet, but then there's that question of anonymity. Would I expect people to only call me Nash? Would I then change my style of blogging? (Do I even have a style?). Oh, that's enough.

Thanks to everyone for dropping by. Come on, let's have some cake...

Friday, April 13, 2007

you can exchange the gift if you want to

One of the best things about the world of blogging is the people you randomly "meet". You can start off at one blog and end up somewhere else (sometimes/often?) without knowing how you ever got there. You read a lil bit about what's going on in someone else's life and you get drawn in by the way they express themselves. You find their words or pictures strike a chord and so you check out their interests/favourite movies, music n books etc to learn a bit more. If they don't have a pic of themselves you begin to create your own vision/version of them in your head. You leave comments on their blog and they respond. You both reveal things about yourself that perhaps only close friends know. You sometimes question how your words will be interpreted. When they take a break from blogging you begin to wonder where they are and if they're okay. When they live in another state or another country you wonder if you'll ever meet in the flesh. And when they have a birthday you want to celebrate with them and wish them all the best for the year ahead. So... Happy Birthday Miss Litzi, let's put something naughty in the tea this year and drink to a happy future - have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

my wall

Today I had an appointment in Bondi Junction so I decided to walk there via Centennial Park. I was in need of some nature and I wasn't disappointed. It didn't take long before I heard the raucous laugh of the Kookaburra. There were four of them - 2 in one tree, 2 in another - and their laughter made me laugh. "Gay your life must be" indeed...

There once was a time when I walked from Darlinghurst to Bondi Junction every morning through Centennial Park. I was working in a wonderful bookstore (which is now a Centrelink and is where I ended up when the bookshop closed and we all lost our jobs, ahem) and the 40 minute walk was a great way to start the day. I rarely go to the park these daze, but it's always a treat to stomp around in all that open space.

And now, just for the hell of it, I'd like to show you a picture that caught my eye (and a lil piece of my heart) back in 2000 as the Olympic Games were about to get underway

Taken by Rick Stevens, this pic of sexy Bangarra Dance member Lewis Lampton with the Olympic Arts torch was on the front of the Sydney Morning Herald. I love Lewis... er the pic so much that I cut it out and stuck it on my wall *sigh*

Monday, April 09, 2007

up n down

I was thinking about the ups & downs we all face throughout our lives and how we deal with them. Lately I've been feeling like the boy on this see-saw - more down than up. It's partly because every time I leave Melbourne after a visit I feel very unsettled, but mostly it's because I tend to respond to life's hurdles in a negative way. I know being up n down go hand in hand and we can't have one without the other so the trick to this, like all things in life, is to find balance. My biggest problem is a lack of self-discipline in my personal life (oh, okay, it creeps into my professional life too). My life is very extreme and changes every few months - abundant/poor, motivated/lazy, sober/stoned, slut/celibate, sociable/reclusive, Dolly Parton/er... Dolly Parton.

I feel better already. Look out bunny, the only way for me is UP

I hope you all had a peaceful Easter and saved some of your eggs for 'ron

Friday, April 06, 2007


I haven't really got anything to blog about, but just wanted to let you know I'm still lurking about in cyberspace...

I can hear Paul Simon coming thru on the radio from next door "These are the days of miracle and wonder and don't cry baby, don't cry, don't cry..." which thankfully is a song I like. Some songs heard randomly can lift my spirits instantly. I remember when I was living in Melbourne I was waiting to catch a tram home from the city late one night when a distant busker started playing "Here Comes the Sun" (George Harrison) on his saxophone. It's one of my favourite songs and came at a time when I was in need of some cheering up so I went over and popped a 5er in the busker's bowl. When I hear certain songs I feel everything will be okay...

In other news, I've just returned to Sydney from Melbourne where I spent 2 weeks catching up with friends old and new. Among other things I saw a play, went to the Melbourne Flower & Garden Show, went to St Kilda beach and had a family BBQ at my sister and brother-in-law's place in Lilydale. Oh and I caught up on some sleep
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