The Sound of My Gentle Failure or The Art of My Gentle Revolution part 2: the reckoning

I posted a list a little over a year ago, of things I would attempt to do before I turned the “give up on your teen whims” age of 30. Below are the results. Forgive me.


1. Start dancing lessons– nope. Thought about it a lot, even googled things, but not one. Sigh.

2. Practice self control (particularly as regards eating, spending, wasting and watching)- look. I lost this one for a while. Nearly a year, actually. But, in the last couple of weeks, I’ve been controlling my appetite for the junk food, walking to work and walking other places too. This counts. Money I’m still bad at. Sigh.

3. Bake a Pie– HA! Hahahahaha! I baked TWO! In your face 30!!

Pie the first- pear tart; lumpy yet satisfying
Pie the second- Pecan; possibly ill-advised yet flavoursome

4. Start learning French– je ne comprends pas? Je suis fatigue. Yes these are phrases from a learn French iPhone app. But, if someone French was to ask me- in English- if I would like more food or the cheque, I could respond with l’addition s’il vous plait. Counts.

5. Save money-…. cough. Oh GOD why am I so crap? In my defense, a lot of stuff came up this year that was somewhat unexpected and further to this, I am really really shit with money. I did buy plane tickets to a whole other country for next year, so I’d better figure it out soon.

6. Read at least half of the books currently unread on my shelf and do not purchase new ones until that has happened Secure second bookshelf and make every effort to purchase every book I like, love and think possibly looks interesting or pretty to fill said bookshelf (important caveat, books can be purhased for me)– Doneski.

7. Watch less TV –hmmm. Tricky. I did watch less TV shows actually on the TV set. And I was a whole hell of a lot busier than I have ever been before so I’m going to assume this means I had less time to watch stuff and call this a check.

8. Take more chances – why do I do this? Stupid vague and inspirational goals. How is this quantifiable? Well, I talked to boys I liked, I got my hair cut very short on one side, I submitted pieces of writing to the uni mag Farrago, I wrote honestly and sometimes embarrassingly on my blog, overtook large trucks on a highway and allowed myself to be awkwardly auctioned off for charity. Done? Sure.

9. Give one night a week to writing– straight up, didn’t happen. I did write more… This is something I need to get amongst. Onto it, accountability matrix.

10. Walk daily– Yes! …iiin the last two or three weeks. But I did it before I turned so, counts. Ha.

11. Talk less and listen more– I sort of have this covered on account of my job, although it can be startlingly easy to get through a day at the drop in without having a decent convo. I try to make listening a priority (but could still do with some more work on the “I have the attention span of a spaniel and am frequently caught out not actually listening to my friends” front), and I am finding I’m enjoying it more. I still talk a lot, though. A lot, a lot.

12. Be increasingly comfortable around new people– I think that it’s easier to feel other people will think you’re a freak, if you think you’re a freak. And so conversely, if you git on down with your own unparalleled you-ness and how good that is, then you don’t mind other people copping a load of you. You dig? I’m so at the top of my game (still a ways to go before I’m channeling Beyonce style diva confidence (frankly, I think it would make people uncomfortable (just cos, they’re not used to me being a douche(in that way) and it would definitely come out like that))) in terms of liking Carlynne, which is nice. A few things have fallen into place mentally and that’s really helped, and so I think whilst I can still be intimidated when I meet new people, particularly those of the good looking persuasion, mostly I’m of the opinion that if you’re going to assume someone will think something about you, you may as well assume they’ll think you’re a fucking rad-ball. Or something.

13. Sing frequently– oh man. All the time (In my house, obviously (Possibly to the irritation of my housemates (although my latest, Joe (so excellent) sings actually, ALL THE TIME, ALL THE TIME, which is great and means he can’t be angry about mine, which happens significantly less than his))). I also tried to be put on the singy roster at church, which happened once, and was fun. How good are multi brackets.

14. Take more photos– I took so many photos. Ludicrous, annoying amounts. And I stopped doing my photo a day business, but then I missed it so I started again. More on this later.

15. Catch a barramundi– Alas. I caught no fish this year. I did, however, catch several colds, at least one flu, gastro, and several people’s drifts.

16. Do not use cynicism as a crutch– I feel the annoyingly positive side of me has grown in power and fluffiness this year. Perhaps my cynicism was in my hair, and the shorter it gets, the brighter the bright side. Or, I’ve just been a little happier. –side note, Carlynne, the dark side of the split personality that inhabits my frame, wishes you to know that I am still in the possession of a very healthy portion of cynicism. I just don’t choose to assume the worst when I can about things like religion, other people, and where possible, myself. Still working on assumptions about the state of the government, the state of the environment, certain activists I know, and one of my parents. We’re only human.

17. Throw out one thing a month– yes! (does this count if it was done like, in several big piles scattered throughout the year that surely added up to more than 12 things) (I think it does)

18. Buy clothing and footwear only from vintage/recycled shops where possible– eep. Mostly, yes. Totally beautiful dresses, MIND BLOWING jumpers, even perfect jeans (op-shop holy grail). So much purchased from oppies that I had to impose trade embargoes on myself and Savers. There were exceptions, though, which I feel I was mostly driven to by fat days and wedding attendances. I’m sorry. Honestly.

19. Understand what it means to grow up – I believe I covered this in one of a series of self indulgent word vomits.

20. Eat at this allegedly fantastic Japanese place my mate Brad went mental over– Bam. With two days to go- locked down.

21. Make my blog look a bit nicer- woo hoo! I think it does. I don’t know about the blog fanciness, alright? It’s not my bag. But I gave it a red hot go.

22. Judge less– again. Judge less? Less what? Judge who less? It’s such a subjective, cloudy thing. Look, I generally think that if one of us is shit, then we’re all shit. Because you know and I know, all the shitty things we’ve done and are capable of doing, deep down. So, if I get to walk around and not be kicked in the face or spat on or sneered at or sent to prison or whatever, then I don’t think that I want to do those things to other people. I think I put this in because sometimes I can get all neggo about Christians and socialists, and ladies who wear leggings as pants. And I still do, way more often than I should. But I’m trying not to, and I’m thankfully arriving more often at the conclusion that maybe everyone is at least a little broken, and that compassion doesn’t actually cost me anything, and that everyone can do what the hell they like and it’s not up to me to make decisions about their pants (but seriously, leggings are essentially an undergarment, I’m telling you this for your own good).

23. Send more postcards, inc’ to people I don’t know

I violated several postcards with several cheerful and possibly inane messages several times, then left them to be taken by other folk. Counts.

24. Talk to people I recognise instead of acting like I don’t see them– this has also become easier because of my work, and the fact that I spend a lot of time near where I work. If I see Mr Talks to Himself in the street, or Mrs Smells of Pee, it’s flat out not nice if I pretend I don’t. Plus they’re fun to talk to. And even when they’re not, when I’m tired and I don’t want to “work” it’s easier. I don’t every time, for every person I know, but mostly, and with peeps from other scenes, I say hi.

25. Spend more time chatting with my Grandma– this one is a little rough. She died last month and one of the reasons that is shit for me is because of this list and the fact that I obviously registered a need to do this because maybe she wouldn’t be around forever, and then I didn’t do it. The most I learnt about my Grandma, I think ever, I learnt in the week following her death from talking to my family and watching them bury their mother.

26. Buy film for my polaroid and use it – I tried. It’s sooooo expensive, I just could not justify $40 for like, 8 photos. But, I did buy one of those cool oldie looking plastic cameras and some film to get developed and I will be doing that a lot from now on. Sah Indie.

27. Go out dancing at least once a month– Probs not once a month, but, I have shook what my mama gave me on the dance floor well over 12 times this year at least three different clubs (six or seven times), three houses (three or four times), three different weddings and once, three times in the same weekend.

28. Develop less irritating and useless crushes – don’t even get me started.

29. Attempt to make dolma – just.. just move on.

30. Learn to play that Turin Brakes song/ any song on guitar– what? What do you want from me?! Guh.

31. Figure out how to get around hating on church in general – Bam-a-lam. Covered a little in this entry, and only progressing really. Still a lot about traditional church that doesn’t gel with me, a lot I find extraneous and irrational, but I like mine. Despite the fact that it sort of doesn’t suit me at all. They’re good people, my church.

32. Get to know family I don’t keep in touch with– please to refer to overly long blog post here.

33. Jump out of a plane bed– done! I’m sometimes a lot better at mornings now. Sort of.

34. Take an interest in the world both around me and across oceans and not hide from the truth of it – this actually really happened. This was the year I took larger interest. Fortunately I know a lot of passionate, intelligent and interested people who help me learn and stay involved. My interest has only so far extended to some ABC watching, some reading of news articles and some protest attending, and what I don’t know about could still fill a lot of scarily large books, but I’m not content to not think about thing any more, despite the fact that it’s a giant cesspool of awfulness and mean people and oil-spills and greed out there (I don’t really believe that. Now more than ever I think, I KNOW there is the capacity for GREAT LOVE within people. Yes).

35. Talk to strangers– like a dinner, baby. Plane guy, Irish guy, old lady on tram 1, Irish guy 2, drunk people on street, drunk guy at pub, guy on tram who looked like a bearded Dylan Moran (Oh Lord), old lady on tram 2, drunk Canadians x 2, tram driver, several ladies in ladies bathrooms (you know how that goes), girls on dance floor, dude on tram 2, many café staff and I’m assuming several retail assistants in several workplaces of theirs.

36. Knit things– two parts of scarvey things later, I’m a knitter again. Getting better too. I want to branch into crocheting now. But I won’t like, make a dramatic list about it or nothing.

37. Be kind – who knows. God I hope so. I feel like I like people a lot, and am fortunate enough to keep on meeting them. It’s often hardest to be kind to yourself and those close to you though, and I’m still working on that.

And this of course is the end. I could ad several things to the list that I did do this year, but it’s late and I have even bored myself.

So the tally stands at:

Carlynne- 27 or 25 or 26.5 or something;

Doing Things-10 or so.

Victory is MIIIIINE.


thanks for listening. I promise I’ll never do this again.

3 thoughts on “The Sound of My Gentle Failure or The Art of My Gentle Revolution part 2: the reckoning

  1. Carlynne, your strike rate was waaaay better than mine! I’ve deferred my list to my 40th (O……M…….G!!!!!!!!!!! F-f-f-f-f-f-f-f-foarty!)

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