A Gas Explosion, ASAT Rehearsals & Something is Up (17-23 August)

Monday 17/8/87

Had a really good sleep last night – long! I woke around 9:30 today. (and spent nearly all day in bed anyway). [Still ‘off sick’ from school?] Still didn’t do any of my english assignment ..nor any study for my biology exam. But I’m taking tomorrow off, too: Nana’s funeral is at 10:00 – then at home I’ll have to get myself into gear & really work. [Uh-huh…] I did feel much better today – the chest region is much less blocked & I’m coughing a lot less. I only feel “off-colour” now & then, esp. when I eat, although I do have some sort of appetite back (I’ve lost 2kgs since I got sick!) [Yep, reducing caloric inatke will usually do that…] still can’t believe Mark was “worried” about me. He said that Sunday (after the Smithfield formal party) he couldn’t play baseball, because he was sick with grief at the thought that I’d leave him when I heard about him & Angela. I’m extremely flattered (for once!) [Oh my god.] In a way, it worries me, though. I don’t know if he’s over it yet. [You’re misreading your gut instinct…] BIG gas explosion in town today near Mike’s work – we heard it here!! A Life in Words[Freshwater (where we lived) is approximately 10 kilometres from the explosion site and there’s a mountain range separating them so that’s pretty impressive. (…but what do I know about explosions?) It was the result of an LPG storage unit catching fire and killed one person, injuring twenty-seven. Here’s a link to a public government record of the incident. There’s not a great deal of detail, but the comments provide some perspectives.]

Tuesday 18/8/87

Am feeling much better today. Eating is a bit easier – don’t feel as ill when I eat (ate a lot today!) I still cough – but only ’cause’ of the chest phlem. [Yep, I spelled it wrong] Still, I get very tired. I had to rest a number of times today & actually had a sleep. Nana’s funeral was at 10:00. It was quite short & I didn’t cry. I can’t. Because I’m happier that she’s gone – she’s not in pain ..she’s with grandpa at last, too. [I’d never known my maternal grandfather – he’d passed away during my mother’s childhood.] It’s a little sad thinking about how she was, knowing I won’t see her again, but I’m just glad she’s resting in peace. I just wish she didn’t go out the way she did..that’s the sad part. [I’m not exactly sure what I meant there – whether it was referring to the ‘humiliation’ of being a morphine ‘vegetable’ or the rheumatoid arthritic disease experience as a whole. Either way, the attitude I’d developed towards death is obvious: not afraid of Death itself, but the way in which we meet it. A Life in WordsPrior to the bus accident, I’d always believed the only way to ‘go’ was to pass peacefully in your sleep (being unconscious of it). After the accident, experiencing firsthand the power of Shock; the body’s incredible hormonal response to immense trauma, to ‘thwart’ the conscious Mind, I’ve come to realise that the death experience can be – if not ‘peaceful’ – at least ‘tolerable’ in wider range of scenarios. Nana effectively died peacefully because the morphine interfered (greatly) with her consciousness.] Mark didn’t ring again tonight. I’m sure now something’s still up. I have a strong feeling he’s letting me go (cos he thinks I don’t love him.) He is all I think about! [That ‘strong feeling’? Listen to it.] All the aunts (Joy, Nancy & Ruth) + Cynthia & Dougie stayed all day. Hilary is going home tomorrow: stopping in Brisbane to scatter Nana’s ashes (hopefully with grandpa’s) Is 9:43. Take tomorrow off [school – that’s been quite awhile, now…] to study biol & do my eng. assign. (I’m still too tired in the day to go back) [oh I see…]

Wednesday 19/8/87

What a waste! I’ve written 2 sentences on my assignment & done no biol. study, watsoever! [Surprise, surprise!] A Life in WordsI read Julius Caesar today, but that was about all I did. I’m going to die tomorrow- I’ll be so behind- this weekend I’ll really have to knuckle down & work (HA, HA) [Even I don’t believe myself!] Mr. G will kill me. Oh dear; that’s all I can think about. Auntie Hilary left today (I ate so much today) was rather hot, too. Auntie Joy’s going tomorrow. It looks like we’re off to Brisbane for xmas!! (Great! Hope I can go while mark’s out of town) Wish Fi could come, or something. She’s having trouble with Jemima (it’s got to do a bit with me & everyone really) she’s just sick of all the Grade 12’s. – sitting with Yr 11 girls. Fi came round this arvy to talk – she got her lisense today! Still no call from Mark. Am hesitant about seeing him tomorrow. Will everything be O.K.?? Will have to get up early, I suppose, to do my english. Great. SO DAMNED BEHIND!

Thursday 20/8/87

Got over my assignment hassle O.K (didn’t get it finished – just talked my way out) But was supposed to have it done for tomorrow’s double lesson- & of course just like me, I didn’t bother to do any (any HW for that matter) of it. Will have to wake early tomorrow again to finish it Have only just under one page to write. Barely saw mima or fi for that matter but I know they weren’t together. Had ASAT [Australian Scholastic Aptitude Test] practise tests today. [These national exams are meant to determine each Australian students’ achievement at the completion of secondary schooling. Their applicability is becoming a societal discussion of late.] I only got 15 questions answered, but of those, I got 11 right! (Hope I can do as well, or better in the real ones) [Duh…] Read my ’83 & 84 diaries this arvy – so funny some of the things. [….try reading them in 28 years later!] 10:35 – yet another late nite. I told Jo about Adam M’s friend that likes me & she said “Philip N” I said “WHAT?” she said “He works with Philip..” my god that would be totally incredible. [Obviously I misheard Jo and got excited… a little crush, ya think?] Barely saw Mark at all – talked even less. I’m sure something’s still wrong. A Life in WordsGot Cabaret [Cairns High’s musical for the year] tickets- will pay Nigel tomorrow. Had to do thing about Monique for the Euroka this arvy- (Got photos of my leg too) Nigel read my eng. assign. on her & cried (I got 19/20 for it) [I don’t remember that… jeez, I wish I still had it… as well as all those photos of my leg…] am worried about Mark.

Friday 21/8/87

It’s 11:00. Can’t wait for tomorrow night! Got my english done (not before school as I’d planned, but during my english lesson. OK. finish, not great tho’.) Barely talked to Mark again… I’m positive something’s up: the same something as we talked about? I don’t know, but it gives me the shits. Tried to ring tonight (for once) but he was at Keith’s – too bad! I watched the movie & am now “dead”!! Tomorrow night’ll be ace! Cameron & I fighting in chem – he kicked me in the same place (left shin) 2 times- now I have a very sore lump (egg) [My shins have always been super-sensitive. I bruise really easily everywhere and often don’t know how I get a lot of them, but my shin bones… there’s NO way I’d be clueless about any damage sustained to them…] went into town with Jo & Fi after school …stayed in there for ages- Mr C dropped me home. Looking at all the great clothes (& shoes) in there (drool, drool) P.C.supp. (car) [← but I have absolutely NO idea what this cryptic wording means. I’m wondering if it’s related to the other Phil I had an interest in; Phil C.? Maybe I glimpsed him in a car? Pfft, who knows?] Bludge day, really. Pretty cool weather (about 27ºC) fine (sunny) I eat too much (fattening stuff) Must do lotsa HW tomorrow. Think I know who/that “guy” is. yukky Year 11 CAD guy. (I think that might be him cause I’ve noticed he’s nearly always around) YUKKY Mark, please get over this “phase”… it’s awkward for me. [LOL.] TIRED!

Saturday 22/8/87

A Life in WordsThe day at home was boring .. I listened to records/tapes while doing my art (weaving) – no HW (set HW) done Beautiful weather. . a little cloudy. Fi visited me late this arvy (Mark rang and it wasn’t a good phone call seemed so bored.. I felt really down after it) to borrow my black shirt. My hair was tied in rags [to create the messy wavy-crinkly look that was so hot back then!] (looked funny) Ran late of course: dinner at 7:15 – they came when I was just taking the rags out. CABARET was cool! Mark didn’t seem impressed. In fact he didn’t seem anything. I really don’t know what to do. Anyway I felt sick during last part (after interval) right up until 1:00 or so.. I lay in Fi’s car, then in Peter’s room. [There must have been an after-party…] I’m sure I was just sick from worry about Mark. [That’d be no surprise…] Jason got him to come in & we talked a little.. he thinks nothing’s happening.. so he left the room & I came out soon after .. just as well I did when I did because we left for the St. Monica’s party (Deena B) soon after (& Fiona was gone somewhere…

Sunday 23/8/87

→ I saw her ages later at the party. It was just as boring really. .had to pay for drinks etc (I couldn’t be bothered) I hung around Mark a lot in an attempt to change what has been happening all last week & the week before : that is: nothing. But I still got the feeling he didn’t want me near him. [What a waste of energy] I was especially upset when I showed him some affection & he totally ignored it. I left with Fi, very confused & slightly angry. – very hurt. Got home around 5:30, after hearing about Jo’s, Fi’s, Brendan L’s & Jason’s “problem” [??] wasted the whole day – weeping & thinking about mark. He rung in mid-afternoon. We had a very long D&M (deep & meaningful) was it meaningful? Um, yeah I guess. [….and? what? Clearly no resolution…] Tania visited just a few minutes ago (holidays from uni …didn’t know what to say) […well your sociability would have been compromised by your emotional state…] mark’s going through a “nonchalant” phase: not caring about anything. A Life in WordsI’ll just have to sit it out .. be patient as always. & hope it’ll pass soon. We talked a lot about breaking up & that worries me. [It must have been my tenacity, my resolve to not be ‘the ‘bad guy’ – the one to call it quits. I mean, it’s as obvious as a punch in the face that he wanted out, surely? I was clearly gullible, but not stupid.] NITE.

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Cheerleading at the Foot’s Cup & ‘The Best Time of My Life’ (27 July-2 August)

Monday 27/7/87

Good day. I’m so excited about the formal now. Had our last dance practise tonight and I’ve pretty well got the knack of the 5 dances we’ve learnt. Mark was away today (from school, that is) [um, what else, if not school?] – very tired. Slept thru’ till about 4th period → 11:30, or so!!!!) Had dogshit on my shoe in chemistry – shit it stunk! Yukky! Told Fi all about Saturday night & Sunday morning . . the things we talked about Sat. nite, especially. So tired!!! Mr Grossetti finally back at school. Did no HW again. SHiT, I’m BAD. After school, went around trying to get a maths textbook. [We must’ve needed a different/new one for the final semester?] NOWHERE!!! Must get Mark to take me to get one from school- I don’t know where. [There was a second-hand ‘book shop’ at school but it was located in an area I didn’t ‘frequent’. It was almost dungeon-like; on the ground level of one of the main (oldest) buildings in the school.] Went to Mark’s place, on way home and dropped off his bowtie A Life in Words(wasn’t home – gone to Edge Hill school to play footie) He rang me anyway! After dance practise (we got on very well!) Sharon rang. Gonna organise getting to FOOT’S CUP Game on Wed. nite. YAY, YAY, YAY! [The Foot’s Cup was an inaugural, ‘unofficial’ rugby league game which I’d thought only involved Cairns High and Saint Augustine’s College, but my research (asking the question on Facebook!) seems to indicated that it may have also included Trinity Bay High, although no one seems certain. Suffice to say, it was a footy game between our school and some other one …and therefore a social event. In 1986 it was definitely against ‘Saints’ because I literally mentioned it; see Wednesday’s entry in this post ….Unless that wasn’t actually the Foot’s Cup?!]

Tuesday 28/7/87

Am bugared! Did no HW again, although I was more motivated tonite, than I ever have been since the start of this semester. [Quite an ironic position to be in, really… the ultimate in procrastination: motivation married with inaction] After school went & had my leg photographed, [unfortunately I don’t have these photographs. If they were actually in the case file I received after its conclusion, I must have (sadly) misplaced them] then off to look for Maths textbook. HOPELESS- none left anywhere in town. Will have to ring about a secondhand one. A Life in WordsFOOT’S CUP Game tomorrow night & I’m going to cheer-lead too! (Linda dropped out) FUN, FUN, FUN! [Ok so, cheerleading Cairns-style in the 80’s was nothing like your modern fanfare: in fact, it didn’t much resemble the cheerleading style we perceived from American movies and TV shows back in the day either. It was, shall we say, not terribly well organised and certainly nowhere near as physically complex or demanding…] Got on v. well with Mark today- it’s good now that I’m his friend, more. Esp. in biol… I sat with him while he talked to Duane, Alan, and them (something I wouldn’t’ve done before) [So timid around the male species. I’d had minimal association with them for most of my life, to date.] But I’m so (well not “so”) relaxed now. [Honesty!] Jo was away. [This indicates to me that we were starting to build a deeper friendship. While we definitely weren’t as close as I’d been with Monique, Jo and I had begun hanging out a bit and she was definitely becoming one of my ‘besties’.] Can’t wait for the formal. I’m so tired; is 9:45. Punish myself with late nights. MUST get a move on, concerning work. [yeah, yeah…] Weather’s warming up again. (POOPY!!) Freddie [my current chosen pseudonym for menstruation] finally. Good, but bad. Oh well.

Wednesday 29/7/87

SO tired. FOOT’S CUP was postponed till Friday night instead. But I went with mum to pick up Julia & Petra from the Smithfield Musical at the Civic Centre. So it’s 10:55 now. God, I’m stuffed. Need more sleep: got new bras this arvy : a strapless one which is useless under my dress→ it shows out the top – mum’s taking it [the dress, not the bra!] back to Mrs E to get elastic put in – it’s too loose around the top. Boring day. I hate school. Haven’t got Freddie. Don’t know what [is going on]! Mark hasn’t bought the formal tickets yet→ leaving it late! His mum Bought him a pair of black socks so he won’t need mine. The black gloves in Val Carnes aren’t there: this arvy I went in…she rang [another store, down] south & they said they’re short ones, after all that! So said I could borrow hers. Rang her tonite but she wasn’t home at all. Will have to ring early tomorrow. [I’ve now ascertained that she most likely didn’t really want to loan my her own pair, and to be honest I completely understand why – teenagers represents a certain degree of risk, especially in a ‘social’ context (read: partying). Would she see her gloves again and if so, in what condition would they return? It’s a valid assumption, yes?] Am getting excited! I’m gonna [CRASH] !! A Life in Words[←this was meant to be ‘boxed’ (see pic) It’s sometimes hard to recreate a few of my diary elements.]

Thursday 30/7/87

God, I’m a glutton for punishment! It’s 10:21. why do I have such late nights (& never do any HW?) Tomorrow will be fairly late, too. Wonder if I can sleep in tomorrow. Made my necklace today (tonight) is fairly good! [Haha, that’s right! I couldn’t afford to buy an actual diamonté (it was all the rage at the time) necklace, so created my own from some diamonté dress ‘trimming’…you can kind of see it in my formal photos below.] Got my gloves this arvy.. not Val Carne’s tho’ ..she couldn’t find hers [!! I’m sure!]-I bought a pair of elbowlength [no typo; it appears as one word in my diary] white ones from the bridal shop in Andrejek’s Arcade. [Apologies to the Andrejics family for my ‘phonetic’ spelling…] will have to dye them. Also, as we’d dropped my dress in, in the morning, we picked it up this arvy – has elasticised top now – stays up better. Love it! Am so excited! Mark hasn’t got tickets yet. Uh-oh! Were a bit untalkative today – barely saw each other at all. God I’m tired! Sports Day tomorrow. Ugh! Am starting to eat again ..craving chips, esp. A Life in WordsAlso chocolate & ice cream (fruit icecream though; those FRUITO’S) [I think I meant ‘Weis’ bars…] So now it’s 10:30. Forgot to make an appointment with Annette [my hairdresser] Shit. Bet she’s booked out. I’m Dead! […tired, I expect that is. Not ‘dead’ because I failed to make my hair appointment. I’m not that much of a drama queen…?]

Friday 31/7/87

I’m really excited now! The sports day wasn’t too bad.. I got burnt- but not painful. It should fade enough for tomorrow night: copped a bit for being strapless etc, [really?] but who gives a ? [atta girl!] My face is quite red-I’m hoping that will fix. Fairly clear skin. Have hair appoint. at 8:30 tomorrow (will go all morning, Annette said!) Tully just beat Bruce today. [Our school sports houses: I was in Bruce. Your ‘house’ was determined by the complex system of …alphabetising surnames.] Auntie Hilary’s here! [I now know why: my grandmother was starting to fall seriously ill – she had been moved from her retirement village unit to the nursing area and was pretty much bed-ridden. It’s strange how little awareness we have in our youth …or is it just self-absorption?] Mark’s got the tickets – he was just giving me shit! [ah yeah… no surprises there. Remember that stuff about whingeing in the past couple of weeks? You virtually asked for ]  So hot today – unbelievable! Briefly saw Nana after school (& then Annette) Got ready in a rush ; (after tonnes of phone calls) picked up Sharon & Justine. Felt very self-conscious about my leg [the visibility of my scar]→ wore leggings tucked up like bicycle shorts [Even though my scar was exposed every day at school, the conspicuousness of a cheerleading role would’ve made me more aware (fearful) of (greater numbers of) others observing (and therefore potentially scrutinising) it …or me.]→but had great fun although CHS lost. Mark left just before the end – said he’d ring. God tomorrow’s gonna be so busy! CAN’T WAIT! Definitely a Red letter day: wish Monique was here to share it. Is 10:15. So much for an early night. Hope I can get 10hrs anyway. Probly not. [Psssh!]

A Life in Words
…after the ‘failed’ professional hairdo…

Saturday 1/8/87

Woke early (angry!! Why can I never sleep in when I need to? SHIT!) Went to the hairdresser’s – washed hair …set in rollers & under the dryer for ages. It was REVOLTING when she’d finished. I faked a grin & left. At home I pulled it apart. YUK. [Yep, I definitely threw a tanty at home…] Did nothing in particular before starting to get ready (properly). I mean I dyed my gloves again (cause they only went dark grey) and things like that. Mark rang. Talked about nothing in particular I rang him. No one can come except Dad & Auntie Hilary to see me dressed. Nana’s too sick & Uncle Mike & Cynthia are in Brisbane. Oh well. [There’s a hint of exhibitionism…] It’s only 3:14. Next time I write’ll be tomorrow. Bye! (Wish me luck & a good time- I’m so excited!!!) [I didn’t actually leave a space in my diary, just followed straight on. This became an occasional habit, especially when I knew I’d be too late or tired to make the entry when I got home: writing an initial entry, in order to reduce the mental effort required to recount everything on the following day. I actually find myself doing this on an almost regular basis these days, simply to lessen my nighttime ‘duties’ …to get to sleep sooner!]

A Life in Words
Here’s the full outfit. So very… 80’s. There are no other words for it.

Well Hi. I’m so tired! Let’s see: Amanda came up shortly after I finished writing earlier, I assume]. I started getting ready around 4:15 -a lavender bath – everything planned. A slight rush towards the end ..with my hair & make-up; [beautiful blue eye shadow – blech!] Dad got photos. Mark came after 2 photos, saw Nana (she’s really not good at all) [We’d arranged to call into the nursing home so Nana could see me in my ‘glory’; to witness one of her grandchildren’s rites of passage. As I write this, I must admit sadly that as far as I can remember, this was the last lucid visit I had with her.] Mark was uncomfortable, I could tell. After photos at his place, picked up Steve & Sue & drove round for a while till 7:30. Inside, sat & drank 2 glasses horrible wine (on my empty stomach) and got happy. [See, now that would be an absolute impossibility these days: Liquor Licensing would have shut that venue down immediately for allowing even one drop of alcohol being within the reach of ‘minors’. There are incredibly huge penalties now for venues and even individuals (yes I believe that includes parents) caught supplying alcohol to the under-aged. I think on the night we were permitted one glass each and I might’ve ‘scored’ my second from someone who didn’t want theirs.] Walking round talking to people, having photos taken, even dancing. I was really happy (in all senses of the word) Phillip N gave me a compliment (not to me tho’ .. Fi overheard him say it→ I was so […next page…]

Sunday 2/8/87

excited. Steve & I went to the Pacific to find Mark & Sue, at one stage. Lotsa photos, talking, hugging, dancing (not any of the dances we learnt, did I do!! There weren’t enough opportunities to, anyway) Walked to Keith’s after.. Mr B took me, Sue, Cameron, Seigi & Nicole to the party after stopping at my place to pick up my gear. I changed at Jo’s & skulled 2½ cups of punch. Stood very happy talking, hugging, eyeing off Philip N & Mark. It was a letdown, really. [Privacy omission] The formal was by far the best part. The best time of my life. I’m not joking. Ended up leaving around 3:30→ slept at Keith’s – Nicole, me, him & Mark (←very drunk) [It’s interesting, considering my ‘issues’ with Nicole, that I hadn’t commented about this… I mustn’t’ve felt as threatened?] woke around 10:00 – but dozed till 11:30. Breakfast at 12:00. They took me home at 1:00, or so & I did nothing for the rest of the afternoon, Amanda came up & we all laughed heaps. Uncle Mike came for tea. It’s 8:50 Wanna get good sleep tonight. God it was EXCELLENT. Wish I could do it all over again. I got so many compliments- I felt pretty (esp. with a guy like Philip N noticing me!!) [It’s unfortunate that our positive self images often rely upon the opinions of others, isn’t it?] CANNOT WAIT for the photos to be developed. CANNOT WAIT! Only wish Moni had been there. [Naturally.] Then it would have been complete. (Cameron does too, I’m sure)

Exam Fails, Crinkle Perms & Florence Nightingale (8-14 June)

Monday 8/6/87

Well, it’s 8:55 and I have not quite finished my biology study. Almost, though. I have done no chemistry or history of art study; so I’ll fail for sure. Did nothing besides study today (except break for a walk to the shop with Jules this arvy) But the reason I didn’t get all done was because I mucked around doing little things; wasting time. [Procrastination. It’s my forte.] sunny today. Am tired, but had 9hrs sleep last night. Wonder what time mark will get home tonight? I don’t think he’ll go to school tomorrow. Oh, these bloody exams! 3 tomorrow.. there’s no use. I’ll fail! Been thinking a fair bit (not much) but; I think Mark does get bored with me. I really do. Sometimes. I think he’s sick of me, or he’s afraid to spend time alone with me. I don’t know. I’d love to talk with him again, soon. A Life in Words(Fat, fat, fat! I ate a lot of crap today) Julia & I had a 100’s & 1000’s fight. YUKKY!

Tuesday 9/6/87

Ha, ha, ha! I failed chem. for sure.. could not do one thing (well that’s a lie: I got Q1 right!) But my bio study paid off!! I found (an otherwise hard) test easy . . and Hist. of art – I fluked (& cheated just a little) that will be easy enough to pass. So that was my day, really. Mark didn’t come, as I’d thought.. Keith told me he said at night “Wish I was home ..missing Elissa”. How beautiful! […hmm, how gullible…] I rang him (during dinner – so rang back ∼15 mins. later) barely talked at all – disappointing. [Not missing you so much now, huh?] He sounded tired. I’m glad he’s back. That’s 5 days I haven’t seen him. Oh, I thought I’d never make it! This arvy Cameron was at his dad’s – driving! (went past our house at least 10 times!) FUNNY!! Hotter, finer today. Wore my hair “crinkled” to school – twisted sections [and tied with rags, see the pic to left for an idea] last night- slept with them & this morning my hair was crinkly! Wore it in a piggy tail – looked horrible down, A Life in Wordsbut now it’s died down a bit .. looks good .. gives my hair lots of body. Am thinking of getting my hair crinkle-permed now! [Noooo! Perms are bad enough, let alone ‘crinkle’ …ugh, you just said it “looked horrible down”!] Skin is clearing up fast, too!

Wednesday 10/6/87

Well, Mark was very quiet today ..bored, he said. [And we all know what I would have been thinking, after Monday’s rumination…] So I didn’t talk to him very much… biology before art… big lunch, then a little at weight training (speaking of which, at aerobics I felt so good! Excellent workout! Sweaty, but I felt no aching or fatigue after it – just hot.) [See? It really isn’t that hard to make fitness gains.] Mark rang me tonight, however, and we talked a lot about careers, ambitions etc. he wants me to spend nights at his place on the holidays (if he doesn’t go to Brisbane – hope he doesn’t.) Wonder if ..if I’ll take the plunge? Go all the way? I’d like to, but it’s complicated [of course. And scary.]. .anyway. . I’ve done no HW: and my bio assignment is due tomorrow I’ll have to make it up & write it tomorrow. I’m riding tomorrow.. I think; mum bought me a padlock for my chain. A Life in WordsI’ll ride on my own; I don’t care – I need the exercise …I’m almost 65kg. That’s terrible! [Yes, disgusting! After all, at 176cm in height, that means you’re almost exactly in the middle of the Normal/Healthy Weight Range. Pffft.] I have to lose 10kg for the formal! (And for Mark) & the holidays!! [Isn’t it sad how susceptible we are to socially-imposed ideals? Or more accurately, that our Ego-based self-image can be so …weak? How did I think emaciating myself would enrich my experience at the formal? And would that really make my boyfriend love me more? (From memory he never once referred to my body in a negative context.) I can’t even begin to fathom what I thought losing weight ‘for the holidays’ would yield…] Oh I’m tired.. but can’t sleep in: it’s annoying. Got chem. mark – 6/30 TERRIBLE. Must spend a lot more time on chem. & maths… chem, mostly. have got to do well. [Ha!]

Thursday 11/6/87

I rode! Left at 8:15 (heaps of head-wind; shit!) got to school about 8:35! :Hot & sweaty & very “drained” of energy (tired) Mark came late. We got on quite (very) well today! My painting of him is (believe it or not) progressing very well! A Life in Words(ie: it’s not half bad) – in fact I’m bloody proud of it! He has not much comment on it! [Uh-huh. I can sort of imagine some reasons why…] After school, I waited for him at our area (giving my bag to mum) with Cameron: then we went to the bike racks- not there either. .walking back Mr. Stopford said he & Steven were in the gym. Cameron & I stayed (waiting) for about 30 mins ..then left (Mark & Steven kept playing & playing..) [playing and playing what?] Fairly speedy (hot!) ride home. Rang him tonight & we talked for ¾hr. Going to see Burglar tomorrow night. he said he would stay at my place on the holidays! (he’s not going to Brisbane – yay!!) WOWEE! Oh, I’m tired. Maths exam Tuesday, then eng then bio ..then chem (ugh!) then HOLIDAYS HOORAY!! Holidays soon! And I can’t wait! SO tired.

Friday 12/6/87

Got to school-Mark was sick. Barely talked to me before school.. double eng. boring & set ..he nicked off somewhere (Coles) with Steven during little lunch & didn’t talk to me at big lunch. I wondered if he really was sick ..sick of me only. [Definitely the theme for this week…] But after school, he said he’d ring me. I had to go by bus- just the afternoon I need mum to pick me up & she doesn’t: I had a gigantic masonite board with my painting paper taped to it, to take home. Ugh! Very tired today. My art (Mark is O.K. but I don’t know how to improve on it – what to do next – I’ve worked on his skin (facial tones) a lot & I’m afraid I’ll overdo it – but it looks a lot like him. Must get it finished.) [With an eye for detail, much of my art leaned towards ‘Photo-Realism’…] when Mark rang, we talked a little – it’s a headache – on & off again, but intense when “on” [oh.. talking about his sickness… I thought for a second this was a general comment on our relationship!] we decided no movies. And I went to his place. And played “nurse” & “maid”. A Life in Words[So totally NOT what you’re thinking!] Took him Mersyndol & by 10:00 he was drowsy. I left arond [not a typo; an actual spelling error that appears in my diary.] 10:30 – a little disappointed he was still in such a poor condition – so hot & very tired. I liked “comforting” him – like to do that whenever he’s sick in the future. [The ‘Florence Nightingale’ aspect of my persona…]

Saturday 13/6/87

A wasted day. I woke (very angrily) at 7:30 and could NOT get back to sleep. I watched the music shows & played the tape mark let me take home last night ..love the first song on Side A (one he wrote its words to me) It’s excellent! [I’ve included a YouTube link to it below… but read on first…] Anyway I looked blankly at maths revision sheets before ringing Mark around 4:00. Talked a little while – he’s no better ..poor guy – I don’t like seeing him so sick -head ache & cough. said he’d been popping pills all day, besides sleeping, watching a little TV. Keith was there ..he said he’d come around (to give me my biology sheets) very short stay -he looked terribly tired. Tonight I copied out my bio. sheets (a second one for him, you see – it helps me study at the same time!) It’s 10:40 now. Am tired, but plan to listen to 4CCR for as long as possible. Didn’t eat too much today! Good, huh?! Hope Marky’s better tomorrow – there’s an excellent movie (sunday special) on at the Capri.

Sunday 14/6/87

You should see the bags under my eyes! BLACK. I got about 7½hours sleep last night – not enough. It’s 8:35 now & I plan to get a good sleep tonight. I wasted the day, really. Did a little maths revision after Mark rang me, just before 2:00 (very short, pointless phone call. But he’s feeling 10 times better -only has a sore throat now- and told me [privacy omission] lost his license today – speeding silly! He might be able to use [privacy omission]‘s car (if he’ll let him) cos he gets his license in 2 weeks & [privacy omission]‘s lost his for 3 months! (+$120 fine) Goody- hope he can use it!) Before, I think I just listened to music (tape) & fiddled round with my HW diary.  . Oh! I know! I wrote out my bio. assignment yeah, really good! Mmm singing Alltime Lover all day – my fav. song. (mum loves it too!) [See below. Firstly I can’t believe I actually found it (because it’s not called what I thought it was called) and secondly, I can’t believe I liked it… it has to have been just sentimental attachment because… it’s really bad. The lyrics are up there with the worst I’ve heard. And mum? Oh my beautiful mum was a bit of a musical dag I’m sad to say. She loved Bucks Fizz – that says it all. And if you don’t know Bucks Fizz, don’t worry, you ain’t missin’ anything!] Oh wish it’d stop raining & get cold. Worked out my formal dress & hairstyle totally now. Can’t wait! Must try & do maths tomorrow – get lots done. Think I will stay the whole day. Maths is a bloody problem. Ugh. So’s chemistry. Bio – no sweat. English – yukky poo. UGH! Ate a bit more today. Depressing. MUST lost weight + tone up my disfigured leg! + TAN & blonde my hair

Flat Tops, Failing & Friends on the Phone (17-23 November)

A Life in Words
Drago (Dolph Lundgren) sported a flat top ‘do in Rocky IV (1985)

Monday 17/11/86

Boring day. Mark I saw once (had a haircut – Cameron too; Flat top!! [ah, the old flat-top! Think ‘Ice-Man’ in Top GunLooks cute!!) Wasn’t at parade – just at the beginning of little lunch briefly. Talking to Cameron, Glynn, Chris & David lunch hour – everyone was gone – mima & Fiona & lots left after double chemistry. Monique & I did nothing. Studied chem a bit tonight and can understand most of what I’ve learnt (or read) Hope I can get the rest done tomorrow. Is only 9:00, but bags under my eyes make me go to bed. Talking to Chris & Cameron in maths – Cameron & Mark had a big fight Friday arvy. Chris did with Duane, too I think. said something about mark – Chris said “Have you talked to mark?” I said “what about?” He said “you know that night” I didn’t answer. [Perhaps not just because I may not have known what (which night) he was referring to, but also whether he was just…baiting?] Cameron said something can’t remember, but wasn’t positive. Got me wondering. Cameron’s always going on lately about how good a friend I am.. wonder If he was trying to say something [Haha, this young girl has not yet learnt that males don’t “drop hints”. Don’t read into everything, Liss.]

Tuesday 18/11/86

Fail. Written all over my brain. I could not do anything. It’ll be a miracle if I pass – a doggone miracle. Boring day. Not actually; studied this morning, but went to school around 12:00. Stayed talking to Monique. Then walked up to exam room with Heather, Linda & Justine (Cameron a little of the way) Is hot (had a big thunderstorm – lightning etc…) Raining lots – I got saturated! Caught bus home with Fi. Monique rang in the arvy. Talked about miscellaneous stuff. A Life in WordsIn shower, I got a phone call from a guy. Julia didn’t get name or anything. Cameron forgot to ring back – lucky I rang him. Talked abit about Moni – lots about miscellaneous – didn’t get any news ’bout mark ‘cept that he really likes Fiona a lot as a friend. “Jealousy?” Was Cameron trying to make me jealous? [Highly, highly unlikely!] Asked about what he’d said in maths – said I was hearing things. [The boys often said that. It simply means either “I don’t want to tell you” or more likely “I don’t remember”.] Thank God. (?) It’s 9:15. Gotta go.

Wednesday 19/11/86A Life in Words

Monique rang 4 times. For most of the time we talked about nothing in particular – sometimes not even talking. [This is another of the defining characteristics of our friendship, and it is said that this kind of sitting in silence is the stuff of true friendship: total comfort in each others’ presence. Monique was the first person with whom I’d ever experienced this ease, this depth of peace – besides my mother & sister of course. Mind you, I also hate being on the phone these days so this particular experience is unlikely to be replicated.] I’m ashamed to say I wasted the day. I did very little maths study and no art (practically) –  no english or anything. I ate one hell of a lot I think I’d better stick to the diet again – I’ve gone up to 62kgs again. So it’s been a waste of time. Waste of a day. I can’t believe how restless I get when studying. Wish Mark’d ring. Or even just Cameron. In a way I envy monique yet I think she envies me – that I can get on so well with him, so easily – like I envy Fiona and her friendship with Mark. I wonder if he envies Cameron? Wouldn’t that be nice? [No, it wouldn’t. Too much envy, too much Wanting!] Hottish day. Shoulda done some exercise – reading about it in a magazine – really good for all aspects of your life – fitness mentally, physically, socially… [Well isn’t this interesting? Perhaps a crack in the door opening to my future fitness career? Well thank you, trashy magazine!] Is about 9:20. English tomorrow SHIT!

Thursday 20/11/86

It’s 12:30. I’ve been doing maths. I just finished reading over bio notes and now I have to get started on my art – my fingers are rather ‘slow’ – I can’t write quickly – ah, yes I can… leaning on the table! Got another letter from Delanie; she writes back fast enough. Talking ’bout mark – she reckons we’re both flipped over each other, but are ‘playing games’ esp. Mark. [Haha, that’s so cute: a friend who knows nought but what I tell her (my one-sided story, full of hope & guesses) analyses & concludes in my favour. Ain’t friendship grand?!] I saw him briefly today before english exam (each! – Dunno if I passed – didn’t do too well.) Wasted this arvy, kind of, too. But I got a little worried about maths. After a phonecall to Fi, I was a little reassured and got ‘stuck into it’. There’s not much (well, there is really) that I can’t do – I just have to think – trouble is, you don’t get time in exams!! Hope I’m not too tired to do my maths & bio. Boy will I be glad when tomorrow’s over! Not really; still have my art to do. OH NO!

Friday 21/11/86

Boy, am I tired now! It’s 10:10. I failed maths; there were so many things I couldn’t do. Saw Mark a little. Lunchtime – all of us (YR11 group – who were there) sat in the library ‘studying’ – yacking! (talking) [I don’t recall our librarians being big on telling people to ‘Shhhh”!] He was in my room for bio. It was fairly simple – I’ll pass – probably only give me an HA [High Achievement] overall this sem. cos I couldn’t do a few Q’s. [Ah, there’s a hint of potential dissatisfaction with regard to my grades. I thought that concern had died with the advent of my social life; that all I cared about now was simply passing. No, the Perfectionist is not dead.] After, talking to people Mark & Cameron hangin’ round. Cameron talks to me a lot. Then they went. We (Monique, Sharon, mim, Fi & I) went to mime’s to watch video tape of Last night’s Return to Eden, which I’d watched anyway. Then, dropped home, got ready & went into town. A Life in WordsOn way in we passed bill & mum was sure Cameron was in the front seat. (GREAT!) Bought new album 1987 Let’s Party [one of my favs!] and had tea at Pizza Corner Played record at home; was always looking out the louvres, hoping to see Cameron walk up the street. [As. If.] Hope he is at his dad’s place!! Maybe Mark’ll go over tomorrow. [Always wishin’] Finish a reply letter to Delanie 2morrow

Saturday 22/11/86

A Life in Words
My (now aged) Lorikeet drawing

Did another piece for art – my lorikeet (well, something like that) is possibly my best work!! I spent the whole morning on it. I have 4 left to do. When Nana and (great) auntie Nancy & Uncle Raymond and Ruth came over, I ate. I shouldn’t have but I did. Raymond was looking at some of my work – I showed them all my ‘exhibit’, I think they might buy! [No, they were just ‘encouraging’] made lotsa phone calls about Sean’s party – Monique tried to get Cameron & the guys to go but was unsuccessful. Still went tho’. Monique & I were driven by mum to Sharon’s (monique got ready at my place) & Mrs Weeks took us there. It was … alright. Boring, yes. But not to the point of suicide. About 100 I think, turned up. I shouldn’t have drunk again. I got happy (was keeling now & then) I was eventually fine. [Hmmm, I don’t remember this one. Mind you, I suppose it’s silly to think you’ll remember every party you attend in your life… especially when you’re drinking at them…] But we scabbed a lift home with Justine at 2:00 (most people had gone or were going by then- ) Boring!! About 3:00 I got to sleep.

Sunday 23/11/86

Waste of a day. I started a piece of work. It progressed. But when I finished it tonight, Geoff pointed out something wrong. [This rings bells to me but I just can’t remember what that piece was] I tried to fix it but stuffed it up instead. So I scrunched it up & threw it away. I was a little upset, too. [You don’t say?] Monique left around 10:00 this morning (riding home) Boring day. I ate chocolate cake and chips. I think I’ll have to forget being really strict on my diet→ on the holidays it’s too hard. I’ll still try to balance what I do eat & “substitute” etc. [I’d love to know what I meant by that – “substitute” – back then. I’m quite certain there’d be a difference in meaning now.] Oh, I wish I could’ve gotten more art done. Don’t think I’ll get much finished. And, god, when am I going to get everything ‘framed’? How much will it cost?? OH NO! (Get dad to pay. He really should) [Of course, living with mum meant she forked out more in the act of rearing us. It’s almost unavoidable for the supporting parent, no matter how much the other may contribute via ‘maintenance payments’. This only intensifies my respect for her.] Can’t wait for the next weeks ahead (days) Befriend Mark, Elissa (your ambition for the week)

Dreadlocks, Attention Deficits & A Big Night Out (29 September-5 October)

Monday 29/9/86

Did some art research; was rather fruitless, actually. Started a chem prac too. But that was it. I am very guilty – firstly about still not ringing Ms Marsland to find out whose [retailers in the city centre] windows we are decorating [for Fun In the Sun festival] and secondly, that I have not done ½ or even ¼ the amount of work I need to have completed before the end of the holidays. 3rdly – I ate one hell of a lot today – must lose weight. Mark, I think, was in my dream last night and, I think, the night before. I wonder if all his ‘appearances’ in my dreams lately have any relation to real life – I hope so – that its good. [A superstitious hope! I’ve come to believe that dreams are simply your subconscious’ method of processing & sorting the day’s thoughts, feelings & experiences. Simple. No prophetic value.] I really think (I’m hoping that) I’ll have a chance. He did care for me (a lot more than any other girl) once … I know. I think I know.. certain things point to it. [It’s nice to see my thoughts are not perpetually negative…] I watched TV, mucked around, ate, sang, listened to music and… bored, guilty Is 11:05. Nite!!

A Life in Words
My ‘updated’ school diary for this week… colourful, yes?

Tuesday 30/9/86

Today I did 2 chemistry pracs (well, 1½) and updated my school diary [decorating my diaries was an artistic habit I’d developed]. That’s about it. Aside from that I called Monique about Ms Marsland; she said there was no need to worry – Mrs Marsland didn’t even know what we were doing last week; she said (Michelle W told her) that Mrs Marsland wanted us to ring her in the last week anyway. Great. I watched no TV, but listened to music & tied my hair up in scarves. At first I attached 1 to my (tiny) piggy tail, then 2, then 4 then tonight I got big ones & plaited them – really long ‘dreadlocks’ looked excellent. [Hmm, interesting… considering dreadlocks don’t actually appeal to me…] Also mima & Brent came round in Brent’s mum’s car! (Brent driving) Wo! Funny!! I’m staying at Monique’s tomorrow night. (going to the beach with her tomorrow) & we’re going out. Gonna meet [privacy omission] etc at Croc. Rock. Dunno what time. Rage I will. [Yoda you be?!] 9:55. Mum’s birthday tomorrow & I forgot COMPLETELY. What am I going to do? Poor mum; I’m so terrible to her. [I always felt that mum “lived for” me and my sister, so I guess it’s almost ‘natural’ to feel bad about ‘forgetting’ her – she had never forgotten us. In this way, no one ever made me better aware of my selfishness or self-centredness – without doing or saying anything – than she.]

Wednesday 1/10/86

Woken up by Julia at 6:55, But too late mum had made her bed & had brekky. I made a card, [I only realised how much these little things meant to her when I found a bundle of them amongst her things after she passed away a couple of years ago] then packed for Monique’s and the beach. Felt guilty about being away on mum’s birthday. [There it is again – I can hear my thoughts now: “You’re a bad daughter not giving up some time for her when she does so much for you”] She dropped me to monique’s. A Life in WordsCaught the beach bus (driver revved us about sitting – couldn’t see us) Had a rather good time – got burnt on shoulders & back – arms too. Not badly. Saw lotsa spunks – one group ‘taken’, another group (Martin G) too old & the other: alright! Alex L & 3 other guys. the one in the yellow singlet mmm! Looked at me!! Caught bus back to Gumtree corner – started walking home but Mrs P got us! Got ready about 8:00 onwards (slowly) Fi said they’d sneak out be there 11:00-11:30 Lucy not allowed at all. We went at 10:45. Martin G said they were coming 12:00-12:30. We saw Travers (not many people I knew AT ALL) Packed tho!! went outside & inside lots. saw Mark & Keith. Barely said anything it’s obvious he doesn’t like me. Finally Fi & jay came. Jay got in – Fi tried 4 times. Couldn’t get in. [Continued on the next page of the diary…]

Thursday 2/10/86

… Fi, AnneMarie, Travers, Leanne, Judy went to Nighthawkes. Said they’d be back 2:30(. Monique didn’t want to go cos she told her mum she would be at Croc. Rock.)[Wow, her mum KNEW we were going ‘Out’?] so Jay her & I went in Smithy’s bar and had couple drinks when we came out Mark & Keith were gone. Waited & waited [for Fiona & Mima]. Decided at 3:15 to catch a cab & ring Anne-Marie’s place. Went there, but AnneMarie & them weren’t there. Left at 4:05 – Fi couldn’t go to AnneM.’s anyway = had to be home by 4 that morning. Got 6hrs sleep. at 10:45 Fi rang wanted to know if we’d like to go to the movies with her. (Monique said) we wouldn’t make it. When asked her how night was she wouldn’t answer- kept changing the subject. I assumed she’d got with Mark…I was so depressed. [Haha, talk about jumping to conclusions! Of ALL things, and ALL people!] But in town at 2:00, met her. She said her mum was there & she couldn’t talk about it. What they did was at 2:40, realised were late & got finally back to Croc Rock at 3:30 10MINS after we’d left. SHIT. Stayed there – then got home 4:45 (umah!) Walked to Coxen Chem. on way saw: Mark & Keith. Hoped didn’t see me. Am trying to give up on him. Got $50 [from dad] for mum (dad wasn’t there tho [so who gave it to me?]) & walked up town saw Jules. said mum cried cos I wasn’t there on her birthday & dad too – didn’t even call her. A Life in Words[Ah, so my thoughts weren’t far from the mark: my Guilt was justified] Really upset so out of town money [that is, my ownbought a red rose. Gave to her with $50. Is 9:55. Assignments tomorrow. Glad to be home. Am really depressed inside. Last 2 days were a total waste. [Really?] Had no fun at Croc Rock at all. Oh Mark. [Oh, Gawd]

Friday 3/10/86

Tried to do my work today. Got more of the same english assignment (I’ve been doing for months) down, but that was it. I watched a little TV, but spent most time trying to finish the assignment. Beka rang & I said I’d ring back cos I didn’t know still, whether to go or not due to my work. In fact, I rang Fi to see if they were going out. No. So I rang back Beka & told her I’d go. [Huh?] After cleaning my room, got ready. Went in around 6:10, walked round. Jay gave us a free gelati to share. (I had had no dinner and no money to buy any) saw TOP GUN again (with summer rental) EXCELLENT. Saw Peter H – was hoping (was I?) that Phillip was there – don’t think so. So that’s all. Found out also that [privacy omission here] aren’t going out saturday night either. So a boring end to the holidays. And I still have not completed the work needed to do. Is 12:30. Better get some sleep.

[The following is a tad confusing, but what basically happened (below) is that I forgot to write my entry on Saturday and just ploughed ahead on Sunday night, without realising that I had missed Saturday altogether and was writing in the ‘wrong space’.  Did a quick ‘recap’ for Saturday on Sunday’s page…]

Saturday 4/10/86

School tomorrow. And I have done none of the english I had to do. I am in BIG trouble. BIG BIG trouble. My own foolish, stupid fault. Woke around 8:15. Played monopoly with Beka & Lucy till they both left around 1030-11:30. the the James Hardie 1000 had started and I got interested in that. [Car racing I have NO time for now, and I believe the only reason I got ‘into it’ back then was a product of Sentimentality: reminiscent of the period in my life when Dad was still living with us, before my parents split. He tuned into the race every year, so watching or even just hearing it could trigger a range of thoughts & feelings] A Life in WordsAnd Petra came over. And so I got nothing done. I am watching the movie now. (Wierd – (all that jazz)) should be asleep so I can wake early and finish my assignment. In a way I’m glad to go back to school. The only thing(s) wrong with it are (i) the work and (ii) I have to see Mark every day. I could forget about him (well, more than possible) on holidays cos he’s out of my sight (outa sight, outa mind) Is 10:20. How much longer’s this movie gonna be? Why do I have to go back and see Mark? Why? It’ll wreck my start (start in forgetting him)A Life in Words

Sunday 5/10/86

Hey! I did this yesterday and forgot to do yesterday!

4th Sat: Did nothing all day – ate. Luc came round. She, Beka, me & Jules went to Pancake House for tea (got finished early & walked around town) came home at 10:30. Played Triv. Pursuit → mum & Geoff came home midnight. Got to bed about 1:30

A Water Fight, a Doppelgänger & a Half Leg Wax (7-13 July)

Monday 7/7/86

Purritty embarassing! Ha! Apparently cameron was there when he rang… shame… so I’m sure a few other people know  now too… Cameron, Keith, Mark, Brent & probly Steven. Girls: Sharon (mima told her; she’s totally ignoring me!!!) monique sandra (P) mima, fi, me & tanja S. I didn’t want ‘anyone’ to know… I felt terrible… (kind of) Fi & mime kept telling me to go & talk to him … as if!! Walk up sit down & start talking. I don’t have the guts, sorry. [Have to say, I still wouldn’t do it now either. Yes, I am still THAT shy.] Otherwise, fairly boring day. Think Mark didn’t mind the call. Thinking a lot more about it … he left his dinner, talking to me & the more I think about, I realise he did ask me some questions & talked too. [It’s amazing how well our Minds can ‘warp’ things…] A Life in WordsDad came round this arvy [it was his birthday] – gave him screwdriver set, copper beer mug and socks (& lotsa hugs & kisses) mima & fi went to town after school to get my prezzy!!! 9:35 (miss my digital watch!) can finally do [understand, I assume] my maths!! Hip Hip HOORAY!

Tuesday 8/7/86

Got a bit depressed this afternoon. I feel so dumb – I HATE my shyness. Yet, that is what they all say Mark likes in me. But it also means I won’t be able to talk to him (at school anyway) I am so confused…. Watching the mini-series now “Mistral’s Daughter”. (Besides being a little corny, it is a beautiful story.) 9:50.. gonna crash soon. Did no HW this arvy. [Removing name here for privacy reasons] went home with [and again] (and guess what?  . . .  yes! She said she had to tell someone. She said it was “great”!! !!!) so walking home, she stopped in at my place. We talked. Sometimes about Sharon…a fair bit about Mark. If there was a happy medium between shyness & “bravery” If I could just be able to say ‘Hi’ now & then & talk casually in class etc. it would be perfect. I am tired. And kind of depressed & confused & unsure & insecure. [Heavy]

Wednesday 9/7/86

We skipped athletics trials again this week (and with my luck, they’ll have cracked-down on those who “skip” it so will get into trouble on my birthday…) A Life in WordsWent to town at big lunch… looked for [cassette] tape [of the album] “Little Creatures” by Talking Heads (no one had it) then got Fi’s (formal) shoes off lay-by & got lotsa food. Stopped back at Dunphy’s  newsagent for the rest of the arvy, reading mags again. Polly & her friend Selina were there this time too. Also today realised just how much work I have for art and, all over, how much more I’ll have to try to achieve my goal of at least  3 VHA’s this semester…→ A LOT!! And Mark? Well, I didn’t see much of him. Going to Nana’s for tea tonight [it was her birthday…within the space of 3 days, my dad, my grandmother & I all celebrated our birthdays], on our way to Newmarket Drive In bottle shop, saw a person with blonde hair riding along. Thought Cameron. And it was. And Mark was there too!! YUM YUM! Did no HW. Is 8:50.

Thursday 10/7/86

A Life in Words
At the annual Cairns High & Saint Augustine’s football game. I’m left of centre, lifting my chin…

MY BIRTHDAY…WOWEE. The biggest, sorest pimple on my nose… PAIN! And it’s bright red! Fairly good day. Woke up to phone calls galore & ran late!! From Fi & mima, I got make-up (eye shadows!!) and cards + 1 from Donna. Not much of a fuss at school Thankful, in a way. Pretty boring day except that I missed double art for a bio talk (only to be near mark – otherwise I wouldn’t have gone) Quite fun & I think Mark’s looking at me a bit more again now. (??!!) Upset after school – the CHS & saints footy clash was on & no one had invited me. After a lot of tears [oh dear, not a happy birthday?], I scabbed a lift with the Brewers (felt absolutely terrible) mark wasn’t there. But Cameron (2nd best!) was. Got $100 so far [total birthday cash, that is]. Dad & Geoff & Jenny  yet to go!!! [Expectant little thing, aren’t you?!] (Hoped Mark’d ring or something) eyes are so sore (from crying I guess) stinging – must shut them & get some sleep!! 9:45.

Friday 11/7/86

If there was any doubt, that can (again) be rid of; I have new again, straight from “the man” (Cameron. McK) Fiona said “does mark like Elissa?” In biology dance practise. Of course (loyalty to his friend) he didn’t say but she bugged him & he said (something like) “Mark really likes Elissa. He’d really like to talk to her but is too shy. He’d like to walk up & talk but wouldn’t know how to start a conversation.” FREAKY!! I’m happy! I LOVE MARK!! (I look at him and wonder “that (meaning gorgeous hunk) likes ME?” How can it be? Anyway (I had a good time in chemistry with Cameron, even had a ‘waterfight’ (which Mark witnessed the middle & end of) Went to town with Julia & Justine tonight. Saw so many things I’d like that ended up only buying my shoes – which I adore!!!!!!!! ♥ Mark! 10:45. In town in Chandlers [THE eminent music store in town at that time], saw a guy (not really good looking) had looked so much like Mark ie; his features so closely resembled mark; wonder if its his brother. Unbelievable how similar he looks!

Saturday 12/7/86

I did nothing. (I mean, after I went clothes shopping..) I got a pair of white leggins/ski pants and a heavy cotton jumper/dress… soft pink. Also got white & soft pink socks (cotton, knee-hi) and  mum bought Julia a colourful shirt. But this arvy, I did barely anything. Waste of a day… could’ve waxed my legs or something. . . (eg. HW) But finally got thru’ to mima’s around 6:15… she said they’d come at 6:30 to take me to see the Yr 12’s going to their formal. I wish I could’ve seen Fi . . apparently she looked beautiful [dolled up as an usher for the function – the privilege I had also been offered but declined]. I really felt stupid … why didn’t I go? I know why & in a way I don’t regret saying no. [Well that’s a relief! Acceptance of the outcome of my choice, and a hint of the presence of some degree of self esteem!] Anyway, I’ve already started planning my dress etc!!! 10:10 Hope Mark will be my partner at our formal. Hope so. Yummiest Guy out!! I love Mark W!!!A Life in Words

Sunday 13/7/86

Boring! I did my set HW (and I didn’t even start my english assignment) – well, (what I could do of maths) I didn’t have much. Then I waxed my half leg (shins) I’ve washed  & moisturized  them a lot this time so the hair follicles will hopefully not get infected; feels better!! (Missed a fair bit!!) Also played lots of records [yep, black vinyl – the original recorded music medium!]. But it was rather boring. Love thinking about Mark….. spunk. Also this arvy, experimented with my hair … made it wavy or crinkly & have decided to do it like that for my school photo tomorrow. Looked good! Also have decided how I’m gonna grow my hair …. Length to my lips (all the same; a bob) and get perm solution combed through it; push in some kinks so its slightly wavy or more “bouncy” – “curvy” !!! [Uh-huh and that’ll work. I had fanciful ideas about how things worked!] 10:15 Tired! Got big red dots & pimples all over my face. Will hafta use coverup so they don’t show in my photo.. unless they miraculously heal tonite!!!

[Although I didn’t date it, I’m fairly sure the following spiel I wrote in the ‘Notes’ section at the back of my diary happened sometime in this week – the mood and tone seem to correlate:] Mark is the biggest spunk. Want to make friends with him (at least) Am so upset. How the hell can I do this? Let’s face it; I am far too shy. He has to make the first move. I think he does like me a LOT. I think. (I hope) well, the way it’s going I know I am liking him LOTS more all the time. Just have to look at him and I feel elated knowing he likes me; that beautiful, tall hunk likes me, in all my plainness. It is inconceivable. [It’s inconceivable that I had such an incredibly huge inferiority complex. But, I was what I was!] But I love (??) him or at least have the biggest crush on him ever. . . .

Cross Country, Halley’s Comet & Sales Tax (7-13 April)

Monday 7/4/86

Very boring, actually. I was glad to be back at school, but tried to stay out of YKW’s way cos I hated my hair. Most people did notice. Some really liked it but by far the majority thought it was just “nice”. [Tell tale sign that they actually didn’t care, Liss!] I told everyone I didn’t like it. And that’s the truth. [I still do this, and I really don’t see it as being self-deprecating. I honestly just tell the truth.] Fiona told me today that ugly “tough” black guy with big lips and nose & crucifix earring likes me. Lynette C told her. I always score the YUKKY ones I wish Mark liked me. Oh, how I wish. I also wish my hair’d grow back fast. No poops at school→ got the pains but withheld and, surprise, surprise, the one I did tonight was about 90% normal! [Surprise, surprise! Oh dear] 9:34. Didn’t do any HW naughty. mima & fi weren’t on the bus → they went with Mr G. Also went different ways after school

[And at the back of the diary in ‘Notes’ section, I’d written:] Yeah man! It’s the 7th – I’m back at school in 2nd term. My first week of this month was shithouse. I was sick and depressed (about mainly my flop of a hairstyle. N’ever mind…..)

Tuesday 8/4/8A Life in Words

Cross Country run. Didn’t even get a place. [Seriously? Reading this I was surprised that I’d even written it. Did I really think it was a remote possibility? I wasn’t a runner, I barely exercised on a regular basis. That is strange …and funny.] Heather, Justine, Mima, Fi, Joannah & Megan & I ran sort of together. Actually we walked most of it. I’ve got aches in my legs now – not like from doing the exercise → like growing pains. At the end Mima, Fiona & Joannah, Melissa [uh, Melissa? Who’s that? I think I meant Megan] ran ahead. But we (J,H [Justine, Heather] & me) beat them cos although we walked, we jumped the fence instead of going all the way  round. Did no HW again. Bad, huh? I’ve got to do some Esp. chemistry tomorrow night – exam on Thursday. “mmmm…looks good to me” is my new thing about Mark “mmm” is mark. [Oh really? I’d NEVER have guessed…] Another late night. Yes! 9:45. My watch band broke on the run. Gonna hafta get it fixed proply

Wednesday 9/4/86

Got 43½/50 for my Biology & 8/15 for Chemistry. Worse still, it’s 10:50 and I have barely looked at my chemistry work for my exam tomorrow. I got only 4 more flowers (all the others they were all out of) & a lot of speech homework. And my art isn’t finished. I’m in a real fix. I’ll hafta wake early. My watch is fixed. I forgot to clean my teeth this morning & put deodourant on. Not a good start, huh?! Now my feet; I think I have damaged from the cross country in sandshoes…There’s a big hard lump in the bottom of my left heel. I don’t feel good at all. I got my fringe straight today → blow-dry technique. Geez. I really feel down sometimes 

Thursday 10/4/86

I did fail chemistry, I’m sure. I knew almost nothing. Heather & Brent & I (don’t tell anyone) cheated a little – compared answers. I think I’ll have to start a home study timetable or I’ll fail chemistry and maths. Biology and english are basically simple compared to those. [I am definitely a ‘words’ not ‘numbers’ person (which is why I’m amazed that I ever thought of accountancy as a career prospect) and as it turn out, biology has come to figure prominently in my fitness career] It’s 10:20 Another late night. Watched TV, started my journal for art (when I realised I’d left the script [?] at school so I couldn’t do it anyway) then did (or started) what I hope to be my 6-adjective piece. A Life in WordsDidn’t get to see Halley’s Comet again. Haven’t seen it yet. That’s appalling. It’ll be out of sight soon too. Trust the weather to be bad when it’s visible. [This was the only opportunity I would have to see Halley’s Comet in my lifetime…unless I reach the age of 90 with perfect vision (and, uh, that’s already an impossibility) Since it returns to our solar system every 75-76 years, it’s not expected again until mid 2061. Bummer, dude.] Ate a lot when I got home from school. Always do. It’s a shame. I eat little except when I get home. I could be losing weight. Wish I didn’t pig out at hm. Mark was away today. (So was Angela M) You don’t think…? Nah. Impossible! (??)

Friday 11/4/86

11:20. How time flies. Only an hour ago, it was 9:00, I could’ve sworn! My throat is slowly killing me (well, not quite) I am worried about what I will do after Yr 12. I’m so insecure. [No idea, which I wasn’t to know, is the same for many…] Geoff advised me to get a job and found a career before dabbling in art, cos’ the competition in that arena these days is so high. But I want also to go where most of my friends go (not “James Cook” Uni – yuk – townsville [JCU was a new tertiary education institution then and was founded in Townsville, Cairns’ rival city] I hate thinking about it. I’m terrified. I might be getting a cold I think Hope not. Bludge in double english – Mr Grossetti was away. Did bio assignment & decorated my diary. Wondering if Mark really does like me or if it’s his way of flirting. Hope he does He was away again. And I’ve had a sore throat all day – it’s been a bad day

Saturday 12/4/86

$28.20. (I let dad keep the 20c!!) I did $12.20 worth of drums – big and little. And 4½hrs work (sales tax.) It could have been 7½hrs, but my foolishness cut it back. You see, when I started at 11:30, I went the wrong way doing the tax so I’d just repeated what was already done. This was at 2:45, I realised. Dad said he wasn’t going to pay for my mistake [hard task-master], so I started again – correctly this time and worked till 7pm. My itches also became worse today (ever since Wed, I’ve been getting really itchy all over, but only for a short time in the mornings) A Life in WordsToday I came up in lumps And was totally red from scratching. Now I have blood blisters from it. Yuk [I get itches these days too but it’s definitely not the same as this. ‘Neural Dermatitis’ doesn’t produce lumps, rashes or any other kind of skin affliction.] 11:00 LATE AGAIN. Wonder if Mark is at Anne Maries Birthday party. Wonder… I like him. [You don’t say?]

Sunday 13/4/86

AUNTIE HILARY’S HERE!! She came at 11:30. I did my art today. Wanted to get english, bio & maths done too but didn’t have time. I read over some of my diary (the parts that I was at school) [True procrastination – no time to do all my homework but time enough to read my diary…] Esp. about Mark. Gee, I was so confused then (not saying I’m not now) One day I’d be sure (?) he liked me, the next he wasn’t interested. Its all the same, tho, huh? Always like that. Jodie gave us a present – a cute exercise book & pen. Cold is just nasal now i.e.: no sore throat just blocked & runny nose. Nose is sore. Is 8:56 Early-ish nite for once. School is tops except for the work. (!!!)