Mood Swings, Errant Incisors & The Jody Keen Memorial Trophy (31 August-6 September)

Monday 31/8/87

Well it’s 10:30: I have only ½ my english assignment done (if I don’t hand it in before school tomorrow I get 0/20) and I have ASAT (Australian Scholastic Aptitude test) tomorrow, which I haven’t even looked at the booklet, for. [See this post from a fortnight ago if you want a little more detail about the ASAT] Great, huh? I really felt conscious today about my schoolwork .. I’m going to work harder to get everything right for my exams – maths, chem & biol. next week. [Yeah yeah, heard it all before…] MUST do well. Got my art mark Got 16/20- I was disappointed: a few people got 20’s -about 5. But I made her [my teacher] ‘up’ my mark by one, so I’m a V.H now, at least. [Well …that’s interesting. I don’t remember that, and can’t believe I was that …”assertive”. Some assertiveness in other areas of my life would’ve been helpful…] God, I’m tired & I know I’ll stuff up the ASAT tests. SHIT. I won’t even get my english assignment done. God help me. I barely talked to Mark at all today. He’s really getting me down – he is so bored with me & that really does nothing for my ego. A Life in Words[And I was way too young to realise that Ego IS the problem…] Wrote a letter – not sure if I’ll send it yet. I’ll get Fi to read over it & tell me if it’d make him react wrongly (ie: MAD) [LOL, a ‘wrong reaction’?!] mucked around in biol. though I actually was a bit more bold & felt really relaxed around him. could tell he was still bored with me tho’. Please change back Mark – be romantic again. [Wanting or expecting someone (anyone!) to Change = nothing but Pain]

Tuesday 1/9/87

I arrived later than usual trying to get my english done (I didn’t) went up to do ASAT tests . . were hard, generally, although some parts were easier than others. . at little lunch I left straight away: finished my assignment at home then went to see the orthopaedic surgeon (Dr Bottoms) he talked a lot went in late, of course; came out around 1:35. . […and the result was? I can’t recall, or even guess, whether this appointment was actually for my personal ‘benefit’ or related to the building of my Third Party compensation claim from the bus accident…] got back to school near start of 6th period. Boring in art; did little in chemistry (Cameron distracting me a lot) after school, I went up to talk to Mark, for the first time of the day: “What’s wrong?” I said cheerfully. No answer “OK” I said & sat next to him. He said “Don’t ever say that to me again.” I was just shocked. “What?” “What’s wrong?” I sat really bewildered & depressed & upset – I moved over to Fi & tears sprang up. What the fuck had I done wrong? I was very upset. At home rang Fi – she said ring him – wasn’t home, so rang me back – seemed cheerful enough – said “I just hate people saying that – giving me sympathy when I don’t need or want it.” SHIT. OK. I fucking got the message. A Life in WordsWrote another letter -told him about them & I’ll let him read them tomorrow

Wednesday 2/9/87

Fucked up day. Pissed off cause stupid bitch wouldn’t let me go for my learners cos I only had I.D. no birth certificate. Then I went to courthouse to get it & found out I have to send away to Brisbane (will take ages) then I get home this arvy & mum finds out I’ve got it after all. & tonight I’m really shitty about my teeth The fucking gap is growing bigger, still. soon it’s going to be just the same as it was – fucking mile wide. [For those who haven’t been following my ‘story’, I’d grown up with an impressive sized gap between my teeth – as well as a decent overbite – which I hated (see my post Welcome to My Life for more detail & a picture) but had to wait until I was about fourteen to receive the quite complex & lengthy corrective (orthodontic) treatment I desperately desired. Once I was permitted to ditch the final piece of oral apparatus – my plate – I didn’t realise the stubborn gap would slowly, sneakily open up again. It certainly didn’t return to its original size, and I don’t recall being overly conscious of it, but years later I finally discovered the cause: my ‘frenum’ – the tissue connecting my top lip to my gum – was so thick and large that it forced my teeth to separate again. A Life in Words(My sister had the same problem: thanks for those genes, mum and/or dad!) Needless to say, my dentist at the time performed a ‘frenectomy’ (ASAP!) to remove the offending tissue and my incisors slowly shifted toward each other again. Yay!] ASAT finished thank god. Saw Mark’s photo’s from (before) the formal. He got my letters but hasn’t read them yet. Bet he did tonight & I’ll bet he’s shitty tomorrow or something. [That’s positive thinking!] He’ll probably say “stuff you bitch – I won’t go out with you anymore then.” PISS OFF. I’m in the worst mood. [No?!] He was rather nice today tho’. Made an effort, kind of (Are you sure you didn’t already read those letters??) Wierd. Hot weather – but still cool at nights & in early morning (to about 9:00) Don’t be angry Mark – I love you too much. [Illogical reasoning! The act of loving someone bears little influence on their moods.]

Thursday 3/9/87

Well we had a parade this morning – Mr McKenzie received a certificate for the crash (or something) [I can’t recall this, but I am certain it would have been for his amazing conduct, leadership & compassion during and after the bus accident] and, Mark seemed O.K. today. He gave me the formal photos from his dad’s camera. This arvy I got upset a bit because he resorted to the usual “I don’t like you & I’m never going to talk to you again…” routine I’m sick of it [again; you DO have a  choice…].. and I hate, detest hearing it from him. Jesus. My english exam I found pretty easy- I know I’ll pass, but don’t know how “well” I’ll do. My appointment with Ms Forbes [our school counsellor] was a waste: she was busy so I had to see that guy Mr Inskip & I forgot all my material anyway so it was a waste. […of time. And we know how much I hate ‘Waste’…] A Life in WordsI was rude, I think – it was so tired. Finally finished copying out M’s & C’s letters. [Mark gave me these to read the week before. I must’ve found them so entertaining that I wanted to make copies. Go back to Thursday’s entry in my previous post if you want to know a bit more about them.] It’s 10:37. I’m dead! Wonder if Mark’ll talk to me tomorrow. God that hurts. I’m so sorry I’m a sook.

Friday 4/9/87

A Life in Words
Jody at our leadership camp, just a few hours before the bus crash that took his life.

Well, we talked a bit, but after school we had a big talk. It lasted about 45 mins and, had I not been out picking Julia & Cherie up from the movies, and doing quick grocery shopping with mum, he would’ve rung & we would’ve talked more. He doesn’t know what to do about our relationship: he, oh, I don’t know (either does he) [hmmm, I’m not sure about that…] Boring day. My appointment was another waste of time today – Mr Inskip hopeless. Did QTAC forms this morning period one (the day’s timetable was totally rearranged) [The Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC) is the organisation that manages student course applications for pretty much all tertiary education centres in the state. You can imagine it’d be a pretty complex task…] God I’m tired. We lost the Rugby Union Final. Brothers (Saints) defeated us 14-4 & took the (new) Jody Keen Memorial Trophy. [Jody being one of our fellows killed in the bus crash. I remember feeling a bit disappointed that our CHS union team failed to claim a trophy dedicated to one of its own students, in its premier year.] P.N. spent lunch CH M,M!!! Said Hi this arv. too! [Crush, much?] Need to get to sleep soon: mima & fi & I going to town tomorrow, then Mark’ll ring or visit (he left a message on machine tonite). We’ll do something tomorrow night (He & Keith are moving into David’s (Keith’s brother’s) house for 2 weeks while he’s away) → (has no phone on) we still need to talk a lot.

Saturday 5/9/87

I slept very badly last night (Waking frequently) Woke around 7:00 this morning unable to fall asleep again, I got up. Around 8:45 mima & fi picked me up- we went to Earlville first (PN not work.) then into town.. not really exciting, but a good way to start off the weekend; just wish I had money to buy some clothes. At home, did chem, as well as resting a bit. Mark & Keith came around 3:00, we went for a drive (hockey fields) took Glyn (B.) home & then me. Jo rang tonite, after Mark; they came around 8:30 & we went to the House on the Hill. EMPTY!! Glyn came down; she had to be home by 10:00- Mark drove her. (Played pretty cool music, towards 11:00) When he came back ($ drinks) sat in Smithy’s till 11:45. (Mark was being really nice – that stuff I said about romance & chivalry might’ve got thru’ to him, because he was so sweet .. and I laughed a lot- couldn’t help smiling – even tho’ we didn’t dance (much), it was probly one of the best nights, up there .. music & Mark – the way he was!) Picked Glyn up [continued next page:]

Sunday 6/9/87

→again and back at David’s, we tried (supposedly) to sleep, but mucked around. I could never get bored with the ‘foreplay’ Glyn left around 3:00 – came in, & let us know she was going (!!!) […hmmm…] Slept – so tired. I woke around 6:00. . couldn’t sleep again for a while (wanted M. to wake but he wouldn’t) so eventually I dozed off. around 9:00 we were both wide awake & mucking around again. Keith “chucked a fit” around 10:00 (“Get up – make a move”) A Lfe in WordsAfter one crumpet, they took me home, where I dozed & slept till about 2:00 . . Mark rang, mid afternoon – sweet! I was surprised he rang “for no reason” – just to talk. And that we did (not a long phone call- I don’t like long calls anymore after that arguement he had with his folks that time) so I did chem. before going to dad’s. [Aha… Father’s Day] We sat for ¾hr waiting before going home again (where I tried to do maths) He rang about 8:30- said he only just got home. Too bad – he’s coming ‘fore school 2morrow to get his prezzy. It’s almost 10:00 now, I must get some more sleep!!! I ♥ MARK.

Séances, Black Forest Cakes & A Retainer Brace (6-12 May)

Monday 6/5/85

I was bored today. I think this long weekend has gone so slow. It’s cos’ I bin bored – I’m gonna keep saying to fiona (after every weekend) “what did you do on the weekend?” & when she asks me wot I did, every time I will reply “-oh, u know, the usual boring weekend I always have.” – Today I watched TV, ate, an’ even made up a new exercise plan which I will start 2morrow. The Bests came out in the arvy. We went to the park (there’s a slippery slide there 2, now!) Watched TV, went back (they’d gone by then.) Watching TV now. Have had a bath & tea. Did a poo just a few minutes ago. [Too much information? Thanks to “the Coxen Bowel Fetish”] Feel better. Am determined 2 have an early nite 2nite

Tuesday 7/5/85

Only 2 days of skool this week!! Going to the orthodontist tomorrow to get a plate – my 2 front teeth have started to ‘space’ again. I need the plate to hold them permanently – but I don’t need the late permanently!! Felt like rubbing it into Fiona about my lonely, boring week ends 2day, but couldn’t. Was hot. Sleepy, too. Art is due Fri (assignment) so German Camp kids get to hand it in on Mon. Just as well cos’ I haven’t started!! Got clay today. Made last things tonite after HW. a brandy snap, 2 doughnuts and a cream’n’strawberry tart. Is another early nite 4 me 2 nite. Exercises this morning took alot less time!

Wednesday 8/5/85

A Life in Words
My retainer brace looked similar to this
(that’s not my smile!)

Was busy today. Had to try and remember so much! German Camp health form, art money, swimming gear, art texts etc – god!! Had period 7 instead of period 1 (don’t know why) BP instead of History. Neither one any fun. Did paintings in art. My clay work’s drying slowly. Tim is a hunk! Mum picked us up after swimming (glorious day the stinger net’s gone!!) [For those who don’t know, some deadly marine stingers inhabit the coastal waters of North Queensland for many months of the year (approximately November-May) so swimming at beaches is only possible where the special stinger-net enclosures are based.] Got my ‘plate’ at orthodontist. It’s called a retainer brace – a bit fits in the roof of your mouth and wires (just one) goes round your smile! At speech mima said “Do you want to go out with Steven? He’s your height and quite spunky”. I changed the subject. Why? I just got nervous! (Jemima said (when I asked her) that she didn’t set Neville & me up. At another National Trust meeting. Have to wake early tomorrow to pack, etc. I’m gonna be soooo tired.

Thursday 9/5/85

Got everything done this morning! Even got a ‘white’ costume – I’ll be snow WHITE! Shame job at skool. I wore shorts (but that wasn’t the bad bit) Everyone musta thort we were crazy to go on a German Camp. [I don’t quite understand what’s SO ‘shameful’ about this. Unless it was considered ‘daggy’…but we were getting time off from school, so…?] But ….got Dorm. 2 again (5 of us + natalie & tania P.) Did activities like wotch slides (boring) & made paper beads (boring) While we did that, fiona’s group did skit & made Black ForestCake. Food was alright. Swam – was cold but very refreshing. Had disco 2 nite cos’ something wrong with Film. Was silly – no one danced. Have a feeling 2nite will be late.

Friday 10/5/85

Late nite got to sleep ’round 12:30. Others told ghost stories, so I blocked my ears & dozed. [Yes I was a scaredy-cat. And I still detest horror films. I don’t see the point of stressing myself with negative images & thoughts.] Fi & Beka on their way 2 loos ran into a snake. Wots worse, when we all called “snake” & “Mr Pudniks” [one of the teachers] no one came!! Were woken early for a walk. Long walk. Practised our concert items after brekky. We (Shane, Natalie, Tanya ‘n’ Justine ‘n’ me) had to perform Bremen Musicians on cards (I drew ’em of course.) After our skits, had free time. Swam – Had lunch then concert (u guessed it – ) on film! We won best act – got choccy! A Life in WordsMade & ate our Black Forest Cake after another swim. Lucy, Fi & me talked about what we didn’t like about each other. After Bath’n’ tea, watched Film. Not so gut [german for ‘good’] as last year. Rushed ending. Probably ‘nother late nite 2 nite. The others want to hold a sayonce. [You guessed it – I meant séance] Wish some spunks came. Tim or someone!! !!

Saturday 11/5/85

Last nite had big joke session after unsuccessful sayonces. Then another sayonce (unsuccessful) then sleep. Too tired to look at watches. Coulda been after 12 // No walk this morning, didn’t swim 2day. This camp was good! Wade ‘courting’ Jenny (we think (cos’ we thort we overheard him torking to Ian) [not keen on this ‘cutesy’ phonetic spelling I seem to like falling into every so often. I DID know how to spell ‘talking’…] he thinks “she’s the only one who’d do anything” and “the rest are moles”.) After brekky, packed and rest of morning (Besides session of scrabble & pancake making (and eating) and lunch) was free time. Boys came to our dorm, cos’ Jenny left early. We must be 2nd best! Had a whip fight with sapling branches. Free time – till parents came. Shane is nice – still a fond friend I think! At home, (Julia bought me 3 popsicles to win a prize in this competition. We’re close to winning PANAM HOLIDAY to Disney & Hawaii, or a stereo getto blaster or computer. Then I unpacked, bathed and slept 3hrs! TIRED!! Bests are here 4 tea. I’m off 2 have some baked alaska! [I remember this! Mum’s one & only attempt at Baked Alaska. She did well, but I think the amount of work that went into it was enough to put her off trying to make it ever again.] Lateish nite I s’pose.

Sunday 12/5/85

Today had to do English Book Review talk & art assignment. Wasn’t in the mood, but struggled and got English talk done in between reading magazines, eating and lazing ’round. Had shower and we went to Dad’s new house Is nice! Pretty big too. Got ½ art assignment written – rough copy. Today was MUMS DAY gave mum only a home-made button bracelet but dad bought round a plant 4 us to give 2 her. Lateish nite

Recycled Carpet & a Metal-Free Mouth (29 April-5 May)

Monday 29/4/85

Anna is going with Prabon. It happened at the Bluelight & Megan is too embarrassed to sit with Anna while she’s with him. Anna’s feeling guilty. Had science test not too bad. Also got maths test back 20/25 Best in maths so far this year! Got form for german camp – it’s next week. I know I want to go, & Justine is but I don’t know ’bout anyone else. Jodie T. had a bottle of perfume which she shot Fi & me with at B. lunch – smelt 4 rest of the day. At home, read Dolly (May, new one) until carpet ‘witch’ aunty Hilary sent up, came & mum began laying out 4 the lounge & dining room. [Because mum didn’t earn a great deal, much of our Simon Street house was built with secondhand materials…which these days would be considered VERY cool by the Greenies. Mum had procured all the french doors, the whole kitchen, and some of the external building materials…as well as, evidently, recycling my aunt’s old carpet. I’m so proud of my resourceful mother.] Didn’t do any HW. Man came 2 fix washing machine. Is 8:50. Mum’s starting to carpet her room, now. She won’t stop!!!! [That was SO my mum. She was a real worker, never stopped. If she did, it was lights out!]

Tuesday 30/4/85

Windy & cool. Is definitely coming into winter cos’ its starting to get dark at 6:30. Mr Van Slooten wasn’t here today, thank god. Got on bus (this morning) 2nd last & there were NO SEATS LEFT. Everyone was barred or taken. Julia eventually let me sit on the one she had barred 4 Philip & Brendan (so that they wouldn’t take Anna’s again) [Ah, Hierarchies in Everything. Bus seats?] Have only just realised that my English letters, due tomorrow, I have not even thought about. It is 8:35. Can I get 2 done? Stay tuned folks…..

Wednesday 1/5/85

A Life in WordsGood day today. Happy!! (most of the time) Wore white sandshoes – yes, they were white! We cleaned them last night in power clean & they’re white! [‘Power Clean’ was – and still is – one of the best products my father sold. I’m not sure what its active ingredients are, but it DOES do a great job on most things! It’s probably one of his best known and oldest in his product range.] Got science test mark – 15½/25 OH! OH! In german, doing work on adjectives an example was Elissa hat ……… schwester. [In English: “Elissa has  ______ sister”] and everyone had to add adjectives – told Jules some ‘o’ the words were nice, some bad. Are doing fantasy drawings in art – have to listen to music from “War of the Worlds” to help ideas. Wish we could do our own dreams, tho. Beach was good – overcast and cold, but warmed up. Went 4 that walk – everyone had to. (Puffed) only got ½ way. Speech was good, mima talked to me! about Bluelight, Brent, kissing Brent…….. At Geoff’s for National Trust Meeting – tired!!

Thursday 2/5/85 

A Life in Words

TODAY WAS THE DAY!! I GOT MY BRACES OFF [In my original diary, this text was handwritten over three lines. Excited much?] Looks so different (my teeth are too nice for my face!!) [Hmm, there’s a glaring hint about my degree of self-love] Feels funny, like I have wax over them – they’re so smooth! Penwarden, Jenny, Petra, & Marney & Noela didn’t notice at first!!! (Dunno how they could’ve missed it) Beka found out at school in maths today I wrote it on my maths book & she saw – she knew but didn’t tell. Big Yr9 fight today. Anna cried co’s anne & agnes hate her 4 spending so much time with Praybon so she told him she wouldn’t hang ’round. How sad. Paid money for German Camp. Robbo’s (- Peta had work) came for tea left 8:45. I did get my english letters done. Bed at 10:00.

Friday 3/5/85

Today – I liked this day very much. Woke early – teeth feel like I’ve still got braces, but are covered in wax. Hardly anyone noticed my teeth, without my help in making them notice!! Fiona knew (straight away, almost) that I was lying when I wrote that I had Larangitis. [There was never any ‘pulling of wool’ over her eyes.] Double religion was boring (but Tim’s in Anglican too) think he was watching me, sometimes. English did spelling & handed in. Finished painting plate. Must do 5 articles in clay over weekend. Cross Country Run I came 23rd in age group & 2nd in age group for Trinity. [Well this is a surprise to me… I didn’t think I could run.] Went with Deyanne. Lucy was 2 far behind 4 her & Fi & Beka were too far ahead of me. Got home quite early slept! (about 1hr) Yacht Club 4 drinks then take-away pizza at our house. Watching movie – weird. Lateish nite.

Saturday 4/5/85 A Life in Words

Woke 7:00. Lazed till 7:30. After Brekky watched TV till ’bout 10:30 when started HW. After “Air waves” [a locally produced TV music video programme], finished maths & all HW, then got clay down from “attic”. Was hard – dismayed me. Won’t get my clay work done, now. Made some more bracelets – another bead one, and a safety pin one. Countdown taped most songs. Julia left for Catherine W’s party 5:30. Watched TV. Am watching movie, now “Tim”. I reckon the ‘movie season’ has started. Good movie last nite, 2nite & “Voyage of the Damned” 2morrow nite! Yesterday I thought mima would come ’round 2 c my teeth cos’ when she waved on her bus I pointed 2 my teeth & she got really excited. But she didn’t come. Shouldn’t have gotten my hopes up.

Sunday 5/5/85

Woke 6:00. Read ‘1984’ till about I don’t know when! But went to Raintrees Sunday Markets & (shame’n’shit!) guess who was there? The one & only Master R, himself. Tried to dodge him much as possible, but at the National Trust stand, I was under the impression he was trying to be seen. He’s grown one hell of a lot taller – brought up some old emotions oh! & of course Julia embarrassed me in front of him. SHAME!! Rest of the day, finished ‘1984’. Around 4:30, bathed (& shaved) ‘Nother late nite – at Dianne & Kerry’s. Watched countdown. Saw footloose on video.

The Persistent Suitor & a Hangover Memory (25 February-3 March)

Monday 25/2/85

BACK TO SCHOOL for another week. Yuk. Fiona has a cold. She’s bin sniffin’ all day. Lucy has left too. For good – I think. & Justine’s in her own world with Sarah H. Am tired. Nothing really happened today. End-of-unit science test on Wednesday; new PES teacher is Mrs Connors (she’s ooookaaaaay); German another bludge. double History (bigger bludge in the library); art was alright; BP yuk as always. Got the March Dolly & Wham! Magazine today. GREAT x-ept I’m a little disillusioned with the WHAM! thing. Not that excellent. Late-ish nite.

Tuesday 26/2/85

Today was supa-hot, too. More rain this arvy & thunder. Fiona’s cold is bad. I don’t (& she doesn’t) think she should’ve come to school. She had a temperature in the afternoon. Tim wasn’t here today. I didn’t see him, anyway. Mima yelled to me this arvy “Neville wants to know if you like him.” I smiled a sorrowful smile & shook my head; No. I wish he’d give up. I’ve already told (lied to) him that I’ve got a boyfriend in Brisbane. Hardly any HW tonite. Learnt a little for my science test. Nothing on except cricket (BORING!) Am so hot & bothered. Dunno if I’ll get to sleep. Bluelight is on 16th March (or so they say…)

Wednesday 27/2/85

I didn’t like today. (except that science test was easy & got a hell of a lot of work done in BP.) Fiona went home at little lunch, leaving me with Rebekah. Also lost my ruler and after speech, Fi brought up Neville again. She said he wrote, “I love Elissa” all through mima’s HW Diary. I wish he’d lay off. I don’t think I’ll go to the next Bluelight, cos’ (no doubt) he’ll be there hoping to dance & dance & dance….. And I know I’ll blow my stack. Mum went to a National trust meeting, Julia to a disco & me to Mandy & Bills. HOT again today. Got braces tightened. Dr Kadell said this was the last stage in my teeth fixing!! They come off on May 2nd!!

Thursday 28/2/85

Fi was away today. Boring. Hot. Told Beka about Neville (about the “Neville wants to know if you like him” & the “I love Elissa”.) She tried to hid her dissapointment. I told her I wasn’t going to go to the Bluelight, but later in PES (when she’d recovered) she told me I must come & be mean to him. I don’t know why she wants to do that. Rang Fi tonite. Told her about it she says she doesn’t want to go either – she’ll tell me ’bout it tomorrow. [Unfortunately if she did tell me about it, I didn’t enter it into my diary. So we’ll never know why.] Jodie (Julia’s friend) embarrassed me today… Tim (spunky) has bandages on his nose. He walked past & she said aloud “look at his nose”. (he’s broken it, doris!) He turned around How embarrassing!! [SO easily embarrassed?] Mandy came and looked at the tiles. Practised handstands I’m gettin’ betta! Can’t wait till Fi gets back!

Friday 1/3/85

16candlesPOSTERToday was Hot. Again. Yes, again. Fi was here today. School was boring. God Tim’s a spunk. He’s got bandages on his nose. Wonder why?…. (BROKEN, dick!!) Got off at Fi’s stop, cos’ mim told (signalled) me to. We had arvy tea then read books. Then we all went home. Then we got ready to go to the movies. Then the Brewers picked us up & Mim, Fi & I went. Julia was there too, with Petra. Beka SHIT was there too, with Justine. “16 Candles” was a top movie. “Hard to Hold” (before it) was THE pits.

Saturday 2/3/85

Today was plain. (I thought) Woke around 7:30 & lazed & dozed until 8:30. Didn’t start getting ready to go to work till around 10. Dad came an hour late. up till then. I just tried to do my english essay but couldn’t & walked around tidying up stray things. [Textbook Procrastination – a defining trait.] At work, I didn’t feel at all like doing washing drums cause at his new place, there’s no drains (You can’t do it outside in case the grass dies from chemicals) [It amazes me now that no one put two & two together back then: so it’s ok to drain the residual chemicals into our waterways, but not kill the grass outside the premises? How did it take – and unfortunately still is taking – so long for Humans to realise that we’re in a ‘closed circuit environment’?] So I cleaned 4 drums & did 2½hrs labelling – ($11) altogether. Lunch was filling. At home, mucked around watched TV. Had bath. Watched TV. No tea Just snacks. Late-ish nite. Not so hot, now. Fi rang today. She Didn’t ring back.

Sunday 3/3/85

Gutsy today. Ate so much. Woke around 7:30, wanted not to go to Pt Douglas with mum & Geoff, or to Dad’s, but to Fi’s. Rang her, but she rang back 5 mins later, crying, saying I wasn’t allowed. So went to Dad’s. Jenny had a bad hangover. She spent most of the day in bed! Jules & I got words for songs then I spent most of day doing nothing or watching TV, while trying to write my english essay, But I did get it started (finally) and am now almost finished. Is late & movie is stupid. Am full. Jenny left after walk on the beach, then Penwardens came for drinkies! Australia lost to India. Are definitely out of the finals now. [This day was forever etched in my stepmother’s memory. Or should I say branded, with a scorching hot poker? Julia & I played, stopped, rewound & played the song “One Night in Bangkok” by Murray Head on one of our mixed tapes on Dad’s stereo, over & over until we’d transcribed the lyrics, unbeknownst to us permanently instilling in Jenny a hatred for the song. She was sick as a dog and just wanted it to stop – but didn’t say anything at the time. It’s a running joke now.]  

In case you can’t recall the tune, here’s a link to a YouTube music video: One Night in Bangkok

It’s a Mean World (5-11 November)

Monday 5/11/84

Extremely hot, tiring, boring day. AM SOOOO TIRED. All talking about J’s party. Was TOPS!! Lucy’s having one now, but the boy’s’ll sleep over. Did no HW. Rained this arvy. Presentation Night – the 13th. Did I tell you, I got a merit award?? Whoop-ee-do! who cares?? [There’s that perfectionism rearing its ugly head again: knocking an achievement for which I didn’t even work hard to earn.]

Tuesday 6/11/84

Another boring day. Was upset all day about Mark cos’ Fiona told Jemima & all mim said was “isn’t that nice!” She didn’t bother to say anything about me like “tell Liss not to worry”, etc. Anyway, Fiona said she thinks something will happen for me at Lucy’s party so I’d better hope. Early night.

Wednesday 7/11/84

Another BORING DAY in the MEAN WORLD. A stupid day of school & school work. Came home, had bath, went to speech. Mima & Elisia set up something about a phone call that Mark made to mima (just to stir me up) I Bet. Jemima doesn’t like me. Had a terrific storm afterwards – rain, sqwalling winds, thunder & lightning (the Lot). After trudged with mum to check on the house. Looks OK. Early-ish night.

Thursday 8/11/84

No storm – hot & still day. Fiona told me that what happened yesterday was a joke but they weren’t going to do it  because they knew it would hurt me. Elisia did it tho! Orthodontist said I’ll need these on for another 6 months at the most. After, went with mim, Fi & Jay to Freshy tennis courts. Mim met Glenn (he rode out to see her) she was with him most of the arvy. I didn’t mind. Polly, Fi & I still had fun.

Friday 9/11/84

Kept forgetting it was friday. Such a slow week that I didn’t know it was coming to an end. Staying at mim’s cause Geoff & Mum are going out to dinner & Nana’s not home.

Saturday 10/11/84

Ever since my braces were tightened on Thursday , they’ve been giving me hell. Woke early but got up about 9:30. Mim & Pol had to go to music (lessons) so Mrs Brewer dropped us home. Tried on all mum’s clothes till went back to mim’s at 12:30, called Fi & spent all arvy  on the trail bike. Glen came but wouldn’t get on the bike. At home 5:00 played french cricket with Petra & Julia. Read “home” magazines & went for a walk after tea. A Life in Words

Sunday 11/11/84

Petra left early. Had pancakes for brekky, lazed around. At 12:30 Dad & Jenny came – went to little Di’s for lunch. Kim N. & Paul P. were in the park. Late night. REMEMBRANCE DAY.

Marshmallow Fail, Static Electricity & Conan (2-8 July)

Monday 2/7/84

At 5:15am today it was 8.5°C. Lowest temperature recorded since ’65 (7.3°C) COOOLD!! Tho’ Hobarts max. today is expected 8°C! Our max 4 tomorrow is 23°C! Townsville 4.5°C, Irvinbank -10°C Herberton -2.5°C. Cairns coldest ever was in 1932: 6.8°C. But today, at work did Women’s Weekly Puzzeler & some book work for dad. Staying 2nite again

Tuesday 3/7/84

At home, Mima came up & we made Marshmallow – what a mess! It boiled over & under the hotplates. We had to cleaned it up (euch!) Bonza tea of meat pie. Est. temperature minimum is 10°C tonight – not as bad as last night but not as good either – course it is! I love WINTER & JULY! When Polly came over I had to try’n’sleep in an ice cold bed! BRRR!

Wednesday 4/7/84

Polly, Julia, mima & I went to town with mum & in Suzie Cue like in all shops, the carpet gave us electric shocks. I rubbed my feet & touched Julia. We nearly fell over! There was a LOUD POP & we were SHOCKED Badly! After I got my braces tightened went to Earlville & Kmart (saw Mark!♥) Then had powder & towel fights before feeding the cats. I flung the meat accidently into some bushes when the others told me to swing it round & flick the blood on each other & it broke!! On Tuesday Julia told mima I like Mark. Knew I couldn’t trust her.

Thursday 5/7/84 A Life in Words

At mima’s worked with clay until they went out at 10:30. I had a key so, at home, watched TV till Brewers picked me up again about 2:30. Watched “Conan the Barbarian” on their video – alright, mum picked me up, I fed the cats & had a late night at home.

Friday 6/7/84

At 8:40 mima rang & asked me into town. There was a big mix-up. I couldn’t make the 9:00 bus as she had asked. She got on thinking I was down near Griffith St – it was Clare McK. So I rang Mrs B. & she picked me up on her way in. I met mima & we walked around. At 12, saw Fi & Sandy Lee (they were waiting for greyhound bus – SL was leaving. She is nice after-all. I misjudged as usual. We missed the bus cos mim a wanted to buy some books, but the Dunphys dropped us home. Watched TV Dad came. Staying at Dad’s 2nite.

Saturday 7/7/84

Lazed about at home. Mima rang in the arvy & I went up to help her & practise speech work. Ex’s were very hard. Mum picked me up, fed the cats, and had a late night at home.

Sunday 8/7/84 A Life in Words

Read Dolly & helped Julia with her Spain project all day. Watched TV etc. Fed the cats & went to bed quite early. I’d summarize the holidays as good, fattening (did exercises only for 1 week) am fat now. Finally, me teeth are together! See, on Wednesday when I had them tightened, they became so close I almost fainted. The next morning they were shut. Looks great – UNREEEEEEAL!!!

21-27 May 1984

Monday 21/5/84

Late morning. I have a horse cough, now (y’know a deep, hoarse wintry cough) Was cold & windy today. Love it!!! Haven’t got Fi’s present yet – UMAH! Mucked around at lunchtime. Quite boring really. Came home and cried. Don’t know why – just got angry & cried. [brilliant example of inexplicable teen angst, due to raging hormones?] Dad rang and tried to calm me down. He has his own flat now. Jodie S.’s birthday

Tuesday 22/5/84

I GOT MY PINAFORE!! It’s grey but still great! Gave Fi a postcard & I will every day of the week (until Saturday – the surprise party.) Heaps of HW today (Angela’s birthday, too, today) AM worried I won’t get it done. GUESS WHAT?!! Shane is going to the Blue Light with Jenny H. He doesn’t know she smokes. Poor boy – another broken heart!!!! [ah, the naivety of youth…hilarious]

Wednesday 23/5/84

Fiona didn’t get on the bus today. She & Jemima wagged it, together – they told me. That’s quite upsetting. I told Mrs Dunphy about the surprise party & she’s agreed to let Fi go. One problem – Jemima knows. Stuart blurted it out. I’ve got no choice but to lie to her. Hope she doesn’t find out. At the movies this morning were gonna see Footloose as well as Raiders of the Lost Ark, but the shitty teachers made them turn the projectors off. Couldn’t go to tennis – no buses left. Got into Toni’s group for Round Robin. FUN! On the way home from speech someone at the school whistled & whistled & whistled. I think at me! Sounded like it!

A Life in Words
the only photo (to my knowledge) of me with braces

Thursday 24/5/84

Got my BRACES!! They’re not big chunky ones at all (like Lucy’s) They’re good! Stayed home. Watched TV & did History. Went to Toni’s (when she got home form school). Drew up the man for “Pin the dick on the Spunk” game at the party. Went home. Late-ish night.

Friday 25/5/84

Ran late because my teeth were aching & I couldn’t eat quick enough! Wasn’t worried – no one teased me. Parade this morning. Have some new assignments. Talked about party at lunch, while Fi was at Library & Angela at a debating meeting. Ate 3 bowls of ice-cream this arvy, but did a lot of riding after!! Mima came around, asking about the surprise party. I told the truth except that “Karen, Rebecca P. & Natasha” organised it. She was very upset. Riding to tennis tomorrow. (I’m actually allowed to ride!) Fi & mima were planning to go to the Bluelight. I feel I’ve hurt Jemima badly  by telling her she couldn’t come. It seems she hates me for it.

Saturday 26/5/84

Rode to tennis. Jemima didn’t talk to me once at all. Fiona filled in mima’s team; I filled in Beka’s. Had a great day, despite Jemima’s sourness. Beek & I talked about it. She rode me home. (the other two went to the Esplanade). I dressed and went to Dad’s. Found out Peta & Marney both smoke! At home, paced nervously until time to go. Got calls from Lucy. Got Fiona but was trapped. Jemima came back down the hill. They explained about how they found out the truth & said sorry. I cried. Took Fi’s gear up then collected Fi.

A Life in Words Sunday 27/5/84

Was great! We ate & played with water bombs, got beds ready, sat & ate dinner, watched “Porky’s” (was UNREEAL!) Played pin the cock on the man, then Boarding Schools. Watched “Clas of 1984”, then talked & talked & talked. Slept on & off – I got around ½hrs sleep! Angela & Natasha didn’t sleep at all. Some had a swim in the morning – COLD!! Had pancakes the size of piklets for brekky. Mucked around. Came home at 2pm. Slept ½hr. Want to sleep again. I’ll have an early nite!




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A Dental History Worth Recounting

Let it be known, I fear no dentist.

The amount of work I’ve had carried out in my mouth is impressive. But when you’re almost a teenager desperate for some kind of sign that you aren’t completely repellant to the opposite sex, your desire to smile with confidence is strong. Strong enough that you’d be willing to wear a mouthful of metal for ‘many months’ of your life.

A Life in Words
From this smile (1983)….

Part of my pearly-white problem was thumb-sucking. It was something I didn’t grow out of in my early youth, like other kids. In fact, I was still doing it (at night, in the privacy of my own home) up to the age of twelve, when the damage had already been done… I’d inflicted bucked teeth upon myself. Well done! Couple that abnormality with the hereditary gap between my front upper incisors (which my father used to lovingly joke about being sizey enough to spit peas through) and I developed an aversion to open-mouthed smiling.

What child WANTS braces? This one did, desperately. And surprisingly it took awhile for me to convince first my mother and then our family dentist to commence corrective treatment. And it wasn’t to be a simple case of wiring up for 6 months or so…no! I never do things by halves.

The dentist was ‘waiting’ for what seemed to be a stubborn baby eye tooth to do the normal thing – fall out, making way for the adult tooth. Since time was getting on and the ‘norm’ wasn’t happening, the dentist’s suspicion grew so I was sent for an X-ray. It was revealed that my ‘adult’ eye tooth was growing horizontally through the roots of – perpendicular to – the  two neighbouring front incisors’. Left unattended – or undiscovered – all three adult teeth would apparently have rotted over time, all needed extraction, then I’d’ve ended up with a gap much more worthy of complaint (and aesthetic repugnancy).

So I had to undergo surgery to ‘expose’ the wayward tooth. Since neither of my parents could afford private dental work, we attended the Dental Clinic at the Cairns Base Hospital where mum’s ‘single parent’ status earned us free treatment. It was local anaesthetic so after copping three needles (two little and one Mother-of-God!) I was aware of digging, drilling and tugging sensations but opted to keep my eyes squeezed tightly shut. The culprit eye tooth was successfully exposed and ‘re-planted’ and the front and second incisors were ‘saved’ (cue pre-recorded audience applause) but I had a hole in the roof of my mouth that was ‘packed’ (with..? something) and bled like a bitch all over my pillow on the first night when my sneaky little thumb tried to creep back into my mouth. I am fairly certain that episode killed the habit once and for all.

There followed at ‘waiting period’ – for everything to settle and heal post-surgery before they could move to the next phase: the external-brace-with-elastic-strap-around-the-back-of-the-head. (This is the stage I’m at during the first part of my 1984 diary).

Instructed to wear it for fourteen hours a day, I quickly worked out that if I put the contraption on as soon as I got home from school and removed before I went to school the next day, I’d accrue “Free Time”. So that was a game I played for the however many months I was required to endure it, and surprisingly it impressed my (future) stepmother: for the self-discipline & organisational skills I displayed.

Finally I got the braces. By this time the glue, the grips, the wire, the tightenings were certainly no big deal to me. They were only applied to my upper teeth, so the poor neglected residents of my lower jaw have jostled for space from day dot. I’m assuming the dental clinic didn’t want to have to use any more resources or do anymore work than was absolutely necessary and since my lower lip fortunately disguises the lower pearlies when I smile, I guess it wasn’t considered as important.

From memory they lasted about 6 months then in quick succession I was given the plate. To the observer, it appeared to be a dainty single wire neatly ‘fencing’ my bite, but the bulk of it ‘nestled’ into the roof of my mouth considerably testing my speech abilities. The hard mould created a ‘false roof’ which also proved entertaining (and sometimes disgusting) when I consumed particular foods.

A Life in Words
…to this (2009)

That could have been the end of it. All those years of sacrifice resulted in a greater desire to part my lips and a relatively proportional increase in self confidence. But… some time after the plate was ditched and my relationship with Cairns Base Hospital’s Dental Clinic was truly over, a small gap crept back in between those two front teeth. Stubborn little bugger!

It wasn’t until the early-mid ’90’s when Mum, Julia and I were all living in Brisbane, that our brilliant new dentist in Toowong pointed out that the hereditary (and tenacious) gaps both Julia and I had (despite all my dental torture) was the result of a little piece of  connective tissue called the frenum, being particularly ‘hardy’ in our cases. The frenum is the stringy connection (dead centre) attaching your lips to the gums of both the upper and lower jaws.

So, I went under the knife again. Both Julia and I had labial frenectomies, but only at the gums, from between our teeth – we still have the ‘stringy attachment’ bits keeping our top lips connected to the insides of our mouths.

My gap has finally packed its bags. The over-bite has long gone. And I have no qualms about smiling now.


March 1984

Thursday 1 March

Late night last night. Slow day today. Maybe going late night shopping. On the bus, it was boring as ever. This week has gone so slow!! Went late nite for ½ hour. The black belt I saw is gone, but there are two others I like (both black) $10 or $20 or in City Girl a double wrap belt $20.

Friday 2 March

Good day. Got 17/20 for English essay (Insurance claim) Handed in my letter one. At tennis, mim, fi & me couldn’t beat Toni & them to the courts so we all played together. Was fun. When the others went, they left a bottle so we went & refunded it. [Better recycling initiatives in the ‘politically incorrect’ 80’s? Take me back there please] The shop was closed but the snack bar was open. The lady said we could refund if we bought something. Bought 2 10c bubblegums. We got free fats frogs (but fi got a ‘Wiz’) They were damaged so she gave them to us. When I came home dad was here and I told them about riding to tennis lessons in the morning. They both wouldn’t let me. We brawled about it & still aren’t on good terms. I’m minding my business and mum’s minding her.

Saturday 3 March

Made up with mum after she rang Mrs B. and arranged to pick up everyone. Had fun! Was in their group (lied that I had taken lessons years ago) Anyhow, did okay. After had a swim at mim’s. Beka was snotty about something. Had a picnic lunch at my place when Beka left. Then made 2 cakes. After, dressed up and walked around the streets with ‘Thriller’ blaring from the tape recorder which fi carried; mim skated & I carried a basket. Teased hair’n’everything!! Looked TERRIFIC!! They’re sleeping here. thriller-by-michael-jackson

Sunday 4 March

Recorded a make-believe radio station & did HW. The we dressed the same as yesterday and walked to the shop in the rain by the longest route. Ran into Martin & Shane. They teased but we know they’d be too gutless to do anything similar. After lunch did HW, had a water fight & played games. Early night.

Monday 5 March

Boring school day. Have decided what to wear to our disco but I can’t work out colour coordination. Early night.

Tuesday 6 March

On the news & in the papers, Brian D. (Fi’s Dad) fell off his boat at 10:00pm, while the crew slept. He was fixing nets on the ‘prowler’ when a giant wave knocked him over. In the water for 6½hrs, he was lucky no sharks were nearby.

Wednesday 7 March

Mossman Sports Day. At school am doing tennis but today, we had to go temporarily into other groups. I played Fi in ‘Touch Footy’. The last two periods were ‘fun’ versions of maths’n’history. //Fi’s dad is alright & on his way back to Cairns. Toni was away today. Think she wagged it.

Thursday 8 March

Toni is away today too. BOG!! Went late nite. Found a great pair of grey jeans but they were stretch jeans – I don’t want to show off my fat legs. On our way home, went to the Food Barn. I bought their special – 4 chocolate bars for $1!! [Hilarious. Complaining about fat legs in one sentence followed by 4 chocolate bars in the next..insanity!]

Friday 9 March

Toni came today. My english model is unreal!! Used crushed velvet for the floor and walls. Floor, chocolate brown; Walls, beige. Ate my last chocolate bar for big lunch. Went to Julia’s disco. Shane said he wasn’t ‘gonna go’, but he did (because I was, I think) At disco (mim came) Brendan said Shane loves me & that I should “try him tonight”. I don’t know whether to believe him or not!!

Saturday 10 March

Got into group 3 (out of 4) with mim, fi & beka but was put down when they went up again. [tennis fixtures] I’m not going back again, EVER. PM: made more things for my english model and started my “Cairns Colours My World” Banner. 4CA are holding this competition to celebrate the Opening of the International Airport. Celebration week is from 17.3.4 to the 26.3.84 Pay $5 & you get paint & canvas supplied. 17 & over win $250. 16 & under win $250. 250 paintings will be chosen & hung in the streets of Cairns. Anyway after, went to mim’s, made up another radio station & slept at Fi’s.

Sunday 11 March

Got to sleep at 2:00 last night. Mim & I had a laughing fit & made up some, mistake, millions of silly riddles (some good) Eg: [Q] What do you call a mashed up Chinaman? [A] Custard! Ha, ha!! Slept until 10am then played hospitals, made patty cakes (with sickly sweet mock cream) PM: Helped fi make her disco outfit then swam at mim’s. At home, started painting banner. I was meant to take my brace off at 4AM but slept in & therefore gained 6½HRS. [Because I knew there’d be times I’d want to go out in public when I should technically be wearing the brace, I became extremely disciplined in recording (& ‘accruing’) time so that I could afford to have those special occasions ‘off’.]

Monday 12 March

I have a feeling this is gonna be one P*A*C*K*E*D week!! I haven’t done my english model or the essay yet! UM-AAAH! Boring School Day. Went clothes shopping today (for disco) Bought an ESPRIT shirt (white & aqua green) earrings (Sportsgirl; red’n’white) black dog collar, white mesh’n’buttons, lilac stockings & blue socks. I couldn’t get any shoe colour – OH NO!!

Tuesday 13 March

Am excited about the disco. About the shoe colour, both mum & Nana tried to get it today but ….alas, NO. What shall I do???

Wednesday 14 March

Up early. I haven’t finished my english yet – HEAVENS!! Kept my bag (of disco clothes) in my locker all day. Coloured my shoes with black & white shoe polish. Worked quite well. Disco was unreal!! After rushing out of speech to Fi’s, hurredly dressed & left. Shane didn’t go. I almost won best dressed but Rebecca P. beat me. (Bitch) Naah!

Thursday 15 March

Pretty hectic day! Got to bed 11:30 last night. Woke at 5 this morning, but did get my english done. Mum wrote a (lie) note, so that I can hand the model in on Monday. At lunch did German research. Is due tomorrow. Also, banner is due Sunday now because not enough entrants, lucky, huh? On bus Martin & Patrick kept saying Shane had a crush on me. I don’t believe them.

Friday 16 March

In history, Mr Van Slooten & Mr Addison have decided to join their classes together & have an Asian day. Good, eh? That means I’ll be with Shane most of the day! I think Shane likes me. He keeps pulling my hair gently on the bus!! Melinda is sleeping tonight

Saturday 17 March

Today went with mum to see some of her clients, then browsed in town. Found this beautiful dress – a skirt with straps (like braces) attached (a pinafore) It’s really neat & suits me well. Gotta save $25. Spent the rest of the day on my banner. Am now finished. Looks unreal!! Julia is staying at Dad’s tonight

Sunday 18 March

Went to Mulleys this arvy! Came home at 9:30. Also, finished my english model at 6:00. Looks fantastic with little telephones’n’everything. UNREEAL! Julia came home & told us that Roger & Leonie are splitting up. Today ate so much cake! UMAH!!

Monday 19 March

Got driven to school because of my model. Toni came with me. Lotsa people saw it & liked it. I’m proud of myself!! Tried to finish German tonight. Mum’ll just have to wake me up early to get it done. Lucy went home today; felt sick. Everyone was in a weird mood today!!!!

Tuesday 20 March

Funny (weird) day today. I don’t think I love Shane anymore, i.e. I’m not sure; I do but I don’t. Early to bus stop. Had science test – quite easy! Also watched Thorn Birds Ch3 in the mini-series was unreal. BP test on Thurs. Began netball in P.E.S.

‘The Thorn Birds’ was the first (Australian) mini-series I can recall being allowed to watch

Wednesday 21 March

Bad girl today, wore wrong shoes, ring & necklace; forgot hat. Want to get my haircut (short bob with flicked fringe – to suit my round face) tomorrow night Good time on bus. Asked Ms Chant about test prepare sheet; still don’t get it. “Flashback” costs $13.50, OH NO!! Had 50c to spend today.

Thursday 22 March

Mr Mahony’s (dd Yr 7 teacher) birthday today!! BP test was EASY!! When I went late-night shopping, beautiful pinafore was gone; only red or blue left. PITY. At lunchtime we made a long grass rope (from grass roots) about 15m long! Angela came on bus this arvy. Tony WHOOPS!! Toni said we’ll go to the First bus stop on the corner of Down St & Kamerunga Rd in the morning

Friday 23 March

Today got really tired at lunch. Got my english assignment back – 19/20 VHA or A. My model will be displayed in the library!! Took a book out for Nin called “In the Wet” by Neville Shute. Began 1st chapter. Sounds good! (I’ve found some really good books in our school library!) After school Jules & me had a water fight. She is staying at Dad’s. No one noticed my haircut (because it wasn’t that short after all). Toni, Angela, Rebecca & me went to the first bus stop. No big deal! Mum & I watched the (funny) movie.

Saturday 24 March

Very boring day today. Went to town in the morning. Got “Flashback” & new felt pens. Drew all day. Rang Fi but she wasn’t there. She & mima rode to tennis & were at Elisia’s, doing some project. Mum & I are going to see “Never Say Never Again” & “Yellowbeard” at the Drive-In. never_say_never_again

Sunday 25 March

Remember when my last band broke? (Well, it was Wed, 22/2) Well today the other one broke off. Stupid, stuffed things! Only 10 days till it comes off! Mima slept at Fi’s Today I was upset about them being together all the time; leaving me out. But we went to the International Airport & looked about. A man told us we weren’t supposed to be there so we left, as the police were “on their way”.

Monday 26 March

English Demonstration today. Did it on how to & how not to eat SPAGHETTI & SOUP!! Went off well – I forgot a few things but got 16/20!! Also today, took out yesterday’s hurt on Fiona, saying she “didn’t go to the Bluelight [disco] because Jemima wasn’t allowed.” She said, “that’s not a nice thing to say.” I said “but it’s true.” We didn’t speak again for the rest of the day.

Tuesday 27 March

Watched the last of ‘Thorn Birds’, tonight. Was sad – only watched ½. Fi & I sorted everything out today. The last two weekends were “groggy weekends”. They “didn’t want me being bored” with them. Toni & I almost missed the bus. Were at the drain/Gina’s house when Toni saw the bus coming. We ran like Hell! I have also officially declared I no more love Shane.

Wednesday 28 March

I think I do still love Shane a very little bit, but I also see Kristian L. (just a VERY weeny bit) Shane is still ranked no.1 on a friendship (male) list. Got up late (7:10) Toni told me about ‘Thorn Birds’. Ralph & Dane died, Meg, her mum & Jussy made up & lived together. Sport day today. Played tennis. Had Rebekah as my partner. Was in a BAD mood. (Speech was good) During dinner, there were 5 blowies (blow flies) zooming around, which got me mad, and then, when we got back from the shop, Julia shut my foot in the door!!

Thursday 29 March

Raining & overcast. Lucy, Karen & I want to go in the Conga line – we don’t know what to do! (Will it still be on? ie will the rain halt it?) BORING SCHOOL DAY. Went into town this arvy – saw some banners – approximately 20 have been put up, minus ours. My pinafore is being ordered in again by Rockmans. Hopefully there is a white size 8. Julia bought a new outfit tonight – apricot & white striped T-shirt, peach skirt & matching mesh overskirt. Altogether $13. Not bad, eh?! I might borrow something….now & again!!

Friday 30 March

Had 60c, bought 2 nutellas. 30c change. Karen “wasn’t allowed” to go in the Conga line; Lucy & I did. Went to the Food Festival, after, for tea. Met mima. Was so crowded! Ate & drank all night! (Well, not all night!) Watched TV. The USA Rock Awards were on – Michael Jackson won heaps! 8/13 I think!! He looked ready to cry!

Saturday 31 March

Mima, Fi & Mrs B. stopped in on me & asked me if I’d still like to go to fixtures cause I’m in Fi’s team. I said yes – my excuse was that I’d been sick over the last 2 weeks. After, (mim & fi went to Elisia’s for project work) at home, went straight into town to see our posters/banners, then Geoff took us to the new airport (it was now officially open) looked around, had tea (at home), then, back at the airport, watched the first Jumbo Jet land & take-off. It was GIGANTIC!

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February 1984

Wednesday 1 February

Normal school day (boring!) – fun on the bus. I think Martin P. & Patrick L. still like Fiona (from gr 7 – remember Lucy’s party, Martin?) Day 2 today!! Is Hot!!

Thursday 2 February

Cooler today because of a breeze. Toni thinks Shane likes Justine – Hope not ! ! ! Fiona’s & my plan is kinda working. Late night 9:30.

Friday 3 February

Good day. Went to Lucy’s after school. Mim, fi,Beka & her were all there. Played a ‘matron’ game. Are all sleeping at mim’s

Saturday 4 February

Supposed to go to town today with Fi, Beka, Lucy, Toni & Karen at 9:00. Toni didn’t want to come, Karen and Fi weren’t allowed and Beka didn’t show up at the bus stop so Luc & I went by ourselves at 10:00. Lazy arvy!

Sunday 5 February

Lucy, mim and fi couldn’t come to Green Island with me, Jules, Nin & Ruth. It was Rainy & overcast. Hoped it wasn’t raining over there – it wasn’t, but was horribly black in clouds. Bird pooped on me twice!! On the way there, I threw up my cherry jam, which I had on toast for breakfast!! [I vividly recall this trip, in rough conditions on one of Hayles’ older Green Island ferries. My sister threw up into her beach towel and after vomitting myself, was amused to find a whole piece of said fruit in the tissue after clearing my nasal passages.] Walked around & had a swim was COLD!! Lost my earring back. Not allowed to watch ‘Grease’ on TV – poop!! (Melinda S. came with us to Green, today)

Monday 6 February

Mum let us watch ‘Grease’ after all. We begged and were a bit naughty, but we watched it!! My left ear is … INFECTED. I wore no earrings to school & fi blew me up – she told me they would close up. Saw Kevin Shorey this afternoon. We had to buy a whole new earring to replace the lost back, but when I cleaned my ear tonight, with the hydrogen peroxide, I dropped the new back down the sink plug. God, I’m an Idiot, a Fool!!

Tuesday 7 February

Today mum saw Kevin Shorey. He gave her a stainless steel back!! THANK GOD!! Pretty good day!! Swimming carnival next Tuesday!! Went to our houses to sort out entrants in the races. Mandy came over for a talk today & brought Heath. He’s big & beautiful!

Wednesday 8 February

Orthodontist appointment 8:30!! Came back to school during period 1 only have to wear my brace till April; UNREEALL!! 1st Speech day today, for the year. Lucy, mim & elisia are in my group. Watched Hoges tonight. Was hilarious!!!

Thursday 9 February

Although Sixteen Candles hadn’t yet been released, I’d already had the pleasure of wearing this kind of orthodontic brace.

In the paper this morning, a year 8 boy from our school had 60 birthday punches from mates – his arm was severely bruised “Shane E.” I don’t know him! They say it happened on the Stratford bus & Paul P. threw one of the punches. Um-aaaah!! With my brace, the reason I only have to wear it until April is that he only wanted to pull my jaw back so my teeth were in their proper grooves, not pull all my teeth back into place!

[I had an amazing amount of dental work carried out on my little head over a number of years, and at this stage I am wearing one of those external braces …yes, you can imagine exactly what I’m talking about; the ones that have the external ‘handle’bar & elastic around the back of the skull – the largest, most conspicuous orthodontic contraption in existence! Thankfully I only had to wear it for 14hrs per day, so I was rarely seen with it in public.]

Friday 10 February

Ruth left today. Pity!! She is very nice. Gave us $5  each last night – gave us lots of things!! GOODBYE!! Had fun on bus coming home. Mim, Fi, Beka, me & Jules played tennis at the Freshy courts. Martin, Patrick & Shane were playing cricket & whistling all the time. I wonder who Shane was whistling at. I think it may have been me!! HOPE!! I tried hard to ignore but I couldn’t help noticing Shane whistled the most!! When he left he did one last loud one. Was it for me? Only hope.

Saturday 11 February

Stayed at Fi’s last night. Went to Sportsworld & watched Fi, Beka, mima & Polly in tennis lessons. Came back to mim’s for a swim. Beka & Fi left – I stayed for lunch. Fi came back after. We had another swim then watched the ‘Thriller’ Jackson special which had been taped from an old ‘Airwaves’ show. Melinda is sleeping tonight.

Sunday 12 February

I am still wondering about those whistles on Friday afternoon. I mean, were they for real? Who were they for? Who blew most of them? It is making me too excited. Today just read, lazed & did Homework until went to Fi’s & did some cooking with Fi, mim & pol.

Monday 13 February

That whistling job had me going all weekend – everyone knew there was something on my mind!! I’m just DYING to know! Shane didn’t act unusual today. Perhaps it was my imagination. My new togs:

A Life in Words
diary sketch of the new togs (read: swimming costume)

Tuesday 14 February


Was no rain, just overcast. TRINITY WON!! Elliss 2nd, Clifton 3rd, Kewarra LAST!! Shane came 2nd & 4th in his races!! Looked at each other on the bus!! Geoff gave mum flowers & choccy

Wednesday 15 February

DAY 5 TODAY. I hate this day!! Today on the bus, Shane gave me an accusing look, when he opened the sliding window, as if I shut it, but I didn’t. I said,” I didn’t shut it”. He just went “Hmph” and I said “Poofter” aloud – I think he may have heard me. Hope not. Feel Energetic!!

Thursday 16 February

A LIfe in Words
Some samples of the ‘fashionistas’ that earnt me some pocket money.
How’s the Boy George look-alike?!

I am very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very upset over Shane. I think he did hear me yesterday. He has been giving me the cold shoulder & I’m not used to it from him. I’ve also lost a good piece of essay for English. Really good & I can’t remember it so I’ll have to start from scratch, but the 2nd copy won’t be as good as the first. Have started a drawing business. [Ah! Here’s the li’l entrepreneur again] Draw girls wearing different fashions – sold for 5c. I also take orders for 10c. This arvy I told Karen how I felt about Shane when we got off the bus and started crying. She didn’t like seeing me cry but promised to talk to him & tell him I do love him & am upset over him. She’s a very good friend.

Friday 17 February

Boring school day. Did homework at mima’s with fi & her. Had heaps of fun!! Don’t think I got much done. Had an early-ish night.

Saturday 18 February

Fiona slept at Jemima’s last night. They went to tennis but it was raining so Jemima got her new racer and rode back to Freshwater with Fi. I took Mr. B.’s racer & we rode out to Beka’s. Decided to ride to ake Placid for a swim, but was too rough. Ended up at Freshy Creek.

Sunday 19 February

In the morning, mima & Fi came round & asked me if I’d like to ride to town. Packed lunch (took $5) and went. They had their racers, while I struggled on my stupid old pushbike. Dropped in to see if Elisia wanted to come, but wasn’t allowed. Had fun. On the way home, it poured. Were all sopping wet!!

A Life in Words
My ‘Bomby’ Bike

Monday 20 February

Julia’s ears have closed up!! Ha, ha!! Na, she’s a sport! Mim & fi came around after school & we went for a ride up Simon and into ‘new’ Cassowary St. We found a dead snake on the road. We all dared each other to ride over it. We were about to move it with sticks when a bloke threw it away into the bush.

Tuesday 21 February

Today was good. At lunch, we were lifting each other’s skirts up and I got Karen twice, she got me 3 times. On the bus she tried to pull mine up in front of Shane but she couldn’t because I got off at a different stop & ran home (I got off at the corner of Griffith & Old Smithfield Rd. Toni was in on it too).

Wednesday 22 February

Had my photo taken for my I.D. card; a card which entitles me to discounts at various shops & places. Lotsa HW. 1st English essay due tomorrow, 1st two numbers on German assignment to be done by tomorrow and History assignment due next Wed. Forgot to bring some bubblegum, today!! Speech was okay. Today, also, my band broke. I was chewing gum and the slot came off * It was on the brace when I took it off.* [*there were hand-drawn illustrations at these points in the original diary but unless you’d actually been a ‘victim’ of this kind of brace, the sketches wouldn’t mean much] Mum said we’ll go in tomorrow. Hope it’s not booked out!

Thursday 23 February

Nana & I went late-night shopping tonight in town. Mum & Jules went to K-Mart. I bought a clear plastic rain-jacket from Sportsgirl & Nana bought me a blue-y-green dress form Katies. Last year (when I didn’t know Mandy P. was Adrian’s sister) I called Mandy a tart. In Mathers tonight she walked past and said “let her call me a tart, I don’t care”. Adrian (embarrassed) said “shut up”. It looks like Mole-inda (Melinda S.) blabbed it out to Mandy, cause no one else would.

Friday 24 February

Good day at school, but forgot bubble gum again!! Went to play tennis with Toni, Justine, Natasha, Karen & Lucy. Had fun. I think I can play tennis – my arm is quite strong! Justine’s tyre punctured so mum took her home and we’re minding her bike tonight.

Saturday 25 February

Have all my savings worked out. I have a list of about 20 that I’d like, a total of $487!! OH GOSH!! But I’ma gonna do it! Enter every competition etc! AM: wrote out english essay. PM: went with Fi & mim to mim’s for a swim. Helped get them ready for Jason P’s Party. Julia slept at Dad’s tonight.

Sunday 26 February

Did some homework. Wasn’t allowed to ride into town this Sunday (it ended up mim, beka & fi didn’t go either – it was raining!) Mum tried to mow block [of land that was to be the location of our next home] in the rain. Got ½ done. I did 10 new girls to sell. Had big rumball & salad roll for lunch. Went to mulleys with Dad & Jules. Had tea there too. Watched TV & rollerskated!

Monday 27 February

On Saturday, wore mima’s ugly purple earrings home – Nana had a fit. When I tried to put my stud in my left ear it stung so I pushed hard and a bit of skin poked out. I was supposed to go to Kevin Shorey’s to have it checked but ‘didn’t have time’. Saw Mr F. [our family dentist] today when we dropped Petra home from school. He noticed the difference in my teeth!

Tuesday 28 February

Julia came home from school because she felt sick. Had a laughing fit on the bus when Patrick hit his head really hard on the portrack & when the dog barked & started chasing Toni & Rebecca P. bolted and I hung onto them. Very tired today HOT!! Early night -mum had coffee with Geoff.

Wednesday 29 February

Good day; did some pictures to sell and Mr Van Slooten helped me sort out my History assignment. Still can’t find ‘Flashback’ History Textbook. Late for Speech. Mim, angela, Fi, elisia & me were about the only ones who wore our uniforms to the inter-school swimming carnival (shame!!!!!!)