2.7 Over-protective friend or you fool he likes you!

I walked out of Barons Court station with a disgusto cold having left work early when I looked up and saw Matt. “MATT! MATT!!” I shouted. Matt was a good friend from uni that I hadn’t spotted since Melbourne was now standing right in front of me top side of the world 7,893,289,213 miles away from the land of Kangaroos.

After a few, “What the hell are you doing here? Which visa? Work… Uh huhs and I have a cold I’m not usually this puffy faced and ugly” we switched numbers and said, yeah, of course we’d hang out.

I was longing to go to Fabric (a famous club in London that plays Drum & Bass), having wanted to since I was 19, and no-one, absolutely no-one, would go with me. Matt, being from Perth and understanding D&B, was totally keen – but he warned drinks at Farbic were expensive so we needed to pre-load.

Saturday approached, Smirnoff was on sale and we got stuck into a bottle at my house before we tubed it up to Farringdon station and in we went. It was smaller and dingier than I expected, but nonetheless it was Fabric and we were in  (albeit 12 years past my wanted-to-go-date but I was super excited about it without any air of cool).

We got drinks and danced to Andy C, while with me wearing a tiny black dress teamed with some throwaway shoes (never, ever wear shoes you want to see again to Fabric) I was attracting attention from the male variety. Matt started to get a bit of a shitty/annoyed/grumpy/not dancing/just glaring type vibe going on. Until 14 more vodkas, toilet trips and dudes trying to chat to me later he lost his shit at me and said he was leaving. After a few minutes trying to shout over music and appease him I let him go with, “That’s fine, you leave but can I have my cloak room ticket please?” He replied with, “I can’t remember which tickets was yours.” And he turned around and lost himself in the crowd. RIGHTO. Cheers mate. Huge club in London, on my own, drunk, it’s 2 degrees outside, and now I have no coat. So I got another drink and kept on dancing – The music was incredible and I’d figure out what to do later. Alcohol – it really does make all your worries go away. And no I wasn’t paying 5 million pounds for a cab home – this is London, we wait till the tube starts again to get home around here.

And then, about 2.5 hours later at 4AM, Matt appeared in front of me again – in a creepy horror movie standing there glaring way. He seemed quite simmered down and said (again) he wanted to go. I smiled and said cool – let’s go get in the 400+ coming-down-off-pills-people line and wait for our jackets. He handed me ‘my’ ticket without a second glace. Hmm I’m putting two and two together now – the vodka’s starting to wear off.

We got to the Tube station and I expected him to get his line home until he came out with, “Oh but I left my house keys at your house…”  Me: “Erm, why?” Blank stares all round. Left his keys at my house – Oh how convenient. I was not happy about this. Sure enough we get home he finds his keys and he tries it on.

Oh, I hear you all – you think I’m playing this boy like a vodka-violin and he’s just so lost and confused right now. And I’ve been him giving the wrong signals all night? Believe me when I say I wasn’t. If I was smiling like a puppy dog about his keys being left at my house or paying attention to him all night rather than every tall man at Fabric then sure that’s green-lights-go for any guy. But when you’re friends and they’ve got some warped idea because you’re in Lundun it’s hookup time it makes me really mad. (This a wasn’t first-time occurrence with an Aussie-fella-friend since being top side of the hemispheres.) Do I strike off every guy friend that gives me a flirty look or touches my arm a bit too much when we’re drunk? It sucks when you have a good guy friend that’s suffering the fresh-off-the-boat, thinking-with-his-pants syndrome that never reared its kangaroo head in the land of Aus.

If a guy is good enough friends with you and got some guts of his own, he might want to broach the subject prior to all the misunderstood above. Wouldn’t it be better for everyone? Guess that’s really laying your heart of cards out of the table and not too many of them are up for all that.

I spotted Matt a year later walking down Clapham high street while I was dressed as a playboy bunny en-route to The Church – not actual church, but that revolting bar Aussies go to to drink beer, flash and throw up on each other. I only did one of those. He waved and shouted hello I shouted back, “Hiiiii” and gave a bunny ear flick back and hopped away.


1.8 Date a girl who can sew.

Date a girl who can sew. Date a girl who can sew because she knows it takes patience, structure and care to make something beautiful – whether it be clothes, cakes, or a relationship. She knows it takes hard work and dedication to make something of a high quality, for it to be long-lasting and to stand the test of time. She knows that for friendships, relationships and fixing broken hearts and hems a Made In China approach won’t do.

Date a girl who can sew because she’s good with her hands, her gentle hands – she can thread a needle through a hole you can’t see, she can move fabric through pieces of metal you don’t understand and she can make an outfit out of fabric you were pretty sure were curtains five seconds ago.

Date a girl who can sew because she’ll have creativity and passion for something other than her job, her nails and her hair. She won’t rant at you for hours when she gets home from work about her infuriating boss because she knows that to switch off, all she has to do is sew.

Date a girl who can sew because when she’s sewing she’s quiet, she won’t bother you. You can watch sport, drink beer and stare at your laptop. She won’t hover and bother and ask questions, because a girl who can sew is more interested in sewing.

This girl will have an understanding of machinery and oil and odd man things like that. She won’t bang it with a hammer or high-heel and expect it to work.

Date a girl who can sew because she won’t waste her money – or your money for that matter – on overpriced clothes. She knows how much clothing and fabric is worth. She won’t spend $400 on a cotton shift dress because it’s fashionable, she’ll buy cotton for $4 and make one herself. She’ll spend money on silk though – ohh yes. Still a fraction of what the high street would be ripping you off by though, so let her go nuts.

You’ll be amazed at the things she can fix with a needle and thread or an industrial sewing machine: backpacks, sleeping bags, any sort of pocket with a hole, golf bags, gym bags, leather handbags… Hell, if you can stick a needle through it, she can fix it.

She’ll know how to read instructions, and have a methodical approach to getting something done. She understands instructions and knows how to follow them to end up with well-made, finished product.

Date a girl who can sew because she’ll wear pretty dresses she’s made herself that no other girl will ever be wearing. You can proudly say “She made that herself!” when you’ve had nine drinks and are having a proud boyfriend moment.

She’ll have the gift of listening and sewing at the same time. This is different to watching television and listening – when you sew you really can put 99% of your attention to listening, as everything else you’re doing with your hands and eyes, and you don’t need to think about it: peddle up, peddle down, pins out, foot up. Plus she’s not rotting her mind watching useless crap on television like the Biggest Loser or the Voice because instead she’s doing something useful and creative.

Date a girl who can sew because knows how to get blood out of clothes. From that many pin pricks. So go to town Dexter.

Date a girl who can sew because you’ll never hear her complaining about clothes in the shops not fitting her – she can already make anything she wants in the colour, fabric and exact size and fit for herself. Which means she’ll always be wearing clothes that fit amazingly and look tailored to fit.

She won’t go fascinator or hat-shit crazy at Spring Racing Carnival and spend a small fortune on feathers and fluff. She can make her headwear from leftover fabric and the base pieces that cost 50c from Lincraft. You need a pocket square to match her? Not a problem.

And when you get married don’t worry about the dress; don’t worry about paying $4000 for it either. She’ll make it herself, or enlist the help of her sewing teacher or know the exact person she wants to make it. Bridesmaid dresses? Easy. She can whip them up cheaper than the Bali versions and she wont be using dance time satin because she already knows how god-awful it looks in the photos.

Date a girl who can sew because your children will always have the best school dress-up day outfits, birthday dresses, dance costumes, Halloween, Christmas, drama, musical costumes or whatever it is your child wants. And never mind growing out of it – tear up the fabric and recycle for next years, Kermit becomes Shrek and so on.

Date a girl who can sew because she can teach your children and your grandchildren the joy of sewing, the art of creating something, and she might just be teaching the next Alex Perry. She can put the spark of creativity in their minds and show them how to use their hands for more than iPads and PlayStations. She’ll teach them to make something that they’ll love, be proud of and remember the time spent building and creating for years to come.

Date a girl who can sew because she’ll be patient, smart and sew, sew awesome.

Inspired by: Lena Desmond (Date a Boy Who Travels)



0.6 I know your face from somewhere… Is it Facebook?

“She’s high maintenance” he said. I chocked back a laugh. He was talking about me. “That guy is dissing you behind your back constantly” said the Canadian. I was on a group tour – Shut up. It was Eastern Europe, not taking my pretty face there on it’s own. There was a guy on tour who’d taken to bagging me out loudly to the others. He looked painfully familiar but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. He was a bit glarey – which I mistook for starey – well you know, like I said, pretty face.

It all started to click into TopDeck Tetris place when I thought – hmm he’s being not so nice and I’ve barely spoken to him, so obviously; we’ve met before and he’s jilted for some reason. Or he’s doing the equivalent of pulling on my pig-tails when he likes me, guys are weird. A quick sweep through my Facebook friends and BAM! Found him. That’s right, that 2for1-Pina-may-aswell-be-clam-chowder cocktail bar in Fulham.

So I did what any Polish-vodka-inebriated-traveling Aussie would do. I pulled up his Facebook page on my phone, showed him and said “Thiz yeww?”. Him: “Yeah, that’s me” Sneaky little thing, he was masquerading under a different surname, lucky I’m good with faces. So cat’s out of the bag now and we have a bit of a stare off – well as best I can do with my Polski-drunk eye. Backstory: We met at a pub through some friends, he FB friend-ed me, he was a bit too FB chatty so I removed him. Fast forward eight months – he’s on my ten day Eastern Europe tour and bitching about me. Oh freaking, awesome.

Facebook: we’ve all removed someone and then run into them (haven’t we?) Thing is they’ll never say “Hey, how’s things going? Why did you remove me on Facebook?” *penetrative stare*. If I was four sails to the wind I most likely, actually, totally, would. With a laugh and an awkward stare, then laugh, then stare some more. Then re-friend request them while waiting in line for the bathroom followed by horror flashbacks at 11AM the next morning with no recollection of doing so. Because it’s fun to make people feel uncomfortable when they’ve publicly, yet silently said “I don’t want you seeing my Eggs Benedict at Café Poshsticks this morning”.

The problem with social media faux pas is we have no idea what’s a social etiquette nuh-uh. It’s all very new. We don’t have parental stories of “She un-subscribed from my timeline and that’s how I met your Mother”. There’s no three-day friend request rule. He can request on the first date and you kind of have to accept because he’s paying for your drinks. And well if he doesn’t (but you a drink) there’s nothing more satisfying than block or remove.

Clearly people don’t know how to react when they’ve been removed on the Facebooks and faced with the Polski-vodka-reality of having to see that person every day for the next ten of them, he called me high-maintenance!? Odd insult I thought. He went with any amount of personality slaying he could, knowing how competitive it is for ‘cool’ & ‘likability’ along with ‘shagability’ on these tours.

Anyway, back to me again and being high-maintenance – I’ve heard this once or twice before and I beg to differ. I’ll share dorm rooms, I’ll drink goon, I’ll have a luke warm shower and not complain… much. As long as I can get makeup on with my compact mirror and My iPod is charged I’m pretty damn happy. Just because I’ve got a Samsonite suitcase and wear red jeans doesn’t mean I’m high maintenance when it comes to travel. Cough.

So you want to hear how it ends? No we didn’t rekindle our FB friendship and by the end of the tour, no-one wanted to sit near the whiny, little, bitch. Him, not me. After ten days of Eastern European binge drinking: there’s hairs on chests, vodka-cemented friendships and high-maintenance girls that cannot wait, to get a mineral oxygen scrub facial.