Thursday, November 26, 2009

Interview Me: 5 Questions

I am so excited! The wonderful poet Chris at has decided to interview me with 5 questions and I love me some questions :)
I have this secret; I love filling out forms, questionnaires, surveys and the like. Weird I know. Anyway. Onto the questions!

1. You are extremely well-read and knowledgeable for someone your age, why is that?
Why thank-you madam :) I guess it would go all the way back to my childhood. I came from Romania with my mum at a very young age, and so I grew up speaking Romanian as my first language, not English. Once at school, I desperately wanted to learn every word possible in this 'English' and so I set about doing just that. I figured books were my way in to the world and once I realised this, the reading corner became my sanctuary. When I didn't understand, I would read. When I was confused, I would read. Perhaps because of that, I have this insatiable appetite for words, books, thoughts, ideas and knowledge that I can't explain (or maybe just did). Just like that, I was hooked and I can't imagine being any other way!

2. You love to op shop. If you became richer than you ever needed to, would you still frequent op-shops as much as you do and why would that be so?

Hell yeah! I would frequent them more than I do at the moment, knowing that no piece of beautiful clothing would be left behind due to lack of monetary funds. I started op-shopping purely out of necessity through my uni days, but it quickly evolved into something I loved. Even now, perusing through shopping centre clothes racks leaves me cold, as each item is duplicated to infinity. But not so with op-shops. Every imaginable piece of clothing/accessory can be found there, from delicate ladies gloves to real fur coats in top condition. Come to think of it, if I had more money, I could gorge myself on real vintage stores, the ones that stock authentic 20's, 30's, 40's and 50's clothes that I could never afford. Our stuff these days just can't compare to the glamour of the bygone days.

3. Which person has had the greatest impact on your personal style, and how was the impact effected?
It would be too hard to pinpoint one particular person, but there are a few blogs that really fanned the flame of my curiosity in the fashion world. One of the first ever blogs I stumbled across was She's a 30-something mum who is fearless with her clothing choices. Also, a Melbourne girl, made me realise that what I wear can be an extension of my personality.
But above all, the best blog for inspiration is Scott Schumann's The Sartorialist. Images from around the world that are just incredible and always make me push the envelope.

4. If you didn't teach, what would be your chosen profession and why?
Interesting question. If you'd asked me a year ago, I could have rattled off a myriad list of professions. But coming to the end of my first year of teaching, I simply cannot fathom doing anything else. I really love it so much. Although....that could be a lie. Eventually, I would love to be a lecturer/tutor at a higher education facility, maybe university and I have this crazy dream of lecturing/tutoring at Bible college. The history of the Gospels, the validity of their eyewitness accounts just fascinates me and I would love to do that eventually.

5. Who is your all time favourite designer and what do you find inspiring about his/ her work?
At the risk of sounding like a bleating sheep following the fashion crowd, I would have to say Chanel & Dior. The timelessness of their pieces and the way their designs are slaves to the female form and not the other way round is just lovely.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

2 hearts are beating together.....

Finally, a photo to accompany the post! Hello images-made-up-of-coloured-pixels!

I haven't included any photos for a while as my beloved iPhone got stolen, which made do as my camera for a while there. As such, I absolutely cannot wait for Christmas as my #1 request is a digital camera! Yay! I can be a real blogger then, all proper-like and what-not.

Until then, please accept my meagre offerings in terms of photos dear blogger friends.

This rare and precious photo is courtesy of a friend who invited me along to her friend's 25th. It was a very interesting party, seeing as all the 'peeps' work with my friend at Channel Ten and provided for some curious conversations.

Not to mention the costumes! It was a themed party, and the theme was "Any #1 hit from any year going back to 1984". Yes, I know, quite a mouthful for a theme. Quite an eclectic selection too, from Madonna to Stevie Wonder to Aqua.

Here are some of the outfits I was privy to:

-Cher. The one from the video for "If I Could Turn Back Time". Yes, the Cher with the mesh & lycra bodysuit. The girl was game and had the body to rock it!

-Spice Girls. Scary Spice was a very hairy Lebanese guy with a boob tube.

-Britney, Gwen Stefani & Barbie made for a room full of blondes.

-Silverchair. The guy was literally wearing a silver chair. With straps.

-Lady Gaga. Another brave girl, this one wearing a lace body suit with nothing but underwear beneath! (with some amazing Marc Jacobs platform heels.)

-Guy With a Red Cape.

And I went as the cover of Kylie Minogue's single, '2 Hearts'. She has this amazing eye makeup and thought I would try to emulate it :) Hour and a half later, and voila! I think I kinda look scary so I apologise for frightening any kiddies around.

But imagine my dismay when some sheila rocks up as '2 Hearts' as well. Only with a jar containing two lamb hearts. Real ones. Ugh. Ha. Ha.
Amendment: Do you think I was close? The makeup I mean :)

Friday, November 20, 2009

To Write Love on Her Arms

This incredible organisation just blows my mind. Amongst all the pain and all the heartache, there exists this: light, hope and above all, love.

Here's how TWLOHA all began and it is worthy of a whole post, the true story of one amazing girl. These are not my words, but the words of one guy who said "That's enough, it has to stop."

Pedro the Lion is loud in the speakers and the city waits just outside our open windows. She sits and sings, cross-legged in the passenger seat, her pretty voice hiding in the volume. Music is a safe place and Pedro is her favourite. It hits me that she won't see this skyline for several weeks, and we will be without her. I lean forward, knowing this will be written, and I ask what she'd say if her story had an audience. She smiles. "Tell them to look up. Tell them to remember the stars."
I would rather write her a song, because songs don't wait to resolve, and because songs mean so much to her. Stories wait for endings, but songs are brave things bold enough to sing when all they know is darkness. These words, like most words, will be written next to midnight, between hurricane and harbor, as both claim to save her.

Renee is 19. When I meet her, cocaine is fresh in her system. She hasn't slept in 36 hours and she won't for another 24. It is a familiar blur of coke, pot, pills and alcohol. She has agreed to meet us, to listen and to let us pray. We ask Renee to come with us, to leave this broken night. She says she'll go to rehab tomorrow, that she isn't ready now. It is too great a change. We pray and say goodbye and it is hard to leave without her.

She has known such great pain; haunted dreams as a child, the near-constant presence of evil ever since. She has felt the touch of awful naked men, battled depression and addiction, and attempted suicide. Her arms remember razor blades, fifty scars that speak of self-inflicted wounds. Six hours after I meet her, she is feeling trapped, two groups of "friends" offering opposite ideas. Everyone is asleep. The sun is rising. She drinks long from a bottle of liquor, takes a razor blade from the table and locks herself in the bathroom. She cuts herself, using the blade to write "FUCK UP" large across her left forearm.

The nurse at the treatment center finds the wound several hours later. The center has no detox, names her too great a risk, and does not accept her. For the next five days, she is ours to love. We become her hospital and the possibility of healing fills our living room with life. It is unspoken and there are only a few of us, but we will be her church, the body of Christ coming alive to meet her needs, to write love on her arms.

She is full of contrast, more alive and closer to death than anyone I've known, like a Johnny Cash song or some theatre star. She owns attitude and humor beyond her 19 years, and when she tells me her story, she is humble and quiet and kind, shaped by the pain of a hundred lifetimes. I sit privileged but breaking as she shares. Her life has been so dark yet there is some soft hope in her words, and on consecutive evenings, I watch the prettiest girls in the room tell her that she's beautiful. I think it's God reminding her.

I've never walked this road, but I decide that if we're going to run a five-day rehab, it is going to be the coolest in the country. It is going to be rock and roll. We start with the basics; lots of fun, too much Starbucks and way too many cigarettes.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Would anyone mind?

Do you think anyone would mind if I showed them all a video about Jesus?
Do you think anyone would shift uncomfortably in their seats? Do you think anyone would stand up and walk away? Do you think anyone's heart would start beating faster and faster and their face redden?

I do. Because mine certainly does when a video is shown mocking, teasing, insulting the man/god who I revere, who epitomised love.
And yet. That's okay. No, not only is it 'okay' and acceptable but encouraged, promoted and rewarded. The culture of this day says "If you want to be admired, seen as intelligent and cultured and open-minded, all you need to do is voice your opinion and add to the crowd's clamor that Jesus-followers are stupid, ignorant, blind and bigoted."

Where's the tolerance then? Where's the need to 'respect everyone's opinions?' Where's the open-mindedness then? Oh sorry. I forgot. That's only for Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Mormons, Scientologists, Atheists, Agnostics, Jews (or maybe not, poor souls), and so on and so forth.
Somehow, I don't think anyone would dare show a video mocking Mohammad or the Muslim faith. And rightly so, because no-one's faith should be, but mocking Jesus? Oh please. That's old news.

I know this blog is usually about all things fashion, but I just had to get this out, or else some poor colleague will unknowingly be on the receiving end of my frustration.

No-one has to agree, or believe me, or even nod politely. All that's needed is a little reciprocal respect.