Apparently I'm a rebel. I wasn't aware of that.
I do a lot of crazy shit, yes. I drink to excess, yes. I have no respect for authority. I can be pretty rude, obnoxious and a downright bitch when the mood/ fellow bitch strikes me (sometimes literally) so. But 'rebel'?
I don't say this to be boastful. I don't think I'm a boastful person. My small-country town mentality has always taught me not to talk shit with the possibility of the shit being extracted and pelted back at you always being present.
That term 'rebel' has always had a pretty pathetic stigma attached to it for me.
'Rebels' were the kids back in secondary school (according to them anyway) that talked loudly, threw paper at the ceiling fan when the teacher's backs were turned and decided who was 'cool' and who wasn't. It goes without saying I was never a 'cool' kid. I hated all their guts because I saw them as a lame form of authority that were going to try and break me like the rest of the fucked up system and I hated everything about them. Though back then, pretty sure I hated everything and everyone.
But I was a quiet objector, I went about my dark days with a drooped head, staring at the scuffed toes of shoes, thinking about how much life sucked.
After the cattle station, after the year of drifting that followed from suburban cake shop to Agriculture course to horse training property in Northern Victoria, I was 17 and working like a dog with every second weekend off.
In those two days I was granted every fortnight to do as I pleased, I did just that and embraced the fucking fantastic thing of grog that made all my problems, pain and regret go away. My first weekend off from that job I went out to a country fundraising dance in the Victorian High Country. I drove to the dance in "Little Shit", my crappy little manual corolla car at the time that had a habit of unexpectedly rolling backwards when it was in a particular foul mood at me (which seemed to be all the time).
I borrowed another girl's clothes and didn't give a shit that a large percentage of my bra was showing to the whole township of Strathbogie (a handful of elderly people and their dogs aka 'daughters') as I used my fake ID to buy UDL (what was I thinking? Weak as fucking piss), dodging an accusation or two that the photo didn't look like me.
A guy ten years older than us from Perth wandered over to start buying us Passion Pop (the devil) and that's when the fun really started. In a far from glamorous state we were introduced to the actor Tom Long (Sea Change, Two Hands, The Dish, etc) and started betting which girl could have him pin her against the outside of the brick hall by the end of the night with only the horses in the paddock as witnesses, completely disregarding his wife that stood beside him.
When he asked Sarah and I what we did we replied, "Work at the pre-training horse farm."
"We don't ride though, we save that for weekends" I spluttered, thankfully inaudibly.
Three bottles of Pashion Pop later and we decided to head back to Sarah's up in the bogies. It wasn't till I was behind the wheel of Little Shit and weaving my way up a steep narrow mountain road in the pitch dark that I realised how completely wasted I was. To this day, I don't know how I didn't die. I was 17 years old driving on a New South Wales licence that I'd only had for a couple of months. But this still isn't even one of the worst things I've done.
After a few more bottles of Passion Pop I staggered to my makeshift bed and passed out cold and thank god I was lying on my stomach because I woke up spewing my guts out. Sarah, a girl I'd known for less than a week helped me mop myself up, smiling to hide her horrified and disgusted expression (and she worked with me picking up horse shit).
That was the first in a long long line of messy weekends to come that have lasted to this day- until I started working in the nightclub all Friday and Saturday nights to start combating my grog-spending, saving brain cells for year 12 study and piecing back together some sort of a semi-savable-reputation that wouldn't even have been put on life support if I still lived in a country town.
I'd like to think, that while I'm still not 'back on the rails' yet (though, I'm not really sure if I was even born 'on the rails'), now I can do the whole sloshed rebel trashbag with enough class to charm and disarm and enough savvy learned the hard way to control my self-destructiveness.
Luckily my friends aren't the judgemental sort and my family wouldn't notice if I died my hair black, got a tattoo saying "Saturn" smashed across my forehead and joined a blood-drinking cult, so I think I'm safe to keep up the trashbag lifestyle for now with one eye still firmly on the future and my goals.