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Head

Rocking

RUSTY SEA
Head Rocking


Copyright © 2021 by Rusty Sea.

Paperback ISBN: 978-1-63812-170-1


Ebook ISBN: 978-1-63812-171-8

All rights reserved. No part in this book may be produced and transmitted in any form or by
any means, electronic, or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information
storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

The views expressed in this work are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
reflect the views of the publisher hereby disclaims any responsibility for them.

Published by Pen Culture Solutions   11/18/2021

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CONTENTS

Introduction����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� vii
Chapter 1 The Launching Pad��������������������������������������������������������������� 1
Chapter 2 Building A Rocket���������������������������������������������������������������12
Chapter 3 The Astronaut����������������������������������������������������������������������23
Chapter 4 Rocket Fuel���������������������������������������������������������������������������34
Chapter 5 Countdown��������������������������������������������������������������������������44
Chapter 6 Blast Off�������������������������������������������������������������������������������52
Chapter 7 Breaking Thru the Atmosphere�����������������������������������������61
Chapter 8 Space�������������������������������������������������������������������������������������68
Chapter 9 Coming Down���������������������������������������������������������������������83
Chapter 10 Gravity����������������������������������������������������������������������������������88
Chapter 11 Down to Earth�������������������������������������������������������������������101
Chapter 12 Now for the Answer����������������������������������������������������������109
INTRODUCTION

Welcome to my story about building a rocket.

Here is a mini love story.

We stood outside Parliament station, Melbourne CBD. Looking down


at the subway I noticed a clock that read 3:33; how could I forget that?

I was with a girl, the one I had been looking for, who I thought was
going to be true love. She was talking to me about art and how she really
appreciates people who express honest, authentic, true art.

I had to bite my tongue. I wanted to chime in right then and say “I’m
doing that right now.” “I’m writing a book and it’s about that and I’m
writing it all from my heart.”

But I didn’t. Because I thought, “where is the humility in that?” What I


really wanted to do was to finish the book, wait till it becomes a global
phenomenon, and present her with a copy and say: “do you remember
that day outside parliament station?” At which point, she will realize how
much I care for her and fall madly in love with me. We will get married
have a family, buy a farm, dote over each other and have lots of people
and animals around to care for and love.

So what’s wrong with thinking like that?

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Chapter

The Launching Pad

When I thought about what I would name the first chapter it was a toss-up
between the launching pad and foundation. If I was to choose foundation I
was going to put in that really unpractical religious quote about the wise man
who built his house upon rock; and the foolish man who built his house upon
sand; my foundation was probably best described as being built on volcanic
rock! I decided to go with the launching pad - I just figured it’s important to
keep the rocket facing upright.

The launching pad takes me back to a time when my brother and one of
his mates came up to visit me in Nelson Bay� I was in my 20s, working
on a farm up in NSW, and my brother, I think, was driving trucks,
working for my uncle and had to do a drop near Newcastle so Nelson
Bay was the closest costal area to meet up and make a weekend out
of it� We were all slightly touched and little bit hung-over from our
upbringing - adventurous kids trying to be adults� We had some rocket
shaped fireworks and thought it would be a laugh to light them up on
a nearby popular beach walking track area� So we plant the fireworks
in the sand, light the fuse, stand back and just before the fireworks are
about to go off, it gets blown over by the wind and is aiming directly at
us… then booshka�
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Rusty Sea

Booshka can basically mean anything and can replace words, I booshka didn’t
know that.

Booshka the fireworks go off and we are running and ducking for cover –
like we were under attack. It was childish, irresponsible, general public
threatening behaviour, but it was the most fun I’d had in a while.

I’d been locked up down in a Valley which I will get too.

The launching pad for me was a white weatherboard house with a picket
fence in Waratah Street. That was my first and my last home. Growing
up there I remember one of my dad’s favourite musicians was John
Williamson who sang that song Waratah Street. I always play it in my
head and “when I go walking down Waratah Street “only I change the next
lines in the song to what the hell happened, where did my life go, I swear
to God the devil blew his breath on my home.

That’s what it seemed like at the time. I repeated that song to my mum
some years later and she said that was the best way to describe it. In
hindsight it may or may not have been the devil, more likely just a family
that had been affected by alcoholism and addiction.

Before I talk about any of that I want to talk about the first ten years
of my life. What I can remember, when it all seemed normal and reality
hadn’t hit yet.

When life was full of wonder, fairy tales, nursery rhymes, full of love, joy
and happiness. In hindsight as a kid I would have preferred to have some
more realistic preparation to life rather than being filled up with bullshit.
Humpty dumpty probably jumped.

I was a sensitive, affectionate, pretty happy kid. My mum tells me that


I was a cute well behaved baby. It’s always nice to hear that. But she was
always worried about me because I used to rock my head back and forth
in my cot whenever I heard noise or music. Even an electric power saw
would set me off and there I would go, back and forth, side to side.
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Head Rocking

I’m not real proud to admit this and feel a little ashamed about it, and very
fearful that I will be harshly judged and labelled by all the kind people in
the world but I still rock my head back and forth… I plan to stop before
the time I finish this book or when my neck snaps and my head falls off.
I don’t know why I do it; it’s bad for my neck and makes me feel like a bit
of a freak. I keep it secret from most people, I can control when I do it
but it’s a hard one to let go off because it soothes me.

Back in the olden days they used to think that people that rock their head were
cursed by the devil. I reckon they weren’t too far from the truth.

Another strange habit I used to have when I was younger was playing
with my mum’s elbow skin. I know it might seem a bit weird that’s
probably because I’m a bit weird. I just liked the feel of its cold skin and
I guess it was my way of being affectionate. I loved playing with my Lego
and pretending to have a farm with plastic animals and fences. Those
days were the best when you didn’t let thinking get in the way of your
imagination. These days my imagination is my thinking.

The Man from Snowy River was my favourite movie. I could recite it
word for word you can bid the mob bod day. Ironically in the film the
main actor guy tries to rescue a woman off a cliff.

So it all seemed pretty normal in my house as a kid. Dad was a painter, he


moved over from Scotland when he was about 18. He used to come home
from work every night and pass out on the couch. It’s hard to know if it
was from exhaustion, beer or both. If I was lucky he’d let me sit at the back
of his legs when he lay in the foetal position on the couch - which wasn’t
all that good because it put me in the firing line. Mum was a nurse born
in Australia to a Dutch father (Which I’ve inherited his bald receding
hairline, thanks Opa) and a German mother who grew up in war times
and actually met and shook Hitler’s hand.

Mum used to dress us up like hobo children, we went to a Catholic


primary school that made us wear a poo brown woollen fleece that made

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you itchy. Every Monday we went to assembly to sing Kum-ba-ya, what


a hoot. I couldn’t cross my legs as a kid so I sat there uncomfortably for
what seemed like hours while the music teacher banged her guitar and
made us sing. Most Sundays we went to church, that was also a painful
event. I’m not writing this to be anti-religious. I was baptised as a Catholic
and I think any faith is good faith, provided it’s not killing millions
of people. I have my own understanding of a God these days and he
wouldn’t want me, as a kid, to sit on hard wooden seats, get a sore bum
and be completely bored out of my brain and listen to a man dressed in
a white cape crap on about stuff that doesn’t make any sense to someone
who likes to eat play dough.

I went back to that church in recent times and they did this thing at
the start were they call all the kids up the front then let them go play
in another room. In my head I was thinking hallelujah there is a God.
Church was slowly replaced by hangovers and instead of hard chairs to
sit on we slept on hard floors while the adults got hammered, argued
and spat vile sickness at each other. I used to hate their behaviour when
they were drinking. You would either get a slimy bastard or a flirtatious
embarrassment. If I had a choice I would of have stuck with the hard
chairs.

Now is probably a good time to tell you that I relate a lot of life situations
to songs and you may have to do a bit of research to understand the
meaning of what I’m trying to say. Look out for highlighted words. We
grew up listening to bands like The Doors, Eurythmics, Dolly Parton and
stuff like that. Those songs can remind me of times being in an old car
in the country or whatever it may be. I like the way my mind remembers
that. I often tell people to listen to a certain song to explain a point then
later I ask them to see if they did, then I watch their body language.
Generally within about 5 seconds a big fat ‘No’ appears. I could be wrong
and my perception could be an illusion.

Here is something else that may be an illusion and that is the fear of telling some
parts of my story. Growing up I remember telling people all the dysfunctional

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Head Rocking

stuff going on in my life and I got the impression that it pushed people away,
I don’t want that to happen with you. In saying that, the idea of this book
is based on having the freedom to be me without society suppressing the
depressing. I spent my whole life fearful of judgement, worrying about what
other people think of me and fearful of rejection - and what do you know, I’ve
experienced nothing but that. So here is a 180. I’m speaking my truth and
whatever else is on my mind.

I’m going to mix it up and go off topic. I am going to make you laugh, feel
positive and warm within and once you have read this you will maintain
happiness forever and once I’ve finished writing this people are going to start
liking me again. Ha-ha

My grandad loved to use the saying “laugh and the world laughs with you,
cry and you cry alone”. I have experienced that to be true and it pisses me
off that it’s that way. We all want to be happy, liked and wanted. I want it
so bad it gives me anxiety and has an opposite effect.

Mallacoota was where our family would holiday most years. We used to
camp in a caravan park. I can’t remember all that much about the whole
thing, but I do have a few clear memories. We would ride around all day
on push bikes and there was this old broken down tractor we would play
on which was near the toilet in the centre of the park. Some of the other
boys and I would have a peeing competition in the toilet to see who could
pee the highest up the trough. I reckon every boy around the world has
tried that at one stage in their life. I remember when I hit the roof one
day I was chuffed with myself but there was no one to witness it as I
basked in my glory.

I met heaps of kids and fell in love with girls. We went to lots of different
beach locations, met lots of different people, did lots of boogie boarding
and fishing. My ole’ man loves fishing and it was a really nice place to
spend some quality time with my dad. ‘But don’t make any noise you’ll
scare the fish.’ Years later I heard someone talk about how his old man

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hadn’t been there for him. He explained the fishing thing in a comical way
and Jesus I laughed. It took me back!

As usual the adults got drunk most nights and the behaviour got worse
as the years went by. One of the last and not so pleasant experiences I
had there, was when I was about 12 years old, I somehow managed to
get drunk and passed out in the front of someone’s garden and woke to
people trying to shave off my eye brows off. Luckily, they didn’t get me
because I woke up and freaked out.

It’s an ole’ time classic to shave eyebrows when people pass out. We got this
French guy one night when I was up in the Hunter Valley NSW- we just
took one of his eyebrows off, when he woke up he was wild. Nice guy but a
bit of a dick. He was shell shocked by the culture he experienced in Australia
particularly the farm we were working on. I remember one day I took him
up to the tip Perfume Valley. It’s called that because we dumped all the dead
animals’ corpses in it and on a hot day it would smell almost as bad as he
did every morning when I’d pick him up in the feed truck. From that point
forward I thought all French people smell. Slightly narrow minded. So we
were on are way up to Perfume Valley on a quad bike and I was telling him
that the aboriginals still live in the caves and if you see one, run. He had this
inquisitive scared look on his face when we got up to the tip I saw a goanna
half way up a tree. I drove up alongside the tree so that his knees were nearly
touching it and start yelling come on ya’ bastard and I started banging the
tree. Then I pointed and yelled out abo - I have never seen anyone shit their
pants like that before. He ran for about 400metres before he pulled up. It was
the funniest thing I’d seen.

Back to the story. Apart from Mallacoota we also went up to my aunty


and uncle’s farm in Yackandandah. I reckon whoever named that town
must have had a stutter. This is where I was first introduced to horses.
The first horse I rode was named Lucky. Ironic name when I think about
it. It was lucky I didn’t fall off and kill myself at the speed we hit going
through the bush one day.

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Head Rocking

I loved the country life and still do. For a long time I associated the
suburbs as where bad shit happened and the country as calm. Dad and
my uncle would take us shooting, mostly for rabbits and foxes. There’s
nothing quite like showing the kids how to blow the brains out of innocent
animals. And of course be quiet you’ll scare the rabbits.

I used to like going to the bottle shop when I was a kid because dad would
always buy me a coke. I became accustomed to the behaviour, it all seemed
pretty normal. Work all week, drink harder on weekends, fight and on
Sunday mornings they would lock their door, it used to bug the hell out
of me. If we kept annoying them dad would come out half naked and we
would get the wooden spoon. I used to kind of like winding him up - he
acted like such a moron when he lost his shit. He used to have this saying;
he’d make you come to him and if you didn’t come he would threaten the
wooden spoon and it was “where would you be if I hadn’t called you?” He
thought it was the funniest thing but I hated it.

My brother and I would gang up on my sister. We used to call her piglet


and make pig faces at her. I did this with my mate to a girl at primary
school and we got suspended for two days and they told us we were the
first kids to be suspended at that primary school in ten years. I don’t know
why they told us that - we wore that like a badge of honour.

My sister got her pay back later when she dacked me in the middle of the
school yard. I chased her into the Principal’s office. She was smart enough
to go there. Luckily for her because I wanted blood. Another thing she
would do when we were hanging it on her is just start screaming for no
reason. Dad would catch on and we would get the wooden spoon. I got
her back one day. We used to run to the house phone climb up on the
chair and answer it. So when we heard the phone the race was on. One
day she beat me out of the gates and slammed a door in my face. I still
managed to get there, just as she was climbing up the chair I pushed her
off and broke her collar bone. Ha! And what made it worse was that mum
didn’t believe that she was in pain and made her go clothes shopping
trying on outfits the next day.

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But not long after that I experienced the same pain. My brother and his
friends thought it would be a cool idea to throw people up in the air in
the backyard. I had a go, landed on concrete and broke my arm. Mum
didn’t believe me and was too pissed to drive to the hospital, so I lay down
in pain for hours trying to convince her. I also broke my other arm on a
skate board. Without being too descriptive doctors and nurses got a little
bit out of control with us and the neighbourhood kids. Looking back we
didn’t know any better.

Healthy boundaries got mistaken for big brick walls which we built up
around ourselves.

It’s monkey see, monkey do!

Speaking of apes (although I don’t want to insult the apes), my teacher


at preschool was a sick one.

One day I was playing with the other kids and the teacher picked me up
and threw me across the room. I have no idea why he did that. It was like
I had been unconscious and came too. It’s the only thing I can remember
about kinder. Later on I told mum about it and she replied “Yeah he was
a bit of a sicko and later got the sack”.

From there I went to prep and because of my naturally gifted abilities


they thought it was probably best to not burn the torch too quick with
me and decided to keep me down in prep. It took them a year to work out
I was deaf and had a speech impairment. This required getting tubes put
in my ears which meant I couldn’t put my head under water so I didn’t
learn how to swim until I nearly drowned a couples times.

One time I was drowning at the pool and mum could see me drowning
but was on the other side of the pool trying to get to me. She was yelling
at the guy who I was hitting under the water as I was going down. It was
almost as if he knew what was happening but he just didn’t really want

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to get involved. I think he made out like he was deaf or some shit. Didn’t
matter mum ripped him a new arsehole anyway.

So after staying down a year in prep it meant I was always one year older
than the other kids and in about grade 4-5 I had a growth spurt which
resulted in me getting Osgood-Schlatter Disease (which is basically really
sore knees). If I played too much sport I’d be on crutches. I used to play
AFL and basketball and I was just starting to peak. I was the fastest
sprinter in the school in grade 5 which felt good; I had an advantage, lots
of rocket fuel.

Everyone used to say I wouldn’t be able beat Suzy, the fastest runner in
the school. I remember the day I raced her we were toe and toe the whole
race, I was just playing with her and in the last 20 metres I smoked her. So
you can imagine how chuffed I was when the doctor said I will no longer
play sport until I stopped growing.

At this point I was a foot taller than all the kids in my year level. That
probably wouldn’t have mattered because I always felt a little off centre
anyway. I was skinny, lanky, dopey and was getting picked on hard. Didn’t
help I sang this real gay song in the choir.

My editor mentioned don’t say gay in case I offended gay people and I
thought unless I’m parading half naked in a drunken stupor up the main
street of town I don’t reckon they will be offended. Straight away you’re
going to presume that I’m a homophobe but it’s not true I just want the
rainbow back.

We went to Scotland a few times to visit family. The first time I can’t
remember because I was 18 months old. The second time I was around
9 years old. We went to Disneyland before Scotland and went to Mickey
Mouse’s house or some shit. It looked like candy land, there was this real
big comfy looking couch inside and my sister and I raced up to do the big
arse plant on it. Unfortunately when we landed we found out, the hard
way, it was made of solid concrete. I can remember that.

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When we arrived in Scotland, we stayed with my Scottish grandparents.


They were, and have always been good to us kids. Grandma’s got a heart
of gold. She’s old school, you know “waste not want not”. Dinner on the
table at 5, the house always immaculate and she writes letters to people
wishing them well or sending them birthday cards.

Back home in Australia, we used to wait outside for the postman to arrive
around our birthday time because Grandma would always send a card
with a few pound in it. When we were kids it was a bit of a novelty trying
to work out how much money it was when you’d convert it to Australian
dollars and what toy we could get with it.

My grandparents are always telling us these old Scottish sayings that are
hard to work out. On the fridge at their house they have a magnet that
says ‘Our family tree is full of nuts’.

My fondest memories of Scotland were: the Loch Ness monster, iron


brew type of drink, bon boons and highland toffees, a type of lolly (or
sweets as the Scots would say) and playing SOCCER with my cousins.

Not long after that trip the family structure starts to break down. So this
brings us near to the end of chapter 1.

The next lines I write apparently aren’t cool and if you research how to
write a book they say avoid writing about the moments of self-doubt. You
know when your mind would tell you things like; maybe I’m not cut out
to write a book, maybe my story is just standard life shit, maybe I’m just
a loser that won’t amount to anything. Maybe everyone is writing about
their life and I’m competing against people with more interesting lives.
Maybe my editor is Right and I should leave out the writing process and
just stick to the story. I don’t know if I can keep it interesting and funny.
Next chapter there’s like a dark storm cloud of shit, too much negative
stuff- people won’t like me.

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Head Rocking

With all of this information from my editor who twisted my book, the
five minutes I spent on Google researching how to write a book from the
knock backs (which were mostly non-replies from the publishers), I’ve
come to realise something. Fuck what they think. I’m doing this for me, I
reckon that should be the advice you give to people when they are trying
to write a book.

This book is going to have imperfections, swear words, and Slang it may
not be spelt right but I bet you can work it out and if you can’t what’s the
big deal. Not every blacksmith can fit a perfect shoe.

I went on a date whilst I was writing this book and the girl told me to stop
doubting myself then I explained why I get anxiety. She laughed at me
she had an interest in books. I read her a line that I was thinking about
putting in the book based off this song we heard when we were kids about
kookaburras sits on the electric wire jumping up and down laughing with
its pants on fire. The line I wanted to put in my book was it’s not true
sometimes the kookaburra just sits there. She looked at me like I was a
freak and a few days later I got ‘the call’ (let’s just be friends). That’s like
emotionally punching someone in the gut. I thought let’s not be friends,
why would I want to be friends with someone who rejects me? Anyway,
God forbid I end the first chapter on a bad note; it would be like falling
out of a boat, turning into a goat and not being able to float.

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Chapter

Building A Rocket

I don’t know where to start� I was going to talk about the different ideas I
had for naming the book just like how I started chapter 1 - how creative�
Here are some examples: As it is, Sticky sankara, Wild mind, another
shitty book about a guy with depression, Mindfulness colouring-in book
for people who can’t be bothered meditating, I thought of heaps� In the
end I worked out that I had developed an attachment to the idea and my
mind was making me feel ill�

Hang on this chapter is meant to be the guts� Let me try again� This was
my original idea but it didn’t sit well with me� I was going to say how
someone once told me, after I shared, that I’ve got the gold� I have this
belief that I can do anything I put my mind too and that my brother
once said to me you’re the first person I know to own a racehorse on the
dole� I don’t really know why I felt the need to say that stuff maybe I was
identifying with my false sense of self huh! I decided to keep it simple
and name it my original idea Building a Rocket (which I figure is just like
peeing up a trough)�

Start at the bottom and work to the top� It seems logical and I’m sure
we can all relate to that� I always felt that little bit more justified when

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Head Rocking

people would say I had to start right at the bottom picking up shit to get
to where I’m at today. I always thought in my mind - no you didn’t. I did. I
literally picked up horse shit for ten years. It’s actually kind of meditating.
I used to work with this really enthusiastic foreman who would not just
use a pitch fork he’d get down on his knees and use his hands. Crazy old
cobber - that’s what he called everyone, Cobber.

That story is coming for now we return back home from Scotland.

The folks decide to sell the family home and buy a new house just up the
hill from our 1st one. So it is goodbye to Waratah Street.

This was around the time my parents broke up.

I was living with my grandparents for awhile whilst my parents got there
shit together, then I moved into the house on the hill with my mum by
which stage she had found herself a new partner the toy boy. The toy boy
went to the same school as my brother. My brother was friends with his
younger brothers. There used to be full on punch ups in our house. The
whole situation was messed up. The toy boy’s brothers would punch on
with the toy boy because they knew it wasn’t right. So it’s fair to say my
brother did it tough at high school.

We all did it tough. My brother, sister and I all got asked that impossible
question - Who do you want to live with? It was shit on both sides of
the fence. My brother couldn’t live with my mum; he didn’t get on with
the toy boy so he lived with Dad. That was until Dad kicked him out.
I can remember the day my brother arrived at Mum’s and broke down.
I had never felt compassion like that before and I was ready to fight for
him, literally, to stay with us. He slept in my room. But the honeymoon
didn’t last long and it was only a matter of time before I cracked him over
the head with a 2 litre frozen water bottle because I couldn’t take him
anymore. He used to come home late at night and wake me up all the
time. So mum moved him out to the shed.

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He lived in the shed that just could just fit a single bed, it was summer
time and every day you’d see him come flying out gasping for air because
he’d pass out in there the night before and wake up in the middle of a hot
day by which time the shed had turn into an oven.

Even though my family was fucked up, if anyone insulted them I would
lose it.

I developed rage that had been bottled up for a long time. I would come
home from primary school after a day of being picked on, neglected,
abandoned and messed with. I would explode and punch myself in the
head, throw myself at walls - it was the only thing that could numb the
pain. I may have just been on the spectrum who knows.

I remember the day really clearly when I finally cracked. It was bliss.

I was at the top of this slight decline that had those round wood posts
that stop cars all down the side of the hill. One of my friends (he was
a bit touched too) came flying past sprinting, trying to outrun the ring
leader school bully who was chasing him. As they went past me the bully
tripped and slid into one of the wooden posts. I said ‘Ha suffer!’ He got up
and with the whole bully attitude and spat back “What did you say?” He
came at me and before he had a chance to hit me, I beat the crap of him.

After that fight I cried. It was like the biggest release of emotion. I’ve cried
heaps after fights and not from physical pain. From that day forward I
began to fight back. I didn’t get picked on again at that primary school.
But within the first week of high school in Year 7 I was in a fight with a
Year 10.

I fought heaps in high school, it was a release. I remember one fight in


particular because after this fight I was left alone. My friend and I were
throwing water balloons at people in the courtyard, as you do. I threw
one and it hit this guy flush on his head and popped. He came up to me
and said “I’ll see you at lunchtime tonight!” So we were laughing, yeah

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Head Rocking

right, lunchtime tonight. Then lunchtime comes and it’s on. I got the
drop on him and popped a blood vessel in his nose I swung a hay maker
and missed. He grabbed my T-shirt and ripped it over my head ice
hockey style and kicked the crap out of me; he was kicking my head into
a brick wall and I almost enjoyed it. I was used to it. Eventually I broke
free, went after him, told him I’d kill him, he ran away. My white school
T-shirt was almost completely red with blood. I went to the boys’ toilets
to see where all the blood was coming from. It wasn’t mine; it was his
from leaning over kicking me. I just felt all these lumps in my head and
as I’m walking out, the whole school started chanting my name. No shit.
It was pretty funny and surreal. I was escorted to the principal’s office by
two coordinators. On my way there I passed my girlfriend, she was shell
shocked, poor thing. I got a two week out of school suspension. I would
have got expelled only the welfare coordinator was kind to me.

I used to have to go home from school the back way so I didn’t get beaten
up. One day in Year 9 my friend and I had people waiting at train stations
for us, they were armed with knives and bats. I’m not trying to boast or
sound tough but this is what I dealt with. On that day we came prepared.
I had my brother and his mates and my friend had his dad and an uncle
waiting in a parked car.

I’d be in the welfare coordinators office three times a week because I’d
break down in class or tell a teacher where to go. I was a teacher’s worst
nightmare. The welfare coordinator gave me a card that said: if Russell
doesn’t feel well he has permission to come to my office. I thought that
was great, it was a get out of jail free card. I used to flick it at the teacher
and as I was walking out I’d tell them to “fuck off ”. If I got caught smoking
cigarettes and if the teacher told me to put it out I would say “no” and
keep smoking it. I figured they would punish me anyway. If they gave me
an inner school suspension I’d tell them where to go so I would get an
outer and take a day off.

Because I was running off the rails real bad at school mum spoke with
the welfare coordinator and decided to send me up to stay with some

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family friends for a little while. That didn’t work out to good. One night
when I was staying there a man I will name ‘the devil’ came into my room
to say good night, he was stinking of alcohol. I had this sixth sense that
something wasn’t right. After he left my room something bad happened.
I don’t know why I didn’t go up and check on my friend that night. I
should have trusted my gut and I could have stopped it. I held that guilt
in my chest for a long time. I didn’t want to believe it but later down
the track that person looked me in the eye and said ‘You remember that
night? Why didn’t you save me?’ Jesus that fucked me up. Even though
this person was known to tell a tall tale I don’t believe they were lying
about that. But either way there is a possibility that my whole tormented
twisted self could be based on a lie, in hindsight it shows you how much
power there is in attachment and ego identification.

From there I developed a thinking pattern that has wreaked havoc in my


life. It wasn’t caused by my friend; it was an accumulation of numerous
things. The problem was that although I wasn’t told, I thought it, sensed
it and it was like my worst nightmare came to life. In my mind I thought
I was telepathic because I sensed it and kept sensing things and kept
getting shit things.

I’m going off topic now. I’m caught in the cycle and I’m on spin. It’s the highly
anxious bit before the machine turns off. It’s only a matter of time before
someone comes along, pushes the button and water flows tears. Depression
kicks in then slowly I start refilling, feeling a little better about myself, I get
to the rinse stage where I’m trudging through life and before I know it I’m
spinning out of control and the cycle starts again.

What an analogy! I just thought of that. I’m a mo-fucking genius. I’ll call it
the brain washing machine. I’m sure there has been a Psychologist that’s used
that on a client.

If it’s ok with you I’d like to do a little exercise called self-evaluation. Warning!
This could make you judge and resent and I know there are kids starving
in Africa and people a lot less fortunate than me. I’m not trying to compete.

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Head Rocking

God’s got a funny sense of humour and quite often shows me the world is flat.
You know what else is flat? My feet and that’s where I’ll start. My left ankle is
painful and arthritic, I’ve had blood clots in both legs which gave me varicose
veins. I have Osgood-schlatters disease in both my knees and I have a scar on
my right knee from when I tore the medial ligament. I wore away most of the
cartilage in both my knees when I got run over by a mob of horses. My knees
felt weak until I got bucked off my horse and kicked in the exact spot where I
had surgery on my knee and dislocated knee cap, “but don’t worry life is bound
to get better” I had pilonidal sinus above my butt - now that’s a serious pain
in the arse! I have love handles - that’s a perk. I broke both my arms and just
recently I got so mad at my pigheaded brother I damaged the ligaments in my
wrist hitting a punching bag. My neck is wrecked from rocking my head and
I’m going bald, grey and have a cone head. But wait, there’re more!

I have got depression, bad people skills and social anxiety. I have obsessive
compulsive thinking and OCD starring- for some really unknown fucked up
reason when I’m around people I keep thinking that they’re thinking that I’m
looking at their private parts. It happens in both my normal and peripheral
view. I get obsessed with thinking I make others feel uncomfortable and it gets
that awkward my head hurts and I have to remove them from my view. I’m yet
to learn the art of sneak peak. The way I communicate is more like dingdong
and as soon as I meet you dingdong. My mind is rapid and has a constant flow
of completely insane, off the wall thoughts. I constantly feel guilty about shit
that I haven’t done. I’ve had problems with addiction, my self-esteem is low. I
have a tendency to completely flip out and lose my shit. And get a major sense
of abandonment out of everyone and everything. I’m the guy on the school bus
with dog shit on his shoes. I here this a lot, “You’re too sensitive”.

I fear I won’t be able to change no matter how many analogies I’m told.

So that was part A of the exercise now part B. This is what my therapist said
when I was feeling low. Lying on her floor, she says, ‘that’s the judge in you tell
it to piss off‘. That stuck with me, I’ve tried to out think it, accept it, change
it, control it, breath into it; you name it I’ve tried it. Psychology is prostitution
for the mind just thought id ad that in there.

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Belief that things won’t change is powerful when the patterns are engrained.
But I have a little bit hope today, kind heart and soon a rocket.

I’m back, that was a rant! I hope you’re ok after hearing that. I’m sure it
sounded a bit too self-centred, probably sick but it’s definitely got no sugar on
it. And if you’re not ok just remember ‘that’s the judge in you, tell it to piss off.’

There was one good thing that came out of high school. My first love the
dove! You know the one that takes your heart and breaks it and makes
you think, hang on, this didn’t happen in the movie. It took me years to
get over her I can remember when she asked me out (or got her friend to).
It was outside the gym. I was going to say I don’t know what she saw in
me but I’d be lying. I’m not all bad even though I was a messed up kid. I
didn’t have to pretend to be messed up like so many kids do trying to be
cool, I genuinely was. She was probably trying to save me or felt sorry for
me. She had such a kind heart and was raised by a loving, caring, good,
valued, level headed family. She was the complete opposite of me.

She was an A grade student - I would come to class stoned. We wrote


love letters. I would watch her play netball and hang out as much as her
parents would let me. They accepted me, they just had rules. I remember
breaking down one day at their house; the love and warmth they had
for each other seemed so foreign that something inside me just snapped
me. I couldn’t take it - I wanted that. I didn’t know how to do emotions,
especially empathy. I remember she came to school all upset saying her
guinea pig had died. I just couldn’t relate. I was full of hate. Love was a
debate at that point in time and she was the only love and support I felt
like I was receiving. Hers and the welfare coordinator’s.

I haven’t finished with this topic, I will come back and put another three word
rhyme in. Just give me a minute, I got to explain this first.

So after my parents split when I was ten years old, Dad pretty much
decided his fathering responsibilities were over and I experienced a lot
of abandonment since. When it comes to emotion, he’s like the actor in

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Head Rocking

the show Dexter; it doesn’t make sense to him or he’s just made out of
tougher stuff. I would still go visit him every second weekend because I
felt sorry for him, he would buy me shit. I always had an episode after
seeing Dad where I’d lose it and break down.

Dad married a born-again Christian the worst type of bible basher. No


offense of course, most people are open to faith but closed when it’s
forced. I associated God with her and lost faith. Like most kids I hated
my step parents: a toy boy and a born-again Christian. No wonder I was
always trying to be nice and appreciative. Hoping that they would accept
me, so I wouldn’t be abandoned again. I helped Dad completely revamp
her garden - worked my arse off. She walked in one day and slammed the
door. I asked what was wrong and she replied: “There would be nothing
wrong if it wasn’t for you fucking kids!”I lost it! and spat out an honest
and true description of her. I’m really good at that.

My stepmother had given my sister a similar experience a few days earlier.


But my sister threw a saucepan at her then sent them dog shit in the
mail… lol. I left Dad’s, he came after me for a minute but he bitched out.
Looking after your own needs was priority one.

After that, for three years Dad lived a five minute drive away and we didn’t
see him. I think the next time I heard from him was when I came back
to Melbourne from Tassie (which I’ll get to). Dad married three times.
He certainly knows how to pick them. That’s one of quality I like about
him - he’s not worried about other people’s expectations.

Around the same time Dad stopped parenting, Mum kind of did too.
Only difference was Mum cooked and cleaned and made a bit more effort.
But for both of them it was all about looking after their own needs. If
you go looking for love in my family you might be looking in the wrong
place. They will either give you help with one hand and a slap with the
other: perfect balance I guess! We were taught look after yourself and
fuck everyone else.

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The toy boy that got fat while we starved; metaphorically and literally. I
hated that fucker and still do even though I know it harms me. He was
freaking me out like a Counterfeit. He used to come home from the footy
club stoned and pissed, mimicking some guy’s saying about fucking their
wife - he was such a fake. The behaviour was hideous he was sick of
himself and I was sick of him too.

Bus-train-bus is how we got to school. Mum would give my sister and


me 5 bucks each everyday which had to buy a $2 something bus ticket
and lunch. We still somehow managed to pay for smokes. We used to
buy a pack every day and put one on tick every day with this Asian milk
bar lady. We would aim at selling one pack and smoking one pack. We
used to get from 50 cents up to 2 dollars per cigarette and it managed to
keep us going.

We worked out that at school if you walked around smoking you wouldn’t
get caught because you could always maintain a safe distance from the
teacher. I thought of the idea - it was revolutionary. Everyone was doing
it and the teachers kept tripping out that they were smelling smoke we
would do with smoking dope as well. Anyway when I was busy smoking
I wasn’t paying attention to my first true love the dove sent from above
who flew past and shit on my heart.

I always like to make real whacked out stupid rhymes just to take the
piss out of all the wannabe gangster rappers that aren’t King, God or
phenomenal. The Dove was hanging around the canteen scrounging
around for chips and another mangy dove came along and shared his
normal life with her. When I got sent up to country Victoria because
things at home were messy and I was running off the rails and getting a
little too hard to look after, my beautiful dove flew off with the other dog
dove I mean. This happened half way through Year 9.

My sudden exit might have hurt my first true love. I wish I hadn’t left.
I had been up in country Victoria for two weeks when I came down to

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visit her. After over four hours on the train and a 20 minute walk, I got
a cold reception. She basically blew me off. That was a long trip home.

A week later she told me about the mangy dove. I never beat him up; I
surprised myself with that one because I thought about it.

I was now 14 turning 15 and doing a horse course on how to look after
racehorses in country Victoria. Mum figured since I liked horses so much
why not send me out on my own for some big life changes. I felt Like a
Rolling Stone.

When I arrived in the country I had to find somewhere to live. I think


the first place was a seedy motel room but it was costing too much so I
buddied up with a wannabe cowboy. He turned out to be full of shit, a
big ego, no heart, who gave me a cup on my 21st birthday that said ‘21 and
still wanking’. Wow, what a friend.

He got me a room at a boarding house. Only thing with this room is there
was a redhead guy called Pat who had to walk through my room to get
to his. That was a little intense, especially since I rocked my head. It was
a small room with a single bed in it. If you’re lying in the bed you can see
three doors the one on the left was Pat’s room the one on the right was
the exit, and a girl called Bluey lived in the double door straight ahead.
We had a fling so that wasn’t so bad. In fact she was my second jiggy jig;
my first was in a park on my 15th birthday.

Chris was the teacher of the racehorse course. He became an honest


friend, mentor and kind person to rely on and played a big part in my life
in the years that followed.

When I first lobbed up in the country to do the horse course, I was an


angry, messed up kid who had a problem with authority. Chris and I
didn’t see eye to eye, to say the least. He was the first teacher I’d ever
met who told me to fuck off. He just didn’t care, he was the funniest guy,
short, fat, with glasses, he was always laughing and taking the piss. If you’d

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filmed the shenanigans in the stables at 4 o’clock in the morning it would


be the funniest comedy skit you would ever see.

We had this guy doing the course who was straight off the ranch, he’d
never been exposed to society, he was pretty fresh and we planted these
male porn magazines in his bag. Later we pulled them out in front of class
and he was mortified - it was the funniest thing. Chris and I developed
a great respect for each other. He had a soft spot for me and looked after
me and I worked in stables for him, he’d pay me and shout me beers and
tasty camp ovens. Some might say he was a bad influence but beers and
camp ovens was a big improvement from where I’d been. He had a border
collie dog called Marlboro that would get beers for you out of the fridge.

Chris taught us heaps about horses. We jumped them out of gates


(barriers), rode them, fell off them, fed them, picked up their shit, and
treated them. I mostly strapped because I was too big and heavy and had
bad knees. That was disheartening but I was a gun strapper because I
connected with horses on an inner level.

Me and the wannabe cowboy would go to the bakery on the way out to
the farm where we did theory, and listen to Mr. Jones on the way. That
felt good; the country life is for me and at the end of the course I applied
to get into another two year horse course they had and they knocked me
back because I was too young. The wannabe cowboy who was all full of
piss and wind said, “You send that there boy back down to the city ‘n he’ll
be on them hard drugs in no time”.

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3

Chapter

The Astronaut

I put on my astronaut suit which was really a Nike tracksuit� I was Pale
faced, stoned and had a hostile demeanour, in this suit I’m protected from
the atmosphere of the outside world and all I can hear is this noise, “bom
bom owecka owecka bom bom owecka owecka”� Everything slows down�

I’m in a backyard on a concrete slab, there’s empty spray paint cans and
paint filled plastic bags everywhere that we have been using to breathe out
of� Car door slams� Shit! Mum’s home! I look over at my friend and he’s
had too much and not responding� Fuck! I start to panic� Wake the fuck
up! My mum’s home! Slap slap! No response� I start pacing� What the
fuck am I going to do? I hide spray cans, bags, turn the hose on and spray
my friend with it� He comes too, within a second of her sitting upright
Mum walks out: “Hi kids!” “Hi Mum!”

It’s called chroming and it was my first experience of getting high� I used
to always ask the person I chromed with, “Can you hear it?” “What?”
“Bom bom owecka owecka”� It didn’t matter, paint, cans, aerosols, you
name it, we breathed it and that noise followed�

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My actual first mind altering experience was when I was a young kid.
Drinking cask wine from the fridge we used to fill up those Looney
tunes white plastic cups and say it was apple juice. My brother tells me
that I was on my dad’s lap one day asking why the TV was moving.
Around that time my first girlfriend brought me the Nirvana Never
Mind cassette. They were my favourite band until he killed himself. Then
it was Limp Bizkit, Korn, then the Real Slim Shady came along and I
identified strongly… How the fuck are you meant to grow up when you
aren’t raised? We took on the same “fuck you” attitude. I started smoking
cigarettes at the end of Grade 6 start of Year 7. I remember Mum caught
me out on the porch and I just said “fuck off leave me alone” and she did.

It was a natural progression. We hated our parent’s behaviour so much


we decided to take drugs instead. In year 7, besides chroming all the time,
I had my first drink. It was at some random Asian guy’s house, I passed
out, vomited, felt disgusting and went back the next day. These guys were
in a gang that went around doing graffiti tagging and scribbling shit. I’m
not proud to admit but I did it a couple times. Looking back I just think
what dickheads - people work hard for their houses and property, only
for some punk to come along and damage it and make it look like shit.

Here is a message from the majority of society to all the taggers out
there – Fuck you, may God strike you down! One day you’re going to be
sitting at a cafe drinking a latte looking at your $5,000 sports car (I was
going to say $50,000 but realistically you’d have a $5,000 sports car) that
you think is fully sick. Then an old lady is going to come past in her scooter
when you’re not looking and scratch it all up one side. That day the balance
will be returned in the world.

The graffiti gang, which was made up of a bunch of boys who couldn’t
fight their own battles, took over our house one day, thanks to someone
who invited them in. My brother came home and it was on… fighting
with wood fence palings. Eventually my brother put a stop to it when he
swung a hammer at the leader’s head and missed him by a bee’s dick! They
got the message after that and left us alone. About two years later some

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of them were the guys that were waiting for me and my mate at the train
station, they were playing tough.

I also started smoking dope around that time and, like I’ve talked about
already, I was fighting heaps at school. By Year 8 I was smoking dope
quite regularly. You may be wondering how I afforded it - well we got
pretty creative. I used to steal it off the toy boy a little bit at a time. He
was always threatening me about it. I rolled people for it. I dealt it, sold
it at school, sold raffle tickets and did general crime. During Year 8 we
started taking hard drugs like speed. The first time I had speed I put it
straight in my arm. I can remember the day we went in to the chemist to
get fresh syringes and the look of horror on the faces of ladies working
their when two 14 year old kids forced them to give them up.

When I got stoned or high I was a mess, I was paranoid and anxious, I
literally felt like a Freak on a Leash. I was always thinking that people
were talking about me, they didn’t like me, they were going to reject me,
I’m not cool. I couldn’t understand how they could just sit back and relax.

The only time I really enjoyed getting stoned was when I was by myself
rocking my head listening to Tool or Korn or Eminem. I was always
trying to get myself into complete oblivion, when you get hot/cold sweats,
the room starts spinning, you lose complete control of gravity, sink into
your bed and your body and head goes all wobbly and you pass /green
out and vomit. It took nothing to get to that place when I first started
out but later it would require a ridiculous amount of alcohol and good
smoking dope or one hit of heroin would be the short cut.

Heroin had me in its grip, in no time I felt the pull, it sucks the life straight
out of you. Whereas alcohol is ok and advertised on billboards and pot
is a magical herb that grows out of the ground. I hated life and would
punish myself, I didn’t care. We also did acid.

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That wasn’t an editing fault that was literally what happened. I was
walking down this street, then POW, went blank we didn’t think they
were working so we had a couple extras. I was worried about not being
able to remember that much on this chapter because I was high. I’m not
trying to negrave, more so explain. This isn’t a self help book it’s a help
self book.

If you can relate, that’s great and if not no big deal you don’t need to take drugs
to have problems. I’m still trying to escape my life reality.

Throughout my ‘childhood’ we moved houses like we were in a circus,


finally settling down for two years at a place in the eastern suburbs of
Melbourne. And with a bit of luck from the natural forces in the world
it just so happened we had a heroin dealer a handy three doors down.

What a nice bloke he was. He had all kinds of nice friends one of which
would sell us cheap stolen goods. You just had to tell him what you
wanted and the next day he delivered. I think he was the first person
to give me a taste of heroin, which once again I put straight in my arm
without hesitation. He also gave me a bit too much one day which put
me to sleep. I remember waking up to him slapping the fuck out of me.

Whilst writing this book he killed himself. Who thinks it’s ok to stick
a needle in the arm of a 14 year old. Someone who had a needle stuck
in their arm when they were 14. That’s what happens in addiction - the
don’t-give-a-fuck-attitude takes over and it takes hostages. Alcohol makes
you do the most aloof behaviours, when you start taking drugs and
drinking you’re in the devil’s playground.

Some of the things I experienced in black outs were hideous. I’ll give you
some examples. There was one and one time only: emphasis! I woke up
in a wet bed next to a fat chick and didn’t know if it was me or her. Lol.
Another time I passed out in my underpants and puked all over my bed
and my loving girlfriend invited my boss and half the people I worked
with into my room and I was a manager. I freaked it and threw my cd

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player at the wall. There was another time when I was about 24 and was
living in this lady’s house who was old enough to be my mum. We had a
bathroom in between our rooms and I walked through the bathroom and
nearly peed on her and then I tried to fornicate with her. I didn’t believe
her the next day but she had evidence.

I got in black out fights. One night these guys were hanging it on me in a
club, really humiliated me in front of these girls, so later that night (and
to be honest I don’t even know if it was the right guy) but I punched the
life out of him. And just as I kicked him in the head these headlights on
this car turned on and what do you know it’s my friend who owns one
of the biggest horse farms in the world who I’d been trying to get sweet
with so I could work for him. But talk about catching yourself out in a
black out it was like Boom, reality check.

Then there was the time I punched the owner of the Australian horse
farm’s golden boy in the nose because I caught him spending some love
you long time with my on/off sick relationship girlfriend lollipop.

I had rage I can remember coming out of that. It was like the matrix with
that circus music ‘da da danna nanna nut nut nerna’ and the music slows
right down. Everyone was walking around me but no one could see me
and was too scared to talk to me - it was traumatising.

Speaking of trauma: for now this will be the final sickest behaviour I
witnessed from someone else in a drunken, but socially acceptable black
out. I was up in Dubbo out on a farm at my mate’s 18th birthday. My
mate’s dad beat the absolute shit out of his mum and ripped a chunk of
hair out of his daughter’s head. It was so fucked up everyone just stood
there gobsmacked and no one did anything. It was lucky my mate didn’t
find out. It was his birthday and everyone kept it quite from him because
they knew he would have flipped. I think he found out the next day when
everyone had gone.

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I remember feeling pretty sick that night. I stopped communicating, just


got as drunk as I could and isolated myself. I did that quite a bit. It’s that
tickle at the back of your throat, the sweaty palms, anxiety the 10 seconds
before during and after ending a phone conversation. That didn’t sit right
anxiety. That’s a take off the anxiety advertisement.

I didn’t get much sleep that night. We were all camping out in the middle
of this large paddock where we had a big bonfire going. I was lying in
my swag trying to get some sleep then half way through the night a guy
across the paddock sleeping in his swag went vomp and took off down
the paddock. The guys had a long rope and were tying peoples’ swags to
their ute and dragging them around the paddock. This was the first road
trip I had been on and by Jesus we got hammered and had some fun. So
remember to drink in moderation.

There were more road trips to come. One time my friends and I went on
a road trip to go motor biking up in Romsey. We got that wasted having
a compression session in the car that we couldn’t find the place and fell
asleep. The next day we all woke up looking at each other like ‘What
happened?’ The second night I thought it would be a laugh to run a herd
of sheep threw the camp site. I had learnt how to herd sheep during
my first visit to country Victoria when I got sent out to Chris’s (who I
mentioned earlier), sister’s horse farm in Swan Hill for work placement.

Before Swan Hill he sent me to work for a horse trainer in Cranbourne. I


was treated like I was the scum of the earth. The lady said to me: “Don’t
come inside when we have guests over. If you need a shower or toilet just
wait till the next day”. At 14 years old, I was living in a caravan and felt
like an orphan.

Anyway after that experience the teacher was kind and sent me to his
sister’s farm and she treated me with much love and kindness. I loved
that farm life. After we worked the horses I would plough the race track.
I used this ancient tractor that I once nearly knocked the shed down with,

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Head Rocking

and then I’d go off to work on their friend’s property which was a 6,000
acre irrigation farm.

The first day I got there they sent me out on my own to herd up
approximately 5,000 sheep into one paddock they had just cropped.
You reckon I had some fun with that? I lost about 400 sheep on the
rice fields - whoops! I got a flat tyre. I accidently put some sheep in the
reserve water bank where they drain the rice fields. The Murray River
ran through the property and if you got on the wrong side of it you were
in the neighbour’s property which went for miles. I got lost, I lost sheep,
I saw wild pigs, snakes, turkeys, you name it. That was day one, but by
the end of my time there I was a gun at it.

I was driving this massive excavator (you needed a ladder to get in it)
along one day with the crazy guy and I heard this ‘boom’ sound of a shot
gun going off. I shit myself and asked him, “What the fuck was that?” He
said to me “Oh that’s ole’ Mick, he shoots the ducks.” Now I’m straight out
of Melbourne like a gullible blonde but still I thought, and said bullshit!
He was like “nah fair dinkum, slab of piss away he goes!” I said “he must
get sore ears.” Eventually I worked it out. It was an air compressor that
imitated the sound.

At the time I was there it was roasting hot and in the middle of summer
and after work the crazy guy would give me a beer because I was so
dehydrated. One can and I was wasted but I tell you what it went down
well. Beer, that disgusting taste! I remember trying it as a kid it tasted
like arse! It still strikes me as fucking weird that people persist with that
foul taste and end up liking it.

Unfortunately the crazy guy eventually turned on me. Because I was


riding the motor bike too fast past his house. I was always thinking
Chris’s sister would kick me off the farm because I was so scared of
abandonment and I always felt like a burden on people, everywhere I
stayed or went. I was always grateful and as polite as I possibly could be.
I went to Chris’s sister nearly crying, trying to explain myself and they just

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asked, “Was his hat turned a bit to the right?” I said “yep!” To my surprise,
they said “Nah, forget about it he gets like that when he’s drunk!”

I still cherish that experience. They were good kind people to me and I
was like the loyal dog that would work my guts out in return.

I just went completely off topic then; my drunken getting high stories bore me.

Wayz my horse died at the start of this chapter. Apparently she was bitten
by a snake or perhaps I was. It’s out of my control I’ll explain why that has
relevance and what she meant to me when I get up to it.

I have got a thing with number 3 or 333. I’m told that some people
in psychosis get fixated with numbers; I hope that’s not the case. I am
undecided if 3 is God’s will or is a curse. I’ll give you some examples. I’m
driving in the car, I pull up at the lights, look left there’s a sign with 333
on it, five minutes later a car with rego 333 goes past. Sitting on the couch
at home: hmm I wonder what the time is? What do you know, 3:33. In
a crowd at the city one person stands out: a guy wearing a t-shirt with
3 on it. I know most people will just say that it’s just coincidence but it
happens too often to be a coincidence. I had a friend that questioned me
so I started taking pictures and sending them to her. I’m in a coffee shop,
I sit down, it’s table 3. Turn on the TV, number 3. She tripped. I told my
last two partners about it, the last one reckons she started seeing 3 too. I
thought to myself: “You really don’t want that” because I have experienced
a lot of depression and bad luck seeing 3. But in saying that I try to choose
to make it as a sign from a higher power that there is a lesson to learn.

When Wayz died I questioned that. The rocket is built and now you
know why there is a 3 on it.

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Head Rocking

33
4

Chapter

Rocket Fuel

Rocket fuel is a gift and a curse mixed together� The gift is it will get
you to space; the curse is it can blow you up� I feel like writing this
entire chapter in capital letters just to emphasise A BIG FUCK YOU
TO ALL THE PEOPLE WHO LAUGHED AT MY ANXIETY,
PUT ME DOWN, DOUBTED ME, BULLIED ME, SHAMED ME,
SHUNNED ME, PASSIVELY AGRESSIVELY ATTATCKED ME
AND BASICALLY HURT ME�

But I won’t…

It’s made out of comments like this: “you have an interesting story, it’s not
a Hollywood Broadway but interesting”� The first person I showed this to
said, “It’s no Fifty Shades of Grey�” The second lady at the writers centre
said, “don’t get your hopes up�”

One day I walked past this house two doors up from where I live and it
smelt like road kill� The next day I saw a white van take away the little
old lady who had died of old age in there� No one had been checking on
her and I just thought that was so shitty� People spend their lives in wheel
chairs, blind or deaf people, families losing kids, kids losing families�

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Head Rocking

There are people without families, the homeless, or victims of abuse.


There are too many variations.

Everyone has their cross to bear and while some people are lumping
around a twig, others are lightly carrying a tree. It destroys some people
and it ignites others.

I could crap on about rocket fuel until the cows come home - that’s if I had
a cow or a home. This is the part where I’m meant to say just get on with
life and don’t let it get you down, use your pain to build a rocket. Right?
When people gave me that speech I always thought, “Shit why didn’t I
think of that?” Then all of my problems would disappear for about five
minutes a day… or until the next stupid thought comes along….

I’ve got the mad cow disease. My cow isn’t coming or going. My cow doesn’t
leave the yard - you can poke it, prod it, and it’s just like Fuck that I’m staying
here Moo!

My cow tells me shit like “Jesus Christ! Russell even the pizza shop guys don’t
like you ‘you make everyone so awkward.” I get the sense that the pizza guys
see me coming and start muttering to each other, “Here he comes, Mr. No
fucking Sunshine!” I’d like to walk into the pizza shop have eye contact, jokes,
laughs and feel friendly and comfortable. Just like anyone else, I’d say “hi guys
how’s your week been?” “Been watching the footy?” Maybe I am a mad cow…
but I’d rather be a cow than a sheep.

I don’t like being so sensitive. I don’t like making out that my thoughts
are so sick or dwelling on my problems of writing a book about my
Oh-so-unfortunate-life.

And my depression: it snaps me. It’s a doubled edged sword – with one
side I continually stab people and the other side I impale myself on. I
know there are people that have harder lives. I read a book about one guy
who did it heaps harder than me. I then met that guy in real life and he

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didn’t match up to what his book was about. Which is ok. It’s the area of
grey between sunshine and thunderstorms.

I believe the only way forward for me is to walk the line of truth and not
some bible bashing truth or imaginary truth just simply, my own truth
the breathe ha-ha. I need to feel it. I don’t believe it’s something that
I can understand with my intellect. That’s how I connect and identify
with people. It needs to feel right on my conscience or I am gambling on
chance and could fall back into hell and lose that sense of a higher power.
Sometimes walking the line feels like hell but I know that in the end it
will pay off. I don’t actually know that, I just have faith that it will. Some
people choose to ignore that they always look real good at the time but
those grey clouds can turn into the mightiest of thunderstorms.

When I moved back to Melbourne from country Victoria the wannabe


cowboy was right and the sunny days had gone. Within a week the
Tambourine man had played a song to me, and I was back in the astronaut
suit. Living back in Melbourne with my mum and it was hell. Mum was
losing her shit all the time. She kept finding the bong and smashing it
outside. This was just a mere inconvenience for us. We would just go
out and take the metal stem and cone and stick it in a plastic bottle and
“wallah!” We were pretty creative when it came to making bongs; a bit
of garden hose, plastic coke bottle, can scissors and “wallah”, new bong.

Mum couldn’t handle all of her kids mixed up on drugs... it was affecting
her so when the toy boy got a big promotion to go play football in
Tasmania (because he didn’t make the cut in AFL) it was only natural for
Mum to pack up shop and head over to Tassie with him. Leaving us and
a fully responsible heroin addict (The red head) to look after the house.

This brings me to the start of Year 10. I missed half of Year 9 whilst
working up in the country but they let me go straight into Year 10. I
reckon they thought there’s no way they wanted me for an extra year. So
I got back to school and saw my first love with the mange pigeon. I was

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Head Rocking

gutted and in a world of hurt. I went to school pinned, speeding, stoned


high 24/7!

Things at home were off the chain. Out of control! Every second Thursday
I would come home from school and there would be five strangers on the
nod in my living room. It’s dole day. They were driving me crazy - they
would eat my food, steal my shit go in my room. The redhead was one
of the worst heroin addicts on consumption I met. She used to go on the
nod and fall asleep in the sink whilst washing the dishes. This would drive
me crazy when I was trying to dry the dishes. She also gave me and my
sister the responsibility of looking after her daughter while she went to
the city a few times a day to get drugs. Heroin grabbed a hold of me pretty
quick. I could feel myself falling and couldn’t live in that house anymore
so after another losing my shit episode I rang my mum and moved over
to Tasmania.

It was a matter of seconds and my life could have changed forever. No


shit. This is what happened. I got the heroin dealer to take me to the port
where the Spirit of Tasmania departs from Melbourne. Of course since
it’s in the city we just had to get on quick before and since I’m leaving just
one last taste to see me off. We fell asleep, or at least turned into zombies
for about two hours, then all of a sudden the dealer (or reaper) wakes up
and says, “What time are you supposed to be at the dock?” I said “3pm”. It
was 2:50pm and I freaked it, so he drove like an absolute maniac (which
was pretty much his normal style of driving) to get me there before the
ship departed. I checked in, legged it up the ramp, and no shit, I stepped
onto the boat and ten seconds later it’s breaking away. Just a few seconds
more and it would have been too big a step and I would have missed the
boat – literally and metaphorically!

Once I was on board I found my room (or should I say, bunk) at the
bottom of the ship. It happened to be right at the time the Titanic movie
came out so I felt like a poor, financially inferior, but morally better
person, who drowned because of the ignorant rich person that wanted
extra room for their fat arses. I get to Tasmania. I moved in with mum

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and the toy boy into a one bedroom apartment where the lounge room
became my bedroom. We were living in this little backwards town, down
by the Derwent River. I detox off my little habit; my insides crawl for
awhile. The relationship between my mum and the toy boy was distant
but ok because Mum says it’s now ok for me to drink but it’s not ok to
take any drugs.

There was a store in our town called Chicken Feed and it had a catchy
theme song. Tasmania was a trip, it was like stepping into the olden days;
it felt like living ten years behind time. The thing that I liked the most
was that they let you out of the school on your breaks and I lived across
the road from the school. On my first day of school I was immediately
drawn to the most dysfunctional messed up teens in the school because
I lit up a cigarette in the court yard and walked around with it like I had
done in Melbourne. They all tripped but that is how I met my main
friend the psycho. He later turned on me. I don’t know why but it could
of had something to do with him being schizophrenic or that his dad was
a member of a bikie gang or even possibly that he had the same last name
as the mass murderer who a few years earlier had walked into a restaurant
in Hobart and killed heaps of innocent people. Not sure.

When you hear that saying ‘It’s a small world after all’ - in Tasmania
they aren’t joking. They call Melbourne the mainland. I never got that.
It seemed a little bit degrading to me. I am not sure why, I did this. I was
trying to get fit and became the water boy for the toy boy’s footy team.
They called me Sweeper and I hated it. But for my efforts they rewarded
me by letting me drink beer. It felt like I was the toy boy’s bitch. It
destroyed my self-esteem.

I went on footy trips, got shit hung on me constantly, laughing at me when


they watched the replay - it was fucked!

So before long I’m back smoking dope and listening to the Children of
the korn my schizophrenic friend and I used to make bongs at school.
We were quite ingenious. We would make the cone in metal works and

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Head Rocking

attach it to the pipe of a Bunsen burner, get a deal at recess from his ole’
man or mum or dealer, and smoke at lunch time. Then we’d report to
the Principal (that was part of our required daily ritual) before we went
to afternoon class. We would go into his office and walk out with him
apologising to us.

There were some nice girls at that school that were kind to me. A hot
blonde that I fancied (or wanted). Some of the teachers where cool too. I
didn’t get on with a certain Canadian teacher. He used to drive me mad
when he would softly say “Quiet please.” Everyone would ignore him and
he would say it again bit louder “Quiet please.” Then out of nowhere he
would yell at the top of his voice “QUIET!” and bang a ruler on the table.
Everyone would shit themselves. There was this one day I shit myself
and said “Fuck me! Is that really necessary?” He tried to send me to the
Principal’s office and I said “no.” I could swear this guy was like an over
excited dog rolling itself on the ground. He ended up sending a fellow
student to get the Principal and started saying, “Oh you’re in big trouble
now! Wait until the Principal gets here!” I said, “I don’t think I’ll wait, I
might just go home a little early today.” “See ya, crazy yelling son-of-a-
bitch!” and I walked out of the class and went home. Of course by that
stage my class mates were all in stitches. That teacher had some R and
R. after that. I was a class clown with no respect for authority. Me the
psycho and I guy called Mitch the bitch got up to mischief quite a bit.
One day we cracked the head gasket in my mum’s car hitting 200 kph in
it during school hours.

I moved houses about six times while I was there. I think I became an
independent at Centrelink; that was a milestone.

One night I was out with the toy boy drinking and he decided to get
funky in the back of a car with this chick right in front of me! When we
get home I asked him “what the fuck he was doing!” My Mum was in the
other room listening, so she came out and lost her shit. Then he started
choking her, so I bashed him off her. Then he jumped on me, landing on
my knee and started choking me. I might add I’m nearly 16 and skinny

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Rusty Sea

and he’s a ripped AFL football player. Now it’s Mum’s turn and she beat
him off me with a fire poker. I got up and went to the kitchen to get a
knife. I hated him to my core. I went at him with the knife and he knocked
me out. That night I experienced trauma and I lay awake all night.

The next day I went to school I can specifically remember the facial
expressions of one of the teachers who saw me hobbling down the
corridor with a swollen head. Her jaw dropped in horror when I told her
what had happened and that I couldn’t do the work placement on the
farm that I had organised. Then I walked away and broke down. The
toy boy high tailed back to Melbourne. Mum said “What I am I going to
do, what am I going to do?” Two days later Mum followed the toy boy to
Melbourne and left me in Tasmania.

Hang on I just want to ‘Sing for the moment’. The school system bred fear
into you that if you didn’t complete Year 12 you were going to fail at life.
I knew there was no chance I would make Year 12 but I thought I would
at least try to complete Year 10. In order to finish school I moved into a
one bedroom with the schizophrenic and Mitch the bitch. He had a rare
mental health disorder called spoilt-little-wanker that tried really hard
to play bad. When you grow up in dysfunction, there is nothing worse
than seeing someone who plays hard done by, as if it’s cool to live in that.

We smoked dope, partied, drank, blacked out, and got up to all kinds of
shit. One guy smashed every window in the primary school one night.
We’d hang shit on the local bum who passed out drinking Metho in the
main street every night. We got run over by cars. We got in fights. I got
beat up one night because I was too drunk to fight back. It wasn’t long
after that when Mitch the bitch turned the schizophrenic against me.
He wanted to fight me but I wimped out. I dunno why. I was capable,
but I was crippled with fear and shame. It was an ego battle to see who
was more fucked up. I think I came a close second. So the schizophrenic
eventually turned on me and kicked me out.

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Head Rocking

So at about the time of my 16th birthday I had nowhere to go. I didn’t


know who to call. I sat down on a bench with all my clothes in suitcases,
completely lost and disoriented and alone. No word of a lie, I had just
enough money to make one phone call - I had to call Mum. I didn’t want
to but didn’t have a choice.

A kind lady in the town got me somewhere to stay for a few nights before
I went back to Melbourne. I cried through those nights. But it may have
turned out to be a very lucky move because I found out two weeks after I
left that the schizophrenic cut both his wrists open at the local pools and
was threatening to kill people with a knife. It took six cops and pepper
spray and taser to take him down before he ended up in a psyche ward.
So perhaps there is more than one type of Tasmanian devil!

Going back to Melbourne was hard. I couldn’t handle living with the toy
boy. I was full of fear and hatred. So I think I just got wasted round the
clock. It saved me having to think. I didn’t have or keep any friends. I
moved around too much and didn’t see the point plus I didn’t know how
too. I spoke with my dad at this time. He made threats that we should
beat up the toy boy but nothing came of it.

I was in another strange house in another town asking myself what the
fuck am I going to do with my life? I just sat around all day pinching the
toy boy’s dope, getting stoned, head rocking to music, playing the play
station and watching TV. At night I couldn’t sleep because my bed was
rocking I was losing my shit, banging on the wall and screaming; “Shut the
fuck up!” Lying awake with my heart pounding in a highly stressed state.

The whole time I was going crazy they just kept saying it’s only in your
head. She said “it’s only in my head”, so when people say that to me now
I say; “of course it’s in my head that’s where my brain is!” After a while I
started to think some of it might have been in my head, but later on in life
there was some evidence to suggest it wasn’t. That really twisted me and
reiterated that I was right in suspecting the worst from people. Anyway,
eventually they couldn’t take me anymore and they kicked me out.

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So I walked out the front door. Another reality check! And once again
I’m alone. I can’t live with my mum. I can’t live with my dad. I felt an
overwhelming sense of abandonment. I felt like an orphan. I didn’t want
to be a burden on anyone. Everywhere I went I felt like a burden. I had
nowhere to turn so I turned to my grandparents. I walked into their living
room like I’d just been shot and broke down. They were really concerned
and worried about me. Grandma kept saying “What’s wrong? What’s
wrong?” I just said I can’t do it anymore. My brother had been living with
my grandparents for a little while too, because he had nowhere to go.
They asked me why I didn’t come sooner. I didn’t think they would have
me. When you have no love for yourself it’s hard to believe that others
will love you.

After a while of living with my grandparents there came a time where they
were going back overseas to live so I needed to find something to do and
somewhere to stay. I was thinking of jobs that provide accommodation
and the Army came to mind. Fuck it, why not?

I had to get fitter and stronger though, so I start training. I trained myself
everyday to run laps around this lake. The Army expected you to be so fit
and I trained to be way above it. I was applying to be a combat engineer.
I don’t know why I wasn’t really that sure about what a combat engineer
actually did. In hindsight I think I would of liked being a sniper better -
that matched my mentality and how I dealt with people… sit up on a hill
and hit them when they least expect it.

As well as my fitness training, I read up and studied up on what I thought


I was meant to know. I got in there did the test and thought I did well.
Then it was time for the psyche assessment. I got the results and army
officer told me that “you have failed and you won’t be getting into the
army, how do you feel about that?” “How do I feel? Not good!” I replied.
“Why?” she asks. “Well in two weeks I’m not going to have a house to live
in or anywhere where to stay and I just beat the shit out of myself running
around a lake for the last three months for no fucking reason.” “So, yeah,
not good and fuck you!” I walked out and burst.

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Head Rocking

In hindsight it may have just been a test to see how I would react. I gave
them a clear picture. I reckon I would have been a good soldier because I
push myself hard and at that time I didn’t value my life. So I was back to
square one and ‘What am I going to do with my life?’

I decided to call Chris the teacher from the horse course. He answers
the phone like this: “What? Who? What do you want?” “I need a job”, I
replied. He responded “good onya, I’m busy,” and hung up. More rejection!
More abandonment! Fuck! Things are gloomy. Then three days later the
teacher calls back and asks “Got pen?” “Yep” I replied. Then he said “042
bla bla”. “Call him.” “He’ll give you a job” and hangs up. So I called. It was
the teacher’s mate a Caulfield horse trainer. So about a week before I’m
going to be homeless I found somewhere to live and work.

So that’s my rocket fuel it’s been hard writing through that shit; brought
up a lot of emotion so I imagine it might be hard to read. Hang in there.

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