Brodie Lancaster is a writer, editor and mediocre DJ from Melbourne, Australia. She has a zine about women in cinema called Filmme Fatales, is a contributor to Rookie, and talks about One Direction and Kanye West on Twitter.
7:30-ish AM, my bed: I wake up to no alarm for the first morning in months. I am thinking about Jason Mantzoukas, as I’ve done literally every day since Lola told me to listen to his episode of Crybabies, my new favourite podcast. I start my rounds of still-in-bed phone play, starting with Snapchat (everyone looks cute) and Instagram (everyone looks cute and they liked the photo I posted at Minna’s book launch last night) before getting to the juice of Twitter and Facebook.
7:50 AM, still in bed: D’Arcy texts me apologising for not replying to my texts because she “was in Mexico (with the turtle emojis)”. She’s been posting videos that I’ve thirstily liked on all platforms of baby turtles hatching on a beach in Tulum and flapping out to the ocean. It is truly THE BEST #CONTENT.
I guess D’arce is my pen-pal because we’ve never met and our friendship only exists in words, except we have never used pens to write them. (“Finger pals” is more accurate I really hope that term catches on!) She lives in LA and fate brought some articles I wrote about One Direction in front of her eye holes last year and we’ve talked pretty much every day since then. I say it’s fate because, four years ago when I lived in New York, I was total heart-eyes-emoji over her after seeing her perform at UCB a couple of times. We text back and forth about 1D news and turtles and a book prize I was just long-listed for and the photo of Zayn Malik on the cover of ‘Interview’ magazine and the legendary 1D fan who asked all the boys to hold hands for her meet and greet photo.
I start to get kinda sad at the idea of One Direction coming to an end really soon. I’d say 10% of my love for them is the band’s songs and members, while the other 90% is love for all it’s given me—like D’Arcy and nice feelings and sad feelings and learning to not be a judgmental dickhole about popular music. I go to tweet “i’ve had ‘interview ones direction’ on my life goals to-do list for four years and now it feels more urgent than ever i need this”. I stare at it for, like, a minute, feel overwhelmed with the truth of the sentiment and save it to my drafts.
8:34 AM, still my bed: I remember to be keeping notes for this and pull my laptop out. Hi! I see an email from Rookie that makes me feel all kinda bittersweet feelings, and click around the internet for a sec before I remember I have a dentist appointment at 10 AM and better move my caboose. I left a barely-even-sipped-from bottle of Coke Zero next to my bed last night and I really want to drink it right now but my dentist Dr Ted Moon would just know, and I am not wired to handle someone’s disdain.
I sit on the toilet and stare at the poster Sinead gave me for my birthday on the facing wall. It says “IT CAN BE YOURS: MONEY” and it’s a good reminder to get out there and GTM every day.
I’ve been living alone for five weeks now and it’s like I’m finally in a physical space that reflects my brain space; solitary unless otherwise requested. Just removing the act of negotiating stuff like timing my bathroom visits around someone else’s has calmed me down so much.
After I shower quickly, I brush my teeth extra good like everyone does right before going to the dentist. I cannot handle trying to put together a cute outfit so I go for new black jeans, a super baggy black tee and a denim jackets. I skip over my two pairs of fun Birkenstocks from different Opening Ceremony collabs and settle on a plain black pair. I have to get my photo taken later but for now I just don’t want to be looked at.
9:13 AM, the 86 tram: I’m listening to ‘I Hope I Don’t Come Across Intense,’ a great tape of demos Wil Wagner released a couple of months ago. All the recordings are from his phone or whatever he had handy, and all the songs dig real deep into my guts and make me think about stuff I’d rather ignore thank you very much.
I went to the launch of the tape with Sarah when it came out, and spent the whole night on edge because someone was there who I’d confessed my heart feelings to earlier that week. It was the first time I’d done that since I was a teenager, and the first time I’d done it to someone I’d see again afterwards. I couldn’t shake the nerves and anxiety until Wil sang the line, “The last time I said ‘I love you’ nothing exploded and no-one disappeared,” and it took me out of myself for a moment. (Just a mome tho.)
I’m catching up on all the articles I save to my Readability list and then never actually read. I read Ask Polly’s ‘Ask Polly: How Do I Help My Selfish, Depressed Friend?’ and the final lines, where Polly asks “The Best Worst Friend” why she lets her friend treat her so poorly and so often are a revelation. I am overwhelmed with the way she writes, “There’s joy in knowing the forces that act on you. It gives you a better picture of your emotional landscape. You should know what’s going on, because these forces don’t change all that quickly. And these things aren’t all bad, in spite of our culture’s obsession with flushing out all toxic echoes of the past.” Sometimes I think I am so hellbent on rationalising every feeling as I feel it—as if knowing why I feel something takes away its potential to affect me negatively—that I don’t let myself feel wholly or properly.
I listen to Wil singing, “I watch my undying youth be extinguished by my own flame” as I read Emily Nussbaum’s piece on ‘UNReal,’ a TV show I obsessively consumed two weeks ago. I wish I could write about pop culture with the poetry and attitude Emily can.
I read ‘Living in a Post-Delete World,’ Ann Friedman’s piece on the naive idea that we can control our internet lives, as I listen to Wil sing, “I need to know how to say I care more than these words I’ve used up, these words I already know,” and, “Are we hanging out? Or will you marry me? Am I too unstable for going steady?”
I scroll through Readability to find the next story to read as my tram rolls around the Spring Street corner onto Bourke Street. I land on ‘Rape Joke’ by Patricia Lockwood, something a friend recommended in a group chat a while ago. Everyone was talking about it but I’d never even heard of it, so I just nodded along. (‘Nodding along’ in IM means typing ‘Cool!’ then googling what’s being discussed.)
Wil is singing “I know I should wash you off, but I can’t” in as I read Patricia’s words:
“The rape joke is that you were facedown. The rape joke is you were wearing a pretty green necklace that your sister had made for you. Later you cut that necklace up. The mattress felt a specific way, and your mouth felt a specific way open against it, as if you were speaking, but you know you were not. As if your mouth were open ten years into the future, reciting a poem called Rape Joke.”
I am stunned and totally overwhelmed and on the verge of tears and feel so much emotional energy I cannot bear to let simmer while I lay back in Dr Ted Moon’s chair.
9:37 AM, Swanston Street: I jump off the tram too early and call the dentist clinic and tell them a pipe has burst in my apartment and I can’t make it to my check-up. (It’s not entirely untrue, if you consider “my face” and “my apartment” to be interchangeable.)
I take a winding route to a new cafe where I’d planned to meet Sarah for post-dentist breakfast at 11:00 AM. On the way I call her and tell her I’ll be a little early but to take her time.
9:50 AM, Rustica Canteen: I walk in and see my friend Ashe and her husband Sam. They’re both meeting friends (separately) after this, and tell me that both friends are early-arrivers who tend to text and let them know they’re early, without the considerate, “but take your time!” suffix. (See: above. As a compulsively early person, I have learned that not everyone controls their anxiety by anticipating every possible disruption and planning to arrive at least 15 minutes ahead of an agreed-upon time, and as such I am not allowed to ever pressure anyone to also arrive super early.) Sam said one of his friends texts him photos of the drinks he’s ordered for Sam before he arrives somewhere. These people are giving punctuality a bad name and I won’t stand for it.
I drink a flat white. Ashe tells me, offhandedly, that she’s pregnant and starting a website called “Sad and Pregnant” because she can’t find anything in the grey space between “OVERJOYED AT THE IDEA OF BRINGING NEW LIFE INTO THE WORLD” and “in need of antidepressants that would make Tom Cruise mad”. I recommend she watch Kim Kardashian’s Ellen interview where she sat there a drily talked about how women who talk about the joy of pregnancy are lying. A real Kim Klassic.
They leave and I read Reggie Ugwu’s profile on Rebecca Black. Reading the intensely detailed description of the virality of ‘Friday’ and the way the internet destroyed this teenager’s reputation (on a viral machine like Buzzfeed, no less) prompts me to note in my journal: the internet is eating itself.
10:20 AM, Rustica Canteen: Sarah arrives so I put my phone away and we have breakfast. I order a second (then a third) flat white, plus a baguette with egg, bacon, relish and avocado. Then a chocolate and peanut butter croissant.
11:40 AM, Alpha 60: Sarah is going to Hawaii for her best friend’s wedding later this month and wants to look for a dress. I want to use a voucher for Alpha 60 to invest in another navy sack dress I’ve worn on 7 of the 9 days since I bought it.
My body has never been made for boutiques and I always felt so much anxiety about shopping in them, because I’ve learned that nothing but the accessories department has anything to fit me. Last week, after Minna held an event at Alpha 60, I flicked through a rack of sale items and, at my friend Emily’s encouragement, bought a dress that makes me feel so good about myself that I now hate wearing anything else. Since then, I’ve been thinking really seriously about adopting a uniform, à la Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg. The more I’ve researched and asked people about this, the more I realise that, aside from Matilda Kahl, a woman who wrote about a literal uniform she implemented a few years ago, it’s mostly these men who are widely considered to be geniusii that get away with wearing the same thing every day. I am trying to simplify the areas of my life I can exercise a little control over, and dressing in a way that saves me time and body image-related nerves is one of them, so a basic uniform feels like a step in a really comfortable direction.
I relish in the fact that these oversized, belted sacks from a v cool local label look nice on me, are cool for work or nighttime activities, and are in my price range. I buy two: one exactly the same as the one I bought last week, and a new design that’s black with white trim.
Sarah and I ride the tram home together, and she gets off at her stop halfway to my house. I put my headphones on and listen to Tavi and Hilton Als talking on the new episode of Crybabies.
12:22 PM, Northcote: I jump off the tram and walk down the street. Someone has drawn in the concrete of the footpath, treating each square of cement like a panel. There’s a crude, life-sized outline of a woman reclining, there’s a bunch of teapots and cups, there’s some fish and the words “I LOVE TO EAT FISH”. I glance up and see an old man standing outside a house up ahead. He’s coughing into a tissue and about 10 pigeons are gathered at his feet. I don’t want to deal with walking around/through them/him, so I cross to the other side of the street and keep my head down. On that side, someone’s written in the concrete “BE KIND TO EACH OTHER”. I look over and the man waves at me, I wave back.
12:28 PM, my apartment: I get home as Tavi, Hilton, Susan and Sarah are talking about the vulnerability required to ask someone to tell you how they feel about you. I keep my headphones on after I walk inside and go to the toilet with them on, which feels really strange, but I don’t want to stop listening.
I open my laptop and pull up the podcast to keep listening as I clean my room. I do not trust/understand “”“the Cloud””” but I do like that my computer knows where I was up to when I was listening on my phone.
1:40 PM, my couch: Greta arrives to take some headshots for me, something we originally talked about doing about a year ago, but she was extra keen to do now after seeing how dope the bookshelves in my new apartment are. We move furniture around so I can sit facing the window, my books and magazines behind me.
Joe texts Andy and I to tell us the website for IPF—the Independent Photography Festival, which Joe started and we’re all working on—has finally gone live. I’ve been dealing with the stress leading up to this moment for a month now, so this text is a huge weight off my shoulders. The group text turns real cute real fast as Andy sends us a video of him smiling and waving. Joe, who’s just arrived in New York after 6 weeks in London, sends the same. I send them a photo of my rosy face and, after looking at it, decide to go and do my hair and make-up while Greta eats a pie.
1:50 PM, my living room and courtyard: We spend about an hour taking photos as I play 10 Years A New Slave, an hour-long Kanye tribute that SmithAgentSmith released on the 10 year anniversary of the release of The College Dropout.
Greta and I met six years ago when she started dating the drummer of a band I used to hang out with. I’ve lost track of a lot of people I knew from that scene in the time since, but Greta and I always talk about how glad we are that we stuck tight together.
3:22 PM, my couch: we talk non-stop about the difference between saying yes to things you’re asked to do (something I’ve realised, this week, I’ve done too much of over the past couple of years) and deciding what it is you want to do (something I’m determined to start doing). We talk about the pressure of focusing all your creative energy on just one thing and pursuing it to the sacrifice of all else. I make a packet of mi goreng for a snack as we talk about internet comments, how great Sinead is, and a painting project Greta is starting. She plays me a track from our friend Giuls’s new EP.
4:00pm, my apartment: Greta leaves and, not long after, Sinead comes over. We’re doing a special print edition of The Gaz (short for The Gazette, the fortnightly newsletter we put out at The Good Copy, where she and I work) and we’re going to watch the original ‘Star Wars’ trilogy together and then Sinead will interview me about it. (I’ve never seen any of it before.) She already did the pre-screening interview, which included the following:
Sinead: But do you know what Star Wars is about?
Brodie: No, I literally have no idea. I know that…Harrison Ford is friends with R2D2 and C3P0 and um, what’s his name?
Sinead: I don’t know what you’re trying to say.
Brodie: The wookie, they’re friends! And then there’s a Death Star and there’s a cantina where they hang out and play the song.
Sinead: I’m sorry I’m laughing.
Brodie: And then… I literally have no idea what the plot is. I know that Princess Leia becomes a slave at some point and has like a hot version of her regular outfit. And her and Luke Skywalker…do they fuck, and then realise they’re brother and sister? That’s what I think happens.
My notes from A New Hope:
4:30 PM: WE ARE WATCHING STAR WARS
5:20 PM: just learned what the force is lol. I hear the line, “These are not the droids you’re looking for,” and gasp in recognition. So much of this movie is so familiar to me despite having never watched a frame of it. I wonder what it was like to see this movie BEFORE knowing it would become so iconic.
5:26 PM: vape pens in the cantina. Ain’t nobody fucking with Obi Wan’s clique
6:07 PM: I hope Han Solo and Leia get it in
6:10 PM: Storm Troopers’ guns are so ineffective
6:12 PM: Oh shit Obi Wan and Darth Vader are gonna fight I hope Obi don’t die
6:26 PM: Luke: “I GOT A LITTLE COOKED BUT I’M OK” lol
6:27 PM: Obi Wan’s voice saying, “Luke, trust your feelings” is a lesson for life
6:38 PM: omg everyone looks so nice at this medal ceremony but this imagery is v third reich-y
6:51 PM, my couch: We decide to order food and realise our favourite pizza place doesn’t deliver to my suburb, but will deliver to one literally two streets away. We trick the system in the food-ordering app and manage to order two pizzas, a bottle of wine and two ice cream sandwiches as we press play on Empire Strikes Back.
My notes from The Empire Strikes Back:
6:59 PM: Hoth is like The Wall from ‘Game of Thrones’. Was the phrase “ice princess” invented for Leia in Hoth?
7:10 PM: I JUST LEARNED WHAT YODA IS. He taught Obi Wan to be a Jedi knight. Cool.
7:30 PM: no one in Star Wars wants to be vulnerable and say how they feel they’re all just sassing each other all the GD time. I feel like Han Solo needed to listen to Hilton’s parts of the new episode of Crybabies.
7:49 PM, my front door: The pizza arrives and we’re eating it as Leia and Han kiss for the first time. Sinead and I cheers with our mugs of wine, “TO THE FORCE!”
8:56 PM: my only note was from the very beginning of Return of the Jedi: “omg so tense so good”
9:00 PM: I text Pork Chop, who has loved Star Wars since he was born, “Hey this Star Wars thing is pretty cool really hope our piece in The Gaz makes more people aware of it.”
11:05 PM, my couch: It’s all over. There were too many Ewoks in that last one, we got tired and Sinead skipped a little. (Don’t tell Pork Chop.) We do a post-movie interview but I’m a little drunk off wine and Harrison Ford’s smirk so don’t know if I said anything clever.
11:15 PM, my couch: I read the post on Beyonce’s website where her family members recount their song memories of her, and read the cutest parts to Sinead as she books a cab to take her home. Her cab arrives super fast so we say goodbye. I survey the pile of snack remnants in the living room and decide to clean up in the morning. I quickly take my make-up off with wipes and get into bed. I reply to the texts I got during the movie: my sister asking me if she can crash at my house in a few months; Minna thanking me for helping her de-stress during her book launch last night; Greta sending me funny screenshots of people we know on Tinder; Boe co-ordinating his visit to Melbourne next week.
11:30 PM, my bed, again: I play a quick game of Candy Crush, which I’ve recently reverted to after a few months playing Kim Kardashian: Hollywood. I couldn’t deal with Kim after a while because, if you don’t play it for a few days or weeks, when you log-in your star has fallen and you have to swipe through hundreds of notifications from fake tabloids telling you you’re irrelevant now, then work to make back that ground you’ve lost. Mindless clicking shouldn’t make me feel that insecure, so I’m back aboard the Candy train.
I realise I’ve seen more friends and done less work today than on any day in recent memory, which kind of makes this an out of the ordinary account of my Saturday. It makes me appear deceptively extroverted and interesting. If you had told me yesterday that I would spend the start of my weekending not doing any work or writing any emails, having a leisurely brunch, shopping, getting photographed, and watching three movies with zero stress or anxiety I think I’d respond like that kid who says “I don know” then giggles until he sobs.
12:00 AM, my bed: I am googling my own name at the stroke of midnight.