My haven at the moment, it’s in the middle of The Hub at Victoria Uni. More than a study zone, this is a locale for “social study”; a place which regardless of the books in front of us is inviting of guests. Alone, we dither away time between lectures people-watching. We indulge in teriyaki chicken sushi, the $8 berrylicious smoothie we can’t really afford. It’s okay, or so we tell ourselves, because the goji aids in curation of aesthetic study, and with all that vitamin C, in rejuvenation; lunch was curry again.
For all it’s hilarity, I love the student lifestyle. Half the time we complain about our vulgar status; the rest we spend mocking our ability to set any so-called student boundary. It’s always in some vegan restaurant where we’re chowing down on a “healthy” $12 slice of cheesecake (captured in all twelve angles on our camera roll) or while sipping on a glass of Champagne at Duke Carvell’s, that we realise such a lifestyle fails to fit our given label. A label which for authenticity’s sake, we feel inclined to live up (or more appropriately down) to.
It would make sense, then, that I’m drinking a berry smoothie in The Hub (call me pretentious, I know you fuckin’ do it), and listening to Loud Places by Jamie XX. My face has recently dropped due to heavy concentration, and in hindsight, it probably appears as if Jeff Buckley has hit the eeriest part of Hallelujah. I’m writing, but I’m getting nowhere because every time I pause to think, I get distracted by the people around me. And this Jamie track – it’s one of my favourites at the moment – it’s mirroring it all, insisting people like me into an era of deep reflection. I’m thinking of the way we live and the way we socialise – or don’t. I’m both viewing things from the outside yet somehow so heavily involved in it all.
As I listen to this song, I’m imagining circles of people and they’re dancing. It’s not even cheesy; this entity is not about happiness and rainbows. Loud Places represents a world where “weirdos” don’t exist. It’s something about the atmosphere. And it means we accept the way of another as merely different to our own way. It’s not bad, it’s not even good, it’s just by nature alternate.
I’m not saying I’m about to hold hands with strangers at uni in hopes of initiating some flash mob situation. But in a notably odd way, I am saying it’s already happening. We’re fooling around blindly to this beat, intrigued by what people are doing, by their passions, and the way they fill their days. We dance in sync; we’re all here attempting to do something we love. Better yet, we’re waking up at 8am to excel at it!
Me, I am so passionate about what I do. I live to interact; to share all the opinions and stories and wide-mouthed laughs that lie behind this voice. I search to meet crazy, cool people who will shut me up, just so I can fascinate in who they are, and the mesmerising things they’ve done. I search stores for oversized and unflattering clothing, but also for lovely things. My personality is constantly changing, as is my mind. It’s running, all of it – my life! And I’m loving it.
This loud place.
The acceptance of individuals within it. For once, we do not judge others for having passions or taking paths which divert from our own. Criticism for the kid studying bio-med, it’s become alien. I stand here, decked out in Dead Man Vintage*, and I damn respect that kid. If they enjoy what characterises their everyday, it’s both motivating and inspiring to me personally – regardless of my interest in the subject.
*This one’s worth expanding on. Dead Man Vintage is a collection of one-off items which have been hand-picked by the owners during their regular trips to Los Angeles. For all it’s diversity, this American vintage definitely deserves a sift-through. I live and breathe the attitude of these disco pants; I literally gushed at their discovery. The Antilles tee has been my go-to on all lazy ‘n’ hazy summer days. If you’re keen on something I’m wearing, look below for what’s still available.
My absolute favourite part of uni – but more, of this supposedly “transitional” period – is being the active controller of my future, of seeking the idealisations of my classroom self. But too, and this is something I didn’t anticipate as much, I am ecstatic to be surrounded by those desiring success in the thing they love.
2016 and we have realised satisfaction to be a thing embedded in our own interests. We have acknowledged a truth which has always existed: that it’s cool, bloody hell, it’s AWESOME to care about something, to be interested in something, and to FUCKING OWN what you do.
Is there a purpose behind this post other than to cheer you all on? Not really. In this very moment, I’m on the sideline. I’m beaming because I don’t have a half-hearted smile, but also because I’m proud of us. Not for going to uni – like any, it’s a road to success if you make it one. I’m proud of us for working our way around this noisy world and for giving ourselves (even if temporarily) to a niche within it. So we’ve recognised we like media, that we’re a bit loud and opinionated. Today, we’re endeavouring to make something out of such truths. I am proud of us, for despite detesting the sciences, taking an interest in the journey of a budding marine biologist anyway.
I am so glad we found it- passion. Perhaps even more so, a place to share it. I think we should keep doing so. Be it one to both of us or otherwise, I want to hear about it; drive and determination is infectious. And if you haven’t discovered your thing yet, don’t worry. This, this loud place is exactly where we’re meant to find it.
Shot by Robbie Hunter, with thanks to Britanny.