I went to Newcastle to attend TINA (This Is Not Art Festival) last year.
Unfortunately I could only make one day of the Festival and had to catch the last train back from Newcastle on the Saturday night. This was perfectly timed for me to encounter all the bogans from the Central Coast on their drunken way home. Wonderful.
Being the quiet artistic type that I am, I was scratching away in my journal, and several passing bogans made comment, which is to be expected and all was right with the world. Until I was approached by two young guys, around nineteen, in wife beaters and shorts, with tacky-ass tattoos curled up their arms.
“What are you writing? What are you writing?
Is it a poem? Is it a diary? Its a diary! Write about us! You saw two guys, one in a blue shirt, good looking fella, called Adam. The other in white, called Tom. Go orn.”
Just for shits and giggles, I wrote this down, and showed them. They were quite pleased, or flattered perhaps.
They taught me their special handshake, and were impressed that I learned it so quickly. (Editor’s note: I’m not good at physical coordination type tasks, but I picked this one up easily as it was largely based on the actions to the school yard rhyme, ‘down by the banks of the hanky, panky’) In return, I taught them my old secret handshake.
“Whats your name? How old are you? What do you study? Where are you from? Can I have your number??”
I rebuffed the questions.
They looked at each other, and began to kiss. Before I had a chance to recover myself they had got off the train, yelling back from a distance, “We’re not gay!!”
I was alone in the carriage, and had no one to share my confusion at what had just happened with.