March 17th, 2013

Amak Axver

You'd think I'd forgotten about this or something!

Well, come June this year I'll have been on LiveJournal for a decade. That's pretty scary. Not that I've updated much over the last couple of years (nothing for 2012?!), but still, that's a damn long Internet presence. I'd disown most of the teenage shit now, but you get that.

I suppose the main reason I've stopped using LJ is because of the monumental way they fucked up Scrapbook in May last year. I like photography. I'm not good enough to be a pro photographer, or even an amateur who sells their photos here and there for some spare change, but it's fun. I like experiencing the world through my camera, and Scrapbook - since I've got so much space here via my permanent account - was where I hosted all my pictures. Then LJ pretty much destroyed everything in the migration to a new Scrapbook. I had spent hours upon hours, literally days, meticulously cataloguing my photos. There was an intricate, well-sorted web of sub-folders, tags, etc. Now? There are no subfolders, just a mess of folders (and no tags!). Almost every photo is not where it should be. There are photos from Geneva in my Wellington folders, photos from the Kapiti Coast in my Melbourne folders, and most stuff just ended up as an indistinct mess in a single generic folder. The task of re-ordering thousands of photos is simply beyond me. I guess the photos that are currently online will stay in the ether of the Internet, but I currently have no intention to add more or to even begin sorting things out. I don't know what I'll do with my photos either. I post fun or silly ones on Facebook, just personal shit, and I post my gig photos on Tumblr, but that's it. My landscape and hobby photos? Fucked if I know what'll happen to them. Sit on my hard drive I guess. Somebody can dig them up in fifty years and publish them in a book so people can remember what places and things looked like back in the day.

Anyway. My PhD is disturbingly close to completion. The money runs out at the end of August, so I better get it done by then - I can be granted further time but my scholarship can't be extended. It's terrifying. I wish I was back at the start. I've made so many mistakes, and I guess everybody says this when they get to the end of a project, but now that I'm at the end I know what a much better start would've been. Still, I think the final product will at least be some shade of decent, if not spectacular. I'm proud of some chapters, and hopefully the revision phase will improve the quality of the rest. The real challenge is not so much completing the PhD, but getting a job. There aren't exactly many jobs available for historians right now (fuck every stupid fucking recent government that's decided the humanities don't matter) but hopefully I'll be able to make a go of something or another. It doesn't help that I do not want to leave Melbourne. I don't want to lead the stereotypical academic life of setting up shop in one university, only to bustle off to another place three or four years later, and keep moving around chasing slightly more senior jobs, no matter how drab the actual city the job's in may be. I love Melbourne. It's home. If I have to leave, it will be fucking hard.

This entry all sounds terribly anxious or frustrated, yet in reality life's going great right now. Charlotte and I have a nice place and are having copious good times. Melbourne has so many good cafes and pubs and bakeries, and if I end up obese and penniless it will be the fault of this extraordinary culinary culture. The people I work with in the School of History are wonderful and fun people. There have been so many sensational gigs lately, and so many good albums have come out; it's an awesome time to be a music obsessive in Melbourne right now. I get to go back to New Zealand on a fairly regular basis - three times in the last year, including one brief jaunt to my beloved South Island. The 2013 footy season is almost upon us, and hopefully Essendon can push past the pre-season scandals and perform well on field. The horrendous heatwave is (hopefully) over and I'm still alive. Awesome.

I hope to hear from some of you on here who I haven't spoken to in ages. The Internet can be so ephemeral sometimes; people who are a big part of your life for a couple of years drift away, and it's always nice when you encounter them again. So if you want to keep up with me on a website where I can currently be found frequently, then add me on Facebook or follow my gig photography on Tumblr.