Thursday, 19 January 2017

Venn Diagrams

Today, in Big Victories in the #NewHousemateChronicles, I bit the bullet, sat down with one antisocial housemate and had a Deep & Meaningful conversation with him about why it wasn't sitting right with me that 95% of my household socialising was with 1 out of 3 housemates.

[Bonus material not in the original FB post] So I asked the dude, Blake, if he was busy, and he said, "Pretty free, what's up?" "Let's have a chat," I said, "I wanna talk to you about something, but it's potentially kinda awkward." "Oh?" he said, as I awkwardly gestured for him to take a seat in the computer room. "Yeahhh. Don't worry though, it's not a gay thing! I'm not about to profess my love for you," I joked, laughing, though technically, anything that I say would, by default, be a gay thing. But anyway.

So I told him about how I didn't always feel comfortable around him because of the lack of communication; how sometimes I felt there was a "zone of silence" around him that meant I couldn't talk to him, and how that uncomfortable "zone of silence" sometimes infiltrated my bedroom because we are virtually separated by a single wall when he's at his computer, meaning I often feel inclined to leave my room when he's out there gaming and stuff. I told him that even though I'm not by any means a supremely social person, I am an extroverted emo sensitive artist (LOL) who does frequently draw on — and is affected by — the energies of other people. Hence, a "closed-off" energy wasn't particularly palatable.

I also explained why it was important for me to talk to him, and not the other remaining antisocial housemate, about this matter: because of the Venn diagram. What Venn diagram, you ask? Well, these Venn diagrams:

Where N = Nick
M = Social Housemate
Br = Plant-smoking Antisocial Housemate
Bl = Blake, the Housemate in Question

These circles represent spatial overlap/paths crossed between Nick and housemates. The black areas are obviously the degree of overlap.

As you can see, Nick and M cross paths significantly because both of us work from home; fortunately, M's the outgoing one; if he were antisocial, and we were spending so much time with each other in the common areas of the house, I would've gone nuts a long time ago!!!

Nick and Blake have a significant enough overlap that makes it just that much uncomfortable for us to be in the same room sometimes, especially if we don't talk. As for Nick and Br... well, we'll come to that!

Anyway, I explained this (without visual representation) to Blake, and he took it really well! He seemed receptive; agreed that in the 10 weeks since I moved in we'd not had a single decent conversation (until this one); admitted that he's "not a talkative person"; and said he totally understood where I'm coming from.

I also told him how I'd begun planning my activities to coincide with his coming-home time to reduce the Venn diagram overlap: spending too much time at Dome, purposely going to the gym in the evenings etc; dodging rooms he's in to avoid awkward silences and non-communication, not feeling comfortable in my own home. We both agreed that shouldn't happen.

I reassured him I don't expect him to change — people rarely change for other people, sometimes not even their partners!, much less virtual strangers/housemates — but at least by just being cognisant of the fact that I was being affected by the "invisible wall of non-interaction", small steps could be made to rectify the situation; hopefully we'd eventually be able to dismantle the invisible wall so that I don't feel as if a) he doesn't like me (which he says is not true) and b) I can't talk to him (which he says is also not true, unless he's "intently gaming and or listening to music and shite"). Arf.

Now he's outside at his computer [as of the time of the FB post] and for the first time in a long time I don't feel compelled to close my door. Let's see how things go moving forward; I'm cautiously optimistic. And with 2/3 of the house potentially communicating/interacting/having camaraderie with me, the balance of power has shifted towards the positive, and the remaining antisocial bloke (plant-smoking guy) can remain the housemate who I only very occasionally interact with, so much so that it's a novelty to greet him when our paths cross. #nickforthewin

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

New Year's Shenanigans and More Recaps

Yo. So. New Year's. What did I do? Hmmm. Oh yes, headed to my mate John's place in Coolbellup and basically got sloshed and spent the night there, hahahaha. Ummm not much else to report about New Year's, although I did wear a shirt that looked a bit like a colouring book, which resulted in some people grabbing some magic markers and actually filling the blanks, LOL!!!

They kept within the lines and everyting!
My dear buddy Scotty
And his girlfriend Rhianna. Fun fact: Scotty, Rhi and I went to catch the movie
'La La Land' at Luna Cinemas several days before this NY's party. Good times. 
I'll come back with updates on my Fringe show shortly; but let me leave you with miscellaneous recaps of more stuff that happened/I got up to over the past few weeks leading up to now-ish.

* Did a film shoot for a web series that Scott (above) is currently doing, titled Twin Town. I was just one of the extras in the background, but that was pretty fun. See if you can spot me!

* Went to the Freo dog beach for the first time with Allison just a little before Christmas, with her lovely Great Dane Vera. Unfortunately the day took a little bit of an adventurous turn when Vera got a pretty deep (but thankfully non-serious) cut in her leg due to an encounter with an overexcited other dog that ended up scratching her. Still, twas a good day. Here are some pics:

* Just last weekend (Saturday, Jan 7) I met up with Josie, one of the potential housemates I'd interviewed with and had considered living with, and hung out with her and her friends at Sweetwater Rooftop Bar also in Freo. That was really a lot of fun... just chit-chatting and having cocktails, mmm. Last week I also spent a little bit of time with Rhett, a.k.a. Buff Mechanic Guy, who came over to my house at North Lake Rd to take a look at my rusty ol' car. You know what later struck me? That I've connected, and had more social interaction and good times, with two people whom I could have lived with, in the timespan of approximately an hour (mechanic) and three hours (nurse); in stark contrast to the two blokes I currently do live with! That, my friends, is irony. Arf. 

But hey, look, I know I've been saying a few things about my current housemates but really, they are good guys. They are. It's just that they're so set in their ways and maybe someone (i.e. me) needs to call them out on it and make them see that it's not so bad to be sociable!! We'll see how this develops over time, k? Heh. Meanwhile, here's me, Josie and the rest of her friends at the bar that night:

* Speaking of Mechanic Guy, just yesterday (Monday) I'd stopped at a petrol station in Applecross, fumbled with my car key because the plastic holder/dongle had kinda detached itself into two, put it back together, filled the car, and then realised the engine wouldn't start. Dismayed, I first tried to get help from the service station guy behind the counter, but it turns out he was totally useless, oy. So I called Rhett, who was fortunately available and nice enough to hurry right over. Straightaway he diagnosed it wasn't the battery; so what could be causing it to not start? Turns out it was the car immobiliser: when the key dongle had come apart, a tiny little microchip had fallen out of it. 

Cut to: me and Mechanic Guy hunting around, needle-in-haystack-style, for this microchip, without which I would've been indefinitely stranded. It took some time but Rhett finally found it and we were able to get the car started again, but not without me feeling kinda embarrassed about it, lol. Luckily Rhett's a good guy and turning out to be a good mate; it would have been even more embarrassing, I think, had I called for a mechanic stranger to come and help me out. I mean, think about it... we both had to look high and low for this tiny black nondescript square thing that could've fallen out anywhere! Quite the predicament indeed. Before he took off, Rhett provided one more vital service: supergluing the dongle together so that this wouldn't happen again. Hahahaha!!

* I've been hitting the gym a bit more regularly these days, hoping to get into better health and shape, heh. Also been doing a bit of walking along the river, which is lovely on these summer evenings:

Lovely sunset.
Me out for a walk!
The night after hanging out with Josie at the bar, I actually did the unthinkable: I went to the gym after midnight and did a workout! WTF! What's going on?!?! LOL. Actually, it was because apparently my house didn't have water due to a burst water main or something (a council issue, not a household issue); so I figured I'd shower at the gym. And since I was at the gym anyway... well, why not??

12:15am on Saturday night/Sun morning and the gym wasn't empty.
Okay, boys and girls, I think that about wraps it up for the recaps! We're almost entirely up to date now... so I'll be back soon with aforementioned Fringe updates, k? Till then...!

Conflicts (Continued) and FB Posts Galore!

I'm back! (If you're reading this for the first time, you should read the older post below first!) Where was I? Oh yes, conflict. Well, remember I mentioned several posts ago that someone had rubbed me the wrong way while I'd been hanging out with my housemates over drinks and board games? Well, that dude was actually the guy who moved out of here. Long story short, don't wanna go into it, but he messaged me on Facebook after I'd posted about the recent WiFi-turning-off incident. And since I was already in a crappy mood, I proceeded to tell him that I was ticked off at him, too, over the stuff he'd said to me that night during board games. Let's just say that chat didn't end well, and I ended up terminating the conversation and, for the time being, terminating our friendship acquaintanceship.

Subsequently that whole incident led to several revelations, some within myself and others via interactions with the housemates. I now proceed to feature some FB posts about these revelations, since it's kinda annoying and tiring to recap these things by typing them anew, heh. First off, the serious thought-provoker:

Oy, what a downer! In case you're wondering, there's no conclusion to that storyline; I guess it's ongoing. Though it did result in this little post:

....And this gem:

It also led to this exchange with my housemate:

Since we're on the subject of interactions with housemates, there were these few other tidbits:

And oh yeah, this:


Since the FB posts above have moved into the New Year, let me end this now and come back with more updates and recaps on what I've been up to since 2017 hit us. Stay tuned!

2017?!?!?! Let's Talk About Christmas (and Conflict)

Hey, everyone!! HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! Okay, I'm about 10 days too late, haha! As usual, the clock is just a-tickin' and I'm currently really busy in the midst of trying to finish the Alice in Wonderland project for back home, as well as preparing for Four in Fifty at Laneway Lounge at the end of the month, as part of Perth Fringe! Whoo-hoo!! But before we get to all that, let's do some recaps, shall we? Let me see, what has been a-happening...? I guess we shall go back to Christmastime... **cue dream-like flashback music**

Christmas Eve! A pretty awesome day which was spent at Bernie and Mikey's as they hosted a lovely potluck lunch, with the Plottkes, the Bates, Beattie and little old me in attendance. Here, let some photos paint the picture:

Lovely, eh? We did a Secret Santa gift-exchange and I received a bunch of yummy teas, which is awesome. 

On Christmas Day, I visited my dear friend Sarah to join her and her family for a scrumptious lunch. In attendance were Sarah's mum Julie and stepdad Michael; Sarah's grandparents; her brother, and his girlfriend. All in all, another lovely day, and I even received a couple of presents, which I wasn't expecting: a nice bottle of wine in a "hand-blown" bottle, i.e. a uniquely asymmetrical shape because it was blown by a Frenchman, apparently. Whether he was the winemaker or just a bottle-blower I can't be sure. Anyway. I also received some chocolates, which is always lovely. And that evening I headed over to Alex and Mel's to join them by their poolside. Hark, more pics!

Lunchies and choccy-filled Christmas baubles at Sarah's!

Sparklers at Alex and Mel's!
During this period leading up to New Year's, I continued to try to connect with the couple of housemates here at North Lake Road who have been pretty quiet and less-than-outgoing. Unfortunately it's an ongoing thing till today; some days I feel I'm making progress with them, other days it's a few steps backwards. But anyway, for Christmas I decided to get them some presents as well. Only thing is, what do you get a couple of guys when you don't really know very much about them at all?? Oy!

For Blake (not spelt correctly; his name is pretty unique so I'm avoiding spelling it in its proper incarnation lest he does some sort of search or something and discovers this, arf!), I discovered he was a fan of the cartoon series Adventure Time, so I did an online purchase of an action figure of Jake the dog. Blake was really chuffed when he received it, so much so that a couple of days later I saw Jake perched on his computer desk next to his monitor, where it remains to this day. So I'd call that a win, arf arf:

Much to my surprise, Blake even bought me a gift in return!

With Brendan, the other housemate, it was equally as difficult trying to figure out what to get him. As it turns out, Bren likes to smoke a... let's just say, a certain type of plant so that it makes him feel good, haha! And he was getting into trouble with Blake because Bren kept stealing Blake's little ceramic bowls from the kitchen so he could chop up his "plants" to be smoked. So I decided to get him his very own set of bowls specifically to be used for that purpose. I even labelled one of them (the pink one, appropriately), "Bren's Happy Bowls of Fun". The fact that they were rainbow coloured was even more of a bonus! He seemed very happy with them, though I have no idea where they are now as they're not in his room. Hmmmmm. Anyway. Here they were:

Arf arf!

Anyway. So that covers the Christmas period, which, all in all, was pretty good. The lead-up to New Year's was pretty quiet, with just me and the two Bs in the house as our other housemate, the outgoing dude M, was away with his girlfriend (who's also lovely). AHH, but the lead-up to New Year's wasn't necessarily without some drama. See, as I've already established, the three boys are avid gamers (sigh) and so they tend to get a little, shall we say, sensitive about the internet, especially when any of us does activity that causes a slowdown (or "lag", as they say). 

One day I was streaming a Youtube video (low-quality, too!) and one of the boys voices his unhappiness with the lag. I apologised and said I'd stop... but then, without saying anything, the dude proceeds to turn the WiFi off (since the WiFi is apparently a contributor to the slowdown, as I've also mentioned before). Suffice it to say, I was not a happy Nick!!! See, it's perfectly OK to turn off the WiFi, but you gotta tell me or simply ask, "Hey man, is it OK if I turn it off??" What's not OK is to presume you can just do it when you know that someone else in the house is using it! Grr!!

Anyway it's water under the bridge now because the housemate and I have discussed it (in typically very-brief fashion since he's not much of a talker) and we're cool (though if you're connected to me via my personal FB profile, you can read about that incident and my angry reaction here). THAT SAID... that wasn't the end of it; there was still a bit more conflict to come!! I'll start a new post for that one, since I don't wanna negate the Christmas festivities too much, LOL...! 

To be continued... (which is a bit silly to type since new posts are going to be on top of this one and hence will be read first in all likelihood. Oh well.)