I did an interview with a Johnson & Friends enthusiast for Vice and it was a lot of fun.
As a child, I ate Vietnamese food with my family every day. It was a shock to me to learn that not everyone had chopsticks in their drawers at home. Vietnamese food was part and parcel of my daily existence – the clinking of chopsticks on china, the liberal application of nước mắm (fish sauce) to everything (seriously, everything), the methodical rhythm of helping my mother make pastries and rice paper rolls, hands moving like a tiny factory.
Giving the character a feminist makeover doesn’t negate the troubling nature of her relationship with the Beast – in fact, many women who do suffer in abusive or manipulative relationships are headstrong feminists. This failure to recognise that independence and susceptibility to violence and abuse are not mutually exclusive is dangerous, because it purports that only the ‘weak’ can find themselves in such situations.
It was the kind of intense, instant connection that I’d only seen in awful rom-coms, where I was transfixed with every word that came out of his mouth and thought he was made of magic. He was well-read and thoughtful, considerate and eloquent. The conversations we had during our brief fling tore open the confines of my mind like so few had before.
He was four years younger than me – still young enough to be considered “early twenties”, as I trudged towards the end of mine. I felt I’d found someone with whom I connected in the most perfect way, but so many of my friends fixated on his age: how could I possibly find any of that in someone so young?
I am writing to you from 2017, a time you probably can’t even fathom, since you’re still in high school and can’t see beyond the looming dread of the HSC (which, by the way, you will do fine in, and you will get into the course you want – so don’t stress too much, but probably don’t keep talking to that boy from Perth on MSN all throughout Year 12, because he’s a loser and you can and will do better).
There’s a difference between having a “type” and reducing people to a singular, uncontrollable factor about themselves, like race. I don’t message white guys to tell them I love garlic bread (for the record, I bloody love garlic bread); why would a white man think that telling me how much he loves bánh mì is a hot ticket into my pants?
I’m writing a monthly fictional diary column for Scum this year called Mai’s Super Sweet Sixteen, following the life of Mai Tran, a 16-year-old girl, in the year 2005.
Follow along here!
Rebecca Bunch is crazy. Sure, she comes with quirks, cute outfits and theatrical musical numbers, but the chipper protagonist of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is in serious need of help.
My name is Giselle, and I’m an online dating addict.
Those are just a few of the ways I’ve heard my surname mangled by well-meaning Australian friends and strangers.
I’ll admit it’s only recently that I’ve begun to pronounce it correctly to non-Vietnamese people – for a long time, I didn’t want to inconvenience or confuse anyone. When they asked what my name was, I said New-en – it was less complicated for them, even if it made me uneasy.