Monthly Archives: July 2014

The time I asked Tracy Grimshaw to have coffee with me.

Ok. The other day I asked Tracy Grimshaw to have coffee with me.

I think anyone who knows me knows that I’m quite partial to Tracy. She’s the reason I watch commercial televison and my answer to every ‘Which celebrity would you….’ question.

You might remember she recently followed me on Twitter, which I can only imagine happened out of a mixture of pity and annoyance. I was pretty excited. Actually, I was more than excited. I did a dance, high-fived myself and called my closest friends. I’d actually become a blip on Tracy Grimshaw’s radar. Did life get any sweeter? Even when my mother questioned why she’d be following me, I soldiered on. Turns out everyone’s a critic.

After my excitement died down a little bit, I started to think. She’s my most favourite and bestest celebrity ever. What harm could come of asking her to have a coffee with me? That, right there, is probably where I went wrong. Why on earth would Tracy Grimshaw want to have a coffee with me? I was nervous but I wanted to take a shot. I wanted to see if the journalist I’d loved since I saw her hypnotise a yabby around ten years ago would want to hang out with me.

So I became courageous. Like ninja courageous. As I sat on my couch, I started to think seriously about it. I could, in actual fact, send her a direct message on Twitter and ask her casually to have a coffee with me the next time she was in Brisbane.

The simplicity of the plan was what appeared to make it so genius. Even my usual self-doubting inner dialogue became excited. ‘Oh wow, Tysoe! Yes! What a great idea! She’s a journalist. You’re doing a post graduate degree in journalism. She has great hair. You have great hair. You could, in actual fact, be sisters! She would love to have coffee with a complete stranger! Tysoe – you’re a genius and not at all weird for thinking this way’.

Spurred on by some friends (and ok I admit it – my unusually positive inner voice), I spent more time than I care to admit to composing a message. It was going to be the key. It needed to be both casual & professional but also include my signature charm, humour and sophistication. What a breeze. I set to work immediately.

Five days later I had an ok message but an almost silent inner voice. Shit. Regardless, it was ‘go‘ time. I couldn’t delay any longer. The night I sent the message, I spent about three hours building up the courage to do it. Unfortunately, I had to do it sober as drinking might have made me too confident and thus far too chatty and that could have been completely disasterous.

I almost hurled. My hands were shaking and I felt my body go completely cold. I called friends who talked me out of whatever doubts had come swirling up inside me the minute I sent the message. They were great. I felt better. Sort of. It’s been three months and she hasn’t responded. She probably won’t, which is ok.

The great part about all of this is that I asked Tracy Grimshaw to have a coffee with me. My most favourite celebrity in the whole wide world. I was shaking and almost hurled but I managed to do it. I feel brave and pretty cool and even though a little bit of sick still comes into my mouth every time I think about it, I ASKED TRACY GRIMSHAW TO HAVE A COFFEE WITH ME.

What did you do today?



Filed under life stuff

I feel annoyed about Thorpie

So here goes. I have a real problem with Thorpie’s ‘coming out’ parade. The worst part is – I don’t even really know why I feel this way. I’ve tried to be happy. I’ve tried to be cool and act like it doesn’t matter, but something still bothers me. 

I’ve sat and listened to people talk endlessly about how brave his interview was. I agree. How proud we are of him. I agree. How no one really cares that he’s gay and that we should all just leave him alone. I don’t agree. 

And then these feelings bubble up. This sort of uncomfortable, indigestion-inducing anger and I can’t quite put my finger on why it keeps happening. 

So, let’s get this straight (pardon me). As a lesbian, I’m thrilled we can add another member to the club. Tall, handsome Thorpie. One of the best swimmers the world has ever seen! What wonderful news!! Na na na na na and all that. 

Something still bothers me, though. 

Is it maybe his constant denial on the subject? A little bit. But don’t get me wrong, there is a huge part of me that can understand it too. Being forced out of a closet you didn’t even know existed. Expected to answer questions you didn’t know how to, all under the blinding glare of the world’s media at 15 would have been traumatic. I wouldn’t have told either. In fact, I would have just packed up my swimmers and walked home. 

However understandable his denial was at 15, the lie continued well into his adult life. All the way into his memoirs, where he went on the record as not, in fact being gay at all. So something that was actually no one’s business (which it really isn’t), suddenly became everyone’s business. I mean, why say anything at all? 

The money he received for his interview. Maybe that’s what bothers me the most. For being paid to be brave. To sit comfortably in a television studio while Michael Parkinson gently coaxed the information out of him. Maybe that’s what bothers me the most. Why though? 

I think it’s because millions of gay people worldwide do it every day. Without the fanfare, without the money and most times, without the incredibly welcoming reception Thorpie got. I certainly didn’t get $500 000 and a proverbial ‘hug’ from Australia. I too was dragged out before I was comfortable, met with a devastatingly critical reception that forced me back into the closet for 2 more years. 

So yes, Thorpie, good on you for being gay. I am happy and I am proud and I honestly don’t think it’s anyone else’s business. I hope you can finally live a peaceful life. 

For the rest of the gay men and women in Australia and across the world who are giving ‘coming out’ some serious consideration – best of luck!

Even though you don’t get to announce it to everyone at once on national television, I’m sure you’ll be great. Know that you’ll have plenty of time to perfect it too because you’ll no doubt need to do it every single day of your life.

Every time you change jobs, every time you get a new friend and sometimes, even to strangers on the street. You never know what kind of reception you’ll meet and you might be fearful for your life at one or all of those times.

Good luck my brave comrades! 

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Filed under life stuff