" Synchromysticism:
The art of realizing meaningful coincidence in the seemingly mundane with mystical or esoteric significance."

- Jake Kotze

March 13, 2016

Michelle Law and Sh*t Asian Mothers ;-)

The first time I had ever heard of Michelle Law was when I was at the 2014 Byron Bay Writer's Festival and stumbled across the book that she co-wrote with her brother Ben.
I bought the humorous book of Michelle's while buying some other books at the Festival bookstore and then ran into her while walking to another talk and stopped and asked her if she would sign my copy. 
'My Life as a Joke' talk, 2014 at the BBWF.
I later that day went to a talk where Michelle was on the panel called, 'My Life as a Joke' and the chairperson  of the talk, Mick O'Regan introduced Michelle as the author of the book 'Shit Asian Mothers' , instead of the real title of her book,
'Shit Asian Mothers Say'.
Whether Mick did this on purpose for a laugh, or not, it certainly got some and so basically the first joke of the talk was fired off.
I had also bought a book titled , 'Once Upon a Time in Oz: Edition 42', which had a chapter featuring Michelle Law and her story of growing up in Oz.
I ended up finding out that Michelle was more than just a comedian, she was a gutsy person putting her life in the spotlight and also making important documentaries for TV.
Clip: SUICIDE AND ME (ABC2 - Opening Shot) - "I am hurting"
Having attempted suicide myself about 30 years ago as a teenager I can't help but see that many comedians are but sad clowns underneath all the laughter, trying to make sense of a sometimes seemingly senseless and cruel world.
Inside a Suicide Helpline - clip from SUICIDE AND ME (ABC2 - Opening Shot Series 2)
While I personally don't like to talk much about the reasons and motivations behind my own attempt at a young age, I do think society needs to talk more about this topic, as in today's world suicide is an ever growing problem. 
People in the media that seem happy-go-lucky types regularly end up taking their own lives later on down the track and then the stories pour out about the long life battle of depression these people had, such as Mike Gibson pictured below, who took his own life on my birthday last year.
It's a subject that's not going to go away anytime soon, either.
So, it's good to see people like Michelle putting the subject in the spotlight and opening up the discussion and acknowledging that there is a huge problem out there.
The pressures of modern life are only getting harder and people are becoming more and more alienated in a society that sets the bar quite high on all too many areas of life. 
Personally, I don't see any easy solutions to this problem in modern society, because everyone has their own tightrope to walk and you can only walk it one step at a time, not knowing what may come along and try to knock you off it, either real, or imagined. 
Sometimes life paints you into a corner and suicide may seem the only real option to you, as in the case of Robin Williams, not that I'm condoning his actions, but neither will I condemn them, as given the choice he had to face, I'm not sure I wouldn't have picked that option, either.
Prophetic Scene from the Movie "Angriest Man in Brooklyn"
But like the excellent movie and novel by Paulo Coelho
'Veronika Decides to Die', the trick is to take each day as it comes and try to see the things that make life worth living than the things that make life worth not. 
Anyway, it's good to see Michelle made the 
17 Asian Australians That Are Making Waves And Breaking Stereotypes
list and bringing not just topics such as suicide into public consciousness, but lots of other worthwhile issues, as well as laughter into Australian lives.
I also caught another talk this year that Michelle took part in at the Woodfoord Folkfest, which you can read about by clicking on the red link below -
Wednesday at Woodford...Again
Michelle said she was writing a play which was going to take to the stage on a Brisbane theatre in the near future, so that should be interesting.
I think Michelle's best work lay in front of her, so it will be interesting to see how her media career and projects pan out in the future from such a Sh*t little book ;-)

UPDATE: March 4th, 2017
Single Asian Female
This play is a classic.

1 comment:

Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

I think Robin Williams always had a profound sense of his own mortality. Maybe a lot of comedians, poets, artists and other creative types do too. Interesting a provocative post, Daz.