Words by Vaughan Dead
A recent study by MC’s anthropology department has revealed a staggering 98 per cent of people would rather listen to Canadian pop star Avril Lavigne’s 2002 hit “Sk8er Boi” for 24 hours straight than be forced to endure a single word about what you got up to on your overseas holiday.
Another two per cent went even further, stating they’d rather be Avril Lavigne and get pumped by Chad Kroeger while he sings “How You Remind Me” at the top of his lungs rather than listen to anything at all to do with your worldly adventures.
It begs the question: Why are people who are stuck at home with their lousy-arsed jobs in their boring-arsed lives so bummed about you having the sickest time ever? Perhaps the most likely reason is that people suck. They’re petty, jealous douchebags who can’t find it within their hearts to be interested in anything that doesn’t directly involve themselves. However, it could also be that your travel storytelling is shit. Thankfully, we’ve come up with five helpful tips for getting around this scenario so that the blame of disinterest can be hurled straight back on the listener and you can speak freely of your sojourns guilt free.
1. Tell stories in which you are either hurt or humiliated.
As already stated, it’s a sad reflection of human society that your story about getting a heaps sick tattoo in an underground Russian nightclub is like, “Yeah whatever,” while your story about getting a tattoo that looks like shit and gave you Hep C is like, “GET FUCKED! WOW!” Nothing pricks the ears of the bitter quite like the misfortune of others. Be sure to open your travelogues with the tale of the spider that laid eggs in your armpit, or the drug dealer who promised hash but sold you a piece of bark, or the cab driver who threatened to cut off your head with a machete if you didn’t let him smell your hair with his pants down. The more time you spent in pain or regretting your holiday, the more people will actually want to hear about it.
2. Keep it short.
“So we got off the plane and the customs line is literally hell. Pippa couldn’t find a dunny and there was this guy there with a moustache who looked like someone who worked at the airport, but we weren’t sure if he did, so we didn’t ask him where the toilet was. Anyway, by this stage Pippa’s busting, but we don’t want to lose our place in the line, because another flight has come in, which means we’ll have to go all the way to the back of the queue and…” Excuse me, but… are you fucking kidding me right now? You haven’t even made it out of the airport and I already hate you, your life, your shit holiday, your entire family and your cat. You are an awful person. Keep it short and save the details for your grandma, who’ll obsess over them even harder than you do (…and be over the moon someone is even talking to her).
3. Only show photos of celebrities.
If you did a bit of social posting while you were away, then congratulations! That’s job done as far as showing photos is concerned. Everyone has seen your shit and either liked it, ignored it or left some fawning/phony caption on it. There’s absolutely no excuse to wheel out those images (or videos – don’t you dare pull out any fucken videos or I’ll kill you with my death knife) again when you get home… UNLESS… unless you somehow wound up at the same party as drunk Drake or if that fat old dude asleep next to you on the beach is Jack Nicholson. For people who weren’t there, even an out of focus, grainy photo of Adam Sandler eating a turkey sub on the other side of the street is way better than the best thing that happened on your entire trip. Speaking of which…
4. Never talk about food.
Unless you ate a crook piece of calamari and shat your pants for three days straight, keep the food talk to less than zero.
5. Whatever you do, don’t talk about finding love.
A friend once told me, “Never pick the flowers overseas, because as alluring and exotic as they appear in their natural environment, by the time you get them home they will have wilted and died.” Solid advice. For the most part, holiday romances are best left as just that. There are exceptions, of course. I know of plenty of relationships that have overcome the challenges faced by cross-cultural pollination, but the problem here isn’t the relationship itself, it’s everyone else having to first hear about it, and then even worse, compensate their own lives in some minuscule way when you introduce your new bae into their world. See, once they get past, “How are you finding Australia? And how did you guys meet?” the conversation will dry up like a drop of rain in the Great Sandy Desert, and your friends will eventually resent you for ruining their vibes. The good news is that because you travelled and fell in love, you’re better than them anyway. The bad news is they may do the same to you one day and you’ll be well and truly fucken off it.