A person can hear people say, “You should write a book,” only so many times before acting. When I decided it was time to write Blue Smartie, I was 31 and had been travelling for 32 months. I’d been all over the world in search of a home away from my country, and one that had Latin features. For some reason, I’d been escaping the English-speaking world.
I did most of my writing in a small apartment in Medellin, Colombia, over five months, reflecting on life and more recent events. I’d done bits and pieces throughout my travels, but in Colombia I was completely alone, and due to the cultural differences, not too many people wanted to hear the products of my wacky mind.
When I originally sat down to write my story, I needed to come to terms with some of the events that’d evidently affected my mind. I believe that everything happens for a reason and that we sometimes experience low times so we can smile when the high times arrive. I ain’t a sorry, sad, “poor me” kinda guy, I can assure you; even though everything that’s happened in my life has been at the extreme “up” or “down” end of the spectrum, I’ve been lucky enough to find a laugh throughout the entire ride.
The thing is, by the time I arrived in Colombia I had many things on my mind, and in South America it wouldn’t always be wisest to share my story with everyone I met. I mean, some of those people have serious problems, such as not having shoes or food—and plenty bloody more; that’s for sure. Everybody has a story, and some people have an extreme one; it was just that I had stuff I needed to get off my chest, and I’d never seen a “shrink,” so I thought I’d have a crack at sorting the stuff out myself.You see, sometimes when you’re sharing a story like mine, people can’t see how it’s a problem—and it’s not, either, I must say. The problem lies more in the changes in the people around you after you tell them your details. The changes can manifest in various ways; it’s just that as time goes on, the story plays on the human mind.
I’m living an interesting life and one that’s very different from the lives of a lot of people who are caught up in the rat race or their society. I’ve been lucky enough to be able to escape being caught up, for now. I understand that circumstances can change at any point in a person’s life and that, as a consequence, we should never take anything for granted. I found that out while sitting in a hospital bed about a year and a half ago, when I’d gone a little too loco at Brazil’s Carnival. I got flown home in a wheelchair, was operated on and found out what it’s like to be without physical function for a bit. Everything happens for a reason.
Now I’ve got my function back, and I’m well and truly back on my horse, I’ve been fortunate enough to recognize the importance of my body’s functioning, and I’ve reached the stage at which I need to exercise my mind. Not something you’d usually hear a tough-guy Australian male say, but it’s time to evolve and beat the game that society’s created. Now’s when you either sink or swim.
When you’ve finished reading the book at hand, please think about the journey and what it’s like to be in someone else’s shoes. Some people will pinch the eye out of your dick, if you’re not looking. The problem for them isn’t their short-term gain; it’s what they’ll gain in the end.