The Black Widow’s Bucket List

In celebration of my 22nd birthday, I’ve decided to publish my personal bucket list.

Before I had never really thought of having a bucket list. I thought my life was pretty great and didn’t really feel the need to go extreme and jump out of a plane or bungee jump off a bridge in New Zealand, but then I stopped to think of all the things I haven’t done.

How cute is this movie though?!

How cute is this movie though?!

I haven’t gone travelling (which will be rectified later this year).
I haven’t even left this country.
I haven’t been hiking at night.
I haven’t been part of an animal rights liberation protest.
I haven’t stepped foot in a wrestling ring.
I haven’t fulfilled my wildest fantasies.

So by the time I pass on – and if my palm is to be believed, I’m dying pretty early – I want to have accomplished at least 80% of this bucket list.

Alas, here we are:

The Black Widow’s Bucket List
[x] Attend a wrestling class and make a Beautiful People style entrance.
[x] Go skydiving, regardless of how much I hate heights.
[x] Attend an animal rights liberation protest, with my own sign.
[x] Go hiking at night.
[x] Travel across Europe by myself (and hopefully not be that naive traveller who gets their things stolen)
[x] Fill a Ute bed wtih pillows and blankets and sleep out under the stars.
[x] Abseiling, also despite my fear of heights.
[x] Perform a flash-mob like pole dancing routine OUTTA NOWHERE.
[x] Cycle through Central Park.
[x] Go (country) star hunting in Nashville.
[x] Go on a trip with a fake persona and back story and make it last for the entire duration.
[x] Volunteer at a soup kitchen.
[x] Organise and host a charity fundraiser for the local firehouse.
[x] Go on a hot air balloon ride… despite my fear of heights.
[x] Mud wrestle.
[x] Publish a novel.
[x] Go on a blind date.
[x] Take up capoeira.
[x] Live in a different country for at least six months.
[x] Fly first class.
[x] Dress up as the Bella Twins for a costume party (another person required).
[x] Tell Katy Perry she sucks.
[x] Change the world.

I encourage everyone to start their own bucket list and see what kind of whacky and crazy things they can come up with. A life not lived is not a life I want to live.

– by The Black Widow

Review: Forbidden Sister

With a title like this and a book cover like that, I was expecting big things from this novel. I had heard of Virginia Andrews’ novel legacy but had never read any of her stuff so I was keen to dig in.

Forbidden Sister by Virginia Andrews follows the life of Emmie Wilcox, a young impressionable teenager who was pretty much raised as an only child after her stern military-esque father kicked out her older, rebellious sister Roxy. Emmie’s interest in her sister piques when she finds out that she is a high class escort who lives in the same city. Watch out Emmie… curiosity killed the cat…

Look at that seductive book cover...

Look at that seductive book cover…

I was satisfied with the book. It was very well written and the character of Emmie was semi easy to relate to.


There were an awfully large amount of rhetorical questions posed in this book. I get that a few here and there can be very effective in conveying a message across, but there just seemed to be way too many rhetorical questions used on almost every page of the novel. The language Andrews used was very strong and sophisticated and it gave me as a reader a good sense of what to feel and what was going on. Other than the over-usage of rhetorical questions, I quite liked Andrews’ style of writing and would pick up another book of hers based on the name.

The storyline in Forbidden Sister confused me. I personally didn’t understand the main point of the book; it just seemed as if things would just constantly happen to Emmie but none of those things or “events” particularly stood out as the main point of the book. Don’t even get me started on the epilogue which didn’t give me closure at all. In fact, it left me hanging for more and left me with even more questions than before. I get that one of the main points of the book was Emmie finding her sister and re-establishing that sibling bond but I felt as if that point of the story was nearly overshadowed by other events in the book.

Emmie as a character was truly original when it comes to novels of the same genre and that made me like her; while I don’t know what it’s like to grow up with a military-esque father (or maybe I do, depending on how you look at it) I felt as if I could truly empathise with her need to succeed and achieve to please her parents. Being 15 was a good six years ago for me so going back to my young teenager years, I understood what was going through her head and why. Roxy, however, was the more intriguing character in my sweet and humble opinion; having watched Secret Diary of a Call Girl, I had a fair idea of what escorts personalities were like and what they did and how they would react to certain situations… or at least how Billie Piper would. The aura of mystery Roxy carried, coupled with her no-nonsense attitude, made her the star of the book.

Style of writing:

Overall, I found Forbidden Sister to be a good read. It didn’t really let me down (besides the epilogue but that’s a different story) but in saying that, it didn’t wow me. It was just a good read. I really hope that is not the end of Emmie and Roxy’s story… or stories.

– by The Black Widow

Adult Skills

Over the age of eighteen? Well this article was written for you – unless you have your shit together, than you can ignore all of this. But don’t lie to yourself. If you’re that twenty-something year old who just moved out of their childhood home, or that middle-aged man who just separated and realised that they actually don’t know how to wash their own jocks then read on.

I don’t care if you’re happy to keep letting the people around you do every job that you haven’t bothered to learn; you’re an adult. There are some things that you have to know before it’s too late. But before we continue I admit that I don’t know how to do half of these things, however I am aware that I should.


Is this you?

Is this you?

I don’t expect even the most pro-active of people to be great at this, but if you’re at least able to not make yourself sick then that’s good enough. Cooking is the shit. It satisfies your mind, your tum-tum, and if you get better at it, your ego. Domino’s pizza and two-minute noodles can only satisfy a person for so long; ditching the microwavables and deep-fried crapola means that you’re on your way to becoming a well-balanced adult. Don’t fool yourself buddy; it doesn’t matter how many KFC coupons you’ve saved up, in the long run learning to at least fry an egg will keep your wallet and stomach comfortably full.



How not to clean

What the fuck are you doing mopping the floor with detergent? You obviously didn’t help your parents with the cleaning, did you? You can’t survive simply off of windex and detergent, you need various chemicals for various things. You could ask your parents because they are probably real adults and will help you out. If you don’t want your dishwasher to overflow with bubbles or you’re wanting to get rid of those weird mushrooms growing out of your shower, it’s time to pick up a Chux and read some instructions.


I don’t mean this in a general way like “you’re not an adult unless you read x amount of novels,” but there are some things that might prove helpful to read. The older you get the easier it is to get fat. That grid of numbers on the back of food packages could help you determine what you should eat, how much and why. Buzz-words like “low-fat” and “90% of your daily fibre” may lead you to think that some products are superior, but this deception can vanish when you read its Nutritional Information.

Another thing that should make sense to you is analogue time. For some people it really is a problem. But not every watch and clock in the world has switched over to digital just yet, so don’t assume that you don’t need to know how to read them.

Mend and Spend


Time to get a new shirt

Calm down; you don’t need a sewing machine just yet, but you should have a few things in case of emergencies. Thread, needle, and maybe some buttons will come in handy (On another note: KEEP the spare buttons that come with new clothing). Before planning a trip to K-Mart really look at the damage. If it’s a small hole or a lost button chances are you can mend it yourself rather than spending more mulla.

Another part of being an adult is realising that expensive clothes are just that for a reason. As a rule of thumb these clothes will last longer, assuming you care for it responsibly. It means that instead of getting a pair of skinnys from Target that will last a month or two, you should maybe check out that fancy looking denim boutique.


Even though many adults are still supported by other people (no shame) there is still a certain level of responsibility you have to have. It’s dependent on the person but simply budgeting or tracking what you buy can help you save money. This is a tip I’ve heard over and over again but it still rings true: When you think of buying something, think of what you would rather be given by somebody else; that thing or the equivalent in money?

Always making sure you have some sort of income is essential to live a good life, this means not quitting a job before you find a new one, remembering to report to Centrelink or even being grateful for the money someone else is supporting you with.

Long story short: Money keeps you alive, always make sure you have a steady supply of it.

Listen to your body


Ow! My spraying hand

After eighteen years of your life you should be used to your own body, but sometimes it’s easy to forget that you are responsible for it. It seems like common sense but sometimes we neglect going to the doctors and certain specialists because of the time, effort, and expenses that come with it. These things can exponentially rise if left alone; toothaches can turn into expensive root-canal procedures, intolerances can lead to severe allergies. And the routine things we have to do; pap smears, STD checks and breast exams are things that could potentially save your life. Keep up with your checkups.

Wrap A Present

Seriously, it’s not funny anymore. Nobody likes a nice present bundled up in butchers paper and masking tape.

−  by Josefina Huq

Review: Hopeless

I’m not trying to sound like a broken record a la the last book review I did, but I finally got around to finishing this wonderful novel that I had been in the middle of for a good month. Now that this novel is finished, I’ve realised that I need to do some serious book shopping!

Hopeless by Colleen Hoover details the life of 17-year-old Sky, an extremely sheltered young girl whose life is turned upside down when she meets Dean Holder, the resident bad boy with a bad reputation to match her, to be frank, slutty reputation… despite not being a slut.

This novel starts out pretty cruisy, until you get to the middle-ish of the novel where:

Never in my 21 years of reading novels have I read a book that escalated as quickly as Hopeless. What seemingly starts off as a typical teenage romance novel turned upside down on its head and did a Booker T spinaroonie because the drama that followed was so… dramatic. Without revealing too much, the drama was so good.

The storyline was so predictable that it was unpredictable, if that makes sense. I read it thinking “Oh yeah, and now this is going to happen and this is going to happen” and while some of my predictions were correct, most of them were so wrong that I felt the need to say sorry to Colleen Hoover. Colleen, if you’re reading this, please forgive me for doubting your excellent storyline abilities. The characters personalities were expressed well in the novel through the use of descriptive writing and the image of Dean Holder was clear in my head. COUGH Steve Grand.

The relationship between Sky and Dean was cute, albeit a bit clichè. Two unusually attractive teenagers with troubled pasts fall for each other and are completely in love after a month or two of being completely inseparable. Sky was a hit-or-miss with me; she was either really annoying and “Wah feel sorry for me” one minute and next, she was this funny, sassy spitfire who I found myself to really like. Dean Holder was perfect… almost too perfect. He was so swoon-worthy that I didn’t feel the need to swoon. He had his shining moments just like Sky, though, so I will praise him as a character.

Colleen Hoover’s use of language in this book was almost flawless. The action in the novel was impeccable and the use of imagery and other descriptions painted a clear picture in my head as I read this novel. I can no doubt see why this novel is so acclaimed and why it’s a New York Times bestseller – the author is great and the story is even better. The fact that nearly all the loose ends in this novel were tied together in a nifty little bow by the end of the story demands a round of applause for Hoover who really, in my sweet and humble opinion, knocked this one out of the park.

Style of writing: 8.6/10
Overall: 8.8/10

I can guarantee you, whether you’re a romance reader or not, that this is definitely a must read. I was so wowed with the entire novel as a whole that I don’t know what to do with my life now that I’ve finished it. I can also guarantee you that you will not want to put this book back down once you’ve gotten into it. It is that damn good.

– by The Black Widow