Missing Kat Muscat

29 Jul

  Kat Muscat was a brilliant writer. Her voice was like a sidewinder, curling herself through essays and thoughts. You always got the impression she would be relaxed and yet somehow earnest at once, someone totally accepting while pleasantly pushing back on tired debates and tired defenses.

She was like that in person too, curling herself into my couch as we zoned out on debates and crap tv, for we had the blessed shared high/low tastes (except she loved the Wire, fuck the Wire). After meeting at a rally, we kept bumping into one another at protests, launches or whatever gutters or events writers seem to gather at. I got to know that flirtatious way of hers, how she would giggle before she would deliver a one liner or how she could somehow shrug and hug at the same time.

I don’t let many people into my apartment (especially more than once) but Kat was the exception. We would sprawl on the couch and make a trade: one of her perfectly rolled cigarettes for one of my perfect cups of tea. Both of us would sigh at the perfection the other could give, before settling into our routine: junk food, junk tv and the junkiest, stickiest secrets we could share. Somehow, her partner Jack moved in with me and then Kat moved in. We would stumble home from our adventures or slumber, make that trade and then sling our secrets.

One night, Kat was trying to move my cat Tonkatsu and her head bounced off a wall corner. Blood geyesered from her the middle of her forehead like she was Harry fucking Potter at Carrie’s prom. She refused to go to the hospital so, after another perfect trade of smokes and tea and as the clock ticked to midnight, I convinced her to grab a cab with me. We spent hours making each other laugh uproariously in the Emergency Dept. I’ve never been more comfortable being the most hated person in a room from all our noise.

photo 2 We joked about the coffee that tasted as though it was made from peanut shells and would definitely be the next hipster craze, with low slung bearded men queing up every day for the coffee vending machine. We decided that “artisanal boyfriends” were a thing, live tweeted everything to annoy others with masses of selfies, defamed my cat to anyone who would (and even those who wouldn’t) listen and – some four hours later – decided that hospital is just a fancy form of Etsy where people are stitched together in sterile rooms instead of crafternoons.

We got out around 5am, everything still dark and outrageously cold, and tumbled down Victoria St. Kat’s head was filled with glue and bandages and giggles. Because we were both delirious by this point, I turned to Kat and sang “Take me out…tonight..take me anywhere, anywhere, I don’t care…”, laughing deliriously as she joined in. By the time we reached the brightly illuminated 24 hours Macca sign, we reached the crescendo and pointed at the sign screeching “there is a light that never goes out” and bought burgers to eat, delighting in our bitchy immaturity.

Some people you just mark out as constants in your life. They will always be there, you decide, so you tape off areas for them, unsent invitations for future milestones, a reserved seat in your life. Kat was one of those people. She would continue being an amazing aunt to my daughter as she grows, she would be at that mythical party I one day throw and I’d get to enjoy all those shrug-hugs and couch times when we would collapse on each other, trading tea and smokes.

And sometimes those people check out early and you’re left gasping for air at the obscenity of it all. She’s no longer here and I’m left with these empty spots reserved for her. She was 24, an obscenity to go so soon.

If I can’t yell to make her wake up, I want to yell at the world for letting this happen. This stupid world that lets in someone so lovely only to force her out so soon before I can read all her words, hear all her thoughts and spend more nights falling asleep on the couch in a chorus of snores.

photo 3 (1)If there’s any solace to be found, it’s that there are no better friends in this world than other writers. We’ve called each other, some of gathered together to take solace and some of us have hid at home to eat pizza, watch junk tv and smoke perfect cigarettes while drinking perfect cups of tea. I’ve never seen such care and generous thoughtfulness like I have from writers. For people who tend to work alone, writers know how to hold on to each other.

I spent decades trying to find my friends and I found them in writers, writers like Kat Muscat. It’s an obscenity that she died before I could spend decades with her.

I miss you, Kat Muscat. You were always loved and you always will be.

6 Responses to “Missing Kat Muscat”

  1. missbonnieblu July 29, 2015 at 9:06 pm #

    Reblogged this on missbonnieblu.

  2. Michelle July 29, 2015 at 10:07 pm #

    Such a full-blooded tribute at such a heartwrenching time. I feel almost like I knew her.

    I’m glad you have such hilarious memories to treasure and recount. I hope they are some consolation.

    Sending hugs and warm thoughts your way.

    Michelle x

  3. Olivia Mayer (@apathyincarnate) July 29, 2015 at 11:58 pm #

    What a beautiful piece about a heartbreaking loss – I am so sorry, Amy.

  4. Stephanie Rogers July 30, 2015 at 10:52 am #

    So sorry for your loss, Amy. I met Kat a few times, around the place at parties and events. She made me laugh and she rolled me a perfect cigarette, hugged me and told me to stop apologising for being a “ciggie scab” (my words).
    This is a beautiful piece of writing. Take care. xx Steph

  5. Bibi McMurray August 4, 2015 at 11:54 am #

    My heart goes out to the family and friends of Kat. I did not know her. I wish I had.. This is a beautiful piece of writing Amy and I agree that writers/creatives have a common bond that is uncommon in other sectors of the community. Big hugs to you all and hope the happy memories of Kat sustain you through your grief. xxoxx

  6. malbrown2 August 28, 2015 at 6:32 pm #

    I’m sorry. I also lost a friend who was far too young to die. I still have his last text message and read it often.

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