There are many people in life that I see every day, that I have a pleasant conversation with or say hello and move on, and realise that I don’t actually know them. The girl that I sit next to in seminars is nice, but I don’t know what she wants to be in the future. The guy I see in the flat opposite me- does he love boxing, or wrestling? Furthering on my point made on my last blog on who we are, I decided to elaborate. I believe that we are, in fact, afraid. From childhood we are brought up to be scared of being abnormal or outspoken, we are herded like sheep into liking the same music, wearing the same clothes, and everyone that tries to escape this is deemed ‘abnormal’. I went to school without telling my friends that I liked to write, or how much I loved the idea of travelling, scouring the world and trying different cuisines and walking different sands from different parts of the world. I didn’t tell them about how falling in love really made me feel, rather than “Yeah, he’s cute, it’s going well” and I realised it’s because humans have broken communication. We’re used to blunt messages on phone screens and Facebook simplified to acronyms like ‘how r u’ and ‘kl, cy l8er’. I think it’s mad. My point is- from many of my experiences as a teenager, people are embarrassed to be passionate about things. It was like an unspoken rule that when you didn’t care, you were automatically cool. I remember a girl once telling me about how she made a happy playlist on her iPod, and certain songs made her realise how warm the sun was or how elevated she felt and how her day was brightened, with great enthusiasm, only to turn red when the other girls stared at her weirdly and continuing talking about X Factor or Eastenders. I found that people keep their passions sometimes hidden within them, like a tiny secret that only they know- which is strange. Some people obviously shout about their passions from the rooftops, or take them up as careers. But there are a multitude of people that are scared of the reaction they get when they talk about how panting makes them feel- the satisfaction of blending the creamy colours together and watching them darken and adapt. Scared of how people will look at them when they explain the thrill of standing on a stage, with jittery, clammy hands and eyes on them as their heart beats fast until they finish performing, feeling an elevation. I want to tell people that I love the feeling of walking on warm sand, something strangely comforting to me, whilst looking out at the sea- one of my favourite things on earth. I have decided from now on, I am going to be open and descriptive about what I love. So what, if they don’t like reading, or writing fanfiction, or cooking? It’s your passion. It’s what makes you happy- not for other people to judge. That goes for the less conventional activities too! I am going to tell people not only what I watched last night on TV, or what I had for dinner- but something that excites me, that I want to do. Something that will make them learn a little bit more about the real me. And you should too.
Many situations will arise in your life in which you have to shortly summarise who you are. An example is the introductory ‘name games’ at school or university where you sheepishly have to say your name, where you live and something about yourself. Recently, when I was faced with such an awkward and unpleasant task, I could find anything to say. It wasn’t, or course, that I had no personality or was the human equivalent of water, but that I cannot be summarised into a sentence. And neither can you. How can I possible say that I’m a writer, a feminist, a dreamer, a wisher, a lover and a fighter? How can I express the contrasting qualities of my being- I love being strong, and independent, yet I Sometimes like being shy and innocent. Sometimes I can dominate a room with talking and telling stories and captivating people, other times I like to sit and daydream, the conversations flowing past me unnoticed. I can’t express some of the deepest philosophical thoughts that I’ve had in my life or how my heart fluttered when I fell in love or how the events in my life have changed me. I know that no one will truly ever know me as well as I know myself. Sure, they may know you’re favourite colour, or what genre films you like, but you are the only person that will ever be a constant in your life. They weren’t there when you took your first steps, had your first kiss, when you embarrassed yourself and laughed and cried and went through life. It’s extremely important to remember that everyone is a human being with a life- a past and a future, and what you see is definitely not what you get. I often wonder what people think when they see me. Sometimes we use fashion and posters and tattoos to try and express who we really are, but it’s easy to ignore that and focus on yourself. I once got in an argument with a girl and was horrible upset, until my mother reminded me that she was too. She had emotions too- it wasn’t just about me and my feelings. It’s so important in this day and age to try and be selfless- because when good things happen to you, it can change your day. Other people deserve the same. Originating back to my point on ‘who are you’ I wonder if anyone else has a problem defining who they are in simple terms? How can a few words summarize your soul, your essence, your experiences? I have come to the conclusion that it is perfectly okay that people will not know every depth of my soul. I like to keep some remains of my soul private, and I can continually change, growing day by day until the best person I can possibly be. A year ago I didn’t identify as a feminist, something which now has influenced me greatly. A year ago I didn’t know how much I loved writing, now a great passion of mine. Every day, you begin to change and evolve, so you are never really one person, just an idea that changes and grows as you continue the journey of life.
Getting deep, I realise, but I hope you followed my train of thought. If you’ve read this, thank you very much and please comment below, I’d love to know what you think. Bye!
With my uni work piling up next to me, I bravely tackled through with a stack of pizzas and energy drinks as I started to binge watch ‘The Walking Dead’. I absolutely love it- zombies man, cool. I haven’t been particularly invested in many programmes since Sherlock and Lost and finally, I have found one I adore. Although, I have to mention, I do have some slight problems with it. May contain spoilers guys. So Rick is our protagonist- a honest do-gooder with a family protect automatically taking the leadership role from experience as a cop. He is our hero. Introduction Shane, who acts as a surrogate hero for Rick, he also has led a group to survival. Although best friends, the two have many issues, including the fact Shane is banging Rick’s wife, Lori.
Now, as events transpire and Lori passes away, Rick begins to go a bit off the rails. He starts becoming absent and distant and it’s clear he can’t lead anyone. Thus, as of course a democracy wouldn’t work here, a leader needs to step up (Don’t get me started on this idea). Glenn is considered, as suddenly he has grow a moustache and got a girlfriend! But deep down, he’s still the little technological kid that we know and love and for one reason or another, can’t lead. Hershel is an old man, with a missing leg and acts as a Dumbledore/Gandalf figure (old man offering wisdom to young protagonist). Shanes dead now, so he can’t be a leader and Daryl has gone off so he can’t. Even Carl, the little boy of about 9/10?? is considered, but obviously he’s a little too young and growing a bit brutal! I watched with anticipation with each episode, before realising, is not any of these episodes is a woman considered for a leadership role. The women have some interesting traits between them- Carols transformation and motherly comforting contrasted with Michonne’s steely, fierce nature. Maggie’s gone from farmer girl to strong independent woman in just a couple of episodes! Andrea, is by far my favourite in the show. Growing stronger after the death of her sister, she decided to start learning how to use a gun and is pretty fucking badass with it. However, after she started dating the governor who is revealed to be the bad guy, she seems more annoying as she doesn’t pick a side and is clearly being blindsided by her ‘love’. However, she would make a pretty good leader. She’s kind, she knows how to talk to people and calm them down, she’s organised and has good ideas, is savvy and clever and strong. Anyway, before I go off on one, I just want to address why these woman are never considered for the leadership role for the group. Sure, they are confident, strong women but not once does any suggest that Maggie or Andrea lead. Now, I’m not saying that the Walking Dead are completely sexist and I’ll never watch the show again. But, I do hope that they will introduce a few headstrong, courageous woman. Examples include Kahlan from Legend of the Seeker, Kate from Lost, pretty much any cast member of Orange is the new black, Morgana from Merlin, Cersei and Dany (Kahleesi) from Game of thrones. If you guys have ideas on why this is, or what you think, feel free to comment below.
Whether you’re desperately trying to think of a first day to impress a crush, or if you just want an exciting change to spend time with your loved one, there are many different ideas out there! I’ve compiled a list of just a few things I think would be good as dates.
- The ‘Night in’. One of the most popular date ideas due to the lack of effort and planning. Invite the significant other over to eat pizza and watch films. However, go that extra mile by doing simple things such as cleaning your room. There’s nothing nicer than walking into my boyfriends bedroom to find freshly washed sheets, a hovered floor and a few candles or fairy-light just making it extra romantic.
- The meal and movie. I believe I have come up with the perfect solution to this very common first date. Eating a meal with someone you don’t know for a first date can be unbelievably awkward. You’re trying to enjoy your meal whilst talking or sitting in uncomfortable silence trying to think of what to say. However, if you just go to a movie, there’s not much time for talking and it doesn’t really seem like a date. However, if you combine the two, you can talk about the film during dinner if you can’t think of any other questions and use that as a basis for getting to know the other person.
- Drinks. Ah, alcohol. The best friend and worst enemy of dating. There is a thin line between a couple of drinks to relax you and lower your inhibitions, and being paralytic on the floor with the guy/girl embarrassed calling for help. I always find pubs an extremely social place to hang out, and sometimes it’s nice to have a bit of dutch courage. However, learn from my mistakes. I was so nervous about going back to my boyfriends house, that I ended up drinking so much that he had to carry me back to his whilst I was singing, yelling, dancing (all very badly). He then proceeded to check on me several times whilst I was bent over the toilet puking my guts up, eyes closed, blindly kicking thin air to try and get him out of the bathroom. Great.
- A party. Could be yours, theirs, or a friends. I’d be wary of this, because some people don’t count parties as proper dates. There’s a lot of people around and loud music and lots of drinking, but if you’re scared of being completely alone with them if it might be awkward, then this could be the date for you. You could go together or leave together for extra time with them, or just spend time with them there. It gives you a chance to meet their friends and vice versa. And, parties are the number one place where if you want to get a little ation, it’s going to happen. The hazy, smokey air filled with teenage hormones, a little bit of alcohol in your system and an empty room with just the buzz of speakers from downstairs causes a lot of smooching that may not happen if you’re sitting in a restaurant or public place. Make sure you/they are not too drunk and if it’s one of the first dates, make sure you don’t regret it if you sleep together, killing the relationship before it begins and probably getting a reputation.
- Shopping! ENTER WITH CAUTION. Shopping will most likely not be pleasant for guys. And, you don’t want to appear a stingy bastard but you don’t want to blow your entire savings in one day. I’d recommend a little market or somewhere like the lanes in Brighton- there’s a lot of cheap stuff. You could go in bookstores, discussing your favourites, and try secretly to buy her something she admired and produce it later. You could go to a nice coffee shop and people watch, or mess about trying on hats/scarves etc. Girls love being spoiled, and remember you don’t want to always give her cheap things, but thoughtful gifts are the best. Just make sure if you do this, she ain’t a golddigger.
- The ‘cooking’ date. So, maybe you don’t want to go to a restaurant? Maybe you want to stay in but still do something fun? Cooking is an extremely good way to get close to the other person. You have to work as a team to produce something delicious or hilarious. If it’s December, a gingerbread house would be lovely. The middle of summer, making cocktails and a simple dinner would suffice. Cooking gives you a chance to play around, to laugh when he’s put too much water in the mix or to smear a dusting of flour on her nose. If you’re getting to know each other it’s very relaxed and fun and if you’re a couple it’s the same, and you get extra bonding time. You could even make it a regular thing, swapping houses and recipes each time.
- London/Major city. Living half an hour away from London, a very fun date is to just go out and explore. You can go on a bar crawl, or go to the embankment, see all the different acts and costumes of the workers. You can go see Big ben, or the London Eyes or even go on it! London/ major cities are fun, bustling places that will create a really happy environment for the couple of you to be in. I went on a date there starting off with drinks, burritos from a little stall then sitting in the park reading to each other. It was a extremely nice day.
- Picnic. Something so simple yet elegant. And there’s several way to make an ordinary picnic special. Guys, listen up. Firstly, pick a day that’s not raining. Even if its cold, you can bundle up in coats, but if it’s raining, just no. It won’t be like a romantic film, it will be miserable and muddy. First, pick the place. Try and get a nice park that’s not filled with a bunch of chavs drinking lambrini and smoking weed, it really ruins the effect. Lay out a blanket so she doesn’t ruin her outfit that I’m sure she will have spent hours picking out. You get extra points if you know some of her favourite foods (easy to ask in normal conversations) because she will be so delighted you remembered. Get a selection of little sweet treats, cute sandwiches and sweets, and beverages for both of you. From little cartons of orange juice to a nice bottle of wine, picnics are perfect. You will get extra, extra, extra brownie points if you do it at sunset and have fairy lights(a recurring item that girls love) wrapped round a tree and soft, romantic music playing.
- The Romantic scenery. My boyfriend and I decided to go to Seaford, which is a lovely little place filled with cliffs overlooking the sea and beautiful beaches. We had quite a hike to get up there so it’s more of a couples date rather than a first date (you don’t want to see each other panting, sweating and red outside of the bedroom in natural light- it’s not pretty). As we’re both smokers, it was a little hard but let me tell you, it was worth it. Even in December, the sea was a really calming place to be with someone you love, and sitting on a cliff surrounded by nature is indescribably, really. It’s really an unforgettable date, so if it is a first date and you really want to impress her, I’d suggest something outside that looks stunning. Even a hill that has a beautiful sunset will do. Just make sure it’s not too remote for a first date or she may think you’re going to kill her.
Anyway, that’s nine ideas of different dates. Let me know your favourites, your experiences or even a few more ideas, I’m happy to hear them! Good luck dating! x
So summer has flown by and autumn is finally here. At first, I was a tad worried about writing this post just in case I’d be stereotyped as a typical ‘white girl with a fondness for Pumpkin spiced lattes in Starbucks and crunching her way through the leaves’ but a) I actually prefer tucked away cafes that aren’t unethical and eco-ignorant. B) Yes, I do love the sound of crunching my way through dead leaves (slightly morbid, if you think about it) but there is a childish pleasure in doing that. Anyway, I thought I’d list some favourite of my things about autumn, or THIS autumn in particular.
With the weather getting colder, and people getting lazy in the cold weather, I get to spend more time indoors reading. I can set up the typical ‘winter’ scene by setting a fire, curling up in an armchair in a blanket with a cup of hot cocoa and just read. Unfortunately as I am still at uni at the moment it’s more like being cramped in my tiny, messy room on my bed that is basically just a bunch of springs and a cover, I have to hurry to finish a book a week in time for my lectures. Still, I get to read new books. Currently I’m tackling Conrad’s ‘Heart of Darkness’ along with ‘The turn of the Screw’.
Again, as I have more time, I can watch more TV shows. There is some part of shame as an English Lit student loving TV shows just as much as books but after watching Orphan Black, Misfits and re-watching all 3 seasons of Sherlock I can’t complain. If anyone has any interesting shows to recommend I would be extremely happy.
The third point is a recent change in my life in which I have moved from home to Brighton. Brighton is everything I thought it was going to be. It has the hustle and bustle of London without the stress, it’s an extremely diverse culture and even the buildings are full of life and colour. The graffiti isn’t just ‘tags’ of peoples names, it’s art. I will probably be doing a more in detail blog about my adventures in Brighton but it has definitely made my autumn much more enjoyable as I go down the lanes and into little bookstores and cafes and walk along the streets wrapped up in my winter outfits and looking at everything that’s for sale and everyone that’s selling it. Brighton rocks. And yeah, pretty much everyone comes down here for the summer, but there’s something calmingly beautiful yet strangely odd about the beach in winter.
Fashion. I both love and hate fashion in autumn. Because of how many damn layers you have to put on it’s pretty much impossible to match anything. However, I get to wear my huge range of chunky jumpers and woolly socks which I adore. I get to wear brown lipstick and bundle on scarves and hats which make me feel wrapped up in cotton wool. So in fashion, my favourite outfit would have to be my extremely furry multi-coloured jumper with at least two pairs of leggings when its cold, a nice hat and scarf set and red lipstick and nails. There’s something superficial yet exciting about planning your outfit to the weather, or season, But I enjoy it so I take no shame.
Journals. I recently book a new journal this autumn and I’m really exciting to begin sketching, writing and drawing in it. The first blank page is always a bit startling and every year I worry about ruining that first page with awful, childish doodles and terrible drawing but this year I am determined to create a journal full of colour, excitement that I look forward to documenting pieces of my day in.
Fudge. After my partner and I searching high and low for a amazing, mysterious fudge shop, we finally found it a couple of minute before closing. Upon entering, there were lines and lines of fuge stacked up, of every flavour you could possible imagine. To the sides, jars of sweets bursting full of colour lined upon on the wall, and the floor was stacked of glass counters filled with chocolate treats. Now I have never been a big lover of Fudge. As a chocoholic, I would eat it, however I did not have a particular fondness for it. However, after getting 300kg worth of chocolate fudge, I fell in love. It was creamy, rich, smooth, gooey yet firm, the chocolate flavour completely encasing your tongue with its delightful wickedness. And yes, I ate it all that day. And I think it’s safe to say I will be returning to that shop. Maybe next time I’ll try to chocolate orange fudge.
Croissants. Firstly, it is important to establish I am not a morning person. My perfect day would be a very long lie in till about 12 in the afternoon. So when I’m forced to wake as 7 in the morning it is extremely painful for me and having gone a sleep only a few hours before I often feel like death. This results in a permanent sort of queasiness or inability to eat till about 11 o clock. However, after discovering Tesco’s cheap version of croissants, as a poor uni student I leapt onto them. And I have to say they’ve paid off extremely well. After being heated in the microwave for a few second they are delightfully fluffy and comforting yet quite filling., and it is this reason why I chose to add them to my autumn favourite list.
S there are a few things that I have enjoyed this autumn so far, please let me know what you think of your own autumn favourites, as I’d be delighted to hear.
Fairy tales have been told for thousands of years, we tell them to our children as we tuck them in at night. We recite them as teenage play and discuss the psychoanalytical side as adults.
Throughout our lives, Fairy tales are prominent. In my opinion, there’s something inexplicable mysteries and magical about them, unlike other stories. As a child, I wanted to wear the infamous cape of ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ and see the house made out of sweets and chocolate from Hansel and Gretel. The vivid imagery detailing the tower from which long flowing hair poured down, the countless evil witches and stepmothers and good fairy godmothers and heroines.
As an English Lit student, the first part of my course allows me to look into Fairy tales from a socio-political and analytical side. I’ve learnt that Red Riding Hood is believed to have medieval Italian roots in which the girl commits cannibalism, and the story is more of a celebration of female wit and cunning before changing- as society becomes more patriarchal, suddenly it is the girls fault for being gullible and naïve. Perrault’s version turns the narrative into a moral in which ladies should learn from. The brothers Grimm put their graphic twist on it. And so forth the story becomes different, changing and adapting to fit our purposes needs, like all fairy tales.
I watch the TV show ‘once upon a time’ which is based on Fairy tale characters, and is a interesting yet admittedly cliché take on them. The film industry recycles fairy tales constantly – one example is the fairly new ‘Snow white and the Huntsman and the upcoming ‘Into the Woods’ released on Christmas day (which I am extremely excited about).
Fairy tales have always interested me. I have based many art designs and drawings and stories on them, and I will never tire of their magical comfort. And I will definitely be reading many of them to my children in the future.
The most common reaction I get when I mention the fact that I love the character Cersei Lannister from popular novel and tv show ‘Game of thrones’ is probably shock and a little bit of confusion. I will try and to explain why I love such an unlikeable character. Ever since I was little, I loved shows such as Xena, Buffy, legend of the seeker and Merlin. My main reason for this is because of the strong female characters presented. And Cersei is no different. A little context if you don’t know about this character- Cersei is the eldest child of Tywin Lannister. Her mother died when she was 8 due to the birth of Tyrion, leading to a hatred of her younger brother. Her twin (and lover) is Jamie Lannister. As children they were extremely close and Cersei has strong beliefs that they belong together, something like two sides of the same coin. Infatuated with Prince Rhaegar as a child, he refused her fathers offer for Cerseis hand, and she later married King Robert, becoming Queen (every girls little dream). However, on their wedding night, he called her Lyanna (a woman that he is in love with and still mourning for). Cersei bore three children to Jaime- Joffrey (the evil little shit that everyone hates) Myrcella and Tommen. She takes action into helping the King to his death, and then denounces Eddard Stark, leading to his death too. he is need Queen Regent and take charge of Joffreys small council. She uses her power wisely but can get blinded by emotion. For me, Cersei is a beacon of strength and courage. Sure, she’s an incestuous bitch that has caused a lot of trouble. But I think she’s got more balls than a lot of the male figures in the show and book. She’s wise, loves her children and does everything to protect her family and herself, even murder or crippling a ten year old child- though technically, she didn’t agree with as it was Jaime, which she ‘had a go’ at him for. But there are so many layers to her character. She’s a queen. She’s a mother. She’s desperately in love with someone who she can’t be with. She was trapped in a marriage with a man who was in love with a dead woman, to the point of saying her name while they slept together on her wedding night. Being brought up by Tywin Lannister must’ve been hard, but she gained a lot of cunning and wisdom. She uses her weakness and makes herself stronger, realising that strength and power is everything that she needs. She Demonstrates to Littlefinger that ‘Power is power’ unleashing the sassy ‘I-can-do-what-I-want’ attitude that everyone’s so fond of. ‘The more people you love, the weaker you are’ She tells Sansa stark to love fewer people, speaking from experience. She’s not a complete ice queen. We’ve seen her break down, cry and scream. And it’s this emotion which makes me love her so much. She’s not a complete coldblooded killer or twisted maniac. She accepts the fact she has a woman’s body and hates that it makes her weak. She despises the fact that she is not taken as seriously as her brothers, but she does have weapons (her tears and ‘what’s between her thighs’ as she claims) and she uses them successfully. I suppose the modern day equivalent of Cersei would be a strong business woman, completely career driven not afraid to take what she wants. Not to mention she loves wine as much as I do. And Lena Headey is pretty much a goddess. That’s pretty much it for my ramblings on fictional characters for today. “When you play the Game of Throne, you win or you die. There is no middle ground”