Sunday, 20 September 2015

blogger interview tag

it me again! I'm currently in deep relaxation at home, having just returned from bestival on the Isle of Wight. it was absolutely incredible (I SAW MISSY ELLIOT. IN THE FLESH. LIVE. MOVING. SHES WAS ELECTRIFYING) and exhausting and wonderful. I'm normally not a very adventurous person and i hate going outside of my normal routine and tents and not having access to a shower so I'm a) glad i coped and b) slightly shocked i enjoyed myself. I might do a proper post about it at a later date, when i have the disposables developed from there (I took a single picture on my phone of charlie xcx, and a very shaky video of duran duran to show my mum).

anyway. i'm back home now. back to playing endless sporcle quizzes (i can name all the US states and countries of asia and africa), dodgy baking experiments and watching the evening news from under a blanket.

the main point of this post is that i got tagged in the blogger interview tag by victory (thank your amazing person) a bit ago so i feel i should do this. also i find it easier to blog when i have a prompt/im an egomaniac who loves being asked questions about myself.

What advice would you give to a blogger just starting out?
(sidenote: i find it honestly weird to refer to myself as a 'blogger'. it sounds too much like do this for a job or some shit. i prefer the term  'online oversharer' but never mind.) Honestly, find something you want to talk about it, and just talk about it. Don't feel pressured to keep to a schedule, or have an overarching theme to your posts (I've had this one for over 2 years and I've got no idea what its about lmao). Use your blog as a way to talk about your feelings, opinions, explore your confusion or boredom. Also it's perfectly normal to feel murderously embarrassed by your old posts, and its up to you whether you want to delete them or leave them as evidence of your 'former self'. Also everyone on here is friendly, and leaves wonderful comments on all your rambling shit. Don't be shy. 

What would be your dream campaign?
I don't... really understand this question? at all? so I'm going to say *nonchalantly tosses hair* i don't know.

Do you have a plan for your blog?
Not a coherent one. I'd like to post more, maybe share some more stuff I've created outside of this (/actually create something outside of this first lol) but mostly just to keep going. I know I want to communicate with more people on here as well, make more friendships and connections. I feel like I've fallen out of that scene a bit as of late but i really want to get back into it because you're all wonderful and creative and inspiring.

What do you think about rankings?
Uh, not sure. Like obviously popularity doesn't denote quality, and everyone just reads what they wants to read don't they? I find of all online spaces the blog world isn't really too affected by rankings or trying to aggressively get more followers, but maybe I'm not sufficiently at the centre of all this to be able to tell. also are there actually official blog rankings? is this a big thing? are these all really stupid questions?

ok now i have to tag people:

Emma at blog
/also anyone else who happens to fancy doing this

aand thats it for this uncharacteristically short post! i am going back to university in a few weeks so i will maybe, probably not post for a while, because i will (/might) be too busy livin' man. In the meantime, I've been caught up in a flurry of seeing people before we all go back, and wondering what the hell I've achieved since I came home in June.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

starting and not finishing

I really had intended to blog more over this holiday but every time I start, or every time I actually get quite close to finishing a post, I stop short of completely polishing it and it sits neglected in my drafts for a few weeks. So I go back to it several times, revising it and sometimes taking out parts which are now irrelevant, sometimes keeping them because i like how i expressed them, or because i feel like they're important. so this post is essentially an amalgamation of my failed attempts to post, me trying to make something coherent out of all the links, and pieces of writing i had piled up in a draft post.

The majority of this particular post started in a burst of energy, which compelled me to write all the things which had happened to me, because they were *real events*. nothing life changing, but events and occupations which helped, and are still helping me feel like i'm moving along. so i divided these recent happenings into phases, to set them out clearly.

phase 1 - birthday, terrible holiday

i turned 19 on the 29th of july. not a significant age at all, and a not particularly exiting day to go with it. i was on holiday at the time in a very remote part of the country, which is a lovely place to visit when it's sunny and you can spend all day on the beach or wandering around the weird little towns, but it rained almost non stop for the entire time i was there. thus i spent a frustrating week in a dark little cottage, with no wifi, doing endless jigsaw puzzles. my birthday had all the basic celebrations, cake and gifts, and i went out for dinner, but i couldn't escape the horrible boredom which had seeped into the whole holiday.

(ok so the first evening we got there it was sunny but cold and we went to the beach and it was pretty magical and dramatic. i was especially pleased i managed to capture the 3 people silhouetted like that against the sky)

phase 2 - useless sack'o'flesh

as soon as i returned from holiday, my body essentially turned on itself. i wrote this, as i was lying in bed feeling frustrated and sick.
"i am currently sitting upright in bed, surrounded by tissues and various headache medications because guess who just remembered hay fever was a thing! just another thing to add to the vision in my eyes deteriorating even further, bad sunburn and my dead frizzy hair destroying every brush which attempts to go near it and refusing to look like anything other than greasy straw. my body feels like an uncooperative, clumsy, self destructive lump, which can neither move around without getting tired quickly nor sit still without fidgeting. thus i have spent the past week or so lying  under a duvet, keeping myself plugged into endless entertainment in an attempt to stop myself from feeling horrible"

one of the ways i distracted myself during this time was by going on virtual google street view tours maybe the saddest sentence i've ever, ever typed, but i hate travelling so this is probably the only way i'll ever see any of this stuff.
ushiku daibutsu

i don't know how this happens, but google street view has so many weird glitches where bits of people and landscapes go missing
the divine lorraine hotel, which has a fascinating, weird history
phase 3 - productivity etc. (i.e. the present day)

once i managed to drag myself out of my mental hell hole, two things happened: one, i managed to get a part time job working in a library, and two, i remembered the long list of dissertation reading i had yet to make any real impact on. surprisingly, my body decided to step up to these challenges. i have energy to plan my days, completing tasks which had been sitting at the back of my mind for months (i.e. finally replacing my poor, dear, sickly phone, getting a desk which fits in my current room, reorganising the cardboard boxes of junk under my bed). admittedly, the dissertation ideas are still no more focused than 'something about satan idk' but i'm getting there. the library job is fun, interesting and peaceful, and most of all gives me something purposeful to do, so when it comes to it, i truly feel like i deserve the time i spend lying on the sofa in my pyjamas.

i also recently finished the notebook i was using as a journal. maybe this doesn't seem significant but i am notoriously bad at finishing notebooks (is this a theme in this post? i believe it is) and this is the second time i've ever done it (the first was when i was 12 and i kept a daily diary in a 'series of unfortunate events' diary, which i still have. this was an anomaly). the style/quality of self expression (and actually my scanner lmao) is incredibly patchy but i'm pleased with it.

i started this post from the viewpoint of being only halfway through summer, so it feels strange reading it back, trying to incorporate the bits and pieces which were at the front of my mind several weeks ago with how i feel now. i intended to have more posts during summer because its such a h u g e expanse of time (like over 3 months for me) all condensed into this one state of in between-ness. it would have been nice to break it up more, and i like complaining about summer, and trying to talk about ways of coping with it (side note: this, this and this have all basically propped me up for the past months). anyway, time passes quickly.

I'm not sure how to end this post, so here are the links and pictures i found in rattling around in this draft, and can't/am too lazy to find any way of linking to anything else but i want to include anyway. i'm going back to university soon and can't wait. i'm living in a new house, with people who i will hopefully have more in common with than the vegan christians who populated my floor last year, and i can finally get back to having my own space and see everyone i couldn't get to over the holidays.


(screenshots from the x files episode 'the post modern prometheus', which despite being one of the most nonsensical episode, has possibly the best general aesthetic)

i'm only just discovering the good places to go in the neighbourhood i have been living in for over a year now. so i spend more time going on walks now, especially at dusk when everything is just getting empty and dark.

Friday, 10 July 2015

summer dread, in list form

it's summer!!! i've had a heat induced headache non stop for the past few days!!! I didn't know the backs of my knees could sweat!!!
well actually, the relentless heat is taking on/off breaks, giving me a chance to peel myself from the sofa, get stuff done and even treat myself to a leggings-and-jumper-dress-in-bed day, with my window open so i can hear the rain, with my brain cooled down from its melted stupor so I am in a position to assemble my thoughts on here. in an incoherent fashion. i haven't written anything, in any form, that I've lost the ability to properly articulate, or structure my ideas. I have lists, on my wall, in my diary, of tasks of varying importance ('buy a dressing gown' to 'get another job') which seems to suit my mindset at the moment. giving myself a series of easily completable, menial tasks, rather than long term goals. i put off all thoughts of 'improving myself' for the time being because it made me stressed, adding to the already suffocating set of non-self-imposed responsibilities. so I'm letting myself kick back, eat tins of mints, watch portlandia and read listicles. 

I came home on the 20th of June, after a week of celebrations, which were good, although a complete break from my usual life routine and so also infinitely stressful. i haven't really been particularly busy since then. i find the relentlessly hot and infinite prospect of summer daunting and depressing, all these weeks for me to feel bad about not enjoying the sun and the time off when really I just want October to come around again, so i can start wearing coats and buying stationary. Despite, or maybe because of, this boredom i can't concentrate on anything for more than 15 minutes. I can't even bring myself to watch films, listen to music, read, passive tasks which i told myself i would be able to enrich my summer by doing if i couldn't bring myself to be active. but i've sunk to such a low depth of bored laziness which means i have to be constantly feeding my mind non engaging information; endlessly scrolling through social media, playing mindless iPhone games.

anyway. in between the days where it was too warm to do anything apart from eat ice cubes and watch tv in the basement, i have managed to achieve some stuff. primarily i went to the alexander mcqueen exhibition a few weeks ago. I would advise anyone who can get there to go (apparently it's opening by night now! i wish i could go again in the dark), even if you aren't into fashion in the slightest because it is truly magical. it had almost every important mcqueen related item. the kate moss hologram (my personal favourite), the reptile dresses from his final collection, the robot spray painted white dress revolving in the middle of the largest room, the armadillo shoes. also the exhibition is curated in such a way which reflects mcqueen's own extravagant presentation, showcased in his runways, from the enormous 'cabinet of curiosities', a huge room filled to the ceiling with designs and screens playing his shows, a wood panelled room with the widows of culloden dresses, and the huge gilt mirrors behind his darker designs. I didn't entirely follow how the collection was organised and ordered (around themes in his work I think?), but the beauty of mcqueen's designs, and the sheer quantity of important pieces in the collection were enough for it to be an incredible experience. I felt really sad to leave, because however long i spent in there i don't think i would have felt was long enough. however, as a small comfort, in my post-viewing browsing i found that vogue has a photo gallery of pretty much every bit of the exhibition, which was a small comfort. 
it brought up all the 'beauty is terror' concepts as well which i enjoy. the idea that something really beautiful is something you can't stop staring at, that element of fear, danger, awe which elevates something above being just 'pretty', and keeps you transfixed.

apart from that, i fell my state of mind can best be expressed through things i have been reading and taking pictures of. my thoughts and feelings are v empty, aside from the endless internet articles i have been reading, which i haven't been able to form opinions, or an overriding narrative on so here they are ->
  • a thing i felt i sort of a bit related to, in a way
  • rose mcgowan. still amazing. has no time for adam sandler's shit, even when it gets her fired from her agent. also has directed a sinister, bubblegum-hued short film. 

i'm pretty sure this post has gaps in it, but if i recorded every single important thing which happened to me recently it would be unreadably long, and I'm tired. so here are a few pretty images my poor, dying phone managed to capture in reasonable quality.



Saturday, 23 May 2015

pre exams exhaustion and limitations

I've realised why I don't post on here as much as I'd like to, and why I get frustrated about it. I have all these ideas in my head which I really like, and I want to carry out. But I hate the vulnerability of putting care and enthusiasm into something, nurturing it, then leaving it to the possibility of being torn apart and disliked by other people, even myself, pre-emptively cancelling out my own future embarrassment by something I once did. I'm trying to work my way out of it. I stop myself every time I find myself cringing at someone else's pursuit of their passion, and have tried to reflect their enthusiasm in the things I enjoy doing.

This song came on while I was sat on the train back to university, and in combination with the peaceful fields going past the window it made me realise just how tired I was.  Not just the sleep deprivation, but the exertion of constant engagement, with people, books, plans for the summer, current affairs, music, all finally hit me as I was sat watching the fields go past the window. The past three days had been relentlessly busy, cramming my work around a job trial, visiting family and the endless travelling to and fro which came with both, and as I was on my way home I felt totally sick of everything. At a point in the year when I have so many unavoidable responsibilities, I was suddenly overwhelmed by the desire to be entirely still and ignore everything. To curl up somewhere with nothing to distract me or remind me of the things I should be thinking about. I've lost interest in having opinions or coming across as clever, or trying to make other people like me. I want to be surrounded by aimless, comforting things. I want to be disengaged, silent, weak and passive. 

Maybe one of my favourite photos I've taken on my phone. I was sat next to a sports field waiting for my mum to pick me up and the sky looked huge and dramatic 

In terms of milestones, I had a technically major one a few weeks back when I managed to drag myself out a mental hole and vote for the first time ever in the general election which felt really good until the results came out and it turns out we're going to be run by empathy-less reptiles for 5 more years.

*pre-voting apathy panic*
I really appreciate having read this article, which made me think about all the things we pour into our appearance and twisting them around, at a point when I'm so focused on my brain and the information inside it that I get quite severely dissociated from my body. Experimenting and examining my physical appearance is an effective work break, I've discovered. Even if I'm just going out to buy milk I put on makeup, decide on an outfit, and concentrate on how I present myself. It feels invigorating, and it keeps me occupied and engaged with something other than dusty history facts and abstract arguments. 

My exams are in just over a week's time. I'm not sure how seriously I'm meant to take them. I don't think they count for anything this year but I don't particularly want to get thrown out before next year either. I'm absolutely dreading them, but focusing on the time afterwards. I get about five days of doing absolutely nothing, apart from maybe re-dying my hair, watching tv. After that, we have the end of year celebrations balls, which I ate rice for three weeks to save enough to buy tickets for, and for which I bought outfits which I have spent the past month gliding around in my room in. So I'm concentrating on what is beyond the exams to try and get myself through them, remembering the wise words of the log lady:

I feel like there are more things I want to say in this post, but I'm tired and this revision break has already been extravagant. I hope you're all ok. If you're doing exams; good luck! If you've finished them, I hope they went well, and whatever happens remember they absolutely are not a reflection of your worth as a human being.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

home etc.

I got back home from easter about two weeks ago. I had forgotten many things about home. How small my room is. I spent a good 2 hours rearranging my room so I could fit all my stuff in it. What it's like being directly surrounded by people who know and care about you (a mutual pleasant avoidance now exists between me and my corridor neighbours, occasionally broken by unintentional kitchen/doorway encounters). How small and uninteresting my home town is. How it is to not live within a 2 minute radius of my closest friends, and not see them everyday. 

I have so far managed to mask the overwhelming feeling of 'what the hell am I meant to do here??' by choosing a bizarre and uncharacteristic kind of domesticity as my useful-but-not-really-useful activity to ignore revision for. Tidying, baking and sewing make me feel in control when everything else seems stale, confusing and frustratingly out of my control. 

***things I learnt from making way too many cakes***
crushed shreddies are not a suitable substitute for oats
the weird dark sugar you found in the cupboard makes everything taste of treacle
raw cake batter isn't dangerous/inadvisable to eat I should know I've basically eaten nothing else and so far haven't been ill..... (***frantically touches wood***)
no one ever. ever. ever doesn't appreciate the availability of biscuits. even if they're a bit burnt and you couldn't find all the ingredients. side note: this also sort of backfires and you often don't get to eat any yourself 
baking is kind of time consuming, i.e. a good way to spend the dead and unproductive hours between lunch and 4pm

*takes off incompetent-50s-housewife apron*

Sadly I haven't been able to put off the exam preparation. It's such a drag though because it doesn't even involve doing something new. You have to go back over everything you've done so far, which definitely feels counter progressive, and incredibly disheartening especially when you can't even remember all of it. 

another thing I've been cultivating : spotify playlisting. I find it difficult trying to keep track of all the music I currently like because it switches so often, but there are also songs which I will listen to again and again. anyway. here is the music I've been listening to over the easter break. Largely a taxonomy of girl band/female orientated music throughout the ages but also other good stuff. New Kendrick Lamar, Earl Sweatshirt, Kanye etc.
(also, you don't have to be impressed that my html-ignorant self managed to eMBED A SPOTIFY PLAYLIST ON MY BLOG but uh, whatever. i'm cool)

also this song which has been stuck in my head for the past weeks because a) its so damn catchy and cute but also a bit weird and b) I've had to listen to it repeatedly because QT has done no other music???? this is a very real problem.

Some visual things I've purposefully had lying around my desktop to pick me up when I've been feeling crushed and gloomy, and when revising has been making me feel like there is nothing else in the world but FACTS and DATES and VERB CONJUGATIONS

some general good advice from teen vogue on how to get over feeling burnt out

this picture made me laugh hysterically  for about 3 minutes when I first saw it. I don't really know why, but I bring it up periodically while I'm working to keep my spirits up 

some of my favourite song lyrics this month to help keep my emotions circulating

Pictures from my most recent trip to London, which included my first ever trip to the natural history museum because apparently most people go there at some point in their childhood and I never had, and also stuffed animals are fascinating. Me and my friend also spent hours in the V&A. I never realised how huge it was before, or that the entire top floor is dedicated to ceramics. 

Anyway. I've only got a week left now until I go back, and my friends are finally back so I can keep myself busy trying to see all of them/reorganising my life at home before I leave again. This is good. I really hate waiting around. 

Saturday, 14 March 2015

re-resolutioning a.k.a. still not doing anything of interest but hoping to soon

There are 1000 reasons I could give for not having posted on here recently, such as the trustworthy 'I've been really busy' (true, but also not busy enough to neglect this quite so badly) or 'I've been working on something really great' (I haven't. I've been trying every single variety of sainsburys cookies and watching 10 episodes of the office per day) or I could just not mention it because hey! this is my blog, and I've gone for longer without writing anything on here before. also it annoys me that I start every single post with an apology for infrequency/over frequency of posts.
I feel compelled to say something now though because this time, the reason that I haven't posted on here in a long time is that I have had absolutely nothing I want to write about. I'm not just being lazy, or feeling unable to cope with blogger's non-functioning picture arranging, I have not once in the past 2 months had a thought I wanted to share on here. Maybe I'm sharing more of this stuff with people in real life but I'm not entirely sure I am. Maybe I'm sick of writing. I write a full essay each week, researching for it, shaping information into arguments, pulling something interesting apart until it isn't so I can coldly analyse its separate parts before tomorrow evening. To do so for fun now, when I could instead be sleeping, or watching tv or seeing my friends seems ludicrous. 

(side note: term has finally finished now. hence the sudden availability for recreational scribblings)

It's at that point in the year now where the novelty of the university experience has worn off. I skip my lectures now because I'm bored of the walk there and back and its cold and I don't want to get out of my pyjamas. I plan my reading around having to drag myself to as few libraries as possible (I love libraries, but when I have to spend hours going there, negotiating the confusing classifying system only to have to haul several enormous dull volumes back to my room they lose their attraction). I put as little effort into my work as I can get away with because by now, I don't care if it isn't great or incredible or impressive, I care that it's acceptable and no one will be 'concerned about my performance' *shudders*. I find it impossible to even appreciate the beauty of the city and its buildings because I have walked through them almost every single day now for the past few months and all I notice are the tourists and bikes blocking the pavements.

I found myself subconsciously making some (alarmingly negative) resolutions halfway through this term:
1. stop going to clubs. you hate them. you've never ever enjoyed a night out, and at this stage you're probably never going to meet your soulmates in a room-shaped armpit you paid £5 to enter. let's face it, you only really do it for the chips on the way back.
2. stop spending time with people who have never paid you any attention in the vain hope that they suddenly might start finding you interesting. If they've never made an effort to talk to you, why should you?
3. stop caring what other people think. they don't care that much, so just do what you want. 
4. you have enough friends, stop grasping for more. be more discerning. the people you think are cool from a distance are rarely as neat when you get to know them.
5. reorganise your time and pastimes. go to the museums and charity shops. Give up on all the things you feel you ought to do but actually gain nothing from. Only you know how to best spend your time.
6.  trust your instincts. you are right more than you think.

tl;dr - do you on your own terms

I have been watching a lot of films in between huge bowls of pasta. Mostly faintly disturbing:
se7en - intriguing biblical undertones, Kevin Spacey
nymphomaniac vol. II - I saw part I and thought I should finish it. My face took a while to unfurrow after it ended.
twin peaks: fire walk with me - much, much, much more shocking in terms of content than the tv series. and more sheryl lee which is absolutely no bad thing.
lost highway - i only figured out how all the characters connected about 2 hours after I finished it. rammstein and someone's head gets impaled on a table corner

Also: when I said I hadn't felt compelled to share anything on here that was a teeny tiny lie. I found these videos in a semi-abandoned draft which I thought were cool/fun/catchy/entertaining

(Vintage David Lynch directed playstation 2 commercials)

(Allie X)

Anyway! Easter is now. Revising and trying to earn money are very much around the corner = more stuff to put off = predicted sudden increased interest in blogging. watch this space. 

Saturday, 3 January 2015

new year, new choice of typeface (and not a lot else)

2014 was, by default, always going to be at least mediocre owing to my car-crash of a 2013 which probably could not have been worse. it wasn't much more than that though. it was a year where things happened, important but dull things which needed to happen at some point, i.e. exams, university applications, reorganising myself, mentally and physically. a transition, experimentation year (as i correctly identified in my 2013 review post. go me). there were some not so pleasant revelations about myself, things about myself that i wanted to change and improve, formulating more clearly what i wanted for myself. i realised the things i want take hard work, are sometimes awkward to make happen, and inevitably involve some kind of conflict. 

it is with this perhaps misleadingly positive mindset that i approach 2015. i am determined to make things happen this year, more so than normal. although tbh i can never remember to what extent i feel like this at the beginning of every year, probably just as i feel now. ah well. i will continue under the delusion that this determination is unprecedented so that maybe this will be the Year of Improvement and Success

  • get a job ffs
  • better posture, more confidence, fake it til you make it
  • keep up journal, draw and write more
  • work hard for exams (sadly necessary)
  • more honesty, selective vulnerability?
  • start dying/cutting own hair
  • put yourself forward for more stuff - auditions, castings, applications
  • act, speak like you know you're interesting - be better company
  • speak up, stop mumbling
  • spend less time feeling sorry for yourself, making excuses. get stuff done.

went for a walk in a forest. it was freezing, but so so sunny, and completely blissfully silent. for a split second, my dog looked photogenic and i managed to get a picture before he ran after a squirrel

a v bad quality picture of my favourite bit of my room - inspiration pictures, hair ties, favourite necklace, and yeah, a framed postcard of jean paul gaultier.

exploring my town, i found the cemetery behind my house which has exceptional views over the rest of the town. had a very beautiful walk just before it shut and took 100000 pictures most of which turned out horribly blurry but here are some nice ones

some songs to match my hopeful-for-the-new-year mood/general music i like currently. i hope all you are having a nice january and feeling good about 2015 xoxo