'orrible yet optimistic .

My photo
I don't mind if you despise this blog,yes it's great if you enjoy it, but rather selfishly, it's for me.It's oddly comforting knowing that my little opinion is floating around in cybersapce and will always be here.

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Silent night, Holy Skype.

This Christmas was the first ever Christmas that my sister and I slept past 8am . We woke at a gasp inducing 10:30am which would have been unheard of a few years ago. I remember so clearly at getting genuinely agitated and annoyed that my older brother had slept a moment past 9am and forcing him out of bed, accusing him of wasting a precious hour of Christmas. It just goes to show what getting older does to you I suppose, I would never have dreamed of sleeping past 9am if my Grandmother would've been with us this year but she is with her sister (my great aunt) .The hours have slowly creeped up and the Christmas spirit has hastily seeped out! For the first time ever there was no excitement, not one tiny butterflies flutter in my stomach, not one ounce of spark in my weary eyes. I dread to think of myself as this shallow but it may have purely been down to the fact that I knew every single gift with my name on it under the withering tree, but like I said I'd hate to think of myself as that shallow so I'll settle with my excuse being a combination of the absence of any family elders and generally growing up.

Once the gathering of gift giving was over time ticked by tediously, we received a few phone calls from family dotted about the country but even they sounded less cheery than usual. The only thing we did which was remotely like a ritual was the Christmas lunch, everything else seemed very half-hearted, unplanned almost. Well my Mum did say to me that morning " what shall we do then" it was the first time I realised that our input was actually valued , we normally just follow the routine, but with no guests there was no routine. I was so thankful when my sister set up Skype on her laptop. I sound sad but let me explain. My Mums brother moved to Australia about 30 years ago and he has only seen us twice since we've graced this planet. If the time difference isn't tricky enough,my mum and uncle are both deaf aswell which doesn't help a great deal when it comes to keeping in touch, a simple phone call could take upto twice as long going through Typetalk, especially on Christmas day.

For the first time in 8 years we were able to see my uncle and he was able to see us. The last time he saw us in the flesh was when we were 10 years old and now we're nearly 18 so I think you could say we changed in the most drastic way you ever do in your life(I'm surprised that he didn't mistake me for my brother, with my new short barnett!).Astonishingly he was able to distinguish between my sister and I , as if he'd seen us everyday for the past year. My mum and uncle we able to sign to each other and the webcam managed to pick it up well, normally there are all sorts of problems with the difference in bandwidth and the quality of the video, but no this was perfect. We all gathered around the laptop like you see on those infernal adverts, but it's just like that, I wanted to cry. Although we were thousands and thousands of miles away, we'd never felt so close. It's moments like this where I push my hang ups about technology to one side and truly embrace the wanders it can do, my main question was why didn't we do it before? but it was Christmas day and I certainly won't be forgetting that first Skype experience anytime soon.

Sunday, 19 December 2010

Warning: some photo viewers may find the content of this post offensive.

''Don't forget to bring the camera'' is a far too familiar phrase I'm hearing in this camera crazy sub-culture of snap happy teens. It suddenly hit me like a giant snow ball to the face when I went for a jog in this foggy weather. I was happily jogging along when I noticed a perfect photo opportunity .One of those rare moments in the evening when the sky blends into a multitude of colour and the contrast of the beaming white blanket of snow catches all the colour. There was only one issue;  I hadn't robbed my sisters camera so couldn't get the snap. It was at that moment that I realised I have been completely and utterly sucked into this new camera craze,It wasn't that I wanted to email the picture to my family in Australia whose skyline couldn't look anymore different at the moment, the saddest thing is, I just wanted to whack it on Facebook. I've always enjoyed taking photos but with Facebook and other social networking sites we have the ability to showcase our photos more than ever (whether people really take an interest in them or not) and it appears that everyone has suddenly taken a huge interest in photography. With albums named 'seasons may change' bursting with scenic snaps it seems that everyone has access to the top cameras and everyone is learning to take some top quality pictures. But does this mean the death of the photographer? If more cameras and photography courses are available to everyone surely there will be no need for professional photographers?

With the birth and growth of digital cameras in the last decade it seems all that photos have become is a click on a computer screen. My dad got out all of his photos a few weeks ago there were only about 50 or so of his entire childhood, teenage years and the  majority of his adulthood. Each photo however told a story and required reams of background context in order to be explained fully, each photo meant a great deal to him, they were tangible, not in the greatest of conditions but they were rustic and resonated with me. We shouldn't be creating opportunities in order to take great photos we should take photos at great one off opportunities.People refer to photos as opposed to memories these days, it's so sad that every angle of every event is captured, leaving no mystery, nothing to the imagination at all. It's as if ,if your not in any photos, you were never there yet everyone who wasn't at the party gets a great feel for it as every minor moment is captured.People have become so concerned with how much fun it looked, rather than actually having a good night. Their enjoyment has made a transition from their night, to how people view it.The worst is when people pull faces to make it look like their having the best night of their lives(I probably do this all the time)when in reality they've probably been staring at the tv in some desperate hope of escape for a good twenty minutes prior to the flash.


It gets under my skin so much because deep down I know I'm one of those aggravating people who commits all of these things. I just wish we could revert , go back to a time without a flash at every party, go back to those spontaneous evenings when there is no evidence of every single situation of every 'funny' moment.Yes photos are great and I'm really glad I took so many when I was younger as they prove very entertaining to look back on from time to time but this constant bombardment of boozey bad photos will only leave people feeling bloated and bemused. Things need to change, I'm going to try and not have a camera at every opportunity and act like a spy.

Saturday, 18 December 2010

I've been SnOw lazy recently.

My school has just broken up for the Christmas holidays, but I honestly don't feel like I deserve them at all. This has been by far my laziest school term ever I don't know whether the weather has played a big part in it or I've just lost my drive.It's annoying because this is meant to be the most pivotal year of my life, the year that potentially effects and shapes the whole framework of my entire life.I've just grown lazy I guess.

I've not just been lazy with school work but in everything. I can't remember the last time I had a good work out, must've been months ago.So I got up this morning with my good old friend I haven't seen in a while; motivation.I did a good hour of Pilate's accompanied with some Bloc Party and Regina Spekktor and had a huge bowl of porridge.Things are getting back on track. (We'll see how long this lasts, I'll give myself until the end of the day)

The only good thing about this persistent snow is the opportunity to get some good snaps;








It looks as if we're going to be snowed in at the moment.Being meticulously prepared; my mothers just gone out to stock up on all the neccessities which should see us through the snow storm brewing outside. I don't know if I'm over joyed at the sight of the white stuff or a little bit annoyed. I'm too young to be playing scrooge!

It's not just the fact I hate the tentative treading on the ice, it's actually because it has the potential to prevent alot of fun and in an extreme case my sisters future career.We're meant to be dog sitting for my friend who is going away to Tenerief for 2 weeks over Xmas but their flight has been delayed due to the ice and generally bleak weather.My sister is due to be doing an audition for her favourite prestigious drama school on Monday but it looks as if it may be cancelled which is really annoying as she's been driving me crazy with her preparations for weeks , from helping her with her monologues to agonisingly hearing her sing the same song over and over and over again.It'd be gutting for all of us if she missed it.

Anyway I'm getting far too negative, I'm yet to write the family newsletter which is just a excuse to boast and brag to everyone about your families acheivements, or in my familys friends cases list all of the operations you've had in the year!. I still have the daunting prospect of wrapping my christmas presents and writing my annual Xmas messages.So that should keep me busy for all of 3 hours. Have fun in the snow, because I certainly won't be.

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Another weekend, another gig.

It feels like I haven't written for ages. It annoys me, it's not that I want to write, it's that I have to, I do enjoy it though.

Having gone over my phone bill by £45 and returning home to a less-than-happy daddy I was shocked to discover I still had enough money to see Bonobo at the weekend. After seeing him (Simon Green) for the first time at The Big Chill festival earlier this year and immediately downloading his most recent album as soon as I got home, I haven't stopped listening to his stuff, especially his collaborations with Andreya Triana; they are really beautiful.

It was all a bit last minute, whilst my friends and I sat in a local pub/bar on Friday we decided that we all actually had enough money to go (as that was the issue when we first discovered the gig was on)The next morning I luckily managed to get three tickets and before we knew it we were in the surprisingly short que getting all giddy and agitated like toddlers outside a toyshop (or more like a 'gaming' shop these days). Anyway, despite it being a Sunday and being extremely tired it was one of the most influential gigs I have been to; I've never appreciated live music so much ,probably because I could actually see the artists (which is a rarity as I'm pretty short)and we managed to blag roomy standing positions at the front. I felt so happy through the entire set (even including the support act, which I normally despise) a personal highlight was terrapin; enjoy.


Sunday, 5 December 2010

Any Human Heart ; captivated my whole heart, and head.

The last thing I want to turn into is a TV critic. Don't get me wrong I would love to do that as a career, you'd get to watch endless reams of TV and the pay cheque isn't too bad either; it's just not what I want to be constantly talking about, believe me once I start talking about TV , I won't stop.


Any Human Heart is a four part drama that has graced our screens for the past three weeks, there is only one episode left and I couldn't be more gutted. In a way I much prefer 4-part dramas or even 6 part series (in the case of Channel 4's Misfits) as I feel they leave a deeper imprint. It's like when you're living with someone everyday, you don't remember all the little events, who washed up, who walked the dog,  what was discussed over tea and even what you had for tea. To me soaps like Eastenders remind me of the monotony of everyday life , the familiar characters which always react in the same way. Whereas spontaneous holidays with the family remind me of the short excursions you take with short dramas, they are more intense, therefore make for more memorable occasions.

Anyway I'm straying as per usual, all I wanted to do was express how much this drama has effected me and warped my thinking. Any human would and should be effected in the same way. The series follows the life of Logan Mountstuart, a writer who suffered a head trauma which led him to loose his memory. It shows him revisiting his painful but certainly not plain past through stacks of diaries and memorabilia. His signature phrase is "Life is just all the good luck you have and all the bad luck you have, nothing else" and he certainly has his fair share of bad luck and a handful of women along the way (including his dead sons 16 year old girlfriend!)

What the series has really put into perspective is that life isn't about who lives and who dies it is about how we combat and adapt to change, be it the death of your wife and child or the success of your novel. In order to remain sane you must remain grounded (easier said than done) by constantly reminding yourself of the good luck you've had, it dilutes the bad luck which people often mull over for longer, extensive periods of time. It made me realise how fortunate I am, how fortunate we all are. Yes we spend most of our time with our hands glued to touch pads and keyboards and our ears glued to headphones but we are connected. I've ranted about how I hate the world domination that is Facebook but I haven't really stopped and taken a step back. This world is phenomenal, yes there may be a war or two now and then, and morals may appear to be old fashioned but we have such a vast access to information, to people and most importantly adverse opinions.

The more we read, the more we learn. I'm going to try and change my once bleak outlook and life and the future, I need to realise that you really do only live once. I used to think life was all about experiencing things just so you could boast and brag about it to your children, but when zoning out whilst my dad wittered away about his childhood I realised; its wasted. You should do things to get the most out of every situation, not to report back in 40 years time for it to fall onto deaf ears.

There are far too many regimented paths in this world in which I've been happily tottering down, unaware of the truth that you don't really have to follow any path because 'now' is an intangible event , everything we are and ever have been; is the past. Live for now and don't dwell on what could have been,look forward, to what will be.

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Winter Fonderland.

It only felt like yesterday when a huge group of us were shading ourselves at Sutton park in a last ditch attempt to heal our sun burnt shoulders. The summer flew by as did Autumn, Winter is well and truly here, and he doesn't seem to be easing us in gradually either. It wasn't until 5pm that I realised how thick the snow had fallen. With all this coursework, I just must have become oblivious. I hate letting things pass me by. I love winter. Not just because it is acceptable to wear boots and hats at school or not because we get to gorge ourselves with mince pies and mulled wine (although that is a factor) it is because it brings us all together,well it used to.

Despite the reoccurring depressing prospect you face every morning; hurling yourself out of your warm cocoon of a bed and onto the dark cold ice rink that is your wooden floor, there is nothing more beautiful then reaching up and peering out of your blinds or curtains to be greeted with a blanket of snow. It's ironic I chose the word blanket, as you often associate that word with warmth and comfort and snow in reality couldn't be further from those descriptions. When we were little my sister and I would refuse to allow our brother to play in the snow whilst it was snowing in fear that it would stop. We would literally barricade the doors, scream, do anything in order to keep him away from the crisp layer of heaven that awaited us outside. Looking back, it was a little irrational to say the least.


 Last years snow seemed so much more innocent, I suppose we all seemed so much more innocent. It's depressing that we have come to an age where Christmas has become just another day of the year. I distinctly remember being about 5 years old and unwrapping a huge toy castle, and reading the tag " To Jo, Merry Xmas Love Father Xmas", By this age I had already learnt to distinguish between my parents hand writing and this was most definitely my fathers. One year I was sleeping on my sisters floor ( we always share a room at Xmas) and my dads cover was well and truly blown when he stood on my stomach whilst trying to fill our stockings.

My twin sister and I used to apply so many layers of clothing that we could barely walk let alone frolic in the snow, warmth was essential.We would then run to the top of our road where our best friend lived and coax him out of bed (usually by throwing snowballs off his window) to join us. We would spend hours, making snowmen and giant snowballs that eventually transformed into solid ice boulders that would break your back if you attempted to move them. Then one day, our best friend moved.

 Anyway once the excruciating awakening is out of the way, it's time to play. Well it usually is, except this year I haven't actually found time to clamber into my 'snow gear' and get to grips the the sloppy stuff. Plus the fact that I have no-one to actually enjoy it with. It's odd how something is completely different when experienced alone. If you were alone and saw the most breath taking view, or sight, how could you ever rehearse and remember it if there is no-one to share the memory with. So yes, boo hoo me. My sister is working late at college and the only person , well in this case, thing that is willing to share the shriek evoking stuff with me is my dog ; Millie. She adores the snow, it certainly makes dog walking alot easier not only because she makes a pretty mean husky dog (despite being a collie cross) and my wellies make pretty nifty ski's but mainly because it means I don't have to carry around a soggy, stinky tennis ball to throw about for her. There are mounds of potential balls to be made, the best thing is I can reuse and recycle and if I haven't made the point that I'm an Eco-freak clear enough I will reinstate it.

I AM AN ECO FREAK.

Anyway, the dog is growling and the snow is melting. On winter nights I normally avoid walking all the way to the park but since the snow reflects the lights, it's as if I am walking in daylight and I need a long walk. A warm mince pie and ice cream is enough of an incentive to get me back home in under half an hour.

ciao.

Saturday, 27 November 2010

The not-so-German Market

Last night a group of us went to the Birmingham Christmas Market. But instead of buying any German delicacies we decided to head to symphony hall and grab a cuppa. We were going to go to a jazz club but the 'legal' and 'illegal' divide began. The underage didn't fancy risking it and conjured up plan B. If we don't get in, we'll buy some sweets. ha. We sounded like such toddlers, whilst everyone else was drinking, we'd be getting hyper off e-numbers!






We didn't even try in the end and decided to go for a little winter wander down the canals, we took a few snaps along the way;

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

A few 'I don'ts' I won't stick to.

I don't want to get married.

I don't consider myself to be a feminist but I also don't consider myself to be the dependent type.I would like to find somebody that loves me an equal amount yada yada yada and all that mushy stuff, but in my eyes, marriage just puts out the fire. I would much rather have a passionate, unpredictable relationship with somebody than a marriage in which daily routines iron out any chance of spontaneity and schedules,plans, and meetings kill the romance. I'm probably a bit of a romantic, I want everything to be spontaneous , unplanned and unique. Marriage will probably become old fashioned , divorce rates are going through the roof. I never , ever want to come into contact with that wad of worry,  who does? I'd like to think of myself as adventurous, but when it comes down to it, I'm probably just scared, I don't want to get burnt.

I don't want kids.

I've never been great with children, I just can't bring myself to heighten my voice to such an extent that a baby will respond with a frothy gargle. Saying that, contradicting myself (something I often do) I still find it easy to crawl towards my dog and talk to her as if she were a child, somethings obviously a little flawed in my logic. Then again, dogs don't acquire language, they don't grow into a bogey covered, screaming children that answer back or ask 'why?' a ridiculous amount of times. I'm a firm believer that children should be treated like adults, not in the sense that they can drink and smoke but I mean in conversation. Another reason I don't want children is that slight chance that you invest your life savings, your time and most importantly your love into this child and then at the age of 16 they turn around and tell you to 'f**k off'. There is nothing to stop them doing so. Imagine, that cute curly haired toddler grows into an antisocial, addicted, attention seeker? It is just not worth the risk.

I don't want to drive.

I've always prided myself on being a little Eco-warrior and I never in a million years ever envisaged me driving. I had this warped idea that I would be using public transport for the rest of my days. That was until I  got on the 33 . ha. On a serious note though, peer pressure and practicality got the best of me and there I was on my 17th birthday , a bag of nerves behind the wheel. I've been learning to drive for almost a year and just the thought of the about of carbon emissions I've churned out alone makes me feel ill. I still stand by my fundamental thought; that I want to live somewhere where I don't need to drive, or get a bus , or a train for that matter. I want to live in a remote place that has everything ,that's self-contained . I want to ride my bicycle (refrain from bursting into song) everywhere. You could call it sad, but everyone has their own little way in which they want their life to be.
 
I don't want to live in England.
 
Whenever I try to imagine my future, where I'll be, England just doesn't seem to fit into the equation. Funnily enough I see myself in New Zealand, not that I've ever been there or even know a great deal about the place. Images of riding down long winding roads deeply embedded in the countryside, surround by vast green constantly pervade into everday life, it's my idea of heaven. The slight problem is that If I really want to be a script writer, and really want to be successful I will need to be based in London, the media hub. Part of me thinks, no I've been given so many opportunities because I live in England. Seems like I've talked myself out of my own opinion.All I know is that the city is not for me.
 
I don't want lots of possessions.
 
After reading an article a couple of weeks ago about minimalism it has really being playing on my mind. It wasn't until I moved rooms( in my house) that I realised I wasn't aware I owned half the stuff I did. This lead me to the conclusion that, If I didn't remember I had it, then why do I need it? The logical thing then was to chuck it all out, but the is a little hoarder deeply intertwined with my soul that just wouldn't allow it. Another thing is that my twin sister always borrows my things, and I couldn't care less, I spend loads of money on boots, I love boots and you'd think that when I caught her wearing my newest pair I would have gone mad, but nothing urged me, no anger, nothing. I went to a clothes swap at my Mums friends house, it was the best thing I've done in ages, If everyone did the same, we'd never need to buy clothes ever again.My iPod hasn't been charged in weeks, I don't need it. I send about 3 texts a day, that is less than my 68 year old father! I would love to travel, anywhere, just to see if I could survive with a bag of my things, so I could come back and just donate all my things to charity or friends.
 
 
So I want to ;
                    Live  in NZ, ride my bike, write my scripts and avoid screaming children at all costs.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

"get my jacket off!" "get my face off!"

By request I've decided to give you an insight into the world of 'Twindom'.

She found the camera straight away,typical.

We're non-identical twins (although we look shockingly similar) and yes we have our little tiffs (usually revolving around clothes)but they're normally outweighed by moments when we both feel that there is no-one in the world we could trust more ,but is this usual to sisters ,what makes a twin relationship different? Well here is all you need to know about 'her' and I.

I think being a twin really helps your memory, we'll always reminisce which refreshes and revises, essentially solidifying our memories. I'm not too sure how I'll cope alone with remembering and I'm sure she'll feel as if I've been biased if she gets a chance to read this. I'll try to be as neutral as possible.

Glancing over photos of when I was a lot younger there is a distinct case of ‘double-act’ syndrome (when one twin is messy and the other is tidy), in every single photo I flick through; I’m there looking as if I’ve just been dragged through a bush and she's sitting there with an angelic smile and beautifully combed hair lapping up all the ‘aww’s’!
She was always a fan of the camera,(right)little poser.

I vaguely remember fighting, I think with us being twin girls we felt as if we were best friends, we thrived off the attention we got when we went out with our mother and father, We both knew people were starring so we tried to look and act as cute as possible .We did fight our brother Ben however (who is 3 years older) at any given opportunity, it would usually take place in the back of the car (not really the safest of places!). The fights would usually consist of 'her' and I giggling and irritating my brother enough to give us each a dead leg each (at the same time- it's quite a skill he mastered). We found it hilarious that we could always wind our brother up, some days we even made it our soul aim. Those were the days when we had nothing else to do but watch cartoons and go on CD-rom games like ‘rugrats’ or ‘pingu’ so we had to find a better source of entertainment ; bullying our big brother.(those were the days when I didn't have a blog to help me procrastinate).

we look pretty alike here, ignore the awful 'do's

I only have two distinct memories of jealousy (pre-teens) the first reason was when my mother would say goodnight to us, she would come into our room and hug both of us, but we would find competition in the tiniest of places.'her' hug may have been a milli-second longer or a bit tighter than mine which resulted in my mother spending up to 15 minutes saying goodnight .Every night, until we were content we had squeezed an equal amount of love out of her.


The second reason was that she would win everything, and I mean everything.Whether it was a CBBC competition or a local drawing competition she would win. I think my mum and dad did try to compensate for my total lack of creativity by making her share her prizes with me. To be honest I wasn’t too dismayed, I was happy because I saw us as a unit, if she won technically I won because I would get something as well. There was also the boy predicament .We couldn’t have a boyfriend during primary school as they would always fancy the other twin an equal amount, so we would both go to our boyfriend’s house and they would come to ours(we thought it was normal to share boyfriends!)

Our parents insisted that we wore different clothes when we were babies. Once we became aware of clothes we didn't want to wear the same things anyway, individuality didn’t even cross our minds throughout primary school, we had the same friends and it didn’t seem to be a problem. When you are a twin you just see each other as friends, sometimes you even forget that you are twins. A great example of this is when we were about 11 we saw a pair of twins walking down the street wearing the exact same thing , exact same hair , everything was identical even down to the tiny detail of hair clip,  this was alien to us and we just thought it was completely peculiar.

She's on the right, again.

I think twins(like everything in life) can swing two ways , they will either try to be completely different in a ditch attempt to find themselves and become individual ,or they will play up to the stereotype of identical twins and wear and act exactly the same. We've gone there, at one point in year 8 (age 13) I tried to completely detach myself from her, I had a new best friend, a new set of friends and altogether and a new image. I was what you would call ‘an emo’ and she was what you would call ‘a chav’ we had different tastes in music and boys, but wern't ourselves .

Eventually over time we merged, both our music taste, taste in men and clothe styles ; which have practically intertwined. Which in a way is handy as we end up having twice as many clothes!



On a serious note though, having a twin is almost like having a 'soul mate' ( if you believe in them). I laid in my bed last night and scared myself .I let the 'what if she died' thought cross my mind and instantly started welling up, I buried the thought and went to sleep. I don't know what I'd do without her, who would I tell, everything (I really mean everything) to?


Schoolwork is one big competition to us, I think that contributes to how well we did at school, because we always strive to beat each other, I think that would be a great way to boost grades, match each pupil with another pupil with equal ability and create competition between them, I’m only kidding. Seriously, we are lucky though, as you hear stories about twins where ones clever and the others not, which coincidentally creates a huge rift. In our case we were practically equal in every subject ,however, I tend to be better at sporty things and she tends to be better at creative things.





University is the next big challenge for us, will we keep in regular contact? Will we thrive off the separation and new found friends?

Monday, 8 November 2010

Briefcase Wa***er!

This is my 17th ever post and I'm 17 so I kind of wanted to sum my life up in 17 concise points (like that's ever going to happen) I waffle so much.

So where to start;

I am a twin.

I enjoy walking,running,swimming and generally being outdoors.

I used to run for the West Midlands.
I've done drama from the age of 9.

I lived in a little village in Yorkshire til I was 6 years old then I moved to Birmingham.

I've completed NVQ Level 3 in BSL (British Sign Language) and have been learning it since I was 11.

I'm commonly referred to as the 'Breifcase Wa**er!'( usually by the minions)

I like a good bargain, you'll often find me mooching around charity shops and car boot sales.

I'm a qualified open water diver (BSAC) and have dived in Europe and Egypt.

I have stupidly short hair and have to wear a suit and look like a right bloke.

I was once a member of the British gymnastics team (Under 10's) pahaha.

I was an extra in The Golden Compass (2003)

I've met Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig (had to do a bit of name dropping didn't I)

I've had two poems published, I love a bit of the tree of Po.

I'm currently learning to drive, after 9 months I feel as if I'm finally getting somewhere.

I want to go to Bournemouth University to read 'Scriptwriting for Tv and Film'.

I want to complete NVQ Level 4 in BSL then train as an Interpreter.



done.

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Dreaming of another world.


This weekend has been pretty decent. With a week of school work driving me up the wall and an intense increase in driving lessons literally driving me up the wall  I needed to do something of worth.But yet again I found myself facing a night in, alone, on a Friday. Dismal to say the least. I can't believe this but I'm actually going to praise Facebook now. A simple status expressing my lack of plans ended up with an invite to a gig.A Mystery Jets to be precise. Although I didn't have a ticket and chances were, I'd have to pay the dodgy ticket men who linger outside of the venues a handsome sum of money to get in, I realised I had no other options as staying in certainly wasn't one.

I've grown unusually pessimistic in my old age (pah!) and just assumed there wouldn't be a ticket for me to scam and had visions of me walking the streets of Birmingham at night (they're dodgy enough in the day). To help things we were 45 minutes late, but I was in luck, supreme luck. The dodgy ticket sellers had one crumpled admission slip left. The tickets were selling for £12:50 online before the gig but dodgy ticket man wanted £30, he looked so surprised when I instantly said yes , I think he even said 'really'. Ha I'm a fool I know.

The gig was really really good, intimate and everyone was strangely polite, one women even said to us ' would you like to go in front of me' , uh .hell .yeah. It was probably the fact the place was full to the brim of older(probably uni students) ultra-stylish , ultra-image conscious people who didn't really want to get too close to strangers in fear of a piece of hair falling out of place.I have never seen so many denim jackets and plaid shirts and I really didn't appreciate the fact that big clompy boots have come into fashion. My toes were numb within minutes as 6ft giant (who we always somehow end up behind!) crushed my toes to peices.



^^ deffo an unexpected highlight.

Although it was a civil gig, compared to the majority I've been to, the typical jumping and pushing was inevitable. One thing money couldn't buy was the lead singer proposing to his girlfriend at the gig and her saying yes.The support band kept crowd surfing aswell, which all in all made it pretty unique.I don't regret paying a ridiculous price for the ticket, that money probably would've just been wasted on Mc.Donald's (which I'm quite partial to throughout the winter months). So yeah that was Friday, very very good night , I love a bit of spontaneity. That is one good thing about Facebook, it's insanely practical.

Last night was a prime example of the disadvantages that Facebook carries on its little evil back. Everyone usually goes to the local grammar school fireworks ( I have for the past 4 years) but last night really showed me how much information Facebook allows you to access. I found myself looking at people who I recognised from Facebook and being able to instantly retrieve information about their last 3 relationships, their school and the last 3 parties they went to. I swear my brain is full with insignificant information about strangers. If only I could revise my A-level notes as well as I can revise hundreds of relationship status'.The thing is, it's subconscious, it gets us when we don't realise.

I don't feel sorry for old people at all. It may seem like a sweeping statement that's completely irrelevant . They lived life without technology taking over every aspect of their lives they probably had a better lives and certainly had better eye sight. I don't know about anyone else but my eyes go all red and blotchy if I've been on my laptop too much. Anyway they knew how to amuse themselves, if they had nothing to play with they'd invent their own games, they bonded better.If anything I'm jealous of old people. Now you put a room of teenagers together and they'll be itching to use their iPods or phones within 5 minutes. Anyway I always end up ranting about technology as if I'm some luddite, the truth is I rely on technology as much as any other teenager so I can't condemn.

If only I was born in the 50's. but then again. I wouldn't be writing this now, and wouldn't have seen the Mystery Jets on Friday.

Friday, 5 November 2010

The kids don't stand a chance.

Aside from being the title of a pretty good song, it's a phrase I've been mulling over these past few days. It's true, with tuition fees reaching a possible £9,000 by next years university entry's there really seems to be no hope for the year below us , and all the other years below them.

We're extremely lucky (everyone who has applied for Uni this year, for entry next year) we've just missed out of the extortionate increase.  £3,000 on tuition fees per year is already enough to whiten the few final grey strands of hair on my fathers head let alone £9,000 that other parents will be facing.

The pressure has never been so great to get into University and the Browne report has only furthered that pressure, with everyone wanting to get into University whilst the prices are relatively low. This means more mature students who have been putting off university will also think about going sooner rather than later. A- levels are hard enough without this added pressure.

I was sitting on the bus just thinking ' what if I completely cock my exams up? what if I don't get into University this year' before it wouldn't be too much of an issue but with an estimated  £18,000 increase in dept ; it is not an option. My course is hardly competitive as well,I don't need to do a degree in my chosen subject to have a career in it. I feel really sorry for those who have decided to totter down the path of medicine or law and are completely degree-dependent for their future careers.

If it came down to it, and I didn't get onto any courses, even through clearing, I'd probably scrap the Uni idea and complete my NVQ Level 4 in BSL whilst working my way up the ranks of some little production company, even if it means making countless cups of tea for a year or two. I'd find a way around it.

Everything I seem to post recently sounds dismal, I'm quite an optimistic person, I swear.

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Leaf it out!

I'm a huge fan of Autumn. The fact nature can be so aesthetically pleasing never seizes  to amaze me, I'm a right little tree-hugging hippie at heart. The ruby wafers and orange slices of leaves are not only nice to look at, but are heaven to run through (when no-one's watching). There is nothing more I love then hurling myself at a massive pile of leaves, well that was until this afternoon during my walk home.

After being trapped on the not-so-pleasant bus that is the 51 for a frustrating 55 minutes and after catching a glimpse of a massive pile of crispy, freshly-fallen leaves, I couldn't wait to get off. So I casually ran towards the leaves ( if that's even possible) and started to kick them about. I was in heaven until I kicked something warm, and what appeared to be spiky. That's right. I kicked a poor, defenceless, hibernating hedgehog!

 I was mortified at myself. It's like when you accidentally kick your dog ( it doesn't happen often, I assure you!) how are they meant to know you didn't intend to hurt them? luckily it was a rather gentle kick, and I only managed to disturb its sleep, I was tempted to pick it up and re-submerge it in the leaves, but I don't know the first thing about hedgehogs, let alone how to handle them! Anyway, the disgruntled hedgehog happily wandered back into the crunchy , cosy home it'd made for itself.

If only I could forget about the incident so easily, It really shook me up. That'll be the last time I go wading around in leaves so carelessly. Just to make sure; I don't make a habit of animal abuse!

Sunday, 31 October 2010

All Hallow Even.



 

 
 I recycled an Alice In Wonderland dress, and transformed it into 'Alice In Zombieland'.

Even though I'm clearly celebrating Halloween here, do any of us really know the reason as to why we celebrate this fright evoking evening? I fear (no pun intended) that Halloween is simply another money making, consumer crunching festivity, with no meaning behind it at all. Yes you could go onto argue that Christmas is one big commercialised celebration but at least we are all aware of Jesus and the meaning (although the majority of us, including me, don't allow that thought to enter our minds as we're ripping our presents open and gorging ourselves on chocolates and Yorkshire puds!)

The truth is no-one knows the true origin of Halloween.

Aren't the frightening events of everyday life ( especially featured on crime watch) enough to scare us constantly ? So why do we continue to do it? I suppose you could argue we still feel the need to watch horror films.Despite all of this for me it's just an excuse to get gothed up and stain my skin red for a week with fake blood. But does it actually mean anything to anyone?



Adam , my sister boyfriend dressed up as Count Dracula.
 

Ian, Adams dad dressed up as a generic zombie .


Saturday, 30 October 2010

Life moves pretty fast.If you don't stop to look around once in a while you could miss it.

Following on from what I said in 'Half term Horrors' the builders had finished the driveway ,it's Saturday so I should get an uninterrupted lie in right? wrong, again. At 8:55am the squeaking started. My dad must have some serious vendetta against my sleeping, he stood directly outside my room and began to clean my windows.It didn't sound like he was making an attempt to be delicate about it either.


why?why?why?!?!

The sheer, splitting squeaks only lasted about 10 minutes then were replaced by the muffled sound of my elderly next door neighbour.As soon as I strained, in my sleepy state, to make out the words 'how was your holiday?' fall from her frail mouth ,I knew a storm was brewing. My parents recently went away to Australia for a month, leaving my twin sister and I to fend for ourselves. At first we were just getting by, but towards the end of the month the temptation got too strong and we had a few 'gatherings' and one event you could class as a 'party'.

Anyway I'll cut to the chase, a few people were sick outside the front of the house and my neighbours complained, threatening to tell our parents as soon as they got back.So, at 9:05am the stink bomb was dropped, contaminating our parents prestine image of us. My initial thoughts were 'bitch, absolute bitch, we're young, let us have a good time!' then I began to empathise. They're retired, trying to enjoy the last of their lives together, the last thing they want is some terrible teens disturbing their sleep. Then I felt really guilty and just wanted to go back to sleep a pretend the potential bollocking we would later receive was just a horrible dream.

I just couldn't settle, I started thinking about life and ,as dismal as is sounds, how short it is. How is it fair that young people get to have all the fun? If middle aged people go out clubbing, you know what all the young'uns are thinking 'what the hell are they doing here?' but it shouldn't be that way. It's the middle aged people who are working, dealing with more stress then we probably ever have, who probably need a good night out to take their minds off work and the harsh reality of adult life. Yet it's the underage (usually) teenagers , who have the least amount of money ,probably borrowing it off their middle-aged parents in order to go out and have a good time. Something seems a little wrong. Surely your life should keep getting better so you die at your happiest?


But I guess like most things, life is a cycle, vicious as it is. We're born crying, complaining, and dependent on others to meet our basic needs. And for those of us who become frail, aged, and easily annoyed ,that's how we'll leave, in a similar state to how we came.

This post is a little morose but I suppose the only way in which we can accept death is by accepting life, and that takes an entire lifetime in itself.

''Dream as if you'll live forever.  Live as if you'll die today.'' - James Dean

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Half term horrors.

So after 6 weeks of extensive work (yeah right!) in my first half term of A-levels, I felt like I'd earned a well deserved rest. well that's what I envisaged my week off to be, sleeping eating and more sleeping.

However,this morning I woke up to a deep low vibrate, I genuinely thought we were having an earthquake (as rare as they are in England).I peer out of the window to be greeted with a trio of builders bottoms and rowdy banter.Trust my dad to stick a spanner in the works, or more so, a digger. Out of all the opportunities they've had this year they decided to get our drive dug up and re-laid this week! So this  morning  I've woke up with a banging head due to the banging outside. The worst thing is, my bedroom is on the ground floor, and I have blinds. Enabling the workmen to peek through at me in my unsettled slumber.

Unaware that they were starting work this morning, I went to bed with only my underwear on, leaving me completely and utterly trapped as I knew there was a slight chance they'd be able to catch a glimpse of my semi-naked body emerging from my cocoon.So I crawled through my duvet and found myself on the floor, I then crawled to my sofa to grab some jeans, and in the most awkward position ever, I attempted to pull them up, not to mention it's nearly November and my wooden floor was like an ice rink.

It's not just the 8am wake ups that are irritating, it's the fact I have a mound of coursework to get through and all I can hear is the low hum of the digger and the smashing of bricks. I guess I won't be getting the rest that I didn't really deserve anyway.

Monday, 25 October 2010

Interpretation.

This evening my mother (who is deaf) and her friend Shirley (who is also deaf) roped me in to interpret for them at my mothers local Pilate class. The hall in which the class was taken was as humid as hell and my choice of clothing was anything but practical.I wore black skinny jeans and biker boots with a grey hoodie. Initially people were looking around as if to say ' why is she wearing that for Pilate's?' blissfully unaware of my true intentions of being there.My mother is always quick to embarrass or in this case, to brag. Excruciatingly embarrassed already sitting beside the instructor my mother felt the need to draw even more attention to me by exclaiming' we have an interpreter here this evening' .There they were , 48 total strangers looking at me with an almost  bemused expression.

Although I may have had the reddest face in the room at the beginning of the class, ten minutes in I was faced with rows of sweating and struggling seniors.Certain exercises were more , lets say, awkward to execute. I had never seen so much middle-aged VPL and squished scrotum's in all my 17 years of life and didn't really ever want to be put in that situation again. There were many times in which I wanted to just look up and laugh, but I refrained 'I must focus on interpreting' I told myself.Luckily the instructor had a cold and didn't want to strain her voice too much, so she hardly spoke throughout the entire hour.

It's strange how people look at you in a new light whenever they recognise the fact that you can sign.At the start of the class I could almost hear what the women were thinking ' why does this young thing need to come to Pilate's? she's already skinny, putting us 'past-it' ones to shame' but as soon as I settled in at the front and began to sign, they looked at me with admiration , almost as if to say ' wow, she's young but knows sign language, that's impressive'. I'm not going to lie, I love the attention, thrive of it even. Sometimes, even when my mum doesn't need me to interpret I will, I just love it.

Anyway, when I was sitting there, in skin tight jeans, unable to participate but not needed to interpret I was able to think. Not just any superficial thoughts like ' what shall I wear tommorow' or ' I wonder what dad's making us for tea' but real, serious thoughts.

I was staring at my mother and her friend for quite sometime , thinking about friendship and what it means. They say we pick our friends, but I don't think that's entirely true. In school or at work , you may not class yourself as friends with certain people , but you'll always be courteous and 'friendly' towards them. What  makes people real friends? Is there ever a friendship that is completely equal, both people appreciating each other the exact same amount? As cynical as it sounds,I doubt it.

With social networking sites governing 'friendships' and allowing us to make ' friends' so easily you'd think we'd all learn to accept each other more as we are exposed to so many people on such a regular basis. But this doesn't seem to be the case.I'd be contradicting myself if I said 'you should never go on social networking site' because I'm a self confessed addict and know the practicalities of being able to contact people, for free, all over the world. I just get frustrated often by how superficial it is all becoming.

 Anyway, I was looking at this synchronised sea of bobbing people, performing the '100' Pilate's exercise and I thought ' If only it was possible to know everything about every single one of these people'okay maybe 'everything' is a bit unrealistic, but basic facts, or exceptional experiences in which we could look at in awe.If everyone knew just a smidgen of information about everyone else, maybe we'd learn to respect each other more .Certain people see other people as investments, they have to be impressed by the initial encounter in order to invest their time and care into them. Admittedly I'm probably one of those people and I find this side of human nature very sad.

If we all shared more, talked more, and cared more I think the world would be  a rather pleasant place.

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Bourne to be there.

Like the coast, my mind is always changing.Although sandy, my trip to Bournemouth today really cemented the idea of going to University there.




I really did save the best til last , Bournemouth being my final University open day visit. The 3.5 hours journey was definitley worth it, not only to spend a good few hours solely with my mum (which is a rariety these days) but also to get some driving practice in!



So now I know where I want to go, all I have to do is work my little bum off in order to secure a place on the 'Scriptwriting for Tv and Film' course.

Friday, 22 October 2010

Zante 2010.

This July we went to Zante ( the family and I) but as I didn't have a blog then I'll have to fill you in now. AS-level exams were done, so we followed the sun. A week of extremes, extreme highs (water skiing, snorkeling, olive grove walking) and extreme lows ( projectile vomiting for 6 hours, due to being spiked). The last thing you want on holiday is to be ill but I always have to be ill at the least convenient of times. Whether it be Xmas or my birthday I'll always have an illness brewing, maybe the excitement triggers it, or maybe I'm just bloody unlucky, probably the latter. Anyway here are a few holiday snaps and a short video.










Zante 2010 from on Vimeo.

Thursday, 21 October 2010

blog off ;

It's been 4 days since I started blogging and I have to admit I'm already awfully addicted.
Despite the distinct lack of comments and followers I'm getting, the ability to post something, entirely constructed and crafted by myself,and the fact it will always be here is exceedingly exciting.

I've noticed that blogs carry a heavy weight of stigma on their cyber spines. As I browse through the random 'next blog's I find page upon page of knitting nerds,cupcake crazies and proud parents. I may be wrong to assume this but by the looks of it they're all middle-aged and middle-classed , is there any other young people blogging? Are all blogs really just for companies which can't afford proper .coms? Are they really just for ex-writers or Junior writers clinging onto their last strand of success or trying desperately to find success and recognition? But most importantly are they really just for pretentious people who think their opinion is superior to everyone else's?

 I really want to prevent my blog becoming just another conceited citizen's diary of everyday rants. Why should I assume people actually care what I think? Why should I assume that anyone is even reading this right now? I shouldn't. I see this blog as a great place for me to vent and record and if my venting resonates within some people, then that's just an added bonus.

If only we could dive into baths.

Baths is an experimental music maker from Los Angeles who creates
''blissed-out electronic music that occupies a middle ground between cassette-happy chillwave and bedroom-pop nostalgia''

This has to be my all-time favourite of his tracks.


Baths - Aminals from Emmanuel Donate on Vimeo.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

UC*AS *ankissmy

To defer or not to defer? that is the question.
Okay so the novelty of the prospect of university has wore off. With the deadline looming and friends of friends already recieving offers and interviews, its all never felt so real.Do I really want to spend another year walking around Walsall just wishing I was somewhere else, somewhere vibrant and full of life? Do I really want to work for a year, gaining vital experience and more importantly vital income? With the horror show that is the budget pressuring us even more to get to Uni as quick as possible I've never felt so unsure. I've always been indescicive but daily mindsets lead me to change not only my choice of University but my entire course. Even though I started researching Universities last September, I still don't think we have been given enough time to make this life changing desicion.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

The walls have ears.

'This year is the most important year of your life' is the all too familiar phrase that trickles out of hopeful parents, teachers and acquaintances poised pouts. What appears to be the leaning tower of paper Pisa sits on my dining room table calling me, craving attention. With all this work to do , you would think I'd just get stuck in, the sooner I start, the sooner I get it done right? Wrong.

It's getting dark outside, there's a full moon and the devil weighing on our generations scrawny shoulders has come out to play again.Facebook.This new yet familiar world of cyberlife is slowly ruining civilization, that  may appear slightly strong and awfully assumptive but the ropes of this relentless roundabout of communication have latched onto our generation and are practically strangling younger generations. To avoid rope burn and even worse ,social exclusion we satanically sign in, for most of us, every night.

Isn't it odd that you can be 'friends' with someone, know every location of their current and previous display pictures yet struggle to describe their beliefs, their morals, the core human beneath the layers of photoshopped perfection and superficial scribbles on their 'wall'. That's another thing, conversations aren't even conversations anymore they may aswell be forums,meticulous messages are posted publicly on 'walls', with the intention of being read by every newsfeed onlooker. I am convinced there is a correlation between the amount of hours spent on facebook and the level of self esteem you have. If I were to do a study I would predict that when time on facebook goes up, self esteem goes down.

This level of unlimited access to information may seem harmless but given the right circumstances it can be soul destroying. Everyone can see photos of where you've been, or where you haven't been and ultimately will result in people feeling left out or uninformed, unloved .It may also correlate with jealousy , especially amongst girls. Girls, should stop agonising over 'awful' photos that have been uploaded, luckily I like to look at the bigger picture (no pun intended) and often detach myself, for a brief moment, from our cyberworld. None of it matters, like profile pictures, people will change, what's 'Top News' on Facebook today will be at the bottom of some soul searching scroll tomorrow.

As easy as it is to get sucked in , I think we all need to take a step back, to mourn. Mourn the days when you could bump into someone you hadn't seen in years and get on like nothing had happened in between without having images of their past years bombarding your everyday life, informing you of every little change. This constant informing will only inevitably lead to people not inquiring, people not worrying. No mystery will remain, no curiosity, no human nature. The ironic thing is, it's called a 'social' networking site.

However, chances are, without Facebook you wouldn't be reading this now.