Wednesday, 28 August 2013

On privileged celebrities.

Oh wow there is so much going on in the news at the moment. Basically a bunch of famous privileged people behaving like arse hats. This is nothing new of course and people have been vocal about these things for a long time. Maybe I'm more involved or clued up now but I feel like I'm hearing those voices grow louder & stronger.

I was really hoping that people would take this opportunity to listen. I know, I'm naïve. I'm going to give credit where credit is due as I have spoken to many people who do seem to be taking things on board albeit with some disagreement here and there. Unfortunately what I've seen most of though from white people especially is more foot stomping and a refusal to listen. I've seen the usual level of denial mixed with slut-shaming mixed with poor shaming. I've seen the word bored thrown around which is something which made feel deeply uncomfortably. I've said it a couple of times already but I will say it again, only the privileged have the luxury to feel bored regarding important cultural discourse. It is hard to see oppression when you are generally the oppressor. This is something that white people do really need to think about. Did you hear that Miley?

And this brings me to the other arse hat in the news at the moment. A certain rich dude telling poor people they're doing poverty wrong. Also as you were once a spokesperson for Sainsbury's should you be telling people not to shop in supermarkets? I've said it once and I'll say it again, why don't you give some of that money to food-banks instead of telling poor people they shouldn't get a big TV? Also don't hate on cheesy chips you food fascist!!!!

Friday, 23 August 2013

On being the new Batman!

Ok, I lied. I'm not the new Batman. Totally wish I was though.

I kind of wish I was Batman because he probably doesn't suffer any street/sexual harassment. I do (most if not all women do) every single fucking day. Nope you did not read that wrong. Every day! Every single fucking day that I leave my house some guy or guys say something or looks me up and down. I have also on more than one occasion had strangers (always men) touch me. I could make a long list of what has been said to me but honestly I just don't have the time or the energy. I never know how to react, if I'm with friends I might say something but if I'm alone I wouldn't dare. I see myself as a strong woman but I'm just too scared. What if they hurt me? What if they verbally abuse me more?

How do we tackle this? How do we change a society that lets this happen? I don't know but I can't well go around wishing I was Batman all the time.

Thursday, 22 August 2013

On Facebook stalking and odious comparisons.

I did something very silly today, I looked at the Facebook page of one of the girls my ex boyfriend (who I've very recently got back together with) had liaisons with whilst we were apart. It was silly because a, it shouldn't matter b, it has only served to make me upset and c, she is incredibly beautiful so I began to compare myself to her.

She is most likely a rounded human being with perfections and imperfections alike but in my head she is now a beautiful, perfect goddess. It doesn't help that she is genuinely quite the beauty. Now here's the worst part, she is thin, much thinner than I. As someone who is recovering from ED (it may have been a long time ago now but you are essentially always "recovering") it's difficult in a way that many people will fail to comprehend. She is thin, she is something that I am not and however healthy and happy I may be (or show the world that I am) something I desperately long to be. I am better, I think about it less and my relationship with food now is healthy, full of wonder and curiosity. However these things are a trigger, comparing myself to a woman whom I might have been attracted to myself if had I met her. Odious comparisons based on nothing but photos of a very beautiful woman.

I do not like to talk about my MH issues very publicly (or online) not because I am ashamed but because I am scared and I do not wish to be defined as a whole by a part of who I am. I do not wish for pity or for people to be careful with me. So I apologise to those who do not know me in person if ever my posts are a little vague.

My only thought however irrational, untrue or down-right stupid is "she is thin & beautiful, I am not".

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

On love & compassion.

I've been thinking even more about how we treat each other and one thing that always sticks in my mind is "lack of compassion". I see this sometimes in people I meet and also very much online. Especially within feminisms exclusionary groups. I like to spend much of my time watching, reading and listening. There is much anger, an anger I believe should be listened to. One that has brewing for a seemingly long time. Anger can be vey destructive but it is often healthy. It can wake us up to voices that we did not want to listen to before. It can open up new doors for open and inclusive discourse. In my personal experience of anger it's a way of letting go, spewing forth all the things that have been kept inside for so long.

I also watch many people stomp their feet and shout about how hurt their feelings are. If you're feelings are hurt when someone talks about the abuse they have suffered from you then I'm afraid that your hurt is not valid. You need to listen, apologise and learn from the experience. You are NOT the one being abused!

I'm not going to go all soppy here and talk about our need to love in great detail. Except to say it is much easier to love than to hate, it is much easier to treat people with love and compassion than with hate, it is much easier to include than to exclude.

Monday, 19 August 2013

On being called an attention seeker.

This has happened to me a few times in my life, usually by older slightly more conservative people. I think it comes from a fundamental misunderstanding of "alternative" cultures. The idea that because you look different from "the norm" you are doing so to command attention from others. Personally I look the way I do because it makes me happy, it's fun but also it is a little bit of an armour. If I were to strip it all away and look natural I would feel uncomfortable, unhappy, naked and possible quite distressed. I cannot deny that it draws attention but I am not deliberately seeking it.

However it did get me thinking, would we ever call a man an attention seeker? A loner, weirdo, creative maybe even mad but an attention seeker? What about if they're loud and brash would we use it then as we do with women? I can't think of an instance where I have ever called or thought about a man as an attention seeker but I have about a woman. I feel like a hypocrite when I think about this. Also is it really so bad to crave attention? Don't we all to some degree want people to pay us attention, to feel wanted and included in a situation?

We adhere much more negative connotations when we talk about women than when we talk about men. We use our language to put women down and reduce them to nothing but objects wanton of multi dimensions. Our language is littered with it. Slut for a girl who says yes, friend zone for a girl who says no, bitch for a girl who speaks her mind, lonely or unfulfilled when they choose to be childless, a traitor to feminism if a mother chooses to stay at home with her child. Asking for it, hot mess, damaged, victim, broken, manic pixie dream girl, cold, she's more like a guy, let herself go, dress for your size, holds a grudge, faux feminist, easy, man eater, nice tits, cooorrr yeeaaah, so can I watch you kiss that girl?, you just need a decent cock in you!

Thursday, 15 August 2013

On how we treat each other (a musing).

Over the past few days I've been going through some pretty shitty personal stuff. I've been spending a lot of time thinking about how we treat each other. Not just those we love but people around us in general.

I've been wondering a lot about why we exclude, lack compassion or feel the need to put people down. I wonder why we are cruel and deceitful to those we claim to love the most. Is there something inherent in us that makes us manipulate or abuse? And for those of us with a lot of privilege (myself of course included) why we feel the need to keep certain people from being equal to us? I won't deign to imagine that I have anything other than patronising solutions, in many instances it is for me to just stand beside in solidarity but know that I have nothing else to offer. You may have from me whatever you want. I'm learning.

On a personal level, when someone tells you what they need from you know this is genuinely what they need from you. When you continue to cause pain they will slowly retreat. 

I've also been thinking about how we treat those we work with or receive a service from. As soon as we see someone as below us we think we can pretty much speak to them any way we want. If we don't get what we want we stomp our feet and treat them with distain. We are thoughtless.

People are people and people get hurt, be nicer dickheads.

Thursday, 8 August 2013

On all the anger I have spilling out over the edges. (Possible TW)

I'm angry at all the people who have made me feel bad for calling myself certain things. I'm angry at Richard Dawkins for being such a dickwad that I feel bad about calling myself an atheist. I'm not going to defend why I call myself that just because he's a shit but I blame him for giving it a bad name.

I'm angry at those white feminists who hold us back. Asking us to be quiet and attacking those who question them. I want to question everything and when you don't give a shit about people or exclude them then I'm going to stop listening to you completely. It may be childish but you can't even respond properly to the people asking you to listen to them. You block them on twitter instead, well done.

I'm angry at men who just refuse to listen, angry at the ones calling themselves feminist but not letting me speak. I'm angry at those who berate and try to insult me by saying that "everyone who's attacking me has the same twitter bio hahahaha". Maybe that should be telling you something? All these people identifying as something calling you out on the same thing.

I'm angry at high profile women saying that child abuse victims can be predatory, that's it on that. I can't actually say anything else because I think I might fall apart if I do.

I'm angry at personal life shit. I'm angry at myself, I'm angry at the world because people aren't listening. I'm angry at my own failings as a white cis feminist, I want to be better.

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

On being someone who makes inappropriate jokes.

I'm not going to tell you some of them because it's utterly mortifying. I'm one of those awful people who's not very good and thinking before I speak. Don't worry, I'm working on it! I don't tend to get embarrassed by much but this does get to me. These things slip out, it's like I can see the words flowing out of my mouth. I can hear the joke forming in my head and it's almost like a compulsion to speak it. Afterwards I usually feel awful, mean, embarrassed, thoughtless and all other adjectives you can think of.

Now of course people have a right to make any jokes just like we all have a right to be utterly horrified by some of them (see rape jokes). I'm not saying I'm not allowed to make jokes just that I really need to do my best to think & hold back at certain times. I do always follow it up with apologising profusely afterwards. I would save myself and the other person much embarrassment and hurt by just not doing it in the first place.

On the flip side though some of my terrible jokes have been successful, very successful even. Maybehaps I need to work on gauging situations and people as much as thinking before I speak.

What about you? What bad trait are you most mortified about?

Monday, 5 August 2013

On #twittersilence.

Lots of people have been writing about this and have probably done a much better job than I can. However I want to talk about it too, because I'm not very good at being silent. I have no interest in being silent. I used to like Caitlin Moran, I read "How to be a feminist" and thought it was hilarious. Then I started reading her tweets and well, I stopped liking her. Now of course I know that girl hate is a bad thing and I don't hate her, I certainly don't dislike her because she's a girl. I dislike her because she says really horrible things to anyone who disagrees with her, people are allowed to disagree with you Caitlin! She makes really horrible jokes about AIDS and trans* people and when people call her out she calls THEM abusive. Then because lots of  her privileged, white feminist friends have been attacked on twitter she starts #twittersilence. Firstly she never spoke up when other feminists (who happened not to be white or her friends) were being attacked, secondly I don't think silence is the answer. That's what they want, they call them trolls but I refuse to. They're not trolls they're usually men. Not all men, but some men, horrible awful terrible men, not trolls. Trolls are cute with their fluffy blue and pink hair. I used to wear one as a necklace so I get really upset when people are mean about trolls.

I'm white so I have tons and tons of privilege, however I am Jewish (although I don't believe in god) so I've had some nasty things said about me. The most commonly used one at school was "Jude hora" which translates as "Jewish whore". Was I silent when I was called that? Was I fuck! Am I going to be silent now, or ever? AM I FUCK!!!!!!

Thursday, 1 August 2013

On making some awkward confessions.

So after a couple of heavier days on the blog I'm going to be a bit more light-hearted. Though most of you already know my dirty secrets, my guilty pleasures this is the first time I'm actually making a list. I like lists!! Then I can look at it all in sheer horror.

  • Korean Pop. Yes I know it's sexist and hyper masculine etc. but I just can't help it. I love it so much!!!!
  • McDonald's. Dirty deliciousness that has done horrible things to the world. I hang my head in shame.
  • Cheesy pop music. Oh heck, we all love this right?
  • Skins, Glee and all other "crappy" TV. I can't help it, I just can't.
  • Yaoi anime. That's boys love anime for anyone who doesn't know. Cute, drawn boys falling in love with each other. Often an older man/young man dynamic. Seriously, so cute but occasionally a little bit ehm, controversial.
  • Everything pink and fluffy. I may be a strong, grown woman but I love everything cutesy, sparkly, pink etc. If it's Kawaii I will love it!!!!
  • 80's teen movies. I don't think I need to explain.
  • Daily Mail online. I'm pretty sure I share this with everyone else I know.
  • Energy drinks. The cheaper the better, my particular favourite is the 35p value one from my local shop.
  • Beauty samples. They're just so small but somehow so fancy.
  • Stickers. Yes, fine, ok, I'm basically a child!
I think that's it.....for now!