Category Archives: rambling

To You, Gatley Lobster

Hey you, yes you, bloke over there yelling abuse at me.

These are my chips. They’re reasonable chips, wouldn’t even pass for a small portion back at George’s in Harringay. I earned them. I’ve only had 1 1/2 meals today. I’ve the right to eat what I like, and if I eat it while walking down the street because I’m hungry – that’s my prerogative.

I’ve the right to walk down the street doing whatever I like, so long as it’s legal, without harassment. When it boils down to it, this isn’t about me. This isn’t about what I eat or what I look like. This is all about you, oh lobster-coloured lout.

You must be really bored. I mean, you thought this interaction was so important that your mate had to slow the car down, you had to open your window all the way…just so you could flash lots of bright red skin at me and tell me what you thought of me. You’re that inarticulate I couldn’t catch most of it, to be honest.

The funny thing is, lobster of Gatley… I don’t really care what you think of me. I don’t need you to validate my existence. This evening you actually proved to me that I am a decent person. I’m a decent person because I have a life, I do good things, and I don’t do what you just did.

I hope you’re on your way to a great night out, by the way. I’d like to think one day someone will teach you about suncream. And treating people right.

Cards Forever

I love receiving post.

Inside me, awfully close to the surface, is that small child who would run down the stairs to check if the post had arrived. I knew there wouldn’t be anything for me, but I had to check. I memorised how all the different sorts of letters looked so I could tell what was inside. I could sort out what you needed to open just by looking at the envelopes. I’d be absolutely thrilled to receive a birthday card in September even though my birthday’s in May.

I’m still like that. I still race down the stairs, and feel bereft of my treat if it’s a bank holiday. I get all excited when an eBay order arrives after I’ve forgotten it’s coming. Companies like Qwertee, who put little packets of Haribos in all their t-shirt orders, make going through the post even more fun to me.

Receiving post validates me emotionally. Someone out there cares. Someone out there know I exist. When I have days with my chronic illnesses where I struggle to leave the house, it’s a tangible link with the outside world. It doesn’t have to be much at all – I collect postcards, and try to hang on to little things I’ve been given by friends. My parents will insist on getting me pastel pink birthday cards though. Ouch.

Yes, I do have friends. I don’t demand they all send me things in the post, though I love it when they do. Mostly my contact with people is emails, messenger apps, texts and phone calls (though telephone contact is ever more scarce these days). Online contact to me feels very useful, but not exactly tangible. Although I need it and utilise it, it will never be the same as receiving a physical thing.

Frequently now I hear people (or read their Facebook!) saying that sending cards is bad for the environment. I don’t deny this, and perhaps I am being selfish, but I need to think in terms of my health and what works for me. I don’t send as much post as I’d like, mostly because I’ve been blessed with a fairly illegible hand, but when I do I try to use recycled paper and expect recipients to recycle what they don’t keep.

Who can honestly say they do all the right things all the time?

Answers on a postcard,
Almadsfeika

How Not to Format an Email (and other news)

Hello all,

Sorry I’ve not taken the opportunity to write much recently. Since the last post (5 months ago!), I have finished a Creative Writing module at university and started on a Screenwriting one. This seems to translate into many pages of my messy handwriting – see below – and vast quantities of textbooks as well as paper everywhere; but far less typed-up writing. I’m just so busy. Anyway, there’s my excuse.

For comparative purposes, this is my handwriting c. Oct 2010, a year before I started at university:

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as opposed to my writing today:

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I blame university for making me write faster and sloppier…

Anyway, after starting at university I got involved in the Students’ Union (see http://birkbecklydia.wordpress.com/ eventually) and more recently found myself attending conferences and fairs relating to students, liberation campaigns, young people and other associated issues. One of these was an employability, education and enterprise fair for 16-30 year olds. I talked to a company there who are planning a similar local event next month. They took my contact details, and then sent me this – which purports to be an invitation to exhibit at and visit their event. I wouldn’t know that from trying to read this email though.

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The white bits are me erasing personal details.

Picking up after others, or, A Freegler’s Rant

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Things not to do when freegling your item (in no particular order):
1. Decline to provide your full address when making arrangements for freegler to collect. We of course have lots of time to get your postcode off the Internet.
2. Decline to exchange phone numbers. Address and email are fine, but it’s all fallible.
3. Not bother checking your emails regularly to make sure you’re clear on collection details.
4. Be v nasty to freeglers who collect your stuff. Ok, you’re giving it to them, but they’re the ones helping you out – collecting stuff you can’t be bothered to sort/ sell/ take to charity shop yourself. You aren’t the king of the castle, okay? Be polite.
5. Not answer the door when collector arrives, despite being able to hear them and your dog barking his head off.
6. Be out at agreed collecting time. It is not that hard to be in, or have someone else be there. Seriously.

If you manage to do three of these simultaneously, don’t be surprised when people don’t want to deal with you again. Or that everyone is annoyed, including you.

Happy Freegling!

Here I am

Hello. I’ve thought about establishing a more public and interactive web presence lately, rather than my livejournal. I still like and use my LJ but I think I ought to do something like this too. I have an old greatestjournal and a blogspot but neither of those get used much.  I’ve noted that plenty of non-LJers don’t actually bother to read people’s public entries on there, anyway, so thought this was a plan. I may well attempt to transfer various important things from my journal entries over the last 4 years onto here at some point.

Lydia