I'm not really 42
Posted 5 Weeks Ago
My PS now says I'm 42. I'm really not: I blame Pastey though I'm pretty sure he blames me.
During the Manchester mini-meet (which was a hoot and a half) I mentioned to Pastey I couldn't edit my PS and I cried when it said I was 26. Pastey did his bit right there in the pub and mentioned what was going on was essentially impossible, which makes me feel pretty proud.
So I'm not 42 - not for another few years at least.
Latest reply: 5 Weeks Ago
Posted 6 Weeks Ago
Facebook is still going fairly mental over Thatcher's death and it's quite interesting to watch it ebb and flow between the left and the right. One point that is being made over and over is that it's not okay to welcome someone's death and it's raised some interesting things for me.
I think it is okay to welcome someone's death, I think there are people out there whose behaviour was so harmful that their deaths can only come as a relief for those who suffered because of them. I'm really stuck on the borderline with Thatcher as to whether I feel that over her - I think I'm mostly coming down on the side of 'no' but it's a close-run thing - but I know with absolute certainty there are people who I will unambiguously be happy to see dead.
Today has been quite interesting as it's almost been a test run for when my dad dies: I now have experience of someone I absolutely hate dying. When my dad goes (assuming he hasn't already - could have for all I know) I'll feel good, I'll feel relieved. I won't be popping champagne or anything, nor dancing on his grave, but I think I'll have a nice drink satisfied the world is a better place because he's no longer in it. I don't think that makes me a bad person and I don't think it's wrong.
Seeing all these people say you shouldn't celebrate death has really had me thinking. I'm not being arrogant or anything, but I can't help but feel they're just wrong and naive. I've wanted to say something but facebook is too public and I'd have made a show of myself. So I'm writing it up here, because I did need to write about it and properly think about what I'm thinking, feeling and writing. Plus you lot are already used to me making a show of myself
Latest reply: 6 Weeks Ago
The scream of time that lies behind me
Posted Jan 26, 2013
Apologies, this is probably going to strike a lot of people as rather self-indulgent but I've just been hit by one of those 'woah' moments.
Whilst looking for a CD-ROM with some pictures on, I found a CD I forgot I had, a CD a friend made for me on my first trip to his new place. Listening to the CD is bringing back a lot of crystal-clear memories of the trip (all of them good incidentally): I can remember what we did, what I ate (mostly cereal and pizza), I can remember meeting a guy I ended up in a fairly substantial relationship for the first time, I can remember my friend meeting the woman he's still with and I can remember it all as if it was pretty recently.
The thing is, the trip was nearly exactly 9 years ago (9 years on Tuesday to be precise), I was in my first year of Uni and recovering from my first set of Uni exams. It seems bizarre that I can have such clear recollections of an event such a long time ago (even weirder, I've just checked and there's a record of it on here). I still haven't got my head around the idea that I'm nearly 30 and some of my best memories come from a decade ago.
It's also made me realise I've just missed my ten-year dnanniversary: I joined Talk Buffy on 23rd January 2003. Can't remember exactly when my first hootoo post was but it was roughly May/June time that year so I'm coming up on a decade here.
Man I'm getting *old*.
Latest reply: Jan 26, 2013
Posted Dec 8, 2012
I've just seen Z's thread asking for Christmas memories, so here's my best/worst/first/last Christmases.
First one I can properly remember is when I was 5 or 6 and being unable to sleep, getting panicked Father Christmas wouldn't visit because I wasn't asleep. My mum ended up running out of patience and being honest with me, making me the first one of my siblings to find out. Found out about the tooth fairy at the same time.
Worst was Christmas 2006 - the last one I spent with my aunt: after graduating from Uni I'd decided to try reconciliation with my mum and older brother and that included spending Christmas together as a family. Bad enough on its own, since the reconciliation was pretty much doomed to fail, but we had the extra problems of my teenage sister being pregnant, me failing the PGCE down in Exeter/Cornwall and being in the middle of breaking up with my boyfriend. Fairly inevitably, on Christmas Eve a row kicked off between myself, my mum and my elder brother. Despite promising not to, my mum had got roaringly drunk (it turns out you can't trust an alcoholic not to drink - who knew?) and starting making nasty comments about my boyfriend and gay folk in general and my elder brother decided to take a swing at me which resulted in him being thrown across the room and into the kitchen (things had changed since the last time he'd tried to knock me about).
End result was I grabbed my stuff, chucked it into my rucksack, swing my leg over my bike and rode from Liverpool to Manchester. Got to the boyfriends (empty - he was with his folks) house just after 1am on Christmas Day, went to bed and didn't resurface until late that evening. That Christmas Eve was the last time I had any contact with my mum or elder brother and the last time I spent Christmas with my family.
Last Christmas was pretty fun: since 2006 I've spent most Christmases on my own, with only a couple of exceptions, but last year was the first time I enjoyed it. Previously I'd gone all out to avoid Christmas because of the bad memories (December in general is/was a bad time for me: I was put into care in December when I was a teenager, a result of my elder brother trying to kill me) and I was always deeply miserable and lonely. Last year I did it differently: I planned ahead and made sure I had some stuff to do. Made my favourite food for Christmas dinner and tried to make it something I enjoyed rather than something I thought I should be doing and it worked.
Best Christmas, without a doubt, was 3 years ago with my two best friends. I'd broken my wrist slipping on ice a few days earlier and they decided I couldn't possibly be alone and had me over. For the first time in my life I had a properly white Christmas, with deep snow all over. We took the dog out for a long walk in the snow, which was wonderful, and then spent the afternoon in the pub playing board games whilst Christmas dinner was being cooked. Then it was dinner, Doctor Who (which sucked that year but you can't have everything) and general merriment. My mate invented a festive cocktail so my memory after dinner is somewhat hazy.
This year I'm off to the foster folks, which will be interesting. Really quite looking forward to it, which isn't something I say about Christmas very often.
Latest reply: Dec 8, 2012
Posted Nov 8, 2012
I went to a humanist funeral this afternoon: I generally avoid funerals because I find them quite harrowing and unpleasant but I was asked to support a mate, as it was his best mate being buried and he didn't want to face it alone.
It was a humanist ceremony and for the first time ever, I found myself thinking "This is what I want when I go". There was some lovely soothing stuff about how hurts will heal and how grief is both the proof and the price you pay for real love. The volunteer from the British Humanist Association who was delivering the ceremony then read out a poem which has really stuck with me: it was about reading a headstone on the grave, seeing the date of birth and the date of death and the dash separating them, and looking at what that dash meant, the life it abbreviated. She then talked about the story of this persons dash: she'd chatted the friends and family of the deceased and delivered it as a narrative with some people standing up and giving their own anecdotes.
It sounds quite cheesy, but it was actually really affecting and warm, the volunteer had clearly spent a substantial amount of time talking with the bereaved and knew the story very well: it didn't seem like she was doing something by rote, with just the names changed, as it has felt like at other funerals I've been to. It was really personal and comforting, encouraging people to think good memories of the guy who died.
The atmosphere as it ended was quite telling: it was sombre and there were people crying (naturally) but there was an undertone of laughter and happiness. It helped that it took place in a bright, spacious room and the windows looked out across the river to the hills beyond (I do love living in Yorkshire).
I'm not quite as angrily anti-religion as I used to be, but the humanist nature of the ceremony meant I could relate to it a lot better. It was much more honest: there were no false promises that the dead person 'was in a better place' or mendacious allusions to a merciful god, instead there was honest talk about how the grief would hurt but it would pass and that by holding fast to others, you can keep the darkness at bay.
I barely knew the guy who died - he was an occasional drinking buddy - so maybe it'd be different for a proper mourner but I found it really comforting. For the first time ever, I found a funeral to be helpful.
Latest reply: Nov 8, 2012