Thursday, 30 September 2010

Just As Beautiful

It's a new magazine. It kindof carries on from my post the other day. This is a magazine for plus size models. Well it's a magazine featuring plus size models that is for anyone. Apparently there will be no air brushing. And models will be between a size 14 - 20.

This is a bit hit and miss.

Did any of us really think photos weren't airbrushed and that these 'celebrities' wake up with porcelain clean skin and skinny waists and big boobs and no wrinkles. Nope. But inevitably some people did. The ideals these set gave women ridiculous standards to try to live up to. The Beauty Myth by Naomi Wolf should be inserted here I am sure.

Computer tampered pictures are never going to be something any of us can achieve. But it keeps women buying into the vast array of diets and products on the market, consumer power and all that.

14 - 20 - well 14 isn't big in my eyes and 20 well that could be and we don't want to flip to the other side and promote bad living.

No magazine can really show what it should - that it's not about the outer package, that the inner package is the really important bit.

But making a magazine for plus size models is yet again putting people in a box and being exclusive. Why not mix it up a little. Why not just use women that are representations of the average women - in size, shape and lifestyle.

It's not just the look that is fed to us but have you seen the sort of prices of outfits they put into magazines. The average Jo would have to save for about 6 months before they could afford just one item. This makes people feel inferior, that somehow they are not achieving things properly or that the size of their wage cheque is what is important.

Of course it is to a degree, we all need food and a roof over our heads and we all like nice things, but somewhere we've gotten lost. We have become the size of our posessions. We measure our success by what we own or where we holidayed last year.

I measure my success by whether I can go to sleep at night with a clean conscience.

But then I too am a hypercrite as some days I don't feel successful because I don't have the right job or the big fat pay cheque (but then I guess those things happen because I am only human and I can't really say sorry for that).

I ponder here, I ponder there

Sometimes I feel like my life is empty and without meaning. I never really understood why I thought like this as I have a job, I have hobbies, I have friends, I seem to be quite busy. So how can it be empty? How can it not have meaning? Most things have meaning – just on different levels.

What I realised was I was judging myself, against what or who I really don’t know. It’s not like I now a zillion high flying business people that have mega bucks and can afford to do just about anything they desire. Then we all know that even that can become empty and people just keep looking for more and more.

So maybe that’s it? Maybe I just have a natural curiosity about life that keeps be always looking for more and therefore never feeling like I have enough.

I don’t mean things either – the amount of things I have bugs me sometimes.

I think I worry because I rent and don’t own a house. But in today’s market that might actually be considered sensible. I don’t have children. But that’s not the bee all and end all of life and there’s still time yet. And I’ve always said I will never have children just because others are having them. I’ve not travelled much. But the way the world is going that is going to become the norm’ soon. Then I remember how a statistic showed a high number of Americans don’t own a passport and have never left their country. So maybe I’m not so odd.

What is it that I feel is missing then?

I know my social life is calmer but it can’t just be that can it? Even when I was out every night and had a big group of friends I still felt this sense of something not being right.

Maybe I am just too hard on myself.

Maybe someone out there is thinking wow if only my life could be more like hers. Maybe we are always judging, never feeling good enough or never thinking others are good enough. It’s good to keep questioning things but I need to learn to stop questioning myself.

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Let them eat cake!

So Mad Men is taking over the world is it? Changing fashion to the extent that ‘big’ women are in? By big of course I mean women with a bum and a tum and boobs, oh yeah that would be it you know how women are meant to look!

Before you hiss at me, I know that some women are naturally skinny no matter what they do. And they get little sympathy for that, although I know that it can be as distressing to not be able to put weight on as it can be to struggle to lose the weight. A friend of mine has always been skinny – she used to have abuse hurled at her in the street when she was younger. That really shocked me. That anyone could be so nasty as to try to damage someone’s self esteem like that and to care enough to worry but then we all seem to support the ridiculous examples set by the fashion industry.

I heard, ok I read the other day someone commenting that ‘models are thin’, it would be Victoria Beckham defending the size zero. The thing is most models are only thin because they are so young or because they don’t eat very much at all.

Now I am not saying every model is anorexic or a junkie but there have been enough reports out there to highlight the issues surrounding models and how many don’t eat or have been known to eat cotton wool soaked in water to fill them up and stories of models injecting cocaine in between their toes to keep them going without food.

Why do we celebrate this?

Why do these women or girls become what so many chase after, for the majority of us it’s unachievable fullstop, for many it is only achievable through very unhealthy means.

Is it a wonder that so many celebrities have fertility issues?

So many celebrities are racked with insecurities and ‘hidden’ drug addictions. The down fall of people like Lindsey Lohan and Paris Hilton highlight this plight and also the mockery that is made of the justice system.

If you or I had gone to jail and then been found with cocaine I am pretty sure a lot more would’ve happened to us than being refused entry to Japan.

If we had been released from jail and then failed a drug test so quickly we would not have been seen out shopping the next day.

But I digress. When did we decide to make the unhealthy something to be heralded and when did it become a popular tv programme that fashion has used as inspiration to decide that ‘big’ women are now ok. Why is it not just the fact that skin and bone in clothing is not ideal, is not healthy and is not the accepted norm? Why can we not herald the natural woman just because it makes sense?

The world of fashion confuses me. It irritates the crap out of me yet still I am interested in nice clothes and looking good. But I don’t starve myself for it. I don’t beat myself up for not being able to fit into the jeans of a child as an adult as pretty much that is what size zero and below is. I have never done a ‘fashion blog’ for this very reason, I find it hard to support an industry that is full of so many issues and so many troubled people, so many ridiculous ideals and the money…..when people are starving in this world it’s sick that someone can spend tens of thousands on one dress. It’s not a case of hating it because I can’t afford it. I really think there is something very wrong with encouraging women to make themselves ill to apparently look good. Bones jutting out of you is not a good look. Drug addiction is not a good look. We can enjoy and celebrate all these things without having to buy into the dangerous/nastier/seedier side of it.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Star Gazing

Now this is something I do whenever I can, which I guess means not that often in London.  I am fascinated by stars and planets and things but have never really explored it because, quite frankly, it makes my head hurt.  I can't get the concept that 'nothing existed before' how can nothing exist for one but also 'something' has to be there, and nothing can go on forever because there has to be something after it, even if it's just static space, and if it looped round on itself, well there has to be something after that loop, or outside of that loop rather.  Even if we really are all just being held up by Elephants on the back of a giant turtle, that turtle has to be walking in or on something and all around it has to be something AND AND AND AND AND.....pretty much until my head explodes.

But anything to do with stars fascinates me...I mean, come on, they twinkle! Which in itself is a beautiful word.

So I bought a book called Star Gazing by Linda Gillard and heaven forbid it's a romance novel.  I don't normally do such things.   But every now and then it's nice to have a total no brainer throw away book.  And I don't mean Mills & Boon type things, those just make me shudder and cringe, I mean chick lit that is funny and means to be.  But I knew this book wasn't going to be like it.  The lead character is a blind lady and that also intrigued me.  I am interested in learning about all different writing styles and like to try to understand all sorts of different people.  The book was cheap and I thought 'why not!'

Why not indeed.  Well, I am only about an 1/8th of the way through the book but there has already been some quite lovely descriptions thrown in.

(You can read more about the actual book here.)

I hope the author won't mind me copying out a few of her words here, I guess at the end of the day I am promoting her book so here goes.........

'You know, I sometimes wish we would all treat each other as if we were about to die.  Say all the things that should be said.  And not say the things that shouldn't.  It would be different, wouldn't it, if we could see death coming.'

A very interesting and I personally think, good point.  And one I will ponder about for the rest of the weekend for sure.

'Some people think conservation is about saving animal species.  Especially the cuddly ones.  They don't realise we're also trying to prevent the human race from committing suicide.  We're links in a chain.  The chain only works when we're all linked together.'

Another good point don't you think!

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Routine schmoutine

Now I know that a certain form of routine is pretty good for the soul and sometimes the routine of things is how people keep themselves going.  But there's also something I really don't like about routine.  I think it's that I get bored easily, so walking the same route to the shops can get really boring.  That's why I try to always carry my camera, or at least pretend I have it with me.  And no I don't mean I walk around taking pictures with my fingers, making a clicking sound.  I just mean I try to look for a photo in everything. 

I had to go to a post office depot yesterday and only had my phone with me.  I could've just pulled on my coat, braced myself against the wind and got the bus to the depot and get a bus back.  Instead, I gave my pass to D and walked to the depot, taking the long route back to where I was going through the local park.

You can just about work out the conkers that are slowly rippening, I wonder if any child still plays with such things?

This building is an old bank and is really pretty with ivy growing all over one side.  The light made it near impossible to photo but I actually prefered this shot anyway!

One of my old abodes!

The sign saying Staff yard makes me laugh, I imagine a big courtyard fenced off with a load of people tied up outside - just like the dogs have to be at the Cafeteria.

The dappled lighting really warped the photo - making me feel drunk.....I wasn't!!!

Then today I had to go out to get some fruit and veg' and some vitamins.  Again I could've just dived on the bus, gone to the place I wanted to and come home.  Boring chore done.  Instead I took my camera.

Can you see the sea yet?  (it's not actually there so don't bother looking too hard!)

And this lovely building is a pub.  You can worship at the alter also known as the bar.

And then I got the bus home, chores done in next to no time without feeling like a chore at all!

I can read, I can!

Yesterday the postman deliverd a book for me.  It's called 'Food for thought' and it's by Dr Vernon Coleman.

I knew it would give me some good tips on a healthy diet and also on of my brothers has a friend who developed ovarian cancer, she didn't agree with the modern approach to cancer treatment, which lets be fair is pretty bloody harsh, killing off everything in you, not just the cancer, anyway, she researched superfoods and followed quite a strict superfoods diet and she doesn't have cancer today.  So, that alone was going to be an interesting read for me.

I've done a post before about what goes into the meat we eat today and it's shocking.  Actually, it's pretty disgusting.  It's become quite common knowledge that the meat industry isn't just extremely unhealthy these days but that it's also damamging to the environment.  This book not only goes into this detail, but also the bad effects of microwaves, irradiation of food, tap's not all doom and gloom though - there is a very good guide in the book about vitamins and the fat content in food and some great recipes.

I actually would recommend everyone read this book as you will get something from it.  If you really don't care about what you are putting into your bodies, maybe you will care about the things that are being put out there as 'ok' and 'safe' for your children, grandchildren, generations to come.  There appears to many things that we use or consume that we are told is safe, but in reality the truth is that they are yet to get the proper data on what it is doing to us.  That's quite different to being 'safe' in my eyes.

"....too much decision making in our world is done in the interest of institutions and corporations - and business in general - rather than in the interests of individuals."

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Sometimes only a scream will do!

In rant mode so be warned!!!!

All over the papers and the news are stories of how this new government is going to make this cut and that cut and hold back on this and scrap that.  All the time they are saying that they are going to make sure the cuts are fairly distributed so everyone feels it not just the poor.  I have one thing to say to poop.  Total and utter crap.  All they are saying is 'it's because of the last government, this is the mess the last government left us....' blah blah bloody blah.  Now for starters it's a bad worker that blames his tools.  Don't tell me whose fault it is just tell me how you are going to fix it in a realistic way - and the way the British government is going is really not realistic at all.  It's raising taxes and cutting benefits making the poor poorer in every way possible.  Rent is going through the roof.  House prices are a joke.  Jobs are being cut left right and centre.  More and more people will be forced onto benefits which are already being cut.  People get iller the poorer they are and what do you know - the NHS is being cut.   A healthy diet is essential to keep someone at their best and not to drain NHS's resources more than they have to, so um yeah that's right the cost of food is going to go up - by lots and lots.  People are being told to grow their own food - um - yeah - ur WHERE? It's almost impossible to get an allotment unless you have a spare 100 years to wait around for your name to be numero 1 on the list of who gets the next space when Percy finally pops his clogs.  There isn't enough room to house the people we need to house let alone grow our own veg, which personally I think is a huge huge shame.  By making people's tax go up you give them less money to spend, by making the cost of everything really jump up you are robbing people of a decent life even more.  The incentive to work is pretty low anyway but if wages get so low with cost of living so high people are going to willingly join the dole queue rather than join the wage slaves.  Sad but true.  Banks are now saying that they are going to stop paying any interest to people.  So please Mr bank manager tell me why I should give you my money to use in your dodgy deals when I am going to get nothing for it?  It's well know these wbankers are the reason for the recession but it's ok we're going to employ a new head guy and give him about £11 million whilst demanding the public who have suffered totally and it wasn't their fault pays for this.  oh.  Ok then!

I hate being treated like I am really stupid.  And that is what I feel this government is doing.

Personally I trust no government and I trust no politician - but please - every last little thing is them saying oh it's not our fault it's the previous government - well maybe, just maybe the last government where cleaning up the last load of shite the conservatives dropped on this country!!!!!!

Then I see in the paper that some lady who was I guess suffering some serious issues from her husband passing away - well she spent 22 hours a day playing some facebook game.  Her children were found starving and their pet dogs were dead and rotting on the living room floor.

Two young people (how I loathe to use that word about them) were convicted of verbally and mentally abusing a couple of children - some of the abuse included bite marks on the childrens genitals.  They have been found guilty and charged to 3 years in prison!!!!!!!!!!!!! They will no doubt serve a third of that and the time in custody will be taken off so what does that mean a few days, weeks or months or totally ruining those few childrens lives?!?!?!!

Is there room to now to talk about the scandal hitting the Catholic churches - seriously if I start on that one this could go on forever....................

Sometimes this picture is how I feel.....sometimes!

What is this world coming to, I ask you!?

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Some days you just feel down or pissed off or misunderstood or you're running on empty or your head is just too busy and you have to walk and walk just to get some is one of those days.

So I took myself off, a few buses, a bit of walking and my camera.

The afternoon sun is still just a hint so the city looks quite far away and foggy and dramatic.

A little Narnia moment.....I can't help it everytime I see those lamposts my mind wanders.

Alexandra Palace.

Something about the mess and tangle but beauty of this sums up my mind.

The other side of Ally Pally.

Nice long tree lined paths that are empty always feel full or promise to me.

And so many of the leaves were heart shaped.

And then my tranquility was interupted, and my view became not so pretty!?!!

A short bus ride later and I was at Suicide bridge......can't think why it's called that!??!

Heading to Waterlow park.

Waterlow park - it feels abit like a dancing triffid!

Such lovely colours

Leaving Waterlow park....homeward bound.