It’s funny how hearing a song can transport you back to a whole other time period in your life and bring flooding back a whole load of memories you had long forgotten. It can make even the cold-hearted feel sentimental. Sometimes, it can just remind you of a place or a person but it is the song and its association with them that has the potential to send you on that little trip down memory lane, despite all the BEWARE! and DO NOT TRESPASS! signs that linger at its beginning.

Some people love to revisit the past, I used to do it often, but I just don’t really see the point anymore. If anything it more often than not provokes questions instead of providing answers, often ones that we cannot answer and left behind for a reason. Don’t you ever think these memories have been forgotten for a reason and are best left in the padlocked chest, just out of reach at the back of our minds?

I hate delving into the past because it can make you long for something you once had, someone you once knew or someone you once were. Either way, it brings with doing so a sense of finality and harshness that comes with knowing that you can’t always get what you want, now more than ever. I don’t know what else is out there that may or may not trip me up in the future and bring me right back to the things I don’t care to revisit. All I know is that I’d rather they didn’t.

So, the whole truth is, I wish I could control how often my mind wanders to the distant past, which is admittedly much less frequent than previously, and I wish I could conceal their impact on me. Certain things aren’t meant to be remembered and certain things were always going to be forgotten. I wish I had found a way to stop caring about the past when it comes knocking, and sometimes I think I don’t care, but there are particular things I will always care about and there are things that, silly as it sounds, when I stop caring about will upset me because I no longer care. It seems like sometimes in life you just can’t win, huh?

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I cannot stand people that publicise their every waking thought over social networks. That may be okay on Facebook but that is why I don’t use Facebook. Now, the people that I was avoiding having to listen to on Facebook are getting Twitter and I’m too polite, although it may not seem it, to tell them to shut up and sort their life out. It drives me mad!

Do I care who you fancy this week? No. Do I care that your boyfriend cheated on you and now you feel the need to post tweets openly talking about it to people you barely know who didn’t even know you had one in the first place? No. I’m not heartless, if someone came and spoke to me about it I would be sympathetic and I would care. What I don’t understand is the urgent need to inform all of your followers and friends. If you need a place to vent get a diary or a private blog instead of making everyone feel uncomfortable or irritated by your lack of ability to privatise certain aspects of your life, by which I mean don’t Tweet or write Facebook statuses about them! It’s a completely different story to pick up a phone and call a friend, they know you and will probably make you feel much better than a tweet or status to god knows how many people. So why do people do it? Is it because they feel like they have no one to talk to? Is it because they are just attention seeking? I don’t now their reasons, I just wish they’d stop.

I know I may sound a bit insensitive but these people just puzzle me and I’ve heard other people say much worse about the people that do these things. Another thing I don’t understand is people who literally seem to tweet what they have just done. It’s like “I just ate a banana and I liked it.”. Wow. That’s brilliant. I really care! Could you just tell me that story again? Cool story bro. No. If all you have to do at this moment in time is tweet something as pointless and meaningless as that then you shouldn’t even be allowed the internet. Now go out and get yourself some friends for the love of God.

Another thing I can’t stand are those people that make out like they love themselves and they are the dog’s bollocks regardless of whether they are joking and actually insecure or those who genuinely believe it. It’s like why do you feel the need to “big yourself up” to your friends and followers? It just makes you look like a complete dick who has a stick so far up their own arse they’re charging it rent. It’s just like Oh for god’s sake get a grip and get a decent personality or AT LEAST learn the social networking etiquette that is unspoken but seems like for many people it needs to be made into a class.

So, the whole truth is, certain people on social networks piss me off and maybe it is just people my age or a little younger that do it and when people get older they grow out of it. I don’t know. All I know is that it is frustrating as hell and makes me blog like a complete bitch. I may be just being picky and it doesn’t bother other people but more and more people seem to do it and I just don’t understand their motivation.

I speak as a girl who once adored teenage movies like 10 Things I Hate About you…until I realised pretty much all of them are the same! It’s like, once you have seen one you have seen them all! You could almost say they follow a form of criteria….

5 ways to make your Teenage movie a success (by which I mean almost identical to all others apart from a slight twist on it) :

1) Base it around an unlikely, but obviously going to end up together, couple. Sometimes, on a rare occasion, mix it up and do the unexpected. Although, maybe your audience just isn’t ready for that…

2) The plot must be simple, easy to follow and the characters must be at least considered likable – no one likes it when the irritating slut gets the guy. Just saying. Now and again we do like a good old bitch but you have to be careful with how you play it in a way that still enables the audience to engage with them – most likely achieved with some kind of past which “justifies” their behaviour.

3) It should be set in an American “high school” because there has NEVER been a good British teenage movie. It’s like we’re not even allowed to attempt it! Also, in “Wild Child” the main character was American AND she was sent to a British Boarding school where all of the girls act like snobs. I don’t even know of any boarding schools and I live here!

4) One of the members of the main couple has to do something horrible, which the audience have most likely been in on the entire film and the partner has found out, which OBVIOUSLY acts as a turning point in the film where the future of the couple is “uncertain”.

5) The couple MUST reunite and, preferably, a cheesy and feel good pop song will play to add to that perfect, unattainable, unrealistic and TOTALLY misleading ending.

Congratulations! You’ve done it! You’ve brainwashed a teenage girl into thinking that everything will work itself out, one day you’ll Prince will come, every cloud has a silver lining bla bla bla. Now, this girl has completely unrealistic hope for the future until she realises that her life isn’t a cheesy film that often lacks originality and thought.

However, there have been a few films that have been pleasantly surprising. For example, Easy A. I LOVE this film and I know many people that do – all with varying taste in films. It isn’t your stereotypical film and I think it deals with pressures and stereotypes that other films may not experience in much detail, other than separating “the nerds” and “the populars”.

So, the whole truth is, most teenage films are the same but maybe it’s because it’s what we want to see. Maybe we want to see the idea of a knight in shining armour coming bounding in on his white horse to save the day (bleurgh) because a lot of people may secretly want that to happen to them, even if they do deny it. The thing is, when you grow up these films become less appealing and almost frustrating. This isn’t to say that after a bad day I never come home, curl up in bed and watch one of these movies – because I totally do. It just means that my opinion of them has changed and they often make me cringe. However, sometimes the cringe worthy moments and unrealistic endings are what makes them enjoyable. How awful would it be to watch a film where everyone ended up miserable and nobody got what they wanted? It would be severely depressing! Although every now and again it is nice to watch a film where everything doesn’t end like a fairytale, sometimes I guess we need to believe that fairytales can happen to fill the gaps in our lives. I don’t believe in fairytales because I don’t believe in perfection.I believe that no one and nothing is perfect and to convince yourself that someone is perfect is a mistake that will only lead to your own disappointment. Perfection isn’t pretty because the jealousy of others would only cast a shadow on it. In life who wants perfection? Perfection is boring, orderly and reliable. Real is interesting, exciting and everchanging. Real is who we are and who we decide to be for ourselves not for others. If you’re obsessed with perfection then I feel sorry for you because perfection is something you’ll never consider yourself to attain. This doesn’t mean you are unworthy of it or that you are a failure it just means that you’re human.

Don’t stress, stay real, keep watching but don’t ever stop challenging what you see and learning from it.

 

 

So I’ve got my five offers now and the reality has set in than in just over six months I’ll be heading off to University. I don’t know how to feel about this. Before, I would have been excited but now I’m far from it. A year ago I was screaming out for a fresh start and now I’ve only just become comfortable in my own skin. Now, not only am I a daughter, sister, step-daughter, future sister-in-law, I’m an aunt and I’m loving it.

Nothing quite brings comfort and happiness like those adorable looks of bewilderment or smiles that melt your heart and chase your troubles to the far away corners of your mind. Those smiles are like an acknowledgement that you are doing something right and, when nothing or no one else offers this, it can be exactly what you need to remind yourself and enable yourself to just keep calm and carry on.

I’m going to miss that.

I’m going to miss her first words.

I’m going to miss her first steps.

I’m going to miss so many things while I’m away.

I’m going to miss my Mum – sometimes my best friend and other times my worst enemy.

I’m going to miss my sister and how far she has come.

I’m going to miss seeing the smile on my sister’s face whenever her little girl does something adorable – most of the time.

I’m going to miss the way my sister and her future husband look at each other.

I’m going to miss my home where I grew up and where so many memories lie.

I’m going to miss the comfort of my own bed when I’m upset.

I’m going to miss sitting where I laid my cat to rest.

I’m going to miss having sleepovers with friends.

I’m going to miss joking around because we can.

I’m going to miss so many things when I’m gone.

Most of all, I’m going to miss the sense that I belong.

There is something about how an actor or actress steps onto a stage and completely transforms his or herself into someone else that is mesmerising.  It never fails to astonish me to see friends and acquaintances take on a role so unlike themselves and pull it off without a hitch. It is incredible! It is nice to see acting that I consider to be real, honest, important and influential and how it affects an audience.

It is interesting and thought-provoking performances that explore controversial issues and approach sensitive issues that are so powerful and create an intense atmosphere in which you can almost hear the cogs turning in the heads of fellow members of the audience.

There is always that anticipation in the air beforehand and that feeling of whether everything will go to plan or whether there will be surprises along the way. Will anyone forget their lines? If so, will they recover? You have not seen support like I witnessed tonight at an A-Level drama coursework performance for friends and family. The turnout was great and the applause and positive feedback was plentiful. Actors and actresses surprised the audience with their characters and their emotional depth, comical tendencies and outspokenness.

Being able to act to the standard seen tonight is an amazing gift and so many people underrate real, old-fashioned acting. I’d much rather go and see a live performance than some typical rom-com at the cinema that is cheesy and predictable.

The whole truth is, I wish I could act, I really do because it is an incredible talent! The truth is there are so many overpaid actors and actresses that don’t even compare to the talent, commitment, effort and heart at the centre of each and every performance seen tonight. It is not often that I really look at my friends as actors and actresses, but tonight they were stars.

The only thing it has made me address is how often they may act in real life. Where does the acting end? Do they assume a character in life as well that is more about their own or social construction than their real identity? I’m sure some do. Then again, I’m sure many people alter their behaviour based on expectations. Does that mean we are all actors and actresses surrounded by other actors and actresses? What is real and what is fiction? Do any of us really know?

I don’t understand why from a young age we are programmed into thinking that every story has a happy ending, just like every cloud has a silver lining. I wouldn’t consider myself a pessimist, though some of you may disagree, I consider myself a realist. The truth is, the endings we see in fairytales just aren’t real and in life you can’t just wait for everything to work itself out because it won’t.

I understand that when they are at such a young age we want to protect our loved ones from things that are harmful and that they may not understand, like war, because we want to protect and prolong the stage of innocence we all begin out in. The thing is, why do we feel the need to make them believe in fairytale endings with princes and princesses? What is this teaching them about the world? It is completely fake and disappointing for those who grow up and realise that life is far from a fairytale. I understand this may seem harsh but I just feel like we are told too many lies as children and that when we do grow up we either end up feeling unprepared for or unsatisfied with the real world, a world where no one has a fairy godmother and where the Knight in shining armor never turned up.

In life you can’t simply wait around for someone to come and save you or to whisk you away into the life that you always wanted for yourself. In life you have to forge your own path and save yourself because you are your own being and only you can make your dreams come true by acknowledging them and reaching out to achieve them for yourself. I don’t understand people that choose to remain naive to the real world and refuse to acknowledge that the world is full of imperfections and no one is truly perfect like these fairytales make out. 

Sam Keen once wrote “Love isn’t finding a perfect person. It’s seeing an imperfect person perfectly.”

I believe Sam Keen was a very intelligent man for saying this! I feel like this is such an honest statement and to me it reflects something far more special than perfection. What is perfection? Does it exist? If so, it is DEFINITELY subjective to each individual. More than anything, I know that I don’t want perfection. Do any of us? Perfection is boring, it gives you nothing to strive towards.

So, the whole truth is, fairytales aren’t real and we can pretend all we like that everything will work itself out and you’ll meet your prince, but it isn’t true. Fairytales don’t show children that hard work is necessary to succeed and that a flick of a magic wand won’t fix everything. Fairytales don’t commend us for our differences and they certainly don’t show what happens after the “Happily Ever After”. You might say it is self-explanatory, but is it? I don’t think so. I think the reason that they don’t extend on this “Happily Ever After” because there is no such thing. You can be happy but for “Ever after”? I don’t think so. Everyone has rough patches but working through them is what makes them stronger and what makes us all different. Our stories aren’t generic like fairytales they are real and varied and they are all different, I think this itself is amazing. In these stories we have our heroes and our villains, just like in fairytales, but it is far more than this. It isn’t fiction, it’s fact and that itself is pretty amazing. One day you may tell your children your own story and that will be more interesting and valuable to them than any fairytale.

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”- Maya Angelou

 We get told to “express ourselves” all the time and maybe we would a little more if we weren’t so restricted and afraid. Everywhere we go there are things that are acceptable and unacceptable which make us more and more afraid to do something that may result in us being seen as a bad person. The things is everyone has their own standards, or in some peoples’ case a lack of them, which we hold ourselves and others to and this will never be the same for everyone.

A lot of people are afraid to be themselves and are more interested in being an alternate version of themselves that they feel appeals more to people their own age, or even on a wider scale. I know this, because I used to be one of them. I used to care more about what other people thought of me than what I thought of myself and there came a point when I had to stand back from the person I’d become and say that enough is enough. The truth is we all lose ourselves, it is a part of growing up that only we can alter and nobody else. Some people never realise it, some don’t know how to go back or grow from it and some people are so scared of being themselves that they will just simply do nothing. But tell me, what do you hope to achieve by selling yourself out completely? Popularity? The people who are really your friends are the ones you already have! They like you, and even maybe love you, because of who you are and not how you think people want you to be. Isn’t that enough?

The people that stand up for their beliefs and never compromise them are the people who should be admired, maybe even if we don’t agree with them, because they are the people who are going to have fewer regrets than the people who do. People might make fun of them because what they do or say isn’t considered “cool” by the majority of people but I think the fact that being seen as “cool” isn’t particularly their biggest concern is what actually makes them cool. Maybe that isn’t a particularly cool thing to say but to me it is the truth.

So really I guess what I am saying is that we are who we are, we believe what we do and we like what we like.  None of these things are bad! These are the things that make us who we are and once you realise that then maybe you will understand that being liked isn’t so important when you don’t even like yourself. Let’s face it, there will always be people that don’t like you but what does it matter? If they don’t like you then that should be it, why should you be so desperate to gain the approval of someone who will probably mean little to you in the future and, even if they like the new you, how long can you be the version of yourself that they want you to be?

So, the whole truth is, it is best to be true to yourself than to be true to someone else’s creation of yourself. So, don’t be judgemental, you hate it when people judge you. Don’t be scared, there will always be people who love you for who you are and who will protect you from those who don’t. Don’t be fake, people will see through your act sooner or later and they will like you less for it. But, most importantly, don’t hide from the world who you are because you were born to stand out.