Tuesday, November 22

Always Look on the Bright Side of Life

I’m not always the cheeriest person around, and I know my outlook isn’t constantly optimistic. But I can’t help but notice there’s a lot of negativity out there. I’m only going to draw on one example, and it may seem insignificant but it’s something that caught my attention today.
Earlier, I looked up the actor who played Jacob in Hot Tub Time Machine, knowing I’d seen him in something else. (I now know his name is Clark Duke and I’ve recently seen him in Greek.) As I scrolled down his IMDB profile, I saw the normal panel of lists that users have created. Normally they have titles like “10 Hottest Actors”, “Most Underrated Actors” or “My favourite Actors”, with the actor you’re looking at being included on them all. And yeah these titles were there, though I scarcely acknowledged them before my eyes were drawn to the third one; “Actors I Don’t Like”.
Somebody out there has taken it upon themselves to list every actor they don’t like and stick it on the internet. I don’t find it surprising; there are plenty of people out there who think their opinion on celebrities is truly valued. I suppose I find it disappointing.
I don’t like every actor or comedian or presenter I see, but I by no means have a mental ranking of who it is I dislike the most. And more importantly, I respect the fact that they’re only doing their job, and often it’s a character or a persona that I am passing judgement on. I have no idea what the real person is like and if I met this celebrity then I might find I like them. I like to think my opinion is open to change. Often I’ve only seen one film or show with somebody in before I decide I don’t like them. Although I may not be too enthusiastic, I will be willing to watch a second and see if I prefer them in that. I have no intention of sustaining the type of negativity that would make someone list people they don’t like as opposed to people they do. Surely that can only lead to bitterness? I for one prefer something sweet. 

Friday, July 22

Unexpected inspiration

There's a girl I follow on Tumblr who, every now and then, will post poems that she's written. I admire her for that. I rarely get round to writing poetry nevermind finishing it to a standard where I'm willing to post it somewhere like Tumblr. The thing is, I only read snippets of her work before becoming annoyed by it. It's always too abstract. After just one year studying creative writing at university I've had it drilled into me that you need to have concrete images and to pin point things well. Otherwise you're living in the abstract and it all seems too vague. I'm not sure how old she is, a couple of years younger than me I think. She's probably writing just as well as I was at her age so I can't help feeling bad for criticising her.
I have realised though, her poems are very good at making me want to write some poetry myself. This is a tricky thing to do. I can sit and read poems by amazing writers or hear the most beautiful song lyrics, and although I feel poetic afterwards I will rarely write anything. Why? I dare say its because I don't feel like I could better the things I have just read or heard. But reading a poem or a piece of prose which you don't find that great, or which you think needs some fine tuning, can be really inspirational. It makes you want to shout "No! It should be more like this!" and create your own piece.
And I dare say some of you are inspired by this piece of writing in the very same way.

Thursday, July 14

On the train again...

This is my first post in a couple of months. And if you're reading this then you're my first reader in a couple of months. And if you're good enough to leave a comment then you're the first to do that on this blog ever.
Over the past month I've done a fair bit of travelling. Between the 20th and the 29th of June I was in Romania. Got there by plane and travelled to a few different places there by train. We also hopped in and out of taxis. And over the past week I've gone from home to Southend to Portsmouth and back home. With some brief time in the car whilst at each. And I've decided on my favourite mode of transport. The train! Argue if you wish but I really do think it's the best way to travel.
Reason 1 - There is no terrifying take off like with a plane.
Reason 2 - From what I gather of everyone moaning about insurance and paying for petrol, it's a relatively cheap way to travel. And if you're going by train rather than car you don't get asked to give people lifts, bonus!
Reason 3 - You can chill out on the train. I for one can sit and read or write on a train but I couldnt in a car or on the bus because it'd make me feel sick. And I wouldn't do that on a plane because I'd be too busy worrying about stuff I don't need to worry about. Like dying.
Reason 4 - In fairness, they're pretty good. People moan about them being late or cramped (on the tube particularly) but really they're a good transport system. They're generally pretty reliable and clean with nice staff. I don't see why people go on about how awful the train system is in this country.
Reason 5 - (and this is the best argument) Trains are more amusing. Whether it's loud but hilarious men talking on your way to Portsmouth or funny looking man opposite you on the tube there's generally something to amuse you on a train journey. And to help prove my point I give you a picture I took on my way home from Luton. What I want to know is, where's cup B got to?

Monday, May 2

No Diggity

A few weeks a go I was disheartened to realise it was exactly 5 months until my birthday. Only 5 months left of being a teenager, and then adulthood awaits. I know that generally I am mature and sensible, but being a teenager means I have an excuse for the sessions of imaturity and silliness. Turning 20 would take this away.
But then I spent an evening in the pub with some friends. We played pool. We found some army men and hid them all around the room. I got a digger out of the vending machine and we were delighted to find you could drag it back and then it would propel itself across the pool table. I went home happy. Thinking about it now, if this sort of childish behaviour makes me smile, then so be it. If I find amusement in thinking the phrase "no diggity" when I look at a photo my new digger, what's the problem? Silliness can make you happy and I'm not going to let a birthday take that away from me.

Monday, April 4

Arrr Jim Lad

I have a tip for any train users out there. If you must travel in the morning, or early afternoon, and you were a little bit tipsy the night before, there is only one thing to make your journey bearable. Pirate water! Of course at first I was worried it meant pirate wizz. But in all honesty, you can't help but feel epic when carrying a bottle of pirate water. It made me smile each time I looked at it. Plus I was incredibly dehydrated thanks to the slight (very, very slight) hang over situation.

Wednesday, March 30

Use your loaf!

Well would you look at that?! I can cook! These are my two loaves of cheese and onion bread. It's one of the nicest breads I've ever eaten. True, I cheated, it's out of a packet. But I did all the mixing and the kneading. And I put it in the oven. Some would say that's the most important part! I know it sounds easy but last time I made bread like this I managed to get it wrong. I obviously didnt knead it properly and so it didn't really rise. It just spread across the tray and made a really flat loaf. (Hence the foil i put in to seperate them.) However this time time it went really well and I will definitely be making it again.
And don't worry. I realise this is yet another post about food. I make no apologies. I'm just incredibly proud. I'm also impressed that I am avoiding all puns to do with "my baps" or having a nice "pair of buns".

Sunday, March 27

Walking in a winter wonderland

Boxing day, me and Lewis visited a snowy Bradgate Park with some film cameras. Mine was an old Conway Popular Model I had found in the attic over the summer. Neither of my parents know whose it is, but Mum thinks it might have been her Dad's camera. Lewis had something a bit fancier but that's what you expect from an actual photographer. Finally I have the brilliant results to show you, thanks to Lewis' (cosiderably delayed) developing skills. These are the photos from my camera, plus two from Lewis' (the ones of me).
I don't claim to be a photographer, but I do enjoy it and after seeing these I am very much in love with my Conway and shall be using it again when I get home. And after that I will be stocking up on film!

Wednesday, March 16

A poem for Wesley

I read about a competition,
It made me think of you.
A chance to have work published
In an issue of GQ.

If I won and didn't tell you,
I'm guessing that you'd see
An article you really like
Then spot that it's by me!

Saturday, March 12

Shreddie, steady, go.

What is the ultimate problem with variety pack cereals? Obviously the size. It's not just children who enjoy the option of choice in the morning! But with a stroke of genius I combatted the issue this evening. The box of honey shreddies and the box of normal shreddies united to make one massive portion of cereal. At first I was excited with the prospect. Although when I was confronted with the bowlful I was a little daunted. Why did I think this was a good idea? Turns out, I thought it was a good idea because it was! However gigantic it looked, it was just the right size and killed my hunger for the evening. An impressive feat for a meal never mind a snack!
I realise that, so far, 2 thirds of this blog has been dedicated to food. It's showing me just what sort of things gets my mind rolling.  Anything edible.

Wednesday, March 9

Chica chica boom chic

I have improved my shopping skills! With determination to be healthy I arrived at Asda with a list surprisingly inclusive of fruit and veg. And I managed to stick to it. Normally I'm deterred by the harassment of picking the most yellow bananas, the least dented pepper, the longest dated salad and the most appetizing grapes. But today I battled on and even ended up with a mango! I am thoroughly tempted to make some form of hat and dance like Carmen Miranda.
And of course this fruit and veg spree shall assist my decisions for lent. Not only will the crisps and ice cream go, but so will the chocolate. It's difficult to admit such things, but yes, I shall be avoiding chocolate for the whole of lent.
Although the Nutella is already giving me funny looks when I open the cupboard.

Wednesday, March 2

Billy Idol and the ambush

I should be careful when I'm walking home in the dark. I'm not scared of the dark itself, wound up about drive by shootings or worried I get abducted by aliens. More so, I'm worried when I look up and see a stranger, silhouetted by a street light, coming towards me. And what's the first thing I think when I see a man coming towards me, whose facial features I cannot distinguish, just the glowing halo of hair? What do I think?
"With that hair, he looks like Billy Idol."
I mean, seriously?
When I get back onto campus I take a slightly longer route that curves around the lake and keeps me off of the mud. The path runs next to the big pond and is over shadowed by trees. Again, this in itself doesn't scare me. But one noise tells me my mistake. One noise shows me where I've gone wrong. Not only have I mistaken a student in the streetlight as an 80's icon, but I have taken a route home, in the dark, that lines me up perfectly for a goose attack.
One honk says it all.