Tag Archives: University

十六,十七

Something you always think ‘what if’ about. 

Something you are proud of. 

~

The what if thing is really easy.

When I was little I always said I was going to be a vet when I grew up. This ambition was very simply premised on the fact that I adored animals, and found all of them fascinating without exception. I also liked how they never required me to be polite and come out from behind the sofa to say things to people; things like ‘Hello’, and whatever the appropriate answers might be to the questions *insert relative’s name here* might care to ask me by way of small talk.

Anyway, the point is that I lacked confidence. Everyone who tried to instil it in me over the years must ultimately have failed, because I still lack confidence. Painfully. While such character flaws are mostly acceptable in doe-eyed, cherub-blonde four-year-olds, they are a little less forgivable in  tired-eyed twenty-one-year-olds (with hair of god-knows-what-colour).

But up until the point where it started to matter, I aced everything I needed to ace in order to keep my early ambitions a possibility.  Then for some reason I lost all faith in my ability to continue my education in the sciences, and chose to study English, History, Classics and Philosophy to A Level. Which in turn killed all potentially lucrative options when it came to possible University courses. Despite the fact that I went on to do well in all of those things and my eventual university degree, I now very much doubt that I will ever become a Veterinary Surgeon. I lament my decisions from time to time… vets make a lot of money; I’m sure that’s almost worth the horror of having to stick your hand up cows’ backsides every now and then. Having made the choices I did back then, and followed them up in the way that I have, I often wonder nowadays if I’ll ever be able to make money out of doing anything I vaguely enjoy. Not to mention the fact that the confidence has waned still further as a result; simply not being terrified of anything I might possibly decide to do seems like an unattainable Holy Grail nowadays. I’ve backed myself into a corner so that I pretty much can’t avoid living a lie, and I’m tearing my hair out in my efforts to figure out which lie would be best to go for.

~

Something I’m Proud Of.

Hmm.

My little sister loves me?

.

Here is a picture of a stumpy dog and its owner walking in the sea at Filey:

~xx~

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Día Nueve

How Important You Think Education Is. 

(Oh my, How Dull…)

Ok. My views on this subject at this particular moment in time can be summed up very briefly as;

It’s so, so much better to be educated than not… but.

But to get to where you want to go, you have to be the right kind of person. Own the right kind of mindset. Maintain the right outlook on life. Be strong, be confident, be self-assured. Be assertive, be prepared to put yourself first and do whatever it takes to get what you want (Within reason. No, fuck it; without reason). Be charismatic; win people over, make them fall for you.

I wish school had taught me that stuff.

I mean, I sailed through everything school threw at me. The same with University, kind of (although I very narrowly missed out on excelling there because my soul fell apart a couple of feet from the start, and then a couple of inches from the finish line). But one way and another, I never really had to try all that hard to do well. Nothing was very difficult. Time-consuming sometimes, yes, (frustrating for me,  impatient and restless as I have often been) but not too difficult in any other sense. I enjoyed exams because I knew how to do them right. I hated essays, because I couldn’t bear to do them less than perfectly but always put off working on them until it was  too late to be able to ensure that they always were perfect; knowing how to do them just right was always a process that developed along the way, with time running out just a tiny bit short of that process’ completion. Infuriating.

And now I am struggling to get a ‘proper’ job, a graduate position to reflect my level of educational achievement, because I have zero people skills. People very simply scare the bejesus out of me, and I’m not very good at hiding my fear. They’ve decided I’m not what they’re looking for before I’ve opened my mouth to say hello to them. (Although to be fair I haven’t really tried all that hard yet, because I can’t seem to muster the enthusiasm to even complete the majority of the application processes for the kind of jobs I’m meant to be pining after. I haven’t really seen any jobs advertised that I could really get excited about the thought of doing for any significant portion of my life…)

But yeah. They won’t pick me, because I’m not confident, driven, ambitious, endlessly enthusiastic, tenacious, a natural born leader. It always takes a bit of time and a lot of acclimatisation to a setting and a bunch of people and a situation, for me to even begin to feel the first sparks of those kinds of characteristics igniting.

And nobody wants a girl with the potential to become a superstar; they want their superstar ready-made, cut-and-dried. Fully Fledged.  And there are plenty of people out there, people who think they are the dog’s bollocks (and maybe they are), who will convince the world that they are that ready-made wonderman/woman, and get to where they want to be. To where I will not get to be but would maybe want to be if only I had a damn clue what the Hell I wanted in life.

So (I’m not too sure, but) what (I think) I’m trying to say here is that yes you should pay attention in maths and English, kiddies. But the stuff you learn there will only get you so far; you have to be Superman with four times the ego and ninety-nine times the balls before you’ll get chance to become a real high flyer in today’s world.

And if you’ve been paying attention in maths and English, chances are you’ll have been fed the standard meritocratic bullshit about how your prowess in such activities means you should end up as one of those high flyers. So you will never be able to really and truly settle for anything lower, no matter how terrifying and harrowing the climb to bigger and better things might have to be for you.

They should spend more time teaching some of us not to be ourselves; because the ugly truth is that there are certain types of people who do not need to exist in today’s world. And if they should come to understand this fact then they’d better be prepared to be suffocatingly dissatisfied/lost/confused/self-loathing, or make a hasty metamorphosis of themselves.  Kill, or be Killed.

Instead, at my school we sang silly songs like this;

“Of all the things to be, I’m happy that I’m me,

Thankyou God I’m happy that I’m me.

I’m happy that I’m me,

I’m happy that I’m me,

There’s no-one else in all the world that I would rather be”

(While Wicked Witches slammed us for having feelings, and tried to defame our characters to our parents behind our backs).

Go on, throw some more inspirational quotes my way…

~xx~


Essentials In Life:

Someone To Love.

Something To Do.

Something To Look Forward To.

~

Thus read a plaque I saw in a tiny, crooked little gift shop in Boscastle, Cornwall, when on holiday there with my family 2 years ago.

(From where my mother acquired a gargoyle to add to the extensive collection of Green Men distributed around the external walls of our house).

 

I think I treat the people I love pretty badly, most of the time. Where this doesn’t make them disappear pretty quickly, my efforts to make up for my failures usually only end up making things worse – and making them disappear eventually instead. (I would add here that in my case the Someone to Love would probably have to be loving me back for me to be Happy. Not sure if everyone would agree there, but Heck I guess I’m just needy). Family can’t very easily disappear all too permanently and are more forgiving than other people, so I guess I’m managing about half for the first one.

[‘So if Heaven is where the good people go, Up There, (pointing) and Hell is where the bad people go, Down there (pointing) …where the Hell is Heck?’ asked once my eight-year-old self, of my ‘Hell is a swear-word’ Grandmother – thinking I was being so damn clever. I eventually came to the conclusion that Heck must be where bad animals go when they die].

 

My job is (very) part time, and I’m so useless at it – despite it being pretty much the most mind-numbingly simplistic job ever – that whenever I ask for more hours I’m generally offered about 4 more per week for 2 weeks in each month. (I’m a nice girl who means well and they don’t really want to upset me, but damn why am I so useless?)

I’m not complaining. Every little helps and all that. But the fact remains that there are 4 days in most weeks during which I have absolutely no obligation to do anything at all. My friends all live somewhere between pretty far away and really far away. I haven’t really made any friends at work, yet; I try, and small talk is mostly better than no talk, but being there still tends to make me feel pretty lonely. Even the old friends that aren’t all that far away are still far enough that visiting regularly takes its toll on my fuel tank and consequently my bank balance. I’m trying to keep some moneys safe so that moar university remains a viable option where my not-too-distant future is concerned. So my masses of free time these days, even when spent doing actual stuff, tend to be mostly spent alone. I need ‘Me-Time’ (and I hate that phrase) but not this much of it. Finding another job that would leave me with less of it is proving difficult, mainly because there don’t seem to be any available that I could really get excited about. I invariably get halfway through an application before realising that I could never find the enthusiasm required to convince an interviewer that I even really wanted the job, never mind showing I could actually be good at it.

Maybe I’m just being pathetic. Maybe I am just pathetic. Because I’m pretty sure I’m as terrified of change and as useless at people right now as I have been all my life. As for alternative mind-numbingly simplistic jobs, I would appear to be living in the actual middle of actual nowhere; there just aren’t any within a 30-mile radius, and I’m probably quite lucky to even have the one I’ve got. (I thank my lucky stars for my manager in York thinking I was ‘a really good kid’, and for my manager here thinking I ‘sounded nice on the phone’). I want to write for a living, because although I may not be all too great at it, I find it a damn sight easier than out-loud real-life verbal communication.

(Have you ever had that thing where someone says something to you and it takes you so long to process what they just said that by the time you’ve come up with a proper response you’ve already awkwardly laughed and mumbled some kind of non-response and looked stupid and the conversation’s moved on/ended? Have you ever been concentrating so hard on making sure you’re smiling and making eye contact as much as is socially normal that you weren’t concentrating hard enough on what the person was saying and so the response you gave to their question just came out sounding really dumb? I guess all these things are excusable if you manage to prove yourself to be witty, charming and socially capable later on. Or perhaps if they’re male and you’re pretty and flirty and trying really hard. I tend to fail repeatedly, get angry at myself for my repeated failure and shut up, so as not to make things even worse. Where pretty is concerned, the best I could ever hope for was ‘cute’. And skinny. Unhappy really really ain’t cute, and skinny is only acceptable when proven accompanied by healthy).

 

As for the future I suppose I can say I’m working on it. Not knowing what’s next in my life – because nice as the people I work with may have been to me thus far, I really can’t stay there much longer without properly, irrevocably  losing my mind – is probably what’s killing me most. I’m beginning to think that applying for jobs that really don’t appeal to me that much but would require me to move to an unfamiliar city far from home all by myself  might not be the best course of action for me. (For Me, Y’ hear?).

So I’ve decided instead to apply only for the ones that really do appeal, when (if) they come up, and otherwise maybe – if there’s any possibility of anyone lending me the money to do so – prepare myself for Postgraduate study next year in a subject area that I know I could really fall for. I go crazy if I try to follow the dreams and goals that everyone else would approve of, so maybe I’ll give following my own a go. If that doesn’t work out, what I’ll have lost will be more money; I’ll have an even more Heckish debt on my shoulders. What I’ll have gained? More/more impressive letters after my name, more pieces of paper saying I’ve learned some stuff, some work experience in the big city if I’m lucky, some time to figure things out a bit more (and maybe become less scared) if I’m lucky, and perhaps even some of the people skills that I’m told I lack so sorely but cannot ‘go anywhere’ in life without. Or, perhaps the skills with which to go somewhere in life all by myself with bare minimum people skills. Or perhaps the courage to say fuck it all and take myself somewhere completely new and far away and just take my chances.

 

Anyway, Who Cares? If you’ve read this far I imagine I’ve done a pretty good job of boring you to death. That’s what I don’t understand about blogging; people talking about themselves and their lives and the things they know and care about. Nobody likes to hear other people talk about themselves, do they? Yet everyone likes doing it. I read a post yesterday where someone was essentially complaining about people complaining in their blogs. You have nothing to legitimately complain about unless something really, genuinely tragic has happened to you. Fair point, but… But I think in reality perspective is something of a Holy Grail at times. I try to always apologise for my unnecessary negativity, but I often wonder why I should. This is my blog and surely I can write what I want to write. Often, what I want to write is all of the nastiness away; writing this stuff is like therapy. People don’t like me writing or talking it at them – they’re not my therapist, and they have their own lives to live – but I feel so much better for writing it all somewhere, and naturally I find myself wanting to feel better wherever possible. The answer is simple; if you don’t like what I’m writing, stop reading.

Humanity is stupid.

Sometimes, I really regret not asking for the number of the skydiving instructor I fell 15,000 feet with, when afterwards he said to me; ‘So, Sociology… That’s all about how humanity’s basically fucked, right?’
We could have been ‘happy on the inside’  jumping out of planes for a living together. (And he was cute. And he kissed me on the cheek when I left. And the mind wanders when it only has itself for company).

…Photo?

Here is my favourite among Mum’s Green Man Army;

 

.

His name is Steve. He was named after me, because my sister and I decided to name one Green Man after each member of the family. This one definitely had to be Steve, since he kinda resembles Steve Martin, the actor. Right?

(We’re all mental to some extent, here. That’s why for now I call it Home).

~xx~


Yesterday,

(All my troubles seemed… to be up my nose and catching in my throat and reverberating around the suffocating emptiness in my head… Hi There, can I help? Yeah, of course, I just need to go and fetch more ______ from the back, won’t be a second…)

Yesterday was kind of a sucky day.

But there’s a really goofy smile in there nonetheless.

So;

I woke up to a not-so-good morning text from someone whose emotional bullshit I would rather not have to face right now, thanks.  Yes, I am a hypocrite; nobody does emotional bullshit like I do, at times. However, this person was categorically not there for me the last time that happened, and for once I’ve decided that that actually matters to me. Cry on someone else’s shoulder, mine hurts. (Oh yeah – right arm feeling distinctly weird after an incident at work the day before, which I won’t go into the details of because *cringe*).

My dad (for a dumb ass reason I won’t go into, but let’s just say it wasn’t my fault – and weirdly, this time I don’t think I would take the guilt so nobody else had to have it) spent all day in hospital having an operation which seemed to have caused him a whole new problem by the time he came round. Apparently there was a lot of waiting and a lot of being passed along from doctor to increasingly-less-well-informed doctor, involved. In addition to being mostly clueless, it seemed there just weren’t enough of them in the place to go around – hence why, I suppose.  And why none of them appeared to give a damn and why he was eventually sent home in agony and pretty clueless about the whole situation himself, at about 11pm.

I won’t bad-mouth the NHS, but I would say that it’s still a fucking fantastic plan to never ever ever get ill, and I really hope my auntie makes a speedy recovery too, from her doctor’s mistake in prescribing her medication she had a known allergy to, plus whatever was originally wrong with her.

Now, I don’t know very much about all this because I was at work. There I was one of a team consisting of, on average over the 8 hours of my shift, 3 people. Ordinarily this would be mildly frustrating. Yesterday, for once in the place’s life there were a fair few customers kicking about. A fair few of those customers wanted things from the deli counter, hot food counter and/or wanted pizzas making up. Cue my responsibility. I won’t go into the duller details, but let’s just say I feel like I deserve a medal for managing to keep everybody happy whilst (noticeably) shaking from hunger – I’d had lunch pretty early in the day and didn’t get a break until 6pm, and have this thing where if I don’t eat enough I shut down –  and then leaving the place, on time, in the kind of sparkly-clean state that makes everyone working the next morning think I have actual OCD or something.

So that wasn’t fun. Apart from the bit where I was maniacally trying to get the scary bloke’s pizzas made and cooked in time for his return (following a pretty massive distraction involving a wedding cake made of cheese… yes, you read that right) and a lady approached the nearby salad bar with an adorable, very smiley baby in her trolley. To cut a short story shorter; goofy grin.

You may wonder why I include this in ‘sucky’, but I was also contacted yesterday regarding a potential interview next week.

I concluded my day with 14 hours’ sleep, from which I woke this morning feeling… not really all that great but – dare I say it – a fair bit better than I have these past few days… weeks. Maybe that’s just my fake problems paling into insignificance in the face of other people’s proper ones, in which case it’s not really a good thing at all.

Anyway, wish me luck because today I’m braving some motorways to drive myself and two friends to somewhere relatively far away for the sake of another friend’s birthday. I can’t really afford this, but ages ago I said I would so now I have to.

eep.

~xx~


Oxymoron

*Ditsy American High School Beauty Queen voice* …So like, do you want me to park, or drive? Cuz I can’t really do both at the same time, can I? Silly…

Um, yeah. Apart from that ^ something else was pointed out to me yesterday;

this blog hasn’t really been going to plan, for quite some time. I was meant to be writing about smiles and happy things, and I’ve somehow ended up whining 40% of the time and being quiet for the other 60%.

I’m not really sorry about that, but I understand that I probably should be; I’m sure nobody really likes to read about un-smiley things, and I’m sure my drastic drop in page views is a reflection of that fact.

All I can say really is bear with me, and I promise I will get back to the smiles eventually. In case you hadn’t figured this out yet, I haven’t really been feeling too well lately (and am more afraid of finding out a potentially terrifying reason as to why, than I am of carrying on like this until I keel over or something), and my life has taken a bit of a U-turn in terms of how bright the future looks and things.  I mean, ok so I saw the U-turn coming from the other end of the motorway, and it wasn’t like it happened quickly or anything, but the fact remains that I’m currently going backwards. I don’t like it and am trying to change it, but the aforementioned not-feeling-healthy, sometimes-feeling-just-plain-crazy thing is slowing me down a fair bit. Some day I will have to feel more smiley (and for more than a couple of hours at a time). It has to happen.

In the meantime,

This Guy  (who happens to be my friend Chris) has decided to follow in my blogging footsteps where the original aim of this thing was concerned, and write about his own daily smiles – the first of which is accredited to yours truly from a conversation we had yesterday.

^ Follow him for the antidote to my failure  melancholy? And because he’s just generally kinda lovely, and stuff.

: )

~xx~


I’m A Graduate

As for the job I just got rejected by, I’ll say the same as I do to everyone who rejects me; I can do better anyway.

(And behind their backs I’ll tell everyone they were terrible in bed…

nah, kidding, kidding. *wink*)

But yeah. BA(Hons) and all that. Hopefully some day it’ll get me somewhere; whatever happens, I can hope.

~xx~


Passive Aggressive Bullsh*t…

This time last year I Paid my landlord £468, as did each of the other 4 girls I lived with, as the deposit to secure our tenancy of the house we’ve been living in.

Now that we’ve moved out, he intends to give each of us £180 of that back; he’s claiming the rest in expenses for what can only be described as general wear and tear. Things like £60 for lightbulbs, £200 for cleaning, (my mum and I went to great lengths to make sure we left the place spotless) and £220 for garden maintenance.

The garden is tiny. Unless he paid the Queen of England herself to mow the lawn, I fail to comprehend how it can possibly have cost him that much to tidy up. We also asked him before we moved out whether he wanted us to sort it, and he told us not to worry about it.

The boiler wasn’t working when we moved in, He broke our first hoover, and it was the workmen he hired to fix the place up, again before we’d even moved in, who smoked and are thus responsible for the burn on the carpet in the attic and the cigarette butts on the roof.

Despite promising he would, he never showed up to check everything over or discuss anything with us on the day, or in the few days before, we all moved out. We learned of his plans to screw us out of most of our money via an email that he has so far only sent to one of us. (He didn’t pick up the phone when I tried to call him earlier).

Did I ever mention – oh, yeah I did. About how my shelves fell off my bedroom wall that time and I could have been seriously hurt because of his ineptitude at DIY… but that’s not even the point, here. I hate how everyone treats students like they’re not real people. I hate how he apparently thinks he can just talk crap to us and rip us off because we’re a group of girls. I hate how he’s trying to use us to solve his (suspected) debt problem. I hate how next year’s tenants are also a group of girls and he’s pretty much gonna try on the same thing with them next year.

I might have slept fairly well tonight, but the minor injustice of this situation burns. An irrational amount. (Seriously, anyone need a light?…)

.

I wouldn’t be so cruel as to hope, as my sister suggested, that a piano falls on his head. I do, however, hope he steps on a plug. Twice in one morning.

I hope he develops – if he doesn’t already suffer from it – erectile dysfunction.

I hope his house becomes infested with ants, wasps, bees and mice. And pigeons and squirrels and fleas.

Just…

…ROAR.

~xx~


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