Thursday, 22 March 2012

A little bit of a rant.

Now, before I start, I'd like to point out that I am in a fantastic mood today. I've called it a 'rant', but it isn't as such, more of a few observations than anything else. Nevertheless, they are things that I'd like to get off my mind and get out there. 

Okay. So...

Is it really any wonder that kids these days are, let's face it, thick as shit? Me and the boyfriend were watching the animated series of Batman the other day from 1992, so I was 2 when they came out, but they would've been played throughout my childhood really. Bit of backs story; Poison Ivy was gathering up people who had hurt the environment and/or nature in some way to her private Spa, where she was slowly drugging the visitors and eventually sprayed them with some kind of chemical that coated them in bark and eventually, over a period of time, turned them into trees themselves, essentially giving back to the environment. Now, Batman couldn't just wander in and apprehend Ms. Ivy because he'd be turned into a tree. So we, the viewers, got to see Batman literally explain how he was going to take some of the toxin she was using and merge it with his own blood so that he could create a liquid/spray that was immune to her toxin gas. He coated his cape in the immunisation stuff and, when faced with Ivy's toxin, it didn't affect him and he beat her at her own game.

This is the kind of things that kids were watching in 1992 and onward a couple of years, and previous to that, cartoons were even MORE engaging and smart. So we, as kids, are sitting there smack bang in front of the TV, engrossed by this cartoon, and inadvertently learning about both chemistry and biology because that really IS how immunisation works; when you get an immunisation injection, a small part of the virus or infection is injected into you so that your body learns how to fight it. 

Another quick example, still on Batman; Batman got smacked on the head and was put into a coma. But we didn't know he was in a coma, as far as we were concerned, everything we were watching was real. Suddenly, he was Bruce Wayne, but he wasn't Batman, someone else was. He went about his business, done normal things, but he was unsettled by the fact that his parents were still alive, and, of course, he wasn't Batman any more. Obviously a bit confusing for someone who knows he is Batman... But then he opens up a paper, and all the words are jumbled and he can't read. Now, I may get my left and right sides wrong here, so correct me if I'm wrong, but, because he can't read the paper, Bruce Wayne realises that he is in a dream, because reading is a right brain function and dreaming is a left-side function (correct me if I'm wrong, I may have got them muddled up... I'm getting old, I have an excuse). Bruce Wayne then enters a battle on a roof top, where he realises that, if you're dreaming, and you're falling, you'll wake up before you hit the 
ground. So he throws himself off the roof, and then he wakes up to reality, and it was all a big facade put on by the Mad Hatter. 

The point I'm trying to prove is that, this is all quite in-depth stuff, and you have to really know your stuff to understand what's going on, and you know what? As a kid, I understood this stuff. I LOVED that realisation at the end of an episode of something like TMNT or Power Rangers or something like that when you realise what's actually happened and what's going on. 

Cartoons these days, unless you're lucky to get a quick re-run of Tom & Jerry on Cartoon Network, are SO dumbed down that it's no wonder kids aren't learning anything and are, as previously said, thick as shit. The one program on CITV that we were particularly comparing things to is a kids program called "Half Naked Animals". It's basically animals in pants running around being stupid. How can you justify sitting your kids in front of that? What are they going to learn? That Porky the Pig is supposed to wear pants? 

Apparently these days kids are put under "so much pressure to excel" in school that we can't have cartoons that are too in-depth because it doesn't give kids any time to relax. My arsehole. Is it any wonder that poets and authors are a dying breed? It's cuz the next generation and generations coming up after that have absolutely zilch imagination because the only thing they've been exposed to is animals in pants. 

And before anyone tells me "Oh but Batman is meant more for adults than kids" - Don't even go there. The movies, maybe so, but the animated cartoon series? No. That's for kids. Directors and producers themselves have even said that they introduced Robin so that kids would be able to see themselves in him and with that they can pretend that they're there, walking alongside Batman, BEING Robin. 

What I'm trying to say is, in cartoons these days, there is absolutely no degree of imagination needed whatsoever. No difficulty in it, no education, nothing. It's just sheer retarded stupidity made purely to reign in the viewers because they know that parents will happily plonk their children down in front of half naked animals because it's "cute" and "fun" and "not violent" and "easy". 

Which leads me on to my next annoyance. Me and Doug discuss this at length quite often, and I always mean to bring my opinion to the world, but I haven't yet, so I'm going to now.

Parents will happily get their pen and paper out and write a stinking letter to Ofcom if they see a cartoon that has someone throwing a few punches in it, or an advert with a cow that goes "mmmmm" a little too erotically for their children's ears. Parents will happily sign a petition to get a cartoon or TV programme off the air if there's criminals or violence or if it's "too hard" for children to understand. 

Parents will QUITE HAPPILY remove their child from the TV if there's criminal activity going on in a cartoon or TV program, take them to a different room, plonk them in front of the XBox, hand them the controller and stick in Call Of Duty for them. Is anyone seeing the backwards logic here? Firstly, the only reason that kid has Call Of Duty is cuz he whinged for it because all his friends have it and, well, where's the harm in giving him a game? It's just a game, right? A game where you're shooting actual people in REAL locations, not made up locations, REAL one that ACTUALLY exist, and the whole point is the pretty much destroy an entire race of people because they've threatened your country.

THAT'S a FINE lesson to instil into your child, isn't it? Don't become a vigilante cuz that's bad and wrong but it's okay to go get an army-issue machine gun and fire at will at innocent civilians because their political leader made a boo-boo and called your country stupid. 

But maybe you're smart enough to not hand your 6 year old child an Xbox with Live on it and an 18-rated game. Good. So what shall we do with the kids instead? Oh, I know, let's put MTV on and let them dance around and sing for a bit because that's good for them, it's exercise. Awesome.

So we stick on MTV and who're we faced with? Rhianna! Oh that's good, she's good for my little girl, she goes around telling girls not to starve themselves, she's been the victim of domestic abuse and she's pulled through it, she takes care of herself, she's a role model for little kids, right? Great, so you wont let your kid watch Batman or other cartoons that require some degree of thought and brain power, but now you've got your children dancing around your living room singing at the top of their voices the following excerpts;

"Come On Rude Boy, Boy
Can You Get It Up
Come Here Rude Boy, Boy
Is You Big Enough
Take It, Take It
Baby, Baby
Take It, Take It
Love Me, Love Me"

"I Like The Way You Touch Me There
I Like The Way You Pull My Hair
Babe, If I Don't Feel It I Ain't Faking
No, No"

Do you know how many kids I've heard singing that? How many little girls wander round Tesco and up and down the street singing "Rude Boy" at anything that moves? Yet how many times have you seen in the paper "Parents complain about Rhianna's lyrics"? How many times do you see the censorships saying "Well yes this movie is a 15 because there's a battle scene in it" and how many times have you heard them say "Sorry Rhianna, this song can't be entered into the charts because it's not suitable"? ... Yeah, exactly. 

We live in a stupid world full of stupid people with stupid ideologies and stupid opinions. And yeah, sure, you might think that my opinion is stupid. Fact is, I know it isn't. 

To sum it up; cartoons and things that kids watch on a regular basis are so dumbed down these days it's not difficult to see why the next generation are, for the most part, one step away from being deemed officially mentally handicapped. But that's good, because we obviously don't want our children to have to think about things or to see violence on the TV, but it's okay because we'll either smack 'em in front of the Xbox to play something like Call Of Duty or Halo or we'll plank 'em in front of MTV so they can sing about how desperate they are to have sex. Fantastic. 

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not putting all the eggs into one basket, there are some parents, although few and far between, who have the smarts to encourage their children to think about things and to not buy them games purely because they want them and to try and discourage them from listening to the crap on the radio (Let's face it, it's really difficult to completely avoid music in the charts). Whenever I'm in Tesco and I hear a parent say "No, you're not getting that, because it's an 18, and I don't care if Jimmy has it, you're not Jimmy, now put it back", my heart genuinely skips a beat and I feel a flicker of hope for the world. 

But for the most part, it's really no wonder why this planet and her inhabitants are declining so rapidly. Nobody encourages thinking or creating any more, it's all about technology and what pals have and what shuts the kids up the best without making them think too hard because that's "stressful". 

It's ridiculous. 

So, tell me what you think.

Saturday, 25 February 2012

How snobby am I?

What do you have:

[x] Mother
[x] Father
[x] Step-Father
[x] Step-Mother
[ ] Step Sister
[ ] Step Brother
[ ] Brother
[x] Brother In Law
[ ] Sister
[x] Sister In Law
[ ] Half sister
[ ] Half brother
[x] Nephew
[ ] Niece
[x] Mobile phone
[ ] Own bathroom
[x] Own room
[ ] Have/had a swimming pool
[ ] Have/had a hot tub
[x] Guest room
[x] Living Room
[x] Own computer
[x] Own TV
total so far - 13

[x] More than 8 pairs of shoes
[x] MP3 Player/iPod
[x] PS2/3
[x] Nintendo DS or PSP
[ ] Gameboy/Advance
[x] Gamecube
[x] Xbox/Xbox 360
[ ] Wii
[x] Laptop
total so far- 20

[ ] Basketball net/hoop
[ ] Air hockey table
[ ] Pool table
[ ] Ping pong table
[ ] Fooseball table
total so far- 20

[x] Night stand
[x] Stereo in bedroom
[x] DVD player in bedroom/portable
total so far- 23

[x] Go shopping at least once a week
[x] Expensive cologne/perfume
[x] Camera on phone
total so far- 27

[ ] Go Cart
[x] Guitar/ drums/ bass guitar
[x] Piano/Keyboard
[x] Any other instrument
[ ] Been on a cruise
[x] Traveled out of the country
[x] Traveled out of the continent
[ ] Had a personal trainer
[x] Expensive jewelry
[x] Met a Celeb
[x] Get your hair dyed
total so far- 35

[x] Straightener/curling iron
[ ] Have been to a batting cage
[ ] Have $100 on you right now in your pocket/wallet
[x] Credit card or atm card or debit card or bank card
[x] Have a lamp in your room
[x] Mirror in your room
totals so far - 39

[x] Window in your room
[ ] Been to Paris
[x] Been to England
[ ] Been to the Bahamas
[ ] Been to Mexico
[ ] Been to Jamaica
[ ] Been to Canada
total so far- 41

[x] Parent has a car
[ ] Parent has a Jet ski/boat
[x] Have Camper
[x] Been to 3+ states
[x] 80+ buddies on facebook/myspace
total so far- 45

[x] Home cooked meal almost everyday
[x] Been in a limo
[ ] Been in a helicopter
[x] Own a camera
[x] Have been to Disneyland/World
total overall - 49

Upper-class snob. Lmao.

Post as : (the number that you get)
1-22 = Ghetto
23-33 = Average Teen
34-39 = Spoiled TEEN
40+ = Upper Class Snob

How girly am I?

74% apparently. Liar.

How Girly Are You?

[x] You own over 10 bottles of nail polish
[x] You own a designer purse
[x] You own perfume that cost over $60
[x] You had/have fake nail
[ ] Your pet is a Chihuahua/Pomeranian/Yorkshire Terrier/Siamese/Shih Tzu/ mini anything
[ ] you have clothes/shoes/accessories for your pet
[x] You have enough clothes to cover an entire refugee camp
[x] you have enough pictures to make your own wallpaper
[x] A pink comforter, carpeting, walls or sheets
Total so far: 7

Do you:
[x] Spend more time at the mall than you do on homework
[x] Have had a hair color that is not natural Green, Purple, Pink, Blue, you name it.
[x] Have "blonde moments" at least once a day
[x] Buy stuff because it's awesome and then never wear/use it
[x] Constantly keep your phone at your side
[x] Dance around in your room when nobody else is home
[x] Have a name for your car
[ ] Know what celebrity is dating who and who broke up this week.
[ ] Refuse to go out in public without makeup
[ ] Prefer to be called "princess"
Total so far: 14

Do you love:
[x] Makeup
[x] Glitter
[ ] The color Pink
[ ] Jewelry
[ ] Mirrors
[ ] Chick flicks
[x] Shoes
[x] Rainbows
[x] Unicorns
[x] Disney Movies
[ ] Flowers
[x] Stuffed Animals
[x] Purses
Total so far: 22

Do you shop at:
[ ] Coach
[ ] Forever 21
[ ] Victoria's Secret
[ ] Guess
[x] Claire's
[ ] Express
[ ] Delia's
[ ] Hollister
[ ] American Eagle
[ ] Abercrombie Fitch
[ ] Aeropostale
Total so far: 23

Do you say:
[x] Whatever
[x] Oh my gosh/goodness/god
[ ] Hun
[x] Fugly
[x] That's hot
[ ] Dunzo
[x] Darling
[x] Bff
[x] Cutie
[ ] Hottie
[X] Skank
[x] Totally
[x] For Sure
[x] Fabulous
Total So Far: 34

Do you read:
[x] Cosmopolitan
[ ] Glamour
[ ] Marie Claire
[ ] Elle Girl
[ ] Teen Vogue
[ ] People
[ ] Us Weekly
[ ] Star
[ ] Self
[ ]
[ ]
[ ] Seventeen
[ ]
[ ]
[ ]
[ ] Pink Is The New
Total so far: 35

Do you love these:
[x] Legally Blonde
[ ] Elizabethtown
[x] Mean Girls
[ ] Now & Then
[ ] The Notebook
[ ] A Walk to Remember
[ ] Sweet Home Alabama
[ ] Where the Heart is
[ ] Just my luck
[ ] John Tucker Must Die
[ ] Center stage
[ ] Bring it On
[ ] How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
[ ] Mona Lisa Smile
[ ] My Girl
[ ] Wedding Date
[ ] 10 Things I Hate About You
Total So far: 37

Do you really enjoy:
[ ] America's Next Top Model
[ ] Project Runway
[ ] Desperate Housewives
[ ] The Simple Life
[ ] 8th & Ocean
[ ] Sex & the City
[ ] Grey's Anatomy
[ ] The O.C.
[ ] The City
[ ] Nip/Tuck
[ ] Gilmore Girls
[ ] Degrassi
Final Total: 37

Take your total and multiply it by 2. Then repost this as "I am __% Girly." With the number you got as the percent of course

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

What has happened to the world today?

I'm in one of those moods that just happen when I'm alone, one of those "Let's Think About Life" moods, and usually, nothing but bad comes from this, but right now, I'm feeling... philosophical. Is "Sadly Thoughtful" a mood or emotion? As in, I feel quite sad, but not in a "boo hoo cry cry" way, in a ... "How did the world get this way?" way? Is that possible? Am I making sense?

Two things have happened/are happening right now that have put me in this mood.

1. I am listening to His Majesty The Desert by Down. Despite the fact that I hate Phil Anselmo and everything he says, thinks and does, Down are perhaps one of the most calming... groups in the world. I hesitate to call them a band because when you think of a band, you think of a couple of people who live to make music and make music to earn money. I don't get that vibe from Down. You can very much tell that, despite having one of metal's most infamous names in the legion, all they really are are a bunch of Southern musicians singing and playing their thoughts away. Now, that's something coming from me, considering a) I'm not a huge Down fan, I wouldn't even call myself a fan, more of an "occasional listener" and b) as previously mentioned, I can't stand Phil Anselmo. So yeah. In case you're not familiar with the song, I'm asking you to give it a quick listen, it's only two minutes long. Disregard the last 5 seconds or so, it's meant to carry on into the next song, just listen to the first two minutes or so, and tell me it doesn't make you wonder how the hell the world got into such a state --> Down - His Majesty The Desert

2. For the past 3 hours, I've been reading all the things people have posted on a site called MMT, or Makes Me Think. Here, people post things that have, well, made them think. Inspirational things. Things that don't usually happen, or things that we wouldn't expect to happen to us. Things like people giving 5 bucks to a homeless guy then realising that homeless guy used most of that 5 bucks to fund the parking meter which is about to run out on the car of the person who originally gave him the 5 bucks. It's a general feel-good site with things that genuinely do make you think. I think you should go and check it out, it's truly inspiring, some of the things you read on there will blow your mind.

All of this smooshed together into one big thought process leads to Jess getting all philosophical and thus posting a blog about it, in usual Jess fashion. So now you know the background, here goes.

What has actually happened to the world today?

 - Why do people still feel the need to outcast black people based on the colour of their skin despite the fact that the big wigs in politics and influential areas have been telling us, for years, that actually, it's okay to be black? That black people are exactly the same as white people and deserve the same rights and equalities?
Is it something that's just built in? Is it that racism gets passed up through generation to generation? Rightly so, we can't exactly start asking out grandparents or great grandparents to stop being racist because that is, literally, just the world they were born and raised in, when being black WASN'T okay. We can't ask them to just stop that, and undoubtedly they've passed that inbuilt hatred down to their offspring. What the world then needs is for that offspring to go, "Well, my parents are actually wrong". I doubt we can put the entire blame on older generations though, and I do reckon that, for the most part, the majority of racism exists solely because of sheer ignorance and stupidity.

What I'm about to write also applies to other things such as homosexuality, religion and physical looks, so I'm going to bundle them all into the one area and bring them into the recipe here as well.

Ignorance and stupidity is the major downfall of today's society. The simple fact is is that we still live in a society where we see someone who is different to us and we don't like it, so we lash out at them for it. I'm by no means an angel and I can put my hands up and say that yes, I have judged people before, as have you, and anyone else reading this, and everyone in the world walking this planet, we've all judged people, weather inwardly or outwardly, so nobody can sit there claiming 100% innocence. The simple fact is is that the less fortunate within our society choose to express their judgements in ways that are or could be deemed violent, abusive or humiliating.

I will give you an example:

A rather large lady is making her way slowly down the street, minding her own business, doing some shopping, quite happily getting on with her day.

My reaction - "Oh, she's quite a large lady" <- Still a judgement, but more of an observation.

Societies' less fortunate inhabitant - "Hahahaha fat cow! Hit the gym fatty! Who ate all the pies? She did! Ahahaha what a mess!"

The best part is, is that those with the above reaction will, nine times out of ten, be with a larger group of people, friends or peers.

And so we get down to the very nitty gritty of what is letting society down today - gang culture.

Now, by gang, I don't literally mean "kids in America who own guns and shoot opposing gang members". That's what gang culture USED to mean. Nowadays, I reckon anyway, it could be used to describe any large group of people who are causing a general annoyance to the public.

Generally speaking, people who abuse others do so because they feel they have a reputation to upkeep, a standing within a certain group, respect to gain or some thing to be on the same level as everyone else. This can be applied to basically any kind of abuse -

- Domestic abuse - generally happens because one person wants control over the other, ie; a reputation and standing within a partnership that they are the dominant person.
- Sexual abuse - again, another way of showing control and dominance
- Verbal abuse - a way of showing that they are better than the person they are abusing and thus have the right to bark down at the person because they are better, higher in the food chain if you like

And so on. There are many kinds of abuse. All of them are designed to let the victim 'know' that the perpetrator has control or dominance over them, that they are better or superior in whatever way.

So, by shouting at this large lady in the street, the thug is telling everyone within the vicinity that he/she is better than the large lady because he/she is not as fat as that lady. Everyone knows that being fat may as well be a crime these days, so that person is letting everyone else know that they are not fat, therefore they are better.

The scary thing is is that nowadays, it is much more likely to be a gang of youths that start the trouble than anyone else.

A great example are the London Riots that happened in 2011. A man was shot by a police officer, and the youths of England used this as an excuse to riot and loot. Now, according to them, at first, it was a way to show disgust at the way the government, the police and the city were being controlled, at least that was the reason of the PEACEFUL protesters. However, as soon as the kids got in on the act and started rioting, setting fire to beautiful buildings hundreds of years old and looting, the reason for it quickly became "WE'RE GETTIN OUR TAXES BACK INNIT".

Now, this is a fantastically beautiful example of irony at it's finest.

Firstly, for anyone that didn't watch any coverage of the riots, the very very vast majority of people involved in the riots came from places where unemployment is extremely high and income is extremely low, almost bordering the poverty line in many places. This is a horrid thing, yes, but how many of those young looters do you reckon have ever actually put anything towards their NI contribution, never mind tax? Do they even know what tax is?

If "GETTING OOR TAXES BACK"  was a good excuse for looting, then why weren't decent, honest people looting to get their taxes back too? People like my dad and my aunty pay £1000+ a month in tax, tax that goes towards giving these kinds dole money so they can go and get pissed every night of the week. How is that fair? My dad has been working for his current company for, let's see.... 12 years now? So if we just assume that he paid, on average, £800 a month in tax (I'm sure that would level it out enough to cover all salary bands he's been on), over 12 years, that's a grand total of  £115,200. That's £9600 a year in tax, btw. So if people were GETTING OOR TAXES BACK, why wasn't my dad grabbing a nice stash, to the total of £115k worth of plasma TV's and iPad's?

I realise I've gone off on a bit of a rant here, but at the end of the day, how can one get one's taxes back when one has never likely to have paid tax... ever?

SO, to round it all up, and make this as easy as possible for me to understand (because honestly, I'll admit, I've lost track now) -

The stereotyping/racism/general actively outward judgements come from groups of people who believe that they are better than the rest of general society and thus should be treated as such, and when they don't get treated as such, they get nasty, which, despite their general lack of employment, leads to them rebelling against a government that is trying its best to help them by "GETTIN OOR TAXES BACK INNIT" despite the fact they have probably never paid taxes, because they feel that, despite doing nothing for themselves or society aside from causing a general annoyance and a huge statistic on the world which shows this up and coming generation to be the most selfish, unreliable and thoughtless yet, they still should be treated like royalty, fed money from the hard working slaves who are working endlessly to provide them with food and cigarettes, and given nice houses in which they can lead a happy life getting up each day whenever they want and spending all day getting high and/or drunk and having a jolly good time with friends.

I have society sorted.


Wednesday, 21 December 2011

The Spirit Of Christmas

So I know I originally only intended for this blog to be writing related, but let's face it, I haven't exactly been active and I'm not doing any writing right now and I finished NaNo and, well, yeah, this technically counts as writing, so yeah!

Anyway, I have a gripe. And it's a pretty big gripe. In fact, it's my biggest gripe in life, period.

The kids of today, and the lack of appreciation they have for the things they SHOULD be appreciating.

Now, I can admit to anyone who asks me that I haven't exactly been a perfect child/teenager. I've done some absolutely terrible things in my short time. Short of murder and rape, I've pretty much done it all. I'm by no means an innocent.

But honestly? I'm talking about the smaller things. The much smaller things.

Let me give you a bit of backstory;

When I was little, I lived in a little town in Lincolnshire called Grantham. To say I loved it is an understatement. I adored that town. I adored my home. I adored my school, my friends, my teachers, I had a perfect childhood. I loved my street, my park, everything. I loved everything. I loved how my bedroom had a huge bay window, I loved how the living room had an equally huge window looking out onto the garden, and I loved how our front room, despite being pretty much level with the pavement outside, had a perfectly sized window so that when we put our tree up at Christmastime, everyone seen it. It was perfect. I loved it. I can't say that enough, I loved it.

And one thing I loved more than anything, more than anything in the world, was Christmastime. I should point out that I'm not religious in the slightest, I do not and will never believe in a higher being, and I have my reasons for that. But I went to a Christian school. My junior school was literally about 20 yards away from the most beautiful church in the world - St Wulfram's Church. I used to look up at it from my classroom when I was in year 4. Every year, around about November time, we'd start rehearsing for the Nativity play. Every year, without fail. I was always in the choir, and I loved that. I didn't want to act, I wanted to sing.

The teachers back then put their heart and soul into helping us every year with the nativity and, even at 6/7 years old, we as kids could tell the teachers actually enjoyed teaching us. And we enjoyed being taught. And every year, just before Christmas, we'd all pile into that beautiful church and perform the Nativity play. And we enjoyed it, every single second of it, we put our heart and soul into it and we enjoyed it because we knew it was Christmas. The Nativity play and the songs WERE Christmas.

Again, I'll point out, I'm in no way religious. Neither was anyone that I knew back then either really. It was the music, the notes, not the words.

Back then, we were never rich or even remotely "in the money". My dad was working for his own, pretty much non-productive (at the time) company and my mum was working all the hours under the sun at a nursing home just to keep the roof over our heads. Christmas wasn't about the size or expense of the present. It was about being a community, being friends, and being a family unit. When I was 6, 15 years ago, we still had Christmas carollers and neighbours posting cards to each other and such forth. Can you imagine going to your neighbour's house now and belting out a song at them? They'd probably get the police on us.

I don't know if it's because I moved to Scotland that I'm so bitter. In Scotland, it's very much a case of you're either Protestant or Catholic. I don't know why they have Catholicism here instead of Christianity, it's essentially the same bloody thing, but that's not the gripe at hand here. What I will say though is that the Scottish school system seems to take all the fun and excitement out of the Nativity play, primarily because you're FORCED to do it. When I was in school in Grantham, it was a case of "If you want to do it, you can. If you don't want to do it, you don't have to". Up here, because you're in a strict Religious school, you have to do it. It's part of your education. That instantly takes the actual meaning out of it.

Secondly, children these days have absolutely no appreciation for the things that they should appreciate. By children, I mean anyone under the age of 18, basically. It's fair to say that I wasn't exactly brought up on operatic or choir music, it was more... Queen and Meatloaf, and yeah, that's pretty cool, but, because of my educational upbringing in school in Grantham, because of the environment I was brought up it, I have SUCH a HUGE appreciation of the musical arts. I literally could sit and listen to a beautiful soprano singer all day every day. Especially at Christmas time, because, well, classical music is naturally quite Christmassy, isn't it?

And do you know what I put this all down to? The advancements in technology.

Now, there's no doubt it was going to happen. Technology was always going to and is always going to find it's own evil ways to advance. But because of advancements in technology, kids just aren't taking any interest in anything of substance these days.

Hey, mum on the street, why are you buying your 8 year old an XBox 360 for Christmas? Shouldn't your 8 year old be out catching tadpoles with his friends? No, because catching tadpoles is boring and it involves actually moving, why should he move when he can just sit in front of the TV and be brainwashed into thinking that shooting up Afghan's in Call Of Duty is cool?

Hey, dad in Argos, why does your 10 year old need an iPod? What exactly are they going to listen to, Dora's directions to the bathroom? I suppose they came home and told you that one of the big boys had one and well, that was you, hook, line and sinker, no?

Hey, parents in PC World, why in the name of hell does your little kid need a laptop? Can't they use the family computer to play Barbie's Princess Adventures?

No, and this is exactly they problem. Two problems, in fact.

1. Parents are getting FAR too protective these days. They'll hit you with the "Murders! Rapists!" bullshit - what, you think there weren't any murdered and rapists around when you were a kid, or what I was a kid? The only difference is that, these days, they get far more media coverage because the media likes you to buy into this little thing they like to call "Mass hysteria" where-in they will, eventually, make you a nervous wreck unable to leave your own front door because there WILL be someone waiting there to mug you.

Oh dear. I've gone off on a bit of a tangent.

Look, the point is, Christmas isn't the same any more because everyone is pretty much so set on buying their kid's affection with big fancy presents that, quite frankly, they will never need, that the REAL spirit of Christmas, the Nativity, the choirs, the hymns, the carols, the cards, the Christmas trees, they all get forgotten about.

It's not only that of course, it's not all down the kids and parents. We've all adopted such atrociously vigorous work ethics these days that, where once before families would have put Christmas day with their family before work, nowadays, it's very much a case of "If I'm working, I'm working". 20-30 years ago, for a start, a company generally would never have asked anyone to work Christmas because it was such a family-orientated holiday. And it was exactly that - a holiday. Nowadays, Christmas is literally just a day, then it's all back to normal. That's not how I remember it. That's not how Christmas should be.

And it's saddening. It's really saddening.

The other day, my nephew got "made" to perform in the Sunday School nativity, and when he came home, boy was he pissed at having to be a shepherd. I wanted to scream at him, "These are the best days of your life! These are the days you should cherish! You should love these moments!", but of course, I can't. Because that's not my place. It's my opinion, but not my place.

The same nephew, two Christmases ago, at age 10, got a present. He got a whole multitude of presents, but there was this one present, and my beloved captured it perfectly on camera and everything. He opened this present, looked at it, chucked it to one said and said, "I didn't want this one, I wanted the other one!"

At 10 years old, to me, ANY present was a joy! I didn't whinge about presents, I didn't through my teens either, and I wouldn't DREAM of it now! And you know what that is a perfect example of? It's a perfect example of how kids are being brought up with the wrong idea about Christmas these days.

I'll reiterate one last time, I am in no way religious. But I would take kids believing Christmas is about jesus over kids believing Christmas is about presents any day. Presents are just a nice side point, the REAL point is FAMILY. FRIENDS. COMMUNITY. That's the real point of Christmas!

But nowadays you have kids who get up, open their presents, then go and sit in their room the rest of the day playing on their brand new console/computer/gadget-type thing. THAT'S NOT CHRISTMAS!

And it's absolutely, terrifyingly horrible. And I hate it. And it's not going to change because, well, times have changed and technology is everything now. Technology, and greed. Yes, everyone has some amount of greed in them to some extent. I know I do, and I know you do too. But to the point of chucking a present aside because it's not exactly what you wanted?


Next year, for Christmas 2012, round about November time, I'm going to start a campaign called "BRING CHRISTMAS BACK".

It's late and I've successfully depressed myself now.

I'm going to bed.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

My 'Things To Do Really Soon' List

Hey guys,

So... I haven't really been here very much, and to be honest, I don't really know why. I've been seriously lazy with my novel. I'm still working on it, haven't given up yet, I've got 30k down so it's not all doom and gloom, but I just can't seem to write if I'm not at a write-in =/

I'll get there though.

Anyway, I have a list of things that I really need to do. Life things, not just novel things or writing things. Some things I want to do before the end of 2011, some things that just aren't attainable before next year.

Either way, I'm going to make a list of them here and hopefully, I'll stick to them. :)

Things To Do before 2012

  • Finish my Novel
  • Edit my Novel
  • Get my novel sent off to Createspace
  • Cut down smoking
  • Plan out a second novel
  • Stop wasting so much money
  • Get a job

Things To Do in 2012

  • Move out of my parents/Doug's parents house into my own flat
  • Get a new-ish car
  • Stop smoking
  • Write a second novel
  • Edit second novel
  • Think about contacting publishers (?)
  • Go on holiday with Liger
  • Give my parents back the money I owe them
  • Pay off credit cards
  • Pay off Phone bills
  • Pay off EVERYTHING
  • Be debt free, basically

Okay so, there we go. There's my list.

I suppose I should keep this slightly novel-related, so... I hit 30k last night :) I'm running out of steam though... I'm going to have to re-write my remaining chapter outlines and add a few things in because I don't think there 20k left in my ideas. =/

How's everyone else getting on? :)


Sunday, 6 November 2011


I have procrastinated ALL day. I haven't written a SINGLE word today.

I feel bad for it, but I'm also horrendously tired and honestly? I can't be bothered.

Which is annoying because last night, before I conked out in bed, I was desperate to write more more more, even though I was SO tired, but it was like 5am and that's pushing the boundaries, even for me. :(

But I'm still a good 6k ahead of the target, so I'm not falling behind. Yet.