The Right Side Of History

I have not blogged in a long time. Which is not to say that I’ve not been writing; I’ve been writing short stories and a longer book and all manner of things that might get published but most likely end their lives on some Editor’s slush pile. Not that I’m going to let knowing that stop me. I have to finish my book by September or have to buy someone-who has had to listen to me talk about writing since the age of sixteen-a year’s worth of cinema passes. I think he has earned them. I once pitched him the Children’s book about the Squirrel. That is one project that will never, ever, ever, ever see the light of day. I would burn it but then it might enter the atmosphere.

But I digress.

One of my favourite tropes in fiction is the reality warp. For those of you unfamiliar, the reality warp is when the characters wake up in a world where they are ordinary. No powers, no magic, no dead fiancé, depending on what kind of show you’re watching. Sometimes it’s a dream. Sometimes it’s time travel, or a magic artefact. Sometimes it’s a computer simulation, which apparently didn’t go out of fashion in the early 2000’s. Eventually the characters figure it out and get everything back to normal(ish), stopping only for a brief stay in a mental institution. Some people think such episodes or story arcs are distracting, but I like them. Always a sucker for a parallel universe, me. Even the ones where everyone is evil. Those ones are fun, providing they don’t go full-on Nazi.

I have felt that something has been wrong for as long as I can remember. I can’t put my finger on what it is, but it’s always been there. This feeling in the very pit of my stomach that something just seems off somehow. That there is a piece missing.

Now, I’ve made no secret of my ongoing quest to figure out just why I am the way I am. I’ve got a diagnoses that explains why I might be out of sync with other people. I’ve finally realised that I am Asexual, something I wish I had figured out earlier because I have wasted a lot of my life trying to live up to some Patriarchal bullshit ideal of how interested and active in sex a man should be, and have made a lot of people’s lives a lot less fun in the process.

It’s not all been introspection. I’ve tried to find the missing piece of the world through charity work, through working with vulnerable kids. I’ve found a job that allows me to help and protect people, to a degree.

Nothing works, though. The best way I can describe it is: something should have happened that didn’t, and this is the world we have now.

I dunno. Maybe I’m not alone in thinking there is something wrong that can’t be fixed by marching or voting or having a slagging match on Twitter. Maybe all I’ve done by writing this down is make myself look insane or pretentious or both. Maybe there is a better way of cheering myself up when I’m feeling low than thinking of a better, more complete world. But it’s all I got, people. And who knows, maybe one day I might be able to do something that makes that better world a reality. Just a small action, among thousands of small actions, that will fill the void.

In all seriousness, though: If you do find out reality has been messed with and I’m remembering it somehow, you gotta tell me. Seriously. It would not be cool to keep it from e after I’ve bared my soul, ya know?

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How to be Happy

Here’s an update relating to my last Blog, in case you were interested: I’ve told a couple of people that I am Asexual (as opposed to writing a blog about it and telling the whole world, but whatever). They took it very well. Nobody accused me of attention seeking, or dismissed it out of hand. They were very supportive and kind and have treated me no differently.

One person, however, said that they wished I could find the happy part of myself. They told me that I was entitled to as many labels as I needed to feel comfortable, but they wished that one of those parts gave me happiness.

To which I say: Yeah, me too.

It would be very easy for me to go down a very predictable route at this point. I’m broken. That’s kind of a given by now, right? Hell, there is a reason I am the way I am. Other people with Autism can have friends and families. Other Asexuals can open themselves up and love and be loved. Other people with Anxiety and Depression and whatever fucking thing else is lurking in the back of my head can go out and have adventures. It’s not a mental illness, or a disability or a sexuality. It’s me. Whatever gene or bone makes people be able to find happiness is either broken or was never there to begin with. I’m defective. This is not news to anyone. I will work hard. I will try to change. I will meet people. But it will always end with me sitting in a flat on my own. That’s just how it is.

I can’t tell anyone how to be Happy. I wouldn’t know how to even begin. All I could say is to hold on to it. That thing, that person, that pet. Whatever you can’t live without. Do whatever you can to keep it-whether that’s marriage, travelling halfway across the world or chaining it up in the attic with a small bowl and a bucket for them to go to the toilet in. Never let it go. Fight. And if you do have to say goodbye, because loving means letting go sometimes, don’t hide. Go out. Find happiness again. Keep fighting.

Shit guys, I don’t know. Only reason I’m still here is because I owe some people.

The A Word. No. Not that one. The other one.

If you read my last blog, you will know that I have recently come to a realisation about myself. As I have come to quite a few realisations about myself over the years and spent quite a lot of time complaining about them to everyone who will listen, I decided that I would not make such a big deal about this latest thing. And so, with that in mind, here I am, making a big deal about the fact that I am Asexual.

For years, I have tried to get a Girlfriend because I thought that was what I was supposed to do. I was about eighty per cent sure that I wasn’t gay, and the two crushes that I had between the age of seventeen and the age of twenty four seemed to support this. These crushes were pretty damn intense, but for all that I never had any desire to do anything with either of these people beyond hand holding. The idea of a celebrity fantasy eluded me as well; more often than not I just grabbed a name out of thin air if someone asked me if I fancied anyone. Sex scenes on TV, films and books left me pretty cold-uncomfortable and boring viewing at best. I did have a Kelly Brook poster for a while, because that was what I thought that was what I was supposed to do. It was a pretty big relief to find out that everyone thought it was kind of gross, because then I could get rid of it.

I joined Tinder, I joined OkCupid, I joined all manner of dating websites, but I never gave it more than a cursory effort before I made up some excuse and deleted the app I was using at the time. With a great wailing and gnashing of teeth to be sure, but I still got rid of it because deep down I knew that any person I talked to might one day want something that I simply was not able to give.

(Before anyone says anything, I am fully aware that Asexual people are capable of being in romantic relationships. It’s just that the only person I can think of who I would be open to pursuing a relationship with probably finds me a tiresome idiot at best, so that would not happen even if they weren’t already incredibly happy.)

Gradually I started to become aware that I might not be on my own. Bojack Horseman and The Asexual Visibility Network (AVEN) helped. What also helped was getting an official diagnoses of ASD in June. It got me thinking that I wasn’t broken, just different, and that I could either hide from the differences or own them. This is me trying to own all parts of my identity, and while I can never make it up to all the people I have hurt, annoyed or otherwise upset to get here, I know that I will never hurt anyone ever again by pretending to be something I’m not.

That’s the abridged version, but you get the idea. I had the opportunity to actually say all that out loud this evening. My entire family was there, eating dinner, and there would not have been a better opportunity to be honest with them, but I didn’t say a thing. I did what I always did in social situations and kept quiet. Because all this is easier to write down than to say out loud, apparently.

This won’t define me. I’m going to try to keep that promise to myself at least. I have run the risk of letting other aspects of my being define me completely, so I know the warning signs. I know when to stop now. I can’t be Just Adam. I tried being Just Adam, I almost died. Twice. But I can also recognise that we are all made of different components, and this-whatever it is-is one of mine.

Well, I failed completely to come out once this evening. No-one can say I failed twice.

Update

So what’s been going on with me?

I haven’t blogged in quite a while. For actually quite a good reason this time-I’ve been busy writing. I’ve written an article that is going to be published on Syfy Wire, a short story that might be published, and an article about Rick and Morty that has already been published. Check it out.

I’m also in the process of writing a young adult novel. The project has had a couple of false starts, and has only in this draft become a YA novel, but it’s slowly coming together. I might actually try to get this one published. It certainly has more chance of getting published than the novel I wrote for NanoWrimo last year. Here’s a hint for all you aspiring authors out there: do not try to fix time travel. This is good advice in general. But if you really must write a book about it, do not try to solve all the logical inconsistencies. Your brain will melt and the manuscript will be a mess. Don’t do it.

So…what else is new?

I’m back into Doughnuts. In a big way.

I’m thinking I might grow a beard. That is also something that is currently happening.

I’ve been thinking a lot about labels and how to define yourself. Some people can go through their whole lives without thinking about their identity too deeply. They are there and that is good enough. Some, through birth or social circumstance, are forced to consider their identity, their label, every single day and are faced with the choice of shaking it off and trying to be as “normal” as possible or embracing and exploring it and taking pride or strength from a smaller but equally important community. Then there are those whose identity is seemingly in a constant state of flux. They may have become aware of their otherness comparatively late. They may have known, but tried to hide it. They may still hide it, fearing what might happen if people ever found out, or worse-that they won’t be believed. That they will not be feared, or hated, but dismissed. And if nobody trusts them when they say how they feel, how can these people ever trust themselves?

Relax. Calm down. I’m not going to turn this into a thing. God knows I don’t have a decent track record when it comes to keeping secrets-I’ve shared details of depressive episodes, anxiety attacks and of my struggle with Anorexia. The last diagnoses I received I have basically yelled from the rooftops, prompting some people to warn me about using a medical condition to define myself. I’ve written a lot and spoken to people who would much rather be doing anything else. I need to know why I am the way I am.

My point is that I have been trying to find my identity for years. I’ve made no secret of it. Unlike those who can look in a mirror and see themselves for what they are, I am one of those annoying people who needs to break down everything into smaller, manageable chunks. I know it is all me in the end. I just need to know what parts make up the whole.

Now you’ve sat through all that, you probably deserve to know what the hell I am talking about.

This is the year I’m finally being completely honest with myself. And, to be honest, I don’t want sex. I have never really wanted sex. I’ve had crushes on people. Exactly two. But it has mainly been a desire for a deeper friendship than anything physical. I’ve joined OKCupid and Tinder and all that, but the expectation has driven me away. I just don’t see the appeal. A lot of my Depression has come from me trying to force myself to have a “healthy interest”. I thought I needed to be in the game, for want of a better expression, and made a great deal of noise when my half-cocked attempts inevitably failed. But I didn’t know what else to do.

I have hurt people and scared people because I wanted to be normal, and there is no excuse for that. All I can do is move forward. I am not going to make a fuss. This is the only thing I will write about it. I’m not going to talk about it unless someone comes to me first. If you want to find out more, here is a link. But if you want the short version, I might be Asexual. And there is nothing wrong with that. Christ knows how I’m going to tell my parents, if at all. But there it is.

The most positive thing is that I’m finally getting my Depression under control. I have identified the two main factors and am facing them head on. I am not using one or the other as a foundation for an identity; more like I am using them as building blocks. I am building me.

And, as I mentioned earlier, me will have a beard. Hopefully.

Oh, and I’m going to Comic-Con tomorrow. That’ll be fun.

Stay tuned for more articles, personal revelations, and pictures of Doughnuts.

Some thoughts on Dating

So here’s the thing.

For years-literally years-I have bemoaned the fact that I have never been in a relationship. I have written long, boring blogs about how ugly I am, how nobody will ever love me. And while I experienced two very intense crushes that quickly became sources of guilt and anxiety, I did nothing.

Eventually I did do something. I joined Tinder, and OKCupid and a plethora of other dating websites. I was determined not to be left behind anymore. That was what was driving me. I didn’t want to be left behind. I didn’t want to be the only person who had never had a girlfriend or had sex. I didn’t, and still don’t, have any idea what I would have done if things had actually progressed to the point where sex would have been an issue. So intimate. So physical. No boundaries, all that mess. I guess more than anything it would have been nice to have someone to go running and watch the Arrowverse with. I didn’t think of people in those terms. I still don’t. Pretty? Sure. Hot? I don’t even know what that means.

I’ve made connections. I’ve spoken to people, lots of people. I’ve even been on a date. But I’ve always stopped things from going any further than that because I honestly don’t know if I want things to go any further than that.

I’ve been looking at possible answers to my question.

I have lots of things. Mental Health issues. Autism that I am just now coming to terms with. Things that have helped me, in a twisted way, to know myself.

But I don’t know what this means.

Picking the right Dating App using your level of Attractiveness.

I have an on again/off again relationship with Dating Apps. But while I alternate between poring over my phone obsessively and sitting in the dark watching Bojack Horseman while wondering what the point of me even is, there are many others who take online dating a lot more seriously. Who have even managed to get swiped right and then dates which have progressed into relationships.

It is tempting, if you are single, to think that you might be one of those people. One of those who will meet someone special online. But whoa there. You can’t just download any old app and start swiping. You need a game plan. A goal. An idea of which App is actually right for you. What’s that? You don’t really care what I, someone who has yet to even hold hands, has to say about online dating and relationships? That is very closed minded. And frankly rude.

You will probably join Tinder when getting into online dating. Everyone joins Tinder when they start online dating. It is the Charmander of Dating Apps. However, what many people quickly realise is that they are simply not attractive enough to even have it on their phone, much less have a working account. Your selfie will pale in comparison with the Gilmore Girls extras that populate Tinder. Their selfies are beautiful. Their bios are confident and sexually charged. They don’t need writing prompts-they know exactly what to say and how to say it. And once they’ve said it and the deed is done, they will bid their lover farewell and do it all again. Because the people who are good at Tinder do not need Tinder. For them it is the same as ordering a Pizza online. They could do it themselves, but it’s been a long day and they can’t be arsed. In short, only suitable for eights and up.

For the more sedate, serious dater there is OKCupid. Made up of real people with lengthy bios and clear criteria for what they are looking for, OKCupid is ideal for people who want to chat and get to know the person behind the photo before asking them if they would like, you know, want to meet up or something? Please? I will admit that there is potential here for serious misuse of the messaging service. Harassment. Requests for nudes. Constant requests to find out how you are. Dick pics. More Harassment. But it is worth it to find the one person who can hold a conversation and hasn’t shown you their penis. I can only assume.

Match.com is basically OKCupid for people over thirty. It tells me that you should love your imperfections. Guys. Come on. Better therapists than you have tried and failed. Keep walking.

There are many apps and services marketed to the more “Adult” market. And we all know what that means. You’ll meet up with sexy singles who will watch Panorama with you, discuss whether it is worth getting a new table next time you go to IKEA, and help you fill in your tax return. That’s deductible, you naughty boy!

There are some very attractive people on Grindr. I mean, you know, in a nice way. Approachable. I don’t see what else I can say. I contain multitudes and will try anything once, and urge you, dear reader, to do the same. Anyone will feel welcome on Grindr.

I don’t know what Clover is. And neither does Clover. Go nuts.

So there you have it. The best dating app is the one you avoid. But if you can’t, don’t be afraid to fight dirty.

Alphabet Soup

I'm writing a book. It will be the second one I have written, and hopefully the first that will actually be published. Right now I am at Stage Four, which any creative type will tell you is the stage where you delete the whole bloated mess in front of you and start again. At this rate my debut novel should be on the shelves by Christmas 2040. Reserve your copy today!

While I sift through my notes and have a bit of a cry, please enjoy this MySpace survey I filled out to put off actually doing any work.

ALPHABET

A

-Available?
For what? This has not gotten off to a good start.

-Age?
27. Though mentally I am obviously about sixteen.

-Annoyance?
High-Pitched noises. The sound of vacuums and hand dryers. Noise in general.

B

-Beer?
Cider.

-Birthday?
13th April. Yes. It was a Friday. No. I am not a Hellspawn. I checked.

-Best Friends?
I'm not really sure I have one. I have friends, but I don't think they would consider me their best friend.

-Best Feeling in the World?
Running. It is the only acceptable arena where I can pretend that I am the Flash.

– Blind or Deaf?
I'd rather be mute. It's not as though I talk much anyway. I doubt I would notice.

-Best Weather?
Probably a sunny Autumn day. Cold enough that you have to wear a jacket, but still warm enough that you don't have to worry about freezing rain or snow.

-Been in Love?
Okay. So. I started noticing Girls comparatively late. When I did find people I fancied, I went too far and drove them away, along with pretty much everyone else. A little later I met someone I genuinely did care about, but I was afraid of driving them away. I didn't want them to hate me. So I acted in ways that were odd, immature and downright disrespectful of others at times because I wanted just to be around them and know what they were thinking and be there for them and all that rubbish. In short, I fucked everything up. And I'm still living with it.

To answer the question, I don't know.

-Been on Stage?
I've accepted awards and stuff. And my diploma from University, I think that counts.

-Believe in Magic?
It's probably just incredibly advanced technology.

C

-Candy?
It's okay, I think. I like Pick and Mix.

-Colour?
Blue or Yellow. Or both.

-Chocolate/Vanilla?
Depends on the context.

-Chinese/Mexican Food?
Chinese. They have ribs and egg rolls.

-Cake or Pie?
You can tell an American wrote this, can't you? I mean, what British person would choose a Ginsters over a slice of cake?

-Continent to Visit
Australia.

-Cheese
I have no strong feelings one way or the other. I have no idea how people can get so emotional about it.

D

Day or Night?
The Lonely Stoner seems to free his mind at night?

Dancing in the Rain?
I've gone running in the rain. Which probably does not count.

E
-Eyes?
Blue. Or possibly green. Or possibly both, depending on the light! #Pretentious

-Everyone's Got….
The ability to have a conversation, which is more than me.

-Ever failed a class?
Maths. I am terrible at Maths. So bad that one year at school they gave me a certificate when I got a C minus. They had just expected Ds and Es up to that point, and I remain to this day The only person to fail the GCSE maths paper that has a pass mark of nine. Not ninety. Nine.

F
-First thoughts upon waking up?
Here we go again. I am a miserable twat, aren't I?

-Food?
After a few years of trying to starve myself, I think I've got my relationship with food back. I'm eating Ice Cream now and everything.

-Favourite Body Part on the Opposite Sex?
There is literally no answer I can give that won't make me look creepy or weird. I'm on to you, MySpace.

G
-Greatest Fear?
Being crushed by a crowd of people.

That was oddly specific.

-Goals?
Write a book. Be kinder.

-Get along with your Parents?
I have to, because I kind of owe them my life. See: Anorexia.

H
-Hair Colour?
Brown

-Height?
170cm. I don't know what that is in feet and cannot be bothered to Google it.

-Happy?
I try. I do try. It might not seem like it sometimes, but I do.

-Holiday?
Big disruption. Can see the appeal, but I also like knowing what I am doing on a day to day basis.

-How do you want to die?
Look, it doesn't matter. In about a year or if there is a movie coming out, I will be bought back to life by the Scarlet Witch or a Cosmic Cube or something.

I
-Ice Cream?
Ben and Jerry's Peanut Butter Cup. The best kind of cup.

-Instrument?
Of destruction!

J
-Jewellery?
I wear a watch. That isn't jewellery. I don't know why I said that.

-Job?
I have a job, but can't say what it is online because of security guidelines. It is nowhere near as interesting as you might think.

K
-Kids?
I don't think I will ever have kids. Just as well, really. I'd only end up calling it Daenerys or something.

-Kickboxing or Karate?
Kickboxing. I did a bit of Taekwondo when I was trying to look cool, and it's actually closer to a Kickboxing than Karate.

-Keep a Journal?
Yes. It's basically where all my ideas go to die.

L
-Love:
Exists. I do believe that love exists. I just know that it is a privilege and not a right.

-Letter:
Email. No-one uses Letters anymore.

-Laughed so hard you cried?
I don't think so?

M
-Milk Flavour?
Inpatient therapy has left me a desire to never want to drink milk again for as long as I live.

-Movies
Marvel, Horror, DC. The DC Cinematic Universe is not terrible. Come at me, internet.

-McD's or BK?
This question has made me realise I have not had a burger in ages. Now I really want a burger.

N
-Number?
6. I just think it's a good number.

O
-One wish?
To leave the world a better place than I found it. Or at least attain a basic understanding of body language.

-Oldest Friends?
They know who they are.

P
-Perfect Pizza?
The TJ's Seafood Special. Onions, Tuna, Anchovies and Sweetcorn. Before you judge me, I would like to point out that I am doing a MySpace quiz at the age of 27. The evidence suggests that I really do not care.

Q
-Q-Tip?
Something you put in your ear to clean it.

R
-Reason to Cry?
I don't really cry. You'd think that I would, but I don't. I just feel empty. Reasons to feel empty?

-Radio Station?
Radio 1 or Magic, depends on the mood.

-Roll your tongue?
Sure. Okay.

S
-Shoe Size?
Seven. Seven and a Half!

-Salad Dressing?
Which one is the orange one? That's the nice one.

-Sushi?
Yes. Even at my worst, yes.

-Skinny Dipped?
The world is just not ready for me with my shirt off.

-In the shower?
No. I'm doing a quiz. You should have worked this out by now.

-Strawberries/Blueberries?
Blueberries.

T
-Tattoos?
Nope. The drill whining just makes my stomach turn.

-Time for Bed?
About 11. I'm super wild.

U
-Unpredictable?
Hahaha No.

V
-Vacation Spot(s)?
I liked America. I would like to see more cities. Maybe the Rockies?

W
-Weakness?
I suppose one might argue that I can be a teeny tiny bit hard on myself. Occasionally.

-Which one of your friends acts the most like you?
None of them, thank fuck. One is enough.

-Who makes you laugh the most?
Rick and Morty. They are not real people. I am aware of that.

-Worst feeling?
Knowing that even if things went as well as they could, I will never click with anyone because they can tell I am a creepy disaster.

-Want to be a Model?
No. Why would anyone?

-Worst Weather?
FUCKING SNOW.

X
X-Rays?
My teeth, nose, foot, and skull. I've lived an interesting life.

Y
Year it is Now?
2017.

Yellow?
Power Ranger. Trini is the best.

Z
Zoo Animals?
Pangolins. That's an animal you wouldn't mind having for your sigil on Game of Thrones. All the other houses would be too busy trying to figure out what the hell it is, giving you a clear run at the Iron Throne. Bloodless victory.

Hope y'all enjoyed that. I should get back to work now.

Some things to think about when watching “To The Bone.”

Content Warning: this is a blog where I will be addressing Eating Disorders and their associated behaviours, as well as the treatment of these conditions. If you find that sort of thing triggering, please stop reading. 

Let’s make one thing perfectly clear.


Anorexics do not watch movies about Anorexia or read books about Eating Disorders because they want to understand their condition.  They don’t do it to feel less alone or find the strength to recover. They look at those films and those autobiographies and novels, and they see instruction manuals.  Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate the importance of raising awareness. I just feel that there is a way to do it without either glamourising Eating Disorders or making sufferers feel like lazy frauds who should be working harder. (All of them could get skinny and be totally fine, why can’t you, you weakling?)

To The Bone, a film that is currently on Netflix, is gaining a lot of publicity. Some of it good. Some of it bad. Is it, as the Director argues, a way of starting a conversation? Or is it just deeply unethical and faintly ridiculous? 

The film follows Ellen, a sardonic twenty-year old with Anorexia, who falls under the treatment of the apparently unconventional Dr. Beckham, and her journey to accepting that life is worth living. Most of the cast and crew have had experience with Eating Disorders in one form or another and it portrays at least one male and one POC with Anorexia and Bulimia. So in that regard it’s ahead of most of the other films about Anorexia. These other films were made in the early eighties, but we’ll gloss over that for now. 

As a former Anorexic, I was morbidly curious about this film. So I watched it. And now I have some thoughts.

-DR. BECKHAM IS NOT VERY GOOD AT HIS JOB.

I am still confused by Dr. Beckham (played by Keane Reeves). Is he really that unconvential? His methods revolve around Healthy Eating and Talking Therapy. Like every other treatment centre on the planet. Except here he swears a lot, and patients are allowed to choose how much or how little they eat. I am not making this up. The patients at his treatment centre are given the option of not eating, and are then allowed to move around and are made to do chores afterwards. What the actual fuck? Did I fall asleep? Are we actually on some sort of malnourished dude ranch now? Is this some twisted way of keeping a group of vulnerable young women under his thrall for as long as he can? 

-LUKE IS A GARBAGE PERSON

Luke (Alex Sharp) is a young man with Anorexia. He is a dancer. He is a pretentious bully who, in between quoting Raymond Chandler, taunts his fellow patients with food under the guise of emotional support. He allows and encourages Ellen to exercise because he wants to go on a date with her. He acts in such a way that would get him kicked out of any halfway responsible treatment centre, or at least punched in the face, but since this is Dr. Beckham’s House of Fun he is allowed to go around being as whimsical as he bloody pleases. Of course, as he is a male, he is presented as one of the strongest forces for change in Ellen’s life. Her love for him ends up saving her. Yay? 

-THE OTHER PATIENTS ARE CARICATURES 

White? Check. Financially stable? Check. Completely dependent on Dr. Beckham and Luke for emotional support? Check and check. There is one POC who is almost an afterthought. That’s it. This thing affects everyone. Remember.

-AT ONE POINT, ELLEN’S MOTHER FEEDS HER WITH A BOTTLE IN ORDER TO REESTABLISH A HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP.



If anyone had tried that shit with me,  I would have called the cops.

-TREATMENT IS READILY AND ALWAYS AVAILABLE.

Near the end of the film, Ellen runs away to Phoenix for a week. She eventually comes back and everything’s fine. She’s not at the bottom of a waiting list, she hasn’t lost her place due to being uncooperative, and she doesn’t have to jump through literally hundreds of metaphorical hoops to go back to treatment. That must be nice.

When it comes to Anorexia, I know that I have been relatively lucky. I was only ever hospitalised once, and on a ward that offered a lot more licence than most. I met people who had been in and out of treatment on wards where you had no privacy, no trust, nothing to distract you from the Herculean task of getting better. You want to start a conversation about Anorexia treatment? Show that. Show someone going to the toilet in front of a Nurse with the door open. Show someone actually getting a tube in their stomach. Show someone screaming and clawing at their arms if their brand of yogurt changes. Show someone crying and curling up in a ball when their portions get bigger. Show how few friends they have left. Show how decidedly un-witty and dull and tearful it makes a person.

Then we’ll talk.

Love Island raises more questions than Answers

I was going to write a whole mini-essay on the things I have learned watching Love Island, but that is clearly not going to work.  The problem is that Love Island-broadcast nightly on ITV2-is one of the most confusing things I have ever seen. And I’ve sat through three seasons of The Leftovers. 


I just…I don’t know, you guys. I really don’t. Here are just a few of the questions I have.

1) What do any of these people hope to achieve? Like, there’s no cash prize as far as I can make out. Sending them on another holiday would be pointless because they are basically on holiday already. So what? I mean they can’t expect any of these relationships to have a long-term future. It would be like going to University and hooking up with someone from Aberdeen. Oh, they say they love you in the heat of the moment, but you can fuck right off if you think they are moving into your Mum’s in Reading once the three years are up.

2) Is Caroline Flack still going out with Harry Styles? This is probably something I can research myself, but I can’t be bothered. Has anyone pointed out that all the members of One Direction gone for older women? It’s not a bad thing, just a bit odd.

3) Who comes up with the challenges? So far we’ve had twerking, groping, and cucumbers. And it’s only going downhill from there. So who thinks of them? Do they have a writer for the Daily Sport chained up in the basement? Are there daily seances with the spirit of Kenneth Williams?

4) Why do they keep introducing new people? They know this has to end at some point, right? Unless…oh God. No. No. A thousand times, No.

5) Why on Earth would you have sex on Television? I refuse to believe any of those yo-yos kept it a secret, so at the very least their Mums would have been watching. Try explaining that at Sunday Lunch.

6) Why would you have sex in the same room as everyone else? It’s one thing if they had separate rooms, but they are all in the same bedroom together. Some of those people must be trying to sleep. Is it a try before you buy situation or are the other contestants issued with noise-cancelling headphones and photos of Marlon Brando from Last Tango in Paris?

7) What is good chat? 

8) What is bad chat?

9) What is Grumpy Chat?


10) Would it be possible to send some Ugly people in? Or really just average-looking people. Just really fuck with their heads.
Love Island is on ITV2 tonight and every night until they hand over the Nuclear Launch codes and ten billion dollars cash.

How to Know when you should Mark Yourself Safe.

Facebook allows its users to let their friends know that they are safe. This feature is incredibly useful following, say, a Terror Attack, but when is it appropriate to let your friends, followers and those one or two people you don’t really like but keep around anyway because you like to compare your life to their shitshow whenever you are feeling down that you are okay?

Wonder no more! 

-Take a look at your surroundings. Has anything exploded? Have you been forced to flee from something? Are you in your pyjamas? If the answer to these questions are No, No and I prefer the term ‘Negligee’, then chances are you should get off Facebook so that people who actually might be in danger can use it.

-How scared are you on a scale of one to ten? Anything higher than four means you can’t just turn off the DVD and watch American Dad instead. Get off Facebook.

-Are you desperate to feel included? If so, there are far less offensive ways to get comments that wish you well. Share personal medical details or jump out of a second storey window. 

-Telling everyone to “stay safe” is about a useful as a copy of The Guardian on the set of Good Morning Britain. It is tempting to use this as a substitute for marking yourself as safe-you aren’t lying and it makes you look all calm and cool and in control while at the same time empathic-but don’t. Just don’t. Unless you are stronger than a locomotive, faster than a speeding bullet, or capable of doing anything even remotely useful, just back off. There are those who need to communicate more than you do.

I should probably stop this before I get lynched.