30 Jan 2010

Mediation on Memory.

(How posh is that title?)
I was thinking today about how appaling I am at PE, and about how, at good-old Alcester High School I was always picked last when the teachers let individual students pick their teams.
BIG CONFESSION: It never actually bothered me.
I was 15, I think I'd realised that I was about as much use to my team as a stuffed teddy bear. I used to play a little game with myself when we played basketball: I'd see how long I could stand on the same spot on the court without moving before my team yelled at me. Even my PE Teachers used to take pity and let me sit on the stage and read my books during lessons of lacrosse.
My freind Alice wasn't much better than me, and so when the team-picking happned we'd stand by eachother like conjoined twins and say that we came as a pair and had to be picked as such. It was amusing to annoy other (sporty) people in that maner.
Useless post.
PS: I'm going to see the last night of Arabian Nights tonight. I'm expecting greatness.

23 Jan 2010

I'm Feeling A Little Tipsy


Marry Me? Maybe? Yes? Brilliant.
(He wasn't there with Georgia Moffat so there's still a chance.)

D'ya think he'll overlook my lack of penis and marry me too?

20 Jan 2010


I feel irrationally (and stupidly) stressed about the National Television Awards.
In my head I have a small list of things that MUST win in that category or the world will implode:
1) TOP GEAR MUST WIN. Because Jeremy Clarkson deserves to be Prime Minister, frankly.
2) DOCTOR WHO MUST WIN. Because it's the last year the the dream team will be able to go up and collect the award (even if most of them have been stolen by LA. If they win they better be back.)

So. If they don't win, expect me to be very upset and angry. I think it's kind of funny I expect anyone to be interested in this =]

11 Jan 2010

Today I am feeling F.A.T

And so I read this. I have this saved as a document in my computer, for days such as today when I need a little perspective because... even though I'm not supposed to sometimes I do wish that I looked exactly like the waifs in the magazines who seem improbably beautiful because I can see their ribs. I shouldn't feel like this. But some days I do. And this is for those days. It's my idol again (dear old JK Rowling).


Being thin. Probably not a subject that you ever expected to read about on this website, but my recent trip to London got me thinking...It started in the car on the way to Leavesden film studios. I whiled away part of the journey reading a magazine that featured several glossy photographs of a very young woman who is either seriously ill or suffering from an eating disorder (which is, of course, the same thing); anyway, there is no other explanation for the shape of her body. She can talk about eating absolutely loads, being terribly busy and having the world's fastest metabolism until her tongue drops off (hooray! Another couple of ounces gone!), but her concave stomach, protruding ribs and stick-like arms tell a different story. This girl needs help, but, the world being what it is, they're sticking her on magazine covers instead. All this passed through my mind as I read the interview, then I threw the horrible thing aside.But blow me down if the subject of girls and thinness didn't crop up shortly after I got out of the car. I was talking to one of the actors and, somehow or other, we got onto the subject of a girl he knows (not any of the Potter actresses – somebody from his life beyond the films) who had been dubbed 'fat' by certain charming classmates. (Could they possibly be jealous that she knows the boy in question? Surely not!)'But,' said the actor, in honest perplexity, 'she is really not fat.''"Fat" is usually the first insult a girl throws at another girl when she wants to hurt her,' I said; I could remember it happening when I was at school, and witnessing it among the teenagers I used to teach. Nevertheless, I could see that to him, a well-adjusted male, it was utterly bizarre behaviour, like yelling 'thicko!' at Stephen Hawking. His bemusement at this everyday feature of female existence reminded me how strange and sick the 'fat' insult is. I mean, is 'fat' really the worst thing a human being can be? Is 'fat' worse than 'vindictive', 'jealous', 'shallow', 'vain', 'boring' or 'cruel'? Not to me; but then, you might retort, what do I know about the pressure to be skinny? I'm not in the business of being judged on my looks, what with being a writer and earning my living by using my brain...I went to the British Book Awards that evening. After the award ceremony I bumped into a woman I hadn't seen for nearly three years. The first thing she said to me? 'You've lost a lot of weight since the last time I saw you!''Well,' I said, slightly nonplussed, 'the last time you saw me I'd just had a baby.'What I felt like saying was, 'I've produced my third child and my sixth novel since I last saw you. Aren't either of those things more important, more interesting, than my size?' But no – my waist looked smaller! Forget the kid and the book: finally, something to celebrate!So the issue of size and women was (ha, ha) weighing on my mind as I flew home to Edinburgh the next day. Once up in the air, I opened a newspaper and my eyes fell, immediately, on an article about the pop star Pink. Her latest single, 'Stupid Girls', is the antidote-anthem for everything I had been thinking about women and thinness. 'Stupid Girls' satirises the talking toothpicks held up to girls as role models: those celebrities whose greatest achievement is un-chipped nail polish, whose only aspiration seems to be getting photographed in a different outfit nine times a day, whose only function in the world appears to be supporting the trade in overpriced handbags and rat-sized dogs. Maybe all this seems funny, or trivial, but it's really not. It's about what girls want to be, what they're told they should be, and how they feel about who they are. I've got two daughters who will have to make their way in this skinny-obsessed world, and it worries me, because I don't want them to be empty-headed, self-obsessed, emaciated clones; I'd rather they were independent, interesting, idealistic, kind, opinionated, original, funny – a thousand things, before 'thin'. And frankly, I'd rather they didn't give a gust of stinking chihuahua flatulence whether the woman standing next to them has fleshier knees than they do. Let my girls be Hermiones, rather than Pansy Parkinsons. Let them never be Stupid Girls. Rant over.


(Taken from the JK Rowling Official Site. I really hope this doesn't cause anyone any offence because it's not meant. It's meant to reassure others as it's reassured me.)

I'll go for the polite werewolf.

“I do not understand this. Again, its bad boy syndrome isn’t it? It’s very depressing...Girls, stop going for the bad guy. Go for a nice man in the first place. It took me 35 years to learn that, but I am giving you that nugget free, right now, at the beginning of your love lives…”
- J.K. Rowling

Oh, JK.
(and I'm sorry if you think this is weird.)

5 Jan 2010

Snow Day BABY.

Yeah, you heard it... SNOW DAY.

Got sent home from school so I'm all wrapped up drinking tea and eating toast and watching how beautiful everything is. And we've been premptively given the day off tomorrow!

So hopefully I'll be up to Alice's to sledge down her hills like we did last year.

I love the snow. It's unequivically magical.

4 Jan 2010

New Decade? Pah. Gimme The Old One.

Happy New Year faithfull viewers.
I thought I'd start by examining my Top 10 Things of the last decade because... I feel safer looking back than looking forward. This was the first full-decade I've ever seen, so it was pretty important. I grew from a little girl into a (I hate this expression but it seems fitting) young woman. I guess. So: My Top 10 Things.
1. Harry Potter and JK Rowling.
Thankyou for giving me a role model, and an ambition. Thankyou for telling me the best story and giving me years of going to bed and pretending I was in a Hogwarts dormitory. Thankyou for giving me and endless game of 'lets pretend' where I could be magic. Thankyou.
2. The Summer of 2007.
This was the summer that I stopped trying to be someone I didn't know very well or like very much, and became the girl who wears shoes with stars on and sits cross-legged at dinner and gets inky fingers. This was the summer I realised that I was a wonderful person in my own right and that I could be that person.
3. Alice Arnold, Lauren Rowley, Amelia Caffrey.
It seems unfair to lump these girls together. They could each have pages in their own rights, but I don't have enough numbers. These girls are my best friends, and the first friends who I feel that love me because of my faults and not in spite of them. They are part of the reason that I am who I am at the start of this new year, and shaped who I have been.
4. Young Rogues and Vagabonds.
My theatre group. I had some of the best weeks of my life there, backstage at the Civic hall putting on shows. I fell in silly teenage love there, which felt like the most important thing in the world. I made best-freinds there, and lost them too. I learned (as an only-child) how to be with other people and love it.
5. Alcester High School.
My secondary school, where I grew up more than anywhere and where I discovered that history was important and that I could write and that I could pass maths. The three best teachers that I will ever have in my life taught me there. I made friends and enimies and I cried and I laughed. Sometimes I hated the place and sometimes I cursed it. That school was amazing.
6. Writing.
Pretty self-explanatary. If you write, you know. I guess it gave me another language. And another way to play lets-pretend.
7. David Tennant.
Because he's my only MAJOR 'celebrity' crush, in that cliched teengae girl way of posters on the bedroom wall. Becuase I spent one whole, hot summer hanging around my hometown, struck down by the luck he was there too, and trying to catch a glimpse. Because when I did meet him it was the single most exhillerating feeling in my life. And because his Hamlet cemented completely my love of...
8. Shakespeare and The RSC.
I love The Courtyard Theatre and I love the actors and I love the words and I love the way that he changed the course of literature forever. I love the way that he captures real humanity.
9. America.
It opened my eyes to travel. The people and the places and the variety and the sheer wonder of a country not many people take the chance to explore like we (my mum, my dad and I) do.
10. Reading everything and anything and my Dad reading everything and anything to me.
Proabably the most important thing on this list, as if one thing has made me into the person I am is reading.