You should probably only blog when you’ve got something to say, but I’ve got a bit of a problem. It started last Monday when I realised that I had in fact coincidentally also blogged the previous Monday, which left me in a bit of a predicament. I’ve unwittingly attached a day to my blogging updates. I could throw caution to the wind and leave my blog alone until a bolt of inspiration strikes me and I have to scribble something down, but similarly to my need to have an even number of Facebook friends, and my younger self’s obsession of always having to have my quilt completely crease-less, I feel like I’m being dragged into a whirlpool which isn’t letting me get out of this Monday rut.
I’m erring away from writing anything critical or negative, there’s enough of that about, instead I’m opting for writing a post on things I really like at the minute, or things that are just giving me pure joy.
Musical Theatre Workout
This is a fitness class at my local leisure centre, which is so much fun! It’s only on once a week but I could do it all day, every day. For one whole hour, we basically dance to all the songs from the musicals, from Wicked, to Billy Elliot, to Legally Blonde, every musical you can think of our fitness instructor (who is such a good dancer!) has choreographed dances to, is there really anything better than that?!
This is such a guilty pleasure, and I know it’s not actually reality, but I love the escapism it provides. My favourites are Geordie Shore (groans from the whole nation) and Made in Chelsea. Geordie Shore, apart from the completely questionable antics they get up to, is actually quite funny, and I love that they’re completely unpretentious, something which is hard to come by now the UK has an extra four social classes to clamber through (really BBC, really?!). I don’t like Made in Chelsea quite as much as it’s much slower and there are a LOT of dramatic looks, which makes the actual dialogue quite sparse, but I like the little glimpse you get into a completely different world (these people are nearly all heiresses or just rahdiculously rich!).
Work, work, work…working on my shit
I love this song by Iggy Azalea, especially when it wasn’t played as much, I’ve heard it three times today so I think I’m getting over it – but it’s so catchy and fun!
Erm, so this is another TV thing, but I think American TV is really having a moment right now, or maybe I just never noticed it before. There was always Friends, then Will and Grace, but I think the humour in new American programmes is really spot on. I’m talking programmes like ‘The New Normal‘, ‘New Girl‘ and ‘The Mindy Project‘, which just really seem to have gotten out of the cheesy, canned laughter genre and are actually really funny.
Is there anything bringing a little bit of sunshine into your day at the minute?
On Sunday just gone, I went to the Cake and Bake Show in Manchester, and thinking there’d be lots of yummy cakes on show, I took my camera along. Luckily that I did, as when asked for tasters from the audience I was picked out as the girl with the camera round her neck, so it scored me some yummy freebies!
There was so much on show, my sister and I really didn’t know where to start! The first table we encountered was displays by companies who do weddings and parties etc, not much free tasting, but a lot of creativity!
We had a further browse around the show and came across Stacie Stewart, owner of The Beehive Bakery and ‘Food, Glorious Food‘ judge, carrying out a demonstration of a hazelnut meringue and brownie cake, I then got my two seconds of fame by going up and tasting – I can confirm that it was delicious! She’s also a great personality – as anyone who’s watched ‘Food Glorious Food’ has probably worked out.
We had a general mooch around the massive array of cakes on sale – only actually buying a salted caramel brownie from The Brownie Bar which was delicious, if not a little bit overly gooey.
As well as watching a demonstration by Paul A Young, a lovely chocolatier, we watched a mini with some past contestants and saw even more wonderful cakes from the Clandestine Cake Club, a cake catwalk competition and cakes from the Squires School of Bakery.
Every so often, maybe once every couple of months, I become so obsessed with one item of clothing, accessory or type of shoe, that I can’t stop thinking about it.
If I see someone else wearing the item I’m currently lusting after, I make a mental note – ‘other people are wearing them, you’re not a fool to be besotted, get it before you fall out of love!’.
My current obsession is leather jackets, I already have one, but excuses can be made to justify a new purchase – ‘I bought it five years ago’, ‘everyone’s borrowed it – it’s been to five continents for Gawd’s sake!’.
I could blame these obsessions on other people – fashion magazines force me into feeling uncool if I don’t buy the fashion item du jour – marketing spiel tells me I NEED one, but who am I to blame these outside forces? Surely I’ve got willpower; the freedom to make my own choices?
But there’s this NEED to compulsively purchase new items of clothing, shoes or accessories which has now been so normalised, and although I consider it an unhealthy obsession, we’re made to feel it’s quite okay to go out and buy the latest ‘must-have’; not really giving it a second thought.
And there it is, they’re ‘must-haves’. Is there any more persuasive use of language than coming right out and telling us that we must have that leather jacket, pair of hi-top trainers, figure-hugging dress, tote bag, nail colour, hairstyle, hand cream, eye cream or anything else that has made its way from an idea in Stella McCartney‘s head to the high street rails?
There’s no consequence if the item isn’t bought, apart from looking terribly last season. I mean who wears a trend once it’s over? But there’s still an overarching power that I just can’t deny wants to be fed.
Is it time to check myself in at CCA (Clothes Coveters Anonymous)?
The first step is denial. I guess spending frivolously when I was younger, I’m talking once/twice a week in Primark or H&M, perhaps Topshop if I was feeling particularly frivolous, and not questioning why I needed to have these items, apart from wanting to feel part of the fashion zeitgeist, could be counted as denial. Admitting the problem. Deep breath… my name’s Erin, and I covet clothes. Fixing the problem? I’m sure this is probably what any obsessive would say, but is there any harm if I haven’t actually bought a new leather jacket?
I guess I’d be one of those people walking out of the meeting, flailing my arms in the air and shouting ‘problem?! I don’t have a problem!’, as I’ve made a collection below of the leather jackets that I quite like.
It’s against everything that I should be doing, but I can’t keep following people around hoping they may sit down and take off their jacket so I can take a peek at their label.
I’d be more than willing to hear about any items of clothes you’re currently coveting – have you been a coveter in the past and are in recovery? Let me know.
‘And then I wondered, how could a gal like me flit around New York City, enjoying all it has to offer, own all these shoes; yet only ever write one line…’
The summer after I’d completed my English degree, in the midst of pondering what was to be the next step in my life, I’d considered studying a Masters in Creative Writing. Whilst this was an exciting prospect, I’d questioned what this could offer me in terms of career progression and economic security. As I leaned on the counter of the cafe in which I was working at the time, I came to the supposition that although I was drawn to the Masters, realistically a writer’s life would never be similar to that of Carrie Bradshaw‘s.
I mean, I didn’t fill out the application form using Carrie as my inspiration, but when considering what a career in writing could provide me with, I kind of thought the Sex and the City script writers perhaps over-inflated the amount of Jimmy Choos you could actually buy on a columnist’s wage; as well as portraying a disproportionate shopping, partying and general fun to writing ratio which would be necessary to make it as a writer. No wonder Carrie only ever has to time to write the opening line of her column.
I assume the rest of her column discusses the intricacies of life based on her own experience, which, as someone who is always conscious of not writing anything too personal or offensive, begs the question: how come no one ever discusses the column with Ms Bradshaw, or is offended by her use of real experience as content?! Wouldn’t it be ideal for a writer or anyone who puts their personal opinion into the public sphere to never receive any kind of backlash or opposition?
She gets the odd compliment on her writing at parties; but her friends, lovers and boyfriends never seem to decipher the content of column, and say ‘HEY, when you were talking about that guy you just don’t love anymore, you were talking about me right?’. No, they just seem to carry on oblivious while Carrie dissects her relationships for the whole world to see without so much as a ‘can you stop talking about me in your column please!’
I can’t begrudge her completely, apart from the fact that she’s a fictional character, I actually enjoy writing and if it was my job, I’d be happy to write every day rather than be envious of someone who only sits down at their laptop in a spacious Manhattan flat once a week, in between sipping Cosmos and general hobnobbing…okay so maybe I would be envious of that last part.
I never did take up the offer of doing a Creative Writing Masters, instead opting for a law conversion course which seemed like the sensible decision at the time. Although now, sitting down at my laptop, slipping into some over-sized Y-fronts and tousling my tumbling golden locks, I can’t help but wonder, are the paths that once appeared to us to be the most daunting, sometimes the ones that will be the most fruitful in the end? (So that last bit of ponderment was a bit cheesy but it should now keep me in Mulberry handbags for at least a year, right?).