In between wrestling with an alleged “clipon” bow tie that doesn’t clip on and a late exercise session, I am making my new year’s resolutions.
- To lose weight. This has been up there for years.
- To work hard. No more distractions.
- To add to my wardrobe clothes of every colour. I don’t discriminate, except against feminine clothes. Those are ick to me. See bow tie dilemma above.
- To finally get these wisdom teeth out. They are killing me.
- To finally get an exercise bike where the left pedal doesn’t fall off every five minutes. Or fix the existing one to a tolerable standard.
- To be more antiestablishment. There are establishment hacks who want me jailed for saying the truth. Well I’m not going to stop. Besides, aren’t you too busy starting a war with Russia to care?
Happy New Year folks, here’s to one with fewer famous people dying.
Because it is.
No matter how hard you try, you can’t build your perfect world from reality.
Fantasy is tailored for the mind. Everyone having their own vision of the events before them. This is why films based on popular books are usually underwhelming. Just compare the Harry Potter books to Fantastic Beasts- a great film I saw today. When there’s a plot unfolding before you, the mind craves more. A treat for the imagination rather than a simulation of someone else’s. Plus there’s a pretty surprising cameo towards the end.
Only settle for the best. Free your mind and- planets aligning- your life will follow.
Ding dong ding.
Here we go once again
To bring the new year in.
Drinks and thinks and other stinks
And cats and dogs and cats
Let the rain fall down the drain
And the snow come down the hole.
(Automatic poetry by Szin Fletcher on the cusp of a new year, 29/12/16)
I see a world where individuality is a crime.
Where our brainchips are constantly scanned for thoughtcrime and other violations.
Where if you even THINK about wearing ONE item of non-approved clothing you will be penalised.
Where if you even THINK about eating ONE crumb of forbidden food you will be penalised.
Where if you make a one-thousandth-of-a-second thought about how unfair this is you will be penalised.
And what will the penalty be?
It depends on the individual.
High-rankers in the one world government will face only a token fine.
Lower government officials will be suspended.
Other 1%ers will get a very very short period in a cushy minimum-security jail.
And the 99% will be locked up indefinitely, subject to some of the most brutal forms of torture ever to exist.
Carrie Fisher is dead.
Leia sprung up at the height of second-wave feminism, the more radical adherants believing that attractive women were constantly being objectified by men in a bid to weaken them. Fisher’s character, just like Lynda Carter’s Wonder Woman of the same vintage, showed that one could be sexy AND strong.
To this day, there has been argument whether Leia’s characterisation, in particular the metal bikini scene in Return of the Jedi, was objectifying. Fisher herself changed opinion on the matter several times, but her most recent opinion was that it wasn’t. Now third-wave feminism was in at the time (and remains in) and many proponents criticised her for saying that. No doubt some of these same people will blame the drug problems that eventually led to her death as patriarchal pressure, which is completely wrong.
She was born into fame and raised in fame. This upbringing, her meteoric rise from that and her strained relationship with her parents, Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher, caused her a lot of stress which led to her abuse of drugs, especially cocaine. By the time filming began on The Force Awakens she had dropped a lot of weight and was clean. However, the cocaine had taken a toll on her body and this eventually manifested itself in a massive heart attack where she stopped breathing for ten minutes. Over Christmas she stabilised, but recovery was never guaranteed and she died peacefully this morning. A tragic end to the portrayer of one of the most iconic female characters in cinema history.
May the force be with you, Leia.
Recently, the University of Sussex released a list of guidelines regarding gender language in official contexts.
It includes the demand that all participants in meetings state their preferred pronouns even when known. This is not the way to accomodate those of us who use gender-neutral language. Rather, it will increase the stigma against them by forcing people who feel that their gender is obvious to state their preferred language. The people who use gender-neutral language- the nonbinaries, the abolitionists, the nonconformists- are a small minority to begin with. Most peoples’ gender can be inferred immediately by their dress, sex characteristics and other nuances, even in this day and age when gender-neutral clothing is the order of the day. Six-foot-five bearded men in lumberjack shirts saying “my name is Dave, my pronouns are he, him and his” is verging on the ridiculous and this is coming from someone who is a strong advocate for GNL.
Furthermore, the guidelines also state that somebody whose gender is not known must be referred to as “they”. This is not only a commonly-accepted practice in English that most adhere to to begin with, but the wording is ripe for taking things even further. If Dave, the six-foot-five bearded lumberjack, doesn’t state his pronouns are we to refer to him as “they”? Even I would find that difficult- I do believe that all people will be referred to by gender-neutral language in the future, but forcing it straight into action as seen here ensures that GNL will not be accepted by the mainstream for a while, possibly even years. We have seen that things which were seen as “PC gone mad” years ago are now accepted because they required time. Besides, I have stated before that singular they, while gramatically correct at least in British English, can be ambiguous and I prefer the alternative (specifically designed to sound natural) se.
The takeaway is that forcing people to state their pronouns and take extra care not to infer a persons’ gender even when they are explicitly male or female is not only the antithesis of progressiveism, but it can be detrimental to those who genuinely prefer gender-neutral language. It ensures that GNL will be pooh-poohed by the average Joes in the street for a long time to come.
It’s a shame really.
I dyed my hair purple yesterday. Went fantastically well with the 1970s style jacket I recieved. Very reminiscent of something Marc Bolan would wear. My Glam Rock Mod King aesthetic is beginning to take shape.
Just as I was writing this the news came through of George Michael’s death. 2016 really has been a shitty year. These celebrity deaths often come in threes too- yesterday Rick Parfitt of Status Quo and today George Michael. Who’ll come tomorrow? Carrie Fisher is officially in stable condition but brain damage- survivable or not- is still a possibility and the Queen was too ill to make the St. Pauls service this morning.
I’m leaving my options open.
I cannot wait for this year to be over.