Posted in Music, Friday Pick

DAA Friday Pick: Rachel Bloom (again!)

The darkness expressed in last weeks post is beginning to dissipate and I’m starting to get back on an even keel again. Horrah! If I do have a little dip then I find myself watching a lot of Rachel Bloom YouTube videos because I am still deep in my fangirl honeymoon period with her. This one makes me laugh so hard I have watched it a hundred times. 

*Blog Update* I know I’ve been a bit quiet on here of late. I’ll be back in the swing of things soon and I’m buzzing with ideas. Exciting times ahead. Can’t wait. 👍🏼

Posted in Friday Pick, Music

DAA Friday Pick: Rachel Bloom

Depression has kicked my arse once again and I’m back in the spiral of self loathing that I’ve spent so long clawing my way out of. 

I know what your thinking “oh, a blogger with depression, what a rarity” and to that I say you are right I won’t bore you with the details here. 

What I will say is that Crazy Ex Girlfriend is one of the best depictions of anxiety and depression I’ve ever seen on television. It also has some killer musical numbers. Originally I avoided this show like the plague because the title seemed so off putting. But then I read loads of blogs telling me not to be. Bloggers with depression liked the show. My people! Therefore I thank the WordPress community for helping me find Rebecca Bunch/Rachel Bloom. She is just the person I need in my living room right now. I’m not talking to anyone else much. 

The song I’ve picked to post today is quite intense and probably won’t make sense out of context. But I love it because it sums up the thought processes of sadness so bloody well. 

As for me I’ll be absolutely fine. Have an amazing weekend y’all. I’ll be over here raising the roof. Whoop!!

Posted in Books

We were liars by E. Lockhart

YA novels aren’t usually my go to when I’m in the market for a new read. This has meant that I’ve missed every literary blockbuster of the last decade. Twilight, Hunger Games and all their accompanying knock offs have completely passed me by.   Two years ago I accidentally stumbled into YA territory when I downloaded The Fault in our Stars by John Green. I read it during a fragile time so the book had me weeping by the end. I wondered, in true Carrie Bradshaw style, if YA was the route to go down for a fix of unashamed emotions and exploration of the human condition?  Then I forgot about it intil I watched a video where Zoella told me I should buy We were liars in WH Smith. I’m far too old to be taking advice from Zoella. I bought …Liars in Waterstones. Because I’m a contrarian. Sort of. 

Blurb

A beautiful and distinguished family.

A private island.

A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.

A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.

A revolution. An accident. A secret.

Lies upon lies.

True love.

The truth.

It’s an whirlwind of a tale focused on the wealthy Sinclair family and their, quite frankly, unenviable family dis functions. The reader quickly gets to recognise that this idyllic private island, and it’s hugely privileged “all American” family that inhabits it, are struggling to keep up a centuries old façade of perfection. Cadence and her band of “liars” are all 15 years old and ready to right the many wrongs. Perhaps with devastating consequences. 

While I enjoyed the story I wouldn’t say I was gripped. The final section of the book didn’t pack the emotional punch I was after. I found myself trying to think back and “do the maths” as it were to see if the plot was tied up. Probably evidence enough I wasn’t overly engrossed. E. Lockhart has a huge back catalogue of work to discover but right now I think I’ll stick to John Green to serve my YA emotional needs. 

Posted in Friday Pick, Music

DAA Friday Pick: Prince Buster

It’s good to be wise

When you’re young

Cos’ you can only be young

But for once

Enjoy yourself

And have lots of fun

So gonna live, my friend

And it will never done

Enjoy yourself

It’s later than you think

Enjoy yourself

Why you’re still in the pink

The years go by

As quickly you blink 

Enjoy yourself

It’s later than you think

Get wisdom, get knowledge

And understanding

Those three were given free

By the maker

Go to school

Learn the rules

Don’t be no faker

It’s not wise, for you

To be a foot stool

So enjoy yourself

It’s later than you think

Enjoy yourself

Why you’re still in the pink

The years go by

As quickly as you blink 

Enjoy yourself

It’s later than you think
😞

Posted in Friday Pick, Music

DAA Friday Pick: Taylor Swift 

I’m now the proud owner of my very own acoustic guitar. I know get me. 

In just a few days I’ve learned an e minor and an a minor. Two of the easiest, most depressing, chords. So I’ve mainly been strumming along to Little By Little by Oasis. I was going post that this week but then I realised I don’t like that song very much. Too much e minor will do that. 

 I want to learn the guitar so I can belt out angst laden teen rock pop anthems ala Avril or Swifty. I know deep down inside that’s the teenage girl I should have been but for me getting bored of guitar and therefore losing my, albeit limited, skills. 

Do not panic. I will not be troubling open mic nights anytime soon. This is a strictly living room based hobby between me and YouTube. 

Ultimately I want to master a vintage swift belter. This ones as good a choice as any. 

Btw if you do know any reasonably priced guitar teachers based in Brighton who also have the patience of a saint then leave a comment below. I might need one…

Posted in 20 Summer Challenge, Books

20 Books of Summer: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood 

I can’t praise this novel enough. I’m irritated with myself that it took me this long to get round to reading it. Where do I start? The beginning I suppose. 

 Synopsis:

Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. She has only one function: to breed. If she deviates, she will, like dissenters, be hanged at the wall or sent out to die slowly of radiation sickness. But even a repressive state cannot obliterate desire – neither Offred’s nor that of the two men on which her future hangs.

This is an absolute beauty of a novel. I do not get on with science fiction as a genre usually. Set ups and exposition tend to smother the story, in my limited experience. But Handmaid’s Tale reveals its premise beautifully. In a way that is compelling, harrowing and at times repulsive. It’s a strange sensation when you both can’t bear to read on because the Handmaid’s fate is so awful but at the same time you can’t put the book down. 

This is truly a masterpiece and I can’t wait to get stuck in to the rest of Atwood’s extensive back catalogue. 

With that, this is the end of my Summer Reading challenge! In the end I managed to finish 10 out of 20. A further 3 I started and decided they weren’t for me. I’m actually really pleased with that. Maybe next year I’ll hit the full 20. Maybe one day I will read all the Bronte sisters. Today is not that day. This has been a brilliant way for me to really get back into reading, after a long stretch of not making the time I should for it. 

So as Autumn approaches I’m on the look out for another blogging challenge. It’s good fun to have a focus for the blog and get my head out of real life for a bit. If you have any suggestions comment below. 
Happy reading peeps. X

Posted in Friday Pick, Music

DAA Friday Pick: Jamie T

It’s a good day when I find out there’s a new Jamie T record for me to devour. This one is especially good. I heard the song and then looked up the video. Wowza. It’s certainly original. Be warned: there are images of a woman over the age of 40 enjoying and owning her sexuality. I know right…

Posted in Comedy, Edinburgh Fringe

DAA @ Edinburgh Fringe: Rhys James Forgives

There’s an over used tired expression that goes something like “You know you are getting older when [insert occupation here] look younger than you” Well in my case it’s not yet police officers or the Prime Minister but it is stand up comedians. 

Rhys James Forgives might be one of the first fringe stand up shows I’ve seen where the material wasn’t specifically aimed at me. 

James is very much a 90s kid. 25 years old and talking to millennials (of which I’m not entirely sure the meaning of but accept as a Thing too afraid to ask anyone to explain it to me). 

I’m barely 30 but I feel like I just made it under the wire when it comes to several factors that 90s and 00s kids are lumbered with. 

1. Such as being able to rent, definitely not buy, a half decent flat in a city rather than a rat infested damp cage. 

2. Being able to have experience of a childhood free of social media pressures. MySpace and Facebook only started fucking up my self confidence once I was 18 and at university. I barely handled it at that age so I genuinely worry for my young relatives. 

Lastly, if I had internet based communication access to Take That, the way One Direction fans do to their objects of desire today, I could not be held responsible for the filth I would have sent them. The passion was visceral. 

Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah. Rhys James. Yes. He is baby faced and young. But don’t let that fool you. He has a point of view and great jokes. 

In some ways there isn’t anything particularly groundbreaking about his comedy but then again I did sense that a new generation is ready to take over. It’s quite exciting and I’ll look forward to seeing what James does next. I’ve a feeling he’s only likely to get better with age. 

See Rhys James Forgives @ The Pleasance. For tickets, dates and times click here

Posted in Comedy, Edinburgh Fringe

DAA @ Edinburgh Fringe: Naomi Petersen – I’m telling you I’m not going 

Naomi Petersen lives in a theatre and has agoraphobia. She can’t go outside so you need to go to her. She’ll tell you how she ended up in this predicament through song, sketches and pizza. 

Petersen is delightful and funny in her performance. It will strike a chord with anyone who has battled anxiety on any level. I left with a smile on my face. 

Catch the show @ The Pleasance 15:30. For tickets and dates click here