Thursday, 25 February 2016

Internet nasties.

There is a plethora of 'evil' that one can encounter on the internet. Classic examples include vigilante groups, websites vindictively trying to disable feminism and your standard troll. All nasty, all upsetting, all big wastes of time. Sometimes we feel that it's worth it to react against these unfortunate little pockets of hate, but when is it sensible to ignore everything or "fight back"?

JK Rowling is a good example of someone using their online status to trample on vermin. She picks them up and says "ugh look! Gross!", and we look and it's gross and the vermin loses its small influence. Sure, it may not always be worth it but if anyone was going to stand up to online nasties I'd take a leaf from her book.

What Rowling is able to do, which many of us aren't, is seem like the bigger person even when she's not responded completely indifferently because she has real influence. But it doesn't mean occasionally we can't do the same. One comment that pokes fun at someone's mean comment can be enough to weaken its effect. And there should only be one comment. More than that and it's an argument, and you won't be able to win anything against the mindlessness of trolling.

It's hard to know when to look away from something when it angers you. I stumbled across a website the other day that was so full of offensive slurs I couldn't tell if it was trying to be satire or just tripe, either way it wasn't clever enough or stupid enough to be funny. It made me quite upset. And annoyed. And frustrated. I wanted to do something about it, I couldn't find any information to tell me it was just a bad joke, but there was nothing that would work. I was just going to have to be sorry that I'd seen it and put it away from my mind. One thing that did soothe me was that there were no comments under the articles, which I'm hoping meant it was extremely unpopular. I don't know if it was or not, I'm not going to give it publicity here.

This is a great example of the internet bilge you shouldn't react to. It doesn't deserve any traffic, good or bad, so don't say anything and try not to click on a link for it again. It really, really isn't worth it. The best case scenario is that no one ever looks at it and the site is given up on, but ignoring it is good enough.

You can bump into horrors on the internet in the same way you can bump into weirdos in the street, but with the internet you actually have a greater opportunity to filter it all out. You can just ignore what goes on on here, you can choose what you do and don't see. You can work out who's sharing nasty stuff onto your timeline and clean it up and move on.

It hurts to see bad things online. I get angry about stuff a lot. But I have to get better at switching it off when I need to, because it is rarely worth any of our time.

Thursday, 18 February 2016


I simply cannot decide how to spend my hours. 

I want to fill them with something good. I seem to want to add things to each hour like proportions in a recipe to make a good day, only, I don't know what makes a good day. Each hour seems a little wasted. And they either slog on or slip by and I haven't digested it properly. I want time to speed up and slow down. I want time to be used properly. I don't know how to properly use time. I think of it like currency, and I'm trying to save up for a rich life, but I'm just spending it willynilly. Why don't I know how to spend my time? 

I want to always be "productive". Whatever that means. Productive for my mind, my body, my overall experience. Just sitting and thinking isn't productive. I have to be doing something. And not just watching TV. 

I worry that I spend my time busily in order to have days that I allow myself to do nothing. I want to deserve not doing anything. I worry that this makes me not take in the doing something properly, that I rush over it to get to the relaxing part. I comfort myself by thinking I can be at home soon, get into bed and watch a film. That's not time well spent, is it? 

Really I think I need myself to shut up when it comes to time. Just stop thinking about it. Let it pass, don't watch it happen. I worry about time all the time. This must make the days go faster. I hate how time just goes. But I should just close my eyes. I should just read my books, and do my writing, and watch my films and carry on. And time will move around me. And I won't care about time. 

Saturday, 6 February 2016

Exploring the idea of humanity at 18.25 years old.

Often I think, at 18.25 years old, that I have worked everything out. Arrogant, I know, but what else is there to be? I feel as if I have gone through the whole spectrum of emotions and I am waiting now for it to go on repeat. I am in a sort of limbo in my last year at school, stuck on boredom and stress. But I have had a glimpse at the extreme in this small section of my life and I fear that the rest of it will no longer be much of a surprise. Is this it? Sometimes feeling very sad, sometimes very happy and then long stretches of very little in between?

My dear rabbit died when I was 12, I have felt what grief feels like and I know that that grief will one day increase tenfold. I have been really, really riled up about the world we live in, but I feel a little tired, because there is always something wrong. I have experienced mental illness. I have been so angry, so enraged that I scream and cry and feel absent from my own body. I have believed in something so powerfully, so completely and then had that belief slowly crumble away into an absence of something that used to be strong. I have had love and heartbreak. I have cried so hard that I couldn't breath, or felt that I would never be able to stop crying. I have laughed so much that I crunched my stomach muscles until they ached. I have had friends I would steal the moon for, and loved them like sisters. I have cried and laughed with them, held their hands, kissed their cheeks. I have grown up in a family so passionate, so mad, so quick-tempered and so full of unconditional love that sometimes it has felt entire lifetimes unfold in single evenings in this house. I have travelled some of the world with these people, seen sunsets in places that are not my own. I have been at least four different people so far in my life and I am well acquainted with change so what possibly could there be that is waiting for me in the indefinite rest of my existence?

Almost absolutely everything. I do not know humanity at all. I have not felt all of its evils, its graces, its quirks. I have not even come close. I have gently dipped my toe in the water thus far, maybe my entire foot is in now, but I am yet to immerse myself completely. That happens when time passes, and fortunately that happens all the time. I am only just becoming familiar with the destruction people can create, the torture, the greed that they can feel, the conscious ability to cause another person pain. I do not understand that yet, but I know I will continue to see more of it. I do not have any idea of what love is. Only a small picture of it, I am waiting for it to explain itself to me. I do not know what death is. I am still trying to convince myself it is okay to never know. I am still pretending it will never happen to me or anyone around me. Death is something that happens to other people. Humanity is what is happening to me.

I know nothing. Right now, at 18.25 years old, the world is a complete mystery. I am arrogant to think that there is not much left. There is everything left. I have not worked anything out. I am exploring humanity, but I will never know it all.