2017 Taught Me Some Things

I’m writing this home alone on New Year’s Eve, post-bath with gin, because I’m fucking hungover (happy birthday Kate!) but also because I liked the idea of some quiet brain time.

This year has been good to me. I had a lot of fun with some heart-warmingly brilliant people, and spent the summer skating around/ putting in serious grind with a bunch of reprobates I’m stoked to call friends.

The pace of this year has been erratic as hell. Some things rushed at me out of nowhere and turned out to be the best things that could have happened. Others hovered uncomfortably in the background and continue to linger, waiting for me to make my peace with them.

This was the year I FINALLY graduated, and there were times I wondered if I would, with a first-class degree, and my university awarded me a prize for best dissertation on an African topic. Incredulity is an understatement but I’m begrudgingly allowing myself a little pride in this (amid convulsions of irreconcilable self-deprecation).

This year it hit home that places will always be there (despite what certain delusional tangerine-hued demagogues might think #BearsEars), but people won’t. I fought my impulse to wander and delayed travel plans, because my family needed an extra pair of hands at home and because Canada isn’t going anywhere.

[SPOILER I’m moving to Canada this year.]

This year I learned the value of time well spent, and the crime of time wasted. I tried to use my time as well as I could and I’ll try to do better with it from here on out.

I opened up about some things and buried others deeper where quite frankly they can stay for now.

I met new people, made some plans, and broke my arm on my skateboard because you know what you just can’t win ‘em all.

This year I’ll try to remember what the last one taught me, and do better for as many people as I can. And, learn to drive/ write more often/ shake my culinary prowess into a semblance of respectability/ try not to do this thing where I immerse myself in anxiety-inducing head-sinkingly negative thoughts because WHO needs that.

 

Happy 2018 home slices, may your intentions be good and your time not wasted.

Lo x

Some Things That Make Me A Person

Following on from my previous post in the vein of introductions/ hello this is me, I’m here *waves*:

In-keeping with the age of chronic over-sharing in which we  live, I thought it fair to shed light on some of the quirks and convictions that sum me up as a writer and human, as these will largely inform the writing that here appears. And so as they fell from the jumble of my brain, a list of some things which make up the person behind these thoughts can be found below:

I am an aspiring (failing) early-riser, seasoned gin-drinker, and communications specialist/ freelance writer maintaining a loose hold on most of my marbles.

I am a literature graduate who chose to study Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie instead of Great Expectations.

I (will try to) write with conviction, I read, I collect pins bearing witty pop culture references/ overtly political statements, and I travel a lot. (pins in the above photo obtained mostly via the wonderfully kooky Kate Gabrielle.)

Names commonly associated with myself include Lo, Pop, Lolobrain, and Mancane. (Spoken: man-kaa-ne with a Zulu click. Informal translation: ‘small one’).

My addiction to change consistently uproots me, and my constant uprootings help to ground me. I am aware of how contradictory this logic first appears.

I microwaved my Barbies into a seething molten grave when I was five.

I fiercely advocate for justice and equality in all things, and believe in making constructive noise on these issues where possible and/ or necessary. Do this if you can. It’s important.

I am northern in soul and Manchester will always be my home. Other places I have called home include South Africa, Canada, the Netherlands and too many tents and temporary structures to count.

I love digging into offbeat topics I know nothing about and will enter into discussion with anyone about pretty much anything.

I naturally gravitate towards mountains and books, and the sense of calming insignificance I’m imbued with when immersed in either or both of these things is my favourite refuge.

PSA in case it wasn’t already abundantly clear: publishing my writing on the internet scares the hell out of me.

I sometimes enjoy indulging in overly complex and complicated sentences. The wordy webs woven in the stories of F. Scott Fitzgerald fascinate me, and whilst never assuming to compare myself to this troubled and talented literary enigma, sometimes there are just too many brilliant words that cannot be sacrificed, points that cannot go unmade, sentiments that cannot go unexpressed – and so to hell with simple sentences.

I am a feminist, who is tired of the raised eyebrows and sidelong glances that follow this identification all too often. I hope these knee-jerk reactions will soon become less frequent. The political, social and economic equality of the sexes is not something any rational person should fear. IT’S IMPORTANT.

I am forcibly learning to overcome my vitriolic hatred for unobscured photographs of my face. Until then, catch me hiding behind puppies, book covers, coffee cups and other people.

I value compassion and independence above most things, and actively seek out people(s) that do likewise.

Other loves include understated affection, chronically oversized jumpers and mozzarella pizza.

As a person so far incapable of doing so, the concept of settling, in both geographic and emotional terms, fascinates me.

I have decided not to limit myself and write ad-hoc about any and all of the above (jumpers and all – riveting), and hope to wade into a host of other disconnected subjects for good measure.

With this profession of quirks and confessions I welcome you to this, my small small corner of The Internet.

I hope to write often and learn a lot. I would love you to read along whenever the mood strikes you, and invite you to laugh, object, commiserate, and reach out with your experiences of so many of the things about which I know nothing. There are no thoughts, comments, questions, qualms, queries, or cries of anguish that I do not want to hear.

Learning is the goal here.

Lo x