Showing Out (Get Fresh at the Weekend)

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Sure Signs I am Run Down include acne breakouts, general aches and pains, increased sensitivity and the total inability to take a joke. This was me, yesterday, and that’s why going to bed at 10pm was the answer. It became abundantly clear I’d left the room when I sat through an hour of Ocean’s 8 which neither empowered me or left brain with a sense of being somehow enriched by a movie where women were the leads. If the script blows, you could cast shop mannequins and get the exact same result, which would have been more entertaining, to be honest.

Hollywood has a lot to learn about how the real world works.

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Talking of which, it is Oscars night, and never has there been less interest in what America thinks is a good movie or not than there is now. Once upon a time I’d have genuinely cared about the outcomes, but now the relevance of such institutions is fraught at best. In a world where criticism has been weaponised, it is no longer wise or indeed sensible to cherish opinions in public. Down this path only anger and sock puppets lie.

It’s why there’s a sad inward breath whenever someone on Social media decides to do the 1 like = 1 fact about me meme. It’s like covering yourself in feathers during Duck Shooting season and standing where all the hunters can see you. Someone will undoubtedly mistake poor disguise as prey, even though you resemble nothing of the sort. Having a point of view has never been so dangerous or destructive. Some days the only safe course of action appears to be selling other people and not you.

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For me, however, this is the moment to stand up and be myself, properly, for the first time in a decade. Undoubtedly part of the modern-day survival gear for any erstwhile blogger is a thick skin, plus the desire to find a hill to die on where as many personal principles as possible can be conveniently located. Don’t need adverts, don’t want a partner or a ‘collaborative opportunity’ as one potential advertiser tried to lead with recently.

Following me on Instagram because my hair looks good might work for some brands, but really I can see right through you. I only really believe friends who tell me I’m beautiful, but to everybody else there’s now proper understanding of politeness and acceptance. I can enjoy your opinion, whilst respecting it, yet still not ascribe to it. This might come as a surprise to some of you, but I’m only now beginning to grasp some of the finer nuances of communication. It has been a very long time in the dark.

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Some days, there’ll be editing of posts if there’s a desire to do so, pulling out an excess of personal pronouns, but today is most definitely an ‘I’ day: waiting for a Sunday delivery then it’s a walk to the Gym, where I have permission to muck about for an extended period before having to be home for domestic duties. There’s stuff that should be done but it is far more likely that Sunday becomes a planning day. Short stories, poetry, proposals… and the list goes on.

Hollywood seems to think that aspiration for women like me is female superheroes and women in remakes of all male movies. This is not my idea of progress or enlightenment, although to dismiss them is dangerous, for other women are not driven as I am. Aspiration for me is respect, debate, understanding and the chance to bring difference to a world which, at least from here, appears worryingly conventional. I get that I’m not reinventing the wheel, but this wagon has merit.

I just gotta make sure the wheels don’t fall off when it matters.