Back for Good

The loss of Popchips Corn Chips was akin to the loss of a much loved jumper or a favourite pair of leggings. Somewhere between Lockdown Start 2020 and Christmas, someone in Popchips HQ clearly looked at what sold and discovered this snack was not it. The company decided to throw their lot simply into making air-fried potato chips instead, which are poor imitations of this snack’s clear superiority. I even asked them on Social media, right out, what had happened and they were honest. No more corn, just potato.

I was gutted, not gonna lie.

Then, I discovered somewhere that was still selling them…

I’ve tried a number of substitutes for this snack, and I had settled on an alternative, though it must be said that Snack a Jacks are really inferior pretenders, but sometimes you just have to accept that your favourite thing is no more. Except, if there is one box of 36 bags out there that costs me less than a pack of cigarettes? There will be others, and if they don’t expire until November 2021? OH YOU BET MY SIZEABLE ARSE I will be tracking them down and putting them into storage. There’s not much in this world I love, after all. This is pretty high up the list.

There will be further investigation into what’s out there, and I will be buying them, OH YES…

Stop

No, really, it is. Not sure how long this will last, but the idea is to make the most of it.

When I suggested this last week, some lovely and well-meaning people attempted to steer me away. I appreciate the thought, really do, but I’m a big girl now and sometimes principle beats everything else. Those people who are tired of the same arguments are allowed to be so without redress. I am tired of the same fucking excuses that social media gives to forgive bad behaviour. It needs to stop. People can’t keep shitting where they sleep. Well, they can, but we’re all gonna die if they do.

Lot going on this weekend. Can’t wait.

Respect

‘Run’ is a broad term. My times will tell a seasoned runner that, a lot of the time, this is a pseudo jog, or a very fast-paced walk. They know what their splits are, where weaknesses lie. I’m here, right now, trying to breathe from my diaphragm and not pass out. This is about betterment and empowerment in ten second improvements. However, in the next week we’re gonna open the throttle a bit and see what we can do.

My best 5km is 46:27. I reckon 30 seconds off that’s doable on this new course I have organized for myself. So, the first part of this is a sub 46 minute result. The second set is endurance and practising active recovery over distance. That means seeing if 15km is doable tomorrow. It should be, with a route pre-planned. Gonna be the warmest day of the year so far as well, so…

Only one way to find out.

Wondrous Stories

Feedback is the best thing in the world. Even the bad stuff is good, you know. It means someone is reading your work. That’s the key, it’s why word of mouth on The Socials is so important. When you get trolled, and we all do, it’s still a good thing because, like it or not, you have distracted someone enough from their own lives to come and interact with yours and THIS is the Elixir of Life. You don’t need gold-plated toilets and armed militia at your disposal. All that shit the Ex_President pulled, deep down, was because he never got enough love as a kid.

Don’t @ me either. You either get it, or you don’t.

The great thing about the unprompted comment above however is the choices that have now been validated as a result of it. 2021 was all about making things easier to do. That means that the first few months of short stories are interconnected and, if I go this as a positive sign in January? It’s time to build on momentum and NOT BLOW IT. The key there, of course, is those three words. I have a sensible, compelling human storyline, Twitter Polls and some online elements to weave into the mix. Hopefully, it’ll get more people interested…

All you can do is your best, when all is said and done. This, fortunately for me right now, is just that.

Fear

Have decided to do what I said I wasn’t going to do and publish myself on video to YouTube. It’s another tiny step outside the comfort zone [TM] and as I already know the worst that could happen, there’s very little left to lose. I’ve not had a new Patreon sign-up for months, so stuff needs to change. If I get one new person as a sub, it was worth it. That’s the tiny benchmark that needs to be attained. One new Patreon Sub.

It worries me that those surrounding me have little interest in what I do. It makes me wonder why they follow in the first place. When you ask, the answers are always wrapped around how interesting I am or thought-provoking, yet that is not enough to make them take part. There is the very real understanding, of course, that I have chased true fans away in the past, because that level of devotion I found worrying, and in some cases actually frightening. Finding a balance is a tough ask.

This is as much about me as it is them.

Comfort zones are hard things to break free of. If life’s good enough, especially in the current climate, why on earth would you want to in the first place? There’s enough fear and loathing in place without intentionally manufacturing any more… but to grow, this is the task. It’s why today 10km outside needs to happen for no other reason than sometimes, the only way things improve is when they hurt. I know this will be painful and difficult and that would once have been enough to prevent any forward motion. Now, it just has to be done.

Also, there could really be better trainers at some point, so yeah, being rich and famous won’t happen without showing my face in this world that is utterly obsessed with looks over stats. Sometimes I wish I was better at things that get you better noticed too. Being as susceptible to jealousy and social avarice as the next human being… all of this is part of the exam syllabus. How you cope, and how you react. Getting five people to follow the YouTube Channel yesterday was the most excitement I’ve had virtually for days.

Fear must be overcome for us to proceed.

Hey Ya

Yesterday, I made three videos in one day. Once upon a time, it took me a week to do that just once. Of course, it helps that it’s just me that needs to be edited, and there’s no extra elements at play. However, we’ve entered a new realm after the chaos of Christmas, and there’s a desire to keep the momentum going for as long as is conceivably possible. In the middle of all this, it undoubtedly helps that there is nothing else to do that focus on working: no School Run, nor any real stress from my family.

I also made it outside to exercise. There was shopping done, though the reality in my supermarket of choice is that Brexit is having more of an effect on supplies than anyone is really letting on. After writing this, I’ll pull a yoga mat out and see if I can’t do an hour or so, because there’s undoubtedly some benefit in having a decent stretch once a week. Then, it’s just more of the same for as long as I can, because there is this feeling that if I do stop, everything will just summarily disintegrate around me. A niggle with my left inner ear is a case in point… it’s better now I’m awake and upright. Let’s see how changes in balance affect it, shall we?

No, I’m absolutely sure I won’t crumble, but just in case…

The disturbing thing about this email that I was sent was, undoubtedly, that its title was indeed an old Facebook password. This tells me all I need to know about how safe (or otherwise) the platform was back in 2009 and that I’m really very grateful I have nothing anywhere, any more, that is of any interest at all to Zuckerberg. The next job on my list of Tech Related Gubbins is to delete WhatsApp once and for all off my phone. After that, people will just have to text me. I’m sure we’ll all cope just fine.

The more I go off grid and force people to have to interact on my terms, the happier I become.

Patience

For the longest time, all I have ever done is move my life around. The same shit, identical groups of things, rearranged from place to place without a goal. Two days ago, all that changed. Some would have waited for a new year in order to triumph this as some glorious, orchestrated start, but I’m tired of that bollocks, so very annoyed and angry at anyone who uses their existence as a lifestyle brand or the means by which people care about their social media. So, I threw things away, in some cases for the first time since my teens.

Nobody expects you to be a living history. In many cases, the weight of that baggage crushes your soul to a point where it is difficult to discern a consistent identity. Only through the process of poetry, over the past three years, has this fact become clear to a brain that was increasingly distracted by other people’s idea of what was good for me. Coming out of my husband and son’s Covid infections, it is clear how we create versions of reality with which to assuage terrors that are often never really confronted. In my case, 2021 will be where a combination of philosophy and dance music sets me free.

It is time to properly put certain timelines to rest.

I am, undoubtedly, in the best shape of my life. The resilience worked for will remain in place. There will be a return to places lost and forgotten, due to fear and disbelief. There needs to be a reinvention that isn’t because it looks good or someone else decided that was a ‘good’ idea. The only books read this year should be those that challenge my mindset… whilst creatively, everything is in flux. Blogging remains a consistently decent means by which the World is rationalised and summarily understood, so we’ll shove our face to the words for a bit and see where everything goes.

Then, when this is done, I’ll get on a static bike and then lift some weights.

There is no need to change that which already grants me strength.

Celebration

Birthday was smashing: same people forget every year, I tell them it matters a lot, they promise to be better and so on. I’ve been dreadful with birthdays this year however, so I’m gonna get proper reminders this time. That’s part of the upcoming plan. Then, when people still forget, I can ask myself if there are other reasons because making the effort is not hard.

This week there are submissions, poetry and newsletters to finalise. Half-term could not have come at a better time, frankly.

I’ll be here when I can.