Classic Dr Martens, military jacket and drainpipe jeans, this boy is an Irish fashion punk – transported from 1988 to 2012.
Monday, July 23, 2012
I think I’ll go out and embarrass myself by getting drunk and falling down in the street
You say I choose sadness, that it never once has chosen me.
I’m not sad but I am living a life of debauchery at the moment. By which I mean cider and Jaeger Bombs and crisps and breaking the rules: the diet rules, the friendship rules. About the only rules I am keeping at the moment is “Wait twenty minutes between texts when texting a boy” and “Don’t mention your bodily functions when trying to flirt with a boy.” (That last one will always be a challenge.)
I went to the disco last weekend. I never go to the disco. I can never justify spending €10 just to go into the downstairs of the Carraig and be overcharged for pints of cider. Then again, I never really had a tenner to spare and the idea of going to spot and possibly ensnare cute boys was one that was beyond the capabilities my carb-obsessed brain. But lately I’m finding that my ego needs a boost and where better to turn than to the Carrick Disco, filled with drunken boys at one in the morning, all hungry for a little extra self-esteem? It’s a perfect concoction of the drunken and desperate human psyche and at the moment, I love it.
In the disco last weekend, I was told a painful half-truth: “Emma, it’s been a long time since you’ve written anything happy.” Interesting. Is that true? I don’t know. I guess lately, I’m just being honest, rather than happy or sad. I don’t see a problem. And it’s very difficult to write happy, which is handy for me, and people get fed up of reading sad stories all the time. I like to be honest. Sometimes (in fact, most of the time) the honesty of my life involves low self-esteem, boys I struggle to talk to, and an inordinate amount of leg hair. That is my life and it is neither happy or sad. It just is.
Right now my life is sunburned and tired and excited for birthday parties and hanging out with friends I haven’t seen in months. It’s too much cider (it’s always too much cider) and it’s trying to be brave and it’s writing a lot. I have plans to go on a date with a nice boy and I have plans to see my wonderful friend Francis next weekend and go and get drunk at John’s 21st on Saturday and recover with crisps and Coke on Sunday.
Another half-truth: I don’t have feelings. I was caught out on that lie last weekend and it stunned me. “You do have feelings, Emma. Everyone knows it. Everyone reads your blog.” Oh, those old things? They’re not feelings! They’re just me thinking too much about nothing at all. I don’t have feelings. I’m invincible. Or so I keep telling myself. Soon after Christopher broke up with me a year and a half ago, I decided that feelings were lame and I didn’t want anything to do with them anymore. I don’t know if it’s true that I don’t have feelings, I just know that I’ve spent the last eighteen months convincing myself and everyone around me that I am stoical and stolid. But I guess that’s not true. I am the most dramatic person in the world. Somewhere there are feelings. I gloss over them but they’re there. Those feelings of jealousy, rejection, unworthiness. But they’re awful things to have or even be associated with so I don’t bother. Rotten things that are as far removed from my enveloped life as is possible. Of course, the Prozac helps.
This is the truth of the matter: I am building a wall of non-feelings to protect myself from those awful humans with raw emotions. Raw emotions are infectious. No, thank you. You keep your love and your pity and your compassion. I’ll be ruthless and selfish and honest. That’s enough right now. I’m sure the act will wear thin and translucent eventually but right now, it’s enough. It’s enough.
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
My lovely friend Shonagh and I combined intelligence and beauty and cunning and our clothes on eBay. (In other words, she offered to pay the insertion fees while I would promote the shop all over cyberspace.) You can buy cute dresses and jumpers and books for half nothing over at Shonagh’s eBay page. So do. You can also click into The Magic Position Shop and redirect to the items on eBay. Please purchase our clothes. They are pretty. And we are poor. Cheers. (Naturally, everything’s cute and girly and in fabulous condition. So treat yo’self.) x
Thursday, July 12, 2012
Maybe it’s unrequited love. Maybe it’s unrequited fancying. Maybe I’m an idiot or ugly or something. Maybe the people I fancy simply cannot and will not fancy me. Chuck Palahniuk told us that “The one you love and the one who loves you are never, ever the same person.” And maybe he was right. Or maybe I just fancy everyone and get upset when they don’t all fancy me in return.
I am sad and insecure tonight so I shall talk about my insecurities. Not smart enough, not funny enough, not normal enough. I’m hoping that some day a nice boy will find my insane and inane musings endearing. How do you tell someone that you have something in common with them without sounding like you’re lying? Maybe I just naturally sound insincere. It’s not often I click with a nice boy, and even rarer that that boy should give me butterflies. And when that does happen? When all the criteria is met and I like you, then what? I’ll try, in my own demented manner, to seduce you. Invariably, this will involve me talking about something ridiculously unsexy and uninviting like crisps and scurvy. Doesn’t anyone find that hilarious or endearing? I know what will happen. What will happen is that I will not attract bearded, intelligent boys. I will attract lunatics and boys with no personality. Oh God.
One boy doesn’t know I exist (why would he after our sixty second conversation and two seconds of eye contact?) and the other probably thinks I’m an idiot (and he would be correct). Oh God. I am definitely regressing. I am almost certainly fourteen. I’m pre-pubescent. Oh God. Oh God. Help. Next thing you know, I’ll start menstruating and discover lip gloss. Oh God.
One of my closest friends is an absolute guru when it comes to boys. She can flirt with more ease and confidence than with which I can breathe. Flirting is second nature to her and if she wants to kiss someone, there is no doubt in anyone’s mind that she will kiss that person. She is the only person I know who can decide to kiss someone and within minutes, achieve that goal. I’m the anti-guru. If I decide I want to kiss someone, it almost certainly will not happen, not unless I allow my standards to slip a notch or two. My guru friend needs no Dutch courage in her endeavour to kiss a (very lucky) boy, whereas I need at least a couple of pints and about a week’s worth of anecdotes to whip out (or, failing that, my boobs). I wrote before about my attempts to flirt with a boy in college. What I didn’t mention was that the whole thing ended in disaster, the details of which I won’t go into at this juncture. Ugh.
My other attempts at flirting have gone equally tragically. My friends still joke about when I was talking to (read: trying to flirt with) a boy on Facebook and we were on the subject of music. He said of Ed Sheeran, “He’s not my favourite.” With hardly a moment’s hesitation, I wrote, “I’m your favourite.” A bold statement by all accounts. (Actually, on this occasion, my “flirting” worked and ended with another notch on my proverbial bedpost. However, it also involved lots of ignoring me thereafter and so the accounts probably balanced really.)
Other times I have tried to flirt, I have invariably been revealed as a weirdo. I mention crisps, cheese, pubic hair and lots of other seemingly random subjects. Once, in the Students’ Union in college, I was with my friend, Francis, and a boy he knew (and for whom I had developed a soft spot – possibly in the brain) asked to borrow his laptop. Francis refused and I offered mine instead. The boy said no thanks, I don’t really know you, it might be inappropriate, to which I replied, in a barely concealed whisper, “We’ve touched in my dreams.” I was only half joking. See, that’s the problem: I try to be funny when I’m talking to boys but, in the wise and immortal words of Georgia Nicholson, “Boys don’t like girls for funniness.” Well then.
My same kissing guru friend suggested that the best way to attract a boy is to – as the cliché goes – be yourself. I replied to her advice with an incredulous “Have you met me?!” Be myself? If I carry on being myself for much longer, I am sure to begin to attract the mentally ill and the mentally deficient. (Wonderful people, I don’t doubt, but not my type.) Being myself involves trying to be funny when it is not at all appropriate. And generally my idea of funny isn’t the same as the rest of the world’s. Especially not good-looking boys. My friends think I’m funny but they don’t want to jump my bones or touch their tongues against my tongue (except Francis, but that’s different). My mother started laughing at my jokes recently, which I can only take as a bad sign.
I mentioned my boobs which are glorious in size if you’re into that kind of thing. Personally, I’m not. One of my gay friends groped me on a night out and told me that my boobs were wonderful and that “all the straight boys must love you!” Unfortunately not – at least, they’ve never mentioned being fond of my mammary glands. (Except for that notch on the bedpost boy who told me, in the throes of passion, that my boobs were “class.” A strange adjective for boobs but what do I know? I’m not from the west of Ireland.)
The point is I’m sort of funny and my boobs are “class” and in an ideal world, that would be enough to guarantee me a lifetime filled with good-looking boys with beards and unusual senses of humour (is that the plural? who knows?). Sadly, we do not live in an ideal world. We live in a world where boring people are in relationships and plain people are throwing their lips on everyone around them – and, more importantly, not being fought off by a reluctant receiver. Oh, to live like the normal people do!
I must be content with thinking up stupid things to say to other humans (such as “Rachel Allen is going in for Ireland in next year’s Eurovision” and “Fitzi scored the winning goal for Chelsea in that last match”) and reading Bridget Jones’ Diary and feeling that I can well and truly relate. (I might try reading something that requires a knowledge of literature next – you know, like the one my degree is supposed to provide – but for now, it’s all Nick Hornby and Helen Fielding and easy-to-read love stories. Because they do wonders for cheering up a loveless fool like me.)
For those of you unaware (or in need of a loving reminder), I’ve been writing for College Fashionista for the past couple of weeks, spotting well-dressed boys in the city and dissecting their outfits.
You can also look at some boards on Pinterest based on the outfits I write about.
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
Today I realised that I was wrong about you. I predicted that you’d always want a girl with a big personality, a girl who can stand up for herself. In truth, I wasn’t that person when we first met, but I became that person and it makes perfect sense to me now why there is no longer any chemistry between us. I am not who you want me to be and you are not who I want you to be. I thought I was the archetypical girlfriend for you but really, I just grew into this skin. I used to be sad and meek and insecure and that was what you wanted – for whatever reasons – and that’s what you want now. The quiet ones. The ones hiding in the background. I guess I was lucky back then but now I’m different. Or you’re different. No, you’re the same. Still full of cynicism. I used to always think this quote applied to us: “Beneath every cynic there lies a romantic, and probably an injured one.” That was us. I was the injured romantic. I’m not anymore. And you are more than welcome to your sad, weedy girlfriends. Meanwhile, I am more than content hanging out with my flaming homosexual friends. I think their energy suits me better than you ever did.
Or maybe I’m being too sentimental too late? Not that any of this matters. I mean, my mind just wanders and I draw conclusions five years later.
I’m not sure what my type of boy is. My friend Danny says that I am a sucker for a lost cause and that’s certainly true. Tortured soul? Mysterious? Problems with alcohol/drugs? Well, come on over! I’m very drawn to troubled boys, or boys who appear to be troubled. But the mystery! The mystery just kills me. I find nothing more intriguing and attractive than knowing absolutely nothing about a boy, seeing him around, occasionally hearing him speak. Tall dark stranger. Dark hair, a beard? Dressed like a homeless person? Oh God. I’m yours. (In fact, the last couple of boys I’ve fancied have all met this criteria.)
But how does one capture such a dishevelled boy? I’ve toyed with the idea of dressing in a more scruffy manner than I usually would, maybe wearing trousers too short. Or proffering some of my anti-depressants in welcome. Mi casa es tu casa. You know. Alas, I have yet to get my hands on a badly groomed young man. How sad.
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
If an ambulance or fire engine or Garda car sounds its siren while it passes our house, my mother says, “Someone’s in trouble.” If I’m in an okay mood I’ll say, “I know, it’s terrible.” But if, like today, I’m liable to be put in a foul humour by anything other than being left completely on my own, I will mutter under my breath, “I don’t care.” I am very selfish and sometimes I think that other people don’t exist so why should I care about their pretend catastrophes? Having said that, other times I am so overwhelmed by the thought of strangers in terrible situations that I feel sick with worry and my imagination runs riot and I think, “What if it was me? What if it was my family?” And then I distract myself with TV or a book or something. Because it does not do to dwell on morbid thoughts for too long.
I tend not to dwell on things anyway, unless they really are terrible. You know, like the horrible, stupid, borderline evil things I’ve done by accident or by fate or by my own stupidity. In those cases, I can’t help but think endlessly about who I’ve upset, and how, and how I’ve upset myself. Usually I talk to a friend and then I feel okay and my brain can move onto other things. For the most part though, I avoid thinking. (This is probably obvious to some of you who know me in real life and know how ditzy I can be.)
You know that that time of the night when you’re tucked up in bed and you’ve just turned off the light and you’re lying there and before you fall asleep, you think. For most people, this is a time designated to thinking. They reflect on today and they plan for tomorrow. I don’t. I don’t like reflecting because I invariably end up in a bad light from the day’s stories. I don’t plan because everything just feels like too much. So I don’t think. I turn on the TV and fall asleep to the noises of other people thinking and talking, or I read a book until my eyes get too heavy. God forbid it’s a thought-provoking book. If it is, I counteract it by then turning on the TV to some mindless drivel with bad pop culture references. This method works and I’m content enough to avoid thinking about the bigger issues in life. Except, of course, love, which I can never stop thinking about. Then again, I like thinking about love. I like trying to figure it out. I like thinking about it in a theoretical way but if true life examples happen to slip into my thoughts, I abandon the endeavour and try to think of stupid things to text to my friends such as, “A period is a monthly massacre of the womb.”
At the moment, the little room I have in my brain for thinking about The Big Picture is filled with thoughts of careers. Even then, when I think about that too much, I wonder to myself why I want a career. Money? For what? To buy clothes and wine and a camera and to sometimes go on holidays to cold parts of the world to drink more wine. (Am I seeming like an alcoholic in the making yet?) It all sounds very dull and pointless and I’m not sure I buy into it. But what else is there?
There was an ad on the radio last night that told me that we as people are “born to shop.” I let out a snort of derision and disgust. If there are less likely reasons as to why I was born, I can’t think of one. Certainly I was not born to shop. How boring. How bleak. Does it follow that people who don’t shop for the latest trends in fashion, gadgetry and other meaningless paraphernalia are wasting their lives? They are not doing what they were “born” to do. What a terrible thought. And I say that all this paraphernalia is meaningless and of course it isn’t. For example, I am very attached to my laptop, though I doubt the feelings are reciprocated, and I have a wardrobe full of clothes that I alternately like and loathe, but I am not defined by these possessions, and more and more I am realising that I am certainly not defined by how much I buy. In fact, lately, I’m spending so little money that I’m wondering if the makers behind that radio ad would think me a soulless demon. Maybe.
I think, in my naivety, that we were born to love. I know that sounds terribly clichéd and vomit-inducing but I really believe that. I tried to come up with some alternatives but I couldn’t settle on any of them. I toyed with “we are born to create” but it didn’t feel right. And I thought that what we all have in common is that we love someone. Nietzsche said, “True, we love life, not because we are used to living, but because we are used to loving.” (Actually, Nietzsche may not have said that – my bank of quotes is embarrassingly inaccurate.) I am used to loving. Slowly I’m learning that there are certain people I shouldn’t love either because they don’t deserve it or because it hurts me to love them, or whatever other reason. But I love people. I love my friends and my family (virtually) unconditionally. I know that they love me too and I think that if we had nothing else in common, we’d still have that.
I keep a diary now and, like all my diaries, it sounds as though it has been written by a grumpy fourteen year old. Which I am, I suppose – a grumpy fourteen year old trapped in the body of a grumpy twenty year old. Except I’m not that grumpy. I’m just bizarre. But my diary? My diary is pitiful. Because it’s handwritten, it doesn’t allow for the copying, pasting and deleting that goes on behind the blogging doors. Instead, it’s me correcting myself after every other sentence - “No, actually, that’s not right…” However, it’s nice to have paper and pen at hand for all those strange musings that I conjure up during an average day of selling strawberries. (These musings include, but are not limited to, who I’m currently in love with, my calorie intake, and how much money I expect to have saved by September. See what I mean about being fourteen all over again?)
The pages are covered in red strawberry juices and patches of brown mud and are wrinkled in places from the rainwater hitting them. I’ve called this diary “A Murderous Desire for Love” because I think it sounds wonderfully dramatic. Really it’s just because I was listening to The Smiths and I thought, “Oh, that sounds like a good title for a diary!” It contains such gems as “I feel personally responsible when people don’t buy strawberries or potatoes” and “Is it possible to be enthusiastic and cynical? Or enthusiastic in your cynicism? Or cynical in your enthusiasm? I’m enthusiastic and some people are cynical of that. And I’m cynical about everything else.” I am obviously a philosophical prodigy.
I’ve fallen in love. That’s not true. I’m fallen in lust. Or in infatuation. Or love at first sight, if there was such a thing. Except there’s not. And it was second or third sight, really. But basically there’s this boy who cycles past almost every day that I’m selling strawberries by the side of the road and I think he’s pretty cute. He has facial hair and his trousers are a bit too short and I find it endearing. Do you have facial hair and a tortured soul? Apply now to be my boyfriend! Will require some kissing and moderate to high consumption of cider in fields. Great benefits (i.e. I’ve started shaving my underarms again).
In other news, I’ve started planning my 21st birthday party. I’ve already bought 100 heart shaped pink balloons off Ebay but I feel I may have overestimated the size of the venue. I think I’d be lucky to fit 20 heart shaped helium balloons in the upstairs of my local. But no matter! I’m also bidding on some cute bunting and saving up to buy some cocktail sausages to feed my guests. In fact, all the money I’ve earned so far has gone towards my birthday fund and I’ve spent little outside of buying credit for my phone. I haven’t had cider in so long that I fear I shall be rendered comatose after one pint on the night of my birthday. (Which would be hilarious.) But it will be nice to celebrate and to know that I’ve sponsored the night all by myself.
Am I an adult yet? It certainly feels like it. I’m waking up early and going to bed early and making sensible choices about my eating and my spending and my behaviour in general, which certainly makes a change. On the other hand, my skin has erupted into a cesspool of spots and blackheads so part of me thinks that I still might be a teenager in some respects. Hmm. Fourteen, obviously.
(Other things I’ve scribbled in my diary: “I seek approval but I’m not against notoriety. In fact, if it wasn’t for notoriety, my name might never be mentioned.”)