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So my friend came knocking on my door at 1am last night, frightened out of her wits and asking if she could stay the night because she’d made the terrible error of speaking with her male neighbour and trusting him not to try and sexually assault her when he was in her house. Even as she cried and threatened to call the police if he didn’t leave, he demanded to know why she’d invited him into her house in the first place, as if he’s some fucking vampire and she was in a horror novel.

Of course, because someone was hammering on my own door at 1am last night, I had first tried to hush my barking dog because I was initially afraid someone had come to hurt me.

I had to sit up with her and calm her down and explain, again and again, that it wasn’t her fault, she doesn’t owe him anything and that I won’t hold with victim-blaming. It breaks my heart that a well-educated psychologist still was shocked that she wasn’t being automatically blamed for what had happened.

When you men’s rights clowns rant about feminism going ‘too far’ and how we privileged western women need to shut the fuck up because we’re equal now and things are fine, please come visit me so I can punch you in the fucking face.

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It's nearly 4pm and I still need to wash my clothes, take the dog for a long walk, eat, clean out the freezer, vacuum and tidy my bedroom.

I've spent the day writing drabbles at VC Media and a YA short story for tomorrow's Cimmerian Tales blog.


Well, maybe on the getting nagged by an impatient collie part.

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Everything's been so, so busy lately that I haven't had time to do anything on the internets (not having a connection at home at the moment probably doesn't help). It also means that I've neglected Awesome Community (if I do say so)

[community profile] vc_media , but that'll change from Monday when I'm back online properly. 

So first there was Thassos in May, and that was lovely and Greek and I'd totally go there again. Then there was work being crazy and changing roles and all that business.


Then there was California:


 I need to write a full report on that but there was San Francisco and Alcatraz and the Golden Gate and Santa Cruz and Monterrey and Santa Barbara and Los Angeles and the Rock of Ages premiere (okay, standing there squinting at Zac Efron) and Paramount Studios and the Community set (okay, so the set was closed up, but we saw the library ~woo) and San Diego and Seaworld and Tijuana and Bakersfield and Paso Robles and all that palaver. It was amazeballs. And completely exhausting.

The day I returned from America, I had to travel down to Bristol - I literally had to struggle not to vomit, I was that exhausted (who vomits when tired, ffs?) spent 15 hours in a sleep coma and then travelled down south to pick up this little monster for my parents:


Then Ellie the Collie and I moved into a house in Liverpool that weekend, which required moving a lot of stuff around and haplessly getting my mum to fix it up for me because I have no creative skills when it comes to home decor and getting the phone line switched on and begging the water company to count me as a real person and not cut the supply off and boring things like shopping for fucking dustpans and bin liners.


Pretty much how I feel right now.

So this is my life now. I'm domestic, y'all. A little over two weeks ago I was all screaming my head off on a rollercoaster in Santa Cruz and today I'm wondering how to paint my spare bedroom.

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As I mentioned in an earlier post, I'm taking part in a writing group where we post up to 1,500 on a prompt chosen by one of the three writers. The genre is YA, and we're terrible and embrace The Dark Stuff.

It's just a bit of fun and given my alarming propensity to writing only when given a strict deadline (not one essay in university wasn't written the night before), it's a good way to try and tighten writing and editing skills, and learn my ~original fiction voice.

I can't promise you a great read. I'm not so sure of myself when writing original stuff than fanfic, and sometimes one prompt will speak to me more than another. But if you care to read or just like to point and laugh at me literally writing a story within an hour and weeping profusely with panic as I do it, here's the link to this week's story: The Descent.

My co-writers are talented, measured and people whom I hope will Teach Me Things. So you know, I recommend them.
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[personal profile] versailles_rose pointed out that there's been a dearth of pics of Ellie not covered with a blanket. Haha.

So. Let me spam you with some Ellie pics. And introduce you (or help you recognise) some very border collie behaviour.

Puppy spam!  )
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It renders everyday things interesting and a little strange.

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I like to walk the dog of a night, when the village is all quiet and nice. But I’m getting too scared to walk by the school. There’s a dog nearby that howls like the werewolf in An American Werewolf in London. I’m not kidding. It makes my blood run cold every time I hear it.

BRB running home.
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Ellie should really have been called Linus - when she's tired or feeling a little too collieish and naughty, she will carry a blanket around in her teeth and suck on it like a baby. I'm not sure where she learned this habit, but it's apparently pretty harmless and some dogs will do it all their lives.

I bought her this little doggy blanket because really, she's too small to be carrying around the blanket from her dog bed right now.

Photo a day

Apr. 5th, 2012 09:51 pm
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I love all these photos people are posting from their daily lives, so I'm nicking the idea from [personal profile] torachan and doing my own. I have some random photos I've taken over the last couple of weeks, so I may cheat a little and use them when I don't have a good photo of the day.

Like this one, for example:

Liverpool skyline at night.

Oh, things

Jan. 14th, 2012 03:16 pm
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I realised I hadn't written on my journal since Christmas, so have to rectify that. I wanted to tell you more about Amy, and my thoughts on everything, but I realised that I'm not quite ready yet. I started writing about her last night for an entry and the tears just wouldn't stop, so I guess I need to give it a bit more time.

I can't believe how hard her death has hit me. I feel like I'm dealing with it well, and then a black cloud descends or someone says something that reminds me of her, or I'm at work doing something and accidentally start singing a song (I'm terrible for doing this: replacing words to a song with someone else's name or a story and I did it with Amy most) and hurt myself. I've had to sit there a few times, trying to pull myself together or hastily wiping the tears away before a colleague sees.

Honestly, I really hate public scenes. And yes, I realise this is ironic when I'm sharing my ~feelings in a public journal.

I'm starting to get upset again writing this, so I'll leave it at that for now. I'm okay, I promise you all. I just need time. It heals everything.

We got a puppy for my dad, a pure border collie (Amy was part golden retriever and I suspect that was why she had some problems with her heart. Or maybe it was just age. Huh.) and she's a horror, a terror. We called her Ellie, from Eleni/Eleanor. Etymology points to light, healing. And it's what we need: some light, some healing. (Amy, by the way, means 'beloved' <3).

It's been hard, because Amy was an excellent dog for my dad. She made sure he got up of a morning - every day, nagging him for a walk -- and gave him so much love. He wouldn't get up until afternoon after she died and, along with our other dog, he wouldn't eat properly. When we brought Ellie into the house, he picked her up, hugged her, and smiled for the first time since Christmas Eve.

I feel horrible about it because no matter how much I rationalise it, replacing Amy feels like a betrayal. It's absurd: nothing could ever, ever replace her. I fear that I have a barrier with Ellie and can't love her so deeply because of it. But again, time will heal this. We did it to keep my dad going; it's the important thing.

Things that don't keep one going are stuff like being involved in a severe car crash. In a brand new car. Yep! My mother phoned me on Monday and begged me to come home quickly - some clown in a 4x4 overtook a van on the other side of the road by diving into the left lane. Where my parents were driving. Our car's a write-off, my dad has three broken ribs and a punctured lung, and my mum fractured her wrist. Oh, oh! And my dad was due to have a tumour cut out of his oesophagus on Tuesday, and now the appointment has been set back because they can't operate on someone with a punctured lung. Whoop!


My BFF Hannah said I need to think positive and look to the light. Ellie, you've got a lot of responsibility on your fluffy puppy shoulders. And hey, at least there'll be personal injury compensation to help them? Yeah? Bueller? :D
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We had to have Amy put down today. She deteriorated rapidly overnight and we had to weigh up whether we were keeping her alive for ourselves and Christmas, or whether she had any chance of recovery.

The vet said she had something blocking her heart, perhaps fluid, perhaps a tumour. She just looked so exhausted, so ready to give in, that we had to make the decision. She died with my mum stroking her face, my brother and father petting her, while I stood in the corner and cried like an idiot. I couldn't face seeing her dead, so had to leave.

My last image is of her looking so tired, her head held up by my mother, struggling to breathe. She didn't cry out when they put the needle in, just whimpered a little. I remember the vet saying her breathing would grow heavier, that they should lay her down. God, I'm such a coward, not being able to turn around, to say goodbye.

I loved her so much I can't even tell you. She was my brave, feisty dog, my irritating little bear, my companion since I was 17.

I loved you so much, Amy. I will never, ever forget you.

I can't stop crying.
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I have always loved LJ and stuck with it through so very, very many bad things.

A lot of people I love and respect left after the deletion idiocy a couple of years ago, but still I clung on.

They gradually stripped functionality down. The rich text editor was overhauled to improve features -- by making it ridiculously hard to post anything without the images or text being skewed.

Then, this. I'm going to rant about the whole [personal profile] igrick idiocy later, but... God, it's great to be on a site with clean, familiar aesthetics and no sneering clown developer labelling every non-Russian as an American mouse complaining about nothing.

Vive Dreamwidth!
rebness: (Rope: Now just a minute mista)

Livejournal has just derped itself out of my bank balance forever.

I'm moving my personal account across to Dreamwidth tonight. I'll crosspost to LJ from there.

If any of you have accounts over at DW, please let me know so I can add you. <3

rebness: (Angel)
What a day. I woke up late and had to get a taxi into work. Ouch. The server went down in the office for the third day running, so I didn't get much done. My dad's in hospital because he's having trouble swallowing (we don't know why yet, so no point in being emo about it). I had to get a taxi from work, so called a private hire cab and went downstairs to meet the car. I got soaked in this sudden... monsoon that left me drenched in seconds, in howling winds, and the stupid cab didn't turn up. I hailed a hackney and had to pay an arm and a leg to get to hospital. The private hire cab rang twenty-five minutes after they said they'd be there in a minute. Fuck you, Delta cars. Never, ever using you again.

[burnt too many times.]

So, it took me hours to feel warm and human again and I'm sitting here scrolling through the news when I come across this video. It's made by a charity who rescued 72 beagles from a laboratory that was being shut down in Spain. They would've been destroyed otherwise. Instead, here they are, seeing sunlight and putting their paws on the grass for the first time ever in their lives:

It's a lovely video with a very happy ending, but I cannot stop crying. It puts my own stupid troubles into perspective. ;_;
rebness: (Russia: Moskva Snow)
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rebness: (Velvet Goldmine: Mwah)
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Give some to the family, buy a house (or at least, put away enough rent for the rest of my life because rent is a pain in the arse) and then blow the rest on travel.

First stop: Australia, to join my friend Katherine picking strawberries or whatever she's doing. I wouldn't do the picking part, though. I'd just sit in the sun with a cold beer and offer her beers whilst she rolled her eyes and said I wasn't seeing the real Australia.
rebness: (BB: Cheeky)
I keep meaning to post and then thinking, 'but what do you even have to say that's important?' And the ball of apathy rolls on and on. Idiot girl.

Hey, so I'm still planning this US thing next year. Why is the country so big? The places I Really Want to See are at the four corners of the US (and then one riggggggght up there, next to Canada - like that's going to happen!) and I have to try and work out a good schedule for that for a time frame of two weeks and a couple of days. I might have to ask you all for guidance or something.

I've been cooking a lot with butternut squash lately. I tend to prefer it to pumpkin, especially for soup. I'm kind of glad that my tastebuds are craving butternut squash soup with chilli in these dark, cold nights instead of chips or something. And now I have this lovely monkfish to cook, and every recipe I know for it is summery and light. I need something hearty, but the BBC and Jamie Oliver and all my favourites aren't inspiring me. Something with root vegetables? I dunno. Hmm.

How are you, my lovelies? What are you up to? :D
rebness: (IT Crowd: Moss)

I've been fawning over Ben Goldacre of late. He's the British scientist who forced Gillian McKeith to stop calling herself Dr. as it was false. He's the one who has taken on homeopathy and big pharma and I adore him. He constantly presses the reader -- look at the study, read it properly. Are the people presenting you with 'facts' full of bias?

This fucking woman. She drives me up the wall, and not merely for splintering my dearest fandom, not merely for dragging canon over the coals of crap. She comes out with the most stupid, simplistic shit that I get so angry. There was the time someone asked her why she came out with anti-abortion rhetoric in one of her later novels when she's all for womens' rights and she was all, 'but the facts I stated were true.' There was the idiotic 'the French don't respect freedom the way Americans do' (what?) and now this.

I dislike anti-Stratfordians, and probably not for the reasons you think. It's the inherent class bias -- that's always the thought behind it! A working-class man couldn't possibly have written such imaginative, beautiful, moving things. How could he have ever known these places without travelling? (Because he didn't make any geographic mistakes like canals in Verona, and none of us have ever written about cities we haven't yet visited, have we?) It had to have been a royal figure! It had to have been a rich man, for imagination is the sole domain of the rich and powerful. Obviously, he was some bumpkin picked by De Vere to capitalise on the plays and become a very, very rich, very revered man in his own lifetime. I await Vincent Van Gogh's unmasking as Emperor Franz Josef.

But it's more than that. It's this woman. Look at the arrogance of what she says! She has studied it 'in depth', which as we all know can mean anything from Rice truly doing a great bit of research for 18th-century Lestat or making hideous, ridiculous mistakes about modern British people and our culture. She maintains throughout her Facebook page that she has taken the time to study all this, and dissenters are really stupid, and Kenneth Branagh will totally make a film about how Shakespeare was a fraud and we're all wrong, because studying literature and loving literature, much less studying authorship can never grant us the same authority as being a published fiction writer.

A pox on her!

I read a really interesting article and debate in the Guardian  a few days ago where several academics who have studied Shakespeare and the issue of whom he truly was for years argued about this. Here I will demonstrate bias myself (Ben Goldacre is side-eyeing me right now) but the academics convinced me more than ever that he was the author of the plays. As one pointed out, we have less evidence that Marlowe was the author of his own work, yet we don't dispute his authorship really, do we?

But Queen Anne has made her increasingly annoying, pig-headed mind up. IShe has pronounced herself expert, as she always, always does on issues she obviously knows very little about. She has a secret door right into sixteenth-century England and her many dorky fans are following, as if she's some tacky jewellery-clad Prophet. Ugh! How did I ever fanworship this clown?
rebness: (Moomins: I wandered lonely)
It's bitterly cold right now. I'm going to have to get a pair of gloves tomorrow  as my hands actually sting when I'm walking about. It's probably not even that cold, but yeeshk!

The job's stressful but that's what I get for selling my soul to work, to be honest. I'm moving to the city centre. I'm going to Russia again (holy shit, I really need to post those photographs soon) and now I'm dreaming of America and trying to plan my trip there in 2012.

What I'd like to do is start off in Montreal and work my way down through the states, and then perhaps Mexico. But I don't know, I always end up with some outlandish thing. I hope/want friends in the UK and US to join me en-route, for however long they want. I just have to work out a goddamn route first.

[/the terrible pain of mooching around exciting countries.]
rebness: (Heimat)
I was in Russia when I received a text from [ profile] mothergoddamn: DARREN HAYES. £25. LIVERPOOL. SAY YOU'LL COME.

I fumbled with my phone: YES!!

Hayes was playing at the Academy, a smallish venue, and we reasoned that he probably didn't have a large fanbase in Liverpool, of all places, so we took sauntered over to the Academy after a couple of drinks last night. I didn't really care about his newer stuff - To the Moon and Back is one of my very favourite songs, so if it the rest of it was crap, I didn't care much.

The place was packed. We couldn't believe how many people were there, that he had such a large following. And it was so much fun from the very beginning. I'm used to indie bands where I'm constantly fighting with the crowd and everyone seems to have cranked their obnoxious level up to 10, but there was none of that last night.

Everyone sang along to the old Savage Garden hits. I remembered exactly why I loved that band so fiercely: their songs just make me so happy. What's wrong with that? The newer stuff was actually fun and decent. He has such a lovely, distinctive voice. Yes, he sang To the Moon and Back and yes, everyone sang along. It was awesome.

Still hot tbh

I just wish all concerts could be that much fun and that good-natured. D'aww. :D


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August 2013

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