My Granny’s Flat

knightswood

For some reason I’ve been missing my Gran & Grandpa’s flat in Knightswood, Glasgow, recently.

I miss the mix of 1970s/80s tat and heavy Victorian-ish wooden furniture. And the way it smelt of fags & a coal fire. And the way it was always Sunday, and I played 2nd World War spies in the garden and Cleopatra or Jane Eyre or The Little Princess was on the television.

 

I miss the hay-wain, the flamenco dancer and the green lady.

I miss the dolly toilet roll cover, the shire horse ornament & the Nessie.

I miss the Island of Adventure (not so much – it’s in my room), the reader’s digest, and the bible.

& I miss James Last, Mantovani and Glen Miller.

Rurik Jutting: Murder Stories

I was trying to avoid news on my blog… but news is shaped like fiction and this story shows an ambivalence in the way we treat victim and perpetrator based on background.

Rurik Jutting is a white, British, privately educated investment banker who raped, tortured and killed two Indonesian women who were working as prostitutes in Hong Kong because they needed the money.

The BBC concentrates on his disorders, addictions, and his claim that he was sexually abused as a child by another child at his school.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-china-37845488

The Mirror concentrates on his sexual sadism and the suffering of the victims.

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/brit-banker-rurik-jutting-found-9217514

The Guardian concentrates on the poverty & exploitation of the victims – but can’t bring itself to admit that they were prostitutes – because making all aspects of prostitution legal is now left-wing & feminist.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/nov/08/rurik-jutting-guilty-murder-indonesian-women-hong-kong

The Daily Mail thinks he’s a monster but is focused on contrasting his evil with his aspirational background.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3916324/Depraved-Jutting-suffered-personality-disorder-aged-ELEVEN-Murderer-took-offence-mother-congratulated-private-school-scholarship.html

Financial News covers the fate of his colleagues.

http://news.efinancialcareers.com/uk-en/264915/rurik-jutting-colleagues-london

Hong Kong is interested in his work stress and the way he wanted to push the boundaries of submissive women…

https://www.hongkongfp.com/2016/10/31/british-bankers-defence-cites-sexual-disorder-in-hong-kong-double-murder-trial/

& there have been protests against wealthy immigrant decadence and calls for justice.

https://www.eveningexpress.co.uk/pipe/news/international/british-banker-found-guilty-of-murdering-indonesian-women-in-hong-kong-apartment/

& he himself – in rambling videos – admitted to being a racist, sexist, privileged man who felt excited by & entitled to – inflict pain on women… But he also knew he wouldn’t get away with it.

http://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/news/cambridge-news/rurik-jutting-facebook-murder-video-12074568

Myself – I find it impossible to care about the killer. I care that his victims had to go through such horrific ordeals. And the older I get, the more I would lock him away for life without a moment’s reflection.

 

 

 

 

Creative Dream Incubator

In a world of doubt and dismay it’s good to have a bit of wishful thinking in your life… As long as you don’t get too fixated on outcomes that may or may not manifest – it gives you hope for the future and solace for the past.

Andrea Schroeder of The Creative Dream Incubator is one of my favourite suppliers of happy place woo-woo… Find her inspirational classes and videos here:

http://www.creativedreamincubator.com/andrea-schroeder/

And below is my paraphrasing of her latest email… which pinged into my inbox & made me feel warm & fuzzy.

Andrea:

I think of magic as another word for truth. The truth is, you are literally made of magic: stardust and creativity and love and dreams. The truth is, you can do anything – this is what it means to be a creative being. Your dreams are the blueprints for what you are here on earth to create.

madeofmagic

You are literally, truthfully, actually MADE of magic.

This is your radiant core self.

And allowing more of your radiant core self to shine through your daily self is a how you bring more of your magic into the world and into your life.

Breathe into your heart. What’s there?

You are FULL of power and possibility and the ability to make your dreams real.

You are made of magic: creativity and optimism and resilience and inspiration and trust and love.

Believe in the power of your magic – you are amazing!

Dean’s Book of Fairy Tales

When I was wee my Dean’s Book of Fairy Tales was one of my most treasured possessions – the others being Dean’s Alice In Wonderland, Dean’s Sleeping Beauty and my extensive Ladybird book collection.

What made Dean’s Book of Fairy Tales so special was the beautiful, spindly illustrations by Janet and Anne Grahame Johnstone, twin sisters born in 1926 who lived and worked together until Janet’s tragic death in a fire in 1979. Anne worked on alone until 1998.

More info on them here: http://www.wordsandpics.org/2015/10/the-art-of-johnstone-twins.html

and more info on Dean & Son here: http://www.vintagepopupbooks.com/Dean_Son_Publishers_History_s/1853.htm#axzz4E3kHEVYf

Social Media Fiefdoms

God-Speed-Edmund-Blair-Leighton-1852-1922

The other day I was reading a blog by a fat girl & it was weird. I’m fat (ish! ish!) myself so I can relate to the social / romantic misery of it when you’re young – and no one should ever treat you badly because of it – but what I didn’t get was the guff about diets being akin to genocide (you won’t be eradicated – you’ll be thinner) and the strange demands made of ‘allies’.

There was a whole list of things that thin people must do if they want to be an ally of the fat person.

They must say the friend is fat and oppressed,  they must not talk about their own body issues – in fact – they must not have body issues, they must acknowledge the emotional work that the fat girl must do daily to talk about her fat, they must care enough about her to feel ‘unsafe’ in these endless conversations about her being fat, they must not blame her for being fat, they must know that they can do harm even when they’re trying to do good & – finally – when she tells them what she needs, they must supply it.

So I wondered how & why this whinny bore would have any allies?

I’ve seen these kind of demands before – in the form of articles on sites like Salon, Buzzfeed, Jezebel or Everyday Feminism – made by depressed people, or trans people or WOC & it always makes them seem like high-maintenance leeches – but then – they also have concrete things they need to get – mainly help from doctors or justice in the courts – so it made a kind of sense. This fat girl wants nothing but an entourage.

And it occurred to me – all these Identity / Personality Cults – are the internet’s religion.

In a fusion of social causes, self-help, celebrity and Capitalism – there’s evolved a new kind of Feudal Chivalry.

The Oppressed or Famous Person is the King or the Damsel.

The Ally is the Knight who pledges fealty to the King and who fights on behalf of the Damsel.

Some Scandal / Demand / Product is the Joust or the Quest.

Attention / Praise / Virtue / Status / Love / Money is the prize / tribute / tithe / tax

Some groups – like Hackers – will function like a Monastic Order.

It’s not really a surprise considering the most active social media users seem to be immersed in fantasy video games with their medieval value systems and changeable avatars.

The dark side of this – is the dark side of any religion: Liars, con-artists, impostors, thieves, predators –  trolls, flamers, Edgelords – the murky cults (pro-ana, suicide, killing, child abuse, even truly unbelievable things like Erotic Cannibalism) – and the treatment of heretics, atheists, apostates and heathens who get doxed, outed, reported to their employer, stalked, bullied, harassed, slandered, shunned, told to kill themselves, threatened, and murdered.

It also stops a critique of a global economic system that puts the advancement of a few above the security and rights of the many. Worse – like a Ponzi scheme – it encourages the poor to give to the rich in the vain hope of joining them.

There’s also those of us who don’t realise we’ve stumbled upon a cult, try to make a point (apparently logic is oppressive to oppressed persons – even if they’re only oppressed in their own heads) and end up with a heap of Screaming Popes in our notifications.

I’m still bruised from the Torchwood forum.

bacon_screaming_po_2352205b