The Fine Print and the Fine Lie.

 I have been busting my proverbial posterior in order to get a job for the end of university. I’m sure that most students in my position have been doing very much the same. Real jobs, internships, placements. You name it, I’ve applied for it. I had a call back not so long ago to discuss terms of an internship. I was extremely excited but was rather shot down in discussing some terms and conditions that was not on the website. It was an attractive position but something tells me that I won’t be going for it.

Terms and conditions? Looking for a full time person. Travelling expenses covered to London. A three month placement. Just what I’m looking for. However, it’s unpaid. So let me get this straight. In order to do this job, I have to stay in Reading. In order to do that, I need some rent money; say £900, to stick out the internship for three months. That’s ignoring money for jam, johnnies and juice for the apartment. Maybe this is a bit of a rant, but what the hell? I can’t work full time now, when I have the money and house and food, because I’m at university. My final year, the important one. I can’t work after because I won’t have a job to pay for said house and food and any work I might get in a part time job wouldn’t begin to cover that. Hello, even more debt. What a quandary. 

Stop me if I’m jumping to conclusions, but isn’t this slave labour? I’m working for nothing, full time. It’s a joke. Having ranted to my tutor about it, she pointed out something quite true but that has already been covered by an article I wrote not too long ago. The only people who are going to be able to do these internships are the students from rich families or who live in the immediate area. But the students who have homes in the immediate area are likely to be at university elsewhere. That whittles it down to the rich kids. Once again, the rich kids who have been riding on mummy and daddy’s coattails all their lives, who are still in their childish pupa stages and who are released into the world as children and I’ve already detailed the rest of that story. 

Maybe I’m just bitter I’m not rolling in dough.


First Steps.

How anyone gets anywhere is miracle. How I came to be writing this is a story in itself. Every story has components that work together to make a story alive, make it breathe, make it real. Sometimes, bits of the story are omitted, and the story becomes something else. Not less of a story but it is akin to living with one kidney or one lung. It gets along just fine but there’s more to think about when parts are missing. Once you see that there are missing pieces, you start to wonder whether it matters. What is essential? The who, the where, seem to be redundant organs, winkled out and tossed aside like the appendix or the adenoids to be found at the end, barely a shell and have to be imagined by the implications of the story that has come before.

The who of this story is not important, you can imagine yourself in my place, or not – as you like, some woman or man, however you choose to imagine me. By all means, try to guess by the writing. The where is equally unimportant. So much is assumed of the reader that people who write articles to be read sometimes forget who they’re talking to. Do you see my words on a screen, on paper, in black, in purple, in what font? Where are you? In your bed, at your desk, on a park bench?

Sam came to my house in the city I live in a few days ago. We both live in cities but they are markedly different and seem to be closely in line with each of our personalities. After the initial rush of lust and affection, the talk began. Sam and I can talk for hours about anything we might think of. There is little pressure to provide subjects and we are equally comfortable in silence, each engaged in whatever fancy we might have at that time. In the harsh lights of a Tesco Metro, the idea was broached. Sam’s housemate wanted to start a paper. He needed columns, articles, anything. Would I write? I admit I at first dismissed the idea. No time, too much work, university to deal with, friends, family, drama. Then, without so much as a by-your-leave, my brain began to reel out topics on which I could write. My entire weekend besotted with the idea of writing for others to read and enjoy. Yes. Yes, I would write. A few at first, unhopeful, open to rejection, but it would be a start. I would put figurative pen to paper and write. This is how you come to be reading this now.

No one around me seems to know what they want to do. Shall I be a lawyer? A doctor? A teacher? A bum? An actress? A quote that has become a cliché is that the journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. Perhaps this is my first step into writing. I hope you have enjoyed it.

Pearls and Swine.

One of the stranger things that strikes me about human existence is our consistent ignorance of our own wisdom and it is only in the most unlikely places I can think of that real pearls of wisdom are shared and discussed and real taken notice of. Little pieces of enlightenment where you would not think to look first.

I think it is a fair statement that we all want some kind of happiness, whatever that might be. Lots of allowances are made for those in great sadness. For example, if someone close to me died, I could fill out a form that would allow me extra time for my studies and afford me great sympathy. However, I cannot fill out one for having met with a large amount of happiness. Yet happiness can be just as debilitating as grief. When one is so ecstatically happy that one cannot concentrate on work or other elements of life, those elements predictably suffer, despite the glorious bliss that fills other elements.

We all want more happiness, more things that are good for us. But we have proverbs that warn against greed, hubris and not appreciating what you already have. So, although everyone seeks happiness, it is not always to their benefit when they find it. We preach moderation, but always look for more. We set our sights on true bliss and happiness but we do not always take in account the effects it might have even though extreme sadness is catered for.

Strange, is it not? We value one emotion over another and the treatment of possession of those emotions are so very different. Since just before the New Year of 2011, I have been inundated with a large amount of pure bliss. It is phenomenal the amount of difference one person can make in your life. One grain of rice may tip the scale one way or the other – or perhaps it merely rebalanced me and it is the balance of all things that bring us true satisfaction whether we are entirely happy or utterly miserable.

My grain of rice is called Sam.

Another Birthday.

It occurs to me that the more significance we attach to the growing amount of ubiquitous events in our lives, the more we have to remember. For instance, your birthday, family birthdays, anniversaries of parents and grandparents. When we start getting into ridiculous territory, like the birthday of Mickey Mouse or the celebration of the first grass cutting of the town park, it gets a little too much to handle. I suppose the set-up of this blog is, in a sense, one more thing to add to my list of things to remember and celebrate and occasionally pay attention to.

Here we go, a new project. Another date to add to the calendar.

Hello, Internet.