Category: Opinions and rants

What were you thinking part 2 (from an unexpected source!)

If you laughed / scratched your head in bewilderment at the sartorial faux pas by the Topshop designers, I raise your disbelief and give you Gucci.

Yes, Gucci. Renowned fashion house, stalwarts of style, designs desired all over the world.

Are these the ugliest shoes ever? (this is a semi rhetorical question, if you can find an uglier pair then please let me know).

Gucci have gone to the trouble of giving these horrors a pretty name (Ilse, in case you were wondering) but the fact that this is succeeded by the description of “sock sandal” makes Ilse the girl no-one wants to be associated with.

And whilst Topshop’s jeans could be described as throwaway fashion at £45 (not by me, I hasten to add), these sandals cost an eye watering $1200 (that’s approx. £1000 at current exchange rates).

Now, in order to cater to the masses shouldn’t the inner foot come in lots of different colours, in the same way as foundation shades? Say, for example, you were wearing them under jeans and you were dark skinned, would people think you’d had your own feet amputated and were wearing prosthetics? I have a feeling I’m over thinking this, but enquiring minds need to know.

On the plus side (and there has to be one, right?) the sock part can be removed, leaving just the shiny red sandals. Phew.

Gucci Ilse red sandal

Is this a designer look that will filter down to the high street? Expect to see sock sandals in a Primark near you soon!

Thanks, as always, for reading. x

One person does not represent an entire religion

In light of what happened in London yesterday, the above is something that we all need to remember. I was dreading reading the inevitable comments from racist bigots, Britain’s First supporters, UKIP voters and some Brexiters saying this would never have happened if we were stricter with our borders.

London

Luckily I’ve seen very little of this ilk. And, based on today’s news that the attacker was British born, it would be nonsense anyway (not that haters are ever stopped by facts).

I don’t think anyone can be surprised at the attack. Surprised at the location and method, yes. But surely we’ve all been expecting something, if we’re truthful. My only surprise is that it has taken so long after the Paris and Brussels attacks. And that’s testament to our police and intelligence service, and their commitment to keeping the general public safe.

It seems very much that this attacker was a lone wolf. It wasn’t a carefully orchestrated attack. A guy driving a car at people and then stabbing with knives isn’t on the same scale as the armed terrorists who killed so many revellers in the Bataclan, or the timed multiple bomb attacks in Belgium. That’s not to say it’s any less serious – of course it isn’t – but it does seem to suggest that there’s nothing that could have been done to stop it, which again leads back to the great job being done to foil bigger, more complex terror plots.

It’s heartening to see and hear people pulling together, reiterating that terrorists won’t win, and standing proud in protection of our nation and the values we hold dear. And while we must pay our respects to those who’ve been injured or tragically killed, we also need to be mindful of other people who weren’t involved but will be affected – Muslim students turned against by fellow pupils, Muslim parents and their children being racially abused in the streets, Muslim shopkeepers in fear of their livelihoods being retaliated against. These people are innocent victims too; tarred with the same brush purely because of their religious beliefs or colour of their skin.

In the wake of any mindless tragedy, strength comes from deep within, from the power of community and humanity. Don’t let terrorists take that strength away from us by inciting divisions.

RIP to PC Keith Palmer and the other innocent victims.

Thanks, as always, for reading. x

Oh Topshop, what were you thinking?

Have you ever put on a pair of jeans and wished there was a window to your knees?

No? Then you’re not the target market for Topshop’s latest denim design.

I can’t think who they think the target market is, but somebody somewhere thought there was a gap in the market for a pair of jeans with see through plastic knee patches.

So many questions. The main one being “why?” Followed by “why, why, WHY?” Followed by “wouldn’t they make your knees sweat?”, “wouldn’t they steam up?” and “WHY?” quite a few more times.

I could write at length about how fecking ridiculous these things are, but what would be the point? I think everyone reading this knows how ridiculous they are, without me helping you along in the thought process!

(Do take a moment to read the product reviews though, if you fancy even more of a giggle)

Not quite as bad, but still downright ridiculous are these party skirt jeans, which are also available on their website.

Topshop skirt overlay jeans

Topshop – Twit of the Day!

Thanks, as always, for reading. x

The Lent Diaries – What Ellen Wrote

This feels like a bit of a cheat post to me, because I generally write original content (whether its any good or not is a different matter!) But I just have to implore you to read my friend Ellen’s blog, which at the moment is focussing on her experience of giving up sugar and alcohol for Lent.

Lent

This is not for religious reasons; more Ellen being a stubborn so and so, and proving to herself that she can do it. Which I applaud massively. I’d much rather support other people giving things up than do it myself. Things like Stop-tober and Dry-January are bad enough at 30 days, but Lent is a whole 40 days which, if you can’t do the maths, is a whole 9 days – or 1.5 weeks (almost longer).

Anyway, back to Ellen’s diaries. They’re insightful, funny and more funny. I think you’ll enjoy them. Even if you don’t, you’ll be grateful that you didn’t make such a nuts decision! (sorry, Ellen)

Let me know what you think! Thanks, as always, for reading! x

 

M&S – you’re crackers! (Twit of the Day!)

Last Sunday one of our friends came round for lunch (I do cook a mean roast, even if I say so myself).

Instead of dessert, he brought round a cheeseboard. Genius decision – I frickin’ love cheese.

Now, I know M&S is a stalwart of all things amazeballs to eat, and their TV adverts can turn me into a dribbling mess of food desire, but I have to call them out on their cracker “serving suggestion”.

A stack of 7 crackers with a wedge of cheese on it? Who has a mouth that big? Or that moist?

2017-02-25-19-35-05

M&S…you usually smash it, but instead you’re my Twit of the Day!

Thanks, as always, for reading! x

It’s nice to be nice!

Because a big part of my job is looking after social media, I get to see all sorts of things I wouldn’t usually come across. How else would I know that last Friday was Random Acts of Kindness Day?

Well, actually, I was aware-ish because Fiona over at Fiona Likes to Blog posted about it, with a whole list of lovely things you can do to make someone smile. Have a read of her suggestions.

My absolute favourite one on there is “pay someone a compliment”. People love to get compliments (as long as they’re genuine!) In fact, certainly in my case, we’re so used to people being mean to each other these days, and reading/hearing critical insulting opinions on Twitter, Facebook, the news and in magazines and newspapers, that a genuine compliment holds more weight than ever. It’s like it’s a surprise that people still have the ability to say nice things!

its-nice-to-be-nice

A few years ago the husband pointed out that I was staring at a woman and that it was rude. I told him that I was only looking because she looked fabulous. And it got me to thinking how cross (and paranoid) I get when I think someone’s staring at me, but maybe they’re looking for nice reasons too. So now, if someone catches me looking at them, I try to let them know the reason why (unless it’s a bad reason, obvs!) If I walk past someone wearing great shoes, I’ll tell them. See a girl with funky hair – I say it looks ace. And don’t just reserve it for appearance related stuff. If someone does something kind, point it out. If a sales assistant is particularly helpful, let them know.

You don’t need to do it all the time, that would be overkill, but a well placed acknowledgement can also do wonders for your own wellbeing. Try it, and see how good you feel knowing you’ve made someone else feel good too.

Spread the love!

Love is love – whatever your gender

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I’ve been buoyed to read about two organisations who are appealing to same sex couples as well as the more “traditional” heterosexual man and woman relationship in the celebration of love.love-is-love

The first is Lush, who’s Stateside advertising campaigns have included two men and two women. It’s a shame that the first thing many people notice is that the people in the adverts are the same gender, rather than that the people in the adverts are quite clearly in love, but I guess this is part of what Lush is trying to do – make same sex relationships more “normal” by representing them in the public eye. It’s only unusual because it’s unusual, if that makes sense? Were we surrounded by images of same sex couples in the same way as hetero couples – out furniture shopping, eating out, buying a car – then there wouldn’t be such a big deal because the general public would be used to it.

Secondly is Sainsbury’s who are selling same sex Valentine’s cards. Brilliant! It’s good for people – any people – to see themselves represented in society as it’s a kind of validation that we’re ok, we’re acceptable. This is why soap operas try to include minority characters. And while it’s probably not the most difficult thing to buy a neutral Valentine’s card if you’re in a sae sex relationship, it’s a big step for Sainsbury’s as a high street retailer who could potentially face a backlash from the small minded bigoted people who still have an issue with consenting adults who love each other but have the same parts below the waist.

On that note I think that too many people are caught up in what happens between the sheets in a same sex relationship. Just like with hetero couples, sex isn’t the be all and end all. Why are people so obsessed? Why does it matter? Isn’t it more important that people are happy, content, loved, looked after, caring, nurturing and nice to each other? Isn’t that what any relationship is about? Is it anyone’s business who puts what (if anything) in what hole?

A friend of mine got married to his long term partner of 16 years at the weekend. And that’s joyous. Not only that they have found each other, but that society has now progressed to a point where their union can be recognised in law and in love. That they can openly celebrate and enjoy the same benefits as other married couples – taxes and inheritance and entitlements. That they can hold hands and kiss and profess their love to each other in front of family and friends.

Because, ultimately, that’s what it’s all about. Love.

And anyone who is against love must be bonkers.

Thanks, as always, for reading! x

Trump, the woman hater

I wasn’t going to say anything about this, really I wasn’t; I think I’ve made my stance about my feelings for the President perfectly clear, along with my feelings about abortion and women’s reproductive health.

So you don’t need to hear me rant on about it again.

But I need to acknowledge what that orange fuckwit has done, in the company of other people who don’t own a vagina, to set back women’s rights and women’s health in the whole world, not just on his own doorstep.

trump-signing-abortion-legislation

Aside from the fact that there is nothing wrong with birth control even if you use it purely to avoid pregnancy, what about women who use it for non contraceptive reasons? Women with acne, or endometriosis, or hormone imbalances?

Why and how and why again does Trump think he has the right to fuck about with women’s lives? It’s not like he doesn’t have younger women in his life. He has a much younger wife, and he’s already expressed his attraction to his own daughter (shudder) so he’s not out of touch with women. What on earth could possess him to do this?

And people are still asking why women outside of the US were “bothering to get involved in pointless Women’s Marches”?

This. This is why. Because Trump is already verging into dictator territory, already publicly displaying his contempt for women, and already using his position of power to further his own personal beliefs.

And that’s a danger to women across the globe.

To finish on a lighter note, this was the best placard I saw from one of the UK marches at the weekend.

president-fart

President Fart. President Hot Air. President. President Noisy and Embarrassing. So there.

Thanks, as always, for reading. x

An ode to the Obamas

I’ll start this post by sharing my Facebook status from 5.07pm yesterday, as that abominable man came to power.

trump-inauguration-status

But this post isn’t about him. It’s about the departing First Family. Because that’s what they are. Barack’s reign wasn’t just about him. It was about a bigger picture. His wife. His kids. He truly was a President to be revered and respected.

Yes there are statistics around how much he increased national debt, and how many bombs he dropped (uncertified, BTW). But we have to remember that we’re not comparing like with like. Every Presidency is different and faces different challenges than the one before it.

Besides, the measure of a man is not just his leadership skills. It’s his emotions, connections with people, and grace. Barack was the first President to have access to Twitter (which should, by the way, be repealed now the orange moron is in charge. Someone put parental locks on and change his password, please!) He came across as likable, intelligent and real. His “bromance” with VP Joe Biden was heartwarming; and the fact that he referred to it in the latter days of his presidency, as he  awarded him the Medal of Freedom, was fantastic.

I love this video. I truly believe he’s a husband first, and doing a job second.

Barack and Michelle ooze love and respect.

I said it earlier in this post, but he’s real. A real person, with a real sense of humour, real wife and kids, and real emotions. He cares. Being President wasn’t a personal victory for him. It wasn’t a popularity contest. Can we assume the same about the new guy?

(sorry, I forgot, it’s not about him)

So here’s to you, lovely Obamas. And your children. And your legacy. You’ve done good. So good.

barack-and-michelle-obama

And now it’s time to go backwards again (dammit! I can’t help myself!)

Thanks, as always, for reading! x

Religion and medicine don’t mix – and nor should they

It was with alarm that I read an article last week regarding a new ruling in the US, which grants medical professionals the right to refuse treatment based on “religious freedom”. Put simply, this means that doctors can refuse to treat a person who is transgender, or a woman who has had an abortion, because of their “beliefs”.

You can read the article here.

religion-and-medicine

(image from Medicine Today)

Quite frankly there is no room for such judgement in medicine. In fact there’s no room for such judgement in life, but bigots will be bigots and some Christians will wheel out the bits of the bible that back up their narrow minded beliefs, whilst ignoring the other bits that may see themselves acting against God’s will (yawn). The latter is a fight too big for anyone to win. But the former is absolutely appalling.

Imagine, perhaps, a woman who has been raped and aborted the resulting pregnancy. Tormented by the attack, potentially tormented by the abortion, and yet a doctor – who should be a trusted and trustworthy individual – can torment her further for a prior circumstantial decision?

Or, how about this, a woman who fell pregnant by mistake, didn’t want a child, and has no guilt about aborting a collection of cells that was unloved and unplanned. It happens, and is nothing to be ashamed of. Why should she be judged and refused healthcare or medical treatment in the future when, actually, she made the right decision in view of the amount of unwanted, mistreated children brought into the world, and the number of kids in children’s homes and care who will probably never be rehomed with a new family.

(sorry, this is turning into a pro-abortion rant which, whilst I feel very very strongly about it, is not the focus of this post. You can read more about my personal views on abortion here – the irony of the post title is not lost on me).

Think of a transgender person, born into the wrong body, living with the wrong identity and genitalia for however many years, hiding themselves for fear of judgement and perhaps being driven to the brink of suicide. Think of that person making the gender transformation and finally feeling free, feeling like the person they actually are, feeling like they can finally live. And then think of a doctor refusing to treat them purely on the grounds of their transition.

Too many people feel they have the right to interfere in decisions that don’t really affect them or their lives. Transgender people and women who’ve undergone abortions are too often ridiculed and vilified by the general public, especially in today’s social media world where everyone thinks they have the right to push their opinion on others. To have that ridicule and vilification reiterated by a medical professional is dangerous. It sends out completely the wrong message to everyone. It instigates a class system; a measure of worthiness to what should be a basic right for everyone in the world.

I see it like this – if you choose medicine as your profession then you deliver that service to everyone who needs it. You don’t get to pick and choose. It should be a vocation, and your priority should be to ensure that people who need medical help receive that medical help; regardless of what they may have done in the past. Because you are a doctor. You’re not God. You don’t get to decide, or judge, or devalue people. You make them better.

Unfortunately I fear this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to healthcare in America. With Donald Trump about to be inaugurated, making him one of the most powerful people in the world (shudder at that thought, and the sheer ridiculousness that it has ever gotten to this point), there is no such thing as a safe future for anything that currently sits in the American constitution. He will lead by emotion and personal belief, regardless of whether it’s right or wrong for the country – the intention to repeal Obamacare is proof of that.

Buckle up Americans. Your future health is at risk, along with who knows what else.

Thanks, as always, for reading! x