Soul education: How I used an unpleasant life event to become a stronger person

Soul education: How I used an unpleasant life event to become a stronger person

NOTE: This is NOT intended to be a pity parade. I learned a lot, and was not traumatised.

A few years ago, I was a “victim” of sexual harassment from my unofficial boss at the time. This was before I started questioning social norms, reading political opinion blogs (ah, the glory days of inner peace), and before I truly understood my own boundaries…so…whose victim was I really? Possibly my own.

I was interning at a small events and media company headed by a successful bloke from West London. He offered me a weekly unpaid job and I thought job opportunities would just burst out at me after this, no doubt. I wrote up phony articles about some bars in Camden (for a website I now suspect he’d just set up to occupy my time) and was part of a team helping him to organise some skeezy luxury-themed events. He would get me in his office whenever I finished my writing and would congratulate me for my work and “confide” in me. He’d show me a terrible film he was working on and ask for my approval. It was weird, to say the least, but me, being the remarkably agreeable person that I was, I went along with it. I kind of admired him as I tend to admire those who make something of their lives, I assumed I should probably learn something from him.

Anyway, one evening he took me and a friend of his to review the opening of a new club night in central London. It was exclusive, fancy, free drinks, great fun. I interviewed some people just to impress my boss – I hung out with him and tried to ask him what elements I should review and how (this was my first reviewing gig) – most of all, I drank. His friend kept seeming to leave us alone together and bring us booze whenever we ran out. Somehow it wasn’t quite the professional visit I’d bargained for.
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O Glorious Gender

O Glorious Gender

I was a little apprehensive about writing this piece, because what authority do I have? I hold no degree in “Gender & Sexuality studies” like the writer of this drivel. Then I decided that if people can write politically acceptable articles based on nearly nothing, then I could do the same, only a bit less acceptable – ‘cause why the hell not.

That’s it.

I’m saying it.

I think traditional gender roles are beautiful.

It took a few years of consideration but the movie Deerhunter did it for me.

There is a meaning and a priceless value to intense emotions, so intense that they scar you physically as well as mentally. I personally have cherished every bursting surge of life that a rush of uncontrollable emotion brings – this is why people often take drugs if they are feeling understimulated by their day to day routine. This is why people have casual sex, or go paragliding, or get into street fights. These are all short term, life affirming moments accorded us by our fellow humans.

But there is truth in saying that ultimate transcendence, in the form bestowed upon us by Nature herself, lies in birth and death. In between those two events of a person’s life there are countless opportunities that allow us to experience these core feelings to varying degrees, such as the ones mentioned above.

I think it is fair to say that two concrete manifestations of these events are war and childbirth.
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The Glory Days of the Web

The Glory Days of the Web

You know how, as people grow older, they become more and more conservative? Ugh, I can’t believe I’m that guy, before even turning 30. This might be due to more than just bitterness and being overworked. I think a lot of it has to do with nostalgia.

Even after long years of consideration, debate, and self-doubt, I’ve realised that I simply and honestly prefer lots of things how I remember them to the way they are now. Sure, progress is a staple of humanity and it’s unstoppable. But could we not have progressed more in some other directions? Ideas: toilet paper hasn’t changed in centuries. Matches are still essentially the same, and so are calculators.

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