oh dear. The summer has arrived. The post-exam ecstasy is wearing off and I’m starting to wish I had something to do with my time besides sleep and go out… I know that having too much free time might seem a ridiculous thing to complain about and some would argue I should be grateful that I can play all day because one of these days I’ll have to leave my magic college bubble and start to work many many hours. But the thing is a lifestyle where you have something to do for the majority of your waking hours- where you feel each day has a direction or a purpose, is an awful lot more enjoyable, if not more carefree, than one where what you make (or fail to make) of each day depends entirely on you. While at work or at school you feel you’re where you’re supposed to be, there is a structure. This is the hard part, once it’s done the day becomes your own, you’ve looked forward to it since morning and you know what you want to do with your time. Whether you’re going to hit the shops, visit friends or crash in front of the tv with a plate of cheese covered carb you can enjoy your ‘you’ time because you’ve already spent several hours being somewhat productive and doing something that is a means to some end.
When you have a job or school or lectures you wake up in the morning and think ‘Right this is how my day will begin, or in the case of lectures, my activities today will have to be structured around this’. Without such activities to anchor our days your thoughts when you first open your eyes are ‘Right, where do I start?’. Perhaps this is not a problem that all people have. Maybe there are those of you who have the discipline to impose their own rigorous schedules and deadlines on themselves and keep them. I am not one of these people. I need structure and outside pressure to motivate me. I need to feel something other than me not being idle is at stake. Maybe that’s a sign of a lack of self respect. I should care about my own interests above those of the people depending on me…But regardless of deeper issues at stake,or whether these issues are universal the fact remains that I am dreading the expanse of free time stretching out before me for june, july and august. I cannot face the idea of 90+ mornings where I struggle to think of pressing reasons to leave my bed. I need something to occupy me.
Thus far the job search has been fruitless and while I plan to persevere the point of this post (yes I’ve finally reached it) is to consider what other options are open to me to amuse myself and feel useful, in the awful (but probable) event that nobody wants to employ me. First of all there’s volunteering. Looks good on the CV I hear and they say it’s good for the soul. I’d really like to get involved with visitations. To hospital or the elderly. The way folks treat old people really bothers me you see. I think it’s because old people make us sad. They are frail and lonely and remind us of where we’re headed, so we make them invisible. I like people, including old ones. I like talking to them.
I’m also hoping to volunteer at a couple of festivals, something I must chase up. But none of these activities are full time. I still have to face the fact that the majority of the next three months will probably consist of days without structure…So it’s time to start thinking of ways to fill days. According to Harold and Maude and Cat Stephens there’s a million things to do. I already have a few ideas. I want to start a sketching club with a few of my friends. We’ll go to a different location every week, sketch for an hour or two and get coffee afterwards. I’m hoping to put up a few notices around town too, get other people involved. If this IS going to be a summer of unemployment it might as well be a Summer where I make new friends. I’m also hoping to post in this blog quite alot. And to learn to drive. And finish Moby Dick. There’s also the question of money- if I had a little I could fund some fun. So maybe I could make some without a job. Number one money making idea at the minute is starting a tour guide company, but being in Dublin would make that easier. Then there is the face mask making..I could knock out a few jars of the honey stuff and sell them at markets. I mean, if I can’t get a job I should make my own opportunities right?
One of these days I need to take my own advice. instead of saying ‘I should do that’ i should do it. I reckon a few more risks are in order.
I don’t know if this applies to all Irish people but I always get a massive stab of pride when i see anybody from Ireland winning fame/acclaim abroad. It doesn’t matter whether or not I actually believe they’re insanely talented it’s just a nice affirmation, evidence that we as a country can compete with the best of them. You know, the states that have had Renaissances and won loads of wars and built pyramids…those guys.
Now and again though, somebody (or a band of somebodies) who is genuinely cause for excitement will emerge in Ireland. Somebody like the Rags. In that case it’s not just the status of the nation that has me hoping they’ll succeed. It’s justice. Yep, the idea that a band this brilliant might not get recognition, approval, exaltation in any country besides our own is to my mind absolutely offensive to right and reason.
So, if you happen to be reading this (as I’m sure a million,. billion people are, even at this very moment) give them a listen
tell your friends. Oh and if you’re gonna be about Dublin, head down to their album launch on the 29th. The Rags are amazing, Recognise the Rags!
woke up this morning with a familiar feeling. A particular brand of shame ( my friend and I call it the Shame) which always catches up with me the morning after a night of particularly cringe-inducing drunken exploits. Funny it never ACCOMPANIES said exploits-i wish it did, if it had the decency to show up on time i would cease and desist. Instead it comes over me twelve hours later, waving an accusing, finger, making me curse my lack of sense and self control when the damage has already been done.
The worst part is that lately i’ve been making a conscious effort to avoid falling into the dreaded shame trap. I was concentrating on drinking to be merry-not messy and trying to suppress those awful urges to ‘get my bit’ while hammered…unfortunately last night i threw all such caution to the wind and now i can’t shake this awful sense of dread and disgust…just weighing me down
Fortunately time heals all wounds…even self inflicted shamey ones. it’s now about twenty four hours later and i’m finally able to look in the mirror again without pulling a frustrated face..Must continue in my attempt to beat the shame by taking preventative measures.
My tips for no shame:
1.DON’T buy more drink than you think you’ll need…EVER!Even if you find yourself sober if you’re actually enjoying the night it shouldn’t matter. If you start to think ‘wow i’m really not drunk enough’ then the real problem is probably that you aren’t having enough fun and drinking more isn’t going to change that. I know I sound like a poster girl for Drink Aware but it’s true. Alcohol is great for livening you up when you’re already in good form but if you aren’t it tends to make things worse, not only will you still feel low another two drinks later but you’ll be (a) much less adept at sexy dancing (b) much more likely to fall/mill yourself/make a massive mistake of some kind and DISGRACE yourself. When you’re on the sober side even if you aren’t having the absolute bant, at least you’re less likely to say and do things that you don’t mean and have to deal with the consequences when you get a flashback a few days later.
2. There can be certain people in our lives whose presence will increase our capacities for shame-making behaviour. Whether it’s an ex you haven’t quite stopped kissing, a crush, a bad influence or just somebody you really don’t like your mental wellbeing the following morning depends on you avoiding such people like the plague (this will be alot easier if you’ve been moderate in your drink consumption-see above tip). Before going out consider who is going to which club and factor that into your decision making. Tell yourself as you’re drinking that if you DO see such and such that you will not allow yourself to be influenced or give them any opportunity to get a rise out of you.
3. Don’t go out if extremely tired or hungry-this stuff is kinda basic.
4.Go out with people who you’re comfortable with and who you always have fun with, that will reduce the likelihood of you drinking waaaaaaaaaaaay too much AND thus the likelihood of you making an absolute state of yourself.
ok forget above post
ridiculous panic over. Gonna man up and destroy these exams! (in a positive, passing kind of way…)
Only 6 days til normal life can resume, starting with many rounds, days in the park and a nice helping of cocorosie.
No banter OR antics to speak of (hopefully this won’t be characteristic of future posts), exams start tomorrow and all concentration/motivation/will to work has inexplicably vanished…on holidays i expect. Tried typing ‘what happens when you fail college exams because you kept letting yourself get distracted’ into google images, hoping all the depressing pictures of my possibly bleak future would scare me into cramming.
Astonishingly google didnt have any exact matches for my search. Or anything related at all actually, it was a nice time waster though…it did provide this http://www.tubecityonline.com/almanac/images/080414c.jpg
Possible living arrangement when i can no longer afford to repeat?