On Other People’s Advice

Screen Shot 2014-04-10 at 23.52.37

Being a human being is, like, super difficult. Sometimes there are no seemingly /right/ moves, and lines you learnt from films, which were meant to be winning, lead-drop and conversation stop. Problem pages are retro and all you post-millennial kids won’t even know what that is but, basically, any answer one person gives claiming expertise, is almost certainly wrong, if it’s on something subjective like love or sex or friends or just how to make a decision. (Although I’d really like to learn how to comprehensively make a decision: why don’t they teach that in school?)

And I’ve read self-help books. I’ve clutched that shit like it’s Bible-accurate (erm…) and stuck to it even if my heart wanted the opposite. I felt misguided pride at listening to advice and not being the dumb bitch the book said I’d be if I’d given a second chance that time I kinda, sorta, wanted to give a second chance. Even though on TV they always, always give the second chance (Hello Jordan Catalano).

Screen Shot 2014-12-13 at 01.12.03

And that’s a problem, isn’t it? If advice implies you’re a thick bitch, fucking stupid, to do the opposite of what’s instructed? Even if it’s seriously what you want.

I read a lot of internet articles and forums and threads, to see what’s said, like maybe I could piece together the perfect instructions from various locations. But I usually end up more confused, or with labels I didn’t know existed, and never with the answer I set out to get. Because I’m pretty sure that, even if it’s deeply buried, we know what we want to find when we seek advice. We hope there’s justification for what it is that we’ve done, or that maybe we’re not alone, and that there’s a way forward, and a template to help us navigate it. Y’know, the way we keep giving Ben Affleck chances to be a human again, against our collective better judgement.

Screen Shot 2014-12-13 at 01.11.11

I guess it’s sort of sadly that this year I’ve learnt even people I thought were close, didn’t always have my best interests at heart. They might not want to fuck me over intentionally, but some people’s advice giving is more to do with justifying decisions they’ve made in their own lives than helping you with yours. By convincing you to make the choices they have, it validates their life and decision-making. And I choose to believe that none of the terrible advice I received this year was vindictive, that is was always the best answer the person had at the time, according to the compass they use to navigate the scattered territory of their own life. But the judgement weighed heavy. Especially when all I wanted was a person to listen.

Morality’s also at play, and it’s like some people never saw an episode of an American TV show (read Felicity, Scandal, Nashville, etc.), and still think there’s such thing as a concrete right and concrete wrongs. Like, for reals. But there isn’t, not in the polarising, religious, youth group, patronising commandments sense, anyway. Life is super fucking complicated. And this needs to be taken into account. 

Screen Shot 2014-12-13 at 01.25.57

If someone asks your advice, tells you something that happened, something they did, something they’re thinking, listen to them. And find out the context, because context is bloody important. If someone’s asking at all, they’re probably not after a lecture, but an opinion, someone to take them seriously without judgement, who won’t tell them they’re going to hell or, to a lesser degree, that their actions are bad and they’re not a good person anymore. I mean, maybe they are a shitty person. Especially if they’re friends with you. But stock advice has to stop. We’ve got to be kinder to the people we like and love, and tailor our responses to that.

Screen Shot 2014-12-13 at 01.01.39
At times, other people’s advice bites. I just really want you to rely on your own head and your own heart and your own gut. Which is totally easier said than done. But if you could even 10% not give a shit what other people think, you’d be so much happier. Immeasurably so. You’re probably not a bad person, anyway. Life is just hard. Do what makes you happy. And fuck anyone who makes you feel anything less than Jennifer Aniston: a total fucking goddess, yo!

&stayforever (said like it’s one word)

I want to know how to get out of quicksand and survive it. Apparently using a stick helps. Creating bigger footprints. Not struggling. Is that what my problem is?

We both know it’s not easy as exchanging skirts for other sizes or switching gluten for the wheat. There is no fix to anyone’s any of this.

“Everything’s up in the air,” you say, “for everyone,” and we’re each giving advice we don’t know how to take ourselves, even though the things we accept, button like uniform up, we tell others not to.

It’s easier to pull someone out of a pit than it is to get yourself out, I think.

We’ve survived so many things, and some we’re living with, and if there’s one person you can never bin, it’s yourself.

Screen Shot 2014-09-05 at 22.57.35

Maybe this is pointless

And maybe there’s nothing that’s not?

Summoned you like Ouija spirits, but really real, anticipating a late game fix, dissolution grudge; Katy Perry and Rihanna are alleged friends, after allegedly not.

On TV, pointless is ripe a replay, and writers have an endgame, pair they’ll put together if they’re on air in 2 years, 20 or 4. These are the inbetween episodes in which something has to happen.

Because how do you erase somebody? Those fountain pen felt tip disappearers that made mistakes invisible, even those you could squint if you tried. A line-through is more respectful, maybe, than a nothing even there.

I’d like to list the reasonable things. A Top 5 of life is about THIS. But I need more time. A Christmas cut-off, I think.

love her huh

Surprise Centre

Your eyes on the third day. The thread count. Any guess. Cassette tape stretched from rewind. The clock, begging mum for extra. Cigarette breaks. The hip bone flutter. Tendency to say what I mean, mean it. Signal drop out. Age gap mishap. Sofa stitching. “What if,” temporary tattoo, and “Almost.” Touch excuse. 16 hours a day. A stomach kick, brain bleed. No time enough. Your photo jumper. Profile, date stamp. Future. Hanging up last like life dependency. Clarity. An infinite restraint amount destroyed with simple follow.

An-affair-to-remember-an-affair-to-remember-32481243-500-213

Bit Bitter

You can’t give a shit about this dream. Another turned sediment in year-old vodka and that one, the one, was seventh sneer, a forgetting, betting on the wrong X Factor member for the win. Because what should is a very slim and what did is a rim straddler. Success, is every best-friend picked boy over head bands, pleats and horoscope compatibility and Spice Girls’ CDs, cemented in the nineties when we had promise. But promise, no. Ant and Dec had promise then, too; boy band hairstyles fooling no-one.

Twin Fire Signs

There is no perfect point, only a cross-pathed mess of near grabs, almost hads and overs. We’ll see, late, we were a time waste, hoping for a moment to strike, a Biblical revelation, movie-like regeneration, collage scrap fitting an exact left space when, really, life’s a crapshoot, and we’ll be dead soon wishing we’d taken the other when we could’ve except, when you’re dead, there aren’t wishes any more or regrets and any statement of what there is which I could make would be an arrogant stamp, smug snatch at a concept I’m uncomfortable with. But, we should’ve kissed.

How To Be Brave

Saying never is an asking-for-it move and your vows were, “Never you, not you, no,” but me now. And me.

What we bill split I’ll receipt tick and box keep with every egg shell breakfast, cinema stub, left sock, under my bed.

Going back and over what’s said is satisfying when forever can be coddled again. Our always might just be on tap.

A Little Further Away From Me

Since you ended it, slept with my best friend, published secrets about me to gain status, I’ve accepted we’re not an aquarium meet, an accidental street bump which romantic comedy ends us at the same address.

If there are 7 stages, steps, tick boxes to log and work through, I’ve done it, and some I’ve completed more than once. I didn’t cling to concepts past, to versions you were clear were fictions, temporary incarnations. I moved on with a number of men, and I moved back through some who, inappropriate the first time, looked promising like a Spiderman reboot, but essentially, what extra is there? Where’s the worth?

And you might think Batman worked, but in fifty years somebody’s son, grandson’s going to remake or boot it and you’ll curse the Christian Bale choice, because hindsight makes us all look shit. And I wish I said granddaughter, that it could stand, turn in 2062, but who the fuck am I kidding?

If something doesn’t change, move against it, because nothing’s constant: even stone statues melt.

Thanks For Being Humiliated With Me

I hoped that you’d get together but I hoped that too with Joey and Dawson and I’ve never recovered from that wrong choosing, even when I said I had, got determined to pick my own Pacey even though flaky men and downright liars aren’t my type, but some women are impressionable, impressed with bullshit stories and outdoor sex and boats and unbuttoned top buttons.

This is the 6 episode tease as the end unravels although, actually, the end started way back, when Mum birthed the last of us. Since then we’ve been treading water, ready to contaminate us all by 2018. Or, you know, a comet or something.