Mediocre Failures

Disappointed Idealist

My children are adopted. They were adopted at the ages of three, four and six. As with nearly all children adopted in this country over the last couple of decades, this means that their early life experiences were pretty terrible. As each was born, their collective experience of life became more damaging, as their circumstances worsened. So the eldest is least affected as her first years were perhaps less difficult experiences, while the youngest is most affected, as her entire first two years of life were appalling. I’m not going to go into detail here about their specific early life experiences, but if you want to read up on the sort of effects which can result from serious neglect or abuse, then you could read this .

Why am I writing this ? Especially now after midnight in the middle of the Easter holidays ? It’s because I’m so angry I…

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Consent: Not actually that complicated

rockstar dinosaur pirate princess

A short one today as my life is currently very complicated and conspiring against my preference to spend all of my days working out what to blog. But do you know what isn’t complicated?


It’s been much discussed recently; what with college campuses bringing in Affirmative Consent rules, and with the film of the book that managed to make lack of consent look sexy raking it in at the box office. You may not know this, but in the UK we more or less have something similar to ‘affirmative consent’ already. It’s how Ched Evans was convicted while his co-defendant was not – and is along the lines of whether the defendant had a reasonable belief that the alleged victim consented. From the court documents it appears that while the jury felt that it was reasonable to believe that the victim had consented to intercourse with the co-defendant, it…

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Advanced selling techniques

It’s been a while since I made a post. It’s also been a while since I made overzealous use of gifs. I must rectify that.

Since I saw you last, I have dipped a toe into the murky pool of online dating. Wow. It’s been… interesting. Often in ways which make me wonder whether these people have ever interacted with other humans before.

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The over-valuation of “nice”

I find myself rolling my eyes a lot lately at the seeming plethora of posts in various places whining about how nice guys or girls finish last. This is generally a complaint about how the object of somebody’s affection doesn’t like them back and supposedly only likes the bad ones.

Because when you can’t find a relationship, the common denominator is clearly that a entire gender all shares the same failing rather than being you. Uh huh. Or maybe it’s just daft to expect that simply being nice is a ticket to love and sex and happy ever after.

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In your own words

So a popular young YouTube blogger named Zoe Sugg (aka ‘Zoella’) has released the first novel under her name. There is a lot of talk about this for various reasons. One is that it has sold at record breaking speed. Another is that she is immensely popular for dispensing beauty tips to a very young age group; this has inspired some talk about marketing and messages to young girls.

The one that pisses me off is that it’s ghost written.

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Starting again

So after a bit of an argument with a horse (spoiler alert: he won) I’ve been off running for 12 weeks. I had some pretty nasty soft tissue damage around my back and lower hip that took a very long time to heal. It’s been frustrating – I’ve been walking fine for a while, but there was this stubborn little patch which refused to go away. If I even took a few quick strides to finish crossing a road or jog up the last couple of stairs I could feel it right through my flesh, so I knew running was a bad plan.

So finally this afternoon I decided to venture back out. Moment of braveness, madness, possibly both. I was more than a little worried about the dent this might have made in my basic fitness (since I only started seriously exercising in January) and about whether I was truly healed enough. So when I wasn’t worried about aggravating an injury I was worried about my lungs giving out on me!

Thankfully, all is well. Hip twinged a couple of times but nothing to worry about, and I held up okay. At peak fitness I was routinely doing about half an hour/4k non-stop without too much trouble. Today I did two fifteen minute stretches with a three minute break between. I was more winded than usual, but not uncomfortably. After 12 weeks of sitting on my arse I will take that. That feels like a win.

It will feel less like one tomorrow when my muscles protest at being so abruptly woken back up, but take your victories where you can I always say…

Plenty of people will have spoken very eloquently and poignantly about depression in the wake of the loss of Robin Williams. I couldn’t better them if I tried.

But any time we lose someone like this – particularly someone so vibrant – it really does just smack me round the face that there but for the grace of God go I, or any of us. Whether you believe in a deity or not… this kind of thing can happen so easily to any of us. I’ve been in that hole. And I’m not stronger or braver or smarter or any better than Robin or any other soul that’s been lost to it. Just luckier.

Rest in peace, funny man. Thank you for the laughter.