You Know What Sh!ts Me?: Not Everything is “Glamorising”

This will all make sense by the end of this article.

It seems that nowadays one can’t do anything in the spotlight without someone having something negative to say about it. Kim Kardashian, for example – as much as I personally dislike her – cannot blink without someone attacking her on social media, calling her a range of insults from “fat” to “blimp-like hussy”. The unfortunate truth for a celebrity is that while they are relevant, they will always be attacked no matter what.

More recently, however, it seems that there are more and more complaints coming from individuals that seem to have absolutely no social or work life at all. These are the ones that criticise any movie, TV show, book or any other creative work for “glamorising” a bad issue.

Glamorising DVD covers since 2003. (SOURCE: Anna's Flickr photostream)

Glamorising DVD covers since 2003. (SOURCE: Anna’s Flickr photostream)

One of my recent favourite TV shows (that was criminally cut short) is Secret Diary of a Call Girl, featuring Billie Piper *COUGH* Rose Tyler *COUGH* as the main character, Hannah Baxter/Belle du Jour as an escort. It features her daily and nightly shenanigans as Hannah by day and Belle by night. Regardless, it is one hell of an entertaining show and one which I successfully referred to a friend who also loved the series.

What did the critics have to say about this? “Glamorising being a prostitute”.

Um. No.

Actually it is just showing the life of an escort in a witty and entertaining way… based on the real life of a real escort who kept her identity hidden from the world for so long probably for this very reason. A feminist who wrote for the Daily Mail stated that she couldn’t imagine that any escort would enter the profession out of free choice. Well, actually, I can; people were born and raised differently and are therefore very different from one another. While one enjoys having sex and getting paid for it, the other is equally content saving herself until marriage. And there is nothing wrong with either of them. Hello, if you wanted an example of “people being very different from one another”, just watch the show and you will see that some people even enjoy roleplaying as babies while someone else takes care of them as their parent/guardian.

Secret Diary of a Call Girl isn’t the only show to face this pointless, unnecessary fire from bored critics.

Breaking Bad? Glamorising meth.

Dexter? Glamorising serial killing.

Prisonbreak? Glamorising committing a crime and then breaking out of jail.

Fifty Shades of Grey? Glamorising rough S&M.

Stan by Eminem? Glamorising being a psycho-stalker fan and committing suicide.

A friend of mine, who was a big follower of the Breaking Bad TV series, clearly stated that if you properly watched the show, it would turn you off from doing meth. Oh really? And if not made apparent by the highly anti-climatic ending of Dexter, the show did not glamorise serial killing one bit. Just look at how royally fucked his life was because of his choice in alternative hobby.

To those people who think that every creative work has some ulterior motive to ruin today’s generation: buy some Kleenex or build a bridge.

Hell, you might as well say that Doctor Who is glamorising picking up your whole life and leaving with a mad man and his blue box, or that Pokemon is glamorising leaving your family at a young age to explore the world with creatures that speak their name.

This whole pointless glamorising has gotten on my last nerve.

My advice? Watch that TV series and enjoy it. Sit through that movie and enjoy it. Read that book and enjoy it. Listen to that album and enjoy it. But leave it at that. The artists in the world who put their blood, sweat and tears in these works are wasting their time if people are just going to complain and create problems that aren’t even there.

There. I said it.

– by The Black Widow

You Know What Sh!ts Me?: People Getting Ready on Public Transport

I hate taking public transport. It’s already bad enough that I have to deal with the system’s terrible schedule, the dirtiness of the vehicles, and the fact that carriages are never at a comfortable temperature – but God, if there’s one thing that’s worse than all of this, it’s the people who take public transport, more specifically, those commuters in the morning.

Alright, so not everyone’s a morning person – granted, it’s probably safe to say a good 80% of us just hate mornings – and being grumpy in the morning is simply an uncontrollable side effect. That’s fine. I can handle grumpiness. But what I can’t handle is the fact some people think it is in within their social right to get ready on public transport.

It is not.

This is how it SHOULD be done. (SOURCE: Reginaldo Andrade's Flickr photostream)

This is how it SHOULD be done. (SOURCE: Reginaldo Andrade’s Flickr photostream)

The train, bus, ferry, light rail, or may I dare to say, the footpath, is not the place for you to get your morning shit together. I’m sorry, but I was under the impression you shouldn’t leave the house until you were ready for the day, or was that just me? Because judging from the number of women I’ve seen putting on an entire face of make-up on public transport alone, I feel like I’ve missed the memo.

Come on, girls. Is public transport really a good place to wave your mascara wand around? I mean it’s a skill to be able to apply make up on a moving platform, I give you that, but it is not a tip endorsed by make up professionals. I believe the correct and preferred way is still on an immovable seat in front of a large mirror. Do you really want other people to know how image obsessed you are, even if you never see them again in your life? That’s no way to give off that effortless beauty look you’re going for. Plus, I would prefer if none of your powder blush landed on my jeans.

I would also prefer if I didn’t have to deal with your dripping hair on my book/newspaper/phone. Or even just watching dripping water fall from your head down your neck onto your back. It’s strangely icky. I know you’re probably clean, assuming your hair is wet because you took a shower rather than taking a quick dip in that puddle outside your house before jumping onboard public transport, but I don’t have to consciously know that you got naked in the morning and scrubbed yourself clean. Icky. And the fact is, I’m seeing more and more people who I can tell have taken showers in the morning. It’s troubling, because the question is, when will we draw the line? Because I am going to be pretty upset if people start taking showers on their morning commute, especially if you’re one of those people who takes a little wee in the shower. Really upset.

And then there’s the issue of breakfast. If you have to eat, or want to eat, I suggest getting up a little earlier because it is just rude to be having your morning meal on public transport, especially if you’re not going to offer it to the person next to you. I am able to deal with coffee or other hot drinks, but not your toast or boiled eggs (oh yes, I’ve seen someone peel eggs on the train). Not only is there a problem of the smell of hot food, which lingers after you’ve long finished it or long gone by the way, there’s also the issue of you sitting on the aisle eating your food and the problem of me having to get over you to get off at my stop. It’s an awkward moment that simply shouldn’t exist, and wouldn’t if you would have have your damn breakfast at home like a normal person.

It’s not a lot to ask, but it would be a whole lot easier if you could actually be ready when you’re ‘ready’ to leave the house. But it seems everyone is getting ready on their morning commute in one way or another. No one is ever ready anymore. Have I been handling myself in public wrong all these years? Should I cut my morning routine by half, so that you can share the remainder with me as I struggle to pick my outfit on a moving vehicle on the train to work/uni/out for that day? Please tell me. I don’t want to look like a put-together morning idiot.

– by Nicole Lam

You Know What Sh!ts Me?: Society Hates Sick People

I write this from my bed, a bed that has become refuge for the last week or so. Half-drunk tea cups and soup bowls accumulate high in the surrounding area, protected by a fence of snotty tissues and Soothers wrappers. And as if this wasn’t bad enough, this hell of chilling and scolding fever, I have to prove to the people around me that I’m legitimately on the brink of death.

spongebob-spongebob-squarepants-36915467-488-360

People get sick, quite often I might add. As far as medicine has come in our existence there is still no cure for the common cold or for the viruses that have caused my tonsillitis. I do not blame the medical or scientific community for this. There are some crappy things that just become part of life and having the flu a couple times a year is one of them. However, society itself does not tolerate this common human affliction.

Why is it that just because I have an assignment due for uni today (which I have completed) and work tomorrow morning that I still feel this guilt for not being able to make it to either of these places? For example, the e-mail I sent to my tutor this morning was a mess of sorrys and reassurances that I will give him a medical certificate. If I am sick, the first priority should be that I get better, not that I have to prove my degree of sickness, but somehow this makes sense: if I’m too sick to leave the house and hand in work at university then I should somehow not be too sick to leave the house to go to the doctors and get a certificate.

I can’t call my boss and simply tell her I can’t come in because I’m sick; instead, I end up saying something along the lines of: “I’m so so so so sorry, I could maybe come in for a couple of hours,” but in my head I’m thinking: “What? I’m sick, I need rest, why am I saying these things?”

I understand that being sick inconveniences a lot of people; my boss will have to find somebody else to work and my tutor will have to wait to grade my assessment, but if we all know that this happens to everyone quite regularly than there should be allowances and backup plans made. Above all we shouldn’t be made to feel this insane guilt when we’re already feeling intense sickness.

I should mention that I’m really jaded about this topic because at one time in my life being sick nearly cost me my job. I worked at a cafe for a while, and after being there for about a month the boss gave me a raise for my hard work. At this point the boss seemed awesome. A couple months later I get sick and call him to say so, which he then replies with ‘That’s okay, you should come in anyway.’ So I do, and for that week I work as hard as I can, when I only have about 60% of my usual energy and 189% of the mucus. At the end of the week he tells me that he is thinking of firing me because I had been ‘slacking off at work even after I was given a raise.’

A lot of questions arise from this one incident, but the main one for me was: what happened in this man’s life to make him think that making a sick person work would be okay? The answer, I have to assume, is the world we live in. A world where there must be billions of people sick at this very second but they are all being treated like a horse with a broken hoof.

I know this seems like a really big ‘what grinds my gears’ article, but I am very seriously curious to know if anyone feels the same. I understand that these practices are put in place for the whole of society to be more efficient, but on a personal level it seems like such a sacrifice.

 by Josefina Huq

You Know What Sh!ts Me?: Facebook Laundromats

You know what really shits me?

Today’s topic: Facebook laundromats… in other words, people who constantly put their dirty laundry on Facebook.

When Facebook politely asks you in that little clever box at the top of your newsfeed “What’s on your mind?”, they don’t really want to know what’s on your mind. It is not an invitation to delve deep into your inner psyche and let it all out for the whole world and their pets to find out.

No one cares about your dirty laundry. Not this chick. She's reading a book. (SOURCE: Gideon's Flickr photostream)

No one cares about your dirty laundry. Not this chick. She’s reading a book. (SOURCE: Gideon’s Flickr photostream)

Some people have trouble differentiating between what is appropriate to post on Facebook and what isn’t appropriate… and uploading a status talking about how your boyfriend left you and you wish nothing but death upon him is actually very inappropriate. But who cares? Whatever works, right?

WRONG.

What you are doing is creating unnecessary drama by putting your personal problems out there for everyone to see. What you are doing is giving people more ammunition to use against you in case the opportunity ever arise. What you are doing is making a complete fool of yourself by turning to social media for sympathy when your best friend is just a simple phone call away.

My philosophy on this is simple: if you are my friend, I care about you. If you have a problem, I will do my best to help you with your problem. If you post this problem on Facebook and expect sympathy from me, stop wasting your time because zero fucks are given about your issue when you’re waving it around on social media.

You know the saying (however it goes)… “people don’t care about your problems, they just want to know what’s going on.” It applies to this very case. What you may think is a very cryptic status could very well paint a larger picture than you intended. “Feels alone :(” could easily translate into “My girlfriend won’t spend time with me because I’m an arsehole and now I regret it.” Your attempt at being incognito failed. Maybe you would have been better off not saying anything at all, huh?

What shits me even more is when these people who air their dirty laundry for the world to see are confused as to why people think it’s okay to involve themselves into their drama. I don’t know, whose fault is it – the idiot who made it publicly viewable for everyone to see and therefore have an opinion on, or Barney the dinosaurs? Definitely not Barney. If you don’t want people to involve themselves in your personal drama, DON’T INVOLVE THEM BY PUTTING IT ON SOCIAL MEDIA. It’s really quite simple, actually.

If you have problems like I’m sure everyone does, seek out help personally. Even if we live in the digital age, driving to your mate’s place or calling your mum late at night to help you has not gone out of fashion. In fact, I’m sue you could resolve a problem easier that way than asking however many Facebook friends you have for advice because they won’t care… they’ll just want to know what’s going on.

So, everyone on Facebook, I have five words for you that should have a long-lasting effect on you: think about what you post.

– by The Black Widow