A Bus, Bon Iver and Bemusement

aka Adventures of a Tattooed Teacher…

As I write this I’m looking out the window of a bus winging its way from Heathrow Airport to Bournemouth for my second ever tattoo convention. I normally don’t do bus tripping, not because I’m precious or anything, simply because I’m a pukey passenger monster in anything with wheels or on waves. But this one seems okay so I’m taking the time to scribble away while I travel ūüôā

I think I want a camper van. Or a Winnebago type thing. Just something I can hop in, drive off and sleep in. It’s the hobo soul in me I guess. But right now I’m looking out at all these staunch middle-aged men in short-sleeved light blue shirts driving their little caravans whilst not engaging with their spouse who looks pretty much the same as their husband bar a chromosome or two. The prospect of that is not appealing. But then I realise I’m fascinated by this species. I mean, all the bank holiday drivers I’ve seen in the UK all look so bloody serious. Like it’s a chore. As if an unspoken ancient law descends upon all the dwellers of the land….

“…That on a Holiday of Bank if ye be of relatively sound mind and body, between the ages of 45 – 75, moderately tolerable of and to your spouse, own at least 3 of the bluest or beige short-sleeved shirts in the land, aquire ye a nondescript black vehicle of 2 litres or more and set forth. Attach ye a home that is mobile to its rear and embark ye on perilous journeys across roads that begin with the letter ‘M’ and end in a number, listen ye to compact discs adorned with vocals of Andrea Bocelli or Katherine Jenkins and avoid all eye contact with your spouse. May no joy or visible expressions of happiness cross your faces until ye reach a destination that almost exactly resembles the place you left..except with more sand and water..(maybe not even).’

Fun times. I think I’ll stick to the National Express, where I can write about the people we pass on the motorway while Bon Iver serenades me and the sun shines in through the window over the gorgeous English countryside.

I still want a camper van though…

Why Carrie Bradshaw is a disgrace..

"What can I change today to fit the man I'm sleeping with in this episode??"

I used to love Sex and the City. It was a great way to shut off the brain and indulge in a glorified fashion show with women living the life an insignificant percentage of people actually live. The shoes, the outfits, the hair..all very nice at some point. But as time went on and I got on with my life, it would come to disappear from my life. But then every channel under the sun started running it and re-running it every night, with different series on each channel so if you weren’t up on the goings-on of Ms. Bradshaw and Co. then all it looked like was desperate very well-dressed women apparently past their sell-by date looking for a man. But that’s not why I’m ranting.

As a lot of my thinking goes on at night, and therefore all my college work gets done then too, I found myself leaving the TV on in the background as I got stuck into whatever mountain of work had been bestowed on me. And that show was usually what I would leave on, more often than not because i had already seen the episode, and mostly because it didn’t demand anything of me as a viewer. Then I started looking at it with a critical eye. Granted, I should have been using my critical eye to elevate my English Lit essay to an ‘A’ standard, but the past is the past. I saw something very disconcerting in Carrie. As I saw the different episodes from the various series, I began to see a timeline of her disintegration as a confident secure woman.

If I was to do a PhD on women and their portrayal in film and TV, she would be my prime example of a weak woman. I’ve watched her change her personality and her fashion to suit every guy she’s ever been interested in, from uptown and city chic with Big, to gingham crop shirts and pigtails with Aidan (whom she should REALLY be with but that’s cos I love him!). However, you can forgive that. I mean, we’ve all made slight modifications to our outer selves and inner musings when courting potential sweethearts, it’s a psychological drive we have to establish an affinity with that person and help us bond. I include both sexes in that.

It wasn’t until I watched the movie that it really hit me just how spineless the character of Carrie really was. She started out being a woman who had always wanted the wedding of her dreams with the man of her dreams wearing the dress of her dreams. She eventually settled for a courthouse marriage with about 10 guests and wearing a pants suit, getting married to the same man who dumped her in front of New York society and all her friends, leaving her in a designer dress-shaped heap on the steps of the hotel cradling what was left of her sanity. And we were led to believe this was her happy fairytale ending. Cheers.

Now before you get all riled up, I’m not for one minute knocking small weddings. The idea of a big wedding makes me want to create a J-Ro shaped hole in the wall frankly, so that’s not an issue. What I took exception to was how Carrie did a complete 180 degree flip on who she was just to snare her man. This was Mr. Big, who has known her for 10 years, and couldn’t have been ignorant of the fact that fashion and all its trimmings were a huge part of Carrie’s life. This was never going to be a small intimate affair by anyone’s standards. He knew this before the question was even popped. He knew before they moved in. He knew before he ever went to Paris on that big gesture of being her knight in shining armour to rescue her from The Russian. So what gives?

Fair enough, he bowed out in the most chicken shit way possible. That’s not what annoys me. What annoys me is her decision to go sailing right back into his arms without an iota of compromise. She threw all her dreams out the window just to get the ring on her finger. A big wedding, while not the most appealing to me, or very many others, was what she wanted and reflected her personality and who she was. And her settling for the small nuptials and discreet classy trouser suit outfit, while a gorgeous idea for some, just wasn’t what we as viewers were led to believe Carrie Bradshaw stood for. She gave it all away just to get married. And that annoys the crap out of me.

Roll on SATC 2…let’s see what kind of a doormat Carrie will strap to her back this time..

You couldn’t make it up…

I set this up ages ago and was all excited at the prospect of jotting down my musings for all the world to see (optimistic I know) and was all set to go when..nothing. Total writer’s block. Where do I start? What’s my main theme? Do I have a purpose for writing? Gah!! I don’t know if this is true for other writers but I used to narrate the everyday goings-on in my life blog-style in my head, but then when I sat down and faced the screen, all my ideas would vanish. It was, as a friend once put it, like trying to herd balloons.

I had the material but not the motivation. I was worried I had spread myself too thin; between my ramblings on Twitter and Facebook blocking up my friends’ feeds and my little bit of fiction I wrote on the side for nobody in particular, I hadn’t fully nailed down a reason to offer my two cents into the blogging world. I have an online journal which I occasionally rant on, but I felt this could be more of a forum for discussion on various issues that affect my life and doubtless many many others.

It’s quite funny really. My friends and family always go on about how much I live online, and here I go and set up another window for me to shout out of! However in the long term, they’ll thank me for it. I can keep my Facebook stuff on the light entertainment side, and I can write away to my heart’s content here and if people want to read it, it’s here for their delight and wonderment.

And while I’ve been bemoaning my plight about not having an angle to write from, I took a step back and looked at my life…and you couldn’t make it up. I live at home with my Mom who has recently become totally deaf, and not just ‘if we shout she’ll catch a word or two’. I mean deaf. And that has been quite a life change for both of us. I could write for years about that alone…

I’m also two-thirds of the way through a degree in Primary Education having decided to go back and conquer Third-Level at age 30. It’s awesome but I think sometimes they’re trying to eliminate some of us through ‘survival of the fittest’ tactics. Apparently there’s no limit as to how much work you can do in one day.. :-/

In addition to this I’m also a musician and singer and I write songs. I wouldn’t say I’m a typical singer-songwriter, as to me that conjures up images of folky types, which I listen to non-stop, but unfortunately lack the depth and meaning they infuse in their songs. I’m not knocking my own work, I just know what I’m not!

Being a musician/artist is hard enough, but being a female one is definitely harder. I definitely notice a difference in how I am treated compared to my male muso counterparts…but not all differences are to be condemned..I believe we ARE different, but we are equal in terms of respect earned. For instance, I wouldn’t lift a P.A. just to prove men and women are equal…I’m four foot ten, not an extra from Avatar.

Looking at this and also realising how much else is in my head reassures me that I’ll never be short of things to write about anyway!

Off to eat some manky-gorgeous takeaway food now.

Later alligators..

I guess THIS is the real world now..

So here I am, the big three-one…I think I’m running about 10 years behind schedule, but I’m the only one keeping track so who cares?? I’ve given up the “day job” and now study Primary Teaching, which is one of very few professions which might give me a chance to be taller than people. I also try and write something every day even if it sucks..one man’s poison¬†and all that…¬†Can be a bit of a head wreck though. I love my friends and can’t live without them, they are my Ben and Jerry’s after the heavy meal of my family…but¬†I love them too..for the most part.

I’m a singer, and a songwriter..so check out my Myspace and have a listen.. www.myspace.com/jennyronan I’m rather good, if you like that sort of thing.. ūüėõ

I¬†am small but have the temper of an East End London bouncer who was never breast fed or hugged as a baby. I have high expectations of everything¬†I do but unfortunately¬†I lack the patience to wait it out and see if things work.. I have zero tolerance for things that do not work..they are made to do a specific task and if they don’t then it’s wall hitting time.

I narrate most everything that goes on in my life…kind of like that movie ‘Stranger Than Fiction’ but it’s my own voice that I hear…I’d love to be in a Wes Anderson or Kevin Smith movie…I’d love to write the theme song for a Hollywood blockbuster…I want to see Sinatra live in Vegas but I’m a bit late for that…I want to write a book…no wait, lots of books…some ficton, some not…I have so much to say but so little time to say it…I have this long running feeling that I’m late..for what, I¬†don’t know..

I¬†like simple things like watching late night tv while faffinf about on-line talking to strangers..I like watching Gone With The Wind by myself and pretending I’m Scarlett O Hara…I like finding old books¬†I used to read inside out in my childhood and then sitting in a big chair with the tv off and reading them again as¬†I laugh at what I used to think was cool…

I¬†like sketching out ideas for my next tattoo….I like playing with the notion of getting another piercing..or re-doing old ones…I like listening to cheesy¬†R n’¬†B while¬†I de-clutter my house..

I¬†like watching Tommy Tiernan’s Live dvd and saying it word for word…or crying to Jeff Buckley’s “Lover You Should Have Come Over” for no other reason than it’s that kind of song..

I¬†like planning my next haircut or wondering what in the blue hell I’m gonna wear to all the weddings that are springing up on me…I don’t like sleeping in late on weekdays, it makes me feel like one of those unemployed moochers…I do work,¬†I swear.. just not in the ‘normal’ sense…emmm…

I like Tayto cheese and onion sandwhiches and a cup of tea, even though I¬†can’t eat dairy..funny¬†I know..I like pizza without cheese and desserts without cream…I have a pathological fear of ice lolly sticks and won’t eat ice creams that have them, it’s cornettos all the way for me…I can’t stand it when people open crisp bags upside down or when they rub their eyebrows the wrong way…but other than all of this i’m a walk in the park.

Welcome to my blog…stay, have a cup of tea, have a read, have a laugh..don’t report me to the authorities though. Not yet…

Enjoy x