In books brand review

The Metropolis of Glass by Chloe Lee | Review

A while ago, I was sent The Metropolis of Glass by Chloe Lee from the lovely people at Troubador Publishing. I have to admit that I only actually read it last week as my reading for A Levels kind of got in the way. The life of a student blogger, right?

The Metropolis of Glass is a poetry book written by Chloe Lee, a young poet I’d never heard of before. It was an easy read, there’s no doubt about that. I read it in about 3 days, although in actual time it was more like less than two hours. If you’re just getting into poetry, this may be a good place to start; it’s someone unknown (relatively, obviously now you know her name) with easy messages and relatively short (I mean, in comparison to The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, for example). I personally found Lee’s poetry a bit frustrating due to those reasons, however.

I found this poetry collection to be, I hate to say it, average at best. Nothing shocked me, no lines struck me at my core, made me think about something I’d never thought to think about before or brought me back to a certain point in my life. I found it annoying that the meanings were so blatant and didn’t initially spark much further thought. The meanings of the poems I found quite annoying as well, I mean there’s nothing necessarily better about a non-digitalised world, just saying. Many of the poems had a similar tone. This becomes increasingly obvious with each listed triad of either nouns, adjectives, verbs or adverbs (only one type of word at a time) in practically every poem. This just gets boring after a while. I can cope with that kind of listing in one poem but when it becomes the poet’s trademark I just start rolling my eyes each time I see one list.

Okay, rant over.

It was a fairly easy read so I would recommend it if you’re looking for some easy to understand poetry. If you’re looking for something more advanced and well crafted, then maybe look somewhere else. I will continue to look out for Lee’s work, probably more in the hope that I can read something that is an improvement on this (sorry Chloe Lee if you’re reading this).

If you liked this post you might like: In Cold Blood by Truman Capote | Review

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In 5 Fridays travel

5 Tips for When Your Flight is Cancelled

A few weeks ago, after a lovely holiday in Berlin, my flight back was cancelled and rescheduled to the next day. I think it’s fair to say I learned from that experience. If you’re reading this you may be in the same situation, so here are some tips that should be useful - they helped me at least.

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1. Know what you’re entitled to

My mum sent me this link almost as soon as I told her I was stranded for 24 hours. Citizens’ Advice sets out everything you’re legally entitled to varying by how long your delay is. It’s so useful, especially when you're badgering the airport staff to ensure you get everything you should. That includes food, drink, a hotel for the night and taxis to get there and back.

2. Do something you know calms you down

This is such a personal thing. One of my friends had a breakdown, yelled some Bible verses and was okay after a few minutes. Another one read us her favourite poem, which seemed oddly fitting to the situation. I’m not quite sure what I did. I probably made some jokes that weren’t funny, let’s be honest. The first thing I did was FaceTime my family, to let them know what was going on. Do whatever suits you but make sure you keep an eye on what others may be feeling, particularly people you may know to have mental health problems. Do something that will make it easier for them.

3. Keep all your receipts

You shouldn’t have to be buying the things you are. Make sure you keep any receipts so that you can claim the money back afterwards. Obviously, this doesn’t count for luxury items like alcohol or electronics, despite how much we may want it to. Keep track of everything, no matter how big or small.

4. Eat something

Particularly if you have a long delay. Make sure you eat like you normally would and don’t let the sudden change affect your physical health. In fact, eating will help you stay calm, meaning you can handle the situation in a much better way.

5. Make the most of your hotel!

You’re there for free, make use of everything you can. You’ll probably need to check out by their normal time, but that shouldn’t stop you. Have as big a breakfast as possible and stock up. When I was stuck in Berlin I took everything I could, right down to the box of tissues I the bathroom (which I have next to me on my desk) and a box of shoe cleaner which I’ll probably never use.

If you liked this post you might like: 5 (1/2) Days in Berlin

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In politics

Why You Should Support the Greens

If anyone ever asks me what the hell the Greens are even meant to be about, I always have the same response: they’re Labour, but better. Sorry to any Labour devotees out there, but I prefer my socialism with a hint of breathable oxygen, thank you very much.

The Greens are perhaps the smallest of the well-known parties, if you don’t count UKIP, but are rarely given much attention by the media – definitely when in comparison to UKIP, who seem to be featured almost constantly (but no bitterness) despite their lack of MP, which I think is not what they deserve.

The Greens are often stereotyped as a bunch of tree-hugging hippies, and I’m not going to lie, that is the kind of aesthetic that I love and my outfits reflect at times, and that means that the party isn’t really taken seriously a lot of the time. I just want to say, most Green party supports don’t fit that description and there’s a whole lot more to the Green party than the stereotypes that surround it.

The party (not in the 1984 sense, I and the Greens are not about all that government totalitarian control) are advocates for free movement and acceptance, and how an open and progressive society can have a close relationship with the environment that its people live in. They push for ways to make the UK a democracy that’s, well, more democratic. To me, giving power to the people (yes I just sang that as I wrote it) is one of the most important things there is. What’s the use of having a government if it doesn’t do as their electorate wishes?

But what is the point in a government, in the end, if it has no state to govern? That’s why we need a green approach to politics, so we have a thriving environment and living through a sustainable means, which would allow us to have a happier, healthier society – one that accepts and embraces each other’s differences and builds each other up.

But I’m just a tree-hugging hippy, so maybe that’s all tosh.

If you liked this post you might like: My Thoughts on the General Election

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In feminism

Is There Such Thing as a Perfect Feminist?

I feel like there’s a lot of pressure among activists to be the perfect activist – the perfect feminist, the perfect vegan, the perfect campaigner etc., who never puts a step wrong, only furthering their causes constantly. In reality, as much as everyone would love to be perfect at what they do, this isn’t always realistic and can be damaging to expect that of people.

I have seen many people being ripped apart on social media (Twitter, I’m looking at you) for tiny mistakes that could easily have been a slip of the tongue, a spontaneous thought, or something that may not even have come across their mind. And to me, that doesn’t seem so healthy. What’s the point in yelling (figuratively) at someone when they’ve done something wrong – the offending person will just get defensive, and then they won’t learn and no one will be better off, only perhaps worse as that person may now be put off from listening to the reasoning of anyone who calls them out. This is why we need to have a more relaxed, less shouty approach to calling people out. Through a calm debate and discussion, we can get people to understand why their comments or action were so insensitive to others, which they can then let other people know and apologise properly, rather than being forced into an apology they don’t understand. Surely that’s more beneficial to an overall cause.

My god, I would love to meet the perfect feminist. How incredible would that be? But as flawed humans, everyone will naturally be a flawed feminist. That, I think, is why the Guilty Feminist podcast is so popular. It recognises that, while we strive forwards in the name of feminism, we can’t always do everything in the way we would like to. And that’s okay – as long as we accept it when we get called out, learn from it and move on so that one day we could 

It’s okay not to be perfect, as long as you’re doing the best you can.

If you liked this post you might like: 5 Feminist Bloggers You Should Be Reading

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In Monthly Wrap Ups

July 2017 | Monthly Wrap Up

Thank you, July, for all the laughs, the friends and the hugs. No thank you for the feelings of numbness and lack of motivation.

Favourite part?

I honestly have had such an amazing month. It was kicked off by BST Hyde Park, where my family and I went to see Green Day, along with some other bands. Can I just say, Green Day are genuinely incredible live performers! I had such a good time and I would love to see them again soon.

After a long weekend off college (thank you year 11 Introductory days, you served me well), I had a lovely day at the beach with friends before returning to college for one day then heading off to Berlin with my college’s History department.

Here, we spent 6 days (one unplanned due to a flight cancellation) in Berlin, where I made friends with some incredible people. I was surrounded by intellectual, funny and beautiful women who I hope I can spend so much more time with for many years to come. I love you all so much.

I have to admit, after returning from college my mental state was a mess. I suddenly had no deadlines, no planned events for the coming days and a summer ahead of me filled with coursework and other work set by my teachers. I don’t know what ended that weekend of nothing, but I’m so glad it ended. I then had a lovely time over the next few days with friends, which left me feeling very happy.

On the day I finished college, I spent a day in town with a friend and in the evening, saw The Addams Family Musical with three other friends. It was such a great night and I loved the show so much. Because we had all been going mad on Twitter, we somehow ended up with cheap tickets courtesy of one of the cast members and seeing it for a second time a week later (with another friend the second time). It was so lovely to meet them and I cannot express how grateful I am. Somehow the show was even better second time around – well done to all the cast and crew!

Best read?

I have honestly read a lot more this month – a lot for college, but a lot nonetheless.

First of all was We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson, which I enjoyed and I thought that the main character, Mary Katherine was just unnerving!

Everywoman by Jess Phillips. I read this in two days, I could have done so in a few hours if it hadn’t been for college. I urge everyone to read this. She wrote coherently and in a way that you could really feel how much she cared and her frustration, which was really motivating and inspiring for me. Something I thought was really refreshing was the fact that she criticized her own party. She called out the misogyny that is still present there. I loved the fact that she wasn’t afraid to do that.

I had to read The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald and A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams for my English course, so I wanted to get them out of the way as soon as possible. Here’s to my probable hatred of them by next summer!

I then read The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher. As one of my idols, which I have spoken about previously, and I would urge everyone who loved her to read it. It felt very eerie as throughout the whole time I was reading it, I couldn’t help feel that Carrie knew something was going to happen to her and she needed to get some stories out as quickly as she could.

I’m currently reading GB84 by David Peace as part of my EPQ.

Favourite tunes?

I have had two musical obsessions this month: The Addams Family and Anastasia. I have always been a fan of the original Anastasia film, it is my favourite animated film, and I have had the musical soundtrack on repeat almost constantly. The new songs are incredible and I have cried a lot listening to it (but, then again, with me, that’s not surprising). I listened to the soundtrack a lot in the run up to the first viewing, but then stopped until I saw it again so I could just go in watching it with a bit more of a clean mind if that makes sense? Probably not but it’s okay.

Favourite watch?

I finished watching both Sex and the City and Brooklyn-99 this month. I love both shows so much and I am hyped for the fifth series of Brooklyn-99 later this year!

I have watched lots of films this month, from Miss Congeniality (1+2), Anastasia to Spiderman: Homecoming and Marie Antoinette.

Also, I watched most of the first series of Broadchurch in a day and wow! I really get the hype surrounding this show now.


What did I learn?

That damn I need to go to Germany and stock up on cheap alcohol. Be careful when eating German bread. Veganism is possible, even in Germany.

I need distractions and to keep moving if I’m having a bad brain day. But that’s just me.

What’s happening next month?

My family and I are going on holiday to Cornwall a week, which I am sure will be lovely. I’ve got AS results day to look forward to of course... yay.

What’s been on my mind?

My diet, a lot of the time. I’m now doing my best to be vegetarian (in a meat loving family, so I’m not a perfect veggie yet) and have significantly reduced my meat consumption. I’ve been eating vegan options wherever possible and feel like I’m finally on the road to a more ethical and environmentally-friendly lifestyle.

Favourite blogger/vlogger?

I’ve had a few this month. Laila (Tape Parade), Tara (Cattitude & Co.) and Rhianna (Rhianna Olivia, previously robowecop) have been three of my favourite blogs this month. For all of them, I’ve always wanted to click on their posts whenever I’ve seen them promoted and I’ve not been disappointed. Laila and Tara's vegan posts are incredible and Rhianna’s blogging and career posts have been so informative and helpful. Keep doing what you’re doing, ladies!

Favourite post?

My Berlin post! I always love documenting a trip, and I loved all the pictures I got from this one as well as remembering all the fun memories I gained from it.

Biggest inspiration?

Jess Phillips’ book, Everywoman. The friends I made in Berlin (and the friendships I strengthened there), who never fail to impress me, as well as all my other friends who are accomplishing such great things. I am in awe of you all.

Any other favourites?

My new stripey jumpsuit from Pull & Bear. I got in on our last official day in Berlin and I wore it on the day we were stranded (and since I’ve been back home). I am in love. If I could wear it all day, every day, I would.

If you liked this post you might like: June 2017 | Monthly Wrap Up

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