Woke Feminism is Toxic Feminism!

The definition of ‘woke feminism’ is a hard one to explain.

I watched a few videos on YouTube talking about feminism and how it is growing increasingly toxic, one of which I took a lot of points from in this post called Everything Wrong with Woke Culture so check that out and do your own research and reading. 🙂

 

In recent years, there has been a rise in female empowerment in media, whether that be in film, tv shows, books, etc. But that’s not necessarily true…

Bad-ass, empowering, strong and brave women have been in the media for ages. Not as much as we would like but they have been there. These include characters such as Katniss, Black Widow, Mulan (cartoon), The Bride, Ellen Ripley (Alien), Trinity (The Matrix). However, in recent years, there has been a rise in many woman-led main roles, such as Captain Marvel, Ocean’s 8, Wonder Woman, Charlie’s Angels, Birds of Prey, etc. Although I do like a lot of these films, there is a serious issue within most of them regarding ‘woke feminism’.

 

These characters are designed to be powerful, strong warrior like people, but can also be very arrogant and act very entitled and toxic. There isn’t much growth and learning within these characters, too, displaying that women are born skilled and strong and invincible whereas, in real life, that’s definitely not true. We are raised and we grow to be strong and talented and skilled and brave, we aren’t handed that at birth.

But, Shay, they’re just films, not real life!

With my own experiences as evidence, I have always yearned for representation of women and women of colour in the media because as a young girl, growing and vulnerable to insecurities in this society, I needed someone to look up to and use as a tool to encourage myself to be confident in who I am. I think representation of women, of all backgrounds, colours, sexualities, etc, are important, for the reason being that young girls need that! That being said, we need representation of real women. That’s the whole point of this ‘rise in female roles’; it’s to increase representation. But their representations are wrong with this perception women do not need growth and do not need to work hard to earn their skills and rewards. Growth is important! And so is learning.

 

Something I find common in bad portrayals of women is that they can be very arrogant and entitled. How are these traits going to benefit younger girls and even older women in any way? We are not entitled just because we are women. Just because we’re women and demand equality and want to break down the patriarchy does not mean that we should be fed success instantly without working for it or having any reason to earn it. Teaching girls that they are entitled to anything and everything is toxic. There’s a contrast between the old cartoon Mulan and the new live-action Mulan. Old Mulan started off as this girl, who was a little anxious and had empathy and compassion but still strong and built up her confidence and bravery throughout the film whereas this new Mulan starts off straight away as incredibly strong and skilled. Very realistic. This is the same case with Captain Marvel, who barely worked to get where she was and was emotionless and kind of boring.  Yes, they are strong and brave but they’re boring, unrelatable and unrealistic because they’re so superficial and shallow. And it has nothing to do with them being women dominating the screen because Wonder Woman does it well and was a good film with an amazing female character! In general, using the excuse ‘I am a woman’ to explain why a character is so strong or basing her whole personality and motives on the fact she is a woman, or using society as the villain is tiresome. It’s great to hear the encouragement that ‘women can do anything’ since it’s so inspiring but that doesn’t mean we can do EVERYTHING. This can create a negative effect on younger girls and other women. Sometimes this can be done well, but done badly, it just takes us ten steps back in feminism.

 

The women written nowadays aren’t written as if they’re people, they’re written as an agenda to bring down men. That is not feminism. Feminism is not taking down men to lift ourselves up. We demand equality not world domination.  In fact, it’s almost insulting to women watching, seeing that these female characters are only elevated by belittling men as if that’s the only way a female led film can do well. For example, Vice Admiral Amilyn Holdo in The Last Jedi is so condescending and hateful towards men and I understand that there was a need to display her as a strong woman with high power but that’s no reason to bring down a man. He just wanted to help. There is no superior gender, but these movies are making it out to force that. Hermione Granger is another example. The books describe a very dynamic, 3D version of Hermione, who is intelligent, strong but also loving and relies on her friends and is relatable whereas movie Hermione is very perfect and way better than her male peers, and although I still like movie Hermione, I can admit she was hard to connect and relate to.

Yes, there’s nothing wrong with having male villains; sometimes in real life, men are obstacles for women. But these ‘woke feminist’ female characters and movies are so obsessed with trying to take down men as a whole.

 

And when these films with poor female leads don’t do well, or people don’t like them, it’s because they’re sexist. No. If a film is bad, that film is bad. There are so many films with amazing women in that do well, so sexism is not an excuse. I have found that a lot of people find some female characters to be cringey when if a male doing the same thing wouldn’t be and that is sexism and discriminatory but if a character is cringey, arrogant, 2D, entitled, unrealistic and boring, regardless of their gender, that’s a problem with their production and writing not with sexism.

Take Mulan, for example. Why did the cartoon version do so much better than the live action one? Same concept of the character but different execution.

Of course, if an important part of the character for the sake of the story is arrogance and entitlement, etc, then fine, but we want confidence not arrogance and hard work and growth not entitlement. We need dynamic and different characters, not the same superficial archetype every bad-ass female movie has. WE WANT QUALITY NOT JUST “FEMINISM”!

 

I am grateful we have moved far from the ‘damsel in distress’ type ladies like old Disney princesses and the ‘fixer upper’ girls like Laney in She’s All That and Allison in The Breakfast Club but we might be going a bit far off course. Feminism is steering into a bad direction and it’s feeding into the stigma around it. I know SO MANY people, who do not consider themselves feminists or who judge me for claiming to be one, and I believe it’s because of this woke feminism. Woke feminism is related to elite feminism, where people believe that women are superior. In particular cis-gendered women too. NO! NO ONE IS SUPERIOR!

The feminist message these toxic portrayals are delivering aren’t going to be listened to. It is spreading the wrong message and creating more toxicity and stigma.

We need better female portrayals!

 

Do you agree?

-Shay

The Hustler Blogger Award!

The Hustler Blogger Award was created by Mark Anthony (go check out his blog RIGHT NOW I DEMAND YOU!) The reason he called it “Hustler Blogger Award” is because “I aim to give it to virtual space users out there who really keeps pushing not just for self-progress, but also to inspire other people through their website content”.

 

 

 

The Rules

  1. Make sure the award banner (above) is in the award post!
  2. Be sure to give Mark Anthony (markanthonyswall.wordpress.com) pingback on your post, so he will be able to read them.
  3. Nominate bloggers (more than five!)
  4. Answer these questions :
    ° Why did you start a blog?° What/who inspired you to do it?° What motivates you to keep pushing and creating content and make your site alive?° Who are your fave bloggers? And how do they urge you to grow as well?

    ° What lesson/s have you learned through your experience?

    ° Has blogging brought an impact to you as a person? If yes, what are these?

    ° Not everyone is confident enough to start a blog. What advice can you give ’em?

    ° Give 3 facts about you as a blogger (strengths or flaws)

    ° Drop down your blog post which you are most proud of (together with the link so we can read it)

 

 

 

The Questions

Why did you start a blog?

I started my blog out of pure boredom on a January evening in 2015. I HATE the beginning of the years (I don’t now as much) so I wanted to start something exciting that I could get passionate about so I wouldn’t feel bored and down. And so I created this blog 🙂 I also wanted it to be a place I could write out my thoughts and possibly help someone who was like me.

 

What/who inspired you to do it?

As much as I cringe to say it, I had just finished Girl Online by Zoella and thought that creating a blog would be a fun thing to do to help me through my own struggles.

 

What motivates you to keep pushing and creating content and make your site alive?

I’m not going to lie, motivation to keep this blog running is quite difficult for me. I like doing it because it’s a place for me to express my own opinions and articulate myself, as well as a place where I can write, which I love to do. If anything motivates me at all, it’s the fact that I can spread awareness and my thoughts on certain topics and also possibly helping people.

 

Who are your fave bloggers? And how do they urge you to grow as well?

I’ve had so many favourite bloggers over the years, ones who I have become friends with too! Having friends to blog with is encouraging and helps me to grow because it pushes me to put out better content like them. Some of these people include Elm, who I used to blog with AGES ago, Josh Gross, who has been a massive support on this blog, Mia (who used to be known as Crystals and Curls), who creates amazing content that motivates me. There’s loads more!

 

What lesson/s have you learned through your experience?

The main lesson I think is REREAD WHAT I WROTE! I used to make SOOOOOO many spelling, grammar, punctuation mistakes in my posts so I have learnt to reread and reread my work! Apart from that, I have learnt a lot about the things I write about too since they require research! This blog has made me way smarter than I used to be. I feel a lot more knowledgeable about certain things and less ignorant.

 

Has blogging brought an impact to you as a person? If yes, what are these?

As I said, it’s made me less ignorant. I have done a lot of research about different things like racism and sexism and mental health and that has changed me as a person and changed my perspective and opinions. I’m so glad that this blog has done that because it has also made me feel like a better person! It has also improved my writing skills! 🙂

 

Not everyone is confident enough to start a blog. What advice can you give them?

I would say just give it a go! Try it out for three months and if you decide it’s not for you, then you can just delete it. It’s nerve racking sharing yourself online like that, I understand, because I have been there, but you will soon get used to it and comfortable with it and it creates a therapeutic escape I think! Like everything in life, give it a chance. Don’t pressure yourself into obtaining 100 followers by a month, or posting everyday, etc. Blogging is a lot more than just about the numbers!

 

Give 3 facts about you as a blogger (strengths or flaws)

  • I would say I’m quite dedicated to my posts. I will do a lot of research about something I am writing about such as my previous post about Death Celebrations, etc. I enjoy researching too because it means I learn a lot from it.
  • My motivation fluctuates. Sometimes I will post loads and sometimes I’ll take months away from blogging because I’m not motivated or I’m busy with other things like Uni and work. I’m trying to get better at that though! 😅
  • I LOVE reading other people’s posts and engaging with other people in the blogosphere. I always love finding new blogs too! If there are any cool bloggers you know, please link them in the comments.

 

Drop down your blog post which you are most proud of (together with the link so we can read it)

This is super hard because I’m not really sure which one I am most proud of. I’m usually a very self critical person about things I create but with this blog, I am surprisingly proud of a lot of it. Dark Skin is one I am proud of because it was the first time, on this blog, I talked about my insecurities with my skin colour and I felt proud that I reached a point where I could openly talk about it and not just that, use it as a way to discuss white privilege and problems with racism and my own experiences. It definitely could have been written better but it was a while ago and it was the start of me discussing racism and the media on this blog, which is very important to me.

 

 

 

My Nominees

Mark Anthony – even though you created this award, you deserve to be nominated to do it yourself 🙂

Happy Panda

Reindeershermaine

Crystal

Arabella Says So

Yeo Ye Hang

 

Thank you again, Mark, for the nomination. I can’t wait to see other people’s posts on this! Please make sure to link me or notify me so I can read them!

 

-Shay

Can Positivity Be Toxic?

Can positivity get toxic, really?

YES!

 

Positivity is great and all but toxic positivity ignores the fact that a person is suffering. It is saying “be positive, be grateful, other people have it worse” when someone is in pain. It says to pretend to be okay when someone clearly isn’t. It masks the problem.

You’ll get over it!

Look on the bright side!

It could be worse!

Everything happens for a reason!

Just keep smiling!

Stop being so negative!

These are some examples, out of many, of toxic positivity. And I’m sure you have used one of these phrases, or something like it, before. I for sure have. Saying it to yourself might help to cheer you up but saying it to another person can be harmful. It can even be harmful to you if you’re burying your problem. An analogy I used to explain this was like taking painkillers for a malignant tumour that’s causing pain without actually dealing with the tumour; it’s only going to get worse.

 

I have been at fault of toxic positivity multiple times, like many people, maybe even on this blog, because as a society, we don’t address mental health well. We weren’t really taught how to encounter mental health issues in a proper way and we’re told be happy, be positive constantly. But it needs to stop.

 

I either read about this or heard it in a podcast, but I came to understand negative emotions aren’t bad. Anger isn’t bad. Envy isn’t bad. Sadness isn’t bad. We divide emotions up into good and bad; happiness is good, sadness is bad; we’re taught to suppress and avoid the bad ones. But we have the ability to experience these emotions for a reason! They’re not there for no reason! Toxic positivity sees these emotions as bad. In fact, personally, I believe no emotion is bad at all. We need to embrace them and channel them in a healthy way. A clinical psychologist, Dr Jaime Zuckerman, says, “Avoidance or suppression of emotional discomfort leads to increased anxiety, depression, and overall worsening of mental health.”

 

So how do we be non-toxic positive?

  1. Address your raw, real emotions. Don’t bury it. Don’t try and find a way to be happy without actually dealing with your anger or frustration or stress or sadness. If you’re feeling stressed about a workload, make a schedule and divide your work up into smaller pieces making it seem less stressful or daunting, for example. Or if you’re feeling sad or angry from a conflict with someone, talk to that person face to face or through text or a letter, etc, whatever you feel comfortable with. Brainstorm a solution to the problem you’re having – the solution could be simple or complex, getting someone to help you might be useful too.
  2. Find a way to cope with it inside of faking a smile and saying “be positive”! This could be through:
    -Listening to music
    -Channelling through art (painting, writing, playing an instrument, etc)
    -Meditating, yoga and breathing exercises (the one to the right has helped me before)
    -Vent in a journal
    -Dance it out! Or even just do a workout
    -Go outside on a walk or somewhere nice and calm
    -Watch a film in which you can relate to so you don’t feel alone or find comfort
    -Talk to someone about how you’re feeling
  3. Don’t shame other people’s negative emotions. Everybody experiences emotions like anger, stress, sadness, frustration, etc; it’s a very normal thing. We shouldn’t look down on people experiencing these emotions and judging them or shaming them will only make it worse for them! Instead, change your perspective on emotions and understand that it’s a normal human reaction and behaviour, helping us to tackle our everyday lives and problems.
  4. Step away from social media. Social media is a breeding ground for toxic positivity where it’s spread by people, who aren’t really aware that it is toxic. Taking a break from it could be beneficial to you and make you feel a bit free and more in control of your emotions instead of being fed quotes and posts that won’t help you.
  5. Spread awareness about toxic-positivity! Point out toxic positivity to people and correct them for it. I’ve put a table of correct things to say in place of toxic positivity below to make it clearer what is right and wrong. Non-toxic positivity accepts a person’s emotions and suffering instead of just trying to move past it and ignoring it.

Alternate phrases to avoid toxic positivity #CoolGuide | Mental and emotional health, Emotional health, Positivity

I hope this helped to make you familiar with what toxic positivity is and why it is bad.

 

-Shay

100 Days Of Rejection Challenge?

Zoey 101 rejected - TV Fanatic

The 100 Days Rejection Challenge is a challenge in which you basically seek out rejection for 100 days! And this means REJECTION! You have to sought out situations which could likely result in  rejection such as asking a stranger for £100 or asking for a free room at a hotel.

The creator of this challenge is Jia Jiang, who gave a TedTalk about it. His goal was to desensitise himself from the pain of rejection and overcome fear.

 

At first, it sounded very silly and kind of scary to me but upon further thought, I actually think it’s brilliant. So many people fear rejection, to the point where they won’t put themselves in any situations that could potentially result in rejection like telling someone you like them or going for a job opportunity.

I, personally, don’t really fear rejection, but nonetheless, this challenge will 100% build confidence and install a warrior within you because 100 days of rejection makes a person resilient and fearless.

 

Of course, 100 days is a lot and starting from avoiding rejection to going 100 days with rejection is a big leap so even if you can’t manage the full 100 days, don’t be afraid to face rejection in you day to day life. You have nothing to lose. You only have one life and you’ll have regrets if you don’t take opportunities or take control of your own life. Take rejection one step at a time.

 

Take this post as a sign to apply for that job or ask someone out or do whatever it is you’re fearing because of rejection. Just give it a go, for me. 🥺

 

“Sometimes rejection in life is redirection.”

-Shay

Death Celebrations!

Death is a strange topic because it sounds scary but it’s inevitable and universal. The thing every single one of us have in common is death (and the fact we’re alive, duh!). But we’re all going to experience death one day, unless somehow science manages to make us immortal. But is immortality even a blessing?

 

Death is something people fear, leading to existential crises and worrying about every move but really, death is kind of a blessing. Without death, what would we even be doing? Life wouldn’t be exciting and adventurous. We wouldn’t have bucket lists, which encourage us to live our lives to the fullest.

 

Because of this fear we have of death, it has become this taboo topic, we avoid speaking about. But we have to speak about it more. Especially with children. Most people seriously underestimate children and how much information and big topics they can process but it’s the prime time to bring them to familiarisation with these big topics whether that be mental health, climate change, racism and sexism and of course, death. They can handle a lot more than you think.

Discussing death with children can make it seem less scary, supporting them. It can be a scary and confusing thing and it enables children to ask questions. Kids are curious by nature and allowing them to better understand topics like this means they can explore it and question it in their own way instead of being confronted with it head on when someone dies later on in their life.

When I was younger, I went to a lot of funerals; being in a big family, there were a lot of deaths. At first, I didn’t really understand death, seeing people cry and the dismal vibe in the air was a bit overwhelming. I wasn’t close to any of the people that died but it’s still quite a bit to process for a child. The first death, close to me, was my cat, and still is my cat. That was one of the worst feelings in my life; it was confusing, shocking, overwhelming, heartbreaking, devastating and left me bewildered, lost and confused. I didn’t know how to express my feelings and I wasn’t encouraged to talk about it and felt ashamed to cry and show any extreme emotions so it all bottled up. I was never spoken to about it. It took me god knows how long to get over it. I can only wish, now, that my parents had talked to me about it and in the future, I will make sure to talk to my own kids about it (death, not my cat).

Talking about death will give you peace of mind.

 

As I said, the funerals I went to were very dismal, icy and melancholic. However, death is celebrated very differently by many cultures, different to the Christian and Catholic-like rituals most Western society and cultures have. Here are some of the different celebrations:

 

Mexico

Everyone has heard day of the dead, also known as Día de Los Muertos, which is celebratedCelebrating Dia de los Muertos at Dominican | November 1st and 2nd. Families are reminded of their dead loved ones, keeping their memories alive and visiting their graves to clean and deliver gifts like flowers. The festival is celebrated in a blast of colour and parades, singing and dancing. It’s truly beautiful and an amazing way to celebrate the dead.

 

Brazil

A few other places in Latin America celebrate Día de Los Muertos but in a calmer way, such as in Brazil, families come together and bring gifts to cemeteries. They also attend mass and eat Churrasco together, which is Brazilian barbeque.

 

Sweden

In Sweden, when someone dies, the body is kept somewhere special for one to three weeks before being buried or cremated. Swedish flowers are laid on the coffin and songs are sung.

 

Poland

The Polish open doors and windows of the house of the person who died so the soul can pass to the spiritual world from their house. Mirrors are also covered and clocks are stopped.

 

Ireland 

Like in Poland, the Irish open windows for two hours so the soul of the deceased can pass out to leave. Blocking the open windows is believed to bring bad luck. After two hours, the windows are shut to prevent the soul from coming back.

 

Muslim Rituals

One of my manager’s cousins died recently, in which he had to travel for the Muslim rituals of death, which is when I first came to learn about it. The Islamic law (sharia) appeals for the rituals Funeral-Islam - Islam rites of passageand burial to happen as soon as possible, usually within 24 hours. The funeral happens at a mosque after washing the body and covering it whilst the body’s hands are placed in prayer. The body as well as the funeral attendees face mecca while being led by the holy leader (Imam) in prayer. The coffin is buried facing mecca followed by prayer (salah). The burial is usually only attended by men and three handfuls of dirt are thrown in by each person. The next several days are followed by other death rituals such as on the seventh day, people visit the grave and bring food to the poor. On the fortieth day, mourners start to wear regular clothes instead of black. In comparison to other mourning rituals and death celebrations, it lasts a lot longer.

 

China

Like Día de Los Muertos, the Chinese have Qingming. It’s Tomb Sweeping Day and the graves of their loved ones are taken care of by cleaning it, cutting weeds, etc. Gifts and offerings are alsoHolidays: Tomb-Sweeping Day also known as Qing Ming takes place in early April, people sweep tombs, and give food a… | Festivals in china, Chinese festival, Holiday brought such as paper, symbolising money. Kites with lanterns are also flown to represent good fortune. This is their way of paying respect to the dead.

 

South Korea

Koreans have Chuseok, a festival in which families wake up early and prepare their tables with food (food is an important part of this celebration as they believe their ancestors harvest the crops of fruits and grains during this time). They bow twice at the table and proceed to eat. They also visit their ancestors’ tombs. People view this celebration as the South Korean Thanksgiving.

 

Japan

The Japanese celebrate the Obon festival, celebrated for three days (13th to 15th of the 7th month on the lunar calendar). Lanterns are placed around the city, rivers and lakes to guide their ancestors, they believe have returned during this period, back to their origins. The graves of families’ loved ones are also visited to be cleaned and to pray at.

Pin by Morikami Museum on Spy Vibe Novel | Japan, World photography, Japanese festival

Egypt

In ancient Egypt, when someone died, there was a lot of worshipping towards the different gods they believed in. They would parade around town with mud on their faces. Organs would be removed and kept in jars from the body, except for the heart. The priest would wash the body and put oil as well as water from the Nile river on it before mummification. The body was then mummified, proceeded by people following the priest while he prayed over the body. I couldn’t find a lot of information on current Egyptian traditions when it comes to death, it was mainly about ancient Egyptian rituals so if anyone knows a bit about current traditions, I would love to know.

 

Hawaii

There is a thousand year old sacred tradition called the Clean Burial where after the body is partially cremated, the bones are salvaged and buried. The bones are placed in a a Hawaiian-made cloth in a burial container. However, I think this tradition has stopped because of health concerns. Nowadays, the funerals are a combination of ancient tradition and modern traditions of the West. In the eulogy, funny stories are shared and laughter is encouraged to show affection.

 

Nigeria

Nigerian funerals contain a lot of singing, dancing, music. In fact, they believe the more of this, the better chance of a successful afterlife the deceased person has. There is prayer, poetry and eulogies. Sometimes there are animal sacrifices such as goats to eat. Burial preparations can last a long time but this depends on the religious beliefs of the family. As I said before, Muslims bury the body facing Mecca but sometimes Nigerians bury depending on gender: men are buried facing east to see the sunrise and women are buried facing the west to see the sunset and so she can prepare dinner for her husband in the afterlife. The body is covered in black earth (red earth is believed to cause blemishes in the afterlife). Special and significant items may be buried with the individual to help them in the afterlife.

 

Ghana

Ghanaians announce the death of a loved one with a letter or email. The main celebration occurs Saturday morning after the burial. There are many different tribes in Ghana who haveWelcome to Ghana, where the funerals are gigantic parties – The Denver Post different death rituals and religious beliefs from the Ashanti tribe to the Mole-Dagbon. In the Ashanti tribe, the family will prepare the body. The festivities include respecting the body as it goes to the ancestral world (Okra). Hundreds of people may attend the festivities; it isn’t just intimate. The Ashanti chief sits under colourful umbrellas, observing. The family members wear red or black. It is common for Ghanaians to sing gospel hymns and other religious songs. Fantasy caskets are commonly used too where casket makers will shape it to look like something the deceased loved such as a plane or bird or sea-creature, etc. A week after the loved one has died, the family will gather to remember them and their life.

 

South Africa

The window of the house that death occurred in may be covered in ash and all beds are removed. Sometimes there is an animal sacrifice to please ancestors. After the funeral and burial, attendees wash off any dirt before entering their houses to get rid of bad luck. Sometimes there is a wake known as the After Tears party entailing drinking and joking, comforting relatives and remembering the deceased.

 

Tibet

Another death ritual I found extremely interesting was the Tibetan Sky Burial. It is a funeral tradition where the corpse of the deceased is put on a mountaintop near a hoard of vultures where they eat at the dead and take it up into the sky. This is a way of giving back to the elements.

Sky Burial Custom in Tibet

Every family is different, no matter what country you are from so rituals differ from family to family but these are some of the traditions that these countries hold. Some bits of information may not be accurate; I’m not an expert on the different traditions in each culture, this is what I have learnt from research. Please do correct me, if there are any mistakes.

Death isn’t necessarily a bad thing, or a curse. Of course, it is a sad, devastating thing but there’s no point stressing or dreading it as it will happen to all of us and we can’t change that. Instead, we should embrace our lives and celebrate the lives and accomplishments of our loved ones, too. Discuss and talk about it and normalise it, not just within our society but within yourself.

 

I would love to know your opinion on death and any cultural rituals you know of.

 

-Shay

Plant Mum! 🌱

The start of 2019, I made the resolution that I would have plants since reading “Plants. Are. Good. For. Your. Mental. Health.”

This is where my addiction began.

 

My first plant was little Velma! I don’t know what kind of plant she was but she was a little cutie and I started to see how having a plant would help my mental health (ha!). She was my little baby.

Velma (front) and Daphne (back)

Velma was then joined by Daphne, my indoor daffodil. I was so excited as Daphne was a little baby so wasn’t a full daffodil yet and I was eager to see her progress, flourishing into the beauty she was going to be. That never came.

Vera was the next addition, an aloe vera.

Velma and Daphne eventually died. RIP.

And this is where it becomes a big old blur!

 

Vera

Vera was thriving, living her best life and then I adopted a little cactus off Etsy named Dr Xero (until writing this post I forgot I still have him). Dr Xero has a PhD. He’s also in love with Vera. Hehe. 

 

I then got this white flowery plant called Zara. She died. 

Zara was replaced when I adopted Bing Bong from Morrisons, a pink flowery beauty, who soon died too. God showed me no mercy.

 

My friend and I had a little cinema date to watch Jumanji 2 and on our adventure in Tescos, looking for snacks, we encountered the beauty that soon became Woody, out mini christmas tree plant. He has fake snow on him! We have shared custody but I’ve had him for a while. He’s turning yellow. 

Woody and his parents

 

My boyfriend and I then went to IKEA where we got matching lily plants. I named my one Lily and he named his Arthur. Couple goals.

Lily ft. sunflowers

 

I started to get too excited and very carried away. From this website, Patch Plants, I bought Leafy, a Devil’s ivy plant AND a Chinese money plant, I named Penny. 

Penny soon died.

 

My precious aloe vera, Vera, started to go mushy so I swapped her for my sister’s very healthy aloe vera and pretended like nothing happened. 😀

 

At this point, I don’t really know what happened. Somewhere along the way I got Alice/Maddie (idk what I even named her), and she was a tradescantia sitara. She was cool. She died. 

 

My dad bought me this asparagus plant thingy that looks like a tree from a savannah so I think I called my plant Savannah but I don’t remember. She’s basically dead but I keep her corpse in my room. It brings me comfort. 🙂

 

Boo (left) and Aurora (right)

I then got a cool pink succulent, in which I LOVED. I called her Aurora, she was beautiful. She was my pride and joy. She tied my room together. And then she started turning green and crippled away no matter what I did. I also got my bamboo plant, Boo, at the same time and I absolutely adored her. She is now on her way to the afterlife. 

 

My boyfriend and I then went on another plant spree and we got two plants each. I got a rubber plant, because I heard they were easy to look after and I also got this tiny little purple leaved plant. Robin was my rubber plant and the little purple one was called Raven and I put a tiny little witch’s hat on her. Raven may or may not be dead but she is still in my room. 

 

For Christmas, I got this cool plant, I don’t know what it’s called. I don’t think I named it either. Might as well not because guess what, it’s basically dead. My cat, Willow, also for some reason LOVED to eat his leaves so I had to move it away. 

My plant and Willow

During my plant collecting time, I also tried to propagate a mint plant. I think I tried three/four times and they kept dying. I am cursed. 

 

Currently, the plants I still have are:

  • Raven, my purple leaved plant (basically dead)
  • Woody, my Christmas plant (although pee pee yellow)
  • Boo, my bamboo (dead!)
  • Savannah, asparagus plant (surprise, dead-ish!)
  • Unnamed Christmas plant (dry and dead like my insides)
  • Robin, my rubber plant (missing leaves but is okay)
  • Vera, my aloe vera (I AM VERY SAD ABOUT THIS BUT SHE IS TURNING YELLOW!)
  • Leafy, my Devil’s Ivy (is missing a lot of leaves)
  • Lily, my lily (she’s actually good)
  • Dr Xero, my cactus (thriving, well and healthy!)

I really really love plants but they don’t love me. It’s the same with squirrels. I’m not sure if Winter is the reason my current plants are departing or because no one watered my plants while I was gone for a month but I don’t think I should be getting anymore. 😦

 

The moral of the story is, I think I have an addictive personality and plants caused more stress and grief on me than I ever could imagine. FUN!

 

THE END

-Shay

Planet Shay’s Fourth Anniversary!


Planet Shay Just Turned Four!!

 

This time in 2015, Planet Shay was created.

It was a boring January evening. My mum and sister sat in the living room watching TV and I was on the family computer, bored. January was always an awful month, to me. Miserable weather, nothing excited to look forward to, Christmas was so far away. With that in mind, I decided to create a blog. A thoughts blog where I could just talk about anything I wanted to and help other people out with problems, etc. I was already familiar with WordPress so it wasn’t difficult getting started. And Planet Shay was born.

Well…

Geekaline was born.

Cringe factor 100% I know!

The idea was combining the word ‘Geek’ (because I was into ‘geeky’ things and a few people called me that so why not just embrace it?) and ‘Coraline’ (because I loved Coraline).

 

My first few posts, apart from the introduction, were my new year resolutions, a post about siblings, and phobias. All those years ago, I wasn’t as knowledgeable as I am now, obviously, since we learn as we age, so many of my posts were a load of BS and some very negative and ‘ranty’ because I wasn’t in a good place and was always very sad and gloomy. But after four years, I’m happy with this blog. I feel like I’ve talked about topics and issues I’m passionate about and I feel like it has a much more positive atmosphere. I have also learnt a lot from it and from doing it.

 

I can’t believe it’s been four years! FOUR! And four is my lucky number so maybe a bit more luck this year and with my posts? XD

 

Thank you everyone who reads, likes and comments on my posts. It really does motivate me to carry on blogging! I know I haven’t been active lately and I haven’t been really good with catching up on other bloggers’ posts but I am very thankful for you, yes you, reading! 😀

 

Here’s to another year! 🥂

 

-Shay

Rants of Retail!

I have a part time job in a clothes shop, where my role changes throughout the day. This means I get to experience different aspects and areas of working in retail and although I am extremely grateful for having a job, especially since it’s not a hard job, there are still downfalls.

So today, I’m going to be ranting about those downfalls. 😀

 

The Customer Isn’t Always Right

Customer service is a huge part of working in retail and I’m generally a nice person, so I am nice to the customers and try to help as much as possible. But good lord, give me strength, sometimes there are people that I honestly think and choose to think have come from living in a cave, having been raised by wolves. It’s like they have no respect or care for other people. I completely understand you can be in a bad mood but it’s still wrong to be mean to someone, especially a worker trying to help you out.

I’ve gotten subtle racism, rude remarks about how I’m doing things wrong when I’m really not, ageism, harassment from older men, etc.  It can really mess up your day when you experience it.

 

The 5p Bane of the Universe Bag

In the UK, the charge for a plastic carrier bag is 5p. This is because it promotes and encourages people to not buy plastic bags and re-use their own or get a bag for life. It means that there will be less plastic bags littered on the streets and less plastic will be manufactured and broken down, adding to global warming. And I mean, it’s only 5p. You can find that on the walk to the shop.

However, if I got 5p for the amount of times I’ve been asked why they need to pay for it or have to stand behind the till, listening to customers complain about the charge, I wouldn’t even need a job. It gets old.

If you don’t want to get rid of your change, re-use a plastic bag or use the magic and power of your hands.

And then I have those cases where people will buy the tiniest thing like a keyring and ask for a bag. Seriously? XD Defeats the whole purpose of save the environment.

 

The Jokes

Sometimes, there isn’t a price tag on the clothes that someone is buying. This means I have to type in a code and usually, before I type it in, I tell them there’s no price tag so they know why I’m going to be tapping away at the keyboard. And sometimes, there are people who like to make overused jokes. I love conversing with customers but just skip the annoying jokes like the ever so funny, “Oh so I guess it’s free then haha.” This also happens when the barcode isn’t working.

I didn’t know I was serving Kevin Hart.

 

Waste of Timers

I often get customers come up to the till with a pile of clothes and I’ll start scanning them. Then they’ll ask what size the item they got is and say “oh…that might be too big.” And then they’ll decide they don’t want it. And that’s fine, you can change your mind but don’t. do. it. for. every. single. item.

And sometimes items are misplaced in the wrong sections. Some stands have signs on it saying £8. It actually says from £8, which means £8 and up. But nobody ever reads the ‘from’ bit so they’ll come up, thinking what they’ve got is whatever it said on the sign and not on the actual price tag and then get irritated at me when it’s a price higher.

Along the lines of wrong prices, sometimes people come up to the till, get me to scan and de-tag and bag everything and then realise the price is a whole £2 above what they thought the price was and yell at me. XD

READ THE PRICE TAG OR ASK FIRST!!!

 

Also, don’t come and tell me that a certain item you have your eye on is cheaper in another shop. If it’s cheaper in another shop, go there then.

 

Are You Gonna Pick That Up?

But seriously, are you?

The amount of times I’ve tidied something up and someone goes over to that particular stand and dropped a few things, turned the hangers around, managed to turn the clothes inside out and have the audacity to look me in the eye and do nothing is beyond me. Or let their kids run around knocking things to the floor.

I get that it’s my job and I have to clean it up but it’s not hard to just hang the one thing your just dropped. It’s like littering and saying it’s the street cleaner’s job to pick it up.

 

The Cherry On Top

Get ready for this because these are true stories. I have never been there on the days these have happened but I get told about it very quickly.

 

One piece of advice for you when clothes shopping is don’t get to comfy in the changing rooms.

People have pooped in there. For real.

 

This one man kept asking for the toilet and asked what he was gonna do since there isn’t a toilet. So he went in the changing room and I don’t think I need to explain anymore.

This other boy was trying on these suits. He was in the changing room for ages and my manager asked his brother why he was taking so long. Eventually, the boy came out, with poop in the suit trousers. He pooped in the suit trousers!!! I actually did come that day but not to work, just to shop.

There have been other cases and some with urine too. You’ve got to mix it up every now an again, of course.

 

Despite all these downfalls, I love my job and the people I work with and even the customers, because most of them are nice. I am very grateful for having it and the downfalls can be annoying but to be honest, they don’t actually bother me a lot. There are definitely more pros to cons but I thought the cons would be funny to rant about. I may post a pros post later on.

 

Do any of you have a job or have experienced the same things I have?

 

-Shay

Survival Guide For Year 12 Students!

It’s the end of summer and back to school!

Whoop whoop! 🎉

 

And I’m in my last year of secondary school/sixth form, which a lot of people would be happy about, but I am sad about because I really do love my school and friends and my subjects. I enjoyed year 12, which is equivalent to 11th grade/junior year in America (and not sure about other countries). Therefore, having gone through the experience of year 12, I want to share little tips on what you should do to minimise stress and regret later in the academic year!

 

Consolidate Your Notes

After every single topic you’ve finished in your subject, go over your notes and textbook for that topic and write up revision notes/flashcards/whatever method you prefer to revise from. Do that after every topic!

I know it sounds like a lot and a faff but honestly, if you write up your notes after the topics, you will understand it more, which will be helpful because those topics will also be applicable to other topics, most likely. It also means that you would have finished writing your revision notes so come the summer term, you won’t have to make those revision notes. You can just start learning off them. Writing up and understanding notes in your own way and method will also make it easier for you to remember.

Trust me! You won’t regret doing this.

 

Organise Yourself, Child

This is something I really wish I did. It’s filing away your notes after each topic.

For example, after your subject teacher has officially finished going over a topic and has moved onto the next, write up your consolidation notes and then file away the notes you made in class into your subject folder. The mistake I made was leaving all my notes in my refill pad and slipping in loose sheets in the front until the whole notebook was full and hard to look at and I couldn’t use it. It’s horrible. It actually stresses me out, right now, thinking about it. It takes hours to sort through and organising it and filing it away.

Just start from day one and organise your damn self! Also, it might be a good idea to get a different notebook for each subject so you don’t get confused or things don’t get messy. And it will get messy. I’ve learnt the hard way.

 

Make A Revision Schedule

At GCSEs, I didn’t have a revision schedule. I just went with the flow and did whatever I wanted or thought I needed to revise that day. And truth is, it worked out because I got decent grades, which I’m happy with. That isn’t going to work for year 12. Nope. I tried to make it work but it didn’t.

You need to make sure you focus on each topic and make sure you learn every detail you need. I know this may not be helpful for all people but I made a calendar of each month and wrote in each day a chapter or topic I would read over and do questions on, taking into account days I couldn’t revise due to other commitments. You can even throw in a chill day but so long as you stick to the schedule and it has every chapter and topic you need to learn fit in, you’ll be absolutely fine.

I was getting really bad grades in the big psychology tests we did, like Es and Ds. I ended up getting the highest grades, like As and Bs, by the end because I stuck to a schedule and learnt and revised all the topics and evaluations. And that was only in about a month, which I can’t guarantee will happen for you but it shows that your grade can really go up!

 

Past Papers Are A Student’s Best Friend

Everyone had their own revision style and method and you should experiment at the beginning of the year to find which one works best for you. If you want me to make a post on all the quirky and classic methods I found, comment so!

However, every student should do past papers, no matter what revision method you do. Always do past papers on top of your chosen personalised method! Do as many as you can and look at the mark schemes and just keep doing them over and over again. Do the same ones a month later and see if you do better. Past paper will help you! I wish I did more!

 

Don’t Be Cocky

I found a lot of people thought that just because they got As at GCSEs, they were going to be fine at A Levels. That’s very wrong! A Levels are way harder and some people say that it’s the hardest stage of your education, even more than University. So sorry to scare you but it’s going to get hard. You can’t just sit back and relax and hope that your A*s and As at GCSEs will help you.

And don’t boast or be arrogant. No one will like you and it’s annoying. 😂

 

Talk To And Make Friends

Year 12 is one of your last years in secondary school/sixth form/college/high school. I’m not sure how it is in other countries but for all I know, in year 13, it’s mainly work and spending your free periods revising. That means year 12 is the year to have a bit of fun, while still maintaining or reaching for good grades. Make a balance of fun and work. I made a lot of friends in year 12 and it was also one of my best years at school and I made a lot of good memories, which you should do too! It’s one of your last years so try and pluck up the courage and confidence to do things your wouldn’t normally do, that are legal and not stupid, of course!

And try to take advantage of the opportunities that come your way! Don’t be scared.

 

Reward Yourself

If you do work hard, you need to reward yourself every week or so. Go out with your friends, go see a film, go to a party on the weekend, do something fun! We’re like dogs. We need to be rewarded for a behaviour to be done frequently so if you want to feel motivated more, you need to reward yourself every now and again.

 

Mental Health Is More Important

Despite what I said, at the end of the day, your mental health is the most important thing. I understand that year 12 is pressurising, especially with students who are aiming really high e.g. applying for medicine, etc. If you find that your mental health and even physical health is suffering, stop for a sec and try to get help or find ways to calm yourself down, etc.

I got really stressed at one point because I was overthinking and the school was putting a lot of pressure on us. I ended up feeling really depressed and experiencing symptoms, which I hadn’t experienced in ages. My eye kept twitching at certain points and I even started struggling to breath – it was really weird, don’t ask. I ended up spending a day writing a list of all the things I was worried about and making me stressed and wrote solutions next to them. I also talked to people about it to get it off my chest.

I know you might not agree with this but your mental health should come first, for several reasons like stress can actually affect your memory badly, and doing badly in year 12 really isn’t the end of the world. Don’t try and put yourself in the position to end up doing badly but if you do, there are always ways to fix that in year 13.

Basically, make sure you’re a happy bean! 🙂


 

Hopefully you actually take my tips into account. They will be really helpful if you take action on them. A lot of students told me the same advice at the beginning of year 12, which I ignored, because I’m stupid and stubborn. You’ll probably end up telling the next year 12’s the same advice.

Apart from that, enjoy year 12 and good luck for all your exams!

 

I’d love to know what subjects you’re doing or any advice that has helped you before, no matter what year you’re in.

 

-Shay

 

P.S One last tip that you should really use even if you decide to ignore the rest, above. Don’t give your pens or pencils to anyone. They may say “I’ll give it back” but that just mean “I’m gonna keep this and hope you forget about it or are too nice to ask for it back.” TRUST NO ONE! (Apart from me and my advice, of course. 😀 )

The Mystery Blogger Award!

I was nominated twice by Josh Gross, quite a while ago, for this award, but put it off for a while at how daunting doing awards post are. It’s just too much work with all that talking about yourself and answering such difficult mind-boggling questions. Gosh, I’m even tired at the thought.

No, but really, I did put this award off for a while because although awards posts are fun to write, they can take a while. Talk about first world problems, huh.

Thank you Josh for the nomination! Since he nominated me twice, I’ll be answering two sets of questions from him!

 

“This is an award for amazing bloggers with ingenious posts. Their blog not only captivates: it inspires and motivated. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging and they do it with so much love and passion.” 

-Okoto Enigma (original creator of the award)

 

Rules

  • Thank whoever nominated you and include a link to their blog – done.
  • Tell your readers 3 things about yourself.
  • Answer the questions from the person who nominated you.
  • Nominate 10-20 bloggers you feel deserve the award.
  • Ask your nominees 5 questions of your choice with one weird or funny one.
  • Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog.

 

Three Things About Me

  1. I have a really good episodic memory, which basically means I remember events with rich detail. It’s a blessing and a curse. 😂
  2. I was about ten when Amy Winehouse died and I was quite sad about it, even though I wasn’t a fan and barely knew her songs, at that time. It was a deep painful feeling as if I had this weird connection to her, that broke. Whenever I listen to her music now, I feel the same feeling. It’s very strange.
  3. I’m really clumsy.

 

Questions and Answers 

If you could take a free class on any topic, what would it be?
The intricate art of ghost busting. Or public speaking.

 

What is your favorite book?
Dead Ends by Erin Lange! It’s really good and she’s such an underrated author.

 

Do you have a specific place you like to go when you need to think? If so, where?
The toilet.

 

Imagine you’ve been commissioned to write any book you want. What kind of book would you write (e.g. fantasy, horror, memoir, nonfiction, etc.)?
I’m currently trying to write a book, which is a soft sci fi, with sociological themes in it.

A weird little book sneak peek

Funny/weird question: If you had to survive in one of the following inhospitable locations, which would you choose?

  • The arctic
  • The Kalahari Desert
  • The Amazon rain forest
  • Detroit

God, Detroit? You trying to kill me? I think I’d have to say The Amazon Rainforest. It would be nice to be able to say that I got suffocated to death by an anaconda.

 

Would you rather read a book or watch television?
As much as I love reading, watching TV requires little effort. However, right now, I am in the mood for reading.

 

If you had the opportunity to learn about any topic, which one would you choose?
Something Physics related, probably. I regret not taking Physics as an A level.


In a few words, what would be your ideal vacation?
I have two ideal vacations. First one: big city, night life, food. Second one: beach, pretty sunset, food. Basically…
                  OR

 

So either get sand stuck in crevices I didn’t know I had or get trampled and crushed by bustling crowds.

 

Which suits you more: living in a large city or a small town? Or maybe someplace even more rural?
Large city because I’m used to that. I like small towns and rural areas but not to live in.


Weird question: If you could be any fantasy creature, which one would you choose?
I would want to be something like Cheshire Cat. You could disappear with your smile left behind in the darkness. Who wouldn’t want that? That, or some sort of morphing creature.


 

My Nominees

Elm

Ana Regina

Unknown Wiki

Ally

Yeo Ye Hang

Zara

Girl Illustrated

Starr

 

My Questions

  1. What’s the most interesting thing you heard or saw this week?
  2. Your opinion and view on aliens and alien conspiracies?
  3. If you could have any animal as a pet, what would it be? Just imagine they wouldn’t kill you if it’s something like a great white shark…
  4. Current mood?
  5. A very short yet wild/interesting story you can tell right now! GO!

 

Looking forward to the nominee’s answers, if you choose to embark on this award adventure.

 

-Shay