Rage.

It’s not an emotion I feel very often, to be honest. Despite my sparky personality, below the overexcitable surface, I’m quite mellow.

But some things just make me see red. This is one of those days.

The why isn’t important. In fact, as soon as this post is over, I won’t be thinking about the why. It will be erased from my mind. I just need to write about the rage itself to calm myself down.

When I’m really angry, I find that cleaning or dancing tends to use my rage productively, getting rid of excess energy. When I was younger I used to kick the walls when I got mad. I have always been a violent little person.

I also like to put music on that reflects my mood, and if I’m walking around anywhere, I probably look like I’m on a very serious mission because I just have this absolute death glare.

Because I get truly angry so rarely, it’s generally been building up for a long time. One of the biggest explosions recently was when a member of my ensemble in drama was being really patronising. In reality, whilst she was unpleasant and we will most likely never be friends, she didn’t really deserve the absolute vitriol that was launched her way. No, she just happened to be a perfect manifestation of a lifetime of being patronised, looked down at and talked down to by all sorts of peers, but particular popular girls. I finally stood up for myself after years of standing up for my friends and brushing aside my problems, and it worked!

This time though, this time I didn’t realise that I was angry until it all came spilling out today. I haven’t expressed this anger, because I honestly don’t think it would make a difference at this point and I don’t want to cause upset. So I decided to do the healthy thing and write about it (and post it online El…? Okay, I get this is a public platform, but most of the people I’ve spoken to like this blog for it’s open honesty, so I’m not going to pretend I’m fine. I don’t like going into detail, sure, but I want to be open with you all).

I think I get angry at injustice more than anything else. Of course, that extends into social justice, I’ve said on here before that that sort of thing really sets me off. I’m a hufflepuff (and a decent bit slytherin too!), so I have a sense of right and wrong and a very strong moral compass. I’m pretty naive, so there are many things I will do that I won’t realise are potentially hurtful. Once I realise what I’ve done, I feel so guilty, and I apologise as many times as it takes. But my dad has a philosophy that I always try to follow: above all else, be kind. I guess I get angry when I do everything to treat another human being with kindness, whilst doing what needs to be done, and I get repaid with neutrality or downright negative responses. If I was a truly good person, I would be able to continue to be kind anyway; I would accept that sometimes people won’t be kind, or forgiving, or patient like I try to be. I’m trying to learn to love everyone, in spite of what they might do or say. It’s hard, though. I’m still on the fence about whether that’s the right attitude to adopt during such fragmented time. Love doesn’t always win. Acceptance and tolerance, sure, but that’s not a one-woman job.

I think the truth is, it’s hard to be kind unconditionally because rage is rarely a lone emotion.

Usually it comes with a sense of hurt or grief.

Sorry if this was a bit rambly and incoherent, I needed to calm myself down and get stuff off my chest.

This is quite dark and depressing for me, I promise I’ll get back to my chipper self soon!

Love, El x

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My recommendations!!

Hi everyone! So it occurred to me that I often absorb a lot of media, but whenever I come to write a review on something, there never seems to be enough to say to fill a whole blog post. So instead, I thought I’d compile a series of shorter recommendations into one post!

Book: The Power

Okay, so I recently finished this book and OH MY GOODNESS. OH ITS SO GOOD.

Basically, it follows the stories of four different people- Margot, Tunde, Roxy, and Mother Eve- as they navigate a world turned upside down. One day, teenage girls everywhere have the ability to shoot electricity out of their hands, and they can pass on the ability to adult women too. It’s an insightful observation the gender politics of today, as well as an exploration of what a matriarchy would look like- the conclusion being, about as dysfunctional and dystopian as our patriarchy. I would encourage everyone to read this- it’s a powerful mixture of compelling fiction and critical analysis. I would also encourage anyone who thinks that women the world over have won the war against them to read this: it shows the small but pervasive ways in which Western countries have internalised sexism, but also brings into stark reality the way women in developing countries are treated, as well as the way in which women are treated as ‘spoils of war’ in countries in conflict; these inequalities are held up for questioning even more when you flip the positions of the sexes.

TV: Grace and Frankie

This show is nothing less than a work of genius. When Grace and Frankie are asked to a meal with their husbands who work together, they assume it will be to announce their upcoming retirement. In fact, their husbands, Robert and Sol, have come to tell them that they are both getting divorced from their wives so they can get married- to each other. The following three series follows the families try to navigate their new and confusing relations, focusing on the two ex-wives, two very different personalities forced to live together in the beach house their families joint-own. After several previous years of animosity, the women find themselves relying on each other. It’s truly wonderful to see older women dominate the screen in an industry and a society that so often shuts them out. I often think that they are a more engaging and endearing double-act than the new couple Robert and Sol. At some points it will have you crying with laughter, others you will be moved close to tears. It’s funny, poignant, and sometimes painfully honest.

Film: Legend

I was told to watch this film as research for an upcoming role, and it really is an incredible film. Tom Hardy is a genius, masterfully playing two very similar yet different characters with such finesse at times I forgot they were the same person. I also personally think that the complexity of the Kray’s was portrayed: they were shown in a fairly sympathetic light, but nothing was detracted from their incredibly violent lifestyle. Hardy’s portrayal of Ronnie Kray as mentally ill (I’m unsure what he would be diagnosed with under modern medical terms, but in the film he was referred to as a ‘paranoid schizophrenic’) was particularly well done, I think, considering it is very sensitive subject material. He wasn’t portrayed as a one-dimensional thug, but as an intelligent man with clear and, in some cases, good ambitions; but his explosive violence and mental fragility  was also shown.

Poetry:

Sometimes, you find art that catches you in a vulnerable moment and makes you cry, right from the heart. This poem caught me in one of those moments.

Theatre: The North! The North!

A few days ago I went to see this piece of theatre called ‘The North! The North!’ in the Bikeshed Theatre in Exeter, and if I get any time I will definitely expand on this with a longer review, but it was really awesome! It was a mixture of monologue, storytelling, fantasy and dystopian horror. It reminded me of the podcast ‘Alice isn’t Dead’ in the way it creatively described horrific creatures without ever showing them. It was a one-man show, and the actor moved with such energy I was amazed he was still standing by the end of it. One of my favourite scenes was a fight scene. As I previously mentioned, I recently watched ‘Legend’, which features a lot of gratuitously gory fight scenes. As this was a one-man piece, the entire fight sequence was mimed, but you could see every punch given and received in a way that made me flinch without the sensationalist blood and guts that we’re accustomed to.

Music: BANKS- Goddess and The Altar

I found BANKS from a Lucy Moon video recommending good break up albums. This genre of music (alternative pop?) is not really my usual preference, but I absolutely fell in love with these albums. BANKS clearly had a toxic and unhealthy relationship which obviously doesn’t apply to lots of people, but the raw honesty of these albums really helped me process my emotions and if you’re going through a break up I’d really recommend them. There are songs for when you are feeling empowered (Fuck with Myself, Goddess), songs for when you’re angry at them (Mind Games, This is Not About Us, Judas), songs for when you’re angry at yourself (27 hours, Alibi, Change) and songs for when you have to admit that the fault probably doesn’t lie solely with one person (Gemini Feed, To The Hilt, Waiting Game, Before I Ever Met You). It also has some really lovely songs like Mother Earth that are just really chilled. Both albums are a mixture of synth sounds and a raw, almost tribal cry that echoes back into history and reverberates into the very core of what it feels like to be human.