On blogging.

I’ve started a blog a few times over the years. Mostly because I felt that I should have one. Not just because I used to have an online journal and it was a great place for spilling my guts, but also because there are so many badly written blogs out there that it infuriates me and makes me want to do better (I am not only competitive but also apparently not very nice). Recently my life’s gone a bit to shit and I’ve been thinking about blogging again, because I have the urge to keep posting on Facebook when actually Facebook’s probably not the right medium for it. Nor Twitter; as much as I like a good Tweet, check the blog name. Oh yeah, baby. I am a long-talker, a la Seinfeld. I can talk the hind leg off a donkey, I’m a chatterbox. Verbose. You know. I love talking. And writing. My brain is full of stuff and it’s good to get it out. I think I’d just forgotten how.

The blog I’d started before – I’d written an entry but never edited it and uploaded it. It was a stream-of-consciousness affair, my usual style, that I’d written on my phone and rediscovered today when I was looking through my memos. This was from that entry, back in January:

“When I registered this blog name [mutuallyweird], it was inspired by a quote I found online. ‘We’re all a little weird. And life is a little weird. And when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall into mutually satisfying weirdness—and call it love—true love.’

As soon as I saw it, it made sense – it perfectly summed up my relationship with my boyfriend. Most people think their relationship is the best, that their partner’s amazing, that their love is ‘indescribable’, or some equally trite statement. I’m not alone in that. Sometimes where I feel alone, though, or have felt alone, is in being ‘weird’; in feeling that nobody understands you, or ‘gets’ you, just because throughout your life even your best and closest chums turn around to you at one point or another and give you a look, and/or a comment, about how weird you are. And then my boyfriend came along, and thinks I’m weird, but not in a weird way! Because he’s weird too!

But anyway, this isn’t about him.  I’ve just been visiting one of my closest, oldest friends, truly a BFF, in Suffolk, sort of rural and very different from Brighton. You know, somewhere that it doesn’t cost a billion pounds to own or rent somewhere to live, somewhere that I think about leaving frequently because of this.  On the train back I kept thinking about Brighton, and what it means to me, and what it means to live here, and that quote popped back into my head. Because Brighton is weird, it’s like my mutual weirdness. Yes, it is very middle class and full of wankers and rich people who have got second homes here, driving up the prices, and has enough hipsters that you could line them up end to end and go around the equator twice, but despite all of that, it’s still home. It might be a transitional place where people come and go and never settle, but some of them do and those that don’t still contribute something to it. And because of all the people in and out, it’s like the tide, sometimes a bit rough, ready to spit you back onto the beach, but most of the time it’s invigorating. On the train back I felt so hungover that all I wanted to do was go home, eat poached eggs on toast and stalk Caitlin Moran on Twitter. Walking home from the station, I felt instead that I wanted to walk along the beach, even though it’s bitterly cold and a bit grey, because I don’t do it enough and it always makes me feel better. Because I can walk around Brighton with my cow hat on and not feel weird, because in a place that has skateboarding dogs and naked sledgers and epic Argus headlines, and club nights with games such as ‘penny up the crack’, how is a woman wearing a Highland Cow hat weird? It would be most other places, but probably not here.

I would like a house, with a garden, and nice clothes and nice food and nice holidays. But what I want more is excitement and comfort, and a thrill in my stomach when I see the pier lit up at night. And it’s the same thrill as when I see my long haired, goofy, weird, beautiful boyfriend: the sense that this is what’s important to me, and where I belong.”

Of course the cruel irony of reading this now – resulting in me curled up into a ball for a few hours, sobbing and snotting onto my knees – is that I split up with said boyfriend last month. Hence everything gone to shit (my beautiful and much-loved cat died the day after, a very poetic end to our relationship). And due to various distractions – an incredibly mad and intense July, with birthdays and drinking and friends and festivals –  and trying desperately to be some sort of Superwoman, because I hate being ‘weak’ (whatever that actually means), the grief is only just starting to hit me now. I’ve been signed off work for a bit and given some Diazepam, thanks to a fucking massive panic attack out of nowhere that resulted in my blood pressure going through the roof and my entire face going numb and tingly, culminating in a jaunt to A&E.

In the same way that holding an object at arm’s length puts more force on your back than holding it close to your centre of gravity, delaying grief by trying to pretend you are ok makes it all the worse when you eventually feel it. Or that’s my theory anyway, after having so many sobbing fits today that I’m surprised there isn’t a mini pile of salt down my cleavage.

So anyway. Maybe blogging will help. Somewhere I can talk about all the songs that currently mean a lot to me, somewhere to put pictures of silly things I find out and about, and somewhere that I can put my thoughts where people can choose to read them, instead of basically spamming said people on Facebook.


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