31 August 2014
The Land of Make Believe - allSTARS
Sexfaldur - amila
You There - Aquilo
Somebody - Atomic Kitten
I Dream - Billie
Cherokee - Cat Power
I Belong In Your Arms - Chairlift
Radio - The Corrs
Landfill - Daughter
Where to Start - Elin Ruth Sigvardsson
Summer Girl - Family of the Year
Hometown - Fatherson
Kites are Free - The Free Design
The Thin Line - Heather Peace
My Best Friend - Hello Saferide
You Can Be Timeless - The Henry Clay People
Bang on the Piano - Jack McManus
Not a Bad Thing - Justin Timberlake
Playing My Game - Lene Marlin
Casanova - Marion Ravn
Old Fashioned - Me One
Rearrange - Miles Kane
Keep - Nils Frahm
Pumpin Blood - NONONO
Release Me - Oh Laura
Time After Time - Quietdrive
Rockstar - Reemer
One of Those Nights - Shawn Mendes
Without Country - Tiger Please
29 August 2014
I attended the Glasgow book launch of Scottish Independence: a Feminist response on Tuesday. The Edinburgh launch has already passed but you can still attend the Dundee one on the 8th of September.
An #indyref event in Edinburgh: why the English and Welsh Greens support independence for Scotland.
How to tell the difference between BDSM and abuse.
New on the RSS Feed: i am a food blog.
Congregational candidate sends condoms to anti-choice group.
A look at the difference languages in the British Isles.
I have a phobia and get really offended/riled when the word is miss-used however I've never taken issue with words such as homophobia. But it could be food for thought.
30+ privileges of being cis-gendered.
I think America is a fascinating country and I think Native American culture is one of the most fascinating aspects, and loved this piece of native women fighting to preserve the culture.
Related: why do so many people pretend to be Native American?
Potato Days Festival is a thing in Minnesota.
Also in case any of my readers are in the American mid-west soon, female lift-sharing in Minnesota.
So I'm not a general fan of Wings Over Scotland, but this post is worth sharing.
I read this post a while ago and it is still food for thought: Scotland isn't this strange progressive country, it's no more progressive than most European countries (it's Britain that's strange).
The Conversation has a big section on the referendum but I've only read one or two articles so can't comment on the quality.
Some tips on when vibrators go out of date.
Colour coded photography.
A feminist film I'm thinking of seeing in Glasgow is anyone else fancies it?
Cute cups to buy on Etsy.
From my experience in past relationships I agree that objectification within relationships is a very real thing.
11 life skills netball teaches you. Hah!
Some words on the intersection of the vegan and LGBT community.
Some of the links I've shared recently show that I've been doing a lot of research on intersectionality between different forms of oppressions - this article is a great starting point as to why it's important.
If I was to have a chat with my 12-year-old self I'd say that you shouldn't be worried about being sexy because it's creepy for 12 year olds to be sexy. But still, thong ownerships was a big worry going through high school. (as much as it baffles me now)
Related: five things I'd tell my teenage self.
I got so many feels on Buzzfeed this week: reasons we should weep for the children of today.
Some reasons why some of us won't do the ice bucket challenge.
6 things positive happy people believe.
Dogs hugging their owners.
Annndd, totally useless product designs.
26 August 2014
For someone who runs a blog primarily recognised for cruelty-free beauty, I only tend to write a beauty post once a week. This seems to be a lot less than other bloggers in the same niche with my reasons being 1) I'm on a graduate income and 2) there's a lot of products I try that I just don't have much to say about because they were just a bit 'meh'. The products that are covered by the second point are what I am concentrating on today.
The products pictures above and mentioned below are those that I haven't got anything particularly riveting to say about. They didn't make me break out in a rash but they certainly didn't do any wonders either - they fall into the 'meh' or 'okay' or 'I'll finish it but probably wouldn't re-purchase' category. Maybe even 'make up your own mind'.
Superdrug Simply Pure Spot Clearing Range
Only two products are used in the picture above but I actually bought every product from the range and the only one I've been impressed by and might re-purchase is the moisturiser. I did find the various face washes worked quite well on my back - where the skin is different - but other than that I don't have much interesting to say about the range.
Nude Purifying Face Wash
I wrote a blog post on this product along with the Purifying toner earlier this year and my opinion is very much the same. And for the record, the tube I used in this photo is still the same tube I used back then - clearly not in a rush to finish it.
Superdrug Facial Wipes for oily/combination skin
The Body Shop Seaweed night time clarifying treatment
I did mention the seaweed range by The Body Shop last year and I stand by that the range on the whole is one my favourite skincare ranges. However, I didn't ever see much of a difference in my skin after prolonged use of the night treatment despite my initial excitement of finding one which is meant for my skin type. I'm also confused as to when I'm meant to use it - after my moisturiser or just after cleansing?
Superdrug Naturally Radiant Brightening Hot Cloth Cleanser
This is actually what I've been using at night since I bought it maybe two months ago - and I like it enough as a product to remove my make-up and ensure my face is clean before nodding off. However, I doubt I'll repurchase this as I haven't seen a general difference to my skin.
Arbonne FC5 Deep Cleansing Mask
It was good for soaking oil and my face felt very 'clean' after using it - but that was about it. I didn't see any major differences to skin after prolonged use.
Have you tried any of these products yourself? Were they okay for you too or do you have something more interesting to say about each of them?
25 August 2014
Wholefoods in Giffnock. Mainly cause I am lazy and didn't want to get a train or bus out only to discover it wasn't worth my time. Luckily when my mum was down for the Commonwealth Games she had her car with her so we headed out to this southern suburb of Glasgow for a nosey.
The first thing that hit me when we walked in was that this was like a proper supermarket. For some reason I had it in my head that it would only slightly bigger than some of the health food stores in town. But this was just a bit bigger than some Tesco Metros and included the different departments you'd expect from a supermarket such as fruit and vegetable, dairy, international, beauty, frozen, cleaning and meat.
I was on a bit budget at this point (I mean, this was during the Commonwealth) so I was going for a look instead of splurge, and if anything I was making myself a mental note of stuff to buy once my finances caught up with. What I did buy was some normal stuff that I needed anyway such as bread and laundry liquid (vegan and Leaping Bunny certified) but I also picked up some veggie cider, a new perfume, and some 'gourmet popcorn' to eat whilst watching the Commonwealth Games Closing Ceremony with my mum.
But moving back to that perfume. You may have spotted me on Twitter and Instagram absolutely ecstatic to discover that Pacifica is available there. This is a brand I have heard American cruelty-free bloggers such as Tashina go on about but I had no idea I could purchase them in the UK (aside for paying for shipping costs - no thanks!). They don't have the full range of products in Griffnock but they did appear to have the whole perfume range, which is the part I was most excited to look at as cruelty-free (let alone vegan) perfumes are hard to come by. I was on a budget so kept to buying one perfume (French Lilac) but will definitely be back to buy a few more.
Overall, the beauty and personal part of the Wholefoods is the part I was most impressed by - seeing quite a few natural, organic, cruelty-free and vegan brands on shelves for me to have a smell of instead of having to order online with nothing by gut feeling to go on. I also spotted that Yes lube and French Letters condoms which I have mentioned in some Linkables and on Twitter were also available in the store.
The rest of the Griffnock store was good and it included a wide range of food and drink - their alcohol section also contained some brands marked as veggie which I hadn't heard of and I spotted some food brands I've only seen at the Ideal Home Show/Country Living Country Fair. I was however disappointed in the cleaning section as I am trying to switch to cruelty-free cleaning and I also didn't spot my favourite Violife Cheese on the shelves. In the grand scheme of things, I can get everything I need to eat vegan in the city centre of Glasgow (mainly in Quality Vitamins and Herbs off Sauchiehall Street) and would only head out to Griffnock if I was going to have people over and required something special, or was making a recipe that called for a fancy vegetable. However, I mentioned above that I loved their beauty department and will be making trips back in order to pick up some more Pacifica goodies and possibly some other brands once I've checked their cruelty-free status.
Should also throw in that they have a small gardening section however it was tiny and as you come in the door - but you can buy the beginner 'grow your own' kits as well as organic soil.
Also below is my terrible video I filmed on Saturday of some of the stuff I bought, but because I left the filming so late I was only able to include three products as I had used/eaten/drank the others! Maybe my next haul will be more timely and exciting....
23 August 2014
For someone who has been making the effort to buy more clothes from independent designers and charity shops it kind of pains me to admit that this entire outfit came from Primark. For me personally the 'casual' section of my wardrobe is the most lacking as I spend most of my week in office clothes and when I go out with friends it's usually for drinks and gigs at night so I own plenty of fancy frocks (a lot of which are from independent brands). So when I took a day off work for Hayley to come see me in Glasgow for a trip to the Science Centre and some food (Bar Soba in the West End, which is amazing and of course I'll be blogging about it) I headed out quickly to try and find a suitable outfit for some during-the-day-socialising.
It is pretty rare to see me in trousers and I had admittedly not really taken to the floral trousers trend (breeks is the Scots word for trousers) but for some reason when I seen these hanging up in Primark I just kind of had to have them. And then teamed them with a white jumper I found on the same shopping trip (which transitioned into my office clothes section of my wardrobe). The pleather jacket is one I bought a few months ago (as I seen in this outfit post) and is also from Primark and one of my go-to jackets. I however didn't manage to find any shoes on my shopping trip or in my already somewhat large collection that matched the outfit and were suitable for long walking distances so I chucked on my vans which didn't look right with the trousers at all so that's why my feet are chopped out of the photos!
When it comes to buying more independent brands I have found that it is a transition, just like vegetarianism, cruelty-free beauty then later veganism and my ongoing transition to cruelty-free cleaning products. My decision to buy more independently isn't just fashion snobbery but also from an ethical point of view and I've successfully started buying more night-time clothes from lesser known brands but still struggling with just about everything else. If anyone has any pointers or shops where I could have a look I'd be grateful.
22 August 2014
One of the best things I've read all week: Entitlement and Apathy, the case of Women Against Feminism.
One of my pet peeves when it comes to social/people skills is not making the effort to use the person's correct name: this grammar expert agrees with me.
I've been doing a lot of research into 'choice feminism' this week and this post looks into the possible misuse of the word.
This post is also quite good.
I've been staying pretty quiet as I really don't have the energy to get involved in what has been a very tense debate but with one month to go I may share some of what I've been reading (because I have been keeping up to date, just very quietly) - and I am getting more convinced that a yes vote would be good but it was Green Yes and Radical Independence that have almost brought me round as they paint an image of a country I'd like to live in, which the mainstream Yes campaign just hasn't done for me.
If you're also not really feeling the Better Together or Yes Scotland campaigns some other groups I know of include Business for Scotland, National Collective, Women for Independence, Scottish Socialist Party and here's one list I quickly Googled and here's another.
I also went to a panel debate this week on the Scottish referendum and the monarchy which you can watch yourself here.
Vegan Life magazine has now been released and you can get it in digital format.
If you need more vegan reading in your life, here's a great vegan blogs round-up.
Arielle Scarcella is a great YouTuber I found this week, and I've been making my through her 'lesbians explain' videos.
She also runs a channel called Girlfriends TV which looks at a whole load of issues regarding all the sexualities.
My friend Charlotte of Colours and Carousels has started a Facebook group for Scottish Bloggers.
Some more guidance on animal-testing laws in China.
For everything progressive about Orange is the New Black they aren't exactly helping raise the profile of bisexuality (even though they have a great opportunity to).
10 of the best herbs to grow in containers.
Some of the ingredients in perfume (kinda gross, tbh).
A study on why women dominate the PR profession.
There is such a thing as a Barbie Collectors Convention.
11 things white people should stop saying to black people.
5 traits of great online community managers.
If you've ever wondered what Mean Girls would be like if it was set on Downing Street, then this Tumblr is all kinds of wet dream material.
Some psychology on couples that put everything on bloody Facebook.
30 feminist lessons in 30 years.
The Nostalgia Machine could possibly get addictive.
Broughty Ferry in Dundee was named the nicest neighbourhood in Scotland.
Also in Dundee, a documentary about one of its independent record stores.
What it feels like to by childfree by choice.
This woman speaks my language: peach wine slushies.
Some hilarious photos of Leonardo DiCaprio from the 1990s.
Chocolate lego is a thing.
If you're an Edinburgh reader here's some other places in Scotland you can get to in under two hours.
One of my favourite digital media agencies re-designed the website of one of my favourite hair care brands.
If you're vegan and planning a visit to Bangkok here's a vegan bakery you can stop by.
If you're vegan in London please make sure you're not supporting this vegan coffeeshop with neo-nazi links.
I'm not much of a marriage person, but if I was and I was ready to take the plunge I wouldn't sit around and wait for my other half to obey gender norms, and here's some videos of women who also had that thought.
I am LOLING: Giant pandas revealed as new owners of Rangers.
21 August 2014
Whilst my mum was down for the Commonwealth Games (still getting all those backlogged posts up) we headed into Merchant City to switch sport for some art farty fun and an Irn Bru shop. Despite frequenting the Merchant City area of Glasgow more often - and it being a smaller distance away - than the West End and the areas of the Southside populated by restaurants, I've never actually paid a visit to a restaurant in the area just east of the city centre.
We popped in by The Dakhin, which specialises in South Indian cuisine. I'll be honest, despite almost always eating at an Indian restaurant when my mum is in town I'm not sure what constitutes as South Indian cuisine. We also weren't super hungry so on the table you only see two curries (one of them proved to be me that my avoidance of aubergines which started as a child is still relevant today), some dosas and some stuffed mushrooms. If you're a regular reader than you may have spotted that every time I stop by an Indian I always give their nann breads a rating - however this place didn't have any! I'm assuming this had something to do with them maybe not being South Indian (their sister place, The Dhabba for North Indian cuisine, has some nanns on the menu). I won't moan as all and all the food did appear to be authentically Indian, and the restaurant had a nice but professional vibe (with waiters that remember your order by heart rather than scribbling it haha). Nice little place to go with your mum, friend or if you're a couple (though maybe a couple that's been together a while, not sure for a first date).
15 August 2014
Important: tell Fox news to fire the presenter who called Robin Williams a coward.
Darren Hayes pays tribute to Robin Williams.
And a reminder that suicide and depression are not selfish.
I loved Zoe's frank blog post on whether university is correct for you.
How to deal with trolls.
My new favourite 'positive lifestyle' blog.
I'm not sure I agree with everything in it, but this is a good read about being a 'bad' feminist.
Also on feminism: a great feminist YouTuber I tweeted about this week Melissa A. Fabello who concentrates on body image and media literacy.
Related: 50 feminist films.
Less than a month until the British Beard and Moustache Championships.
Important quiz: are you an introvert, extrovert or sea monster?
I'm currently experimenting with Trello to organise ideas.
Fancy brewing your own alcohol?
10 reasons why BMI is bullshit.
I don't think I want to try it but here's how to find your saddest tweets.
Something I've wondered for a while: why aren't tampons free?
50 irresistible vegan sandwiches.
Despite having a love for my balcony garden I suck at keeping house plants alive, maybe I need one of these?
An experiment with the Facebook algorithm: I liked everything for a week and this is what it did.
Tiny but tasteful tattoos.
New Instagram trend: taking a photo of statues but making it look like as though the statue is taking a selfie.
DIY heart marshmallows. (How glamorous do these women look whilst camping?)
You might argue some people have too much time on their hands, but I'm glad someone made a chart of the hip-hop artists with the largest vocabulary.
If you run a business you'll know you should be blogging but what if you really don't want to? Here are some other ideas.
Some new music I've been loving this week: NONONO.
Some more music I've been loving: Tiger Please.
Such memories: 29 things you'll only remember if you're a MySpace kid.
For fans of Shaun of the Dead (which should be everyone).
25 things people in healthy relationships do.
On the topic of healthy relationships Love is Respect is a site everyone should be reading.
Finally, realistic Pokemon.
13 August 2014
Backpack: New Look
What inspired me to to get myself a pretty summer backpack was my trips to Dundee. I had an Animal backpack currently on loan from my mum for my trips back to my university town. But it was one that she bought for travelling, and my mum is very much a function over form kind of person so it was a blatant tourist backpack. When I was walking up Buchanan Street to get my Megabus to Dundee and then walking to my friend's flat it didn't bother me that I was wearing an ugly backpack that clearly indicated I had been on a train or bus. But I always like to take a few hours to walk around the Dundee city centre to visit some of my favourite independent shops before I head back to Glasgow and walking around with a big and frumpy rucksack always irritated me then. This then led me to the rare purchase of a new bag with the intent of it being a practical but stylish one that could look like an everyday bag rather than mark me out as a tourist.
This one is from New Look. I have said that this year I would like to buy more stuff from independent shops but I needed to buy one quickly, and I knew New Look had a good selection in. Anyone know of any independent or charity shops in Glasgow which have a good bag selection where I could add another rucksack option to my wardrobe?
12 August 2014
Gosh have a been a favourite brand of mine for a long time. Even before my cruelty-free days I loved a lot of what they offered and was tickeled pink when I realised I could still buy from them when I made my decision two years ago. Recently when I made the switch to veganism I was further glad to realise that they have a vegan products list which you can get from their customer support team. It's not publicly available on their website but if you pop them across an e-mail they should send it right across (I'm yet to hear someone in the vegan niche complain about not receiving a reply).
I printed off my list and headed out to Superdrug to do a bit of a pay day haul. There's still quite a few vegan products I don't own but I have so far only picked up the ones I knew I could get use out of and could become part of my daily routine. For example, the bronzer was marked as vegan but I prefer pale and interesting and there were various lip colours I knew wouldn't suit me. But nevertheless here are my favourites from the range that I have tried thus far.
Intense Eyeliner Pen
I have tried a lot of the eyeliner pens out there - I think my face doesn't quite look right in photos where I'm missing even a thin cat flick. So take it from me that this is one of my favourite eyeliner pens. I was already quite confident I would like this because I was once a fan of their liquid eyeliner before I discovered the joy of eyeliner pens.
I currently own their black and grey shades - the black is what I wear generally but the grey is what I wear when I want something slightly more striking but not quite feeling like whipping out some pink.
I'll straight up admit that I'm not much of a BB Cream (or CC Cream, or DD Cream) gal and I find them to be glorified tinted moisturisers. However what I do like this for is some extra coverage for my face prior to applying foundation - and this BB Cream has had some positive reviews from the vegan blogging community so it's getting included. ;)
X-Ceptional Wear Foundation
I'm currently in the market for a thick, full-coverage foundation and the name suggested that this might be what I am looking for, alas it was medium coverage. However it's a medium coverage foundation with a really nice natural finish that isn't matte or dewy, and could pass as really good skin. However, it is a cheap foundation so the staying power isn't brilliant and I would recommend using a very good primer (my favourite is Arbonne) and a very good setting product (my favourite is Urban Decay).
I still need to fire off an e-mail back to Gosh (it's on my to-do list, I'm a busy woman!) but I wasn't sure if Gosh's lipsticks - one of my all time favourites - are vegan as the name of the lipstick was different on my list to the name on the labelling in the shop. So we may not know for a while. However their lip liners were on my list and they really impressed me - because the staying power is amazeballs. So until I know about the lipsticks I shall be using their lip liners all over my lips.
I am currently the owner of only one Gosh nail polish (I'm still currently trying to collect all Barry M shades) but I feel like I will be back for more. They're the same price as your usual high street nail polishes but I really like the consistency and after one week of wear only two of my nails had any obvious chipping. The colour I picked up - Kind of Pink - is a red-pink shade which still leans more to the pink side and has cool undertones. For me personally, I love nail polishes that are an interesting shade of certain colours (rather than the standard colour you'd find on a colour wheel) which is something that higher end brands do better than high street so top marks to Gosh for this (did that sentence make sense? maybe you have to be really into colour?).
What are your favourite Gosh products? Any guesses what might be in my 'not liked' post?
10 August 2014
In keeping with yesterday's very obvious vegan theme, I have a few photos from the Vegan Fete last Saturday held at The Flying Duck in Glasgow. I went to another Vegan Fete back in April and did find this one quite same-y as the last one with a lot of the same stalls. I seen on Twitter that Karris and The Vegan Kind were at a business event but a new stall in the form of Glasgow Mega Death who sell hot sauces were there, and I did last month buy one of their sauces for Alan, and I really need to chase him up on what that was like (he also did almost get some sort of spicy nuts, but they had 'cry like a girl' on the back so I put that back...). Missy's Vegan Cupcakes were there as normal and the pink cupcake you see in the finally picture was Strawberry Daiquiri which was glorious and gobbled down before I left. I also had a £5 'express massage' which was kind of shit though my mum liked hers (am I the only person who dislikes 'pressure' massages and would rather someone just drew on my back?).
As for The Flying Duck itself I don't think I've ever given it a review despite having stepped inside of it more times than most other venues in Glasgow. It's a vegan cafe during the day and a nightclub once 11pm comes around. It's definitely of the student and hipster persuasion (my mum called it an 'eclectic mix of people')and I could understand why some people wouldn't take to it. I personally find the food to be of a similar quality I can cook up myself but the nightclub is one of my favourites and is my go-to choice when I want a night at a bar/club hybrid and something a bit chilled rather than a raucous night (that's what The Catty is for...).
P.S. Like The Flying Duck on Facebook to keep an eye on up-coming dates.
9 August 2014
It seems like forever ago that I received the one-off beauty box from The Vegan Kind (I have been up to a lot and have a massive backlog of posts to write-up). I'm sure everyone in the cruelty-free/vegan blogging niché (and even those in the general lifestyle blogging niche) have heard of the Vegan Kind but if not: it is a monthly subscription box set up by cruelty-free and vegan blogger Karris which contains vegan lifestyle products such as food, beauty and household items. I haven't subscribed to the main box as I have a soya intolerance so there is no guaranteeing I would be about to use everything each month however when they announced a one-off beauty box I began frantically searching for my bank card.
So since we've all definitely got ours by now, let's see what was inside.
I was very happy with what was in this box, with two brands I had been wanting to try and two other products made my July favourites videos (which is still to be uploaded, but should be soon!).
Inika Black Cavier Eyeliner
This is a brand that I had discovered via Sarah's blog just a few days before receiving my box. At the time I was still waiting for them to reply to my cruelty-free e-mail and I am happy to say that they have now replied. This eyeliner is very black and has become my go to for lining my tight line as the nub is the perfect balance between firm and soft.
Furless stippling brush
Furless is a brand I had also heard of but I am admittedly not much of a brush person and even do my eyeshadow with my ring finger (I know). This brush is extremely soft but I'm possibly not the best person to review it as I used it for my foundation one morning and found it just slowed me down like all make-up brushes.
White Rabbit Cleansing Water
This is another product within the box that I have found myself reaching for quite a bit. It is marked as cleansing water however the instructions say to use it to remove make-up, and I have found it to be a gentle way to remove my regular day make-up. It doesn't work if I have a full-face of evening/glamour make-up but I have found it fantastic to use at the end of a weekday to remove my more natural office make-up. It is also extremely gentle and it didn't sting my eyes (even when applying it to my lower lash line with my eyes open). This is a Scottish brand based out of Kilmarnock (where quite a bit of my family come from) and the owner (who is lovely, she takes part in #cfbloggers) is currently experimenting with various plant-based alternatives for some ingredients ingredients to make it a fully vegan brand. This is one brand I'd love to support further.
Beautiful Movements Cosmetics Eyeshadow
This is one product I haven't got around to using as truthfully loose eye-shadows are really not my thing and I don't want to faff with them at 8am in the morning - maybe I'll use them in a night time look at some point.
Simply Soaps Orange Cocoa Bath Melt
I know it says Hedgerow Herbals on the packaging but on the flyer we have Simply Soaps, so we're going with that. This is another product I haven't had the chance to use yet as my parents were staying at mine for the last two weekends and the bath is in what is technically my flatmates bathroom so we'll need to see when I get to use this. I can confirm that the melt smells lovely though!
You can also watch me opening The Vegan Kind beauty box here:
8 August 2014
Offensive poster by PETA, edited by Tilly.
I've still not seen Maleficnet (I know, right?) but this was a nice read.
One of the best things I read this week: a story of how 'saving herself' damaged one women's relationship with sex.
As an introvert I give myself a weekend where I do nothing, because I'd fall apart otherwise.
I've never hated Mondays (yeah, I'm one of those people) but I like the idea of non-negotiables on a Monday.
If you're an Irish blogger, here is a new Facebook group for you.
Celebrities and their historical lookalikes.
Another gardening blog for the RSS Reader: Woolly Green.
I've been invited to a Holi Festival/Colour Run and know people have been on them so I'll try and not be too blunt. But my first thought? Cultural appropriation. And a quick Google told me quite a few Hindu people find them disrespectful. (Obviously not all Hindu people, but it's food for thought)
10 things Glasgow 2014 taught me.
Think you'd be a bad-ass during the zombie apocalypse? If you live in Glasgow you can prove it during a fake one.
The coolest record stores in Britain.
Buzzfeed was brilliant this week: 18 times Severus Snape had all the answers to life, a dog salesperson in Japan, the internet's funniest responses to the Scottish Independence debate, 22 things only people who hate noise will understand and 14 reasons Dumbledore is a massive jerk.
6 signs you're a truly genuine person.
This is a long piece - and I haven't even finished it myself - which looks at the dispute between trans and radical feminism.
46 photo you might not have seen before.
Annnnd, a hip hop tune about the hamster of a London gang dying. Emotional stuff.
7 August 2014
The generic Commonwealth t-shirt (from the official store in George Square) was what I wore the rhythmic gymnastics along with a quilted pleather skirt. I wouldn't recommend wearing real or fake leather in that heat however the 'day/casual' part of my wardrobe is my smallest part (I spend five out of seven days at an office) and I only realised how lacking it is in clothes that tick off all three bullet points of being day appropriate, suitable for sweltering heat, and something without a print (and let's be honest that's barely anything in my wardrobe). So pleather skirt with bare legs it was.
When it was time to see the Scottish Thistles take on Malawi the weather had cooled slightly and it was okay to done my casual attire 'fall-back' of tights with denim shorts. I don't have any photos of this as I went alone to this match so couldn't do snazzy outfit photos outside the SECC Precinc, so a selfie before I left will have to do. But for those of you with visual imaginations I was wearing this t-shirt with the shorts/combo mentioned above, a pair of black vans and my snazzy patriotic nail art (and a flag).
As for the netball final between Australia and New Zealand (and the bronze match between England and Jamaica before it) I wore a t-shirt my mum still had going about from her days in NZ with Māori patterns on it. You might not know (but I did mention it my main Commonwealth post) my parents lived in NZ for four years in the mid 80s. Even though I wasn't around yet (I was born in 1990, I sometimes get mistaken for a Kiwi if this isn't pointed out) and have never visited the back end of the world I decided to go with my parents' former home and support them (my parents still regularly support Kiwi sports teams). Teamed with my generic shorts, tights and vans look (but with a faux leather jacket).
If you're sporty, how do you like to dress to sports events?
6 August 2014
After a wee spot of rhythmic gymnastics on the first Friday of the Commonwealth me and my mum headed out into the West End for some grub - and as always when my parents are in G-town we had our eyes open for a new Indian place. I had spotted Masala Twist on some of my Byres Road jaunts a couple of times and decided to give it a try.
The place is small (and truthfully a bit cramped - though I did discover upstairs was huge) but sells authentic feeling Indian food and has extremely friendly staff and excellent service. Me and my mum were nested near the bar (obviously) where we had some Bacardi and coke and some wine after walking from the SECC to Byres Road in the heat that Glasgow experience that weekend.
Personally, for starters I went for the Spicy Garlic Mushroom which for some reason I had imagined would be stuffed mushrooms but came as a curry and despite the waiter's warning that spicy was a very suitable name, I still seem surprised when they started a fire in my mouth and prompted my mum to get the waiter to bring me water. Then for mains I went for a Bombay Aloo which was a bit more subtle.
The curries were on the average side; definitely tasty but not something I'm going to sing praises about however Masala Twist provided my tastebuds with the best nanns ever. Me and my mum are both nann fans so we ordered two for the table - one peshwari and one vegetable. For my measurement of how good I consider these nanns to be I'll use this anecdote: even though I was stuffed I kept tearing off little bits of the nanns just cause I wanted to taste them again despite my stomach telling me to stop (use your thoughts to imagine this).
After stuffing ourself, we transported ourselves and our food babies back to the Southside of Glasgow and went straight to bed haha.
4 August 2014
For the past two weeks (or month, if you include the World Cup) you'd be forgiven for thinking I'd turned into a sports blogger. I can assure you haven't and I will soon resume my Instagram updates of vegan pasta dishes and tweets about animal testing but when your city hosts a major worldwide sporting event it's pretty difficult to not get involved with it.
Glasgow was awarded the host city spot long before I moved here and despite the seven year build-up the whole thing didn't feel real until a week beforehand when we were receiving letters about road closures, you could play spot the tourist and the high barriers around the SECC were taken down and you could see the graphics added to the buildings. People have asked what it's like to live in a city which is hosting this and the best word I have is surreal. The idea that the whole world is watching the city you live in; that the Commonwealth marathon covers both your own Saturday jogging route and the road you take to the post office; police officers carrying guns (they don't carry them in the UK); the road closures affecting my way to work and just the general fucking energy filling up the city. I can remember London 2012 - which I had considered going to - and despite how convenient it was having the Olympics in the same time zone and being able to 'get' the Opening Ceremony it still felt real that a city like London could host the Olympics. But I had a bit of a "Glasgow host the Commonwealth? Did Toronto not want it?" attitude.
But now it's time for me to write the mushy part: I've mention it plenty of times these past two weeks (and you may have known anyway) but I love netball and even follow it when it's not involved in a major sporting event. And for me personally, getting to see the Scottish Thistles play with the big guns of the world was, truthfully, a bit emotional. I knew going into the Commonwealth Games they weren't going to add to Scotland's medal count but to come ninth when we rank eleventh in the world was phenomenal. I was present at the Scotland versus Malawi match and even though I groaned about a few issues I could see with tactics and game play they showed fantastic sportmanship and they brought it as well as they could and it was only at half time you could see that Malawi (ranked number 5 in the world) were safely going to win it (I also seen the Wales versus South Africa match and, well, SA had that game by the end of the first quarter). Between this and making the world cup in Sydney next year I am so proud of our girls. ♥
And for every other sport - what I love about the Commonwealth and the Olympics is the mainstream coverage of lesser acknowledged sports. My favourite sports to watch (and I have quite a few) rarely get mainstream coverage and I love these events when I can turn on the BBC and see a bit of netball, or volleyball, or BMX, or women's football, or hockey. My parents lived in New Zealand for four years before I was born and they said something they really liked about Kiwi culture was that all sports got mainstream coverage (including sports we might consider pointless). I'm going off on a tangent here...
When it comes to who was getting annoyed at Glasgow 2014 and who was getting excited there was a clear split between people who liked sports and those who didn't. Those of us who are sports fans (even those who didn't get tickets) were willing to put up with road closures and other changes in order to host this but those of us who hate sports just wished the whole thing would go away. But there were plenty of others events going on around the city - more than I could fit in around full-time work - and I spent Saturday mooching around Merchant City at the International Food Festival and at the Irn-Bru shop (a shop that kept the biggest of non-sports fans pretty sweet amongst the shenanigans).
I'm currently rounding this up as I watch the closing ceremony, which is taking place less than 10 miles from where I'm sitting. You might have seen me mention on Twitter but I had auditioned to be in the ceremonies and was offered a place in the closing ceremony, however the rehearsal times clashed with my already-bought netball tickets and I chose to go with the tickets (I still have my audition number as a token though) which after seeing the matches I'm glad I stuck with (but we still need to see what happens in the closing ceremony).
This has all been surreal as hell Glasgow, and it's going to feel so weird now that it's come and gone and it now officially over.
P.S. I also did a vlog of the Scotland and Malawi match over on my miscellaneous YouTube channel which almost never gets updated. I also have footage from the medal matches and some rhythmic gymnastics which I should get up soon.
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