Dear Conservative politicians,
Just so you know, I take enormous pleasure in ordering your books to the British Library and reading them there, instead of buying them from a profit-making bookshop. (I take less pleasure in having to read them, but that’s a story for another day.)
Studious in north London
“REAL puffed rice doesn’t make a noise when you pour milk on it.”
So that’s me and my poxy Rice Krispies told.
Today, I worked for 10 hours on my PhD, cycled 5.5 miles home, where I cooked dinner in a flat so ill-ventilated I am currently drying out my table salt on the radiator, and will now do another hour or two’s paid work before bed.
I idly found myself thinking how nice it would be to have enough money to be able to afford to take the tube and join a gym. Huh.
Wow! A recipe that uses the EXACT things I have lying around half-finished in my kitchen! I should use more recipes from blogs I find by googling weird combinations of ingredients.
By some accident of circumstance which I don’t fully understand and definitely didn’t anticipate, I appear to be not entirely skint, at least in relation to the epic levels of skintness I was approaching earlier in the summer. I am also owed a whopping amount of money, which is nice, but also I have to remember to prod people to pay me, and all I want to think about is the damn dissertation, so it’s kind of a mixed blessing. And one of them is the Client Who Never Pays Me.
Anyway, now I am marginally-less-skint, I am taking my place in the adult world by acquiring material possessions. Because, according to my dissertation, buying stuff is how you become a ‘citizen’ in contemporary UK culture. Yeah, I probably need to edit that a bit. Some of the stuff I’ve bought is legitimate stuff I ‘need’ and haven’t been able to buy until now (thanks, epic skintness!), and some of it is just flagrant materialism. Anyway, this has taught me several things:
- If you drink at lunchtime, spend all afternoon on Oxford Street, and then none of your friends come to your birthday party, you will buy CRAZY things. Like cropped, burnt orange corduroy jackets. And TOO MANY SCARVES. So many scarves… And you will go over your budget to cheer yourself up, and then you will get home and get confused, because you feel like you should have more stuff than you actually have, because the whole thing was so stressful you think there ought to be more pretty things to compensate. And then you will have an epic case of buyer’s remorse for days. But not actually take anything back because Oxford Street.
- Then, you will have to buy things like black jersey dresses on ebay, because you didn’t actually get any of the sensible things you said you ‘needed’. When you buy things on ebay, you think it over and are strategic, and check your online banking, and then when stuff arrives at the door it feels like someone has sent you a nice surprise. Win.
- Also, sometimes the ebay stuff arrives when you can’t get to the door and then you get a bonus trip OUTSIDE. Which is novel.
- The shoes that you spend actual money on because they are black, pretty and flat but support your feet and are therefore a good investment? They will hurt. In fact, Next, they should be called ‘Heavenly soles… but bleeding heels and blistered toes.’ And they look so innocuous! The cheap, second-hand shoes you buy on a whim from ebay because they look a bit like the shoes the people on your favourite academic style blog wear? They will be blissfully comfortable. The world just works like that sometimes.
- The only time you actually get so into your dissertation that you become oblivious to all else will be right when the auction ends on a pretty bag that would be big enough to fit your laptop in. The only time. Fact.
Today, I left the stage of thinking ‘argh, argh, I do not have enough words, argh’ and seamlessly transitioned to the stage of thinking, ‘argh, argh, I am already three quarters of the way to the word limit and have not said anything of interest yet, argh, argh’.
This is, I suppose, progress of sorts.