Byronic.

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Byronic: Characteristic of Lord Byron or his poetry – [of a man] alluringly dark, mysterious, and moody.

Get your affairs in order.

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It’s a bit morbid for a Friday freebie, but here’s a label for a little notebook everyone should have. I use mine to stipulate my last wishes. But also to write letters to the people who matter to me, which is actually quite a life affirming exercise in gratitude. I have no superstitions about an afterlife but I do want to leave something behind for the people who helped and loved me throughout my life. Something positive. Something not to grieve about and I make sure to include something in each letter that I know would make the recipient smile a bit.

A prisoner.

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I identify strongly with this quote. People often say “it’ll get better” or “things happen for a reason” and my personal favourite “it can only go up from here”, which is just indicative of a lack of imagination. It’s all bullshit. Many goodhearted, lovely people die alone, suffer pain, get screwed and many shitty people prosper. I am definitely not an optimist, but I am a PRISONER of hope. Hope is just as narcotic as depression, the two can be very close and equally misguiding. Hope, expectations, disappointment and so on. Optimism is an affliction. It teaches us that if you are not happy there is something wrong with you, you “lack faith” or you need pills, for example. When in reality no one is promised happiness and few achieve it. Most who do stumble upon it by pure luck, sheer randomness or hedonism. I highly recommend the latter.

The 1975.

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I love this band and for a solid year they’ve been making me feel all sorts of cool and sexy. Today’s post is a tribute to The 1975 and the things they make, and the ways they make music. And make music better.

Chocolate, my most favourite:

“dressed in black from head to toe”

The City:

“don’t call it  a fight when you know it’s a war” 

Girls:

“Well, shouldn’t you be fucking with somebody your age instead of making changes?”

Sex:

“We’ve got one thing in common, it’s this tongue of mine.”

Heart out:

“God I love the way you love yourself”

Somebody Else:

“Fuck that get money”

Superwomen.

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I would like to start the new year with a special thank you to the women who held my head above water when I was drowning. 2015 wasn’t an easy year for me and I’m not the easiest person to get along with. Well honestly, I’m a horrible friend. I cancel dates last minute, I give home made gifts, I pretend I’m not home when someone “pops by”, I don’t answer the phone, it takes me days to reply to messages and I generally have a bitchy attitude. I also suffer from irrational anxiety, I’m suspicious of everyone and I seem to attract bad luck like flies to a corpse. And that’s when I’m in a good place.

I haven’t been in a good place. I’ve never had a circle of girl friends. I don’t drink wine, and I’m not a great listener, in actual fact I’m a bit of a chauvinist. But not having a BFF never bothered me. Probably, an only child thing, and most girls are untrustworthy lovers of gossip. Looking back I realise that I hit bottom last year, I was in denial at the time but it was probably quite obvious to the people I allowed close to me. Thanks to a few awesome women I survived – despite my very best efforts. They forgave my fickle behaviour, stuck by when I pushed them away and helped in meaningful big ways. Whether it was drying my tears, giving me money, feeding me, even Valentine’s gifts. They distracted me when I needed it, made me laugh when Corne and Twakkie would fail, and told me the harsh truths when I refused to participate in life. Y’all have been mothers, sisters, caretakers, psychologists and cheerleaders.

Baie dankie aan Mikke, Anika, Hanli, Loraine, Chantelle, Siske, Shane, Letitia and last but not least Michelle. Ek sou nie 2016 gesien het sonder julle mooi siele nie. Ek hoop ek kry die jaar kans om daar te wees vir julle, soos julle daar was vir my. Ek het elkeen van julle fokken klip hard lief!

It’s a jungle out there.

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A tribe is different from family. If you’re a little odd around the edges, your family learns how to deal with it because the chemicals and codes your biology share tells them that your survival is important. Your tribe is made up of people who share your specific flavour of freaky. These people see what you try to hide and they don’t flinch. They chose to keep you around. They could leave… but they don’t. That means something. It’s so comforting and life affirming to feel someone celebrate your joys with you and understand why you get emotional about what matters to you. I highly recommend it. Frees up a lot of time spent explaining yourself.

I learned the following when I started finding my tribe: Firstly, they tend to move in groups, whether it’s an action cricket team or a book club, they’ve probably started assembling already. All you have to do is what you already like doing, they like that too, so they’ll be there. You’ll know when you meet kin because they speak your language. (My tribe, for example, speaks a mix of profanity, cynicism and sarcasm.) So most importantly, just be yourself hey. If you pretend to be someone else you will attract someone else’s tribe, and trust me, trying to fit in with the wrong tribe is the loneliest feeling I’ve known. It can drive you crazy, take you to some real dark places and convince you of strange things like “YOU’RE the weird one”. But once you have just one more member of your tribe the relief of being able to just do you is very liberating. It really does “take a village” and with the right support and some true understanding you can start living among your natives instead of struggling to survive among strangers. Suddenly, even negotiating with an entirely alien tribe (like in my case, people who “don’t read”…I can’t even…) becomes a cinch, because you’re not insecure about being so very obviously different. Not fitting in doesn’t mean you’re gonna feel alone forever, but not being yourself will most definitely make you feel lonely.

The machinery is always going.

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If you sleep. If the gears keep you awake, eventually they turn slower and creakier and heavier and more labourious. So the noise and the effort adds to the lists of things that go bump in the night and that keeps you from real rest. … but I would rather go mad from sleep deprivation than stop the works and walk around empty.

Touching bottom.

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“You gotta touch the bottom before you can come back up”

*This post is dedicated to a dear friend who suffered a devastating loss yesterday. My heart breaks for you and what your family must be feeling. Love you gnomie.

Heartless.

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There’s a difference between being heartless and using your heart less.