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Showing posts from June, 2016

armchair centre back :: french kiss off

i'm guessing that the english international football team has a wicked collective sense of humour. who else would give us the comedy gold of getting bounced out of the euro tournament scant days after their country voted to leave the e.u. not merely that, but they got sent packing by iceland, a country that, one commentator observed before the game, has a population roughly equal to that of the english town of leicester. [can we just take a moment to salute him for that singularly appropriate comparison?] social media, never a body to look a gift horse in the mouth, exploded with satirical rage, which was not less funny or biting for being predictable. as it stands, referee mark clattenburg's calm and decisive handling of the violent outburst of croatian fans during the croatia v czech republic game will certainly go down as the best performance by an englishman at this year's euro.

worse yet for english fans, it's not like they can even take out their righteous anger …

making faces :: inspired by "sirènes"

one of the benefits of having frequent bouts of insomnia is the fact that i eventually get frustrated and start hopping around the internet like tigger through the hundred acre wood. i say that's a benefit because, aside from listlessly glancing through sites i frequent during waking hours, or trawling social media for interesting things to read, i spend time perusing youtube, where i can let the algorithms guide me in my search for something to ward off a boredom-induced anxiety attack. [and yes, i know that i shouldn't be looking at the internet when i can't sleep, because i'm just making it worse, but there's only so long i can lie there with my eyes closed, pretending that i'm just about to fall asleep any second now.]

recently, youtube thoughtfully recommended a seven minute short film by obscure belgian filmmaker emile degelin called sirènes. degelin worked mostly on documentaries, but he did make the occasional foray into narrative film, mostly in french…

mental health mondays :: the long hot summer

it is that time of year, when the piercing screech of teens at the high school across the street no longer fills my ears as i sit here typing. and not for the first time, this sweet oasis of silence [although, i must admit that there is a truck either filling or drilling a hole in the road directly below me]... this sweet theoretical oasis of silence leads me to think about how much time i have and where i want to direct it on the blog. and, as has happened before, i've decided to give mhm a little vacation.

it will return, as it has before, in early september, unless there's something over the summer that i just have to write about immediately.

i figure that, with a couple more weeks of euro [and man candy], the u.k. imploding, the u.s. election drawing ever closer, and everything else that goes through my mind on a regular basis, i'm going to have plenty to keep me occupied. [oh, and there's also a writing project that needs some attention, related to this post.]

in…

english brexit

as the flood of emotion rolls forward in the wake of england's vote to leave the european union, it's clear that it is going to take a long time for wounds to heal. it's also clear that things remain [maybe not the best word to use, under the circumstances] very unclear. no one knows exactly how long it will take britain to back out of the e.u. up until last night, representatives of the "leave" campaign were quick to point out that the prime minister could either begin the official process of negotiating with the e..u. the terms of withdrawal [and saying that he should do so immediately], or that he could really speed things up by simply repealing the parliamentary act that joined britain to the e.u. in the first place. this morning, when britain has no prime minister and the pound sterling on fire, everyone is quick to emphasize that it will, of course, take years before the final split will take place.

those who awoke feeling good better about the future of t…

how to write a '10 best' article

i recently re-posted one of those "top ___ essential albums" for the noise genre on my facebook page. i don't normally do that, but in this case, some of the choices were legitimately interesting, if questionable. as i'd hoped, it generated debate about its obvious oversights and its surprising inclusions, rather than the usual reaction such lists get. usually, the response is fifty shades of "this person is a fucking idiot" and, while a lot of the time i agree with those sentiments [at least as far as their article/ post is concerned], there seems to be little point in sharing something just so that people get angry about it. my friends have enough to be angry about without me making it worse.

my post did, however, spawn a couple of discussions about how exactly one should go about making such a list, given that music [or film, or books, or virtually any sort of cultural artefact] is something on which people hold both very strong and very subjective opin…

if you leave

this post should properly be tagged "world wide wednesdays", because it's not a mental health mondays post at all [unless you consider international politics to be a form of madness, in which case you might be onto something]. i haven't done a www post in a while, simply because i haven't had the blocks of time free to put into researching and writing them, but there is one issue that i wanted to address and i didn't want to wait until wednesday the 22nd to do it. so here is the non-comprehensive but well-intended more like space guide to the brexit.

when i first heard about this story, i thought that the newscaster said "breakfast", which seemed bizarre. i know that the british take their breakfasts pretty seriously [as seriously as the heart attacks they cause], but it seemed excessive that they were having some kind of national referendum about a meal. then, of course, i figured out that they meant brexit, which is the successor to grexit, which…

armchair centre back :: ultraviolence and underdogs

so, ten days in, and we have a sense of how euro 2016 is unfolding. or unravelling, as the case may be. the entire event has been marred by some of the worst displays of fandom in recent memory, including bloodletting in marseille and a steward nearly getting his hand blown off while trying to clear the pitch of firecrackers. i'm not sure what this is supposed to accomplish, but it's more or less amounted to several teams getting sanctioned by uefa and threatened with outright disqualification if there's another incident in any of the stadiums with their fans. of course, it also raises questions as to how, amidst all the supposed security, fans have been able to smuggle in explosives, especially in light of the fact that both uefa and the french police have been bragging about foiling a terrorist attack aimed for the belgium v. ireland game. [you know, it wasn't all that long ago that the terrorists in that equation would have been from ireland.]

[side note :: the peo…

making faces :: sweet and savoury bites

as i mentioned in my initial review of bite beauty's amuse bouche lipsticks, there are some new shades that have been released for summer. the collection, featuring six new shades is called "sweet and savoury", three that fall into each 'camp'. the sweet shades are lighter and softer. the savoury shades are intense and deep. i've heard different things about the status of these shades: some say all are limited, some say all are permanent, still others say it's a mix, but even then, i've heard different things about which are the limited shades. it's all very stressful and confusing, because i wasn't sure which shades i should pick up to ensure i didn't miss out.

in the end, i selected two, which was difficult, because in this small collection, bite has managed to overcome the one niggling concern that i had about them. i've mentioned before that the biggest reason i don't rush out and buy every single bite lipstick is because i fi…

mental health mondays :: fundamental

oh boy. there were a whole bunch of topics that came to mind over the last two weeks, based on scientific articles i've gone through, or stories that have shown up in the news, or just interpreting things that have been tossed around on social media, but finally, it comes down to the horror of last night in orlando florida. this is something that's rattled around in the back of my brain every time i've heard about someone going berserk in the name of christianity, islam or anything else and i feel that it's something that needs to be addressed both publicly and within the psychiatric community: is religious fundamentalism a form of mental illness?

that might sound like a scary gauntlet to throw down. after all, most societies are organized around the principles of religious belief. for instance [and à propos of the attack in orlando], many people have difficulty accepting homosexuality not because it is dangerous or unhealthy [factually speaking, it is neither, unless …