The Redundancy of Ideology

The Redundancy of Ideology

by Peter Davies

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with you by my side.

I wish to rise to rays of sunlight seeping through the curtains, with you by my side.

I wish to lay in bed listening to the early birds, with you by my side.

I wish to take a stroll in the cool sunlight of a summer morning, with you by my side.

I wish to have endless cups of coffee on the front porch, with you by my side.

I wish to sit under the heat and get tan, with you by my side.

I wish to sip on ice cold lemonade, with you by my side.

I wish to hear the tree leaves rustle as the sun leaves our sight, with you by my side.

I wish to fall asleep reading at night, with you by my side.

I wish all of this not knowing why, but that’s okay with you by my side.

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I’d rather be in denial

My excuse for not being a fully functioning human is always growth. Perhaps I’m endlessly lying to myself and this is me in full bloom. Nonetheless I’d be horrified if that were the case. What is left to live, if this is my full extent. I’d rather be in denial.

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My favourite words of wisdom from Ngozi’s, ‘Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions’

  1. Because you are a girl, is never a reason for anything. Ever.
    It is especially never a reason to stop you from chasing your dreams, passions and aspirations.
  2. Language is the repository of our prejudices, our beliefs, our assumptions.
    There are so many mundane phrases that are inculcated in our daily lives, which imply that men are the superior gender. Most of the time we do not even notice their use. Nonetheless, they play a determining role in our learned-behavior and in societal norms. They send a confused message: “Man up”, for example, while implying that men are stronger, it also construes an image that failing to act in a certain way makes one weak, or “feminine” which is apparently not a desirable look for men. Not only is “manning up” belittling the female sex, it is also advocating toxic masculinity. We must also not forget that language is what we use to think; we cannot think outside of or without the use of a language, which also reinforces this idea that it is the repository of our prejudices, beliefs and assumptions.
  3. Feminism and femininity are not mutually exclusive.
    Feminism does not require you to embrace all of any of the qualities attributed to femininity. You can be a feminist, and be of the male sex. You can be a feminist, and favor non-binary gender.
  4. A father is as much a verb as a mother.
    Fathering a child is just as important.
  5. Being a feminist is like being pregnant. You either are or you are not. You either believe in the full equality of men and women or you do not.
    Anyone who believes that a woman is just as much a human as a man is a feminist. Anyone who believes that a woman has the right to a voice is a feminist.
    You cannot believe that women should have the right to vote, but also believe that it’s okay that they get paid less to do the same job that their male co-workers do; that does not make you a feminist, because that belief is still totally sexist. There’s no such thing as “partial feminism”.
    To be honest, this reminds me of Aziz Ansari, when he was on David Letterman in 2014: “If you believe that men and women have equal rights, if someone asks if you’re feminist, you have to say yes because that is how words work. You can’t be like, ‘Oh yeah, I’m a doctor that primarily does diseases of the skin.’ Oh, so you’re a dermatologist? ‘Oh no, that’s way too aggressive of a word! No no not at all not at all.'”
    (Please note, Ansari’s take on feminism on the show is not flawless.)
  6. Periods are normal and natural, and the human species would not be here if periods did not exist.
    Preach! Honestly, I am yet to understand why periods are taboo. Or why, if a woman is feeling grumpy, or is frustrated and angry about a situation it must be because it’s “that time of the month”. Explain to me the logic of why a woman cannot get angry unless she’s on her period? Do women not get exposed to the same world as men? While a man can yell in bad traffic while running late, does a woman not get exposed to this traffic? Does she live in an alternate world where nothing pisses her off? And if she is pissed off, must she be on her period?
  7. Never speak of marriage as an achievement.
    Marriage always seems to be taught as a milestone in a girls life; it almost seems like we are born with the dream of wearing a white gown in front of a large crowd. But it’s not a milestone; marriage is not a requirement.
  8. The knowledge of cooking does not come pre-installed in a vagina.
    Relevant: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pgmx7z49OEk
  9. There must be more than male benevolence as the basis for a woman’s well-being.
    I do not even know how to elaborate on this. Short and concise. We aren’t a  pity party. We are humans.
  10. Women actually don’t need to be championed and revered; they just need to be treated as equal human beings.
    Adichie continues, explaining how there is something patronizing about this. It’s true, I agree. And funnily enough I am exposed to the “championing of women” on International Women’s Day the most. Sometimes companies go out of their way to make ads, advocating for sexual equality. But often, those ads just end up being a weird patronizing two-minute video-clip of how women are heroes and no one should forget that. Nope, that is not we were asking for. Not asking to be heroes, not asking to be angels, not asking to be queens, just asking to be humans.
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There is always a light at the end of the tunnel

The Oxford dictionary definition of tunnel is as follows: 

noun

  1. An artificial underground passage, especially one built through a hill or under a building, road, or river.

    ‘a road tunnel through the Pyrenees’
    ‘the Mersey tunnel’

A tunnel is, by definition, a passage. A tunnel is a means for moving through or past something. A tunnel is a device, if you will, that has been implemented to get from one place to another; or from one situation to another. A tunnel represents progress, it represents a transition, a movement, a change of state or mind or place. And change means that if you persevere, things will be different. Things will not remain the way they are. They never do, because change is an inherent part of our lives. So maybe life won’t always be a walk in the park; sometimes it’ll be a walk in the dark but that doesn’t mean that darkness is the ultimate constituent of your life. Maybe it just means you’re going through a tunnel with poor lighting.

There is always a light at the end of the tunnel.

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on confronting your fears/not letting them be the death of you/and letting your problems metamorphose into butterflies

The idea that I am not good enough is going to be the death of me.

I do not mean this literally. But, the idea that I am not good enough, not smart enough, not different enough, not similar enough, not pretty enough, not kind enough, not thoughtful enough – these ideas of just not being enough that consume me – they are going to be the death of my spirit, the death of my joy. They are going to drown anything and everything that gives me a glimpse or a glimmer of hope in a sea of doubts and fears. They are stronger than the belief that I am strong enough to overcome my unconfident self. They are stronger than me. And yet, they are me.

I am my fears. I am my doubts. I am those thoughts that creep up on me when I’m lying alone in bed. I am the reasons I don’t want to wake up in the morning. But most of all,  I am the most judgmental person on this entire planet – no, in this entire universe – except that I only direct my judging eyes at the reflection I see in the mirror.

It’s funny, not too long ago, I wrote about overcoming and becoming; I stand by it. But it’s just funny how while you can be building up one muscle and overcoming one thing, you can be destroyed by another, and the process still repeats. I keep reminding myself “it’s got to get bad before it get’s good“, and I know that it will, and I will keep focusing on the positives no matter what those night time thoughts say. This post is just me being self-aware. It’s me realizing the thoughts that consume me, it’s me acknowledging that 90% of them are in my head, and it’s me promising myself that I will keep at it, even if I don’t meet all my goals.

I said it before, and I’ll say it again: a caterpillar does not metamorphose into a butterfly overnight.
Just as a newborn baby takes two months learning to lift their head without help, four months to be able to roll over, six months to sit upright, nine months to stand up, one year to walk, and even then it takes them almost a decade to fine-tune these most basic survival skills. If I learned how to survive in ten years, and learned how to skillfully survive and achieve goals in the following ten years; I think I deserve some more time to fully master the art of adulting.

It’s okay that I’m not okay. It’s okay that I feel confused. It’s okay that I’m openly talking about thoughts that are eating my mind. They are my thoughts. They are a part of me, they are me. And, I am going to embrace them, and hug them until they metamorphose into big beautiful butterflies and just fly the hell away.

 

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This week I’m listening to

 

Well, duh. This doesn’t come as a shocker. At least it shouldn’t. I spent more or less 90% of my free time from ages 11 to 17 fan-girling about the Jonas Brothers. I had a wall covered in posters of them. I had all of their albums. I watched all of their movies, TV shows, YouTube videos, you name it. I tried desperately to follow their every move (it was way harder back then with no Instagram stories and few celebrities were really into Snapchat – tough times). I went to their concerts. I went to their concerts 10 hours early, just in case I’d catch a glimpse of them.  You know, just standard, basic fangirl activities.

So, give or take a decade later, you can only imagine all the mixed feelings: nostalgia, excitement, boyband syndrome squeakiness,  the “OMG I can’t believe this is actually happening”-feeling, etc. I honestly feel a little bit like I’m 14 again (thankfully I don’t look like I’m 14 again, because puberty is not a look that you want, it’s a look that you have to endure).
Plus, I love this song. It’s strange, because it’s a totally different sound – at least it feels like it’s a totally different sound in comparison to late-2000s Jonas Brothers material, and yet it still makes me exhibit all the fan-girling symptoms the same way they did way back.
The song is new, it’s fresh. They’re fresh. They’re (re)new in many ways. They look good. They sound good. And yes it’s going to make you cringe, but I’ve given you a fair warning and cannot not say it, so here it goes: I’m a sucker for it all.

P.S. I realize this post’s title makes it sound like I’ve been sharing what song I’ve been listening to on a weekly basis for the past 6 years, but those of you who have been around for long enough will know that I did sort of keep that routine going for a while. And while I have not been very loyal to this none-journal-blog, I still wanted to remain faithful to the idea of  the “This Week I’m Listening To” posts.

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The secrets you keep are your loneliness

The secrets you keep are your loneliness. They are your solitude.
Sometimes they’re your anxiety, and sometimes they’re your peace of mind.

They are the walls you build between yourself and the rest of the world; your fortress.
Your fortress is sometimes your stronghold and sometimes your fragility;
Sometimes an arena to dance freely in, and sometimes an ocean of burdens you’re drowning in.

The secrets you keep are always your loneliness.

 

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Treasure chest

I remember enjoying your smile.
I remember enjoying your company.
I remember how that evolved
Into missing your smile,
And craving your company.

I remember butterflies.
I remember sparks.
I remember sunshine.
I remember rain.

I remember it all.

I miss it all,
And I wish that we could go right back.

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2k19

I feel like 90% of the time I usually start the year with a post regarding the new year and new year’s resolutions and how it’s a new beginning, etc. Then again, that’s not such a high percentage considering I do not share posts on a regular basis.

Nonetheless, I don’t feel like it this year. Pretty plain, pretty blunt. I don’t feel as though life has been treating me all too kindly lately – it has, ahem..uhm, killed my vibe. And so, I don’t really feel like making a super appreciative, hopeful and pro-life post. Not only that but also, despite liking new year celebrations very much, I feel like it’s another sad excuse we humans have created to realize that the sun rises every morning and that some of us are fortunate enough to wake up to it. The date changes every twenty-four hours. Every 30 to 31 days the month changes and every 365 (sometimes 366) days, the year. And every day is a new day. And every day is a new beginning, a new chance. In the words of Nina Simone, “it’s a new dawn, it’s a new day, it’s a new life for me”. So celebrate everyday you wake up! Because some people don’t get to.

Some are sick. Some are lying in hospital beds. Some are living in places where freedom is not something they can take for granted, but is something they have to fight for everyday. Some are dreading waking up, because it means they will have to hear their stomach groan with hunger once again.

If you are reading this; if you are able to read this, you probably have a lot going for you, pal. And that’s something to be grateful for. That’s something to be happy about, and not just every 365 days – every 24 hours, every minute, every second!

I sometimes find it despicable that we get together with those we love every year and celebrate the new year by slashing the sky with ostentatious fireworks. I mean, in a sense, even that is incredibly inconsiderate of those less fortunate, of all the city’s pigoens and seagulls and stray cats and dogs… of this kind and humble planet, Earth.

So much for a non-hopeful and non-appreciative post about the new year.

Happy twenty nineteen.

And still; no one’s getting any younger.

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