Tuesday, 31 January 2012

tuesday morning

So I'm done with school. Almost. Not quite. But we're definitely past the beginning of the end. (I don't know quite how to feel.)

Lately I've been doing voluntary work in the presidential elections. I've been queuing for concert tickets at arse o'clock in the morning. I've been spending quality time in the library. All in the midst of enormous piles of snow and harsh winter sunlight.

(And yesterday I got to see Ultra Bra live, as a result of all that queuing et al. And it was. Just. You know? Pretty much the best thing ever.)

Saturday, 28 January 2012

still alive for you

Lovers by Jarek Puczel

I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet. 

Mahatma Gandhi

Thursday, 26 January 2012


I grow old... I grow old... 
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled. 

Shall  part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach? 
I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach. 
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each. 

I do not think they will sing to me. 

I have seen them riding seaward on the waves 
Combing the white hair of the waves blown back 
When the wind blows the water white and black. 

We have lingered in the chambers of the sea 
By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown 
Till human voices wake us, and we drown. 

T.S. Eliot (from The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock)

Wednesday, 25 January 2012


I wish I were far away and yet I don't.

Tomorrow is my last day of school ever and that thought alone is so spectacularly odd and wonderful that it will keep me going through the feet of snow and the darkness.

I feel like I'm stalling and not making much sense but at the same time I'm moving at such a speed my head can barely keep up with my feet. And occasionally I am happy. That's enough for me, for now.

I'm thinking thoughts that are deep and silly and writing essays until my hand hurts and my knuckles turn silver.  I have posts sitting in my drafts that are long and detailed and I might rustle up the courage to publish them soon. Soon-ish. In the meanwhile I hope you're all feeling flabbergasted every day.

Monday, 23 January 2012

monday links (feminism, mainstream-ism, obama, presidential elections, etc.)

Carole BrĂ©maud's paintings are my new favourite thing. 

Oh goodness am I caught up in these presidential elections. (The Finnish ones, not the farce that is the Republican election in the US.) I'm going to blatantly push an agenda here and tell you to have some of this.

My links this week are a bit of an odd bunch. In my defense, I've been dancing around since last night because of all this elections excitement.

Speaking of which, oh Obama. You make me happy when skies are grey. 

And on to an excellent blog post on how to reply to anti-feminist comments.

A brief history of sexual liberty. (Did you know the first so-called sexual revolution took place in the 18th century? Because I sure didn't.) 

Also, I adore Adele. A simply ridiculous amount. I don't care how mainstream that takes me. I'll go wherever she leads me. All my victory dances since yesterday have been backed by this. (Although, this article about the New Boring, also known as the Beige Age, does have a point.)

(My apologies for such an odd concoction of links. Politics do odd things to your higher brain functions.)

Saturday, 21 January 2012

things i know but don't yet understand #5

Better a broken heart than no heart at all. 

(From the 2011 Doctor Who Christmas Special)

(So you know how sometimes the simplest words formed into the simplest sentences to communicate the simplest thoughts somehow reach out and knock at your rib cage and you kind of have to catch your breath for a moment because it's spectacular how honestly truths can be told?

This is one such example. From Doctor Who. (Again.) And I don't care how unintellectual it may be to quote a sci-fi show, because somehow Doctor Who manages to bowl me over time after time with things like this, the quiet wonderful sentences that somehow squeeze their way into my consciousness and lodge themselves in the folds of my brain, only to be recovered months later, when they make me choke up with remembrance.)

Friday, 20 January 2012

silly things

This feeling dropped into me like a stone while I was wading knee-deep in snow, 
this longing for warmth and summer. 

(Also: oh my goodness Ben Howard.) 

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Greeting cards routinely tell us everybody deserves love. No. Everybody deserves clean water. Not everybody deserves love all the time. 

Zadie Smith: White Teeth

(So you know how I'm in love with her sentences?) 

Monday, 16 January 2012

monday links (gingers, languages, new york, new york)

It's been a while since I last managed to shuffle together a deck of links. But here we are, with some truly spectacular essays and a bit of Carey Mulligan thrown in for good measure. Enjoy.

First and foremost, my great love, the ever charming online quarterly The Junket, has a new issue out. So far I've fallen arse over tea kettle for The Red Headed League by Ed Wethered 
(a somewhat tragicomic account of living with red hair) 
and On Not Being Jewish by the brilliant Thomas Marks 
(I suggest going through his back catalogue if you haven't already done so). 

The history of English in ten minutes. (Oh yes. I adore this with ridiculous zeal.)

Speaking in Tongues by Zadie Smith explores the significance of how we speak. (Spectacular. Honestly.)

The multitalented and consistently amazing Carey Mulligan singing New York, New York in the new film Shame. (Heartbreaking and haunting and so beautiful.)  

(Also, I've managed to lose the source of the photo. If anyone knows who took it, I beg you to tell me.) 

The past is always tense and the future, perfect. 

Zadie Smith: White Teeth 

(A bit too clever and punny but oh goodness I love it anyway.)

Thursday, 12 January 2012

One could almost climb into his sentences, one could almost fall asleep in them. 

Zadie Smith: White Teeth

Wednesday, 11 January 2012


I'm fine, I'm just not happy. You know?

It's just there are too many things to do, studying above all, and I just. Can't. Bring myself. To do it.

(But being fine is something to be grateful for of course.)

I feel dingy and tired and keep pressing my cold fingertips onto the blue veins beneath my eyes to stay awake. I hope things'll be better soon; in the meantime I'll probably be staying offline for a while. Just to wrap my brain around my history books.

Monday, 9 January 2012


My mother took a picture of me talking about the architecture, hence the Silly Hands of Enthusiasm.

Example of aforementioned architecture.

Me trying on the most beautiful shoes in the existence of time. (Far, far, far too expensive. Unfortunately.) 

Amsterdam was everything I'd dreamt of and more. My first day was spent in consistent awe. (I've seen beautiful cities before, but this? I was not prepared to lose my heart so fast and so permanently.) My mother and I kept stopping every few metres to sigh at the beauty of everything. Winding our way through narrow streets, incredible winds and the incessant tolling of church bells, dodging the most reckless cyclists I've ever seen. It was, in short, spectacular.

(Now it's all school and studying again, long days spent girding my loins for revision. It was the best thing possible to get away from it all for a few days, to visit Van Gogh and Anne Frank and then return feeling a bit more like a person than before.)

(My mother took all the pictures, I was too lazy to bring along a camera. 
So thank her, that is if you indeed wish to thank anyone, for the visual evidence.)

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you're wonderful, and don't forget to make some art - write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself. 

Neil Gaiman 

(The weird thing about this new year is that I have absolutely no idea where it'll take me. 
After the coming May, all bets are off.)


Tomorrow my darling mother and I head off to Amsterdam.

(Things I'm most looking forward to: seeing all that Van Gogh up close and authentic, ambling about the streets and enviously looking at all the houseboats, visiting the Anne Frank House, stuffing my face with food every chance I get and maybe doing some shopping too.)

Oh, Amsterdam. Don't you just love the way the name rolls off your tongue?

Sunday, 1 January 2012

2011: a musical retrospective

Adele: 21
Alex Turner: Submarine EP
Arctic Monkeys: Suck It and See 
Bon Iver: Bon Iver 
The Decemberists: The King Is Dead
James Blake: James Blake
Noah and the Whale: Last Night on Earth
Regina: Soita mulle
Scandinavian Music Group: Manner
St. Vincent: Strange Mercy
tUnE-yArDs:  w h o k i l l
Veronica Maggio: Satan i gatan 

(Honorary mentions
Asa Masa, King Krule, Azealia Banks, 
The Antlers, Beyoncé and Eleanor Friedberger)