“if I loved myself, would I take it the wrong way?”: Things I’ve been going and doing – 13/09/015

Roiling clouds of superheated ash surge from Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines National Geographic | December 1992
Roiling clouds of superheated ash surge from Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines
National Geographic | December 1992

I thought I’d write something today because of the sound and cohesive nature of my mind that’s been serving me well lately, which has felt totally magnificent as I’ve felt very capable of doing things for once. For a good few weeks there, a long run for any 19-year-old, I was doing things pretty well and not freaking out about much – which sounds like a huge NBD – but for someone who’s a long-term nail biter, or dealing with undiagnosed bouts of anxiety, feeling a-OK is such a blessing. It’s nice to surf that wave of feeling good for as long as you can.

Of course, as soon as I began to contemplate how well things have been going, it only filled me with impending doom, which is actually a medical condition linked to anxiety.

“Hey man, how you doing?”

“Yeah, not too bad really, although I’ve got a serious feeling of impending doom right now.”

So sudden, and so unwelcome. Although the thing with panic attacks is the fact they take you so much by surprise, yet feel so certain, like – ah, I knew this must’ve been coming.

Anyway, this wasn’t meant to be about impending doom, it just got in the way (by its very nature)

I’ve been very busy over the last few months, something I feel very lucky to have been. I’ve laid my hat in in London (several times), Amsterdam, Brighton and Dorset for End of the Road festival – something I had planned to write about when I got my photos processed – but the photos ended up being so shitty I almost feel like the time is up in terms of doing a huge write-up on it. I have one photo of Girlpool, but being a film camera, it is doubly exposed with a picture of my friend’s clay model of a rollerskate. Which looks actually very cool and I might send it to them as a suggestion for their next album cover.

Girlpool were very very good – I love to see musicians where I can be like, WOW, I love your work and I can so easily learn those chords and get my mate to play the bassline. It’s nice having bands you admire to be very easy to emulate (not putting down their talent, by any means) – but rather inspiring you to pick up a guitar and make music, too.

We also saw Tame Impala, St. Etienne (who played the WHOLE of Foxbase Alpha – gee, whizz) Laura Marling, Alvvays (another guitar band that I can play along with!) and Fat White Family (among others).

We also went to Amsterdam for the week a couple of weeks ago.  As said in my previous post, I reverted back to journal writing during the holiday and it was nice to be away from technology for a bit. I am literally a person that takes social media detoxes! I don’t think I’m ready to accept that.

While away, I continued my ‘supremely enjoyable’ run of writing and wrote two or three times a day.

31 August 2015

“It’s our last day here in the city today. Jack says ‘hi’. We were so lucky with the weather and now it’s raining. Raining hard, the kind of rain you get in Paris, but more stoned. This holiday has been beyond wonderful. Amsterdam is so chill, though, like I know that’s such a cliched thing to say, but it’s true. Generally looking forward to things at the moment, feel very positive about the future.

Hanging around this city has the same atmosphere of being at a festival, but with no real pressure to see any bands, and a less likely possibility to stumble upon a Fatboy Slim set (unless, of course, he is holidaying as Norman Cook). I feel good about writing, and almost content about the fact I can be doing this for my whole life. It feels very satisfying. Not even to make money, but in the more basic sense, i.e I will have the ability to write as long as I have a pen, something to write on, and am not crippled with the inevitable arthritis that runs in my family.”

That ending almost reads like a line from Morrissey’s Autobiography.

Write again soon!

T.A.L x

Let your hair down this festival season! (Or shave it off, whatever, no one cares)

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It has been in magazines since probably FEBRUARY.

“Get ready for festival season! This boho dress will have you partying until the early hours. Ted Baker, £250.”

For three months have I endured reading heartbreaking stuff about festival fashion. Festival beauty looks. Top tips for festivals. It makes me feel all weird, like laughing at something cause you thing it’s a joke, then receiving serious looks from french-brainded, bindi-stuck, chiffon-clad girls.

Such propaganda! It’s like these brands are trying to sell yet more shit to us on our (just above) minimum wages, with this promise that you’ll look like Kate Moss or Kendall Jenner (who was recently heralded as a ‘bad girl’ as she stuck her middle finger to a camera during Tyler the Creator at COACHELLA!) Rock n roll!

What’s weird about this pseudo-advertising is that, luckily, it’s not like this at all. Not at British festivals anyway.  

In fact, some of the most stylish things I’ve seen at a festival include a mother dressed as Princess Leia holding her baby dressed as Yoda, a man in his pants and thigh high white leather boots listening to Bon Iver, of all things, and a man with his arms straight up in the air at the Stone Circle for like two WHOLE days, as he thought he was a milk bottle and didn’t want to toppled over (okay, I only heard about that one but still – if that’s not style, I don’t know what is.)

So here it is! I’ve milled over these ‘tips’ for the last three minutes and have deemed them worthy enough to be included in this (not so) extensive list.

1) Don’t wear white  

This is more of a tip for general life. I don’t even think I will be able to wear white on my wedding day, since I hear there is usually cake, and a lot of wine.  In an unintentional slip last week, I bought a gorgeous white knitted dress (think Stevie Nicks) intended for Glastonbury, and then proceeded spill Diet Coke on it as I took it out the bag to look at it. Just don’t wear white.

2) Wear white

Or better, do, and wear your stains with pride.  My favourite ever Belle and Sebastian top has cider, wine, and beer stains down it, and I proudly wear it – telling disinterested people the Stories Behind the Stains, like they’re tattoos I got whilst travelling around the world or whatever. Be true to who you are. Without you, stains would know no life.

3) Break up with make up

Now I can’t reallly comment on this as I don’t really have a make up routine, bag, etc – but surely it’s a ballache putting make up on in a field right? Surely it is putting it on every day, right? (Stay with me.)

My usual argument to this is – there are no mirrors at these places – because if there were, people would find a way to do coke off them. You’re not even gonna see yourself all weekend – which makes the first mirror look at home even funnier! (Usual scream at the sunburnt, muddy-faced stranger looking back at you, with tiny eyes and huge pupils.)

Here’s something you could try out for the weekend. Come get us, boys! (NB: You won’t be able to get this off for weeks, so prepare yourself for shifty looks at work, as you swivel around on your chair scrolling through Facebook photos, deep into the comedown.)

Tara’s Beauty Look for Festival Season:

You will need:

1)Moisturiser with SPF (​You can usually get this from your Mum’s drawer)

2) Glitter (​A quid from Poundland. Or someone else will have it. Do it on budget and ask at the next tent. What? That’s like a quarter of a pint!)

1.Mix whole bottle of glitter with tub of moisturiser.

2.Apply twice daily.

Et voila!

Mucky-faced with the dirtiest nails under them acrilix
Mucky-faced with the dirtiest nails under them acrilix

4) Snap happy

Not wearing make up is a suggestion that is often met with the response of people saying – but photos! I need to look good in the photos! Which is true, you have to look great in the photos.

Ways to looks great in the photos:

1)Do a Kendall Jenner and flip em one, girls. That way people will think you don’t care about your sweat patches, mascara-face and cider stains. It’s like we’re at Coachella!

2)Pull the most hideous faces possible, so you can be like “Haha! God, I guess I don’t look great when I pull such ugly faces! (as opposed to) “Haha! God, I must have been reeaaallly drunk in that one!” Make them ALL look bad. BE BAD.

3)Alternatively do just get so drunk you think the flash of the camera is a lightning bolt, and you’re the resurrection of Ziggy Stardust, who is a fictional character anyway, so maybe you’re just a recycled idea, and [continue this way of thinking, ideally with joint in hand – much more functional than a clutch bag, or whatever shit they’re trying to sell us in magazines]

There are solutions to all the problems if you sit and think about them guys. The best one’s will always be the candid ones, anyway – that one of you putting your welly on or pissing in a bottle. Or doing both. Ah, 15 days.

4) Factor 5,000,000

Now, here’s where I’m gonna assume the role of ‘Mum’, but sun cream is so important at places like this – it’s well worth preventing sunburn/stroke (much easier to prevent than trenchfoot, which we’ll come to later.) As glorious at that whole day of sunshine might seem, being all crispy, drunk AND sunburnt is total hell and makes you convert to drinking water over cider, and will make you say terrible things like “How about we all just chill here for a while and watch Ben Howard?”

Your friends will be literally horrified by this severely out-of-character behaviour and will consequently rush to the FRANK water stand to get your free water bottle filled up.

Then you, all sunstroked and floaty: “Is this vodka? I need vodka.”

Passing out from sunstroke is like failing your driving test for parking up on yellow lines – there are way cooler ways to do it.

5) Soak up the D. The vitamin D

Because after all, if we get sunshine, heaven is on Earth – and you’re already in.

6) Stuck in the mud

You’re going to get trenchfoot. Don’t Google it, but you will get it. With 15 days to go, it is worth booking an appointment with your GP now for when you get home.

Welcome to the silly season! Go forth and PLAY.
Welcome to the silly season, baby! Now ignore all my tips and just go PLAY. 

Glastonbury 2013 (a terrible intro post- there will be more to follow)

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I got back from Glastonbury on Monday, and I’m still riding on that high as much as I possibly can. I’ve been in a constant good mood since I’ve been back, filled with the new-found sense of ‘Hey, maybe everything isn’t actually so shitty and at least I can come to this every year!”

It’s hard to explain when you write as badly as I do- especially because there are just vibes and you get to talk to everyone which is something that is actually pretty hard to do normally as people are too quick to shiftily start tapping away at their phone when they see my big, lonely puppy eyes eager for conversation. Anyway, it was so incredible, and I got a tan, and I saw Johnny Marr & the Stones, and met some wonderful people and a new found zeal for life (and particularly summer.)

I’ll post some photos up soon- once my film’s decided to end (Lomography film is literally never ending —therefore perfect—-)

I got in a suitably nice amount of trouble back at school for going, but I would get expelled to go again. (it’s on rock n roll but i like it)

CAN I STOP WRITING NOW? can I stop torturing you? Let’s pretend this never happened