Words & Music

Had a busy week! Tuesday I went out with my friend Laura and my ex-housemate Kirstie (who is travelling around India as of today!) Me and Laura had Nando’s (standard) before meeting Kirstie to go to the Camden Barfly for a gig.  For only a fiver we got to see Supercute and the inspiring Miss Kate Nash in her side project The Receeders.  It was definitely worth seeing and an interesting path for Kate Nash.  Also spotted her boyf Ryan Jarman at the bar.

Last night, after a really stressful day trying to work out PDFs, trying to deal with too many DM boot bids on Ebay and a shift at Sainsbury’s (oh, and after walking in the wrong direction to the venue – typical) I found myself a haven at The Gallery Cafe for The Word House poetry event.  I saw a friendly face in Captain of the Rant, (check out his event, there’s one this Friday I plan to go along to!) and after a quick chat and a rather unimportant embarrassing incident I found myself in, Christian Watson took to the stage.  He was incredible!  I don’t really know what else to say.  It started on a high and that high just did not stop.

The open mic included the likes of Emma Jones who performed her winning set from this year’s Glam Slam (and myself, performing my winning poem from the ‘Loss’ category).  John Berkavitch continued the features and was also amazing, and played with the audiences emotions with a poem that began with a cliché, went forward with comedy and ended with words to send shivers across your skin.  He then told us to read The Empty Space, which is so cheap on Amazon I may have to add it to my huge pile of books to read.  I’m currently reading Doris Lessing’s The Golden Notebook.  It’s massive.

Last up before a dash for the tube (both him and me) was Inua Ellams.  I have said before how lovely he comes across and he is so genuine.  Not only that, but he has an amazing way with words, and also an amazing Graphic Artist. Jealous much.  All in all, a wonderful evening, raising money for Oxfam, yay!  And I even made it home for a late-night viewing of X-factor.

I’ve been working as usual, doing lots of useful and interesting MA stuff (including a gruelling day about accounting) and spent a couple of days with my boyfriend in Norwich, forcing him to come with me to a Feminist Society discussion group, and coming back to his only to watch a rom-com.  Sorry love.  Oh yeah!  And we did Yoga.  About 2 hours of it!  It was really hardcore, seriously, my legs hurt a couple of days later and everything.  Oh yeah, he’s starting up this Sketch Club – if you’re creative in any way, get involved!  I also saw my Gran for dinner with my parents which was a welcome return from the coach journey from Norwich.

Matt made me these cool timetables that you can draw and wipe off.  It’s really good because it gets your mind focused and you feel good ticking things off.  I’ve missed a few things off but I think I’m doing pretty well!  I wonder if I can count my Sainsbury’s work as exercise since it’s manual? Hmmm!




Don’t Cart-wheel on Broken Glass

Last Thursday night LitSoc put on an event with CWS… though actually I think only one of our collaborators was there.  Anyway, this is possibly the last event we’re going to put on, but I’m hoping to put on another one.  I really want to pay the performers but I don’t think we have enough money… maybe on the next!

Anyway, we had to host as a committee (apart from Helen because she doesn’t like public speaking) because our host pulled out last-minute… very unprofessional haha.  We started off with a CWS open mic but the only member that came had to go away for something and so there wasn’t really any of their input but whatever.  I was the “sacrificial poet” first in the open mic and we had a decent number of people get up to read.

The night consisted of Catherine Woodward, followed by Grenouilles, and I was meant to go on then but I cut my set out so the night would run more smoothly (hence why I did the open mic instead).  Then Greta Healy and Hannah Walker gave us some poetry, and Robyn Comfort began with poetry and moved onto music.

Ending the night was Russell J Turner, Ashley Johnston, and Tim Clare.  I was really happy with how the evening went down, but I think I’m getting a bit too comfortable in my university bubble because I had rather too much wine to drink.  I stupidly left mid-way through Tim Clare’s set because a couple of friends were going out and apparently it was a “now or never” situation.  I feel really stupid and guilty for leaving and really regret it.  It’s something I’d be totally against when sober and if Captain of the Rant saw me that night, he’d be saying “now who’s rude? now who’s the dickhead?! hmmm?!”

I guess I got what I deserved.  I ended up at “Nowhere” and somehow was dancing on my own, wondering where one of the people I came with had gone but figuring I may as well just enjoy myself until we were reunited.  I had an urge at the beginning of the night to do a cart-wheel but we were busy setting up so I didn’t.  You better believe repressed urges will come out.  I decided to use an empty space to do a cart-wheel.  Now, this is something I would do sober as well, and have memories of doing it at kid’s birthday parties in my childhood, so I don’t know if I can entirely blame the alcohol for… maybe I can blame the club, or the dark lighting.

Anyway, I did the cart-wheel and I did it on a load of broken glass.  My hand got cut first and so I fell onto the floor and hurt my knee.  I was really embarrassed and rushed to the bar where I told them my hand really hurt and that I “thought” it was bleeding.  I looked down and there was blood going everywhere (including my lovely dress… it’s okay guys, it came out in the wash, thank god! It’s vintage you see).  I was taken to the back room and they got the first aid kit out and bandaged me up, but the guy said that if I cared what my knee looked like I needed to go to A&E.  I remember being quite casual about it because I didn’t think that I needed more than what he’d done, and I didn’t really want to go but him saying that obviously freaked me out…  I didn’t really want a deformed knee.

So… memory blank… somehow I got there.  Taxi I guess.  I waited for 3 hours and had nothing to do.  I had left my poetry and my iPod at the LitSoc event.  I wasted loads of texts and even tried calling my dad, and a friend I’d planned to call at the weekend.  It was past 2am so I didn’t get through.  I bought some crisps and a cookie from a machine.  I felt so depressed and lonely and just sat there for hours until I got so frustrated with everyone being seen apart from me that I started crying.  Not noticeably, just silently to myself.  I just wanted my parents there but they are in London and I am in Norwich.

Eventually I was seen and it was revealed it was a complete waste of time.  I didn’t even need stitches.  They just washed my hand (which had been previously glued) and then put these strips on my knee (which my dad said were butterfly stitches, but still… not proper stitches).  I got an expensive taxi home for £8 and when I arrived at mine at like 5am, the guy wouldn’t stop talking about how Shakespeare doesn’t exist.  I mean, bless him, but at 5am I just wanted to go to sleep before attempting at my busy day whilst being all tired and hungover.

It’s my housemate, Kristy’s birthday today so we’ve just made her fairy cakes and put them on this amazing cake stand we got her from Notty Green.  I’ve been listening to Funeral for a Friend’s new album Welcome Home Armageddon and it’s great!  More like the old stuff, wooo!  It’s been sunny and I’ve been wearing pink jeans and been in a good mood considering my preoccupation with a guy that doesn’t feel the same as me and general loneliness that creeps over me sometimes.  And random waves of panic about my life in general.  Anyway, before I start getting too personal and bitching about other stuff that’s annoying me, I’ll end.


Carmina of the Rant

I am bursting to say what I did not earlier.  I’m writing this at one in the morning but will post it the next day with the appropriate video.

[Edit: Please remember I was pretty drunk when writing this]

Firstly, I have been accepted onto the Creative Entrepreneurship MA at UEA London!  I didn’t know what to expect, felt it could go either way… my housemate Jordi told me via Facebook that the letter was at our house but I was in London.  In case I didn’t get on, I waited until I got back to Norwich, and with my stupid shoes cutting through my flesh I rushed from bus stop to door and tore open the letter.  I was happy.  I am happy.  It’s a peak, but there are still troughs and that happiness is still temporary.  (That’s actually a reference to that day’s Loose Women… oh dear!)  However, I would be devastated if I didn’t get on.

I’m currently listening to Jessie J’s album and I am increasingly irritated.  She has switched from earlier work into an Americanized accent and it pisses me off.  She sounds so much better natural.  Clearly forgetting her roots… and as soon as Price Tag, the first track, plays, it is clearly bullshit.  She has stated in Style magazine that one of her mottos is to ‘don’t cater for the handful, cater for the masses’ which just is the total opposite of what the lyrics in that song seem to say.  She has a good voice, her songs are good, so why put on some fake accent?  America = the masses = money money money. Bring back the mandem, that’s what I say.

Anyway, tonight.  Despite being tired I went to Word of Mouth.  I feel like I need to do anything I can to expose my poetry.  I knew all the acts and the one I was most impressed with (and during the Christmas holidays I gigged at the same place as him and headline act Pete The Temp) was… Captain of the Rant.  To be honest, I couldn’t remember Pete’s act that much and while this time, I do appreciate he was entertaining, I wasn’t sure he was actually a ‘poet’ but he did do at least one good poem… I would call him more of a comedy act though.

The open mic afterwards was good to do, but the main thing for me was that Captain of the Rant and his friends ruined it for me.  A guy I know from UEA’s CWS ranted about the Captain himself, calling him ‘Captain of the Fuckface’ or something… anyway, I was glad, he deserved it and I’d hoped he felt bad, but him and his mates kept on chatting.  As I was impressed with his act both times I’d seen him, I was disappointed in him and I was just gutted to be honest, absolutely gutted.  Amy Wragg commented it was an open mic and that ‘some people pay attention, and some people don’t’ but personally, I think that’s a load of bollocks!  It’s just rude to talk over spoken word, open mic or not. [Edit: Okay, yes, that’s my opinion but if you argue that one has the right to ignore what’s going on, then I argue it’s my right to be pissed off.  However, I just gave a lot of drunken evil eyes.  Listening back to the YouTube video, I think I attempted to make a point by almost screaming some of Claymore.]

[Edit: I have removed a small section because although I found it funny, it could be misinterpreted as rude]

In the words of Scroobius Pip “thou shalt not attend an open mic and leave as soon as you’ve done your shitty little poem or song, you self-righteous prick.”  I know part of the meaning is that these are things we do… but the main thing is to take it on board.  I’m sure talking through other people’s poems (no matter how shitty they are) is included in this sentiment.  I’m understanding more than ever that when you want to do what you enjoy as a career it can become like a chore… I came to this night because I felt I should, rather than because I really wanted to go.  So, I can understand just going and doing you’re bit, but I don’t want to be like that.  I tend to like to make a night of these things by drinking but I know I’ll have to do less of that the more often I do it… financially and health-wise.  I don’t want that to mean I leave early, I want to stay as long as I can and not forget the places that I came from.

I also got annoyed talking to a friend.  Not because of what they said per say, as they are interesting to talk and debate with… but in terms of my own questioning who I am and what I do. I was told at a Farrago event at the start of the year about an event that’s more for “page poets” and I was offended at the implication that I wasn’t good enough to be considered a performance poet.  Then again, this friend thinks I’m more of a performance poet and that not many of my poems are fit for the page… hence the magazine rejections, I guess.  I do like fitting into both categories, and maybe that’s part of the danger, but it saddens me to be told I don’t fit in either… that I’m not good enough for either.

So, I am happy about my MA… I feel I have direction now and I like that, I like setting goals and ticking things off.  I just need to get some money for it!  Please somebody fund me!  I’m trying to look it as an investment!  Anyway, yes, I’m happy but as always, nothing is good enough… I have to push forward still, and things are still pissing me off, things are still getting me down, my heart is still broken, my body is still alone at night and my poetry was about mental illness tonight, so what do you expect?

Okay, so I’m going to stop listening to this album now.  Stopping it on Who’s Laughing Now which is a good track because it’s personal, which I like, and it’s clear despite the stupid fake accent, she can sing.  Also, a lot of the stuff in the Style article was pretty cool, and her speech at the Brits was amazing.  She seems like a nice girl, and to me… talent and personality… that’s what’s important right? 


The Captain has since apologised and can have his hat back.