Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Chapter 27: The Social Network

Okay, if you're reading this, you more than likely have a social network account. Whether that be Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. You name it and people have it - unless you have no internet or a smart phone in which case, I'm sorry to hear that... or am I???

I'm just gonna say it, social networks are a mixed blessing. On the one hand you get to connect with your friends, capture pictures in the moment, edit them with beautiful sepia tones and upload to your friends instantly and find people you thought you never would, like long lost families. On the other hand, you are at risk of becoming a victim to Twitter trolls, being deleted by people who are on a cleanse or just plain and simply don't talk to you any more (heaven forbid) and you may not get the attention you were looking for, e.g. uploading a selfie: 0 likes and 1 comment saying, "You dyed your hair blonde? I preferred it brunette." Ouch!
Some people don't know what a "Twitter Troll" is, so here is a brief definition:

Trolling
Being a prick on the internet because you can. Typically unleashing one or more cynical or sarcastic remarks on an innocent by-stander, because it's the internet and, hey, you can.
Guy: "I just found the coolest ninja pencil in existence."
Other Guy: "I just found the most retarded thread in existence."
(Urban Dictionary).

I love the Urban Dictionary's definitions, they're ALWAYS on point.

Social Networking can also be used to find out information about a person. Now this could be for good and can easily be for bad and more likely than none, it is seen as 'stalking'. When someone says, "Oh I've looked through all of your pictures" and you have 3000 pictures? Hmmm... sweet if you're in a relationship with that person, but completely deemed as stalker-ish if you aren't with that person.

Here's a list of things that REALLY nark me about social networking sites:

  1. "OMG, I can't believe that just happened!" "Oh no, you okay chick? What's happened?" "I can't say on here." ARRRRGGGHHHH! Don't look for attention, GET attention and then say you can't elaborate on the attention you initially wanted. Two words: Status tease. 
  2. Requests for Candy Crush, Bubble Witch Saga and all other shitty games. Even Liam Neeson's getting pissed off : 
  3. Following clothing range sites on Instagram with nicely assembled outfits and the question, "Yay or Nay?" followed by loads of corrupted smileys with the little square symbols from random Instagram pages in countries all over the world that take up a good few thumb scrolls. My answer is "Nay, you're fecking annoying and now I have thumb cramp."
  4. Following funny "Like" pages on Facebook such as "Will you be on time? Will you be on time? Yes! Oh sorry I'm gonna be half an hour late", only for them to post horrible images of abuse and animal cruelty on your news feeds - this really disgusts me. Instant unlike!
  5. Countdowns to the weekend and the whole, "I'm dreading Monday morning!". This is what I have to say...
  6. Lastly, people publicly arguing on a status/trolling. Leave it out!
If you wanna read some more Facebook don'ts, click here.

However there are pro's to social networking sites like:
  1. Talking to your friends and family and...
Yeah that's all I got.

One of my favourite scenes in a movie is from The Social Network (2010), the biopic story of how, Mark Zuckerberg, created the most popular social networking site to date. Mark is portrayed as a person of sheer honesty, ruthlessness, rudeness and generally very hard up. A solitary man out of his own accord (rejecting anyone he gets close to), he gets sued by two brothers who claim Facebook was their idea and things begin to rapidly go downhill. It's the final scene that's my favourite; we see this straight laced character throughout the whole of the story and all of a sudden, he adds an ex girlfriend who publicly humiliates him earlier on in the film, and is literally staring at the words "Request Pending" and constantly refreshing the page in the hope that she would immediately accept. This displayed the softer side to Mark's character and confirmed that every type of personality can become addicted and dependent on something like Facebook, even if they convey to be above everyone else who openly displays they're gonna "add you on Facebook" or "post" something on Facebook.

Here's the clip for you:


I'd love to know your opinions on social networking. Is it for the good or the bad? Have you ever had any bad experiences? Have you maybe married someone you met on a social networking site or been a victim of trolling? Contact me on the usual places via here, Facebook or Twitter - ironic hey?

Talk to you next week on Christmas eve peeps - happy shopping!
T.

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Chapter 26: Women Have it Better Than Men... When it Comes to Clothes

Hi guys! Hope you are all well this week :). Well! I went to The Clothes Show Live on Sunday with my cousin and her friend Sarah and we had a brilliant time! I used to work at the Clothes Show for four years and it was so much fun to do looking back, but at the time it was very stressful and the hours were long, so I sympathised with the workers there this year.

Now when I worked at The Clothes Show, there were obviously a lot of women there (I would say there would be 2/3 women and a 1/3 men). I also know that a few men enjoy going to the show regularly as it is one of the most well known events in Birmingham and the shows are different a fun every year. However, it was only this year I noticed that there isn't much for men... like AT ALL?! Okay there are fragrance stalls and hair and tan stands (for the odd man that likes a spruce of fake tan every now and then) but for the "Clothes Show", there aren't many clothes for the men to peruse. 

Every year I go, I know what I'm going to pick up. There are sooo many goody bags that are handy for stocking fillers, they're just too good to miss out. Yes, this might be a good location for men to come so that they can treat their girlfriends or family, but what's really in it for the man? I don't know about you ladies, but it gets quite frustrating when you shop with a man, whether it is for yourself or for them. Maybe it's just me, but I like to get in there and get out of there as quickly as possible because I know what I want before I've even step foot in the shop. Also, might I just add... never, EVER, under any circumstances ask a bloke what they think of what you are wearing. Like this for example:


You're setting yourself up for an unenthusiastic response AKA an eyebrow raise or a shrug of the shoulders, or simply a "I preferred that ruffly top I picked out for you earlier". You know, the top that covers you completely? Like this:


Ugh, rant over!

ANYWAYS, I was talking to some colleagues at work and we were discussing Christmas jumpers as we are planning to wear them on the same day and we came to the conclusion that... Christmas jumpers are the only selection of clothing that is better for men than women. Quite sad really as Christmas is only one day out of the year! 

Like I said, when I go into a shop I know what I want before I have even entered the doors. From shops like H&M to New Look, there is only ever a small section in the corner of the room that caters for men. As for Forever21 in the Bullring... the men's section is Danny Dyer! You have three floors for women, including a massive accessories section and what do the men get? A section the size of a Ford KA. Highly disappointing for all you men out there. No wonder you end up buying designer labels! When you can get a bargain it's like finding gold but otherwise, if you're wanting a new wardrobe, it seems like you have to fork out an arm and a leg!

I really wish I had an alternative for you men out there, but the only options I have are:
1. Shop with what little selections they have on the high street
2. Buy designer wear, but not to excess as surely you would want to save designer for special occasions and save the pennies, right?
3. INTERNET SHOP!

The latter is my favourite as you all know, and if I HAVE to suggest the best place to go, I would shop on ASOS 100%. Free delivery and returns peoples!

So when my cousin was here I introduced her to the American Sitcom, Modern Family which series 1 & 2 are now available on Netflix. She found it hilarious as I expected she would and we spent most of the weekend singing this little number... Enjoy:


'Til next week!
T.

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Chapter 25: Wanna Go Catfishing?

I watch a programme called Catfish, you may have heard of it? It's a new programme that developed from a film documentary starring Nev Schulman. It is now a hit TV show on MTV and I'm gunna be frank... I'm addicted to it! Queue the 2010 film synopsis:

Catfish (Film Documentary 2010): Nev Schulman, a talented New York Photographer, develops a pen pal relationship with an 8 year old girl called, Abby - a child prodigy who sends Nev illustrations and paintings of his highly publicised work. However, the pen pal relationship develops to phone conversations with Abby's Mum, leading to online friendships with the entire family, including Abby's older sister, Megan. As Nev and Megan's relationship deepens, hidden truths begin to unfold and Nev starts to question who exactly he is talking to.

I'm not going to reveal anymore, but it gets juicy! The documentary is filmed by Nev's older brother, Ariel Schulman (above, far right) and his friend, Henry Joost (above, middle) whose work includes Paranormal Activity 3 & 4. Since the movie, Nev has decided to make this into a television show, showing every Monday in the UK at 9pm. Now as I haven't revealed what the ending of the movie entails, you're probably wondering what the hell the term, "Catfish" means? Well here goes:

"cat.fish [kat-fish] verb: To pretend to be someone you're not online by posting false information, such as someone else's pictures, on social media sites usually with the intention of getting someone to fall in love with you."

Well! What do you make of that? Have you ever done something like this before or had anything like this done to you? Well don't worry, you're not the only one! As Nev has been in the same boat before, he has had many people all over the world reaching out to him for advice on how to go about meeting their online romances. Nev has now taken it upon himself to go on a mission with his film making friend, Max Joseph, around America to help people find love and truth in their internet relationships. 
Now I'm going to admit, it is very RARE that Nev and Max find real connections that have longevity when they try to help these people out. I have watched both the first and second series so far and there is only one relationship that is still going strong now, Derek and Lauren. You might recognise them as this cute pair: 


All together now, AWWWWW! However, my favourite episode so far comes from Season 2, Episode 14: Keyonnah & (wait for it) Bow Wow. I know, Bow Wow. Fucking reaks of a Catfish instantly! COME ON KEYONNAH?!! I just HAVE to tell you how it ends because you really can't make this shit up... 
BASICALLY, Nev & Max are determined this is a classic Catfish scenario until Keyonnah reveals that he has given her $10K, which begs the question: Is this REALLY Bow Wow??? You all know who Bow Wow is right? Bow wow wow, yippee yo, yippee yay? He's this kid:


Got that image? Yeah? Okay. Brace yourselves... this is who "Bow Wow" turned out to be:


Yeah that's right. A woman. A woman... who looks like a young boy, who uses women on the internet to allure them to sleep with her. Now, Max Joseph is the absolute essence of the programme, he says it how it is. He is the "voice" if you will, of the public. So as soon as this woman/boy/I don't what, claims that she can "have" Keyonnah if she wants, Max HAS to ask, "Well... how???" To which this woman replies with the above and more information that I don't wish divulge in this blog! Like I said... you really can't make this shit up!

I'd love to know your opinion on "Catfishing". Do you think you can find true love with someone over the internet, especially after you have shared wrong information about yourself in either your profession or even worse, your appearance? Contact me on here, Facebook or Twitter and let me know!

In the mean time, here's a trailer from the hit MTV show which can be seen every Monday at 9pm. Enjoy!

                                          

See you next time peoples!
T.