Hairy Situations – 10 Things I learnt Shaving My Head As A Woman

Shaving your head, no matter your reason for doing so – a change in style, charity fundraiser, or tipsy-and-regrettable night – is a major decision. And while typically more men tend to do this at any age, there’s a growing number of women who undertake the challenge too. Despite this, there’s surprisingly little guidance for what having a shaved head (and the consequential buzzcuts for weeks) is like for a woman. This post, listing 10 different lessons I’ve learnt, is about my personal bald experience. Each experience is different, and some of these depend very much on who you are as a person, so take each point with a pinch of salt.

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In Memoriam: Harper Lee

A while back, when Go Set A Watchman was announced and given a release date, I wrote a short commentary on how Harper Lee’s deteriorating health made me highly sceptical of the technicalities behind Go Set A Watchman being “found” (as that is how the publicists are choosing to sell it). Sadly Harper Lee has now passed, and while this is a great loss to us all, I can’t help but wonder what will happen in the aftermath of this.

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The Cirque of the Modern Man

The clowns have come out to play
But the lions won’t jump the hoops
I suppose they had a rough day
So the ringmaster will find a new troupe

The juggler is on fire
And the sword eater swallowed it wrong
But the audience’s applause won’t tire
When the tight-roper has yet to fall

So roll up! Roll up! Here comes a circus
Sure to delight the sinisters inside us,
A macabre show for all the family!
For happiness can be such a bore.

Freeverse can hide depression – so be wary

As a boarding school student, I’ve naturally had to deal with a lot of deep intimate and troubling conversations at obscure hours in the morning. The bulk of these occur in the weeks before a holiday: everybody is just tired and stressed and has way too many deadlines, and on top of all this is getting quite homesick. So we end up sitting in corridors, sipping tea and talking about depression, suicide, death. Granted sometimes we talk about cheerier things too, but these are bittersweet topics like how close we are to our siblings and how brilliant it was to go to the beach that one time with our mums and dads.

Unfortunately, there isn’t always an easy way of saying the more difficult things in life. Fortunately for us, somebody runs a creative writing tumblr account for our school and our sister schools. So unsurprisingly when we are gripped with these nauseating fears and bouts of depression, we go to this site and submit anonymously.

All of this is to say one thing: poetry is not as intense as prose. A quick look through the tumblr in question will show you that most all of these depression related posts are done in freeverse poetry form. But they are written in such a way that you could remove the line breaks and it would make a simple paragraph.

So why don’t we? Because we are used to seeing a heightened sense of reality, what we often refer to as the “poetic feel of a poem”, within these poems. However we use simple prose for more diverse topics, including (and perhaps most commonly) to state things as they are or to give a clear perception of reality as it is. It is a slice of life compared to the poetic slice of ultra-HD life.

To show this I will write the typical poem that you’ll find on that tumblr page. You’ll notice there’s not much too it, very little personal touch despite the fact that it is about what should be a very personal topic.
Falling into darkness

I don’t know how it started

But now I just want it to end

The falling

The darkness

It all leads to 

Death.

You stopped holding me

And stopped caring

So I too stopped

Caring

For me

And now I feel nothing

So nothing I’ll become.


Cute isn’t it? Really dark, mysterious, sort of weird and there are line breaks where there shouldn’t be. You can hear the teenager behind the keyboard trying to be poetic and deep, especially in the last few lines, but it’s not really working well. Then again I could’ve probably published this alone on WordPress and gotten a few likes, because it does feel poignant at parts. But this among a sea of similarly paced and written poems would find itself lacking that tang that makes it garner a few likes here and there. Now look at the prose:

I don’t know how it started but now I just want it to end. The falling, the darkness, it all leads to death. You stopped holding me and stopped caring, so I too stopped caring for me – and now I feel nothing, so nothing I’ll become.

Suddenly I’m on red alert and am sending this person suicide hotline numbers. This person is obviously in a bad state, and needs help – pronto. But even though I got similar vibes from the poem, it was easier to dismiss them because it’s written to be sensationalist. Poems highlight the abstract through over the top descriptions, but we don’t expect the same to come from a piece of prose.

This is important. It’s important because the same emotions are behind these poems and prose, and while the teen writing it may be deliberately overblowing the situation, you shouldn’t be distracted by the structure. Any cry for help, no matter how small or distorted, is a cry for help.

So help the sensationalist teen next time you see one. Please.

Local Man “Read Apple Terms And Conditions”

This is one for the history books, folks. Today, for the first time since records began, somebody read the complete Terms and Conditions when signing up for an Apple accounts.

Ruben, shown above, is an avid motorbike fan and amateur grilled cheese chef, has previously set records for reading the printer set-up manual and following washing instructions on clothing labels.
Jeff Ruben, 33, claims that he is surprised that this is being made a big deal of.”When was signing up, a nice little notice came up asking me to read the stuff properly,” he said in an exclusive interview. “Now, my momma raised me good and proper. So when a little white piece of cr*p tells me to read it properly before proceeding, I’m damn well gonna read the whole damn thing!”
The full reading supposedly took just over a day, which Ruben claims he spent most of hunched over a dictionary.

“They use some fancy *ss lingo in that stuff. I mean, there’re some words there I ain’t never heard nobody mention, not even in them TV shows,” he stated. He complained saying that “while [he] ain’t some hillbilly Joel who lives under a rock, [he] knows when somethin’ been written to not be read”.

Apple CEO Tim Cook is one of many people who has yet to read the Terms and Conditions. Last year he publicly stated that he doesn't know "what the hell those IT kids dump in there", but was confident that they weren't abusing their power.
Apple CEO Tim Cook is one of many people who has yet to read the Terms and Conditions. Last year he publicly stated that he doesn’t know “what the hell those IT kids dump in there”, but was confident that they weren’t abusing their power.

The full document has widespread availability, yet most avoid it, simply clicking to continue. This allows companies to hide clauses that they can later use in lawsuits. Ruben, who followed all the instructions given, claims he did five handstands, drank seven coffees, placed a small ornamental dog on his infant daughter, and had to send a 200$ cheque to Apple… signed in crayon.

Some critics have said that the Apple Terms and Conditions make no mention of this, and that Ruden was quite simply intoxicated and/or on hallucinogenics. However, nobody can be f*cked to actually check the document to know for sure.

 

We weren’t sure what to put here, but we needed to bulk up our wordcount otherwise we’ll be eating gruel tonight. So here’s a duck in a top hat.

This is a work of satire.