Archive for the ‘Musings’ Category

I’m having a crisis of conscience. Ah, crisis crisis!

I’ve just been reading about how bad sanitary products are for the environment. This is something I’ve always known deep down but have been avoiding thinking about because they make my life easy. Also because the alternatives scare me.

The more I think about it now though the more it dawns on me that I’m nothing but a big hypocrite. I claim to believe in recycling and organic farming, yet every month I buy inorganic chemically produced plastic sanitary pads that I then throw into a bin to be thrown in turn into a landfill somewhere. I can only imagine how horrible those landfills must be and will be for a very very very long time.

It’s a  difficult cycle to even contemplate breaking. I am very much a product of my upbringing. I use the same brand as my mother, the brand I first used at the age of 12 when ‘auntie flo’ first started visiting (I have no problem saying the word period but I heard this phrase the first time the other day and thought it was hysterical).

I’m tentatively considering buying some reusable pads, such as lunapads. They’re re-usable pads made of fabric. After you’ve used them you wash them. It all sounds potentially very messy. Hum.

Another alternative are Natracare products which claim to be ‘chemical and additive free, and biodegradable and contain only organic and natural ingredients sourced from sound ecologically managed producers.’ That sounds a little less scary. Maybe I will go for them as a first tentative baby step to being a better person.

I found a good looking site where you can investigate all kinds of reusuable and biodegradable pads here. They also sell mooncups and menstrual sponges.

I will definately buy some from here but the question is which am I brave enough to try?

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I got a phone call earlier today from Amnesty International reminding me that my membership runs out in less than 2 weeks!! Shock horror!

The dude on the phone didn’t tell that immediately though, oh no. First he congratulated me on the success of their no violencing women campaign. Apparently 175 women in the UK get raped everyday. And the UK government has just signed….something….  to start taking the whole matter more seriously. I was pleased but confused that amnesty felt the need to phone me personally about this. After all I HAD written to my MP about it but they neither knew this nor could I see it having made THAT much difference. But then ‘Dave’ cleared it up for me by asking for money.

Oh he really wanted me to set up a direct debit. I refused, mainly because I can’t guarantee my account has money in each month. Also because there was no way I was giving my bank details over the phone to someone who had phoned me. How did I know he was really from Amnesty etc? This is paranoia, but I don’t think unreasonable paranoia.

When did charities get so pushy? I support amnesty, I think they’re great, they don’t need to phone me to remind me. In fact if anything after the phone call I’ve started wondering why they need the money at all. I can’t really see that anything they do really needs money. They don’t give money to anyone. They seem to mainly rely on letter writing. As a member they’ve never given me any free stamps or writing paper or anything.

Charities are just getting too pushy. I feel like I’m being stalked. Not only do I get stopped constantly in the street (I obviously look studenty enough) but they come to the house and phone and NOW the ones I DO support are clammouring at me for even more attention too. It’s too much. It’s like an overly possessive lover who just won’t let you out of their sight! They constantly guilt trip you into doing what they want.

Sorry Amnesty but I do see other charities too. Just because I haven’t sent you any cash recently doesn’t mean I’ve forgotten you. I have enough love in my charity bag for more than one but maybe not enough in my wallet. It seems that charities these days value money above all else. Which is a shame as I think money is the least (though easiest) I have to offer.

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The problems of anonymity

When I started this blog I decided that I didn’t want to use my real name.  This was for three main reasons:

*Secret identities are fun

*I didn’t want psychos randomly trawling through the internet to know who I am

* If I put my real name then the people I’m close to and write about could also be identified and that’s unfair on them

The problem with putting your real name on a blog from the start is that you can’t take it back later on.  It’s fine if you’re already in the public sphere but if you’re a little nobody like me then I have to think carefully before doing it. Who knows what the future may bring. I might want to be a politician later on. Considering that this blog is just me blurting out whatever is in my head on each day it seemed better in the long run to use an alias.

Anonymity in short seemed a sensible way to go.

However some problems have arisen. I want people to read this blog. When I first started it I excitedly told several close friends and my parents. So it’s not 100% anonymous. And then my parents have also told people. Sigh.

My father mentioned in passing the other day that my grandparents thought the blog was weird and not like me at all. I didn’t tell them about it, he must have. That’s fine but I’m becoming increasingly aware of who my audience is. Should I tailor what I write about because of this? I’m beginning to yearn for the freedom real anonymity would have given me.

My mother told me my post about a dream I had (where I was setting C up) was too personal. I don’t think so. It was only a dream.

The dilemma came to a head the other day when Amnesty International invited me to a conference in London for survivors of Tienanmen Square to talk about their experiences. It’s media only and I’ve been invited because I signed up to their ‘Blogproject’ which is a series of e-mails about important issues they want people to blog about.

This spun me into indecision. It was ‘invitation only’ and so therefore presumably I’d have to give them my name. I ummed over it for a while and replied with my real name. Now I have to decide if I should go, should I start a better more ‘amnesty-minded’ blog, or continue as I’m going? It’s a conundrum.

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