Not All Old Men Are Pervs

It has recently come to my attention that something needs to be said in defence of 'old' men - that is the teenage definition of an 'old' man; any man above 40.

Saturday evening at Glastonbury Festival with my Dad and brother, struggling through the mud and the Adele crowd we head to our campsite. A 'young' woman of approximately 26 is drunkenly obstructing the path. Leading the pack single file Dad carefully navigates the small gap, he puts his hands up to shield himself from her unpredictably flailing arms. 'Excuse me don't touch me' she shouts in my Dad's face, erupting in some sort of aggressive rap routine, her friends scowl at my Dad unaware he's with us. Dad being sensitive and not one for conflict he quickly walks on without looking back, he doesn't say anything about the women's misreading of the situation but it has obviously put a dampener on his evening.

I think of defending my Dad with 'how dare you speak to my Dad like that', but conclude Dad would prefer to walk on. Later I think about how often that happens to him, if it does, how often it must happen to men of his age. I think about the woman and hate her for instantly assuming the worst and then I think about what I would have done in her situation... and I realise that i'm not sure. Perhaps after a few drinks and faced with a stranger, a middle aged man, who I assume is too close to me by his own doing perhaps I would fire some abuse.

Why? Because that's the narrative - 'old' men, and now all men according to Andrea Leadsom are pervy. As a 21 year old woman I'd be hard pushed to find anyone who thinks I'm 'pervy' for squeezing through a festival crowd, why should all men over the age of 40 suffer such a horrible stereotype.

So next time you forget to smile back at an 'old' man, don't thank him for holding the door open, don't return polite conversation, consider that you are likely the one in the wrong.

And yes I have started smiling at 'old' men.

Dear Diary,

Sometimes getting over excited and not being able to sleep is annoying, tonight it's proving productive for blog ideas. By over excited I mean wired on coffee. Who knew a large flat white from Starbucks at 3pm was enough to keep me up til 2:45am!

Second day of summer diet started with 'Brunch wiv boyf' at the calorifically & financially indulgent Clerkenwell Workshop Coffee around the corner. Would recommend the Almond croissant along with the chocolate doughnut to anybody and everybody. OH SO GOOD. The rest of the day stuck to salad and soup so I think I got away with it.

I then did a pretty decent amount of revision, came up with lots of blog ideas for the future and here I am, suddenly hit by the sleep wall, going to sleep right now.


Dear Diary,

Two weeks of interning at The Sunday Times is over (blog post coming soon), which means I have no option but to start revising. Somehow the prospect of slogging away at an unpaid internship, for which you are unlikely to get any immediate recognition (other than a distant glimmer of employment), seems 100x more appealing than furthering my knowledge of Politics, Current Affairs, Russian, Journalism Skills and the History of Journalism for these exams- hence why I am writing to you.

Iv'e updated my LinkedIn profile - #profesh, sent thank you emails and hopefully made it up to my boyfriend for acting unreasonably. Now all that's left is work... wish me luck.

In other news, I am procuring a hamster, or rather my friends aged hamster of 1 1/2 years is making the journey down from London to retire in somerset for the rest of it's natural life (as long as my mum doesn't read this first). We're not sure how long it has left (100 days approx.), in which time I hope to custom build him a home, Victorian bird cage style. I'm also going to rename him Ziggy.

Edit: Mum said NO HAMSTER because i'll be travelling, dreams shattered.

Is Print Journalism Dead?

When the notion of becoming a Journalist first popped into my head, my vision of success wasn't being published online amongst thousands of... well, unprofessional blogs like this one. The pinnacle of success I  aspired towards was to see my name roll off the printing presses. Ask any writer and their view is likely to be or have been the same. But now is a time for change, i'm taking print off that pedestal and you should too. With declining print sales it is no longer the way to reach the mass audience.

Print is declining as the world of Journalism continues to change, a notion we are constantly reminded of here on City's BA Journalism course. However it ain't that simple, as proved today at City's '#cityuisprintdead?' lecture. Here's a short snap shot of the points that stood out from todays speakers:


1. 'The Independent is the first proper newspaper closure since 'Today' in the 80's' - Dominic Ponsford (Editor of Press Gazette)
The future of Print Journalism has had bad press the last couple weeks surrounding the closure of The Independent's print publication. And yes, as a young journalist it is rather daunting to see the flop of what feels like yet another print publication, but as 'pro-print' Dominic Ponsford reminded us: the Independent is the first 'proper' newspaper closure since the 80's.  That is of course discounting the naughty News of the World and hundreds of regional papers.

2. 'why do successful local newspapers go on to launch print publications...because it's easier to make money from print'- Dominic Ponsford (Editor of Press Gazette)
Ponsford addressed the 'myth' that there is no money to be made in print.

3. Dominic Ponsford on the benefits of free print:

4. An analogy of the state of print from journalist Jane Singer:


1. Journalist Sarah Lonsdale pointed out the design prowess of today's online publications vs. 'smudgy newsprint'
It's not about the romanticism of print anymore, it's about the success of online publications. Sites such as 'illusion' and The New York Times are achieving etherial design magic through their online publications by seamlessly combining video footage with articles. This level of design prowess can simply not be achieved on 'smudgy newsprint'. 

2. Harriet Swain's cut throat truth:
3. Harriet Swain's comment on the efficiency of print journalism: No more paper clippings in the mail from granny.
4.   Sarah Lonsdale's prediction on the next decade:
Lonsdale predicts that The Guardian will stop publishing Monday-Friday print editions within the next decade or less.

Here's what the audience had to say about the 'pro-print' argument:
It's hard to ignore the sense of impending 'print' doom flying around our journalism community here at City University London, but perhaps we should recognise our journalistic tendency to catastrophize events and accept that we just don't know how the next decade will pan out for journalism. Many people thought TV would be the end of Radio...

10 Inexpensive places to take your Mum/Family in London

So Mum's coming to visit and you want to show her a good time without making her pay for everything. Here's where to go...

1. Camden

There's nothing mums love more than a silver jewellery stand and in Camden there's no shortage. The Vintage shops along with the lively buzz of Camden will help you to convince your mum you're not living in a faceless city all alone. Grab a box of curry from the market or a vegan treat from Cookies and Scream.

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2.Covent Garden

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Neal's Yard:

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Restaurant Recommendation: 

Souk Medina, the best Moroccan restaurant in Covent Garden. (3 courses for 4 people without alcohol approx. £80-100)

Bar Recommendation:
The French House, Soho, Francis Bacon's favourite pub that only serves half-pints. A good bit of London history, short walk from Covent Garden. Usually full of artists and arty types.

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3.Brick Lane
This one's for the ex-Londoner mums, they've seen it all back in the 80's/early 90's but regenerated Brick Lane wasn't quite as cool back then. Brick Lane is now over run with fashion students doing what they do best (being ultra-cool). If you like vintage clothes and bagels this is the place to go.

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And if your Mum likes cereal as much as the Hipsters of London you can head into the Cereal Killer Cafe for Brunch.

4. Oxford Street & Carnaby Street

There's really nothing better than a shopping trip with the right person. Head over to Oxford Street for Topshop and many other brands flagship stores. If you're feeling fancy pop into Liberty's and soak up the designer feels.

5. Primrose Hill
For those who want a view of London without paying for a London Eye ticket, Primrose Hill is the answer. Great views both day and night with a small hill to burn off all the treats you've doubtless been eating. Short walk from Camden. (Nearest Tube Station: Chalk Farm)

6. The Sky Garden
Another inexpensive view of the city at the famous 'walkie talkie' building's Sky Garden.

Bookings must be made in advance but the experience is free.
Monday - Friday: 10am - 6pm
Weekends: 11am - 9pm

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7. St. Pauls Cathedral
Although it's not cheap to go inside... (Adults: £18 Students: £16) it's still worth a walk around the outside even if you're not willing to stump up the cash. It's located just across the Thames from The Tate Modern and The Globe Theatre which makes it an ideal stop on a little 'culture walk'.

8. The Saatchi Gallery
So it's likely you've been in the Tate Modern one too many times by this point. Why not head over to the historic King's Road and view the famous collections of Charles Saatchi (Nigella Lawson's Ex Husband) for absolutely FREE.

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9. Hyde Park
Depending on the weather and how much exercise you feel like doing Hyde Park can be a lot of fun. Hire a London famous Borris Bike and cycle your way round avoiding the swans. If you feel like it you can even hire a Pedalo.

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10. Portabello Road Market

Vintage eccentricities and yummy food in the one and only Notting Hill's Portabello Road. Better in Summer like most markets. If you prefer only food (fair enough) head to Borough Market, London Bridge.

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Now that you're armed with quirky sightseeing knowledge of London... Good Luck with your stress free family day out. :)

Having my way with words.

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The physical act of typing, (especially on a mac, praise Apple), gives me great satisfaction. I believe this is down to my neurotic enjoyment of having total, perfectionist control over the keyboard. Every word that slips through my fingers is somehow a happy accident, that can be erased, edited or expanded on. This means I can express my creativity with complete editorial control. Once sufficient words are on the page I can relax, in the knowledge that the rough inkling of a beautifully sculpted phrase or paragraph fluttering round my head has been preserved adequately enough to never precipitate back into brain fog.

As a younger person my efforts to edit my 'live self' brought me regular anxiety as of course it's not possible to do so without a massive sacrifice of character. Today I find a lot of comfort in editing my words on the page so I feel no need to do so in 'real life' and as most people do as they get older, I generally care less of what others think of me and more of what I think of myself. I hope the next step is inevitably caring less about what I think of myself, although what I think of myself could be the route of all productivity, so maybe not.

I am writing this to preserve the way I feel about writing. As a writer I believe writing about writing is crucial in understanding why you write. Well thats enough. :)