We all know the phrase survival of the fittest? Its a darwinian theory and the believe behind faschism , and the creation of the nazis. However a lot support it. The idea that the top of society are there in their rightful position because they are the strongest individuals and they deserve it and the bottom are there again correctly in their position because they are weaker. I do to some extent believe this theory. I beleive that the poor are. Yes. Weaker. However is that not the desired outcome? Is the aim of the upper classes not to keep the poor weak and oppressed to stop them rising up against them? Life is competitve. However I do not beleive in justifying greed. There is no trikle down to the bottom. We’re worse off than we have been in years. To my full power I believe I have seen enough of the shit to come to bevelive in this. In the bible (not that I’m christian) It says the poor will always be with us. But isn’t poverty like anything else free to fluxtuation and improvement or worsening. We deny revolution can be done. But it can be. It’s been done before. I’m a bit of a robin hood character myself I belive more needs to be taken from the rich to give to the poor and yet presently it seems the other way round in that the rich are using the poor to make themselves richer.
She watched as the rain pounded off the tile roofs of the houses opposite, the water running down the rusted drain pipes and small lucent droplets collecting upon the telephone wires. The orange brickwork was dampened, the drains below overflowing flooding the pavements with brown murky sewage. The sky above was ashen, the barren grey mixed with black smoke pouring from the chimneys. She felt very alone as she huddled on her worn felt armchair in her small bedsit a lank tartan blanket draped around her shoulders. It was Saturday her day off, a day of the solitude of four walls and the depression that leached on a moment of idleness. She sat with a cheap fashion magazine open upon her lap but the words kept blurring and she’d drift off into her own mind a lot. There was a bang on the door “Ay Ann you coming out!” the familiar sound of her friend wrung out awakening her senses. She looked down at what she was wearing and felt at the state of her unwashed hair. “Open the door” her mate demanded thumping on it again. She quickly grabbed a clean looking blouse throwing it on quickly, fumbling with the intricate buttons and pulling on a beige knee length skirt, before running to get the door off the latch. Her friend stood their pouting her bright red lips unimpressed. She looked good as usual tall and slim with long legs and short artificially curled ginger hair. “You coming to the pub.” Ann felt run down and for a brief moment she wanted to deny the offer but nodded in agreement pushing through the wave of fatigue. “aye” she said “just let me put my boots on “she let her mate in. Her friend glanced around her small dim bedsit in disgust. “We need to get you a man this place is dingy” Ann shrugged she’d moved from a woman’s hostel into here twelve months ago. She rented it off a private landlord and new they’re could be a lot worse places to stay. Yet the isolation of staying on her own wasn’t good for her health and some days she’d go into herself stuck on her own for nights on end. She pulled a hair brush through her mangled dry hair trying to tame the frizz. Her friend lay lounged out on her bed spectating her attempt with a look of dissatisfaction on her face. Ann ran her fingers through her hair pulling it back and securing it with a bobble. Her friend came over to assist picking up a small slight kirby from her bedside cabinet. She came face to face with Ann and used her slim fingers to smooth back the hair and then scraped the sharp kirby across her scalp securing the stray strand. Ann shoved on her worn boots, the outside of them was a faded discoloured brown and the material in the inside had worn through at the heel so that the hard leather rubbed at her skin.
Ok so this is a bit of a self absorbed one and slightly weird. I’m sorry. Anyway I wanted to write a letter to my 18 year old self (hopefully your still alive) I’ve seen this done before. Anyway I’m gonna write some goals and questions and in a years time I’ll answer them.
Dear 18 year old me your an adult YAY hows that working for you? How is everyone are you still keeping in contact with your friends thats been going well lately is that still good hows the family?
ok first things first
- Are you stable is your health okish? Please say yes it’s been going ok at the moment is it ok? Maybe it’s great you never know.
- Has the world been destroyed? If so you may not be able to answer this one but has there been a war are you still here?
- Have you completed your first year of college , have you stuck in maybe even sat some exams. Pleasssssssssseee say yes. If so be proud of yourself because if you’ve actually managed to do this that is amazing.
- Have you got your T In the park tickets booked is it on this year? If so your going !! I don’t care how bad your health is every Scottish teen goes to T in the Park.
- Have you got some money , maybe even a job or is that slightly too idealistic.
- Are you still living at home. Probably yes but if your brothers finished his HND you might be thinking of moving into his flat ? Are you thinking about it?? Are you thinking about your HNC ??
- Have you been out drinking yet ? Got drunk ???
- Have you started doing your driving theory you said you’de give it a year until your stable and then go for it , so you don’t have to be stuck on dingy buses so please stick to this!! Go for it.
- Have you finished the Ian Rankin Inspector Rebus series? Probably not there are a lot of books.
- Hows that peice of writing coming along? Hows writing in general?
- Are you still a virgin ? Probably yes lets be real.
- Hows the blog ? How many followers do you have ?
- Are things overall better?
Alexander Millar is a scottish artist who creates painting on Scotlands working man , he says in an interveiw he bases his art on working men that he grew up around in the 1960s who worked in industries like the Glasgow shipbuilding and mining and all wore caps , and that his art is a tribute and remberence to them. I read an article about him in the Scotsman back in January but it was not I stumbled upon his art on Google images that I realised that was who it was.
I’m not hugely into Art myself and don’t have much knowledge on the subject (If any knowledge on the subject) but as I’ve matured as a writer I’ve found that I also wan’t to base my work on industrial Scotland as it’s where I’ve grown up and have the most knowledge and connection to , so I look for any other art forms that have had the same idea as me and managed to do this , and Andrew captures the fine details so well it does take your breath away a little. I think also as I don’t have much knowledge of art it almost makes it better as you look at these paintings in complete ignorance and wonder how anyone can have the skill to create something so beautiful.
My favourite (that I saw on google images) probably has to be this one. The colours give it quite a rustic haunting effect , and I think there was something quite sadening about the polluted river in the picture that struck me. Also the whole picture seems quite ghostly with only the houses and one man cycling away in the distance and the dark shadowy colours. To me it almost symbolises present day scotland , as most of our industries have closed down and we kinda now live amongst an industrial wasteland which is what I took from this picture.
I think this one is his most famous repspectably so. I love the detail in this picture like the leaning telephone pole and factory chimneys in the background. Also the fact that all the men have fags hanging out their mouths and almost look identical highlights their identiy and position in society. I also love the warm colours in this picture which contrasts with the mens clothing and the way they all are looking at the ground perhaps reveals how hard they worked or maybe it’s even an expression of sadness or hoplessness as this could be them walking home perhaps even for the last time.
This one is called “Take The High Road”. I love the bridge in this picture as our bridges are such a huge part of Scottish Identity. The man in this photo could also be a tribute to those men who built the bridges. I’m not sure what the steps in this photo mean or the man standing at the top of them the picture itself is called “Take The High Road” so perhaps by him putting the man at the top of the steps it’s almost showing how big a contribution this man and men like him made to Scotland and how big a contribution Scotlands industry made to the world.
Like many of your average scots I am a supporter of the Yes movement. Despite my criticism of the SNP I would firmly tick the Yes box as I believe every country should be entitled to govern itself. However, the main reason I am so critical of the SNP is because a lot of scots tend to put a halo around the party. You have to remember their a political Party. They sit in a nice cosy parliament suited and booted sipping on their lattes and filling in paperwork. They are not revolutionaries. Nicola Sturgeon is not marching the streets proclaiming that you put down your tools and don’t go to work until you have a pay rise, or screaming in landlords faces about rent charges and homelessness, or peering through everyone’s window to make sure that all social housing is comfortable and safe and a decent place to live. She is not walking into every school in Scotland and making sure the less well off pupils are building the future they deserve and getting to sit the exams they should be , she is not walking into hostels and foodbanks and apologising to all the people who use them. They make mistakes!!!! They have flaws!!! They have ignorance’s!!! They can consciously be deceitful and neglectful like any other government!!!! They exist in a capitalist country, their not heroes they have not made our country perfect of even progressed it much since they have been in power. Right at this present moment in Holyrood they WILL be neglecting something or pulling money from some Scottish service.
The reason I say this is because even though I support the Yes movement. I voted for a labour candidate in the council elections to govern my local area. The reason being Is simply I believe they will do the best job. The county where I live has always been a labour strong hold, this year labour have still remained in power over our community. Which I’m happy about as I believe they will do the best job. My fear is that everyone is jumping ship on socialism for the idealistic idea of nationalism. We’re abandoning are past , abandoning the radicalism of Red Clydeside and any radicalism of any sort. We look up to Nicola Sturgeon as a feminist figure. But we forget our history we forget some of the first female political figures like Mary Barbour who was one of the first female councillors and formed the woman’s housing association. She fought tirelessly against rent increases and helped stage protests to stop woman being evicted from their homes while their men were at war ( The police and Government supported these evictions) and helped push for some of the first social housing in Scotland after WW1.
Coming from a family of firm labour supporters it does feel almost disloyal to completely abandon the labour party. It seems Socialism and radicalism are almost turning a bit old school in Scotland with a lot of the youth supporting the SNP. Yes you could argue things have changed now Red Clydeside was before thatcher for example and it’s understandable why we would want away from are supposed friends the English who closed down all of our industry and thrust half of Scotland into dismal poverty , and who now still keep Scotland weak , oppressed and suffering.
Yet in among all the Support for the Yes and fierce defence of it , it does seem a shame that , that has forced us to turn are back on socialism and our more rebellious roots.
I recently started to listen to the album Puzzle by Biffy Clyro whilst I was on holiday and so far I’ve enjoyed it very much. It is one of Biffy Clyros older albums (Released in 2007) although personally I find I enjoy a lot of artists earlier albums the most and this is definitely the case with this album. I don’t know why this is? Perhaps it’s because a lot of earlier art is more raw and stripped back , or the artist isn’t holding themseves to anything (and it probably hasn’t had as much money and easthetics poured into it) , earlier work always seems more natrual and of a higher quality in my experience anyway. A lot of the songs in this album were soft rock with simple lyrics and the whole thing seemed to fit together very nice and tidily (Almost like a puzzle)
My favourite song off the album is folding stars. Mostly because the tune and lyrics have been ratling around my head since I first listened to it and this is usually a sign of a good song.
Next would have to be “Get Fucked Stud” this song has a little bit more heavy cords although I love the bit near the end when the guitar builds up and he just sings “Get Fucked Stud !!” really loud it resonates with me on a deep level as theres a lot of things and people in my life I feel this way about hehe. 🙂
The last song I love off this album is “Machines”. I actually started listening to this song last year around this time it’s such a nice gentle song which reminds you to appreciate life and I don’t think you can listen to it without it touching you.
I put both of these up because the audio version and the music video version of this song sounds different so you can decide which one you like better. 🙂
Over the tarmac hill we rumble
Amongst the sea of rapeseed fields.
With hunched backs and crinkled smiles
Hopeless silhouettes collected together on dampened bus seats.
Kirkcaldy lies just ahead
A town stood amongst the remains of coal dust.
Where once there was a promise of wealth for all
Hope Snuffed from the everyday man
by the bitter dead end of industry.
Cracks plastered over in the digital stream
A future generation of idle idealists
Deluded to the mess.
Under the arch we stoop in our stuffy double decker Skelton.
Through the moulded edged window, you can glance
At where Sea field used to sit.
The resting coal dust lies beneath
A housing estate for the destitute rich.
Yet the warm glow spreads from stranger’s eyes
To disguise the dampened corners.
and sooth the ever-closing fears that linger
under blue tinted finger nails.