Let’s Start a Revolution! (playlist)

Happy Wednes…wait wait wait, I just can’t do it today folks.

Yea everyday is supposed to be a happy day or something but I am really angry and you should be too.

Being an American abroad I am painfully aware of my nation’s reputation outside of our boarders especially after the results of the November 2016 presidential election.

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My face when Trump was declared the next president of the United States.

Regardless of where you stood before the election, now that he has taken office he has done some objectively questionable things for someone who is supposed to be the leader of the free world. Some examples include but are not limited to:

All this doesn’t even begin to touch his litany of flagrant actions regarding control of the press by ordering the EPA to remove climate change statics from their site, his intention to cut safety regulations by 75%, nor his reinstating of the Global gag rule which bans international NGOs with US funding from providing abortions or providing information.

Don’t get me wrong ALL of these things horrify, disgust, offend, embarrass, and infuriate me.  However one thing that has me deeply worried is his pick for the head of the FCC: Ajit Pai.  Ajit Pai is against Net Neutrality and that is very very bad.

If you don’t already know what Net Neutrality is, watch this short video by CGP Grey and find out.

While we’re at it, let’s me provide a video also from CGP Grey explaining how, even though Trump lost the popular vote, he still won the election and why that’s a major problem in our system.

Now that you’re familiar with Net Neutrality and as most of my audience are fellow bloggers, I’m sure you can start to see the nature of the problem.  People like you, fellow blogger, and me, a person who can barely afford groceries and is going deeper into student debt, there is NO WAY I will be able to afford to pay fees to keep a fair amount of bandwidth coming to my site to provide you with wonderful content three times a week and this is just the smallest of concerns.  What really terrifies me is the implications on independent media outlets or really any media outlets that the FCC, aka Trump, doesn’t like and want’s to deny service or any media company that wants to squish the competition even further from the already small number of companies that provide 90% of the media to the country.

Picture getting clearer here? I really hope so.  Now it’s not all bad news.  Massachusetts is setting a good example by going full green by 2035 and in not American news India banned all forms of disposable plastics in it’s capital.

However great these pieces are,  they’re still a drop in the bucket.  The way we can really fight is to back a grass roots political REVOLUTION! Want to know how? Sign up and support Justice Democrats for real progressive candidates and the change us the people ACTUALLY want.

I can hear you now, “Fin! It’s Music Wednesday, where are the tunes?!” I’m getting to it.  I’m sorry but I had to get all that off my chest and when rallying up for a revolution, you have to know what you’re getting all worked up for. Anyway here’s some music to get your inner anti-establishment punk rocker riled up and ready to take some action!

To start we have a real classic by Rage Against the Machine, or more affectionately known as Rage.  Lyrically, its pretty basic but so is the message: The forces that be are out of control and this includes police brutality especially against minorities.

Next up we have a classic from the Misfits, Fiend Club. The lyrics are pretty basic here too but the message is simple: we march and we fall, we’re one and for all.  I felt like it was a particularly fitting song given the women’s march is believed to be the BIGGEST DEMONSTRATION EVER SEEN IN US HISTORY! We’re in this together folks, one and for all.

 

Woodkid is one of my all time favourites.  Such a bae but also his music is beautiful, his voice, his music videos all just so so fit! Iron is a a great song to capture that “calm before the storm” feeling of getting ready for some action jack.

I have already written about Dance with the Dead before but this song, Riot just gets me going.  Especially after that scream at 15s.

Now I realize that it’s kinda late for some of you, it’s like 10.30pm here (London time) or maybe you’re just really anxious about the state of affairs and prefer to calm down a bit.  Don’t worry, I got just the thing.

Science discovered that this one song reduces anxiety by 65%.

 

Anyway, remember folks: Democracy is not a spectator sport. We have the power. Not corporations, not the mega-rich, not reality television stars turn politicians. Get Angry. Get Active.

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Why is it called “Soccer” and why rugby is to blame.

Happy Monday!

I hope everyone had a happy and safe New Years Eve.  My new years was quite lovely.

As an American living in England, I very literally learn a new thing everyday.  I’ve learn that the English are as obsessed with bacon as America but English bacon is much better (soz America but these guys cut their bacon nice and thick), that the English have their own ways of pronouncing the alphabet (“h” is “haych” and “z” is “zed”), and they that cookies are biscuts (unless they have chocolate chips and THEN they’re “cookies”).  The list goes on(1).

One difference that I had been well aware of and understand the discrepency for but never understood how it happened was: football versus soccer.  Possibly more confusing, I’ve always wondered why we (Americans) call American football, football.

football-vs-soccer

Clearly it should be called “Handegg Ball”.

Short answer: It’s ruby’s fault and ergo Americans are not to blame (this time).

Long answer: In 1863 a collation of British public schools were trying to come up with a Continue reading

My First English Xmas Dinner.

Happy Monday!

As I mentioned last week, I’ve decide to deem Mondays “Mystery Monday”(1) and way back three days ago on Friday I already had an idea of what I was going to write about(2) but as reliable as clichés are life happened and now have quite a different thing to write about.

Xmas is just another day to me however my flatmates and friends here at uni all love xmas and many were gutted when they found out that I’m not going home or going to spend the holiday with anyone, to the point where a friend gifted me a chicken to roast for xmas dinner.

I’m not much of a cook but I can read directions.  I thought.

Four hours after putting my chicken in the oven, this is what I pull out.

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Xmas Dinner 2016: Briqued(3) Chicken

Looking at my blackened bird, I couldn’t figure whether I wanted more to laugh or cry(4) but either way I do what any sensible person would do: take a picture and send it to all my friends.

Everyone asked basically the same thing but my friend Nat phrased it best: ‘One question: how?’

Good question, because at that point I still didn’t have an answer until my other friend accused “did you read the directions?!” to which I replied “Of course I did, it read cook at 280* for 4 hours”, if you’re English and/or remember that I’m an American in England, you can probably see where this is going.   After a apéritif of ego, I dug out the package out of the trash, to prove to my friend that the directions were misprinted when I saw that it read 280F/137C.

Oh the joys of being a foreigner.

Happy Boxing days, folks.

If you have an embarrassing or funny holiday story, feel free to share in the comments below.

Footnotes:

  1. As a note from behind the scenes, I like alliterations and Friday being comic day lent it self to ‘Funny Friday’ and in the beginning I did memoir bits on Mondays but not exclusively, as it was originally my only day but once I started doing Fridays also it kept oscillating between book review and memoir and then sometimes it was just something else completely so I decided to make Monday more interesting by leaving it to be the wild card day or ‘Mystery Monday’.
  2. Don’t worry, I’m coming back to the Bubbles.
  3. I’m proposing that we make ‘brique’ a verb ‘to make into or like a briquette’ for my fellow Microwave Chef types.
  4. Not because I botched up xmas dinner, whatever, no I feel guilty about throwing out an animal food stuffs.  I’m not a ideological eater but I try to be mindful and I figure that if an animal has gone through the life of being raised to be food that the best way I can respect it’s former existence is to not let it’s nourishment go to waste because just to throw it away at this point seems kind of like insult on top of injury like “your existence was to be raised and killed and made into food but now you’re going to waste because you’re not even being appreciated as food.  I know there’s lots of logical holes and squishy bits in there but it’s why I felt guilty.