Sometimes I hide things later.

Being a secretive Pisces. Who sometimes stays up late and writes silly things. And sometimes people see those silly things and save them. Sometimes they like those silly ideas I have very late at night and so perhaps they weren’t so silly after all.

Yvonne saved this one for me. This is my post London Riot post. It was a bit late. I think I’d probably been out. And written it god knows when. It was after I’d emailed a bike shop who’d been broken in to during the riots and they wrote back saying they weren’t after donations but wanted to do something for their “Late night shoppers”. I’ve not heard back from them yet so I’m sure they’re still thinking about it.

Dear Penny and Matthew,

I love your idea of involving your late night shoppers and perhaps even some of the people like Aaron Biber might donate some of his extra money to the youths who need help. Thanks to the lovely Björn, Sophie and Omid from BBH, Aaron was the first to be taking donations when we all wanted to help somehow.

I was wondering if perhaps we could combine photoshop looter and the dare digital This is our London piece and offer some places in advertising for your late night shoppers.

What I think we need now is to join together and listen to the people who wanted to nick all that stuff.
I feel pretty responsible working in advertising.

I mean, we all know we are selling shit to people, and most of us working in advertising don’t buy much stuff. As far as I can see we all dress pretty badly and don’t buy anything much apart from books, furniture and trainers. We sometimes work long hours, are all very dedicated and are all intensely creative.

But mostly, we know we are selling shit. That’s why we don’t buy it.

The perfume I wear, I bought three years ago. It was a huge bottle of Marc Jacobs. So far I’ve used about a centimeter. It’s going to take me 10 years to use it all. So far in my life I have had huge bottles of Aveda Toner, Shu Uemura cleanser – that were both so awful I couldn’t give them away – but still they sell that crap for £60 a pop. With no chance of a refund when you discover it’s not actually that great. The Marc Jacobs perfume is lovely and I wear it every day, but it’s still going to take 10 years to use up.

I know I am not especially attractive to the opposite sex regardless of my Marc Jacobs perfume. But that also I’m not especially bothered about. I’ve got two daughters. They are all I care about. When I thought trouble was heading our way I brought in all our window boxes and took the girls upstairs to their bedrooms. I worried like mad for them.

I don’t want them to be brought up in a war zone.

It was my choice that I carried on working in order to send them to the school I want them to go to. It’s not posh. It’s a school where they learn about spiritual values and that means more to me than anything and that’s the whole reason I had children. But that’s another story.

My point I’m making is perhaps this: there is absolutely no point in going to university – well, for me there wasn’t. I could see no reason at all to go into debt to learn shit from idiots. I instead chose to learn on the job, to talk my way into jobs. To sell myself. And the reason I could do that was because my mum told me that without a doubt I could do anything I wanted. I was capable of doing anything at all, ever. Nothing was a barrier. Because I am infinite, and I can do anything.

So I went to university and I hated it. It was boring and stupid. What is the point of sitting and learning stuff that has nothing to do with me. I wanted to be involved. So I became a calligrapher. Then I decided I liked sharebroking so I insisted to some people I would be indespensible – as long as I learned to type – and so I took a typing course. Then I saw a job advertised for a junior designer so my boyfriend at the time called up and sold me over the phone and I got the job. Because I demanded it, I got a lot of money. The payroll lady said I was earning more than the others – the reason – because I asked for it – and I worked hard – and I was good.

Then I applied for another job – and they said no way. So I appealed, I really wanted it and I knew I’d be good. So when they said no, I told them they were wrong, I would be great. I got the job and I stayed two years. They loved me. I worked hard. I was eager to learn. I was always so annoyed I didn’t have a degree but I carried on and did it. And that job formed the foundation on what I do today.

When I arrived in London at the age of 25, I was told there was no way I could be a designer because I didn’t have a degree. People would hate me at cool East London parties for not having a degree. I always felt pretty inferior for not having studied. But I didn’t want to. After my year in Germany I knew there was no point studying for anything – the best way to learn, was to be there learning.

So I got the designer job. And I moved on and I moved on. I demanded jobs and I was determined to be good. And I was good. And I was committed. And I was resilient. And I was there. No matter how hungover as I was in my younger days I would always turn up.

Working hungover is better than not turning up no matter which way you look at it.
Especially in advertising.

My first bit of work experience was at Marilyn Sainty. She was the best fashion designer in New Zealand when I was 15. We had to choose a place to do work experience and I said I’d like to go there. That was my first choice. And they said, sure, of course. I didn’t learn a thing about fashion design. I wasn’t put up the top doing the best job. I had the worst job possible. Ironing. And that was all I did for three weeks. After that I was given some absolutely beautiful pieces of clothing. And I met Marilyn who gave them to me.

It might also be useful here to mention that I did have a very priveledged upbringing. My mum said I could always do anything I wanted (apart from owning a shoe shop). I was always pretty angry with her though because she was always a lot nicer to my brother than she was to me. How many years I have spent basing my identity on feeling hard done by. But that is silly and a waste of energy. My life is my life. And there is no point in wasting a single second feeling resentful.

I spent three years in the North Peckham Estates in Furley House. It wasn’t great. But it toughened me up. It was all I could afford at the time. I didn’t have a penny for anything apart from food and wine. We’d spend our nights at the 12 Bar Club or out with friends. Or on the cheap train to France. But you know I seized life by the balls and I did it.

Now I focus my energy on being concious. What does that mean? It means observing myself and my thoughts. And avoiding being controlled by my thoughts. My mind is a tool only. I do not want to be taken over by my mind. So instead I now sit back and watch myself being overtaken by my thoughts, my mind. And I am the observer. I no longer get caught up in my thoughts. I observe them instead. Well, when I’m remembering to pay attention.

There is so much arsch in my head, and it’s all made up by my mind.

So instead I just think, is there a problem? No there is no problem right now. So I am ok. I am at peace. And I breathe in and out.

And in the spirit of Matthew and Penny from MiCycle. Let’s not make fun of the rioters let’s not condemn them. Let’s just make them a cup of tea and teach them photoshop and advertising instead. Or even better some Eckhart Tolle.