The ‘LAD’ Culture

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Without doubt one of the most talked about parts of young culture and society at the moment is the new fangled ‘LAD’ culture. Now for me, I have only noticed it within the last couple of years, whether it is something that has always been around I do not know, but I will be writing about what I have seen the last couple of years.

The LAD culture truly does disgust and annoy me. From the simple stupidity of ‘LAD’s night outs, to the LAD bible and who knows what else, it all seems stereotypical, sexist and completely rude and unnecessary in this ‘developed’ world. Every night I go out, even in the day, I here and see people who seem to live their life by this LAD culture. From what they wear and who they follow, *cough cough* Joey Essex, to how they act around, and toward, women.

What is even more annoying is the attraction these kind of people get from women and the press/media. While I go out never with the aim of just using a women, these ‘LADS’ aim to go out, get drunk and sleep with as many people as possible, somehow these always being the nicest and most attractive people. The media also seems to love these kind of men and spread the word about them as much as they can, simply talking about their bodies and not their minds. How can these people be attracted to ‘LADS’  in anyway. Simply put LADS are modern idiots, just with a different name. And a name that also has a bible.

The LAD Bible is an online viral kind-of-thing, which seems to get off with being sexist and stereotypical in any way, with no real arguments against it. It is this kind of thing that truly annoys me.

Now many may read this blog as jealousy of not being a LAD and as such, not getting the attention of as many women. I swear it is not however. Instead they simply annoy me. They have made the modern era one where you have to be a dick to somehow get the women. To be honest I am simply angry at this new trend, and more than anything the pressures they could be seen to be putting upon your average teenage guy like me.

The LAD culture has fed the need for many young men to see themselves as ugly unless they go to the gym or have the most up to date clothes and haircut, the majority of which just makes them blend in to the crowd of LAD’s. We are in a modern world where stereotypes are just allowed and continue to thrive, and this LAD culture may be a stereotype in its own right, but it is one we have created in just the last few years. We have allowed it to gain traction and allow these LADS ideas and culture to take over the young male stereotype and role. I will never go along with this culture and I hate it oh so much. Once again it is a topic which needs to change, and for those who are a part of it to see what they are doing and how they are acting and how disgusting it can be.

I do not wish to stereotype so if you have read this blog in that manner I am very sorry, but I hope the majority of people will see where I coming from and hopefully agree with me.

BU Proud

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Last night I attended the ‘Activities Awards’ at my university, Bournemouth University. It got me thinking about how proud I am of my work at this university as well as the university itself.

It is safe to say that the majority of people love their university and are proud of its work. But at BU I have recently realised that we have quite literally thousands of opportunities to make each and every student proud. Volunteering is a key aspect of that with hundreds of different projects and groups dedicated to volunteering in and around the university.

Last night though I truly realised how proud I should be of my university. I mean, I am a first year, part of a society that was only started a few months ago, and we went onto win an award for improvement in our society. It is quite a nice thing to say you are part of an award-winning society.

And that is not all. Tonight I have a further awards night. If I am honest it all feels a bit like the Oscars followed by the Baftas, well thats what I’m telling myself. Tonight my work as well as the work of many other student representatives will be honoured at the annual student rep awards. Again, to me this shows how easy it is to be BU Proud. I have worked really hard this year on my rep work and so to be nominated for awards such as a ‘You’re Brilliant’ award actually makes you feel like you have done something that is worth while, and something that has and will continue to make a difference. Recently I wrote about the driver that is success, and to me this success of getting these awards just pushes me on to want to develop and improve further next year. I have already applied for a myriad of opportunities and hopefully will be just as successful in those opportunities as I have been in this years opportunities.

I am going to keep this blog short. I do not want to be seen as just selling BU to my readers. Instead I just  wanted to show people the effect acknowledgement has on people, as well as how important it is to realise who has worked hard enough to make a difference. I like to think I will continue this kind of work on throughout my uni life and when I leave use it as a way of showing people that I can control situations, I can make improvement and overall, I can make any organisation proud of my work.

But right now, I am BU Proud.

The Drive of Success

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Success is possibly one of the main things in everyone’s life that drives you forward, success in turn is what drives us onto further success in the future. Success, however, is not always the easiest thing to achieve, when we do achieve it we feel all the more happy with ourselves due to the hard work we had to put in to get it.

I have always found myself being driven by success with failure never an option, not in my mind anyway. It is the reason why I always go into every exam thinking in the most positive way I can as well as always staying focussed on my goals. I prefer to look on the thinking positive and being successful side of life than generally always thinking I will fail and my mind-set holding me back.

I have found this with a lot of people over the years. Many people are purely negative towards all their work and all their studying, they go into each examine telling themselves they will fail. If you think you will fail, then yeah you probably will. Success then seems to be forgotten about by many while failure is becoming ever more the easy option. At university I have learned how many people just want and are happy with, that 40% pass rate. As long as they get that they don’t care. But that isn’t success. That is stability, that is normal, if anything just below normal. I could never, and will never, think like that. For me getting the best grade I could have, has been vital. If I work hard enough than I know I can get a great grade, it is then that I feel successful within myself.

What seems to be happening today though is that people are giving up. Many see better lives coming out of failure than success. Many see that every failure just makes them stronger, and that is true, if you actually take on who you failed and develop further. A lot of people talk about famous businessman now worth billions who do not have a GCSE and think that if they fail it doesn’t matter. This isn’t true, all this shows is that many not only learn in different ways, but that few people actually learn from their failures to go on. If everyone learnt from their failure and turned it to success the world would be full of businessmen making millions. The issue is many take failure and instead of learning from it, they simply disregard it. This means they cannot develop and thus how can they succeed because surely they are not going forward in any way. Those rich businessmen you see may have no GCSE’s, but they probably had ingenuity, they developed in other ways.

You cannot just sit back and wait for failure to make you rich. You have to find the success in some ways. Whether that is selling something, starting a new job, countering or whatever. Failure should never be relied upon or an option for anyone. Every single one of us can succeed in some way, some career, some form of education. Think about that next time you have your next exam or job interview, and maybe you will go in with an extra spring in your step, an extra piece of productivity, all to succeed.

Volunteering Goodness

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Last week I spent two days volunteering with my friends at university, one day simply cleaning a park and wood area while the other day was spent helping to maintain healthland. Now, I am not writing this blog to you to tell you all about the geography behind my volunteering. I am just writing to share my experience and maybe, just maybe, it may motivate someone.

Although this volunteering maybe wasn’t the most exciting volunteering you could do it still made me feel more than good inside. The first day of fieldwork I spent repairing paths which had been ruined by the floods while also litter picking, a very necessary part of modern volunteering. Now this may sound dull, but once you get there you realise how fun it can be and how beneficial it can be too, not just to you but the overall environment. Helping out in any way is an easy way that we can decrease the massive impact we do have on this world. The amount of litter we picked up that day is incredible, and this is only in a small, relatively unknown, area.

The second day of volunteering was spent clearing heathland to bring it back to its best. Again this may not sound like the most soul enriching activity, but nonetheless is still got us all together and got us all helping out for the environments sake in any way we could. This is a very important task on heathlands and means the many habitats there can be conserved and continue to grow and hopefully thrive.

The main point I took from these experiences was that volunteering had no bad side really. In the space of one day I met loads of new people and made new friends. Not only that, but you are making a difference on the environment. Many would say, why am I picking up other persons litter? Well it is because in this world this has to be done if we want our beautiful landscape to survive. Unfortunately littering is all to easy to do by too many people.

Volunteering also gets you out into a new world outside your bed or room. You can see new places, whether you volunteer where you live or abroad. It can be hugely beneficial and really enrich your life.

I do not want to be seen as just trying to sell my readers volunteering but it is an incredible thing to do, and one day it may become necessary for us all to have to do it, even though that day really, is today. Soon our effects on this planet will be unmeasurable and just by each of us volunteering a little of our time to the world around us we can slow this impact down and maybe one day start to reverse it. To me volunteering is simple, easy and a great opportunity we should all be making use of. Many will be laughing at me and this blog right now but that is their loss. When there are so many oppertunities for volunteering which bring so many great memories I see no reason why everyone shouldn’t volunteer. Maybe instead of laughing at whats happening around us you should help. Find your nearest volunteering scheme and take part, meet new people and make the difference.

Making Yourself Stronger

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Sometimes obstacles or events are put into our way that either beat us or allow us to grow, allow us to stand tall enough to walk right on over them. Some events are harder to walk over than others. However everything we do really can have the potential to make us stronger.

Any obstacle can be turned to rubble if you put the time and passion in. Now sometimes you do that exact thing, and another obstacle forms, something linked to that thing you thought was out-of-the-way. It is these things that we forgot about that can come back around to bite us again. However, we all have the ability to ignore this and move on no matter what. We use that one experience to build ourselves back up, and knock the obstacle back down once again.

We are a not a race that just allows things to get in our way and not do anything about them. Yet, we allow the small things to allow us to be thrown to the floor. Many of us do not fight back against these thousands of obstacles in life and allow them to takeover. Today I received news that my ideal placement was not going to go ahead, and as such left me in a bit of a tight spot. But have I let this one obstacle get me down. Ah hell no! I got back to my flat, I sat down and for about 2 hours now have been e-mailing new organisations and corporations.

I have never been one to allow obstacles to get me down, and I make sure to never let them get to the stage where they get close to beating me. Earlier today I was feeling dejected, but I never want to stay in that state of mind. I will fight on no matter what. I have always been driven to thrive and succeed. I am not a person to just get by, to just pass. I aim to succeed everyday of my life. It is because of past events and barriers that have made me like this. They have built me up to be someone fuelled by success. No matter what you say that has driven me to great places.

I may not be the biggest, most built guy, but that means little to me. I would rather be strong inside, driven constantly, then huge with no real aims in life. Sometimes looking great and getting a girl just doesn’t mean anything, not when there are constant opportunities ahead. I will not let myself fall at any hurdle and neither should you. We are all strong, if we are not now, then we can be.

Take those things keeping you back and make them the things that push you forward. Do not allow a day to go by where you are not making memories, where you are not succeeding. Together we can all make each other stronger. But individually, individually is where we push ourself and make ourselves the success we are.

Make yourself stronger, make yourself stronger today,

What Is Art?

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Over the past week I have been wondering, what is art? It probably sounds very philosophical really, but truly I do wonder what people think art is. Art is obviously a very personal thing, we all see art in different ways. For instance, for me art is a sculpture or a painting, for me art is not installations or weird concept pieces, or a line on a piece of paper. Now some may say this makes me un-cultured because of this, but if that is true than more people need to be a bit un-culture when it comes to art and that is because of one main act that happened this week. That act is of a miss Lady GaGa. Last week she performed a very intricate and as usual, weird, performance at a show, where the finale ended with one of her dancers sticking their finger down their throat and effectively throwing up on GaGa herself.

Now of course this is pretty damn obvious in what it is showing, whether GaGa believes it or not, as it appears to me to be glamorising eating disorders and pure illness. Now this is something I am more than against. It even makes me purely angry, especially as yesterday she hit back at many critics by saying it was art in its purest form. Sorry, but what? How is vomiting art, in any way, especially when it looks at glamorising bulimia? How can that be art? The worst thing is some people will grow up with this in their culture, where we take the most horrid acts and illnesses and try to make them cool, or ‘arty’. Everyone agrees GaGa is weird and mental and takes her ‘art seriously, but for me this single performance act was one step too far.

This only deepens my hatred on ‘modern’ art. Art where an un-made bed is seen as historic, while the paintings of Picasso and Van Gough are becoming ever more forgotten in my eyes. For me art has to be beauty, and these things are not beautiful. Now of course many say they show the new society we live in. But do we want that reflected and remembered in this art? For me this art will just remind us of the worry times we went through, where money meant more than anything and common sense went down the drain.

To live in a decade where bulimia is used during a music performance in the way GaGa did is purely idiotic and unacceptable. To glorify it is completely wrong, yet many will not realise tho and just go along with it as GaGa is so different and awesome, maybe once but not anymore. Using music to spread the word on help for these kind of illnesses is success, and shows how the musical art form can always be used to spread messages. What GaGa has down is quite literally gone and vomited all over this. Will people care about what you have to say in your songs if you might as well throw it all away when carrying out an act like this?

For me art needs to turn back. Instead of installations of weird objects or just general household items put on display by a famous artist and a called art, we should be creating a renaissance of painters, or sculptors. Be honest when was the last time you remember seeing someone paint a picture instead of taking one, or seeing someone sculpting a beautiful piece of pottery or a bust? In think when it comes to art we have temporarily lost our way. Hopefully with time w swill get back to our best and see the real beauty we can create.

The Issue of Male Body Image

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Many know of the argument of the way female bodies are shown in the media, as well as the multiple issues which comes with this, for instance the body confidence of women and what this can lead to, things like anorexia and bohemia. However, while this is a huge and very relevant issue in today’s world, there is also the issue of male body image and the issue that this is being overlooked.

Women are not the only sex to face issues of body insecurity or a general feeling that the media portrays a wrong image of them, males also feel this. Just like women, men feel as though a wrong image is starting to be portrayed of what a man should look like. Like women on the front of gossip mags, men are facing constant body images thrust upon them by the media and other factors. Women are not the only ones who feel a lack of confidence or security in their body, men have it too. The funny thing is, there is very little difference between the two body images that are being ‘idealised’, yet the idea of men feeling insecure in their bodies is almost laughed at, as though it is a stupid argument. While women are shown constant images of the perfect women as slim and toned, the male equivalent is one of  a ‘ripped’ body in a good suit.

Many might argue that this isn’t the same as men look past any girl who isn’t slim while women are more likely to look at a guys emotions and personality and blah blah blah. But it is the same. Just like men, women can also look at a guys and think he looks shocking just because he hasn’t got abs of steel. While many men do say shocking things about women who may not be toned or may be slightly curvier, many women might say the exact same thing about a man, except they do not see it as shocking because it isn’t spoken about as much. When a man is laughed at for being a little larger than others or not going to the gym it is seen as ‘banter’ by many, while when this is flipped around onto women it is seen as bullying and such, and rightly so, don’t get me wrong it should be seen like this! This should never be acceptable, but what I am saying is that we need to realise that men have these same issues and for many it isn’t just banter, it is also bullying and just simply a horrid thing.

Personally I can’t help but be sucked into this issue of the male body image. I cannot help that feel, like women, that the media just projects a completely wrong and idealised view of what a man should be and look like. Women are portrayed as toned and hot in gossip mags as well as the fact that is they are slightly bigger they are seen as fat by many magazines, men have the same issue with gym magazines and general news as well. Many articles focus on how ‘ripped’ a guy is, and how this is the only way a guy can be hot. We see music videos where unless you have a six-pack you are unlikely to be featured. We also live in a world where unless you go to the gym and are built you aren’t really seen as a proper man.

I know this because I have always felt this when growing up. If you know me you know I am the slimmest and least ripped guy ever. But I have always wanted to be built and massive for no real reason, just that the media has always portray that this is the only way of being attractive to girls. I now that sounds sad and childish, but it is true, and I know I am not the only guy who feels this. I feel no real reason to get fit or anything, which is why I fight myself not to change. I know I don’t need to, but every time I go out or look in a magazine I just can’t help but feel that in this modern world I have no chance unless I have a six-pack. It saddens me that we live in this kind of world. I feel inadequate, which is the man reason I am personally so shy around many girls and useless as a wing-man. I look around and know that any girl will go for any other guy if he is built, no matter how ‘nice’ or ‘kind’ I am. Basically I am always friendzoned. It is sad I know, but I am lucky, I can handle this and move on, but many cannot. It is these people we need to think of when writing and talking about what men, and women, should look like.

The issue of both male and female body image needs to be talked about more, but we also need to remember that both these issues are as important as one another. Both sexes are facing this same issue so instead of facing one but not the other, let us all show the media and people that this isn’t how it needs to be. Everyone can feel happy in whatever body they have, it needs to happen, it should happen, and it should happen today.

Say Thank You

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Walking off the bus, holding a door open for someone, picking something up for someone. In all these cases the worlds ‘thank you’ are simple to say, quick to say, and completely necessary pretty much every time, it is only polite. Yet in the recent years it looks as though we, as a society, may have developed an allergy towards these two words. Yes, the words ‘thank’ and ‘you’ seem to cause society to step back and go, how do we say that?

This all came to me as I walked out of uni holding a door for someone, who didn’t thank me for doing so, and then allowing a girl to get in front of me while leaving the bus back to halls. In both these cases not a single thank you was even thought about. Instead one person just walked on past, while the other simply stood up and didn’t even look at me. This same thing seems to occur daily when walking past people down a pavement or walkway that isn’t wide enough for you both. In pretty much 100% of these cases one person will wait for the other to walk past, however in the past few weeks when I have done this I have received maybe one or two ‘thank yous’ for the seemingly hundreds of times I have done it. In many cases it has been girls, who have been laughing and paying no attention, this leads me onto something even more irritating. That is when the walkway is wide enough if the group of a few people coming towards you just bunches up a bit. But, like usual, many of these people seem to be blind to a 6 foot 6  inch guy walking toward them and just keep walking, usually ending up with me pasted on a brick wall or walking in the road. Cheers loves, that’s the instant words that come to my lips. Yet even if you say something to those people they either A) ignore you, or even worse B) when they actually look back at you for being rude. This is possibly the most irritating thing that comes up day after day.

Having the simple courtesy to say thank you is not hard in the slightest so therefore saying it should be easier than buttering toast. Yet for many it seems like they either literally have no idea what these words mean, or are just blatantly rude. Being honest we all know which one it is.

In this developed world we should all find it purely natural to say thank you to anyone who holds a door, let you go in front of them or any other case like this. These two words take just a few tiny seconds to say and simply make the other person realise you aren’t a rude idiot. When someone doesn’t say thanks to me I instantly hate them, whether I ever see them again or not, It just irritates me to a new level.

I think it is because it is such an easy thing to do and say and takes little to no effort whatsoever. So in conclusion, just say thank you, it isn’t hard, it never has been and never will be.

Drugs

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For me drugs is one of the hottest topics of our generation, and probably will continue to be for a long time yet. Whether you agree or disagree to the use of drugs in any aspect (we are talking classed drugs not prescribed medication) it is still a massive topic we must all debate about and talk about.

I personally am completely against the use of any kind of drugs or legal highs or anything like that really. Now when I tell people this they either pity me, laugh at me, or even say I’m missing out and stupid to not take them. When I hear any of these arguments I simply turn around and walk off, because for me there is no case in which any form of drug from weed to cocaine should be seen as a good idea. I hate the idea of relying on drugs to give me a high, or the need to take them at any sort of social event, I just don’t understand why this is such an almost, necessary aspect of our generation and life. People always tell me the whole idea of summer music festivals is to get high. Ok that’s nice and all, but why? I understand that this idea probably came from the 70′s and 80′s, but that doesn’t mean it has to continue today. Every year we hear of overdoses occurring at every music festival and I cannot help but feel so sorry for hose who die of it, especially if they were pressured into taking the drug because of the rest of their friends did it.

For me I see no reason why I would need any drug to have a good time at a party or event, it is the same to alcohol. Yes I am a student but I drink barely anything to anyone else, because the majority of the time I like to stay in control. I do not like to feel like I cannot control what I am doing or wake up remembering anything. For me the idea staying in control throughout life is what has always pout me against drugs. Why would I want to take something that takes me away from life. I understand for many this is why they take it, they have a hard or horrid life and use drugs to take them away. I really do understand that, but I do not understand those who take drugs and say how awesome they are when they have no real reason to take them. I mean what is the real reason to take drugs? To have more funny at a party? Is that how it goes?

I can see no situation in my life where drugs would have improved those nights, days or events. People always tell me who crazy you get on drugs and how it makes you feel funny. Again that is nice, but I feel good enough in my life to not really need tot take drugs to improve anything. I never get peer-pressured into anything, I make sure of it. If my friends took drugs I would either try to stop them or leave them to it.

I do not need drugs to make a night good, same with alcohol really. I never really on alcohol to give me a good night, because for me I can have a good night no matter what. I know people my age take drugs because they fill they have to, how else could they live their life or really say they have been at uni? I just do not get that whole idea.

In all really I just really do not like the idea of drugs or what they do to people. More than that I hate that people are becoming ever more reliant on them, and thinking of them as something you have to do because you are young. To those who say I am missing out, or more fool me, I really do not care. I enjoy life and I have never felt the need to even try drugs to improve it, because I know for me they wouldn’t improve it all anything. Don’t pity me, pity those who started out with drugs as a bit of fun and are now reliant on it. Think what drugs can do in the long run, not what they do to you that one night a week you do any kind of them.

The Badmouthing of BU

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Lately I have been left both bemused and angry at many people who go to my university, Bournemouth University, as well as the voices against it.

First of the most obvious thing is that not everyone will love every uni, even if they are at it. They may think it isn’t a great uni, and I fully appreciate this view. However, at the same time I really cannot see why you would continue to go to a place if you think it is only ok. Surely it is better for yourself to be at the uni you think you should be at if you think BU is ‘ok’. I have even heard some people say it is a terrible uni, in ways I don’t understand, but that doesn’t matter, what should matter is what these people are at BU in the first place? If I did not think somewhere was ‘good enough’ for me, I wouldn’t go there, I always say never make do in life, and surely this would be a massive moment to take note of that.

Personally I love not just uni, but BU. Today I went to two interesting lectures, with great and funny people, and then went down to the beach to enjoy the sun we are experiencing at the moment. For me nothing could be better the studying a course I love, in a place I already love, with a beach that is just perfect on days like today.

Many say BU isn’t high-enough on the league tables to even matter. To me that doesn’t matter. Yes everyone looks at league tables to see where they should go, but you eventually choose the uni you want to be at no matter what its position in the league tables is. I had offers from other units above BU in these tables, but I didn’t care. I loved the campus, the area and the course. Therefore I didn’t care where it was in the league tables, because for me it couldn’t be beaten. I really do love and enjoy it that much.

If you go to BU and you think that you are almost too good for it then that is your issue. BU is a fantastic place to be and study, I just cannot stand people saying otherwise, and although everyone is entitled to their opinion for me I just can literally see no wrongs with the uni. This isn’t me just trying to sell the place to the incoming freshers, no I would do that on a much more official page. No this blog is me simply venting my thoughts of people and of BU. Mainly because I hate to see people put this uni down, when it has done so much in such  short time. It gives so many opportunities, has one of the best graduate employment prospects and is overall just a greatly rounded and wonderful place. I just hate to see people attack something that I love, as well as hearing people attack it for reasons that either isn’t its fault or really do not matter.

In all this is just a little rant. Nonetheless I hope people see what I clean, and almost take this message and link it to other ideas of theirs. This idea of attacking something we all love is a vital idea really, and one for us all to ponder on.