I had the misfortune this afternoon to look at my Twitter feed, nothing wrong with that in itself, I hear you say? Well in the trending topics section was something marked #PunishAMuslimDay . My first thought was ‘what the hell?’, followed by a great deal of outrage on my part. My second thought was to go and look at the thread out of curiosity. Thankfully, most people posting there seemed to be as outraged as me about the whole matter. Apparently, some letter from some right wing group had got itself a larger audience than planned, and had gone viral on there. So hopefully, on the whole, its had the opposite effect to the one desired, I just so hope no one has been hurt, or worse, due to this nasty piece of work.
Irony is, I went back a couple of hours later, and it had disappeared off of the trending topics list, and had actually been replaced by one, #LoveAMuslimDay! This one seems to be an eclectic mix, about half being people supporting Muslims, and the other half seemingly being right wing extremists (mainly from US, despite the whole thing starting in the UK) doing just the opposite. The funny thing is, none of these had locations on their profiles, while having very similar profiles, how strange? Russian bots, supporting Trump, oh surely not? Sadly I know there seem to be far too many Americans with these sort of views, so I’m not going to say they are, but its strange how none have any location against their name?
Who, me? Oh please, the moment I saw that, my inclination was that if I had a Burka handy, I’d have been dressing up in it, and going out in support of Muslim women as a whole! I must admit, in this corner of West Yorkshire, that might attract less attention than it would in some places, though there may be a few who would…? But no, as unsurprisingly, I dont have one, nor did I have immediate access to one, so I didnt do it of course.
I suspect it could be ‘actress curiosity’ that I would dearly love to wear the Burka out on the street, to find out what life is like from the other side. I’ve seen it worn numerous times in Bradford especially, and indeed in Huddersfield, and wondered what it would be like to be out, with only your eyes visible to the world? So please, if anyone reads this, who wants to give me the chance to wear this item, and solve this piece of ‘actress curiosity’, please, let me know, because I’d love to find out what its like to wear. I’m not sure if, as a white woman, whether a ‘minder’ might be wise, if I went out wearing it, though I suspect in Bradford at least, probably not!
I know, some might suggest that as a Trans, Bisexual woman, Muslim people might have issues with a woman like me. However, in an office with numerous Muslim people working there, not once! I suspect there is one that might try to avoid me on the whole, but I’m not even certain on that! So let me say, if anyone has issues with Muslim people, because of issues like LGBT, come and see me, and learn about my world!
Equally, I’m not saying all Muslim people are a delight to know, but lets face it, its equally fair to say that of some supposed Christian people either!
OK, rant over. Yes, that means video time. Big clue in the blog title? Well, maybe…?
Firstly let me say that I didnt see this on TV last night, only finding out about it after it had all happened. Besides which, given I tend to avoid this sort of reality TV, I probably wouldnt have watched it, even if I had known, given what I’ve since read of her views beforehand. Yes, but for Twitterverse, I might never have known about it, though given the coverage it got this morning, that might have been hard to miss!
So my views are more my own, and as much as I could gather from comments from Twitter, and various media outlets, which may not be all that reliable.
Right, disclaimer over. Thats right, for those in the UK at least, who might know about it, the C4 program last night, A Week As A Muslim, is what I’m talking about tonight. For those elsewhere in the world, well, you’ve seen as much of it as I have!
It seems to be the classic TV take on something like this, take a self admitted non-fan of Muslim people, and get her to live as a Muslim for a week, and film events as they happen. I’m going to use that term, for now. She might have been worse than a non-fan, but as I wasnt witness to that, I’ll leave it there. Part of the reaction against her seems to have related to the fact that she was ‘made up’ to look like she was a Pakistani, which worked both ways, garnering complaints from those who wished to point out that there are white people who are Muslim, so she didnt need to be ‘colored’, and from those who said that it wasnt done in a flattering way to Pakistani Muslims, but as that is Twitter hearsay, I’m not sure how much credence to give to that. None would probably be close to the mark, there are some ghastly views on Twitter, on both sides of the fence!
Of course, as fate would happen, she went to live with a Muslim family in Manchester, and it coincided with the bombing at the Manchester Arena, which led to her realizing, even more, just what ordinary, innocent Muslim people have to put up with from some ‘idiots’! She only faced it for a few days, but for so many more, its a sad fact of life, at all times. So wrong, so sad that there are people like that, but anyway…
For me, I think it would be fascinating to spend a week as a woman in a Muslim family. But yes, I wouldnt make for ‘great TV’ because I’m pro ordinary Muslim people anyway. No, I dont support the terrorist branches, but neither do most Muslim people here anyway! And lets face it, there are some pretty awful right wing white supremacist types around too! Oh fine, she wore a Hijab, but I know that if I was in that role, I would have wanted to go out in a Niqab, or Burqa, just to find out the real truth. Mind, I suspect the reality in Bradford might be different to Manchester, but in truth, no idea.
I have some experience in these matters now, of course. Before September, I’d heard stories of people deliberately ignoring people in wheelchairs, trying to pretend they werent there, but I hoped it was being exaggerated. Sadly, the answer was no, it isnt. When sat in one, people just looked away, had to literally be shouted at, to stop them walking in front of the moving wheelchair, and so much more. All the same, I’m looking forward (hopefully, health permitting) to experiencing ‘Round 2’ in May, in 3 airports (I need to transit going out, direct flight back), I must say.
I guess it might be an actress thing, the challenge of a new role, either in a production, or in this case, a real life situation. So yes, a week as a Muslim would be a very different show with me, but I guess I’ll never know what its like. Unless…?
Equally, of course, if Channel 4 want to consider making a show, a week as a robot, hmm, lol? 😉
The video, massive clue in the title. Live version, a very good one, mind, as I’ve used the original before.
And no, just at present, I don’t mean the Doctor’s at the Medical screening either. Yes, thats on hold at the moment, as I’m waiting to hear back on the results of all the tests I had done on me. Hopefully, they will all be OK, I will be selected, and it will happen, as I’m looking forward to the prospect of it.
Yes, in the meanwhile, and strictly, until I’m sure the big event is going to happen, I’m still job hunting. The two interviews last week, despite what I thought was a decent/good effort, joined the ‘no thanks’ club, unfortunately. Still, I will pick up the flag again, and fly tomorrow into another attempt to find honest employment. This is actually more of an Admin role, with some Customer Service thrown in, so would probably suit better, so fingers are crossed. Confidence still feels battered beyond belief, but at some point, I will pull through.
That also leads into another recruitment agency registration on Tuesday, the people I’m applying for this job through. Hopefully by Tuesday, its still needed! Though yes, you’re right, assuming I’m selected, I’d love to find a job now that only wants me after the clinical research trial, but…Yes, I know, the way my luck is…Fine, I’d love a job, regardless.
OK, last thing strictly on the job hunting front. One of the ‘promoted postings’ on Twitter came from a recruitment gentleman, stating this
If recruitment is important enough to get it right then trust a team to help you. We’ve been doing that since 1998
Clearly it was aimed mainly at employers, not people like me, but I put up a posting, asking if he fancied the challenge of finding something for little, unwanted me. Seems he did, I sent him my CV, and got an email back with a local agency to ring tomorrow. So yes, maybe social media really does work?
Mind, according to one dear friend on my other Facebook account, I’m going to be moving to LA in about 4 weeks, to live, and work. She might yet be proved right, who knows who might have seen my interview over there, and just be waiting their opportunity? I can’t see it, but it would be fantastic.
So far, the only other person looking at me this week, is the Doctor, tomorrow morning. Yes, I need to get that precious letter, so I can apply for my new passport, and become a woman, at the one place I’m currently not, and then that battle will be over, at least. I did sort of gather he may not be the biggest fan of me doing the research trial, when I spoke to him on the phone, about the request for my medical info, but there is no way he’s talking me out of that. The only things that can stop that are, a problem with my results, or, heaven forbid, getting a job that has a starting date before mid December. Yes, I know, the latter, stop laughing, it will happen sometime! 😛 Oh, forgot, there is one more this week. A hypnotherapist on Facebook (again, my other account) was offering reduced rate relaxation, and stress busting sessions, and I’m going to them on Saturday morning. Only £25, hopefully do some good, no harm should be done anyway. Unless they want to turn me into their hypno slave… about as likely as me getting a job at present lol!
Right, the video. One of the lesser Boomtown Rats hits.
Alright, alright, when I joked about becoming a star in Hollywood, I thought thats what it would be, a joke. A dream maybe, but not going to happen? So fine, what if I say I’m doing an interview in Hollywood on October 7th?
No, none of the movie companies have seen my blonde locks, and my Harlow looks, lost their sanity, and invited me in for a screen testing, or to err, try out the casting couch at least! Nor I might add, have any of the major TV channels done the same yet. So…I’ll be an online, err, star at least. Fine, stop laughing, you have to start somewhere, and who knows who will be watching?
Alright, I’ll explain.
A Twitter contact (yes, this place is amazing) named Alexia posted on Saturday, looking for people to do 30 minute (or so) interviews on creative issues, and being the sweet, generous Harlow like soul that I am, I offered my services to talk about my discovery of, and life as a transgender woman, if she was interested. It didnt take long to discover the answer was yes.
So after minimal discussion, its sorted, I will be doing a live interview online, on 7th October, at 11.30 am PDT (7.30 pm UK time, the rest you can work out), which you can watch streaming at https://sqeeqee.com/profile/info/1089462 where it will be archived afterwards, if you prefer to catch it that way, or its the only way you can.
It will be interesting for sure, about a subject matter I feel keenly about (transgender, not me, but…), and should be able to talk about for a while, for sure. Hey, I can always bring up LGB issues if I need to, but principally…Trans is my cause, lets face it.
As I say, its something, my first break in Hollywood at least. Fine, its actually up in Studio City, but its close! As I say, it would be wonderful if someone ‘high up’ somewhere saw it, said she’s of interest, and contacted me, but realistically I suspect it wont happen, but…Hey, if I only get chance to mention my job hunting, and get offered an interview for a normal job, or just for a few days, or more, it gets me the chance to work on Hollywood Boulevard in one of those body suits, or something, wouldnt it be great? Most likely, I will go back to my apartment, and anonymity, but hey, I can hope?
The video, I think this hopefully might be apt (ha ha), but you never know. The singer at least was born locally in Bradford.
As you may have worked out, this is your last British blog for a while. For the next 4 weeks or so, they will be coming from Hollywood, written by a movie star. Oh fine, maybe the last bit is an exaggeration lol! But…
As some of my regular readers know, I do occasionally, when the chance arises, dabble in a little story writing. Given the popularity of Amazon (plus the fact 1 book is exclusive to them at present, here’s a link to my stuff
The author name will also work at Smashwords, Barnes and Noble, and a couple of other smaller places, though the latest one wont be there until September, when the 90 day Kindle Unlimited thing runs out. Yes, I do it for fun, though admittedly it can be frustrating at times, when nothing seems to sell, but anyway…
Something I discovered on Twitter (see, there are benefits to being there lol) is that some wonderfully generous places offer writer residences, generally in beautiful, and inspiring places. One of those became a contact with me on Twitter, a residence named Hedgebrook, on Whidbey Island, near Seattle, which just happens to be one of my favourite cities anyway.
Get out 1
Me, this is for serious writers, not people who write short ebooks. Answer, not necessarily, we consider anyone who writes in a good inspiring manner, and oh, who is female.
Get out 2
It costs money to apply, and given my personally perceived chance of making the grade, given I’m out of work currently, I shouldnt be throwing money away on something like this. Answer, when there is a good reason for not paying the fee, like being unemployed, the fee might be waived.
So at this point, with this information, and nothing to lose, I’ve gone for it. Well, its all set up to go for it, anyway. At this moment I’m waiting to hear how I apply, without paying $30 off my credit card, so that I can complete it, and submit my application.
Yes, it would be amazing in so many ways. Not only would I have no excuse not to write, in fact just the opposite, I’d get to meet other writers, get the chance to discuss so many things, and I suspect, learn to write a whole lot better! And yes, fine, living in my own little cottage (if only for 2 or 3 weeks), writing, walking, and generally being inspired by everything would be heaven. I suspect the networking would be fascinating for me too. I have requested 3 weeks (2 books in that time, maybe?), but if they offered me 2, I’d snatch their hands off.
My initial plan would be to write a much extended version of one of my short stories, actually, one of those on sale at Amazon, “No Place Like Nome”. Other possibles would be to develop, and extend “A Hollywood Happening”, or to do a Jean Harlow biography, and try and put a few things right, that were so awfully wrong in the early ones. Mind, 2 or 3 weeks, if I got as inspired as I suspect I would, I might get more than one done!
No, seriously, its not likely to happen. I’m told this is a very cherished spot to be, and there will be far superior writers to me looking for one of those delightful cottages to work in. But I guess you never know?
OK, to the video. What I’m saying to those nice decision makers, though I’m not sure how closely they will listen?
Firstly, let me say, if you’re looking for a really good tribute to Monica Lewis, who died earlier this week, at the grand old age of 93, this isnt it! If you want to know my personal moments with the lady, through social media, stick here!
Its fair to say that on Social Media, “people” arent always who they say they are. Hey, I have a Facebook account I’m proud of, in the name of Harlean Carpenter, but given the actual lady is dead, might be a clue. And lets face it, most modern stars who have these accounts, have ‘someone’ who posts everything for them. One of my favourites, OMD, its a well known fact that a good percentage of the postings are done by Andy McCluskey, but thats not the norm.
So its fair to say, that when Monica Lewis appeared on both Facebook and Twitter, given that she was in her nineties, I assumed it was someone doing tribute stuff for her. Wrong, I quickly discovered that this genuinely was Monica, and for many months I’ve enjoyed seeing her posts, seeing her comments, as well as all the vintage pictures of herself that she posted. Being honest, I think she was enjoying it all as much as the rest of us were!
However, earlier this week, the news broke that Monica had died in her sleep. Yes, she had been posting on Twitter the night before, and I wouldnt be surprised if she wasnt on Facebook too! There was a further posting on her Twitter account, from her family to confirm the sad news, and pretty much tell us what we already knew, we had been ‘chatting’ to Monica herself, all that time.
No, she wasnt a massive star, but as some would say, she had a decent career, over many years. I never even considered meeting her when I was in LA, but I suspect she may well have said yes, if I had!
Its probably as close as I will really ever get to a genuine actress, and I’m glad I knew her.
So it just needs to be said. Monica Lewis, rest in peace, and thanks for everything.
The video, yes, its her
One of the things that I did when finally submitting, and signing up to Twitter, was to take the chance to take things on a slightly different route, and sign up for Tweets from a lot of places selling vintage clothing, and the like. I know, shock horror, absolutely no interest in the 20’s and 30’s lol! In fact, much of the stuff advertised as vintage, is from the 60’s, to the 80’s, when I was actually live, if very young! And alright, back then, I hadnt realised why I loved looking at women’s clothing so much for me. Well, maybe not back in the 60’s, but yes, I can see signs in the 70’s that probably would have been a major signpost, if only I’d realised.
There is some older stuff, but the one thing I’ve really noticed, is the sizing of it. I’ve seen the odd item in medium size, but the vast majority are either small, or extra small! Yes, I know, when I look back at my 4 ladies from the past, at least 3 of them were small, and slim. Clara Bow, seems to have a bit more shape to her, but it could just be angles, and things?
But then, it could just be deceptive. I checked Jean Harlow’s stats on the modern BMI index (the only one I have an official weight for, as well as height), and do you know what, her BMI index comes up at 20.4! Me, 21.9! To match her index, I’d have to lose about 10 pounds! Yes, fine, I’m fairly slim for my build, and would struggle severely to lose that much, but its not a huge figure! I know, when it comes to clothes sizings, I’m hampered to some degree by having a waist/hips proportion that doesnt match a natural woman’s, but it doesnt match a natural man either! So yes, in UK terms, I’m about a 12-14.
I’m suspecting Brooks would have had a lower BMI, she was tiny, very slim, no cleavage to speak of, and a dancer’s body. But this vintage stuff I’m looking at, is not what the Hollywood stars would have worn, but ordinary folk, if probably the middle class ones!
Yes, diet also plays a part, the fast food we eat so much of nowadays simply didnt exist back then, and going out for a burger was a delight, not a regular event as it is for some now. And of course, people walked more back then! But they didnt have the current trendy gyms, so…
So hey, I might look bigger all round than Jean, but in reality, I’m not that much larger! Slightly, but not a lot!
But if anyone has any really vintage stuff, in bigger sizes, I’d love to know.
The video, well being a Cougar fan could be said to have 2 meanings. One, the one I’m more known for, is as a Keighley Cougar rugby league supporter. But equally, Cougars are a breed of older woman, looking for a younger man to please them. That theory only falls down for me in that William Powell, Jean’s last famous beau, was nearly 20 years older than her!
But anyway, this ‘Jean’, in search of her beau, might just sing this!
Yes, I’m old enough to remember a sweet time, when Facebook and the like wasnt even dreamt up, and the only friends you had were actually in your social circle in real life. Nowadays I’m sure we all have numerous friends on places like Facebook that we’ve never met, and in all probability, never will. Hey, I know I’ve got my fair share of them, thats for sure.
But anyway, despite eventually succumbing to the charms of Facebook at my previous workplace, I didnt get involved anywhere else. To be honest, the only reason I’ve really stuck with Facebook is for a few groups I’m a member of, mainly relating to Irish cricket. Beyond that, and nowadays, OMD related pages too, I dont post there much, beyond using it to advertise the blogs in a (seemingly vain) attempt to boost visit numbers to here.
Its OK, and I go there far too often than is good, but…its as far as I went…Until now!
To those who have been around a while, you will remember I had a photo shoot session last year, with a lovely group called Cocoture, a few pictures from which have been posted here. So fine, they are now looking for a face of Coco, and I decided to give it a go. No, under the circumstances, I dont expect to be selected, but you never know, stranger things happen! But to enter, you had to post a picture, in a specific way, and when I tried, I kept getting error messages. Now, despite being blonde, I suspected I knew why, there seemed to be a Twitter connection to the place they were holding it, and yes, I wasnt a member. So, I signed up for Twitter, heaven help me, and it worked!
Oh, if you want to vote for me, go to https://www.facebook.com/Finestportraits?sk=app_451684954848385&brandloc=DISABLE&app_data=dlt-1 and vote for the blonde doing the Jean Harlow look, I need all the votes I can get!
So far I’m showing moderate enthusiasm for the place, and have posted 4 ‘Tweets’ there since last night, but how long it all lasts, not quite sure? Ironically, at the time I finally succumb to the place, it seems the need for story advertising is dying off, but I might write more in the future, and then…?
Oh, my tag, or whatever they call it? @Harleanlook. I thought I might as well play up the whole Jean Harlow lookalike thing, without taking it too far. Besides which, Stevienicks was gone, I suspect the singer has that one, and Stevie Nicholls was gone too. So, having fun…if you want to follow, feel free to do so, make me feel good about the whole Twitter thing!
Hopefully thats it though, I’m too old for all this young, trendy stuff!
Talking of all that, the video relates to a wonderfully old fashioned method of sending messages, probably used in the good old days of the 20’s and 30’s! I selected this video, rather than the official one, for one good reason, Martin Cooper is in it. For some reason, he wasnt in the original one. I’ve heard it was because he was working on a soundtrack at the time, but dont quote me on that. And yes, Martin is my favourite in the group, so! 😛