Monday, April 6, 2020

I'm working from home at the moment. I started my day late. I was really tired this morning and couldn't get up after last night's insomnia.

One thing that's been on my mind is how to get out of a bad cycle when thigns are rolling downwards.

My eating is not the best right now, my sleeping is not the best right now. Gulping a pepsi max makes me feel better but doesnt aid the cycle. I need to course correct to get to better wellness, I need to aim for better sleep and better diet. I need to keep physicallly active.

Matt Hancock the health minister threatened to restrict the quarantine measures to prohibit outdoor exercise. This won't be too good if that's the case. On the other hand there's good reason to do so as people are populating too many of the local parks.

I'm tempted to go out for a run in a moment. There's plenty of work to do today.

Perhaps I should delegate what I'm suppsoed to do for tomorrow.

I'm not managing too well lately. I'm not doing 'badly' but I'm getting hit and not getting up.
Dear diary,

The whole world is in a covid-19 lockdown. A global pandemic has created a new situation, a global emergency. I'm staying at home and unless I have to go into the office (journalism is key-work) I am almost never outside.

So there's a new normal. I'm realising that lots of people are very vulnerable. My boss had a panic attack. I felt a bit sad about that, I always rely on her to hold the thought. It's now up to me and the other team to hold the fort up for her. Also I kept it super secret about her having a panic episode.

There are lots of negatives. Let's think about positives: I've gotten back into music. I bought a melodica. I'm keeping really productive. I got all my 'egg swallowing' tasks done just now. I have a closer relationship with my colleagues than ever.

Recent events have been an opportunity for me to reflect on the past. Playing melodica and piano has also made me reflect. This saturday i was invited to a heavy metal club night online on twitch. It was a lot of fun.

One thing I've done is try to make a bucket list of what life will be like after c-19 and the things I look forward to.

Let's end my post by talking about 'this week in previous years':

  • 2009: My university email account expired, it was a low point
  • 2011: I saw Arnold Schwarzenegger outside a red carpet event
  • 2012: I hung out with friends and smoked some [redacted]
  • 2013: Jamming with friends (resonant to present day I feel)
  • 2014: ending of how I met your mother, it felt weirdly emotional to watch
  • 2015: When I started taking phones seriously?
  • 2016: Working as syndication editor for the sentinel news service, I thought this was the pinnacle of my career, sometimes I still do
  • 2017: Got a new bed
  • 2019: 1 year anniversary for nintendo switch
  • 2020: COvid-19 shit

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Three things I'm positive about today:

  • Mum and dad
  • My health
  • Supermarkets
Things I'm positive about for the future:

  • Supermarkets
  • Drug industry finding a cure for covid-19
  • The power of humans to change the world
Wednesday 11 March: I'm doing some campaigning at work about transphobia in the workplace. I'm having lots of corridor conversations. As I come back from these conversations I'm finding out from my desk that the situation in the world is getting worse with the covid-19

Thursday 12 March: I had a phone call with an external partner about the hateful situation I've been in at work. As soon as I get back to my desk, someone is dismissed from my desk to go home immediately. I'm beginning to worry. My boss says I have powers to book people in to work at the paper without as much budgetary scrutiny

Friday 13 March: I'm in a rush and everything seems to be going south. Lots of people are being dismissed from work. I go into a conference call about the workplace transphobia issue but as soon as I get back to my desk I find out that Boris Johnson declares a state of emergency. My boss comes by and asks if I can work from home. I say it's not possible without VPN support, she said she'll look into it.

Saturday 14 March: I am too busy for the gym or my normal tasks. Im working from home dealing with rotas. I go to the gym and slightly stockpile on non perishables

Sunday 15 March: Working from home again. I don't go to the gym today because I'm too busy. I end up working on some admin and trying to catch up on tasks. I make a good effort of it but there's still lots to do.

Monday 16 March: My first 'work from home' day. I can't really do it. My parents are going out and not realising how much of a risk it is. They say that shops are emptying out but still were enough things to buy.

Tuesday 17 March: More work from home. I had a conference call with a group of media industry types as I'm now a representative of a very unfortunate and public issue. I realise that being an aspergers person, I'm at a disadvantage in communication with conference calling.

Wednesday 18 March: I go into work. It's a ghost town but at least the canteen is still up. I was supposed to have holiday that day but I was super busy and work needed to be done. I decide to go in for Thursday as well. I begin to realise my days are numbered.

Thursday 19 March: I'm told that I can have a full WFH arrangement soon. but not yet. I have to come in tomorrow. The trains are still full-ish and I was behind someone who coughed on the train. I was so close that I felt the wind of their cough. I am thinking this is all okay.

Friday 20 March: I finally have my work from home arrangements set up. I do a bit of work but not much. I feel like this is the first full day of self isolation. Mum goes out and says things aren't good outside. Dad goes to mass. The local church says that the archbishop has cancelled mass and will do live stream church services in the future.

Saturday 21 March: Oh wait that's today. I go for a run outside in the common. I see people not obeying the 6 foot rule and people are out with families and elders for walks. I deliberately stopped and paced around them, I looked weird for walking around them and not them. I was thinking how stupid it was of them to hang around in certain parts of the common like where the benches are or the cafe, but then I though: am I no different to them? I went into the more wilderness areas of the common and went for a run. I went to the posh area and went to the waitrose. I bought some nice meat that nobody who panic buys would afford. I bought it for Mother's day. I bought some saturday papers. As I got home I fell asleep. I wake up and my friends are on a conference call to socialise. I eat good today.

This covid-19 thing scares me but I think what scares me is the very short societal changes going on now. What scares me is the inaction of many people perhaps even myself. The prime minister on Thursday this week said it would be 12 weeks. Why do I not believe him?

Monday, February 24, 2020

This week in 2020

Monday: I have been told by management that I'm being taken off the pop culture magazine. I have mixed feelings about this. At first I had a sense of loss but then i began to accept this.

Wednesday: someone from The Sentinel leaked on private eye about something I'm involved with. I also have mixed feelings for this. I told HR and they have my back on the issue

Thursday: I had a phone call with a UK media industry networking group. I've been invited to be a rep for a wider industry group of people. After there was the pride group with a lot of momentum around the pride celebration

Friday: Emailing cartoonists and some professional people behind the scenes about my involvement for LGBT representation in the company. I've been really busy and overwhelmed.

Saturday night/Sunday morning: Watching Wilder-Fury with the boys. Afternoon: went to a birthday party at my brother's. He's 40.

I often go into what happened in previous years but the present has been interesting.

Let's talk about previous years ever so quickly as part of my sunday night/monday morning round up:

2011: I was at a charity event at work (when I worked in events) and I saw Bryan Adams and Katie Melua - that was odd
2012: I saw the band Alcest and Les Discrets - probably the coolest i'll ever be
2015: One of the first time my balance went and stayed above £1000 in savings
2015: Received the Merkur 36c razor. The blades I later got only costed about £30, I still have them in my bathroom cabinet
2017: The current editor of the pop culture magazine (speaking from 2020) left the desk in 2017, his homecoming seems like foreshadowing when I frame it like that
2018: Pay rise agreed to £30.4k

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Hello friend,

I am currently watching a documentary on universal credit [], the benefits system which is to be rolled out in the UK.

My mind goes back to 10 years ago when I was unemployed. The memories of seeing people have public breakdowns in the job centre and every two weeks trying to justify my existence and applying for jobs I probably wouldn't get in the present day.

In recent months and weeks, I don't really look back much. I don't look forward either. I'm reminded of my 2nd year of uni with the anxiety and how bad that was. But I am also cognizant of the fact that my life then doesnt compare to my life now.  All of the situations in the documentary do make me think that my life could go that way at some point if I ever went south. And so its important to keep fighting. That's what I have been doing of late.

So with that in mind let's think of gratitude, I am thankful for:

  • My friends
  • My mum and dad
  • Central heating
  • Being in an area not currently flooded
  • Having a job
  • The amazing people who run the transport services
  • My local newsagents who stock my favourite drink, nutriment. 

I've had difficulties with eating and going outside lately. I barely manage to make it outside and with my food I drink nutriment which is basically a meal replacement drink, fortified flavoured milk.

'Fortified'. that word triggers me. 

In other news, I've been invited to an art event and I might email the nice woman I met at an event a couple of months ago to let her know I'm going.

17 February: over the years

I came across a day that I feel has some kind of cosmic significance. February 17 over the years:

2009: My graduation. In absentia. I think I regret not going to my MA ceremony now.

For the longest time I had a belief that I'd see a graduation ceremony again. Perhaps not...

2014: I went to see Pascal and Ami Roge perform the music of Ravel in Maida Vale. When I got home I did some preparations for a big dinner that I cooked for the badminton guys. To this day I still remember cooking that meal.

I realise that there was 5 years between my graduation and that concert. Those 5 years feel further apart than the 6 years since 2014. Like a bell curve or something

2015: I'm working on the features desk. It was really busy working as a casual editorial assistant. I get the impression that I was working on a lot of sections at that time and it felt really good having lots of work opportunities coming my way. I left a note asking future me what I'm doing in present day.

Well 2015 me: Suzy on features sits 2 desks behind me. I'm not a senior assistant and cartoon editor and I make 3 times the amount that I did 5 years ago. Despite this I realise that I'm still a way off the mortgage ladder and even though I have savings I am not in the best of ways health wise. Perhaps things are good but I'm looking at things through the eye of the needle at the moment. Let's carry on

2018: I buy a pusheen duvet set. I still have it. I am having night terrors. I went to LBT but not the other saturday classes. I have a new weekend routine because of [redacted].

Perhaps I should move on.

2020: The manager at work emailed to say she's taking me off of one of my sections. I've been working on that section for over 4 years and now I'm leaving. I feel a bit sad about that. I feel anxious too, threatened, even. I wonder if this will be a positive....

A lot in 11 years. I'm a completely different person. Here's to another 11.


Saturday, February 15, 2020

In praise of my friends

Lots has happened in life over January and February. Also: lots hasn't happened.

Side stepping the above entirely lets speak of gratitude. I feel that its important to express gratitude more:

In praise of my friends

  • I have friends who are only a whatsapp away
  • I have friends in different time zones
  • I have friends I can laugh with, that I can cry with
  • I support my friends when I can
  • I express emotional candour with my friends
  • I have worked towards removing toxic friendships and relationships. To such a degree I feel that I'm the toxic one in their connections
  • My friendships have had a long past
  • My friendships have a bright future
  • I love the people who are my friends.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Dear Diary,

I have continued to be unwell lately. I am able to work, go to the gym, eat, shower and shit. But not much more than that.

I will work on gratitude for my recent abilities and focus on those and not what I haven't been able to do.

So lets think about ABC PLEASE

A: Accumulate positive experiences: I have met some family recently
B: Build mastery - well I have been doing a bit of gym despite my illness
C: Cope ahead - I try to set out a plan for the day to structure and dissipate my anxiety. My paper diary helps

P: Physical illness prevention. I'm going outside, doing my steps and keeping active. I'm trying to eat when I can but not overeat.

L:  Low vulnerability to diseases - pass

E: Exercise regularly - mentioned

A: Avoid mood altering drugs. I don't drink and I hardly wank. I don't do drugs, maybe I should do CBD oil

E: Eat healthy: I'm not doing so good at this. I'm not eating at all on some days

Saturday, January 25, 2020


I'm not well at the moment. I'm concerned in fact that I might have agoraphobia.

I'm writing a list of things that are essential right now:

  • How I wake up determines the rest of my day
  • Keeping to a routine
  • Find time to go outside
  • Remember your responsibilities: my work, my family,
  • Look after yourself: eating, sleeping, showering, try not to exceed the eating or staying in bed too long; sleep at normal people times
Once I can deal with those bases, I think I can move forward

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Dear Diary,

I've had an awful, awful week. I'm struggling mentally right now.

Instead of talking about that I want to mention the things I appreciate in life:

3 things I am positive about today:

  • I have supportive colleagues, friends and family
  • I live in relative comfort. A roof over my head despite all the bad things.
  • Lucozade is my ambrosia

Monday, January 6, 2020

Dear Diary,

I don't think that I've been in a good way lately.

I think I actually was depressed for a lot of this weekend.

I've been overeating and my way of coping with that has been...more overeating. Semi-related to this, I originally had a big gym workout day planned but unfortunately it seems that I was too sick to go to the gym this sunday.

Sunday is sacred to me and having to cancel that day was hard to do.

I've been thinking about some reminders that I set myself on google keep. One reminder is: commit to fewer good decisions and actions instead of a lot of mediocre ones.  I decided to focus on healing my body and my mind instead of gassing out by trying to be everything at the gym and do everything on my to do list. I ran a projection in my mind of two outcomes: one is me going to the gym unwell and coming home not doing any work. The other is resting and managing to get some work done.

I decided that the latter was the better outcome. However I thought I'd be done by 10pm. It's 2pm and I've wrapped up.

Someone on twitter who is about my age (35 actually) posted something which upset me a bit. She said that given the liklihoods, this decade is going to bring personal tragedies which are unbearable for her. I took that in and I was deeply upset by this as it means similar for me.

I need to realise that I'm getting older, all my friends are getting married and many are having babies. What is my legacy and what am I going to show for my life?

I had this vague idea that I'd be some kind of writer or cultural commentator as well as an academic philosopher. I have done some amazing things that I'm proud of but being a philosopher and a writer haven't been two of them.

I've been avoiding my family, particularly my brother and my sister. They have been reaching out to me (bless them) but I do feel they are doing it more out of some kind of obligation than them wanting to. I feel like I'm a downer for people and I don't want to be around them. I'm also feeling that my life is going in a direction which is not the same path that many others will take.

Similarly I'm beginning to fear that my work colleagues, with whom I've become close, are not people I'm feeling comfortable with anymore. I'm not feeling comfortable with a lot of people and I am quite partial to avoiding.

There's something that's bothering me. When I was in fact in a couple of family gatherings, I noticed that a lot of my family (it's a cultural thing) are very loud. It is also the case that young children by their nature are very loud. Some have a propensity for unexpected high pitched screaming. A lot of this is very draining to me and it has a cost. I wonder if I have a limited capacity to cope with such circumstances.

Gosh that sounds really negative. Lets do some positives.

I met some wonderful friends during new years day. I'm up to date on my work. Despite this weekend and recent over eating I have been quite good with gym over the Christmas weeks. I've kept up with my routine and I'm really on top of my routine. As soon as I finish my computer scanning something I can go to bed. I've managed to catch up on TV and I'm even beginning to book some time off work.

Another thing I did last night (during insomnia) I bought some clothes. I bought some more underwear and socks. My ankle socks have gotten missing   I even bought an overpriced t shirt made of wool and silk (i know silk is evil and I hate that waistcoats have to have a silk back.

When I got back to work on Friday or Thursday, the picture editor at the magazine came up to me and shook my hand, he said something to the effect of: he was really touched that I got him the flowers.  Old J had a bereavement last month and I told him that there's a lot of love for him at the sentinel.

So, december was that month which defined a new beginning for me in 2015. 2016 began the difficult year at work, it began with all the talk of budget cuts and killing contracts and culling staffers. 2016 was also the year of Brexit and Trump. I want to say that seems a distant memory but it god damned wasn't. I have a feeling that this decade didn't go as slowly as the previous one.

As much as there are reasons for reflection and drawing strength from the past decade. My full focus is upon the future. Climate disaster, populism, and so many other things threaten the world. I am proud to be working and at a place which has the audacity to think it can make a difference.

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Yesterday was New Years Eve/Day night and I began writing in my new 2020 diary.

I felt sad about finishing with my 2019 diary, I found a page in the diary which was a list of "My extraordinary moments this year". I thought that as the year had just ended I could do a complete list as it is most fresh in my memory. I knew that the first 5 and even 10 were obvious, but then some became repetitious or variations on a theme. I really thought hard about making the following list:

[full list redacted]

A full page. It was difficult while writing on physical paper but it felt worthwhile