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Thursday, 27 June 2013

Mary

Mary is in her fifties and hasn't been very well for a long time. She drinks heavily and cries a lot. She goes through phases of feeling suicidal and very hopeless. Mary can't read or write and doesn't like to ask for help. She feels very alone and isolated.

Right now, Mary has no income at all and this has been the case since the beginning of March. She used to get Incapacity Benefit but this was scrapped when the new sickness benefit, Employment & Support Allowance (ESA) was introduced. Mary was 'invited' to make a claim for ESA, which she did. Her claim was not successful, despite the fact that Mary couldn't enter the assessment room without her son there because of anxiety, had a panic attack half way through and told the medical professional conducting the assessment that she had tried to commit suicide just weeks before.

Quite soon after this, Mary had a big falling out with her son and he went away for a while. Mary's son is usually the one who helps her with letters and forms. While her son was away, Mary received the decision letter about her ESA telling her that she was fit for work but she couldn't read it. She started to drink heavily to stop feeling bad about the argument with her son and she blacked out for a few days.

These days turned into weeks and Mary's money was stopped without her really knowing. Because she had been turned down for ESA, Mary's Housing Benefit was also suspended. The Housing Benefit department wrote to her to tell her this but Mary didn't open the letter because she didn't see the point when she wouldn't have been able to read it.

Weeks became months. Mary hid away in her house drinking heavily and hearing voices in her head. Her housing association served her with a notice of seeking possession because of the rent arrears she'd accrued as a result of her Housing Benefit stopping which had happened because her ESA claim had been turned down. Mary tried to commit suicide again. Her son found her just in time.

Mary has now submitted a late appeal against the decision about her claim for ESA. While she waits for a decision as to whether or not she will be allowed to appeal, her income will remain at zero. The decision might be made in a month, maybe in two or three. Mary was advised to contact Bristol City Council for an emergency payment. She did this. She was given £30. She will not be eligible for this kind of help again for 12 months.

Mary really doesn't think, on balance, that she is fit for work and she doesn't think that the decision makers do, either. In her own words, you're just a puppet to them; just another number; just another success story if they turn you down. Well, if I'm a success, if my life is a success, I just don't know what to say, it's just like they're on another planet altogether, you know what I mean?

Since this post was written, Mary has attempted suicide again and is currently in hospital.

Monday, 17 June 2013

Job App

Here is a job advert from Shoreditch Hype
Hype is Timeout in real time!
We are technology startup with a mission to help everyone discover most interesting spots, happenings, art, people and news locally in real time.
We are soon launching in London, Berlin and Stockholm.
Hype is looking for a great content creators interested in culture, arts, coffee, music, food, fashion and tech. Preferably, you like to hang out in Shoreditch (and other great areas) and can tell us about the best parties, delicious crepes, cool bartenders, street art, co-working spaces, art galleries, smooth coffee or gigs.
This role will include real time reporting, drinking cocktails, tasting coffee, running around Shoreditch and competing with other curators,
Don't send us your CV, we don't read them. Register on http://creativitykiosk.net, create your profile, show us who you are, what you like and we will get in touch with you. You will also get training and will have to show your skills on Instagram, Facebook, Vine and Twitter.
Additionally, we give extra points to bloggers, photographers, video enthusiasts and taste makers.
You need to have a smartphone and a laptop.
Working hours upon agreement, part time/full time, some shifts might include weekends.
If you live in any other exciting area around the world and would like to tell us about it, feel free to contact us.
Any questions, please contact us on shoreditchhype@gmail.com
Find us on Twitter @ShoreditchHype

Here is a job application for the above job with Shoreditch Hype:
Hello Shoreditch Hype
My name is lowercase niiiice. i'd totally be into applying for the vacant hole you advertised for a REALTIMECURATOR/REPORTER/BLOGGER
here is a bit about me along with my creds:
i'm seriously into real time happenings. i feel like i'm not completely part of the connectedness of a happening unless the happening is happening in real time. i reckon this is way the case with most happenings that are happening but esp with 'likes' and 'RTs'. Please RT.
like you, i am on a total mission to help everyone discover most interesting spots, happenings, art, people and news locally in real time. i will do this by RTing the real time fuck out of shit that is just about to be happening and by following edgy art makers and PMing them articles by the fader. my twitter skills are ridic. you don't even know.
i can create content like there's no tommoz. i am a real time creator as well as an out of time creator, a timeless creator, a go time creator, an edge of time creator and a before and after hand creator. the content that i create is mainly word for word happenings and other real time sweet and safe jam pieces. i also write about the spaces in between real time that may or may not be happening during a real time event or creation. the pieces co exist in a simultaneous time space that i think can make for really challenging reading and thought consequences. my content is ever changing and is sometimes scented. some examples of my makings are here .
my interest in culture is over the absolute top. sometimes it's over the moon. an example of the things i am interested in culture wise are in this list:
eco-tech
evacu-tech
hyper-tech
will smith
taste-tech
digi/ana/b+w
hyphen-tech
perma-tech
ethni-tech
milk
hanging out in shoreditch is one of my super strengths. i can totally blend into a scene but also pop up. also, outfits. btw: i totally know why you wrote (and other great areas) in brackets. lols.
i know a shitload of massive about all the stuff you want me to know about and i can mash them all up together like a real time culture banana. eg, i can tell you about the best bar gigs, delicious co-art, cool crepes, street working folios, coffee spaces and smooth tenders. i totally know that you totally know what i mean in an actual way that is both real time and over time.
i am an absolute taste maker. some of my tastes include:
hang my gang
qualicode
freud-un-freud-and-freud-again
gridlock frock
poids
all of my tastes are real time based spaced taste states.
i am also a photographer and i take pieces of images based on findings that have happened in a found way that have evolved in a context of multi layered function with an added dynamic of loss.
instead of sending you my cv, i've written it out on a piece of paper that i got from a homeless charity and photocopied it a million times and sent it to the minister for culture as a statement about poverty. i also attached a video camera to the post box i posted it in and i've left it there for 40 days and 40 nights to make another statement about how jesus was just trying to be a nice guy.
basically, i can run around Shoreditch like an absolute cunt.
really looking forward to being chill with you.
lowercase n.

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Horoscopes #3

June

Gemini

Two thousand years ago there was a nice man called Jesus who taught people to love thy neighbour. He meant you, Gemini. In other words: bake a fucking pie and take it round to Helen's. 

Cancer

Watch this. It'll do you good If it does you bad, it's because of all the lactobacillus in your 'system'. Call us back!

Leo

This could be you in 20 years. But only if you try super, super hard at Maths and eat all your zinc.



Virgo

You know how a plant needs water?
You know how the desert needs the rain?
You know how a whale needs to come up for air?
You know how a cow needs grass?
You know how a pig needs some toast?
You know how we all need a new pair of jeans from time to time?
You know how sitting on a bin bag on the kitchen floor with your bum bag full of dry Cheerios clasped tight around your waste listening to The Verve for days on end can make you feel like you're a bit disconnected from stuff?
What we're trying to say is this: YOU KNOW STUFF. You know at least all the above stuff. Things are betterer than you think you thought you did. Even if you didn't.

Libra

Stop playing Candy Crush. You're a disgrace.

Scorpio

Score. Pee. Oh. Scorp. Eeeeeoh. Sc Orpee O. Thkorpeeyo. Shhhhcorepeeyoh. OIPROCS. Oip Rocks. ROCKS. You have rocks. You're weird.

Sagittarius

Your moon is all smashed to shit and your sun is in Mayfair. Put your hands together like in prayer. Do it now. Do it now. Stay like that for about a two minutes while thinking about something that is definitely alive but definitely not a flower or a person and that doesn't have legs or wings. Think about it really, really well. Talk to it a bit. Tell it you're sorry. Doesn't matter what for. Go for a wee. Now, write to a prisoner. Doesn't matter who. Do it now. After that, eat some toothpaste then some egg, then a five-a-day thing. Do this twice a day for a week. You might be able to change your destiny if you do this. But you should only do this if you already know what your previous destiny was and you definitely wanted to change it because your destiny might already just be fair enough as it is.

Capricorn

Fomitiporia ellipsoidea is a species of polypore fungus in the family Hymenochaetaceae, a specimen of which produced the largest fungal fruit bodyever recorded. Found in China, the fruit bodies produced by the species are brown, woody basidiocarps that grow on dead wood, where the fungus feeds as a saprotroph. The basidiocarps are perennial, allowing them to grow very large under favourable circumstances. They are resupinate, measuring 30 centimetres (12 in) or more in length, though typically extending less than a centimetre from the surface of the wood. F. ellipsoideaproduces distinct ellipsoidal spores, after which it is named, and unusual setae. These two features allow it to be readily differentiated microscopically from other, similar species. Chemical compounds isolated from the species include several steroidal compounds. These may have pharmacological applications, but further research is needed. 

Aquarius

You're all watery at the moment. Buy some towels. Also get cashew nuts, a tiger, something from an airport, some ham, some spam, a fan, a can, some jam, a lamb, a pan, a tan and a van. You need this stuff. It's totally to do with your horoscope.

Pisces

Pisces. We had trouble with your horoscope this month because we couldn't get a good reading of you. Could you watch this and let us know where you are as soon as is humanly and averagely possible? Ta

Aries

You are having a really creative juices of a time right now, Aries. It's really great. It's so great. It really is. Who cares if you're not very good at any of it!? WHO CARES!?!?!?! Say hi to Tony. But not Laura.

Taurus




Thursday, 6 June 2013

Judge Judith

Below is a translation of Judith Woods's article about Kate Winslet's pregnancy in today's Telegraph:

Kate Winslet is pregnant again. I've seen the film Titanic. She was in it. So was Leonardo DiCaprio.
Leonardo DiCaprio isn't the father of Kate Winslet's baby because Kate Winslet is in a relationship with someone else. But I just can't stop thinking about Titanic. When I watched Titanic I was completely enthralled by the characters of Jack and Rose played by Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet. And now that I think about it there was that scene where they said goodbye to each other and Jack said some really nice things to Rose about how she'd fall in love and have babies and I reckon that in real life, Kate Winslet is Rose. And if she is, (which she IS) she's really pissed all over Jack's memory because Rose has turned into a slag because of the babies she's had in her tummy.
I've noticed that Kate Winslet is good at her job. I've also noticed that she sometimes has babies. It makes me cross! She has two children already with two men she really loved at the time. I'm annoyed! She got married to her current partner last year and they're really happy. But I'm not! I think it might be because I don't understand what the phrase revolving door means.
I have no idea what Kate's daughter thinks of Kate because I've never met her. But to the outside world, Kate looks pregnant. I mean, need I say more?
Yes, I need say more.
I don't think that a woman who has three children by three different men is quite nice. I know that I have no opinion about men who have three children by three different women because if I did, I would definitely have said something about that in this article to make an actual point about some important stuff. OMG! I've just realised I'm Lady Bracknell! And I'm not even embarrassed about it!
I don't understand why Kate has had different partners in the past. I mean, she's not even poor! It's really confusing me in my brain and mind. I know! I'll do three judgemental and completely unfounded sentences about each of Kate's husbands to make myself feel better. PHEW!
Who on Earth do I think I am!? does Kate think she is!? A HUMAN BEING????? Well she's not! She's an actor! And I know for a fact that actors do acting! And acting is a job! And I'm not sure where I'm going with this but Kate Winslet is having a baby with her third husband because of ACTING and I think that's bad behaviour and that's just what I think so there!
But it gets darker... sometimes when Kate puts her children to bed there will be sad faces and this is because I have no idea what the childcare arrangements Kate has with her ex-partners which means that it's me who has the sad face Kate is a bad mother who has taken them away from their daddies.
Marriage is wonderful, but it's hard work. This means that some marriages fail. It happens quite a lot, actually. In fact, about one-in-three don't make it. And Kate is on her third. And, instead of butting the fuck out, I'm going to try really, really hard to do a big, fat guess and say that in her previous two marriages Kate Winslet was an absolute nightmare to be with and it was all her fault that they ended. There. I said it. Wow. being a journalist is fun!
Falling in love and marrying and having a baby and breaking up and then doing it again stretches credulity because I live in Toyland. And, seriously guys, WE NEED TO THINK ABOUT THE CHILDREN. WHY DOES NOBODY EVER THINK ABOUT THE CHILDREN?!?!?!?!?!?!?
Kate Winslet: Your children hate you. And when it comes to putting your husband’s name on the birth certificate, it might be worth reconsidering. I'm giving you this advice because not only am I a serious and talented journalist, I am also a fortune-teller and I've just looked into my crystal ball and it says you're definitely a slag.

I feel fantastic.