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I thought this article was a timely (just before Christmas) nudge of inspiration. I know my family and I can do better when it comes to finding bargains, especially as food price inflation continues to sprint ahead. AGirlCalledJack‘s story really moved me.
Started by 16-year-old Alex Curran after she was discouraged from entering beauty pageants (because she has cerebral palsy), “The Miss You Can Do It Pageant [for girls with special needs, ranging from learning disabilities to physical conditions] isn’t about girls being crowned the prettiest. They all go home with a crown, a trophy, a sash and a gift box.
“It’s not about turning your whole self into this fake little doll,” she says. “It’s about showing the girls that they can do anything that they want to do. And [that] everyone loves you for who you are, and everyone falls, and everyone has flaws, and everyone is worried about what other people think.”
Alex was the first disabled participant in Miss USA and won the Miss Iowa title in 2008.
A recent Stylist article said, “Statistics show that the average woman is now so busy we plan our lives five weeks in advance, with one in 10 having the next 10 weeks of her diary filled to the brim with work and social commitments.”
As one of those guilty as charged, and with a partner who decries exactly this type of over-the-top time management, I wonder what the solution is. Particularly as “Studies show people who make snap decisions on everything from which lunch to buy to who they choose as a partner are happier and healthier than those who agonise over everything.”
Should we schedule in some spontaneous time?
Fascinating thought – London becoming its own independent country. Interesting times, with Scotland actually debating the topic. According to a Sunday Times article, Mayor Boris Johnson wants to issue visas specifically for London in order to attract the talent he believes is necessary to keep the city successful. The article discusses ways such a change would be good for the rest of England, particularly in encouraging a better spread of growth and innovation throughout the country.
However, Michael Goldfarb, writing in the New York Times, discusses what he calls the Middle Class Exodus, as family after family leave the city, unable to afford to live there anymore.
“The property market is no longer about people making a long-term investment in owning their shelter, but a place for the world’s richest people to park their money at an annualized rate of return of around 10 percent. It has made my adopted hometown a no-go area for increasing numbers of the middle class.”
Which is incredibly sad. Caitlin Moran says it well.
“What will happen in the end, if London remains closed to the young and new and restless and weird, and becomes merely a place where the global elite invest in houses, in a way that – before 2008 – they more usefully invested in stocks and shares?
“Well, it’s good news for Britain. A million ideas a week that would, previously, have migrated to London will now remain in their home towns, and make those towns glorious instead.
“London will admire itself, endlessly, in the mirror of the Thames, until, one day, it realises it has dried up completely – and turns back to find the city empty, save for skeletons and bad money.”
Nearly a year apart, two articles by George Monbiot had me nodding along and raising my hands in question. How do we change this? It is so important, yet the trends are all moving in the wrong direction.