I live at home in Glasgow with my dad, his girlfriend and our cat Oscar. My parents have been divorced since I was 7 and circumstances mean I don't get to spend as much time with my mum as I'd like. I've made my peace with the situation though, and it means that when we do see each other, the time is special and I cherish it all the more :)
It bugs me that I still stay at home as I have all sorts of mad plans and ideas for a pretty wee flat somewhere outside Glasgow, but I simply can't afford it at the moment. I'm also an only child and while I'm certainly no loner (honest!) I do enjoy my own company and space, so living alone is also a kind of weird dream for me.
I'm a complete geek. Please note this is not the same thing as being super smart - if ONLY I were some kind of genius! Alas, this is not the case. That said, I love learning, reading, researching and writing. I adored secondary school and my Undergraduate in English Literature and Philosophy at Glasgow University. I wasn't exactly the model student...missed tonnes of lectures over the years, never joined a single club - pretty much kept the same friends I had from school... You get the picture! BUT I loved reading and writing so much that after a year working full time in a good job, I decided to throw caution to the wind and go back to Uni to do a Masters in multimedia journalism. A scary decision that took me ages to work up to, but I'm so glad I did :)
My favourite authors are Margaret Atwood and Sylvia Plath. I encountered them both for the first time in 6th year at school doing Advanced Higher English. I had to go to a different school to do it since my school didn't offer it as an option, and while there I was in a really small class of around 15 or so and our teacher was this mad, funny, inspiring woman who really got my writing style and encouraged me to write fiction for the first time.
It's not something I do regularly now (mainly as I simply don't have the time) but I always remember she told me in a letter to "never give up, you have a memorable voice." How lovely! Anyway, I DIGRESS! As part of the course we had to read Plath and I fell in love. The Bell Jar, The Colossus and Ariel are 21st century classics - you either get that or you don't, I think. Atwood is another absolute genius. Everything I've read of hers has stayed with me for a long time afterwards. Most recently was Year of the Flood, but my favourite is probably Lady Oracle or Alias Grace.
I am a bit of a feminist. I almost don't even want to write that because of the negative, hairy-pitted, bra-burning, man-hating connotations, BUT nonetheless it's how I would describe my views. There are still so many inequalities between men and women, some explicit and others, crucially, implicit. You just need to google gender pay inequality to read hundreds of interesting scholarly articles about the fact that men and women WHO DO THE SAME JOB in certain industries are still paid differently - and an overwhelming majority of the time it's the man earning more. Why isn't this blatant sexism front page news?
There is a definite difference between how we treat men and women in the media as well, which really irks me. The media are so quick to crucify female "celebrities" about things like weight-gain and drunken behaviour, but derogatory articles like this about men are extremely rare. And depressingly it seems that more often than not it's other women who are so keen to cast the first stone. Men and women are different, clearly, with different strengths, abilities and traits. But equality is the issue, and I'm still not sure we are there yet.
It's not something that I'd say directly affects my daily life, but I do find myself thinking about these kind of things quite often. If you want to read some interesting books on feminism and the persistant inequality between the sexes I'd recommend Living Dolls by Natasha Walter and The Equality Illusion by Kat Banyard. I don't agree with everything they have to say, especially Walter (some of her arguments appear to be backed up by issues of class and wealth - smacks of snobbery!) but both make really interesting points and are easily accessible.
I have no formal training in fashion, so anything I say about it is purely a layman's opinion. I am passionate about it though, maybe more so than I often feel comfortable to admit since I tend to think, who the hell cares what I have to say! But FORTY FOUR SUNSETS is my blog and I'll damn well write what I like! My favourite high-street store is Topshop BY A COUNTRY MILE since I really don't think anyone else is up there in terms of fashion-forward designs, value for money and collaborations. I reckon Topshop deserves more respect from fashion insiders.
My favourite magazine is UK Elle and some designers I like are Stella McCartney, Alexander McQueen, Alexander Wang, Gareth Pugh, Christopher Kane, Ashish, Burberry, Erdem and Chloe but there are literally hundreds more...
I'm a Cancerian, and one of those schmucks that buys into horoscopes in general. I don't live my life by them, but I do think there is definitely something in astrology. It probably comes from my mum - she's into a lot of that stuff... She's not religious as such but I consider her a very spiritual person.
Fellow Cancerians, today's horoscope from elleuk.com goes like this:
"Now that the Moon is back in her home turf of Cancer, you'll sense that all is right with the world again (at least in your world). All attention naturally gravitates towards you. Single ladies need to see and be seen, while committed Cancers need to be appreciated, worshipped and properly adored." Awesome!
I've had the same core group of friends for ten years. I still remember meeting Kirsten and Nadine on the first day of secondary school and asking if I could hang about with them - what a sado! So glad you said yes, ladies! Three holidays, several major lineup changes and twelve (???) boyfriends between us, we've had some hilarious ups and some pretty intense downs over the years but we are all at a stage in our lives now where we know we will be friends forever. Sad? Maybe! True? Definitely!
I feel so proud and thankful to have people like them in my life. Ladies, I love you!
(Natalie - I hate how you're not in this one!! But trust me when I say every other one of us all is hideous of me, or is totally inappropriate! x)
So, the people I'm tagging for this are ALL my followers. Yes, all 20 of you! Especially if you've ever commented on a post before, then I'd love to read your seven things. If you've recently done one then fair enough, but everyone else get on it!