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Rock Fetishism

Art, Music, Fashion Revolution. Life is Fabulous!

HOW TO RAGE : 101 – The Guide To Live It Out Loud In Your First Music Festival

When I first heard about Los Almiros Rock Festival, I instantly felt my indie soul all fired up and ready to go. If Glastonbury is my ultimate dream, then that festival had to be one step closer to that dream.

I got in the mood and immediately started thinking of festival outfits. But then as it was slowly approaching, certain problems started arising in my head and they were holding me back.

I was about to bail when in an ‘Almost Famous’ moment under the starry sky, I said: “It’s All Happening!” and went home to start packing. The only thing bringing me down now was that I had to travel alone and I was thinking ‘where is the fun in traveling all by myself?”.

Little did I know.

I never realized how 3 hours passed by while I was sitting at the back of a half empty bus along with a good friend of mine I accidentally met there and her friends! And talking about fun, try pinpointing the tents of your friends (who are in the beach and won’t answer all of your calls) in a vast forest with thousands of campers… Yeah! You got me!

So, that is how this amazing experience started and I was in a total ‘Let’s fucking RAGE!‘ mood!!!

But let’s clarify things a little bit…

[ Rage: to party extremely hard- excessive drinking, smoking, boozing or any combination of the three. ]

About 3 years ago when I bought Alexa Chung‘s book “ It ”, I stumbled across the following phrase just after the chapter about music festivals;

How to rage:

Get a balloon and a best friend.

Go to a festival in the desert.

Be 24.

Back then I mocked it ’cause I found it a little bit pretentious. 3 years later right after I came back from my very own first music festival, I can’t help but think she was absolutely right!

I gotta tell you this is the only way to rage in a summer music festival (in my case minus the balloon, plus a bubble toy -which is a must- and all the rest apply).

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Here are some tips for virgins like myself in order to make the best out of your first camp out music festival…

Survival Guide 101 for your first music festival:

  • Alexa Chung and Piniterest will be your number 1 inspirations when packing your things and getting in the mood.

  • Light packing is a must. When I see people carrying suitcases in camping and nagging about it, I feel a strong urge to slap them in the face repeatedly. A big bag pack and your camping essentials is all you need.

  • You might as well bring a fanny pack for your personal stuff. I didn’t have one so I used small purses, attached to neck chains I had from past conferences. I looked cool at first, but my neck was tortured with unbelievable cruelty and I switched to a small bag pack.

  • No matter how big your car is, if you’re planning several rides with 7+ people loaded, you might wanna try loud music and singing all the way through. It’s the only way to survive the heat and the parking problems that would most surely arise.

  • Be open-minded and patient when discussing the different genres of music and how these can be defined in music terms. This discussion will surely last several hours and will never lead to any definite conclusions.

  • Forget manicure of any kind. Your nails will break, the nail polish will go and you will be left with sloppy nails filled with dirt. Go with short cut ‘working girl’ nails, clean and practical.

  • Sleeping bags are not mattresses. If you can’t bring a mattress at least bring a pillow, because your towel will be wet and you might need to wear your sweater.

  • Rail tracks is a good place to camp since you will always find your way back and you will feel cool watching all the people walking by your tent, BUT if you love your buttocks, bring something else to sit on.

  • Festival Outfits were the main thing I packed and they would be perfect for a festival like Glastonbury, Pinkpop, Lollapalooza, Coachella, etc. BUT for a Greek summer free camping festival these are useless.

    The only clothes you need are: lots of bathing suits (literary they would be your second skin), 2-3 pairs of shorts (hotpants, denim, athletic, whatever you like and feel comfortable sleeping in), T-shirts, foulards and sneakers for the concerts (because there is a lot of of dirt, dust and sweat) and CODE RED for girls a sweater and tights for after the concert if you plan to stay out all night till dawn!

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  • You WON’T need: underwear, make up (except for sunscreen & glitter), jewelry, sandals (unless you use them as flip-flops) sleep and an attitude.

  • Be careful! Soap is not a hair cleanser. It will not remove the salt water AT ALL.

  • Boys restrooms are surprisingly cleaner than the girls restrooms (I guess boys prefer nature and next time I’ll do the same).

  • Drinking before the concerts is one of the brightest ideas ever. Especially if you audaciously crash on somebody else’s table and start taking wasted photos with hundreds of hashtags (’cause you’ll definitely want to remember the highlights of the incoherent discussions you’re gonna have)

  • If you’re interested in what the local artists are selling, buy something right away, because when you come back way after the concerts have ended, around 5-6 am, surprisingly enough they won’t still be open!

  • Don’t be afraid of traveling on your own. You never know who you will end up meeting on your way there. Plus the determination with which you will decide the right tents to put your things in is a fantastic “I don’t give a shit” moment! Plus on your way back you won’t need any company since you will be sleeping all time long.

  • If you wear contact lenses practice ways to wear them independently of a mirror and a restroom (I didn’t manage to do it, but I watched others doing it in complete  awe!)

  • Forget about your cell phone. In free camping festivals, electricity to charge your phone is hard to find so you’ll need to save your battery. Use it only in emergencies- when you’ve lost your friends in the crowd or when you’re so wasted you just have to capture the moment.

  • When you face transportation problems, strangers at your own age will happily exchange information with you, but the only ones who will really help you are older locals. (sounds perverted but it’s not).

  • Sometimes random bars in the nearby area can play better music than the actual concerts. So what if you miss a few gigs when you can have a better time at the bar dancing and sharing embarassing stories with strangers…

  • If you feel ugly, drink some booze, put some glitter on (anywhere), dance, blow some bubbles and smile! You’ll immediately feel like a goddess!!!

  • The previous strictly applies for night hours. If you feel ugly in the morning, make sure you wash your face somehow and wear as least as possible so that others direct their looks to your body and not to your face (especially if these others are the cute guys you met the night before). Bikinis are a good solution, much better than my ex’s loose T-shirt and tights combo I was wearing…!

  • KEY LESSON of this festival: BE AUTONOMOUS! You can’t find your friends? Have fun sitting next to the sound engineer (or on top of him). Even when you arrive home and you’re so tired but of course you forgot your keys and of course your mum is at the beach, just spend a couple of hours at the bus station cafeteria. Buy something cold to drink and watch the fashion channel until it’s time to get the bus home… And maybe you’ll arrive at the same time your mum does!

  • And last but definitely not least, deers are the most beautiful animals everrrrr… I would give everything to have their horns and graceful walking…!

    So, let’s keep on RAGING!!! Until next time…!

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THE AMAZING RETRO FASHION OF THE SWINGING SIXTIES!

Having defined myself as a swinging Chelsea girl, it goes without saying that I love everything about the sixties. The music, the lifestyle, the stardom, the attitude and of course…the fashion!!!

I mean miniskirts came along! Tight clothes, heavy makeup and amazing hairdos for both men and women- I am talking about bangs of course. Bell-bottoms, fake furs, overalls, big hats…

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So many movements: mods, hippies, brits, rockers, swingers, teddy boys, psychedelics, new dandies, bohemians…! And all these under the swinging attitude: “we are young, charming, ambitious, talented, super-stylish and above all rebels because we don’t give a damn.”

These past decades of the 20th century were all about bold statements. Especially the magnificent swinging sixties! That’s why we cannot stop referencing them.

However, after the new millennium we’ve entered and since been living the ‘The Age of The Understatement’… (Last Shadow Puppets reference totally intended, because if somebody’s bringing retro and sexy back it’s got to be them!). Everything is mixed up and a chaos has been created. But not a good chaos; nothing stands out. No year or decade is special. No statement is bold enough.

And there’s affection to rent, the age of the understatement, before this attraction ferments, kiss me properly and pull me apart…

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Why are we so fascinated about the past and feel unable to appreciate the now and make it cooler than yesterday?

I believe it shouldn’t be this way; just recycling meaninglessly what we have already seen. Because now we’ve got all this inspiration and knowledge from the past decades, which we should use for our benefit; to make something new. We can create something much more powerful and DARING. There are no more limits. We can mix, match, invent and re-invent ANYTHING we want! With a slight change, because now we do care about what’s going on in the world and we should give a damn. We should put our soul, not indifference, into everything we do. We should start from a complete change of our mentality. We should create awe and a positive chaos. A REVOLUTION.

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And I believe it will happen, because stylish people are dying for a change. The other day I was at a fabulous masquerade party! I was out for some air when a lovely stranger spilled the remaining of my beer all around my butt. We started talking and he said to me: “I wanted to tell you that your fake fur and your bell-bottoms upgrade the aesthetics of the whole town!”I was thinking the same thing about your turban!” I replied. We kissed goodnight and promised each other to meet again someday at a more fashionable place of the world!!!

Every moment is precious and a good excuse for feeling fabulous, confident and stylish!

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My father was born in 1956 in a small village in Northern Greece. He escaped his traditional rural background and became a swinger and a rocker developing a remarkable taste in fashion, music and lifestyle. He left home when he was 18 and started to rock and roll. He studied design an area he had amazing talent in. He could elaborate on Jimi Hedrix’s virtuosity although he never learnt to play any musical instrument. He could appreciate John Lennon’s wit and song-writing while he didn’t even speak English. He proved that taste and style is not something you imitate; it is a state of mind, a way of living and a matter of strong personality and self-confidence.

The swinging sixties were an explosion. After that anything became possible. The doors to freedom have been wide open since then. You can do whatever you want to, or at least you dare to give it a shot. We can dress up, express ourselves, have fun, live the moment, explore the world, reject societal norms, mock parental advice, experience sexual liberation and cultural elevation, see absolute freedom as our given and undeniable right.

We can grab the chance to change the world only because we are young and cool; the chance to create a new fairer and more beautiful world. Let’s open our eyes to this world and even see beyond that. Let’s make our every moment count. Let’s make our life fun, passionate and meaningful!

You say you want a revolution…Well, you know we all want to change the world… You better free your mind instead…Don’t you know it’s gonna be all right all right all right…..

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Everything That I’ve Come To Expect. Friendship, Loneliness and All the Space Between…

You don’t know what is like to listen to your fears” sang the Beatles in their classic hit “Hey Bulldog”, lyrics stuck into my head these past few weeks.

My biggest fear has always been loneliness. And now I’m facing it in all its greatness. And it is everything that I’ve come to expect… and so much more. Fear justified; loneliness literally sucks. I have friends, dear friends but no best friends and currently I have no boyfriend either, which means I feel like I have no one to talk to. For years, I was dreading this moment and now it’s here.

I know that the sun is supposed to shine again and all that, but for now, this thought alone does not necessarily make me feel any better. However, turning into a pathetic, weak creature is not a choice for me, because that is exactly what I stand up against. Now it’s the time to put all my theories into practice. I am not ok and I have to do something about it.

That’s why I decided to open up and go to that trip to Athens. That’s why I dare a little more when it comes to arranging something with new or old acquaintances. And I think that this is a start. First and foremost the fact that I acknowledge the tough position I am in. I AM LONELY. It’s hard to admit, but liberating at the same time. Secondly, opening up myself is my first move towards a complete change, a fresh, brand new start! I will come out of it stronger and wiser and I’m not pep talking myself. Being lonely was my ultimate fear and now I am facing this fear. So when I will get over it, this fear of mine will be broken and I will be scared no more. And there is also this paradox: I’d never thought I would say this, but although I feel lonely, I feel better than before! I feel like my soul has been magically cleansed from superficial feelings and relationships. In this way it signaled a positive change in me. Everybody keeps telling me that I seem different in a good way and I can’t help but think that this is because I got rid of all the negativity and it shows! I remembered how it is to go out, to have fun, to stay up all night till dawn when cute bakers offer you sweets! I remembered how it is to be spontaneous, to organize trips, to try new things, to have new crashes, to flirt…!

Swingingly enough I’ve just joined the Stg. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and it is fabulous in a dark way! So, let’s drink to that! The time to feel better is now; now that I am getting rid of any burden that was stuck on my back for so long. I guess I have to be light, if I’m going to fly!!! Cheers!!!

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And I figured that it’s better to have a few friends that are good to you and love you, than to have ‘best friends’ that are absolutely toxic! Better safe than sorry!

George Salamas in his article ‘Toxic Friendships’ for Beaute magazine wrote: [sic] “Toxic friends have the talent to hurt you, when you can’t even realize it. It is a complicated, slow and poisonous process. They are the friends who will always be there for you on your biggest disappointments; when you break up, get fired or experience a bigger loss, they are there to offer consolation. But when you are happy and have numerous successes they mysteriously disappear and will never congratulate you or ask you about it. Real friends prove themselves when they share with you your joys not only your sorrows, when they are happy because you are happy. Toxic friends support you when you’re down probably because deep down they feel better about themselves, while they tend to systematically betray you, criticize you and undermine you everytime you are feeling good, happy and successful”.

We have all, even just once, invested too much love on the wrong ‘toxic’ people, but trust me when I say this, no good deed gets lost; love and kindness always come back to you, but not necessarily from the people who received yours.

I know of only one duty in life and that is to love.” Albert Camus.

And after all these thoughts and experiences (pleasant and unpleasant), I’ve reached some conclusions about friendships:

1) Men are definitely better friends than women. They are not disgustingly jealous, they are more loyal friends and they have a better sense of humor, for sure.  (I also love sexy bromances!!!)

2) Best girl-friends end up devouring each other. Big girl gangs too, because there are too many female egos together. But 2 girls that are “besties” and do everything together, they will turn into “beasties” and end up disliking or even hating each other. And that’s a law.

Do I seem extremely pessimistic so far? I bet you think that I dislike all girls and from now on I will choose only guy friends. No and no! Just wait. The previous 2 were realizations about friendships. The conclusions come next and seem pretty optimistic and eye-openers to me!

First, I decided I hate labels as much as I hate stereotypes and I am determined to abolish them from my life once and for all. Stereotypes like ‘men and women cannot be friends’ are stupid. But labels like best friends, good friends, bad friends, frenemies, the one, the only one, the worst boyfriend, the best hook up and all that stuff are meaningless, misleading and above all, mean. Why should a friend be better than another? Why should a person simply be better that another? What is this thing that makes a friend the best? The fact that you were both lonely at the same time? Why is a boyfriend right and more suitable than another boyfriend? And what makes somebody ‘the one’? Have you met all the people on this planet? Why do we always have to compare people like they are merchandise?

No person, friend, lover or enemy is better or worse than another. We should judge people in our lives individually, each one for what they are and for how we feel about them. So, I don’t have a best friend and that’s great, because I’ve trusted people, who  didn’t deserve my trust; they were making me terribly unhappy, fueling me with tons of jealousy and negative energy. I am not making that mistake ever again. We should hand our trust with caution.

But having no best friend doesn’t mean that I am alone. I feel lonely, but I am not alone. I have friends that I truly love and no one of them is better or the best. Each of them is special to me for different reasons. We don’t have to meet or talk every day. We don’t have to share all the exact same interests. And that’s cool because I can do different things with different people and communicate in different ways.

“Besties” equal: over-dependency, over-sharing, obligations, whining and loss of privacy, something like having a relationship with a very jealous boyfriend; for me it’s the feeling of asphyxiation! Real friends equal: love and respect even if they are not always around. I have girlfriends that I love like sisters, but there is some space between us, we’re not one thing.  I think it’s stupid to be one thing with a friend to the point where people even confuse the two of you. As a person I need my space in order to breathe and be who I want to be! I don’t want to have somebody always attached to my side; a dead carcass to carry around. I am not insecure; I can and want to be on my own sometimes.

The other conclusion is that relationships change, whether we like it or not. And that’s why we shouldn’t bother labeling them also. The change in every relationship is inevitable; it’s part of the process and we have to accept it. What doesn’t change though is what a person means to us and how we feel about him; if the feelings are real. For example, if you had a great love and then you break up, this love cannot be totally lost. I believe it’s possible to still love that person and even keep him in your life, but not as a lover of course.

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And two relatively close friends may grow apart for several reasons, without changing how much they care about each other. If they used to go out every week, now they could go out once every 3 months, but not lose touch with each other’s lives. Sometimes distance makes relationships grow stronger, while definitely the lack of personal space could destroy every relationship.

For me being independent and free, without having to apologize about it is the only thing that matters! And the most important thing of all is love! So, get rid of all the people that are incapable of love. Even if that means fewer people in your life; the love will not be lessened, it will be bigger, stronger and truer than ever! I can guarantee that! As I read in a beautiful quote yesterday “There are no good or bad people. There are simply those who have been loved and those who haven’t”.

And also love goes with forgiveness. I know it’s hard to forgive and forget, but as some wise man once said, “sometimes the first step to forgiveness is realizing the other person is a complete idiot”. I’m joking of course. Forgive those who have hurt you because you are not an idiot. And I personally forgive those who betrayed me because I AM NOT PERFECT either. I’ve never been and I will never be, but I feel absolutely spectacular in my own imperfections!!!

How to Visit Paris as if You Don’t Give a Damn. The Cool Guide to Go French Yourself.

1# On the airport make sure to grab every map they offer for free. You can use it later to impress fashionable middle-aged good-looking Italians.

2# Choose to land at Charles de Gaulle airport. You will spend tons of money and get lost for sure, but go big or don’t go at all, right?

3# Visit the Louvre for free just because you look hardly past 18. Ask the security guard about the location of Venus of Milos and on the way, spot another Venus statue and confuse the two, until you realize that this one has got hands.

4# Appreciate Michelangelo Pistoletto’s art, as if he had always been your favorite artist. Become one of his living installations.

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5# Spend two nights in an expensive hotel called “Canal Saint Martin” situated just beside the canal, but never actually see the canal.

6# Travel with a young gay couple and make sure you spend most of the nights in the same room, sometimes even sharing the same bed. For good measure, pick the side of the bed that is facing the wall. Or better still, simply forget about sleep.

7# Save money by staying at the gay couple’s dorm. Maybe one of the two would be Spanish and enjoy cooking you Spanish delicacies.

8# Visit expensive Brand stores with no money or appropriate dress code, but with a lot of attitude.

9# Pass Champs-Elysees like it’s not that big of a deal and find yourself drinking iced lemonade on Place de la Concorde without even realizing you’re there.

10# Visit the Eiffel Tower. Ignore the actual Tower and just fool around and take photos in a sophisticated way, lying on the grass beneath it, pretending to have a French picnic.

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11# Stay at a hotel just 2 metro stations away from Belleville, but prefer to have drinks in decadent bars near Place d’Italie.

12# Go out for dinner and pick a fight with all of your friends. Then eat on angry mute mode at an expensive restaurant that you can’t afford. After that spend the night at a house you’re not invited and sleep uncomfortably on thin sofa pillows. The next morning remember to leave without your contact lenses.

13# Use your charm when talking to French strangers. One of them might be carrying your suitcase later to the nearest metro station and then to the right metro station.

14# Visit Notre Dame late at night with a stinky pitogyros at hand and necessarily a hat. Later, dance syrtaki across the banks of the river Seine.

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15# Pretend that you are fluent in French. Even when they are speaking to you in English, act like you just heard it in French.

16# Stay illegally in Disneyland for 4 days, ride the buses and shop at the local stores, but never bother visiting the actual theme park.

17# Have only a third of a banquette for breakfast and feel fabulously French instead of broke when you do it. Then, ride the bus and the subway without buying any tickets. In fact, avoid tickets at all times if you can simply jump the fence or enter simultaneously with another passenger’s pass.

18# Visit Centre Pompidou a few hours after midnight when it is closed. Sit outside and discuss with strangers about attempted suicides from its top floor.

19# Avoid visiting Montmartre and Moulin Rouge because hanging in Disneyland dorms making a remake of Shakira’s “La Tortura” video is much more fun! (#not)

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20# Take the last subway. By all means, do not consider getting off at the last stop. Go all the way to the station. When you arrive there and the subway closes and you’re stuck, ring the alarm twice or thrice if you want. When they come to set you free act like you understand French but avoid eye contact or any explanations with the officer. Be rude. Do not follow instructions and step out of the metro and into the restricted engine area. Most importantly, when you do get off the subway which will restart only for you, make sure you do not inform other innocent tourists who are about to make the same mistake by riding the subway. Just go away. And remember to smoke a good deal of weed before you attempt this one; it will lift this experience to a whole new level.

 

 

P.S.: Been there and done all of the above. And trust me; it was the best trip of my life so far!

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The Addiction Of Taking Risks

A few days ago I took part in an induction of new members for the global non-state organization of AIESEC. The previous day had been such a crappy one. It had been my name day and also the day I had a huge fight with a close friend. It was so cruel and unfair but you know I’ve experienced way worse and I am used to people, and life in general, being awful to me so I cannot be brought down so easily anymore…”When it’s just one of many bullets, you will bite, while waiting for a ray of light…”

And talking about a ray of light, let’s get back to the induction now…! I’ve learnt so much and although I was a little sad and upset, in no time I felt better and I had a big smile on my face! Almost a year ago, when I’d left my theatrical group, I’d felt like I could never have something similar again to fulfill me and I had been very sad for a long time. But who knew that AIESEC would come in my life and would actually be even better? It is such a much more meaningful cause to be a part of!

In this first induction we talked about leadership and I was asked to choose the approach that I was better at: problem solving, being a world citizen, self awareness or empowering others. Before this terrible fight, I would have chosen the empowerment for sure. But that day, after what had happened, I questioned myself. I love making others feel comfortable and good about themselves, but I had miserably failed my friend, that’s for sure. So, I went with my gut and chose self-awareness. I know who I am, my weaknesses and my strengths. I have found the things that I am most passionate about. I feel comfortable in my own skin and I believe in me. I dream big and I seize the day! So, I wore my ‘self awareness’ tag proudly on my chest!

Another thing I heard at the induction and really stuck in my head was the following. We were talking about taking risks when one of the project managers said: “Once you step out of your comfort zone, it’s a lot easier to do it again. It actually becomes something addictive. Taking risks makes you thirsty for even more risks. You cannot settle, you want more.”  And that is absolutely true! When you start taking chances, you want more; more risks, more adventure and more craziness in your life. Because you gradually become self-confident, fulfilled and happy!

Creating an instagram account, and after that, this blog, were minor risks for me. But guess what happened today. Ray Brown’s account followed me after liking and commenting on my reposted photo featuring one of his garments. He even went so far as to write a second comment addressing me with my first name, not my username! It may sounds irrelevant to you, but it made my day. I mean it wasn’t Tom Ford (my all time favorite designer!) but still…! Ray Brown’s company does what I dream of doing! He has been dressing rockstars for over 30 years! He is currently based in London and dresses musicians such as Alex Turner and Miles FUCKING Kane!!! I’m seriously considering sending him my resume via mail. I mean why not? The worst case scenario is he will never answer. So what? There is no way for me to make it and do what I love, if I don’t take certain risks like this one.

So, I realized that everything begins with knowing who you are and what you want and in order to do that, you need to take some risks. And it’s the only way to be happy, because if you cannot help or change yourself, then how can you change your life or help others or even make this world better? “I’m starting with the man in the mirror and I’m asking him to change his ways, and no message could have been any clearer, if you want to make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and then make a change!” sang Michael Jackson and that is what I taught my amazing students this week! I taught them to love themselves and embrace all their virtues and vices, to love life and to be brave. Because we are all equal, beautiful and we deserve to be happy! (Credits to the inspirational Lady Gaga!)

And that changed my mind about my ‘lack of talent’ to empower others. I’ve come to the realization that if you know who you are and have self-confidence, then you can certainly empower others. Or at least you can try; the success of your attempts does not lie in your hands anyway. I can’t solve everybody’s problems, because they are not my problems and because everybody has to stand up for himself. If somebody is unhappy, that is his problem and nobody else’s. I always look at myself first, deal with my own problems, correct my own mistakes and then try to help others. But I can’t help somebody if he doesn’t even try to help himself. It’s impossible and meaningless.

And of course not everybody appreciates your help. And you know what? I give no fuck about all the people who are filled with hate and ingratitude and enjoy criticizing others, so that they can feel better about themselves. They can take all this hate, ingratitude and harsh criticism and shoved up their asses. I am fed up with insecure miserable people and I give no fucks for what they think about me.

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I absolutely love and embrace who I am. Sounds cocky and selfish? I give no fucks.

At least I am honest and straightforward. I say what I want and when I want to say it. I am not hiding. I am not weak and I don’t envy or blame others for everything that goes wrong in my life. I respect myself and I respect others, although rarely do others respect me. But it’s ok. Because life is far too short and it’s a shame to humiliate our precious moments. Be kind. Don’t disrespect or drag other people down. If you want a change, go and make one. Open up your eyes and see what you are missing out of. Be who you want to be and do it now.

A few years ago I read an article with 14 steps everyone needs to take in order to be happy. I was so fascinated that I wrote down all the steps and I keep revisiting them from time to time. I also remember some of the steps by heart and I totally believe they are absolutely true.

Step 5 said: “Don’t take everything seriously. The things that are truly important in life are so few. And being serious all the time makes us look completely ridiculous.”

Step 9 said: “Get rid of anything or anyone that oppresses you, depresses you and does not let you fly. Get rid of the liars, the flatterers, the prudes, the ungrateful, the quarrelsome, the lazy, the useless, the weak, the fat and the ugly people in your life. You are in danger of being assimilated in such a troublesome environment”.

Because you know family, friends, boyfriends and girlfriends are our reflections. And we all have certain values we live by, and we want the people close to us to respect them. I personally cannot stand or understand pessimists. I found their need to blame the world, to bring other people down and to impose their unhappiness on others, absolutely absurd. I also can’t stand people who depend on others because they can’t depend on themselves. You cannot demand things from others. We only have control over ourselves. People who attack other people because they’re unhappy disgust me. I’ve been through so much pain over the past months, but I’ve NEVER tried to hurt or bring other people down.

And I can’t stand those who are miserable all the fucking time. I mean seriously if you’re unhappy, DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT! We live the life we choose. PERIOD.

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Try being pleasant for a change…

Like I have quoted before “Never get tired of searching for Beauty in your life”. Beauty not Ugliness. Kill the ugliness and make your life beautiful. Make the first move towards a positive change and the rest will come. And then keep coming…It’s addictive, remember? I highly recommend watching the TEDx Talk by the inspiring Sakis Tanimanidis – The definition of YOLO, where he says: “Be more open to risks and don’t be afraid of failure. The greatest risk (and in my opinion the greatest failure) is to take no risks at all. Start taming the waves today. Because you only live once.” And now I have to stop, because I realized how sick it is that I have quoted too many people on a single post.

Search for love and beauty people! Take risks, start living, be open and kind because you never know who you are hurting (yourself included). It’s simple, just smile and give tons of love!!! YOLO!

The Things I Gained After I’d Lost You

We all have a certain idea about heartbreak. For me the strongest heartbreak memory has been the one I experienced 3 years ago when I lost myself after inexplicably losing the guy I had madly fallen for. It lasted several months and went through different stages; some were painful, some were relieving and some were shameful.

However, nearly two months ago I got out of a “long-term” relationship and what I experienced was a moment of clarity rather than heartbreak. I remember going out on a beautiful December night and out of nowhere listening to my ex now boyfriend being such a slob attempting to break up with me in the most graceless and tacky way. And right then I felt like my heart turned into ice and I couldn’t feel a thing.

It had been one of the worst periods in my life, since I lost my father, and it was like I couldn’t feel any more pain. Shocked and emotionless I stood up and left. I needed some fresh air and a ride home where I could calmly think what had just happened and probably burst into tears. No tear was shed from my eyes that night or on the nights that followed. And I am a person who cries a lot. I mean a lot.

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I got home and rushed to my room. But as soon as I got there I realized I had nothing to let out. I ate some dinner and switched on the TV. The astonishingly good-looking face of Michael Fassbender immediately lifted my spirits. And at that moment I realized 2 very important things.

First, breakup is not a bad thing. Loss is what brings you back to life, especially during dark periods in your life when you feel like you’ve lost your purpose. Loss breaks you and fixes you at the same time, and the fixed self is always stronger than the old self.

The second thing I realized is that we spend too much time grieving and being angry at the person we used to be with. It is a meaningless waste of our precious time. Whether they broke up with us or they made us break up with them, anger won’t bring absolution or justice. Life has never been fair anyway. Instead of wasting all this time cursing and regretting we should be thanking the ones who left us; simply because they did us a favor. When something is not working, there is no fucking way is gonna work in the future either. The sooner you get out the better.

The next days after the breakup were extremely better than what I had anticipated. Like a huge burden was lifted from my back and with that gone my luck finally turned! I could see clearer, I found the self that I had lost. These almost 2 years I spent with him were definitely not a blast, but I don’t regret a single moment either.  Or maybe the only thing I do regret is that I handed you a heart worth breaking as Nickelback would have put it, because the difference between me and him is that I have a soul while he sadly lacks one. No hard feelings though so let’s lighten things up…!

And when the broken-hearted people living in the world agree

                                                             There will be an answer, let it be…”

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So, whatever happened just let it be and let it GO! The only thing that matters is to be happy and if the person you’re with cannot or does not want to make you happy then farewell! The only one you should rely on for your happiness is yourself and nobody else. I am much happier now and relieved I didn’t waste any more time. I have more confidence in myself and absolute independence. I also fantasize more without any guilt and I feel much sexier. Rarely do I feel miserable now. I laugh more and get more excited with everything new that comes my way.

And things do come my way now! Things that I craved for in my life, like a job and meeting new people happened to me just after he left! He wasn’t very sociable and optimistic and that dragged me down. It was like he was holding me back.  I got in touch with friends that I really missed because I was with him almost all the time, I have more time for myself and my busier schedule and I also met new nicer people. Single me is much more lucky, attractive and successful! Tons of people understand me better than he ever did. My life now is less dull and much more fun and unexpected!

And trust me when I say this: we mistakenly believe that being in a relationship will make us feel good about ourselves. I’ve never felt better for myself that this very moment. I was trapped in this relationship; trapped by the idea that I should be happy, when I clearly wasn’t. When you are in an unsuccessful relationship, you expect more things and you get disappointed all the time. It wasn’t good for me because I wasn’t becoming a better, fulfilled person. I set myself free from all this drama.  Now I am free, independent and joyful. I can be anything I want. Whatever I need I go and get it. I dare more, I take chances, I am less shy and ashamed, I deal with my demons and I do things my way, I don’t need anybody else! I feel awakened, younger, free and alive!!!

My life with him was so tamed and little… While I “love those who love life and their sadness becomes their power. I love those who are innocent and kind even if life was harsh on them and realize that they don’t know everything, because nobody knows everything. I love those who create something big from something small, for themselves and for the people they love. And they never get tired of searching for beauty in every single day, into other people’s smiles…”Complaint’, Odysseus Elytis.

Do it the swinging and fabulous way and stop wasting your time in mediocre relationships when you can have something much more fulfilling and exciting. Don’t settle for safety. Don’t be led by fear. Brave people are happy people! Chase your dreams! Just go for it! I am determined to find my ideal other half and nothing will stop me!

My Relationship Goals Are: Be with someone that makes you shine! Find someone who will reply a big fat certain ‘YES!’ to the Kook’s question ‘Could you love me when the whole world is crashing all around?’ If you don’t have that move on and keep on searching for your soulmate! Create more chances for yourself, chances for the real happiness you deserve!

Best wishes to all the lonely hearts out there! Love is all we need!!! xoxoscreenshot_2016-08-20-03-22-26-1

GK.The Fiery Portrait of a Father.

George Flame would not sleep. He kept twisting nervously and impatiently in his very expensive white satin sheets. He was looking at the silver screen of his white cell phone, then at the golden chandelier with the incorporated fan to keep him cool, and then all over again. He felt empty. He was famous, popular, successful and incredibly handsome and stylish, but he couldn’t care less. George Flame was unhappy.

He stood up abruptly and put on his freshly and meticulously ironed white shirt. His tall sculptured body was bare underneath. He looked at the mirror and combed his snow white hair precisely 60 times. He wanted to look outside the window, but he kept his blinds down all the time. Balconies were meant to hold flowers not people. And life is worthless if not devoted to the pursuit of pleasure and beauty. George Flame was an absolute hedonist.

He was pouring a glass of white Chardonnay wine when his fabulous white stereo automatically started playing ‘Stairway to Heaven’. He stared in awe at the painting of the 12 Greek Gods just above his bed. He was a firm supporter of this mythical religion. He murmured along with the song and felt himself ascending to Heaven as well. He was the 13th God. Or better else he was the one and only.

He lighted up a Havana cigar. He inhaled the smoke deeply into his throat and lungs. He was a dedicated nonsmoker and hated the smell of cigars. He inhaled deeper. He put it out and started blowing himself with the hair dyer with an uncontrollable drive. He stopped and looked at the mirror again. He looked sharp in a James Bond kind of way but his hair let him down again. He exhaled, cursed and went mad, but deep down he absolutely enjoyed it. George Flame was the man who never compromised.

 

A Tribute to My Very Own Rockstar.

In loving memory of George, a father, an icon, a flame.

No Job?? No Problem! It’s your time to shine…!

Every time I feel depressed about being out of work, there is one song that always lifts my spirit!

 “I don’t care too much for money, money can’t buy me love”,

sang the Beatles back in 1964. What a great song! I know what you are thinking. Another boring motivational essay filled with pseudo-optimism. Absolutely no. I’m writing this post to express my lack of luck (pun intended) and if you don’t have a job either and find yourself feeling good after reading this, it will be because you’ll realize that people (me) have it way worse than you, so take it easy.

But first let’s chill out with the song!    The Beatles- Can’t Buy Me Love

 

Quite ironical isn’t it? The Beatles singing a song like that when they were like millionaires? But this is not the point and I love the Beatles anyhow; they worked hard and took risks to make it, so I leave no room for judgment here. But let’s get back to my story. Everything started back in 2011, the year I graduated high school and started college. It was the year that the Greek economical crisis surfaced (I am Greek by the way). Little did I understand about all these, so I started my academic education more optimistic than ever. My major was English Language and Literature.

I used to dream about an English literature master in a British university or postgraduate studies on theatre and cinema (a huge Shakespeare devotee!). I was so naïve. My parents explained to me over and over again that after college I would have to find a job. I was OK with that, but “that” was not OK with me. My ideal plan was to finish college, find a job (any job), raise some money, since I would be living under my parents’ roof and protection, and then try my luck abroad. I even subscribed to a British job research site to receive job applications from the UK. I was so over the top and couldn’t care less.

So for 3 years I rocked and rolled, not worrying about a thing, only dreaming of my bright future! I travelled a lot, I joined a theatrical group, met new people and life was so fabulous!!! On my senior year my mum made it clear that I had to start looking for a job or at least filling in my resume. I did not fight her; instead I took up a volunteering position as an English teacher for a few months to please her. Then I completed my college internship, again as an English teacher. I never dreamed of becoming a teacher in the first place, but at least I got something to put in my resume and a few money deposits on my bank account.

The end to the most exciting period in my life was coming down on me really fast. That summer of 2015 was the summer that I started looking for a job. A few months went by, a bunch of resumes were sent and I got not a single response. I start panicking. What the fuck? I thought it would be pretty easy. I had such confidence when I gave my first resume to BENETTON for the position of the sales assistant. I was young, good-natured, educated and easy on the eyes. I thought that was all it would take. Then, followed ZARA, TOMMY HILFIGER and many others, but still I got nothing. I started answering ads, but still nothing came out of it.

I decided to postpone my graduation for one last semester. I needed more time; I couldn’t face adult life yet. I took up some more theatre classes and started fashion design seminars, anything to keep me busy and make me feel useful, creative and productive. My first interview came in late November of the same year from an electronic chain store. I was so nervous I totally blew it. They called me back for a try-out which I also messed up and of course I didn’t get the job. I continued searching and applying non-stop. I attended job fairs, worked on my resume and explored new options. I got an interview with INDITEX and I even auditioned a couple times for TV commercials (don’t get excited- they were supermarket commercials and even there, I didn’t get picked).

However, little by little all these obstacles made me stronger. I started finding myself and acknowledging my talents and potentials. Fashion Design became my obsession and my ultimate dream. I created four collections, did tons of amazing fashion research and even created my first very own garment! But I had no means to pursue fashion studies; I needed a job and I needed it fast.

And then, I got my first job or better else, I experienced a complete failure. This experience made me hate employers, sales and work in general. I was hired after three interviews in an eyewear store, only to be fired a week later. I was crushed. I couldn’t understand what I did wrong since they spent no time training me or even explaining anything to me. I performed every little task they asked me to. Soon enough I found out that it was a common procedure for them to hire a new girl every week and then giving her the sacks, so that she wouldn’t have any working rights (health insurance, etc.). It made me sick. It took a while to find myself and get back on track.

Meanwhile, I graduated from college and decided to search for a teaching job now that I had my degree. I had the experience and the qualifications and considered that the conditions would be much better if I worked as a teacher. I have already told you about my luck so you can easily imagine that the only interview I got was from a small English private school run by horrible unprofessional people with no work ethic at all. They knew nothing about teaching, asked me inappropriate questions (how much money do you think you deserve? And how good do you think you are?), offered me the humiliating salary of 60 Euros per month and informed me that I could receive generous bonuses if and only if every single student of mine would come hug me and kiss me during the breaks and offer me presents such as flowers, drawings, etc. I thought they were kidding, but alas they weren’t. Then, they left me in a classroom waiting for 2 hours because they simply forgot about me. They called me after a month to offer me the job and provided me with a book (a student’s not a teacher’s book and without any PC software material) and asked me to make a syllabus for the whole year. I struggled to do it and when I asked them for some clarifications, they couldn’t give me any. They told me on which date I would start teaching, but they never called me back. And when I called them, they said they wouldn’t work with me without giving me any explanations. I was devastated but also relieved.

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A few weeks later I started working as a private tutor and a translator which meant little money, tons of work and no security, but I had no other choice (it was over a year now since I had entered the job hunt). If you think that’s the end of my troubles you couldn’t be more wrong. A few weeks after I started teaching, I lost my father. I’m not gonna talk about the loss and the pain, I am not writing a melodrama here.  Let’s just say that this is the black year 2016, where all the rock stars drop like flies and my father was definitely rock star material! The only thing I will say is that I started looking for a job again, but not to fulfill my dreams anymore, only to support my family.

The story goes on pretty much the same. I gave a couple of interviews in another English private school. It was a little boost for my confidence, but nothing more. And then I got another fake interview. I answered an ad asking for a secretary. They called me back and gave me instructions for their office that led me to a deserted place. Literary, I followed their instructions and found myself in an abandoned place, surrounded by demolished buildings and a couple of whore houses. They had told me to call them back if I couldn’t find it. I just ran. I know… It would make a fine script, wouldn’t it?

What I mean to tell you is that it’s perfectly fine if you keep failing to find a job. You are not the only one and really it’s not your fault. We are living in very strange times but even if life is hard, we are harder. I didn’t just fail; I learnt a lot and became much stronger. It takes determination, courage and self-confidence to achieve your dreams. I honestly believe that having a job while lacking these wouldn’t do me any good. Money means nothing if you don’t have a purpose in life. All these difficulties gave me time to realize what I want and to find more meaningful reasons to be happy. I won’t lose my smile or any more time feeling bad about myself. I won’t give up, because the more good vibes you put out, the more good vibes you get back.

And that is the meaning of a swinging rock and roll lifestyle! Because the most important thing is how you see yourself, not how others view you. If you feel like a failure, then everyone will feel sorry for you. I am fabulous with or without a job and strong enough to face any future difficulties. And even if life is not good to you, be good to yourself. Put yourself out there, take risks, smile, be generous, appreciate and enjoy all the beautiful little things you are blessed to have in your life. And above all, love passionately and admirably.

Nymphomaniac.

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“Perhaps the only difference between me and other people was that I’ve always demanded more from the sunset, more spectacular colors when the sun hit the horizon. That’s perhaps my only sin.”

Nymphomaniac was one of those movies that really left its stigma on me. I had just experienced a huge heartbreak and felt like I wanted to say so many things, but I couldn’t. And it was like this movie spoke for me, through me. I stepped on the stage and performed a monologue from this movie and it really set my heart free. These words will always have a special meaning for me. It was a rite of passage; it helped me to move on, accept and expose my weakness. So, thank you Lars von Trier.

WARNING! The following monologue does not contain any harsh or sexual language. (Got ya!)

“If you asked him, he would have said that I was the one who declared war. He often took me with him to town, only to hold his coat. It was about this time that a dramatic change happened inside of me. I could suddenly see a kind of order in the mess. It was all very very wrong. I wanted to be one of Jerome’s things. I wanted to be picked up and put down again and again. I wanted to be treated by his hands according to some sophisticated principle that I didn’t understand. And it was not only his hands. It was as everything about him was different, which of course it wasn’t and I knew that in my head and I scolded myself for seeing him in this new light. It was worse than the saying that love is blind. No. Love distorts things or even worse love is something you’ve never asked for. The erotic was something I asked for or even demanded, but not this idiotic love. I felt humiliated by it. And all the dishonesty that follows. You know, the erotic is about saying Yes. Love though, appeals to those instincts locked up in lies. How do you say Yes when you mean No and vice versa. I am ashamed of what I became, but it was beyond my control.”

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