Monday, 31 March 2014

Latest column for the Daily Beast Emma Woolf On Losing Her 'Girls' Virginity
What happens when a British writer finally gives into the hype and watches her very first episode of Lena Dunham’s hipster extravaganza? An experience about as uncomfortable and unforgettable as Adam and Hannah’s Season 1 sex scene.
They say good news travels fast. Perhaps this explains why it’s taken me two years to get around to watching Girls. I’d never seen a single episode of the hit HBO series until last week. And frankly, I’m still recovering...

Friday, 21 March 2014

ah, such a lovely wedding yesterday! with Jacqui & Dash getting married, their daughter Ellovie & talented poet Michael Lee Rattigan, clowning around outside Chelsea Town Hall & enjoying bubbly...



Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Monday, 17 March 2014

a lovely write-up of one of my recent talks from a student journalist at Exeter University

Is it a nightclub? Is it a spa? No, it's London hottest new fitness craze: Psycle. And I'm just a little bit hooked. This week's column for The Daily Beast

As someone who cycles around 50 miles a week, I thought Psycle would be easy. How wrong I was. You’re in constant movement: cycling standing up, bodies angled forward, then leaning right over, Tour de France style, then seated while using hand weights, then executing multiple push-ups on the handlebars, clapping, stretching, always pedalling in time to the beat. Try cycling standing up, without allowing your upper body to bounce up and down: this is what it means to ‘engage your core’.

With the lights low and the music high, and everyone cycling in unison, white shoes flashing in disco light, there’s an incredible group energy (and I’m really not into group exercise).It induces a kind of physical and mental euphoria I haven’t experienced since my clubbing days after all-nighters on the dance-floor. We vary the bike’s resistance constantly—turning it way up high to Michael Jackson’s Beat It, for example, while simultaneously punching the air. Psycle works your upper body too, with even the men working those ballet arms.

Halfway through the class there’s a single musical track to give you time ‘to do your own thing’. You can cycle fast or slow, as long as you keep time to the beat. I find it a beautiful, meditative few minutes in the darkness, a spiritual sanctuary which really clears my head...

Saturday, 15 March 2014

"But if you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires: To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night. To know the pain of too much tenderness. To be wounded by your own understanding of love; And to bleed willingly and joyfully.”  
The Prophet, Kahlil Gibran

Monday, 3 March 2014

Sheffield-bound tomorrow for International Women's Week!

Here's my latest column for The Daily Beast

Straight-A Anorexics: Are Britain’s Private Schools Breeding Grounds For Anorexia?A new report claims that the perfectionistic, highly competitive environment of the UK’s top academies are making students prone to teen eating disorders...

This wasn’t news to me. From the ages of 11-18, I attended London’s top private girls’ school, along with both my sisters. Although I didn’t develop anorexia until the year after I left, I’m conscious that I conform to the anorexic stereotype: perfectionist, insecure, driven. The latest media reports outline precisely those same characteristics: academic and highly competitive. Individuals develop eating disorders for a range of complex reasons, of course—but of the hundreds of woman and men I have met with anorexia, every one conforms to this profile.

Why should the compulsion to excel—which propels these privileged students to Oxford. Cambridge, Harvard and Yale, among other top universities—also make them acutely vulnerable to eating disorders? To me it makes perfect, dangerous sense that intelligent, driven girls are prone to anorexia. They excel not just at English and Math, Drama and Science and Music, but also at exercise and weight-loss. They strive to be beautiful, popular, self-disciplined, and yes, thin.