Yesterday it was announced that ‘selfie’ has been named as word of the year by Oxford Dictionaries, and sure why not commemorate the occasion with a selfie:
While it is considered by some to be one of the truest forms of vanity, it is true that, as humans we are certainly quite vain. We wouldn’t leave the house in the morning without spending a few minutes in front of the mirror, whether it is styling hair, covering blemishes, exaggerating cheekbones, extending eyelashes, blusher, lip gloss, eyeliner, mascara, foundation, lipstick, gel, wax, polish. Extend this and highlight that. Or go full-on Barbie or Ken. Then there’s the photo to show it off (not forgetting pouting/duck-face).
There are extremes to all things; No one is “God’s gift” and indeed, think like that and you should be shot down, but everyone should be proud of who they are and how they look. And in this age of profiles, avatars and countless online photo albums, we all like a some good photos of ourselves. of course some people’s idea of a good image of themselves is certainly questionable, the “selfie” is not something to be ashamed of.
It took a while, but I’ve certainly become partial to taking the odd photo of myself. Whether it’s due to living on my own and enjoying sharing my life with a number of people who I rarely see (more on that another day), or that I have grown more confident in my own self-image (I’m sure I’ll get around to writing about that too), but I accept that self-portraiture as no bad thing – it is not new. Technology today may have led to an influx of self-portraits, and the English language brought us to shortening words – making them fun – this is a great thing, and the way that it is changing us is wonderful, and to be embraced. Embrace it or be left behind. Be creative. Accept these things and enjoy them for what they are. Take a photograph of yourself. Embrace technology. Embrace the modern world. Enjoy the word. Just don’t go overboard, yeah.
A few days ago I took a walk around the outskirts of Carlow coming up to sunset to capture some warm autumn colours.
Custom House, Dublin. iPhone 4S
Some of the art work spotted on the streets of Cork.
I’ve mentioned before how much I enjoy markets; I never visited St George’s Market in Belfast often enough. It really brightens up the city seeing so many people enjoying a Saturday/Sunday afternoon just aimlessly browsing the wares and stopping for coffee and a cupcake.
The Cork English Market is no different; lots of fresh produce, and local wares and a fantastic atmosphere. I would buy all the things.
The one thing you will notice about Cork is that Cork people love Cork. Every single Corkonian I’ve met over the years has confirmed this, and my most recent visit to the city, last month, was no different. I’m always reminded of Andrew Maxwell’s sketch on the topic. Anyone I have met who no longer lives in Cork does so only out necessity, whether it is for college or work, but ensure they return as often as possible. Others I know refuse to live elsewhere despite how it may be more convenient to live in a different part of the city.
With its two rivers running through the city, and essentially being an island in the middle, it can be a difficult place to navigate as an outsider (“…the other side of the river.” “Which one?”), but with the right people looking after me (thanks Will!), and Google Maps, I didn’t get too lost.
It’s a beautiful thing. I’ve never felt that way about Belfast, and I don’t know very many who do. It does it’s best, but I couldn’t travel the world telling everyone who much I loved it and yearned to return. However, it is partly due to Corkish people’s love of all things Cork that makes Cork people so lovely. Besides a bitter sense of humour and accent that makes mine sounds like the Queen’s English, they really are a nice people.
While it was a lot smaller than Pride in Belfast, there was a great community feel to the entire day.
Even the guards had a smile on their faces:
Cork City Lord Mayor, Catherine Clancy, who hosted the parade.
Stephen Spillane and Lord Mayor, Catherine Clancy
My hosts for the weekend, Will and Stephen
Me getting my nails done by The Lord Mayor’s sister-in-law. One of those ‘only in Ireland’ moments.
On 4th August a week of events in Cork culminated in a colourful parade through the city, with 3,000 people taking part and cheering at the sidelines. The theme of the parade was ’20 Years of Pride in Ireland’, celebrating 20 years since the decriminalisation of homosexuality.
I was in Cork for the closing weekend’s events of Cork Pride which ran this year between 29th July – 5th August. Sure it was a while ago now, but time has escaped me over the past month, however, please enjoy the photos to follow from this recent trip to the Rebel County. It was a superb weekend and I got to hang out with some great people.
Here are a few snaps from the Family Fair in Fitzgerald’s Park with a dog show, an assortment of sports, music and a lot of laughter. When I arrived it had just stopped raining, then the sun came out and all was good.
Stephen giving it all with his winning handbag-toss.