What’s Up Wednesday: New York, Weddings, & Lying Low

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What’s new?

I suck at blogging.

This What’s Up Wednesday thing was supposed to put me on a schedule so that I could start blogging regularly again. And then I missed a month worth of Wednesdays. Fail.

But I’m back. I imagine this is because I’ve just spent the last two days at home, lounging about in my PJs, trying to get over the last of my jetlag, so I finally have free time to just blabber on.

The biggest thing that happened in the last few weeks is that I flew to New York for my girl, Cerena’s, wedding.

I haven’t seen the professional pictures yet and I, stupidly, didn’t bother to take any photos throughout the day because I was too busy sobbing and then drinking and then dancing but I managed to snag one that the happy couple was tagged in on Facebook:

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Sunday Post: My Last Weekend in Korea

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The Sunday Post is a meme hosted by Kimba at Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news, recap the past week, and showcase books (and, for me, music) every Sunday.

What’s new?

So this is it.

I’m less than a week away from my big move. In fact, I only have 3 full days left in Korea.

At this moment I’m sitting on my bed, trying my best to calm down after getting overwhelmed with packing and then worrying about every little thing that could possibly go wrong this week. It doesn’t help that in the last 6 hours I’ve had 4 iced coffees and a can of coke.

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Mentally, I’m all ready to go. Even though it’ll be hard to say goodbye to my students, coworkers, and friends this week, I’m really looking forward to starting my new job and exploring my new home.

Even though I’ve had the odd night of weird dreams and occasional moments of doubt, this has been the calmest move of my life so far.

It helps, of course, that I have an incredible amount of support from friends and family who’re also keeping me from having an epic freakout every day.

Today actually marks the 2 year anniversary of being in Korea. I’d usually fill a post up with words of reflection on these occasions but I’m going to save it for Wednesday night – my last night here – so keep an eye out for that one. 🙂

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(A Late) Sunday Post: Back to School

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The Sunday Post is a meme hosted by Kimba at Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news, recap the past week, and showcase books (and, for me, music) every Sunday.

What’s new?

The new school year started: A batch of fresh-faced 1st graders arrived, staff were moved around to different offices, and the old students returned looking quite grown up. As everyone piled into the gymnasium for the school’s opening ceremony, I actually got quite teary-eyed (surprise surprise!): I’ve been teaching the 3rd graders for 2 years now but won’t be around to see them graduate; My 2nd graders have finally shrugged off last year’s wild beginnings and have returned with a long-awaited maturity; And the little ones? I won’t get to know them at all.

Seeing all of the kids together in one place finally made me realise that I’m really going to miss them. I love them all and worry about their future. They deserve an English teacher who loves what she/he does and puts 110% into teaching them. I’m not saying I’m the world’s greatest but, for the last 2 years, I’ve put my heart and soul into what I do because my kids deserve it. I can only hope that whoever replaces me doesn’t come here just to waste time and earn a bit of money (because, believe me, there are plenty of those). My kids won’t go to college so their English classes aren’t a priority. That doesn’t mean they only deserve minimum effort from their teacher.

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4 TV Shows & Films That Made Me Comfortable About My Sexuality While Growing Up (And 1 That Should Have But Didn’t)

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Three years ago, after a trip to the LGBT Museum in San Francisco, I made the decision to publicly come out to my friends, family, and whoever else should stumble upon this blog. It wasn’t a huge surprise to those close to me; It’s not as though I’d ever hidden it. I had just never taken the opportunity to talk about it so openly.

My sexuality was always something that was just a natural part of me. It was as natural as my having two arms. Or green eyes. It was something I was born with and I didn’t feel the need to scream about it.

But after coming out, I realised how important that declaration is. After hitting the ‘publish’ button on this blog, I sat in fear over what the reaction of those around me would be. I knew most of my loved ones were open-minded but a part of me was still terrified that they’d react in a horrible way.

They didn’t.

Coming out is a huge part of someone’s life. We’re about to cross into a world where we’re more comfortable and upfront about who we really are. And we’re also about to discover who will join us and who will reject us.

I was lucky in that I was surrounded by good people. Not everyone’s that fortunate.

Every day, people are cast out of their homes after coming out. They’re beaten and abandoned and left to face the world alone. A friend of mine recently told me that he’d been considering coming out to his parents even though he knew it meant he’d never see them again. He just can’t stand that he has to keep lying to them about who he really is.

The best thing we can do is let those people who are rejected from their families, their homes, and their communities know that we’re here for them when others aren’t. Everyone deserves love.

And that’s why, as last Sunday was National Coming Out Day, I wanted to do a little personal and fun post to celebrate it.

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25 Happy Days

I’m a quarter of a way through the 100HappyDays challenge and the verdict so far?

Well, I actually do think I’m happier.

I’m not quite on top of the world happy but it feels as though I’ve hit a good spot on an uphill climb.

Whether it has anything to do with the challenge itself or just that I’m feeling a bit more settled here in Naju is anyone’s guess. I’m not going to try to analyse it; I’m just enjoying the feelings of content that keep coming my way.

As I mentioned before, all the pictures (and video) I’ve been snapping for the challenge have been put up on my Instagram but, for those who don’t follow me or don’t have an account, I thought I’d share the first 25 days of happiness with you on here. Enjoy …

Two of my favourite students who stayed after class to chat. #100HappyDays #Day1 #Naju #Korea

A post shared by Ceri (@ceripadley) on

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Artifact: A Reason to Not Steal Music

artifactsite I come from the last generation to buy music on tape.

While I did own one record (*ahem* this one), by the time I left primary school, my feeble tape collection consisted of both Spice Girls albums (90’s child, me), a hand-me-down Take That album from my older cousin (back when they were doing their dancey thing with Robbie), singles by Peter Andre and Robson & Jerome and, of course, the star of every child’s school disco: Whigfield’s Saturday Night.

As you can see, my music collection was off to a cracking start.

When I was 13, my parents got me a CD player for Christmas and everything changed. From that point on, it was pop music and my CD collection that dominated my adolescence. There was no Youtube or Spotify. When it came to getting hold of a tune we liked, we’d head out to town every Saturday with our pocket money and pop into Woolworths to buy something that was currently gracing the charts (and hopefully still in stock). Lazy days indoors were spent flicking between MTV (back when the ‘M’ stood for ‘Music’ rather than ‘Mindless reality’), The Box and VH1 in hopes that a music video by one of our favourite musicians/bands would suddenly appear.

As the years went on, my taste in music changed dramatically but I still continued to buy CDs. Then, five years ago, I joined the modern world and got my hands on an iPod. It was nothing big or fancy – Just a purple iPod Nano that could hold 16GB worth of songs – but it changed the way I collected music in a huge way. Like the majority of people these days, I discovered that you could get your hands on most music for free.

After sampling tracks on Spotify or Grooveshark, one seemingly innocent (but completely illegal) click of a mouse would have a full album downloaded and ready to put on your MP3 player in no time at all. Programs like Utorrent or bitTorrent were especially helpful to those of us struggling to pay rent, feed ourselves and combat debt. Instead of saving what little money we could to go towards an album we’d been craving, we took it for free and played it to our heart’s content without a second thought.

Of course, I’m preaching to the choir here.

90% of people with access to the internet and an MP3 player know that music can come for free if we want it too. We also know that it’s against the law.

But, until recently, like most people, I’d not really given a thought about the impact my actions were having on the music industry.

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Are You Dating a Disney Prince?

walt-disney-screencaps-the-walt-disney-logo-walt-disney-characters-31872968-2560-1440Over the years there have been many debates about the effects Disney has on our young minds; The most common being whether these tales give us unrealistic expectations about our love life.

Well, I’m about to shoot that horse in the face and end that argument and say I was never under any illusions about how real life goes. Most of my friends growing up came from broken families, I watched my parents work hard at their marriage and prove that it wasn’t a breeze, and, oh yeah, I was always well aware that films weren’t real.

Today’s question is aimed at the straight ladies and gay guys who fall upon this post because we’re going to look at the Disney princes.

I want you to cast your mind back to your favourite Disney prince.

I’m not talking about your favourite Disney prince today because, let’s face it, we all know who would win that award for those of us with working sexual parts:

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I truly believe this character was created as a thank you to those of us who remember Disney before computer animation.

Let’s see that pouty face one more time …

tumblr_mjkoi8iJ2p1s4fqpeo1_500Seriously, I’m 26 and fantasising over something designed to burn the loins of women everywhere. Thank you, Disney.

Anyway, let’s dive further back.

Cast your minds back to yesteryear; Back to the 80s or 90s when Disney princes were in abundance and you definitely had one childhood favourite.

Think about that Disney prince … And then think about the type of man you are generally attracted to today. Is there a similarity?

Let’s take my childhood favourite, Aladdin (not technically a prince but you get the idea):

aladdinAnd then let’s look at what kind of man I tend to fall for these days:

Dark hair; Roguish; A mischievous, playful side; Not afraid to goof and make fun of himself; No huge, brawny muscles; Physically kind of scrawny; Someone who’s either poor/working class or has worked their way up from that background; Someone always on the lookout for adventure.

Coincidence? 

I asked a few of my girlfriends to think of the same two things – their favourite childhood princes and the type of man they desire these days – and the answers seemed to follow a similar pattern too.

My friend Rachel also said Aladdin and, for as long as I’ve known her, she’s always lusted after dark, middle-eastern men not afraid of getting into trouble and having adventure.

My girls Cerena and Rhi named the Beast:

normal_beautyandthebeast_3998The type of men Cerena usually falls for are muscular, big, protective guys, usually guarded and in need of coaxing out from their shells. These men usually have a dark past and quite a temper but can also be little puppy dogs.

And it’s no secret that over the years I’ve known Rhi, she definitely has a penchant for big, physically strong manly men. The fact that Beast had that incredibly old house with the world’s largest library would also obviously have appealed to my bookish, historian, archivist friend.

So are all these isolated incidents?

Cerena posed the question on her Facebook and from the selection of responses we received, everyone seemed to have a match.

Our favourite Disney princes could easily describe the men we find attractive as adult women/men.

And then, to get all Carrie Bradshaw on your arses, I couldn’t help but wonder: Is our taste in men influenced by the Disney heroes of our childhood? Or are we predisposed to a certain ‘type’ even from childhood?

Who was your favourite Disney prince? What kind of men do you tend to fall for now? Is there a similarity? Do you think it’s a coincidence?

Leave a comment below.