Thursday, February 11, 2016

Bridget Neval, Labels, Spectrums, and Demi Harman

1. Dreamed that: I read about Saskia Burmeister and learn she had anorexia after her Wicked Science Days. I see a photo of her when she had the eating disorder, and she looks quite awful.

It comes time for me to pick my next Aussie TV show. I get confused about it and forget to go to like I usually do.  Finally, I remember, and that makes things a little less confusing.

I learn that the people who make are a bit peeved, because someone left a link to their website, and it leads to something scary. I worry it might be me that did it, but then I remember that I've never left a link to my blog on

I pick a TV show. It ends up being a cartoon TV series. I've already seen one series of it. I'm not overly excited to see another.  

2. Googled Saskia Burmeister and eating disorders to see if there was any truth behind my dream.

I ended up learning that Bridget Neval is the one who had an eating disorder. 

Strangely, I'm seeing this information on Project Gutenberg.

I'm trying to figure out if she has a book on here? Or it could be just articles.  I'm confused.  

3. Disappointed to see that it's just an article...if that, even.  It's more just a rundown of Neval's career.

4. Saw that Neval has a blog, and one of the posts is about her eating disorder experiences.  

Hers was much more severe than mine. Actually, according to her, mine wouldn't have been an eating disorder.  

She has a list of things that ARE an eating disorder and a list of things that ARE not an eating disorder.  Though she does say, it's from her experience. 

To me, it looks like she's saying if your experiences match her own, you have an eating disorder. If your experiences don't match her own, you don't have an eating disorder.  

5. Felt differently than Neval. If I was writing the list, I'd divide it into different types of eating disorders.

I think hers was more internally based and related to depression. It's about self-hatred.

Mine was more externally based. Neval says in her list of not-eating disorder things, Vanity. It’s not motivated by an obsession with being beautiful or conforming to ideals about beauty. It’s motivated by self-hatred.

Mine was very much motivated by a need to be beautiful enough. Then the whole perfectionism/competitiveness thing kicked in.

 I think the vanity and obsessive-compulsive aspects of my personality went out of control.

I don't remember feeling self-hatred or feeling too fat when I was very thin. But I do remember feeling fat at a weight that now would feel very thin to me.

6. Thought that Neval's post reminds me of a post I once read about unschooling. It had the same kind of attitude. People shouldn't call yourself an unschooler unless they confirm to these guidelines.

Also, there are people who don't want other people calling themselves vegetarian unless they conform to certain standards.

Some people are very passionate and narrow-minded when it comes to defining the labels that apply to them. It's annoying.

On the other hand, I can see how it would also be annoying to find people using your labels when you feel they very much don't belong to your club.

For example, how would I feel if someone said they're homeschoolers, yet they send their kids to school.  I question them on this, and they say, well, on the weekends we watch the Learning Channel together.  

Or how about someone who says they're a vegetarian because they don't eat red meat. They eat only chicken and pork.

7. Thought of autism. Do parents of kids with severe autism feel resentful of parents of kids with very mild autism?  I mean do they have an attitude of, Oh God.  Don't act like you know what we're going through. We're totally NOT in the same boat.  

Then I remembered what I was thinking about this week. I was annoyed with the whole On the Spectrum label. I didn't get it, because I thought a spectrum included everyone. It's like a rainbow includes ALL the colors.

My feeling was that everyone should be on the autism spectrum.  Then I read something online that explained the autism spectrum doesn't include everyone. It just includes people with autism. It's a way of showing how there are vast differences in autism experiences.

I started thinking well, why not have a spectrum for a lot of things then?

Now I'm thinking it again.  Well, because I was sitting there feeling lost. Is it okay to tell people who label themselves that they don't fit with the label because their  experience is not close enough to your experience? Is it okay to label yourself as something when your experience and/or commitment is mild compared to other people's?

So, yeah. I totally think we should have a bunch of spectrums.

I'd start with an eating disorder spectrum. I was on the spectrum, but not near Bridget Nevel's place on the spectrum.

I'm on the vegetarian spectrum, and a person who avoids red meat could be on there too.  I'll try not to judge him just as I hope the vegan won't try to judge me.

8. Tried to think of other spectrums. We could have ones for schizophrenia, depression,  personality disorders, cancer, diabetes....

9. Remembered that, earlier this week, I also had the idea of spectrums for fandoms.

It's like, yes, I'm a fan of The Walking Dead, but I'm not to be confused with the people who go to Walking Dead conferences, attend Comic-Con, watch every episode of The Talking Dead, and  religiously follow Norman Reedus's Instagram.

10. Decided there would be a binge-watcher spectrum.

11. Concluded that there should be many other spectrums besides the autism spectrum.

 I'm now okay with people saying things like, She's on the autism spectrum. I'm not okay with people saying, She's on the spectrum.  It makes me feel like they're avoiding the word autism. And also, if it's THE spectrum, we should all be on it. You can't have a THE spectrum and exclude people. It's not fair.

It's rude.

12. Read a little bit more of Bridget Neval's blog and decided she aint one of my peeps.

I found something else that I disagree with.  On her FAQ page, she answers the question of why she left acting. She says, Long story short, I wasn’t confident enough and didn’t like being in an industry that furthered the culture of giving high kudos to people who aren’t doing anything to better society/humanity.

I totally disagree with that.

First of all, some actors do a lot of humanitarian work. They're all charitable and stuff.

Minus the charity stuff, I think film, television, and theater very much betters humanity and society. All those things are art, and actors are a part of that.

Does Neval not think art betters society and humanity?

That's SO different from my way of thinking.

I think art and entertainment are incredibly important.  Life would be so blah without entertainment. So, there's that.  Then also, art can be very influential.

Yesterday, I talked about the white balloon campaign.  Having virtual white balloons floating through cyberspace is supposed to help children who are sexually abused. I think that's kind of bullshit.  But how about a television movie that tells the story about an abused child. I think that's going to reach people in a MUCH deeper way.

13. Thought about how I was very involved with the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation when I was a teenager.

Why? How did that happen? I saw a TV movie about Cystic Fibrosis.

14. Remembered that Cystic Fibrosis can have a spectrum too.

15. Felt that despite Bridget Neval annoying me with opinions so vastly different from my own; I still have a soft spot in my heart for her.

I'm not sure why.

It could be that despite our differences we have something in common. We both have been very open about our feelings and opinions on a blog.

There's a part of me that wants to close the window to Neval's blog and never look at it again.

Then there's another part of me that wants to bookmark it and see if we have anything else in common.

If I keep reading, will I end up liking her?  Or will I end up liking her even less?

16. Bookmarked her blog.

Though I don't know how often I'll read it.  I haven't been that great lately about keeping up with the blogs on my list.

17. Wanted to mention that on the episode of Coronation Street I watched last night, Eileen was watching Prisoner: Cell Block H.

That's the first time I've seen them reference an Australian TV show.

I've seen more mentions of American entertainment—Titanic, Breaking Bad, and It's a Wonderful Life.

Strangely, I don't think I've seen them mention any British TV shows or movies. Or maybe they did, but the reference went over my head.

18. Started watching an episode of Wicked Science.

I can see bits of Bridget Neval in Elizabeth—probably the anger bits and looking down at other people.

In both the things I read, from Neval, I felt she was looking down at other people.

In the first, it was people like me—those who have eating disorders that don't fit into her idea of eating disorders.

In the second, it was other actors.

19.  Wanted to add that I also see myself in Elizabeth, since I have anger about certain things, and I sometimes look down at other people....usually, the ones who have made me angry (Or annoyed)

20. Decided we should get rid of all medical and psychological labels and just call everyone weird.

We're all weird in our own little ways, whether it's something about our personality, our brains, our cells, our organs, our interests, etc.

We're ALL on the weirdness spectrum for at least one reason.

21. Started watching an episode of Home and Away.

Rickie (Bonnie Sveen) is being more tolerable to me now.  Not only is she no longer standing in the way of Ash (George Mason) and Denny (Jessica Grace Smith) getting together; it looks like she might even be willing to help with the relationship.

I might have to eventually take her out of my dislike list and put her in my love list.

22. Saw that this episode was probably the last for Sasha (Demi Harman). She had a good-bye party and then went away on a bus. She's going to school in the city.

Well, actually she left before for school in the city but then she quickly came back. This time it looks like she's gone for good.

23. Looked at IMDb, and saw this was indeed Harman's last episode.

I wonder if she'll ever return.

24. Wondered what Harman plans to do with her post-Home and Away life.

25. Learned from Lord Wiki that Harman joined the cast of Winners and Losers.

I hope Hulu will have that show someday.

26. Learned that Demi Harman is Brooke Harman's sister!

I forgot who that was at first, but Lord Wiki reminded me. She's the actress from Dance Academy and the last season of The Secret Life of Us.

27. Learned that Demi Harman is dating her onscreen man (Alec Snow) in real life.

That's very cool.

I hope they're still together. Because on the show they just broke up. It was sad.  Them being still together in real life would be a happy thought for me.

28. Went to Demi Harman's Instagram.

29. Thought the woman, in the sunglasses, in this photo looks familiar. But I can't think of who she looks like.

Have I seen her somewhere? Or does she just remind me of someone else?

30. Realized she might actually be Demi Harman.

I guess she sort of looks like Demi Harman but not really.  She looks more like someone else.

31. Decided it probably is Demi Harman, and now I'm feeling stupid.

32. Saw that Demi Harman went to New York recently.

I miss it there, sort of.

I wonder when we'll go back.

We have no plans on the horizon, but maybe someday....

33. Saw another photo of Demi Harman where she looks more like someone else than herself.

Maybe the issue is she doesn't much like Sasha.

I'm used to her looking like Sasha.

Although most actors continue to look like themselves when they're playing a character.

34. Thought that maybe Demi Harman looks a bit like Mary-Louise Parker.

35. Thought that here, Demi Harman looks a bit more like Sasha.

You know who else she's been reminding me of the past week or so?  I haven't mentioned it before, because I kept telling myself I was wrong. I couldn't figure out why I saw a resemblance.

Anyway, it's Tracy on Coronation Street.  I think maybe their mouths are similar?

36. Liked Harman's post about happiness. It kind of reminded me of the happiness quote I saw yesterday.

Harman's post says the three essentials for happiness are something to do, something to love, and something to hope for.

I love that.

37. Went to my post yesterday, because I forgot what the other happiness quote had said.

It's from Sheldon Lieberman. His prescription for happiness is Being yourself. Doing what you love. Sharing your gifts. 

I think those are all great happiness ideas.

38. Decided I am usually happy (about 90% of the time), because I have all those things.

39. Liked Demi Harman's very political post.  It's long, so I won't quote the whole thing. I'll just give the first line and a half, which pretty much sums up the whole thing.  It is not Paris we should pray for. It is the world. 

It's mostly about supporting refugees, and remembering they're victims in all this too.

40. Found another good post about happiness.  This one is a quote from Oscar Wilde.  With freedom, books, flowers, and the moon, who could not be happy?  

I was going to argue, at first, that he forgot TV and the Internet. But I don't think those things were around in his days.  I bet if they were, he would have added them to the quote.

41. Wanted to clarify that I'm pretty sure the political post and the other happiness post were quotes as well. They MIGHT have come from Harman's own brain, but they seem to be reposts.

Still, I credit her for supporting the ideas.

I like that she has ideas that I like.

42. Liked Harman's berry photo.

43. Liked this cat photo.

I'm beginning to think I belong on the cat-lover spectrum.

I kind of thought I just liked the cats that are/were part of our family but didn't have cat-love in general.  Now I'm starting to really rethink that.

44. Had my cat love diminished a bit after seeing this photo.

45. Wondered if Demi Harman drew this fox.

It's an impressive drawing.

I wish I could draw that well.

46. Had my cat love restored and doubled with this photo.   Too cute!

47. Loved what's said in this post.  Master the art of observing.  It's a very good idea. I haven't mastered it, but I continue to work on it.