Thursday, 1 December 2011

12 days of Buffy : welcome to the hellmouth

I took advantage of the toddler's lunchtime nap today by lovingly opening my Buffy the Vampire Slayer collector's edition boxset and settling down to watch the opening episode of season 1 : "welcome to the hellmouth".

As soon as the theme tune started, I had goosebumps and tears immediately welled up in my eyes. No other programme has ever had such an effect on me and I was glad to watch it in private, as I confess I feel very possessive over the whole series.

For those who have never watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer, 16 year old Buffy Summers and her mum have moved to Sunnydale from Los Angeles after Buffy was kicked out of school for setting fire to the gym (to destroy a vampire infestation). It's supposed to be a fresh start for both of them and Buffy is looking forwards to putting her secret life as a vampire slayer behind her for good.

Unfortunately, Sunnydale has other plans for Buffy and rather than being able to become a normal girl with normal worries, she quickly finds that turning a blind eye isn't possible; the responsibility she feels for keeping others safe outweighs her own wants.

What this episode has got me thinking about is "fitting in". I'm sure most, if not all of us, have been through a stage in our lives when we tried to fit in with others, with varying degrees of success. Most likely this stage took place at school.

I was 16 when I became aware that within the school hierarchy, I was classed as a geek. I had a close circle of friends and to them I was cool, but as far as the popular crowd were concerned, I didn't wear the right clothes, go to the right places, drink, smoke or have a boyfriend.

Of course one of the benefits of being 34 is that I can look back now and laugh! Why did we all think of them as the popular crowd? who decided what the right clothes and hang out places were? why were you expected to drink and smoke if you wanted to be part of the cool clique? and what does "popular" really mean?

In reality they were just a bunch of girls with over-inflated egos and bad attitudes. They were happy to whisper horrible things behind mine and my friends' backs and I can see now they weren't better, or any more special, than me or anyone else in school.

At the time though, I couldn't see all of that. I felt my life would in some way be improved if I was part of the popular crowd. I can recall making several attempts to enter their group but I was only ever allowed along the peripheray and as a result I spent several weeks in a kind of limbo situation - not part of my usual friendship group and not part of the new group. That sense of loneliness was not fun.

Fortunately, I came to my senses pretty quickly and since then, I've never tried to change myself to fit in with others.

I am not perfect. I have some less than desirable qualities and I'm not entirely confident about my physical appearance BUT you know what, I have some bloody good qualities and on a good day, I look in the mirror and think yeah, I AM fit! 

You are who you are and being true to yourself is one of the greatest lessons I believe we can all learn and then impart to our children.

I ticked 2 tasks off my to do list today. I posted some letters that had been sat at the bottom of my bag for a while and I replied to an email/facebook message about Christmas from my sister. The good news is that this means the most time-sensitive tasks are done and dusted. The bad news is the rest of my to-do list will not be quite as quick to deal with. This is what's left:

  • Clean the living room blinds
  • Declutter the living room
  • Dust and tidy the mantlepiece
  • Take down the hallowe'en gel stickers on the interior window
  • Clear the dining room table
  • File away all the paperwork
  • Put locks on all the "un-safe" drawers/cupboards
  • Sort out the big box of books that's been sat in the conservatory for the last 3 years
  • Tidy and organise my craft table so if I wanted to, I could actually use it
  • Declutter the bedroom
  • Put locks on the bedside drawers
  • Make the boys some fleece trousers
  • Do some batch cooking
  • Do the Christmas shopping

And the biggest one of all:

  • Declutter and clean the spare bedroom before decorating it ready for the toddler to move into after his Boxing day birthday. The baby will then move into the nursery *sob*
By the way, my to-do list doesn't include any of the day-to-day tasks that I normally do!

Anyway, now you've finished reading my ramblings, head on over here to hear how "welcome to the hellmouth" has got nyssapod thinking. Nyssapod is also known as @minibreakmummy on twitter and her written blog is here.

When you've done that, pop on over to Chapters of Claire and congratulate her on sorting out Nathaniel's keepsake box and making a start on Amelia's keepsake box.

Join in!

If you want to join in the 12 days of Buffy challenge then details of how to do this can be found on my previous post Becoming : Part 2. You don't have to be a fan of Buffy - you just have to have a desire to get rid of some of those jobs you've been putting off for a while. It's about clearing the decks and paving the way for your own fresh start.

See you tomorrow x


Unknown said...

Just to say I'm really enjoying watching old episodes of Buffy, and I enjoyed reading your thoughts on 'Welcome to the Hellmouth'.
Ruth (also known as @nyssapod or @minibreakmummy)

bluebirdsunshine said...

I love how innocent and naive Buffy looked in the first few episodes, before she got sexed up!
Good luck with the list too, I would join you but I know I wouldn't complete the challenge, I'm a terrible procrastinator!

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