Urban Society Round Up #2

Well, this has been a mental two weeks. I think the phrase ‘thrown in the deep end’ has never applied quite so literally to my life (apart from the time I was actually thrown in the deep end of the community pool, but whatever. I forgave my brother.) One week after starting this new job, I found out my Managing Editor was away on annual leave for a week. Cue panic attacks, stress, and a general feeling of ‘holy-hell-I’m-not-cut-out-for-this’. But, you know, I survived. And it gets easier. And I got to write some things along the way!

I got a little political over the last two weeks. You may have head that Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has decided to no longer allow any refugees arriving by boat into Australia, but rather to deport them to Papua New Guinea. (If you’re Australian, take that with a heavy dose of irony. If you’re not, welcome to the xenophobic swing of Australian politics.) I – like many Australians – think this is an all round disgusting and simplistic measure, and so I quite enjoyed writing about a refugee who tried to pay back the government $18,000. Note: he originally sought – and was granted – political asylum in Greece, before coming to Australia legally. On the other side of the world, UK Prime Minister David Cameron seeks to ban porn on the internet. To put it less simplistically, he wants to implement an ‘opt-out’ family-friendly filter, as well as crack down on child porn, extremely violent porn and simulated rape. His heart’s in the right place, but is this really the best method? Plus, as one 21-year-old UK commenter pointed out, young people everywhere have to embarrassingly ask their parents to turn on the porn. Awkies.

bans porn

Then we get to the shock value posts (because it’s all about the clicks, people). I came in early especially to write about Rolling Stone putting the Boston Bomber on the front cover, because a) I was so fired up about it, and b) I wanted to do the thing properly. For a uni assignment I researched the general media-wide cock-up that was the Boston Bombings, so I a bit of what I was talking about (and I like to talk smart sometimes). Then there was the barrel-of-laughs wedding that ended in a family-wide brawl, that caused more than one commenter to reference ‘My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding’.  And here is a video (and accompanying words, but mostly the video) of why it is very important not to do things like stick your head in a crocodile’s mouth. Sadly, I also wrote about a baby that was stabbed 90 times by his mother (warning: graphic images). As awful as this was, I wanted to talk about mental illness and post-natal depression, because a mentally sane person simply does not stab their baby. I knew this would attract comments such as “don’t stigmatise mental illness like that” (which it did), but I also thought that for every outraged person, there would be a mother nodding along thinking of the times they’d wanted to throw their baby out the window because it didn’t stop crying.

And so we get to the uplifting part of this tale! Here, watch Zach Braff help a man propose to his girlfriend, or read about the social media that only allows images of happy things, whether great or small.

Of course, there’s a bit of celebrity gossip along the way. Every morning we do a post called ‘Hot Mess Threesome’, which is some kind of celebrity scandal, gossip, or just plain funny news. It’s good practise in ‘how to be a funny writer’, which isn’t one of my strong suits. What do you think of these little ditties?

  • Hugh Jackman ‘admits’ to wearing Wolverine suit in the bedroom [link]
  • Michelle Bridges and the Commando split up [link]
  • Kochy tries to skateboard and breaks his co-host’s ankle [link]
  • A reporter draws a massive penis on live TV [link]
  • Kim Kardashian and Kanye West spend almost a mill on gold-plated toilets [link]
  • Kelly Rowland became an actual ‘survivor’ and had to get rescued while at sea [link]
  • The View come to the defence of butt sex [link]

And, of course, we wrote about the Royal Baby. I still can’t believe they went with George.

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Urban Society Roundup #1

So here’s a bit of news: I’m the new Deputy Editor at Urban Society! Or, as my email signatures reads, a ‘Well-Worded Woman’.

No longer an intern, I actually get to manage our interns. I want to say to them “I’ve been where you are! It gets better!” but for now will keep my mouth shut (unless of course they stumble onto this blog.) I feel frantic enough in my new role without worrying that hungry vulture-like interns are circling my job, waiting for a sign of weakness.

The best part is that I get to write something every day. It may not be the most thought-provoking piece you’ve ever read, but it’s fun. I’m officially paid to write. I saw the money go into my bank account on Friday and felt giddy with all the dollars.

I also spend my days doing a lot of things that are not writing: editing everybody else’s posts (which, if they’re an inexperienced writer, can take a long long time), sourcing content, scheduling posts, uploading everything to Facebook and liaising with what seems to be half the PR people in Sydney. I’d happily be content sitting in a little bubble for eight hours writing whatever I felt like, but that doesn’t pay the bills unless you are J. K. Rowling a total genius.

The point isn’t that I’m a struggling twenty-something wannabe creative. The point is THAT I’M GETTING PAID. MY PARENTS NO LONGER DISPAIR. I CAN AFFORD TO FILL UP THE CAR WHEN I BORROW IT.

I bought two (two!) ridiculously overpriced cocktails on Saturday, just because I could. And a kebab later in the evening, but that was mostly because I shouldn’t.

I’ve decided to do a weekly roundup where I post up the bits and bobs I’ve written for Urban Society, in case you feel like a looksie. For those who don’t know (and if you don’t live in Sydney, I’ll wager that you don’t know), Urban Society is a young person’s website with pop-culture, local eateries, a what’s on of Sydney, a little bit of travel, and the occassional news piece. It’s a little bit of everything, all rolled into one. (I’M A BITCH, I’M A LOVER… yeah.)

So here we go:

1 Forever Alone

Urban Society Roundup #1

World’s First Forever Alone Restaurant – This actually looks pretty good. (Check out the image above.)

Patient opens her eyes moments before organ donation – Chilling.

Rebecca Black covers Miley Cyrus’ ‘We Can’t Stop’ – Woah, Rebecca Black can actually sing now?

Daft Punk releases ‘Get Lucky’ condoms – Too. Many. Puns.

Are we taking Instagram selfies too far? – This was actually a hard one to write. It was in response to a Sydney Morning Herald article by a 17-year-old girl, who I thought wrote brilliantly. Everything she said was true and perfectly articulated, yet quite possibly not realised by SMH’s core audience. If I had written the article for me, it would have been called “Every 17 year old girl should look up to this one because she’s got her head straight and is wise beyond her years.” But you have to present a fair and accurate viewpoint, after all.

Gay marriage ad under fire for ‘sexualisation of children’ – I would have called this one ‘Fuck yeah, Queensland’.

Daft punk