“Now leaving g”, I tap and send as I sit, still wearing my pyjamas, hair wrapped up in a towel and armpits smelling less than desirable despite showering but 30 minutes prior (that’s the problem with always wanting to be warm - your sweat glands aren’t supportive).
Okay, so I’m not ~ that ~ bad, but by now my friends know that if they receive a text which says I’m now leaving, odds are I’ll be roughly ten minutes behind that. In that ten minutes occurs a flurry of me dropping things, stubbing my toe, trying not to cry because I hate rushing, and then admitting as soon as I arrive that, yes, AGAIN I left it until the last minute to get ready.
That, or I’ll have cancelled the night before because I just wanted to cradle my knees and rock back and forth from the safety of a dark room.
Hello, I am your flaky friend. *waves*
Us flakers get a bad rap, and understandably so. It’s disappointing when you’re excited for something to happen, and then someone bails at the last moment. I get it, it’s shit. I used to have a recurring dream in which my Mum declared we were going for a family day out at a theme park (big aspirations over here), only for me to make it to the front door and be told that oops, sorry, you took too long and now we’re not going. Which is basically the same thing, right? Whenever I look forward to anything in my life, the cynic in me is already preparing herself for the inevitable let-down, with the “oh no, it’s totally fine” reaction rehearsed and ready to be delivered through gritted teeth.
And yet here I am, the inspiration behind one of Cadbury's best-sellers.
Photography: Michaela Tornaritis
Tee - Topshop
Trousers - Topshop
Trainers - Adidas
Sunglasses - Topshop (ASOS similar here)
Bag - Gucci
Even as a flaky person myself, I know how irritating it is to set aside your time for someone and not have it respected in the way you’d like. Unfortunately, as with any bad habit or vice or personality shithole - whatever you want to call it - there are real reasons as to why others find it so irritating. Keiran, for example, is untidy. He leaves stuff on the floor all the time. It drives me up the wall, and we argue about it all the time. From his point of view, okay, it’s not helpful, but it’s not a huge problem and it’s not enacted with malice, but from my point of view, I see it as him not appreciating the time and effort I put into making our home feel like a calm space. The same goes for us late-lings - we don’t mean to be uncaring or disrespectful, we’re just kind of a bit shit.
With that being said, let me explain a little as to why we’re like this (well, myself at least).
I am that stereotypical internet person who doesn’t like leaving their house. In the grand scheme of life and adventure and I’m-going-to-shag-a-random-bloke-in-the-Five-Guys-toilets, I’m really, really boring. And not faux-“relatable”-boring in the sense that I’ll say I’m having a lazy weekend, but I’ll also be out brunching and sporting an expensive loungewear set whilst having cocktails at home with my girlz, I mean IRL boring whereby I’m offended when the delivery guy knocks on my door to deliver my parcel, even though I paid £10.99 for next day delivery. IRL boring as in I went to a nightclub last Saturday for my birthday, and all I have to say about it was that it’s too loud and urm when did it get like this??? I've now graduated into my mid-twenties and I'm feeling the reluctance to ever use Snapchat with full force.
Potentially less of my reclusive behaviour has to do with being boring and more to do with no longer being eighteen and immune to responsibility, but even so, if I had to choose between a Veuve Clicquot helicopter ride over London or a hamper of cheeses to be enjoyed from the comfort of my own home, then I know which one I'd choose.
WHAT I'M WEARING
I love being at home, in my own company, existing quietly. When the sun is streaming in through the windows, there’s some chilled music playing and I’m padding around the house on my tip-toes because I want to move as gently as possible - those are my happy moments. That’s my space. I like putting one foot on Keiran as we sit next to each our at our desk, him playing games and me attempting to work but instead scrolling relentlessly through elaborate balloon displays on Instagram. I like getting to that point at around 7 or 8pm when I know that nobody will message me about work anymore, so I run a bath, take a deep breath and decompress. I’m an introvert, and I draw my personal power from those moments of nothing. I don’t even really like holidays; I find travelling so mind-numbingly boring and uncomfortable that I’d just rather not.
As a sentient, semi-intelligent, living and breathing 24 year old human being, however, I know that I can’t live as a recluse. It’s unhealthy in so many ways, and if you stay within the security of what you know, you can never expect to grow outside of that. I have to push myself, and routinely, I do. Never do I wake up in the morning and think “cor, I can’t wait to travel into London today!” - every time it’s a mental struggle, and every time I give myself a little kick up the arse for considering pulling out. But after I've achieved something that I know I could have easily bailed on, I feel proud of myself. I feel productive.
And it doesn't really have anything to do with confidence, because I could sit and have a conversation with anyone; I'm inquisitive and slightly inappropriate (I'm realising now that not everybody wants to talk about orgasms and their meditation within the first four hours of meeting one another), and even if I'm not enjoying the challenge of trying to draw blood from a stone, I know I can do it. Rather, it's a constant struggle to keep challenging myself when my gut instinct is to be comfortable, calm, and quiet at home.
So I do. I book my meeting days in London, I take conference calls when I don't really want to, I make plans when I'd rather stay at home and I try and make my weeks as full and varied as possible (without running myself into the ground, that is). Sometimes, however, I'm over-ambitious with agreeing to every coffee date that comes my way, and that's when I become Madam President Flake. Or my roots start digging down into the floor as I'm preparing to leave, and I end up fussing and making myself 20 minutes late. Challenging yourself is precisely that - a challenge - and not every time do I have the self-discipline to not allow myself to send a quick text and melt away in seclusion.
Guys: be kind to your flaky friends. We put our hands up to being disappointments, and we wear the late badge with begrudging honesty. We're not bad people though - we're just a little bit reluctant to go outside sometimes.
But if you want to order a Dominos and binge-watch Four In A Bed? Tell us the date and time, and we'll be there (albeit a few minutes on the drag...).
Until next time lovelies x