Have you ever seen anything so beautiful it physically hurt?

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What is it about human emotion that makes every action so volatile? Every movement and every beat, be it calculated or sudden, we are masters of our selves. We expel meditations, calculations, our breath rising in palpitating translations of the information both spoon fed and whispered precisely through the marrow in our bones. We are such beings that comprehension is like second nature.  Yet we neglect our own misunderstanding of the greater things; about what it means to feel, whether it’s the encompassed elation of a society or the isolated anxieties of an individual. We act like we know about the truths of our emotions, like we can master the unconquerable because of course, we as humans, have unlocked these truths-really? And these words that we reel off like tapered film? They are merely the rehearsed lines of a script you tell yourself is right, because apparently there is no need to question what we already know: there is an expectation to understand these things. Yet always, always the truth floats suspended, just out of reach.

I am water. I am air. No, I am the drop in the beat of his rising breath. I am the lines she does not speak. I am the light on the tear that threads through your eyelashes when you cry because you can’t cope with the fact you’ve succumbed to emotion. You have felt, felt something real when nothing seemed clear before and it isn’t right. It’s wrong. And at this point you question, why? Because it only seems natural for these emotions to become a part of you. But they are caustic, choking the willpower of your resistance so that you’re left naked and vulnerable, and finally you have degraded. You have become a fractured being, unsure of where to stand or what you knew. And with time, you feel as if the memories of who you were are being chipped away-hacked even-by the artist who no longer dreams.

Melancholy apparitions of emotion. Isn’t it beautiful to read of sorrows. Isn’t it beautiful to read of misfortune. There is something divine in finding humanity in a light of piteous despondency. It sits behind a simple crevice where it slithers through the blankets of words, like a fine silk. Or rather it staggers like the glutinous fibres of an egg white. Have we become that stoic we no longer appreciate the emotions of others? No. We appeal to this rawness. So what then does it say about our emotions? What then does it say about who we are and our potential? It is beauty we find in imperfection, far stronger than in the sublime.

Emotion is our evocative source of imagination that develops our character with more potency than any other experience. It is who we are and what we do. Hardly ever can we sum up emotion in one broad sense when it is defined by such subjectivity. It hurts. Not just metaphorically, but physically, yes, because it is a valuable resource and one which governs our lives and who we decide to become as people. It’s honest, real.

Next time emotion lingers at your bed, it is not a question of should you allow it in, for he is already at your side, savouring every haggard breath. Without question you must accept that the only way to live on is to drift shoulder to shoulder, as one with this entity of light and darkness. The monster, the angel, the reminder that you are human, capable of anything.

Airsoft

I’m an airsofter.

Airsoft was first introduced into the UK in the late 1900s and since then,the community has been increasingly expanding. But the truth is a lot of people have never heard of it. Before I came to uni, I never knew such a thing could exist, but it does, and oh how it has impacted my uni experience-literally-changing everything *cue dramatic music*

A lot of the time when I tell people about airsoft, the first thing I manage to get out is ‘you shoot people’, and their response? ‘So like paintball?’ Now, in the airsoft world, this is like calling Star Wars the same as Star Trek in the way that it is a ‘genuine’ issue. They might both involve shooting people but they are not the same.Of course, no one can blame you for making this comparison the first time, simply because we were all once ignorant to this distinction. But once you know, you know. I haven’t played paintball before, so I don’t have much authority in expressing the rules of the game, but as far as I’m concerned, you shoot balls of paint at people in a free-for-all fight, with enough competitive game-play to suit a universal crowd. Airsoft, on the other hand, incorporates more strategy. Using imitation firearms an airsofter is able to shoot enemies using spherical pellets, known as BBs. Unlike paintball, if you’re wearing a lot of kit it can be harder to tell if you’ve been hit. So airsoft is built on an honour system and one where you have to trust one another enough to call your hits-and god forbid if you don’t…

All in all, airsoft is an incredibly exciting sport. It’s intense for sure, but it leaves you feeling like you’ve challenged yourself: which really means something when the rest of the week has been filled with guilt-ridden procrastination. It really puts things in balance!

But why do I do airsoft? Because fun times. Despite the struggle of exercise and constant realization that you are by no means, a fit specimen, it’s just really fun. Other than being able to you to shoot the crap out of your mates, I fundamentally enjoy airsoft for its sense of immersion. It allows you to enter a different world, integrating yourself into a real zone where you can play out possibly dangerous situations, requiring skill and a level head. Like reading a book you’re able to play your own character; you are part of a team in action, and it’s incredibly liberating to have that experience.

Currently I play at an outdoor site so taking part in airsoft means preparing myself for wading through bogs and coping with crawling on hedges of thorns. The terrain is quite intense compared to playing at a CQB site (indoors) but both places are equally as good, you just have to tailor your style of play to each site.

Whether you worry about the BBs or you’re just wary of this form of combat sport, it’s important to realise that airsoft is something really enlivening and fun to take part in. So if you ever have the chance to do it, it’s definitely worth a try at the very least.