ZELLA COMPTON: Men – educate yourselves about what feminism really is. Stop being so frightened.

Zella believes there is too much pressure on women to look the 'right way'                   Shutterstock
Zella believes there is too much pressure on women to look the 'right way' Shutterstock
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Right about the time you’re reading this, I will hopefully be in the Houses of Parliament.

Fantastically my play, How to be a Girl, which I wrote a few years ago, has been invited to show for the second time to a selection of peers, MPs and staff across the Department of Education, and the Government Equalities Office.

It’s a hugely important show, about the pressure which the media places on young women to present themselves in a certain way, the expectations which are heaped on them to wear the right thing, look the right way all the while letting girls know, with a silvery saccharine smile, that they must be themselves.

As if.

With all the advertising which is pummelled into our young women’s’ heads it’s sometimes rather difficult to separate real life from celebrity-wannabe culture.

You might have noticed that I get worked up about these things.

It’s no secret that I am a feminist, and believe that if you have a mother, daughter, sister, female relative or are, indeed, a woman, you should be a feminist too.

It’s about equality, that’s all. And all those who grimace and wring their hands about hairy legs (excuse me, take a look at your own), and male beating should really, really take the time to educate themselves about what feminism is, and why it’s so important, day after day after day.

Stop being so frightened.

If you don’t believe the media’s portrayal of women is crappy, take a look at the latest fear which is being stoked about women’s bodies. Yes, the other week we had the advent of the vagina armpit, whereby you shouldn’t be showing your armpits if they’re a bit baggy and the skin looks like it could be labia.

I kid you not.

Instead of laughing about it men, think about what that’d be like if, say, you were suddenly classed as ‘less-than’ because your ears weren’t a regular 4cm in height, and you were vilified for it.

It’s that arbitrary.

How to be a Girl addresses these issues and more, but can’t offer solutions as that’s up to each and every one of us.

It’s up to us to ask what we are giving women this Christmas, and making sure it’s more than presents about appearance.

Suggestions include tickets for the theatre or a gig, experience events, a trip to the Isle of Wight for lunch.

Fun, alive things that don’t revolve around a mirror.


My unofficial start to the Christmas season is, as ever, with the local church’s Christmas Tree Festival. I love the way that the community comes together to witness and decorate the many small tress with a flavour of what their group does – glasses for the opticians, hedgehogs for the wildlife.

The weekend was accompanied by a variety of musical acts, including the Stokes Bay Strummers who are a ukulele band that raise money for charity with their gigs.

They’ve been around for six or so years and never cease to raise a smile with their playful interpretations of tunes.

There’s something so wonderful about music bringing people together to chase off the bah humbugs.


‘Tis the season to try odd flavoured foods, but let me save you the worry of trying turkey-flavoured Pringles.

I can say, without a shadow of a doubt, that they are pretty disgusting. That’s a lie, not pretty, very.

In fact I would go as far as to say they are the worse crisps ever. Even viler than the Doritos Roulette hot chilli, which was a burn-and-a-half, or even Walkers Bugles crisps which are cones of evil.

My prediction for 2018 is that these crisps will be stacked high on offer for 50p a pop, and then be given away as an added extra, and even thrown at marauders in shops.

Yes, they’re that bad. Save your turkey tasting for the real thing.