Hello, I'm Matt! If you want to learn about me in 10 seconds, read the now section. If you'd like to get in touch, you can see how in the contact section. The rest is all details.
This is in response to the now page movement. Right now:
- I live in Newcastle upon Tyne and use my remote working privileges to travel/work once or twice a year.
- I am a worker-owner of Open Data Services Co-operative. I have worked there since 2018-10-08, and was made a member and director on 2019-04-08. I work five days a week, remotely. I physically work from a co-working space in Newcastle called Goodspace. It's a wonderful space and I heartily recommend popping in if you're ever in town.
- I am also finishing off my Phd Thesis looking at Digital Technologies, Charities, and Accountability. I work on this on the weekends.
- I am a trustee of The Patchwork Project; a small youth work charity in the west end of Newcastle whom I worked alongside during my PhD.
- I am a member of the Communist Party of Britain; I sit on the Branch Committee for the Newcastle and Gateshead branch of the Northern District and take an active role in branch meetings and education classes.
A person's philosophy drives how they approach things and interact with others. As such you can sum up my philosophy as being heavily influenced by the following (listed alphabetically rather than in order of prevalence as that is impossible tell):
- Communism, especially Marxism-Leninism. Basically, I think the planet and human rights are pretty neat and that Communist-Utopia is possible through organisation and hard work.
- Feminism, especially Marxist-Feminists such as Silvia Federici but although I have a Marxy critique of Identity Politics, I support some of the goals of Intersectionality and am staunchly Pro-Trans rights and Pro-Sex Worker rights.
- Minimalism, especially when presented as thinking about the most "simple" or "straightforward" way of accomplishing tasks and reducing clutter. The design of this site was influenced by my minimalist tendencies. I use it as a tool to evaluate how my own desires have been hijacked by consumer capitalism, and quieten my brain which can get distracted very easily.
- Satanism, although not LaVeyan Satanism as they're a bunch of fascist nutters. Not The Satanic Temple either. I resonate with Satanic imagery and its use in challenging power structures. Capitalism and Patriarchy are the dominant and oppressive power structures and a lot of religious organisations have been used to reproduce this oppression. Satanism gives us an evocative set of symbols to challenge this. This does not mean I'm anti religion and anti-Christian except where particular hegemonic values are fore-fronted.
- Stoicism, as described in this book. Stoicism and Minimalism go hand-in-hand in driving what most would call my self-care, and small-scale mundane interactions. Stoicism offers me a practical set of tools to maintain good mental health and tranquility during class struggle.
I try to maintain a simple and sustainable diet. Although I'm sometimes a bit naughty. Broadly, I would describe myself as practicing pescetarian diet as I exclude meat 99% of the time. This is for ethical/sustainability reasons, as well as for bodily health. I've also been diagnosed with Coeliac Disease, meaning I react pretty nastily to things containing gluten. I therefore don't feature bread prominently and since gluten-free bread products are super expensive I tend to just eat more vegetables. My main sources of carbohydrates are rice, and starchy vegetables. I'm still naughty and have bread occasionally, but I treat it the same way as drinking alcohol or smoking. I usually budget for having one planned and one unplanned gluten intake per week. I've been limiting sugar for some time now but recently developed a weekend snacking habit that sometimes involves cheesecakes.
My favourite foods shift around a bit but at the moment I look forward to eating:
- Spicy Noodle Soup
- Salad with spinach, fish, tomatoes, and pickled beetroot. This is my current standard workday lunch.
- Sushi with salmon and tuna
- Chickpea curry.
- Anything pickled. I often make my own pickled red cabbage or pickled cucumbers.
- Anything with beetroot in it.
- Pizza. I sometimes am good and make gluten-free pizza dough. Most of the time I'm not.
Current Everyday Carry (/using)
- Palestinian Keffiyeh.
- Camping cutlery set.
- Steel Lunchbox. The seal is bust so I wrap it in a canvas bag to absorb leaks.
- Backpack, an old french army bag I've had for over 13 years. I don't know the model but it looks like this only much more beaten up.
- Front door and bike keys. Carried on a black paracord lanyard I made myself, along with a small victorinox tool.
- If it's rain-season I carry a pack-down waterproof jacket and trousers.
- Thin metal wallet. I think they're trendy atm, which is neat. I like it because it doesn't have a large profile in my pocket.
- Bluetooth headphones. Noise cancelling with a built-in mic for work.
- Lemome Notebook. It's dot paper because that's flexible. I don't bullet-journal. I write in it with a Lamy Safari fountain pen which I use with a converter with bottled ink to try and reduce waste. I use a blue-black ink.
- OnePlus 5 Android Smartphone. It's neat, has a decent camera for a non-camera person and I run it with LineageOS without the Google Services Framework installed on it.
- An Enigma VIII laptop. I like to think of it as my knock-off Macbook Air. I run Xubuntu on it.
Trivia and Hobbies
I'm in a period of recovery at the moment after a particularly brutal 2018. As it stands I'm not as active as I usually am while I get better.
- I really enjoy strength training, particularly bodyweight strength. My preferred system is a variation of Convict Conditioning, and I like to train first thing in the morning because I'm usually exhausted the evenings from work and I want to ensure that I still train.
- I love tea, particularly loose-leaf tea. I store three jars of loose tea at home, which I sometimes combine with spices.
- I love the sea and am very slowly doing up my boat, The Morning Star, ready for living aboard.
- Sometimes I climb mountains.
- I'm trying to reduce my waste little by little. I am skeptical of Zero Waste as presented because it lacks a Class Analysis and often focuses on individual achievement rather than the core reason we have so much plastic in the first place -- capitalism.
Inspired by @rhiaro. Here's how you may get in touch with me should you feel the need.
||Will I see it?
||Will I reply?
|Phone call and SMS
||I store my phone at home in a box unless I need it for 2-factor auth or for travel. Expect long replies for SMS. All unknown numbers are routed to voicemail automatically, so leave a message.
||If I know you, yes. Otherwise definitely not.
||I use both Signal and Telegram. I am aware of the multiple problems with each, but this is the best we've got. Signal is on my phone and laptop but Telegram is only on my laptop. I will mostly see messages on my laptop when it's open (office hours + weekends, mostly). If you don't know me already please contact me via Telegram rather than Signal. I do not and will never use Whatsapp.
||I have two email addresses. If you know me use the one you usually do. If not,
email@example.com. I prioritise encrypted mail, and don't have notifications on my phone.
||If you know me, yes. If you don't then probably yes.
||I output to my Mastodon and Twitter accounts. I do not log in or otherwise check them. I do not have Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, or LinkedIn accounts