And if you are, you might be questioning my spelling

Photo by Ekaterina Shakharova on Unsplash

Growing up, the word cwtsh was all around me. It was something I did everyday with my Mam, my grandparents, even with the occasional cousin (when we weren’t squabbling). It was probably one of my first words.

It means hug, but anyone who uses it will probably agree that it somehow means more than that. There’s love and kindness involved — I wouldn’t use cwtsh for what I might offer a colleague on their birthday, or the awkward exchange when I’m introduced to a friend of a friend at a bar. You have to squeeze some real affection into it.

Is it still possible to justify the TV Licence?

Featured image from here

The concept is sound: a media network guaranteed to give you accurate and impartial information about the world around you. Of course, nothing could ever be truly impartial — we all bring our own histories and biases to the table when recollecting any series of events. But the BBC, so the story goes, always strives to do its best to come close to that ideal. Who wouldn’t want that? Personally, I’ve long agreed that we need a publicly accountable infrastructure to ensure we don’t end up like the US — dominated by the likes of Murdoch’s Fox News.

The British…

A brief Welsh history lesson by the Manic Street Preachers

Image by Author

1404: the year Owain Glyndŵr called his first Parliament representing the whole of Wales at Machynlleth, where he was crowned as the country’s last prince. At school I learned the moon landing happened in 1969, six years after the assassination of JFK, that Krakatoa erupted in 1883, and we all know what happened in 1066 (even if we might not be able to find Hastings on a map). But 1404 meant nothing to me.

The year is also the title to a lesser-known Manic Street Preachers song. It popped up on my playlist today after I’d been reading about another…

(Sort of)

Image by author

The Three Feathers emblem, long synonymous with Welsh Rugby, has come under some heavy criticism from some of my fellow Indy supporters recently. In fact, there’s even a petition to have it dropped from the shirt altogether. So my opinion on the subject could well be an unpopular one, but hear me out.

I get the issue with The Three Feathers. For a start they’re ostrich feathers, which I’m fairly sure isn’t a bird native to Wales. But the emblem is regarded by many as a symbol of oppression, and with good reason. As the crown at its centre would…

All the evidence points to giving readers what they want.

Rule number 1, for many, is a seductive photo (by Andre Sebastian on Unsplash)

I’m sure this isn’t the first time you’ve stumbled across an article about making money on Medium. They seem to be everywhere — even if you’re new to the platform you’ve probably read a few.

When I first joined Medium I wanted an outlet for my writing, and to discover brilliant writers I could learn from by immersing myself in their worlds. Initially I didn’t know about the Partner Program, but thought, why not? If I’m on here, and people read my stuff, I wouldn’t say no to some loose change.

Then I noticed an article or two claiming that…

When the seemingly simple is anything but.

A young woman posing among blades of — I’m no longer sure what to call it. Photo by jonathan wilson rosas peña on Unsplash

Learning another language is an admirable goal, one that deep down most people share. But most of us make our way through adulthood doing little about it. For many, the reason is that it’s unlike many other forms of learning.

In addition to time and effort, it also requires a new way of thinking. I’m Welsh. I’ve written previously about my relationship with the Welsh language, and the obstacles I’ve faced learning it. But while each language has its own specific challenges, and we all learn in different ways, there are common themes that arise when learning any language.


To what end?

A campaign poster for Yes Cymru

Yes Cymru, the grassroots organisation campaigning for Welsh independence, has had a good couple of weeks. In fact, they’ve had an exceptional couple of weeks. Having started this year with little more than two thousand members, they were up to 6,000 by the time I joined in August. On Sunday evening they hit their 10,000 target, and by Tuesday their numbers had already passed 13,000. To put this in context, if spread proportionately across the UK it would almost equate to the memberships of the Conservative and Liberal Democrat parties combined.

The problem is, the reason for this surge is…

Some thoughts on the Labour leadership

Labour leader Keir Stamer, taken from here

Jeremy Corbyn, Labour leader until the beginning of this year, has been suspended from the party following comments made regarding a report by the Equalities and Human Rights Commission.

This piece isn’t about his suspension in particular, but about the direction of left within the Labour party, and the UK more generally. However this is a relevant and significant issue. The argument is ostensibly between those who believe Labour has a problem with anti-Semitism, and those who claim any problem has been exaggerated for political gain. …

Music, lockdown, and contemplating the meaning of life

Manic Street Preachers front man James Dean Bradfield, taken from here

People Give In.

The title to the 2018 Manic Street Preachers release sometimes feels like it could have been written as a prophetic anthem for 2020. The pandemic has made all sorts of existing problems worse, while isolating us from loved ones and company more generally. Many of us have been left to wallow at a low ebb and sometimes it’s hard not to imagine the whole world feeling the same way.

During the lockdown, or what we’ll soon likely be referring to as the first lockdown, I found comfort in music more than usual. Almost all genres of entertainment…

Or are their blunders a fair gauge of their fitness for office?

Priti Patel — not great with numbers. Image from here

The Tories have left themselves open to ridicule once again. This time Jonathan Van-Tam, the expert wheeled out during their daily Downing Street briefings, claimed that they’d announced quarantines for people returning from Wuhan back on February 30th. That’s the thirtieth. Of February.

Hilarious, right? And further evidence of Tory incompetency to add to the pile stacked so high by the likes of Priti Patel. For many of us on the left, this is the conclusion it’s so tempting to draw. …

Y. Chwyldro

Politically Left, parent, Welsh. Writes about any combination of the three, and occasionally other subjects entirely.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store