On Friday morning I called work and told them that I had a sticky throat and that it hurt to talk. They gave me the day off and sent me something to do from home, which I duly did, after about an hour and a half of crying. Loud, racking sobs, squeezing a pillow to my chest, soaking the bedsheets below and occasionally swearing under my breath. It may have hurt to talk, but that's nothing, compared to how much it hurt emotionally.
I have always thought of the European Union as a positive thing, ever since I was a very young child. I was (and still am) fascinated by the concept of countries working together in a centralised system, even when in primary school, and was pretty much the only one in my A-Level Politics class who said joining the Euro was a good idea. My mother, who was around the first time the UK had an in/out referendum, admitted she was worried, but was confident that Remain would clinch this one. I, too, was confident of this - it would be narrow, but I credited the British public with the necessary intelligence to realise that freedom of movement, right of appeal, human rights protection, trade laws and millions of jobs were all pretty good ideas.
It's not the first time I've trusted people too much.
The say before the referendum, I posted some tweets about how the EU has affected the sex blogger community as a whole. While I am aware that there are many American sex bloggers, the European contingency is tight. Rose, Rebel, Abbi and Jillian are all bloggers who were able to travel here, no questions asked, to attend Eroticon and other gatherings. Jillian, of course, moved here from Belgium to seek work (which she found) and love (which she found) and a home (...buh?). She didn't get a visa, unlike DomSigns or Bunny (who would both probably tell you that it's a very difficult, and time-consuming, task. My hairy friend did the reverse, migrating to the USA to get married, and it took years.), but because of her EU citizenship, she didn't need one.
An EU passport. There are Syrian refugees drowning in the Mediterranean who would kill for one of those. To throw ours away because of some misguided, racist, patrioric, neoliberal jingoisms and falsified promises to protect our NHS and benefit services (which are both part-funded by the EU) is an insult to those people on the boats.
From a purely selfish perspective (to say nothing of the fact that I have a girlfriend from the European mainland!), the day job I do (and have been doing since 2011, on and off) is almost entirely dependent upon the EU for clients. Without the EU, I may not have had a job to call in sick to on Friday. I'm happy to say that my job is confirmed for at least one more year (phew!), but that doesn't mean that my entire future career would be in jeopardy. It's not just proles like me, either: my uncle, who works for a big auditing accounting company in London and is on a six-figure salary, is fearing for his job. In his words, we're "fucked".
The EU flag hangs in my office because we are partially funded by them as a small business. Basically, the EU pays my salary.
After months of campaigning, convincing all my family and friends to vote Remain, spending my lunch hour on Thursday walking up and down the high street handing out flyers and hanging a Remain poster in my room at work even though my boss told me not to, it's quite understandable, I think, that I spent most of Friday morning crying. I even tried to masturbate, but the sweet release of orgasm was difficult to achieve, and I had to resort to watching hardcore lesbian strap-on fucking to get me off.
Which reminds me - how does this affect the porn industry?
It's very difficult to think of a bright side to this (David Cameron resigning doesn't count). For what it's worth, though, I've heard in several places that it will take us two years to properly "Brexit". Much as I'd prefer us not to at all, at least we have that intervening time to regroup, campaign for social justice, and continue to enjoy the benefits the EU affords us. If we love the EU as much as we can, while we still can, then we will have shown Europe how special it is by the time "Brexit" is completed.
Certainly not in my name. I'm a European. I always have been and I always will be.