Thursday, January 19, 2012

Sugar Teeth

Yesterday I saw a little boy with one hand on a lamp post going round and round in circles around it. He had his coat sleeve pulled down over his hand to stop it hurting and he circled the post for at least 5 minutes as I watched. It looked fun but I decided it wasn't really something I could do any more for fear of looking like I was attempting to be zany.

This evening I am sitting on my sofa having eaten more chocolate eclairs than one should on a Thursday and feeling as though my teeth have slipped on their velvet pyjamas for the night. I literally can't wait to go and clean my teeth. Once my teeth are clean I'm looking forward to getting into bed and having a good night's sleep.

This morning I watched two episodes of Fireman Sam and laughed my head off at how ridiculous certain parts of it were. The dialogue was crass, the accents were dreadful and the plots were identical. It was brilliantly bad and I wondered how difficult it must be to create something for a child when you yourself can only think like an adult.

It must take a certain kind of mind to retain the uninhibited nature of a child through the strains of learning that we struggle through as young adults.

Is the mind a deeper place to disappear into as a child, meaning that swinging round a lamp post can totally absorb your person without needing to evaluate the image you're throwing out? Are you thinking less or more as a child? How much of your day is learning? When do we slowly phase that out and stick with what we know? When does time suddenly seem to be something we can be in control of rather than an entity that swims round us?

Pfft. Check me out being all questiony and philosophical. What I really want to know is, is it still ok for me to swing around a pole without seeming like a total bell end?

There is so much stuff that I love now that I hated as a child, for example:

Spaghetti bolognese
Cleaning my teeth
Being in bed
Crusts on sandwiches
The middle of Jacket Potatoes
Going for walks
Hospital dramas
Floral patterns

But it's a lot harder to think of things I used to love doing that I don't still love now. It's just that I've stopped doing them for no reason I can remember. For this reason I am going to have a day next week where I:

Get up at 6am and watch Transworld Sport with my Dad. I will sleep through much of it.
Then I'll watch Gummi Bears and The Raccoons whilst eating chocolatey cereal.
I'll play outside near a tree talking to myself quite loudly.
I'll write a poem where I meet Ronan Keating and we fall in love.
I'll have elevensies.
I'll go swimming.
I'll have lunch of peanut butter sandwiches and crisps and I won't enjoy the sandwich but I'll want an extra packet of crisps.
I'll watch an animated film.
I'll go outside and dig something up and then decide to keep it forever.
I'll be angry about having to stop playing for dinner.
I'll watch some TV shows I hate but I always watch so I can put off going to bed.
I'll go to bed having tried very hard to avoid cleaning my teeth or washing my face. I will wet the flannel and the toothbrush to make it look convincing.
I'll go to bed and read various books for at least 90 minutes, occasionally turning off the light whenever I hear footsteps on the stairs.
I'll fall asleep feeling cheated because "I am not tired".

Standard. x

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Day by Day

Something weird is happening... by body has become so efficient that, despite the fact I'm ill, my body is refusing to deal with more than one symptom at a time. This has resulted in me having a different flu like symptom every day for the past week. It's like a game of Pokemon except more fun, which is to say it fucking sucks.

I don't get ill very often... I think it's the result of having a father who is fairly unsympathetic to all forms of ailment unless something has actually fallen off your body. With my Dad, you could tell him your leg had come off and he'd ask why that mattered when you had a perfectly good other leg and two arms to carry it with in case you needed it.

He's a lovely man, but he's hardy. My father is a Scot, raised in South Africa... an interesting pedigree that leaves you defiantly stingy about your racism. It's not the cuddliest of breeds though. For that I guess you might want a small Welsh Dad or perhaps a Swiss one. Certainly, I adore mine, but it's best not to cry too often or he looks a bit panicked and turns the television up.

An example of my father's lack of patience for human frailty is a football game he once played. Dad's a keen 5-a-sider and so when he disappeared out one night to play 5 a side football we thought nothing of it.

About 9:30pm we heard quite a lot of laughter and commotion at the front door, were a little confused but when to see what was going on. We were greeted with the sight of my father, being pushed up the garden path in a wheel barrow by 3 of his friends... he seemed merry enough and we asked him what had happened.

"We were playing football and someone ran into me. I've hurt my knee a bit. It's just twisted."

"So, why are you in a wheelbarrow?"

"Er, I can't put any weight on it. I didn't move see when he ran into me so I absorbed a bit of force and it's just pushed my knee out a bit. It's just a bit tight. It'll be alright."

We thanked his friends profusely, put the wheelbarrow in the back garden and moved Dad to the sofa where he said he might have a paracetamol if the pain increased but he'd just have a sit down for while.

When it came to bed time he declared that it had stiffened slightly so he might sleep on the sofa tonight and not push it to get up the stairs. We didn't complain - no one wanted to be on the bottom end of the dead lift.

By the next morning my mother was sufficiently worried enough to have convinced him that maybe two paracetamol and a trip to the hospital might be a good idea. We were all worried when he actually agreed.

The Doctor scanned his twisted knee and came back with the following prognosis:

He has snapped his thigh bone clean in half.


Did you hear that? The man snapped his thigh bone clean in half and then came home in a wheel chair and decided not to go to hospital for about 16 hours because he assumed he had just twisted his knee.

Do you have any idea what it's like to try and explain to that man you don't really want to do something because you've got tummy ache? Unless someone has disembowelled you and there isn't even a handy carrier bag around to keep the entrails in, chances are you're going to have to get on with whatever it is he wants doing.

For this reason, I have called home to just inform them that I have the weirdest elongated cold in the world because imagine he's already had pneumonia twice today and beaten it off by looking at an apple.

Monday, January 9, 2012


Nobody warns you, when you're 6 and dreaming of your future, that when you're 25 that future will still feel just as far away.

You love your life, but there's another life just out of reach which where you'll be a proper adult. You're always waiting?

I will have a small house with lots of wooden furniture. I will have matching cutlery with a few unaccounted for teaspoons that appear to have been smuggled into the house. We will have to buy twice as many teaspoons as anything else because they always seem to disappear. The bathroom will resolutely not be blue or nautical in any way as a nod to the revolution in my head.

I'll stop alternately growing out and cutting off my hair one day when I am old enough to either not care or finally admit that I am destined for a bob. Mascara will be the one piece of make up I still wear even though no one seems to notice. I'll have a freestanding fridge.

My children will bring home Each Peach Pear Plum and I will surprise them by still knowing all the words. I'll still not make crumble as frequently as I intend to. I'll have enough plug sockets for the number of electrical items in any given room in my house. I'll buy coasters.

My front door will be red and I'll paint it myself when it gets chipped. There'll be somewhere near my house where I go when I want to feel like a Bronte character without anyone noticing and judging me. I might cry there sometimes. I will keep all the first coats of my babies.

I'll tut at American television and pretend to do the crossword while I watch it. I'll phone my mum to tell her about deals in the supermarket that she probably won't buy but it gives me something to talk to her about. My sisters will still think I'm irresponsible and a little tiresome.

I'll write letters to my brother's wife even though I don't like her and will never understand what he sees in her. She'll write back to me and we'll bitch about the way the other one is bringing up their kids. When we're drunk we'll probably get on really well.

I'll do things that I hated my parents doing... like asking, "Who's mean Alice?" when they ask "Can me and Alice go out and play?" I shall rather enjoy feigning ignorance at their frustration at my pedantry. They'll thank me one day... when they're hopeless impatient perfectionists with no grasp on shifting linguistic patterns and a stubbornly, increasingly archaic, vocabulary.

I'll have a garden that I absolutely hate to tend and is therefore full of plant corpses and pots of mud. There will be a sandpit that's continually too wet to play in and a swing that always needs cleaning. The children's jeans will never quite have clean bottoms.

I'll be on a diet even more frequently as I am now, the only thing that will increase is the frequency with which I lie to myself about how much I've actually eaten. Sometimes I'll wonder if I should have married someone who was clean shaven. I'll look at the guitar I got when I was 21 and admit to myself I never intended to learn it. I'll still hate people who play guitars at social gatherings.

I'll visit the sea more. I'll get that teary, beautiful feeling when I hear my children called my Dad, "Grandpa". I'll play with Lego when the children are in bed and then swear blind it wasn't me when they're confused about the architecture in the morning. I'll keep a photo of James Gandolfini in my wallet. I'll know how to make spaghetti bolognese from scratch. I'll make my children finish all the dinner on their plates but tell their guests that they needn't when they visit.

I will still cry at Gordon Lightfoot but I still won't know why. The smell of Givenchy III will still remind me of endless games of Backgammon with my Grandma and I'll still wish I liked Amber jewellery so I could think more kindly on her taste.

I'll have a freestanding mixer for my baking and I'll have cooked at least one successful Christmas dinner for my clan. I will still be buying my brother ridiculous calendars for Christmas. I'll have my own Denby crockery and a really heavy frying pan that my husband has to lift for me when it's really full up. When my son is old enough he'll feel weird that I'm too weak to do it.

I'll still be excited about my future.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Under Where?

Today I attempted to do something I don't often do... I tried to go lingerie shopping. I felt quite out of place the second I stepped through the door and decided I vastly preferred the flannel pyjamas to the leopard print basque. However, I was on a mission to try something new and thought I would plough on with the expedition...

I swallowed my usual nervousness towards putting myself out there and admitting to trying to be sexy and started gathering teddies and basques and bras and various lace contraptions.

With 5 enticing garments in each hand I thought I ought to hit the changing room... it was going to be exciting, it was going to be like some kind of excellent parade of fleshy bits resulting in the most perfect "outfit" (?) and self esteem bursting out of the seams. Hurrah!

I tried on the first one... it was interesting in that I hated it as soon as it was on me. It was far too long and not really designed for us curvacious ladies. Never mind, thought I, next one...

I tried the next one on but unfortunately it had a contraption on the front that was designed to choke you on your own mammaries. Within the first 7 seconds I had one boob lodged under my chin like an adam's apple in a serious allergic reaction, the other one was nuzzling my ear and looking slightly preposterous surrounded with fluff and bits of material that I could only imagine would be quite difficult to get past should your suitor be attracted to the idea of boobs strapped around your head. This one wasn't going to work either.

The next in the line made me look like some kind of child trying to be a princess and just looking very wrong and weird in the process. Horrific.

Now, I was all ready to give up at this point... having had several clasps stuck in my hair in the changing process and almost at the point where I couldn't even remember where boobs were supposed to go, I thought I ought to maybe just admit that any future men of mine are going to have to make do with a vest and a vague brushing of the hair before bed.


...but, then I found one of the most miraculous things I have ever found in my life. A dimmer switch in the changing room. Utter genius. The result of an absolute angelic piece of thought... "No woman in her right mind is going to think she actually looks good enough in this stuff to pay these prices... so let's let her see herself in the dark so that it doesn't matter anyway! That way she'll be thrilled about parting with her pay cheque for something she doesn't want to be seen in."

Absolutely incredible marketing device.

I left empty handed and decided instead to pay my rent this month instead of buying pants. It seemed logical to me to just hang on to my original flannels and hope that my future men are content with being allowed to touch a real woman and not be diappointed at the lack of armour keeping various body parts in place.

The shop I was in was La Senza which is obviously on its way down the toilet at the moment - I think it's an interesting industry to be in. I think I believe men couldn't really give a toss about underwear generally speaking, so it's really a shop designed to sell women things they want to wear because they think men want them to... so you need a product that looks like it will appeal to a man so that it will appeal to a woman. Difficult. I think they peaked with the dimmer switch personally.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Two Steps Back?

Have you ever had one of those weeks where you sit down and try and review the week and realise it's only Wednesday... and you briefly consider hibernating for the next two days? I'm having one of those weeks.

I've just spent an hour unpacking from my trip home and tidying my room, only to remember that I'm leaving tomorrow to go away until Sunday night and so it was completely pointless. I'd staple my moron badge to my forehead except that I've lost it because I'm a moron. I'm going to blame the tiredness I think.

I feel a little bit like I've taken two steps back in my Life Progress this week - if I had one of those church fundraising thermometers in my front garden then I'd have to paint back over some of the red bit with some white to take it back down. Hopefully it wouldn't go a strange pink colour and confuse people - nobody likes the Savlon on a bloody wound look. Seafood gash sauce is nobody's cup of tea.

Why have I taken two steps back? Two reasons (one reason per step see? Logical), two very good reasons:

1. I have had to take on a part time job to support earnings.
2. I had a panic attack at the weekend.

Now, as a general rule I'm not keen on being miserable about stuff, but, it occurred to me at the weekend that the reason panic attacks suck monkey bollocks is you feel like a proper tosser for having one because they are often irrational or hard to explain. So, I thought if I'm not willing to talk about it and admit I have them and they're no problem, then who is going to?

So. It wasn't fun - I breathed like a shagging hamster for quarter of an hour, I ruined a pillow case with mascara and snot, I screeched like a banshee at various family members who tried to comfort and then I subjected my brother to 2 hours of television with a slightly fragile older sister who was being overly jocular so that he didn't feel awkward. It made it more awkward.


Oh who even frigging knows? As I understand it, panic attacks are quite different for all people. For me, I get a bit quiet and feel not quite right for a while and then something will make it flip - either someone being nice or something in my surroundings changing very suddenly - and I just want the ground to swallow me up so I can dribble and panic away in the dark somewhere.

The best thing about being a bit older and less patient with myself is that I know how to deal with this better. I know how to settle myself. I know how to be slightly better at this side of myself, but it's still not ideal. Sets my week out of whack.

And the new job? Obviously this feels like a step back in terms of how well the career is going... but it's only to be expected I suppose. January and February are quiet months for comedy and I'm not exactly the shiniest star in the comedy sky so I guess it's cool to need a bit of extra income. Isn't it? Yes. If you disagree then feel free to pass my details on to anyone who'd like to pay me to tell jokes.

There we go. I don't really like to be a downer but sometimes I think it's worth it so that everyone knows that things are a bit pants for everyone sometimes. I mean, not often for me because I'm so cool and successful. But I'm mortal. Kind of. But being mortal is easy when your boobs are as awesome as mine.

Night all x