Tuesday, May 31, 2011

My First Rule of Thumb...

I am living and breathing Bugsy Malone at the moment. For the last 4 days I've been wandering around singing to myself and accidentally accosting people oon the street to ask if they have ever considered being a boxer. It's not an ideal situation... not many people are that keen on being boxers if they haven't already started and so they're just giving me odd looks and asking if I'm ok.

Personally, I would not like to be a boxer. But, I have decided that I would like to remake an awful lot of films with children and see what it does to the story line. I would dearly like to see Inception remade with the sort of dreams that children have instead of all those guns and spinning tops... far too creepy and deathy for my liking. What we need is a few narwhals turning spontaneously into unicorns before vomiting sour sweeties onto the floor. Much better!

I think Bugsy Malone is a cracking film... I've never seen the live version... and it seems to be one that I can't imagine being remade. There are too many really cool performances that sort of make the film/character to the point where you can't really see them being played by anyone else. Jodie Foster as Tallulah is a little piece of brilliance shoe horned into an awful lot of eyeliner and a slinky dress.

My desire to cram kids into plotlines is far from unique though... obviously the marketing execs got on to it with the toilet roll and the sweetie adverts. Personally, I am absolutely terrified of the little girl in the haribo advert - she is not nearly as cool as Fat Sam - but the concept is there... perhaps the world would be a much jollier place if we occasionally gave high powered jobs to small people so that we can laugh at them trying to be taken seriously. It oculd only be classed as child cruelty if we admitted that we all hate our jobs and considered the idea of giving them to a younger version of ourselves mean.

Perhaps we could just throw the concept of Thursday in the bin and make it "A Child Has Your Job Now" day...? And then on Thursdays all the pressure will go while we watch 2 foot people in suits filing pieces of paper and getting so stressed they need a cigarette. Magical! It would give us all something really great to talk about on Fridays, and children would learn to appreciate their childhoods a lot more because they've had a brief snapshot of what adulthood would be like.

Foolproof. Thank you Bugsy!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Shut Up Bowie

I don't like change. Transitional periods make me incredibly angsty and irritating to be around. Decision making is not something that comes easily to me. In fact, I find making decisions incredibly hard and likely to make me stroppy.

I would like it if decisions could be made in factories - so that you could buy the correct decision for any occasion. People would be trained to weigh up situations very quickly and accurately and then just pummel you into the right pathway. I think people may have gone a little way down this road, hence we ended up with the Magic Eight Ball, but I think there's still work to be done before the system is perfect.

It's not that I want someone else to blame if it goes wrong, because weirdly I don't think people often do make irreconcilably wrong choices in life... everything seems to work out in the end. I just don't like the sensation of making the decision in the first place. There are too many options to consider and as soon as you've decided that it's change you need, you forget all the things you didn't like about the current situation.

Morons will then start popping out of the woodwork to tell you "It's all psychological"... yes, thank you genius. Technically my decision was also psychological too... because my brain made it. Why on earth would you curse a species with a brain capable of first making a decision of their own free will and then give them the capacity to doubt that decision right up until the day they die? It's a very tricky position to be in.

This week I've got the angsty nerves of someone who has given up their job with no safety net in order to give full attention to a dream. I'm proud of myself. But I am terrified in equal measures. The difficulty is, if I stay in the day job, I'm admitting that I'm too scared to ever do it... and then I may as well not be doing all the half sacrifices like producing annoying puns every five seconds and living far away from everyone else I'm related to. So it needs to be done... and it will be done. But not before my ever active stomach acid has given me some kind of ulcer. Now is not a good time to get an ulcer seeing as I'm about to stop paying good levels of National Insurance. If someone could have a word with my bodily functions I would greatly appreciate it.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Day 3 - Ever Fed Hummus to a Fish... Charlie has.

...and then it was over. Truth be told I feel like a balloon that's spent the last two days wheezing wildly around the big top and is now lying sadly in the corner leaking dribble out of the spouty bit.

This weekend has genuinely been amazing - absolutely awesome. One of the biggest highlights was watching the next generation of us starting to become real little people. There were a motley crew of next generationers at the party this weekend -

Lily and Dylan - Little Londoners with a penchant for guitars and hide and seek. Two excellent specimens of children... both blonde haired and blue eyed with the sort of cackles that make you confused as to whether to hug them or start looking for painty finger prints on your back. We had a pretty epic game of hide and seek which resulted in me scaring the bejeebers out of my aunt when she failed to notice me sitting underneath the shoe hamper until I said hello. Unfortunately, Lily and Dylan were much more eagle eyed and I reached new levels of exhaustion trying to find new places to stow my behind.

Oliver-James - the apple of my eye who you hear about more often than is healthy. What a cherub he was today. Hid favourite game was to find a ball and then go and accost the boyfriend of one of the cousins, so that he could be lifted up high enough to slam dunk in the basketball hoop. He was a bit of a pro (with the help of a certain Antipodean beau) and was merrily lavished with attention much to his delight.

Isabelle - the youngest of the new generation. At only 7 months old, this delight weighed in as the "Most Likely To Remain a Cheeky Monster" for the rest of forever. She is like a human danger beacon... I've never quite seen a small human have such a nose for something sharp and or totally solid. She has the most beautiful big brown eyes and an extraordinarily expressive face. Some babies look like babies - not this one. She looks like a cheeky mini-person already. I am pretty freaking excited to see the chaos this one will cause in later years.

Charlie - where to start with Charlie? Charlie made it his mission this weekend to put as many things into the fish pond as humanly possible. Literally. If Charlie could lift it, and it didn't look like it was entirely meant to be wet, Charlie found a way to launch it pondward... I lost my shit the moment I heard someone say Charlie had been put in a time out... "What for?" someone said, "He just threw the hummus tub into the fish pond." I love the logic involved in this decision.... "Say, those fish look hungry... I like hummus... I bet they'll like hummus...SPLASH." Unless the decision went slightly more the other way, ie "Gee, this hummus looks a bit dry... SPLASH." Either way - brilliant.

It was pretty cool seeing my Grandfather there too - surveying the mess he'd made by meeting my Grandmother and having such a family. We've spread like butter on a hot potato and I think it's fair to say the old guy looked thrilled. Pretty cool legacy. This reunion is set to be an annual event from now on... something I think is pretty cool. Without wishing to go all Dawson's Creek on you poor folks, I think it's all to easy for people to think family reunions are for losers. But then, maybe that's just other people's families...

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Day 2 - Wet Picnics Are Cool

Right... next time I have any sort of money I will be investing in thermals. Thermal pants, thermal earrings, thermal nosebag, thermal socks, thermal everything. I may even thermulate myself. Permanently. It'll be like laminating except that I'll use asbestos for good measure.

I woke up this morning feeling like dirty roadkill. I was in a tent, wearing a lot of Dad's clothing to keep warm and staring into the face of a more than disgruntled sister. It turns out I'm a night puncher. I had slept like a log... she had spent 6 hours evading my flailing limbs as I made her endure a human fist based gauntlet of panicky sibling sleep.

It's now early evening and she looks a little like she's forgiven me. But this may be only because we've just had a nap together on the sofa in a sort of Forrest-Bubba scenario keeping our heads from smacking the arm of the chair.

So far today has consisted of an excellent walk around an old school National Trust garden, a few hangovers being nursed, a 2 year old playing piano unfathomably loudly, and an epic picnic that could have fed an entire Viking clan. Instead it fed my clan. And we all looked a little uncomfortable on the rest of our walk round Dorset.

There were big expectations for last night and it didn't fail. There's nothing quite like 16 freezing relations sitting drinking unidentified cider type liquid around a chimenea at 1 o clock in the morning. Every conversation had three people mishear certain elements to comic effect midway through.

This evening is set to be a little more heavy on the alcohol. I've already heard jaeger and mojitos in the same sing song sentence which neither my mind nor my liver were thrilled with. I'm lining my stomach with red wine at the moment to just make sure I can handle it. There may be a flaw in my logic somewhere...

Friday, May 27, 2011

Day 1 - 40 Pints of Questionable Cider

Well... here I am in deepest darkest Dorset enjoying the delights of a family that are usually spread far and wide across the British Isles. For this weekend only, we are gathered together in the sprawling house of my aunt and uncle. Now that we've drunk our way into collective memories of all playing naked swing ball together at the age of 4, I think the atmosphere has relaxed somewhat. This process was helped along a little by one of my elder cousins who has turned up to the party with two enormous bottles of "cider". So far, no one has been able to imbibe this cider whilst smelling it at the same time. A few people have passed of the fumes from the glowing orange liquid as sentimental glazing at how lovely the occasion is.

I think the nice thing about this weekend is that it's been organised by us cousins... there are a lot of us cousins. Everyone in my family seems to have put a lot of stock in the instructions to "Go forth and multiply" and thus, there are billions in my generation. It gives this weekend an awesome atmosphere - no one seems to feel like we've all been dragged here to endure endless awkward silences and embarrassing parents. It's like a family reunion - but on our terms. Cue awesome music and the Cohen brothers in to direct something epic.

I am not quite as excited at the prospect of sleeping in my very first tent as I was when I first bought it. That's probably the only downer to my weekend so far. I mean, I understand that I bought the damn thing from Tesco and that it was fairly cheap. But, at the very least I thought it would be waterproof. It appears to have a big section of net over the top of the tent though... this, I'm pretty sure, is a plot flaw in the whole tent creation thing? No? Surely - the most basic thing about a tent is that it needs to have no holes to let rain in? Well, my tent seems to be aerated. But, in a worrying way. I'll have to let you know how that goes tomorrow... when I am soggy again.

Ho hum. But for now, it's greetings from the collection of my nearest and dearest and a promise that there'll be serious escapades tomorrow...

Not Quite San Fernando But Close

So... there was no blog yesterday and I'm terribly ashamed of myself. However, theoretically you'll get two today so you can all stop chewing your pillow cases in despair. I'm still your typey little bitch.

I just seem to be having a few train issues at the moment. Who doesn't love a good train issue? Last night I bombed it down to the West Country for an impending weekend of craziness with relatives. However, I was already cutting it fine by about 5pm when I realised I had a lot to achieve in one evening... I finished work at 5:30 and then had to run home in what can only be described as a cloudburst. It wasn't that it was raining cats and dogs, it was raining cats eating dogs who had amorous intentions for the afore mentioned cats. Bucketing. Pissing it down. Sheets of rain. Rain going sideways. And me in the middle.

Naturally, the inclement weather made everyone dash for the underground where the helpful staff advised us to be careful because it was slippy. We advised back that it's hard to slip when you're stood stock still in the queue you've been in for half an hour. Slipping requires movement.

I sandwiched myself into a damp armpit on the tube and trundelled to my stop before having another 20 minute run like a damp rat through Bermondsey. A few van drivers honked their horns in an either ironic sort of cameradery or a deep appreciation for '90s Gothic eye make up.

I got home and had precisely 14 minutes to pack enough clothes for a weekend's trip to Dorset, family reunion, camping and possible days out. I managed it in 9 minutes which means that when I double check my suitcase later on, I will probably have to fashion an outfit for the family barbecue made of 8 thongs, a flipflop and my housemates's cardigan. There's something about packing in a hurry that makes me absolutely convinced I won't need most of the integral items from my room. I am a fool.

Then I had to buy a tent. Yep. I had 7 minutes to buy a tent from somewhere between Old Kent Road and Paddington station. Now, as much as I 'love' the Old Kent Road, it's not really the place to look for tents. So, I have a tent from Tesco. Yep. I have a Tesco tent. Not having time to check it out yet, I've not yet discovered whether it's made entirely from bin bags or used onion netting but either way I'm not sure it's going to be particularly effective at keeping me comfortable or dry in any situation. Even if I pitched it at The Ritz and it wasn't raining, I feel like this is the sort of tent that will actively seek out ants nests and rain. I'm excited.

With my tent, emo face and soggy clothes bundled into a suitcase, I then made my way to Paddington. I had an argument with a bagel man who took my order (salt beef on poppy), asked if I wanted a drink (I did), and then gave away the last poppy bagel to the man behind me while I was getting a drink. He was totally confused by my anger. I had already ordered the poppy bagel. He knew this. I knew this. The man behind me may not have known this, he is not to blame. But when he asked for a poppy bagel, the answer should have been - "Sorry, this squelchy girl here has just ordered it." Not, "Sure, she's too wet to even taste the seeds. Mange away."

So, anyway, I had to have a cheese bagel instead. I bought two donuts too (one of which, I've just realised is now in my bed having emptied my handbag this morning. That, is going to be disgusting. Please let me remember it when I crawl in later.) and I was really looking forward to sitting with my bagel and my donuts for my 2 hour journey home.

This was not to be the case. The train was RAMMED, I would describe it as "standing room only" except that there wasn't really any room to stand either. And there were hordes of mind numbingly annoying people traipsing up and down the aisles looking for seats. Why bother? Surely, if you are pushing your way through 40 standing, irritated passengers in the gangway, you have enough faith in humanity to accept that if there were seats, these people would not be standing around looking moody and tired? Stay still dickhead, stay still.

But I made it home... and now I am on another "train". I say train, but I think it's actually a bus masquerading as a train. It's held together with wood, spit and lemon curd and is trekking me deep into the heart of the West Country to a place where everyone is called "Bird" and people have less signal than a paraplegic semaphore operative. Gutted.

If I survive this trip you should get the first instalment of "Cousin's Reunion Weekend - Live from the action on Day 1" as early as this evening. Be prepared for mayhem.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

FA Super Injunctions Hit Home

In an unprecedented turn of events, the FA have taken out a superinjunction against anybody suggesting there might be footballers capable of achieving well in the sport without falling balls deep into a scrotty D-List pair of hooters at some point in their career.

The British media has been gagged from even hinting that some people might be interested, let alone capable, of playing football for the sheer joy of the game. An FA spokesman was quoted as saying "In this modern age of online media, social networking and 24 hour partying, it is ridiculous to suggest anybody becomes a professional footballer because they like the game. We have spent hundreds of years purposefully simplifying what was already a mindnumbingly puerile concept, so that people would be able to focus on the disgusting revelations surrounding the sport rather than the game."

He went on to say - "The only reason we continue to include the offside rule is so that these grotesque players can use it as a stubbornly nauseating flirtation device. Football is barely a good game for a playground, let alone a National Sport to be televised and lauded as a worldwide phenomenon. Without the surrounding hotel escapades, drug abuse and wife beating, we would have nothing."

"We would be foolish to continue to allow ludicrous rumours and reports of happily married footballers going home faithfully to their wives and children. If the public though for a minute that this was the secret other side of football, then we may as well encourage them all to watch cricket. We've seen where a clean reputation can get you - Flintoff can steal as many pedaloes as he likes, but without snorting cocaine off the laminted chest of a purpose built granny hooker, cricket will never be the national sport."

The FA's controversial super injunction came after a week of lurid revelations about its star players. One footballer's wife broke down in tears after it was revealed that her husband frequently offered to cook the family meals and often played board games with their youngest child.

"I don't know what we're going to do." She wept, "Our future plans are in tatters. It's almost like the world is suggesting I'm not worth cheating on. If these claims carry on there's going to be no story to sell and no University money for the kids. I'm devastated. I might as well have married for love."

Meanwhile, University applications have shot up across the country as air headed fuck head wannabes everywhere realised that they may actually need to develop a career plan if these scandalous football players continue to behave like normal human beings.

Chanel Number 5, 22 from Dagenham, revealed that she may now "read some books or something" after her plans to spread her legs and hope for the best were dashed by the recent allegations.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Blue Eyeliner

Today I had three job interviews. I don't think I've ever had to analyse my future ambitions and my previous 6 months of employment so much in one day. I think the main things I've discovered are that I don't know what I want to do in my future ambitions, but I do know I don't want to do what I have been doing for the past 6 months.

I think I have spoken about myself so much today that I actually don't even want to blog about me. So, I'm going to blog about someone else.

This is Dave. Dave gets tired a lot. Sometimes Dave wears blue eyeliner to work just to see if people notice. Dave has a boring job. He wears a suit he doesn't like and drives a car he didn't want. Dave wears the blue eyeliner to work just to see if anyone will challenge him about it. No one ever does.

It's Monday today, and Dave is measuring the space between his fingers with a ruler at his desk. He has been doing this for nearly 47 minutes. He knows it's been 47 minutes because the office clock is just above Dave's desk. Dave has set the clock on his computer to two hours ahead of the real time. That way, when it's 4pm in the office, Dave can look at the computer and dream about it actually being 6pm and him being at home watching his DVDs.

Dave loves his DVDs. Some people have families, some people have hobbies, some people have pets. Dave has his DVDs. Most people wouldn't polish a DVD case but Dave loves the stories beneath the covers. he loves staring at the inexpressive silver discs and trying to picture the story playing out beneath its surface. He knows the story is in there... but where in there? DVDs are like people but more dependable. A DVD will always be what it promised to be. The story won't ever change. He might not be able to see it, but he knows it's there and that is a very comforting thing.

Dave's DVDs. That's the dream... the shop, with blue carpet and blinds that can let in a little or a lot of light. Dave's DVDs. Supremely cheap stories for anyone to borrow or buy... after they've asked Dave his expert opinion and he's advised which DVD would suit them best. Dave will be like a Dr of DVDs... the glorious man who always has the right prescription for whatever ails his patient.

Every day that he sits at his desk measuring the gaps between his fingers and watching the clock is another day where the pounds in the bank build up and he is one step closer to Dave's DVDs. It's a small dream. But it's still a dream.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Adventure Calling

I've decided I need to have an adventure soon or my brain is going to fall out of my ears through sheer tedium. I don't mind too much what this adventure is about - it can be anythign from a great new job to riding a bear naked through the wilds of Siberia with Fleetwood Mac playing through speakers which have been surgically implanted into my elbows. Literally anything. I'm just a little tired of routine and repetition.

No one warns you that the long stretch of adult hood is insanely long compared to anything you've dealt with before. From birth until abotu 24 your time is nicely broken up into 2-7 year stints at different institutions. Every now and again you get to re-evaluate and choose what you're doing next, where you're going to do it. Then, all of a sudden you become a twenty-something and you're supposed to be decided and set in your ways. For 40 years. 40 YEARS. Give or take. I can't think of anything I want to do for that long... even stuff I like doing, I don't want to do it for that long. I think if I ate chocolate for 40 years I'd be sick - but I do love doing it. I can't even watch Planet Earth non-stop for more than two days.

But changing your mind about what you want to spend your planet time doing is seen as a sign of weakness I think. Like you didn't sort things out well enough in your early days and now you are flighty and unprepared. This is not the case.

I think we should all be given 5 yearly review meetings where you can opt out. Just put your hands up and say - I've done this, it's good and it's bad and now I want to leave thanks. I also think childless marriages should have this get out clause too. Commitment is not a good thing. It's a tedious thing designed to make you stay in your place. My place is boring and I'm looking forward to moving on.

Short of beign able to find a bear that is kind enough to want me to ride it naked with some very loud (but excellent) music, it's looking like I'm going to have to be finding that job. I think I'd make a great mascott for something... I'm not sure what. I'm not veyr sporty so it probably wouldn't do to have me anywhere near a pitch. I am quite energetic - perhaps I could be a new animated thingy for EDF or British Gas. I'd be perfectly happy to do that... but not for too long. Naturally.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Sick - Sick All Over

I am so full of snot that if I died now and got mummifed and people dug me up in a couple of hundred years they would think I was a whole new species that spat snot at people in a defense mechanism. The fact that I died sad and alone by my laptop would prove the point that creatures full of snot do not attract fellow creatures to hang out with them. They will think that the snot has the potential to power my laptop and that I had to periodically sneeze into the disc drive to keep the screen alive.

If the snot ever dries up I'm not sure how I'm going to cope. I've even started talking to it. Been singing it lullabyes, been stroking it... been moulding versions of my loved ones out of some of the more malleable snot. I have so much snot I could open up a snot emporium and rival Harrods with my business and the number of well dressed tourists coming my way. People would be queueing up and down Old Kent Road with buckets, just trying to catch a drop of my snot.

The problem is that the snot is so heavy it's giving me a headache. This means my head needs to be on something soft and this has resulted in boredom so intense that not even my aquarium is shifting the malaise. I have barely spoken to anyone all day, I've hardly moved and I don't have any plans this evening. This is not a good state of affairs. I predict that by 9pm I will have managed to animate the snot people and make them dance while I cackle maniacally and shred the yellow pages in a bid to detroy capitalism.


I'm petrified to go outside because I am scared of wind and there is more wind outside than there is snot in my head. Wind is the sneakiest of all weather forms and I simply will not allow it bamboozle me in the way it is messing with my neighbours. I am staying firmly indoors with my snot and my boredom. But I am still bored. I'm frightened I will never stop being bored because the boredom has settled to such depths that when they find my mummified body they'll think that boredom and snot went hand in hand and that everyone in my little snot species was glazed eyed and lethargic.

If there is anyone out there with the capacity to bring some form of entertainment into my world in the next few hours I'll be eternally grateful. I might even make you your own snot person. I'm kind like that.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Hysterically Negative

I think I'm in the Perfect Storm... I've totally lost it blog folks... I mean it. I've eaten a whole packet of biscuits and a whole packet of Halls Soothers. My throat feels like I've been eating vinegar soaked hedgehogs and my arms are all wobbly like they are made of spaghetti.

My cheeks are burning up and I am fairly sure I'm not meant to be at work because I keep laughing hysterically and I don't seem to have the ability to focus on things particularly well. If nothing else it's an exciting time to be.

I am also feeling particularly anarchic this morning which is leading to an increase in vocal volume combined with complete disinterest in whether I irritate my superiors. When I handed in my notice I was asked to stay on at the company to help train my replacement and to help the company out. I agreed. I didn't want to shaft them totally and, even though I don't want to stay, I agreed to help them out. I think this was pretty good of me, given the comission debacle, and I've been trying my best to help out.

Yesterday, however, in a chaotic turn of events designed to tip me over the edge, my replacement told me that on her first day on the job she was taken aside and told not to listen to me at all because I was such a negative person. My poor replacement was told not to ask for my help or follow my example but to do all her learning from the lady leading my character assassination. This particular woman has not spoken to my replacement since that day. 2 weeks ago. So, the poor girl has come in to a new job and been left to train with me (high negativity risk - you know what I'm like! Little rain cloud over here) whilst being told not to listen to me, but also not given anyone else to particularly listen to.

Was I furious when I found this out? Was I sorely tempted to throw my laptop at a certain person's head and storm out of the office screaming "I PUT THE EG IN NEGATIVE"? You bet your fancy ass I was.

Have I done any of those things? No. Because I am professional. Sort of. And because I feel very, very ill. I don't really have the capacity to exact my revenge right now. I'm off my tits on sugar, painkillers and cherry flavouring. Can barely feel my elbows I'm so face-bendingly out of it. Liquid lunch? Yes.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Dream Job

Last night I had an interview for a job I would absolutely love to have - OK so it's not my dream job, but then I'm not sure there's a job out there where you can feed David Attenborough grapes for 8 hours a day (he'd be sick) - so this is almost as close as I can get at the moment.

Having a really good job interview is a little bit like meeting someone on a night out and then having to seriously hope they can find you on Facebook afterwards to look into seeing you again. A million things suddenly occur to you about what you could have done better, been clearer on or things you could have put on your CV that would have made you the most super-dooper candidate they have.

It would be really nice to be able to sit in on all the other candidates and tut as they try and answer questions. Just the odd "Really?!" under your breath to unsettle them and make the interviewer think very hard about anything they might come out with. The frustration is knowing that you are perfect for a role but your mouth is not playing ball and letting the right words come out of your mouth... instead of saying that you're looking for a fresh challenge and you want the job because you've got a career plan to stick to and you're looking for a new industry, you've said you want the job because you've gotten to level 65 on Tetris now through sheer boredom in your current job and so please can you work somewhere else?

Other unsuitable things to admit in your interview include, but are not limited to -

1. This office is closer to my home than my current job so I can sleep more if I work here.
2. I have slept with everybody interesting in my current office - fresh meat required.
3. When my boss finds the files I accidentally saved on the shared file I am going to have to leave anyway.
4. You guys are allowed to wear jeans here and, to be honest, I hate ironing so it suits me perfectly.
5. You don't seem to be able to do that "raising one eyebrow" thing that means you are displeased but won't say anything. I find that easier to work with.
6. No one has mentioned cold calling.
7. You are willing to pay me quite a lot of money. This pleases me.
8. Your lift looks reliable and I've never been one for turning up to work looking sweaty because I can handle a maximum of 8 steps.
9. You seem like you'll be OK with me listening to Pop Master on Radio 2 every morning without fail.
10. I am here because you're one of the only people who offered me an interview.

Let's just hope all the pearls of idiocy I probably came out with last night are of less significance than the ones above.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Ugly and Painful Simply Isn't Fair

Dear Shoes,

Never in my life have I been bullied in such an obvious, cruel and disheartening manner. We have barely known each other for 12 hours and already you are subjecting me to mental and physical torture which I cannot bear. How is it possible that I have incurred your wrath within such a short space of time?

When I saw you there on the shelf I thought to myself, "Well, they're not the prettiest shoes in the world... in fact they're sinfully ugly and duller than dish water, but I bet they will be good companions on the lonely walk to work. We can be friends. We'll talk about how we're so glad we found each other, and at the end of a long day in silly heels, I'll slip you on and we'll make our way home safe in the knowledge that we get along so well."

But you didn't stand up to your end of the bargain did you? No. After one trip to the tube station I look like my heels have been attacked by rabid shrews with a grudge against the common foot. Me feet look like I'm harvesting my own personal bubble wrap crop. And it's all down to you - you bastards.

I wouldn't mind if you were an elegant, Laboutin heel with a patent leather toe and a sensual red underside. But you are not. If you were beautiful it would be worth the pain... I'd smile through the tears and show people how proudly I wore you... even with the blood from my toes staining the pavement as I walked. But you are nasty little shoes. You are boring black leather with, let's face it, a frankly inexplicable decoration on the side... how is it that you can hurt so much and be so deformed?

Whoever created you must have been on the Lidl's Shoe Making Course in order to have created such a fundamentally flawed piece of footwear... there is simply no other explanation for your behaviour. Were you crafted by monkeys in a dark room with the constant threat of explosions? Had whoever made you ever seen the shape of the average foot? Perhaps you are designed for a whole other species and this is why my beloved hooves are now cowering in terror looking like they've just been flogged by a particularly vengeful pirate captain.

Needless to say I am furious. I thought you might have calmed down at the point where I stopped to waste two perfectly good Elastoplasts on my weeping heels. But no. You just chewed up the plasters so that now I not only have blisters, I have sticky blisters with a dirty black rectangle around them where the glue from the plaster has really only succeeded in ensuring I look like a geometric hobo. I bought you specifically for the job interview I have this afternoon where I am now going to turn up inviting questions as to why I have not ticked the disablities box when it is quite obvious I have a club foot due to the manner in which I am hobbling.

Short of cutting off all my toes and reaaranging them to alternative positions on my foot, I really can't see any way you and I are going to get along well enough for me to do anything other than smash bugs with you.  What a collossal waste of my affection, money and foot skin you have been.

Send my regards to the devil you beastly little aphids.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Not Saying Sorry

I'm very attracted to the back of his neck... it looks strong and his hair is just the right length for me to run my fingers over and feel it bristling. He's reading; that's a good sign. I can't see what he's reading because he's sitting in the seats in front of me - hence me having to have made the decision that it's the back of his neck that's attractive.

He also has a nice jumper on. I would quite enjoy peeling that jumper off his torso... letting it fall on the floor, then I could kick it away with my toes and start on the white shirt he's wearing underneath it. I wonder if he has a hairy chest? I like a little bit of hair on a man. Too smooth skinned and they start to look too young. I'm sure this guy has hair.

I could just go and slip into the seat next to him now. Strike up a conversation and let my hand casually fall into his lap... I wonder what he would do? People do this kind of thing all the time... in films, why can't I just try it now and see what happens?

Would anyone else in the carriage notice if he just got me off silently while we passed through Reading? Would anybody care if they did know? Who doesn't want their commute livened up by an angry, horny woman making a fool of herself.

Then I'd really have something to apologise to you for. When I meet you at the ticket barrier in Paddington and you look at me with those eyes that are half pitying me for being so stupid and half congratulating yourself for being so clever in sticking by me through my idiocy. It would wipe the smug smile off your patronising face if you knew I could still feel another man's fingers playing me beneath my skirt.

I don't want to apologise to you. I know I'm going to have to, but it's not the point. I don't feel sorry for what I've done - I don't think I've done anything. You'll make me feel very small if I try and tell you this though... you'll say I'm behaving like a child and that I should learn to see things from other people's perspectives. You'll tell me I'm demanding, that I need too much from you and that if I wanted to make you happy I'd learn to be more independent.

Well, maybe my independence will start with fucking a stranger in the cubicle of the 09:17 to London Paddington. Maybe I should learn to satisfy myself. Or at least find somebody more accommodating to do it for me.

I'm not sure why I'm so attracted to him. Maybe I'm not, maybe it's just pent up frustration at how angry I am with you and how I won't do anything about it. I'll let you put your arm around me and then we'll go and have perfunctory sex at your house. Because we never go to mine. You don't like it there. I don't want to lie beneath you at your house. I want to be pushed up against the window here on the train - not caring. And then I want to never tell you. I want to not tell you how he pulled my hair a little and didn't question me when I asked for it. How he didn't make me feel wrong.

I'd like to have a secret form you... something you'd never guess, you'd never suspect. In all your patronising talks with me about how our relationship is going, you've never once suspected I could look at another man. How would you react if you found out what I'm thinking now? If you could read my thoughts. If those hazy blue eyes could see behind mine and tell how much I want to change this. How much I want to hurt the image of me you have in your mind... how much I need to get out.

I'll never do it. I won't touch him... I want to. I want to feel his mouth hard on mine and have him all over with me without a hint of emotion. Uncomplicated. Not like it is with you. But I won't do it. I'll push my way through ticket gate at Paddington and let you kiss me on the forehead before I tell you how embarassed I am at having upset you and you take me back to your house and we cook the dinner you enjoy.

I'm a fool.

Error Message

This is a short message from your friends at Lexx enterprises to tell you that we are literally too exhausted to blog today. Not only has filming wrapped and forced us to return to the everlasting grind of disappointment that is London, but it is now midnight and we've just got in bed. We have to be up at 6 to go to Mordor and fight the good fight to keep capitalism alive and well.

It's not that we wouldn't blog if we could, it's just that we have an aquarium that needs attending to (virtual of course) and we're worried that if we do blog it's going to be one of the 3 things:
1. Incredibly surreal and a bit frightening
2. Depressing to the point we wish we were watching The Only Way Is Essex rather than reading it
3. Written in the third person.

Do you understand where we're coming from now? It's just not in anybody's best interests to write a blog when you're this far down the line of monster raving lunacy... please may we be forgiven for not scrawling anything inane today? Also, when you're this uncertain whether anybody reads the damn thing anyway, this much pawing for excuses to have not blogged is tantamount to schizophrenia and should probably be deleted.

Good night. x

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Charged With Aggravated Exhaustion

I’m now at that point of tiredness where I’m running purely on nutrients from the last things I ate and a leftover buzz from last night. Given that the last thing I ate was ASDA Smartprice ravioli and last night I watched the Eurovision Song Contest, I’m not feeling particularly buzzing. I’ve just got on a train which seems to be going to Canterbury via every single other town, village and hamlet in Kent, much to the annoyance of my brain which is insisting we sleep for a while before doing an ill advised gig to a potentially non-existent audience tonight.

It’s not that I’m ungrateful: I’ve had a wonderful weekend filming and pretending like I’m a real proppa actress wot like does this all the time, and now I’m heading to my University stomping grounds to show them how I’ve not given up yet. So, it’s not that I’m ungrateful – it’s just that I’m tired. And tomorrow I will be up at 6am to go back to Brighton and do the final day of the shoot. So it’s certainly not that I’m ungrateful; it’s just that my eyes feel like a sand pit and my head is trying in vain to convince itself that every other surface is comfortable enough to sleep on.

There’s something about train seats that are designed to encourage you to receive a fine. There is no possible way to be comfortable enough to sleep on a train without putting your feet on a seat. Now, I’ve ranted before about train seats only being designed for people with very anomalous body shapes but I’m not afraid to ask the question: Why can’t we design a seat you can nap on without being a dick about it?

Surely it’s not that difficult to laminate a small portion of the seat so that it’s OK to put your feet up there should you need a bit of shut eye? And, quite frankly, if you’re going to cover a chair in carpet you’re going to make feet incredibly confused about why they shouldn’t be up there. You ask any dog trainer – it’s about consistency of message. As soon as you fine people have elected me Queen of the Logical Thinking World I’ll put this in to the board of directors and see if we can’t get this all straightened out for you.

My sleepiness is not helped by the fact that I had yet another incredibly vivid dream last night. The only problem was, my dream appeared to have been modelled on a piece of Greek theatre, in that, nothing of any interest happened in the dream but all seemed to be reported ad nauseum until I was completely baffled by the proceedings. Apparently (in the dream) I had taken an awful lot of mescaline and was missing about 4 days of my life and people kept coming up to me and asking why I had done a series of ridiculous things. Now, I am not in to my drugs – I have never taken mescaline in my life – but I am reading Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas at the moment which seems to be the closest to an explanation I have.

This dream and the book combined have been a far more effective course of anti-drug therapy than anything else I can imagine – drugs sound awful! Clearly I was a tosspot when I was off my face too because I seemed to have done a lot of things wearing a stolen shower cap. No one knew what I’d done with the shower cap though which was very important. Drugs, I have learnt, are exhausting to dream about and leave you contemplating lying in the aisle of a dirty, dirty train the next day while you let your ears have a rest from the upright position.
Don’t take drugs.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Eurovision Is Better Than Christmas

Finally. I've eaten my pot noodle, I've made my cup of tea and I'm now sat comfortably with the vomit inducing spectacle playing out in front of me in glorious technicolour. As I type a Sand Painter - winner of Ukraine's Got Talent is decorating the stage to a song sung by a woman with feathery shoulder pants and the bleachedest hair I've ever seen.

This is amazing.

Now, usually my Eurovision festvities would involve me being with my older sister with a sharpened pencil and score card to keep a scrutinous eye on the proceedings. I haven't been able to get home this year due to these filming commitments so instead I'm eating chocolate hobnobs and sitting with my friend's dad (who I met for the first time yesterday) and wondering how my life always ends up this surreal.

Graham Norton is doing a good job of being a drunk, sarcy bastard while the acts attempt to stay afloat without autotune and a soul. What more could you want in an evening's entertainment? This is so much better than Britain's Got Talent or X-Factor or any of that other crap, purely because - by having got this far, sane people have voted each of these acts as the best they had already.

We've spewed out Blue this year... it's not that we're proud of ourselves is it? It's that we're desperate. What a sad state for a country to be so desperate, and not desperate to win - just desperate to get into double figures - that we've resurrected a past their prime manband to represent us. Did no one at that meeting clear their throat and tentatively just try, "Ahem - Adele?".

It would be nice if, just for one year we could put forward someone with actual talent who might have been born in the British Isles... I mean, we've had one or two haven't we? I think the British music scene is fairly eclectic isn't it? Got a fairly good reputation hasn't it?

It's almost like we lose our bottle. Are we worried people think we're too good at too many things and that we should be letting someone else have a go? Because, I've got news for you Britain - we don't exactly clean up at the Olympics either. Equally though, we never exactly go crazy and do something psychotic either... why not solve the London homeless issue by training a tramp choir to sing a song written by a tearful Elton John about our people's princess? Right at the end we can wheel out Peter Kay to wink hilariously and remind the rest of the world why they love us... a guaranteed win methinks. Let's go Britain...

Friday, May 13, 2011

Window Fish Biscuits

I am in Brighton! I love to be in Brighton! I think Brighton is the only place in Britain I want to live apart from my beloved Somerset. It has everything -

Beach - check.
Nutters - check.
Bars - check.
Grassy places - check.
Friends - check.
Comedy & theatre - check.

What more could you want??

This weekend I am here working on a project called "v-loggers" (which is not an energy drink designed to make you poop). It is an independent pilot being made for a sitcom for TV. I am playing The Girlfriend. She is a very understanding, patient and loving girlfriend so I'm struggling with the characterisation somewhat but nonetheless enjoying the challenge.

Oooh, before I forget - on the subject of dreams (from yesterday's blog)... last night I had a very vivid dream that I kept being attacked by a cat. Now, the weird thing was in my dream the cat belonged to the people I am currently staying with, but in reality that cat is a cat I am secretly terrified of that belongs to some other friends of mine who live back in London. The other weird thing about this cat was that instead of having normal claws, it had very specific tacks used in joining wood together (which I haven't used for some time having not been building with my dear old dad). The cat kept leaving up but because of the design of the wood tack claws he kept getting stuck into me and hanging off. This was neither pleasant, nor particularly useful for the cat who had just become a sort of tumor. All very distressing and confusing to me as I didn't want to be in pain for an entire dream. Why on earth would anyone dream that?

So, today I was up bright and early and off to filming. Since I come from a theatre background (I realise that makes it sound like I wander out of the cyclorama when I go places) I am not used to the nuances of filming and things like continuity and crossing the line. It is all terribly complicated.

Today it has culminated in someone having the specific job of "Replacing The Bourbon" every time we had to redo a scene or do it from a different angle. It's also meant that one poor guy has eaten his body weight in the brown delights. Someone also had the job of checking the temperature of the window panes. I thought this was ridiculous at first until I was reliably informed that if you black out windows from the outside on a sunny day they can crack due to the heat and so must be air-rated. Heat sensitive windows... what a genius idea. Then there were the fish. The bubbles for the fish tank had to be switched on and off every single time we wanted to do a take. Apparently the fish die if there are no bubbles. But fish needing bubbles was innapropriately loud for the microphone. The devil's in the details!

Now I am back on the sofa and have an entire night of admin ahead of me in preparation for the London Festival Fringe Preview season at the Glassblower (Soho - plug plug plug) in July. I have 24 shows to list on every single online place you can list stuff... who wouldn't want to be me? I hope you're having fun outside Brighton... I'm trying to be with you. Promise.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Dreams I Would Rather Not Have

What is a dream that is neither pleasant nor a nightmare?

I thought I understood the dreaming process, in that it's the movement of your short term memory in to long term memory, it can sometimes seem properly random because you actually have about 6 dreams per night but don't remember them all separately hence the jumps in narrative. It's usually connected to your subconscious and all the stuff that's sort of bubbling away beneath the surface.

So why do you sometimes dream of stuff that's totally out of the blue and the first you've thought of it for a long time?

Just recently I've had a whole string of dreams about people and things that have been off my radar for months and months. For example, I've not expressed any desire to be a tartan honey badger for as long as I can remember and yet there I am in my local primary school being introduced to the school by the friendly animal lady who brings the animals round.

Is it an animal link? Because, I do have a very well kept aquarium application on my phone which requires monitoring during the day - is this causing my mind to spring thoughts of becoming a honey badger on me while I catch my beauty winks? Because, I can honestly say I rarely think of honey badgers and I don't have a particularly strong link to tartan either. I wouldn't mind being a mermaid... but I never dream of that? My aquarium is a constant source of joy and quite the creative challenge to name (and remember the names) of a changing pool of 30 fish. Phew!

I also seem to dream about the ex quite a lot - although is more understandable I suppose. The problem with my dreams though, is that I'm never mad at him in them. Not that I'm ever particularly mad at anyone - I have a fabulous inability to hold a grudge against anyone. I would probably have taken Hitler back if he'd promised never to do it again. I just don't seem to have a capacity for disliking people long term. This is definitely a good thing... but in my dreams it would be nice if I could have a few more Kill Bill genes surely?

Yes, I'm meek and so eventually I will get the earth - brilliant, the meek are going to get it as soon as we've had all the fossil fuels and wiped out the interesting species. But, just for now can I be a revenge exacting honey badger who likes to bludgeon people to death with Lee Evans DVDs? (DVDs of him, not his personal library which I would imagine is similar to most other people's.)

My last dream about the ex had us both in a play. But I had forgotten my costume and so was a little grumpy. Everyone else in the play seemed to have a stream of costumes which made no sense at all - I hope this isn't my subconscious trying to give me script ideas, because I don't think anything with a ninja, a blue man and several panto horses is going to get me an Olivier award.

So, if anyone who knows about these things could let me know what I have to eat before bed to get the dreams I want, please do let me know. I've decided that it could be quite beneficial to my overall happiness - I dream very vividly and I always remember them so if I am a lottery winner for 8 hours a day, things will be undoubtedly a lot better. Thanks.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Daddy's Girl

At what point as a grown up person do you stop thinking your Dad is just the best man in the whole world?

Because, for my younger readers, I'm 24 now and it turns out this isn't the age that it happens. I still think my Dad is brilliant and, short of him going on a rampage and murdering Will Young, Jason Mraz and David Jason, I can't see my opinion on him changing.

There's somethng magical about a Dad that just makes you realise there's nothing a beard and some BBQd food can't solve for you. I've largely decided the next 40 years of my life will be spent moulding my brother into a very similar format to my Dad (maybe minus the penchant for incredibly dull TV shows). I will never understand how someone as interesting as my father manages to repeatedly watch Eggheads without screaming in frustration at the mind numbingly idiotic fanny-packs who insist on giving us their life story before answering any question.

A typical Eggheads exchange will go something like this -
So, which animal lives in the desert and can have or one or two humps on it's back?
Well, it's interesting you should ask that, actually. Because, my husband Brian and I met on a cruise ship back in the late 80s and when we met he was smoking Marlborough Reds. And of course, another type of cigarette is the Camel.
Correct! And what an interesting story...

At this point our TV screen is covered in blood where I've begun furiously bashing my face against the glass to try and make it stop (not sure if I'm trying to make my life or the show stop - it's all the same). When Dad is subjecting us to Eggheads he likes to watch "How It's Made". This is a show that exemplifies exactly how little human blood most TV insiders must have. I have watched episodes of this show where they show you how mother boards are made, how does cardboard get its layers, how does a plank of wood make it to the hardware store... how much of this TV show can you put up with before you start bludgeoning people to death with an axe made from your TV licenses? But, for some reason my Dad loves this show. He is odd.

When I was little one of my favourite things to do with my Dad was to watch Transworld Sport on a Saturday morning on the sofa before everyone else got up and before Grandstand started. Transworld Sport was a magical show where all the interesting sporting events from round the world got coverage and you could be watching skiing one minute and sumo wrestling the next. Nothing better than to watch that with a hug from your Dad and half your brain trying to work out why adults don't like cartoons but do like coffee.

One of the saddest realities I've had to face is that it doesn't matter how grown up I get, I will never be a storng enough person (emotionally or physically) to deal with my Dad's "pokey finger". Now, before you all start sniggering like yucky folk, my Dad's pokey finger is his right hand indexd finger which is UNBELIEVABLY STRONG. You get that finger under your collar bone and you are literally out of action for as long as my Dad decides you need punishing. The problem with "pokey finger" is that it doesn't really hurt enough to stop you laughing and how it tickles a little bit, but you are absolutely sure you don't want it to continue for any longer than necessary. there must be some kind of parenting class that teaches you how to master these kind of control techniques,

In my opinion, in order to be a good Dad, you need the following things -

1. A beard
2. Smiley eyes
3. A dressing gown that is older than most of your children
4. A deep voice that could read bedtimes stories but probably won't unless it's a very special occasion.
5. The ability to drive ANYTHING
6. Bat like hearing for the second you are up to something naughty.
7. The capacity to pretend you don't know that all your children have vomited vodka through their nose at some point in their lives.
8. Tolerance for frequent financial begging
9. Some kind of toilet library.
10. The ability to annoy any of your offspring at will with just one awful punchline or abitrary rule you've just invented.

Where would we be without our Dads??

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A Letter To The People Responsible For Employment

Dear jobs market/education system,

I have noticed a slight problem and, if I'm honest, I don't know who is to blame so I thought I'd just drop you this note to ask whether we can fix it. In recent months I have noticed that it is quite difficult to find a job and I'm not sure who started this difficulty but one of you needs to fix it. Could someone please leave me a voicemail to let me know whether the issue is -

a) Jobs market - you started requesting very, very, very specific qualifications for your precious positions and so eduction system had to step in and start producing a plethora of ridiculously focused degrees.

b) Education system, you got bored and started churning out degrees with incredibly spurious links to intelligence and the ability to hold down a job because you have a wide range of skills including common sense.

The problem is, both of you, that I don't have an NVQ in Stapler Safety, so I can't apply for 84% of office jobs, but there isn't a way to put in the little boxes on the Guardian Jobs Website that "I have completed a degree and survived 24 years without a stapler in my eye so I can probably do that for you with minimal training."

One of you is going to have to become more open minded if this is going to work because otherwise we are going to have a workforce who can all do one thing very very well but have no transferrable skills. Anyone with a good head on their shoulders that's capable of doing a lot of things (maybe even at the same time) isn't going to be specific enough to get a job. Then, Britain is going to have an army of highly organised and motivated hobos. This isn't going to work? Can you see that?

I think what we're going to have to do is start being a bit more open minded? For example, Education system - if a degree is realistically not going to get anyone any work once you've charged them for it, shall we stop getting people in to study them?

And, jobs market - don't think you're getting off scot free - how about you stop asking for 9,000 specific bullet points of experience? Feel free to request a degree, but maybe don't request that the degree was completed on the back of a jackdaw with one eye closed and a soundtrack played by Simon and Garfunkle? No one wants you to continue in your high maintenance fashion because you're going to end up single and alone. Please think about it.

If you could both have a think and get back to me about how sensible the current situation is, I'd really appreciate it. I can't help but feel we're on a slippery slope to their being a specific 4 year degree for every potential job position and once you've done that degree you have lost any hope of ever doing anything else. Perhaps someone could accept that if you've done one job, you're brain is agile enough to pick up another one with relative ease? If you continue to look only for people who have already had this job at a previous company, you are going to continue to employ people who don't really like the job, hence their desire to move in the first place, but can't get anything else so continue to do it whilst bitching and moaning.

Good. Glad we got that cleared up. Now, about your day...


(This may well end up being my new cover letter...)

Monday, May 9, 2011

And I Know It's Going To Be...

...A LOVELY DAY! LOVELY DAY, LOVELY DAY, lovely day...a lovely daaaaaaaaaaay!!!

Ta Dah!!! It's bloggyoke - my latest invention. I'm not sure it's going to catch on and I don't know how I monitor the effects of you guys joining in... so, erm, it might have been a bit of a failure. But - we can reminisce about it now, can't we... eh? Yeah?! We can be like, "Ah, do you remember back at the beginning of the blog? Yeah! When I was like - And I know it's going to be... - and then we all joined in - A LOVELY DAY! Wasn't it fun? Yeah. Those were the lines. Happy sigh."

What I'm doing is bonding us as a friendship group and giving us familiar territory that we will pretend was superb in 5 years when actually we were all a little confused and bored when it actually happened. Feel better? If you went to University you'll understand exactly what I'm talking about. If you didn't, just substitute University for Primary Schools and keeping crayons in your pants.

Yesterday I spent a delightful afternoon in Bromley watching a trashy American TV show called "Bridezillas". Now, I have a soft spot for television which I know isn't educational, isn't classy and isn't doing the world any favours... but I happen to enjoy it and it is my (tame) guilty pleasure which I won't give up. Not for you, not for anybody. But maybe for Gerrard Butler.

I find it hard to switch off (as regular readers might have noticed...!), I over-think most things and have a tendency to think myslef round in circles that hurt the brain after a while. Trash TV is one of the few things that allows me to shut off properly - I can happily while away an hour being completely stuck in the world of whatever I'm watching. Books don't do it, computer games don't do it - it's TV. Bridezillas has to have climbed fairly high on my list of shows that I'll now be tuning in to when there's a spare tub of icing to eat and an hour with nothing to plan in.

I have never ever felt so good about myself in my life. So what if I'm permanently single? I have manners! So what if I don't have the world's most important job - I know how to behave at an occasion so as not to humiliate my entire family! So what if I have legs like the human equivalent of a dachsund? I don't dress like I got attacked by a Lycra monster when I left my caravan! Brilliant!

How these women still have women around willing to be their bridesmaids (let alone browbeaten an equally horrendous man into marrying them) is anyone's guess! It's crazy! By the end of the episode you are half expecting the bride to burst into flames when she enters the church... out of the flames will run 100s of tiny demons who have been masquerading as the blushing bride this whole time. The demons then feast on the squirming corpse of the groom while the families gather round arguing over who gets the £250 from You've Been Framed.

I recommend this show to anyone who ever has moments of low self-esteem and/or enjoys just watching how people live and wondering what would have to happen in their own lives for life to reach this kind of level...

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Turns Out Nudity Was An Option

It just wasn't my option.

Have you ever tried to dance to 1930s tunes while a gold man with dreadlocks and a wildly flailing todger boogies on down next to you?

Have you ever sung along to Bugsy Malone while a transvestite who looks cuter than you in a dress flashes some thigh by the bar?

Have you ever tried to look comfortable whilst simultaneously keeping both nipples inside the corset you borrowed from a Polly Pocket?

Have you ever thought to yourself "Everyone here has made a real effort to dress the part", and then turned round to see a guest with grey hair completely naked trying to dance with your confused friend. Have you then turned the other way to see a man in a string vest, leather trousers and Futurama mask?

Have you ever used so many rhetorical questions that you've largely forgotten what your point was?

I tried my best to boogie on down with the best of them - I have learnt some important things about myself... including that I will try and touch a bottom if it's out in public, I am not a natural ballroom dancer and that I have a tendency to look like a miserable cow as soon as someone produces a camera...

I felt a little sorry for most of the people in the vicinity when I tried to dance - if it wasn't a stray boob trying it's best to act as an unwanted air bag, it was an elbow attempting to cause ferocious nose bleeds. I had to make my apologies and tell the unfortunate "Ewan" (my second dance partner of the evening) that I was leaving when I'd shuffled my way through two songs with him and then felt like if I stayed any longer I was going to break a couple of his toes. I think he was relieved but to be honest the tears in his eyes had been there since one of carefully curled and hairsprayed ringlets had hit him early on in our tango.

Oh, and a quick note on corsets - WHAT THE FRIGGING HELL? Who thought that it would be a good  idea to invent an item of clothing that encourages your spleen to rent the back of your throat as a summer house? Breathing is an important part of my day to day life - something that the man who invented the corset clearly capitalised on... "I know, let's form an outfit that forces the breasts up into the nostrils as soon as you take in air." Brilliant. Thanks for that - never trying that as an ensemble again. I felt like I ought to be wearing a badge that said 'wench' and possibly carrying steins of beer. I think it's best to leave the corsets and the dancing to graceful people. I'll stick to my soapbox and shorts thanks.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Nudity is Not an Option

I thought I was going to a posh frocked masked ball tonight. Before you start any of your scoffing about how I must have misinterpreted and I'm not actually invited - I'm still going, it's just that it's not quite a posh frocked masked ball... having looked at the website for the event, it turns out it's a little bit more of a nakey, nudey, posh masked (but not necessarily clothed) ball.

There will be a buffet... but there will be a few naked people lying artistically in the buffet. There will be masks, but I may be running around slipping them down to lower parts of people to cover other bits of their anatomy. Why would you put a naked person on a buffet? Naked people are terrifying, they generally signify 1 of 4 things -

1. A naked person you are supposed to touch privately and make them feel all tingly. This is a terrifying prospect because some of us are not natural lovers. We like to be clothed, with no skin touching someone else's skin, and we like to not to have to pretend we like the idea of being mauled. That's just how some of us work. And we like it like that. So there. So please don't put naked people in our buffets.

2. A naked person (usually very young or very old) who is naked because they need taking care of. This may involve bathing and putting cream on the areas of the anatomy that are not seen when the person is not nudey. If this naked person is your own (either parent or child) then it may not be considered too bad...however, it may still be uncomfortable.

3.A surprise naked person. These are potentially the worst type of naked person because they constitute a very real nudey danger. This is either a surprise nudey person in your immediate vicinity (I still have flash backs to my second year at University when I returned to my room with two cups of tea to see that they guy who had called round was a little more comfortable in my presence than I'd thought. The tea had already left my hands before the promise to put his pants back on had left his lips. No one likes a scalded testicle.) or a nudey person out in the wild. Arguably the wild naked person is slightly more alarming because it shows mental instability and potential desire to be infectious. If nudity spread as an epidemic then we would have to consider laminated bus seats and a lot more exercise.

4. A nudey person hired to make you feel inferior at what was meant to be a posh frock masked ball that you are going to in support of your beloved housemate's birthday. I am going to take a lot of hessian sacks and signs that say "What would your mother think?" and then wander round with a Nora Batty type expression on my face while people tut and tell me I'm a kill joy. I'm not a kill joy, I'm just a nervous nudey person. I will feel insecure because if I was nude on a buffet people would be asking why there were so many sausage rolls and why someone had thought to put sundried tomatoes on the two iced buns.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Campaign To Get Me Elected

Hello all, this is the beginning of my campaign election. I feel I would represent the people, represent our innermost thoughts, represent the way we really feel about things and get them across in an accessible, edgy and understandable manner.

I believe I have the tact to discuss relations with our fellow Europeans without offending long term, without soft footing for fear of reprisals and without being blindly personal in my feelings on certain performances.

I would be prepared to conduct substantial research to make sure my coverage of all events and history was fair, interesting and contributed well to the proceedings. I would be willing to travel, to dress for the role and to use my position in the spotlight to bring events up to date with a modern audience.

For too long, it has been viewed as uncool to want to be involved - people have questioned the relevancy of theis 'outdated' procedure asking why so much money is wasted, why we continue to subject ourselves to humiliation and why we let the sorry charade continue.

But this is exactly why the Eurovision Song Contest needs me. I believe I am just the person to put this embarassing Graham Norton period aside and step into the shoes/slippers of Terry Wogan to bring you all the latest news from the stadium.

I can be a bitch, I can be kind, I can comment beyond belief on awful outfits and, if required, I can also have a very good go at some of the more hilarious dance moves. For the last 10 years I have faithfully watched Eurovision with unwavering commitment - I've seen transvestites, bum cheeks, unkempt saccharine and blindingly horrendous electropop. But my scorecard and I have sat faithfully by, never giving up home that one year there might be some genuine entertainment in the show.

When will England win again?
When will the Israeli entry not make you want to choke yourself on romantic warbling?
When will Ireland learn that panpipes and violins are a thing of the past?
When will Germany stop scaring us?

When will my shrill little voice be bringing you all the commentary you can handle?

Only you can make that happen. Get protesting people and let's see what we can do.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Understanding Racism - Catchphrase Is Educational

Last night I had one of the most glamorous evenings of my miniature life - I sat in jogging bottoms and a vest eating chocolate buttercream icing out of a tub, watching Catchphrase and then Family Fortunes. Bliss. I somehow managed to enjoy my evening despite the sensation of my teeth and brain simultaneously rotting away in my head.

I also learnt something about the human race - I learnt we are different and that some people's brains simply see the world in different colours, sizes and patterns to other people.

I love Catchphrase - I think it's a wonderful lateral thinking challenge. Perhaps we could even call it the predecessor to Sudoko in cajoling the masses into thinking they're intellectually superior because they are enjoying mental agility.

I love Mr Chips - I think he does his best with some pretty poor animation techniques to inject some personality into a show that seems to comprise mainly of contestants at mismatched height and awful shirt & tie combinations.

I also love the way it teaches you that some people think very differently to you but it doesn't make you or them a bad person. Sometimes, people just don't see what you can see. It will make you angry, it will leave you screaming at the TV...


While you're screaming your sage wisdom at the goggle box, Julie from somewhere where going on Catchphrase is deemed exciting, is staring embarssed at the massive screen repeating -

"Men bounce?" "Band leap?" "LEAP OF FAITH??" "Wagon dance" "Wagon band!" "On the band wagon?" "Off the band wagon?"

"JUMPING ON THE BANDWAGON!!!" You chime in helpfully... how has she not got this? How has her mouth come out with all those different options, but not the blindingly obvious phrase you've been chewing into your pillow for the last minute.

"Cart Music...? Jumping on the music cart...? Flamenco truck...? Scaling the horizon...?"

By now, even poor old Roy has exhausted his supply of "It's good but it's not right.", "It's close but it's not right!", "Keeee-eeeep guessing!" and has had to move on to taking a stricter line with poor Julie from the inside of a cardboard box.

"That's not a phrase Julie."He says politely as you watch the poor man's career evaluation flicker behind his eyes like the saddest Generation Game prize procession ever.

"Do you know what is a phrase?" You think, as you clench your bum cheeks to try and stop yourself farting out "Jumping On The Bandwagon" in time with the cheerful music blasting through the studio. "Jumping on the bandwagon is a phrase... Julie, did you know that? Julie - Jumping on the bandwagon is a phrase that indicates you are joining a craze. For example they might say, Laura wanted to kill Julie - she was jumping on the bandwagon with the studio audience. Now do you see? Why don't you say the words Jumping On The Bandwagon and then the whole matter will be resolved?"

But Julie doesn't say Jumping On The Bandwagon... £300 slips through her desperate fingers. The tension is incredible. Is she just going to take her own life when Roy tells her how close she came? Will she just literally die through sheer stupidity? Will she cry and beg to be forgiven as family and friends file past her spitting on her shoes?

She does none of this! Barely even a flicker of emotion from her as her monstrous faux pas is revealed. She's already limbering up for the next catchphrase and a chance to beat Steve from Worcester to the grainy holiday we saw at the beginning. Incredible.

How does she not care? How did she not get it? You're at home stuck to the wall where you've climbed in a nervous fervour trying to make her say the words 'Jumping On The Bandwagon'. You sit there - not sure what to do, like a lover at the end of some terrible sex where your elusive climax has just been glossed over as your partner lights up and smugly enjoys the afterglow. Then, slowly, as the cold dissatisfaction of loathing creeps over you, you realise - people are different.

Some people just don't think like you. It's not that you're superior, because you certainly didn't get "Bell Bottoms" from that frankly disturbing cartoon of the yellow cheeked boys. You're just different, and that's the way it's always going to be. The best you can do is just get over it....

...until Family Fortunes starts in 4 minutes and you simply cannot comprehend for the life of you why no one in the Johnson family is forthcoming with the blindingly obvious answer to Things You Might Pull.


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

15 Reasons Finding A Grey Hair Isn't The End Of The World

1. It is, really, only one hair - which in the grand scheme of things is not important. It's not even worth worrying about. It turns out I have 114,528 other hairs which are brown, and so this one grey hair is definitely insignificant in the grand scheme of things. It's barely even worth thinking about really, if you think about it. So what if 0.0008731% of the hairs on my head are grey? Only a fool would put any energy or time into worrying about such miniscule issues.

2. This could be the beginning of an incredible transformation into a Cruella DeVille type figure where I get a funky patch of white hair instead of going all over grey. This is the perfect opportunity to find out whether I'm inherently evil, and whether I should be scheming instead of thinking up jokes.

3. I now have a picture of myself up behind the counter in every Boots store in London (grey hair not visible). In my quest to find a mate, this might make things easier as I am casting my net to a wider audience. In retrospect, storming into the hair dye aisle and painting "Follicles Be Damned" all over the floor in Garnier Nutrisse may have been slightly immature but what's done is done and we must look on the bright side.

4. All my years of suffering Davina McCall's incessant blathering to her mother may not have been in vain as I now find myself in a position where I could choose to purchase her product. There is no mention in the advert of how many greys you require before you must join the ranks of the paint heads.

5. If my new grey (I call him Bertram) is to be a permanent and spreading fixture it may be possible, when I choose my next mate, to befriend Courtney Cox and achieve the label of "cougar"". I feel this can only be a positive attribute and will make me wildly attractive to anyone seeking a woman with a slight smell of desperation and ammonia.

6. I can stop worrying about split ends and these mysterious pentapeptides as it's increasingly clear that my head will now look awful whatever I do.

7. Grey is often seen as the colour of wisdom. As I search for my new job it may be possible to look for better positions now such as librarian or dinner lady in which a distinguished head of Bertrams is an essential attribute.

8. I can stop carrying my passport around at all times in case I should want an alcoholic beverage, a cigarette or to prove I'm not a dirty stinking immigrant.

9. Having a grey hair feels significantly better than being a racist. This may be something I'll remind myself of from time to time.

10. Should my hairs ever need to hold an election to decide who is going to be their leader, it will now be very obvious who they should choose as Bertram is distinguished and stands out from the crowd - worthy attributes of a leader. Of course, my hairs will first have to decide whether they are going to have AV or not and this is something that might lead to widespread nosebleeds at the sheer tedium of the whole debate. If the outcome of any election is a Government too desperate to please a whining population into voting to pay them more than do what's right for the majority public, then the election was a waste of time. Why not just stick to one Government and let them U-Turn on policies once every 2 years? It would have the same effect. Bertram would be different. Bertram stands out proudly and is the vice-versa Obama on the America of my scalp. Huzzah for Bertram.

11. Theoretically I have lost weight - which is, of course, a positive for any female in the Western world. Bertram has significantly less melanin in him than the rest of my flock. I am now 8.5 stone minus the weight of Bertram's melanin - making me probably somewhere near a healthy 7st8. This will be of much use to me in my impending acting career as I can now jostle for roles usually taken on by the famous stickle brick in a wig - Renee Zellweger.

12. If this radicalisation of my hair tone continues there's a good chance The Crash Test Dummies will be able to dedicate a verse to me and my incredible body based phenomenon.

13. There is living proof on my head that middle class white girls with a good background, healthy support system and no real issues at all can be stressed too. Stressed to the point of aesthetic depletion I might add. Now please can we have some charities?

14. Waxing the nether regions will no longer feel like a pointless chore given that nobody in their right mind has foraged there for approximately far too long for comfort. I can now tell myself that this is a localised heart attack prevention scheme designed to help me avoid feeling rubbish when I have a squirrel nutkin coloured lady garden. Eventually I'll be able to pack the Veet away and go for a blue rinsed noo-noo but for now I can set aside my own alarming lack of human contact and Brazillian away without considering the deforestation effect it will be having on any tribal inhabitants. Discovering my grey hair has also made it clear that the reason I may have less romantic attention than the average darts player is that I intimate I may have tribes living in my pants.

15. Should I ever need to plead insanity after committing a heinous crime I can submit this blog post, tell them Bertram told me to do it and get of scot free to go and live in a deliciously padded room and pretend to be the Marquis de Sade.

Thank you Bertram.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Weaker Than I Thought

Firstly - an apology to anyone who cared/noticed there was no blog yesterday. There was meant to be a blog yesterday but then I was busy and I wanted to play with my small nephew who is small and my nephew and very lovely. I don't see a lot of him (not because he's that small but just because he's a long away in Somerset and I'm in London). Which is kind of what I wanted to talk to you about, blog folks - by talk to you I obviously mean I will type out some unedited mind-tripe with spelling mistakes galore and you will scan through it to see if I've started being funny again yet or whether I'm still in the middle of a nervous breakdown. Let's find out shall we?

London. What the hell is London? Is London as good as we all seem to think it is? I'm not really sure what I'm doing here if I'm honest and it all feels a little topsy turvy. Last night I shared a bill with 14 OTHER COMEDIANS in Brixton, last week I shared a bill with 19 OTHER COMEDIANS in central London... these are not good conditions for comedy, surely? Tonight I am on a bill with 2 other comedians, in Buckinghamshire, and I have half an hour with which to play around... lovely and delightful! But it is making London and it's terrible cattle-market new act machine seem like a not so good place to ply my trade.

Perhaps I will up sticks and back to the country where I can play with small nephew boy and write books and plays and comedy like a true Bronte sister (with less moors and more high falutin gags) and set up a really lovely comedy gig somewhere else.

Are we sure you have to sit in a slum (sorry Elephant & Castle but you had it coming) and do 4 crap gigs per week to 6 disinterested audience members who've paid £6 for the privilege of watching 19 new comedians trying out crap knob gags and their one topical gag? I'm not slating new comedians here - I'm saying in your first 4 years the scurrying around trying to write original material is fooking difficult when you're also still trying to work out how to do timing, persona and everything else too IN FIVE MINUTES, and so sharing a bill with 19 other people who are in exactly the same boat is often going to make acts seem either outrageously similar or pretty freaking rough round the edges. This state of affairs is neither good for the acts nor the audience.

So perhaps it's time to ship off and set off something really good, something that is good for comedy? Something that at least pays new acts for the trouble they've gone to in getting to the gig. If you're making money (I'm looking at you promoter) and you've considered the act trustworthy enough to delight an audience who you've told are going to have a good time, then you can damn well pay them.

So my fairytale country gig will have maximum 4 acts per night. On their first gig they will get travel expenses, if they do well, they will come back and be paid properly when enough time has passed. If you want comedians to stay happy and to stay good, you have to give them something to work for. I will bake cakes for the comedians and for the audience (the cakes may have a slow release happy pill in them to aid matters as the night progresses...) and we will all be lovely and delightful. Lovely and delightful. Because my life I don't think I can take another painfully quiet new act night where I wonder whether if I scissor kicked the front row to death it would be a quicker way to progress...

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Is It Time?

I went out last night in my home town and had one of those high school movie moments where the geeky kid meets all the guys who were "totally super cool" back in the day. And nowadays they're not super hot or super cool. Neither are you particularly, but you are happy and you don't stack shelves so that's a bonus.

Why did no one make it absolutely crystal clear at school that the grown ups were telling the truth when they said that if you worked hard and had morals you would win eventually? I mean, sure I am about to unemployed and I have less than no money and am still repulsing the opposite sex on a regular basis, BUT, I'm quite happy about it.

What a victory for the school nobody.