Just get the fuck on with it.

I’ve done it again. I abandoned the blog for months and expect you still to be here when I come slithering back, seeking your approval. I have 44 YES FORTY FOUR draft blog posts on the go, full of funny things and anecdotes and embellished stories that will sadly never see the light of day.

Here for your enjoyment, is a draft* I started at the end of January during my travels to the Trumpnited States of Trumpmerica. Boy oh boy did we have fun. A funny thing happened in New York, which at the time didn’t seem in the least bit funny.

So pull up a chair, light that crack pipe, and read on…

It’s written in present tense, for clarification, even though it’s now weeks later.


We’re in New York at the moment enjoying a few days much needed R & R. (Actually we’re not now – we’ve been home for about six weeks. See * above)

As an aside, let me just say I’ve never stayed in a hotel room which necessitates the wearing of a hat in bed. This is due to the bed’s proximity to a window. A window which appears to be secured in its frame with sellotape and has massive gaps which provide not so much ventilation as a hair drying facility. Seriously. It’s Baltic.

Haven’t complained, obviously. The last time I was in New York I asked the concierge for my bag which was being stored while I wandered round for a last ogle at the skyline. You know that thing where they say it’s not WHAT you say but more HOW you say it? Well I think that applies here. The concierge put both hands up towards me and stated “Ma’am I’m gonna have to ask you to calm down“. WHATTHEFUCK? This made me apoplectic with rage! Calm down? Since when did telling someone to calm down ever cause them to calm down? Not on my watch.

And that, my friends, is the reason why I’m not willing to complain about the shoogly window (Les gave it a poke with her finger last night and I swear to god if it hadn’t been for the fact that we’re on a high floor and the air pressure was different outside thereby creating a vacuum (not scientifically proven) it would’ve clattered down on to a hapless New York pedestrian’s head and I’d be banged up in the state penitentiary looking at a ten year stretch without my HRT patches instead of eating my way round the USA) I can only assume that to the everyday New Yorker I sound like I’m perpetually  angry, hence the frankly unwarranted “Ma’am i’m gonna have to ask you to calm down” Actually I am perpetually angry come to think of it.I’m full of righteous indignation now, but I can’t remember why. It’s just my default state.

I won’t divulge the name of aforementioned hotel but it’s named after a New York river. For argument’s sake let’s call it the Fudson…

To my story: we went to the cinema last night to escape the extreme weather. We landed in NYC just as a severe weather warning was in place. Typical. Deciding the cinema would be a good use of time we battled the macro cyclone to the nearest picture house. En route, and having eaten our way round lower Manhattan earlier that day we stopped by the supermarket for some juice. Stick with it; this is relevant information.

Feeling like native New Yorkers (twenty five, thirty five, hello baby New York City giiiiirl in the wise words of seventies singing scamps Odyssey) we fought the inclement weather, me in my two coats and weather inappropriate footwear, to the local cinema, to see Manchester by the Sea if you must know. I was thirsty as buggery having eaten my body weight in crisps earlier so was very much looking forward to the juice as mentioned above.

Divesting myself of my two sodden coats I sat my bottle of juice on my seat together with a chocolate muffin the size of my head. My side arses must’ve caught the bottle of juice and sent it skittering to the floor and thence rolling down the incline of the cinema floor towards the front where the screen lives.  In complete darkness. As the film was about to start, I whimpered and looked at Les like it was her fault. It didn’t look like Les wanted to attempt to retrieve it so I humphed out with my iPhone on torch mode looking for it. Two dollars fifty that juice cost me – I’ll be damned if I was giving it up, and anyway a Pavlovian response had kicked in and I was suddenly convinced I was going to DIE of thirst. My tongue stuck to the roof of my stupid mouth and my lips to my teeth.

About three rows down a couple were sitting right in the middle of the row, looking like they might have information about my bottle of juice. I accosted them, iPhone torch shining in their eyes:

“Excuse me this might sound like a funny question but my juice rolled down the aisle and I wondered if you’d maybe seen it. I was really looking forward to that juice too” I added, for effect, in case they had my juice and were planning on drinking it, the thieving bastards.

It’s a good job I’ve never been called for jury duty isn’t it? I’m a bit overzealous about finding someone guilty before they’ve been proved innocent. Being American, they probably didn’t understand a word I just said and the girl clung on a bit tighter to her handbag as if I was about to wrestle it from her. ‘Excuse me?” said the bloke, with a rising inflection at the end, as if he couldn’t believe his ears.  “My juice. My bottle of juice. It rolled down the aisle when I was taking my coats off. I just wondered if you’d seen it. It’s just that I’m really thirsty and was looking forward to it”. “Ummm no. Sorry. But if I see it I’ll let you know” and with that I was summarily dismissed. I thought it was a reasonable enough question, but don’t rely on me for rational thinking. Les had slunk (slank?) so far down her chair she’d practically rolled down the aisle after my runaway juice.

Anyway, happy ending! After a thorough search of the seven rows in front of us, my juice was found just two rows in front of us hahahahahaha. Ah. Funny story.

In other news, Les says I’m selfish and lazy or not blurting out a book and making us rich. I’ve been flirting with a few ideas. They say you should write about what you know, so I’m thinking procrastination. I’m currently procrastinating about my dissertation which is due on 21st April. I should be doing my literature review now, yet here I am, seeking your approval by oversharing. And we all know that procrastination doth butter no parsnips. (I learned that phrase this week and love it).

I’ve spent more time complaining and moaning about the dissertation than I have actually working on it. I’m sick of saying dissertation, and am pretty sure everybody who knows me is equally sick of hearing it. I need to call it something else. I’m working on my norkfangle.

So far, I have a title for my self-help, motivational book – Just Get The Fuck On With It. That’s all I have. I need to think about some kind of framework to hang it off. Some new age mumbo jumbo that I’ll be feted for like some kinda genius. A motivational guru if you will. I visualise myself bouncing on stage with a headset shouting “JUST GET THE FUCK ON WITH IT GUYS! AM I RIGHT?! GET. THE. FUCK. ON. WITH. IT!” and everyone will hoot and holler and generally get the fuck on with it.

Anyway, as I say, work in progress. I’m just running it up the flagpole to see who salutes it. Feel free to slide into my comments or PMs with your ideas for just getting the fuck on with it. I could use you as a case study eg:

“Here’s Joanna. Joanna was a woman going nowhere until she discovered the secret of just getting the fuck on with it! Here – look at Joanna in her active wear just getting the fuck on with it at the gym! And here she is with her fifty quid Moleskine notebook that she’s pimped the fuck out of and turned into a wanky bullet journal so she can sort the fuck out of her life and just get the fuck on with it! Go Joanna!”

Ha. Suddenly my laptop feels really hot with all this just getting the fuck on with it, so I’m off to just get the fuck on with that bar of chocolate in the fridge.

There’s aaaa plaaaace for uuuuus…

Forgive me for speaking kinda ill of the dead, but I have lived my fifty odd years thinking Leonard Cohen was Leonard Bernstein. 

I can’t explain this. I have literally no awareness of L Cohen’s oeuvre,  except for that Hallelujah dirge that every X Factor contestant in the world has covered, most of which were on the poorer side of acceptable, to paraphrase a lecturer’s feedback about the quality of a video I submitted for an assessment. The swine! I still passed on the acceptable side of acceptable,  so I won’t waste my time ruminating on that comment (I totally will, and indeed have. And will continue to do). 

I know it sounds like I’ve been living under a rock re Cohen.  As I said, I can’t explain this. I was brought up on a diet of chips and Frank Sinatra. Does that go some way to explain it? 

I’ve spent my adult life with a Bernstein brainworm every time I hear the name Leonard Cohen:

”  There’s aaaa place for uuuuus / somewheeeeere a place for uuuuuus “

Furthermore, and to add insult to injury, Leonard Cohen was on my list of people-I-thought-were-already-dead. This is a worrying phenomenon. I even see people in the street and think ‘Shiiiiit. That’s freaky. I thought they died’ 

What IS that all about? Is this a common phenomenon – confusing people with other people, dead and alive? The older I get, the stranger my mind becomes. 

In a completely off-topic closing topic, can we talk about train etiquette? Here are my observations and comments on this important matter:

Do not purse your lips at me when I join the train at Lockerbie and you’ve been on the train, bleary eyed  since Manchester enjoying the run of your forward facing seat, table, power point, and window. Tough shit, sista. I’ve got a booked seat at this table *waves ticket* and I’m not afraid to exercise my right to use it. And you can remove your be-popsocked feet from the chair opposite while you’re at it. I’ve no desire to experience them. 
Have a lovely Saturday and don’t worry about the Trump thing. I keep trying to imagine him in the Oval Office and I get a vision of Foghorn Leghorn, who actually would, IMHO, be a more worthy president. 

Half ottoman oooooh. 

I’ve missed the blog. I’ve been kinda busy adulting on another website for the furtherance of my education. 

As has been clearly demonstrated throughout my life (I offer no examples – use your imagination or indeed memory) I have zero morals so am more than happy to pimp out my efforts here in an attempt to boost my stats in Google Analytics, which I can be found obsessing over at every opportunity, in much the same way a man of a certain age can be found obsessing over the Screwfix Direct catalogue on a weekend. Oh and don’t just open the bloody website and shut it again FFS because my bounce rate is giving me the screaming abdabs as it is, getting all up in my grill with its 80% shite. 

Nothing much has changed since my last blog. Got a new mattress. And a whole new bed to go underneath it in fact, which we were encouraged to customise (don’t give me choices! Just give me a bloody bed!) so plumped for the half ottoman, which sounds like an accidental Partridge in many ways. “I plumped for the half ottoman. A-haa!” 

Every time I say ottoman I have to recreate the Chewin’ the Fat (or is it Still Game?) ‘ooooh ottoman’ thing, which, if you’re not Scottish will require elucidation but I’m buggered if I can find it on YouTube. Feel free to assist in this endeavour. 

Being the owner of a half ottoman (oooh half ottoman) is not without its problems. Having forgotten we actually had it for the first two weeks I then spent the next two demonstrating it to all and sundry, sometimes with Mrs B still in the actual bed, much to her surprise, as it folded her back on herself into an enforced yoga pose I like to call ‘the reverse arse over tit’

Eventually I moved all the duvet covers and sheets into said half ottoman (oooh etc), having had the lifehack brainwave to pop each duvet cover, matching pillowcases and a sheet into a pillowcase from the same set, much to the youngest’s amusement on being treated to a demo of the half ottoman (oooh etc oh shut up Lindsey it’s just annoying now):

“That’s a nifty trick with your duvet covers! How long have you been doing that?”

“That? Oh forever. It keeps them all together so it saves rummaging for the matching pillowcases. S’good innit?”

*snorts derisively*”you’re a bloody liar. You just saw that on Pinterest and literally just started doing it. That’ll last five minutes”

*rumbled* “yep you’re right. It’s bugging me already. I’ll never do it again”

So the half ottoman (sigh) is now populated with a big mess of duvet covers (assorted sizes) pillowcases (some of dubious age and provenance), mattress covers, electrical blankets (I’m 55 ffs. I feel the cold*) and sheets (scratchy ikea polyester to 50000000 thread Egyptian cotton). 

Yet I can still be found staring crabbitly into the erstwhile linen cupboard looking for a change of bedding bellowing “WHERE ARE ALL THE FUCKING SHEETS?!”

Old habits die hard. 

*saying “I’m 55!” has become my go-to excuse for a range of things these days including “I’m 55!” when somebody rhetorically asks if I really know everybody  in Dumfries as I say hello to everyone I meet. I’m 55; I’ve lived here all my life. I’ve either snogged them, married them, been drunk with them, been to school with them, worked with them or…well…I refer you back to the second paragraph of this blog re morals. 

Peace out. 

That time we went dahn sarf.

As is my usual M.O, this has been written over several days and weeks and is therefore confusing. It’ll feel a bit like time travel. It’ll feel like you’ve flitted  back and forth through your wardrobe to Narnia half a dozen times. I apologise in advance. Just go with it. I’m not saying it’s worth it but it’ll at least give you a reason to stare at your phone for a few minutes thus avoiding human contact.

Tuesday (Now two weeks ago, FFS!)

We’re just back from a long weekend dahn sarf looking at art and eating. I love the idea of an art gallery or museum but find them overstimulating and can only tolerate about an hour of going ooh that’s lovely or worra load of old shit before curling my lip, yawning, needing the toilet and heading giftshopward or caféward.

The giftshop at Tate Modern however yielded a lovely read in the shape of a biography of Grayson Perry. I’m a huge Grayson fan and feel like we’d get on like a house on fire and become great friends. I also think that about Johnathan Ross. I had a Twitter exchange with him in the days when only six folk had Twitter accounts and we all spoke to each other and Johnathan and I regularly (once) batted witty repartee back and forward.

Grayson’s biography is what I’d describe as a charming book thus far (I’m only at the prologue!) and captures the zeitgeist of  growing up in the sixties very well in my snooty opinion.  It’s made me yearn for the Encyclopaedic Books of Knowledge that alphabetically lined a white gloss painted shelf in our living room when I was wee. I can still smell that shelf. I devoured the books and used to read them for fun. I wasn’t like the other girls. I was bookish. They suited my enquiring mind perfectly. I even learned the history and rules of lawn tennis from those books. That stood me in good stead, didn’t it? I’m a lardy couch potato. I’ve never used a tennis racquet in anger, or participated in any competitive sport, but never say never. Although I clearly just did. Three times.

While we’re loosely on the subject of my expert theoretical knowledge of tennis, there follows a summary of the highlights of our long weekend, set against the background of tennis match scoring.

But first some context. Prior to the London trip, in my usual penny wise/pounds foolish style, I cashed in my Tesco Clubcard points and exchanged same for 30 quids worth of Zizzi restaurant vouchers. I don’t know why I did that; I don’t like chain faux Italian restos. It’s just carbs innit? There’s nae meat. Regardless, armed with my thirty quid worth of Zizzi vouchers, off we went to London. First class if you please! I had gin at 1pm! Then felt hungover by Birmingham.

Arrived at the hotel at teatime, mysteriously starving despite having eaten everything off the trolley on the First Class Virgin carriage, and with the Zizzi vouchers burning a hole in my pocket, we set off smugly to Zizzi. I know, I know – all the lovely places in London to eat and we went to Zizzi. But HELLO. VOUCHER. Stereotypical Scots innit? But I’m happy to throw a hundred quid upwards at perfume and snake oil face creams. It’s ridiculous. 

So in to Zizzi we go, and OF COURSE sat behind the woman with the loudest laugh on the planet. Nevertheless, on we ploughed through the menu. We each ordered some overpriced carbs – me tortellini, she a weird gigantopizza – together with some extravagant cocktails and a lemony dessert that tasted of disappointment and was so tart it made my face go inside out, much to Mrs T’s annoyance every time I ate a spoonful. “Don’t eat it then!” But by Christ I was determined to eat it, mainly because my tortellini amounted to five pieces and I’d scoffed it in about three minutes, after which I got the terrible pizza horn but couldn’t have a bit of Mrs T’s because it had anchovies on it.

The bill duly came, not that I was worried because I was armed with thirty quid of Zizzi vouchers! Ha! Yes! I’m triumphant! I’ve thirty quid of vouchers for Zizzi! Take that London!

My jubilation was interrupted by the waiter:

“these vouchers are for Pizza Express”

Me: (thinking everyone’s a bloody comedian) “Hahahahaha!”

Waiter: “No. They are. Look”

And sure as a cat’s a hairy beast the vouchers were in actual fact for Pizza shitting Express.

Fifty quid for a mountain of fucking carbs and two desserts of disappointment.

Me, whining:”But…but…I don’t like Pizza Express”

Score: Fifteen Love London.

Wednesday. With carb bloat. 

Off to the V&A today to see the Undressed exhibition armed with our two for one voucher. (Again, penny wise pounds foolish). I hadn’t checked the weather so sailed out on to the streets of London in Converse and a short sleeve summer frock only to find that it was raining. Heavily.

Mrs T: Did you bring a brolly?

Me: Eh no. I didn’t even bring a jacket. 

Mrs T: You want me to go back and get your jacket? 

Me: Yes please

*interval while jacket is retrieved*

Me: Thanks. 

*dons jacket. Hood won’t stay up. Gets crabbit*

Me: Actually I kinda wish I had my brolly. 

Mrs T: you want me to go back for it?

Me: Yes. Yes I do. That would be lovely of you. I’ll sit in that nice dry cafe over there and have a cappuccino. 

*interval while brolly is fetched*

*Mrs T returns with brolly*

Me: Thank you but the rain’s stopped. 

Score:Thirty Love London

*Schlep to tube station*

Me:You got the Oyster cards?

Mrs T, clutching at pockets:  Oops. They’re in my other shirt. 

Me: Oh for fucksake. 

*Cough up tube fares*

Arrive at V&A

Me: Good morning my good man. We’re here to see this fancy exhibition about pants. I think you’ll find we only need pay entrance fee for one since we have this two for one voucher we cleverly downloaded off my internet. 

It’s here somewhere…

*Rummage in handbag…*

*Further rummage…beads of sweat forming on top lip*

*Look accusingly at Mrs T*

Me: Did you…

Mrs T: Eh no. You had it. Did you pick it up off the table in the room? 

Me: No. No I didn’t. 

Forty Love London, you bastard. 

Wednesday

In a state of post holiday bewilderment I spent today thinking a) it was Monday and b) wondering why I didn’t see any evidence of that purveyor of mediocre baked goods Gregg’s in London.

We’ve decided we need to lose weight. The taller and therefore relatively and arguably less rotund Mrs T has purchased a bike. The courier won’t deliver it here for some reason which is insane. We’re not in Macchu Picchu. The bike, when it arrives, has only three gears. “I’m 43; I’ve no need for a bike with twenty odd gears. I wouldn’t know what to do with them all”. This whilst poking down a Cornetto. 

Saturday

Woke up at 4am annoyed about sweet potato and the pointlessness of it. 

Whilst reading an article on incest today ( I didn’t seek it out; I came across it during one of those down the rabbit hole internet reading sessions that you start by googling something dull like ingrown toenail treatment and end up succumbing to clickbait with titles like I gave birth to a giraffe) I encountered the loveliest new word: consanguineous. I sighed with pleasure when I read it, and tried it out for size a couple of times to a nonplussed Tucker (who incidentally has taken up a delightful hobby – eating Audrey’s (the cat) meat and her shit. Literally eating cat shit. I can barely look at him.

 I can’t wait for an occasion where i can use the word consanguineous. I might have to resort to bringing up the subject of incest at some point. You might want to avoid me for a few weeks until I’ve moved on to another word.

I got bored with the tennis scoring thing you’ll notice. 

Still. Consanguineous. Phwoar.

Tigerbaps’ Ten T’internet Tips. 

1. Don’t believe everything you read on the Internet – especially if you’re consulting Dr Google. You probably don’t have cholera or consumption. 

2. One is not, as far as I’m aware, required by law to like or comment on every single bloody Facebook post or wish every bugger happy birthday. Nor is it a crime if someone i.e. me doesn’t reply to your comment. I have a job that requires my full attention between roughly 9am and 5pm which means that I’ll  miss that picture of your sandwich you posted at 1pm. But that’s okay because repeat after me FACEBOOK IS NOT REAL LIFE. 

3. Never EVER read the comments on the Guardian website especially if they’re under any vaguely political article. The people who leave such comments are cobbled together from the bits left over when Jebus made the world or whatever. They’re like malware on your laptop. The purpose of their existence is merely to make you despair at life and want to move to the Bladerunner Off-World Colonies without so much as a lifetime supply of Heinz Tomato Soup. 

4. There is much fun to be had by Internet shopping. By all means send for that blush pink sateen bomber jacket but don’t come crying to me when it arrives and you try it on while sucking in your stomach and you resemble an inflated whale bladder. It’ll end in tears;  a messy fankle of fifth-generation Jiffy bags and sellotape and a trip to the Post Office – and nobody I repeat nobody needs that kind of negativity in their life. Step away from the ASOS sale, girlfriend. 

5. Never attempt a Nigella Lawson recipe you find online. I’ve made her “Aunt Lily’s Scones” and I doubt the existence of an Aunt Lily, whose scones leave a soapy aftertaste. Lawson is just an advanced artificial intelligence being –  a hoax to distract us from the real issues like Brexit, Dutch Elm Disease, Acid Rain and Bowie’s death. She’s the Royal Wedding of the Internet – popping up when the peasants are revolting. 

6. Instagram isn’t real either. OBVIOUSLY I’m not going to post an unfiltered picture of me legs akimbo in my dressing gown, picking my toenails while watching Big Brother. And neither will anybody else. Their lives are not fabulous and that’s not their real house – it’s a pretend kitchen in Homebase that they’ve strategically placed themselves in and taken a picture of themselves chopping a plastic carrot, smiling. Just like you, they’re firing off a request for a repeat Prozac prescription as we speak and trying desperately to guess their partner’s email password in the hope that they can uncover some infidelity and go “SEE?! I BLOODY KNEW IT! BASTARD!” and skip off into the sunset with Shayne the fitness instructor with buttocks you could crack walnuts on. 

7. Google (with the exception of Dr Google -see 1 above) is your friend. A simple googling of a thing will prevent your Facebook friends from rolling their eyes every time you share a “Facebook will steal your soul unless you copy and paste this status to your wall and sit in a bath of baked beans for a fortnight”

8. As soon as you read this, nominate a person, preferably a worldly one with a black heart like yours who’s been around the block a few times and is on the most part unshockable, and give that bitch a key to your home and the unlock codes to your iDevices, and strict instructions to delete your browsing history/bookmarks/shortcuts  in the event of your death – even if it means they have to barge through POLICE LINE DO NOT CROSS tape to get in. Don’t be that guy whose virtual legacy is more embarrassing than that time you highfived your doctor when it turns out her hand was only on its way to scratching her nose (for example). 

9. Actually, as a postscript to number 8 above, just get them to burn your house down, especially if following on from number 2 above you have Tesco Bags For Life full of gimp masks and French Maids’ outfits. 

10. If like me this is your life: 

Remember you can simply do Edit/Mark all/ Mark as Read. Boom. You’re welcome. 

I’d insert my favourite gif here of Obama doing a mic drop but I’m afraid there’s a cup of tea here with my name on it. 

Okay it doesn’t technically have my name on it – it says coffee slut which is close enough. 

What I did(n’t do) on my holidays. 

I sat down to bash out a blog post but I’ll be buggered if I can remember what I was going to say. I had something hilarious in my mind earlier while talking to Tucker but it’s gone now. I doubt it would’ve been hilarious anyway. Mildly amusing at best probably. 

I’m in a bit of a state of panic due to the fact that it’s bloody Saturday already. I’ve been off this week but have a list of life admin chores I must get through, one of which is to investigate the remote possibility that I might actually be due millions of pounds in PPI claims. Another tiresome chore is to move some stuff from one room to another, which in this heat is trickier than it sounds motivation wise. 

So it’s now bloody Saturday and I’ve tackled neither of the aforementioned chores, nor indeed any of the rest. I did manage to list some stuff on eBay but somehow cocked up the bid starting price and some cocky fucker (for want of a better word) had the barefaced audacity to do a “Buy it Now” for 99p for a dress which cost me thirty quid and I never wore #dontyoujudgeme. I cancelled her order (she was RAGING) and refunded her 99p plus postage but the whole affair still managed to piss on my Wednesday chips and I fantasised about shoving her down a flight of stairs which I’ll admit is an overreaction but July has been a cruel month so far in lots of ways so my overreaction is thereby justified and I’ll thank you to keep your opinions to yourself. 

In between angst ridden naps – I’ve not been sleeping well and what little sleep I get is occupied with stress dreams about being late (ugh!) for things, not having the right clothes to wear and showering in public – I’ve managed to complete a couple of sewing projects in my usual ‘och that’ll dae!’ modus operandi. I ‘completed’ a dressing gown for Mrs Baps in a rather lovely red Paisley pattern silky fabric which I consign to the bowels of hell for being the slippiest bastard known to man and an absolute shithouse to get through a sewing machine. The dressing gown pattern claimed to be a ‘Complete this project in two hours!!!’ affair but due to the slippery bastard fabric it took me the best part of three weeks. Mrs B is wearing it though and claims to love it but I’ve seen the look of fear and resignation on her face, which is a tricksy mixture of emotions to express facially. It looks a bit like this. 


Pop a wee dark haired wig and a badly made red Paisley dressing gown on that and it’s a dead ringer for Mrs B. 

I’ve kinda lost my blogging mojo by the way. You have noticed the lack of output if you’re a regular reader. I just dried up blog content wise and I don’t know how to get bemoistened blog content wise again. 

On a serious note I did want to acknowledge the death of Simon Bishop though. Simon was one of my early Twitter friends in the early days of Twitter before it got nasty and troll-filled and when there were only like six people tweeting and who all said goodnight to each other . Simon was a one-off. A marvellous human being loved by everyone who met him but who couldn’t seem to love himself. Top bloke. Here, have this,  written by NPR commentator Aaron Freeman. 

You want a physicist to speak at your funeral. You want the physicist to talk to your grieving family about the conservation of energy, so they will understand that your energy has not died. You want the physicist to remind your sobbing mother about the first law of thermodynamics; that no energy gets created in the universe, and none is destroyed. You want your mother to know that all your energy, every vibration, every Btu of heat, every wave of every particle that was her beloved child remains with her in this world. You want the physicist to tell your weeping father that amid energies of the cosmos, you gave as good as you got.

And at one point you’d hope that the physicist would step down from the pulpit and walk to your brokenhearted spouse there in the pew and tell him/her that all the photons that ever bounced off your face, all the particles whose paths were interrupted by your smile, by the touch of your hair, hundreds of trillions of particles, have raced off like children, their ways forever changed by you. And as your widow rocks in the arms of a loving family, may the physicist let him/her know that all the photons that bounced from you were gathered in the particle detectors that are her/his eyes, that those photons created within her/him constellations of electromagnetically charged neurons whose energy will go on forever.
And the physicist will remind the congregation of how much of all our energy is given off as heat. There may be a few fanning themselves with their programs as he says it. And he will tell them that the warmth that flowed through you in life is still here, still part of all that we are, even as we who mourn continue the heat of our own lives.
And you’ll want the physicist to explain to those who loved you that they need not have faith; indeed, they should not have faith. Let them know that they can measure, that scientists have measured precisely the conservation of energy and found it accurate, verifiable and consistent across space and time. You can hope your family will examine the evidence and satisfy themselves that the science is sound and that they’ll be comforted to know your energy’s still around. According to the law of the conservation of energy, not a bit of you is gone; you’re just less orderly.

(Copyright 2005, NPR.org)

Peace Out. 

It’s hot, innit?

I’ve the fan on. It’s so bloody hot!

I was asked if I had a bucket list at the weekend.  I couldn’t remember if I did – or if I did have one I’ve forgotten what was on it. The only thing that blurts forth from my mouth when asked about a bucket list is ‘Climb Everest!’and my reply this time was no exception. I blurted out ‘Climb Everest!’ through a mouthful of sausage roll and glass of wine in hand, contemplating a fag. I doubt the irony of that blurting was lost on anyone. I get bored walking up a flight of stairs and am built for comfort rather than any kind of athletic, heart quickening activity. 

No I can’t think of a single thing that I’d have on a bucket list. I certainly don’t have a yen for swimming with bloody dolphins. I always thought that was a weird thing to do.  They’re just laughing at us from their moral high ground and relatively large cerebellum despite their relatively small hippocampus. They don’t want to swim with us. 

Bucket list things should surely take the form of difficult things that require some effort. Things that would need a substantial lottery win to fund – not things that you could only be arsed to do if you knew your time on the planet was suddenly limited. 

I can’t think of a single thing. Except climb Everest. 

In other news, remember the drive-by teabagging of yesteryear? Well now I’ve been the victim of an aspiring Banksy. I discovered it during my morning parish inspection with a crabbit Tucker. My garage wall has been graffitied. It’s not likely to attract the erection of a brown tourist sign so don’t get excited and rush to view it. It’s a bit of a “cock and balls” affair accompanied by some disparaging remarks about people from Lincluden. I was forced to report it to the authorities. 

“It’s averagely offensive”

“What do you mean?”

“The graffiti. It’s averagely offensive”

“Is it racist?”

“Nnnnooooo”

“What does it say?”

“It’s a rude comment about a scheme at the other side of town and the people who reside there, accompanied by a crude cock and balls”

“How big is it?”

“Quite big. The graffiti I mean; not the penis. I’ve no recent frame of reference for that”

“I’ll pass it to your local constabulary. They’ll be in touch”

Oh super. I’ve to go through all this again.  I’ve never had occasion to say “cock and balls” to a police officer before and I hope I never need to again. In fact I’ve never had reason to say “cock and balls” ever – not even during my foray into Tinder in the days before Mrs Baps came into my life (praise the Lord!) and rescued me from a life of disastrous dates and loneliness. 

It would have been less embarrassing all round if I’d just sent the authorities a snapchat of the offending “mural”. Surely Police Scotland have Snapchat? They’re always cavorting around doing the Running Man dance or singing I Will Survive in karaoke bars – both perfectly snapchattable activities I would have thought. 

Crimplene trousers and gingerbread.

I had two great Eureka moments tonight whilst buttering an oatcake.

1 – Lifehack: See this spoon?

The corner of the (empty) fag packet is shown for relative size and isn’t a weird “serving suggestion”. The presence of my foot, intruding into the bottom right of the picture and the empty HRT packet at 1 o’clock bear no relevance either, and are merely indicative of my shit photography skills.


Look at the spoon. The handles of this cutlery set (Tesco) to which this spoon belongs is perfectly cylindrical.  Its cylindricality if that’s a word and the fact that it appears to be coated in some NASA developed slippyslidy nano-material render it impossible to hold. Every damn time I use one I’m left wondering if my hand has somehow turned back to front. So, in a fantastic bit of lateral thinking; I’ve decided to launch my own diet cutlery range. Behold the diet-o-spoon! The use of the diet-o-spoon results in only half the foodstuff actually making it to the mouth of the rotund user. The tagline for this wonderful piece of entrepreneurial brilliance on my part is “There’s many a slip twixt spoon and lip with the diet-o-spoon!” I’m applying for Dragons’ Den.

My second Eureka moment – which coincidentally is NUMBER 2…

2 – Bowel trouble? Struggling to “go”? Eat dog food! Why’s no-one thought of that before? Dogs eat dog food and they appear to have NO BOWEL TROUBLES WHATSOEVER, do they? They can more or less go on command.

I’m a bloody genius.
In a sentence that’s in no way related to number 2 above, (BOOM! A triple entendre!) I’ve spent the last hour clearing up my inbox. Inspired by this wonderful blog post by my friend Eileen I decided to start with a virtual clear out, so I’m deleting like a madwoman and unsubscribing from all the emails with their tempting offers. I seem to get a lot of offers of bargain trainers. Trainers? What do I want with trainers?! I’m 54 for chrissake! I can hardly drag the wheely bin up the drive on bin night in my Clarks slippers, never mind jog or run in trainers. Uninterestingly, I remember the days when trainers were called training shoes and you whitened them with that stuff that was like a forerunner of Tippex.

I know I’m guilty of wandering down memory lane in the blog and I make no apologies for that, so piss off and read somebody else’s blog. I care not for your negativity. Talking about training shoes has reminded me of the time in Home Economics when we had the How to Wash Clothes week and we were instructed to bring in a pair of jeans for washing. I did think that was a queer request at the time but I did as instructed and took in my brother’s Levis. Imagine my surprise then when literally no-one else in the class took jeans? They took ordinary trousers! Made of Crimplene or some other popular seventies fabric that resisted water anyway and only took five minutes to dry!  I’m sure my brother’s Levis, were that they were alive today, would still be wet.

This memory has unnaturally segued into another memory involving Home Economics –  How to Make Gingerbread week. I fancy that they were preparing us girls for married life which as we all know would involve nothing but copious amounts of Crimplene trouser washing and gingerbread making for our husbands, whether they liked it or not. I accidentally made a gingerbread of biblical proportions which I ate on the way home and was  – to quote my granny – ‘skittered off the face of the earth’ and off school for a week. I still can’t look gingerbread in the face.

PS – I’ve accidentally caught an episode of Eastenders where a strange boy seems to have battered his mother (?) to death with a hockey stick. I’d throw the book at him. Or I’d sentence him to ten years hard labour – crimplene trouser washing and gingerbread eating.

 

Shirt-dress Russian roulette.

Oh! While I’m here I must do my public duty and tell everyone about my phone bill fandango. I never check my phone bill – preferring to bury my head in the sand over such fiscal matters – but earlier this week I phoned EE to upgrade my phone and they pointed out that I’d been charged £1 a week since May 2014 for some “digital service” or other. I didn’t make too much of it on the phone in case it was something embarrassing or indeed dodgy which would of course have been something I’d clicked inadvertently,  or under the guise of “research”…

It turns out that some shyster games provider had been, unbeknownst to me, fleecing me for two years to the tune of £104! EE were very good about it and furnished me with a phone number to cancel this so-called subscription. I stabbed angrily at the keypad and eventually got through to an automated service which probably costs £100 a minute. I got to the bit where you have to bark CANCEL. CANCEL. CAAAANCELLLL! down the phone like a loony and then waited for what seemed like an eternity until the automated voice reluctantly conceded that I’d now been unsubscribed.

Of course this is all well and good but there remained the problem of the £104 of my money they’d pilfered. I emailed the bastards and a volley of emails ensued which included my use of phrases like “I’m 54; what would I want with a subscription to online games?” and “…underhand marketing tactics” and made some empty threats about what I’d do if I didn’t receive a full refund within 24 hours good day to you sire which I like to think scared them into a refund. Of £3.92. Quite how they arrived at this frankly arbitrary sum is beyond my ken, so I declined their generous offer. After another couple of volleys it was game, set and match to me, kinda. They offered me £59 and I grudgingly accepted because well that’s about the price of a pair of shoes, right? I’m no fool. The thing is, I never know how to behave when a hostile situation is resolved to the satisfaction of both parties, but I think this look sums it up nicely:

While my tomahawk runneth red, I took it upon myself to email the church next door about the Wednesday night mass illegal u-turn manoeuvre that takes place on the road right outside my door which is clearly part of a cycle route so for cyclists and pedestrians only. I spend my Wednesday evenings twitching the Venetian blinds to catch the buggers in flagrante, as it were.

So, fired up from the run-in with the hustlers at B!Game, I spent an hour composing an unnecessarily formal  – bordering on Shakespearean – email, which is a strange mixture of old and new, verily. It seems to have been resolved satisfactorily, and neighbourly harmony has been restored.

But I’ll be watching. Don’t think I won’t.

PS Check your phone number here to see if you too are being fleeced by the buggers at B!Game.

PPS I didn’t buy shoes with the money; I bought a denim frock which albeit rather snug, is quite flattering. I try to avoid button-up clothing after the accidental Judy Finnigan I once performed while gallumphing up the Loreburne Centre one busy lunchtime whilst wearing a shirt with straining buttons so I’ll be playing shirt-dress roulette every time I wear the new frock, but hey ho, you only live once as far as I know.

Judy; then and now.

(Pictures courtesy of some shady tabloid. They can sue me if they like. I’ve nae money. I’ve even spent my 59 quid refund).

Sausages are not the only fruit. 

This blog title popped into my head and paraphrases Jeanette Winterson. It bears no relation to the content of this post other than I casually mention sausages once. 

Most of what follows was drafted last weekend, as is customary round these parts.  Well, my parts, to be specific, but please don’t dwell on my parts on a Saturday night when you’re enjoying Eurovision or whatever. Nobody needs a vision of my parts. Partsovision, if you will. Anyway, read on, if you like reading week old shite. 

………………..

Oh christ. I’m sitting here frowning at my laptop in full view of passers-by. I’m meant to be starting this bloody assessment putting the finishing touches to an assessment but had the urge to blog. I’m hoping Mrs ‘Baps turns into the drive any moment now and goes “aww look at her with her massive clever brain beavering away on her assessment”, when in reality I’m ogling overpriced mascara on the Clarins website. 

You didn’t see me, right? Actually she’ll be pleased when she gets here because I’ve sausages on the go, which isn’t a euphemism. She enjoys a sausage, does Mrs Baps. 

Giddy at the thought of pay day, I spent an hour of insomnia last night looking at and coveting ridiculously expensive beauty products I can’t afford and don’t need, including a contouring kit with bronzer and shimmery glittery highlighter, neither of which I would know what to do with. Contouring is a dark art like threading a needle when you’re over 40, or knowing where to use a semicolon. I didn’t buy it thankfully, mainly because you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. Which would be a great name for a beauty salon – The Sow’s Ear. Or maybe for a hipster butcher shop, would that that were a thing. 
So I woke up this morning feeling under the weather, having discovered a new ailment, no doubt another symptom of my advancing years. I can’t lie on my left side in bed due to aches and pains. It’s a real bummer because that’s the side I lie on with the iPad propped up on the bedside cabinet watching Mad Men and eating toast. 

I’ve been thinking it might be a good idea for the NHS to have pretend doctors in GP Surgeries.  Kid-on doctors* Fake doctors. Faux doctors. You know, the kind of doctor that would appease idiots like me who have constant ailments that need ‘looked at’ by a professional.  A kid-on doctor who would just give you a cuddle or  prescribe a boxset binge and a family bag of Maltesers. Or prescribe a fag at the back door and to hell with the naysayers. 

I fancy that the phone call would go thus:

Ring ring

“Hello it’s Li…”

“Hello Lindsey. What can we do for you today?”

“I need to see the doctor. Have you any appointments today”

Receptionist places hand over phone, and  – sotto voce- informs the doctor:

“That’s Lindsey on the phone being all nicey-nicey again”

Real doctor: “What’s wrong with her now for chrissake?”

Receptionist: “Fuck knows. Fuck all probably. Will I put her in with the SPECIAL DOCTOR?”

Doctor: “Aye, wait I’ll ask Babs if she’s free. BARBARA! WHEN YOU’VE FINISHED CLEANING THAT TOILET WE’VE GOT A SPECIAL PATIENT COMING IN. CAN YOU SEE HER?”

Barbara, sighing: “Aye pencil her in for 5 o’clock. I’m sick of this. I’m only on Season 2 of Grey’s Anatomy and chapter 2 of Gynaecology for Dummies. I haven’t even covered that thing where you hit the sweet spot in somebody’s knee with a tiny hammer and their leg shoots up”

Doctor: “Don’t need your life story. Can you see this idiot or not?”

“Aye okay. I’ll fetch ma Marigolds”

“Oh I don’t think you’ll need them. Sounds like a ‘pants-on’ job”

“Well thank the good Lord Harry for that. I’ve mince in the slow cooker for ma tea”

Receptionist – looking perplexed at significance of mince in slow cooker: “Righto Lindsey that’s you in with Dr Barbara at 5”

And so on and so forth. And as “Barbara” has been comedy-cast as a cleaner in this fantasy – let me make myself clear: I’m not knocking cleaning as a profession, before somebody gets uppity and reports me to the Daily Mail or whatever. I’m just jealous of anybody who can clean. I boak if there’s a hair on the dish sponge, which happens more often than you’d think round my gaff. 

 

*For the benefit of our non-Scottish readers and other foreign friends who struggle to understand my native Dumfries ‘patois’; “kid-on” means pretend. 

Enjoy the remainder of your Saturday evening round your parts.