The clusterfuck of life admin, revisited. 

It’s been Procrastination City Arizona here this week, hence the “old newsy” feel of this post – I started it yesterday when my cup overflowed-eth with good humour. Today I could drop-kick Bambi into next week and not give a shit. So here, for what it’s worth, which is shit-all really, is yesterday’s shitty news:

Following an accidental two hour après-tea nap, (a lovely Moroccan lamb dish prepared by Heather, if you must know) I decided, after I’d stared into space, absentmindedly scratching my arse for what felt like an eternity,  and worked out what day/time it was, to tackle the clusterfuck of life admin. 

I moved here 13 months ago, and still haven’t changed my address for everything (except the very legal stuff, in case DVLA, the Police, MI5, GCHQ, yer maw, or the Prime Minister (not entirely who the PM is so kept that vague – I’d be shit at a test for dementia “Who’s the Prime Minister, Lindsey?” “Ummm…BANANA!”) are reading this) (sorry again about all the bracket opening and closing all over the bloody shop – for somebody who has a hairy fit over the wrong use of you and you’re I appear to be very gung-ho about my own grammar in this blog but then again a) I’m typing it on my phone and b) I never said it was good at it so shit off with your judgy-judgy opinions) CLOSE BRACKET CLOSE BRACKET CLOSE BRACKET. There. Shut up. 

Back to the clusterfuck of life admin, if we must. It really is an arsehole of a thing. Every couple of years I drag it all out then get a great big sad and hide it all away again. It drains me of energy, which has been a great excuse for my laziness for a whole raft of essential life skills including:

  • Getting up in the morning unless it’s a Saturday or Sunday, or I’ve a doctor’s appointment for a fresh imaginary ailment.
  • Putting things away. 
  • Making visitors cups of tea.
  • Having visitors at all. 
  • Small talk.
  • Phoning anybody about anything.
  • Sewing that hole in the elbow of my favourite black frock.
  • Posting things if it requires dealing with an actual question-asking person. 
  • Anything else not included above unless it’s to do with fannying around with nail polish or makeup, or napping. I’m good at them. 

This energy draining excuse came about after one of those pointless money-wasting exercises carried out by a previous employer in the name of professional development where you answer various questions about your reactions and feelings to things (a bit like a quiz in the Jackie circa 1969 “how flirty are you?”) then it spits out a forty page report claiming you’re a psychopath and you go “ooooh that’s spooky – that’s me alright!” Of course it’s you, ya fanny, you’ve just answered a million pointless questions about yourself. (Mine said I had a strong moral compass – they must’ve got my answers mixed up with Mother Theresa because I’ve the morals of an alley cat). 

So, drained of energy, I gathered up all the clusterfucky life admin, including a myriad receipts for household appliances long since discarded but not including the stuff I actually need like MOTs, car insurance details and birth certificates. I suspect I shredded them when I had that shredding fetish last year. I find shredding satisfying and dare I say it arousing. Destruction is seductive, don’t you find? I’d be a great arsonist. If I could be arsed. 

I sorted everything into piles – mountains of unopened mail, payslips going back to 2003, (including the mother of all payslips from 2012 which included an enjoyable redundancy payment thank you very much), pension statements from every employer I’ve ever worked for but whose eventual output will just about keep me in Marlboro Lights for a week a year, and an amusing financial report from a financial adviser who offered to conduct a health check into my financial – how should I put this – “affairs”.  I must have the appearance of a woman with an investment portfolio but the smile drained from his face when he realised the extent of my profligacy and lack of retirement planning. I never saw him again. 

The sorting of things into piles took a good hour, at the end of which I stood back, admired my handiwork and skipped to the kitchen for a celebratory hot Ribena, by way of the bedroom where I’d a nice pile of fresh folders and a Sharpie I was saving for just such an occasion. Unfortunately Tucker had decided to have his five minute nightly mental run round the house and ran right through my piles, as it were. It’s all back in the cupboard again. Arson has never seemed so appealing. (Not Tucker, the clusterfuck of life admin. Although I bet roast Tucker would smell oddly appetising). 

Footnote: today’s ailment – Imposter Syndrome. This is an actual thing. I feel like an imposter at everything, including being an adult. Check back for tomorrow’s imaginary ailment. 

Poncy tea and the drive-by teabagging. 

There’s a bewildering array of teas in Tesco these days. I’d occasion to replace some weirdarse tea inadvertently consumed by the Dutch visitors last week which wasn’t actually mine for the consumption. Oops. So off to Tesco, sans carrier bag as usual, despite the million carrier bags assuming the stress position in the kitchen rummage drawer. (Kitchen rummage drawer – Contents: 

  • Bags for Life which never see the inside of a supermarket after their inaugural trip, but remain hopeful that one day they’ll be the proud bearers of Kettle Chips, Maltesers and bags of salad (salad purchased as a decoy in case the doctor catches me with the contraband Good Stuff up the aisles of the Big Tesco)
  • Leaky old batteries. No I don’t know either. 
  • Odd fridge magnets including magnetic Scrabble letters removed from the fridge after I got fed up seeing them rearranged to spell “cock” “tits” “arse” and so on and so forth by less salubrious visitors. 
  • Promotional pens including a Tenalady one which, every time I bring it out, taunts me with a vision of my incontinent future. 
  • Empty lighters, which make me FURIOUS AND STABBY when I really fancy a fag at the back door. 
  • Ventolin inhalers full of dust and crumbs which would kill me in an instant if I ever actually used one. (I know: smoking and asthma is foolish but so is insisting on buying only free range organic chicken then poking down a Gregg’s chicken bake without giving a toot about the provenance of the ersatz chicken contained therein so pipe down ya hypocrites) 
  • Odd tablets, liberated from their packaging, with which I sometimes play Russian Roulette on a Sunday if I’m feeling gloomy. What’s the worst that can happen? It might be a stray Aquaban tablet used to relieve pre-menstrual bloat which, worst case scenario, would make me pee all day. I’ve had worse days, pharmaceutically speaking)

Today’s metaphor for my life then is the kitchen rummage drawer: Full of shit that nobody wants, some of which might kill you? Hmm. 

Back to tea, and the bewildering array thereof: when did we get so poncy about tea? We’re mental! I like my tea like my men – sweet, strong and nowhere near my vagina – (I know I’ve used that line before in relation to coffee but it’s been a while since I said vagina in a blog (Rachael! Hannah! Mummy’s said vagina again! Publicly! Twice! Three times if you count that time!)). I don’t want tea that tastes of the dentist thanks. I want builder’s tea, with the teabag left in. 

In an interesting and bamboozling tea related story, Facebook friends will have noted the strange incident reported earlier – my back passage has been the victim of a drive-by teabagging. Some wankshaft (sorry for language) has lobbed teabags over my fence! Unused! It then rained and well basically made tea on my drive. Bewildering! I’ll be on the front page of the Dumfries Standard next week – pointing angrily at my teabagged drive, looking all jowly because they take these pictures from below to make you look menacing, the fuckers. 

Lucid dreaming chips and Krystle Carrington. 

I’ve struggled this week blogwise. I’m blaming the lack of wheat and the effect of that on my mental state (flibbertigibetty and questionable at the best of times) and faculties. There’s no reason why I’ve stopped eating wheat except that I’m clutching at straws to shift this baby weight, which has been hanging around for 25 years. I’ve a bloody wedding to get thin for for chrissake. The wedding of the aforementioned baby, as a matter of fact. I caved and ate a sliver of toast last night and beat myself up so much about it I smoked a fag at the back door and mixed my bad self a cheeky little French Martini. 

So on to this week’s news roundup:

Good: had tea out with colleagues. Mushroom stroganoff with half and half (rice and chips). Very enjoyable except the stroganoff of course had cream in it which my body doesn’t seem to tolerate very well, with hilarious consequences. Ahem. 

Bad: evening parish inspection and lamppost sniffing with Tucker. This isn’t bad in and of itself (what does that phrase even MEAN?) but I was alarmed at the guerrilla tooting which has become very popular with youths driving (their mums’) cars. Indiscriminate car horn honking is dangerous to a woman of my age, weak of bladder and high of blood pressure. 

Bad: remember the blog of yore where I mentioned the blah blah blah thing? In case you missed it, here it is.  

You know those scenarios where somebody says “under no circumstances should you do blah blah blah” and you immediately go and do blah blah blah? I’ve done a blah blah blah.  Oh it’s a trifling thing really but I just needed to ‘fess it. I’ll beat myself up for it for days. I’ve taken to my bed for a few hours of self-loathing before Great British Sewing Bee comes on. 

Yesterday I finally redeemed myself from the shame of the above incident, mouthed the usual platitudes along the lines of “oh yes I’ve learned my lesson, don’t you worry about that, I’m NEVER LETTING THIS OUT OF MY SIGHT” complete with a comedy never-letting-the-thing-out-of-my-sight routine, to which my mother (before she started talking about fisting cows – see previous blog post) would have said “Lindsey – stop showing off”. Suitably redeemed, I left and got on with my busy day. and then not two hours later did the blah blah blah again. I’ve no defence except that I’m an idiot. Too busy showing off to pay attention to rules, apparently. I’m convinced I’ve adult onset ADD. 

Goodslashbad: Decided my limp hair needed some volume. (Hormones are a bitch of a thing)  Sprayed on some foosty old snake oil hair volume giver – dried hair upside down as instructed – looked in mirror and Krystle Carrington was staring back at me, looking all bouffant and gormless. 

Good; The wet patch in the utility room carpet isn’t Tucker’s fault. 

Bad: The wet patch in the utility room is the washing machine’s fault. I won custody of the washing machine five years ago at the battle of  I’m Leaving You and I’m convinced it’s cursed, possessed with demons as some kind of karmic retribution. I’m being retributed karmically through the medium of Hotpoint. 

Bad: Weird dream involving a nun eating chips. I think I deliberately lucid dreamt the chips, mind. She was probably thinking “I don’t even want these fucking chips but fatty here (jerks her thumb towards a sleeping me) thrust them in my hand. And fuck knows why she’s dreaming about nuns anyway, I’ve better things to be doing than skittering around a trippy tree-lined dreamscape with chips in my hand”

Finally I haven’t mentioned my lovely Dutch visitors! I’ll keep that for another post. I’m about to get in the shower before any other bugger stakes their claim. 

Satan’s jigsaw

I can now get on with my life. The missing bits were there all the time! What larks! I’d simply smooshed them into the wrong bit. 



PS- I’d like to thank Lorraine McDonald and Lucy Dawson for their support at this difficult time. 

PPS – I realise that the fact that I’m doing a jigsaw makes me look dull and uncool. But I’m doing it in an ironic way. Think of it as postmodern. I’m being ironic and postmodern. Yup. 

Thanks. No really. I mean it. 

Thanks for being kind about my blog. Thanks for reading it, liking it, sharing it, commenting on it, saying nice things about it, putting up with my overuse of the word vagina (which must have a Freudian interpretation) (Rachael! Hannah! Mummy’s at the vagina again!) and all the other annoying things I do like not closing brackets and writing big long sentences and not giving a hoot. I’m sure somebody out there must be bitching about it though –

“Who does she think she is with her shitty blog? Swanning around the internet like she’s got hooses tae let”

Christ knows why I do it. I just get the urge to write stuff down. It probably makes up for some deficiency elsewhere like my intolerance for chatting on the phone or making small talk. I don’t write it necessarily because I want folk to read it; I could just as easily do it anonymously but just think of the terrible things I could say if it was anonymous! That’d cause a right howdydoody!  

I fancied writing an anonymous bloggy blog about my brief and calamitous foray into online dating but I’m toying with the idea of writing that for an open mic night so I can act out the accompanying actions. No I really am. And that’d be nae fun if it was anonymous. In fact it would be nigh on impossible. 

I should really include pictures in the blog now and again so here are two. Here’s my bedside table. I’ve a thing about having fluids beside my bed apparently, and errr…oatcakes…and kiwi fruit…and sinus spray. 



Thursday ups and downs and not in a rude way. 

Up:  my Nespresso order FINALLY arrived. 

Down: opened Nespresso order – realised had Inadvertently ordered 100  decaffeinated capsules. Who drinks that? I stood staring forlornly at it like one of the penguins in that sad penguin film where the egg dies and the mummy and daddy penguin have a big long sad and look all forlornly at each other. 

Up: Good hair day. Very pleasing. 

Down: New bra proving tricksy. Boobs everywhere. 

Up: Post work nana nap. 

Down: Post work nana nap interrupted by unreasonable small crabbit dog being a shithouse and yelping at imaginary noises eg pin dropping in Annan. 

Down down deeper and down*You know those scenarios where somebody says “under no circumstances should you do blah blah blah” and you immediately go and do blah blah blah? I’ve done a blah blah blah.  Oh it’s a trifling thing really but I just needed to ‘fess it. I’ll beat myself up for it for days. I’ve taken to my bed for a few hours of self-loathing before Great British Sewing Bee comes on. 

* Status Quo are playing at Palmerston Park in June. Other bands are available. 

PS – just remembered the sad film was called March of the Penguins. 

PPS – just realised the fonts are all skew whiff (?) in this post. 

MJB 

I love Mary J Blige with every fibre of my being, if indeed my being has fibres because surely one’s being is an intangible thing and is therefore fibreless? Normally MJB  (I almost got her initials tattooed on my butt when I turned 40, such is my love for her, but thought it might be awkward if she was ever implicated in any Operation Yewtree style scandal so I plumped for a shooting star instead, which, as my skin has stretched and shrank with yoyo dieting over the years looks like somebody’s stuck their thumb in an inkpad then jabbed it on my arse) rips my heart out and chews it up when she sings but I’m struggling to see what she brought to the party here in terms of added value apart from interjecting lovely Sam “voice of an angel” Smith’s lovely singing with the occasional “oh yeahhhh” and  “mmmm hmmmm” and to warble up and down the scales a bit. Amiright? See for yourself. 

http://youtu.be/Ysg2h_V-YF8

I’m also annoyed by Taylor Swift’s  “nine time Grammy winner”. Nine TIMES Grammy winner, Taylor. Nine TIMES. 

Jesus. You people. 

Another illustrated metaphor for my life. This time involving a jigsaw with missing bits.

I requested, and duly received, a jigsaw for Christmas. (And a colouring book – but the stress of trying to colour inside the lines nearly gave me a coronary). I thought a jigsaw might help calm my mind and stop me monkey braining all over the bloody shop. And it’s a spacey themed one so double the fun. Truth is it’s sent me a bit doolally.  I started it last weekend and now I’m hyperfocusing on the bastard thing and it’s become another metaphor for my life.

. image

See the top left there? (Ignore the cute dog – I’ll come to that later – I don’t know how to crop pictures in WordPress). Well fuck me if there aren’t bits missing.

I waited for just the right conditions to start the jigsaw. I can’t remember what they were but there was something in the air and I thought “this is a good day for a jigsaw. It’s a jigsaw kinda day” as I lay on the bed, legs akimbo, waiting for the Immac to work its magic on my winter plumage. So I wiped all the crumbs and other detritus off the kitchen table onto the floor with my arm with a Dettol antibacterial kitchen wipe and out came the jigsaw. Re the table; purchased from the British Heart Foundation for forty quid, it’s the kinda table you’d have laid out the deceased on in days gone by (I’d imagine, although it’s a Seventies design so I’ve clearly gotten a bit confused there with my imaginings) and invited the neighbours in to gawp at them to say goodbye over a scone and a sherry. It’s a massive table. It’s got extra panels that slot in with a satisfying click. It had a lovely patina when I bought it but the cleaner (don’t you cocking well judge me) sprayed bleach on it to clean it and that was that. Patina = fucked. But it remains a marvellous piece of engineering and very jigsaw worthy, as it turns out.

So much for hoping the jigsaw would calm my mind. I’m scared the world ends before I finish it. I wake up thinking about it. So far I’ve only managed to do the outline with the exception of the missing bits. I’m obsessed with the missing bits. I’ve done three full sweeps of the box. THREE. Every single piece has been in my hands and examined closely for edges. I know I’m stressed because I’m humming. I hum when I’m stressed. I’ve been humming a lot during this icy weather. The stress of walking and staying upright on slippery pavements makes me hum. I walk past the jigsaw humming and sometimes look back quickly to see if I can catch it out. I’m even eyeing up Tucker. I’m convinced he’s eaten the missing bits. I might shake him upside down and see if they fall out, but if his response to the new brush I attempted to brush him with earlier is anything to go by I won’t bother. Crabbit little shit. I’ve checked his bed too, to no avail, but I did find my purple bra with the bow chewed off it.

The other worrying thing about the jigsaw is that I’m not really a completer. I’m more yer ideas wummin and get bored with longer term implementation. So the jigsaw, whilst it remains unfinished, is just something else for me to beat myself over the head with, figuratively speaking. I can’t see it ever finished, and it’s no good if somebody else does it. If somebody so much as touches it, I whimper, especially if they finish a bit I was enjoying, like for example the rings round Saturn. A visiting child touched it earlier today. I glared at it.

My life is a lot like the jigsaw of doom. I’ve got missing bits and I’ll be lovely when I’m complete. I don’t know what the missing bits of my life are though. A relationship? It’s safe to say I’m crap at them so I’m not in a hurry to shake Tucker upside down and see if one of them falls out. A Valentine’s card would be nice though. Not a sympathy one though – a real one, from a real admirer HINT HINT. So if you’re reading this and thinking I mean you, just assume I do. And I still haven’t been to the fucking Kelpies.

I forgot to mention cute dog in picture above. It’s Yoda. I think it might be a French bulldog. Can’t remember. I was too busy guarding the jigsaw.

Pasta’s a cruel mistress. You’re eating away thinking “god I’m so hungry I could eat this forever. I just can’t seem to get full. I wish this pasta would never end. After this I’ll swing by the Pammy cafe and grab a chip roll and a family bag o’ Skittles”.

 Five minutes later you’re lying on the couch wishing somebody would harpoon you to put you out of your bloaty misery, and thinking “tomorrow I’m just drinking hot water and lemon. Definitely that’s all I’m drinking. In fact I’m fasting tomorrow. Give the old metabolism a rest”. 

Another five minutes later you’re eyeing up the toastie machine and chain eating Jaffa cakes. 

Fucking pasta.