Good with words

Fear... distractions.... the efforts of a self-employed writer to pay the mortgage.... all that jazz.

Monday, February 27, 2006

To Whoever Sent a Trick Question to the Fashion Doctor

How do you keep the short-sleeved look going whilst disguising your fat wrists? Ha di ha ha.

Man Crying: Call 999

It seems as though my blog has been a shopping journal this last month or so. To redress the balance, here is a story about a train journey, a tunnel in the cliffs, and a boy who cried.

I was on a train (to Plymouth, but that is another, extremely emotionally-draining, story - just ask my mum). It was the most magnificent train journey in the world. The route wound through Exeter city, then straight down the Exe estuary and to the coast - and along the sea-front for miles and miles. It was fantastic - the train tunnelled through red cliffs and skirted dangerously along the coast, almost being lapped by the waves. Worth the £16 for the dreamy scenery alone. But suddenly, this picture of bliss was shattered: heaving sighs began from the seat behind mine.

They turned into sobs, and then sniffles, and soon it was weeping and nose-blowing ahoy. I worried about what to do, but I didn't know what sort of person was sitting behind me (which is important when you are wondering whether to be this person's source of comfort in an hour of need, obviously), and I tried to ignore it. Then I worried a lot more, about what could have set off this sobbing on a train journey, and all the terrible things that could have happened to this person, and I tried to pluck up the courage to turn and squeeze my face through the gap and ask if everything was okay.

Which it clearly wasn't, so I worried about what the person would say. After a few minutes the sobbing slowed down and then - horror of horrors - the person got up to leave their seat. And I finally saw that it was a young boy - alone - aged about 20. With the reddest eyes you've ever seen. He trotted off to the buffet cab, got a can of coca-cola and, trying to look casual, sat back down.

By now I was in total distress. All my maternal instincts had been prodded and when the sobs began again, I thought I was going to burst into tears as well.

I tried and tried to pluck up the courage to turn and ask if he was okay, or offer to fetch some tissues, or SOMETHING - but kept thinking of excuses. Oh, we're nearly there and I don't want to turn and ask and then when he starts talking the train pulls into the station. Well, I've cried on a train before and I would have preferred to be left alone. The very act of crying on a train is done in knowing solitude, isn't it? He is a young man, and the last person he would want to turn and speak to him is a young lady. Will he really want to talk about it? Everything is obviously NOT okay and I could open a can of worms and regret it forever.

On it went, until the train stopped, and I followed him along the platform, hoping to catch his eye and smile or talk to him, or SOMEthing.

Because a person who ignores a person crying is NOT the sort of person I want to be. Or think that I am. But just what exactly is the protocol for dealing with a crying stranger? Does anybody know??

Eeeeeeko-friendly cleaning

These cleaning products are (a) cheap, (b) environmentally-friendly, (c) effective, and (d) pretty enough to keep on display, which is v.important when your bathroom is barely big enough to swing a small springador puppy in.

You almost forget about the 'cleaning' part.

Buy here.

Wizard of Oz

It isn't often I spend money on frivolities, specially earning what I do, but I would literally have died if I didn't order these on the spot.

What do you mean, you haven't heard of death-by-shoe-denial?

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Books for Children

I have often wondered whether it is wrong to start building up a collection of children's books. For my unborn babies. They are expensive things, books, and you have to start sometime.

Steve and I usually buy our godson, Ryan, books. We have a brilliant time rolling about in the aisles of Waterstones, choosing the naughtiest and funniest ones.

My all-time favourite is 'The Story of the Little Mole Who Knew it Was None of His Business.' It is a picture book about a mole who wakes up one morning with a poo on his head (ringing some bells for me, you see), and sets out to find the culprit. Learning a lot about different sorts of poo in the process.

Other books we have bought for Ryan are 'Pants' and 'Dirty Bertie' (boy who eats stuff he finds on the floor, etc). And now on the shortlist are:

Where Willy Went! (amusing book about the facts of life) and
Jesus' Day Off.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Happy Monday

My favourite song from the Magic Numbers album now has a gorgeous video to match. Quirky, Amelie-esque, funny little film. With a dreamy soundtrack.
Music Video: I See You, You See Me

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Getting Dressed Again

I am all dressed up, with nowhere to go. The young man I was supposed to be meeting at lunchtime has phoned and cancelled. But I am bathed, with clean hair and a clean blouse. And I will have to get changed now, before I can take the dog out. It is bad enough getting dressed once in a day. Tch.

I plucked my eyebrows and everything. See?

Holly is lying on my foot but getting wriggly; I think we will have to go out soon. I have discovered that if I walk her a bit later - about 2 ish - then she will sleep on my feet until about 5. Then she gets ready for Steve's retun and lots of bouncing at 5.30. He is convinced I don't actually take her for walks at all - and judging by the way she leaps in the air as soon as he gets home, I don't blame him. It is slightly unfair that I get to look after her while she is (mostly) asleep - but then again, I do all the walking.

We are going to try a new walk today. On what I think is National Trust land, so there is no risk of farmers with shotguns.

Charlie has made a friend. Sometimes he comes in through the upstairs window and they play, I think, in our room. It is very jolly. Charlie has made quite a home for herself up there; she has fashioned a bed from the clean washing at the top of the stairs, and she is happy wandering in and out via the window. When she wants food or attention, she comes to the bottom of the stairs and mews loudly. As long as she doesn't have a house-party, I don't mind.

He is nextdoor's cat, and his name is Freddie. He is Charlie's ideal man, I think. He has been seeing off the Demon Tabby but won't raise a whisker to Charlie. She thinks he is the bees' knees. What she doesn't know is that he is afraid of his cat-flap. When he wants to get into his house he wails in the porch until I go out, climb over the fence and hold open the cat-flap for him.

Perhaps I should start a side-line in animal rescue. Ace H: Pet Rescuer.