Friday, 31 December 2010

Oh Look - A Nice New Year. Hope I've kept the receipt somewhere.....

I think we got away with it. Noone mentioned parties, or enjoying themselves. Phew.

And I'm the last one still up which just proves that I'm the most cool. The sad thing is, I probably believe this.

Now, the other night I decided to execute a very interesting experiment. I wrote all my New Year's Resolutions (yes I've already conceded that I am sad) in the back of my 2010 diary, and then flicked to the front and read last year's list to see how many were identical. Result: Gone down from 38 to 33 - but plenty of time to add more. (I'm sure I did last year - recall having over 40.) And about 14 were the same. The rest being almost the same. And I can boil them all down to 1 really: get off your fat arse. But the ones that struck me most we last year's No. 35 - 'Remember to be ME' (missing from the new list) and this year's No.7 - 'Add another dance thing'. Dancing is big in my head lately. Realised it is a deep need! Not just something to embarrass the children, although that is an extra benefit.

Then I did something really strange today. I pulled down my 'pigeon hole' thing from the top of the fridge - where paper stuff gets shoved for a couple of years until I then stuff it into another holding cell to wait its eventual summons to enter the sacred grounds of The Filing Box, under the coats. Some hope. But get me, I also grabbed this purgatorial holding cell and by the end of the day I had got both bastards sorted. Oh praise be.

It took all day. Lots of interruptions obviously - wiping boy bottoms, stuffing chicken bottoms, sourcing tracksuit bottoms etc but even on a good run (like for most of The Sound of Music) I could only do about 7 minutes with my eyes open before I had to bang my head on the table a dozen times. How do people work in offices all day? Insane. Next year (bugger that's just happened) - The Hallowed Filing Box shall be raised from its dust tomb and cracked open. Whilst praying I didn't lay a curse on it last time. I really do hate filing that much.

Sorry - all this tedious shit is leading somewhere I promise...... In the wodge of crap I found this poem. I think it's a poem - it doesn't rhyme or nuttin' but the lines are grouped poem-style like, but I'm no expert. (Ah - No.31 'Stop rambling'.) I was given this sheet of wonder one time last year by my counsellor, skim read it whilst nodding and saying 'oh this looks very interesting', made a mental note to take it in properly when I got home despite worrying it was some kind of hippy shit, and then, evidently, poked it into the white oblivion above the fridge. And today, I actually read the damn thing. Blimey. So..... here it is:

Oriah Mountain Dreamer

(Hang on a minute - I know the title already looks like bollocks but Bear With here)

What if there is no need to change?
No need to try to transform yourself
Into someone who is more compassionate, more present, more loving, or wise?
How would this affect all the places in your life where you are endlessly trying to be better?

What if the task is simply to unfold,
To become who you already are in your essential nature:
Gentle, compassionate, and capable of living fully and passionately present?

What if the question is not
'Why am I so infrequently the person I really want to be?'
But 'Why do I so infrequently want to be the person I really am?'
How would this change what you think you have to learn?

What if becoming who and what we truly are happens not through striving and trying
But by recognising and receiving the people and places and practices
That are for us the warmth of encouragement we need to unfold?
How would this shape the choices you make about how to spend today?

What if you knew that the impulse to move in a way that creates beauty in the world
Will arise from deep within
And guide you every time you simply pay attention
And wait.

How would this shape your stillness, your movement,
Your willingness to follow this impulse
To just let go
And dance?

It says at the bottom that this is the Prelude to 'The Dance', 2001 Harper Collins, which having just googled it seems to be one of a series of books about relationships and being a wumman and stuff - I have no idea if these are fantastic or the usual torrent of wordy words - but I liked 'The Prelude'. And it all seemed very apt for the current 'I must be a totally different kind of person' list that so many of us compile.

So there it is.

I am still going to copy my NY's Res's into the front of my new diary - but I'm placing last year's No.35 at No.1 and the new No.7 into the No.2 slot. And just see if I'm not the coolest ever - all year long. Yeah baby......

Actually I've just realised I've already broken one of them - two of them - a combo of No. 4 and No.30 which was to become my new motto:

Go to bed and read. Get up and write (or draw).

I'm most definitely the last one still up and judging by the clock, this is very much not cool even a bit.


There goes another one.

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Those Hazy, Crazy Lazy Days of In-Between Jesus' Made-Up Birthday and the Made-Up New Year Thing

OK. So we didn't get any Marks Brothers films. Or Buster Keaton. Or Laurel and Hardy. It's Xmas you TV scheduling bastards! I want people falling off buildings and being run-over by trains. You gave us Jesus Christ Superstar and Chocolat. Both perfectly lovely but EASTER films dickheads. It's bloody Xmas and I want funny with no pathos. I have no brain left after the sure-fire burn of December. I want FUNNY! The only reason I haven't got violent is 'cos we DID get The Goodies. Phew!!! Thank god someone out there understands me.

Now it's supposed to be that nice bit in-between The Noisy Family Thing and The Noisy Friends Thing. The bit where you can watch whole films, eat shit and wear the same clothes for a week. The nice bit when you can catch up on nice things you don't normally have time for like...... scrapbooks and papier mache trees. But not if you've buggered your right arm building a stupid igloo. No. Obviously I still have to do the crap things like washing-up, wiping bottoms and emptying the bins. Oh yes. But not make a fuss. Fuss is not allowed in this house. Making a sling from a scarf and putting frozen peas on the swelling is considered attention-seeking. As is having a little sit down. Unless The Goodies is on. So Thank You Baby Jesus for pretending to be born so I could have a little arm-rest with Tim, Bill and Graeme. The Three Wise Men.

And despite my griping, I AM eating shit and wearing the same clothes as yesterday. My left arm is getting better at typing. And I have managed to see the beginning of Mean Girls, the middle of Transformers and the end of Clueless Some day I'll make sense of it all.

But we have a new problem. It's called New Year's Eve.

Normally we just sort of ignore it. We have in the past pretended to the kids that we are having a party with just us and dressed up. Even Fancy Dress. One year we went so far as a Fancy Dress Shop and let them choose something. They chose me a PVC nun's outfit. Weird kids. But I haven't got the energy for all this forced fun anymore. Now Xmas is one thing - we do as we're told, go where we're expected, eat what we're given, watch what's on telly and say 'Lovely' alot. Then we do this again on The Other Side. I don't mean in The Underworld. I mean Petts Wood. Near Orpington. OK it is The Underworld. Then we shut our doors and fester in our filth until bloody New Year's Eve rears its stinking pain in the arse and we're expected to be sociable all over again. It's not that we never get invitations. We have - really. It's more that we just don't believe that Fun is never-ending.


We need to find a new family tradition for this deeply annoying 'celebration'. I'm happy to keep up with Father Xmas and the Advent Fairies (well, happy-ish). And I'm down with the Easter Bunny, and like totally chilled with being all Halloweeny, and even Valentinesy. These mostly entail Putting Sweets Somewhere. But the Now? My house is currently heaving with sweets. And I have no desire to open the door. It's cold. I've done smiling and worn tights twice this week already. Oh - I just hate fun.

Letting them stay up and watch Jools Holland? Boring. That won't cut it. We may remember the days of Andy Stewart and Moira Anderson but tell the kids that and it's as interesting as the orange in the stocking lecture.

Mr Roving Blade suggested cooking something special.

Duuuhhhhhhhh!!!!! With OUR kids? Stupid.


Or a Games Night?

Fight Club sprang to mind.


Gather round the piano for a good old singalong?

One of Little Rock Godling's compositions perhaps? I Don't Have To Be The Biggest Wanker, You Don't Have To Be The Biggest Wanker, We Don't Have To Be The Biggest Wankers medley in 6 part harm-o-nee.



Think we have about 5 episodes of The Goodies on Planner.


Think we have a Plan!!!

All Nite Non-stop Goodie Fest! ....All Nite - ish.

It might just work...

* ! * ! * ! * ! * `! * ! *

Saved by the genius of a giant pussy!!!!! And not for the first time!!!

** !! ** !! ** !! ** !! **

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Unparalled special status

How spazzy can I get? I've passed all the beginner classes and am now on a whole new level. Hang on - just had to retrieve my slipper that boinged off and got stuck under a chair a good 5 feet away in the dark. Where was I? Oh.

Back in business now I've picked the fluff-strands from my biggest tasseliest jumper out from between the keys. Getting good at picking these bits out of things. Lots of practice. I wouldn't normally bother but they look like pubes a bit. If you had black pubes. Which none of us do. Which just makes it worse. But it's my favourite jumper at the moment so worth the hassle. Where was I? Uh.

I'm supposed to be in bed but have dedicated my evening to catching up on some bloggy stuff instead. Bad idea to catch up with Grit. It's now morning. But I feel calmer in meself that I'm up-to-date with My People. Some of them. Will catch up with meself diary-wise tomorrow. The Bad Book has been neglected due to spazziness of the Advent Fairy kind. Got up-to-date - and even ahead of the game - with all that utter stoopidity last night. No more pins, ping-y gold thread or finger-fucking wire button loops. Just slide off pre-selected flag with accompaning button and serve chilled. Also have spare re-wired buttons to accommodate the daily flinging of personal button down the side of the bleedin' chairs by Ungrateful Small Bastards (official term). Not getting cross at all. Smile and slap pre-mentioned USBs round head 'by accident' with wrapping paper inside bit. Feeeels gooooooooood...... Eric Sykes is always with us in spirit.

But just how spazzy would one be to have already designed next year's mind-fuck December-blatter? Really really spazzy. And it's the third design this month. I think Father Xmas's robin has been spiking my mince pies with Stepford sap.

But it's pale in comp with my new injuries. All self-inflicted. Well - I know you're dying to ask........ Last Sunday (which was supposed to be cancelled but I forgot and got out of bed by mistake) - Thuglet twice flung his full weight onto my neck while I was in edge-of-chair-looking-at-the-telly-like-I'm-gonna-stand-up-soon-like-a-grownup-who-doesn't-sit-down-watching-telly stance which causes a whiplash-type sensation just like um whiplash. Shooting pain both times and lots of shouting with my PROPER cross face. I was so convinced that I was gonna wake up like Ann Widecombe (helped by a second night on the settee downstairs to keep Little Rock Vom-Monster company) that I wedged a hot water bottle down the back of my neck and stayed all warm and propped up til morning. Hooray - I can move my neck I thought as I stealthily hooked Thuglet's pain au choc towards my wakey-uppy coffee cup. Feels a bit scratchy tho'. Still felt a bit sore a couple of hours later. ' 'Ere babe - have I got a diggy-in mark where my neck-chain clasp was pressed against the hot water bottle? Can you have a look?' 'Fuck! What the fuck have you done?! You've got a blister the size of a £2 coin! Didn't you feel the burning you numptie?' 'Oh' The nice hot water bottle must have waited for me to fall asleep and then heat up the neck-chain clasp. Nice. Dr Roving Blade held his breath and burst it for me today. Felt the pus snake all the way down my back. Held off on having a shower for another couple of hours tho'. Low on oil in our tanker we are. Next approximate delivery date could be January 14th. Not stripping off 'til ration evening heating on. But what's another blister to me. It can have martinis with my thumb blisters. Created by shovelling snow with a heavy spade that's got no handle. And then deciding that shovelling snow into a washing-up bowl and then dumping out the way is more efficient. And then discovering that washing-up bowlfuls of snow make great igloo-inspiring ice blocks. And then laying the foundations of the greatest igloo ever built, big enough for actual human habitation. And then carrying on despite the tugging pain in my right forearm. Which by today now has a bulbous lump on it all squishy and agonising. But what's another lump? It can choose curtains with the bump on my head from forgetting I live in a dwarf cave after five and a half years.

But the oozing lip-volcano has cleared up now. And fish-scale gloop has stopped emanating from certain parts after a nice foreign man stuck sticks of silver nitrate up there last week. (I'm mouthing this like Les Dawson - and Miranda.... What? Don't you ever watch telly?) And the scab-mark of Zorro is fading a bit from my knee. And my singed taste buds have recovered from that carrot debacle the other day. And I'm sure the rest of my cuticle rips will have healed up a bit by Xmas lunchtime. And those gnat bite prints between my eyebrows are definitely less noticeable now.

In fact I feel a song coming on........

Tonight we resurrected the Spunk Lyric Game for Xmas songs. Not as cracker-ing as one might hope but it put a sparkle in my bloodshot eye. How about:

Little Spunky, Santa Claus is coming to spunk, Deck the halls with boughs of spunk, Oh spunk all you faithful (not much different to the original), Oh cum all you spunkful?, Rudolph the spunk-nosed reindeer, Let it spunk, let it spunk..., Last Xmas I gave you my spunk, I'm dreaming of a white spunk, Frosty the spunkman, I spunked Mummy kissing Santa Claus, In the bleak mid-spunk ........ oh it's just so childish! But they do say Xmas is for the children. Oh I've just lost me bloody slipper again.....

One last song to send me off to bed then....

* * Was Xmas eve babe ........ in the spunk tank ...... * *

Sing along now......

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Oh the weather outside is frightful.........


Six hours to get from 30 minutes away back home. No we're not going to buy a drink or any lunch - we have half a titchy bottle left and a packet of Twiglets. Get in the car. We'll be home in no time.......

Tap tap tap - Excuse me but the lady behind you asked me to tell you that one of your back wheels has frozen up and doesn't go round when you move forwards. Just sort of smokes.

Are you eating something? I can see him chewing! He's eating something! Last night's burger that you left in the car? Eugh.....


In the bowl darling - try to grab the bowl in time in future when you think you're going to hurl.

In the bowl! Not on me!! In the bowl!!!



Sunday, 12 December 2010

TV laptop bells-a-ringing

Ding dong merrily on high...

Last night was cabaret night. And Mr GPants and I were stepping out.

Just being in the car was exciting enough. Heading into the bright lights in our finery, high on heady 'fumes and mighty in crippling footsqueezers we wondered what was in store. The last time Mr GPs had seen a cabaret it involved glove puppets in Morocco apparently. Hand actions supplied. Yeah.... Anyway, back to the now... We hoped for dancing girls. Mr GPs hoped for no trannies. I hoped for plenty.

We got the girls. We got a can-can. Not as saucy as the waitresses but still - nice knickers.

We got a little bald chap in a nice tank top spinning plates. Took him about 45 minutes to set up for a 2 minute set. And then another 45 minutes to pack it all up again. He must love his job.

And yes we got a big glam singing trannie with the most astounding silver glittery shoes. A bit like a pair of mine I've got stashed under my bed, only about 7 sizes bigger. Not as impressive as the very tight leotard however. Not a trace of a bump. But hairy arms. Now my theory is, you wouldn't go through the bother of the Chop-Op and then not get round to waxing you arms. So his flexible friend had to be stowed away very neatly, somewhere. Well-wowed with those resonating bass notes then. Topic of the evening.

And YES s/he came and sat on my Mr GPants' lap. Bless him he took it well. I was hugging myself with glee. That box smartly ticked - tish!

And the little bald chap came back for another 2 minutes of juggling. Less to pick up this time. Just 5 balls and a hat. Much better. Do that next time little bald chap.

And one of the can-can girls came back too. She wouldn't. She might. Nah. Yes. Oh I say! She DID! Silver glittery nipples! I want some of those.

Shame the poor lass had to scramble back on later in her combats and hoodie to pick up all her discarded knick-knacks. Surely she could've sent someone else to do it. The little bald chap was free. But maybe she's had problems with this kind of thing before. Maybe a few too many special little items have been swiftly snaffled into some jugglers sequinned hat. Probably best left hands off eh?

But I really must say the true highlight of the evening was my Mr GPs all along. Elegantly pin-striped, a pencil-thin Clark Gable 'tache, a spot of Just For Men and a with naughty twinkle in his eye - my dashing rogue was just perfect. I even went so far as to declare I would change his name in my blog to something more fitting.

So it's goodbye Mr Golf Pants and HE-E-LLO-O-OO Mr Roving Blade.

Ding dong!

(Which reminds me..... any ideas on that leotard storage? Still on my mind. Don't really want it on my mind. Need closure. Let the bell end here!)

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Doctor Doctor I Can't Feel My Feet..

That's because we've amputated your arms.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Ok - so first up my alarm didn't go off. Lots of poking inert mop-tops with whispered panic. Violently dragging on socks and jumpers while their eyes were still shut. Trying not to wake up Mr GPants so he wouldn't tell me off for my alarm not going off. But he woke up and did That Face when I told him my alarm didn't go off. AND told me not to race just because we were late - with The Don't Race Face. Then he offered me the de-icer. 'I've got some. That's yours' I called sweetly as I raced - no I didn't... as I fluttered out the door. Squirted mine. Put it back in the boot. Decided I needed more. Boot now jammed shut. Fluttered back to the kitchen and grabbed the other bottle. Squirted more. Replaced it without detection. And away we scooted at last. Not racing. Not at all. Very difficult to race when you can only see out of one clear streak on the windscreen. ......mmmmmmhhhhh..... need more de-icer..... not going back...... just imagine The Face.

20 minutes on our way I don't think my brakes are being brake-y enough. Probably my imagination. Oooooooooooooooooooohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh OK .....Mission Aborted.

Several hours later - and with mighty thanks to Jim Broadbent and his big warm truck, and his sage words about how crap my car is, I'm back home in my courtesy go-kart and coffee'd up at last. All nice and floppy. Mmmn.... It seemed like a good idea to rearrange the living room and get the xmas tree out. It seemed like a good idea to small people anyway.

Several hours later, once I (and I alone) had tidied, hoovered, rearranged the living room, I find myself cackling like an escaped lunatic in our out-house-'barn'-animal-shelter thing where we dump stuff not allowed in the house. Like Xmas. The hysteria inspired by a cacky space where the tree once lived. Until we threw it out last summer on one of our great purges. Not sure why I found this so screamingly funny. Could not stop laughing. Xmas tree denied! Hilarious.

Then our boiler decided we hadn't had enough fun yet. Put its hand to its brow and blanked out. Nice. Just as I thought my hands would never again regain feeling after expertly balancing the recycling box on the steaming tower of landfill bags. Structures that high are built to sway in the wind they are. That's science. If not art.

But all this to the merry tunes of the season. Mr GPants, grumpy about tinsel-time as the best, has (as odd as it may seem) produced another top xmas songs CD. Panic, near-death and brain-freeze all the sounds of Wizzard, Slade, The Pogues and Alma Cogan.

Gotta laugh.....

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Pity the fool.....

That was a stoopid bloody post wasn't it? 'Ooh I bet it won't snow!' 5 days later and we were still in an igloo. But did I get all that lovely stuff done I dreamed about? Did I bugger. I forget that being in the house means being in the house WITH all the members of my own family, who are in the house with all the members of their own family, and this means....... well........ how can I put this nicely? I can't. We are not the Waltons. It's more like giant mutant bacteria on speed in the mosh pit at a Fishbone gig held in a crocodile-infested river when the wildebeest decide to cross from the ToysRUs bank to the Primark Sales side just as chimpanzee burglars on roller skates set off a couple of bombs and the elephant police come to search for clues in vaselined flippers and dalek hats. That nearly describes the interior 'look' we are going for this season. At what point in this scene I thought I'd get out my little pap mach tree is beyond imagination. I felt like a tiny mother bird squidged in the middle of a heaving mass of squawking open beaks. And if I raised my eyes to the heavens I was blinded by a blizzard of paper spikes. Who's bright idea was it to make pretty snowflakes? So now we had as much perplexing whiteness inside as well as outside the damned house. And wetness. My god the wetness. How much wetness 4 children can produce per garden excursion is knee-deeply astounding. My poor radiators just couldn't take the load. And so the sound of the washing machine door banging shut became louder and more floor-trembling with every slam of the back door. Well, when they bothered shutting the damned door that was. There was alot of door-banging one way or another - the washing machine, tumble dryer, the fridge, the oven ....... and what was that slam? Oh for fuck's sake they've bloody gone out again! More towels please...... More paracetamol..... Shame one can't quite slam the oven door behind one's head. I don't think it works with electric anyway. Would just have a hot pink bubbling noodle on my otherwise pasty white bod. Not good with magenta hair and flame streaks. I say 'flame'. It seemed better than 'orange'. I seem to have digressed.....

Ah well.....

What shall I wish for by accident next then?

Hey - I bet we never find a barrelful of gold under the old yew tree. Just think of the consequences that would bring eh?

(It might just work...?)

Sunday, 28 November 2010

Snow Show

Has anybody actually got any snow out there, or are THEY just threatening it for something to talk about. I'm bored of it (yes Mother 'bored OF it' ha ha haa) already and we haven't had any yet. Apart from that bit that's just suddenly started flittering past the window - DAMN. I'm in a grumpy enough mood simply being cold and surrounded by children who think I'm interested in juggling and dinosuar contortionism.

Explanation of latest grump: cold, can't get on with the things I want to get on with, can't be bothered to get on with the things that I have to get on with, too many things that I want/have to to get on with, no energy, no gumption, no interest.... and another sore lip. To sum up: miserable git.

And I've drunk my coffee which means that I'm supposed to switch off now and go and 'do'.

But I keep getting distracted by hopeful little moppets squeaking about snowflakes.

Eughhh I hate bloody snow.

Then again....if it snowed, then I would have the perfect escape hatch from doing things. We'd be trapped in again and therefore excused from outside life. Not excused from inside life however, but it would still slow down - like driving past a road accident - to look through the windows alot and tut.

But...... we're out of biscuits. And proper coffee. So all in all it had better not bloody snow. Plus I am waiting for an appointment for some consultant type to peer up my lady bits. Probably best to get that out the way sooner rather than... But if it snowed I wouldn't be able to go. And I don't want to go. Not that they've made the appointment yet. Somebody rang me to ask if I could do Monday. Too much to reorganise so I asked what about Tuesday. 'I'm just booking Monday now' 'And you can't move on to Tuesday until you've filled up Monday?' 'Yes' ............. I'm assuming she never did fill every slot on Monday as I haven't heard back. Suppose I'll have to wait until Monday actually passes by and wait for the next appointment I can't meet to be offered. Don't you just adore medical administration? Even more useless than educational administration. Third in line are shoe shops who can't order in a non-shopsoiled pair of something until they've sold the unsaleable ones 'cos Head Office says so. Are office workers marked at birth? Worker ant, soldier ant, worker ant, soldier ant, unimaginative blinkered box-ticker with no communication skills? Yes, administration for you. Next! Taking that further..... what the bloody 'ell did I look like as a baby? Life of unachievement and chaos for this one. Hmmmnnnn - art college. That should bugger it up for the rest of its life. Aspiration with no talent - perfect. Next!

Maybe up in Cloudland the Snow Monkeys are waiting for all the forms to be completed and triple checked by Head Office before they're authorised to drop a flake. They're probably waiting for my appointment to be set. So I don't reckon it's ever going to snow.

For now, I've drunk my coffee (instant but I can't really tell the difference) so I'd better go and DO something. I can hardly contain my enthusiasm. Next job, the bogey hankie mountain.

.....Trudging through a Winter Wonderland.......

Monday, 22 November 2010

SOMEBODY tell me!

Just forgive me everyone for being so totally crap at catching up on my essential blog reading.

When I finally catch up on my non-essential advent fairy bullshit, and my totally non-interesting Xmas 'net shopping, I may attempt to get back to normal. Who am I kidding? I may attempt to get back to the familiar abnormal. But when my bloody children, (for whom I am surely making myself sick and anxious and angry and blog-starved), FINALLY learn how to GO TO BLOODY BED and BLOODY S T A Y T H E R E, I might just calm down. I might.

I now have just over a week to sew on stupid letters and stupid buttons and stupid bells and stupid tassels to my stupid bunting and I haven't even made all the stupid tassels yet, or threaded half the stupid buttons on to stupid wire to make stupid buttony beads to punctuate the stupid bunting flags with the stupid tassels on. All this to day-by-day slide onto the stupid cord which I still haven't even measured and checked if I have enough, which I will tie onto the stupid hooks which I still haven't checked if I have any, to the stupid oak beams which will probably be impossible to penetrate with the stupid hooks anyway.

And what did I do tonight whilst still waiting for damned children to go to bloody sleep?

Scribbled out next year's stupid bloody ideas for stupid bloody advent.

There really is something wrong with me.

But I adamantly refuse to fix it.

There must be a cure.


Tranquilizers for the kids. Tramlines of coke for me?

This is all a pathetic reaction against the fact that I cannot cook or keep the house clean or know what an iron looks like. I could just buy Spongebob chocolate calendars but no. I have to prove myself to be some sort of Mother Supreme by doing insane little secret makey special stupid bloody advent surprises every stupid bloody year and spend the last couple of months leading up to stupid bloody Xmas with an average of 2 hours of sleep per night. Then, of course I am such a delight to live with that my children will always cherish those warm Xmas memories for the rest of their disturbed blighted lives.

'Tis the season to be sectioned.

Damn - you know what - I could have just done at least 20 bloody button loops instead of spewing my guts all over the keyboard.

Forgive me everyone ........... but I'm gonna hit publish and get me tassels out.

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Who Knows Where the Time Goes........

Across the purple skies.......

Bless you Sandy you knew wot wos wot.

I can't put my perpetual startled expression and whiney 'That CAN'T be the time!' so poetically. Suffice to say - I don't seem to have time to scratch my arse at the moment. Told you I wasn't so poetic.

Too many things in my head - well passing thro' the space between my ears anyway. My Dad used to say if a thought found its way into my head it would soon get lonely and leave. I may have said this before. Not only do stray thoughts pass through like misty trains (is that more poetic?), my memory for them, or what I have/haven't said already, what I have/haven't done is completely lost in that mist.

All I do know is that I'm not keeping up with myself. And I'm a bit tired. And a bit ponder-y. And it's that time of year again - I bring it on myself I know. But those Advent Fairies of mine have got less than 2 weeks to produce 96 delightful little secrets every morning. But it's also that time of the year that I get tireder. I don't like the short days - the early darkness seems to make me think that 'productive time' is over - and I get all slumpy and cardigany and just want chocolate on a permanent drip. I think I am a permanent drip.

But now it's bedtime for annoyingly bouncy boys. Time for more Gary Larson cartoons (Little Rock Godling's favourite). The Far Side indeed. Been there. Never quite made it back. But snakes in pinnies and poodle-head hunters are a blessed relief from bloody children's books. Obviously apart from the one I am writing (when do you do that then Mrs? Oh ... when I'm asleep). Off I go. Wish me luck. I'll be back downstairs in about 2 hours with Ken Dodd hair and pins and needles having fallen asleep halfway thro' a sentence with 2 monkeys draped across my head.

Up the wooden hills to Bedfordshire...... down Sheet Lane to unremitting insanity.

Night night my lovelies......

I must find the time to bloody blog again. Orrr.... Did I do that already?

Monday, 1 November 2010

Bewitched, Buggered and Bewildered

We had fun!

We had fun in The hated Village of Hairshirt Hypocrisy I think I've mentioned before.

We made cakes. It's what nice people do.

Not overly certain if nice people also bundle straight into the hostess's kitchen demanding teaspoons to finish decorating their offering but I think we got away with it. Fairy cakes of varying sizes (due to scavenging cake cases of varying sizes from the bottom of the rusting tin whilst swearing and blaming the government), gratuitously smothered in orange and green goo with a liberal and democratic smattering of Skittles. They looked just darling nestling in amongst the pumpkin soup and carob brownies. I thought so. Didn't look so good smeared on the cream cushions I'll admit but the horrified faces were just SO right for Halloween. Just the right spirit.

We did that demanding stuff for no good reason thing too. What's that phrase? Something By Menaces. That's what someone cleverer than me said anyway. We had quite a gang of kidlets all looking dead spooky-cool banging on doors like Special Branch. And Thuglet - slightly grumpy face squidged into a fluffy dinosaur 'bonnet' thing and a tail. Boldly accessorizing a nice cardigan. Very funny indeed. And being The Village....... one of the delightful little spooklets politely asked of the proffered cake 'Is it vegan?' Not 'Cake - yay!' or even 'Where's the proper sweets?' like any other kid. Strange how noone but me thought this was hilarious. Quickly converted my gutter-emptying guffaw into a stage cough.

Back at the party, all my boys were a huge hit on the dancefloor. All those Michael Jackson moves impressed the locals. Money bloody well spent those classes. Damn fine show. Damn fine party to be sure. Little Rock Pumpkin won Musical Statues and Musical Cushions. Probably due to something by menaces too...... Those Skittles are really kicking in now. I think I'm getting signals that it's time to go home.....

Slipping into the car a little while later, it all kicked off. Of course. 'You stole my lolly!' 'No I saw your lolly fall out your bag into a puddle. A really muddy one!' 'Haven't you got enough bloody lollies in that freaky ghost head already?' 'That was my FAVOURITE lolly!' 'I'm NOT having this all the way home!' Devil Mother turns up the stereo and knocks her horns awry. Now looks even more demonic. 'Give - me - MY - L O L L Y !!!!!' 'AAaaarrrrggghhhhh!!!!!' ....variations on a theme carried us all the way home. I always notice that the more fun my Monster-Brats have, the more bastard-like they are afterwards. Every time. The Hammer Car of Horror.

By the time I'm slunking into my own settee like an empty treat bag, back in my own familiar smells and sticky patches, I felt the urgent need for cucumber and carrots. We'd consumed so much carb, sugar, E numbers, MSG etc over the weekend I had to balance the books somehow. One carrot stick did the trick tho'. Back to business...... Chocolate eyeball anyone?

It's almost as exhausting as bloody Xmas.

But without the new slippers.

Sunday, 31 October 2010

Cute Traditions for Cute Families....... what am I thinking?

SATURDAY 30th OCTOBER: In between being That-Woman-Who-Barely-Contains-Her-Bile-And-Hisses-At-Her-Small-Child-Through-Clenched-Teeth-In-Sainsbury's and That-Perfect-Smiling-Devoted-Pinny-Smoother-Encircled-By-Perfect-Smiling-Rosy-Little-Faces, there had to be a little work. I won't burden you. But there was more hissing. Possibly a little shouting. A sprinkling of screaming. And the merest hint of bi-polar implosion. But we made it through our 'traditional' (????????) Halloween family love-in. We got big pumpkins, we got little pumpkins (oh yes they bloody are - 'squash' is not for the likes of us). We got sweeties. We got a deluded madwoman determined to make this a Lovely-Bloody-Evening-For-Everyone!!!!!! Bit more hissing......

This IS our damned tradition. At least I tried to initiate this lantern-lit garden sweetie hunt last year. They all want to do that Trick or Treat lark. We don't have neighbours. We don't have many invitations either. Following Daddy out the back gate and round to the front door, (leaving Mummy just enough time to grab sweets, a wig and scary lipstick to answer the knock with a cackle), just wasn't going to cut it this year. Last year I managed to sell Minx for the night to ToT with a chum in her street. Result! This still left 3 boys. On a roll we sold them to Nanny and Grandad while Mr GPants and I scarpered to see Steve Earle playing over in Croydon - (scary enough). I lovingly prepared separate decorated bags of sweeties for each and quietly asked Grandad to hide them all in their garden and let them go out with their little carved lanterns to seek them out. Caring and Creative Mother Rewards surely a given.....

So did you go out in Grandad's garden with your lanterns last night?

No Grandad had his torch.

Oh. Well did it take you long to find all the sweeties?

Nah. Grandad hung them in the tree by the front door.

Hung them?

Yeah. He hung the Tesco's bag you gave him in the tree.

Oh...... Good ol' Grandad.

Cut to this year and the cute sight of 4 excited little moppets scuttling through the back door, swinging their lanterns like it's 1967 down the Kings Road.... Their mission: find all 5 spooky picture bags full of sweeties - pumpkin, spider, skull, bat and ghost. Just one each!!! Just ONE!!! How many skulls have you got there? No I'm not relighting that damn lantern again. Just put the bloody thing down, find the friggin' sweets and let's get back inside for the 2nd half of TV Burp. Oh and have you all found your extra secret treat thing too? Well where did you put it? Yes I know you don't like the popping candy ones but there's a normal one for you - oh just go and look near the fence. Yes it bloody is! On the post! Oh for gods' sake THERE! COME ON!!!

Back inside, ready for my shiny pinny-smoothing moment..... 'Mu-um! You KNOW we don't like these ones!!! Sp - sp - spl - spleugh.... '

Still working on the multi-coloured striped jellies. Think I'll pour them down their pants.

But tonight it is ACTUAL Halloween night and I have managed again to sell Minx to her chum AND secure an invitation to a ToT party for the boys. Yes, MY boys.

I'll let you know......

Friday, 29 October 2010

Been a Long Time Been a Long Time Been a Long ohhh you know.....

Dunno what I've been up to all this time. Seems like about a year since I've switched on the damned 'puter. Don't know what I've got to show for all my busy-ness. But I'll think of something. When the kids haven't just put 'The Middle' on telly. Maybe I'll just have a peek at my diary, except that my pen ran out the other night and... oh yeah I think I kind of got stuck on last Sunday. Or maybe it was the Sunday before that. Either way..... But I had cyber-scribbled a little list of 'things' that must have meant something. It went kind of like... plums, spiders, toes, sewing box, mooncup, Match Attax, Essex and it rounded off with a question: Why are all my favourite songs about murdering your lover?

These little insights into my own brain are not enlightening.

I'm off again. Got to put tealights into horrifically mutilated pumpkins. Oh yeah - we did pumpkins! I remembered something! I also made pumpkin soup. It was OK. Not as good as my friend's pumpkin soup that she even brought on our last nature walk thing of the year (god was that only yesterday?) - in a big pot, with lots of cups for everyone, carefully wheeled about in a pushchair all day til we found a suitable lunch log. That's pumpkin soup dedication. And the chap who does all the knowledgeable talky stuff's dog did all the washing up too. I have to do my own washing up. And fish out slimy seeds to put in pots to grow our own next year (yeah.... I'll SO do that). (Really ought to fish out slimy fish from a totally opaque bowl. Yeah.... ) 4-way pumpkin scraping and scooping and souping and slurping is enough slime for one day. And 4 mini ones to make into lanterns for garden sweetie hunting tomorrow night too. What am I like? I swallow all this 'traditional' stuff whole. We never did pumpkins when I was a kid. I never tasted a pumpkin til I was prob in my 30s. I did make a spider out of pipe cleaners and a cotton reel once 'cos I saw it on Play School. I scampered into the lounge that afternoon with boinging it on a bit of elastic shouting 'Bouncy bouncy weeee!' to find a priest standing there with his arms raised blessing the house. Something to do with the then fashion of having a mass said in the warmth of the parishioners' houses. Thankfully this phase didn't last long. I know my mum was probably bullied into it somehow - really not her cup of tea that sort of thing. Way too sociable. But she did have a soft spot for this old boy (the priest man). Thinking back I reckon he was the only one of That Lot Up The Road who remained sober for very long. There always seemed to be a trail of staggering men in black. Very often from our house. What was I talking about? Plums, spiders..... Don't recall anything about drunk god botherers. Oh - Halloween memories it was. Think it's time to go. I'll try to have a think about something more coherent while I'm extinguishing the fire I'm about to start over on Mantlepiece No 2.

Coming darling.... Oh actually I think we've got the same problem as Birthday Season. I wonder if Minx has started smoking yet.

Got any matches?

Why not? You're 11 already!

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Ta Ta and thanks for all the peas...

Wot wiv all my ranting of late, I forgot to announce the recent demise of ....What-was-its-bloody-name.

The fish thing. Minx's fishy. Fishy..... Hhhhhh....

It did have a name to start, which has slipped my goldfish bowl brain. But being a fish of very little brain itself, it soon began to gather as many pseudonyms as ... well, me. (I have a diff mon for every blinkin' thing I do. Easier that way. Leave no trail....)

It got fat very quickly. So obviously got called Fat Fucker. It kept pretending to be dead - always floating upside down near the surface. So I started calling it Harold (as in And Maude). Little Rock Godling called it Max. Which was quite funny as it was at its Max weight. He also called his own fish Max. When Thuglet finally got 2 tiny minnows to go in the orb, he called them Max too. Minx called it many interesting girl kinda names. So interesting I can't remember a single one. Mr GPants called it every name under the sun. He was the one who had to keep scooping it out and feeding it peas. It spent its last few days back in solitary. Just him and the peas. With a bit of plant stuff for entertainment. (A bit like childhood of old really). This then earned him a new name - the Cooler King.

And now The King has left the building.

Last Sunday, during a break in the torrentials, Minx skipped out into the garden and dug him a little grave, laid him to rest and scattered flowers. 'Done it.' Back on Facebook. Sorted.

We all felt compelled to make it into a bit more of a ceremony. Got to give the little sod a proper send off. I've presided over many a fishy funeral before. Student days. We had a viking burial, a funeral pyre, a trebuchet-style launching.... Come on. Crocs on. All stood round. 'Anyone know a fishy song?' LRG put his hands together all holylike. Dunno who's house he's got that from. Must've been on Spongebob.

Mr GPants started 'Who shall have the fishy...' ohh-ooh good one! 'On the little dishy...' Altogether now - 'Who shall have the fantail when the boowat cooms in?'

LRG sweetly sang '12345 once I caught a fish alive...' And Thuglet sang 'Happy Birthday'. All very fitting. Then we took pictures of our feet around the graveside. Then we started fighting over the camera. Then I went inside and slammed the door.....

One down, 4 to go.

Saturday, 9 October 2010

One for the Toad

Coming home late the other night I was beaten through the back door by a toad. A real beauty. Don't get rated on their looks too much do toads. I think that's a shame. Our friend was big and gorgeous. Got Honey Badger Boy to scoop him up in a big bowl so we could take a picture before Mr GPants escorted him to the other side of the 'Fuck! He's jumped out!' Ah well. It was outside again at least. Keep meaning to look up those nice amphibian people I mentioned before and be all Citizen Scientisty with my latest sighting. Yeah - like, tomorrow...

The toad theme is echoing somehow. The show on near Xmas this year at our nice cosy theatre is The Adventures of Mr Toad. Now I like to take the little sodlets to see a show at Xmas, and I like to do followy-uppy things so something about a toad seems perfect right? And we're getting a schools rate discount. So what's the grief?

I fucking hate The Wind in the Willows.

So I'm busy texting the friend who's organising it. Minx, at their house, has said she wants to go, so I feel guilty enough to ask the boys what they think. Stupid. 'Right, does anyone want to see a show with like people dressed up as a toad and stuff?' Really stupid. This sounds cool to small boys. Bugger. At least Honey Badger Boy screws up his face and says 'Nah'. Was a bit worried there as he's the real animal-obsessor. Safeish ground tho' on the 'show' front - it's inside, you have to sit down, and it's usually a bit crap. Why did I ask the small ones tho'? They say 'Yes' to everything.

Mr GPants comes back. Thoughts pop up.

'Do you like The Wind in the Willows?

'No I fucking hate it. Posh boys shit.' - with added wanking hand signals.

Bugger. I text back 'Can Minx go with you?' I tell the boys 'Shame.... all the tickets have gone.'

Did I dun good or is I a bad bitch? I did consider it see? The make-up might be cool.... But I faltered at the point where I imagined me handing over money. I stumbled when I thought about luvvies in latex and tweed. I choked when I heard the first throaty jolly lines in my head. No. I can't do this.

I really can't do Wind in the fucking Willows.

Nor can I do Enid bleedin' Blyton. Or Alan twatting Bennett. I sometimes wonder if I am English at all? I also hate Wimbledon wankin' tennis. And The Last Night at the poxy Proms. Especially Pomp and cocksucking Circumstance. I hate David dickhead Dimbleby. Alan titface Titchmarsh. Both these last 2 could be described as 'toady' - no way! My toady was lovely. The English language is weird. The English are weird. Especially things considered 'quintessentially English'. Instant repulsion. Back to my hate list then... Chuffin' Chaucer. The bloody Boat Race. Blue pissin' Peter. In fact most of Radio knobbin' 4 is wank - even the bits I like (the dour pauses and tweety bird sounds whenever they do an OB). Not interested in the rancid Royals at all, or the arse-roll newspapers they appear in - whether they're 'toadying' (no!) to them or issuing poison. Nor do I have any time to waste (sliding further down the slimy scale) over the likes of Damian h'wanker Hirst, or Florence felchin' Welch or anyone from a shitty gritty Soap or or ANYTHING. I don't even like The chirpy bastard Beatles.

So what'cha gonna do? Slam me in the stocks outside the Albert Hall and pelt me with roast beef, yorkshire pudding and builders' tea whilst Vera Lynn sings The White Cliffs of Dover in a tin hat?

I'm gonna stay in my little 18th Century English farmhouse and be all English in my own way. I'm gonna drink Columbian coffee; eat curry, pasta and pain au chocolat; listen to Country & Western; wear clobber made in Asia somewhere; start that Stieg Larsson book and watch Match of the Day.

Having a laugh at the idea of the Commonwealth Games tho'. Mr GPants can't really believe it's still going. Just the word 'common-wealth' makes him ramble on about our dodgy history shenanigans til we're praying for Billy Bragg to crop up somewhere for some light relief. He thinks it's all a bit 'we are still the British Empire'-y and especially rubbish 'cos most of the winners wouldn't win if it was the Olympics. Not sure what I think. It's nice the competitors get a chance to do their stuff I suppose. And at least when someone English wins they now play 'Jerusalem' instead of God Save the cakkin' Queen.

I know it's still got god references but.... it's William Blake. Now I like him.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Hey - we have an achiever here!

Obviously not me. But you knew that already. No - it is my Minx. She has passed her Level 2 ice skating test after SUCH MUCH dragging of bladed heels in the Field Moves department 'But I hate them! They're boring!' Every bleedin' lesson she got them wrong. On the wrong edge, arms all wrong, bottom sticking out instead of knees bent and she can't count..... Wrong Wrong Wrong!!!!! Then last Thursday we squeezed in an extra lesson and she finally gets it right! Yay! Wednesday's test will be OK after all. Tuesday's lesson - Wrong Wrong Wrong!!!!!!! Oh fuck she's crap. But today..... bottoms up! Got through! Worth getting up at 4.30am for and driving for an hour and a half in teeming rain for and hanging around the coldest place on earth for another 3 hours for? Oh yes. Especially as none of that applied to me. I did wave her and Daddy off at about 5am - or something - nagged about leg warmers and a thicker jumper, then went back to bed. I know where I truly belong.

I also know where I truly don't belong. It is getting more and more clear that I do not belong in a Michael Jackson-style Street Dance class. I am becoming more and more lost and unbalanced with each week. I have now resorted to being the disruptive element (disruptive elephant would be more accurate) in the back row who this week finished on her knackered knees in tear-streaked hysterics at her own ineptitude while everyone else was perfecting their moonwalk. I did resist performing my own signature move - the moon. Only because by then I couldn't use my arms effectively. All that pointing, dragging and grabbing ...... I just can't be taking this seriously. Everyone else looks kinda cool but I look like ...well, exactly what I am: a slightly plump uncoordinated mutton-as-lamb fool. Normally I don't care. Don't go in for mirrors much in this house. The dance studio is ALL MIRROR!!!! I do not belong there!!!!!!!!!

Dancing is not for the post-birthers. I have said it before. It is some kind of chemical reaction that occurs when things that are really too big to be anywhere near your lady bits get squeezed out from there and leave your entire body suddenly incapable of cool moves ever again. I'm sure David Attenborough must've done a programme on it - the natural cycle of doing dancing to attract a partner so you can do procreating and when you've done that, the dancing reflex is lost immediately. No longer biologically necessary.

I think being cool is very much over-rated anyway. As is cleanliness, appropriate humour, sympathy for illness, nutrition..... This family is never going to get on Blue Peter.

To prove my point I shall list our latest fun and games - (Oh the funny things they say!!!!!! Just don't repeat any of this to Social Services.) Here goes:

I may have previously mentioned my Little Rock Godling's aversion to hygiene. I asked him the other day 'When did you last have a bath?' Shrug. Rest of family unusually quiet. All thinking. Nope. No bells ringing. 'When did you last change your pants?' I can hear the wind whistling down the old chimney. Dim echoes of ghostly ticking. 'Hmmmnn ....' A minute later I've got him on my lap and despite his history he is still unbelieveably edible. 'Oh I'm going to eat you all up.... but maybe when you're clean.' 'Yes' he replies 'Or I'll be itchy butt flavour.'

Last week at my mum's we were playing 'Tell Me' - (where you spin a dial thing and it lands on a letter and you ask a question and then you have to give an answer beginning with that letter - family funfunfun...) The letter was 'u'. The question was 'Something you would find underground'. Hmmmmmmn...... Minx came up with 'Uncle Brian'. Gallows humour from an 11 year old. That silent hysteria again took hold. The sort of laughing that you do when you're really not allowed to. The sort that hurts your stomach and ruins your mascara. It may have been 4 years now but my mum was really not ready to see the funny side. Which of course made it way more funny. Ow.

In the park yesterday one of the mums was looking out for another's little girl when she needed a wee. The toilets were a hike. 'Would you do a wild wee?' Blank look. 'Like in the bushes or something?' Frowning now. 'Um.... when you and mummy go for walks in a country park say, and you need a wee, where would you wee then?' 'In the stinging nettles.'

And I can add another Vom Notch on the side of my car. Same seat. Different little friend. Same journey (the big one - the ice rink at dawn's crack). Same 'Woof-Splatt!' noise. The same reaction. 'Open the window, give him a wet wipe, we're running late.' I'm gonna get a reputation. A different one!

And before you know it it's bloody dinner time again and I just can't be fucked.

As I said, it's all over-rated.

And the childishness doesn't stop when we finally get to bed. Thankfully I can't recall how the converstion got started but it led to a new puerile game: substitute the word 'spunk' for the word 'love' in all your favourite song titles. Here are just a few:

Spunk Me Do
This Guy's In Spunk
Spunk Hurts
Baby Spunk
How Deep is your Spunk?
Spunk Letters in the Sand
Hot Spunk
Yummy Yummy Yummy I've got Spunk in My Tummy
Spunk Me Spunk My Dog
Ever Fallen in Spunk With Someone You Shouldn't've Fallen in Spunk With........

There were more but it was late...... memory not what it was. Thank fuck. But none of these titles match up to Little Rock Godling's lastest list of his songs for his band 'Skulls On Fire':

I've Never Been Nine
Skull On Fire
Dirt Case
I Don't Have to be the Biggest Wanker

He's going to go far that boy. I hope he'll remember his old ma for all her love and support when he's swathed in groupies beside his LA pool. 'And this one's dedicated to my dear mother' ........... I can't begin to imagine where it can go from here. But to be honest, with parents like us the poor little sod doesn't really stand a chance.

I can already hear the stadium ringing with the chants of 'Wanker! Wanker! Wanker!.....'

I'll be bursting with pride. That's MY wanker up there! 'Wanker! Wanker! Wanker!.....'

Oops..... * * STOP PRESS * * I've made an error on LRG's song title No 2: this should read We Are Skulls On Fire

I hope this now makes perfect sense.

The ill-informed researcher in question has now been dealt with in accordance with the rules of the house. Back to the poo mines for me.

Monday, 27 September 2010

Rampage Scrampage Dampage Jampage Stampage Drampage Trampage.......

A Rampage of Home Ed kids. A Trampage of Home Ed parents. A Scrampage of all who see us coming. Perhaps. Needs work.

Updates: it was definitely a badger's skull we found last Thursday. At Kent Goes Wild last weekend in Dunorlan Park they had a fox, a badger and a rabbit's skull laid out alongside. I shall never again confuse the species. The badger specialists even demonstrated the singular nature of the badger's hinged jaw - the only mammal with such a variety. And it has a funny mohican crest which apparently doesn't do your car much good if you hit one. Doesn't do the badger much good either mind - the car will still win. Thuglet and Little Rock Godling tried to befriend the aged stuffed badger on display - which simply revealed the hasty job the nice badgery folk had done of sticking it's brittle front leg back on earlier in the day. Badger bodgering. Time to move on.

I got quite close to a tank of slow worms. Made 'Mmmmnnn' noises. Trying to be cool. I really don't like things without legs. Funny considering I spent most of my early adulthood completely legless. Got talking to the nice amphibian people (I mean people who like amphibians, not green gilled gurgling types, this is Tunbridge Wells darling. Disgusted they may be but not seeking revenge on Earth for crimes against algae and the betrayal of that Marina bint.) Ended up filling forms about when and where we'd seen frogs and stuff. And then reptile Boy pipes up about the snake skins found in our garden a couple of years ago and is asked to identify them from their jars of scale-suits. Adders then. We got adders. Oh joy.

I kept up Perky Parent for a remarkably long time. For me. Reptile Boy had one of his football chums with him so I had to pretend to be human. I'd arrived at their match with easily 7 seconds to spare before the final whistle blew. Clapped, said 'Well done, jolly good' and scooped them all back in the car with minimal muddage on boots. Parental devotion see. Driving past the back of Dunorlan I spotted space in the car park so swerved in sharply, expecting excited little faces. Got startled whiplash wobbly heads and choking noises. Still.... it's a park. They're boys. That's what cool parents do isn't it? Parks and stuff. Get out the fucking car then! 'Let's go and spot some terrapins!' Small boys are so easy to please. The bigger boys did well. Kept their disdain well reigned.

But terrapin-free zone. No terrapins, no Aquaphibians....... But we did capture a remote controlled boat enthusiast. Friendly species. The enthusiast wasn't remote controlled. (Not obviously.) His boat was a replica of the flagship of 6 vessels sent to patrol Hong Kong in the last days of British rule. It was the last one to leave British Hong Kong waters, escorting the Royal Yacht Britannia. I love finding people like this to yabber away to, picking up stories along the way. Aren't my children lucky to have such a outgoing mother who feeds them such nutritious experiences of the world around them? .......................... OK. Maybe they weren't as delighted as I with my armfuls of colouring-in pages and wordsearches and Junior Nature Recorder Packs, but we did come away with prehistoric sharks' teeth and a belemite. And balloons. Happy small boys then. And a dirty old tennis ball to kick. Happpy bigger boys then. Promised food. Got back in the car.

Now obsessed with mushrooms and toadstools. Gap in our Usborne Spotters Guides there. And not one on spiders. I need to know this stuff. Trawling through lists of Fungi books. Still reading bed-time tales of slimeys and creepies. Spend every Skate Club cafe time glued to sticker books on croakers and crawlies. Every episode of Deadly 60 digitally preserved. Will our wonder of nature ever ebb? Never did nuffink like all this at school. Even outside the kids' gymnastics class today all the grown-ups are swapping mushroom books - and bags of freshly foraged King Alfreds. We never stop us.

And adventure seems to find us. After gymnastics we all descended on yet another park, like we do. And sure enough, as we watched, a couple of tent-y things pop up, a football goal appears, the bicycle-powered smoothie gang are back - I swear they are stalking us. I downed about 3 in the other park on Saturday. Knocked back another half a dozen today. Then they lay out this obstacle course thing. The kids are circling them now. Light dawns. It's the good Christian Teen-Savers. They set up in parks and warn kids of the dangers of drink and drugs. We nicked all their freebies last year. Here we are again then. This time they got their guinnea pigs to don these Beer Goggles - that fuck up your vision - and attempt the course. Watching my Beckham-esque Reptile Boy stumbling though cones, swinging at missed balls, staggering into the ball pit was the funniest thing I'd ever seen. Until one of the dads did it. Then I really thought I was going to wee myself. I refused to put the Spaz Specs on - would've brought back way too many memories.

One of our mums did make a very good point however that it was kind of fun and that maybe that wasn't quite the message the Good People were hoping to get across. Hey kids - get pissed and you can do stuff like this! As opposed to being thrown out of cabs, slipping over in your own wee, trying to right yourself like a upturned beetle in the gutter, flinging your arms around someone else's boyfriend and vomming down his leather jacket, singing Danny Boy in a strange front garden, convulsing for 3 hours over a stinking toilet, waking up in a cupboard with no clothes on covered in unexplained gashes and bruises next to a dribbling beast in a pool of sick having mysteriously spent £600. You don't know where you are, or who you are. Your brain is banging down the walls of your skull trying to get out. You have compound eyes. You crave salt 'n' vinegar chipsticks and coke. This place is a rotting shit-hole. There are pieces of pilchards on toast on every surface. You realise you are at home all along. And you are late for work. About 3 days late for work. You need a drink. But I s'pose this might be a tad tricky to set up in Calverley Gardens for the afternoon.

God I am glad I didn't put the goggles on. Haven't sung Danny Boy for years.

And I'm so glad I don't drink anymore. My night-time vice is just herbal tea now.

Still makes you wee yourself tho'.

Some things never change.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Another Fine Mess. Absolutely fine.

Another day, another wilderness. That's the Home Ed way of life. Whether you take that literally or metaphorically - you know I don't care. Just this morning I'd checked the list of creatures we'd clocked on our last Bug Safari - a fair crop as usual. I am still refusing to go back to the lake to capture a pair of ex-not-so-ninja terrapins (apparently quite a population these days of these once discarded little charmers), despite daily pleas. Then there was last week's Woodfair World of Wonder. And this week we had Wilderness Woods - more bugs to spot, ponds to dip, frogs to terrify.... And my lardy arse just got lardier.

Bigger ones got to make a fence post - looked like it was just waiting for a vampire to saunter along. Little ones got to go into the scape of Xmas trees and shake 'em and see what poor little creatures fell out onto a sheet, scoop 'em up, show the man, drop them somewhere far, far from their once happy home, and tread on 'em. And grown-ups got to wander about, build dens - or in my case - plop down at the play area spread those buttocks a little wider.

I often warn 'Be careful what you wish for' and for YEARS I have wished to sit on my arse and yabber away to grown-ups without chasing small children with outstretched arms and outstretched mouth. I have now reached that hallowed place in my blessed life. And I am consequently hunch-backed, fat-arsed and ache all over.

I had taken an extra little chum with us and so found myself the meeting point for 5 busy nearly-humans. Rarely were any in the same vicinity as each other - so naturally it was me who had to be the constant. This also left me open to other bods asking if I could keep an eye on so-and-so while such-and-such and look out for that one while this one was..... Upshot = one lardy lazy lump. 4 (or 5?) hours later I finally wobble to my forgotten feet and round them all up to go and see the camp the 2 big ones (Minx and chum) had been working on all day with some friends and their mum and dad. We pass a couple of school-uniformed things on the way. Get to the camp and............... it's been totalled. Utterly destroyed. Hours of effort and joy strewn to the four winds. I now have ranting savages where I once had bouncing sprites. Roaring log-hurling required to appease the wronged gods of 'fair'.

Back home then. Not stopping for Mc Donalds on the way. I've ruined their lives!

2 days later - here we all are again. Food-stuffed rucksacks, macs round waists, back in another tangled woods. The objective is to get to some spring, say 'Ooh', pick berries for eager fruit leather experiments, eat picnic, find our way out again - and not step in any dog poo. But we are a band of outlaws. We don't do things by the book. What we do is follow the kids off in random directions - get pinned and punctured in brambles and holly whilst squeezing thro' grape-sized gaps in nature's knitting and sliding into streams with our boots on - albeit scrambling out again without them. Oh we 'ave a laugh. Hours of it.

We did eventually find the spring. Well, the kids did. The grown-ups were busy unzipping bags of food like we were extras on Tenko. Rocks, slippery slopes, water - yeah yeah whatever kids....where's me Twiglets....

We didn't find any berries, despite the rest of the country being laden, but we did spot hundreds of mushrooms and toadstools. And this was the religion of the day. This fungi-pointing has been a bit of a grower of late. We've done the 'Look!' bit (Bug Safari), which led on to the 'We should do one of those walks with a fungi fun guy' bit (Wilderness Woods), to the latest phase which is 'Someone's got a book!' This does also explain the speed of our excursion today. I did say HUNDREDS of mushrooms and toadstools. While the spotters peered and flicked through pages, the leaders would plough on which meant much yelling to get a fix on their coordinates. But gathering around a delicate lilac-coloured mushroom and discovering it's edible was always going to be worth it! A Lilac Bonnet was it? In one ear and out the other with me but when I'm in The Now I'm right keen. Also proper fairytale toadstools which I always get excited about and yet forget their name - Fly Agaric they are! I SHALL remember! And King Alfred's Cakes - so fab. Our lone Dad had his sparking kit and got it alight - I love this stuff!!! We also found another frog (always a draw), a badger or fox skull (not hanging from a tree like a warning or anything - that would be Devon), 2 abandoned shelters, a half-buried motorbike, lots of poo and plenty of happy children.

What would be the collective name be for a gang of mucky semi-wild gobby beautiful Home Ed kids?

There's a challenge.

And the collective name for a gang of mucky semi-wild gobby beautiful Home Ed parents?

Need a book to identify these species. And get the clever latin terms to boot.

Thinking caps on chaps.

Sunday, 19 September 2010


Yesterday, still basking, the Super-Muvva-Glowy thing suddenly realised she'd forgotten one of her closest friend in the whole world's birthday.


Back to being the useless old slut of habit then.

* * * * Sorry C!!! * * HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!! * * * *

And it's not the first time. I probably didn't need to tell you that.

I'm just crap at birthdays. And that other thing that begins with C that dare not speak it's name. I gave up the C-word cards many many years ago. And noone notices. Maybe I should just make a national announcement that I shall being doing the same with the B-word.

I know that just lame but...... it will save on text apologies. All apologies are lame really. Sorry.

Being organised ahead of time doesn't help at all. I've got piles of cards that were bought in advance but they still don't get sent. I'm too self-absorbed. Too busy lamenting about the ones I've recently forgotten to remember the next one around.

I used to make all my cards. I now buy them in bulk from that discount place. Even lowering my standards hasn't helped. I need to dump standards altogether I think. Like I dumped my standards of many things I once considered pride-worthy. Like......let's see now...... vocabulary, nutrition, hygiene, parenting..... Yes pretty much everything.

* * Sigh * *

Are Happy Birthday texts good enough? I'm happy with that but I'm weird about birthdays. Just wonder what normal people think about this?

Maybe I should find some.....

Does anyone know any?

Saturday, 18 September 2010

I did it!

THE Most Unorganised Fuckwit on the Planet just shepherded about 150 real people into a popular annual event - some on a Free Entry basis and some on a Discount Entry basis (thereby needing goats and sheep style catagorising) - all by myself - and nobody tried to kill me - and I didn't cry.

This is big. This is a very big thing indeed. Sod birth and death and marriage - I made a phone call. To a real person. Who I didn't know. I made a PHONE CALL !!!!

Recap, nutshelled: (It's a big nut. Like me. Deep breath...)

Last year, out of the blue, I snapped up the phone on an impulse and rang a very nice man at the Bentley Wildfowl and Motor Museum - just down the road from me - and asked politely about a possible discount for a gang of Home Edders for their annual Woodfair. 'Free Entry on the Friday!' the jolly man kindly offered. On a high, I posted it up on my Home Ed lists and waited for the gush of grateful and praising replies. Got about half a dozen 'Think we're free' s. Still on a high from my phone-phobe victory, I was luminous with pride. I had proved myself worthy of being called a grown-up. At last. Then it dawned that on the date of the Fair, I was going to be in Cornwall. Bugger. Handed my baby over to someone else. But text updates reported that the numbers had crept up to an astounding 50 or so happy Fair-goers. Cool!

And that was that. I had done my bit.

'Are you going to ring Bentley again this year?' sliced through a serene bug safari earlier this summer. 'Er....(shit!) .... oh... yes of course.' (Stupidstupidstupidstupid - the phone thing! The PHONE!!!!') And so it went on for a few weeks... 'Have you rung Bentley yet?' 'What day is it this year?' 'Have we got the same offer as last year?' (Pick up the bloody phone you twat and sort's just a phone for gods' did it last year.... sort of...)

So I did. (Thinking back, it was about this time that I started using deodorant again after 11 years of abstinence). Again very politely enquired about a possible discount, very kindly offered Free Entry on the Friday. I even tried to talk him out of it. 'But there was about 50 of us last year!' 'That's fine'. Blimey. Posted it up. Double luminosity. Then got about 170 enthusiastic 'We'll be there with bells on!' s. Blinded by sudden adulation, said 'Hooray! See you there!' to everyone. The pink clouds parted, the miniscule brain beeped. Shit. Panicked. Hid. Wrestled with The Fear. Eventually phoned again. Very nice man at Bentley obviously trying not to panic too. 'I'll have to contact the Fair Organiser'. He hid. I found him. Struck a deal. The first 75 get Free Entry, from then on a discount. A perfectly OK discount. Not a 'Star Home Ed Organiser of the Century' discount - but come on! Posted latest news up. Hid. 2 nights ago the penny drops as to why so many enthusiastic takers-up had not confirmed that the perfectly OK Discount Entry was perfectly OK: my initial Call to Free Event post had been cross-posted by someone, but the Whoops I've Fucked Up and Now All You Lot Have to Pay post had not. Plop. Visited by The Fear's big brother.

That's why my children had to witness my Scarlett O'Hara-with-a-yam stance this morning as I was cursing the gods of public humiliation for sending such a GLORIOUS sunny autumn day. 'Why isn't it pissing down??!! I don't want anyone to actually come!!!!'

But they did. And so did I. Smeared in fearsome wode and the blood of previous foes, I dealt with the angry mob bearing flaming torches and pitchforks with the bravery of Boudicca against the Romans. You should have seen me!

Actually you would have seen a pitifully apologetic middle-aged meerkat (with more than medically safe layers of mascara) waving a piece of paper about in front of delightfully understanding crowd of very nice parents and their little poppets. (I need that Adjective Anonymous number again.) The only enemy in the pack was the huffy lady at one of the tills being all puffed-up and silly. After my imaginary battles of the previous few days I speared her with no remorse and moved on.

And so, dear friends, allow me to bask in the glow of overcoming a Major Fucking Obstacle (albeit purely mental) in my pathetic little world.

Bask B a s k B a s k B a s k ........


So we were in. Ice-cream to start the day. And sitting on lardy arse in the play area. I know this is how most people would finish the day, but as I have now proved myself to be SuperMuvva grown-up glowy thing, I can do what I bloody well like. Big 2 long-since scampered, I only had my wee 2 to worry about - relative bliss. So we 'did' the thing. Jumped on the mini railway, peered at lots of woody creations, poked some, bashed one with a big stick, dragged Thuglet away quickly, found medieval archery - yay! Little Rock Godling beside himself at hitting the painted knight target 'right in the peanuts!', and Thuglet impressed the nice medieval lady with his apparent duck-to-water action. (It's a weapon, of course he's a natural). Got talking, as I do. Found out where the phrases 'rule of thumb', 'keeping it under your hat' and 'cock-up' originated. Next thing I know words like 'Oh that's very interesting! We're part of a Home Education group - do you come out to groups and do demonstrations and stuff?' are spewing from my stupidstupidstupid lips. What IS wrong with me?

Managed to grab myself by the scruff and frog-marched myself away before I started brewing mead. Distracted again by small boys in a hand-carved dug-out on a very small pool, even let them loose with a mallet to make wooden horses (sigh....sorry - it's a blinkin' dinosaur), meaty shire horses sporting Night Fever flares, Bronze Age roundhouses to destroy, paint to make by smashing things into gorgeous mush, sticks to collect, special stick to drop and cry about, trouser waist-band to ping leaving wearer to moon at passers by for rest of day (this wasn't me for once), friends to gang up with - and chips to smother in sugar (separate tales from reunited big 2). And back at the play area for the big finale - disappearing into the willow tunnels to swap dirty jokes. (That wasn't me either - for twice.)

But the BEST thing was, I got out of sittin' on the Group W bench for a double gymnastics lesson AND Mr GPants did the evening football run. Who knew Fridays could be fun?

Just one problem. Checking the ol' e-mails tonight..... 'So when is the archery?' 'Ooh archery? Put me down for 3' 'Someone say archery? Two please.' 'Fabulous. We'll come too.' 'I'm Spartacus!' 'I'm Spartacus!' 'I'm Brian and so is my wife!'........


I'm Spasticus.

Need more deodorant.

And way more mascara.

Oh and a brain would help.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Shoot them all down. Stamp on their graves. Blacken their names. This will make you feel better about yourself.

Watched a few bio-pics lately. Always turns out to be a bad thing. Obviously any famous person you ever had any admiration for is a total wanker with no redeeming features whatsoever. This is fact. If you take in this shit that is.

Over the last year or so I have gained so much insight to the creative soul through films and TV dramas. I now realise that in order to create anything beautful or entertaining you have to be an alcoholic bi-polar sociopathic sex-crazed child-hating Tourette's explosive destructive sadistic savage with a penchant for dark green wallpaper. (I think such mournful tones must contrast nicely with dripping gin or something.)

So how come I'm not famous? I can tick most of those boxes. Not telling which.

If you were to swallow all that's put on screen about the people who got off their arses and actually made something of themselves and made lots of other people very happy you would never ever ever watch another Carry On film, or watch any comedy performer of the 1960s or 1970s at all, or read a Virginia Wolf book, or indeed Enid Blyton, or listen to Ian Dury, or Edith Piaf, or ANY country singer (!) or maybe watch, read or listen to anyone/anything ever e v e r E V E R because they are all bastards and you simply can't condone such unforgivable inhumanity.

I wonder what the actors/actresses in these films are thinking while the films are being made? They all seem to be doing their best but inevitably end up looking like end-of-pier painted charicatures while all the other actors around them can do all the clever actingy bits.

Surely possessing talent doesn't automatically begat monsterdom. But 'we' must be demanding it. 'We' only buy newspapers and magazines full of stories and pictures of celebrities being brought down a peg or two. It's the British way. We only pat you on the head and stalk you all the way to the pedestal so that we can put you where we can get a really good clear shot at you.

I'm not asking for a whitewash - just maybe a balance? Or even entertainment?!! Really too suburban of me. Obviously not intelligent enough. Have no idea what film-making is all about. Not a clue about tension and drama. Should go back to Janet and John books. Hang my head in shame for saying out loud that arty films are crap....

......Oh but they bloody are! All this from an ex art student who loitered around the 'film' department for 3 years. It's not sour grapes because I left there without the capability of focusing a camera - honestly. I have goggled and frowned and stroked my chin for hours and hours of my life in front a screen. And I've worn the arty film appreciation beret at so rakish an angle you would die. And I feel totally qualified to blow raspberries at all this depressing hash.

I used to be able to sit through anything. Just in case it had one good line or one nice edit. It could simply be called getting old this impatience thing. If a film doesn't engage me within 10 minutes and hold my pelvic-floor-impaired concentration skills throughout, I just switch off now. I'm like that with books too. No guilt at abandoning somebody's labour of love. Too many mentions of some bird's curly long hair in one chapter and I really can't be arsed to wade through any more.

So if it's not sour grapes on my part, is it rank prunes on the part of these film-makers? There was a hilarious programme on C4 years ago called 'Secret Lives' or 'True Lives' - the basic premise being to besmirch some icon's memory and call it investigative journalism. They did one about Errol Flynn, mentioning his autobiography (which I had already read and gulped at) and promising that their programme would tell the real truth. All the filth they spewed out on the show was plainly IN his autobiography. And they left some juice out. So daft it was kind of admirable that they had such front. But it obviously had to be presented in this way as noone would have watched something that sounded fair. The very idea.

I had a flat-mate once who only liked happy films with white picket-fence endings and roses round the door and I used to tease her for being so dappy. Her argument was that life was rubbish enough and she didn't want to pay to see horribleness when she went out for the evening - she wanted to float on a cloud of lovely lovey love for a little while before coming back down to real strife. And now I am at one with this scene. I've used up all my grim film tokens too. Enough with the rivers of tomato sauce and flicking the volume buttons up and down all the time cos one minute they're muttering by a ticking clock and then they're suddenly screaming death threats in a pounding fetish club scene. Yawn.

Yeah I think I'd better send off for a subscription for Family Circle.

But before I go too far down the road of the vaselined screen-dream, I shall issue a challenge to a British film-maker to present a piece that doesn't take place in a dark green council flat, or a cold stately home, or in the dripping bleak back streets of some evil city. Doesn't contain grisly childhood flashbacks. Doesn't start with promise and chirpy cockerney chai-iking and slump into confused bog of tedium within half an hour. Doesn't have a death/funeral scene - probably with a pale neglected child present. Doesn't have a contrived and confusing 'chase' scene near the end. Doesn't end abruptly with forgotten dangling threads leaving the viewer feeling they have just lost 2 hours of their precious life - time that could have been better spent watching paint dry. Ah I could go on - and I know I do.

Go on you arty tossers, make me a film I CAN watch. Or should I just stick to the olden days films.... Bio-pics of Glenn Miller or George Gershwin that were fast-paced and cheerful and inspiring and happy. Seems a totally mental idea now to expect to be transported to another world for an hour and a half (tops!) and leave with a song in your heart!

So shoot me....

Thursday, 9 September 2010

And the Award Goes To.....


The Award for Least Popular Wife of the Year that is.

As you may have deduced, we have a blinkin' expensive August, followed by a starting-everyflippin'thing-again September which requires lots of sobbing cheque-writing at the worst possible time. If we had a cheque book that is. So I have been on a mission to be the most frugal good wife a striving self-employed man of ever-disappearing means could have. You know, I still haven't replaced my favourite dark green shimmery eye-shadow after the conjunctivitus adventures! THAT's how seriously I'm taking my spartan role.

But...... remember the car? The one I just popped into the garage about 2 weeks ago cos I thought the gears seemed a bit tricky. Well, IT'S READY! And with a service to get it through the MOT (unlike last year) to boot. Good news surely?

Bye bye last little penny in the jar. Bye bye credit card which is soon to be taken away by the nice people to save it from further abuse.

Hello car who isn't worth half as much money as you've just had spent on you. Hello soup. For the next 6 months.

Sod off Xmas. We shan't be needing your services this year.

Hello Freezer of Hate to which our children shall be sending us.

Or is that just me?

Bad Wife! Staaaaaaaay.......within your overdraft limit! DOH! Bad wife!!!!!!!!!!

Euuuuhhhhh....... Someone woke up after I'd got that far the other night and that was that. Abandoned ship. Dredged it up again tonight and had Mr GPants reading it over my shoulder.


I think that counts as talking to me.

Five minutes later he came back in all perky. 'I splashed out on something we needed today. Have a look!'

(Oooohh what could it be? I'm all tits and teeth. Has be been in the back room at Ann Summers?)

It's a digital thermometer.

Point those nipples back to the floor.

'Will it work?' (We've had these damn things before. Never work.)

His own happy boy nipples also slump. I've said the wrong thing again. He walks out.

From the kitchen I hear 'You certainly know how to ruin someone's life!'

I can hardly breathe in between silent cackles but manage 'And the award goes to ME!!!'

And tearfully (yes I am sniggering that much), I remember all those songs I have murdered over the years for him with a subtle change of lyrics. That naff one about my dad's dead and I never spoke to him - 'In the living years room'

'You make me feel like a natural woman yoghurt'

... what's that Bob Dylan one - oh yeah Sixteen Years - 'He wakes her up wanks her off'

Ohh - my special favourite - Circles of Your Mind. No lyric change needed. Just a timely pause.... 'Like the ripples of a coin. Someone tosses in a stream'

Ah there's loads that I can't remember until we get a Daddy Special CD in the car. It's not map-reading in our marriage that's the problem. It's not giving due respect to Todd Rundgren.

Firstly I would like to thank my family for moulding my early consciousness into the mis-shapen freak-form jelly I have then had to work with all my life. Thanks you guys. And my darling children. What can I say? You have taken me places I would never have discovered alone. Like Ward 3. And finally my amazing talented beautiful husband, Mr GPants. Without you I would have no joy. Everyone needs a dog to kick. And you are the perfect panting mutt to my shiny wedgey knee-high.

Thank you all! I love you!! God loves you!!! God elp us Get me off this bloody podium you skankhead. I've got a as-yet unblemished exhaust pipe needs this trophy shoved up it. Get out of my way........

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Shame On Me

Been sloughing about in my familiar fog of arsiness - ' is horrible, want to do something nice but can't til house is less horrible....' ad infinitum. All that counselling and I'm still doing this? And add this to the '...want to earn money but have no real way of doing it.... useless...talentless.... sociopathic.... lazy.... zzzzzzzzz'

I can't even bear to be in the same shower as myself.

And then, just as I'm looking for an excuse to delay going to bed and getting a good night's sleep once again I channel-hop into a documentary about John Callahan - the paraplegic cartoonist. I had one of his postcards on my wall years ago. And this film was really engaging. I felt he was like John Lydon on wheels. Odd and spiky here and there yet actually very sweet. Looking at him I thought well he must have got his feeling back in his hands to be able to draw. Then I saw him drawing - with the pen pinned between his hands. And he writes songs. And strums at a ukelele on his lap. Blows a mean harp. And sings. Really quite beautifully. Really quite beautiful songs. And I felt shamed. Embarrassed by my self-pitying lack of gumption.

The title of the film was one of his songs. 'Touch Me Where I Can Feel It' - at least I think that was it was. I didn't even 'get' how much that meant until after I'd cleaned my teeth. I thought I'll just check that on Wiki - I couldn't find that but at the bottom it said he died in July. Blimey. I feel completely bereft now. And shamed.

I had the same feeling sometime last year when I saw the film 'The Diving Bell and the Butterfly' based on the book written by a man who could only communicate with the blink of one eye. Had to read the book. Read it in one night. Awed and shamed.

Every so often I need a kick up the arse. Just to remind myself of my luck. And lack. Lack of appreciation.

Now if I really did want to write that book I keep banging on about, well I just would, wouldn't I?

Monday, 30 August 2010

There Ain't No Cure for the Summertime Pinks.......

Ol' Red Eyes is back. Back on the screen. Now able once again to spend hours with her cyber life without having to fling up her arms and scream like Bela Lugosi. Yes, the rabid conjunctivitus is finally ebbing away. Just slightly pale pink albino bunny eyes now. The occasional dab of a hankie. Old prescription sun-glasses that slide off the face put away again until the next foolish notion. Or the next re-infection. Yes she's back. And this time, she's mascara-free. If the red swollen pus-dripping blistering blood-eyed gorgon didn't scare you, Madame SG without her lady-disguise will send you howling for mercy. Look away. Look away now or so help me you'll freeze-crack in sheer terror.

Really, the last non-family member to see me without my face is still being fed with a spoon. That was New Year's Day um..... 199something. Poor boy.

And then, we were setting off for a friend's last BBQ on English soil. This is my husband's most glamourous and gorgeous sexy female friend. I have a massive spot on the right of my nose and the left eye of Satan's grandmother. 'Oh don't worry what you look like. It's not a competition honey' he says. The stupidity of the male can still silence me. But not for very long. Just long enough for him to duck.

It wouldn't have been nearly so bad if on the way the pharmacist hadn't winced in disgust and slapped that antibiotic ointment in my leperous hand. She sneered at my self-healing efforts of salt water and honey and yoghurt and tea bags. OK the teabags weren't chamomile. Nettle and spearmint aren't as soothing as they could be but the wayward eyeball cream was ferocious. I felt the left hand side of my face swell like a beachball and started sobbing along to the ABBA CD in the car. It was supposed to be feel-good sing-a-long to get us in the mood for cheery black sausages under grey skies. But knowing me knowing you darling can't you hear me the winner takes it all ain't it sad.... It's all too true, too true and I can't keep it in! I make everyone wait when we arrive while I patch up the streaks in my face powder and balance the sun-glasses back on my snotty nose. I emerge from the back of the car like a star. Feel like a twat.

By the way it wasn't my car. That's been sheltering in the bosom of the garage for some time now. Pleading to the mechanics 'Don't send me back there! They're maniacs!' But we shall be reunited soon I hope. And I will promise to not wreck another gear box and clutch this year. I'm not sure how many more light-hearted yet begging phone calls to my mum I am allowed in this lifetime. Still we got a ride in Mr GPants' 'nice' car. Only grown-up rubbish in it. A rare treat. Then we can send the traumatised little courtesy Punto back to its family. Due to the skanky eyes it's had more rest than expected, albeit shivering in the rain under flaps of bubble wrap held on with bricks and a watering can. It's lack of action in effect set it up as a sitting duck. One shattered back windshield later...... That Thuglet has one hell of a golf swing, just needs to work on his aim.

On the subject of golf balls ..... Being drawn into this house of all things creepy, crawly and growly and clawy, I was glued to a programme last night about crocodilians. (Get me.) And they demonstrated their speed of attack through the water using a golf ball as the illustration. It's all in the rough skin. And the related dimples on a golf ball reduce the drag by a half in comparison to an equal sized smooth ball. My mind starts ticking..... Still haven't rigged up our stream-lining experiments. Must buy smooth balls for Thuglet Woods. Wonder how fast my arse could fly?

Anyway, for all my previous whingeing about having a proper 'summer holidays', I then found myself in quarantine after all, blindly unable to enjoy it. The agony and the ecstasy indeed. Driven into the ground. Me and the car. All that tidying effort and now look. Filth returns to taunt me. Still, found a few weeping moments to work on my little pap mach tree. If I can't bear the real outside sunlight (what little there was), and only peek through dirty windows at my flittle butterflies, I can shrink my mind to gazing at a 2' tree instead. And shrink. And think. Tree. Branch. Twig. Blip!

A couple of days later I find myself bullied into the Summer Slam - a 'fun' free family fling in the middle of a park I normally get to sit still in. I'm not really ready to be out. I seem to be barking rather that speaking. I don't understand why people have to have 'fun'. Or why we have to queue to have it. And be surrounded by other people's children having it. I want to go back to my self-controlled shrunken mind-womb. But on picking up my missing football star from his chum's that afternoon I am bolted into an air-punching back-flip. There I sit with a nice cup of tea amid rows of neatly stacked ironed and labelled school shirts. Ha haaah.... I think I can just pick up the scent of my missing mojo again. Alarm clocks, bus stops, lunch-boxes, PE kits...... All can float past us social pop-outs. Not for us non-tow-the-liners! Yes, I can definitely smell it. The warm familiar hum of smugness. It may not be a pleasant odour to anyone else, a bit like a boy and his own farts, but it's so very comforting to me. (Actually it may be related to not bundling the kids into the bath every Sunday night. Perhaps I'd better hose them down soon though. If only for the sake of the courtesy car.)

But it's not like they're avoiding water altogether. Gorilla boy has been checking his little tank of £12.99 birthday money Triops every 10 minutes since he set it up. Been well over a week now and naafink. However, outside in the abandoned blackened slime-store previously known as our paddling pool it is teeming with life. The mini biologists have been busy. I no longer have a single mixing bowl or measuring jug left in the kitchen but they have incubators and observation podules all set up. One even made it onto the kitchen counter when the Chief Supervising Ecologist was worried the torrential rain would overflow their outdoor laboratory. No nice short-lifed educational little pre-packed shrimp things then. Houseful of mosquito larvae instead. Thank you boys.

Despite my reservations I did have to scrawl a name into a couple of footbally things this week and was worried enough about Little Rock Godling being abandoned for 5 hours among actual humans. He'd wanted to join in with a special Goalkeeping Day where big bruv was already signed up for the usual Skills Course. Now I regularly deposit Gorilla Boy on muddy pitches all over the land with no real concern but his younger skinnier surreal scarecrow sib? What would nice people make of him? Daddy flung them both out of the car and skidded off as fast as he could before anyone could catch his eye. He came back early however to check out the experiment and discovered that all the kids on the goalkeeping gig were as bonkers and cloth-eared as our own dear little muppet. He said it was as if they had gathered together all the little retard boys that the other players had told to 'just go in goal'. So Little RG perfectly at home, bless him. No offense to goalkeepers. Or to retards. Or even to LRG. Obviously huge offense to everyone else but hey......

And while I was indisposed Mr GPants had to do the ice rink run too and here's more bad news: Minx says he's more embarrassing than me. How can this be? I practice and practice til I'm fit to drop - he just turns up once in a blue and it comes naturally. I dropped to my knees and asked her 'HOW? HOW????' 'Mum, he calls out "Jazz hands! Jazz hands darling!"' God, he's good.

So now I am back in the 'outside world'. Even done a supermarket cruise. With 3 sugar-magnet boys. Trial by packaging. It's funny what attracts children really. I don't usually even blink before refusing most aloft prize hopes. 'Do you want this Mummy?' from the smallest in a sweet tone made me look. Tena Lady Pants. Pants! I didn't even know they did pants. Well I never! I'm looking too long and thinking too much. Snap out of it! 'Oh.... no thank you darling. Not yet.' .....Wow, they do pants......

And next week the world and its offspring crank into uniformed drill once more. I'll be back in the fray myself - albeit more like paintball than actual war. Way more fun but still exhausting. And The X Factor is back on Saturday nights for the next 6 months. Here come the winds of change. Blow the whistle - over the top lads, over the top.

Summer! What happened? Where did it go? They've all gone up a shoe size and down a haircut size. And I don't seem to have anything to do with it. The sun comes up, the sun goes down. And they all get a bit more mouthy. And a bit less blond(e).

So, adding another layer, what have I learned this Summer Holiday?

Well..... Be careful what you wish for (again), pharmacists are the devil's agents, ABBA are all too deep, I am a crap driver, golf balls can be interesting, no school is well cool, goalkeepers are nature's outsiders, butterflies are life's breath, the house will very quickly return to its natural wild state and perhaps even eat me, ignoring the garden is ecologically rewarding, they do Tena Lady pants now, childhood really is as fleeting as all those nice older ladies in shops say, less really is more and my sunglasses still don't fit. Oh - and the pride in my one talent, being the Most Embarrassing Parent, has been squashed.

To sum up the way Life just keeps on balancing things out, I shall leave you with a profound discourse from 2 enlightened Wise Women (ie Me and Minx):

M I don't like feet.
MSG They are quite handy.
M But hands are not very feety.

And the leaves start to fall.......