Sunday, 10 April 2011

Intelligent Life on Other Planets?

Well...... here on Planet Smokingun it's all a bit of a ping pong match. One day this and the next day that. But hey - one day I'll be a real grown-up I'll make sense of it all.

Meanwhile, what's this purple pile of poo being pushed from one end of my kitchen counter to the other? Oh yes. Bloody census. To be returned by March the what? Phffttt.... I know if I was doing me family tree stuff the old census reports play a part and that but..... do I trust the government, any government with whatever information I might impart? Nope. Do I give a flying fuck if the purple pages get covered in gravy before I get round to opening it? Nope. Could I give it to Little Rock Godling to make paper aeroplanes out of? Hmmmnnnn......

There are other things on my mind. Like have the agency we rent through dropped a clanger? We were told we had first dibs on the house down the road which, although I still can't get excited about, we have tramped through and have said yes to - as long as they fix the damp wall in the dinosaur bedroom. But we are told that there are two other people interested, one very much so. We rang the next day to accept but heard nothing back. Rang the day after and were told we'd know by Monday. So my current address is still: Limbo.

And as for this house. We have pushed the poor old boat to its very limit. Half the downstairs is now a Rubber Boot Only Area. I'm not talking saucy here - I'm talking very unsaucy wellies. I'm talking a lake in the utility room. A lake under the utility room - seepage under the lino and out into the hallway. Under the hallway carpet and into the kitchen. And eventually to the sea.

Am also hanging my head in shame about my car. Or Plan B as it is now known. The very nice people at the garage have solved the mystery of my repeated brake failure episodes: Fuckwitism. Plan B has been such a frequent visitor there lately - no part of its anatomy has been neglected - but they could find no reason for the brakes to 'go all spongey' as I put it. Until Friday. I'd only just driven away from the garage itself - missing my turn and pootling off down a twisty track with just a vain hope that I would eventually link up to the main road later that day. Vain a hope it was as the relevant pages in the AA East Sussex book were missing. Of course. See - I did stop to do grown-up map peek. Decided that it was fun anyway so off we set again. And then...... always on a bend - me brakes went all spongey. Did they? Kept going... Oh yes. Am I sure? Let's just see.... Oh yes definitely. So I spongeily drifted to a stop - just as I approached the nice sign saying I had indeed found the main road. Well that was something. A very nice mechanic from the garage came out to swap the courtesty car for my smokin' heap and we were off again. Ha! I thought. NOW they'll see!

Yes they did.

Conclusion: I've been driving with my hand-brake on. This causes the brakes to overheat, get upset, refuse to work under these conditions and take up smoking.

Poor thing. And I've been kicking its arse, calling its parentage into question and worst of all piling all my stinking children and their dubious wildlife discoveries inside it's belly and deafening it with Now 74-77 til I'm surprised it hasn't driven itself off into the English Channel.

All things eventually lead to the sea. The car, the house, my mind. In fact we all headed down to Hastings on Friday (in the little courtesy car). Never At Home Education Rides Again. Hired out our fave Electric Palace Cinema to watch a film, eat cakes and dance and then bomb down to the beach, scooping up chips and a stranded starfish on the way. We had quite a mariney biological kind of day with all the fishy skeletons and bits of crab they found and the leopard shark that one dad caught. This rather cross little shark curled up and bit him a few times and then he said 'Who'd like to hold it?' I laughed - thinking it was a good joke. But he was serious. It was Alligator Boy himself who carried it back to the sea for a majestic setting free scene. 'Cept he sort of plopped it in the shallow bit upside down as the wave went back out and it flapped about really really cross now. So he picked it up and lobbed it. Ever seen a leopard shark fly? We did. Not as emotional as one might hope this Back Into The Wild stuff. But as I'd already missed the starfish's joyous return to the waters 'cos I was in the chip shop, it had to do. Tried to take a picture. Got wet.

I think it was the sea's way of saying 'Oi!' as I seemed to spend most of my day facing away from it, engrossed in big conflabs. There has been an outbreak of 'democratic debates' lately and I had stated from the off that if anyone passes me a purple hat or a juggling ball for me to take my turn to speak then they could shove it up their ballot box. I can not hold my tongue and hold up my hand. If I can't interrupt someone who's windbagging with an unnecessary wise-crack then I don't wish to take part at all. The passing of the permission-to-speak-uninterrupted flag is just an opening for people to yabber yabber bollocky bollocks in circles for hours and I haven't got those sort of social skills that can keep me quiet for longer than a hesitant utterance and a half. It may be called Tourette's Syndrome or something...... Fuck it. (I mean if you want to spurt forth into verbal oblivion write a damn blog eh?) But last Friday we had a good old chirpy ding dong - when you blurt out your pennyworth while someone else is still blurting theirs and everyone chimes in with their own bing bongs, finishing each other's sentences - it's way more constructive. Proper talking that is. Got it sorted.

So now what's this other leaflet on my kitchen counter then? The referendum on the voting system! What larks!!! Just reading it exhausted me. Still - seems like a giggle. Anything to get the vote-counters in a flurry. Serves 'em right for being so keen. So we could vote, go to bed instead of sitting up watching swing-o-meters, get up without anybody waving on the telly, set about our usual business - probably for days and days - and eventually get to hear about the result when we've lost interest. Hopefully much less No News to avoid. Got to be a good thing surely? Or would the No News just go on and on and on and on....... Well I never watch, read or listen to the No News anyway. That's why I'm so well informed about everything. And probably why I can't keep my mouth shut. (Or my car running. Or my house in order. Or my children in line.....)

Back to the census thing, Leopard Shark Boy asked me what it was and why was I so grumpy about it. Tried to say the right thing - you know.... family tree, historical interest blah blah but couldn't help myself and babbled on about not trusting this or any government. 'But what about David um...' he's thinking. He's not holding a purple hat. We start prompting 'Cameron?' 'No....' 'Nick Clegg?' 'No...' 'Tony Blair?' 'No... David um.... Beckham?' 'He's not a politician.' 'But what if he was?' 'Well.... as soon as he'd put a suit on I'd not trust him.' 'Why?' 'Well.... as Groucho Marks once stated that he'd not want to be a member of any club that would have him as a member, I'd not trust anyone who even wanted to BE a politician.' (This makes perfect sense to me but I'm faced with a nine year old blinking. Decide to try again in a more sing-song explanatory way.) 'I just think that politicians are all um...-' 'Bastards.' he interjects.

That's my boy.


  1. I've been looking forward to a good old rambling post like this - lobbing sharks and Tourettes.

    Can't believe you were driving with your handbrake on? Are you mad, woman? ... Don't answer that.

  2. Sounds like a young man of sound judgment! Out of the mouth of children....
    Driving with the hand brake on? I imagine it smelt a bit?!!

  3. Trish: I won't.

    Diney: Yes it did! PS - hello!!

  4. Yeah...the census. Didn't like doing it one bit. Made me mad. Kept thinking of all the good it will do someone one day as they research family trees and spew out statistics, but I really resented doing it. It's just so NOSEY. How many bathrooms indeed? I did it though, not on the day but the morning after, and I still got a bloody letter through the post reminding me to do it OR ELSE.

    Driving with the handbrake on? I don't drive so it seems perfectly plausible.

    Have had some good times in Hastings - used to love all the old games on the pier.

    Hope your house thing gets sorted soon - the uncertainty must be driving you up the wall.

  5. Seems like none of my friends filled it in at all. I did eventually but very ungraciously - none of my wild ticks were anywhere near the boxes and I used joined up writing across all the name and address type boxes. Such a rebel.

    As for the house thing..........