Tuesday, 29 April 2008

Tag, you're it!

Sanddancer has tagged me. I think I've done this once ages ago, but as I can't recall my answers, I'll try to be original.

The rules:

1. Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to your blogs.
4. Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

So, here we go...

1) I have seen three ghosts while out with a friend, who saw exactly the same thing. They were Victorian. It was extremely weird. The experience was vivid and was almost like watching – or being in – a film.
2) I don't like spinach. My mum ate loads of it while she was expecting me and I wonder if there is a connection.
3) I'm always having to tell people at work my age, as they think I'm about 10 years younger than I am and they fail to take me seriously until I let them know that, often, I am older and more experienced than they are. I love watching their faces change and their attitudes sharpen up.
4) I love fighting. Kung fu, that is. Am not an aggressive person but I do find martial arts cathartic.
5) I got locked in the school toilets when I was six and screamed and screamed until the caretaker arrived. It was traumatic.
6) I am writing a psychological thriller. I aim to finish it by my birthday this summer. I will, I will!
7) I remember being about four and asking my mum whether we live in London, and being ecstatic when she said that we did indeed. I am a born and bred Londoner and love this city immensely. I love its flaws, beauty, history, diversity and its vibe.

I am tagging:
Misanthrope and Glory
NMJ (seven facts on her forthcoming book)
The Scottish Lemon
Absolute Vanilla
The Struggling Writer

Monday, 28 April 2008

Death penalty

I think perhaps in cases like this, the death penalty would be no bad thing.

Or, perhaps, harvest their organs. Donate them to people who act like human beings instead of feral moronic turds.

Killing someone because of the way they look surely is an indication of an intelligence lower than that of an amoeba?

Just in case there isn't a hell, can we at least make sure these creatures are meted some kind of justice?

Bike bum

Yesterday, I rode my bicycle for the first time in 18 months. Ouch. Sore backside. But it was good fun.

Sunday, 27 April 2008

"You're fired, and you, too!"

Apparently two The Apprentice contenders will be fired by Sir Alan this week. They are two women who "almost came to blows", according to the radio today.

Bring on Wednesday! I vote that Jenny and Helene go... *rubs hands*

I've just discovered that a friend's sister had dealings with the show and said that some of the would-be apprentices were "prats". Understatement.

By the river of London

It was beautiful yesterday. The sun shone (but not too hotly); it was the weekend (but not full of chores) and I had a new book to read (but was not limited time-wise).

So, I went to the riverbank and sat on a bench with my new book. A large group of sixteen year olds gathered nearby to celebrate one of the party's birthday. They weren't as noisy as some teenagers could be, and seemed to have plenty of fun without acting like fools. They tidied up as they went, too. It was nice to see.

People trailed up and down the riverbank in their dozens. Rowers drifted by, children were bought ice creams and drinkers took drinks from the nearby pubs to sit on the grass and steps.

I started on my book and, after a couple of hours, S called me and came to meet me. By this time, the antibiotics I have been taking for the horrible food poisoning had really kicked in and I felt spaced out and unwell. He suggested we go home. Not quite the day out I had in mind but it was the first time I'd been out (beyond the chemist) in two weeks, and was a bit much, perhaps.

In any case, we went home and I settled in the bright room upstairs, complete with fresh fruit smoothie, sunshine, an open window and the book. Home, sweet home...

Saturday, 26 April 2008

Russell Brand in my head

I watched Russell Brand (and the other guests Ashton Kutcher and Ronnie Corbett) on Jonathan Ross last night. And then I had a dream about him (more later).

I've always liked Russell Brand – since his very early days presenting Big Brother's Big Mouth a few years ago. I find him funny and love his way with words – he is articulate, that's for sure. He's a mad, pirate-esque rogue, and I like the fact that he is different and is controversial. People who call him stupid are sadly mistaken. One thing he is not, is stupid. I can see why he irritates some people but he is someone you either get or you don't. To call him stupid is stupid.

Anyway, last night, in my dream, I was staying at Russell's house, which was in fact a castle. It was a large place set in rambling grounds. It had tiny windows (like slits where arrows would be fired from) and larger ones, that had sturdy locks. He had cooked dinner for me, S, and some other people who had been invited and set it out on a large wooden table. There was a graveyard outside, a stormy, gothic place with fallen stones and crumbling headstones on uneven ground.

The scene changed and I was back inside, in a hall that reminded me of school assembly, and there was Russell, flitting in and out like a big, black crow of a man. Next thing, I realised I had lost my green handbag with all that it contained (I don't have a green handbag and if I did, it wouldn't be the shade of green that appeared in dreamland...). Someone had stolen my purse, keys, phone... Russell was very upset by this. I felt frustrated that I'd have to sort all those things out. Then, Russell started to show me various antiques around the place. And that was that. I dare anyone to psychoanalyse that one!

Thursday, 24 April 2008

Sir Alan, what are you on?

Last night, Sir Alan fired Lindi from The Apprentice. He really should have taken his opportunity to get rid of that cold fish, Jennifer. What a horrible woman. What with her, that Helene and the other Jennifer bitching, well, it doesn't give women a good name. The way they carry on is embarrassing.

I was pleased that Lucinda, who comes across as soft but is actually just a nice woman, didn't get the boot. Jennifer was icy. It was funny when she went back to the house after the board meeting and complained that Sir Alan had called her icy and the room remained silent as everyone silently agreed with El Beardo.

This is a very entertaining series but I think Sir A has made some diabolical decisions. But then again, he is a millionaire, so what do I know?

Tummy trouble

My digestive system is in chaos. It has been doing odd things – painful, cramping, horrible things... and I have not left home, except to drop a sample at the GP, for around 11 days. I'm too flipping scared to. Thank goodness I can work at home.

I think it started after I had a meal that contained prawns in a Thai restaurant. The next morning, my stomach/abdomen felt pretty dodgy and the morning after that, I was shaking violently, had a fever and was confined to bed for the entire week. I didn't even feel bored. All I wanted to do was lie still. Even changing position in bed was agony. I've had to take rehydration salts and have to say that I've felt so rotten that I didn't mind the taste. I've had to sit up at my desk this week, simply as I have so much work to do. But although I feel a tad hungry now, I'm by no means recovered.

My first sample (and oh, that was fun, getting that together!) was lost by the hospital's lab. So, I'm hoping that today, when I phone, they can tell me what the heck is going on and maybe give me some antibiotics.

Friday, 18 April 2008

*We interrupt this silence*

It's been a while since my last post, as I have been (and still am) ill with either a food poisoning bug or something similar. I've been in bed for nearly six days now. Not good.

Hopefully, normal service will resume soon (blogwise and me-wise).

Oh, can I just say: Sir Alan – what are you thinking? Why did you let Simon go? Why did you keep that awful woman Claire?! Total craziness.

Thursday, 10 April 2008

How old are you?

The start of a very, very busy day was made sweeter by the woman in Tesco who asked me if I had any ID on me, as I had a bottle of cava in my mound of supermarket shopping (I had started the day especially early, as S and I had to collect a car from the garage and I had to give him a lift there).

I told her I am in my late 30s and the cashier exclaimed in surprise. She examined my shopping, saying that I obviously look after myself. She looked impressed at my fruit and vitamins. (There was cake, alcohol and crisps in there, too.)

It was funny. I cannot believe the cashier really thought I was under 18 – maybe she is a soul who likes to cheer folk up. But I shall retain the memory, in any case.

Tuesday, 8 April 2008

A kilo of apples and a smack

I walked past a whole shelf – no, make it six shelves – of books in the Tragic Life Stories section in WH Smith. They all have similar covers and titles such as Please Mummy, No and Our Secret... and so on. They sell millions.

I bought Ugly last year (it's about Constance Briscoe, who tells how her mother treated her appallingly badly – she went on to become Britain's first black female judge despite the hardships; some of her family are now suing her for libel). I could only get through one-third of it. It was so sad and depressing; I flicked to the end, where Constance was triumphant. Her story is undoubtedly inspiring. I know such abuses go on from watching and reading news accounts of court cases where parents or step-parents are jailed for hideous crimes; I found reading it in my leisure time slightly uncomfortable.

I can see that these books may give fellow sufferers a boost, a window of hope, to show that they, too, can overcome unbelievably awful early starts. But I can't help wondering at those who read the books slightly voyeuristically, or who think reading about someone being systematically abused is on a par with reading Bridget Jones or Jackie Collins. Hmm, shall I buy the bonkbuster or the battered child? Does it cheapen the abuse suffered to have these books on sale next to the vegetables in Tesco? I wonder.

Sunday, 6 April 2008

April snow showers

© Mellifluous Dark. All rights reserved.

The snow, in places, was very thick earlier today. It was beautiful. The trees were heavy with clumps of snow and when S and me walked (gingerly in my case due to the knee thing), the squidge-crump noise was satisfying. We had lunch in a country pub and then returned home and had tea and chocolate cake from M&S.


This morning I dreamed that my mum told me that I am adopted. In this sleep-state, I was shocked, troubled, looking for S so that I could tell him, but he was nowhere to be seen in dreamland.

It's very odd. I mean, there's no possibility that I'm adopted – I share many of my parents' characteristics (physical and otherwise). I'm close to them, too (so there's no rift that could have sparked this uncomfortable dream). My dad was around, going in and out of the dream, saying it was about time they told me. They seemed sad.

Then, as with dreams, it was nighttime and I was outside in the street of my childhood home. First, someone drove off in my car – my old car that I owned for 15 years. I ran but couldn't catch them as there was snow on the ground. Then, my rabbit, M, was lost outside – I found her and scooped her up. She was wet and shaking, her soft, dark fur was covered in snowflakes. When I awoke, I pulled back the curtains to see that snow is falling...

I know it's a cliché... (part two)

Last Sunday, it was sunny in London. I put on sun cream as I felt my arms heating up as S and I went for a drive.

Two days ago, it was 18 degrees and the sky was deep blue.

Today, it is snowing. Snowing! It is very pretty, yes, but it's meant to be spring. Poor little flowers, I hope they survive.

Friday, 4 April 2008

I know it's a cliché...

...to go on about the weather, but it's gorgeous now. The days are warm – about 16-17 degrees, and the evenings are long – and getting longer. It's beautiful.

After last year's unending mono-season of 'springtumn', it's good to feel a new season beginning and the promise of warm days that go on for a stretch of longer than a weekend. I bought two summer dresses and a couple of skirts last year, in preparation for the sunshine, but didn't get to wear them. June, I recall was rainy and the rest of the summer was indifferent.

I'm one of those people who sometimes wakes up headachey when it's overcast (though I do like storms and rain), so sunny mornings and cool nights are simply perfect for a clear head. I guess that if low pressure can affect a barometer, it can affect the brain, too. Simple really.

My garden is crying out to be pruned back. It's wild. The clematis has clambered up the high walls and the shrubs are shadowing some smaller plants. Time for secateurs, followed by a warm bubble bath and a glass of bubbly, if my knees hold out, of course...

Thursday, 3 April 2008

Oh, Sir Alan!

The outcome of last night's episode of The Apprentice was ridiculous. Why did Sir Alan fire Shazia? It was blatantly obvious that Jenny Loudmouth should go. She was rude, unpleasant and lacking charisma. Also, she let Shazia leave the premises (this was the main reason that Sir Alan fired Shazia) – so shouldn't it be down to her to know who should stay and who should leave the place of work? Very odd.

Raef and the boys turned around their reputation and ran a slick ship, winning the challenge hands down. There was no silly bickering – just lots of camaraderie. I know whose team I'd rather have been on (though I'd have to have a sex change!).

Tuesday, 1 April 2008


I had a very detailed dream last night/this morning about a gorgeous pair of shoes. Actually, they were shoe-boots, which in waking life always gape around my ankles. These were tan, leather, had a sort of lacing thing going on and were wonderful. They cost £385 but I still bought them. I even had the slightly sick feeling I get when I'm buying something that I like to call an 'investment'... Expensive dream, that.