Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Welcome to Essex...

So sad as it may seem, I am now an Essex girl. Not by choice you understand, but because we could afford our lovely house here. And it's not been bad round here, if you avoid the town centre on a Saturday you don't see many chavs and avoid the excesses of Essexdom. The neighbours are lovely and we have a chip shop right round the corner and about ten million takeaways send us menus every day, we have so many we could eat at a different place for about a month without repeating ourselves. So far so good. But Saturday night we were rudely awakened by a typical Essex boy/girl fight right under our window. This is how it went (you have to imagine an Essex accent, kind of like Birds of a Feather, and really loud and getting louder in the sweary bits):

Dwayne: (I didn't catch his name but this sounds about right): "Oi! Youf broken me 'eart you fuckin' slag."

Jordan: "It was a mistake Dwayne, I'm really sorry"

Dwayne: "You SLAG you big fat SLAG"

Jordan: "Aw Dwayne, I made a mistake, can't we leave it? I really really luv yah"

Dwayne: "Feck off slag"

Jordan: "Dwayne, if you leave me now I'm gonna kill meself. I mean it!"

Dwayne: "!!!"

Jordan: "Come back Dwayne! COME BACK!! AAAGGGHHHHH!!!"

Dwayne: "Oh you fuckin' slag, I'm gonna ring your mam and tell her what a slag you are"

Jordan: "No! You'd better not fone me mam, fuck off Dwayne, I never wanna see you again"

[Sound of mobile being thrown and smashing into bits by the lamppost across the road]

Jordan: "No!! Not me fone Dwayne! I love ya Dwayne!"

Man in flat across the road: "Will you two sod off?!!"

Dwayne: "Right! I'm gonna come back wiv all me mates and get you! What do ya fink you are doin' looking' at me?"

And on and on. I would love to know what happened to them and if Dwayne eventually forgave Jordan. It didn't help that as I didn't dare look out of the window, I had an image of Vicky Pollard and Eminem in my head when I was listening to them. Then we were woken up by the Beach Boys being played at full volume by the crazy lesbian next door when her mum went to church in the morning. Earplugs at the ready next weekend...

Monday, September 19, 2005

Renee update!

So my source in the US says that Kenny is gay. You would have thought Renee would have established that before marriage. Or is she such a good southern gel that she waited till the wedding night and then got quite a shock. Doesn't she watch her own (or any) movies? And what was Kenny thinking? Did he think he would "get over it", or that he'd get half her millions just from marrying her, or that she's readily agree to a marriage of convenience (a la Cruise/Kidman allegedly)? I read today that Jack White has hot-footed it to Renee to help her get over it, leaving his own hastily married wife well pissed off. I love celeb rumours, now the Tomkat camp has gone into hiding it was jolly well time someone else caused some goss.

Footpath of celebrity?

So London has now got it's own Walk of Fame. Cool huh? A chance to celebrate some of Britain's best actors and bring a bit of Hollywood glamour to London. Nah. Who did they pick? Out of all the hundreds of well-loved actors from years and years of film and tv you would have thought they'd be spoilt for choice. But Hollywood get Marlon Brando. We get Ant and Dec. Hollywood get Greta Garbo. We get Dame Edna Everage. And why do we need to copy the Walk of Fame? Nicole Kidman made it onto both, so surely (apart from the bizarre tv celebrities that get on because they have been on prime time Saturday night tv for a few months and the grannies love em'), the Walks should mirror each other? And who picks them?!

And "Avenue of the Stars" as a name? Oh puhlease. It'll be a different story in a week or two when a few drunks have visited them. More like Urinal of the Rich and Famous.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Poor old Renee...

So after 4 months of marriage and a whopping 15 days spent together, Renee Zellwegger has decided enough is enough and is getting an annulment. Of course no-one ever says why, apart from a very vague reference to "fraud", so that fans of celeb gossip can spend hours and hours trying to decide what happened. These are my theories:

a) Kenny isn't really a multi-billionaire country singer, he is a successful mime artist who mimes to huge audiences, and Renee only found out when she asked him to serenade her on honeymoon and realised he didn't have the voice of an angel at all, more a rusty nail dragged down a blackboard.

b) She is still hung up on that kerazy Jack Black of the White Stripes (or substitute Jim Carey) and only married Kenny in a fit of jealousy/trying to win him back scenario that clearly backfired.

c) She refused to give up her career and go and live in backwater Tenessee breeding loads of kids and only seeing Kenny in between his world tours.

d) He refused to be arm candy and give up his successful miming career to follow her round the world to all her premieres and wait around in dodgy cafeterias while she's off filming.

e) The "fraud" references relate to the fact that she thought she was marrying Kenny Loggins (of Footloose fame) as she was off her head on champagne and pina coladas. When she sobered up she realised her mistake.

f) He thought she could wrap her legs round her head after all that dance training for Chicago. But she couldn't.

Ooh I could go on all night! It is sad, but then at least they can afford lawyers to swiftly annul the marriage and carry on like it never happened. But at least Kenny will be a hit with the girls. And what's with the "annul" rather than "divorce"? Does that mean they never did it either?! Poor poor Renee.

Yikes I'm falling apart!

Ooh I'm having a poor few weeks since my birthday. Today I am off work with a bad back. I'm not 60!! I don't even know what I did, but it bloody hurts. I never used to suffer with anything at all, a few migraines here and there and I've always had dodgy knees. But in the past 3 weeks or so, it's been possible RSI, bad back, my eyes are getting worse I'm sure and I found a white hair! AGH! I could be being a bit Dot Cotton over all this, but is it possible to suddenly age?! Or have I been in an ageing vacuum all this time? It's quite a shock I have to tell you. I have been lucky, in my 20s the worst thing I had was a hacking cough that lasted for weeks and drove me and my housemates mad. And I was on holiday in Crete at the time it started so my poor friend was kept awake, and I must apologise to all the people on the plane home too while I think about it. But now I'm prematurely old and can barely move, there's so much to do. Now I'm forced to spend time in our new house while it's daylight (which makes things look so much worse don't you find?), the weeds are taking over the garden, the front room looks like one of those Big Yellow Storage places and my dad is threatening a visit soon too. Renting was so much easier!

On the plus side, it sounds like Britney is going to name her kid Preston. Brilliant! I'm from Preston, and it's getting tons of press at the moment - Freddie Flintoff got the freedom of Preston the other week. He was being interviewed last week and I was listening thinking, "blimey he's got a right accent on him" then realised that's what I used to sound like before I defected south. Britters might also call the kid London which is also cool. As strange celebrity baby names go, they aren't too bad. Not as bad as Apple Paltrow or Junior Andre!

I think the Woman in Black might be partly to blame for my back problems. We went on Wednesday night and I was SO scared. I've seen it twice before and read the book so theoretically I shouldn't have been scared. Oh no. I was terrified! I don't know how they do it. There's 2 actors (plus the eerie woman) and not much of a set to speak of, 3 chairs, a basket, a few old boxes and some sheets. But they make it seem so real, and it is genuinely scary. The audience were screaming every few minutes in the second half. And jumping. Which leads to poorly backs I think. But honestly, if you haven't seen it and you like scary things, go and see it. You'll be checking under the bed before you go to sleep...

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Oh purlease!!

Today I have been told WAY too much information by certain acquaintances of mine. There really is no good reason to share very personal information with people you know, it puts vivid pictures in the mind that are very difficult to get rid of and frankly I can do without it. Today I have been told about birth control methods, that someone I know has caught a nasty STD off someone on the same estate (but is still going back for more) and that a friend of mine has taken up salsa dancing. The last one isn't particularly offensive but it did put a brilliant picture in my mind of flouncy sleeves and a big red flag. Oh sorry, that's bull-fighting. Almost the same thing I think!

But there is no excuse for being sat innocently on the enquiry desk only to have such filth sent to you to peruse. I am sure I am going to have nightmares tonight.

On the plus side, today we started doing library tours for new students. Ordinarily I hate them, I said several times today to anyone that would listen that I HATE LIBRARY TOURS. To be fair, we don't do that many, a couple of weeks once a day, but I've got a right thing about them. So imagine my horror when I found myself actually enjoying my tour today, and then volunteering to do another one when a lady turned up late for hers. What has got into me? The 6 lads I showed round on my proper tour were very polite, asked sensible questions, and all shook my hand when they left! Bless. I must look like an old married woman this year. Last year I got my stupidest question of my career (and he's still around!) - "has anyone ever been knifed in the head in this library? It looks like the kind of place that would". !!!!. I politely said "no I don't think so" but this bloke wants to be a lawyer? Well actually, thinking about it I suppose he's perfectly qualified being a bit (actually alot) eccentric! Another favourite is a bloke who asked us what size bag he should buy to keep all his books in, and then bought his purchase in to show us! He then proceeded to spend the next year asking us what pen/calculator/pad he should buy too and drove us all to distraction. Library users, they're all a bit odd.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Cut off in my prime?

So recently I've been suffering a bit with my wrist - early onset RSI I hear you cry, will Bookish Barbara be no more? Well, as I'm typing now it doesn't hurt a bit, but at work it really does. So being a sensible old stick, I contacted our personnel lady to see if she could suggest anything. She came over to look at my work station, and I thought I was on to a winner when she condemned my desk and said it was really rubbish and that was the root of all my problems. She also muttered the phrase "personal injury claim" so I thought: "Brilliant! She's going to sort it right out and heal my poor old wrist so I don't have to sue their arse". But no. After a promising start she said "well we can't do anything about it, so learn some keyboard shortcuts and try and be sensible about having breaks". Pft!! They won't get me a new chair with arms, but I am getting one of those cool mousemats with a gel pad in it. I had one of those before, and it was brilliant as a stress reliever, I spent most of my time messing with the gel pad, not leaning on it!

And the fact that my monitor is at an angle meaning I have to twist to use it, my desk hasn't enough room to lean my arm on flat when I'm using the mouse, and my arms are about to drop off because of it? Nada. I'm definitely going to take advantage of the advice about breaks, and when my boss asks why I'm always wandering off, I'll say it was on the advice of the personnel lady! Marvellous.

Of course, I can't really sue them as most of the time I'm on the computer I'm surfing the net or writing my blog! Dammit. Now I've got the miracles of the internet at home (yes indeedy it finally happened!) I'll have to do proper work - which incidentally does involve lots of typing - and then sue their arses!!

Monday, September 05, 2005

Birthday girls

So as it turned out, the booze-fuelled rampage round London turned into a more sedate affair. It started off with my birthday friend (a whole day older!) running into a large man as she was waving at me and paying scant attention to her immediate surroundings, she always does things like that! She'd fallen over on the way and ruined her beautiful pink shoes too so that was Bad Thing No. 2 (of the 3 things that always happen). I suppose running into a fat man isn't exactly Bad so I could substitute my failed attempt to buy new flip-flops. I found 2 pairs in Accessorise but only in wee tiny feet sizes (see Lady Librarian for this) so when I asked if they had any more I was met with a scathing "It's winter now madam". !!! Winter?! It's September people, Indian summer anyone? And Madam?! Do I look like Heidi Fleiss? Anyway, we made it unscathed to a lovely falafel place on Old Compton Street, and we got seats right opposite the Admiral Duncan pub (infamous for nail bombers sadly) - it is an amazing bright pink pub full of mustachioed men in vest tops and shorts. Kind of like Frankie Goes to Hollywood but more 2005 (they weren't all in shorts, I'm stereotyping here!). So we sat and ate big fat falafels and watched the comings and goings for a while and then Bad Thing No. 3 happened. Lady Librarian had been at work all day, (she does a 6 day week!) and the poor thing had spent the day with Bad Library Users and had the hump. Poor thing, she works way too hard and so she stayed in. That meant the person who could jolly us old ladies (on account of her being younger and knowing the cool scene better than we do) into drinking shots and dancing our socks off was no more, and so we stayed in the pub till closing and then wandered homebound. It was a good night, though less debauched than I'd planned, and my other young friend invented a great drink - gin with cranberry and apple juice. Yum. Maybe it is a sign of our age, we had seats so when someone suggested moving on to another pub we vetoed it on account of having to possibly stand up! Rock n' roll people, rock n' roll...

Speaka de Eenglish??

On Saturday night en route to the birthday do (more later) I had an entertaining encounter with a man on the tube. I don’t get the tube very often anymore and I was getting the Circle Line round from Liverpool St to Embankment. As a tube pulled up, a man asked me if it went to Victoria. I had to think about that for a second to see which way round the tube was going (imagine my horror if he’d ended up at King’s Cross instead!) and in this very short period he looked at me and said very slowly “Does … this … train … go … to … Victoria…?”. Do I look like a tourist or an idiot?! Why ask me if either is true? So I just said “yes” and scarpered up the other end of the carriage. I should have dragged out my GCSE French and babbled on at him about toilets in French to scare him off.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

It’s my party and I’ll strop if I want to…

So it’s my birthday on Saturday. Me & my friend who is a whole day older than me (but who isn’t showing any signs of being any more mature!) are having our usual joint do on Saturday night but I haven’t half got the hump about it. The past few years’ dos have been great, drinking and dancing and lots of embarrassing behaviour to be frequently dragged out by our friends to humiliate us with. I think my crowning glory was the year before last when I ended up being sick at Victoria Station at 2 in the morning, much to the displeasure of the poor station cleaner who happened to be passing. And in the train. All the way home. Ick. And I think that was the day I flashed my pants at my male housemate – admittedly I was unconscious and he was carrying me to bed – but how that one lingers. Oh no, that was a different day.

Anyway, I think I’ve got the grumps because now I’m married/old (I can’t decide which one it is!) I can’t be doing silly things like that anymore. I seem to be unable to get drunk nowadays and not that I want to now I’ve ensnared my lovely husband but I used to have this weird ability to attract lots of men when out on the town. This could have been because of the short skirts, or the beer goggles, who knows, but it was good for the old self esteem. Now although I have no desire to attract anyone else (man I’ve had my fair share of odd men in my glory days), I think it’s the fact that I could. The old self esteem is a bit low, and I feel like an old housewife doomed to a life of domesticity. My life at the moment revolves around gardening and cleaning and trying to get to Ikea. I used to be famous (or is that infamous?) for stupid behaviour and spending the weekends doing stupid things. I don’t do silly at the moment. Hubby is also prevaricating (look! long word alert!) about whether to come out at all, and he is spending the day watching football (yes I am a football widow). This is a perfect excuse to go shopping methinks but instead I’m grumpy about him not spending the whole day making me breakfast in bed, feeding me chocolate cake and champagne while also peeling grapes as I lounge in the garden reading trashy novels, and providing lots of lovely surprises all day long. As Lady Librarian points out, this would never happen. He is a man and men don’t think like we do. Though as long as he makes me a cuppa I’ll be quite happy!

So I think my challenge for Saturday is to drink lots and lots of random evil alcohol and see what the night brings! I need my stupid side back! But next week I’ll be moaning about the perils of alcohol and heels I should think.